Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 32
  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Rock Hill SC
    Posts
    24
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Bells required on all bikes in SC

    In SC, you have to have a bell on the bike. Really. Below is the applicable law; after it, several questions.

    SC laws:

    "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)

    Questions:

    (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.

    Any comments?

    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.

  2. #2
    Member suzydownstairs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    28
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It's like that in Richmond too...must have a bell and brakes ale to make the wheel skid on dry pavement. Brakes are overated.

  3. #3
    Senior Member rvabiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    798
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Bah, i said that first(was signed on to gf's name)

  4. #4
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    AZ
    My Bikes
    Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
    Posts
    13,916
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Its a BS law, kind of.

    If you ride on MUPs and sidewalks a bell is essential and should just about be legally required. (A bell is in my opinion the best for peds, universally recognized as the 'bike sound' whereas voice commands often cause confusion.)

    But if you ride on the street and stay away from the curb edge and always give right of way to x-walk using peds, then a bell is not so useful, but a loud horn can be as you want to get motor vehicle attention. But the law says no siren or whistle.

    Al

  5. #5
    lws
    lws is offline
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    211
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It's a BS law until some cop doesn't like seven bicycles showing up at the same place without a parade permit and decides to start citing people for BS things, or decides you look like a pothead and wants to search your bag but needs a citation to make a traffic stop -- yes, true story. Troy, NY, sometime in the late 90s.

  6. #6
    Bent_Rider
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    SF Bay area
    My Bikes
    Bacchetta Aero, BikeE, Bruce Gordon Rock n Road
    Posts
    1,248
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I have a bell, and use it. It has saved my ass many times by getting the attention of motorists who are not paying attention and fixing to pull out in front of me. It's amazing how that little bell can be heard inside cars with the windows rolled up, but when I ring it, I can see the heads turn.

    On MUP's it's essential, unless you want to do a lot of yelling, and as another poster noted, voice warnings are confusing.

    The bell is also fun to ring at wanna-be serious roadies when I pass them on a climb on my recumbent.

  7. #7
    Immoderator KrisPistofferson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    POS Tennessee
    My Bikes
    Gary Fisher Simple City 8, Litespeed Obed
    Posts
    7,596
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by lws
    It's a BS law until some cop doesn't like seven bicycles showing up at the same place without a parade permit and decides to start citing people for BS things, or decides you look like a pothead and wants to search your bag but needs a citation to make a traffic stop
    Yep.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bikeforums
    Your rights end where another poster's feelings begin.

  8. #8
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    in bed with your mom
    My Bikes
    who cares?
    Posts
    13,696
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    A horn should qualify, as should your voice, providing you aren't mute.

  9. #9
    OlÚ OlÚ OlÚ OlÚ T-C...N-J TCNJCyclist's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    The Dark Forest of Ewing (New Jersey)
    My Bikes
    1985 Trek 620, 2005 Cannondale R700
    Posts
    464
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Bells are also "required" in NJ. I'm definitely thinking of getting one for my commuter and one for my road bike. Bikes (at least well maintained ones) are almost silent and a bells are a nice warning to pedestrians.
    1985 Trek 620 (picture pending)
    2005 Cannondale R700 (picture pending)

    Bike & Build
    NJ Bike Map

  10. #10
    Huachuca Rider webist's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Charlotte, NC
    My Bikes
    Fuji CCR1, Specialized Roubaix
    Posts
    4,274
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'll have to ask him. It seems my LBS mech had a device which sounded like an air horn from a truck.
    Just Peddlin' Around

  11. #11
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    in bed with your mom
    My Bikes
    who cares?
    Posts
    13,696
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Oregon law simply says "an audible signal must be given when passing a pedestrian" on a MUP, or some such, and sirens and whistles are prohibited.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Newark, CA. San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    6,191
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    How much seatpost is exposed on your bike? Could you possibly put one of these on your seatpost just above the seat tube clamp? If it fit, and you put it facing forward, they couldn't say you couldn't operate it. You could also put it on there facing backwards. It's small, so you shouldn't hit it while pedaling.

  13. #13
    Banned.
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana
    My Bikes
    84 Trek 660 Suntour Superbe; 87 Giant Rincon Shimano XT; 07 Mercian Vincitore Campy Veloce
    Posts
    4,766
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Bells are also required in Indiana, BUT I don't have one. Why? Because cops aren't stupid...well most of them aren't! They know just as I do that no driver in a car is going to hear a bell considering that most drivers don't even hear the sirens of an emergency vehicle, so how in the world are they ever going to hear a little ding ding from a bell? Oh, maybe not a car you say but possibly a pedistrian might hear it; it would be way faster and louder to yell at the person then to activate a bell to warn a person. It's for those reasons that most police agencies do not inforce the bell law.

  14. #14
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Beaufort, South Carolina, USA and surrounding islands.
    My Bikes
    Cannondale R500, Motobecane Messenger
    Posts
    8,524
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Case law in SC allows your voice to be an other sounding device. It's not like bells work anyway. People just stop to look at you instead of getting out of the way.

  15. #15
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    17
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Our city has a bell ordinance. The officers just laugh whenever I ask them about it.

  16. #16
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    The Cracker Factory
    Posts
    24,353
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Cops have better things to do than check bikes for bells. MMM, donuts.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  17. #17
    blithering idiot jhota's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    beautiful coastal South Carolina
    My Bikes
    1991 Trek 930, 2005 Bianchi Eros, 2006 Nashbar "X," IRO Rob Roy
    Posts
    1,263
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    meh, i've never heard of it being enforced.

  18. #18
    chicharron
    Guest
    I don't need a bell when I'm riding, I just pass gas.

  19. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Montreal
    My Bikes
    Peugeot Hybrid, Minelli Hybrid
    Posts
    6,521
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Bells are inoffensive warning devices to wake up pedestrians on MUPs. If you have barends they can be mounted there. If you have drop bars, you can mount one on the end of the drop and operate with your pinkie. A whistle is the best warning device for cars.

  20. #20
    Se˝ior Member ItsJustMe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    My Bikes
    Windsor Fens, Giant Seek 0 (2014, Alfine 8 + discs)
    Posts
    11,571
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Bells are required in Michigan. I have one but took it off after a year or so. I never ride in a situation where I can imagine it doing any good. I'm always either in traffic that's going 20+MPH faster than me, or stopped at a light.

  21. #21
    imminent danger
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    739
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Theoretically bells are required on bikes in the UK. I've never seen it enforced but suspect that it may become an additional measure used by the police at the upcoming newly criminalised Critical Mass.

  22. #22
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    467
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    My Trek came with a bell It's a sweet looking little thing and the tone is pleasing. LOL But if it hadn't come installed, I can't say as I fork out the coin to get one. Not when there's a need for gloves (it was COLD this am), etc.

  23. #23
    hill hater nova's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    norton ohio 5.5 miles from center road tow path trail head
    My Bikes
    cannondale t400 1987 model and a raleigh gran prix from 1973
    Posts
    2,125
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Fog horn in a can better than any bell ....

    I use to carry one when there was a few stray dogs that would give chas in a dangerous manner. Had one try to bite me gave him a blast right in the face he turned tail and ran realy fast.

  24. #24
    Banned.
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    616
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Bells are required here, too. No one knew this but me. Even the LBS had no idea.

    I have one on my utility bike just so John Law can't cite me (and make me walk) for not having one.

  25. #25
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Portland, Maine USA
    My Bikes
    Trek 850 Antelope
    Posts
    758
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I don't know if bells are required on bicycles here in Maine.

    My bicycle isn't equipped with one.

    Instead, I have a hand-held air horn which I have strapped to the handlebars with strong elastic bands. It is much better than a bell in that the sound it emits is much louder and has worked in alerting everyday motorists, truckers, and even scares dogs away. Although it needs replacing every now and then, it's well worth the price. I keep a spare one in my panier.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •