With public opinion overwhelmingly negative towards them thanks to what has now become an iconic photo featuring a middle finger, entitled cyclists in Jakarta may soon also find themselves under increased scrutiny from law enforcement.
The Jakarta Metro Police said it’s considering giving fines to cyclists who ride outside of designated bike lanes in the capital, following increasing complaints that they — particularly those with flashy and expensive road bikes who ride in groups of dozens as if they were pros — have been riding on lanes designated for motorized vehicles.
“In Article 299 of the Traffic Law, the fine is IDR100K (US$7), but since this is the first time it’s going to be enforced in Indonesia, we need clear guidelines [for enforcement],” Jakarta Metro Police Traffic Department Director Sambodo Purnomo Yogo said today.
IDR100K would represent pocket change for most road bikers, so there is also the possibility that the police will seize their bikes if they’re caught violating traffic laws.
“This is a pressing matter. I’m worried that if this is ignored, there will be conflict between motorcyclists and cyclists, especially users of road bikes,” Sambodo said.
The plan has the backing of Jakarta Vice Governor Ahmad Riza Patria, whose administration plans to turn the Kampung Melayu-Tanah Abang overpass into an exclusive bike lane during certain hours of the weekend to add to a growing list of bike lanes in the city.