The opinions of a TfL board member

A question from TfL board member Eva Lindholm at today’s board meeting.

Posted without comment.

Something struck me when I was reading [item] 2.2 on cycling accidents. Now this may be more of a philosophical point, and not fit for discussion today.

You mention a number of campaigns that are underway, targeting both drivers and cyclists, highlighting that every road user must look out for themselves, and each other, and follow the Highway Code to remain safe. Now of course drivers, through the licensing process and the Theory Test, demonstrate a knowledge of the Highway Code.

And we have drivers and cyclists intermingled on some pretty dramatically occupied roads like the Embankment, where you wonder whether it’s right to have such an imbalanced equation, with only one part of the population using the road demonstrating the knowledge of the Highway Code, and the other part of the population not.

And so my question is – as we’re all encouraging and expecting more cycling use – are we happy to live with this imbalance, and deal with the cyclist population in a purely voluntary way? Or are we thinking of it in some other way? Because it just strikes me as quite imbalanced.

Analysis of this welcome below.

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63 Responses to The opinions of a TfL board member

  1. “Eva Lindholm has over 25 years of experience in the financial services industry through various roles at JPMorgan, including Vice Chairman of JPMorgan Global Corporate bank, as well as extensive experience in the coverage of Public Sector institutions in Europe and the emerging markets.”

    So why is she in a position to be making these kinds of comments?

  2. I wonder if Ms Lindholm has considered:

    – that many cyclists will also have learned to drive, either in the UK or in their home country;
    – that not all drivers will have the same level of experience or qualification, depending on when and where they passed their test, and how long they have been driving for;
    – the different levels of risk posed by motorised and non-motorised transport;
    – that there are more illegally unlicensed drivers in the UK than legally uninsured cyclists.

    Frankly, I would have expected better levels of critical thinking and analysis, but it does speak to the fact that TfL don’t *get* cycling, institutionally, or appreciate the factors that are holding our transport system back compared to other cities.

  3. Andrea says:

    Why is she on the Board in the first place?

    • Joel C says:

      I think a good case could be made to ask what the qualifications are for a good few of the board, including Ms Lindholm. Reading through the list linked to above, only seven appear to have even vaguely relevant experience of transport and travel: two from the taxi business (“Big Taxi?”), two from the railways, one from air travel, one from logistics (i.e. the Lorry driver’s advocate) and another from err… travel agency. The rest are all bankers, accountants, professional politicians or management consultants.

      Most of them will probably be on multiple boards – membership of these things seems to be the modern equivalent of the aristocracy being given lucrative commissions in the armed forces and suchlike – a nice little earner for a few days work a year.

  4. Ian says:

    My first reaction is that there is indeed an indeed an imbalance, but it has more to do with the speed and weight of the machinery used than with peoples’ knowledge. Addressing that imbalance properly would be a useful thing.

    My second response is that many of the cyclists actually will have passed a UK or other EU driving test, and so will have exactly the same knowledge of the Highway Code as those in motor vehicles.

    My third response is that the knowledge of the Highway Code demonstrated by passing the driving test is both superficial and, for many of us, dated; in any case it provides no assurance that those who possess it will drive well, or even in accordance with the minimal standards required of them by the Highway Code.

    Finally, it does nothing to address the real problems, which are more to do with impatience, inattention, poor vehicle design and poor road design. None of these could be solved by knowledge of the Highway Code, not even by requiring everyone using the road to pass a test on it every morning.

  5. I think a background and current role in Wealth Management is an ideal position from which to be a TfL board member. Managing and cossetting high net worth individuals is clearly the background one needs to understand transport issues, eh?

  6. kruidig meisje says:

    The critical imbalance is not the variation in knowledge in the cyclist population. The critical factor in cyclinig accidents is the disbalance in kinetic energy. 0,5 * mass* speed-squared of a cyclist versus a HGV is tremendous. Couple that with the discrepency in defences in place (cyclist are VRU, any motor vehicle is a steel cage) and the outcome of any clash between the two is easily predicted. So the main efforts should be to prevent the clashes, to greatly reduce the chance of any clashes happening at all (and certainly above certain speeds and masses involved).
    Knowledge MIGHT lead to behaviour (not necessarily, as any pshychologist can tell you. But also bankers must be aware of that now), but the impact is usually little. Not what we are aiming for with the above scenario. So aiming for better knowledge is a non-critical-path action.
    Segregation (and speedlimits and HGV bans and filtered permeability) are in the useful-action box.

    • inge says:

      Oh kruidig meisje! You use much to much difficult words and notions to get through to poor little Eva Lindholm. She would never comprehend the difference between a bike and a HGV .
      I must say, since reading this question from this TfL member I understand better now why nothing will change for cyclists and pedestrians in London and maybe the whole of the U.K.

  7. paul gannon says:

    If there is such a high level of knowledge of the Highway Code among motorists, why is it that very, very few motorists respect the instruction to motorists to allow pedestrians to cross the road into which a motorist is turning? Why have the police and JPs allowed this to happen? Why have politicians, police, engineers, TfL board members, etc., encouraged road design which encourages motorists to almost universally ignore this provision of the Highway Code?

    • Barnie says:

      likewise speeding, crossing ASLs, giving cyclists the same space as a car, etc., etc., etc..

    • Absolutely! An important question is why have highway designers allowed it to happen? The perceived need to allow to consistent traffic flow has meant that corners have become increasingly oblique allowing vehicle speed to be maintained when taking the corner. if a motorist can take a corner at 30mph s/he will regardless of the poor sucker trying to cross with a double buggy and a dog!

  8. On reflection, wouldn’t it make sense for all TfL staff and board members to do one day’s Bikeability training as part of their induction? After all, I’d expect them all to have walked, used the tube and got a cab in London at some point. How can they ‘balance the demands’ of all road users without at least some knowledge of what those demands are? Perhaps if they knew what it felt like to ‘take the lane’ through Vauxhall gyratory they might be less happy to suggest it as an option.

  9. First lets worry about getting all the drivers without tax, insurance or licences off the roads, they are surely a bigger concern than whether or not cyclists know what they are doing. If you can’t do that, keep them out of the City as much as you can. Cycling is pretty intuitive in general and really only requires the desire to stay alive.
    As usual, someone who clearly doesn’t ride a bike feels the need to chip in. Maybe she should go and talk to the Mayor of Bogota.
    There’s a depressing amount of supposedly important and influential people who would rather we all drive cars than deal with the idea that the roads need to accommodate cyclists safely. I don’t want to drive a car, even if you gave me one.

  10. In a recent police action in Bristol, they stopped lots of cyclists going through red lights etc, and lots of motorists stopped in the ASL box. The response of most of the motorists was that they didn’t know that they shouldn’t stop in the box. So it doesn’t look as if the motorists know the highway code either.

    • Barnie says:

      When I was bike commuting to work a year or so ago, I came across two Met Police cars that had needlessly and illegally crossed ASLs…

  11. Alan Davies says:

    It is important that drivers know which laws they are breaking at any given moment!

  12. Wow, the diversity of that board has blown me away. Showing that TfL is essentially a big business rather than the governing authority looking after the interests of all Londoners.

  13. zvileve says:

    Well, additional educational efforts are certainly to be welcomed. Learning how to properly ride a bike should be part of the mandatory school curriculum for all children.

    ‘Licencing’ on the other hand is well known to be counter productive – unless the goal is to reduce cycling! We licence vehicule drivers because they are operating dangerous machinery; riding a bike is not any more dangerous than walking. Would madame Lindholm also recommend that we license pedestrians?

  14. Dean says:

    A huge amount of people drive and ride bikes, and therefore know the highway code anyway. I agree with all other commenters asking how and why board members are accepted on to the board when their level of knowledge seems so limited.

  15. Antony says:

    I’ve been thinking for a while about how cycling has become “vehicularised” and this seems to fit that pattern perfectly. Bikes are being treated like cars. You can see it in calls for increased regulation and training, penalties for cyclists with no lights, or the assumption that if a pedestrian and cyclist collide, the pedestrian will come off worse.

    Perhaps it’s a reflection of the substantial emotional and financial investment that people put into driving. The idea that there’s a cheaper, easier, healthier, less regulated alternative doesn’t sit well with some, and they’d rather you were equally entangled in legislative constraints.

    It’s also comforting to imagine that regulation brings additional safety, that people breaking traffic rules will be identified, caught and punished, and that effective training makes us all safer. To some extent this is true – if you compare the road safety records of say, the UK and Bangladesh – but it’s not done much to make the environment more welcoming for non-motorised users.

    • Antony says:

      I should add, you get a lot of cyclists who think like this too. I’ve seen so many comments along the lines of “I’d happily pay for a bike licence if it made other road users respect us”.

  16. farnie1 says:

    Does address why so many pedestrians are being hurt and killed. Does she propose mandatory highway code tests for all? Even those walking? I suspect this is somewhat of an infringement on human rights. To curtail your ability to walk anywhere unless you have shown competence in walking? And from what I have seen recently many of those pedestrians are being hurt by TfL bus mirrors. Is she suggesting in some way it is the fault of those pedestrians for not having a thorough knowledge of the Highway Code?

    • Joel C says:

      I think that’s a notion often broached on this blog (variations of it) – *no-one* in their right mind would *dare* suggest licensing walking or a requirement to know the highway code, yet bikes are seen as fair game.

      As one of other commentators alludes to, at the moment bicycles are treated like pseudo-cars whereas they are closer to pedestrians, in terms of vulnerability and agility. Hence the calls for testing, licensing, insurance and tax, are nothing to do with competency or fairness – really they’re all about making people on bikes “suffer” like motor vehicles.

  17. Barnie says:

    Andrew Gilligan should write up a FAQ document, and all and any people in appropriate positions who ask daft questions which have already been answered millions of times over the last few decades should be questioned over their ability to function in their positions.
    Then maybe people could focus on the priorities.

  18. The premise of this starts from an incorrect point.
    Roads have been around slightly longer than cars and historically the need for a Highway code (introduced in 1931) was unnecessary.

    It came about because cars kill and there was a need to show that, you as a driver, had the ability and knowledge to control a potential death trap. The Highway code is in place to stop drivers killing people.

    The concern also seems to be grounded in the physical damage that a bicycle can do to a car. There is no call to have pedestrians learn the highway code. Then again, they are not perceived as something that can scratch a car, and to a certain extent, pedestrians can be ignored by cars, where as a bicyle has to share the space with a car even though 1000s of pedestrian die in car crashes each year.

    What is probably needed is for cycling to be part of educating our children.

    This is a form of transportism. The onus really is on the car driver to drive by the highway code. It was introduced to give the car driver rules to drive by.

  19. Paul M says:

    I wonder what Eva Lindholm’s senior colleagues at JP Morgan would have to say about her intervention? Like most City of London firms, it is a fair bet that a significant proportion of its staff, at every level of seniority, cycles to work. That’s partly because of the type of people they are (active, competitive, health conscious) and partly because long hours and unsocial working times mean that public transport may not be available when they need it so a bike is a flexible alternative.

    It is also more than likely that these collegues know the Highway code every bit as awell as the drivers Ms Lindholm observes because, like them, they also drive. they also have driving licences, have passed a driving test. In fact, more than 80% of cyclists also drive, and cyclists are more likely to be drivers than non-cyclists. They are just not dumb enough to waste their time driving around London at average speeds of about 9 mph.

    The Chief exec of my own City institution cycles to work, as does the senior tax partner and several other board members. It would not surprise me in the least if Ms Lindholm’s boss cycles to work, and I don’t imagine he would be thrilled to read her comments.

  20. Angus H says:

    She’s right on one point – on a major through road like Embankment, it’s clearly a bad idea to mix semi-trained cyclists (NOT untrained – any cyclist will have at least the same level of training as a pedestrian, which is far more than zero – just that most of this training takes place at a very young age, before you realise it’s happening). So this is a place where segregated lanes should be built, and TfL themselves recognise that.

    However, on roads that are not main thoroughfares, the correct response is to operate them in such a way that they are forgiving to the less-trained and the less-well-protected. Space for cycling, space for kids, space for pedestrians, space for people to play the damn fool if they feel like it – nobody really needs to be driving on residential roads at 30 or even 20.. use the main road, that’s what it’s for. Congested? that’s because there are just too many cars – and if you’re in one, you’re part of the problem.

    I’d of course advise any cyclist, or pedestrian, to know the Highway Code, but that shouldn’t be an excuse to drop the aspiration towards building a network where they don’t need to. It’s much the same as the helmet debate really. Unless there’s an economically essential reason to do otherwise, streets should be “Fine for an 8 year old”, not just “Fine if you keep your wits about you”.

    • AlexBB says:

      I think the kids point is the definitive one. Children don’t drive cars because they don’t have money, or the judgement to control something as dangerous as a car. As a result they cant move around and are prisoners in their home and their parents become their jailers.That imprisons the parents and makes them “taxi drivers” for there kids. So in effect 2 of 3 generation have their freedom curtailed. It is kind of collective madness…..

  21. Is there anyway that these comments can be sent to her with a request that she addresses them?

  22. Charlie Holland says:

    According to the introduction, ‘The Highway Code is essential reading for everyone’ so clearly any responsible headteacher will ensure it is part of their school curriculum and test understanding of it there.

  23. Mike Chalkley says:

    No commentator here has hit the nail on the head – it’s simply that she’s a stupid tw*t!

    • Mike, the problem is that she speaks for the majority. All she has done is make a comment worthy of a Daily Mail reader in language designed to sound clever. To us she is stupid but we are the minority the majority will think she’s bang on.

    • Angus H says:

      Attack the ideas, not the (wo)man. Her ideas are stupid and tw*tty.

    • Possibly stupid, I don’t know her and so can’t comment on that, but very definitely igornant. It’s an important distinction. And if she’s this ignorant on a topic of such importance, what the hell is she doing on the TFL board?

    • Paul M says:

      I am sure she is anything but stupid – she wouldn’t have risen to the senior levels of a multinational investment bank if she was.

      But she is evidently ignorant. Only in the sense that probably most British people are ignorant when it comes to cycling matters, but nevertheless, such ignorance is not excusable in a TfL director. If she were (perhaps is) a non-exec director of a listed company, she would be expected to understand her company and she could be exposed to censure – or worse – if she did not.

      • dave lambert says:

        I don’t care how high up the slippery pole she’s climbed it doesn’t mean she’s not stupid. She on the board of the largest transport body in the country and yet she’s done no research on the subject. But that didn’t stop her from flapping her gums about it.

        This is the behaviour of a stupid person. Intelligent people know how little they know so they research a topic before sticking their oar in. Stupid people think they know it all so will happily barge in with no research or prior knowledge

  24. These are the comments of a TFL board member????!!!! One would have hoped that a person in such a position would realise that the vast majority of cyclists do have a driving license – and even among those who don’t (such as myself) many have had training of some description. In my case that was a cycling proficiency test which did include studying the highway code. What’s frightening is the utter ignorance displayed by such a comment.

  25. Felix the cat. says:

    All the studies of car/bike collisions I have found show that the fault lies with the driver three times out of four. To me this shows that either passing a driving test does not produce safe driving, or that the test is not hard enough.

    http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2009/dec/15/cycling-bike-accidents-study

    With adult cyclists, police found the driver solely responsible in about 60%-75% of all cases, and riders solely at fault 17%-25% of the time.

    http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/public/cyclesafety/article3758677.ece

    The City of Westminster Council found that drivers were to blame for 68 per cent of collisions between cyclists and motor vehicles in the borough in the past 12 months. It found that cyclists were at fault for only 20 per cent. In the remaining 12 per cent of cases, no cause could be found or both parties were to blame.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/cars-to-blame-in-most-accidents-involving-bicycles-says-research-calling-for-new-passing-rules/story-e6frg6nf-1225958334292

    Drivers were at fault in 87 per cent of incidents with cyclists and most did not realise they had behaved in a reckless or unsafe manner, according to the Monash University Accident Research Centre and The Amy Gillett Foundation.

    The AA Foundation for Road Safety Research found much the sam.

    I think these studies show that the theories about cycling deaths discussed above are borne out in practice.

  26. nilling says:

    My knowledge of the HC as a cyclist is encyclopedic, especially compared to what it was when I only drove. Unless all road users have to take the Theory Test regularly her comments are irrelevant.

  27. Jitensha Oni says:

    Hmm. One can’t in all honesty argue that there isn’t an imbalance that needs to be corrected in the UK. The imbalance is that it is unacceptably unsafe for minors to cycle on even residential streets in the UK. However, most current UK cyclists (the figure of 80% is one often quoted) have a driving license, so any imbalance on knowledge of the HC is likely to be fairly small. Another thing though, what about tourists and other foreign visitors and immigrants? Should they be required to sit a UK driving test or at least display a knowledge of the HC before being allowed to get on a bicycle in the UK? Seems a bit restrictive. Either TfL have not told her any of this, which I find hard to believe; she has not been listening; or the quote is pure disingenuousness.

    It’s a bit like Galileo really. In one corner we have a (Galilean) position saying lets go 8-80, in which case you have to protect those that might not be able to follow the Highway Code to the letter. Non-cyclists who want to cycle but are “too scared” for themselves ot their kids are implicitly in this camp. On the other you have a set of people who know very well that a lot of people would cycle if the conditions were suitable and that it would be beneficial, but for the sake of a lot of vested interests, the Great Spirit of the Motor Car must be seen to be propitiated, even if it is clearly inferior science/art. The best way of doing this is to keep hammering away at the party line, raising red herrings (is that possible?), feigning ignorance in public – and it seems there’s always someone new who can fill that role – or being downright aggressive. Eppure ciclismo risolve tanti problemi (or something).

  28. rdrf says:

    An old git writes: many years ago I wrote some pieces for the London Cycling Campaign’s magazine, entitled “Great Motoring Myths”.

    A central one is that because motorists have “taken a test” they have one up (or what the lady concerned here would call being part of an “imbalance”) on cyclists, and presumably pedestrians.

    I think the point to make is that this is at best a minimal control or regulation over the peculiarly destructive potential of the motorist. As some above point out, it doesn’t stop flagrant rule and law breaking by these people who have “passed the test”.

    But it gets worse. If a lot of attention is paid to “the test” being a basically desirable thing, and that you become a responsible adult (“Real man”, “Independent woman” etc.) by passing it, then you erode the already minimal benefits you get from it through the pride and sense of entitlement that those who have passed it take on. In short, “the test” becomes part of the problem.

    (I make this point at some length in “Death on the Streets: cars and the mythology of road safety”)

    Now, this doesn’t mean that a better test (re-taken to rule out the more incompetent every three years, expressing the duty of care of the motorist towards cyclists and pedestrians more clearly etc.) shouldn’t be taken. Nor that people shouldn’t have high quality bicycle confidence training.

    It just means that it isn’t really any kind of control or proper regulation over danger from the motorised, This needs to happen in order to get some real move to balancing out the relative danger to others that motorists, as compared to cyclists, pose.

    Finally, the fact that an otherwise highly intelligent person can come out with this nonsense shows just how pervasive – and dangerous – “road safety” ideology is.

  29. Tim says:

    My view, repeating several points made above….

    It is true that cyclists will often also have a driving licence (as I do), but since this cannot be guaranteed in every case and is not required by law, it is a distraction and not strictly relevant to the question.

    Some studies have indeed shown drivers to be at fault more often than cyclists in conflict between the two but again this overcomplicates matters and is not strictly relevant to the question.

    The only answer to Ms Lindholm’s question is to explain that a driver, by definition, is responsible for over a ton of steel, and an engine powerful enough to accelerate that mass of steel to speeds of over 100mph, on public land which will often be densely populated.

    A cyclist is not (by definition) responsible for any device powered by anything more than their own two legs, any more than a pedestrian is*.

    That is why drivers require licences and tests, but cyclists don’t.

    The fact that this is not obvious to Ms Lindholm beggars belief, and I can only imagine her confusion stems from the fact that the infrastructure SHE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR forces the two modes of transport together inappropriately.

    The ignorance is astounding, and like others I would be interested to know how board members are selected and appointed.

    * So of course farnie1 and Adam are bang on when they contrast with the suggestion of a walking licence. I also like Adam’s point that some clarity comes from consideration of the historical development of the current system.

    • Tim says:

      Probably poor form to reply to myself, but an addition from an item in the Cambridge News today.

      “[16-year-old cyclist Beth McDermott] was taken to Addenbrooke’s with life-threatening injuries, where her condition deteriorated and she died overnight.

      No-one in either of the vehicles, a yellow Peugeot 307 and a grey Audi A3 TDI, was injured.”

      That, Eva Lindholm, is why drivers require licences and tests, but cyclists don’t.

  30. rdrf says:

    Me again: Re what used to be called “The Licence to Kill”:

    ORDINARY AVERAGE MOTORIST: “Why don’t you cyclists have to have a licence?”
    CYCLIST: ” We still wouldn’t be able to kill people as easily as you can”.

    the late Alan Leng, Secretary of the CTC in the 1980s,used to say to questioners: “Well, it didn’t stop you breaking the law and the recommendations of the Highway Code, did it?”. A shorter version was: “It didn’t do much good with you, did it?”

    Dr Robert Davis, Chair, Road Danger Reduction Forum

  31. pm says:

    I’m unconvinced that most drivers have more than a vague awareness of the highway code. I believe most of them learn just enough to get through the test then immediately forget it, substituting an experience-based set of ‘rules’ that all boil down to “its OK if I can consistently get away with it”.

    In particular, as a pedestrian, I find the second paragraph of Rule 170 seems to have slipped out of most motorists’ minds entirely.

    Maybe there should be ‘spot quizes’ for drivers?

  32. On the one hand, Lindholm’s comment begs the question why we shouldn’t have licences and special training for pedestrians. On the other hand, that’s not an adequate response to her argument, because **there’s a sense in which since the 50’s we already do have licences and special training for pedestrians**. The premise of that training is that a roadway belongs to motor traffic. Marginal areas may be provided for pedestrians, and transit between those areas is to obey rules that codify and minimise what responsibility drivers of motorised traffic may be expected to bear for causing death and injury. Thus: ‘but she didn’t cross at the lights’ ‘how could I be expected to take avoiding action?’ *they aren’t supposed to be there*. In effect, the way serious pedestrian injuries are handled means that pedestrians can be licensed (crossing in the ‘right’ place, wearing bright clothing, etc), or unlicensed, where the premise of the license is that the roadway belongs to motor vehicles. This general philosophy is then extended to cyclists, who in addition to the out-group status you describe n this blog, are also treated as quasi-pedestrians. Hence the prejudice that cyclists should ride in the gutter, that being the place between, neither roadway nor footway. — In sum, if you want to oppose the argument for bike licences, maybe you need to do something about the extent to which we already have a system of pedestrian licences, which treats urban roadkill as guilty until proven innocent of inconveniencing a driver.

  33. Whilst its true that Eva’s comments demonstrate her lack of knowledge on the subject, in some ways I rather like the idea that there may be an assumption that those on bikes don’t understand the highway code.
    Cycling should be available to any person who can physically operate a bicycle from age 5 – 95. We should be aiming to have a situation where children can safely ride independently from the age of 8.
    Of course, children will not have the opportunity or the cognitive development to study the highway code. And part of the problem at the moment is that there’s an expectation that cyclists should ride defensively, aggressively and this is necessary to be safe. This is why their such an obvious lean towards males age 30 -50 in cycling demographics.

    Some of the terrible tragedies involving cyclists killed by left turning HGV’s seem to bring out lots of debate around cyclists filtering up the left of large vehicles. Well, why should cyclists know they shouldn’t do that? They didn’t introduce the danger to the road and theirs a painted sign on the road telling them thats where they should be. I’d been riding for all my adult life and was completely oblivious to this danger until I joined CycleChat forum and started to learn about cycle craft.

    Infrastructure needs to be in place that makes cycling safe for all, so that passing a driving test or bikeability becomes irrelevant.

    • Barnie says:

      Left turning HGVs… While it obviously makes sense for people cyclists included, to look after themselves, How the hell are these vehicles and drivers allowed on the road when they very publicly and repeatedly admit that they cannot see where they’re going!?

  34. The legal requirement for anyone operating a motor vehicle on UK roads has a very clear basis behind it. That basis is that by operating such vehicles you are operating something that has significant potential to cause serious injury or death. The licencing requirement arose from this and from bitter experience of increasing fatalities on roads. In fact, since the law was introduced it has only been suspended once, and that was during World War 2.

    Contrast this sharply with operating a pedal cycle. The potential to cause harm is significantly less, and the potential to cause death is even less so. Not saying that this doesn’t happen, but the facts speak for themselves on this matter. A significant proportion (though not all) adult cyclists have either had some sort of cycle proficiency training or are driving licence holders themselves, and many child cyclists have also had Bikeability training.

    Not only that, cyclists (like other highway users) are expected to comply with the requirements of the Highway Code. While the Code itself has little legal basis – apart from those parts of it that are a legal requirement – not complying with it is a major factor in assuming liability.

    So, yes Ms Lindholm, we have considered this philosophical question. It has been answered, and this is reflected in law. Is that good enough for you?

  35. Roger Kingsnorth says:

    I am a cyclist and a driver. I passed my driving test 50 years ago and my knowledge of the Highway Code has not been tested since. No guarantee that my knowledge is still thorough!
    Also, police statistics show that in only 4% of collisions, the cyclist has broken the law/Highway Code. The assertion that there is an imbalanceof knowledge at the root of cycling accidents is nonsense.

  36. When I was at primary school the RoSPA Cycling proficiency test was mandatory for all those who wished to cycle to school. This covered the highway code.

    Additionally, a few years before that we had the Tufty Club that taught us to cross the road safely so there was a two layer introduction to road use before the age of 10.

  37. remerson says:

    What happened next in the meeting, after Ms Lindholm’s unfortunate remarks? Did any other board member — perhaps someone with an actual clue — set her straight?

  38. Peter Clinch says:

    Pn FB the other day I saw someone had shared this… http://humour.200ok.com.au/swearing-at-work.php
    Item 1 seems apposite.

  39. Watdabni says:

    I hope Ms. Lindholm is reading these comments. More to the point I echo the questions of others as to what particular expertise qualifies her to be on the TfL Board? Also is there anyone on the board who can properly represent cyclist’s interests? If not, why not? And, if not, I have 40 years cycling experience in this city and would be very happy to be such a representative on the Board!

  40. Herbie says:

    Well, as 76% of cyclists also drive this statement is almost irrelevant, especially when consider that 81% of cyclist/driver accidents are the drivers fault. Stop blaming the victims!

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