"It is well known from multiple surveys here and abroad that lack of cycling infrastructure and concerns for safety are the reasons people do not cycle"
The dogma of the goal to increase cycling participation by "Making bike riding easy for everyone" “making it easier for people to take up riding” or the focus on encouraging/ increasing cycling “participation”
Bicycle Victoria’s Report into Cycle Deaths in Victoria (2002).
Tensions rise between cyclists and motorists in Melbourne
- Herald Sun
- February 13, 2013
Which side are you on? Have your say below.
One man told of how he momentarily lost control of his car on Beach Rd after a cyclist tossed the contents of his water bottle into his face through the window after an altercation.
Another said he had been the victim of a hit-run by a cyclist on the Yarra Trail track, in which he had bones broken.
He said the speeding cyclists responsible failed to stop.
A mother who lives near part of the Yarra track said she was keen to use it but feared taking her child there due to the dangerous riding of speeding cyclists.
Another caller accused cycle commuters on the track of "trying to set a PB (personal best) time every day" on the way to and from work, putting pedestrians on the shared track at risk.
Several callers rang to say Beach Rd had become unacceptably dangerous for drivers on weekends due to large groups of riders who sometimes rode three abreast, which is legal during overtaking.
Others said so many incidents were occurring that cyclists must be registered so they could be identified, and some called mandatory insurance to be introduced for riders, as is necessary for vehicle drivers.
Bicycle Network Victoria's Gary Brennan said the fact infrastructure in Melbourne had not kept up with the huge increase in cycling numbers was a factor in tensions between cyclists and motorists.
"Part of the reason why there's conflict is there will always be conflict when there is constraint on access (to roads)," he said.
The fact so many new riders were taking to the roads meant there were a big group of "newbie" cyclists who had yet to learn the best way to conduct themselves on the roads, he said.
Also, some "outlier" cyclists were "doing stupid things" and creating risks by using apps to record competing times on some segments of busy commuter bike paths.
A caller who claimed to have clocked cyclists at 35km/h on some stretches of Gardiner's Creek path was probably correct, he said.
In fact, Mr Brennan said he had clocked riders doing 40km/h on a stretch between Toorak Road and Waverley.
A "small group" of riders was involved, he said, and they were likely to "come unstuck" because if they did cause a serious injury and their times on the app were seen by courts they would be at risk of charges.
He said Melbourne cycling standards and behaviour were better than that in other large Australian cities, because fines were higher.
He was optimistic relations between drivers and cyclists would improve, because so many Melburnians are taking up cycling that soon there will be few people who don't know someone who has abandoned cars for bikes, and this would make more drivers sympathetic to the needs and problems of cyclists.