Free to Move
Ken Livingstone, who during his reign added 1200 sets of traffic lights to London streets, now “pledges to install traffic lights to give cyclists a 5 second head start,” reports The Times. Boris too “is considering early green lights,” chirps the Evening Standard. In an editorial, it says, “this is a simple and sensible idea. We need more imaginative thinking to make our city safer for cyclists.” This pitiful coverage lays bare the total ignorance among editors and politicians alike of the overwhelming case for reform of the current traffic control system. By failing to commission articles on the subject (which I pitch and re-pitch continually), are editors censoring criticism, and colluding in the unspeakable peacetime casualty toll over which the system presides? (From 2001 to 2011, there have been 156 cyclists killed and 4,000 badly injured.) Reform along the lines advocated here and at Equality Streets would make roads safe not just for cyclists, but for everyone – without the need for expensive technology or vexatious state intervention.
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