20 December 2017
Waipa bike riders and motorists are being urged to share the road with care over summer.
The increasing interest in cycling, plus sales of e-bikes, means more people on bikes are likely to be on Waipa roads over the summer break. Waipa's road safety co-ordinator Megan Jolly said Waipa's country roads are hugely popular with cyclists, but that brings challenges.
"We're urging motorists to be particularly aware of the increased likelihood of cyclists on the road over summer," Jolly said.
"Only pass people on bikes if it is safe to do so and please leave at least a metre and a half between you and the rider."
Waipa is building an increasing number of cycleways and walkways in the district with Te Ara Kihikihi, the trail between Te Awamutu and Kihikihi, opening just last month. But that does not necessarily mean fewer riders on the road, Jolly said.
"Cycleways are generally used by children and families and those happier to go at a slower pace," Jolly said. "But more serious cyclists, with purpose-built road bikes, are less likely to use cycleways as they will be going a lot faster. So expect bike riders to still be on Waipa roads.
Danger points for people on bikes and drivers include the brows of a hill, corners and people coming out of driveways in urban areas," she said.
"It's pretty simple. If motorists don't have 100 per cent visibility, be extra careful.
People on bikes should also do their part by making sure they are dressed brightly and using lights to increase their visibility. They should also be vigilant about traffic approaching from behind and pull over to the left."
When using shared paths, cyclists should warn other users of their approach by ringing a bell or calling out.
People on bikes should not ride up the left hand side of trucks or buses stopped at intersections turning left, she said. When vehicles turn left, cyclists are likely to be in a 'blind spot' for the driver and the consequences could be fatal.
For more information, contact: Nicole Nooyen, 027 807 3478