Tag Archive for Don Ward

Morning Links: Wolfpack Hustle debates bike lanes with John & Ken, and Calbike forms state’s 1st bike PAC

Wolfpack Hustle’s Don Ward — aka Roadblock — debates bike lanes with KFI-640’s bike-hating John and Ken.

I haven’t had a chance to listen to this one myself yet, but knowing Don, it should be well worth the listen. If you can tolerate the willful indignorance of the hosts, anyway. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the link.

Meanwhile, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton offers constructive criticism of the Times’ pro-bike plan editorial criticizing District 1 councilmember Gil Cedillo’s veto of the North Figueroa road diet and bike lanes.


Is there a problem with racism in the Tour de France peloton?



The Times looks at the proposed law to create a much needed alert system for serious hit-and-runs.

Books on bikes could be coming to Boyle Heights.

Culver City Safe Routes to School hosts a family-friendly Bike, Walk & Scoot Festival this Saturday.

Santa Monica will install new green bike lanes on 2nd Street.



Calbike forms a political action committee to intervene in elections on behalf of bike riders. Maybe they can finance a recall in CD1.

Costa Mesa police are looking for a bike riding purse snatcher.

A Rialto cyclist is seriously injured in a collision with a dump truck.

Big Bear will host a bike festival and Gran Fondo on upcoming weekends.

The Bay Area’s largest bike festival comes to Oakland.



Bicycling reviews performance popsicles for cyclists.

New self-powered bike trailer takes the work out of towing.

Portland plans to rely on bicycles in case of disaster.

Evidently, it’s open season on pedestrians and bicyclists in NYC.

New York’s financially troubled Citi Bike is on a the verge of a large cash infusion and expansion.



Studies from around the world show investing in bicycling pays.

A letter writer says Montreal cyclists put up with a lot from drivers, while another asks what about pedestrians?

A British roadie website offers five reasons to become a cyclist. And then there’s cake.

Designed to be deadly? An Irish girl is the latest child to be impaled by the handlebars of her bike, a so-called freak accident that seems to happen on a regular basis.

Amazing idea, as the Cold War-era Iron Curtain is being turned into a 4,225 mile bike trail. Those of us old enough to remember the bad old days could never have imagined something like this.

Cyclists are trying to claim a piece of the road in Dar es Salaam.

A Brisbane rider looks at mirrors for bike riders.



A merry band of beery brothers bikes 426 miles through the Colorado Rockies. And caught on video: A truly horrifying first person view of the UK equivalent of a left cross; amazingly, the rider walked away.


Urgent action needed on Expo bikeway and Beverly Hills; more breaking news on the legal front

Big news on the legal front to start your week.

Along with a call for urgent action on the Expo Bikeway, and to fight hit-and-run in the seemingly heartless biking black hole of Beverly Hills.

As well as your chance to be an ambassador for bicycling in your own neighborhood.


Let’s start with the long-awaited Expo Line bikeway, which appears to be rapidly turning into a train wreck for Westside cyclists.

Expo Bicycle Advisory Committee member Damien Newton offers a detailed background on just how and why the plan is riding off the rails. It’s a must read for anyone who cares about the safety of cyclists on our streets.

Which is where cyclists will end up when the planned bikeway forces them onto dangerous crossings. Or when they avoid the bikeway entirely because they feel safer on busy high-speed streets than on a badly designed, rushed and corner-cutting bikeway.

Fortunately, you still have a chance to put your foot down and demand the Expo Line Authority start listening to the BAC they appointed, rather dictating bad design from above.

The LACBC is calling for concerned cyclists — and yes, you should be very concerned — to attend the next Expo BAC meeting at 8 am tomorrow at the Skanska-Rados Joint Venture Field Office, on the 3rd floor at 11390 W. Olympic Blvd.

If you can’t make it, they — and I — urge you to email the list of Expo Directors on their website today to demand a safer bikeway from Downtown to Santa Monica. They also provide a sample email you can use as a template.

It will only take you a few minutes to write and send an email.

And the bikeway you save could be your own.


Meanwhile, Don Ward, aka Roadblock, calls on cyclists to attend the next Beverly Hills City Council session on Thursday to demand an end to their local — and hopefully unofficial —policy of letting hit-and-run drivers off the hook without even the slap on the wrist they get in most jurisdictions.

Ward points out a recent case in which a cyclist was severely injured, and the driver actually came forward to confess. Yet the case was so badly bungled by local authorities that no charges were ever filed.

According to Beverly Hills PD a break came the next day when the alleged driver, Victoria Chin, phoned in to confess her crime. Detectives arranged for her to turn herself in that day. They requested she bring the car in as well. This is where things apparently got complicated for the Beverly Hills Detectives. After flaking on her first appointment, Chin showed up the following day along with a lawyer but without her car. Beverly Hills Detectives acknowledge that they failed to process her confession and they sent her home without booking or arresting her.

Months later, citing issues not fully understood, the case was declined by District Attorney Steven Katz. Katz claims that since there was no car in custody, and the woman confessed on the phone and not in person, there was not enough evidence to move forward with a case. Questions arise of whether this is an isolated incident or part of a larger pattern of Beverly Hills apathy towards cyclists… Paul was not the first hit and run victim in recent memory to be denied justice by the city.


Brett Morin, the other driver charged in the road racing death of pro cyclist Jorge Alvarado, has accepted a peal deal. He’s scheduled for sentencing on October 3rd; considering the gift of a sentence given the driver who actually killed Alvarado, don’t expect more than a slightly harsh caress of the wrist.


Our anonymous Orange County source reports that we finally have convictions in the case of two allegedly drunk Huntington Beach speed racers who flew off the road, critically injuring a cyclist riding on the beachfront bike path.

Yes, even separated bikeways aren’t safe from speed-crazed Southern California drivers.

And yes, both have once again gotten off with a relative slap on the wrist — even if one appears to be a tough sentence for that particular judge.

Which says far more about our SoCal court system than we should be willing to tolerate.

Glenn Michael Moore & Michael Dennis Roach are the scumbags who were skunk drunk at half past eight on a Sunday morning and racing each other down PCH (can’t be late for church!!!) when they clipped each other.  Both speeding vehicles flew down an embankment.  Moore’s car slammed into Richard Lauwers as he rode his bike on the completely segregated beach bike path.  The next speeding vehicle on PCH was the responding ambulance.

Lauwers was having a nice quiet ride after a leisurely weekend breakfast at our famous Sugar Shack.  He would’ve been home in another twenty minutes.  Instead he ended up in the ICU, where he spent six days.

On Wednesday, Moore pleaded guilty to all counts against him.  He was sentenced to fines & restitution, one year in jail (stayed), three years of formal probation, and a  “First Offender Alcohol Program.”  Oh, and his license was suspended for a year.  I can’t figure this one out, because I’m working with insufficient data here.  IF Moore was before Judge Adams, who generally presides over that particular courtroom and is lenient, AND had a good lawyer (and by all accounts his lawyer is very good), AND he doesn’t have an extensive rap sheet (he’s pretty clean in OC at least), then this is a surprisingly tough sentence.  It’s still insufficient, but it’s certainly on par for Judge Adams and our overtaxed justice system in general.

Meanwhile, Michael Dennis Roach appears to have three separate sentences for the single count of engaging in a speed contest with injuries to another: two sentences for 90 days in jail, and a third for 90 days of service in lieu thereof.  Also, three years of formal probation as well.  Dunno what this is about, but there’ll be further proceedings on the 28th. Also, the OCDA unearthed a DUI with property damage that Roach had committed in November 2001 (while driving on a suspended license, but never mind that); a second DUI within 10 years could have resulted in a stiffer sentence, but oddly, his DUI charge and its enhancement were dismissed.

Did I ever mention that I have a real problem with drivers who put everyone else at risk because they can’t keep their damn feet off the accelerator — let alone get behind the wheel when they’re drunk or stoned?

The good news is that Lauwers is okay, and back on his bike.


The LACBC is offering a way to become more active as a bicycling advocate in your own neighborhood. And make a real difference where you live and ride.

The new Neighborhood Bike Ambassador program is designed to empower you to influence the implementation of the L.A. bike plan, as well as programs developed by the LACBC.

The first kick-off meeting takes place tonight in the Valley, followed by four others throughout the L.A. area over the next 10 days. The meetings — and the program itself — are open to everyone; you can sign up to be a Bike Ambassador here.


Finally, a few other brief notes from the world of bicycling.

In a truly shocking case, a Santa Rosa driver takes his road rage off road, chasing a cyclist 100 yards onto a golf course before running him down with his car. The good news is, an arrest has been made; the bad news is, the 81-year old driver has done it at least twice before. And was still allowed to drive.

Thanks to Emily C for the heads-up.


The schmuck who kidnapped and murdered Louisiana cyclist Mickey Shunick pleads guilty to first degree murder in her death, as well as that of another woman. Hopefully they’ll shove him so deep into the living hell that is Louisiana’s Angola Prison that he’ll never see the light of day again.


Police may have solved the recent rash of Calnago thefts. The Orange County Bicycle Coalition reports hat two stolen Calnagos have been recovered when they were abondoned by the thieves outside an OC Dennys, and a third was recovered in a West Hollywood pawn shop through stolenbikeregistry.com.

No word yet on arrests in the case.

The L.A. Times offers a nice profile of Cypress Park’s Flying Pigeon bike shop and the eponymous Chinese bikes they love and sell.


And a PA cyclist moons a couple in a passing car, then threatens them with his bike seat before crashing into a police cruiser.

Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.

Fighting back against hit-and-run in L.A., and a tree points the finger at the car that killed it

Not all victims of hit-and-run are human.

Hit-and-run is a serious problem in L.A.

And from what I’ve seen, pretty much everywhere else, too.

According to LAPD statistics, a driver flees the scene in a staggering one out of every three reported collisions in this megalopolis we call home.

Last year alone, the city saw 18,819 hit-and-run collisions. That includes 36 cases where someone — another motorist, a cyclist* or pedestrian — was left to die in the street. Along with another 134 people severely injured and 852 with less serious injuries.

I have my own thoughts on how to address it at a state level. Like automatically revoking the license of anyone who leaves the scene of a collision. And impounding the vehicle as evidence pending a trial — then seizing and selling it upon conviction, with any proceeds going to the victim.

After all, you don’t let a bank robber keep the gun he used.

State law already allows a car to be seized by the state if it’s used to solicit prostitution. And isn’t leaving a victim bleeding in the street a little serious than trolling for a blowjob?

Meanwhile, writing for KCET, L.A. bike advocate Don Ward — better known as Roadblock — has his own thoughts on how to address it on a local level.

  1. Elevate the status of hit-and-run against cyclists and pedestrians to that of assault, regardless of the severity of the injury.
  2. License numbers must be run immediately, and a patrol car deployed to the owner’s home to gather evidence.
  3. Saying “I didn’t see them” should be an admission of guilt, not an excuse — especially when it involves a pedestrian in a painted crosswalk.
  4. Speed limits must be enforced by all means possible.

He’s planning to take it up with the L.A. Police Commission at their next meeting at 9 am Tuesday at police headquarters, 1st and Main Street, across from Downtown City Hall. Ward is asking cyclists to meet him at the Starbucks one block east of police headquarters at 1st and Los Angeles Street before the meeting to discuss strategy.

You may think you have more important things to do that day.

But chances are, you don’t.

Especially if you don’t want to find yourself lying in the street one day, watching the car that hit you speed off into the distance.

*LAPD stats show four cyclists killed in hit-and-run collisions in 2011, while my records show three out of the city’s five cycling fatalities were hit-and-run.


The key to solving any hit-and-run is identifying the driver.

But sometimes, it’s a little easier than others. Especially when the victim grabs the license plate of the vehicle that killed it.

Photos courtesy of the LACBC's and CicLAvia's Bobby Gadda

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