UCLA Transportation and the UCLA Police Department (UCPD) have partnered together to launch BruinBikeSmart, the first program of its kind in Los Angeles County. Similar to traffic school, BruinBikeSmart allows cyclists who received a moving violation citation issued by a UCPD Officer to have their citation dismissed by completing an online bike safety course and paying a $75 course fee.
At the discretion of UCPD, UCLA students, staff and faculty who are cited while cycling for a moving violation will be given the opportunity to complete UCLA’s new online Bicycle Citation Diversion Program (BruinBikeSmart). Leading up to the launch on October 10, UCPD will be educating bicyclists on campus about the new program and the importance of bike safety.
Successfully completing BruinBikeSmart keeps the citation off a cyclist’s DMV driving record. They also benefit from getting a significant amount of bike safety education, which, in turn, can benefit pedestrians and motorists on campus paths and streets.
California Vehicle Code states every person riding a bicycle on a street or highway has the same rights and responsibilities as a driver of a motor vehicle. UCPD is responsible for strictly enforcing traffic laws both on and off campus. Bike riders may be cited for running stop signs, riding at unsafe speeds, riding on the wrong side of the road or on sidewalks, not having legal brakes, etc.
Developing the BruinBikeSmart program required an extensive amount of coordination between Transportation, UCPD and the LA County Superior Court. In doing so, “we’ve heard interest expressed by local municipalities in establishing their own like-minded programs,” said Karwaski.