Free bike light campaign aims to make Ottawa roads safer
Cyclist says he's given away more than a thousand lights he bought himself
An Ottawa cyclist has turned himself into a part-time bike light dispenser as a way to make city roads safer.
He said he started his "Bike Brite" campaign after seeing many cyclists without proper, legal equipment.
"As cyclists it's our responsibility to share the road with cars and pedestrians," he said. "It's very important to be predictable and an essential quality of that is to be visible at night."
Dessaint-Ash said most people without a light know they need one and are happy to get one for free.
'I pay for them myself'
"I pay for them myself. They cost about about the same as a coffee and it's very much worth it," he said. "It feels good to stand behind something you believe in and this is something I felt I could really make an impact with."
Ottawa police say people biking without the proper lights and reflectors could be fined as much as $110.
"The law for the Highway Traffic Act (is) the bicycle has to have, at night time, a white light at the front of the bike and it has to have a red light reflector at the rear," said Const. Chuck Benoit, a spokesman for Ottawa police.
Dessaint-Ash said he’s given away more than 1,000 bike lights since last summer, and he plans to keep going as long as he feels it's needed.