Back in February, we reported about our ongoing work to improve bike safety for seasonal workers who flock to Cape Cod every summer. Bicycling is often the most convenient, or only mode of transportation available for these workers who come from around the world on J-1 visas to work in area restaurants and resorts.
MassBike has been working with a coalition of partners including the Barnstable County Commissioners office, Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority, and various local police departments across Cape Cod, and we are pleased to announce the launch of the Regional Bike Safety Education and Awareness Campaign.
Plans call for a busy season of outreach and activities to ensure that seasonal workers, and all people who ride a bike on Cape Cod, have the knowledge and equipment to travel safely and enjoyably by bicycle.
Visibility while riding after dark has been an ongoing concern, so making sure people who rides bikes have lights is a top priority. MassBike made the connection between light vendor Planet Bike and coalition partners, who secured a discounted purchase of approximately 2,000 lights. These lights will be distributed at various outreach events. In addition, police officers will have a supply of lights in their cruisers, and will be instructed to distribute them to people they identify who are riding at night without lights.
To address a recognized language barrier, we added a new language to our series of Go By Bike safety pamphlets. Go By Bike is now available in Bulgarian, in addition to existing versions of the pamphlet in 9 different languages. Go By Bike will be distributed at orientation events for seasonal workers and at various other events throughout the season. Go By Bike covers the basics on riding a bicycle, including equipment, how to ride in mixed traffic, and using lights at night.
We presented our recently released video “Shifting Gears” to the chiefs of all 15 police districts on Cape Cod. With this training, our hope is that more police officers will be able to recognize and ticket drivers for unsafe and illegal behavior around bicyclists.
In addition, MassBike will have a presence at a number of social events, including orientations and beach parties put on for seasonal workers. We will directly engage attendees, distribute information, fit helmets, and distribute lights.
We will report on further updates on planning and program rollout as they emerge.
Read more about the Regional Bike Safety Education and Awareness Campaign in this article on Cape Cod Today.