Tag Archive for Gardena

Morning Links: LA River bike path gets greener, more on Gardena shooting, and analysis of York Blvd bike wrecks

Great news for anyone who rides the LA River bike path.

And for the city of LA, as the Army Corps of Engineers approves a $1.8 billion plan to restore the river to a more natural state.

Which means maybe you’ll see more natural habitat and wildlife along your route, and less graffiti-ridden concrete slabs.

Although the question of who’s going to pay for it, and how, remains to be determined. As does just how long it will take before they get started, let alone finish.


The Times explains how the city arrived at the $4.7 million settlement for the death of Diaz-Zeferino and the wounding of Eutiquio Acevedo Mendez, and looks at the differing interpretations of what happened in the 27 seconds before officers opened fire. And whether the shooting could have been avoided.

Meanwhile, a writer on City Watch calls the video a damning and graphic look at the cold-blooded shooting of an innocent man.

And yet, the three officers who opened fire on the unarmed brother of a bike theft victim haven’t been charged — or even disciplined — and are still patrolling the streets.


LADOT Bike Blog looks at collision data for York Blvd over a 12-year period, noting that drivers were responsible for over 56% of collisions involving cyclists.

Most of the wrecks where drivers were at fault were the result of failure to yield or improper turns, while the overwhelming majority of collisions where the bike rider was at fault resulted from riding salmon.

It’s also worth noting that hit-and-runs on the boulevard declined by 38% after a road diet was implemented in 2006, more evidence that infrastructure influences behavior.


A new vegan cookbook co-written by LA’s own nutritionist and endurance bike racer Matt Ruscigno — the man behind the city’s toughest hill climb challenge — gets an overwhelmingly positive review.

The again, it’s about cooking with chocolate and cacao, so what’s not to like?


A new app promises to make you more visible while you’re walking.

Designed by a former Fire Chief and a former Public Works Supervisor, who experienced first hand the results of drivers treating people on foot as if they were not there, the free PedSafe app was developed to make pedestrians more noticeable while walking. It provides a random amber flashing light & pedestrian symbol on a smartphone to alert drivers that someone is walking & crossing a street.

Sounds like it could also act as a backup flasher if yours goes out or you get caught without lights while riding after dark.

Thanks to Frank Colin for the heads up.


The Guardian offers a timeline of Thursday’s stage 12 of the Tour de France. The Alps could be the last obstacle for Chris Froome, after his dominating performance up to this point.

A pair of retired riders point an accusing finger at Froome, while others whisper about the still theoretical crime of motor doping. In his defense, Froome insists he’s clean and has never tested positive. Which is exactly what Lance used say, isn’t it?

VeloNews sums it up nicely, saying Froome is the only one who can ever know for a fact if he’s riding clean; the rest of us can only believe.

Twenty-three-year old French rider Warren Barguil may be in a lot of pain after a spill, but he’s also in 11th place in his first Tour. No explanation for why Vincenzo Nibali is faltering after winning last year’s TdF, though.

And Bicycling asks what kind of bike race fan you are. I’m more the sit in front of the TV watching the race while wishing I was out on my bike instead type.



A bike rider was seriously injured Thursday morning when he was hit by an off-duty LAPD officer on his way to work at Central Ave and Washington Blvd just south of DTLA. The officer was reportedly rattled by the collision, saying the rider came out of nowhere. Amazing how many bike riders are able to defy the laws of physics and just materialize out of thin air. And if he’s rattled, just imagine how the cyclist feels.

Registration for the Wolfpack Hustle Civic Center Crit opens today.

Malibu’s Los Virgenes Road is undergoing a year-long widening project, and will re-emerge with a bike lane on the east side.

A writer for the Beach Reporter gives the new Redondo Beach Gateway Project high marks from both a cyclist’s and driver’s perspective, failing only as a site for an illegal run in the street.

The Temple City Tribune recommends a ride on the 1.5 mile semi-paved Duarte bike path this summer.

A writer from LMU says you shouldn’t have take home a six-figure income to afford bike share. Are you listening, Metro?



Twenty percent of San Diego roads could be candidates for road diets.

The Rim Nordic mountain bike park near Big Bear is now officially open for business.

San Francisco could remove a short section of bike lanes to improve safety, while a police captain promises a crackdown on cyclists rolling stop signs, rather than directing resources where it might save more lives as part of the city’s Vision Zero.

A letter writer on a Marin website says dump the Prius and get a bike, already.

The Sacramento Bee says texting behind the wheel is dangerous, and reminds us that Governor Brown twice vetoed bills to toughen the law against it.

A Chico woman gets her bike back thanks to a sharp-eyed bike shop employee who recognized a thief he knew, then the bike the thief was riding.



Writing for Gizmodo, Alissa Walker makes the argument that there are no accidents, and says the word should be dropped from use to describe crashes. The Colorado Highway Patrol is already on board.

A Senate committee passes a Complete Streets amendment to accommodate all road users in street designs, including cyclists and pedestrians, as well as approving a provision allowing bikes to be rolled onto Amtrak trains. This would be a huge step forward if it makes it to the final bill.

A writer for the Wall Street Journal says you can eat like a normal person, ride a regular bike and live your life, and still be a serious cyclist.

A Seattle cop has written over 1,100 cycling tickets in just an eight year period — including 17 to the same bike messenger.

An audit says bike-friendly Denver’s bike plan is suffering from a lack of funding and a slow pace in implementing a planned 270 miles of bikeways.

An Austin TX driver flees the scene after deliberately brake checking a bike rider; he reportedly honked first and yelled at the rider to get in the bike lane, which was blocked by vegetation.

It’s happened again. A 19-year old Dallas driver is under arrest after hitting a cyclist and driving nearly a mile with his victim lodged in the windshield, before dumping him in an alley to die. He’s only charged with causing an accident resulting in death. If there’s any justice, that will be upgraded to a 2nd degree murder charge.

An Illinois cyclist is hospitalized after colliding with a goose, followed by a collision with another rider. No word on the condition of the goose.

A Michigan transplant patient takes his new heart on a two-day, 70-mile bike tour.

Pittsburgh’s mayor says more bike lanes are coming, despite the bikelash.

Unbelievable. A New York judge says a repeat hit-and-run drunk driver who has already killed two people should be allowed to get his driver’s license back. Evidently, the judge wants to go for three; if you even wonder why people keep dying on our streets, judges like this would be a good place to start.

Savannah police are looking for the thief who was caught on video stealing a $7,000 Time bike; it was the fourth time in 10 years the owner had a bike stolen. Yet he still left his high-end bike unlocked on a stair rail after finishing his ride? Seriously?

Nice story, as a Tampa cop gives a mentally disabled man a ride to work after his bike is stolen, then teams with his partner to buy him a new one.

Miami bike crashes nearly doubled over a two year period.



Treehugger says bikes are not cars, and infrastructure is better than helmets.

Cycling Weekly looks at reader’s most embarrassing moments on a bike. Mine was probably early in my riding career, when I was watching an attractive woman instead of the road and pedaled into the back of a parked car.

Calgary bike thefts are up 60%.

Caught on video: UK police are looking for a clumsy bike thief who rode into a parking barrier as he made his escape.

Belfast cyclists are looking forward to the city’s first ciclovía.

An Indian proposal would make bikes subject to seizure if the owner rides in the roadway instead of a cycletrack.

A group of DIY fixie and single speed riders are bringing Soweto bike style to the streets of Johannesburg.

An Aussie cyclist keeps riding his tandem despite blindness, impaired hearing and Type 2 Diabetes.

Singapore authorities plan a bikeway that would provide a seamless commuting route serving 400,000 people.



Your next helmet could have turn signals and an automatic brake signal. It’s a lot easier to make the podium in your first mountain bike race when there’s only three people entered.

And road rage knows no bounds, as a pair of Balboa Island bike riders are harassed by a driver. In a golf cart.


Morning Links: More fallout from fatal Gardena police shooting; Lance calls the Froome kettle black

The LA Times reports on a deposition from the Gardena police sergeant who should have been in charge when officers fatally shot Ricardo Diaz-Zeferino, but apparently wasn’t, as he explained his mindset and what led up to the shooting.

The unarmed victim was shot as he tried to explain that it was his brother’s bicycle that was stolen. And that the two men police had detained weren’t armed robbers, but just friends trying to help find the missing bike.

The officer had an audio recorder, but didn’t bother to turn it on because pushing that little button would have distracted him. And he admitted under oath that he had never seen a robbery suspect jog towards police, as Diaz-Zeferino did before they blew him away, and that he never saw a weapon, in the victim’s hands or anywhere else.

It should also be noted that the officers were all allowed to review the video before they gave their statements.

Meanwhile, the Times says a debate raged on social media over whether the shooting was justified, as the victim’s family calls for a federal probe of the department and their actions in the case.


NPR looks at the first black Africans to compete in the Tour de France, on the first-ever African-based team. Previously, only beige Africans had competed in the race.

Starting today, Lance Armstrong will ride two Tour routes in advance of the race to raise money for charity; race leader Chris Froome calls Lance’s return a non-event.

Meanwhile, Froome is accused of cheating when he and his teammates look too fresh after crushing the competition on Tuesday’s final climb; his performance data may have been hacked, as well. And Lance, who should know, speculates that Froome and his Team Sky are too strong to be clean.

Francesco Reda faces a lifetime ban after testing positive for an EPO derivative at the Italian Championships last month; an Irish website accuses him of being a compulsive cheater.

Good news from Ivan Basso, who says everything’s fine after surgeons remove a testicle because of a possibly cancerous tumor. Now he has something else in common with Lance, besides a doping ban.

Newsmax absurdly asks if bicycling causes testicular cancer.

Caught on video: While the riders in the Tour de France may ride up the Alpe d’Huez, others are busy racing down it. And not on the roads.



CiclaValley rides the rest of the Compton Creek bike path.

Santa Monica police announce more bike and pedestrian safety enforcement operations later this month.

Times readers react to their recent story about proposed safety improvements to deadly PCH in the ‘Bu.

Pasadena is in the running for a $2.7 million Metro grant for a cycle track on Union Street.



A Palm Springs resident suggests breaking up the proposed 50-mile bikeway linking cities in the Coachella Valley. Which would pretty much make the whole thing useless.

A teenage Port Hueneme bike rider was seriously injured when he was hit by a van while riding in a crosswalk. Those seem to be dangerous places for people on bikes lately.

When you’re carrying heroin and already high on some controlled substance, don’t try to steal a bike from a Santa Clara college campus. And don’t try to avoid cops by suddenly riding in the opposite direction, which isn’t suspicious at all.

Family and friends pay final respects to the Afghan refugee killed by an allegedly distracted driver as he and his son rode in a Sacramento bike lane. Something that may happen more often, as cell phone use by California drivers is on the rise.



Twenty-nine states don’t have any laws prohibiting bicycling under the influence; California isn’t one of them.

A writer for Deadspin takes a long and painful journey learning to ride a bike as an adult.

Investigators concluded that a Spokane bicyclist just happened to fatally fall in the vicinity of a speeding patrol car — even though the victim’s DNA was found on the car’s bumper.

Once again, the Orangetheory Fitness chain is shocked to learn that some people think their promotional orange bikes mock ghost bikes, this time in Spokane. Oddly, they appeared to be just as shocked in every other city they’ve pulled the same stunt in.

A rider in my hometown spots someone else riding his stolen bike; police help him recover it. But seriously, if you spot someone riding your bike, don’t threaten to slit his throat with a pocketknife.

A Chicago cyclist was wearing headphones when he tried to ride around railroad crossing barriers, with tragically predictable results.

Black cycling clubs from across the county gather in Minneapolis to ride bikes and talk equity.

An Indianapolis driver flees the scene after running over a bike rider’s arm.

The Brooklyn borough president calls for safer streets in the wake of a bicycling fatality.

U2 front man Bono says he’s getting there after being injured riding his bike in New York’s Central Park, but still can’t play guitar due to nerve damage.

Bike riders face challenges on DC’s Capital Hill. A cyclist got a speeding ticket after colliding with a car that cut her off; the officer explained that she would have been able to stop otherwise. Sure, let’s go with that.

New Orleans experiences growing pains as it goes from a whopping five miles of bike lanes before Katrina to over 100 today. Meanwhile, the widow of an Atlanta firefighter killed in the Crescent City while training for a triathlon is outraged to learn the driver is back on the streets after just 14 months behind bars.



A Winnipeg writer says protests by city councilors against the city’s proposed bike and pedestrian plan are way out of proportion.

A Brit cyclist who hit a little girl and dragged her down the sidewalk denies riding dangerously.

UK Parliament members grill the Prime Minister over bike safety.

Cyclists aren’t the only ones behaving badly on the streets of Dublin.

Melbourne’s mayor wants to ban bikes from certain roads in the central business district. For our own good, of course.

A Kiwi man is ticketed for dangerous driving after trying to chase down the bike rider who robbed him.



Caught on video: An Ohio rider hands a truck passenger back a cigarette he tossed out into the street, something I *cough* may have done once or twice myself, albeit with less positive results. Here in LA, we have to dodge distracted drivers; in Mexico, bike riders have to duck low-flying UFOs.

And the capital of North Korea apparently has more separated bike lanes than we do. And sharrows, too, confirming that they really are a commie plot.


Gardena police video released in shooting of unarmed man looking for his brother’s stolen bike

As expected, a judge has ordered the release of a video showing the Gardena police fatally shooting the unarmed brother of a bike theft victim.

Ricardo Diaz-Zeferino was trying to tell the officers that the men they had detained weren’t bike thieves, but friends who were helping to look for the bike.

But instead of releasing them, the cops opened fire when he took of his hat and lowered his hands, shooting Diaz-Zeferino eight times, and injuring one of his companions, who had his hands in the air the whole time.

Even though Diaz-Zeferino was unarmed, and as the video shows, made no threatening moves towards the officers.

He was shot, apparently, because they thought he might possibly be armed, and they were too afraid to wait to see if he really had a gun before blowing him away.

And somehow, that’s okay with the DA and the Gardena police department; KNBC-4 reports the officers are still with the force and patrolling the streets.

Even though the city felt there it had enough liability to settle with the victims’ families to the tune of a $4.7 million, paid out of the taxpayer’s pockets.

That’s a lot of guilt if no one did a damn thing wrong.

The city fought the release of the video, claiming it could result in a “rush to judgment” about the officer’s behavior, according to KPCC.

Or it could just let the public see what really happened. And realize that what sounded like a bad shoot by trigger happy cops, was.

It used to be that any cop who shot an unarmed person could expect to lose his or her job, at the very least. I once knew an officer, in another state, who freely admitted carrying a spare gun and a knife to drop by the victim if he ever shot someone who wasn’t armed.

And it used to be that fellow officers wanted bad cops off the force, because they made everyone else look bad and made the public lose faith in the officers charged with protecting them.

In fact, that officer was eventually fired, at the urging of his fellow officers.

Clearly, those days have changed.

So be careful riding through Gardena.

In other cities, getting stopped by the police could get you a ticket you might not deserve, from a cop who doesn’t understand bike law.

In Gardena, it could get you shot.

But it won’t get anyone fired.

Update: I was reminded this morning that Gardena is also where a group of Hispanic riders were illegally harassed by the police two years ago, while on their way to meet with the city manager to discuss the unsolved hit-and-run bike rider Benjamin Torres.


Warning: The video below, posted online by the LA Times, shows the full shooting from two separate angles. Decide for yourself whether you really want to see that before pushing play.

Morning Links: Judge may release Gardena police video, BOLO alert for Ford pickup in Montebello hit-and-run

The LA Times reports that a federal judge says he’s inclined to release the dashcam video of the shooting of an unarmed man in Gardena.

Ricardo Diaz-Zeferino was coming to the aid of two friends helping to look for his brother’s stolen bike when he was shot and killed by Gardena police last year.

The judge agreed there was a clear public interest in releasing the video, as requested by the Times and other media companies, noting that it’s hard to argue that the shooting was legal after the city agreed to a $4.7 million settlement to be funded by taxpayers.

Maybe he should tell that to the LA County DA’s office.

A final ruling on releasing the video could come as soon as today.


Montebello police are looking for a Ford pickup in the hit-and-run death of 24-year old Steven Garcia as he was riding his bike home from work last week. Anyone with information is urged to call Montebello police Cpl. J. Dresser at 323/887-1212, ex. 353 or Cpl. R. Yap, ex. 337.

Although they could have offered a little better description of the suspect vehicle. There are a lot of Ford trucks out there.


KCBS-2 picks up yesterday’s lead story about the CHP officer dangerously buzzing two cyclists on Glendora Mountain Road.

I’m told the CHP’s Southern Division HQ is looking into the video, so something may actually be done about it for a change.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.


VeloNews looks at the highs and lows of the first full week of racing in the Tour de France. A TV station reports on the day’s happenings on the Tour’s first rest day, while Teejay van Garderen makes it the Fab Five.

Sadly, Ivan Basso was forced to drop out after he was diagnosed with a testicular tumor; there’s a high probability it’s cancerous, but more tests are needed to be sure. His withdrawal could adversely affect teammate Alberto Contador’s chances, but what really matters is his full and fast recovery.

A Billings MT cyclist endures rain, hail, snow, calf-deep mud and hallucinations to compete in the 2,745-mile off-road Tour Divide; another rider says the hardest part is knowing when to quit.



It’s been a busy day for the Times, as they look at the PCH safety study recently approved by the Malibu city council; the study lists 120 proposed improvements to the roadway, including bike lanes on part of the highway, along with another 30 recommendations for Caltrans.

KPCC’s Air Talk program discusses the Times’ report on the county’s 817 most dangerous intersections.

CiclaValley appears on the Bike Talk internet/radio program.

A new Replace Your Ride program will give you transit vouchers up to $4,500 if you turn in your gas-guzzling car. But not a penny if you trade it for a bike, damn it; thanks to Day One for the link.

Black Kids on Bikes and the Ride On! Bike co-op bring the Leimert Park community together with an open air tune-up session.

The 12-year old daughter of a space shuttle astronaut was found riding her bike in the Torrance/Redondo Beach area after being missing for 24 hours.



It took a bike-riding tourist to save the life of a 37-year old woman who collapsed from a massive heart attack while jogging in Carlsbad last year.

The wife of the Afghan refugee killed by an allegedly distracted driver while riding his bike in Sacramento feels lost without him; the family arrived in the US just a few weeks ago, after the electrical engineer risked his life by aiding US forces in Afghanistan. His 8-year old son also suffered life-threatening injuries.

A 36-year old man was killed in a hit-and-run while riding on the coast highway near Fort Bragg in NorCal.



California’s retiring Senator Barbara Boxer wins support for bike lanes and sidewalks in the new federal transportation bill.

Good news and bad news, as a new bikeshare study says yes, it provides economic and health benefits and encourages new cyclists, but there’s no proof that bike-sharing programs reduces congestion, gets people out of their cars or helps the environment.

The New York Times looks at the national trend of bike training classes for bicycling-challenged adults.

Not everyone supports Boulder CO’s removal of traffic lanes to make way for wider bike lanes. Shocking, I know.

An Illinois cyclist is nominated for ESPN’s ESPYAward, 20 years after losing his right arm in a construction accident.

Don’t try this at home. A 46-year old Pennsylvania man was killed trying to jump a homemade bike ramp on a children’s bike. Actually, it was probably a BMX bike, which most police departments don’t seem to be familiar with.

An exhibit at the Smithsonian looks at the impact bicycles have had on modern society.

A New Orleans man faces manslaughter and felony hit-and-run charges in the death of a bike-riding artist last week.

The Florida bike rider who crashed hard after slipping in the remains of a dead alligator on the roadway is making a slow recovery, with new titanium plates in his cheeks, forehead and clavicle; his wife calls him Titanium Tim. Now all he needs is a new Ti bike when he gets back to riding.



Toronto police bust a man for stealing a $19,000 custom made racing bike. Of course, that’s only $14,800 US.

Brazil’s Pan Am cycling team is escorted off a major highway by police after taking a very wrong turn.



Caught on video: A BMX rider lands the first quadruple backflip. A Pasadena motorist is caught on video playing acid jazz on a recorder while driving with no hands in moving traffic — and right next to a patrol car, no less.

And speaking of distracted driving, a Brit woman rear-ended a van, apparently because she was pleasuring herself with a vibrator while driving.

Then again, I once encountered something similar, myself.


Morning Links: Completing deadly Rosemead Blvd; Times seeks video of police shooting in Gardena bike theft

Two hit-and-run drivers killed Heriberto Ruiz last weekend.

But maybe a dangerous roadway should share the blame.

According to BikeSGV, Rosemead Blvd in the Wittier Narrows area where Ruiz was killed is dangerous by design, with speeds often exceeding the posted 50 mph limit. Never mind cars zooming off the Highway 60 offramp, which he was trying to cross when he lost his life.

A bill before the state legislature would turn control of a 2.6 mile segment of the boulevard over to the county, the first step in a possible badly needed Complete Street makeover.

Let’s hope this tragedy is enough to get much needed changes made.



Good for them.

The LA Times has filed suit to get the dashboard video showing Gardena Police repeatedly shooting unarmed Ricardo Diaz Zeferino — the brother of the bike theft victim they had been called to help, not kill.

Zeferino was simply trying to tell the officers they had detained the wrong men when they opened fire after he dropped his baseball cap, allegedly because they thought he was trying to remove something from his waistband.

Yet somehow, the DA’s office ruled the shooting was justified. I guess “unarmed” just doesn’t mean what it used to.

Maybe this will let us all find out what really happened. And explain why an innocent man was shot to death by the people sent to help him — literally at the drop of a hat.

And why the DA doesn’t seem to care.


Calbike says good things are happening for bike riders in the state legislature, including bills that would increase funding for active transportation, and allow riders to attend bike traffic schools to reduce traffic tickets.


That didn’t take long.

Just hours after Bradley Wiggins set a new hour record, he’s accused of cheating by using a non-regulation bike and getting outside assistance from British Cycling. Evidently to confirm the public’s opinion that all cyclists cheat, all the time.

Wiggins will reportedly shift his focus to track events in the 2016 Olympics. Then again, even dogs can ride a tactical race.

But did anyone check their bikes for signs of mechanical doping?



Streetsblog looks at South LA community organizer and bike advocate Tafari Bayne.

The average LA driver spends over $3,600 to get to work and back; 59% of Angelenos would use bike share if it was available in their neighborhood. That’s about $3,600 more than the average bike commuter spends.

KPCC reports on the problem of possibly incompatible bike share systems in the LA area.

Joel Epstein says bike lane opponents are still peddling in the last century. Although what they’re trying to sell, I have no idea.

CiclaValley explores the Compton Creek bike path, which seems virtually devoid of human life.

Whittier police recover a therapy tricycle stolen from an autistic 11-year old girl over the weekend.



OC Parks plans to pave a pathway in Peters Canyon to complete a continuous bikeway from Irvine Park to Upper Newport Bay.

San Diego’s plans for a $200 million bicycle network are over before they even start, according to the San Diego Free Press, which accuses the county association of governments of doubling down on the failed transportation policies of the last 50 years.

NorCal’s Tour de Manure returns for the seventh time. Insert crappy bike pun here.



Just days after we mentioned a transgender triathlete competing as a woman for the first time, a male transgender triathlete wins a spot on Team USA.

A road raging driver intentionally sideswiped a Colorado Springs cyclist, knocking him out of his first pro triathlon. Note to the Gazette: The race is still on, he just won’t be competing in it. Big difference.

My hometown sets its sights on Diamond Bike Friendly Community status. But even diamonds are rarely flawless. And hello to Andrew Reker, a fellow member of the Fort Collins diaspora. 

Bike friendly Boulder CO considers right sizing certain streets by removing a traffic lane to create spacious seven foot wide bike lanes.

Chicago’s 400-pound Puppet Bike has been entertaining people for 11 years; the bike is so heavy, two additional cyclists have to help tow it for distances more than a few blocks.

A New Jersey cop notices a kid riding his bike with a loose brake, and gets out of his car to fix it himself.

Only bike riders run red lights, right? Wrong. A new study shows one in ten New York drivers run reds.

Baton Rouge LA has a dysfunctional bikeway network; less than half of the city’s bike paths connect to another. Sort of like another LA I could name.

The Palm Beach Post asks, but doesn’t answer, whether the rewards of bike riding over age 70 outweighs the risk. Seriously?



As Ontario cyclists get the equivalent of a three-foot law, Alberta tells bicyclists don’t hold your breath.

Vancouver’s Chris Bruntlett writes about the pain of bike theft. And how the fear of theft influences where and how we ride. I often choose to walk instead of ride for trips under two miles, because it’s not worth the hassle of carrying a heavy U-lock and field stripping my bike.

A Montreal letter writer bemoans the behavior of her fellow bike riders, saying they don’t behave as well as riders in Copenhagen. On the other hand, Copenhagen has streets and laws designed around bikes; Montreal doesn’t. Or LA, for that matter.

Caught on video: A Brit bike rider is terrorized by the driver of a massive truck dangerously crowding his wheel.

Someone sabotaged the driveway of a popular Brit helmet cam safety campaigner with drawing pins.

A UK personal trainer plans to ride the entire Tour de France route on a chopper bike. Note to CTV News: There’s a bike difference between riding the Tour de France route and actually competing in it.

The Cardiff UK edition of the World Naked Bike Ride stripped down last Sunday; the LA edition rolls out on the 27th. Just promise you won’t get too excited.

The Times offers a nice profile of a woman cyclist in Afghanistan, a country generally unaccommodating to both.

An Israeli city bans e-bikes in some areas, while the country’s police want to require permits for their riders.

A former Manchester United goalie gets off with 12 months probation for deliberately turning his car into a bicyclist during a Sidney, Australia road rage dispute. Would the courts have been as lenient if he’d used a gun instead of a car? Either way, it’s still assault with a deadly weapon. Thanks to Simon for the heads-up.



With the right skills, you can do anything on a bike, or to it, as the eighth annual Bike Smut exhibition of two-wheeled erotica makes painfully clear. A Cleveland man gets released from jail once he sobered up after being busted for being drunk and sans pants in public — and promptly steals a kid’s bike on his way out.

And an Arizona teenager is busted at the border with $1,600 worth of dope in his bike tires.

But seriously, how was the ride?


LA County DA rules Gardena police were justified to shoot and kill the unarmed brother of a bike theft victim

Finally, we know what really happened.

Or not.

In July of 2013, two men were shot by Gardena police responding to the theft of a bicycle.

Except they didn’t kill a dangerous bike thief and wound his partner in crime.

The man they mistakenly killed was the brother of the man whose bike was stolen. He was just trying to tell the officers that the men they had stopped weren’t vicious thieves, but were actually helping to look for the missing bike.

Unfortunately, the three officers didn’t seem to understand Ricardo Diaz Zeferino’s Spanish, even though customers at a nearby restaurant could clearly make out what he was saying. And he didn’t seem to understand the cops commands to stop.

Now the DA’s office has ruled that they acted within the law in shooting the unarmed man eight times — including twice in the back.

The same with what they say was the unintentional shooting of his similarly innocent friend, who was also shot in the back.

The DA’s decision was based on dash cam video, which apparently captured the whole thing. It reportedly showed Diaz Zeferino reaching into his pockets to toss unidentified items to the ground, then taking off his baseball cap, despite orders to stop. The officers opened fire when he started to raise his hands again.

The cops couldn’t see his right hand, according to the Deputy DA who reviewed the video, and believed he was going to reach for a weapon.

A weapon that didn’t exist.

Not that that inconvenient fact seems to matter to anyone.

Not surprisingly, the attorneys for the victims reached a different conclusion, arguing that the video showed the police gave confusing orders, and that Diaz Zeferino’s right hand was empty and in front of his body when they opened fire. And that the other victim, Acevedo Mendez, was shot despite keeping his hands over his head the whole time.

Unfortunately, we’ll never know which version is true, since the Gardena Police Department has refused to make the video public.

Although they did allow the cops to view the video before making their statements so they could get their stories straight.

On the other hand, whatever the video showed, it was enough to convince the city of Gardena to settle a civil rights lawsuit over the shooting for $4.7 million. Not that any amount of money will do Diaz Zeferino a lot of good.

According to the DA’s report, the toxicology report showed he had meth and alcohol in his system. Which is no more relevant to the case than whether he was wearing a bike helmet.

The three officers who opened fire are still on active patrol duty nearly two years after the shooting; the department’s internal review over the shooting was on hold until the civil case was resolved, which happened earlier this week.

The outcome of that review is something else we’ll never know about; any disciplinary action will be confidential under California law.

This is the second time this year the DA has refused to prosecute cops who killed someone in a bike-related case. And the second time that disciplinary action, if any, will be a deep, dark secret known only to the officers involved.

So if your bike is ever stolen in Gardena, maybe you’re better off just letting it go. Those cops could still be out there, ready to shoot at the drop of a hat.


And whatever happens, don’t count on the LA County DA’s office to do a damn thing about it.


Alleged hit-and-run killer of Jesse Dotson faces charges; LA bike share dead in the water

Last night’s breaking news meant a couple other important stories got pushed aside.

Like the news that we may finally see some justice for the death of Gardena bike rider Jesse Dotson.

According to the LA Times, Vanessa Marie Yanez, the 23-year old daughter of an LAPD Sargent, pled not guilty to charges of vehicular manslaughter and hit-and-run, as well as a perjury charge for lying to police investigators by claiming her car had been stolen.

Dotson was riding to work at the local post office just before 10 pm on Wednesday, October 26th when he was allegedly run down by Yanez’ car. She reportedly left him to die in the street, then drove to meet a friend at a Huntington Park club before reporting her car stolen in hopes of evading responsibility.

Her father was not charged, despite extensive speculation that he may have actively aided in the cover-up, or at least been aware that his daughter had been involved in a hit-and-run.

According to the Daily Breeze, Yanez faces up to six years in prison.

Meanwhile, Dotson’s family faces a lifetime without their husband and father.

Thanks to Jim Lyle, Linda Campbell and Mike D for the heads-up.


In news that should surprise absolutely no one, LA’s long-promised Bike Nation bike share program appears to be dead in the water.

The announcement of the bike share plan was unexpectedly made at the April, 2012 CicLAvia, apparently with no competitive bidding — or much thought, for that matter.

Now the Downtown News reports that the program appears to be on terminal hold due to the city’s famously burdensome permitting problems, as well as a contract giving exclusive rights to advertise on sidewalk furniture to another company. Without the income from advertising, it would be impossible for Bike Nation to make a profit on the program, which they had promised to provide at no charge to the city.

The good news is, without the Bike Nation program in the way, Metro is free to explore a county-wide bike share program, which may or may not include Bike Nation as a participant. And which could prevent the Balkanization caused by each city developing their own incompatible bike share systems.


Connecting UCLA is attempting to start a conversation on traffic and mobility surrounding the campus, and how that affects the livability of the neighborhoods around it.

So far, the conversation is surprisingly civil.

Then again, there’s only two comments up to this point.


Finally, a San Bernardino patrol car left crosses cyclist, resulting in minor injuries. And of course, the local press blames the rider. The question is whether the SBPD will hold their own accountable for cutting off the bike rider, or follow the Sun’s lead in blaming the victim.

And a Brit writer complains — tongue-in-cheek, by his own account — that far too few bike riders are being killed on the country’s roads. Is hate any less ugly when it’s well written, or when you’re supposed to get the alleged joke?

More bad news from Gardena, as a bike rider dies nearly a week after a late July collision

Lately, Gardena seems like a very risky place to ride a bike.

Just days after a group of cyclists had their tickets for obstructing traffic after installing a ghost bike dismissed, a young bike rider has died five days after he was hit by a car.

According to the Daily Breeze, 19-year old Gardena resident Julian Ramos was taken off life support last Sunday, after suffering major head trauma in a collision on Tuesday, July 30th. Ramos was just one block from home when he was hit by a vehicle while riding on Western Avenue at 144th Street around 9:35 pm.

The crash is still under investigation.

The paper reports Ramos had recently reconnected with his mother after growing up in foster care, and was working at the Carl’s Jr at Crenshaw and Redondo Beach to help support her and two of his siblings.

A fund has been established to help pay for his funeral expenses.

Ramos is the third bike rider to be killed in the city in the past 10 months, following the hit-and-run deaths of postal worker Jesse Dotson in July, and Benjamin Torres last October. All three were commuting to or from work.

That’s an exceptionally high death count for a city of less than 60,000 people.

And a fourth man was killed when Gardena police shot an unarmed Ricardo Diaz-Zeferino who was trying to help his brother find his stolen bike this past June.

This is the 59th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and 26th in Los Angeles County, which has already exceeded the county-wide total for each of the last two years.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Julian Ramos and all his family and loved ones.

Gardena BWB tickets dropped, bike rider shooting caught on video, York road diet improves safety

Good news from Gardena for a change.

Streetsblog reports that the LACBC, along with a number of outraged letter writers, have been instrumental in getting the Gardena police to drop the tickets issued to a group of riders stopped for apparently riding while brown.

The riders, mostly members of the East Side Riders and Los Ryderz, had just replaced a ghost bike for fallen hit-and-run victim Benjamin Torres, which had been removed by the city. And which was removed a second time just hours later.

They were on their way meet with city officials when they were stopped, frisked, and — after much delay and debate among the many officers present — ticket for obstructing traffic, in violation of state law.

I doubt that members of La Grange, or any other spandex-clad Westside riding group, would have been stopped under the same circumstance. Let alone frisked.

Then again, it’s not like you can hide much in Spandex. Or anything, for that matter.

Fortunately, justice and rationality has finally reigned in Gardena.

Now if they can just keep their cops from killing crime victims.

The story notes that another memorial ride will be held this weekend. And this time, Gardena police have been invited to take part.

Now, the United Riders of South L.A. are asking for you to show your support for them, for victims of hit-and-runs, and for cycling in Gardena in general by joining them on this weekend’s memorial ride.

The group will meet this Saturday, August 10, at Rowley Park (13220 Van Ness Ave) at 3:30 p.m. to do a loop through Gardena and stop to pay their respects at the site where Torres was killed. If you have any questions, please see here or contact the East Side Riders or Los Ryderz.


The LAPD offers security video showing two gunmen targeting a bike rider in what would have been a drive-by, except the shooters got out of their SUV to fire their guns repeatedly.

Not surprisingly, police think the shooting, which occurred in El Sereno late last month, was gang related. The victim was treated and released for non-life-threatening injuries.

And just to clarify, gang-related does not necessarily mean the person getting shot at is a gang member; just that the people shooting at him may have been, or thought he was.

Anyone with information about this crime is asked to contact Hollenbeck Detective Donna Cornejo at 323-224-0104.

However, someone should tell the LAPD that bike riders, even ones getting shot at, are not pedestrians.

Mistaking the two could explain a lot when it comes to why some cops seem confused about the rights of riders.


Analysis of the 2006 York Blvd road diet shows it cut collisions by 23%, and injuries by 27%. And reduced felony hit-and-runs by a whopping 47%. However, collisions involving bicyclists continue to rise, perhaps due to increased ridership.


LA’s proposed street repair bond is revived by the city council; with reports due back to the council on the feasibility of including fixing sidewalks and complete streets serving all road users — including bicyclists — in the bond issue.

Of course, there’s a difference between mandating a complete streets approach and requesting a feasibility study. So we’ll want to keep an eye on this one.


Free three-hour bicycling skills courses will be offered by Metro and the LACBC over the next two months. The Culver City Bicycle Coalition hosts a family ride this Friday. The next Wolfpack Hustle midnight drag race gears up on September 7th; registration opens August 10th. Santa Monica’s new Streetsblog edition is coming next month. Formerly bike-unfriendly Malibu will show just how much they’ve changed with two PCH Safety Study Meetings later this month, on the 20th and 22nd. Oh the horror of it all, as Glendale streets are losing lanes and gaining signs to accommodate non-motorized road users. Long Beach looks into funding for their own ciclovia.

The Huntington Beach bike shop looted in the recent surf riot now offers T-shirts proclaiming it Riot Proof, as locals pitch in to pay for the damage. San Diego’s Qualcomm is working on a portable system to help drivers avoid bikes and pedestrians; thank goodness, because eyes and ears don’t seem to do the job. The fourth annual Ventura Share the Road Ride is scheduled for October 5th. Cyclelicious looks at the bike section of the updated 2013 California Drivers Handbook; not perfect, but it’s getting better, even if it does still say you can park in a bike lane. This is the guy behind many of the recent innovations in bike design. A San Francisco bike rider is killed in a Calistoga SWSS — Single Witness Suicide Swerve. A Red Bluff man says bicyclists don’t belong on local highways unless they pay to put bike lanes on them, neglecting to consider who pays for the traffic lanes he drives in — or that most cars come equipped with brakes to help them avoid slower traffic. Downtown Chico sports new green bike lanes, thus ruining their chance to pass for LA’s Spring Street in any Hollywood production.

The Federal Highway Administration moves to back separated cycle tracks. AAA’s own stats say high speeds kill, yet the Auto Club consistently opposes attempts to lower them. Not surprisingly, bike riders gravitate towards protected bikeways. The Bike League offers an in-depth report on women’s bicycling, and how to get more women on bikes. New flash cards help assess concussion in cycling falls; every racing team and riding club should have a set. No one really knows why your bike doesn’t just fall over; then again, maybe they do. Now that’s sad, as a barking dog leads strangers to the body of his master, who was killed in a fall from his bike. Seattle newspaper calls for more and better bicycling infrastructure. A Las Vegas bike rider is slashed by a double meat cleaver wielding Juggalo; my worst nightmare — homicidal, probably insane and horrific taste in music. The Denver public library goes mobile with a WiFi equipped book bike. Bike share generates more foot traffic than car parking in Chicago. How to not bike like a dickweed. New York mayoral candidate calls for a Vision Zero plan — aka no traffic deaths — for the city; long past time for one of our own here in the City of Angeles. Beyoncé bikes across the Brooklyn Bridge to perform at the Barclays Center; no one recognized her, proving that bikes really do make you invisible. Boston guards bikes in a subway station with a cardboard cutout of a cop — and it works; thanks to D.D. Syrdal for the link. In a heartbreaking case, the family of a cyclist riding near his home witnesses the hit-and-run that killed him. Mass insanity strikes Cobb County GA as they reject a grant because it reeks of a UN Agenda 21 plot to take away their cars. Louisiana bike rider tries to outrun a patrol car after stealing soda and beer.

Toronto cops are ordered to track doorings, while a local writer says let the city’s bike share system die a slow and painful death. In a hard-hitting piece, a Brit blogger says it’s really not funny when someone claims they were only joking about killing a cyclist or raping a woman, and the two have more in common than you might think. Britain’s Liberal Democrats call for proportionate liability to hold the larger vehicle responsible in a collision; something I’ve long called for (#10) here. Bike riders don’t deserve the abuse they receive on Twitter. Eight in ten British cyclists fear for their safety on the country’s roads; evidently, the rest don’t read online comments. Or maybe it’s because the courts send 95-year old drivers who kill cyclists after fainting back out to do it again. Advice on how to stay safe on your bike, and what to do if that advice doesn’t work. Aussie shock jocks are blamed for a bike lane backlash. Australian police crack down on rogue cyclists. A search for the best biking city Down Under. A Yokohama bike lane is a real obstacle course. A Japanese construction crane operator is arrested for hit-and-run in the death of an 11-year old bike rider; yes, a construction crane.

Finally, you can now protect yourself from the sun while you turn your helmet into a giant sombrero, but would it block the view from your built-in cam? Here’s the perfect bluegrass-flavored soundtrack for your next ride.

And if you haven’t seen it yet, just try to keep your jaw from hitting the floor when a mountain bike racer goes horizontal off a billboard to take the win.

OC bike cop run down by driver, Gardena starting to get it, and banning Banning from illegal bike laws

Evidently, not even bike cops are safe from road raging and/or otherwise wacked out drivers.

According to multiple sources, an Orange County sheriff’s deputy was patrolling on his bike at John Wayne Airport when he went to investigate a collision in the parking garage, and wound up on the bumper of a car driven by 48-year old Rebecca McLaughlin.

McLaughlin had reportedly driven her Toyota Sequoia through a locked parking gate. The wrong way, no less.

She then backed up, aimed her car at the unnamed officer and accelerated, knocking him onto the hood of her Toyota Sequoia and running over his bike. He then wrestled her out of the car after she crashed into a ticket machine, and placed her under arrest.

And no, wrestling the driver out of the car that hit you is not recommended for any riders not in uniform, no matter how tempting it may be.

The officer suffered minor injuries, while his attacker was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder, as well as an outstanding warrant.

She’s being held on over a half-million dollars bail.

Evidently, the courts take an assault on a bike riding police officer a lot more seriously than they do the rest of us.


Gardena police promise better enforcement of traffic laws, but fall short of an apology for illegally ticketing a group of minority riders.

Or shooting one, for that matter.


Looks like Banning has an illegal law on the books prohibiting bike riders from interfering with motor vehicles or pedestrians in any way.

It shall be a violation of law subject to punishment as set forth herein for any person operating a bicycle to obstruct, hinder, impede or restrict the lawful course of travel of any motor vehicle or the lawful use by any pedestrian of public streets, sidewalks, alleys, parking areas, pathways, or trails in any manner whatsoever. When operating a bicycle upon a sidewalk or other area routinely traveled by pedestrians, such operator shall yield the right-of-way to any pedestrian.

Someone should tell them it’s in violation of several state laws, starting with CVC 21200, and including the one that give the state — not local jurisdictions — full authority over traffic regulations.

 Thanks to Chris Kidd for the link.


Tuesday was the 10th anniversary of the Santa Monica Farmers Market Massacre. I remember listening to the horrific, near-constant parade of ambulances, even though I lived over six miles away off Santa Monica Blvd, as the wounded and dead overwhelmed closer hospitals.


Streetsblog’s Damien Newton takes on the Los Angeles News Group’s biased Summer of Cycling series. Even having your mother along is no guarantee police won’t pull a Taser on you during a protest ride. No bikes involved, just a driver sentenced to over five years for the allegedly intentional crash that cost two strip club patrons three legs. Actor Seth Rogan sports a sling here in LA after breaking his arm falling off a bike. The Weekly reviews Pedalers Fork in Calabasas, and kind of likes it, I think. A Newhall man has been charged with felony hit-and-run causing injury after turning himself in four hours after leaving a bike rider in the road with a broken back; thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

It nearly happened again, as a bike rider encounters a car on the same off-road bike path where San Diego cyclist Nick Venuto was killed two years ago. A deadly stretch of road in Ramona will be widened, straightened and have bike lanes added; evidently to cut crashes while encouraging speeding. Cambrian bike riders sample eight possible fixes for the Highway 1 road surface Caltrans ruined. A Bay Area bike rider survives traveling by BART. A Petaluma bike thief is found hiding face-up in a river next to the submerged hot bike. A Santa Rosa writer asks where bike riders learn the rules of the road, not comprehending that most cyclists passed the same drivers test she did; that’s not to say better education isn’t needed for both drivers and bicyclists, but get real, already.

Not surprisingly, wealthier motorists are more likely to drive like jerks; certainly matches my experience. The Bike League is looking for a manager for their Equity Initiative. Apple is finally giving you back your Google Maps, including turn-by-turn bike directions. Now your bike can convert to a stroller once you get to your destination. People with far too much money on their hands can spend $400 for a Burley dog trailer. Not surprisingly, bike friendly businesses are doing good business. The Department of DIY wins one for a change, as Seattle decides to make a guerrilla bike lane permanent. A bike-riding writer in my hometown says cyclists who break the law deserve to be ticketed. The cross-country bike rider injured in the Colorado Dark Knight shootings intends to pick up where he left off before being shot. Bicycling is growing in popularity, even in Amarillo. Horrifying video of a crash with a cyclist captured from inside a bus. A Chicago suburb says no to fining parents whose kids don’t wear bike helmets. Is it just me, or does it strain credibility just a tad that a bike rider would run a stop sign in front of the oncoming dump truck that killed him? A South Carolina man is charged with hit-and-run in the death of a cyclist — evidently, without ever making contact with the bike or rider.

The Brit twit who tweeted about running down a bike rider faces charges including failure to report an accident; what, tweeting about it wasn’t enough? The head of British transportation charity Sustrans says slow down, you move too fast. Kill a cyclist while driving a cab, and get a whopping £35 — or $53 — fine. Before you can stop for red lights, you’ve got to have a red light to stop for. Tour de France leader Chris Froome is understandably upset over questions about doping; then again, given the race’s recent history, those questions seem inevitable. The director of the Tour de France brushes off demands for a women’s Tour. An Israeli entrepreneur want to help you electrify your own bike. An elderly Chinese man is charged as a reckless pedestrian in the death of an e-bike rider.

Finally, a Spanish cyclist is wrestled to the ground by a group of women parishioners after riding his bike into a local church waving a gun; not too surprising considering the church is named Los Angeles. And the 11th annual Beverly Hills Cycling Classic will be held today.

No, not that Beverly Hills.

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