Tag Archive for Los Angeles

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

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

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

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

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

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

Drunk or otherwise.

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

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

Popular Mechanics questions when ebikes cease to be bicycles.

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

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

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

Still here?

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

But don’t take my word for it.

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

All was not good, however.

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

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

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

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

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Local

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

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

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

 

State

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

Dockless bikeshare comes to downtown San Diego.

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

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

 

National

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

International

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Competitive Cycling

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

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

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

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

 

Finally…

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

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

 

Morning Links: LA Times Op-Ed objects to O’Farrell tweet and compares traffic safety denying drivers to the NRA

Evidently, I may have started something.

A few weeks ago, I responded to Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell’s tweet about gun control by suggesting he focus on street safety instead, which he could actually do something about.

Especially since he had just announced he was killing plans for the long-planned Temple Street road diet.

I was surprised when O’Farrell responded.

And shocked when that response turned out to be “Nice try.”

And I wasn’t the only one, as dozens of people responded with varying degrees of disappointment and outrage at the cavalier attitude reflected in O’Farrell’s dismissive two-word answer.

Now Michael MacDonald, who you may be more familiar with as topomodesto, has written a hard-hitting Op-Ed for the LA Times, inspired by that exchange.

When it comes to standing up to the gun lobby, Los Angeles’ leaders are rightly all-in. Our city has some of the strictest gun control laws in the country, and a recent bill by L.A. City Councilman Mitch O’Farrell would boycott companies that do business with the National Rifle Association. As the United States coalesces around the courageous teenage survivors of gun violence in Parkland, Chicago and Ferguson to challenge the NRA’s political clout, L.A.’s elected officials are uniting our city in solidarity.

When it comes to fighting traffic violence, however, these same leaders can’t seem to find the same political moxie.

He goes on to compare the actions of the small group of traffic safety deniers, which seem to have too many on the city council cowed in fear, with the actions of the NRA.

In both gun-violence and traffic-violence policy, the battleground is science and data. The NRA and its supporters oppose any efforts to study gun violence in a way that would inform policy making, blocking federal funding for gun violence research for over 20 years.

L.A.’s anti-traffic-safety lobby, meanwhile, vocally questions the accuracy of data collected on traffic injuries and deaths. One federally classified “proven safety countermeasure” in particular has become a target for their obfuscation: the street safety reconfigurations known as “road diets.”…

And yet — invoking a distinctly Trump-like paranoia and embrace of alternative facts — anti-safety activists routinely contend that these national studies are wrong: that road diets make streets more dangerous and are part of a nefarious plot of social engineering “meant to force citizens of L.A. into public transit under the guise of safety,” as one Playa del Rey resident declared on Twitter.

It’s well worth taking a few minutes to read, because MacDonald couldn’t have done a better job of identifying the problem. Or the solution.

And because Mitch O’Farrell is just the latest in what’s becoming a long list of LA councilmembers putting angry drivers ahead of human lives and livability.

You can find a more legible version of that tweet exchange at LA Streetsblog.

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Toronto removes speed signs intended slow drivers down after getting complaints that they slow drivers down.

Proof that Los Angeles isn’t the only city that tosses both logic and Vision Zero out the window when drivers object.

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Local

Now you, too, can become an LAPD bike cop.

Turmoil on the Westchester Neighborhood Council, as six members quit in a dispute over whether to boot two other members, including an opponent of the Playa del Rey road diets who hasn’t bothered to attend a meeting in the last six months.

You still have time to weigh in with your thoughts on how LA County should remake Rosemead Blvd into a complete street.

 

State

San Diego’s mayor drops plans for nine miles of curb-protected bike lanes, which would have caused years of delay and more than doubled the cost compared to using plastic bollards and parking-protected lanes.

Life is cheap in Bakersfield, where a wealthy vintner from a prominent family was sentenced to just 90 days in jail for killing a bike-riding mother of five while driving at over twice the legal alcohol limit. Prosecutors blamed the victim for having drugs in her system, and not wearing bright clothing or riding in a crosswalk — neither of which are required for bicyclists. Thanks to Jefferey Fylling for the heads-up.

 

National

Somehow we missed this one earlier this year, as an Oregon man is the only person in the state with a disabled parking permit for a bicycle. Thanks to Eric Rogers for the link.

Outside asks what’s going on with Niner, which was recently acquired in bankruptcy by the owner of Huffy; the mountain bikes will continue to be made in my hometown, at least for now.

A Colorado legal expert examines the question of just how far to the right you should ride. Most of which applies here in California, although we still have the outdated requirement to ride as far to the right as practicable, rather than Colorado’s more progressive statute.

It takes a major lowlife to steal the bicycles residents of a San Antonio TX rehab center use to get to work; fortunately, kindhearted locals helped replace them.

A new study from the University of Arkansas confirms what you’ve already been told dozens of times — you need to drink before you’re thirsty when you ride.

This is why people keep dying on our streets: Illinois police arrest a drunk driver who passed out at a gas station with an open bottle of Crown Royal after trying to fill her car with kerosene; she has six previous DUIs in six states, and was driving without a license. Some people will never stop driving until we start taking cars from drunk and stoned drivers, instead of just their licenses. Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the heads-up.

A Massachusetts Op-Ed says a cyclist killed in a collision with a truck was a safe and careful rider, and wouldn’t have swerved in front of a massive truck without signaling, despite what the local victim-blaming DA claims.

Toyota teams with New York’s Priority Bicycles to build what they call the world’s safest bicycle by incorporating safety sensors and other features found on a Camry.

As usual, a plan to improve safety on a Philadelphia bike lane brings out people who say it doesn’t go far enough, and others who think it goes too far.

This is the cost of traffic violence: Pro wrestling Hall of Famer “Luscious” Johnny Valiant was killed in a collision with a truck driver while crossing a Pennsylvania street.

The bike-riding woman who gained worldwide fame for flipping off President Trump’s motorcade explains why she’s suing after getting fired for doing it.

A Charleston SC newspaper wonders why it’s so hard to get a bike lane on the bridge across the Ashley River, a debate that’s gone on since at least 1933.

A local newspaper remembers the black bike shop owner who prospered in a small Alabama town in the first half of the last century, despite being the son of former slaves.

 

International

A group of Calgary students have developed a bizarre new triangular bike gearing system to keep your drive chain from freezing and corroding during winter riding.

Bicyclists in Quebec argue that a proposed dramatic increase in fines for bicycling violations will simply keep people from riding.

A London website wonders why there are so few black and Asian bike riders in the city.

Even in the Netherlands, kids need more practice riding their bikes to avoid being clumsy, unsafe cyclists.

Italian bike riders are fighting to reclaim their space on the street in a country with almost no infrastructure for bicycles.

Horrifying news from Majorca, Spain, as a Porsche driver plowed into a group of nine cyclists, critically injuring one rider; the driver failed a roadside drug test.

The Evening Standard says the booming growth of Chinese dockless bikeshare is emblematic of the rapidly changing Chinese economy.

 

Competitive Cycling

The Wall Street Journal’s Jason Gay says you can have Tiger Woods and the Masters; he’ll be watching Paris-Roubaix this weekend, aka the Hell of the North.

Cycling Tips relates the sad tale of two-time Paris-Roubaix champ Charles Crupelandt, which reads like a Greek tragedy.

The LA Times profiles next month’s Amgen Tour of California, which starts in Long Beach May 13th — for the men, that is; the women have to settle for three stages in Central California.

Eleven things not to do on your first crit.

 

Finally…

Who needs a bike cam when you can just have your drone follow you everywhere? It may look like a bike, but you probably wouldn’t want to ride it.

And introducing five-time Tour de France champ Bernard Renault, the greatest cyclist you’ve never heard of.

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A special thanks to John H and an anonymous donor for their generous contributions to the unofficial BikinginLA dead computer replacement campaign

 

Morning Links: Invasion of the dockless electric scooters, and Lincoln Blvd to be widened in Marina del Rey

Evidently, we were one day too soon with yesterday’s photo of a LimeBike electric scooter, since dockless scooters are today’s common theme.

Vanity Fair says San Francisco is being overrun with dockless scooters.

Wired says the invasion of the dockless scooters raises questions of who the streets and sidewalks are for, and which vehicles get priority.

A reviewer for the Washington Post says LimeBike scooters offer a whimsical ride, but he can’t imagine an adult ever using a dockless scooter.

And yet, I see people using them all the time in my neighborhood, and they haven’t even come to Hollywood yet.

In case you missed it. Upper photo from the Bird Scooter Instagram page.

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Local

Caltrans plans to widen a slightly more than half-mile strip of Lincoln Blvd in Marina del Rey to make more room for bike lanes and sidewalks. And more cars, of course.

 

State

Plans are proceeding for what will eventually be a continuous 27-mile bike trail through San Diego’s North County region.

Evidently, Jump ped-assist ebike dockless bikeshare is coming to Davis. Although it would be nice if the story actually said that.

Ukiah’s police chief offers safety tips for pedestrians and bike riders, telling the latter to act like a car. Somehow, I don’t see how guzzling fuel and spewing noxious odors while endangering everyone around you will actually make anyone safer.

 

National

People for Bikes is looking for a new business and political engagement manager.

Honolulu drivers are confused by a new parking protected bike lane.

Bicyclists will get one last chance to ride Seattle’s Alaskan Way viaduct before it’s torn down next year.

A Jackson Hole WY sixth grader has been riding his bike to school all winter, despite the cold and snow.

Pro choice advocates followed San Antonio TX Google employees to work on billboard-bearing cargo bikes to protest false search results.

A Brooklyn paper says overcrowding on the Brooklyn Bridge has reached a breaking point as pedestrians and bike riders were turned away by police.

The Columbia Journalism Review advises reporters not to blame the victims in bike and pedestrian crashes.

The NYPD blocks a raised bike lane through Times Square to provide security for theater patrons, less than two months after previously reopening it.

Philadelphia bike riders call for protected bike lanes, despite city plans to move existing buffered lanes from the right side of a pair of one-way streets to the left, and improve intersection crossings.

The war on bikes continues, as a Virginia father is intentionally struck twice by a road raging driver as he was riding with his kids.

Your next bike helmet could look like an ordinary hat thanks to a pair of Virginia Tech students.

Tampa, Florida decides traffic flow is more important than previously planned lane reduction and bike lanes on a redesigned boulevard, suggesting that bicyclists should just ride on back streets instead.

 

International

An Ottawa city councilor is told “we don’t remove bike lanes” after he suggests removing existing bike lanes when separated bike lanes are installed on a nearby street.

British bike advocates ask that vulnerable road users be exempted from a bill that would make injuries valued at less than the equivalent of $7,000 subject to small claims court.

A Welsh cyclist follows the swallows on a second-hand bike as they migrate 4,000 miles to Africa and back. Although a local paper seems amazed he survived.

Copenhagenize author Mikael Colville-Andersen’s new book discusses how bicycles can save our cities.

A bike helmet maker points out that New Zealand’s rate of bicycling deaths dropped after helmets were made mandatory, but fails to recognize that bicycling rates for children and adults dropped as well.

Chinese dockless bikeshare provider Mobike has been sold for $2.7 billion. Dashing hopes that it would merge with fellow Chinese bikeshare provider Ofo to form a new company called Mofo.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dutch rider Fabio Jakobsen won the 2018 Scheldeprijs race race through Belgium and the Netherlands, after winds — and a parked car — knocked out many of the favorites.

Peter Flax offers a tongue-in-cheek ranking of the top 40 cycling dopers.

 

Finally…

Come for the KOMs, stay for the porn ads. If you want to drive a bus, you have to ride a bike.

And forget all those photos of abandoned Chinese bikeshare bikes; in America, we abandon cars instead.

 

Morning Links: Dockless bikeshare rules around the world, and Edinburgh bans cars while Prague bans bikes

Today’s common theme is dockless bikeshare around the world.

Chicago develops what they consider best practices for dealing with dockless bikes, including the right to move them and make the providers pay for it. Although to the best of my knowledge, Los Angeles hasn’t approved any official policies for dealing with dockless bikeshare yet, despite what the story says.

Meanwhile, German cities are wary of the potential posed for sidewalk clutter posed by dockless bikes, and fighting back against badly parked bicycles. Now maybe they know how we feel about all those badly parked cars blocking bike lanes.

Speaking of dockless transportation, the Corgi investigates her first LimeBike scooter in West Hollywood. And no, she wasn’t supposed to be in the picture.

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Another common theme is banning means of transportation from urban centers.

Edinburgh, Scotland joins other cities around the world in planning to restrict driving in the city center to make more room for people traveling by bikes or on foot.

On the other hand, in a truly bizarre decision, Prague bans bicycles from the historic city center to protect pedestrians. But evidently, drivers are free to keep running people over.

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Local

LA Planning is hosting a series of workshops around town to teach the basics of urban planning. And in what may come as a shock to many LA residents, there’s more to planning than just saying no to everything.

 

State

San Diego urges residents to ditch their cars and walk, bike or take transit with the city’s first #TransitTuesday.

A Victorville bicyclist is injured when he’s unable to stop in time, and t-bones a passing car. And somehow, the first, and so far only, comment blames new bike lanes.

Sunnyvale become the latest California city to adopt Vision Zero, even if the San Jose paper can’t seem to get the name straight.

 

National

Yamaha introduces its first self-branded bikes for the American market.

Curbed questions whether human beings should be guinea pigs for testing self-driving cars in cities.

A Chicago bike advocate is working to bring bike libraries to underserved parts of the city.

The local paper in Bowling Green KY wholeheartedly approves of plans to designate nearby rural roads as part of the US Bicycle Route system. Especially since it only involves posting a few signs.

Boston-area bike riders are understandably outraged at a decision absolving a truck driver of blame in the death of a bicyclist because the victim was hidden by the truck’s blindspot. As we noted yesterday, if the driver can’t see a human being almost directly in front of him, the damn truck shouldn’t be allowed on the road. Period.

New York plans to finally drop its ridiculous ebike ban, paving the way for ped-assist bikes, but throttles back plans for throttled bikes.

The widow of a fallen South Carolina cyclist advises drivers to pass bike riders like you love them. Which is exactly how we should pass pedestrians.

A Georgia deputy offers a single line of advice to help keep bike riders safe on the road, and gets it exactly wrong. Bike riders are supposed to stay as far right as practicable, not as far as possible. And are often safest when riding in the middle of the lane, rather than hugging the gutter and encouraging drivers to squeeze past.

A Florida man buys a single speed bike and goes carfree for a year. And liked it.

 

International

Heartbreaking story from the UK, where bicyclists hold a ride to help raise funds to send an 18-year old student’s body back to Egypt, after she was beaten to death on a bus by six other women.

A former Brit bike thief recommends securing your ride with double D-locks.

A new study from the UK shows that bike helmets help prevent facial injuries. Something I learned the hard way when mine helped keep my face intact as I did a faceplant during the incredible beachfront bee incident.

An Irish man bounces back from a massive heart attack and triple bypass surgery to ride 1,000 miles in an upcoming charity ride.

It only took the Cyprus legislature seven years to pass a law that basically says bike riders have to obey traffic laws. And isn’t likely to change anything.

South Africa will now certify businesses as bike friendly.

Sixty-eight percent of Kiwi bicyclists say New Zealand drivers aren’t prepared the share the road.

An Aussie CEO talks bikes, and how riding helps him come up with creative solutions.

 

Finally…

The best bikes for before you’re ready for pedals. Racing your balls off to fight testicular cancer — assuming you have some, of course.

And a University of Nebraska student complains about taking a whole 15 minutes to drive across town, saying it wouldn’t take that long to go five miles in any reputable city.

No, seriously.

Thanks to Todd Munson for that last link.

 

Morning Links: Montero ghost bike ceremony, and Nashville declares transportation independence

Maybe Los Angeles is finally getting fed up with traffic deaths.

Steve S reports at least 100 people turned out last night for the ghost bike installation honoring 15-year old Sebastian Montero, who was killed by an alleged speeding driver in Woodland Hills yesterday.

Montero’s bike was installed on De Soto Ave and Burbank Blvd, across from the entrance to the Kaiser medical center.

Let’s hope the turnout leads to demands for safer streets, so some good can come from this heartbreaking tragedy.

And maybe we won’t have to install another one.

Meanwhile, the GoFundMe account to raise funds for Montero’s funeral expenses has exceeded the original $8,000 goal, and is closing in on the new goal of raising $10,000.

All photos by Steve S.

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Nashville TN has become the first city in the US to declare transportation independence.

Somehow, I can’t imagine today’s LA leadership having the courage to adopt this over the objections of the city’s entitled drivers.

Even though they should.

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Local

CiclaValley shares his photos of Saturday’s San Fernando Street Festival.

You have an hour and a half today to ride, walk, scoot or skate the course of the Long Beach Gran Prix in what amounts to a mini-ciclovía. Although it would be nice if they gave people a little more time to come out and enjoy it.

State

The San Diego Union-Tribuneprofiles a former software engineer who quit his job, gave up his car and now works part-time for the San Diego County Bike Coalition.

National

Scottsdale AZ is providing a pair of free bike tours to view public art in the city.

Life is cheap in Kansas, where a drunk driver gets just three and a half years for falling asleep behind the wheel and running down a bike rider before fleeing the scene, leaving the victim on the brink of death for weeks.

An Ohio man is riding up the east coast from Key West to Maine in search of positive people and good vibes.

No bias here. If a Boston truck driver couldn’t even see a bike rider due to the truck’s massive blindspot, why the hell does it matter if the victim didn’t signal? And why the hell are trucks that blind their drivers to human beings in the roadway even allowed on city streets?

New Yorker and former Talking Head David Byrne says riding a bike used to be considered completely uncool, but now bikes are cool in different ways.

Bicycling looks at the New York bicyclist who developed an algorithm to measure how often bike lanes are blocked by motor vehicles. Spoiler alert: 40% of the time, round the clock.

Streetsblog complains about insane overcrowding on New York’s Brooklyn Bridge, saying the it could be relieved overnight by repurposing a traffic lane for bike use.

The New York Times says city planners are getting distracted by the bright, shiny objects that are self-driving cars, rather than focusing on proven safety measures.

A Baton Rouge LA advocacy group is close to getting eleven parishes — the Louisiana equivalent of counties — to sign off on a 300-mile US bike route from Texas to Mississippi.

International

Canadian bicyclists oppose a proposed law that would dramatically increase fines for law-breaking bike riders.

A Canadian writer says bicycling can transform your health.

A bike club in London — no, the one in Canada — says don’t waste money bringing bikeshare to the city when it could be spent on safer streets to encourage more people to ride.

An Aussie writer says he hopes California’s ebike regulations will migrate Down Under.

A Dutchman living in Australia explains why he doesn’t support the country’s mandatory bike helmet law, even though he credits his with saving his life.

Time says China’s bike fever has reached the saturation point. Although what they really mean is dockless bikeshare, not bicycling.

Finally…

You may have been illegally overcharged for your silicone gel wristband. Ebike racing is a sign of the apocalypse.

And now you can own your very own slightly used time trial bike for just $25,000.

Credit Peter Flax with finding that one.

Update: Teenage bike rider killed by alleged speeding driver in San Fernando Valley Easter Sunday

Tragic news, from what should have been a joyous day.

Word broke this morning that a 15-year old bike rider was killed in a collision in the San Fernando Valley on Easter Sunday.

A GoFundMe page to raise funds for funeral expenses reports that Reseda High School student Sebastian Montero was struck head-on by a speeding driver at the intersection of De Soto and Burbank.

No time of the crash, or any other information is available at this time.

There are two intersections for De Soto and Burbank, as the street jumps a block north before continuing; no word yet on exactly which one the crash occurred on. However, there appears to be bike lanes on either side of De Soto.

Hopefully we’ll have more information soon.

This is the 13th bicycling fatality I’m aware of in Southern California, and the sixth in Los Angeles County. It’s also the fifth in the City of Los Angeles.

A ghost bike will be installed at 9 pm tonight.

Update: According to a source with the LAPD, the crash took place at the south intersection, directly in front of Kaiser Medical Center, as Montero was crossing De Soto headed east, where the crosswalk would be if one was painted. 

The driver reportedly shifted to the right lane, and accelerated through the intersection as soon as the light changed, catching Montero before he could get across the street.

No information yet on who may be at fault or any possible charges. 

Update 2: The Los Angeles Daily News says the crash occurred around 11:40 am Sunday. He died about an hour later after being taken to a local hospital.

Police are investigating the timing of the traffic light, as well as the speed of the driver. 

Montero was riding with a friend, who was unharmed. 

Photos from GoFundMe page

Photo by Steve Spence

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Sebastian Montero and all his family and friends.

Thanks to Steve and Zachary Rynew for the heads-up.

Morning Links: LADOT’s new focus on “transportation happiness,” and LA BAC meets tomorrow in Hollywood

LADOT chief and NACTO president Seleta Reynolds explains how Los Angeles is adapting urban mobility for the digital age — including an emphasis on transportation happiness.

To achieve that, she says,

We are currently drafting a Mobility Bill of Rights to identify core principles like reliability, safety, comfort, equity, transparency, and community that should be the foundation of services we provide or allow to serve Los Angeles. Each of these principles has a set of key performance indicators that we will baseline with Angelenos in order to guide improvements to existing service, like taxis and transit, and help us to regulate new services as they come into the city.

Of course, if the city really wants to increase transportation happiness, they’d place a greater emphasis on bike riding and safer streets, since bike riders are the happiest commuters.

Today’s photo show a new bike box next to Hollywood High School.

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The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee will meet this Tuesday at the Hollywood City Hall.

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Local

CiclaValley notes a Baby on Board sticker doesn’t stop a driver from texting.

A Santa Clarita radio station reports on the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition’s introductory bike ride along local trails this Saturday.

Santa Monica is hosting a safe streets open house tomorrow night to consider a makeover of 17th Street.

 

State

Bike riders offered warning about the dangers of self-driving cars before Uber decamped for Arizona to avoid regulation restrictions in California — and before Elaine Herzberg was killed as she walked her bike across a Tempe street.

Australian BMX champ Sam Willoughby continues to make progress at his San Diego home, two years after a crash in competition left him paralyzed from the chest down.

A San Diego Op-Ed says the city has to prioritize bikes and transit if it’s going to have any hope of meeting its climate goals.

Palo Alto is already backpedalling on ambitious plans to install eleven roundabouts, even before the first one opens.

After a news story last week revealed San Leandro police could be breaking the law in their crackdown on teen bike riders, they respond by accusing bicycle flash mobs of disrupting traffic. Which does not justify illegal bike seizures or assaulting kids on bikes.

Bike rentals have begun for the year in Yosemite. Although someone should tell NBC Bay Area to hire a decent proof reader; pretty sure they meant rentable, not rentalable.

 

National

A 1,300-mile bike ride this month will connect all three 9/11 crash sites for the first time.

A Missoula MT letter writer says studies show businesses don’t need wide streets to succeed, and the city can make better use of excess capacity. Which should be mandatory reading for anyone who complains about LA lane reductions.

Bicycling brought $137 million in health and business benefits to Northwest Arkansas last year, after two counties build 163 miles of bike trails over the last ten years.

An Indiana reporter says you don’t have to be a bicyclist to not want to see another ghost bike.

A new US bike route route could be coming to southern Kentucky.

A Connecticut reporter learns the benefits of bikeshare firsthand.

Pedaling in Palm Beach in the 1930, on the first balloon tires, in a bike club founded by the Schwinn founder’s son-in-law.

Streetsblog says instead of the failed pedestrian bridge that collapsed and killed several people, why not a complete streets makeover of the entire roadway?

 

International

A proposed Quebec law would dramatically jack up fines for scofflaw bicyclists.

The Guardian reviews MAMIL, the documentary featuring LA’s Eastside Bike Club, and partly filmed at Stan’s Bike Shop in Azusa.

A local paper examines why Cambridge is the UK’s leading cycling city.

The family of a popular Welsh chef and triathlete who was killed in a crash while on a training ride last year are opening a school in Fiji in his honor.

A new British survey shows ebikes are a hit with riders over 55, while a Kiwi columnist suggests ebikes will be a passing fad like adult tricycles. Note to world: If anyone ever calls me a “silver cyclist,” I’ll go buy a cane and beat them mercilessly with it.

A Zimbabwean man has died in Belgium, over a decade after he was brought to the country to train as a cyclist as part of a TV show.

Pakistani women ride to protest sexual harassment and fight to reclaim their place in public spaces.

South Korean bike makers struggle as air pollution and a lack of infrastructure discourages people from getting on their bikes in the country.

Singapore learns that a heavy hand is no panacea when it comes to dealing with abandoned dockless bikeshare bikes.

Hong Kong puts the blame on reckless bike riders for last year’s nearly 2,000 crashes, rather than the people in the big, dangerous machines.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dutchman Niki Terpstra won this year’s Tour of Flanders in a solo breakaway; countrywoman Anna van der Breggen took the women’s title. A massive crash caused Team Sky’s captain to get DQ’d for riding off the course. SoCal’s Coryn Rivera discusses the emotions she went through after winning last year’s race

Don’t expect any resolution to the Chris Froome doping allegations anytime soon; the case is expected to continue until after this year’s Tour de France.

A Denver Post columnist questions the wisdom of underground bike races on public trails, but doesn’t seem to really mind. Although someone should tell him that LA’s Wolfpack Hustle Marathon Crash Race hasn’t been held for a few years now.

 

Finally…

It may be a bicycling paradise, but you still have to follow the rules. Your next bike seat might look funny, but feel better.

And nothing like skitching at highway speeds, sans helmet.

Not that one would help at those speeds.

Morning Links: Upcoming bike events, bike stolen from Fontana victim, and violently anti-bike cops in San Leandro

Let’s start with some upcoming events we haven’t mentioned yet.

A number of Los Angeles-area legislative districts are holding special elections on Tuesday; Bike the Vote LA has rated the candidates in each district.

Westside bike co-op Bikerowave is hosting a ride to the hapa.me exhibit in Little Tokyo on April 7th.

LACBC is hosting a short ride 5-mile ride to discover the bike paths of Santa Clarita on April 7th, in conjunction with Metro, the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition and the City of Santa Clarita!

Registration opens April 8th for Phil Gaimon’s Phil’s Cookie Fondo.

LACBC teams with Bike SGV to host their monthly Sunday Funday ride through the San Gabriel Valley on April 8th.

Culver City goes to the polls on April 10th; Bike the Vote LA offers their guide to the bike-friendly candidates.

Bike SGV is hosting a ride on the Eaton Wash on April 29th as part of their series to explore greenways in the San Gabriel Valley.

……..

We missed this report earlier this week, as a 65-year old woman was killed in a collision as she was walking her bike across a Fontana Street Tuesday morning.

And then some lowlife scum stole her bicycle before police could collect it as evidence.

Let’s hope it was just a mistake, and someone took the bike to hold it until it could be picked up.

………

This one really pisses me off.

Police in bike-unfriendly San Leandro are allegedly confiscating kids’ bicycles for traffic infractions, under the pretext that they might be stolen. And reportedly dooring teenage bike riders on purpose, and holding unarmed children at gunpoint.

To the best of my knowledge, there is nothing in the law that allows police to confiscate bicycles based on nothing more than a supposition. Which is no different than impounding a driver’s car simply because he looks suspicious, with nothing to back it up.

Meanwhile, intentionally dooring a bike rider not only violates the vehicle code, it’s assault with a deadly weapon and an illegal use of force.

And don’t even get me started on pulling a weapon on nonviolent children for the crime of simply riding a bicycle.

Let’s hope this story results in a fleet of lawyers descending on the town.

And whoever is responsible for these outrageous policies finding new work as an unarmed security guard at the local mall.

Thanks to Frank Lehnerz for the heads-up.

………

Long Beach Bike Ambassador Tony Cruz offers basic advice on how to ride a bike safely. Although there could have been a mention of road position beside merely riding outside the door zone.

………

Local

Los Angeles will make safety improvements to six major streets next year. Of the six, only Avalon Blvd in South LA will get protected bike lanes, while a gap will be closed in the bike lanes on Reseda Blvd.

LADOT wants your input to improve their websites; you’ll be entered in a drawing for a $50 Amazon gift card if you complete the 15-minute survey.

Bike SGV wants to profile people who ride their bikes in the San Gabriel Valley.

CiclaValley questions whether wind gusts are scarier than blowouts on a descent, after getting caught in one himself.

 

State

LimeBike’s San Diego general manager swears they haven’t deployed their lime green dockless bikeshare bikes in Ocean Beach yet, even if observers swear otherwise. Meanwhile, Coronado carts off the dockless bikes that have besmirched their fair city.

Point Loma residents reach an agreement to halt the repeated demolition of a DIY pump track by promising to keep their kids off it until the situation can be resolved.

Evidently, traffic safety denying is contagious, as Keep LA Moving’s anti-safety message has spread to Oakland.

Streetsblog talks with the interim director of Bike East Bay, as the Bay Area advocacy group prepares to launch a search for a new executive director.

 

National

Ebikes really are pulling people out of their cars; 28% of people surveyed purchased their ebikes to reduce their reliance on cars, while 76% of ebike trips would have otherwise been made by car.

Canadian musician Rich Aucion is on a 15-city tour of the US, riding from gig to gig by bike in what will eventually be a coast-to-coast ride to raise funds for a mental health organization.

A Utah mountain bike expert offers advice on trail etiquette.

A tech startup is working with Trek to reduce bicycle collisions using artificial intelligence.

Philadelphia’s bike-hating columnist inexplicably says flipping bike lanes from the right to the left side on two one way streets is equivalent to flipping the bird to local residents. And compares the city’s bike advocacy group to the NRA.

A New Orleans suburb installs a temporary, popup separated bike lane to test acceptance before making a commitment.

 

International

Streetsblog visits the bikeways and ciclovía of Lima, Peru.

A new paper from a Canadian university considers how news coverage of fatal collisions dehumanizes victims and absolves drivers.

Bicycling injuries increased 90% in England’s Richmondshire district following the country’s 2014 Tour de France start, due to an increase in ridership on the country roads made famous by the race.

This one bears repeating in case you missed it yesterday. An Italian study shows that making hi-viz mandatory for cyclists does nothing to improve safety.

A disabled polio survivor from Nepal visits Brunei, the 68th country he’s visited on his round-the-world bike tour. Yet another reminder that bikes offer increased mobility for people with disabilities.

Running over an Australian bicyclist was nothing more than a “bump in the road” for one truck driver.

 

Competitive Cycling

Women’s bike racing comes to Ontario this Sunday.

A local community paper looks forward to May’s Redlands Bicycle Classic.

A look at five great Malaysian cycling champs. And one really bad mustache.

The war on bikes continues, as a Columbian pro cyclist was attacked by a road raging driver while training in Italy after complaining about an dangerously close pass.

 

Finally…

When you’re ranked dead last, anything is an improvement. Your old bike tires could be haute couture.

And if you’re caught on video trying to steal a bike, come up with a better excuse than alleging that the owner asked you to bust the lock and bring it to him.

………

Thanks to Elizabeth T for her generous donation to the unofficial BikinginLA Dead Computer Replacement Fund, which has now reached an unofficial $300.

………

Best wishes to all for a very happy Easter weekend and Passover.

Let’s all mark this weekend by taking a moment to share a little kindness with someone in need. 

Morning Links: Pasadena’s Orange Grove complete street on hold, and chill out on dockless bikeshare already

So much for that.

Pasadena has responded to the vocal concerns of drivers and local residents by putting an indefinite hold on plans for a road diet on dangerous Orange Grove Blvd.

Even though that means ignoring the concerns of everyone who wants to live on a quieter, calmer street. Or doesn’t want to get run down by those same drivers.

Which marks yet another victory, albeit hopefully a temporary one, for the people behind the driver activist group Keep LA Moving, which organized the resistance to the bike lane.

As well as opposition to the recently shelved Temple Street road diet, and the failed road diets in Playa del Rey.

So far, only the Mar Vista Great Streets Project on Venice Blvd has survived their traffic safety denier onslaught.

Let’s hope Pasadena can do a better job of communicating the benefits of such projects than LADOT has up to this point. And that the Orange Grove project will come back more successfully at a later date.

Because right now, the people in the black hats and two-ton vehicles are winning.

And needless to say, Keep LA Moving’s allies at KFI radio cheering the decisions.

……..

A writer for San Diego’s City Beat suggests maybe it’s time to just chill out about dockless bikeshare.

As Matthew T. Hall, San Diego Union-Tribune editorial director, lamented on Twitter about the kits, “What kind of world are we leaving our children?”

Well, for one, apparently one where folks Spin’s age, edging toward 60 and above, think the appearance of bicycles in certain communities amounts to some apocalyptic hellscape of two-wheeling insurgents intent on demolishing mankind as we know it…

Never mind that not everyone can afford to buy a bike, nor the notion that perhaps a significant portion of the bikes that appear in Little Italy—or Mission Hills or Point Loma for that matter—might have actually brought someone to your popular neighborhood. Seems like short-sighted economics to drive that kind of business away…

Is it a perfect system? Hell no, but what is? But for this curmudgeon who this week turned 59, the bikes have offered—at a reasonable price—an opportunity to regain some semblance of a connection with my city and, by some miracle, my youth.

………

Horrifying video of a head-on collision as a driver turned directly into a bike rider waiting at a red light.

Needless to say, the driver claims she never saw him. Which should be seen as a confession rather than an excuse.

Note: This video shows exactly what it looks like to get hit head-on from the rider’s perspective. So consider that before deciding if you really want to hit play.

………

Bloomberg reports that Uber disconnected the collision avoidance system that comes standard in the Volvo SUV that stuck and killed Elaine Herzberg while she was crossing the street in Tempe Arizona, relying on their own failed self-driving technology instead.

Meanwhile, Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss says instead of counting on self-driving cars to save us, we should build cities to marginalize motor vehicles.

………

Local

Metro wants your input on how to spend their budget for next year. Hint: Shift all the highway funds to build bikeways and sidewalks, instead.

Normally, this would be your warning that upcoming lane closures for a Culver City construction site would mean the closure of the eastbound bike lanes on Venice Blvd. But I’m told they’ve already been closed for weeks.

Bicycling takes a little floatation therapy in Santa Monica.

 

State

Here’s your chance to design a new image for a proposed bicycle-themed California license plate. I’ve already submitted my design, showing an angry driver yelling “Get on the sidewalk!” Thanks to Phil Gaimon for the link

The New York Times looks at California’s SB-827, which would encourage denser housing to reduce reliance on motor vehicles to cut greenhouse gasses.

An Agoura Hills writer says the weather is nice, so it’s time to ride a bike.

Advocacy group Bike Bakersfield has developed their own stolen bike bulletin board.

These are the people we share the roads with. A San Francisco driver was arrested for plowing into a group of pedestrians, killing one and injuring four, before fleeing the scene. To make matters worse, the crash appear to have been intentional, coming after he shouted homophobic slurs and threatened the victims with an ax.

Former pro Peter Stetina will host a gran fondo during this year’s Interbike in Reno-Lake Tahoe.

 

National

Business Insider reviews bike helmets, and concludes the best option for most people is a $25 skid lid from Schwinn.

Peer-to-peer bikeshare firm Spinlister has announced they will be closing at the end of next month.

Bike Portland talks with a safe-driving advocate for a BMW magazine, who wants to put the focus for Vision Zero on the people behind the wheel.

For the next three weeks, you can explore Yellowstone National Park by bike, with no cars allowed.

Streetsblog makes the case for why a new bike trail-adjacent Chicago apartment building should only have 36 parking spaces for 124 units.

No bias here. No, Time Out, bicyclists in New York can’t legally run red lights. But they can start riding when pedestrians are legally allowed to go, which is a different matter entirely.

A New York cyclist makes the case for why bicyclists should support congestion pricing.

An American Idol contestant is teaming with the Tennessee Highway Patrol and a Nashville bike/walk advocacy group to discourage texting while driving, two years after he was run down by a distracted driver while riding his bike.

Philadelphia bike riders will honor a pastry chef killed in a bike crash last year with a pastry-filled bike scavenger hunt.

 

International

CNET says increasing regulation could, but probably won’t, stop the global spread of dockless bikeshare.

Cycling Weekly offers advice on how to get more aero. Which probably won’t help on your cruiser bike.

A Canadian mountie won’t face charges after investigators conclude there isn’t enough evidence to prove he ran over a fleeing bike theft suspect, even though he probably did.

It takes a major schmuck to sue a 10-year old girl for not following the vehicle code to the letter after he crashed into the rear tire of her bicycle while running. Fortunately, the judge dismissed the case.

A new study shows one in four drivers in Australia’s Queensland state pass bicyclists too closely. Which should sound familiar to most bike riders just about anywhere else.

 

 

Finally…

If you’re going to punch the driver who just crashed into your friend’s bike, at least wait until the cops leave.

And yes, you can go mountain biking in Los Angeles.

………

Thanks to Zachary R for his generous donation to the unofficial BikinginLA Dead Computer Replacement Fund.

 

Morning Links: Griffith Park Blvd gets new concrete, self-driving Uber fallout, and Twitter justifies its existence

Squeaky wheel, meet grease.

Just seven weeks ago, the Los Angeles Times reported that Patrick Pascal had received a $200,000 settlement from City of LA after he was injured when his bike hit a pothole on Griffith Park Blvd.

Now he reports the city has begun pouring new concrete to patch the crumbling stretch of concrete that took him down.

As usual, despite years of complaints, they only got around to it after it was too late. And after being embarrassed with a front page story.

But at least it should help prevent the next one.

Photos by Patrick Pascal.

……..

More fallout from the crash of a self-driving Uber car that killed an Arizona woman as she walked her bike across an overly wide street.

Arizona’s governor has suspended testing of self-driving cars in the state, after previously welcoming them with open arms when California installed safety restrictions on them.

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition has called on the state to pull the plug on driverless cars.

Uber has won’t renew their permit to operate driverless cars in California when it expires at the end of this month.

A Pittsburgh PA bike advocacy group is calling for greater regulation of driverless cars.

No surprise here, as former Uber employees said the crash that killed Elaine Herzberg was entirely foreseeable.

The Smithsonian considers the ethical quandaries self-driving cars will face every day.

And an American historian warns that requiring bike riders to wear beacons to avoid getting run down by autonomous autos could kill bicycling.

……..

Local

The LA Times looks at the Los Angeles River Greenway Trail bike path-adjacent Frogtown neighborhood.

Speaking of the LA River bike path, it’s about to be shut down once again, this time for construction of a long-planned bike and pedestrian bridge connecting Atwater Village and Griffith Park.

CiclaValley previews Saturday’s San Fernando Street Festival; think of it as a mini-CicLAvia with four streets closed to motor vehicle traffic.

Santa Monica is holding a couple of open houses to discuss safety improvements planned for 17th Street & Michigan Avenue.

 

State

Caltrans has released a biannual report listing their active transportation achievements over the past two years, including SoCal’s Go Human campaign in conjunction with the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG).

San Diego’s Little Italy Association is scooping up dockless bikeshare bikes, and depositing them outside the business district. Which is strange, because these are the same people who fought planned bike lanes, insisting that all their customers come by cars. Thanks to Frank Lehnerz for the heads-up.

Sacramento is removing nearly 200 hi-tech parking meters to make way for a parking-protected bike lane.

 

National

A new study shows ebikes are actually getting people out of their cars. Imagine what they could do if people actually had safe places to ride them.

Blocked bike lanes are becoming a problem in Denver. And everywhere else, for that matter.

How to bike the 75-miles of developed, multi-use trails in San Antonio TX.

A periodic reminder that cars are banned on Michigan’s Mackinac Island. And no, the world didn’t come to an end.

A pilot program will allow New York bicyclists in three boroughs to ride through red lights on the leading pedestrian intervals. Something that is currently illegal in California, but shouldn’t be.

A new documentary play tells the real-life story of a Virginia bike rider who was killed in a collision.

Mobile is about to become more mobile, as LimeBike is poised to bring dockless bikeshare to the Alabama city.

 

International

Cycling Tips rates the best fast, inexpensive chain lubes.

The mayor of Hamilton, Quebec learned about the need for safer streets the hard way, nearly getting hit by a car just seconds into a ride to promote the city’s bike infrastructure.

A proposed Toronto ordinance would prohibited assembling and disassembling bicycles in parks to ban bicycle chop shops.

The British Cycling Federation is due to go on trial, along with a race official and a course marshal, in the death of a mountain bike spectator who had gone to watch her boyfriend compete.

Bike Radar visits Belgium’s Roeselare cycling museum.

A group of “cheeky” urban activists are trying to reclaim car-centric Rotterdam for people.

A Kiwi sociologist says the bikelash over the new bikeways stems from “a sort of initial adjustment stress” from people who are unable to handle the change to the street.

Caught on video: An Australian bike rider demonstrates exactly what you shouldn’t do by weaving through a line of cars while riding against the red light in a crosswalk.

An Aussie research fellow says drivers cause the overwhelming majority of collisions with bike riders, and the law should reflect that.

The Sidney Morning Herald says it’s time to design the streets of Perth for bikes to help increase kids’ independence.

 

Competitive Cycling

Outside asks if the Tour de France will really ban reigning champ Chris Froome, who is under investigation for possible doping with an asthma drug.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can live like Lance for a mere $7.5 million. When the new local bike shop blows — no, literally.

And every now and then, Twitter justifies its existence.

 

 

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