Caroline Pidgeon

Liberal Democrat London mayoral candidate Caroline Pidgeon has pledged to continue Boris Johnson’s push for mandatory retrofitting of additional passenger-side windows in HGVs operating in the capital.

She also called for more safety training for drivers to protect "vulnerable road users", as she launched her campaign for a rush-hour HGV ban this morning (23 February).

Pidgeon told she would “absolutely” continue Johnson’s push for compulsory retrofitting if she won the election in May, and would also encourage increased use of direct vision vehicles.

“It’s really important that the whole industry improves safety in terms of training drivers, the vehicles that it’s using, retrofitting vehicles, and buying new high-visibility ones. It’s protecting drivers as well as cyclists, and we need to move forward on this,” she said.

Retrofitting was criticised by the RHA last year, who said that "demonising" vehicles was not the answer.

“I know we need carrots and sticks,” she added, “but we need to say that if you don’t have these modern features that are making vehicles safer, then you can’t go into central London.”

She added that cyclists undergoing their own training should also be encouraged, and praised the Metropolitan Police Service's Exchanging Places scheme.

"I know cycling training is offered in a lot of boroughs, and I’d encourage all cyclists who want to to take up that offer. Particularly if you’re going to commute and haven’t cycled for a few years, I think it’s sensible," she added.

Pidgeon has proposed the rush-hour ban to protect the safety of vulnerable road users, as well as reduce congestion in the city centre.

“We’re looking at changing the nature of London’s roads, because too many cyclists are being killed – and pedestrians too,” she said.

“I want to make mornings and evenings a more pleasant environment for those vulnerable road users, and this means banning lorries from our roads at these times.”

She added that increased use of consolidation centres should be considered as a way of reducing congestion in the city centre,

and that London would have to “work with the road haulage industry” on how this could be financed.