Briefing notes arising from King/Duynhoven meeting
BackgroundThe Ministry of Transport (MOT) undertook to provide meeting notes to the Cycling Advocates' Network (CAN) and Living Streets Aotearoa (LSA) on CAN/Bike NZ's meeting with Minister King and Minister Duynhoven on 10 September 2008.
Notes on Meeting with Cycling Advocates' NetworkOn 10 September 2008 the Minister King and Minister Duynhoven met with representatives from the CAN and Bike NZ. At that meeting the MOT provided advice on three issues:
- Information regarding the need to increase the 'visibility' of cyclists in the Road Code and in driver instruction and licence testing.
- Information from New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) regarding what education / advertising plans it has to promote cycle safety and the ‘Share the Road' programme.
- Information about rule changes to give cyclists on off-road cycle paths priority over side roads and changing the burden of proof in crashes involving cyclists and motor vehicles.
Increasing the visibility of cyclists in driver licence testing
- NZTA is currently revamping the structure of driver licence theory test questions. NZTA will include cyclists in more of the question graphics to create a more realistic view of actual road usage and risk. The new theory test questions will be a combination of legal requirements and "best safe practice".
- The Road Codes are being revamped for January 2009. NZTA have invited a technical expert from CAN/Bike NZ to review the cycling questions in the Road Codes. MOT/NZTA officials will contact CAN/Bike NZ to assist with organising this.
- During the practical driving test, the testing officer can fail a test if the driver does not comply with any traffic law, drives recklessly or dangerously, or causes a crash. Failure to give way to cyclists would result in a failed test on these grounds. In practice, the response by the testing officer - pass, fail or suspending a test - would be based on the specific situation and behaviour exhibited. Any interaction with a cyclist is dependent on a cyclist being present during the driving test.
Further information regarding the ‘Share the Road' campaign
- NZTA has published the local Share the Road resources. They have produced two online and printed guides. These guidelines provide advice and examples to help councils to successfully manage a Share the Road campaign. Local councils are able to implement a local Share the Road campaign with 75 percent funding support from NZTA.
- NZTA is completing research (due early 2009) into international promotions that encourage the use of walking and cycling for transport. NZTA discussed these matters with CAN/Bike NZ at their last relationship management meeting. MOT will also continue to discuss this initiative (along with the other Getting There initiatives) with NZTA.
Rule changes to give cyclists priority and changing the burden of proof
- These issues were investigated by the Land Transport Safety Authority (now New Zealand Transport Agency) in a review of Legal Issues for Vulnerable Road Users. The review recommended that consideration be given to changing a number of existing road user rules that impact on pedestrians and cyclists. Most notable among them was changing the give-way rules to require traffic turning right to give way to traffic turning left into the same road. This change would significantly improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists at intersections and would create an environment where other changes could be safely implemented. Another proposal was to require turning traffic to give way to pedestrians that are crossing the road the motor vehicle is entering. In both these situations New Zealand differs from many other countries.
- Although the decision was taken by transport officials not to progress these suggestions, there are proposed amendments to road user rules currently out for consultation which relate to walking and cycling. These changes apply to pedestrian crossings, special vehicle lanes (such as cycle and bus lanes) and roundabouts (particularly multi-lane roundabouts).
- These issues will also be considered as part of the policy development for the Road Safety to 2020 Strategy. CAN/ BikeNZ will have the opportunity to provide input through this process.