Cyclists angry at coroner's report on Goswell Rd lorry death

Friends of Rebecca Goosen, the cyclist killed by a cement lorry last April, are angry after the coroner recorded a verdict of accidental death.

The anger comes after the coroner failed to recognise that lorry drivers should take extra care when driving in London where there are busy cycle commuter routes.

LCC's Charlie Lloyd said, "Coroners should examine ways to reduce the danger of lorries in London.  Around 3000 cyclists per day use the route where this fatality took place, and the lorry driver should have been trained to expect cyclists at every junction.

"It is possible to approach a left turn with sufficient care to check the mirrors several times and be sure that no cyclist gets caught in the small area not visible in wide-angle mirrors."

Drivers must be trained to be aware of cyclists
The coroner heard evidence that the driver checked his mirror and saw nothing. The police report says it was "entirely possible" that Goosen was obscured from view when the lorry turned left across her path.

The lorry was fitted with the legally required "safety measures", which included a Class V downward-facing mirrors on the near side.

The coroner Dr Reid said, "It is not possible to exclude the possibility that she was sitting in one of the few blindspots that remain despite these measures."

LCC says that all lorries should have the full set of mirrors required to be fitted on new lorries. 

LCC also supports Cynthia Barlow of Roadpeace, who says all lorries should be fitted with sensors linked to an alarm in the cab and audible warnings for cyclists. Barlow's daughter Alex was killed by a left-turning cement lorry in 2000, only half a mile from where Rebecca Goosen died.

Eight cyclists killed in 2009 by lorries
Goosen was the fourth out of eight cyclists to be killed by a lorry this year. LCC has recently decided to disband the specialist police unit tasked with improving lorry safety in London.

The architectural practice where Rebecca worked is encouraging all its clients to insist that construction contractors only use transport operators who ensure  lorry drivers are trained to be fully aware of vulnerable road users.