Red Light Tickets
Biking Rules has been hearing from a lot of cyclists with questions about red light tickets. What is the fine? Is it less for bicycles than for cars?
NYC cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as car drivers. This means that cyclists are required by law to stop at red lights, ride with the flow of traffic on one-way and two-way streets and keep crosswalks clear at during red lights at intersections for safe walking.
If you get a ticket for running a red light you will be obligated to pay the same fine that a driver would for the same offense. The red light ticket will be for roughly $230. Cyclists, unlike drivers, do not have to pay the additional surcharge on the ticket. Be sure to take note of this because the DMV will not always amend the fine for you. Cyclists will not have points added to their licenses for running a red light.
Many cyclists think that getting a ticket on a bike is due to some sort of ticket blitz. It's true that NYPD enforcement is selective at best, by virtue of being carried out by a relatively small number of officers on thousands of miles of roadways around the five boroughs. This can lead to ticket blitzes for all sorts of offenses and for all road users. However, if you are ticketed for running a red light, this shouldn't come as a huge surprise.
Intersections are the most contested spaces on NYC streets, with many different users vying for safe space to travel. Intersections are also where most cyclists and pedestrians are injured or killed. Actually, just 10% of the City's intersections account for over 50% of all fatalities and injuries. That is why T.A. is working so hard to improve the safety and predictability of dangerous intersections around the city.
As cyclists we can do a lot to make intersections safer for ourselves and other street users by following traffic signals and yielding to pedestrians. Take a look at the Biking Rules Street Code for some other tips for safe and considerate cycling.
A bicycle will always be the fastest and most convenient way to get around the Big Apple, even when we are following our biking rules.
Submitted by bikingrules on May 19, 2009 - 12:17pm.