Bicyclist captures motorist in bike lane on Pulaski Bridge in Brooklyn

Josh Einiger Image
Saturday, June 11, 2016
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Josh Einiger has the story.

GREENPOINT, Brooklyn (WABC) -- It's not something you see every day: a car driving in the bike line on a bridge in New York City.

It was a perfectly normal start to the day for Steven Stone, as he grabbed a Citi Bike near his Greenpoint apartment and pedaled onto the spanking new, protected, supposedly safe bike lane over the Pulaski Bridge.

But then, something strange happened.

"I knew something wasn't right," Stone said.

He recorded video as a Volkswagen just drove on by, even tailgating another bike rider.

The driver was wearing what looked like a nervous grin.

"It's kind of ridiculous. It's plainly a bike lane and he obviously wanted to skirt the rules because he was running late or something," Stone said.

The protected lane has been open for just a few weeks. It used to be that bikes and pedestrians shared the bridge sidewalk.

The city separated the two to give cyclists their own lane on the roadway.

When you look at the bridge onramp, it's actually not that difficult to imagine how it all happened.

You have to first envision that two construction cones were not on the pavement, because they weren't on Friday morning.

Then consider that this is a brand new traffic pattern.

Now imagine a driver used to the old pattern, who might actually be a little distracted, and it's not out of the realm of possibility that that guy might think this lane was meant for him.

"You're bound to have some morons," one bicyclist said.

Cyclists were less than forgiving.

"In a city where too many people park their cars in bike lanes," wrote the head of the advocacy group Transportation Alternatives, "Why should we be surprised some people think it's ok to drive in bike lanes?"

"It's like saying there's an onramp for the highway and I accidentally got on it with my bicycle. It's possible, absolutely sometimes a little common sense guys," a bicyclist said.

For now, the dot has cones in place. The department says it's reviewing the video.

The Pulaski Bridge carries thousands of cyclists between Queens and Brooklyn across Newtown Creek each day, according to the DOT.