Hauliers have reacted angrily to calls for junction rules to be overhauled so that drivers have to give way when turning.
Cycling lobbyists, backed by the AA and former Olympian Chris Boardman, said safety would be boosted if drivers turning at a junction gave way to cyclists on the nearside, or pedestrians crossing the road that was being turned into.
They said the Highway Code needed amending because existing rules are confusing and not sufficiently clear.
But HGV driver Mark Lee said: “I think it will cause more problems than it solves, there will be many headstones with ‘I had right of way’ carved into them.”
And O’Donovan Waste Disposal said the calls were unrealistic and “a step in the wrong direction”.
MD Jacqueline O’Donovan said: “While it sounds like a simple rule, it will actually cause huge confusion between drivers and cyclists when sharing the road, especially in the busiest cities where there are already pre-written and universally acknowledged rules in the Highway Code.
“Placing responsibility solely on the driver completely contradicts the message of collaboration and mutual education we have worked so hard to promote. Road safety will only improve when both parties learn to work together.”
She added: “The cyclist has full visibility of the driver’s movements when approaching from behind on the passenger side, meaning they are equally responsible.”
The RHA said road safety is crucial to all road user groups and so all must be consulted when establishing road safety plans.
It added that problems lay with a lack of compliance and enforcement.
- This article first appeared in Commercial Motor 15 December. Why not subscribe today?