Morning Links: Daily News spins bike news badly, not getting it San Pedro, and a local bike rider needs your help

Fund-Drive-With-Type-2Sometimes, good news is bad news, depending on how you spin it.

The LA Daily News looks at the LA city council’s re-adoption of the new Mobility Plan last week, and the promise to consider proposed amendments after the first of the year.

Except they give it a very negative spin.

The story focuses on the possibility that bike lanes could be removed from the plan, likely or not. Along opposition to the plan from Councilmembers Paul Koretz and, disappointingly, David Ryu.

Koretz focuses his opposition to removing bike lanes planned for Westwood Blvd in and near Westwood Village, just outside the UCLA campus, claiming it’s too dangerous for bike riders. Yet somehow, refuses to consider any plans to make it safer or propose any viable alternative.

His only solution is to keep it dangerous, while his search for a long-promised alternative route is seeming more and more like OJ’s search for the real killer.

Meanwhile Ryu, who promised to reconsider the decisions made by his predecessor Tom LaBonge, instead appears to be following in his anti-bike footsteps.

Writing for Orange 20 Bikes, Richard Risemberg says at least the city isn’t stabbing us in the back anymore.

They’re aiming their knives directly at us.


Apparently, parking causes less congestion than bike lanes.

A San Pedro letter writer complains that replacing parking spaces with bike lanes on Western Avenue would increase congestion and make it harder for emergency vehicles to get through.

Which seems highly unlikely, unless cars are currently able to pass through parked vehicles, which would appear to violate the laws of physics. And emergency vehicles usually find it easier to drive through bike lanes than parked cars.

He also complains that the Measure R funds that would be used to pay for the lanes weren’t supposed to be used for bike lanes, suggesting they should instead be funded by supporters of Calbike and CABO, neither of whom had anything whatsoever to do with them. And that funds should be raised by registering and taxing bicyclists, and imposing fines on law-breaking cyclists.

The first of which is impractical for many reasons, and the latter already happens, despite his protestations. And those fines go to the state, just like the fines paid by scofflaw drivers.

Never mind that bike riders already pay more than their share for the roads we ride.

Then again, that letter has nothing on this absurdly auto-centric writer from Santa Barbara.

Thanks to Margaret for the heads-up.


If you’re looking for a good cause this holiday season, you can’t do much better than World Bicycle Relief, which is using donated bicycles to change lives in less developed countries.


Another good cause a lot closer to home.

Popular cyclist Egee Mabolis was badly injured during the monthly Ride With No Name, leaving him with no feeling in his arms and legs. A gofundme account established to help cover his medical costs has raised nearly $11,000 of the $25,000 goal — even though that won’t begin to cover the cost of his hospital care and rehabilitation, since he doesn’t have insurance.

If the name sounds familiar, it may be because Mabolis was profiled by the LA Weekly last year for his work taming the notorious Trader Joe’s parking lot in Silver Lake.


Film fans take note.

The first film from famed British director Ridley Scott, the auteur responsible for Alien, Blade Runner and Gladiator, was about a boy and bicycle, starring his late brother and future Top Gun director Tony.

The 27-minute student film is now available online.

While we’re on the subject of films, a writer for the Daily Beast kind of misses the point of the new documentary Bikes vs. Cars, which doesn’t really call for replacing all cars with bicycles, as tempting as that may seem at times.

If you want to see for yourself, Bikes vs. Cars opens this Friday at the Laemmle NoHo 7 in North Hollywood.



CicLAvia staffer and LADOT commissioner Tafarai Bayne discusses what it’s like to grow up carless in LA and the perils of biking while black.

A cyclist in his 40s suffered moderate injuries when he was hit by a sheriff’s deputy in Carson Thursday night.

Just one problem with LA’s 2024 Olympic bid: The BMX and mountain biking events projected for Griffith Park could be illegal.

Evidently, people really do walk in LA and Pasadena. And ride bikes, too.



An Escondido cyclist suffered life-threatening injuries when she was the victim of a hit-and-run Saturday night; police are looking for the driver of a black Toyota Corolla.

A local hiking group voices their support for the planned 50-mile CV Link bike and pedestrian pathway around the Coachella Valley.

San Francisco follows an all-too-familiar pattern of fixing dangerous streets only after it’s too late. But at least they fix them, unlike some LA council districts we could name.

A transportation expert from UC Davis will make a presentation at this week’s Paris climate change conference touting the benefits of bicycling as a climate-friendly measure.

Family members and witnesses question the CHP’s investigation of a cyclist killed by a Sacramento judge, leading them to wonder if it’s just sloppy work or a cover-up.



America may not have hit peak car after all. Or maybe it did.

HuffPo says bikeshare is having a positive impact on city life throughout the US.

Life is cheap in Portland, where a truck driver faces a maximum $260 fine for dangerous left turn that took the life of a bike rider.

A Detroit man raised $15,000 to buy a new car for a man who rode a bike to work every day to save money to care for his sick wife.

The bike-hating New York Post blames scofflaw cyclists for the 4,463 bicyclists injured in the city last year, not the people in the big dangerous machines. And insists an Idaho stop law will only make things worse.



England’s last Plantagenet king is helping to lead the reclamation of Leicester from automobiles, over 500 years after Richard III famously failed to trade his kingdom for a horse.

British bike thieves get 12 years apiece for stabbing a man who was trying to reclaim his stolen bike.

Police in an English town are on the lookout for a cyclist — to thank her for lending them her hi-viz jacket so they could direct traffic.

A British man rides 400 miles to honor his late bike-riding mother.

Brit riders hold their third annual die-in to call for a stop to killing cyclists.

Caught on video: Apparently, being pregnant and wearing glasses is the latest excuse for left-hooking a British cyclist.

An injured cyclist says Maltese authorities are always on the driver’s side, concluding that his recent collision somehow broke the laws of physics.

Vogue says stylish cyclists are taking over Moscow.

Selling bikes by Bollywood.

A gold medal-winning Thai-American BMX rider is just as happy working in the rice paddy as competing against Asia’s best. No, really, that’s what it says.



The beauty of a bicycle is its simplicity, until designers get their hands on it. Why clutter your home with bikes when you can park them on the ceiling? Evidently, the color of his bike is enough to make a man a suspect in the UK — accurately, as it turned out.

And shirtless cyclist and actor Russell Crowe goes riding with his mates in the “middle of f**king nowhere.”


A brief expression of gratitude, on a day for giving thanks

Fund-Drive-With-Type-2Let me take a moment, on this day set aside for giving thanks, to express my deep gratitude for those who make this site possible.

Especially our sponsors, bike attorneys Jim Pocrass of Pocrass & De Los Reyes, and Los Angeles Bicycle Attorney Josh Cohen.

And to everyone who has contributed out of their own pockets, far too many to thank here individually; your generosity means more to me than I can ever express.

I am grateful, too, for everyone who has contributed a guest post, forwarded a link or commented on here, for helping to keep the conversation going.

But most of all, I am thankful for the readers of this site. Without you, these would just be meaningless words lost in the ether of cyberspace.

It’s your readership that keeps this site going.

Thank you.


Morning Links: A little pre-turkey safety advice, wishing Seth a speedy return, and British Lords go bike batty

Fund-Drive-With-Type-2Just a quick note before we get started.

Today is the busiest travel day of the year, and not just in the skies. Starting this afternoon, the streets will be filled with crazed drivers trying to fight their way out of town, or rushing to get the last of their pre-holiday errands out of the way.

So be careful out there.

That doesn’t mean stay home, or bundle yourself in your car and leave your bike behind.

It does mean use extra caution and ride defensively, positioning yourself to be seen yet still assuming that no one will, and preparing yourself to react when some driver does exactly the wrong thing at exactly the wrong time.

Because chances are, someone will.

And that goes double for Black Friday.


Best wishes to Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson, who got a ride to the hospital after taking a spill last week, but clearly kept his sense of humor intact. He blames the new mismatched tires, though sabotage from the Trump camp can’t be ruled out.


Let’s take a quick peer at Great Britain’s peerage.

England’s Lord Sugar is a big supporter of dedicated cycle paths, except when they happen to inconvenience him. And is given a high-end Union Jack Pinarello racing bike co-engineered by Jaguar to smooth out the bumps in the road, lest they bruise the noble bum.

Meanwhile, another Lord — who happens to be the UK’s Under Secretary of State for Transport — says with a straight face that cyclists pose a greater danger to commuters than cars and trucks; bike scribe and historian Carlton Reid points out he’s just slightly off base.



LA County has approved a redevelopment of Marina del Rey’s Pier 44 along Admiralty Way, including improvements to the Marina bike path; 18% of the project’s parking spaces will be reserved for bicycles.

CiclaValley goes back to San Francisco’s East Bay.



A section of Orange County’s Quail Hill Trail has been renamed in honor of Irvine bike advocate Juanita Moe.

An OC bike activist says it’s time to get rolling on safe streets in the aftermath of the county’s recent Active Transportation Forum at UC Irvine.

As long as Caltrans has to replace a couple of Carpinteria overpasses, they plan to widen them to include bike lanes and sidewalks in both directions.

A writer for Wired says San Francisco’s new raised bike lanes won’t keep bicyclists safe, and says what we really need is something like the largely ridiculed British plan to build elevated limited access bikeways over train lines. Never mind that it would force riders into industrial areas, and prevent them from having access to the local market, or anything else anyone would actually want to ride to. But other than that, it’s brilliant, right?

A Chico bike thief gets six months for stealing a bait bike.



A new bill in Congress would allow bikeshare commuters to use a pre-tax transit benefit to pay for their memberships and user fees.

A Minnesota county plans to install rumble strips on county roads that have significant bike and pedestrian traffic, even though they’re opposed by cyclists and have been removed elsewhere in the state.

Cleveland will be getting a second bikeshare program, provided by the company behind Santa Monica’s Breeze bikeshare, just in time for next year’s Republican National Convention.

A New York councilmember calls for an Idaho stop law in the city, saying it doesn’t make sense to treat vehicles and bikes the same way; needless to say, the Post calls it “extreme,” saying it would allow riders to blow through red lights. They’re right, if coming to a full stop at red lights and proceeding only when it’s safe can be called blowing through.

For a change, New York neighborhood groups say a proposed street overhaul isn’t bold enough, and actually call for the removal of a traffic lane to make room for bike lanes and other improvements.

Redesigning New York’s streets to provide dedicated space for bikes has resulted in a remarkable 72% decrease in the risk of serious cycling injuries.



A women’s cycling website profiles ten inspiring women who are doing awesome things for the development of women’s cycling.

A new backpack includes what may be the world’s largest bicycle taillight.

Former British cycling champ Chris Boardman says the UK’s cycling revolution won’t take off without proper funding. Which goes for this country, as well.

A road raging Brit driver gets a year behind bars for pushing a 74-year old man off his bike, resulting in a broken leg, because he couldn’t tell a wave to go around from an obscene gesture.

A British writer questions why the focus is on what women bike riders wear instead of improving safety and encouraging more women to ride.

Busy night. A teenage Belfast bike rider gets community service after shouting a cheer for the IRA when police try to stop him for reckless riding, then sparks a 50-person fight.

Pro cyclist Guillaume Bonnafond wears a facemask to ride one of cycling’s most famous climbs to call attention to the problems of Chronic Pulmonary Lung Disorder (COPD).

No irony here. A prominent Kiwi architect who designs bikeways somehow avoids prison for dragging a cyclist under his Porsche; he claimed he thought he hit a traffic cone and kept going in an attempt to dislodge it. Because the best way to get anything out from under an expensive sports car is to drag it beneath the undercarriage, rather than stop to see what the hell you hit, right?

A trio of Nepalese cyclists have reached Myanmar on a world tour to promote HIV/AIDS awareness.

Over half of Singaporeans say they’re willing to share foot paths and road space with bicyclists.



Once again, repeat after me: If you’re carrying meth on your bike, put a damn light on it — and don’t tell the cops to meet you at a someone’s apartment when they try to stop you.

And caught on video: Amsterdam wins the 2015 European Bike Stealing Championships with a time of just under 23 minutes.


Morning Links: LAPD still looking for hit-and-run cyclist, and a bike rider critically injured in SoLA hit-and-run

The hunt is still on for the bicyclist who left the scene after colliding with an elderly man on Glendale Blvd last month.

That’s the gist of the following email I received from LAPD Det. Felix Padilla on Monday.

On October 15, 2015, around 8:20 am, Levon Avetisyan, 77 years old and a resident of Los Angeles, was crossing Glendale Blvd just north of 1st Street when he was struck by a bicyclist riding northbound on Glendale Blvd.  Mr. Avetisyan suffered severe head trauma and was taken to LAC+USC Medical Center by paramedics from LAFD.  He was later transported to Kaiser Permanente Medical Center.  Despite lifesaving efforts, Mr. Avetisyan succumbed to his injuries on November 1, 2015. The unknown bicyclist left the area before he was identified by police.  The investigation is being conducted as a hit and run, however, I believe the bicyclist had no other option other than to leave once the scene was cleared by the paramedics.

The bicyclist was described as a male, White, in his 40’s and was attired with a cycling jersey and shorts. Anyone with information concerning the bicyclist is asked to contact the LAPD Central Traffic Division Detectives at (213) 833-3713 or Central Traffic Division Watch Commander at (213) 833-3746.  During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (877-527-3247).

Padilla notes that the collision appears to be an unfortunate accident, and the rider involved is not likely to face charges.

However, the police still need to talk to him, and the family of the victim is asking the bicyclist involved to come forward.

So if you’re the rider in question, contact the police. Or if you know who it was, urge him to come forward so this case can be resolved, and Avetisyan’s family get the peace and closure they need.

It’s the right thing to do.


Yet another bicyclist has been critically injured by a heartless hit-and-run driver.

According to KNBC-4, the victim, described only as a man in his 30s, suffered severe head trauma when he was struck by an unidentified vehicle around 3 am Monday at Vernon Avenue and Broadway in South LA.

Bystanders reportedly moved construction barricades to protect him until help arrived.


Bicyclists aren’t the only two-wheeled riders endangered by road raging drivers, as a San Diego-area woman is charged with second degree murder for running down a motorcyclist she’d argued with while driving on a freeway.


If we can build self-driving cars, it shouldn’t be that hard to develop a system to detect cyclists and keep car doors from opening until the rider has passed to prevent doorings.

At least, that’s what a new German study suggests.



No one really wanted those buffered bike lanes on Vineland, which were supposed to give riders safe alternative route on a quiet street, instead of the long-promised bike lanes on Lankershim that were killed by former Councilmember Tom LaBonge. Well, so much for that.

Writing on LinkedIn, urban planner Nathan S. Holmes says we’ve allowed the media to frame the LA Mobility Plan incorrectly; it’s not bikes vs. cars, but rather, all about choices.

A former LA city planner says every LA street should be a Great Street, not just one little pocket in each council district.

Santa Monica’s Breeze bikeshare reaches 1,000 members in just two weeks.

SoCalCycling reports on last Sunday’s UCI pro cyclocross race in Long Beach.

LA Bike Trains is trying out a new route from Koreatown to UCLA tomorrow.

Celebrate Small Business Saturday this weekend with pop-up protected bike lanes, bike rides led by the LACBC and Calbike’s Charlie Gandy, and all-day events along Venice Blvd in Mar Vista. Unlike some of his fellow councilmembers, the Westside’s Mike Bonin clearly takes the mayor’s Great Streets program seriously.

Join the LACBC and pro cyclist Phil Gaimon in cleaning up Mulholland Drive between Runyon Canyon and the 101 Freeway on December 12th; there’s a free cookie from Sweetsalt Food Shop in it for you.



Irvine residents remember Kevin Jiang, the nine-year old boy killed while riding his bike Friday afternoon; they urge drivers to slow down.

San Francisco will transform half of a busy four-lane street into bike lanes and pedestrians pathways. The mere suggestion of which would undoubtedly cause rioting and lawsuits down here.

A Berkeley cyclist became collateral damage when two women fled from police following an earlier collision; fortunately, he doesn’t seem to be too badly banged up.



The new federal transportation budget not only keeps the popular TIGER grants that have helped build bike and pedestrian projects across the US, but expands it by $100 million.

This could come in handy. A handlebar-mounted external battery will recharge your USB headlight, cam or other electronic devices if they go dead while you ride.

After Grand Junction CO officials cited costs in turning down hosting a stage of next year’s USA Pro Challenge, local residents pitch in $63,000, and counting, out of their own pockets. Speaking of which, my formerly sled dog-running Alaskan brother will be moving to Grand Junction next month, for reasons that escape me.

Chicago’s Deaf Velo Alliance shows hearing loss doesn’t have to be a hindrance to bicycling.

An Atlanta coalition opposes plans to add bike lanes to the city’s iconic Peachtree Blvd for now because not enough Millennials live there yet. No, seriously, that’s what it says.



Bike collisions and fatalities have gone up in Mexico City, even as it works to become friendlier for cyclists. It’s possible that increased ridership could have something to do with it, however.

A Windsor, Ontario letter writer complains about “useless” bike lanes, since he thinks bicycles belong on the sidewalk. Although I’m sure most pedestrians would beg to differ.

A British delivery driver gets 44 months in prison for hiding his diabetes from his employer; he killed a bicyclist when he blacked out after his blood sugar crashed.

Caught on video: A London rider gets left hooked — the equivalent of a right hook on this side of the Atlantic — when he undertakes a cab. If you’re looking to assign blame, I vote for both; the cab driver should have checked his blind spot before turning, but the rider should have held up until he knew what the driver was going to do.

Brompton wants your 15-second videos of unexplored parts of your city, to be judged by Brit filmmaker Guy Ritchie, among others.

Alberto Contador says he gets that his signature gun gesture might not be appropriate at next year’s Tour de France in light of the Paris attacks. Meanwhile, the manager of the women’s Canyon/SRAM team says women’s cycling is stronger than ever.

A new Italian e-bike comes with built-in GPS anti-theft system so you always know where your bike is, even if it rides off without you.

It’s a good problem to have. Amsterdam is building 40,000 new bicycle parking spaces to relieve overcrowded bike lots.

An Aussie writer considers the effect of topography on bicycle mode share, suggesting that bicycling is successful in Copenhagen because it’s so flat.



Evidently, if you choose to ride in a traffic lane at the same speed as the relatively light traffic around you, you’re a cockroach on wheels. That’s one way to compete with the internet — an LBS that serves a good beer while you wait.

And it’s hard for a bike lane to protect cyclists from large trucks when they use it for garbage collection.



Morning Links: Serious sentence for a serious crime, memorial for 9-year old victim, and blame drivers, not bikes

They continue to take traffic crime seriously in Orange County.

An unlicensed drunk driver got 18 years — yes, years, not months — for fleeing the scene after killing an elderly woman and injuring her blind grandson as they stood in a Santa Ana bike lane to observe fireworks on the 4th of July in 2013.

When she was arrested two hours later, Kelly Michele Wolfe had a blood alcohol level of .31, nearly four times the legal limit.

Now she’s going to have a very long time to sober up.

Maybe someone should tell the LA DA this is what can happen when you don’t bargain away all the serious charges.

Thanks to Jeffrey Fylling for the heads-up.


Hundreds of mourners turned out on Sunday to remember the nine-year old boy killed while riding his bike in Irvine on Sunday.

He was a recent Chinese immigrant whose parents had come here looking for a better life.

Instead, they lost a son to this country’s deadly streets.


Great piece from Boyonabike, who says we should “tell car companies to take cynical marketing gimmicks like ‘Volvo Life Paint’ and shove it where the sun don’t shine.”

Because, he says, the real problem is dangerous and distracted drivers, a lack of safe infrastructure, and a “car culture that sells cars on TV by overt appeals to fantasies of speed and danger”

Seriously, read it, already.



The LACBC’s Eric Bruins examines the investment priorities for a proposed transportation ballet measure.

The editor of USC’s Daily Trojan says bikeshare has the potential to revolutionize transit in Los Angeles if anyone actually uses it, while a writer for the Los Angeles News Group questions if people will pay $3.50 a trip to ride a bike.

Western Avenue in Palos Verdes could trade street parking for buffered bike lanes; for a change, the primary concern of local residents isn’t over the loss of parking spaces.

Writing for Orange 20 Bikes, Rick Risemberg offers advice on how to winterize your riding to prepare for El Niño and what passes for winter in the City of Angels.

Santa Clarita wants your opinion on the city’s off-street biking trails.

People for Bikes looks at Burbank’s own Pure Fix Cycles.



A San Jose cyclist is killed in a collision after allegedly bicycling under the influence; no word on why police think he’d been drinking.

San Francisco completes its 24th Vision Zero bike and pedestrian safety project three months ahead of schedule. Which puts it about 23 ahead of LA.



Great news from Arizona, as former US Representative Gabby Giffords takes her recumbent on a 40 mile ride less than five years after her near-fatal shooting.

Evidently, a Colorado letter writer really hates bike lanes; he condemns any government official who puts more than 20 cents into bike lane construction to suffer an eternity of spilling hot coffee in their laps while driving.

A Colorado mountain biker relates the frightening story of how he got lost for nearly two days after falling into a river during a recent Costa Rican race.

A discussion of installing crosstown bike lanes in New York’s Upper East Side draws little opposition, even if one community board member says bicyclists’ lawlessness has resulted in a “complete and total Armageddon.” Not to exaggerate or anything.

A Philadelphia magazine explores the challenges of being African American in white suburbia, including a troubling story of black teenagers just out for a bike ride.

The World Championships didn’t turn out to be the financial windfall for the Richmond area that had been promised.



London’s Cycling Commissioner says banning large trucks during rush hour won’t save as many lives as making trucks safer and building protected bike lanes. He also called a reporter a liar over claims bike riders weren’t using one of the city’s new cycle superhighways.

London plans to close a busy and dangerous junction in the heart of the city to motor vehicles for at least five years to improve safety and “all round congeniality,” while making more room for bikes and pedestrians.

A UK publication says leave the car at home if you don’t want to die young.

Two Brit bike thieves have been jailed for a long running con; they’d leave a laptop bag as security for taking a bike for a test ride, which turned out to hold nothing but books when they didn’t return. They’d gotten away with 23 bikes worth $93,000 before they were caught.

A British woman is left with a broken hip after a collision with a sidewalk-riding bicyclist. But if he just rode off without stopping, how do they know he had a foreign accent?

Forty Americans biked the length of Israel to show support for the Israeli military.

An 18-year old South African man designed and built his own very cool custom bike from scratch.

An Aussie website says it may be time to rethink the country’s bike helmet requirement.

A Kiwi earthmoving company has installed cameras with a dashboard monitor in their trucks to eliminate blind spots that put cyclists and pedestrians at risk.

A five-year old Chinese boy is able to ride his bike again after getting a 3D-printed hand.

Japanese police are looking for a man who smacked a woman in the head with a blunt object after her clothes somehow got caught in his bike when he rode up behind her.



Evidently, it’s okay to steal a bike from a celebrity restaurant as long as you’re a hunk with washboard abs. If you’re going to use a bike as your getaway vehicle after robbing a bank, wearing a cycling cap sets the right stylistic tone.

And who says beautiful bikes don’t grow on trees?


Thanks to Wes High and Matthew Robertson for their donations to support this site. Thanks to their generosity, the first ever Biking in LA Holiday Fund Drive is now up to, uh, three contributions!

Update: Nine-year old boy killed in Irvine collision

Any traffic death is heartbreaking. But it always seems worse when it’s a child.

Word is just coming in that a nine-year old boy was killed while riding his bike in Irvine this afternoon.

According to a press release from the Irvine Police Department, the victim, who has not been publicly identified, was hit by a van at 3:15 pm at the intersection of Roosevelt and Bay Tree. He was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead just 20 minutes later.

The 57-year old driver remained at the scene.

No other information is available at this time.

A satellite view shows a residential neighborhood with four lane divided roadway in each direction, with a bike lane on Roosevelt and three parks within a four block radius.

Anyone with information is urged to contact IPD Traffic Sergeant Matt August at 949/724-7023.

This is the 70th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 17th in Orange County this year.

Update: The Orange County Coroner has identified the victim as Keven Jiang, who lived in Irvine. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the Keven Jiang and all his loved ones.

Thanks to David Huntsman for the link.

Bike rider killed in midnight collision on Vincent Thomas bridge

Sad news from San Pedro, as a bike rider has been killed in a collision after falling on the Vincent Thomas Bridge.

Multiple, virtually identical reports indicate 31-year old Long Beach resident Sergio Tapia was riding north in the right lane of the east-west bridge when he reportedly fell and was hit by a commercial truck, then knocked into the next lane where he was hit by a car.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

No word on what might have caused him to fall, or if there were independent witnesses who saw it happen.

Unlike the replacement Gerald Desmond Bridge, which will have both bike and pedestrian paths when it opens, the Vincent Thomas Bridge has neither, forcing bicyclists to ride in heavy industrial traffic coming to and from the ports in Long Beach and San Pedro. And for some riders, especially those who work at the ports, there is no other viable route.

This is the 69th bicycling fatality in Southern California, and the 28th in Los Angeles County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers Sergio Tapia and his family. 

Morning Links: Sentence in Fiesta Island crash, red light-running SaMo driver, and a long list of bike events

Nineteen years.

That’s the sentence given to Teresa Owens in San Diego on Thursday, for the meth-fueled wrong way collision that injured a dozen cyclists on Fiesta Island last year, leaving one paralyzed from the chest down.

According to the Union-Tribune,

Owens, 50, was at Fiesta Island to try to catch her boyfriend cheating on her. She admitted doing “a small line of methamphetamine” 12 hours beforehand. She was also driving on a suspended license, and she was fresh off a previous DUI arrest.

She drove the wrong way on the one-way road around the island and slammed into a group of cyclists on a training ride coming around a corner. Several flew onto her car or smashed into her windshield.

After her arrest, she was also found with a bag of meth hidden in her snatch.


While making a legal left turn on the yellow, bike rider Wes High was nearly hit by a Santa Monica driver who swerved into the bike lane to get around a stopped car and blow through the light long after it had turned red.


A new study is quick to blame the victims after 40% of teenagers report being hit or nearly hit by cars while walking. Never mind that careless or distracted drivers may have had something to do with it. And no, walking after dark is not an unsafe habit; that’s what human beings have done since we first stood upright.


Nice project from CicLAvia, as they want to give back to the community — as if they don’t already give enough — by donating 30 new bikes, helmets and lights to LA County kids who can’t afford them. They want your help to nominate a kid who deserves one; nominations close on December 2nd.


We’ve got a long list of bike events coming up in the next few weeks.

Today: If you can still make it, Caltrans District 7 Bicycle Advisory Committee is meeting at 9:30 this morning at Caltrans headquarters in DTLA; they want your input on two separate closures on the LA River Bike Path (see below under Local for more information on one of the closures). Thanks to LADOT Bike Program for the heads-up.

Today: Walk Bike Burbank will offer free bike valet at the annual Holiday in the Park festival sponsored by the Magnolia Park Merchants Association.

Saturday: The LACBC will participate in Path Hack at the Spoke Café on the Elysian Valley Pedestrian and Bike Path, a series of free art workshops designed to create a slow zone on the pathway.

CICLE MacArthur Park rideSaturday: Join CICLE and Equitas Academy for a family friendly Bikes and Batidos Ride around the MacArthur Park neighborhood, sponsored by Metro’s Safe Routes to Schools Pilot Program.

Saturday & Sunday: Professional cyclocross comes to El Dorado Park in Long Beach this Saturday and Sunday with the UCI CXLA Weekend.

Sunday: Celebrate the UCI CXLA cyclocross race by joining the Palms to Pines Ride along the San Gabriel River Trail, or take a shorter ride along the beach; proceeds benefit the LACBC and Bike SGV.

Some of the biggest names in international, national, and local cyclocross racing are coming to Long Beach’s El Dorado Park on November 21st and 22nd. As part of this weekend of racing, SoCalCross is offering a Palms to Pines community ride (Ride with GPS route is can be found here.) The ride, along the San Gabriel River Trail, will take riders from the palm trees and sand in Seal Beach all the way north to the pine trees at Azusa River Wilderness Park at the start of the San Gabriel Mountains, before returning to El Dorado Park in plenty of time to watch an afternoon of exciting racing action, enjoy food and beverages at the races, and visit the event’s sponsor Expo. The ride is 77 miles long, but you can ride as much or as little as you like. A shorter Ocean Breeze ride goes to the beach and back. Both are 100 percent on protected bike paths with no car traffic (only 3 street crossings). Registration is $45 ($55 day-of), less for the short ride, and includes an event t-shirt, lunch, pit stops, and a donation to LACBC and other local bicycle advocacy groups.

For more information and to register, go to

November 29th: The Encino Velodrome hosts the Encino Omnium track cycling race, sponsored by Burbank’s own Pure Fix Cycles.

November 29th: The SoCalCross Prestige Series: Turkey Trot Cross comes to Glendale’s Verdugo Park.

December 3rd: The LACBC hosts their annual open house, with drinks from Angel City Brewery; admission is free for LACBC members, so consider joining at the door.

December 3rd: Stan’s Bike Shop invites you to dress up in a holiday theme and join them as they ride in the Monrovia Christmas Parade.

December 3rd – 15th: Metro will be holding a second round of workshops to discuss their Active Transportation Strategic Plan, starting with North Hollywood and ending in Santa Clarita.

December 4th: The highly praised documentary Bikes vs Cars opens at the Laemmle NoHo 7.

December 5th: Ride your bike down to Long Beach for the Belmont Shore Christmas Parade, featuring hundreds of festively dressed marching Corgis.

December 12th: Calbike is hosting a special Bikeways to Everywhere donor party in Los Angeles.

December 27th: Finish the Ride comes to the San Fernando Valley for the first time to combat hit-and-run and help create safer streets for everyone.



A USC student marketing group conducts guerilla marketing campaigns to promote bike safety and security, along with alcohol awareness and combating sexual assault.

The Eastsider reports a one-mile stretch of the LA River bike path along Griffith Park has temporarily reopened after being closed for three days in advance of a projected year-long closure; Zoo Drive and Western Heritage Way are reportedly being “enhanced” in anticipation of the detour.

Santa Monica gets a $300,000 grant to improve traffic safety and help make “streets a more pleasant experience for everyone.” Meanwhile, Seal Beach gets a $140,000 traffic safety grant of their own.

The BBC looks at the Venice Beach Electric Light Parade, as bicyclists light their rides with hundreds of LED lights.

Santa Clarita celebrates its Bronze level Bicycle Friendly Communities award.



A memorial will be held today for John Pavlisin, Sr., the 89-year old owner of the Orange Cycle bike shops in Orange and Santa Ana.

A Saratoga driver is being sought by police for intentionally swerving into a bike lane in an attempt to hit a bicyclist. Somehow, that doesn’t merit more than a couple lines in the police blotter, though.

Menlo Park plans to add buffers to an existing bike lane, along with pedestrian-activated crossing lights, to improve safety along a preferred school route.

Palo Alto plans to extend the nation’s first bike boulevard three decades after it was first installed.

Napa police arrest a man claiming to be a wolf who speaks 13 languages for stealing a bike at knifepoint. No word on whether one of the languages is Lupine.



Bicycling offers a cute look at eight ways having a baby changes your cycling.

No bikes involved, just another example of the mass insanity on our roads, as an allegedly drunk driver killed 38 sheep in a Colorado hit-and-run.

There’s a special place in hell for someone who would steal a custom–made bike from a Texas girl with cerebral palsy; fortunately, a kindhearted stranger has offered to replace it.

The Guardian looks at how Oklahoma City has overturned car culture and what can happen when cities kick the car habit.

A South Dakota business owner and bike advocate says forcing everyone into cars isn’t the solution to bike safety.

A New York radio station explores six things they’ve learned about biking in the city by studying over 3,000 photos of blocked bike lanes.

Forget all those cars, evidently the greatest danger New york bicyclists face comes from other riders. Seriously, that’s what she said; you can stop laughing now.

Not only is Pennsylvania’s Genesis Bicycles planning to close for Black Friday, the shop’s employees will donate that day’s salaries to a local charity.

Evidently, it’s legal to kill a cyclist in your sleep in Maryland, as a dozing Bethesda driver got off with just $690 in fines for negligent driving.



Toronto cyclists says just because a bike looks old or unmaintained, that doesn’t mean it’s been abandoned.

Caught on video: London’s mayor Boris is greeted with angry words and gestures as he opens the city’s first segregated cycle superhighway. The best part is his friendly wave in response to a one-fingered salute from a bike rider. Thanks to Sam Kurutz for the tip.

A London exhibition will display nine of the Cannibal’s racing jerseys; the jerseys, worn by five-time Tour de France winner and multiple world champion Eddy Merckx, are worth an estimated $304,000.

The Guardian looks at a dozen designs that revolutionized bicycling, from Brooks Saddles to fixies and 3D printing.

A coldhearted Brit writer says he only feels sympathy for the “poor car driver who will have the death of the blithering idiot on their conscience” if a ninja cyclist is killed.

Caught on video: A British bike rider stands his ground while demanding that a driver who violated his right-of-way back up instead of going around him.

A new UK company has developed a circular bike parking garage that stores bikes vertically, above or below ground. Can we have a few of those here? Or maybe a few dozen?

A Jewish woman rides a Vélib’ bike across Paris to visit a friend just days after the terrorist attacks.

Emirates and Dubai royalty join in the mourning the death of a champion cyclist and triathlete just a week before his wedding.

Islamic State, the group behind last week’s Paris terrorist attacks, has claimed responsibility for shooting a bike-riding Italian priest in Bangladesh.

A 20-year old South African student gets 13 years for fatally stabbing a man to steal his bicycle.

An Aussie driver with a provisional license apologizes on social media after the cyclist she nearly killed leaves a very polite note saying she looks too nice for prison.



Evidently, doping predates the invention of the bicycle by a few millennia.

If you’ve been very good, maybe Santa or Hanukkah Harry will bring you a $75,000, platinum and diamond encrusted racing bike for your next club ride. Or you could sell it and by the world’s first bicycle/scooter hybrid for 115 of your closest friends.

And caught on video: Chinese cyclists crash head-on at the end of a Gran Fondo when the lead group somehow takes a wrong turn and sprints to the finish from the wrong direction.

Morning Links: Confronting LA’s diabetic drivers, and bike thief’s mom gives back bike her son stole

Let’s talk Diabetes.

Before I was diagnosed last year, I spent about a year trying to keep my sagging energy up with carbs and energy bars.

What was happening, unbeknownst to me, was that my blood sugar would spike after I ate something high in carbs — even the whole grains I thought were better for me — then crash, leaving me hypoglycemic and needing still more carbs to get back up.

In a very real sense, I was chasing the dragon, just like any other addict. Except my addition was to sugar and other carbohydrates.

I thought I could burn them off by riding my bike, even as I became sicker and sicker, my weight slipping from a muscular 190 pounds down to 160, before finally crashing to 145 shortly after I was diagnosed.

I was killing myself with every bite I took, even though I thought I knew what I was doing.

LA drivers are diabetics.

They’re addicted to ever-increasing road capacity every bit as much as I was addicted to carbs, demanding ever more and wider roads, despite the evidence that greater capacity just results in induced demand.

If you don’t believe me, just ask anyone who drives the 405 if the $1 billion road widening project has made their commute any easier.

And they fight tooth-and-nail to preserve every traffic lane and parking spot, even from projects designed to improve safety while providing those who want it with alternatives to driving.

It’s not that they’re bad people. They just don’t know any better.

It’s our city officials that have failed them.

Common sense tells people that removing a traffic lane will only make their commutes worse. Even though it’s been shown repeatedly, in cities around the world, that it can actually improve traffic flow while increasing the odds that they, and those they share the road with, will get home to their families in one piece.

And it tells them that no one will actually ride a bike to work, despite those who do it every day right here in bike-unfriendly LA, and that bike commuting rates have gone up in other cities that have installed safe bike lanes and cycle tracks.

They simply can’t see their addiction is killing them and the city we all love, as LA’s streets, many of which are already at or above capacity for large portions of the day, continue to get more congested as we continue to follow the old failed approach.

Like me, they need an intervention.

In my case, it was my doctor telling me that my blood sugar levels were literally off the charts; so high, in fact, he was surprised I wasn’t already in a diabetic coma. Forcing me to rethink my entire approach to food, and give up those things I thought I needed.

In the case of LA drivers, we need our city officials, from the mayor down to our too-often weak kneed councilmembers, who insist on being led by their constituents rather than the other way around, to explain why the old ways no longer work. And show them how alternative approaches can actually work better, even if it doesn’t seem that way at first.

And that bike lanes, and the people who use them, aren’t the enemy.

They can’t leave it up to us, as they have in the past, to explain why things have to change. That only creates yet another us against them confrontation, as bicyclists fight with drivers and homeowners over our safety versus their fears of gridlock.

It will take our leaders actually leading for a change.

And sticking their necks out to do what’s right, because they already know it is.


Talk about an unexpected development.

Three weeks after a man pushed an 11-year old boy off the bike he’d just won during a Halloween celebration at Ted Watkins Park and rode off with it, the mother of the suspect identified by police has returned the bike to him.

Which means he now has two bikes, since the ESR Bike and Skate Shop had already replaced the stolen bike.

Nice to see mom step in and do the right thing.



CiclaValley explains why drivers are the real threat, even to other drivers.

Thanks to the LACBC, the NoHo Red Line Station now has a short off-road bike path connecting the station to the popular Chandler Bike Path.

Streetsblog reports Metro’s Planning Committee has approved the fair structure for LA’s coming bikeshare system. Meanwhile, Santa Monica’s Transit App now includes real-time information on the city’s Breeze bikeshare program.

In a totally unsolicited plug for a friend, Richard Risemberg’s Bicycle Fixation is offering merino wool bicycling tops on sale at just above cost.

Monrovia is the latest city in the San Gabriel Valley to develop a bike plan, as well as considering a bikeshare program.

Long Beach will crack down on unsafe drivers who put cyclists and pedestrians in danger on Thursday. But that doesn’t mean they’ll let law-breaking bicyclists off the hook.



The OC Register looks at the recent Orange County Honor Ride, which raised $40,000 for injured vets.

A Bakersfield school district gets a $100,000 grant to teach children to ride bikes safely during PE time. Although someone should explain to them that’s not what Vision Zero is, and that it can’t be accomplished in a year. Especially not without focusing on drivers instead of kids.

The three-day Eroica California returns to Paso Robles for the second annual vintage bike event next April.

The Santa Cruz paper looks at the city’s elevation to a gold-level Bike Friendly Community.

Noah Budnick, the Executive Directive of the San Francisco Bicycle Coaliton, has unexpectedly stepped down just under a year after he was hired.

The Sacramento-area’s Cycle Folsom is getting casual riders out onto the road and into spandex.



Streetsblog looks at that study showing a 14% transportation share by bikes in the world’s major cities could result in an 11% reduction in carbon emissions by 2050.

Bicycling encourages you to get out and celebrate Blacktop Friday the day after Thanksgiving instead of Black Friday.

Portland prosecutors ask for $250,000 bail for the self-proclaimed King of Bike Thieves.

If you can make it out to Tucson AZ this Saturday, you could ride with America’s only remaining Tour de France winner.

Researchers in my hometown found the air bike commuters breath basically sucks.

A Wichita cop goes way beyond the call of duty, giving his own bike to a veteran in need after his had been stolen.

Nebraska bike and pedestrian deaths reach their highest level since the turn of the century.

A Chicago hospital executive gets a slap on the wrist for killing a cyclist while on his way home from a holiday party; the judge gave him just 100 days behind bars, even though state law calls for three to fourteen years for aggravated DUI.

Intriguing new bike coming from Boston’s Fortified Bicycle, which promises their Invincible urban bike will be theft proof, flat-resistant and virtually indestructible.

In a sign of what can happen when bike riders and local residents actually listen to each other instead of arguing back and forth, the two sides may be close to an agreement in a dispute over a Baton Rouge bike lane. If Paul Koretz or Gil Cedillo showed enough leadership to sponsor that kind of conversation, we might have had an agreement on Westwood Blvd and North Figueroa ages ago.

A South Florida ride combines bicycling and black jack to raise funds to give bikes to children who can’t afford them.



Ottawa plans a permanent memorial to fallen cyclists.

The new Cycling Revolution exhibit at London’s Design Museum celebrates bicycle engineering; it will be open through the end of June if you’re planning a trip across the pond.

British retailer Tesco is accused of dumping $6,000 worth of new bicycles, some still in boxes, in the trash rather than donating them to those in need.

Fast Company calls the coming 200-foot high Copenhagen bike bridge the craziest bike lane ever built, with elevators that will lift riders up to cross over the harbor.

India’s elite cyclists are attempting to rebuild the cycling team following the death of the team’s coach two years ago, although their training is limited by the country’s dangerous roads.

Motorcycle-riding Bangladeshi gunmen seriously wound an Italian priest as he rode his bike.

Over 3,000 Egyptian cyclists are expected to take part in Cairo’s fourth annual Orange Bike Day sponsored by the Dutch Embassy.



If you’re holding large quantities of cash and illegal drugs, maybe you’re better off not riding a stolen bike. And if you’ve been very good this year, maybe Santa Claus or Hanukkah Harry will bring you a 62 mph carbon fiber hydrogen-fueled e-bike.


Bike rider killed in Riverside; no details available

The Press-Enterprise reports a bicyclist was killed in Riverside’s Lake Hills neighborhood Wednesday afternoon, though few details are available at this time.

According to the paper, the collision occurred on the 15800 block of Skyridge Drive at 3:45 pm; the victim died at a hospital shortly afterwards.

No information was available about the victim or how the collision occurred, though the CHP was investigating.

A satellite view shows a narrow residential street, on what appears to be a steep hill.

This is the 68th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the ninth in Riverside County. That compares with 81 in SoCal this time last year, and ten in the county.

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

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