Tuesday 1 December 2009

"Life Changing Injuries" on Cotham Hill

Cotham Hill, 11:30am, December 1. Crisp, and traffic free. Lovely.

Or is it? Why exactly is it traffic free? It looks like the road is closed and one bystander was talking about a group of police chasing someone down a side road.

What's that at the end? A lorry. One turning into the builders' merchants.

Why has it stopped?

The bike under the passenger front wheels provides a clue. Apparently while the lorry was doing a wide turn into the site, someone on a bicycle managed to end up under its wheels. At the scene, people were saying "broken leg", but the story is now that a woman cyclist has been left with life-changing injuries.

All we can say is that we hope that is not the case -that she does recover.


Chris Hutt said...

I hear that a Policeman in attendance said "she'll never cycle again".

Although it may be that the lorry driver was blameless in this instance I think we have to question whether lorries of that size should be making deliveries in narrow city streets with lots of cyclists and pedestrians.

We all make mistakes and misjudgements. With artculated lorries of that size it's difficult to judge how the vehicles going to move in a turn and the consequences of even a minor misjudgement can be horrific, as we saw today. Mixing such long lorries with cyclists and pedestrians is just too risky.

Bristol needs a transhipment point on the fringe so that goods transported in large lorries can be transhipped to smaller ones for delivery in the inner city. Such a system exists experimentally in Norwich and we really need something similar here. Small delivery vehicles could even be electric powered to minimise noise and pollution.

Quercus said...

And if we think it's bad at the moment, just wait for this...


I seriously hope she recovers.

BTW Chris, I think "Broadmead" does already operate a system like this (at least it used to).

Downfader said...

I think the trouble with removing lorries is that larger deliveries wont be able to be made in some instances. Firms are constantly told they need to cut emmissions and a lorry with a big delivery might well be more environmentally friendly than several smaller vehicles. In theory the lorry would also take up less space on the road.

As I said on the cycle forums the risks of cycles and lorries are well known - by us. Sadly those new to cycling or who dont frequent cycleforums wont be in the know. It really needs guys and girls on the ground to stop a few cyclists on a day and have a little chat like they've done in London.

Dru Marland said...

I posted on the EP comments, but they're being drowned in the noise and clutter of the hang 'em and flog 'em brigade... it's funny that the pro-vehicle types are ready to admit that the lorry driver's field of view is dangerously limited, but then they move to the conclusion that, therefore, the answer is for everyone else to take care not to get close to them.

In my days working on a ro-ro ferry, a lorry would not be allowed to move unless under the supervision of crew members decked out with hi-vis jackets, helmets and radios. Yet these charlies on Cotham Hill, which is, as we all know, one of the most bustling parts of town, regularly come and go apparently unaided. It's an accident that is no longer waiting to happen.

SteveL said...

That's a good point. On building sites they always supervise entry/exit of lorries, closing the road when needed.