A desperate need for safer roads
Thu, 26 Jul 2012 7:00p.m.
Following a coronial inquest into the deaths of eight cyclists, coroner Gordon Matenga has recommended compulsory hi-vis for cyclists and forced use of cycle lanes where they exist.
But in the grand scheme of things while those recommendations may save lives, they don't address a much bigger problem facing cyclists - our roads.
Quite simply, they aren't up to scratch.
Take any major city in Europe, even cities in Australia, and cycling infrastructure is miles ahead of New Zealand’s biggest city.
That is changing. Auckland transport has budgeted $127 million for walking and cycling projects over the next 10 years to bring the city's infrastructure up to scratch.
Lachlan Forsyth looks at why it is needed.
Watch the video to see his full report.
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3/08/2012 1:21:07 p.m.
Most of the risk can be addressed by better training & education for all road users.
Cyclists need to take their road code responsibilities seriously, especially the one that requires them to adopt correct road position and lane when their safety would be compromised by staying left, or if they're using an intersection.
Pinch points only pinch when a motorist tries to squeeze through beside a cyclist. As a driver, hang back if in doubt, the road code requires it. As a cyclist, get used to thinking ahead and taking the lane when you need it.
It's hard to be assertive on a bike, but it helps other road users to do the right thing. Check out http://www.cyclecraft.co.uk/ for the skinny.
30/07/2012 7:41:07 a.m.
Roland Hinton wrote:
The roads back in 1967, when I joined the Ministry Of Works was barely 16feet of sealed surface and on many roads in Taranaki and the King Country this was all made usable by moving the markings right out to the edge of the tarred surface, which the larger lorries quicklt destroyed as they had not allowed for the width of the lorries already in surface.Auckland's roads were no better and have not been improved- the MAN buses bought by the ARA, were a standard model 2.6 metrs wide running on many streets which have lanes only 2.4 metres wide. If you look closely of that terrible accident on Tamaki Drive, the pictures show the lorry is the same widrh as the road lane. This does not allow for the side mirrors which in the EU must be large enough to show both side and rear views.Auckland's roads do not have pinch points- they are too narrow and do not meet international safety standards. As I said in NZ,Land Transit requires trains to meet loading gauge requirements but there has never been the same standards of safety applied before the sizes and weights of road vehicles were increased.The New Lynn Bypass along Clarke Street is one of the most recent examples.many imes driving West I have missed the right turn from Wolverton Street onto Portage road because a bus or Hooker Bros lorry going straight ahead occupied both lanes-I would never cross the centreline here as it is too dangerous.A worse example is the New North Road/Blockhouse Bay Road intersec- tion where Westbound traffic regularly backs up and drivers stop over the line as there is insufficient room for 2 let alone those 3 which are marked there.There are too many badly designed and built streets -the simple answer is to enforce the 12 foot rule as the lane width as a minmum The Auckland Council is ultimately responsible for traffic sccesses and failures. ACC shoukd also be involved in getting safety rules enforced and be able to sue as the Public cannot.
28/07/2012 8:04:58 a.m.
Shayne P wrote:
In a new a high density residential/commercial subdivision, the Christchurch City Council has approved pinch points to inject cyclists on dead-ended cycle lanes into the path of trucks and buses on new narrowed roads with required cycle lanes eliminated.
A developer made agreements behind closed doors with council staff to narrow the roads required to be formed so he had more land for profits and less costs in roading. (pre-earthquakes)
The narrow roads fall well short of NZ Safety standards, the councils own Infrastructure Design Standards, the City Plan and the Environment Court requirements for the roads. Council staff then oppressed the affected residents and general public from opposing the breaches of City Plan rules and safety standards.
Senior Management, CE Tony Marryatt and Mayor Bob Parker were alerted to the error by MP Amy Adams, Cr Helen Broughton and affected residents; however they refused to rectify matters.
The Council would have spent over $100,000 defending this error rather than rectifying the dangerous environment they wrongly approved. They are still throwing tens of thousands of dollars into burning off the affected residents efforts to prevent the inevitable manmade injuries and deaths highlighted on your program.
This story needs exposing to prevent a tragedy. Can you please help us?
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