Archive for January 31, 2014

Bicycle Commuter Festival and Summit, RAP x PVBC, Active Streets LA, Carnivale de Velo and a Sunday Funday

LABCFS_facebookBefore we get started on this week’s events, we’ve finally got more information about the previously announced Bicycle Commuter Festival and Summit.

The Sunday, February 15th festival — co-sponsored by AIDS/Lifecycle and the newly formed Bicycle Culture Institute — is aimed at anyone who is interested in bike commuting in the Los Angeles area, but has been reluctant to give it a try for whatever reason.

This festival is geared to anyone who isn’t yet confident about riding a bicycle in LA. But we’ve put together such an incredible roster of vendors, workshops and people that we know this will appeal to existing cycling communities – and that’s great because it gives us a chance to have fun together while learning about how to make the bicycle a desirable transportation choice,” says organizer Nona Varnado. “We’ve also worked with Good Eggs LA to make sure we’ve got healthy snacks including vegan and gluten free options.

Representatives from the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, CicLAvia, LA Bike Trains and SoCal Cross will be in attendance, along with commuter-focused bike shops Orange 20 and Flying Pigeon LA.

The $10 tickets are available in advance, as well as at the box office on the day of the event, and include full access to opening panel, workshops, both festival areas and light food/beverage.

It takes place from noon to 7 pm at the Village at Ed Gould Plaza, 1125 North McCadden Place.

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Bike Talk airs every Saturday at 10 am; listen to it live or download the podcast from KPFK.

Bike Long Beach hosts Bike Saturdays every weekend; ride your bike to participating local shops and business throughout the city to get special offers and discounts.

The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee, the city’s only official voice for bicyclists, meets on the first Tuesday of every even-numbered month; the next meeting takes place at 7 pm on Tuesday, February 4th at 6501 Fountain Ave.

The Pomona Valley Bicycle Coalition is hosting RAP x PVBC on Saturday, February 1st. The family friendly Ride Around Pomona departs from Thomas Plaza in Downtown Pomona at 8:30 am.

The next Active Streets LA event takes place on Saturday, February 1st from 10 am to 1:30 pm at Vermont Square Library and Park, 1201 W. 48th St. The event will include free raffle, snacks, beverages, family activities, bike safety skills training and community walk.

Bike-friendly fun unfolds in Venice on Saturday, February 1st, when Carnivale de Velo – A Bicycle Festival opens at noon. The family-friendly event promises food and drink, live music, and fun and games at Deus Ex Machina USA1001 Venice Blvd.

The LACBC hosts a regular Sunday Funday ride on the first Sunday of every month, free for members and a guest. This month’s edition is a Super Bowl Warm-Up Ride hosted by board member Greg Laemmle. The 20 mile ride will circle from the meeting point at the NoHo Metro Station, 5350 Lankershim Blvd, to Burbank, onto the L.A. River Bike Path, through Griffith Park. Meets at 10 am, rolling by 10:30 am and back by 2 pm, which should give you time to get to your viewing party. As for me, I’ll be rising early for a ritual sacrifice in support of my beloved Broncos.

On Wednesday, February 5th, Cynergy Cycles hosts a demo ride with lights from Light Motion and mountain bikes provided by Specialized. Meet at Cynergy Cycles, 2300 Santa Monica Blvd between 7 and 7:30 pm for a shuttle ride to the 1 to 1.5 hour beginner and intermediate group rides.

The annual Tour de Palm Springs takes place on Saturday, February 8th. Up to 30,000 cyclists from throughout the US and around the world will travel through the Coachella Valley on rides of five to 100 miles.

Saturday, February 8th, take a bike tour of Pomona Valley craft breweries. The unsponsored ride meets at the new Sanctum Brewing Company, E Commercial St & Paloma Dr in Pomona at 1:30 pm, before rolling to the Dale Bros Brewery and Claremont Craft Ales before returning.

The San Fernando Valley Bike Club offers a twice monthly Campagni Group Ride — Italian for companion — on the second and fourth Sunday of every month. The moderately paced, leader-led no-drop ride on February 9th offers 27 miles and just 482 feet of climbing, departing from the Northwest corner of Nordhoff and Etiwanda in Northridge (CSUN Parking Lot B1) at 8 am sharp. Click here for more details (footnote d); lots of other great sounding rides on the list, too.

C.I.C.L.E. offers two Learn to Ride for Adults classes on Sunday, February 9th, from 9 to 11 am and 11:30 am to 1:30 pm. Both classes take place in the parking lot of Eagle Rock Plaza, 2700 Colorado Blvd; tickets are $30, need-based fee waivers are available.

On November 27th of last year, David Enright was riding his bike on Eagle Rock Blvd when he was hit by an unlicensed and uninsured driver, breaking his left forearm, right elbow and clavicle, and fracturing his pelvis in seven places. His friends have set up a fundraising website to help defray his expenses and lost wages; a donation of just $40 gets you into a party at 8 pm on Sunday, February 9th at the Record Parlour in Hollywood, 6408 Selma Ave.

Monday, February 10th the Los Feliz Improvement Association presents Law & Order in Los Feliz, a discussion with LA City Attorney Mike Feuer and LAPD Northeast Division Police Captain Jeffery Bert, 6 pm at the Autry Museum, 4700 Western Heritage Way. Considering how the flyer equates homelessness, crime, noise and bicyclists, maybe you might want to attend if you’re in the area.

The next Metro Bicycle Roundtable meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, February 11th from 5:30 to 7 pm in the Gateway Plaza Conference Room on the 3rd floor of Metro Headquarters, One Gateway Plaza. Topics include status updates on bike share, bicycle campaigns and planning studies.

The movie that got me back into bicycling will screen on Wednesday, February 12th as the Laemmle Theaters show the classic bike movie Breaking Away as a fundraiser for the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition’s Operation Firefly to put lights on everyone’s bikes; 7:30 pm at the Laemmle NoHo 75240 Lankershim Blvd in North Hollywood.

Celebrate a belated Valentines Day with Ride for Love: Explore the Changes of Watts, co-sponsored by Metro, C.I.C.L.E. and the East Side Riders. The ride will share love, community, and the joy of bicycling while exploring the history and changes of Watts; meet at 9:30 am at 10950 S. Central Ave.

Bike Newport Beach is hosting a Lunch in Laguna Beach Valentines Ride on Saturday, February 15th. Meet at the Newport Beach Civic Center for the 10 am, 18.3 mile moderately paced ride, returning about three hours later.

The first Los Angeles Bicycle Commuter Festival and Summit takes place on Sunday, February 16th from noon to 8 pm at The Village at Ed Gould Plaza, 1125 N. McCadden Placetickets $10.

Also on the 16th, a fundraising ride from Pasadena to Silverlake will be held to benefit injured cyclist David Enright (see February 9th for more information). The ride will depart from Intelligentsia Coffee Bar in Pasadena at 10 am, riding by historical landscapes, quiet ravines, bustling neighborhoods, and the breathtaking Silverlake Reservoir, ending at the flagship Inteligensia in Silverlake. Suggested sponsorship is $200, however, sponsorship is not mandatory; all proceeds go to help Enright’s long road to recovery.

Get ready to get jiggy wit it as the LACBC invites you to celebrate their 16th birthday with a 1998-themed Bike Prom from 8 pm to midnight on Saturday, February 22nd at the American Legion Post 206, 227 N. Ave. 55 in Highland Park; earlybird tickets are $8 for LACBC members and $16 for nonmembers before February 7th.

Chinatown’s annual Firecracker Ride takes place on Saturday, February 22nd with rides of 20 and 30 miles943 North Broadway.

The LABC’s West Bike Ambassadors host a leisurely ride through Venice and Mar Vista on Sunday, February 23rd; the eight to ten mile ride starts at the Mar Vista farmer’s market at the intersection of Venice Blvd and Grand View at 10 am.

The San Fernando Valley Bike Club offers a twice monthly Campagni Group Ride — Italian for companion — on the second and fourth Sunday of every month. The moderately paced, leader-led no-drop ride on February 23rd offers a choice of 25 or 52 miles around Chatsworth Lake, departing from the Northwest corner of Nordhoff and Etiwanda in Northridge (CSUN Parking Lot B1) at 8 am sharp. Click here for more details (footnote d); lots of other great sounding rides on the list, too.

The 2nd Annual Bike Oven Fundraiser Auction takes place on Saturday, March 1st from 5 to 10 pm, 706 North Figueroa St. Donations of any kind are welcome, from auction items to refreshments.

Sunday, March 9th marks the return of the LA Marathon — and the world-famous Wolfpack Hustle: The Marathon Crash Race. As always, the ride meets at 3 am at Tang’s Donuts, 4341 W Sunset Blvd, rolling at 4 am through the closed marathon course to the coast.

C.I.C.L.E. hosts The Way Back When Ride: La Puente, co-sponsored by Metro and Bike SGV, on Saturday, March 15th. The family-friendly, leisurely paced ride meets at 10:30 am at the Park-N-Ride Lot at Stafford Street and Glendora Avenue in the City of Industry, rolling at 11 am.

Also on Saturday, March 15th, give your legs a test with the annual Malibu Seven Canyon Classic, with routes ranging from 50 to 100 miles, including a new fast, flat route along the coast. All rides start at 8 am.

Finish up the day with the first Streetsblog fundraiser of the year from 6 to 9 pm on Saturday, March 15th as they honor Streetsie Award winner Paul Backstrom, Transportation Deputy to Westside Councilmember Mike Bonin. The event, with a suggested donation of $100, will include Indian food, beer, wine and non-alcoholic beverages; location provided upon RSVP to Damien@streetsblog.org.

The National Open Streets Summit is scheduled for Friday, April 4th through Sunday, April 6th in Los Angeles.

The next CicLAvia is scheduled for Sunday, April 6th on iconic Wilshire Blvd, LA’s historic main street. The free event rolls and walks from Downtown to the Miracle Mile with expanded hours from 9 am to 4 pm.

Fans of the Amgen Tour of California can ride the same official Stage 8 course the pros will when the L’Etape du California rolls on Sunday, April 6th in Thousand Oaks. Entry is limited to the first 1,500 riders to register.

The American Diabetes Association’s Tour de Cure Ship to Shore ride takes place on Sunday, April 27th at the Queen Mary, 1126 Queen’s Highway in Long Beach. Rides range from eight to 100 miles, with a $200 fundraising minimum.

On February 17th of last year, Damian Kevitt was hit by a minivan while riding his bike in Griffith Park. The driver attempted to flee the scene with Kevitt trapped under the vehicle, dragging him nearly 600 feet onto the 5 Freeway and leaving him for dead; the resulting injuries cost him a leg, and nearly took his life. On Sunday, April 27th, Kevitt is planning to finish the ride to raise funds for the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition and the Challenged Athletes Foundation.

The Ride 2 Recovery to benefit wounded vets returns to Southern California on Saturday, May 3rd in Thousand Oaks. The ride departs from the Lost Hills Sheriff Station, 27050 Agoura Hills Road, starting at 8 am; no cost for injured vets.

Mark your calendar for Glendale’s 2nd Annual Jewel City Fun & Fitness Ride on Sunday, May 18th, with rides ranging from seven to 45 miles.

LA’s most popular fundraising bike ride rolls on Sunday, June 22nd with the 14th edition of the LACBC’s Los Angeles River Ride. Ten rides of varying lengths, with starting points in Long Beach and Griffith Park, including two centuries, a 15-mile family ride and a free kid’s ride; discount prices available through May 27th.

Mark your calendar for the Peace Love & Family Ride for Crohn’s and Obesity in South LA on July 5th and 6th. Great cause; more details when they become available.

The year’s second CicLAvia takes place on Sunday, October 5th with a new variation on the classic Heart of LA route through Downtown LA, from Echo Park to East LA.

The first winter — or late fall, anyway — CicLAvia is also the first to roll through historic South LA on Sunday, December 7th, from the cultural center of the Southside in Leimert Park to the birthplace of West Coast Jazz on Central Avenue.

Find bike racing schedules and other cycling events at SoCal Cycling.

It’s getting scary out there — dogs attack Pasadena bike rider; driver flees police with bike dangling from car

A Pasadena cyclist walking his bike barely avoided serious injury when he was attacked by three apparently road raging dogs.

He was smart enough to place his bike between himself and the raging pit bulls, then jumped onto the hood of a car for protection. Police shot all three dogs, killing one; the rider suffered minor bite punctures.

If they shot humans for attacking cyclists, there might not be many drivers left.

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Horrifying video footage shows a car fleeing police in Laguna Beach with a bicycle dangling from its side, leading to speculation that it was a hit-and-run.

Fortunately, no victim has yet appeared. Other reports suggest the bike may have started out on a rack on the car before it was knocked off in the pursuit.

Thanks to Steve Messer and sonofabike for the heads-up.

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KTLA-5 offers a look at Ghost Bikes. Maybe if more people understand what they are, we might not need so many of them.

Thanks to Lois Horwitz for the link.

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Charges in the case of Donald Johnson, the Calimesa driver arrested for the hit-and-run death of Philip Richards earlier this month, have been upgraded to gross vehicular manslaughter and fleeing the scene of a vehicular manslaughter; bond has been increased to $1 million.

In addition, his wife, Kerri Johnson, has been arrested on a charge of accessory after the fact for aiding in the coverup.

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Bikes lanes are now a near certainty on the Glendale-Hyperion bridge, after serious blowback from pissed off advocates; now the fight is to get sidewalks on both sides. Bicycle Fixation’s Rick Risemberg gets it; whatever you wear to ride — or play social games — is okay. On the other hand, the LAPD clearly doesn’t. The next Metro Bicycle Roundtable is scheduled for Tuesday, February 11th. Former DA and current mayoral dad Gil Garcetti talks Paris: Women & Bicycles. Yes, you really can live car-free in Los Angeles. Pedicabs could be coming to Hollywood and San Pedro; a previous trial in Westwood failed, just like every other business seems to do there sooner or later. UCLA Bicycle Academy rightfully demands better safety and access; but is anyone listening? The LACBC’s Operation Firefly distributes bike lights in Long Beach. Hawthorne approves $11 million renovation of Hawthorne Blvd, including bike lanes; thanks to Margaret for the tip.

Independent review says Caltrans is out of date, operating out of a culture of fear and acting too much like the highway department it is and not the mobility department it should be; I could have told them that. Newport Beach’s proposed bike plan can now be viewed online. San Diego’s planned bike share program has been delayed until Spring; it should still beat LA’s by a few years, at least. San Francisco woman does everything wrong, but still gets her stolen bike back — $260 later. San Francisco’s cycle tracks are paving the way for safer cycling throughout the state. Caltrans approves $2.7 million for a Monterey bike lane. Mountain View man is busted with a truck full of hot bikes. A Redding man is seriously injured in a possible BUI solo crash.

New bi-partisan bill in Congress would bring equity to bike and pedestrian funding, as well as boosting funding for bike and pedestrian projects in low income communities. It takes a real schmuck to steal a bike from someone suffering from Parkinson’s. The law is stacked against bike riders in Alaska; there are reasons Alaskans ride year round, though. Wounded warriors mountain bike to recovery in Las Vegas. Fear and loathing in Las Vegas, as a German reporter attempts to cover CES by bike. The hit-and-run victim killed near my hometown turns out to be a gifted elected motor scientist who could breath fire; no, really. The good get better, as Denver bridges gaps for cyclists and pedestrians. Fort Bliss Afghan vet rides his way back from battlefield injuries. Infamous bike lane hater and tweeter Anthony Weiner now rides them; bike lanes, not tweets. NYPD targets drivers and jaywalkers in a traffic safety crackdown; evidently, cyclists are still fair game. Freezing temperatures don’t stop DC cyclists. Baltimore police ignore evidence and the law to illegally blame a bicyclists. A Chattanooga cyclist takes the local paper to task in the wake of a teenage assault on a bike rider.

The Vancouver bike rider assaulted by a road raging driver tells his side of the story. The death of a British cyclist has turned into a murder investigation. London finally bans large trucks without pedestrian and cyclist safety features; vehicles that kill by design should never be allowed on the road, anywhere. Forty-two-year old Chris Horner, the oldest Grand Tour winner, gets a ride for 2014. Spanish cyclist riding through Pakistan denies reports six policemen were killed protecting him. Family of Japanese woman killed in collision with cyclist awarded equivalent of nearly half-a-million dollars. Sydney’s bi-directional bikeways take the wrong path.

Finally, outgoing County Supervisor Zev Yaroslovsky profiles LACBC board member, bike advocate and alternative transportation fan Greg Laemmle; they couldn’t feature a nicer or more deserving guy.

City Council PLUM committee punts on My Figueroa; major sub-human scum steal an autistic girl’s e-bike

Four years ago Bill Rosendahl fought for bike riders; will anyone step up now?

Four years ago Bill Rosendahl fought for bike riders; will anyone step up now?

Four years ago, former Councilmember Bill Rosendahl famously declared the era of LA car culture was over.

Yesterday’s meeting of the City Council’s Planning and Land Use Committee head-scratchingly yawned otherwise, as a car dealer and seemingly confused councilmember teamed to throw a monkey wrench into plans for cycle tracks on South Figueroa.

The long-planned and bid-ready My Figueroa has been delayed, perhaps fatally, by the owner of the Felix Chevrolet group of car dealerships, who inexplicably claims to support the project while simultaneously threatening to sue to stop it.

And by Councilmember Curren Price, who has previously proclaimed his support for bicycling, as well as the Figueroa cycle tracks, but now wants further study of a project that has already been studied to death, and consideration of options that have already been rejected for good reason.

And let’s not forget a little bike hate from Hollywood thrown in for good measure, which wants to keep parking their trucks on the street instead of paying for parking like every other Angeleno. Evidently, they’re not satisfied with merely watering down our formerly effective Spring Street green bike lanes, and won’t stop until they’ve turned the entire city into their exclusive back lot.

As Damien Newtown put it on Streetsblog, the project needs a hero.

Unfortunately, Rosendahl has retired. And no one, as yet, has stepped up to claim his mantle in fighting for the rights and safety of LA cyclists on the city council.

The vacuum that exists at the top of the LADOT flowchart means no one there will take on the fight, as the mayor continues to drag his feet on appointing a permanent leader for the department, and prime candidates like New York’s Janette Sadik Khan and Chicago’s Gabe Klein move on to less problematic pastures.

Meanwhile, the mayor himself has yet to publicly take a stand in support of bicycling, other than to sign on to the city’s application to the Green Lane Project — which could be jeopardized by the turmoil over My Figueroa.

That follows other city leaders washing their hands of cyclists, as Westside Councilmember Paul Koretz killed planned bike lanes on Westwood Blvd, and self-proclaimed bike-friendly Councilmember Tom LaBonge has single-handedly stopped major bike projects on 4th Street and Lankershim Blvd, while supporting a killer redesign of the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge complex.

Meanwhile, newly elected Councilmember Gil Cedillo has inexplicably halted all progress on shovel-ready bike lanes on North Figueroa that he previously supported, apparently in a fit of pique directed at his predecessor.

The only action taken by the committee on Tuesday was to ask city staff to study the issues they’ve already studied, using money that has already been spent.

And to report back in 30 days to explain why they recommend what they’ve already recommended.

Maybe it will be enough political Kabuki theater to suggest to opponents that the council members really did consider their objections before going forward with what they should have gone forward with anyway.

Or maybe Koretz, LaBonge and Cedillo will step up and battle for bike lanes, as long as they’re not in their own districts.

And maybe that bacon I had earlier in the week will reconstitute into its original porcine form and aviate out of my ass.

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In a major display of sub-human greed, a pair of lowlife schmucks have stolen a custom-made tandem e-bike from a severely autistic 12-year old girl.

The bike has a raised seat back and seatbelt that allows the girl, a double transplant recipient, to ride a bike, which would otherwise be impossible for her. And which render the bike pretty much useless for anyone else.

It was stolen November 30th at 2:32 am from a home in the 4200 block of Marina City Drive in Marina del Rey. Surveillance video shows two men — if you can call them that — carrying the bike over a locked gate at the Marina City Club condo complex.

Chances are, after two months, the bike — which was donated by the Make-A-Wish Foundation — has long been stripped and sold as parts. But the jerks who stole it are still around somewhere, and need to be taken off the streets.

For a very long time.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Sheriff’s Detective Keysha Gipson at the Marina del Rey Sheriff’s Station, 310-482-6022.

Thanks to Cynthia Rose for the heads-up.

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The LA Weekly begs to differ with the LA Times Op-Ed about the living hell Santa Monica has become. Because of, you know, bikes.

Evidently, all those cars streaming in and out of the city have no effect on traffic. Or livability, for that matter.

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Britain’s advertising authority bans a Scottish bike safety commercial because 1) it features a cyclist riding without a helmet, and 2) the rider doesn’t cling dangerously to the gutter in an attempt to ride as far right as possible.

The Guardian rightly asks, are they daft?

Note: As Nik points out, that should be “ride as far left as possible.”

Update: In the face of massive blowback, the ruling on road positioning has been suspended; the ruling on helmet use appears to remain in force, even though helmets are not required in the UK.

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Finally, Bangkok closes key intersections to become the Copenhagen of the east, even if bikes can hide bombs; thanks to Vanessa Gray for the link.

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Thanks to Erik Griswold for his generous donation to help support this site; contributions of any amount are deeply appreciated.

Guest Column: Bikes Have Rights™*

Today marks the beginning of the new sponsor-supported BikinginLA.

In addition to advertising on this site, our first sponsor, Jim Pocrass of the law firm Pocrass & De Los Reyes, has agreed to write a semi-regular Wednesday column on the legal rights of bicyclists.

After talking bike law with him on several occasions, I can assure you he knows his stuff. In fact, the column below matches my own experience, when a bad police report resulted in the insurance company rejecting my claim when I was injured by a road raging driver.

So I hope you’ll join me in welcoming Jim to BikinginLA. And take his advice to heart — if it could happen to me, it could happen to anyone.

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Police Reports: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Jim Pocrass, Pocrass & De Los Reyes LLP

Jim Pocrass, Pocrass & De Los Reyes LLP

By James L. Pocrass, Esq.

Pocrass & De Los Reyes LLP
 

I recently took a Malibu bike accident case in which the driver of a motor vehicle made a left turn into the cyclist. The accident happened at dusk; it was not dark out yet. The police report states that the cyclist was cited for “unsafe speed conditions” because he was wearing all black.

Police blaming the cyclist for the accident is not unusual. I don’t think I have ever had a bike accident case – and I have represented hundreds of cyclists – in which the police report did not blame the bicyclist. Nevertheless, it is important that you file a police report if you are in a bike accident.

Though police officers are often biased against cyclists, they usually get the facts of an accident correct. Such details of the accident:  the time, place, weather, what direction each participant was going and where they were located when the accident happened, contact information for witnesses, confirmation of insurance, and any physical evidence at the scene, is usually recorded correctly.

It is the police officer’s conclusion that is typically wrong. Though I would much rather police officers would lose their cyclist bias, filing a police report is still beneficial to your legal case and to your insurance claim because it sets out in writing the basic facts.

Police reports with tainted conclusions may make the handling of your case or insurance claim more difficult, but the police report and the opinions and conclusions of the police officer are not admissible in court. They are all considered hearsay.

The problem comes in when the insurance company reads the police report and accepts the officer’s conclusions. They may refuse to settle your case or offer you much less compensation than which you are entitled. The result is that we have to file a lawsuit, gather evidence, and take the police officer’s deposition to prove the officer was wrong. Frequently it is during or after the deposition stage that the insurance company will offer to settle the case to avoid going to court.

So if you are in a bike collision, file a police report. In quite a few cities – including the City of Los Angeles – if you say you are not injured (and you should NEVER comment on injuries or guilt), a police officer will not come to the scene. In that situation, you need to go to the police station at your earliest opportunity (even sooner than that), and file a police report. Get the facts on the record.

Remember, filing a police report does not mean you have to file a legal case. It can assist you in collecting compensation for damages you incurred in the bike collision and, should you decide to take legal action later, it will be an important tool to give your bike accident lawyer as he is pursuing your case.

*California Vehicle Code 21200: A person riding a bicycle or operating a pedicab upon a highway has all the rights and is subject to all the provisions applicable to the driver of a vehicle. . .

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For more than 25 years, Jim Pocrass has represented people who were seriously injured, or families who lost a loved one in a wrongful death, due to the carelessness or negligence of another. Jim is repeatedly named to Best Lawyers in America and to Southern California Super Lawyers lists for the outstanding results he consistently achieves for his clients. Having represented hundreds of cyclists during his career, and Jim’s own interest in cycling, have resulted in him becoming a bicycle advocate. He is a board member of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition.  For a free, no-obligation consultation, contact Jim Pocrass at 310.550.9050 or at info@pocrass.com.

Help a badly wounded rider get back on his feet, BAC Bikeways subcommittee minutes, and ride with Greg Laemmle

There’s no shortage of good causes these days, especially when it comes to bicycling.

But this one really deserves your attention.

On November 27th of last year, David Enright was riding his bike to pick up a U-Haul to start a new life in Seattle with his fiancé.

That’s when his life nearly ended.

As he crossed the intersection of Eagle Rock Blvd and Avenue 36 around 10:50 am, a car ran the red light and hit him from the side. Enright suffered a broken left forearm, right elbow and clavicle, as well as seven factures to his pelvis; he credits his helmet for sparing him from head injuries.

Do I really need to add that the driver was unlicensed and had no insurance?

Enright spent the past two months confined to a hospital bed, unable to move. Two weeks ago, he was finally released, though confined to a wheelchair, and immediately began the long and painful road to rehabilitation.

Friends say he has the strength, in both mind and body, to make it all the way back. On the other hand, that new life he was starting hasn’t exactly gone the way he planned.

In addition to crushing medical costs, he’s looking at a full year of lost wages and legal fees, as well as unexpected housing and storage costs.

And that’s where you come in.

A fundraising page has been established in his name. Donate just $40, and you’ll receive entry and drink tickets to a fundraising party at The Record Parlour in Hollywood on Sunday, February 9th.

One week later, a fundraising ride will roll from Intelligentsia Coffee Bar in Pasadena to the flagship Inteligensia in Silverlake, passing through historical landscapes, quiet ravines, bustling neighborhoods, and around the breathtaking Silverlake Reservoir. Suggested sponsorship is $200, however, sponsorship is not mandatory.

All proceeds go to help Enright’s long road to recovery.

Like I said, it’s a good cause.

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It’s also hard to keep up with all the important bike meetings in and around the City of Angels these days.

One of the most important is the work being done by the city’s Bicycle Advisory Committee, particularly the Bikeways Subcommittee.

That’s why I’m pleased to share the minutes of their most recent meeting:

Bicycle Advisory Committee of the City of Los Angeles
Bikeways Subcommittee
MINUTES
Sunland Room, LADOT, 100 Main St., Los Angeles CA
Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014, 1-3 PM

1. Call to Order

2. Introduction of Subcommittee members and City staff

In attendance: Jeff Jaccobberger (BAC Chair), Herbie Huff (BAC Bikeways Subcom Chair), Jonathan Weiss (BAC Advocacy and Education Subcom Chair), Michelle Mowery, Nate Baird (LADOT Bicycle Outreach and Planning), Tim Fremeaux, Paul Meshkin, Carlos Rodriguez (LADOT Bikeways Engineering), David Somers (LADCP), Dennis Hindman (public)

3. Current bike lane designs for review

a. 48th St: Crenshaw Blvd to Normandie Ave

This is an HSIP project being led by Carlos Rios. It’s a road diet with a new signal at 11th. Design work will be completed in February.  

b. Lakme Ave: M St to G St

b, d, e, g, are all in a package in Wilmington. Most of these are ‘drop-in’ bike lanes that don’t require lane removal. Some of these projects are adding a center-turn lane. Most of these neighborhoods are residential, and some are mixed light industrial. Bike lanes have had a lot of support and success in this working-class community, and the department is looking forward to seeing the results of implementing a network of bike lanes here.

c. Loyola Blvd: Westchester Pkwy to Lincoln Blvd

This is a small section. Someone asked about a portion of an existing bike lane here, where current department practice would dictate the addition of painted buffers to the bike lane, but there are no such buffers. Tim Fremeaux noted that historical bike lanes are updated opportunistically with repaving.

d. McDonald Ave: Denni St to C St

e. Denni St: Fries Ave. to Banning Blvd.

f. San Vicente Blvd: Beverly Blvd. to Burton Wy. (E/B) Wilshire Blvd. (W/B)

Design of this bike lane discussed at a previous Bikeways Subcom meeting. The reason for the varying extents is that the E/B side is in the City of Beverly Hills. Tim has verified that Beverly Hills has the right-of-way to implement a bike lane. LADOT has shared the plans with the City of Beverly Hills.

g. St: Wilmington Blvd. to Watson Ave.

h. Valley Vista Blvd: Woodvale Rd. to Sherman Oaks Ave

i. San Vicente Blvd: Redondo Blvd. to La Brea Ave.

This is a short addition on a repaved segment, to add to bike lanes the department recently painted on the lower section of San Vicente.

4. Exposition Neighborhood Greenway

Because of the adjacent City park planned as a part of the Westwood Neighborhood Greenway, BAC member Jonathan Weiss wanted to determine the precise location of the Expo Bike Path between Westwood and Overland. Project lead Carlos Rodriguez explained that the bike path will be basically adjacent to the Metro ROW and the train tracks, running along the soundwall (with a 5’ landscaping buffer) and minimizing the disruption to the park. There will be a parallel pedestrian path on the park side of the bikeway which will act as an access route to the park.

5. Cesar Chavez: Mission to Sunset

The department is planning to add a bike facility here. This will be a difficult project, for which there is no off-the-shelf design. Some of it will be a continuation of the bus lanes on Sunset Blvd. Hill to Mission is the difficult section. The intersection at Vignes will be especially tricky because this is the location with the most bus boardings in the City, even more than in Patsaouras Plaza. The eastbound bus stop on Chavez at Vignes sees over 100 buses an hour. Tim shared a preliminary idea which is to add bike lanes on the bridge with turn lane removal. Jonathan Weiss recommended barriers in the tunnel similar to the ones that were recently implemented on 2nd St.

6. Wayfinding sign project – opportunity for input on sign placement

LADOT will release a public version of the location of the signs soon via the bike blog. BAC members should look for any errors and do basic fact-checking in their districts.

7. 20 mile sharrow package – discussion and opportunity for input

LADOT shared a draft sharrow package. BAC members felt all the streets were well chosen. Herbie will give Gregg Spotts from BSS a call about the fact that 4th St. sharrows need to be replaced after being slurried over. The request would be that if streets to be slurried can be known in advance, LADOT can wait until they are slurried before laying down the sharrows.

8. Approval of next meeting date: Weds, 3/19/2014

Please note that meetings will be on the 3rd Wednesday rather than the 1st Wednesday from now on.

9. General Public Comment

A few other notes:

DCP is looking to create a data unit in response to the Mayor’s emphasis on metrics.

DOT bikeways staffing is an issue. The department has requested an additional position in Bikeways Outreach and Planning this year’s city budget. BAC members and advocates should follow the budget to see if this is granted by the Mayor’s office.

10. Adjourn

……….

More on Francisco Alvarez, the 78-year old Glendora rider who died after he was hit by a car last week; the devoted grandfather was a popular Spanish Language poet with over 3,600 sonnets and other poems.

……….

LACBC board member Greg Laemmle is once again leading the bike coalition’s entry for the annual Climate Ride. Tell them why you want to ride with Greg, and you could win free entry to the ride, $2500 towards your fundraising commitment, and an Unlimited Laemmle Movie Pass for the remainder of this year.

……….

A new LA bike commuter is born. Writing for the Eastsider LA, Severin Martinez of Walk Eagle Rock says it’s time to take traffic safety seriously in Northeast LA; actually, it’s long past time to take it seriously everywhere. Broadway traffic lanes will be reduced from six to three in order to improve livability in the heart of Downtown. Valley Councilmember Bob Blumenfield leads a successful community ride in his district; hopefully this will inspire other councilmembers to lead rides in their own districts. Streetsblog adds more details to the story of hit-and-run victim Damian Kevitt’s Finish the Ride event on April 27th; they also say Mayor Eric Garcetti’s support of the city’s application for the Green Lane Project means he now has skin in the game for My Figueroa. The People St. parklet program goes citywide this week.

Ghost bikes are multiplying in the Inland Empire. Sixteen-year old San Diego bike rider injured when he’s hit by a 76-year old driver. Police ask for help tracking down the driver who ran down a Santee cyclist last week; fortunately, the rider was not seriously injured, though his bike looks badly mangled. The Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition launches a Youth Bicycle Fleet. Sacramento bartender faces DUI and vehicular manslaughter charges for killing a cyclist last April. Sounds like authorities are taking this one seriously for a change, as an El Dorado County driver is booked on $1 million bail after disappearing on a warrant for the suspected DUI death of a cyclist last year.

A blogger falls in love with bicycling. Scary collision as a resting Seattle cyclist is slightly injured after being knocked off an overpass. For the first time I can recall, a bicycle is part of the traditional mayors’ Super Bowl bet. A Tucson filmmaker says it’s time to let women ride in the Tour de France; past time, if you ask me. Clearly, hit-and-run is not just an LA problem, as police seek the motorist who killed a cyclist near my hometown. Bicycle tourism is starting to have an effect on businesses’ bottom lines in Montana. San Antonio artists create breathtaking underpass chandeliers from bike parts. Chicago merchants are discovering bike lanes are good for business. Northwestern University students develop a smart bike to help prevent collisions.

The Times of London absurdly claims bike riders pose as much risk to pedestrians as motorists do; yeah, that’s one way of looking at it. Indian MAMILS put pedal to the metal. The bike racing season is off and running as Aussie Simon Gerrans wins the Tour Down Under.

Finally, this is why you don’t want to tempt fate: minutes after pointing out to a riding companion where he’d want his ashes scattered, a UK rider is killed in a solo fall. And a writer for Outside magazine says it’s time to fight back — metaphorically, if not literally — against jerks who attack cyclists.

Lots of news — SaMo Blvd bike lanes, CicLAvia 2014, misguided SaMo Op-Ed piece, possible Olin charges

Sold out auditorium for the recent Southern California Cycling Summit; see below.

Sold out auditorium for the recent Southern California Cycling Summit; see below.

Let’s catch up on some of the recent news.

……….

First up, Westside riders owe a big thanks to Mark Elliott of Better Bike.

Elliot has led the fight — almost single-handedly at times — to improve safety and ridability in the traditionally bike-unfriendly Biking Black Hole of Beverly Hills.

A comparison to a lone salmon swimming upstream would be putting it mildly; the mythical Sisyphus would be more apt.

Yet somehow Elliot persevered, resulting in a 1-year “pilot program” to install bike lanes on Burton Way, and bike lanes and sharrows on North Crescent Drive. While I’ve never had cause to ride Crescent, the Burton Way bike lanes have become my favored eastbound route out of the city — when I’m willing to risk my life riding through Downtown Beverly Hills to get there.

For the past year or more, Elliot has led the fight to include bike lanes on a reconstructed Santa Monica Blvd when it goes under the knife in 2015, providing a vital missing link between existing lanes in West Hollywood and Century City.

Despite overwhelming odds and the opposition of the city’s paid consultant and members of the Blue-Ribbon Committee established to study the issue, his efforts have once again carried the day, winning approval by a 9-2 vote of the committee.

Then again, the fight isn’t over yet.

The committee’s recommendation now goes to the Beverly Hills City Council for approval next month, on a date to be determined. Hopefully, we’ll get enough advance notice of the meeting to show up and voice our support.

But for the first time, it looks like we might actually get a near-continuous Santa Monica bike lane stretching from the 405 in West LA to east of La Cienga in WeHo. And we have him to thank for it.

Of course, there still are problems to be solved.

……….

Next up is the newly announced CicLAvia schedule for 2014.

This year offers three of the exceptionally popular Open Streets events, minus last year’s overly crowded CicLAvia to the Sea and the long-rumored San Fernando Valley CicLAvia. Both are promised for next year, though the former may see a reconfigured route to overcome some of the problems that resulted in near-impassible blocks of bike-congestion on Venice Blvd.

Yet even with just three events on the calendar, it looks like a strong line-up.

The Iconic Wilshire Boulevard route returns on Sunday, April 6th, once again following LA’s main street from Downtown to the Miracle Mile — although Mark Elliot has hinted that Beverly Hills might like to get in on the action. The route visits some of the city’s finest architecture and historical sites, as called out in this guide from the Militant Angeleno.

CicLAvia takes the summer off — perhaps because that Valley route fell through? — before returning with a reconfigured Heart of LA route through the Downtown area on October 5th. This year’s route extends from Echo Park to East LA, as well as traveling the length of Broadway from 9th to Chinatown, with a stop at the relatively new Grand Park.

Finally, the first holiday season CicLAvia will take place on December 7th, with its first full foray into South LA. The route will range from Leimert Park, the cultural center of the Southside, to Central Avenue, the birthplace of West Coast Jazz and home of the legendary Dunbar Hotel. Can’t wait to read the Militant’s guide to this one.

Of course, the question is, does any of this really matter?

And the answer is, of course it does. In ways that many of us, myself included, may not have realized.

LA Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne has written what may be the best and most insightful analysis of what CicLAvia is and can be. And the role it plays in transforming our city for the better.

It’s a must read.

Just don’t read the comments.

……….

On the opposite side of the coin, there’s this misguided Times opinion piece from a long-time resident of Santa Monica, who blames bikes and urban planning for all the traffic problems in the city.

In it, he laments the young urbanites who have invaded his city, while simultaneously proclaiming that the majority of the city’s 92,000 residents can’t ride bikes and live too far to walk to the city’s newly hip urban core.

So wait.

Despite the influx of moneyed young people, most city residents are too out of shape — or maybe just too lazy — to get on a bicycle? They can’t be too old, given the number of riders I know in their 70s, 80s and even 90s who somehow manage to ride on a regular basis.

And if no one can ride, where do all those casual bike riders come from?

As someone who used to work in the city over decade ago, I can testify that Santa Monica’s traffic problems existed years before more than a handful of bike lanes appeared on the street. It frequently took me over an hour to drive the 6.5 miles from my beachside office to my apartment just 6.5 miles to the east — and not because of any bikes on the streets.

And don’t even get me started on virtually impassible Lincoln Blvd, which has long been avoided by bicyclists — despite being a designated bike route — because of the heavy automotive traffic.

Then he complains about bicyclists who position themselves in traffic — “because they can!” — moments after complaining about the bike lanes that move riders safely out of the way.

For someone who claims to have lived in Santa Monica for nearly three decades, he doesn’t seem to understand the city very well.

Or urban planning, for that matter.

Or bicycling, at all.

……….

The investigation into the December 8th death of cyclist, entertainment lawyer and former Napster exec Milt Olin is nearly complete. According to the LA Times, the case will be presented to the District Attorney to determine whether charges will be filed.

The Daily News reports the Sheriff’s Deputy who killed Olin when his patrol car somehow drifted into the bike lane on Mulholland Hwy could face a charge of vehicular manslaughter, or possibly even felony manslaughter.

“Could” being the key word.

It’s also possible, if not probable, that the DA will decline to file charges based on the evidence presented by the Sheriff’s investigators. And no word on whether charges will be filed against the department if it’s found that the deputy was following policy by using the onboard computer in his patrol car while driving, as some have suggested.

And while the department has gone out of its way to stress the independence of the investigation and deny any special treatment, they have guaranteed that the results will be second guessed — no matter what they conclude — by investigating a death involving their own deputy, rather than turning it over to an outside agency such as the CHP.

……….

The Metro Board approved a motion calling on the transit agency to look into a countywide bike share program (Item 58).

While there’s no guarantee such a program will actually be approved, it could provide deep pockets to back the system, while avoiding the Balkanization caused by competing and possibly incompatible programs in various cities.

………

(L-R) Anthony Reguero, President PTE Events, Chris Carmichael, author Time-Crunched Cyclist, Rahsaan Bahati, President Bahati Foundation and Michael Bell, Oakley.

(L-R) Anthony Reguero, President PTE Events, Chris Carmichael, author Time-Crunched Cyclist, Rahsaan Bahati, President Bahati Foundation and Michael Bell, Oakley.

I received a press release this past weekend from the Bahati Foundation about the SoCal Cycling Summit 2014, held at Oakley Headquarters in Foothill Ranch, CA.

Unfortunately, I found out about it long after the January 14th event was over.

I say unfortunately because I’m a big fan of the efforts of the foundation, founded by former National Criterium champ Rahsaan Bahati, to bring the joy of bicycling to inner city youths.

And because I would have enjoyed hearing from famed cycling coach Chris Carmichael, author of The Time-Crunched Cyclist.

Summit attendees representing a diversified audience that ran the gamut– Olympic medalists, serious weekend enthusiasts as well as international competitors, filled the 400-seat amphitheater to hear Carmichael discuss his revolutionary time-crunched cyclist technique. “The SoCal Cycling Summit is a wonderful platform for our foundation to share its vision in providing assistance to inner-city youth through cycling,” said Rahsaan Bahati, founder Bahati Foundation.

“Athletes want to stay engaged in the sports they love, but it can be a difficult balance for working parents and career professionals. The time-crunched athlete program is a new approach to endurance training, one that actually takes advantage of a busy athlete’s limited training time. It’s been successful for tens of thousands of athletes, and I look forward to sharing the program with everyone at the SoCal Cycling Summit,” stated Carmichael.

Maybe next year.

………

Things aren’t looking good for long-planned bike lanes on North Figueroa Blvd, which had been approved and ready to implement until new City Councilmember Gil Cedillo appeared to throw a wrench in the works — despite his previous support for the plan.

As a result, the LACBC is calling on bike riders to contact the councilmember to express their support for the lanes, especially if you live or work in the area.

Since the candidate forum we sponsored in 2013, we have seen bike lanes installed on Colorado and the Eagle Rock bike lanes extended to Colorado.  All that is left to complete the backbone network in Northeast LA is N. Figueroa.

The residents of Northeast LA are scratching their heads thinking why haven’t they been installed yet?  After all, they were packaged for last year’s projects alongside Colorado/Eagle Rock.  This is a good opportunity to raise the question and urge Councilman Cedillo to keep his promise and install bike lanes on this very important corridor. Please join us TODAY for a day of action urging Councilmember Cedillo to add bike lanes on N. Figueroa between York and San Fernando!

Call Cedillo’s office and share your thoughts.  Dial his downtown office (213) 473-7001 and let his staffer know why you think bike lanes on N. Figueroa are good for everyone.  Then, email alek@la-bike.org and let me know how it went.  Remember to stay positive!

You can find a sample script here.

………

Finally, the CEO of Ford gets it. Even if certain residents of Santa Monica don’t.

 

Another drunken hit-and-run, another bike rider left to die in the street

We should all be sick of this by now.

Another drunk driver. Another hit-and-run. Another bike rider left to die in a crumpled heap on our streets.

This time, it happened in Oxnard, at 2:09 this morning, when 43-year old Gerald Garcia of Oxnard was riding south with a friend in the bike lane on Rose Avenue, just below Raider’s Way.

A 2000 Volkswagon GTI driven by 29-year old Oxnard resident Policarpio Diaz was traveling in the bike lane and rear-ended Garcia’s bike. Garcia was thrown off, while Diaz fled the scene with the bicycle still trapped beneath his car.

It’s entirely possible the wide bike lane may have looked like a travel lane in the early morning hour. To a drunk, anyway.

Witnesses aided police in locating Diaz’ car — apparently with the bike still trapped underneath — and they took him into custody a short distance away. Diaz was booked into Ventura County Jail on felony counts of DUI, Hit and Run and Vehicular Manslaughter, as well as two outstanding misdemeanor DUI warrants.

That’s right.

Diaz had two outstanding warrants for DUI, yet he was still allowed to remain on the streets to kill another human being.

Tragedies like this will keep happening as long as our legal system refuses to take drunk driving, hit-and-run and other traffic crimes seriously. Garcia is just the latest in a long string of traffic victims, with no end in sight.

And if that doesn’t piss you off, maybe it should.

This is the 11th confirmed bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first in Ventura County. It’s also at least the fifth bicycling fatality in Oxnard in the last 38 months.

My deepest sympathy to Gerald Garcia and all his family and friends.

Thanks to Danny Gamboa and Kelly for the heads-up.

And no thanks to the California DMV and a legal system that continues to value the rights of drunk drivers over the right of the rest of us to simply stay alive.

78-year old Glendora bike rider dies after being taken off life support

One of my policies on this site is not to report a bicycling fatality without some sort of confirmation.

Which means you many never hear about some of the tragedies that pass through my inbox. But I’d rather keep some bad news under wraps than risk injuring friends and family of a reported victim by reporting a story that may not turn out to be true.

So when I received a report on Thursday that a Glendora rider had died of injuries he suffered earlier this week, I reached out to various sources who might be able to verify the facts.

Sadly, that confirmation came today, in a news story from the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.

The paper had reported earlier this week that a 79-year old rider was critically injured in a left cross collision in Glendora on Monday.

He was riding west on Foothill Blvd at Elwood Ave around 2:30 pm Monday when a driver headed in the opposite direction turned across his path, forcing him into the passenger side of the vehicle. He was revived by police officers, who found him with no pulse and not breathing when they arrived.

He was stabilized by LA County firefighters, and taken to the ICU unit at Foothill Presbyterian Hospital.

Then on Thursday, a comment from Trish said he had been disconnected from life support and died on Wednesday.

That 79 yr old cyclist in Glendora was my son-in-law’s father. He cycled every day and then would come home and walk his dog. He was in excellent health and very fit. Sadly, he was removed from life support yesterday, and passed away shortly thereafter. Sure with drivers would look before they make left hand turns….really look, not just for cars!

Today’s story in the Tribune identified the victim as 78-year old Francisco Alvarez of Glendora.

The 86-year old driver who hit him stayed on the scene and cooperated with investigators. While the case is still under investigation, the paper reports no criminal behavior was suspected — despite the obvious failure to observe right of way and make a safe turn, resulting in the death of an innocent person.

Maybe this will go down as just another “oops,” excused by the age and, presumably, declining skills of the driver.

This is the 10th confirmed bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth in Los Angeles County.

My deepest prayers and sympathy for Francisco Alvarez and all his family.

Thanks to Trish for the bad news.

 

Update: Driver faces charge for August death of Debra Deem in Newport Beach

Maybe there will be justice for Debra Deem after all.

According to CdM Today, a misdemeanor charge of vehicular manslaughter without gross negligence has been filed against 84-year old Irvine resident Robert James Anderson, the driver who took her life in a Newport Beach collision last August.

The site reports the case was filed last Friday, and he’s expected to be arraigned on February 3rd.

Deem was riding west on East Coast Highway just east of Newport Coast Drive at 4:28 pm on August 28th when she was struck by a white minivan driven by Anderson.

The van as traveling in the same direction as Deem; however, it’s not clear if her bike was struck from behind or if he turned into her. Police merely say Anderson made an unsafe lane change that resulted in the collision.

Several people who ride through the area suggest that the design of the intersection, with a dangerous transition from the shoulder bike lane through the freeway-style interchange, may have contributed to the collision.

Deem was the wife of local cycling legend Paul Deem, a former Olympic cyclist and the owner of the Cycle Werx bike shops in Costa Mesa and San Clemente.

According to the Daily Pilot, the charge carries a maximum sentence of one year in county jail.

To be honest, though, as much as I believe in justice for all cyclists, I’m not sure what good there is in sending an 84-year old man to jail. The real benefit may simply be getting a driver who may be too old to drive safely off the roads.

Then again, that probably should have been done long before the collision that took Debra Deem’s life.

Thanks to Amy Senk and Jeffrey for the heads-up.

Update: More information from the Orange County Register; for a change, the story isn’t locked up behind their paywall. 

The paper reports neither speed or alcohol appeared to be a factor in the collision. In an interview, Anderson says he has only received on traffic citation in his life, oddly, for another improper lane change in 1966.

According to his lawyer, witnesses to the collision said Deem left the bike lane when she was cut off by another driver, placing her bike in the path of Anderson’s van. The lawyer says he never saw her. Or rather, never had a chance to see her.

Reading between the lines, it sounds like prosecutors will argue that if Anderson hadn’t made the illegal lane change, Deem’s bike wouldn’t have been in front of him. Or at the very least, he would have had a chance to see her and react.

Then again, her bike should have been clearly visible in the bike lane before any of this unfolded.

And the tragedy is compounded by the heartbreaking effect it’s had on her husband.

“My initial thought was ‘accidents happen,’ “ he said. “People get in a hurry. I’ve been in a hurry. Fortunately I’ve never killed anybody.”

But he keeps thinking about the unfairness of the situation. He lost his wife and later, he said, his house.

“I’m not quite sure what Mr. Anderson’s losing in this thing,” Deem said. “He doesn’t lose his house. If I sue him for wrongful death, he files for bankruptcy and keeps his house and life goes on. I’ve lost my life. … From a justice standpoint, I’ve lost everything.”

Events: Eastside Tour de Cure kickoff, West Valley Community Ride, memorial ride for fallen cyclist Phil Richards

Bike Talk airs every Saturday at 10 am; listen to it live or download the podcast from KPFK.

Bike Long Beach hosts Bike Saturdays every weekend; ride your bike to participating local shops and business throughout the city to get special offers and discounts.

The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee, the city’s only official voice for bicyclists, meets on the first Tuesday of every even-numbered month; the next meeting takes place at 7 pm on Tuesday, February 4th at 6501 Fountain Ave.

Saturday, January 25th, Stan’s Bike Shop in Monrovia teams up with the Eastside Bike Club for a 30-mile no-drop bike ride and registration kick-off for April’s Tour de Cure; meet at 7:30 am at 880 Myrtle Ave, rolling at 8 am. And be sure to say hi to shop owner Carlos Morales, one of the city’s most inspiring bike advocates.

City Councilmember Bob Blumenfield hosts a West Valley Community Bike Ride, co-sponsored by the LACBC, on Saturday morning, January 25th, from 9 to 11 am. The ride, which will be escorted by the LAPD, departs from Blumenfield’s office at 19040 Vanowen St in Reseda.

Also on Saturday the 25th, the Inland Empire Biking Alliance hosts a memorial ride for fallen cyclist Phil Richards, who died to weeks after he was injured in a hit-and-run in Calimesa last month. The ride starts at Stell Coffee and Tea, 1580 Barton Road in Redlands. The ride will have a police escort to the Yucaipa city limits, then go on to install a ghost bike before riding on to a memorial in Beaumont.

The My Figueroa project comes before the Planning & Land Use Committee of the LA City Council on Tuesday, January 28th at 2:30 pm at LA City Hall, 200 North Spring Street. Your support could help ensure the city’s first Complete Streets project actually happens.

After you support MyFigueroa at the PLUM Committee on Tuesday, the 28th, stick around Downtown for the year’s first meeting of the LACBC’s Civic Engagement Committee, representing the interest of cyclists in local politics. The meeting takes place from 6:45 pm to 8:30 pm on the Mezzanine level of LACBC headquarters, 634 S. Spring Street in Downtown LA; this months agenda includes finalizing questionnaires for county supervisor and sheriff’s candidates in the May election, as well as encouraging bike riders to run for their LA neighborhood councils.

The Caltech Bike Lab and JPL Bike Club invite you to enjoy beer, barbecue and bicycles at the Annual Caltech Bikes and Barbecue Social from 6 pm to 9 pm on Friday, January 31st outside the Broad Café.

The next Active Streets LA event takes place on Saturday, February 1st from 10 am to 1:30 pm at Vermont Square Library and Park, 1201 W. 48th St. The event will include free raffle, snacks, beverages, family activities, bike safety skills training and community walk.

The LACBC hosts a regular Sunday Funday ride on the first Sunday of every month, free for members and a guest. This month’s edition is a Super Bowl Warm-Up Ride hosted by board member Greg Laemmle. The 20 mile ride will circle from the meeting point at the NoHo Metro Station, 5350 Lankershim Blvd, to Burbank, onto the L.A. River Bike Path, through Griffith Park. Meets at 10 am, rolling by 10:30 am and back by 2 pm, which should give you time to get to your viewing party. As for me, I’ll be rising early for a ritual sacrifice in support of my beloved Broncos.

The annual Tour de Palm Springs takes place on Saturday, February 8th. Up to 30,000 cyclists from throughout the US and around the world will travel through the Coachella Valley on rides of five to 100 miles.

C.I.C.L.E. offers two Learn to Ride for Adults classes on Sunday, February 9th, from 9 to 11 am and 11:30 am to 1:30 pm. Both classes take place in the parking lot of Eagle Rock Plaza, 2700 Colorado Blvd; tickets are $30, need-based fee waivers are available.

Monday, February 10th the Los Feliz Improvement Association presents Law & Order in Los Feliz, a discussion with LA City Attorney Mike Feuer and LAPD Northeast Division Police Captain Jeffery Bert, 6 pm at the Autry Museum, 4700 Western Heritage Way. Considering how the flyer equates homelessness, crime, noise and bicyclists, maybe you might want to attend if you’re in the area.

The movie that got me back into bicycling will screen on Wednesday, February 12th as the Laemmle Theaters show the classic bike movie Breaking Away as a fundraiser for the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition’s Operation Firefly to put lights on everyone’s bikes; 7:30 pm at the Laemmle NoHo 75240 Lankershim Blvd in North Hollywood.

Celebrate a belated Valentines Day with Ride for Love: Explore the Changes of Watts, co-sponsored by Metro, C.I.C.L.E. and the East Side Riders. The ride will share love, community, and the joy of bicycling while exploring the history and changes of Watts; meet at 9:30 am at 10950 S. Central Ave.

The first Los Angeles Bicycle Commuter Festival and Summit takes place on Sunday, February 16th from noon to 8 pm at The Village at Ed Gould Plaza, 1125 N. McCadden Placetickets $10.

Get ready to get jiggy wit it as the LACBC invites you to celebrate their 16th birthday with a 1998-themed Bike Prom from 8 pm to midnight on Saturday, February 22nd at the American Legion Post 206, 227 N. Ave. 55 in Highland Park; earlybird tickets are $8 for LACBC members and $16 for nonmembers before February 7th.

Chinatown’s annual Firecracker Ride takes place on Saturday, February 22nd with rides of 20 and 30 miles943 North Broadway.

The LABC’s West Bike Ambassadors host a leisurely ride through Venice and Mar Vista on Sunday, February 23rd; the eight to ten mile ride starts at the Mar Vista farmer’s market at the intersection of Venice Blvd and Grand View at 10 am.

Saturday, March 15th, C.I.C.L.E. hosts The Way Back When Ride: La Puente, co-sponsored by Metro and Bike SGV. The family-friendly, leisurely paced ride meets at 10:30 am at the Park-N-Ride Lot at Stafford Street and Glendora Avenue in the City of Industry, rolling at 11 am.

Also on Saturday, March 15th, give your legs a test with the annual Malibu Seven Canyon Classic, with routes ranging from 50 to 100 miles, including a new fast, flat route along the coast. All rides start at 8 am.

The National Open Streets Summit is scheduled for Friday, April 4th through Sunday, April 6th in Los Angeles.

The next CicLAvia is scheduled for Sunday, April 6th on iconic Wilshire Blvd, LA’s historic main street. The free event rolls and walks from Downtown to the Miracle Mile with expanded hours from 9 am to 4 pm.

The American Diabetes Association’s Tour de Cure Ship to Shore ride takes place on Sunday, April 27th at the Queen Mary, 1126 Queen’s Highway in Long Beach. Rides range from eight to 100 miles, with a $200 fundraising minimum.

Mark your calendar for Glendale’s 2nd Annual Jewel City Fun & Fitness Ride on Sunday, May 18th, with rides ranging from seven to 45 miles.

LA’s most popular fundraising bike ride rolls on Sunday, June 22nd with the 14th edition of the LACBC’s Los Angeles River Ride. Ten rides of varying lengths, with starting points in Long Beach and Griffith Park, including two centuries, a 15-mile family ride and a free kid’s ride; discount prices available through May 27th.

The year’s second CicLAvia takes place on Sunday, October 5th with a new variation on the classic Heart of LA route through Downtown LA, from Echo Park to East LA.

The first winter — or late fall, anyway — CicLAvia is also the first to roll through historic South LA on Sunday, December 7th, from the cultural center of the Southside in Leimert Park to the birthplace of West Coast Jazz on Central Avenue.

Find bike racing schedules and other cycling events at SoCal Cycling.

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