A new analysis has revealed Britain’s most dangerous road junctions and identified specific cycling accident blackspots where cyclists are being injured every few weeks.
Interactive maps, produced by The Times newspaper and Esri UK – a firm specialising in producing geographic information systems (GIS) - have been published this week as part of The Times’ Cities Fit for Cycling campaign.
The maps identify junctions in London, Cambridge and Devon that had the highest number of cycling accidents last year.
The most dangerous blackspot was revealed as the East London junction of Stratford High Street and Warton Road, close to the London Olympics site, which has to date seen eight recorded cycling injuries and two deaths.
The Stratford junction recorded the highest number of cycling injuries despite the presence of a clearly marked blue cycling lane along the main road as part of the Mayor’s ‘cycle superhighway’ programme – a series of cycle routes running from outer London into and across central London.
Cycling groups have previously raised concerns that cyclists approaching the intersection were at the mercy of turning vehicles due to a raised curb, used to segregate cyclists from traffic, ending at the junction.
The analysis revealed that six out of the top eight junctions with the highest cycling accident rates were in London, located in Deptford, Clapham, Peckham, Shoreditch and Stepney Green.
The second most dangerous blackspot was identified as a roundabout in Cambridge between Trumpington Street and Lensfield Road, which saw seven recorded cycling accidents in 2014.
The only rural blackspot identified in the analysis was located on the A3072 near Beaworthy in Devon, where six cyclists were injured last year.
Department of Transport statistics released in June revealed that 21,287 cyclists were injured on our roads last year, up 9.5% in 12 months.
The number of serious cycling injuries has risen each year since 2004, excluding 2012/13. Last year’s serious cycling injury figures jumped 8.2% to 3,401, with 2014 seeing the highest number of fatal cycling accidents (113) since 1999.
The Times and Esri UK analysis illustrates how 75% of all recorded cycling injuries in 2014 occurred within just 30 metres of a junction or roundabout.
Commenting on the interactive maps, Roger Geffen, the CTC Campaigns and Policy Director, said it was wrong to concentrate improvement efforts solely on junctions with recorded accidents “These maps highlight the crying need to give cyclists greater safety and priority, particularly at junctions.
“However, junctions with large numbers of cycling injuries aren’t the most ‘dangerous’, they may simply be well used by cyclists. Equally, a lethal edge-of-town junction with a motorway might have no cycling injuries because nobody dreams of cycling there. Still, both types will need safety improvements if cycling is to become a safe activity for everyone.”
The Government is currently spending £318m on improving cycling infrastructure including more designated cycle lanes and education on road safety for schoolchildren.
Paul Kitson is a keen cyclist and Slater and Gordon’s Principal Lawyer for the CTC, the UK’s national cycling charity.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers have secured more than £40 million in compensation for CTC Members who have been injured in cycling accidents since 2002.
For a free consultation or to claim compensation for cycling accident injuries, call our specialist Cycling Accident Solicitors 24/7 on freephone 0808 175 8105 or contact us online and we will call you.
Are there any junctions near you or on your commute that you as a cyclist believe are dangerous and need improving?