'Free' lights given during Cambridge crackdown

Council gift came along with £30 fine

by Tom Henry   January 29, 2010  

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Two weeks after police in York targeted lightless cyclists, the same tactics have been used against riders in Cambridge – but this time they were given 'free' lights.

Dozens of cyclists were stopped during the crackdown by Cambridgeshire police and the city council. Around 64 sets of free lights were given out – along with on-the-spot £30 fines for cycling without lights.

Paul Griffin, strategy officer for the council's safer communities section, told the Cambridge News: "We were happy with how the evenings went.

"We had the chance to speak with a number of cyclists about safe cycling - not just those who were issued with a fine but other cyclists who stopped to find out about the project.

"There is no doubt that these evenings of action ensure the message to get lights on your bike is out widely across Cambridge."

This carrot and stick approach has also been tried in Exeter and in Southend were errant cyclists were offered Bikeability trining, in both cases though the issuing of fixed penalty notices was only used as a last resort.