domingo, 15 de abril de 2018

Controlling the Motorized Bicycles?

A bicycle with a motor is a motorcycle.
A bici-motor crossing a
pedestrian plaza.
The other day, El Tiempo published this damning editorial denouncing the so-called 'bici-motos,' or bicycles with small gasoline motors mounted on them, which in plain terms are just small motorcycles.

El Tiempo points out that the "dangerous, illegal and polluting bicimotos" roar along the bike lanes in
"flagrant violation" of the laws banning them and exposing cyclists to dangers from these high-velocity vehicles.

The editorialist, who might not be a cyclist, doesn't mention how unpleasant cycling is when one is stuck behind one of these noisy, fume-spewing vehicles.

A bici-motorist (left) passing a line of bicyclists in a Bogotá bike lane.
"There is no justification for exposing cyclists to such dangers," the editorial concludes.

The problem with these vehicles is sympomatic of several Colombian infirmities: lack of law enforcement, apathy toward pollution and an absurd degree of legalism. The bici-motos enjoy  legal immunity thanks either to authorities' apathy or to the legal fantasy that motors smaller than a certain number of cubic centimeters are not really motors at all - even tho they're often noisier and more polluting than automobiles.

By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours

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