Tag Archive for Palos Verdes

Weekend Links: Windshield bias in response to calls for bike safety; blood drive for Moorpark hit-and-run victim

Talk about not getting it.

Letter writers to the Daily Breeze respond with the usual windshield bias clichés to the paper’s recent story about the Tuesday’s die-in in Palos Verdes Estates.

Especially since all the riders are really asking for is to not get killed when they ride through the peninsula.

Like the first letter, from a San Pedro resident, who says governments on the peninsula shouldn’t give in to “the shrill carping of a narcissistic, entitled and noisy minority.”

Significantly less that 1 percent of the users of PVP roadways are bicyclists, yet they stridently demand that vehicular travelers virtually surrender the roads throughout PVP to them, allegedly for their own “safety.”

The vast majority of bicyclists riding PVP roadways are using them for recreation, while conversely, automobile drivers are commuting, attending to errands or business.

On weekends especially, the critical major PVP arteries are typically clogged by crowds of hundreds of cyclists, often arrogantly hogging lanes and congesting the roadways.

Never mind the obvious contradiction that “less than percent” of road users somehow manage to congest the roadways by the hundreds.

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Or that the riders are “arrogantly hogging lanes,” since that’s exactly where the DMV says they’re supposed to be.

And never mind the ridiculous assertion that everyone in a car has somewhere important to go, while everyone on bikes are just out to have fun and to make life miserable for all those poor, put-upon people in cars, who never, ever drive without some urgent need.

He ends by claiming there are “hundreds, if not thousands” of dedicated bike trails where people could ride rather than forcing riders to deal with odious congestion.

Maybe someone should tell him that congestion is caused by all those people in cars on the road, who wouldn’t be stuck in traffic if they weren’t busy being traffic. Or that all those thousands of miles of bike trails exist mostly in his overly vivid imagination.

Then there’s the following letter, which confirms that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing by citing CVC 21202, which every bike rider should know by heart.

Section 21202 of the California Vehicle Code says bicyclists must ride as close to the curb as practicable. That means cyclists riding side-by-side are breaking the law.

Which is absolutely true, if you ignore the rest of the statute. Especially subsection (3), which lists the many conditions under which the requirement to ride to the right doesn’t apply.

(3) When reasonably necessary to avoid conditions (including, but not limited to, fixed or moving objects, vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, animals, surface hazards, or substandard width lanes) that make it unsafe to continue along the right-hand curb or edge, subject to the provisions of Section 21656. For purposes of this section, a “substandard width lane” is a lane that is too narrow for a bicycle and a vehicle to travel safely side by side within the lane.

In other words, you don’t have to ride to the right when the right lane is too narrow to safely share with a motor vehicle, while allowing for at least a three foot passing distance, and without having to ride in the gutter and debris that collects on the side of the road.

Which is pretty much every street on the Palos Verdes peninsula, let alone the entire County of Los Angeles.

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A blood drive will be held over the next few weeks for Linda O’Connor, who remains in a coma in critical condition a week after she was struck by an alleged drugged hit-and-run driver while she was riding with a friend in Moorpark.

According to the Ventura County Star, 34-year old Jasmine Duran, the driver who ran her down and tried to hide her car after fleeing from the scene, will be arraigned next month on felony counts of hit-and-run and driving under the influence of drugs.

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‘Tis the season.

Burbank’s Bike Angels lined up 50 bike on the steps of city hall, just part of the 200 refurbished bikes they plan to give away through the Salvation Army and other charitable organizations.

A bighearted Rohnert Park businessman gave out 200 bicycles and helmets to kids from struggling families. And in at least one case, slipped a mother a wad of cash to finish her Christmas shopping after both of her sons received new bikes.

Members of a Tennessee Baptist church team with the owners of a local funeral home to donate 45 bicycles for students at a nearby elementary school.

A Pittsburgh volunteer spends hours every month searching for special needs children who could use an individually customized tricycle, giving away over 1,200 of the $1,800 bikes since 2012.

A Louisiana sporting goods store gave 30 bikes to students at a Catholic school.

Florida’s Jack the Bike Man plans to give away a whopping 1,200 bicycles to area kids in a single day.

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Taylor Phinney says cycling needs saving, and he that barely decided to stick with it for next year instead of retiring.

The man credited with inventing motor doping claims a January television investigation will reveal technical fraud at the highest levels of pro cycling.

Australia’s Mitch Docker has recovered from his horrific crash on the cobbles of Paris-Roubaix that left him with a broken eye socket, his tongue cut in half and six broken teeth.

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Local

Los Angeles officials unveiled the new and improved Van Nuys Blvd in Pacoima, where one northbound lane was removed to make room for two 0.8-mile bike lanes; only the northbound bike lane is parking protected, while the southbound riders get a small buffer to separate them from motor vehicle traffic.

The LACBC reports on Tuesday’s meeting to discuss completing the missing 12.5 miles of the LA River bike path through the San Fernando Valley.

Altadena’s newly relocated Open Road Bicycle Shop goes for the wow factor with a repurposed dry cleaner’s carousel filled with bikewear.

 

State

San Francisco’s experiment with raised bike lanes used four different approaches to protect riders; one with a vertical curb was the least effective in preventing injuries.

 

National

Wired offers a semi-legal guide to hacking safer streets, based on an actual guide to hacking safer streets.

This is the price of unsafe passing, as a truck driver in my hometown gets 90 days behind bars for a failed pass, while his impatience cost a bike rider his life.

The Chicago Tribune bizarrely responds to a DePaul University study suggesting an Idaho Stop Law could save lives with an editorial saying too many bike riders have died already, even though none of them were killed going through a stop sign or red light. Chicago Streetsblog smartly dissects the editorial.

 

International

Trek’s CEO says women who ride love riding just like the guys.

A conservative think tank accuses Calgary of retroactively tweaking bike lane numbers to make the goals easier to meet.

Britain’s transportation minister could face private prosecution for dooring a bicyclist; in the UK, private citizens can pay to have someone prosecuted if government prosecutors won’t do the job.

British cyclist Guy Martin had to give up his attempt to break the record for riding 11,000 miles around the British coast after pulling his Achilles tendon.

Over 400,000 Belgians receive a government allowance for riding to work, an increase of 30% since 2011. A program like that could dramatically cut the number of cars on the street here, at a fraction of the cost of other efforts.

Manga fans can look forward to the upcoming anime version of Minami Kamakura High School Girls Cycling Club.

A Beijing professor says China’s laws need to catch up with the rapidly rising use of ebikes.

 

Finally…

Why waste money on a skin suit when you can just buy a compression shirt and sick in your gut. Don’t be a jerk at your local bike shop.

And nothing like a very fast-paced tour of Tokyo.

Morning Links: DUI driver in Palos Verdes rampage gets three years; scofflaw cyclists no worse than drivers

The Torrance man who went on a drunken rampage through the Palos Verdes Peninsula won’t be driving anywhere anytime soon.

William Thomas Kelly was sentenced to three years in jail Monday after pleading no contest to felony counts of assault with a deadly weapon and driving under the influence causing injury.

Kelly had a BAC of .11 when he crashed into numerous cars, moving and otherwise, in September of 2013. Not to mention nearly hitting a pedestrian, and intentionally forcing a bicyclist off the road and into some bushes before repeatedly running over his bike.

According to the Daily Breeze, the rider, Doug Castile, was in the courtroom for the sentencing, hoping to see some sign of remorse from the man who tried to run him down. But didn’t get a single hit of it.

Maybe Kelly will finally show a little when he gets out in a few years

And hopefully, he’ll have to walk or bike anywhere he goes for the rest of his life.

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Interesting interview from Science Friday, as a professor from the University of Colorado Denver says despite perceptions, bike riders break the law at about the same rate as drivers do. But we do it for perceived safety reasons, rather than convenience or time savings, like drivers do.

As if to emphasize the point, a Napa resident complains about those darn scofflaw, semi-suicidal cyclists ruining her drive. And a New York editorial says cyclists have to get on board with the city’s safety plans.

Funny how motorists can see bike riders breaking the law, but never seem to notice the far more dangerous law-breaking drivers they share the road with.

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Fabian Cancellara crashed out of the Tour de France with two fractured vertebrae in his first day in the yellow jersey as part of Monday’s massive multi-rider pile-up. Remarkably, he managed to finish the stage, in what must have been incredible pain, before abandoning the race.

The Sacramento Bee offers a timeline of Monday’s third stage.

After being embarrassed when several riders went through a railroad crossing barricade in this year’s Paris-Roubaix race, French authorities have ordered the military to guard crossings during the tour to prevent bike racing rascals from trying it again.

You can support the first African team in the Tour de France by donating a bike for an African child as part of their #BicyclesChangeLives campaign. And yes, they do.

Meanwhile, mountain bikers were busy as well, as two Americans saw the podium in a World Cup race in Lenzerheide, Switzerland.

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Local

There’s no excuse for not learning how to ride a bike safely this summer, as Metro and the LACBC sponsor bike safety classes throughout LA County, including Long Beach and the San Gabriel Valley.

LADOT opens a new bike corral complete with repair stand outside Peddler’s Creamery near Fifth and Main in DTLA.

Bicycling looks at long-time bike advocate — and Calbike board VP — Charlie Gandy and his famed three-hour tour of Long Beach bike infrastructure.

 

State

KPCC looks at the state’s proposed hit-and-run alert legislation, which would notify the public to be on the lookout following particularly egregious hit-and-runs.

San Diego invests $74 million in fixing 300 miles of bad roads, which is especially good news for those on two wheels. Let’s hope they put in safe bike lanes while they’re at it.

A planned bike freeway promises to change the way Fresno residents live.

A Eureka cyclist crosses the 100,000 mile mark in his 40-year riding career. That’s a mark I left behind a long time ago.

 

National

A history professor from my hometown makes a full recovery from the gran mal seizure that caused her to crash during a bike race, suffering a concussion and fracturing her spine in five places; the benign golf ball-sized tumor that caused her seizure was successfully removed, as well.

Big hearted donors raise $5,000 for travel and funeral expenses for a Ukrainian woman killed while riding her bike home from work in Iowa.

Houston regulations will now require narrower traffic lanes, as well as taking all users into account, including bicyclists and pedestrians.

It takes a major schmuck to steal a custom-made bike from a Wisconsin girl with spinal bifida — let alone just before her 12th birthday.

A Minneapolis cyclist offers a harrowing first-hand account of what it’s like to see her best friend left lying in the street by a hit-and-run driver.

Beverly Hills is holding their annual bicycling classic crit. No, not the bike-unfriendly one on LA’s Westside. The one in Chicago.

Speaking of Chicago, they plan to turn a large patch of industrial wasteland into a world class 278-acre bike park.

A Cincinnati man is riding 2,000 miles to Yellowstone to remember his late wife who struggled with depression, while raising funds for mood disorder research.

A Michigan study shows apartments rent for 28% more in walkable areas, while home prices are 58% higher than non-walkable areas. Seems to hold true for bikeable areas, too.

A Connecticut driver is arrested on drug and DUI charges after nearly hitting a bicyclist; he admitted drinking four or five beers, and was found with three controlled substances prescribed to someone else, vodka, Bud Light and a straw that had been used to snort a prescription drug. And was then released on a whopping $100 bail.

 

International

A texting British driver gets 21 months for killing a hi-viz-wearing cyclist; he was busy flirting with a woman he met online instead of watching the road. Other drivers clearly saw the victim, but evidently, that would have required looking up from his phone.

A Brit woman is justifiably outraged that the drunk driver who killed her bike-riding husband while traveling at twice the speed limit will only serve six months behind bars.

As biking continues to grow in popularity, the UK government and local councils are urged to make riding safer; 55% of people surveyed said bicycling should be a higher government priority.

The Irish Independent says walking and biking aren’t just part of a green, hippy, sandal-wearing lifestyle.

Cape Town, South Africa’s new green bike lanes are declared a failure since motorists can’t resist parking in them.

An Aussie website looks at the bike tools every cyclist should own. Although most bike riders can get away with just a fraction of those, and a good mechanic.

 

Finally…

Don’t be too impressed with your bike riding skills; turns out even a Raccoon can do it. GoPro unveils a new lighter, more aero cam, as long as you’re willing to fork out nearly $400 bucks.

And what do you tip your waiter when he returns your stolen bike along with your latte?

 

Morning Links: Victim and suspect identified in Oceanside hit-and-run, charges filed in PV road rampage

Note: I have to take my laptop into Apple on Monday for a repair it shouldn’t need after just 16 months, but apparently does. So this may be my last update for a few days until I can get it back; I’ll be out of email contact for the most part, as well.

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Philip White ghost bike; photo courtesy of Ghost Bike Foundation.

Philip White ghost bike; photo courtesy of Ghost Bike Foundation.

Police finally identified the victim in last week’s Oceanside hit-and-run, a day after he was named here by family members.

According to San Diego 6, 28-year old Oceanside resident Philip White was found lying dead in the roadway on the morning of September 21st; evidence at the scene suggested he had been hit by a green Kia Soul.

Police quickly found the vehicle, and have identified the owner as 22-year old Christopher Noah of San Diego. Yet a full week later, Noah has not been arrested and no charges have been filed.

The delay may be due to difficulty proving Noah was behind the wheel at the time of the collision.

Let’s hope that when an arrest is finally made, the charges will reflect the seriousness of the crime. Had the driver stopped and rendered aid, as the law requires, it’s possible that White’s life may have been saved; instead, the person who ran him down made a conscious decision to let his victim die in the street rather than face the consequences of his actions.

If that doesn’t warrant a murder charge, I don’t know what does.

Meanwhile, a fund has been established to help the family pay for funeral and other related expenses arising from White’s unexpected death. They’re only asking for $5000; any money beyond what’s needed will be donated to charity organizations such as MADD and the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition.

Then there’s this comment contained in an email from a member of White’s family, which is definitely worth sharing.

The cycling community has shown an overwhelming amount of support and sorrow for someone they probably did not know and it has given real comfort to our family.

Let’s never forget that what we do and say can touch the people who need it most, when they need it most.

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A drunk driver who went on a violent road raging rampage through Palos Verdes last year has finally been charged in the case.

According to the Daily Breeze, 66-year old William Thomas Kelly faces charges of “assault with a deadly weapon using a vehicle, making terrorist threats, driving under the influence, vandalism and hit-and-run.”

Let’s hope it hurt like hell when the DA threw the book at him.

Kelly started by crashing his Audi into a woman’s car. Then backing up and hitting her again.

He went on to deliberately assault a cyclist, attempt to run over a pedestrian, sideswipe a car, hit another one, ram several cars in a parking lot, and rear end a car before sideswiping another one, then intentionally backing into it.

But wait, he wasn’t done.

Kelly drove on to intentionally sideswipe and back into yet another car before ramming into three locked fences and, finally, passing out behind the wheel of his disabled car.

Other than that, though, he was a perfect driver.

The Daily Breeze quotes the bike rider in describing what happened after he yelled at Kelly for clipping him in a too-close pass and running him off the road.

The bicyclist, Doug Castile, said that afternoon that the driver backed up behind him and pushed him and his bike into the bushes at the side of the road.

“At that point, my feet are clipped in the pedals on my bike,” he said. “I unclipped my feet and jumped off the bike into the plants and he’s running over my bicycle back and forth.”

Castile said the driver then noticed him reach into his pocket to get his phone.

“He says, ‘What are you reaching for, a gun?’ It just was so odd to hear that statement. I took my hand out of my pocket. I thought this guy is capable of anything,” Castile said.

Thanks to Jim Lyle for the heads-up.

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No justice for fallen Newport Beach cyclist Debra Deem, as the DA drops all charges against the 85-year old driver who killed her, following a mistrial earlier this month.

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Local

LA’s Bureau of Street Services recommends removing roadside memorials — including ghost bikes — from city property after just 30 days; thanks to Danny Gamboa for the link.

Eastsiders worry that Sunday’s CicLAvia will bring hipsters and gentrification to Boyle Heights.

Two South LA men sharing a single bike are injured when a driver runs a red light; the victims were hospitalized with broken limbs, internal injuries and head trauma. Naturally, the driver was not arrested at the scene.

Nice. Seven years ago, a 34-year old former Army sergeant was confined to a wheelchair, riddled with pain and addicted to opiates; on Sunday, he planned to ride 90 miles in the Beverly Hills Gran Fondo, thanks to a new medical device.

Actor and 30 Seconds to Mars lead singer Jared Leto rides a bike in Studio City.

BikeSGV picks up the Bike the Vote mantle, with a questionnaire completed by Alhambra city council candidate Eric Sunada.

 

State

This Sunday a section of Santa Ana will go car-free, the same day CicLAvia extends into Boyle Heights for the first time.

An OC trail rider gets a helicopter rescue after he’s injured while riding on Whiting Ranch.

A San Diego collision between a police car, a bicyclist and another vehicle sends five people to the hospital; a later report says the police car spun onto the sidewalk and hit eight Brazilian tourists on rented bikes.

The next time someone says bike riders have to obey the law too, ask them who the “too” refers to. Because most drivers don’t, either.

A San Francisco writer says the new three-foot law means drivers will have to break the law to do the right thing, and that protected bike lanes are the way to go. Unfortunately, Governor Brown vetoed an earlier version of the three-foot passing law that would have allowed drivers to briefly cross the center line to pass a cyclist safely.

 

National

New Mexico is investing $1 million in improving rail crossings to protect bicyclists and pedestrians.

Police are searching for a road raging Nyack NY cyclist who went off on a car passenger for no apparent reason. Of course, drivers are entirely innocent in such cases and couldn’t possibly have done anything to set a rider off, right?

Good advice on what to do if you’re hit by a car in New York; the same holds true here in LA or anywhere else.

After a New York state senator proudly yells at cyclists to “Find an f-ing bike lane and get in it,” a Brooklyn cyclist invites her to get on a bike and see what it’s like for the victims of her abuse.

 

International

Kind hearted Winnipeg residents return a customized bike stolen from a nine-year old with cerebral palsy after they unknowingly buy it for parts.

A UK writer says cyclists make easy targets for anti-bike politicians, but it’s only a minority that don’t play by the rules.

An Iranian cyclist gets a free pass out of military service after his surprise win in the Asian Games.

An Australian state invests $300,000 in an education campaign to improve bike safety; then again, spending the same amount on improving infrastructure could probably do more good.

 

Finally…

Well, duh. An Abu Dhabi writer says cycling outside, instead of in a gym, relieves boredom; only people who cycle in a gym think it even begins to approach the real thing. Proof that not all jerks are behind the wheel: A Brit bike rider punches a 70-year old man who reprimanded him for weaving through a crowd.

And now you can follow your every move with your own personal drone. Even if using private drones is currently illegal.

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Thanks to George Wolfberg and Glen Schmuetz for their generous contributions to support this site.

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