The following Open Letter addressed to Premier John Horgan and local MLA, was sent by James Mclauchlan. It is reposted here on SPN with Mr. Mclaughlan’s permission.
The Honourable John Horgan MLA, mailed on 2017-Aug-18
My name is James Mclauchlan, and I am writing to you today to highlight a piece in the traffic congestion puzzle. Throughout much of the rest of the world, it is standard practice for motorcycles, scooters, mopeds, and other powered two wheeled (PTW) vehicles to filter through slow moving, or stopped traffic in order to be proactive about their own safety and reduce congestion for all road users. Filtering is the act of riding in between two lanes of traffic flowing the same direction only, at a speed differential of 15kph or less, at a speed limit of 30kph or less. Studies have been conducted around the world to ascertain the safety of filtering, I shall provide a brief list of the findings from those studies!
- [Filtering motorcyclists] were markedly less likely to suffer head injury (9% vs 17%), torso injury (19% vs 29%), or fatal injury (1.2% vs 3.0%) than non-[filtering] motorcyclists.
- If 10% of commuters switched to motorcycles and filtered, total time loss due to congestion is reduced by up to 40%.
- If 10% of commuters switched to motorcycles and filtered, emissions are reduced by roughly 6% due to increased traffic flow
- [Filtering] at speeds of up to [40kph] yielded the same types of injuries as at slower speeds when involved in an accident
- Support for Lane Filtering in Canberra, Australia went from 20%, up to 69% after a two-year trial period, filtering has since been officially legalised.
If you would like the sources for these studies, they can be provided!
Motorcycles are fundamentally different from cars, and treating motorcycles the same as cars does all road users a disservice. This is not a change to be taken lightly on our roads, and would require a large public awareness campaign conducted by ICBC and the Ministry of Transportation, however motorcyclists across BC feel the effort would not be wasted. Getting more commuters into more efficient vehicles and incentivising their use is directly part of the government’s transportation plan. The evidence also supports the practice, and cannot be ignored given the increasing injury rates being suffered by motorcyclists, often at the hands of the increasingly distracted general driving population.
Thank you for your time and consideration.