Cycling code of conduct insufficient to ensure good behaviour

Recently, I was at a bus stop in a Silver Zone when a cyclist sped by and hit an elderly man.

The elderly man's hand was badly bruised and he tried to explain to the cyclist that he should not ride across a crowded bus stop.

The cyclist was defiant and challenged the elderly man to report him to the police but as we attempted to contact the police, he sped off.

Incidents like this show how difficult it is to bring culprits to task. It is time the Land Transport Authority makes it mandatory for bicycles to have licence plates.

It is not mandated by law that cyclists have to give way to pedestrians when approaching bus stops, or that riding across bus stops is an offence.

Rather, the Active Mobility Advisory Panel proposed, as part of a code of conduct, that cyclists slow down and be prepared to stop when approaching bus stops, and always render assistance if involved in an accident.

A code of conduct is a set of best practices that users of personal mobility devices should observe to ensure the safe and harmonious sharing of paths.

However, it is not enforceable, so it is largely ignored.

The number of elderly people is increasing in our ageing society. They will be exposed to more hazards at bus stops if nothing is done to enforce the code.

Francis Cheng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 09, 2016, with the headline 'Cycling code of conduct insufficient to ensure good behaviour'. Subscribe