The Department of DIY, Los Angeles

posted by Fabio on 2010.07.29, under Uncategorized

Some months ago people started noticing around LA many “Caution: Please Pass With Care” signs with a bicycle on them, in a explicit prayer to watch your back from the dense traffic around those spots. We found out who’s the people behind those actions via Freshjive’s blog “Worlds got problems”, and discovered a group of guerrilla citizen-artists who call themselves “The Department of DIY”. I dont know why but, especially nowadays, in this “era of communication”, i still consider very important and somehow seriously groundbreaking the simple fact that people has the chance to cooperate and work together for the good of the community. This is a very bright example.
Here’s a video about them:

Here you can read their manifesto:

The Department of D.I.Y. is a vast group of concerned cyclists and commuters living in Los Angeles some of whom are victims of road rage, hit and runs and / or harassment, many of whom feel that motorists do not fully respect their rights to use our common streets, all of whom wish for a safer more amicable relationship with motor vehicle traffic.

Because this beloved city of Los Angeles can’t, won’t or doesn’t care about the safety of vulnerable road users, the Department of D.I.Y. aims to make a broad appeal to drivers via the campaign. The message “Please Pass With Care” is not intended to be political, nor is it intended to criticize the driver’s choice of transportation mode, it is a simple message of empathy. It is an honest straight forward appeal to drivers to give bicycle riders a brake, some room on the road, and some common human respect. The lives of cyclists are literally in their hands.

Everywhere people drive cars.

The sooner that the message gets out the better. A lot of blood has been spilled in the streets. Every week that goes by, another hit and run, or another close call, or another chilling case of harassment occurs. This can not be tolerated.

This public appeal is to be spread in a respectful manner in the public space with maximum visibility to drivers.