Cyclists and Walkers Using Roads?

Submitted: Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 11:05
ThreadID: 91193 Views:2999 Replies:13 FollowUps:30
This Thread has been Archived
Hi All,

This question has several parts so please bare with me.

Background: Over the last decade or so there has been an increase in travellers seeing Australia by bicycle and a few crazy campaigners on foot using highways, major roads and other tourist routes. I'm one of those crazy campaigners some of you may have seen on the roads between Melbourne and Newcastle and south of Perth, with and without the trekking cart. Recently a woman, Deborah De Williams - Running Pink, ran around Australia for breast cancer, Sarah Eagle - Walking Feat campaigning for mental health will be on the road from Armidale to Melbourne from mid year and I'll be on the road again from September for depression awareness and suicide prevention. We're just a few road campaigners amongst a growing number of people walking their messages around Australia.

Safety: I speak solely for myself here. I wear bright clothing including hi-vis gear. My cart, and sometimes backpack, have red flashing lights on corners closest to road in overcast weather or low light, brightly coloured and flying a flag or banner. Where ever possible I walk as far off the road without getting bogged or running over posts when traffic is passing. I contact local newspapers and radio and ask them to run a story so local traffic know I'm on the road and why. I do not walk the freeways, motorways and sections prohibiting pedestrians.

Q1. Is that enough? Without saying stay off the roads, How can this be made safer? What safety advise would you have for cyclists and walkers using the roads around Australia?

Q2. Which side of the road is less surprising to find a walker? Which side is easier to pass? As the walker I prefer walking towards the traffic but need to change sides of the road for several reasons - space off the edge, strain of camber on ankles and shade. I think there is also an old depression years piece of legislation recommending walkers use the opposite side of highways and byways. I have found drivers approaching me from behind will pass further across the opposite lane than drivers approaching from ahead.

Q3. Are walking campaigns still effective? Do you notice walkers on the road? Are you inclined to stop and chat to the campaigner, talk about it later or look it up on the internet?

Q4. What is the most effective medium to inform drivers that there is a campaign walker on the road in their region, community radio, papers, other?

Q5. Please be honest answering this one. How do you feel about walkers and cyclist on the highways, major roads and tourist routes? Is it difficult to share the road with them?


Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

Back Expand Un-Read 0 Moderator

Reply By: Notso - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 11:42

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 11:42
This is an interesting topic and if you think about the issues involved there are some major concerns with mixing slow moving traffic with fast moving traffic. Similarly you are mixing protected traffic, Motor Vehicles, with unprotected traffic, Cyclists and Pedestrians.

I see this basically as a recipe for disaster.

One of the major issues is the size of a person on a cycle or walking. If for instance you are driving along and there is a 40 tonne truck and a pedestrian on the road ahead, your eyes are drawn to the largest object, and what we perceive to be the biggest threat to us.

Of course the same applies to motor cyclists to some degree but if they ride with the lights on and use high visibility outer wear this improves the chances of seeing them.

I don't know if it's law but the practical side to walk on is the oncoming vehicle side as these are the closest to you and potentially the most hazardous to your continued good health.

So yes by all means make em wear bright high visibility clothing, yes make em keep off the roads where practicable, but at the end of the day it's not illegal to walk or ride on any of our major roads with the exception of a few motorways.

THis is an extract from the Aust Road Rules

238 Pedestrians travelling along a road (except in or on a
wheeled recreational device or toy)

(1) A pedestrian must not travel along a road if there is a footpath
or nature strip adjacent to the road, unless it is impracticable to
travel on the footpath or nature strip.
Offence provision.
Note Footpath and nature strip are defined in the dictionary.
(2) A pedestrian travelling along a road:
(a) must keep as far to the left or right side of the road as is
practicable; and
(b) must not travel on the road alongside more than 1 other
pedestrian or vehicle travelling on the road in the same
direction as the pedestrian, unless the pedestrian is
overtaking other pedestrians.

AnswerID: 474816

Reply By: Rob! - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 11:55

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 11:55
Q1. I think you are doing more than most. Is it enough? It depends on the situation. Like you said there are many different reasons for the location that you walk and what you wear.

Q2. When walking I usually walk against the traffic so that you can see it coming. But it is eaqsiest to be seen on the outer side of a bend.

Q3. I rarely see campaingners on the road. There are many causes and charities scrambling for everyones' attention so any message quickly fades. I do know a guy who did this on a bike. For me his message stayed with me, but only because I know him. So Iguess the messages have a greater effect on the people directly affected. I find for many campaigners, it is a more about the personal journey rather than simply raising money or awareness.

Q4. All of the ones mentioned, but best to follow up with person to person contact, theough schools, community groups etc.

Q5. there are difficult people in all walks of life, it's only when they meet that there are problems.

Keep it up and good luck

AnswerID: 474819

Reply By: wato35 - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 13:20

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 13:20

Its a tough one, I was a cyclist until my health went down hill. It should be common sense, which is not very common at all these days. Main roads are usually fine to ride on, but when cyclist go on dirt roads with small hills and corners, they are looking for trouble.
Have you ever come over a hill or around a corner to find someone on a bike? As you pass (even at 70k's) thinking to yourself "good thing there was nothing coming from the other way". Usually these roads are narrow, leaving less room to move out of trouble.
Bikes have a place on our roads and I want that to remain the case, but the roads must suit the situation.
Cyclist or walkers need to do so without their bloody ipods on.

That's my 2 Bob.


AnswerID: 474821

Reply By: Hairy (WA) - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 14:37

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 14:37
!st of all good on you for doing your bit for charity/illness.
But to be honest , Im not a big fan of walkers and cyclists on roads. Depending were there are of course, but a lot of the time I think they are dangerous........roads were really designed with motor vehicles in mind not walkers but we could argue that till the cows come home so Ill leave it at that as Its not illegal as far as I know and its a free country........well......thats debateable too.

Q1.I think you do more than most, so good on ya. But the only real way of letting people know would be a vehicle a few hundred meters behind you with flashing lights and signage who can get off the road when vehicles approach. Do you have a mirror so you know when vehiclesare comming up behind you? A truck from each direction will just run you over rather than having a head on.

Q2 I dont think it matters a lot but its a bit hard to have a warning vehicle if your walking into the traffic.

Q3 A warning vehicle.

Q4 Sorry mate.....I know its for a good cause, but I dont think walkers should be allowed and cyclists debateable.

Good luck anyway

AnswerID: 474829

Follow Up By: Hairy (WA) - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 14:52

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 14:52
Sorry....stuffed the numbers up.

Q3. I can only answer for myself, but no, I dont stop, so I also dont donate.
If I bumped into you at a roadside stop that would be different though.
FollowupID: 749767

Follow Up By: Andrew - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 15:56

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 15:56
Interesting statement "roads were really designed with motor vehicles in mind not walkers"

I think we need to remember that many roads were originally walking tracks that got used by other means of transport and gradually taken over by motorised transport. Nowadays the growing assumption seems to be that vehicle users are the only ones with access rights and everything else should get out of the way, unfortunately recent legislation changes have reinforced that point of view.
I am old enough to remember that almost everyone walked to school and on the country roads there were no footpaths. Some kids rode bikes and one or two horses!!

We wonder why kids are unhealthy these days, perhaps frightening them off exercising on the roads is part of the problem.

We need to go back to thinking that the roads are for use by everyone not just those with motorised wheels.


FollowupID: 749770

Follow Up By: Hairy (WA) - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 14:21

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 14:21
Gday ,
I think you might be missing my point a bit A.
True, roads were once tracks and horse and feet were the main mode of transport, but this bloke is talking about doing his walk in 20th century not the 18th or early 19th?

I'm not sure if you've been outside lately but these days people are getting around an mechanical horses called automobiles........gas guzzling unsociable things the are!

I'm not saying you cant walk or ride a horse down the middle of the freeway or nothing ,just suggesting it might not be the safest thing to do.
When engineers design roads these days the corner radius's, cambers, signage and road widths are calculated with the width of automobiles in mind.....not a vehicle overtaking a horse and cart, walker or cyclist.

But you've raised a few good points though.......once my kids and I have dug out the deadly night shade, put a new gate in the back fence, walked the fences and carried out any repairs, moved the horses, vacuumed the pool, cart some water, water the tree's and had a swim......I should send the lazy, unhealthy little buggers out on the highway to play and do a bit of good old fashion healthy exercise!

PS. Personally I think the reason SOME kids are lazy, unhealthy little slobs these days are because their parents are........its easier to sit them down in front of the TV playing computer games than it is to take them outside and entertain them....not because the engineers didn't factor a walking lane down the middle of the freeway....just my opinion.

Dont take this too seriouly.....Im just julling the piss. LOL

FollowupID: 749857

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 14:46

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 14:46
Sheila not "Bloke"

Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749859

Follow Up By: Hairy (WA) - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 15:09

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 15:09
WHOOPS....Sorry Maam. LOL
FollowupID: 749862

Reply By: Motherhen - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 14:51

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 14:51
Hi Terra’Mer

1. Most times I have seen walking campaigners, there have been escort vehicles, flashing lights etc. Perhaps this is the only way to truly stay safe – but imagine the cost. Unfortunately Australian drivers generally expect to have the right to use the road uninterrupted. A great contrast to Bali, where pedestrians amble down the middle of the road as it is their tradition and right, no-one gets impatient or angry.

2. I have always been taught that pedestrians walk on the right side of the road, facing the traffic. You can see what is coming at you and jump in the gutter if it looks that bad.

3. With people going about their business, I would consider it rare for motorists on the open road to stop. In towns the walker, and any support crew if present, will talk to people in the street and this is the main contact.

4. As you will no doubt be walking on major roads, much of it will be through traffic and not related to the local area to know through local media, press, Council or what ever publicity. However the publicity gained for your cause from doing that is a separate issue to road safety. You may even be able to obtain a few volunteers to act as support for you whilst walking through their town.

5. Because of speed of travel, walkers are rarely a traffic obstruction for long, however I am not an impatient driver. Cyclists can be a bit of a hazard, and Murphy says we will come on them quickly without warning, at the base of a hill on a double white line. Option is to pull partially over the line and whizz past, or brake and slow to a crawl up the hill. The former is not an option in the face of an approaching road train. Those who cycle in tandem when there is traffic behind them are annoying.

Is this how you have seen it in the past? Good luck with your latest venture.


Red desert dreaming

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

AnswerID: 474830

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 00:05

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 00:05
Thanks Motherhen, I'm hoping to garner some road support as I go, it would be very helpful.

Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749816

Reply By: kiwicol - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 17:13

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 17:13

From a B-Double drivers point of view i find cyclists on a main h/way, specially some of the windy sections, down right dangerous.

I have had many a discussion with cyclists on this issue, and from their point of view everyone has to give way to them.

Doing a 100kph with 60 odd tonne behind you and coming up on a push bike and another truck coming the other way makes for a very unpleasant situation.
And of course the first to be accused is the trucky. The wind generated when a truck goes by is enormous.

There are some roads we have where in my opinion push bikes should not be allowed, I live FNQ and one of those roads should be the Kuranda Range, bikes should be banned.

Most truckys give warnings to each others by UHF, about hazards ahead, including push bikes.


AnswerID: 474839

Follow Up By: Fatso - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 20:26

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 20:26
In charge of 60 tonne & you totally disregard the most basic safety rule of overtaking.
And you accuse the road user you are overtaking of being dangerous.
FollowupID: 749793

Follow Up By: Teejay - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 21:50

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 21:50
kiwicol, could you possibly entertain the thought of slowing down so the two trucks don't pass right where the cyclist is? It's happened to me when riding and on a narrow bridge but it was a Bus and a Truck. If the bus driver just had have lifted his foot for a moment I would have been clear of the short bridge but no, must put the riders life at risk for the sake of a few seconds. We all have a right to the road whether walking, riding or driving but until this right is respected there will continue to be deaths. As a Cyclist I don't believe everyone has to give way to me. I obey the road rules.
FollowupID: 749798

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 23:40

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 23:40
In a past life i did a lot of hitching and many of my lifts were with truckers and a couple of those trips were across the Nullarbor and as a passenger I saw some near misses with cyclists and the drivers, successfully, did everything possible to slow down and avoid an incident. They did not travel over the speed limit but it takes a long time to slow down a road train. On these trips I also saw cyclists swerving all over the lane or just riding along with about a metre spare on the outside, one even wobbled out in front of the truck I was travelling in just around a bend and took a few seconds to hear the blasting horn behind him. That summer there were 3 cyclist killed on the Nullarbor in road incidents. I've known a few friends who have cycled across from Perth to Melbourne and Adelaide and I was glad they had plenty of road touring/racing experience.
Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749813

Follow Up By: Member - Royce- Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 08:36

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 08:36
Hang on... fair go to kiwicol... he is describing a situation that is common. Two truck travelling in opposite directions approach a cyclist.

Sure, you slow down and try to make the pass as safe as possible, but often there is no choice. The bike appears or the road narrows, or it's on a bend.

Driving a big rig you can't just slow and speed up in a few metres. There is a lot of physics at work. See a bike 200 m ahead, ease off on the accelerator, tap the brake or let the engine brakes come into play while you take into consideration the location of the bike, the speed the oncoming truck is doing, the vegetation, signs, traffic behind you, road surface, load, light, cyclist behaviour and how you will regain your lost momentum... easy.

I drive trucks, and cycle..... we all need to be very careful. The biggest defence a cyclist has is his/her ears. Big truck? Ease off the road if you can.
FollowupID: 749830

Follow Up By: kiwicol - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 08:39

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 08:39
Fatso, so tell me what is the most basic rule of overtaking in the situation i stated. You cant just pull these vehicles up on a dime. Alot of our roads are the same width of a truck, add the cyclist the metre or so for safe overtaking and now your on the other side of the road over the double white line with another truck coming straight at you, please tell me how to deal with this situation.

FollowupID: 749831

Follow Up By: kiwicol - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 08:57

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 08:57
Teejay, yes you are right about slowing down, but you have to remember the time it takes to wash off speed on heavy vehicles takes time, when you come upon a cyclist its not always in a situation where the cyclist has been seen half a k up the road, sometimes its on blind corners or the cyclist is hidden by a vehicle in front.

The incident you were involved in, maybe the vehicle coming towards you didn't see you to be able to take the actions needed. The bus may have been full of passengers, and to take serious action could have injured passengers on board, these are some of the decisions heavy transport drivers have to take on board when a cyclist is suddenly in front of them, its not as easy as just slowing down.

FollowupID: 749832

Follow Up By: Fatso - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 13:08

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 13:08
Do not overtake unless safe.
FollowupID: 749853

Follow Up By: Fatso - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 13:12

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 13:12
That is an obligation on the person overtaking.
Your ignorance is the reason it is so dangerous to ride a bike.
Hit from behind is the biggest cause of fatalities for cyclists.
Hit by drivers who did not follow the most basic of overtaking safety rules.
"Do not proceed until safe" is probably the foundation statement of road safety.
FollowupID: 749854

Follow Up By: kiwicol - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 15:20

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 15:20
So do tell me what i should do in the situation i stated above, obviously you don't understand the laws of physics, you cannot pull a truck up doing 100kph in 50 metres.

Sometimes the law doesn't exactly fit every situation, and you have to use your skills in dealing with the situation at hand in split second timing.

Your statement says to me that you have never driven a B-Double, yet your very quick at telling an operator what to do.

The skills of most operators of heavy machinery is what saves a lot of lives of push bike riders, no matter what a push bike rider may say.

FollowupID: 749866

Follow Up By: Hairy (WA) - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 16:13

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 16:13
If I was to drive my car along an open road at 10kmh I would be booked for obstructing traffic wouldnt I? Whats the difference of a cyclist doing it?
FollowupID: 749870

Follow Up By: Hairy (WA) - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 16:28

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 16:28
I should have added being right doesnt help you when your dead.
The simple fact is, if Im driving along and a cyclist pops up and there is another truck comming, and I know Im not going to stop in time, I move over as far as I can, leaving just enough room for the other truck and hope like hell the cyclist doesnt get sucked underneath! If it does he fault? Yes. The cyclist had full right to be on the road and so did I.......maybe just not at the same time I guess.......and maybe I should have been travelling at 10kmh too so I could stop in time?
But Im alive and he's dead.....being in the right didnt help him hey? Ya got to be realistic.

FollowupID: 749873

Follow Up By: Rockape - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 19:13

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 19:13
Col and Fatso,
Me thinks you are talking about 2 different things,

Col is talking about passing of 2 heavy in different directions and Fatso is talking about 2 heavy vehicles overtaking each other.

Have a good one and some of the things I have seen walkers and bike riders do on the road makes my spine quiver. Col would know you get walkers in the middle of nowwhere and the middle of the night walking along the edge of the road.

FollowupID: 749882

Follow Up By: Fatso - Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 22:12

Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 22:12
I tell you what kiwicol. The more you write the stupider you look.
I think you should do yourself a favour & go and enrol in one of Peter Rogenkamps safe driving courses. I assume you know who he is as you come from the North. It may save the life of someone's offspring & you a lot of grief.
I will start again & hopefully I can get through to some of you.
Kiwicol, if you are required to pull your 60 tonne vehicle up in 50 yards you are obviously travelling way to fast for the situation. Drive to the conditions is something you see repeated over & over on this forum.
You are driving 60 tonne down the road. For Christ's sake & the sake of all parents smarten the f--k up & use your brains to adjust to the situation that is in front of you.
Your idiotic statement of truck drivers saving pushbike riders is absolutely BS. It is just victim bashing. 85% of cyclists killed on Australian roads are hit from behind.
That means they were hit by an overtaking vehicle.
Just like the boy riding home from work 200 yards from home on the Aumuller & Scott roundabout that had a B double drag his back wheels over him.
Go around & tell his parents how truck drivers save cyclists lives.
This goes back to the most basic safety rule of overtaking. Do not overtake until safe.
Do you understand what I am trying to explain.
It is an obligation on the person overtaking to not attempt to do so until safe.
It is not the obligation of slower road users to get out of the way.
That is totally indisputable.
Rockape, I meant when overtaking all road users.
Hairy, for the first question, different user groups have specific rules & everyone has common rules. There are several cyclist related laws that don't apply to other road user groups. To name a few off the top of my head, cyclists can, travel on the area adjacent the road, overtake on the left at any time except when the vehicle in front is turning left, ride 2 abreast on the road & in Qld ride on a footpath that does not display a sign prohibiting so.
For the second half Hairy, I am an operator too. I even have operator accreditation & a couple of million km under my belt. Not on the open highway either, but nearly all in the built up area. I tell myself these things all of the time. I reckon self assessment & the willingness to admit to my faults helped me drive that far with only allowing 1 idiot to hit me. It took 20 years & about 1.5 million km before I had my first and only accident.

I got cut off today by one of your redneck lifesaving cowboy mates driving an NQX B Double just North of Fishery Falls on the passing lane Kiwicol. He had been behind me all the way from Innisfail in traffic that was plugging along at close to the speed limit. He pulled out to pass with less than 100 yards of the passing lane left. I was doing over 90 & had to brake down to about 40 or go bush.
His cab was beside me & we were at the point where the 2 lanes merged.
F--k knows what this lifesaver was thinking.
There was absolutely no way he was passing without me taking action to avoid an accident.
He had committed himself & in the wet conditions he couldn't pull up either.
I suppose somehow in some weird psychotic type of mental thought you could say that this was my fault for being in front of him.
Not that he should not have overtaken because it was not safe.
He got 1 car closer to Cairns.
Ah, willing to kill to get 1 car closer.
I followed him all the way to Edmonton where I changed lanes & moved away ahead of him in traffic.

Today is not a good day to talk to Fatso about trucks & safe overtaking.

I hope you blokes stay safe on the roads.

I heard a lady on the 2 way on the way home from Mx racing in Mackay a couple years back. There was the same block of vehicles in CB range from Mackay to Townsville. Conditions were poor to say the least. By the next day the Bruce Highway was cut in several places.
Near Townsville this lady gives a truckie a real blast on the radio for cutting her off. Then the truckie & a couple of his mates brush her off with sarcasm.
Her response changed my driving style. I probably can't repeat exactly what she said , but I hope everyone gets the intent.

She said, If you continue to drive in the way you are driving you will undoubtedly kill someone one day. When you kill someone they will be someone's son or daughter, father or mother or brother or sister. They will be someone who is loved & cherished by someone. How will you reflect on that?

I never heard another one of those truckies speak on the radio all the way to Cairns.

FollowupID: 749989

Follow Up By: kiwicol - Monday, Jan 16, 2012 at 10:42

Monday, Jan 16, 2012 at 10:42
Well Fatso, obviously you cant read either. You haven't explained to me what i should do in the situation i stated above. I also stated most drivers, not all.

You stated about the cyclist caught under the semi on the round about, your pretty quick to blame the trucky, not saying it was not his fault, but it could have been the cyclists fault as well. How many cyclists have you seen travelling the roads and wondering all over the place.

We all know there are idiots driving all manner of vehicles throughout Australia, but sometimes common sense prevails, I live on the tablelands and have followed groups of cyclists travelling in 2 and 3 wide with 20 odd cars lined up behind them as they couldn't get past. The cyclists had no consideration for any body else, this situation went on for quite a time.

I would say in your cut off incident you had been travelling well below the speed limit and holding up traffic for quite a distance, the trucky may not have been right, but the law states the person in the left lane has to give way to overtaking vehicles before merging.

You are right about the law stating they can ride 2 abreast but on a lot of roads that is just plain stupid and un safe. The cyclist has a duty of care, as has a driver for fellow road users.

All i ask from you Fatso is to answer my question to the situation i posted in a previous post.

I have over 30 yrs of operating heavy trucks and machinery, and have not had an accident that was my fault.

All your answers have been specific, in my opinion most h/way roads are not suitable for both cyclists and general traffic.

Your answers to a lot of situations are plain out right stupid, saying a driver in a 100 zone doing the speed limit coming around a blind corner to see a cyclist taking up a fair portion of the road is not driving to the conditions. Now who is showing their ignorance.

Nothing you have said has any foundation, so in saying that there is no way you will get through to me.

There is nothing more you can say but answer the post above, which you have been stepping around.

Something i have learnt in life, just because some one doesn't agree with your point of view there is no need to get into abusive name calling, i leave that to the politicians.

And yes i have done several safety courses, and paid big dollars to be trained to operate B/Doubles and road trains, and all of those courses include travelling with push bikes, and when travelling slower than main stream traffic to pull over when safe and let other traffic through. So please tell me your training

FollowupID: 750018

Reply By: Member - Old Girl - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 17:29

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 17:29
Q2. I walk toward the traffic and watch the driver. I am therefore able to move off the road when traffic comes. We live in a rural town so not many paths around to do the daily hike.
I do think they should get out of the way when larger vehicles are about. Its bad enough to keep a larger vehicle on these crumbling potholed roads with out a push bike in the way.
AnswerID: 474841

Follow Up By: p_marns - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 22:33

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 22:33
I agree Old girl, Out west where the roads are very narrow the road trains and semi s have right away, even the cars have to get right off the road, so for god sake walk against traffic so you can see them coming and get out of the way. Same should apply to push bikes.
FollowupID: 749803

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 00:03

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 00:03
Yes, I've seen this, not experienced it yet though. The other danger too is a cyclist or walker being concealed in the dust so following traffic can't see them and vice versa, like in your picture Old Girl.
Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749815

Reply By: MEMBER - Darian, SA - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 18:12

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 18:12
Q1. With a Hi Vis vest and flashing bike lights front and rear, I can't see you doing much more to be noticed - I'm into fitness cycling in my local region - have recently ordered some new flashing lights for both of my bikes - Smart brand - very intense single LED lensed flashers - about $35 each, but they can be seen a very long way away.

Q2. I'd rather see the walker moving against the traffic - that way I know they are getting a good view of what's happening close to them.

Q3. We just usually wave and keep going unless its remote and/or hot - we then try and check if they need any supplies (presuming we have a spot to pull over).

Q4. Mostly, the media wouldn't work in our case - we just need to see the walker in advance if possible, when touring.

Q5. I don't mind them, but I do hope they keep safety margins for passing vehicles foremost in their thoughts - if a "situation" develops, we tourists often have scant time and minimal safe zones to move the rig into.

Have a great walk ! Don't forget the blister tape :-o).
AnswerID: 474846

Reply By: Fatso - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 20:30

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 20:30
Good on you Terra
In Qld walking on the left hand side of the road can attract a $40 fine.
I think it has been illegal here for many years.
AnswerID: 474852

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 23:54

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 23:54
I will keep that in mind and restrict my crossing to the left for the quiet roads. The camber off the shoulder and in the gutter can really kill the ankles after a while so I switch sides from time to time, also for shade on those very hot days where the bitumen temp is over 55C. I imagine (hope) a cop would let me off with a warning if I was to walk on the left where there was no room to walk on the right. I have fine tuned my hearing so I can tell how many vehicles are coming, from which direction, type of vehicle, even the make/model/brand of tyre, on a variety of road surfaces, a survival instinct I think.
Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749814

Follow Up By: Rockape - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 13:07

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 13:07
Here is what the road rules in QLD state.

238 Pedestrians travelling along a road (except in or on a
wheeled recreational device or toy)
(1) A pedestrian must not travel along a road if there is a footpath
or nature strip adjacent to the road, unless it is impracticable
to travel on the footpath or nature strip.
Maximum penalty—20 penalty units.
(2) A pedestrian travelling along a road—
(a) must keep as far to the left or right side of the road as is
practicable; and
(ab) must, when moving forward, face approaching traffic
that is moving in the direction opposite to which the
pedestrian is travelling, unless it is impracticable to do
so; and
(b) must not travel on the road alongside more than 1 other
pedestrian or vehicle travelling on the road in the same
direction as the pedestrian, unless the pedestrian is
overtaking other pedestrians.

this may help you,

url=]QLd assistance for walkers[/url]

FollowupID: 749852

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 14:53

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 14:53
Thanks Rockape,

Just copied that over to my facebook campaign page and shall apply these rules to all states - only makes sense

Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749860

Reply By: Member - Terra'Mer - Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 23:44

Friday, Jan 13, 2012 at 23:44
Great feedback Everyone! I'm taking notes so keep it coming : )

Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

AnswerID: 474870

Reply By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 18:12

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 18:12
Common sense is all that is needed by all parties.. AS we say here in NSW "The road is there to share".. What we dont need is more rules and regulations that are not enforceable..... Michael
Patrol 4.2TDi 2003

Retired 2016 and now Out and About!

Somewhere you want to explore ? There is no time like the present.

My Profile  My Blog  My Position  Send Message

AnswerID: 474908

Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 21:56

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 21:56
I ride a bike to work every day.
I ride on weekends for the fun of it.
I sometimes ride on holidays - just spent 3 weeks cycling in Vietnam.
And I own a Landcruiser!

But we all have to work together to make cycling/walking/driving safe.
Many cyclists get killed and injured. But they need to look after themselves - make themselves clearly visible with fluoro tops and LED lights; be aware of the traffic and keep out of the way of vehicles.

I have to say i would never ride on an Australian Highway - it way too dangerous because of the speeds involved. In Vietnam, the cyclists and motorbikes have to deal with huge volumes of traffic on really bad roads, but they don't have attitude - they just get out of the way of one another, they use their common sense rather than a set of road reasonably well over there.

And our cities need to become more bike friendly - Adelaide is not bad - I spend most of my time on dedicated bike/walking tracks such as Linear park and along the beaches. Spent last weekend in sydney - couldn't imagine riding a bike there!
AnswerID: 474928

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 22:41

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 22:41
Thanks Phil,
Cycling Vietnam is on my bucket list. Did you go through a company?

Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749912

Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 22:50

Saturday, Jan 14, 2012 at 22:50
Gday Terra,
The trip was thru Peregrine. Very well organised and supported - very good Vietnamese guide, support bus, support truck and a bike mechanic went with the 10 participants. Took us through many of the magic country areas where the tourists don't venture. Vietnamese people were warm and welcoming. The history was interesting and at times sobering. Would recommend this trip. One of our daughters did it 12 months earlier and recommended it to us. Peregrine supplied everything - the bikes were Trek 21 speed MTBs.

A few hints - don't bother with Vietnamese wine - the Dalat Red and Dalat whilte are a lot worse than Dan Murphy's Bowlers Run....but the food and coffee are great. the Beer's not bad.
FollowupID: 749913

Reply By: The Bantam - Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 12:26

Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 12:26
There are some real and unavoudable issues with walkers, cyclists and any other vehicle that is not travling at the prevailing road/highway speed.

I used to be a cyclist, back before bike paths, bike lanes, compulsory helmets and the current alternative greenie bike culture.
I mixed it elbow to door handle with cars trucks and busses in city traffic and on ocasion on the open road.

Firts lets debunk the myth that roads were originally for foot, cart, horses or bike trafic.

In this country, most of the highways and roads did not exist before the motor vehicle.
Most highways and other 100KPH roads were built with no consideration for non high speed motor vehicle traffic.

Now this thread is not talking about a kid riding his bike to school, we are talking about long distance touring on open higways.

We have a growing attitude from the anti automotive minority, cyclists in particular, pushing their "rights" to the road and sprouting road rules to support their case.

Frankly most motorists think cyclists and walkers don't belong on the road, but worse there is a monority that are far more agressive than that, there are idiots that will intentionaly try to run you off the road...BECAUSE..they don't believe you belong there.

There was a high level athlete killed down the coast a few years ago, they think he was intentionaly run off the road...never proven or got any further.

Sorry cyclists, sorry walkers...GET OFF THE HIGHWAY OR DIE.

Regardles of the intentents of the motorist or the trucky, you are doing an incredibly dangerous thing traveling at very low speeds on high speed roads and highways, that were not designed to accomodate you.

In most of our suburban freeways and innercity expressways, cyclists and pedestrians ( and other slow stuff) are specificaly is my belief that this should extend to all highway roads and other roads above 80Kph speed limits.

It is an issue of incompatable speeds.........where ever there is a large vehicle traveling at 100Kph (or similar) and there is another vehicle or person traveling at a very much slower speed and there is inadequate seperation........a very dangerous situation exists.......and nothing will adequately change that.

Now the standard lane width in Australia is 3 meters, the maximum permisable registered vehicle width is 2.5 meters, this does not include mirrors.
There are many vehicles on our road that push the envelope on the 2.5 meter limit, in particular busses & coaches, carvans, boats and of course trucks.

that leaves 250mm ( 10 inches) ( the width of a bike helmet) each side if the vehicle.

I drive a short wheel base, heavy rigid tipper, mostly arround town, let me tell you it requires my full attention to keep that vehicle centred within the lane.
A driver with a much longer articulated combination or a multi-combination is working much harder to do the same.

Look at how any of the heavy combinations track on less than ideal highway and you will see that while the prime-mover may be centered in the lane the back of even the first trailer is using all the lane..get to the back of a b double or worse the back of a road train and that whole 3 meters is definitely all used up.

Yes there may be a sealed or unsealed shoulder, that is not intended for pedestrians or cyclists, that is there as a safety margin, and heavy vehicles will encrouch on to that on every highway every day for one reason or the other.

Now consider you have two heavy combinations approaching each other on a typical two lane undivided highway, as is so common in this country, at 100Kph.

Their main priority is to not hit each other, because that would mean certain death for both drivers, and the wreck could take out a half a dozen other vehicles possibly killing many people in the process.

So we have a cyclist, pushing their luck riding along the sealed verge..sorry mate you are out of luck.........The truckie may not even know that he hit you.
AND when it comes down to it, its you or him...AND his mate comming the other way.

Because of the above incompatabilities, there have been a string of fatalities and serious injuries.......A series of on road accidents has dogged our olympic cycling team and the triathlon/ironman community.

Sorry but if you think you can raise funds, by creating a dangerous wont be getting any funds from me.

NOW to off the highway, people walking along 4wd tracks is becomming a real problem.

My wife is a serious walker, she has walked the UK end to end, up down and sideways, and has done a few walks here and in NZ.

Unlike overseas there is no pre-existing, constitutoinaly enshrined nationwide walking system, so people often try to walk on the a country with an over whelming automotive culture, on roads that where never walking tracks.

I am surprised that we have not seen fatalities, Fraser island bristles with 4wd's all year round, many of the drivers they come arround a corner at a respectable speed ( keeping up momentum on the sand) and there is a walker straight in front of em.....

Sorry but you can bleat about your rights and the road rules all you like, but the unpleasant reality is just that, and nothing will change it.

AnswerID: 474953

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 16:40

Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 16:40
Thanks for your feedback Bantam. Very well articulated

Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749953

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 17:36

Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 17:36
Just a couple more thaughts.

More and more our two line non divided highways have a narrow hard shoulder and a continuous white line to marked the left hand boundry.

This will generally be arround 3 meters from the centre line.....the hard sholder will generally be arround 600mm 2 feet........

There is an ongoing campaign to bring all main roads up to at least this this "minimum standard" will be ongoing for decades yet.

I measure arround 500mm across my sholders with my hands by my sides.......the handle bars on my wifes bike measure 630mm.

getting an idea of how much room there is.


there are still plenty of "minor highways" that have no hard shoulder and no white boundry line......HMMM.....why no boundry line ......possibley because there is not enough hard road surface to mark a line on 3 meters away from the centre line......HMMMM

some of these roads there is a significant drop off and various pot holes on the dirt sholder directly adjacent to the hard surface.

This tells us that vehicles regularly stray off the hard surface.

There are known issues with full sized vehicles stepping off these edges and trying to get back on at high speed......vehicles frequenlty sustain damage people are regularly injured and sometimes killed.....this is without the complication of cyclists and pedestrians.

OH...then there are the bridges.....I don't know about other states, but there are plenty of bridges on highway 1 heading north that have the white ( 3 meter line) right next to the bridge railing or the white line stops before and starts after the bridge......YIKES...6 meters rail to rail and nowhere to go.

I have seen cyclists riding the hard shoulder or the boundry line on the highways in north QLD.....I just have to shake my head....Y'd have to be either keen or despirate.

Last couple of trips north I have seen people cycling the Mulbrough stretch......hell thats a god forsaken 350KM in round figures Rocky to Mackay.....even if you shorten it up Yamba to Sarina, thats still a fair step and only 2 service stations in between.......and that would be one of the fastest sections of road in the state...I've been doing 110K and been passed like I was standing still........people get killed there in cars........look for the crosses and look for the dead skippies............y'd have to be nuts.

FollowupID: 749962

Follow Up By: Member - Terra'Mer - Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 20:23

Sunday, Jan 15, 2012 at 20:23
I know what you mean about those bridges.
When I've had to walk across the ones without paths I wait until I can hear no traffic and run.
My last trek cart was about 650mm and it was too wide, too dangerous so my next cart I'm building to have a maximum width outside the wheels less than 500mm. The tubes are solid so I can push the cart into the bush and over thorns without worrying about punctures, meaning I have the advantage of getting further off the road.
You might find yourself passing me numerous times as I slowly walk down the east coast and I'll gradually drive you nuts ;) Then you'll be in good company!
Just kidding with you, but I'll be the safest and most courteous walker you pass.

Have you seen my marbles?

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 749974

Sponsored Links