When does death by dangerous cycling become an offence in the UK?

Transport secretary Mark Harper (Lucy North / PA Wire)
Transport secretary Mark Harper (Lucy North / PA Wire)

The Government has agreed to change the law to make dangerous or careless cycling an offence if it causes injury or proves fatal.

The House of Commons on Wednesday voted through an amendment to create three new offences which could see the worst offenders put behind bars for 14 years.

Pedestrian deaths from being hit by cyclists are rare but a woman was killed after being hit by a speeding rider, who was part of a group ride, in Regent’s Park in 2022.

Transport secretary Mark Harper said: “Most cyclists, like most drivers, are responsible and considerate. But it’s only right that the tiny minority who recklessly disregard others face the full weight of the law for doing so.

“Just like car drivers who flout the law, we are backing this legislation introducing new offences around dangerous cycling,” the minister said.

“These new measures will help protect law-abiding cyclists, pedestrians and other road users, whilst ensuring justice is done.”

This is what it means in practice.

When does death by dangerous cycling become an offence?

Transport secretary Mark Harper has confirmed that the Government would adopt the amendment to the Criminal Justice Bill, which is currently making its way through Parliament.

The amendment creates three new offences including “causing death by dangerous cycling”, “causing serious injury by dangerous cycling”, and “causing death by careless or inconsiderate cycling”.

The Government will bring forward an updated amendment to the bill as it enters the House of Lords, where it will be further debated.

From there, it could be passed into legislation or sent back to the Commons for further debate. It is set to be implemented later this year.