In Paris, where it witnessed a surge in cyclists, has dedicated 440 km of cycle paths and routes. These include piste cyclable (bike lanes separated from other traffic by physical barriers such as a kerb) and bande cyclable (a bicycle lane denoted by a painted path on the road). 


The increased incidence of injuries involving cyclists had prompted the Operation Compass that ran for three months beginning June 2011.


The Operation Compass involved police patrol officers issuing fines to cyclists who were not observing road safety.


Bike-related laws to be enforced include failing to wear a helmet, not having lights, failing to obey a traffic light and riding in a tram safety zone.


Despite bicycle helmet laws being enforced since July 1990 in Victoria, Senior Sergeant Huntington said officers were finding some cyclists flouting them.


Australia is the first country to implement a nation-wide compulsory helmet law for all cyclists. Other countries such as Dubai and Finland have followed suit.


In the world’s third most fashionable city, Paris, cyclists are not required but are strongly advised to wear the helmet and a fluorescent jacket that will help to increase their visibility.


A young man chaining his bicycle to a lamppost on the Rue de Rivoli in Paris, who declines to be named, said: "I've spent ages gelling my hair. I'm not going to ruin all that work, thanks very much."

Hugh McIntyre, 30, who has been commuting on a bicycle since he moved to Melbourne when he was 20 beg to differ.


“Many times I fallen on the ground and hit my head. If not for the helmet, I would have taken my skull off. I’ve no argument against wearing a helmet but some people will choose not to wear them for fear of messing up their hair or looking like a nerd.


“But if you get caught not wearing the helmet, the fine is about $150. You can probably get a new helmet with that amount,” Mr McIntyre said.


Mr McIntyre, a system administrator at Tennis Australia, does not own a car and travels everywhere on a bicycle. His incentive for cycling is to get to places.


“I hate getting on the trams. The peak hour is just horrible,” he said.


He also co-owns cycle company and cafe, The Little Mule, on Somerset Pl, Melbourne where he custom-builds bicycles from scratch since September 2010.


Mr McIntyre was originally interested only in selling bicycles but his business partner, Matt Bates, suggested a bicycle shop with a on-site cafe.


“If we sold five bicycles per month, there would be no problem. But selling only two bicycles per month, we need the earnings from the cafe to cover the expenses,” Mr McIntyre said.

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