Philadelphia celebrates Bike to Work Day

    Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and the Greater Philadelphia Bicycle Coalition are encouraging commuters to take bicycles to work.

    Today is Bike to Work Day in cities across the country. Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and the Greater Philadelphia Bicycle Coalition are encouraging commuters to take bicycles to work.

    The Philadelphia Police Department and the Bicycle Coalition have teamed up and will use both the stick and the carrot to encourage safe bike-riding.

    In November, some police officers worked overtime on a blitz campaign to ticket people who ride bikes on the sidewalk or while wearing headphones. Those tickets can cost riders $300.

    The Bicycle Coalition has smiling bike Ambassadors who hand out literature.

    Captain Dennis Wilson of the Police Department says officers continue to write bicycle tickets.

    “It isn’t a tremendous amount,” says Wilson. “The idea is to get everyone to comply. We aren’t in the business of writing a bunch of tickets to bicyclists. We are promoting safety.”

    The Greater Philadelphia Bicycle Coalition is working with the city to establish a Bicycle Safety Task Force, which could influence changes in city traffic laws. For now, on Bike to Work Day, the Coalition’s safety ambassadors will be out in force, with smiles and advice.

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