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Bike-Bump Form Helps Cyclists Plan Caltrain Trips; Feeds Transit Agency Useful Data

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— Bicyclists who use Caltrain will soon have an online tool to track bike capacity on trains and let the rail agency know when they need to add bicycle cars. In addition, they'll be able to notify fellow cyclists.

After cycling advocate's requested improvements, Caltrain is introducing a mobile-friendly bike-bump form, powered by Google. Anytime a bicyclist gets booted from a crowded Caltrain bike car, the rider can send that information through the form, to other cyclists and to Caltrain.

"Since 2004, the number of people bringing their bikes on Caltrain has risen 367 percent," said Melissa Balmer with the California Bicycle Coalition. Balmer said Caltrain receives the real-time data on train capacity. "It's going to go out to everyone who is following Caltrain on their Twitter account."

Riders will now know in advance if they've been bumped from a particular train at a certain time, giving them the opportunity to make alternate plans like choosing a different route or catching a later train.

"I have high hopes for this," said Balmer.

The rail agency recently added six bicycle cars.

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