Schoolgirl first to be booked for using a cell phone while cycling

07/06/2011
By

YOKOHAMA (majirox news) – A 15-year-old high school girl has earned the dubious honor of becoming Japan’s first person to be booked for using a cell phone while riding her bicycle, police here said July 4.

The girl was given a ticket under a Kanagawa Prefectural Government ordinance that came into effect on May 1 banning cyclists from engaging in other dangerous activities while riding, such as using cell phones or listening to music through headphones.

A police officer using a megaphone ordered the schoolgirl four times to stop looking at her phone as she rode, but she ignored him, so he stopped her and gave the teen a ticket, police said.

The girl, who faces a fine of up to 50,000 yen (about $618), admitted to the charges. “I thought I’d be all right if I was only riding a bicycle,” she told the police.

Police said the girl was arrested on the night of July 3 after she ignored the officer’s repeated orders to stop looking at her phone as she rode through the streets of Hiratsuka, Kanagawa prefecture.

kenji@majiroxnews.com

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4 Responses to Schoolgirl first to be booked for using a cell phone while cycling

  1. Casper on 07/11/2011 at 9:51 am

    Unless the Kanagawa Prefectural Government has informed EVERYONE of this ordinance (by mail, etc.), I do not think that she should be ticketed. That police officer needs to “get a life!” I have dealt with that “type” of police officer, they should get a job that they really like! Not harass young, school girls – I mean REALLY…!

    • anothergaijin on 09/06/2011 at 10:25 am

      Um…that girl deserves the ticket for ignoring a police officer’s warning, FOUR times! If she would have just stopped the first time when asked to, she could have just gone around the corner and continued to use her phone.

      I hate people on bikes that use mobiles, they never look where they are going and are a danger to other people. This girl got what she deserves!

  2. MikeMc on 09/07/2011 at 10:32 am

    I am often obstructed by people on bicycles using cell phones – come on cycling and looking at your text messages – the police are doing their job by trying to stop it (I am a cyclist too by the way)

  3. Casper on 09/09/2011 at 2:30 am

    If I were the girl, I would tell the police officer – I will accept the ticket IF you give all those people who park on a “No Parking” street a ticket, too! Double standard here.

    And, I have seen MANY drivers in cars on cell phones and that is even more dangerous.

    If this photo of the girl was the one that they used in court, I would protest the ticket. If you noticed, there is NO ONE near her OR her bicycle. And eventhough she is using a cell phone, you can tell that she is looking straight ahead (even with her sunglasses on)and not speeding. Therefore, she is endangering no one in this photo.

    To me, it is worse when cyclists are not using any “devices” and speed right past me or they weave in and out between pedestrians on sidewalks. Truthfully, I really do not think that cyclists should share the sidewalks with pedestrians “period.”

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