Frequent Driver Education
Making Streets Safer for Everyone
In an effort to make streets safer for everyone, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition initiated a campaign in 2007 to educate professional drivers on how to safely share the road with people biking.
The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition works with the SFMTA to train taxi drivers 2-4 times per month on bicycle safety. Through this program, we are able to educate drivers on bicycle infrastructure, applicable road laws, and best practices for avoiding some of the most common causes of collisions with bicycles. Each training session has an average of 35-45 drivers and each year the SF Bicycle Coalition trains an average of 1,300 drivers.
Commercial Trucks and Big Rigs
In addition to taxi training and the MUNI Operator video, the SF Bicycle Coalition is targeting large vehicle drivers as part of our ongoing professional driver education program. We are working with the City to require that all City employees, City vendors and contractors that work with the City be trained in bicycle and pedestrian safety. We are already working with several private companies, including Recology, to train their drivers.
2007 Billboard Campaign
In fall of 2007, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition worked with the Municipal Transportation Agency to create a series of educational billboards with safety messaging for bike riders and drivers.
In 2003, the SFBC was funded by the Department of Public Health to carry out a program to reduce injury collisions that occur between bus or taxi drivers and cyclists.
To gauge existing attitudes that influence on-road behavior, we held 3 focus groups, one each for bicyclists, Muni drivers, and taxi drivers. The main comments from bus drivers and taxi drivers about bicyclists was concern about the fact that many San Francisco cyclists ride after dark without both a front and rear light. When cyclists wear dark clothing, these professional drivers report not being able to see the cyclist until they were very close. As a result of these comments, we worked with Muni to produce an extensive ad campaign directed at cyclists reminding them that using lights after dark is the safe thing to do, and also the law. We also distribute thousands of lights to bike riders in conjunction with the SF MTA in our Light Up the Night campaign.
Through surveys, focus groups, anecdotal reports, and other research, we've been able to identify the leading causes of conflict and collisions between bicyclists and buses/ taxis on city streets. From these findings, combined with additional research of other cities' safety programs, we have worked with Muni and the Taxi Commission to design curriculum that will prevent these types of behaviors. Below are listed the behaviors that prevent the major sources of conflict for each of the three groups.
We have been working closely with the Taxi Commission to approve our safety stickers. The Taxi Commission is the body that is responsible for approving all informational material that is placed in or on city taxicabs. The Commission voted on November 25th, 2003 to approve the sticker.