The independent London newspaper

HGVs are deadly and damaging

30 August, 2018

Dr Peter Fisher

• HOW shocked and saddened we were to read that Dr Peter Fisher was killed by a heavy goods vehicle while cycling near his workplace in Holborn, (Safety protest planned as Queen’s doctor named as fourth cyclist killed at blackspot in five years, August 16).

Dr Fisher was an outstanding doctor in a leading role at the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine in Great Ormond Street, itself a centre of excellence.

The Queen chose Dr Fisher as her physician precisely because he was such an outstanding doctor. Dr Fisher also found time to help ordinary patients at the RLHIM. Last week one of us met a lady who he cured of tennis elbow through acupuncture.

Dr Fisher’s use and advocacy of homoeopathic medicine was more controversial. We have had positive experiences of homoeopathic treatment which takes some time to take effect.

HGVs are all right on motorways. However they do not stop when they reach the outskirts of London. They pound over London’s roads and streets that were never made for them. Under many of these roads and streets are water mains and other public utilities.

The damage done to a road or street by a vehicle is proportional to the fourth power of the axle weight of the vehicle.

For example, a vehicle with an axle weight 10 times the axle weight of another vehicle will do 10,000 times as much damage to the road and what lies underneath as the damage done by the other vehicle. Hence the continual occurrence of fractured water mains.

HGVs are dangerous and damaging. They need to be replaced by container vehicles on rail tracks, something like those that used to run into Somers Town, Smithfield, and Bishopsgate goods depots.

Increasing numbers of people rightly regard walking or cycling to work as healthful pursuits. However there is simply not enough room on or under London’s streets and roads for HGVs, other traffic, walkers, cyclists and water mains.

Compton Street EC1


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