Tag Archive for bicycling injuries

Morning Links: Court sticks LA and Caltrans for $9.1 million in PCH crash, and Brown signs e-scooter helmet bill

In the latest massive court case against the City of Los Angeles, a jury awarded $9.1 million to a man injured while riding his bike on PCH.

The Los Angeles Times reports Robert Jeffrey Watts suffered a severe brain injury four year ago, when he swerved his bike to go around rocks and debris on PCH in Pacific Palisades, and was struck by the wing mirror of a passing truck.

Watts came across a pile of sand and rocks on the pavement, and steered into the travel lane to avoid the debris. He was struck by a truck’s side mirror and lost control of his bicycle, resulting in a crash that left him with a “significant amount of brain damage,” according to a complaint filed in 2015 in Los Angeles County Superior Court.

Watts was an experienced bicyclist who rode to his office in Culver City for years to keep fit, said his attorney, Boris Treyzon. Watts, who ran a successful freelance camera company, was left unable to work.

The jury split blame for the case, finding Caltrans 40% liable for the crash, with Los Angeles responsible for the rest.

Caltrans, which owns the highway, had hired Los Angeles to sweep the pavement at least once a month and keep it free of debris, but jury testimony and records left it unclear how often the work was performed, Treyzon said.

During the trial, he said, two city street sweepers testified that at the Tramonto slide, “they would simply swing around … and ignore it,” rather than remove the sand, gravel and rocks from the roadway.

No surprise there to anyone who has watched LA City street sweepers in action. Or had to ride through the debris they left behind.

The size of these awards keep climbing. And those payments come out of your taxes.

Money that would be much better spent to fund quality bike infrastructure and safer streets to keep bike riders and pedestrians from getting injured.

Instead of paying out massive legal judgements after they do.

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Go ahead and scoot without a skid lid.

To the surprise of some — okay, me — Governor Brown signed AB 2989, allowing adult users of e-scooters to ride without a helmet.

In addition, the law allows scooters on streets with speed limits up to 35 mph; current law limits scooters to streets with speed limits up to 25 mph unless they have bike lanes.

No word on when the law takes effect.

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CiclaValley wants to know whether Decker Canyon or Westlake Blvd offers the scarier descent.

Although Phil Gaiman might vote for Tuna Canyon.

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Cheetahs don’t pedal.

Just saying.

 

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Local

Ride Metro Bike bikeshare free tomorrow for World Car Free Day.

A writer for City Watch takes a miserable walk down Fairfax Blvd, followed by a harrowing bike ride. And says Metro could fund trees, sidewalk improvements and bike lanes on Fairfax, as well as on Wilshire Blvd and all the major streets in the area that connect to Wilshire, for less than $50 million. Let’s hope someone is listening to him.

Downtowners weigh in on plans to remake LA’s Civic Center, calling for protected bike lanes and trails with bike and scooter parking.

Bicycling profiles the founder of LA-based women’s bikewear brand Machines for Freedom.

The third annual Gran Fondo Santa Clarita rolls next Saturday.

 

State

The Tahoe-Pyramid Trail is nearing completion, following the Truckee River 116 miles from the north shore of Lake Tahoe to Nevada’s Pyramid Lake.

 

National

A writer for Forbes explains in detail why you have a greater right to ride a bicycle than to drive a car, and proposes a Micromobility Bill of Rights giving you the same entitlement on smaller devices like e-scooters.

Bicycling looks at the “newest and coolest gear” from this year’s Interbike show.

Your next bike could be made of Super Magnesium.

No bias here. A Colorado columnist complains about “Bicyclist Entitlement Syndrome,” saying courteous bike riders are so rare you never see them. And the rest park their bikes on handicap ramps and run over kittens.

Omaha police agree to keep patrolling the city’s paved trails in response to bike riders’ concerns about “wrongdoers.”

A Chicago city alderman has proposed requiring bike riders to dismount and walk their bikes on the popular downtown Riverwalk, saying it’s a disaster waiting to happen.

The administrators of the bike-hating Northern Kentucky Facebook group we linked to earlier this week have turned it into a closed group after it got public attention, and changed the name to “Share the Road;” local bicyclists are worried it could incite violence against bike riders.

Police in Knoxville TN are the latest department to use an ultrasonic radar device to enforce the three-foot passing law. The LAPD, not so much.

A pair of Cleveland bike riders were brutally attacked and robbed in separate early morning attacks.

New York is closing a pair of key bike lanes, apparently for security reasons, in preparation for next week’s United Nations General Assembly meeting — but leaving open a car tunnel that runs directly underneath.

A DC Twitter bot instantly uncovers the unpaid traffic tickets for any license plate, including one driver with 84 tickets totaling $10,700. Can we get that here in LA? Pretty please?

 

International

The co-founder of Zipcar warns the changes autonomous vehicles will bring could be paradise, or it could be hell.

Bike Radar offers tips on how to take inexperienced bike riders out for their first road ride.

Now that it’s legal north of the border, Canada’s military says don’t drive for 24 hours after you toke.

The Guardian looks at the colorful reinvention of city intersections.

Now that’s more like it. After a driver in the UK tweets that she should have run over a bike rider, police tell her to return her license because she’s clearly not fit to have one.

A British ebike maker says restricting ebikes to 15.5 mph in the UK and European Union is too slow for riders to be safe in traffic.

A Brit bike rider blames Strava for leading thieves to his home, where they stole five bikes worth nearly $16,000.

Heartbreaking news from the Netherlands, where four children were killed when the daycare cargo bike they were riding in was hit by a train.

VeloNews takes a tour of Italian bicycle factories.

 

Competitive Cycling

Forty-three-year old Amber Neben continues to defy the calendar as she prepares to compete for her third road world championship.

But maybe you’d rather watch bike racers about 40 years younger.

 

Finally…

Forget bike polo, it’s Cycleball season. Now you can own your very own British bike chain; no, not that kind.

And maybe it’s just me, but I don’t think those are bike racks.

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Thanks David D, and everyone who has contributed this week, for their generous donations to help support this site. 

One final reminder, if everyone who visits this site today donated just $10, it would be more than enough to keep it going for a full year.

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Join the Militant Angeleno and BikinginLA for the first-ever Militant Angeleno’s Epic CicLAvia Tour at the Celebrate LA! LA Phil 100 CicLAvia on September 30th!

Just RSVP to [email protected] We want to guarantee a relatively small group to make sure we can keep the group together, and everyone can hear.

Morning Links: Support injured bike rider with new T-shirt design, and new bill could end CA e-scooter helmet law

Here’s your chance to look good by helping out an injured rider.

Several months ago, a man who goes by the name of Hery reached out to me for help after he was injured by the driver of a car.

I gave him what advice I could; unfortunately, he’s still struggling, as the message below indicates.

Eight months ago while riding my bike to work I was hit by car. I woke up with wiring in my mouth and have been on disability ever since. Recently I was informed my Medi-Cal won’t be covering some medical expenses, and over these last 8 months I’ve also accumulated a lot of debt just trying to get by. So I’ve decided to design T-shirts to raise money for bills and other expenses.

This is what Hery’s bike looked like after he was injured in the crash

It’s a great looking design, and a good cause, helping someone get back on his feet after he was injured in a crash.

And it’s available on anything from T-shirts and hoodies, to stickers and coffee mugs.

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A new bill passed by the state senate on Thursday would remove the ridiculous helmet requirement for dockless e-scooters — and the nearly $200 fines too many users have had to pay for breaking the law.

AB 2989 would also cap scooter speeds at their current 15 mph, while allowing cities to permit their use on more types of streets. Powered scooters are currently restricted to streets with bike lanes or speed limits of 25 mph or less.

The bill needs to return to the assembly before it goes to Governor Brown, where experience tells us it will face an uncertain fate.

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Todd Munson does what I’ve often threatened to do, recording two minutes of scofflaw drivers running the stop sign near his home.

I could do the same thing at either of the intersections closest to our apartment, with the same results.

Yet so many drivers seem to get apoplectic they see bike and scooter riders doing the same things they do every day.

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Los Angeles bike riders have to fight to get a bike corral. Riders in the the Netherlands get this, instead.

Thanks to Byron Smith for the heads-up.

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There was a time when Bike the Vote was more than a slogan, as an academic journal site remembers when bike riders were a political block courted by the GOP. And helped deliver the vote to William McKinley in 1896.

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Evidently, it’s not just Los Angeles.

Lincoln, Nebraska residents and bike riders support a lane reduction on major street, while a business association predicts a traffic apocalypse and calls it the first salvo in the war on cars.

In Jacksonville FL, the city wants to remove lanes from a street to improve safety, but local residents insist they like it just the way it is.

And an Edmonton, Canada letter writer says a lane reduction and two-way cycle tracks don’t make any sense, and he can’t understand why bike riders wouldn’t prefer a quieter, tree-lined street. The answer is they probably would, if it went the same places, with no stops and with signalized intersections at major streets, because bike riders need to get where they’re going just like drivers do.

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Local

LA Magazine previews the My Figueroa Complete Streets project, which will be officially unveiled this Thursday.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton writes that a wealthy neighborhood gets street repairs on dangerous Griffith Park Blvd where a rider was injured, while a less well off neighborhood gets signs and a recommendation from the city attorney to remove the bike lanes instead of fixing them.

Curb extensions are installed on Pico Blvd to improve safety at Hauser and Curson. Although it clearly could have been the first step to installing protected bike lanes, instead.

 

State

An Oceanside bike rider is lucky to be alive after surviving a crash with a commuter train that left him with minor injuries. Let that be yet another reminder to never try to go around crossing gates, even if it appears to be safe at the time.

The San Diego Union-Tribune asks if the city is ready to eliminate parking requirements for downtown housing.

Members of Rich City Rides rode to Oakland’s city hall to protest the arrest of founder Najari Smith for Biking While Black.

Sad news from Austria, where beloved Oakland triathlete Alistair Eeckman was killed in a crash with a bus while on a training ride, just one day after finishing sixth in the Powerman Austria; he was just 23. Thanks to Matt Stewart for the news.

 

National

Streetsblog says America’s car culture is literally shortening your life.

Your next Uber may not have a driver — or four wheels. The ride-hailing company’s new CEO sees a shift to ebikes and scooters for short trips.

A Colorado couple literally wrote the book on cycling the Great Divide, with all proceeds going to the Adventure Cycling Association.

Sioux City, Iowa, has made progress when it comes to bicycling, but still has a long way to go.

Tour de France laterne rouge Lawson Craddock returns home to a hero’s welcome at Houston’s Alkek Velodrome, after raising what could be as much as $400,000 to rebuild it following last year’s Hurricane Harvey. And announces it will be the site of USA Cycling’s new Olympic development program.

A Texarkana TX newspaper gets it, explaining that the city’s new sharrows don’t actually change anything, since bicyclists already have a legal right to ride in the traffic lane, but simply remind drivers of that fact.

Around a thousand people turned out for a bike ride to honor a Milwaukee bicycling icon who founded a chain of bike shops and created bike paths across the US.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Minnesota man rides his age to celebrate his 90th birthday, breaking it up into six 15 mile rides.

A Tennessee family has developed a device to fit on the handlebar ends on kids bikes, that will hopefully prevent puncture injuries that aren’t as rare as they seem. Something like that should be required for every kid’s bike sold; every year, several children are seriously injured or killed by worn bike parts.

Streetsblog says a single double-parked truck can undermine everything the New York Department of Transportation does to keep streets safe for cyclists and pedestrians, because it all falls apart without enforcement.

A DC bike advocate says our streets don’t have to make us unhappy.

A Florida singletrack rider rescued a baby raccoon by putting him in his backpack, and riding him to safety before the coyotes could get him. It may be cute, but most experts recommend against trying to rescue seemingly abandoned animals; chances are, the mother is hiding somewhere nearby.

 

International

Ottawa bike riders are taking to social media to try to track down their stolen bicycles.

Now that’s a close call. An Ottawa bike rider decides he needs to buy some lights after a driver makes a left turn directly in front of him in the dim twilight. Which he should have had long before this ever happened.

Speaking of close calls, a British bike rider was nearly sideswiped by a trailer pulled by a van in a near-miss caught on bike cam.

Pamplona has running with the bulls; Birmingham, England has wheelie-popping teens riding with the buses.

Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas says bike helmets should be made mandatory in the UK, adding “I’ve put on a helmet more times than I’ve buckled a seatbelt.” Then tries to walk it back the next day.

A New Zealand Op-Ed says there’s no need for a war between bicyclists and motorists; just slow traffic and build some decent infrastructure.

 

Competitive Cycling

A reminder of the dangers of amateur racing, as 30 riders went down in a mass crash in a Wisconsin race, sending four people to the  hospital, and leaving a number of others with minor injuries.

Three years ago, Staci Nash was a two-time NCAA Division II track champ — the running kind, not cycling. Today, she’s a two-time national mountain biking champ.

Ritchie Porte says I beg your pardon, I never promised you I was going for the general classification in the Vuelta.

Speaking of the Vuelta, Deadspin calls it the strangest, hardest stage race of the cycling season, and predicts this year’s race will kick ass. Meanwhile, Cycling News says it’s the last chance for ten riders.

Great long read from Peter Flax, who recounts the strange happenings 70 years ago as two legendary racers faced off in the 1948 world championships, which neither one won.

 

Finally…

Sometimes riding down a freeway in rush hour traffic calls for nothing more than a g-string. Yes, you can still take a Sunday drive — as long as it’s on a bike.

And when you hear hoofbeats, stop and say hi.

 

Morning Links: Safe bicyclist injured anyway, a big thumbs up for a safe pass, and our absurd surrender to cars

One quick note before we get started.

Yesterday, a friend and long-time supporter of this site texted me to say she was in the back of an ambulance on the way to the emergency room after getting hit by a driver.

Fortunately, she wasn’t seriously injured, and was sent home with a large hematoma and assorted scrapes and bruises.

She’s one of the safest and most conservative bike riders I know, and someone who always rides with a helmet and hi-viz. Yesterday the helmet came in handy; the hi-viz, apparently not so much.

I don’t have any details yet.

But this is just one more reminder about the dangers of LA streets. And that it’s already long past time to do something about it.

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Undoubtedly the cutest thing you’ll see today, as a four-year old Brit bike rider gives a truck driver a big thumbs up for a safe pass.

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Local

LA’s traffic safety deniers say don’t bike the vote.

It will be a busy day on PCH Saturday, when 2,500 bicyclists come through the ‘Bu on the final day of the AIDS/LifeCycle Ride; this year’s ride raised a record $16.6 million for HIV programs.

 

State

An Orange County writer has been commissioned to write a history of Richard Long and the founding of GT Bicycles.

Bike SD calls on San Diego to save the planned Hancock Street bike lane, as local businesses demand its removal from the community plan in favor of more parking.

San Bernardino’s bus system talks with a man who rejuvenated his life when he got back on his bike in his 40s, and on the bus.

A Santa Cruz work skills program that teaches high school students to work as bike mechanics for class credit is slowly spreading across the US, with programs at schools in Colorado and Minnesota, and throughout California.

Someone should tell the UC Davis school newspaper there’s absolutely nothing funny about kicking people off their bikes. No, seriously.

Sad news from NorCal, where a 70-year old man died of an apparent heart attack while participating in a gravel race at Lake Davis.

 

National

Treehugger says people who walk, bike or ride scooters aren’t fighting over a cookie, as London’s former cycling chief said, we’re fighting over crumbs.

Another great piece from Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss, who says our surrender to the automobile is absurd and deadly, yet people still prefer a handful of cars to hordes on bikes coming to spend money at local businesses. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

Strong Towns looks at how bike lanes benefit businesses, saying that in city after city, business owners see more foot traffic and higher sales when streets are redesigned to be more bike and walk friendly.

Once again, a cross-country cyclist has his bike and all his gear stolen, this time in Eugene OR. And once again, the local community pitches in to help out.

Colorado tells bicyclists and pedestrians that safety starts with all of us. On the other hand, it usually ends on the bumper of a car.

Come to the US for a summer work program, go home in a box thanks to a Texas drunk driver who plowed into a group of five bike riders, injuring one rider and killing a 23-year old man from Columbia who had only been in this country for three weeks. Somehow, I suspect the tears on the cheek of the driver in her booking photo are nothing compared to those of the victim’s family. But maybe that’s just me.

A St. Paul MN man has pled guilty to vehicular homicide for fleeing the scene after killing a bicyclist; he claimed he ran a red light to get away from a road rage altercation and hit something, but didn’t stop to see who or what he hit. His mother is also charged with aiding him in the coverup.

Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula is called a secret mountain biking mecca.

An Ohio family is understandably outraged that no charges will be filed in the death of a 12-year old boy, even though the driver admitted he was reaching for a phone just before the crash; police incorrectly blamed the victim for riding his bike in the traffic lane, rather than as close to the edge as possible.

A Boston bus and bike lane has been returned to its previous life as a parking lane, despite a successful one-month pilot project.

New York bicyclists will form a human-protected bike lane tomorrow to demand safer streets where a man was killed while riding home from work last year. Maybe that’s what we need to do here to finally get a little attention.

 

International

Cycling Weekly looks to bespoke bike builders to determine the trends in women’s bikes, beyond the mass market bike makers’ usual approach of shrink it and pink it.

A Canadian news site talks with the Toronto mountain biker who cut up his arms crashing into barbed wire that had been strung at chest height across a popular trail. Stunts like this aren’t pranks, they’re acts of terror — deliberate attempts to injure or kill people on bicycles. And the jerks responsible should be charged accordingly.

A Toronto man gets a $1,200 bikeshare bill despite insisting he returned the bike, then proving it.

Ikea’s Sladda bike has been done in by a belt, as the company permanently recalls all of the build-it-yourself bike-in-a-boxes.

London tells “irresponsible” cyclists to slow down and be considerate.

Two armed, masked men on bikes stole a $25,000 TV camera from an Australian news crew reporting from the UK.

A British university professor says ebikes could be core to sustainable mobility — if the government stops marginalizing bikes in favor of low-emission motor vehicles.

An Indian planning professor says he wishes he could ride to work, if only the country would invest in safe streets and bikeways.

Mumbai considers plans to build dedicated bike paths near the city’s transit stations.

 

Competitive Cycling

Third place finisher — and last year’s winner — Alison Tetrick offers a first hand view of this year’s 200-mile Dirty Kanza gravel race.

Forget Peter Sagan’s legs, check out his core workout.

Cycling Weekly offers tips on how to nail your first bike race, saying “racing is a landmark moment in the life of any competitive-minded rider.” Funny, I took up bicycling because I was too competitive, and it offered me a chance to ride just for the sheer joy of it.

Joe Lindsey offers up five ways to liven up the Tour de France. My favorite is his suggestion to make the riders shotgun a beer before a mass start.

 

Finally…

Probably not the best idea to sue the government over injuries caused by a pothole you didn’t even hit. Seriously, slow down, watch for cars and don’t run into light poles.

And when you get hit by cars twice in nine days, it’s either incredibly bad luck, or bad streets and crappy drivers.

Or maybe all of the above.

 

Morning Links: Red light-running bike rider severely injured in DTLA crash, and taking Montclair to task

This is why you always stop for red lights.

And observe the right-of-way.

According to the LAPD’s Central Traffic Division, a bike rider suffered what was described as severe injuries in a collision at Washington and Grand in DTLA yesterday, and was hospitalized in critical condition.

Traffic investigators report that multiple witnesses said the victim ran the red light before being struck.

Personally, I couldn’t care less if you roll a stop sign or two when there’s no one else around. Just be sure to always observe the right-of-way, and stop if there’s conflicting traffic.

But seriously, always stop for red lights — especially if there is cross traffic of any kind.

And never forget that even if there doesn’t appear to be any traffic on the street you’re crossing, that doesn’t mean a speeding driver won’t come out of view and try to make it through the intersection before the light changes.

Which happens far too often. And too often with tragic results.

So just stop and wait a minute or two. Push the beg button if the light doesn’t change. And hesitate for moment before crossing to make sure everyone else stops, as well.

Because it beats the hell out of waking up in the ICU.

Or not waking up at all.

I hope you’ll join me in offering a prayer or best wishes for the victim, and hope for a full and fast recovery.

Photo from LAPD Central Traffic Division.

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He gets it.

Writing for Streetsblog, Mehmet Berker does a great job of slicing and dicing the new Montclair distracted walking ordinance that bans the use of electronic devices, including earpieces, while crossing the street.

Never mind that most drivers have their windows up and sound systems blaring. If they’re not too busy texting.

More to the point, the Montclair ordinance is at best a well-intentioned but misguided attempt at making safer streets – legislated by city leaders who suffer from extreme windshield bias. It’s also one more example of our car-centric society’s tendency to classify city streets as spaces solely for automobiles and place the responsibility for safety on anyone who is not driving.

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Local

Pasadena plans to extend its biking and walking networks — although the latter is usually known as sidewalks — as well as increasing the density of the Metro Bike bikeshare to 800 bikes at three docks per square mile, to help met climate goals.

The latest SGV Connect podcast discusses the proposed Orange Grove Blvd lane reconfiguration, as well as attempts to halt the popular Rose Bowl rides.

La Verne is moving forward with development of a new Active Transportation Plan.

Santa Monica adopts an “emergency” law allowing it to impound shared mobility devices, aka Bird scooters and dockless bikeshare bikes, that pose a hazard to others when left on the sidewalk or in the street.

The LACBC is holding their March RideSELA community bike ride this Sunday through the Willowbrook and Florence-Firestone neighborhoods. Check to make sure it’s still on with this weekend’s predicted rain, however.

 

State

Encinitas commissioners unanimously support plans to convert a deadly section of Highway 101 to a complete street through the Leucadia neighborhood, including bike lanes and six roundabouts. This is the same stretch of roadway where Los Angeles randonneur Jim Swarzman was killed by a drunk hit-and-run driver in 2011; his killer was eventually sentenced to just two years behind bars.

A Santa Barbara bike rider gets caught for running a stop sign in the city’s latest crackdown, as a dangerous underpass prepares for a road diet.

San Francisco plans to replace its fleet of firetrucks with smaller trucks that can fit on narrower streets. Although the purpose of the change is not to reduce conflicts with bike advocates, as the headline suggests, but to save lives.

Bike East Bay reports there are a number of bike jobs available in the Bay Area, from bike shops and bikeshare to advocacy groups.

A trio of Oakland letter writers say there are actually road diets in the city that are safe and successful.

Officials will now spend $100,000 to study backing out of a promised bike lane across the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, and converting it to car use instead. Which should tell you how bicyclists rank in their priorities, when drivers get 100% of the bridge, and everyone else gets zip.

 

National

US speed skater Mia Manganello credits bicycling with helping her win the first American women’s medal in the sport in 16 years.

A new study suggests the obsession cities have with bike helmets could actually be undermining more effective ways to improve safety, noting that the real problem is people getting hit by cars.

Portland is using bicycles to revitalize a strip mall district originally build around cars. Which sounds pretty much like most of Los Angeles. So if they can do it, so can we.

A small town in Washington state passed an ordinance requiring all bike riders and skaters to wear a helmet, regardless of age.

A University of Texas student insists the local bikeshare system should provide riders with helmets. Even though there have been only two deaths on all the bikeshares operating throughout the US.

Apparently Copenhagenize’s Mikael Colville-Andersen doesn’t love Minneapolis anymore, dropping it from his list of the world’s 20 best bike cities, even though he used to recommend it. And even though he’s never been there.

Fast Company looks at New York’s bizarre crackdown on ebike-riding delivery people, and how they are being abandoned by their employers.

A Jewish letter writer concludes that the reason his brother died in a 1971 bicycling wreck while his son survived another New York bike crash 44 years later is that his brother wasn’t wearing a helmet, while his son was. Or it could have something to do with his brother getting hit by a bus.

The father of a fallen Florida bicyclist calls for more sidewalks to protect riders. A better solution would be more bike lanes — especially protected bike lanes — since sidewalk riding actually increases the risk of a wreck.

Unbelievable. After a Florida driver gets arrested for the drunken, hit-and-run death of a man on a bicycle — at over 2.5 times the legal alcohol limit — he calls the victim a dumbass for riding in the lane, and says the police should go arrest the victim’s family instead.

Miami is about to get its first woonerf, where cars, bikes and pedestrians share the street on equal terms.

 

International

A St. John’s, Newfoundland college professor is using the BikeMaps platform to develop a map of dangerous locations for bike riders.

Torontoist is back, and says it’s time to make structural solutions to the roads, because our addiction to driving is costing us lives.

A new British study shows that bicycling can help keep you young in more ways than one, including protecting the immune system. Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the heads-up.

The Guardian’s Laura Laker says yes, people on bikes to stupid things, but the real danger comes from the people wrapped in two tons of glass and steel. And a bill cracking down on dangerous cycling won’t help.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a van driver gets community service in the death of a bike rider, after making the equivalent of a left cross in front of the victim, who had the right-of-way.

Donors have raised the equivalent of over $33,000 for South African triathlete Mhlengi Gwala, who was attacked by three men who tried to cut his legs off with a chainsaw. There’s still no explanation for the bizarre attack.

A New Zealand columnist says shopkeepers are just being complete idiots for opposing a bike lane that could boost their business.

 

Finally…

When you bounce off the hood of a car, your stunt riding has probably gone just a tad too far. And who needs a ciclovía when you’ve got your own F1 track?

Morning Links: Three OC bicyclists struck by callous distracted driver, and Russian doping doc wins at Oscars

Last night, I received the following email from Allyson Vought, describing a collision with a distracted driver that sent two bicyclists to the hospital.

But fortunately, could have been much worse.

Almost lost some friends today

Well, it was a close one today for me, and 2 friends were taken to hospital after being struck by a distracted driver. Luckily no death or dismemberments, only (if there is such a thing) a few broken bones, scrapes and bruises, one concussion, and 2 very destroyed bikes.

Here are the details.

There were 6 of us in the group and we were at the end of a 22 mile out and back putt putt. We were riding our usual Brea to Diamond Bar and back easy day cruise. The incident occurred at the corner of Imperial Hwy and Puente, just 1/2 mille from the finish at Linda’s house. We were southbound on Puente and had stopped at Imperial Hwy waiting for our green light. The light changed and I was out first after seeing traffic had stopped to the left and right. Tim was 2nd, Tom was 3rd, Sigrid, Tom’s wife, was 4th then Maralyn, and Linda were the last two.

I was mid-intersection when I heard heavy skidding and I had just a moment to look to my left and saw a Black Toyota Camry (I think) heading for all of us. I pushed it and closed my eyes waiting for the hit. She JUST missed me (I was lucky) and I heard thuds, yells and screams. Witnesses say that she hit Tim on the left corner sending him flying and Tom dead center where he was thrust into the windshield and thrown forward to the pavement about 25 feet. Sigrid hit the side of the car and went down. Linda and Maralyn were able to stop OK.

Lady was on the PHONE it seems and failed to see the traffic stopped in the 2 inside lanes and just proceed through a red light and into our group. We did not see her as she came from behind the stopped cars and was passing them on the outside (fast lane) and there was no way to see her until it was too late to do anything.

Attached  is a picture of the car (see above). You will see the white on the bumper, that was Tim’s destroyed Jelly Belly Focus, and the clean spots on the hood — that was Tom’s doings.

Tim had gotten up and was sitting on the center divider and seemed lucid. There was blood below his left ear and his hand was scrapped and bloody. It may be broken and he had to get 4 stitches to close the open wound on his head. Funny thing was I took his helmet from his head, his gloves, shoes, jacket, and jersey and got him to the ambulance. We were still sorting things out and before I got to the hospital he called me asking what had happened, how was his bike, and where were his things. He was in one of those knocked out but chatty zones it seems. No memory of anything.

Tom was on the ground and in pain. Luckily his wife and Maralyn are both nurses so he was in good hands to be sure until the EMS and the Brea police arrived. They were there in minutes and took great care of our friends. We had pleantly of witnesses and we all gave statements. Kudo’s to all and they were very thorough to be sure.

We were there for about an hour giving statements and I made sure to document the scene with photos. Finished the ride and then headed to the hospital, the Irvine Med Center in Orange. Took a few minutes to find Tim as he was just being checked in and Tom was already ensconced in a room with Sigrid by his side, He was resting after all of the scans and X-rays. Not sure what was broken as the results were not in, but he remembers the whole incident quite clearly.

Tim was brought to the adjacent room about 15 minutes later and still had no clue as to what had occurred. Was not a happy camper when I told him his bike was toast.

So, it was a lucky day in that we all survived.

The older woman driver never got got off the phone — for even one second and made no comments, showed no emotions, nor exhibited any concern to the welfare of our friends. Shock or what I am not sure, but it was sure bizarre. I asked the police if anyone had checked on her and they said they had. I also went so far as to go to her window and asked how she was (on the phone) — no reply — and she did not even look my way. I  told her not to worry as no one was killed thankfully…still no response.

I DO hope she is insured.

The callousness of not even getting off the phone, let alone getting out to check on the victims, is just unbelievable. Fortunately, the crash occurred in Orange County, where the DA takes traffic crime, and distracted driving, seriously.

But please, someone tell me again how dangerous all those entitled cyclists are.

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The highlight of last night’s Oscar ceremony, at least from a cycling perspective, was the victory of the doping-themed Icarus in the best documentary category.

Oddly, the response from RT, aka Russia Today, to the film that exposed the country’s systematic doping and led to the loss of previous Olympic medals and banishment from last month’s winter Olympics, was something less than positive.

Go figure.

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USA Today offers an inspiring story about an LA marathoner and cyclist who was paralyzed by a red light-running driver while riding her bike. And shortly afterwards, committed herself to training to compete in a Florida half-marathon as a handcyclist.

Although the story is just a tad late, since the race was run in January; she finished in 1:13:20.

And tragic that stories like this are even necessary.

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Local

KPCC asks LADOT’s Seleta Reynolds if Vision Zero can really eliminate LA traffic deaths. Meanwhile, the Daily News says a lack of funding is setting Vision Zero up for failure.

Curbed calls for making the Oscar street closures permanent.

No, there won’t be a Marathon Crash Ride before next week’s LA Marathon, for the second straight year.

The Pasadena Star-News looks at plans for a lane reduction on Orange Grove Blvd; naturally, the traffic safety deniers want to keep the street free-flowing and dangerous.

 

State

This is why people keep dying on our streets. A 95-year old man just got his driver’s license renewed until he’s 100 — without even having to take a driver’s test.

Palo Alto residents demand the city halt plans for roundabouts, claiming they make the street more dangerous — even though studies show they reduce serious crashes up to 80%. Another case of traffic safety deniers opposing projects they don’t understand, without giving them time to succeed.

A San Francisco paper looks at the efforts of car advocates to convert a hard-won bike lane on the Richmond Bridge to car use, allowing bike riders to have limited access only when drivers don’t want it, and bizarrely describing that as sharing the road. Maybe someone should tell them about induced demand, let alone complete streets.

 

National

It’s easy to forget that service members from other countries have fought, and been injured, in Afghanistan; two British veterans will ride down the left coast from Oregon to Mexico to raise funs for a charity for injured vets.

A new paper blames vehicular cycling for a 40-year delay in building bike infrastructure in the US.

A writer with the Denver Post says he doesn’t want ebikes on bikeways “already packed with the unaware, the inconsiderate and the distracted.” Then again, he doesn’t want those people on the paths, either.

Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park will allow mountain bikes on a two-mile section of a lakefront bike path for the first time.

A New York counclimember says he feels threatened and intimidated by bicyclists angry that he backed out of his promised support for a protected bike lane.

DC-area bike shops have joined the boycott of Vista Outdoor over their gun and ammunition subsidiaries.

 

International

A Halifax, Canada business association opposes a prospective protected bike lane because it would mean the loss of 55 parking spaces, and would rather locate it on the sidewalk. Never mind that it could bring hundreds more customers on bikes. Or that using sidewalk space for a bike lane would mean a less walkable business district, which would probably have a far greater negative impact than losing a few parking spaces.

A Canadian city is just the latest choose parking over a protected bike lane, disappointing local bicyclists who feel threatened on the streets.

The Guardian talks with the founder of women’s bike brand Liv Cycling, who says shrinking and pinking women’s bikes isn’t good enough.

UK Parliament ministers are prepared to propose a new crime of causing death by dangerous cycling, in response to a recent case where a careless bicyclist killed a pedestrian. The Guardian responds that judging people by their means of transport brings out the worst in everyone.

British running great Roger Bannister was one of us; the first man to break the four-minute mile took up bicycling after he had to stop running in 1975 following a car crash.

A British radio host says stop targeting bicyclists, because they’re the real victims.

Ireland opens a 26-mile crushed gravel rail-to-trail conversion.

A cyclist in Kathmandu, Nepal says he loves riding a bicycle and he’s going to keep on riding, despite the country’s deep reverence for the west and its motor vehicles.

South African police make an arrest in the hit-and-run death of a rugby team manager who was killed while warming up for a bike race.

An Aussie letter writer complains about a presumed liability proposal, saying it would only benefit a whining, arrogant minority of cyclists who don’t pay for the roads, at the expense of those poor, put-upon people in cars. No, really.

A Kuala Lumpur writer can’t believe the city would put in a bike lane, since the only ones who won’t be using it are the ones on bicycles.

 

Competitive Cycling

No, those testosterone patches that showed up on the doorstep of Team Sky in 2011 didn’t get there by accident. But sure, the era of doping is over. Right.

Speaking of Team Sky, a British commission concludes that Bradley Wiggins use of a banned corticosteroid under a therapeutic use exemption contributed to his win in the 2012 Tour de France, accusing the team of crossing an ethical line.

The race director for the Giro d’Italia says the race isn’t getting rid of podium girls, and says dropping them, as the Vuelta has done and the Tour de France is considering, is just a passing trend. In other words, not treating women as a trophy for men to win, and showing respect for them — and women cyclists — is just a fad. Nothing sexist about that.

Cycling Tips offers photos from Saturday’s sloppy but exciting Strade Bianche.; Belgium’s Wout van Aert overcame leg cramps to make the podium.

American Tejay Van Garderen is out after crashing into a team car on the first day of the Paris-Nice stage race; fortunately, he wasn’t seriously injured.

Over 1,600 competitors are expected for next weekend’s two-stage Tour of Murrieta.

 

Finally…

When you want to stop a law that benefits bike riders, find one to oppose it. Forget bike polo; it’s time to try unicycle hockey.

And now you can buy your very own stolen dockless bikeshare bike.

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Thanks to George W for his generous contribution to help keep this site coming your way every day. Donations are always welcome.

 

Morning Links: Unidentified bike rider in Mission Hills hospital; minor changes made to Foothills Blvd bike lanes

Today marks the first day of the third annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive. Your support helps keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

Or nearly every day, the way this year has gone.

As usual, you can donate with just a few clicks using PayPal.

Or now you can also donate in just seconds using the Zelle app — which is probably already in the banking app on your phone — by sending your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com;* you can download the app for iOS or Android if you don’t already have it.

Any amount is truly and deeply appreciated.

*Remove the spaces and format as a standard email address.

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Officials at a Mission Hills hospital are attempting to identify a bike rider who was injured in a crash in Van Nuys last Saturday.

The victim is described as a Latino man who appears to be in his early 30s, 5 feet, 9 inches tall, and 173 pounds. He has brown eyes and short black hair, a short mustache and beard, with Maritza tattooed on his ring finger and Jade on his right forearm.

Anyone with information is urged to call Providence Holy Cross Medical Center at 818/365-8051 and ask for the nurse supervisors’ office.

Let this be yet another reminder to always have some form of ID with you when you ride.

………

After residents made questionable claims about traffic chaos and emergency vehicles unable to get through on Foothill Blvd during the recent La Tuna fire, the city agreed to make changes.

But unlike Playa del Rey, the bike lanes will remain on the road.

………

Local

KCET profiles a day in the life of carfree, single-speed bike-riding chef Will Marquardt, Chef de Cuisine at Petit Trois, regarded as one of America’s best restaurants. Although someone might want to explain the difference between Hollywood and West Hollywood to them.

LA Weekly looks at a bike-riding guerrilla street artist who turns discarded furniture into sad clown faces.

Santa Clarita sheriff’s deputies arrested two bike riders on drug and DUI charges.

 

State

Orange County sheriff’s deputies are looking for the owners of the 1,000 bikes they recovered after clearing out a homeless camp, even though most have been stripped and are considered beyond repair.

A San Luis Obispo columnist says the city is engaged in social engineering in an attempt to force people to ride bicycles. Never mind that every decision made by government at any level is a form of social engineering. Including past policies that have lead us to this auto-centric dystopia.

Next City looks at San Francisco’s Vision Zero rapid response teams. As opposed to Los Angeles, where they usually get around to doing something about dangerous streets eventually. Or not.

Sad news from Stockton, where a bike rider was killed in a hit-and-run as he was riding home with food to make his family’s Thanksgiving meal.

 

National

Maybe driverless cars won’t run over us after all; Apple claims to have made a major breakthrough in detecting bike riders and pedestrians on the road.

Wired says if you want to see the future of cities, you need to keep an eye on the curb.

A young man connects with his Cherokee heritage through the annual Remember the Removal Memorial Bike Ride.

Austin TX has doubled the rate it’s building bikeways by employing three key steps, including finishing designs onsite.

A New Hampshire woman was shot by a hunter aiming for deer as she rode her bike near a park; naturally, no charges were filed.

A Queens deli owner says a new bike lane is murdering his business. Change is inevitable, for any business. You can waste your time trying to fight it, or embrace it and flourish.

It takes a major scumbag to steal a five-year old Florida girl’s bicycle and scooter right in front of her.

 

International

Ontario cyclists vow to return after authorities bulldoze an illegal mountain bike course.

A new Canadian study says bike commuting could be damaging your hearing.

Caught on video: A British bike rider captures the hit-and-run collision that knocked him off his bike on a roundabout.

The UK doesn’t require license plates for bicycles, so a school decided to do it themselves.

A Belfast newspaper says it’s time to invest in moving people through the city, rather than cars. Which is a lesson Los Angeles desperately needs to learn, but clearly hasn’t yet.

A Limerick, Ireland bike rider was busted for riding salmon with no hands; he ended up paying the equivalent of $142 in fines.

Evidently, the US isn’t the only country that doesn’t adequately instruct cops in bike law, as an Irish police chief gets the law wrong on riding abreast.

BMW envisions a world where ebike riders get their own sun-protected double-decker roads. Just not here in the US.

Italy’s Pinarello apologizes for the bike industry’s latest tone deaf ad.

A sports website looks at how bicycling has worked in conjunction with language to shape Italian culture.

A South African letter writer says greater tolerance would stop the cycle of cyclist abuse.

Caught on video too: An Aussie truck driver appears to be trying to see just how close he can pass a bike rider without actually hitting him.

In a bizarre crash, a Chinese boy had to be rescued after the brake handle on his bike somehow ended up jammed up his nose.

 

Competitive Cycling

Starting in January, pro cyclists will be able to use marijuana products, as long as they don’t contain any THC. Which is odd, since no one would say Snoop Dog or Willie Nelson would have an unfair advantage. Except maybe in an eating contest.

The new head of pro cycling’s governing body says maybe it’s time for a salary cap on cycling teams to improve competitiveness.

Nice story from the LA Times about a 16-year old Columbian rider who returned to cycling after his family struggled to buy him the bike he needed to compete.

 

Finally…

Seriously, anyone can do cyclocross on a cross bike. Go ahead and have that extra cup of coffee after your next ride.

And nothing like teaching your kids to steal bikes at an early age.

………

Don’t forget to support your local bike shop today on Black Friday, and especially tomorrow on Small Business Saturday. Just stop in and buy something, anything.

And take a moment to read a pair of guest posts we featured last year from bike shop owners explaining what that matters.  

Update: Hit-and-run driver critically injures Hyde Park bike rider; LAPD fails to send hit-and-run alert or mention reward

Once again, a heartless coward has left a South LA bike rider bleeding in the street.

According to press release from the LAPD, a 35-year old man was riding some sort of motorized bicycle on 48th Street at Ninth Ave in the Hype Park neighborhood around 3:40 Monday afternoon when he was struck by a car driven by an unidentified driver.

The driver had been parked at the eastbound curb when he suddenly pulled out, turning left across the traffic lanes and into the path of the westbound bike rider, in a crash captured by a security cam.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was taken to a nearby hospital in critical condition.

There are bike lanes in both direction on 48th, though it appears he was traveling in the through lane at or near the speed of traffic.

Police are looking for a burgundy or red late 1990s Oldsmobile Cutlass four door sedan. The department reports the two people in the car had just left Kenny’s Liquor, where they were captured on security footage.

The driver is described as a male Hispanic, approximately 5 feet 8 inches tall, between 180 and 200 pounds with dark hair. He was seen wearing a gray baseball cap, a gray jacket, white t-shirt, and blue jeans.

The passenger is described as a male Hispanic, approximately 5 feet 8 inches tall, with black hair and a mustache. He was seen wearing a red long sleeve shirt, black pants, and brown shoes.

Anyone with information urged to call LAPD South Traffic Division at 323/421-2500.

Oddly, the press release does not mention the city’s standing reward program providing up to $50,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of hit-and-run drivers; in this case, it provides an automatic $25,000 reward for a collision resulting in a severe injury.

It’s also strange that the LAPD did not use LA’s hit-and-run alert system that was approved by the city council early last year alerting the public to be on the lookout for suspect vehicles. For some reason, the department seems reluctant to use the program, even though it was created for cases exactly like this.

There is also a statewide program that was signed into law last year allowing hit-and-run alerts on state highway signs.

Maybe someday the LAPD will actually use some of the tools available to them to enlist the public’s help to catch people like this.

We can dream, right?

Update: Police have made an arrest in the case.

Update 2: In an LAPD press conference, South LA detectives identified the victim as 36-year old Los Angeles resident Gabrail Hasan, the father of nine kids under 15. 

The tattoo artist and vice president of the LA DTM (Doing the Most) Motorized Bike Club remains in critical condition in the ICU following emergency surgery for a crushed aorta.

Morning Links: Former pro Steve Tilford seriously injured, Mercedes decides who to save, and retracing a rare bike

Hopefully we’ve finally got the problem with email notifications fixed. Let me know if you’re still not getting them.

………

Former pro cyclist Steve Tilford, one of the first wave of American cyclists to enter the top levels of the sport, suffered a severe head injury in a fall last week.

Tilford was participating in a regular group ride when his bike struck a dog that had run into the street and he went over his handlebars, striking his head on the pavement; he was not wearing a helmet.

While the prognosis is positive, he is expected to take a year of intensive therapy to make a full recovery.

Another rider who crashed into him suffered a collapsed lung and four broken ribs.

And no, there’s no word on the dog.

For Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson, it brings up the debate over whether or not to wear a helmet.

Meanwhile, BMX pro Scotty Cranmer is in critical condition in a Las Vegas hospital after falling face-first when his front wheel got stuck in a hole; as of Sunday night, a crowdfunding site had raised over $25,000 for his medical expenses.

………

In the ongoing debate over self-driving cars, Mercedes Benz decides the lives of its occupants are more important than the lives of others.

After all, they’re the ones paying for it, right?

Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the heads-up.

………

Nice piece from Peter Flax about tracking down the history of a rare Richard Sachs racing bike that won the collegiate cyclocross championship for Adam Myerson in 1997, after it found its way back to its original owner.

………

Twenty-year old Dutch rider Amalie Dideriksen outsprints the favorites to take the women’s world championship. Meanwhile Peter Sagan repeats as the men’s champ and Mark Cavendish settles for second, while John Degenkolb gives another rider a squirt.

The head of UCI praises Qatar for developing a cycling culture, while saying with a straight face that there hasn’t been any cases of heat exhaustion in the extreme desert temperatures, despite the many riders who collapsed along the course.

Aussie cycling champ Anna Meares calls it a career after winning six Olympic medals.

The cycling community wants to ban the narcotic painkiller Tramadol, which is popular in the pro peloton to help riders bounce back from the pain of racing. Meanwhile, former world champ David Millar explains how the therapeutic use exemption allows riders to get away with doping; thanks to Ralph Durham and George Wolfberg for the link.

………

Local

A homeless Santa Monica man was found with bike parts and a nine-inch bolt cutter, admitted to being a meth addict, and told investigators how to bust a U-lock by twisting the bike frame. And was let go with a citation, along with his companion, for medical reasons. Homeless people need help, not jail. But writing a damn ticket to a confessed bike thief isn’t going to stop anyone.

Santa Monica will host a Kiddical Mass Halloween costume ride on the 29th.

Santa Clarita is the site of a Gran Fondo next Saturday to benefit the fight against Parkinson’s disease.

Long Beach is looking for volunteers for their annual bike count this Thursday.

There’s a special place in hell for anyone who’d steal a bike from a Long Beach man who had passed out from a diabetic incident.

 

State

A 15-mile stretch of bike path along the Santa Ana River due to be completed by 2019 would bring long-standing plans for a continuous 100-mile bike and equestrian trail reaching from the San Bernardino Mountains to Huntington Beach one step closer to completion.

A San Diego bicyclist was injured Sunday when her bike hit a steel plate in the road covering repair work. Which is a reminder that raised plates can knock you off your bike, while the plates themselves can provide little or no traction, especially if there’s moisture present.

A Santa Cruz letter writer says it’s your own damn fault if you get hit by a car if you don’t come to a complete, foot-on-the-ground stop at stop signs. Actually, there’s no requirement that bike riders have to put a foot down when coming to a stop. And it can actually increase the risk, while being guaranteed to piss off the drivers around you if you insist on putting a foot down at every stop.

 

National

The Feds have finally concluded that bike boxes really do reduce conflicts between bike riders and motorists at intersections.

A writer looks at why cyclists and drivers don’t get along, explaining that insurance is a better option than trying to get even with someone. Although it’s a false premise; the overwhelming majority bicyclists and drivers do get along; it’s the exceptions that are the problem.

A former Hawaii police officer has been indicted for negligent homicide, tampering with evidence and filing a false report in the hit-and-run death of a vacationing bike rider; he was fired from the force as a result of his actions.

Life is cheap in Illinois, where the death of a mother of five who was riding in a crosswalk marked with flashers merits a lousy $150 fine. Although it will result in a change in the state’s driver’s manual requiring motorists to stop for a crosswalk warning signal until pedestrians and bicyclists have safely crossed the road. Because evidently common sense is not a requirement for a license, there or anywhere else.

A Chattanooga writer says bike riders shouldn’t be licensed and aren’t the real problem, but bike lanes don’t belong on busy streets. But what the hell is a “California-type politician”?

A 15-year old Pennsylvania boy was sentenced to spend the next 35 years behind bars for shooting another teenager while attempting to steal his bicycle.

Most drunk drivers get off with a slap on the wrist. A Delaware bicyclist busted for biking under the influence following a crash got 32 days in county jail, plus 90 days house arrest, a $1,500 fine and lost her driver’s license for 18 months. In California, that would merit just a $250 fine, with no points on your license.

NPR takes a look at sidewalk cycling in DC, making the point that, legal or not, you’re usually safer on the street — which is exactly where pedestrians want you. Thanks to Joni Yung for the tip.

 

International

Bike Radar offers 11 ways to be a greener cyclist. Like don’t drop your damn trash on the side of the road — and that includes gel packs and CO2 cartridges.

Canadian cyclists are outraged at Orange Theory Fitness for co-opting ghost bikes for their marketing campaign. Apparently, the chain gets enough benefit from the publicity that they don’t care about offending bike riders, since they keep doing it, despite the complaints.

A front page editorial in the Times of London blames segregated bike lanes for helping to increase traffic congestion, but hides most of the story behind a pay wall. Bike Biz points out just .02% of London roads even have them, never mind that the real cause of increased congestion is the millions of additional cars on the road.

Once again, bike riders are heroes, as a group of passing bicyclists save the life of a British woman who drove into a lake.

An Irish writer complains about the moral ambiguity of inviting Lance Armstrong to speak at a public event in Dublin, while imagining him being wheeled out in a mask like Hannibal Lector.

Two Indian cyclists rode 2,700 miles to raise awareness of the need for girls’ education.

A group of 30 cyclists plowed into a 95-year old Aussie man, then just left him lying on the side of the road. Although, despite what the article initially says, one rider identifying himself as a doctor did stop briefly to check the victim out before rejoining the other riders. Regardless, there’s simply no excuse to leave an injured person like that, young or old.

 

Finally…

No, you can’t peddle ice cream while pedaling in Victoria, BC. If you’re going to ride your bike over the roof of a car, make sure it’s your car.

And it’s no surprise that drivers who accidently run down cyclists just get a slap on the wrist when doing it on purpose only gets a year in jail.

 

Morning Links: Feds adopt bike/ped Vision Zero; Emerald Necklace Gateway opens; partial Ballona Creek closure

One quick note.

It’s come to my attention that the email notification informing subscribers about new posts on this site has stopped working for some reason. So if you’re not getting emails when new posts go up, we’re working on it.

In the meantime, I hope you’ll just keep coming back every day until we can get it fixed.

Thanks to Marvin Davis for the heads-up.

………

Big news from DC, as the Federal Highway Administration has adopted Vision Zero.

At least for people on foot or two wheels.

The FHWA’s new strategic plan calls for reducing bicycling and pedestrian deaths by 80% by 2031, and eliminating them entirely in the next 20 to 30 years.

It also calls for a 50% increase in trips under five miles for bicyclists and one mile for pedestrians by 2025.

All by promoting better design standards, better data collection and reducing traffic speeds on urban streets.

……….

Thursday marked the opening of the first phase of the Emerald Necklace Gateway.

The 1.1 mile bike path connects the Metro Duarte/City of Hope Gold Line station with the existing San Gabriel River Bike Trail to form a 28-mile long route linking the upper part of the San Gabriel Valley to Seal Beach.

However, the San Gabriel Valley Tribune reports the bikeway is only half finished, despite being in the works for more than a decade; the full path is not scheduled to be completed until 2021 at best.

Bike SGV offers photos from yesterday’s opening.

………

Speaking of bikeways, don’t plan on riding the eastern section of the Ballona Creek bike path during the day next week.

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Today’s common theme is cross-country bike riding.

Hats off to Ivan Schmidt; the 16-year old Long Beach teen rode 1,800 miles from British Columbia to Tijuana, raising $2,500 to fight rheumatoid arthritis.

A 67-year old man rode 2,400 miles from Chicago to San Bernardino, after surviving two open heart surgeries, six bypasses and an aortic valve replacement.

A retired fighter pilot is riding from Maine to Key West to honor fallen and disabled service members and their families.

A Canadian cyclist has raised over $150,000 for cancer research, traveling more than 3,500 miles since beginning a trans-Canada ride in June.

And 41 cyclists set off on a 1,325-mile self-supported ride down the length of Sweden, beginning 200 miles above the Arctic Circle.

……….

VeloNews talks with cycling legend Eddy Merckx about bike design, his favorite riders and the evolving standards of cool in the bike world.

Wired looks at the dramatic evolution in handcycles used by Paralympic athletes, leading to today’s $10,000 carbon fiber bikes.

………

Local

According to the Census Bureau, bike commuting in LA County has finally reached a full 1%. Just imagine what it could be if we had safe places to ride.

CiclaValley can barely control his excitement over two Valley CicLAvias in 2017.

Santa Monica police will conduct another of their bicycle and pedestrian enforcement days today, followed a second one on Monday. Standard rules apply; obey the letter of the law while riding in the city so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

Long Beach’s unnamed bikeshare program has seen 3,500 people ride 35,000 miles in its first six months; it will eventually have 500 bikes at 50 stations.

Cycling in the South Bay calls for cyclists to turn out in support of Bikes May Use Full Lane signs at the Palos Verdes Estates city council meeting on Sept. 27th, even though it may require a lot of sitting.

 

State

Pink’s five-year old daughter is one of us.

Work has begun on two bridge widening projects in Carpinteria required to widen Highway 101, which will eventually include two new coastal bike lanes. Isn’t it cute how officials pretend widening highways will actually solve their traffic problems?

Holy one-man crime wave, Batman! A Ventura man is under arrest after stealing two crucifixes from the San Buenaventura Mission, then using them as weapons to attack people, before busting the window of a thrift shop and stealing a bicycle.

Other football programs get in trouble with the NCAA because their players tool around in Escalades and sports cars someone bought for them; at Stanford, it was a $3,500 bicycle.

A San Francisco woman was beaten and robbed by three bike riders when she approached them at an intersection to talk. Seriously, 3:24 am is probably not the best time to engage strangers in conversation, whether or not they’re on bikes.

Pleasanton officials approve safety changes to an intersection where a 72-year old bike rider was killed in June.

Marin drivers break out the torches and pitchforks over fears a proposed road diet will snarl traffic, even though studies show they often improve traffic flow.

A Chico letter writer calls on local cycling clubs to take the lead on cleaning up a bike path and reclaiming it from homeless squatters.

 

National

Bicycling explains how to sneak in a midweek overnight bikepacking trip. And enjoy your new women on bikes emojis.

NPR looks at how tactical urbanism is making a difference with small, incremental DIY changes throughout the US.

Bike rooms are the latest must-have amenity for any well-turned out luxury apartment building or condos.

Portland Police are looking for a spandex-clad road cyclist who yelled racial slurs and pepper sprayed a family of black kids. There is simply no excuse for crap like that. Ever. Period.

A 74-year old resident of a Wyoming senior home made his escape by bicycle after shooting three people before taking his own life.

The Wall Street Journal says it can be a struggle to find a bikeshare bicycle in New York at rush hour, as people are often greeted with empty racks. Probably because they’re being used to practice operatic arias.

It takes a real lowlife to steal a Mobile AL bicycle coffee cart used to raise funds and awareness for human trafficking victims.

The distracted driver accused of killing a Georgia bike rider while high on prescription drugs had two other DUIs in the last three months, and had a severe drug dependency problem for at least four years. And yet she was allowed to keep driving until she actually killed someone.

 

International

What’s the point of building what may be the world’s tallest bicycle if you can’t get the bike chains you need to ride it through the Cuban embargo? At 33 feet, it’s 13 feet taller than the current record holder, LA’s STOOPIDTALLER, which is even taller than the famous STOOPIDTALL.

Bicycles donated through World Vision and World Bicycle Relief can be key to reducing teen pregnancy and keeping girls in school in Kenya.

A Masai elder is one of us, as he leads a group of bicyclists through Tanzania as part of the 7,500 mile Tour d’Afrique.

 

Finally…

Just because no one needs a VCR anymore, don’t stuff it in a briefcase and drop it off in front of a federal courthouse while riding your bike. Mooning rush hour traffic in China.

And if you already have an outstanding felony warrant on a weapons charge, don’t ride your bike with an open booze container.

And whatever you do, don’t tell the other inmates you were subdued by an 81-year old man.

 

Morning Links: Rough days for SoCal cyclists, RAAM champ critically injured, and Pokémon goes Ovarian Psychos

It’s been a rough few days for SoCal cyclists.

A bike rider was hospitalized after being struck by a car in Pomona Monday night; no word on the victim’s condition. Thanks to Joe Linton for the heads-up.

A 16-year old girl is in critical condition after being hit by a Dial-A-Ride Bus while riding in Riverside with her mother; KABC-7 shows her mangled bike.

………

Sad news from Ohio, as Danny Chew, two-time winner of the Race Across America, was paralyzed from the waist down after a solo fall while riding with a friend near Lodi, Ohio.

Chew was riding around 20 to 25 mph when he drifted off the road as the result of a dizzy spell, and broke his neck crashing into a drainage ditch. His long-term prognosis following emergency surgery won’t be known for several days.

A crowdfunding site has raised over $37,000 to help pay his medical bills.

He is an eight-time RAAM finisher, once crossing the US in eight days, seven hours, and 14 minutes as a solo competitor, and just 200,000 miles from his goal of riding one million miles on his bike.

………

Three-time Vuelta winner Alberto Contador predicts Columbia’s Nairo Quintana will win this year’s race, though second place Chris Froome still has his hopes up.

Froome insists over half of the peloton should have been eliminated for missing the time cut-off, which would have left just 71 riders to finish the race.

………

Local

Former LA City Controller Laura Chick endorses Jesse Creed in his race to oust incumbent Paul “No Bikes On Westwood” Koretz from the city council. Meanwhile, Josef-Bray Ali is hosting a fundraiser this Monday in his race to unseat Gil “No Bikes Anywhere” Cedillo.

Curbed races to Dodger Stadium to find the fastest way to get there from Union Station; the bicycle finished a close second to the car. But didn’t have to pay those parking fees, either.

Harrison Ford may be one of us, but doesn’t seem to have the hang of roof racks yet. Thanks to Steve Herbert for the link.

CiclaValley feels the call of the Great White North.

Pasadena’s Public Health Director will tell the city’s Complete Streets Coalition that their work aligns with public health efforts at the coalition’s monthly meeting tonight.

That didn’t take long. Just weeks after the Raleigh bike store opened in Santa Monica, thieves broke in early Monday and stole five e-bikes worth nearly $20,000.

Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson urges everyone to come out to support bike safety efforts in NIMBY haven Palos Verdes Estates at tonight’s Traffic Safety Committee meeting.

 

State

An Anaheim man has ridden across the country 64 times to raise funds to fight multiple sclerosis.

Santa Ana is offering eight hour Confident Cycling classes the next two weekends.

A writer for a North San Diego County paper calls for curb protected bike lanes to replace the painted lanes in the wake of a hit-and-run that left a cyclist seriously injured.

Sacramento police make their 41st bait bike arrest of the year to fight back against bike theft. Los Angeles doesn’t even have a bait bike program.

 

National

A health website attempts to raise a panic about the harmful effects of bicycling, which turns out to be nothing more than the old discredited fears that too much riding may make you a candidate for those ED commercials.

CNET recommends a $45 waterproof, 1080p action cam.

A new $250 smartphone attachment will allow you to control your phone and answer calls without taking your hands off your handlebars. Or you can get all that built into your helmet.

A Boulder CO designer has created a simplified bikeway map that includes ratings for difficulty.

Wichita KS changes the law to make biking under the influence a less serious offense than DUI.

A Dallas cyclist nearly gets into a fight with an aggressive driver who tells him to get on the sidewalk.

An Arkansas mountain bike park draws 1,000 cyclists a week; it will be the site of the International Mountain Bicycling World Summit in November.

An Ohio man gets four years in prison for blinding a 72-year old bike rider in one eye with a paint gun; however, he could be out in as little as six months with good behavior. Another reminder to always wear some form of eye protection while you ride. And have a good lawyer on speed dial.

New York’s Vision Zero is too ambitious, according to a writer the Post, who proposes making it Vision 123 instead.

The New York Times discovers the Rolling Coal movement, and drivers who think they have a God-given right to belch soot and smoke in the face of bike riders and pedestrians.

Solange Knowles is one of us, as she takes Ed Droste on a bike tour of her adopted hometown of New Orleans.

 

International

Yahoo offers typo-filled advice on how to ride your bike around the world.

Bike Radar lists the ten best movies about roadies. No, not those roadies.

City Lab takes up the issue of whether traffic dangers and population outweighs the benefits of bicycling, after the recent report from the Financial Times, and concludes the real danger is sitting on your ass. Thanks to Jon and Patrick Murray for the FT link.

An Ottawa columnist says separated bike lanes aren’t enough to protect cyclists, while another urges the city to embrace Vision Zero and consider all traffic deaths preventable.

Montreal considers improving safety for bicyclists by narrowing lanes, reducing speed limits and moving stop lines back to make room for bike riders at traffic lights.

A London bike lawyer says the police response to the recent Jeremy Vine case offers hope that they might finally take incidents involving other riders seriously.

Caught on video: A London cyclist catches a bus driver using his phone to place bets on soccer while driving.

A recent Polish immigrant tells the horrifying story of the vicious gay bashing he suffered while riding his bike in a Dublin park, and the suggestion from the investigating officer that he somehow provoked it. And what the hell difference would it make if he did?

Welsh cyclists — and anyone else — now have the legal right to propose new biking and walking routes, and local leaders are required to listen.

Apparently, road rage is no different in Mumbai than anywhere else.

 

Finally…

That’s not a bike, it’s a pedal-powered seismograph. Throwing your bike at police officers after stealing hash browns from McDonalds is not a generally accepted usage.

And let’s all go for a musical Pokémon bike ride.

Especially since the video seems to feature LA’s Ovarian Psychos.

Pokemon

Ovarian Psychos

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