Mr Loophole, Nick Freeman, renews his calls for changes in the law to ensure cyclists are treated the same as motorists

Motoring lawyer Nick Freeman, famous for getting celebrities off driving offences, says that bicycles should carry identification plates and that cyclists should be forced to wear helmets and hi-vis clothing.

Mr Freeman, who goes by the nickname Mr Loophole, sent out a press release about his thoughts on motoring law reform, in which he says that cyclists should be forced to comply with the same rules as motorists.

The same lawyer recently said that motorists should ‘fight back’ against ‘goading’ cyclists; his words coming after a video of a driver chasing a cyclist on foot went viral.

“Cyclists are incredibly vulnerable and wearing helmets and sporting hi-vis clothing – which will cut down on deaths and injury – should be made mandatory,” Mr Freeman said in his press release.

“In addition there are a number of cyclists who seem to totally disregard the Highway Code and ignore signals and junctions at their own peril. Motorists are easily identified by their registration plates, but cyclists are relatively anonymous.

“The Government must look at introducing a raft of legislation which deals with identification, visibility, compliance with road traffic regulations, insurance, cycle excise licence and compulsory use of a helmet. This list is not exhaustive.

“The goal is to improve the quality of driving and cycling by both parties, thus increasing accountability and enhancing road safety.”

While some of Mr Freeman’s points are valid, and indeed called for by much of the cycling community, such measures as forcing riders to wear certain clothing and helmets would likely lead to a decrease in participation in the activity – Mayor of London Boris Johnson has regularly stated this when the helmet debate is raised.

Legislation requiring cyclists to carry identification has been floated in Sydney, Australia, but affixing an identification plate to all bikes would prove a challenge.

Mr Freeman added that anti-social cycling, such as jumping red lights and mounting pavements, needs to be tackled in the interest of all road users.

“Undertaking when approaching left turns, ignoring red lights, not being visible in low light conditions and mounting pavements are just a small number of practices that are commonplace,” he said.

“Enforcing this kind of legislation is in the best interests of all road users. It will tackle slipping road safety standards head on.

“The Cycling Proficiency test should be made compulsory for cyclists using public highways. To pass it means reaching a certain level of competency and an understanding of the rules of the road.”

  • Mike H.

    I hate to break it to Mr. Loophole, but there is a “raft of legislation” out there…for all road users…yes, that means they are applicable to motorists and cyclists too. Guess what? In spite of the legislation, motorists still speed, run stop signs, don’t fully stop at red lights, make illegal turns and unsafe passes and so forth. If the motoring example is any indication, a “raft of legislation” won’t fix what’s going on with cyclists either. If you want cyclists in helmets and hi-vis, then please also introduce roll cages and mandatory striping for cars and lorries…goose and gander, tit for tat and all…all in the name of safety, of course. (Hint: it may make things a hair safer for the individual, but won’t address the problems on the road any more than what you’re proposing.)

  • lee

    I’m 43 have rode since a kid. It seems drivers have less patience nowadays, are less courteous and now their really is a bit of a confrontational aspect on the roads, sadly.

    I don’t feel YouTube has helped matters, tho I can see why people do it tho.

    Where will it all end / how will this aspect’ of road use continue; killing each other in the road ???

  • FPCyclist

    Right on.

  • FPCyclist

    Brilliant. How about retesting the very old drivers too? You know guys, the ones that can barely see over the steering wheel. If we’re gonna rewrite road rules let’s fix that kind of stuff first. Cyclists are far down the list. I don’t think some ambulance chaser is the guy to lead the anyway.

  • hhdfhsafssf

    Compulsory helmets for motorists? They should wear hi-vis jackets too.

  • Ian

    No worries about treating cyclists the same as motorists. Compulsory helmets will probably cut the death/disability rate tremendously.

    Make headlights in the daytime compulsory and only sell cars in bright colours rather than the invisible silver/grey.

    Oh, and by the way, registration for cyclists means we get a whole road lane to ourselves.

    Bring it on!

  • lustra

    Mr Loopyarsehole is beneath contempt.

  • Craigy

    The real issue is actually those who simply disregard the law. Neither cyclist or motorist are above the law and, for the most part, the law is the same for both. If cyclists and motorists all kept within the law and applied due care and attention at all times and drove/rode with due caution, there would be no problem. The only animosity there would be is when one gets aggravated by getting slightly inconvenienced by the other, in which case, grow up and move on.

  • captainPerfect

    Can of worms.
    ID badges, tests etc etc. All this from a guy who has probably not rode a bike since being a junior school. With his idea, all bikes will require an ID, even childrens’, otherwise the authorties couldn’t locate the parents who don’t seem to care if their children have a helmet or if their bikes have lights or brakes. Their children will also need insurance and show they’ve passed the tests. No need for all this.
    The problem is the city riders, sort them out with the bureaucratic control balony, add the control to the congestion charge software. Make motorists responsible for an accident involving a cyclist.

    Leave the rest alone, we’re not the problem

  • David Bassett

    Well said

  • David Bassett

    I made this comment to Gary Jogela
    I THINK Mr Loophole, Nick Freeman is the pillok that got my alcoholic cousin of drink driving three times. The whole family thought she should go down(for her own and others sake) the second and third time were within twelve months of each other.
    He seems to think drink driving speeding and everything else is O.K. if the Police man said something wrong opening up a loop hole

  • David Bassett

    I THINK Mr Loophole, Nick Freeman is the pillok that got my alcoholic cousin of drink driving three times. The whole family thought she should go down(for her own and others sake) the second and third time were within twelve months of each other.
    He seems to think drink driving speeding and everything else is O.K. if the Police man said something wrong opening up a loop hole.

  • Jezz Ellis

    or joggers who run on the road! 🙂

  • Jezz Ellis

    and in the meantime he’ll continue to get celebrities off driving offences!

  • Sean

    These people need to realise that light jumpers and rule breakers boil the blood of law abiding, proper cyclists too.

  • Craigy

    Is this guy serious? Does he realise that he gets paid handsomely to defend the actions of law breaking motorists? Maybe he’s running out of loopholes, so is diverting the attention. “I put it to you, my honour, that those people died in the accident involving my client not because my client was speeding, over the drink drive limit and jumped a red light, but because a cyclist rode on the pavement without hi-vis or a helmet”. Genius!

  • hodsgod

    What a load of rubbish, how can anyone take you seriously when you exaggerate like this. I live in London and commute five days a week. If car drivers drove like the idiot cyclists their would be cyclists killed every day not every month. In a 25 minute journey I see cyclists pass through red lights regardless of how long they have been red, every day, you never ever see a car do this.

  • Andrew Bairsto

    This excuse for a man should crawl into a hole and maybe some of the drunks and speed merchants he so gladly relieves of money would get their just deserts.

  • Barney

    Click-bait, ad revenue. I used to enjoy this site, but it’s become just so much “what happened next will enrage you”.

  • Tim Ranger

    We should listen to the opinions of someone who makes a very comfortable living from helping rich people avoid taking responsibility for their actions because…

  • matt

    And all that from a man who spends his time and makes his
    money from getting motorists off their crimes on technicalities, shame
    on you CW for printing this!

  • Brian Sharpe

    We have (obviously non-riding) nitwits on this side of the pond too. The only possible benefit I could see to having registration tags on bikes would be that it may cut back on thefts but given that bike makers don’t use any system like the VIN for putting serial numbers on bikes the system would be cumbersome and expensive to implement.

    It may be anecdotal but I see motorists flaunting the rules of the road with alarming regularity and the criticism leveled at cyclists make me think of the saying about people in glass houses…

  • jez

    We are careering headlong towards extreme nanny statism. All cyclists wearing hi-vis clothing? Do cars all have to be hi-vis too?

  • Gary Jogela

    The problem is it’s self absorbed t@*ts like him that perpetuate the myth that ALL cyclists disregard the highway code.
    Does he want to make an example of all motorists who don’t bother indicating whilst a cyclist is close by?or of those motorists that simply pull away from the kerb as a cyclist is passing?

  • Dan

    Why stop at cyclists; lets give pedestrians number plates and hi vis too…

    What a tool.

  • Scott Harriman

    If cyclists are required to wear hi-vis then motorists would have to be required to repaint their cars in hi-vis colors.

  • Derek Biggerstaff

    Some ego. Do all his opinions warrant press releases? Should CW really be giving this clown what he wants?

  • David Palmer

    To make it fair this should be applied to ALL road users. Can you imagine trying to attach a number plate to a horse 😉

  • dave

    Does he want children to do this as well? what a tool

  • ummm…

    lawyer-cum-troll…..hahaha

  • Lucas

    If we take this argument to its logical conclusion we should require all pedestrians to walk on pavements and not in the road without looking whilst looking at their mobile phones. Just as dangerous and irresponsible as the stupid cyclists and motorists. Oh and while we are at it why don’t we require all pedestrians to have a sign on their back and front with their unique ID number on it. Nick Freeman, please keep your ridiculous arguments to yourself.

  • SirWobbly

    Lawyer-cum-troll Nick Freem said “cyclists who seem to totally disregard the Highway Code and ignore signals and junctions at their own peril”. That is true, it does put the cyclist at peril. Compare that with a motorist totally disregarding the Highway Code and ignoring signals and junctions which puts everyone else at peril.

    When the motorists stop breaking the law, driving dangerously, killing hundreds, then you can look at inventing new laws for vulnerable road users. And not before.

  • anonymousktvz

    if we really want everyone to stay safe we should be chaining everyone to a tree at birth… anything less is just asking for trouble

  • John Westwell

    I already wear a helmet, have insurance through British Cycling, I don’t undertake vehicles turning left and – when I last looked – the emissions from bicycles are zero, meaning that they wouldn’t be eligible for vehicle excise duty under the present rules. Also, I don’t see many cars being stopped for running red lights, driving on pavements and exceeding speed limits (and I see these things happen every single day), so I’m not sure where Mr Freeman’s problem is.