Tag Archive for bike safety

Morning Links: Torrance tri canceled, Riverside carnage continues, and bike advocate ponders if it’s time to quit

If you haven’t read it yet, don’t miss yesterday’s guest post Letter From St. Louis, from CyclingSavvy’s Karen Karabell.

Go ahead. We’ll wait.

Then buckle in. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover today.

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Don’t bother showing up for this weekend’s triathlon in Torrance.

Word comes from Todd Munson that the race has been called on account of apparent greed and billing irregularities from the cities involved, and not involved.

This is what the organizers had to say.

Yesterday, the city of Torrance canceled the 2016 LA Triathlon at Torrance Beach.  With much regret, we are forced to announce this cancellation to our participants and sponsors only 4 days prior to race day.  We understand that the cancellation will come with great disappointment to those of you who have worked hard and prepared for months toward this year’s triathlon.  We are disappointed by the unexpected and unprecedented circumstances and demands that have unfolded to cause this cancellation.

We have listed the key points that led to the city’s cancellation of our event in an effort to offer some immediate transparency to all participants:

  1. On August 31st, the City of Torrance sent to Pacific Sports an email demanding advanced payment, in full, to the city, prior to the event, for city services.  There was no detail of the charges, simply amounts in total and the requirement to bring two cashier’s checks by 5pm.   This is not standard practice in other municipalities and certainly not in those where all previous invoices had been paid in a timely fashion.
  2. In the same email on August  31st, we were informed that a significant separate payment was also required to be paid to the neighboring City of Palos Verdes, a city in which we have no footprint, no permit, no participants enter their city as part of our course, no liability coverage, and no relationship of any kind.  This demand is unprecedented in our 36 year history as an event production company, and to our knowledge unprecedented in the event industry in the United States.    This payment is demanded by Torrance (to be paid to Palos Verdes) although we have never been made aware of the apparent business relationship (although it has been requested) between Torrance (where we do have permits) and the city of Palos Verdes.
  3. Also in this email, it was finally revealed by the City of Torrance, after an audit requested by Pacific Sports, the city had significantly overbilled us by an amount in excess of 30% to the total in 2015 for city services.   We have strong evidence that the 2014 invoice may have been overbilled as well.   Importantly, we have no reliability that the advance payment demanded for 2016 (without detail of its calculation) is backed up by verifiable charges which will only be available after the event has occurred.
  4. Since August 31st, we have worked tirelessly with all levels of the city government including the city council and Mayor’s office in an attempt to bring resolution.  We offered a structured and fair written compromise on these issues in attempt to  insure the event went on as planned on September 11th.  Ultimately, the city offered no compromise or proposed solution and informed us they had unilaterally canceled the event.

We are upset and deeply disappointed by the cancellation, but the requirements were unreasonable and excessive.  Accepting the terms would have compromised the entire event and were untenable for us to continue at the current site for the LA Triathlon.

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Yet another teenager has been injured riding her bicycle in Riverside, where it’s apparently open season on bike-riding school kids.

A 14-year old girl is in stable condition after being hit by a pickup while riding in a crosswalk just 100 feet from her school Wednesday morning. The driver fled the scene after stopping briefly; she was taken into custody on a nearby highway about 10 minutes later.

Although despite what the story says, it’s hard to imagine the driver was “fully cooperative” with police when she tried to make a getaway before being caught.

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Lucas James Guidroz pled not guilty to in the hit-and-run death of math and music teacher, musician and cyclist Rod Bennett as he was riding on Placerita Canyon Road last May. Guidroz faces felony counts of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and hit-and-run driving resulting in death or serious injury.

Note to Santa Clarita Valley Signal: Show a little respect, and get the victim’s name right in the caption.

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In the wake of yesterday’s blog post from Surly’s Skip Bernet, in which he said he’s done riding on streets due to the dangers posed by cars, long-time LA bike advocate Examined Spoke questions whether he wants to keep riding his bike.

Is cycling in traffic safe? I can find statistical support for any answer I want: yes, no, who knows. My own experiences suggest the answer should be no, not safe. In 2009 I was rear-ended while riding on Los Feliz Boulevard; last year I was brushed (side-swiped) on Fountain Avenue. I can recount several other close passes, terrifying moments — the usual stuff that you will hear from almost any cyclist. I shrugged off these experiences when they happened, but they still haunt me. They’ve also made me into a poor advocate; I cannot argue for cycling’s essential safety, I am a personal testament to its dangers. As much as I want to believe the opposite, little by little I’ve had to admit to myself that I don’t feel safe on the road. I never feel safe out there.

It’s a very well-written and challenging piece, and one that poses some very difficult questions.

If anyone wants to respond to it, let me know. I’ll be happy to share your thoughts here.

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The bus carrying Britain’s Team Sky pro cycling team nearly made mince pie out of a cyclist on a narrow country road.

The team contacted him a few hours after the video went online to apologize.

They should give him an autographed team bike, at the very least. And a new pair of shorts, since he probably needs them after that.

Meanwhile, Lance’s doping ban has been partially lifted, so he is now free to compete in non-bike related Olympic sports, like ski jumping, pole vaulting and synchronized swimming.

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Local

Props to CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo for beginning work to create a pedestrian plaza, including bike racks, on the Hoover Triangle in University Park. Now if he could just do something to make it safer to bike or walk there.

More honorees at the LACBC’s upcoming Firefly Ball include Culver City Council Member Meghan Sahli-Wells and The Walt Disney Company.

CiclaValley shares video of the new Spring Street bike lane between 1st and 2nd Streets in DTLA.

Damien Newton talks with Marisa Creter of the San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments about plans for a 200 mile bike superhighway crisscrossing the entire valley.

WeHoVille examines the 18-month timeline to reconstruct Santa Monica Blvd through Beverly Hills; the street will be widened, providing enough room for the bike lanes that won’t be installed. Increased costs and the objections of residents to widening one narrow section of the street was given as the reason not to install much-needed bike lanes on the boulevard. So why won’t they commit to adding them now that the street is being widened anyway?

Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson reports on Wednesday’s meeting of the Palos Verdes Estates Traffic Safety Committee as only he can.

 

State

A Canadian man is riding over 1,500 miles to attend next month’s Desert Trip music festival in Indio on his Pedego ebike.

Pismo Beach votes to move a bike path into a busy parking lot to keep it from besmirching a coastal subdivision for wealthy homeowners.

Fresno jurors find an accused career criminal not guilty of attempted murder of a police officer in a struggle that began when the cops tried to stop him for riding without a light.

 

National

Streetsblog says the US has the worst per capita traffic fatality rate in the developed world because we drive too damn much. Not to mention too damn fast, too damn drunk and too damn distracted.

Zocolo Public Square says modern roads resulted from a coalition of early bicyclists and rural farmers banding together to demand better streets, only to see cyclists squeezed out with the advent of the automobile.

Build your own DIY ebike that looks like it would probably alert the bomb squad.

Bicycling offers advice on how to ride through your pregnancy.

Exploring Hawaii’s Lanai island by bicycle, where only 3,200 people live and there are no traffic lights.

The Tacoma teenager tackled by police as she rode her bicycle through a mall parking lot is suing the police department, as well as the officer in question, the mall and its security company.

American Denise Mueller hopes to set a new motor-paced bicycle land speed record of over 168 mph at Utah’s famed Bonneville Salt Flats this weekend.

A Chicago area writer can’t seem to figure out if he’s pro or anti bike, saying allowing bicycles in wilderness areas is a bad idea, but giving bicyclists the same rights as drivers is a good one — especially if it means more riders get tickets.

An Op-Ed writer in the Chicago Tribune complains about a parking protected bike lane, and insists that bike riders can’t be ticketed — or pay fees — because they don’t have operators licenses. Never mind that most bicyclists have driver’s licenses, like most other human beings in this country, and can be ticketed even without them.

Cleveland officials say the bike lane that was removed to provide parking for the Hilton hotel wasn’t really removed because it was never really a bike lane to begin with.

A retired Boston doctor encourages drivers to open their doors with their right hands to avoid dooring cyclists.

New York protected the security of the presidential candidates from bike riders by forcing the riders onto a busy highway at rush hour.

A Pennsylvania website says bicyclists face a life and death struggle for space on the state’s roads.

 

International

Ottawa officials say it’s okay that bike lanes on a newly opened bridge are too narrow to meet official guidelines, because they’re not really bike lanes. Evidently, they’ve been talking with the people in Cleveland.

It only took 120 years to get a bike lane on one Toronto street.

The Guardian looks at the Rails to Trails movement in the UK, where abandoned rail lines are being turned into world class biking and walking trails.

Curbed introduces Amsterdam’s first Bike Mayor, elected as an unofficial representative for the city’s bicyclists.

Apparently Belgrade, Serbia fails to make the grade when it comes to being bike friendly.

A new report says Adelaide, Australia isn’t ready for bikeshare because of its immature bikeway network, mandatory helmet law and crushing car culture. Los Angeles can cop to two out of three.

An Aussie writer calls for a network of segregated cycle routes to replace painted bike lanes, augmented by a network of shared quietways where cars don’t own the roads. Which sounds a lot like the apparently forgotten Bicycle Friendly Streets called for in LA’s Mobility Plan.

 

Finally…

Bicycling may be good for your health, but good sex may kill you. Seriously, if you’re already on probation for drug charges and carrying an “unknown white substance” on your bike, don’t ride on the damn sidewalk.

And just in time to beat the Halloween rush, a bicycle on a kickstand pedals itself, both forward and back, with no one but the camera around.

Morning Links: Surprising stats on CA bike crashes, and unarmed bike rider shot by sheriff’s deputies in Castaic

LA County is by far the most dangerous place in California to ride a bicycle.

Or maybe not.

Following up on his brief look at national bicycling crash stats, Ed Ryder is back with a more detailed look at bicycle injuries and fatalities on a countywide basis in California, from 2004 to 2016. And the results are both exactly what you might expect, and very surprising, depending on how you look at the data.

The good news is, bicycling fatalities dropped slightly in 2014, following a steady upward climb from 2009 to 2013, while injuries continue a gradual decline from a peak in 2012.

State Report 1

Not surprisingly, Los Angeles, as the state’s most populous county, led the way with 41% of bicycling injuries, followed by Orange and San Diego Counties.

State Report 2

The same held true for bicycling fatalities, as Southern California counties dominate the stats, led by Los Angeles at 30%, followed by Orange, Riverside, San Diego and San Bernardino.

State Report 3

However, the surprise comes when you look at injuries and fatalities on a per capita basis.

When Ryder examined the rate of injuries per one million population, he found that Los Angeles County barely made the top ten, coming in just above the state average. Santa Cruz County led the way, followed by San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Marin and Yolo.

State Report 4

When he looked at the rate of fatalities per one million population, Los Angeles didn’t even make the top ten. It turns out that Stanislaus County is actually California’s deadliest place to ride a bicycle, followed by Tulare, Sacramento and San Joaquin Counties. However, Southern California was still well represented with Riverside, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange Counties making the list.

State Report 5

So what exactly does this mean?

It could be more evidence of the safety in numbers effect, as you’re more likely to be injured in less populated counties.

Or the low death rate could be evidence of lower average speeds and better access to emergency care in Los Angeles County.

But the main thing it shows it that too many people are still getting injured or killed on our streets.

And we need to keep fighting until the last person killed riding a bicycle in California really is the last person killed riding a bike.

You can read the full report on California bicycling injuries and fatalities here.

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Questions are being raised after LA sheriff’s deputies shot an unarmed bike rider in Castaic Tuesday night.

The victim, a homeless man named William Bowers, reportedly jumped off his bike and tried to flee on foot as the officers chased him. He was shot when he allegedly reached for something in his waistband.

However, a witness says he was just walking down the street, after crashing his bike when deputies ordered him to stop, and had his hands down at his side when they opened fire.

The Times says it was unclear why the officers tried to stop him in the first place.

Local residents said the victim was well-known in the area. And despite suffering from drug problems, he never caused any trouble, though he did have a habit of trying to get away from deputies on his bike.

It wasn’t that long ago that shooting an unarmed man was enough to cost an officer his badge.

Now the accusation that someone reached for his waistband is enough to exonerate a cop.

Even if the victim was just trying to hold up his pants.

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Cyclelicious takes a deep dive into the Caltrans/UCLA report on bicycle crashes in LA County. If you don’t have the time or patience to dig through the full 97-page report, he offers an excellent summary of the key details.

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Bike SGV is hosting a used bike sale today through Saturday.

Bike SGV Used Bike Sale

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Defending silver medalist Lizzie Armistead insists she’s clean as she prepares to lead Britain’s cycling team into the Rio Olympics; she claims the missed drug tests weren’t her fault. Although missing three drug tests in 12 months does not exactly inspire confidence; after the repeated denials from Lance, Floyd, et al, it’s hard to believe anyone who denies doping these days.

Bicycling gets in the mood for Rio with five crazy moments in Olympic cycling history.

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Local

Metro votes to put the transportation tax increase, including funding for bike and pedestrian projects, on the November ballot.

KPCC’s Air Talk discusses the new law requiring temporary plates on newly purchased vehicles, which should help identify hit-and-run drivers.

CiclaValley continues his report on the ten most essential climbs in the LA area.

There will be a fundraiser this Saturday for bike shop owner Josef Bray-Ali’s grass roots effort to unseat anti-bike CD1 City Councilmember Gil Cedillo, aka Roadkill Gil.

Covina police arrest a burglary suspect who fled by bicycle after breaking a car window and stealing a purse.

The host of Tom Explores Los Angeles will explore the history of Santa Monica later this month with a tour that’s part walking and part bikeshare.

 

State

Mind the letter of the law in OC this weekend, where sheriff’s deputies will be enforcing traffic violations involving drivers, pedestrians and cyclists, in the latest effort to improve safety for the latter two.

Exclusive La Jolla may get a few docking stations for San Diego’s bikeshare system whether they want it or not. Meanwhile, a La Jolla man has discovered the alleys of the community because he’s not comfortable riding his bike on the street.

The madness continues in Coronado, as a letter writer says a proposed bike and pedestrian bridge would just bring more transients. Because evidently homeless people can’t figure out how to take the ferry, or follow the bike path around the bay to the strange little town.

A suspected Palm Springs car thief fleeing from the CHP on a bicycle suffered minor injuries when he allegedly swerved left into the patrol car that was driving right beside him. Sure, that’s credible; a suicide swerve makes much more sense than the cops cutting him off with their car to stop him.

Congratulations to Bakersfield on 29 new bouncing baby bike racks.

Bay Area advocates are pushing for a bike and pedestrian bridge over an estuary near Jack London Square.

An Oakland man was shot in a bike-jacking. Seriously, if someone has a weapon, just let them have the damn bike. No bicycle is worth your life.

 

National

A new Streetfilm says building an equitable bikeshare system is possible.

A man and his dog traveling cross-country by bike were both banged up when their rear wheel “exploded” while riding in South Dakota.

A group of Columbus OH cyclists will ride in purple tutus this weekend to honor a friend who died of leukemia.

A bicyclist slammed into a pedestrian in New York on Wednesday. Notice how no one ever seems to suggest that it might not have been the rider’s fault in cases like this, even though the pedestrian was jaywalking.

A New York study shows protected bike lanes reduce bicyclist and pedestrian injuries and fatalities at intersections by a whopping 53%. Despite claims by some that protected lanes would leave riders more vulnerable at intersections.

A Pennsylvania bike rider offers seven reasons not to hit a bike rider with your car. Reason #8: I know a lot of good lawyers.

The coaching staff of the Washington Redskins commute to training camp by bicycle, despite what they describe as a wild ride dodging car doors and riding salmon.

She gets it. A Charleston SC columnist says it’s time to stop bitching about traffic caused by a bike lane on a bridge, and focus on building a community that serves and protects all people, not just the ones in cars.

An off-duty Charleston cop has been charged with assault and battery following a fight with a salmon cyclist; the officer resigned while the case was under investigation.

A pair of Hilton Head SC thieves stole a pickup from a driveway, and left a bicycle in its place. Sounds like the owner of the truck may have gotten the better end of the deal.

 

International

Cycling Weekly explores the eternal question of what’s the right tire pressure.

If you build it, they will like it. Saskatoon, Canada residents are happy with a pilot bike lane network in the downtown area, even if it leaves a lot to be desired.

A Welsh woman was killed when she rode off a the edge of a ravine in the Pyrenees while cycling in a heavy fog.

Brit commenters argue over who’s at fault when video surfaces of a bike rider getting right hooked as he overtakes a taxi, whose driver failed to signal. So why does it have to be one or the other? Isn’t it just possible that both of them might have contributed to the situation?

An 81-year old Pakistani man is scraping by as a Lahore rickshaw driver after being hailed as a hero when he competed for the country as a cyclist in the 1960 and 1964 Olympics.

Caught on video: A bike-riding Kiwi mail carrier goes out of his way to get a few licks from a nine-month old German Shepherd.

Malaysian authorities raided the country’s cycling officials after accusations of substandard tracks and a lack of safety barriers during the recent Malaysia Games, even though funds had been allocated for the courses.

 

Finally…

No, really. It’s okay if you blow that red light, because you’re just following the rules of calories. How to tell if you’re a Fred.

And yes, you can cart a caribou carcass by bicycle.

 

Morning Links: Bikeshare safer than cycling, challenging LA’s stupidest bike lane, and re-striping Washington Blvd

It was a busy weekend in the bike world.

So get comfortable. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover.

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Evidently, bikeshare is safer than other forms of bicycling.

According to a new study, not one person has been killed while using a bikeshare bike anywhere in the US, with over 35 million rides in at least 94 systems.

And despite the overwhelming lack of helmet use.

That compares with an estimated fatality rate of 21 deaths per 100 million bicycling trips. Which means statistically, we could have expected at least seven bikeshare deaths so far. And there hasn’t been.

Among other factors, the study credits the heavy, slow bikes typical of bikeshare, and the fact that bikeshare trips are usually taken in urban areas where traffic tends to move slower.

Though there are exceptions.

My take is that in addition to being heavy, most bikeshare bikes are made with a step-through design, which makes them easy to jump off of in the event of danger or a fall.

Hopefully that track record will continue as bikeshare begins to spread through the LA area.

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Maybe we need a tape measure.

Streetsblog discovers a one-block long bike lane in Pleasanton that they say may be the shortest bike lane in California; a city official admits that yes, it’s short, but it’s a little better than nothing.

Don’t send the trophy up to the Bay Area yet, though.

It was just eight years ago when Slate declared a one-block long bike lane on Galey in Westwood the Stupidest Bike Lane in America.

A title it should hold on to, even if Pleasanton’s measures out a little shorter.

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My spies tell me the lane markers have all been stripped out on Washington Blvd between the Marina and Sepulveda Blvd, apparently so the lanes can be realigned, with the existing bike lanes extended all the way to Sepulveda.

Let’s hope the lanes are being moved to make room for a buffer. Or better yet, protected lanes.

After all, the new protected lanes on Venice look pretty comfy. Maybe once LA drivers get used to the ide, we can turn those bollards into planters.

Thanks to Margaret for the tip.

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bikesbelongposterIn a piece that should be mandatory reading for everyone in the bicycle industry, British bike scribe and historian Carlton Reid says if bike makers and sellers want the bicycle market to grow, spending on advocacy is an investment, not an expense.

Many of the current crop of unpaid promoters of our products are burning the candle at both ends, working tirelessly in their free time to get more people on bicycles. With substantial financial and moral support these advocates could truly work wonders. It’s shocking, really, that the industry stays largely aloof from such a passionate and committed volunteer army. (Bikes Belong in the US, and the Cycling Industry Club initiative from the European Cyclists’ Federation are stand-out examples of how the worlds of advocacy and the industry can meet in the middle.)

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April Fools Day came and went. And as usual, it didn’t leave the bike world out.

Streetsblog says LA’s Great Streets will now be named after the councilmembers whose districts they’re in, which means Koretz and Cedillo will have their names permanently attached to failed streets they’ve made. We could only wish that one was true.

West Hollywood comes up with a brilliant name for their coming bikeshare system — Bikey McBikeface.

Cyclocross Magazine says the 19-year old Belgian motor-doper is making a comeback at the Sea Otter Classic’s e-mountain bike race.

How about a bike helmet that doubles as a pour-over coffee maker?

And Google launches a self-driving bicycle in the Netherlands. Although that may not be as much of a joke as they seem to think.

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Lots of news from the racing world this weekend.

Slovakian pro Peter Sagan won Belgian’s Tour of Flanders on Sunday, overcoming a string of second-place finishes to claim his first Monument.

Meanwhile, a team mechanic became the latest person to be struck by a race vehicle when he was run down by an Etixx-QuickStep team car; no word on whether he was injured.

A writer for the Guardian says the death of Belgian pro cyclist Antoine Demoitié in a collision with a race moto — 66 years after a French rider suffered the same fate — should be a wake-up call for pro cycling’s overly crowded races. This crap is going to continue until race vehicles are required to remain behind the peloton. If a rider suffers a mechanical, he — or she — can wait until the peloton has passed, or just fix himself like the great riders of the past.

British world champ Lizzie Armitstead won the women’s Tour of Flanders in a photo-finish sprint to claim her fourth major victory of the year.

Eleven-time British world champ Anna Meares still suffers pain, eight years after she went from a wheelchair to the Olympic podium in just eight months following a bad fall while competing in Los Angeles.

A Taiwanese amateur cyclist feels the need, the need for speed, while an Aussie woman prepares to compete in triathlon at the Rio Paralympics just 18 months after taking up the sport — and despite being born with just one hand.

And a London doctor claims that he helped dope 150 athletes, including unnamed top British Tour de France cyclists; the Telegraph says a 39-year old amateur cyclist rolled over on the doc to get a reduced sentence from doping authorities.

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Local

Councilmember David Ryu’s staff continues to study the Rowena Ave road diet.

Streetsblog suggest supporting the inaugural Los Angeles Bicycle Festival on Kickstarter, while Bike Talk talks with LABF founder Nona Varnardo, as well as our friend and frequent linkee Richard Risemberg.

No bias here. A Santa Monica paper says a cyclist was arrested riding salmon while carrying burglary tools in a hot spot for break-ins. Chances are, they would never refer to the alleged thief as a motorist or pedestrian in the headline under similar circumstances.

The blog post may have come out on April 1st, but it’s no joke that Santa Monica’s Breeze bikeshare is ready for the opening of the Expo Line and all the people it will bring looking for a way to explore the city or travel the last few blocks to their destination.

 

State

San Diego’s Downtown News looks at opposition to the city’s bike and pedestrian plan for the downtown area.

The 32nd annual Redlands Bicycle Classic starts this Wednesday, while fans of vintage bicycles will want to turn out for Paso Robles’ annual three-day Eroica California starting this Friday.

A self-righteous Clovis letter writer says cyclists have to stop being self-righteous and “assume responsibility for the proper use of their toys.” Yes, toys.

San Francisco’s People Behaving Badly reporter goes looking for bicyclists with earbuds in both ears. Nice to know they’ve solved all the other safety problems in Bagdad by the Bay.

A writer from New Jersey outs himself and his family as a few of those tourists on rental bikes that people in Sausalito claim are ruining their fair city; no such objections seem to have arisen from their ride through Yosemite, though.

Marin sheriff’s deputies will be lying in wait for the rogue one percent of mountain bikers who exceed the 15 mph speed limit on county trails.

A Fairfield driver faces DUI charges for running down a drunk salmon cyclist; he told police he’d supported his two-gram-a-day habit by using meth 30 times that day before getting behind the wheel.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on how to climb hills.

The Christian Science Monitor explains the benefits of bicycling attire, especially for long rides. Seriously, you don’t need spandex to enjoy your ride, but it does make a difference.

After high-stakes gambler Dan Bilzerian won his $1.2 million bet by riding from LA to Vegas in less than 48 hours, the New York post calls him the biggest jerk on Instagram. Judging by the little I’ve seen of his fascination for guns and boobs, you won’t get any argument from me.

Las Vegas police stopped the driver of an off-road vehicle but somehow let him go, just one hour before he killed a bicyclist while driving under the influence.

A Boulder CO company acts like a legal chop shop by breaking down bikes and selling the parts on eBay.

A Colorado city will vote Tuesday on whether to require bicyclists to ride single file through town, despite a state law allowing cyclists to ride two abreast.

In a horrifying hit-and-run reminiscent of the crash that nearly took the life of Finish the Ride founder Damian Kevitt, a Texas woman survives after being dragged several blocks under a truck as the driver fled the scene. But unlike the jerk who ran down Kevitt, this driver was found and arrested, held on a $100,000 bond and an immigration detainer. Thanks to Steve Katz for the heads-up.

Thanks to a Michigan company, your next bike may have a spring instead of a down tube.

Great piece from the Washington Post refuting five myths about bicycling. Although I’d quibble with the suggestion that it wouldn’t make much of a dent in congestion even if more people rode bikes.

A North Carolina cyclist thanks the driver who said her tire was flat, and drove home to get an air compressor to fix it.

 

International

Bike Radar lists seven rookie mistakes that could ruin your ride to work.

Chances are, you sit on something made by the most powerful woman in cycling every time you ride.

An anti-bike British lawyer says police are ignoring law-breaking cyclists, to which nearly everyone else says au contraire.

A new study says Brits support bike lanes across virtually all age and political groups, even if it means a longer commute.

Caught on video: A British bike rider tries to pass a bus. And fails.

Protected bike lanes come to Belfast, though drivers don’t seem to get it yet.

A new bike tour takes tourists on a post-midnight ride through the streets of Mumbai. Now that sounds like fun.

A Maltese cyclist says animals get more respect than bike riders; “No one honks at a horse, but cyclists are often harassed.”

An Australian website says the risk of riding in large cities is extremely low, while the individual and social benefits are high.

 

Finally…

When you crash your car while driving under the influence with a suspended license while carrying drug paraphernalia and prescription meds, “borrowing” a bike to make your getaway may not be the best idea. Now you can print your own parts for an ugly ass ebike.

And good luck selling this stolen bike.

 

Morning Links: Entrada Drive to get a little narrower, a call for safer driving, and your next bike may not need you

Are bicyclists about to lose their place on Entrada Drive?

Cyclist Guy Seay forwards notice of a plan to install a much needed sidewalk on Entrada Drive as it winds along the hillside between Santa Monica and Los Angeles on its way to the coast.

Entrada Notice

But as he points out, the plan calls for narrowing the roadway three feet, potentially taking up the excess space that keeps slow moving riders — as shown in this short video — from having to take the lane in front of drivers headed up the short, steep hill.

It couldn’t hurt to slow drivers down, going uphill and down; I’ve frequently had to dodge drivers who take the corner too fast. And narrowing the roadway could do that.

But lets hope they’ve taken the needs of the many bike riders who use that route to connect the bike lanes on San Vicente Blvd with PCH and the beachfront bike path into account, as well.

Update: A comment from Mark, who lives near Entrada, says he’s been involved in the planning process, and that there will be room for bikes in both directions after the project is finished. 

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Local

The wife of a South Bay cyclist asks drivers to remember that the bike rider in the lane ahead of them is someone’s husband, wife or child, and thanks an LAX cop for taking it on himself to keep riders safe.

The Hollywood Reporter reviews the new documentary about the Eastside’s own Ovarian Psychos Bicycle Brigade as it premiers at South by Southwest.

The LACBC wants you to nominate someone to join their diversity team as a supported rider for this year’s Climate Ride.

 

State

Local residents complain about the planned location of an Ojai bike park, citing the possibility of noise and yes, the loss of parking. Because cars are more important than giving kids a safe place to ride, right?

A San Francisco columnist crawls inside Lance Armstrong’s brain by moderating a conversation with America’s greatest ex-Tour de France winner, and says Hamlet, Othello and Macbeth had nothing on him.

A Marin columnist says the solution to Bay Area traffic congestion is to not give people any alternatives to driving, by voting against all regional measures, as well as politicians who support an admittedly expensive bikeway across the Bay Bridge.

Two Sausalito woman are under arrest for a drunken hit-and-run that injured a cyclist; they stopped their minivan a few miles away to switch seats in an apparent attempt to cover up who was behind the wheel, even though police say they were both under the influence.

When a writer says Portland should use it for a role model for bicycling, you know Davis is doing something right.

 

National

A writer with the Frontier Group says bicycling isn’t the answer to global warming, but it can be a tool for transformation to lead cities toward the next steps in de-carbonization.

Tucson cyclists are reporting near misses to collect data to improve safety.

So much for that bill requiring Iowa drivers to change lanes to pass bicyclists; it died in a legislative committee, even though 70% of Iowans support the measure.

A Philadelphia professor says it’s time for drivers to stop treating bicyclists like vehicles, and start treating them like they would pedestrians.

Will Smith is one of us, at least in his new movie shooting now in the Big Apple.

 

International

More anti-bike terrorism, as someone booby trapped an English bike path by stringing barbed wire at neck level.

Welshman Geraint Thomas is the winner of this year’s Paris-Nice stage race, beating Alberto Contador by just four seconds.

An 87-year old Spanish driver is under arrest for slamming his SUV into a group of cyclists without stopping, then driving on to a nearby restaurant where he finally reported the wreck.

An Australian bicycling group develops a code of etiquette to encourage cyclists to ride “impeccably” so they won’t piss off motorists and pedestrians. Which of course says nothing about drivers who can’t seem to see the rider in the lane directly in front of them, let alone what can be done about it.

Not even Superman uses a phone booth anymore. So Thailand is converting them to bike repair stations.

Bicycle tourism is bringing benefits to the people and economy of an Indonesian island.

 

Finally…

Apparently, a bicycle makes an effective getaway vehicle if you’re going to steal an electric guitar from a Chinatown music shop. So if bike counters are triggered by the metal of a passing bike, does that mean riders on carbon and bamboo bikes don’t count?

And who needs a bike rider when your e-bike can ride itself?

 

Morning Links: Don’t confront angry drivers, salmon cyclist injured in Boyle Heights, near miss in OC, and CicLAvia!

Some stories are just too outrageous for words.

That was the case with yesterday’s murder of a bicyclist by a road-raging SUV driver who fled the scene after running down the victim near Expo Park following an argument.

We won’t rehash the whole story here.

But it serves as a tragic reminder that you never know who you’re dealing with on the roads. And if you encounter an angry driver, it’s better not to engage if possible.

Just pull over, and let them go on their way. A lesson I learned the hard way, after bouncing off the bumper of a road raging driver when I made the mistake of responding to her anger with a single raised finger.

Rule #1: Never flip off the driver behind you.

If they come after you, try to ride to a public place. Take your bike into a store if you need to.

Make a public display of calling 911, or ask witnesses to call the police.

I’ve also found that taking a photo of the driver and the license of the vehicle with your smartphone will diffuse most situations. Although pointing out that you’re recording everything on your helmet cam seems to have the opposite effect.

Try to speak calmly. Don’t yell or get into a shouting match. Just find a way to get out of the situation as quickly and painlessly as possible.

I don’t mean to preach.

That advice is a reminder for me as much as it is for you or anyone else.

I’ve got a long history of standing my ground and fighting for my right to the road through words and gestures. Even going so far as to block offending drivers with my bike and body, and shoving car doors closed to keep drivers or passengers from getting out and kicking my ass.

I’ve somehow managed to get away it. Except for that one time.

But as that case and this one make clear, it’s just not worth the risk.

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A salmon cyclist suffered major injuries in a head-on collision in Boyle Heights Monday night.

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A drunk driver lost control of his car and went off PCH in Huntington Beach, coming to rest in the sand; the driver and a passenger were arrested trying to flee on foot.

A friend reports she would have been passing through that exact spot at the time of the crash as she rode her bike home along the beach, if she hadn’t stopped to watch the lightening display and ended up talking with a driver who’d pulled over to watch, as well.

It’s funny how often little things like that can make all the difference in getting home safely.

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CicLAvia returns to the scene of the crime for the fifth anniversary of the original Heart of Downtown event.

Speaking of which, the Militant Angeleno is back with his epic guide to Sunday’s CicLAvia route. Seriously, you need to memorize this, print it or download it to your phone before you head out on Sunday.

And there will be a feeder ride to CicLAvia from Culver City.

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In pro cycling, the Tinkoff-Saxo cycling team is now just Tinkoff, as the team lost Saxo Bank after eight years of sponsorship.

And it’s not just the riders facing a doping ban anymore, as USA Cycling extends a zero tolerance policy to its staff and contractors.

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Local

The Alliance for Community Transit is hiring an Organizing Coordinator, and a Campaign and Communications Coordinator. And they’ll be hosting a community event in Grand Park on Monday to discuss what a sustainable, transit-rich LA could look like.

Jimmy Kimmel gives a non-bicycling staff writer a bike riding lesson behind his Hollywood studio.

Great news from the Valley, as design work begins for another 12 miles of bike paths along the LA River. Although the story doesn’t say if it will connect with the existing LA River bike path.

CiclaValley says Metro has plans for a bigger, bolder, and hopefully more bikeable NoHo. Let’s hope those plans include the long promised Lankershim bike lanes that were squashed by the unlamented Tom LaBonge.

It’s official. South Pasadena will host the second stage of next year’s Amgen Tour of California.

Long Beach needs volunteers for its eighth annual bike count on Sunday, which unfortunately takes place the same time as CicLAvia.

 

State

A Huntington Beach bicyclist suffered critical injuries when he was rear-ended while riding in the bike lane on Warner Ave.

Newly bike friendly San Diego is ranked as the 12th greenest city in the US.

A Santa Cruz writer plays Miss Manners for mountain bikers for a day.

San Francisco cyclists have an interesting new transportation option, as they can now lease a $2000 e-bike for $79 a month, including a lock, theft insurance and unlimited maintenance.

A Rancho Cordova cyclist is lucky to survive a collision with a light rail train.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Granite Bay man celebrated his 90th birthday by riding his 200,000th mile on his bike. By my calculations, I only have somewhere around 18,000 miles and a few more decades to go.

 

National

Microsoft is working on predictive intelligence to prevent bicycle collisions before they happen. Except when they have to reboot the system, download and install upgrades or fight off a virus, that is.

CNET looks at the growing popularity and expanding choices in e-bikes.

Next City offers eight images and videos it says will make you fall more in love with bikeshare.

A new Portland apartment building is only 80% leased, but the bike parking is already overflowing.

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho police are looking for a hit-and-run cyclist who plowed into a jogger after calling “on your left,” then not doing it.

The driver who nearly killed a Denver bike cop who was protecting protesting high school students faces up to nine years in prison after pleading guilty to vehicular assault; he lied about an existing medical condition when he applied for a drivers license.

An Arkansas county sobriety court has started their own bikeshare program — actually more of a bike library — to provide transportation for drivers who’ve had their licenses suspended for DUI.

The Minneapolis StarTribune talks with Stephen Clark, the bicycle-friendly community program specialist for the League of American Bicyclists.

Evidently, not everyone loves Detroit’s Slow Roll Bike Rides.

A New York truck driver was high on coke when he killed a cyclist in an apparent right hook.

The NYPD doesn’t just think bike lanes are for parking, they’re also a dump for precinct garbage.

A Brooklyn paper offers a by the numbers look at bicycling in the borough.

City Lab says that DC church’s claimed opposition to bike lanes for religious freedom is really all about free parking. Oddly, I don’t recall Jesus saying anything about being able to park right in front of a house of worship.

 

International

City and state governments around the world are finally using data to harness the benefits of the bicycling boom.

Two Winnipeg men are under arrest for attacking a car after the right-turning driver had hit a bike rider as she came off the sidewalk.

A Toronto writer reflects on the intersection of bicycling and jazz, including a hair-raising ride from Hollywood to attend a recording session in Studio City with the great Lee Ritenour, aka Captain Fingers. I’ve often thought riding through traffic felt like a jazz improvisation, as you slide in and out of ever expanding and collapsing spaces, speeding up and slowing down with the flow around you.

The UK’s Cycling Weekly offers advice on winter riding, some of which actually applies in sunny Los Angeles.

Horrifying crime from Austria, as four masked men push a bike rider to the ground and carve a swastika into his forehead.

A commuter in Malta tried five different forms of transportation before concluding that riding a bike was the most efficient way to get to work.

A Singapore judge suggests cracking down on rash cycling with jail time or a fine up to the equivalent of $1800.

Aussie cops take the country’s mandatory helmet law to a ridiculous extreme by fining a helmet-wearing woman $70 because her strap wasn’t tight enough.

Only in Japan would separated bike lanes be intended to protect cyclists from pedestrians instead of cars.

 

Finally…

If you’re carrying a knife, sawed-off shotgun, drugs and trafficking paraphernalia, don’t ride on the sidewalk and put a damn bell on your bike. If you’re hiding a meth pipe on your bike, maybe it’s better not to ride with a .22-caliber rifle strapped to it.

And it may be smart, it may be electric, it may be a foldie, but if it doesn’t have pedals, it’s a freaking scooter, not a bike.

 

Weekend Links: Bikes vs Cars, weekend events, a dangerous intersection and good news from Newport Beach

You really don’t want to drive to see Bikes vs Cars, do you?

The documentary is screening in a free outdoor showing Sunday night at the Bowtie Project as part of the Ambulante Film Festival.

There will be a free bike valet, and at least three feeder rides, starting from North Hollywood, Exposition Park/USC, Glendale and El Sereno Parkett.

………

A few other notable events this weekend.

The SoCalCross Prestige Series: SCOS2 Krosstoberfest cyclocross races roll in Long Beach’s El Dorado Park today.

Update: Bike SGV is hosting a free, family-friendly Ride to the Twenties Festival at the Workman Homestead Museum Saturday afternoon. My apologies for not mentioning this earlier.

The LACBC’s Sunday Funday Ride rolls through Pasadena this Sunday.

Metro’s Rideshare Week starts Sunday.

And on the 10th, women are invited to join Hrach and the Velo Studio crew for a gentle road ride through Griffith Park.

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Margaret Wehbi sends word of a dangerous intersection at 135th St and La Cienega Blvd in the Wiseburn section of unincorporated LA County, near Hawthorne, where a young girl was hit by a car while riding to school.

She adds that the person who posted the notice dictated her comments, and apologized for the errors.

Screen Shot 2015-09-30 at September 30, 2015 15.25.00

Apparently, the girl suffered a broken growth plate, and will be in a sling for awhile. And both she and her mother have been traumatized by the incident.

………

Good news from Newport Beach, as a 14-year old girl who was the victim of a hit-and-run while riding her bike has made a full recovery.

Meanwhile, the driver turned himself in, and could face up to a year in jail and a fine of as much as $10,000.

Although I always question whether hit-and-run drivers who come forward a day or two later just gave themselves enough time to sober up.

Thanks to Amy Senk for the heads-up.

………

A writer for Sky News celebrates Peter Sagan’s victory at the world’s last week, saying the people’s champion is now the world champion.

World cyclocross champ Mathieu van der Poel is out for the foreseeable future after surgery for a knee injury suffered in an August crash.

And a car racing tour steals a page from bike racing’s book by introducing a team time trial.

………

Local

Better Bike’s Mark Elliot calls for traffic mitigation to protect the safety of bicyclists during the reconstruction of Santa Monica Blvd.

A letter writer in the Times says while 11-year old Matty Grossman wants a safe place to ride his bike, her son can’t walk home from school because of the cut-through traffic caused by the Rowena road diet.

LADOT Bike Blog looks at the new California laws to establish traffic diversion schools for bicyclists and a hit-and-run yellow alert system.

Caught on video: CiclaValley watches the owner of H & S bike shops climb the Hollywood Hills wheelie well.

Campus police bust a bike thief at Cal State Northridge on Friday.

Santa Monica’s new Breeze bikeshare system is still on track for a November rollout; the initial test system has proved popular enough that it will be extended past the planned October 1st end date.

Any Hermosa Beach city council candidate who poses for a campaign photo on a fat tire beach bike can’t be all bad.

Get your resume ready. Bike-friendly Long Beach is looking for an assistant city traffic engineer.

 

State

A writer for the Contra Costa Times says too much blood of bicyclists has been spilled on Mt. Diablo. Apparently, drivers have to receive a verbal warning because they don’t have enough sense not to pass on blind curves.

A Palo Alto road diet has won over the city’s skeptics, and will be made permanent after a successful trial phase. Installing road diets on streets like Rowena and North Figueroa on a trial basis could help overcome opposition here, while identifying issues that need to be addressed.

Modesto will conduct a year-long, nearly $300,000 traffic safety campaign, including a focus on bike and pedestrian safety.

 

National

Census data shows bike commuting continues to rise across the US as city’s build more bikeways; Los Angeles is up to 1.3%. However, census data dramatically undercounts the number of transportation cyclists, since it doesn’t include multi-modal commuters who bike part way or people who bike to shop or other destinations.

Talk about a miraculous recovery. A Wisconsin woman turned up at a police station to ask for her bike back after she had been declared brain dead and sent to another hospital as an organ donor.

A Minnesota writer rides with a bike messenger and learns being late is the cardinal sin of the business, even if that means getting back on your bike with a broken hand after flying over the car that cut you off.

Battle Creek MI police conclude no one was at fault for the wreck that killed a cyclist. Except for whoever was responsible for maintaining the crumbling asphalt that caused him to fall in front of a 15-year old driver.

A Harlem bicyclist sues UPS for repeatedly parking in the bike lanes. The same suit could be filed over delivery trucks blocking the bike lanes on Ocean and San Vicente in Santa Monica.

A 25-year old New York teacher who worked with disadvantaged children is honored as a Hometown Hero in Education; sadly, the award came two months after he was killed while riding cross country to raise money for the charity Bike and Build.

A New York writer says NYC cyclists might not have Boulder CO’s 300 miles of off-road pathways, but they enjoy the excitement of riding in the city. And instead of signs warning about puma attacks, they might have to dodge a rat or two.

City Lab looks at the benefits of slower traffic as measured in terms of both money and lives; a New Jersey road diet penciled out at a net benefit of between $2.6 million and $37 million over the 20-year lifespan of the project.

Maybe someone’s trying to tell them something. After a 7,000 rider strong charity ride was pushed back by the papal visit, it’s cancelled after heavy rains and fears of Hurricane Joaquin result in a state of emergency.

Nice. A Pennsylvania sheriff is placing signs reminding drivers of the state’s four-foot passing law on popular bicycling routes.

 

International

Not every cyclist wants a carb-burning workout; a new Brit route planner currently under development promises to get you to your destination with the least amount of effort.

Now you, too, can ride the same bikes that carried the Royal Mail, albeit in a more elephant friendly hue.

Belfast will hold its first ciclovía on Sunday.

The husband of a fallen Dubai cyclist and elephant polo champ leads her former teammates in climbing 100 French passes in 10 days in her honor.

In the latest example of wealthy Arabs behaving badly, a Mercedes driver is wanted in his native United Arab Emirates for a massive, choke-inducing burnout after arguing with a London cyclist.

 

Finally…

It’s never too soon to learn the ABCs of bicycling. Who needs an e-bike when your dogs can do all the work for you?

And the next time you rob a gas station, try using a mask instead of a trash bag over your head before making your escape by bike.

 

Morning Links: Cedillo condemns calls for safer streets, Coronado madness round 3, and more bighearted people

One person’s political gain is another’s plea for safer streets.

CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo sent an email saying it’s unacceptable to use the hit-and-run death of Irma Yolanda Espinoza-Lugo on North Figueroa for political gain.

Except that seems to be exactly what he’s doing.

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It’s sad that calling for safer streets in the wake of a needless tragedy is seen as a “political opportunity for personal gain.”

Especially since this wreck occurred on a stretch of North Figueroa that would have already undergone safety improvements if Cedillo hadn’t personally blocked them, despite overwhelming community support.

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It just keeps getting nuttier down in Coronado.

After banning a beach bike path because it would attract bike riding tourists, and halting planned bike lanes because they would introduce vertigo-inducing visual blight, residents are now going after proposed traffic lights for fear they will cause gridlock, noise and pollution, and forever change the city’s quiet, calm atmosphere.

Because that’s what traffic lights do, evidently.

………

Bighearted people continue to make the news.

A Kansas cop brought a homeless man to tears by giving him a bicycle from the department’s stash of unclaimed bikes, so the man wouldn’t have to walk several hours a day to his job.

And an anonymous donor replaced the bike stolen from a British Columbia teen after his was taken when he stopped at a 7-11.

………

Business Insider offers a close-up look at Peter Sagan’s $9,250 world championship winning Specialized S-Works Tarmac. Note to TMZ: That’s a “super expensive” bike, not this.

An Austrian cyclist who took a frightening spill during the U23 road race blames a broken steerer damaged when his bike flew off a support car during the time trial.

Cycling Weekly looks at the six Brits who have won the worlds, including this year’s road race champ Lizzie Armistead.

And both drivers and cyclists say better education is the key to building on the success of the worlds to make Richmond VA a safer place to ride a bike.

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Local

CiclaValley says Times’ columnist George Skelton’s call for a registration fee on bike riders is flat Earth thinking. Meanwhile, a Modesto rider says go ahead and bill him 60¢ for the wear and tear his bike causes on the roads.

The Los Ryderz bike club in Watts will ride for cancer awareness on Saturday, despite losing their tools and a pair of bikes in a break-in. This would be a good opportunity for some bighearted people right here in LA to step up and help replace them.

Friends have set up a gofundme page for a Long Beach bike rider who was seriously injured in a collision with a truck last week; the fund has raised $7,285 of the $10,000 goal in just five days. Thanks to John McBrearty for the heads-up.

A Bike League webinar will feature Daniella Alcedo from the LACBC’s Pomona Valley Bicycle Coalition and Maria Sipin of Multicultural Communities for Mobility this Thursday at 11 am.

Krosstoberfest comes to Long Beach this Saturday with the SoCalCross Prestige Series cyclocross races at El Dorado Park. I can almost hear the polka music and smell the muddy lederhosen already.

Celebrate Rideshare Week with a ride on the karaoke rickshaw October 5th through 9th.

 

State

A teenage bike rider was seriously injured in an Escondido collision after witnesses said he rode through a red light and into the path of an oncoming truck.

No bias here. A Banning newspaper says a Beaumont cyclist was injured after “driving” into a car, even though it says the driver didn’t see him. The driver must have left crossed the rider, since they were going in opposite directions on the same road.

Saturday’s Simi Valley Share the Road Ride will honor fallen cyclist Phil Hernandez, while calling attention to the need to make room for bicyclists; riders can choose courses from 25 to 100 miles.

The San Francisco Chronicle rejects the call for an Idaho stop law, saying road safety and established law trump the inconvenience of stopping for a stop sign. Meanwhile, after the city’s mayor threatened to veto the ordinance because he won’t trade safety for convenience, Streetsblog SF offers proof he does exactly that on a regular basis.

Bad enough that we have to worry about dangerous drivers; a Berkley bike rider was injured when a falling tree knocked down a power pole and he crashed into the fallen power line.

The bicyclist killed in a Yolo County time trial over the weekend was an experienced cyclist who worked as a consultant for Oracle. Police say both the victim and the driver appear to be at fault, since the driver passed unsafely while the victim wasn’t riding far to the right.

 

National

If you have a bike with disc brakes, there’s a good chance it may be on this recall list. Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the link.

A pair of filmmaking adventurers rescue an abandoned puppy while on a 900-mile bike trip to climb 45 towers in the Southwestern US.

There’s special place in hell for someone who would steal a pair of custom-made tricycles that provide mobility for a wheelchair-bound Portland woman.

City officials in Boulder CO vote to undo a road diet in the face of vitriolic criticism, even though it improved safety in the short amount of time it was allowed to exist; People for Bikes says it will be just the fourth protected bike lane removed anywhere in the US.

An Iowa man faces up to 25 years in prison for killing a bike rider taking part in a group ride; his BAC was nearly three times the legal limit at the time of the crash.

Opinions vary over a protected bike lane currently under construction in Chattanooga TN, even among bike riders. Instead of complaining about the loss of just 15 parking spaces, try installing a few bike racks to draw customers on two wheels.

A writer for the Wall Street Journal seems surprised he survived his first ride on one of New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare bike.

Philadelphians call for car-free weekends in the city center after the papal visit shows how nice the city could be with fewer cars.

A North Carolina man seems to be on a one-person crusade to have ghost bikes removed.

A Florida legislator re-files a vulnerable user law that would require drivers to yield to bike riders and pedestrians when making a right turn that crosses sidewalks, bicycle lanes or bicycle paths.

A crawling burglar in the Sunshine State somehow managed to steal 40 bikes and equipment worth $104,000 after disabling a bike shop’s security system. So if you start seeing a bunch of brand new bikes on Craigslist at ridiculously low prices…

 

International

Interesting collision data from the UK; not surprisingly, Mondays and morning rush hour are the most dangerous times for London bicyclists

Once again, bike riders are the good guys, as a pair of British paramedics drop out of a charity ride to help a woman injured in a car crash.

An Irish cyclist has his bike stolen after it carried him over 18,000 miles around the world; he was the only one of four competitors to finish last year’s World Cycle Race.

Wired says the recent car-free day in Paris shows what our cities can be.

A Danish study looks at the behavior of road users to determine the ideal width for two-way cycle tracks, concluding after a number of complex calculations that the magic number is 7.38 feet if there’s no parking, and 7.7 feet if there’s parking alongside the bike lanes.

Australia’s Victoria state has promised key bike projects, but failed to deliver. Sounds familiar.

 

Finally…

You too, can learn to pop a wheelie in just 35 easy lessons. For anyone unclear on the subject, throwing it through a restaurant window is not the proper use of your bicycle.

And that’s what I call a foldie, e-bike or otherwise.

 

Morning Links: Civility rules at Rowena town hall, and big active transportation bucks could be coming to LA County

For once, rationality rules the day.

By all reports, Monday’s town hall meeting to discuss the Rowena road diet was calm and productive, for a change. And without the usual anti-bike hysteria.

While there was some very vocal opposition to the road diet — with one couple calling it a living nightmare — support ran about two-thirds in favor, according to Streetsblog’s Joe Linton.

Most people were more concerned with improving safety and reducing cut-through traffic than giving the street back to speeding motorists. And many of the comments focused on the need for increased traffic enforcement to stop drivers from blowing through stop signs.

Yes, they do it, too. And pose a lot more risk to others than when people on bicycles do.

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Looks like good news for LA area bike and pedestrian projects.

Richard Masoner of Cyclelicious forwards word that 23 projects throughout LA County have received staff approval for funding through the state’s 2015 Active Transportation Program.

The projects, totaling nearly $73 million in state funding, range from an LAUSD middle school bike safety program and Safe Routes to Schools to various bikeway and walkway improvements and the planned Alameda Esplanade at Union Station.

The report cautions that final approval is still needed. But we could be seeing some big improvements in the not-too-distant future.

The next to last column on the right reflects the total cost of the project, in thousands, while the right-hand column is the amount requested, also in thousands.

The next to last column on the right reflects the total cost of the project, in thousands, while the right-hand column is the amount requested.

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Today’s common news theme: bikeshare.

The Baltimore Sun says the city’s new bikeshare program needs to get a lot bigger and cover more territory where reliable transit is needed most.

Philadelphia’s Indigo system is bringing affordable bikeshare to the masses.

Cincinnati’s Red Bike celebrates a successful first anniversary after surpassing projections.

Louisiana State University is the latest college to offer bikeshare to students and faculty; the system is free for the first two hours.

Bike Snob says New Yorkers are up in arms that a bikeshare station will be installed near a school play area, because who knows who it will attract. Like a somewhat less hairy Leonardo DiCaprio, for instance, who was caught riding with his entourage on blue Citi Bikes.

Amsterdam’s Yellow Backie, created by cycle hire company Yellow Bike, encourages locals to give tourists a lift on the bike’s luggage rack.

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Local law enforcement is ready for this weekend’s road cycling world championships in Richmond VA. The bike race season isn’t really over after the worlds; it just moves to Abu Dhabi next month.

Outside magazine looks at Utah’s Red Bull Rampage, calling it the most dangerous bike competition on Earth.

And an Italian-American website gushingly anoints the great Fausto Coppi “the finest, most elegant cyclist in the history of the sport.” Although fans of the Cannibal, among others, may beg to differ; Lance Armstrong fans need not apply.

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Local

A Santa Monica lawyer tries out the local VeloFix franchise offering mobile bike repair services. Although seriously, if you’re going to ride a bike, learn how to fix a flat.

Over 75 Glendale kids should be safer on their bicycles, thanks to a bike safety and skills workshop over the weekend.

An open house will be held Thursday evening to discuss the second phase of the Burbank Channel Bikeway.

Bike-riding former state assembly member Steve Bradford, who sponsored the first two attempts to create a three-foot passing law in California, lists some of the endorsements he’s received in his race for the state senate. Oddly, my name’s not on the list.

 

State

Nine cyclists set off from San Diego on a ride across the US to promote awareness of mental illness.

A bike-riding racist gets 13 years for beating an elderly Sikh man in Fresno, after apparently being unable to distinguish a Sikh from a Muslim. Either way, this is one bicyclist who won’t be missed.

Speaking of Cyclelicious, he offers heartbreaking images of the devastating Valley Fire that displaced 13,000 people from their homes as it swept through populated areas; the Northern California Red Cross is accepting donations, as is the Marin County Bicycle Coalition.

 

National

House Democrats stand firm in protecting US bike and pedestrian funding from cuts called for by the gas guzzling Koch brothers and their minions.

Streetsblog looks at how America came to accept such a staggering rate of traffic fatalities.

Great article from former Bicycling Editor in Chief Peter Flax, as he talks with the bike-riding stars of Breaking Away in advance of their appearance at Interbike.

Wired describes a new e-cargo bike from Xtracycle as the pickup truck of electric bikes.

Amtrak expands roll-on bike access, but only if you want to go from Chicago to DC, and pay a $20 fee.

Portlanders turn a bike ride into a call for peace in the community.

A Colorado writer who never takes his bike out of the garage somehow opposes a plan that would encourage others to take their bikes out of the garage; he fears slowing traffic and improving safety will kill the downtown area that drivers currently speed through.

San Antonio TX is the latest city to adopt a Vision Zero policy.

A bike racer is banged up after smashing into a truck that pulled onto the closed course for the Arkansas State Criterium Championship. Bystanders told the driver he couldn’t go around the barricades; he apparently proved them wrong.

A Chicago father pens an open letter to the My Little Pony bike he can’t seem to assemble for his daughter. One more reason to buy from your local bike shop; they’ll out it together for you.

Note to Vermont officials: It’s not really a complete street if you just narrow the traffic lanes to give bikes and pedestrians a whopping three feet of shared space on the side of the road.

New York’s alleycat races may attract sponsors, but they’re not exactly legal.

A Georgia writer insists that drivers are the real victims of those heartless, dangerous bike riders who force them to take their lives.

The prestigious Columbia Journalism Review looks at the efforts of the Fort Meyers News-Press to promote bike safety in the nation’s most dangerous state for bicyclists.

 

International

Toronto groups call for a vulnerable user law and making the streets safe for cyclists and pedestrians.

An English court upholds the one-year sentence for a BMX rider who killed a 73-year old woman while weaving his bike through pedestrians on a closed street.

Britain’s leading bike cam-wearing cyclist gets another driver fined, this time for using his phone while driving a bus; his videos have lead to the convictions of 70 motorists for traffic offenses.

A Welsh website offers tips on how to teach your kid to ride a bike in 10 easy steps. And no, wiping away tears and bandaging boo boos aren’t among them.

A Rwandan writer calls for more support for cycling in the country after a Team Rwanda rider wins gold at the All Africa Games.

A 22-year old reserve F1 driver won’t be racing for McLaren in Singapore this weekend after breaking his hand falling off a bike.

If you bought your Giro helmet from a Chinese website, it could be counterfeit; evidently, fake bike gear — or even high-end bikes — isn’t that unusual.

 

Finally…

Forget helmets, soon motorists will yell at you to wear your air bag-equipped flak jacket. Who needs hi-viz when you can have lights printed directly onto your clothes.

And smart glasses are coming to cycling. Wearing them, however, probably won’t make anyone a smarter rider.

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Thanks to Vincent Busam for his generous donation to help support this site. Donations of any amount are always appreciated.

Morning Links: Avoiding bike/car collisions, too much bike theft news, and new bike coffee shop in DTLA

Let’s see what you have to say.

I was forwarded a link to this website on how to avoid the 12 most common types of bicycle/vehicle accidents by one of the people who helped create it.

While it has some good advice, a few things jumped out at me. Like use of the term “accident,” for instance. And the stat saying 75% of collisions at controlled intersections are caused by bike riders going through stop signs.

Which sounds like the sort of victim blaming the CHP loves to indulge in. And makes me wonder just where they got their stats, since it’s not credited on the site.

But before I offer my opinion, I want to know what you think.

Just leave your thoughts in the comments below, and I’ll forward them to the person who sent it to me.

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Too much bike theft news today.

Bikes continue to disappear in DTLA, with six stolen in one recent week, including two from the Downtown library.

Santa Rosa police bust three bike rustlers with a bait bike.

After a Duluth boy’s bike was stolen off his porch, his mom tracks it down. And in the processes, uncovers a bicycle chop shop with 20 other stolen bikes.

A Dallas mom posts a hand-written notice saying some low-life made her seven-year old daughter cry by stealing her new bike.

A North Carolina writer offers advice on how not to get your bike stolen.

And it’s nice to have a big heart, and want to replace a kid’s stolen bike. But first, make sure you’re in the same town, and not another one with the same name 800 miles away.

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Chris Froome cracks following a crash on one of the toughest stages ever to grace a world tour, while Astana’s Mikel Landa takes the stage and Fabio Aru slips on the Vuelta leader’s jersey. And yet another rider is knocked out of the race by a collision with a motorbike.

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Local

Fascinating OpEd from a former New York traffic commissioner and engineer on LA’s new Mobility Plan, saying accessibility trumps mobility and increased congestion can be a good thing.

Flying Pigeon’s Rick Risemberg says the tide appears to be turning against CD1 Councilmember “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo, who is up for re-election in 2017.

Streetsblog says the promised community outreach is lacking on some of the city’s Great Streets, while Cesar Chavez Ave in Boyle Heights appears to be a test case for Vision Zero.

KPCC looks at the UCSF study saying hospital admissions due to bicycling injuries more than doubled over a 15 year period. Here’s my thoughts, in case you missed it yesterday.

A new bike shop/vintage-inspired hangout/specialty coffee destination called The Wheelhouse will be opening soon on 6th Street in DTLA’s Arts District.

 

State

A coalition calls on the state legislature to provide $600 million a year in transit funding, as well as making it safer and easier to bike and walk to transit.

Sorry, Orange County. No 2024 Olympic bike races for you.

Nice. An annual OC Bike Camp teaches children with disabilities how to ride bikes.

A cyclist suffered minor injuries in a left cross collision in Newport Beach Wednesday morning.

A 47-year old cyclist was killed while riding salmon in Modesto Wednesday evening, the second bicycling fatality in the city this week.

A writer for the SF Chronicle says Critical Mass is dying of self-inflicted wounds, in the city where it started but may not be needed anymore. Than again, it wasn’t his song that was playing in the background during the U-lock car bashing.

Turns out you don’t have to risk your life on busy highways to do a wine tour by bike; you can tour wineries in the Russian River Valley on a 5-1/2 mile off-road pathway.

 

National

Maybe a car isn’t the best place to raise your kids after all.

MTV discovers the art of artistic cycling.

A Washington man faces vehicular homicide and hit-and-run charges after running down a cyclist as she rode on the shoulder of a highway.

Colorado’s DOT quickly shelves a tasteless, victim-blaming pedestrian safety campaign.

Taking a page from LA’s playbook, Cheyenne WY paints new bike lanes, but doesn’t bother to fix the cracks and potholes first.

A Montana writer comes across a tense confrontation after two men in a Jeep threaten a pair of cyclists.

A Chicago writer applauds bike riders for taking cars off the roads. She just doesn’t want bikes on them, either. Or bike lanes. And thinks cyclists should all pass a test and carry a license plate because she’s quite sure none ever stop for traffic signals.

Like the writer above, readers of New York’s Daily News seem convinced bike riders are the problem. Because it can’t be the people in the big dangerous machines that kill over 30,000 people a year in the US, right?

A New Jersey man faces up to eight years in prison after pleading guilty to vehicular homicide in the hit-and-run death of a bicyclist; he faces a murder charge in another case.

Newark NJ parents are peeved that police have suddenly begun enforcing the city’s bike registration law. The LA city council repealed a similar law several years back after police used it as a pretext to stop, search and ticket bike riders.

The Baltimore Orioles honor Cal Ripken, Jr. for his 2,131 consecutive game streak, a day after he pulled an endo while riding his bike.

 

International

Former Calgary Flames pro hockey player Cory Sarich is looking for work 14 months after a horrific collision with a truck while riding his bike.

British advocates question why safety improvements made to London trucks to protect bicyclists shouldn’t be applied everywhere else. Good question.

London’s bike seat-melting office tower has been named Britain’s worst building for 2015.

There’s a special place in hell for anyone who’d steal a bike rider’s lights and wallet while he lay unconscious in the street after crashing his bike.

Dubai is planning the world’s largest indoor bike park, with nearly 9,000 square feet of trails, obstacles and walls built from recycled materials.

 

Finally…

Your next taillight could flash multi-colors and call for help in an emergency. Cycling caps move from hipster fashion statement to haute couture on the catwalk. Full disclosure, I own three myself; I don’t know if that makes me a hipster or a fashion model.

And a new British e-bike appears to be a 20 mph cross between a recumbent and an egg.

 

Morning Links: New study says bike injuries increasing, but without context; comedian rants riding through LA

Another study attempts to paint bicycling as a dangerous activity, especially for riders over 45.

The study from UC San Francisco shows that bicycling injuries have nearly doubled over a 15-year period ending in 2013, which they acknowledge coincides with the boom in bicycling.

Looking at it another way, the rate of injuries per 100,000 people has increased 28%, with the biggest increase coming among riders over 45, which jumped to 42% of reported injuries.

On the other hand, the number of people riding bikes has increased dramatically, rising as much as 32% in LA in a recent three year period, and 174% in Minneapolis in just five years, according to stats from People for Bikes.

And much of that increase has come from people over 45, as bicycling has become the new golf, as the press loves to tell us.

So it’s only natural to expect that both the rate and number of bicycling injuries would go up. It’s just as likely that the injury rate among cyclists, rather than the general population, may have gone down or stayed the same.

More troubling is the news that the most serious types of injuries have increased. According to the study, the rate of hospitalization due to bicycling injuries more than doubled, while the proportion of head injuries increased 60% over that period, and torso injuries jumped 21%.

That would imply that more bike riders are getting hit by cars, perhaps due to more people riding in an urban environment, as the author of the study suggests.

Which means the solution is not urging greater caution among older riders, or frightening them off their bikes, but improving safety for all cyclists in our cities.

But until someone takes the extra step of placing bike injuries in context with solid ridership stats, studies like this are interesting, but ultimately, meaningless.

Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the heads-up.

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This one’s worth checking out, as a bike riding comedian Mario Joyner captures his rants on GoPro while riding the streets of LA.

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Aussie rider Michael Rogers will get the Olympic bronze medal he didn’t win in Athens in 2004, after gold medalist Tyler Hamilton was stripped of his medal for doping three years ago.

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Local

Who says LA wasn’t a bike city? As this photo shows, they were the perfect way to get to a 1940s cowboy matinee. Looks like bike corrals are nothing new, either.

Bike SGV wants your support to help turn the massive Puente Hills landfill into LA County’s first bike park.

Examined Spoke questions why Milt Olin’s death has never been reported to California’s official SWITRS database. Why, indeed?

Vancouver’s Modacity will present Observations from an Emerging Bicycle Culture in Santa Monica and Echo Park next month.

 

State

The mayors of seven California cities, including LA and Lon Beach, call on the state to act now to fix our crumbling roads and bridges, including the need for comprehensive bike networks. Let’s not forget bad roads pose a greater risk to the safety of bicyclists than they do to motorists.

To no one’s surprise, Coronado’s NIMBYs have succeeded in killing a proposed bike path along the beach. The way residents reacted, you would have thought someone had suggested rerouting the 5 Freeway through their bucolic burgh.

Maybe bike collisions wouldn’t be rising so fast in Hanford if police would stop blaming the victims and focus on the people in the big, dangerous machines.

The LA Times provides more details on the San Francisco U-lock attack, in which a salmon cyclist breaking the rules of Critical Mass whacked a car with his lock after the driver bumped his bike.

A writer for the Sacramento Bee says a beautiful network of bike lanes will mean nothing if people are afraid to park their bikes out of fear of bike thieves. She’s right; LA’s efforts to encourage more people to ride instead of driving will be doomed if their bikes are gone when it’s time to ride back home.

 

National

Bicycling’s Joe Lindsey says our bike-riding president has done a lot to aid bicycling, but your voice is needed to ensure further progress. Meanwhile, the Feds tell risk averse traffic engineers to get off their ass and stop using them as an excuse.

Sarah Goodyear explains why we call crashes “accidents” and why we need to stop, while bike lawyer Bob Mionske explains what to do if you’re in one.

People for Bikes says protected bike lanes are seven times more likely to encourage people to ride.

Now that’s more like it. A Portland man apologizes for an ill-advised tweet, and says he doesn’t really believe anyone should run over people on bikes.

The cast of Breaking Away will reunite at Interbike in Las Vegas this month, including Dennis Christopher, Jackie Earle Haley, Paul Dooley and Dennis Quaid. If they can get Robyn Douglass to show up, I’m in.

In Houston, cycling concierges will deliver virtually anything you want directly to your door.

This is so wrong in so many ways. A Boston writer, who has evidently never met a bike rider, says bikes don’t belong on urban roads. Note to Jeff Jacoby: Like most bicyclists, I have a drivers license. And we pay the same taxes you do.

A New York bike website talks with the man riding a bikeshare bike from NYC to LA.

Washington DC will teach all second grade students how to ride a bike, which used to be standard practice for schools around the country. Growing up in Colorado, every kid received bike education in elementary school, ensuring that they all grew up knowing the rules of the road.

A South Carolina website gets it, saying motorists must respect the right of bicyclists to use the road on equal terms, but bike riders should assume most drivers don’t know that.

Alabama’s Tuskegee University has partnered with a local bank to give students a free bikeshare program.

A Birmingham AL grand jury will be convened to investigate the death of a prominent African American businessman killed when the driver of a pickup plowed into three riders with the Black People Run Bike and Swim group; the other two were airlifted to a local hospital. Traffic crimes don’t normally go to a grand jury; so the question is whether the DA is just covering his ass, or if there’s something they’re not telling us.

 

International

A British soccer player is banned from driving and gets a year of community service for DUI after plowing into three cyclists who stopped on the sidewalk to fix a broken chain. Yes, they were on the sidewalk when he hit them.

Famed Italian automotive designer Pininfarina has teamed with DeRosa to produce a lightweight, low-drag carbon racing bike.

Denmark will send its first astronaut into space today. To test bike parts, of course.

Syrian refugees are exploiting a legal loophole by bicycling across the border between Russia and Norway, which bans crossings by foot or car.

A South African website offers a photo essay on bicycling in Eritrea.

New Zealand is considering requiring a 1.5 meter passing distance for bicycles, the equivalent of nearly five feet.

 

Finally…

Now that’s a different looking bike, although it doesn’t look like something an Imperial storm trooper would ride. Your next water bottle could be a bike light; then again, your next foldie could be, too.

And you know you suck as a driver when even a car enthusiast website says you should lose your license for doing a massive burnout after an argument with a cyclist.

 

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