Checking cycle safety

Tauranga cyclists are encouraged to be safe, be bright and be seen in an effort to reduce accidents and increase cycle safety awareness as part of the national ‘Be Bright’ campaign.

Cyclists are encouraged to be safe and seen on the road. Photo: file.

Bike Wise, NZ Police and Travel Safe are promoting the use of lights and high-visibility clothing in order to reduce risks to cyclists during low-light periods at dawn and dusk, or in poor weather. 

As part of the campaign, roadside checkpoints will be in place across Tauranga during the next few months, with the next checkpoint on May 14 at Matapihi Rail Bridge.

Travel Safe and police will be assessing reflective gear and lights – and those who have adequate lights will be rewarded with free reflective gear. Cyclists who do not have adequate lights will be given lights to attach to their bikes.

Western Bay of Plenty road policing manager Senior Sergeant Ian Campion says although road safety is important to everyone, cyclists are quite vulnerable in the traffic environment.

“They [cyclists] have a responsibility to make sure they operate safety.

“All other road users have to also accept that there is a place for cyclists on our roading network and to treat them with consideration.”

To keep safe on the roads, Ian says all cyclists must wear a helmet and use the cycle lanes provided. Before heading out on the bike, cyclists need to first make sure their bicycle is roadworthy.

All bikes must be equipped with good brakes, a red or yellow rare reflector visible from 100 metres fitted to the front and back of the bike, as well as pedal reflectors.

High visibility clothing should be worn, including reflectorised equipment for any bags the cyclist may be carrying.

“With the shrinking daylight hours, we want to make sure those cyclists operating after the hours of darkness are visible,” says Ian, who says cyclists may also like to keep a bicycle repair kit or pump handy, as well as spare batteries for bike lights.

Tauranga City Council’s Travel Safe programme leader Karen Smith says wearing bright, reflective and high-visibility clothing and using bike lights are simple ways for cyclists to improve their visibility.

“Cyclists’ visibility to other road users, especially during times of low light, is an essential part of cycle safety.”

Workplaces and community centres are encouraged to take part in the campaign too. 

Cycle safety packs can be requested from TCC’s Travel Safe team on 07 577 7000.

All cyclists stopped and surveyed at checkpoints go in a draw to win one of four Avanti high-visibility jackets worth $150 each.

Roadside checkpoint locations are:

May 14            Matapihi Rail Bridge – City end                     4.30-5.30pm

May 19            Papamoa – Maranui St - after Sunrise Ave    4.30-5.30pm

May 21            Cameron Rd – by hospital                              4.30-5.30pm

May 28            Turret Rd – before the bridge                                    4.30-5.30pm

June 9              Chapel St – both sides – Otumoetai end        4.30-5.30pm

Checkpoints will not operate if the weather is bad.


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