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Friday, August 26, 2011

Toronto Police "Cycle Right" Campaign

The Toronto Police are currently conducting a "Cycle Right" campaign. Police officers are ticketing cyclists who are not in compliance with the Ontario Highway Traffic Act. (They're probably doing it to make Rob Ford happy.) The HTA states that bicycles need:

* A steady white light on the front of the bicycle and a red rear light or reflector if you ride between half an hour before sunset and half an hour after sunrise, and at any time when your bicycle is not visible from 150 metres or less.

* Rear brake capable of skidding the rear wheel on dry, level pavement.

* A bell, gong or horn in good working order.

* A strip of white reflective tape on the front forks and red reflective tape on the rear forks - each strip no less than 250 millimetres in length and 25 millimetres long and 25 millimetres wide.

The fines range from $35 for "improper bicycle lighting", $110 for having no horn or bell, $325 for failing to stop at a red light and $490 for careless driving.

See the full list of fines at toronto.ca/cycling/pdf/hta.pdf

No word yet on whether the Toronto Police will ever conduct an operation to catch bicycle thieves using GPS tracking devices by deliberately planting bicycles in high theft areas.



Motorists who block bicycle lanes with their vehicles endanger cyclists by forcing them to suddenly merge with motor vehicle traffic. The fine for illegally blocking the bike lane is $60. The City of Toronto Bylaws for Bike Lanes are in Chapter 886 of the Toronto Municipal Code.

If you see a vehicle illegally blocking a bike lane you can call 416-808-6600 to alert the Toronto Police's Parking enforcement division, so that they can dispatch an officer to ticket the offender. (Be helpful, tell them the car's license plate # too.)

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