ASK JOEY

Dec 21, 2012 10:35 AM by Cecilia Stevenson

Ask Joey 12/20/2012

Parish President Joey Durel can be seen on GMA every Thursday around 6:40am to answer your questions.

Question from Dennis Bullard:
It would seem from the news that the bike and pedestrian incident rate is high. Do you have statistics on this and what might be the plans to better provide for the safety of that mode of transportation?

Response:
- Lafayette Consolidated Government has a lot of statistics related to bicycle and pedestrian crashes. We receive the stats from two primary sources:
1. The Lafayette Police Dept. and Lafayette Parish Sheriff's Office provide crash reports directly to LCG immediately following any incident involving a crash (including bicycle, pedestrian and motor vehicle).
2. We also receive crash data from LACRASH which is an electronic database of all crashes reported to the State Department of Transportation; this database includes information submitted by ULL and LA State Troopers in addition to the information provided by LPD and LPSO.


- LCG staff engineers and planners use this data to identify "problem spots" or issues of concern. For example, after the death of a bicyclist on Johnston St. last year, LCG staff reviewed previous crash reports on Johnston and recognized a pattern of crashes which showed cyclists were riding in the opposite direction of motor vehicle traffic (which is against the law). In response to our findings, LCG worked with DOTD to install warning signage along the Johnston St. bike lane which directs cyclists to ride with traffic.
· All modes of transportation- whether motor vehicle, bicycle or pedestrian- can be relatively safe if everyone remembers to do their part by knowing what their responsibilities are, maintaining awareness of their surroundings and other roadway users, and following the rules of the road (list below). A preliminary analysis of 2012 data shows that more than half of the bicycle accidents involving vehicles resulted in a citation to the cyclist because he/she was not following the rules of the road.

* Anyone interested can call the Traffic and Transportation department for more information and specific stats.*


The following is a list of TOP 10 TIPS for Safe Bicycling:
1. CHECK YOUR BIKE: Make sure your tires are properly inflated and not worn, and your brakes are in good condition.
2. USE YOUR HEAD: Look and listen for traffic, and wear a properly fitted helmet.
3. RIDE WITH TRAFFIC: Ride in the same direction as traffic, staying to the right where practical, and usually in the rightmost lane in the direction you are going.
4. WHEN IN DOUBT "TAKE THE LANE": It may be safer to "take the lane" to remain visible when riding at the same speed as other traffic (e.g. when stopped, in traffic jams, or on very narrow roads), especially at intersections.
5. OBEY TRAFFIC LAWS: Follow all traffic laws. Avoid a crash and earn respect on the road by driving your bike lawfully and courteously. Stop signs and red lights mean "stop" for both motorists AND cyclists.
6. PAY ATTENTION: Watch out for road hazards like gravel, potholes, and parked cars where doors may open. Anticipate what drivers and pedestrians may do next.
7. COMMUNICATE: Use hand signals to show your intention (left, right, stop). Connect personally with drivers by making eye contact.
8. BE PREDICTABLE: Ride a straight course without weaving in traffic or through parked cars.
9. LIGHT UP @ NIGHT: Your bike must have reflectors, and a front white light, and rear red when riding at night. Wear bright colored clothing for visibility.
10. KEEP YOUR COOL: Road rage after a close call benefits no one and makes a bad situation worse

If you have a question for Joey Durel go to www.katc.com under the GMA tap and click "submit Joey Durel question"

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