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News

Minister argues for less emphasis on protective equipment

UK Transport Minister Norman Baker, who has special responsibility for cycling, told the 1st Annual CILT Transport, Health and Well Being Conference on 24 April 2012 that the number of deaths from cycle accidents is very small compared to the number of deaths from obesity and heart disease and therefore it was wrong to say that cycling is unsafe. The truth is that it is unsafe not to cycle. He also said that an overemphasis on protective clothing conveys the false impression that cycling is unsafe.

Later the same day Mr Baker made similar remarks to the Transport Select Committee of the House of Commons, as did Road Safety Minister Mike Penning.

The Minister's remarks have been praised in many quarters for being sensible and courageous. Dr Steve Watkins of the Transport and Health Study Group (TSHG - an organisation of medical professionals with a special interest in transport and healthy lifestyles) said: "Mr Baker's statements are entirely consistent with THSG policy and are very welcome. I have written to the Minister congratulating him and offering our support".

Thu 26 Apr 2012

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