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Concerns for Cyclists and Safety

The Sarnia Police Service would like to remind the public that the use of bicycles on sidewalks is limited to wheels no larger than 20 inches (51 centimeters) in diameter. A ticket issued for this under By-Law #100 of 1996 (26 (b)) requires the offender to attend court to determine the fine if found guilty.

The intent of the By-Law is to allow young children to cycle on the sidewalk while they learn how to ride. The concern is that there are many hazards when cycling on the sidewalks. If a cyclist strikes a pedestrian, the injuries can be severe. People with physical disabilities are especially vulnerable as they may not be able to avoid cyclists that are riding on sidewalks and nor should they have to avoid them.

It is understood that some individuals feel uncomfortable riding on busy roads but some pedestrians using a sidewalk have that uneasy feeling as a cyclist rides by at high rates of speed.

The City of Sarnia has already constructed some bike lanes within the City, for example, in the area of Colborne Road, Michigan Avenue, and Cathcart Boulevard. To help protect cyclists even further the Province of Ontario, in the last several years, has implemented a new Highway Traffic Act law requiring vehicles to move over at least one meter from a cyclist when passing.

Keep in mind that riding your bicycle through crosswalks is also an offence under the Highway Traffic Act which carries a total fine of $110. Rules of the road apply to bicycles just like they apply to motor vehicles, for example, stopping at red lights and stop signs.

Our officers will be out attempting to educate and remind individuals of these rules with the intent of ensuring everyone’s safety.

The Sarnia Police Service is asking everyone to please share the sidewalks and roads in a safe manner. We hold everyone’s safety as our paramount concern.

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