keep left on shared paths

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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby il padrone » Sun Jan 09, 2011 4:35 pm

blkmcs wrote:As a cyclist you must pull out to overtake a pedestrian that is in the same lane as you whether that pedestrian is walking towards you or in the same direction as you. The pedestrian should never have to change lanes, if passing the pedestrian is not a safe option then you must give way even if that means coming to a complete stop.

Yes, that is the general principle, and the way the overtaking rules work on the road. Most cyclists can cope with this concept, whether as cyclists or as drivers. I know I certainly can.

blkmcs wrote:When I am a cyclist it doesn't bother me which side pedestrians use.

When I am cycling I do not want some pedestrian, walking in my direction on the right, going and blindly stepping in front of me to avoid an oncoming cyclist.

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by BNA » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:09 pm

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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby BigPete » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:09 pm

Very interesting to see how some people validate their reasoning of their views then go and contradict themselves further on. Others are of the view that 'the rules are the rules' and if everyone followed them there would be no problem. Unfortunately we don't live in utopia, hence my original statement that pedestrians face cyclists on shared pathways.
As for pedestrians and vehicular traffic on roads where there are no separate footpaths for pedestrians, where pedestrians face the traffic, the same should apply on shared pathways. A bike is a vehicle and the pedestrians don’t have a separate path. So why have different rules?
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby human909 » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:27 pm

I don't really care as long a pedestrians act predictably. Have a look at road traffic overseas in places like vietnam. Pedestrians, bikes, motorbike, cars & bus all using the road in a seemingly random fashion. As long as you don't dart in front of other vehicles your should be fine.

It is a pity that some pedestrians in Australia don't get this concept. Most however are fine. Personally though it just makes sense, keep left whenever you are using road infrastructure.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby brentono » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:32 pm

BigPete,
I understood were you were coming from, right from the get-go.
Your new here, on the forum, and you will soon see, that logic might not cut it here.

I agree with you, "pedestrians face cyclists on shared pathways"... it seems too obvious. 8)

And your original point (as many here may realise, if they did it) in a car, or on a bike,
you said "dark dressed pedestrians on dimly lit, wet paths" ... and the point for the others is (!)
if they were facing you, you would see the reflection off their faces,
as against the darkness of the REAR, as you run into them... (as the opposition/others propose)

It's just common sense
(which means it will probably would be very difficult to implement these days)

... my earlier statement still stands :roll:
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby il padrone » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:35 pm

BigPete wrote:As for pedestrians and vehicular traffic on roads where there are no separate footpaths for pedestrians, where pedestrians face the traffic, the same should apply on shared pathways. A bike is a vehicle and the pedestrians don’t have a separate path. So why have different rules?

Very different situations. Pedestrians are users of shared use paths. Bikes are the 'guests' on shared paths. Cyclists, legally, must at all times yield to pedestrians no matter where they choose to walk.

On roads with no footpath pedestrians are to walk on the shoulder rather than the road pavement, and are expected to keep to the left, or right, as the case may be. There is no requirement for pedestrians to walk towards oncoming traffic.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby brentono » Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:45 pm

There is no requirement for pedestrians to walk towards oncoming traffic.


No, It's just common sense :wink:

If, and it's a BIG "IF" ... we COULD make it a requirement, and educate the public, accordingly
(as they did here 40 years ago)... it may be helpful, and solve any confusion.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby BigPete » Sun Jan 09, 2011 6:10 pm

brentono, I have quickly learnt there is not necessarily logic to many statements made, but that is how a free country operates.
As for rules:-
In Queensland it is a rule that pedestrians face traffic where no footpath is available, but only when they are going forward. So I guess if you walk backwards the rule does not apply (sections 238 part 2).
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby RosscoG » Sun Jan 09, 2011 7:49 pm

This is all very amusing. I do not know which is better, correct, law, etc.... but.
I opened this thread for a look as this happened to me today and I don't know if I have ever seen it or realized before. I knew of the walk to oncoming theory/rule but only that it applied in some limited situations regarding a road with cars and no shoulder/footpath. I would never expect it in on a shared path.
To me, I find it very disconcerting with people walking toward me on a bike. It is confusing and creates that last second decision to disaster, hesitant kind of situation.
Have they just wandered to their right, walking on the right, or just not caring/concentrating at all?

Q. If two peds are coming toward you on either side of the road, do you assume that one is walking to oncoming and the other is going with the flow and just dive right through between them? even if they are holding hands? ;) *sarcasm/satire*

Situation today. Bike path (actually dedicated bike only so this doesn't really count, just an example), came over a crest and there was a sporty runner type walking towards me on "my side" clearly looking right at me. I slowed to watch what he was going to do and then moved right to ride around him as he was very set on his line. 20m further and another one stepped out from behind a pylon to walk on his left side past me and then ducked over and walked on his right side past the bike behind me!???

Everyone I normally pass walking on a shared path here, Brisbane walks with the flow and generally holds their line if you call "passing right" or "on your right".
I had no idea there was any confusion or inconsistency at all?
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby wombatK » Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:42 pm

BigPete wrote:What is the difference between pedestrians on a road to pedestrians on a bike path? .

Firstly, to be pedantic, it is illegal for a pedestrian to walk along a road where a footpath is provided unless it is impractical to do so. The rules relating to how a pedestrian should do are meant to apply in where there isn't a footpath and are really trying to make the best of what is fundamentally a bad and unsafe situation.

It is not illegal for a pedestrian to walk on a shared bicycle path. So, at least officially, we are not trying to make the best of a bad and unsafe situation. Looking at some arithmetic will show why...

Pedestrian walks towards car at 5 kph, car moves at 50 kph. Closing speed is 55 kph. If pedestrian is walking in same direction as car, closing speed is 45 kph. Car ways 1500 kg or more, so there's a huge force in a collision even at 45 kph. It might be 20% less than at 55 kph, but pedestrian still gets killed.

If pedestrian walks towards car, he may have some small chance of taking avoidance action. Whatever very slim chance the pedestrian might have is better than nothing, so that tips the balance in favour of the legal requirement to walk towards the traffic.

For a cyclist moving at say 25 kph, closing speed is 30 kph v's 20 kph. That's a 30% difference in the forces involved in any collision. Cyclist and bicycle ways less than 120 kg, and with the lower speed & masses involved, there is much better chance the pedestrian would survive the collision at 20 kph. The chances are even better against less capable cyclists. And things get much worse for the pedestrian if they are one of the running species traveling at 15 kph towards a cyclist v's 15 kph away from the cyclist.

So it makes no sense to advise the pedestrian to give himself a 30% or more greater chance of injury by walking or running towards the cyclist.

My experience with pedestrians walking towards me on the right of shared paths is that they are much harder to deal with - you don't know whether they will jump left, right or freeze where they are, whereas those who walk on the left never jump right i.e. will move left off the path, or at least freeze.

Any campaign to suggest to pedestrians that they walk or run on the right of shared paths will only introduce greater uncertainty and confusion, and will be detrimental to everyone's safety.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby zero » Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:13 am

blkmcs wrote:
zero wrote:...This is the dumbest thing I've ever read on this subject and had I not been able to halt altogether, I would have been bumped clear onto the western distributor by a walker like you.

Bicycles approach from both directions, if you face the traffic, the bicycle riders WILL expect you to get OUT of their lane (as they are obliged to keep left legally), and when you do, you will simply step into the path of another bicycle coming from behind - it doesn't matter which lane you stand in, there will be bicycles coming from behind. Facing traffic works for pedestrians on the road, because the expectation is the pedestrian will vacate the roadway altogether on approach of oncoming traffic -which is commonly impossible on shared paths, because they have fences / bridge abutments / roads other obstacles on both sides. The only place you can go is into the other lane. It doesn't work.

Have you given any thought to what you just posted?
As a cyclist you must pull out to overtake a pedestrian that is in the same lane as you whether that pedestrian is walking towards you or in the same direction as you. The pedestrian should never have to change lanes, if passing the pedestrian is not a safe option then you must give way even if that means coming to a complete stop.
It will take the same amount of space to pass them whether they are facing you or have their back to you.
When I am a pedestrian I feel much safer walking on the left where I can see oncoming cyclists.
When I am a cyclist it doesn't bother me which side pedestrians use.


It doesn't matter what you think pedestrians are or aren't required to do - the ones that walk on the wrong side are notorious for changing lanes on approach of oncoming cycles without looking behind them - the cycles are required by law to attempt to pass oncoming things on the left - so even if they will pass on the right, many of them will start out on the left and that reliably starts unnecessary games of chicken. You can't even bell or voice them from behind, because they look up see the cycle and presume thats where the sound is coming from...

When you walk on the wrong side of a road - you gain 3 - 4m side clearance from cars behind you - that is the fundamental safety improvement. When you walk on the wrong side of a marked share path, you gain no extra clearance from bicycles coming from behind you at all - which means you don't gain any safety benefit at all. ie the bike coming closely from behind, is still coming closely from behind, and imo - more likely to go through even faster - because you no longer impede their path.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby brentono » Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:45 am

BigPete wrote:brentono, I have quickly learnt there is not necessarily logic to many statements made, but that is how a free country operates.


+1 Some of the statements here, with isolated examples, almost leave you wondering, if they are real. :roll:

While out walking, on the right side of the path, cyclists (travelling on the left)
pass me and we don't even notice each other.
As I walk, and a cyclist approaches me, I can clearly see them coming, I maintain my line.
If they are the moron type, so engrossed, and they don't move to the centre,
and pass me comfortably (as would be normal), and continue straight at me,
I have the ability, to jump to my right, away from the path, and danger.
Seems quite simple for me, and works.
And as an added bonus, if the approaching cyclist, is a normal type,
I have eye-to-eye contact, and can exchange a greeting (and cement cyclist/peds relations :) )
"IF" they are that type of social person, (on or off the bike and some won't even do it, bike-bike)
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby zero » Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:49 am

brentono wrote:I have the ability, to jump to my right, away from the path, and danger.


All of the shared paths I ride on, have a road on one side, and a wall/fence/bridge abutment on the other, and the only place you can jump is onto the road, or into the potential path of another cyclist.

Some of the statements here, with isolated examples, almost leave you wondering, if they are real


You could always try engaging the replies made instead of making trite dismissals.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby brentono » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:12 am

zero wrote:
brentono wrote:I have the ability, to jump to my right, away from the path, and danger.


All of the shared paths I ride on, have a road on one side, and a wall/fence/bridge abutment on the other, and the only place you can jump is onto the road, or into the potential path of another cyclist.

Some of the statements here, with isolated examples, almost leave you wondering, if they are real


You could always try engaging the replies made instead of making trite dismissals.


I am not here to engage with you (as you put it) ...
And you hardline, almost mimicks, and envokes my thoughts, of cyclists who have
put me in danger, while walking... do you visit W.A. much :|
I have made my point of view, with respect to the OP, and will do what works for me.
There seems to be little commonsense being shown here, and when terms like
"closing speeds" and "laws" and "rights" are used, it's easy to see there is going to
be little consesus, which is probably why "the powers that be" have little interest
in the subject.
My opinion, my thoughts, and I will leave it at that.
(been in most cycling situations, in my time,
and know with the new era of cycling participants, it's going to get pedantic)
I'll just stick with commonsense.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby thomashouseman » Mon Jan 10, 2011 11:31 am

I like what they do in Parramatta Park.

1 narrowish lane on the very left for pedestrians, 1 slightly wider lane in the middle for cyclists and a wide car lane on the right for cars.

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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby zero » Mon Jan 10, 2011 11:34 am

brentono wrote:
zero wrote:
You could always try engaging the replies made instead of making trite dismissals.


I am not here to engage with you (as you put it) ...
And you hardline, almost mimicks, and envokes my thoughts, of cyclists who have
put me in danger, while walking... do you visit W.A. much :|


Its a pretty poor point you are making - insinuating that I am a danger instead of addressing the actual point of the debate. My riding behavior is always recorded and occasionally on show on youtube - and the first thing you'll notice is that under any circumstances on a shared path, I reduce speed to the extent that I can stop to avoid a pedestrian when near them - also something I've advocated often enough in posts. Pretty much an ad hominem argument really.

In the particular circumstance we are discussing, the practice of slowing considerably around pedestrians probably saved my life, as I would have been bumped by someone walking as you advocate - onto the city west link into oncoming 70km/hr traffic. Walking on the wrong side causes confusion, and the outlet you require - (space to the right) doesn't always exist. Walking on the left - always works, and passing by bicycles around you will be smoother and less dangerous.

http://maps.google.com.au/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&q=&sll=-33.868906,151.176738&sspn=0.001534,0.003017&ie=UTF8&t=h&rq=1&ev=zi&split=1&filter=0&radius=0.1&hq=victoria+road,+white+bay&hnear=&ll=-33.868899,151.176676&spn=0.001534,0.003017&z=19

That is one of the most heavily frequented share path systems in NSW - and its all fence on one side, road on the other or fence both sides - can't tell me that walking on the right is appropriate or safer there.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby human909 » Mon Jan 10, 2011 11:51 am

zero wrote:You could always try engaging the replies made instead of making trite dismissals.

zero wrote:Its a pretty poor point you are making - insinuating that I am a danger instead of addressing the actual point of the debate.


That his typical tactics I'm afraid. Personally I would rather be rudely insulted or destroyed via argument than deal with his irrelevant dismissals and illogical retorts. It adds nothing to the discussion.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby brentono » Mon Jan 10, 2011 11:58 am

zero wrote:Its a pretty poor point you are making.


Its a pretty poor point you are making, siteing one situation, and trying
to build your whole debate/case/arguement around it.

All situations vary, all people react differently, one policy would help,
in any situation... commonsense should prevail in any situation,
if it was common.

I am not here to debate you, and have only refered to suggestions of
a common practice that has been used and taught historically in Australia.

It works for me, and seems commonsense. You may have your opinion and
do as you please, that is your right. And I will, also.
(That is- Until some concensus is reached, and enforcable laws,
are put in place, which is doubtful)
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby BigPete » Mon Jan 10, 2011 11:59 am

zero wrote:All of the shared paths I ride on, have a road on one side, and a wall/fence/bridge abutment on the other, and the only place you can jump is onto the road, or into the potential path of another cyclist.



Not all shared paths are like this.
Haven’t you have just supported the view that it is safer to walk facing traffic? Even if there were no place to jump, you have a chance of yelling or squeezing up to the fence. You don't have that option if you travel with the traffic! If you did jump to the middle of the pathway you are still reducing the chance of being hit from 100% to a smaller amount. The chance of another cyclist coming the other way at he same time and actually hitting you is less than the 100% collision that was going to occur in the first place.
Now if you were walking with the traffic you would have been hit anyway.

Another point of view others have made is about pedestrians facing traffic are ‘often inconsistent and all over the place’. That occurs in either situation but granted, it may happen more when they face you but that could be due to the fact they know they should be (according to the current requirements) walking on the other side.

Also others have pointed out that a pedestrian being hit by a cyclist head on as opposed to from behind may result in higher injuries. This may well be the case but that was not what my original post was about. My post is about what is safer.

I have been riding/commuting for 19 years. In that time I have hit 2 pedestrians, 1 cyclist and run over 1 dog. Both pedestrians were hit from behind. One was when a group of 4 decided to change from walking 2 abreast to 4 abreast. No amount of yelling stopped them until it was too late. Perhaps too much other noise around them to hear me. No, I did not use the bell as I had 2 hands on the brakes. The other hit from behind was when a walker decided to point something out (to his right) to his mate. I hit his arm. Both these may not have occurred had they been facing me.
As for the dog, it appeared to be okay to both myself and its owner.

I am not suggesting for one moment that facing traffic when walking will stop accidents but IMO it is safer.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby brentono » Mon Jan 10, 2011 12:00 pm

human909 wrote:
zero wrote:You could always try engaging the replies made instead of making trite dismissals.

zero wrote:Its a pretty poor point you are making - insinuating that I am a danger instead of addressing the actual point of the debate.


That his typical tactics I'm afraid. Personally I would rather be rudely insulted or destroyed via argument than deal with his irrelevant dismissals and illogical retorts. It adds nothing to the discussion.

Please don't attack me personally, as you always do :cry:
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby zero » Mon Jan 10, 2011 12:11 pm

brentono wrote:
zero wrote:Its a pretty poor point you are making.


Its a pretty poor point you are making, siteing one situation, and trying
to build your whole debate/case/arguement around it.

All situations vary, all people react differently, one policy would help,
in any situation... commonsense should prevail in any situation,
if it was common.

I am not here to debate you, and have only refered to suggestions of
a common practice that has been used and taught historically in Australia.

It works for me, and seems commonsense. You may have your opinion and
do as you please, that is your right. And I will, also.
(That is- Until some concensus is reached, and enforcable laws,
are put in place, which is doubtful)
:mrgreen:


The law is in fact enforceable. Bicyclists are required to pass on the left, and pedestrians are required to not make hazards of themselves. That is both the law and common sense, and the lanes are marked on the ground for ease of understanding by all.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby brentono » Mon Jan 10, 2011 12:28 pm

zero wrote:The law is in fact enforceable. Bicyclists are required to pass on the left, and pedestrians are required to not make hazards of themselves. That is both the law and common sense, and the lanes are marked on the ground for ease of understanding by all.


So, if I walk on the right, as I am doing, and the cyclist passes on the left,
then that is a legal situation.
And in you case, if I am walking on the left, and the cyclist passes on the left,
they will run into your said wall... in your sited situation. Weird.

Many shared paths in W.A. have no lines, and I know of no pedestrian hazard law,
and who would be the enforcer of your said law.
Sounds far fetched, to me here, and each state has their own practices.
So who really knows.
Just to repeat, "Until some concensus is reached, and enforcable laws,
are put in place, which is doubtful" and the law ENFORCED is the other key word. :!:
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby zero » Mon Jan 10, 2011 12:29 pm

BigPete wrote:
zero wrote:All of the shared paths I ride on, have a road on one side, and a wall/fence/bridge abutment on the other, and the only place you can jump is onto the road, or into the potential path of another cyclist.



Not all shared paths are like this.
Haven’t you have just supported the view that it is safer to walk facing traffic? Even if there were no place to jump, you have a chance of yelling or squeezing up to the fence. You don't have that option if you travel with the traffic! If you did jump to the middle of the pathway you are still reducing the chance of being hit from 100% to a smaller amount. The chance of another cyclist coming the other way at he same time and actually hitting you is less than the 100% collision that was going to occur in the first place.
Now if you were walking with the traffic you would have been hit anyway.



Have a look at the other side. One side is the fence, the other side is the road. As soon as you the pedestrian turns around and goes the other way - then everything is flipped over. You guys are terribly unidirectional. The safest place for the pedestrian to be is claiming the lane in their direction of travel. The danger is not 1 bicycle / 1 pedestrian, it is 2 bicycles 2 directions and 1 pedestrian - and you want to deal with that by having the 2 parties that don't have to give way (pedestrian and oncoming bicycle) to not be attempting to give way, and the party that is required to give way - the rear approaching cyclist to give way. All of that happens naturally when the pedestrian claims their lane.

I use that area because its busy - and 2 bicycles, one pedestrian scenario crops up regularly.

Another point of view others have made is about pedestrians facing traffic are ‘often inconsistent and all over the place’. That occurs in either situation but granted, it may happen more when they face you but that could be due to the fact they know they should be (according to the current requirements) walking on the other side.

Also others have pointed out that a pedestrian being hit by a cyclist head on as opposed to from behind may result in higher injuries. This may well be the case but that was not what my original post was about. My post is about what is safer.



Its not safer - and its patently obviously not safer - because you keep blocking people that are likely to believe they have a right of way (even though thats not a legal construct), and not blocking people that have an obligation to give way - making them believe its clear to pass.

I have been riding/commuting for 19 years. In that time I have hit 2 pedestrians, 1 cyclist and run over 1 dog. Both pedestrians were hit from behind. One was when a group of 4 decided to change from walking 2 abreast to 4 abreast. No amount of yelling stopped them until it was too late. Perhaps too much other noise around them to hear me. No, I did not use the bell as I had 2 hands on the brakes. The other hit from behind was when a walker decided to point something out (to his right) to his mate. I hit his arm. Both these may not have occurred had they been facing me.
As for the dog, it appeared to be okay to both myself and its owner.

I am not suggesting for one moment that facing traffic when walking will stop accidents but IMO it is safer.


You are on a shared path - you flip sides and you don't change the clearances. If you walk on the other side, then the arm scenario still occurs. Its not the road, you don't gain 4m clearance between you and the cyclist coming from behind - all you do is preserve the same clearances, but change the sides.

I never emergency brake for them either - I slow down in advance. Happy to be prepared to match speed with a pedestrian when behind them to make it a safe pass. This is also a legal requirement in NSW for shared path usage - and it results in me never hitting them. When you pass multiples from behind, its common for the multiples to all change positions as they all attempt to let you through at once - so there really isn't much choice but be prepared to match speed to wait for them to work it out.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby zero » Mon Jan 10, 2011 12:52 pm

I think its 209 in WA and it specifically refers to paths.

The situation that commonly occurs with walkers that walk on the wrong side of the path, is that they step across when faced with oncoming bicycles, and yes that would be considered obstructing.
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby il padrone » Mon Jan 10, 2011 12:57 pm

BigPete wrote:I have been riding/commuting for 19 years. In that time I have hit 2 pedestrians, 1 cyclist and run over 1 dog. Both pedestrians were hit from behind.

I've been cycle-commuting for 34 years. In that time I've hit no pedestrians, no cyclists and no dogs.

You'd better shape up mate :twisted:
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Re: keep left on shared paths

Postby brentono » Mon Jan 10, 2011 1:12 pm

http://www.austroads.com.au/documents/Ped-cyclist_conflict_minimisation_on_shared_paths.pdf

Straight out of a recent publication, covering all of this, most of you will be enlightened.
(sorry for the tone, as many here perceive, but they may not be correct)
DYOR- Here's the reality. :wink:
Straight from the text...
It should also be noted that the Australian Road Rules (National Road Transport Commission 1999)
have abandoned the requirement for pedestrians to keep left on shared paths.


Which leads to the point made in the table (below), which I point out... due to this point

Key conflict issues between pedestrians and cyclists on shared paths and footpaths (continuation)

Users not keeping left-

Pedestrian and cyclists not keeping left, even though they would do that if driving/riding on the road.
Complicated by removal of requirement for pedestrians to keep left on paths,
as advice to pedestrians walking on roads without footpaths is to face the oncoming traffic.
As the bicycle is a quiet vehicle, pedestrians (especially those with a hearing impairment, for example)
may feel more comfortable facing oncoming cyclists.


Hope this helps, the OP, you can see which seems to be safer
(walking on the right, facing oncoming cyclists)
:mrgreen:
Lone Rider- I rode on the long, dark road... before I danced under the lights.
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brentono
 
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