Cycling can provide many benefits, including helping to improve our personal health and wellbeing and reduce our travel costs. It can also help to tackle Perth’s growing traffic congestion and reduce emissions.
Cycling in WA
Cycling is increasingly popular in WA. Around 483,100 Western Australians go riding each week. Of those who cycle in a typical week (24 per cent of Perth residents), 41 per cent do so commuting purposes. To support this, RAC is advocating for better cycling infrastructure, as well as education and cyclist training initiatives and behaviour change programs to boost cycling participation and reduce the number of fatalities and serious injuries.
A 2015 RAC Cycling Survey revealed:
- 46% of respondents are moderately or extremely dissatisfied with Perth's on-road cycling infrastructure (e.g. cycle lanes), compared to 20% for off-road infrastructure (e.g. shared paths).
- 79% feel moderately or extremely safe when cycling on shared paths, compared to only 13% when sharing the roads with other vehicles.
- 43% stated fear of sharing the roads with motorists as a reason for not cycling more often, followed by 31% stating lack of bike routes.
- 71% believe the government should build more / improve on-road cycling infrastructure, such as cycle lanes.
- 64% would like to see more off-road cycling infrastructure such as bike/shared paths.
The personal and community benefits of cycling are widely recognised however in 2017 there were 7 cyclist fatalities and in the five years to December 2016, there were nearly 600 cyclists killed or seriously injured in Western Australia.Understanding the road safety challenges for cyclists is critical to encouraging the uptake of cycling and reducing the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.
Electric bike trials
In 2015, RAC teamed up with a number of partners across the Perth metropolitan area to run a trial of electric bikes (eBikes), the purpose of which was to better understand and promote their potential to overcome some of the barriers to cycling.
Following the success of the metro trial, in 2016 RAC partnered with new partners to trial eBikes in the regional city of Albany to help increase awareness and usage of e-Bikes, and boost cycling in WA’s regional cities and towns.
Each trial ran for 10 weeks and the 60 participants had exclusive use of their eBike. Across the two trials, more than 3,000 eBike trips were made for any purpose and over half of all commuting trips made were by eBike. The success of the trials is testament to what can be achieved through effective partnerships that put advocacy into action.
Shared Path Lighting Review
In late-2017, RAC initiated a project to investigate lighting quality along four popular sections of Perth’s Principal Shared Path and Recreational Shared Path networks to understand opportunities to enhance amenity and safety for people using the paths, encouraging more walking and cycling.
The study showed that nearly 60 per cent of the lighting along the 67km surveyed did not meet the relevant lighting standard.
RAC's Public Policy
RAC advocates for all Western Australians, whether they are a driver, passenger, cyclist, motorcyclist, or pedestrian.
This document outlines what we stand for and our public policy positions to support better mobility for Western Australians.
The policies in this document are approved by the RAC Council.
RAC State Budget Submission 2019-2020 (PDF 1.25MB)
RAC Federal Priorities 2019 (PDF 1.32MB)
Building a high quality cycle network (PDF 803KB)