With the announcement of a new revision to the Highway Code, do the people of Cardiff think the city is safe enough for cyclists?
The Highway Code is to be reviewed by the UK government in an attempt to decrease the number of cycling fatalities.
Recommendations for the new code are expected to include the promotion of the ‘Dutch reach’, a way of turning and using the furthest hand away from the car door to open it. This will in turn force drivers to look behind and see if a cyclist or pedestrian is approaching.
The move comes after statistics released last month by Cycling UK show that over 100 cyclists died in 2017 due to road collisions.
Cardiff is a popular location for cyclists and according to the sustainable transport charity Sustrans last year, 57% of people in the area would either like to begin cycling or cycle more. However, only 34% of those surveyed classed Cardiff as a safe city for cyclists.
Do the people of Cardiff think the city is safe enough for cyclists?
Julia Chamberlain, 65, retired teacher, London
“I don’t think it’s particularly safe for cyclists because people don’t seem to have a tremendous regard for the rules of the road. However, of course, cyclists are a lot to blame themselves because they seem to feel they are neither pedestrian nor motorist and they make their own rules.”
Callum McCarthy, 20, Halfords technician, Gabalfa
“It’s safe to a certain extent. If you know what you’re doing with the bike then you’re safe. But saying that you get people who don’t stick to all the rules on the roads anyway – you get people driving like idiots.”
Jack Dougan, 25, bouncer, Oxford
“I think they’re trying to be [safer] but probably not, no. There’s a lot of cars in the city centre and no accessibility. I’m from Oxford where there’s lots of cycle tracks and bike racks and it’s quite accessible. The city centre there is predominantly pedestrianised but also for bikes as well. There doesn’t seem to be much room for that here.”
Elizabeth Rees, 74, retired, Rhondda Valley
“I am all for safety for cyclists because my grandchildren have got bicycles and my daughter rides a bicycle back and forth to work. You hear of these people getting knocked down because these car drivers have got no patience. I’m all for it.”
Lorna Jones, 24, teacher, Cardiff
“It’s fairly safe, I’d say. [Drivers] often go over the cycle lane but people don’t really get into too much trouble.”
Steve Saunders, 47, retail worker, Pontypridd
“For me, cycling is about getting away from the hustle and bustle, rather than driving into it. We drive into it because we have to, not because we want to. When I think about cycling, I think about my son being with me on a bike and I certainly wouldn’t bring him around here.”