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Discussion: NSW New Bike laws

in: Orienteering; General

Jan 28, 2016 6:16 AM # 
Why are they doing this?

Does it make money for the government, will they get some more votes, have they done a deal with a minor party? As a non NSW resident it makes it very hard to ride a bike in the state with these new laws. Pity the poor grey nomads with their bikes on the back of the RV as the travel across the border

My West Australian drivers license lets me drive a car in NSW but not a bike?
Jan 28, 2016 6:45 AM # 
Doesn't your licence have your photo on it?

It wasn't that long ago that all the other states complained about WA doing away with vehicle rego stickers (they could no longer prove that WA vehicles were registered) so I guess they're getting their own back.

Does it make money for the government?

YES, if you are caught speeding on a bike.

Will they get some more votes?

NO, the revheads who would support reduced cyclist numbers don't know how to vote.

Have they done a deal with a minor party?

Look the politician is clearly Gay so it can't be helped.
Jan 28, 2016 6:58 AM # 
How does it make it harder to ride a bike? Would you not normally have your wallet (with your driver's licence) with you anyway? *scratches head* I can't find anything saying it has to be a NSW ID...

The whinging about fines is ridiculous - how DARE bicycles be fined the same as cars for blowing red lights! Outrage! Disgust!
Jan 28, 2016 7:13 AM # 
AP just became perthnow.
Jan 28, 2016 7:45 AM # 
Weird, I was trying to imitate your log. ♥
Jan 28, 2016 8:06 AM # 
The message is pretty clear - we dont want you to ride your Bike and we are going to come down on you like a ton of bricks if you do.
Jan 28, 2016 8:10 AM # 
Really? Bearing in mind they also introduced minimum safe passing distances - this reads like "fine - you want to be treated like vehicles you can be treated like vehicles and have the same penalties for being a fuckwit."
Jan 28, 2016 8:35 AM # 
I think this thread needs a couple of edits.
Jan 28, 2016 8:52 AM # 
O-ing you are closer to it, is there a back story or do they really think this will keep riders safe?

It is not clear what sort of ID is required from what I have read, but for non Drivers it seems clear that it is a NSW ID that is required. Maybe an interstate Drivers License is OK.

So why bike riders and not boat skippers? What next will I need ID to walk around circular key in case I get run down by a passing ferry?
Jan 28, 2016 8:52 AM # 
What this thread needs are lamingtons.
Jan 28, 2016 8:54 AM # 
What next will I need ID to walk around circular key

My keys are more square, hexagonal or heart shaped.
Jan 28, 2016 8:57 AM # 
OK quay :-)
Jan 28, 2016 8:59 AM # 
Jan 28, 2016 10:15 AM # 
Back Story
Minister Duncan Gay really hates cyclists - he describes himself as “the biggest bike-lane sceptic in the government” and has already overseen the removal of the College St bike pat only a few years old and a vital link for any orienteer riding to the SCG from North of the harbour. He also routinely ignores his own departmental advice on cycling issues.

There is an almost-one-issue foundation - the Amy Gillett foundation which has campaigned very hard on "a metre matters". Co-incidentally or not, the board includes Mark Textor. Even UK readers will be familiar with the very effective work of Crosby and Textor with right-wing political parties.

So with one hand we get the "metre matters" legislation, thus satisfying the most effective lobbyist the Libs/Nats have.

With the other hand we get some very punitive fines and the inability to ride up to the shop or down the beach without a license. Unless of course you are aged between 12 and 18, in which case you MUST ride on the road, but don't need photo-id.

It's not clear to me how this will play out - a metre of space is something I can't imagine, many multi-lane roads in Sydney don't give cars that much space (never mind trucks and buses). Its possible that the photo-id requirements will put some people off riding (tourists, civil libertarians, nudists), but I suspect that they will be ignored as much as the anti jaywalking laws.

@Juffy - not sure about how traffic fines work in WA, but over here they are generally more substantial for trucks etc than for cars because of the difference in potential impact. This approach has been discarded for bikes.
Jan 28, 2016 11:13 AM # 
@undy - I have no idea how traffic fines work in WA for cyclists, because the idea of anyone, car or bike, getting pinged for anything other than speeding past a camera is laughable. :)

Still, the four fines they're increasing would seem to be the ones most likely to cause injury to themselves1 or other people - eg. the guy on the Hell Ride in Melbourne who killed a pedestrian after blowing a red light.

1 Leaving aside the endless arguments about helmets...
Jan 28, 2016 11:30 AM # 
The fines are a furphy really. Makes the non cyclists feel better.

The one I don't like or understand is the ID. Most times I cycle in Perth or Western Australia I don't have ID. I take money and a phone and my door key. Why do I have to take my wallet or drivers license?
Jan 28, 2016 11:44 AM # 
In case you get hit by a car?

In SA cyclists are now allowed to ride on the footpath, and on the road drivers must give a metre when passing if the speed limit is under 60m and 1.5 metres if the speed limit is greater than 60. Yes, they are actually allowed to do this by overtaking on a double line!
Jan 28, 2016 12:46 PM # 
The speed limit or the speed the car is traveling?
Jan 28, 2016 12:57 PM # 
I don't normally carry ID when I ride, but I'm pretty adaptable.
Jan 28, 2016 2:07 PM # 
Do streetO competitors need to carry photo ID? I'd imagine they'd cross a lot of trafficked roads while looking down at their pieces of paper.
Jan 28, 2016 2:18 PM # 
Some of us have even run into poles or parked cars...
Jan 28, 2016 9:19 PM # 
In NSW rules of the road are pretty lax
Jan 29, 2016 1:27 AM # 
Just have all cyclists barcoded and be done with it. Problem solved.
Jan 29, 2016 2:26 AM # 
Jenny - I can walk to the shops with cash for some milk and not need to take ID and "might" get knocked over too. It's a very small number of people who would be knocked off their bike, unable to identify themselves and need this law for their safety. I don't think we should be making laws that discriminate against one group of people under the guise of safety when it adds nothing to safety. It's not for my own good - it's to discriminate against people.

And the bike passing laws are not useful either - there is already a road rule that applies, pass when it is safe to do so. That does not mean go over the double yellow line, that means wait.

The 1 - 1.5m passing laws just codify that car drivers can consider bikes a nuisance and break a sensible road rule because "that bike was in my way". Same when you say it's OK to ride on the footpath - it's lazy planning and marginalizes cycling. We should build better infrastructure for bikes and re-look at the road rules in terms of interaction of all road users, not placing such a priority on the car driver in every circumstance and in every location.
Jan 29, 2016 2:31 AM # 
But the car is King, surely?
Jan 29, 2016 2:49 AM # 
And the bike passing laws are not useful either - there is already a road rule that applies, pass when it is safe to do so. That does not mean go over the double yellow line, that means wait.

This was always my problem with minimum-safe-distance laws - the only possible effect is to make 'honest' drivers more afraid to pass ('omg what if I'm only 90cm away?') and asshole drivers hate cyclists for their fancy rules. And they'll only ever be used if a car actually HITS someone, in which case there's already plenty of laws to whack them with.

But every friggin' bicycle advocacy group in the country has been waving the flag for these laws for years, so wtf would I know?
Jan 29, 2016 7:52 AM # 
I think the flag had in small print "We may as well raise awareness that we exist though..."
Jan 30, 2016 3:43 AM # 
ID seems a minor inconvenience to me. If they were really serious number plates would be introduced. No, this is just a form of dog whistling to the bogan vote.
Jan 30, 2016 5:42 AM # 
I really would protest at number plates given that I have six bikes, although only four that I actually use. No way would I pay rego for all of them (or any of them for that matter).

Plus if it's good enough for motorbikes to not have a number plate on the front of the bike due to safety reasons (thus meaning they can generally get away with speeding through multanovas), it's good enough for me to not have one at all.
Jan 31, 2016 3:11 PM # 
Having read this, speaking on behalf of the rest of the planet, I'd just ike to say
" bogan rego furphy pinged key multinova lamington "
thanks for your attention. I feel better now.
Jan 31, 2016 10:28 PM # 
"multanova" isn't even well understood on the other side of the same country (it's Western Australian for a speed camera).
Jan 31, 2016 11:48 PM # 
I thought a multinova was the collective noun for a group of climate change sceptics- cue Blair.
Feb 1, 2016 1:32 AM # 
It's not a multinova; they tend to be singular when encountered in their natural habitat hidden behind a bush (why so many people think they're hidden behind bushes is beyond rational thought - any nature person will tell you that you don't get very good photos of passing wildlife from that vantage point).
Feb 1, 2016 1:43 AM # 
Is this really even a word? I've never heard of such a thing but it's not April 1st and you are all seeming fairly serious about it :)
Feb 1, 2016 1:46 AM # 
Feb 1, 2016 2:37 AM # 
Could somebody translate the rest of that for us foreigners?
Feb 1, 2016 2:47 AM # 
We'll explain our lingo if you can explain the Iowa primary polling.
Feb 1, 2016 3:03 AM # 
Bloody oath.
Feb 1, 2016 3:09 AM # 
The origins of strine
Feb 1, 2016 3:17 AM # 
That can't be right. I don't even know what a Boonie is.
Feb 1, 2016 3:20 AM # 
Melbourne Lord Mayor Robert Doyle proposed bike ban for cyclists on some ‘dangerous’ streets last year in July.
Feb 1, 2016 3:22 AM # 
Strewth, what a cantaloupe.
Feb 1, 2016 3:24 AM # 
Multanova = a cancer on Australian highways, upon which vandalism is almost justified.
Feb 1, 2016 3:45 AM # 
Iowa doesn't have primaries. They have caucuses, and they work differently for the two parties. I'm pretty sure that a substantial fraction of the population of Iowa has no idea how they work.
Feb 1, 2016 3:54 AM # 
But isn't the caucus FOR the primary? I'm so confused. Why can't you people just vote once like regular quasi-democratic oligarchies? :)
Feb 1, 2016 3:59 AM # 
I last week looked up how a primary worked (we have an American at work who was very adamant that Hillary gets in) and my understanding is that you get to vote for who represents your party, as long as you are registered with that party (depending on the type of ballot being held), and once that's decided then later you can vote for who destroys runs the country.

If my understanding is correct, you're going to vote for whichever party you're registered with so why not just count up the number of registrations with a party and put that party into power?

Relating this to the topic, do you have to carry proof of membership with a political party when cycling in Iowa?
Feb 1, 2016 4:01 AM # 
The caucus is instead of a primary, but it has the same purpose, of determining which candidate will get that state's delegates at the party convention in the summer. That's where each party will decide who is actually going to be a candidate in the real election. In some states, you can't participate in the caucus or primary unless you're a registered member of that party. In my state, if you're not registered with any party, you can vote in the primary for either party. (I'm not a member of any party, and really can't imagine myself ever becoming one. That's true for a lot of people.)

(I refuse to answer any question about the US political process that starts with the word "why".)
Feb 1, 2016 4:02 AM # 
But why wouldn't you answer them?
Feb 1, 2016 4:05 AM # 
So basically you have a vote to determine the result of a vote to put up a candidate for a vote?

Hurry up and invent SkyNet already so we can do away with this circus.
Feb 1, 2016 4:07 AM # 
Just wait for the White Smoke - seems to have worked for the Catholic Church for a long time
Feb 1, 2016 4:16 AM # 
Juffy, you can learn everything you need to know about American politics from watching 24. In short, Jack Bauer can stop any terrorist threat to the country in the time it takes to decide the California Presidential Primary and most presidents are assassinated either during or immediately after their term. If not, then they are at least taken hostage or bombed in that time.
Feb 1, 2016 4:50 AM # 
My full knowledge of the US political system is based on The West Wing.
Sorkin always gets it right, yes?
Feb 1, 2016 6:13 AM # 
You could watch Planet America on ABC TV. Would be good if Roy and HG took on US elections - then we would understand it!
Feb 1, 2016 6:37 AM # 
Shame they only do events that the rest of the world cares about.
Feb 1, 2016 8:11 PM # 
As a former sometimes bicycle commuter near a major international airport, I can understand the frustration at some drivers, and at bike paths that have poles in the middle of them (would people accept a car lane that had a pole in the middle of it?). But I also observed that not all bicyclists have good driving behaviors. If they were driving a car, we'd be shaking our heads in dismay. Countless times I'd come upon pedestrians who would instinctively flinch, and then relax when they realized that I was a bicyclist who would slow, wait and give good distance from pedestrians, instead of seeing how close and fast I could brush by. Most drivers would also behave well if I made myself visible, signaled turns, and made eye contact. Then again, a colleague was hit by a car on four occasions while bicycle commuting to work, so I avoided narrow, fast, heavy traffic roads (hard to do in Britain).

Enforcing driving laws on bicyclists as well as car and truck drivers is probably sensible (and IDs might be a necessary part of that). I long wondered why they weren't, and suspect that it's part of bicycling long not being taken seriously. Driving cars and trucks safely around bicyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians should also be enforced (maybe the bicycle equivalent of dashboard cameras would help).
Feb 1, 2016 8:19 PM # 
By the way, from having lived in a few countries, I can say that watching another country's politics is way more fun than watching one's own. One can feel free to chow on the popcorn and laugh heartily, without the feeling that one's forehead should be in one's hands. Bags of cash passed under a restaurant table in brown bags, answering every parliamentary question while pointedly striking a jaunty pose leaning on something that's the wrong height (and having to go back and forth between sitting and jaunty pose between every question), noisy candidate parades down the street bearing a six digit number so that you could be sure you're voting for the right person/party. I can only imagine the deep and frequent belly laughs of others at my country's politics, as my forehead is too firmly in my hands to laugh properly. What a show. Hey, the country of Hollywood.
Feb 1, 2016 10:10 PM # 
I hit a deer at 55 mph in southern Illinois once in 2008--was returning home from SLOC local meet, and a dog on I-65. I did not do bikers though.
Feb 2, 2016 12:28 AM # 
So basically you have a vote to determine the result of a vote to put up a candidate for a vote?

Oh god, it gets worse. Apparently the Republican Iowa caucus is as above. The Democratic version is:
  • a vote
  • to determine the result of a vote
  • to determine the result of a vote
  • to determine the result of a vote
  • to determine who is going to on the ballot for the vote to be president.
Feb 2, 2016 1:26 AM # 
Yurets, which party was the deer running for?
Feb 2, 2016 1:40 AM # 
Don't get to precious about voting systems we have the the Australian senate and we all know how dodgy that has become when Ricky Muir got in with 0.51% of the vote!
Feb 2, 2016 1:48 AM # 
So basically you have a vote to determine the result of a vote to put up a candidate for a vote?

In Colorado, the Republican party doesn't have a caucus (just a straw poll); the state party decides whom to support for the nomination. Democratic party has a caucus, but for Democrats it's not just state primaries and caucuses; there are numerous other delegates, such as from Democrats Abroad, or current Democratic members of Congress, and so forth. State primaries and caucuses send the most delegates, but the other delegates are enough to make a noticeable difference. Very complicated, hence the need for a large campaign organization (at least, to optimize chances of winning).
Feb 2, 2016 2:06 AM # 
One of the key points is that, regardless of whether the process is a caucus or an election, the participants are never voting for the actual candidate -- just the delegates who have pledged to vote for the candidate at the party's national convention.

And don't even get me started on the Electoral College...
Feb 2, 2016 2:33 AM # 
Is that anything like Clown College?
Feb 2, 2016 2:54 AM # 
I view Ricky Muir as an unexpected success of the Hare Clarke voting system. I'd be far more concerned about the Libertarian character who impersonates another party and gets 10 per cent of the vote, proving a substantial number of NSW voters have no bloody idea who they are voting for. In the case of Ricky Muir at least the overwhelming majority of Victorian voters know they didn't vote for him.
Feb 2, 2016 3:06 AM # 
I am not really any the wiser after watching that Senate voting video, probably because I don't have sound available and half of the subtitles were cut off, which I guess makes it a successful parliamentary production in keeping the voters uninformed.
Feb 2, 2016 3:12 AM # 
@tRicky If you watch it later you will become very wise
Feb 2, 2016 3:59 AM # 
Ohhh, the suspense is killing me!!!
Feb 2, 2016 10:04 PM # 
I've been doing some research in Alice...
A caucus race is just like a score event.
There are no rules; all of the participants run haphazardly around in no particular direction and everyone wins.
Then, some while later, you end up with a mad tea party, a Queen is appointed and there are no Trumps.

(Aren't Burny Sanders people who live around Alice?)
Feb 2, 2016 10:42 PM # 
Go ask Alice
Feb 3, 2016 12:14 AM # 
Alice? Who the *#&@ is Alice?
Feb 3, 2016 12:20 AM # 
You should know, after 24 years living next door to her...
Feb 3, 2016 12:59 AM # 
For naive residents of Down-Under. Alice is a local FBI surveillance van.
All you need to do is loudly say "Alice, what is..." and you receive an sms with answer in a minute.
Feb 3, 2016 1:37 AM # 
Is that like Siri except slower?
Feb 3, 2016 4:18 AM # 
Alice Springs?
Feb 3, 2016 4:51 AM # 
Well she's known for being pretty perky in the morning, but it's nothing to write home about.
Mar 2, 2016 4:31 AM # 
New laws started yesterday, and believe it or not a Yank was one of the first to get caught.
Mar 2, 2016 6:11 AM # 
He was yanking the cop's chain.
Mar 2, 2016 7:49 AM # 
I think NSW might get Trumped
Mar 2, 2016 10:21 PM # 
Anyone got pinged the new amount for not having a bell yet ?
Mar 2, 2016 11:29 PM # 
I'd be interested to see how many people got fined for no helmet under the old amount or if the police didn't bother because the fine wasn't worth the effort. I counted only about a half dozen at my count site on Tuesday with no helmets (out of around 750-800). About half of them had helmets but just weren't wearing them because you know, it's the thought that counts.

This discussion thread is closed.