Enforcement, Security & Regulations
The April report by LCPD to Sun News newspaper indicated that Las Cruces police gave 126 citations on University Ave (source: Sun-News article 4/4/13). Half of the citation were for cellular use while driving. Others were for lack of proof of insurance or driver license, for expired plates; for bicyclists not dismounting before using the crosswalk; for seat belt violations; & for failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalk. One motorist was jailed & vehicle seized for DWI revoked license.
The details at in the Sun News report at http://www.lcsun-news.com/las_cruces-news/ci_22957958/motorist-crackdown-5-hours-126-citations (print)
A summary of the LCPD report to Sun News is that the tickets included 15 for seat belt violations, 11 for cellular use while driving; and 13 for speeding, expired plates, due care, & misc.violations. Details are in the Sun News report at http://www.lcsun-news.com/las_cruces-news/ci_22874681/39-citations-issued-during-solano-drive-enforcement (print)
The tickets included 17 for speeding; 5 for cell phone use while driving; 5 for lack of proof of insurance or driver license. The details are in the Sun News report at http://www.lcsun-news.com/las_cruces-news/ci_22851376/30-citations-issued-lcpd-traffic-operations (print)
The tickets included (7) violations for cell phone use while driving, (7) for lack of insurance, (6) for failiure to wear a seat belt, and others. The details are in the Sun News report at http://www.lcsun-news.com/ci_22500068/las_cruces-financial (print)
NM laws on texting & cellular use while driving
EH&S reviewed the campus citation issued to bicyclists for traffic violations during the summer and fall 2012. For the period May 1 to Nov 28, 2012, the NMSU Police issued 409 citations for vehicle & traffic violations. Of these, 64 (16%) were for bicycle-related violations.
However, of the 409 motor vehicle violations, 144 were not applicable to bicyclists (e.g. insurance, plates, etc), leaving 245 applicable citations. So the 64 bicycle-related citations made up 24% of the 265 applicable citations.
Common Bicycle Citation: The highest single total for the period were 118 citations for failure to heed stop signs and traffic signals, of which 42% (50 incidences) were bicyclist-related.
Common Location: Of the bicycle citations, twenty-three (46%) occurred at the intersection of Williams and Steward.
Also 73% (11 of 15) of the cites for traveling the wrong way on a one way street (or wrong side of the road) were by bicyclists. Of these wrong-way riders, the majority (72%) were equally divided as occurring on Horseshoe Drive and Steward Street.
In 2002, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) awarded a grant to MassBike to develop a national program to educate police departments about laws relating to bicyclists. Here are links to the MassBike website, program materials & instructor guide and videos Right click or ctrl click (mac) and select “save target as” or “save link as” to download any of these files.
- MassBike website is http://massbike.org/projectsnew/law-officer-training/
- Presentation (27 mb PowerPoint, without links to videos)
- Reference Guide (pdf) including data on car-bike crashes and traffic laws Instructor materials
- Video clips are on the MassBike website and on UTube at http://www.youtube.com/user/MassBikeVids?feature=watch
A training video for Chicago Police Officers created in partnership between the Chicago Police Department & The Chicago Department of Transportation. Linkat http://vimeo.com/5660360
On Nov 11, 2012 Las Cruces changed and passed new bicycle ordinance to improve their bicycle friendly status. The change is in part based on 2011 recommendations from Leaque of American Bicyclist for updates and to make stronger connections between bicycling community and law enforcement. The ordinance will take effect on January 1, 2013.
Highlights of the attached draft of recommendations include:
1) Simpler, clearer language;
2) Definitions for"electrical-assisted bicycle," "pedicab," and "vulnerable user of a public way";
3) Prohibits parking in bicycle lane and multi-use path;
4) Requires minimum distance for passing bicyclist & Prohibits threats to vulnerable user;
5) Clarifies allowable sidewalk riding & bicycles in crosswalk;
6) Eliminates mandatory bicycle registration;
7) Language on impaired bicyclists;
8) Updated hand signal laws; and
9) Language matching New Mexico's helmet laws
NM laws on texting & cellular use while driving
Bicycles defined in the New Mexico Drivers Manual
"Bicycles are Vehicles" in NM MVD Driver Manual (p.25 (28)) at http://www.nmcycling.org/advocacy/NM_Driver_Manual_Jun11.pdf
This manual is also on the NM MVD Gov website at
New Mexico Statutes Annotated (NMSA) and NM Adminstrative Code (NMAC) applicable to bicyclists, pedestrians, & equestrians
- from NMDOT BPE committee NM Statutes Annotated (NMSA) and NM Adminstrative Code (NMAC) applicable to bicyclists, pedestrians, & equestrians
local copy of NM Statues Annotated (NMSA) & NMMAC applicable to BPE
- New Mexico Administrative Code Relating to Bicycles at http://www.nmcycling.org/advocacy/NM_Bike_Admin_Code.html
What are SHARROWS? (New Mexico Driver Manual)
“Sharrows” are “shared lane pavement markings.” They are painted on the pavement when a road is too narrow for side-by-side road sharing with slower vehicles. They indicate that bicyclists are encouraged to take the whole travel lane and that motorists shall yield to the bicyclist as needed. For news about sharrows markings added to campus streets see http://bikes.nmsu.edu/bikeped_standards.html#campus_sharrow
As a motorist, what should I do in the presence of sharrows?
• Slow down and yield to bicyclists in the roadway.
• Pass bicyclists only when the roadway width allows bicyclists to move to the right.
• Try to give bicyclists at least five feet of clearance when passing. [Note that the Las Cruces Ordinances requires a minimum of 3 feet separation for cars/small trucks (6 feet for larger trucks) when passing a bicyclist on city streets.]
As a bicyclist, what should I do in the presence of sharrows?
• As a bicyclist, you may ride on the center of the sharrow.
• Keep a safe distance from the “door zone” of parked cars.
• Move right to let vehicles pass when it is safe to do so.
A video for bicyclists on 'Lane Positioning' from the League of Americian Bicyclist is at http://youtu.be/nuqxkz_eo8Y
“Cyclists fare best when they act and are treated as drivers of vehicles.”