by: Constance Sheriff date: November 28, 2010
Letter to the Editor, Lethbridge Herald
As an avid cyclist who regularly commutes to work, I have had some unpleasant interactions with motorists recently. Lethbridge is not an especially safe city for cyclists, but motorists and cyclists are often both to blame. For example, some motorists do not accept that I am entitled to cycle on the road,
By Stu Walker
For BCA BikeShorts
Are you a
member of the Alberta Motor Association (AMA)?
Here is some good news, sort of. If you are traveling by bicycle in BC or South Central Ontario and bend a rim or shatter a derailleur you are likely eligible for “Bike Assist”. Both BCAA and CAASCO have recently announced that they provide road side assistance to their members while cycling. And, according to Vicki Sherwin, Director of AMA Member Services, if you are an AMA member you can make use of these services while riding in those provinces.
This is an important step by both BCAA and CAASCO. It means they have come to realize that the bicycle is a means of transportation, that even though their members own and drive automobiles, many also use a bicycle for at least some of their personal mobility needs. BCAA and CAASCO seem to have taken the view that the future is not the past. They have tuned in to a growing desire and need for alternatives to using a motor vehicle for each and every trip.
Will “Bike Assist” be available here in Alberta anytime soon? Hard to say, but according to Vicki Sherwin, “AMA is truly open to the idea of “bike assist” as our goal is to satisfy our member’s personal mobility needs. In addition, a move in this direction would support and align with our advocacy efforts around the environment and continued sustainability through “green” initiatives“.
How open the AMA is to implementing “Bike Assist” remains to be seen. In a world of rapidly rising personal transportation uncertainty, many organizations, businesses and even cities still seem slow or even blind to the idea that they may have a role to play in mitigating that uncertainty. In the context of post peak oil and rising fuel costs; global pressures that will almost certainly assign at least some carbon costs to motorists; and pressures on insurers to manage increasing catastrophic weather loses; many of us will soon be seeking support for alternate ways to get around, like the bicycle.
For more information:
BCAA Bike Assist
CAA SC Ontario Bike Assist
Bike Assistance Oregon/Idaho
Betterworldclub Bike Assistance