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Cyclists could be forced to get licence plates and follow speed limits under new laws

Dominic Smithers

Published 
| Last updated 

Cyclists could be forced to get licence plates and follow speed limits under new laws

Featured Image Credit: Colin Underhill/Alamy/Peter Jordan_NE/Alamy

Cyclists could be forced to get licence plates and follow speed limits under new laws.

A governmental review into the country's cycling laws is set to take place, with some arguing that bikes should follow similar rules to motorists, the Daily Mail reports.

This could potentially mean being required to watch their speed or having a number plate or some kind of identifiable marker on them.

The review will also reportedly look into whether or not cyclists should require insurance to use the roads.

Under current laws, motorists are liable for any bumps they have on the road, and require full insurance in order to take their car out onto public roads.

However, cyclists are under no such obligation.

One man who backs the idea that a speed limit should be introduced is Conservative MP Grant Shapps.

Speed limits could be put on cyclists. Credit: Martin Philpott/Alamy
Speed limits could be put on cyclists. Credit: Martin Philpott/Alamy

The Transport secretary told the Daily Mail that he backs changes to the laws to make cyclists more accountable.

He said: "Somewhere where cyclists are actually not breaking the law is when they speed, and that cannot be right, so I absolutely propose extending speed limit restrictions to cyclists.

"I don’t want to stop people from getting on their bike, it’s a fantastic way to travel, and we’ve seen a big explosion of cycling during Covid and since.

"But I see no reason why cyclists should break the road laws and be able to get away with it."

Supporting the idea, road safety campaigner and solicitor Nick Freeman told the publication: "This is something that needs to happen for everyone’s safety and Grant Shapps should be congratulated for eventually listening."

This comes after Shapps called for a crackdown on cyclists who kill pedestrians.

The Tory recently came out and said that cyclists who cause serious injury and/or death should be treated the same as motorists.

Currently, riders who cause the death of a pedestrian can only be jailed for a maximum of two years.

Shapps says cyclists who kill pedestrians should face same punishment as motorists. Credit: Uwe Deffner/Alamy
Shapps says cyclists who kill pedestrians should face same punishment as motorists. Credit: Uwe Deffner/Alamy

But Shapps supports a new law on causing death by dangerous cycling in the upcoming Transport Bill, which will be presented to Parliament in the autumn.

Speaking to the Mail, he said grieving relatives of those killed in cycling accidents have 'waited too long for this straightforward measure'.

It is something campaigners have been calling for since Kim Briggs, a mother-of-two, died while crossing a road in east London in February 2016. She’d been hit by a cyclist illegally riding a fixed-wheel bike with no front brakes. He’d been travelling at 18mph.

Charlie Alliston, 18, was put behind bars for just 18 months due to outdated legislation. A motorist may have been sentenced to life.

Shapps added: "We need the cycling equivalent of death by dangerous driving to close a gap in the law and impress on cyclists the real harm they can cause when speed is combined with lack of care."

He also said that 'there can be no exceptions' in ensuring safety first applies to all road users.

Topics: UK News, Politics

Dominic Smithers
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