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Goleta Promotes E-Bike Safety & Brain Injury Awareness Week

GOLETA, California — The City of Goleta officially inaugurated E-Bike Safety Awareness Week on January 16, 2024, as declared by the Goleta City Council. In a concerted effort to promote safe electric bicycle practices, the Council unveiled an informative e-bike safety tips video as part of the initiative.

Mayor Paula Perotte formally presented the proclamation, emphasizing the increased risks posed by electric bicycles due to their greater weight and speed compared to standard bicycles. She noted, “Without proper safety education and training, e-bike riders face a higher risk of severe injuries or fatalities in the event of a crash.

Kim Stanley-Zimmerman from MOVE Santa Barbara County accepted the proclamation, highlighting the numerous benefits of e-bike use, such as reducing traffic congestion, parking demand, and air pollution. She expressed enthusiasm about more people embracing e-bikes and emphasized their commitment to enhancing community safety during E-Bike Safety Awareness Week.

In alignment with the State of California’s e-bike safety laws, riders 17 years of age and under are mandated to wear helmets at all times. While this regulation applies to a specific age group, it’s strongly recommended that e-bike riders of all ages prioritize helmet use.

Lauren Sutherlin, Trauma Nurse Coordinator at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital, stressed the crucial role of helmet use in preventing injuries, irrespective of age. She remarked, “Practicing bike safety precautions, especially wearing a helmet, is essential to preventing or minimizing injury. Given the higher speeds associated with e-bikes, a properly fitting helmet significantly reduces the risk of serious head and brain injuries in the case of a fall or collision.

According to the California Highway Patrol, statistics from 2022 revealed over 9,600 bicycle-involved crashes in the state. Of these, 225 incidents involved e-bikes, marking a notable increase from the previous year. Tragically, four of these e-bike-related crashes resulted in fatal brain injuries. The launch of E-Bike Safety Awareness Week seeks to address these concerning trends and foster a safer environment for e-bike riders in the City of Goleta.

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