LACBC Calls for Safety on Pacific Coast Highway

October 16, 2012 at 11:19 am | Posted in Bike News | Leave a comment
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October 15, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LOS ANGELES COUNTY BICYCLE COALITION CALLS FOR SAFETY ON PACIFIC COAST HIGHWAY

LOS ANGELES, Calif. –

The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC) is deeply saddened by the fatal collision between a bicyclist and a Metro bus on Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) in Malibu on Saturday. Preliminary reports indicate that triathlete Marisela Echeverria of Cypress Park was maneuvering around parked cars on the shoulder of the highway when her wheel was caught in a pavement seam and she was thrown toward the passing bus. We send our deepest condolences to her family, friends, and teammates.

Pacific Coast Highway is a notoriously dangerous street for all travelers, and particularly challenging for people on bicycles. Outdated road design, inconsistent shoulders, and high motor vehicle speeds are a perilous combination for people walking or riding along the highway. PCH is Malibu’s main street, yet it was built to rural highway standards that provide first and foremost for the fast movement of vehicles over local access to residences, businesses, and beaches. Bicyclists face increased risks when navigating such a complex traffic environment.

Since the 2005 deaths of Scott Bleifer and Stanislav Ionov, LACBC has worked with stakeholders to improve conditions for bicyclists on the highway. Education, enforcement, and engineering strategies must be used in concert to reduce collision rates. In recent years, the City of Malibu has given considerable attention to these issues and is currently analyzing potential improvements through a $375,000 study funded by Caltrans, the Southern California Associations of Governments, and the City. The City is also currently in design for a bike lane project running two miles from Busch Drive to Trancas Canyon Road. LACBC is encouraged by these preliminary steps.

The California coast is a shared treasure, with access guaranteed by the California Coastal Act and our State’s Constitution. LACBC calls on all jurisdictions to cooperate in providing a safe, continuous bikeway along the Pacific Coast Highway so that all people can enjoy its scenic beauty. We must work together to improve safety in the short term while moving toward a more balanced PCH that better serves residents and visitors in the future.

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Founded in 1998, the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC) is the only non-profit organization working countywide for L.A. County’s 3 million cyclists through advocacy, education, and outreach. LACBC brings together the diverse cycling community in a united mission to make the entire L.A. region a safe and enjoyable place to ride.

For information go to to http://www.la-bike.org or call 213-629-2142.

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