Morning Links: BH bans dockless bikes & scooters; CiclaValley water bombed; stolen bike recovered with Bike Index

Nothing like standing firmly in the way of alternative transportation and non-motor vehicle traffic.

In an astoundingly wrong-headed decision, Beverly Hills has voted for a complete six-month ban on the use of dockless e-scooters anywhere in the city.

According to the Beverly Hills Courier,

The ordinance will prohibit shared mobility devices from being placed in any public right-of-way or on public property, operated in any public-right-of-way or on public property, or offered for use anywhere in the City of Beverly Hills.

That would appear to apply to dockless bikeshare bikes as well as e-scooters.

However, the legality of that dockless vehicle ban is highly questionable.

While Beverly Hills does have the authority to ban the placement of dockless devices in the city, it’s unlikely that they have the authority to ban the use of a vehicle that is legal under state law on public right-of-ways.

Let alone the deep pockets to fight the companies in court.

The question is whether they are willing to force tourists off their bikes and scooters as they ride into the city from other places and fine violators, risking a public relations disaster that could harm tourism in a city that depends on it.

Let alone whether the police will be willing to devote resources that are better spent elsewhere to enforce it.

Either way, it’s a big step backwards for a city has has been working to overcome its previously well-deserved reputation as the LA area’s biking black hole.

Meanwhile, David Drexler reports that e-scooters have been officially banned from Santa Monica’s beachfront bike path.

 

Naturally, people have responded exactly the way you might expect. By ignoring it and using the scooters anyway.

As the photo shows, not everyone is a fan of e-scooters.

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As long as we’re on the scooter beat, here’s a few more pieces to consider.

According to Wired, data shows that scooter users are surprisingly diverse, and not the upscale tech bros they’re often painted as.

A new public survey shows e-scooter use is growing at an unprecedented rate, and 70% of Americans see them in a poise light.

The Drive compares a Bird scooter to a high-end Mercedes-Benz, and finds the Bird wins out in almost every category.

But sounding like he could be a Beverly Hills city councilmember, a writer for Jalopnik says fuck scooters and fund effective public transit instead.

As if it’s somehow impossible to have both.

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

And this time it hits close to home, as CiclaValley reports that he was hit with a water balloon from a passing car.

While it may sound like a harmless prank, throwing anything from a moving vehicle at another human being is a crime. And one that could have caused him to lose control and crash, possibly with catastrophic results.

Fortunately, in this case, he just got wet. And understandably angry.

It’s also a perfect candidate for LA’s largely forgotten cyclist anti-harassment ordinance.

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This is why you need to register your bike. Using Bike Index, a theft victim was able to recover a stolen bicycle in Irvine this week.

And yes, lifetime bicycle registration is free.

So is reporting a stolen bike, and searching the Bike Index national stolen bike database.

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LA-based former pro Phil Gaimon has posted the final video in his epic grudge match battle with fellow ex-pro Fabian Cancellara.

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Proof that not all radical right wackjobs are eligible for social security, as a much younger YouTuber sees last weekend’s Go Human Demonstration Project in West Covina as an attempt to impose a carfree, Agenda 21-driven future on all us real Americans.

Be sure to listen closely as he boos the mayor pro-tem of Ontario, who is also the president of the Southern California Association of Governments, aka SCAG, around the 3:30 mark.

Which I’m sure is why he booed him. And not because he was the only one wearing a yarmulke.

And for anyone who needs a refresher, Agenda 21 is a harmless, non-binding UN action plan calling on all nations to work towards a more sustainable future, and not some secret cabal hellbent on destroying our gas-driven way of life.

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Local

The LA Times says it’s time to reform the outdated laws that force California cities to keep raising speed limits to deadly levels.

Hats off to CiclaValley for drying off and finishing the Nichols Ride.

The Metro Bike docked bikeshare system is on the way out in Pasadena, and will be gone entirely within the next few weeks after the city pulled the plug in the face of massive losses.

A Whittier man pled not guilty to charges that he deliberately ran over a bike rider in a parking lot after losing a fistfight with him.

Santa Monica voted last night on a $5 million package of upgrades to the city’s existing bike lanes, and SaMo’s first parking protected bike lane; no word yet on how the vote came out.

 

State

San Diego approves a hard-fought bike plan that promises to greatly increase bike use, and includes a proposal to provide bicycle eduction for fourth grade students; however, the plan has no deadlines for completion. Let’s hope they don’t follow the Los Angeles model, and end up putting it on the shelf indefinitely while individual councilmembers slowly gut it.

A San Diego bicyclist suffered major injuries when he was struck by a driver at 60 mph while riding in the traffic lanes of State Route 163.

Goleta unveils a new bicycle and pedestrian master plan.

A bike-riding Sacramento teenager was struck by a patrol car as he attempted to flee police on foot after they attempted to pull him over for a vehicle code violation; he was charged with resisting arrest after his release from the hospital.

This is the exact opposite of Vision Zero. Bike riders in South Lake Tahoe call for a safe crossing on the highway that serves as the town’s Main Street where a bicyclist was killed in a hit-and-run earlier this month. Naturally, Caltrans can’t fix it without conducting a study first, and says it’s too late to conduct one before they rebuild the roadway.

 

National

Actor Dennis Quaid is one of us, going from a banana seat Sting Ray, to starring in Breaking Away, to riding 100 miles a week on his roadie. Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.

A new study shows bicycling can protect your heart from the damaging effects of air pollution. Even if the air you’re riding in sucks.

Outside says older carbon fiber frames are failing, leading to serious injuries and expensive lawsuits.

Next City says equity makes bikeshare work.

Heartbreaking story from Denver, where a bike commuter did everything right, only to end up paralyzed by a careless driver, and a second collision with a hit-and-run driver as he lay in the street.

Denver Streetsblog reminds us that drivers and bike riders both break the law at about the same rate. The difference is that drivers do it out of convenience, while bicyclists do it for safety.

The Des Moines IA columnist who co-founded Iowa’s popular RAGBRAI mass ride died of prostate cancer on the day this year’s ride started; Donald Kaul was a two-time finalist for the prestigious Pulitzer Prize. RAGBRAI participants rode a mile of silence in his honor.

Houston police release a composite photo of the bike-riding killer who shot a noted cardiologist as he rode his bicycle.

Chicago talks with the founder of a DIY website for posting photos of vehicles blocking bike lanes, with the possibility that the city may end up ticketing the drivers. I’d love to see LADOT start a website like that here, and send tickets to the owners of the vehicle with legible plates.

No bias here. A New Hampshire writer says bicyclists have a greater burden of responsibility for road safety, because we’re the ones most likely to pay the price. Not the people in the big, dangerous machines who might, you know, hurt or kill someone.

A year after he was intentionally run down by a hit-and-run driver, a Pennsylvania man gets back on his bike for a 22-mile ride.

The Philadelphia Inquirer offers stretches for your tight bicycling muscles.

The New York Times says riding a bike is just like riding a bike, and make sure your kids wear their damn helmets, already. And you, too.

A month-long Florida lane reduction project was successful in reducing speeding by 53%, while the protected bike lanes resulted in a 50% jump in bicycling rates and a 38% boost in walking.

 

International

Prince George and Princess Charlotte are both one of us, as the toddling royal riders learn to bike without training wheels.

Apparently taking Vision Zero seriously, London plans to cut speed limits to 20 mph in some areas.

A British woman vows never to return to the city of Exeter after taking offense at the local edition of the World Naked Bike Ride, writing “Who on earth wants to see wrinkly old men showing their ‘bits’.”

The war on bikes continues, as a woman in the UK leaned out of a car’s passenger window to verbally abuse three bike riding teenagers before grabbing one from the moving car and pulling him off his bike.

Sad news, as South African track cycling legend Garen Bloch was killed in a motorcycle crash Saturday night. A motorcycle crash also took the life of a Rwandan cycling official.

Good question. An injured Aussie bicyclist asks what it is about our culture that has “reduced cyclists to non-people that do not deserve the most basic human compassion?”

An Australian woman was hit with a $400 fine for talking on a cellphone while riding a bike; the law absurdly treats bicyclists and drivers the same when it comes to distracted usage, even though only one poses a significant risk to others.

Three out of five US advisors said bicycles made South Vietnam’s militias more effective during a pilot program in the Vietnam war, though the bike-born forces apparently never saw combat. At least not by the South.

A Singaporean woman has been sentenced to two weeks in jail and ordered to pay compensation, after crashing her bike into a 77-year old woman and breaking her hip, despite numerous No Bicycles signs in the market was riding through.

 

Competitive Cycling

The nation’s third oldest bicycle race rolled through the streets of Manhattan Beach on Sunday, with the 57th Annual Manhattan Beach Grand Prix. SoCal pro Coryn Rivera came home to win the women’s elite race, while Justin Williams won the men’s title.

It’s looking like Sky versus Sky as the Tour de France enters its final week.

Adam Yates took a decisive tumble in Tuesday’s stage 15, while Philippe Gilbert was lucky to survive a frightening crash, flipping over a wall and down a steep drop; he somehow finished the race with a broken kneecap.

Apparently trying to make the race more exiting in the face of Sky’s dominance, French farmers protested by tossing bales of hay into the path of the peloton, which had to take a break after an overzealous cop pepper sprayed the famers — and the passing cyclists.

Yellow jersey wearer Geraint Thomas warns that Tom Dumoulin isn’t out of it yet.

The Bahrain-Merida team is considering suing the Tour de France after Vincenzo Nibali was forced out of the race following a crash caused by an overzealous fan.

Wired takes a deep dive into the physics of drafting in the Tour.

Anecdotal evidence points to more, and more dangerous, crashes in the pro peloton; theories for the reason range from faster speeds, to more reckless riding due to helmet use, and the use of the pain killer Tramadol by riders.

More cyclists in the Tour are riding with wider tires and lower air pressure, which studies have shown reduces rolling resistance.

Outside examines the real reason there’s no women’s Tour de France. Which seems to be somewhere between a lack of sponsorship and a lack of giving a damn on the part of pro cycling officials.

 

Finally…

Stop sign-running bicyclists busted by   the fashionistas came for our shorts, now it’s our sunglasses.

And sure, he may be a pro cyclist competing in his first Tour de France, but he’s also a poet and a proponent of the Oxford comma.

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Especially since we didn’t win the half billion dollar lottery yesterday. 

 

7 comments

  1. keith says:

    Interesting how 90210 views the escooter biz and dockless bikes, perhaps the later because they have a bike-dock program.

    I suppose long as you e-scooter in the street you’re ok? Perhaps we’ll need some test riders to find out. Think we had the similar issues when the electric typewriter first showed up in the workplace too. Caused brain damage or something.

    Keep in mind when it comes to figuring out other transit options, Bev Hills has been trying extra hard & spending tons of cash to prevent the subway from going thru their burg.

    Then again, the last mayor ok’d bike lanes on Santa Monica Blvd.

  2. CiclaValley says:

    “drying off”. Funny.

  3. David Drexler says:

    That’s a shame about Beverly Hills. Now it will result in more cars passing through the city.

  4. Michelle Mowery says:

    I’ve not forgotten the anti-harassment ordinance.

  5. David Erickson says:

    Regarding the link to https://www.outsideonline.com/2311816/carbon-fiber-bike-accidents-lawsuits, it never ceases to amaze me that anyone other than a professional racer would buy a carbon fiber part or complete bike. If you are a professional racer, where every ounce counts, and you have lots of money and a professional team to maintain the bike and you get a new bike every year, a carbon fiber bike makes sense. But for everyone else they are like playing Russian roulette, since they can easily fail (often catastrophically), especially if they are not meticulously maintained. Also they are expensive. All that just to save the equivalent weight of a half bottle of water.

  6. scott rose says:

    I’m beginning to think the scooter scofflaws will make cyclists seem sympathetic to cagers. bleep rolls downhill.

  7. Jason says:

    Allegedly this link (PDF) has the actual ordinance language: http://beverlyhills.granicus.com/MetaViewer.php?view_id=49&clip_id=6176&meta_id=371196

    Option 1 discusses prohibiting shared mobility systems. It does not specify motorized…did they just inadvertently ban their own bike share program?

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