MPI road safety efforts specifically aimed at active transportation options
As a leader in road safety in the province, Manitoba Public Insurance fully supports Manitobans’ efforts to pursue sustainable transportation options such as cycling and walking.
Manitoba Public Insurance’s road safety efforts are designed to complement the province’s recently announced Active Transportation Plan – a three-year plan focused on safety for cyclists and pedestrians, in addition to raising the awareness of drivers.
In alignment with road safety awareness, Manitoba’s public auto insurer is launching its ‘Cycling Champion’ program, which will enhance existing cycling safety awareness campaigns, educational materials available through the corporation’s website, and bike rodeos already being delivered to pre-school and early elementary aged children throughout the province.
“By reaching out to the grassroots level of cycling, our goal is to build a solid, road safety foundation to ensure the close association between active transportation and road safety,” said Ward Keith, executive director, Driver Safety & Regulatory Control, Manitoba Public Insurance.
“The objective is to educate both motorists and cyclists about road safety and the obligation to share the road safely. Road safety is a very much a team effort.”
The ‘Cycling Champion’ program encourages people to learn about cycling safety and then share that information by delivering safety presentations in their schools, workplaces or communities. In partnership with cycling stakeholder groups, Manitoba Public Insurance has developed a ready-made presentation kit that contains a facilitator’s guide with speaking notes and PowerPoint presentations geared towards both children and adults.
All of the materials required to deliver a cycling presentation are provided at no charge. As a value-added option, a hands-on training program delivered by certified Can-BIKE instructors is also available at no charge to those who want to take up this challenge.
For more information or to register for a workshop, people can call Manitoba Public Insurance Road Safety at 204-985-8737.
The ‘Cycling Champions’ initiative complements the corporation’s strong commitment to cycling safety, said Keith. Two safety presentations – “I Cycle Safely” and “Bike Safely” – were recently produced in collaboration with representatives from Bike to the Future; the Manitoba Cycling Association; Manitoba Healthy Living, Youth & Seniors; and the City of Winnipeg Active Transportation group.
“These informational presentations were specifically designed to educate cyclists on safe cycling practices as well as educate motorists on their obligation to share the road,” said Keith.
Nearly 1,000 cycling safety binders were distributed last fall to all English schools in the province. Another 200 were delivered to French speaking schools this past spring. In addition, companion booklets are also available through Manitoba Public Insurance and at bike shops throughout the province. In total, nearly 55,000 booklets have been distributed.
The province is hoping to get more Manitobans out of their cars to walk, roller blade or cycle through a new three-year, four-point action plan that will focus on improved co-ordination, support and promotion of active transportation (AT), Local Government Minister Ron Lemieux announced earlier this month.
Manitoba’s three-year action plan will consist of:
• Co-ordinate the province’s AT efforts and investments,
• Increase access to relevant and timely information and tools,
• Support and promote AT as a safe and viable transportation choice, and
• Build partnerships with local governments and community stakeholders.