Cycling charity wants the next government to close driving ban loophole.

The cycling charity Cycling UK is calling for changes to government policy following a reportwhich allows some drivers who have 12 points on their license for driving offences to continue driving.

The organisation has responded to a report which makes 14 recommendations on how to improve the UK’s highway safety for all road users and especially vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclist’s.  The main focus of the report highlights the need to close the legal loophole that currently allows 8,500 drivers to continue to drive despite having 12 points, which would normally initiate an immediate six month driving ban.

Cycling UK are urging all political parties to make road safety a priority and include their recommendations into their manifestos.

Cycling UK’s Senior Road Safety and Legal Campaigns officer, Duncan Dollimore, said:

“Last year, national headlines lamented the tragic case of cyclist Lee Martin, whose death was in part a consequence of the justice system putting one person’s right to drive above the safety of other road users.

“Rightly this cross-party group of MPs and Peers has identified the problems that affect us all – whether we’re driving, cycling or walking – and made sensible recommendations to make our roads safer.

“Cycling UK welcomes the ambition of the report’s recommendations, and believes it should set the road safety agenda for the next Government. We hope politicians of all parties will be able to support them, and work together to prevent avoidable and dangerous incidents on our roads.”

Due to a recent spate of accidents due to mobile phone use or repeat offenders, the charity feels that drivers should no longer be able to use the plea of exceptional hardship to avoid a driving ban.  It hopes that by increasing the numbers of driving bans, it will send a clear message to road users that excessive speed or repeated motoring offences has real consequences and will act as a deterrent.

The report revealed that the number of driving bans being handed out has fallen over the last 10 years by a whopping 62%, mainly due to exceptional hardship pleas.

The report also makes the following recommendations:

  • Police forces should recognise the value of video evidence from cyclists’ on-bike video cameras
  • Serious driving offences should be prosecuted as dangerous rather than careless driving.
  • There should be a UK wide scheme which targets drivers who overtake too closely or drive aggressively at or towards cyclist’s.
  • There should be a change to the highway code to promote road awareness of vulnerable road users especially for lorry drivers.

The report stated: “The justice system is failing to protect cyclists, both by allowing dangerous and inconsiderate driving to go unchecked, and by letting down the victims of road crashes,

“The licence to drive is a privilege, not a right,

“We believe that hundreds of thousands of crimes – committed by a small minority of road users – are going unrecorded by the police each year, resulting in a feeling of lawlessness and aggression that is deterring many people from cycling.”

Cycling accidents can be devastating.  A cyclist is often left dazed and confused after an accident and it is important to try and get witnesses to give you their details if they saw what happened and contact the Police immediately. If you or a loved one has been involved in a road traffic accident and you believe the fault is with the other road user then call us now on 01625 506 672 for an informal chat with one of our specialist cycle accident solicitors.

We are experts in accidents involving cyclists and can talk you through your potential compensation claim.