Yesterday at Campbell Street Bicycle Shop in the Chicago suburb of Arlington Heights, Illinois, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed Illinois bicycle safety legislation into law designed to better protect bicyclists in the state. League of Illinois Bicyclists executive director says that the bills will help both motorists and bicyclists do their parts in sharing our roadways safely. According to the group, the bill will establish new penalties for motorists that drive recklessly or unnecessarily close to bicyclists. A second piece of Illinois legislation will create “Share the Road” Illinois license plates, the money from which will fund bicycle safety campaigns. Illinois Governor Quinn states that the new laws will keep bicyclists safe and remind drivers to be alert for bicyclists.
The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) addressed bicycle safety in a website entitled “safe riding tips.” The safe riding tips address ways to avoid bicycle injuries. Before using a bike, one should always make sure that it is ready to ride. The NHTSA says to remember to wear a properly fitted bicycle helmet, adjust the bicycle to fit, check equipment, see and be seen, control the bicycle, watch for and avoid road hazards, and avoid riding at night. Another issue, especially important to Chicago bicycle riders, is to always follow the rules of the road. Bicycles are considered vehicles. With the rights of a bicycle ride, bicyclists have the same responsibilities to follow the rules of the road as motorists. Illinois bicyclists are expected to go with the traffic flow, obey traffic laws, yield to traffic when appropriate, be predictable, stay alert at all times, look before turning, and watch for parked cars.
Click the link to read about the bicycle safety law.