Monterey Park teen missing after riding bike, and attempted assassin’s “suspicious” bicycle ride to Trump rally

Just 162 days left until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. 

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A 15-year old girl from Monterey Park is missing, nearly a week after she disappeared while riding her bike to visit family members.

Alison Chao left her father’s home a little after 5:30 pm this past Tuesday, but never made it to her an aunt’s home in San Gabriel.

She is described as Asian, 5 feet, two inches and weighs 96 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. Chao was last seen wearing a purple t-shirt, a pair of black shorts and a pair of dark shoes, while riding a blue mountain bike and carrying a black backpack.

Anyone with information on Chao is urged to call the Monterey Park Police Department at 626/573-1311.

Photo from Monterey Park Police Dept. 

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Apparently, riding a bicycle to a political rally and leaving it propped up under a tree, is just the kind of strange behavior that should alert the cops to a potential assassin.

At least the seems to be the take at Fox News, which breathlessly reports that would-be Trump assassin Thomas Matthew Crooks was seen riding his bicycle through the recent Pennsylvania political rally where he later took a shot at the former president.

Someone spotted Crooks’ bike parked under a tree, propped up with his backpack, a full 42 minutes before the shooting — where it still stood hours later.

And that, as much as the range finder he carried, should have tipped off the police and/or Secret Service that something was amiss, according to Fox, and triggered an emergency response team.

But evidently, driving a car to the rally would have been perfectly normal.

Which is not to say that there weren’t other warning signs they should have picked up on. But simply riding a bicycle to the rally isn’t one of them.

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It’s now 214 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 37 full months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

No bias here. An Ottawa, Canada letter writer somehow feels qualified to distinguish between good bicyclists and “Bozos,” as if bad drivers don’t exist, while another blames the people on bicycles for all their near misses while driving. Because it couldn’t possibly be their fault.

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

A 25-year old British man has been convicted of murder for fatally stabbing the 29-year old driver who crashed into his mountain bike and dragged it along the roadway; he claimed the driver and his passenger were both armed and he only killed the man in self defense, but the jury didn’t buy it.

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Local 

Federal officials approved a nearly $10 million grant to help build a pedestrian and bicycle crossing over the 710 Freeway, aka Long Beach Freeway.

 

State

Sad news from Maricopa, where a 53-year old man was killed by a driver while riding his bicycle — even if the story doesn’t mention that the car even had one. A driver, that is.

The rich get richer, as San Francisco gets another protected bike lane as part of the city’s Vision Zero program, this one a quick-build project on 17th Street. Which is what happens when a city actually give a damn about living up to its commitments to people on two wheels. Unlike a certain SoCal megalopolis we could name. 

The online San Francisco Standard says “disrespect” to drivers is fueling an angry political movement aimed at reclaiming space for motor vehicles, including reversing the potential permanent closure of the city’s Great Highway.

This is who we share the road with. A 23-year old Folsom driver has been charged with attempted murder for — allegedly — intentionally ramming his SUV into a motorcyclist and running over the victim, who was lucky to escape with a broken ankle and minor injuries.

 

National

Kawai, Hawaii became the latest jurisdiction to institute a Vision Zero program, promising to end traffic fatalities by 2040. Which is probably still years before Los Angeles will manage it, if it ever does. 

A new University of Washington study shows that Seattle’s Vision Zero projects have not had a negative impact on local businesses.

In a gut-wrenching story, three people have been arrested for the crash that killed a 67-year old Texas bike rider, including the driver — just 14 years old — as well as a 40-year old man charged with child endangerment and criminally negligent homicide, and a 22-year old woman charged with giving alcohol to a minor; a ten-year old child was also a passenger in the car.

A Tennessee man with a long record of DUI and driver’s license violations faces charges for the hit-and-run that killed a 41-year old man riding a bicycle, after a pair of women initially returned to the crash scene and falsely claimed one was the driver; no decision yet on whether they will be charged for the deception.

Skip the traffic and ride a bike to Rhode Island’s famed Newport Folk Festival.

Someone is putting up fake filming notices on New York lamp poles claiming that fictional Carrie Bradshaw of And Just Like That and Sex And The City fame gets hit with a Citi Bike bikeshare; then again, they also claim she accidentally sends the equally fictional Mr. Bean a nude selfie — and confesses to being Garfield the cat.

 

International

A writer for Forbes talks with ultra-distance “living legend” Lael Wilcox as she reaches the halfway point on her ride around the world, while explaining what goes into an attempt to set a new world record for circumnavigating the globe by bicycle.

A Glasgow, Scotland writer samples the city’s new $8.4 million segregated — aka protected — bike lane, and declares it better for both bicyclists and motorists.

An eight-year old boy from Cheshire, England has been named the UK’s Cyclist of the Year for his 80-mile bike ride to all four north west Premiere League stadiums, while raising the equivalent of nearly ten grand for a new bike shelter at his school.

An estimated 1,200 people took to their bicycles in the UK to call for a Gaza ceasefire and more humanitarian aid.

The Irish Senate takes up the the case of a family’s custom made bike shed, which they threatened to replace with a low-end trailer after the local government ordered them to remove it.

LeMonde examines the boom in French bike tourism, fueled by family-focused agencies, bike-specific accommodations and the explosion in ebike use.

Condé Nast Traveler says Paris is becoming a bicycling city, for better or worse — better being the willingness of the people to take to their bikes, and worse being the city’s still deficient infrastructure.

Even bicyclists in the Netherlands have to obey the law, but face fines if they don’t.

The number of people killed riding bicycles in Germany’s Thuringia state more than doubled last year, despite investments in bike infrastructure — although the victims were “not infrequently” blamed for their own crashes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Tadej Pogačar put an exclamation point behind his third yellow jersey with his third consecutive Tour de France stage win — and sixth overall in this year’s Tour — after previously winning the race in 2020 and 2021.

London’s Independent explains why Nice — the city, not the personality type — was the perfect stand-in for Paris for the finish of the Tour de France.

A Welsh website celebrates the Manx Missile being caught on camera speaking the local tongue, after Mark Cavendish set the record for Tour stage wins in what was likely his final grand tour.

CNN celebrates Eritrean Tour de France points champ Biniam Girmay, who became the first Black African to win a stage in the Tour de France, then added two more; Girmay says he wants to inspire others as the only Black rider in this year’s peloton.

Not surprisingly, cycling teams competing in the Tour consider broadcasting their team tactics on live TV a big non-non, with two — Visma-Lease a Bike and Ineos Grenadiers — pulling out of the broadcast agreement, and others threatening to.

 

Finally..

Your next ebike could come from the Mercedes F1 team. You know traffic sucks when even race car drivers would rather ride a bike.

And when you skate on biking under the influence because the cops can’t prove you were actually riding your bike, maybe don’t let them catch you riding a unicycle right afterwards.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Ramos faces up to 20 years for killing five-year old in drunken hit-and-run, and wannabe Trump assassin was one of us

Just 165 days left until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. 

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A few people have volunteered to write guest posts to help keep this site from going dark when I’m out next month for surgery on my torn rotator cuff. 

So if you’re interested in filling in here for a few days, or joining them in submitting a guest post or two, just email me at the address on the About page above.

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Twenty years.

Charges have been refiled against Ceferino Ascencion Ramos for the alleged drunken hit-and-run that killed five-year old Jacob Ramirez, and injured his entire family, as they were enjoying an evening bike ride in Garden Grove nearly two weeks ago.

Ramos, who had a blood alcohol content of .22% at the time of his arrest, now faces a charge of vehicular manslaughter, as well as felony counts of driving under the influence of alcohol causing bodily injury, driving with blood alcohol of .08% or more causing bodily injury, and hit and run with injury, with sentencing enhancements for leaving a victim comatose or paralyzed and inflicting great bodily injury.

If he is convicted on all counts, Ramos could spend the next two decades behind bars. But the most likely result is that the DA will allow him to plead to a reduced sentence in order to guarantee a conviction.

The lack of a murder charge indicates this is probably Ramos’ first DUI arrest, or he at least hasn’t been convicted before.

The good news, if there is any in this mess, is that Jacob’s six-year-old sister has been released from the hospital after undergoing surgery for her injuries. However, the children’s father is still in a coma due to a fractured skull and bleeding in the brain.

Meanwhile, Streets Are For Everyone, aka SAFE, will install a ghost bike for Jacob Ramirez later today.

The ceremony will take place at 7:30 pm on the 12300 block of Haster Street at Twin Tree Lane in Garden Grove.

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Wannabe Trump assassin Thomas Matthew Crooks was one of us, as reports suggest he used his bicycle to scout the rally where the shooting took place last Saturday.

He then ditched his bike in full view of cops and crowds of people before climbing onto to warehouse roof and opening fire on the former president.

Which kinda raises the question of why no one noticed a man riding a bicycle while carrying a rifle at a political rally, whether it was in or out of a case.

Meanwhile, a writer for a conservative website writes, with tongue firmly planted in cheek, forget guns, it’s time to ban bicycles.

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A Seal Beach police captain answers a reader’s question to say yes, bicycles are considered vehicles under California law, subject to the same rules and regulations as drivers.

But he doesn’t get it quite right, insisting bike riders can’t use a handheld phone, even though that law specifically applies to motorists only.

And he bizarrely says bicyclists should slow and come to a complete stop at any intersection without a green light, which would mean pissing off drivers by stopping at every uncontrolled intersection.

Then again, we seem to piss off drivers if we stop for stop signs, as well as when we roll through them.

And God help you if you find yourself blocking a driver’s turn because you stopped for a red light.

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Gravel Bike California marks their 5th Anniversary by revisiting their favorite LA Area route.

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It’s now 211 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 37 full months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

The solemnity of a poignant Birmingham, England slow ride in memory of a fallen bicyclist was interrupted by angry drivers blaring on their horns over the momentary inconvenience of having to slow down to go around them. Which kinda made the bicyclist’ point for them.

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

Once again, cops and the news media conflate electric motorcycles and ebikes as if they’re the same thing, with sheriff’s deputies complaining about kids on illegal off-road electric motorcycles — not electric bicycles — terrorizing customers at an Orange County mall with air-soft guns.

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Local 

LAist reports on the health effects of chronic noise, as the US Department of Transportation says Los Angeles is one of the country’s loudest counties, thanks largely to our incessant traffic.

 

State

A writer for Forbes explains how to love living carless in California. It’s long past time stories like this lost any shock value, when up to a fifth of Angelenos don’t own cars, and seem to manage okay without one. 

A San Francisco writer asks if the city’s most harrowing bikeway is about to become a thing of the past, as a new water taxi promises to replace the narrow chasm of the Posey Tube’s bike/pedestrian sidewalk, which he describes as the “ninth circle of cycling hell.”

 

National

Strong Towns looks at ways to build a biking culture to make your city stronger.

Writing for Streetsblog, former Southland resident Melissa Balmer says it’s time to revive the 1990’s Bikes Belong campaign to help deliver needed funds for active transportation infrastructure, and stop killing people.

Planetizen says specially equipped data bikes can help government agencies better understand conditions on bike paths by collecting information on trail accessibility and pavement conditions to prioritize maintenance projects. That’s if anyone actually cares about conditions on bike paths once they’re built, let alone budget for it.

PeopleForBikes says a simple bike bus helped transform a south Tempe, Arizona neighborhood, while reconnecting students and their parents with joy.

Emergency responders were caught off guard when they found themselves in the middle of a Colorado gravel race as they responded to a bicyclist injured in a multi-rider crash, with competitors reportedly swerving in front of the ambulance. Seriously guys, give emergency vehicles a wide berth, regardless of whether you’re competing in a race or just riding to the corner market. Someone’s life could depend on it. 

Boston officials refute claims that new bike lanes and road diets are slowing ambulance response times, saying roadways are engineered to provide room for emergency vehicles, and ambulances can drive through bike lanes when necessary to get around stalled traffic.

This is the cost of traffic violence. The woman killed in a Philadelphia collision while riding her bike Wednesday night has been identified as a 30-year old medical resident specializing in pediatric cancer patients at a Philly children’s hospital.

 

International

Momentum says the health benefits of bike commuting mean it could be one of the best decisions you ever make, cutting your risk of dying from any cause nearly in half.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever tethered an 18-month old horse to an old bicycle wrapped in barbed wire in an English field, without food or water, leaving the horse emaciated and covered in lice; fortunately, it has made an “astonishing” recovery since after it was rescued five months ago.

Heavyweight boxer Derek Chisora is accused of headbutting a food delivery rider outside a London restaurant, after the victim refused Chisora’s demands that he dismount instead of riding near the fighter’s kids.

Business is booming for a British man who launched a cargo bike sandwich delivery service last month, saying he just used his bike to deliver a few ham sandwiches, and things took off from there.

 

Competitive Cycling

Thursday’s stage of the Tour de France went to former hour record holder Victor Campenaerts, who came out in front of a three man sprint to the finish, while the race leaders held back for the day.

Road.cc says Tadej Pogačar could have ridden a heavier mid-tier bicycle and still matched the time of second-place finisher Remco Evenepoel over the Galibier.

 

Finally..

That feeling when they won’t let you use the drive-thru, so you ride your bike up to the counter inside, instead. Why settle for single wheel propulsion when you can ride a two-wheel drive ebike?

And why steal one bike, when you can use a fork lift to make off with four at once?

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

OC’s San Juan Creek bike-ped path closed for construction work, and Burbank marks 20 years of Chandler Bike Path

Just 166 days left until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. 

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A few people have already volunteered to write guest posts to help keep this site from going dark when I’m out next month following my shoulder surgery.

So if you’re interested in filling in here for a few days, or joining them in submitting a guest post or two, just email me at the address on the About page above.

………

The Orange County Transportation Authority, aka OCTA, announced the closure of the San Juan Creek multi-use path starting today for construction work on a new Metrolink railroad bridge.

Here’s a press release they sent out yesterday announcing the closure. Although a little advance notice would have been nice.

San Juan Creek Bike/Pedestrian Trail to Temporarily Close as Part of Railroad Bridge Construction

The San Juan Creek Trail is scheduled to close Thursday, July 18 to Friday, Aug. 2, with intermittent closures through August; detour maps will be posted

ORANGE – The Orange County Transportation Authority, in coordination with Metrolink, continues progress in constructing a new railroad bridge over San Juan Creek in San Juan Capistrano. As part of the ongoing construction, the adjacent San Juan Creek Trail is expected to close for approximately two weeks beginning on Thursday, July 18.

Cyclists and pedestrians who use the trail are being asked to plan for the closure, follow the designated detour route or avoid the area during the closure, if possible.

During the closure, trail users will be detoured to Camino Capistrano, Del Obispo Street and the Trabuco Creek Trail. Detour signs will be in place. (See the map below for more details.)

The detour is necessary so that construction crews can remove pavement and conduct pile driving to construct the new bridge that will go over the trail. The trail is expected to reopen on Friday, Aug. 2.

However, after the scheduled closure, contractors are expected to continue working in the area, prompting intermittent trail closures through August. During that time, workers will be present to hold back trail traffic for their safety as construction equipment  is moved through the area.

OCTA appreciates the patience of trail users during this construction.

The work is being completed in partnership with Metrolink as part of a $65.6 million project to replace the existing San Juan Creek bridge, which was constructed in 1917, enhancing safety and reducing maintenance costs.

The project is being funded by Measure M, the county’s half-cent sales tax for transportation improvements, and a mix of state and federal funds.

For more information, visit octa.net/SJCBridge.

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Burbank will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the popular Chandler Bike Path next month with a free, drop-in event near the intersection of Pass and Chandler from 6 to 8 pm on August 14th.

But what do you mean they didn’t name it after Chandler Bing from Friends, which was filmed at nearby Warner Brothers Studios?

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Caltrans is hosting a pair of virtual meetings today to discuss how to improve safety on the killer highway that passes for Malibu’s main street. So if you ride, walk or drive on PCH, you owe it to yourself to join in to protect your own safety.

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People for Mobility Justice is leading a ride on Saturday to check out the coming the Slauson Ave bike/ped path.

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Police in the UK have forwarded a case for prosecution after a driver’s “ridiculously close pass” of a bicyclist that was caught on video; unlike most, if not all, of the US, video recordings are acceptable evidence for traffic violations and misdemeanors there.

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Maybe it was just a brief PR stunt, but nice to see Deadpool & Wolverine stars Ryan Reynolds, Hugh Jackman and Emma Corrin arrive on bikes for a Berlin media event.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

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It’s now 210 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 37 full months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

Someone sabotaged a Spokane, Washington mountain bike trail by spreading grease on a rock feature, causing at least one rider to slip and fall, while posting a sign alluding to buried spikes hidden along the trail and threatening to return to pour concrete over it — all because the city is expanding trails located inside a local bike park.

An Irish representative to the European Parliament says she is “totally empathic to cyclists,” while insisting that “authoritarian” bike lanes have turned Dublin “into a spaghetti junction of cycle lanes that have divided the city like East and West Berlin.” Um, sure. 

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Local 

If you need a little good news — and who doesn’t these days — Streetblog’s Joe Linton reports the new bike lanes on the east end of Hollywood Blvd are now open and rideable through the Thai Town neighborhood.

Streetsblog also says the three-mile long Vincent Community Bikeway is coming together after over a year of construction work in the unincorporated Vincent area adjacent to Covina and Irwindale.

 

State

San Diego city officials show they have a keen grasp on the issues that really matter, voting unanimously to ban loud music on pedicabs.

A Santa Barbara driver was busted for DUI Wednesday after a collision that left a bike rider with minor lacerations.

Sad news from San Joaquin County, where a man was killed riding his bike north of Riverbank when he was run down from behind by a pickup driver Wednesday morning.

Family members are asking for safety improvements to a Sacramento intersection where an 84-year old grandfather was killed riding in an unprotected bike lane last month.

Trail users are raising concerns over allowing ebikes on a new 22-mile singletrack section of multi-use trail in the Tahoe National Forest after the Forest Service concluded they would have no significant impact; the new unpaved path is part of an eventual 72-mile trail system.

 

National

Forbes says the latest active travel trend is bicycling escapes at top luxury resorts — including the Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows right here in Santa Monica.

Helmet use appears to be declining in Utah, despite an increase in bike riders getting hit by drivers; only 1.45% of bicyclists involved in crashes in the state last year were wearing helmets, down from 11.31% just five years ago.

Police in Boulder, Colorado are investigating a suspicious death after a homeless woman was found wrapped in several layers inside an “unusual” bike trailer, although they’re not saying what she was wrapped in or what was unusual about the trailer.

A lowrider bike club in Olathe, Kansas now has nine chapters across the US, including the first located inside a juvenile detention center.

Bicyclists and hikers can finally cross Vermont on a new 93-mile rail trail across the northern part of the state, after the official opening was delayed by epic flooding last year.

A woman was arrested for a killing a Florida man riding a bicycle in a hit-and-run last year, when surveillance cameras caught her driving on a Western Kentucky highway on Tuesday.

Makes sense. A Florida man plans to incorporate the 51-year old Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, aka RAGBRAI, as part of his fundraising ride on a Penny Farthing across the US to combat autism.

Port St. Lucie, Florida is just the latest East Coast city cracking down on juvenile rideouts, taking a zero-tolerance approach to the kids weaving through — and sometimes against — traffic

 

International

Road.cc says yes, bike commuting can lower your risk of early death by 47% — but only if you don’t get hit by a driver, since it also doubles your risk of serious injury.

They get it. Tijuana is repairing a pedestrian bridge used by over 10,000 people a month in the Zona Río, while adapting it for use by bicycles, as well.

“A team of four passionate cyclists” is banding together to save iconic, 80-year old British bespoke bikemaker Mercian Cycles, saying they didn’t want to see it disappear despit entering voluntary liquidation proceedings earlier this year.

A man in the UK was sentenced to life behind bars for murdering a woman by pushing her down a flight of stairs in a fight over a kid’s bike. Yet another reminder that no bicycle is worth a human life. Or life behind bars.

The European Commission may take a look at the importation of America’s massive pickups after a number of advocacy organizations raised concerns that they may be exploiting loopholes to skirt safety and environmental protection regulations.

 

Competitive Cycling

Slovenia’s Tadej Pogačar is closing in on his third Tour de France title, as he maintained a more than three-minute lead over fellow two-time winner Jonas Vingegaard.

Maybe we need a new jersey color, after Road.cc staffers announced Belgian Remco Evenepoel is the best at doing “keepie uppies.”

 

Finally..

Never led a sad separation from your husband prevent a celebrity bicycling photo opp. And that feeling when a new law banning devices to boost ebike speeds is already having a positive effect before anyone even knows about it.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Man on bike killed by pickup driver on SR-56 in San Diego’s Carmel Valley Ranch; 9th San Diego County bike death this year

A man was killed riding a bicycle in San Diego’s Carmel Mountain Ranch Wednesday morning.

Which is almost all we know right now.

Multiple sources are reporting the victim was struck by the driver of Dodge Ram pickup while crossing Interstate 15 on westbound State Route 56 around 9:25 am.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, died after being taken to a local hospital with major injuries.

The 33-year old driver remained at the scene and cooperated with investigators; there’s no word on whether drugs or alcohol played a role in the crash.

There’s also no word on how the crash occurred, though given the location, it’s likely the victim was struck with the massive truck at highway speed.

This is at least the 30th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the ninth that I’m aware of already this year in San Diego County.

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

Elderly killer of masters champ Ethan Boyes walks without jail time, and bike commuting cuts risk of early death

Just 167 days left until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. 

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Always fun getting knocked offline by a server problem, like I was yesterday. As if I don’t have enough problems already these days. 

Speaking of which, if you’re interested in filling in here for a day or two, or submitting a guest post, when I’m out next month following my shoulder surgery, just email me at the address on the About page, above.

Photo by Sora Shimazaki from Pexels.

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No surprise here.

As had been feared, the elderly driver who killed masters cycling champ Ethan Boyes walked without a day behind bars when he was sentenced on Monday.

Judge James Donato sentenced 82-year old Arnold Low to one year of home vacation confinement, followed by a year of supervised release, and a lousy $25,000 fine.

None of which represent any kind of justice for killing Boyes, while allegedly under the influence, as he rode his bike in San Francisco’s Presidio last year.

But at least his killer has pinky promised not to drive anymore. Let’s hope the DMV at least makes that official.

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In health news,

A new Scottish study shows bike commuting cut your risk of early death nearly in half, while lowering your risk of hospitalization from any cause by nearly 10%.

European Parkinson’s patients say riding a bicycle makes them feel closest to normal, almost forgetting they even have the disease.

And Bicycling somehow feels the need to lock up news of a new study showing walking can relieve back pain, as part of their members only content, even though you can find it all over the internet.

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Amazon’s annual Prime Day seems to have become the new summertime Black Friday, with everyone scrambling to find the best deals.

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Caltrans is hosting a pair of virtual meetings tomorrow to discuss how to improve safety on the killer highway that passes for Malibu’s main street.

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Streets For All is hosting a backyard fundraiser for Los Angeles CD2 City Council candidate Jillian Burgos on Saturday.

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Now this is the kind of bikeway we need on every major street.

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Join Active SGV for a ride this Saturday.

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It’s now 209 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 37 full months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

Police in Bellevue, Washington are looking for the driver of a car full of teens who deliberately swerved to the right to slam into a 13-year old boy riding a bicycle, leaving the innocent victim lying bleeding on the side of the road.

No bias here. When a British journalist asks if drivers even care that bicyclists are dying at an alarming rate, readers respond by unloading on scofflaw riders “who think they own the road and then suffer the consequences,” while calling for licensing and registration, insurance and mandatory bike helmets.

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

A Belgian bicyclist learns the hard way why you don’t go around railroad crossing barriers.

After an Aussie BMX rider was struck by a driver while running a red light, he leapt up and pounded on the car’s windows, as his BMX-riding girlfriend tried to pull open the doors.

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Local 

Friends and loved ones held an emotional memorial for Raul Castañeda, after the father of two was killed by a driver fleeing police in a stolen car in Irwindale last week while training for an upcoming event.

Velo recommends the top eight bicycling destinations by the beach, from Santa Barbara to Kyoto — and for once, Los Angeles makes the cut. Even if they mostly mean Malibu and Santa Monica. 

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James is teaming with Canyon Bicycles to launch a new venture intended to inspire a new generation of bike riders and change lives through bicycling; James also owns a small piece of the bikemaker.

Streetsblog reminds us that CicLAvia comes to the Hollywoods next month, along with the remaining CicLAvia open streets events through the end of the year.

 

State

A writer for the libertarian Cato Institute examines whether California drivers are really subsidized by the state — and concludes they are, to the tune of over $3 billion a year.

Calbike considers how Caltrans shortchanges pedestrians through its woefully incomplete Complete Streets program.

There’s an unconfirmed report on Reddit of a 70-year old woman killed while riding her adult tricycle to the grocery store in Huntington Beach on Sunday. Bearing in mind that Reddit isn’t exactly the most reliable source. Thanks to Mobility For Who for the heads-up.

Members of Santa Barbara’s State Street Advisory Committee complain about the long, drawn-out process of redesigning the city’s main street, which they say has involved three years “wasting time ‘sitting around talking about lanes and stuff.'” As if “lanes and stuff” somehow aren’t important.

Sad news from Taft, where a man riding a bicycle was killed by a passing driver.

The owner of San Francisco’s Market Street Bicycles says he’s struggling to keep from giving up, after a driver lost control doing donuts during a sideshow street takeover and slammed into the store, causing significant damage.

Community leaders in San Francisco’s Chinatown claim they were blindsided by plans for the neighborhood’s first bike lane.

 

National

Gear Patrol discusses the need for more protective helmets for ebike riders.

A Portland writer says if you really want to clean up the problems on I-84 through the city, just get rid of all the cars beleaguering it, since it’s already cleaner than any bikeway they’ve ridden.

The attorney representing one of the two teens accused of deliberating killing former Bell, California police chief Andreas Probst as he rode his bike in Las Vegas failed to get a charge of elder abuse thrown out, after unsuccessfully arguing that the law was intended to stop violence and exploitation of elderly people by caretakers, not targeting an older person with a car.

The family of murdered gravel cyclist Moriah “Mo” Wilson has filed a second lawsuit against convicted killer Kaitlin Armstrong, alleging that she drained her bank account and transferred properties to mother or sister to avoid paying $15 million in damages from the previous suit; Armstrong was convicted of fatally shooting Wilson in Austin, Texas two years ago over a perceived love triangle with professional cyclist Colin Strickland.

 

International

Pop icon Self Esteem is one of us, posting photos of the aftermath of a bloody British bikeshare crash. And no, I never heard of her, either.

The European Cyclists Federation considers the transformative power of community bike rides.

A stuntman riding a bicycle in a high wire act plunged 23 feet to his death during a Russian circus, horrifying the children in the audience.

Hats off to Bapi Debnath (Neel), who became the first Bengali bicyclist to reach the base camp on Mount Everest by bike — and just the 8th person ever.

Vietnam’s Hue City is painting a section of sidewalks green to create the county’s first sidewalk-level bike lanes. Pedestrians be damned, evidently.

 

Competitive Cycling

Mountain biker Valentin Anouilh jumped over the peloton on stage 11 of the Tour de France. But he was far than the first to do it.

L39ION of Los Angeles founder Justin Wilson says he’s riding through extreme pain after breaking his wrist in the Tulsa Tough’s Blue Dome Criterium in early June.

 

Finally..

When you’re a felon riding a bicycle while carrying illegal drugs and brass knuckles with built-in knives, maybe don’t ride salmon or tell the cop to pick up your bike, especially if it isn’t actually yours. That feeling when your 6-meter high Havana tall bike is significantly shorter than the world’s tallest rideable bike.

And I really, really hope this story about a new scenic bike route going through an “elf refuge” isn’t a typo.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Five-year old Jacob Ramirez dead following Garden Grove DUI hit-and-run; his father and sister remain in comas

I really didn’t want to write this one.

For over a week now, we’ve followed the story of the Garden Grove family who  were run down by an allegedly drunken hit-and-run driver as the parents rode their bikes, towing their children behind in child trailers.

The crash left the father and two of the kids critically injured, while the mother and their eight-month old baby were hospitalized in stable condition, and released a few days later.

However, the news about their five-year old son, Jacob Ramirez, continued to get worse; by Friday, we learned he had been declared brain dead.

Now KABC-7 is reporting that Jacob has been discontinued from life support.

The crash occurred shortly after 7:30 pm on Sunday, July 7th, on the 12300 block of Haster Street near Twin Tree Lane, when they were apparently run down from behind by Santa Ana resident Ceferino Ascencion Ramos.

Ramos fled the scene, but was arrested shortly later after he was followed by a witness to the crash.

He reportedly had a .22 blood alcohol level at the time of his arrest — nearly three times the .08 legal limit. The station reports he was on his way to buy more beer at an Anaheim liquor store when he slammed into the family.

He has been charged with felony counts of hit-and-run with permanent and serious injury, failing to stop at a hit-and-run accident with injury, and driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury, with sentencing enhancements for leaving a victim comatose or paralyzed and inflicting great bodily injury.

More charges will be pending now, including a likely murder charge if Ramos has a previous DUI on his record.

It’s also possible that the news could get worse.

The story reports that Jacob’s father, 27-year old Angel Hernandez Mejia and his seven-year old sister remain in comas over a week after the crash.

A crowdfunding campaign for the family has raised over $64,000 of the $100,000 goal, though it’s likely they’ll need a lot more than that before this is over.

This is at least the 29th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh that I’m aware of in Orange County.

It’s also worth noting that reports have indicated none of the family members were wearing bike helmets, which are legally required for children under 18.

However, there’s no way to know whether that would have been enough to prevent their injuries in this collision.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jacob Ramirez and all his family and loved ones. 

Woman critical after hit-and-run in San Diego’s Rancho Peñasquitos, and guilty plea in Tracey Gross hit-and-run death

Just 169 days left until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. 

………

I’m still looking for anyone interested in filling in here after my shoulder surgery next month, whether you’re willing to take over for a day or two a week, or simply submitting a guest post or two. 

Just email me at the address on the About page, above. 

Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay.

………

A hit-and-run driver left a 60-year old woman with life-threatening injuries in in San Diego’s Rancho Peñasquitos neighborhood Sunday morning.

The victim, who hasn’t been publicly identified, was riding her mountain bike eastbound in the 13100 block of Rancho Peñasquitos Blvd around 8:40 am, when a driver traveling in the same direction swerved into her.

Police are looking for a mid-sized, silver or charcoal gray SUV of an undetermined make. There’s no description of the driver, who was reportedly driving erratically prior to the crash.

The victim suffered injuries including bleeding in the brain, as well as a broken neck.

Anyone with information is urged to call the traffic division of the San Diego Police Department 858/495-7823; or call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 888/580-8477.

Hopefully, the victim will recover from her injuries, and they’ll find — and prosecute — the heartless coward who did it to her.

………

A 26-year old Riverside man faces sentencing in September after pleading guilty to killing an Oceanside woman.

According to the San Diego County DA’s office, Christian Joshua Howard pled guilty on Thursday to a single felony count of hit-and-run causing death, along with a misdemeanor count of destroying or concealing evidence for the March 17th collision that killed 51-year old Oceanside postal carrier Tracey Gross.

Howard reportedly dragged Gross’ bike two miles underneath his car as he fled the scene, running her down as she rode her bike home after going into work at the post office on Sunday night.

Meanwhile, a crowdfunding campaign for Gross’ family stands just $55 short of the $20,000 goal.

………

It’s now 207 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 37 full months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

A Chicago letter writer pushes back on a bicyclist’s assertion that people drive aggressively and angrily and are actively hostile to people on bicycles, arguing that from a driver’s and pedestrian’s perspective, bike riders are no different.

Yet another Conservative British city councilmember called for license plates for bicycles to put them on a level playing field with trucks, vans and cars, as if bicyclists somehow pose the same risk to others as motor vehicles; meanwhile, another Conservative councilmember complains that no one will ride a hilly bike route — yet at the same time, warns of anti-social behavior by bike riders on their way down.

A Singapore car columnist argues for bicyclists to have to pay the same road taxes as motorists, insisting that “bicycles are not ‘bigger’ than cars, but some cyclists ride like big idiots.”

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

Authorities in Montreal have installed new speed bumps — not for drivers, but to slow down people on bicycles.

Police were called when teenagers were observed riding bikes and smoking week in the aisles of a UK supermarket, searching them and obtaining “their details.”

Police in Dubai confiscated nearly 650 bicycles and e-escooters from lawbreaking bicyclists. Which sounds like a lot, until you consider it’s a country of 3.5 million people. 

………

Local 

Writing for a Santa Clarita paper, a retired LAPD motorcycle cop somehow feels the need to remind bike riders that the law applies to them, too. Funny how no one ever seems to feel the need to remind drivers about that, even though they break the law just as often, with far deadlier consequences.

Long Beach leads the way when it comes to SoCal traffic circles.

 

State

Simi Valley will get a new bike plan, after the city awarded a nearly quarter-million-dollar contract to develop a new plan, including an outreach program featuring at least three community workshops, 10 local events, and web and social media engagement. Although as we’ve learned the hard way here in Los Angeles, even the best plan is only as good as the commitment of city leaders to actually build the damn thing.

 

National

A travel website recommends ten beautiful rail trails across the US that they say you need to ride at least once. None of which are in Los Angeles. Or California, for that matter. 

The author of Seattle Bike Blog rode his ebike 30 miles to Everett, Washington to play night hockey, then rode another 30 miles back home.

A Utah man explains what he’s learned from riding the TransAmerica Bicycle Trail nearly 4,000 miles across the US to raise funds for college scholarships in the state.

A 22-year old Florida woman was killed by a Sarasota County sheriff’s deputy as she was just walking her bicycle across the street, raising the question of why the hell the cop couldn’t manage to avoid her.

 

International

Momentum offers ten ways bicycles “deliver the freedom that cars can only promise.”

A petition urging Toronto food delivery riders to obey the law has drawn less than 300 signatures in two weeks, despite being featured in the city’s main newspaper.

Lila Moss is one of us, as the model daughter of former supermodel Kate Moss went for a bikeshare ebike ride through London.

The head of English foldie-maker Brompton warns that contraction in the bike industry isn’t over, predicting that more bicycle businesses will go belly up this winter.

Velo says famed British designer Paul Smilth has the biggest, best and most extensive collection of bicycle memorabilia you’ll ever see.

Bicyclists in the UK are less satisfied with bike lane design and maintenance, feel less safe, and face more barriers to riding than bicyclists in the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden and Germany.

A 26-year old British woman will spend a well-deserved eight years and eight months behind bars for the drunken and stoned hit-and-run that killed a 40-year old bike rider

The best bike routes for your next trip to Andalucía, Spain.

Kim Kardashian is one of us, going for a nearly naked, lightless bikini-clad ride after a nighttime swim in Puglia, Italy.

A writer for The Guardian describes how he found his bliss bicycling along the coast of Estonia. Raise your hand if you didn’t even know Estonia had a coast

An Aussie bicycle advocacy group looks to tax receipts from San Francisco’s Valencia Street to argue that bike lanes don’t have a negative effect on local businesses.

 

Competitive Cycling

Two-time Tour de France champ Tadej Pogačar won his second consecutive stage on Sunday over fellow two-time winner Jonas Vingegaard; Pogačar enters today’s rest day with a three minute, nine second lead over his chief rival.

The New York Times says forget the rest of the peloton, the Tour de France is down to a two-man race between Pogačar and Vingegaard, between them winners of the past four Tours.

Slovenia’s Primož Roglič is out of the Tour de France after crashing hard and losing time in stage 12.

Covid is taking a toll in the race, with several riders dropping out, while Geraint Thomas is continuing to race despite the illness, and members of the press face a mask mandate.

The pro cyclists union plans to take legal action against a “fan” who assaulted the race leaders — with potato chips.

An Egyptian cyclist was kicked off the country’s Olympic team following uproar over her selection, despite knocking a competitor off her bike in a sprint.

 

Finally…

Why just ride a bike when you can pedal a canoe across Scotland? Who needs tires when your bike can wear slippers?

And you can see a lot of things riding a bike — like a Patagonian rodent as big as a medium-sized dog, thousands of miles from its normal South American range.

https://www.tiktok.com/@accuweather/video/7388563615881661727?embed_source=121374463%2C121442748%2C121439635%2C121433650%2C121404359%2C121351166%2C121331973%2C120811592%2C120810756%3Bnull%3Bembed_blank&refer=embed&referer_url=www.msn.com%2Fen-us%2Flifestyle%2Fpets%2Fcolorado-resident-out-on-a-bike-ride-stumbles-across-a-rodent-native-to-south-america%2Far-BB1pXIhm&referer_video_id=7388563615881661727

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

5-year old hit-and-run victim declared brain dead, Burbank law firm’s bike giveaway, and speed cams coming to Long Beach

Just 172 days left until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. 

………

Truly heartbreaking news, as the five-year old boy critically injured in a Garden Grove hit-and-run isn’t going to make it.

KNBC-4 is reporting that doctors have declared little Jacob Ramirez brain dead, but his mother asked for another day before she has to let him go.

Jacob was injured when 29-year old Ceferino Ramos allegedly plowed into the family on Sunday as Jacob’s mother and father were riding their bikes, towing their three young children behind in child trailers.

The entire family was initially hospitalized, with Jacob, his father and six-year old sister critically injured, while his mother and eight-month old sister were released the next day.

Let’s just hope his parents donate Jacob’s organs so something good can come from this nightmare.

Meanwhile, Ramos was arrested after being followed by a witness to the crash, after which he had a .22 blood alcohol level — nearly three times the legal limit.

He faces charges that including DUI causing bodily injury and hit-and-run with permanent injury or death; however, if he has a previous DUI on his record, that will likely be upgraded to murder sometime after Jacob is declared dead on Friday.

Photo from Ramirez Family GoFundMe page.

………

A Burbank lawyer is giving away ten bicycles to “deserving” kids this summer, and looking for nominations.

The Law Offices of Adrianos Facchetti is hosting their 3rd annual bike giveaway, and looking for kids who live within ten mile of the accident attorney’s office at 4444 W Riverside Dr #308 in Burbank.

Do you know a special child aged 6 to 17 who goes above and beyond to do something nice for someone else? Or who positively impacts their siblings, classmates, or community? We want to reward these exceptional kids with a brand-new bike, helmet and t-shirt! Nominate a child who you believe deserves this special recognition. Share their story and let us know why they stand out.

Nominate a Child

Winners will be announced on July 26th, so you have about two weeks to get your noms in.

………

Long Beach is working to improve safety by installing speed cams as part of a pilot program, with revenue going to first pay for the program, then be used for traffic-calming measures at the affected sites.

Los Angeles and Glendale were also approved for the program by the state in Southern California, along with three NorCal cities.

A bill to permit them on deadly PCH in Malibu continues to move forward in the state legislature.

………

Those new bike lanes on Hollywood Blvd are looking pretty good.

Although the tents on the sidewalk remind you it’s still, you know, Hollywood.

………

Metro is extending their mobility wallet program, and looking for new applicants.

………

Bike Talk is getting pretty high level guests these days, including one of America’s most respected bike scribes, along with one of the country’s leading traffic safety advocates.

………

It’s now 204 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 37 full months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

A Portland driver somehow got onto a fully separated and protected bike path alongside the I-5 Freeway, using it as their own personal speedway.

Seriously? Someone in Louisville KY called the cops on an eight-year old kid for riding her bike on the street.

No bias here. A local Conservative leader in the UK calls people who support bike lanes the “active travel Taliban.”

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

A woman crossing the street near New York’s Central Park was struck by a bikeshare rider who allegedly ran the red light; witnesses said she must be from out of town because locals know red lights are meaningless in the city.

………

Local 

Los Angeles considers a bold plan to close Wilshire Blvd through MacArthur Park in an effort to reconnect the bifurcated park; the city is ordering a $2.5 million study to decide what we already know — cars don’t belong in parks.

This is who we share the road with, part one. Former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist Josh Klinghoffer is being sued for wrongful death after killing a pedestrian who was crossing in an Alhambra crosswalk while Klinghoffer was allegedly driving distracted earlier this year.

Mark your calendar for the return of CicLAvia to the Hollywoods, East and West, in another five short weeks.

 

State

Calbike says SB 960, the Complete Streets Bill, has passed out of the Assembly Transportation Committee by a wide margin, but in a weaker form than before it was amended.

Calbike also offers an update on all the active transportation bills still alive in this year’s legislative session. Thanks to Oceanside bike lawyer and BikinginLA sponsor Richard Duquette for the heads-up.

The California Transportation Commission will hold a public workshop next Wednesday to discuss plans for the next round of Active Transportation funding, which was cut by two-thirds to just $200 million this year.

The Orange County Register has more on the 58-year old Irvine man who was arrested on suspicion of felony vehicular manslaughter and driving while stoned following the death of a man riding a bicycle in Newport Beach two years ago. No word on what the hell took them so long, however. 

This is who we share the road with, part two. A longtime Ontario city counselor has been arrested for hit-and-run and DUI; Jim Bowman has been on and off the Ontario city council for the last 40 decades. Apparently they don’t have effective term limits there. Or someone to take away his keys. 

Some questions just answer themselves. Streets For All founder Michael Schneider asks if the Coachella Valley is too car centric in a Palm Springs op-ed.

Good question. SF Gate wants to know why the streets of San Francisco are still dangerous, ten years after the city adopted Vision Zero. Then again, Los Angeles is only one year behind them in our epic Vision Zero fail.

A San Francisco fitness influencer who works for Apple in Cupertino says he loves his 50-mile, three-hour bike commute to work, even if other people think it’s crazy.

San Francisco merchants get out the torches and pitchforks after learning the city’s nearly finalized bike network plan could result in the loss of “a lot” of parking. Because as we all know, people on bicycles never buy anything, right?

A Berkeley website remembers longtime bicyclist Howard Sutherland, who literally wrote the book on bicycle repair. The site reports Sutherland died peacefully in his sleep; he was 75.

 

National

Gear Junkie says buy your new ebike now, because Biden’s new China tariffs are already raising prices. To which California’s ebike rebate program says…nothing. 

A Las Vegas writer escapes the broiling heat for a bike ride along the Oregon coast.

In a story that sounds like it could have come from Los Angeles, a Chicago program to ticket drivers who park in bike lanes still hasn’t gotten off the ground after 16 months.

Police are looking for an Indianapolis man who offered to mow a woman’s lawn, then made off with her lawnmower and bicycle.

The mayor of Parsippany, New Jersey vowed to improve safety after an eight-year old boy was killed in a collision while riding his bike this week. Just a tad late. But still. 

 

International

Momentum says prioritizing bicycles can save cities money and boost local economies, and also rates the year’s top ten “coolest summer bikes.” Although what makes something a summer bike, as opposed to spring or fall, I have no idea.

No surprise here. Luxury Travel magazine rates the best countries for bicycling, none of which are in North America.

Public bikeshare is making big gains in Canada, with double-digit growth in cities across the country.

An Ottawa, Canada website warns that the city has work to do, as pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists remain at risk from drivers.

In a surprising outcome, an Oxford, England bike rider was acquitted on a charge of causing bodily harm by wanton or furious driving — yes, driving — for a pathway collision that resulted in the death of an 81-year old woman, after crashing into her with his bicycle: a witness was criticized for bias by prosecutors for testifying that the victim fell, rather than being knocked over.

Dutch ebike maker Cowboy pulled its new augmented reality ebike racing game after complaints from government officials, including the mayor of Amsterdam, for encouraging riders to race one another on the country’s streets.

German researchers call for more separated and well-built bike lanes to reduce the number of bicycling collisions in the country, where four bike riders are killed and 50 seriously injured each week.

Thor is one of us, as Chris Hemsworth goes for a leisurely bike ride with his wife and kids in Barcelona.

That’s more like it. A British man was sentenced to 22 years behind bars for intentionally ramming a man riding a bicycle in Cyprus with his car, after fighting with him outside a nightclub.

A South African website explores the world’s most bicycle-friendly travel destinations. None of which are Los Angeles.

 

Competitive Cycling

Two-time Tour de France champ Jonas Vingegaard won Wednesday’s stage 11, outsprinting Tadej Pogačar despite getting dropped earlier in the race. Read the first link on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you. 

Just days after becoming the first Black African to win a stage in the Tour de France, Biniam Girmay won his third stage in a mass sprint at the end of Thursday’s stage 12; Tadej Pogačar continued to lead the general classification by 1 minute 6 seconds over Remco Evenepoel, with Vingegaard in third by eight seconds.

Newly crowned Tour stage win record holder Mark Cavendish was relegated following a mass sprint at the end of stage 12, in what could be one of the final sprints of his storied career.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole 11 Enve bikes worth more than $167,000 from the TotalEnergies cycling team at the Tour de France, including the main bike ridden by stage 9 winner Anthony Turgis.

Egyptians are angry after a 19-year old woman was selected for the country’s Olympic team despite swerving into a competitor and knocking her into a cement barrier; she was chosen even though she had received a one-year ban from the Egyptian Cycling Federation as a result.

SoCal’s “most prestigious cycling event” takes place this weekend with the return of the 61st Annual Chevron Manhattan Beach Grand Prix on Sunday.

Escape Collective considers the “weird and wonderful world of American bike racing.”

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can ride the legendary Alpe d’Huez without breaking a sweat. There are many accepted uses for a bicycle, but throwing one at a passing woman isn’t one of them.

And maybe if you wear this, they might get the point.

Or not.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Man riding bicycle killed by suspected car thief in Irwindale crash, collateral damage in police chase

Collateral damage.

A man is dead because a suspected car thief fled from police in Iwindale, slamming into the victim as he rode his bike, even after the cops wisely gave up the chase.

You know, just another “oopsie.”

The victim was riding near Arrow Highway and Rivergrade Road shortly after 8:30 pm yesterday when he was struck by the fleeing driver.

He died at the scene.

He was identified as 50-year old San Gabriel resident Raul Castaneda.

Police arrested 29-year old Hanford, California resident Jonathon Del Carmen Calixto on suspicion of murder, among other charges.

The indent began when police in El Monte received a report of someone stealing a vehicle from Longo Toyota on Peck Road. They began to chase the suspect, but called it off after about a minute.

Calixto continued to flee, apparently at high speed, before crashing into the victim less than six miles away.

He was arrested while attempting to escape on foot after abandoning the vehicle some distance away.

There’s no way to know if the victim would be alive today if police had simply attempted to track the vehicle from the start, rather than initiating a dangerous chase.

But it might be worth trying next time.

This is at least the 28th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eighth that I’m aware of already this year in Los Angeles County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Raul Castaneda and all his loved ones.

Garden Grove mom fears for gravely injured 5-year old hit-and-run victim, and Caltrans discusses PCH safety feasibility

Just 174 days left until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. 

………

My apologies, again. 

On top of everything else I’ve been dealing with lately, I’ve had a major flare-up in my diabetic neuropathy, which knocked me on my ass Monday night. Or maybe it was just everything I took trying to control it. 

Also, let me know if you’re interested in filling in for me when I’m out of commission next month, whether you’d like to pen a single post, or take over this site a day or two.

Anything goes, as long as it’s related to bicycles or traffic safety. 

Just email me at the address on the About page if you’re interested in volunteering. 

And thanks to tomexploresla for today’s graphics.

………

Graphic by tomexploresla

The news from Garden Grove is getting worse.

On Monday, we discussed the allegedly drunken hit-and-run that took out an entire family in Garden Grove Sunday evening, as the parents were towing their children in child seats and bike trailers.

The crash left the father and two kids critically injured, while hospitalizing the mom and her eight-month old baby.

Now the mother is reporting that, while the father and one child are showing some signs of improvement, their five-year old son, Jacob Ramirez, suffered significant brain damage in the crash, and may not survive his injuries.

A witness followed the driver as he attempted to flee, and police arrested the driver, identified as 29-year-old Santa Ana resident Ceferino Ramos.

A crowdfunding campaign for the family has raised nearly $33,000 of the $100,000 goal.

Although there are also reports that someone created a fake crowdfunding page in the family’s name, demonstrating once again that there are no limits to just how low some people will go to scam others.

………

Caltrans is hosting a series of public meetings, starting tomorrow, to discuss the feasibility of improving safety on deadly PCH through Malibu.

Although the only thing that will really improve safety would be converting the highway into a slow-speed Main Street designed to serve the local community and all road users, rather than pass-through commuters.

………

San Diego announced the official opening of the re-imagined Pershing Drive, transforming the previous car sewer into a tamed street with a fully separated, two-way bikeway stretching from North Park to Downtown.

The street was an auto-centric hellhole when I lived down there four decades ago. And something tells me it didn’t get any better since. So this should be a huge improvement.

Meanwhile, the two-year old closure of popular two-lane shortcut Bachman Place will extend for yet another year, before eventually reopening with “bikeway enhancements” connecting the Mission Valley and Hillcrest neighborhoods.

………

Streets For All is urging you to attend one of a series of public meetings, including today in Pico Rivera and tomorrow in El Monte, to tell Caltrans to stop flushing our hard-earned tax money down the toilet, and cancel induced demand-inducing plans to widen the 605 Freeway.

It’s long past time to drive a stake through this proposal that somehow keeps rising from the dead, and spend the money on transit, bike and pedestrian projects, instead.

………

Megan Lynch forwards video of a woman harassing a New York food delivery rider for the crime of wearing a Palestinian keffiyeh around his neck, calling him a terrorist and blocking his bike with her car.

………

It’s now 202 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 37 full months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

Meanwhile, Santa Monica is accepting applications for approximately 90 vouchers worth up to $2,000 toward the purchase of ebikes or bicycles, along with safety equipment including helmets, locks and lights for income-qualified residents.

And Salt Lake City has launched their own program, providing up to $1,300 off the purchase of a new ebike, depending on the model and the buyer’s income level.

………

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

That’s more like it. Pennsylvania prosecutors have thrown the book at a road-raging 57-year old Mechanicsburg PA man who deliberately rammed a bike rider and tried to run them off the road, charging him with attempted aggravated assault by vehicle, recklessly endangering another person, terroristic threats and other offenses.

Anti-bike agitators are spreading “factually incorrect and negative” rumors suggesting trees will be chopped down to make room for what will eventually be the UK’s biggest bike lane.

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

A 55-year old man in Oxford, England is on trial for “wantonly or furiously” bicycling for killing an 81-year old woman, who died in the hospital days after they collided on a pathway.

Bike riders in Bournemouth, England are coming under criticism for riding recklessly and weaving around pedestrians on a beachfront pathway.

More bad behavior in Wales, where young bicyclists are accused of causing serious damage to a nature preserve by building their own cycle track and mountain bike jumps.

There’s even bad behavior from the Tour de France, where Belgian cyclist Victor Campenaerts was observed peeing into an empty water bottle, and throwing the piss-filled bottle into a field.

………

Local 

Streetsblog reports city officials are beginning planning work on closing Wilshire Blvd between Alvarado and Carondelet Streets to reconnect the two sides of severed MacArthur Park. While they’re at it, why don’t they just close the whole damn thing from the Pacific to DTLA?

The author of Bike Seattle received an epiphany on a visit to Long Beach, when he realized Seattle could use bikeshare docks to daylight intersection, like Long Beach’s “wonderful” legacy bikeshare system.

 

State

A Santa Barbara writer says something has to be done about young ebike riders throughout the city, complaining that juvenile riders don’t have the training to operated motorized bicycles. Although as we’ve discussed lately, it’s not clear if he’s talking about teens riding ped-assist bicycles, or throttle-controlled electric motorbikes.

Caltrans will install seven miles of new bike lanes on Palo Alto’s El Camino Real. Now someone tell them to do PCH next.

San Francisco residents got out the torches and pitchforks at a community meeting to discuss a proposed bike network in the North Beach neighborhood, fearing it could be another Valencia Street.

A San Francisco website suggests what while doorings are down in the city, a recent death highlights a neighborhood divide, as safety improvements have skipped some areas populated by people of color.

 

National

Forbes vets the best electric foldies.

Bicycling suggests that bikemakers should offer more lightweight bikes for heavyweight riders who outweigh pro cyclists. Unfortunately, this one doesn’t seem to be available anywhere else, so you’re on your own if the magazine blocks you. 

A Denver TV station is raising funds for a makeover of a young boy’s room for when he gets out of the hospital after crushing his voice box when he crashed his bicycle.

Michigan’s carfree Mackinac Island will finally get its first speed limit — for bicycles and ebikes.

Police in Troy, New York have some ‘splaining to do, after a man they were chasing drowned in the Hudson River while attempting to flee on his bicycle.

A New Jersey woman faces charges for the drunken crash that killed a 44-year old man when she slammed into his bike while driving on the shoulder of the roadway to pass another car on the right, with her three-year old in the back of the car.

The family of a 65-year old Louisiana man want answers after he was killed in a collision with an off-duty sheriff’s deputy while riding his bicycle at 1:30 am, in a strange neighborhood 20 miles from home — and want to know why he was supposedly riding in the roadway when there was a freshly paved, fully separated bike path right next to it.

 

International

An automotive website examines which carmakers have also made bicycles, like a mid-2000s “Hummer” foldie, for instance.

Cycling Weekly considers whether tossing the booze will make you a better bicyclist.

Velo reports on their favorite bicycles from the recent Eurobike trade show, including a seriously weird gravel bike.

Toronto bicyclists are getting a new protected bike lane on one of the city’s deadliest corridors.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole eight bicycles worth the equivalent of over $33,000 from a Salisbury, England gravel fest.

This is who we share the road with. A British man will spend 17 years behind bars for killing a baby and her aunt when he slammed into their car, minutes after posting a photo showing himself driving 141 mph with a blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit; he’ll also face a well-deserved 21-year driving ban once he’s released.

An English website says Bremen, Germany ranks as one of the world’s best cities for bicycling, thanks to visionary leaders who invented the bike lane in the 1970s. Except to quote Gershwin, it ain’t necessarily so.

Berlin is testing a new cycle track built beneath an overhead subway to accommodate future growth. But aren’t subways supposed to be underground?

 

Competitive Cycling

Russia’s Aleksandr Vaslov is out of the Tour de France after breaking his ankle when he veered off the road near the end on Sunday’s stage — shattering his bike in the process — yet somehow finished the stage anyway, despite being clearly disoriented.

Good news from Provo, Utah, where surgeons successfully reattached the right arm of California-based cyclist Ryan Jastrab, after he virtually severed it near the shoulder by catching a metal barricade as he was rounding one of the final turns on the last lap of the Salt Lake Criterium.

Bicycling reports the popular Life Time Crusher in the Tushar gravel race has been cancelled for this year due to wildfires in Utah. This time, you can read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

 

Finally…

You can carry just about anything on a bicycle — even 34 pounds of purloined barbecued brisket. Why settle for a cellphone mount when you can mount a ham radio on it, instead?

And that feeling when the mountain lion that attacked you while you were riding was actually just someone’s angry kitty.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin