Tag Archive for Topanga Canyon

Morning Links: 85th Percentile Law is killing bike riders and pedestrians, and the war on bikes goes on

The deadly 85th Percentile Rule has gone mainstream.

Credit the LA Times’ Laura Nelson for interrupting the paper’s move to El Segundo with a front page story explaining how and why speeds are set at the speed of the 15th fastest driver on the street — the 85th percentile of drivers.

To update driver speeds, city engineers visit a street in the late morning or early afternoon, park along a stretch of road without stop signs or traffic lights, and use an electronic device to measure the speeds of 100 drivers.

They rank the speeds from fastest to slowest and identify the 85th percentile — that is, the speed just below the 15th-fastest driver. City engineers use that “critical speed” as a basis for establishing a new speed limit, typically rounded to the nearest 5 mph.

Which means drivers can set the speeds with their right foots. Which is kind of like putting bank robbers in charge of security at Wells Fargo.

Although that might be an improvement over their recent scandals, but still.

Failing to conduct those surveys, or raise speeds as a result, means police officers are prohibited from using speed guns or other electronic devices to stop speeders.

And drivers can go as fast as traffic and LA’s over-engineered streets will allow.

The restrictions on police using electronic devices has coincided with a 77% drop in the number of speeding tickets written annually by the Los Angeles Police Department, from 99,333 in 2010 to 22,783 last year.

Traffic officers have been particularly hamstrung in the San Fernando Valley, where the majority of the city’s speeding tickets are written and more than 130 miles of streets carry speed enforcement restrictions, according to a Times analysis of city data.

“People are driving like maniacs on city streets,” said Dennis Zine, a former city councilman in the Valley who worked as a traffic officer. “It’s costing people their lives.”

Particularly the lives of bike riders and pedestrians.

There have been numerous failed attempts to reform the 85th Percentile Law, each dying in the legislature over fears that speeding drivers will have to slow down or get the tickets they deserve.

Which is kind of the point.

Maybe this story will finally motivate homeowners to join with bicycle and pedestrian advocate, to demand that state legislators change the law that imposes highway speeds on city streets.

And leaves far too many bodies in its wake.

Thanks to David Drexler for the heads-up.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

An Australian bike rider suffered a broken collarbone and fractured ribs when he was clotheslined by a garden hose stretched across a roadway.

A rider in South Africa blacked out — and was nearly decapitated — when he struck a fencing wire that had been strung across a bike trail at neck height; fortunately, the wire snapped, preventing serious injury.

Someone vandalized a pair of cyclist resting posts in Vernon, British Columbia, which position riders in the right spot to be recognized by traffic signals, and allow the rider to rest at the light without unclipping. Note: I originally wrote this as Vernon, California; thanks to Joe Linton for the correction.

And police in New York are continuing their decidedly non-bike friendly ways by ticketing bicyclists riding in a new privately developed park where planners somehow left out bike lanes on the wide, one way street.

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If you were planning to ride Topanga Canyon next weekend, you might want to start making other plans.

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Local

The newly affordable Metro Bike bikeshare is expanding onto the Westside towards the end of this year, and wants your input on where to put docking stations.

Los Angeles is installing intelligent traffic signal controllers throughout the city, in part to allow the installation of bike traffic signals.

Bike Talk talks with bike shop owner and advocate Carlos Morales.

The Hollywood Reporter says a backlash is brewing against e-scooters, which are being blamed for crashes and near-crashes with bicyclists and pedestrians.

A Michigan man who attempted to ride all of Route 66 in honor of his late son arrived in Santa Monica last week, raising $10,000 for pediatric cancer research.

 

State

Bike SD expresses concern that a bikeway is being held hostage by a neighborhood planning group.

A writer takes an epic carfree ride down Highway 1 where it was closed down by a Big Sur mud slide; the highway was just reopened to cars last week.

Now that’s more like it. A road in the Presidio will be closed to cars to improve safety for San Francisco cyclists and pedestrians.

A California appeals court has denied a plea from Marin cyclist Jeff Smock to overturn his road rage conviction for beating a truck driver senseless after the driver allegedly clipped him with the truck’s side mirror. He appealed despite receiving a slap on the wrist for the conviction.

Marin County vows to appeal a judge’s ruling blocking mountain bikes from using a single track trail that had recently been widened to make room for people on bikes, as well as on foot and horseback.

 

National

Bike Snob says kissing bike lanes is the new equivalent of politicians kissing babies, as support grows for bicycling. Except in Los Angeles, where elected leaders quake in fear of angry four-wheeled voters.

Bicycling rates the year’s fastest, funnest and most exciting ebikes. And more clickbait from the magazine, as they list their picks for the 30 greatest bike moments in pop culture.

Bicycle Times offers tips on how to smuggle documents like cycling legend Gino Bartali.

Mobility Lab shares a nice piece from 

Travel site Lonely Planet says you don’t have to drive to get your kicks on Route 66 anymore.

A self-described Spandex Mafia shows up in defense of an Oregon protected bike lane, after a city councilmember uses the term to disparage people on bikes.

Las Vegas bike riders get their own carfree open streets event when they’re allowed on a 25-mile segment of new freeway before its opened to cars next month.

Salt Lake City bicyclists ride to remember a 23-year old man who was killed in a collision with a train on a late night group ride; the crossing gates reportedly went up after train passed in one direction, then quickly came back down when a second train approached from the other, catching his bike on the tracks.

Horrible news from Houston, where a renowned cardiologist was shot and killed as he was riding his bicycle by a bicyclist who passed him, then turned around and fired; he had treated former President George H.W. Bush for a heart condition several years ago. No word on a suspect or what may have prompted the shooting. Thanks to Ed Ryder for the link.

Dallas bike riders say more has to be done to protect bicyclists, following the hit-and-run death of a rider who reportedly did everything right.

A new book describes the history of bicycling in the Windy City.

The World Naked Bike Ride strips down and rolls through St. Louis. But how can you tell when a bike-riding Wookie is naked?

St. Louis is renovating a velodrome popularly known as Mr. Bumpy Face because of the rough track.

The Indiana Business Journal gets it right, as an urban designer and university professor says the streets belong to all of us, even e-scooter users.

A South Carolina doctor decries the lack of support for healthy activities in the area after drivers succeeded in demanding the removal of a new lane reduction and bike lanes before the project was even finished.

 

International

Bike Radar offers advice on how to climb hills faster.

If you’re over 50, running or bicycling to work can cut your risk of a heart attack as much as a third.

Road.cc lists the UK’s best smartphone apps for bicycling, some of which should be available in the US.

A new 85-mile Calgary bike path connects 55 communities with over 400,000 people. And links to a 621-mile bike path network, the longest bike path network in the world.

Tragic news from Calgary, where a 75-year old man was killed in a collision with a bike rider as he was walking in a marked crosswalk; the rider allegedly ran the red light, but remained on the scene after the crash.

The local newspaper says someone is going to get killed on a bikeway bypass around a temporarily closed footbridge in Ottawa, Canada; a safer plan was nixed when people signed a petition preferring parking over preventing injuries to people on bikes.

The Department of DIY has struck once again, as Ottawa bicyclists build their own pop-up protected bike lanes using orange and black highway cones.

Louis Garneau — yes, that Louis Garneau — was seriously injured when he touched wheels with another rider on a Montreal group ride; the founder of the popular bikewear line suffered a concussion and punctured lung, but credited his helmet with saving his life.

No bias here. A Toronto newspaper portrays a conflict between people on bikes and residents of a hill country community as cyclists versus blue collar locals. Never mind that some of the riders live in the community, and many bike riders are decidedly blue collar.

The former bike-riding parking cop who gained fame on Twitter for ticketing bike lane blockers is now running for the Toronto city council.

A British man who was left paralyzed when he was struck by a distracted driver while riding his bike is demanding that phone makers automatically lock devices when a car is in motion.

Teenagers under 18 can now legally ride on sidewalks in Australia’s New South Wales state.

 

Competitive Cycling

Rouler looks at the classic Tour de France illustrations of Roger Blachon.

American cyclist Lawson Craddock explains how he’s surviving the Tour de France with a broken shoulder blade, completing all 15 stages so far after falling in the first stage. His suffering has raised nearly $130,000 for a Houston velodrome.

Dan Martin says when you’re bored, attack. On the other hand, punching another rider is apparently frowned on, as Team Sky’s Gianni Moscon learned the hard way.

To the surprise of absolutely no one, Tour de France fans continue to get on Chris Froome, even though he was officially cleared of doping charges recently. However, the fans are reportedly getting out of control.

An Ontario writer recounts Canada’s contribution to the Tour de France.

Twenty-three-year old Dutch cyclist Mathieu van der Poel has become the first rider to win national championships in cyclocross, road cycling and cross-country mountain biking.

A Spanish Continental rider offers the latest proof that the era of doping is not over.

 

Finally…

Your ebike could be rolling on automotive hand-me-downs. Spit your mouthwash out before riding into Peridot.

And you won’t want to miss the world’s cutest bike race, even though one of the competitors evidently did.

Morning Links: Upcoming bike events, possible Topanga Canyon closure, and bike boulevards coming to East LA

Let’s start by catching up with a few bike events coming in the next few weeks.

The LACBC will be hosting a ride along the lower LA River in Paramount this Saturday. That will be followed the next day by the monthly Sunday Funday ride in Elysian Park.

Walk Bike Burbank is holding their Burbank Bike Festival this Sunday.

Warm up for next week’s CicLAvia when Santa Monica’s COAST Open Streets Festival returns for a second year this Sunday.

This Wednesday is National Walk/Bike to School Day.

SoCal cyclocross season starts next weekend in Irvine.

CicLAvia returns to the Heart of LA on October 8th.

With the Olympics coming back to LA, this is a great time to meet legendary ’84 LA Olympic cyclist Nelson “The Cheetah” Vails at Stan’s Bike Shop on October 14th.

Long Beach is bringing back an expanded edition of their popular Beach Streets ciclovía on October 28th.

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If your weekend plans included riding Topanga Canyon, you might want to consider another route.

The road will be closed overnight on Saturday and Sunday from PCH to Grand View Drive; the article is unclear whether it will be closed entirely to bikes and pedestrians, or just until 5 am.

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Local

In a remarkably one-sided report, the Los Feliz Ledger says opponents of the successful Rowena road diet are awaiting the results of a safety study in hopes of reversing the lane reductions, and are feeling empowered by the reversal of the Vista del Mar road diet.

Metro will be installing a pilot bikeshare kiosk in Echo Park in time for next week’s CicLAvia in an effort to gauge demand for bikeshare in the area.

The anti-road diet mania in Los Angeles apparently hasn’t cowed county officials, who are moving forward with plans for at least one on the Eastside, as well as several other bike safety projects, including a pair of bike boulevards.

A cyclist helped come to the rescue when a car went off the road on Glendora Mountain Road yesterday.

The LA Times says greater density is the solution to California’s environmental and affordable housing crises, not sprawl-inducing developments like Newhall Ranch, however environmentally friendly they may strive to be.

 

State

A 21-year old plan to improve downtown Del Mar is finally moving forward, including widened sidewalks and bike lanes on Camino del Mar.

San Francisco police are looking for a bike-born dog-napper who threatened the dog’s owner with a golf club.

San Francisco Streetsblog asks whatever happened to the word “allegedly,” as the press is quick to blame the person on two wheels in any crash. I’d like to know the answer to that one myself.

Sports Illustrated takes in a San Francisco hill climb competition with inclines up to 21%. Which would elicit yawns from anyone who’s competed in LA’s own Feel My Legs I’m A Racer seven hill climb. (Correction: It’s a ten hill climb; thanks to CiclaValley for the tip.)

Thirteen bicyclists are riding from Reno NV to San Francisco to honor EMS workers who have died recently.

Horrifying story from Stockton, where three boys forced an eight-year old kid into a house and beat him severely, before stealing his bicycle and $16 — then posted the video on Instagram.

Evidently, San Jose hasn’t gotten the memo that road diets are evil, either.

Great article from Sacramento, where Sactown Magazine makes a call for tactical urbanism, from filling potholes with daisies to DIY protected bike lanes.

 

National

The new GoPro promises to unshake your bike cam videos.

A Navajo Nations cop has been charged with murder for crashing into a bicyclist after drinking all night while attending a conference in Arizona; his blood alcohol level was nearly three times the legal alcohol limit.

A long-time Iowa radio DJ and a member of the state’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was killed when he allegedly turned his bike into the path of an oncoming car.

Life is cheap in New York, where a negligent driver, whose boat detached from the car pulling it and killed a 21-year old woman riding her bike, will serve just 60 days behind bars.

A new interactive New York map will tell you when bikeshare is your fastest travel option. And it usually is.

Philadelphia adopts a Vision Zero plan, vowing to end traffic deaths by 2030.

 

International

If you own a Brompton made in the last four years, take it back to the dealer; the company is recalling all models made between 2014 and 2017 due to a problem with the bottom bracket.

A new London play was inspired by a ghost bike installed for the victim of a 2009 bicycling crash.

The British press is in an uproar over brakeless fixies, even though a fixie is a brake in the hands of a skilled rider. The problem comes when inexperienced cyclists try to ride brakeless, without the skills or leg strength to stop their bikes.

A British woman complains that her husband loves his bike more than her.

The Italian supreme court has officially ruled that cycling legend Marco Pantani wasn’t murdered.

 

Finally…

Before you ride 7,500 miles to pedal your bike around a famed racetrack, make sure they allow bicycles. Go ahead and pedal your bike while drunk, but don’t paddle your canoe.

And maybe the problem is too many American drivers are selfish assholes.

 

Morning Links: Caltrans may remove dangerous Topanga Cyn reflectors; Vision Zero becomes official LA policy

Maybe there really is a new attitude at Caltrans.

A few years ago, if the state transportation agency installed something that increased the risk for cyclists on any given roadway, chances are, it would fall on deaf ears no matter how much we complained.

But this time may be different.

Anthony emailed on Monday to warn about newly installed reflectors on one of the area’s most popular riding routes.

At some point in the last couple of weeks, Caltrans installed raised reflectors on the both shoulder lines of Topanga Canyon Boulevard (SR-27) between the PCH and the town of Topanga. This was apparently part of a “safety enhancement project” for the steep, twisty section of road between the town and the coast—but, of course, the only safety being enhanced seems to be that of drivers!

The raised reflectors protrude about an inch above the road surface, and create quite a jolt if you ride over them—especially if you ride over them unexpectedly. This could cause crashes for unsuspecting cyclists.

More pressing: Upon riding the section of road today in both directions, because of the dense placement of the reflectors (every 4-5 feet) I found myself unable to easily move back and forth between the traffic lane and the shoulder—something that I’d come to take for granted on TCB, as it allows for overtaking car traffic to pass safely. I ended up occupying the traffic lane exclusively, which lead to a number of angry motorists passing me unsafely.

I’m guessing that Caltrans didn’t even think about the fact that TCB is heavily used by cyclists. It’d be great to figure out a way to get them to replace the raised reflectors or remove them!

And this on a road where drivers already complain about cyclists taking the lane to anyone who’ll listen.

But almost before I could respond, he forwarded an email exchange with a representative from Caltrans,* who gave the following response when asked if the reflectors could be removed or replaced with something a little safer.

According to our operations and construction engineers, the raised pavement markers will likely be removed very soon.

After further questioning, the Caltrans rep explained a little more.

The installation wasn’t made by mistake.  Occasionally, Caltrans engineering standards have flexibility for users, in this case cyclists.

However, when I commented about the reflectors on Twitter yesterday, Caltrans District 7 was quick to respond that they may be removed, but nothing had been promised.

So let’s keep our fingers crossed that this one goes away soon.

*It’s the policy of this site not to name people included in email threads without their express permission, which was not requested in this case.

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As expected, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti signed a new Vision Zero directive to reduce traffic deaths in the city by 20% in just two years, and eliminate traffic fatalities entirely by 2025.

What wasn’t expected is that it appears to have real teeth, requiring city agencies to work across departmental lines to study and fix streets where fatalities and injury collisions occur — something we’ve been calling for here since this site was founded over seven years ago.

The city’s Vision Zero website is already online.

And you can now add LA to the yes category.

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Last week we featured an email from a rider who had passed out from heatstroke after running out of water on the San Gabriel River trail at the height of the recent heat wave.

Now Sam Kurutz forwards a photo of a sign thanking the person who came to her rescue.

Thanks to Sam Kurutz for the photo

Thanks to Sam Kurutz for the photo

Let that be a reminder to always carry enough water when you ride, especially with the temperatures predicted for the end of this week. And always check the forecast before you set out to avoid any surprises.

Thanks to Sam Kurutz for the photo.

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Peter Sagan gets his first grand tour stage win of the year by capturing the third stage of the Vuelta in a mass sprint.

USA Pro Challenge champ Kristin Armstrong is letting the world know women’s cycling is the next big thing, although this could possibly be the last year for the race. Personally, I’d like to see the Pro Challenge merge with the Amgen Tour of California to create a truly epic two week race.

VeloNews looks at the best American rider not on a WorldTour team.

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Local

Bikeshare may be coming to LA sooner than we thought, as WeHo’s planned network could have hubs at The Grove and Hollywood and Highland. Speaking of Vision Zero, better get bike lanes on Hollywood Blvd fast, before tourists try to navigate that dangerous street on two wheels.

Meanwhile, Global Green USA looks at the newly installed Santa Monica Breeze bikeshare system. Appropriate source, given the hue of the bikes.

Downtown News says LADOT’s DASH buses will soon be getting bike racks.

 

State

Even on a San Diego freeway, they find a way to blame a bike for a crash.

Police say a 72-year old Fresno driver was drunk when he fled the scene after allegedly killing a bike rider.

West Berkley residents tip police to the location of a bike thief who had fled earlier after police had tried to make an arrest.

Anonymous artists install cute little swing sets on San Francisco bike racks, but promise you can still lock your bike to them.

Support is growing in San Francisco for a Bike Yield Law, aka an Idaho Stop Law, which would allow people on bikes to treat stop signs as yields, although riders would still be required to observe the right-of-way.

Some schmuck has stolen the recumbent bike an elderly Modesto couple used for shopping and doctor visits; the bike was their only form of transportation.

The Marin paper says a new local bike park is a promise kept by county commissioners. And evidently, a place to get a few bumps and bruises.

 

National

The Feds say it’s time for state and local DOT’s to stop using them as an excuse for crappy infrastructure.

Bike Radar’s Angry Asian says the vocal warnings that are common courtesy among cyclists aren’t always understood or appreciated by non-riders, so use a bike bell. My take is just the opposite: A bell can only tell you a bike is present, or that an angel just got its wings. But a human voice can tell other path users where you are, where you’re going, suggest what they should do — politely or otherwise — and say please and thank you. Let’s see a damn bell do that.

A Seattle cyclist used his bike to block traffic and stood over an injured bike rider to protect her after she was hit by a car.

A 20-year old Colorado driver faces a long list of charges after killing a cyclist when he passed two vehicles on the wrong side of a double yellow line, around a blind curve, and with an open container of alcohol in his car. There’s a gofundme site to raise money for the victim’s family.

A writer in my hometown says we need to include all types of bike riders in the cycling community, even moms herding kids on bikes.

Un-effing-believable. An Austin DUI driver walks free after ending the productive life of a former firefighter. The driver was on Ambien when he plowed into the victim’s bike as he rode on the shoulder, but that information was kept from the jury due to an improper police search. Thanks to Steve Katz for the heads-up.

The fastest bike mechanic in Texas won’t be riding anytime soon after he’s the victim of a hit-and-run.

An Ohio hit-and-run driver appeared highly intoxicated when he was arrested after running down a cyclist from behind; he lied twice about who was behind wheel, and claimed he thought the car hit a deer. And to top it off, he was driving on a suspended license.

The Motor City will soon become the latest bikeshare city.

Un-effing-believable too. Vermont police investigators never examined the car a DUI driver — who just happens to be married to a cop — was operating when she killed a bike-riding dentist; they missed parts of his bike shoes still embedded inside the hood.

New York’s mayor wants bikeshare on Staten Island, stat. Meanwhile, the days for former Mayor Bloomberg and ex-DOT Director Janet Sadik-Khan are clearly over, as the city’s DOT is now leaving gaps in bike networks rather than confront local community boards.

That’s more like it. A distracted Maryland driver got five years for killing a bike-riding father while she was texting.

 

International

Some vehicular cyclists are complaining about Calgary’s new system of cycle tracks. Proving there are all sorts of cyclists, and one solution seldom works for everyone.

People constantly say you can’t ride to work in a suit — even fashion magazines that should know better. But the family of a Northern Irish bike advocate is going to ride around the county wearing suits in honor of their father, who always wore one when he rode to work.

The anti-bike Roads Minister in Australia’s New South Wales has set out to dismantle Sydney’s system of protected bike lanes, over the objections of the mayor.

Bangladesh authorities file charges against 10 men who tortured and murdered a 13-year old boy for allegedly stealing a bike — which his family denies — then posted the video online.

 

Finally…

Now that’s what I call a fat tire e-bike. When you’re riding with an illegal drug 40 times more potent than heroin, don’t run a stop sign. Or get hit by a car.

And caught on video: The long predicted apocalypse has begun with a uniquely Down Under twist, as an Aussie bicyclist rides through a field of zombie kangaroos.

 

The winners of our Mojo Bar giveaway, updates on recent bike crashes, and UPS blocks the bike lane

Let’s catch up on what turned out to be a far too busy week.

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First up are the winners of last weekend’s contest to give away some CLIF Mojo bars by revealing your own favorite means of performance enhancement for when you ride.

The winners were chosen in a totally biased and arbitrary manner by yours truly, based strictly on how much I liked the response.

And from my perspective, it looks like Brian was clear winner.

I ride with http://www.ride2recovery.com My enhancer is seeing a fellow Wounded Soldier Amputee passing me, or just not giving up!!

Seriously, how could I not reward a Wounded Warrior who just flat refuses to quit? Let alone one who uses his fellow riders for inspiration.

But we also had several runners-up who gave great responses as well.

Like Joe B, who struck a similar note.

I’ve found that the best way to enhance my performance is to have my slightly-faster buddy riding about fifteen or twenty feet in front of me.

I’ve got to admit, few things motivate me more than trying to catch and pass that rider just up the road.

Then there’s Lois Rubin, who deserves to win if she can ride a mountain bike without blowing chunks after eating this. Or maybe she didn’t mean at the same time.

For mountain biking – Pickles! and peanut butter, bananas and honey in a small whole wheat pita. For the road – hammer gel and mojo bars. Really.

Opus the Poet struck a similar note.

Peanut butter and honey sandwiches on whole wheat. I can run for miles on them. I did a century on a 24 oz. loaf and small jars of honey and peanut butter. And a few Gatorades.

Anyone who can go a hundred miles on a loaf of whole wheat bread has my respect.

Several people noted the value of a little — or a lot — of caffeine. But Mike Caputo threw in some music and a little lubrication.

My favorite performance enhancers (in no particular order) are a Starbucks Tall White Chocolate Mocha, a little ‘Beautiful Day’ by U2 (still works) and a quick squirt of bike lube on the chain (I know this is supposed to be done after but it feels so good)…of course the stretchy paints don’t hurt.

Finishing just out of the money, since CLIF’s agency limited me to five winners, was this response from Ben Calderwood.

Sherpa blood. No, I may have dreamed that. Plain ol’ Clif bars and gels, typically. The Mojo bars are too good; I tend to eat my stash long before I get on the bike.

I can think of more than a few riders who wouldn’t hesitate to ingest or inject Sherpa blood if they thought it would shave a few seconds off their time, or maybe win them a Tour de France title. But let’s think of Ben as first runner-up, and not just because he put in a plug for the product.

If for some reason we can’t ship a set of Mojo bars to one of the winners — like if someone doesn’t respond with a valid address — maybe we can slip him into the mix. At least now he knows how Taylor Phinney feels.

I’ve already emailed the winners, who have until this Monday to respond with a mailing address.

And thanks to everyone who entered. There were a lot of great responses, so don’t feel bad if you didn’t win.

It wasn’t an easy decision.

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A representative of the LAPD has confirmed that Jerico Culata, the 18-year old cyclist killed on the UCLA campus during last week’s Critical Mass ride, was riding a brakeless fixed gear bike, as many have speculated.

It appears that Culata was unable to control his bike on the moderately steep downhill; he didn’t have the strength or skill to slow down without brakes, lost control and struck a concrete wall head on, suffering non-survivable brain injuries.

Go ahead.

Make every argument against helmet use you want to make.

But this is exactly the sort of injury bike helmets were designed to protect against. And while no one can say Culata would have survived if he’d been wearing one, his chances clearly would have been better if he’d had one.

………

A spokesman for the CHP reports that Willis Veluz-Abraham may not have died as a result of rumble strips on Stunt Road, after all.

According to the officer, Veluz-Abraham was riding with a group of other riders who were filming him with a bike cam; he reportedly looked back at them just before taking a corner too fast, losing control and going off the side of the road.

The CHP investigation places no blame on the rumble strips that had recently been installed.

I might question that, myself.

Then again, it wouldn’t be the first time I’ve disagreed with the CHP.

Even if they didn’t contribute directly to his crash, the rumble strips could — repeat, could — have destabilized his bike enough that it was impossible to regain control. And even if they didn’t play a role in this case, it should be obvious to everyone that rumble strips and bikes don’t mix.

But I freely admit I may have gotten it wrong this time.

And let’s hope that video, if it still exists, never sees the light of day.

………

Still no news on last Saturday’s Topanga Canyon hit-and-run in which a Land Rover-driving coward left a cyclist seriously injured on the side of the road.

The CHP reports that the investigation is still ongoing, and no further details are available at this time.

However, they may need volunteers to distribute posters this weekend; I’ll let you know if they reach out for help.

………

Maybe you’ll recall the prompt response I got from UPS a couple months back, promising not to block any more Santa Monica bike lanes.

So much for that.

This was taken Tuesday on northbound San Vicente Blvd, just around the corner and a few blocks from the previous incident.

………

Finally, California gets another dangerous driver off the streets. And enough with the damn earthquakes, Beverly Hills. It’s just a desperate plea for attention, and we’re not falling for it.

Update: Cyclist critically injured in Topanga Cyn hit-and-run; $1000 reward offered for any hit-and-run

Update: I have deleted this entire post at the request of the victim’s wife.

While I stand behind the original story, with virtually every word I wrote based on information had already been tweeted and retweeted around the world — and which remains readily available from numerous other sources online — I am sympathetic to her situation and will honor her request, as much as I disagree with it.

I will note only that the victim was injured in a hit-and-run collision at or near the intersection of North Topanga Canyon Blvd and Viewridge Road in Topanga Canyon, and was reported to the CHP at 12:13 pm on Saturday. Authorities continue to look for a Land Rover with a missing headlight; no word on color and model year. Anyone with information should contact the West Valley CHP station at 818-888-0980.

Best wishes to the victim for a full and fast recovery.

Update 2: The CHP has identified the victim as 60-year old Gary Morris of Van Nuys; no word on his condition.

Authorities are looking for a 1996 to 2000 Range Rover — not a Land Rover as previously stated — with possible damage to the right front end. Anyone with information should call CHP Investigator Brooke Covington at 818-888-0980, ext. 228.  

Update 3: I’m told that the Daily News story I linked to above is incorrect, and the suspect vehicle is actually Land Rover, not a Range Rover.

……..

On a related note, I recently received an email from John Bisnar about HitAndRunReward.com, which provides a $1000 for information leading to the arrest of any hit-and-run driver.

We have a standing offer of $1,000 reward for information leading to a felony conviction of a hit and run driver.  Information on a hit and run driver is given to WeTip, a non-profit crime fighting organization.  WeTip has a process that ensures the anonymity of people providing information so that no one, not WeTip, not me, not anyone knows who provided the information.  WeTip then passes the information on to the appropriate law enforcement agency.  When a reward is due, WeTip has an anonymous method of paying the reward in cash.

Personally, I’d gladly settle for the feeling of relief that would come from putting one of these murderous, uncaring bastards behind bars. But a cool thousand bucks in your pocket couldn’t hurt, either.

………

Speaking of Lance, maybe you missed our contest to give away some CLIF Mojo bars over the weekend.

Between the tragic breaking news and usual mass exodus of L.A. that takes place on any three-day weekend, the contest may have gotten a little lost. So I’m extending the deadline one more day.

Just leave a comment on the original post with your favorite means of performance enhancement before or during a ride, and why — whether it’s something you eat, drink, do, listen to or meditate on — no later than 8 am Wednesday.

The winners — and yes, there will be more than one — will get a box of Mojo bars directly from CLIF Bar.

But be sure to use a valid, working email address, or I won’t be able to let you know you’ve won and get an address to send them to.

And no, they can’t just send them as an attachment.

……..

Finally, let Monday morning’s Beverly Hills earthquake serve as a reminder that when the Big One hits — or the zombie apocalypse starts — cars and transit systems will be useless. Your best, and perhaps only, choice for transportation will be a strong bike with flat-resistant tires.

And I’d like to know how the hell the biking black hole can give us an earthshaking 3:30 am wake-up call, but can’t manage to give us a single bike lane.

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