Last Wednesday, May 2, 2012, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously voted to approve a “motion aimed at outlawing recess skateboarding or “bombing,”” drafting a speed limit ordinance for skateboarders designed to prevent them from exceeding 25 mph.
The proposal is aimed to address a dangerous new skateboarding trend called “hill bombing” or “bombing.” Hill bombing is when skateboarders race down hills at high speeds, sometimes while weaving in and out of traffic and neglecting traffic laws, often at speeds surpassing 40 mph.
The proposal was initiated by the council’s newest member, Joe Buscaino, in response to the death of two skateboarders over the last year. In the last six months, two teenagers have died in San Pedro due to injuries sustained while “bombing.” The new skateboarding speed limit will resemble an existing speed limit on bicycles.
“There’s no brakes on these things,” said Los Angeles City Councilman Mitchell Englander to KABC, a local ABC affiliate. Skateboarders “lose control, and they die or worse, end up as vegetables, brain dead,” he continued.
The ordinance would essentially require skateboarders to follow the rules of the road, including stop signs and traffic signals, and impose a speed limit of 25 miles per hour. Councilman Richard Alarcon also suggested an amending motion asking the departments of transportation and public works to brainstorm ways to structurally prevent hill-bombing on city streets and sidewalks.
Skateboarders, what do you think? Do you feel it is a violation of rights or a means of protecting you?