Oklahoma Lawmaker Champions Bill To Make Cyclists More Visible In Traffic

Sunday, February 1st 2015, 10:52 pm
By: News On 6

One Oklahoma lawmaker wants to make bicyclists on state highways more visible.

Representative John Enns (R-Enid) is behind a new bill that requires cyclists to wear reflective clothing whenever they hit the road.

Cyclists we talked to said already go out of their way to make sure they can be seen by cars, and it's already the law to make sure bikes can be seen at night.

James Webb and his friends braved the cold and windy weather for an afternoon out on the trails of Turkey Mountain.

Enns wants to make sure riders like Webb can be seen when they're riding along with traffic.

His proposed law says a bicyclist should wear at least one item of reflective outerwear apparel on state highways.

Webb said he hopes cyclists are already going out of their way to stay visible.

"Hopefully it's more common sense that they're wearing something that's making them more noticeable on the road instead of being kind of stealthed out in black,” Webb said.

His cycling team already uses bright neon as their jersey color.

“I really don't see a reason to have a law to push that, hopefully people are just doing it to be smart about riding out on the streets," he said.

At Tom's Bicycles, there's plenty of reflective items to choose from.

Owner Tom Brown said the proposed law is a step backwards.

"It's pretty vague," he said.

“My initial thoughts are there is no need for reflective wear, we're already required to have a rear reflector and a front light and that's plenty."

Webb hopes cyclists are doing whatever they can to prevent accidents with cars on the road.

“It's our job to keep safe... making sure we catch someone's eye in their car should be part of the job too just to be safe," Webb said.

The bill will be read in the Oklahoma House for the second time on Monday.

The bill still requires passage in the state House and Senate before going to the governor for her signature.