In light of South Australia’s recent successes in containing the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic locally, Cycling South Australia is happy to be able to update our advice to members and cyclists in South Australia. While some are encouraged to continue to exercise solo including those currently exhibiting cold-like symptoms, those who have been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, people at high risk including those who are immuno-compromised or those who are in close contact regularly with people who might be high risk (e.g. a person who lives with an elderly or chronically ill relative), those who are not high-risk can resume riding outdoors in small groups, as per the Emergency Directions current in our state (details here: https://www.covid-19.sa.gov.au/emergency-declarations/gatherings). Social distancing guidelines still need to be followed. The South Australian government still strongly discourages any gathering with more than two other people.
It remains an offence to gather in groups of more than 10, punishable by a $1000 fine in South Australia. As always, we encourage you to ride responsibly, and to not take any unnecessary risks.
If you are concerned about contracting the disease from others who might be out and about or are at a high risk of contracting the disease, we still recommend that you undertake your exercise alone or with members of your own household. If you would like to reduce your risk even further, Australian cycling apparel brand and long-time supporter of Cycling South Australia, SCODY, is manufacturing fabric face masks with a pocket for a disposable particle filter in their Brisbane factory! Available here: https://www.scody.com/282-face-masks
While Cycling SA maintains its suspension of all race sanctioning until further notice, it currently seems unlikely that bunch racing will take place in June, and potentially beyond this. We are currently planning all events that were planned for August-December to take place, though they may yet be modified or postponed in accordance with Emergency Directions as we get closer to them. These events include four rounds of the inaugural Adelaide Track League, the Cycling SA Super Series, State Junior, Elite and Open Road Championships, State Junior Time Trial Championships, and the Spring and Summer criterium, track and road club racing fixtures we all love so much.
We will continue to monitor the advice of the relevant government authorities and update our recommendations accordingly.
A note on drafting/respirated droplets and risk of infection. A study that went viral(!) earlier this month encouraged cyclists to avoid riding directly behind another cyclist for up to 20m, depending on the speed they were travelling at. That study’s relevance has since been questioned due to the low viral load transmittable at such a distance and the low risk of contracting the virus from such a small number of particles. We would recommend that all cyclists use common sense when riding during this time, and ride (or not ride) behind other cyclists using their best judgement. That judgement will differ in all situations and to all people. Regardless of your personal judgement for your own wellbeing, we would ask that all CSA members and all cyclists respect the wishes of others when passing them on the road by passing at a distance of no less than 1.5m abreast and pulling back in no less than 10m in front.