March 19, 2013

L.A. Metro launches bike safety campaign

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) is launching a new campaign to increase bicycle safety.

The campaign will include messages on the back of 75 Metro buses, 135 billboards and spots on 21 local radio stations throughout the region. The campaign, called "Every Lane is a Bike Lane ... Bicyclists may need a full lane; Please share the road," will run between March and May, leading up to Bike Week L.A. May 13 to 17

With bicycling increasing in popularity as a viable transportation mode, more biking events like CicLAvia and more new bikeways being installed on a regular basis, Metro's extensive campaign will help raise motorist awareness that cyclists have equal rights and responsibilities to the road per the California Vehicle Code.

"The breakneck pace of bikeway construction demonstrates that Los Angeles is riding fast on its way to becoming a truly bike-friendly city," said L.A. City Mayor Antonio Villariagosa. "As more cyclists take to our streets we need to ensure that safety and awareness are of utmost importance as our riders share the road."

It is becoming increasingly important for motorists and cyclists to safely co-exist on the region's roadways. In L.A. County, 19% of all trips are made by walking and biking, but bicyclists and pedestrians make up 395 of roadway fatalities.

In the Southern California region, nearly 4% of all traffic-related fatalities involved cyclists, and 4.3% of all traffic-related injuries involved cyclists.

As part of its overall bicycle safety campaign, Metro also plans to begin traffic skills courses for bicyclists to help ensure cyclists know their responsibilities for riding safely on local streets. Additionally, Metro is planning to sponsor 20 bike rides to further promote safe cycling in Los Angeles County.

This bicycle safety campaign is made possible by Metro's Bicycle Program, which has worked closely with the bicycle community on numerous initiatives related to bicycling and transit. Since 1993, Metro has funded more than $100 million in bicycle improvement projects in the county.

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