New Website Bikex Wants You to Be a Bike Cop Too

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After the city’s Bike Advisory Committee elected a new board chair and vice chair, Ed Bailey and Jay Slater, respectively, a bike advocate took the opportunity during public comment to announce a new web site designed to empower cyclists after incidents with automobiles.

The Bikex Database is an online resource to identify, document, and
prosecute drivers who harass, abuse, or endanger bicycle riders.  Basically, if a cyclist has an experience with a driver, they can email or text the information to the database and the incident will be plotted on a map and stored in the database.  If the same license plate is reported by three different people, the database will send an email alerting the three victims so that they can work together to pursue legal options. 

At the very least, the database can show us the problem areas in the city, places where cyclists are more at risk from unsafe drivers than other areas.

Thanks to Ubrayj02, Enci and Zane Selvans for the tip.

Photo: cactfyl/Flickr

  • I offered in person, and I will offer it publicly online, to personally help track down and compile reports of crashes and other traffic incidents of bike vs. car, ped vs. car, etc. and help create a historical database using this developing software.

    This is a resource that any politician looking to make some campaign promises come true would dream of.

    No city agency tracks this vital set of data – and we are all the worse for that omission.

    Can you imagine the power of waving a stack of reports of deaths and injuries on our roads in front of an elected committee and asking, “How many deaths will it take for you to lower speed limits?!”

    Right now everyone has anecdotal evidence only – we need some hard data to get L.A. moving in a livable streets direction.

  • I love the idea, and Portland has been doing this for a little while. Since the city doesn’t care to track cycling information, we need to start doing it ourselves.

  • KateNonymous

    Great idea, although their site design needs a little work. A lot of the text on their home page gets lost against the background and other design elements.

  • we use data collected by the state patrol. its quite detailed
    http://www.chp.ca.gov/switrs/switrs2000.html

    but i’m always a fan of people sharing information. this could be a great resource.

  • I’m hoping that one day the Gods will unlock the door that hides the following:

    The motion that approved the 2002 Bike Plan is identified with Council File Number 01-2396.

    pg. 100 of CF 01-2396:

    Planning for Safe Urban Bicycling: An Analysis of Bicycle Collisions in Los Angeles

    In 2000, the Los Angeles Department of Transportation undertook an evaluation of its bicyclist / motor vehicle conflicts between the years of 1994 and 1998. The project evaluated 6,611 traffic collisions involving bicycles and attempted to assess the safety of bicycling in Los Angeles. The study also sought to identify factors influencing bicycle safety which the City could address in future bicycle policy, in planning efforts, as well as in educational and capital projects in order to improve bicycle safety in the future.

  • Wouldn’t that report from the state, David, be so much cooler if it were dumped into a big map of the state with each item searchable on the map by date, type of incident, etc.?

    I am constantly reminded of the LA Homicide Map/Blog that the L.A. Times does.

    With so many people dying or being injured in car crashes, why not have something similar for our roadways? Homicide is relatively infrequent – car crashes and deaths happen every day in numbers bigger than most would expect.

  • Something like this could be very useful. I’ve tried for some time to figure out a way to make this sort of thing work. Of course, the problem is that neither law enforcement nor the DMV will take it seriously, since it would be too easy to file a false report just to get even with someone. And they don’t tend to take us seriously, anyway.

    As Brayj points out, the greatest utility will probably come in the form of statistics that will enable us to argue our case more forcefully. But if we could combine this with Ingrid Peterson’s suggestion to develop some sort of legal collective for the local cycling community (http://rearviewrider.wordpress.com/2009/01/21/rules-of-the-road/), we might really have something here.

  • I am glad to see something like this existing, databases are handy tools.

    I’ve been reading a lot of legal stuff with bikes and transportation in the law and collecting links and references…sort of a bicycle librarian kind of thing – i’ll be developing that more in the coming months…

    the better the resources are collected and shared, the more effectively they can be used.

    *****

    also, can i please propose a Streetsblog live meet-up, at some local restaurant or bar to discuss further on all the good ideas brewing here??

    LA Streetsblog live meet up — Damien, make it happen!!

  • Well, it just so happens that the Bike Oven is having something like that for us to get together and talk bike politics, strategy and WTFBBQSAUCE.

    We’re gettin together on a Sunday evening in February at 6 p.m. – on Feb. 22 I believe. The BBQ will be fired up, tables arranged, and we’re going to figure out how to best direct our actions to make things better for bikes (and probably drink some beer?).

  • Rad. I’m there!

    I’ll have some legal research to bring in by then.

  • Joe Student

    Some general info on general bike fatalities and injuries in LA County is on SCAG’s website starting on about page 13
    http://www.scag.ca.gov/rtp2008/pdfs/finalrtp/reports/fNonMotorizedTransportation.pdf

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