CityCyclingEdinburgh Forum » Infrastructure

Whitehouse Road cyclist down

(81 posts)
  • Started 4 months ago by stiltskin
  • Latest reply from neddie

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  1. Morningsider
    Member

    Transport for London requires all HGVs being used in the city to meet a Direct Vision Standard, rules which are being tightened up significantly from this October. In effect, blind spots will be eliminated though vehicle design or (in older vehicles) the use of technology.

    This requirement is imposed using a special type of road order made under London-only provisions of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984. I'm not entirely sure that this could be directly replicated in Edinburgh, but I think there is a good chance it could be. I think the Council should look into it, certainly a better option than hoping HGV drivers choose to behave better.

    Details: https://tfl.gov.uk/info-for/deliveries-in-london/delivering-safely/direct-vision-in-heavy-goods-vehicles

    Posted 4 months ago #
  2. Arellcat
    Moderator

    Extra questions are -

    • whether the one on Whitehouse Rd was doing a job for CEC?
    • are all such vehicles working for CEC owned and staffed by CEC?
    • how many private collection routes/vehicles are there?

    No CEC FOI requests that I can find have ever mentioned business with NWH.

    This CEC FOI response notes:

    Are the refuse collectors (bin men/women) directly employed by The City of Edinburgh Council or are they subcontractors?

    The collection drivers and operatives are employed directly by the Council.

    Earlier FOI responses note that some agency workers were recruited during the worst of the pandemic (for refuse collection anyway) because of vacancies and/or absences. But this would be drivers of refuse vehicles, whereas this was a tipper truck so I've no idea what job it was doing, except to say that could have related to recycling or trade waste.

    Edit: Google Streetview suggests the Edinburgh base is a materials recovery facility and looks like trade waste.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  3. chdot
    Admin

    Thanks

    So motions about what CEC’s bin lorries should do might be hollow…

    Posted 4 months ago #
  4. Murun Buchstansangur
    Member

    Couple of points:

    1) the vehicle involved was a NWH bin/waste lorry, as images from the scene confirm. It was not ‘low cab’. NWH operate both waste and tipper trucks (badly IMV, from my experiences with them)

    2) the vehicle appears to have been travelling southwards (so away from Cramond Primary). The vehicle came to a rest just before the pedestrian crossing at the shops on Whitehouse Road. Images again show the vehicle halting very close to the nearside kerb

    I think there’s a lot we (and elected representatives) need to know before settling on a proposed course of action. Based on his previous actions and pronouncements, I’d have approximately zero confidence Cllr Lang and his colleagues have appraised themselves of that. Pure cynical politics (as is their wont).

    Posted 4 months ago #
  5. acsimpson
    Member

    There seems to be a certain amount of speculation in this thread which is natural but not always helpful. I have avoided posting what I have heard locally but I think that it is now perhaps worth sharing as I have heard it from a few sources although I recognise that there may be a common source.

    Thomas was cycling northbound on the pavement past the golf club. The driver of the NWH vehicle was exiting the golf club car park, presumably after doing a commercial waste pickup. The driver did not see Thomas and tragically killed him.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  6. acsimpson
    Member

    As I'm now hypothesising about the driver I have created a new post. I'm going to assume the driver is male as it makes pronouns easier. We can't be certain why the driver didn't stop however a few things seem likely.

    The driver could see the road over the wall as he approached the exit and the road was clear. Critically he could not see the pavement. He chose to proceed without first ensuring that the pavement was clear.

    If this is correct then the largest part of the blame must lie with the driver. However the high cab would certainly have enabled such poor driving as a lower cab would have ensured he would see the road only once he was proceeding out the exit.

    Having thought this through I now find myself wondering if a segregated lane would actually have made any difference here. The driver was not following the highway code so there is no reason to think that a segregated lane would have slowed him anymore than the pavement did. It's possible that having it further from the wall would help but not guaranteed.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  7. Dave
    Member

    We know from studies that segregated lanes reduce injuries by 40% IIRC, but indeed not 100%

    Plenty (hundreds) of pedestrians are killed and maimed each year by drivers just driving up onto the pavement, so probably always going to be a tragic baseline

    Posted 4 months ago #
  8. neddie
    Member

    The driver did not see...

    Let's avoid the victim-blaming language.

    The driver did not look into all the possible spaces where people* could be or people could come from...

    *people of all sizes, clothing variety and conceivable transport modes

    Posted 4 months ago #
  9. boothym
    Member

    Having thought this through I now find myself wondering if a segregated lane would actually have made any difference here.
    If there were (uni-directional) segregated lanes on either side of the road, and with the crossing south of the car park exit, then there's a good chance someone cycling north would have already crossed over to the opposite side of the road and not have been on the pavement by that point.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  10. neddie
    Member

    A segregated cycle lane would also improve the sight-lines to people cycling, as they would be further away from the stone wall that creates blind spots to the pavement at that location.

    Doesn't solve the problem of drivers not looking for pedestrians crossing the Burgess exit though.

    A better solution, in addition to segregated lanes, is to close off one of the Burgess entrances/exits entirely, and have all traffic enter and exit via a single point with a steep-sided raised table. The added benefit of 2-way traffic would bring driver uncertainty and hence slower speeds.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  11. Murun Buchstansangur
    Member

    Thanks @acsimpson.

    Speaking in generalities now - sadly, a great many drivers don’t look left properly before turning left (rewriting eg Highway Code is bringing a peashooter to a gunfight) and that has implications for all junction design but particularly where bidirectional cycle lanes are concerned, such junctions need to be made super-hostile to vehicles to reduce speed/maximise observation time. And that’s a bar I don’t think CCWEL reaches.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  12. neddie
    Member

    Yep, there is a blind exit from Donaldsons on CCWEL, opposite Stanhope St. Particularly bad if you're heading East.

    https://maps.app.goo.gl/9J48zwjY5NKXNJVk6

    Posted 4 months ago #
  13. acsimpson
    Member

    @neddie, I used the phrase "did not see" as it covers various scenarios. However in all cases it was the drivers responsibility to see Thomas. I'm not sure how my post can be taken to be victim blaming but I apologise if it is not clear enough.

    Posted 4 months ago #
  14. Stickman
    Member

    Two weeks ago, the leader of the Liberal Democrats tabled a motion acknowledging the tragic death of schoolboy Thomas Wong, asking for a report into improving road safety. The Greens added to this motion suggesting specific cycle safety measures be included, for example restricting heavy goods vehicles at school drop off and collection times.

    Citing a desire not to ‘politicise’ a tragedy, or to pre-empt any findings of the police investigation, the leader of the Liberal Democrats exerted significant pressure on the Greens to withdraw the amendment, which they duly did. The Green transport reps – two women, and the two youngest people ever elected to Edinburgh Council – were repeatedly told that it was inappropriate to call for this, with the implication being that they could cause additional upset and that they should just keep quiet.

    Imagine our surprise, therefore, when the following week the press revealed a campaign from that same Liberal Democrat leader for heavy good vehicles to be banned at the school gates. Apparently, he had been ‘spurred into action’ by the recent tragedy. It’s only young women, it seems, who are in danger of acting inappropriately by trying to make change.Two years in, and you’d think I wouldn’t be surprised at cynical moves from other parties, but to be honest I hope I never lose that naivety. To meet such things with a shrug rather than disbelief would be to accept that this is just how things are and we can only expect the worst of others. That’s not how I think we can achieve a better politics.

    https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/opinion/columnists/for-political-change-to-happen-politics-itself-must-change-alys-mumford-4564256

    Posted 3 months ago #
  15. Dave
    Member

    If someone kills my kids on the road, I hope nobody will hold back from calling for safety improvements or skewering the councillors that are blocking them.

    Apropos of nothing, I hope the next C&B letters page gives Cllr Arthur indigestion.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  16. acsimpson
    Member

    Absolutely. The fact that cllr Laing is one of the chief architects of active travel stagnation in the city makes this even more distasteful.

    Posted 3 months ago #
  17. chdot
    Admin

    A man, 28, man has been arrested in connection with a fatal crash on Whitehouse Rd involving a bin lorry and a school boy.

    It happened around 8.20am on Fri 1 March near the junction with Braehead Rd. Thomas Wong, 11, was pronounced dead at the scene.

    Enquiries are continuing.

    https://x.com/psosedinburgh/status/1795816889500795033

    Posted 1 month ago #
  18. acsimpson
    Member

    Would it be so very hard for Police Scotland to mention that there was a driver involved perhaps even telling us if the 28 year old man was the driver?

    Posted 1 month ago #
  19. edinburgh87
    Member

    @acs - also “[more vulnerable party]] was in collision with” is another journalistic phrase that winds me up. NWH being involved, an arrest doesn’t surprise me at all

    Posted 1 month ago #
  20. resurf
    Member

  21. neddie
    Member

    Despicable language in that article

    an Edinburgh child died on 1 March as he cycled to school

    Makes it sound like he had a heart attack or something while cycling.

    He was killed, he didn’t die.

    No mention of the victim’s name or that a driver or even a motorised vehicle was involved. The things people do to cover-up the horrors that motorists cause

    Posted 1 month ago #

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