What better way to get a driver’s attention than to go all FIFA on them? Toronto’s Martin Reis, an independent photojournalist and cycling advocate, heads to spots where cars obstruct bike lanes or create dangerous situations for cyclists or pedestrians. Reis, dressed as a referee and armed with a whistle, hands out yellow cards to offending motorists in various spots of the city.
When a cyclist is forced into traffic, it can be very dangerous, especially during rush hour. A rider must veer out of the protected bike area and take a risky course to get around cars. However, a vehicle actually going into a lane is very dangerous. Riders coming up from behind may not see them in time, and the results could be deadly. The same goes for pedestrians trying to cross busy intersections.
Sure, not all drivers are intentionally trying to hurt cyclists or pedestrians, they just may have no clue about the extent of the risk they are putting people in by driving into the protected bike lane or not checking their blind spots. That being said, ignorance is no excuse. (Though there are some extremely angry and aggressive motorists out there, as noted on the pages of Canadian Cycling Magazine.)
The hero Toronto deserves pic.twitter.com/YCQRyh50FF
— Ben Wedge (@benwedge) August 17, 2023
Reis’s move here is a great way to create awareness for motorists who could be creating a very dangerous situation for people commuting home from work or errands.
On his Instagram, he posted about it. “The Federation of International Fun Artists (FIFA), presents ‘Crosswalk Referee’ during the 2023 Women’s Football World Cup. ‘Crosswalk Referee’ is a performance art work based in interventionist practise which uses the universal languages of football and humour to address pedestrian safety, privilege and social interaction in dense urban settings.”
Check out this absolute legend below.