BAC meets Tuesday — new location, new attention from police brass

L.A.’s Bicycle Advisory Committee, appointed by the city council members to advise them on bicycling issues, holds its next bi-monthly meeting tonight — with a promised appearance from high-ranking members of the LAPD.

The LAPD has been meeting with select members of the LACBC, Bikeside, the Bike Writers Collective, Sustainable Streets, LA Bike Working Group, IlluminateLA, the Voice Newspapers and the BAC to improve training for police officers on bike issues and cyclists’ right to the road.

Evidently, my invitation got lost in the mail.

However, this is your chance to voice your opinion on the often-troubled relationship between cyclists and police, as well as the hit-and-run epidemic and whether you get the support you need from the LAPD to feel safe on the streets of L.A. And what you think needs to be done to improve the situation.

Personally, I’m holding out for better training for accident investigators into the unique mechanics of cycling collisions, so they won’t conclude that any more cyclists backed into the cars that hit them. Or that a cyclist could break the laws of physics by falling to the left while leaning into a right turn, as they did in my case.

As well as never again concluding that it’s the cyclist’s fault when a rider collides with a car or truck that just right-hooked him, as recently happened in Long Beach.

Because no cyclist — not you, not me, not any of us — will be safe on the streets as long as the police continue to blame us for the actions of others.

There will also be discussion of the status of bike lane work on Winnetka Avenue, Reseda Boulevard and Rinaldi Avenue, as well as Main Street in Venice. Along with construction of the San Fernando Road Bike Path and extension of the L.A. River Bike Path.

The meeting starts at 7 pm at the Hollywood Neighborhood City Hall Community Room, 6501 Fountain Avenue in Hollywood.

According to BAC President Glenn Bailey:

Three bicycle parking racks are in front of the building on Fountain; there is also wrought iron fencing in the rear that can be used to lock up bicycles. Metro Red Line stations are located at Hollywood and Vine (closest) and Hollywood and Highland, both just a short bicycle ride away. There is also a motor vehicle parking lot directly behind the building (to the north).

I won’t be able to make it this time due to a prior commitment. Although I will be at the City Council Transportation Committee meeting on the 24th, when the theme will be Bike Safety — and we’re promised new LAPD Chief Beck will be present.

But I urge you to attend if you can make it to Hollywood tonight. Because it sounds like this BAC meeting will definitely be worth it.

………

The Bike Working Group proposes a Backbone Bikeway Network connecting every part of the city as part of their Best Bike Plan; now that’s more like it. LACBC reports on bike sharing, the proposed anti-harassment ordinance and speed limit increases. Damien Newton rides the DIY sharrows and lives, despite LADOT’s trepidations. Will offers his take on saving seconds by jumping the light. Pasadena plans to improve the popular Rose Bowl loop. A Los Gatos cyclist riding on the sidewalk is killed by an out-of-control driver. Bob Mionske says use a gun, go to jail; use a car, it’s called an accident. Bikes menace pedestrians on St. Augustine sidewalks. Three-time le Tour winner Greg LeMond settles his lawsuit against Trek, the former manufacturer of LeMond bikes. DC police order cyclists to get into a non-existent bike lane. Who has the right-of-way when joggers and cyclists meet head-on? An Ohio appeals court ruling concludes cyclists can’t be searched without individual probable cause. Tucson Bike Lawyer gets a new Dutch bike. An overview of the Dallas Bike Trail Network. SFPD once again prepares to take aim at Critical Mass. Winnipeg considers a $17 million, two-year bridge retrofit to protect cyclists and pedestrians; a local driver suggests it’s your fault if he loses control on icy streets and accidently kills you. A Queensland bike repairman suggests mandatory inspections to get dangerous bikes off the roads; I’m sure the extra work he’d get has nothing to do with it. Bicycling is back on the Emerald Isle, and so is bike theft. Motorists hate the new 30 kph (18 mph) speed limit in Dublin’s city center, while everyone else seems to love it. I have no idea what this says, except it has something to do with Lance Armstrong, Trek, Austin racer Bryan Fawley, an 83 kilometer mountain bike marathon called Miles of Discomfort and the Tour Down Under. Finally, the Swedish rapper who beat a Hollywood jazz musician unconscious before driving over him as an off-duty police officer hung on the door, begging him to stop, has been found guilty of 2nd degree murder.

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