News: August 2008

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Aug

Finalists in the second annual Cycling Advocates Network (CAN) Cycle-Friendly Awards have just been announced. The thirteen nominations include bike parking facilities, a promotional video, staff "bicycle user groups" (BUGs), and traffic equipment hire for cycling events. Devised by CAN, the national organisation promoting everyday cycling, the Cycle Friendly Awards are designed to acknowledge and celebrate some of the most notable achievements in the country that are helping to promote cycling and to create a cycle-friendly environment. The Awards are supported by sport and recreation agency SPARC. Nominations were called for in four categories: best cycle facility project, best cycling promotion, cycle-friendly commitment by a business and cycle-friendly commitment by a public organisation. Over twenty nominations were received this year. CAN chairperson Robert Ibell was pleased with...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

New Zealand's first awards for achievement in promoting cycling have been launched. National cycling organisation the Cycling Advocates Network (CAN) today announced the creation of the CAN Cycle-Friendly Awards. The awards aim to recognise individuals or organisations who have helped to create a bicycle-friendly environment at a national or local level. CAN is calling for nominations for awards in four categories: -best cycle facility project -best cycling promotion -cycle-friendly commitment by a business -cycle-friendly commitment by a public organisation CAN chairperson Jane Dawson said "The bicycle is a key part of the solution to the environmental, economic, social and health problems our current transport system has created. With the Cycle-Friendly Awards, CAN is looking to acknowledge and celebrate some of the initiatives that have helped to promote cycling for transport or...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

With the price of oil hitting record highs cycling is becoming even more attractive as a way to get around. National cycling organisation Cycling Advocates' Network (CAN) says that as driving becomes more expensive, New Zealanders of all ages are rediscovering their love for the humble push-bike. "The days of cheap oil are over. As the price goes up cycling becomes more and more attractive." said CAN spokesperson Patrick Morgan. After decades of decline, cycling to work is on the increase in some parts of New Zealand. "We're noticing new recreational cycling events springing up everywhere now. And attendance at fun rides like Round Taupo is at an all time high." said Mr Morgan. "Our members are noticing lots more cyclists out and about". "Not having to pay for petrol is only one of the benefits of cycling. It's also non-polluting, healthy, and best of all, it's loads of fun." said Mr...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

Cyclists have welcomed some aspects of the Government's Road Safety Policy Statement released today but called for stronger action to make New Zealand's roads safer. Cycling Advocates' Network (CAN) chairperson Robert Ibell said "We're pleased to see a strong focus on education, including changes to driver training, and a continued emphasis on speed reduction. However, the Government has backed away from important safety measures like banning cellphone use while driving, lowering the blood alcohol limit, and reducing motor vehicle numbers." "Cyclists are particularly vulnerable when drivers are distracted by their cellphones. Every cyclist has stories of 'near misses' with cars or trucks, and for some people those incidents are enough to put them off cycling." said Mr Ibell. "There is clear evidence that using a cellphone while driving is the equivalent of driving while drunk, and we...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

All road users should actively promote cycling because everyone benefits. That's the key message to come out of the fifth New Zealand Cycling Conference. Over 170 delegates attended the two-day conference held in Hutt City on October 14 and 15. The unique conference brings together cycling advocates, local and central government representatives, consultants, and analysts, to identify ways to get more people cycling more often. Keynote speaker, Troels Andersen from Denmark, presented evidence from European cities showing the strong relationship between high national obesity and low cycling rates. This was reinforced by public health economists Des O'Dea and environmental economist Dr Ralph Chapman, who also noted the strong connection between good urban design form, more walking and cycling, and reduced obesity. They showed how a dollar invested in promoting physical activity will save...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

Finalists in the SPARC Cycle-Friendly Awards 2006 have been announced today. The thirty-one nominations include a nationwide mayoral challenge event, a shared cycle/pedestrian path in Palmerston North, a workplace mileage policy that includes walking and cycling, a staff fitness programme in Mt Maunganui, and free adult cycle skills courses in Tasman and Nelson. Now in their fourth year, the Cycle-Friendly Awards are designed to acknowledge and celebrate some of the most notable achievements in the country that are helping to promote cycling and to create a cycle-friendly environment. The Awards were devised by the Cycling Advocates’ Network (CAN), the national organisation promoting everyday cycling, and are sponsored by sport and recreation agency Sport and Recreation New Zealand (SPARC), Ministry of Transport, Roger Boulter Consulting, Avanti and Bike Wise. Nominations were called...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

The four winners of the national SPARC Cycle-Friendly Awards 2006 were announced today at a ceremony at Parliament. Judged by an independent panel, the winners in each of the categories are: Avanti Award for Best Cycle Facility Project: Little River Rail Trail, Christchurch (Little River Trail Trust)BikeWise Award for Best Cycling Promotion: Bike Wise Mayoral Challenge (Bike Wise, HSC)MoT/Land Transport NZ 'Getting There' Award for Cycle-friendly Commitment by Business: Workplace cycle facilities (Tait Electronics, Christchurch)Roger Boulter Consulting Award for Cycle-friendly Commitment by Public Organisation: Ilam campus cycle-friendly initiatives (University of Canterbury) Wellington MP Charles Chauvel presented each finalist with a uniquely designed "bicycle-bell" trophy and a certificate. Mr Chauvel said, "It...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

National cycling lobby group Cycling Advocates' Network (CAN) strongly supports the call of Transport Safety Minister Harry Duynhoven for a review of the driving age. CAN chairperson Robert Ibell says: "All the carnage around young drivers in high performance cars is only one of the reasons we need to change the driving culture in New Zealand. The justifcation given for NZ having one of the youngest driving age in the world, that our rural teenagers would be stranded with an older driving age, doesn't stack up." According to the Ministry of the Environment, New Zealand has one of the more urbanised population in the world, "We have a generation of kids growing up striving for the status of driving to school in their final years of secondary education. Yet we now have a school zoning system which means that most kids live within easy walking or cycling distance of school. If parents...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

Everyday cycling is under threat of extinction. That's the warning from New Zealand cycling advocates. “The 2006 Census shows a further decrease in the numbers of people cycling to work, to nearly 2% of commuters,” says Cycling Advocates’ Network (CAN) chair Robert Ibell. "Kiwis should have the choice of biking to work," says Mr. Ibell. "But right now that choice doesn't exist for many people because they think our roads are too unsafe." “People who cycle to work help reduce pollution and congestion. They also improve their own health, which means fewer days off work, lower costs to the health system, and better quality of life in the long run. They also encourage others. But many cyclists are afraid to cycle to work,” says Ibell. “A recent study shows that congestion costs the country about $1 billion a year, and pollution costs about the same again. That’s about $2,000 for every...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

Finalists in the third annual CAN Cycle-Friendly Awards have just been announced. The twenty-eight nominations include a cycle crash reporting hotline, a community bike scheme, a training course for transport professionals in cycle planning and design, and cycle paths in Nelson, Hamilton and Napier. Devised by the Cycling Advocates' Network, the national organisation promoting everyday cycling, and supported by sport and recreation agency Sport and Recreation New Zealand (SPARC), the Cycle Friendly Awards are designed to acknowledge and celebrate some of the most notable achievements in the country that are helping to promote cycling and to create a cycle-friendly environment. Nominations were called for in four categories: best cycle facility project, best cycling promotion, cycle-friendly commitment by a business and cycle-friendly commitment by a public organisation. Nearly thirty...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
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Aug

Recent media headlines suggest one in three cyclists had accidents last year. This is misleading, as about 1 in one thousand cyclists is seriously injured or killed per year, and cycling’s overall safety is comparable to other modes of transport.Cycling Advocates’ Network spokesperson Stephen McKernon says “Headlines about research on cycling accidents are entirely misleading and play on people's fears. The research shows cycling is safer when brightly-coloured safety clothing is used, and is based only on cyclists who trained for the Wattyl Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge. The research should not be taken out of context, and it is wrong to say that a third of cyclists have had accidents, based only on the injuries of a small group training for a race."Mr Mckernon adds, “Ministry of Transport injury data and SPARC physical activity data show only 1 in one thousand cyclists is seriously...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

Cycling Advocates’ Network (CAN) announces the launch of a new guide helping cyclists with every day cycling. The guide recognises that cycling is enjoyable, makes a difference, and needs to be done responsibly. The launch supports the National Go By Bike Day on Wednesday 28 February 2007. ‘Cyclists need to be made more aware of the difference they are making’ says CAN spokesperson Stephen McKernon. ‘They also need to be aware of their behaviour on the road. Cyclists today have a responsibility to make cycling work better for other cyclists, for other road users, and for future cyclists too. But they need to be encouraged and supported to do this.’ The CAN guide brings together seven things that make cycling great now, and will help more cyclists enjoy it in the future. The guide is provided in full on the CAN website (http://can.org.nz/articles) with other resources. Two points in the...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

The Cycling Advocates’ Network (CAN) is saddened by the death of Christchurch City Councillor and former paralympian Graham Condon in a cycling accident in suburban Christchurch last Saturday. The driver of the car striking Councillor Condon was 15 years old and appears to have lost control of her car.CAN spokesperson Stephen McKernon says “the number of car accidents among young people is a serious issue. Not only are increasing numbers being killed, they are also contributing significantly to death and injury among other road users.”CAN proposes young people should not be eligible for a learner licence until the age of 16, and a full licence till the age of 19. All driver licence training and testing should cover respect for and correct behaviour around cyclists. In accidents involving cyclists, any legal assessments of fault should be weighted against the car driver, as should...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

"We would like to express our deepest sympathy and support for the families of the three cyclists who were struck by cars this weekend, two of them fatally,” says Cycling Advocates´ Network (CAN) spokesperson Stephen McKernon. “Cyclists nationwide will be shocked to learn of these deaths.” “Two of these cyclists were struck from behind in Taupo, during the week of a local campaign to educate motorists about sharing the road safely with cyclists. Another was struck from behind in Matamata,” says Mr. McKernon. "Both crashes occurred during what was otherwise a very successful Nationwide Bike Wise Week. We cannot imagine how distressed the motorists concerned must feel. It is a great tragedy that a few seconds of inattention by motorists can lead to two cyclists deaths." According to SPARC’s research from 2001, over 22% of New Zealanders cycle regularly – that’s more than one in five...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

The government's new transport target to increase cycling and walking to 30% of all trips by 2040 is welcome, but needs to happen much sooner, says Cycling Advocates Network (CAN) spokesperson Stephen McKernon. This week the Minister of Transport Annette King announced the National Transport Strategy’s combined target for walking and cycling is 30% of all trips by 2040, almost double the present figure. To help meet this target, the budget for walking and cycling will more than double to $28 million over the next ten years. Mr McKernon says the 30% target and increased funding reflect the increasing importance of modes that are healthy, responsible, safe and economical for people within the wider community. But the proposal also poses significant issues. ‘CAN would like to see the 30% target met in ten years, not 33. We cannot afford to move slowly on this,’ says McKernon. ‘New Zealand’...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

With daylight saving heralding changes in riding conditions, cyclists are being urged to light up and brighten up. Cycling Advocates' Network (CAN) spokesman Stephen McKernon says, “Cyclists should light up for morning, evening, and bad weather riding. Most of the 12 cycling fatalities that occurred in 2005 happened at night. Cycling fatalities have declined over recent years, at the same time as high-visibility riding gear and brighter lights have become more popular.” CAN strongly recommends high-visibility reflective gear such as fluorescent clothing, pack covers, and extra reflectors. "The use of high-visibility gear and stronger lights has become more popular over the last decade," McKernon says. "We suspect this may be why cycling fatalities have declined since 1998. Bike sales are up, our roads are busier, and cycling accidents have increased, but...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

New Zealand’s motoring and cycling organisations have joined forces to urge young cyclists to brighten up and to urge motorists to make space for cyclists. "With the return of students to schools and universities, plus the onset of winter, cyclists should brighten up for morning, afternoon, evening, and bad weather riding. High-visibility riding gear and brighter lights are cheap and popular, and every cyclist should use them," says Cycling Advocates' Network (CAN) spokesperson Stephen McKernon. Mike Noon, the AA’s General Manager for Motoring Affairs, says “drivers need to be alert for cyclists, especially at intersections. At this time of year we all need to make a special effort to look out for cyclists - give them at least one and a half metres when overtaking, and if it's not safe to pass then wait." "Motorists and cyclists both have rights and...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
21
Aug

Two wheels rule on Go By Bike 21 February 2008 Pedal power will rule this Wednesday (27 February) as Kiwis of all ages, shapes and sizes hit the streets on two wheels to celebrate national Go By Bike Day. Those who give cycling a go on Wednesday will be rewarded with free breakfasts and entertainment in 49 centres from Whangarei to Dunedin. Go By Bike Day events are being organised around the country by councils, sports trusts, cycle groups and other organisations as part of national Bike Wise Week (23 February to 2 March). Bike Wise Week is a nationwide campaign aimed at getting more Kiwis on their bikes. The latest data from the Ministry of Transport’s Household Travel Survey shows that while there are 1.3 million cyclists in New Zealand, only a small proportion use a bike for transport, with just two percent of journeys to work by cycle. The draft update of the New Zealand Transport...

August 21, 2008
cymbalista
19
Aug

14 August 2008 - "Bobbies on Bikes" is a new initiative to promote cycle safety and use of alternative means of transport. This is a joint project with Nelson City Council and local Police utilizing funding from the NZ Transport Agency. Four bikes have been purchased and training has been provided for police staff. Road Safety Co-ordinator Margaret Parfitt says, "Nelson City has a high number of cyclists and a roading and cycle network designed for growing numbers of commuter and recreational cyclists. However in Nelson and Tasman cyclists have traditionally been over represented in crash statistics." Police and other participating members of the local Road Safety Action Planning committee came up with the idea of having police officers riding cycles as a part of their normal duty as a way of engaging with the community and promoting safe cycling at the same time. The idea was endorsed...

August 19, 2008
Patrick
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Aug

An article entitled "Woman badly hurt in cycle crash" was featured on the front page of the Manawatu Standard (Friday, August 15, 2008).  http://www.stuff.co.nz/4657088a6003.html A comment from Cycle Aware Manawatu member, Dr Christine Cheyne, entitled "Motorists must be vigilant". http://www.stuff.co.nz/4657087a6003.html?source=RSSmanawatustandard/head... Cycle Aware Manawatu want to work toward improving safety for cyclists through improved driver awareness and encouraging the addition of full cycle lanes to city streets, or appropriate and safe roading alternatives.

August 17, 2008
julied