Crossrail to provide cycle-awareness training for 3000 lorry drivers

photo The largest construction project in Europe will insist every lorry driver has cycle-awareness training.

Street closures, demolitions and diversions have already hit the West End: it’s the start of seven years of works to build the eight stations and 15 miles of tunnels that comprise Crossrail, the largest construction project in Europe.

Each underground station requires a massive hole, from which most of the waste material is be removed by rail and transferred to Thames barges.

Nevertheless, many thousands of tonnes of dirt will be taken out of central London by trucks, and most of the new building materials will be brought in by road.

The lorries will follow designated routes, but unavoidably for a project of this magnitude, many of these form part of popular cycle routes. For example, lorries exiting the Bond St station works will drive along Brook St and Upper Brook St, one of the main cycle thoroughfares through Mayfair.

Lobbying brought matters to Crossrail attention
LCC and CTC recognised early on the potential danger these lorries posed to cyclists and pedestrians. Combined lobbying led to Crossrail agreeing to provide cycle-awareness training for all drivers on the project.

We’re working with Crossrail to improve the training, and have already attended pilot sessions. Charlie Lloyd, cycling development officer said, “This is the first time that every single driver serving a construction project will have cyclist-awareness training.

"The skills they learn will be carried over to future projects. However, drivers aren’t being given cycle training, a measure we see as essential.”

Consolidation depot will minimise movements
Crossrail is also planning to minimise lorry movements during the fitting-out phase by setting up a consolidation depot.

Material will be delivered there, and then shipped into central London by fewer lorries, driven by a team of trained Crossrail drivers.

However, LCC is concerned that during the constrution phase hundreds of lorries carrying wet concrete will be heading for the inner-city sites, with their perishable payloads creating potentially dangerous time pressures for the drivers.