The RACE Real Automóvil Club de España is proposing that the points system for traffic infringements (and so also a licence) be extended to cyclists. Its director for road safety, Tomás Santa Cecilia, is also wanting cyclists to have insurance and bikes to be registered.
All this, he believes, would assist in reducing the number of road accidents. It would also mean that people using any type of vehicle, bikes included, would be subject to rules (and fines) related to the use of alcohol and drugs, respect for pedestrians and traffic lights, and the use of mobiles. "Any vehicle must comply with minimum standards and safety assurances."
Santa Cecilia is stressing the need for obligatory insurance, while he also wants there to be a census (i.e. registration) of bikes which could help to reduce theft and facilitate the recovery of stolen bikes. Furthermore, he has raised the possibility of there being some form of validation in order to obtain a cycling permit. With or without this, he insists that "standards should apply equally to everyone with no exceptions".
As for children, Santa Cecilia advocates schools and various associations conducting a greater number of educational campaigns aimed at road safety, the rational use of bikes and consideration given to pedestrian safety.
Opposition to these proposals has come from Ramón Ledesma of Pons Seguridad Vial, a leading consultancy on road safety. He suggests that there should be no place for such measures, arguing that they would not reduce accidents. "Cyclists are knocked down. They do not generate mortality."
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