is too soon to know whether the fall in cycling casualties in
2013 represents the start of a long-term reduction in the numbers
of cyclists killed or seriously injured on our roads. We hope
that this is the case, but do not think there is any cause for
the Government to be complacent. As we stated in 2012, a cross-departmental
effort is required to improve safety for cyclists. We remain concerned
that, despite the warm words of the Prime Minister, this coordinated
working has not yet materialised.
64. There is
also limited evidence of a widespread culture that is supportive
of cyclists as road users. Progress in developing this culture
will inevitably vary across different areas of the country, reflecting
local road use and support for cycling, but there remains a role
of the Government in enabling this culture to flourish and making
it easier for local authorities to introduce cycle safety measures.
Above all, it is for the Government, and regional and local authorities,
to use all the tools at their disposal to promote the sharing
of the road between drivers and cyclists.
65. Making the roads safe for cyclists
requires adherence to the rules of those roads, from both cyclists
and drivers, and the development of a mutual respect between the
two. Improving cycling infrastructure can help to improve this
behaviour and culture; and we call on the Department to show leadership
in this area, in particular through the development of consistent
design standards for local areas and guidance on how local authorities
can design roads safe for cyclists and pedestrians, while still
reflecting local need and circumstance. It is the duty of Government
ministers to ensure that all government policies reflect the fundamental
understanding of cycling as a valid form of transport, and promotes
the safety of all road users.