Bike Activists Want to Yield at Stop Signs in San Francisco

A San Francisco-based bicycle advocacy group known as the Wigg Party is trying to have San Francisco adopt a similar law to one in Idaho which allows cyclists to treat stop signs like a yield sign.

The Wigg Party, who refer to themselves as the “urban sustainability guerrillas,” reportedly staged a “wiggle stop-in” last Wednesday where dozens of cyclists blocked traffic during the evening commute home from work to protest the San Francisco Police Department’s enforcement of a law requiring cyclists to come to a full stop at stop signs.

The protest took place at the popular mile-long, zig-zagging bike route from Market Street to the Golden Gate Park, known as the Wiggle, which is where the group’s name appears to stem from.

Morgan Fitzgibbons, program director for the Wigg Party, participated in a roundtable discussion with Bay Area public radio station KQED on Friday, arguing that it is “absurd” to force cyclists to come to a full stop, suggesting it is unnecessary for their safety.

“A bicycle is a different beast than a 3,000 pound car,” Fitzgibbons said. “It can stop much more easily, it’s much more maneuverable, and is much less dangerous if a collision actually occur[s].” He said that somewhere around 95% of San Francisco’s cyclists are already treating the stop sign as a yield signs “and it’s perfectly safe.”

On the opposing side was Denny Klein, resident of the Lower Haight who lives near the Wiggle, who told KQED host Mina Kim that he and residents of the Wiggle have witnessed the problems associated with these cyclists yielding instead of stopping at stop signs for years.

The entire interview can be heard here.

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