Tag Archive for hit-and-run

Morning Links: New law should make hit-and-run vehicles easier to identify, and LA gets new cold brew coffee bike

Finally.

In a big step forward in the fight against hit-and-run drivers, Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill requiring all motor vehicles sold in the state to have temporary license plates when they roll off the lot.

Currently, drivers only have to display a small bill of sale, which can’t be read at a distance to identify a driver trying to flee the scene, or report them to the police for some other reason.

However, the question is whether the law will also apply to cars leased by brokers, where the actual title of the vehicle isn’t transferred, and drivers therefore aren’t required to register them. Which explains why you see so many expensive cars without license plates.

While the Times reports that consumer and civil rights advocates fear disaster when the law goes into effect in 2019, similar laws have been in effect in other states for decades without the sky falling.

Including Colorado, where I grew up and drove a number of cars with temporary plates until the regular license plates arrived in the mail, without incident.

Thanks to Lila Kalaf for the heads-up.

………

The Wall Street Journal asks if the Tour de France needs a financial fix to keep rich teams from dominating the race, as Team Sky did this year. Thanks to George Wolfberg for the link.

Sports Illustrated says the US women’s track cycling team should have an edge in the Rio Olympics, thanks to their new high-tech bicycles with the gearing on the left side.

Columbian cyclist Nairo Quintana pulls out of the Rio Olympics due to illness.

A Canadian Paralympian gets one of her two stolen bikes back in time for the Rio games.

Brit cyclist Emma Pooley says she ain’t gonna shake hands with no damn Russians if she wins gold in Rio. Wait, not even this one?

………

Local

LA is about to get a new cold brew coffee dispensing bike cart from a new Boyle Heights coffee company. Correction: I originally wrote this was the first coffee bike like this, but I was reminded this morning that The Wheelhouse has a coffee bike, and Bicycle Coffee has a bike at the Hollywood Farmer’s Market every week.

Downtown News names DTLA Bikes Downtown’s best bike shop; Just Ride LA was the runner-up. Speaking of which, Just Ride LA will host the LACBC’s next Sunday Funday ride on August 7th.

A Glendale street gets fresh Kermit with a 1.3 mile green bike lane on Sonora Ave.

A Pomona man accepts a plea of life without parole for murdering his girlfriend; he was arrested two days later while riding his bike, still carrying the bloody knife. Note: The story contains gruesome details of the crime, which you may not want to know. I’m still trying to get that image out of my head.

 

State

San Diego’s troubled bikeshare system may finally be getting new docking stations, even as efforts continue to remove to successful stations from the Pacific Beach boardwalk.

Double bad luck. After a Bakersfield bike rider suffers a broken leg in a hit-and-run, police say he was high at the time of the crash. And yes, biking under the influence is illegal in California.

The handlebar-mustachioed San Francisco Critical Mass rider who attacked a Zipcar with his bike lock got off with time served and three years probation.

Streetsblog offers photos from Oakland’s Pedalfest.

A Rio Linda cyclist was killed when he allegedly swerved into the path of a car; his riding partner was injured when the force of the crash knocked him into her.

 

National

The LA Times recommends a handful of backroads bike tours up and down the West Coast.

High times indeed. Writers for a marijuana magazine take a dope bike tour of the Left Coast.

An 81-year old Denver woman mysteriously dies just days after killing a 14-year old boy and seriously injuring his friend as they stood in a bike lane. After receiving news of her death, authorities magnanimously dropped all charges against her, rather than propping her up in the defendant’s chair before a jury of her peers.

Iowa’s governor says he plans to address traffic safety and bicycling fatalities in the next legislative session. Meanwhile, California’s current governor doesn’t seem to have even noticed the carnage on our streets.

A Boston bike rider got her stolen bike back after spotting it on Craigslist.

Evidently, a ten minute discussion of bike lanes by the Charlotte NC city council was too much for impatient Black Lives Matter activists in the audience.

Atlanta gets the nation’s first bidirectional bike intersection to accommodate two intersecting cycle tracks.

 

International

That’s one way to boost bike sales. Canadian bike shops are seeing an increase in sales from people buying bicycles to play Pokémon Go.

An Icelandic psychology professor says to go easy on the caffeine. They’ll get my oversized coffee mug when they pry it out of my cold, dead fingers.

Caught on video: A British cyclist catches the crash on his helmet cam when a driver pulls out in front of him during a high-speed descent.

Police in the UK are looking for a jerk on a bike who punched a woman driver in the face. Seriously, there’s never any excuse for violence, no matter what the driver did to piss you off. Although at least he had the courtesy to knock first.

A new Norwegian study says you’re safer riding in the summer months when more bike riders are out, because the safety in numbers effect really is true.

Does a backward letter reflect a backward approach to Aussie bike infrastructure?

Life is cheap in Singapore, where a taxi driver gets just two weeks in jail and a four year driving ban for fatally right-hooking a cyclist.

 

Finally…

Caught on video, too: Close calls don’t get any closer than this. Now you can finally build that Airstream-style DIY bicycle trailer you’ve always wanted.

And we may have to deal with piggish drivers, but actual pigs? Not so much.

 

Update: Long Beach bike rider killed in Saturday morning hit-and-run by driver of stolen car

KNBC-4 reported Saturday morning that a woman was killed in a hit-and-run wreck while riding her bicycle early that morning.

The collision occurred around 1:20 am in the 400 block of East Market Street.

According to an article posted today by the Long Beach Gazettes, the victim, who was not publicly named, was riding westbound with a friend in the center median on Market when she was struck by a speeding car.

Emergency personnel found her lying unconscious in the eastbound lane; she was transported to a local hospital where she was pronounced dead.

The driver was illegally passing another car when he or she struck the victim’s bike from behind before fleeing the scene.

Police later found the vehicle, a 2013 Kia Optima, abandoned 5300 block of Atlantic Avenue. The car, which had a smashed windshield and major front end damage, had been reported stolen in a carjacking the day before.

There’s no word on why the couple were riding in the painted center lane instead of in the traffic lane, where they presumably would have been protected by the car that was being passed.

Police are looking for four people who were reportedly in the the stolen car at the time of the crash. Anyone with information is urged to call Long Beach collision investigations detective Brian Watt at 562/570-5520; tips can also be reported online at www.lacrimestoppers.org.

This is the 48th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and 20th in Los Angeles County. And it’s at least the tenth fatal bike crash in Long Beach since 2010.

Update: The victim has been identified only as a white woman in her 40s, pending notification of next of kin.

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

Morning Links: First bikeshare station hits ground in DTLA; five bicyclists dead in horrific Michigan crash

Bikeshare really is coming to Los Angeles.

The first Metro Bike station has been installed at Union Station, the first of 65 planned for Downtown LA, with the system is scheduled to open on July 7th.

And hopefully, Pasadena, Hollywood and other areas throughout LA County in the not-too-distant future.

Although bicycling infrastructure has to catch up outside the Downtown area to provide a safe place to ride those bikes. Especially in Hollywood.

So who will be the first to come up with a good nickname for the system, like London’s Boris Bikes? Somehow, Eric Bikes just doesn’t have the same ring.

………

Horrific news from Michigan, as a Kalamazoo driver is under arrest for literally running away after plowing into a group of nine bicyclists.

The driver was reportedly operating his truck in erratic manner, nearly running over a bystander’s foot before he smashed into the riders from behind, killing five and injuring the other four, at least one critically.

He fled on foot following the crash, but was arrested a short distance away. Police had received calls about his dangerous driving for nearly 30 minutes before the collision.

Initial reports indicated some of the victims may be children, but later stories suggested it was a group of adults that frequently ride together.

There simply are no words to express the gut-wrenching heartbreak and tragedy of this needless disaster.

Thanks to Brenda Miller, Al Williams and Mike Wilkinson for the heads-up.

………

Pro cyclist Tom Danielson says his positive drug test is consistent with a contaminated supplement. Of course, after similar denials from Lance, Lloyd and Alberto, et al, any explanation begs credibility, truthful or not.

Meanwhile, human rights groups urge bike racing’s governing body to reject an application for a WorldTour license for the Bahrain Cycling Team, headed by a Bahraini prince accused of torture.

………

Local

LA County residents show strong support for funding bike and walking projects.

Streetsblog’s Damien Newton says the Expo Phase II bike path will be great if they ever finish it and get some badly needed signage.

Bernie Sanders crashed Sunday’s Coast ciclovía in Santa Monica, which celebrated the new Expo Line extension and Colorado Esplanade.

A Ride of Silence will be held this Saturday in honor of Rod Bennett, killed by a hit-and-run driver in Santa Clarita last month.

Empact Communities says protected bike lanes are coming to North Long Beach.

 

State

A Santa Ana woman shakes off a bike crash that left her in the hospital for two days in order to cast her vote for Sanders; thanks to David Wolfberg for the link.

The Central Valley’s NPR station says Fresno is safe for cyclists. Sort of.

With the outrage over the lenient sentence given a Stanford student for the rape of an unconscious woman, it’s worth noting that the rape was stopped, and the fleeing rapist caught, by a pair of bicyclists.

 

National

Sports Illustrated discovers gravel grinding.

How to plan an overnight bike trip for beginners.

Trek offers scholarships for women bike mechanics and assembly technicians.

More bighearted cops, as Texas police officers take up a collection to replace a boy’s stolen bicycle.

A red bicycle festooned with ribbons hangs as a memorial to Muhammad Ali over the former Louisville auditorium where his bike was stolen as a 12-year old, which set him on the path that would eventually make him The Greatest.

Bikeshare is coming to Buffalo NY this summer.

The New York Post says the fastest way across Midtown Manhattan is on two wheels, while a Staten Island writer bemoans those lawless cyclists who put innocent drivers at risk.

Two women who founded a New York-based shoe maker make their deliveries via the city’s Citi Bike bikeshare system.

A Philadelphia writer artfully dissects a paranoid anti-bike screed from a representative of the National Motorists Association, which serves to maintain automotive hegemony on our streets and preserve motorists’ right to keep killing people.

 

International

A Winnipeg cyclist catches an average of one close call on his GoPro every one and a half days.

A new London smartphone app automatically emails the city’s mayor whenever a cyclist presses a Bluetooth enabled button upon encountering a dangerous situation. We could use something like that here, but the sheer volume of emails would probably crash the City Hall server.

London’s Telegraph suggests ten cycling vacations that will make you a better bike rider.

New Zealand community members called for making Hi-Viz mandatory for bike-riding students after two were hit by cars six years ago. Because no one can expect drivers to actually pay attention to who might be on the road with them, right?

 

Finally…

If you’re going to trespass on someone else’s property by riding over to hug a big friendly dog, ask your mom for permission first. At least we only have to deal with angry LA drivers, and not road raging elephants.

And for everyone who wants to ride a bicycle for a living, how about spending all day biking around killing mosquitos?

Note to the Midland Daily News: Why the hell would anyone be alarmed by a bike rider in a fluorescent T-shirt, anyway?

 

Morning Links: Bike collisions down across LA, hit-and-runs up in IE, and special offer on a new lighted backpack

How about some good news for a change?

According to LAPD statistics presented at yesterday’s bike liaison meeting, bike-involved collisions are down dramatically throughout Los Angeles compared to this time last year.

  • 49% reduction in bike collisions in the Valley Traffic Division, with serious injuries down 83%
  • 18% reduction in bike collisions in the Central Traffic Division
  • 30% reduction in bike collision in the South Traffic Division
  • No stats were available from West Traffic.

No reason was given for the sudden improvement in bike safety; as one officer said, it might just be luck.

But it’s a good way to start the year.

………

Meanwhile, things aren’t looking as good in the Inland Empire.

Hit-and-run collisions involving pedestrians are up 73% in San Bernardino County and 51% in Riverside County over the last five years, while hit-and-runs involving cyclists are up 34% and 40%, respectively.

………

An Anaheim bike rider was critically injured in a collision while crossing South Beach Blvd Thursday evening.

Let’s all hope he’s okay.

………

I’m normally not a big fan of the visibility arms race, in which it seems like every rider has to outdo everyone else to capture the attention of drivers.

But this new backpack seems like a great idea.

The Bluetooth-enabled Aster backpack from India’s Lumos Design Technology, currently raising funds on Indiegogo, lights up the night with side and rear LED lights, as well as forward white lights on the front straps. Not to mention turn indicators and automatic brake lights.

h1sebecdfz8vgz82nkcj

It also functions as a commuter backpack, unfolding completely to provide easy access to your stuff, while offering helmet and U-lock holders, and a detachable shoe compartment.

n2rmatew9dy3rwnmd15j

And it was designed for use in the US, and product tested right here in California, with feedback from 50 or so riders from the Bay Area.

As a special offer for BikinginLA readers, the first person to pledge at least $75 on the Aster Indiegogo page will also get their Lumos Thrillseeker Solar Daypack, designed to convert sunlight into electricity to charge your USB devices while you ride. Just include “BikinginLA” in the comments when you make your pledge.

But remember, this offer is limited to the first person to make a $75 or higher pledge; there’s no way of knowing if someone may have beaten you to it.

………

Local

The LACBC’s Eric Bruins says that as planned, Metro’s proposed transportation tax increase will “build a fantastic system that people won’t feel safe walking and biking to.”

CiclaValley recaps Wednesday’s Traffic Safety Summit in Valley Village.

The LA River is slowly coming back to life in the San Fernando Valley, with plans for a walkway on one side and a bike path on the other.

Monrovia police bust a hit-and-run driver who left a cyclist with minor injuries. Thanks to DreamWaveDave for the link.

The lead guitarist for the band Pennywise is suing Uber after he was doored while riding in Hermosa Beach last year; the passengers stayed to help, but the driver fled.

Bike-friendly Long Beach wants to extend bicycle improvements to the city’s Southeast Area.

The Armenian Youth Federation’s annual Cycle Against Denial will be held in Santa Monica for the first time on April 10th; the event marking the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide had previously been held in the San Fernando Valley.

 

State

San Diego horses can be trained to share trails with bicycles, unlike the ones that use Burbank’s Mariposa bridge, apparently. Maybe they have smarter horses down there.

Temecula’s Sarah Hammer is the first American cyclist to qualify for the Rio Olympics; the multiple silver medal winner hopes her third Olympics will bring gold. Although she may have trouble winning anything if they don’t get the track installed in time.

The OC Register suggests a two-wheeled wine tasting tour through the Santa Barbara wine country.

A Contra Costa county bike rider is under arrest for randomly hitting and blocking people on a local pedestrian pathway.

Sunnyvale’s mayor accepts a student’s challenge to ride a bike to a local high school, and sees first hand what students have to deal with.

San Francisco’s red transit lanes are forcing cyclists out of the right lane and into traffic.

After a speeding tour bus driver crashed into pedestrians and a cyclist in a crowded San Francisco neighborhood, injuring 19 people, police basically say “oops.”

Fremont becomes the latest California city to adopt a Vision Zero plan, while Daly City considers it.

Someone must not like mountain bikers in Folsom Lake. Three riders were forced to take cover when bullets flew over their heads, even after they called out to stop shooting.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on riding during your period. Or maybe gel for your hoo ha would help.

Treehugger says the cargo bike is the new family car.

The Department of DIY strikes in Portland, as someone puts up fake speed limit signs saying 20 is plenty.

A Washington bike commuter suggests it’s your own damn fault if you get hit by a car if you’re wearing dark clothes and not using lights.

Police in my hometown finally make an arrest in the case of the courteous hit-and-run driver who apparently moved a bike and backpack to the curb, but left his victim lying in the street.

A protected bike lane in Nebraska suffers $2,500 in damages when a wrong-way driver plows into the concrete divider. On the other hand, without it, that could have been a bike rider.

When a Pennsylvania man walked over to the local police station to see if they’d found his stolen bike, a bighearted cop dipped into his own pocket to buy him a new one. Thanks to Mike Bike for the heads-up from his home town.

 

International

Bike Radar looks at ambitious mountain bike products that failed big time.

Folding bike maker Brompton calculates it costs the equivalent of $62 a month to store a bike in your London home. Not that you have a London home, of course. And not like they have a vested interest in suggesting you might want a bike that takes up less space.

A British cyclist is riding 1,400 miles across England to collect signatures for the Queen’s birthday card.

A new Irish study says the perception that you’re only riding a bike because you can’t afford a car is slowing efforts to get people out of theirs.

 

Finally…

When police can’t identify the vehicle a piece of plastic came from, the Internet can. If you take your imaginary friend for a ride, does he need his own bike?

And if you’re going to flee the scene after a drunken wreck, maybe it’s best not to be painted gold from head to toe.

 

Morning Links: Nine years for drunken West Covina hit-and-run; suspect wanted in Agoura Hills bike crash

For once, the punishment fits the crime.

The Los Angeles County DA’s office announced Tuesday that 25-year old Presley Danielle Rodriguez was sentenced to nine years in state prison for the drunken, high-speed hit-and run that took the life of 44-year old Jose De Jesus Ruiz Villanoeva as he rode his bike to work in West Covina last October.

She was arrested almost immediately when an officer pulled her over after hearing the crash and discovered the damage to her car, while a second officer discovered Villanoeva’s body.

This sentence comes as a pleasant surprise for an office with a reputation for bargaining away serious penalties just to get a conviction in many bike cases.

Although someone should tell the Daily News to read their own story before writing the headline.

Thanks to DreamWaveDave for the heads-up.

………

LA County Sheriff’s deputies are looking for a hit-and-run driver who fled after hitting a woman riding her bike in Agoura Hills.

The victim was severely injured when she was apparently right hooked while riding on Argos Street around 11 am Sunday by a driver turning onto Parkheath Drive.

The suspect is described only as a man driving a late-model black compact car. Anyone with information is urged to call the Malibu Lost Hills Station at 818/878-1808.

Thanks to Chris Willig for the link.

………

Sadly, this is exactly how too many bikeways are planned.

Sort of like Paul Koretz’ search for an alternate route for the Westwood Blvd bike lanes, which seems to be proceeding at the same pace as OJ’s search for the real killers.

………

Now that’s tough.

Not the bad break — literally and otherwise — that kept track cyclist Missy Erickson of the nascent World Cycling League’s California Wave team from competing in the Rio Olympics.

But Erickson herself, who broke off a cast so she could compete in a race after suffering a broken wrist and collarbone, as well as a Level 3 concussion, when she took a bad fall during a competition.

The league premiers this Friday and Saturday in Carson; Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson seems to think it’s a good idea.

………

Local

Once again, Los Angeles tops the rest of the US for the nation’s worst traffic. Maybe that explains why groups like Fix the City are fighting the new Mobility Plan; why change anything when you’re already number one?

Good Magazine talks with the founder of the Ovarian Psychos about their new documentary and riding gentrifiers out of town.

Bike friendly New York restaurant, sandwich shop and butcher The Cannibal is finally slated to open, partially at least, in Culver City next month; the name is based on the great Eddy Merckx, not the Donner Party.

Actor Josh Brolin is one of us, as he rides his single speed cruiser along Santa Monica’s Main Street. Although the British tabloids once again seem most impressed with his biceps.

Will Arnett is one of us, too; he recommends riding a bike through the streets of Venice, calling it the greatest mode of transport.

Call it a non-CicLAvia ciclovía, as Long Beach celebrates its downtown area this Saturday with the city’s second Beach Streets open streets event.

 

State

Costa Mesa’s Orange Coast College plans a pedestrian-free bike and skateboard loop around the campus, while banning riding from other areas.

San Marcos will get a one-third mile Complete Street this year, but not as soon as planned.

A San Diego group has unexpectedly dropped their lawsuit against buffered bike lanes on the city’s 4th and 5th Streets.

A Santa Barbara neighborhood association once again chooses parking over bicycles, threatening to sue if the city doesn’t consider alternatives to a contested bike lane on Micheltorena Street and conduct an environmental impact report. The governor signed a bill in 2013 exempting bike lanes from environmental review, but that hasn’t seemed to stop anyone from suing.

Berkeley officials call for extending a protected bike lane two blocks, a month too late to help a woman who was critically injured while riding her bike there.

Red Kite Prayer visits the Marin Museum of Bicycling.

A columnist for the Davis paper looks at Calbike’s proposal to offer a rebate to anyone who buys a commuter bicycle.

 

National

Evidently, the death of a bicyclist is no big deal in Alaska. An 18-year old hit-and-run driver is allowed to finish her college semester before beginning her prison sentence; she was under the influence when she ran down the victim while driving in reverse down the street following a party.

An anonymous Seattle bike vigilante has earned the moniker Bike Repo Batman for helping theft victims get their bicycles back. Thanks to joninsocal for the tip.

Sad news from Boulder CO as former pro cyclist Phil Zajicek lost an arm in a collision with a flatbed truck; fortunately, he’s expected to survive. Zajicek received a lifetime ban for doping violations in 2011.

Bighearted Michigan cops buy a new bicycle for a five-year old boy who was injured when a car backed over him as he tried to ride around it.

An upstate NY man is making plans for a record-breaking attempt at the world’s biggest classic bike parade; under the rules — yes, there are rules for such things — the bikes must be at least 30 years old, and travel at least two miles. Which means my 1981 Trek would easily make the cut, if I could get it to go that far.

 

International

A sustainable transportation lecturer writing in the Guardian says it’s not enough to reduce speed limits on residential streets to 20 mph; we need to stop cut through traffic — aka rat running — to keep quiet streets quiet.

It’s time to bury the phrase “Share the Road” once and for all when it’s used by auto-centric NIMBY’s to fight a planned London bike superhighway.

A London woman breaks the third date rule, agreeing on her second date to ride around the world promoting education with the man who’s now her fiancé.

It takes a real schmuck to steal a Brit paperboy’s bike as he delivers his paper route.

English bicyclists take safety into their own hands by spray painting a warning on an unsafe bike lane; naturally, county officials respond by calling it vandalism rather than actually doing anything to fix it.

A man in Limerick, Ireland was arrested after riding his bike with a sawed off shotgun looking for people to shoot; he wounded one man and missed another before he was stopped while looking for a third victim.

Mikael Colville-Andersen of Copenhagenize goes on a rant against what he considers bad bikeway designs, insisting that if you don’t see it used in the Netherlands or Denmark, it’s probably a stupid idea.

Yemini women lead the resistance to the country’s civil war by riding bicycles as a symbol of solidarity.

Beijing tries free bikeshare in an attempt to battle the seemingly endless pollution gripping the city.

 

Finally…

We may have to deal with LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to plow our own pathways. Forget PowerBars; try surviving on roadkill on your next bike tour.

And what to ride when an ordinary, sub-$9,000 bike just isn’t good enough.

 

Update: Santa Ana bike rider killed in late night hit-and-run

Yet another person riding a bike has been left to die in the street by a heartless coward who fled the scene.

According to the Orange County Register, a bike rider identified only as an adult male was hit by an SUV shortly before 1 am on the 1400 block of West Warner Ave, just East of the South Pacific Ave in Santa Ana.

The victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

There’s no word at this time what may have caused the collision, or how it occurred. Witnesses reported the driver fled east on Warner, but no description of the driver or the SUV is currently available.

A street view shows a wide open three lane roadway east of Pacific, with no parking allowed and nothing to slow drivers down.

Anyone with information is urged to call Santa Ana police Cpl. Matt Wharton at 714/245-8209.

This is the 26th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fifth in Orange County; it’s also the second in Santa Ana since the first of the year. That compares with ten in the seven county SoCal region this time last year, and none in the county.

Update: The victim has been identified as 44-year old Ricardo Aguilar; no city of residence was given. The time of the collision has been changed to around 5 am. Note: The story in the Register misidentified the victim as Ricardo Martinez; his niece sent a correction in the comments below.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Ricardo Aguilar and his loved ones.

Morning Links: The bi-coastal bikelash goes on, and good news on the medical and track racing fronts

The bikelash goes on.

Sometimes, even from people who profess to be cyclists themselves.

Take this writer from Goleta, just outside Santa Barbara.

Please.

He starts with a suspicion of a grand conspiracy to force drivers out of their cars.

According to him, road diets, bulb-outs and bike lanes are planned, not to improve safety or provide transportation options, but to make driving so miserable that people have no choice but to give up on their cars and take to bikes.

Never mind that if bicycling somehow miraculously reached the level of ridership found in the Netherlands, it would still only amount to 27% of all trips.

He insists that those behind it are those damn progressive politicians and traffic department bureaucrats, environmental advocates, and the “well-funded, politically powerful Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition.”

Which would no doubt come as a surprise to the SBBC. And make it one of the few well-funded bike advocacy groups anywhere.

Or maybe the only one.

Then he pivots to the standard complaint that bicyclists don’t pay for the lanes they ride on. Which is based on the false assumption that drivers do, rather than being the most heavily publicly subsidized form of transportation.

The obvious solution, in his mind, anyway, is licensing cyclists.

Even though the money raised by licensing is unlikely to bring in enough to even cover its own operating costs. And even though bike riders already pay more than their share for the roads through their own taxes.

Naturally, he also complains that bike riders break the law. Except for him, of course.

And unlike motorists, who would never, ever dream of speeding, driving distracted or making an unsafe lane change in a vehicle capable of doing far more harm than even the worst scofflaw cyclist.

So the law needs to crack down on cyclists, he insists. And we all need to carry liability insurance, because maybe someday, in the bike utopian world he so fears, a distracted cyclist could cause a massive bike pileup that forces a poor, innocent driver off the road.

No, really.

It’s worth the read if you need a good laugh.

Unlike the New York Post’s latest attack on former NYDOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan.

In what passes for an exceptionally auto-centric, yet pedestrian review of her acclaimed new book, a writer for the paper goes on the attack, less for what she wrote than what she wrought.

He complains about “her ruinous tampering with historic traffic patterns” as she sought to turn the city into one of the world’s great bicycling cities, “everyone else be damned.”

Even though surveys consistently show most New Yorkers support the city’s bike lanes and the changes she helped make, and traffic fatalities have reached historic lows.

He goes on to complain that public plazas around Times Square are so crowded and overrun with tourists and hucksters that New Yorkers “assiduously” avoid it. Sort of like Yogi Berra’s famous proclamation that “No one goes there’s anymore. It’s too crowded.”

And in his eyes, moving parked cars away from the curb to form protected bike lanes makes the streets look like parking lots. Unlike before, when the same cars were far more attractively parked on the same streets.

Somehow, those cars also make it harder to see what’s on the other side of the street. Because they were apparently transparent before being moved a few feet to the left.

He tops it off with the assertion that the city’s bike lanes are only used by food delivery people most times of the day.

Never mind that bike commuting doubled in just five years, and more people are riding that ever before. Let alone those 22 million Citi Bike riders, who have to be riding somewhere.

He ends by complaining that the damage done by Sadik-Khan’s reign is with us to stay.

For which most New Yorkers are undoubtedly grateful.

And the rest of us can only envy.

………

If you haven’t already, take a few moments to sign the petition asking for all new or used cars sold in California to leave the lot with a temporary license plate.

It doesn’t take much effort watching traffic to realize that too many cars are on the streets with no front plates — or any license plates at all — making them virtually impossible to identify in the event of a hit-and-run or other traffic crime.

And enforcing the law requiring front and back plates on every vehicle seems to be a very low priority.

………

Exciting news on the medical front, as stunt cyclist Martyn Ashton takes his first mechanically assisted steps with a new hi-tech walker, three years after he was paralyzed from the waist down.

And after an injection of neural cells taken from his nose, a Polish firefighter can now ride an adaptive tricycle, four years after he was paralyzed from the chest down after a stabbing.

………

US women win their first-ever gold in team pursuit at the track cycling world championships; Temecula’s Sarah Hammer was part of the winning team, and qualified for the Rio Olympics in another event.

………

Road raging drivers are one thing. Getting chased by an ostrich is another.

And he really needs to learn to hold his line.

………

Local

Streetsblog’s Damien Newton talks with Amy Wong of Women on Wheels.

Russell Crowe goes mountain biking on Sunset Blvd, while the Brit press goes gaga over his biceps.

Burbank residents beg for safety improvements on Edison Blvd, including a proposal to install bike lanes to tame traffic.

A Pacoima man was shot to death Thursday night, apparently while riding his bicycle.

The next LACBC Sunday Funday ride with roll this Sunday, with a pre-St. Patrick’s Day themed ride through DTLA led by board member Patrick Pascal.

 

State

It’s been over 49 days since the Marines impounded a number of mountain bikes after their riders strayed onto the Miramar Marine base in San Diego, with no resolution in sight.

A Silicon Valley bike commuter creates a website to provide consumers with more information about insurance companies in an effort to force them to improve their customer service.

 

National

Here’s your chance to work in bike advocacy, as the Bike League is hiring a new Education Director and a Member Services Coordinator.

The Tucson truck driver who plowed into a group of cyclists while allegedly high on meth is being held on $1.5 million bond. Which somehow seems too low.

Two-thirds of Iowans support proposed legislation that would require drivers to change lanes to pass bike riders. Although someone there clearly doesn’t like cyclists, as a popular Des Moines bikeway is sabotaged with tacks.

Chicago is building three curb-protected bike lanes, with an eventual goal of 50 miles of low-stress bikeways.

The Washington Post argue that the federal government should not reclassify bikeshare as mass transit programs, which would qualify it for Fed transit funding.

 

International

The new Audi A4 has lights on the doors to warn drivers if a bike is coming to help avoid doorings. Because actually looking before you open the door is just too hard.

A Vancouver business site says instead of investing $5 million in bikeshare, the city could have bought bicycles for about 200,000 children in low-income households. Which kind of misses the point.

A Toronto lawyer says cars are becoming the weapon of choice, yet drivers who use them to attack others still get their licenses back.

Nice piece on bicycling in Victorian England, which suggests that the bike-riding men of the day were the original hipsters.

Belgian rider Femke Van den Driessche is just 19 years old, and facing a lifetime ban for motor doping.

An Aussie writer says the only thing the country’s mandatory bike helmet law protects you against is fines. Meanwhile, an Australian news network does its best to whip up a panic over e-bikes.

I want to be like him when I grow up. An 85-year old Kiwi cyclist refuses to let a collision with a trailer keep him off his bike.

 

Finally…

The next driver who runs you off the road could have two left feet; no, literally. Ford wants to save you from those embarrassing moments when you can’t unclip from your pedals.

And I think we can all agree BikinginLA deserves a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. So who has an extra $30,000 lying around?

 

Morning Links: LACBC & SaMo Spoke up for national honors, CHP looks for driver in East LA bike hit-and-run

Congratulations are in order for the Los Angeles Bicycle Coalition and Santa Monica Spoke.

The LACBC and its local chapter Santa Monica Spoke received national recognition as they dominated the nominations for next week’s Alliance for Biking & Walking’s annual Advocacy Awards.

The nominations include:

  • LACBC for Advocacy Organization of the Year
  • LACBC Executive Director Tamika Butler for Advocate of the Year
  • LACBC Planning & Policy Director Eric Bruins for Advocate of the Year
  • Santa Monica Spoke’s Cynthia Rose for the Susie Stephens Joyful Enthusiasm Award
  • LACBC work on LA’s Mobility Plan 2035 for Winning Campaign of the Year

No other organization received more than two nominations. The winners will be announced at the National Bike Summit in Washington DC.

………

The CHP is looking for the hit-and-run driver who left an injured East LA cyclist lying in the street.

The victim was hit by a white pickup just before 10 p.m. near the intersection of West Whittier Blvd and South Eastern Ave; no other description of the suspect vehicle or the driver is available.

No word on the condition of the victim, who was taken to a nearby hospital.

Thanks to John Damman for the heads-up.

………

Metro has placed their Draft Active Transportation Strategic Plan online; you have until Friday the 25th to submit comments.

………

More on Sunday’s North Valley CicLAvia.

KPCC looks at the route, and suggests four activities you should try. Eventbright looks back at some of the more notable riders from past CicLAvias to inspire you to bring your A game. Time Out LA recommends five things to see and do along the route, including curling — no, not your hair.

CiclaValley tells you how to get there. And the CicLAvia website offers advice on where to rent a bike for the day.

Meanwhile, Long Beach plans “dynamic” activities for their second ever Beach Streets ciclovía following on the 19th.

………

Local

Richard Risemberg says cars waste space, while bike racks have the opposite effect.

KNBC-4 finally notices that Los Angeles is in the midst of a hit-and-run epidemic; CHP data shows one occurs every 18 minutes in the city, and the driver flees in half of all collisions in the county. It won’t get any better until California actually does something about it.

UCLA’s Daily Bruin calls for a free shuttle along Westwood Blvd connecting the campus with the new Expo Line station, since bicycling is unlikely to be a safe option. That’s thanks to Councilmember Paul Koretz unreasonable and unconscionable blocking of a long-planned bike lane along the Blvd.

A bike rider just barely avoids being run down during a police chase that started in Boyle Heights and ended in a Pasadena HoneyBaked Ham store.

A Long Beach bike rider was hospitalized after a collision on Tuesday around noon on Tuesday. Thanks to James for the heads-up.

 

State

Streetsblog looks at Calbike’s legislative agenda for the coming session; one bill under consideration would require traffic lights to be timed to create a green wave, ensuring that riders traveling at 12 – 15 mph would see nothing but green lights.

The inevitable bikelash has begun. Shortly after San Diego announces plans to make the city core safer for cyclists and pedestrians, business leaders in the city’s Little Italy district say they’d rather have parking than bike-borne customers.

A San Bernardino man was killed in a drive-by while riding a bike.

Isla Vista businesses partner with police and advocacy groups to give away around 1,000 lights to bike riders.

A Santa Cruz man is looking for investors to bring his custom-made e-cargo bike to market.

Candidates for mayor of Sacramento promise to make the city friendlier for bicyclists and pedestrians, while making it a vibrant place people can navigate without a car.

 

National

Good cyclists steer with their bodies, bad cyclists steer with their handlebars. And in other news, water is wet. No, really.

The eternal battle between hikers and mountain bikers rears its ugly head in Scottsdale AZ. It’s not that hard to show a little courtesy — on both sides.

Two cyclists were killed, and two injured, after an allegedly drunk driver plowed into a group of ten riders while they were stopped at a red light in Tucson AZ; they were all waiting in the bike lane when they were struck. If you’ve ever wondered why some bike riders go through red lights, this is it; while I don’t condone it, many bicyclists believe they are safer going through a light than waiting patiently and risking something like this.

A bighearted New Mexico man searched for two weeks to find a homeless man whose bicycle was falling apart just to give him a new one. It’s people like that who make this world a better place.

A Boulder CO program uses adult-sized balance bikes to help teens and adults with disabilities gain confidence and discover what they’re capable of achieving.

Lance Armstrong shares his views on doping and the Tour de France with a class of students at the University of Colorado.

Bikes heal. A former doctor refurbishes bicycle in a Des Moines co-op in an attempt to reclaim his life, after he was acquitted on manslaughter charges for recklessly prescribing drugs that killed his patients, including the bassist for the band Slipknot.

Minnesota’s StarTribune offers a look at the innovations in the bike world on display at this year’s Frostbike, saying there’s great stuff, but nothing revolutionary.

A Massachusetts man is ruled a danger to society after deliberately mowing down a boy as he rode his bike on the sidewalk; the driver was allegedly enraged that the victim had talked trash about his sister.

 

International

Vancouver tripled bike rack installations last year, and is still scrambling to keep up with demand. That’s a great problem to have, evidence that the city’s recent completion of a protected bikeway network is boosting ridership.

A Canadian mountain bike trail was sabotaged with wooden stakes and a wire strung at neck height in an apparent attempt to injure, or possibly kill, bike riders. Let’s hope the charges reflect that when they find whoever is responsible.

Caught on video: It’s not always bike riders who are the scofflaws. A London cycling hits the pavement trying to avoid pedestrians crossing against the light.

More on that UK survey that shows the overwhelming majority of Brits support bikeways; nearly 80% support bike lanes if they don’t significantly affect their commute, while more than half said they’d still support bike lanes even if it made their commutes five minutes longer.

The head of Britain’s equivalent of the AAA gets it. He says bike lanes that start and stop are one of the worst things for both bike riders and drivers, lulling both into a false sense of security.

 

Finally…

Sometimes riding can be a scream; no, literally. Always bring extra water; you never know when you’ll want to share it with a wheel-climbing marsupial.

And nothing like having your stunt bike promo photobombed by a bare butt.

 

Update: 66-year old bicyclist killed in Montclair hit-and-run

A bike rider has been killed in Montclair Friday night.

InlandNews reports Montclair police are investigating a fatal hit-and-run involving a bike, and shows a photo of a damaged bicycle lying in the street.

They add that the suspect vehicle is a dark blue truck.

No other details are available at this time. However, KNBC-4 has confirmed the death in a story that is not yet online.

This is the 21st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the third in San Bernardino County. That compares with eight in SoCal this time last year, and none in the county.

Update: The Daily Bulletin has identified the victim as 66-year old Montclair resident Dieu Van Nguyen. 

According to the paper, Nguyen was struck by a pickup shortly before 6:30 pm on the 4600 block of Kingsley Street. Police responding to the scene found him laying on the sidewalk; he was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

Authorities are looking for a full-sized, dark colored four-door pick-up with lights on the roof over the windshield. Anyone with information is urged to call the Montclair Police Department at 909/621-4771.

Update 2: Nguyen was on his way to visit a friend when he found fatally injured less than one mile from his home. The Vietnamese immigrant, who recently retired, leaves behind a wife, three children and two step-children.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Dieu Van Nguyen and his loved ones.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Morning Links: Killer SD hit-and-run driver has a bad night; next Griffith Park access meeting on Wednesday

This is why so many people hate lawyers.

The attorney for a San Diego driver who fled the scene after driving though a bike lane, jumping the curb and hitting two young girls, leaving one brain dead, says she’s just a “really good person who obviously had a very bad night.”

Right.

The victims’ family had a worse one.

He goes on to give reasons that he says affected her ability to control her car, which may or may not be valid.

But the bottom line is, if you can’t operate a motor vehicle safely, for whatever reason, don’t get behind the damn wheel.

And nothing excuses running off like a coward, leaving a couple of little girls bleeding in the street.

Ever. Period.

………

A couple quick events, complete with massive graphics.

The next meeting to discuss access plans for Griffith Park, which could include frequent, yet inadequate, shuttle service on previously closed Mt. Hollywood Drive is scheduled for next Wednesday night.

Griffith Park Access

And CICLE is hosting a Bikes and Beats Community Bike Ride this Saturday.

Flyer_Bikes_and_Beats_Community_Bike_Ride_v3-1

………

A 31-year old transient is suspected in the stabbing death of cyclist Sidney Siemensma on an Irvine bike path last month; the suspect, an acquaintance of the victim, was already in custody on kiddie porn charges.

………

Bikeshare continues to expand across North America, with new programs coming to Evanston IL, Richmond VA and Vancouver, British Columbia, and another under consideration in Tacoma WA.

………

The website is up for live streaming of American cyclist Evelyn Stevens’ attempt to break the women’s hour record, starting at 10:30 am this Saturday.

My money is on her to smash it.

………

Local

Streetsblog looks at that crazy, unmarked detour around the LA River Bike Path, which has been closed to make way for the El Niño flood control barriers installed by the Army Corps of Engineers. And suggests it’s an opportunity to stripe bike lanes on a more direct route, if anyone at LADOT or the mayor’s office happens to be listening.

The LA County Sheriff’s Department is asking for the public’s help in finding the people who fatally shot a father of four last year as he rode his bike on a Compton sidewalk.

Richard Risemberg says horses have gone into war for millennia, but somehow can’t see a bicycle on the Mariposa bridge without suffering a heart attack.

The San Gabriel Valley Tribune says Temple City missed an opportunity to remake Las Tunas Drive and revitalize the city’s downtown, ensuring the city’s main drag will “remain a big drag, a four-lane plus turn-lane place to drive while going somewhere more interesting.” Not to mention keeping it dangerous for anyone not encased in a ton of steel and glass.

 

State

Streetsblog’s Damien Newton talks with Calbike’s Jeanie Ward-Waller about a proposal to rebate up to half the purchase price of a commuter bicycle.

A Camp Pendleton spokesperson discusses the new rules for riding on the base, but says the Boob Ride will go on.

Bike thefts have spiked in San Diego’s Hillcrest neighborhood, with reports of thieves breaking into apartment complex garages.

A man on a bicycle allegedly stabbed two people following an altercation at a Victorville gas station.

Palm Springs is adding bike lanes to five streets and improved signage and street markings to 17 others in the next few months, after painting green lanes on another five streets since last September.

Santa Barbara approves a new bike plan, although in yet another battle over bike lanes versus parking, the city just gives provisional approval to a bike lane on one commercial street after the city attorney raises questions about whether it requires an additional environmental review. I could have sworn we recently passed a law precisely to exempt bike plans from that.

A Fresno bike shop is considering closing after bike thieves broke in for the second time in just 10 days.

 

National

A new Boulder CO off-road cycling tour company promises to take you on mountain biking trails you’ve never heard of. Grammatically, that should be “of which you’ve never heard.” But screw that.

You’ve got to be kidding. A North Dakota driver gets a whopping six months — half of that to be served at home — and a lousy $1,000 fine for killing a cyclist because he was busy taking a selfie as he drove. Nice to see they take distracted driving seriously up there. And yes, that’s dripping with sarcasm. And contempt.

A Cincinnati councilman wants nearly a half mile of protected bike lanes ripped out so people can continue to park illegally; a local paper says the focus should be on scofflaw motorists instead.

Most snow belt cities ignore bikeways in the winter time, but Chattanooga TN has a cute little de-icing buggy for their protected lanes.

A Philadelphia bicycle company is working with local advocates this weekend to build 100 bikes to donate to community groups that were promised during last year’s papal visit.

A New York writer makes the case for enforcing red light laws against reckless bicyclists who blast through red lights, while maybe looking the other way when riders roll through more placid intersections.

A New Jersey website profiles the executive director of the state’s Bike and Walk Coalition.

 

International

Londonist says the future looks bright for London cyclists, but much depends on who wins the city’s upcoming mayoral election.

A British cyclist will attempt to ride up France’s famed Mont Ventoux by three separate routes, on a Brompton. So the question becomes, will he ride like the wind or fold like the bike?

Copenhagen is replacing all traffic lights in the downtown area with bike-friendly lights designed to recognize and favor bicycles.

I want to be like her when I grow up. A South African grandmother is still riding strong at age 87.

Bike ownership is no obstacle to joining the Singapore national cycling team.

 

Finally…

It does seem somewhat incredible two teams are withdrawing from the Movement for Credible Cycling because their test results aren’t. Here’s your chance to be a Cat 3 lab rat.

And if you really want to scare the hell out of drivers, this should do the trick.

 

%d bloggers like this: