NEWS
09/21/2015 11:39 EDT | Updated 09/21/2016 01:12 EDT

Montreal cyclist safety recommendations include allowing use of some sidewalks

The City of Montreal released 20 recommendations for improvements to Quebec's Highway Safety Code today, including allowing cyclists to ride on sidewalks in some circumstances.

The city also wants to crack down on "impaired cycling" and increase fines for any cyclist that breaks the law. 

Right now, the law against impaired driving is included in the federal criminal code and specifies that the driver must be operating a motorized vehicle. The city's recommendations state that any provincial penalties for drunk cycling would need to be in line with the criminal legislation.

The recommendations say that cyclists should be allowed to use sidewalks where signage exists permitting it. If no signs are posted, only children should be allowed to ride on walkways.

However, it says that under certain conditions, including where it is clearly dangerous for cyclists to ride on the shoulder of the road, cyclists should be allowed to ride on sidewalks.

It also recommends speed limits for cyclists on sidewalks.

Other recommendations include allowing cyclists in some reserved bus lanes and mandating safety equipment on trucks that prevent cyclists from rolling underneath and get caught up in wheels.

The provincial government is looking at ways to improve the highway code.

Quebec Transport Minister Robert Poëti is expected to table proposed changes before the end of the year.