Motorcycle Industry Association call for permanence in London bus lane scheme

Published: 01 June 2010

The Motorcycle Industry Association has called for motorcyclists to be allowed permanent access to London’s bus lanes.

The experimental scheme in place at the moment, which currently allows bikers to travel in bus lanes in the capital, is due to end on 5 July, and the MCI are calling on the relative authorities to make the scheme permanent.

Steve Kenward, MCI’s Acting CEO said, “Given that the July deadline is now quite close, we are surprised that the Mayor has been silent about the future of the initiative.

“We feel that it is important to point out that allowing motorcycles to use bus lanes is a positive step towards improving transport accessibility for London citizens and in demonstrating the positive effect that motorcycling has in reducing traffic congestion and Co2 levels.”

The trial, which has been in operation since January, 2009, has allowed bikers to use red route bus lanes currently used by cyclists and taxi drivers during operational hours. It does not include bus lanes on borough roads.

An interim report in November 2009 showed no evidence for the scheme to be scrapped. Key evaluation criteria include casualty and collision data gathered from the Metropolitan Police records.

The report shows a total increase in all bus lane collisions of five, from 369 between 5 January and 30 April 2008 to 374 for the same period in 2009.

Kenward added, “Safety must not be used once again as an excuse to deny motorcycling equal treatment with cycling.

"Such a policy would be unbalanced and would actually sustain poor motorcycle safety records and deny Londoners transport choice.

“It is now down to the Mayor and Transport for London to demonstrate that they are willing to apply a fair hand in how they regard the future of the scheme and focus on motorcycle safety education, awareness and positive ‘bill board’ publicity in the same way that they do for cycling; anything else would be both grossly unfair and demonstrate unjustifiable bias against motorcycling.”