A plan to create permanent roadside memorial signs at the locations of fatal bicycle crashes was unanimously approved Friday by the Los Angeles City Council.
According to Councilman Bob Blumenfield, in the immediate aftermath of a traffic fatality, family members and loved ones frequently establish temporary roadside memorials, including “ghost bikes” placed at the site of fatal bicycle crashes, but the city until now did not have a policy or program for establishing permanent roadside memorials.
“I’ve been to too many ghost bike memorials only to see them gone in a few days, as if nothing tragic happened,” Blumenfield said. “Cyclists are dying on the streets of Los Angeles and creating a permanent memorial — which will also serve as a reminder to share the road — is needed.”
In 2018, 240 people died from traffic crashes in the city of Los Angeles, including 21 bicyclists, Blumenfield’s office said.
For bicyclist fatalities, the memorials sign will include a safety message, a bike symbol and the name of the traffic victim. Signs may be placed at the request of, or with the consent of, an immediate family member, Blumenfield’s office said.
Though the program is initially limited to bicyclist fatalities, the City Council also voted to explore the feasibility and cost of including in the program pedestrians and other related deaths.