800 tickets issued during cycling safety blitz

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More than 800 tickets were issued for aggressive driving during a week-long blitz in June aimed at increasing safety for cyclists on city streets.

The “safety for cyclists” campaign ran from June 17 to 23. Officers asked drivers to be alert and prepared to share the road with vulnerable road users.

Police issued a total of 1,617 Highway Traffic Act tickets that week and the vast majority were against drivers, according to Sgt. Brett Moore, spokesperson for Toronto police’s traffic services unit.

Sgt. Brett Moore says the campaign combined what he called zero tolerance law enforcement to target drivers who commit offences and community engagement to heighten awareness of the dangers that cyclists face daily.

Moore said police conducted the campaign because cycling has become extremely popular in Toronto, not only for recreational purposes, but also as a means of transportation.

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Officers were on the lookout for drivers who were speeding, driving while distracted, driving while impaired and driving aggressively. In addition to issuing tickets, officers engaged in conversations with motorists and cyclists about such topics as bike lanes and vehicles parking in bike lanes, Moore added.

Police talked to drivers and cyclists as well about how to register a bicycle with police and the phenomenon of “dooring.” Dooring occurs when a cyclist is hit by an opening car door.

Moore said the work of enforcing the rules and educating drivers about bike safety occurs every single day, but a campaign focuses the “collective energy of the police” on a single topic. -CINEWS

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  1. Use your far hand to open the latch when exiting your car to avoid dooring cyclists or getting your door taken off or damaged in a dooring collision with another vehicle. Using your far hand makes you turn outward to the side mirror and easily do a shoulder aka head check back. It prevents you from flinging the door open suddenly, and it positions you to exit facing oncoming traffic – which is safer for you too.