Improving bicycle safety on our roads

Following the release of the A New Direction for Cycling in Queensland report, which included 68 recommendations to improving bicycle safety on our roads, a new 2 year trial of a ‘one metre rule’ was introduced by the Minister for Transport and Main Roads.

What this rule means is that all motorists must keep a one metre distance when passing a cyclist on the road in a 60 km/h or less speed zone and 1.5 metre distance if travelling in a speed zone over 60 km/h.

It is predicted this rule will be introduced by April 2014. Whilst the purpose of this rule is to keep cyclists safe on our roads, bicycle is also considered a vehicle under Queensland law thus bicycles are also subject to the same rules as motor vehicles.

Some of the existing cycling rules are:

  • Cyclists are allowed to ride on footpaths in Queensland unless there is a NO BICYCLE sign displayed
  • Cyclists must ride within 1.5 metres of the other rider on the road if they are riding 2 abreast
  • Cyclists are permitted to take up a full lane on a multi-lane road, however must keep to the left when riding on a single lane road

To truly keep cyclists safe, further developing dedicated bikeways are a must. Until we have extensive bikeway network across Queensland motorists and cyclists will continue to have to share the road so common sense and courtesy is important. Cyclists need to be better aware of their position on the road causing the least obstruction and motorists need to respect cyclists by being courteous and keeping a safe distance.

Whilst other recommendation from this report are being analysed and considered, both cyclists and motorists are urged to keep each other safe by behaving in a responsible manner.

Remember: Courtesy is a two-way street.

Have you been injured in a Road Accident? Call 13 43 63 to speak with one of our motor vehicle accident lawyers in Queensland.