Faithful readers know about my love for fixed-gear cycling — these are super-simple bikes that have no gears and don’t coast. When the wheel turns the pedals turn. sort of like a big Big Wheel. Well, Uncle Fester was kind enough to send in this link to a recent court decision that fixies must have brakes. I do have a front brake, but the real hardcore riders like urban messengers, use their leg muscles to slow down or lock up their rear wheels into a controlled skid. Now the judge is saying a brake is a brake and locking the rear wheel does not a brake make. This will spawn some serious protests among the fixie crowd who are among the most militant in the burgeoning urban bike kulture.
“Yesterday at the Multnomah County Courthouse the law came down against fixed gear bicycles.On June 1, 2006 Portland bike messenger Ayla Holland was given a ticket for allegedly violating Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 815.280(2)(a) which states,
A bicycle must be equipped with a brake that enables the operator to make the braked wheels skid on dry, level, clean pavement. strong enough to skid tire.”