In SC, you have to have a bell on the bike. Really. Below is the applicable law; after it, several questions.
"Section 56-5-3480. Bell or like device on bicycle. No person shall operate a bicycle unless it is equipped with a bell or other device capable of giving a signal audible for a distance of at least one hundred feet, except that a bicycle shall not be equipped with nor shall any person use upon a bicycle any siren or whistle, except as provided in Section 56-5-3515."
("An authorized police patrol bicycle may be equipped with a siren or the officer may utilize a whistle in the performance of his duties, or both." from Section 56-5-3515)
(1) Has anyone ever encountered the bell part of the law being enforced?
(2) Is this found in any other state, and if so, is it enforced?
(3) Does "equipped with" mean that it has to be attached to the bike? Or can I put it in my bike bag---which is what I did shortly after finding out about the law (I got the bell off an old tricycle of my kids', a trike that is inoperable)?
If I get in an accident, it is obviously best to have a totally legal bike, which I have, except for the issue of bells, assuming the bell must be physically mounted. So I guess I'm going to have to figure out how to mount a bell. I have a hybrid---a KHS Flite 200---equipped with front light and computer on the handlebars, so there really isn't much space to mount a bell on the bars. Maybe I'll put it somewhere else.
I'm a new commuter cyclist, doing 3.3 mi to and also from work and want to be as safe as possible and legal too.