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Postscript: Operation Safe Cycle

August 27, 2014

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Margaret Badore at Treehugger asked for my thoughts on Operation Safe Cycle:

It may be too early to know if the enforcement effort will make any impact on the number of cyclist injuries this year. Gordon is doubtful that the average bike commuter will feel any different about their daily bike ride after Operation Safe Cycle. “The streets are going to be exactly the same and they will not have moved the dial with cyclist behavior,” he said. “The problem of scofflaw cycling isn’t going to be solved through periodic crackdowns, it’s going to be solved with infrastructure.”

Operation Safe Cycle officially ended yesterday yet – surprise! – my ride in today felt no safer than any other day. This being the last week before Labor Day, the streets certainly were quieter than normal, but I saw no shortage of “bad” behavior for all kinds of road users. Starting next Thursday, parents will begin clogging bike lanes with their cars as they drop their kids off at school, car services will be back up at full capacity as people return to work, and the streets will be filled with angry drivers who wish they were still on vacation rather than sitting in gridlock. A real Operation Safe Cycle might involve building better infrastructure to give all those drivers more attractive options.

  1. August 27, 2014 12:27 pm

    Cycling behavior crackdowns WILL move the dial on cyclist behavior — they’ll make it worse. Selective enforcement on potential victims that ignores the actual case of danger is not going to make for happy cyclists; at best, you’ll get obnoxious compliance.

  2. August 27, 2014 9:07 pm

    Is there a good reason that the police interceptor is blocking the bike lane?

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