Tag Archives: Traffic

Vienna plans motorcycle CBD ban

Vienna plans to ban motorcycles from the CBD in a disconcerting move that is spreading around the world to curb traffic congestion.

This is despite Vienna being ranked the eighth best city in the world for commuting, according to German automotive website, Kfzteile24.

The study looked at traffic jams, parking, road rage crashes and fuel costs. Perth rated the best place in Australia for commuting at 19th, followed by Brisbane at 45th, Melbourne 55th, Adelaide surprisingly at 57th and Sydney worst 61st.

Last year, Melbourne renewed calls for a CBD congestion tax, but now the plan is to include motorcycles and scooters.

It’s not alone as cities around the world have introduced or are introducing congestion charges and bans on motorcycles not only to reduce traffic congestion but also air pollution:

  • Singapore has road-user charges in a CBD zone resulting in a 20% reduction in delays and plans to ban pre-2003 motorcycles throughout the city in 10 years;
  • Milan’s Ecopass charges all vehicles entering a designated traffic restricted zone and bans old cars and bikes that do not meet set emissions standards;
  • A cordon charge in Stockholm has led to 24% fewer commuter trips by car (motorcycles and scooters are exempt), with most people switching to public transport and Gothenburg following the same example;
  • China and Brazil are considering congestion charges in various cities;
  • Oregon, USA, has trialled a voluntary pay-per-mile distance charge resulting in a 22% drop in traffic in peak hours and a 91% approval by participants; and
  • London’s Low Emissions Zone charge has helped stabilise traffic congestion over the past decade despite population growth of 1.3 million. Motorcycles, scooters and electric vehicles are exempt, but from next month some older bikes will cop a £12.50 daily fee to access the new London Ultra Low Emissions Zone.London roundabout has safe boxes for cyclists, but not motorcyclists or scooter riders

Vienna ban

Vienna plans to ban all kinds of motorised vehicles, including even electric bicycles, motorcycles and scooters.

The only motorists excluded from the CBD ban are those who have a private garage in the vehicle-free zone and also have a parking permit.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Worldwide Ride to Work Day

The 29th worldwide, annual Ride To Work Day on Monday (15 June 2020) will be a great demonstration to the world of what post-lockdown commuting could look like.

Unfortunately, in Australia, it’s winter and we don’t join in the worldwide event, so we lose that global impact.

Instead, we will have our fourth Ride to Work Week in September 2020.

Spread out over a week instead of a single day, it doesn’t have the media impact of the worldwide single-day event.

Our event is organised by motorcycle companies and the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries.

They target riders (and inactive riders), rather showing the rest of the population that riding is a great alternative to being stuck in traffic.

There is no media event and virtually no broad-based advertising.lane filter filtering splitting traffic commute commuting congestion Brisbane worldwide

Worldwide event

In contrast, the worldwide Ride to Work Day targets non-riders and seeks employer recognition and support for this form of transportation.

The focus is on increasing public and government awareness of the societally positive benefits of utility riding.

Adding motorcycles and scooters helps traffic flow better, according to Ride to Work, a non-profit advocacy organisation.

Studies have also shown that across the same distances, riders reach their destinations up to 20% faster than those using automobiles. Most motorcycles and scooters also consume less resources per kilometre than automobiles.

The worldwide Ride to Work website includes:

  • Useful tools and in-depth information about issues and programs;
  • An interactive forum to discuss Riding to Work;
  • An assortment of Ride to Work supporting merchandise;
  • A wholesale program available to dealers and retailers; and
  • A photo gallery to show your Every Day Ride on the website.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Call for Ebikes to be registered

Ebikes or pedal-assisted electric bicycles are growing out of control in many countries, creating danger for other road users, robbing motorcyclists of parking and giving all riders a bad name.

There are now calls in Australia and around the world for regulation or registration for these vehicles.

In China it is so bad, more than 10 major cities have restricted or banned them, despite the bikes providing cheap and easy transport.

Many see them as a green transport alternative that free up the city and provide cheap transportation with some health benefits.

However, some Chinese authorities claim ebikes are dominating bike lanes, endangering bicycle, motorcycle and scooter riders as well as other motorists. They are also riding on footpaths and paying little attention to road rules.

Ebikes epidemic

ebikesChinese bikes destined for Europe (Image: Electrek)

Many other countries are now finding similar problems with the burgeoning growth of ebikes and the EU has complained about China dumping bikes in Europe.

There is a fear that they will grow even faster in the post-pandemic world where people eschew public transport because of the dangers of infection.

Motorcycle manufacturers such as Ducati and even Harley-Davidson are getting into the ebikes trend.

rude boy bicycles ebikesHarley ebikes

Like many countries including Australia, you can ride an ebike without a licence.

In Australia, they are limited to 25km/h, but illegal and virtually untraceable modifications can make them such faster and more dangerous.

Ebikes menace

Long-time motorcycle advocate Rodney Brown says they are a menace.

“Ebikes are unregistered, the riders unlicensed, some not roadworthy, uninsured and electrical grid drainers,” he says. 

“They need to be registered, insured, roadworthy, speed restricted, age restricted and need to heavily enforced.”

Rodney Brown Rider's call for ute tarps rejected bike lanesRodney Brown

He says they are also taking up valuable footpath parking space in Melbourne.

This follows calls last year by the the Tasmanian Motorcycle Council for free identification numbers, not registration, for cyclists over 18 so their traffic offences can be reported and riders fined.

Their call was backed by Emeritus Professor of Transport Marcus Wigan who says electric bicycles and scooters blur the lines between bicycles and registered motorcycles and scooters.

He says bicycles are legal transport and as such should be bound by the same features of ID as other vehicles using the roads.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Call to replace rego with user-pays fuel levy

A riders group is seeking to scrap vehicle registration in favour of more expensive fuel through an extra state fuel levy, plus a user-pays tracking system for electric vehicles.

The Queensland-based Motorcycle Advocacy Group Facebook group which claims membership of more than 1100 riders, mainly in South-East Queensland, has sent its proposal to the national cabinet.

Unfair rego

Spokesperson David White says the current fixed-cost vehicle registration system is unfair, especially to those with multiple vehicles, while the current federal fuel excise is diminishing as vehicles become more economical.

The group wants rego axed and replaced by a state fuel levy on top of the current federal fuel levy.

“There is a need for a simple, efficient and effective way to improve road funding and a user-pays system for registered road vehicles could achieve this,” the MAG proposal says.

Motorway tolls traffic lane filteringDavid White with his 2007 BMW R1200S

“A user-pays fuel levy system for internal-combustion-powered registered road vehicles could be in addition to fuel excise.”

However, they say there would still need to be a nominal annual fee for each vehicle to cover administrative costs.

“Trailers and caravans could have their registration and insurance paid through the extra use of fuel by the towing vehicle,” the proposal suggests.

“The levy could be based on zones, a higher levy in urban zones and lowest in regional and remote zones. This may also lead to a quicker uptake of electric vehicles in cities and urban areas.

A zonal system would be fairer and more equitable as the average fuel consumption for country motorists is usually greater than the average fuel consumption of city motorists. City motorists commonly have a range of essential services close by and also have access to good public transport facilities.”

David says motorists driving and riding electric vehicles should have a user-pays system based on distance travelled via a secure tracking device that protects location privacy.

Levy advantages

David says their proposal would “help meet the current needs of those in financial hardship, boost jobs throughout the economy, lower emissions and traffic congestion, add to the health and wellbeing of the general population and boost productivity quite significantly”.

Owners of multiple vehicles wouldn’t pay onerous rego costs per vehicle under the proposal.

Riders would also be advantaged by the comparatively low fuel consumption of motorcycles and scooters.fuel gauges MBW Motorbike Writer fuel scooter economy

“As motorcyclists, we have noticed repeatedly the omissions of  motorcycles and scooters in most of the inquiries, reviews, reports and plans  that deal with land transport reform and traffic congestion,” David says.

“It is also apparent that these inquiries, reviews, reports and plans do not address some of the basic needs and aspirations of private vehicle owners.  

“Despite overwhelming evidence that reform of land transport is long overdue, these inquiries, reviews, reports and plans haven’t been embraced by the Australian people.”

User pays

There have been several other user-pays proposals over the years including a congestion tax that would be offset by cheaper rego.

In New Zealand, riders get cheaper rego if they complete a rider training course.

  • What do you think of this proposal? Leave your comments in the box below.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Should motorcycles be allowed in bicycle lanes?

Should motorcycles and scooters be allowed in bicycle lanes for short intervals at a limited speed to free up inner-city commuter traffic?

It’s not such an unusual proposal.

Motorcycles and scooters have their own lanes in several countries and even VicRoads considered it for inclusion in the lane filtering rules after it was recommended in a 2014 online cycling survey.

Unfortunately, the proposal was rejected, but now many be the time to reconsider.

As pandemic restrictions ease, many people believe public transport is a health risk.

This could turn the commute from lockdown to gridlock as train and bus commuters return to their cars!

So the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries is calling for more people to ride to work while the cycling lobby is asking for $300m to be spent on more bike lanes.

Maybe we should put the two proposals together and allow motorcycles and scooters to share bicycle lanes!

The Australian Motorcycle Council points out that bicycle lanes rob traffic lanes of space which makes lane filtering more difficult.

Bicycle lanes trial

Rodney Brown Rider's call for ute tarps rejected bike lanesRodney Brown wants motorcycles and scooters t be allowed to use bicycle lanes

Long-term motorcycle advocate Rodney Brown made an application in 2015 for motorcycles and scooters to use bicycle lanes.

He is now calling for the issue to be reconsidered.

Rod does not believe motorcycles and scooters should travel in bicycle lanes for the whole of their journey.

He suggests a six-month trial where motorcyclists and scooter riders are allowed to use them only for short parts of the journey where traffic is congested, not just at intersections where they can access bike lanes now.

Bike lanes

“This would have a number of benefits, including easing of traffic congestion, improving rider safety through reduced motorcycle and scooter crashes, better use of road space and an environmental win as a result of reduced emissions,” he says.

His initial proposal was backed by several rider advocacy groups, including the popular motorcycle riders’ rights group, Freedom Riders Australia, who would like the plan introduced nationwide.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Inactive riders urged to ride again!

Inactive motorcyclists who haven’t ridden for some time are being urged to ride again, especially for commuting, as the pandemic travel restrictions begin to ease across the country.

This comes as the national cycling lobby is calling for $300 million to be spent on bike lanes.

Inactive riders

Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries motorcycle manager Rhys Griffiths points out that there are about 2.1 million licensed riders in Australia and about 870,000 registered motorcycles and scooters.

That means there are about 1.2 million inactive riders with a licence, he says.

“COVID-19 has changed the way we go about our lives.  Motorcycles and scooters present a clever solution to the challenges the pandemic presents,” he says. 

“A motorbike might well be the best way to maintain social distance without creating congestion. Riders can avoid the contagion risks presented by public transport, while cutting commute times by lane filtering through increased traffic. 

“So the message is, get them out of the shed, get them serviced and get riding. If you haven’t got a bike, your local dealer is open for business.” 

Rhys says the plea to inactive riders will be a theme of their fourth Ride to Work Week in September 2020. Bike lanes lane filtering ride to work tax congestion

He says they will generate awareness through the website and social media.

The FCAI message to inactive riders follows recent surveys which suggest commuters will avoid public transport.

The fear is that this will send Australia from lockdown to gridlock.

The FCAI says motorcycle and scooter riders have two advantages:

  • They can mitigate infection risks by maintaining social distance; and
  • As commuter traffic volumes potentially increase beyond pre-pandemic levels, riders can nimbly negotiate traffic and park conveniently, cutting commute times.

Rhys also reminded riders to strictly observe all social distancing and contagion control requirements, and to regularly disinfect helmets, gloves and any high-touch surfaces on vehicle controls.

He also advises riders to consult their DIY guide to ensuring your motorcycle is ready for the road.

Cyclist lobby calls for bike lanesCyclists in bike lanes ride to work day lane filtering bus lanes reward

Meanwhile, the cyclist lobby is putting pressure on the federal government to spend $300m to build more bike lanes as post-pandemic traffic is expected to explode.

The national cycling safety charity Amy Gillett Foundation has commissioned a national poll which shows “massive support” for safe separate cycling infrastructure.

They claim a “doubling in cycling participation during the coronavirus lockdowns, as Australians turn to bikes for effective social distancing, for transport, enjoyment, and exercise”.

The Foundation is calling for $300m to be allocated from the $3.8billion infrastructure commitment made in late November 2019 by the Federal Government to build bike lanes.

They say the investment could be made immediately as part of the $500m Local Roads and Community Infrastructure announcement last week (22 May 2020).

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Pandemic leads to speed epidemic

Traffic offences are understandably down as there are fewer vehicles on the road, but the lockdown is also creating lonely roads where motorists are hitting some ridiculous speeds.

We have seen several reports of high-speed police pursuits around there world, but the highest speed was clocked by a Nebraska motorcyclist at 170mph (273km/h).

The rider tried to exit an interstate but lost control of his Honda motorcycle and slid down an embankment. The state trooper dragged him out of a pool of leaked fuel and slapped him with a fine for suspicion of wilful reckless driving and flight to avoid arrest, among other offences.

Aussie hi-jinks

Some riders in Australia are also taking advantage of the lonely roads, often with late-night and early morning high-speed runs. 

Two 20-something motorcyclists riding at speeds up to 200km/h have been charged following two separate pursuits with NSW Police in Sydney’s south west in recent days.

NSW Police say that during the lockdown there has been a 40% increase in high-range speeding offences over 30km/h and 45km/h compared with the same period last year.

Queensland Police gave us three examples of high-speed riders who recently copped high-range speeding offences costing $1245 and eight demerit points:

  • On April 1 around 4.14pm a 31-year-old man riding a Harley Davidson was allegedly detected travelling 194km/h in 100 zone on Logan Motorway at Larapinta;
  • On April 2 around 10am a 37-year-old man on a Yahmaha motorcycle was allegedly detected travelling 126km/h in a 60 zone on to Logan Motorway onramp at Drewvale; and
  • On April 6 around 10.30am a 61-year-old man on a Honda was detected travelling 102km/h in a 60 zone on Tamborine Oxenford Road at Wongawallen.

Test of restraint

restrictionsGoogle Maps shows how far Ipswich riders can go.

This weekend, Queensland will allow riders to travel 50km from their home for recreation.

It is among several relaxation measures that will be used as a test to see if the public can exercise some restraint and control.

Authorities say they will penalise flagrant abuses.

They may also penalise the rest of the community by tightening restrictions again if too many people flout the rules as we saw last week when Sydney opened beaches only to close them again after they became overcrowded.

Meanwhile, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian says riding a motorcycle is exercise and therefore legal.

She says NSW Police have not booked anybody for riding a motorbike, “because that is akin to riding an exercise bike”.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Oxley Highway to reopen for one lane

The Oxley Highway will reopen to one lane of traffic by this weekend under strict speed management with the support of escort vehicles.

A 10km section between Ralfes Trail and the Gingers Creek store will be open to one lane of traffic with alternate flow under the control of escort vehicles from Transport for NSW.

Reopen Oxley Highway
One-lane section

The decision is a welcome relief for popular riders’ rest stop Gingers Creek Roadhouse owner Gary Hartas.

His cafe has been closed to business since the highway was shut by bushfires on 25 October 2019 between Walcha and Long Flat. He also lost the accommodation building to the bushfires.

Support fire-ravaged Gingers Creek rider cafe
Accommodation destroyed

Staff member Tiohnee Ford started a GoFundMe page to support Gary while no income has been coming in. It has raised more than $7000.

Highway reopen

Oxley highway work bushfire
Oxley in flames

While the highway will reopen, repair work is still underway and expected to continue for several weeks into 2020 under traffic control.

Riders should expect lengthy delays, which means sitting at lights for some time in the heat, so take water with you.

However, don’t be deterred. It is still worth it to ride the rest of the highway and to support Gary’s cafe which is a popular rest stop for riders.

These traffic arrangements will operate 24 hours a day and remain in place until the highway is fully reopen.

Traffic control and a reduced speed limit will be in place in other sections for the safety of workers and motorists.

As there is a risk of rocks or trees falling onto the road surface in the event of high winds or significant rainfall, Transport for NSW may close the highway again at short notice.

Oxley highway work bushfire
Burn-out retaining walls

Many roads in NSW and Queensland remain closed due to bushfires and subsequent damage.

The Cunningham Highway in South East Queensland, did temporarily reopen, but it has closed again.

For more information on road closures, click on these: Queensland TrafficNSW Live Traffic App, WA Main Roads, South Australia, Tasmania and VicRoads.

You can also check the various state fire services websites by going to this central MYFIREWATCH service, then click on the state/territory.

Bushfire survival guide:

By all means riders should head out into the country to spend their much-needed dollar in drought-stricken areas, but they should also be alert to the bushfire conditions.

The best survival tip for a bushfire is to avoid it.

Apart from the above, you can also check the automobile clubs’ websites for the relevant state, as well as transport department traffic sites.

Try searching the Facebook pages of local fire and police pages.

Of course, you can use your eyes to see where the smoke is and use your commonsense to gauge wind direction and potential fire direction.

However,  don’t think you can outrun a bushfire. They can spread faster than any motorcycle can go, often jumping roadways, reducing your chance of survival.

Bushfires Harley Softail

Follow directions

It is not only stupid, but also unlawful to disobey a police or emergency services direction.

If you are told not to go down a road or there is a roadblock, you must not got that way.

The same goes for flood situations.

Don’t start a bushfire

Take notice of total fire ban signs and warnings as you don’t want to start a bushfire.

Fines are hefty and police have been severe in punishing offenders. Don’t expect a good-natured warning!

Riders should also be aware they can accidentally start a fire by parking their bike on dry grass or leaves.

Firefighters say about 40% of all bushfires are accidentally started by humans dropping cigarette butts, campfires, discarding bottles, sparks from machinery and motorcycles.

The catalytic convertor, which is often underneath, is the hottest part of your bike and can easily spark a fire.

Adventure riders who travel off road should take special care.Bushfires BMW R 1200 GS

Caught in a bushfire

If you are caught in a bushfire, your phone (or EPIRB, beacon, etc) will be your best friend.

Work out where you are exactly and then contact police and emergency services to give them your location.

Park your bike behind a solid structure to block as much heat as you can.

Turn off your bike’s engine, but leave the lights and/or hazard lights on.

Stay near your bike, but not too close in case it goes up in flames.

Try to get down low, near a water source or below the level of the fire as they move faster uphill.

Also try to get upwind from a fire.

Dangers of bushfires

Dehydration motorcycle gear Riders dies of dehydration in heatwave dust storm

Riders are more vulnerable than motorists in cars because they have no air conditioning to regulate air and temperature.

The biggest dangers for riders are from smoke inhalation, low visibility and eye irritation from smoke.

Carry water with you to flush out sore eyes and to ensure you stay hydrated.

Tips to avoid dehydration in a heatwave:

  1. Don’t drink too much alcohol the night before a ride. It has a diuretic effect which means it causes you to urinate more water than you take in which means you are losing fluid. And you can’t counteract that by drinking lots of water because most of it will go out in your urine. Obviously, don’t drink alcohol while you are riding!
  2. Start drinking water as soon as you wake and keep sipping water right up until you get on your bike. It takes about half an hour for water to reach your muscles. Guzzling water just before a ride is not good as it can make your stomach to cramp. The Royal Flying Doctor Service which has attended dehydrated riders in the Outback, recommends carrying 10 litres of water per day! Read their Outback riding tips here.
  3. Wear ventilated motorcycle clothing. Leathers may protect you better in a crash, but they create a “microclimate” which impairs your ability to lose heat. As a result you will produce more sweat to decrease your core temp. Instead, wear a flow-through jacket. There are heaps of options on the market. Make sure they have vents in the back so the air flows through. Also, loosen the sleeves so you get plenty of air on your wrists which have a lot of blood vessels close to the skin to effectively cool you down. However, be aware that a flow-through jacket cools you down because it is drying the sweat off your skin which can lead to dehydration. A set of Ventz up your sleeve will also keep you cool as air flows up your arms.However, don’t be fooled by your level of coolness as ventilation can also cause you to loose more water through evaporation. So you still need to keep drinking plenty of water.

    Ventz motorcycle jacket vents - pain heatwave dust storm
    BUY Ventz motorcycle jacket vents NOW

  4. Don’t be tempted to remove your jacket in the heat! Exposed skin may feel cooler, but that’s because the sweat is evaporating quicker, but that is just making you more dehydrated. And while your skin feels cool, you’ll be tricked into staying in the sun longer which leads to sunburn. That also leads to dehydration because your body needs water to repair and renew damaged skin.
  5. Get a Camelbak or other brand of water-dispensing unit so you can continue to take small sips of water while you are riding. I’ve seen riders on GoldWings and other big tourers with cup holders so they can take slurps from a water bottle. That’s obviously not as safe as the hands-free Camelback option, but anything is better than nothing. Some people don’t like Camelbaks because the water gets hot, but the temperature of the water doesn’t affect dehydration.Camelbak reduces dehydration heatwave dust storm
  6. Stop more often than usual and hang out in the shade or in an air-conditioned cafe. Since you are drinking lots of fluids, you will probably need to stop anyway!
  7. While you’re stopped, have a coffee, but take it easy. No need to swear off your favourite caramel latte, but avoid excess coffee. That also goes for caffeinated drinks such as Red Bull. High levels of caffeine have a diuretic effect just like alcohol.
  8. While having a coffee break, avoid having too many sweet cakes, donuts and muffins. Sugar can dehydrate you if it gets to very high levels in your blood. This can happen if you are a diabetic, take certain medications or have an infection or some organ diseases. Sugar causes your kidneys to produce more urine to eliminate the sugar, leading to dehydration. Likewise, don’t drink too many sugary drinks. Best to stick to plain water, real fruit juices with no added sugar or drinks such as Gatorade that replace salts and minerals lost in sweat.
  9. We’ve talked a lot about urine and it’s important that you monitor the colour. It should be a straw colour. If it’s too dark, you are dehydrated.
  10. Sweat also depletes your body of sodium and if it becomes too low, it can cause many of the same symptoms as dehydration. The average diet probably has enough sodium, but it’s good to have a little bit of salt on your meals or drink sports drinks that have a sodium supplement. However, beware of sports drinks with caffeine and sugar.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

World’s best and worst commuting traffic

Aussie commuting traffic is fastest and safest in Perth and the worst in Sydney, according to a new statistical analysis of 100 major cities in the world.

The 2019 Driving Cities Index, commissioned by European car parts retailer Mister Auto, considers commuting traffic speeds, road condition, congestion, road rage, fatality rates, air pollution and costs such as parking and fuel.

Best commuting traffic

The best city for commuting traffic was Calgary in Canada, a country which had several cities in the top 10.

It was followed by Dubai, Ottawa, Bern and El Paso.

Perth was 13th, Brisbane 66th, Melbourne 83rd and Sydney 86th.

Commuting traffic lane filtering speed wet NSW sydney police commuting
Perth commute is best even in the rain!

That is despite Melbourne rating much worse than Sydney for fatalities and road rage.

Canberra and Adelaide were not included as the study “focuses on the largest cities in each country”. However Mister Auto will “consider including these cities in expanded future iterations”.


Worst cities were mainly in Asia and Africa led by Mumbai in India followed by Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia, Kolkata in India and Lagos in Nigeria.

Results are similar to a 2017 German study of the world’s 100 major cities.

It rated Perth the best place in Australia for commuting at 19th, followed by Brisbane at 45th, Melbourne 55th, Adelaide surprisingly at 57th and Sydney worst 61st.

While lane filtering now allows riders to dodge the worst of the daily commute, riders still face commuting costs of fuel and parking, traffic crashes and road rage.

The Mister Auto survey found the state capital cities’ road conditions and fuel costs were the same rating them at 75th worst roads in the world and 78th for fuel costs.

Other results, listed best to worst, include:

Melbourne roads lane filtering more often congestion promote
Melbourne traffic

Daily average congestion

  • 13 Perth
  • 28 Brisbane
  • 43 Melbourne
  • 66 Sydney

Commuting speeds

  • 11 Perth
  • 20 Brisbane
  • 58 Melbourne
  • 89 Sydney

Road rage

lane filter filtering splitting traffic commute commuting congestion Brisbane
Brisbane traffic
  • 20 Brisbane
  • 41 Perth
  • 47 Sydney
  • 50 Melbourne


  • 33 Perth
  • 40 Brisbane
  • 42 Sydney
  • 71 Melbourne

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Narrow lanes would promote riding

Rather than making roads wider, new research shows that adding more narrower lanes to existing roads would not only aid traffic flow but also promote more motorcycles and scooters.

University of Melbourne professor Chair of Statistics and motorbike rider Prof Richard Huggins says the plan has some merit.

The Grattan Institute suggests narrow lanes would reward motorists in smaller cars and on powered two wheelers and encourage people to ditch big SUVs in the city.

Melbourne City Council’s future transport strategy has picked up on the idea which has been welcomed by the Victorian Motorcycle Council.

VMC media spokesman John Eacott says altering road design to include narrow lanes dedicated to small traffic such as micro and light cars and motorbikes would have a beneficial effect on congestion.

Prof Huggins says it would be a good idea “at least in Melbourne”.

Melbourne roads lane filtering more often congestion promote
Melbourne traffic

“It would make the last bit of people’s commute much easier and safer,” he says.

“We had a very informal chat with City of Melbourne a few years ago about something similar (back then a narrow lane for single track vehicles) but as there were no regulations to cover such a lane it didn’t get to square one.”

Promote small cars and bikes

The Grattan Institute report says Australian cars are getting wider.

In the early 2000s, Aussie motorists started ditching their large sedans for hatchbacks.

However, in the past decade or more, they have swung over to SUVs and pick-ups which are much wider.

The report claims these wide vehicles are causing congestion because they limit visibility and intimidate other drivers.

They say adding a narrow lane would encourage motorists to switch to smaller cars and motorcycles and increase the capacity of roads to carry traffic.

Of course, a simple solution would be to allow motorcycles to use bus lanes and bike lanes. (Motorcycles are allowed to use bus lanes only in NSW, ACT and some Melbourne streets on a trial basis.)

But there is another result which the safety Nazis will just love.

Narrow lanes would force drivers to be more cautious and slow down.Commute traffic lane filtering speed wet NSW sydney police commuting slow speeding speed limit

The Grattan Institute also suggested in 2017 that a congestion tax should be introduced in Sydney and Melbourne during peak hours within five years.

That is another suggestion that Melbourne City Council has embraced. Click here to read more.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com