Equal Green Time
On 1 March 2016, the NSW Government is bringing in higher penalties for bike offences, including $425 for running a red light. The Government argues that “fine equivalence” will accord riders equal status and safety outcomes. This is a hugely flawed, unjustified and dangerous approach as we’ve outlined at every opportunity (eg, Channel 9 TODAY Show (just use any old email address to bypass login) and in the written press). The move also exposes the Government to nonfeasance and misfeasance cases given its constant evasion of implementing material safety measures while the rate of rider deaths and injuries persists and in some cases, increases.
“Equality” with drivers is all very well, but what if the traffic lights don’t work well enough (or at all) for us? What can you do?
- Line your front wheel on the pavement detector to trigger the lights. The central line has extra wire and is more sensitive. On cycleways the best landing place is often indicated with diamonds. If you can’t see the detector loops, position yourself in the centre of the lane and behind the stop line. This RMS video explains more about how it all works;
- If you find signals that don’t work, call 131 700 to have them fixed. (They generally fix the sensitivity on traffic lane loops to pick up bikes within two working days). Make sure you also record the traffic light report either (or both) in the comments below and/or using our web-App, SeeClickFix (note: the App is no longer available for phones – contact us if you can assist us create a new version of the App);
- If you have to go through faulty signals, consider walking your bike so they can only fine you $71 as a pedestrian instead of $425. If you do get fined, check the record of signals reported as faulty to help you if you want to argue your case in court.
We welcome offers of assistance to create a pin-marking map for this webpage and a phone App to make the process of reporting and documenting even easier for riders.
Equality? yeah sure…