Road safety is paramount at Crossrail, especially for vulnerable road users such as cyclists who are negotiating the busy roads of London.
In conjunction with the Metropolitan Police Cycle Task Force and the City of London Police, we aim to raise awareness for vulnerable road users about the dangers of sharing London roads with construction traffic.
Crossrail and its contractors run a series of Exchanging Places events in prominent locations near our construction sites and along our lorry routes.
Exchanging Places is an award-winning programme which addresses the most common cause of serious injury and death to cyclists - collisions involving a heavy goods vehicle (HGV). It gives cyclists the opportunity to sit in the driver’s seat of an HGV to see for themselves how difficult it can be to see a cyclist riding close to the lorry. Experienced traffic police officers explain how this type of collision often happens and the various ways to avoid them.
More than 12,000 cyclists have taken part in the programme, run by the TfL funded MPS Cycle Task Force. Exchanging Places won a Prince Michael International Road Safety Award in 2013 for its success in promoting safer cycling.
So far, Crossrail has successfully held over 20 pop-up events since the first one in July 2012.
Upcoming Exchanging Places events
On 20th May we will be jointly holding an Exchanging Places event with the Metropolitan Police from 7:30am to 10:30am at the bottom of St John Street, EC1M 4AY.
Visitors have the opportunity to sit in the driver’s seat of a heavy goods vehicle (HGV) and discuss the dangers of blind spots and safer cycling with experienced traffic police officers. Also on offer is a free bike M.O.T. from qualified mechanics and free bike marking on Bike Register (a national cycle database for if your bike is lost or stolen). Both the Crossrail Community Relations team and the Liverpool Street worksite team will be on hand to explain our commitment to road safety, talk about Crossrail as a whole and works at our Liverpool Street Station site. All are welcome, no need to book.
Remember you have a responsibility to make sure you are seen and that you take into account changing road and traffic conditions when you cycle.
Always show caution when approaching junctions and never assume other road users will indicate before they turn.
Likewise, you must indicate when you intend to turn so other road users can take into account your manoeuvres.
It is important that all road users share the roads as safely as possible and this means taking responsibility for your actions at all times.
10 TOP TIPS FOR CYCLE SAFETY
- Always respect heavy goods vehicles, never undertake lorries, stay back if necessary and take special care when turning left at junctions.
- Never jump red lights.
- Obey the rules of the road. A bicycle is a vehicle and The Highway Code applies. The Department for Transport administer complimentary cycle proficiency lessons through your local Borough. Visit http://bikeability.dft.gov.uk/ for more information.
- Never listen to music, text or use a mobile phone whilst cycling; you need your senses to concentrate.
- Look out for other cyclists; their behaviour can also be a hazard to you.
- If you are concerned about crossing busy intersections, get off your bike and walk.
- Stick to cycle lanes where possible but remember you still need to cycle responsibly and look out for hazards.
- At junctions use the Advanced Stop Line but take extra care when moving up the inside of a queue of stationary traffic in case the lights change and traffic moves off.
- Make sure you are visible. Wear hi-vis clothing and a helmet. Use lights at night.
- Make sure your bike is roadworthy and secure at all times; check brakes, tyres, lights, chain.
Watch more videos and read more driver and cyclist safety tips on Transport for London's website.