I fully support Mark Whitby's comments regarding the responsibility of engineers in respect of declining numbers of cyclists and pedestrians and the role in which engineers impact on their safety. I would applaud greater involvement from the Health & Safety Executive in protecting the most vulnerable users of highway schemes.
As a cyclist, a very large source of frustration is the attitude and actions of highway departments and engineers.
Many give the impression that anything other than a motor vehicle is seen as a nuisance at best marginalised or just ignored.
Cyclists have a legal right and expectation to use both sides of the carriageway in safety. A cycle lane placed on one side only does not take into account the needs of the cyclist as gaining access can occupy a significant proportion of the total journey time and an increase the risk of accident.
When such accidents occur, I feel the HSE should investigate whether a case should be brought against the highway engineers involved in the design. It may well be the engineer was more responsible than the vehicle driver. Failure to take into account the normal legal consideration, usage and reasonable expectation of cyclists and pedestrians should result in prosecution.
Nick Chapman, nick. chapman@globalspirit.