Mick Hondlik

Bicycle Emergency Network of New York

BENNY is an organic network for NYC cyclists that uses SMS communication during personal or community emergencies to quickly relay information. BENNY also aims to aid NYC by providing reliable information to authorities in emergency situations.



BENNY is a prototype communication network created by designer and engineer (and cyclist) Mick Hondlik. Cyclists who register with BENNY will be able to get help when they need it, similar to the way motorists use AAA. If a cyclist gets a flat tire, for example, they can text BENNY which will relay the message to other riders registered in the area who can then reply via the network if they are able to assist. BENNY can also be utilized when there is an emergency situation, hurricane Sandy for example, in NYC. In such a situation BENNY would send SMS requests to the city-wide web of cyclists, independent sources who can quickly gather information regarding area conditions and create a reliable data set for emergency responders to consult.

I've been playing with this idea for a while but it became very relevant during hurricane Sandy which prompted me to turn it into my thesis.

Everyone who rides a bike!

User Scenario
Tons of riders join the network. Riders text BENNY when they have a bike issue. Network members respond and help. The network grows to reach further!

BENNY is based on a website and database that can take in and redistribute SMS messages to the appropriate nearby members.

Databases and web coding are very difficult to jump into with no experience.