Yesterday was a fantastic day for cycling in Britain. In the afternoon, after an astonishing performance in the time trial, Bradley Wiggins won the Gold medal while his Team GB mate Chris Froome got Bronze.
(Wiggos views on road safety are barmy, however.
Update: On Twitter, the Lord of the Cyclists later said his views on helmet laws were misreported: “Just to confirm I haven’t called for helmets to be made the law as reports suggest. I suggested it may be the way to go to give cyclists more protection legally I involved In an accident.”)
However, yesterday was also a black day for cycling in Britain and for the Olympic games. Only a few hours after Brads triumph, an “Olympic bus” carrying journalists killed a male cyclist on the junction of Ruckholt Road and East Cross Road.
The crash happened at 7.45pm very close to the Olympic Park in East London. The victim is the 10th cyclist who died in a traffic accident in London in 2012 (full details about all cycling fatalities in London since 2006 are available here).
Update: According to the London Fixed Gear and Singlespeed Forum, the killed cyclist was Dan Harris (@gecko84 on Twitter). On his blog, Dan describes himself as “social media strategist, community manager and web editor” and a physicist by training. Rest in Peace, Dan.
This death makes me very sad and very angry at the same time. The fatality is related to the Olympics in several different ways. The most straightforward connection is that he was killed by an official games vehicle. (Here’s an appalling report by an eye-witness of the crash.)
The bigger story is that the games are making cycling much more dangerous in London. Important and safe cycle lanes around the Olympic Park have been closed due to security (= terrorism) concerns for months. Yesterday’s fatality apparently happened 120 meters beyond entrance to a closed segregated cycle-path, as cyclist Donnachadh McCarthy wrote on Facebook. (more…)