Sometimes, you just have to ask if police chiefs actually live in the real world. At the beginning of this week, the country’s most senior officers announced a crack-down on bicycle lamps which break the law.

All those handy clip on lights which you can attach to your rucksack are a no-no they said and anyone using them would be fined. Bike lights must not flicker and they must be attached to the bike itself.
Years ago, no-one had any bike lights at all – it wasn’t considered cool. Luckily times have changed, and not least because of the availablity of handy clip-on lamps which you can keep in your bag at all times and no-one can steal.
Unlike their bosses, police officers on the street know this and many regional forces have been quick to make their position clear. In Amsterdam, Groningen, Flevoland and Brabant, flashing lights on your jacket will still be ok.
Alas, if you live in Rotterdam and Midden Nederland, you could face a fine unless your bike has fixed on lights. And in IJsseland, apparently, every case will be looked at on merit. It will be interesting to see what the courts make of all this.
One wonders if the top brains that came up with this petty plan have actually been on a bike in the last 10 years.
And you have to ask whether their time and energy could not be better spent asking why 25% of the child porn cases referred to regional police forces are never investigated. But perhaps they would rather concentrate on bullying cyclists…

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