Thursday, March 23 , 2017, 8:43 am | Fair 51º


Local News

Fiesta Cruiser Ride Draws Fewer Cyclists, Citations

Riders mostly comply with traffic laws amid increased police presence

The annual Fiesta Cruiser Ride that floods the streets of Santa Barbara at the end of Old Spanish Days was well-behaved on Sunday, with 3,500 bicyclists mostly complying with traffic laws, according to Santa Barbara police.

The unsanctioned ride has been part of the Fiesta tradition for years, with riders heading from the Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara to Isla Vista and back.

There were 24 bicycle-related citations handed out this year, mostly for failing to stop for a red signal light, police Sgt. Riley Harwood said.

It’s the lowest number of citations since police stepped up enforcement for the ride, and the ride to Goleta Beach and back was uneventful, according to traffic supervisor Sgt. Mike McGrew.

The estimated 3,500 participants was about 1,500 fewer than last year, most likely due to the small amount of rain on Sunday, Harwood said. This year’s ride started around noon.

As the ride accumulated more participants over recent years, police received more complaints about riders blocking traffic, drinking alcohol, and ignoring right-of-way laws.

Police assigned more officers for enforcement and handed out 76 citations last year, including municipal-code violations for open containers.

Noozhawk news editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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