Lt. Welch tickets Denair Dispatch reporter Ramona Launius for speeding on her bicycle, and not wearing a helmet.


Reporter Caught Speeding


Ramona Launius


In thinking about the continual rise in the cost of gas these days and the fact that I do a lot of traveling in and around Denair, I decided that maybe I needed a more economical form of transportation. Sorry Bob, but a motorcycle just isn't quite ready for me yet or should I say that I'm not quite ready for a motorcycle.

A bicycle seemed like a possibility, so I proceeded to investigate what was out there, keeping in mind I hadn't ridden a bicycle for about 60 years.

Well, the bicycle has had a few changes over the years...The gadgets, i.e., brake handles, gears and speedometers, even something to measure your heart rate. I knew then that I wasn't ready for a bicycle either.

I had just about given up the idea when it was suggested I check out the "adult 3 wheel bicycle." Sounded like that might work. Well the cost of most of them made gas look cheap. But I finally found a brand new one at a reasonable price and it was just the right size.

So that I might get use to handling the "3 wheeler" I practiced for days in our driveway, making turns, backing up and getting on and off. Finally the day came when I decided to try to navigate the bustling streets of Denair. I'm sure that most bike riders will tell you Monte Vista Avenue does not have an easy surface to ride on. I felt like I was riding lop-sided to the right. However, all the cars that passed me as I tooled down the road took a wide swing to the left of me. I finally began to think that I was doing all right and this wasn't such a bad idea after all.

At the Monte Vista/Fresno Avenue I made the legal stop, in fact I pushed the bike through the cross walk and then got on my "3 wheeler" again. I was really making progress! Just as I was about to reach the Fresno/Main Street intersection I heard the sound of a siren approaching behind me and a sense of a flashing red light. Well, would you ever believe that these signals were meant for me to "pull over"? So I pulled over wondering what ever could I have done to warrant this action. Just like in the movies, a well dressed but stern looking Lt. Welch approached me with the question, "Are you in a hurry, going to a fire maybe?" Let's face old lady on a "3 wheeler" sure can't get to a fire very fast. The Lt. advised me that I had been seen speeding on Monte Vista and again on Fresno Avenue and I was not wearing a helmet. To make matters worse he pointed out that as a retired CHP employee and a member of the Sheriffs STARS I should be above breaking the law. He wrote me a ticket for breaking the law and advised me to slow down. Well, I slowed down so much it took me an hour to get home, and I'm still giving consideration to whether or not the cost of gas is too high. (April 5, 2000).