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State Grant Funds Bike Classes in Santa Monica and L.A. County

Santa Monica Real Estate Company, Roque and Mark

 

Rusty's Surf Ranch.com

Harding Larmore Kutcher & Kozal, LLP  law firm
Harding, Larmore Kutcher & Kozal, LLP

By Jason Islas
Staff Writer

July 12, 2013 -- As part of a County-wide initiative funded through a $203,000 State grant to L.A. Metro, Santa Monica's chapter of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition will offer two free bicycle safety classes this summer.

Santa Monica Spoke, the bayside city's branch of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, will teach one three-hour class and one eight-hour class as part of the overall program of 120 free classes offered in Los Angeles County, including 30 in Spanish.

“These classes will provide the knowledge and the skills so people can make safer decisions when they ride their bikes,” said Cynthia Rose, director of Santa Monica Spoke.

The first class organized by Santa Monica Spoke, an all-day comprehensive session, will be on July 22 and is open to the public.

“Learn to ride your bike safely and confidently with traffic, on city and residential streets, or just about anywhere you could want to go on paved roads,” reads the course description on the Coalition's website.

Rose said that the course, which goes from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., has a classroom-based component where participants go over the rules of the road in the California Vehicle Code.

“We go through the reasons for crashes and the causes and give people the skills to prevent a good portion of those,” she said.

“Since most bicyclists also drive cars, it goes to improving the climate and mutual respect when motorists know the rights and responsibilities for all road users,” Rose said.

The eight-hour course also has a road skills component where participants put their newly-acquired skills into practice.

The second class is scheduled for August 11, from 9 a.m. to noon.

“At 3 hours, it’s more basic, but provides the essential information needed to ride safely,” reads Spoke's website.

While Los Angeles may be known the world over for its car culture, people have taken to the streets increasingly on bikes.

“With bicycling becoming wildly popular in L.A. County, it is critically important that our cyclists know the safe ways to ride their bikes on busy L.A. streets, whether for work, school or recreation,” said Diane DuBois, Metro Board Chair.

“Metro is taking a leadership role for the county in offering these traffic safety classes, so be sure to sign up if you are interested, as classes are filling up fast,” she said.

According to Metro, the grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, will help reach 1,440 people.

Rose said that the classes are a valuable component of Santa Monica's -- and Los Angeles' -- increasingly bike-friendly programs.

“Anyone who bikes can learn something from these classes,” she said.

For more information or to sign up for classes, visit Metro.net or smspoke.org.


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