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Bradford cyclists in appeal forb safety schemes
Cycling chiefs in Bradford have condemned the Government for cutting dedicated road safety funding as new figures reveal the number of casualties involving bike riders across the country have increased by ten per cent.
Department for Transport statistics show the number of cyclist accidents increased from 3,775 between January and March last year to 4,160 this year and the number of cyclists killed or seriously injured on Britain’s roads rose by 13 per cent.
Although there are no figures available for Bradford, Simon D’Vali, chairman of the West Yorkshire Casualty Reduction Partnership and Member of the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS), said it was making “great efforts” to cut casualties.
“In West Yorkshire, we are making great efforts to combat the effects of reduced budgets by working in partnership with the Integrated Transport Authority and other agencies to ensure we maximise what we have to best effect,” he said.
“We are currently posing questions to the Government in light of these findings around the decision to remove dedicated road safety funding. However, the Government must heed these early warning signs and react before we see casualties rise further.”
Dan Goodey, British Cycling’s recreation manager for Yorkshire and organiser of Bradford’s Sky Ride Local, said it was important for the road network to develop in line with an increase in cyclists sparked by Team GB’s success in the Olympics.
“Safety for cyclists is our number one priority,” he said.
The DoT figures also show the number of motorcyclists seriously injured rose by eight per cent from 1,024 to 1,110 and the number of children killed or seriously injured in road accidents rose by nine per cent from 522 to 570.
But the number of car users killed or seriously injured dropped by four per cent, from 2,227 to 2,140.
Simon Best, chief executive, of the Institute of Advanced Motorists, said: “Cutting road safety education, scrapping casualty targets and cuts in council spending all suggest this isn’t a major priority.”