Bike SA CEO Christian Haag looks at the new road road rules now that the three month grace period has come to a conclusion.
On October 25 2015, the new cycling road laws came into effect, requiring drivers to give a minimum of one metre when passing a cyclist where the speed limit is 60km/h or less or 1.5 metres where the speed limit is over 60km/h.
The SAPOL announced a three month ‘education’ period where any motorists found not to be abiding by the law would receive a caution and not be subject to the increased penalties of $287 fine + $60 victims of crime levy, and 2 demerit points. The three month grace period has now closed.
During the education ‘phase’ police issued 10 cautions to motorist for failing to keep a safe lateral distance when passing a cyclist – five of those were issued to drivers for being less than 1m from a cyclist (in 60km/h zones) and five were for being less than 1.5m from a cyclist (in over 60 km/h zones).
In the same three month period police received 56 complaints via the Traffic Watch system reporting motorists for failing to keep a safe lateral distance.
There is still some uncertainty within the community about these changes (including the ability for all cyclists to ride on the footpath) and we would encourage you to share this link – http://mylicence.sa.gov.au/road-rules/newcyclinglaws – with your family and friends.
Last November, Bike SA surveyed our members and friends at the conclusion of the first week of these new rules coming into effect. We had a great response with over 1,300 respondents sharing their experiences. We committed to undertake the same survey at the three, six and twelve month mark, to enable us to get a sense of how motorist and cyclist behaviours are working together.
Now that we are three months into the new regime, we encourage you to take part in the second survey. Your feedback is invaluable to us and greatly assists our advocacy work to state and local governments.
Take part in the survey here.