Cyclists in Portsmouth caught without lights after dark in police and council operation 

Portsmouth City Council working with Hampshire Constabulary to encourage cycling visibility in the city
Portsmouth City Council working with Hampshire Constabulary to encourage cycling visibility in the city
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CYCLISTS must make themselves visible or risk hefty fines, the council has said.

The warning comes after eight cyclists in Portsmouth were caught over a period of three evenings for cycling in the dark without lights - leading to fines which totalled £400.

Across January and February Portsmouth City Council's safer travel team held events in partnership with Hampshire Constabulary to encourage good visibility among cyclists.

Police officers positioned themselves in Copnor Road, Burnaby Road and Albert Road and stopped bike riders if they weren't properly and safely equipped for cycling at night time.

Of the 165 cyclists spoken to, eight were fined £50 for cycling without lights after dark - which is illegal and subject to a fixed penalty notice.

The council's head of transport, Councillor Lynne Stagg, was keen to see cycle safety improve in the city. She said: 'Once the clocks change in October we see an increase in cycle collisions, with 55 per cent occurring in the hours of darkness.

'This is a really crucial time to reach out to cyclists and remind them about the need to be bright, be seen, and ensure that all road users remain at less risk of incidents.'

Inspector Marcus Cator, added: 'This type of event with our local partners is really important to us. They are much more than stopping people riding on the pavements or without lights, it’s about being out on the streets engaging with our community and helping to prevent or solve crimes.'

The cyclists were given the option to purchase lights within 28 days from one of the council's recommended suppliers who fit the lights for free so that the £50 fine would be dropped.

All cyclists that were stopped were given free rucksack covers, reflective drawstring bags and temporary lights.