Bike Bedlam: NYPD Goes After Bad Bicyclists

NEW YORK (CBS 2) — You’ve seen them whizzing by, taking over the roads and the sidewalks, some of them even steering around traffic laws and terrorizing pedestrians: Bicyclists going rogue.

But not for long, as the NYPD is now cracking down on these bad bicyclists.

As New York City goes green, the city has seen an influx of those who choose a bicycle as their mode of transportation. While it may be good for the environment, it’s not so for New York City residents. Between relatively new bikers who don’t know the rules and experienced riders who just flagrantly ignore them, biking has become the number one quality of life concern in some parts of New York City.

“You do think you can go as quick as possible on a bike in New York City,” said Lower East Side resident Nitin Rai. “You can just weave through the traffic and zip around.”

Between July and August, the city issued 360 summonses – over 100 more than the month before – for reckless offenses from nearly mowing down pedestrians, to blowing off traffic signals.

“I think it’s very dangerous,” said Mamadou Ndiaya, who works in Manhattan. “I see them, almost every day, knockouts.”

Despite efforts by police to go tough on wild bikers, some residents say it’s not enough.

“I make a wrong turn [in a car] and I get a $90 ticket and points on my license,” said resident Kate Halpern. “Nothing’s happening to these guys.”

Trina Tuxen says she is a responsible biker, and rides into Manhatten every day from Williamsburg. But she does admit she’s never bothered to learn the rules of the road.

“I look at the other bicyclists,” she said. “And do whatever they do.”

Roughly 14 miles of Manhattan have designated bike lanes, but even on streets where they are clearly marked, bikers don’t always use them.

Police now warn that those who ignore the laws will pay the price.

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  • mateo

    your coverage on the topic is terrible. grow up.

  • Anti-Cyclist Hate-Mongers: Part 1: “Journalism” That Isn’t « Bikezilla

    […] the “journalist” on the CBS post says that tickets to law-breaking cyclists are up by a considerable margin, but also makes it […]

  • Safe Sidewalk Cyclst

    It is possible for bicyclists and pedestrians and cars, taxis, buses, hansom cabs, motorcycles, scooters, mopeds, segways, firetrucks, delivery trucks, earth-movers, derreks. pushcarts. wheelchairs, even cop cars to coexist, share the roads, sidewalks etc. Common courtesy is the way and that can’t be legislated. It is beneath CBS News to engage in fear-mongering and sensationalism on this pathetic level, or should be. What would Walter think of this week of reports?

  • Cassarit

    Two Thoughts

    1) Someone should crack down on the NYPD, the most corrupt pack of thugs in the USA.

    2) If you see this bozo ram him.

  • Nyawker

    Why is it, when cyclists are shown breaking the law, that other cyclists immediately go into denial about this bad behavior ever taking place, and start screaming about “anti-cyclists!”

    It’s this kind of denial BS that wins cyclists no friends, and underscores their arrogance and immaturity. Good grief, GROW UP!

    • Safe Sidewalk Cyclst

      Why is it that you lie on your taxes then go into denial about this bad behavior ever taking place? This kind of denial BS wins you no friends and underscores your arrogance and immaturity in failing to understand nuisance where it is called for. A cyclist coming upon a red light where there are no cars or people harms no one by continuing on her way. The world is not black and white. Good grief, GROW UP!

      • Nyawker

        See what I mean?

  • bikezilla

    So what exactly is the story? All I see is “I hate cyclists, so they need too SUFFER!”

    Is CBS really an entire network of cyclephobes?

    Kind of silly, in a sad and pathetic sort of way.

  • Jeff

    “Biking has become the number one quality of life concern in some parts of New York City.” Really?! I WANT TO LIVE THERE! Think there are many more serious quality of life concerns to worry about, whatever “part” of NYC you live in.

  • Eric

    Wow. issuing summons for “nearly mowing down pedestrians” but kill a pedestrian with a car while sober and you won’t even get a ticket.

  • Chris

    A 2000lb automobile is a much more deadly weapon than a 20lb bicycle with a person on it, period. Many many many more prople are killed each year by anutomobiles than cyclists. CBS is absolutley irresposible for airing such propaganda.

  • steve

    CBS is doing a series of anti-cycling segments? Where are their priorities? How about a series about how many pedestrians, cars, trucks and buses mindlessly disregard the bike paths. Maybe more cyclists would obey the laws if their rights were respected even a little. It is true, most of the cyclists flagrantly breaking the laws are commercial delivery guys. Why not fine their employees?

  • Marc

    In the clip above, nearly every single cyclist riding on the sidewalk or going the wrong way is a commercial cyclist (food delivery or messenger). If the city instituted a plan to fine the business for the poor behavior of its employees (and bothered to enforce it) – a lot would change, almost immediately.

    While they’re at it, could the police also get the double-parked cars out of the bike lanes? And stop parking their police cars in them?

  • Marc

    In the clip above, nearly every single cyclist riding on the sidewalk or going the wrong way is a commercial cyclist (food delivery or messenger). If the city instituted a plan to fine the business for the poor behavior of its employees (and bothered to enforce it) – a lot would change, almost immediately.

    • Josh

      I agree 100% with Marc.

  • Ernie

    I always thought CBS was a crappy network. This confirms it. You’ve just lost a viewer, permanently.

  • nasha

    poor journalism. this is one side of a serious issue that nyc must deal with. biking is good for the economy, the environment, and a great way to stay healthy. as a biker, i am dismayed at how the city actually caters to cars, cars, cars………when it should be people, bike and more green space friendly. if there were more spaces for bikes, i think less would be on the sidewalks and riding rogue on the streets. bike lanes next to parked cars is NOT safe for bikers. we become targets to get doored as people are getting out of their cars. on top of the fact that people walk in these lanes all the time, and cars, trucks, and cabs pull into these lanes all the times also. the city is responsible for making the city a safe place. right now it is failing. so little space and the biggest percentage is given to cars, cars, cars.

  • Allen

    CBS? Did the author of this story never learn to ride a bike as a kid and is now getting revenge? Come on, 14 miles of bike lanes in Manhattan. Wow. And how many thousands of miles of roads? It should be a crime if you don’t dart across 5-lane avenues to get into the 6′ wide bike lane? I pray anyone who sees this will get nothing more than a good laugh, then change to a different news source.

  • Louis

    I’m disappointed by the sensationalizing in this “news” segment. “Bike Bedlam”? I would expect to see that on the front page of the Post, but clearly CBS standards of journalism has gone the way of tabloid treatment–and here stoking anti-bicycling sentiments instead of really delving into the whys and hows of dangerous cycling behaviors and presenting possible solutions for viewers and the public officials to ponder over. Even as an editorial, its bias and potential danger in inciting and escalating tension among drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians is deplorable.

  • d

    this is a pretty stupid article. i think that drivers should have to ride a bike in the city for at least a month everyday before they can actually drive in the city to get the real feeling of a car breathing down your neck while riding a bike. why do bikers always get the shaft here? it’s one of the best modes of transportation! Pedestrians are always walking in the bike lane but no ticket for that? if they really want to get money, ticket all the jaywalkers and cars straddling two lanes. then they may even be able to pay for the mta’s deficit.

  • Susan

    Is this journalism? An attack on cyclists–a series!–with only one side of the story told? As a safe cyclist, I see bad behavior by some, but I also see cars cutting me off and pedestrians oblivious–or uncaring–of any but auto traffic, pushing their strollers out into the bike lane while they stare into their Blackberrys. The likely cause of most accidents.

    • Josh

      Yes, this IS journalism !! A good friend of mine’s husband died crossing the street when a careless cyclist mowed into him. At least you are are alive to tell your side of the story; someone else has to tell the dead man’s story.

      • chris

        My father was killed when a careless driver hit him when he was on his bicycle. We have a side of the story too. Journalism is about debate not attacking a certain group.

  • Gomer

    “DRIVERS and JAYWALKING PEDESTRIANS are a much greater hazard to cyclists.”

    TRUE. Peds look at cyclists like they are invisible and walk right in front of a moving bike after making sure there are no cars. Happens to me every day.

    There are some bad cyclists, but many worse drivers and clueless peds.

  • Bike Bedlam? | TUBULOCITY

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  • Hermione Imogen

    DRIVERS and JAYWALKING PEDESTRIANS are a much greater hazard to cyclists. Pedestrians rountinely stand mid-block in the middle of the bike-lane and refuse to move because they’re used to doing whatever they want, forcing cyclists to ride into automobile traffic, putting their lives at risk. Peds don’t realize that bicyclists can fall and be lethally injured …Drivers let their car doors fly open and injure bikers every day, and park in the bike lanes, and turn into them without looking in their rear mirrors. Will the pedestrians get tickets, too?

  • Sally Rogers

    Finally, they are a hazzard and they cause accidents. Riding on sidewalks and riding against traffic. When they get hit they blame the motorist when its actually their own doing.

  • Bill

    this is all BS. Its just another way for the city to close their holes in the budget. Bloomberg runs the city like its his own factory.

    • bikezilla

      Vote with your TV controller when you’re making your viewing selections.

  • UV

    I want to really see how many bad drivers- drivers who park illegally, violate traffic rules, put pedestrians safety in jeopardy, over speed and a host of other things, do the NYPD go after. Oh no they can’t really go after them because in that case half the time they would have to go after themselves too

  • Jim

    As a long time biker, both here in NYC and Chicago, I say it is about time. Bikers on the sidewalk are my buggest pet peeve. I am fine with people who go ont he sidewalk to park the bike, but the ones who continually ride on it block after block are a menace and they give respectful biekers a bad name.

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