NYC’s Even-Handed Approach to Enforcement

cyclist in NYC www.pedbikeimages.org / Laura Sandt

Cyclist in New York City, courtesy of www.pedbikeimages.org / Laura Sandt

New York City is stepping? up the ticketing of cyclists who break basic traffic rules, including those who run red lights. As the city’s transportation commissioner notes, the city has been friendly to cyclists by adding miles and miles of bike lanes. Now, she says, it’s time for cyclists to be friendlier to the city.

The law is simple: cyclists have the same rights AND responsibilities on the road as motorists. That means stopping for red lights and stop signs and riding with traffic, among other things.

New York also is focusing on getting motorists to obey the speed limit. (It’s 30 mph.) That makes the roads safer for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians. Here’s a sobering statistic from the transportation commissioner: “If you are a pedestrian and you are hit by a car at 40 miles per hour, there’s a 70 percent chance that you will die. If you’re a pedestrian hit by a car at 30 miles per hour, there’s an 80 percent chance that you will live.?

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