Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

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Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby Aushiker » Fri Nov 11, 2011 12:30 pm

Hi

THE death of a promising musician and student in a cycling accident was preventable and action was needed to ensure it was never repeated, a coroner has found.

Swapping bike lanes to the left-hand side of parked cars in Melbourne's busiest streets was among the recommendations handed down after the inquest into Victoria's first recorded "dooring" death yesterday...

"It has highlighted a very significant public safety hazard, particularly in high-risk areas where car dooring is responsible for many injuries to cyclists," coroner Heather Spooner said.


Source: Herald Sun

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by BNA » Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:14 pm

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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby toholio » Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:14 pm

Aushiker wrote:Herald Sun


There's been quite a bit of talk about this over on the BV forums.

There's now three comments on the Hun's article two of which say Copenhagen style bike lanes are more dangerous. Hilariously, one of those also says we should follow Europe's lead. :roll:

EDIT: And yes, I did reply to those comments as politely as I could. More recent comments have been published so I'm guessing an editor has rejected them for some reason.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby Oxford » Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:38 pm

left handed bike lanes where you cannot avoid dooring at all. at least on the right hand side you can ride in the lane away from the door zone. I think the coroner needs to really think this through before commenting again.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby toholio » Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:49 pm

Oxford wrote:left handed bike lanes where you cannot avoid dooring at all. at least on the right hand side you can ride in the lane away from the door zone. I think the coroner needs to really think this through before commenting again.


The kerb between the parked cars and the bicycle lane can be made wide enough that the door never reaches the cycle lane in most cases.

Hardly any cars have passengers. It's almost always just the driver.

This style of bicycle lane has proven itself effective over a very long period of time in many countries. The article makes it sound as though the coroner thought it up herself.
Last edited by toholio on Fri Nov 11, 2011 2:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby ausrandoman » Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:55 pm

I wonder if Clause 269(3) Road Safety Road Rules 2009 was mentioned.

(3) A person must not cause a hazard to any person or vehicle by opening a door of a vehicle, leaving a door of a vehicle open, or getting off, or out of, a vehicle.
Penalty: 3 penalty units.


What is the law relating to manslaughter? Is it relevant here? I have no idea but I hope someone here knows.

I see two possible outcomes if opening a car door resulted in death and the penalty was gaol rather than 3 penalty units.
1. Fewer door opening accidents
2. The Herald Sun would start a vociferous campaign to have the law repealed.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby ausrandoman » Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:57 pm

I used to work in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Melbourne University. A lot of the lecturers were car enthusiasts. One of them was a bike hater. One day the staff room conversation turned to the fact that bikes are faster than cars in inner-city rush-hour traffic. The lecturer commented that drivers could stop cyclists from getting past by knocking them off their bike with the car door, followed by smidsy.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby toholio » Fri Nov 11, 2011 2:01 pm

ausrandoman wrote:I wonder if Clause 269(3) Road Safety Road Rules 2009 was mentioned.

...

What is the law relating to manslaughter? Is it relevant here? I have no idea but I hope someone here knows.


It's a moot point because...

A driver responsible for the 'dooring' death of a bike rider was not charged by police after senior officers blocked any prosecution.


... the police have no intention to pursue the matter. They didn't even get a statement from the driver until three months after the accident.

More info: http://www.bv.com.au/general/bikes-and-riding/10218/
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby Aushiker » Fri Nov 11, 2011 2:07 pm

toholio wrote:The article makes it sound as though the coroner thought it up himself.

* herself :wink:

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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby toholio » Fri Nov 11, 2011 2:10 pm

Aushiker wrote:
toholio wrote:The article makes it sound as though the coroner thought it up himself.

* herself :wink:

Andrew


Heather can be a man's name, can't it?

Whoops. :oops:
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby The 2nd Womble » Fri Nov 11, 2011 3:48 pm

toholio wrote:
Aushiker wrote:Herald Sun


There's been quite a bit of talk about this over on the BV forums.

There's now three comments on the Hun's article two of which say Copenhagen style bike lanes are more dangerous. Hilariously, one of those also says we should follow Europe's lead. :roll:

EDIT: And yes, I did reply to those comments as politely as I could. More recent comments have been published so I'm guessing an editor has rejected them for some reason.

I'm sure BV is loving it's members bashing the bike lanes it expects everyone to use. And to think that the Victorian Government - or more precicely Vic Roads - threw all that tax revenue at the problem and Bicycle Gimp didn't deliver. Shocking! :?
A Victorian colleague was actually told by a senior beauraucrat 2 weeks ago that The Vic Govt actually does not know how to deal with BV and Vic Roads. YOUR OEN GOVERNMENT IS BEING DICTATED TO BY BIKE HATERS!



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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby rustychisel » Fri Nov 11, 2011 5:18 pm

Very difficult, and ultimately it highlights the issues with segregation, namely that it usually leaves someone not very happy. Segregated bike lanes, I'm afraid, often do exactly that, since they don't address the root issue. Cars and trucks are lethal tonnage which do significant damage when driven - or in this instance - parked poorly. The attitude and competence of the operator is, as usual, paramount. Which in turn leads to the unreasoned expectation amongst other vehicle operators that all cyclist will use a bike lane - and only a bike lane - at all times, a distinctly dangerous state of mind.

In Adelaide we had a Copenhagen styled bike lane on Sturt Street... the traders hated it, many cyclists hated it, car drivers looking for parking hated it, etc etc. My partner thought it was great, but after a couple of years of fierce debate it was taken up. There are 2 major issues with the model... if you're travelling more than 12 ~ 15kmh it's massively dangerous because of restrictions (in space) and the fact that a cyclist is often concealed behind infrastructure and parked vehicles, leading to the second point... every cross walk, every intersection, driveway etc is a potential deathtrap. If you ride at greater speeds than an amble these lanes are no good whatsoever. [not to mention the point previous about expectations that all cyclists will use a bikelane in abject gratitude, even if it's totally unsafe and unworthy].
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby zero » Fri Nov 11, 2011 6:11 pm

rustychisel wrote:Very difficult, and ultimately it highlights the issues with segregation, namely that it usually leaves someone not very happy. Segregated bike lanes, I'm afraid, often do exactly that, since they don't address the root issue. Cars and trucks are lethal tonnage which do significant damage when driven - or in this instance - parked poorly. The attitude and competence of the operator is, as usual, paramount. Which in turn leads to the unreasoned expectation amongst other vehicle operators that all cyclist will use a bike lane - and only a bike lane - at all times, a distinctly dangerous state of mind.

In Adelaide we had a Copenhagen styled bike lane on Sturt Street... the traders hated it, many cyclists hated it, car drivers looking for parking hated it, etc etc. My partner thought it was great, but after a couple of years of fierce debate it was taken up. There are 2 major issues with the model... if you're travelling more than 12 ~ 15kmh it's massively dangerous because of restrictions (in space) and the fact that a cyclist is often concealed behind infrastructure and parked vehicles, leading to the second point... every cross walk, every intersection, driveway etc is a potential deathtrap. If you ride at greater speeds than an amble these lanes are no good whatsoever. [not to mention the point previous about expectations that all cyclists will use a bikelane in abject gratitude, even if it's totally unsafe and unworthy].


Its because they aren't actually copenhagen lanes. In copenhagen lanes are 1 way, and they remove the parking from the streets with bicycle flows, because for some reason they were blessed with enough common sense to figure out that parked cars are anathema to a usable transport system. So you can usually see the cyclist from the car, you can usually see the car from the cycle, and the pedestrians don't have to appear on the cyclelane from behind parked cars.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby il padrone » Fri Nov 11, 2011 6:58 pm

zero wrote:Its because they aren't actually copenhagen lanes. In copenhagen lanes are 1 way, and they remove the parking from the streets with bicycle flows, because for some reason they were blessed with enough common sense to figure out that parked cars are anathema to a usable transport system. So you can usually see the cyclist from the car, you can usually see the car from the cycle, and the pedestrians don't have to appear on the cyclelane from behind parked cars.

Exactly. It is a very different beast to our Swanston Street lanes. Then there are the minor points of how you manouver (safely) to and from such a bike lane mid-block to do right turns or U-turns; how you prevent/minimise the hazards of bogan-droppings (aka broken beer bottles); who sweeps up said bogan-droppings, leaf litter, etc; and even how you do such sweeping in a very narrow bike lane?

The Aussie version of Copenhagen-lanes is a debacle for many cyclists :x . Please don't give us any more of them.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby Mulger bill » Fri Nov 11, 2011 8:31 pm

Just remember that magic word "Impracticable" and take a lane.

RIP young feller. :(
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby The 2nd Womble » Fri Nov 11, 2011 8:43 pm

Mulger bill wrote:Just remember that magic word "Impracticable" and take a lane.

RIP young feller. :(

+1. Take the lane, and get us some law changes with actual enforcement to re-enforce the point.
Fore mentioned colleague told me that Vic Roads was selling 'check for cyclists' decals similar to 'objects are closer than they appear' as found on car wing mirrors. How many of you even knew? They never promoted them.
They held thousands of the things and ended up chucking them due to lack of interest. That happens when you tuck them away in the darkest recesses of a Vic Roads office so nobody knows they exist.
I suggest Vic cyclists contact Vic Roads and ask for the decals. If demand is high enough who knows eh? Personally I think all cars should have one by law. If you see it every time you check your mirrors it has to have some impact when it comes time for you to haul your lazy arse out from behind the wheel.


Provided some people actually use their mirrors at all.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby KenGS » Fri Nov 11, 2011 8:54 pm

The 2nd Womble wrote:
Mulger bill wrote:Just remember that magic word "Impracticable" and take a lane.

RIP young feller. :(

+1. Take the lane, and get us some law changes with actual enforcement to re-enforce the point.
Fore mentioned colleague told me that Vic Roads was selling 'check for cyclists' decals similar to 'objects are closer than they appear' as found on car wing mirrors. How many of you even knew? They never promoted them.
They held thousands of the things and ended up chucking them due to lack of interest. That happens when you tuck them away in the darkest recesses of a Vic Roads office so nobody knows they exist.
I suggest Vic cyclists contact Vic Roads and ask for the decals. If demand is high enough who knows eh? Personally I think all cars should have one by law. If you see it every time you check your mirrors it has to have some impact when it comes time for you to haul your lazy arse out from behind the wheel.


Provided some people actually use their mirrors at all.

Should place them over the sights they have in their windscreen for lining up on cyclists or on the front of the phone
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby Mulger bill » Fri Nov 11, 2011 9:35 pm

:lol:

Unfortunately, too many people look AT their mirrors, not IN them :roll:

Never knew about them stickers Womble, gonna suss me local Vicroads Mondy arvo, get a handful and apply at random. :twisted:

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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby DavidS » Sun Nov 13, 2011 12:21 am

il padrone wrote:
zero wrote:Its because they aren't actually copenhagen lanes. In copenhagen lanes are 1 way, and they remove the parking from the streets with bicycle flows, because for some reason they were blessed with enough common sense to figure out that parked cars are anathema to a usable transport system. So you can usually see the cyclist from the car, you can usually see the car from the cycle, and the pedestrians don't have to appear on the cyclelane from behind parked cars.

Exactly. It is a very different beast to our Swanston Street lanes. Then there are the minor points of how you manouver (safely) to and from such a bike lane mid-block to do right turns or U-turns; how you prevent/minimise the hazards of bogan-droppings (aka broken beer bottles); who sweeps up said bogan-droppings, leaf litter, etc; and even how you do such sweeping in a very narrow bike lane?

The Aussie version of Copenhagen-lanes is a debacle for many cyclists :x . Please don't give us any more of them.


I used to ride up the top of Swanston St every day and those lanes are terrible. Instead of having to look out for obstacles at intersections I had to look at every driveway, assume I would be cut off at intersections, have pedestrians walk in front of me, pedestrians walk along the bike lane, pedestrians stand around in the bike lane etc etc etc. They should be ripped up, stupid idea. If BV support these maybe we could have the president of BV ride up and down these lanes for a day or 2 and see how long before s/he gets run over.

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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby Xplora » Sun Nov 13, 2011 7:53 am

Doesn't all of this come down to driver expectations?

I really feel that a lot more proper empirical research needs to be done about the true speed of driving. Corners, reasonable trips over a certain distance at certain times, parking times, to demonstrate that a car trip is more than just driving at 50-60kmh. I'm actually really surprised every time I have an incident, and after paying attention to certain cars, that they really aren't going any faster than I am. The only time they beat me is extended uphill sections.

If a driver understands that their overall speed in peak hour is likely to be only 30kmh, a cyclist doing 25kmh isn't holding them up at all. If a driver truly appreciates the fact that the road isn't there for them alone, then their attitude will be far less aggressive when the lane is claimed.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby human909 » Sun Nov 13, 2011 8:26 am

Xplora wrote:Doesn't all of this come down to driver expectations?

I really feel that a lot more proper empirical research needs to be done about the true speed of driving. Corners, reasonable trips over a certain distance at certain times, parking times, to demonstrate that a car trip is more than just driving at 50-60kmh. I'm actually really surprised every time I have an incident, and after paying attention to certain cars, that they really aren't going any faster than I am. The only time they beat me is extended uphill sections.

If a driver understands that their overall speed in peak hour is likely to be only 30kmh, a cyclist doing 25kmh isn't holding them up at all. If a driver truly appreciates the fact that the road isn't there for them alone, then their attitude will be far less aggressive when the lane is claimed.


If a motorist can average 30kph in peak hour then they're doing pretty well!
http://www.caradvice.com.au/130972/aust ... -revealed/


That said I'm extremely lucky on my current car commute, I average 60kph and I live 10km from the city! I'm travelling against the peak hour traffic. I'm not committed enough to wake up at 5:00 to get to work by 7:00 if I was cycling.
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Re: Coroner urges radical rethink of bike lanes to save ...

Postby jules21 » Mon Nov 14, 2011 2:50 pm

ausrandoman wrote:I used to work in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Melbourne University. A lot of the lecturers were car enthusiasts. One of them was a bike hater. One day the staff room conversation turned to the fact that bikes are faster than cars in inner-city rush-hour traffic. The lecturer commented that drivers could stop cyclists from getting past by knocking them off their bike with the car door, followed by smidsy.

having dealt with mech. eng. lecturers during my degree, if he thought to engage with the cyclist with a SMIDSY, then he must have been the socially advanced one.
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