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News, Santa Monica, Police Department

Santa Monica Police Department To Crack Down On Bicyclists Breaking Law

Posted Dec. 3, 2012, 1:15 am

Brenton Garen / Editor-in-Chief

For the month of December, Santa Monica Police Department motor officers in addition to their normal duties, will focus on bicyclists who fail to follow the rules of the road.

From Jan. 1, 2012 through Nov. 22, 2012 the SMPD has investigated 129 collisions involving bicycles.

Each month, the SMPD's Traffic Enforcement Unit focuses on different driving behaviors that are the primary causes for traffic collisions.

California Vehicle Code Section 21200 identifies laws applicable to bicycles:

A person riding a bicycle or operating a pedicab upon a highway has all the rights and is subject to all the provisions applicable to the driver of a vehicle.

In a majority of these collisions, the bicyclist was determined to not be at fault for the accident.

However, when bicyclist have been found to be at fault, the common causations have ranged from failure to stop at traffic signals and stop signs, failure to ride upon the right-side of the roadway, unsafe turning movements, riding under the influence and unsafe speed.

Bicycle Liaison Officer Peter Lashley wants to remind all bicycle riders that rules of the road pertain to bicycle riders also.

Further, bicyclists are not permitted to ride upon any sidewalk in the city of Santa Monica and doing so is a violation of the city's municipal code.

Post a comment


Dec. 3, 2012, 3:28:05 pm

mangeleno said...

operating a bicycle on a sidewalk is also a violation of the CA Vehicle Code, just as is operating a ve3hicle on a sidewalk. If SMPD is serious about citing bicyclists who fail to obey stop signs, then the City had better notify its Worker's Compensation carrier for an expected increase in claims for writers cramp!

Dec. 3, 2012, 10:57:20 pm

Samo said...

I hope they crack down on cyclists who use the sidewalk. It poses a serious risk to pedestrians.

Dec. 4, 2012, 2:40:33 am

RIDER1 said...

Anybody else notice that they will " focus on different driving behaviors that are the primary causes for traffic collisions." and then later they say " majority of these collisions, the bicyclist was determined to not be at fault for the accident" So why focus on bike riders

Dec. 4, 2012, 2:50:34 am

Kazi Myers said...

I like to ride on the sidewalk (1)when I feel the drivers on the road are not being safe or the road is not designed for a bicycle lane (2) and when there is no one on the sidewalk. Maybe the police should note these circumstances in considering whether it is necessary to strictly go by the code. Also, I hope my niece and nephew can ride on the sidewalk without some police office from giving them a ticket like I used to do when I was a kid in Santa Monica.

Dec. 4, 2012, 3:16:50 am

L. McCann said...

I tell my daughters to stay up on the side walk as much as possible to avoid being hit. After using the streets to ride their bikes (some unmarked) for bikes. They both have been hit by cars. One at a residential 4 way stop and the other when a truck drove out of a ally way with your stopping. Both the "rider" and the "driver" need to be on high alert. But Bikers, seems there isn't much fun to ride in your own neighborhood any more. Shame.

Dec. 5, 2012, 10:33:28 am

Driver in SM said...

Finally! You bike riders seem willing to risk your life just to prove your "right" to be on the road with my 2,000lb car. I am trying to avoid you be courteous, but use some common sense and be aware of your surroundings bikers weaving in and out of lanes! Please, be safe.

Dec. 5, 2012, 11:21:37 pm

Steve said...

I ride a bike myself quite often and don't mind bikes on sidewalks if they are going slow and there are only a few people. What I don't like are those bike riders who wear a biking uniform and put on the attitude that seems to go along with that uniform. You know who you are. You think you own the road and you put out all that negative energy..especially when you guys ride in packs. And you wonder why you get all that negative energy back from people?

Dec. 4, 2012, 12:22:57 pm

Carla said...

Bicyclists not exempt: I have seen too many bicyclists ignore stop signs and red lights all too often. The last thing I want is for some idiot riding a bicycle on the hood of my car because he failed to follow the law. Red light and stop signs mean STOP regardless if you are driving, walking or yes, even riding a bicycle!

Dec. 8, 2012, 10:34:41 am

joe said...

ive had to slam on my brakes a few times going down 11th st from pico towards ocean park,bicylist com down from euclid down the hill towards 11th n dont stop at the bottom clearly ignoring the stop signs,everyone on the road needs to be aware of there surroundings,be safe

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