LAPD Posts Officer Training Program for Bicycle Safety on YouTube

(While working on the Wilbur Road Diet Story, I received this letter from Sargent David Krumer of the LAPD announcing that the Department had posted their fifteen minute bicycle training course online.  Krumer’s email is posted in its entirety after the video.  I’ll leave the commenting up to you. – DN)

Hello Everyone,

At the Mayor’s Bike Summit, a promise was made to the cycling community that there would be greater communication and cooperation between the various City Departments and the cycling community.  To that end the LAPD has recently posted the training that all LAPD officers were required to take to educate them on the specific rules of the road as they apply to cyclists. The training can be found on LAPDonline in the cycling awareness section and was also posted to youtube by Joe Linton (Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee).  Additionally the training may also be available soon on the Mayors website as well as LADOT.

The training was developed with input from our partners which included Aurisha Smolarski (Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition), Ted Rogers (Bikinginla/LACBC), Ron Durgin (Sustainable Streets), Enci Box (Illuminate LA), Dr. Alex Thompson (BikesideLA.org), Stephen Box (SoapBoxLA), Carlos Morales (Eastside Bike Club), and Glenn Bailey (Mayoral appointee to the Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee). These activists and cycling representatives worked tirelessly to ensure your voices are heard.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m1N3Q3lLBIk

Sgt. David Krumer

  • Thanks to Rob Adams – who actually did the conversion I am credited for (and also did the 101010 CicLAvia Streetfilm.) The original LAPD material is a slide show with audio and quiz pages. Rob did the capture and put it all back together as a YouTube-able video.

    And thanks to Sgt. Krumer for sharing this with the general public.

  • Barry Korman

    If you are going to bike to work you need hi vis retro reflect items on the bike and the rider. You need to be more visible to the automobile divers.
    If you can be seen your chance of not being hit improve tremendously. I ride to work every day and I have reflective stickers on my bike, helmet and spokes.
    I feel much safer knowing I can be seen in early evening and at night.

  • The video is very helpful and much needed.

    One nitpick: at minute 7:31, the narrator states, “In addition to equipment deficiencies such as no brakes, no lights, and no helmets, cyclists at times engage in behaviors that place them in greater danger than they otherwise would face.” While brakes are required on all bicycles, and lights are required at night, helmets are not required for cyclists eighteen years old or older.

  • David Murphy

    So grateful that this was done. Thank you, LAPD!

  • Rick Heppert

    Overall excellent, but even the narrator got it wrong on the riding to the right. She reads the cyclist must travel as far right as practical not practicable.

  • The video makes some important points, but I did not find it to very clear or engaging. In particular, it does almost nothing to resolve the confusion about the far-right law and lane control, and about the mandatory bike lane use law and the possible hazards of bike lanes.

  • Ian Cooper

    I found the video quite unclear. Also, the video fails to address certain common basic errors police make when interacting with cyclists. Stress needs to be placed on the issue of perceived safety vs. actual safety, as many police officers seem to think that taking up a third of the lane is more dangerous than cycling in the gutter or on the sidewalk (actually the reverse is true). As Eli says, the far right law is not helpful, as it seems to support this flawed notion that gutter riding is legal and safe.

  • Steven Goodridge

    Indeed, the bicycle-stay-right law is the law most commonly misunderstood by police, and this training makes things worse by explicitly claiming that bicyclists are required by the law to get out of motorists’ way. The training does not educate officers about the bicyclist’s right to control a narrow travel lane under conditions where drivers will not be able to pass safely in the same lane. Speaking as an LCI who has been pulled over by police for riding near the center of an 11′ lane on a 4-lane street, I think the training program is severely lacking.

  • Sgt David Krumer

    The LAPD is in the process of developing training that specifically addresses lane position. In this training officers will be advised that cyclists are entiltled to use of the entire lane (rather than the gutter). Lane position is such a large topic that we felt we had to address it as a topic in itself.

  • Sgt. Krumer: Thank you for responding, and for understanding the difficulty and the importance of the topic of lane position.

  • Bill Davidson

    I appreciate the effort that went into making this video and most of it seems correct. However, like others, I am concerned that CVC 21202 was poorly explained. It did mention that bicyclists may use the full lane but it doesn’t really explain why or under what circumstances other than avoiding the door zone. It really needs to explain the issue of substandard width lanes (less than 14 feet). I also didn’t like it saying that bicyclists have to get out of the way of motorists. CVC 21202 does not say that.

    Thank you Sgt Krumer for responding. I look forward to seeing what you come up with for lane positioning. It’s probably the most widely misunderstood subject regarding bicycles in the road. Even judges sometimes get it wrong. We had a couple of 21202 cases here in San Diego a couple of years ago that had to go to appeals court to get overturned even though in both cases, multiple exceptions in 21202, and the conditions for those exceptions were even in the officer’s testimony. Those tickets never should have been issued in the first place.

    Finally, I also agree that the video is not very engaging. I can easily imagine some young cadet or new officer watching this and nodding off.

    Here’s one made by Chicaco PD as an example of a somewhat more engaging video:

    http://www.chicagobikes.org/video/index.php?loadVideo=police_training_2009

    San Francisco PD also did one. It’s maybe a little too jazzy:

    http://www.sfbike.org/?bikelaw_sfpd_video

  • Bill Davidson

    If forgot to mention that the door zone safety issue could use a little more explanation. The obvious cause of injury there is that the bicyclist runs into the open door at full speed. The less obvious situation is when the door hits the bicyclist from the side knocking them down on the ground to the left of the car or causes the bicyclist to swerve left to avoid the door. Either way, they end up way left of where they were with no warning to drivers overtaking them from behind and the bicyclist gets run over. Some mention of that should probably be made, just so that officers understand the seriousness of “dooring”.

  • Ian Cooper

    That Chicago video is great! Kept me interested all the way through, whereas I was skipping ahead on the LAPD one. All educational videos should strive for that level of clarity and entertainment. This is not a dry subject at all.

  • I agree. The Chicago piece is very good.

  • Sgt. David Krumer

    I will see if we can get more live action in the next video.

  • Aurisha

    Thank you David Krumer for all your work in making this available to the public. Your dedication is much appreciated.

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