Before we start, are you op de fiets while reading this? If so, time to pull over because the police sure haven’t been shy about issuing fines to Whatsapping cyclists.

It’s been six months since using your phone on the bike became a fineable offence, and the police have come out in force. From July to December last year over 21,300 cyclists were slapped with fines. The majority happened in the final three months of 2019 – merry Christmas!

The Ministry of Justice and Security, the Public Prosecution Service, the police and the Central Judicial Collection Agency (CJIB) released the figures on Tuesday.

Fines across the board

But, cyclists weren’t the only targets on the list. Drivers using their phones in traffic were snagged more than 121,000 times in 2019. The year prior, only 80,000 fines were issues, although this is also because police had time off during union bargaining that year.

However, overall the number of traffic fines actually decreased. While 9.2 million infringements were logged in 2018, this reduced by almost 9 per cent in 2019. The Ministry of Justice attributes this to fewer fines for license-based offences, it becoming busier on roads making it harder to drive fast, and more warnings about speed cameras. However, that failed to help some speed demons: of the 8.4 million fines from last year, over 82 per cent were speed-related.

Have you received a traffic fine in the past year? Was it justified? Let us know in the comments below!

Feature Image: Kevin Phillips/Pixabay

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