Boris Johnson retracts claim that two-thirds of cyclists killed and injured broke the law

After months of pressure from campaigners, Mayor Boris Johnson has retracted his claim that two-thirds of cyclists killed or seriously injured in London had suffered as a result of breaking the law.

LCC’s Charlie Lloyd said, "The mayor is to be congratulated for having the courage to admit he made a mistake: this retraction should help correct the damaging misconception, including among many politicians and journalists, that people who are hurt while riding a bicycle are usually responsible for their own injuries."

Johnson’s claim, made during Mayor’s Question Time on 23 May 2012, was retracted in a written answer to Green Assembly Member Jenny Jones (Q2450/2012), in which the Mayor said:

"I asked Transport for London to look into a statistic that I was told about during my election campaign. Its own statistics and research suggest this is not the case in London and I am pleased to be able to set the record straight on this."

We asked the Mayor to retract the figure, first in May 2012, and also made it a topic of debate during the #askboris Twitter Q&A session in July 2012:

Boris please correct your stats and admit that most cyclist injuries are caused by bad driving #askboris @MayorofLondon

According to Transport for London, the correct figure is a mere three or four out of every hundred, meaning over 95% of cycling casualties are not hurt as a result of breaking the law (for example, ignoring a red light or riding illegally down a one-way street.)

This view is supported by independent researchers who've shown only a tiny number of cyclists are hurt as a result of breaking the law and that in collisions between motor vehicles and bicycles, the reasons for the crash are two or three times as likely to be attributed to the driver as to the cyclist.

On 27 April 2012, then mayoral candidate Boris Johnson signed up to the London Cycling Campaign’s three Love London, Go Dutch commitments, to help make the capital safe and inviting for cyclists.

We’ve updated our verdict on the First 100 Days of his latest mayoralty to reflect the mayor's correction.