Sussex

Jo Walters death: Fatal cycle crash path 'below standard'

  • 24 February 2012
  • From the section Sussex
Jo Walters
Ms Walters' family has set up a trust in her memory

A cycle path in Brighton where a teacher died poses a safety risk because it is not wide enough, a report commissioned by her family has found.

Jo Walters, 28, was killed in 2010 after swerving to avoid another cyclist on the A270 Lewes Road.

Her family set up the Jo Walters Trust and commissioned a report into the safety of cycling in the city.

The report's author, traffic consultant Peter Mynors, found the cycle path was "below standard".

The accident happened in June 2010, as Ms Walters was cycling along the 1.9 metre-wide cycle path towards the university campuses in Falmer.

She swerved to avoid a cyclist, but lost control and went into the road in front of an oncoming truck

Mr Mynors, who has more than 45 years of experience in highway design, has put forward a plan to improve cycling along the A270.

Current guidelines suggest cycle tracks should be at least 3.2 metres wide, the report says.

'Keen cyclist'

Mr Mynors said: "By having a path that is too narrow for two cyclists to comfortably pass each other, it means you have indecision about who goes which way.

"She made a last second decision and got it wrong."

Ms Walters' sister, Lucy Johnston, said: "A lot of people are very keen on cycling in Brighton and it seems crazy that it's not a safer place to do it."

Ms Walters died when she swerved to avoid a cyclist on the A270 Lewes Road in Brighton

Ms Walters had recently qualified as a teacher and was due to start work at Uckfield Community Technology College.

At her inquest a coroner recorded a verdict of accidental death and said the width of the cycle lane was a possible contributory factor.

Brighton and Hove City Council said it was working "very closely" with the trust to make improvements along Lewes Road.

A spokeswoman said it would begin a consultation on proposals next month and start making improvements early next year.

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