Survey reveals two thirds of UK drivers feel endangered by aggressive cyclists


According to a recent survey, nearly two thirds of drivers feel that aggressive cyclists endanger their safety.

In a survey of 2,010 UK drivers, 60 per cent said aggressive cyclists pose a greater concern today than they did three years ago.

The IAM RoadSmart data comes after 494 cyclists died on British roads in car-cyclist collisions between 2012 and 2021.

Comparatively, four people who were inside cars died in similar accidents over the same time period, according to data from the Department of Transportation.

However, 61 per cent of respondents said they would not support a legislation that assumes drivers are always to blame for crashes with pedestrians or cyclists in populated areas.

The IAM RoadSmart charity’s director of strategy and research emphasized that there was “no quick fix” to the “daily conflicts” between motorists and cyclists.

Neil Greig said: “The Government has introduced a range of laws in recent years in an effort to fix the daily conflicts we see between motorists and cyclists.

“However, if our research is anything to go by, this has largely been to no avail, with the majority of respondents still reporting aggression and conflict among road users.

“There is no quick-fix to this issue, but our research sheds light on the urgent need for the Government to maintain its education campaigns on the new Highway Code, and continue to invest in safe road markings for more vulnerable road users to minimise the chance of conflict wherever possible.

“In the meantime, all road users, whether on two or four wheels, should exercise calmness and restraint to help us all use Britain’s roads safely.”

After the implementation of new regulations last year, British judges are now able to impose life terms on reckless and dangerous drivers who cause fatalities while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Two months later, the then-transport secretary Grant Shapps made a commitment to enact a law against “death by dangerous cycling” that would penalize murderous riders similarly to negligent drivers.

The IAM RoadSmart poll found that nearly four out of five respondents believed that aggressive driving endangered their safety.

Eight percent of all traffic fatalities—108 collision deaths—were caused by aggressive driving in 2021.

Duncan Dollimore, head of campaigns at charity Cycling, said: “There’s no excuse for aggressive behaviour – people can behave badly no matter what mode of transport they’re using.

“The consequences are however disproportionate, with statistics showing poor driving far more likely to lead to a fatality or serious injury.

“The Highway Code changed last year to emphasise the additional responsibility those in charge of larger vehicles, because they were more likely to cause harm if there is a collision.”

The Highway Code was changed to reflect a hierarchy of road users based on their level of vulnerability.

It means that motorists are more accountable for keeping an eye out for individuals on bicycles, on foot, or on horses.

Also, drivers were advised to give cyclists at least 1.5 meters of distance while passing them at up to 30 mph, and more room at higher speeds.

Mr Dollimore added: “Cycling UK has repeatedly called for a long-term well-funded public awareness campaign by the Government to ensure that the changes are better communicated and understood, which in turn will make our roads safer for everyone.”


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