Police stress cycle safety as Wiggo crashes
CALLS are being made for cyclists to be wary of the dark nights drawing in.
Gloucestershire Constabulary is warning bike owners to ensure they have their lights fitted before leaving on their journeys, with it getting dark as early as 4.30pm now.
This comes just days after Olympic gold medalist Bradley Wiggins was knocked off his bike, suffering cracked ribs and a dislocated finger.
Police in the county have reported a rise in the number of cyclists caught without lights and are reminding people of the safety concerns of pedalling in the dark.
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PCSO Steve Harris said: "We are aware that a number of people, including adults, ride bikes without lights and wherever we come across this in the first instance we try to ensure that they buy lights straight away and return to the station to show us they have been fitted.
"In the past this has been a very successful approach but if someone persists in riding without lights we have and will issue penalty notices."
Cheltenham MP Martin Horwood, a keen cyclist, said: "It is very important for cyclists to be as safe as they can be and to be aware.
"They also need to be visible in the dark. Drivers are not telepathic, if they can't see you they might hit you.
"We need to continue the support shown to young cyclists and educate them how to cycle safely.
"We also need to make sure drivers are aware equally.
"There are many ways to tackle this."
Meanwhile, Gloucester MP Richard Graham, is also a keen cyclist. He said: "I think the main issue is most people have lights fixed to the back of their bikes, but front ones are usually detachable.
"This makes them easy to steal if left on, and it is often tricky to remember to keep taking them off and put them back on again.
"Regarding the Gate streets, people need to be reminded of the rules so it is good to see police are acting on the reports."
Andrew Williams, owner of Williams Cycles shop in Cheltenham, said: "It is that time of year when cyclists can get caught out without lights.
"There are many different lights you can buy now without having to break the bank. Some of the LED ones are as good as a car headlight.
"You can get ones that are fixed, or removable ones. We always stress safety points to our customers but the main thing is to be aware."