The UK government is proposing a crackdown on dangerous cyclists, including updating what it regards as antiquated and insufficient current legislation covering prosecutions for injuries and deaths caused by dangerous cycling.
Cyclists can currently be prosecuted for bodily harm caused by ‘wanton and furious driving’ under the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act (a crime originally committed by horse-drawn carriage drivers), with a maximum penalty of two years’ imprisonment. This is inconsistent with the law applied to motorists who may be jailed for life, and both government and campaigners believe this is one area in which the current system is both outdated and unfair to victims of dangerous cyclists.
The government proposals aim to extend speed restrictions that apply to motorists to cyclists, and enforce them more effectively, particularly in 20mph zones, with fines and penalty points handed out to cyclists exceeding the speed limit and riding dangerously, for example, cycling through red lights. Some form of registration system could be necessary to identify and prosecute dangerous cyclists, although plans for registration plates are viewed by many as impractical.
Cyclists could also be legally required to hold insurance to provide cover in the event of accidents, injuries and deaths caused by dangerous cycling. Personal injury claims against dangerous cyclists would be on the same level as claims against dangerous motorists, giving injured pedestrians and other road users better legal rights and access to compensation.
While insurance is not currently mandatory for cyclists, many are fully insured and have third party cover for public liability accidents, including collisions with pedestrians and damage to property. Our solicitors have many years of combined experience in successfully representing pedestrians injured by dangerous and reckless cyclists. Contact our team of specialist lawyers today for free and confidential advice: