Thursday, September 4, 2008

Schools, bicycles, and cars

OK, here I go again.

With the summer days now a thing of the past, the march of children to their neighborhood (or not so neighborhood) schools has begun. Here's a thought: take a moment before you launch your 2 ton vehicles down the road and remind yourself that between the hours of 7-9AM and 2-4PM children have also hit the streets.

Just this Wednesday, on the very first day of school for Foothill Middle School in Azusa, an 11 year old was struck and killed by a driver. His body was thrown 100-125 feet and he was treated for head injuries. The child appeared to have been riding his bicycle without a helmet in a crosswalk. It's unknown at this time whether he was riding against the signal, and the article didn't mention a crossing guard at the crosswalk less than two blocks from the school.

As reported in the SGVT, the driver was arrested at the scene and booked on 3 previous warrants (two of them traffic-related).

It isn't clear who is at fault, but any accident involving a cyclist or a pedestrian can be deadly. Why wasn't there a crossing guard at that location? Why don't the police seem to enforce the helmet laws? Why do traffic engineers raise speed limits before demanding the police departments enforce the existing speed limits?

On a personal note, while riding with my daughter to school today, two cars coasted through stop signs/lights and barely avoided hitting us. In the 2+ miles to school, we traveled through 3 council districts and never found a bike lane. And how many police officers did I see enforcing traffic laws outside of the!

And why isn't the Daily Bulletin reporting on the story if only for its public service benefit .................I guess they're waiting for a child to be hit in the Inland Empire. Hopefully, it doesn't happen too soon.


Anduhrew said...

I ride my bike from near the DMV to cal poly pomona, i take different routes but usually go up garey and turn onto holt.
while most drivers are friendly enough to let me go by there are still some areas that are DANGEROUS. Garey Avenue DEFINITELY has enough room for a bike lane.

What would it take to get a bike lane? and why don't we have one already?

me said...

Lots of us have been wondering that for awhile. Not to be Lincoln Park, centric, but I am suprised that the business owners downtown have not pushed the idea of a bicycle bouevard down Palomares from the Lincoln Park District to Second Street. Western University might even help fund it, given that many of their students live around here. I too wonder what it takes, but Pomona is famous for making the obvious more difficult than it needs to be. A bike path on Garey would be excellent (Towne, where I have never seen the police give out speeding tickets, is out of control scarey with speeding cars.) I'm hoping it will be a platform for one of the upcoming mayoral candidates.

G of P

Anonymous said...

Several years ago my son, who was 10 at the time, got a ticket for riding double. Now days you can ride double, no helmet, ride in the cross walks(spose to walk your bike)and ride on the sidewalk(adults) and ride the wrong way on the streets.How about some safety classes for bikes and maybe even a license? Sorry I have to go get some donuts.