In an effort to make our streets and Pittsburgh’s bicyclists a bit safer, BikePGH partnered with Carnegie Mellon University on a targeted bike light giveaway last night, November 8, 2012, in Oakland. The pop-up event was a great success. “It gets dark so early this time of year,” said Jane Kaminski, membership & outreach assistant for BikePGH, “people who were previously riding in daylight are now riding at dusk or dark without knowing that they cannot be seen.” Many enthusiastic thank-yous were received from the light recipients, and voices were heard saying, “This is like Christmas,” “I haven’t felt safe riding at night without lights,” and “What an awesome day.”
The light giveaway effort, which BikePGH started in Fall of 2011, sets out to specifically target people riding bikes without lights. We pop-up someplace unannounced, and then our fantastic volunteers flag down the near-invisible bikers with the call of “free bike lights!” bringing excitement to many. Lights are not given to people who show up on foot or on bikes that already have lights on them. Planet Bike extended a discount to BikePGH that made this program possible. “Planet Bike has generously supported us since we began this program over a year ago, making it possible to distribute hundreds of bike lights in our community,” stated Scott Bricker, executive director of BikePGH.
If you missed the opportunity to get a free light last night, BikePGH encourages you to use your membership discount at a local bike shop to buy a set.
- 63 sets of front and rear bicycle lights (63 white front lights, 63 red rear lights =126 lights);
- Over 60 bicyclists now fully lit who weren’t previously;
- 95 percent of those who received lights are students;
- Dozens of Pittsburgh Bike Maps, Bike Commuting 101 guides, and other street safety information was distributed, educating bicyclists on the best routes, rules of the road, and helpful hints about biking in Pittsburgh;
- Since Fall 2011 BikePGH has given away nearly 200 sets of lights (~400 lights) to bicyclists in need of them.
Not a member of BikePGH? Please join today! Bike Pittsburgh is transforming our streets and communities into vibrant, healthy places by making them safe and accessible for everyone to bike and walk. For more info, visit: www.bike-pgh.org/membership
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