Our Illinois accident attorneys were happy to read an article in the Washington Times that discussed a recent bill introduced by a Chicago alderman to ban cell phone use by bicyclists. The bill that would extend hands-free distracted-driving laws to everyone on the road, which would include bicyclists.
The article reported that a high number of cyclists talk and text while they are riding around, even in heavy downtown traffic. Making this distraction illegal could make streets safer for all motorists and cyclists. As we have noted before, Chicago is becoming a very bike-friendly city. Just recently, plans were announced to expand the City’s bike-share program. Mayor Rahm Emanuel also plans to implement over 100 miles of protected bike lanes. Proponents of the new regulations say an anti cell phone law for cyclists could contribute to safer bike lanes. All drivers, no matter what type of vehicle they are operating, should be focusing on the road and their surroundings, not on social media, texting, talking on cellular telephones, or other distractions.
Our attorneys agree that this Chicago bill would further protect the safety of bicyclists, pedestrians, and motorists. We also encourage bicyclists to be familiar with the rules and laws for bike operators in their own communities. Chicago Bike Laws is a site where our bicyclist readers can go to look up the City of Chicago’s bike laws. Also, the Illinois Bicycle Rules of the Road is a pamphlet that states general rules and regulations for bicyclists across the state. Some general bicycle safety tips include:
• Riding in single file • Ride one to a bike • Avoid riding in the dark • Check the bike equipment often • Stay closest to the right side of the road • Have both hands on the handlebars at all times
Our Chicago accident attorneys encourage bicyclists to put down their cell phones even before this bill is official. When riding your bike in the city, you should wear helmets at all times, and avoid all possible distractions. Unfortunately, when accident occurs between bikes and larger vehicles, it is often the bicyclist who faces the most severe injuries. Following these bicycle safety tips will not only help keep cyclists safe, but will also protect the safety of other people on the road. If you have any question regarding a Chicago bike accident, please contact our lawyers to discuss your possible claim.