Cyclists in the Bristol area may face fixed penalties from Police as a winter cycle safety campaign is launched in a bid to cut the number of road accidents involving cyclists on roads in the area. During the campaign, known as Operation Glitter, anyone caught riding a bicycle after dark without having lights fitted may face a fine of between £30 and £60.
Police say the idea of the campaign is not to penalize people but to educate them about the dangers of cycling in the evening and at night without having lights fitted to their bikes. The good news for those caught for not having lights on their bikes is that they can avoid having to pay the fine, if they buy some lights for their bikes within seven days. As an added incentive, local cycle shops have agreed to offer a 10% discount to anyone buying cycle lights after being caught by the police.
Operation Glitter is run annually during the autumn and winter months in the area and last year saw two cyclists fined £125 after they ignored several warnings from police to get their bikes fitted out to make them more visible to motorists, pedestrians and other cyclists. Speaking to the local press, one of the police officers responsible for running Operation Glitter, Sgt Ian Kennett said,
“Community safety is a key part of this operation. Cyclists without lights can be just as much a danger to others as they are to themselves. It is very hard to see them as the dark evenings draw in, particularly if they don't have lights and are wearing dark clothes. It isn't safe. I would like the public to work with us to help avoid as many accidents as possible. We don't want to fine people; we would prefer people to be safe and seen.”
Staying visible at all times is vitally important when you are out on your bike. Here at MyCyclingClaim, we have dealt with cycling injury compensation claims made by people who have been involved in cycling accidents at night, or in poor visibility conditions. We know that cycle lights and high visibility clothing help to reduce the likelihood that you will be hit by another vehicle. As well as that, if the worst should happen and you are knocked off your bike by a motorist, then the fact that you had lights fitted to your bike will strengthen the case for you to receive cycling accident compensation from the motorist’s insurance policy.