The Government shares Ms Clegg’s concern about the safety of cyclists. But we believe a better way to help all road users to share road space safely is to raise skill levels. The Driver Certificate of Professional Competence, which we introduced in September for professional lorry drivers, will help them maintain and develop their driving skills. Lorry drivers now have to take extra tests on top of a LGV licence to get a Driver CPC. They then have to take 35 hours of approved periodic training every five years to retain the CPC and continue to drive professionally. There is no evidence to suggest that a LGV safety certificate would make lorry drivers more aware of cyclists. Such a scheme would be expensive to introduce and operate, and would be difficult to enforce.
There is a number of questions in the LGV driving theory test (the test a person takes to acquire a LGV licence, whether they need a CPC or not) which tackle specifically the issue of large vehicles sharing the road with cyclists, particularly at junctions. The Driving Standards Agency’s publication Driving Goods Vehicles, one of the main test source materials, also refers to cyclists in a number of sections.
Fair dinkum, I do agree with that that we need help all road users to share road space safely and raise their skill levels. And I’m glad to hear that the LGV drivers are having extra tests on this issue.
But what about all the SillyCyclist I see every day on the roads, they need to be trained too. Every day I see one sneaking up on the inside of a bus or a lorry, when it is clearly not safe to do so.
Like the other day when I saw a cyclist trying to over take (or should be undertake) a bus on the left hand side on a left turning bend of the road. Of course he came to halt and have to bail out and had to do a bit of hopping and skipping up unto the pavement to avoid being dragged under the bus. When I then told the SillyCyclist that is why I never go on the inside of a bus/lorry he looked at me as I was the mad one.