Cyclists, electric scooters, cars… How to share public space in Puy-de-Dôme

Leaving work. Between Place de Jaude and Avenue des Etats-Unis in Clermont-Ferrand, Sébastien, 50, tracks on his electric scooter while riding the tram line.

As we chat, several cyclists follow him in the background.

“We must be able to do what we want without endangering others. I’m careful, it’s common sense,” he fusses. For him, no one respects anything anymore.

Why has the restructuring of the bus network in the metropolis of Clermont-Ferrand just taken a step?

“In one-way streets for cars, when there is a cycle path in the opposite direction to the signage, we get yelled at. »

Cyril Cineux, deputy in charge of traffic and sustainable mobility at the Clermont-Ferrand town hall, knows the difficulties on the ground, especially around meeting areas (sectors allocated to traffic for all users where the speed is limited to 20 km/h) and pedestrian areas.

Even if the cycle diagram is not finished, it is not a reason to do anything. What cyclists blame drivers for, they must not do to pedestrians.

Cyril Cineux (deputy responsible for traffic and sustainable mobility in Clermont-Ferrand)

Street code

In 2019, the metropolis of Clermont launched its first “Street Code”, a small guide “for educational purposes” which recalls the rights and duties of everyone in public space. “A tool at the service of the safety of the various users for peaceful journeys”, recalled then Olivier Bianchi, president of Clermont Auvergne Métropole, in the introduction.

Practice. The street code is available on the metropolis’ website here.

Inside, for each user (pedestrian, cyclist, electric scooter and motorist), information about the basic rules – “Where should I drive? – current advice on safety equipment and signage. “You have to carry the idea of ​​sharing, and that goes through information and measures like 30 km/h”, recalls Cyril Cineux.

At the level of the Clermont metropolitan area, each municipality implements its measures to improve coexistence between users.

All cities have developed with the monopoly of the car. There is education that needs to be done

Flavien Neuvy (deputy chairman responsible for the cycling plan in the big city)

Communication campaigns on city posters and distribution of teaching aids are planned. The next one from October 8. “I’m not saying it’s going to change everything, but it’s important to get the messages across.”

Cyclists: the first victims of accidents in the city

Soft mobility (pedestrians, bicycles, scooters, etc.) concerns 26% of accidents, including 18% of deaths in the department. The increase in the proportion of cyclists is significant.

Between 2019 and 2021, as many cyclists were killed on Puy-de-Dôme roads as in ten years (between 2009 and 2018), according to figures from the prefecture.In urban areas, 36% of cyclists involved in accidents are under the age of 24 in Puy-de-Dôme. Illustrative photo Fred Marquet

More and more on the roads, cyclists are involved in the majority. They represented 10% of recorded accidents between 2019 and 2021. More than 75% take place in urban areas, although the vast majority of deaths (9 out of 10) are outside urban areas. The high speed of cars is one of the main reasons. Seven out of ten killed are over the age of 55.

In the city, 75% of cyclists involved in accidents are under the age of 45. The trend has reversed in rural areas, with 75% over 45 years of age.

The case of electric scooters. Between 2019 and 2021, seven accidents involving electric scooters were recorded (0.5% of accidents). All in agglomeration. In 50% of cases, excessive speed was retained as the triggering factor. In 2022, six accidents (injuries) were recorded between January and August in the Clermont metropolitan area.

It should be noted that these statistics only include injuries and accidents registered by the police. Finally, the data regarding electric scooters is very new. Difficult to draw conclusions about a real development of accidentology, “apart from their entry into local accidentality”.

Bastien Durand

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