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Pedal Power ACT calls for bike racks on all buses

By PedalPower 17 September 2012 23

bike racks

Canberra cycling group, Pedal Power ACT, is calling on the next ACT Government to make bike racks on ACTION buses reliable.

The current Government has put bike racks on 80% of buses and say they cannot fit them on the new long buses. Putting bike racks on buses was an ACT Labor initiative and Pedal Power ACT is concerned that a good idea may fail in the implementation.

‘For transport , 80% is not good enough,’ said Pedal Power ACT spokesperson, Brendan Nerdal. ‘It must be reliable. If you run late once because you have to wait for the next bus, or the one after that, you may start taking the car instead.’ 

The next Government should consider seeking an exemption from Roads ACT to allow them to fit bike racks on the long buses. Alternatively, they could increase fold-up seating to allow bikes, prams and wheelchairs inside the bus.

If a future ACT Government remains determined to forget this promise, then Pedal Power ACT has some pragmatic alternatives:

  • Currently MyWay data is not captured on bike rack use. If this data was captured, it could be used to improve bus schedules to place buses with racks on routes where they are most needed.
  • Currently fold-up bikes are not allowed on buses unless they are boxed, which defeats the point.  Fold-up bikes are designed for the purpose of integrating cycling with public transport.
  • No further buses should be purchased that cannot fit bike racks.

Pedal Power ACT is holding a cycling forum at 7.30pm on Wednesday, 19 September to hear about this and other issues from Chief Minister Katy Gallagher, ACT Greens MLA Ms Caroline Le Couteur and Canberra Liberals MLA Mr Alistair Coe. The forum is at the Johnson Auditorium, Pilgrim House at 69 Northbourne Avenue in Civic. Attendance is free and all are welcome.


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23 Responses to
Pedal Power ACT calls for bike racks on all buses
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KB1971 10:21 am 23 Sep 12

Aladdin1963 said :

I find it hatd to understand why these bike racks are supported.

Don’t they pose a danger to bike riders,?

I see them as being far more dangerous than the bullbars that this group are so against.

Just a thought!

No more than the 12 tonne bus behind it……

Aladdin1963 9:14 am 23 Sep 12

I find it hatd to understand why these bike racks are supported. Don’t they pose a danger to bike riders,? I see them as being far more dangerous than the bullbars that this group are so against. Just a thought!

bugmenot 1:55 pm 18 Sep 12

thatsnotme said :

Chop71 said :

…. use your pedals and ride the bloody bike.

That’d be my first choice. But sometimes life, and mother nature gets in the way.

The place where I lock up my bike is not secure. I have on occasion found my tyres either deflated and once slashed when I wanted to ride home. The intertown bus (thankfully with rack) was a godsend, but I still ended up having to walk from my closest interchange to the house (20 min walk) because the short-route bus didn’t have a rack and wouldn’t let me on.

It’s that or call friends and beg them to come pick me up.

blueterrestra 1:04 pm 18 Sep 12

thatsnotme said :

The question was why they couldn’t mix the bus types up a bit if they couldn’t all have racks, so at least every second or third bus had one. Their response was fairly useless. I’d also asked if they could at least consider mark the timetable to identify buses with racks, in the same way they identify wheelchair accessible buses, but they didn’t bother to even respond to that part of the question.

I completely agree. 80% isn’t a bad hit rate, and if the remaining 20% aren’t fitted due to safety issues then it’s not a bad outcome at all. If we get some kind of indication whether the next bus (or the one after) are capable of transporting bikes then we could at least plan ahead a little.

I don’t see it as that big an issue. I’d rather the money go into better maintenance of the existing infrastructure, like cleaning the paths of debris and glass, and patching up the areas where tree roots have torn up the bitumen.

KB1971 12:32 pm 18 Sep 12

wildturkeycanoe said :

Chop71 said :

…. use your pedals and ride the bloody bike.

Fully Agree, isn’t the whole point of cycling to get fit, prevent pollution, make friends etc? Don’t be a lazy sod and catch the bus 20km then jump off and pedal the last few hundred metres, raising a sweat in the process and bragging to your peers about what a wonderful day to cycle it is. Remove all bike racks and use the darned 2-wheeled things for which you keep whining for more infrastructure. Maybe the savings on bike racks can go towards your 3 laned super cycling freeways!!!

Come commute with me ofr a week, dare you.

wildturkeycanoe 5:58 am 18 Sep 12

Chop71 said :

…. use your pedals and ride the bloody bike.

Fully Agree, isn’t the whole point of cycling to get fit, prevent pollution, make friends etc? Don’t be a lazy sod and catch the bus 20km then jump off and pedal the last few hundred metres, raising a sweat in the process and bragging to your peers about what a wonderful day to cycle it is. Remove all bike racks and use the darned 2-wheeled things for which you keep whining for more infrastructure. Maybe the savings on bike racks can go towards your 3 laned super cycling freeways!!!

Henry82 10:10 pm 17 Sep 12

Very Busy said :

The exemption only applies in the ACT. It is therefore illegal to drive the bike rack fitted buses into NSW. ACTION does do some charter work into NSW so this is one argument for not fitting bike racks to 100% of the fleet.

I’m somewhat surprised they don’t just mount bike rack number plates ( http://www.rego.act.gov.au/assets/PDFs/Bike%20Rack%20Plates.pdf ) on the actual rack next to the handle (so when the rack is down, the bike plate is visible). One would expect a $35 plate to be much cheaper than getting written exceptions for all the buses in canberra, and would solve the NSW problem

Very Busy 8:00 pm 17 Sep 12

All ACTION buses that are fitted with a bike rack have an exemption from displaying a front number plate. A copy of the exemption notice must be kept inside the vehicle. Many of these buses have not had a numberplate fitted at all but most of the old buses still have the numberplate fitted even though it is obscured.

The exemption only applies in the ACT. It is therefore illegal to drive the bike rack fitted buses into NSW. ACTION does do some charter work into NSW so this is one argument for not fitting bike racks to 100% of the fleet.

bd84 7:39 pm 17 Sep 12

So pedal power thinks it should get its way at the expense of public safety? It’s little wonder people are apprehensive towards cyclists when they come up with bullshit like this just for the sake of it.

The 14.5m buses already operate with an exemption for being over length, and barely fit around most corners, yet these clowns want to make them even longer and a more dangerous?

I can accept fold up bikes on buses as long as they don’t take up space for other passengers, and the racks are a privilege i can live with for those who are either can’t be bothered riding all the way or want to look cool because they can’t get on the bus without bringing something along for the ride. At some point, like this one, someone needs to tell them to sit down and shut up.

thatsnotme 7:06 pm 17 Sep 12

KB1971 said :

I am using the car more often now, the new buses seem to be all put on the 319 & now I cant even get a midday bus that will take me & my bike home. On the upside, the 7 series buses have racks now bar a couple but my options have been reduced.

Agreed with the 318 & 319 – the vast majority are steer tag buses that I’ve seen. I actually wrote to ACTION about it, after one afternoon waiting in the Civic Interchange, and having four 3-series buses in a row arrive without racks (all steer-tag). The question was why they couldn’t mix the bus types up a bit if they couldn’t all have racks, so at least every second or third bus had one. Their response was fairly useless. I’d also asked if they could at least consider mark the timetable to identify buses with racks, in the same way they identify wheelchair accessible buses, but they didn’t bother to even respond to that part of the question.

Chop71 said :

…. use your pedals and ride the bloody bike.

That’d be my first choice. But sometimes life, and mother nature gets in the way. Eg, I ride in in the morning, but it’s blowing a gale and raining by the afternoon. Having a way to get my bike home without a car is nice. I see the truly dedicated, riding into the teeth of a gale in driving rain – from a warm seat on the bus. I ride to get fitter and save some money – I’m not training for the Olympics – so I can’t see any reason to punish myself more than I already do. My ride is 14.5km one way, which on a nice spring morning can be lovely, but into a headwind after a long day at work, is far less lovely.

RB78 6:45 pm 17 Sep 12

I would see a problem with the ‘steer tags’ getting a bike rack. I recall reading that they are restricted to particular routes due to their length – those routes they can’t operate are because intersections are not sufficiently wide for them to safely make a turn. Adding a rack would surely restrict the number of routes they could operate further.

That said, I have caught these once or twice and from memory the front half is the seats down the sides, so perhaps there’s more room inside for the bikes on those ones.

pptvb said :

Isn’t it illegal to obscure your numberplate with a bike rack?

The numbers on the windscreen are there so that the registration of the bus can be identified for cases such as speed cameras. For example, the one in the foreground of the OP’s photo has 405 on the windscreen, so would be BUS-405.

astrojax 2:17 pm 17 Sep 12

Chop71 said :

…. use your pedals and ride the bloody bike.

yeah, and drive all the way; don’t bother to park and ride, or any other sensible solution to road crowding and pollution…

KB1971 2:16 pm 17 Sep 12

pptvb said :

KB1971 said :

pptvb said :

Isn’t it illegal to obscure your numberplate with a bike rack?

Trolling?

Do you think that maybe Action, being a government agency & all, may have an exemption?
Route service buses are generally not a speeding hazard so there is no reason for the front plate to be visible. The only fixed camera that can only take photos from the front is on the Parkway & the buses are limited to 85.

Do some of you people not think before ngposti?

Hahahaha…. Where do I start?
A simple question, I was just curious as I had noticed a few times that I couldn’t see the number plates on buses fitted with the bike racks.
I didn’t realise number plates were fitted to vehicles for the sole purpose of identifying them speeding in non-residential areas!
Do some of you people not think before posting?

Yep, trolling & I bit *facepalm*….

Paul0075 1:18 pm 17 Sep 12

I would like to see all the buses fitted with racks also. As for obscuring the number plates, some of the new buses don’t have front plates.

pptvb 1:16 pm 17 Sep 12

KB1971 said :

pptvb said :

Isn’t it illegal to obscure your numberplate with a bike rack?

Trolling?

Do you think that maybe Action, being a government agency & all, may have an exemption?
Route service buses are generally not a speeding hazard so there is no reason for the front plate to be visible. The only fixed camera that can only take photos from the front is on the Parkway & the buses are limited to 85.

Do some of you people not think before ngposti?

Hahahaha…. Where do I start?
A simple question, I was just curious as I had noticed a few times that I couldn’t see the number plates on buses fitted with the bike racks.
I didn’t realise number plates were fitted to vehicles for the sole purpose of identifying them speeding in non-residential areas!
Do some of you people not think before posting?

Chop71 1:03 pm 17 Sep 12

…. use your pedals and ride the bloody bike.

KB1971 12:41 pm 17 Sep 12

pptvb said :

Isn’t it illegal to obscure your numberplate with a bike rack?

Trolling?

Do you think that maybe Action, being a government agency & all, may have an exemption?
Route service buses are generally not a speeding hazard so there is no reason for the front plate to be visible. The only fixed camera that can only take photos from the front is on the Parkway & the buses are limited to 85.

Do some of you people not think before posting?

pptvb 12:32 pm 17 Sep 12

Isn’t it illegal to obscure your numberplate with a bike rack?

KB1971 12:26 pm 17 Sep 12

Poetix: They are easy as, they have a squeeze handle in the middle to operate the rack itself. Once down, you lift the bike into the rack there is a U shaped bar that slides up over the front wheel. Takes no more than 5 seconds once you get used to it & dont faff around.

I am using the car more often now, the new buses seem to be all put on the 319 & now I cant even get a midday bus that will take me & my bike home. On the upside, the 7 series buses have racks now bar a couple but my options have been reduced.

Henry82 12:16 pm 17 Sep 12

poetix said :

At the risk of attracting derision from the more gung-ho bike types, there’s no way I would try and use these bike racks. I wouldn’t be able to figure it out and I’d be too embarrassed about holding the bus up..

The first time i tried it, held the bus up a little. Once you’ve seen it done, it really isn’t that hard.

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