"Seems Chris Grayling the Minister of Transport doesn’t much care for cycle lanes."
Chris Grayling sent cyclist flying with his car door, video showsFilm shows transport secretary knocking Jaiqi Liu over in an incident that left rider in a state of shock by the roadside
Thursday 15 December
Video footage has emerged of the transport secretary, Chris Grayling, knocking over a cyclist and sending his bicycle crashing into a lamppost, in an incident that left the rider in a state of shock by the roadside.
The film obtained by the Guardian shows Grayling swinging open the door of his ministerial car as it sat in traffic outside the Palace of Westminster and the unfortunate Jaiqi Liu attempted to cycle by.
The footage came from a camera mounted on the handlebars of a bike belonging to Laurence de Hoest, a cyclist who was just behind Liu when he was hit.
De Hoest, a business analyst, said he was concerned about the conditions cyclists face. “I ride into London every day and I’ve had a couple of close calls,” he said, “so I record everything. This is the minister of transport and here he is swinging his door out.”
He added that the incident, which occurred on a stretch of road 20 metres before a cycle lane is restored, showed that “your cycle lane is only as good as your weakest link. We need to make sure they are properly connected”.
De Hoest said he was concerned that the transport secretary was insufficiently alert to the risks that his policies, as well as actions, posed.
He too was unaware of Grayling’s identity at the time of the incident, but sent the video to the Guardian after seeing the minister in an interview reported in Cycling Weekly earlier this month, where Grayling had complained that cycle lanes in London “cause too much of a problem for road users”. The minister added: “Motorists in London have got to be immensely careful of cyclists.”
Liu, having learned who Grayling is, told the Guardian: “And he says cycle lanes are the problem, which makes me angry. If he is still in the position to make cities safer for cyclists, he needs to do something.”
A spokesperson for Grayling said: “This was an unfortunate accident. Mr Grayling got out of the car, checked the cyclist was OK and waited until he was back on his feet. Mr Grayling spoke to the cyclist and apologised; they shook hands before he left.”