It’s time to draw a line: Bikes and lorries don’t mix

Bikes and lorries don’t mix. It’s as simple as that. If London mayor Boris Johnson is serious about improving safety and encouraging more people to cycle, we don’t want juggernauts anywhere near us.

Segregation is the only solution, with British Cycling’s policy adviser Chris Boardman the latest to call for a peak-hour ban on trucks.

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Of course, the hauliers are outraged. Restaurants will run out food, they say; shops will have no stock. Life as we know it would instantly grind to a halt.

Remember when high streets were first pedestrianised? Exactly the same outcry. Closing the north side of Trafalgar Square in the capital was particularly controversial, with similar outrage across the country over motor vehicle restrictions.

Yes, it was a big shake-up – for the better. Who’d want to return to a situation where shoppers are forced onto the pavement to save being squished by traffic?

It isn’t naive to imagine similar improvements for cyclists in the not-too-distant future. There has been a significant shift in public opinion and the current death rate among cyclists has shocked the nation.

Decisive action is urgently needed, but at least we’re talking, and that’s a start.

Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly magazine