Cyclist gets $651 ticket

Every once in a while you come across an interesting or odd story. Here is one.

In the city of Montreal, the police started to crackdown on dangerous driving by cyclists. You’ve seen them in any town or city. Going through lights and stop signs, weaving through traffic, etc.

First, I should mention that I am a casual cyclist. While I do believe cyclists have rights, they should not be abused.

Going back to the story, the police stopped a cyclist and handed him a $41 ticket for going through a red light. The cyclist didn’t contest that ticket. But what he decided to do is go back to where he came from a bit and started to warn fellow cyclists that the police were up ahead.

The police noticed that he was doing this and handed him a $651 ticket for obstruction of justice.

As pointed out in the local news, the cyclist will probably end up seeing the ticket quashed because a ruling in local courts a few years back quashed the ticket where a driver of a vehicle warned oncoming vehicles of a speed trap by flashing his lights.

The cyclist tried to get his 15 minutes of so-called fame by claiming that the police were doing this to meet their ticket quotas [it was verified maybe last year that in fact the police did have ticket quotas]. The police claim it is because of the increasing number of injuries involving a cyclist – a 15.9% increase in a year. 80% of those accidents were because cyclists were not compliant with road safety code.

The cyclist shouldn’t have warned others. Why? Because if the other cyclists would have been stopped, they would of received a “lesson” in safety and maybe saved a life or two in the future.

The police are targeting reckless driving, driving with headphones, driving on the wrong side of the road, lack of reflectors, etc. [The city has no requirement to wear a helmet.]

In my driving – either as a cyclist or in a vehicle – I have seen some of the most dangerous bike driving.

Luckily it was a quiet street, I saw a kid biking in the middle of the road with headphones on and no helmet [in the area where the biking took place, a helmet is required]. I was driving him in the same direction and he didn’t hear my first honk. In another area, a father not wearing a helmet but a young child behind him was. Another time, two kids on a seat made for one.

I’ve also seen cyclists who drive like they are driving a vehicle by weaving around or then using a left only turn lane to turn left. Even with the increase of bike paths in the city, I’ve seen cyclists not use them – one I saw was biking on one side of the street when there was a bike path on the other side.

I wear a helmet. It is required for my area. I believe that even if there is a chance to save a life by wearing one it is a good investment. My bike has reflectors [plus I have one on my leg as a strap]. I obey biking rules by sticking near the sidewalk. I also avoid streets that are already tight for two lanes for vehicles [i.e. not quite 2 lanes].

I only wish some cyclists would be smart and avoid busy streets as well.

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About ebraiter
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