Minimum Safe Passing Distance Petition

The metallic blue Subaru swooshed pass me with only centimetres to spare. I was only 5km away from home and was shaken. The tuned car had a big WRX sticker and tinted windows.

500 m further down the road was a red traffic light and when I rolled alongside the stationary car that had almost taken me out, I swallowed hard before knocking at the passenger window, fully arming myself against an argument with a young male driver.

The window came down and gave way to a puppy bed and a little dog on the passenger seat. At the steering wheel was an elderly lady, done up to the ninth with freshly coiffered head, full make-up and bright red lipstick on the pursed and thinning lips.

She looked just as surprised and curious as I must have looked. Politely I described how she had scared me to bits and how dangerously close I had come to crashing. A concerned and deeply sorry face almost made me regret my colourful description. She launched into long and sincere apologies. She hadn’t noticed me, was probably distracted by her puppy.

While this little true story illustrates that not every close passing car is driven by a hooning or malicious driver – even if the type of car initially suggests that – it is an every day reality that if a motorist overtakes another road user really closely and a cyclist gets hurt, the driver didn’t even breach any road rules.

This blog is not dedicated to cycling advocacy but I still wanted to put it out there that there is new Minimum Safe Passing Distance Petition.

http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/work-of-assembly/petitions/e-petition?PetNum=2109

So if you want to make Queensland roads safer for you, your family, friends and all cyclists out there, put your name to it!

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7 Comments

Filed under Cycling advocacy

7 responses to “Minimum Safe Passing Distance Petition

  1. Bless you for spreading the word. My son is a road designer (of all things!) and he often says he wishes we had a different hobby, because he can only do so much. I am a cycling advocate and if we succeed I will be pushing for the education that enhances the legislation.

  2. Here in Europe , it is SUPPOSED TO BE 1 1/2 m passing ANYTHING ! Guess what , most drivers can’t see past their nose , so many too close a shave .

    Over the past season i have made a habit of following delivery vehicles to their next client and letting their Client know , how close they were to putting me in harm’s way and thus delaying their delivery/pickup . Works a treat , both parties become aware of their responsibilities .

    Glad to see you pluck up the courage to remind that driver of their responsibility . Too many drivers can be seen shuffling paperwork , cell phone jammed in the ear , smoking & eating with the other hand . at a guess , the steering wheel is then controlled by the knee ?

    Having walked the Lamingtons in the 2000 visit , i am looking at riding it when i get to Oz , later this year . Meanwhile , looking forward to a few days in Corsica at the start of the 100th edition .

  3. Andy in Germany

    Most of the time drivers aren’t too bad here, certainly better than in the UK where I grew up, but there are still far too many who nearly leave their wing mirror on my handlebars. I have learned to ride defensively and take the lane, but that only works for stroppy, confident, and probably mostly male riders like me, it is hardly a way to get children and old people cycling…

    • Fully agree. That’s why I support the petition. We have a long way to go here in Oz. Drivers here are not as courteous and patient as we experienced drivers in Germany, France or Italy.

  4. I just came across you on Strava Sandra, and your blog here. Your post made me feel like sharing what happened to us on Saturday. We came upon an accident on the descent of Nufenen Pass, 2 motorcyclists had been killed in the crash and the first thing my boyfriend thought was that they must have been two of those crazy motorcyclists on a high speed descent. We read yesterday that they were a couple and had been knocked off their motorbikes by a cable that was hanging low across the road. Its sometimes hard to keep an open mind – currently reading http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thinking,_Fast_and_Slow

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