Monday, August 20, 2012

Cyclists Crossing Creeps! Red Light Running Few Fined

Crossing Creeps. Don't be a Crossing Creep!

Cameras catch cyclists running red-light gauntlet, but very few get fined


Cyclist red-light camera
Cyclist caught on red-light camera in Brisbane's CBD. Source: Supplied
RED-light cameras are routinely snapping wayward cyclists but only a handful ever get booked.
Photographs released by the Queensland Police Service under Right to Information laws show red-light cameras do detect cyclists, but they cannot be identified.
Unless the cyclist is caught in the act, the riders escape prosecution that costs other road users a $300 fine plus three demerit points.
In the past six years, an average of only 220 cyclists a year have been caught running red lights despite photographic evidence the offence happens much more frequently.
"We often see it, it's like they're playing russian roulette," State Traffic Support Branch Chief Superintendent Bob Gee said.
"Cyclists and pedestrians couldn't be more vulnerable on the road. It's just not worth the risk."
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He said red-light camera activation depended on "a cyclist's position on the road and a whole range of other factors".
Cyclist red-light camera
Cyclist caught on red-light camera at Mount Gravatt.
Ben Wilson from Bicycle Queensland said some US states now allowed cyclists to go through red lights, on a "stop, check and go" basis.
"It's not a policy we're advocating at this stage, but the future could be very different," Mr Wilson said.
"I think we need to research whether there is a safety advantage in allowing people to proceed with caution."
He said some cyclists argued it was their only choice at red lights that "never go green".
"Some lights don't pick up the pressure of a bicycle," Mr Wilson said. "The other thing is, a bicycle can feel very vulnerable in the middle of a lane on the road. If a cyclist is rear-ended, the result can be fatal."
Data provided by Transport and Main Roads showed in the six years since 2005, 1327 cyclists were fined for running red lights, and another 292 nabbed ignoring stop signs.
Cyclist red-light camera
Cyclist caught on red-light camera at East Brisbane
Riders are more likely to be booked for failing to wear a helmet, with an average of 6500 fined each year, or not having the proper lights and equipment with 1673 offences.
Chief Supt Gee said police expected cyclists to obey the road rules, just like any other road user.

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