'Crazy' cyclist pictured risking a child's life

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A HORRIFIED car passenger took this picture of man riding a bike along one of the busiest streets in the city – with a small child perched on his shoulders.

A HORRIFIED car passenger took this picture of man riding a bike along one of the busiest streets in the city – with a small child perched on his shoulders.Seemingly oblivious to the dangers of speed bumps, parked cars, and passing vehicles the cyclist put the child's life at risk as he or she clung round the man's neck.

Today, appalled road safety experts branded the cyclist's behaviour as "crazy" after The Evening Telegraph showed them copies of the picture. It was taken on a mobile phone by a reader who was in the front passenger seat of a car following the bike along hectic Taverners Road close to the city centre in Millfield.

What do you think? Have you witnessed similar cylist stupidity@ Comment below or email the editor with your view at eteditor@peterboroughtoday.co.uk

The road is so busy and dangerous that the city council put down a series of high speed bumps in an attempt to slow through traffic from Bourges Boulevard to Lincoln Road and intersecting vehicles from Cromwell Road and Gladstone Street.

Hitting one of the bumps badly or taking evasive action in getting round one of the parked cars could have sent the child flying into the road – with terrible consequences.

Our reader, who does not want to be named, said he was appalled at the risk to the child who must have been only about two years old.

He said: "I can't believe someone would be so stupid. It's a busy road and there are parked cars and obstacles all the way along it.

"If the child had fallen he would have cracked his head open as he wasn't even wearing a helmet."

IF you witness something unacceptable and capture it on your mobile phone, text the word PETPICS followed by a space and a message to 07840 669770 and attach the image by mms.

Today, both Peterborough City Council and Cambridgeshire police thanked The Evening Telegraph for bringing it to their attention.

Council road safety office Clair George said: "We think it is really irresponsible and highly dangerous. He is putting the child at great risk as well as himself. His actions are crazy, I have never seen anything like it."

"If the child falls to the ground from that height and hits his head he will suffer serious, if not fatal, injuries.

"It is a busy road with lots of speed bumps on it. Cars travel up and down it all the time.

"There are appropriate child safety seats to buy for bicycles, and I urge parents who cycle to make sure their bike is kitted out appropriately."

Casualty reduction officer for Cambridgeshire police, Pc Tony Barrios, condemned the cyclist's behaviour as "absolutely foolish".

He said: "It is totally irresponsible for an adult to put a child in danger in this manner.

"There is an offence of carrying two persons on a bike, which could see both parties prosecuted, although in this instance the second person was a child which is absolutely foolish."

Pc Barrios added that the cyclist could have been arrested for dangerous driving if he had been spotted by a police officer.

In 2004, there were 106 fatal, serious and slight reported incidents involving cyclists in the city. This fell to 92 in 2005, but rose slightly to 95 in 2006. Provisonal figures from January to October 2007, reveal 82 reported accidents.