Bicycle Registration & Safety
The Police Department encourages registration of bicycles for the following reasons:
- Many bike riders carry no identification when riding a bike. Police have found lost children and unconscious persons who have fallen from a bike and were able to identify them through a bike license.
- If a bike has a license, it will not be included with the bicycles that are sold at a Western Springs auction. Many bicycles are recovered by the police and then auctioned after six months when the owners are not located.
- Registered bikes have a serial number that can be put into a nationwide police computer.
- Registered bikes enable police personnel to contact the owner.
All bicyclists must adhere to all traffic regulations outlined for regular automobile / truck traffic. Failure to do so may result in the issuing of a regular traffic citation.
The riding of a bicycle becomes a habit and from time to time, bicyclists lose sight of the dangers involved in such an innocent pastime. Each year, your Police Department is called to investigate accidents involving bicycles. In nearly all cases, an injury was sustained by the bicycle rider; in some cases the injuries were very severe.
With this in mind, the department offers the following safety guidelines:
- Do not carry passengers on a bicycle unless it has been designed for that purpose.
- Make sure your field of vision is clear. Do not ride with packages or other personal belongings blocking your view.
- Use hand signals when you are about to make a turn. Other drivers appreciate this little effort.
- If you are carefully riding on a sidewalk, keep in mind that pedestrians have the right of way at all times. It should be emphasized that the riding of bicycles in our Business District is prohibited.
- When parking your bicycle on the sidewalk, especially in the Business District, do so in such a manner as not to block passage of pedestrians who may be shopping.
- Bicycles must obey traffic signals. Many times, bicyclists are seen crossing an intersection against a red light. This also holds true for stop signs. Obey them - they are there for your safety as well as others.
- Lock your bicycle when not in use or when it is parked.
- Wear a bicycle helmet. This is perhaps the single most important safety item that can be used.
- Make sure your bicycle is equipped with lights and reflectors.