Gwynedd Scheme Aims to Give Cyclists Safer Space

A new scheme to remind drivers of the minimum space needed to ensure safety when passing a cyclist has been launched by Gwynedd Council. The first of their kind in the UK, the road signs installed along popular routes in Snowdonia are urging motorists to give cyclists 1.5 metres.

As part of a trial, the Council has received Welsh Government support to install the signage at locations along roads popular with cyclists in the northern part of the county.

Councillor Gareth Griffith, Gwynedd Council Cabinet Member for the Environment, said, “More people have made the most of the quieter roads during lockdown, but with traffic slowly increasing, Gwynedd Council is eager to ensure that cyclists continue get the respect and space they deserve on our roads.

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First Minister Asks People to Visit Wales Safely

From today, the requirement to stay local has been lifted, enabling people to travel in Wales and into Wales

First Minister Mark Drakeford said, "We live in such a beautiful part of the world and I know many of us are looking forward to visiting beaches, the countryside and our many beauty spots.

"People throughout Wales have done so much over the last few months to follow the rules and help reduce the spread of coronavirus – I thank them for their patience and understanding. I ask them to continue in this spirit.

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Getting Ready To Ride Again

With the lifting of the 5 mile rule in Wales on Monday 6th July, motorcyclists are just about ready to start enjoying the freedom that motorcycling gives.

Wales holds a major attraction for bikers due to the uniquely challenging roads and breathtaking scenery.  While the vast majority of motorcyclists show an excellent standard of riding, a small minority choose to use the roads as a racetrack, putting themselves and other road users in unnecessary danger and greatly increasing the risk of a collision.  Police forces across Wales will continue to target these individuals in the coming months, giving the clear message that poor and anti-social riding behaviour will not be tolerated.

Teresa Ciano, Chair of Road Safety Wales said, “Roads in Wales are among the safest in the world, however, partners in Road Safety Wales continue to strive for improvements, and reducing the number of motorcyclist casualties remains a priority.

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New School Traffic Schemes to Maintain Social Distancing

A series of new traffic schemes have been put in place across Cardiff at 27 sites, to ensure children and families can maintain social distancing safely and be supported to use active travel.

Other measures will include the widening of pavements and pathways and the introduction of temporary 20mph limits on roads at some school sites.

Cabinet Member for Education, Employment and Skills, Cllr Sarah Merry said, "A great deal of work has been undertaken with schools so that they can operate in physically distanced environments. These new traffic measures will allow children and families to arrive and depart from school safely, in addition to the physical distancing measures that will be in place during the school day.

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Mandatory MOT Testing to be Reintroduced from 1 August

Mandatory MOT testing is to be reintroduced from 1 August 2020 as COVID-19 restrictions are slowly lifted, Roads Minister Baroness Vere has announced.

  • Mandatory MOT tests for car, motorcycle and van owners in England, Scotland and Wales to be reintroduced to keep roads safe
  • Drivers encouraged to book a test in advance to ensure vehicles are in a roadworthy condition
  • Vehicle owners with an MOT due date before 1 August will still receive a 6-month exemption

Due to the coronavirus outbreak, drivers were granted a 6-month exemption from MOT testing in March to help slow the spread of the virus. However, as restrictions are eased when safe to do so, all drivers whose car, motorcycle or van is due for an MOT test from 1 August will be required to get a test certificate to continue driving their vehicle.

MOT tests are important for road safety and ensure that vehicle parts, including tyres, seatbelts, brakes, lights and exhausts, are in proper working order.

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Stop for Your Local Lollipop: Using Socially Distanced School Crossings

With the wider return to school in Wales from Monday 29 June, some School Crossing Patrols will be back in operation, helping to ensure the safety of children, parents and carers as they walk to school.

The way the service operates will have changed to enable social distancing to keep everyone safe.

  • Look out for markings on the path and make sure you keep a 2m distance from the School Crossing Patrol and other people at all times
  • Listen carefully to the School Crossing Patrol, they will give instructions on crossing safely
  • Only cross when the School Crossing Patrols tells you it’s safe to do so
  • Drivers are reminded to stop for the School Crossing Patrol allowing plenty of room for the SCP to retain a 2m gap between themselves and the crossing users

Enjoy the walk to school and stay safe.

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Funding for Local Sustainable Transport Measures in Response to Covid-19

Lee Waters MS, Deputy Minister for Economy and Transport has announced funding of £15.4m to local authorities to introduce measures to improve the safety and conditions for sustainable and active travel modes in their area in response to the Covid-19 crisis and to achieve sustained changes in travel behaviour in the future:

"The Welsh Government received a total of 209 proposals for measures from all local authorities in response to the invitation for expressions of interest. This clearly demonstrates the need, and willingness of local authorities, to introduce measures to protect public health and safety and to enable people to choose the healthiest and most sustainable transport modes for shorter journeys now and in the future. During the lockdown period there were large increases in walking and cycling among individuals and families, both for exercise and to make necessary journeys. We now need to act to maintain these healthy and climate friendly travel behaviours and prevent a return to heavily car-dependent travel choices.

"Among the diverse measures planned at the local level, I have asked local authorities to clearly prioritise delivery of those schemes which can be completed within the next three to four months and have the greatest impact in their local area.

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Cardiff Capital Region Creating a Modal Shift in Sustainable and Clean Mobility

The Cardiff Capital Region Transport Authority, which comprises the ten local authorities in South-East Wales, has announced notification of its successful application for a share of the Welsh Government Ultra Low Emission Vehicle Transformation Fund.

The award, which at £1.3m, constitutes the highest award made in Wales, follows a bid made by Merthyr Tydfil Borough Council in February 2020 on behalf of the region, to assist with the delivery of electric vehicle infrastructure for public use, taxis and private hire specific, and buses at various locations including transport hubs throughout the region.

This funding, being made available by the Welsh Government, is intended to assist in transforming the network to ULEV and help reach their targets of zero emissions from buses and taxis by 2028.

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Welsh Government Allocates £16 million of Resilient Roads Fund to Local Authorities

All local authorities were invited to submit applications for funding and 21 applications were received from 13 local authorities.

The Resilient Roads Fund of £16.9 million will support 18 schemes across 13 local authorities, and will be spent on schemes to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change, including addressing disruptions caused on the highway network by the severe weather.

Transport Minister Ken Skates said, "This fund will help local authorities pay for much needed work. This includes over £6 million to construct a further section of the Old Colwyn coastal defence scheme, which will protect the highway and active travel route from adverse weather.

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Ride to Work Day, 2020

Ride to Work Day, which is celebrated every year on the third Monday in June, is an opportunity to raise awareness of the benefits of motorcycle commuting, and to show that biking can be a practical alternative to commuting by car.

The message is even more relevant this year as the Government is advising people to avoid public transport to reduce the risk of a second Coronavirus peak.

By taking to two wheels, Ride to Work Day supporters are doing their bit to cut congestion for all road users. Also, a motorcycle or scooter is the perfect vehicle for socially-distanced transport; bikers even come equipped with their own gloves and face coverings. 

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