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Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver



 
 
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  #1  
Old March 13th 12, 08:25 PM posted to uk.rec.cycling
Bertie Wooster[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,958
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...-street-design

=====Quote=====

On Tuesday this week an eight-year-old boy, Ali Nasralla, was
tragically killed while cycling home from school in the borough of
Kingston.

Tragedy is an overused word, but try reading the sad messages in the
video above from his Year 3 schoolfriends without feeling a well of
emotion.

According to witnesses, the fatal crash took place outside shops on a
side street, near the busy A3 Kingston Bypass.

At around 3.45pm on Monday the young boy, who was being accompanied by
a nanny and his sister, was hit by a black taxi just a few hundred
metres from Robin Hood Primary School.

Ali was air-lifted to St Georges Hospital in Tooting, but died the
following day.

It’s impossible to know the extraordinary pain the boy’s family must
be suffering, but one can’t help wonder if this pain is being
compounded by wondering if they did something wrong in allowing their
son to cycle to school, even accompanied.

We can imagine that Ali desperately wanted to cycle (kids at that age
love their bikes with a passion), and the parents probably thought the
risk was negligible.

Whatever their thoughts, the the parents in this awful case will know
the Mayor of London Boris Johnson is supporting them, because it was
less than two years ago that he wrote a rather gung-ho article in The
Telegraph hailing the “heroes” who let their children cycle to school.

His article was strongly supportive of a couple in Dulwich that
allowed their children, aged 5 and 8, to cycle less than a mile to
school (on the pavement, in this instance) against the wishes of the
headteacher.

What’s telling about Johnson’s article is that in boisterously
supporting these parents in their fight against the “barmy” world of
“elf and safety” and “political correctness”, he barely mentions the
unacceptable levels of road danger in the streets over which he
himself has so much power.

He proudly points out that “London is now one of the safest big cities
on earth, with youth violence down 10 percent over the past two years,
robbery down 20 percent – and the murder rate the lowest since 1978”.

This is clearly something of a smoke and mirrors trick, because the
biggest danger to primary school children cycling to school in broad
daylight in London isn’t knife crime.

The single biggest risk to young people in this country is from motor
vehicles, with road crashes being the largest cause of death and
disability for children in the UK.

Yet the mayor conveniently ignores the danger over which he presides.

We know that most adult Londoners themselves won't ride a bicycle on
London's streets because of fear of motor traffic (which they say the
mayor has it in his power to change).

So it’s not surprising that many parents in London wouldn’t dream of
allowing their young children to cycle on the road ... ever.

We can explain all day that the absolute risks are very low (according
to available data, Ali is the first primary-school-age child to be
killed cycling in Greater London for at least six years), but until we
do something radical to our city, most parents will say putting a
young child on a road with fast-moving traffic is unacceptable.

The result is that in the UK a tiny 1% of UK primary children cycle to
school, while London is facing a £1 billion obesity epidemic, and the
nation a long-term health crisis caused by sedentary lifestyles.

There are organisations trying their best to encourage cycling to
school, such as Sustrans’ worthy Big Pedal, but if we want to see
significant increases in cycling to school, we must start redesigning
our streets for people, especially young people.

In the Netherlands, urban planners think nothing of designing vast
residential areas entirely around the needs of the family, with the
test of suitability being whether a young child can play safely alone
in the street.

The woonerf (or 'living street') is a classic example of that – a
design that’s been around since the 1970s.

Whatever the precise design used, the principle is clear: as Steven
Schepel, architect of the Dutch approach, says: “In places with good
housing people should drive very slowly.”

Compare this with our current mayor’s approach, which might be
paraphrased: “All over London cars must drive without impediment.”

The Dutch approach of 'Sustainable Safety' ensures that when children
move from areas where streets have been properly calmed on to busier
roads, they're typically provided with high-quality, segregated bike
tracks, affording them the necessary safety from a young age.

And this approach works: as well as having the highest proportion of
bike journeys in the world for the whole population, the Netherlands
has nearly half its primary-age children cycling to school in what are
the safest streets for cyclists in the world.

Here in London, our main roads are mostly no-go areas for young kids,
while even streets near schools often get only the tiniest concessions
to reducing danger: look how close to Ali’s school you have to drive
before there’s a 20mph zone?

Cars are encouraged to drive at 30mph until they’re no more 15 metres
from the school gates.

How can this be right?

And the street where Ali died was a one-way street in a 30mph zone,
even though it’s directly outside a row of neighbourhood shops.

No-one is blaming the driver (we don't know what really happened), but
it’s easy for politicians to dismiss a tragedy like Ali’s death as an
unfortunate set of circumstances when the reality is that in many
places fatalities have been designed into London's built environment.

Until we adopt a new approach, these tragedies will continue to
happen.

The current mayor’s culture of accepting motor traffic flow as the
prime indicator of street design success must be banished forever.

LCC’s Love London, Go Dutch campaign is calling on the next mayor to
embrace Dutch-style solutions (and those from other successful cycling
nations).

Please sign our petition calling for a more liveable city, one that
has streets that are safe and inviting for all... especially
eight-year-old boys.

=====/Quote=====
Ads
  #2  
Old March 14th 12, 06:17 AM posted to uk.rec.cycling
NM
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,854
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

On Mar 13, 7:25*pm, Bertie Wooster wrote:
http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...ist-in-kingsto...



Who but a loon would let their 8 year old loose on a bike on a busy
London Road. I was encouraged to use a bike at a very early age but I
remember the admonishments from the parents, "Keep away from the main
roads", "If you have to cross a main road get off and push the bike
across" and lots of similar advice, that was nearly sixty years ago
when the level of traffic was tiny compared with now.

I lived in Amsterdam and other Dutch cities, some very modern, one
built from scratch from reclaimed sea bed, when planning from the
outset is incorporated for cycles the results are very good however
they become increasingly poor the older the environs, where I live at
the moment is 1940's development and there was no extra provision in
the initial build, all has been added later with the inevitable
compromises.

To recreate such a system in London would be prohibitively expensive
and take years and years, as cycling will never take off in London,
apart from minority use, the poor, the enthusiasts etc. because of the
simple unavoidable fact that there are too many hills such proposals
are doomed to be dead in the water.
  #3  
Old March 14th 12, 08:03 AM posted to uk.rec.cycling
Bertie Wooster[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,958
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

On Tue, 13 Mar 2012 22:17:21 -0700 (PDT), NM
wrote:

On Mar 13, 7:25*pm, Bertie Wooster wrote:
http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...ist-in-kingsto...



Who but a loon would let their 8 year old loose on a bike on a busy
London Road.


I might be inclined to have some sympathy for your view if it wasn't
for this:
=====Quote=====
the fatal crash took place outside shops on a side street, near the
busy A3.
=====/Quote=====

Somewhere along he
http://g.co/maps/2we64

I expect the taxi was bombing down the service road at excessive speed
to escape the traffic clogged A3. And why that service road does not
have a 20mph limit is something that I cannot explain.

I was encouraged to use a bike at a very early age but I
remember the admonishments from the parents, "Keep away from the main
roads", "If you have to cross a main road get off and push the bike
across" and lots of similar advice, that was nearly sixty years ago
when the level of traffic was tiny compared with now.

I lived in Amsterdam and other Dutch cities, some very modern, one
built from scratch from reclaimed sea bed, when planning from the
outset is incorporated for cycles the results are very good however
they become increasingly poor the older the environs, where I live at
the moment is 1940's development and there was no extra provision in
the initial build, all has been added later with the inevitable
compromises.

To recreate such a system in London would be prohibitively expensive
and take years and years, as cycling will never take off in London,
apart from minority use, the poor, the enthusiasts etc. because of the
simple unavoidable fact that there are too many hills such proposals
are doomed to be dead in the water.

  #4  
Old March 14th 12, 11:32 AM posted to uk.rec.cycling
Peter Parry
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,118
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

On Tue, 13 Mar 2012 19:25:46 +0000, Bertie Wooster
wrote:

http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...-street-design


The single biggest risk to young people in this country is from motor
vehicles, with road crashes being the largest cause of death and
disability for children in the UK.


Approximately twice as many children are killed or seriously injured
when passengers in cars compared with cycling. About 3 times as many
child pedestrians are killed or seriously injured as child cyclists.
Should not both these groups be a higher priority?

We can explain all day that the absolute risks are very low (according
to available data, Ali is the first primary-school-age child to be
killed cycling in Greater London for at least six years), but until we
do something radical to our city, most parents will say putting a
young child on a road with fast-moving traffic is unacceptable.


So cycling is incredibly safe therefore we should spend a vast amount
of money "doing something" to achieve nothing other than to convince a
few of the chattering classes that something has been done and
therefore the non-problem which wasn't there has become a non-problem
which isn't there?

I can see the logic behind that.

There are organisations trying their best to encourage cycling to
school, such as Sustrans’ worthy Big Pedal, but if we want to see
significant increases in cycling to school, we must start redesigning
our streets for people, especially young people.


I though you just said cycling was incredibly safe? In any case why
do we want more cyclists when walking is better exercise?

The Dutch approach of 'Sustainable Safety' ensures that when children
move from areas where streets have been properly calmed on to busier
roads, they're typically provided with high-quality, segregated bike
tracks, affording them the necessary safety from a young age.


Unfortunately the UK cycling powers that be are totally opposed to
separate bike lanes. The idea that cyclists should be put on their own
little streets and banned from roads is an anathema to the Lycristas
who worship "momentum" above all else and dread the thought of being
held up by utility cyclists.

And this approach works: as well as having the highest proportion of
bike journeys in the world for the whole population, the Netherlands
has nearly half its primary-age children cycling to school in what are
the safest streets for cyclists in the world.


Because they are for bikes alone. What everyone ignores of course is
the very simple correlation between the Netherlands having the highest
number of bike journeys and being the flattest country in the world.
Put a few small inclines in place and Dutch cycling numbers would
plummet.

No-one is blaming the driver (we don't know what really happened),


Would it not be a really good idea to find out what happened _before_
producing these rambling waily waily articles?

Until we adopt a new approach, these tragedies will continue to
happen.


Once every six years according to the author.
Wouldn't the money be better spent on improving pedestrian facilities
for children rather than wasting it on the insignificant number of
child cyclists?
  #5  
Old March 14th 12, 02:33 PM posted to uk.rec.cycling
NM
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,854
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

On Mar 14, 7:03*am, Bertie Wooster wrote:
On Tue, 13 Mar 2012 22:17:21 -0700 (PDT), NM
wrote:

On Mar 13, 7:25*pm, Bertie Wooster wrote:
http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...ist-in-kingsto....


Who but a loon would let their 8 year old loose on a bike on a busy
London Road.


I might be inclined to have some sympathy for your view if it wasn't
for this:
=====Quote=====
the fatal crash took place outside shops on a side street, near the
busy A3.
=====/Quote=====

Somewhere along hehttp://g.co/maps/2we64

I expect the taxi was bombing down the service road at excessive speed
to escape the traffic clogged A3. And why that service road does not
have a 20mph limit is something that I cannot explain.


Pure supposition on your part, the road was busy although not the A3.


  #6  
Old March 14th 12, 03:08 PM posted to uk.rec.cycling
NorthWalesYorkie[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 69
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

On Mar 14, 1:33*pm, NM wrote:
On Mar 14, 7:03*am, Bertie Wooster wrote:



On Tue, 13 Mar 2012 22:17:21 -0700 (PDT), NM
wrote:


On Mar 13, 7:25*pm, Bertie Wooster wrote:
http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...ist-in-kingsto....


Who but a loon would let their 8 year old loose on a bike on a busy
London Road.


I might be inclined to have some sympathy for your view if it wasn't
for this:
=====Quote=====
the fatal crash took place outside shops on a side street, near the
busy A3.
=====/Quote=====


Somewhere along hehttp://g.co/maps/2we64


I expect the taxi was bombing down the service road at excessive speed
to escape the traffic clogged A3. And why that service road does not
have a 20mph limit is something that I cannot explain.


Pure supposition on your part, the road was busy although not the A3.


Where does it say the road was busy?
  #7  
Old March 14th 12, 03:26 PM posted to uk.rec.cycling
Scion[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 183
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

Bertie Wooster spake thus:

On Tue, 13 Mar 2012 22:17:21 -0700 (PDT), NM wrote:

On Mar 13, 7:25Â*pm, Bertie Wooster wrote:
http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...ld-cyclist-in-

kingsto...


Who but a loon would let their 8 year old loose on a bike on a busy
London Road.


I might be inclined to have some sympathy for your view if it wasn't for
this:
=====Quote=====
the fatal crash took place outside shops on a side street, near the busy
A3.
=====/Quote=====

Somewhere along he
http://g.co/maps/2we64

I expect the taxi was bombing down the service road at excessive speed
to escape the traffic clogged A3. And why that service road does not
have a 20mph limit is something that I cannot explain.



Is that why "no-one is blaming the driver"?
  #8  
Old March 14th 12, 05:37 PM posted to uk.rec.cycling
jnugent
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 10,223
Default Rare occurrence - the stats show that cycling in London is safe,so this must be a statistical blip

On 14/03/2012 07:03, Bertie Wooster wrote:

wrote:
Bertie wrote:


http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...ist-in-kingsto...


Who but a loon would let their 8 year old loose on a bike on a busy
London Road.


I might be inclined to have some sympathy for your view if it wasn't
for this:
=====Quote=====
the fatal crash took place outside shops on a side street, near the
busy A3.
=====/Quote=====
Somewhere along he
http://g.co/maps/2we64


Would you accept: "Who but a loon would let their eight-year-old loose on any
road (especially in London)?"?

I expect the taxi was bombing down the service road at excessive speed
to escape the traffic clogged A3.


A demonstration of an over-vivid imagination.

The mere fact that you (cannily) put it that way is that you and everyone
else knows that there is *no* evidence to support what you say, but you
choose to say it anyway (this is also illustrated by your quite disgraceful
choice of thread title - have a care for the law of libel; you are not exempt
from it).

And why that service road does not
have a 20mph limit is something that I cannot explain.


A service road and a side-street are the same thing, are they?
  #9  
Old March 14th 12, 07:29 PM posted to uk.rec.cycling
Bertie Wooster[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,958
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

On Wed, 14 Mar 2012 14:26:20 +0000 (UTC), Scion
wrote:

Bertie Wooster spake thus:

On Tue, 13 Mar 2012 22:17:21 -0700 (PDT), NM wrote:

On Mar 13, 7:25*pm, Bertie Wooster wrote:
http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...ld-cyclist-in-

kingsto...


Who but a loon would let their 8 year old loose on a bike on a busy
London Road.


I might be inclined to have some sympathy for your view if it wasn't for
this:
=====Quote=====
the fatal crash took place outside shops on a side street, near the busy
A3.
=====/Quote=====

Somewhere along he
http://g.co/maps/2we64

I expect the taxi was bombing down the service road at excessive speed
to escape the traffic clogged A3. And why that service road does not
have a 20mph limit is something that I cannot explain.



Is that why "no-one is blaming the driver"?


I suppose it is possible the driver experienced mechanical failure,
had a seizure, or some other unforseeable misfortune. But that is not
my expectation.
  #10  
Old March 14th 12, 07:31 PM posted to uk.rec.cycling
Bertie Wooster[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,958
Default Eight-year-old slaughtered by taxi driver

On Wed, 14 Mar 2012 10:32:41 +0000, Peter Parry
wrote:

On Tue, 13 Mar 2012 19:25:46 +0000, Bertie Wooster
wrote:

http://lcc.org.uk/articles/death-of-...-street-design


The single biggest risk to young people in this country is from motor
vehicles, with road crashes being the largest cause of death and
disability for children in the UK.


Approximately twice as many children are killed or seriously injured
when passengers in cars compared with cycling. About 3 times as many
child pedestrians are killed or seriously injured as child cyclists.
Should not both these groups be a higher priority?

We can explain all day that the absolute risks are very low (according
to available data, Ali is the first primary-school-age child to be
killed cycling in Greater London for at least six years), but until we
do something radical to our city, most parents will say putting a
young child on a road with fast-moving traffic is unacceptable.


So cycling is incredibly safe therefore we should spend a vast amount
of money "doing something" to achieve nothing other than to convince a
few of the chattering classes that something has been done and
therefore the non-problem which wasn't there has become a non-problem
which isn't there?

I can see the logic behind that.

There are organisations trying their best to encourage cycling to
school, such as Sustrans’ worthy Big Pedal, but if we want to see
significant increases in cycling to school, we must start redesigning
our streets for people, especially young people.


I though you just said cycling was incredibly safe? In any case why
do we want more cyclists when walking is better exercise?

The Dutch approach of 'Sustainable Safety' ensures that when children
move from areas where streets have been properly calmed on to busier
roads, they're typically provided with high-quality, segregated bike
tracks, affording them the necessary safety from a young age.


Unfortunately the UK cycling powers that be are totally opposed to
separate bike lanes. The idea that cyclists should be put on their own
little streets and banned from roads is an anathema to the Lycristas
who worship "momentum" above all else and dread the thought of being
held up by utility cyclists.

And this approach works: as well as having the highest proportion of
bike journeys in the world for the whole population, the Netherlands
has nearly half its primary-age children cycling to school in what are
the safest streets for cyclists in the world.


Because they are for bikes alone. What everyone ignores of course is
the very simple correlation between the Netherlands having the highest
number of bike journeys and being the flattest country in the world.
Put a few small inclines in place and Dutch cycling numbers would
plummet.

No-one is blaming the driver (we don't know what really happened),


Would it not be a really good idea to find out what happened _before_
producing these rambling waily waily articles?

Until we adopt a new approach, these tragedies will continue to
happen.


Once every six years according to the author.
Wouldn't the money be better spent on improving pedestrian facilities
for children rather than wasting it on the insignificant number of
child cyclists?


Perhaps it wouldn't be such an insignificant number of child cyclists
on the roads if there were Dutch style cycle facilities around primary
schools.
 




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