Tag Archive for ebikes

Morning Links: An epic symphonic CicLAvia, the Militant Angeleno, and free JUMP Bikes through next week

This is not just another CicLAvia.

Sunday’s Celebrate LA! open streets event combines bikes and music to mark the 100th anniversary of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, with an eight-mile route stretching from Downtown’s Disney Hall to the Hollywood Bowl.

Although the last part will rely on shuttle buses to transfer people to the Bowl from the western CicLAvia terminus at Franklin and Vine.

In addition to the usual CicLAvia activities, this one will feature performances from symphony members and musical guests throughout the day and all along the route.

It will also feature the first ever public appearance of the Militant Angeleno, author of the popular Militant’s Epic CicLAvia Tour, offering a guide to noteworthy sites along the route.

And this one really is epic, with sites ranging from the new tallest building in LA, to a pair of Brown Derbys.

The Militant, who guards his non-camo clad identity as carefully as legendary LA hero Zorro, will host an informal free tour along the route — cohosted by yours truly.

Though how he intends to hide it in public remains to be seen.

As for my contribution, I’ll be there to answer questions and comment on bike safety issues as they come up.

But like everyone else, I’m really just tagging along to see the Militant Angeleno, and experience CicLAvia in a whole new way.

RSVP to [email protected] if you want to join us.

I’ll look forward to seeing you there.

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Santa Monica’s new JUMP dockless ebike bikeshare is free for the next week.

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Long Beach Mobility & Healthy Living Programs Officer Michelle Mowery sends word that the San Gabriel River Bike Path will be closed one more time next month.

The LADWP needs one more day of bike path closure to complete their work on the power plant.  We expect the path to be closed on October 4th between 2nd Street and 7th Street (California State Highway 22) from 8 AM to 5 PM.

Hopefully this will be the last time it’s necessary.

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Local

A Los Angeles man was sentenced to three years probation and a $550 fine for scooting under the influence; he fled the scene after crashing into a pedestrian with a BAC over three times the legal limit.

Streetsblog says the missing sharrows have returned to 4th Street. The residential street is a popular route for bike riders headed to and from Downtown. Fourth Street was supposed to become a bike boulevard, but former Councilmember Tom LaBonge backed down in the face of local opposition to installing a red light.

 

State

Palo Alto will honor a former councilwoman who set the city on a bike friendly path.

 

National

A new report from the National Transportation Safety Board says better car design could prevent pedestrian deathsAnd bike riders, too.

Now that’s my kind of state. The most Googled search term in Colorado is “Tour de France.” Which beats the hell out of Ohio’s “Ken Doll Man Bun.”

Seriously? A New Hampshire newspaper says converting a traffic lane on a bridge to a bike and pedestrian lane is a bad idea — even though it would only slow peak rush hour traffic five to ten mph below the posted speed limit.

A Nashville trauma surgeon urges scooter riders to wear a helmet, while a Massachusetts doctor says it’s irresponsible to offer bikeshare without also providing bike helmets. And that ebikes endanger everyone on the local bike path.

The New York Yankees are the only major league team that won’t allow bike helmets into the stadium, forcing riders to either go without one or rent a locker across from the stadium for $20 a game.

Shades of Los Angeles. DC bicyclists and councilmembers complain about the mayor’s Vision Zero plan, saying there’s no sense of urgency and the city isn’t doing enough to save lives; the head of the Department of Transportation says updating the Vision Zero website is just “too labor intensive.”

An Alabama YouTuber explains how to get a Walmart bike that doesn’t suck much.

The Tampa Bay newspaper insists the area isn’t really the nation’s most dangerous place for bicyclists, regardless of what the Wall Street Journal says.

Apparently it’s open season on bike riders and pedestrians in the nation’s second most dangerous city for bicyclists, with seven people hit by drivers in Jacksonville in just the last two days.

 

International

Canada’s Banff National Park considers lowering the speed limit to the equivalent of 18 mph to improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians.

Seven of the eight candidates for mayor of Winnipeg voiced their support for bike lanes and boosting active transportation.

No bias here. A Montreal pedestrian looks at bicyclists from a decidedly sidewalk perspective, saying she’s sick and tired of dealing with scofflaw cyclists on the sidewalk. Never mind that people don’t ride their bikes on the sidewalk if they feel safe on the street.

An advocacy group on Canada’s Prince Edward Island says licensing bicyclists isn’t the way to improve safety.

There’s a special place in hell anyone who’d punch an 80-year old British man after being told bikes aren’t allowed on a pedestrian path.

This is why you always need to carry ID when you ride. Authorities in the UK are trying to identify a 70-year old man who died of a heart attack while riding his bike last week.

NPR examines the proposal to ban phones on bikes in the Netherlands.

A Polish city is opening a six and a half mile, four lane bike highway, allowing bike riders to travel at speed up to 30 mph. Can we have that here? Pretty please?

Korean police are preparing to crack down on bicycling under the influence; under a new law, anyone riding a bike with a BAC of just .05 will be subject to a $27 fine. Which could be as little as two drinks for someone under 150 pounds.

A J-pop star faces charges for a drunken hit-and-run that injured a bicyclist and a pedestrian; the former singer with Japanese girl group Morning Musume turned herself in to Tokyo police 15 minutes after the crash.

 

Competitive Cycling

Eighteen-year old rising Belgian star Remco Evenepoel overcame an early crash to win the junior road cycling world championship; he won the junior time trial title earlier in the week. Although just days after he asked not to be called the next Eddy Merckx, that’s exactly what the Telegraph did in that last link.

A pair of quad-tandem teams from Great Britain and Canada are racing from Portland to San Francisco to raise money for mental health programs.

A bike race took 45 competitors over 6,000 miles from Lyon, France to Guangzhou, China on solar-powered ebikes.

Former Vuelta and Tour de France winner Jan Ullrich faces yet another assault allegation for attacking a man at the Hamburg airport, as he was preparing to fly to the US for rehab. Which clearly can’t come soon enough.

 

Finally…

Who needs a bike bell when you can put a 100 decibel siren on your handlebars. And walking on water may be a miracle, but biking on it isn’t anymore.

 

Morning Links: Motorist blames Vision Zero, the real problems on our streets, and the best bicycle dog chase ever

Honestly, I don’t even know where to start with this one.

A writer for the extremist National Motorists Association blames New York’s Vision Zero for everything this side of the Lindberg kidnapping.

Vision Zero is a huge nightmare for everyone that lives or works in NYC. Since the introduction here of Vision Zero, commute times have more than doubled. The city has introduced road diets, has converted streets for bike and bus only lanes and has gotten rid of left turn lanes. These changes have made NYC streets nearly impassableRoad rage has now become more common due to frustration, crowded roads and less space to drive.

Under the Vision Zero regime, driving to work during morning rush hour takes hours instead of minutes. NYC has become anti-car and really anti-transit too since there seems to be little money available to fix the decrepit subway system. The use of congestion pricing to help pay for the subway won’t help either. Is it fair to make motorists pay for public transportation when we might not even use it?

Never mind that improving public transportation relieves pressure on the traffic grid, as more people choose not to drive.

Let alone his unsupported claim that commute times have doubled — or maybe it’s gone from mere minutes to hours, since he doesn’t seem sure.

Which you’d think would result in higher stress levels, though most New Yorkers seem to disagree.

He also takes offense at “entitled” pedestrians and bike riders who apparently throw themselves in front of those poor, put-upon motorists in hopes of getting hit.

Road diets are one thing but another side product of Vision Zero is that it has produced  a generation of distracted and entitled pedestrians who expect motorists to yield to them as soon as they step foot into the street even when crossing against the light or outside of legal crosswalks. I have witnessed so many close calls where pedestrians with intent moved in front of a moving vehicle because they know whatever happens, the motorist will always be at fault. The same holds true for bicyclists who seem to think that the rules of the road do not apply to them.

But seriously, it’s worth reading, if only to understand who we share the roads with.

Or because you need a good laugh.

Photo by Stanley Nguma via Pexels.com

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Good question.

A mobility blogger says cities are dithering with e-scooter caps, while ignoring the real problem.

When was the last time cities like San Fransisco, Santa Monica, or Los Angeles threatened Ford or GM with cease and desist letters, or slapped them with vehicle caps, or threatened to ban them from cities for creating, say SUVs, that are even more deadly than regular cars, even when we knew they were more deadly 14 years ago?

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Stop whatever you’re doing, and check out the best bike chase in recent memory, as a couple of ebike riders pursue a runaway dog in a hair-raising ride through the streets of New York.

And be sure to stick around for the surprising denouement.

Update: Unfortunately, it looks like they’ve taken down the original version I’d embedded.

Here’s a less edited and non-captioned version of the video. But it’s worth clicking on the link above to get the full effect.

Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up. And the best laugh I’ve had in weeks.

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Local

If you’re headed to the 13th Annual AltCar Expo and Conference in Santa Monica this weekend, go by bicycle and take advantage of the free bike valet. Or better yet, just forget the car and buy a good ebike or cargo bike instead.

Talk about the cup half full. While everyone else saw LA’s e-scooter pilot program as compromise to keep scooters on the streets, KNBC-4 says it will force thousands of scooters off them.

 

State

An Op-Ed in the Desert Sun calls for creating protected bike lanes in a planned makeover of Indian Canyon Drive to create a Complete Street that works for everyone.

Something virtually every bike rider can relate to, as a Thousand Oaks bike rider was forced to jam on the brakes when a driver cut across two lanes of traffic to make a right turn from the left laneLet’s give a shout out to TOPD deputy Mike Berg, who says bike riders are at fault in some of the crashes between bicyclists and drivers in the Conejo Valley. Which is undoubtedly true, as is the obverse. 

Protected bike lanes barely win out over parking spaces in San Luis Obispo, as residents argue a cycle track would actually make bicycling more dangerous.

A mobility website asks if San Francisco just solved scooter sharing.

 

National

Treehugger says we all have to stop obsessing about bike helmets, because “in most interactions between bike and truck, the helmet doesn’t make much of a difference,” and just isn’t relevant to the real safety discussion.

A writer for Strong Towns says maybe we need to talk about the dangers of bicycling, as well as advocating for more riders. Because it’s not fair or honest to to do one without the other.

Bicycling says if you really like spin class, try riding a real bicycle once in a while.

Two young Korean men finished a 70-day trip across the US to call attention to Korean comfort women in WWII; only 27 survivors remain today.

A Chicago bike rider was seriously injured by a woman fleeing in a stolen car, just seconds after barely missing a father taking his kids home in a cargo bike.

New signs tell Chicago bike riders to walk their bikes on what is supposed to be a multi-use trail, after a single “crackpot” threatened to sue the city.

New York police wanted to file charges in the case of an Australian tourist who was killed in a crash with a garbage truck after a taxi driver cut her off in the bike lane, but the district attorney refused to accept the case.

A New York website says Central Park is an oasis for bicyclists — if they can get there.

 

International

Practice makes perfect. Yamaha is out with their 25th generation of ebikes, after inventing the ped-assist category in 1993.

A Vancouver bike commuter says the city’s holier-than-thou bicyclists are ruining it for everyone; his point is that a little courtesy and respect for others make a big difference. Although he could make the point just as effectively without stereotyping the people he complains about.

No bias here. A Winnipeg TV station says a bike rider was killed when “collided” with a semi. After all, it couldn’t possibly be that a truck driver actually hit the person on the bike.

Toronto’s mayor calls for a crackdown on loud cars and motorcycles, saying their owners should be heavily fined for creating disturbances. Please, please, please let that spread here to LA. Thanks to Norm Bradwell for the link.

Chinese dockless bikeshare provider Mobike has thrown in the towel in Manchester, England after too much vandalism and too many stolen bikes.

The British government has dropped plans to raise the floor for liability claims to the equivalent of $6,500, which would prevent most bike riders from filing claims for minor injuries.

Britain’s roads minister — the equivalent of our Secretary of Transportation — tells parliament that segregated bike infrastructure is critical for improving traffic safety.

Local residents are threatening to sue to stop a 100-mile closed course UK ride that’s expected to draw up to 15,000 riders; they also plan a walking protest to block the route of the ride.

A German man who now lives on his bike plans to set a new record by riding over 14,000 miles from the Arctic Circle to Argentina in under 125 days.

 

Finally…

Not even bike-riding police commissioners are safe from lawbreaking drivers. When you can’t make the ride for the first time in 18 years, so your friends try to recreate it for him.

And hats off to whoever heroically filmed a British man being beaten by a bike thief in a strong-arm robbery, while a suited man politely tries to sort of, but not really, intervene.

It’s not like anyone would actually want to do something to stop it or anything.

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If you want to join the Militant Angeleno and me for the first-ever Militant Angeleno’s Epic CicLAvia Tour on September 30th, RSVP by emailing [email protected] 

We want to guarantee a relatively small group to make sure we can keep the group together, and everyone can hear.

Morning Links: 15 years for Oceanside drunk driver, ebike regulations, and young cyclist dies in Paris-Roubaix

For once, the charges — and the conviction — fit the crime.

An Oceanside woman faces up to 15 years behind bars after she was convicted of second degree murder for the drunken hit-and-run crash that took the life of a homeless man.

In an extreme case of heartlessness, she drove over a mile with the victim’s body embedded in the seat next to her. Then parked the car around the block from her house and walked home.

And did all that after her friends warned her she was too drunk to drive, but got behind the wheel anyway.

At least she’s not likely to be driving again for a very long time.

Drunk or otherwise.

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Today’s common theme is ebikes and the rules governing them.

City Lab considers New York’s recent, and way too late, approval of ped-assist ebikes.

Popular Mechanics questions when ebikes cease to be bicycles.

And the Washington Post looks at changing ebike regulations across the US.

Meanwhile, police departments are quickly adopting ebikes as the best tool for bike cops.

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Spoiler alert: If you haven’t watched Sunday’s Paris-Roubaix bike race, stop reading now and skip to the next section.

Still here?

World Champion Peter Sagan out sprinted Swiss rider Silvan Dillier to take the cobbled Monument after taking off on a breakaway with 33 miles to go.

But don’t take my word for it.

https://twitter.com/Paris_Roubaix/status/983003465222905856?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Ftheradavist.com%2F2018%2F04%2Fthe-last-moments-at-this-years-paris-roubaix-spoiler%2F

If that wets your appetite, SoCal Cycling has posted video of the full race broadcast. And in a piece written before the race, a Scottish website says Sagan is a throwback to an earlier era.

All was not good, however.

The race known as the Hell of the North lived up to its billing with the heartbreaking news that 23-year old Belgian rider Michael Goolaerts died of cardiac arrest in a Lille, France hospital several hours after the race.

Goolaerts heart reportedly stopped 65 miles into the race, as medical staff struggled to resuscitate him as he lay on the side of the road; it was unclear if he collapsed while riding or as the result of a crash.

His team released a statement announcing the death, and asking everyone to respect the privacy of Goolaerts’ family.

He had posted this moving photo on Instagram just two weeks ago.

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Local

A new report shows what the lower LA River could look like as you ride through, once the existing gaps in the bike path are finally closed.

An Op-Ed in the LA Times says almost no one walks to or from LAX because the airport has made it virtually impossible to do. But those who do may find some hidden gems. Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the heads-up.

Culver City goes to the polls Tuesday; Bike the Vote LA has your voter guide.

 

State

A section of the Santa Ana River Trail near Angel Stadium has finally reopened after authorities cleared out a massive homeless encampment. Although they can’t seem to find anyone willing to take the people in.

Dockless bikeshare comes to downtown San Diego.

San Francisco celebrates Walk to Work Day with a tone-deaf distracted walking tweet from the fire department.

The US Bicycling Hall of Fame in Davis is now accepting nomination for this year’s class.

 

National

Great piece from elite cyclist Ayesha McGowan on the need to go beyond tokenism in bike marketing, and bring more diversity to the bike industry. McGowan is working to become the first African-American woman on the pro tour.

Fast Company makes the case that the Trump administration blew it by focusing on highway projects in their infrastructure plans, rather than bike and pedestrian trails that can revive rural economies.

Curbed’s Alissa Walker says you can’t be a climate mayor if you’re making room for more cars. Let’s hope LA Mayor Eric Garcetti reads that.

It only took Goodyear 120 years to get back to making bike tires.

Seattle’s new mayor puts the brakes on plans for a promised bike lane on 4th Street, delaying it until at least 2021 over fears of slowing traffic. Because everyone knows people on bikes don’t count as traffic. Right?

The Durango, Colorado newspaper calls on everyone — or mountain bikers in particular — to respect the land, and stop using closed trails and building illegal ones.

Denver’s bikeshare system is adopting a hybrid program to compete with dockless bikeshare, allowing riders to leave bikes in hundreds designated bike corrals, or leave them anywhere for a small additional fee. Something Metro may want to consider as dockless bikes expand through Los Angeles.

New York bicyclists ride to call for safer streets and remember a father killed by a drunk driver as he rode his bike.

Treehugger says you could solve the problem of New York’s salmon cyclists by getting rid of one-way streets. Or at least installing contraflow bike lanes.

This is the cost of traffic violence. The University of Georgia remembers an award-winning professor and experienced cyclist who was killed while riding her bike last week; the driver was accused of following too close and not giving a safe passing distance.

 

International

Road.cc explains why cycling clothes are better for long rides, and why you probably don’t need them around town.

A Costa Rican website recognizes the need to improve bike safety, but questions whether a new 9.5 mile bike lane in the capital does more harm than good.

A Canadian broadcaster has been cited by two government agencies for calling on drivers to hit “idiot” bicyclists.

A Vancouver Op-Ed says bicycling is often more convenient than driving in major cities. I’ve found that true in Los Angeles, where I could commute from Westwood to DTLA in the same time it took to drive, with far less hassle and aggravation.

Around 4,000 young Londoners took over the streets as they rode to call for an end to knife crime in the wake of several recent murders. Meanwhile, a website looks at the movement bringing young riders onto the streets of the city.

A UK bike rider kicks the car habit after 20 years, and says it feels great.

A British newspaper asks if it’s time to make bike helmets mandatory after a young helmetless rider suffers major facial injuries after going over the handlebars. While some studies have shown helmets can help prevent facial injuries, he would have had to wear it over his face to prevent most of his; a good pair of glasses probably would have done more to prevent his eye injuries.

An English town tries “cyclist speed dating” to get more people on bikes.

An Egyptian man set off on a two month, 3,000 mile ride to Russia to watch the 2018 World Cup after Egypt qualified for the first time in 28 years. And the US didn’t. I’m just saying.

Walking and bicycling could be the best solution to Nairobi’s crushing traffic.

An allegedly drunk South African driver was convicted of killing two cyclists on a group ride in a high speed crash after leaving a night club at 5 am.

No bias here. A Kiwi columnist proudly admits to road rage when it comes to people on bicycles — especially MAMILS in colorful Lycra.

An Aussie study suggests that suggests that speed limits and lane widths may be more to blame for crashes with bicyclists than bad driving. However, a Canadian study shows that nearly half of bike collisions are the result of driver error and following too closely.

A 15-year old Australian cyclist takes bike-hating drivers to task for their shocking attitudes.

 

Competitive Cycling

London’s Independent talks with the author of a new book about the dark side of cycling.

A pair of Kiwi cyclists rode Paris-Roubaix in honor of nearly 60 members of the New Zealand Cycling Corps buried nearby, who were killed on the Western Front in the war to that was supposed to end all wars. Except it didn’t.

Tom Boonen hints that he believes Fabian Cancellara used motor doping to beat him in the 2010 Tour of Flanders. 

In an absolutely unnecessary display of stupidity on the part of race organizers, American cyclist Lawson Craddock was lucky to escape without injuries after crashing into one of several parked cars that were left on the race course on the final stage of the Tour of the Basque Country.

 

Finally…

Stopping dockless bikeshare vandalism 19¢ at a time. When a bike lane is just a hippie plot to make construction workers ride bicycles.

And the next time you find yourself being attacked by angry cows on a bike ride, call a plumber.

 

Morning Links: Monterey Park votes for Complete Street, Griffith Park study released, and ebikes are trending

Monterey Park, Complete Streets

Bike SGV reports that Monterey Park approved plans for a 1.6 mile Complete Streets project and protected bike lanes along Monterey Pass Road.

This will be the first project to be implemented from the city’s 2014 bike plan.

Hopefully many more will follow. And other area cities will take the hint.

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CD4 Councilmember David Ryu released a study on access to Griffith Park and the Hollywood Sign, which could result in either more or less access to the park, depending on which proposals are implemented.

Not to mention a second Hollywood sign.

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CNN says ebikes are emerging as a hot trend in the US. Except in New York, that is, where they are banned for reasons no one can seem to explain.

However, sales have nose-dived in Malta, dropping 90% after the country required ebikes to be registered. Which should be seen as a warning of what could happen if bicycle registration laws are passed in the US.

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As if we didn’t have enough bikeshare news yesterday, there’s still more today.

A West Hollywood site offers more on the city council’s discussion of the WeHo Pedals bikeshare system, and the possibility of making it free for city residents.

Santa Cruz proposes removing 28 parking spaces to make room for bikeshare stations, featuring ped-assist ebikes.

Scottsdale AZ officials are less than thrilled with the results of a dockless bikeshare pilot program, which has led to blocked sidewalks and art installations being used as bike racks.

Oak Park IL is pulling the plug on its participation in Chicago’s Divvy bikeshare, saying for the cost of the program, they could buy every kid in town a new bicycle every other year. But they probably won’t.

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Local

CiclaValley takes you on a ride along the historic Old Ridge Route.

South Pasadena is looking at ways to fix commuter traffic, after the long-fought 710 Freeway was finally killed; councilmembers asked that projects in the city’s 2011 bicycle master plan be included after a consultant gave them a low priority.

El Monte police increase enforcement of traffic laws after a pair of fatal collisions involving older pedestrians.

Manhattan Beach approves the installation of three bike Fix-It stations around the city.

Long Beach approves plans for up to 120 new oil wells in exchange for restoration of wetlands on a depleted oil field, including installation of walking and bike paths.

 

State

Work began today to add buffered bike lanes and other safety improvements along San Diego’s Torrey Pines Road.

Bike Index co-stars with a group of DIY crime fighters to battle Bay Area bike theft. Which provides another chance to remind you to register your bike for free before anything happens to it. And report it to the nationwide Bike Index stolen bike database if anything does.

A Marin paper says it makes sense to remove a bike and pedestrian lane from the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge to make more room for more cars, instead of offering a safe alternative so people don’t have to drive.

A wanted felon doesn’t get far trying to outrun police on his bicycle in Humboldt County.

 

National

Why settle for a folding bike when you can have folding wheels, too?

Nissan wants drivers to control their cars with their minds. Too many people don’t seem to think behind the wheel now, so what makes them think wearing a funny hat will change that?

People for Bikes lists a dozen bucket list rides for 2018, including a Big Wheel spin around the City by the Bay.

A Honolulu woman faces charges for pointing a gun at a bus driver in a dispute over the fare, then stealing a passenger’s bicycle off the front rack.

These are the people we share the roads with. Police say an Oregon woman drove off after killing a bike rider while driving drunk last month. Then returned to the scene to yell at the victim’s companions.

The federal Bureau of Land Management will expand the nationally recognized Phil’s World singletrack network in southwestern Colorado, while protecting a nearby golden eagle nest.

They get it. A Wyoming task force calls for a police training curriculum for bicycling and walking enforcement, as well as testing a high-powered air-blower to clear debris off highway shoulders that could pose a hazard to bicyclists.

Burlington VT drivers are feeling squeezed by new protected bike lanes. Although the real problem seems to be parked cars and inadequate snow removal. But sure, it’s always easier to blame the bikes.

She gets it, too. A Massachusetts letter writer says building a safe bicycle network is like building another transit system.

New York City responds to fatal bike crashes with a plan for a pair of protected bike lanes crossing Manhattan. Unfortunately, changes like this usually only happen after it’s already too late.

The New York bike path terrorist who killed eight people on Halloween is reportedly asking for a plea deal to avoid the death penalty.

Evidently, hit-and-run just isn’t a crime anymore. South Carolina authorities decline to charge a driver who left the scene of a fatal crash. If police don’t take hit-and-run seriously, why should drivers?

 

International

Mexico City is encouraging bicycling as more riders take to the city’s crowded streets, though safety risks remain.

Caught on video: A British bus driver is caught on a bicyclist’s helmet cam texting at the wheel.

Kindhearted Brits have started a crowdfunding campaign to replace a bicycle stolen from a midwife who used it to get to and from work.

Wired examines the physics of the bizarre 69-degree UK intersection that blinds drivers to the presence of bicyclists.

The 21-year old heir to a Florentine noble family was killed in a London collision while riding a brakeless fixie, though that doesn’t appear to have anything to do with the crash.

Record-setting Scottish round-the-world cyclist Mark Beaumont is planning to set a new hour record — on a penny farthing.

A new Barcelona study shows expanding bicycle networks across Europe could prevent 10,000 premature deaths a year on the continent.

A five-year old New Zealand program encourages truck drivers to ride a bicycle to learn how it feels on the other side of the street.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Kiwi cyclist is still winning races at 83-years old, and doesn’t plan to quit.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews looks at retired cyclist Iris Slappendel and her efforts to form a union for women cyclists.

Pro cyclist Nicholas Dlamini became the first black South African to wear a leader’s jersey in a World Tour race, leading the chase for the King of the Mountains at the Tour Down Under.

The Press-Telegram says it’s anyone’s guess how many people will actually show up for the Amgen Tour of California when it visits the city next May, after concluding that the official estimate of up to 225,000 who attended the event in 2007 was only off by around 190,000.

 

Finally…

It’s not every day a bike race is halted for a pending volcanic eruption. Probably not the best idea to participate in a triathlon five weeks after filing a claim for “incapacitating injuries.”

And forget exercise, chocolate and naps are the key to a long life.

 

Morning Links: People for Bikes touts illegal ebike route, MyFig happening, and Bike the Vote says no on C

That ebike ride could end up putting you behind bars.

Jimmy Mac forwards word that People For Bikes recommends riding your ebike on the 21.5-mile Big Topanga Loop in the Santa Monica Mountains.

The only problem is that ebikes have been banned on the loop for nearly a year. Which means following their suggestion could get you up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

He reports he’s been in contact with the organization, and been promised that it would be removed from their site. But as if this weekend, it’s still there.

Let’s hope they have a good attorney on retainer for anyone who follows their suggestion.

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Doug Moore sends word that concrete changes are finally starting to take place with the long-delayed MyFigueroa project on South Figueroa. (As opposed to the long-delayed Figueroa for All project on North Figueroa.)

Just a heads up that there’s been less talk and more action regarding the MyFig project, especially between USC from the south to Olympic to the north.

The far right lane in each direction has changed: no parking. At all. Now it’s just a regular driving lane.  For cyclists – this is sort of worse than it was before, but will get better once they get to the part of the project that includes installation of the bike lanes.

I cycle this section several times a week to get to my office on campus, and wow, the drivers are not used to getting stuck behind cyclists. I seem to be pissing off a lot of motorists since this change.

The other thing is new paint/striping/lines on the north bound side. Now, it’s one lane for cars. One. Wow, are motorists really pissed now. All the other lane space has been re-striped for the upcoming bus stop islands.

So it’s a little tense out there until everybody gets used to this new flow.

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Bike the Vote LA takes a stand on Measure C in the May 16 General Election, urging a no vote on the measure that would actually reduce accountability for police officers under the guise of increasing civilian oversight.

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More fallout in the ongoing tribulations of bike-friendly CD1 candidate Joe Bray-Ali, who tries to get ahead of any further news links by revealing that he’s had affairs, and owes $48,000 in back taxes for his Flying Pigeon LA bike shop.

But he vows to press on in his bid to defeat incumbent Gil Cedillo, who must be twirling his imaginary mustache like Snidely Whiplash.

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Sad news, as 21-year old pro cyclist Chad Young died from injuries he received falling on a steep descent in the Tour of Gila last Sunday. VeloNews talks to people who remember the young rider; even before his death, the pro peloton struggled with news of his injuries.

Irish pro Nicholas Roche considers the recent deaths of Young and Michele Scarponi, noting that riders have just a helmet and a thin layer of Lycra to protect them, and sometimes that’s not enough.

Sunday marked the 11th annual Dana Point Grand Prix.

The Redlands Bicycle Classic stage race will kick off this Wednesday.

A British paper tells the story of Alfonsina Strada, the only woman to race in the Giro d’Italia.

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Local

A book website talks with LA’s bike-riding librarian.

The West Hollywood city council will consider the city’s new Bicycle and Pedestrian Mobility Plan at tonight’s meeting. Hopefully, they won’t approve it, then ignore it like most cities seem to do.

A Pasadena man was whacked in the head with an electrical box as he tried to ride away following a dispute with a man in a hardware store.

No bias here. My News LA says Pomona police are planning to celebrate Bike Month by cracking down on scofflaw cyclists. Except that’s not what the story from City News Service actually says, or what the police will be doing.

The Long Beach Report offers photos from Saturday’s Beach Streets University, where they estimate 10,000 people turned out for the open streets event. Note to LBR: It’s ciclovías, not “cylovias.”

A bike train by any other name. Manhattan Beach kids will be encouraged to join a “cycling school bus” as part of the city’s Bike to School Day on Wednesday.

 

State

Streetsblog asks how we can get Orange County’s many progressive transportation plans off the shelf and onto the streets.

Newport Beach wants you to be a roll model during May’s Bike Month.

Chula Vista held its first open streets event on Sunday.

Oddly, a Ramona hit-and-run driver doesn’t appear to have been arrested yet, even though witnesses followed the driver home after s/he hit a cyclist, and watched as the garage door was closed.

A Palm Springs city councilman says the planned CV Link bike path will be an asset for the Coachella Valley, and that cities that have pulled out of the project will come to regret it.

A Big Bear paper calls Big Bear Lake the cycling capital of Southern California. To which virtually every other cycling hotspot would beg to differ.

A Victorville bike rider was collateral damage when a driver stopped to let him cross the road and was rear-ended by another car, knocking it into him.

The Walgreens/People for Bikes Ride for Red Nose kicked off from Santa Barbara yesterday.

Sad news from Half Moon Bay, where a trail of debris led police to a driver who fled after killing a bike rider, dragging the bike underneath his car to a house a mile away.

San Francisco’s Bay Bridge finally opens to bike riders and pedestrians seven days a week, as long as they’re willing to settle for going just halfway across.

Here’s something you don’t see every day. San Francisco reconsiders plans for a protected bike lane after a massive public outcry. No, to keep it.

The Napa Valley paper says it’s Bike Month, so let’s get out there and ride.

 

National

A new US study shows walking significantly increases blood flow to the brain, to a greater degree than bicycling. That does not, however, mean that walking is better for your overall health than bicycling, despite the breathless headline.

An economics website gives a wrongheaded nod to the deadly 85th Percentile Law, which allows speeding drivers to set their own speed limits, while failing to mention that higher speeds might be safer for drivers in some cases, but increases the danger for everyone else on or near the roads.

The LA Times looks at Portland’s efforts to make their bikeshare more accessible for handicapped users. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

An eight-year old boy born without most of his right arm is able to ride a bike for the first time, thanks to a team of students from the University of Iowa who built a special prosthetic arm and socket attached to his handlebars.

Once again, business owners shoot themselves in the foot by opposing protected bike lanes in Minneapolis, even though studies show added business from bike riders and pedestrians usually more than makes up for the loss of parking spaces.

Someone placed a memorial plaque on the site where a very much alive Ohio cyclist pulled an endo after hitting a squirrel, leading to a mystery as local officials tried to figure out what the heck happened there.

In a massive clusterfuck, a New York judge a) bases his judgment for a killer driver on an inaccurate preliminary report, b) apologizes to the driver, and c) rudely berates the victim’s mother when she tried to point out the mistake. Needless to say, d) the cop assigned to the case who promised to show up, didn’t.

New York police respond to killer drivers by cracking down on bike riders who dare venture outside the bike lanes.

Delaware’s former governor plans to ride across the US to benefit state organizations serving local youth, and encourage citizens of the state to be more active.

An education website profiles the South Carolina teacher who raised funds to buy every kid in her school a new bicycle.

A Florida woman hopes it will send a message to other drivers after she’s awarded $4 million in the death of her husband as he rode his bike in 2012.

 

International

A British Columbia driver gets eight well-deserved years for the drunken crash that killed two bicyclists, as well as the passenger in his own car.

A Winnipeg city councilor calls a new bike and pedestrian bridge a game changer that will dramatically improve safety.

Once again, a British lord blames London’s bike lanes for causing pollution. Not all those big, dangerous machines that spew smog out their butts, or the people who insist on driving them.

A “keen cyclist” won’t be riding again anytime soon after his wife got tired of UK thieves stealing his bike for the third time in six months. Although you’d think after the second time he’d stop leaving it in the garage.

More proof that people are the same everywhere, as Beirut drivers are already parking on the city’s one-week old bike lane. Meanwhile, bikeshare has opened in the city, even though users have to compete with aggressive motorists for road space.

 

Finally…

Evidently, when you’re a big star, you get stuck with the crappiest bike. As if watching out for trucks on the streets wasn’t bad enough, now we have to worry about them falling from the sky.

And who knew Earth Day was a leftist scam conducted by “self-appointed shamans” of “alleged ethnicity?”

They’re on to us, comrades. And our alleged ethnicities.

 

Guest post: Support your local ebike dealer or local bike shop on Small Business Saturday

It's the 2nd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive! Donate today to help keep SoCal's best source for bike news coming your way every day.

It’s the 2nd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive! Donate today to help keep SoCal’s best source for bike news coming your way every day.

These days, a lot of people are considering ebikes, for obvious reasons. They’re a great way for beginners to get into bicycling, to ride without fear of hills or going too far, or commute to work without breaking a sweat.

Not to mention they’re a lot of fun.

But where you buy your bike matters, as Linda Coburn of Pedego 101 in Westlake Village explains.

………

At least once a week we receive a call from someone asking if we can help fix the e-bike they bought online. “It was a really good deal,” they say. “Their website has excellent reviews,” they continue. “But they don’t respond to phone calls or emails now that I have the bike.”

This is exactly why you buy a technologically-advanced machine from a local bike shop, preferably one that specializes in e-bikes. You certainly can’t test-ride a bike online. Many times a customer comes in after doing a lot of Internet research thinking they know exactly what they want but after trying a variety of styles, sizes and power options they often fall in love with something very different.

The staff of your local e-bike shop have likely ridden in the neighborhood. They know how each bike will perform on that monster hill and in the riding conditions that you will encounter. Most local bike shops host group rides and will be happy to give you directions to great ride locations. You may even end up making some new friends!

And of course, when you buy local you meet the actual people who will be there for you in case a problem should arise. Most local shops handle warranty repairs and will get your e-bike set-up just right. They will make sure the accessories you choose will fit and even install them for you.

So support your small and local business owner on Saturday, and every day. It’s good for you and it’s great for the community.

………

I’m a firm believer in supporting your local bike shop, because they’re the ones who will take the time to ensure you buy the right bike or gear for the way you ride, and be there to support you long after they take your credit card.

I’m told some shops even accept cash.

So take a few minutes out of your frenzied Black Friday, or tomorrow’s Small Business Saturday, to stop by your favorite LBS and buy something. Anything.

They’ll appreciate the business.

And if you’re new there, take the time to introduce yourself and get to know them, so you won’t be a stranger the next time you come in.

 

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