Cycling on the pavement shows high risks, too

PUBLISHED: 10:34 01 March 2007 | UPDATED: 15:01 12 May 2010

AS a cyclist I have some sympathy with concerns over cycling on the pavement (Postbag, February15 and February 22), but there are several points worth bearing in mind. First, we have the problem that many councils, including Royston s are busy encouraging

AS a cyclist I have some sympathy with concerns over cycling on the pavement (Postbag, February15 and February 22), but there are several points worth bearing in mind.

First, we have the problem that many councils, including Royston's are busy encouraging cyclists to cycle on the pavement by slapping down white paint and calling it a shared use facility.

Is it any wonder many cyclists get the idea that pavements are for cycling?

Eleanor Smyth and Anne Peverett suggest people might cycle there because of safety concerns.

In fact, accident statistics not only show that cycling is safer than walking, but that regular cyclists live longer, healthier lives.

Research consistently shows you are 3-5 times more likely to have an accident on a pavement than on the road. The pavement risks are especially high crossing driveways and side roads.

Jane Bye believes pedestrians are at serious risk of being killed or injured. In fact, according to Government figures, one pedestrian is killed on the pavement every four years by a cyclist while in the same period about 200 are killed on the pavements by motor vehicles (and another 300 on pedestrian crossings). So she is right, but not because of pavement cyclists.

Let's encourage more people to cycle, but on the roads, as a safe and healthy activity that is also environmentally friendly.

DR TONY RAVEN

The Old Orchard

Chapel Lane, Melbourn


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