Chico Police cracking down on bike safety

Feb 12, 2014 6:36 PM

On a street corner near Chico State University, Chico Police collision investigator Mike DiGiordano watched as multiple bicyclists and skateboarders flew through stop signs, ignored red lights and went the wrong way down one-way streets.

“Is that a two-way street,” DiGiordano asked a young man rhetorically who was riding skateboard against traffic. “Let’s say this dark colored car pulls out and you swing out into the street and he doesn’t see you.”

“Then,” the young man said while rolling his eyes, “I guess I messed up to the point where I'm dead.”

And this is what Chico Police are trying to prevent.

DiGiordano says he’s seen multiple bicycle-related accidents in his tenure with the Chico Police Department—some not so bad; others deadly.

During the interview with Action News Now, DiGiordano received a call of a bike-versus-car accident near Pleasant Valley High School.

Turns out the bicyclist was cutting through the Safeway parking lot and crashed into a car, shattering the windshield.

The bicyclist refused medical treatment and escaped with just a few scratches. But not everyone is as lucky.

To reduce such accidents, Chico Police is partnering with Chico VELO to help make bicyclists more visible after dusk with a program called “Light Up the Night.”

“This can be seen from the sides and it can be seen from length at a distance,” DiGiordano said, holding one of the bicycle lights that will be passed out for free to those that qualify. “It's a very bright light. This is going to save lives.”


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