Tag Archive for bike theft

Morning Links: DA bargains away drunk driving charge against actor, and a Silver Lake bike theft in reverse

This is why people continue to die on our streets.

An actor on the Showtime series Ray Donovan walked with just three years probation and a six month license suspension after the LA District Attorney’s office bargained down his drunk driving and child endangerment charges.

Marion “Pooch” Hall was arrested in Burbank last year after crashing into a parked car with a blood alcohol level three times the legal limit.

Yes, three times.

And with his two-year old son on his lap, no less.

In fact, witnesses reported the child was holding the wheel as Hall weaved in and out of traffic.

So Hall gets to keep his license. And in six months, he’ll be back on the streets. Hopefully sober this time.

But I wouldn’t count on it.

And next time, someone else could pay the price.

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Call it a reverse bike theft.

Someone broke into a Silver Lake studio while the owners were away, and instead of taking anything, just left a nice folding bike behind.

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Local

Just one week after Pasadena reconfigured the Rose Bowl ride and bicyclists warned someone would get hurt, that prophecy came true when a rider went over his handlebars after rolling over the base of a warning cone.

An 18-year old mountain biker was rescued from the hills above Altadena after he fell off his bike and attempted to hike out.

KCBS-2 catches up with the proposal from Hilda Solis’ to build more protected bike lanes in LA County.

Santa Clarita sheriff’s deputies will conduct another bicycle and pedestrian safety operation on Monday. Usual protocol applies; ride to the letter of the law until you’re outside their jurisdiction so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

State

Del Mar has approved a one-year pilot bikeshare program; reading between the lines, it sounds like a mix of dockless bicycles and ebikes.

Santa Barbara will install reverse angled parking on Cabrillo Drive as part of a road diet to improve safety and make room for bike lanes in each direction.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever rode his bike up to a Turlock 7th grader and yelled racial slurs before flashing a knife at her.

San Francisco has responded to the demands of bicyclists for safer streets by announcing plans to extend the protected bike lanes on Howard Street to the waterfront, after a woman was killed riding on an unprotected section of the roadway.

Speaking of San Francisco, the city is considering plans to make more streets carfree to improve safety; plans are already underway to remove cars from iconic Market Street. Make a fist and count your fingers; that’s how many carfree streets you’ll find in Los Angeles.

Oakland bike riders are getting impatient with the city’s still unfulfilled plans to fix the streets, in part due to a number of vacancies in the city’s Department of Transportation.

The Sacramento Bee says two recent deaths in San Diego and Santa Monica show just how dangerous e-scooters are. But fails to mention that the Santa Monica victim was killed by a hit-and-run driver after falling off his scooter.

Sacramento residents are upset that someone who apparently doesn’t get the concept locked a pair of Jump dockless ebikes to a fire hydrant, and no one’s done anything about it. Seriously, the point of dockless bikeshare is that you don’t have to lock them up, you just leave them when you’re done — hopefully out of the way and not on the sidewalk. And never blocking a fire hydrant.

National

Gear Patrol says your brain should thank Trek for its new WaveCel bike helmets, designed to help prevent concussions as well as protect your skull.

If you have a Stromer ST5 ebike, it may be recalled due to a risk of the stem breaking.

Wyoming says yes to ebikes, adopting the same regulations pioneered by California.

Looks like it will stay against the law to ride a bike or a horse under the influence in North Dakota, after the state Senate killed a bill that would have changed that.

The Department of DIY is back, with permission this time. A Montana advocacy group installed its own temporary traffic circle to calm traffic, along with cameras to measure how effective it is.

New York bike advocates are calling for a temporary, weekend-only bike lane on the iconic Verrazano Bridge this summer. And say if it turns out a weekend-only bike lane causes too many problems, just make it permanent.

The New York Post says the city has hated bicycles for 200 years.

New York will install speed cameras around every public school in the city, after cameras previously installed at some schools cut speeding 60% and resulted in a 50% drop in fatalities. Yet another reminder that speed cameras save lives. And that they’re still illegal in California.

A Boston group is auctioning a $10,000 Boston Strong-themed bicycle commemorating the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing that was ridden in the 2015 Amgen Tour of California; the money will benefit a man suffering from ALS.

A Massachusetts town is “torn,” and “a town in crisis,” by a state proposal to install a rail-to-trail conversion. Seriously, if that’s the biggest problem they have, they should let go of each other’s throats and throw a party to count their blessings.

New Orleans officials travelled to Seville, Spain for ideas on how to improve bike infrastructure and safety in the Crescent City.

A New Orleans man will spend 33 years behind bars for a long string of crimes, including a half-dozen robberies and the hit-and-run death of a bike rider while driving a stolen car.

International

Now that’s what I call a beautiful ebike.

Horrifying case from the UK, where a 14-year old boy riding on a pathway with friends was beaten, kicked in the face and doused with beer — after the attackers stole his bike.

Bike riders formed a people protected bike lane in a British city.

No surprise here, as US bike companies are finding ways to work around Trump’s China tariffs.

Finally…

No, seriously. If you’re already wanted for kidnapping, robbery with a deadly weapon and accessory to a felony, don’t ride salmon. If you’re riding your bike with an outstanding warrant, nearly 7 grams of meth and a thousand bucks, put a damn light on it, already.

And if you’re carrying meth and drug paraphernalia on your bike, try not to get hit by the mayor.

Morning Links: Video of Incycle bike thieves, LA’s Green New Deal, and don’t set your mom on fire over a bike

More on the attempted theft of a $10,000 mountain bike that left the manager of the Incycle Chino store critically injured.

Incycle store manager Megan Rodriguez suffered a broken hip, ribs and foot, as well as a fractured skull, when she was run over by the thieves’ truck as they tried to get away with the bike.

Store mechanic Raul Ureno was able to retrieve the bicycle from the back of the truck after chasing them down in his car, but wasn’t able to prevent them from getting away.

According to KTLA-5, police are looking for the following suspects.

Police described one of the suspects as a white male, possibly in his 20’s, standing at around 5 Feet 9 Inches tall, weighing 190 Pounds. He had a full beard and was last seen wearing a black baseball cap, sunglasses, black Hollister hooded sweatshirt, ripped denim jeans and black shoes.

The second man was described as a white or Hispanic male in his 20’s, standing at around 5 Feet 11 Inches tall, weighing 165 Pounds. He was last seen wearing a white and blue baseball cap, sunglasses, a black jacket with a gray hood, a red and blue flannel shirt, black pants and black shoes with white lining.

The driver was described as a white female with a thin build and short stature. She has light-colored hair and was last seen wearing round frame sunglasses, a thick black hooded sweatshirt and red lipstick.

The truck they ran down Rodriguez with is described this way.

The three fled in a blue-gray GMC Sierra truck with a black paper plate on the rear and chrome detailing on the sides, handles and mirrors. The rear driver door is missing the chrome trim. It is possibly a 2008 model.

Security video shows the suspects casing the San Dimas Incycle store before moving on to hit the Chino Incycle location.

As of this writing, a crowdfunding page for Megan Rodriguez has raised over $16,000 of the $25,000 goal in less than 24 hours.

However, it also shows Rodriguez slipping under the truck’s rear wheel as she tried to stop the thieves; you may not want to see that.

There’s a $10,000 reward for information leading to their arrest.

Let’s catch these assholes.

Photo of Megan Rodriguez from GoFundMe page. Thanks to Steve S for the heads-up.

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Curbed looks at the proposal for a Green New Deal for Los Angeles to fight climate change.

We’ll know city leaders serious when they finally commit to efficient, clean transit and safe bike lanes and sidewalks, and take concrete steps to reduce the number of cars on the street.

Including in Paul Koretz’ and Gil Cedillo’s auto-centric districts.

Until then, it’s all just more talk. And more BS.

Just like all the other far-reaching the city has adopted, and forgotten.

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No, it’s not a safety measure to make pedestrians wave a brightly colored flag to cross the street.

The flags should be white.

Because it’s a failure of street design and a surrender to the dominance of motor vehicles.

………

Yes, the dispute was over a motorcycle, not a bicycle.

But the point remains: Don’t set your mother on fire if she refuses to buy you a new one.

Seriously.

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Local

South LA residents held a vigil for fallen bicyclist James Findley, who was killed by a speeding, street-racing driver on Monday.

KCBS-2/KCAL-9 says e-scooter injuries — and the resulting lawsuits — continue to climb.

The Eastsider looks at plans to build a 1,000-foot bikeway to connect the Arroyo Seco Bicycle and Pedestrian Trail with the Arroyo Seco Bicycle Path along the LA River.

Lawndale residents are concerned that bike thieves are targeting their neighborhood. Someone should tell them that bike thieves are targeting every neighborhood.

The Santa Monica Police Department will conduct their next bicycle and pedestrian safety enforcement operations this Friday and Monday, targeting any violations that put people on bikes or on foot at risk, regardless of who commits them. So once again, ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limits so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

State

A San Diego man warns against the dangers of e-scooters after he barely survived a crash when he rode out in front of a driver. The easy way to avoid that is just obey the right-of-way and don’t ride out in front of anyone.

A new Ventura workshop gives homeless people a place where they can fix their bikes and buy low cost parts, while allowing them to work for store credit.

Caught on video: A trip down a San Jose bikeway shows all three major kinds of bike lanes in just three minutes.

A San Francisco TV station says homeless people have set up a used bike shop behind a children’s playground. Or more likely, a bike chop shop, just like the dozens in the LA area.

National

The Bike League outlines a Green New Deal for bicycles.

Bicycling offers tips on how to buy a used bicycle. Although they left out the most important one — make sure it’s not stolen.

A VeloNews podcast examines why the remaining Performance Bicycle stores are going belly up.

A proposal intended to fight bike theft by homeless people in Alaska would make it a crime to possess a bicycle with the serial number removed, with a fine up to $10,000; that would allow police to seize the bike to search for the real owner. Then again, if homeless people could pay a $10,000 fine, they probably wouldn’t be homeless.

Utah’s on-again, off-again bill to legalize the Idaho Stop Law is back on again, after passing a vote in the state House.

The first Colorado city has taken advantage of the state’s new modified Idaho Stop law allowing bicyclists to treat stop signs as yields; the law allows each town to decide for themselves whether to let it go into effect. The problem with that is that what’s legal for bike riders in one town may not be legal across the street, with no way to tells you’ve gone into another jurisdiction, or what the law is there.

The traffic safety denier attack on road diets continues to spread across the US, as demonstrated by an op-ed from the Waverly, Iowa branch of Keep the US Moving — the offspring of LA-based motorist pressure group Keep LA Moving — claiming that road diets prevent emergency vehicles from getting through.

Chicago will host the city’s first-ever summit of black bike riders next week.

A carfree Detroit resident describes how he survived the polar vortex.

A Buffalo NY newspaper marks the passing of one of the few blind bike mechanics in the US.

Good for them. A DC proposal would prohibit drivers from stopping, standing or parking in a bike lane, while limiting the situations where they can even drive into one.

The latest Shift Up Podcast discusses an Atlanta tour company’s use of bikes as a gateway tool to celebrate history and explore the city.

A New Orleans TV station says bike riders are afraid of getting hit by cars in shared bike lanes. Someone should tell them that sharrows aren’t bike lanes. And I’d be scared too.

Miami Dolphins cornerback Dee Delaney kept his word, buying a custodian at The Citadel the new bicycle he promised him as a freshman.

International

Cambridge, England residents are outraged that police apparently have better things to do than ticket people for riding bikes on the sidewalk.

A British man forgives the truck driver who put him in a coma for a month by crashing into his bike when the driver changed lanes without warning, and tells him to get on with his life. The court was almost as kind, settling for a weak slap on the wrist by fining him the equivalent of just $641 and letting him keep his license.

Darn those pesky bike riders, getting in the way of the Netherlands becoming the world leader in driverless cars.

An Aussie writer examines how a Green Wave can make bicycling easier, by setting traffic lights to give bike riders continuous green lights.

Competitive Cycling

Cycling scion Taylor Phinney says he’s all in for April’s Paris-Roubaix classic after last year’s eighth place finish.

The Movistar pro cycling team is the latest to offer a virtual cycling competition, allowing you to compete against the pros from the comfort of your own home.

Pro cyclist Fabio Aru gave the pope his Colnago racing bike to be auctioned off, with the proceeds going to an aid project.

Finally…

Science says sports drinks work, even if they are overhyped. Evidently, you’re not allowed to carry cats on your bike.

And your next car-mounted bike rack could be held on by suction cups.

No, really.

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Happy Valentines Day to all.

If you find yourself alone this year, take a few minutes to do something nice for yourself today.

Just don’t ride your bike until this rain lets up if you don’t have to. And if you do, light yourself up so drivers can see you despite the limited visibility.

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

Maybe that painted bike lane is safer than you think.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Maybe then drivers would start to pay attention.

Thanks to Steve S for the heads-up.

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

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

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

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

Words.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

……….

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

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

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Local

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

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

State

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

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

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

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

National

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

International

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Competitive Cycling

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

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

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

Finally…

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Go figure.

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

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

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

It could happen.

Let’s all play a drinking game tonight.

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

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

………

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

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

Or more likely, nearly all of it.

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

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

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

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

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

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The war on bikes, part two.

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

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

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

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

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

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Somehow we missed this one last month.

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

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

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

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the link.

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

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Local

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

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

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

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

State

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

National

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

International

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Competitive Cycling

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

Finally…

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

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

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

Morning Links: Bike commuting down in US, PA man faces jail for riding a bike, and $500,000 bike shop thefts

USA Today examines the recent Bike League report showing bike commuting is down in cities across the US, and the reasons behind it.

Although the story also notes that ridership is up in some cities, particularly where they’ve invested in safe bike networks.

Around the country, city transportation officials wish there were more bicyclists like Dandino as they seek to cut traffic congestion, promote health and identify alternatives to cars. After rising for several years, the percentage of commuters turning to bikes declined for the third year straight, U.S. Census Bureau figures show.

Nationally, the percentage of people who say they use a bike to get to work fell by 3.2 percent from 2016 to 2017, to an average of 836,569 commuters,  according to the bureau’s latest American Community Survey, which regularly asks a group of Americans about their habits. That’s down from a high of 904,463  in 2014, when it peaked after four straight years of increases.

Census Bureau figures are notoriously unreliable, however, since they only count people biking to work, and not commuting or riding for other purposes.

And if someone uses a bicycle as part of a multimodal commute, it’s usually not categorized as a bike commute.

Meanwhile, the news was mixed in Long Beach.

Long Beach, California, saw a 23.1 percent increase in the number of bike commuters from 2016 to 2017, though it was down 19 percent from 2011 to 2017, the league’s report says. Over the past decade, Long Beach added bike lanes throughout the city and dedicated routes separated from traffic, including some that recently opened. Its bike-sharing program continues to grow, having 11,000 members.

“I think we are getting a lot of commuters coming into the downtown,” Public Works Director Craig Beck said. “A separated bike lane that goes four blocks doesn’t really do anything. It’s about point-to-point safety.”

And as usual, the view from Los Angeles was far less rosy.

In a push to make the city more bike-friendly, Los Angeles started installing miles of protected bike lanes and embracing “road diets,” or slowing streets to make them safer for bikers and pedestrians. In a city where the car is king, a backlash from motorists drastically cut back those efforts.

As a result, Bicycling magazine named Los Angeles the worst biking city in America in October.

Something LA city leaders still haven’t addressed. Or even seem to care about.

The story goes on to quote the author of a certain humble LA bike blog.

“The City Council and the mayor’s office are only listening to angry drivers who don’t want their commute to be slowed down by anyone,” said Ted Rogers, a veteran bike rider who writes the BikingInLA blog.

“I hear from countless people who say they quit” biking, he said. “They just don’t feel safe on the streets anymore.”

………

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any stranger.

After spending nearly two years behind bars for the crime of taking the lane — or rather, violating a judge’s order to stop doing it — a Pennsylvania bike rider could be going back to jail for violating his probation.

By riding a bicycle.

Authorities had accused David Smith of repeatedly riding in the traffic lane on narrow country roads, causing major traffic backups and — allegedly —  posing a danger to motorists by not allowing them to pass.

His defense had been that his bicycle is his only form of transportation, and that he was only riding where he was supposed to by taking the center of the lane.

Evidently, though, the local authorities weren’t fans of vehicular cycling. Smith was sentenced in 2017 to up to two years in jail, but released on probation after having already served a total of 20 months because he refused to accept a mental health evaluation that could have led to his release.

One condition of his probation was that he not ride a bicycle until his probationary period ended in 2020.

A condition he allegedly broke by riding this past October.

Still, there’s something very wrong when what a simple traffic violation — if that — can lead to serious jail time.

………

Either something is a little fishy, or a Colorado bike shop owner may be the world’s unluckiest pedal peddler.

Because he’s now lost half a million dollars worth of bicycles in two separate break-ins less than three years apart.

The Boulder Daily Camera reports that thieves stole up to $300,000 worth of bikes, tools and other merchandise from the Boulder bike store in a carefully planned New Years Day break-in.

That follows an unsolved 2016 break-in at the store’s Miami location, where thieves smashed their van into the storefront and made off with $200,000 worth of bikes.

………

The perfect solution for those leisurely afternoon bike rides across the lake.

………

Local

Enough with the bleak news already. Curbed offers 19 things to look forward to in 2019, including a new bike/ped bridge over the LA River, ebike dockless bikeshare, and half-hearted improvements to six LA streets.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton says Westside traffic safety deniers cynically rushed to blame the Venice Blvd Great Streets project for the death of a pedestrian on Centinela Ave over the holidays, even though the crash occurred four full blocks away. And even though the tragedy makes a better argument for implementing similar safety improvements on Centinela.

Bicycles have been banned from westbound 1st Street in DTLA through 2021 for work on Metro’s Regional Connector Transit Project; a detour is in place to get around the construction zone.

A Playa del Rey scooter rider was collateral damage in a wild police chase through three counties Thursday afternoon; fortunately, the victim was not seriously injured.

The new Spectrum news channel looks at the efforts of Watts-based East Side Riders to use bikes to keep kids on the right track.

CicLAvia is hiring an Event Production Assistant and a Social Media Manager. If they ever need an anti-social media manager, I’m all in.

Peer-to-peer bikeshare system Spinlister is back from the dead, thanks in part to Oprah’s favorite LA-based ebike maker.

State

California announced the winners in the latest round of funding for active transportation projects, including several in SoCal and the LA area.

Arraignment was postponed for the allegedly stoned driver who killed Costa Mesa fire captain Mike Kreza as he rode his bike in Mission Viejo last November. That’s nothing unusual; preliminary hearings and arraignments are often postponed several times before anything actually gets done.

A Cardiff railroad crossing will be closed for three weeks to install new crossing guards and build new bike and pedestrian paths.

No surprise here. San Diego’s docked bikeshare provider Discover Bikes says it’s being negatively impacted by dockless bikeshare. Which will inevitably be the case for most docked providers unless they make major changes.

The family of fallen Riverside County mountain biker Andres Marin is suing over a delay in searching for him after he called home to say he had been injured, which may have contributed to his death.

A Minnesota man visiting San Diego suffered nine broken ribs and a punctured lung when the crank snapped on his fixie as he stood on the pedals to beat a traffic light.

San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo was released from the hospital just one day after he slammed his bike into the side of an SUV whose driver cut him off, despite suffering a broken vertebrae and sternum. Apparently, when you’re the mayor, they actually ticket the guy behind the wheel for a change.

A 14-year old Oakland boy was critically injured in a hit-and-run that’s equal parts horrifying and infuriating; the fleeing driver dragged him for three blocks after smashing into his bike before the poor kid was able to roll free. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

National

Outside says stop tossing your damn banana peel on the trail.

Now you can take Alexa everywhere you ride. Why you’d want to is another question.

A Seattle man lost 50 pounds by taking up bicycling after his car died.

Ride Uber’s electric JUMP bikes too far in Seattle, and it will cost you a cool $25.

A Seattle bicyclist’s conscience gets the better of him, or possibly her, for yelling at an older couple to hurry up crossing the street.

Trump’s tariffs are taking a toll on little kids in Denver, because a non-profit bike shop can’t afford parts to recycle bicycles as part of an earn-a-bike program.

Clever piece from a Dallas man who rode 1,617 miles to work over the past two years; he started riding after leaving his car at the office Christmas party, then riding his bike back to get it the next day after he sobered up.

A San Antonio TX bike rider was lucky to escape unharmed when he hid behind a bus after a man started shooting at him, apparently at random; the gunman was shot and killed by police.

An Austin TX bike rider leads police to the body of a woman who had been murdered and dumped in the woods.

Actor Justin Theroux is one of us, riding his Australian-made single speed around the streets of New York. Apparently, fellow actor Bruce Campbell is, too. Thanks again to Megan Lynch.

The NYPD finally instructed its officers to ticket business owners who use banned ebikes, rather than the low-wage delivery workers who ride them.

International

A 64-year old London woman uses her bicycle to get around after suffering a stroke. But bikes are only for the young and fit, right?

A British health institute calls for improving public health by remaking the country’s streets to give bicyclists and pedestrians priority over motor vehicles.

Life is cheap in the UK, where an unlicensed, road raging driver got just five months behind bars for using his van as a weapon to ram a rider off his bicycle. It’s questionable whether he would have gotten the same light sentence if he’d used a gun instead of a motor vehicle.

Ireland’s attorney general has scuttled a proposal to establish a minimum safe passing distance in the country.

Two Chinese boys were lucky to survive with minor injuries when they were run over by a large truck and dragged 30 feet in a crash caught on security cam. As usual, be sure you really want to see it before clicking the link; even though the boys weren’t seriously injured, the image is horrifying.

Evidently, those step-through bikes are stronger than they look. After a Chinese salmon cyclist was hit head-on by a driver, the car suffered major damage to its bumper, while the bike and rider were relatively unscathed.

Competitive Cycling

About damn time. Bike racing’s governing body has finally banned the use of the opioid painkiller Tramadol during competition, even though the World Anti-Doping Agency is still allowing it.

Finally…

If you’re trying to lose weight, forget the bike ride and just take a bath. More proof you can steal anything by bike.

And seriously, if you’re riding a bike with coke hidden under your hat, put a damn light on it (scroll down).

The bike, not the hat.

Morning Links: Bike theft victims wanted, how to use LA micromobility, and your right to take the lane

Just six days left in the 4th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Time’s running out to support SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy. Donate in just minutes via PayPal, or through Zelle with the banking app that’s already on your phone, using the email address you’ll find on this link.

Any amount will help, and is truly and deeply appreciated, no matter how large or small. 

Or if you own a business, consider buying an ad on BikinginLA to show your support for this site, while you spread your message to thousands of bike riders in Southern California and around the world.

Not to mention you can write off the full cost as an advertising expense on next year’s taxes.

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If you’ve had your bike stolen, the new 24-hour Spectrum 1 News channel wants to talk to you. 

Reporter Jada Montemarano is looking to talk to current and former victims for a possible story on the bike theft epidemic. 

You can email her at [email protected] if you’ve got a stolen bike story to tell. 

Maybe shining a little light on bike theft will get the city to actually do something about it. 

………

LA Curbed offers everything you need to know to use bikeshare, e-scooters and dockless bikes in the City of Angels, but probably hadn’t thought to ask. 

The field has gotten more crowded in the past weeks, as Jump has dumped both ebikes and e-scooters onto the streets, while Lyft and Razor — yes, that Razor — have jumped into the LA scooter wars. 

………

Cycling Savvy has released a new video just for California bike riders spelling out our legal right to take the lane under most circumstances. 

As instructor Gary Cziko explains, 

“The exceptions to the far-to-the-right requirement of CVC 21202 provide clear recognition by the vehicle code that bicycling far to the right often exposes bicyclists to unnecessaryrisk, and makes it legal to avoid this risk by controlling the lane.”

Thanks to Cziko and our old friend Karen Karabell for the heads-up. 

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The LACBC is hosting their last Operation Firefly event to provide free bike lights in Pasadena tonight. 

……….

‘Tis the season.  

Canadians are taking their Christmas trees home by bike

Thirty Santas, elves and other assorted holiday types turned out for a Santa ride in the unlikely location of Fethiye, Turkey.

………

Local 

An op-ed in the LA Times says Los Angeles doesn’t have to be a city of parking lots, in part thanks to bicycles, bike lanes and the growth of micromobility. UCLA parking meister Donald Shoup has said DTLA has more parking per acre than anywhere else on Earth. So why are we wasting valuable curb space to provide car storage at the city’s expense when it could be put to better use?

It’s been awhile since we’ve heard from the LA Daily News, which takes a look at the safety improvements, including separate bike lanes, along La Tuna Canyon in the San Fernando Valley.  

How the popular Rock Store survived the Woolsey Fire that scorched the section of Mulholland Highway known as The Snake

State

The CHP highlights changes in traffic laws on January 1st, including one that removes any doubt that bike riders are subject to hit-and-run laws on Class 1 bikeways. In addition, bike riders under 18 will now get fix-it tickets if they’re caught riding without a helmet, while adults will no longer need one to ride an e-scooter. But you still can if you want. 

Great offer from the San Diego Bicycle Coalition. They’ll give the first 100 people who donate $50 to the group a free Boomerang CycloTrac GPS anti-theft system

National

A writer for Boing Boing sums up his experience commuting by ebike, calling it a total game changer for non-cyclists. 

Smart Cities Dive gazes deep into its crystal ball to look far into the future, and predicts what’s in store for dockless bikes and scooters in the year to come

A Hawaiian woman celebrates her 40th birthday with a 40-mile uphill ride into the wind from the ocean to the top of Maunakea on the Big Island, finishing in a not-so-speedy eight hours. 

Seattle questions whether the city’s water taxi service should charge extra to bring bicycles onboard

Uber executives were warned in advance that its self-driving cars were too dangerous not long before one hit and killed Elaine Herzberg in Tempe, Arizona. That jackpot sound you hear is her lawyers calculating just how much that bit of information will cost Uber in the inevitable settlement

La Crosse WI will remove bike lane markers along one of the city’s busiest streets to avoid confusion caused by new bulb-outs. Which, of course, will probably cause more confusion

The vice mayor of Cambridge MA calls for lowering speed limits to 20 mph throughout the city, while bike riders would be happy just to get cars out of the bike lanes. 

International

The Conversation says Toronto history proves that induced demand works for bicycles, too. 

A rose by any other name. London will rebrand their cycle superhighways to “detoxify” the image that they’re nothing more than motorways for Lycra louts. 

London announces a five-year plan to triple the amount of protected bike lanes to form a single, unified bike network across the city to get more people onto their bikes. Meanwhile, Los Angeles has its own 25-year bike plan to get more people riding, which is currently on the shelf gathering dust, and likely to stay there for the foreseeable future

A Welsh driver admits to running over the 75-year old mother of British cycling hero Chris Boardman after she fell off her bike in a roundabout. 

British insurers are surprised to learn they’re going to be offering a discount to bicyclists who pass the country’s Bikeability class.  

A Polish radio station is holding an on-air auction today to benefit 72-year old former Olympic cycling medalist Ryszard Szurkowski, who was paralyzed after crashing in a masters race in Germany last June. 

Over 5,000 people have signed up to use the 300 ebikes in New Delhi’s new bikeshare system

Competitive Cycling

The toughest rider in this year’s Tour de France tells his story firsthand for the first time, as American Lawson Craddock describes what it was like to ride the entire race with a broken collarbone.

VeloNews talks with the incredible Katie Compton about her 15th consecutive national cyclocross title. Next year they should just hand her the trophy, and let everyone else fight it out for second place

Finally…

That feeling when your endo goes viral in a friend’s selfie. And the perfect bicycle for when you have an extra ten grand burning a hole in your bike budget.

Or you could just buy five to ten pretty damn good bikes, instead. 

………

Thanks to Anne F, Dennis E and George W for their generous donations to the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive to keep this site coming to your favorite screen every morning! 

Morning Links: Raising funds for Woon’s baby, the Onion satirizes LA bike lanes, and taps for WeHo Pedals

And we’re back!

Let’s start with a special thanks to Steve S for debugging the new WordPress upgrade to get us back online in time for today’s post. 

Now grab the beverage of your choice and settle in for awhile. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover after missing Friday’s post. 

………

It’s Day 18 of the 4th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

Your support keeps SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming to your screen every morning.

And allows me to devote whatever I have left on this planet trying to make this a better place for people on two wheels. 

Anything you can give helps, and is truly and deeply appreciated!

………

Let’s start with a small ray of hope this holiday season. 

A baby sized ray, in fact. 

Last April, Frederick “Woon” Frazier was run down by a heartless hit-and-run driver as he was riding his bike at Manchester and Normandie in South LA. 

Now his infant son is just days from being born, eight months after Woon was killed. A tiny miracle bringing hope and joy to a family so desperately in need of it. 

Even if he will have to grow up and spend his entire life without a father. And without a father’s emotional or financial support. 

But you can help with the last part, anyway. 

crowdfunding campaign is raising money for his son to help cover medical costs related to the birth, and help him get off to the best possible start in life. 

Meanwhile, his killer has still not been charged, despite turning herself in a month later as police were closing in. And after painting her white SUV black in an attempt to cover up the crime

His mother, who has been outspoken in her calls for justice, is asking everyone to turn out for a candlelight Christmas vigil this Wednesday at the site where Woon was killed. Both to remember her son, and to renew the call to prosecute his killer. 

Thanks to Sahra Sulaiman for the heads-up

………

The Onion discovers the nation’s worst bike city, writing with satirical tongue planted firmly in cheek that LA will add a buffer lane for bike riders to recover after they’re hit by a car

 “L.A. has fallen short of bike-friendly places like Portland and Philadelphia for years, which is why the City Council voted today in a landslide 11-0 decision to finally create a bright green pathway where you can get doored and safely roll around, clutching your knee and writhing in unbearable agony,” said mayor Eric Garcetti… “Countless accidents occur every day because of our poor cycling infrastructure, reckless motorists, and many other factors within our control, but luckily Central L.A. will soon have miles of road fully dedicated to letting riders regain consciousness from these collisions. Never again will you be side-swiped, rear-ended, or cut off by a distracted Uber driver without having a place to tend to your wounds.”

Maybe a little open ridicule will be enough to get city officials off their metaphorical asses and actually do something non-satirical to improve safety. 

We can dream, can’t we?

Thanks to Patrick Pascal for the tip. 

………

That music you hear isn’t Jingle Bells. It’s the sound of Taps for West Hollywood’s WeHo Pedals bikeshare program. 

The city is pulling the plug on its docked bikeshare system after two years of low ridership and mounting financial losses, and considering opening the door to dockless bikeshare providers as a replacement

Although oddly, not reconsidering their ill-conceived ban on e-scooters.

Much of the blame falls on WeHo’s lack of bike lanes, as well as a sparsity of docking locations in much of the city. And the lack of ebikes didn’t help users navigate the steep hills leading up to Sunset Blvd. 

Unfortunately, the closure will leave a large gap in the planned Westside bikeshare system, which was intended to link Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Culver City, UCLA and West Hollywood in a single, interoperable network. 

It’s questionable how long the others will be able to survive without private sponsorship, and as dockless ebikes and scooters dominate the bikeshare landscape. 

………

Bad news from North San Diego County. 

Community leader and bike and pedestrian advocate Roberta Walker was critically injured when she was hit by a truck while riding her bicycle in Encinitas around 6 am Saturday. 

The executive director of the Cardiff 101 Main Street Association, Walker was riding on North Coast Highway 101 near Phoebe Street when she was run down, resulting in serious brain and spinal injuries, as well as broken bones. 

In a tragic irony, she was hit while riding on a section of the Coast Highway where she had advocated for significant safety improvements, including roundabouts and bike lanes, as part of the proposed Leucadia Streetscape project.

Thanks to JMK for the link

………

Congratulations to Eli Akira Kaufman on being named the new executive director of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition

I’m told he’ll take the helm of the LACBC in January, after moving over from his current position as ED of River LA

………

Megan Lynch forwards word of a suspicious looking Craigslist post for a high-end recumbent. She identified the bike as a Haluzak Horizon, and says it’s very unusual for someone selling a bike like that to not know, or at least mention, the make and model. 

So if you know someone who’s had one stolen, give ‘em a heads-up. 

Lynch also says this one looks fishy, with three ‘bents available for sale in Santa Ana, but no brand listed for any of them. 

………

After moving from Las Vegas to Reno this year, the Interbike trade show may have gone belly-up. Organizers have canceled the 2019 show, while making vague promises to return in 2020… somewhere. 

Bicycling Retailer says the country’s largest bicycle trade show died a needless death.  

………

Before we go on, take a six-minute virtual self-supported mountain bike ride across the beautiful and treacherous volcanic Icelandic landscape.

………

Local

We’re not the only ones raising funds this month. Streetsblog LA is holding a fundraiser, hoping to raise $10,000 before the first of the year

Bike Talk features Scott Gamzon and Terrence Heuston of Keep Rowena Safe talking about their efforts to fight attempts to rip out the successful road diet and bike lanes

Metro CEO Phil Washington made what may or may not have been a serious suggestion to implement congestion pricing, and use the money to make transit free

Good Twitter thread from Greg Spotts on where the newly arrived Lyft scooters aren’t welcome to be left or rented on the Westside. 

Forbes profiles Los Angeles-based Kym Perfetto, who’s gone from bike messenger to one of the first SoulCycle instructors to fitness social influencer, riding her bicycle across North and South America, Europe and Japan in the process. 

Riding a bike across the US may be challenging. But it’s nothing compared to a paraplegic Hollywood man rolling across the country in a hand-propelled wheelchair

The LAPD is forming a task force to deal with the rising rate of stolen bikes in the Venice area, as well as a number of open air bike chop shops. 

Curbed dubs Santa Monica the ebike and e-scooter capital of the world

The new Spectrum News 1 channel examines Santa Monica’s efforts to corral dockless bikes and scooters in designated parking areas.

State

Apparently, it takes two years for Cathedral City bicyclists to take off their clothes

No bias here. A San Luis Obispo letter writer complains about the county’s bicycle obsession and the money spent on bikeways, saying “bicycles should be registered and pay.” Never mind that dangerous drivers are the only reason we need safe bike lanes and paths. Or that bicycles don’t actually have any money.

Los Angeles isn’t the only California city with crumbling pavement. Berkeley’s streets are falling apart, with no plans to pave anything this year

Tragic news from San Francisco, where a surfer died after being revived by paramedics; a passing bicyclist called 911 when he spotted the man floating unconscious in the water. 

A Marin public workshop will consider whether e-bikes should be allowed on the mountain considered the birthplace of mountain biking

National

A new report from American Progress says the dawn of autonomous vehicles presents an opportunity to redesign the surface transportation system to prioritize the needs of nonautomotive users, calling it a “transportation and urban development imperative.” 

Nice piece from Bicycling about a woman who cured her depression by taking off on cross-country ride with her ‘bent, a dog and a violin, traveling 4,000 miles, 12 miles at time. Then decided to kep going across Canada. And plans on riding the Pan-American Highway to Argentina next year.

Cycling Industry News asks if belt drive bikes are bad for local bike shops

Wired considers how e-scooters could save our cities

Seattle blames historic wet weather for a 20% drop in bicycling rates. Meanwhile, a local magazine makes the case for e-scooters after the city’s mayor call them too dangerous for the streets.

New Mexican bicyclist says he’s throwing in the towel because the cars have won. 

A local writer recommends biking Colorado’s Vail Pass from the top down, while a columnist in nearby Aspen suggests beating the winter blues by riding a bike during ski season

Denver plans to move e-scooters to the bike lanes, allowing users to ride on the sidewalk only when other options aren’t available — and only at 6mph. 

Baltimore has passed a Complete Streets law, requiring all new street construction to have a bike and pedestrian friendly design.  

A North Carolina pastor is bicycling across Africa to bring fresh water to the continent

International

Vancouver bicyclists rode in honor of a 72-year old bike advocate who died after falling off his bike. 

Caught on video: A British Columbia bike rider gets doored when a truck passenger opens a door into him. 

A bighearted 14-year old Yazidi boy who had been an ISIS captive is behind a Winnipeg program to provide his fellow refugee children with bicycles; thanks to a contribution from an American man, he’s been able to distribute 100 bikes so far. 

British bike scribe and historian Carlton Reid has Christmas lunch at the world’s “oldest, poshest and most eccentric” — and exclusively male — Dickensian bike club.

London is the latest international city to get Lime’s e-assist dockless bikes.

A British bike rider is calling for more bike racks at the entrance to a local mall, after counting 200 empty bike racks hidden in the back. American bicyclists would be happy for any bike racks at most malls

Britain’s Cyclist magazine employs a wind tunnel in an attempt to answer what’s the best descending positionIn my case, it’s whichever one keeps me in one piece until I reach the bottom. 

bike-riding serial butt slapper walks with probation for attacking 21 English women after the judge rules he’s too intellectually impaired to cope with life behind bars. And no, there’s not a damn thing funny about that

The idea that won’t go away. A Swedish company is following in Volvo’s footsteps by encouraging bike riders, pedestrians and yes, even pets, to spray themselves head-to-toe with an invisible reflective paint.

In a frightening story, a South African bike rider describes how he used his bike to fend off an attacker armed with a broken bottle until a passing motorist intervened with a Taser. 

I want to be like them when I grow up. A group of Kiwi bicyclists are still riding competitively in their 80s and 90s, with the youngest racer a spritely 79. 

No bias here, either. A new “pro-car” political party in New Zealand has its sights set on bicycling, calling it a “150-year-old technology that cars have virtually eliminated.”

Or here. An Aussie website says the roads are plagued by coffee-swilling middle-aged men in Lycra, and that cycling will never succeed in the country without an “international embargo on epilepsy-colored activewear and padded undies.”

new tongue-in-cheek study in the Medical Journal of Australia says yes, MAMILs exist, even if they don’t ride to work. 

An Australian website looks at the Melbourne company whose innovative bike bell took Kickstarter by storm

Quietly exploring Hokkaido, Japan by bicycle, where “motorists are ridiculously courteous.” Let’s hope that’s contagious

A new Korean startup hopes to boost bicycling by ending the problem of abandoned and thrown-away bicycles through fixing them up and putting them back on the street. 

Bangkok, Thailand closed down 25 streets on Sunday, as part of a nationwide ciclovia

China’s massive abandoned bikeshare bike dumps caught in pictures. 

Competitive Cycling

Hour record holder Bradley Wiggins says his time at the top will be short-lived, insisting Belgian pro Victor Campenaerts will beat his record next year

Lance Armstrong: venture capitalist

Finally…

How to suck at cycling. How to ride rollers for 24 straight hours without going crazy. If you’re going to flee the scene after a crash, you might want to take your license plate with you.

And your next mountain bike could be a Lego

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Thanks to Ralph D, Kirsten B, Glen S and Janice H for their generous donations to the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive

Morning Links: Whittier hit-and-run fugitive captured in Australia, bad guys on bikes, and no justice for killer cops

It’s Day 6 of the 4th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive. Give today to support SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy!

………

In a surprising development, Australian police have arrested a woman for the hit-and-run death of a bike rider in Whittier last year.

The FBI lost the trail of 33-year old fugitive Andrea Dorothy Chan Reyes after tracking her to Asia when she fled the country, just five days after killing Agustin Rodriguez Jr.

The father of four died when a driver stopped to let him cross the street on his bike, then was struck by Reyes after she swerved around the stopped car. She dragged Rodriguez and his bicycle the length of two football fields.

Reyes was found living in Adelaide and using 11 different aliases.

She now faces extradition to Los Angeles on charges of vehicular homicide and felony hit-and-run. Reyes could spend up to 15 years behind bars if convicted on both counts.

………

Bike riders aren’t always the good guys.

LA County is offering a  $10,000 reward in the racially motivated shooting death of Long Beach resident Fred Taft, hours after he was harassed by a group of white men on bicycles. Long Beach is offering another $20,000.

In the same story, the Long Beach Post reports the county is considering renewing a $25,000 reward in the hit-and-run death of bike rider Cole Micek last March; Micek was run over by two separate drivers, who both fled the scene.

………

Once again, LA’s DA refuses to prosecute a cop, declining to file charges against a sheriff’s deputy responsible for a crash that killed two small children.

The DA’s office also refused to file charges against the distracted sheriff’s deputy who killed Milt Olin, along with the trigger-happy Gardena cops who fatally shot the brother of a bike theft victim.

………

No irony here.

Thanks to a crappy locking job, this Stolen Brand bike wasn’t. Just mangled and stripped to the bones.

………

Local

Alhambra’s city council was scheduled to vote last night on whether to return to the recent auto-centric past by banning bikeshare and e-scooters from the city. Thanks to M for the heads-up; no, not James Bond’s boss in MI6. Probably.

A governing website talks with the policy director of Santa Monica-based Bird about the boom in e-scooters, and what cities should be doing about it.

Speaking of scooters, Long Beach wants your input on the city’s e-scooter program.

 

State

California’s former Governator is one one of us, proclaiming his desire to bicycle all over the world.

Monterey’s hugely popular Sea Otter Classic is exporting itself to sea otter-free Ontario, Canada.

San Francisco is on its way to becoming the first major US city to toss minimum parking restrictions out the window.

A Marin County bicycling organization is pushing for more bike access to Point Reyes National Seashore; as always, a group of equestrians wants to keep them out.

 

National

A Portland-area paper kvetches about streetcar tracks in the bike lane. Which is both dangerous and stupid; the streetcar tracks, not the kvetching. 

A popular Texas bike shop is trying to raise enough funds to stay in business after it was scammed out of $3,000 worth of bikes and accessories.

A longtime Denver talk show host with his head firmly planted up his…uh, in the auto-centric past complains about what he calls the “folly of bike lanes, insisting that no one uses them and they just get in the way of all those poor, put-upon drivers.

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on…and on. Bike riders in Boulder CO report finding tacks in their tires after riding on a popular bike route.

Chicago bicyclists faced treacherous conditions after the city failed to clear protected bike lanes after a snowstorm.

Gray-haired New Yorkers are furious over a plan to allow bicyclists to ride through a park they frequent to access a new esplanade on the East River.

New York’s city council is preparing to go to the mattresses over a proposal to legalize ebikes and e-scooters. Although someone should tell them it’s all those cars that make the city’s streets dangerous, not the people on two wheels.

America’s other ex-Tour de France champ is challenging the validity of Trump’s acting attorney general, using his nearly settled lawsuit against Lance as leverage.

Sad news from Florida, where a second bike rider has died after an apparently distracted driver slammed into a group of riders when she was blinded by the sun.

 

International

Now that’s more like it. Halifax, Nova Scotia is paying nearly a quarter million dollars to install side guards on a fleet of privately owned garbage trucks to prevent bike riders and pedestrians from getting trapped underneath.

London’s Scotland Yard releases video showing its officers dealing with lawbreaking moped and motorcycle riders by ramming them with their patrol cars. Which would be assault with a deadly weapon if anyone else tried it.

Three British bicyclists attempted to ride 5,000 miles across Europe to raise money for a charity; only one finished the journey after one rider was hit by a driver, and the other injured a knee.

An Irish bike rider saw his case against the driver who hit him thrown out of court after the judge concludes the pedestrian path he was riding on wasn’t a bikeway, even though it was frequently used as one.

Wine Enthusiast considers the L’Eroica vintage bicycle tours through the sun-drenched wine country of Tuscany.

Ten Indian men set out to ride around the world in the 1920s and 1930s; seven made it.

Cycling legend Gary Fischer talks mountain bikes with an Indian newspaper.

A South African cyclist is riding over 1,200 miles to raise funds to save the rhinos.

Caught on video: A Kiwi bicyclist records six dangerous passes and left hooks — the equivalent of our right hook — in a single ride. Or as we call that in Los Angeles, any day that ends in Y.

Tickets for bicycling offenses have dropped dramatically in New Zealand, as police have shifted enforcement towards motorist behaviors that pose a greater risk to others.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling Tips says the elite women’s cyclists are saving cyclocross, even as the men’s races are becoming boring.

A Rwandan woman dreams of forming a cycling team, 34 years after she competed in a bike race as the only woman in a field of men; it was five years before she would face other female competitors.

 

Finally…

Look at your phone when you step into the street, and pay $200. A Sketchers ad is officially non-offensive, even if a bike rider crashes while staring at Kelly Brooks in a tight sweater.

And nothing says ’tis the season like Santas on bikes.

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Thanks to William S and Phillipa M for their generous donations to 4th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive. Your gift helps ensure this site keeps coming your way every day! Any amount is truly and deeply appreciated.

Morning Links: Wicksted and Scarpa face murder charges for separate bike crashes, and bike thieves in action

Sixty-one-year old Claremont resident Sandra Marie Wicksted was formally charged with one count of murder in Saturday’s death of bike rider Leslie Pray in Claremont.

Wicksted was also charged with four counts of attempted murder for trying — and failing — to run down four other riders before she killed Pray.

A source close to Wicksted said her “mental state was deteriorating” in recent years after suffering PTSD nearly a decade ago. The empty liquor bottles in her car suggest she may have been self-medicating.

She is still being held on $2 million bond, although prosecutors plan to request an increase to $6.2 million.

Meanwhile, the allegedly stoned driver who killed Costa Mesa Fire Captain Mike Kreza as he rode his bike has also been charged with murder.

According to KCBS-2/KCAL-9, 23-year old Mission Viejo resident Stephen Taylor Scarpa was under the influence of multiple controlled substances when he drove into the bike lane and onto the sidewalk, slamming into Kreza’s bike in the process.

Unless police are alleging that, like Wicksted, Scarpa deliberately targeted his victim, the murder charge suggests that Scarpa may have at least one previous DUI conviction.

People convicted of driving under the influence in California are required to sign a Watson notice stating they can be charged with murder if they kill someone as a result of an additional DUI offense.

He faces up to 15 year behind bars, and is being held on $2 million bond.

The crowdfunding account for Kreza’s family has now raised over $160,000 in three days.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for Wicksted links and photo of Leslie Pray ghost bike.

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Granada Hills bike thieves use their SUV as a step stool to break into a complex and make off with three bicycles. And even go back to grab what looks like a tire pump.

Thanks to Joe Linton for the link to the video.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

Or maybe not.

An anti-bike saboteur known as the Boulie Tacker is back in action Down Under, sprinkling tacks on a popular riding route after taking an 18-month hiatus; several bicyclists have suffered serious injuries after hitting the tacks, as well as countless flat tires.

And a “horrifying” video of unknown origin has been circulating online, showing a car passenger firing fireworks at a bike rider and scoring a direct hit.

Or it would be horrifying if it was real; a hit from a rocket like that would probably result in serious, if not fatal, injuries.

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Local

If you want to know why Los Angeles was never seriously considered for Amazon’s second HQ, consider that their guidelines called for good transit, bicycling infrastructure and affordable housing. None of which apply in the City of Angels.

 

State

Streetsblog talks with Caltrans Executive Director Laurie Berman about Complete Streets, climate change and culture change at the agency; she’s the first woman to hold the top position at California’s Department of Transportation.

The CHP is warning bicyclists and pedestrians in the Modesto area to fight an increase in traffic collisions by making sure they can be seen. They’re handing out free bike lights to help, which doesn’t do pedestrians a damn bit of good.

 

National

A Chicago letter writer the city doesn’t have to ban bikes from the popular — and crowded — Riverwalk; just build a protected bike lane on a nearby street.

Indiana’s supreme court rules that a woman who was hit by an on-duty cop while bicycling with her kids can take her case to trial.

Life is cheap in New Hampshire, where a California woman was sentenced to a whole six months behind bars for fleeing the scene after seriously injuring a bike rider. If the courts and lawmakers don’t take hit-and-run seriously, why would anyone else?

A Pennsylvania letter writer says he’d like to see “a report on accidents, damage and injuries caused by cyclists,” as well as statistics on how many riders have left the scene. Just wait until someone tells him about hit-and-run drivers.

A Savannah columnist says not all bicycling is by choice; some people are just trying to get to and from work the only way they can.

Sad news from Florida, where one of the four bike riders who were critically injured by a 91-year old driver has died; state troopers blame the victims for making an unsafe lane change.

 

International

Cycling Tips lists the world’s ten best bike shops , including the Cub House right here in San Marino.

Lime has launched a $3 million campaign to encourage their customers to use the company’s dockless bikeshare and e-scooters responsibly; a Kiwi car review website says don’t bother, calling it a waste of time.

A British city counselor says he likes the idea of bike paths in principal, as long as they don’t inconvenience those poor, suffering drivers.

Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi is one of us, participating in a youth bike ride for peace before launching a comprehensive anti-terror military offensive in the country.

Life is cheap in New Zealand, where a road raging, hit-and-run driver walks with just six months probation after deliberately using his car to break a bike rider’s leg. On the plus side, he lost his license for 20 months, and the expenses forced him to sell his car.

The close friend of a fallen Australian bike advocate unleashes on the country’s police and politicians in an emotional video, saying they’ve done nothing to stop bicycling deaths.

 

Competitive Cycling

Geraint Thomas says he and fellow Tour de France winner Chris Froome should be co-leaders of Team Sky next year, even though Froome has four yellow jerseys to his one.

Three-time Polish world champ Ryszard Szurkowski announced he was paralyzed and unable to pay his medical bills after suffering severe spinal injuries in a multi-bike pileup while still racing at age 72.

Former rising pro cyclist Adrien Costa reveals he was trapped under a rock for six hours in the climbing fall that cost him his leg, as Zwift announces a fundraising campaign to help pay his expenses.

Former Australian pro cyclist Jonathan Cantwell has died of an undisclosed cause; he was just 36.

A British woman discusses successfully taking up BMX racing in her 50s, despite suffering from asthma.

 

Finally…

Your next ebike could have anti-lock brakes. Your next mountain bike could be a Ducati — if you’re willing to move to Europe.

And your local bike shop could look like an art museum.

Morning Links: Iconic LA interchange condemned Angelenos to car hell, and 2nd US e-scooter death in DC crash

Nice piece in The Guardian from LA’s Nate Berg, who says one of the most famous — and infamous — buildings in LA is a freeway interchange.

He singles out 1948’s groundbreaking four-level freeway interchange in DTLA, which set the standard for cities around the world.

For better or worse.

And helped condemn the city’s residents to a life dependent on cars; an unwilling addiction we’re still fighting to overcome.

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Sadly, it was almost inevitable.

The nation’s second e-scooter death was announced over the weekend, as a man riding one was killed in a DC collision, just weeks after a Dallas man died after falling off a scooter — a crash his family blamed on a hit-and-run.

And no bias here, as a tech website unfairly puts the blame on Lime for the deaths.

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Brandi D’Amore forwards news that Bike Index is rapidly nearing their 5,000th stolen bicycle recovery. Just one more reason to register your bike right now.

And if you want to donate to Bike Index, here’s the link.

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Local

Nice gesture from 3rd District LA Councilmember Bill Blumenfield, who introduced a motion in the council (scroll down to the ninth page) that would allow permanent memorial signs calling for safer driving where bike riders were killed. If they did the same for pedestrians, there’d be a sign on nearly every corner. Thanks to TJ Knight for the heads-up.

CiclaValley offers his thoughts on placing a ghost bike for the victim of last week’s bicycling crash in Winnetka, saying it didn’t have to happen.

Loyola Marymount University held its own Bike Week last week to introduce students to bicycling on campus.

Writing for the Pasadena Star-News, Steve Scauzillo offers lessons learned from Pasadena’s failed Metro Bike bikeshare program, placing the blame on a lack of sponsorship and safe streets.

 

State

San Diego’s Bike IB rolled from Imperial Beach yesterday to encourage women to be more comfortable riding a bike.

Thousand Oaks opened a new park offering six miles of trails and a bicycle skills park.

San Jose residents turned out in force to celebrate the city’s fourth annual open streets event.

 

National

Wired considers the nation’s stubborn bicycling gap, saying American cities are either cycling cities, or hardly one at all.

The conservative AASHTO guide has finally added design standards for protected bike lanes.

The Electrek website looks at the new ebikes introduced at last weekend’s Interbike bike show in Reno, while a writer for Singletrack compares the show with earlier editions in Las Vegas.

Bicyclists in a St. Louis suburb have started a petition calling for a Complete Streets ordinance that would require it to consider bike riders and pedestrians in any street project.

Milwaukee bike riders are worried about the city’s new streetcar after a number of riders have been injured on the tracks, months before it actually opens.

A Wisconsin letter writer says, contrary to common perceptions, bike riders already pay more than their fair share.

A new Minnesota study shows drivers are less likely to buzz bicyclists in bike lanes, especially in protected bike lanes.

No bias here, either. A Detroit writer complains about a growing sense of entitlement and invulnerability among pedestrians, blaming the victims for the rising rate of pedestrian deaths. If she thinks pedestrians are entitled, just wait until someone tells her about drivers. Or just hands her a mirror.

An Ohio bike shop owner says yes, riding a bike on the sidewalk is dangerous, but sometimes it’s the best choice.

Streetsblog says charging a New York bus driver who killed a bicyclist with a misdemeanor for violating the victim’s right-of-way is like “letting Jack the Ripper off with a misdemeanor for soliciting a prostitute.” Yet somehow, a British tabloid still finds a way to blame the victim. A video showing the crash was released last week. However, I wouldn’t recommend watching it; there are some things you just can’t unsee.

Definitely no bias here, as an Annapolis, Maryland newspaper asks if a new downtown bike lane broke the city.

I want to be like him when I grow up. An 85-year old Virginia man still rides his age on his birthday.

A New Orleans website says the city is literally walking and biking away from their cars.

 

International

Sony introduces a set of wireless earbuds that are designed to enhance environmental sounds, allowing you to hear both your music and the noises around you.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A British expert in human and molecular genetics who was researching hearing and sight loss in children was killed in a collision with a London black cab driver.

An English woman still has her bike because a bystander intervened to stop a young thief as he was riding off with it.

A man in the UK is riding 200 miles on his seven-year old daughter’s pink bicycle to raise awareness of the brain tumor that killed her three years ago.

Britain is planning to connect a network of existing horse trails to create a 1,000-mile offroad bikeway running the entire length of the country.

A British high school has ordered students to place numbered license plates on their bikes so people can report any antisocial behavior to the school. However, anyone who arrives on foot or by car is apparently welcome to carry on, antisocial or otherwise.

A road raging Irish cab driver intentionally brake checked a man, knocking him off his bicycle after arguing with him moments earlier; the whole incident was caught on video.

Oslo, Norway is taking a number of steps to actively discourage driving in the city center to “give the city back to the people.” Which drivers naturally see as a war on cars.

Three-quarters of Swiss voters agreed to enshrine bicycling in the country’s constitution to protect the rights of bike riders, forty years after voters protected hiking and walking. And no, that’s not likely to happen here in the US anytime soon.

A Venice, Italy design exhibition features the work of British bespoke bicycle maker Hartley Cycles, founded by a former artist and jewelry maker.

A bicycle ambulance program is saving the lives of people suffering from malaria in Zambia, and could be rolled out across Africa.

Collisions between bike riders and kangaroos are on the rise in Australia, and expected to double the normal annual total as a drought brings the wild animals out of the bush.

An Aussie mom has forbidden her teen children from bicycling after concluding the country’s drivers are too aggressive behind the wheel.

 

Competitive Cycling

British Cycling officials have approved adding a sixth day to the women’s Tour of Britain, which already offers prize money equal to the eight-day men’s race.

 

Finally…

Seriously, stealing a kid’s bike is bad enough without taking a dump on their lawn. How to lie and beg your way into a new bike.

And Trump ordering the removal of bike lanes is just a bad joke.

For now, anyway.

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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 this Sunday!

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.

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