Wednesday, December 28, 2011

City Council Resolutions for 2012: More Bike Law Enforcement

Posted By on Wed, Dec 28, 2011 at 10:13 AM

Not the type of bike targeted by the latest NYPD crackdown.
  • Not the type of bike targeted by the latest NYPD crackdown.

Almost exactly a year ago, discussing a just-launched NYPD crackdown on cyclists, we wrote:

The goal was to penalize violators of the most basic laws, like running red lights or going down one-way streets in the wrong direction. Neither a temporary push nor a ticket quota-backed effort, the NYPD planned to simply start enforcing laws that had gone unobserved for the decades during which the city left cyclists to fend for themselves.

12 months later we're in for more of the same, with City Council Transportation Committee chairman James Vacca telling the Post: "I get a lot of phone calls and a lot of concerns about rogue bicyclists."

In addition to a concerted police crackdown on delivery cyclists—"Because they’re delivering and they’re in a hurry, they sometimes just flout traffic laws, and we can’t have that"—Vacca is looking at several possible new pieces of legislation to help reign in rambunctious riders.

- Bills that require reflective gear for commercial bikers, with an identification number on the back.
- Requiring delivery cyclists or the companies they work for to register and insure commercial bikes.
- Requiring the DOT to submit to the council master plans for the installation of bike lanes on city roads.
- A bill mandating that city agencies post prominent signs warning cyclists to slow down and yield to pedestrians who share their bike paths.

Vacca, apparently unaware that motorists pose an even greater threat to pedestrians than cyclists (who are also killed regularly by motor vehicles), tells CBS 2:
We’ve got to make it clear that when you use a bicycle you have to go the right way on a one way street, you have to obey red lights, you have to stay off sidewalks. You have to consider motorists and pedestrians. You have to consider all users of public space in the city.

We find no problem with an additional bill prohibiting cyclists from chaining their bikes to trees. We just hope it's accompanied by increased bike rack installation.

(Photo)

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