SF Bicycle Coalition and SFMTA team up for “Light Up the Night,” a campaign to distribute free bike lights/ increase safety and visibility of people biking.
SAN FRANCISCO—Coinciding with the end of Daylight Savings Time, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency are teaming up for their annual “Light up the Night” citywide campaign to distribute and install free bike lights to those riding without them.
Starting on November 8, and continuing through December 13, SFMTA and SF Bicycle Coalition staff and volunteers will be distributing bike lights at “Light up the Night” stations throughout the city. Stations will be set up along bike routes during evening rush hour, between 5 and 7pm, when bicycle commuter traffic is heaviest and the greatest number of riders can be reached.
“With 71% more people biking in San Francisco today than five years ago, it’s clear that bicycling is booming in San Francisco. We’re thrilled to see bike lanes across the city filled with moms biking with kids, business people biking to work and older people commuting around town,” said Leah Shahum, Executive Director of the 12,000-member San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. “The ‘Light up the Night’ campaign is a great way to ensure that all of these new and experienced bicycle commuters are safe and visible during the darkest time of the year.”
“Getting these lights on bikes makes our streets safer for all users. Use of these lights is required by law, and through partnerships like this one, we are working to ensure bicyclists understand and follow all traffic laws,” said Edward D. Reiskin, SFMTA Director of Transportation. “Doing so will help to increase safety for all roadway users and increase bicycle ridership and our continued efforts to a more sustainable San Francisco.”
California law requires that riders use a white front light and rear red light or reflector at night, and that the lights are visible from 300-feet. This year’s “Light up the Night” lights are brighter than ever, with 5 LED lights on the front and multiple blinking settings on the back. Trained SF Bicycle Coalition, SFMTA and San Francisco Police Department staff and volunteers will install the lights on bikes.
In addition to distributing free bike lights, “Light up the Night” is an opportunity to provide key bicycle safety information and rules of the road to bike riders throughout the city. Each of the stations will include safety information and rules of the road in English, Spanish and Chinese. There will be a bilingual Spanish/English station on November 15 in the Mission District.
The annual “Light up the Night” campaign is just one of many safety programs and safety outreach the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition offers throughout the year. In 2011, the Coalition taught 2,300 adults and youth in their free in-class and on-road bicycle education classes. In 2012, they expanded the education classes to include teaching all new Muni drivers and taxi drivers in San Francisco how to safely share the street with people on bike.
Through their safety materials, the SF Bicycle Coalition has reached tens of thousands of people with our multi-language Rules of the Road tip sheet (English, Cantonese, Spanish), helping ensure that the growing number of people biking do so legally and lawfully.
In an effort to ensure the lights go to those who truly need them, locations of “Light up the Night” stations will be kept secret. If you would like to attend an event, please contact Kristin Smith or Leah Shahum for exact locations and times.
Photos of previous “Light up the Night” events are available on the SF Bicycle Coalition’s Flickr page. Please credit San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.