New traffic laws aimed at protecting cyclists approved at Regina City Council

Regina City Council approved changes to the Traffic Safety Bylaw aimed at better protecting cyclists on city roads.

Of the six changes, five of them include fines.

The first change will require drivers to be cautious when approaching any special hazard with respect to cyclists, failure to do so results in a $180 fine.

Amendment number two prohibits drivers from following a cyclist at less than a reasonable distance, without regard for the speed of the bicycle. The penalty for this is $100.

The third change prohibits drivers from passing a cyclist in the same lane they are occupying, carrying a $85 fine.

Drivers will not be allowed to pass cyclists at more than 50 km/h, or for streets with speed limits greater than 80 km/h, they are not allowed to pass at a speed faster than 70 km/h. Exceptions include passing a cyclist who are in bike lanes, and where more than two lane are going the same direction.

The city added bicycles to section 53 of Traffic Bylaw which prohibits people from opening a car door unless safe to do, and they increased the fine from $70 to $180.

The last change allows cyclists to bike the opposite way on a one-way street where a bike lane exists.

The city says Public Service Announcements about the changes will be rolled out soon.

Mayor Sandra Masters says council will see how the new changes unfold and make any necessary changes from there.

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