Police and local authority campaign against cycling sinners

| September 24, 2015

What kind of person are you when you bike? Especially Copenhagen is experiencing increasing problems with cyclists who ride like there’s no tomorrow. This week, two campaigns will try to improve cyclists’ behavior in traffic. 

Police fine cyclists who ride agianst traffic on a one-way street

Cycling behavior in Denmark under improvement

Thus this week, two very different measures seek to get people to bike more carefully and considerately. The first is a nationwide campaign by the police seeking to get the cyclists and moped drivers to follow the rules.  The second is a campaign by the Municipality of Copenhagen whose campaign aims to change the behavior and attitude of cyclists in the city.

“Safe Bike city”

With more than 300.000 Copenhageners biking every day, it is no wonder the streets and bike lanes are packed, especially during rush hour. Despite the overall politeness and good behavior of most cyclists in traffic, the Municipality of Copenhagen is now launching the campaign Sikker Cykelby (Safe Bikecity) seeking to teach the Danes better bike manners.

The campaign specifically targets a small group of cyclists who are causing problems for the many. A survey from 2014, shows that more than half of the Copenhageners feel that their fellow cyclists ride irresponsibly. Considering that the main reason people choose not to bike in Copenhagen is because they feel insecure, the campaign makes great sense.

Hej Cyklist

A thanks to all the good riders out there. Photo: Rune Monberg Dalhof

The campaign consists of various posters around the city with messages like “Hi Cyclist! Thank you for riding safely”. The idea is to draw attention to good behavior and encourage people to ride considerately.

Campaigning with fines

The police take different measures. They will through targeted efforts strive to make soft road users follow the rules. Their argument is that soft road users are the most vulnerable group in the traffic, and that some cyclists consistently break the rules.

So, cyclists need to behave because among other things, the police will place policemen down the road or around corner of traffic lights to catch cycling sinners that cross red lights etc. They will also pay special attention to people cycling on pavements and across pedestrian crossings.

According to CEO of Danish Cyclists’ Federation, Klaus Bondam, “the police could have a preventive factor in terms of improving the behavior of cyclists by being more present with cycling police officers”.

In need of more space

With the estimated growth in the amount of cyclists, pressure on decision makers to continuously improve the conditions for cyclists is increasing. The need for the two campaigns are a reflection of problems with too little space for cycling.  This problem is the Municipality of Copenhagen trying to solve via its Plus Net which has wider cycle tracks than usual for instance.

Further information

Cycling Sinners

A popular place to cross red lights. Photo: Rune Monberg Dalhof

A recent study by the Danish Cyclists’ Federation and IS IT A BIRD,  both members of the Cycling Embassy of Denmark shows that pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists alike experience cyclists’ behavior as problematic. But cyclists’ behavior is a complex problem, and the solutions are manifold.

 Read more about the study on cyclists’ behavior here: http://www.cycling-embassy.dk/2015/06/22/new-study-on-cyclist-behaviour/


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Category: Campaigns, Safety

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