Bicycle coalition opposes legislation

By Bryan M. Gold – Citizen Staff Writer : .egcitizen – excerpt

A statewide bicycle coalition opposes a State Senate bill that would require adults to wear helmets while on a bicycle ride.

State Senator Carol Liu (D-La Cañada Flintridge) authored SB 192 that she introduced last month. The legislation would require adult bicyclists to wear helmets and require all riders to wear reflective clothing when riding at night.

“Any responsible bicycle rider should wear a helmet,” Liu said in a press release. “This law will help protect more people and make sure all riders benefit from the head protection that a helmet provides.”

Liu cited California Highway Patrol statistics noting that nearly 14,000 bicyclists were hurt in crashes in 2012, up from 11,760 in 2008. She added that the National Conference of State Legislatures claimed 91 percent of bicyclists killed in 2009 reportedly were not wearing helmets.

Anyone riding without a helmet could be cited for an infraction and fined up to $25, the same as current law for youth cyclists. California since 1994 has mandated that anyone under age 18 wear a helmet when riding a bike.

Ryan Price, campaigns director for the California Bicycle Coalition, wrote in an email to people in the organization’s database that the legislation would deter adults from cycling.

“This mandate sends the wrong message about bicycling and will produce the wrong result,” he wrote. “It will discourage bicycling, making our streets less safe and Californians less healthy.”… (HOW?)

Liu’s bill was referred to the Senate Transportation and Housing Committee for consideration… (more)

See links to details on the law below. See links to members of the Transportation and Housing Committee and other state representatives here.

SB 192 – Senator Carol Liu, Bicycle Helmet and Reflectors – Extend the helmet requirement to adults and also require all riders to wear reflective clothing when cycling at night. Contact Robert Oakes: 916-651-4025 – Sent to Transportation and Housing Committee