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Bicycle crashes and Metrolink : A Freedom of Information Act request and response.

In December 2014, Love Your Bike again raised concerns regarding the designs of Metrolink tram routes at road junctions such as Southmoor Road in Wythenshawe.  This followed on from concerns raised by Sean Sutton (the British Cycling Head Coach at the time) who described the new tram lines near to the Velodrome as ‘death traps‘.

A Love Your Bike campaigner submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) on 8th December 2014.  With a little prodding a response was finally received on 5th February 2015.  See below for text of response. TfGM’s answers are in bold and italics.

There has been a three-fold increase in both the number of incidents reported and the number of claims submitted for injuries and/or damages.

Love your Bike is aware from anecdotal discussions that many more people have suffered crashes and/or injuries when cycling alongside, near to or across Metrolink tracks – but have not reported these incidents.  We will shortly be launching an online survey to ask for people’s experiences – watch this space!

 

REQUEST FOR INFORMATION UNDER THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000

Please find below TfGM’s response to your Freedom of Information request which was received at this office on 8 December 2014.

Information requested as set out below:

With regard to Metrolink tram routes and people cycling in Greater Manchester:

1) Does Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) / Metrolink maintain records of the number of people who have reported suffering a bicycle crash whilst cycling along/across Metrolink tram tracks?

Yes

If so, please provide the following information:
a) How many cases have been reported in each year since Metrolink started operation (or from when records where first kept)?

Records have been maintained since 2008 – the number of cases reported in each year is as follows:

Year reported       No. incidents reported
2008                               1
2009                               0
2010                               0
2011                               1
2012                               1
2013                               9

2014                             29
2015                               4

b) What information is held on these reported crashes?

The information held on these reported incidents are – Date of incident; Date reported; Nearest Tram Stop; Location; Incident description; Injured Party.

c) For the last 5 years what were the locations where bicycle crashes have been reported?

Over the last 5 years there have been incidents reported at the following ‘nearest tram stop’ locations: Audenshaw; Baguley; Broadway; Cemetery Road; Clayton Hall; Droylsden; Holt Town; Ladywell; Langworthy; Martinscroft; Market Street; Moor Road; Mosely Street; Oldham Mumps; Piccadilly; Shudehill and Velopark.

2) Have any claims for injuries or damages been received by TfGM / Metrolink with regard to bicycle crashes whilst cycling along/across Metrolink tram tracks?

Yes

If any such claims have been received please provide the following information:
a) How many claims have been received in each year since Metrolink started operation (or from when records where first kept)?

Year received     No. claims received
2012                            1
2013                            3
2014                          10
2015                            2

b) How many of these claims have been upheld?
No claims have to date been upheld. The majority of these claims have only been initiated recently and are therefore subject to ongoing litigation.

c) How much has been paid towards claims for injuries or damages?

No payments have been paid towards claims for injuries or damages.

d) What were the types, and total numbers of each injury type reported?

We do not capture each injury type – all incidents are categorised under ‘Slip/Trip/Fall – Cyclist’.

If you are not satisfied with the response in this letter you may ask for an internal review. If you would like an internal review you should contact me in the first instance. My e-mail address is at the end of this letter.