Driving is a necessary part of many people's lives, but the road rules may often seem perplexing. Sometimes rules are forgotten after drivers receive their licences and experienced drivers may also be unaware of new rule and legislation changes. From Monday, March 21 through Sunday, March 27, Transport for NSW Road Rules Awareness Week will promote the laws that have the greatest impact on minimising road trauma, highlight the most misunderstood road rules, as well as provide road users the opportunity to have their questions answered.
Photo credit: Transport for NSW
Although last year’s injury statistics are greatly improved, with total fatalities the lowest since 1923 at 270, there is always room for reduction and the aim is “Towards Zero”.
Commenting on the value of Road Rules Awareness Week, Metropolitan Roads Minister Hon. Natalie Ward MLC said all road users need to be reminded that their actions and judgments while driving have an impact on everyone else.
"We need to treat everyone on the roads as if they are loved ones, as if they are family,” Hon. Natalie Ward MLC said. “Every decision we make can have consequences, and sometimes they can be tragic and avoidable. We have a shared responsibility to make our roads safer. Understanding and following the road rules is vital.”
Following road rules is important to safely share the road, and pedestrians and bicycle riders are the most vulnerable of road users. Bicycle NSW has previously run a campaign centred on one of the most impactful set of road rules concerning bicycles: the Minimum Passing Distance.
This Minimum Passing Distance Law, which came into effect permanently in May 2018, requires drivers to provide bike riders 1 metre of space while overtaking when the speed limit is 60 km/h or less, and 1.5 metres of space while overtaking when the speed is signposted over 60 km/h. To give a rider space, drivers can cross double lines, an unbroken dividing line or drive on a painted island, if it is safe to do so. Check out the Road User Handbook to brush up on your knowledge of NSW road rules.
"Whether you're a motorist or a bike rider, we all have a responsibility to play in keeping our roads and each other safe," Bicycle NSW CEO Peter McLean adds. "It is of vital importance to make sure you know what the road rules are and follow them."
When people do not follow the rules, there is a greater chance of injury to road users. A Bicycle NSW Membership provides riders with comprehensive insurance if a bike accident does occur.
Learn more about the Road Rules Awareness Week here and stay safe!