Tag Archive for Los Angeles

Morning Links: 19-year old bike rider shot in Commerce; more naked folks on bikes; and mobile LA bike repair

Yet another LA-area bike rider has been shot and killed.

According to KTLA-5, 19-year old Bryan Hernandez was riding his bike home from work when he was killed early Tuesday morning. His body was found around 2:50 am at the intersection of Eastern Avenue and Peachtree Street in Commerce.

KNBC-4 says police initially thought he was the victim of a hit-and-run.

Just 19 years old.

What an effing waste. This crap has got to stop.

Now.

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It seems we can’t get away from naked people on bikes this week.

A fully dressed Neon Tommy reporter talks to participants in the recent LA edition of the World Naked Bike Ride.

Meanwhile, Portland’s WNBR was thought to have drawn over 9,000 people, though not everyone approved.

And Iceland remakes a recent Brit TV spot which suggests people actually can notice someone on a bike. Even if he’s not wearing hi-viz.

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A new mobile bike repair service is coming to LA, and looking for franchise owners.

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Women’s pro cyclist Carmen Small reflects on racing with the men at Minnesota’s North Star Grand Prix.

The Tour de France will offer fans more data than ever before, including the ability to track any rider in real time. And not wanting to give the wrong impression, a German shampoo maker will drop its “Doping for hair” slogan just for the Tour.

And speaking of doping, Tour favorite and ex-Tour de France winner Alberto Contador continues to build on his legacy, despite a previous two-year ban for doping.

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Local

Streetsblog reports DTLA now has three bike corrals, with more to come.

CiclaValley points out that North Hollywood students actually biked to school in the 1920s. Evidently, they didn’t have helicopter parents with massive SUVs to drop them off.

Vox looks back at LA’s historic elevated bike highway, as well as other early bikeways.

Long Beach is hosting a series of free bike safety classes through the LACBC.

 

State

Thanks in part to support from cyclists, the proposed hit-and-run alert bill sailed through committee in the state legislature by a unanimous vote on Tuesday.

BikeSGV sends word that the Santa Barbara Bowl offers free bike valet. And wonders why the Hollywood Bowl, home to massive nightly traffic jams, doesn’t.

Three Sacramento-area cyclists were injured, one critically, when they were struck by a hit-and-run driver; police were later able to subdue a suspect using a police dog. No offence, but I hope that dog bit the crap out of him.

 

National

Bike League president Andy Clarke is stepping down after 12 years.

A simple fix could help reduce the risk of fatal collisions with trucks; credit BikinginLA sponsor Josh Cohen for the link. Although an even better solution would be to just not hit anyone.

My Colorado hometown ranks first for bike-friendly businesses. However, I should note that the city only became bike friendly after I moved away.

A Louisiana woman who was abducted and murdered while riding her bike home after a night out will have a new bike loop named in her honor.

That Florida cyclist seriously injured after skidding on an alligator carcass faces a long and painful recovery; he suffered a fractured face, broken ribs and clavicle and a collapsed lung when his riding partners ran over him after he hit the pavement.

 

International

Toronto’s chief medical official says speed kills, making the case for reducing speed limits to save lives.

Hundreds of London cyclists stage a die-in in the heart of the city to raise awareness for cycling safety.

A Brit radio presenter says wearing a camera does more to improve safety than a helmet does on the streets of London.

Following Alice, of Wonderland fame, on a bike tour through Oxford.

 

Finally…

The next bike rack you put on your car could blow up, but in a good way. Your next sport could be bike football, er, soccer

And if you thought Peter Sagan did some crazy shit on a bike, just get a load of Vittorio Brumotti.

Morning Links: An early endorsement for state senate, registration gets bikes back, and OCTA swims upstream

Getting a jump on next year’s elections, the Speaker of the California Assembly has endorsed former representative Steven Bradford for the state senate in next year’s elections.

Toni Adkins joins former LA mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, state Senator Robert Hertzberg and Speaker Emeritus John A. Pérez in endorsing Bradford.

And me, too.

Bradford is a bicyclist himself, and has worked in the legislature to improve safety for cyclists. Including sponsoring the first two attempts at passing a stronger version of the new three-foot passing law, which cleared the legislature before being vetoed by Gov. Brown.

It’s early in the game. But Steven Bradford has my unqualified support, having already proven himself to be an effective legislator.

And one of the good guys.

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This is why I keep pushing the Bike Index bicycle registration and stolen bike reporting available at the top of this page.

In just the last two weeks, the site has helped 11 stolen bikes find their way back home to their owners.

It’s free, period. To register, report a theft, or check a bike against the list of ones reported stolen in the area.

And it could make all the difference if someone makes off with yours.

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Just a week before the Tour de France, Mark Cavendish hurts his shoulder when it’s whacked with a camera by a too-close fan. Victory could be in the cards for Aussie rider Nathan Haas — literally — while Chris Froome risks being upstaged by his cat.

 

London’s Mail looks at how to get away with doping these days. Although that may not be necessary, if you can just get a support vehicle to follow you; a new study says that can be enough to affect the outcome of a race.

And writer for ESPN says women’s sports are boring and not worth watching; not surprisingly, women’s cyclists disagree. As does anyone who has watched women’s cycling for more than five minutes, or plans to watch the US take on Germany in today’s Women’s World Cup match.

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Local

Ding dong, LaBonge is gone. LA’s most outgoing cheerleader led summer bike rides, but blocked planned bikeways on Lankershim Blvd, as well as 4th and 6th Streets, and was a driving force behind the unsafe and pedestrian-unfriendly design recently adopted for the new Glendale-Hyperion Bridge.

A writer for the Daily Bruin calls for a Westwood bikeshare hub to give students greater access to LA. Although they will still need safe places to ride.

CiclaValley looks at Sunday’s successful LA River Ride. I had planned to be there myself, but my health issues knocked me on my ass all day.

Streetsblog’s Damien Newton talks with Richard McKinnon of Safe Streets Santa Monica about bringing data to street safety discussions. His group mapped 9,600 collisions over a 10-year period, and discovered less than fifty caused by cyclists.

Police bust a bike riding burglar perusing potentially purloin-able property in a subterranean SaMo garage.

 

State

A San Diego bike rider suffered minor injuries after he’s accused of running a red light in an early morning crash. The question is whether anyone other than the driver who hit him actually saw the victim go through the light. Because no driver would have an incentive to twist the facts, or anything.

A Santa Cruz cyclist really goes the extra mile — or more like a marathon — by riding back and getting his car to drive an injured bike-riding stranger to his home. Then replacing the man’s fluorescent lights and fixing his faucet and electric switches, as well as buying and mounting a new tire for his bike.

A San Francisco cyclist is on a one-woman mission to stop drivers from double parking in bike lanes. Maybe she could come down here next.

Bagdad by the Bay has become Bicyclists by the Bay, to the detriment of those poor, put upon drivers according one SF writer.

Streetsblog asks if a new bike lane in Orinda is the worst bike lane in the world; the lane directs bike riders to go straight between two right turn lanes, almost guaranteeing a high-speed right hook.

Remarkably, two mountain bikers are relatively okay after plunging 150 feet off a Marin County trail in separate incidents nearly seven hours apart, yet somehow landing in the same spot.

 

National

City Lab offers advice on how to hold onto your bike seat. And they take a look at that device developed by Chatanooga police to catch drivers violating the three-foot passing law.

A new bill in Congress would require the DOT to research new technology to improve safety for pedestrians and bicyclists.

Las Vegas is fighting an epidemic of bicycling fatalities, with seven deaths this year compared to just one last year; four of those have been hit-and-runs. The story advises bicyclists to stay safe by walking across crosswalks, but has anyone ever done a study to determine if that really reduces risk?

Nice piece from Wichita KN, as cyclists surprise a riding buddy who suffered a massive stroke with a custom-made three-wheel ‘bent to get him back on the road. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

LA’s own Swrve is among the bike brands sponsoring musician Ben Weaver’s planned tour around Lake Superior next month.

A Connecticut driver faces a negligent homicide charge after left crossing a cyclist, even though the driver said he never saw him. Although the cops suspect the cyclist may have been speeding, based on nothing but speculation.

A new Delaware bill would encourage transit-friendly, walkable and bikeable economic development.

Boston may be the first proposed Olympic site without a velodrome, since no one seems to want it.

Athletes fight in every sport. But when bicyclists do it at the end of an Massachusetts race, it somehow becomes news.

As Philadelphia has become more bike friendly, surrounding counties have fallen behind.

New York’s Central Park goes partially car-free. Parks are for people, not cars — a lesson the people running Griffith Park still need to learn.

A New York cyclist shoots a TV quiz show, which could go national, from the seat of his bike.

New Orleans plans to narrow the massive neutral ground — aka median, to everyone else — on the city’s Napoleon Ave to make room for a walking path and bike lanes.

 

International

Two cyclists are competing against themselves and each other, riding a combined 150,000 miles in an attempt to break the year record.

An Ottawa writer gets it, saying there’s so much more to bike safety than just wearing a helmet. Note to Metro News: When you show a photo of a bike helmet, a caption saying it’s a bike helmet really isn’t necessary.

A handful of Canadian cities are building protected bike lanes; Montreal leads Saskatoon by 184 km to one.

The owners of a British trucking firm are banned from the business after an unlicensed and uninsured driver killed a cyclist while driving one of their trucks. Too bad we can’t hold business owners accountable like that over here.

A Brit bike rider is convicted of using “racially aggressive language” when a security guard tried to stop him from riding in a mall.

Bicycling could be the answer to providing care givers in rural areas in the UK.

France bans hands-free cell phone headsets, while Paris is making the massive roundabouts at seven major intersections safer for cyclists.

Burundi’s president may be controversial, but at least he bikes the vote. Even if his wife, soldiers and bodyguards had to walk behind him.

Injuries and fatalities blamed on Japanese bike riders have fallen dramatically, but authorities are cracking down on riders because the ratio of fatalities blamed on bicyclists has gone up. So it’s now illegal to hold an umbrella while you ride.

Instead of trying to make a car with two wheels, why not just build a better Korean e-bike?

 

Finally…

Why let facts get in the way, as Donald Trump evidently doesn’t understand the difference between a bike race and a bike ride, even though he used to sponsor one; the former, not the latter. A writer from my home state says bike lanes, potholes and marijuana are all part of a plot to force his city to go car-free; someone should tell him bikes need decent pavement, too.

And a seriously strange video from the Orange County Transportation Authority says don’t be a salmon.

 

Morning Links: Statewide hit-and-run alert bill in trouble; Gil Cedillo shares the outrage at tragedy he helped cause

As we noted last week, today is the last day to voice your support for the proposed California hit-and-run alert system before Tuesday’s vote in the state senate.

The bill faces unexpected opposition from the CHP, which evidently favors letting fleeing drivers get away with it.

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Boyonabike says the death of a bike rider in Friday’s Highland Park hit-and-run is another outrage. As was the cancellation of the road diet that might have saved him; Richard Risemberg blames city council overreach for keeping our streets dangerous.

Meanwhile, Councilmember Gil Cedillo, who was single-handedly responsible for that cancellation, says he shares the outrage over this tragedy, and suggests we have to make better choices.

Let’s hope he takes his own advice.

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Looks like LA had a big turnout for Saturday’s World Naked Bike Ride.

LAist offers all the NSFW photos you could want, although the best photo might just be a mirror image; thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Meanwhile, a Portland writer describes what it’s like to ride buck naked, while Breitbart doesn’t seem to get it — or the difference between #pdx and #lax, for that matter.

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An Aussie site looks at the big four in the upcoming Tour de France, which kicks off on Independence Day. Ours, not theirs.

Vincenzo Nibali is on a mission to defend his title, while some seem to question Chris Froome’s mental fortitude. In the absence of sprinter Marcel Kittel, it should be Mark Cavendish’s time to shine. And a parcel service offers an infographic explaining the tour’s logistics.

A team of Baltimore cyclists bike like a girl over 3,000 miles across the US while setting a team RAAM record.

Thankfully, the Danish cyclist critically injured in a collision while competing in the Race Across America is showing some improvement. Something is seriously wrong when someone can’t come to this country to compete without an American driver putting his life in jeopardy.

And UCI, cycling’s governing body, is seriously out of control as they fine an amateur racer for tweeting his objections about a lack of water and neutral support at the amateur national championships, where several cyclists succumbed to heat stroke.

Maybe someone should fine UCI for risking the safety of their riders.

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Local

Evidently, California’s police chiefs don’t want you to see what really happened when Gardena police fatally shot an unarmed man whose brother’s bike had been stolen.

 

State

The LA Times’ David Lazarus asks why bike riders aren’t entitled to free air at gas stations, like motorists are.

The Orange County Register explains how to report bad or hostile drivers to the DMV.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on how to get your stolen bike back, including reporting the theft for free with Bike Index. Which you can do right here; you can also register it before it’s stolen, which is a lot smarter.

One cyclist finds serenity riding the Columbia River Gorge outside Portland, while another loses his life there after losing control of his bike on a descent.

Apparently, Albuquerque bikes climb light poles.

Denver police say if you steal a bike, it just might be one of theirs; over 20 would-be thieves have taken their GPS-equipped bait so far. On the other hand, Georgia sheriff’s deputies go low tech by using scent dogs to track a 15-year old thief.

An Iowa City paper asks if removing traffic lanes can curb aggressive driving and promote bicycling. That would be, yes.

Hats off to a team of Houston cops riding to New York to raise awareness for leukemia and lymphoma, who stopped along the way to save the life of an Alabama driver after he’d gone off the road.

Vermont’s transportation secretary says the recent deaths of three bike riders should be a catalyst to further safety in order to meet the state’s goal of zero traffic fatalities.

Boston gets a new bike counter. Not that we’re going to get one, but where would we put it if we did?

A Connecticut teen steals a $3,000 bike because he got tired of walking. On the other hand, what kind of idiot who leaves a bike like that unlocked on the porch at two in the morning?

A Bethlehem NY boy gets a new bike as a reward for quick thinking after his is destroyed in a collision where he could have been collateral damage.

 

International

A new Canadian study says those scary reports that bike riding can cause prostate cancer are probably wrong.

A Canadian recreational cyclist offers tips on bicycling etiquette — including advice to ride in the door zone.

A new bike light projects symbols on your back — like a stop sign, turn signals or a bicycle — while you ride; it can also be programed to project your own symbols. Yes, even that one.

Good article from London’s Telegraph, asking why serious bicycling injuries are increasing while fatalities are going down — and at a rate greater than the rise in ridership.

Brit bike riders go back to the future. Or maybe forward to the past.

Someone stole a $100 bike 20 minutes after it was donated to a British charity store. They seem to define racing bike a little oddly, though.

The Times of London looks at Dublin’s plans to ban cars from the city center and convert traffic lanes to segregated bike paths. Riots would break out if anyone suggested that here.

A New Zealand paper says if the country’s planned bikeways do what they’re supposed to, everyone wins.

 

Finally…

At least we only have to worry about LA drivers; six Florida cyclists were injured, one seriously, when his bike slipped on the remains of a roadkill gator. When you’re chasing a bike-riding suspect on foot, be sure to lock your patrol car first.

And when you’re riding with a digital scale, meth and heroin on your bike, put some damn lights on it. And don’t ride on the sidewalk.

And don’t crash into pole trying to get away.

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It has nothing to do with bicycling. But just thought I’d share the view out our window last night.

Dusk-6-28

 

Update: Arrest made in horrifying high-speed Highland Park fatal hit-and-run

North Figueroa was supposed to be safer by now.

Had LADOT been allowed to carry out it’s plans, the street would have undergone a road diet. Not just to install bike lanes, but to calm dangerous high-speed traffic.

Now a bike rider is dead, the victim of a speeding hit-and-run driver.

According to the LA Times, two bike riders were crossing Figueroa at Marmion Way in the crosswalk at 3:02 am when one was hit by car traveling at what police estimated as 80 mph, based on witness reports.

At that speed, there is virtually no chance of survival. Especially since the victim was dragged several hundred feet underneath the car as it sped away.

Witnesses say the driver never braked, before or after hitting the victim.

The second rider wasn’t struck. No word on whether they were riding or walking in the crosswalk.

The victim has not been publicly identified; he is described only as a man in his 20s.

The car’s bumper was left lying in the road, which should make the car easy to identify if it can be found. Police are looking for a small black sedan, possibly a Nissan Altima.

There should be an automatic $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the driver, based on the hit-and-run reward program recently passed by the city council.

Despite overwhelming support in public meetings, plans for a road diet to improve safety on North Figueroa were halted by Councilmember Gil Cedillo.

Cedillo claimed he was canceling the plans for safety reasons, an argument this morning’s wreck has proven wrong.

Now he has to answer to the victim’s family. And the rest of us.

This is the 34th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 15th in LA County; it’s also the eighth in the City of Los Angeles.

Update: An arrest has been made in the case.

According to KTLA-5, a witness tipped police to the location of the abandoned vehicle, which had biological matter from the victim on it.

That led them to 21-year old Alexis Virto, who was found asleep in bed with his girlfriend at 7:15 am, roughly four hours after the collision.

Virto was still drunk when he was taken into custody. He insisted that he wasn’t the driver; however, he had injuries consistent with a crash, and windshield debris clinging to his hair.

He was booked on suspicion of second-degree murder and felony drunk driving with great bodily injury.

The LA Times reports the victim is a 33-year old man, whose identity is being withheld pending notification of his family.

The Times also says there were 68 collisions that resulted in severe injuries to bicyclists on that stretch of North Figueroa between 2002 and 2012; there were also nine pedestrians killed in that time period.

Meanwhile, anti-bike Figueroa activist and Boulevard Sentinel editor Tom Topping had this to say:

Why was this person on the street at 3am? Usually only meth-head criminals looking for something to steal are riding around on bikes at that hour.

Update 2: The LA District Attorney’s office has finally identified the victim as Jose Luna, also known as Bizzy.

According to the press release, his alleged killer, Alexis Virto, has been charged with one count each of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, driving under the influence of an alcoholic beverage causing injury, driving with a .08% blood alcohol content causing injury and hit and run driving resulting in death or serious injury to another person. Not surprisingly, he entered a plea of not guilty to each count.

Virto reported drove the length of two football fields with Luna on the hood of his car.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jose “Bizzy” Luna and his family. 

Thanks to everyone who tipped me off to this story. And thanks to fig4all and Terri Moore for their help in IDing the victim.

Morning Links: Metro commits to DTLA bikeshare, US pros swear they’re clean, and $50K reward for fatal hit-and-run

It’s official.

DTLA is getting an $11 million bikeshare program next spring, with 1,100 bikes and 65 stations around the Downtown area. Plans are to expand into nine other neighborhoods by 2017.

However, the system to be installed by Philadelphia’s Bicycle Transit Systems is unlikely to be compatible with other bikeshares in Long Beach and Santa Monica, as well as other Westside locations.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton says we should let the disparate systems thrive. I wish I could share his optimism; my fear is that multiple, incompatible bikeshare systems will doom them to failure.

Let’s hope I’m wrong.

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2013 Tour de France winner Chris Froome blames overzealous hotel workers for his missed blood test earlier this year. US riders swear they’re clean, too, while Teejay says his homie Lance deserves a second chance.

Peter Stetina hopes to return to racing this year after a horrific crash in Spain last spring. NPR profiles rising Columbian rider Nairo Quintana.

Women will ride some of the same routes as the men in Colorado’s USA Pro Challenge this year; the first American Gio Donne winner is looking forward to it.

And British pro Lizzie Armistead has recovered from her recent collision with finish line photographers, and will be racing in the country’s national championships this weekend.

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Local

LA’s recently passed hit-and-run reward system is being put into practice, offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the heartless jerk who killed Manuel Enrique Mendoza-Hernandez in South Park earlier this month. Meanwhile, KCRW talks hit-and-run.

CiclaValley pens an ode to the 300 volunteers helping to put on Sunday’s LA River Ride. I’m planning to be there, so stop by the main LACBC booth and say hi after your ride.

Malibu’s city council approved the new PCH safety study by a vote of four to zero; as the story notes, the problems will come when it’s time to implement the recommendations over the likely objections of local residents.

Some Redondo Beach residents are declaring the city’s new separated bike lanes, sharrows and reverse-angle parking a failure a whole week after they were officially unveiled.

Sounds like fun. Flying Pigeon is hosting the Nobody Can Hear You Scream in Space Ride Saturday night.

 

State

For reasons that probably only make sense to them, the CHP opposes a statewide hit-and-run alert system; you’re urged to voice your support for the bill before Monday.

The OC Register says the adult tricycle rider killed with her dog in a suspected DUI collision was riding at one of the most dangerous times of day; CHP records put the greatest risk to bike riders between 6 pm and 7 pm, and 10 pm to 11 pm. The victim still hasn’t been publicly identified.

The bike rider who was deliberately run down by the UC Santa Barbara shooter has filed a lawsuit against the shooter’s parents, as well as the university, the county and the sheriff’s department.

 

National

A 9-year old girl was shot in the leg while riding her bike in Lincoln NE, while a cancer patient riding cross-country to raise awareness was robbed at gunpoint in Tennessee.

Pittsburgh is experiencing a bikelash over proposed bike lanes, as the city attempts to get people out of their cars.

Danish Race Across America (RAAM) competitor Anders Tesgaard has been critically injured in a collision with a pickup in West Virginia; his support van had reportedly stopped for gas, leaving Tesgaard unprotected on the roadway.

DC residents don’t exactly respond positively to an OpEd calling for bikes on the sidewalks.

The Episcopal Church is doing some soul searching following the drunken hit-and-run death of a cyclist at the hands of a now-former Baltimore Bishop.

Now that’s more like it. A Florida man gets 20 years — yes, 20 — for the hit-and-run death of a bike rider.

 

International

A bike thief with a conscience returns the BMX bike he stole and rebuilt, and offers a heartfelt apology to the parents of the bike’s 11-year old Calgary owner eight months after he died in an accident — and exact one year after he first brought the bike home.

Speaking of Calgary, the local police get it, saying of you’re too drunk to drive, you’re too drunk to ride. But if they had to choose, they’d rather see you drunk on two wheels than behind one.

London mayoral candidates says the priority given to motor vehicles in the city has to end. Any chance we could get them to move here?

A salmon cyclist reportedly yelled at a UK pedestrian to get out of the way before slamming into her and riding off, breaking her leg in five places.

English police arrest a 26-year old motorist on suspicion of murder following a fatal bike collision, though Britain’s press restrictions prevent them from telling us why.

Yet another British bike race has been sabotaged with pins. And yet another saboteur should face terrorism charges when he, she or they are caught.

Serious cycling injuries are up 8% in Great Britain, however, the increase could be due to a jump in ridership.

An Aussie cyclist says both drivers and bike riders need to be educated on proper road use.

New Zealand commits to building 41 new bikeway projects worth $333 million, the equivalent of $230 million US.

 

Finally…

A Portland Baptist church isn’t really calling for a cover-up of the city’s World Naked Bike Ride. Your next e-bike foldie could provide turn-by-turn navigation and warn you about potholes. But not, evidently, naked bike riders. Or Baptists.

And bikes have headlights, so why not skateboards?

 

Morning Links: Brake-checking driver harasses cyclist; curb-jumping drivers don’t get Redondo bike lanes

The problem with sharrows is that they put you right in the path of drivers.

Impatient, road-raging and brake-checking drivers, at times, as cyclist Michael Schinderling learned out the hard way while riding on Fountain Ave in Los Angeles.

The driver first honks, then repeatedly slams on his brakes in front of him. Even though Schinderling was riding exactly where the sharrows indicate he should be.

The big problem with LA’s cyclist anti-harassment ordinance is that it’s so hard to get proof that a driver deliberately antagonized a rider.

But this looks like an open-and-shut case.

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Caught on video: Those new Redondo Beach separated bike lanes seem to be working well. Except for curb-jumping drivers who can’t seem to figure out why the traffic lane is green and there are so many bikes in it.

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American cyclist Tyler Farrar is heading back to the Tour de France as part of the first African-based pro team, while Tejay van Garderen is older and wiser and says he’s ready for the challenge. The Wall Street Journal asks why no Latin American rider has won the Tour de France, as Nairo Quintana attempts to become the first.

Meanwhile, former pro team leader Bjarne Riis chose to ignore doping by his riders. Or more likely, tacitly encouraged it, if not openly.

Cycling Weekly looks at the best bike tans in the peloton. Dutch police evidently feel the best way to get a new collective bargaining agreement is to delay riders in the Tour de France, thus ensuring it won’t besmirch their country again.

And sad news from the UK, as a British bike racer was killed in a collision with another rider last weekend.

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Local

The LA-area’s Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) wants your input on a new regional transportation plan.

State Assemblymember Richard Bloom and two Westside councilmembers say Metro is going the wrong way with plans for a bike share system that will be incompatible with systems opening soon in Long Beach and Santa Monica, and as well as systems planned for West Hollywood, UCLA and yes, the Biking Black Hole of Beverly Hills.

San Gabriel gets a new bike lane on Las Tunas Drive.

Santa Clarita opens a new 1.5 mile stretch of the Santa Clarita River Trail, including a bike bridge over the Los Angeles aqueduct.

A Long Beach councilwoman will host a bike safety program for kids from 9 to 17 years old next week.

The second Tour de Laemmle will roll on July 19th, as Greg Laemmle invites you to ride with him on all or part of a 125+ mile tour of all the Laemmle Theaters.

 

State

Santa Ana conducts a reverse road diet, forcing long-time residents out of their homes to make room for an added lane and bike lanes on Warner Ave, as the OC Register says evicted residents will have to be made whole.

A bike rider suffered major injuries in a collision with a pickup in Anaheim on Tuesday; a comment on Bike Forums suggests the victim was riding in the crosswalk over the onramp to the 57. Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the link.

Big oops from the Bay, as San Francisco retracts a report that a new bikeway saw a 651% jump in bike traffic; the actual figures ranged from a 12% to 62% increase depending on time of day. You’d think someone would have noticed that those numbers seemed just a tad high before sending out the press release.

Oakland is planning to trade traffic lanes for bike lanes, with twelve road diets proposed for the next three years; needless to say, bike riders are thrilled while motorists are worried. Maybe Oakland could explain how the process works to Santa Ana.

The Marin tech exec who viciously beat a driver who clipped him with his mirror has been found guilty of felony battery and misdemeanor assault; he faces up to four years in prison. Seriously, never resort to violence. Period.

 

National

Tragic news from Las Vegas, as a 16-year old boy riding without ID was hit by a car last week; he died the next day before family members learned about the wreck and he could be identified.

A Utah driver has plead guilty to intentionally running down a bike rider with whom he had an adversarial relationship.

Evidently, the penalty in Texas for riding a bike without lights is to get Tased, then beaten after falling off your bike. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

An Iowa man is back on his bike six months after losing a leg to complications from diabetes; he’ll be riding in the Tour de Cure this weekend.

Needless to say, Chicago business owners are worried about the loss of parking with the city’s first curb-protected bike lane; Chicagoist asks if it will be good for business. Bikes are usually good for business. And there’s something seriously wrong if your customers won’t walk a few extra feet to do business with you.

A Maine driver is accused of intentionally running down a 10-year old boy on a bike over a dispute with the kid’s mother; unbelievably, the man was released on just $1,000 bail — despite using his car as a weapon to attack a child.

Just days after an LA bike rider was attacked with a machete in an attempted bike theft, a machete-swinging road-raging PA teenager attacked a cyclist and his fiancée, who used his bike to defend themselves.

The Baltimore Sun says bike helmets aren’t ugly anymore, while The Week offers a look at six bike helmets of the future. Can we just get one that actually protects against concussions and other serious brain injuries in real world collisions?

A Georgia website offers advice on how to get a red light to change for your bike.

A cyclist rides 1,400 miles up the East Coast while towing his dog and a cargo trailer.

 

International

Here we go again, as a Facebook page devoted to shaming law-breaking Victoria BC cyclists devolves into a hotbed of anti-bike hatred.

Two Edmonton councilors call for ripping out bike lanes on three streets, calling them unsafe and underutilized.

Cyclists halt London traffic to protest the death of yet another young woman killed by a truck while riding to work. Although not everyone was willing to show a little respect.

Caught on video: The UK’s “vigilante cyclist” catches a woman texting behind the wheel with two kids in her car. I see something similar almost every time I ride. Like a woman who was steering with her knees as she texted with her kids in the back seat.

A pair of Good Samaritans pitch in to replace a British nurse’s bike after it was stolen from outside her apartment.

A Brit bike rider gets a year in jail for killing a 73-year old woman in a collision while riding a brakeless BMX.

Switzerland is telling e-bike riders to slow down, following a rise in single-vehicle bike wrecks due to riders misjudging their speed and stopping times.

India gets its first cycling café in the “Detroit of India” even though the city doesn’t have a single bike lane.

Australian bike riders may soon be allowed to ride on sidewalks in the state of Victoria, but could face on-the-spot fines for using a handheld phone. So what happens if they can’t pay? Are they arrested on the spot?

“Selfish” Aussie cyclists are accused of illegally riding in high-speed bus-only lanes to avoid slower bikeways.

Don’t ride under the influence in Japan, don’t report a falling down drunk bike rider to the police, and don’t ride with groceries on your handlebars.

 

Finally…

It takes a bold thief to ride off with a bike cop’s bike as she stood just a few feet away. Caught on video: an Ohio bird defends his territory against a cyclist. Or maybe he just doesn’t like they guy’s taste in bike helmets.

And a new study from the University of Duh confirms that marijuana use impairs driving. Next up, a study confirming that it gives people the munchies, too.

……..

I need to find a better name for the Morning Links, since I seem to be temporally challenged these days. Chain Links is too cutsie, while Bike News seems a little dull.

Any suggestions?

LA bike rider attacked with machete, bad news from Hemet, plus Bicycle Coffee and pleasant private bike cops

In one of the most horrifying attacks in recent memory, a Los Angeles man may have kept his bike, but lost one of his thumbs.

And nearly his life.

According to multiple sources, a 43-year old man was walking — or possibly riding — his bicycle near the intersection of West 12th Street and South Burlington Avenue around 12:30 am Sunday, when he was attacked by four men who tried to steal his bike and wallet.

One of them hacked at him with a two-foot machete, resulting in a severe cuts to both arms, as well as a fractured skull, in addition to having his left thumb cut off; early reports suggest he was likely to lose his right hand, as well.

Despite his injuries, he somehow managed to run a few blocks to get help; at last report, he was hospitalized in critical condition. However, he was able to keep both his bike and his money.

The attackers were described only as young adult men, possibly 18 – 21 years old, who fled in a green four-door sedan. According to police, the attack did not appear to be gang related.

For some reason, the victim was initially described as an 18-year old man before police corrected the report.

Let’s hope he recovers quickly, and that police catch his attackers.

And let this be a reminder that no bike is worth your life.

………

Brace yourself for bad news.

A man was found dead on Hemet biking trail on Sunday, hours after a 33-year old mountain biker was reported missing.

The victim has not been identified yet, and here’s no confirmation yet that it’s the missing cyclist. But it doesn’t look good.

Hopefully, we’ll learn more soon.

Update: Authorities have identified the man found dead as 33-year old Hemet resident Shane Gainer, but for some reason, won’t confirm if he is the missing cyclist. No cause of death has been determined. 

………

Bicycle-Coffee-1Now let’s switch to a happier subject.

On Sunday, my wife and I made a short trip to the Hollywood Farmer’s Market at Ivar and Selma, just a few blocks from the Hollywood and Vine Metro station.

Sans bikes, since she doesn’t ride. And without the Corgi, since even well-behaved dogs aren’t allowed under LA County health rules.

The purpose of our journey was to find the elusive Bicycle Coffee Company.

Elusive, because the LA branch at Santa Monica and Western is only open Friday though Sunday. And despite our best efforts, we hadn’t been able to get there when the doors were open.

Bicycle-Coffee-3On the other hand, we knew they were at the farmer’s market every Sunday, just a short subway ride way from our apartment.

It took some searching to find their Nishiki-towed bicycle cart — yes, there’s a reason for their name — hidden back behind the other vendors near the Arclight, nee Cinerama, Theater, and just in front of Umami Burgers.

We left with a couple bags of what is reputed to be some of the area’s best coffee, each accompanied by a free cup of joe with purchase.

And the knowledge that next time, we can just order our beans and they’ll deliver by bike within a roughly 10-mile radius.

……..

On the way out, I stopped to admire a bike belonging to one of the security guards with the BID Patrol at the farmer’s market.

Rosales-1And found myself talking with retired LAPD officer and dedicated cyclist Jim Rosales, who was happy to point out the 29” wheels and disc brakes, as well as the rear rack for the panniers he usually uses but decided to leave at home that day.

We talked about his volunteer work patrolling the Santa Monica mountains, the road bike he rides in his spare time, and the fixie he’s currently building. As well as his favorite bike shops, including the Performance Bike his brother-in-law wrenches for in Pasadena.

Kanagi-bikeAll in all, a pleasant talk with another rider. And one more example of a conversation that would never have happened behind the wheel.

Then just as we were about to leave, I noticed the pink handgrips on his partner’s bike. So he called her over, and fellow BID security officer Cortney Kanagi was happy to show us her matching pink handcuffs and the pink grip on her handgun.

Proof that you can be feminine while riding a bike.

Or subduing a suspect.

Kanagi-2

Weekend Links: Bikeshare finally coming to LA, and fighting among ourselves won’t make bicycling to grow

It looks like bikeshare is finally coming to Los Angeles.

According to Streetsblog, Metro’s Planning and Programming Committee approved a contract for the first phase of the program, starting with 1,000 bikes in Downtown Los Angeles before hopefully spreading to other parts of the city.

Metro selected Bicycle Transit Systems, operator of Philadelphia’s Indego system. And they pinkie swear the system will be interoperable with the bikeshares in Santa Monica and Long Beach.

The LADOT Bike Blog says Metro’s goal is to allow rentals using a TAP card, so it becomes an extension of the transit system. And calls bikeshare an ideal fit for LA.

Which is true, as long as we have the infrastructure network in place to keep riders safe. And that currently exists only in DTLA.

Then again, this isn’t the first time it’s been promised.

Meanwhile, Santa Monica has announced their proposed rate structure, ranging from $6 for a one-hour rental to $25 a month for one hour per day of riding. Annual passes start at $119, or $79 for SaMo residents; Santa Monica College students get a discount at just $47 a year.

Looks like I may have to go back to college.

………

Mobility Lab says if we want people to like bicyclists, we all need to slow down, lose our helmets and spandex and buy cruiser bikes.

Screw that.

Despite what some have to say, we won’t win any battles if we turn on ourselves, and say one way to ride a bike is right and every other way is wrong.

We should expect everyone to ride courteously and safely.

Beyond that, there is nothing inherently wrong with riding fast for sport, just as there is nothing wrong with a moderately paced ride to work or a leisurely cruise along the beach.

And there is nothing wrong with dressing for the kind of riding you do, whether that means Lycra, jeans, shorts or a dress.

Our strength comes from working together to support all forms of bicycling, by every kind of rider. Demonizing one form of riding and dividing bicycling into various camps is the best way to ensure we conquer ourselves.

……..

Long Beach-based bike advocate extraordinaire Charlie Gandy goes car free after his trusty Jeep dies.

……..

The National Brotherhood of Cyclists is attempting to band bike advocacy groups together to bring equity to the front of the movement.

Speaking of which, there will be a Ghost Bike Ride for Justice in South LA Saturday evening.

……..

The US amateur and junior cycling championships will come to Truckee and North Lake Tahoe next week.

VeloNews talks with Ian Crane, the pro rider who nearly died after a gut-wrenching crash through the window of a race vehicle during last year’s USA Pro Challenge.

Pro cyclist John Degenkolb says dopers are still thriving, and bike racing will never be 100% clean.

Or any other sport, for that matter.

………

Local

Los Angeles residents continue to drive less.

LA’s Topanga Creek Bicycles is honored as the small business of the year for California’s 27th Senate District.

A Santa Monica traffic safety group says an analysis of traffic collisions over a 10-year period shows bikes aren’t to blame for road injuries, cars are.

A Manhattan Beach man plans to ride 3,800 miles from one Manhattan Beach to another,

 

State

San Diego cyclists may be down but not out after a kick in the pants by the local Association of Governments.

An Indio cop says he fatally shot a bike rider who hadn’t threatened him because he was mourning the death of a fellow officer. Oh, well okay, then.

Wealthy Rancho Mirage once again votes to block a planned 50-mile bike path around the Coachella Valley.

A hit-and-run cyclist flees the scene after crashing into an 81-year old woman in a San Francisco intersection. Jerk.

A Sacramento columnist calls for a ban on sidewalk riding after she and her husband are nearly hit by the sort of rider who probably wouldn’t obey it anyway. Meanwhile, a DC sidewalk rider asks why all the hate?

Davis is installing solar powered bike lockers to encourage cyclists to leave their bikes at the station.

 

National

ESPN discovers women’s bike polo. And yes, it is a badass sport.

Seven people suffering from Parkinson’s are riding 464 miles across the Rockies as part of a 30-member Davis Phinney Foundation team.

A Montana fixie-riding bike commuter experiences firsthand what it’s like to be hit by a stop sign-running driver.

A new Texas mom on her first outing after giving birth saves the life of a bike rider after noticing him slumped on the side of the road with a massive heart attack.

A local website asks how bike-friendly Louisville KY really is after the city gets bumped up to Silver status.

Evidently, aggressive cyclists are the biggest problem in the Twin Cities, as a writer offers up six ways to tell you’re a bike jerk. And London, too.

The family of a bike rider who was killed in a New Jersey amateur race settles a lawsuit against the organizers for $7.1 million; the victim collided with a race referee while riding at 30 mph.

Cute story from Philadelphia, as a young kid on a bike joins a couple of bike cops out on parole, then gets a tour of a fire station.

A bike rider once again beats a driver and a bus rider in a race to see who can commute faster in Savannah GA.

An LSU fan site says a football player should be banished from the program for beating a man and punching his girlfriend. But evidently, stealing a bike was okay.

 

International

McDonald’s introduces to-go packaging specially designed for use on bikes overseas. So what are we, chopped liver?

A Canadian boy suffering from a brain tumor gets a new bike after his was stolen.

Calgary’s new bike network comes in under budget after engineers scrap plans for bike signal lights; even so, ridership is already 25% above projections.

Caught on video: Sniggering Brit hooligans film themselves pushing a cyclist off his bike from a passing car. Hopefully authorities will show them just how stupid they were to post it online — let alone do it.

A London cyclist suffers a broken leg when he’s mugged for his bike.

An English TV presenter says bike riding is London is too dangerous, and cars should be banned from the city center. Getting rid of the blind spot on large trucks could help, too.

A Brit rider making a comeback in racing after 16 years off the bike offers advice on how to stay married and ride your bike, too.

A 19-year old British bike rider is two-thirds of the way through his attempt to become the youngest person to ride around the world.

A Dublin bike rider is searching for the Good Samaritan who drove her in search of a bike shop after she double flatted in a fall.

 

Finally…

Caught on video: A bike-riding London mayor tells an angry cabbie to “fuck off and die.” The London Press freaks out over a texting cyclist riding with no hands in relative safely.

And London’s Telegraph offers a tongue-in-cheek test to see just how much of a cycling psycho you really are.

Apparently, if I’m not a bike messenger, I should be.

 

Morning Links: Businesses benefit by trading parking for bike lanes, and new upscale spinning studio in DTLA

A new study from UC San Diego shows what we already knew.

The seemingly endless and nearly universal argument over parking versus bike lanes is no more valid than the mythical war on cars.

According to San Diego’s KPBS, after looking at cities all over the globe, researchers concluded that designing cities for active transportation — in other words, bicycling and walking — resulted in increased retail activity.

Or to put it another way, greater sales. And presumably, profits.

In fact, one study found that people who bike or walk to shop spend up to $200 a month more in a given store than people who drive. And there’s no research that shows removing street parking negatively impacts business, despite the fears of nearly every business owner, everywhere.

Someone should tell that to Gil Cedillo and Paul Koretz.

And the benefits go beyond just retail sales. As the article says,

The report says there is increased business revenue and economic development in cities designed for physical activity. The researchers said prioritizing the needs of bike riders and walkers over drivers can have broad reaching and positive impact on communities, including healthier citizens and a cleaner environment.

……..

I’m a firm believer in doing all my cycling outside.

However, for those who prefer to ride indoors, for whatever reason, the new BESPOKE Cycling Studio is now open at FIGat7th in DTLA.

As they describe it,

BESPOKE Cycling Studio offers clients the new carbon blue technology bikes for better performance and for an authentic outdoor ride feel and virtually zero maintenance.  This coupled with lightweight performance handlebars with ErgoLoop, aero bars, and 12 degree incline enable multiple user positions and increased comfort levels.

In addition to offering a unique fitness experience for spinning enthusiasts guests at BESPOKE also have access to complimentary shoe rentals, L¹Occitane natural beauty shower amenities, an alkaline water station, and conveniences such as digital lockers, towels, and fresh fruit. Clients can also opt-in to their tailored fit services including preset cycling shoes, weights and bikes that help them sculpt and tone all in an uplifting fast-paced class.

……..

Local

KTLA-5 is giving away two American Flyer Wave bicycle-shaped objects bikes every day this week.

 

State

The Race Across America (RAAM) kicks off with solo riders departing from Oceanside today, followed by teams on Saturday.

Google wants to turn Silicon Valley into the American Copenhagen with a low-stress cycling network, although plans for Mountain View may be in jeopardy after the city rejected a proposal to expand its office space.

 

National

The Wall Street Journal profiles a tandem riding Colorado couple, and offers advice on how to get one of your very own. A tandem, that is, not a couple from Colorado.

The Missoula MT marathon is accused of discriminating against disabled athletes who wanted to compete using handcycles.

Hays KS police explain what bike lanes mean, and say cyclists must wear proper attire. I assume that means coat and tie for the men?

Grand Rapids MI is the latest city to get bike share before LA; even tiny ski resort Jackson Hole WY is trying it out before we do.

The World (not really) Naked Bike Ride makes its way to Gotham.

New York plans a bike safety blitz because a pedestrian stepped in front of a bicyclist riding in a bike lane, who didn’t stop after hitting her. After all, it would just be silly to conduct a pedestrian safety blitz.

Just weeks after Secretary of State John Kerry broke his leg riding in France, the US Secretary of Commerce is out of action after hitting gravel on her bike while training for a triathlon.

North Carolina cyclists are urging the state Senate to oppose a provision that would require the state Board of Transportation to approve any road diets.

Thirty New Orleans police officers receive 16 hours of bike and pedestrian safety training to get a better feel for the obstacles both face on the roads.

Political will is needed to make South Florida cyclists safer. Or anywhere else, for that matter.

 

International

Toronto riders call for a citywide grid of protected bike lanes following three cycling deaths in the last two weeks.

West London sees a more than 10% increase in bicycling injuries in the last four years — and a nearly 20% increase in injuries to middle-aged men. However, that could be a result of increased ridership. Or out-of-shape blokes thinking they’re better riders than they really are.

A British Parliament member slams government plans to cut funding for bicycling.

This is why throwing tacks on the road isn’t just a prank. A rider in a Welsh Velothon suffers a nasty gash requiring surgery after suffering a blowout.

Keep your credit card handy. Irish riders who blow reds will soon face on-the-spot fines of 50 euros, the equivalent of $56.

The first woman to ride across Africa now plans to pedal across Antarctica via the South Pole.

A Canadian cyclist riding in Singapore is fined $2,500 — the equivalent of $1,855 US — for allegedly brake-checking an angry driver, then throwing his bike onto the hood of the car after the driver bumps his wheel.

 

Finally…

In a case of what the hell were they thinking, the organizer of a Belgium women’s pro race apologizes for rewarding the winners with bikini-clad podium girls. Whatever you do, don’t throw your pink Barbie bike at a group of cops five floors below.

And an academic researcher says the key to getting away with doping is don’t get caught. But apologize if you do.

 

Morning Links: Bike lane riding in the Biking Black Hole; Caltrans looks at active trans; hero cop saves a cyclist

Update: Today is Mobility Monday. Call or email your councilmember to today to urge passage of the LA Mobility Plan — without removing streets like Westwood and North Figueroa from the plan.

Click here for more details and contact information.

……..

Local

Richard Risemberg rides Beverly Hills’ virtually useless bike lane and sharrow combo on Crescent Drive that doesn’t go anywhere most bike riders want to go. Unless you want to look over overly ornate over-sized housing for the over-privileged.

A tragic photo from the LA Sheriff’s Department captured cyclists riding past a fatal auto collision on PCH over the weekend.

Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson says Lance is basically hosed in his upcoming lawsuit. But hints that there may be more serious cheating going on that has nothing to do with bikes.

Been awhile since we checked in with CLR Effect; Michael wonders what a rider was thinking in attempting to make a dangerous left turn off the sidewalk and nearly getting flattened in the process.

 

State

Caltrans finally begins reporting on active transportation.

Cyclelicious rants — aptly, I might add — about bike riders who complain without getting involved.

Fresno police blame the victim of a fatal collision for drifting into the slow lane, even though the driver who hit him fled the scene. So basically, they don’t have statements from anyone involved, but somehow conclude it’s the victim’s fault.

 

National

Five priests and seminarians complete a 1,400 mile, 11 state bike tour to promote vocations in the priesthood.

A Boulder CO business leader questions plans to right size — or road diet — some of the city’s primary streets.

Cyclists from Lance’s hometown are concerned about a proposal from a Texas congressman to keep gas taxes from being used for anything that doesn’t directly benefit motor vehicles. Here’s a hint: try not to elect people like that in the first place. 

A Tulsa cop saves the life of a cyclist who collapsed during a criterium.

St. Paul MN business owners are worried about losing parking spots so bike lanes can be put in. Even though the city promised to replace them around the corner.

A Boston website says bike polo is the coolest, weirdest sport you’ve never heard of. Except you have, right?

A Staten Island writer says if cyclists want respect, we have to earn it. Never mind that scofflaw drivers break the law, too. And yes, the NYPD tickets bike riders on a regular basis, deserved and otherwise.

A bizarre quirk in NYPD policy means most drivers can’t be charged under the city’s new Right of Way law designed to protect cyclists and pedestrians, because they only send out detectives authorized to do it if the victim is likely to die.

David Letterman says he’s going to leave bicycling to younger men because he doesn’t want to be found in a ditch somewhere. Uh, Dave, women actually ride too these days. And most don’t end up in ditches.

 

International

The BBC looks at how Rapha became Rapha.

A new Brit study says bike riders suffer a frightening near-miss on the roads an average of every week. Sounds like we have a lot in common.

Yet another British bike rider has been injured by thugs who strung wire at neck height across a bike trail. Meanwhile, a Welsh bike ride is marred by tacks sprinkled in the roadway; one rider was injured after flatting at 35 mph.

Caught on video: Cyclists come the rescue of a London bike share rider who was pulled off his bike in a dispute with bystanders blocking his way.

A buzzard attacks a Northern Irish bike rider; no, not the carrion-eating scavengers we know and love.

Emirati women are encouraged to take up bicycling during Ramadan to stay in shape. But not during fasting hours.

A letter writer says mountain biking has become one of the most prominent sports in Swaziland.

Aussie police are trying to figure out what happened to a cyclist who was found unconscious, battered and broken on the side of the road; GPS data suggests he was cut off by a car.

Good idea. A car designer has developed a new bike light that illuminates the road on either side, as well as in front, of the bicycle; it’s still over $20,000 short of the $62,598 goal. That odd goal comes from converting $80,000 Australian dollars to US currency.

 

Finally…

There’s no need for your kids to learn how to balance on a bike when the bike will do it for them. Your next riding jacket could have built-in turn signals, lights and an anti-collision warning system.

And when a gang makes fun of your hi-viz cycling attire, just keep riding. Seriously.

 

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