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Western Suburbs Building and Landscape Supplies on Road Safety

Western Suburbs Building and Landscape Supplies

Western Suburbs Building and Landscape Supplies – 1DYT 178

 

On Thursday December 13, 2012 at 7:53 AM having just turned right from Tydeman Road into Port Beach Road, North Fremantle I experienced a very close pass; an experience that is so common to cyclists and to me that I have generally become indifferent to them, but for some reason this inconsiderate act of stupidity by the operator of this Western Suburbs Building and Landscape Supplies vehicle bothered me. Maybe it was because it involved a truck, a truck which had it hit me could have easily killed me; maybe because it was close to Christmas and I was feeling more vulnerable than normal. I don’t know but frankly I am sick and tired of this sort of driving. A few seconds of waiting and this whole incident could have been avoided and Western Suburbs Building and Landscape Supplies could have avoided this promotion of their business.

But it does not end there … this incident once again highlights serious road safety issues and the failure of the RAC WA and WA Police to act to protect their members and the citizens of Western Australia.

You may ask what has this got to do with the RAC? Well the RAC likes to describe itself today as a “mobility” organisation but it seems “mobility” only applies if you drive a motor vehicle. It is also the vulnerable road user (read pedestrian and cyclist) representative on the Road Safety Council of Western Australia.  This is the same RAC, whose spokesperson and failed LIberal WA party candiate Mr Matt Brown, vocally opposes safe passing legislation in Western Australia. Safe passing legislation such as that supported by “one-metre matters” campaign.  Yes you have read that right, Mr Brown and the RAC support the current road rules which consider this safe passing of a vulnerable road user.

If you are a RAC member and you or a member of your family are a cyclist you might want to reflect on how the RAC is acting in your best interests, in your families best interest. Maybe it is time to let your RAC Councillor, particularly Ms Jill Darby who is the RAC Councillor who sits on the Office of Road Safety on behalf of vulnerable road users, to know your views.

Sadly it does not end there. You maybe asking have I reported this incident to the WA Police? Well the short answer is no. For two reasons: The first is that the matter would be handled by Fremantle Police Station and my experience with Fremantle Police is that would be a pointless exercise. The Fremantle Police is far more interested in a blitz on cyclists than actually acting to protect our lives.

The second reason is that pass reporting of such incidents including this one involving a CTI Xpress truck results in a “no offence” response. I am now firmly of the view that at a minimum one has to be actually physically hit, that is injured, probably seriously before the Western Australian Police would consider it to be an offence under the Western Australian Road Traffic Regulations.

For what it is worth I have written to Western Suburbs Building and Landscape Supplies and sent them a copy of the video on a DVD. If I hear back from them I will update this blog posting. My letter to Western Suburbs Building and Landscape Supplies is as follows:

December 18, 2012

The Manager
Western Suburbs Building and Landscaping Supplies
232 Stubbs Terrace
SHENTON PARK WA 6008

Dear Sir or Madam

I refer you to the enclosed video of one of your nicely painted small trucks in action going through the corner of Tydeman Road and Port Beach Road, North Fremantle on Thursday December 13, 2012 at approximately 07:53 AM.

Given the expense you have gone to promote your business on this vehicle I thought you would appreciate a copy of the video and the subsequent coverage this video is now receiving at various websites on the Internet and all for no cost to your business.

The above notwithstanding I suggest next time you wish to promote your business, that you consider a more considerate and safe way of doing so; you know away that does not bring into question your obligations under Western Australian occupational health and safety laws, your obligations under the Western Australian Road Traffic Act 1976 and of course your duty of care.

You might also want to reflect on the Office of Road Safety campaign; “Enjoy the Ride.” You can find it at http://enjoytheride.wa.gov.au/

I do hope you have an enjoyable Christmas with your family and maybe when you and your employees are out on the road next time, you might want to consider that other families would like that experience too.

Yours faithfully

11 Responses to Western Suburbs Building and Landscape Supplies on Road Safety

  1. trailgumby December 19, 2012 at 4:42 PM #

    Perhaps trying to “teach you a lesson” for not using the bike path at the left? No excuse for that sort of highly dangerous driving, totally out of proportion to the perceived “offense”.

    • Andrew Priest December 29, 2012 at 10:10 PM #

      I don’t think it was intentional in that sense, just simply bad driving. BTW the path to the left is actually not that great and there is a on road lane just a bit further up the road. Also this is a popular route with cyclists.

  2. perthbiker December 20, 2012 at 9:35 PM #

    Having watch your video there was no reason why the driver of this truck could not have waited a few seconds and moved across into the other lane. There may not be a satisfactory outcome straight away, but I hope in the longer term your efforts to inform people about appropriate behaviour will make a difference.

    • Andrew Priest December 21, 2012 at 11:41 PM #

      I agree. A few seconds wouldn’t have hurt and the we would all be happy. Thanks also for the vote of support.

  3. Sandman December 21, 2012 at 12:27 PM #

    Ideally you should use the path, but that’s no excuse for peanut behaviour.
    Surprised the police did nothing, isn’t there a chargeable offense “using your vehicle as a weapon?
    I encountered this type of stupidity before, luckily like you I didn’t come off but I have found that the person behind the wheel is quite shocked when I caught up with them that they didn’t believe they were in error (driver ignorance – no excuse, they’re just plain dumb!). On one occasion a guy was showing off to his boyfriends in his car, by pulling out in front of me making another rider in front of me fall off his bike, so I caught him at a set of lights 3km away, after a brief exchange of pleasantries he proved that he’d like to lose his side mirror (much less vehicle damage had he connected earlier). Every time this guy passed me after this event he gave me plenty of room. It’s sad that it had to get to that, I’m a very very patient, non violent person.

  4. Helen Lovitt-Raison December 22, 2012 at 6:59 PM #

    Sadly I can relate to this as I ride the route Fremantle through to Maylands about once a week now however I steer clear of Port Beach Road. I get instead, the swerve-in-and-out tactics of drivers on Curtin Avenue who wish to inform me that the road is all theirs including the piece to the left of that solid white line. You know the bit with the white bikes marked on it at random intervals.
    Strangely I usually have few issues with container truck drivers who know their road rules better than the majority of other road users. I did nearly fall off one morning however when I encountered a pedestrian in the lane near North Fremantle train station. What the…?

    • Andrew Priest December 22, 2012 at 7:01 PM #

      What route do you take out of Fremantle Helen? Always interested in other options.

      • HelenLR December 30, 2012 at 3:42 PM #

        Along South Terrace & Market St, right at the station, up past Officeworks to the cycle path & over the river to Tydeman Road. Left there then right after the railway crossing and across at the T-junction when traffic allows. That brings me onto the road alongside Nth Freo train station and Curtin Avenue.

        • Andrew Priest December 30, 2012 at 5:23 PM #

          Thanks Helen. Ahh, so you head off down what is known as “Cheaters Lane” 🙂 I come home that way but haven’t headed north due to the no-right turn at the northern end. Will need to take another look at it.

  5. Ant December 23, 2012 at 10:53 PM #

    I’ll be contacting this business and letting them know as a previous customer, I’ll not use them again if they continue to allow their drivers to behave like this. There wwas even another lane he could have used. I’m not keen on Tydeman/Port Beach Rd as I always feel unsafe on that section too, it could so easily be made safer, notwithstanding the appalling driving sometimes displayed around there.

    • Andrew Priest December 29, 2012 at 10:09 PM #

      Thanks. Will be interesting if you get a response. I haven’t heard from them but then it is Christmas etc.

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