Greens applaud Minister’s softening on bike safe passing distances

Greens MLC Lynn MacLaren Greens MLC Lynn MacLaren has applauded the Road Safety Minister's suggestion today that the Barnett Government will introduce safe passing distance rules for cars approaching bikes, after the Government in 2014 refused to back the Greens’ Bill for the same thing.

“While independent analysis of Queensland’s two-year trial of similar legislation is yet to come in, the response to the law among Queenslanders has been very positive, even among people who initially had reservations,” Ms MacLaren said.
“The Queensland RAC today called for that State to continue with the laws as a permanent measure and this I think has pushed WA’s Road Safety Minister to accept that these are sensible measures that do not create hardship for motorists and do improve safety.
“Perth and other WA cities are ideally suited for cycling but recent RAC research here has shown many Western Australians don’t ride their bikes because of fear of motor traffic.
“The safe passing distance rules are already in place in South Australia, the ACT and Tasmania and were recently introduced in New South Wales.
“WA was been lagging behind most other jurisdictions.

“A trial in WA could be a key part of making the new law successful when it is eventually adopted at a national level, as it as it helps to raise awareness.

“It is essential that more transport infrastructure funding in WA goes to building better cycle lanes and paths but in the meantime, safe passing distance laws are a relatively low-cost and immediate way we can improve safety.

“It is great that the Greens’ hard work in pushing for this law in WA seems to be paying off.”