cyclist in a bicycle lane

Toronto Sun files

TORONTO – So now we’re not allowed within a metre of a cyclist.

Must be for our own safety. Those dudes bite. Drive too close and you’re liable to get poked in the eye with a middle finger.

Not to mention the affront to our noses. Take a whiff of a bike lane on this hot, sweaty, late-summer day. Exactly. One metre is not nearly far enough.

But a metre it is. Among Ontario road rules that kick in on Tuesday, drivers can be fined $110, with two demerit points, for not giving cyclists a wide berth when passing, at least a metre when “practical.”

In other nanny state news, penalties for distracted driving soar to $490 and three demerit points, which is a pure cash grab. And you must slow down and move over for a working tow truck, which makes safety sense though the $490 donation to Kathleen Wynne’s coffers is highway robbery.

You can’t “door” a cyclist, either, not even accidentally, or risk a whopping $365 fine and three demerit points.

Naturally, the bicycult is passing around the Kool-Aid. “Good news!” beams Cycle Toronto, formerly the Toronto Cyclists Union.

The bike nut lobby group even claims credit for limiting fines on improper bicycle lighting.

Its website proclaims, “the province was originally considering increasing the fine for riding without lights from $20 to $500. We raised issues with this at Queen’s Park and are pleased with the more modest increase (to $110).”

Bully for Cycle Toronto. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. But remember that other cliche: “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.”

Ontario’s new rules are aimed mostly at motorists.

Listen, not even a bicycult-basher like me is in favour of wiping out cyclists by flinging open my car door as they approach.

“Dooring” is dangerous and ought to be illegal. Check your side mirror before you exit your car, for crying out loud. A Raleigh Cyclone can really scratch up your paint.

But fair is fair. Cyclists are often the worst scofflaws on our streets. The Wynne nanny agency’s Making Ontario’s Roads Safer Act seems to be a work in progress, so let’s help her crack down on outlaw cyclists.

Start with a reverse one-metre rule. Bicyclists must stay three feet away from any car, pedestrian or pet. And away from each other, so they can’t gang up. Fine: $1,000. The Wynne mob will make a bundle.

Bike lane tolls. Since cyclists insist on their own asphalt — even in deepest, coldest January when only the kookiest of them are out — let them pay for it.

What part of sideWALK and crossWALK don’t they understand? Down around Dundas Square, we are accustomed to dodging daredevils who assume they’re just different words for “my own private bike path.”

Cyclist demerit points. Pesky pedal pushers can run red lights, ignore signs, scare babies, flip off drivers and contravene every single line in the Making Ontario’s Roads Safer Act — without a black mark by their name.

If a car driver accumulates 15 points, his licence is suspended.

Toronto has no bike licence — and the last thing we need is more bureaucracy — so may I suggest other punishments for a chronic offender cyclist, such as making him use training wheels or wear a hat that says, “Kick Me, I’m a Bike Kook.”

Funny, eh, how cyclists dominate so much of Toronto’s traffic debate, with their constant whine for special lanes, despite their miniscule role in our daily commute — 1.3% according to Statistics Canada.

I suppose every municipality has its traffic squawkers.

Up in Kagawong, the biggest pain in the rear-view mirror is “wild” turkeys.

They think they own the streets, especially the road that leads to my cabin just north of Ontario’s Prettiest Village.

Locals call them the KGB, the Kagawong Gobble Brigade. The big birds often swarm you as you grind your gears up the ridge that rings Mudge Bay on Lake Huron’s North Channel. The toms are especially combative.

Kagawongians are divided over what to do about this menace. But most expect the problem to vanish right around Thanksgiving.

Not here in the Big Smoke. The Toronto bicycultist is a much tougher, gamier bird.

Source: Toronto Sun