The reason children do not walk and ride to school is that the cars scare them away. Primary school children do not have the cognitive ability to judge the speed and distance of cars. The selfishness of drivers and disregard for other children’s safety makes this problem far worse. What can be done?
Back to bike path maintenance. Over the last 20 years, path maintenance has been a weak spot in the ACT. TCCS is responsible for “presentation” which includes lawn mowing and maintenance of public space. The bike paths struggle to get the most basic attention. Here are recent photos from 2022.
Speeding has become the norm in Canberra. “In a 60 km/h speed limit area, the risk of involvement in a casualty crash doubles with each 5 km/h increase in travelling speed above 60 km/h.” 5 km/h above the speed limit is the equivalent of the blood alcohol concentration of 0.05. We have kicked the drink driving habit, can we now kick the speeding habit? A 25-year-old Australian study warns of the dangers of speeding.
Recent studies demonstrate that bad ACT road design is a major factor in why our roads poorly serve pedestrians and cyclists. Kambah is a good example. The roads need to be fixed quickly with affordable solutions. If you would like your children to be able to walk around the suburb safely, Local Area Traffic Management is worth knowing about.
Children do not walk to school because cars make it unsafe to do so. To improve road safety for children around schools, we require traffic calming measures, on all sides, and the implementation of safe zones, where children can move without crossing roads and getting close to motor vehicles. Any approach will require some government expenditure and urban renewal. TCCS have named the process Local Area Traffic Management (LATM). The Lyneham Primary School Petition is a typical attempt to improve safety around the school. At the moment, the chances of any improvement, however, are low. 😦
The vast majority think of themselves as better than average drivers. We judge ourselves by our intent and not the outcome. Others judge us by the outcome but rarely by our intent. We are very good at rationalising our irrational behaviour, particularly to protect our ego. The sales boom of SUVs and trucks (utes) is ongoing – even during a climate change emergency. SUVs and trucks are more likely to cause the deaths of pedestrians and cyclists – an inconvenient truth that many refuse to accept.
VicRoads Cycle Notes 21 (August 2013) has advice on the widths of off-road shared use paths. It is not the most recent. Austroads Guide to Road Design Part 6A: Paths for Walking and Cycling (AGRD06A) and the Netherlands CROW publication are more recent. Still, it is worth noting that even back in 2013 VicRoads were aware of what we in Canberra need and still do not have.
Canberra.bikes` submission for the Standing Committee on Planning, Transport and City Services. Making Canberra a city where we can cycle safely and easily, at any time, from 8-80 years. Here is the table of contents with links to the text.
The issues with the Standing Committee on Planning, Transport and City Services approach to the Road Transport (Safety and Traffic Management) Amendment Bill 2021 (No 2).
Active travel faces many barriers. One is our perceptions of a safety, or fear. As a society, we seem to be getting more fearful. Our perceptions of safety are important. Psychology and neuroscience has come a long way to explaining our nature. The availability cascade is a contributing factor in our perception of risk.