Tag Archive for hit-and-run

Morning Links: Leading climate change denier attacks bikes, and problems bicyclists face on the road & with police

He’s back.

The anti-bike writer in the Financial Post who called for banning bicycles last week, saying cities made a huge mistake in promoting bicycling, is back with a second screed even less informed than the first.

Fake news, indeed.

Lawrence Solomon, executive director of the Urban Renaissance Institute, is back to misstate and misinterpret bicycling crash statistics to suggest that bikes have made the streets more dangerous, going so far as to cite unnamed studies “not funded by bike-path proponents” that show bike infrastructure actually increases crashes.

Which is the exact opposite of every study I’ve ever seen, few, if any, of which have been funded by “bike path proponents.”

It’s the worst kind of drivel, taking unrelated data points to support his arguments, such as suggesting that the recent increase in overall traffic fatalities is somehow due to the increase in bicycling, and that bike riders are almost always the ones at fault in any crash.

The problem is, his baseless arguments have given cover to other writers to attack bikes and bike lanes, like a Staten Island columnist who asks if we’re watching the beginning of an anti-cycling bikelash, or the writer for an alt-right website who does little more than repost Solomon’s arguments.

However, few of those echoing his arguments have bothered to consider who it is who’s doing the writing — a leading climate change denier and anti-vaxxer funded by the oil and gas industry, posing as “one of Canada’s leading environmentalists.” Solomon has gone so far as to call the groundbreaking Kyoto Protocol “the single biggest threat to the global environment.”

Which would suggest that everything he says should be taken with a grain of salt.

If not an entire bag.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the alt-right link.

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A writer for Outside captures succinctly the problems bike riders face on the roads.

Let that sink in: I was in a bike lane, wearing a bright orange helmet, sans earphones, when a car traveling over the speed limit and completely off the road struck me from behind—and the police tried to ticket me and let the driver go free. I realized that day that altercations between cars and bikes aren’t so much about the risk factors, like distracted driving, bike lanes, or mountain versus road. They’re about a car culture that devalues bikes.

Over the years, passing motorists have thrown and struck me with eggs, fountain drinks, and, once, a half-empty can of beer. I’ve been shouted at, flipped off, menaced, driven into the shoulder, and even chased on foot. My own father-in-law grouses regularly about cyclists on the road and likes to joke about “door-popping” them. If cyclists can’t even rely on our families or the police, it’s clear that we are on our own.

It’s worth taking a few minutes to read.

If you’ve been hit by a driver, you may recognize yourself in the story. I certainly do; when I was run down by a road raging driver, the police officers who responded believed her story. And ended up threatening to arrest me for filing a false police report, leaving me to limp home with a broken arm and damaged bike.

If not, it’s fair warning that you may be blamed in a crash even if you didn’t do anything wrong.

It’s not right. But it’s the battle we have to fight far too often.

Note: I originally left out the link to this piece; thanks to Mike Wilkinson and J. Patrick Lynch for the heads-up.

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BOLO Alert: A bike rider was seriously injured in a hit-and-run in La Tuna Canyon on Saturday; the victim was still unconscious after 20 hours in the ICU. The vehicle was described as a newer black Mazda SUV. Thanks to Mike Kim for the tip.

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A reminder that if you haven’t signed it already, you can support one of LA’s most underserved communities by signing a petition calling for bike lanes in DTLA’s Skid Row.

We the undersigned residents of the City of Los Angeles, sign this petition calling on Council member Jose Huizar of the 14th District and the Department of Transportation to begin the process of creating Skid Row specific bike lanes on 5th street heading west and 6th street heading east. Skid Row has one of the largest bicycle riding populations in Los Angeles and because of this, we feel that we need bike lanes on these streets to improve public safety.

Thanks to Bobby Peppey for the heads-up.

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‘Tis the season.

Over 400 Cathedral City students got new bikes for getting good grades.

One hundred ninety Clovis kids got new bikes and helmets thanks to a local nonprofit group.

Hundreds of Sonoma County fire victims got new bikes on Sunday.

Five hundred kids in Tucson got new bicycles thanks to a local community activist.

Eighty Aurora IL volunteers built 350 bicycles to donate to kids.

Roughly 100 San Antonio kids took home new bikes as part of an earn-a-bike program.

One hundred bikes were donated to children of law enforcement officers in College Station TX.

Around 35 Santas rode their bikes to raise $5,000 for a Green Bay, Wisconsin children’s hospital.

Around 90 people took part in a 1.2 mile bike ride through an underground cavern in Louisville KY, decorated with more than 2 million lights and past 850 holiday displays.

An Ulster NY bicycle club donated 30 bicycles and helmets to the local county children’s services.

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It’s Day 18 of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

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Local

By all reports, Los Angeles enjoyed another successful CicLAvia yesterday; next year could see one in running through San Dimas, La Verne, Pomona and Claremont.

Metro Bike Share wants your feedback, whether or not you’ve ever used bikeshare.

David Wolfberg points out that even the LA Auto Show doesn’t recommend driving there.

 

State

Smoking dope will soon be banned in motor vehicles in California. But bikes aren’t considered motor vehicles under California law, so puff away. As long as you don’t do it in public or ride under the influence.

The Orange County Register’s David Whiting looks at efforts to clear homeless camps off the Santa Ana River Trail, even though the people living in them have nowhere else to go.

UC Santa Barbara students are having to bike through smoke and ash from the Thomas Fire to get ready for finals.

Life is cheap in San Luis Obispo, where a 60-year old driver gets 90 days behind bars for illegally crossing a double yellow line to pass another vehicle, and killing a bike rider in a head-on crash; he’s expected to actually serve just half of that. The driver is reportedly grief-stricken. Although likely not as much as the relatives of the victim.

A San Luis Obispo man responds to recent anti-bike columns by asking city officials to make it safer for people on bicycles, and for local residents to spare a few moments for the safety of cyclists.

Sad news from Fresno, where a bicyclist was killed by a suspect drunk hit-and-run driver.

A tragic find, as a bike rider discovered a young woman’s body in the water along a Sunnyvale bike trail.

Life is even cheaper in Napa, where a 77-year old woman got three years probation and had her license permanently revoked for the hit-and-run death of a popular cyclist.

A Boston website says Marin County’s West Ridgecrest road up Mt. Tamalpais may be one of the best bike rides in the US.

An Oak Park man in riding his bicycle around Sacramento, collecting garbage and scraps to turn into compost. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

 

National

The Wall Street Journal says gadget obsessed cyclists need a data detox, while a writer for Slate complains that he doesn’t even know how turn off the tech and ride his bike for fun anymore. Seriously, turn everything off, and for the rest of this month, just ride for the fun of it. You might even remember why you love bicycling again.

NPR looks at automakers attempts to woo members of Gen Z, who have shown little interest in owning cars so far.

California Congressman Tom McClintock discusses his bill to allow bicycles back in wilderness areas.

A Denver weekly looks at how the murder of mountain biking legend Mike Rust was finally solved, seven years after he disappeared; his killer was found guilty of 1st degree murder last week, along with a host of other charges.

A Colorado newspaper applauds plans to make the town more walkable and bikeable, but worries about the loss of 162 downtown parking places. Because everyone knows people never walk or bike to go shopping. Right?

A group from my hometown is asking the public for another 75 bicycles so they can donate 400 bikes to kids for the holidays. And they can drop off those bikes at the shop where I bought my first bike, back when dinosaurs still walked the earth.

A Chicago letter writer suggests everyone walking on the river walk should wear a bike helmet, since city hall somehow ignored his letter demanding that bikes to be banned from the path.

Still no explanation for what drove a bike-riding doctor to attack his neighbor, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul.

The surgeon who treated Bono after his Central Park bicycling crash was found dead in his New York apartment with a knife plunged into his chest, the victim of an apparent suicide.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 79-year old Georgia man is riding from Northern California to Atlanta.

Seriously? A Tallahassee FL writer welcomes dockless bikeshare to town, but worries where people will park their cars to use them.

 

International

A Canadian cycling magazine calls on the country to adopt a National Cycling Strategy. Something you’re not likely to ever see in the US.

The war on bikes continues, as someone vandalized a bike belonging to the mayor of Victoria, British Columbia for the second time; she doesn’t want to believe it has anything to do with her support for bike lanes.

Roughly 180,000 Quebec residents ride their bikes all through the winter, despite the cold and snow. Tell that to the next person who tells you Angelenos won’t ride their bikes to work year-round.

This is what happens when you install a temporary bike lane around a Toronto construction site, but don’t do anything to accommodate people on foot.

Ed Sheeran gets back on a bike in London for the first time since he broke both arms in a crash, even if it did have training wheels.

Shades of Children of the Corn. A British town is installing bollards designed to look like little children, and stare back at drivers to get their attention. Thanks again to David Wolfberg.

A Bulgarian expat has formed a volunteer crew to rescue damaged and abandoned dockless bikeshare bikes in Singapore; he may have his work cut out for him.

A Pakistani woman became the first woman to ride a bike up Mt. Kilimanjaro.

An Indian man is riding across the country to encourage people to ride to work.

 

Competitive Cycling

A freshly bearded cycling great Bradley Wiggins craps out in his attempt to make the British rowing team, after mistakenly lowering his oars in a “schoolboy error.”

The very busy Peter Flax has written a great profile of lifelong bike racer Bill Elliston, saying that Elliston, while never quite fast enough to make the pros, “represents much that is pure and good in the sport of bike racing.”

 

Finally…

Kylo Ren is one of us. We may have to worry about distracted drivers, but at least we don’t have dodge zebras.

And Australia chose their bird of the year even though it attacks bicyclists.

Or maybe because of it.

 

Morning Links: Crowdfunding campaign for injured cyclist, and a pre-Thanksgiving bike video trifecta

Before we get started, let me offer my apologies to anyone who sent me links to the stories below.

With all that’s been going on, I’m afraid I’ve lost any record of who sent me what. So please accept my thanks in advance; I am truly grateful to everyone who forwards bike stories for this site, today or any other day.

Photo of Fred Mackey taken from his GoFundMe page; see below.

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Sometimes I wish the people fighting traffic safety projects in Los Angeles could see the damage done by careless — and too often, cowardly — drivers.

Case in point, this crowdfunding page for yet another bike rider who was seriously injured by a hit-and-run driver while crossing La Brea Ave.

The campaign to help Fred Mackey pay the medical expenses his insurance won’t cover has raised a little over $3,000 of the $25,000 goal after four days.

I sort of met Fred while he was in the hospital; after learning about his crash, I popped in to say hi since he was on the same floor as my wife. Unfortunately, he was busy with his doctors at the time, and by the time I could make it back a few days later, his bed was occupied by an Asian woman who was wondering what the hell I was doing there.

And yes, there’s something seriously wrong with a country where people have to go online to beg for money to pay their medical bills.

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CiclaValley offers what amounts to a painful Gravel Mob gag reel.

He follows that up with a compendium of bad drivers he encountered while riding to work.

Then again, looking for bad drivers in Los Angeles is like looking for ice in Greenland.

Except the bad drivers aren’t going anywhere.

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A foul-mouthed excuse for a comedian seems to think running bike riders off the road is amusing, and that share the road means bike riders have to get the hell out of his way.

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As long as we’re watching videos, let’s make the short leap from the seriously unfunny to a serious whackjob convinced LA is intentionally creating traffic jams to force drivers out of their cars and onto bikes and transit.

Unfortunately, though, he’s not the only one who believes this crap; you’ll find similar comments on almost any news story about or bike lanes or road diets.

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Local

Maybe LA is finally getting the message that it’s cheaper to fix broken bike lanes than pay out multi-million dollar settlements to injured bike riders, since they repaved bike lanes in Lincoln Heights and Eagle Rock last week.

The Daily Breeze looks at the arrival of the LimeBike dockless bikeshares in Watts, San Pedro and Wilmington.

As we mentioned before, Pasadena is threatening to put a stop to the popular Rose Bowl Loop rides by installing a number of stop signs around the route. Something tells me they’ll also park a patrol car next to each one to enforce it, too.

Glendora and South Pasadena are establishing Bicycle Friendly Business Districts, as The Source confirms something we’ve said many times — that bikes are good for business.

Cities in the western San Gabriel Valley are developing a $1 billion wish list for projects they want to install with funding originally set aside for the cancelled 710-N freeway tunnel.

Sad news from Santa Clarita, where a coach for the SCV Mountain Bike Team was killed in a car collision Monday night.

Long Beach is beginning work on reconfiguring Bellflower Blvd to remove parking spaces and add bike lanes.

 

State

Dockless bikeshare is being held up in San Diego due to the city’s exclusive contract with the under-performing DecoBike bikeshare.

San Diego is moving forward with plans for a $140 million replacement for a Mission Bay bridge; the new bridges will include bike lanes and space for walking.

Continuing our all San Diego theme, a kindhearted stranger donated a new bike to an Imperial Beach man after the one he used as his only means of transportation was stolen.

 

National

The US is now an outlier when it comes to traffic safety, with some of the deadliest roads in the industrialized world.

Chances are, you already know making carbon bikes isn’t an environmentally friendly process, but Outside is here to remind you that your carbon mountain bike ain’t exactly green.

Bicycling offers tips on how to deal with road raging drivers. In my experience, the best move is to remove yourself from the roadway; pull up onto the sidewalk if possible, preferably in a public place. And make a public display of taking a photo of the driver and his or her license plate.

Forbes looks at the best holiday gifts for women cyclists.

Bike Snob asks if riding with headphones is really such a big deal.

This may be LA’s future, as a Seattle paper looks at some of the strange places people have left dockless bikeshare bikes in the city.

A Colorado bike shop is teaching life skills to low-income kids and people with disabilities, while providing them with low-cost or free bikes.

Seriously, who the hell would steal St. Paul MN’s egg-shaped, solar-powered literary arts ebike and trailer?

Detroit is about to get a spanking new world-class velodrome.

The parents of one of the victims of the New York bike path terrorist attack are suing the city for not installing safety barriers until after the attack. Meanwhile, prosecutors have filed 22 charges against the attacker, including eight possible death penalty charges.

The Pennsylvania bike rider who served 20 months behind bars for obstructing traffic has filed an appeal, claiming the judge in the case was biased and didn’t understand the law.

Now that’s more like it. An unlicensed Florida driver got 12 years for the hit-and-run death of a bike rider, after getting his girlfriend to claim she was behind the wheel. Note to women: If your boyfriend, husband and/or significant other wants you to take the fall for his crimes, get a new one.

 

International

A road raging Canadian bike rider is facing weapons charges after threatening a couple in a car with a knife.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole and vandalized a handicapped British boy’s specialized adaptive bike.

An English man gets nine and a half years for plowing into a bike rider during a Jack Daniels-fueled rampage, after telling his girlfriend he was cheating on her, followed by carjacking a woman’s car.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a truck driver walks after seriously injuring a bike rider, despite his admission that he was “avoidably distracted.”

drunk driver who was high on coke got three and a half years for the death of a British bike rider in a head-on crash while he was speeding to get another drink. Although that’s still just a fraction of what it should have been.

American cities can’t even get Vision Zero right, yet Sweden is already Moving Beyond Vision Zero to encourage safe bicycling and walking while designing roadways to make fatal collisions impossible.

A Norwegian researcher concludes ebikes are good exercise, while a Swedish retail company predicts they will be the country’s Christmas gift of the year.

Paris vows to reimburse customers as the city’s famed Velib bikeshare system grinds to a halt due to a series of strikes.

Once again, a bike maker is determined to demonstrate just how sexist the industry is, as Italian brand Pinarello’s new ads for their forthcoming ebike fall flat. To put it mildly.

Don’t sexually harass a woman on the street while riding by on your bike like this Aussie jerk, especially if she has her camera on. Or, better yet, just don’t do it. Period.

 

Competitive Cycling

No, you didn’t win that pro cycling contract by pedaling inside; a young New Zealand cyclist won the Zwift competition to join the Team Dimension Data under 23 team.

In the best news of the day, Italian cyclist Claudi Cretti is back on her bike, just four months after she suffered major head injuries in a crash at the Giro Rosa.

 

Finally…

If you lose your cellphone while stealing a bike, probably not the best idea to walk into the police station to ask if they’d found it. Who needs headphones when you can ride with your own piano?

And sometimes a dog’s best defense is just being too fat to attack anyone.

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On a personal note, let me offer my sincere thanks to everyone who has expressed their best wishes for my wife’s recovery from her recent surgery; it’s helped get us through a difficult few days.

And if you’re riding this weekend, remember that drivers will be far more focused on shopping and finding a finding parking space than watching out for you. So ride safely and defensively; I want to see you all back here next week.

 

Update: Bike rider killed by allegedly drunk hit-and-run driver in Koreatown

Yet another person has been the victim of an — allegedly — drunk coward who fled the scene of the crash.

According to multiple sources, the victim was riding south on Western Ave near San Marino Street when a driver struck him from behind just before 2 am.

The 26-year old driver fled the scene, but was arrested nearby after police found a white sedan with damage consistent with the collision. Fox 11 reports he was speeding at the time of the crash, and was found in his car obviously intoxicated.

The victim has been publicly identified only as a Latino in his 50s. He died at the scene.

He appears to have been riding a mountain bike with reflectors, but no lights are visible in the news reports.

A street view shows a four lane road on Western with center left turn lanes in both directions at San Marino, and no bike lanes. And little or nothing to slow a speeding drunk at that hour.

This is the 52nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 23rd in Los Angeles County; it’s also the eighth in the City of LA.

At least 19 of those 52 fatal crashes have been hit-and-runs.

Update: The victim has been identified as 48-year-old Los Angeles resident Mario Calderon.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Mario Calderon and his loved ones.

Morning Links: 6th Street meeting draws complaints, hit-and-run BOLO alert, and bike to the World Series

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports on Saturday’s neighborhood meeting to discuss much-needed safety improvements on 6th Street.

Despite the unanimous support of the local neighborhood council, as well as other area councils and groups, Ryu appears to be dismissing calls for a 6th Street road diet to improve safety.

Instead, he has come back with his own plan, which would remove parking and add one or more left turn bays. Which would only increase the speeding local residents blame for the numerous crashes and multiple deaths on what should be a relatively quiet commuter street.

The people I’ve heard from have described the meeting as a waste of time, saying Ryu’s staffers seemed angry and tried to steer people towards his plan, rather than listening to area residents, as the councilmember has promised to do.

It’s hard to imagine Ryu approving any road diet after the disaster in Playa del Rey, on 6th Street or anywhere else.

But it’s also hard to imagine Vision Zero succeeding if he won’t listen to the concerns of the people in his district, and take concrete steps to improve safety for everyone.

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The LAPD has sent out an alert to be on the lookout for a hit-and-run driver who severely injured a man riding his bicycle on Victory Blvd near Van Alden earlier this month.

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Yes, you can ride your bike to the World Series at Dodger Stadium.

Just don’t expect a bike valet when you get there.

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Adding insult to injury, Belgian pro cyclist Jan Bakelants was lifted to safety after tumbling over a guard rail and failing into a ditch during the Il Lombardia race earlier this month. Only to be run over by a race moped after they laid him down on the roadway.

Twenty-year old French cyclist Mathieu Riebel was killed in a head-on collision with an ambulance while competing in the Tour of New Caledonia last Friday.

Columbian Tour de France contender Rigoberto Uran says forget fame, he just loves racing his bike.

Cycling Tips looks at the whys behind China’s new WorldTour race, and what the future holds for the event.

Researchers try to quantify what it means to suffer while racing a bike.

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Local

The LAPD has arrested a woman suspected of being the bike-riding North Hollywood arsonist.

LA’s Bahati Foundation, founded by former national crit champ Rahsaan Bahati, is raffling a Raleigh ebike worth $3,199. And no, a raffle is not the same as an auction.

The semi-regular Draft Meetup is back at Pure Cycles this Thursday, offering bike talk combined with free food and beer.

Pasadena’s Metro bikeshare has seen nearly 14,000 rides since it opened in July.

West Covina is holding a meeting tomorrow to unveil their draft Active Transportation Master Plan. Although they might have better luck if they rescheduled for a night that didn’t conflict with the World Series.

No surprise here. The parents of 13-year old Ciara Smith have filed a lawsuit against Metro, as well as the bus driver, Los Angeles County and Caltrans, after she was killed by a bus as she rode her bike along PCH in Redondo Beach last May.

 

State

The man charged with stabbing two people as they looked for a stolen bicycle in Coachella is still being held without bail, and will undergo a psych evaluation.

San Francisco Streetsblog calls for a strong statewide law prohibiting drivers from harassing bicyclists. As the story notes, Los Angeles has an anti-harassment ordinance that allows riders to sue in civil court, but it has proven to be difficult to use. And it’s no use if the incident occurs outside the city limits.

Danville police are looking for what may be a single hit-and-run driver who crashed into three bike riders in two separate incidents on the same road 40 minutes apart.

Napa is planning to widen the main road leading into town, but only intends to place a bike lane in one direction; the city says they need to wait until a bike and pedestrian bridge is built to accommodate riders, even though plans for the bridge haven’t even come up for a vote yet.

 

National

Sgt. La David Johnson, one of the four US soldiers killed in an ambush in Niger, was famed for his BMX stunts.

Restock your bunker, and gird yourself for the coming bikeshare wars.

Bicycling tells you how to make a left turn.

Another candidate for the parent of the year award. A Montana woman could soon be staying at the same detention center where she works, after she intentionally chased down and ran over her boyfriend as he tried to escape on his bicycle after a fight, with her four young kids in the car watching the whole thing.

An 83-year old Michigan driver will avoid jail time in the death of one bike rider and injuring another, after he was sentenced to 1,000 hours of community service and forbidden to ever drive again. Once again raising the issue of how to get older people off the road after they’ve lost the ability to drive safely. And before they kill someone.

A state senator says a pair of New York bikes lanes are continuing to cause crashes. After all, it couldn’t be the fault of careless or distracted drivers who can’t manage to follow the lines on the street banging their cars together.

A health columnist for the New York Times says riding a bike without a properly fitted helmet is stupid.

New York’s Prospect Park is going permanently carfree next year. I’d like to say maybe there’s hope for LA’s Griffith Park, but that would imply that Los Angeles would finally coming to grips with its automotive addiction, which doesn’t seem to be happening anytime soon.

Baltimore police are investigating a series of attacks by groups of teens who swarm bicyclists and steal their bikes.

 

International

A Montreal cop is on trial for fatally backing over a bike rider when he tried to stop the victim for riding the wrong way on a one-way street.

The BBC talks with LA’s own Phil Gaimon about his new book Draft Animals.

A British bicyclist suffered a massive hematoma on his hip after being knocked off his bike by a road raging driver. Actually, his hip looks pretty much like mine did following my run-in with the beachfront bike path bees.

The governor of a Nigerian state has ordered truck drivers who break traffic laws to see a shrink if they cause a crash. Maybe we could offer that here instead of traffic school.

Nothing crazy about a first-time unicyclist pledging to ride across New Zealand’s largest farm to raise funds for mental health issues.

Singapore is planning to fight congestion and smog by capping the number of vehicles on its streets. A solution that makes so much sense that we can rest assured it will never be tried here. Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the heads-up.

A crowdfunding campaign is attempting to raise nearly $4,000 to send the body of a world travelling bike rider back home to China after he was killed in an Argentine car crash. Thanks to The Bicycle Wars for the link.

Nothing like a little North Korean propaganda to start your day, revealing that women “is forbidden to ride a Bicycle” because a “skirt should always cover the knees, and wear pants ladies is impossible.” Though you’d think a piece authored by someone named Bill Cooke would demonstrate a somewhat better grasp of the English language.

 

Finally…

Just because you’re undead doesn’t mean you can’t ride a bike — or get attacked by a drunk tourist. You too can have your very own 3D-printed Slovakian e-mountain bike for the low, low price of just $24,000.

And this is why Kardashians shouldn’t bike after drinking.

 

Update: Man killed in rear-end collision in Santa Monica while riding on LA County’s killer highway

Once again, someone has been killed riding a bicycle on PCH.

According to the Daily News, a man in his 20s was riding north on the 200 block of Pacific Coast Highway around 7 pm when he was struck from behind.

A press release from the Santa Monica Police Department places the initial call at 7:03 pm.

The victim died at the scene. He has not been publicly identified pending notification of next of kin.

No word on whether he was using lights at the time of the crash, which came nearly 45 minutes after sunset.

The driver initially fled the scene, but returned shortly later, which should be considered hit-and-run, but probably won’t be. Police are investigating why the driver failed to stop after the crash.

The person driving, who has not been identified in any way, is not currently suspected of being impaired; no word on whether distraction was involved, or why the driver failed to see someone on a bike directly in front of them.

A street view shows a six-lane highway with a center left turn lane, where drivers frequently exceed the 45 mph speed limit.

Anyone with information on the case was urged to call Investigators Pace or Olson at 310/458-8954; or call the SMPD at 310/458-8491.

At least 13 people have been killed riding bicycles on PCH in Los Angeles County since 2005; eight of those have been killed on the deadly northern section of the highway running through Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades and Malibu.

This collision occurred roughly across the street from where Erin Galligan was killed while riding home from work in a 2012 hit-and-run; that driver still hasn’t been caught.

This is the 51st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 22nd in Los Angeles County; he’s also the first bike rider to be killed in Santa Monica since Galligan’s death.

Update: The victim has been identified as 23-year old Kazumasa Nozaki

Still no word on what may have led to the crash.

Update 2: 

I received the following email from Carrie Wick, who was one of the first people on the scene after the crash. She reports the driver did not return of his own accord, as the police suggested, and that the police have not been forthcoming about the crash. 

I am contacting you regarding a fatal hit and run incident my friend Kinya Claiborne and I witnessed on PCH Sundaynight where a 23-year-old pedestrian/ bicyclist named Kazumasa Nozaki was struck from the rear and killed by a driver who fled the scene. Perhaps you’re interested in looking into the incident.

Kinya and I were traveling southbound down PCH on October 15 around 7pm, when we noticed debris and a bike in the roadway along with a pedestrian who was laid flat in the east-northbound lane. The victim had significant head trauma and his body was bleeding and distorted. We were the first responders on the scene to provide aid to the victim, who was non-responsive and we called 911 for assistance.

There were several other witnesses including two men who were driving directly behind the driver who struck the pedestrian. They followed the driver, who fled the scene in a white BMW, for 5-10 minutes down PCH honking their horn in an attempt to get the driver to stop. As they were following the driver the witnesses called 911 to report the hit and run, providing the driver’s license plate number and location of the driver. The witnesses took pictures of the car and returned to the scene to provide their statement and evidence in person directly to the police.

There was also a couple on the scene who were driving northbound on PCH and witnessed the bicycle flying in the air when the pedestrian was struck from behind. They also provided their statement to the police on the scene.

There are a lot of inaccuracies being reported. The LAPD/SMPD statement implies the driver fled the scene and returned on his own vs. a hit and run, where the driver immediately fled the scene of a fatal collision. An officer on the scene announced, “We got him”, from the men tracking down the driver and the reporting of the license plate and location to the police.

Also, LAPD/SMPD have not acknowledged any of the witnesses or their statements, including the men who witness the hit and run, tracked down the driver, reported it via 911 and provided a statement to the police on the scene. Authorities are acting like the witnesses and hit and run incident never existed as evident in the press release issued by SMPD on October 16.

It seems as though the LAPD and SMPD have taken a lax approach with completing a thorough investigation and have clearly omitted key facts and witness reports from the fatal hit and run incident. This man does not have a voice any longer and can’t fight for himself, so we will try to on his behalf.

She also reports that the bike was so badly mangled from the impact that it was impossible to tell if he was using lights and reflectors. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Kazumasa Nozaki and his loved ones.

Morning Links: Marin driver arrested for swerving into 4 cyclists, and traffic deaths up in US, including bicyclists

Call it attempted murder.

In just the latest horrifying attack on the streets, four cyclists participating in the Jensie Gran Fondo of Marin were injured when a driver allegedly swerved his truck into them.

The pickup driver fled the scene after smashing into them from behind, in an attack that witnesses described as intentional.

One of the riders is in stable condition after suffering major injuries; the other three were not seriously injured.

It’s probably not what any of them expected when they signed up to ride with cycling legend Jens Voigt.

Police later arrested 21-year old Novato resident Aaron Michael Paff, an off-duty maintenance worker for the Marin Municipal Water District.

He was taken into custody roughly 12 hours after the attack, and released on $50,000 bond. There was no word on possible charges as of Sunday night.

However, this should be a case of assault with a deadly weapon, at the bare minimum.

Dr. Christopher Thompson got five years in state prison for a similar assault, in which he intentionally brake-checked a pair of riders on Mandeville Canyon Road in 2008.

Photo of suspect vehicle from CHP. Thanks to everyone who let me know about this case.

………

It shouldn’t surprise anyone to learn that our streets are getting even deadlier.

In the latest report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, traffic fatalities shot up another 5.6% in the US last year, coming on the heels of an 8.4% increase the year before.

According to the report, there was an increase in almost every category, from pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists, to DUIs and day versus night crashes.

A total of 37,461 people were killed on American streets last year, up from 35,485 the year before.

Four hundred ninety-two pedestrians lost their lives, the highest figure since 1990. And 840 bicyclists were killed, a 1.3% increase and the most since 1991.

It’s worth noting, especially in light of the next item, that an average of over 102 people died in crashes in the US every day — dwarfing the 58 killed in Las Vegas last week.

But no one is holding vigils. No one is sending thoughts and prayers.

And hardly anyone even seems to notice.

Or care.

………

Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson has written a hard-hitting piece comparing gun violence with the violence on our streets.

In the first instance, Americans have decided that mass shootings are a reasonable and acceptable cost of being able to easily and legally obtain weapons of virtually any kind. In the second, Californians have decided that individual killings of cyclists are a reasonable and acceptable cost for being able to drive as fast as possible to get where they want to go.

Whether or not you agree with his premise, it’s worth the read. Because this is a conversation our country will have to have sooner or later.

And it’s already a lot later than it should be.

………

A Belgian cyclist is lucky to walk away after flipping over a barrier at the Giro di Lombardia, as Vincenzo Nibali takes his 50th career win.

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Local

An LA company presents its vision for a four-mile section of the LA River, calling it the LA River Gateway.

One letter writer in the LA Times asks if drivers who object to bike lanes have a better solution, while another says traffic has always been bad in Playa del Rey, and it’s not the bike lanes’ fault.

 

State

New bicycle wayfinding signs go up in Highland.

The Southern California Association of Governments has approved nearly $10 million in funding for active transportation projects in the Coachella Valley.

Ventura County approves construction of bike lanes along Potrero Road near Lake Sherwood.

Sad news from Arroyo Grande, where a woman was killed while riding her bike on the popular Corbett Canyon Road; the driver played a variation of the universal Get Out of Jail Free card, claiming he couldn’t see her because the sun was in his eyes. Even though admitting something like that should be a confession, not an alibi. Thanks to Jeffrey Fylling for the heads-up.

A drunk San Francisco salmon cyclist was responsible for one of the 13 crashes involving GM’s driverless cars when he crashed into the car’s bumper after its human operator had stopped the vehicle.

 

National

A Spokane WA woman is considering a civil suit after a bike rider plowed into her on a multi-use trial; the rider yelled “hot pizza” as a warning, somehow thinking that would make her get out of his way. Pedestrians are unpredictable. So slow the f*** down around them and pass carefully. It’s not that hard.

Dozens of wounded vets joined 71-year old former president George W. Bush on his annual Warrior 100K mountain bike ride.

A driver in Austin TX says he only drove drunk, ran down a cyclist and fled the scene because there was a two-hour wait for a cab.

A Montana man is working to send bikes to Central America to be converted to pedal-powered machines.

An Indiana man rode 2,800 miles from Portland, Oregon to his home state, despite suffering from epilepsy and cerebral palsy.

Facing 35 years in prison for the drunken hit-and-run death of a bicyclist, a Kentucky driver tries to withdraw his guilty plea, saying it wasn’t fair because the crash wasn’t intentional. And the drinking — and getting behind the wheel afterwards — was probably an accident, too.

Over one thousand bicyclists turned out to ride with actor Patrick Dempsey at his annual fundraiser ride in Maine.

A New York man died a week after he was attacked with a hammer by five teenagers who were trying to steal his bike. We’ve said it many times before — no bicycle is worth your life, so just let it go.

A New York woman has died a month after she was struck by a drunk, unlicensed driver who plowed into several bicyclists who were on a fundraising ride. As I recall, there were allegation that this crash may have been intentional, as well.

A homeless man in Florida has been ruled mentally incompetent to stand trial in the stabbing death of a man who was riding his bike from Connecticut to Miami to propose to his girlfriend.

 

International

A Toronto columnist asks if there’s a war on cars in the city, why are drivers the only ones racking up a body count? It’s a question we should be asking here, and every city where drivers claim ownership of the streets. Which is pretty much everywhere. Thanks to Norm Bradwell for the link.

No bias here. Britain’s Daily Mail offers a breathless headline saying two pedestrians are killed or maimed by bicyclists every week. Then in smaller type mentions that there’s no information on who was at fault, and that it still amounts to less than 1% of pedestrian injuries each year on British roads.

Caught on video: A road raging London driver loses it because a bike rider had the audacity to be in front of him.

A London priest is urging his parishioners to pray to stop a bikeway from being installed in front of the church, claiming it would do more harm that the German Luftwaffe during the Battle of Britain.

Caught on video too: A British man learns why you don’t ride under crossing gates.

A man in the UK rode his bike 450 miles through France and Great Britain to deliver a petition to the prime minister’s office to cancel Brexit.

A new Scottish study shows riding a bike on bad roads for as little as 16 minutes is enough to cause nerve damage in the hands and arms. Which means that most LA bike riders could have trouble just picking up a pencil.

An Australian state supreme court justice is one of us, too.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be a boat. Any band can travel by bike between gigs, but how many perform along the way?

And if you’re going to suffer a heart attack while riding, do it in front of a restaurant full of medical professionals.

 

Update: 57-year old Hemet woman left to die in San Jacinto hit-and-run

Yet another bike rider has been killed by a heartless hit-and-run driver, left to die on the side of a road just outside San Jacinto in Riverside County.

According to the Press-Enterprise, the victim was found on lying on the eastbound side of the Ramona Expressway, about 590 feet east of Alessandro Avenue, and pronounced dead at 6:26 am.

She was identified as 57-year old Hemet resident Vivian Thomas.

There’s no word on how long she may have been there, or if she might have survived her injuries if the driver had stopped and called for help, as required by law.

Let alone basic human decency.

If and when the hit-and-run driver is caught, he or she should face a 2nd degree murder charge for making a conscious decision to let the victim die. But probably won’t.

This is the 49th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth in Riverside County.

Seventeen of those SoCal deaths have been the result of hit-and-run.

Update: The Press-Enterprise reports Thomas was struck from behind by a Chevrolet or GMC truck or SUV. She had been dead about six hours when she was found, placing the time of the crash sometime around or before midnight. 

Anyone with information is urged to call the CHP San Gorgonio Pass office at 951/769-2000.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Vivian Thomas and all her loved ones.

 

Update: Bike rider killed in Fountain Valley hit-and-run

Yet another bike rider has been killed by a heartless coward who fled the scene, this time in Fountain Valley.

According to multiple sources, 41-year old Fountain Valley resident Bihn Ngo was riding a mountain bike north on Brookhurst Street just south of Ellis Ave when he was struck at 12:54 am.

He was reportedly riding in the curb lane when he was struck from behind and thrown 50 to 60 feet into a parked car.

The driver fled north on Brookhurst, and was last seen turning right onto Ellis.

Police are looking for a red 1990s Ford Mustang with damage to the front end. Anyone with information is urged to call the Fountain Valley Police DepartKent at 714/593-4485.

This is the 42nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth in Orange County.

It’s also the second fatal hit-and-run in Fountain Valley in the last three weeks, following the death of popular Orange County runner Juan Garcia; an arrest was made in that case.

Update: According to KTLA-5, 25-year old Huntington Beach resident Justin German was arrested later the same day after a tip from someone who recognized the car. Thanks to Peter for the heads-up.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Bihn Ngo and his loved ones.

 

Update: Van Nuys bike rider killed in double hit-and-run Wednesday night

Heartbreaking news from Van Nuys, where a woman was left to die by a pair of heartless cowards Wednesday night.

According to multiple sources, the victim was struck by a speeding driver around 11:23 pm at the intersection of Sepulveda Boulevard and Stagg Street, and thrown nearly 120 feet by the force of the impact.

The driver, later identified as 24-year old Van Nuys resident Erik Limon, fled the scene, leaving his victim lying unprotected in the street.

Another driver ran over her as she was lying in the street; that driver also fled without stopping.

The victim, who has been identified only as a woman in her 50s, died at the scene.

Police suspect her bicycle was stuck under Limon’s car as he fled, and disposed of later; as of this writing, it has still not been found.

His car was recovered, and he was arrested at his home around 3:15 Thursday afternoon.

The second driver, reportedly a woman in an older gold Camry, is still at large.

KABC-7 reports the victim was in a crosswalk when she was struck by Limon’s car. However, according to KCBS-2, she may have been riding against traffic.

Anyone who finds a damaged bicycle in the area, or who has other information about the crash, is urged to call the LAPD’s Valley Traffic Division at 818/644-8000.

There is an automatic $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the driver, or in this case, drivers, in any fatal hit-and-run in the City of LA.

This is the 40th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 19th in Los Angeles County. It’s also the sixth in the City of Los Angeles.

Fourteen of those SoCal deaths have been the result of hit-and-runs, half of those in LA County.

Update: Surveillance video on KNBC-4 shows the victim riding northbound in the southbound lane, where she was struck by the Limon’s car as he turned right. Despite earlier reports, he does not appear to be speeding at the time of the crash.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and her loved ones.

 

Morning Links: Camarillo hit-and-run driver, more on Governors’ bike safety study, and a bicycle bike workstand

Another day, another heartless hit-and-run coward.

Camarillo police are searching for the driver who fled the scene after rear-ending a man riding his bike on Lewis Road near Dawson Drive early Sunday morning, leaving the victim with major injuries.

Unfortunately, there’s no description of the hit-and-run driver or suspect vehicle.

Anyone with information is urged to call Senior Deputy Sam Dominguez at 805/388-5146.

………

More on the new study we mentioned yesterday from the Governors Highway Safety Association.

The report called for better infrastructure, enforcement and education, along with better training for in state and local bike laws for police.

The study was also just the latest to name Florida as the most dangerous state to ride a bike.

Meanwhile, the next time someone criticizes Vision Zero without understanding what they’re talking about, you can point them to this newly updated Policy Platform from the Los Angeles Vision Zero Alliance.

………

Now this is a creative solution.

A British bike mechanic adapted his bicycle into a mobile workstand to create the ultimate fully mobile bike repair shop.

 

………

Mark your calendar for the 2017 South Bay Cycling Awards, aka Wanky Awards, at the Strand Brewing Company in Torrance on October 14th.

Cycling in the South Bay has a list of this year’s nominees, as well as past winners.

………

Cycling Weekly offers highlights of Thursday’s stage 6 of the Vuelta, where American Tejay van Garderen remained in the GC hunt, despite suffering a pair of crashes.

An Aussie Olympic track cyclist was arrested and charged with six counts of selling ecstacy; Jack Bobridge had retired from racing last year after winning silver in team pursuit in the 2012 and 2016 games.

Russia’s anti-doping agency has banned marathon cyclist Alexei Medvedev for two years for using performance enhancing drugs. But seriously, the doping era is over, right?

And a special congratulations to eight-year old Taylor Rungaitis; the Simi Valley 3rd grader is now a world champion after winning her age group at the UCI 2017 BMX World Challenge in Rock Hill SC.

……….

Local

CiclaValley looks forward to those promised bicycling improvements to 7th Street in DTLA. As does pretty much anyone else who has the misfortune of riding it.

If you’re going to have a heart attack while riding your bike, do it in front of a Pasadena fire station.

Hermosa Beach approved its first comprehensive planning document in 36 years, calling for a citywide network of bike lanes and mixed-use development in the downtown area.

Sad to see Long Beach’s Seafarer chapel go; it will be torn down next week to make way for an off-ramp and bike path for the new bridge being built to replace the aging Gerald Desmond bridge.

The Downey Bicycle Coalition is hosting an Art Party Ride this Saturday.

 

State

A bicyclist and a motorcyclist were both critically injured in San Diego yesterday morning when the bike rider reportedly crossed over the path of the motorcyclist to make a left against the light.

A 38-year old San Bernardino man was arrested as the so-called “Bicycle Bandit,” accused of riding his bicycle to set eight fires in an Bernardino and Highland, including a brush fire that burned 700 acres.

Ventura County officials are drawing plans for a three-mile bike lane on a stretch of Potrero Road through Hidden Valley that’s popular with cyclists.

A recovering addict says he’ll never get the chance to thank the officer who arrested him in 2014 for changing his life by treating him like a human being, after the off-duty Modesto police sergeant was killed riding his bicycle Tuesday evening.

San Francisco bicyclists threaten to boycott businesses who demanded that a new bikeshare station be removed because the businesses weren’t consulted before it was installed.

San Francisco riders criticize plans for a protected bike lane that ignores the mixing zones at intersections.

Volunteers with the Petaluma Police Department fix up unclaimed bicycles and donate them to local nonprofit organizations.

 

National

A coming bike industry report says ebikes are the industry’s fasted growing category, older Americans account for 1/3 of all new bicyclists, Latinos ride more than any other racial group and low-income people ride more than anyone else. So much for the myth of the rich, elite cyclists.

Portland completes a 9-mile, $4.5 million bikeway through the city, although it frequently jogs to side streets to preserve street parking in commercial districts. So even in bike friendly Portland, they prefer parking spaces to customers on bicycles. Even though the former can be converted to much better uses.

Oregon police arrested the woman who fled the scene after demanding the bike rider she hit pay for the damages to her car. But not until she returned to the scene of the crime, crashed into a tree and ran over her passenger.

The kickers for the Oregon State University football team are two of us, riding the streets of Corvallis on their new tandem bicycle. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

How to explore Chicago on a bikeshare bike.

Heartwarming story from Minnesota, where a five-year old girl born with no arms rides a bicycle for the first time thanks to a custom-made prosthetic device.

Michigan police have identified the hit-and-run driver who killed a bike-riding nun, but no charges have been filed yet. The suspect was found after filing a false police report that he had hit a deer.

NIMBY Massachusetts homeowners literally say Not In My Back Yard to a proposed bike path.

An 84-year old man recalls winning a 1949 boy’s bike race in Valdosta GA after a picture of his victory unexpectedly appears in the local paper.

 

International

A Canadian bike rider has his journey across the country halted when someone stole his locked bike and all his gear in front of a Winnipeg Walmart; however, local residents have been contributing to replace it.

The husband of the London woman killed by a brakeless fixie rider calls for changes in the law to treat bike riders like motorists when someone is killed or injured by a cyclist. Someone should tell him most killer drivers walk away with just a light caress on the wrist.

A London bike courier explains why he rides brakeless. And why he’ll probably put one on his bike now.

The co-host of the Good Morning Britain TV show blew up at a bicycling advocate on yesterday’s show when he wasn’t satisfied with the answers to his questions. Meanwhile, a man on another show blasted a bicycle advocate for saying only a minority of riders break the law, while calling for all bicyclists to be registered.

An Australian driver claimed he was blinded by the sun when he plowed into a dozen cyclists while making a U-turn, injuring five riders, one critically. So why couldn’t he see the riders before he made his turn? Or if he was already blinded, why the hell would he make a U-turn when he can’t see where he was going?

 

Finally…

Probably not the best idea to steal a police bike minutes after being released on a shoplifting charge. Seriously, don’t stab your bike-riding former partner in crime in the butt just because he wants to go straight.

And that’s one sketchy DIY ebike.

But this one looks like a blast.

Literally.

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