Morning Links: Beach bike path closed, slap on wrist in Glendale hit-and-run, and six years for drunken OC driver

Last Sunday’s storm wreaked havoc on the beachfront Marvin Braude bike path.

According to the LA County Department of Public Works, the winds drifted sand up to two feet deep on the path, resulting in its closure along Venice Beach, as well as from Ballona Creek south to Torrance Beach.

Work began on clearing the path on Tuesday, but it’s not expected to open until Friday. Just in time for what’s expected to be a warm and sunny weekend.

The Daily Breeze offers photos of riders trudging through the sand with their bikes.

………

This is why people continue to die on our streets.

A Glendale man gets just 360 days — less than a full year — after pleading no contest in the hit-and-run death of a four-year old girl.

A slap on the wrist for leaving a little girl to die in the street in front of her own family. If that.

And to top the outrage, the judge ordered his driver’s license suspended for just six months after his release.

Six whole months.

Never mind that he violated one of the most basic rules of driving, let alone human decency, by failing to stop at the scene of a collision and render aid as the law requires.

The law has to be changed. Now.

Let’s write our state representatives, and demand that any driver who leaves the scene of a collision should have his or her license automatically revoked. Not suspended.

And not for a limited period, but permanently.

Make them appear before a judge, after any sentence has been completed, to explain their actions and beg for the chance to apply for a new one.

………

There’s finally been justice in the case of fallen cyclist Matthew Liechty.

If you can call it that.

Michael Liechty reports that Antonio Magdaleno Jr. accepted a plea on Friday, nearly two years after he fled on three wheels from the DUI collision that killed Liechty’s brother while he was riding in a Newport Beach bike lane.

Magdaleno was originally charged with felony counts of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, fleeing the scene of a collision and hit-and-run with permanent and seriously injury; he had a BAC nearly two times the legal limit at the time of his arrest.

He received a six-year sentence after pleading to two felony counts, and was immediately taken into custody to begin serving his time behind bars. However, the DA handling the case reportedly said he can expect to serve just half that.

This is yet another case of California’s weak traffic laws allowing drivers back out on the streets after just a brief sentence, despite taking a human life with depraved indifference. And despite the best efforts of the Orange County DA’s office, which is one of the few in Southern California that actually takes traffic crimes seriously.

Liechty suggests that the law should be changed to mandate a charge of second degree murder for killing someone while driving under the influence.

I couldn’t agree more.

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Make your reservations for March 1st, when Metro is hosting their 2016 Active Transportation Summit.

2016 Active Transportation Summit Flyer

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Cyclelicious has created a real-time map of California bike collisions based on CHP dispatches. Which means that it includes reports that come into the CHP’s 911 dispatchers, but may not include those handled by local jurisdictions.

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Once again, a cyclist celebrates prematurely, thinking he’s won the world U-23 ‘cross title even though there’s still a lap to go.

And the father and brother of that Dutch rider who figuratively gave the cycling world the bird by motor doping are charged with literally stealing a few.

………

Local

LAist explains why LA is a great city for bikeshare.

Tomorrow KPCC will feature the results of a rush hour race from Union Station to the Santa Monica pier by bike, transit and motor vehicle, to determine if the car is still king on the streets of LA. Here’s betting it isn’t.

A writer for the Daily Bruin calls for more dedicated bus — and bike — lanes prior to a possible 2024 LA Olympics, despite blowback from groups like the Westwood Neighborhood Council.

Facebook is expanding into new creative space in Playa Vista, complete with bike racks. Seriously? A development that large should be required to install a bike hub as part of the permitting process to encourage workers to leave their cars at home.

An OpEd in the Santa Monica Mirror says give the new Expo Line a chance. And put lights on your bike if you’ll be riding home from the station after dark.

A former bank building will be demolished to widen Newport Blvd in Newport Beach and make room to extend the bike lanes two blocks south to 32nd street.

The Pomona Valley Bicycle Coalition invites you to Ride Around Pomona this Saturday, and the first Saturday of every month.

 

State

Cyclists and government officials met with officials from Miramar to discuss why the Marines are confiscating bikes from trespassing riders. The official version is they don’t want you to get shot or blown up, and that warning signs on the trails get torn down as soon as they go up.

Someone stole a $2,000, three-wheeled pedicab from a Vietnamese community group in San Diego, who consider it a priceless cultural artwork.

I want to be like her when I grow up. A San Francisco woman planted herself in front of a van after a road rage assault, refusing to move until the police showed up. But all the police did was ticket the driver for violating the three-foot passing law, and ignored the threats and assault from the car’s passenger, who bravely ran away before the cops came.

A Berkeley bicyclist is in critical condition after being hit and dragged by a car.

A city planning consultant presents a bold vision for Oakland, suggesting it tear down a freeway that represents a “great gash” through the city, and replace it with a grand boulevard for walkers, cyclists and cars. Maybe someday we’ll see that kind of thinking here.

 

National

A Denver driver faces up to 12 years in prison after pleading guilty for the DUI death of a cyclist; he was two and a half times the legal alcohol limit when he crossed the double yellow line to pass at least two cars on a blind curve, hitting the 38-year old father head-on.

A Cincinnati cyclist says the city needs to take its bike plan off the shelf and stop treating bicycle safety like a line item in the budget.

Unlike LA, where too many neighborhood groups fight bike lanes tooth and nail, a New York community board approves taking away a traffic lane to install a protected bike lane on Amsterdam Ave; Streetsblog explains why arguments against it don’t hold up.

Philadelphia gets its first Complete Streets Commissioner.

Sounds like fun. Washington DC plans a massive 17-mile ride around the city’s many monuments this May.

A former New Orleans police recruit is charged with second degree murder for firing his gun six times as he chased a bike thief down the street, eventually shooting him in the back of the head; his lawyer says he somehow felt threatened by the man who ran away after attempting to take his bike. Listen, I hate bike thieves as much as anyone, but seriously, don’t kill them.

 

International

Caught on video: A rear view camera catches a driver speeding up to deliberately run down a cyclist before fleeing the scene; despite clear video evidence, the authorities declined to prosecute, saying they can’t prove who was behind the wheel.

Scottish stunt cyclist Danny MacAskill takes to the snow.

Afghanistan’s women cycling federation has been nominated for the Nobel Peace prize. You know it sucks in a country when just having the courage to ride a bike is enough to win international recognition.

After his son was killed when he hit a pothole while riding a bike, a Mumbai man takes it upon himself to fill potholes on the city’s streets. And yes, it was probably a motorbike, but that doesn’t lessen what the father is doing to keep it from happening to anyone else.

A writer says Malta is dangerously trapped in the auto-centric ‘50s, instead of emulating other cities where bicycling is as natural as walking.

 

Finally…

Some of our bike lanes may be useless, but at least they’re more than six feet long. People find lots of things while riding their bikes; like a human skull, for instance.

And now you can pedal away the pounds with your very own sitNcycle for just $19.95, including shipping and handling.

No, really.

………

One last note.

When I announced the winner of our bike contest giveaway, I lamented that we only had one bike to give away, despite two very deserving people.

So I’m happy to report that a very generous anonymous donor has volunteered to buy a bicycle for the second place finisher, and that she’s in the process of picking out her new bike.

Which makes this a win/win in the best possible sense.

 

Morning Links: Pendleton registration begins, Monrovia talks bike plan, and more doping news, motor & otherwise

It’s official.

As we’ve discussed recently, bike riders will be required to register in advance and undergo a background check before being allowed to ride on Camp Pendleton as of March first.

You can read the base’s rules for cyclists and apply for an access permit here. Riders without permits can still cross the base, if less pleasantly, on the shoulders of I-5. Thanks to Cyclelicious for the permit link.

Meanwhile, the Battle of Miramar goes on, as a pair of hikers received a $525 ticket for trespassing on the Marine base; as we noted recently, several cyclists had their bikes seized for riding on the base.

………

Monrovia is hosting a public workshop to provide input on the city’s bicycle master plan this Wednesday.

CaKtToWUAAA3fZG

 

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Sad news from New Zealand, as 33-year old freeride mountain biking legend Kelly McGarry collapsed and died from a heart attack while riding.

You may know him from this vertigo-inducing singletrack ride, complete with a backflip over 72-foot canyon.

………

Italian bike maker Wilier Triestina says it will sue the Belgian ‘cross rider who was caught with a motor in her bike for damaging the company’s reputation. Uh, right.

Meanwhile, Red Kite Prayer’s Padraig says he’s not laughing at motor doping anymore, while Cycling Tips says it should bring an automatic lifetime ban.

And Spanish rider Roberto Heras was awarded the equivalent of over $790,000 when he sued the Spanish government after his suspension for doping was overturned due to testing irregularities.

………

Local

CiclaValley wants to show you how to get to March’s CicLAvia this Sunday. And he promises to get you home in time for that football game.

More anger in Santa Monica, where the city encourages everyone else to bike, walk or take transit, while giving its own employees free parking.

 

State

San Luis Obispo will become the latest city to crack down on traffic violations that affect bicyclists this Thursday.

If you had a bike stolen around Santa Cruz, you may be in luck, as police have recovered a cache of hot bikes.

 

National

Way to set a good example. A Super Bowl car commercial features actor Ryan Reynolds riding salmon on a bike.

City Lab provides the urban family’s guide to living carfree.

Good advice. A heart surgeon offers five life-saving signs of heart trouble every cyclist should know.

A Seattle radio host calls for letting the city’s troubled bikeshare program die a natural death.

Caught on video: A bike-riding Tennessee burglar gets away with two flat screen TVs and a laptop, even if it does take him three trips.

A New York radio station says the city’s delivery riders continue to take risks, despite laws attempting to rein them in.

A Florida man was killed in a slip and fall after stumbling across a street, a month before he was scheduled to go on trial for the DUI death of a cyclist.

 

International

The UK’s Evening Standard says the way to get over your broken resolutions is to get back on your bike.

Caught on camera:

  1. A British cyclist gets buzzed by a wrong way driver who turned directly into him and had to swerve out of the way.
  2. At least he avoided a collision, unlike one of his countrymen who captured his head-on collision with a driver who turned onto the wrong side of the road.
  3. And a another Brit took himself out after giving a driver an obscene gesture. Rule #1: Always maintain control over your own bike.

An Aussie rider offers 10 things motorists need to know about cyclists. Including that we’re people too.

Once again, someone has tried to sabotage an Australian riding route, this time by spreading gravel on the roadway across downhill sections and near corners.

 

Finally…

Forget motor doping; all the cool kids are using electromagnetic wheels. Seriously, if you’re carrying a knife, pipe and loaded gun on your bike, ride on the right side of the damn street, already.

And you know you’ve made the big time when Cheech turns your huge pink cowboy hat and upturned pointed boots riding attire into a meme.

 

Update: And the winner is…

It’s been a tough decision.

As you’ll recall, last month we asked people to write in to nominate someone they thought deserved a free bicycle from Beachbikes.net.

There were some great entries, from someone who was living carfree and could use a bike to make getting around easier, to the president of a school bike club who needed a new ride.

But in the end, two entries really stood out.

Since I struggled to make a choice, I reached out to a few trusted people to ask their advice. And in the end, their opinions coalesced around a single choice.

So with no further ado, here’s your winner.

My daughter needs a new bike to replace the 24 inch one she has outgrown. She’s a high school senior and almost six feet tall, but the 29er I was hoping for her to grow into has too large a frame even for her long legs. She really needs a 26 inch ladies cruiser bike. A brand new pretty one like those pictured would most certainly get her excited about riding again. We could all go for group rides as a family.

We’re a little short of money right now since last May, when my wife had to quit her job to care for me after I got beaten and stabbed in the head. If she were to win it would definitely help our family on our road to recovery and healing from the resulting stress this violent crime has had on us. I was actually stabbed right in front of our house and my wife and daughter came out after hearing my screams for help only to see me covered in blood. They called 911 for police and fire to come, took photos, and drove with me to Kaiser to get stitched up.

I’ll be contacting him to provide the information needed to claim the prize for his daughter. And best wishes for a full recovery.

However, I’m also going to post the entry from the second choice finisher, since I really wished I had another bike to give away. Maybe someone out there has a new or slightly used bike you don’t need anymore and would be willing to pass on to someone who could used it.

The person I’m nominating is a young attorney with a public attorney’s office. She is incredibly smart and capable and she turned down $200K+ salary offers to instead represent the poor and marginalized of Los Angeles.

She once expressed to me her theoretical desire to bike to work, but explained that she had never done so because (1) she doesn’t own a bicycle, and (2) she never learned how to ride and has always been terrified at the idea. So I offered to teach her. And let me tell you, as a 28-year-old biking novice confronting her lifelong fear, she has proven to be as determined and brave as any cyclist I’ve ever seen on the streets of Los Angeles.

I’ve lent her the crappiest old Schwinn beach cruiser you’ve ever seen, and where most people wouldn’t even touch such a rusty hunk of junk, she’s ridden every chance she gets. She’s a great person, she does amazing things for our community, and she sure could use a nice bike to get to work on.*

Unfortunately, I don’t know what size bike she needs. But if you’d like to help, I’ll put you in touch with the person who nominated her.

*I’ve rewritten this slightly to remove identifying information to protect her privacy.

Update: I’ve received a very generous offer from an anonymous donor to buy our second-place finisher a new bicycle. So this is literally a win/win. 

And a very sincere thanks to that anonymous donor for his generosity!

Morning Links: Improving bike safety on Bouquet Canyon, less liability on bike paths, and doping gets mechanical

Anyone who has ridden Bouquet Canyon through the Santa Clarita Valley — or driven it, for that matter — knows it’s a fun ride, but far from safe.

Especially at the speed too many drivers take it.

Following the death of a teenage motorist on the roadway last month, the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition has written an open letter to LA County Supervisor Michael Antonovich urging safety improvements on Bouquet Canyon Road. Especially in light of its inclusion as a Class III bike route in the new county bike plan.

Their suggestions include better signage warning drivers of the possible presence of bicyclists, reducing the speed limit, and installing a rideable shoulder the full length of the road.

You can read the full letter here.

Let’s hope Antonovich does, too. Then actually does something about it.

And no, it’s not just drivers who have lost their lives there.

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A California appeals court strengthens the concept of trail immunity, which holds that land owners and government bodies aren’t responsible for dangerous conditions on trails used for recreational purposes, including bike paths.

In Teresa Burgueno, et al. v. The Regents of the University of California, the 6th Court of Appeal ruled that bike paths that are used for both recreational and transportation riding are still considered recreational trails under the law.

Which means that if you’re injured due to dangerous condition on an off-road bike path, you can’t hold anyone legally responsible for your injuries. Even if they knew about it in advance, and failed to do anything about it.

And even if it’s used by people riding to school or work, in addition to people riding for fitness or enjoyment.

………

Caught on video: There is something seriously wrong with a driver who’d back up just to run a group of cyclists off the road; the incident occurred near Perth, Australia.

And yes, it’s been reported to the police.

………

After years of rumors, there’s finally been a confirmed case of motor doping.

A Dutch rider competing in the women’s Under 23 Cyclocross Worlds was forced to withdraw after race authorities found an electric motor hidden inside her bike.

Naturally, she claims it wasn’t her bike and she knew nothing about it.

The Wall Street Journal’s Jason Gay calls it perhaps the goofiest scandal ever, while Bike Hugger accuses the cycling world of a Motor Omertà.

………

Local

A bike rider in his 40s had to be rescued from rising waters in the LA River near Fourth Street due to Sunday’s rain. Which should serve as a reminder to avoid rivers and streams during and after a heavy rain, even if the path isn’t closed. And seriously, don’t go around the gate if it is.

You have just over a week to legally walk your bike across the Mariposa Street Bridge over the LA River; at the urging of horse riders, Burbank is scheduled to vote on the 9th to ban the mere possession of a bike on the bridge. Hopefully, they’ll listen to the Burbank Leader, which says they got it wrong.

Now here’s a good cause. The East Side Riders Bike Club has started a gofundme account to get a mobile bike shop. Their goal is to get kids hooked on bicycling, instead of something more dangerous.

 

State

A Highland man has his bike stolen after fleeing a man with a gun following an altercation.

There’s a special place in hell for someone who’d steal a bike from a legally blind former Marine in Eureka; prior to the theft, he was still able to ride using his peripheral vision.

 

National

A new study has shown what many of us already know. Riding harder doesn’t necessarily mean burning more calories or losing more weight, since metabolism tends to plateau at a certain level.

A Seattle writer places the blame for the failure of the city’s bikeshare system on a disconnected bike lane network, a lack of stations in popular places, and their bike helmet requirement.

Portland has now made protected lanes the default design for bike lanes; if city engineers recommend an unprotected lane, they have to be able to justify it.

Who knew sharrows were born in the Mile High City? No offense to my home state, but in most cases, they can keep them.

A Texas jury awards a cyclist injured by a distracted driver over $850,000, even without a finding of gross negligence. The victim and his wife hope this will inspire change in the state; remarkably, Texas still has not banned hand-held cell phone use while driving. Thanks to Steve Katz for the heads-up.

This is why you don’t chase after bike thieves. After an Ohio woman tries to use her car to chase down the man stealing her bike, he steals her car. And runs over her with it.

Any film or journalism school graduates want to move to PA? Bicycling Magazine is looking for a video producer.

Once again, a bicyclist rides to the rescue, as a Florida man rolls his truck and an anonymous man on a bike helps pull him and his brother to safety.

 

International

Evidently, drivers are no better in Canada than they are here. And it’s about time someone pointed out it’s often the people behind the wheel who act entitled, rather than those on two wheels.

A Brit Olympic legend says scandal-plagued international athletics should follow cycling’s anti-doping example. Like placing tiny motors in runners’ shoes and springs in the vaulting poles, perhaps?

A Philippine filmmaker worries that her new movie, which promotes a love of biking, fitness and nature, may put riders at risk by encouraging them to take to the country’s streets.

 

Finally…

Repeat after me: Don’t ride drunk with nearly two ounces on dope in your backpack. How about a rousing game of match the celebrity to the bike?

And that’s what I call a cargo bike. At least, China’s People’s Daily swears there’s a tricycle under there somewhere.

……..

Come back later today, when we’ll announce the winner of our first-ever bicycle giveaway, courtesy of Beachbikes.net.

 

Bike rider killed in South LA collision last week

Sometimes bad news never makes the news.

According to the South LA Sheriff’s Department, a bike rider was killed in a collision with a car last Tuesday, Jan. 26th, at the intersection of Ocean Gate Avenue and 132nd Street in unincorporated LA County. The victim was taken to a local hospital.

Unfortunately, no other details are available.

A street view shows a pair of quiet residential streets; matching that up with the photo in the sheriff’s post suggests that the driver was headed west on 132nd.

A comment to the post says the victim was a boy; she also says the driver had the right-of-way, but may have been speeding. However, there’s no way to verify the comment.

This is the 11th bicycling fatality in Southern California, and the third in Los Angeles County. That compares with just two in SoCal this time last year.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and all his family.

Thanks to GhostBikes for the heads-up.

Update: Mountain biker found dead after search in Angeles National Forest

An overnight ground and air search for a missing mountain biker led to bad news in the hills above Altadena.

According to KCBS-2, a Torrance man was found dead in the Angeles National Forrest around 10:30 Saturday morning, after going missing while riding on Friday.

The victim, whose name has been withheld pending notification of next of kin, was pronounced dead after his body was discovered on the Brown Mountain Truck Trail.

There were no apparent signs of trauma, which suggests he may have died of natural causes, or perhaps succumbed to exposure from being lost on the mountainside overnight.

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

Update: The Pasadena Star News reports that, contrary to the earlier report, the victim did show trauma consistent with a fall. His body was discovered a short distance from his bike, which had been spotted by a hiker around 10 am about three miles up the trail. 

He had gone for a ride Friday morning; a search was initiated at 9 pm Friday when his cellphone was traced to an SUV parked at the trailhead.

Update 2: SFV Media identifies the victim as 49-year old Torrance resident Evan Bruce Sisson. The site reports he was discovered partway down a cliff, with his bike at the base.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Evan Bruce Sisson and his loved ones.

Weekend Links: HB hit-and-run scum, a busy bike weekend and upcoming events, and Amgen ToC stages set

It takes a major piece of walking — or in this case, driving — human scum to run down a nine-year old boy riding his bike in Huntington Beach, stop just long enough to look at him, then drive off, leaving the kid lying in the street.

Fortunately, the boy is okay.

The driver, on the other hand, isn’t. There’s something seriously wrong with anyone who could do that to a little kid.

Thanks to Lois for the link.

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It’s long past time we caught up on coming events, with a number rolling this weekend. Hopefully before the rain starts.

Join a group ride to tonight’s Night on Broadway celebration in DTLA, departing from Eagle Rock at 3 pm.

Empact Long Beach hosts a number of bike safety workshops throughout the city in the coming weeks, starting today.

Walk Bike Glendale will kick off 2016 with a pizza party at Pizza Rev in Glendale this Sunday.

Pizza seems to be the theme of the day on Sunday, as LA Bike Trains is hosting the first of their monthly Biking ‘til Snack Time rides, with stops at a number of local pizza spots along the way.

Bike SGV is going pizza-free for Sunday’s ride celebrating the fourth anniversary of their monthly bike train. They note the ride will go on with light rain; heavy rain will mean a switch to a Bike Commuting Class, presumably indoors.

The Temple City council will hold a final vote on the proposed complete street redesign of Las Tunas Drive on February 11th.

Also on the 11th, the LA Planning Commission will consider amendments to the city’s recently passed Mobility Plan, including the possible removal of some bike lanes from the plan. Glad to see city staff has recommended keeping the proposed Westwood Blvd bike lanes in the plan over the objection of Councilmember Koretz and some homeowner’s groups.

CZ-2pFmUYAEDMu8The East Side Riders Bike Club is hosting the 7th Annual Ride 4 Love 2016 through LA’s Southside on February 13th.

The Van Nuys Neighborhood Council invites you to explore the area with the LACBC-led Tour de Van Nuys on February 20th, and stay after to help reimagine Van Nuys Blvd as a bike-friendly, green complete street.

Flying Pigeon is sponsoring a NELA Kidical Mass on February 21st.

Mark you calendar for the annual Malibu Gran Fondo March 6th and 7th.

Looking further ahead, this year’s Ride of Silence will roll on May 18th to honor fallen cyclists.

And the Eastside Bike Club is holding a Riff Raff Ride into Monrovia on June 26th as an unofficial adjunct to the 626 Golden Streets Ride through seven communities in the San Gabriel Valley. Most of which are more welcoming to riders than Monrovia seems to be.

………

The LACBC’s next Sunday Funday ride will be hosted by none other that Mr. CiclaValley himself, as he channels his inner Daniel LaRusso to show riders how to get to the March 6th CicLAvia in the northern reaches of the San Fernando Valley.

Meanwhile, CicLAvia continues to grow as it spreads out to Los Angeles, Lynwood, South Gate, Huntington Park and Southeast LA County on May 15th.

………

Been seeing lots of complaints from cyclists the past several days over this commercial for the new Audi plug-in hybrid, in which the owner of said car wins the admiring gaze of a bike-riding woman for driving like a total jackass.

Thanks to Alice Strong for the heads-up.

………

Route details are released for this year’s Amgen Tour of California, including a start and finish in San Diego’s Mission Bay to begin the race, followed stages from South Pasadena to Santa Clarita, and Thousand Oaks to Santa Barbara.

If France’s one-day Paris-Roubaix race isn’t tough enough, they’re adding an uphill, cobbled section for this year.

Pro cyclist Chad Haga describes what it’s like to fight an SUV with his face; Haga was the most seriously injured member of his Giant-Alpecin teammates, who were hit head-on by a wrong way driver while training in Spain. And voices his commitment to keep riding so she doesn’t get the final say on his racing career.

And in the cycling conspiracy theory that won’t die, Italy will hold yet another hearing looking into allegations that the great Marco Pantini was murdered rather than overdosing on coke.

………

Local

An OpEd in the Times says Metro’s bikeshare is set up to fail. Although I’d question the assumption that low-income residents are the most likely users of bikeshare, which hasn’t been the case in any other city I’m aware of. And while systems are planned for Long Beach and UCLA, they are not currently in place.

The city council has approved funding to install gates to keep cars off the LA River bike path, in hopes of stopping things like this from last year.

The Hollywood Reporter says allegations of preferential treatment for a former American Gladiators star accused of spousal rape is just the latest scandal involving the Malibu/Lost Hills sheriff’s station, including the death of cyclist Milt Olin, who was killed by a distracted deputy using his patrol car’s onboard computer.

Good news from Burbank, as police recovered the $5,300 customized bike that was stolen from a boy with cerebral palsy earlier this week; the bike was found on the side of a Silverlake street Wednesday night.

Speaking of CiclaValley, he say’s Glendale will be stepping up enforcement of traffic laws laws involving motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists today. Like the similar enforcement efforts in Santa Monica, make a point to obey all the laws today so whoever they ticket, it won’t be you.

 

State

Streetsblog’s Damien Newton responds to an OpEd from a Brown administration official, saying that doing better than Schwarzenegger when it comes to funding active transportation is not exactly the bar we set for the current governor.

Streetsblog also looks at the Death to Cyclists and Pedestrians Bill, which would slash fines for drivers who run red lights when making right turns. Okay, so maybe that’s not the official title of the bill. And the authors have the good taste to quote me in the story.

San Diego cyclists have to dodge motorists driving in the bike lane to avoid the crappy road conditions in Tecolote Canyon. One of the rare cases where road conditions are better in the bike lane than in the rest of the roadway.

Santa Barbara City College tries to encourage alternative transportation by providing a free breakfast for those who leave their cars at home.

After a successful Kickstarter campaign, a pair of Bay Area brothers are marketing a streamlined US-made bike bell designed for road bikes.

Sad news from NorCal, as a bike rider was found dead on the side of the road, the victim of an apparent hit-and-run. And a bicyclist was killed in Eureka after allegedly running a stop sign.

 

National

Seattle’s underfunded bikeshare system is on the brink, while bikeshare will come to my hometown before it does DTLA.

A New Mexico man starts a petition calling for tougher penalties for drivers who injure bicyclists.

A Boulder CO writer says drivers will get used to safety improvements if you give them enough time, rather than pulling out prematurely in response to complaints.

Brilliant police work in San Antonio, as police somehow conclude that a man riding a bicycle with two purses may have stolen them. Although riding with one purse might be a different matter.

Evidently, there are wiser heads in South Dakota, where a bill that would have required bike riders to pull over and stop so cars and trucks could pass has justifiably died in committee; it was opposed by the state transportation, public safety and tourism agencies, as well as cyclists. And anyone else with a modicum of sense.

A writer for the Wisconsin Bike Fed says slow down and save lives. And compares drivers to the Simpson’s Montgomery Burns careening towards people in a crosswalk, shouting, “Out of my way, I’m a motorist!”

An Ohio man faces up to eight years in prison for shooting a 72-year old man in the eye with a paintball gun from a passing car; the rider lost all the vision in his right eye as a result. One more reason to always ride with shatterproof glasses.

 

International

A Toronto paper calls this a pivotal time for cycling in the city.

London is the latest city where a marketing campaign from Orangetheory Fitness attempted to rip off ghost bikes by locking orange-painted bikes around town. But unlike other cities, complaints in London forced the bikes’ removal.

Caught on video: A London cyclist gets caught in a right hook squeeze play. As the story notes, the rider should have either pulled up to where the driver could see him, or held back behind the Porsche rather than riding next to it.

Fines for riding on the sidewalk in England and Wales have dropped 70% over the past five years.

It’s another round of road rage in the UK, as a London cabbie picked up a man riding his bike and threw him down onto the pavement, a bike rider was punched in the face by a driver who got out of his car to confront him, and an English cyclist pushed a pedestrian and threatened to punch him, apparently for no reason.

Owen Wilson is one of us, as he takes a spin around Paris. Note to the Daily Mail: There’s a big difference between a mini bike and a “quirky” foldie.

A German man has worn out six bicycles riding through the streets of Berlin calling for voting rights for non-European Union citizens.

Caught on video 2: A Singapore driver gets an earful — in English — when he tells a cyclist he’s riding on the wrong side of the road.

 

Finally…

Left in the street by a hit-and-run driver, but at least she got to meet the Bieb. Evidently, Brit bike cops only need a cup of tea to bounce back from the bumper of a distracted driver.

And it seems Specialized takes a whimsical, if painful looking, approach to a page not found page. Thanks to the BAC’s David Wolfberg for the heads-up.

………

Come back Monday, when we’ll announce the winner of our recent bike giveaway courtesy of Beachbikes.net.

And don’t forget — you’ve got just three more days to take advantage of the special BikinginLA offer on a new Invincible bike from Fortified.

 

All hands on deck! Planning Comm to consider anti-bike LA Mobility Plan amendments Feb. 11th

My apologies.

Due to health problems after attending an event last night, there won’t be a Morning Links today. I’ll try to pull it together and get the Weekend Links for you tomorrow.

However, one important item came through my inbox Thursday.

The Planning Commission meeting to consider amendments to LA’s recently adopted Mobility Plan 2035 will be held at City Hall on Thursday, Feb 11 at 8:30 am.

This is the one where opponents to the plan will try to remove key streets, such as Westwood Blvd and North Figueroa — as well as most of Councilmember Gil Cedillo’s CD1 — from the Mobility Plan.

Which means it’s an all-hands on deck meeting for anyone who cares about bicycling and safe streets in the City of Angels. Let alone Vision Zero.

Which should be just about everyone who reads this in LA.

 

Screen Shot 2016-01-29 at 1.23.43 AM

Morning Links: New app for navigating LA, advice on running for your local NC, and pointing the finger in Westwood

Figuring out how to get around the City of Angels just got a little easier.

And could help improve the way you get around in the future.

The new Go LA app, created by Xerox for iOS and Android devices, calculates the shortest, cheapest, and most sustainable way to get to your destination — whether on foot, by bike, motorcycle, taxi, car or transit, as well as ride-sharing options — while providing map routing and real time traffic and parking information.

And not just in terms of distance, but also time, cost, carbon footprint, health benefits and calories burned. Which means walking and biking will usually win on the last four counts.

The app also sends anonymous trip data back to LADOT to provide feedback on how people actually get around the city to provide data for future planning.

You can read more about the app on the Go LA press release.

………

Maybe that app will make it easier to use Metro, as the LA Times says ridership on public transportation is in a decade-long decline.

The paper cites other transportation alternatives, such as bicycling and ridesharing, as just two in a long list of factors leading to the drop. Although a more likely culprit is increased fares combined with cuts in service.

Charging more for worse service is rarely a good business model.

………

The LACBC offers details on the upcoming Neighborhood Council elections, and urges you to not only vote, but consider running for election to your local council.

As they point out, local councils are usually the first stops for any discussion for or against bike projects in the local community, and their opinions often carry a lot of weight with the area councilmember.

So your involvement really does matter. But you need to hurry, because the deadline to register as a candidate is approaching quickly in some areas.

………

Speaking of neighborhood councils, a writer for UCLA’s Daily Bruin says the Westwood Neighborhood Council gets the blame for blocking improvements to Westwood Village, including putting up roadblocks to the Westwood Blvd Great Streets project. Homeowners in the area are among the city’s most notorious NIMBYs, and should be held accountable for the decline in the once vibrant Village, where even dancing is banned at their insistence.

Meanwhile, the same writer says Councilmember Paul Koretz has been making opposing promises to both sides about the planned Westwood Blvd bike lanes, promising the neighborhood council and homeowner groups he’d kill the bike lanes, while telling the Sierra Club he supported moving forward with engineering studies. Thanks to Michael Cahn for the heads up.

………

BikeSGV reports that a proposed bike park is included in plans for the coming Puente Hills Landfill Park, along with bike and pedestrian access.

………

Local

Richard Risemberg accuses the city of malign neglect in its approach to 6th Street in the Mid-City area, where a planned road diet and bike lanes have been blocked as injuries and deaths mount.

CiclaValley looks at the numbers behind the proposed Griffith Park shuttle service, and says they don’t add up. Or even come close.

A Santa Monica advocacy group says the city talks a good game when it comes to promoting alternative transportation, but is hardly discouraging its own employees from driving when they receive free parking.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a $5,300 three-wheeled adaptive bike from a Burbank teenager with cerebral palsy.

Duarte develops a new Citywide Bicycle Master Plan and Safe Routes to Transit Master Plan to encourage more riding and promote bike and pedestrian safety. Evidently, the smaller the city, the more grandiose the title for their bike plan.

 

State

The head of the California State Transportation Agency — no, not Caltrans — says au contraire, the state is actually leading the nation in investments for bicycle and pedestrian facilities. Of course, as the nation’s most populous state, we should lead by default; the question is how do we stack up for spending as a percentage of population.

Some Cardiff residents are up in arms over a proposed bike and pedestrian trail that would run along a railroad track, claiming it would somehow cause irreparable harm to their community and the environment. Because evidently, bikes are so much more harmful than trains.

Menlo Park considers a bicycle boulevard connecting the east and west sides of the city.

San Francisco’s bikeshare program is expanding across the bay to Oakland, Berkeley and Emeryville.

The CHP is looking for the heartless coward who fled the scene after left-crossing a Sonoma Valley bike rider; the victim, who was on his honeymoon, is reportedly making a “miraculous” recovery, despite suffering a broken neck.

 

National

Seventy percent of American mayors support more bike lanes at the expense of traffic lanes or parking. The problem is getting their auto-centric constituents to agree.

A Portland cyclist wins a nearly half-million dollar judgment against a car wash after he slipped on the wet, soapy pavement, fracturing his hip, when a car wash customer pulled out and blocked the bike lane he was riding in.

An Idaho bike lawyer makes the case for the Idaho stop law that allows bicyclists to treat stop signs as yields and red lights like stop signs, arguing that it has helped the state maintain one of the nation’s lowest bicycling fatality rates as a percentage of population.

Not surprisingly, it’s going to be days before DC’s bikeways are cleared following last weekend’s blizzard. And things aren’t looking any better in New York.

 

International

Good news from Argentina, as Italian rider Adriano Malori has awakened from a medically induced coma after hitting a pothole at nearly 40 mph in the Tour de San Luis.

A Toronto paper rides along with bike-borne food delivery people through the city’s frozen streets.

It’s a daily double for the Guardian, as the paper test rides the sub-$700 dream bike of the British Labour Party leader, and looks at how bicycling unexpectedly became cool in Tel Aviv.

Caught on video: A British driver gets two and a half years for deliberately swerving head-on at a cyclist from the other side of the road in a successful attempt to frighten him. Thanks to Jeffrey for the link.

 

Finally…

Nothing like getting a punch in the face when you agree to buy a bike. Forget riding with your dog; try riding with a couple goats on your back.

And driving while very distracted: A pantsless Detroit man was killed in a car crash while watching porn on his smartphone.

 

Morning Links: LA chosen Vision Zero Focus City, another Glendale cyclist threatened, and a special bike offer

Los Angeles has been selected as one of ten Focus Cities to lead the effort to eliminate traffic fatalities.

According to the Vision Zero Network,

Cities across the nation face similar challenges in ensuring safe mobility for all. The new Vision Zero Focus Cities program creates a collaborative network of early-adopter Vision Zero cities to build a common vision, and to develop and share winning strategies toward eliminating traffic fatalities and severe injuries.

Recognizing the importance of a stepped-up, multi-departmental, collaborative approach to advance Vision Zero, participants in the Focus Cities program will include representatives of each city’s Mayor’s Office, Transportation Department, Police Department, and Public Health Department. In addition, a concurrent track for collaboration will bring together Vision Zero community advocates from each of the Focus Cities.

Let’s hope this means a real commitment to Vision Zero here in Los Angeles, rather than allowing councilmembers to put riders at risk by arbitrarily carving streets out of the Mobility plan.

If Vision Zero is to work, it has to be the policy for all of LA, in every neighborhood and on every street.

Period.

………

Just days after video surfaced showing cyclists assaulted by a driver on a Glendale street, a Glendale teenager was cited for apparently threatening a bicyclist with a 10-inch knife from a passing van, after his mother had followed the rider honking her horn at him.

Why that didn’t merit the arrest of both the boy and his mother is beyond me.

Glendale police clearly need to do something to tame their streets before someone gets hurt. Or worse.

Meanwhile, LAist says the video shows that neither of the two Glendale cyclists who were assaulted by that brake-checking driver were remotely close to hitting the car. And they urge everyone to drive safely.

………

Maybe you’ve noticed.

The past few months, my curiosity has been piqued by a new bicycle from Fortified Bicycle, which promises to be virtually theft proof and indestructible, and built to survive the rough roads of an urban environment.

I’ve even linked to their Kickstarter a few times, both here and on my Twitter account.

Evidently, they noticed, because they contacted me yesterday with a special offer for the readers of BikinginLA.

I’ll let them explain.

Fortified 1THE ULTIMATE URBAN BIKE

Invincible is a sleek, bulletproof urban bike that is literally guaranteed against theft. Plus, Fortified Bicycle (the creators behind this project) have offered a special deal.

What makes Invincible a truly compelling urban bike? For one, every single component was selected for standing up to a rough urban environment. Parts that are commonly vulnerable to theft—lights, wheels, seat, handlebars—are secured with bolts that feature a proprietary drive geometry that opportunistic bike thieves will not be able to operate. But the biggest innovation here is their new cycle registration and theft protection service, Fortified Protect. Not only will Fortified send you a new bike if yours is stolen, they’ll also try and hunt down your stolen bike on third party seller marketplaces like eBay and Craigslist. That’s just cray.

The folks from Fortified are cutting Everyday Messenger backers a special deal. If you pre-order Invincible on their current Kickstarter project, they’ll add a free Invincible Rear Bike Rack ($45 value) to your rewards.

How to redeem this offer:

  1. Back Invincible on Kickstarter. Choose a reward level of at least $399 or more.
  2. Send a direct message on Kickstarter to Fortified Bicycle (the Invincible creators). Include the code “BIKINGINLALOVE” in that message. They’ll take care of things from there.

Fortified 2

Sounds like a good offer to me. But hurry if you’re interested, because there’s just six days to go before their Kickstarter ends.

And no, just to be clear, I don’t have any relationship with the makers of this bike, financial or otherwise.

………

Women, here’s your chance to try out for a pro cycling team. Without ever having to get on a bike.

……..

Local

The LA Times says the plan to relieve traffic congestion in Griffith Park is a good idea, but doesn’t go far enough; the paper calls for improved transit and protected bike lanes leading to the park.

KCET talks with Flying Pigeon owner, Bike Oven founder and all-around good guy Josef Bray-Ali.

Dallas Mavericks teammates JaVale McGee and J.A. Barea are one, make that two of us, as they take a tandem ride along the beachfront bike path near the Santa Monica pier.

LA’s own Phil Gaimon says barring small Pro Continental cycling teams from WorldTour races might reduce injuries, but it would unfairly limit opportunities for riders.

 

State

Police have a person of interest in custody, but not yet charged, in the murder of bike rider Sidney Siemensma on an Irvine bike path earlier this month; they say this was not a random attack.

Newport Beach says not so fast about that legal settlement we mentioned yesterday requiring them to work towards fixing a deadly intersection on PCH.

A senior planner for Alta Planning + Design describes their efforts in orchestrating a pedestrian and bicycle safety campaign. Clearly, they still have some work to do.

Local bike shop owners and their supporters will ride to protest San Diego’s DecoBike bikeshare program, arguing that it’s hurting their bottom line.

Apparently, bicyclists are being banned from a Santa Rosa pathway because of a typo; Portland bike riders have a similar problem, but for a different reason.

St. Helena proposes removing on-street parking in favor of a bike lane, while the owner of a local retirement community says that’s a bad idea, preferring parked cars to moving bikes.

Platinum-level bike friendly city Davis is aiming to be the first American city to reach Diamond status. After that, the next level would be Unobtainium.

Evidently, if you want to steal a bike, feel free to do it in front of UC Davis students, but don’t try to make your getaway in front of the sheriff.

 

National

Fifty percent of teens admit crossing a street while distracted. And the other half probably lied about it.

A Portland workshop is helping women overcome their fear of bicycling by teaching them how to fall. Which follows this sage advice from a few decades back.

A 77-year old Dallas truck driver is charged with driving under the influence after hitting a nine-year old child riding his bike around a mobile home park; fortunately, the boy is now in stable condition.

A bike riding Missouri bank robber gets nearly five years after stealing $14,000 to support his heroin addiction. He was caught trying to walk away after ditching the bike; if he’d kept riding, he might still be a free man, albeit with a monkey on his back.

A bill in the Tennessee legislature to encourage teaching students the right way to wear a bike helmet somehow became a bill to ban school districts from collecting teachers dues; thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

A fascinating set of graphs paint a picture of usage for New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare system. Including the deeper the snow depth, the less bikes are rented.

Speaking of which, a New York bike messenger discusses what he learned riding during the recent blizzard.

Once again authorities choose safety for motorists over safety for cyclists on a popular riding route by installing rumble strips, this time in Florida.

 

International

A Montreal memorial uses white shoes as the equivalent of a ghost bike for a fallen pedestrian.

Mother Jones says the jury is still out on that British study saying wearing a bike helmet makes you take more chances.

Scot authorities vow to get tough on illegal dumping, aka fly tipping, after a dog is maimed by a rusting bike left along a busy pathway. The more I do this, the more I learn English, as in the in the county, as opposed to what passes for it here.

Self-governing British dependency Isle of Man proposes legislation protecting cyclists, including a safe passing law and some form of presumed liability.

A Scottish newspaper looks at the man they credit with inventing the bicycle. Actually, it’s a little more complicated than that.

Spanish cyclist Alberto Gallego gets suspended for steroid use, just three days after joining his new team.

A Kiwi mountain biker plans to compete in a seven day, 310 mile race, a year after a reaction to a bee sting left him legally blind.

 

Finally…

Yes, the correct place to put a sign promoting a meeting to discuss cycle tracks is directly in the bike lane. Probably not the best idea to get loaded and throw a kid’s bike through the rear window of a cop car. Although yelling “boom” is a nice touch.

And most of us would have a hard enough time keeping our bike upright while working a Rubic’s cube, let alone solving 111 of them in two hours.

 

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