Regulator unmoved by study showing trucks can be made safer for cyclists

Source: Globe & Mail, November 14, 2011

It’s a debate that’s gone on for years: Should truck drivers be forced to install side guards to help prevent pedestrians and cyclists from being crushed under their rear wheels? To families and friends of the victims, it’s a life-saving measure, a position reinforced after the tragic death of a cyclist in Toronto last week. But the trucking industry and the federal transportation regulator argue the evidence of the side-guard’s effectiveness isn’t clear. The debate moves to Ottawa on Monday when opposition MP Olivia Chow will press the government to make the protection mandatory on trucks across the country. A report from 2010, commissioned by Transport Canada and made available to The Globe and Mail, shows that since the introduction of guards on the side of most trucks in Europe in the late 1980s, the number of cyclists and pedestrians killed or seriously wounded in crashes with large vehicles has dropped. More

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