Toxic emissions, spills, and explosions threaten cyclists

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No, this isn't the bike path to hell, although it sounds like it.

Here in the Pacific NW, cyclists are accustomed to hearing bike path objections from neighbors who don't like the idea of cyclists pedaling too close to their homes on rail-to-trails (like train locomotives are better?).

In Melbourne, Australia, it's three chemical companies who are fighting the proposed path of the 13-mile Federation Trail. It follows the route of an unused sewer.

The Age reports that three companies, one of them Omega Chemicals, oppose the trail because it could put bypassing cyclists in harm's way from toxic emissions, spills or explosions.

“We're doing our best to minimise mishaps but there is always some risk involved in this industry,” said an Omega spokesman.

The head of Bicycle Victoria isn't concerned as long as the companies have good relations with the EPA. “That would be different if someone was running a company that was doing business in a 19th-century manner.”

Meanwhile, more than 10,000 cyclists rode Melbourne's 130-mile Around the Bay in a Day this past weekend. The ride, a fund-raiser for the Smith Family charity, includes a ferry ride between Queenscliff and Sorrento.


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