Local man creates unique initiative for bicyclist safety

Posted at 6:28 PM, Jan 28, 2020

According to a new report, bicyclists in California have been experiencing more deadly crashes which has those hitting the road a bit worried.

From 2016 to 2018 the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says 455 cyclists died across the state of California, which translates to around four fatalities per 1,000,000 people.

This is the highest it has been in the last 25 years for any three year period.

"Both cyclists and motorists need to change.," said Anton Nicola, Glass and Nails lead safety instructor.

Nicola created Glass and Nails, a unique initiative that addresses cycling safety.

The program focuses around teaching both cyclists and drivers to be more aware and respectful.

"There is a lot of unseens between what is inside the car versus what the cyclists feels... versus the road they are on versus the environment they are in and the speed they are going," said Nicola.

For Nicola, educating cyclists and drivers on what each others realities are is paramount.

Simple things such as hand gestures and eye contact can go a long way, but also remembering to give everyone enough space.

According to the California Department of Public Health, six cyclists losts their lives to traffic incidents in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties in 2016 and 2017.

Colin Patterson works at Foothill Cyclery and said they have been doing their part to keep riders safe.

"We are getting more and more people out there with lights and the correct gear to help them be more noticeable... but again at the same time it is both drivers not paying attention or some cyclists just not aware of the correct and safe way to be in traffic," said Patterson.

Nicola said his Glass and Nails initiative will consist of cyclists wearing special vests when they complete the program.

"This is the cool kids club. Anyone who is wearing this jersey... cars can feel comfortable that they have been through this course or that they understand the concept of driver cyclist connection," said Nicola.

Nicola said he named is initiative Glass and Nails to remind people that cyclists ride closer to the white line on the road because they do not want to get a flat tire from things such as glass and nails. To learn more about Glass and Nails click here.