MAKE ROOM: A trial of new minimum passing distance laws is about to end.
MAKE ROOM: A trial of new minimum passing distance laws is about to end. FILE

Cyclists want safety

WITH the statewide trial of the minimum passing distance laws coming to an end, Bicycle Queensland is reiterating the need for bikeway infrastructure and stronger enforcement of dangerous driving to keep bike riders safe.

An evaluation of the two-year trial of the new rules is due to be released soon, as the trial period comes to an end on Thursday, April 7.

Under the laws, motorists must give bike riders a minimum 1m berth while passing them in a 60km/h or less speed zone, and a 1.5m berth where the speed limit is over 60km/h.

The 2015 Bicycle Queensland Members Survey revealed that since the introduction of the laws, 66% of members say they feel safer while riding.

Bicycle Queensland CEO Ben Wilson said while it was encouraging to see riders feeling safer on the roads, more infrastructure was required to really guarantee protection.

“Bicycle Queensland started a campaign 20 years ago for drivers to give riders a metre while driving, and to get legislation changed to reflect our safety concerns for vulnerable road users,” said Mr Wilson.

“Separating riders from vehicles on segregated bikeways will lead to safer conditions and ultimately more people cycling more often.”

With Queensland Police previously admitting they have had difficulty enforcing the minimum passing distance laws, Mr Wilson is also calling for stronger legislation to ensure any drivers who endanger bike riders are caught.

“We still have an issue that police are finding it difficult to enforce the rule, and that the current laws are too forgiving for drivers if they do hit a rider with their vehicle,” he said.

“There needs to be better legislation for enforcement of dangerous driving charges, and police do need help catching drivers who dangerously break the 1m rule.”


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