New cycling regulations to be drafted after public endorses changes

10 Jul 2015

Changes to cycling laws endorsing bike riding on footpaths and minimum overtaking distances will be drafted by the State Government following public consultation.

More than 70 per cent of those who responded during the consultation period endorsed both measures recommended by the Citizen’s Jury in January.

Almost 1600 submissions were received during the consultation period and more than 1100 supported the plan to allow cyclists of all ages to ride on footpaths.

Most were in favour of the measure because of the safety benefits, particularly for families and inexperienced riders.

Many also said riding on the footpath was sometimes considered a safer alternative to the road or that sometimes a footpath provides a more direct route.

But some submissions raised concerns about potential impacts on pedestrians, particularly the elderly.

The government is committed to taking those concerns into account in implementing the law change, particularly educating cyclists about safe speeds on footpaths and the need to alert people on approach by sounding a bell.

The footpath amendment will bring South Australia into line with other states such as Queensland, Tasmania, the ACT and Northern Territory.

About 73 percent of people who responded during public consultation supported creating enforced overtaking buffers for cyclists.

The rules require road users to allow at least a one metre gap on roads with speed limits of up to 60kmh, and 1.5 metres for anything above that speed.

The government will now begin drafting new regulations with the aim of introducing the changes later this year.

An education campaign will get underway before the changes take effect and the Motor Accident Commission will help explain the changes to motorists, cyclists and pedestrians.

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