|Â Distribution promotes safer cycling after daylight-saving time changeÂ Â Hundreds of unsuspecting cyclists were surprised with free bike lights on their evening commute Tuesday night. A group of volunteers from the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce and staff from the Active Transportation Alliance were stationed near Lincoln Ave. and Southport Ave. to pass out white headlights and rear red reflectors to cyclists who ride past without proper lights. The City of Chicago requires cyclists by law to have a front white light and red reflector.
Active Trans will be giving away 750 lights at this and couple more distribution events within the next few weeks. Lights were donated by the offices of Attorney Jim Freeman and Get Lit, a project of Grid Chicago.
More than 20 percent of all reported bike crashes in Illinois took place after dark last year. Lights are essential to staying visible and safe on a bicycle after dark. Bike crashes are more likely to occur with reduced visibility, and failure to use a light may also hinder legal action following a crash, even if the driver is otherwise at fault.
Headlight giveaways are not announced to the public in advance in order to ensure that the free lights make it onto the bikes of cyclists most in need â€“ those riding without lights at night. The event will continue until supplies run out.
Ethan Spotts, 312-427-3325 ext. 287
The Active Transportation Alliance is a non-profit, member-based advocacy organization that works to make bicycling, walking and public transit so safe, convenient and fun that we will achieve a significant shift from environmentally harmful, sedentary travel to clean, active travel. The organization builds a movement around active transportation, encourages physical activity, increases safety and builds a world-class transportation network. Formerly the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation, the Active Transportation Alliance is North Americaâ€™s largest transportation advocacy organization, supported by more than 5,000 members, 1,000 volunteers and 35 full-time staff. For more information on the Active Transportation Alliance, visit www.activetrans.org or call 312-427-3325.