Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Road Rage: The Battle for Britain's Roads

There was an excellent programme on BBC One last night (Monday 7th January, 9pm). To quote the blurb, “Britain is in the grip of an escalating road rage crisis. Filming on some of the UK's most traffic-choked streets, this special investigation exposes just how bad the situation has become; as violence and abuse in the war between motorists, cyclists, wardens and police escalates without any solution in sight. For decades, the UK's ever-growing number of motorists have been kings of the road; paying tax and fuel duty, they believe the streets belong to them. But now the balance of power is shifting. Increasing numbers of cyclists and pedestrians are demanding, and exercising, equal rights to the road and the anger on each side is mounting. Strong language.”

It was produced by Steadfast Productions Ltd and narrated by Jamie Theakston. It would be great if they could make it available for repeat viewing. It might be available on the BBC iPlayer.

Overall it was fairly balanced and there was some great footage showing the problems cyclists face in London. Having said that it is somewhat spoilt by a section on an excessive City of London police crackdown on cyclists while they continue to ignore drivers breaking the rules. The Evening Standard wrote about this last night. 'Mike Bowron, City of London police commissioner, says there is "a significant minority, known as Lycra louts, who are literally trying to dominate the road and they are a sort of clan". Police dismiss a recent report claiming cyclists can be safer if they jump red lights.'


Sylvia said...

This is a great blog.

I taped the prog but haven't watched it yet.

My feeling as a London cyclist is that law and order has completely broken down in London. Every day I see many drivers talking on handheld mobile phones, jumping red lights and speeding. The Metropolitan Police are a rubbish police force and I resent them turning a blind eye to killer motorists while pouncing on cyclists.

John said...

Hi Sylvia

If you still have a tape or dvd, I would love a copy for teaching GCSE English.

Many thanks.