Morning Links: LA debates dockless bikeshare, more bike giveaways, and handlebar mounted tiger repellent

Once again, bikeshare was the common theme in today’s news.

LA officials debate proposed regulations for dockless bikeshare programs that allow them to expand beyond a handful of test programs currently underway.

The San Diego Reader reports that dockless bikeshare companies are pouring money into the city to lobby for favorable regulations.

Coronado took a pass on a pilot dockless bikeshare program after residents argued that the community already has too many bikes. But sure, just keep bringing in more cars.

Video shows New Yorkers swarming a bikeshare station while cars sit parked idly at the curb, suggesting that the 150,000 acres of curbside parking in the city could be put to better use.

………

‘Tis the season.

Ninety-two San Diego third graders go crazy when they’re given new bicycles by the Padres, the last remaining major league sports team in the city that hasn’t yet bolted for Los Angeles.

San Diego’s Metropolitan Transit System gave new bikes to 100 elementary students in the Logan Heights neighborhood.

A pair of San Diego-area organizations gave new bicycles to all 187 second and third graders at a Spring Valley elementary schools.

Corona firefighters are taking time between emergency calls to build 72 bicycles donated by a local businessman for disadvantaged kids.

Over 100 Georgia students will receive new bicycles donated for needy families.

………

It’s Day 21 of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

Thanks to Mike W and Plurabelle Books for their generous contributions to help keep bringing the best bike news and advocacy to your screen every morning, from around the corner and around the world.

………

Local

A new pop-up museum in DTLA celebrates notable failures, from the Edsel and a Donald Trump board game to a plastic bicycle that melted on hot days.

CiclaValley looks at this weekend’s holiday ride sponsored by the LACBC and Bike Walk Glendale.

Bicycle Retailer looks at LA-based Team Dream Team and their new San Marino Cub House.

Bike Talk chats with custom bike maker Art Ramirez.

 

State

A Fallbrook man was seriously injured when his bike was rear-ended by a hit-and-run driver; police are looking for a charcoal grey vehicle with damage to the right front. Best euphemism of the day: the driver “failed to safely maneuver” around the victim’s bike, which is another way of saying the cowardly jerk plowed into him from behind.

Take a 10-mile bike tour of life-like metal sculptures representing the Pleistocene age in Borrego Springs.

Indio will add a pair of bike lanes this spring, including a separated bike lane.

Ventura County sheriff’s deputies are asking for the public’s help in identifying a Camarillo bike thief.

A Fresno man took revenge on a suspected early morning car burglar by cutting his bike in half and nailing it to a tree. Although it’s entirely possible that the bike he cut in half may have been stolen from someone else.

Yes, you can take your Christmas tree home by bike, as these photos of Bay Area bike riders prove. Or a Chanukah bush, for that matter.

A San Raphael man was busted for stealing a cheap guitar after smashing a music store window, when police spotted him riding a bicycle carrying the purloined instrument a few hours later.

 

National

Treehugger says it’s time to start thinking about driving like we do smoking.

Bicyclists in Tucson are angry over the city’s ranking as the second most dangerous city for people on bikes in the US. Meanwhile, no one really seems to care that LA was ranked as the tenth most dangerous city.

A Minneapolis columnist is angry over an LA letter writer’s suggestion that the city shouldn’t go backwards on bike lanes, saying maybe we should put bike lanes on Sepulveda Blvd so we can understand what it’s like. Maybe someone should tell her that we already have bike lanes on Sepulveda, crappy though they may be in places.

Turns out the New York state senator who attempted to impersonate a police officer after illegally blocking a bike lane has a long history of dangerous driving, including speeding through a school zone — three times.

Philadelphia is responding to a recent cycling death by upgrading six blocks of bike lanes in the downtown area. Although I have a hard time calling a few plastic posts a protected bike lane.

 

International

An Instagram account documents a man’s unique collection of classic stamped, forged and cast steel dropouts.

Caught on video: A Vancouver cab company apologizes after one of its drivers was caught on dashcam driving in a bike lane before running a red light with people in the crosswalk.

The human-protected bike lane movement has spread to London.

Bloomberg visits the UK’s Sven Cycles to discover what goes into making a handmade bespoke bike.

A British driver was acquitted of killing a bike rider after saying he just didn’t see her. Which should be seen as an admission of guilt instead of an alibi.

An Australian radio station asks how the country can change drivers’ open hostility towards people on bicycles. Easy. Just make them all ride bikes for a month.

Five people were killed in China when ebike batteries caught fire after being plugged into a homemade recharging system.

A Bangkok writer explores one of the few places where people can ride their bikes free from motor vehicles or joggers, thanks to monks who agreed to abandon the land after moving to a new temple.

 

Competitive Cycling

Does it really surprise anyone to learn that four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome failed a drug test at last year’s Vuelta? Froome had a controversial Therapeutic Use Exemption, or TUE, for salbutamol to treat his asthma, but tested at twice the allowed level. Which he quickly explained away. Just like everyone else who’s gotten caught.

 

Finally…

Once again, throwing a bicycle in front of a train is not a recommended usage. If you’re going to get drunk and ride your bike on the wrong side of the road, at least put a damn light on it.

And always keep a bell on your bike in case you’re ever attacked by a Bengal tiger.

 

Morning Links: Father fighting for his life after La Tuna hit-and-run; NC member attacks “cycling zealots”

Earlier in the week, we mentioned the La Tuna Canyon hit-and-run that left a bicyclist in a coma.

Today the news media caught up, as KNBC-4 offered a report on the crash that has Keith Jackson fighting for his life; KTLA-5 had a similar report.

The father of three was riding with his son and daughter-in-law when the driver of a black Mazda plowed into him, then fled the scene without so much as slowing down. His son says the driver was veering all over the road, possibly driving distracted, before slamming into Jackson as he rode on the shoulder.

He remains unconscious in the ICU, four days after the crash.

A ride will be held this Sunday to finish the La Tuna Canyon ride Jackson started, but was unable to complete, departing from the LA Zoo parking lot at 8:30 am.

CiclaValley says the deadly street is slated to have bike lanes under the city’s mobility plan; however, that would be little protection against an out-of-control driver.

Meanwhile, the person who left him bleeding in the middle of La Tuna remains free. LA’s hit-and-run reward program means there’s an automatic $25,000 bounty for information leading to the arrest and conviction of this heartless coward.

Let’s hope someone collects it soon.

………

Mar Vista’s self-appointed traffic expert is at it again.

Dermatologist and Mar Vista Community Council member Kenneth S. Alpern offers a remarkably biased attack on “cycling zealots” who “eschew scientific data,” while doing exactly the same thing himself.

There’s a reason or five why myself and others have decried the Venice Blvd. “road diet”.  Not only does it hurt motorists, it got in the way of a better, safer solution for both bicyclists and pedestrians and motorists, and safety problems have gone up, not down. (Ed. note: That does not appear to be true; the most recent stats from LADOT show just the opposite.)

Bicyclists want safety and respect, but reconfiguring roads in a way that purportedly help a few but tell the majority to go pound sand (the ones who are otherwise very pro-transit, and happy to pay for it) isn’t helpful.  That road diet interferes with Micro Transit, bus operations, and the ability for small businesses to thrive on what should be Great Streets.

However, the studies he conveniently ignores contradict his attacks.

According to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), road diets have been shown to reduce crashes from 19% to 47%. Other studies have shown that bike lanes reduce injuries and deaths up to 40%, while protected bike lanes, like the ones on Venice, reduce injuries and deaths up to 90% — and not just for people on bikes.

In addition, projects like the one on Venice have been repeatedly shown in cities across the US to improve retail sales, reduce business vacancies, and increase property values in the surrounding neighborhood.

But who would want any of that, right?

It’s far better to pretend the science is on his side, and engage in character assassination of hard working and dedicated city employees.

As well as his fellow Angelenos who are simply fighting for safer, more vibrant and livable streets, and the basic human right to be able to travel safely, and get home to their families in one piece.

Regardless of how or where they choose to travel.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

………

‘Tis the season.

Caught on video: Bighearted LA Rams offensive lineman Andrew Whitworth had a surprise for the students of Grape Street Elementary School in Watts when he showed up to award new bicycles to a few outstanding students — giving new bikes and helmets to each of the nearly 600 students in the school, which he paid for out of his own pocket. Watch the video below if you want to see a lot of really happy kids. And remind yourself what really matters.

A Michigan cop was honored for saving the life of a 12-year old girl who was being attacked by a dog; his department gave the girl a new bicycle and a gift card as early Christmas presents.

………

It’s Day 20 of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

Thanks to Paul F for his generous contribution to help keep bringing you the best bike news and advocacy, from around the corner and around the world.

………

Local

The city council Transportation Committee will consider rules for dockless bikeshare today, proposing the establishment of a pilot program to develop regulations — even though at least three bikeshare providers are already on the city streets.

East Hollywood’s bike trailer-delivered Bicycle Coffee will open a second location in Little Tokyo next year.

The UCLA Bicycle Academy reviews the school’s new strategic plan, and likes the call for better civic engagement.

Curbed says Burbank is leading the way to a more affordable, walkable — and bikeable — future.

 

State

The Moreno Valley Unified School District is looking for volunteers to help contest-winning kids build the bicycle of their dreams.

Former pro cyclist Roy Knickman returned to his hometown as a Paso Robles firefighter to fight the ongoing fires in Ventura County; Knickman won bronze in team time trial in the ’84 Olympics, and had a long pro career before joining the fire department.

A kindhearted Sacramento bike rider is raising funds for a woman who lost her legs when she was hit by a driver after she pulled her car over to help another motorist.

 

National

A recent high school graduate has set out to talk to one veteran of WWII every day, beginning by riding his bike to retirement homes to talk to vets; he estimates it will take 10 years to complete the task. You can see his website here, and contribute to his efforts.

HuffPo offers 12 reasons why bicycling will continue to grow.

Forty-two bike shops in 23 states — and one in Russia — observed the first Bike Shop Day on Saturday.

A long-planned Oklahoma City bike lane somehow disappeared during a series of secret meetings, and no one seems to know who was responsible.

A Tucson running coach traded her car for an ebike for a month. And liked it.

Austin, Texas is transforming a major auto-centric roadway into a bike, pedestrian and transit focused corridor, leaving just one lane for motor vehicles in each direction. Hopefully, Texans will have better sense than to revolt over positive changes to the street, unlike overly entitled drivers in some SoCal cities we could name.

A Boston woman has dropped 55 pounds and quit drinking after taking up bicycling.

When a New York bike rider complained about a state senator’s limo blocking a bike lane, the politician responded by impersonating a cop and trying to pull the rider over. Then his driver floored it, driving on the wrong side of the road and running red lights to get away when bicyclist tried to take his photo.

A Brooklyn bicyclist is preparing to sue the NYPD for wrongful arrest after a judge threw out a ticket he received for arguing with the cop that nearly ran him over.

Florida residents complain that new bike lanes will mean they can’t park in front of their own homes; the state DOT responds saying they can park in their own driveways, and the space in front of their houses was never intended for parking anyway.

 

International

A Canadian ebike rider says sorry he’s not sorry for being happy.

A British driver tells the court he should have slowed down before hitting and killing a man on his bike. You think?

Yesterday we mentioned that a Brit bike rider was facing jail for crashing his bike into a couple of pedestrians; it turns out that the victims were his ex-girlfriend and her new boyfriend, and the crash was anything but accidental.

A UK advocacy group says stop making it so hard to ride a bike to school.

Dublin bike riders protest new signs telling them to dismount at a rail line by doing exactly that. Meanwhile, a Dublin cyclist chases down and confronts a man he sees stealing a bike, causing the thief to drop the bike and run off.

Bike sales in Poland are shifting from mountain bikes to urban cycling, and bucking international trends by going from the internet back to brick-and-motor bike shops.

Australian police are looking for a road raging bicyclist who hit a woman’s car several times before reaching in and throwing her car keys down an embankment. And scaring her Down Syndrome daughter.

Caught on video: An Aussie bicyclist riding in a crosswalk with the light is hit by a right-turning driver; fortunately, he appears to bounce back up. But even though the video clearly shows the red light stopping cross traffic, a Kiwi website blames him for ignoring the traffic signal. Maybe red means go Down Under.

It was a deadly year for bicyclists in New Zealand, as cycling traffic fatalities were triple last year’s total.

American cycling great Rebecca Rusch writes about bicycling the 1,200 mile Ho Chi Minh Trail in search of the place where her late father’s plane went down during the Vietnam war.

 

Competitive Cycling

UCI announces the 18 teams that will compete on this year’s WorldTour.

The Giro may have to move the start of next year’s race from Jerusalem in light of the tension caused by Trump’s decision to move the US embassy to the city.

Transgender former cyclist Philippa York says cycling’s conservative culture suppresses LGTBQ issues, pointing out there’s not one openly gay cyclist in the men’s peloton.

 

Finally…

If you’re already out on bail while you appeal your conviction for hitting a bike rider while high, try not to get busted in an underage prostitution sting. At last, a cure for helmet hair, also known as a headband.

And it may not be the best idea to crash a holiday boat parade by riding your bike through the crowd and loudly asking if anyone wants to buy heroin.

………

Please accept my best wishes to all celebrating the Festival of Lights this week.

Chag Urim Sameach!

 

Morning Links: Recaps of Sunday’s Wilshire CicLAvia, e-bikeshare comes to NorCal, and how to giftwrap a bicycle

It’s Day 19 of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

………

Local

Would a bike lane on 5th Street through Skid Row in DTLA help the fight against drug dealing on the street, or just move it somewhere else?

The new management of the LA Weekly provides a baker’s three dozen photos from Sunday’s Wilshire Blvd CicLAvia, while Streetsblog offers an open thread to get your take on the day.

Metro will be closing a pair of bikeshare locations in DTLA through the rest of this week due to construction in the area.

Newly installed security cameras help Claremont police bust a thief for stripping parts off a $2,000 bike.

 

State

The woman whose body was discovered in San Francisco Bay by a bike rider on a Sunnyvale bike trail has been identified as a 23-year old Google software engineer.

The Bay Area’s low income residents remain reluctant to embrace the region’s Ford GoBike bikeshare.

Bighearted Santa Rosa middle school kids raised funds to buy bike helmets for 400 kids who lost homes in the recent fires.

Caltrans says no, you can’t ride your bike on I-5 through Sacramento, even if they are closing an alternate route for reconstruction.

Davis, Sacramento and West Sacramento are launching the largest docked ebike bikeshare system in the US.

 

National

Yes, General Motors really is trying to kill you.

With the holiday’s coming, you undoubtedly need tips on how to giftwrap a bicycle. Or turn it into a festive giftwrap moose.

A kindhearted Salt Lake City business owner returned a stolen adult tricycle to its owner after he bought it for $150, and refused to take anything in return.

In a story bike riders everywhere can relate to, Tennessee bicyclists complain that bike lanes are becoming obstacle courses littered with trash cans, cars and yard waste.

A Durham NC newspaper applauds plans for bike boulevards to encourage bicycling and improve safety for younger residents.

 

International

Ella Cycling Tips offers a primer on how — and why — to avoid sexist ad blunders when marketing bikes to women. Seriously, it ain’t that hard. Just try speaking to women like they’re actual human beings for a change.

No bias here. An Edmonton, Canada columnist disputes the city’s count of how many people are using new bike lanes, based purely on his own opinion. And somehow manages to place a price tag on the riders’ bikes and clothing by standing on the sidewalk and watching them go by.

US dockless bikeshare provider LimeBike, which just expanded to Los Angeles, is establishing a beachhead in Europe.

There’s a lot of history behind Brompton’s flagship London store, which is on the site of the bike shop where England’s first bicycle was sold in 1819. Although I would contend that a wooden hobby horse is a forerunner of the bike, not an actual bicycle.

Britain’s Sir Chris Hoy has decided he needs another year to get ready for his attempt to bike to the South Pole from the edge of Antarctica.

A British man has been told to expect a jail sentence after pleading guilty to seriously injuring a couple when he rode his bike into them at speed as they walked along an esplanade. Meanwhile, a 27-year old Bristol, England man has died after he was hit by a bike rider.

You could be the proud owner of your very own English ebike-based advertising business.

A writer in the UK correctly notes that there’s no excuse for not having lights on your bike after dark.

Actor and former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger teams with Peter Sagan and the mayor of Paris to promote bicycling and call attention to the health aspects of climate change.

A new French ebike can brake for itself, and looks like something from Buck Rogers.

A Kiwi bike rider was threatened with a hammer by a road raging driver after confronting him over a way too close pass.

Caught on video: An Australian bike rider was lucky to walk away after a driver slammed into him in a violent crash.

 

Competitive Cycling

Sad news from Rhode Island, where former BMX champ Kevin “K-Rob” Robinson died unexpectedly at age 45 after suffering an apparent stroke; he had set a world record as recently as last year for the longest ramp-to-ramp jump.

Aussie Richie Porte has a grudge with Tour de France and Giro champ Chris Froome over tactics that cost him a victory in the Critérium du Dauphiné.

 

Finally…

The next time someone questions whether bike riders are tough, ask if they could ride a bike to a party store after getting shot in the head — and tell them we make better drivers, too. Why just ride using Campagnolo when you can wear it?

And no, riding a bike does not mean you’re a liberal.

Morning Links: Leading climate change denier attacks bikes, and problems bicyclists face on the road & with police

He’s back.

The anti-bike writer in the Financial Post who called for banning bicycles last week, saying cities made a huge mistake in promoting bicycling, is back with a second screed even less informed than the first.

Fake news, indeed.

Lawrence Solomon, executive director of the Urban Renaissance Institute, is back to misstate and misinterpret bicycling crash statistics to suggest that bikes have made the streets more dangerous, going so far as to cite unnamed studies “not funded by bike-path proponents” that show bike infrastructure actually increases crashes.

Which is the exact opposite of every study I’ve ever seen, few, if any, of which have been funded by “bike path proponents.”

It’s the worst kind of drivel, taking unrelated data points to support his arguments, such as suggesting that the recent increase in overall traffic fatalities is somehow due to the increase in bicycling, and that bike riders are almost always the ones at fault in any crash.

The problem is, his baseless arguments have given cover to other writers to attack bikes and bike lanes, like a Staten Island columnist who asks if we’re watching the beginning of an anti-cycling bikelash, or the writer for an alt-right website who does little more than repost Solomon’s arguments.

However, few of those echoing his arguments have bothered to consider who it is who’s doing the writing — a leading climate change denier and anti-vaxxer funded by the oil and gas industry, posing as “one of Canada’s leading environmentalists.” Solomon has gone so far as to call the groundbreaking Kyoto Protocol “the single biggest threat to the global environment.”

Which would suggest that everything he says should be taken with a grain of salt.

If not an entire bag.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the alt-right link.

………

A writer for Outside captures succinctly the problems bike riders face on the roads.

Let that sink in: I was in a bike lane, wearing a bright orange helmet, sans earphones, when a car traveling over the speed limit and completely off the road struck me from behind—and the police tried to ticket me and let the driver go free. I realized that day that altercations between cars and bikes aren’t so much about the risk factors, like distracted driving, bike lanes, or mountain versus road. They’re about a car culture that devalues bikes.

Over the years, passing motorists have thrown and struck me with eggs, fountain drinks, and, once, a half-empty can of beer. I’ve been shouted at, flipped off, menaced, driven into the shoulder, and even chased on foot. My own father-in-law grouses regularly about cyclists on the road and likes to joke about “door-popping” them. If cyclists can’t even rely on our families or the police, it’s clear that we are on our own.

It’s worth taking a few minutes to read.

If you’ve been hit by a driver, you may recognize yourself in the story. I certainly do; when I was run down by a road raging driver, the police officers who responded believed her story. And ended up threatening to arrest me for filing a false police report, leaving me to limp home with a broken arm and damaged bike.

If not, it’s fair warning that you may be blamed in a crash even if you didn’t do anything wrong.

It’s not right. But it’s the battle we have to fight far too often.

Note: I originally left out the link to this piece; thanks to Mike Wilkinson and J. Patrick Lynch for the heads-up.

………

BOLO Alert: A bike rider was seriously injured in a hit-and-run in La Tuna Canyon on Saturday; the victim was still unconscious after 20 hours in the ICU. The vehicle was described as a newer black Mazda SUV. Thanks to Mike Kim for the tip.

………

A reminder that if you haven’t signed it already, you can support one of LA’s most underserved communities by signing a petition calling for bike lanes in DTLA’s Skid Row.

We the undersigned residents of the City of Los Angeles, sign this petition calling on Council member Jose Huizar of the 14th District and the Department of Transportation to begin the process of creating Skid Row specific bike lanes on 5th street heading west and 6th street heading east. Skid Row has one of the largest bicycle riding populations in Los Angeles and because of this, we feel that we need bike lanes on these streets to improve public safety.

Thanks to Bobby Peppey for the heads-up.

………

‘Tis the season.

Over 400 Cathedral City students got new bikes for getting good grades.

One hundred ninety Clovis kids got new bikes and helmets thanks to a local nonprofit group.

Hundreds of Sonoma County fire victims got new bikes on Sunday.

Five hundred kids in Tucson got new bicycles thanks to a local community activist.

Eighty Aurora IL volunteers built 350 bicycles to donate to kids.

Roughly 100 San Antonio kids took home new bikes as part of an earn-a-bike program.

One hundred bikes were donated to children of law enforcement officers in College Station TX.

Around 35 Santas rode their bikes to raise $5,000 for a Green Bay, Wisconsin children’s hospital.

Around 90 people took part in a 1.2 mile bike ride through an underground cavern in Louisville KY, decorated with more than 2 million lights and past 850 holiday displays.

An Ulster NY bicycle club donated 30 bicycles and helmets to the local county children’s services.

………

It’s Day 18 of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

………

Local

By all reports, Los Angeles enjoyed another successful CicLAvia yesterday; next year could see one in running through San Dimas, La Verne, Pomona and Claremont.

Metro Bike Share wants your feedback, whether or not you’ve ever used bikeshare.

David Wolfberg points out that even the LA Auto Show doesn’t recommend driving there.

 

State

Smoking dope will soon be banned in motor vehicles in California. But bikes aren’t considered motor vehicles under California law, so puff away. As long as you don’t do it in public or ride under the influence.

The Orange County Register’s David Whiting looks at efforts to clear homeless camps off the Santa Ana River Trail, even though the people living in them have nowhere else to go.

UC Santa Barbara students are having to bike through smoke and ash from the Thomas Fire to get ready for finals.

Life is cheap in San Luis Obispo, where a 60-year old driver gets 90 days behind bars for illegally crossing a double yellow line to pass another vehicle, and killing a bike rider in a head-on crash; he’s expected to actually serve just half of that. The driver is reportedly grief-stricken. Although likely not as much as the relatives of the victim.

A San Luis Obispo man responds to recent anti-bike columns by asking city officials to make it safer for people on bicycles, and for local residents to spare a few moments for the safety of cyclists.

Sad news from Fresno, where a bicyclist was killed by a suspect drunk hit-and-run driver.

A tragic find, as a bike rider discovered a young woman’s body in the water along a Sunnyvale bike trail.

Life is even cheaper in Napa, where a 77-year old woman got three years probation and had her license permanently revoked for the hit-and-run death of a popular cyclist.

A Boston website says Marin County’s West Ridgecrest road up Mt. Tamalpais may be one of the best bike rides in the US.

An Oak Park man in riding his bicycle around Sacramento, collecting garbage and scraps to turn into compost. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

 

National

The Wall Street Journal says gadget obsessed cyclists need a data detox, while a writer for Slate complains that he doesn’t even know how turn off the tech and ride his bike for fun anymore. Seriously, turn everything off, and for the rest of this month, just ride for the fun of it. You might even remember why you love bicycling again.

NPR looks at automakers attempts to woo members of Gen Z, who have shown little interest in owning cars so far.

California Congressman Tom McClintock discusses his bill to allow bicycles back in wilderness areas.

A Denver weekly looks at how the murder of mountain biking legend Mike Rust was finally solved, seven years after he disappeared; his killer was found guilty of 1st degree murder last week, along with a host of other charges.

A Colorado newspaper applauds plans to make the town more walkable and bikeable, but worries about the loss of 162 downtown parking places. Because everyone knows people never walk or bike to go shopping. Right?

A group from my hometown is asking the public for another 75 bicycles so they can donate 400 bikes to kids for the holidays. And they can drop off those bikes at the shop where I bought my first bike, back when dinosaurs still walked the earth.

A Chicago letter writer suggests everyone walking on the river walk should wear a bike helmet, since city hall somehow ignored his letter demanding that bikes to be banned from the path.

Still no explanation for what drove a bike-riding doctor to attack his neighbor, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul.

The surgeon who treated Bono after his Central Park bicycling crash was found dead in his New York apartment with a knife plunged into his chest, the victim of an apparent suicide.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 79-year old Georgia man is riding from Northern California to Atlanta.

Seriously? A Tallahassee FL writer welcomes dockless bikeshare to town, but worries where people will park their cars to use them.

 

International

A Canadian cycling magazine calls on the country to adopt a National Cycling Strategy. Something you’re not likely to ever see in the US.

The war on bikes continues, as someone vandalized a bike belonging to the mayor of Victoria, British Columbia for the second time; she doesn’t want to believe it has anything to do with her support for bike lanes.

Roughly 180,000 Quebec residents ride their bikes all through the winter, despite the cold and snow. Tell that to the next person who tells you Angelenos won’t ride their bikes to work year-round.

This is what happens when you install a temporary bike lane around a Toronto construction site, but don’t do anything to accommodate people on foot.

Ed Sheeran gets back on a bike in London for the first time since he broke both arms in a crash, even if it did have training wheels.

Shades of Children of the Corn. A British town is installing bollards designed to look like little children, and stare back at drivers to get their attention. Thanks again to David Wolfberg.

A Bulgarian expat has formed a volunteer crew to rescue damaged and abandoned dockless bikeshare bikes in Singapore; he may have his work cut out for him.

A Pakistani woman became the first woman to ride a bike up Mt. Kilimanjaro.

An Indian man is riding across the country to encourage people to ride to work.

 

Competitive Cycling

A freshly bearded cycling great Bradley Wiggins craps out in his attempt to make the British rowing team, after mistakenly lowering his oars in a “schoolboy error.”

The very busy Peter Flax has written a great profile of lifelong bike racer Bill Elliston, saying that Elliston, while never quite fast enough to make the pros, “represents much that is pure and good in the sport of bike racing.”

 

Finally…

Kylo Ren is one of us. We may have to worry about distracted drivers, but at least we don’t have dodge zebras.

And Australia chose their bird of the year even though it attacks bicyclists.

Or maybe because of it.

 

Bicyclist killed in Thermal crash when driver ran stop sign

A 68-year old man riding a road bike is dead because a driver couldn’t be bothered to observe a stop sign.

According to the Desert Sun, 68-year old Bellingham, Washington resident Jack Roger Laird was killed when he was struck by a driver at 12:06 pm yesterday, at the intersection of Fillmore Street and Avenue 62 in Thermal.

The driver, a woman in her mid-20s, reportedly blew through a stop sign and plowed into Laird’s bike; she stayed at the scene and was cooperating with police.

Laird died at the scene.

A street view shows a pair of two-lane roadways converging in the middle of the desert, controlled by stop signs in every direction. A CHP spokesperson says that drivers frequently ignore the stop signs.

There is a 55 mph speed limit on 62nd, and no reason to believe drivers go any slower on Fillmore.

Or that slowly, for that matter.

There’s something seriously wrong when someone can’t visit this state without going back home in a box. Or ride a bike in the middle of nowhere without worrying about drivers to whom a stop sign apparently means nothing.

This is the 61st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eighth in Riverside County this year. Laird is the 2nd bike rider to die in Thermal in the last four years.

That compares with 70 in SoCal this time last year, and ten in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jack Roger Laird and all his family and loved ones.

 

Morning Links: CBS2/KCAL9 forms charity cycling team, no new SoCal Bike Friendly Cities, and a war on bike lanes

Jeff Vaughn is one of us.

The CBS2/KCAL9 news anchor spent his first few months after moving here with his family familiarizing himself as much with where to ride his bike as with the city itself.

Now he’s joined with some of his coworkers to give back to the community by forming a station cycling team to participate in fundraising events in the Los Angeles area.

Here’s what he had to say.

The CBSLA Cycling Team is training for the 2018 cycling season and is committed to the June Pasadena BikeMS ride and Malibu Triathlon benefiting Children’s Hospital of LA. We would love to attend area charity rides to spread awareness for their cause and for our cycling team. We started with four members and have grown to around ten for 2018. If anyone is interested in joining us to help local charities through fitness and donations, drop me a line at [email protected] Or follow me on Twitter and on Facebook for more info.

You can click here to support Jeff in the BikeMS Ride, or back other members of the CBS2/KCAL9 team.

………

The Bike League released their list of new and renewing Bicycle Friendly Communities.

Coronado renewed its status at the Silver level, even if all those bike lanes look like graffiti and give local residents vertigo. Riverside and Temecula were both renewed at the Bronze level.

And yes, Los Angeles is still a Bronze BFC, even as councilmembers block needed bike lanes, motorists demand their removal, Vision Zero doesn’t seem to be going anywhere and the city’s vaunted bike plan remains nothing but vaporware.

………

Today’s common theme seems to be a war on bike lanes.

A Minneapolis doctor says bikes are good, but bike lanes don’t belong on the street because most people drive cars, and all those cars get in the way of ambulances.

A Chattanooga TN columnist looks at the bikelash caused by the “horrors” of bike lanes in the city. Although what he describes sounds like the real problem is crappy bike lanes.

A New York assemblyman is demanding that the city rip out a newly installed protected bike lane put in after a bike rider was killed, which drivers can’t seem to avoid crashing into.

And a columnist in Ontario, Canada says bike lanes offer no benefits and waste tax money, and are just a needless pet project unless their success can be guaranteed in advance.

………

‘Tis the season.

Nearly 300 children got new bikes in San Bernardino County, thanks to the 14th annual Doris Davies Memorial Bicycle Giveaway

An Iowa woman spent her year raising funds to buy 71 kids bikes to donate to the Salvation Army, for the 12th year in a row.

………

We’ve reached the halfway point of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

………

Local

The LACBC’s planned Mulholland cleanup with Phil Gaimon has been postponed until next year due to the Skirball fire.

Caltrans could give PCH a Complete Streets makeover in Wilmington, a much-needed improvement for a small section of LA County’s killer highway.

CiclaValley discovers that Burbank is outdoing Los Angeles when it comes to Valley bike lanes.

 

State

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole an ebike from an 80-year old Laguna Hills man — as he was hanging Christmas lights for his pastor’s widow, no less.

Talk about missing the point. Bakersfield officials want to know how to educate pedestrians about traffic safety, after a driver jumps the curb and kills a five-year old girl walking on the sidewalk. When your stats show bicyclists and pedestrians were at fault in nearly three-quarters of fatal crashes, chances are, the real problem is with the crash investigators, not the victims.

A Bay Area TV station honors an Antioch police officers for not giving up until he found a $4000 adaptive tricycle stolen from a special needs girl.

San Francisco fast tracks bike and pedestrian improvements to a notorious tangle of highways and bikeways that had recently been overrun by a homeless camp.

Sad news from Oakland, where a man was killed in a collision as he was getting on his bicycle; the victim was thrown 160 feet by the — allegedly — speeding driver.

 

National

The International Mountain Bicycling Association announced that it will not support a proposed federal bill that would allow mountain bikes in some wilderness areas for the first time in 33 years.

Thanks to biomed students at Ohio’s University of Akron, a six-year old boy with a rare genetic condition can now ride a bike with his friends for the first time.

A Philadelphia petition calls on the city to speed up safety improvements under its Vision Zero plan.

A new report on health equity calls for more bike lanes in poor neighborhoods in New Orleans. Which pretty much goes for every large city, although bike lanes are sometimes seen as a symptom of gentrification.

A Miami bicyclist decided to avoid crappy bike lanes on a 3.5 mile causeway, and ride on the raised center median instead.

 

International

Life is cheap in British Columbia, where a truck driver killing a bike rider in a right hook is only worth a lousy $1,000 fine.

The war on bikes goes on, as someone has been tossing tacks on a popular British bike commuting route.

Distracted bicycling could be on the way out in the Netherlands, which plans to ban texting while cycling starting in 2019.

Australia’s prime minister is looking for the anonymous artist who left a rainbow colored yarn-bombed bike outside his residence on the day the country legalized gay marriage.

The Department of DIY strikes in Melbourne, Australia, where bike advocates used tape to create their own protected bike lane, on a street that only has a designated bike lane two hours a day during the morning rush hour.

Caught on video: An Aussie man throws his bike at mall security guards after one of the guards kicked his bike while throwing him out of the mall, in a racially tinged incident.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling News names Peter Sagan’s third world championship the year’s most memorable moment in men’s cycling, while a sports journalists association names Chris Froome their Sportsman of the Year.

Team Sky cyclist Luke Rowe is back to training again after shattering his leg in a rafting accident, knowing another break could mean he might never ride a bike again.

Ella Cycling Tips talks with American cycling legend Connie Carpenter-Phinney, winner of the first women’s road cycling gold medal back in the leather hairnet days at the ’84 LA Olympics; these days, she’s better known as a mother of three-time US time-trial champ Taylor Phinney.

 

Finally…

Seriously, this is an ebike. What to get your favorite pro cyclist for Christmas.

And don’t punch drivers, no matter how much you think they need it.

No, really.

Morning Links: Ryu keeps 6th Street auto-centric & dangerous, bike-riding heroes, and the war on bikes goes on

Just a quick reminder that tonight is the LACBC’s annual open house at their headquarters in DTLA. It’s free for members, and always a good time for a good cause. And a chance to meet some of the people helping lead the fight for a safer, more bikeable Los Angeles.

………

In news that shouldn’t surprise anyone, Councilmember David Ryu has blocked plans for a road diet on 6th Street, bowing to the desires of pass-through drivers over the safety requests from the local neighborhood council.

Even though Ryu has always claimed he’d let local residents guide his decisions.

However, reports from people involved in the long and unsuccessful fight for a safer 6th suggested that he had long ago decided against the road diet, and that the recent public hearing and online poll were just a political fig leaf to give Ryu cover to go against the wishes of local residents.

Just as Gil Cedillo had conducted a number of sham public meetings before announcing his foregone decision to halt the shovel-ready road diet on North Figueroa that had been approved by his predecessor.

Consider this from Streetsblog’s story following Ryu’s public announcement yesterday morning.

Ryu hosted a meeting in October which featured inaccurate presentation boards. Meeting attendees were requested to fill out a survey that did not include the two options presented, nor the road diet plan as designed by LADOT and disseminated by MCWCC. Though the survey did not mention the road diet, according to Ryu, the survey results showed that only “Roughly 37 percent expressed support for a proposed road diet.”

Misleadingly, Ryu’s statement, and his website’s summary of survey results, relate that the survey found “Nearly 85 percent of respondents stated that a car is their primary mode of transportation,” though that question was not asked. Ryu’s survey asked respondents to “check all that apply” on a list of transportation modes that they use on 6th Street, so it is not mathematically possible to derive a valid percentage for car usage, much less whether a car is a respondent’s primary mode of transportation.

Instead, Ryu is going forward with his own dangerously auto-centric plan that residents fear will actually increase speeds on the street, while he downplays the dangers of speeding drivers — let alone the risk posed by drivers adhering to the already too-high speed limit.

Never mind that speed is a factor in virtually all traffic fatalities, since crashes at slower speeds are far more survivable than higher speeds.

You can read the full text of Ryu’s announcement here, along with Mid City West Community Council Chair Scott Epstein’s response.

I’ll leave you with this comment I received from one local resident.

I live on Hauser and 6th and can’t say how disappointed I am in the councilman. His half measure doesn’t even address the goal he says is the most important. His goal of adding turn lanes doesn’t extend past Burnside, leaving the site of a fatal crash on Cochran unaddressed.

I’ve been vocal about my support of the road diet and have felt dismissed and disregarded throughout. I’m incredibly disappointed in his lack of foresight, especially as he toots his own horn for adding dockless bike share with nowhere safe to ride them. It’s disgraceful the utter lack of infrastructure in our district, and ignorant of the issues facing our densifying city.

Thanks to Danila and Tyler for the heads-up.

………

Once again, bike riders are heroes. Or make that twice.

A Greenfield CA cyclist trained in CPR saves the life of a man who collapsed on the side of the road.

A bike rider not only fishes a puppy out of a Vietnamese river, he uses his water bottle as a makeshift ventilator to get the dog breathing again.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

A British bike rider was injured when two men on a passing scooter pushed him off his bicycle and into traffic.

A legendary Scottish rugby player was pelted with eggs from a passing car as he rode his bike in Glasgow.

………

This is the cost of traffic violence.

A world famous biologist and conservation scientist was killed in a collision while riding his bicycle in Cambridge, England.

A respected former Brown University engineering professor and real estate developer was killed in a Manhattan crash when he allegedly rode through a red light.

………

‘Tis the season.

Members of the San Diego Los Angeles Chargers surprised students and staff at a Carson elementary school by giving new bicycles to nearly 150 kids, after originally showing up to give bikes to just five essay contest winners.

An Arizona program plans to give 116 kids  “better than new” refurbished bicycles this Christmas.

………

It’s Day 14 of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

Thanks to Bryan Z, Jonathan P, and Dennis E for their generous donations to help support this site. It means a lot to me, especially on a day when we went dark.

………

Local

As long as we’re discussing wrong-headed decisions by LA councilmembers, this one by Paul Koretz asking to have dangerous sidewalks removed from the prioritization for Vision Zero sets a new standard for dangerously low safety standards.

Downtown News says construction for the My Figueroa project is blocking parking spaces on 11th Street, and killing local businesses.

Walk Eagle Rock reports that three different dockless bikeshare providers — LimeBike, Ofo and Spin — can now be found on decidedly bike-unfriendly North Figueroa in Highland Park. Meanwhile, dockless bikeshare is driving bike ridership trends up in some cities across the US. Let’s hope that happens here and forces the city council to take notice.

 

State

The San Diego County Bicycle Coalition will host an ‘80s themed Joy Ride to celebrate the organization’s 30th anniversary.

No bias here. San Luis Obispo’s anti-bike columnist creates the new religion of “Bikeology,” which he says rhymes with “Scientology,” as he insists the city council’s 11th Commandment is “Thou shalt bike!” Works for me.

A Los Altos columnist addresses the objections to a proposed Idaho Stop law in California.

Bike theft is nothing new. Stealing a San Francisco bike repair van may be.

A compromise with the San Francisco Fire Department means the parking spaces for a parking-protected bike lane planned for Market Street will be converted to a white loading zones instead.

When you see a homeless person on a $3,000 bike, there’s a good possibility it’s not his.

 

National

The National Complete Streets Coalition says no street is complete unless equity is taken into account.

Who needs a tent when you can travel with your very own bicycle camper?

The Seattle Times profiles the city’s chief traffic engineer and his efforts to reduce congestion and improve safety in the city.

A Colorado bike rider is dead because a driver couldn’t manage to keep her eyes on the road while turning off her car’s sound system. If you can’t perform a function while keeping your eyes on the road and at least one hand on the wheel, don’t do it. Period.

A 7-year old boy in Vicksburg MS gets a new bike as a reward, after the mayor sees him stop and put his hand over his heart when a funeral procession passed.

Caught on video: Florida police are looking for a man on a bicycle who shot at an officer who tried to pull him over for not having a taillight.

A Florida man has been arrested for the hit-and-run that killed a woman, who had been rescued from Hurricane Irma weeks earlier, while she was riding her bike last week.

 

International

Dockless bikeshare provider Obike is the latest company to suffer a data breach, exposing user information online for at least two weeks.

Seriously? A British Columbia man faces just a slap on the wrist for killing a bike rider when he crossed onto the wrong side of the road and slammed his car into five cyclists riding single file in the opposite direction.

A Toronto bike lane is a bike lane except when it’s hearse parking. Meanwhile, a Toronto man got his stolen $3,000 mountain bike back after he discovered it on Facebook 8,500 miles away in the Philippines Thanks to Norm Bradwell for the links.

Also from Toronto — and also courtesy of Bradwell — comes news that bicycling rates are surging in some neighborhoods, with up to 34% of people living in the downtown area reporting they commute by bike.

A new study from the UK suggests that the health risks from pollution outweighs the benefits of exercise along smoggy streets for people over 60. Meanwhile, another report says watching bicycling on virtual reality headsets could make people 40% more likely to take up bicycling.

It takes a real schmuck to steal the bicycle an English firefighter used to respond to emergency calls.

A Dublin, Ireland bike rider died following a collision with a pedestrian on a bike path. A tragic reminder that collisions between pedestrians and bike riders can be just as dangerous for the people on two wheels as the ones on two feet.

Two Northern Irish brothers got busted for selling $146,000 worth of bicycles on eBay that were stolen from a local bike store warehouse.

A British writer living in Denmark says there’s no need to rush to the gym when you can just run your kids to daycare in a cargo bike.

The Guardian asks if the famed Paris Vélib’ bikeshare system is already out of date.

An LA native discovers a deep connection with Israel from the seat of her bike.

Five battalions of Borneo soldiers are riding 614 miles on a good will tour to introduce the newly formed Border Guards.

 

Competitive Cycling

Irish cyclist Sam Bennett is rapidly becoming one of the fasted sprinters in the peloton, after choosing cycling over soccer at an early age.

UCI says after further review, Peter Sagan didn’t intentionally elbow Mark Cavendish after all, which led to his disqualification from the Tour de France; Peter Flax offers his own dramatization of those crucial 15 seconds.

VeloNews looks at next year’s pro team kits.

Phil Gaimon isn’t the only ex-pro chasing KOMs, as former Bora-Argon 18 rider Bartosz Huzarski is the new king of a Himalayan mountain.

After retiring as a cyclist, Britain’s five-time Olympic champ Bradley Wiggins is taking a crack at the country’s Olympic rowing team.

Join the Air Force, ride a bike.

 

Finally…

What every BMX rider dreams of — a $3,200 haute couture bike. Your next cycling jersey could be seven recycled plastic bottles.

And we may have to deal with impatient drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about getting trampled by wild elephants.

………

On a personal note, thank you to everyone who reached out to me yesterday for their kind words and support. You really lifted my spirits on a day when I felt like I’d let you down for not writing anything.

 

My apologies once again

Maybe the 13th day of the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive really is bad luck.

It’s been a struggle to keep up with this site while my wife was in the hospital for the last month, then caring for her once she came home this past weekend.

Tonight it all caught up with me, passing out from sheer exhaustion almost as soon as I opened my laptop. I woke up just a few minutes ago, well after midnight, and too late to do anything but apologize once again.

I am truly sorry for today’s failure. I feel a genuine obligation to keep you informed about what’s going on in the world of bicycling, and regret that I haven’t been able to keep up with that lately, regardless of what’s going on in my life.

I’m going to get some more sleep, and be back with a fresh post tomorrow to catch up on what we’ve missed.

Man killed riding bike in Murrieta collision Sunday evening

A man has died following a rear-end collision while riding his bike in Murrieta Sunday evening.

The Press-Enterprise reports that the victim, later identified as 43-year old Murrieta resident Khuda Dad, was struck by the driver of a van mid-block on Washington Ave between Lemon Street and Davenport Way at 5:57 pm.

Dad was riding north on Washington when he was rear-ended by the van. He was taken to a local hospital where he died the following day.

The driver remained at the scene. Police are still investigating what caused the crash, but say drugs or alcohol don’t appear to have been a factor.

A street view shows one northbound lane on Washington with no shoulder or sidewalk, along with a center turn lane and two southbound lanes. The street appears to have a 40 mph speed limit.

Anyone with information is urged to call to Traffic Investigator Jennifer Metoyer at 951/461-6375.

This is the 60th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Khuda Dad and all his loved ones.

Morning Links: Stolen bike recovered through Bike Index, LA bike safety sucks less, and new tax bill screws bikes

Another stolen bike has been returned to its owner thanks to Bike Index and the LAPD.

How the bike was recovered: A Good Samaritan searching for a used road bike saw a Craigslist posting for my bike for a suspiciously low price and thought to check for stolen postings online. He came across my posting on Bike Index, contacted me to confirm it was mine, and set up a meeting with the seller. I approached seller with the Los Angeles Police Department and had my bike returned! It was a very good day.

Let this be a reminder to register your bike. It doesn’t cost a dime, but could be the best investment you could make if your bike is ever stolen.

Although it never hurts to make a tax-deductible donation to Bike Index to help support their efforts to bring bikes back home to their owners.

………

Good news for LA bike riders, as Forbes Magazine reveals we’re only the tenth most dangerous city in America for people on bikes.

So we may suck, but not as much as San Jose and San Francisco, which came in fifth and seventh, respectively, or Albuquerque, which claimed the prize for the most dangerous city in the US for bicyclists.

And who knows, the way the city’s Vision Zero plan is going, one day we may move all the way down to eleven. Or maybe even twelve.

That’s something to celebrate, right?

Right?

………

People for Bikes wonders what the US Senate could have been thinking, as the new tax bill eliminates a small monthly benefit for biking to work, while maintaining much larger tax breaks for driving and using transit.

Here’s what they had to say.

Today, the Senate voted to eliminate the $20 per-month tax benefit available for those who bike to work while maintaining both the $255 per-month parking and transit benefit.

“What is the Senate thinking? Why single out a modest incentive that encourages people to bike to work, increasing community health and reducing congestion, while maintaining a significantly larger and more expensive incentive for people to drive?” said Tim Blumenthal, President of PeopleForBikes. “We encourage the conference committee to include this popular and common sense bike tax benefit as the House did in its version of the bill.”

PeopleForBikes spearheaded a letter from bike industry leaders calling on both the Senate and House to maintain the bike tax benefit. You can read the full letter here.

PeopleForBikes also joined a coalition 20 national organizations in support of the tax benefit. You can see the full text of the letter here.

………

‘Tis the season.

Four hundred Portland kids got their first bicycles, thanks to an organization that has given away over 10,000 bikes to lower income families since 1995.

Another 400 kids are expected to get new bicycles from a Boise ID nonprofit.

Employees of a New Jersey insurance company built 26 bicycles for a local toy drive.

On the other hand, the Salvation Army in Akron, Ohio turned Scrooge for the holidays, refusing to accept bikes as gifts for their Angel Tree program because they don’t have any room to store them.

………

This is day twelve of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

Thanks to Christopher M, Tyrone C and Robert K for their generous donations to help support this site.

………

Local

LA Magazine suggests the best ways to experience LA without a car, including taking a bike tour.

CiclaValley celebrates a new, if somewhat bee barricaded, drinking fountain in Griffith Park.

 

State

San Diego may be left behind when it comes to dockless bikeshare, thanks to the city’s exclusive contract with docked bikeshare provider DecoBike. Although a little inconvenience like may not stop some of the dockless providers from flooding the city’s streets with their bikes, by following the Uber model of coming in first and asking for permission later.

The San Diego County Bicycle Coalition announced the winners of their 2017 Golden Gear Awards.

Caught on video: San Francisco advocates once again form a human protected bike lane to call for protected lanes on upper Market Street.

Sad news from Oakland, where a West Oakland bike rider was killed in a hit-and-run collision.

Chico police are looking for a bike-riding transient who may have started a fire that destroyed a local business.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on how to avoid injuries common to people over 40. And no, staying 39 is not one of the options.

Honolulu joins Orange County and San Francisco in evicting homeless encampments from a separated bike path.

The upscale Robb Report looks at how Denver’s Alchemy Bicycle Company hand builds their bespoke carbon, steel and titanium bikes.

Now that’s more like it. A Colorado man faces charges of DUI, vehicular assault, hit-and-run, careless driving causing bodily injury and driving without a valid license for fleeing the scene after hitting a bike rider.

A Michigan man will spend somewhere between 18 months and 15 years in prison for the hit-and-run death of a popular nun as she was riding her bike; he tried to claim he’d hit a deer instead. So he could end up with a slap on the wrist, or some serious time. Or anything in between.

A New York cruiser bike rider complains that he can’t obey the requirement to ride to the right when the bike lanes are on the left side of a service road.

 

International

Treehugger says almost all successful cities are clamping down on private cars and promoting bikes. Which would suggest — or maybe confirm — that Los Angeles isn’t one.

Ontario, Canada is investing $93 million to expand bike infrastructure across the province.

A new report delivered to London’s mayor says the way to improve safety is to reduce speeds to 20 mph, fix potholes and give bike riders priority at intersections.

A London bike rider describes what it was like to be attacked by three muggers who punched him in the face and stole his Brompton, part of a trend of violent bike-jackings in the city.

Maybe there is a war on cars after all. Someone left large bricks and rocks on a UK highway, damaging dozens of cars.

A report from the British transportation agency says meeting the country’s goals for bicycling and walking could prevent 13,000 pollution deaths over the next ten years, and save the equivalent of over $12 billion.

Relatives of a fallen Belfast bike rider were angry that someone stole a bicycle painted in his club colors, which had been installed as a memorial; the bike was recovered after they made an appeal on Facebook.

Speaking of stolen Belfast bikes, a student who posted a noted asking the person who “borrowed” her bicycle to please return it didn’t get it back, but she did get a used bike from a kindhearted stranger.

Caught on video: An Aussie cyclist barely avoids sliding out into traffic after slipping on a wet sidewalk.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A new Australian campaign examines the ripple effect roadway trauma has on the victim’s families and communities.

Who needs a bike car on a train, when you can have an entire Japanese bike train?

 

Finally…

This is why you don’t blow through red lights. Please don’t throw dockless bikeshare bike in front of an oncoming train.

And how can drivers to avoid bike riders when they can’t even avoid a rock?

Thanks to Megan Lynch and Norm Bradwell for the last link.

 

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