In an effort to support the District’s bikers, the D.C. Police Complaints Board put forward recommendations last Thursday aimed at improving the Metropolitan Police Department’s bicycle-law enforcement.
According to The Washington Post, the Complaints Board looked into the MPD’s bike policies after repeated complaints from D.C. residents and local biking organizations.
“We’ll frequently see citations for illegal passing or hazardous driving or riding abreast [in which] the cyclist is doing exactly what they should be doing. But because the officer may not be familiar with the way the laws apply to a bicyclist, then they cite the bicyclist,” Shane Farthing, executive director of Washington Area Bicyclist Association, told the Post.
The board recommended that MPD address these problems by designing more detailed collision reports and allowing officers extended time to investigate bike accidents. They also suggested offering officers more complete training on bicycle law enforcement.
Sven Beer (MSB ’15) said that he hopes a more effective training will make riding around the Georgetown shopping district safer.
“You develop some nice skills dodging cars on M Street,” he said, adding that he is often concerned by the lack of consideration D.C. motorists show for bicyclists. “I’ve seen some road rage. In my experience, I’ve been knocked off the shoulder of roads and cut off by cars.”