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Cambridge trader films moment unlit cyclist pulls wheelie through two red lights at night





A Cambridge shopkeeper was shocked to capture footage of a cyclist without lights riding through a red traffic light on a roundabout while pulling a wheelie.

Neil Mackay, owner of Mackay’s hardware store, recorded the dangerous manoeuvre on his dashcam as he drove home from work.

He has started a petition to make lights on bicycles mandatory at all times after becoming concerned at the number of cyclists who ride without lights in the dark in Cambridge, but says even he was “staggered” by this latest stunt.

Neil said: “As I approached the Elizabeth Way roundabout, I saw this cyclist with no lights and an iPad holder on his handlebars and thought, I bet he jumps the red light. So I was astounded when he stopped at first. But he only stopped because there was some traffic coming around the roundabout.

“As soon as the traffic was out the way he was off, jumping the light, and then he pulled this wheelie – which takes some skill to do. He actually did a wheelie all the way around and through the next red light. And I presume he must have gone straight onto Elizabeth Way as I lost sight of him while I waited at the red light. So goodness knows how far he actually went on one wheel. I was absolutely staggered.

Images from the YouTube video which shows a cyclist ignoring traffic signals and pulling a wheelie.
Images from the YouTube video which shows a cyclist ignoring traffic signals and pulling a wheelie.

“Vast amounts are being spent by the Greater Cambridge Partnership and the Cambridgeshire County Council on what they say is improving cycle safety. They’re building all these cycle lanes and greenways, spending millions of pounds. Yet a very significant percentage of cyclists ignore their safety and the safety of other other road users.”

Neil has carried out his own survey by filming his commute between Cottenham and Cambridge on a dashcam. After examining the footage, he said 40 per cent of cyclists he filmed were riding without lights at night. He has now launched a petition, which already has 300 signatures, asking the government to make bike lights mandatory at all times.

He says: “I set up a petition trying to persuade people that they should always have proper working lights on their bikes. I get so irritated by the vast number of people who cycle without any form of lights – generally in black clothing, as was the case with this latest example. I regularly film loads of people running red lights without any lights on their bike and I think to myself, if the worst was to happen, and there was an accident, who would everybody assume was at fault? And where does anybody stand with regards to insurance if there is an accident?”

Neil Mackay, of Mackay's, has created a petition calling for all cyclists to have lights on their bikes. Picture: Keith Heppell
Neil Mackay, of Mackay's, has created a petition calling for all cyclists to have lights on their bikes. Picture: Keith Heppell

Cambridgeshire police’s casualty reduction officer, Nick Southern, said: “Rule 60 of the Highway Code states you must have a white front light and rear red light, lit, between sunset and sunrise. This is a legal requirement and would help the cyclist be seen and therefore be safe. The bike should also have a rear red reflector. Rule 59 of the Highway Code is not law, but it is good road safety practice. It recommends wearing a cycle helmet, light coloured or fluorescent clothing and something reflective. Again, it’s not the law, but it is encouraged to help keep any cyclist safer.

“The individual is this clip is seen to contravene a red traffic light. This law applies to all road users including cyclists, under section 71 of the Highway Code, informed by section 36 of the Road Traffic Act 1988.

Images from Neil Mackay’s YouTube video showing the cyclist with no lights pulling a wheelie through two red lights in Elizabeth Way, Cambridge
Images from Neil Mackay’s YouTube video showing the cyclist with no lights pulling a wheelie through two red lights in Elizabeth Way, Cambridge

“If a police officer were present at the time of the offence, I expect they would stop the cyclist to engage with them about their conduct, explain to them the offences observed and to encourage them not to continue with their conduct. If necessary and proportionate, enforce by reporting the road users for these traffic offences. If this were to happen, the cyclist could receive a fine.”

Neil’s petition can be found at: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/654147



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