Jay Leno will return as the Grand Marshal of the 29th Anniversary of the Harley-Davidson Love Ride on Sunday, Oct. 21, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Castaic Lake. This year’s Love Ride will benefit the USO which provides critical support and morale boosting programs and services to troops, military families, wounded, ill and injured, and their families, and the families of the fallen. The Love Ride is the longest-running motorcycle fundraising event in the world and has raised $24 million for charity in 28 years. The Love Ride was founded in 1984 by Oliver Shokouh, the owner of Harley-Davidson of Glendale.

In past years, the Love Ride has drawn as many as 18,000 motorcycle riders and guests to the Santa Clarita Valley, specifically the Castaic area. With that many people on motorcycles visiting our great city and valley it is important to remember these driver safety tips:

* Motorcycles are vehicles with the same rights and privileges as any motor vehicle on the roadway.

* Approximately one-half of all motorcycle crashes involve another motor vehicle. Nearly 40 percent of those crashes were caused by the other vehicle turning left in front of the motorcyclist.

* Expect to see motorcycles at any time, and search frequently for them.

* Check your mirrors and blind spot before merging or changing lanes, especially in heavy traffic. A motorcycle can easily be hidden behind a car or truck.

It’s important to remember that according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcyclists involved in fatal crashes are more likely to have consumed alcohol than passenger vehicle drivers. Please do not drink and ride! For more drivers’ safety information, please take the time to view this video published by the California DMV.

While enjoying the festivities it is easy to forget that there are thieves always looking for an easy opportunity to ruin your weekend. Please don’t forget to practice these habits to protect yourself from vehicle burglary, motorcycle theft, and other property crimes:

  • Remove all belongings from the passenger compartment of your car BEFORE you park. Placing things in the trunk while in the parking lot just tells the crook where to find them.
  • Carry purses on shoulders and zipped. Men, place wallets in front pockets. Pickpocketing rises during large concert type events.
  • Lock your car or motorcycle, and always remember to secure locking saddlebags when leaving your motorcycle parked.
  • Lock your motorcycle disks with motorcycle disk locks. Disk locks come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and features and they are more compact than wheel locks. Disk locks are attached to the disk brake rotor to prevent the wheel from rolling.

Captain Becker has deployed our station’s Special Assignment Team (SAT), along with members of our station’s Crime Prevention Unit (CPU) to work closely with patrol deputies from both the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriffs Station and Parks Bureau. These extra deputies will be on patrol throughout the Santa Clarita Valley starting today and lasting throughout the weekend. It is our goal to provide residents and guests to the Santa Clarita Valley a fun and safe weekend as they enjoy this event.

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