Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Bob_Hornsby
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Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Bob_Hornsby » Tue Oct 31, 2017 10:18 am

Hello, I am cycling every working day from Hornsby to Lindfield and back.

This morning, at Kuringai Avenue, small street going uphill, I was stopped by a policeman and fined for crossing a stop sign without stopping.

Since it was uphill I was not going more than 5km/h, and clearly was very observant recorded by the camera on my helmet.

Do I have any chance in the court ?

Needless to say there was no any traffic, so I guess they did not have anyone else to pick up.

Thanks for your thoughts !

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Thoglette
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Thoglette » Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:08 am

Bob_Hornsby wrote:Do I have any chance in the court ?


Did you stop? Do you have evidence?
If the answer to either is "no" you're out on a limb, hoping that the officer can't be bothered turning up in court and it gets thrown out.
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RonK
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby RonK » Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:12 am

None, if you didn't stop. A stop sign, is not a Give Way sign.
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bychosis
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby bychosis » Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:15 am

Unless you want to take one for the team and make a test case for introducing the Idaho stop? Is it worth getting some publicity for that?
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tcdev
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby tcdev » Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:16 am

This is more of an opinion than knowledgeable advice, but here goes.

As stupid as this law is (for bicycles) my opinion is that if we want to be treated with the same respect on the road as other vehicles - and let's face it, that is cyclists' biggest battle these days - then we need to respect the road rules like others need to. I can't see you having any recourse in court - "there was no other traffic" isn't a valid excuse for other road users, so why should it be one for you. Personally, I wouldn't pursue it, even on principle.

Having said all that, I'm all for the "Idaho Stop" law being enacted in Australia. At the speeds cyclists approach intersections, the small distances we have for stopping, and the (lack of) capacity to cause injury to others, the risks are negligible.

I regularly ride through one particular intersection near home on quiet back streets with a stop sign, turning left where I can see oncoming traffic from every direction *well* before I get to the line (on that point, why the stop sign is there I can't imagine). The biggest risk to my safety is when turning around to ensure there's not a cop car behind me before I roll through it. But if I ever did get busted, I'd cop it on the chin. Grudgingly.
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Bob_Hornsby
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Bob_Hornsby » Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:42 am

Thanks for your remarks.

I was cycling up a hill, a trady with a trailer just overtook me. He stopped so I had to stop behind, but that was let us say 6m from the sign (car+trailer), then I went in. It is so unfair, because I choose these back streets as a safer alternative to Pacific Highway where police does nothing to enforce the law.

hill I am climbing-
https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-33.7270844,151.1344878,3a,75y,270h,90t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sO5uOVsexOLXjDLSYtZEezQ!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

turning right-

https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-33.7270844,151.1344878,3a,75y,90h,90t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sO5uOVsexOLXjDLSYtZEezQ!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

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Nate
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Nate » Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:50 am

you didnt stop at a stop sign - take it on the chin & obey all road rules in future

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby duncanm » Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:01 pm

it does suck -- but rules are rules.

I'd tell the officer I'll be just taking a rest on the footpath and watching eagerly as he proceeds to book 90% of cars going through the intersection that will do exactly what you did.

Bob_Hornsby
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Bob_Hornsby » Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:24 pm

It pisses me off that I never had intention of breaking the rule/law. BTW, what exactly means to stop for a cyclist, to have a foot on the ground ?
How far from a stop sign ?

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silentC
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby silentC » Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:35 pm

I think you're unlucky to get a cop who would book you for that. I ride with one and he says he would not book a cyclist for it, and indeed he rolls through them himself.

To stop I would imagine is the same as for a car: your wheels must stop turning completely. For most cyclists, that would mean a foot on the ground. I think there have been cases of people track standing also being booked for not stopping because the cop expected them to put a foot down.

FWIW I roll through one every time I go out on a ride, but I do have a good look around first, just in case.
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Scott_C » Tue Oct 31, 2017 1:09 pm

Bob_Hornsby wrote:BTW, what exactly means to stop for a cyclist, to have a foot on the ground ?

In WA, "stop , in relation to a vehicle, means to stop the vehicle and permit it to remain stationary..." the exact definition may vary in other states (WA likes to be different for no particular reason) and the term vehicle includes a bicycle.

There is no requirement to put a foot down in WA but it is generally easier if you do.

Bob_Hornsby wrote:How far from a stop sign ?

Again in WA you have to stop, "as near as practicable to, but before reaching the stop line; or if there is no stop line — before entering the intersection. "

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby uart » Tue Oct 31, 2017 1:38 pm

Bob_Hornsby wrote:It pisses me off that I never had intention of breaking the rule/law. BTW, what exactly means to stop for a cyclist, to have a foot on the ground ?

Yes I'd be pissed off too Bob.

This is actually a safety issue in my opinion. This law is ostensibly about safety, when applied to cyclists however it's often forcing us into a less safe position! That's my main gripe with it.

Take your situation of turning right at slow speed from Kuruah Rd to Kuringai Ave. The *only* safety issue is you being able to clear the intersection before someone in a car comes down Kuringai, with "right of way", to turn right at the bottom there. If you're too slow off the mark then it's an unsafe situation (for you). Stopping, uncleating and placing your foot on the ground only makes you more unsafe, it increases the time you spend in a vulnerable position as a sitting duck in the middle of the road, and it also makes you slower to subsequently clear the intersection.

All traffic matters can be elected to be heard in court and it's your right to do so. You don't need to "lawyer up" or anything. You just have to turn up and give your side of the story. The Magistrate can impose a harsher penalty, but they can also impose a lesser one or dismiss the case altogether. Just mention the safety aspect of the situation.

BTW. If you do elect to have it heard in court then the cop who booked you will have to attend. He will have other duties he is supposed to be doing, so at the very least it will pee off his "boss" if he has to attend court for something so trivial (and who knows, may even encourage him to use more discretion in the future). I know it's a waste of your time as well, but I truly believe that the worst case outcome would just be the fine upheld.

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bychosis
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby bychosis » Tue Oct 31, 2017 1:58 pm

agree. You can't argue that you did stop if you didn't, but you can argue the need to maintain safety. Yuo had already stopped. There was no way you were 'blasting through' the intersection. You had slowed enough to give way to all traffic. It would have been difficult to stop completely, then clip in, restart etc and in dong so increase the risk for you at the intersection and not increase the risk for others in doing so. This may be quite easy to show if you have video footage.

Again: You might get off a bit lighter, or you may not. But you might highlight the issue for the media/law/police officer involved and make a tiny bit of progress towards Idaho stop laws.
bychosis (bahy-koh-sis): A mental disorder of delusions indicating impaired contact with a reality of no bicycles.

Bob_Hornsby
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Bob_Hornsby » Tue Oct 31, 2017 2:48 pm

Thank you so much for your replays, especially @uart and @bychosis.

If anyone is vulnerable in that interaction, it is the cyclist.
Even if I loose in the court, hopefully it will bring the issue closer to legislative bodies and things may start changing.

Thanks again !

am50em
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby am50em » Tue Oct 31, 2017 3:40 pm

There is also review option asking for leniency (special circumstances - maybe safety?)
http://www.revenue.nsw.gov.au/fines/pn/review
http://www.revenue.nsw.gov.au/fines/pn/ ... cide-court
Cannot do both.

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Bob_Hornsby » Tue Oct 31, 2017 4:21 pm

Thanks @am50em !

It seems that you can ask for review and still go to court (under Can I have my penalty reviewed without going to court?)

"If you request a review and the outcome is not in your favour, you will have 28 days to advise us if you wish to have the penalty decided in court."

Am I interpreting this correctly ?

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Warin
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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Warin » Tue Oct 31, 2017 6:41 pm

Bob_Hornsby wrote: I was stopped by a policeman and fined for crossing a stop sign without stopping.

Since it was uphill I was not going more than 5km/h, and clearly was very observant recorded by the camera on my helmet.

Do I have any chance in the court ?


Guilty. For the facts given.
You may appeal for a lesser fine and/or not recording a conviction but you will have to have a very good case for this. If you want to take this to court - get a very very good lawyer.

A stop requires that the vehicle comes to a complete stop. You do not have to put your foot on the ground, but the vehicle must cease movement e.g wheel stops rotation. I believe there is case law for a motorcycle on the feet not being require to be placed on the ground and that could be used for a bicycle. But that is not your case.

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby find_bruce » Tue Oct 31, 2017 6:56 pm

A very very good lawyer will cost you more than the fine. I agree with others that the law sucks & the cop has probably applied it in an arbitrary way.

Sadly as you say you didn't stop, you will be found guilty. You could try a grovelling letter for review, but don't hold out too much hope.

Still it could be worse you could be the former NSW Roads Minister Michael Daley who claims he didn't know about the automatic license suspension.

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby am50em » Tue Oct 31, 2017 7:10 pm

Bob_Hornsby wrote:Thanks @am50em !

It seems that you can ask for review and still go to court (under Can I have my penalty reviewed without going to court?)

"If you request a review and the outcome is not in your favour, you will have 28 days to advise us if you wish to have the penalty decided in court."

Am I interpreting this correctly ?

Yes. I should have said you cannot do both simultaneously.

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby human909 » Tue Oct 31, 2017 7:15 pm

tcdev wrote:As stupid as this law is (for bicycles) my opinion is that if we want to be treated with the same respect on the road as other vehicles - and let's face it, that is cyclists' biggest battle these days - then we need to respect the road rules like others need to.

I'm sorry but that is hogwash.

The same logic drove Bicycle Network (Bicycle Victoria) to press for larger fines for cyclists to gain respect. Guess what, no effect. Lets stop pretending bicycles are cars. They are not. The more we do the more we get pushed to the sidelines.

Nate wrote:you didnt stop at a stop sign - take it on the chin & obey all road rules in future

Why? Why obey rules when doing so will put yourself at greater risk?

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Derny Driver » Tue Oct 31, 2017 8:07 pm

Go to court and represent yourself. Talk about the safety aspect.
Read out a written explanation of what happened from your point of view. Admit guilt but ask for a caution to be issued.
The cop will have to attend and bring with him paperwork, photographs of the intersection and so on.
If nothing else, it will make him think twice about handing out petty fines next time.
I recently had a speed camera penalty quashed just because I filled out the court election.
My son who is 20 also represented himself when he accidentally parked in a poorly signposted disabled zone at Uni. The fine was reduced from $520 to $200 by the magistrate.
The worst thing that can happen is the fine will be upheld and some court costs added.
If everyone elected to fight these fines, they would not be issued so readily.

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby g-boaf » Tue Oct 31, 2017 9:35 pm

tcdev wrote:This is more of an opinion than knowledgeable advice, but here goes.

As stupid as this law is (for bicycles) my opinion is that if we want to be treated with the same respect on the road as other vehicles


I'm sorry, but that is rubbish. If you are moving at 3-4km/h, that's enough. Or what about if you track stand. That is also effectively not going anywhere into the intersection, but people still get targeted for it. And it's nonsense.

All of this "if we want to be treated with the same respect on the road" is really nonsense. Every rider could obey every single law to the letter and someone will still complain because you are on the road, in front of them, blocking their way, or just even the fact of being so daring as to use a bike on the road to go somewhere, instead of just as a 20km/h play-thing on the local park pathway... Uh, yeah... :roll:

In Europe there is none of this rubbish. The car drivers are brilliant over there. And I know that riders don't stop completely all the time. And yet the sky doesn't fall down, and riders are still treated with respect. Even road bike riders. I was over there recently and did a huge amount of riding (something like 900km of it) on city roads, through villages, on country roads, main roads, etc.

There was absolutely no question of this "if we want to be treated with the same respect". Everyone respects everyone else regardless. :!:

And besides, the "same respect on the road as other vehicles" in Australia means getting tailgated, harassed, forced off the road, chased down, etc. Or the VW Scirocco R doing 120km/h in a 60km/h zone down the wrong side of a four lane road to get ahead of the traffic queue... Seen that too, multiple times, same car. Although the guy seems to have a different colour Scirocco R now, so the other one must have been crashed and written off...

What kind of respect is that? And what does that say about our motorists? The fines shouldn't be at some rider doing a tiny speed uphill to avoid having to stop and start again (with difficulty). Should be aggressive enforcement against bad driving behaviour. Then there will be respect.

Derny Driver wrote:Go to court and represent yourself. Talk about the safety aspect.
Read out a written explanation of what happened from your point of view. Admit guilt but ask for a caution to be issued.
The cop will have to attend and bring with him paperwork, photographs of the intersection and so on.
If nothing else, it will make him think twice about handing out petty fines next time.
I recently had a speed camera penalty quashed just because I filled out the court election.
My son who is 20 also represented himself when he accidentally parked in a poorly signposted disabled zone at Uni. The fine was reduced from $520 to $200 by the magistrate.
The worst thing that can happen is the fine will be upheld and some court costs added.
If everyone elected to fight these fines, they would not be issued so readily.



Amen to that! Okay, I think my rant is done now. ;)

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby eldavo » Wed Nov 01, 2017 12:39 am

Just remember your twin brother Bob in the UK's address details and use his accent next time. They can send the fine to his address.

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby Bob_Hornsby » Wed Nov 01, 2017 8:47 am

eldavo wrote:Just remember your twin brother Bob in the UK's address details and use his accent next time. They can send the fine to his address.



Well, clearly I had to identify myself and carry identification by the new law, as I always did.

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Re: Fined for not stopping at stop sign uphill

Postby g-boaf » Wed Nov 01, 2017 8:49 am

Bob_Hornsby wrote:
eldavo wrote:Just remember your twin brother Bob in the UK's address details and use his accent next time. They can send the fine to his address.



Well, clearly I had to identify myself and carry identification by the new law, as I always did.


hang on a moment, that was not adopted, was it?

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