Bicyclists can be miles from home when a skinny tire goes flat or the gear chain breaks — which can mean a long walk back, if they’re not mechanically inclined.
Starting Tuesday, if they’re members of the American Automobile Association, they’ll be able to summon help — or at least a ride home — with a phone call.
The AAA Northway chapter in Schenectady and AAA Hudson Valley in Albany announced Friday that roadside assistance for bicyclists will be offered at no additional charge to members — a response to a burgeoning interest in cycling for fun and fitness, and requests from members for the service.
“When you’re 5, 10 or 15 miles from home and you don’t know how you’ll get home, you’ll know who to call,” said Glenn Sandberg, a member of the Albany Bicycle Coalition who attended an announcement at Lions Park in Niskayuna. “It’s a psychological think. You have the security of knowing who you can call.”
Going forward, AAA service vehicles will be standardly equipped with bike racks, but don’t expect service personnel to change a bike tire. They’ll pick you up, though, and provide a ride to a bike shop, to your home or back to the trailhead where your vehicle is. The trucks won’t go out on trails, but they’ll meet bikers at some point service vehicles can reach and then transport them.
“For nearly 100 years, AAA has come to the assistance of motorists stranded by the roadside. Now, AAA’s roadside assistance network is equipped to come to the aid of members choosing a bicycle as a form of transportation,” said Tara Ricard, marketing manager for AAA Hudson Valley.
Assistance is requested by…
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