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Brighton cyclist ordered to pay £1,000 for ignoring one-way sign

A cyclist from Brighton has ended up with a bill for more than £1,000 after he ignored the one-way traffic rule in St James’s Street in Kemp Town.

PC Elaine Welsh gave Jean Blaison, 59, of Phonenix Rise, Brighton, a £30 fixed penalty notice in July 2011. She said that he narrowly missed colliding with a pedestrian.

Mr Blaison appealed against the fine to Brighton Magistrates’ Court but it was upheld. He then appealed to the crown court.

His appeal was dismissed by a judge at Hove Crown Court on Thursday 20 December, landing Mr Blaison with a fine and court costs of more than £1,000.

Sussex Police said that from next Monday (14 January) there would be a “new year crackdown on cyclists ignoring one-way signs in Brighton”.

Officers from the Brighton Neighbourhood Police Team plan to issue tickets to cyclists caught contravening traffic signs, including red lights.

The force said that the aim was partly intended to raise awareness that the rules of the road apply to motorists and cyclists alike.

PC Welsh said: “Cyclists travelling the wrong way in St James’s Street is the biggest complaint from local residents and business owners and can end in serious injury for both pedestrians and cyclists. “St James’s Street is a single lane road and a main bus route and is incredibly busy at certain times of the day.

“We will be actively looking for those caught ignoring the one-way signs and issuing them with on the spot fines.

“I am pleased that Blaison’s appeals were dismissed as he refused point black to accept responsibility for his actions or almost hitting the pedestrian.

“The roads are for everyone to use and enjoy and we all know that cycling is a great way to get around the city but those who blatantly flaunt the rules, if caught, will be fined.”

Last year a dozen one-way streets near by, in the North Laine area of Brighton, were opened up for cycling in both directions by Brighton and Hove City Council.

 

8 comments to Brighton cyclist ordered to pay £1,000 for ignoring one-way sign

  • Valerie Paynter

    George Street, Hove now sports big yellow signs making it clear that cycling is not allowed there during the hours of pedestrianisation. And not before time.

    A couple of years ago I was yanked very hard by a man pulling me out of the path of a speeding cyclist heading for my back and going the wrong way up that street (one way going south only when not closed to vehicles).

    It is high time bicycles carried licence plates to incentivise cyclists to use them responsibly and safely and to be accountable for the problems they cause. They seem to feel that because they get a seriously dangerous raw deal from car drivers that they have no responsbilities themselves.

    As I sit in taxis in winter darkness I am amazed at their invisibility and ignorance about the fact that reflective pedals and a little red light fail to signal their presence well. The streets are full of competing OTHER sources of lighting – from shops, from cars, from street lamps….allsorts. As well as licensing, we need to make cyclists wear reflective cross-body harnesses or head lamps to make the top bit visible.

  • georgie

    So cars running red lights, cars tailgating, cars parked dangerously – will they get fines like these?

    Last week I wore reflective hi-viz jacket – four lights on my back dotted all over, two on the front and was still nearly wiped out by a lorry passing too close. What we need is safer facilities for pedestrians and cyclists separate from each other and from cars – until that time, this will just continue.

    In one month cars around the world kill the same number of people who were killed on 9/11 – that was seen as an atrocity, yet nobody is shouting for the needless deaths that cars cause every day en-mass.

  • John Owen

    I was nearly hit by a cyclist when using a pelican crossing on Dyke Road. The cyclist jumped the red light and I had to get out of his way . When I shouted at him that the red lights applied to him he answered “Don’t be stupid, I’m on a bike”

  • Cyclopedriver

    I’m not condoning cyclists breaking the rules of the road, but this guy didn’t collide with, let alone injure anyone and was doing what is now allowed on a dozen roads in Brighton and is commonplace in much of continental Europe where they’ve realised that it actually doesn’t present a safety risk to allow contraflow cycling on one-way streets. In fact as UK Gov’s own guidance states “The introduction of one-way working can cause significant problems for cyclists if they are forced to use more circuitous and hazardous alternative routes as a result.. Two-way cycling should, therefore, be the default option where it is proposed to
    introduce one-way working for general traffic.”

    So police crackdown on cyclists, because local residents complain, meanwhile car drivers continue to be allowed to speed despite killing and maiming people everyday!

  • Cliive

    No excuse for running red lights or ignoring one-way signs. But licensing cycles would act as a disincentive to responsible cyclists too, and where’s the justice in that? What is needed is better traffic enforcement for cycles (and other traffic too) And more high-profile prosecutions like this one.

  • Vince

    The anti cycling lobby are out in force again I see. I don’t want facts to get in the way of your general hysteria but here’s an infographic about red light jumping:

    http://smellslikeglue.files.wordpress.com/2012/12/glue-red-lights-infographics.jpg?w=610&h=1007interesting

  • Vince

    The anti cycling lobby are out in force again I see. I don’t want facts to get in the way of your general hysteria but cyclists don’t really present a danger to anyone except themselves. The real danger is from cars and heavy vehicles. The general bias against cycling is baffling to me. Where are all the articles about pedestrians and drivers who are blocking cycle paths?

  • good i would like the police to now do a big big campaign along the Lewes road the cyclists there woosh past the red lights as if they are pretty disco lights… they spent £700k putting in the cycle lanes now enforce the traffic lights police …
    https://www.gov.uk/rules-for-cyclists-59-to-82/overview-59-to-71

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  • @gmarlowe as I said, we have previously reported discontent. I decided on a straight report for today. Let me know if anything else comes up
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  • @gmarlowe I think we have done that in the past. Would have been peeing on their parade to do that today really ...
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  • @gmarlowe fair comment - not much other than ceremony today, I hadn't read barge line before and thought that was most interesting bit :)
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