Police stopped dozens of cyclists in Bristol, England, this morning as part of a crackdown aimed at stopping riders flouting traffic laws.
The Evening Post newspaper reported that officers took the details of more than 90 people in a two-hour operation at the junction of busy Gloucester Road and Zetland Road.
Cyclists were pulled over after they were caught riding past red lights and on pavements. Their details will be recorded on the police anti-social behaviour database. If stopped again, they could be given on-the-spot fines of £30 for reckless cycling.
Avon and Somerset police said the operation was sparked by complaints from the public about cyclists’ behaviour. They said they had identified five hotspots around the city and were planning regular patrols over the next few months.
The other four hotspots are:
- Junction of Gloucester Road and Muller Road
- Junction of Cheltenham Road, Ashley Road and Jamaica Street
- A37 in Totterdown by the junction with St John’s Lane
- North Street, Bedminster
Some 25 accidents at the Zetland Road junction involving cyclists have been reported in the past two years. Chief Inspector Andy Bennett, who led the operation, told the Evening Post: “This is in response to complaints from the public. The accidents recorded are only the ones which have been reported, so there are probably even more, and it is clear that these are real problem areas. We are prepared to take forceful action to stop this from happening and hopefully it will make the whole environment safer for everyone.
“There needs to be a change of culture – as we stand, red traffic lights mean you have to stop and there is no leeway on that, either for motorists or cyclists. Lots of cyclists hide behind the fact that they have no training, so it’s important that they realise how important it is to stick to the traffic laws.”
John Roy, the Bristol City Council officer leading the project, said: “Riding through red lights is dangerous for everyone and does nothing to ease the tension between cyclists and drivers. There are a few cyclists in the city who make life really difficult for the rest of them. There’s got to be an understanding among the cycling community that they are part of the road using group and they have to obey the law.”