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Perhaps commuting is not all bad

A one-way commute in Sydney takes about 35 minutes. It might not seem that long. But it means the average worker spends 280 hours a year commuting – that’s 37 normal working days. Megacommuters will spend a lot longer travelling back and forth. Read More

It is faster to cycle, but is it safer?

If you live in Newport and work in Chatswood, it’s quicker for you to cycle than to drive or take public transport. But being faster is not the same as being safer. Deaths and serious injuries from cycling went up last year more than other types of transport. So the decision about how to get around is not as simple as it looks. Read More

Transport affordability in Sydney and Wagga Wagga

Most Australians would think Sydney is the most expensive city for getting around. This is mainly because of toll roads. It costs $429 a week for an average Sydney household. But if you consider transport costs as a share of income, Sydney’s 15% is the fourth most expensive city for transport. Brisbane is the least affordable.

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Road safety strategy looks broken

For the first time since 2011, all states and territories in Australia will miss their road safety target. The National Road Safety Strategy aims to reduce by 30% annual deaths and serious injuries from road crashes by 2020. A recent inquiry tried to pinpoint why the strategy is broken and what to do about it. Read More

Westconnex sale – a taste of tolls to come

The NSW government on 31 August 2018 sold 51% of Westconnex to Transurban, owner of 15 of Australia’s 19 toll roads. Competition regulator ACCC at the last minute, cleared the way for Transurban and its partners’ bid.

The hefty $19.3 billion sale price makes Westconnex the state’s biggest privatisation and infrastructure project. It will entrench the company’s position as the dominant operator of Sydney’s toll roads.

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We don’t like waiting at traffic lights

As my mother once memorably said: “What’s the point of traffic lights? They only waste electricity!” While traffic lights are a fact of life for motorists and pedestrians, nobody likes waiting at them. In fact, any more than 30 seconds and we start fuming. Read More

How do you get people to stop texting?

Not everybody is convinced it is dangerous to text and drive. A surprising 68% of participants in Australian research said they needed a lot of convincing to believe in the dangers of texting and driving. If this attitude is widespread, how do we get people to stop texting and driving? Read More

Slow down but not too slow

When it comes to your driving speed in NSW, the only direction is down. More slow zones are coming. School zones are already 40kmh. Now the NSW government wants new 40kmh limits in high pedestrian areas like hospitals, train stations and shopping areas.

From September 2018, you must slow down to 40kmh when police, fire, ambulance, SES or rescue vehicles are flashing red or blue lights or stopped. Ignoring this incurs a $448 fine and three demerit points. Read More

Driving tired and what can wake us up

Many people drive when tired and one in five Australians have fallen asleep at the wheel. Fatigue is definitely involved in 20% of fatal crashes but could be a factor in a lot more. Sleepy drivers find it harder to keep within the lines, react more slowly and are less able to handle hazards.

But how tired is too tired to drive? And what can we do to wake ourselves up? Read More

Hybrid vigour – time to buy one

The chances of seeing a hybrid in Australia are still quite slim. Only 4,000 hybrid vehicles are on our roads, a mere 0.1% of new vehicle sales. Kiwis are already driving that same number of hybrids, even though their population is a fifth of ours. What is holding us back?

First of all, we don’t know what they are. Second, they seem too expensive anyway. Read More