Morning Links: No lawsuit in Piven dooring, Brandt-Sorenson gets slap on wrist, and Russian road rage abduction

In a surreal LA moment, the bike rider injured in a dooring by actor Jeremy Piven says he recognized the actor as he was falling to the pavement.

Surprisingly, though, the victim says he’s not going to sue because Piven was so helpful after the crash.

Although that may change once a lawyer explains the concept of “deep pockets.”

………

His attorney may call it a “significant sentence,” but LA cyclist Nick Brandt-Sorenson, aka Thorfinn-Sassquatch, barely got a caress on the wrist at his sentencing for selling performance-enhancing drugs over the internet.

He could have been sentenced to up to a year in prison, but instead received just three years probation and a $5,000 fine, along 300 hours of community service.

Yes, that’s a lot of time in an orange vest picking up trash. But if he keeps his nose clean, he won’t spend a single day behind bars.

And he gets to keep all his Strava KOMs.

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Caught on video: The question is, just what the hell is going on, after what appears to be a road rage assault on a Russian cyclist ends with the attackers being abducted by masked gunmen. Thanks to David Wolfberg for the heads-up.

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The Cannibal says Chris Froome can’t be beaten in this year’s Tour de France.

Bicycling examines a day in the life of a Tour de France cyclist, while Cycling Weekly looks at five super-domestiques who have delivered for their team leaders during the Tour. Bora-Argon 18 rider Shane Archbold withdrew with a broken pelvis after a high-speed fall on Wednesday, but finished the stage before realizing he was injured.

Nineteen-year old Chloe Dygert has been tapped to round out the US women’s pursuit team after winning the junior road race and time trial at last year’s worlds. US time trial champ Taylor Phinney will represent the men after his amazing comeback from a devastating injury.

And here’s a step-by-step guide to get into women’s road racing, so you can compete in the 2020 Olympics. Unless you’re not a woman, of course.

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Local

EGP News offers a reminder that a one-mile stretch of the LA River bike path near the Griffith Park Zoo will remain closed for construction for the next three years.

Pasadena has received a $3 million Metro grant to build a two-way cycle track on Union Street, the first of ten planned bicycle corridors through the city.

A Wisconsin couple made it to Santa Monica after riding 2,600 miles across the US on a tandem.

Streetsblog affiliate Santa Monica Next will host a fundraising cocktail party on Saturday, July 30th.

Santa Clarita suffered a net loss of $132,000 in hosting a stage of the Amgen Tour of California this year; however, a study of the 2008 ToC showed the race generated a $1.9 million economic impact for the local area, which this year’s race probably exceeded.

 

State

The San Diego Union Tribune says the city’s bikeshare program could use a push, but no public subsidies. So billions of dollars to subsidize motor vehicles is okay, but a few million to help get people out of their cars isn’t.

A Fontana cop discusses how cars and bikes can share the road. And gets it right.

Goleta votes to build a one-mile median-protected bike lane, replacing an existing painted lane.

Caltrans recommends lowering the speed limit by 5 mph near a Lompoc homeless shelter where a man was killed earlier this year. Although chances are, he’d be just as dead if he’d been hit at 50 mph as he was at 55 mph.

A bighearted Salinas cop splits the cost of a new bike with the local Walmart to replace one stolen from a young man who volunteers with foster children.

 

National

Streetsblog calls the GOP Transportation Platform a disaster, including a plank to eliminate all funding for transit and active transportation.

A new mini-bike trailer sleeps four and unfolds in minutes. Thanks to Michael Eisenberg for the heads-up.

A Seattle hospital gets multiple sclerosis patients out on adaptive bicycles, sometimes for the first time in years.

Tucson develops a master plan for a network of bike boulevards through 63 residential corridors. LA has a mobility plan calling for the same thing, but that doesn’t mean they’ll actually build it.

A ghost bike was installed at the Idaho site where a Bike and Build rider was killed recently. Although the local press oddly called it an Angel Bike; maybe they don’t believe in ghosts.

A Wisconsin writer recalls a 250-mile bike trip across the state in the ‘70s, which could have ended badly except for the kindness of a stranger.

The FBI has joined the search for an Ohio college student who went missing Tuesday night; her bike was found in a cornfield later that night.

A trio of Vermont teenagers will ride 500 miles to raise funds to fight Duchenne muscular dystrophy; they’ve already raised $15,000 in pledges before starting their ride. A subject close to my heart; the son of a long-time friend is battling Duchennes.

The owner of North Carolina’s First Flight Bicycles, as well as the Mountain Goat Cycles brand, was killed by a drunk driver Wednesday while walking across a street.

 

International

The Canadian resort town of Banff is lowering speed limits and building a short, two-way bicycling greenway to improve safety and encourage more transportation riding.

For a change, the British press is justifiably appalled when a salmon cyclist jumped a red light with his nine-year old son on his handlebars.

Life is cheap in Wales, where a tractor driver was fined a whopping £80 — the equivalent of $105 — for killing a 72-year old bike rider.

A new $3,500 Italian smart bike features a 96-decible horn that’s as loud as some train whistles. Which has to be as painful to the person using it as it is to everyone within earshot.

A Kiwi truck driver was convicted of killing a bike rider for the second time in less than 10 years. Let’s hope the court gets him off the road before he goes for three.

 

Finally…

Evidently, bears really are out to get us. If you’re going to rob a bank, wear a helmet, but don’t ditch your getaway bike; unless maybe it wasn’t yours to begin with, of course.

And this is what you’d look like if humans had evolved to survive car crashes.

 

Morning Links: Actor doors bike rider, PCH cyclist seriously injured in Malibu crash, and the science of bicycling

Did an actor get special treatment from the LAPD?

In a story that seems to have made news everywhere — except right here in Los Angeles — actor Jeremy Piven allegedly doored a bike rider when he flung his car door open without looking after parking his Cadillac near the Grove.

Yet despite the rider suffering a serious chest injury, Piven escaped without so much as a ticket because the police didn’t see it happen.

Even though CVC 22517 makes it clear that it is the driver’s responsibility to open a door only when it is safe to do so.

No person shall open the door of a vehicle on the side available to moving traffic unless it is reasonably safe to do so and can be done without interfering with the movement of such traffic, nor shall any person leave a door open on the side of a vehicle available to moving traffic for a period of time longer than necessary to load or unload passengers.

Which means that if the rider was hit by the door, the driver was at fault.

Whether or not anyone saw it.

………

A bicyclist suffered major injuries in a crash on PCH in West Malibu Wednesday afternoon; the rider reportedly lost control and swerved into the path of a pickup in the northbound traffic lane. Thanks to James Johnson for the heads-up.

………

Great piece from Scientific American relates the story of the researcher who finally unlocked the secrets of why a bicycle remains upright and able to balance itself even without a rider; next on his agenda is trying to solve the terrifying speed wobble.

Meanwhile, physics suggests that stopping and starting with both feet on the pedals is more efficient than pushing off with your foot.

………

A Chinese bike rider somehow miraculously dodges a barrel-rolling van.

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Twenty-four-year old Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe is making an impact at the Tour de France, while Nairo Quintana is unexpectedly struggling. Five riders could still make the podium in Paris, but no matter what happens behind him, Froome seems to keep his hold on the yellow jersey.

America’s only remaining Tour de France winner says claims that Froome’s Team Sky is dominating the race thanks to marginal gains is “bollocks.”

Peter Sagan will be the world’s best paid pro cyclist after jumping teams next year; he’s reportedly earn $6.6 million. He’s worth it in movie take-off videos alone.

………

Local

Investing in Place calls Metro’s upcoming transportation ballot measure a huge leap for walking and biking in Los Angeles County, while recapping just what advocates were able to win in negotiations over the measure.

Streetsblog interviews CicLAvia Executive Director Romel Pascual.

KPCC examines whether it’s better to ride a bike or drive in polluted air.

CiclaValley reminds us that the annual Tour de Laemmle rolls this Sunday.

An employee with the LADOT Bikeways Program describes her multimodal commute to work.

LA cyclist Nick Brandt-Sorenson, aka Strava’s Thorfinn-Sassquatch, was due to be sentenced Wednesday to up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine for peddling performance-enhancing drugs, just days after receiving a lifetime ban from US cycling’s governing body.

The Daily News says you’re a step closer to being able to ride your bike from Canoga Park to Griffith Park. Only one of which actually is one.

 

State

Bikeshare and ebikes factor into California’s aggressive zero emissions goals.

New bike lanes are planned for West Newport Beach, along with improvements to sidewalks and landscaping to encourage people to walk and bike.

Garden Grove’s draft Active Transportation Plan envisions a city where cars, bikes and pedestrians can move in harmony.

Authorities say 25-year old Zachariah Doll was wearing dark clothing, had no lights or reflectors on his bike and was riding salmon when he was killed in an early morning collision in the Riverside County town of Winchester last week.

A San Francisco survey shows most drivers want protected bike lanes, too.

Calbike is hiring a Communications Director to work in their Oakland office.

Pleasanton cyclists call on the city to improve a dangerous intersection where a 72-year old woman was killed recently while riding in the crosswalk.

Redding police arrest a junkie bank robber who tried to make his escape by BMX bike.

 

National

A new report from NACTO says that as cities build bike infrastructure, the rate of bicycling goes up while the risk to riders goes down.

If you build it, they will come. A real estate website says the belief that Millennials are eschewing suburbs ain’t necessarily so — as long as those suburbs have good sidewalks and bike lanes.

An 81-year old Denver driver who kept driving after fatally striking a 14-year old boy standing in a bike lane was still allowed to behind the wheel despite a previous hit-and-run last year — even though family members promised she wouldn’t drive anymore. It’s up to family members to keep older drivers off the road when they can no longer drive safely, since the government is unable, or unwilling, to do it.

Apparently, a Dallas bank was robbed by a bike-riding pirate.

Apparently taking a cue from Donald Trump, Skokie IL will allow residents to build fences up to ten feet high along a new bike path. No word on whether Mexico will pay for it, however.

Atlantic City police arrested an alleged serial hit-and-run driver for DUI after he crashed into a street sign, followed by a cyclist, followed by a car, before finally coming to rest after striking a toll booth. Fortunately, the bike rider only suffered bruises; no word on whether the sign, car and toll booth survived.

A New York driver faces 136 years behind bars for killing one man and injuring two others when he smashed into a business at 50 mph while high on meth; a bike rider was also injured by flying debris.

When Charleston SC approves a controversial bike lane over a local bridge, the local paper approves of their approval.

Bighearted Alabama cops buy a new bicycle for a child after he unintentionally bought a stolen bike with his $7 allowance.

Only 850 miles of the planned 3,000-mile East Coast Greenway are currently ready to ride; plans are for 95% of the off-road bike path to be completed by 2030.

 

International

Bikes are enjoying a renaissance and bridging class barriers in Santiago, Chile.

Vancouver finally rolls out a delayed and truncated bikeshare system, with just 260 of the promised 1,500 bikes currently ready to ride.

Like bikes that pass in the night, a single speed cyclist seeks a fixie rider she met under the Thames.

More anti-bike sabotage in the UK, as someone strung fishing wire neck high over a popular Belfast bike trail.

An Indian computer professor was forced to abandon a long-distance bike tour across the country due to illness after riding 2,200 miles in 23 days.

Singapore becomes the next city to embrace bikeshare with a 1,000-bike system using 100 docking stations.

 

Finally…

Call it Fifty Shades of Bicycles. Don’t ride your bike off a cliff into the ocean, bro.

And if you’re carrying stolen credit cards and a meth pipe on your bike, ride your damn bike on the right side of the road.

Seriously.

Morning Links: LA River Greenway to expand through the Valley, Louisiana lawmaker says don’t play in the street

Good news on the LA River front.

A design firm has been selected to build a bike and pedestrian path along a 12-mile segment of the Los Angeles River in the San Fernando Valley, from Vanalden in the West Valley to Forest Lawn and Zoo Drives in Griffith Park.

Which means, if the seemingly endless series of closures and construction projects finally wrap up, you’ll be able to ride uninterrupted from the West Valley through Elysian Park.

Unfortunately, I haven’t heard any word on when we can expect an extension of the bike path through DTLA and points south, to connect with the pathway leading up from Long Beach.

Meanwhile, you’ll soon be able to combine bikes, bagels and beer on the newly re-opened segment of the LA River bike path in Frogtown.

………

This is the sort of attitude we have to deal with.

A Louisiana state legislator actually said “If you don’t want to overdose, don’t do drugs. If you don’t want to get hit by a car, don’t play in the street,” in quashing the state’s proposed vulnerable user law, out of fear his constituents could go to jail for “accidently” killing someone.

‘Cause you know, these things just happen, right?

Then again, this is the same public servant who tried to pass a law prohibiting strippers from being too fat or too old, then claimed it was just a joke.

Apparently, so is he.

………

Mark Cavendish has pulled out of the Tour de France in order to focus on the Rio Olympics.

Two-time Tour runner-up Nairo Quintana faces his last chance to overtake leader Chris Froome as the race enters the Alps, while second-place Nairo Quintana has been in this position before.

If you can’t shave any more weight off the bike, shave a few seconds off your time with a 3D-printed skinsuit.

And women’s cycling is taking a big step forward with the creation of the first all-black African women’s cycling team.

………

Local

The Source’s Steve Hyman demonstrates remarkable restraint when an impatient driver tells him to get on the sidewalk as he rides on Cordova Street — while riding in a bike lane, no less.

Downtown News says DTLA’s new Metro Bike bikeshare system is better late than never; over 1,600 people bought passes by the end of the first week.

KPCC wants to know what traffic laws should be enforced more vigorously, including violations by those darn scofflaw cyclists. Remarkably, they include cars driving below the speed limit, which isn’t against the law, but fail to include speeding, which is.

 

State

Eighty-five year old Apple Valley cyclist and community advocate Chuck Hanson passed away from cancer over the weekend; he had ridden nearly half a million miles over his lifetime.

Apparently, the San Francisco DA takes traffic crime seriously. A 19-year old man has been charged with murder in the hit-and run death of a bike rider while driving a stolen car last month. He faces additional charges of vehicular manslaughter, hit-and-run and auto burglary, and is being held on $1 million bail.

A new bike shop, café and social club is due to open in downtown Oakland, serving beer and advocacy without the pressures of a “jerk bike shop.”

A Redding man was able to hold onto his bike when he was attacked by two teenagers while riding on a bike path.

 

National

Portland joins the bikeshare revolution, unveiling a new system with 1,000 smart bikes at 100 stations.

Great idea. A Wichita KS program will donate bikes recovered by the police to provide homeless people with a form of transportation.

Life is cheap in Nebraska, where a careless driver gets a whopping 30 days in jail and a $100 fine for killing a bike rider.

Cleveland is using bike cops to keep the peace at this week’s Republican National Convention.

A Wisconsin writer learns the hard way that no one is impervious to injury, as he describes firsthand what it’s like to break your collarbone falling off your bike.

A Minnesota family finally finds closure as the hit-and-run driver who killed a 24-year old woman as she rode a bike has been sentenced to 39 months in prison.

Michigan proposes a five-foot passing law in the wake of the Kalamazoo massacre.

Massachusetts considers a bill that would make it illegal to park in bike lanes statewide.

Philadelphia police are looking for a mountain bike-riding man who has violently attacked three prostitutes, killing one.

 

International

A sports psychologist explains how to tell if you’re addicted to cycling.

A new Brazilian study says 72 hours may not be long enough for your body to recover from an 80-mile race. And yet professional cyclists are expect to compete on much longer routes every day, with no recovery time.

A Vancouver planning consultant says the way to reign in those annoying scofflaw cyclists is to make bike couriers ride three-speed upright bikes. No, really.

Also in Vancouver, a writer says it doesn’t look right when a Nigerian-Canadian bike rider is detained by six police officers for over an hour, apparently for the crime of riding on the sidewalk while black.

A ten-year old British hit-and-run victim asks how anyone could just leave him lying in the street.

Caught on video: A London cyclist suffers the equivalent of a left cross, hit-and-run crash the first time he used his new GoPro.

A proposed five and a half mile protected bike lane would run under a bridge to connect East and West Berlin.

Now that’s more like it. An Aussie telecom company is offering employees $1,000 to buy the bicycle of their choice and ride it to work. Thanks to David Wolfberg for the heads-up.

The General-Secretary of Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party, who also serves as chair of the Japan Cycling Association, was injured while riding his bicycle on Saturday; official reports are he was just slightly injured, but other sources say his injuries may be serious.

 

Finally…

The way to improve safety is to tame motor vehicle traffic, not helmets that turn bicyclists into hi-viz mini-cars. The Tron-inspired spokeless bicycle has met its Kickstarter goal, but no, it is not the future of bicycling.

And it’s one thing to promote veganism by riding your bike, another to break all the rules doing it. Seriously, Strava only encourages you to ride like a jackass; it’s your fault if you actually do.

 

Morning Links: Bad guys on bikes, a South LA primer for bike advocates, and don’t walk through a bike race, bro

Today’s common theme is bad guys on bikes.

Social media helps flush out a repeat shoplifter who tried to make his getaway by bicycle after stealing a number of U-locks from a San Pedro hardware store, and getting in a fight with the owner.

An attentive neighbor scares off a bike-riding package thief in San Diego.

It takes a seriously sick schmuck to stick a gun in the face of a nine-year old boy to steal his bicycle, then ride it to rob a Connecticut store.

A Florida man rode his bike to a local hospital, walked in through the emergency room, then wandered up to the third floor and fatally shot two people at random.

The Baton Rouge gunman was one of us, as a neighbor says there was nothing unusual about him, other than tearing through the neighborhood on a mountain bike.

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The peloton and staff of the Tour de France pay tribute to the great Fabian Cancellara in his final Tour. Peter Sagan may not win every race, but the Associated Press says he can win any way he wants to. Like this, for instance.

Bon Appetit explains, in case you’ve ever wondered, what pro cyclists eat on the bike to get them through each stage.

Boise’s Kristin Armstrong is in the running for her third gold medal at the Rio Olympics next month.

A new report shows Russia covered up 580 positive dope tests, including 26 involving cyclists. That’s all?

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Local

Streetsblog’s Sahra Sulaiman and Malcolm Harris of TRUST South LA discuss what bike advocates need to understand about South Central LA.

CiclaValley gets down and dirty at the LA Roubaix. And likes it.

 

State

Riverside is asking the public what they think about the 2.5 mile Brockton Ave bike lanes. Be sure to give your input if you ride in the area, because you know the bike haters will.

A San Bernardino man is in critical condition after being shot in a drive-by while riding his bike.

A new San Francisco study shows both drivers and cyclists prefer streets with separated bike lanes.

Sudwerk Brewing names their latest beer after the monthly Davis Bike Party.

 

National

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) is considering joining their colleagues at NACTO by supporting protected bike lanes in less urban areas.

Utah’s two senators introduce legislation that would allow local managers to determine whether to allow bicycling in Federal wilderness areas, which was the policy prior to 1984.

A man from my hometown modified his cargo bike, which is built to carry up to 500 pounds of beer kegs, to give a lifelong cyclist suffering from ALS a chance to enjoy one last 232-mile ride across the Rockies.

A Cincinnati woman faces up to 17 years in jail after pleading no contest in the drug-fueled death of a bike rider while driving with a suspended license; she reportedly shoved bottles of pills in her bra as she tried to make her getaway.

A bighearted Maine boy is inspiring others by donating a bicycle he won in a reading contest.

A Boston letter writer acknowledges the need for protected bike lanes, but says there’s also a place for non-protected lanes, and too many places with no bike lanes.

A pair of cyclists ride nearly 900 miles, planting trees and raising funds for cancer research in honor of Massachusetts native Johnny Appleseed.

WaPo says stricter driving laws really do work. As long as they’re enforced, anyway.

A New York writer says bicycling infrastructure fails because local community boards have the power to veto lanes in their neighborhoods, resulting in an incomplete network. And police fail to keep the lanes safe.

 

International

Vancouver businesses embrace bicycling, six years after fighting bike lanes tooth-and-nail to preserve on-street parking.

Canadian lawyers complain about the lack of criminal penalties for killer drivers in Quebec.

Caught on video: An East London bike rider was subjected an obscenity-laced tirade from a carful of road raging motorists at 3 am.

Cyclist and royal-in-law Pippa Middleton is getting married. Your invitation probably be coming in the mail.

British cyclists complain about a pointless, six-foot long bike lane.

Once again, anti-bike terrorists have put the lives of others at risk by throwing tacks onto the route of a charity ride. Riders in similar attacks have suffered serious injuries after getting sudden flats while riding at speed.

A US Army reservist will ride 150 miles through Germany to raise funds and awareness for STEM — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — education.

Now that’s more like it. Israel’s legislature considers a law that would require communities to build bike paths for commuters, and require buses and trains to accommodate bicycles.

Caught on video, too: Family members say a 92-year old Australian woman was lucky to survive after a cyclist plowed into her as she stepped into the street. The rider appears distracted, with no hands on the handlebars, but it also looks like the woman may have stepped out into the rider’s path.

 

Finally…

That’s not riot gear at the GOP convention, it’s mountain bike equipment. It could be open season on bike riders, with plans for a rail-to-trail conversion running right through a shooting range.

And caught on video 3: If you’re going to walk in the crosswalk, try not to do it when a bike race is going by.

 

Morning Links: Tour de France enters final week; letter writer says protected lanes may tame scofflaw cyclists

It’s a light news day in the bike world, so let’s get right to it this morning.

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With a week of racing left to go, Chris Froome is tightening his grip on the Tour de France, while saying last-year’s seventh-place finisher Bauke Mollema is his chief rival.

The Guardian says the Tour must adapt to the constant growth in crowd sizes, but a Kiwi rider says fans aren’t the problem, it’s television, security, and the commercial aspects of the race.

Then again, maybe the real problem is wind and rocks.

You know it was a tough stage when half the peloton in the Tour of Poland abandons the race.

Cadel Evans says there will never be another cycling icon like Lance Armstrong. Which in some ways, we can only hope for.

………

Local

Letter writers to the LA Times say protected bike lanes are good for public health, and can be done cheaply with parking protected lanes. Although there’s always one who has to complain about scofflaw cyclists, since evidently, drivers always obey the law.

Rick Risemberg says bikeshare is off to a good start in DTLA, but should have docks at the libraries in Little Tokyo and Chinatown.

Adam Sandler is one of us, as the comedian rides through Brentwood with his family.

Long Beach may install a pair of road diets in the Belmont Shore area to make room for diagonal parking and buffered bike lanes.

 

State

A San Diego grand jury warns the city’s bikeshare program may fail without greater cooperation between the city and transit officials.

The small Imperial County town of Brawley votes to build a network of bike lanes. Most of the story is hidden behind a paywall, however.

The wife of a Cal Poly San Luis Obispo dean was killed when a driver drifted onto the shoulder of a highway, striking her bicycle from behind. Someone should ask the CHP how can there be any question of responsibility when the driver couldn’t even stay in the damn traffic lane?

The Santa Cruz police department launches its own free bike registration program.

Sonoma police are looking for the driver who fled the scene after running down a cyclist from behind, leaving the rider with major injuries. Or maybe not, as since they can’t find any physical evidence of a collision, even though a witness saw it from a distance. A car doesn’t have to actually hit a cyclist to cause a wreck; a close pass can be all it takes. And leaving the scene afterwards is still hit-and-run.

Sacramento discusses allowing bike riders to attend bicycle traffic schools in lieu of a fine, which is now permitted under a new state law. Similar proposals are under discussion in LA, but haven’t gotten very far yet.

 

National

A new study from the National Highway Safety Administration says traffic collisions cost the US $871 billion a year. Money that would be better spent fixing the roads to prevent them in the first place.

Minnesota wheel maker Hed Cycling continues to prosper two years after its founder passed away and his wife took over.

Philadelphia hopes its nine-mile open streets event will set a model for the city. Or maybe not, since CicLAvia has been doing the same thing for nearly six years. And more than just once a year.

Studies show that a bike lane over a Charleston SC bridge could revitalize a depressed neighborhood, but the local councilmember refuses to believe it.

 

International

Tragic news from the UK, as British Olympic gold medalist and leading bike advocate Chris Boardman’s mother was killed in a collision while bicycling in Wales.

A Scottish lawyer says cyclists could benefit by changing the law to introduce a strict liability system, in which drivers are automatically held responsible for hitting a cyclist or pedestrian.

Apparently, all it takes to shut down an international bridge between Sweden and Denmark is a handful of bicyclists. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

 

Finally…

No, a helmet with a built-in cam won’t solve traffic disputes. And if you have to steal a boy’s bicycle to play Pokémon Go, you’re already a loser.

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Thank you to John Hall for his very generous contribution to support this site, and keep SoCal’s best source for bike news coming to you every morning.

 

Weekend Links: Driver charged in death of Ventura teen, Tour de France mourns, and stupid criminal tricks

Five months after he died, Jonathan Hernandez may see partial justice.

The tow truck driver who struck the 14-year old boy and fled the scene, leaving him to die in the street after being hit by a second vehicle, has been charged with felony hit-and-run; he also faces a misdemeanor charge of concealing evidence.

Unfortunately, the second driver, who also fled the scene, has still not been found.

Fifty-one-year old Hermin Martin Henderson pled not guilty to the charges; he faces up to five years in prison if he’s convicted.

Ironically, if he had simply stayed at the scene after the February crash, he probably wouldn’t have faced any charges, since security video showed Hernandez running the red light just before he was struck by Henderson’s truck. Unless he was under the influence, of course.

And Hernandez might still be alive.

Meanwhile, Henderson and his towing company, along with the city and county of Ventura, face a civil suit filed by the victim’s family.

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The Tour de France was in mourning Friday, following the Bastille Day attack in Nice. The race went on under heightened security as the riders competed in the time trial.

Not everyone believes Froome should have kept the yellow jersey after Thursday’s Mt. Ventoux debacle, though.

And the dark side of bike racing gets the HBO treatment, as Andy Samberg plans a mockumentary focusing on doping in the world of professional cycling.

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Local

Metro hopes to spur development of bikeable, walkable communities within a short walk of the Orange Line in the San Fernando Valley.

CiclaValley invites you to come out for LA’s own version of the Hell of the North, at Sunday’s SoCal GRAVEL Trofee #3: LA ROUBAIX v2, starting at Golden Road Brewing.

Disappointing news, as the annual Brentwood Grand Prix bike race won’t be held this year. However, the 55th edition of the Manhattan Beach Grand Prix will roll as scheduled, bringing California’s top racers to SoCal on August 7th. Thanks to Lynn Ingram and David Huntsman for the heads-up.

 

State

Police once again arrest a bike-riding suspect in the attacks on five homeless men in San Diego; a previous suspect was released after police concluded he couldn’t have done it.

A Palomar College English professor wrote a book about the 3,145-mile cross-country bike trip he took between two unrelated bouts of cancer.

Now that’s more like it. San Francisco police throw the book at the accused killer of a bike rider in Golden Gate Park three weeks ago; the 19-year old driver is booked on suspicion of murder, burglary, vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and hit-and-run causing injury or death, as well as two traffic violations .

 

National

The rich get richer, as Portland proposes a complete network of bikeways crisscrossing the city.

A Wisconsin driver wasn’t texting when he swerved onto the shoulder of a highway and slammed into a woman riding her bike; just looking down to read papers as he drove.

A blind, 79-year old Michigan man plans to ride 100 miles to raise funds for breast cancer research by riding stoker on a tandem bike.

The lawyer for the stoned Kalamazoo MI driver who killed five cyclists last month says he never meant to hurt anyone. Oh, well if that’s the case…

Your next ride through a Manhattan park could be underground.

A Charleston SC letter writer aptly notes that the so-called bike lobby is just people looking for a safe place to walk and ride.

New Orleans considers turning several streets into bike boulevards. Something that was supposed to happen here with the network of Bicycle Friendly Streets included in the 2010 Bike Plan, but hasn’t. And from the looks of it, probably won’t.

 

International

A Toronto writer says the conflict between drivers and bike riders will only end “when sharing the road is not seen as a war… and a bicycle is as common a sight on a road as a car.”

Kindhearted Ontario residents pitch in after a disabled man’s three-wheeled ebike was stolen from his backyard.

A new British study suggests that bicycling may be the best way to lose weight.

New Zealand advocacy groups join together to call for Vision Zero in the country, along with a safe, sustainable, healthy and fair transport system for everyone.

It’s official. The world record for riding around the world now belongs to a Kiwi cyclist, with a time of 123 days, one hour and six minutes.

A Chinese man and his dog rode over 43,000 miles through 23 countries in Asia, Europe and North America to promote protection for stray animals, visiting over 100 animal shelters along with way.

 

Finally…

Caught on video: This is why you need to pay attention when you’re riding, or the tabloids will call for your head. No, seriously. if you leave your bike behind when you steal a car, don’t go back to get it the next day.

And if there’s already a warrant out for your arrest, don’t ride you bike to the police station when playing Pokemon Go.

Especially not in your pajamas.

 

Morning Links: SaMo stupid driver trick triptych fixed, jogging up Mt. Ventoux, and WeHo bikeshare opens next month

If you tried to click on the link to Steve Herbert’s triptych of videos showing stupid Santa Monica driver tricks yesterday, only to be told by Facebook that the page doesn’t exist, the problem’s been fixed.

So just give it another try.

………

A bizarre finish to the climb up Mont Ventoux, with winds up to 80 mph, found Tour de France leader Chris Froome running up the mountain — without a bike — after yet another crash caused by a race moto and overly aggressive fans.

This is what the crash looked like up close. LA’s Peter Flax describes the madness leading up to the final scrum, calling the Tour an absurd, beautiful circus.

And Australia’s Simon Gerrans is out of the race after breaking his collarbone when he crashed on a fast descent.

………

Local

Streetsblog offers an update on the state of bikeshare in the LA area; West Hollywood’s system will have a soft launch with just four stations on August 9th, with the full system opening by the end of next month.

Downtown stakeholders are fighting a new development at Fourth and Hill, arguing it’s too tall and modern for the area; on the plus side, the 428-unit apartment building would have more parking for bikes than cars.

A 95-year old bike rider suffered a broken leg and minor head injuries when he was hit by a car just outside West Covina yesterday morning. But the driver said she didn’t see him, so it’s okay, right? And how exactly did kneepads help save his life?

CiclaValley climbs Stough Canyon and the Verdugo Mountains.

 

State

New state rules will allow bikeshare programs to apply for funding to expand into low-income areas.

Happy birthday to Ventura County’s Newberry Park Bicycle Shop, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary.

Sad news from San Luis Obispo, as a woman riding on an Edna Valley highway was killed when a driver drifted onto the shoulder and ran her down from behind.

Fresno unveils a new safety campaign warning drivers to slow down for people.

A Petaluma website says don’t fear the road diet.

A Modesto man faces vehicular manslaughter, hit-and-run and car theft charges in the death of a bike rider last month.

 

National

How to turn your bike into the ultimate Pokemon Go machine.

Bicycling explains how to protect your manly bits and pieces.

A bike-riding boy was not seriously injured when a suspected Nevada bomber blew himself up; the family who lived in the home he targeted somehow escaped before the blast.

Denver’s B-Cycle system illustrates how to not succeed in bikeshare.

A 22-year old Virginia woman riding cross-country with the Bike & Build program was killed when she and another rider were rear-ended by a driver in Idaho; the second victim remains in critical condition.

Two Good Samaritans are honored for saving the life of a bike-riding Texas triathlete who was left for dead by a hit-and-run driver.

A ghost bike for a Michigan hit-and-run victim has been removed from storage in the hope that it will help solve the case.

Boston takes a tiny, tentative step toward traffic safety by installing a parking protected bike lane on the city’s famed Beacon Street. For one whole block.

DC votes unanimously to change a policy that kept bicycles and pedestrians from receiving any settlement at all in most crashes.

Bighearted Georgia police step up to help a young homeless man after learning he’d just ridden a bicycle six hours to register for college.

 

International

A Canadian cyclist calls for making cycling a priority on Prince Edward Island.

Motor vehicles will be banned entirely from London’s busy Oxford Street shopping district within the next four years. I doubt LA leaders would ever have the guts to make a bold move like that; we can’t even get bike lanes on Westwood and North Figueroa.

A boy from the UK saved up for months to buy a second-hand bike, only to have it stolen just two days later. Then got it back — with a letter of apology — after his mother recognized the thieves on security camera footage.

Yet another British bike rider was nearly decapitated by a wire strung over a bike path in what police call a premeditated attack.

There’s more than one way to get a parked bike out of the way.

Caught on video: It takes a kindhearted bike rider to rescue a kitten from a busy Russian intersection.

 

Finally…

Forget carbon; your next bike frame could be made of graphene and weigh less than a pound, or it could be made of wood and full of holes. Or look like something out of Tron.

And this is your brain. This is your brain exercising in the heat.

 

Morning Links: Energizer Bunny says upgrade your bike for a motorcycle, and a SaMo bad driver triptych

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton justifiably takes Energizer Batteries to task for a badly off-base ad in which the Bunny magically converts bicycles into high-powered motorcycles.

In the Energizer commercial’s world, there are lots of cyclists, but all their bikes are old and crappy. One bike, at o:02, has a derailleur but no chain. Few of the bikes actually fit their riders, so the cyclists look cramped and uncomfortable.

Secondly, how does electricity help cyclists? Does transforming a bicycle – a truly environmentally-friendly human-powered vehicle – into a petroleum-burning motorcycle really serve the environment? Do urban cyclists really want to ditch their trusty steeds?

Seriously, the takeaway from Energizer’s misguided ad isn’t that their batteries are good for the environment, but that motorcycles are better than bicycles.

Which is a load of crap.

………

Now that’s more like it.

A Niagara-area town supervisor makes a video supporting his vision of converting an eight-mile parkway into a bikeway.

………

While we’re on a video kick, bike commuter and KCRW sound engineer Steve Herbert posts series of Facebook videos depicting a triptych of Santa Monica drivers who insisted on making his ride to work far more dangerous than it needed to be.

………

The AP says Chris Froome is turning into a master tactician on the bike, although he was outsprinted on Wednesday’s 11th stage of the Tour de France. But seriously, don’t film Mark Cavendish when he’s taking a leak.

Yahoo offers a offers a bizarre report that blames cycling’s doping culture of the of the ‘80s and ‘90s for corrupting East European cyclists — like East Germany’s Jan Ullrich — after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Never mind that the former Soviet Block countries maintained extensive systematic doping programs, which undoubtedly included many, if not all, of their top cyclists. Something that clearly continues today.

As for that doping culture, at least some of it may have been a placebo effect. Although cyclists aren’t the only ones doing it.

And it’s been 49 years since Britain’s Tommy Simpson died while riding up Mont Ventoux, possibly as a result of chasing amphetamines with brandy before the race; the peloton will likely pause to remember him when they climb Ventoux in today’s stage.

………

Local

The Milt Olin Foundation, started by the wife of the fallen cyclist, has launched the #HandsOff app to encourage drivers to pledge not to use their phones behind the wheel. The sheriff’s deputy who killed Olin on Mulholland Highway in 2013 had been texting with his wife, and was using the patrol car’s onboard computer at the time of the crash.

KCET rides the LA River bike path with the Senior Lead Officers from the LAPD’s Northeast Division, helping bust a bike thief in the process.

New Malibu Mayor Lou La Monte is promising to improve safety on PCH, such as implementing some of the 130 suggested improvements listed in the recently completed the PCH Safety Study, including proposed bike lanes.

Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson reports from Tuesday’s Palos Verdes Estates council session, where bicyclists turned out en masse to call for improved signage in the not-so-bike-friendly community.

 

State

Huntington Beach police are looking for a white man who rode up on a bicycle before yelling racial slurs and throwing a rock through the door of a black family.

Another homeless man was attacked in San Diego, the fifth in the last few weeks; the hammer-wielding attacker was riding a blue mountain bike.

Bakersfield bicyclists will ride to remember a local man who lost his life while riding in Chicago recently.

Menlo Park is planning to remove up to 18 parking spaces to make room for bike lanes. Although the torches and pitchforks will likely come out once the affected homeowners get wind of it.

How do Bay Area chefs love cycling? Let me count the ways…

A Santa Rosa cyclist is 90% of the way through his campaign to ride up the top 100 climbs in the US; he’s now planning to ride up Mt. Whitney — starting from Death Valley — then climb the last 6,000 feet of elevation on foot.

A Truckee woman passed away in her sleep, just hours after she was involved in a bicycling collision. No matter how you feel after a wreck, always assume you’re injured. And if you feel dizzy or lightheaded, get to an emergency room immediately.

 

National

The BBC looks at how the “humble” bicycle is making a comeback in US cities, including a visit to LA’s own newly renamed Pure Cycles.

Portland’s transportation chief talks bikeshare, and explains why women seem to like it.

Nevada cyclists question the lack of serious penalties for drivers who injure or kill bike riders. Which is pretty much the same concerns held by bike riders everywhere.

Nice story from Kansas, as a father works with students at a local community college to develop a 3D-printed device to allow his three-year old son, who was born without his left hand, to ride a bicycle.

A Chicago weekly wonders what’s behind the recent rash of serious bicycling collisions.

The Michigan driver who ran down nine cyclists in Kalamazoo reportedly downed handfuls of pain pills and muscle relaxants before getting behind the wheel; police also found marijuana, meth, more pills and a pipe in his car.

Bloomberg looks at Detroit Bikes, which specializes in making bikeshare bikes, including assembling bicycles for New York’s Citi Bike.

A Pennsylvania cyclist helps save the life of a woman who drove off the road, after he found her unconscious in a stream.

A Florida bike rider was killed when he rode over a live power line that had fallen on a bridge; the line may have been down for as long as seven hours. Never, ever cross or touch a downed power line, even if that means finding another way to get where you’re going.

 

International

A Montreal study shows building bike lanes really does get a few people out of their cars.

Peru reopens a historic outdoor velodrome that had been closed for nearly 30 years.

A Canadian columnist calls for bicycling training, and asks why encourage people to ride their bikes if they’re just going to break the law anyway? After all, licensing drivers has worked so well to discourage any form of scofflaw behavior, right?

Toronto puts its money where it’s mouth is, considering a $12.2 million boost in spending for bikeway construction over the next five years, on top of the $68.1 million already approved.

A London bicyclist says it was like hitting a brick wall when he slammed into a distracted man who stepped into a bike lane without looking.

“Despicable” is the right word for whoever stole an ambulance bicycle from a London paramedic as he was treating a patient.

Bicycling levels remain flat in the UK over the past year.

Scottish authorities are looking for a driver who made a U-turn to deliberately crash into a cyclist after they had exchanged gestures following a close pass.

 

Finally…

Pedal your way to cleaner clothes. Evidently, it’s not considered self-defense if you slap the driver who almost ran you over.

And if you’re thinking about commenting on a woman’s body, just… don’t.

Whether you’re on a bike. Or anywhere else.

 

Morning Links: Reader gets Long Beach to warn cyclists about jet blast; and a handful of upcoming bike events

Recently, we discussed the case of a cyclist who was literally blown away when he was caught in the engine blast from a plane taking off at LAX.

And wondered why there wasn’t a sign warning cyclists using the Aviation Blvd bike lanes to beware.

Now there is.

Except it’s not at LAX.

A reader who prefers to be anonymous was inspired to reach out to the staff of the Long Beach Airport to ask that signs be installed there.

The result was newly installed signs warning of jet blast just off Cover Street, and Lakewood Blvd. And at her insistence, with a self-explanatory graphic for non-English speakers.

LB Jet Blast

………

The nationally recognized Tour de Taco hosted by Stan’s Bike Shop and the Eastside Bike Club rolls this Saturday, with stops promised at six taco stands on the 25-mile social ride.

The Pomona Valley Bicycle Coalition will host a bike ride and community meeting on the 19th, and a bike-in movie on the 30th.

The third annual Tour de Laemmle rolls on July 24th, as you’re invited to ride with chain president Greg Laemmle to visit all the Laemmle Theaters in a single day.

Join the Los Angeles Public Library’s Book Bike for a community bike ride in San Pedro at the end of this month.

The Eastside Bike Club will hold a Menudo Breakfast Ride on August 6th. No, not that Menudo.

Get in some high elevation riding with the annual Tour de Big Bear, offering rides from 25 to 100 miles, also on August 6th.

………

The owner of Britain’s Team Sky does not take kindly to questions about possible motor doping by team leader Chris Froome at the Tour de France.

Evidently, Aussie rider Michael Matthews isn’t jinxed anymore. Alberto Contador, on the other hand, may be, as it’s announced that his injuries from the Tour will keep him out of the Rio Olympics.

The Feds call Lance a “doper, dealer and liar” in legal papers. So tell us something we don’t know.

………

Local

An Op-Ed in the LA Times says the vehicular cycling philosophy that pitted drivers against cyclists for 40 years is finally giving way to separated bike lanes.

The first Los Angeles roundabout in modern times is coming to Northeast LA where the Riverside Bridge intersects with North Figueroa and San Fernando Road. We still can’t seem to get a bike lane on North Fig, though.

The LACBC is hiring a full-time development director.

KPCC looks at attempts by car markers to muscle in on the bicycle business, concluding their bikes are more of an automotive fanboy thing.

The Daily Breeze says yes, it’s illegal to get buzzed and ride your bike.

A Long Beach teenager will ride 525 miles from San Francisco to LA this fall to raise funds to fight juvenile arthritis, after overcoming the disease herself.

Long Beach will install diagonal parking — but not, evidently, back-in parking — on Ocean Blvd to slow traffic and make room for a bike lane.

 

State

Newport Beach becomes the latest SoCal city to crack down on traffic violations that endanger bicyclists and pedestrians today. So ride safely and obey the law.

Huntington Beach police identify the barbeque and bike thief caught on video; now they want your help finding him.

A North San Diego County columnist calls for five communities along the coast highway to band together for a more complete Complete Streets plan.

Clovis police are waiting for an expert witness to review the evidence in a fatal bicycling collision before deciding whether to file charges; the police chief says the rider was struck even though he didn’t do anything wrong. I’ll be happy to review the case for them. Trust me.

 

National

A woman with just one hand will ride around Oahu 12 times to raise $180,000 to buy 12 service dogs for veterans with PTSD.

The Denver area driver who killed the Good Samaritan that stopped to help another driver retrieve a bicycle that had fallen off his car will face charges of vehicular homicide and DUI.

Clearly, not everyone who visits Copenhagen gets it, as the editor of the Denver Business Journal calls on the Mile High City to ditch plans for bike lanes, shortly after returning from the bike-friendly Danish capital.

Drivers in Cedar Rapids IA can’t seem to stop blocking a diagonal-parking-protected bike lane, which relies on drivers not to pull too far forward.

Boston’s city council president says bicycling fatalities can, and should, be prevented with protected bike lanes.

Evidently, it’s open season on bike riders in New York, as a road raging driver chases a pair of bicyclists through a protected bike lane in an attempt to run them down. But good luck getting the NYPD to do anything about it.

Spider-man is one of us, as the web-slinging wall-crawler appears to stop a thief and ride off on his bike during filming of the new movie in Atlanta.

 

International

A Canadian man is riding across the country to call attention to opioid abuse after recovering from his own addiction.

Toronto considers catering to the anti-bike crowd by charging riders for bicycle licenses to pay for bike lanes. Even though everyone else who has studied the idea has concluded it would cost more to license bicyclists than the program would bring in.

A British writer points out what should be obvious, saying we bicyclists aren’t all in this together, despite the perceptions of many drivers. Something I considered myself awhile back.

A new Danish study shows bicycling can lower your risk of Type 2 diabetes. It didn’t work for me, but hopefully you’ll have better luck.

 

Finally…

We may have to deal with road raging drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about being chased by rapid groundhogs. Then again, we could be dodging baby alligators on Minnesota bike paths.

And how better to end today’s update than with a bike-riding raccoon?

Then again, anyone could ride with training wheels. And did anyone check his bike for motor doping?

 

Riverside County bicyclist killed in early morning collision

The Riverside Press-Enterprise is reporting that another bike rider has fallen, in the unincorporated community of Winchester in Riverside County.

According to the paper, 25-year old Winchester resident Zachariah Doll was riding on Highway 79 at Patterson Avenue when he was run down from behind by the driver of a Chevy pickup at 3:18 this morning.

He was pronounced dead at the scene at 3:44 am.

The driver remained at the scene, and did not appear to be under the influence.

There’s other information available at this time, and no word on whether Doll had lights and reflectors on his bicycle.

A street view shows a narrow, two lane rural highway with no paved shoulders, and no visible speed limit sign.

This is the 49th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fourth in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Zachariah Doll and all his family and friends.

 

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