With the April Fools shenanigans I missed this news from New York City: Rodney Seymour was doored by a truck driver while cycling home from work. When Seymour insisted on an accident report from the responding NYPD officer, the policeman got upset and issued Seymour two traffic tickets — one for riding without a bell and another for lacking side wheel reflectors — before apologizing to the truck driver for the inconvenience and letting him go without a ticket.
The city’s pro-bike policies will have trouble gaining momentum if invalid and trivial infractions, like riding without reflectors or a bell, get stricter enforcement from NYPD than potentially deadly actions like dooring.
Seymour’s lawyer is correct that New York’s vehicle code on bicycle equipment only specifies wheel reflectors on new bicycles:
1236 (d) Every new bicycle shall be equipped with reflective tires or, alternately a reflex reflector mounted on the spokes of each wheel, said tires and reflectors to be of types approved by the commissioner.