Bold Action Now
It is time for bold action now to enable every person, including older adults and children, in BC to cycle or walk safely for their everyday trips and recreation.
Investing $1 billion over ten years in cycling and walking will send a strong message to the world that BC is serious about addressing Climate Change.
Cycling and walking will become attractive choices for everyone, leading to significantly improved fitness and reduced greenhouse gas emissions, pollution, congestion, and traffic injuries and fatalities. The paths and protected bike lanes could also be used by people in wheelchairs and other mobile devices.
Investing in cycling and walking will benefit the economy by increasing tourism, reducing healthcare costs, increasing workplace productivity, attracting talented workers, and reducing the societal costs of traffic fatalities and injuries.
Cycling is Popular
There is broad public support for cycling improvements. In the B.C. on the Move Engagement Survey, 72% of respondents supported enhancing cycling infrastructure. Cycling is popular. Almost 70% of adults in BC ride a bicycle at least once a year, 42% at least once a month and 25% at least once a week. Many want to cycle more, with around 65% indicating they would ride more if there were separated bike lanes that protected them from traffic.
A Transportation Bargain
On a per dollar basis, we all benefit more from cycling more than other modes. While bike paths and protected bike lanes are a bargain that will benefit far more people per dollar invested than other transportation projects, it does take a significant amount of cash to build networks of them in communities around the Province. For example:
- Metro Vancouver: $850 million
- Capital Regional District: $275 million
- City of Kelowna: $267 million (cycling and walking)
- City of Chilliwack: $27 Million
- City of Kamloops: $13 Million
At current rates of investment, these plans will take 30, 40 or even 50 years to complete, leaving people to brave busy roads on their bikes or more likely, not bothering to bike at all. Today's children will be grandparents by then.
The Provincial investment combined with local and federal funds will enable the completion of ambitious local and regional plans across BC. For example, the Metro Vancouver Regional Cycling Strategy predicts that upon network build out, cycling will increase to 10% of trips. The CRD Regional Pedestrian and Cycling Master Plan predicts cycling network build out cycling mode share will increase to 15%.
The funding for the $1 billion investment could come from a variety of sources including an increase in the Carbon Tax, predicted budget surpluses, a reallocation of transportation budget, cutting the tax break on those earning over $150,000 or a tax on sugary drinks.
By providing people with practical and safe transportation choices, this investment would decrease the rate of the Carbon Tax required to meet Provincial goals also saving money for those who don't cycle or walk.
More Info5,592 signatures
I call upon the Government of BC to enable everyone in BC to cycle & walk in safety as part of their daily lives by implementing an Active Transportation Strategy that includes:
- Investing $1 billion over the next ten years to:
- Upgrade cycling & walking facilities on provincial roads & bridges
- Complete cycling & walking networks in communities across BC
- Provide safe routes to school for children
- Build trails & routes for cycling & walking tourism
- Ensuring that paths & protected bike lanes can be safely shared by people using wheelchairs, skateboards & in-line skates
- Enhancing cycling education for children & adults
- Promoting cycling & walking
- Encouraging electric bike use by eliminating the PST & providing rebates
Ryan Petersen posted about Safer Passing Law on Facebook 2017-04-17 22:02:49 -0700Support a 1.5m Safer Passing Law. Make our roads safer for cycling and walking.A Safer Passing Law requiring drivers to pass people cycling and walking by at least 1.5m would make our roads safer and more comfortable for residents and visitors. If there is more than one lane for traffic in the same direction, the driver would have to have to pass in the lane next to the one a vulnerable road user is traveling in.
While progress has been made, still relatively few roads in B.C. have bike lanes or shoulders and many don’t have sidewalks especially in rural areas forcing people to share the road with high speed motor vehicle traffic. While we strongly encourage governments to invest in protected bike lanes, paths and sidewalks, building them could take years. In the meantime, a Safer Passing Law will help improve safety.
Research elsewhere indicates that:
Close passes account for almost 1/3 of the threatening encounters people cycling have with those driving
Close passes are a particular problem in rural areas accounting for almost 50% of incidents
People who maintained an average of under 13km/h reported 3 times as many near misses per mile than those with an average of over 19km/h
Close passes are particularly a problem for women, who on average cycle more slowly than men, and experience a 50% higher rate of near misses than men
Enabling Education and Enforcement
The majority of drivers already pass people cycling and walking in a safe manner but the few that do not pose a potentially fatal risk to vulnerable road users. A Safe Passing law would help educate those that are unaware of how to pass safely and enable enforcement when needed.
Police initiatives to tackle drivers who pass cyclists too closely could prevent up to 28% of the crashes that kill and seriously injure cyclists, according to an analysis of crash data
Clarity for People Driving, Cycling and Walking
A cyclist can do little to avoid a hit from behind, and an objective, easy to estimate minimum passing distance is better than a subjective standard of safe driving behavior for much the same reason that a maximum speed limit is.
Not only does the MVA not currently define a minimum passing distance for motorists overtaking cyclists, there is confusion as to whether the language in the Act even applies to passing cyclists. Section 157 states that an overtaking vehicle “must cause the vehicle to pass to the left of the other vehicle at a safe distance.” Bicycles, however, are not “vehicles” by definition under the Act at s. 1. In any event, even where courts have accepted that motorists have an obligation to pass cyclists safely, what constitutes as a safe passing distance remains unclear.
A safe passing law would provide clarification that a motorist has a duty to leave a safe passing distance when passing a cyclist as well as definitive guidance on the minimum such distance. This avoids subjective assessments by motorist as to what constitutes a safe distance, and provide an objective standard for enforcement and education.
Safe passing distances have been specified by over 27 jurisdictions in North America, including Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia.
Following the death of rising cycling star Ellen Watters on a training ride in December 2016, the New Brunswick legislature is moving quickly to pass a safe passing distance law.
Nevada’s safe passing law requires passing inimmediate left lane, if there is more than one lane in the same direction.
Ottawa bike police are using a sonar device to measure the distance between drivers and cyclists. As in Ontario and other jurisdictions, we also recommend an educational campaign be undertaken to ensure motorists are aware of the law before enforcement campaigns.
Let the Premier Know You Want a Safer Passing LawTell them about your close calls or crashes caused by drivers passing too closely. Let them know that a safer passing law and enforcement would would help protect your family and friends.276 PEOPLE HAVE SENT EMAILS224 needed to reach 500276 PEOPLE HAVE SENT EMAILSBC Cycling:firstname.lastname@example.orgThank You for Supporting a Safer Passing LawDear recipient.first_name_or_friend
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Please join me in helping to make BC safer for people who cycle and walk. Send a email in support of a Safer Passing Law in BC requiring motor vehicles to pass those cycling and walking by at least 1.5m.
Let the political leaders know how a Safer Passing Law would make cycling safer and more enjoyable for you and your family and friends.
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