Australia has scored another own goal for cycling this week as a sign reminding drivers to give cyclists space was left entirely blocking a bike lane, forcing riders to veer out into traffic to avoid it.
Matt Howell spotted the large electronic notice board yesterday on a Sydney street and shared it to Facebook page I love Sydney Bike Lanes and Cycle Ways, an account used by frustrated cyclists to bemoan a lack of cycling facilities in the city.
Howell comments: “Up there for thinking. Give cyclists space and put a sign in the middle of the bike lane lol”
The response to the ill-placed sign was a mixture of bemusement and sarcasm.
Jack Dixon commented on the picture: “This is pretty much the problem - the bike rules are made by people who don't ride bikes and have no idea of what issues people on bikes face. Still, you shouldn't ned to ride a bike to understand what's wrong with this picture."
Another wrote: “The road to hell is paved with good intentions”.
There is growing disquiet Down Under as a raft of laws are passed or proposed, aimed at penalising cyclists. Last week a motion was voted down 17-22 to reverse the increase of fines for cyclists by up to 500%.
That legislation had been brought in at the start of this month by New South Wales’ minister for roads, Duncan Gay, the man behind the removal of a Sydney bike lane - the $5m College Street cycle track - in order to make room for cars, which sparked a mass protest in the city in January.
Gay, who describes himself as "the biggest bike lane skeptic in goverment", floated a law, which came into force this month, requiring Sydney cyclists to carry ID at all times. A minimum safe passing distance for motor vehicles overtaking cyclists of 1m was introduced at the same time.
Sydney cyclists, perhaps unsurprisingly, sometimes resort to sarcasm.
Novices. Our transport authority pays to RIP UP bike lanes. Come to a real car city. Drive right into the 1950's https://t.co/BCHKfBfCSO
— BIKESydney (@BIKESydney) March 14, 2016
It is understood the sign has since been removed.