Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Rolling on the Metro

L.A. Bus and Train Lines

Ride your bike and ride for free on Thursday! Just carry your bike or helmet on any bus or train for a free ride on bike to work day (May 14, 2009).

If you haven't ridden the bus or train, have been too shy to try it, or simply want to find a good use for the bicycle collecting dust in your garage, try riding to work tomorrow. If you do, you could be entered to win fabulous prizes (in this context, fabulous prizes include, but are not limited to, electric bicycles).

Never ridden your bike in Los Angeles before? Here is some help with planning your route:

And finally, here are some frequently asked questions about riding your bicycle:
  1. Do I have to wear a helmet?

    While you won't get a ticket if you are an adult for not wearing your helmet, you are crazy if you don't.

  2. Can I ride on the sidewalk?

    You can ride on the sidewalk in Los Angeles, as long as you are not endangering pedestrians.

  3. What if there isn't a bike lane?

    Cyclists call it "Taking a Lane" when you ride so that a car must leave the lane in order to pass you. This is legal, and encouraged by many bike riders. Don't be afraid - you have a right to be in the lane - although if it is rush hour, it might be a bit terrifying.

  4. How do I put my bike on the bus?

    It can be scary the first time, but if you are taking your bike on the bus, it needs to go on the bus rack in front (note: these are sometimes full, and not available on all busses).

    If you are the first one with a bike, lower the rack by squeezing the handle. Load your bike into one of the slots, and lift the securing bar. It is a good idea to let your driver know your stop when you board the bus. If you are the last one with a bike, make sure you put the bike rack back up before riding off!

If you're interested in more information about riding your bicycle in Los Angeles, or advocating for future bike routes, the Los Angeles Department of Transportation has information for LA City, while Metro has information and planning sessions for bikeways covering all of LA County.