Keep Pedestrians Safe – Santa Barbara News-Press
DID YOU KNOW? Bonnie Donovan
We have already discussed objections to plans to remove mature trees in the Modoc Reserve.
We agree with the need to ensure the safety of cyclists. We agree with the need to preserve, as much as possible, the beautiful trees that provide shade and habitat for wildlife. We must find alternative solutions to the current plan, in order to achieve these goals in a cooperative and collaborative way, where citizens and officials join in the preservation of our heritage.
Overall, we strive to maintain the beauty and traditions that have made Santa Barbara one of the most desirable small towns in the world. That’s why we also strive to protect neighborhoods from overbuilding. Our safety concerns include pedestrian safety.
We believe it is necessary to protect cyclists traveling at 10-15 mph from cars traveling at 30-40 mph. Pedestrians traveling at 3-4 mph must also be protected from bicycles traveling at 10-20 mph.
Just days ago, the Santa Barbara Police Department confirmed that some e-bikes can travel up to 28 mph. Will 28mph police e-bikes be allowed to ride on shared lanes?
An 83-year-old lady called to report that she was nearly run over last Saturday night by a cyclist on an e-bike while walking along State Street. She said they were texting while they were driving. Who protects the traveling public?
We just got another report of a teenager traveling fast on an e-bike along Calle Real, who crossed the stop sign at the junction for the 101 freeway exit in El Sueno.
Back to multi-use/shared lanes being introduced. Some by design, and some by default, already exist. Did you know? looked at the diversity of users on all walking trails.
There are pedestrians with their dogs walking between 1.5mph and 3mph with frequent stops while their dogs sniff around.
Plus, young mothers are walking with their 6 and 7 year olds or pushing babies in their strollers at 1-3 mph. Then dedicated walking pedestrians move forward at 2.5 to 4 mph. Tracked by joggers ranging from 4 to 6 mph.
Determined runners jostle at 8 mph for men and 6.5 mph for women. Then there are people with disabilities in their motorized wheelchairs driving at 5 to 8 mph.
Did you know that in this mix of slow vehicles on shared lanes, fast vehicles of pedal bikes travel at 15 mph and e-bikes can travel 20 mph and faster, under electric power and the power of combo pedals?
Back to electric bikes. There is a class 1 bike that has electric motor assistance when the pedals are spinning. This bike can reach 20 mph on the flat. Then there is the Class 2 bike which has an electric motor manually controlled by the rider. It can also reach 20 mph on the flat. The Class 3 bike has a more powerful electric motor and can reach speeds of 28 mph on the flat.
There are certain restrictions on where a Class 3 bike can be used. But there is virtually no enforcement of traffic rules for bicycles used in defiance of posted signs prohibiting cycling, as we have seen and learned.
Therefore, we expect all categories of e-bikes to be used wherever the rider wants to ride them. We can already see it on the paths where all bicycles are prohibited.
Regulations have little relevance without enforcement. The application requires patrolling feet. It requires the identification of the authors. Identification is impossible to verify without license plates on e-bikes. Penalties for infractions should include impoundment of the bike and a hefty fine.
Did you know that there are no special traffic law training requirements, no license requirements and no insurance requirements to own and operate an e-bike capable of such speeds, with sufficient momentum and power. kinetic force impact to cause serious injury?
There do not appear to be any regulatory speed limits for e-bikes, due to electric motor speed limitations, although these limitations can be circumvented on road gradients, by pedaling quickly and converting class bikes 2 in class 3 speed capabilities.
There seems to be no age limit for using e-bikes on trails, roads or anywhere else. Additionally, we have heard reports of two and even three minors aboard an e-bike driving dangerously on the roads. From our research to date, we can only see that you need to be 16 for a Class 3 e-bike.
We hear complaints from pedestrians that teenage and young adult e-bikers harass and bully them. It seems the speed of these bikes gives riders a sense of power and entitlement that they have the right of way and pesky, slow pedestrians thwart that realization.
Yet as it stands, unless we stop it by speaking out, writing letters, and attending city/county meetings, we’ll see e-bikes allowed in city plans. new State Street Promenade and on all existing and new shared walkways.
Think about it. You walk along a footpath at about 3 mph. Two people on e-bikes come up behind you. They are distracted and can’t stop until one of them hits you from behind at 21 km/h.
A 45-pound e-bike ridden by a person weighing 140 pounds at a speed of 13 mph has a maximum potential kinetic energy at the point of impact of 1,378.8 Joules. In practice, the collision would deliver less energy, depending on the angle and contact points between the body and the bike. But probably enough to cause bodily harm.
Back to our tree count, we were informed that the city of Santa Barbara has removed 170 trees in the already complete Los Positas/Modoc multi-use bike path. This represents only five projects with a total of 335 trees felled.
Where are our officials, elected to protect us all? The state just passed more laws allowing all of these e-bikes without insurance, licenses, or helmets. Again, we ask who will pay for the injuries: the city, the county or the state? Our city and county have the right to create local regulations, but will they?