Saturday, March 29, 2008

Do cell phones make drivers more considerate?

I have not come across any scientific evidence to back this up, but from my own personal experience, it seems something has changed driver behavior.

Years ago on country roads or even busy streets, some motorists acted like they could get away with all kinds of nasty behavior towards cyclists. As of late, for some reason, I have had a lot fewer incidents with motor vehicles. Gee, no one has tried to run me off the road in a couple of years!

I am not sure what to attribute this change in behavior. Maybe it’s just luck. I have actually increased my riding mileage, but I have not changed my riding style and my routes are the same. Even though more cars are on those routes, it seems I have had less trouble. One thing that is different is the fact that I carry a cell phone with me and so does nearly everyone else. Since cell phones are ubiquitous these days, I think most people/drivers assume that everyone has one. Even bicyclists. And that means the police are just a phone call away. Does this make people more accountable for their actions?

I take my cell phone on every ride. Not that I have ever needed to call anybody for help. I have been riding for 20+ years and have been able to fix every flat, broken crank arm, and bent spoke, etc. Or at least fix it well enough to limp home. ;)

But, you never know when you might fall, break something, or have an accident with another vehicle. The phone provides just a little added security, which is the primary reason that I have a cell phone. And just maybe it also makes drivers a little more responsible.

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