One-metre rule on way for safer cycling
From November 30, all motorists who fail to follow new minimum cyclist safe passing rules could face a $400 fine and a loss of four demerit points.
Announced by State Road Safety Minister Michelle Roberts on October 28, motorists must leave a gap of one metre between their vehicle and a cyclist for any posted speed limit under 60km/h, with 1.5m for posted speed limits over 60km/h.
With the changes, motorists are allowed to briefly cross centre lane markings — including a double white line — to ensure a safe distance, although only when the motorist has a clear view of oncoming traffic.
Ms Roberts said she believed the changes would help cyclists feel more comfortable on WA roads.
“Tragically, seven cyclists have been killed on our roads already this year,” she said.
“Cyclists are among our most vulnerable road users and these new rules are designed to provide greater protection and hopefully reduce the number of serious injuries and deaths.
“These new rules now provide clear guidance about how much room you must leave to safely pass a cyclist.
“It’s about motorists and cyclists showing mutual respect for one another and sharing the roads together safely.”
WestCycle chief executive Matt Fulton said he believed the announcement would be gleefully welcomed in the cycling community.
“It’s been a very long journey to get to this announcement,” he said.
“Three years of advocating, the support of numerous people and organisations such as the Amy Gillett Foundation, Bicycling Western Australia, CycleSportWA, Lynn MacLaren and our other 34 member organisations.
“So to say we are pleased is an understatement.”