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Opinion, Santa Monica, Biking

Letter To The Editor: Police Operated Bike Trap Is Truly Extortionate

Posted May. 14, 2014, 9:17 am

Letter To The Editor

Dear Editor,

As a resident of the Ocean Park community of Santa Monica I truly love to ride my bike on the beach bike path. As such, I was shocked to have a very unfriendly encounter with a police officer in Redondo Beach this weekend while peacefully riding on the bike path.

I was slowly riding my bike in the path (~5 mph) on a Sunday afternoon when an officer demanded that I get off. Surprised I immediately got off of the bike and walked over to the officer. I asked what I did wrong, and he scoffed saying that I was in a no bike zone, and he immediately took out his pad to start writing a ticket. Startled I asked where the signs were, and he assured me there was a large stop sign, with lights, and it was extremely clear.

After receiving my ticket and marching back, what I saw was a police operated bike trap, whereby the city is writing tickets in excess of $100. There was no writing on the pavement, and there was only one small, unassuming sign indicating that bikers should stop riding in this area. While there were blinking red lights, the vehicle code meaning of those lights is to stop and then proceed, not to stop and walk ones bike.  I fully appreciate the need for safety on bike paths, but this is truly extortionate. What about all the pedestrians who strut their stuff on the bike lanes? Redondo Beach is clearly desperate for revenue and thereby setting a trap to catch people from outside the area.

Santa Monica residents, do yourselves a favor and simply avoid the Redondo Beach part of the bike path, it's unsafe at any speed.

Craig Muhlrad

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Comments

May. 14, 2014, 11:05:03 am

Jim said...

This sounds like Hermosa, not Redondo. In Redondo, you have to walk through the pier area. No blinking red lights.

May. 14, 2014, 11:07:27 am

John Barsky said...

I'll be real careful in Redondo. What really irks me is how the SMPD and th LAPD are letting skateboards on the pedestrain walks and people are allowed to walk freely on the bike ways. The whole enforcement thing needs to be done right in Santa Monica and Venice. It's very dangerous to the pedestrains and the bike riders. The beaches are a zoo of people who don't follow safety laws and the enforcement to make it safer for the bike riders is way lacking. I know because i use the bike lanes at the beach

May. 15, 2014, 10:27:19 am

Oh dear said...

Maybe you should just try to obey the laws like everyone else. Some bikers (not all) have really bad attitudes and an obvious disdain for traffic laws or anyone not on two wheels.

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