Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Little bit of activism: Cycling safety

If you live and ride a bike in Massachusetts please consider emailing your senator and representative to ask them to support a pending public safety law that would mandate that police officers know more about bike safety, specifically the rules of the road in regards to cyclists. It would also impart fines on drivers who injure cyclists by pushing them off the road or opening car doors into them. [Please, please get into the habit of looking back before you open your door when you're parked on a street--any time of the year.]
Mitt Romney vetoed a similar bill last year (of course!). Check out the Action Alert issued by MassBike which is asking concerned folks to help get the new bill out of committee.
And check out their website if you want to know how to be safe on a bicycle and if you want to know how to be a safe and conscientious driver when you're around cyclists.
Of course being safe--as a driver and cyclist--does not eliminate the harassment cyclists face from drivers, which was my motivation for doing something. A woman, who the police have identified but refuse to release much information on, in my area of the state has been harassing cyclists since the beginning of the summer--including putting anti-cyclist signs in the windows of her pick-up truck. So lovely.
Local cyclists are pissed. They want the woman's name and they want her to be punished. So far nothing has happened.


Diane said...

There is a very good public service campaign in New Orleans about this now; cyclists are injured in New Orleans at an alarming rate. The PSAs take drivers to task for their behaviors, and also take cyclists to task for their contributions to the accidents.

ken said...

Good to know this is happening elsewhere. I haven't seen a PSA yet but I think it would be a good idea for MA--especially in conjunction with the legislation.