Call to fix cycle blackspot

Travis Deane is urging the State Government to fix a section of the bike path where he was recently injured in a collision with another cyclist. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d403022
Travis Deane is urging the State Government to fix a section of the bike path where he was recently injured in a collision with another cyclist. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d403022

Mr Deane had a head-on collision with a fellow cyclist at the Graham Farmer Freeway underpass in May, breaking his wrist and two fingers.

It occurred one year after he identified the site as dangerous on the Greens Bike Blackspot iPhone app, which allows cyclists to log unsafe locations on a map.

‘I’m frustrated ” anybody who rides a bike would quickly see this is a definite blackspot that needs to be fixed,’ Mr Deane said.

‘There isn’t really anywhere else where I ride that puts cyclists at that much of a risk. You have riders travelling at speed, all of a sudden appearing out of nowhere. This was an accident caused by bad design.’

Mr Deane suggested several solutions to make the site safer, including installing mirrors and changing the wall height for better visibility.

‘The government has engineered the problem, they need to engineer the solution,’ he said.

‘I also question Transport Minister Troy Buswell whether our infrastructure is designed to cope for the amount of traffic we have.’

Perth Greens candidate Jonathan Hallett is also calling on the State Government to improve the overall Perth bike system.

‘Fixing this problem doesn’t require a huge amount of the budget ” a mirror would take care of the blind spot,’ he said.

‘This issue is symptomatic of a broader neglect around maintenance of bike networks; we’ve got a 1996 bike plan that’s still not finished.

‘A 2011 RAC survey says 57 per cent of people think the cycle network in Perth is average or below-average. Safety concerns were a major issue, as well as lack of routes and end-of-trip facilities.

‘Maybe now that someone has had some injuries, it might be an incentive to invest in some of this much-needed infrastructure.’

A spokeswoman for Mr Buswell said the draft WA Bicycle Network Plan was being finalised by the Department of Transport, taking into account issues raised in public consultation last year and recent election commitments.

‘In relation to the blackspot reported by Mr Deane, Main Roads has previously assessed the safety issues and added pavement markings and reflective signs to alert cyclists of the intersection,’ she said.

‘As well as these extra safety measures, there is also an onus on cyclists to slow down and cycle through the site with caution.’