A delegation led by the bereaved family of a cyclist is travelling to Strasbourg to call for improved European legislation to tackle cyclist deaths and injuries involving HGVs.
The delegation is part of a campaign, backed by Team GB cyclist Rebecca Romero and Brake, the road safety charity, which aims to raise awareness of the dangers posed by truck blind spots to cyclists and pedestrians.
Around 400 people, mostly cyclists, pedestrians, and motorcyclists, are killed each year across Europe as a result of HGV blind spots, according to Brake.
A European Parliament written declaration on HGV safety, tabled by Fiona Hall MEP, is currently under consideration, proposing that new trucks should be fitted with the latest blind spot equipment. MEPs have until 17 February to sign the declaration.
As well as supporting the campaign for improved legislation, Brake is working to advise fleet operators on improving the safety of their vehicles through its Fleet Safety Forum. The charity is appealing to HGV operators to fit the latest blind spot devices to all their vehicles, to minimise the dangers they pose.
Rebecca Romero, Olympic gold-medal winning Team GB cyclist, says: “It’s tragic so many cyclists lose their lives each year by being hit by commercial vehicles, often as a result of the driver failing to see them – yet many of these tragedies could be prevented by devices fitted to vehicles to reduce blind spots.”
Fiona Hall MEP, who tabled the European written declaration, says: “Sensors and cameras should be compulsory on all lorries so that drivers are always aware when someone is close to their vehicle. This is everyday technology that is used to help car drivers with parking – on lorries it will save lives.”
For more information contact Angelika Schneider at Fiona Hall’s office on +32 2 28 41019 / 07950 184 194.