Archive for Morning Links

San Diego man killed in collision after falling off his bike

More bad news.

According to multiple sources, a man was killed in San Diego’s City Heights neighborhood on Tuesday when he was hit by a driver after apparently falling off his bike.

The victim, identified only as a 66-year old man, was riding against traffic in the left lane of northbound Fairmont Ave, between Home Street and Federal Boulevard, when he somehow tumbled from his mountain bike around 6:45 pm.

A 61-year old woman ran over his sprawled body after thinking he was just a shadow in the street, and was unable to stop in time when she realized her error.

She stayed at the scene and cooperated with investigators, despite initial reports that it was a hit-and-run.

It’s unknown whether the victim lost control because he was under the influence, suffered from some kind of health condition or fell for some other reason.

It’s also unclear why he was riding in the left lane, rather than in the bike lane.

Other sources identify the area of the crash as the Ridgeview/Webster or Chollas Creek neighborhoods of San Diego.

This is at least the eighth bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first I’m aware of in San Diego County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and all his loved ones.

Thanks to Jeff Kucharski for the heads-up.

Morning Links: Bike lanes promote safer passing, and Chino Incycle manager run down by bike thieves

Maybe that painted bike lane is safer than you think.

In a new study from a Canadian university, researchers rode bicycles equipped with sensors and a handlebar-mounted camera to measure how close drivers pass people on bicycles.

The results show that on two lane roads without bike lanes, motorists passed people on bicycles too closely 12% of the time, based on the equivalent of a three-foot passing distance.

But on roads with bike lanes, that dropped to just 0.2%.

On four lane streets, incidents of close passing dropped from 6% to just 0.5%.

The university plans to use that data to develop tools to determine where bike lanes would do the most good.

………

Bike thieves walked out of the Chino Incycle Bicycles with a $10,000 mountain bike, then ran over the manager when she tried to stop them.

Bike mechanic Raul Ureno chased the thieves in his car and managed to get the bike back, though he was unable to stop them.

The manager, who wasn’t named, suffered a broken pelvis, crushed ribs and fractured skull.

There’s a $10,000 reward for the suspects. Let’s hope someone takes them up on it.

………

A Rancho Mirage-area Strava user posted a photo of a powerful billboard featuring fallen cyclist Will Campbell.

Too bad we don’t have the money to put these up everywhere, one for every rider who loses their lives on the streets.

Maybe then drivers would start to pay attention.

Thanks to Steve S for the heads-up.

………

In yet another example of LA leaders’ rhetoric exceeding their actions, bike-friendly Councilmembers Mike Bonin and Nury Martinez were joined by the decidedly unfriendly Paul Koretz in calling for a Green New Deal for the City of Los Angeles.

Never mind that Koretz has consistently blocked much-needed bike lanes in his Westside district, forcing residents to rely on carbon fuel-driven motor vehicles. And gone out of his way to fight the density that would cut trips for work, school and shopping.

Koretz has long positioned himself as LA’s most ecologically minded councilmember.

But until his actions catch up with his words, they’ll remain just that.

Words.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

……….

Mountain biker Brandon Semenuk tells the full story behind the most viewed mountain bike video of all time.

If you’ve got four minutes to spare, it’s worth taking a brief break in your day to watch the original video. Which is a lot shorter than the 24-minute explanation.

………

Local

Good news, Los Angeles. You no longer have the worst traffic in the US. In fact, we’re not even in the top five.

CiclaValley offers a video essay on the best route from the San Fernando Valley to the Westside, suggesting Fryman Canyon to Franklin Canyon, with a surprisingly low 442 feet of climbing. I’m going to save that one for my next trip over the Hollywood Hills.

State

A San Diego site says it’s time to reign in e-scooters, as the city’s mayor proposes to do just that.

More sad news, this time from Bakersfield, where a man was killed when he allegedly rode his bike out in front of an oncoming car at an intersection.

Redding prepares to open a new bike path connecting downtown to the Sacramento River, replacing what residents call a harrowing one-mile journey.

Work crews with the California Conservation Corp destroyed three popular, but unsanctioned, bike trails in the forests around Arcata, which a local news site called “the lifeblood of the community forest for generations of bike riders.”

National

Bicycling offers nine tips on how to get a stolen bike back, including recommending Bike Index as your best bet to register your bike after the theft. You can report your stolen bike with Bike Index right here on this site. Then again, why wait until it’s too late?

You can kiss the last remaining Performance Bicycle locations goodbye; if you don’t make it in before March 2nd, it will be too late. Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the tip.

If you can get past the Wall Street Journal’s paywall, you can read about a Hawaii man who took a five-day ride around the coast of the Big Island once the Kilauea volcano settled down.

The rich get richer. Portland is attempting to reclaim its title as America’s leading bike city by building 16.5 miles of protected bike lanes. And getting rid of 1,000 parking spaces in the process.

Crosscut profiles the active transportation director for the Washington State Department of Transportation, asking if she can save bicycling in the state.

Caught on video: Police in Mesa AZ are looking for three people who attempted to run over a group of bike cops, crushing their bikes as they jumped out of the way.

Utah’s legislature is moving forward with a bill that would allow bike riders to go through red lights if they don’t change after stopping for 90 seconds, over the objections of law enforcement.

Um, sure. An allegedly drunken San Antonio driver who killed a bike riding surgeon says she fled the scene because she got frightened after thinking she ran over something. Meanwhile, his accused killer is out on $50,000 bond. Sure. Doesn’t everyone get terrified when they drive over a stick or a speed bump or something? Thanks to Stephen Katz for the tip.

Lime is pulling the plug on it’s bikeshare service in Hartford CT, leaving the city scrambling for a replacement.

While Los Angeles bike riders wait for the DA’s office to finally file charges against the hit-and-run driver who killed Frederick “Woon” Frazier, the NYPD has failed to make arrests in four recent hit-and-runs involving people on bicycles, including two where they know the identity of the driver. Which begs the question, why should drivers take hit-and-run seriously when police and prosecutors apparently don’t?

About damn time. A well-funded global alliance launched in the nation’s capital with the goal of finally putting people before cars on our streets.

After that Greenville SC boy jumped on his bike to get help for his unconscious father, bighearted local firefighters surprised him with a new bicycle.

International

Vancouver police help a group of college engineering students recover their custom-designed, hand-built, one-of-a-kind racing ebike after it was stolen.

London is responding to the death of a bike rider by banning cars entirely from three roads leading into a busy junction in the city’s financial district.

Caught on video too: A London bike rider discovers an air horn can move mountains. Or at least pedestrians blocking bike lanes. Be sure to stay to the end for the totally unsurprising response; thanks again to Steve S.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is one of us, riding a bicycle into the English Premier League team’s Spain training camp, as they take a break from the title chase.

Amsterdam has a nine-year old junior bike mayor. Which is exactly one more than Los Angeles has, junior or otherwise.

Bari, Italy is now the first Italian city to pay residents to bike to work, up to the equivalent of $28 a month.

They get it. Melbourne’s leading motoring organization is recommending that bicycle superhighways move to the top of the state government’s infrastructure plans to fight traffic congestion in the city.

An Aussie writer calls for a little sympathy and tolerance after reading the disturbing comments following the death of a bike rider.

A Singapore man has been spotted again riding a bicycle while towing a strange ladder-like metal extension. Unless it actually is a ladder, in which case it’s not strange at all.

Competitive Cycling

Lawson Craddock, the pro cyclist who finished dead last in his first Tour de France after riding the entire race with a broken collarbone, is working his way back to this year’s race with a new attitude as a new father.

Fifty-eight-year old former Tour de France stage winner Sean Yates has turned to an ebike to keep riding after suffering a heat defect that limits his pulse rate to just 90 beats a minute.

Rouleur talks with 1960s six-day race superstar Patrick Sercu.

Finally…

Apparently it’s against the law to ride a moped while carrying a bicycle in some places. Climbing the legendary Mont Ventoux without a seat.

And it may be about to get wet out there, but at least this is one problem we don’t have in LA.

Morning Links: Yes, bikes can ride abreast, killer NM meth driver set free, and attempted murder over a snowball

Breaking news: KNBC-4 reports there was a fatal crash between two drivers at 82nd and Broadway in South LA’s Florence neighborhood, which appears to have involved a pair of bike riders in a collateral damage crash.

No word on who was killed, but chances are, it was one or more of the people on bicycles.

Hopefully we’ll get more information later today.

Update: Sadly, our fears were confirmed. The only good news is that there was only one victim.

………

The Riverside Press Enterprise tries, and fails, to answer the question of whether bicyclists are allowed to ride two or more abreast.

Not so simple answer: There is nothing in California law that forbids riding abreast.

Some police agencies attempt to use CVC 21202 to forbid riding abreast, which requires bicyclists to ride as far to the right as practicable, concluding that the outside rider is violating the law.

However, they fail to consider the many exceptions to CVC 21202, which make it clear that the requirement to ride to the right does not apply on lanes that are too narrow to safely share with a motor vehicle. Which is most of the right hand traffic lanes in Southern California.

In which case there is no limit to the number of people who can ride abreast — as long as you remain within a single lane.

However, you still have to pull over to the right when safe to do so if there are five or more vehicles following behind you and unable to pass. But once again, that does not apply in some circumstances.

Like if there are two or more lanes in the direction you’re traveling, in which case drivers can simply change lanes to pass.

It’s also worth noting that the law doesn’t apply if you’re riding at the speed of traffic around you.

So if you’re riding the speed limit, or drivers are slowed to your speed by congestion, you can ride wherever the hell you want.

Including riding abreast if that’s what you want.

………

This is why people continue to die on our streets.

An Albuquerque man remains free despite killing a bike rider in a horrific hit and run, and testing positive for meth at least twice; his lawyers say the case should be dropped because he suffers from PTSD, ADHD and depression.

And yes, there is video, but I wouldn’t recommend it. Some things you just can’t unsee.

At least the judge told him not to drive, though. And everyone knows meth heads do exactly what they’re told.

Right?

Thanks to Brian Kreimendahl of Bike Santa Fe for the heads-up.

………

This is what’s known as a disproportionate response.

A road raging Seattle woman tries to run people over after someone hit her car with a snowball. Then gets out of her car and physically attacks them until she was restrained.

Seriously.

Attempted murder is never an appropriate response.

Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the tip.

………

Norm Bradwell forwards a new video that explains how Toronto increased bicycling rates a whopping 1095% on two busy roads for a paltry $1.25 million.

Or less than one million in US dollars.

………

Evidently, dockless bikeshare is pretty chill in Seattle these days.

………

Local

No news is good news, right?

State

San Diego agreed to pay $1 million to a bike rider who seriously injured his face and jaw after hitting a pothole; advocates say it illustrates the city’s inadequate bicycle infrastructure.

A San Jose newspaper takes a look at bike and pedestrian safety from a decidedly windshield perspective, telling the people not in the big, dangerous machines to wear reflective clothes and pay attention in parking lots so drivers won’t hurt them. Or worse.

Uber’s Jump dockless bikeshare service is cutting into the company’s eponymous ride-hailing service in San Francisco.

Lyft donates $700,000 to Oakland to provide bikes and transit discounts to underserved community members, including establishing a bicycle lending library and starting a process to bring bikeshare to the city.

Sad news from Stockton, where a bike rider was killed when he was struck by two drivers as he was crossing an intersection, one of whom fled the scene.

National

A new report says US bicycling fatalities are at their highest level since 1991. Or at least they were in 2016, which is the last year for which national stats are currently available. And chances are they haven’t gone down much since then, if at all.

Bike Snob grabs a pipe and dons his cardigan sweater to offer some fatherly advice on how to teach your kid to have a positive attitude about bicycling in a bike-unfriendly world.

NBC says riding a bicycle with her husband helped “reignite the lust” in a woman’s marriage, even though she just says it reconnect them with the romance of earlier days. Which isn’t exactly the same thing.

A writer for Bicycling shares nine tips she learned from riding almost every kind of bicycle.

Next month, you can trade your current bike in for a new Trek roadie with disc brakes.

That Portland woman who killed a bike rider while high on her dog’s Xanax got a well-deserved 15 years behind bars. Hopefully that comes with a mandatory drug treatment program for both of them.

A Seattle man recovered his stolen Bianchi with the help of a local Facebook group and a BOLO alert among Jimmy John’s delivery riders.

If there can be peace between Alaskan winter bike riders and cross-country skiers, maybe there’s hope for our nation’s political divide.

Over 200 people turned out on a night with a wind chill of 50 degrees below zero to honor a fallen Chicago bicyclist who was killed in a crash while riding home from work last week.

The bighearted owner of a Flint, Michigan diner will fix up 200 bicycles donated by the state police to give to local kids who don’t have one; last year they collaborated to give away over 2,000 bikes.

No surprise here. Pittsburgh bike riders say they’re more comfortable sharing streets with self-driving vehicles than with their human counterparts.

A South Carolina second-grade teacher helped save the father of one of her students; she spotted the seven-year old riding his bicycle on a busy highway to get help after finding his dad passed out from a diabetic episode.

He gets it. An op-ed in a Florida paper says the three E’s — education, enforcement and engineering — aren’t enough to lower the state’s worst in the nation bicycling death rate; it will take solid data, and real action based on that data.

Florida lawmakers consider making the same mistake California made by raising the threshold for felony theft from $300 to $1,500, although the Golden State only made it $1,000. Problem is the value of most bicycles is far less than that, making it the equivalent of a Get Out of Jail Free card for bike thieves.

A Florida woman is suing Lime for a crash that left her daughter in a persistent vegetative state over instructions that tell e-scooter users to ride in the street, even though that’s illegal in the state. In California, it’s illegal to use motorized scooters on the sidewalk. Thanks to David Drexler for the tip. 

International

Another day, another smartphone app promising to alert drivers to the presence of bike riders and pedestrians. But only if the driver and the person on the bike or on foot both have it installed and turned on. Not to mention convincing drivers they don’t have to pay attention because the app will do it for them.

A writer from Calgary offers tips on relatively cheap ways to keep warm riding your bike on winter days.

An Irish cycling coach says 2019 will be the worst year ever for bicycle crashes, because too many people are learning to get fast on virtual trainers before they develop the skill to ride safely on the streets.

Colnago celebrates the 87th birthday of founder Ernesto Calnago with a $56,000 gold-plated bike.

A former Nigerian governor died nearly 45 years after he escaped an army general by fleeing to Lagos on his bicycle.

Competitive Cycling

Italian cycling pros launch a petition calling for better laws to protect bicyclists in the country in memory of fallen Giro winner Michele Scarponi, including a requirement for bike lanes and a safe passing distance.

More proof the Era of Doping hasn’t ended yet. A 50-year old amateur cyclist from Alabama was banned for four years after she failed a urine test.

Finally…

Who needs Vision Zero when you have some of the nation’s crappiest drivers? Seriously, when you’re riding your bike with five outstanding warrants while carrying drug paraphernalia and an illegal weapon, obey the damn traffic laws, already.

And it’s probably not the best idea to text your husband to say you’re at the local tavern after just attempting to run his bike down with your car.

Morning Links: Bike-riding spy in Nazi Germany, Inside the Issues clips, and solving US health crisis with bikes

There’s not much about bikes in this story.

But something tells me you’ll want to read it anyway.

A 98-year old woman, now living with her husband in Los Angeles, describes what it was like to infiltrate Nazi Germany as a 24-year old, blue eyed blond Frenchwoman who lost her sister and 29 other relatives in the Holocaust.

As Allied forces entered Germany, she borrowed a bicycle to ride to the southern part of the country. And posing as a frightened German citizen, found out from a Nazi officer where the remnants of the German army were waiting to ambush the Allied Forces.

There’s no telling how many lives she may have saved, or how much her bravery may have shortened the war.

A reminder that you never know who that little old lady once was.

Like maybe a 4’11” bike-riding hero who helped save the world.

………

Unfortunately, I can’t link to Friday’s Inside the Issues report about LA bicycling issues on the Spectrum News 1 channel, since they don’t archive their shows online.

Never mind that people paying for their cable and internet service might actually want to see it if they missed the initial broadcast. Let alone everyone else who doesn’t get SoCal Spectrum service.

Let alone Inside the Issues.

But at least they’ve tweeted a few clips from the show, including one with yours truly talking about the Frederick “Woon” Frazier tragedy.

And yes, my choice of attire was entirely intentional.

They also posted this too-brief clip of new LACBC Executive Director Eli Akira Kaufman, followed by a clip from their report on ghost bikes.

Which I didn’t know they were doing until I arrived at the studio wearing that shirt.

Hopefully they’ll post clips from the same Inside the Issues show with Curbed’s Alissa Walker and CicLAvia ED Romel Pascal.

………

A 409-page benchmarking report from the League of American Bicyclists says more bicycling and walking could solve America’s public health crisis, as well as reduce traffic congestion, and shows where it’s getting better and worse to ride a bike in the US.

………

To help get you in the mood for Valentines Day, CBS News says the key to a happy marriage may be a tandem bike.

Or at least it’s worked for a New Jersey couple who’ve been riding together for 45 years.

………

Bystanders in Oaxaca formed an impromptu cheering squad for a late night family bike ride.

Thanks to Pedal Love for the link.

………

Nothing will cure a case of the Mondays faster than this thread from Peter Flax, showing a number of classic Hollywood celebrities were each one of us, too.

………

Local

LA Magazine examines how the mostly student-led group Westwood Forward successfully created the North Westwood Neighborhood Council, splitting off from the existing Westwood NC, which had fought to restrict “bike lanes, nightlife, and new housing.” And anything remotely resembling fun.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton says forget expensive highway projects in the mayor’s 28 by 2028 program to accelerate Metro projects for the ’28 LA Olympics; instead, he says focus on transit and equity, as well as expanding open streets, bikeshare and protected bike lanes.

Los Angeles could be about to fix a “bureaucratic quirk” that left hundreds of streets unrepaired because they were officially withdrawn from use. Even though no one actually bothered to close them, or anything.

This is who we share the roads with. An allegedly stoned driver plowed into a crowd of people in Fullerton as they left local nightspots early Sunday morning, seriously injuring ten people. But sure, tell us again how you were nearly killed by someone on a bicycle that one time.

This is who we share the roads with, part two. An apparently drunk or stoned woman carefully drove around security barriers and into the lobby of the San Pedro police station, then backed out with a cop hanging onto her open door — and with her baby in the car.

The South Coast Air Quality Management District, aka AQMD, is moving forward with a proposal for a half-cent sales tax increase to fund clean air projects. Someone should tell them there’s nothing cleaner than bicycles and bike lanes.

State

San Diego faces a more than half a billion dollar deficit in funding to fix a backlog of transportation infrastructure projects, including streetlights, bike lanes and sidewalk repair.

A Santa Barbara bicyclist says he’s the one who was seriously injured in a crash with a truck driver on Gibraltar Road last year; he’s now fully recovered and back to riding the popular climb, though he’s now descending at 12 mph instead of 30 mph.

Santa Barbara is planning a pair of road diets to slow traffic and improve safety under the city’s Vision Zero plan.

Santa Maria is stepping up police enforcement and working on new bike and downtown streetscape planes to improve safety for bicyclists and pedestrians.

Napa County’s new bike plan proposes another 453 miles of bikeways, to compliment the county’s existing 142 miles. Although those totals include bike routes, which are pretty meaningless except for wayfinding. And not always then.

A Marin columnist says a six-month trial period for a bikeway on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge makes sense, saying it should go back to a car lane if it has low ridership during peak hours. Only if cars get just a six-month trial period to prove it actually cuts congestion before reverting back to a bike lane.

National

Bloomberg endorses the Dutch Reach to prevent doorings and save bicyclists’ lives.

Bicycling celebrates Black History Month with 15 “rad, influential and super-fast cyclists” they say you need to follow on Instagram.

More from Bicycling, arguing that if Congress is serious about fighting climate change, any Green New Deal has to include support for bicycling.

The Onion says always make eye contact with drivers, so they’ll feel guiltier when they run you over. The satirical newspaper adds that “only 62 total Americans are intelligent and thoughtful enough to operate a motor vehicle.”

Inspired by Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath, five Australian musicians rode their bikes from Sallisaw OK to Bakersfield to recreate the Joad family’s journey on just $420 — the modern equivalent of the $18 the Joads got for selling all their belongings — busking and relying on handouts along the way for the rest.

A Minnesota man raised $30,000 dollars for charity by riding his bike 11,000 miles around the permitter of the lower 48 states, saying it wasn’t as hard as he thought it would be.

A bike-riding Tennessee columnist says bicyclists don’t deserve the treatment we get from motorists. Amen, brother.

A speeding drunk driver gets a well-deserved five years behind bars for killing a 74-year old Boston grandfather as he was riding his bike.

She gets it. Writing for The Conversation, a Harvard research scientist says bicycle-friendly cities should be designed for everyone, not just wealthy white cyclists.

A Connecticut man is living his best life as a self-appointed, bike-riding costumed traffic superhero.

A columnist for the New York Post gets it, saying drivers need to start paying to use the city’s streets in order to fight traffic congestion.

No one seems to know why bicycle and pedestrian deaths are up in the DC area. Although I think most bike riders and pedestrians could take some pretty good guesses.

International

An automotive website asks if a McLaren designer has created the perfect folding ebike.

A travel writer for the LA Times experiences a carfree ciclovia in Santiago, Chile.

The late, great Albert Finney got his start playing a blue collar worker in a British bicycle factory.

British comic Rowen Atkinson is one of us in real life, as well as on the screen.

An 82-year old English great grandmother is back riding a bike despite losing her vision, thanks to a local bike library’s program to get blind people on tandems.

Residents of Glasgow, Scotland hold hands to form a human-protected bike lane to call for a more concrete one. Thanks to Megan Lynch.

The Winter Bike to Work Day was a success in Minsk, Russia.

A pair of German bike tourists pause in the United Arab Emirates on their three-year journey around the world, saying the country has the worst traffic they’ve seen.

No bias here. The Daily Mail says Aussie truck drivers are outraged after bike riders won a three-year battle to have large trucks banned from a busy street, rather than focusing on a successful effort to improve safety and traffic flow.

An Australian website asks if it’s a country of horn-honking hulks and road-ragers, noting that one in five Aussies say they’ve experienced road rage or aggressive driving directed towards people on bicycles.

“Anarchistic” rogue mountain bikers are being blamed for the extinction of the endangered plants in an Australian national park.

An Australian professor bizarrely compares advocates calling for an end to the country’s mandatory bike helmet laws to climate-change deniers and anti-vaxxers.

More proof that drivers are the same everywhere. Four days after opening the Philippines’ first protected bike lane, drivers are already using it as just another traffic or parking lane.

A Japanese newspaper says bike riders need to have better manners and be prepared to pay significant damages for crashes with pedestrians, as a government panel considers what would be the right level of compensation.

Competitive Cycling

British pro Scott Auld tells how survived a chain reaction crash caused by a careless driver that sent him down a ravine, and nearly cost him his life.

Sad news from Pakistan where a 4-time national champion died of cancer at just 32 years old.

Finally…

When you’re setting off on a bike tour of another country, it’s usually best not to start out riding salmon on a major highway. Who needs an ebike when you’ve got a strong dog?

And at last someone’s come up with a solution to LA’s crushing traffic problems.

Just let me know when Fleet Week rolls around.

………

Thanks to Danila O for her generous donation to support this site, and keep bringing SoCal’s best bike news coming your way every day. Donations of any amount are welcome any time, for any reason.

Morning Links: Report on bicycling in LA goes well, even if few will ever see it, and Ride 4 Love rolls tomorrow

Good news and bad news.

The good news is yesterday’s taping of Spectrum News 1’s Inside the Issues went well.

And the finished product offered an effective overview of the good, bad and very ugly of riding a bicycle in the City of Angels.

The bad news, Spectrum doesn’t post their programs online.

Which means there’s nothing we can link to. And anyone who didn’t tune in last night, or who doesn’t subscribe to Spectrum Cable, is out of luck.

That also means that most of the people in Los Angeles who need to see it most will never get the chance.

Hopefully, they’ll put a few segments online, which I’ll try to share with you when they become available.

………

One of these days, I hope to actually make it down to South LA for the annual Ride 4 Love, which rolls tomorrow.

………

Local

LA-based Swrve makes Bike Radar’s list of the best cycling clothes for rain.

The LACBC is hosting a training ride up Franklin Canyon tomorrow.

Over 500 bicyclists are expected to ride up to 100 miles through the San Gabriel Valley starting and ending at the Rose Bowl in next month’s Bike MS: Los Angeles 2019 ride.

Congratulations to Palmdale, which officially has the longest commutes in the US.

State

San Diego’s Bicycle Advisory Board is riding off into the sunset as the city replaces it with a new Mobility Advisory Board.

The new bridge to UC San Diego over I-5 opens today, bringing a more direct walking and biking route for students and faculty.

A Ramona firefighter returned home after raising $12,000 for charity by riding 2,500 across the US from San Diego to Florida.

Greater equity is coming to Modesto, as the city plans to invest over $6 million in new sidewalks and bike lanes in one of its poorest neighborhoods.

One more reason why drivers shouldn’t be allowed to steal a lane from bicyclists on the double-decker Richmond-San Rafael Bridge — bikes are lighter than cars, as large chunks of concrete fell from the top span onto unsuspecting drivers below.

National

You can kiss the last few Performance Bicycle stores — and the people who work in them — goodbye, as the company plans to close all remaining brick-and-mortar stores within the next month; however, they will continue to do business online. Meanwhile, an industry website considers how bike shops can buck the trend of retail store closures.

That’s more like it. A Bellingham WA housing development will open with 164 units, but just 100 parking spaces, along with spaces for 392 bicycles.

An Arizona driver kindly helped a young girl to the curb after hitting her bicycle, told her the same thing had happened to her as a girl — then drove off, leaving her victim stranded on the curb with a dead cellphone.

A Texas woman has ridden at least 100 miles in every state in the US, finishing last year with a ride through South Dakota.

A gang of bike thieves is breaking into small Chicago bike shops and stealing at least $70,000 worth of high-end bicycles.

A Chicago minibike rider will face well-deserved charges for groping a woman riding a bicycle, then punching out her husband when he chased her assailant down.

Instead of responding to an increase in bicycling and pedestrian death by going after the people in the big, dangerous machines, New York police are cracking down on the people on two wheels, in some cases ticketing bike riders from violations that don’t actually exist.

Meanwhile, an NYPD officer physically assaulted a bike rider, pushing him off his bicycle to issue a simple traffic ticket, just a block from where another rider was killed in a hit-and-run earlier this week; New York advocates plan a massive rally in protest. That’s like grabbing a driver and throwing him out of his car into the street just because he didn’t use a turn signal.

International

A new conversion kit will allow you to turn your existing bicycle into an ebike for about $700.

A Montreal veterinarian makes house calls by cargo bike.

No shit. A Canadian woman says justice wasn’t served in the hit-and-run death of her bike-riding father, after his killer served just one month of an all-ready too lenient six month sentence.

After his father called the police on him, a British man asked if he could change his shirt before being arrested, then trapped the officers in his own living room before escaping on his bicycle.

A man from the UK rode 10,000 miles through 20 countries in memory of his brother, starting in his hometown and ending in China.

The Wall Street Journal offers a video look at Tel Aviv’s unlikely embrace of e-scooters. Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.

A new Australian study claims the country’s mandatory helmet laws have cut bicycling fatalities nearly in half, suggesting 1,332 lives have been saved since the laws were introduced in the 1990s, and finding no evidence that bicycling rates have been reduced as a result of them.

Competitive Cycling

Ex-Tour de France champ and current cannabis purveyor Floyd Landis returns to his Mennonite roots, opening a bike, coffee and CBD shop in Lancaster PA not far from his childhood home.

The good news, former Columbian pro Juan Pablo Valencia Gonzales wasn’t accused of doping. The bad, he was arrested by Italian authorities on drug trafficking charges after he was found in possession of over 60 grams of cocaine he had allegedly transported in the seat tube of his bike.

Finally…

Edinburgh’s bikeshare system is going downhill — literally.

And when you get impatient waiting behind a group of bike riders at traffic light, try not to pull out into a garbage truck.

Morning Links: BikinginLA on Spectrum News 1 tonight, the war on bikes, and brazen bike theft in DTLA

Once again, we have a veritable metric ton of bike news today.

But before we start, I’m going to be on the Spectrum News 1 channel’s Inside the Issues program tonight, hosted by former NPR and KPCC anchor Alex Cohen.

I’ll be joining Curbed LA’s inestimable Alissa Walker, new LACBC Executive Director Eli Akira Kaufman, and Romel Pascual, Executive Director of CicLAvia to paint the Spectrum audience a portrait of biking in Los Angeles, good, bad and otherwise.

I tried to recommend a few other bike advocates with better insights and more TV-friendly faces, but for some reason, they wanted mine.

Go figure.

So let’s just hope I don’t break your TV.

Inside the Issues airs at 7 pm on channel 1 if you’re an LA-area Spectrum Cable subscriber. If not, it should be posted online at the above link sometime after it airs.

Who knows. Maybe I can parlay this into a talking head role as the highly paid bike pundit for CNN.

It could happen.

Let’s all play a drinking game tonight.

Take a sip every time I mention aggressive or distracted drivers, and take a shot every time I say “traffic safety deniers.”

If I do my job right, by the time the show’s over, no one will care whether I screwed up or not.

………

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

Leaders of a town in Maine wisely rejected a draconian anti-bike ordinance proposed by a local man after being told that parts of it conflicted with state law.

Or more likely, nearly all of it.

According to the local paper, the ordinance would have imposed the following restrictions, which probably would have killed bike riding entirely in the town.

  • Bicyclists are not allowed to ride on streets that have no bike safety lane
  • Bicyclists are  not allowed to ride side by side and must be at least 10 feet apart.
  • Bicyclists older than 16 must register their bike with the town;
  • Bicyclists are not allowed to wear head phones, sound-preventing device or any type of hearing distraction; and
  • Bicyclists could be fined $250 for the first offense and $500 for subsequent ones.

The man claimed he drafted it “out of concern for ‘human lives'” after seeing some people ride unsafely.

Just a reminder that there are people out there who would gladly take away our right to the road based on the actions of a few.

Or just restrict it in ways that serve the same purpose.

………

The war on bikes, part two.

A San Diego cyclist says a truck driver attempted to run him and his riding partners off the road.

Reporting the miscreant driver to his employer was the right thing to do.

However, it’s also a crime; attempting to deliberately run down someone on a bicycle or run them off the road is assault with a deadly weapon. Which means he should also be reported to the police, especially if there’s video evidence of the attack.

Even if the police can’t do anything now, they’ll have a report on file that may be useful if the driver does it again to someone else.

It was the prior police reports that didn’t result in prosecution that finally helped make the case against Dr. Christopher Thompson in the infamous Mandeville Canyon brake check.

………

Somehow we missed this one last month.

David Drexler forwards video of a brazen tag-team bike theft in broad daylight on a busy street in DTLA, directly in front of Whole Foods.

Watch to the end to see just how much teamwork went into it.

………

The Anaheim Police Department says share the road in a new video posted on Facebook, explaining to an angry driver that bike riders have the right to take the lane.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the link.

………

British TV personality Jeremy Vine had what has to be the close call of the day, if not the year, as an impatient and overly aggressive driver buzzed him while passing in the bike lane he was riding in.

………

Local

Los Angeles has opened applications for Great Streets Challenge Grants to improve a traffic corridor near and dear to your heart. Or not.

Metro Bike’s docked bikeshare hasn’t been a hit in San Pedro, where it has the lowest use rate of any of the four regions in Los Angeles County.

Metro’s Boyle Heights public meeting to discuss plans to close an eight-mile gap in the LA River bike path was briefly interrupted by anti-gentrification activists. The final meeting will take place tonight in Cypress Park — hopefully without further interruptions.

A Moreno Valley bike rider was busted in Santa Monica for riding salmon, riding without a light, and delaying a police officer — evidently by making them look for her when she tried to flee the traffic stop. The first two are just ticketable offenses, so she must have really pissed them off.

State

State officials announced the latest round of active transportation grants; a project in Compton was removed from the list, while Pomona received $9.2 million to improve bicycling and walking, including 10 miles of new bike lanes.

A homeless man was sentenced to two years behind bars for beating another transient with his bicycle before attacking two Santa Ana police officers who tried to intervene.

San Diego’s Bicycle Advisory Board held a news conference yesterday calling for more protected bike lanes.

A woman in San Diego’s South Park neighborhood is on a one-woman crusade against e-scooters.

A San Diego County bike rider is suing the county and Caltrans after he was seriously injured as he attempted to dodge a clump of asphalt in a bike lane not far from a road construction site.

The annual Tour de Palm Springs returns this weekend, with a focus on safety after the death of Mark Kristofferson in last year’s event.

Cycle Central Coast recommends a romantic bike weekend for two in Cambria this Valentines Day.

Horrifying story from Fresno, where a pair of 22-year old twins got a well-deserved 12 years for beating up a Good Samaritan who rode his bike to the rescue of a woman they were attacking, and leaving him lying in the road, where he was run over by a passing motorist.

Maybe you want to try a little Viking trail biking around Mount Shasta.

National

At least one American company is absorbing Trump’s 25% tariff on ebikes, rather than passing the added costs onto their customers.

Curbed looks at plans for the coast-to-coast, offroad Great American Rail-Trail rail-to-trail conversion bikeway.

Hawaii’s Big Island is establishing a Vision Zero program.

You could soon go mountain biking at Kentucky’s National Corvette Museum. Yes, that’s the one where a massive sinkhole swallowed eight classic Corvettes.

Hugh Jackman is one of us. The Daily Mail says he risked a $50 fine for texting while riding in the Big Apple. Except photos show he’s fully stopped on the sidewalk with one foot firmly planted on the ground.

New York advocates says the city shouldn’t cancel plans for improved bike lanes and other commuting projects, even though a planned shutdown of a major subway has been cancelled.

A Mississippi bike shop is taking community service a step further by offering naloxone to reverse the effects of a drug overdose, after the owners’ son died of an OD.

A teenaged serial horse molester — yes, that’s a thing — was arrested with a large sex toy while riding his bike in Mobile, Alabama.

International

A hacking website considers ways people around the world hack their bikes to serve various purposes, from knife sharpening to carrying multiple gas cylinders.

Snowy Halifax, Nova Scotia is gearing up for Friday’s International Winter Bike Week with a full week of winter bike events. The forecast for Halifax calls for a rainy 45° on Friday; Los Angeles should be sunny and 15 degrees warmer. Just saying.

An English man recovered his bicycle the same day it was stolen, after he spotted it being sold online by a drug dealer.

British bicyclists and pedestrians will get to be guinea pigs for self-driving cars, with autonomous vehicles hitting the street starting in 2021, even though critics say the tech isn’t ready yet.

No surprise here, as a new survey shows Brits would still rather drive a car than ride a bike or take a bus; four in ten people had a favorable view of bicycling, while nearly half took the opposing view.

Royal-adjacent James Middleton — brother-in-law to the UK’s future king — once again drew stares taking four large dogs for a ride in his covered bakfiets.

This is the cost of traffic violence, too. A British woman overdosed on heroin in her Paris apartment as she struggled to cope with killing a teenage bike rider; she had moved to Paris after the breakup of her marriage following the crash.

Unbelievable. Life is really cheap in Australia, where a road raging driver who killed a bike rider walks with the equivalent of home arrest, community service and a $5,000 fine.

The Philippines has opened the country’s first protected bike lane along the National Highway.

Competitive Cycling

Downhill snow biking is now officially a thing, with a UCI World Cup planned for next year.

Finally…

Do your cycling inside and you might get booted if Madonna wants your stationary bike. That feeling when you announce the death of BMX star just three years after it actually happened.

And that feeling when you have to cancel the annual bike ride scheduled for the worst weather day of the year, because of the worst weather of the year.

Thanks to Bob Wilkinson for the last link. And yes, that’s frequent contributor Mike Wilkinson’s dad.

Morning Links: Mad as hell drivers and they’re not going to take it anymore, and BOLO Alert for CA bike thief

Talk about not getting it.

A self-described “avid cyclist” — and, ahem, president and CEO of the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association — just doesn’t get why the automobile has become a public enemy, arguing that a fundamentally American freedom is under attack.

You know, the freedom for drivers to spew smog into the air with your gas guzzling SUV, which is right up there with freedom of speech or religion.

Except virtually every argument he makes for why the state shouldn’t adopt California’s clean air standard works against him.

Maybe he’s never tried to breath Denver’s air during one of the city’s frequent winter temperature inversions. Let alone heard of climate change.

Then there’s this tired old myth.

Meanwhile, some cities have put their drivers on forced road diets. They are reducing lanes available to drivers on key arterial streets.

Part of the motivation is to increase bicycle and bus lanes. But again, this gift comes at a cost to drivers. The goal is to discourage driving by intentionally reducing capacity and creating traffic congestion by design. Backers say it’s more “people friendly” — at least for people who don’t need to drive.

The bottom line is they want to force more residents to use alternative transportation by making driving as unpleasant as possible.

Because those road diets couldn’t possibly be about slowing traffic and keeping those people in cars alive long enough to get back home.

Or reducing congestion so that people who need to drive, or simply choose to, can actually get where they’re going in a timely manner.

But maybe that’s what happens when you only see the world through the perspective of your own windshield while driving your bike hundreds of miles to that distant trailhead.

Not to mention when your own bank account depends on convincing other people to buy those bigass trucks and SUVs.

But hey, no bias there.

Right?

………

Then again, he’s not the only one.

A writer for a motorists’ website devoted to maintaining automobiles über alles says recreational roadies are okay, but those urban bike advocates are just Vision Zero zealots dedicated to forcing poor, innocent drivers like himself off the roads. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

And credit Peter Flax with uncovering gem from a guy who’s not going to let the sick tyranny of a small minority of anti-car extremists push him onto disease-filled public transit.

No, really.

………

Bike thief BOLO alert.

Fresno police are urging you to be on the lookout for 32-year old alleged bike thief Marlon Markham, who is wanted for buying bicycles with fraudulent credit cards under a variety of names throughout California.

He then reportedly sells the bikes online.

In addition to the Central Valley, he’s struck in the Bay Area, and in Burbank and Huntington Beach in SoCal.

Photo from Bicycle Retailer

………

Local

Metro Bike begins what so far is a very limited expansion into Koreatown.

State

Friends and family members gathered at the ghost bike for fallen Aliso Viejo bike rider Michael David Tomlinson for a candlelight vigil and to remember him, nearly a week after he was killed by a hit-and-run driver.

Over 40 military veterans took part in the annual Soldier Ride in Del Mar over the weekend, sponsored by the Wounded Warrior Project.

Berkeley plans a Complete Streets makeover of a popular bicycling route to support and grow the city’s 8.5% bike rate. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

Streetsblog notes that Oakland has finally gotten it right on protecting bike riders in a construction zone. On one block, anyway.

A Richmond paper examines how the city’s Rich City Rides co-op helps transform lives one bike at a time — exemplified by a 15-year old homeless boy who searches the city for kids without bikes to help them earn one.

Once again, an independent student newspaper at UC Davis mistakenly thinks that violence against bike riders is funny, publishing what they believe passes for satire about someone kicking bikeshare riders off their ebikes.

A Davis judge rules that a bike seat can be a deadly weapon, after a father and son were attacked by a man who threw his bike at them after removing the seat, then used the seat as weapon.

National

Singletracks offers tips on how to reduce your risk of injuries from mountain bike crashes. The most effective way is just don’t ride mountain bikes, but that kind of defeats the purpose.

City Lab says the micromobility gold rush is just beginning.

In a move that really shouldn’t surprise anyone, Utah’s legislature hit the brakes on a proposal to legalize the Idaho Stop in the state.

In yet another example of keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late, an allegedly drunk San Antonio hit-and-run driver had a prior arrest for driving while intoxicated, but with no record of a trial or guilty plea; her victim was a local surgeon. Thanks to Stephen Katz for the tip.

A 72-year old Wisconsin driver faces a vehicular homicide charge for the death of a bike-riding pediatrician, claiming he couldn’t brake in time to prevent the crash — even though he rear-ended the victim while driving half off the road.

Someone should tell Bowling Green, Ohio that sharrows aren’t Complete Streets.

Two years later, Pittsburgh bike riders and pedestrians still feel safer sharing the road with self-driving vehicles than with human drivers, whether or not they’ve actually encountered one.

Bikeshare continues its spread across the US, as Portland — no, the one in Maine — moves towards establishing their own system.

DC moves to protect pedestrians and bicyclists by banning right turns on red lights at 100 intersections.

A University of Florida study shows that Strava really can be used to help city planners design better bikeways.

International

Cycling Weekly offers advice on how to avoid back and shoulder pain caused by riding a bike.

Seriously? A Canadian judge acquits a truck driver, saying sure, he had to have seen the bike rider he killed before he right hooked her, but that doesn’t mean he actually, you know, noticed her. Oh, and that failure to signal or wait for the green turn arrow? No biggie.

Calgary’s winter bicyclists get new bike racks that are part bike parking, part public art. I’ll settle for anything that actually keeps my bike safe. Like maybe a fully operational tank.

A Hamilton, Ontario columnist misses the point, saying you can’t redesign roads to get rid of reflexive carelessness or stupidity. Even though that’s exactly the idea behind Vision Zero, to engineer roads so careless mistakes don’t lead to needless tragedies.

Life is cheap in Canada, where a careless driver who killed one bike rider and injured two others walks with a lousy $1,800 fine.

A British 14-time Paralympic gold medallist gets it, saying build bike lanes that are fit for everyone, and not just the brave.

The family of a fallen UK bike rider complain about the six-year sentence given to the driver who killed her while “extremely drunk” and high on coke.

An Irish driver will face charges for plowing into a club ride in 2017, killing one rider and critically injuring another.

Kiwi bicyclists complained about over 100 close passes by bus drivers last year. Although it’s not so easy to complain about getting knocked over when you can’t find out what bus company did it.

The Philippine legislature is considering the equivalent of a nearly five-foot passing law, with penalties starting at $95 for the first offense, and increasing with each additional violation.

Speaking of the Philippines, is anyone really in the mood to bike the full route of the infamous Bataan Death March? Didn’t think so.

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews offers their thoughts on the upcoming Amgen Tour of California, saying the men’s side will come down to Peter Sagan versus Fernando Gaviria, while the women will face their first hors categorie climb with the Mt. Baldy finish.

Former world champion mountain biker Hans Rey has helped provide more than 11,000 free bicycles to people in 30 countries through his Wheels4Life charity.

Finally…

Try taking your bike off the roof rack before going through a drive-thru next time. Sure, he may be an armed robber — and a Chargers fan — but anyone who makes his getaway by bike can’t be all bad.

And the SaMo PD posse was in full pursuit of a stolen car.

Morning Links: Fight over road diets goes national, flooding closes GMR, and Emperor Norton was one of us

Let’s start with an important piece from Streetsblog’s Joe Linton about the efforts of traffic safety deniers Keep LA Moving to take their crackpot anti-road diet fight national.

Advocates, alert: “Keep L.A. Moving,” a small, vindictive group of well-heeled westsiders with little regard for the safety of L.A.’s most vulnerable and disadvantaged residents, is now pushing its disinformation to a national audience – or, at least, attempting to – by rebranding itself as “Keep The U.S. Moving…”

As bicycle advocate Peter Flax has noted, KLAM’s work seems to thrive best in closed-door conservative echo chambers, like Nextdoor and closed Facebook groups. From there, they work to seed aligned broadcast media, including right-wing radio, where their claims are not questioned. When their dubious assertions, for example “[road diets cause] more accidents, more pollution, more gridlock, heavy traffic,” are actually aired in public debate, or studied using actual real world data, they just don’t hold up.

Like climate change deniers, these “Keep Moving” groups deny data-based studies showing that speed kills and that road diets work

Behind all their crackpot assertions is the empowerment of drivers in well-to-do communities. These ideologues push for unfettered driver access at the expense of safety for all road users, particularly those who have the fewest mobility choices available to them and who are most at-risk to harm. The “right” of this handful of disgruntled drivers to speed is costing the lives of tens of thousands of people in the U.S. every year. Unfortunately, this is a double whammy to low-income communities of color, whose residents continue to die at higher rates. And as Rutgers’ Charles Brown points out, minority communities overlooked for road diet safety improvements “receive enforcement” instead.

It’s well worth clicking the link to read all of Linton’s hard-hitting story.

Because these are the people who, so far at least, have succeeded in halting road diets and other vital safety measures in Los Angeles, keeping our streets dangerous and deadly so people like them can continue to drive unimpeded.

At least until LA’s inevitable encroaching gridlock forces them to a full stop.

And if they have their way, everywhere.

………

Popular riding route Glendora Mountain Road is closed until further notice due to flooding.

………

Robs Muir sends us photographic proof that San Francisco’s beloved Emperor Norton was one of us, too.

Bancroft Library, U.C. Berkeley

………

Anyone planning to ride to work this Friday for International Winter Bike to Work Day?

If you want to discuss it with a reporter for the new Spectrum News 1 channel, email Jada Montemarano at [email protected].

………

Local

Speaking of Spectrum News 1, they offer a nice piece on South LA’s Black Kids on Bikes, which isn’t just for kids. Or African-Americans.

UCLA is offering a week-long, 550-mile bike tour along the California coast to learn firsthand about the impacts of climate change, and possible solutions. Solution #1 — ditch the car, and ride a bike. Thanks to Audrey Kopp for the heads-up.

A Pasadena neighborhood association says the city’s proposed Cordova Street traffic calming project has a lot to like, even if it doesn’t connect with the Gold Line.

The Signal takes a look at Santa Clarita’s new Pace docked bikeshare system.

State

Can you say, duh? A San Diego TV station reports a sharp increase in traffic tickets issued to scooter riders last year — which makes sense, since it was the first full year they were in operation.

Work is almost finished on San Francisco’s newest protected bike lane.

Sonoma officials identify the homeless man who was beaten to death by two other men in a dispute over bicycle; he had served as a mentor to other people who were new to the streets.

Sacramento is the next California city to get e-scooters.

National

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss says chill out about that scary sounding medical study on e-scooter injuries, noting that only 15 of the 249 victims were injured seriously enough to require hospitalization.

Outside examines how energy bars became America’s favorite snack food.

A writer for Fast Company takes a spin in a 300-pound e-trike, and pronounces it the future of urban deliveries.

A driving website calls the micromobility movement part revolution and part gold rush, naming 2018 the Year of the Scooter.

No surprise here. Denver’s docked bikeshare system is losing riders to the convenience of e-scooters.

The mayor of a Chicago suburb threatens to ticket every member of a group ride if they don’t stop for every stop sign. Yes, they are legally required to stop. Even though it would piss off every driver on the street street when they proceed through every intersection one at a time.

Chicago Streetsblog looks back on the life of a bike courier in the 1990s. Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the link.

A Massachusetts town wants to become a bicycling city, building on a bike heritage that goes back over 100 years. Although honestly, just about every city and town can say that; it’s what happened in the past 50 or 60 years that matters.

David Drexler forwards a Bloomberg piece about the reasons for a sudden uptick in New York Uber and taxi fares, which ends with “Have you considered biking?”

Great idea. Bike riders in Athens, Georgia can get discounts at participating businesses by attaching a $5 sticker to their helmets.

No bias here. A Georgia college student gets the blame in the local media for hitting a bus with his bike, when he was actually right-hooked as he came off the sidewalk. Yes, he should have slowed or stopped before riding out into the crosswalk, and probably shouldn’t have been on the sidewalk in the first place. But the driver bears responsibility for apparently not noticing him on the sidewalk and pausing to let him cross the street.

International

Cycling Weekly offers 13 inspirational cycling quotes to live your life by. Personally, I like the one from South African Bishop Desmond Tutu.

A British Columbia high school student returned home from an international environmental engineering competition with a bronze medal for her solar-powered e-trike.

A Hamilton, Ontario safety advocate says the city’s Vision Zero plan is a lot of fluff. Not that Los Angeles bike riders and pedestrians can relate that or anything.

This is who we share the roads with. A London motorist suffered serious injuries when a road raging driver intentionally plowed into him as he stood next to his car following a minor collision; no word on whether the other driver was arrested.

A British food delivery rider faces a charge of willful misconduct for a bike crash that left an eight-year old girl with a fractured skull.

Scraping the bottom of the ethical barrel, a driver in the UK faked brain damage to avoid doing jail time for killing a man on a bike while driving at twice the speed limit on the wrong side of the road; he’s now doing six and a half well-deserved years.

London’s Telegraph recommends Dubai’s “surprisingly mountainous” bicycling routes.

Some drivers continue to say bike riders are hard to see. Apparently, so are Australian garbage trucks.

Aussie medical professionals are sounding the alarm about dangerous aggression from motorists directed towards people on bicycles. Or as we call that in Los Angeles, Tuesday. Or any other day, for that matter.

Competitive Cycling

British pro cyclist Scott Auld was lucky to escape with a broken collarbone and various other injuries when he was the victim of a car crash while training in Spain; he was riding on the inside of a double pace line when the rider next to him was clipped by a driver on the wrong side of the road, crashing into him and sending him flying down a ravine.

Finally…

Who needs wheels when you’ve got skis? When you’re semi-royal, love dogs and the press has no idea what a cargo bike is.

And if you’re on parole with outstanding warrants, carrying an illegal weapon and ghost riding another bike along with yours, put a damn light on it — 

Your bike, not the other one.

Or maybe both.

Morning Links: A bike path in the rain, Major Taylor rides again, the war on bikes, and who we share the roads with

Greetings from Los Angeles, America’s second-place city™.

The Super Bowl is over, but the rain isn’t.

So be careful out there. Light yourself up even during day rides, and ride defensively, because drivers assume no one in their right mind would ride a bike in weather like this.

And they may be right.

But when has that ever stopped us?

And let’s hope none of those drivers were inspired watching yesterday’s game, and decide to drive like the people in car ads.

My apologies to anyone who sent me links over the weekend. While I truly appreciate it, I’m afraid I lost track of some of the people who sent them. So please accept my apologies, as well as my thanks.

………

In case you wondered, this is why they close the bike path on the LA River, and other water-adjacent bike paths, when it rains.

………

Even a separated bike path isn’t safe when it rains, as this driver ended up upside down on the San Gabriel River bike path.

Thanks to Bike SGV for the heads-up.

………

The New York Times gives the legendary Major Taylor the obituary he deserved, but never got, when he died penniless in the 1930s.

Known as the Black Cyclone, he was the first African American cycling world champ, and just the second in any sport.

And like those who integrated other sports, he had to overcome hatred and prejudice, as well his opponents on the track.

He also made a brief splash in yesterday’s Super Bowl.

Unlike a certain LA team we could name.

………

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

After a New York bike rider raps on a man’s car to chastise him for parking in a bike lane, the driver gets out and threatens to shoot her in the head if she does it again.

Which is a nice, psychopathic response to a totally non-threatening gesture.

In a bizarre case, an 8-year old South Carolina boy claims a car full of men stopped next to him as he rode his bike, and the driver pulled a gun on him for no apparent reason.

A Florida man says a pickup driver forced his bicycle off the road, then attacked him with a metal pipe.

………

This is who we share the roads with.

………

Local

Streetsblog reports on meetings being held to discuss options to close the 8-mile gap in the LA River bike path through DTLA; one last meeting will be held in Cypress Park on Thursday.

Urbanize Los Angeles offers a better look at the streetscape improvements coming to Broadway and Manchester in South LA.

A Nigerian journalist offers a tourist’s eye view of the City of Angeles, including a bike tour of Venice, after an Ethiopian airline begins direct flights from Togo. Although he seems to confused Los Angeles with San Diego, size-wise.

A Long Beach police detective is in deep trouble after a pair of allegedly drunken and/or stoned crashes, including fleeing the scene after rear-ending a bike rider in Marina del Rey, followed by crashing into another driver on the 405; she was released on $100,000 bond. Thanks to John McBrearty for the heads-up.

This is why people keep dying on our streets. Police in Gardena pulled over a suspected drunk driver who was weaving across the street, with a BAC over four times the legal limit — a level so high it’s usually fatal. He was already on probation for a previous DUI, and had an interlock device on his ignition, which he somehow managed to defeat.

State

Costa Mesa officials discuss plans for a buffered bike lane and multi-use path on Merrimac Way.

San Diego lifeguards rescued a half dozen dockless bikes that had been tossed off a cliff into the ocean, spotting and retrieving them while on a training mission.

San Diego’s Planning Commission voted to eliminate parking requirements within a half mile of major transit stops.

Bakersfield police are looking for a hit-and-run driver who left a bike-riding woman with major injuries.

A San Jose columnist credits bike lanes with a drop in bike and pedestrian deaths last year, equalling the number of homicides in the city, which is not necessarily a good thing. In the same piece, a former prosecutor and defense attorney tries to excuse DUIs, saying everyone does it and drunk drivers should get off with just a diversion class. I’m not saying he’s completely full of shit, but if someone gave him an enema, he probably disappear entirely.  

The San Jose Mercury News says Complete Streets are spreading across the state. Except in Los Angeles, of course, where too many councilmembers lack the courage to stand up to NIMBYs and traffic safety deniers.

Bicycling and transit use have both dropped in San Francisco in recent years, as the overwhelming majority of people still prefer cars.

Is anyone really surprised that a pair of scooter providers have failed to live up to the promises they made to get permits to operate in San Francisco?

A man on a bike is accused of attacking and choking a Novato hiker after she tried to stop him from kicking her dog.

Horrible news from Napa, where a grandfather was beaten to death while riding on a local bike path. Meanwhile, in nearby Santa Rosa, a homeless man was beaten to death by two men who accused him of stealing a bicycle. Seriously, no bike is worth that.

Nice gesture from the Butte County Sheriff’s Office, which gave away 600 bicycles to children affected by the devastating Camp Fire.

National

No, a Peloton bike probably won’t get you the body of your dreams.

Lime is pulling their dockless bikes from St. Louis, replacing them with e-scooters.

Stephen Katz forwards a rare story of forgiveness, as the family of a bike rider killed by a dangerous bus driver on the campus of the University of Texas decides to turn the other cheek.

Oh, hell no. A proposed update to Rhode Island’s transportation budget would gut bicycle funding by shifting over $31 million into highway projects.

A New York teacher is planning to bike across the US to raise money for cancer patients, just two years after she had open-heart surgery.

International

Mazatlan, Mexico now has a docked bikeshare system, which will eventually grow to 350 bikes and 50 stations.

A self-described avid cyclist in Windsor, Ontario says there’s got to be a better way to improve bicycling without removing parking or traffic lanes for bike lanes. If he knows one, maybe he could actually make a suggestion or two.

London considers establishing an app-based bikeshare system; no, not that London. Meanwhile, a writer in the other London is looking forward to getting e-scooters on the streets trod by Nelson, Churchill and Dickens. And Jack the Ripper.

Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas offers UK readers advice on buying a bike, from ebikes and single speeds to gravel bikes and roadies. No offense, but is a pro cyslist who probably hasn’t bought his own bike in years really the best person to offer advice to casual and transportation riders?

I love a story with a happy ending. Carlton Reid tells the tale of a Brit CEO who traded his Mercedes supercar for an e-cargo bike. And lived healthier and happier ever after.

In today’s edition of two countries divided by a common language, English authorities warn people not to ride croggy. And yes, I had to click the link to learn what the hell that meant. Just like you will.

After police caught up with a British hit-and-run driver, she claimed she didn’t stop because she didn’t do anything wrong, and that the bike rider she ran down was trying to get hit. No, really, Because we all enjoy pain, especially when it’s delivered at the end of a bumper.

Great Britain’s future heir and two spares enjoy daily bike rides and dog walks, as Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis — third, fourth and fifth in line for the British crown once their father and granddad kick the bucket — enjoy a relatively normal upbringing with their self-defense and evasive driving-trained nanny.

Horrifying story from Scotland, where a driver hit an Edinburgh bicyclist with his van, talked him into getting inside to take him somewhere to get help — then dumped him in the street a few blocks away, dragging him out by his leg.

NPR considers how women are breaking the taboo against bicycling in Karachi, Pakistan.

A woman in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia is leading the way to get more women on bikes in the conservative country, with 7,000 followers on her social media account dedicated to bicycling.

A Kenyan state governor shocks everyone by riding a bicycle to work sans security detail.

Social media users are calling a South African high school student a hero for swooping in on his bicycle to rescue a schoolmate who was being attacked, and losing his phone in the process.

A Kiwi columnist says don’t waste time arguing over e-scooters, when the real danger is quad bikes. Which aren’t really bikes at all, since they have four wheels.

One of Australia’s most wanted men is taking that feeling of being invisible on a bike seriously, hiding out from the authorities on a bicycle.

Competitive Cycling

Belgium’s Sanne Cant clearly can, winning her third consecutive cyclocross world title. Although it kind of sucks when your own father costs you the title, as second-place Lucinda Brand learned the hard way.

Speaking of which, the ‘cross worlds will come to Walmart’s neck of the woods in three years, as Fayetteville, Arkansas is awarded the 2022 meet.

When a pair of Pro Continental riders found themselves unemployed after their Aqua Blue Sport team folded, they got their cycling mojo back by bikepacking across the alps.

Fat bike racing in the recent Minnesota polar vortex.

When the cycling team from India’s Rajasthan state showed up for the country’s national championships, they were forced to sleep on the floor under the velodrome.

Finally…

Repeat after me — when you’re carrying coke, weed and prescription drugs on your bike at 4:30 am, put a light on it. When you’re riding your bike with an outstanding warrant and weed in your pockets, put a damn light on it, already. Chances are you make a lousy travel companion.

And feel free to do this on the mayor’s desk if I ever get killed in a crash.

Morning Links: Super Bowl biking, Malibu road closures, Triple Crown Rider dies, and surprise! they’re cops

Rumor has it there’s a football game this weekend.

Which makes Sunday the perfect time to ride, if you can avoid those SoCal raindrops and get back before the drunks hit the road.

Maybe even before they start their beer runs.

Or join the LACBC — maybe even literally — for a historic spin around San Fernando and Pacoima before the game starts. Update: The ride has been cancelled due to threat of rain.

You should be home in plenty of time for the kickoff. Or the first commercials, if that’s what you’re into.

And in honor of the Super Bowl, let’s take another look at what may be the most innocuous, ineffectual Vision Zero ad in human history.

No offense to the Rams punter, who did his best with a crappy script and a weak concept.

Maybe someday Los Angeles will actually take Vision Zero seriously, and come up with a hard-hitting message targeting the city’s entitled drivers.

We can dream, can’t we?

………

If you’re planning to take advantage of a break in the storms to ride PCH or any of the canyons in the ‘Bu this weekend, watch out for road closures, mud flows and boulders in the roadway.

………

Sad news from the Inland Empire, where Cerritos cyclist John Clare was killed in a hiking accident.

The well-loved Triple Crown Cyclist — honoring riders who complete three century rides in a calendar year — was hiking in the San Bernardino National Forest when he lost his footing on an ice chute and fell 500 feet down a ravine.

A crowdfunding campaign to benefit his family has raised over $4,400, exceeding the $2,500 goal in just two days.

Thanks to Bill Clare (no relation) for the heads-up.

………

Sometimes it takes awhile to get to the punchline.

All week we’ve talking about the Aussie man who illegally drove on a bike path to scream abuse at the two bicyclists riding legally on the parallel roadway.

Today, we learned that the bike riders were off-duty cops.

Oops.

………

UC San Diego is celebrating the opening of a new bridge over I-5 linking the two sides of the campus, with sidewalks and bike lanes to cut commute times and improve safety for non-driving students and faculty.

Click here to RSVP.

Correction: I initially wrote San Diego State University when I meant UC San Diego. Thanks to Robert Leone for the tip, and Charles for the correction.

………

OC bike lawyer Ed Rubinstein offers a correction to yesterday’s item saying you have two years to file a lawsuit if you’re injured in a crash.

According to a comment from Rubinstein,

The comment about the deadline to file a civil suit in California after a crash is accurate, but dangerously incomplete. The deadline to file a personal injury or property loss against a private person or entity is correctly stated as 2 years. However in California if a public government entity is involved (I.e., state or local government and any public entity e.g. CALTRANS, CHP, a public school or university) you must first file a claim within only 6 months (California Tort Claims Act Gov’t Code 810-996.6). So if a cyclist is hit by a school bus, public transit bus or a police car, the deadline is 6 months to first file a claim. Also the 6 months claim requirement applies if the crash involves a dangerous road condition.

………

Local

The state’s Active Transportation Program has awarded a $35 million grant to provide safe routes to schools around eight Los Angeles schools, as well as improving routes for seniors in five LA neighborhoods.

Los Angeles expects to receive $46 million in funding to convert 2.8-miles of Manchester Ave and Broadway in South Los Angeles into Complete Streets to improve safety and revitalize a blighted area.

A bike rider is lucky to be alive, after firefighters rescued him as he clung to a branch with his bike in the rain-swollen LA River near Griffith Park yesterday.

KCRW asks if car-loving Angelenos will say yes to congestion pricing.

Streetsblog reports that two new Metro Bike docking stations have been installed in Koreatown.

Downey officials celebrate the city’s new docked bikeshare system, available through the Zagster app at the Apple App Store, as well as Google Play.

State

Orange County plans to reduce the hazards on Hazard Ave by installing a parking-protected bike lane on a four-mile stretch of the street connecting Garden Grove, Santa Ana and Westminster.

A pair of OC ebike shops are struggling to survive Trump’s tariffs imposed in his trade war with China.

The Red Cross is looking for volunteers to help prepare for its Operation Ride for the Red fundraiser in Ventura County this May. They’re also looking for participants.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole five custom-made motorized bicycles from a Bakersfield veteran’s garage after he died last week.

Caught on video. It takes a real schmuck to break in and steal a bicycle from a Stockton church-based co-op that repairs bicycles for the poor and gives free bikes to people in need.

Sacramento police busted a hit-and-run driver who ran down a 12-year old girl on a bicycle while driving with a suspended license; fortunately, the victim was not seriously injured.

National

The erstwhile Captain Kirk — or TJ Hooker, if you prefer — talks to Ad Age about his new Pedego commercial and love of ebikes. While he was riding one, no less.

The alleged drunk driver who killed two Honolulu pedestrians and a bike rider, and injured four other people, faces up to 60 years behind bars on three counts of vehicular manslaughter; he’s being held on $1 million bond.

Utah moves closer to adopting the Idaho Stop Law, which would allow bike riders to treat stop signs as yields, and proceed through red lights after coming to a full stop — but only when there’s no conflicting traffic.

A Denver man explains why he commutes by bikeshare, instead of driving. Or owning a bicycle.

Someone’s been breaking into Chicago bike shops, and making their getaway on the bikes they steal.

An Illinois man will serve 59 years for the drive-by shooting that killed a 27-year old bike rider, with no chance of parole.

Yes, you can go Viking Biking in a polar vortex, even when it’s -20° Minneapolis.

Life is really cheap in Maine, where a driver walks with just a $1,000 fine and three-month license suspension for killing a respected doctor as she was riding her bike. He played the universal Get Out of Jail Free card, claiming he couldn’t see her because the sun was in his eyes.

A new zero-waste Brooklyn grocery startup will deliver your order by bicycle, and pick up the reusable packaging when they deliver your next order.

Three Good Samaritans were honored for saving a man’s life when he suffered a heart attack during a New York state bike race.

Some people can’t see the highway for the cars. Somehow, motor vehicles are allowed in a Virginia wildlife sanctuary, but county officials think bicycles would have too great an impact on the environment.

International

Life is cheap in the UK, too. The allegedly distracted driver who killed the mother of bike advocate and former pro cyclist Chris Boardman got off with just 30 weeks behind bars and an 18-month ban on driving.

Police in a British town release a short video showing “anti-social cycling” by young bike riders.

Helsinki plans to improve safety for bicyclists and pedestrians by building a tunnel under a railway station for the equivalent of $26 million.

It will now cost Dutch bicyclists the equivalent of $110 if they’re caught using a cellphone while riding.

The Indian state of Goa rewards traffic vigilantes for informing police about scofflaw drivers. Can we do that here? Goa also has the best Indian food. Just saying.

Iraq, maybe. But you might not want to add North Korea to your bike bucket list yet.

A Kiwi columnist calls bicyclists the road users we all love to hate. But redeems herself by noting that every bike is one less car, and calling for improving safety for people on two wheels.

Competitive Cycling

Today’s racing news is all about the Amgen Tour of California.

Almost, anyway.

The full route for this year’s race was released yesterday; officials describe the 773-mile route as the longest and most challenging yet. But once again, women get the scraps, with just three stages totaling 177 miles.

Both the men’s and women’s races will finish with a lap around the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.

Meanwhile, you’ll get a chance to ride the race’s Mount Baldy stage when the annual L’Etape California by Le Tour de France before racers take the road.

In non-AToC news, the sexist prick clearly didn’t fall far from the tree. After Belgian pro Iljo Keisse walked with a small fine for rubbing his genitals against an Argentine waitress while posing for a photo, his father claims that she was partly responsible for being “very suggestive with her ass.” Note to clueless pricks: It doesn’t matter what the fuck a woman does — or what you think she does. No one has a right to touch another human being in a sexual manner without their consent. Period.

Finally…

At last, an e-Ducati you can take on MTB trails. Why pedal when you can use a sail?

And yes, he may have been texting while driving a car with expired plates, was already wanted for evading police, and drove off down a one-way street when a bike cop tried to pull him over.

But at least he said he was sorry as he drove off.

%d bloggers like this: