CYCLISTS are people, too.
Port Macquarie Triathlon Club president Andrew Lister is encouraging residents to look past the Lycra and helmet to consider cyclists as people and treat them accordingly.
“It’s more than likely to be your GP or the waitress that served you last night in a restaurant,” he said.
Mr Lister said respect from both motorists and cyclists was important.
He has thrown his support behind safety campaigns such as the Amy Gillett Foundation’s A Metre Matters.
The catch-cry encourages motorists to allow at least a 1m space when passing cyclists.
“You might be delayed by 10 seconds to get around a cyclist, but it takes a single second to seriously injure or kill someone,” Mr Lister said.
Australian Transport Safety Bureau data shows between 2000 and 2005, the number of cyclist deaths ranged from 26 to 46 a year, or about 2 or 3 per cent of total deaths in road crashes.
Many injuries go unreported.
The Amy Gillett Foundation’s primary objective is to reduce the incidence of injury and death caused by the interaction between cyclists and motorists.
The foundation’s chief executive officer, Tony Fox, said it was important to raise awareness about the need to make extra space around cyclists to ensure safety on the roads.
Mr Lister identified Hastings River Dr, Houston Mitchell Dr and Pacific Dr as cycling black spots.
Cycling has become increasingly popular, competitively and recreationally.
And it is a family pursuit for the Listers. Jack, 10, urged drivers to look out for cyclists.
“If you hurt a cyclist, it also hurts their families as well,” the Tacking Point Public School student said.
Mr Lister acknowledged cyclists also must follow the road rules and motorists needed to consider cyclists, too.