Fines for cyclists who flout traffic rules doubled to $150
Transport Ministry accepts recommendations made by panel, including not requiring licences for cyclists
Cyclists caught flouting traffic rules will have to pay a $150 fine from Jan 1 next year, up from $75 now.
The composition fine will apply to those who break existing rules while on the road, including not stopping at red lights and cycling on expressways.
It will also apply under a new rule that caps the size of cycling groups at five cyclists in a single file or 10 cyclists when riding abreast from Jan 1 next year.
The Ministry of Transport (MOT) announced the increased fine yesterday, after it accepted all the recommendations made by the Active Mobility Advisory Panel on measures to improve road safety.
In its report submitted to MOT on Oct 1, the panel said capping cycling groups to a maximum length of five bicycles will ensure the space that they occupy on the roads is similar to that of a bus.
The panel also proposed that the Government not require cyclists to get licensed or to have bicycles registered at this juncture. The panel had made several other recommendations, such as introducing guidelines to get cycling groups to keep a distance of about 30m from one another on roads. It called for a guideline for motorists to keep a minimum distance of 1.5m when passing cyclists.
In addition, the panel - which was tasked by the Government to look into regulations for on-road cycling after a debate erupted online in April over rule-breaking cyclists - also said cyclists should be strongly encouraged to get third-party liability insurance.
MOT said it will step up enforcement against errant motorists and on-road cyclists.
For more serious cases, a cyclist may be fined up to $1,000 as well as jailed for up to three months for the first offence.
MOT said the Government will continue to partner stakeholders in its public education and outreach efforts, to raise public awareness and enhance clarity of new rules and guidelines.
During a virtual interview yesterday, Senior Minister of State for Transport Chee Hong Tat said the Land Transport Authority has taken enforcement action against more than 500 cyclists who flouted rules on roads this year.
On whether introducing only one new rule - on cycling group sizes - would be enough to improve road safety, Mr Chee noted that the lack of compliance is sometimes due to people not being aware.
Introducing more rules would make compliance more difficult, he said. "Because when the rules are too complex... that will not help the outcome."
Ms Megan Kinder, president of cycling club Anza Cycling, said the cap on group sizes should be a guideline, rather than a rule warranting a fine when breached.
On the increased fines, Ms Kinder said: "The increased penalty for errant cyclists may work if there is on-the-spot enforcement. But at the same time, there should be equal weight placed on penalties, deterrents and enforcement for errant motorists - particularly in regard to minimum passing requirements, which need to be enshrined in law."