The folks at the Washington (DC) Area Bicyclist Association (WABA) have adopted the following resolution as they make 2011 the “Year of the Bicycle.” They want “every bicyclist in DC, Maryland and Virginia to take part.”
And they have a point: as they advocate for the rights of cyclists on the road they are hard put to do so when many bicyclists believe that they don’t have to follow the rules of the road.
When I teach bike safety to kids in local schools, we talk about rules. Even the kindergartners understand the concept of rules of the road. And when I point out that it would be pretty tough to have a football or basketball game where one team is required to follow the rules and the other is allowed to make up their own rules, that the game wouldn’t be fair at all.
So think about this as you run that next red light or as you come off the sidewalk and across the crosswalk at breakneck speed past those pedestrians (“walkers” as the kindergartners call them).
Then think about adopting WABA’s 2011 resolution. It’s pretty simple:
…I resolve to be a more responsible bicyclist.
…I resolve to better respect the rights of other road users.
…I resolve to make a good faith effort to better follow the law.
…I resolve to yield to pedestrians.
…I resolve to help make bicycling safer and easier for all of us.”
Check out WABA here.