Ohio AAA clubs gauging interest in emergency roadside assistance program for bicyclists

Ohio chapters of auto club AAA are gauging interest in providing emergency roadside assistance for bicyclists in the state, an Ohio spokeswoman said.

The AAA clubs covering central and southwest Ohio are sponsoring a survey asking bike riders to give feedback on their needs and suggestions. The surveys are just preliminary research, but the AAA groups are considering the concept of a bike assistance program, Ohio AAA spokeswoman Kimberly Schwind told The Plain Dealer in Cleveland (http://bit.ly/1toywCE ). The surveys will ask Ohioans what type of bike service they would be interested in, from a simple transport service in the event of a breakdown to tire inflations and chain repairs.

AAA already offers bike assistance in other states, including the Minneapolis area and parts of New England. Clubs currently offering the service help cyclists with small repairs, or may transport a bike and its rider in the case of a more serious problem.

The number of bicycling commuters has jumped 62 percent since 2000, but the increase has meant more fatalities. A recent report by the Governors Highway Safety Association showed yearly bicyclist deaths increased 16 percent between 2010 and 2012, and nearly 70 percent of those deaths occurred in urban areas. In that same period, motor vehicle deaths rose just 1 percent.


Information from: The Plain Dealer, http://www.cleveland.com