Let there be lights … and safety for cyclists

City of Lights, a program of the L.A. County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC), is hosting a fund-raising dinner tonight. It’s open to the public and tickets will be available at the door. (Details below.) But even if you’re not in the mood for a nice night out there’s something to be admired in the simplicity of this program, which was launched in 2009 and has now reached about 600 people in need, many of them Latino.

The original thought was that many bike riders in L.A. County use their bicycles not for getting in shape but because they can’t afford cars. Those are riders who probably can’t afford the equipment useful for staying safe on the crazy streets of our city. These same bike riders could probably use a lesson on how to stay safe on the road, as well as what their rights are as bicyclists. Maybe they don’t even know they have rights.

City of Lights started by giving away bike safety helmets and lights. It now has branched out to teaching bike safety classes for free to anyone interested. At the end of the lesson they usually pass out helmets and lights to participants. Metro kicks in bike maps, circle lights and tire patching kits.

The classes are offered about once a month in various venues around town. It’s so low key there’s no schedule posted on the LACBC website, but one of the folks in charge has volunteered to take calls from anyone interested. And yes, the classes are offered in Spanish.

So if you want to learn more about bike safety contact Andy at 323-317-7847.  But don’t go if you can afford your own light. Go if you need assistance.

And if you’re interested in the dinner here are the details: 2nd Annual City of Lights Award Dinner; La Fonda Super Club, 2501 Wilshire Blvd. Los Angeles, 6 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. VIP Reception; 6:30 to 8 p.m. Dinner; 9 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. Music & Dancing.



1 reply

  1. I’m all for bicycle safety. With many bicyclists these days, there are just as many who fail to do simple safety precautions that were originally taught back in school when I was a kid.

    Things like wearing light colored or reflective gear when cycling at night, using common sense to avoid lane splitting between two massive vehicles, watching out for hazards on the road, and being courteous to others.

    Especially the latter; it’s becoming the most common form of morale lacking these days. At least a courtesy or an excuse me, or an apology would be appreciated when they shove their wheels to other passengers on the train. I understand that bicycles are big and needs to be carried around, but that’s not an excuse to just shrug off running over my feet or shoving bicycle tire tread marks onto my shirt.