The Idaho Statesman reports that the Idaho Department of Transportation has added more questions about cycling to its pool of driving test questions. The decision comes after a five-year-old boy was hit by a car last September.
The boy in question, Max Wyatt of Boise, is now out of hospital, but Steve Grant, a spokesman for the department, said: "I think it is fair to say this tragedy kind of opened the discussion."
Wyatt was riding his bike when he was struck by a minivan that travelled for several more seconds before coming to a stop. His injuries included a collapsed lung, broken pelvis and broken left leg.
Bicycle related questions have always featured in the state’s driving test. However, it was possible to get a test that did not have a question on the subject. Grant said this was now no longer the case.
Back in 2013, the Get Britain Cycling inquiry recommended that cycle awareness should be incorporated into the UK driving test. The Institute of Advanced Motorists also wants to see the testing system ensuring that new drivers know how to behave around cyclists.
Idaho is perhaps best known among cyclists for lending its name to the ‘Idaho Stop’ law. Introduced in 1982, the law allows cyclists to treat red lights as stop signs, and proceed if the way is clear.
London campaigners recently said that a version of the Idaho Law would be a simpler solution than new technology being trialled in Denmark that changes lights to green to allow cyclists to ride through.
The city of Aarhus is currently testing the new technology, which is based on Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags. However, Donnachadh McCarthy, co-founder of the Stop Killing Cyclists campaign group, said: “Whilst well intentioned, this is a very expensive and slow way of using technology to introduce what effectively is called the Idaho Law. This law at very low expense would require cyclists in London to treat red-lights as 'yield right of way' signs, allowing them to turn left when there is no traffic or pedestrians.”