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Cyprus cyclists to be fined for taking hands off handlebars

List of punishable cycling offences proposed by government is astounding - but doesn't include helmet law...

Cyclists in Cyprus are appealing for a new law that would require them to keep both hands on the handlebars to be postponed for a re-think.

The Cyprus Cycling Federation has asked that the bill be held back for amendments, saying that while it is fine in spirit, the details may deter people from cycling.

The bill, aimed at promoting safety among motorists and cyclists, introduces penalties for a number of offences, among them, cycling without both hands on the handlebars unless indicating, cycling in pedestrian areas, towing objects by bike or holding a pet on a lead while cycling. Giving a passenger a lift on a bike is also outlawed.

Other measures deal with motorists who park in bike lanes and traffic law contraventions.

Discussion on the bill at the House transport committee concluded on Thursday and it now goes to the plenum for a vote on April 14, the last day of the current parliament, where it is most likely to pass unanimously, the committee’s chair Antonis Antoniou told the Cyprus Mail.

If so, the new law will come into effect from October 1.

On-the-spot fines could range from €25 to €85, with court hearings and higher penalties for repeat offenders.

A €50 fine is proposed for leaving an object in a bike lane, failing to use lights at night or ignoring traffic signs.

A cyclist being towed by another vehicle will get a €25 fine.

A driver who fails to ‘adjust his car’s speed and course to facilitate cyclists’, or who parks on a bicycle lane, faces an €85 fine.

The same applies for drivers whose road behaviour disrupts the course of a cyclist, and who do not give priority to cyclists where necessary.

One measure not covered by the bill is the use of bike helmets, although the committee said it might revisit the issue.

The Cyprus Cycling Federation said that with a few amendments, “it can be a great tool toward the growth of cycling in Cyprus, but also to  attract athletes on the island”.

For instance, a spokesman said, there is a provision which stipulates that in the case of four or more people cycling together, they should do so in pairs.

“This is not possible for training athletes, or in cases of group cycling.”

“This means that people will risk being fined daily”, he said, “and it will result in discouraging people from cycling, quite the opposite of what this bill aims to do”.

The Federation is also calling for presumed liability, in order to protect cyclists who are hit by motorists.

“This is a basic tool which has proven to be very effective in other countries, as it creates road awareness,” he said.

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11 comments

Avatar
DaveE128 | 7 years ago
0 likes

So if you're riding a bike with downtube shifters in cyprus, you now have a singlespeed?

Clearly this set of rules has not only not been thought through properly, it hasn't been thought about at all.

It seems to me that before you ban anything, you should try to think of all the legitimate reasons that you might do it, (ask the people most likely to be affected for starters) and also make serious effort to assess whether the banned thing actually has a significant negative impact, which should include analysis of stats. It seems that neither of these has been done here. It would appear to be 100% knee jerk. Cyprus should be ashamed of it's government.

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fixit | 7 years ago
0 likes

human beigns cycle in cycprus? and if they do, some of them, they make laws about them? and if they do they enforce them, while they don't enforce millions of other laws more important!!??

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velo-nh | 7 years ago
0 likes

Nice clickbait combo of a picture that is irrelevant to the article and a headline that makes it sound like the people in the picture are being fined.

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giff77 | 7 years ago
1 like

Ron and fluffy. Read the article again. Hands can be removed to indicate. You'll find there's been a number of crashes due to no hand riding and the authorities are reacting to this in true authoritarian style.

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ron611087 replied to giff77 | 7 years ago
2 likes
giff77 wrote:

Ron and fluffy. Read the article again. Hands can be removed to indicate. You'll find there's been a number of crashes due to no hand riding and the authorities are reacting to this in true authoritarian style.

You're right , I never read properly. My assumption was that they were banning no hand riding, meaning both hands off the bar.  Including one hand off the bar is laughable, wiping you nose would become a criminal offence?

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tommy2p replied to ron611087 | 7 years ago
0 likes
ron611087 wrote:
giff77 wrote:

Ron and fluffy. Read the article again. Hands can be removed to indicate. You'll find there's been a number of crashes due to no hand riding and the authorities are reacting to this in true authoritarian style.

You're right , I never read properly. My assumption was that they were banning no hand riding, meaning both hands off the bar.  Including one hand off the bar is laughable, wiping you nose would become a criminal offence?

Yes, and so will dipping your lights whilst moving 

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FluffyKittenofT... | 7 years ago
2 likes

"keep both hands on the handlebars "

So no hand signals then?

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ron611087 | 7 years ago
1 like
Quote:

Giving a passenger a lift on a bike is also outlawed.  

What makes this risky is a flaw in the infrastructure not a flaw in the act of doing it. In the Netherlands average bike occupancy is greater than one and their safety is at least three time better than most countries so there's enough evidence to show this is true.

I'm indifferent to the law penalising cyclists for no hands on the bars. I don't know if Cyprus is any different to the UK but can't remember when I last saw a cyclist doing this. I don't think it will deter people from cycling as a helmet law would. The only difference it will make is the space it occupies in the law book.

Some of the other proposals are sensible.

Avatar
wycombewheeler replied to ron611087 | 7 years ago
1 like
ron611087 wrote:
Quote:

Giving a passenger a lift on a bike is also outlawed.  

What makes this risky is a flaw in the infrastructure not a flaw in the act of doing it. In the Netherlands average bike occupancy is greater than one and their safety is at least three time better than most countries so there's enough evidence to show this is true.

I'm indifferent to the law penalising cyclists for no hands on the bars. I don't know if Cyprus is any different to the UK but can't remember when I last saw a cyclist doing this.

One hand is also not allowed. So no bidons.

Carrying passengers on the road is quite different to on cyclepaths

Avatar
ron611087 replied to wycombewheeler | 7 years ago
0 likes
wycombewheeler wrote:

One hand is also not allowed. So no bidons.

That's crazy, it would ban hand signaling , which is downright dangeous.

wycombewheeler wrote:

Carrying passengers on the road is quite different to on cyclepaths

Which is why I said it's a flaw in the infrastructure, not the act of doing it.

Avatar
patto583 replied to ron611087 | 7 years ago
1 like
Quote:

The bill, aimed at promoting safety among motorists and cyclists, introduces penalties for a number of offences, among them, cycling without both hands on the handlebars unless indicating, cycling in pedestrian areas, towing objects by bike or holding a pet on a lead while cycling. Giving a passenger a lift on a bike is also outlawed. 

Towing objects by bike? so no bob trailers for touring then?

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