Section 19-176. Bicycle operation on sidewalks prohibited  


Latest version.
  • a. For purposes of
      this section:
        (1)  The  term "bicycle" shall mean a two or three wheeled device upon
      which a person or persons may ride, propelled by human power  through  a
      belt, a chain or gears, with such wheels in a tandem or tricycle, except
      that  it shall not include such a device having solid tires and intended
      for use only on a sidewalk by a child.
        (2) The term "sidewalk" shall mean that portion of the street, whether
      paved or unpaved, between the curb lines  or  the  lateral  lines  of  a
      roadway  and  the  adjacent  property  lines,  intended  for  the use of
      pedestrians. Where it is not clear which section is intended for the use
      of pedestrians the sidewalk will be deemed to be  that  portion  of  the
      street between the building line and the curb.
        (3)  The  term "child" shall mean a person less than fourteen years of
      age.
        b. No person shall ride a bicycle upon any sidewalk  unless  permitted
      by  an  official  sign.  A  person  who violates this subdivision may be
      issued a notice of violation and shall be liable for a civil penalty  of
      not more than one hundred dollars which may be recovered in a proceeding
      before the environmental control board.
        c.  A  person  who  violates subdivision b of this section in a manner
      that endangers any other  person  or  property  shall  be  guilty  of  a
      misdemeanor,  punishable  by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars
      or imprisonment for not more than twenty days  or  both  such  fine  and
      imprisonment.  Such  person  shall also be liable for a civil penalty of
      not less than one hundred dollars nor more than three  hundred  dollars,
      except  where  a  hearing  officer  has  determined that where there was
      physical contact between the rider and  another  person,  an  additional
      civil  penalty  of  not  less than one hundred dollars nor more than two
      hundred dollars may be imposed. Such civil penalties may be recovered in
      a proceeding before the environmental control board. Enforcement  agents
      shall  indicate on the summons or notice of violation issued pursuant to
      this subdivision whether physical contact was made between the rider and
      another  person.  Any  person  who  violates  any  provision   of   this
      subdivision  more than once within any six month period shall be subject
      to the imposition of civil penalties in an amount that  is  double  what
      would  otherwise  have  been  imposed  for  the  commission  of  a first
      violation. It shall be an  affirmative  defense  that  physical  contact
      between a rider and another person was in no way the fault of the rider.
        d. Where a summons or notice of violation is issued for a violation of
      subdivision c of this section, the bicycle may be seized and impounded.
        e.  A  bicycle impounded pursuant to this section shall be released to
      the owner or other person lawfully entitled to possession  upon  payment
      of  the  costs  of  removal and storage as set forth in the rules of the
      police department and proof of payment of any fine or civil penalty  for
      the  violation  or,  if  a  proceeding for the violation is pending in a
      court or before the environmental control board, upon the posting  of  a
      bond or other form of security acceptable to the police department in an
      amount which will assure the payment of such costs and any fine or civil
      penalty  which  may  be  imposed  for the violation. If the court or the
      environmental  control  board  finds  in  favor  of  the  defendant   or
      respondent,  the  owner shall be entitled forthwith to possession of the
      bicycle without charge or  to  the  extent  that  any  amount  has  been
      previously  paid  for  release  of  the  bicycle,  such  amount shall be
      refunded. The police department shall establish by rule the time  within
      which  bicycles  which  are not redeemed may be deemed abandoned and the
      procedures for disposal.
    
        f. The owner of a bicycle shall be given the opportunity  for  a  post
      seizure  hearing  within  five  business  days  before the environmental
      control board regarding the impoundment. The environmental control board
      shall render a  determination  within  three  business  days  after  the
      conclusion of the hearing. Where the board finds that there was no basis
      for the impoundment, the owner shall be entitled forthwith to possession
      of  the bicycle without charge or to the extent that any amount has been
      previously paid for  release  of  the  bicycle,  such  amount  shall  be
      refunded.
        g. Upon the impoundment of a bicycle, the rider shall be given written
      notice  of the procedure for redemption of the bicycle and the procedure
      for requesting a post seizure hearing. Where the rider of a  bicycle  is
      not the owner thereof notice provided to the rider shall be deemed to be
      notice  to  the  owner.  Where  the defendant or respondent is less than
      eighteen years old such notice shall  also  be  mailed  to  the  parent,
      guardian  or where relevant, employer of the respondent, if the name and
      address of such person is reasonably ascertainable.
        h. In any proceeding under this section it  shall  be  an  affirmative
      defense  that  the  defendant or respondent was less than fourteen years
      old at the time the violation was committed.
        i. The provisions of this  section  may  be  enforced  by  the  police
      department  or designated employees of the department, the department of
      sanitation, the department of parks and recreation.