By Chelsea Mendez.
A 30-year-old, male cyclist from Poole has died following a collision with a van at around 10.39pm on Tuesday 3 October 2017.
The incident took place on the A338 Spur Road southbound around one mile from the Ashley Heath roundabout.
The victims family have been informed.
The police have arrested a man and woman around lunchtime today, Wednesday 4th October in relation to the crime after the van was found in the Southampton area this morning.
The tragic death has called attention the lack of safety cyclists face on Bournemouth roads. Last year Bournemouth was named the fourth most dangerous place to be a cyclist outside of London. It was named the second most dangerous place in 2014.
More than 100 bike users are killed and 3,000 are seriously injured on British roads every year according to official statistics.
Bournemouth Borough Council’s latest Road Safety Report stats that pedal cyclists make up only 1.3% of all traffic but they are involved in 27% of all killed or seriously injured incident (KSI).
They are also 80 times more likely to be involved in a collision resulting in a KSI casualty than car users.
Dorset Cyclists Network’s Bournemouth Coordinator John Hayter stated that Bournemouth Council had done a “good job in town” making it safer for pedestrians and cyclists but calls for more work to be done.
The A338 road where the fatal incident took place had just been remodelled as part of a £22m scheme. The provided improvements include:
- A new lower noise surface layer
- 1m hard strip for emergency use and breakdowns
- Improved drainage to reduce flooding and ponding
- New concrete central reserve safety barrier to reduce maintenance and likelihood of crossover accidents
- New road signs, cats’ eyes and road markings
However, there were no cycle lanes put in, despite the council swearing commitment to improving the cycling experience in Bournemouth.
John Hayter said: “We were very disappointed to hear about the fatal crash last night because that road was completely redone to the tune of many, many millions of pounds and the council rejected the idea of a shared verge or hard shared footpath with pedestrians. That incident could have been avoided had they put more money into it as the cyclist would could have been tucked away.”
Listen to what John Hayter proposes as Bournemouth Councils next step to improve road safety for cyclists in Bournemouth. <iframe width=”100%” height=”300″ scrolling=”no” frameborder=”no” src=”https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/345325641&color=%23ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true”></iframe>
When speaking to councillor Mark Anderson who is on the transport committee, he said: ““I am also disappointed in Dorset Council because I too had asked them to introduce a hard shoulder and they said they would look at it and introduce one and they did not. I expect if they had, he would have been in it (the cyclist) and avoided it.
When you rear-line the road you should put a hard shoulder, my aim was the aim to get the cars off the road if they broke down but it would have worked for cyclists too.”
Dorset Council were offered the chance to reply to the criticisms but did not respond.
Mark Anderson also stated that there are schemes in place currently to promote road safety for cyclists as well as motorists.
‘Drive Safe, Spare Lives’ is one which is currently running in conjunction with Dorset and Wiltshire authority and it has been rolled out to various schools around the area.
Dorset police have launched their own scheme, Operation Close Pass, to catch drivers who do not leave enough room for cyclists when passing them.
Police officers will go undercover as cyclists equipped with body cameras to record dangerous drivers. Drivers who do not safely overtake cyclists will be pulled over and then be escorted to the roadside by the officer and given a 10-minute road safety education talk. If drivers refuse, they will get a £100 fine and 3 points on their license.
As the winter months are approaching and commuters will mostly be travelling in the dark during mornings and evenings, cyclists are encouraged to wear visible clothing and motorists are reminded to slow down at roundabouts and junctions and check twice for bikes.
Bournemouth Council offers a free cycle training course for anyone over the age of 18 who lives, works or studies in the Bournemouth area.
If anyone who was travelling on the A338 between 9:30 pm and 10:40 pm last night who may have seen a cyclist are urged to contact the police.
They also request anyone who may have been around the area at the relevant time and may have dashcam footage in their vehicles to contact them as well.