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Police to get tough on sidewalk cyclists

136 Comments

The National Police Agency is planning to toughen rules for sidewalk cyclists in order to cut back on the number of accidents involving bicycles colliding with pedestrians.

According to police, the consistently high rate of collisions in recent years has caused them to consider restricting the areas where cyclists can ride their bicycles. Police said that 2,760 collisions with pedestrians were reported last year, the eighth consecutive year that the number of incidents has exceeded 2,000, TBS reported. Five of those incidents resulted in death.

Police said that although a legal guideline exists stating that bicycles may be used on any path of at least two meters in width, it is in fact the responsibility of the National Public Safety Commission to permit or deny cycling in each location. Under proposed new rules, cyclists will not be allowed to ride on sidewalks less than three meters in width, TBS reported.

Along with the proposed restrictions, police are also hoping to introduce safe riding education schemes, to crack down on drunk cycling and to eventually introduce more dedicated cycling lanes on busy streets.

The NPA said that police officers will issue warnings to cyclists seen riding on sidewalks or riding in a reckless manner, such as using cell phones or iPods while on their bikes, TBS reported.

With the exception of children (under 13) and elderly people (over 70), cyclists will be encouraged to ride on roads rather than sidewalks, the NPA said. In so doing, cyclists need to understand that they have to observe traffic regulations the same as drivers, an NPA spokesman was quoted as saying by TBS.

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136 Comments
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Just make bike lanes, dammit! Holland, a far more densely packed nation than Japan, can do it, why not here?

11 ( +17 / -7 )

Yeah yeah, same old same old, too much talk and no action...and worse...NO ENFORCEMENT!

The "laws" are a joke in this country. -_-

3 ( +15 / -12 )

It' not only about sidewalk width. It's about high speeds and weaving in and out among people on a crowded sidewalk.

7 ( +12 / -4 )

Isn't it strange that the same organization, e.g. the National Police Agency and the Policemen are making the rules and also enforcing them?

Where are the elected law-makers involved?

Something is missing here in the democratic structure.

3 ( +8 / -4 )

And it is also about No Common Sence!! No lights at night!! Dark clothes? Listening to your mp3 players and texting on your cellphones!! Just an accident waiting to happen!! Idiots!! Here in Tokyo well full of idiots speeding drunk etc...the police?? Fat and lazy!!

3 ( +15 / -12 )

Without proper bike lanes, stricter regulations will only endanger cyclists forced to navigate through narrow roads. A sidewalk for pedestrians; cycling lanes for those on bikes, and then, of course, roads for the cars.

I commute to work by bike and everyday I see police officers on routine patrol cycling against traffic, often on the sidewalk. You must lead by example.

11 ( +15 / -3 )

that's too bad. in my city I wish more of the bikers would use the sidewalks!!! There is tons of traffic but no pedestrians, so the single bicycle is causing a huge JAMA when there is a perfectly open and nice sidewalk right there. then again. when I ever I travel to the bigger cites, and I walk down a shopping arcade with NO BICYCLE signs everywhere there are always about half a dozen d-bags at any given time trying to weave through the crowds. There is a time and a place, something some idiots will never understand.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

About time, crack down hard on these nuiciance cyclists, also make sure you spend most of your time checking these cyclists havent stolen the bike they are riding.

Issue stiff fines for traffic breaches and educate the problem riders about how dangerous their behaviour can be.

Damn cyclists think they can ride as they choose, too many times have I nearly hit one because they just ride straight out in front of you, can be quite scary when you consiger if you hit one with your car its you the car driver who gets the book thrown at him not the irresposnsible cyclist who caused his own death by being careless.

Dick heads most of these people too by the way.

-5 ( +10 / -14 )

Wow, Japanese police never slack when it comes to cracking down on the masses to get money.
I just bought a bike. I went to GIANT Bicycles their shop off the Toyoko line. I had a chance just to talk with the salespeople.

One of my questions was this: After 3/11 did bicycle sales go up? I expanded on my question by adding some info. I mentioned that gas was difficult to get and of course train service slowed down a bit.

He said there a was a noticeable increase in sales but it was marginal at best.

I guess the Japanese bicycle cops are aware of this trend in bicycle sales and want to continue to harass cyclists.

Bicycles are expensive these days. I was quite surprised. If you buy absolutely everything you need to be safe and keep your bike safe, you could easily spend 100,000 yen or more.

Too bad the police are getting ready to crack down though. It feels good to cut through traffic and stay fit.

After talking with some fellow cyclists, we all agreed that in the city areas such as Tokyo, Kawasaki and Yokohama there are many sidewalks that are just much too dangerous to ride on. Forget about the pedestrians for a second.
I'm talking about narrows areas, obstructions, dangerous driveway blind spots, and high curbs. No biker wants to be on the sidewalk to be honest.

The police are targeting the only ones they're are willing to catch. The bikers fear the CARS, TRUCKS so most try to ride the sidewalk as not to be sideswiped by an inconsiderate road hog. If you ride along the street you need all your safety gear. You never know when you are going to get clipped.

-5 ( +9 / -12 )

Police to get tough on sidewalk cyclists...because they are useless everywhere else

3 ( +11 / -8 )

And while I've been whacked a number of times on the sidewalk, the hardest collision was when I stepped off the sidewalk onto the crosswalk and was hit by a young woman who was blithely cruising through the red light. So you're not really safe in the street either.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

There's a huge difference between, say, central Chiyoda-ku and central Hamamatsu. The National Police force should mind their own business and let each city sort out what's best for it.

I live in central Tokyo and some of our sidewalks have clearly marked cyclying lanes, but no one pays any attention to them. One problem is dogs on leasheson the opposite side of the sidewalk as their owners. Tiny ones that wouldn't be readily visible to a cyclist busy minding pedestrians. I have trouble some days not tripping over stretched out retracto-leashes while walking.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

restricting the areas where cyclists can ride their bicycles....... eventually introduce more dedicated cycling lanes on busy streets.

That's back to front. Provide the cycle lanes first, then slap people who don't use them. In the sleepy backwater where I live it doesn't really matter whether people cycle on the pavement with the pedestrians or in the road with the motorists, since there isn't that many of either and plenty of room for everyone. But in busy crowded cities more thought needs to go into accommodating cyclists - more cyclists hopefully means fewer cars?

4 ( +9 / -5 )

so we can ride on the streets without any problem? not legal? still fuzzy about that

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The "Let's Safety Cycle" campaign, or whatever it will get called, will have a mildly cute girl in a ganbarre pose on the poster, and will last about 2 weeks until the police get bored of it and realise that people won't change their ways/it's too much effort.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

@giuliano yes, you're supposed to ride on the sidewalk.

when i first came to japan, i always thought we HAD to ride on the sidewalk because i saw everyone else doing it. but i hated it because it was so crowded and packed. it was almost better walking. i doubt if this law will change anything, but i'm all for it. people belong on sidewalks not bicycles.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

sorry giuliano, i meant "ride on the street."

0 ( +3 / -3 )

so we can ride on the streets without any problem? not legal? still fuzzy about that

Bicyclists are actually supposed to ride on the street, in the direction of traffic, observing all stop signs and lights. In some parts of Tokyo, at least, riding on sidewalks is permitted where marked (my neighborhood in the Okachimachi area has a lot of these, and a few--short--dedicated bike lanes) or allowed by the width of the sidewalk, as mentioned above, but is technically illegal elsewhere. But as many have noted, these restrictions are widely ignored.

In Tokyo, something like 40% of all traffic accidents involve bicycles, 60% of those at intersections (usually due to bicyclists ignoring red lights and stop signs). There was a major ticketing effort last week, for everything from ignoring the rules of the road to riding bikes without dual front and back brakes (pedal-operated brakes are not allowed here). Lots of people pleading ignorance... punishments for violation of bicycle rules can actually result in jail time--something drivers of cars aren't subject to for everyday infractions.

Maybe the drop in the number of automobile owners will make bike lane development a more realistic goal!

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Great story, get "Tough" on bikes. Forget Domestic violence crimes against children, Disorganized or corporate / white collar crimes...let's get people on bikes....bikes.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

What cycle lines everybody is talking when often there is even no sidewalk for the pedestrians.

I am fine both on the road and on the sidewalk but in both cases rules and manner has to be observed accordingly. On the road the most irritating offense is riders without lights against the traffic. Not waiting on red signal too but this even I follow selectively.

On the sidewalk and small streets main is not slowing down at turns and crossings, and not waiting for the bike in front of you. I have many cases when I slow down so somebody coming against me can pass when I am overtaken. Educating your own children and trying to influence everyone on 2 wheels is the way to change something. Many people, especially the elder don't know they are not supposed to ride in opposite direction on the road.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

when does this campaign start? this morning on may way to work by motorcycle, I was waiting for left run, in front of a Koban. It turned red for pedestrians, I was about to cross, when a dude on bicycle darted in front of me and crossed on red. I waved to the policeman who was watching this from the koban, and he gave me the shouganai look. last weekend I almost hit a cyclist with my car, he suddenly lost his balanced and veered in front of my car. In both instances, if my reflexes were slow and hit the guys, I would be the one to blame...

0 ( +3 / -3 )

fora left turn, sorry

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Cycle lanes then. CYCLE LANES for the cyclists.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Lanes or lines ;-) it would be in vain ! Nobody will follow only obstruction for the cars. (thanks for the correction Yong)

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@paulinusa i hope you reported her at least.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

So over 70 and under 13 can bike ON the sidewalk. Sidewalks wider than three meters is okay. There is no law about biking ON the sidewalk... Yep, clear as day that is.

Japan needs to invest in bike lanes. I bike a lot. I ride on the road - road bike and all - but man, the drivers are scary. Nearly everyday I have a "life flashing before my eyes" moment because of the drivers here don't know how to deal with us - and I will admit, many of "us" are idiots. I have no idea how many people I have had bike AT me. Follow the traffic rules if you are going to bike IN traffic.

The state of the sidewalks where I live are shocking - no way in hell do I trust them not to ruin my wheels.

Perhaps they could make bike lanes and THEN tell people to get off the sidewalks. I mean, really, is it that hard to understand why going the other way won't work??

3 ( +6 / -3 )

"cyclists will be encouraged to ride on roads rather than sidewalks"

that will probably only lead to more serious accidents and deaths.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

In Nagano City, when they did the rebuilding for the 1998 Winter Olympics, many bicycles lanes were introduced, at least in the main streets. I wonder that was better and worked quite well.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

All well and good cracking down on reckeless bike riders who are using keitai and iphones and running red lights...now how about about enforcing the same with drivers? All of this is happening on daily basis everywhere, all the time while cops turn the other way as they couldn,t be bothered...they seem to be fixated with bike riders - is it because they are an easy target - mainly students and women? Also I,m not sure how much improvement forcing the the same reckless bike riders off the sidewalks and onto roads clogged by cars driven by reckless drivers ( using THEIR keitai,s and running every red light they can ) will bring.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

What about the "mama-chari" with the moms carrying their kids? Will they be exempt along with the elderly and children riders?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

As many observe, the order is wrong. Build tyhe cycle lanes, crack down on the people who park their cars/lorries in them, ensure they are safe to use, then people will natrually start to use them because they are more convenient (and cheaper than the fine they will get is they ride the pavements.

Honestly speaking though, Tokyo (and as far as my limited knowledge of cities outside) is not setup for cycle paths, and how many streets have a 3m sidewalk?

Police themselves use the sidewalk where I live too!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Gave up riding a bicycle a few years back...got sick of being harassed by the cops.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Just to play devil's advocate: what about equipping all bicycles with piercing noisemakers and the rotating wheel-hub knives found on Roman chariots? This would teach pedestrians to be more careful on the sidewalks. The effects might take a few months to register, but walkers would not soon forget and would not so readily drift back to their careless ways.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

More cyclists on the roads will probably mean more deaths.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I find the lack of "paying attentions to your surroundings" in a big metropolis like Tokyo to be disturbing. Every body is so immersed in themselves that they rarely notice anything around them, checking phone, listening to music, switching lane without looking behind first, blazing through crossing without stopping or even slowing down a bit, etc. We don't need more laws that can be broken easily, what we need is common sense.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Actually - thinking more about it, if there was a good cycle path system, and places to park bikes at major centres, there may even be less traffic on the roads! Well, we can dream, huh?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Last December was great! Almost Christmas and near Ebisu station here in Tokyo, thousands and thousands of people out shopping, real nice until some idiot on a 10 speed bike comes flying down a hill, we are all crossing this big street in front of Ebisu, this stupid bastard ignores the hundreds of people crossing the street, he almost hit a baby! Yes a mother was walking and taking her little baby in the baby stroller, pram in the UK?? He barely missed it, kept on going and KABOOM! Crashes right into a shiny, brand new BMW, flies over the hood of that car, his bike is all messed up and the guy in the car stops, is really pissed off and all near a KOBAN! Did anybody bother to see if the idiot from the bike was ok?? Hell no! It was a Merry Christmas!

0 ( +5 / -5 )

I will never move out of the way for any bicycle even if they ring their damn bells! The only time I will make an exception if it's a very young child.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

There's a definite pattern in Japan - most cyclists ride in a manner where they expect the OTHER person - road user or pedestrian - to look out for them and take avoiding action if necessary. How many times have I been driving along the road and have some cyclist exit a side street in a wide arc that crosses my path? There needs to be more training and awareness of defensive riding.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

" 2,000, TBS reported. Five of those incidents resulted in death."

So please : DO NOTHING. My old country has half population of Japan, cycles are much less used, but they have to be on the road. That gives something like 8 000 accidents and 50 death. OK, give a fine to those that do the jerk on their charinko. But pushing the 2 wheel crowd onto the roads is not a good idea.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

They are just as bad on the roads. This morning, just like every morning, I had cyclists coming at me from both sides of the road, all going the same direction with another who zigzagged around me as I rode! Turning corners, you get cyclists hell bent on squashing their new titanium dream through a 5 inch gap between me and a car with another cyclist speeding on my other side. It's no joke. Taking my little love to daycare is quite a feat. Safely, I mean!

How are the youngsters supposed to learn any kind of road safety with the adults setting such a bloody awful example? People zoom about holding an umbrella while cycling in the rain....something I'm quite in awe of actually.....but I have yet to see a cyclist hand signal a turn. Just veer out. Sod the poor sod who just happens to be behind you!

I don't understand why there aren't more fatalities here!

1 ( +4 / -3 )

the consistently high rate of collisions in recent years

Why did it take them years to decide to do something?

Moreover, there is a police headquarter in my neighborhood and there is an everyday route for the cops on bicycle and I can say the pedal and speed on the sidewalk the same lunatic way as the average mad cyclists.
I don't believe police can do anything against it, mad cyclists (the majority of them) remain reckless until they break their neck.

If they kill it doesn't count for them as if the manage to flee from the scene, there is no way to catch them any more.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

All these accidents keep the hospitals in the black-more people on bicycles please!

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

All I can say is that if someone in power seriously does want to 'clean up the cyclists' it's going to take a lot of determined manpower and maybe a generation.

Also, think bells on bikes will become obsolete. What's the point when so many people are jaywalking around wearing headphones?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Kind of wondering why everyone is pointing the finger at the bikers here being the cause of accidents. No idea how many times I have nearly hit people who have stepped out of a store and didn't look before stepping out, people on their mobiles walking and not looking up, people who suddenly stop... Hell, no idea how many people have walked into me while walking!! Not just the bikers here who are at fault!

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Traffic lights for cyclists are also needed and crossing zebra crossings on a bike should be forbidden, cyclists should get off the bike and walk. Tough measures must be taken and teachers in schools should educate kids.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I´d rather the police decide clearly and once and for all in which direction bicycles move if they are on the road. I have deal with bicycles riding on the left and the right, and sometimes both in both direction. It is crazy!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Why on earth will those over 70 still be allowed to ride on the sidewalk when they often are the cause of a lot of accidents. And young children often swerve left and right as they peddle down the sidewalk as well.

Anyway, this is a start, and I hope they DO crack down on it -- not just the usual lip-service then do nothing. I agree with others that they should make bicycle lanes, but it's easier said than done, especially given how narrow some streets are, and where they DO have bike lanes I see cars and scooters/motorcycles swerve into them all the time to go around someone turning or stopped for some reason. Heck, on a number of the roads in my area there's not even a SIDEWALK and we have to walk in the road and around utility poles.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

This problem could be solved by Saturday under existing rules if the cops only cracked down on illegal parking. The only reason to use a sidewalk is because drivers occupy left lanes by using public roads as their parking lots.

A crackdown will never happen, though, since business owners encourage drivers to use the street for parking. This is even truer for delivery companies.

As it stands, the cops tow cars on low-traffic streets in residential negiborhoods, where such cars are not much of an obstacle. But on highways and major trunk roads where illegally stopped cars are a major safety hindrance, you don't see towing. Every night when I bike home on a trunk road in my city, there are cars stopped in the same locations outside the same hotels and hospitals.

If you wonder why a cyclist is taking more of the left lane than seems necessary, look ahead and you'll see a parked car. Rather than weaving in and out around parked cars, it's safer for the cyclist to take the lane before arriving at the obstruction. Clear these obstructions and you don't even need a cycling lane. Cyclists will naturally gravitate to the left close to the curb. And as a cyclist, I am in favor of cracking down on reckless driving by cyclists.

5 ( +8 / -2 )

Thank you tmarie! I was thinking the same thing. There are a lot of idiot cyclists here, but then there are a lot of idiot everybodys - pedestrians and drivers. If everyone actully paid more attention to what they were doing, most of these accidents wouldnt happen.

I have to ride my bike all the time. I will not ride on the road because it is just too dangerous - taxi drivers, lorry drivers, people parked on the street illegally so you have to weave past them out into the traffic. No way am I doing that with the kids on my bike, and if they made cycle lanes, cars would just park across them anyway and treat them as an unofficial stopping place.

I have never had a bike accident (touch wood) because I ride SLOWLY when there are lots of pedestrians around, in control when there arent lots of people around, watch what I am doing, anticipate a kid ahead of me suddenly changing direction and running out in front of me, and so on. I never use my cell or my ipod when riding, and the kids always have helmets on. Its not rocket science but common sense just seems to elude many people here.

I totally agree with Nessie - I am a cyclist and a driver, and I fully support a crackdown on stupid behaviour by both.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

yeah, yeah, yeah, just like they are going to enforce illegal parking, yawn...

1 ( +3 / -2 )

My feelings on this: Cycling on the pavements (sidewalks) is fine, as long as cyclists (which includes me) respect that pedestrians always have the right of way. Cyclists need to ride defensively, because you never know when that man or lady will suddenly stop or change direction.

Also cyclists need to slow right down on busy pavements. I think cyclists are a danger to pedestrians as cars are to cyclists on the road.

Encouraging cyclists to ride on the road is pathetic and dangerous. Have you seen how people drive in Japan? They seem to pay about as much attention to their surroundings as: a young lady listening to music, whilst reading an email on her iPhone, umbrella in her other hand and never looking forward...

And you want people to ride their bikes on the road! OK minor accidents with pedestrians will decrease, but expect fatalities on the road to go up... Now which is more desirable?

4 ( +7 / -3 )

In the whole scheme of things 2000-3000 accidents compared to the millions of bicycle riders out there is a pretty small percentage.

Put more bicycles back on the street than the sidewalks, the headline will change to "POLICE GET TOUGH ON DRIVERS" because the number of bicycle vs car will increase.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Where are the elected law-makers involved?

Elected lawmakers do not usually get involved with making traffic regulations. People in this country have a overall lack of sense of what is happening around them and are oblivious to situations where they are in danger, particularly on the roads.

Pedestrians as well as people on bicycles need to pay better attention.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

From now on whatever I post - just ignore it and read whatever Tokyokawasaki writes - he seems to be able to encapuslate exactly what I am always trying to say but in a much more readable form! Defensive cycling - THATS what I was trying to get at!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I ride my bicycle on the street. Too dangerous on a sidewalk. Not enough room to navigate when avoiding pedestrians.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

How about they get out and teach the morons in cars what 止まれmeans, and how the red traffic light doesn't mean "yeah, you can still go!"

0 ( +4 / -4 )

...and how about some bike lanes and cheap bicycle parking near the stations, please.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

i pity the j-police, poor guys will be trying to catch and punish half the population in japan, while the real criminals have the fun of their lives

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Thank you for your kind words Nicky... Note: I also take inspiration from your posts :)

0 ( +3 / -3 )

A cycling observation:

Does anyone else experience this strange phenomenon?

I am convinced that whenever I ride my bicycle (or walk) that I have some kind of natural tractor beam. I say this because people seem to always swerve directly into my path. They can be walking nice and straight, and as soon as I approach from behind (keeping to one side of them) they suddenly change direction and veer into my direct path. It happens so frequently, I will take a video camera with me one day to prove to myself and others that I have some kind of mysterious people pulling magnetic power (tractor beam).

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@tokyokawasaki: something similar happens to me when walking along a narrow way. when another person is walking towards me, just as we pass each other, a bicycle coming from behind and zips through the middle, missing me by half a millimeter, at the exact moment when there's barely space enough. these are strange attractions that i can do without.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

In my country it's strictly not allowed to use sidewalks for bikes (any policecar will stop by if you do so). Therefore bikers are on the streets, which leads of course to deadly accidents once in a while. I myself are using the bike going to work and was hit by a motorcycle once badly. Although I'm still driving on streets, in my opinion it's too dangerous. It's adequate to allow bikers on the sidewalk, where it's not narrow and a own lane is shown. But of course bikers must take care of other people. When I'm in Japan and using the bike on the street, people look at me as if I am an alien. So often I use the sidewalk, too...

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Like there's "so much space" to ride your bike on the rode...

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Nessie: You're right about the illegal parking thing. I ride my bicycle to work every day and it amazes me the amount of times I have to swerve into the opposite lane on the road because so many people are parked around the stations to pick people up/drop them off, outside Izumiya for shopping or the combini to buy cigarettes, outside of nursery schools, etc. Just this morning, in fact, there were two cars parked on the side of the road in opposite lanes and just across from each other, so no cars could get through. It only lasted for a few minutes, and I ended up walking my bike onto the sidewalk, but it was comical to see a woman scramble out of the combini to move her car forward a bit while a delivery truck driver was pounding on his horn!

You're also right that they will not enforce anything truly. They'll make it 'optional' while 'strongly recommending' this or that.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

I should have said road.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The Japanese police should have done something before, Why now?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Cycle lanes then. CYCLE LANES for the cyclists. NOW!

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Great news! I've been hit hard from behind by two wayward women (about 10 years ago) ... and suffered a nagging hip injury that is still bothering me today. One woman regained her balance on her bicycle and kept on going. The other woman wiped herself off the side of a building she slammed into, got back on the bike and went her merry way. No apoligies from either of them.

Last year during a marathon bicycling day here in Tokyo as authorized by our fearless Gov. Ishihara, I was waiting for the light to change green at Yotsuya 3-chome. I counted something like 18 cyclists dressed in their flashy cycling clothes and riding expensive bikes come up Shinjuku-dori and make a left turn ... just as several families pushing baby carriages were crossing at the green light. These stupid cyclists just swerved around these carriages and small walking children as if they weren't even there. And police watching the scene didn't do anything ... Luckily nobody got hit ... but it was a breath-taking moment ...

Today I still find myself dodging demons on bicycles, even on pedestrian crossings as they come zinging from all directions. Among other things, they should be forced to put lights on them (there is already a law that says they must do this). And they should be fined big money for driving dangerously.

Tokyo is bad ... but I found cyclists to be just as wild in cities in Shikoku and Kyushu. So, I guess, no matter where you live in Japan the cyclists are bad all over.

So hope police do as the headline says ... they must get tough ... and stop this kamikaze nonsense on the sidewalks ... and also in the roads.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

@NickyWashida

watch what I am doing, anticipate a kid ahead of me suddenly changing direction and running out in front of me, and so on

That's the key word there - anticipate. And that's what is severely lacking among cyclists here. How many of us have experienced cyclists cutting in front of us (making us stop suddenly) when it would have made more sense to go round behind us? Cycling proficiency tests in school would teach kids anticipation (defensive riding) and common sense.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I can think of any number of things to clothesline a few of these truly asinine bicyclists and would like to see the average citizen start creating obstacles to having riders flying down sidewalks. I guess it's only a dream.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It is the old ladies that annoy me.

Why do they jump off their bikes and stop when they see me coming? Is it the short skirt?

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

what laws? nobody seems to obey. sick

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Isn't it the law that they use the road?

If the police force cyclists to use the road, there will be an increase in traffic deaths because so many cyclists are morons.

If there is an increase in traffic deaths, the police will look bad.

The police do not want to look bad, so they will soon stop enforcing the law.

Cyclists should be required to take a test and get a licence. It is necessary for them to have traffic sense when they use the road.

A few weeks ago I had to swerve violently a cross the yellow line in the middle of a four lane road to avoid a suicidal cyclist and then swerve violently back to my side of the road to avoid oncoming traffic. My quick reaction saved the cyclist's life. The cyclist had decided suddenly to go straight across a major road without looking. That is the sort of thing cyclists do in this country. Then last night I was driving home and a cyclist wearing dark clothes on a black bike riding on the wrong side of the road with, as in common, no lights on road straight across the junction I was approaching quite oblivious to the headlights of an oncoming car.

Most cyclists just don't even think about what is on the road or the pavement. On the road, if a driver hits a cyclist, it is always considered to be the driver's fault in law although it is almost certainly the cyclist's fault.

Don't get me wrong. I am not against bicycles. I have seen excellent riders with protective headgear, flashing LED lights and traffic sense, too. Such cyclists are no problem on the road. It is the idiots on bicycles that I object to. They should not be on either the pavement or the road.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

....and has anybody mentioned the twerps on "fixie" bikes without brakes yet? They were mentioned on TV the other day, and low and behold I saw two of them here in Meguro. There must be more. Their ony way to brake is to skid. Incredible stupidity.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Am I the only one who feels safer on the street??? I'm not in a city anymore - used to bike on both the sidewalk and street depending on how busy the sidewalk was - and bike on some back road where cars go by doing up to 70. They tend to move and go around me. The only people who I have a hard time with are young mothers in yellow plates who have a kid bouncing around, a keitai in their hand and maybe a dog hanging out the window. Knock on wood but haven't been hit yet. I can't say the same about me biking on the sidewalk. I have had numerous people walking into me - as I was passing doors, at traffic lights... I have had more people stop in front of me and me having to slam on my brakes. There is just no common sense here in most pedestrians. Rather than move to the side, they'll stop to answer the phone, send a text... The kids are all over the place, the dogs on leashes with leashes 10 meters long... It isn't just the bikers!! Common sense and a little safety for using sidewalk, biking and driving are much needed here!!

And yes, kicking bikers into the streets is only going to increase traffic deaths. I think a few run ins on the sidewalk would be better than deaths.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It would help if the d-heads would use their bells. I can't count the # of times some idiot racing along at hi speed, or even someone on -char has almost hit me. If the typical non thinking person taught to give a GENTLE ring of the bell it would eliminate the vast majority of the 2,000+ accidents.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Use your shoulder Laz. My guy does effectively.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

people seem to always swerve directly into my path

They do this when I'm walking AND we have made eye contact. Do they want to get walked into by a foreigner?

As for forcing bicyclists onto the street, in ten years time, after they have amassed the data - expect to see the NPA forcing bicycles onto the sidewalk as there were 10,000 accidents resulting in 100 deaths of bicycle-on-car collisions. Consistently high, as it were.

Too bad common sense can't be made legal and enforced.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Footpaths are narrow enoigh for pedestrians passing each other, without having to step out on the road to avoid cyclists. Many times I have had to back up against a wall to avoid some of the cyyclists who come up behind hell bent on passing, regardless, of pedestrians both young and senior. Having said that the cycle as an eco machine is a good choice for local travel and liesure and though some roads are narrow perhaps there is some way a cycle lane can be accomodated

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Cycle lanes then. CYCLE LANES for the cyclists. NOW! NOW!

As other posters, what IS that? No check behind, no glance or interest in a wider environment, of its dangers and threats but BANG, right, BANG, left. No eyes. No look just turn, beeline and go SUDDEN. No warning. No way to act as a pedestrian. Is it?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I'm all for cycling on the pavements (sidewalks).

It's much safer.

Just have stiffer penalties for cyclists who go too fast or aren't taking enough care.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

When I first came to Japan 23 years ago, cycling on the footpaths was not a problem as cyclists cycled with care and at a reasonable speed. Now they speed and weave in and out of pedestrians. They also race across crossings at intersections when the lights have turned red, holding up legal turning traffic which gets caught in the centre of the road.

Another problem is young school girls in particular who cycle two abreast on the footpath and make pedestrians to jump out of the way. I always stand my ground and stick my elbows out. It hurts them more than it hurts me. The other dangerous practise is cycling against traffic on major roads even pulling out past stationary cars and forcing us drivers to veer to the right to avoid them. I could go on more.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

It's actually not safer to ride on sidewalks. Not only for the reasons below but for this reason: drivers of cars have more to risk for being unpredictable (though taxis seem to go against that logic). Not only will they damage their cars, which is expensive to repair but they could be seriously injured and as we all know, in Japan if they hit a cyclists they'll be held accountable regardless of who was really at fault. People walk out of stores and don't pay attention on the pavement because they imagine that the worst that'll happen is they'll collide with another person. Especially here in Japan, people tend to assume to bigger, more powerful person, vehicle, etc. is looking out for the smaller one. Ride your bicycle on the sidewalk and that's the total unpredictability you'll encounter.

"You're riding on the sidewalk and cross the street at a crosswalk, and a car makes a right turn, right into you. Drivers aren't expecting bikes in the crosswalk, and it's hard for them to see you because of the nature of turning from one street to another, so it's very easy for you to get hit this way. In fact, this collision is so common we've lost track of the number of people who've told us they were hit this way, such as Ray John Ray. One study showed that sidewalk-riding was twice as dangerous as road riding, and another study said it's even more dangerous than that." http://bicyclesafe.com/

p://www.bicyclinglife.com/Library/riskfactors.htm http://www.bicyclinglife.com/Library/Moritz2.htm

Another myth is that you'll be safer if you ride your bike as close to the left (inside lane) as possible. Ride too close to the left and cars won't see you because they're looking down the middle of the road. It also puts you at serious risk of riding into an open door of a parked car.

It's a chicken and egg situation but the reality is that cars won't be comfortable sharing the roads with cyclists until more cyclists - safely - take to the roads but many cyclists won't take to the roads until they feel the roads are safer.

The thing for all of us annoyed by cyclists using the sidewalks they shouldn't use is to do a few things:

1) Don't move for the cyclists. If they need to pass you they can do so when there's an opening in the sidewalk. If they're coming down the sidewalk too quickly and you have a bag, hold it up and indicate that they'll be riding face into it if they don't slow down. It's risky but it's yet to not work for me.

2) Every time you see a police officer and someone violating cycling rules, which is about every time I step out of my house, point it out and ask the police officer, politely but firmly, to do something about it.

3) When you're riding on the correct side of the road and a cyclist comes at you the wrong way, pull to the side and force them to move out into the middle of the lane. If nothing else it may help them to realize how much danger they're putting themselves and others in, especially if a car is coming right at them.

4) Lead by example. Wear the proper safety gear, pay attention when you're riding, ride on the road and encourage others to do so.

Nothing will change until people realize that there is a way to make the sidewalks safe for pedestrians and roads safe for cyclists and until people demand nothing less! My general feeling is that if you don't feel safe riding on the roads then you're probably not a good enough or safe enough cyclist to be riding on the sidewalks either. That may be harsh and I know I'll take some slack for it so I won't bother responding . I'll just state right now that I stand by that comment.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

They can be walking nice and straight, and as soon as I approach from behind (keeping to one side of them) they suddenly change direction and veer into my direct path.

Yes yes yes! It is not just you! Just yesterday I was coming along a wide path near a gaggle of schoolgirls and I just KNEW in my bones one of them was about to dart right in front of me and head for the vending machine at the side of the path - sure enough! Lucky for her one of us was watching and anticipating what was going to happen. I missed her but only just.

I never use my bell - call me crazy but I just feel really rude! I always come up behind someone, and if they dont see me or move, I say "Sumimasen". Most times they move. As a pedestrian I always want to knock the block off someone that comes hurtling up behind me going DING DING DING when the path is already at least 2-3 metres wide. As a cyclist I always make sure I thank people who move for me, especially women with young children who are often all over the street. I understand it is difficult to get a toddler to walk in a straight line and I appreciate them apologising and moving for me, although there is no need for them to apologise. Its the salarymen in my area walking 5 abreast down the pavement who see you coming and just refuse to move that piss me off.

I do have fun on my bike though, I have to admit, especially in Summer. You pull up to some lights, next to some hottie on his mountain bike, smile and nod a "how you doin`" and then the lights change and youre gone in a haze of long blonde hair and denim shorts (electric bike!) leaving him behind. Oh yeah! Putting the "mmmma!" in "mamachari"! ;-) (Note: dont try this when the kids are actually ON the bike! Then you just get a screwy look!)

2 ( +5 / -3 )

It's actually not safer to ride on sidewalks. You're riding on the sidewalk and cross the street at a crosswalk, and a car makes a right turn, right into you.

I don't agree. I think it is safer to cycle on the sidewalk.

I'm only facing pedestrians and other cyclists most of the time. I can take care at crossings... I know some drivers don't look out for cyclists when they turn the corner so I take care.

If I am in the road mixing it with cars, I will get squashed by the car in the case of a nasty accident.

I won't get squashed by an old lady who is walking on the sidewalk. Maybe I might get handbagged, but not squashed.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I won't get squashed by an old lady who is walking on the sidewalk. Maybe I might get handbagged, but not squashed.

Yeah, but do you know what those chicks carry in their handbags??! ;)

I agree - of course the sidewalk is safer for cyclists than it is in the street, and I am sure stats must back that up. What - of 2000 or so accidents only 5 were fatal? What proportion would be fatal for the cyclist if those 2000 accidents had occured on the road?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Another case of this country having to learn from its mistakes. Why not educate cyclists more or threaten them with heavier fines for riding unsafely. I wonder how many deaths will occur from cyclists being hit by cars before they realize that maybe on such narrow roads, as most are in this country, that it is a mistake to let cyclists ride alongside cars/scooters.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

What about the cop I almost ran into when turning into a narrow "one-way" street from Komaza-dori and he was coming out of it on his white bicycle - the "wrong way" and on the right-hand side... Good example for other cyclists !

1 ( +2 / -1 )

So how many of these incidents of collisions occurred on sidewalks? All I hear about is how so many streets have NO sidewalks and people must walk in the street to get from one end to the other. Whats the ratio of THOSE collisions to the ones on sidewalks?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think these rules are quite reasonable actually. As a person who drives however I can say though the biggest problem is a lot of people who ride bikes on the street don't follow the rules of the road. Too often do I see people riding their bike against traffic (frightful when streets are so narrow here) and people who weave in and out of lanes and sidewalks disregarding traffic lights and stop signs.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

No adults should be riding on pavements, 3 metres wide or 30 metres. BUT. Before that happens car drivers, and I really mean those idiot taxi drivers, also need to have the rulebook thrown at them in relation to cyclists on the roads. Japanese taxi drivers hate cyclists and I have been cut up and had to hit the emergency brakes countless times on the road. Also. They'll need to get rid of that ridiculous traffic crossing rule in Japan where cyclists cannot sit in the centre lane and cycle straight with the traffic, but have to go across the pedestrian crossing and pick the road up again on the other side of the crossing. Just ridiculous. Punish the dangerous taxi drivers as well as the adult cyclists.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

As a foreigner in Japan I have to say the cyclists on the pavement terified me at first. Then my daughter told me to not make any sudden moves, just stay on course and let the cyclist negotiate around me. I do think that cycling rather than driving is so much better for everyone on many levels but couldn't there at least be a general rule, like pedestrians keep to the left, cyclist keep right, space permitting of course. Osaka city is a good example; there the pavements are very wide but the pedestrians straddle the whole pavement with bicycles weaving at top speed between them! There is an unspoken rule on escalators in Britain for example; people standing on one side and people running up the escalator on the other side and it works very well.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Recently I attempted to ride on the sidewalk. Was nearly run over by a bicyclist coming my way while reading a manga perched on his handlebars. Back out onto the streets for me, after that. It's safer!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"Just make bike lanes"

That would wouldn't do any good here, people would just park their cars and trucks on the bike lanes.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Its really quite simple: if people didnt ride or drive (and sometimes even walk!) like absolute A-holes, there wouldnt be a problem.

The old taxi drivers - good luck getting them to change their ways, and until they do, no way am I cycling on the road and I can guarantee the fatalities will go up if people do.

People cycle too fast, too out of control, and without paying attention on the street. Ditto driving. The path outside my sons daycare scares the hell out of me. It is beautifully wide, not crowded, but long and straight and people cycle like hell is on their tail down there. There are two daycares on the same street. There have been two hideous accidents that I know of. One, the 3 year old little girl was scarred for life. The guy didnt stop, but luckily my friend chased him and a lovely security guard down the road put his arms out and stopped him. He later tried to claim in court that his wife was having a miscarriage and thats why he was rushing home. (Trned out to be total BS. I cant believe the lies that get told here for people to weasel out of taking responsibility for their actions. He also said he didnt know he had hit anyone!!!). The second time a little boy broke his leg. This time the female cyclist got away with it - no-one caught her. I cant for the life of me understand the mentality of someone who would hit a child and leave them for dead not knowing if they had killed them. How can you live with that?

Both times the cyclists were going way too fast, and the socking great yellow sign warning of daycares and to watch their speed seems to have done nothing to slow people down on that street. Its only a matter of time before it happens again.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

To my dear gaijin amigos and amigas here, about the bicycle BELLS, many stupid here find them annoying, offensive at least this is what my Japanese amigos tell me, to be careful not to ring my bicycle bell too it could set a native off and get you into a fight or worse, this is why many Japanese are AFRAID to ring their bells, just like they are afraid to HONK THEIR HORNS, not too sure what they would say back in the old country UK?? Press the claxon?? In any other country everybody honks or rings bells etc.so no problem, but here in Japan everything seems to be offensive, disturbing the WA?? But I would much rather yell out SUMIMASEN!!! Make people know I am coming from behind etc..especially these folk taking their stupid dogs out for crap walks etc..

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Pedestrians have PRIORITY over cyclists ! If anyone rings a bell behind me on a sidewalk, I'll put a stick in his/her wheels... and I am not Japanese. BTW, dogs are not stupid; some people are...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@ Nicky. I saw a father walking with his little boy. A toddler. He was walking with the boy on the inside of the pavement, it's supposed to be safer than walking with your child on your right. This idiot on a bike tries to squash his way through a gap between the child and a drinks machine. He knocked the child out of the way, with his bike and blithely carried on. Shocking. I would be totally mortified if I hurt anyone. Especially a child.

Totally agree. If people walked, drove vehicles and rode bikes with a lot more care and consideration, this wouldn't be such a huge problem. I also don't like to use my bell. When I do use it, it's a gentle 'ping' followed by a 'sumimsen' or 'gomen nasai'.

I really hate cycling out to hoikuen for drop off and pick up. I feel like Ben Hur in Tokyo! I also think people have to be a lot more vocal when compaining about this problem.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

There are a few cycle lanes in central Sendai but, alas, they are all too often occupied by pedestrians, parked cars and even parked bicycles. If the police want to fine cyclists for riding on the pavement how about fining pedestrians for walking in the cycle lanes? Or at least make pedestrians liable for accidents caused by them walking in the cycle lane.

Riding in the road is OK in the city centre: where the road has more than one lane in each direction the inner lane is often occupied by illegally parked cars, but usually there is ample room to ride around the cars in that lane. Where there is only one lane I tend to ride in the centre of the lane to stop cars trying to squeeze past when it's not safe to do so. That can irritate some impatient drivers, but that's tough. If more cyclists are forced into the road it means slower journeys for car drivers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If they're coming down the sidewalk too quickly and you have a bag, hold it up and indicate that they'll be riding face into it if they don't slow down.

It happened to me many times I held the heavy heavy bag before me, they hit me, fell off their bike, they accused me with violence and didn't understand what had happened. If they had the IQ to understanding the risk, they would ride safe. They don't have the necessary IQ.

When you're riding on the correct side of the road and a cyclist comes at you the wrong way, pull to the side and force them to move out into the middle of the lane.

When you do this e.g. driving your car, they will follow you and and when you have to stop at the firs red traffic light a 100 meters ahead they will kick and dent your car and flee on the sidewalk. If you are walking on the sidewalk and do that be prepared they they take it for you yielding way, won't even make the slightest effort to save you and they hit you.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

My wish list (as a cyclist):

To fellow cyclists:

For god's sake, use lights at night-time. You can buy red ones at 100 shops. Anything is better than nothing.

Look up, not down while riding. If your life depends on texting while cycling, then bring the phone to the level of your face.

To drivers:

Try looking left when you're turning left (I know, sometimes you have to spell out common sense).

When people are crossing the road and the pedestrian lights are green, you STOP! You don't crash into them.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Problems I have with bicyclists :

1) Dorky Highschool kids riding bicycles 3,4 a breast (This is not E.T. your not going to fly over my head) ( and E.T. Doesn't exist)

2) In Edogawa ku Kasai people ride bicycles reading a book & mp3 player going down a ramp at 20-25mph (18-23kph)

3) Smoking and riding a bicycle ( hey I don't want to smell your fumes )

4) Ojichans riding a bicycle and walking the dog with a short choke collar leash at the same time ( Please get off your bike, how can your dog go to bathroom when your flying at 15mph.) Slow down Sling Blade In America it's called Animal Cruelity. Please stop I see an huge accident waiting to happen.

5) Women wearing mini very very very very short skirts. If you don't want me to look your way. Stop wearing short super micro skirts.

6) People who ride all over the place every which way except riding with the flow of traffic (Please get educated, get an driver's license, please i beg you) If you drove a car or understanding driving aspects you would understand and gain knowledge about riding a bicycle

7) Slow down in my experience I've gotten hit 1 time. It was in Tokyo, and it was the first day working at a job. A woman in her 20's came barreling at me, her handlebar caught my dufflebag strap and her bike flew in the air and my dufflebag flew but I didn't fall down. But all my stuff was all over the street. My bag was gone. I turned around and started yelling at her saying slow down in nihongo. She didn't say sorry or bow her head or anything. She had an it's all your fault look. She didn't offer to pay my bag or anything.

Bicycle lanes are a good idea, but keep the cars away, motorscooters, and etc. But there are hazards Public Buses are always on the left hand side, crazy taxi drivers, and dangerously slow cars and etc.

In the country roads like Saitama, Tochigi and Chiba. It's very hazardous to ride a bicycle in the streets because of the lack of space. I admit I ride my bicycle very fast on the sidewalks because I have a great sense of balance. Never came close to hitting anybody. But the pedistrians are worse than bicyclists sometimes people don't know how to walk.

I guess everybody should have a license, especially when i am walking inside the Tokyo train station.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Please get off your bike, how can your dog go to bathroom when your flying at 15mph.

As someone who regularly uses a bicycle to exercise the dog, let me point out to you that dogs are not supposed to befoul the public pavements. Walkies is a time for exercise, not defecation. That takes place in the garden before walkies. It isn't Animal Cruelity (?) to train a dog not to mess up the pavements, or to give a dog a good hard run to work off excess energy.

The dog should be on a harness though, not a choke collar.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I think it will fail completely. There have been similar campaigns by Japanese police in the past. Why did they fail? Far too many Japanese backchat the police here and get extremely angry at them in the attempt to escape the ticket. I've seen it myself on the streets with one mother berating the officer because he made her late for something. And I've seen the same behaviour on TV when some station took a camera crew out on to the street and shot some scenes of people getting extremely angry at the police who were just doing their job.

I absolutely pity any Japanese policeman trying to do this in Japan, because they are going to cop (no pun intended) a mouthful.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

As for forcing bicyclists onto the street, in ten years time, after they have amassed the data - expect to see the NPA forcing bicycles onto the sidewalk as there were 10,000 accidents resulting in 100 deaths of bicycle-on-car collisions. Consistently high, as it were.

Sidewalk riding is illegal in much of the US. Fatal bicycle-on-pedestrian accidents there are about 2 or 3 per year, comparable to the current figure for Japan.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@tokyokawasaki - I am convinced that whenever I ride my bicycle (or walk) that I have some kind of natural tractor beam

Have you tried reversing the polarity?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Has anyone had the urge of doing an American football tackle on some idiot crusing high his/her bike at local train stations?? I mean, Barabing - barabang!! Deck'em out cold!? I had too many close calls and promised myself to hit them so hard if I get wham and then drag them to the Koban.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

When I am walking anywhere with the kids and a bike is getting too close for comfort, I put my arm out around my child and tell the cyclist loudly and firmly to 'Be careful'. I am sorry but if some selfish idiot thinks it's okay to scrape his brake or handle bar across my child's cheek, he or she had better have great health insurance! I always thought pedestrians have right away on the actual pavements but seems not.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The problem with putting cycles on the road isn't the cars, it's the scooters.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Until car drivers here realise they're not the only person on the roads, learn what 止まれ means, learn what their mirrors are for, look left and right before pulling out, and understand that a red traffic light doesn't mean "try to squeeze across before traffic comes the other way," I will continue to cycle (safely and without texting or listening to music) on the pavement. As someone who has driven and cycled here (as well as used a scooter) I know from experience that car drivers here are largely cretins. And what happened to police clamping down on drivers using their mobile phones? I see dozens every day doing this.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Having been "clipped" by cyclists numerous times on my visits to tokyo, the common factor in most of the incidents was the fact the cyclist was also using a mobile phone. It's these type of offences that the police need to crack down on.

Cutting through red lights is another, there's a junction in shinjuku that i cross a lot and as soon as the lights change for pedestrians to cross, it's like running the guantlet with cyclists cutting through. Althought to be fair a police officer is nearly always there and stopping offenders randomly.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Dear Samantha Zoe, if any fool even tried to get between my children and me on the bikes etc..and if they dared hit my kids, well you would maybe have a new news article under CRIME?? Little Mexican really pissed off for having idiot Japanese on bicycle hit his children and Mexican father shoves that bike up??? yes, or smashes the guy or gals face in with his own bike to teach them some common sense, mess with my kids and well you are dead or you will be wishing that you were dead, too many stupid Japanese have no common sense, I saw some fat idiot slob at Tokyo Disneyland STEP on a young child who was waiting to see the Electrical parade there the child cried out, the child's father chased down the idiot and the got into a big fist fight there in the Magic Kingdom, both were kicked out of the park, but you just have to wonder what kind of an idiot walks, or rides bicycles with out any regard for the safety of others, little children, etc..some really stupid, stupid people here on the islands, I do not want to get into the details about what would happen to these Japanese fools if they dared touch or hurt children in Mexico, but my guess PEMEX, that is our National Gasoline and Diesel stations, it would definitely involve some good old fashion gasoline pouring over those who dare hurt innocent children. IMHO.

-6 ( +1 / -6 )

@ Elbuda Mexicano. You echo my sentiments exactly! I am one huge mamma bear when it comes to my kids.A few of my Japanese friends like to spout off speeches on how caring, sensitive and polite Japanese are compared to other nationalities. It takes all my will to stop my jaw from hurtling at high velocity to the ground. Nowhere on this planet is immunne to insensitive, rude and indifferent folks. I've seen kids hurt by adults too. Intervened the odd time. Am shocked at how anyone could endanger a child or do something that could injure them.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"Pedestrians have priority over cyclists"

Who told you that, ha ha!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

In the sleepy backwater where I live it doesn't really matter whether people cycle on the pavement with the pedestrians or in the road with the motorists, since there isn't that many of either and plenty of room for everyone.

Where's that? I've always fancied drinking and driving. It sounds like a safe place to do it, being such a sleepy backwater with nobody around.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Where's that? I've always fancied drinking and driving.

So you can come here and drive drunk? No way I'm gonna tell ya.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Wearing a helmet should be compulsory too.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This is an issue here in New Brunswick, NJ, and in nearby New York City. New Brunswick needs more bicycle lanes and wants a law against sidewalk bicycling. (Never mind that some sidewalks around here are so wide and underpopulated that they make decent bicycle trails.) In New York City, there are bicycle lanes in numerous places (thank you, Mayor Bloomberg), and sidewalk bicycling is a no-no. However, bicyclists are asked to stay in their lanes. That wouldn't be an issue if bicycle lanes weren't obstructed by parked cars, construction projects, and other obstacles. My advice to Tokyo et al: be flexible with bicycles. Don't allow them on the sidewalks, but do allow them elbow room so they can maneuver.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

So you can come here and drive drunk? No way I'm gonna tell ya.

what's the problem? I won't hit anyone, there's plenty of room and I'll just honk my horn if I see someone in the way.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

what's the problem? I won't hit anyone

Famous last words.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

OK, compromise. I'll just ride my bicycle up and down the pavement all day. Possibly using my ipod and/or phone. Does it rain a lot in your neck of the woods? I can hold an umbrella and cycle no problem. So, where is it?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Now we're getting somewhere. Are you going to arrive drunk, or drink after you get here? And how many bottles do I get?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

skroknogOct. 26, 2011 - 02:16PM JST

Gave up riding a bicycle a few years back...got sick of being harassed by the cops.

Nagoya is the worst place for this, I lived there for 5 years, got stopped by cops about 10 times to check my bike was not stolen !

I've lived in many other cities since, never been stopped once!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

ka_chanOct. 27, 2011 - 02:07PM JST

The problem with putting cycles on the road isn't the cars, it's the scooters.

main problem for cars and scooters is cycles riding on the wrong side of the road!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

A policeman stopped me once for cycling on the road and told me to use the pavement. He clearly did not have a clue.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

As long as the government does not embark on a wide dedicated cycle lane construction plan, the NPA will get nowhere with their 'tough' unenforced/unenforceable regulations.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

SerranoOct. 27, 2011 - 09:52PM JST

"Pedestrians have priority over cyclists Who told you that, ha ha!

The Police...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Now we're getting somewhere. Are you going to arrive drunk, or drink after you get here?

Aaah, well since we are getting somewhere....I have a confession to make. I'm sorry, I can't visit your sleepy little backwoods town and ride my bicycle on the streets and/or drive drunk around your shoddy little shantytown. Despite the lack of people to inflict injury upon in such a quiet neck of the woods, I just wouldn't be able to sleep right at night knowing I had broken the law. I'd recommend you ask your local council to extend those pavements to the full 3 metre length.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

4) Ojichans riding a bicycle and walking the dog with a short choke collar leash at the same time ( Please get off your bike, how can your dog go to bathroom when your flying at 15mph.) Slow down Sling Blade In America it's called Animal Cruelity. Please stop I see an huge accident waiting to happen.

Cleo - Where do you live ? And exactly what are you texting about ? I'm talking about Tokyo, Saitama, and Chiba bicyclists. I've seen a dog almost had his head torn off between a tree,

I've asked dog professionals, Veterinarians and etc it's a bad idea.

The people I've saw are reckless !!!!! Riding a bicycle and holding a choke collar leech is dangerous.

It's called, " Animal Cruelity " If the dog wants to run by a treadmill for dogs. It's cheap not that expensive.

If you haven't seen what i saw, please keep your comments to yourself.

THANK YOU

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Buy a treadmill or let the dog run in a dog park.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"Along with the proposed restrictions, police are also hoping to introduce safe riding education schemes, to crack down on drunk cycling and to eventually introduce more dedicated cycling lanes on busy streets"

lol drunk cycling, sounds just redicioulus

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I ride both on the road and footpaths in Japan and have never had a problem, but i have been riding and racing bikes for 30 years. When i'm riding the city bike on the footpath i ride quite slowly and carefully, but as you all know, many don't. When i ride a racing bike, i certinally pick my time to avoid peak traffic, and also avoid the busy roads. Where we live when not in Japan, i work in the bicycle industry, and many people i know are always having problems with cars, pedestrians, other bikes but i very rarely have any dramas, i think it's mostly common sence and some education, most people in Japan and elseware, often do not realize that the way they ride in dangerous, till they have od cause an accident. Also i always follow the road rules, red lights etc, you just look like a fool to the other road users when you race through against the red, i find i get more respect from people in cars by riding this way.

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what top dog ordered this crank down? its made up...

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Most Japanese streets are too narrow for bikes and cars and the sidewalks aren't much better for peds and bikes. Some common sense would go a long way but that's about as plentiful as hen's teeth. Maybe the Netherlands has a viable solution. It's bad enough on a motocycle out there, I don't want to think about a bicycle in traffic. But I have a friend who does the Enoshima to Kamakura run all the time on a bicycle. Guess it's tough to figure out.

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