Be aware, cyclists! Starting today, Toronto police are "campaigning" for safer cycling (pdf). In theory it means education and enforcement of cyclists and motorists. What it means in practice is that police wait at intersections to catch cyclists making the all-to-common mistakes of doing a "rolling stop", not making proper signals, not having a bell, not having reflective tape on the front and back forks, or of riding through the crosswalks or sidewalks. In practice the education part means police will encourage cyclists "to refresh themselves with the rules of the road" by giving out fat traffic infractions.
Toronto police have also started to target motorists who park in the bike lane or endanger cyclists in other ways. To their credit, the police are learning that it's not just about cracking down on cyclists but there needs to be stronger enforcement of motorists. But why don't we keep the pressure up to ensure that the police actually enforce bike lanes and car doors the rest of the year? And why don't we let them know that putting an enforcement campaign right in the middle of Bike Month is not very helpful or respectful of cyclists? It's like saying: "Congratulations! Here's your ticket!"
Credit: Gabi (Flickr)
"Safe Cycling" in The StarMon, 06/16/2008 - 13:25
There is a very short article in today's Toronto Star (printed version) today:
"Motorists are asked not to park in the marked bicycle lanes."Mon, 06/16/2008 - 20:56
"Motorists are asked not to park in the marked bicycle lanes." Asked? Come on! Why has our society become so soft? Is it not illegal to park in a marked bicycle lane? Shouldn't that be enough... it's illegal so don't f'in do it or you'll get a ticket, and maybe get towed!
Do as I say...Mon, 06/16/2008 - 13:35
Just two days ago, I was riding south on Brock, approaching Dundas. Two cops on bikes were ahead of me, stopped at a red light at Dundas, wanting to turn left (east). Instead of waiting for the light to turn green, they crossed over the opposite lane of traffic to the north-east corner, hopped onto the sidewalk, rode along the sidewalk for a bit, then crossed Dundas to the south side and continued east.
Looks like some bike cops could also stand to "to refresh themselves with the rules of the road".
redphone (not verified)
Unfortunately "but he'sMon, 06/16/2008 - 15:07
Unfortunately "but he's doing it!" hasn't been an acceptable excuse since we were 5. (remember mom saying "do as I say, not as I do"?)
It's not fair, but in the end, emulating cops or other bad cyclists isn't going to fix anything.
What I'd really like to know is if there is a police sponsored or approved site that puts together all the rules that cyclists should be following? ie, Most of us know all the big ones, but little things like the reflective tape needing to be on our front forks was a new one for me.
jason (not verified)
reflective tapeMon, 06/16/2008 - 15:13
of the six bikes in that photo, how many have reflective tape on their forks? none?
Please don't emulate bike cops!!!Mon, 06/16/2008 - 15:39
Sorry redphone, but you've misinterpreted my post. I'm not saying we should emulate cops - far from it! I'm just pointing out the hypocrisy of this "Share The Responsibility" campaign when bike cops are some of the worst cyclists out there.
When those who should be enforcing the law break the law, it cheapens the whole legal system.
As for your question about what the laws are, google "bike laws toronto" and this is the first link...
I don't see anything about reflective tape there.
jason (not verified)
62(17)Mon, 06/16/2008 - 15:48
funny, that the first offence on that list is section 62(17) `Improper bicycle lighting' since that is the section that includes reflective tape here is the text from the ontario highway traffic act:
Motor assisted bicycles, bicycles and tricycles, lights on, etc.
(17) When on a highway at any time from one-half hour before sunset to one-half hour after sunrise and at any other time when, due to insufficient light or unfavourable atmospheric conditions, persons and vehicles on the highway are not clearly discernible at a distance of 150 metres or less, every motor assisted bicycle, bicycle or tricycle shall carry on the front thereof a lighted lamp displaying a white or amber light and on the rear thereof a lighted lamp displaying a red light or a reflector approved by the Ministry, and in addition there shall be placed on the front forks thereof white reflective material, and on the rear thereof red reflective material covering a surface of not less than 250 millimetres in length and 25 millimetres in width. R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8, s. 62 (17).
ReflectingMon, 06/16/2008 - 15:46
The stuff about reflective tape etc. has nothing to do with City bylaws....it's all Ontario Highway Traffic Act.
Good summary of HTA stuff as it applies to cyclists is in the MTO's "Cycling Skills" booklet:
Also...technically, those cops and the mayor aren't breaking any laws by not having the reflective tape on their forks. However, they better be parked or walking at least half an hour before sunset.
Martin Reis (not verified)
The Rules of the RoadMon, 06/16/2008 - 18:18
Open you car door and kill someone ... no charges laid.
Run over a cyclist from behind ... no charges laid.
Kill a seven year girl on her bike while riding on a crosswalk ... no charges laid.
Steal a truck and run over a guy in the middle of the night ... he got away ...
Break the law on your bike and no safe passage for you. Ever.
Got it? Good.
Those are the rules of the road.
Teaching the rules of the roadMon, 06/16/2008 - 21:00
Excuse me, where / how do cyclists learn "the rules of the road"? How do rules that are rarely taught get "refreshed"? Pleeze.
If bikes are a part of road traffic, cyclists should have the same training (and proof of training) as the rest of the road users. But they don't. All a person needs is to go out, buy a bike, and hit the streets. It's a great inside joke in this province.
Bicycle teaching and learning needs to become a daily part of peoples' lives.
Everytime I ride, I see uninformed, uneducated, blissfully ignorant people doing things with their bikes that are totally unacceptable, illegal, and dangerous. If these cyclists were driving automobiles, traffic would be mayhem.
Remember the phrase "sunday drivers"? That's what occasional, recreational (unskilled, dangerous) motorists used to be called. But then driver training and licensing became law, was made common, and getting your 365 / G1 became a rite of passage, not a luxury. Now the pendulum has swung; cycling is marginal, esoteric, and widely percieved as recreational; "Sunday cyclists" are a regular part of traffic.
Until all cyclists take their status as vehicular road users seriously, things will continue to stay the same. And the rest of society will follow right along, because they don't know any better, because no one's teaching them in the first place.
training road usersTue, 06/17/2008 - 15:04
Since our rules of the road are based on the admiralty's rules of navigation, let's compare our roads to our waterways. Motor boaters are required to have proof of competency. Operators of larger vessels, being Captains of ships, have more training than most, while ferry Captains are held to a higher standard still.
Motorists , too, are required to have proof of competency: that is have a driver licence. Operators of large vehicles, ie trucks, have more training than the rest of us, while bus drivers are held to a high standard by the bus lines they work for.
In comparison to miles travelled or hours logged, Captains, truck drivers and Bus Drivers have a lower collision rate than just about everybody else. There's little doubt that the extra training that they received has something to do with this accomplishment.
But there's more to it. Captains and Bus/Truck drivers also have to pre-qualify. These people have show an aptitude, as well as the proper attitude, to be hired by those who own these large machines, and/or to obtain insurance for their vehicles. Almost all Captains start in an apprentice program before become officers and earning their rank as Captain, a process which usually takes years. Truck/Bus drivers are required to have several years of driving experience before taking the additional training to learn to operate large vehicles.
A person in a rowboat, canoe, or bicycle does need not have any training before they go out and use our public right-of-ways. Using a human powered machine is seen as a "right". The amount of damage that can be done to others, and to property, is miniscule in comparison to the amount of damage that can unleashed by a large, high powered vehicle. This is why cyclists and canoeists don't require vehicle registration or insurance, while motor vehicles and motor vessels, and their operators, require both.
Most of our waterways are nowhere near as busy as our roads. Our roads have complex laws and regulations which one should make themselves familiar with before taking to the roads. Expert riders have a lower crash/collision and injury/death rates than novice riders. Riding involves learning a complex skill set, similar to a plumber or electrician. The difference between a novice and an expert rider is about four years of daily riding, or about the same length of time as most apprenticeship programs. People who participate in a program such as CAN-BIKE can find that time between novice and expert reduced to as little as six months.
To my knowledge, there has been no follow-up studies of CAN-BIKE graduates to find out if their crash/collision rates or rates of injury/death are any lower than those who have not taken the program. Because the course is voluntary, it may be that the training is only part of the reason for any difference; the kind of people attracted to such a program (self pre-qualification) may also a factor.
That being said, there is still no reason to discourage anyone from taking CAN-BIKE. Other experience and studies have shown that groups of people with additional training generally do better than those who didn't receive the extra training. Reviewing the rules of the road, cyclist's roles & responsibilities, negotiating with other people using the roads, handling a bike, and avoiding various types of hazards on the road is still a complex skill set. Learning some good habits can only be good for everybody.
In the meantime, we have to suffer with adults riding bikes like kids on our roads.
Rob B (not verified)
rules of the roadMon, 06/16/2008 - 22:26
When the rules of the road - and the consequences for breaking them - benefit cyclists, then we'll obey them. But until that happens it's pretty rich to give us tickets for doing things, like riding on sidewalks, that contribute to our safety. Let us take care of ourselves - the police certainly aren't interested in doing it for us.
And no driver should jump in here to say that I am somehow duty-bound to obey laws that endanger me. You aren't expected to do that, so why should I?
tickets for sunday cyclistsMon, 06/16/2008 - 22:46
I agree with Brian here. The next time some moron wobbles past me through a red light and then slows down so that I have to cross streetcar tracks to get past them when I inevitably catch up, I would love to see them get a ticket. Or at least have the coppers delay them with a stern warning for a while.
If we want to be taken seriously as road users, we need to ride well proper like. With the following exeptions.
Couriers ok, at least they take a good look if they blast through the red, I got no problem with that. I also give cabbies a break for changing lanes without signaling stopping without indicating, it's what they do, so you have to be aware of that.
Bottom line is I want to see the rules enforced all the time, not just during bike month. Having no emissions or noise pollution does not give us the right to drive like arses.
good skills AND good roadsMon, 06/16/2008 - 22:50
We need both. I've got to agree partly with Brian. People would benefit greatly from a more intensive cycling course in all schools. I don't think it has to be a matter of licensing but just that everyone gets the education. I think you'd find a lot more people who'd feel comfortable about getting on their bikes. Plus we'd have a whole lot more drivers that were aware of the cyclist's perspective and take greater precautions.
The Dutch and Danish have a great street system for cyclists and they put a lot of emphasis on education. The two go hand in hand.
You can always break the rules of the road afterwards, but at least you'd be smart enough to know which ones you can safely get away with.
But, as others pointed out, this police emphasis on education is ridiculous. I think they expect people to google for the right rules or something.
ChoicesMon, 06/16/2008 - 23:50
"Danger", "risk", "hazards" are around all of us, every moment, every day, every where. Life is full of risk, most people are blithely unaware of what's happening around them and even within them.
It's about taking responsibility for actions and consequences. Traffic, and the world, would be different if ppl relied on their own training and skills, rather than the devices and laws designed to assist and promote good choices.
Choosing to ignore the laws and the signals is a valid choice, but one should be aware of the consequences, and the message that choice sends to others.
Education is something we can all participate in - knowledge is useless if it is not shared!
Repeal the annoying laws.Tue, 06/17/2008 - 00:26
I suggest writing to your MLA/MPP and get some of these laws repealed.
Reflective material on forks?! I haven't seen one bike on the road or one bike for sale with reflective material on the forks. They just don't exist. That law should be rescinded. If increasing visibility is the intent of the law then that intent is already covered by requiring lights. But IMHO it doesn't matter how visible you are, drivers who do not look for cyclists will not see you.
Bells: Useless for people who ride quickly. It's much more practical and safe to yell, and start avoiding the collision than it is to reach for the bell, ring it, then try to get your hands back into position to steer / brake / bail. I know bells give a great deal of comfort to people who travel at a leisurely pace, so why not make them optional, instead of mandatory?
If anyone has laws they would like amended, add a comment, and hopefully we can come to some sort of consensus.
reflective material on the forksTue, 06/17/2008 - 09:59
What's annoying about this law is that many bicycles simply don't have enough area to comply with this law. Even if you tried, you couldn't make kid's bikes, bikes with suspension or road bikes with narrow forks/stays comply with this law.
If these laws are so important then why doesn't the law require that bikes be sold already equipped to ride? That is require the retailer, the importer, and/or the manufacturer to include this stuff pre-installed on the bikes before I can buy it.
Because so few people ride bikes that comply with this onerous provision, I simply see it as another excuse to blame the victim when a collision occurs. The police/insurance/courts can say "look, that rider's bike didn't comply, so that fault lay on the bike rider."
Ted C (not verified)
Good luck even finding reflective tapeTue, 06/17/2008 - 10:26
I went into a bike shop just last weekend to buy some reflective tape, as I had just recently learnt that it was required by law.
The guy at the counter told me that I must have been mistaken, and that tape was not required by law. Only lights and reflectors (so he said).
I said I wanted to buy some anyway, but they only had one roll of red in stock, and no rolls of white. So I gave up.
Canadian Tire has whiteTue, 06/17/2008 - 22:28
Canadian Tire has white reflective I bought some last week .,,,,,, =8^) (Steeker)
Ted C. (not verified)
AddendumTue, 06/17/2008 - 10:33
Actually, I spoke to two people in the bike shop. The first guy didn't even know what I meant by reflective tape.
The second guy knew about the reflective tape, but he seemed to think it was an unusual thing to ask for.
I'd hate to see compulsoryTue, 06/17/2008 - 10:42
I'd hate to see compulsory safety classes for cyclists, it would be one more barrier for the average person to hurdle when deciding to make that commuting change.
People know it's illegal to ride through a red light and some take that risk, education won't deter recklessness.
Martin rReis (not verified)
The rules and taking responsibilityTue, 06/17/2008 - 11:29
For the record.
I have absolutely no problem with getting a ticket if I break the rules of the road.
Safeless cyclingTue, 06/17/2008 - 12:23
While the seasonal crackdowns on safeless cyclists -- sans condom? -- amount to tits on a bull as far as improving cyclists' welfare, I don't think them worth much anxiety. Just be more vigilant for a week or two, heed the letter of the law, then roll on your merry way.
Police have to be seen doing something -- anything, by Gawd! -- to address the mobs of lawless cyclists running amok on city streets. Since they've effectively eliminated gunplay in the projects and car-nage on the highways I suppose we represent the next frontier of barbarism. Who'd have thunk the lack of a bicycle bell would put civilization at risk?
Reflective TapeTue, 06/17/2008 - 15:00
I obey the rules of the road, but do not have the tape on my forks. In fact, I've always found it strange that this law was passed. Cars MUST be sold with all regulated safety equipment fully functioning (lights, horns, brakes, etc). If safety features are to be mandated for bicycles as well, why are the manufacturers not required to install these presale? Surely the tape can be added when the other stickers are. They'd even be trendier. More like the 3M taping on running jackets. Punish the manufacturer not the owner for failing to provide the adequate safety gear. This will also save dollars on enforcement.
Anonymous (not verified)
Agreed to the person whoTue, 06/17/2008 - 17:40
Agreed to the person who said manufacturers should be responsible for adding Bells and Reflective Tape.
How come all of the bikes at Canadian Tire don't have either, yet it is the law? I'm buying something under the false pretense that it has met the safety specifications outlined by the province. If I bought a piece of electronics that wasn't certified the police would be cracking down. Where is the CSA?
Tory (not verified)
Reflective tapeTue, 06/17/2008 - 17:40
Thank gawd others are with me on this one. Screw reflective tape. I have a front and rear light, that is enough, if you can't see the lights, you're not going see the tape.
Tory (not verified)
Manufacture liabilityTue, 06/17/2008 - 17:46
Manufactures should not be responsible for these items as not everyone rides their bikes on road and not everyone rides at night.
I rode mountain bikes, dirt jumps etc. for several years before ever really riding on road. Bells and lights are certainly not needed there. Think someone is going to go to a skatepark and be like... 360, to bell ring nose tap.
Zuzu (not verified)
bellsWed, 06/18/2008 - 02:34
If I get a ticket for not having a bell or lights I will flip out because my bike light was stolen recently and my bell has been stolen TWICE.
biciped (not verified)
dataWed, 06/18/2008 - 11:35
i was ticketed $110 this morning for slowly rolling through a stop sign at a quiet side street intersection in south riverdale. the cop was out of sight in her car around the corner and awaiting to pounce on cyclist prey, while claiming to me that she was trying to save my life. it is infuriating and discouraging that bike safety week focuses on enforcing the law with cyclists rather than clueless motorists. data is needed on number of cyclists ticketed during bike safety week versus number of motorists. i think the comparison would be compelling.
Data at the TCAC meetingsWed, 06/18/2008 - 13:40
The data will be available in hard copy at one of the TCAC meetings. Watch the agendas to see when it will be coming up.
Martin Reis (not verified)
Ticket for rolling though a stop signWed, 06/18/2008 - 14:08
If you would like help in fighting the ticket you got, I will be happy to help you.
Biciped (not verified)
Ticket for rolling through a stop signFri, 06/20/2008 - 09:48
I would appreciate your legal advice Martin!
re dataWed, 06/18/2008 - 13:50
Toronto Cranks . com had some data about the number of bikes vs cars that were ticketed. The numbers were greatly skewed toward the cyclist category in relation to the proportion of each type of vehicle on the road. There are way more cars than bikes on the road, but cyclists ended up getting a similar number of tickets.
Was it a 4-way stop?Wed, 06/18/2008 - 16:59
I'm curious to know if they would go as far as targeting cyclists rolling through a 4-way stop.
biciped (not verified)
Yes, it was a 4-way stop!!Fri, 06/20/2008 - 09:39
Yes, it was a 4-way stop!! I took pictures of the intersection today, and since the stop sign is mostly covered by tree branches, the pictures should prove helpful in defending my case in court.
zora (not verified)
me too, ticketed todayWed, 06/18/2008 - 18:37
Today I was also pulled over and given a ticket by a police agent on St. George North of College. They are always at St.George either N or South of College targeting cyclists.
I went to 137 Edward St. Court House to challeng the ticket and wait for my day in court...
Tory (not verified)
enforcing the most minor and uselessWed, 06/18/2008 - 20:20
seee, I think this is stupid. slowing for a stop sign is perfectly fine and ticketing stuff like this will just piss - people - off !
Jonathan (not verified)
The war against cyclistsThu, 06/19/2008 - 20:45
I got the same thing the other night. Instead of taking my car out, I went by bike to my baseball game. I was riding on a residential street, and did the same thing...slowed up as I approached the stop sign (and it was a 4 way stop), when I got close enough to see there was no other car in sight (except of course the cop car who was staying hidden), I rolled through. They gave me a ticket, stating it was for my own safety...and they also added on another because I did not have a bell on my bike. Personally, I feel that the bells are a total waste...I can yell louder than the bells.
There are two things that really got to me about this. The first being that I chose to ride my bike (around 25km round trip) to do my part to help reduce the pollution in the city. It took the officers (2 by the way, not just one) somewhere between 20 and 30 minutes to write me my tickets. The whole time, they left their engine idling.
The second was summed up by one of the officers parting words to me. It wasn’t ride safely, or something along those lines. He just reinforced that they had this campaign going on, so make sure I didn’t do something to get a ticket again.
So to sum up my experience, I’m definitely fighting my tickets, and in the future I’ll think twice before I take my bike. If the idea of their campaign against bikes is to have more people take their cars and reduce the number of bikes on the road, it just may have worked with me…there’s a lot less hassle with my car…the police don’t bother motorists for petty things.
Physics Related ProposalThu, 06/19/2008 - 13:14
Maybe instead of having a stop sign, they should say that your momentum should be below a certain threshold to pass through the intersection. They could tweak it so that cars would basically have to stop, but bikes could roll through. To enforce it, the police could carry scales in their trunks so that they could weigh you, then multiply your mass by your velocity and compare it to the momentum limit.
It would be more fair to factor in elasticity somehow, but that would probably be too complicated for most traffic cops, lawyers and judges. Are there any people who know enough about physics to chime in here?
Anonymous (not verified)
Momentum LawTue, 06/24/2008 - 22:15
I love the momentum idea. A bike's w/ person has such low momentum rolling through a stop sign at 15km/h. I know that people driving cars only slow down to that speed at times, and their momentum is roughly 20 times ours, far more dangerous.
Nerd!Thu, 06/19/2008 - 14:53
As someone who works in field that is only slightly less nerdy than actuarial math, I'm allowed to say that.
Jen (not verified)
Where were the policeThu, 06/19/2008 - 23:03
Where were the police tonight on my ride home as a cab (with a very belligerent passenger) forced me off the road so he could whiz by the streetcar and run a red light? Or when a van passed close by, and a passenger leaned out and screamed, just to scare the crap out of me? My usually peaceful and rejuvenating ride home was ruined tonight.
Today, my mother in law saw a driver make a careless right turn and nearly plow into a cyclist with a baby...
I fail to see how ticketing cyclists will make us safer in this city.
StopFri, 06/20/2008 - 10:01
To you idiots who are of the opinion that "stop" signs are optional for bicycles...
which part of "stop" do you not get? "stop" means "stop", not slow down! those cops are "preying" on weak, stupid animals who don't behave properly!!!! so you got yours, stupid, next time stop, and it won't cost you $110 and a waste of time fighting a losing battle!!!!
where do ppl get off asking for special treatment because they're on a bike? and why do ppl think making an environmentally friendly decision to ride a bike has anything to do with being an exception to the Highway Traffic Act? ignorant!
I'm sorry, but cyclists that don't obey the laws are not welcome on my streets. I have gone way out of my way to get the experience and skill needed to ride safely, cooperatively, and functionally in traffic, and there is no way I'm going to sit back and let morons like you continue to voice your misguided opinions on this forum without a rebuttal from one cyclist who takes his role as a vehicle operator seriously.
it is infuriating and frustrating for those of us who try to make things better for all cyclists in this Province and city to be continually undermined by clueless miscreants who don't consider themselves vehicle operators. when you get on your bike, you become a vehicle operator. it's not a choice, it's not negotiable. if you don't like it, take a pedicab, take a rickshaw, take the bus, take a taxi, get your mom to drive you, or walk... but if you ride, ride properly, law-abidingly, and think about others around you.
Derek Koops (not verified)
Subjective Application of Highway Traffic Act by PoliceFri, 06/20/2008 - 10:48
The problem is that bicycles are treated in the HTA largely the same as cars when they are not the same as cars and should not be treated the same as cars. 4-way stop signs and 1 way streets in areas that have been put there for "traffic calming" should not apply to bicycles. It should not be possible for municipalities like Mississauga to have stop lights that are only activated by the weight of a car on a sensor so that a bike has to wait forever unless a car pulls up to cause the light to change. Police understand the difference between bicycles and cars and subjectively apply the HTA as is seen fit by the individual officer unless there is a blitz on. I once ran through a red light (safely and after stopping to make sure that there weren't pedestrians or through traffic) and only notice a police car heading the other direction halfway through the intersection and was fortunate enough that that officer turned a blind eye to my offence.
Until the law is updated to reflect the reality of bicycles and motor vehicles requiring diffferent principles of operation, we will be stuck with this subjective and seemingly random application of the law as it is written during blitz periods.
4 Season Cyclist (not verified)
traffic light sensorsSun, 06/22/2008 - 20:15
"... It should not be possible for municipalities like Mississauga to have stop lights that are only activated by the weight of a car on a sensor so that a bike has to wait forever unless a car pulls up to cause the light to change ..."
If a traffic light sensor doesn't detect your vehicle (bicycle) it can be treated as malfunctioning. This is why Toronto is in the process of changing these over to units that will detect all road-legal vehicles. The new ones are indicated by three white circles on the pavement. Stop your bike over these and you will be detected.
With the old ones if the light doesn't change after waiting a reasonable time (measured in minutes, not seconds), you can consider the traffic light is failing to change and treat it like a flashing red. Exactly as you would in a car if the light wasn't ever changing. Wait until the way is clear, then proceed.
4 Season Cyclist (not verified)
re: StopSun, 06/22/2008 - 20:06
All your comments should be applied to motorists, in spades. I agree that cyclists need to obey the HTA, but a cyclist is far less likely than a motorist to cause death or serious injury to another member of the public. The CAR-nage on our roads is almost entirely due to bad behaviour of motorists.
For instance, only 7 percent of motorists routinely stop properly. A high percentage roll through stop signs, and even through red lights if turning right. Few seem to understand or care where they are supposed to stop. They ignore the painted lines and pay no attention to sidewalks if there are no painted lines. Many will stop with their vehicles completely blocking a crosswalk forcing pedestrians to step into traffic.
The emphasis of the bike week safety blitz should be focussed on dangerous motorist behaviour.
Anthill (not verified)
The Law and bicyclesFri, 06/20/2008 - 11:01
I remember, growing up in a Vancouver suburb, the concept of 'courtesy intersections'. None of the side streets near me had stop signs, leaving drivers with the understanding (and the law) that you should slow enough to assess the situation, and negotiate your travel with other road users. Around 1994, courtesy was no longer enough and my entire neighborhood was mined with stop signs.
Bicyclists are in an uncomfortable situation now that roads have been redesigned to suit machines that crush people and each other when they collide. So much for courtesy.
DittoFri, 06/20/2008 - 11:02
We don't expect pedestrians to come to a full stop - legs together three deep breaths look right look left - because we recognize that pedestrians have ample time to look both ways and judge whether or not it's safe to enter an intersection without breaking stride. And it's not like coming to a full stop would be particularly onerous for a pedestrian. Although the HTA treats bicycles as vehicles, in many ways we're closer to pedestrians than to cars and the laws need to recognize that. And unlike for pedestrians, coming to a full stop and starting up again is a lot more work for cyclists. Part of making things better for all cyclists is advocating for changes to laws that don't make sense. I would argue that full stops at 4-way stops is one of them, and that many or most one-way streets need to include a "bicycles excepted" sign.
Sadly, there are plenty of cyclists out there doing stupid and reckless things that the cops should have had lots to keep them busy on real infractions without targeting cyclists rolling through 4-way stops in residential neighbourhoods.
re StopFri, 06/20/2008 - 11:31
I think the debate here is mostly about cyclists being ticketed for doing a "rolling stop" like most cars do. I've seen that many motorists treat stop signs as "slow to 10 or 15 km/h momentarily" signs, so it seems like this isn't exclusively a problem with cyclists.
For example, see Do As I Say, Not As I Do.
stuart (not verified)
this morningFri, 06/20/2008 - 12:45
This morning they were ticketing at the top of john street just north of queen.
I think mentioned this a month ago but I got a ticket for a rolling through a stop sign on Beverley.
I am attempting to document the process of fighting it.
What I have done thus far is outlined here :