‘Share The Streets’ Rally In Hamilton Calls For National Action On Cycling Safety
On Saturday 14 May a rally was held in Hamilton calling for greater urgency on cycling safety and a national strategy for safe cycling in Aotearoa.
A group of over 50 people on bikes, including adults and young children, were escorted by police and rode from Steele Park in Hamilton East to Garden Place.
Over 60 people then gathered at Garden Place to hold a die-in, to raise awareness of the dangers that people riding bikes in Aotearoa face.
Melissa Smith from Share the Streets Kirikiriroa spoke at the rally about the need for safe, separated cycling infrastructure.
“We need separated cycle lanes, not more cycle lanes that are made out of paint. Paint is not protection.
“We don’t need more cycle lanes that run directly through the door zone of cars, or more bike lanes that are blocked by cones or parked cars. We just want to share the road and get where we’re going in one piece.”
Smith said there had been enough injuries and deaths on our roads and these were preventable. People cycling are 15 times more likely to suffer a death or serious injury on Hamilton's roads than motorists.
“Enough is enough. It is high time that our government takes this issue seriously. That’s why we are calling for a national strategy to deliver safe and effective cycling infrastructure across Aotearoa.”
A petition was launched today calling for a national strategy for safe cycling: https://www.change.org/p/minister-wood-make-our-streets-safe-to-cycle
According to the Ministry of Transport, seven people riding bikes have already been killed on New Zealand roads this year, including one in the Waikato. There were nine cyclist fatalities in 2021.