Seeing what they considered a growing danger to traffic safety, Berlin police announced this spring they would begin cracking down on fixie riders. Since only April, they’ve confiscated 18 bicycles.
“Fixies have become a real problem,” Rainer Paetsch, a Berlin police official for traffic issues, told The Local. “It wasn’t a hunt, but we decided to do something to undercut this trend.”
To get their bikes back, cyclists have to pay a fine and convince the authorities they won’t ride them on the street anymore – or at least show an inclination to install brakes on them.
“For all I care they can ride them in their backyards,” Paetsch joked. “We just want people to realise it’s too risky to ride them around the city. Then we’ll be content that we’ve helped improve traffic safety.”