The warm weather and longer days is making cycling to work enjoyable again. The streets of London are teeming with cyclists riding new bikes bought on their company's Cycle to Work scheme.

Cycling is a brilliant to get stay fit and avoid the stuffy Tube, but unfortunately it's not as safe as it could be.

In my 5 miles commute to work there is only one stretch of dedicated cycle lane. The rest of the route you're taking your chances with London's traffic.

It can be a scary place. The rush hour puts you in the path of taxis, buses, motorbikes, bendy buses, private cars and most imtimidating of all, dirty great trucks.

HGVs are involved in 39% of all cycling fatalities and many of those are construction vehicles. These include the tragic death of architect Rebecca Goosen, who was killed in a collision with  a 32-tonne cement mixer last year in Islington.

I recently had the chance to join cement mixer driver Jason Stockham on a trip through central London to try and understand why HGVs are involved in so many accidents.

The first thing that is apparent is how much safety kit is fitted. Every Cemex truck is fitted with six mirrors, caution signs and side sensors which automatically sound a warning if a cyclist is too close.

TfL want firms to go further. Its Cycle Safety Action Plan proposes that HGVs have side guards fitted between the front wheels to prevent cyclists from being dragged under the truck.  

The gap between the front axels is what makes large 32-tonne trucks so potentially dangerous.  

If a large lorry turns in front of  you and a barrier cuts off an escape route there is a good chance that you will fall between the large gap separating the two sets of the lorry's front wheels (known as the steer).

"Accidents with buses don't tend to lead to fatalities because the bodywork reaches the ground," says Jason. 

The TfL aren't proposing mandatory side guards for construction trucks. Having seen the dangers, I can't understand why.

It's not only the regulators who could do more to make cycling safer, it's the cyclists themselves.

Jason had to be on constant alert for cyclists coming up his inside and jumping red lights.

Jason recently gave safety advice at a special course for cyclists who had been pulled over by the police for dangerous cycling. This is what he told them:

Jason's tips for safe cycling

Don't wear black

Wear brightly coloured clothing and buy the strongest and best lights you can get your hands on. " You go to a cycling shop and there's nothing but black. I'll do my best to see you but I can't guarantee that I will always see you there."

Assume nobody knows how to drive

Cyclists should treat every driver as a bad driver and vice versa. In other words give other road users more time and space. "Assuming I'm a better driver than you just because I'm in a big lorry isn't a good way of keeping yourself safe," says Jason.

Don't overtake on the inside

Wherever possible cyclists should not put themselves between the truck and another obstacle such as parked vehicles or barriers.

Jason says that even with numerous mirrors there is a chance that the driver won't see coming up on the inside of the truck. "At some stage I've have to look from the rear mirror to the near mirror. I can't look everywhere at once."

Take down the barriers

Some of the worse accidents involve cyclists being crushed between barriers and vehicles at junctions. Jason supports council moves to remove the barriers. "If people decide to walk on the road, they'll do it anyway."

Gain eye contact with the driver

If you're stuck in traffic with a large vehicle look in its mirrors to try and get eye contact with the driver. "Do that and then you know that I've seen you. We've all got to be part of the same team," says Jason.

Don't jump red lights

This is self-explantaory. "You get a hell of a lot of red light jumping. A red's a red. I don't get to choose what roads I get to go down, neither should cyclists."

Avoiding waiting in the middle of a green box

Green boxes at traffic lights should offer cyclists sanctuary from vehicles but Jason says they can be potentially dangerous if you position yourself directly in front of a truck, where he can't see you.  "I don't understand the green boxes in front of a truck when there's no right turn. Just because you're in a green box doesn't mean I can automatically see you. There should be more space on the left for cyclists."

Use cycle lanes

Jason would like to see cyclists use the cycle lanes provided by the councils but he admits they're far from perfect. "Cycle lanes stop in the middle of konwhere. We need better lanes."

Be brave and stick your arm out

Jason says cyclists should be confident enough to be able to take their hand off the handlebar and indicate what way they're turning. "If you're an adult and you're scared to cycle on the road, then you shouldn't be cycling," says Jason.

For a a closer understanding of the potential dangers watch this video showing cyclists from a Cemex driver's perspective