Police have urged motorists not to use the dedicated cycle lane on Leach St after a pedestrian was hit on Friday.
New Plymouth Police are telling motorists to stay out of a dedicated city centre cycle lane after a pedestrian was hit by a car as she tried to cross the road.
The walker was taken to Taranaki Base Hospital with minor injuries following the crash on Leach St, State Highway 45, which happened at 2pm on Friday.
The car was travelling along the cycle lane, which Senior Constable Grant Kennard said was an ongoing issue.
Officers recently monitored the stretch and in an hour staff warned 45 motorists for the same offence.
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“Cyclists we spoke to said they often felt unsafe while travelling along this route because of the vehicles using the lane meant for them,” Kennard said in a statement.
Friday’s crash happened when the woman had waited for the two lanes of traffic to stop and walked between the cars to cross the road, he said.
“When she has gone to walk across the cycle lane to get to the footpath, she has been hit by a vehicle that was driving down the cycle lane, passing the lines of traffic to get to the entrance of the Gull Service station.”
The driver will be issued with an infringement offence notice for unauthorised use of a special vehicle lane.
“Even if you’re intending to turn into a business or property located on Leach St you must only drive in the cycle lane for the minimum length necessary to complete the manoeuvre,” Kennard said.
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Police said the stretch of road was an ongoing issue.
Kennard said police would continue to monitor the stretch and motorists found using the cycle lane would be issued with an infringement offence notice.
Glen Phillimore, who works in sales at Mitchell Cycles in Strandon, said he was very familiar with the stretch of road.
“I ride my bike to work a lot and a lot of people drive in bike lanes. It’s a thing people think they can do.”
Leach St was particularly bad, he said, and he’d had a few near misses there.
“I run a GoPro camera on my helmet now so a lot of motorists tend to be quite nice to me because they can see the camera on my helmet.”
But Phillimore wasn’t sure what the solution could be.
“It’s a tricky one. I rode my bike in Auckland for 15 years and there they tried all kinds of different things like putting rubber strips on the road to stop people driving in but then people need to drive in and out of driveways.
“I guess it’s asking people to be more aware of what’s around them.”
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