The Council of Majorca has launched a new safety campaign for drivers and cyclists that is aimed at schoolchildren as well as adults and which goes by the title of "As a rule, on the road, safe". Publicity for the campaign involves the distribution of 20,000 leaflets and posters in four languages plus information videos. In addition to seeking to spread awareness of rules of the road and best practice, the Council is to also undertake road improvements that will make make roads safer for cyclists.
The campaign comes from the committee for cycling road safety. This has representatives from the Council's sport and land departments, the Balearic Cycling Federation, the Guardia Civil's Tráfico division, the Federation of Local Authorities, the Institute of Public Safety, the Majorca Hoteliers Federation and the IB3 broadcaster.
Messages from the campaign include reminders of rules of the road, such as drivers ensuring a space of 1.5 metres between cars and bikes, slowing down when coming close to cyclists and treating a line of cyclists as one vehicle on roundabouts and at junctions. For cyclists, there are reminders of the need to carry documentation, to not use headphones or mobiles, to ensure that they are seen at times of reduced visibility, to wear helmets and to ride at a maximum of two abreast.
Francesc Miralles, the Council's vice-president with specific responsibility for sport, has emphasised the need for cyclists and drivers to be aware that they share the same space and have to co-exist.
Distribution of the publicity will be via schools, adult centres, tourist information offices, hotels, tour operators and clubs affiliated to the Balearic Cycling Federation. As for road improvements, some have already been presented, such as bike lanes for the road between Ses Salines and Colonia Sant Jordi and the Algaida bypass.
The councillor for infrastructure, Mercedes Garrido, has observed that the whole of Majorca offers a great circuit for cycling. A priority for her department, therefore, is to foster a sustainable use of roads and to make them safer. The Council has budgeted twelve million euros for road improvements this year, with projects to include ones for the Cami de Conies (Manacor), Coll d'en Claret (Valldemossa), the S'Arracó-Sant Elm road and the bike lane between Son Ferriol and Son Llàtzer in Palma.
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