A coalition of cycling groups plans to send an appeal to the Transport Minister, Anthony Loke, to provide bike lanes and to boost road safety for cyclists.
Asia Cycling Network (pic), which represents 62 Malaysian cycling groups, says the recent road accident involving former Airasia X CEO, Azran Othman Rani, at Jalan Duta, Kuala Lumpur on May 28, is just a small fraction of accidents involving cyclists (see list below).
As such they are requesting the Transport Ministry's cooperation to 1) allocate bicycle lanes on roads and 2) provide signboards and cyclist crossing lights or beacons.
In the memorandum of appeal to be sent to the Minister, they are asking for short term goals to have bicycle lanes within a 5 km radius of (urban) schools and transport hubs such as bus, train and LRT/MRT stations.
ACN says that while it is heartwarming to note that some Local Councils have provided (or will provide) bike lanes, the coalition notes that many of these lanes are not connected with the larger urban fabric and are only suitable for leisure riding among local communities.
ACN is asking that bicycle lanes be linked to transport hubs and the wider road network to benefit more users.
They note that cyclists are not just athletes, local leisure riders or tourists. They also include workers (from factories and other places) and school children who depend on bicycles as transport.
ACN says that encouraging cycling will reduce traffic jams, promote healthy exercise, and reduce our carbon footprint.
It will also promote cycling tourism and can open up access to new areas of the city, especially scenic ones such as river sides, or those which don't have sufficient parking.
ACN comprises cycling groups from Johor, Perak, Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Sabah and Melaka.
Bicycle accidents in last 18 months
The coalition notes that accidents in just 2017 and 2018 involving cyclists have become a worrying trend.
16 January 2017. Bakri Md Kasa, 39, a hearing-impaired cyclist was killed when he was struck by a car at Jalan Kuala Perlis-Changloon.
18 February 2017. Eight teen cyclists were killed when a car rammed into them on Jalan Lingkaran Dalam, Johor Baru.
4 June 2017. A 34-year old male cyclist on his way home from work was killed in a hit and run accident at Taman Impian Emas, Johor
17 August 2017. Roy Chin Yew Choong was on a night ride at the Lekas Highway when he was killed by a vehicle.
19 August 2017. Winnie Choong Suet Theng died at Genting Sempah. She was on a morning ride when a passing lorry rolled over her after a fall.
7 September 2017. Four National Paralympic cyclists and their trainer suffered serious injuries when hit during training on the Latar Highway.
26 November 2017. A 50-year old Japanese man, Kimura Shunsuke, died after he was rammed by a car on Lebuhraya Sultan Iskandar, Johor
10 January 2018. Ibnu Ahmad Ahmad Nais, 16, and a another boy died when a car ploughed through them at Jalan Kampung Maju Jaya, Pekan Nanas, Johor. They were returning home from kompang practice.