Cycle Safety

Home / Cycle Safety

Appearance on SBS News – RIP John Cornish.

Following the death of John Cornish whilst riding his bike within 200 m of the site of my accident SBS ran a news story on bike safety. The circumstances of his death are frighteningly similar to the cause of my accident.

John was an advocate for safe cycling, and it is important that we all take up the mantle to continue his work. It is time for the cycling community to show other road users that they are serious about road safety. In order to gain more rights and respect on the road we must show motorists that we are serious about minimising serious injury and fatalities whilst cycling. The Amy Gillett Foundation has a Road Users Code which is worth a read. It gives a good overview of how to use the road safely as either a cyclist or a motorist.

Appearance on Channel 9 News – Share the Road.

I was interviewed for a story that Channel 9 news was running in early May 2011 with some statistics revealing that cyclists break Road rules. With any segment of the community there will be lawbreakers but nothing changes the consequences of when a cyclist is hit by a motorist whether they are breaking the laws or not. Obviously motorists break the rules as well but the consequences are not as great when a cyclist hits a motorist!

Stateline Article on Cycle Safety.

I appeared in an article on Stateline (ABC television) in Victoria in March 2011.

The same interview but in an extended format was also featured on a program called Contact Sport. You can view it at the following link: ABC TV Contact Sport . The episode was shown on Friday, 22 April and my feature starts 18 min and 10 seconds into the program.

7 PM Project Segment on the Concept of Bicycle Registration

Here is a link to a segment where I was featured that was aired on channel 10 on 3 August 2010.

Bayside Council Meeting 16 February 2010

Monica, I and a friend attended the Bayside Council meeting where one of the items on the agenda was the institution of a no stopping zone in the Council on Beach Road in line with the parking restrictions that are in place in the Kingston Council to the south of Bayside, and the Port Phillip Council to the north of Bayside. My accident occurred in the Bayside Council area and would not have occurred if this parking restriction was in place back in June 2008. I was the first Speaker of the evening and was only given a day’s notice and no time to prepare for the issues that would be discussed around this. I chose to keep my speech very simple and focused on who I was before the accident, the details of the accident and the clear fact that if this parking restriction was in place I would not be a quadriplegic today. There were 28 other speakers and it became a very emotive issue with some speakers having no hesitation in saying that I deserved what had happened to me. The decision of the Council was very close with the chairman having the final say and voting against the parking restrictions. Please read the details of the Bayside City Council Ruling on this issue. This issue has been on the agenda of the Bayside Council for almost 10 years. I am hoping that my involvement can help sway the decision-making process to hopefully prevent at least one other accident like mine.

I encourage you if you live in the Bayside Council area and use Beach Road to ride your bike to write a letter to the council, organise a petition, or attended a Council meeting and speak about your experience using Beach Road and the safety that such a parking restriction would provide during the hours when the most common usage by far of Beach Road is the mode of transport known as a bicycle.

In addition to working with councillors in the Bayside area to describe my story and background I plan to approach the State government to fully understand the nature of the issue and hopefully provide a sensible head in achieving an outcome that will be safer for all users of Beach Road during these hours. As you would understand I have spent a lot of hours on my back in hospital and rehabilitation to think about this issue. I am determined to keep the emotion in this issue to a minimum and work with all bodies involved to end up with a safer cycling facility that will prevent future injuries like mine. A number of the bodies involved are cycling bodies. It is my opinion that in order to get such parking restrictions in place these bodies have a responsibility to improve the behaviour of cyclists and provide education to cyclists who are not familiar with cycling with so many other cyclists around them.

 The Accident

My accident occurred on Beach Road five minutes from my home. I was hit by a truck on my right hand and ricocheted into a parked four-wheel-drive. This accident was no fault of my own on a road that is recognised as a main thoroughfare to cyclists on weekends. That being said, it is my belief that my type of accident could be prevented with improved attitudes from both motorists and cyclists on Australian roads. Since my accident I have presented in a number of forums including the ABC news in December 2009, Background Briefing on Radio National in December and SEN radio here in Melbourne speaking on this issue.

I am hoping that my accident and my resultant condition of quadriplegia will not come to nothing and that I can prevent future accidents occurring in particular in locations such as Beach Road here in Melbourne. I am planning to influence local councils, motorists, and cyclists to respect the road and each other more to utilise facilities for recreational, training and commuting purposes in such a way that accidents such as mine will occur less frequently.

Stay tuned for further updates to this page as I become more involved in bodies and foundations that are already in existence to target this issue.