28 November 2009

European Cyclists Federation Road Safety Action Plan

Copenhagen Signals
The European Cyclists' Federation - one of Copenhagenize.com's heroes - published their position paper in response to the European Union's Road Safety Action Programme 2011-2020 today.

"We want to underline the fact that unsafe traffic conditions and the individual perception that it is not safe to travel do limit people in their mobility or in their choice of transport mode. This is in particular true for "unprotected" (pedestrians, cyclists) and vulnerable road users (children, elderly).These fears need to be tackled. There is good evidence to support the idea that cycling gets safer the more people do it. This is called the “Safety in Numbers” principle."

The position paper covers a host of subjects. Among them:
- Safety in Numbers
- Blind Spot Mirrors and Detection Systems
- Safe car fronts and external airbags
- Intelligent Speed Adaptation
- Daytime Running Lights
- Cycle lights policy
- Road Safety principles

The entire position paper is available as a .pdf here.


Karl McCracken (twitter: @karlonsea) said...

Copenhagenize.com seemed to me to start out as a more generalist photojournalism version of CopenhagenCycleChic.com. Fascinating to look at, but a bit "so what?"

Over the last few months though, you've posted more of this kind of campaigning stuff (starting with exposing the F.U.D. around helmets), and I've got to say that I LIKE IT.

So please, keep it up. But keep showing us images of life in one of the world's cycling capitals - I need regular doses of an alternate reality to keep me sane!

Mikael said...

Thanks Karl. appreciate the feedback from you.

but the 'so what?' went to more in depth stuff and you're glad, but now you miss the 'so what?' :-)

but thanks for the heads up, I'll try to accomodate your special needs. :-)

cheers, mate.

Dr PM said...

Hi Mikael,

Wonderful blog, thank you.

Here in Australia we have some frustrating compulsory helmet laws which, despite no evidence suggesting they improve safety, have actually driven cyclists off the street. The 'cyclists' we end up with are only the sport cyclists who dress & cycle as if they're training for the Tour de France! I think the helmets make some of them feel invincible!

Nobody cycles for fun or utility here anymore and it is very sad.

Children here are taught that cycling is dangerous and therefore cyclists need to wear helmets & high-visibility outfits, etc to protect them.

What we need is better infrastructure, more encouragement and eduction not draconian laws & fear campaigns. With Peak Oil breathing down our necks were are all going to be cycling more in the future.

There are other health issues as a result of all this avoidance of cycling. I found a very interesting video on YouTube about an Australian doctor talking about these issues. I am also an Australian doctor (although not a General Practitioner) and I have concerns over the way cycling is portrayed here. People barely get any exercise and we have a serious health epidemic unfolding before us.

Here is the link

Admittedly here in Brisbane, things are improving slowly and our bikeways are starting to join up - hooray!

We are also going to see bicycle hire schemes unroll here in Brisbane next year and I fear that they will fail because helmet laws are compulsory. What tourist (or local) is going to go searching for a helmet shop if they want to ride a bicycle 5km along the river... on bikepaths! I think the law should give us the choice to wear helmets if we choose, especially on bicycle paths away from cars.


Brisbane Australia

Karl McCracken (twitter: @karlonsea) said...

Ha ha ha!

I guess I'm just one of those guys who wants to have his cake and eat it.

The "so what" stuff is great to look at and a real tonic for those of us not so lucky . . . and the more in depth stuff probably speaks more of the causes of all this glorious scenery, along with pointing out that there are people who threaten that which many Copenhageners probably take for granted.

Melbourne Cyclist said...

Dr PM - I agree with a lot of what you say, especially the bit about needing more infrastructure, but I have to disagree a little bit with "Nobody cycles for fun or utility here anymore and it is very sad." - I'm still on my bike! :-)

Numbers in Melbourne seem to be going up slowly, and in particular cyclechic cyclists seem to be increasing in number to the point of visibility, but we're still a very small number of people. And of course the Cadel Evans wannabes are still visible.

I'm glad there are people like you, i.e. qualified medics, talking about this though - I figure that comparing the costs of obesity to the costs of infrastructure will result in a win for cyclists!

Anonymous said...

According to a survey released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, fewer Americans are drinking and driving, but one in six drivers are driving while on drugs during the weekend. The data was released on Monday from a survey conducted in 2007....