Public Comment

Light the Bike

By Harry Brill
Saturday February 15, 2014 - 11:56:00 AM

Too many bicycles and autos collide, often resulting in serious injury and even death for the cyclist. Although all bikers are at risk, according to the California Highway Patrol teenage cyclists were involved in more traffic collisions than any other age group. It is urgent that our elected officials, both at the state and local levels, take notice and do something about it, particularly addressing the high risk of night cycling. 

Just blaming those on the road for poor judgment serves as an excuse to ignore the problem. Most streets, including many thoroughfares, lack adequate lighting. So visibility is very poor in the bay area. But blaming the public is a lot cheaper than providing funds to improve visibility. 

However, providing adequate lighting is not going to happen soon or perhaps ever. Nevertheless, at no cost to public budgets, our elected public officials can accomplish a great deal by legally requiring cyclists to light up their bikes. A headlight should be attached to the bike or mounted on the bicycle helmet. The bicycle should also include a flashing light in the rear. A cyclist should also be required to carry a rechargeable battery pack. Like automobiles, adequate lighting on bikes should be made mandatory. 

Remember, we are talking about saving lives and protecting the physical well being of those who take to the road with their non-polluting vehicles. Also, these accidents are traumatic to drivers as well. Please urge state legislators and elected officials in our cities to take action right away.