Toronto’s Zero-Tolerance Bicycle Blitz

Update: see previous post.

Last year, between June 9 and 22, 2009,  Toronto Police conducted a campaign which they named “Cycle Right“. The campaign was designed to educate cyclists about the consequences of aggressive driving on their bikes and to follow the traffic laws in place. Apparently Police laid over 2,200 charges and cautioned approximately 800 cyclists. See the 2008 results of the Toronto Police Bicycle Safety Blitz.

Toronto Police Services “54 Division” officers conducted a campaign called “Safe Cycling“. It began on September 3, 2009 at 7:00 a.m. at the Broadview Avenue and Danforth Avenue intersection, where officers were observed handing out safe cycling pamphlets to cyclists. The campaign’s objective was to promote awareness and education and reducing cycle-related injuries. Officers stationed at 54 Division wants to remind motorists of the dangers of opening car doors (on the driver’s side and passenger side) in the path of moving cyclists and the importance of checking blind spots before making a right hand turn (which is where most collisions occur). The campaign started on September 3, 2009 and finished on September 29, 2009.

This morning, at 8 a.m., Toronto Police will commence a bicycle safety blitz concentrated at the intersection of Danforth Avenue and Broadview Ave. This week long campaign by police is focusing in on “enforcement” as opposed to promoting awareness or education.

Last year at this time, there were 72 collisions between bicycles and motor vehicles. This year there have been 54 collisions involving bicycles and motor vehicles.

Police will be ticketing bicyclists for any offence observed being committed (either a violation of the Highway Traffic Act or a violation of any City of Toronto Bylaw). If a bicyclist with a wheel base  that exceeds 61 centimetres (or 24 inches) is observed riding on the sidewalk, he/she will receive a ticket. If during darkness, a bicyclist is observed riding his or her bicycle without a light on his or her bicycle they will receive a ticket.

This week long,  zero- tolerance bicyle campaign in the Danforth Avenue/Broadview Avenue area, will be conducted by police in their 54 Division and 55 Division’s.

In the Safe Cycling Campaign (Sept.3-29/09) Police reported that upon conclusion of that campaign, that they had handed out 49 tickets to cyclists for having no bell or horn, 40 tickets to cyclists for having no lights and 38 tickets to cyclists for riding on the sidewalk. Here are the associated fines for those tickets mentioned:

1. Offence: No bell (horn) – bicycle, section 75 (5) of the Highway Traffic Act:
A $20.00 Fine + a $5.00 Court Cost + a $10.00 Victim Fine Surcharge = $35.00 Total Amount Payable

2. Offence: Improper Bicycle Lighting, section 62 (17) of the Highway Traffic Act (lighting is necessary when a bicyclist is operating their bicycle 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):
An $85.00 Fine + a $5.00 Court Cost + a $20.00 Victim Fine Surcharge = $110.00 Total Amount Payable

3. Offence: No person shall ride a bicycle across a roadway within or along a crosswalk at an intersection or at a location other than an intersection which location is controlled by a traffic control signal system. Section 144 (29) of the Highway Traffic Act.
An $85.00 Fine + a $5.00 Court Cost + a $20.00 Victim Fine Surcharge = $110.00 Total Amount Payable

To view bicycle fines and the related sections of the Highway Traffic Act, go to the following link.

Update: January 5, 2010 – Commuter Cycling by Census tract

Update: April 23, 2010 – Bike messenger receives a $325.00 ticket when she travels through a red light on her bike.

Update: May 16, 2010 Grinder quickly cuts bicycle Kryptonite lock into pieces

Update: June 10, 2010 – What are the rules about Drinking and Biking?

Update:  July 25, 2010 – 16 Year Old Cyclist in Owen Sound charged with Careless Driving after he was allegedly text messaging and riding his bike and involved in an accident with the rear of a parked vehicle and the parked vehicle’s rear window. This isn’t the first time a bicyclist has been charged with careless driving. Daniel Rosier, 25, was estimated to have been travelling at 15mph when his bike came into contact with 13-year-old boy, causing cuts and bruises. He was charged with careless driving, convicted of same, received a criminal record and was granted a 12-month conditional discharge and ordered to pay £75 in compensation to the boy and £60 in costs.

Update: August 9, 2010 – Cyclists can now take Bike Train from Toronto to Lake Muskoka

Update: August 17, 2010 – A Hamilton motorcyclist was found riding his bike without any pants on. When approached by Police, he attempted to flee. Despite his nudity, the pants-free rider was not charged with indecent exposure. The man faces several charges, including flight from police, dangerous driving and failing to wear a helmet.

Update: August 16, 2010 – A Blueprint for Bicycling in Mississauga.

Update: August 17, 2010 – Mississauga Cycles Back From Sprawl.

Update: August 17, 2010 – Cyclist Challenges City of Toronto to Fill in the Gaps

Update: January 7, 2010 – City to build curbs for separate bike lanes downtown.

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  5. Hi Pamela: In response to your comment, you may want to look at another post which breaks down these issues in a much more specific itemized format. See the following post: , which breaks downs pedestrian and cyclist’s offences:

    Tickets that will be Issued to Pedestrians/Cyclists

    Laws that will most likely result in tickets being issued to Pedestrians & Cyclists: (Listed in this order: Offence, section of the Highway Traffic Act & fine-see August 1, 2010 schedule 43):

    # Pedestrian fail to yield at crossover – s. 140(4) – $35.00 fine
    # Pedestrian fail to use cross-walk – s. 144(22)- $35.00 fine
    # Pedestrian disobey flashing green light -s.144(24)- $35.00 fine
    # Pedestrian disobey red light -s.144(25)- $35.00 fine
    # Pedestrian disobey amber light -s.144(25)- $35.00 fine
    # Pedestrian disobey “don’t walk” signal -s.144(29)- $35.00 fine
    # Solicit a ride -s.177(1) – $50.00 fine
    # Person – attach to vehicle -s.178(4) – $85.00 fine
    # Person – attach to streetcar -s.178(4) – $85.00 fine
    # Pedestrian fail to walk on left side of highway – s.179 – $35.00 fine
    # Pedestrian on roadway fail to keep to left edge-s.179 – $35.00 fine
    # Litter Highway – s.180 – $85.00 fine

    Cyclists: (NSF= $ No Set Fine) (HTA = Highway Traffic Act)
    # Permit person under 16 on power-assisted bicycle -s.38(2) – NSF
    # Improper brakes on motor-assisted bicycle – s.64(2) – $85.00 fine
    # Improper brakes on power-assisted bicycle – s.64(2) – $85.00 fine
    # Improper brakes on bicycle – s.64(3) – $85.00 fine
    # No horn – motor-assisted bicycle – s.75(5) – $85.00 fine
    # No horn – bicycle – s.75(5) – $85.00 fine
    # Defective horn – motor-assisted bicycle – s.75(5) – $85.00 fine
    # Defective horn – bicycle – s.75(5) – $85.00 fine
    # Fail to wear proper helmet on power-assisted bicycle:
    section 103.1(2) of the HTA – $85.00 fine
    # Fail to wear proper helmet on motor-assisted bicycle:
    section 104(1) of the HTA – $85.00 fine
    # Carry passenger under 16 not wearing proper helmet:
    section 104(2) of the HTA – $85.00 fine
    # Fail to wear proper helmet on bicycle – s.104(2.1) – $60.00 fine
    # Permit person under 16 not wearing proper helmet on bicycle:
    section 104(2.2) of the HTA – $60.00 fine
    # Cyclist – ride in crossover – s.140(6) – $85.00 fine
    # Improper arm signal – s.142(4) – $85.00 fine
    # Cyclist – ride in or along crosswalk – s.144(29)- $85.00 fine
    # Bicycle – fail to turn out to right when overtaken:
    section 148(6) of the HTA – $85.00 fine
    # Bicyle – fail to turn out to right when overtaken-community safety zone:
    section 148(6) of the HTA – $120.00 fine
    # Motor assisted bicycle – fail to turn out to right when overtaken:
    section 148(6) of the HTA – $85.00 fine
    # Motor assisted bicyle-fail to turn out to right when overtaken – community safety zone – section 148(6) of the HTA – $120.00 fine
    # Pass street car improperly (applies all forms of bicycles and motor vehicles and horses) every rider or driver must stay back at least 2 metres (2 meters = 6.56167979 feet) from the front/back door of the streetcar until all passengers get on/get off and the doors are closed. If you move up before the doors close, you’ll be ticketed. – s.166(1) – $85.00 fine ($150.00 fine in a community safety zone)
    # Approach open streetcar door too closely (applies to all forms of bicycles, motor vehicles and horses) every rider or driver must stay back at least 2 metres (6.56167979 feet) from the front/back street car doors – s.166(2) – $85.00 fine ($150 fine in a community safety zone)
    # Frighten Animal (applies to a motor-assisted bicycle and motor vehicles) every driver or rider must control their motor vehicle or their motor assisted bicycle, so as to exercise every reasonable precaution to prevent the frightening of the horse or other animal. This is to prevent the animal and or those around the animal from being injured or worse – s.167 – $85.00 fine ($120.00 fine in a community safety zone)
    # Ride two (2) on a bicycle – s.178(2) – $85.00 fine
    # Ride another on a motor-assisted bicycle – s.178(3) – $85.00 fine
    # Cyclist – Fail to Stop – s.218(2) – $85.00 fine
    # Cyclist – Fail to Identify Self – s.218(2) – $85.00 fine

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