Morning Links: LA Vision Zero fail, bike & pedestrian deaths up in US — and LA, and possible bike death in Palm Springs

Good story from LAist about two pedestrian deaths that occurred within two hours last week.

And by extension, the city’s meager efforts at implementing Vision Zero.

Both victims, including a four-year old girl killed just 50 feet from her preschool, died on streets that are part of the city’s High Injury Network.

While overall traffic deaths are down in three of the four LAPD traffic divisions, pedestrian and bicycling deaths continue to make up 60% of all road deaths in the City of Los Angeles.

And in that fourth division, in West LA, traffic deaths are up a whopping 75%.

Not that the city isn’t doing anything about it.

According to L.A. Department of Transportation spokesman Colin Sweeney, the city has been picking up the pace on safety improvements.

“In 2019 alone, we introduced over 700 improvements to increase visibility of crosswalks — more than 2017 and 2018 combined,” Sweeney told LAist, adding that 77 speed feedback signs and “dozens of traffic signal and street design improvements” have also been installed.

But despite those efforts, preliminary traffic collision data from the Los Angeles Police Department shows that, with roughly 10 weeks left in 2019, the number of people seriously injured and killed by vehicles while walking L.A. streets this year is keeping pace with 2018’s figures.

If you want to observe a wasted effort in action, just stand next to one of those traffic feedback signs, and count how many people observe the speed limit. And how many drivers actually slow down.

Chances are, you’ll have more than enough fingers left over to let the city know what you really think about it.

Not surprisingly, LADOT was quick to demonstrate how little the city seems to understand what the hell Vision Zero even is.

When we asked LADOT about the increase, spokesman Colin Sweeney cited the improvement work the department had completed this year and added that while the city can re-engineer roadways, the other component to safer streets is safer behavior by motorists.

“Drivers need to realize the responsibility they take when they get behind the wheel,” he said. “That means avoiding distractions and slowing down on surface streets which are a shared public space — even 5 mph slower can save a life.”

Except Vision Zero is about reimagining the streets so human error does not result in deaths.

It’s not about eduction. It’s not, as the city often insists, about enforcement.

And it’s not about drivers taking responsibility, as nice as that would be.

It’s about re-imagining the damn streets themselves, so no one dies when they don’t.

And on that count, the city is failing miserably.

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Then again, the same pattern is holding true across the US, where overall traffic deaths are down 2.4%, according to the Washington Post.

Traffic fatalities fell for the second-straight year in 2018, the agency said, and the downward trend continues, with traffic deaths down 3.4 percent in the first six months of this year…

There also were fewer fatalities resulting from speeding and alcohol-impaired drivers. Additionally, there was a 10 percent reduction in the number of children killed in crashes.

That’s the good news. As long as you get around safely wrapped in a couple tons of glass and steel.

But while overall traffic fatalities were down, more pedestrians and bicyclists were killed on U.S. roads last year, accounting for nearly 20 percent of all traffic deaths.

According to NHTSA’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System data, 6,283 pedestrians and 857 people on bikes or similar nonmotorized vehicles were killed in 2018, increases of 3.4 percent and 6.3 percent, respectively. Federal officials said the rises were concentrated in urban areas.

Maybe someday we’ll have elected leaders who care enough to make the hard choices to put human lives over the convenience of motorists.

Let alone actually take steps to protect the planet.

But it hasn’t happened yet.

Not in the US. Not in California.

And not in Los Angeles.

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Sad news from Palm Springs, where a man was killed in a Palm Springs hit-and-run Monday night.

People who live in the area say the victim was riding a bicycle, but there’s no mention of that in the story, and no confirmation yet through other sources.

Hopefully we’ll get more information soon.

Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

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Just a quick, non-sponsored reminder that there is a nationwide roadside assistance program for people on bicycles, too.

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Metro Bike is waiving the standard fee for unlocking their ebikes through Halloween.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

A British man is under arrest for pulling up next to a bike rider in a car, and fatally stabbing him as he rode his bike. Police are looking for two other men who ran away from the crime scene, and say the attack did not appear to be random.

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Local

You could soon find yourself riding streets of plastic.

Congratulations to the Long Beach/Los Angeles metro area, on being recognized for having the worst air quality in the US. And yes, that’s sarcasm.

The latest SGV Connect podcast talks with the leaders of Calbike at their recent summit in Los Angeles.

The LA City Council Transportation Committee will discuss bikeway maintenance at today’s 1 pm meeting, as part of a long agenda.

Whittier beautifies a parking lot on the 4.6-mile Greenway Trail, a year before a 2.6-mile extension is scheduled to open.

CiclaValley and company go riding at Crystal Lake.

 

State

Ride 2 Recovery is raising funds for former motocross champ Micky Dymond, who suffered a severe brain injury and a number of other injuries in a solo fall while riding a time trial bike in Orange County; the group has raised over $13,000 of the $100,000 goal for the uninsured victim.

A 74-year old San Diego driver hit a man who riding his bike legally, and what should have been safely, in the bike lane, then just kept going because he thought he hit the curb. Which is prima facie evidence that maybe he shouldn’t be behind the wheel.

A group of five former Navy SEALs will embark on a 1,000-mile bike ride down the East Coast to raise funds for the VIP Neuro Rehabilitation Center in San Diego.

Morro Bay police are looking for the hit-and-run driver that left a bicyclist lying on the side of the road with critical injuries; police say he did everything right. But got hit anyway.

A Cotati man was seriously injured in a crash near Rohnert Park when a driver hit his bike. Naturally, the CHP didn’t hesitate to blame the victim.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever burgled a San Jose bike co-op serving homeless people twice in just four days.

 

National

A website for lovers of four wheel drive vehicles says if you enjoy taking one offroad, you probably already enjoy mountain biking, too.

Speaking of which, Singletracks lists five examples of trail etiquette that apply in the real world, too.

Americans took over 84 million bikeshare and e-scooter rides last year.

The NAACP calls the forcible arrest of a black Oregon State University student for riding salmon an attack on her civil rights.

The Houston Chronicle offers more on the 27-year old man killed in a collision after he pushed his fiancé off her bike just before the crash, sacrificing his own life to save hers.

A resident of a small Iowa town insists the city has been recruiting Chicago “thugs” to get funding for low income housing. And offers as proof backpack-wearing people riding BMX bikes at 2:30 am. Which just happens to be half an hour after the bars close, when employees who don’t have cars would be making their way home from work. Just saying.

A Missouri nonprofit has refurbished and given away 500 bicycles over the past few years, including one they dropped off just in time for a homeless man to get to a job interview.

A Wisconsin bike rider is suing after he was seriously injured when he hit a steel cable that came off a fence and was lying across the roadway.

The Chicago Tribune rates the best bicycle inner tubes.

An Akron, Ohio man was lucky to escape with his life when an armed thief jumped out of the bushes and demanded his valuables, pedaling away as the thief repeatedly fired at him.

A Toledo, Ohio recycling plant recovered a 1962 bicycle license that somehow became embedded in concrete that someone brought in to be crushed. Let’s hope the rest of the bike wasn’t in there, too. Or the rider, for that matter.

New York residents say the city will have to take “their” parking spaces out of their cold, dead fingers.

Comedian Billy Crystal barely avoided getting knocked down by an out-of-control food delivery rider who landed at his feet as he was filming his new movie in New York.

After someone steals a New Jersey convenience store manager’s unlocked bike, kindhearted customers pitch in to give him a new one, along with $600 cash.

The bike-riding woman who gained international fame for flipping off President Trump’s motorcade, and got fired as a result, is now running for county supervisor in Virginia.

 

International

Cycling News ranks the best steel frame bikes.

Strava users are angry the popular app is dropping support for Bluetooth and ANT+ devices.

Firefighters from Mexico City and Phoenix AZ recovered the body of a Mexican bike rider, who drowned after falling through a six-foot wide sinkhole in a Hermosillo street.

An English man who received a double lung transplant is riding 300 miles from London to Paris to raise the equivalent of over $25,000 for the hospital that performed the operation.

British police investigators are headed to the US to interview the wife of an American diplomat — or possibly spy — who killed a 19-year old motorcyclist, then claimed diplomatic immunity to flee the country.

Life is cheap in Northern Ireland, where a driver got just one year behind bars for plowing into a group of bicyclists, killing one man and seriously injuring another.

An Irish writer wonders why bike riders and pedestrians can’t just get along.

Five people crossed Australia’s 370-mile wide Simpson Desert on fat bikes, 80 years after it was crossed for the first time, without bikes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling Weekly rates the WorldTour teams on their success this part year; Deceuninck-Quick-Step topped the rankings, while Dimension Data might want to take up another sport.

Transgender Masters track champ Rachel McKinnon defends her right to compete — and win — in women’s cycling, while fending off criticism from other cyclists, as well as Donald Trump Jr.

 

Finally…

Skip the energy gels, and pass the French fries. Ride the future today.

And when in Rome, don’t trash the ebikes.

 

Morning Links: Warning tourists about bad LA bike lanes, slow roll to Major Taylor’s bike, and celebrate Eagle Rock bike lanes

Seriously.

How sad is it that the Fodor’s Travel site feels the need to warn tourist against LA’s slow buses, distracted drivers and virtually nonexistent bike lanes?

While we’re on the subject of size, let’s talk about how to get around. You have a lot of options, so choose wisely. You can rent a car, ride a bus, take the metro, hail a taxi, use a ride-sharing app, or scoot (ugh). Lesson 1. Never ride the bus. It takes too long to get anywhere. Lesson 2. The metro doesn’t go everywhere, so pick your routes carefully. Lesson 3. Ride-sharing apps are infinitely cheaper than taxis (download Uber and/or Lyft). Lesson 4. If you must, scoot. The newest transport kids on the block are Lime and Byrd, electric scooters that make it easy to get around individual neighborhoods. Just be careful because bike lanes are scarce and L.A. drivers don’t look (read: they’re on their phones).

Photo by Sergij from Pexels.

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Sounds like fun.

You’re invited to take a slow roll from Leimert Park to Pasadena on Novenber 16th to see the actual bike ridden by turn of the century African-American cycling legend Major Taylor, recently purchased by the owner of Velo Pasadena for his own bicycling museum.

That’s the turn of the previous century, not the last one.

As in the 1890s.

Which makes Taylor just the second black world champion in any sport. Even if he was riding on wooden rims.

Thanks to David Huntsman for the heads-up.

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Or maybe you’d rather come out this Saturday to celebrate Eagle Rock’s bike lanes, and plan for more Complete Streets to come.

Thanks to Felicia G for the tip.

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Who needs a mountain to mountain bike?

Unless you speak German, feel free to skip the first 1:30 or so.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

A road raging British driver was fined the equivalent of $5,800 for grabbing a teenage bike rider by the collar and twice spitting in his face, after the boy flipped him off when the driver honked at him.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels who are the problem.

Sacramento police are looking for the bike-riding jerk who slapped a woman on the ass, then came back several minutes later and did it again.

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Local

Bike Talk talks Metro Culture, and the death of a four-year old girl crossing the street with her mother in Koreatown last week.

Congratulations to UCLA on being named a gold-level Bicycle Friendly University, the first school in LA County to achieve that status.

Actor Christian Bale is one of us, as he rides his cruiser bike to Venice with his five-year old son in tow.

Long Beach is mourning the death of artist and graphic designer Katie Phillips, who was also one of the founders of the city’s Kidical Mass; described as a “beautiful soul,” she passed away over the weekend.

 

State

You can now pre-order the recently adopted California Bicycle Special License Plate for your car or truck; the state is required to get 7,500 pre-orders before it can go into production. Or you could skip the license, sell your car and get a new bike or ebike instead. Just saying.

Tickets for distracted driving have dropped in San Diego. Which is less likely to be the result of drivers putting their phone away than police giving up in the face of overwhelming numbers.

Watsonville bike riders are getting shiny new green bike lanes today.

A reminder that Los Angeles police still don’t have a bait bike program despite rampant bike thefts, as police in Danville bust a man who cut the lock and tried to ride off on their GPS-equipped bike.

 

National

Dockless mopeds are soon headed to a street near you.

Your next ebike could be a Harley Rude Boy.

NPR examines the struggle by the National Parks Service to develop policies on whether or not to allow ebikes in each individual park, and how.

Oregon state police have released the full 38-minute body cam video of the arrest of a young black woman for the crime of riding salmon on the campus of Oregon State University, which has been criticized for excessive force.

Denver’s mayor agrees to study lowering default speed limits to 20 mph, but cuts funding for the study nearly in half.

Heartbreaking story from Texas, where a man sacrificed his own life to save his fiancé, pushing her off her bike as they were riding together just before he was struck by a motorist.

Queens bicyclists protest the 500 days since they were promised a protected bike lane along the city’s “Boulevard of Death,” which hasn’t even been started yet.

The author of a history of bicycling in NYC says things are better than they used to be, but bikes will probably always be “somewhat marginalized.”

A Streetsblog op-ed says New York public meetings are getting meaner and less truthful in the Trump era. A phenomenon we’ve unfortunately seen here in SoCal, too.

This is why people keep dying on the streets, as authorities manage to keep yet another dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late. A Pennsylvania man with a history of blackouts and seizures behind the wheel faces a vehicular homicide charge for blowing a stop sign and plowing into a man on a bike; he’s had at least three other seizure related crashes.

Bicycling deaths are up nearly 30% over last year in South Carolina.

Atlanta installed a temporary pop-up bike lane connecting two other bike lanes for the next week to give everyone a chance to see how it works before they complain.

The admittedly drunk driver who plowed through a group of bike riders during a New Orleans Mardi Gras parade pled guilty to 14 counts, but will still go trial next week on two remaining counts of vehicular homicide; how much time be spends behind bars will be determined by whether a judge rules his BAC was above .20 at the time of the crash.

There’s a special place in hell for the Florida couple that held a 12-year old boy at knife point and took his bicycle, locking it inside their home.

 

International

Forget carbon. Your next ebike could be made from injection-molded thermoplastic.

A London man is on trial for killing a pedestrian while he was riding an ebike, which was allegedly traveling faster than the law allows.

An English security cam video shows just how fast a bike thief can make off with an unlocked bike. Hint: How long does it take to hop on one and pedal away?

A British town is offering an amnesty to get people to return stolen bikeshare bikes.

The UK will reconsider the rules governing diplomatic immunity, after admitting government officials knew the wife of an American diplomat responsible for the hit-and-run death of a young motorcycle rider was going to flee the country to avoid prosecution.

An Indian regional leader multi-modaled his way to the voting booth, traveling by train and pedicab, and finishing the journey by bicycle.

 

Finally…

Undying for a good time. What good is a new bike path if it’s under water most of the year?

And why run for president when you can go by bike?

Morning Links: Uber & Lyft blamed for traffic deaths, file LAPD theft and hit-and-run reports online, and lots of bike videos

Let’s start with a few new studies today.

Researchers from Rice University and the University of Chicago point the finger at Uber and Lyft for the recent rise in traffic deaths, noting that fatality rates shot up in cities across the US as ride hailing companies set up shop.

A new study shows that while bicycling and pedestrian deaths are on the rise across the US, biking and walking deaths among school-aged children continue to decline; the authors credit programs like Safe Routes to Schools. Although a stronger argument could be made that the decline is due to fewer children walking and riding bikes, as more parents ferry their children everywhere.

A married couple conducted their own study, riding 1,476 miles across the British Isles to monitor air pollution, and finding that 70% of the ride exceeded safe levels established by the World Health Organization.

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In sort of good news, you can now file theft reports with the LAPD online, including bike thefts, as well as non-emergency hit-and-runs.

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Buena Park wants your input on proposed bike facilities. No, really.

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It takes real skill to fail to notice several grown men on bicycles, and take out most of them in a single right hook.

Thanks to David Huntsman for the heads-up.

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Coming to your friend’s rescue is always a good thing. So is moving your bike out of the way first.

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When you’re Danny MacAskill, you make your own weather.

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Translated, it says “Those cyclists feel superior.”

And sometimes, they have a right to.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

Sometimes, the video says it all.

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Local

Streetsblog reports around 30 people turned out at City Hall on Friday to demand safer streets, following the death of a four-year old girl in Koreatown two days earlier. Not a bad turnout given the short lead time. Let’s hope they can give more notice next time so even more people can show up.

LADOT has begun the city’s first-ever count of bicyclists and pedestrians, finally establishing benchmarks for measuring non-motorized traffic on the city’s streets; prior to this, the only counts were done by advocacy groups LACBC and LA Walks.

Curbed’s Alissa Walker calls for emulating San Francisco’s closure of Market Street to private motor vehicles, and suggests seven LA-area streets that should be closed to cars and opened to people. It would be hard to make a case for closing Sunset, Santa Monica and Wilshire boulevards, as she suggests, since they represent three major parallel crosstown routes; a better case could be made for closing Wilshire and Hollywood to cars.

The new EP by LA musician Nacho Cano, who records under the name Harmless, documents the crash with a speeding drunk driver that nearly took his life as he was riding his bike to work, and the long, painful recovery that followed.

The mayor of Santa Clarita invites you to hop on your bike and tour the city’s bike trails and new bike lanes, and credits the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition for helping increase the popularity of bicycling in the area.

 

State

A Bay Area newspaper says the perfect romantic getaway is 48 hours of bikes and wine in Paso Robles.

A San Jose nonprofit bike shop is still committed to serving the homeless despite two burglaries in the last week; the shop has given away 3,500 refurbished bikes to homeless people, and made over 200,000 repairs for them.

In a story that should sound familiar to any bike-riding catcall-suffering women, the San Francisco Chronicle chronicles the sexual-based backlash suffered by women bicyclists in the 1890s.

The Napa County library has a new branch that travels on three wheels, plus a book-carting trailer.

Santa Rosa is just the latest California city to deal with a homeless camp overrunning a local bike path.

Sacramento bridge will be rebuilt for bicyclists and pedestrians when a new bridge is completed in a few years.

Zombies roll through bike-friendly Davis.

 

National

Outside profiles former professional mountain biker and three-time world 24-hour mountain bike champ Steve Fassbinder, who’s devoted his post-racing retirement to biking, rafting mountain climbing and llama riding adventures around the globe.

A CityLab op-ed accuses micromobility advocates of thinking small, saying instead of asking for bike lanes we should be demanding a world where cars are marginalized and universal basic mobility is seen as a human right.

MIPS and WaveCel could soon have new competition from Specialized. Oddly, my brother got his MIPS helmet by finding it on the side of the road. And no, there wasn’t a head in it at the time.

Surprisingly, Yahoo says you can’t power an entire city with your bike. It’s not surprising you can’t generate that much power with your bike; it’s surprising that Yahoo is still around.

Students at Oregon State University are angry over the arrest of a young black woman who was aggressively wrestled to the ground and cuffed by two state cops for the crime of riding salmon, leading the university to threaten to cut ties with the state police.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 75-year old Arizona man celebrates his birthday by biking his age.

An eight-year old Texas girl born with just half a left arm can ride a bike for the first time, thanks to the first multi-grip bionic arm for kids that young.

Actor Dennis Christopher returns to Indiana for the 40th anniversary of the iconic bike film Breaking Away.

We all know Patrick Dempsey is one of us, right? He returned to his Maine hometown last month, raising $1.2 million for his eponymous center for cancer patients and their families through a bicycling and running event.

A Long Island village became the second area community to approve prosecuting and seizing the bikes of teenage bicyclists for blocking traffic, riding towards moving cars, and otherwise antagonizing motorists.

House of Cards and Jack Ryan actor — and former New York bike messenger — Michael Kelly is one of us, making time to ride his bicycle on the city’s streets every day.

Still more carnage from the Big Apple, where a 66-year old woman died a month after her bike was struck by the driver of a large van, raising the number of 2019 bicycle deaths to 26, compared to ten for all of last year. Needless to say, the NYPD immediately blamed the victim.

In an all-too-typical sign of the times, the family of a black Philadelphia delivery bicyclist has started getting threats and online harassment after he was acquitted of killing a road-raging white motorist who threatened to “beat the black off” him.

He gets it. A writer for the Washington Post asks why we put up with a transit system that kills, maims and wastes hours of our time. Why, indeed. Any transportation system that accepts deaths as a normal part of getting from here to there is an abject failure. 

 

International

Cycling Weekly says take concussions seriously. It could save your life.

Quartz says downtown areas around the world are slowly giving up on personal cars. Except for Downtown Los Angeles, of course, although even DTLA is finally getting around to accommodating bikes, thanks primarily to Councilmember José Huizar.

After a Winnipeg driver right hooks a woman riding her bike on the sidewalk, he complains that he’s being unfairly held responsible because she hit his car.

In a plan that could have been dreamed up by Robin Hood himself, Nottingham, England charges employers for each parking space, then uses the money to reduce car usage.

Road.cc explains why many British bicyclists don’t ride far to the right…uh, left. Just reverse the direction, and it explains why you should take the lane on most streets without bike lanes over here, too.

Welsh doctors can now prescribe six months of free bikeshare to improve patients’ physical and mental health.

One more for your bike bucket list — a 500-mile bicycling route through the fields of Flanders.

An Irish writer bikes the route of the Berlin Wall, nearly 30 years after it fell.

Pune, India is recruiting volunteers to patrol the city’s bikeways and report people who park in them, and other violations, to the police for “corrective action.”

A new Australian safety program focuses on young drivers, because young men are taking too many chances behind the wheel. And bike riders are paying the price.

The best laid plans of mice and bike thieves. A pair of Aussie thieves steal the security cameras from a Sydney parking garage, then come back the next night to steal a bicycle — unaware they were being recorded by dash cam.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dr. Rachel McKinnon retained her world title for the women’s 200 meter sprint in the 35-39 age group, renewing debate over whether female transgender athletes have an unfair advantage over other women.

Dutch cyclist Laurens ten Dam calls it a career after a mere 17 years, leaving the WorldTour to take up gravel grinding.

Legendary cyclist Eddy Merckx got the okay to go home, five days after the 74-year old five-time Tour de France winner suffered a serious head injury in a solo crash.

The Sunweb team responds to the crash that paralyzed 19-year old cyclist Edo Maas by insisting UCI and race organizers need to really focus on safety to prevent future tragedies.

 

Finally…

Young man turns blue after biking across Montana. Four shots, one faceplant.

And Michael Meyers is one of us, too.

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Thanks to John L for his generous donation to support this site.

As we noted before, it would take just $10 from everyone who visits BikinginLA today to fund it for an entire year; John says he says he gave extra to make up for a couple people who didn’t.

Update: Bike rider killed in North Hills hit-and-run; victim struck by two drivers, second fled on foot

News is just breaking that a bike rider was killed in LA’s North Hills neighborhood Friday night.

According to KABC-7, the victim was struck by two cars around 8:30 pm at Rayen Street and Woodley Ave in North Hills; the first driver stayed at the scene, while the second reportedly abandoned his car and ran away.

The victim died after being taken to a local hospital.

In a story that hasn’t been posted online yet, KNBC-4 reports the victim was knocked off his or her bike by the first driver before getting hit by the second, who fled on foot.

Judging by the bike lanes visible in the video, the crash appears to have occurred on Woodley Ave just south of Rayen. Video from the scene shows the victim’s mangled bicycle resting on the center yellow line, with the abandoned car blocking both southbound lanes.

No other details or description of the victim are available at this time.

This is at least the 60th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 26th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also 12th bicyclist killed in the City of Los Angeles this year.

Update: The LA Daily News describes the victim as a 56-year old man.

According to the paper, the victim was attempting to turn left onto southbound Woodley against the light when he was struck by a southbound 21-year old driver in a Lexus.

That was confirmed by a witness who left a comment below.

The Lexus driver was attempting to make a U-turn to get back to the victim when the bike rider was run over by the second driver, who fled the scene in his or her car — not on foot as originally reported. Again, that’s confirmed by the commenter below.

The suspect vehicle is described only as a black sedan.

A ghost bike will be placed at the scene Monday night. 

Anyone with information is urged to call the LAPD Valley Traffic Division at 818/644-8000.

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

Morning Links: Vision Zero protest at City Hall today, SCAG is hiring, and Chinese TV network discovers CicLAvia

Someone’s finally taking the fight to City Hall.

A trio of “concerned citizens” are fed up with LA’s continuing failure to implement Vision Zero, and the rising death toll that has resulted.

And calling for a protest on the steps of the building this morning.

Unfortunately, I didn’t receive notice until yesterday afternoon. So it may be over by the time you read this.

But here’s what they have to say.

What Happened to Vision Zero?

A protest in front of City Hall

LOS ANGELES, OCTOBER 17, 2019–On Friday, October 18th, at 8am, safe streets advocates, parents, community leaders and concerned Angelinos will gather on the steps of City Hall to send a strong message to Mayor Garcetti, the City Council, and the Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT): Enough is enough! 

We estimate over a hundred people have died walking or biking in our city since 2019 at the hands of motorists. On Wednesday, Alexa, a 4-year old girl, was killed in the crosswalk while walking to preschool with her mother.

Graphic by tomexploresla

 

In 2015, Mayor Eric Garcetti committed to the popular Vision Zero initiative, aimed at ending all traffic deaths by increasing safe and equitable mobility for all. The ultimate goal is to reduce traffic related deaths to zero by 2025. Yet rather than decline, fatal traffic collisions have risen by more than 32% in Los Angeles (LATIMES) despite reported measures taken by LADOT and the Mayor’s office.  

The sad reality is that in Los Angeles County, the leading cause of death for children ages 5-14, is traffic collisions – with poor neighborhoods being disproportionately affected. Nationwide vulnerable road users die every 90 minutes. (LATIMES) Therefore, we ask Mayor Garcetti, City Council, and other responsible parties for safe streets now.

This protest is a grassroots event organized by Andres Quinche, Bob Frederick and Tom Carroll and is not sponsored by any specific entity, we are just three concerned citizens who are tired of standing by. 

Let’s move our public discourse out of the binary debates between more or less freedom and start humanizing our streets.

PROTEST DETAILS

WHEN: Friday October 18, at 8 AM-9 AM

WHERE: LA City Hall Steps (Spring St side)

 

Hopefully, more than just the three of them will turn out on such short notice.

But it’s heartening to see that people are finally getting fed up. And willing to take to the streets to do something about it.

Protest graphics by Victor Hugo Cuevas.

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If anyone with solid communication and community engagement skills needs a new job, the Southern California Association of Governments is looking for you.

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A Chinese TV network discover’s CicLAvia, and says the open streets event promotes greener, healthier policies.

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Nothing like going for a morning drive. On a bike path.

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Local

A Metro committee has approved plans for two new bike and pedestrian bridges connecting with the L.A. River Glendale Narrows bike/walk path in Glendale.

Santa Clarita’s mayor pro tem led a group of people attending Calbike’s three-day California Bicycle Summit on a tour of the city’s bike paths.

Brian Addison of the Long Beach Post looks back to the days when the greater LA area was the urban rail capital of the world. Imagine how safe bicycling would be today if we still had a world-class rail system running on every major boulevard.

Speaking of which, Metro’s erstwhile Blue Line will reopen next month as the newly renamed A Line. And not, unfortunately, the A Train.

 

State

Congratulations to UC Santa Barbara for achieving the elite platinum-level Bicycle Friendly University designation.

Police in Morro Bay are looking for a heartless coward who left a critically injured 55-year old man bleeding in a bike lane after slamming into him as he was riding his bike home from work.

School kids in the tiny coastal town of Oceano turned out to welcome dozens of veterans participating in the annual Project Hero California Challenge ride from Santa Cruz to Santa Barbara.

A new glowing map shows San Francisco’s most popular streets for bicycling, as shown by the people riding them. It would be nice to see the same map for Los Angeles, although it would probably look very different.

The FBI is offering a $10,000 reward for the woman charged with fleeing the scene after killing a 71-year old man riding his bike; she reportedly hit him head-on while driving on the wrong side of the road. The FBI became involved after she fled the state, possibly to Mexico.

 

National

Jalopnik considers how the bicycle changed the world for women.

Life is cheap in Hawaii, where a drift-racing driver got just one year behind bars for slamming into a triathlete participating in a group ride, leaving her with serious injuries that have already required a number of operations, with more on the way.

St. George, Utah will host a pop-up protected bike lane next week, to demonstrate what residents could enjoy, paid for by Spin.

Hundreds of kindhearted Texans dug into their own pockets to help an Army vet who suffers from seizures get a new, and better, bicycle just one day after his was stolen.

The Chicago Tribune considers bicycle seats, and says go with the classic and get a Brooks saddle, while a writer for the same paper tries to assemble a Thule bike rack, and makes call a friend her final answer.

An Indiana website talks with Dennis Christopher, the star of Breaking Away. And yes, that movie was why I started bicycling again, after selling my 10-speed to attend college.

A Pittsburgh advocacy group counted 123 drivers stopped in just four city bike lanes during the morning, noon and evening rush hours.

After initially blaming the victim, as usual, the NYPD quietly changed a police report to reflect that a fallen cyclist was not at fault in the crash that killed him, after all.

A Philadelphia bicycle delivery rider was acquitted of most charges for fatally stabbing a road-raging driver who attacked him after he tried to intervene in the man’s dispute with another driver; the white victim, a former Penn State quarterback, had threatened to “beat the black off” the delivery rider.

This is why you should let the police handle it. An Atlanta-area father and his ten-year old son were both shot in a bikejacking when they interrupted a burglar going through their garage.

 

International

Cycling Tips looks back at the more than 130-year history of anti-bike bias.

A podcast featuring a global panel discusses future of road bikes, asking how new tech can make cycling better. Meanwhile, Road.cc looks back at ten retro tech inventions that changed bicycling for the better.

Promising to keep you safer on the streets, a new app has launched that will turn your smartphone into a crash detector and call for help if you don’t tell it you’re okay.

Castelli’s relatively new clothing line promises to keep you cool on hot days, yet be virtually waterproof in the rain.

A writer for a UK style magazine says she’s tired of being verbally abused when she rides London streets.

The ancient city of Hue, Vietnam, is launching a bicycle tourism service that sounds a lot like bikeshare by another name.

Life is cheap in Singapore, where a cab driver got a whole week behind bars for crashing into a woman on a bicycle, leaving her with serious injuries, including lingering damage to one eye. On the other hand, the driver did get a two-year driving ban, which will force her to find another line of work when she gets out.

 

Competitive Cycling

More heartbreaking news from the world of pro cycling, as 19-year old Dutch cyclist Edo Maas has been told he will likely never walk again. The promising Sunweb rider was descending at around 44 mph when he crashed into a car that had somehow gotten on a race course earlier this month. In a tragic irony, the crash that left him a paraplegic occurred on Italy’s Madonna del Ghisallo hill, named after the patron saint of bicycling.

More on the retirement of former cycling scion Taylor Phinney, who leaves professional cycling to pursue art. Best take so far, is that Phinney never let one horrible crash define him. And Phinney offers a powerful comment that there’s power in recognizing you no longer have passion for what you do.

A 27-year old San Diego man became the first person with both legs amputated above the knee to complete in the Ironman World Championship in Hawaii, using a kneeling handcycle for the 112-mile bicycling leg and running blades for the marathon-length running portion.

Katusha-Alpecin bites the dust, as the Israel Cycling Academy takes over their WorldTour team, leaving many Katusha riders wondering if they’ll have jobs next year.

Twenty-two-year old American world time trial champ Chloé Dygert says she plans on competing in the next six Olympics, which would make her 45 when she finally retires.

 

Finally…

Build your next bike by dumpster diving. Bike-riding dogs in the rain.

And your BMX bike is now the most sought after retro toy.

Except it isn’t. A toy, that is.

 

Morning Links: Bike-riding animal shelter burglars, bike rider attacked on Arroyo Seco path, and anti-bike bias in the news

Smile for the camera.

A pair of bungling bike-riding burglars broke into the spcaLA Pet Adoption Center in Los Angeles’ West Adams neighborhood, apparently looking for drugs before making off with a small safe.

Both burglars were clearly caught on security cams, one still wearing his bike helmet. Which raises the question, what kind of schmuck steals from a freaking animal shelter?

Thanks to Meghan Lynch for the heads-up.

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Maybe the newly re-opened Arroyo Seco bike path isn’t all that safe after all.

A bike rider posted on Next Door about his encounter with a homeless man who tried to attack him with a steel pipe.

I’ve removed his name to protect his privacy.

This attack is no different than what riders have experienced on the LA River bike path, the Orange Line bike path, or along Ballona Creek. Or any other bikeway out of sight of the public.

While the pathways provide a route safe from the dangers posed by cars and their often distracted and/or aggressive drivers, secluded paths provide cover for those who would harm or rob bike riders and pedestrians.

Although to be honest, it doesn’t happen often.

But it does happen, and will keep on happening, until the LAPD, sheriff’s department and other police agencies finally figure out who the hell has jurisdiction on the paths. And begin regular bike patrols to keep riders safe, just as they patrol the streets in cars.

It also couldn’t hurt to provide better training for 911 operators so they have a clue where the bike paths are, and who has responsibility for policing them.

So the next time someone calls for help, they might actually get it.

Thanks to Harv for the tip.

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No bias here.

Someone in Boston is warning about the vast bicycle lobby and non-resident conspiracy coming to take your traffic lanes.

They’re on to us, comrades.

Meanwhile, a WaPo columnist says bicyclists are pushing for stricter laws and enforcement in DC in an attempt to gain supremacy on the streets.

Rather than just, you know, stay alive.

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More proof that registering your bike works.

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Apparently, there’s a lack of functional bike racks in the South Bay.

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Nope. Nothing odd here.

Nothing at all.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

Once again, English police are looking for a man who leaned out of a car window and pushed a bicyclist off his bike into a hedge. This time, however, the grinning jackass was caught on camera, so hopefully that won’t be the only way he gets caught.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A 25-year old Chicago man faces charges for spitting at a bank employee after being told the bank was closed, then throwing his bicycle to the ground before going back and punching an employee in the face. Evidently, it’s the only bank in the world that doesn’t lock its doors at closing time.

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Local

Letter writers take the LA Times to task for recent stories about gas tax money being used for transit and active transportation projects, saying taxes from non-drivers pay for services for motorists, and alternative forms of transportation are necessary to fight climate change. They’re right.

The LA City Council approved a motion by CD14 Councilmember José Huizar to install a two-way protected bike lane on Main Street in DTLA, instead of the previously planned one-way lane. The new lane will complement the two-way lane a block away on Spring Street; construction should be finished next month.

 

State

The new coach of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim is one of us.

Yet another payout for bad sidewalks in San Diego, where a bike rider received a $1.25 million settlement from the city for his injuries.

San Diego police are looking for the heartless coward who fled the scene after running down a 64-year old man walking his bike in an Ocean Beach bike lane, leaving the victim with multiple severe injuries.

A Cathedral City bike rider was injured when an 86-year old woman suffered an undisclosed medical emergency behind the wheel, crashing into him and continuing on before hitting another car.

A Bay Area writer says yes, some e-scooter riders are obnoxious, but scooters could help solve crippling congestion.

They get it. The San Francisco Chronicle says banning cars from Market Street will save lives, shorten commutes and improve street life; a rendering shows what a more livable, human-scaled Market Street will look like. Meanwhile, San Francisco Curbed asks what other streets should ban cars, and concludes, probably most of them.

 

National

Wired says the death of cars has been greatly exaggerated, as car ownership is climbing, despite predictions. No shit.

A Portland-area weekly says sell your car and buy and ebike, and promises it will change your life.

After suffering one too many concussions, former pro cyclist Scott Nydam is opening a combination bike and coffee shop in Gallop NM to help train young members of the Navaho Nation as bike mechanics and baristas; he’s already sponsoring a Navaho mountain bike team for middle and high school students.

Montana bike riders are recording roadkill to help officials find hotspots for animal crossings and fatal collisions. There’s an obvious joke there, but we’ll let it pass this time.

More on Iowa’s great RAGBRAI rift, as the organizers of the cross-state ride leave to form their own seven-day tour in a dispute with their longtime newspaper sponsor; fans fear for the future of the popular ride.

An Oklahoma City man was sentenced to 15 years behind bars after police chased him down for not having a rear light on his bike, and found a baggie full of a white powdery substance in his backpack — which turned out to be powdered milk, despite a false positive test for cocaine.

A Milwaukee hit-and-run driver was busted after he stole a bicycle to flee from a collision, then broke into an occupied house in a vain attempt to escape the cops.

An Illinois bike rider was lucky to survive a crash with the driver of a semi-truck who drove directly into him as he was crossing a gas station driveway on the sidewalk; remarkably, the driver claimed he didn’t know he’d hit anyone, even though the driver honked at him and he was directly in front of the truck. Be sure you really want to see the video, because it’s hard to watch someone get hit like that, even if he does get up afterwards.

An Indiana man is back home after a four-year bike ride around the world, or as he puts it, “a kind, generous earth.”

This is who we share the roads with. Two road raging brothers are under arrest for fatally shooting a St. Louis man in front of his four kids. Let’s hope those two never see the light of day again.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 92-year old diabetic Cincinnati man is taking part in this week’s JDRF Death Valley Ride to Cure Diabetes; he’s already raised over $47,500 for the ride. I’ve already got the diabetes. And a bike.

Good idea. Pittsburgh bike riders are out to track drivers blocking bike lanes. Think of it as a bike count, but for scofflaw drivers.

Stealing a Pittsburgh man’s ebike is one thing. But taking his dog is just going too damn far.

A group of professional flat track motorcycle racers will take off next month on a six day, 580-mile bicycle ride down the Florida coast to raise funds for injured riders; they’ve already raised $5,000 of the too low $10,000 goal.

 

International

Your next bike could be covered in sawtooth bumps for better aerodynamics.

Cycling Tips asks if you could live with just one bike for a year. Shouldn’t be too hard, considering most people only have one. Myself included.

A Vancouver professor says yes, bike riders really do pay taxes, just like everyone else.

A partially paralyzed British Columbia man got his three-wheeled recumbent ebike back more than a year after it was stolen, thanks to kind hearted cops who dipped into their own pockets to get it back to rideable condition.

The parents of 19-year old Harry Dunn, the English motorcyclist who was killed in a hit-and-run by the wife of an American diplomat who fled the country after claiming diplomatic immunity, call a meeting with President Trump a stunt and ambush, after he offered to introduce them to their son’s killer with cameras waiting in the wings. And made it clear he’s not planning to send her back to face charges.

More Parisiens are riding bikes than ever before, thanks to new bikeways in the City of Lights, combined with a transit strike and more government support for bicycling. Someone should tell LA Mayor Garcetti and the city council that could happen here, too. And our weather is better.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former cycling scion Taylor Phinney announced his retirement, five years after suffering a career-threatening crash trying to avoid a race moto during the 2014 road race nats, just days after winning the national time trial title. He was told he might never walk again, let alone ride, but returned to win his third national time trial title two years later; unfortunately, though, he wasn’t able to recapture the road race magic that had made him a fan favorite. His last race will be in Japan this weekend.

Life is cheap in Australia, where the driver who killed 23-year old pro cyclist Jason Lowndes is unlikely to spend a single day in jail, despite texting just 68 seconds before the crash.

Bicycling says next year’s Tour de France could be one of the most unpredictable ever.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to attack strangers while butt naked, maybe choose a better weapon than a bike wheel. Nothing like a little used inner tube haute couture.

And this seven-year old gives a whole new meaning to “ride like a girl.”

 

43-year old Bino Conde dies days after crash while standing with his bike on Oxnard sidewalk

Sadly, another man has died days after he was injured in an Oxnard crash.

And all he did was stand on a street corner with his bike.

According to the Ventura County Star, 43-year old Oxnard resident Bino Conde was injured Wednesday afternoon as a result of a collision he wasn’t even involved in.

Conde was standing on the corner of Saviers Road and Bard Road when he was struck by a pickup driven by a 23-year old man that overturned in a crash.

A car driven by a 88-year old woman was headed south on Saviers when she tried to turn left on Bard, and collided with the northbound pickup. The truck rolled over, striking Conde on the northeast corner.

He was taken to Ventura County Medical Center, where he died of his injuries on Saturday.

And no, there’s probably nothing he could have done to avoid something like that.

This is at least the 59th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and just the fifth that I’m aware of in Ventura County; four of those have been in Oxnard.

Conde died just one day after another man was killed riding his bike the wrong way, just two miles away, at Saviers Road and West Wooley Road.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Bino Conde and his loved ones.

 

67-year old Thomas Burke dies five days after bike hit by pickup driver in San Diego’s Otay Mesa

Last week, we were told a San Diego man was expected to survive a brain injury suffered when his bike was hit by a truck in Otay Mesa.

Today, we learned he didn’t.

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that 67-year old Thomas Burke died on Monday, five days after he was injured last Wednesday morning.

Burke was riding north on Beyer Boulevard near Del Sol Boulevard when he was struck by a pickup driver around 11:35 am. He was taken to a hospital in the Hillcrest neighborhood with a brain bleed and other injuries that were expected to be survivable.

Police initially said he was riding in the left of two lanes on the four lane street. However, according to the San Diego Medical Examiner’s Office, Burke was in a designated bike lane when he was run down from behind.

Which means he definitely did not come out of nowhere, as one witness said.

Just two more example why you should always take initial reports with a grain of salt. If not the entire bag.

The crash remains under investigation. But if Burke was riding in the bike lane, there should be no question who was at fault.

This is at least the 58th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and just the second that I’m aware of in San Diego County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Thomas Burke and his loved ones.

 

Morning Links: Murder charge for killer of Costa Mesa fire captain, Mehta hit-and-run hearing, and racing with a feeding tube

Let’s catch up with a few court cases.

Starting with the allegedly stoned killer of Costa Mesa Fire Captain Mike Kreza, courtesy of our anonymous courtroom correspondent.

Stephen Taylor Scarpa’s arraignment, scheduled for last Friday, was delayed again.

There are so many facets of this case that don’t look good for him: his status as an addict; his admission during interrogation that he should not have been driving; the amount and sheer number of drugs in his system; the presence in his vehicle of drugs obtained from an alleged overprescriber; his crash after “passing out” behind the wheel earlier in the year… etc.

He’s going down.

What perplexes me is the murder charge, because I can’t find any evidence of a prior DUI conviction — within LA or Orange County, at any rate. He could have priors elsewhere.

The Watson law is specific in its requirements: party has to be informed upon a DUI conviction of the possibility of a murder charge if said party kills someone while DUI.

So, this would mean, wouldn’t it, that Scarpa’s been convicted in some court at some point within the past 10 years?

A Watson advisement notwithstanding, PSA’s, American alcohol ads, and the DMV paperwork you sign before the state issues you a license all tell you that DUI is dangerous. But is that bombardment of facts enough to define malice, which is a required component of murder?

There’s one other thing that might convince a jury that Scarpa was aware of the dangers of DUI, enough so to convict of murder and not just manslaughter.

In 2011, as a student at Esperanza High, he participated in an Every Fifteen Minutes event, which is pretty comprehensive. In addition to pulling “dead” students out of classrooms every 15 minutes, a simulated collision is set up on campus, with the driver “arrested,” and moulaged “injured” & “dead” students extricated from the wreckage. These actors don’t go home that night; they’re sequestered overnight at a hotel, where they write a “Today I died” letter to their parents. (The parents also write to their dead kids.) The next day, these letters are read aloud at a school assembly.

Scarpa was one of the dead who was extricated from a mangled vehicle, who told his parents he died, who read this letter to his entire school.

I hope, every night before he falls asleep, he thinks of all the letters Mike Kreza never gets to write.

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Next up is yesterday’s hearing for the romance authorMedium contributor and Mercedes convertible driver convicted of a hit-and-run that left a Costa Mesa bike rider with a broken ankle.

Pratiti Renee Mehta is back from her vacation in Chowchilla Women’s Facility. She’s in custody in County, awaiting a court appearance this morning. I will be there, because I am a horrible person and will enjoy seeing her violent, unrepentant ass in saggy jail-issued fashion and shackles. The sentencing was in July, and I missed it. How it wasn’t  on my calendar, I dunno. (Busy week with the PAC on the 18th and the Caltrans D7 BAC on the 19th, but I wouldn’t have skipped the sentencing for anything.)

Due to a “clerical inadvertency,” Mehta had been sent up to state prison prior to a required sentencing assessment.

According to court records, on July 17th, the Defense’s request to reduce the felony hit-and-run count to a misdemeanor was denied, and then the judge sentenced Ms. Mehta to 3 years in state prison.

Two other things surprise me about the sentence: (1) The judge actually threw the book at her, wow. (2) The People didn’t request anything close.

That’s right, the People actually requested leniency: 90 days in County and an additional 200 hours of community service. For a woman who broke a guy’s bones, left him in the street, and then put in deliberate effort to lie to the cops about it. I remain furious that the ADW charge didn’t stick.

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Great piece about an 18-year old competitor in Saturday’s Hillclimb World Championships, who almost literally climbed out of her deathbed to become one of the top young American riders.

Hannah Jordan suffers from an unknown metabolic disorder that prevents her body from storing glucose; when she started on an intravenous formula from a Santa Barbara company, she began to thrive — and kick ass on her bicycle.

She’ll compete in Phil Gaimon’s hillclimb competition on Gibraltar Road with the feeding tube attached, then may train for international competition at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs CO.

And yes, her tube has been approved for competition.

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Four Boston kids were extremely lucky to avoid serious injury when someone drove directly into them as they stood with their bikes between two parked cars, then sped off with at least one of the bikes still stuck beneath the car; a man says the driver may have been his daughter.

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CiclaValley’s Zachary Rynew nearly gets impaled by someone’s pool cleaner.

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LA’s People for Mobility Justice needs your support for this year’s fundraiser.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

An English bicyclist warned other riders to stop if a car pulls up next to them traveling at the same speed, after he was pushed off his bike by a passenger in a passing car.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a 70-year old driver got two and a half years behind bars for using his car as a weapon to intentionally run down a bike rider and flee the scene — then came back to take pictures of his victim lying broken and bleeding in the street.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

English police are looking for a hit-and-run bike rider who injured a woman getting out of a car when they collided as he was riding illegally on the sidewalk.

There’s a special place in hell for a Japanese man who rode his bike up from behind a bike-riding 17-year old girl and groped her breast as he rode past, telling police he just couldn’t control his lust for her. Which should be read as a confession from a total asshole.

Police in New York are investigating an apparent hate crime, after a man on a bicycle allegedly slapped a pedestrian in the face and called him “a dirty Jew.”

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Local

South Central bike riders marked the seventh anniversary of the still-unsolved hit-and-run death of Benjamin Torres as he was riding his bike to work in Gardena. I hope whoever did it can live with the guilt of murdering another human being; I know I couldn’t.

Traditionally bike-unfriendly USC now has yellow-jacketed officers to encourage bike riders, skateboarders and scooter users to hop off before crossing the school’s Hahn Plaza, where they’re all banned.

Someone with a sense of humor offered a tongue-in-cheek response to traffic safety deniers Keep Pasadena Moving’s highly biased survey about streets and transportation in the Rose City. Thanks to Topher Mathers for forwarding today’s best laugh.

 

State

Republicans are complaining about funding from California’s recent gas tax increase going exactly where voters were told it would, with some funds going to transit and active transportation projects instead of being used strictly for road repairs.

Streetsblog says Gavin Newsom’s veto of the state’s Complete Streets bill stinks, and that Caltrans’ reasoning for fighting it is “hogwash.” Someone suggested that we should now call getting hit by driver on a Caltrans-controlled street “getting Newsomed,” just like we called a close pass “getting Jerry Browned” after he repeatedly vetoed the three-foot passing law.

Virgilio Lemus Garcia, the 60-year old victim in Sunday’s Santa Ana hit-and-run, remains in grave condition; police are looking for a dark blue mid-’90s, four-door Honda Civic with probable front end damage and a possible shattered windshield.

Caltrans unveiled plans for a bike lane paralleling I-5 through Encinitas; needless to say, some people — including one bike activist — weren’t pleased.

Apparently never having heard of induced demand, Caltrans will close San Diego’s Friars Road this weekend in preparation for adding a fourth lane in each direction, along with sidewalks and bike lanes. Hopefully, they’ll also consider how the hell pedestrians are supposed to cross that massive monstrosity.

Faux-Danish city Solvang has adopted a new bike plan; needless to say, some residents aren’t happy about it.

For once, bikes get an equal footing with cars. Even if it’s only a benefit show for a Los Gatos art museum. Thanks to Robert Leone for the link.

Sad news from San Jose, where a man died nearly three months after he and another man were hit while riding their bikes by a woman pulling out of a parking lot; the other man died at the scene. Seriously, how fast do you have to be driving to kill two people — let alone while exiting a parking lot?

It was the driver who lost his this time, after a San Jose motorist clipped a bike rider and crashed into a pole; the man on the bike was uninjured.

A San Francisco bike shop put a robot in charge of inventory so salespeople can spend more time with customers.

San Francisco’s Municipal Transportation Authority votes unanimously to ban cars from the city’s iconic Market Street. Proving that it can be done on this coast, too. Are you listening, Mayor Garcetti?

 

National

Apparently, it’s okay to be nuts for nuts. But don’t eat too many because they can cause kidney stones, as I learned the hard way.

A new survey from Lime says scooter users don’t want to ride on the sidewalks, but do it anyway because they don’t feel safe on the street. Which is exactly the same reason many bike riders do. And the answer isn’t threatening or ticketing them, it’s building more and better bike lanes.

Seriously? LifeHacker belatedly discovers CO2 cartridges and figures they’re some sort of tire-filling hack.

This is exactly what we need in Los Angeles. A Tucson bike mechanic has developed an interactive map of low-stress residential streets connected with signalized intersections. It’s easy to find relatively low-stress streets in LA; the hard part is putting together a route with traffic signals to get you across LA’s many multi-lane traffic sewers.

Denver is losing its combination cafe, bar and bike shop at the end of the month.

A Colorado woman is riding four days, 158 miles and 8,000 feet of climbing over a high mountain pass, with a man suffering from cerebral palsy in tow.

There’s a rift in Iowa’s long-running RAGBRAI ride, as the entire staff resigned to start a new, seven-day ride across the state, in anger over how the newspaper sponsoring RAGBRAI handled racist tweets by the beer sign guy who raised $3 million for a children’s hospital.

Kansas City’s mayor wants to rip out a new protected bike lane less than a month after it was installed, saying it’s made things very difficult for businesses and residents. Apparently, it must have been installed on a whim, without any studies, since he wants to remove it the same way; any change to a roadway requires time for people to adjust to it before you know how its going to work out.

That’s more like it. A Wisconsin man faces up to 15 years behind bars and another 10 years of extended supervision after accepting a plea in the DUI hit-and-run death of a bike rider.

I want to be like him when I grow up. An 89-year old White Plains NY man is back on his bike and preparing for his 20th annual 30-mile charity ride, just two years after heart surgery.

Queens bike riders complain about a terrifying, treacherous but critical route across the borough, after a man becomes just the latest bicyclist to be killed in New York; Streetsblog says if the city can’t protect a veteran rider like the man killed on Sunday, it can’t protect anyone.

A New York public advocate calls for a single unified plan to address bike lanes, homeless shelters and affordable housing, rather than uncoordinated plans for each.

Blackish star Tracee Ellis Ross is one of us, as she takes a bikeshare ride on Gotham streets in a dress and high heels.

A Philadelphia bicycle delivery worker says he stabbed a racist, road-raging driver in self-defense, after the other man threatened to “beat the black off” him, tackled him and lifted him up in the air; he faces a charge of voluntary manslaughter, a big reductio from the original charge of first-degree murder.

It’s no surprise that bicyclists are riding on Orlando, Florida walkways when there’s no safe place to ride on the streets. And no surprise the city is the nation’s most dangerous place for bike riders and pedestrians.

 

International

Wired calls the new Van Moof the ultimate ebike. Although it seems like what they really liked was the extra power from the boost button.

The London terrorist who intentionally drove at multiple bike riders, police officers and a pedestrian outside the British Parliament has been jailed for life.

An English thief got four years and three months for seriously injuring a bike rider on his way to church, while fleeing police after bungling a burglary.

The wife of an American diplomat — or maybe a spy — who claimed diplomatic immunity to flee the UK after the hit-and-run death of a young motorcyclist admits she was driving on the wrong side of the road, and wants to meet the man’s parents in New York to take responsibility for his death. But not, apparently, return to Britain to face charges.

A new British study shows a cheap, widely available drug could save hundreds of thousands of lives worldwide if given in the first few hours after a head injury; the medication, called tranexamic acid, costs the equivalent of less than $8 in the UK. Which means it will probably sell for a couple thousand dollars a dose in the US.

A woman in the UK says she overcame her crippling anxiety by learning to ride brakeless in a velodrome.

My favorite Scottish bike blogger goes riding in the City of Lights.

A pair of Afghan men rode their bikes 225 miles to call for peace in the war-torn country.

Two Indian brothers rode a tandem nearly 400 miles from Kolkata to Darjeeling, despite one having a leg crippled by polio since childhood.

 

Competitive Cycling

Legendary cyclist Eddy Merckx was in a Belgian ICU with a serious head injury he suffered in a fall while riding with friends on Sunday; the 74-year old, five-time Tour de France winner and noted bikemaker is considered by many to be the greatest rider of all time.

CyclingTips examines the cancellation of a WorldTour bike race through the gleaming towers of Hong Kong due to the protests in the troubled city. Is that enough to get this site blocked by Chinese censors, or do I have to try harder?

Bicycling says gravel is the new American road racing, while Cyclist says ‘cross may be the way to get more women into racing.

Next year’s Tour de France will feature all five of the country’s mountain ranges, as well as the shortest longest stage in Tour history.

Chris Froome could follow Greg LeMond in bouncing back from a life-threatening injury to win another Tour, especially if this year’s winner, Egan Bernal, agrees to support him in the race.

A 22-year old Australian driver has pled guilty to killing 23-year old pro cyclist Jason Lowndes while he was on training ride, after prosecutors dropped a distracted driving charge, accepting that she may have been using her phone moments prior to the crash, but not when she hit him.

 

Finally…

Fifty miles short of the goal, but still a wheelie long record. You may need your next e-scooter more than it needs you.

And it’s not a record jump if you don’t stick the landing.

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Thanks to John Hall for his generous donation to support this site, and help keep SoCal’s best bike news and advocacy coming your way (nearly) every day. 

I know I’ve said this before, but if everyone who visits this site today gave just $10, it would be enough to fund my work for a full year.

And maybe even get a new Corgi.

 

Move along, nothing to see here

My apologies.

My diabetes is kicking my ass tonight, keeping me from writing today’s post. As usual, we’ll be back on Wednesday to catch up on anything we’ve missed.

 

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