PAVEMENT cyclists are facing a crackdown after being branded anti-social by city leaders.
Complaints about people riding on the footways are to be centrally logged for the first time in order to build up a city-wide picture of problem areas.
The city-wide “hot spot” map will then be used to identify streets where beefed-up surveillance measures will be put in place, including extra police patrols where officers will fine bike users who repeatedly mount the pavement.
The move follows a series of complaints about “near misses” between cyclists and pedestrians in the heart of Edinburgh.
It is illegal to cycle on the pavement in Scotland - apart from sections which are officially designated as cycleways - but police officers often turn a blind eye to the offence while many cyclists are unaware of the law. Cyclists who fall foul of the law can receive a fixed penalty notice – which includes a fine – but if they challenge the charge the offence can be passed on to the procurator fiscal.
In the year to October 2013, only three fixed penalty notices were issued to Edinburgh cyclists.
With growing numbers of cyclists taking to the streets, and new cycle lanes which cross city centre pavements being introduced, it is felt that the time is right to take action against those cyclists who flout the existing laws,
The city’s transport convener Lesley Hinds said: “If it is classed as antisocial behaviour we can start recording the complaints, gather information that we can work with the police to enforce it.”
People do have concerns for pedestrian, particularly the elderly and frail, when people cycle on narrow pavements.
“That is a concern and the report highlights that it’s illegal to cycle on pavements unless its a designated shared space or cycle path,” added Cllr Hinds.
The clampdown on cyclists mounting kerbs comes just months after the launch of a fortnight-long blitz on rogue riders who skip through red lights and cycle along pavements in areas of the Capital like Haymarket and the West End.