Update: This Weekend in Carlisle

Yesterday we posted a copy of an email sent to the Carlisle Chief of Police, in response to complaints we received from numerous riders who were pulled over this past weekend. Please see the initial post here.

Riders OK to Ride Two Abreast in Carlisle

Police Chief Dismisses Existence of Single-File Ordinance

By RICHARD FRIES, Executive Director

CARLISLE, Mass. (Feb. 24, 2016) - During a one-day crusade by an apparent rogue police officer last Sunday, dozens of riders were pulled over and informed that the Town of Carlisle had banned cycling two abreast. Even when riders outlined state law, the officer politely informed all that a new town ordinance had superseded state law.  

When asked about the situation over the weekend Carlisle Police Chief John C. Fisher stated clearly that the town did not have any ordinance that varied from state law regarding bicycles riding two abreast. He did not explain why the officer took such actions but he did clarify that his department has no policy instructing officers to restrict the actions of bicyclists riding lawfully. He promise to investigate the actions taken over the weekend.

"We don't want anybody thinking badly about Carlisle," said Chief Fisher.

The officer in question was not identified. No statement was made regarding any disciplinary action or his current standing with the Carlisle Police Department.   

Located about 17 miles northwest of Boston, Carlisle is a rural, bedroom community. With the Minuteman Bikeway corridor ending in neighboring Bedford, Carlisle hosts a network of country roads popular with touring clubs, racing teams and charity groups. Although large groups of cyclists do gather along such routes as 225 and occasionally delay traffic, there are almost no traffic lights and the main roads are relatively wide. Cars are occasionally delayed briefly on the narrow winding roadways.  

MassBike has offered to host a forum with Carlisle residents, police, and officials to discuss ways of improving understand between all parties. There has been no response to that offer.

We advise all cyclists, motorists, and law enforcement to be well educated on the rules of the road. You can learn about some of the basics that you need to know through our safety video here.



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