Cyclist sending a message about equal rights to the road
Jason Gaidola, CTV Winnipeg
Published Friday, May 24, 2019 3:45AM CST
A Winnipeg cyclist said he wants to send a message about equal rights when using city roads.
Downtown commuter Eric Reder said he believes his bike was deliberately damaged after an altercation with a semi truck driver near the intersection of Smith Street and Portage Avenue Tuesday.
He said the incident began when a driver of the semi truck began honking at him to switch lanes.
“I asked him what was wrong, and if he felt it was a good idea to be rolling up on cyclists and honking at them,” Reder explained.
“At that point, he popped the clutch and rolled over my rear wheel of my bicycle,” he added.
Reder said he flagged down a police cruiser shortly after. Winnipeg Police Service confirmed the events and said no charges were laid against the driver.
Reder added that he believes more safety is needed for bike riders.
The incident caught the attention of some bike enthusiasts.
“Waiting behind a person sitting on a bike, or in a car, isn't going to make a difference,” executive director of Bike Winnipeg, Mark Cohoe said.
Cohoe said he believes bike safety is becoming a priority in the city, but it still is far from being completely safe.
The City of Winnipeg committed more than $6.25 million in bike infrastructure in its 2019 budget including the Garry Street Renewal project with protected bike lanes.
City councillor Matt Allard said he believes the street’s resurfacing will be suitable for plenty of downtown bike riders.
“You can move a lot of people on bikes, with very little space, relative to someone in a private vehicle,” Allard said.
He added that he expects the project to be completed this year.