IN A SIGNIFICANT stride towards enhancing safety, Queensland Parliament introduced the Transport and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2023 last month which is intended to improve the safety of riders, drivers, and pedestrians alike, including harsher penalties and new offences for riders who ride without due care and attention.
Independent Member for Noosa Sandy Bolton has been advocating for safety improvements, better enforcement in shared spaces such as pathways, and better compliance monitoring of regulations by users of electric bikes and scooters.
“The devil is always in the detail, and we look forward to researching this as we do with every bill that comes before Parliament to ensure it covers the concerns raised by our community.”
“We have also requested clarification if these efforts include increased enforcement to ensure electric bikes and scooters on Queensland roads and footpaths meet Australian Design Rules which sets out that electric bike motors have to cut out at 25km/hour,” Ms Bolton stated.
The Minister for Transport and Main Roads’ response to Sandy acknowledged the community’s concerns with the current legislation framework for riders and other path users. In particular, important road safety offences contained within primary legislation that either do not apply to riders or apply inconsistently to riders and other path users.
To address these inconsistencies, the proposed Bill introduces road safety amendments that will make it an offence for the rider of a scooter or bicycle to ride without due care and attention on a road-related area, such as a footpath or shared path.
The new laws will also align post-crash obligations for all drivers and riders and will ensure that everyone involved in a crash has the same rights and responsibilities regardless of where the crash occurs.
The Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) also advised they are aware that some devices available for purchase in Australia or online can be easily modified to remove speed-limiting software that ensures they are compliant with the current 25 km/h maximum speed limit.
TMR has taken steps to ensure that police have the appropriate tools available to them to detect and take enforcement action against riders exceeding speed limits.