QLD enquiry into cycling
Formal name: Report No. 39 – Inquiry into Cycling Issues by the Transport, Housing and Local Government Committee – “A new direction for cycling in Queensland”. The report has over 200 pages, and resulted in 68 recommendations.
Lead Agency for the implementation: Department of Transport and Main Roads, QLD
Received 106 written submission (the BTA made a submission as well)
Public hearings in four locations, with 38 witnesses. Transcript of Proceedings
Round table discussion with 10 participants
Best recent effort by any Australian state to address cycling issues.
Website with all relevant links.
Summary of Recommendations
Cycling statistics –
Four recommendations to do with data collection with the purpose to get consistent and reliable data of cycling participation and accidents
Change hierarchy to put vulnerable road users at the top. Laws to make heavier vehicles responsible for lighter vehicles (cars give way to cycles, cycles give way to pedestrians), and reviewing speed limits with cyclists in mind. Generally strengthening road rules to address accidental or intentional dangerous driving those impacts on cyclists. Inflicting injury or death on a cyclist becomes a criminal offence and cyclists become subject to the same penalties as cars when they endanger other road users.
Passing distance 1 meter up to 60 kmh, 1.5 meters above that speed, with penalties for non compliance up to 8 demerit points and up to $4400 fines.
Motorised wheelchair benefiting from the same overpassing distances.
Recommendations supporting the implementation of the passing distance laws.
Trial on non-compulsory helmets for people over 16 riding on roads with speeds of 60 kmh or less.
Allow rolling stops and left turn on red for bicycles, as well as the use of pedestrian crossings.
Allow bicycles to use roundabouts like cars, and remove obligation for cars to keep close to the left shoulder of roads.
Bicycle lanes to become clearways in morning and evening peak hours.
Bicycles to have lights on at all times, and warn pedestrians before passing.
Cycling infrastructure and facilities
Twenty recommendations dealing with the planning, design and construction of road infrastructure with cyclists in mind.
Calls for cycling infrastructure plans for Queensland and all larger agglomerations. New infrastructure to be built according to Austroads standards and best practice, existing infrastructure to be surveyed and upgraded to appropriate standards as required.
The state government to be responsible for relevant guidelines to local governments.
Education and awareness
Calls for signage and programs to increase awareness of existing and new rules in regards to vulnerable road users
Road safety spending on cycling awareness to be at least proportional to the number of cyclists in the population (18% in 2011)
Cycling awareness to be part of theoretical and practical driving assessment for all classes of drivers, and part of relevant supporting literature
Promote cycling to school schemes
Recommendations by Government Department
(for West Australia)
Police or Office of Road Safety
|Review all relevant legislation and sub-ordinate legislation to ensure that road rules and definitions accurately and consistently recognise cyclists as legitimate road users and, where appropriate, amend road rules to reflect the general principle that all road users must acknowledge the presence of and give right of way to the more vulnerable road user (for example, motor vehicles giving way to cyclists and cyclists giving way to pedestrians).||
|Amend road rule section 144 to introduce a minimum overtaking distance by inserting a new provision specifying that a sufficient distance for overtaking a bicycle means:|
a) a lateral distance of not less than 1 metre if the applicable speed limit does not exceed 60 km/h
b) a lateral distance of not less than 1.5 metres if the applicable speed limit exceeds 60 km/h.
Penalty for failing to comply with amended Queensland road rule section 144 set out in Recommendation 8:
a) a maximum fine of 40 penalty units (that is maximum $4,400) and
b) a maximum loss of 8 demerit points.
Motorised wheelchairs also to be protected by the minimum overtaking distance legislation
Initiate extensive community awareness campaign both prior to, and following the introduction of the new minimum overtaking distance regulations and that this campaign incorporates humanising cyclists in a way the
general public can identify with them.
Ensure all Queensland drivers, and drivers across the nation who might drive in Queensland are made aware of the new minimum overtaking distance requirement
Develop guidelines and an education campaign to inform drivers on ways in which they can avoid close interaction with cyclists
New road rule to accompany the minimum overtaking distance:
A driver on a two-way road without a dividing line or median strip may drive to the right of the centre of the road to overtake the rider of a bicycle if the driver can do so safely or
drive to the right of a dividing line, single continuous line, or 2 parallel continuous lines to overtake the rider of a bicycle if the driver can do so safely;
otherwise the driver must wait until it is safe to overtake the rider of a bicycle.
A driver who performs an overtaking action as above must signal this right and left change of direction in accordance with Queensland road rules sections 46-48.
Introduce a 24 month trial which exempts cyclists aged 16 years and over from the mandatory helmet road rule when riding in parks, on footpaths and shared/cycle paths and on roads with a speed limit of 60 km/hr or less and develop an evaluation strategy for the trial which includes baseline measurements and data
Introduce an exemption from Queensland road rule 256 for all cyclists age 16 years and over using a bicycle from a public or commercial bicycle hire scheme.
Introduce regulations to ensure that parents of children (15 years and under) are liable to pay the penalty where their child is found to be riding without a helmet.
Allow for a ‘rolling stop’ rule which permits cyclists to treat stop signs as give way signs where it is safe to do so.
Allow a ‘left turn on red permitted after stopping’ rule for cyclists at red lights.
Permit cyclists to ride on a pedestrian crossing (Zebra) or children’s crossing and amend Queensland road rule section 81 so that a driver must give way to cyclists using a pedestrian crossing or children’s crossing.
Consider the impact on cyclists of any changes to speed limits when reviewing transport-related policies and strategies
Remove Queensland road rule section 119 ‘Giving way by the rider of a bicycle or animal to a vehicle leaving a roundabout’.
Amend all Queensland road rules relating to road user conduct/actions on roundabouts to provide for cyclists 24to enter and exit a roundabout from the centre of the lane.
amend Queensland road rule section 129 so that motorists are not required to keep to the far left side of the road unless it is impracticable to do so.
Specify that bicycle lanes are clearways between 6-9am and 3-7pm on weekdays
The rider of a bicycle riding on a length of road with a bicycle lane designed for bicycles travelling in the same direction as the rider should ride in the bicycle lane unless it is impracticable to do so.
Remove the requirement in road rule (section 258) for a bicycle to have a bell in working order and insert a new requirement into the road rules that a bicycle rider must give an audible warning of their presence as near as practicable to, but before reaching, a pedestrian or a cyclist they are approaching or passing.
Make it compulsory for a flashing or steady light that is clearly visible for at least 200 metres to be displayed on the front and rear of a bicycle, or the cyclist, at all times
Introduce a criminal offence of “Infliction of Injury or Death to Vulnerable Road Users which incorporates a range of penalties that include maximum penalties that are tougher than the existing penalty framework
Increase infringement penalty units for cyclists to equal those for motorists where the potential to endanger other road users is greatest.
Undertake a review to assess the effectiveness of current road rules, demerit point schedules and the criminal code in protecting vulnerable road users and make recommendations for future law reform in Queensland to provide improved safety for vulnerable road
Introduction of specific provisions and tougher penalties relating to Menacing and Predatory Road Behavior, leaving the scene of an accident and ‘dooring’.
Implement lower enforceable speed limits in the approach to and at roundabouts in declared shared road user zones
Education campaigns to be funded and implemented urgently, to include any of the changes that are introduced as a result of the recommendation contained in this Report and also encompass (but not be limited to):
? Road rules and responsibilities, specifically as they relate to cyclists, awareness of penalties, roundabouts, overtaking (cyclists overtaking cars and motorists overtaking bicycles), left turns on red lights, entitlement to road use (including how road infrastructure is funded), vulnerable road user principles/liability, dooring, rolling stop.
Proportion of the annual road safety budget dedicated to education and awareness between cyclists and drivers be at least proportional to the representation of cyclists in the Australian population (around 18% in
Collaboratively work with organisations involved in cycling safety with a view to sharing resources to achieve efficiency and greater safety outcomes.
Include cycling related material in both the written and practical driver’s licence testing. Specifically:
? mandatory inclusion of at least 5% (or 2 questions, whichever is higher) about road rules relating to cycling in the theoretical/written component of driver’s licence testing and
? mandatory inclusion of interaction with cycling related infrastructure in the practical component of driver’s licence testing.
Develop a simple form of road rules revision (such as a short, online, open-book check list) which should be promoted in driver’s licence renewal, registration and traffic offence notices.
Consolidation of all cycling related information in the Your Keys to Driving in Queensland driver’s licence guide into one distinct section.
road-sharing training and education compulsory for all professional bus, taxi and truck drivers as part of obtaining their operating licences
Consider re-prioritising implementation of the Queensland Cycle Strategy 2011-2021 Signature Project 2.1 (pilot and deliver nationally-accredited bicycle education programs suitable for children and adults).
Implement the recommendations contained in this Report independently of whether they are agreed to nationally through the national road rule process.
Department of Transport, MainRoadsWA, BikeWest
Department of Transport and Main Roads to have lead agency status, and be appropriately resourced
Measure bicycle participation and mode of transport share
Centralised data collection and reporting for on- and off-road cyclist injuries and fatalities.
Facilitate bicycle-related incident reporting
Document the incidence of bicycle-related injuries on roads
Develop “vulnerable road user hierarchy” policy which promotes ‘active’ and ‘public’ transport over existing primary road user categories and that the hierarchy be adopted in the relevant planning instruments and transport infrastructure regulations.
Recommends that the registration of bicycles not be introduced in Queensland
Develop a Queensland Cycle Infrastructure Standard to guide the design and placement of bicycle network infrastructure
Establish an amalgamated state-wide cycle network database and infrastructure quality assessment monitoring which assesses infrastructure against the adopted Queensland Cycle Infrastructure Standards (see recommendation 35).
Ensure the Austroads ‘standard’ is applied (as a minimum) for the placement of dedicated bicycle lanes, ensuring that bicycle lanes are provided adequate space away from “dooring” area of parked cars. Where the above standards cannot be met, bicycle lanes be removed and replaced with alternative cycle facilities that do not compromise the safety of cyclists and other road users. Where parking zones are present adjacent to a designated bicycle lanes that ‘kerbside running’ bicycle lanes, which position the cyclist to the left of parked cars and moving traffic between the curb and the car zone (also known as Copenhagen bicycle lanes) be adopted
Replace the current use of Bicycle Awareness Zones associated line markings with the more widely used and easily recognizable “sharrows” placed in the centre of the shared lane space. Make it clear that advisory markings have only a limited use, restricted to lower speed and lower volume traffic conditions in accordance with the best practice. Awareness campaign to explain the concept to all road users of “shared” zones
If recommendations 37 and 38 are not be adopted, review the current placement and use of on-road bicycle to determine if they are meeting their intended objectives and providing for the safety of cyclists and other road users.
Ensure that the Austroads ‘standard’ is applied (as a minimum) for the installation and treatment of off-road shared user pathways and cycleways. Specifically address:
? the use of consistent advisory speed limits on shared pathways and cycleways
? optimal use of separation, line markings and signage on shared pathways and cycleways and
? placement of cycle-friendly kerb mounts and footpath connections installed at the entry and exit points to on-road cycle lanes
Review best practice design options for roundabouts; and ensure that road authorities adopt best practice design standards for all new and upgraded roundabout projects along principal high frequency cycle routes.
Recognise that, in the absence of fully separated/buffered bicycle lanes, the preferred and legal action at roundabouts is for cyclists to ‘control the lane’ whereby the cyclist merges with other road users and enters/travels through the roundabout from the centre of the lane.
Review the safety of current bicycle lanes placed around the outside of roundabouts in declared shared road user zones, to provide either fully separated/buffered bicycle lanes or amend road markings and signage to accommodate the ‘control the lane’ approach.
Facilitate a trial of the use of bicycle storage areas, hook turn storage areas, and advanced Stop/Give Way line markings at a greater number of intersections across Queensland. Should the trial prove successful in improving the safety outcomes for cyclists, include bicycle storage areas, hook turn storage areas, and advanced Stop/Give Way line markings as ‘standards’ for intersections along principle cycle routes.
Consider the adoption as a standard for cycle network planning and provision one or both of the following principles:
? Connectivity Principle: That no bicycle lane would be more than 1.5km from another in the inner suburbs, and no more than three kilometres between bicycle lanes in outer suburbs.
? ‘Every Street’ Principle: That ‘every street’ be considered a potential cycle route and where possible cycle-friendly treatment be applied to provide for safe and convenient use by cyclists alongside other road users.
Develop a Principal Bicycle Network plan for all major city centres across Queensland which maps out an integrated network of priority bicycle routes.
Identify a list of all existing cycling infrastructure and routes not considered “adequate” and prioritise upgrades to these facilities as the first step towards delivering a Principal Bicycle Network.
“Mandatory” consideration and compliance with the following cycling policies in all new and upgrade road projects (local, state and federal; public and private proponents):
? Cycling Infrastructure Policy and
? Road User Hierarchy and
? Principal Bicycle Network plan.
Transparent reporting and benchmarking of the application of the above policy for mandatory consideration of cycling facilities and the road user hierarchy in all major infrastructure developments and road upgrade projects (public and private)
Review and update existing guidelines to reflect Australian and international design standards for cycling infrastructure
Engage with all relevant local, state and federal authorities to ensure state-wide coverage of policies recommended above and to ensure consistency across Queensland in design standards for cycling infrastructure.
Review the current integration of cycling infrastructure with
public transport networks including consideration of:
? policies and provisions to allow for the carrying of bicycles on public transport across the state’s public transport network and
? provision and placement of bicycle storage facilities at all major public transport interchanges and stations.
Develop a state-wide cycle network maintenance protocol which maps out all bicycle network facilities and allocates clear responsibility and funding requirements for maintenance across local, state and federal road authorities.
Introduce a bicycle network ‘black spot’ reporting system which provides a process by which road users can nominate or report “inadequate” infrastructure and maintenance issues
Guidelines for construction and road work sites to give due consideration to and minimise hazards to cyclists.
Install suitable permanent roadside signs depicting required driver-bicycle interaction as part of the introduction of new minimum overtaking distance laws.
Incorporate social marketing principles as extensively as appropriate into the education and awareness campaigns recommended in this Report.
Implement a single, short form code of conduct brochure to be widely distributed to replace the multiple documents produced by multiple agencies throughout Queensland.
Promote the Bicycle Train (Bike Bus) scheme to schools throughout Queensland and that schools be more actively supported to implement the scheme in their school communities.
Consider the suggestions for new education and awareness initiatives made in submissions to this Inquiry with a view to incorporating them into the broader education and awareness campaign as appropriate
Implement the recommendations contained in this Report independently of whether they are agreed to nationally through the national road rule process.