Oceanside Council To Discuss Bike Safety Following Fatality
Wednesday, December 2, 2015
Oceanside City Council will discuss beefing up bicycle safety Wednesday night, following last month's fatal collision that killed a boy who was riding his bike to school.
Deputy Mayor Chuck Lowery said high speeds, blind driveways and bus stops within the bike lane pose hazards to bicyclists on Coast Highway.
“We have to educate the drivers and the people who are riding the bicycles to interact safely with each other,” Lowery said. “That's what the Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee in Oceanside has been doing for years, and it's a very slow process, because people in cars have zero patience and kids on bikes don't know that.”
Lowery said the city will consider safety improvements along a hazardous stretch of Coast Highway, between Oceanside Boulevard and Morse Street.
Road improvements are spelled out in the city's Coast Highway Vision Plan, which was approved several years ago and is used as a development guideline.
“If we were able to narrow the streets, if we were able to mark the segregated bike lanes with the green paint, those things work,” Lowery said. “ In addition to that, the other elements of traffic calming, and education by signage will help what we need to do to make it safe for everyone.”
Lowery said improvements could cost $1 to $2 million.
Immediate actions may be to implement code enforcement measures to prompt businesses along the highway to trim back shrubbery to ensure driver visibility, and establish safe, marked routes to school.
“When I was growing up in Oceanside I rode my bike exactly where he was riding his, not near but exactly where he was riding, on the same sidewalk on the same street,” Lowery said. “As an adult I will not ride my bike on that sidewalk or in that street unless it's the only way to get to where I want to go, because the Coast Highway is completely hazardous to pedestrians and people on bicycles. Vehicle drivers are not paying attention.”
Oceanside City Council meets Wednesday night at 5 p.m.
Promise Yee is a North County freelance writer. Contact her at email@example.com. Twitter: @promisenews.
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