Living Streets proposal to change Give Way rules

Living Streets Aotearoa has asked CAN to endorse this proposal to change Give Way rules.

Can I get your thoughts? Patrick

Further to this, I have a 4th-year student investigating this topic for her project later this year (have already mentioned this to Andy Smith). This will probably include some modelling and crash analysis. While we will probably focus on the pedestrian aspects, we will touch on linking in cycling too.

On 11/03/2014 8:36 p.m., Axel Wilke wrote:
> Hi Pat,
> Spent all day with Glen today; we were teaching some students today.

> Yes, good on Living Streets pushing this issue very hard. It's about time to get us into the first world. Admittedly, we had to get our basic give way rules changed first (March 2012) before we consider what we do next. As far as I'm concerned, there are two basic options for making further changes:
> · Do what Living Streets suggest, or
> · Change the give way rules so that cyclists crossing a side street are also included in the next lot of rule changes, i.e. bring us into line with European countries, where right of way is linked to a legal road (boundary to boundary), and not just the carriageway.

> No doubt there will be a great reluctance by many officials to include cyclists in this. In my view, to do both those changes in one go has several advantages:
> · Less confusing for motorists - they have only one more change to cope with,
> · If we change this for both pedestrians and cyclists, there is a better chance of the Transport Agency actually advertising the rule change (think back to the introduction of the Road User Rule, when all they promoted were changes to indicating at roundabout - all else local authorities were deemed to be responsible for)
> · Our current give way rules prevent councils from building pathways alongside roads, as existing cyclists (often only those are the ones who are vocal and make their opinion known) would see a decreasing level of service, and who would want that? But we full well know that the only way to significantly boost cycling is to separate cyclists from traffic, so the sooner we change rules that stop us from building the right infrastructure, the better.
> I hope this is helpful.
> Regards,
> Axel Wilke

>I agree with the change and cyclists crossing a side road on a separated path should also have the right of way... It would encourage cyclists to use those paths more.

Cheers, Lyneke

it's a general matter of precedence and trying to make them more consistent. At the moment if cycles are on the main carriageway then they already have the precedence the walkers are looking for, and and if they're on a conventional footpath they are breaking the law. since we are calling for more separated facilities, then we're going to end up with more situations where cycles are on a path positioned in the same place as a footpath, parallel to the formed road, and crossing side roads. at the moment the most common handling of that would be to give precedence to users of the formed central carriageways, which means the separated path would have many more places where giving way to side roads is required. So we do have an interest in what happens here, and perhaps we should be saying we want the effect on cycles and separated paths to be considered in possible law changes.

Regards, Stephen W

I suppose Living Streets left out cyclists because cycling on the footpath is illegal and they expect cyclists to be in the carriageway? In Dunedin we have a shared path along the harbourside that becomes essentially a footpath closer to the city centre. This footpath is designated as a shared path so cyclists can use it, but the way they deal with intersections (two in particular) is to put a sign on either side of the intersection telling you that the path for cyclists ends and begins again on the other side of the intersection. Needless to say we've had some incidents at these notorious intersections (they are also badly designed and encourage high-speed exits from the side street onto the main street). This will also become a major problem for us as Dunedin's separated lanes on SH1 progress.

Cyclists definitely need to be included. And what about skateboards and mobility scooters? Maybe the language of their petition should be something like "all legal non-vehicular traffic." Or even just "all non-vehicular traffic" regardless of whether it is legal traffic or not - a death penalty far exceeds the severity of the infraction of someone illegally ambling along the footpath on a bicycle .

With only 36 signatures thus far, is it too late to ask Living Streets to change the language to something more all-encompassing? Alternatives: push a parallel campaign to highlight the problem for cyclists or wait until their petition gains traction and looks like it might result in a rule change and then campaign on the details of the rule change.

Cheers, Robert T

Sounds like a good change that we should support. It would be useful to have some statistics and research on the effects in other countries, as Glen might be considering, to have clear evidence for the Ministry policy analysts.. I do not recall this rule being applied in the US, despite the claim that it is applied there - maybe it is a recent change, but Texas is kind of 3rd world.

One of the two most risky places I ride is the shared path in Thorndon where vehicles cross the path without looking for cyclists. This rule change might help change that mind set.

Tom H

How will it effect cyclists? There are two pictures in the article on
the living streets website. If the pedestrian is replaced by a cyclist
in the first one the cyclist is biking counterflow so unlikely to be
recognised in the road code. In the second picture the cyclist would
already have right of way I think. I am not sure if there is no marked
cycle lane but if there is the car is moving through it so has to give
I would rather we concentrated on giving cyclists separate signals
especially on T intersections. If there are adequate cycle lanes,
cyclists should be able to move through the top of the T at all times
except for the pedestrians across the through road phase.

Regards, Don.

Patrick. Disagree with petition. We (my wife is a walker like me) feel that the pedestrian and cyclist should only have the right of way where the route is marked e.g. traffic signals during pedestrian/bike phase, at zebra, or on marked pathway. If this change goes ahead we will see pedestrians simply walking off the kerb anywhere in front of cars. And motorists would have to pause in mid-turn in a dangerous situation where completion of the turning movement is desirable.

Lynn Sleath
Kapiti Cycling Inc.
12 March 2014









Groups audience: 
- Private group -