Morning Links: Ride the Long Beach Grand Prix route sans cars, and Bike Snob looks at presumed liability

Long Beach is once again allowing bikes, skaters and pedestrians to experience the Long Beach Grand Prix route in a carfree mini-ciclovía, but only for an hour and a half.

Although it might be more exciting with the cars zooming by at breakneck speeds with just inches to spare.

Just like on most LA-area streets.

Click here for a larger version of the Long Beach Grand Prix View poster.

………

Good piece from Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss, as he tackles the topic of presumed liability and the disparity between bikes and motor vehicles.

To be fair, we do acknowledge this disparity in responsibility by requiring motorists to obtain licenses and to register and insure (at least in most states) their vehicles. We don’t acknowledge it, however, once a motorist collides with a cyclist. Indeed, in practice, cyclists often bear more responsibility than drivers in these instances, due in part to the common misconceptions that bikes don’t belong on the roads in the first place and that people out riding are just thrill-seeking fitness freaks who get what’s coming to them. On top of that, cyclists must then deal with all the ensuing legal and medical issues that come with being hit, and generally speaking, people aren’t exactly at their sharpest after they’ve been clobbered by an SUV. Forget standing up for your rights; you’re lucky if you can stand up at all.

It’s worth taking a few minutes out of your day to read the rest.

And hats off to Weiss, who’s finding his voice as an advocate for safer streets.

………

Local

Curbed talks with outgoing LA Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne, who is taking the newly created post of chief design officer for the City of Los Angeles, with oversight responsibilities including reviewing the design of streets, sidewalks and bikeways.

Santa Clarita had no pedestrian deaths last year, even though LA County led the nation.

 

State

A new bill would authorize congestion pricing demonstration projects in two cities in Northern California, and two in the southern part of the state, offering the potential to get more people out of cars and onto bikes, foot and transit.

A 71-year old bike rider suffered life-threatening injuries when he was struck by the driver of an SUV in San Marcos on Monday; witnesses reported he veered out of a bike lane and into the path of the SUV. As always, the question is whether any of those witnesses were outside the car that hit him.

Projected costs have more than doubled for San Diego’s planned downtown protected bike lane network, in part because the mayor has decided to use planters as dividers instead of plastic bollards; completion has been delayed until at least 2021.

The San Diego Bicycle Coalition is looking for a full-time advocacy coordinator.

A San Diego writer offers a self-described chill guide to the city’s dockless bikeshare and scooters. Thanks to Evan Burbridge for the link.

A Redding letter writer says the requirement to ride with traffic is a stupid, stupid law and needs to be changed. Never mind that riding salmon is one of the best ways to get into a serious crash; drivers don’t expect to see you riding upstream.

 

National

The Kentucky senate unanimously passed a three-foot passing law, including provisions allowing bicyclists to ride two abreast, and allowing drivers to briefly cross a double yellow line to pass people on bicycles; now the bill goes back to the state house for reconciliation.

Actor and Jennifer Anniston-ex Justin Theroux is one of us, captured by the paparazzi riding incognito in New York.

Five hundred New Yorkers marched to demand safer streets in response to the deaths of two children killed by a red light-running driver last week.

The Wall Street Journal sings the praises of dockless bikeshare, saying “Uber for bikes” is a commuter’s dream. Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.

A Philadelphia jury awarded a bicyclist $3.19 million dollars for injuries he suffered when he hit a pothole during a charity ride, despite signing a waiver before the ride.

 

International

Great idea. Vancouver is working with three bike co-ops to recycle abandoned bicycles and give them to people who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford one, to help keep them out of the landfill.

A forthcoming British book illustrates bicycling not too distant past.

An English county will test radar and thermal technology to detect bike riders on the road, and flash a warning to drivers of a rider up ahead.

A BBC radio personality rode 350 miles in five days to raise the equivalent of nearly $700,000 to fight mental illness, after her partner committed suicide las year.

An Op-Ed says New Zealand’s bicycling rates could double if riders had a choice on whether or not to wear a helmet.

An American bike helmet “expert” weighs in on New Zealand’s helmet law, saying a helmet will protect you if you’re hit by a car traveling under the speed limit. Which is probably true, if the speed limit is 15 mph, since bike helmets are only designed to protect against impacts up to 12.5 mph. 

 

Competitive Cycling

World Champion Peter Sagan says it’s not whether you win or lose, it’s all about putting on a good show. Something tells me his sponsors would beg to differ.

 

Finally…

No, really. Bike advocates always bring out the best in online commenters. Oddly, TV viewers don’t like suggesting that bike riders should be tossed out with the trash.

And your next bike could be a Lamborghini.

Assuming you have more dollars than sense to spend on it.

 

2 comments

  1. doug moore says:

    Hi Ted, you are correct about Bike Snob. He’s got his sharp wit pointed in the right direction, thanks for the heads up about his essay.

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