Tomorrow, at the Australian National Road Championship, Richie Porte will call upon his cycling comrades to ‘sign up for safer cycling’ on behalf of over 4 million Australians who bike ride regularly. Porte of Team Sky was voted the 2013 Australian Road Cyclist of the year.
Richie has said ‘enough is enough’ following a horrid 2013 that saw 48 bike riders lose their lives across Australia, including fellow Tasmanian Lewis Hendey on the eve of Christmas and has added his support to the launch of a Federal Petition to implement a metre matters as law.
The petition will call upon the Australian Government to implement changes to the Australian Road Rules mandating a minimum overtaking distance of one metre when drivers pass bike riders on the road.
“I’m going to put my name to this, on behalf of the families who are grieving over the loss of their loved ones in senseless bike-related tragedies, and the millions of Aussies who deserve to ride their bikes in a safer environment, whether for work, sport or play” said Mr Porte in preparation for the weekend. On Sunday he will compete in the Elite Men’s Australian Road Race Championship.
“The Amy Gillett Foundation’s a metre matters campaign has highlighted the need for legislation to drive safer behaviour on our roads.” he said.
Supported by Andrew Nikolic MP, Federal Member for Bass, Cycling Tasmania is sponsoring the petition that will run for three months before being presented to the House of Representatives in May.
Symbolically, the launch will take place immediately prior to the start of the Australian Women’s Road Australian Race Championships – a pet event of Amy Gillett who was killed while cycling in 2005 when hit by an out-of-control driver.
Cycling Tasmania is the peak governing body for both competitive and recreational cycling within Tasmania. Cycling Tasmania is an affiliate of Cycling Australia.
The Amy Gillett Foundation is a national charity whose mission is to reduce the incidence of death and injury of bicycle riders. The Foundation is a catalyst for change, driven by their Manifesto for safer bike riding in Australia.
For coverage of the 2014 Australian National Road Championships, visit Cyclingnews.com