Regulation of the Day 187: Pedicabs

Pedicabs are the 21st century version of the rickshaw. A two-seat carriage is attached to a bicycle, and the driver will pick up customers and take them where they want to go. They’re especially popular around the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Many of the drivers are cycling enthusiasts who get to make a little extra money and meet friendly people while getting some exercise.

The city has traditionally treated pedicabs with a light regulatory touch. At least until recently. The D.C. Council now wants to require pedicab passengers to wear seatbelts.

That’s not all. Pedicabs will be required to have standardized braking system, no doubt to the delight of at least one lucky brake manufacturer. When cars are present, pedicabs will also be required to stick to the lane closest to the curb. This is legislating common sense.

The D.C. Council is expected to pass the legislation this fall.