Gold Coast Cycle Forum



Ben Wilson from from Bicycle Queensland was kind enough to let me post this to the forum. I think its worth reading, especially if your from QLD.


As you'd probably know - in response to the publicity following Luke
Harrop's death and other angry events on the Gold Coast, the Premier held a
summit on the Gold Coast last Friday.

It was done so quickly and without clear instruction (was it a Gold Coast
or Statewide summit? and who was invited?) that the process was slightly
flawed. There was no agenda or discussion paper for instance.

Nevertheless FULL credit to Premier Peter Beattie, Police Minister Tony
McGrady, plus the Police Commissioner for getting into a room with cycle
representatives. (And Gold Coast's Mayor Baildon and the Transport
Minister's right-hand-man)

Given the somewhat haphazard invitation list and timing/location of the
meeting (a working day, midday at Nerang) - it probably wasn't as good a
forum as it could have been.

Also, the State Cycle Committee had met in Brisbane just two days before
and spent an hour on the same issue, with reps from Police, QT, user groups
and others providing input. So it was two similar forums in 2 days.
Slightly confusing as some of the same ground is covered twice.

So what happened?

The meeting had invited guests down the front (with name tags without
organisations mentioned) and "observers" at the back. the Premier spoke
very well for 10 minutes, the Police statistics man also for 10 min, then
Police Minister chaired the meeting.

Invited guests included Bicycle Qld (Ben), Bicycle Gold Coast (Linda)
Cycling Queensland (racers - Peter Donkin) Cycling Australia ( Mike Victor
- racers too) Triathlon Aust, MS Society, several local cycling clubs
(racing) and several bike shops, and some bike education instructors.
(others who I didn't get the names of too) They spoke first.

I'd be a little critical that the most common and typical cyclist - the
ordinary person who rides a bike for fun or transport - was not picked up
sufficiently in the above.

Some major points raised included:

- BQ - called for police to consider greater response to cyclists'
complaints about particular drivers who may be habitual re-offenders. (This
was similar to Bicycle Gold Coast written submission) that cyclists who
lodge a complaint with the police in response to dangerous driving are
heard and recorded, and if the same driver is regularly reported then some
follow up (letter, ph call) is delivered.

- police and the public are ignorant of cyclists right to be on the road,
and two-abreast cycling is legal and safer

- Lots of talk of helmets and more stringent helmet waring enforcement -
though given the terms of reference of the summit this was a bit like
blaming the victim (all reported incidents that led to the summit involved
cyclists who were wearing helmets)

- Some mention of licencing riders (MS Society i think) and registration
from someone (missed where this came from) but BQ did circulate an info
sheet against registration and feels similarly regarding licencing.

- Bike Ed was mentioned and some professionals in the field spoke of it.

- There was much talk of off-road cycling tracks for high-speed cycling
(mostly from the racing and triathalon reps) and segregation of cyclists
from roads.

We took a dim view of this, and said so. Off-road high speed tracks would
be great for some training cyclists and race days, but would be very
expensive and wouldn't help ordinary people riding to work, for fun or to

As always, the thought of segregated off-road tracks for kids is wonderful,
until the $$ and intersection treatments are considered - they weren't in
this summit.

It was great to see the Minister had a summary of the submissions received
so far - well done to those people - and this week is also available for
more submissions. Most were good, with education being pushed as a key.

Disappointingly, many 'ideas' were raised by delegates or observers that
were not international best practice, nor seriously thought through. Also,
ideas were raised when they are already underway - like "Have a share the
road campaign like southern states" or "paint bike-lanes on the road"

The media reporting was fairly slap-dash. Old ideas were presented as new
and authoritive in print, but really there was not the scope in this
hastily organised summit for due consideration or debate.

Probably the most passionate words came from Col Stewart, who trains many
of the international triathletes, and was following Luke Harrop when he was
hit. He said verbal abuse and intimidation from drivers is rife, with
little police support for obvious cases in the past. He claims
international triathletes have told him they love the coast and its
facilities but the bad driver attitude means they are not training here in
summer anymore - and that came from Italians, English, Swiss and other

All in all - a good summit given the hurriedness of its happening, but no
new ground unearthed apart from a commitment from the Premier to do
something to protect cyclists - in itself a great achievement!
Admin. Its worth reading. I don't know what's worse - riding around Brisbane, Ipswich and the Gold Coast or seeing politicians grappling with issues that are beyond their abilities. The Premier said in Townsville today that he's frightened to ride his bike and thinks cyclists should be registered. He's done all the standard things like show concern, have a summit, ask for a report!

I agree with Ben a hurriedly convened summit won't fix a thing. We need a solution for all of Queensland and not just the Gold Coast or some other part.
The Premier said in Townsville today that he's frightened to ride his bike and thinks cyclists should be registered
. why should cyclists be registed?. they whould have to wear a number plate :D :D? now that is dorky.
most adult cyclists have car licences and know all the road rules and registering every kid who has a bike? phhtt
hey why not register all walking pedestrians, skate boarders etc? i agree if a incident with a car is reported nothing is done. unless maybe you where injured a lot.
Nicholas you're on the money. So is the Premier if he gets his way. Its a new source of revenue for him. ::)

With a few exceptions registration has not been successful elsewhere. Introducing a system like this means some form of compliance checking of cyclists. It all adds to the costs. Nice dilemma! Collect a new tax and don't do any checking. :eek:

Not too many votes in taxing the kids who must make up the bulk of cyclists. Hey kid pay your tax to ride to school.

Premier dropped his smart state car registration plates. This little episode should go in the same bin. 8)
But, as usual, what happened? Bugger all really. All they're really talking about now is banning cyclists from the Pacific Motorway. It all seems a little pointless given that:

a) very few cyclists actually use the motorway in any case

b) none of the recent incidents actually happened on the motorway

c) given that the motorway has 3 metre shoulders, there are probably other, more dangerous roads more worthy of focus (anyone ridden across the Sundale bridge lately?).

My own, rather cynical view is that this whole thing is a bit of a cop-out. Rather than deal with the real issue, let's make laws governing the victim and prevent them from going somewhere that they might be a target for rednecks. What's next? Women being banned from areas with high rape statistics? What a joke.
Several weeks after the Gold Coast Forum the Minister has come out and said:

Police, Corrective Services & assisting on the Carpentaria Minerals Province,
Tony McGrady


Public submissions from cyclist safety summit under consideration

A raft of suggestions to improve cyclist safety throughout Queensland are under close scrutiny by the State Government.
Minister for Police and Corrective Services, Tony McGrady, said he was in the process of considering final public submissions from a cyclist safety summit held at the Gold Coast earlier this year.

The summit, which was also attended by the Premier, discussed increasing public concern in relation to the safety of cyclists at the Gold Coast and throughout Queensland.

Mr McGrady said he had recently written to interested parties to forward the minutes of the meeting and request final submissions.

"I have already received back some submissions and I will of course be giving these my full consideration," he said.

"Suggestions range from increased awareness of safety issues to improved cyclist infrastructure.

"I will be collating all the information received with a view to developing a Government policy on the issue.

"All road users have a right to safety and this is why the State Government convened this summit.

"We will continue to work with a range of groups in the interest of improving safety for all road users," Mr McGrady said.

Don't read it too closely you'll find all the gaps. Yes Minister Queensland style. Written by a beaurocrat with the objective of having the Minister seen to be doing something. If this is the best thats on offer God help us.

As one astute judge said today on a totally unrelated matter the Government has taken its eye off the ball. Well you can add this load of hot air to the pile.
Yeah. Also saw on ABC news last night that cyclists have been banned from the Pacific Motorway again. Seems to be the way in this country, punish the victim.

It just shows that they don't really give a ****. The Premier sed he's scared to ride his bike? Why is he scared huh? Coz his laws are not cutting it?
Maybe he should ride everywhere and when some uneducated rednek hails abuse he can say "I'm the Premier asshole - back off" then maybe people will stop and think "this cyclist i'm about to yell at could be the Premier"
Of course if they didn't vote for him, he's screwed but the awereness fromhim to realise how bloody bad it really is.
All fat pollies should ride so they know what they're dealing with instead of complaining that their tax-paid mashed potato is too peppery. :-[

Now we're off the freeway AGAIN. That's just pathetic. I wouldn't ride on it anyway becoz I know of two people who have been hit (one was in a coma for a week) but if they wanna ride it - why not? There's 4 lanes and a run-off lane. No excuses really. And at the end of the day it's a new freeway - why isn't it modern?? It ran way over budget so what's a few more tonnes of bitumen on a bikeway??


The political response is usually to show concern (al la the Ministers media statement) suggest a course of action and sell the positives of taking that action. The action and sale parts will be interesting to watch. Don't hold your breath. ??? ??? ???
Of course if they didn't vote for him, he's screwed but the awereness fromhim to realise how bloody bad it really is.

This is the big problem here, votes. Peter Beattie may well be aware of how bad the situation is, but just remember that cyclists are a minority here. Any action that might upset the majority (i.e. the motorists) probably won't win him too many votes. So even if he does have some useful ideas, some of the other fat cats in the party would put a stop to them. Remember, the Premier is really just a figurehead.

Now we're off the freeway AGAIN. That's just pathetic. I wouldn't ride on it anyway becoz I know of two people who have been hit (one was in a coma for a week) but if they wanna ride it - why not? There's 4 lanes and a run-off lane. No excuses really. And at the end of the day it's a new freeway - why isn't it modern?? It ran way over budget so what's a few more tonnes of bitumen on a bikeway??

At the southern end of the Gold Coast, there is a very good service road that runs alongside the Gold Coast Highway (from Currumbin to Coolangatta). I use this service road everyday, and I think this is where the solution to this dilemma lies.

I don't ride the motorway for no reason other than the fact that I find it boring. I'd rather look at some scenery than 8 lanes of bitumen. However can anyone else see a precedent here? If cyclist deaths continue (and the majority of them have happened in places other than the motorway), I wonder which other roads will be deemed "too dangerous for cyclists".

It scares me. :eek:

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