City Issues Statement on Bicycle Safety in Long Beach After Critical Mass Event
2010-11-02 · By Editor
As a Bike-Friendly City, bicycle safety is of utmost importance to Long Beach. On Friday, October 29, 2010 Long Beach Police issued over 70 citations to Critical Mass cyclists who disobeyed the rules of the road.
Long Beach welcomes and supports bike organizations that promote bike awareness and ride our streets; however, as a Bike Friendly City we take bicycle safety seriously and Long Beach must ensure our laws are followed to protect our community and our cyclists. Cyclists that do not follow the rules of the road create motorist animosity towards cyclists, which directly conflicts with Long Beach’s goal of being America’s Most Bike-Friendly City. Riding responsibly is the duty of every cyclist, just as we expect every motorist to respect our cyclists.
In Long Beach, we have completed the following to help make Long Beach more bicycle friendly and safe:
- Installed 35 miles of new bike routes in the past two years, with 45 more coming in the next year.
- Promoted cycling and walking to encourage a healthy, active lifestyle and create a more livable community.
- Launched a safety education campaign to improve bike safety and increased awareness by going into every elementary and middle school in Long Beach, and teaching safety education and awareness to adults to encourage all to share the road safely.
Created innovative bike infrastructure:
- Green Sharrow Lane on 2nd Street in Belmont Shore that opened in June, 2009.
- Bike Boulevard on Vista Street between Temple and Nieto that will open in November.
- Separated Bike Lanes on Broadway & 3rd Street from Golden to Alamitos that will open in February.
- Installing over 2,000 custom bike racks citywide, including bike corrals.
Long Beach thanks all of our cyclists who are riding safely and respectfully and helping Long Beach become America’s Most Bike-Friendly City.
Background on the Critical Mass Event:
On Friday, October 29, 2010, Long Beach Police issued over 70 citations to Critical Mass cyclists who disobeyed the rules of the road, including running stop signs. The group was stopped in the area of Anaheim Road and Palo Verde Avenue and was cited for violating rules of the road as well as safety issues.
In the case of the Critical Mass event, the City’s Special Events Bureau and Long Beach Police Department attempted to work with the organizers in advance of the event. City staff explained what would be required to safely conduct the event, but Critical Mass chose not to apply for a City permit. The group was informed by the Police Department that the City would not allow violations of City safety laws. Twenty-one bikes were impounded that night for not having required safety equipment (including bikes with no brakes). Appointments for pickup can be made by calling 562.570.1075.