Saturday - 20 December 2014

FTA calls on MPs to reject HGV rush hour ban

Published: 27 November 2013  04:24 PM
Industry Channel: Transport & Distribution 

The Freight Transport Association has written to the House of Commons Transport Committee’s “Cycling safety: follow up” inquiry, urging more to be done to improve the safety of cyclists on our streets.

But it said that banning HGVs during peak hours is not the answer to improve the safety of cyclists in London, and is now underlining this point.

The association has already responded to several politicians and cycling campaign groups, who advocated the banning of lorries from London in the rush hour, following a recent rise in cyclist casualties throughout the city.

The FTA believes that any ban on HGVs at peak times would not be feasible, and would both increase the cost of living in cities, while decreasing economic activity.

“The HGV plays a crucial role in allowing our cities to function, and those who call for it to be banned do so without any thought for how the goods needed every day would get through,” said FTA’s head of urban logistics and regional policy, Christopher Snelling.

“The impact of such a ban would be to substantially increase the cost of living in cities, decrease economic activity, and to increase pollution and congestion.

“Given that the London Mayor’s Cycling Commissioner has said that a rush hour lorry ban would only have affected two of the 14 fatalities in London this year, it does not appear to be the simple solution to all our problems that some advocates believe.”

The association however said it recognises that the logistics industry must continue to improve its performance, to respond to the increased number of cyclists on the road.

But it said public authorities have the responsibility to provide good quality infrastructure, information, and education to make cycling safer on our streets.

“We must all do more to improve safety, but banning HGVs is a simplistic response with massive economic and transport impacts and an un-quantified safety case,” added Snelling.

“Any measures taken should be intelligent, targeted and evidence based if we are to improve safety while allowing our cities to function.”

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