(Chicago, IL) – November 7, 2011. State Rep. Kelly Cassidy (D-Chicago) has introduced legislation to ban the use of handheld electronic devices–mobile phones, computers, iPads, etc–by bicyclists.
“Much like motorist, bicyclist are subject to distracted driving and therefore should adhere to the same safety precautions that drivers of motor vehicles now take,” Cassidy said.
The legislation, House Bill 3849, would prohibit anyone from typing, reading or sending messages while riding a bicycle. A hands-free device or a voice-activated feature would be exempted.
Highlighting that more than 1,600 accidents involving cyclists occurred in the last year alone, Cassidy noted that the City of Chicago recently passed an ordinance that bans biking-texting, imposing a fine on these ambidextrous bikers.
Under Cassidy’s legislation, bicyclists would be subject to the same penalties as motorists who send text messages while driving.
“Not only in the city of Chicago but across the state, thousands of cyclists travel alongside motor vehicles every day,” said Ron Burke, Executive Director of the Active Transportation Alliance.
“Extending this law to include bicycles will allow for safer travel through our communities and help prevent dangerous situations from occurring.”
Bladers, skate boarders, and buggy pushers–take note.
The legislation is currently idling in the House Rules Committee.