Staff at the QEHB and top bike retailer Halfords want to increase safety awareness among cyclists after seeing a rise in the number of patients seriously injured in cycling accidents.
The Hospital’s Cycle Safer campaign, launches with a free bike doctor day at the hospital this Friday (September 14th) and aims to raise public awareness and reduce accidents. They will urge both motorists and cyclists, to take more care on the roads, as well as encouraging cyclists to wear protective gear such as cycle helmets and high-visibility clothing.
QEHB, a major trauma centre and one of the busiest A&E departments in the country, has seen the aftermath of some of the most serious cycling accidents.
Data collected at QEHB since October 2011 shows that falls from bikes has increased to an average of 30 per month in 2012, peaking in May this year with fifty admissions to hospital, compared with an average of 20 in 2011.
The Cycle Clinic will enable hospital employees, patients and their families to bring along their bikes to have them checked over by expert bike specialists from Halfords for free. Minor repairs and punctures will be done on the spot and a limited number of discount vouchers will be offered for full bike, brake and gear services, which can deal with more major repairs.
Plenty of tips and advice on safe cycling will be available at the session located in the hospital atrium from 10am to 2pm, as well as a number of money-off vouchers for protective cycle gear such as helmets, lights and reflective jackets.
This year has seen a huge increase in the number of cyclists on the roads with British success in the Tour de France and the Olympic Velodrome adding to the buzz around the sport, as well as the popular cycle2work scheme which has seen a big rise in applications.
Margaret Garbett, the Trust’s Matron for A&E, is keen for people to enjoy cycling without injury: “We really feel passionately about this campaign as in the last two months we have seen some very serious injuries including three fatalities. What has struck us most is that the majority of those patients were not wearing protective equipment such as helmets or brightly-coloured clothing.”
“Cycling is a great sport and we actively encourage our staff and the public to keep fit by cycling, but first and foremost, we want people to be safe on their bikes. We hope our campaign will encourage cyclists to wear protective clothing and cycle safely and help motorists be more aware of bikes on the roads.”
Halfords Paul McClenaghan said: “We are delighted to be involved in the Cycle Safer campaign and feel just as strongly as the hospital staff about keeping cyclists safe. Cyclists must take steps to see and be seen. Wearing brightly coloured, reflective clothing, helmets and fitting effective bike lights are safety measures we want to actively encourage people to take when cycling. At Halfords we work hard to make these products available at great value for our customers.”
Every year in this country around 19,000 cyclists are involved in reported road accidents, including about 3000 who are seriously injured and 107 who are killed.
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Halfords is the UK's largest bike and accessories retailer, with over 460 superstores. Our wide range includes road, MTB, BMX, town and trail and includes leading bike brands Boardman, Voodoo and Carrera. We build every bike purchased free of charge and also offer our customers a free six week safety check.
Halfords www.cycle2work.info provides a one stop cycle2work package for employers and employees. As the scheme's pioneers we are able to supply virtually all bike brands available in the UK through both our own stores and Independent Bike Shop partners.