Cycling Fatalities: Ian Winterburn

Part of Christmas Adjournment – in the House of Commons at 5:00 pm on 21 December 2017.

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Photo of Fabian Hamilton Fabian Hamilton Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs), Shadow Minister (Defence) 5:00, 21 December 2017

This debate is the last parliamentary business before the recess and, indeed, the last business of the year, but it nevertheless deals with an issue that is of great seriousness and grave concern to my constituents and to many others, given the number of people who have been injured or killed when cycling on our roads.

On 12 December last year, 58-year-old Ian Winterburn was cycling to work at 7.30 am, as he did every day. Ian was a keen and regular cyclist. As usual, he was wearing his cyclist’s high-visibility jacket, and all his bike lights were on. He always wore a cycling helmet. As he was passing the junction of Whitkirk Lane on the A6120 ring road in Halton, Leeds, a silver Skoda Fabia was signalling to turn right, but instead of waiting for Ian to cycle past, the driver went straight into him, knocking him off his bike and fatally injuring him. She claimed that she had not seen him. After 10 days in a coma, Ian died from his injuries on 22 December.

Cyclist Charlie Alliston was famously sentenced to 18 months in prison recently for fatally injuring pedestrian Mrs Briggs in one of two such fatal accidents last year, yet any more cyclists have been killed or badly injured by cars during the same period. Alliston’s case justifiably received plenty of media coverage, but shocking deaths such as that of Ian Winterburn scarcely receive any, and public anger towards cyclists is now at an all-time high.

The 51-year-old driver of the Skoda that killed Ian was sentenced on 20 October by Leeds magistrates court for causing death by careless driving.