Cycling in Sydney Australia
A colleague of mine witnessed (yet another) truck pull out of the Shell servo right across the bike path and right in to the path of (yet another) poor cyclist coming down the hill. She stopped, not quite as quickly as he did, to help and it appears he is relatively okay (got up off the deck by himself), unlike his bike, and the truck which now is doing an impression of the cyclist along one panel. Anyone know any more?
What is it going to take to fix this blackspot?
Actually, now that I think about it, this title isn't correct. It should be "Drivers not paying attention at the Shell servo exit on the Epping Rd bike path claim another victim"
Don't support them by bying petrol here. Best hope is they shut down, Lane Cove Tunnel has already made it less viable.
I used to go there for the car wash and vacuums, but these days they seem permanently out of order.
Maybe the rot is setting in.
So I gather no cyclists' protest then? Just a lot of letter writing? This issue was noted in 2010....its still there....
Try getting a protest up anywhere near North Ryde Tech.
Militant student vacuum there!!
I am in Mumbai airport now getting online for the first time in a while after a 1,750km tour of Gujarat. I should add that I was recently "taken out" by a motorist in Sydney who drove straight across the Kent St path without looking for cyclists.
What is the connection?
In the seeming chaos of Indian cities where everyone literally goes everywhere, including many going the wrony direction because they can't quite get over the other side (eg due to long median strip fences), everyone in control of a motor vehicle, motorbike or bicycle is absolutely tuned in and paying attention.
It seems the problem in AU is largely that people, especially motorists with their windows up, AC on, gadgets at hand, pay very little attention to where they are going. Surely no one would deny this. So we talk about more signs. As if they will pay attention to signs.
Everytime I return to Sydney from a tour in India or some other country with chaos on their roads I am struck by these ironies. I ride home or to work from the airport and have to accept that a percentage of other road users are in lala land and there is nothing I can do about it.
How can this ever change? I agree that signs are needed. But maybe nothing short of significant and enforced speed reduction will actually make it a safer city. If people insist on not paying attention but then say SIDSYM after they have driven right over us, what else apart from speed reduction can be expected to actually help save cyclists?
That sounds a bit much like putting a monetary value on a person's life.
That's all cool, but India has an order of magnitude more fatal traffic accidents and over four times the non-fatal traffic accidents:
Fatal reported accidents per 10,000 registered vehicles:
Non-fatal reported accidents per 10,000 registered vehicles:
I would hazzard a guess that Australia keeps more accurate records too, so I would expect India to actually be higher.
And thats from The Who, no not these guys:
Agreed: people in some developing-country contexts apparently less 'in control' of their conveyance are accustomed to others around them being similarly distracted/unskilled/driving with a ridiculously large load, and treat them with appropriate caution. It's one reason I know a few riders here who have a little 'wobble' they'll do just to introduce enough uncertainty and thereby discourage drivers from unsafe overtaking, etc.
(This is not to say that better road safety, vehicle design, etc, etc wouldn't help. Road safety as a development issue = damn interesting, and very big, issue. Lots of distraction-and-procrastination material here: http://www.makeroadssafe.org/Pages/home.aspx .)
PS - Noel, we are all jealous and of course want to see photos of your tour. :-)
Just got a reply from RMS with more promises without any definite timeframe.
RMS agrees that further measures are required to improve the safety for cyclists using the cycleway. Measures considered include adding additional traffic calming devices to encourage motorists to stop before crossing the bicycle path, making signs and line marking more visible and changing the style of fence to improve sight distance for motorists and cyclists while taking into account the safety of cyclists and pedestrians.
RMS will ensure that approved measures will be thoroughly investigated taking into account safety of all users of the shared path and will be implemented as soon as possible.
I had coffee with a cyclist at Pie in the Sky this morning who has been hit twice at the same roundabout in Glenhaven (needless to say he does not cycle that way any more). The scary thing was that both times he was actually on the roundabout and made what he thought was eye contact with the drivers. In both cases they were totally shocked that they hit him, claiming that they did not see him. He believes they were looking "straight through him" as they wanted to check for traffic so they could hurry to get onto the roundabout.
For the record, he was not wearing fluoro clothing but did have a blinking front light (same as when my husband was hit).
The same situation exists at the Shell exit on Epping Road as the drivers are looking for oncoming traffic on the road, not cyclists on the path.
Vulnerable road users take care at all times.