Statistics from the Department for Transport (DfT) have revealed a rise in cyclist casualties in Q1.
From January to March 2012, the number of cyclist casualties rose ten per cent to 4,160 from 3,775. The number of cyclists killed or seriously injured increased 13 per cent compared to Q1 2011, with 700 killed or seriously injured, compared to 621.
While the rise may correspond with growth in the number of cyclists on the road, the figures are still a cause for concern according to Sustrans, the Institute of Advanced Motorist (IAM) and other organisations.
“These accident rates should ring another alarm bell at the top of government," said Sustrans policy director Jason Torrance.
“Our Olympic success is no doubt going to inspire more of us to get out on two wheels. The government must prioritise making our roads safe for the most vulnerable users, or we risk making cycling seem too dangerous for everyday travel.”
IAM chief executive Simon Best also commented on the statistics: “It is unacceptable that road deaths and serious injuries have risen for children, pedestrians, motorcyclists and cyclists.
“Cutting road safety education, scrapping casualty targets and cuts in council spending all suggest this isn’t a major priority. The government needs to show much greater leadership on road safety.
“Last year’s increase in people killed was a serious warning, but this could be the start of a trend.
“More must be done to get drivers to look out for vulnerable road users. We must have changes to the driving test, greater enforcement and incentives for driver training.”