Published: 24 May 2013
Report: British Cycling
Moves to introduce a cyclist awareness element to driving lessons by two of the UK’s leading driving schools will help us to foster a culture of mutual respect between all road users British Cycling’s President said today.
Greater cycling awareness was one of the key recommendations of the Get Britain Cycling report. To make a different to cycling in the UK, please sign The Times’ petition to get behind the Get Britain Cycling recommendations: http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/49196
AA Driving School and BSM have publicly committed to making sure all of their instructors cover vital skills about driving around cyclists. All driving instructors from both schools will take a module to teach drivers how to drive safely around cyclists. They will also be given a worksheet about safe driving around cyclists for their pupils to use.
Commenting on the move, British Cycling’s President, Brian Cookson OBE, said:
“I am delighted that two of the UK’s biggest driving schools have committed to include cyclist awareness elements to driver training. Currently, there is no specific cyclist awareness module in the driving test meaning that many new drivers pass without having their ability to pass cyclists safely assessed. British Cycling wants to foster a culture of mutual respect between all road users and we applaud AA Driving School and BSM for recognising the importance of this.
“This move will ensure that thousands more new motorists will be equipped with the skills needed to drive safely around cyclists - and more importantly, could bring us a step closer to getting a cyclist awareness module introduced as a mandatory part of the driving test.”
The AA’s President, Edmund King – who cycles regularly on the country’s roads – has long spoken of the need to break down barriers between all road users. Commenting on the new element of driving training, King said:
“I am personally committed to breaking down the ‘Two Tribes’ attitude displayed between some drivers and cyclists. Often we are the same people. I am delighted to announce that two of the biggest driving schools, AA and BSM, will be working to bring harmony on the roads between drivers and cyclists.
“This new module means we now have a standardised approach to teaching learners how to drive safely around cyclists from two of the country’s leading driving schools. I am convinced that this initiative will change attitudes and save lives.”
The AA and BSM training content has been developed with input from key members of the cycling community. The module for instructors covers some ‘do’s and don’ts’ for driving around cyclists. The pupil worksheet encourages learners to think about the care, courtesy and consideration they should afford cyclists. More information is available on the AA’s website here.
Red Driving School is looking for cyclists' views on how safe they feel on the road and around motor traffic, including what changes to training and testing would most benefit cyclists. To share your views, fill in the survey here.