Safety regulations must be taken into consideration
Before we all get euphoric about 450,000 riders commuting merrily on their 500 bicycles, abandoning the alternatives of cars and buses, Puget Sound Bike Share executives first have to assure us of this program’s safety element [“Puget Sound Bike Share to roll out with 500 bicycles,” NWTuesday, April 23].While the program was uber innovative with helmet dispensers for safety, nowhere was it mentioned that riders will be liable if they violate the rules of the road.
Steve Durrant and Holly Houser, the key players in this program, must recognize the need to display license plates (front and back) so bikers can be identified. It should be a prerequisite to carry adequate coverage in cases where either bikers or others incur property damage or injuries due to the their violation of traffic laws.
In brief, it’s already a sad fact that many bikers do not obey traffic stoplights. It has long been a concern that due to the absence of a state bike-license requirement, no injured party has a case to claim compensation from a bike rider if he or she flees the scene.
So, Puget Sound Bike Share, we urge you to legislate a license requirement for bicycles before dropping 500 more wheels on to Seattle streets.
Dee Tezelli, Seattle