Thursday, September 13, 2012

Licensing of Cyclists

Hi all...

Apparently, there was an article in today's Star.  The article reports  that a growing number of people around the city believe that cyclists should be licensed.  People think that such licensing will make the average cyclist more responsive to the law of the road.  I agree and disagree over licensing.

Where do I disagree?  The extant laws of the road include bicycles.  Enforce them.  The reason people pay any attention to the laws of the road is that there is a reasonable possibility of being caught.  Increase that possibility.  People will respond.

While there is thought that to increase infrastructure requires money, who better to pay it than those who will benefit the most?  I agree wholeheartedly.  I will happily have my taxes go to that infrastructure, provided that I no longer have to pay for city roads with my taxes.  I do not really drive.  Beyond that, bicycle lanes do not suffer from the slings and arrows of outrageous numbers of vehicles the way a road does.

Where do I agree?  When we lived in Honolulu, there was a law on the books requiring all to register their bicycles.  There is a sticker from the City on Honolulu on Jesse's bicycle even as we speak.  That allows the city to keep track of how many bicycles are actually on the road, and to build the infrastructure to accommodate them.  As well, if the bicycle is ever stolen, there is already a description of the bicycle with the police.  This was a one-time registration.

One of the hot issues downtown has been the couriers.  They ride downtown like bats out of hell.  Here, a different set of laws should be in order.  That set of laws requires all couriers to wear clothing identifying the company for which they work.  It requires them to produce proof that their bicycles have had service within the last year.  It holds their employers accountable for their actions.

That would go a long way.  I am a licensed driver.  I do not need anything more than that.

Ride carefully folks, and remember to wear a helmet.


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