Chicago, home of the deep dish pizza and bad cyclists. Why do I say this? Apparently the legislature is throwing around a law that would prevent bicyclists from effectively texting while moving. As Ald. Margaret Laurino, 39th, chairman of the committee and sponsor of the measure puts it, “Like drivers, bicyclists will not be able to text while moving. Nor will bicyclists be able to use their cell phones unless they utilize a hands-free device.”
Ken brought up an interesting point when we were discussing this. If this law was for bicyclists “like drivers” why did it not apply to bikes as well. Admittedly I am not up on the bicycling laws of Chicago but if they are anything like New York’s bicyclists would have to follow all of the rules of motorists. So the law in New York about texting while driving would also affect bicycles. This law could present a nice opportunity to append the laws for measures that are particular to bicycles.
Also the wording about this confuses me a little. The phrase “while moving” could raise a few questions. Does that mean that that bicyclist and drivers alike can stop at a light or a stop sign and pull out their phone to start texting?
Whether or not to follow car laws or making special considerations for bicyclists is an issue of great debate in the bicycling community. Here at ABC we follow the rules of the road as long as it is safe to do so, or at least that is our official stance. *wink