The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department scheduled a bicycle and pedestrian safety enforcement operation in the Santa Clarita area for Wednesday, officials said Sunday.
The operation is expected to take place 7-11 a.m. and aimed at keeping people who need to go out to exercise or run essential errands safe, according to a Sheriff’s Department news release.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has required residents to stay home as much as possible, LASD officials recognize the need to protect the public by looking for violations made by bicyclists, drivers and pedestrians that make roads unsafe.
“Just because there’s less traffic doesn’t mean traffic rules go out the window,” Sgt. Robert Hill said in a statement. “To protect you and your family, we want to make sure those that are out are following rules intended to keep them safe.”
Violations made by bicyclists, drivers and pedestrians that law enforcement look for include speeding, making illegal turns, failing to yield to those on crosswalks and pedestrians who cross the street illegally or fail to yield to drivers, as well as bicyclists and drivers who do not comply with stop signs or signals.
This year alone, LASD has investigated 10 deadly and 270 injury collisions involving bicyclists and pedestrians.
That being said, the LASD offers the following tips when out biking, driving or walking:
- Only cross at marked crosswalks or intersections with a stop sign or signal.
- Look for cars backing up. Avoid going between parked cars.
- Make eye contact with drivers. Don’t assume they see you.
- Wear bright clothing during the day and use a flashlight when walking at night.
- Wait for pedestrians to cross the street. Be courteous and patient.
- Stay off the phone.
- Follow the speed limit.
- Look for pedestrians when backing up or turning.
- Always wear a helmet. Helmets are required by law for anyone under 18.
- Bicyclists must travel in the same direction of traffic and have the same requirements as any slow-moving vehicle.
Everyone who is out is reminded to practice physical distancing measures, when feasible, staying at least 6 feet away from others, per the news release.