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'Motorbikes should be banned in Colchester High Street'
2:20pm Monday 11th March 2013 in News
A TRANSPORT expert has warned allowing motorbikes to continue to use Colchester High Street when cars are banned will be a danger to pedestrians.
From March 17, all vehicles except buses, taxis, bikes and motorbikes will be barred from using High Street between 11am and 6pm.
In a report published by business group, the Federation of Small Businesses, Nevil Calder warned there is more chance of pedestrians being injured when motorcycles are on the road.
Mr Calder, of consultants C.J Safety Audit, conducted the survey, which was published on Friday.
He said: “Department for Transport statistics indicate that for every mile travelled, a motorcycle is four times more likely than a car to be involved in pedestrian death or serious injury.
“Motorcycles therefore pose a disproportionate risk to pedestrians.”
He added: “The rationale for exempting motorcycles from the restriction is unclear and does not appear to support the stated reasons for the scheme."
Anne Turrell, leader of Colchester Council, agreed with Mr Calder, but said Essex County Council policy dictates if motorcycles are banned from any street, so must buses, taxis and bicycles.
An Essex County Council spokeswoman said: "We are unsure on what basis the expert has come to this conclusion without seeing his data but we look forward to discussing with the FSB.
“Essex County Council policy is to allow motorcyclists to use bus lanes as a safety issue.
“It was introduced following the sharp increase in collisions involving powered two-wheelers and it was felt that it was safer for motorcyclists to be in bus lanes with professional drivers rather than with general traffic.”