- Jonathan W. Gray/ @elmcitytree c/o gothamist.com
- This is everything that Citibike haters said would happen.
The Daily News reports that, in the month since Citibike launched, the NYPD has issues hundreds more tickets to cyclists in New York. We’d like to hope that one was given out to the rider in the picture above who, Gothamist reported, steered her bike onto the CAR LEVEL DURING RUSH HOUR. As Gothamist notes, the fact that it was rush hour might have, you know, saved her life, because “traffic on the bridge was somewhat subdued” but still. This is unbelievably dangerous and that is the kind of cycling behavior that makes weird, angry old people who don’t understand what totalitarianism means hate Citibike. Anyway! Tickets.
The News reports, “The number of tickets issued to cyclists for breaking the rules of the road has skyrocketed since the May 27 launch of Citi Bike, police statistics reveal. In the 12 Manhattan precincts with Citi Bike stations, police issued 484 tickets to cyclists as of Sunday. That’s up 7% from the same period last year.
But in the four Brooklyn precincts with Citi Bike stations, plus three neighboring precincts, the number of tickets handed out soared from 282 to 510 — an 81% increase.” (emphasis mine, because, whoa, that’s a lot more tickets in Brooklyn!) And these tickets are not just the measly $25 tickets you get for having an open container of alcohol in the streets, running a red light on your bike can cost you $190.
It seems pretty clear that the NYPD is using the fact that there are more cyclists—a lot of them new riders—than ever on the road to make a little extra money by ticketing cycling scofflaws. However, there’s really no excuse for not following at least the basic rules of the road (especially NO RIDING ON THE SIDEWALK), because the rules are printed right on the Citibike, making it impossible to claim ignorance. So, you know, beware of cops out there, but also, don’t ride like an idiot. It could wind up costing you a lot of money.
Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen