Bike rider brake checked and right hooked by Miami cop, and Harvard Law Review says throw out MUTCD and start over

No irony here.

A job title turned sadly prophetic when a director of high-impact experiences for the McClatchy newspaper chain had his own high-impact experience when he was brake checked and right hooked by a Miami cop.

The victim was riding with a group of bicyclists on the city’s Rickenbacker Causeway when the officer pulled the patrol car out from the shoulder ahead of the group with red lights flashing, then cut right across the bike lane without warning.

Not surprisingly, people taking part in the ride were quick to blame the cop for putting their safety at risk.

While police say the officer was trying to pull over a bike rider ahead of the group, there’s no sign of that as he turned onto the shoulder and drove back up the other way on the grass.

So here’s my take. And feel free to disagree.

The cop was careless in entering the roadway in front of the group of bike riders, and made no effort to ascertain whether it was safe to turn in front of them.

And if he knew he was going to turn off onto the shoulder, he should have driven on the bike lane, safely following any riders ahead of him, to ensure he did not endanger the riders behind him.

But the people on the bikes also bear responsibility, since they should have maintained their distance while a patrol car had its red lights flashing, rather than closing in behind it.

Now the victim is hospitalized with a broken pelvis.

And the police department is looking at a lawsuit.

Photo by Kindel Media from Pexels.

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Powerful essay from the prestigious Harvard Law Review, suggesting it’s time to throw the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways, aka MUTCD, and start over.

While such provisions may sound inconsequential, some of the Manual’s provisions have far-reaching, even deadly, consequences. They prioritize vehicular speed over public safety, mobility over other uses of public space, and driving over other modes of mobility. With these car-centric priorities, the Manual has helped generate a nearly constant and fast-moving stream of vehicle traffic that renders road users like pedestrians, wheelchair users, and cyclists vulnerable. Moreover, by giving preference to driving over other modes of transportation, the Manual has indirectly facilitated a rise in transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions that are the single largest contributor to climate change

This Essay explains how the Manual biases transportation behavior in dangerous and inequitable ways. It urges the FHWA to use its emergency powers to rescind its most damaging provision — the so-called 85th Percentile Rule, which legalizes dangerously high speeds of traffic — and to undertake a complete rewrite that follows a scientifically sound, evidence-based approach; prioritizes safety, access, equity, climate action, and prosperity; and incorporates feedback from diverse stakeholders.

As you’d expect, it’s not exactly light reading.

But if you care about safety on our streets, it matters.

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Transportation conference CoMotion LA returns online and in person next month. Although the free online access is a lot cheaper than the nearly one grand in-person pass.

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More proof that there’s no such thing as a carfree space in Southern California.

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How to instantly turn one parking spot into eight.

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

Guardian Angels founder and New York mayoral candidate Curtis Sliwa vows to end the city’s entirely imaginary war on vehicles by removing bike lanes and speed cams. So if there’s a war on cars, why are the only victims on the other side?

Someone appears to be boobytrapping an Alabama mountain bike trail by planting sharpened wooden stakes into the ground that could seriously injure riders, or worse. But local officials insist it ain’t necessarily so.

Riding a bicycle on a Malaysian highway could get you up to a year behind bars.

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Local

Streetsblog offers more details on the series of motions by Councilmembers Mike Bonin and the two Pauls, Koretz and Krekorian, to reduce speed limits, make some Slow Streets permanent, and allow cams on buses to enforce bus lanes, based on recently passed new state laws.

Metro is teaming with People for Mobility Justice for a taco ride through DTLA, touring taco vendors and bike infrastructure in Downtown Los Angeles.

SWAT teams surrounded a Huntington Park home after a hit-and-run driver broke in and barricaded himself inside after running down someone on a bicycle; no word on the condition of the victim.

 

State

A San Diego letter writer complains that bike lanes aren’t enough, and the city needs to consider both the quality of the lanes and the air riders are forced to breathe, while another wonders what’s taking so long.

A new report from the nonprofit Climate Action Campaign says San Diego’s ambitious regional transportation plan still isn’t enough to reduce car traffic and meet the city’s climate goals.

Woodland Hills Magazine recommends a handful of “serene” places to ride your bike in the area.

Ventura is hosting the second of two free bike rides this Saturday, as the city seeks public input on planned improvements for pedestrians, cyclists and transit users.

San Mateo is considering lowering speed limits around schools to 15 mph.

A 31-year old driver was arrested for the hit-and-run death of a 53-year old Fairfield man riding a bicycle after the crash was captured on security cam; he faces DUI and hit-and-run charges, as well as a first degree murder count, as a result of a previous DUI conviction.

 

National

A new report from Trek says you only have to ride your bike 435 miles to offset the C02 emissions generated by making it.

Now you, too, can own a folding ebike made to fit under your desk.

While some people continue to call for mandatory helmet laws for bike riders, Seattle’s Kings County Board of Health is moving towards removing theirs over questions of effectiveness and racial disparities in enforcement.

This is the cost of traffic violence. The Portland father who was killed in a Utah crash just four days into a cross-country bike tour was the founder of a nonprofit program designed to inspire children and teens to learn music.

The mayor pro tem of Dallas and a pair of councilmembers led an annual bike ride to city hall to raise awareness around bicycling, where one rider says biking in the city “feels like a death wish.

Plans for a 25 mile Maine rail trail could be on hold, as the state considers extending the rail line’s lease on the unused right-of-way.

He gets it. A Boston Globe columnist takes “cranky” Providence RI to task over complaints that bike lanes are “destroying the fabric of the city, ruining small businesses, and terrorizing innocent walkers who just want to take selfies on the pedestrian bridge without getting run over by Mayor Jorge Elorza on his Huffy.”

New Yorkers call on the state’s new bike-riding governor to sign a bill that adds bike and pedestrian advocates to ridership councils for New York City Transit, the Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North.

No surprise here, as the person seen riding a bicycle in Florida last week was definitely not Brian Laundrie, the fiancé and prime suspect in the death of Gabby Petito. Unless it was a ghost bike in the most literal sense.

 

International

Officials will place the equivalent of $215,000 of artwork along a Welsh bikeway network, after determining they couldn’t spend it for anything else.

Cycling Weekly considers where people in the UK can buy a bike when shortages are predicted to last into 2023.

Life is cheap in Great Britain, where a speeding, sun-blinded driver walked with a suspended sentence and a six-month curfew for killing a woman who was riding a bicycle just steps from her home.

Paris has committed to spending the equivalent of $290 million to make the entire city 100% bikeable.

We may have to deal with dangerous LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about hungry lions, after a Zimbabwean woman disappeared while riding her bicycle, and was later found after apparently becoming a lion’s dinner.

Bike jerseys become wearable art, courtesy of a South African company and a local artist.

Momentum Magazine rides along with Barcelona’s popular school bicycle buses, also known as a bike train.

A Singapore cop was fined $3,000 for falsely reporting his bike had been stolen because he lost the key for the lock, and wanted the police to cut it off for him for free.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former Canadian national time trial champ Rob Britton called it a career after 12 years on the pro tour.

 

Finally…

Who needs wheel hubs, anyway? Turn an empty beer keg into your own DIY bicycle sidecar.

And that feeling when your bicycle is designed to go 200 mph.

No, really.

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

Metro bikewashes 605 freeway expansion, LA council considers safety measures, and CicLAvia heads to South LA

Sometimes, the explanation stinks as much as the project.

And the location.

Anyone who ever drove the 605 Freeway through Baldwin Park and the City of Industry in years past noticed the stench of the duck farm long before it came into sight.

And it lingered long after, making you wonder if the odor was still wafting through the air, or burned into your olfactory nerve.

It’s been 20 years since work began to turn the poultry farm into a park. Although you have to wonder if even that is long enough to get the stink off the land.

But now the stench is wafting from the Metro boardroom, instead.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports the board Planning Committee unanimously approved a $35 million project to widen the freeway interchange at the 605 and Valley Blvd. And is greenwashing it with supposed benefits to bike riders and pedestrians.

What’s depressing is how inexorably these small freeway expansion projects continue to advance. And the Metro gaslighting that now promotes polluting auto-focused freeway expansion as good for equity and for active transportation.

He goes on to note that Caltrans bizarrely certified that the project would have no negative environmental impact.

Because apparently, induced demand isn’t a thing anymore.

The 605/Valley Blvd project was environmentally cleared via a negative declaration (asserting the project has no adverse environmental impacts) approved by Caltrans in May 2021. The environmental documents use discredited Level of Service metrics to show that widening roadways would “reduce congestion on Valley Boulevard” and “alleviate mobility constraints.” The project would widen roads, increasing car congestion and concomitant pollution burdens on the surrounding communities.

Equally bizarre, though, is Metro’s attempts at greenwashing the project by touting its extremely limited benefits to alternative transpiration.

Again, from Linton’s Streetsblog piece —

Caltrans and Metro tout the project as benefiting alternative transportation. The environmental documents assert that the project would “enhance bicyclist and pedestrian safety” and “help reduce GHG [greenhouse gas] emissions” by supporting alternative modes of transportation: biking and walking.

All of the non-car features of the project are:

  • Adding a sidewalk where it is currently missing on the north side of Valley Boulevard – including ADA-mandated features such as wheelchair ramps.
  • Adding “a widened shoulder to provide a future bike lane along Eastbound Valley Boulevard up to the northbound loop on-ramp.” Installing this 1,400-feet length of bike lanes does not appear to be actually included in the project, but the margin for potential future bike lanes is nonetheless noted as helping reduce GHG emissions.
  • Reducing the curve radius of the northbound loop on-ramp from eastbound Valley Boulevard; this “would be reduced to slow entering traffic to enhance safety for bicyclists and pedestrians and support use of these alternative modes.” Note that the reason the turning radius is being narrowed is to accommodate a second lane on the current one-lane on-ramp (without taking out the business next door). Caltrans asserts that an upcoming curve radius would slow Southern California drivers entering the on-ramp, and that this would encourage bicycling. Really.

All the extra bike riding this project would inspire wouldn’t begin to offset the environmental and climate damage it would cause.

Then again, it’s hard to offset anything when the bike and pedestrian side of the equation is virtually nil.

Unless you think a possible, noncommittal quarter-mile bike lane that may never be built is enough to offset what would undoubtedly be a major increase in traffic and emissions.

Or that safety for people on foot and bicycles can really be enhanced by adding a second onramp lane.

Admittedly, I’m not lawyer. But it seems like it wouldn’t take a very big cannon to shoot holes in the environmental report for this project.

Or a water pistol, for that matter.

So let’s be honest.

Every member of the Planning Committee who voted in favor of this project — which is all of them — should be ashamed.

Because whatever benefits this freeway widening project may or may not offer, their efforts to bikewash it with negligible benefits to bike riders and pedestrians stinks every bit as much as the duck farm did.

And it will take years to wash that stench off them, too.

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Nice to see an effort by LA Councilmembers Mike Bonin, Paul Krekorian and Paul Koretz to use newly signed state laws to improve safety on our streets.

Then again, Koretz has always been in favor of safety improvements, as long as they’re in someone else’s district.

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CicLAvia has released details on December’s 5.3 mile open streets festival in South LA, connecting the neighborhoods of South Central, Exposition Park, Leimert Park and Crenshaw.

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Today’s must read comes from an Associated Press story that only tangentially involves bicycles.

Instead, it’s about kids as young as six years old being handcuffed and arrested by police — including brutal use-of-force incidents — the overwhelming majority of whom are Black, brown or other people of color.

Here’s just one example they cite.

About 165 miles due south, in the rural hamlet of Paris, Illinois, 15-year-old Skyler Davis was riding his bike near his house when he ran afoul of a local ordinance that prohibited biking and skateboarding in the business district — a law that was rarely enforced, if ever.

But on that day, according to Skyler’s father, Aaron Davis, police officers followed his mentally disabled son in their squad car and chased his bike up over a curb and across the grass.

Officers pursued Skyler into his house and threw him to the floor, handcuffing him and slamming him against a wall, his father said. Davis arrived to see police pulling Skyler — 5 feet tall and barely 80 pounds, with a “pure look of terror” on his face — toward the squad car.

“He’s just a happy kid, riding his bike down the road,” Davis said, “And 30 to 45 seconds later, you see him basically pedaling for his life.”

Seriously, there’s no damn excuse for targeting kids like this, unless they somehow pose a direct threat.

And that’s pretty hard to imagine for a six-year old.

Or an unarmed 15-year old just out for a bike ride.

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More evidence that motor vehicle exhaust lowers intelligence, as a Texas driver rolls coal into a Whataburger dining room.

@jaysonmanzanares0

Only in Texas #fypシ #smoke #funny #stupid #dumbass #viral #popular #outtaline #whataburger @Whataburger

♬ original sound – Jayson Manzanares

While it may seem like an obnoxious prank, it should be treated as an assault with a deadly weapon, which could have severe consequences for anyone with allergies or breathing problems.

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Who needs a bike car in the train when you’ve got one in front of it?

Thanks to Keith Johnson for the forward.

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

No bias here. Instead of improving safety, Korea’s leading steel maker is banning bicycles from its mills.

Singapore is banning bicyclists from riding in groups of more than ten people riding abreast, or five riding single file.

 

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

Calabasas sheriff’s deputies are looking for a bike-riding cosmetics shoplifter who raided the local Sephora and Ulta Beauty stores on at least four separate occasions.

Police in my Colorado hometown are looking for a peeping Tom who fled by bicycle after he was spotted, firing several shots at a group of people who tried to confront him.

A bike-riding Florida teenager says he was trying to kill himself to avoid going back to jail when he fatally shot a cop he was wrestling with, who was trying to arrest him for attempting to break into several cars.

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Local

No news is good news, right?

 

State

The New York Times explains why Newsom vetoed a handful of bills, including California’s proposed Stop As Yield law and one legalizing jaywalking. Meanwhile, SF Gate questions why Newsom vetoed the jaywalking bill, since everyone does it.

Here’s a chance to make some money while you ride your bike. Caltrans wants to pay you up to $250 a day to clean up trash along California highways.

Santa Barbara is hosting a pair of public meetings, virtual and otherwise, to discuss a possible bike/ped bridge over the 101 Freeway.

A Santa Cruz charity ride raised over $200,000 for local nonprofits. And no, it’s not named for conservative KFI shock jocks Jon and Ken.

Good news and bad news. Bay Area bike riders are happy to learn the hard-won bike lane on the Richmond-San Raphael Bridge won’t have to be closed for construction of a proposed water pipeline. But the approach leading to the bridge will be.

 

National

Seriously, who doesn’t need a limited edition Ozzy Osbourne bike jersey?

A climate website looks at the delivery riders on the front lines of the shakeup in sustainable transportation, and the price they pay with their own lives and bodies. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

Outside offers advice on how to avoid low bone density, which has been linked to extensive bicycling.

Road Bike Action offers tips on how to be your own wrench.

Consumer Reports provides advice on how to keep your ebike running longer, while warning about the dangers of ebike battery fires.

A trio of Seattle physicians call on officials to reconsider a proposal to revoke the county’s mandatory bike helmet law, which has been used to unfairly target people of color.

Kindhearted Texas residents pitched in to buy a new ebike for a formerly homeless vet, after his homemade shoeshine cart and the jury-rigged ebike he built were stolen; he recovered the shoeshine cart, but his bike remains missing.

Hats off to a group of Rhode Island mountain bikers, who pitched in to scrub Nazi graffiti off state lands.

A former mountain biker from Seattle is in New York, replicating the Shadowman figures of 1980s street artist Richard Hambleton.

An op-ed from three New York teens calls on the city to develop The NYC Tube, a proposed inter-borough bicycle highway. We need something like that here in Los Angeles to connect at least some of the 88 cities in LA County. Let alone one crossing the City of LA itself.

Momentum Magazine talks with a stunt rider who calls himself Obloxkz, or O, about the Red Bull documentary NYC Bike Life and the ride-outs that continue to traumatize Long Island drivers.

Florida police are checking an abandoned bike for fingerprints, which may or may not have been the bike ridden by someone who may or may not have been Brian Laundrie, who may or may not be suspected in the death of Gabby Petito. Meanwhile, investigators are examining human remains found in a Florida nature reserve, which may or may not be Laundrie’s.

 

International

Intenet users teamed up to find a handicapped Vancouver man’s stolen handcycle, just 17 minutes after he posted a notice of the theft online.

An Italian ultracyclist is riding over 1,200 miles from Milan to Glasgow for the COP26 climate conference to spread the word about bicycling.

Once again, bike riders are heroes, as India’s Relief Riders earn a nomination for next year’s Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts to deliver food and medicine to elderly, disabled and people isolating during the worst of the country’s pandemic.

An Indian man insists he loves his wife, despite running her down with his car as she rode her bicycle to work, then hacking her to death before attempting to cut her head off. Which makes you wonder what he would have done if he didn’t love her.

Malaysia threatens to jail people for up to three months for the crime of riding an e-scooter on public streets.

 

Competitive Cycling

Seems appropriate. Rising Belgian pro Remco Evenepoel will take part in the Kansas edition of the Belgian Waffle Ride, along with his Deceueninck-QuickStep teammate Mattia Cattaneo.

Seventeen top women’s teams have confirmed for next week’s inaugural Lion’s Den race in Sacramento, with a star-studded field including US Olympians Lily Williams and SoCal’s own Coryn Labecki, who was formerly known as Coryn Rivera before her recent marriage.

Cyclist looks forward to next year’s women’s Tour de France, calling it a week of brutal climbs and gravel.

A diabetes website talks with former Team Novo Nordisk cyclist Ezra Ward-Packard about the joys of competing with Type 1 diabetes. Thanks again to Keith Johnson. 

Cannondale is teaming with travel and language company EF Education First to sponsor new college cycling teams at one HBCU and two tribal colleges, with enough funding for three years.

Forty-seven-year old Natalie van Gogh is calling it a career after 15 years in the pro peloton, insisting she’s just Natalie, “not Natalie the transgender cyclist.”

 

Finally…

Probably not the best idea to ride your e-scooter on a highway, weaving in and out of traffic at up to 60 mph. Now you, too, can get your next bike from a haunted REI co-op.

And maybe it’s time we demanded a mandatory helmet law for deer.

Pretty impressive handspring as it tumbles offscreen, too.

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

LAX opens massive climate-destroying parking garage, “immoral” painted bike lanes, and $1000 Prada bike shorts

While the world is literally burning, Los Angeles opens a massive new parking garage to encourage more people to drive to LAX.

Yes, Los Angeles will open a people mover to finally connect the airport to the city’s rail system in another two years.

Something that should have happened nearly two decades ago when the Green Line, now called the C Line, inexplicably bypassed the airport. Note: I originally misidentified this as the Blue Line; thanks to John for the correction.

The $5.5 billions plan to improve non-automotive access to the airport also promises to make it easier to bike to there. But exactly what that means, and when we’ll finally see it on the streets, remains unclear.

But as this massive car storage facility makes clear, the city is planning for driving to remain the primary way to access the airport for the foreseeable future — if not actively encouraging it through induced demand.

Climate emergency be damned.

Here’s another view.

Thanks to Ted Faber and Schroedinger for the heads-up.

Photo of smoke-shrouded sky by Cole Keister from Pexels.

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Frightening video from the Bay Area earlier this month, when a small group of bicyclists were nearly run down by a driver who fell asleep and crossed over onto the wrong side of the road.

San Francisco Streetsblog’s Roger Rudick offers it as evidence that painted bike lanes are immoral, leaving vulnerable road users in mortal danger.

Although it’s hard to imagine that most protected bike lanes would prevent something like this, either.

Rudick notes that only a curb-protected bike lane or a parking protected lane would have kept this driver out.

And even those are questionable, since there’s a good chance the snoozing driver could have jumped a curb, while parking protected lanes depend on whether anyone is actually parked there at the time.

Never mind any of the more common bollard protected lanes, whether the fat plastic bollards or the car-tickler plastic bendie posts that are euphemistically termed protection.

The gold standard for protection remains heavy, albeit ugly, k-rails, or planters that are anchored to the pavement.

But plastic is less expensive. And paint is even cheaper.

Which should tell you what officials think our lives are worth.

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Southern California Families for Safe Streets is hosting their monthly brunch to fight traffic violence this Saturday.

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One of the big question marks in traffic safety is the shifting perceptions on the roll law enforcement should play.

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This is what could happen here if we had safer streets.

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This is who we share the road with.

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That feeling when you get kicked out of Prada with your $40 bike shorts.

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

Life is cheap in London, where a driver walked with a year of community service for intentionally running down a bike rider, who turned out to be the city’s former bicycling czar.

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Local

The Southern California Association of Governments, aka SCAG, received a $1.25 million state grant for its award-winning Go Human campaign.

Santa Monica is in the process of adding a protected bike lane and protected intersections on 17th Street, as well as other safety projects on streets surrounding the 17th Street/SMC Metro Station.

Sit-down e-scooter provider Wheels settled a consumer protection lawsuit with Santa Monica for $300,000, after the city accused it of operating without a permit.

Eternals actress Malin Akerman is one of us, after she was spotted riding the streets of Los Feliz with her eight-year old son on the back of a fat tire ebike.

 

State

No news is good news, right?

 

National

The Bike League is looking for a temporary Advocacy and Outreach Assistant to help prepare for next year’s National Bike Summit.

A Streetsblog op-ed makes the case for reducing inequities in our cities through better management of the streets.

Singletracks offers a beginner’s guide to truing your mountain bike wheels.

A record-setting ebike rider is making a 6,500-mile loop around the US on a custom-built solar-powered electric bike, although he’s skipping the Deep South for some reason.

A 60-year old Portland woman has been frightened off her bike after she was left-crossed by a driver while riding in a crosswalk. Fortunately, she wasn’t seriously injured, but says the fear has deprived her of an important mobility tool. Simply put, we will never make a serious dent in car usage until average people of all ages feel safe on our streets without one.

San Antonio is the latest city converting its entire bikeshare system to ebikes.

Salem, Massachusetts is considering lifting a ban on ebikes, which are technically illegal under a state law intending to ban mopeds.

No surprise here, as New York’s only safe streets PAC has endorsed Democratic mayoral candidate Eric Adams over Republican nominee and avowed bike lane hater Curtis Sliwa, who wants to remove any bike lanes that aren’t actively used.

Gothamist asks if New York is about to get its first bike mayor, after presumptive winner Adams pledges to regularly ride his bike to and from City Hall, adding “I think if people start seeing their mayor on a bike, they’d be more encouraged to know that the streets are safe to ride their bikes.” Although an actual bike mayor is something entirely different

A 72-year old Virginia woman has completed the last leg of her record-setting cross-country bike ride, using her route to draw a peace sign across the US in honor of her brother, who was killed when his plane went down in Laos when she was 20 years old.

Brian Laundrie may be one of us, after the reputed prime suspect in the killing of killing of Gabby Petito was reportedly seen riding a bicycle a few hours north of his Florida home. Then again, he’s also reportedly been seen all over the state, and as far north as the Appalachian Trail.

 

International

A new survey shows 40 percent of British people would consider buying an ebike, a jump of 11 percent since before the pandemic.

Pink Bike says clipless Crocs are a thing now, developed by a three-time French bike polo champ.

A Spanish firm has released the final designs for a wooden bike you can download and build yourself for around $500. Or maybe you’d rather buy a completed bespoke wooden bike for the equivalent of around $5,400.

Hungary plans to install eight luminescent, glow-in-the bike lanes by the end of the year.

I want to be like him when I grow up. An 80-year old Turkish man has ridden a bicycle almost every day for 71 years, and still rides 12 miles a day, when he’s not caring for sick or injured animals.

More proof bicycling pays, as bikes contribute a massive $6.3 billion to the Australian economy.

 

Competitive Cycling

Who says cyclists aren’t tough? Dutch pro Annemiek van Vleuten is already back on her bicycle, just two weeks after breaking her pelvis and shoulder in the inaugural women’s Paris-Roubaix.

 

Finally…

Buy this unique mountain bike for $2,500 and get the patent for it free. Maybe it’s not the best idea to steal a bike from behind the police station since it probably belongs to a cop.

And that feeling when bikes power the show.

………

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

Unidentified bike rider in Torrance crash, Reseda Blvd Complete Streets moves forward, and Colin Powell was one of us

Yet another tragic reminder to always carry ID when you ride.

LA County health officials are asking for help identifying a man who was injured in a collision while riding his bike in Torrance Thursday morning.

The victim is described as a man in his 50s or 60s, possibly Asian, 5’3″ and 150 pounds.

He has a muscular build, with short salt and pepper hair, possibly balding in the front, and was riding a bicycle spray-painted in a variety of colors.

While no information was given on his condition, he’s most likely unconscious and unable to identify himself.

Anyone with information is urged to call the hospital at 424/306-6310.

We’ve said it many times before.

Always carry some form of ID with you when you ride a bike, and preferably not something that’s likely to be stolen if you’re incapacitated.

And yes, that happens more than you might think.

I always wear a Road ID when I’m on my bike, and any other time I leave home, since it doubles as my diabetic alert bracelet.

I also carry a slip of paper in my seat pack with my name and emergency contact information, just in case.

Because emergency personnel need to know who you are to access your medical records.

And your loved ones deserve to know where you are if anything happens.

Photo by Olya Kobruseva from Pexels.

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Here’s something to look forward to.

LADOT offers a progress report on the $19.5 million Reseda Boulevard Complete Streets Project between Parthenia St and Victory Blvd, which remains a year and a half from completion.

Progress Report 

Over the past few months, City of LA crews have been actively working on the east side of the street starting at Victory Blvd. and moving north, reconstructing portions of the sidewalk and driveways in greatest need of repair, rebuilding corner curb ramps to meet current accessibility standards, and rebuilding broken curbs and gutters. The result will be safer, smoother surfaces for people walking, rolling, and driving on Reseda Blvd.

As of October 2021, crews have completed these elements between Victory Blvd and Sherman Way, and have started on the segment between Sherman Way and Wyandotte St. Crews will return to these segments in 2022-2023 to install the other project elements such as signals, bus boarding islands, and trees. Note that at intersections where changes to the traffic signals are planned, corner curb ramps will be upgraded later, at the same time that the signal work is completed.

What’s Next?

Sidewalk construction activity on Reseda Blvd will continue progressing northward toward Parthenia St, on the east side of the street, through Fall 2022. You can continue to expect intermittent sidewalk and driveway closures and temporary parking restrictions in this area.

Please be mindful of the work crews as you travel – we appreciate your patience as we work to improve this street!

Questions or Concerns?

………

There may be a reason. But there’s no effing excuse.

………

You’ve got to be kidding.

The San Francisco Bike Index account was restricted on Twitter, apparently for somehow violating their rules by helping people recover their stolen bicycles.

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Always carry a spare bike in case you get a flat.

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

No bias here. A Canadian letter writer wonders when the madness will end, insisting there’s no reason to clear snow from a bike lane because no one in their right mind would ride a bike in the snow. Which is exactly why they need to clear the snow from the bike lanes, so no one has to.

Protesters vandalized planters blocking the street for one of London’s Limited Traffic Neighborhoods, or LTNs, the country’s equivalent of Slow Streets on this side of the Atlantic.

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

The New York bike rider who went on a stabbing spree on and around the Williamsburg Bridge has been charged with attempted murder, as well as assault, menacing, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal possession of a controlled substance; he could face additional charges for his second victim.

Tragic news from Florida, where a Hollywood police officer was shot and killed by a bike-riding car burglar; police arrested the 18-year old suspect.

………

Local

Streets Are For Everyone is hosting a Halloween Finish The Ride & Run in Santa Clarita on the 31st.

An editor for the Loyola Marymount student newspaper says it’s time to get rid of the ban on e-scooters on campus, saying it only serves to encourage more driving.

 

State

The Orange County Transportation Authority, aka OCTA, wants your input to develop an updated county transportation plan.

The San Diego Association of Governments, better known as SANDAG, is offering grants up to $3,000 for “programs or projects that promote biking through outreach and education” during next year’s May Bike Month. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

Ventura County sheriff’s deputies are looking for the man who assaulted an 11-year old boy as he rode his bike to school, standing in front of his bike and grabbing the boy’s wrists to keep him from leaving.

Patagonia examines the bakers behind San Luis Obispo’s Bread Bike, who deliver freshly baked loaves by bicycle, while making new friends by pedaling their way into the community. Thanks to Tim Rutt for the link.

In a Bay Area takeoff on Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee, a San Francisco comic is hosting the new web series Comedians On Bicycles Getting Bobs, a local doughnut shop.

 

National

CityLab looks at the growing trend of city-owned ebike lending libraries.

Best Reviews gets a jump on the holiday season by recommending the best gifts for bike riders, which also doubles as an ad for Amazon.

A writer for Cycling Tips offers his wish list for the bike industry, including better quality control and backward compatibility, as well as a return to “rad” alloy frames.

Bicycling says light exercise in the days after a concussion may help shorten recovery time. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

You’ve got to be kidding. A Utah man was killed when a woman “accidentally” right hooked him — then drove over him after hitting him a second time, before backing up and over him again, and finally pulling forward a third time and running over his bicycle; needless to say, no charges were filed. Although anyone that confused after a crash should never be allowed to drive again.

Evidently, people are tough in Montana, where a bike rider bounced back up after a pickup driver blew through the crosswalk he was riding in and slammed into his bike. Be sure you want to watch the video in the first link; even though the rider appears to be okay, it’s still hard to watch.

The chief of the Waller Police Department in Texas admitted that his agency screwed up mishandled the investigation into the six bicyclists who were run down by 16-year old pickup driver attempting to roll coal, and failing badly. Well, no shit.

Nice story from St. Joseph, Missouri, where fellow students pitched in to buy a high school senior a new bike after his was trashed in a collision.

A student at New York State’s University of Rochester filed a lawsuit alleging she was arrested while riding her bike back to campus following a protest for Black lives, and mistakenly labelled an outside agitator by the mayor and police chief.

New York firefighters issued a warning after a rash of fires caused by lithium-ion ebike batteries.

The National Park Service will work with the DC Department of Transportation to install a two-way protected bike lane along the National Mall.

 

International

Police in Toronto are looking for the owners of an unleashed hit-and-run dog after a man was seriously injured when he collided with it while riding his bike along the beach; no word on the dog’s condition after the crash.

London’s Evening Standard examines how bicyclists became the latest targets of the city’s violent, machete-wielding gangs on mo-peds.

A Streetsblog op-ed considers Britain’s School Streets program to reduce car traffic in front of schools, while improving safety and air quality.

A bike rider in the UK was hospitalized when he fell off his bike and was impaled by his handlebars — something that happens more often than you might suspect, particularly with kids.

While we have to struggle just to get paint on the street, Brussels will improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians by building carfree underpasses at the city’s busiest canal crossings.

Your next bike could be a Mercedes-AMG — if you have a spare 16 grand laying around.

Dubai will employ artificial intelligence to detect people riding their bikes without helmets, which are mandatory in the city.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling News offers more details on the decision of the L39ION of Los Angeles cycling team to take a stand by withdrawing from the USA Crits series they dominated this year, after the race director was suspended by the US Center for SafeSport for undisclosed reasons; news also broke of his previous arrests for possession of kiddie porn in 2007 and 2008.

Twenty-one-year old Belgian cyclist Remco Evenepoel intends to challenge for next year’s Grand Tours, but realizes he still has a way to go before he can effectively take on riders like Tadej Pogačar, Egan Bernal and Primož Roglič.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you have to ride the last ten miles to the bike shop clenching your broken saddle between your butt cheeks. If you’re going for a bike ride, maybe leave the loaded shotgun at home — along with the heroin and coke.

And Colin Powell was one of us, too.

………

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

Metro Bike expands to Hollywood, O’Farrell claims to support bikes, and L39ION of LA quits USA Crit series

Metro has officially gone Hollywood.

A few weeks after we spotted the new Metro Bike hub on the southwest corner of Fuller and Franklin avenues, just a couple blocks from the entrance to Runyon Canyon, Metro has officially unveiled their new bikeshare expansion into Hollywood.

The new hubs make it easier to connect with existing Metro Bike hubs in East Hollywood, Los Feliz and Silver Lake, part of the 220 hubs docking stations in DTLA, Central L.A., Exposition Park and North Hollywood.

The new network opens with a dozen stations centered primarily around Hollywood Blvd, extending down to Sunset and Santa Monica blvds.

  • Franklin and Fuller avenues
  • Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue
  • Highland Avenue and Sunset Boulevard
  • Hawthorne Avenue and Orange Drive
  • McCadden Place and Hollywood Boulevard
  • Cherokee Avenue and Hollywood Boulevard
  • Whitley Avenue and Hollywood Boulevard
  • Ivar Avenue and Hollywood Boulevard
  • Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street
  • Fountain Avenue and Vine Street
  • Yucca Street and Argyle Avenue
  • McCadden Place and Santa Monica Boulevard

The Hollywood bikeshare system should prove popular with tourists, providing an alternative to walking the Walk of Fame, as well as connecting with other popular tourist attractions.

Unfortunately, it comes with a near total lack of bicycling infrastructure in the area, forcing people who don’t know the area to contend with heavy LA traffic.

Let’s keep our fingers crossed that goes better than I think it will.

………

Meanwhile, a number of people took issue with a Saturday tweet from CD13 Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell claiming to support bike infrastructure in his Hollywood-based district.

Like this one from a challenger to O’Farrell in next year’s election.

Then there’s this.

Maybe O’Farrell should try listing some of the bike lanes he claims to have supported in his district, since no one seems to know about them.

Or better yet, he could try moving forward with some of the ones he’s killed before next year’s election, if he wants to get the bike vote.

Like moving those Hollywood Blvd protected bike plans off the master plan and onto the streets, before someone gets killed out there.

And approving the shovel-ready lane reduction on deadly West Temple Street that he killed three years ago, claiming a lack of community engagement, despite overwhelming support for the project.

………

Installing bike lanes when streets are repaved should be the rule, not the exception.

Unfortunately, these only cover a fifth of a mile before dumping riders off onto sharrows.

LADOT should be required to build out bike lanes when any street in the bike plan is repaved, as some other major cities have committed to doing.

Instead, it’s common practice in Los Angeles to repave streets with little or no consideration to people on two wheels, regardless of whether the street is included in the bike plan.

But then, as we were reminded by an LADOT official shortly after the 2010 bike plan was unanimously passed by the city council, it remains merely “aspirational.”

………

This Vision Zero webinar should be interesting.

And here’s a better description.

You’ve seen it before. Commercials with cars doing donuts down dense city streets. PSAs telling pedestrians it’s on them, not drivers, to avoid being hit in a crash. Car culture shows no signs of slowing down, and has a firm grip on how the safe streets movement appears in mainstream media and marketing. Join this panel to hear from experts on just how pervasive this grip is, how we begin to relinquish it, and how to successfully frame and move the needle on Vision Zero through the media and marketing.

It’s part of the virtual 2021 Vision Zero Cities conference beginning Wednesday, intended to explore “the most pressing issues on our streets today. From street design to traffic enforcement, hear from experts and advocates devoted to safe streets and livable cities.”

………

Congratulations to everyone who participated in Saturday’s LAPD Back the Blue Ride. Nice to see the department encouraging officers to ride their bikes.

………

Megan Lynch offers a thread on the sad state of bollards that are supposed to protect people on bicycles in ostensibly bike-friendly Davis.

………

This is what bike lane enforcement looks like in a city that actually cares about safety.

To answer the question, yes, I can imagine it.

But I wouldn’t count on it.

It would be easy enough for Los Angeles to put parking enforcement officers on bikes, and charge them with enforcing illegal parking in bike lanes, like this video from Toronto.

Instead, drivers feel free to park in bike lanes throughout the city, with little risk getting a ticket — let alone towed.

And cops are often the worst offenders, especially Downtown.

Thanks to Glenn for the heads-up.

………

A new British ad makes the case that bikes are best for short journeys. And that when more people bike, everyone wins.

………

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

The debate over whether to allow cars on San Francisco’s Great Highway has devolved into vandalism and threats, as someone keeps vandalizing sensors intended to count road users, while local residents hold signs demanding bike riders get out of their neighborhood. Thanks to Robert Leone for the tip.

A small group of New York residents protested against the city’s Open Streets program — aka Slow Streets — complaining about dangerous bike riders, and apparently feeling they would be safer contending with cars instead.

No bias here. A writer for a car website says the new 18 mph speed limit in Paris is just part of the war on cars, designed to force people out of them.

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

A bike-riding, 44-year old man is under arrest for stabbing a pair of men on New York’s Williamsburg Bridge and a nearby park after arguing with them in separate incidents; both victims are in critical condition.

Police are on the lookout for a Florida man who made his escape by bicycle after dashing out of a smoke shop with $178 worth of purloined cigars and cigarettes.

………

Local

This is the cost of traffic violence. Heartbreaking news from North Hills, where an 18-month old toddler was collateral damage in a hit-and-run collision when one of the cars slammed into a group of people standing by a food cart, where the boy was waiting in a stroller with his grandparents; one other woman was seriously injured. The heartless coward in the other car fled the scene after the crash. Seriously, when the hell will we finally get fed up with sacrificing our kids at the altar of the almighty motor vehicle, and demand safer streets for everyone? It’s long past time for an American Stop de Kindermoord movement. 

Crosstown LA looks at the rise in road road in post-pandemic Los Angeles, too often involving a gun.

Long Beach is looking for volunteers to conduct the city’s bike and pedestrian count. Assuming you can get past the paper’s paywall, anyway.

 

State

This is how Vision Zero is supposed to work. San Diego’s KPBS public radio discusses how the city is ramping up bike infrastructure in response to the dramatic increase in bicycling deaths this year.

Sad news from Merced, where someone riding a bicycle was somehow killed by a driver in some sort of truck, who may or may not have remained at the scene.

A new study from San Jose State University examines attitudes towards bike helmet use and the effects of a possible mandatory helmet law in the state. And yes, you may have answered a survey for this one awhile back.

Bay Area transportation leaders will talk bike safety on the iconic Golden Gate Bridge.

She gets it. A bike-riding Sonoma County columnist asks if it’s really that hard to be considerate to bike riders, while noting that the real objection to the recently vetoed Stop as Yield Law is the way bike riders are too often seen as “others,” and somehow less than human.

 

National

Parade Magazine’s Marilyn vos Savant, the columnist with the record-setting IQ, proves she really is a genius by confirming that it’s safer to ride a bicycle with traffic. Although she could have mentioned that it’s also the law everywhere in the US.

A writer for the Atlantic makes the case that the simplest way to make roads safer while reducing police violence is to reduce the amount of cars on the road, while taking traffic enforcement away from cops.

Heartbreaking news from Arizona, where yet another cross-country bike rider was killed when a Portland husband and father was run down by a driver while riding through a remote section of the state. A crowdfunding campaign for his family has raised nearly $64,000 of the updated $75,000 goal. Seriously, people should be able to ride their bikes across the US without taking their lives in their hands.

Tragic news from Iowa, where the body of an 11-year old boy was found in a cornfield, five months after he disappeared while riding his bike; police consider the case “suspicious.”

The Boston Globe examines the debate over expanding bikeways in Providence, Rhode Island, pitting the environment and infrastructure against public safety and traffic concerns, while noting a similar debate over a bike path built in 1983 that’s now wildly popular.

Awful case from New York, where a man walking his bike through a crosswalk was killed by a hit-and-run driver while his wife looked on in horror, just one more death in what is turning out to be a very deadly year for people on bicycles.

More bad news from New York, where a 51-year old man was stabbed to death  by a thief who stole his bicycle; he was apparently a delivery rider for Grubhub.

The New York Post’s decidedly anti-bike columnist continues yelling at kids to get off his lawn, insisting that rerouting the city’s 5th Avenue before the holidays to install bike lanes is madness.

He gets it, too. A New York State bike advocate says bicycles can be part of the state’s green future.

 

International

A travel website recommends eleven “enchanting” places where cars aren’t allowed, including three in the US.

A 14-year old Indian girl was a finalist for Prince William’s Earthshot Prize to inspire innovative idea to fight climate change, with her design for a solar-powered, bike-based mobile ironing cart to press wrinkles out of clothes, to replace the estimated 10 million ironing carts that each burn an average of about 11 pounds of charcoal per day.

The senseless violence continues in South Africa, where a man was shot and killed by a group of robbers who stole his bicycle.

 

Competitive Cycling

In a surprising move, L39ION of Los Angeles has pulled out of the USA Crits series, after the director of the race series was suspended, and implicated in a decade old child pornography case.

L39ION of LA’s announcement was quickly followed by the withdrawal of the Aevolo Cycling team, along with the Boise Twilight Criterium and Tulsa Tough, which announced they would no longer be associated with the series.

USA CRITS Managing Director Scott Morris was “temporarily suspended” by the organization for some sort of unannounced misconduct; Morris had reportedly been arrested for possession of child pornography in Virginia and Georgia in 2007 and 2008, but he apparently bargained the case down to a conviction for theft of computer services.

Conviction or not, there should be no time limit on child pornography, if it can be established that he really possessed it. One strike and you’re out. 

Period.

 

Finally…

Join the Aussie army so you, too, can ride a 50 mph ebike. When is a bike lane not a bike lane? When it’s just road markings.

And lots of people carry their dogs on their bikes.

A cat on a fixie, not so much.

………

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

Hit-and-run driver severely injures e-scooter rider, support Eagle Rock One Lane plan, and Nobel laureate on a bike

The LAPD is looking for a hit-and-run driver who left-crossed a man on an e-scooter in Huntington Park, then fled the scene dragging the dangling rear bumper of her car behind her.

As always, there is a $25,000 standing reward in the City of Los Angeles for any hit-and-run resulting in serious injury.

But be warned before you click on the video.

It clearly shows the crash from multiple angles, and could be very hard to watch.

And you can’t unsee it if you do.

Handcuff photo by Kindel Media from Pexels. Let’s help fit this driver for a pair. 

………

Eagle Rock Forward needs your help to make one last push to get Metro to adopt the livable, Complete Streets option for bus rapid transit on Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock.

Metro’s “One Lane” option is an evolution of the Beautiful Boulevard plan. It is the ONLY option that:

  • Provides a green street by preserving & enhance existing landscaped medians
  • Supports local businesses by maintaining on-street parking & space for Al Fresco dining
  • Protects school kids by providing additional & safer crosswalks
  • Makes a safer street by reducing speeding on Colorado Boulevard
  • Reduces cut-through driving on residential streets by maintaining space on Colorado for pick-up & drop-off zones
  • Upgrades existing bike lanes to be family-friendly protected bike lanes
  • Provides transit service for Eagle Rock that is attractive and dependable to support existing bus riders and attract new transit riders

………

If I found out a Nobel laureate read this site, I’d probably promote the hell out of it, too.

………

GCN considers how it’s possible for every new bike to be the lightest, stiffest, fastest or most aero.

Or not.

………

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

No bias here. A proposal before the Massachusetts legislature would “improve” bike safety by fining bike riders as much as motorists for traffic violations, even though bicycles pose a fraction of the risk to others.

No bias here, either. DC’s conservative newspaper suggests the bike lobby is running the city, and forcing anti-car tactics on the unsuspecting driving public by reducing speed limits and improving safety on high risk corridors. And insists some crashes are caused by medical emergencies rather than reckless drivers, and sometimes bike riders might even be at fault. But unlike drivers, reckless bike riders hardly ever kill anyone.

A road-raging farmer in the UK was convicted of attacking a bike rider who followed him home to confront him after a punishment pass, because the man on the bike was riding in the roadway instead of on a separated bike path next to it; he was fined the equivalent of a whopping $146I know as well as anyone how tempting it is to follow a driver who threatens your safety. But seriously, don’t. Just let it go and get on with your life.

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

London bike riders are caught on dashcam video “recklessly” jumping a red light, even though there wasn’t any cross street, and after waiting for pedestrians to cross.

………

Local

LA Times columnist George Skelton’s windshield bias is showing, as he says Gov. Newsom was right to veto bills that would have legalized jaywalking and stop as yield, calling them nutty bills that would allow people to harass drivers. Nothing like demonstrating you don’t understand the problem before criticizing the solution.

 

State

Santa Maria unveiled a new $900,000 road diet project with protected bike lanes, complete with curbs and car tickler plastic bendie posts.

Bike theft continues to be a major problem at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, where students have lost faith in relying on the police for help.

Tragic news from Santa Rosa, where a 47-year old man faces a slim chance of survival after he was hit head-on by an allegedly stoned driver while riding his bicycle outside town; he was already considered disabled from a previous collision 25 year earlier.

Campus police at Chico State University caught a bike thief in action and busted him as he tried to ride away, then returned the purloined bicycle to its owner. Meanwhile, a “super bike cop officer” with the Chico Police Department is on a mission to recover stolen bikes.

 

National

Great idea. An Albuquerque microbrewery is collecting bike parts for a local community bike shop by offering a discount for each part you bring in — or a free draft for a complete bike.

Several bike companies in New Mexico have joined forces to create a one-of-a-kind bicycle that will be raffled off to benefit an organization that supports transgender rights.

A Colorado bike rider describes a driver making an unsafe pass on the wrong side of the road, nearly hitting him head-on, and well within the state’s three-foot passing distance. And tells the driver to never do that again, because “We don’t need more Ghost Bikes…”

The current owner of a San Antonio, Texas bike shop once owned by a fallen bicyclist struggles to accept the slap on the wrist given the drunk driver who killed him. Cases like this send a clear message that driving drunk and killing another human being is really no big deal. And the lives of people on bicycles don’t matter.

A Dallas writer tries out an Italian robotic bike fit machine, and concludes that a real human can do a much better job.

The New York Daily News takes the outgoing mayor to task for the carnage on the streets and the failure of the city’s Vision Zero, as traffic deaths have risen to the highest level since the program was adopted in 2014.

Frank Ocean is one of us, proudly riding his Van Moof ebike through the streets of New York.

A alleged Pittsburgh bike thief died after police tased him at least five times because he kept getting up to plead that he didn’t do anything. There’s no excuse for stealing a bike. But it shouldn’t call for the death penalty.

A kindhearted Florida cop gave a 13-year old boy his first bicycle, after learning the kid had to walk miles every day to get to and from school. And his mother walked twice as far after walking each way with him, and returning home on her own.

 

International

Cycling News explains the different types of bikes, and offers advice on how to pick the right one for you.

An English man was the victim of a violent bike theft when a group of young thieves attacked him with a metal pipe as he rode along a towpath, stealing his $4,800 Trek mountain bike and leaving him with multiple injuries to his arm, wrist and back.

You’ve got to be kidding. A court in the UK absolved a driver with a long history of speeding tickets of her latest speeding charge, after accepting her claim that she had no choice but to speed to pass a nearly invisible bike rider, whose helmet was the only thing she could see. Because evidently, slowing down until it was safe to pass just wasn’t an option. Never mind waiting until you can actually see who you’re trying to pass. 

A 60-year old British man pled guilty to killing two men riding their bikes when he plowed into them on a straight road with a 60 mph speed limit; the victims owned a company that put on sportives and charity rides.

A writer in Brussels takes advantage of the pandemic to overcome his fears and start riding a bike after 20 years in the city.

 

Competitive Cycling

Prosecutors call for a slap in the wrist for the woman who allegedly caused a mass crash by holding up a sign in the first stage of the Tour de France, asking the court for just a four month suspended sentence.

Podium Cafe looks back to when legendary chanteuse Josephine Baker “sprinkled her stardust” on the pre-war Tour de France. Baker also acted as an Allied spy during the Nazi occupation of France.

Thirty-year old Katie Keough unexpectedly called it a career after more than a dozen years as a pro ‘cross cyclist, most recently competing as a guest rider for LA-based L39ION of Los Angeles.

The first-ever edition of L39ION of Los Angeles founder Justin Williams’ new Into the Lion’s Den cycling race, scheduled for Sacramento at the end of this month, will feature a new format with teams competing for their home cities.

 

Finally…

Nothing like helping a stranger fix his handlebars, only to realize it’s your own stolen bike. How to make your own DIY airless bike tires.

And that feeling when you get in over your head — almost literally — and lose your bike in the process.

………

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

Another LA councilmember indicted for bribery, Claremont clarifies apparent bike ban, and bike riders get Gavined again

My apologies for the recent unexcused absences. 

You know I’m having a bad night when I post an explanation for why I won’t be posting something that day.

A really bad night is when I don’t manage to post anything at all. 

……..

The beat goes on at LA City Hall, where yet another councilmember has been indicted for bribery.

Longtime LA-area politician Mark Ridley-Thomas was indicted for allegedly bribing a former dean at USC to admit a family member into a graduate program while he was serving on the LA County Board of Supervisors, before getting elected to the city council after he was termed out by the county.

He is the third current or former councilmember to be indicted for bribery in recent years, although Mitch Englander was convicted of receiving bribes, and Jose Huizar charged with doing the same.

And that doesn’t include CD12 City Councilmember John Lee, who remains on the council, despite reportedly figuring prominently in the bribery charge and conviction of his predecessor.

Maybe that’s our problem.

Maybe we need to take up a collection to bribe a few councilmembers, so bikes can get their attention for a change.

Meanwhile, the New York Times looks at the redistricting controversy that could send recently elected CD4 Councilmember Nithya Raman to represent the San Fernando Valley, where no one voted for her, while disenfranchising  her current district and leaving them without the bike, pedestrian and transit-friendly representative they voted for.

………

Claremont has apparently learned the error of their ways, correcting a badly worded draft ordinance that could have been read to ban bicycles on at least one street, in violation of state law.

Credit Erik Griswold with sounding the alarm.

………

Evidently, we’ve been Gavined again.

Streetsblog reports Governor Newsom vetoed AB 1147, which would have required better data and analysis regarding greenhouse gas reductions, while calling on Caltrans to develop a pilot program of branded bicycle highways.

He apparently wielded his overactive veto pen out of spite because the bill’s author, Laura Friedman, blocked Newsom’s $7.6 billion transportation bill in a dispute over what segments of high speed rail to fund first.

And no, I don’t know what a “branded” bicycle highway is, either.

On the other hand, Newsom did sign AB 773, which will make it easier to make Slow Streets permanent, as well as partially or completely closing streets for al fresco dining.

He also signed Friedman’s AB 43, which will allow cities to lower speed limits, but not until July 1st, 2024.

And Newsom signed SB 69, which will shut down the state’s “the defunct and bankrupt North Coast Railroad Authority,” and transition it to the Great Redwood Trail Agency, which will be charged establishing a rail trail through the redwoods along California’s North Coast.

………

We’ve been following the case of the coal-rolling, 16-year old Texas driver who slammed into six bicyclists on a training ride in Waller County, and trying to read through the lines to figure out why the kid wasn’t charged on the spot.

We don’t have to wonder anymore.

Erik Griswold forwarded a powerful blog post from the Houston lawyer representing the victims from earlier this month, which has somehow gone unreported in the media.

Our 6 clients are suffering from horrible injuries including broken vertebrae, cervical and lumbar spinal injuries, broken collar bones, hands, and wrists- many of which require surgical intervention- as well as multiple traumatic brain injuries, lacerations, soft tissue damage, road rash, and extensive bruising. And those are just the physical injuries.

The driver of the black F-250 that crushed our clients’ bodies and left them and their bikes splashed and scattered across the roadway is a 16 year old Waller, Texas male. Through our own investigation, we’ve learned his name, his address, the names of his parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents, neighbors and family friends. We know the names of the businesses owned and operated by the driver’s family. We know where he was earlier in the day, prior to crashing into our clients while they were more than 70 miles into their USAT tri-club training ride. We know the identity of his passenger (a local 17 year old male from a neighboring town) and a pretty good idea about the role he may have played in causing the crash that sent ALL of our clients to the hospital; 2 by Life Flight, 2 by ambulance, 2 by personal transport…

The driver’s family’s connections in Waller are a legitimate reason for concern, but I know that Charlie and Peter are very well versed in handling the challenges that nepotism can create.

They go on to add this —

The backdrop of the Waller Bike Crash is one riddled with anti-bike bias. Charlie knows all too well as he has recent experiences with judges there, one who actually lamented to him that Waller, TX “doesn’t like [our] kind.” Charlie has formerly represented several cyclists who were targeted and ticketed by Waller police over the last couple of years…This advocacy includes exposing and fighting against those who choose to selectively enforce the law for only a select few.

Our clients are not only hostages to the truck driver’s behavior and their own broken bodies, but also to a criminal process that is supposed to help make them “whole” again in a place that “doesn’t like [their] kind.”

Which reads like a perfect example of saying something without saying it.

Without mentioning the names of the driver’s family members, or their social, financial and/or official positions, the post makes it very clear he’s part of, and protected by, a powerful family in the country.

And that achieving justice in the face of the county’s extreme anti-bike bias will be an uphill climb.

It’s definitely worth a click to read the whole thing.

………

Streetsblog reports that Norwalk is beginning work on a bicycle master plan.

Thanks to Joe Linton for the heads-up.

………

LADOT offers a quick look at last Sunday’s CicLAvia.

………

That feeling when you win the Nobel, but have no use for the prime parking spot that comes with it.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for forwarding the tweets.

………

Kermet is one of us, too.

But then, we already knew that.

And yes, that’s something to sing about.

………

A UK bike advocacy group celebrates one of the country’s most celebrated bike illustrators.

………

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

No bias here. A British mayor complains he’s been abused for trying to stop “silly cyclists” from getting killed riding recklessly after dark.

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

A 41-year old man faces charges for running over a 12-year old girl with his bike as she was walking to school in Corona, then stripping naked and making lewd comments; he was arrested as he rode naked past students arriving for school.

Rome, New York police are looking for an ax-wielding, bike-riding robber who made off with a 14-year old boy’s bicycle after threatening to chop his head off.

………

Local

LA is taking another step towards creating a continuous bikeway along the LA River, with plans to close a 2.9-mile gap in the San Fernando Valley.

A letter writer takes the LA Times to task for publishing an op-ed from a homeless advocate complaining about a bike rider who loudly objected to two men blocking the LA River bike path to comfort a homeless man, comparing it to a post on Nextdoor. Ouch.

Santa Monica-based Bird announced a new, integrated smart sidewalk protection technology designed to keep users from illegally riding the company’s e-scooters on sidewalks.

While Los Angeles tries to redefine what “Complete Streets” means to include sort-of, semi-complete streets, Culver City is busy building the real thing with a Complete Streets makeover of Washington Boulevard, including dedicated bike and bus lanes connecting downtown to the city’s E Line, nee Expo, station.

LA County Sheriff’s deputies disproportionately stop, search and handcuff Black people in the Antelope Valley, apparently for the crime of walking, biking or driving while Black.

 

State

Streetsblog complains about Gavin Newsom’s “deeply disappointing” vetos of bills to legalize Stop and Yield for bike riders and decriminalize jaywalking, saying the governor relied on flawed data.

A San Mateo letter writer complains about “confiscating” parking spaces from low income, working class neighborhoods, calling it callous and punitive. Evidently, she’s unaware that poor and working class people ride bicycles, too — many as their only form of transportation.

A letter writer from Northern California’s Plumas County makes the case for bike lanes, noting that he’s 60 year old and rides a bike 60 to 70 miles a week to stave off congestive heart failure. But we all know bike lanes only benefit young, healthy adults. Right?

 

National

America Walks will offer a webinar tomorrow on how to take on harmful jaywalking laws. Just a tad too late for those of us in California, though.

Now you, too, can build your own ebike with fat, low profile wheels intended for custom cars.

KC bike and pedestrian advocates called for safety improvements after a man was killed by two separate hit-and-run drivers while leaving Sunday’s Kansas City Chiefs game.

Kindhearted cops in Jasper, Texas raised funds to buy an adaptive bicycle for a 12-year old special needs girl.

Life is cheap in San Antonio, where a 70-year old woman will serve a lousy ten days behind bars and another hundred on house arrest for the drunk driving death of a bike rider.

Evidently, things are no better in Chicago than the Antelope Valley, where bike riders in predominantly Black neighborhoods are eight times more likely to be ticketed than riders in mostly white neighborhoods.

New York Senator Chuck Schumer promises to deliver for the Deliveristas, promising federal infrastructure funds to build rest areas for New York delivery riders, as they band together to protect their own safety.

A paralyzed former Army Ranger living in Virginia has made it his mission to provide adaptive bicycles for paralyzed and disabled children and veterans.

 

International

A British Columbia drunk driver was 2.5 times over the legal alcohol limit when he killed a bike rider, after texting a woman he was arguing with that he was going to get fucked up. And did, apparently.

The theft of high-end bikes continues in London’s Richmond Park, as machete-wielding thieves on motor scooters attacked a man and made off with his nearly $8,000 bike, the fourth such theft this week. Note to self: Don’t ride in Richmond Park.

Evidently, parking in bike lanes isn’t just an American thing, as a London bike rider snapped a photo showing at least seven drivers parked in one.

An English bike rider credits his helmet with saving his life — not from a collision, but when a brick wall collapsed on him as he was riding by. So always wear your helmet 24/7, on or off your bike, just in case.

After British bike riders ridicule a ridiculously short ten-foot bike lane, county officials contend it’s not really a bike lane, but just bike markings and parallel stripes on the pavement. Which is kind of what a bike lane is.

Does anyone really need the new Van Moof ebike that can do 37 mph? That would make it a motorcycle under California law, requiring a helmet, driver’s license and license plate.

A Turkish woman has taught 72 women to ride bikes in just the last five months, in an area where it’s not considered inappropriate for a woman to ride a bike. Which implies that there are places in the country where it is.

 

Competitive Cycling

A 31-year old woman is set to face charges of causing involuntary injuries and endangering others for causing a mass crash on the opening stage of this year’s Tour de France, by holding a handwritten sign reading Allez Opi-Omi — go grandma and grandpa — in front of the peloton.

Four-time Tour de France champ Chris Froome says he still dreams of getting a record-tying fifth win. Someone who shall not be named once won seven Tour de France titles, before unwinning them by doping.

Legendary cyclist Eddy Merckx says Slovenia’s Tadej Pogačar has the potential to do even better than he did. Which is saying something, since Merckx is generally considered the greatest of all time.

American Olympic bronze medalist Emma White announced her retirement at the ripe old age of 24, just days after winning this year’s Sea Otter Classic.

 

Finally…

That feeling when your neighborhood is closed to kids, because cars. Note to paramedics — don’t leave the damn keys in the ambulance.

And, um, well…

………

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

Blaming micromobility victims in New York, accusations of bias in Texas coal-roll crash, and School Streets kicks off in LA

Before we start, I hope you’ll join me in welcoming noted San Diego bike lawyer Richard Duquette as our newest sponsor. 

I’ve known Duquette for some time, after connecting over some particularly egregious bike cases from San Diego and Orange Counties, as well as Riverside and Imperial Counties. Along with the advice he’s shared on topics from staying safe on the road, to how to find a good lawyer if you don’t.

I’m happy to have him join our roster of Los Angeles-area sponsors, all of whom I have personally vetted, to provide access to effective legal counsel throughout the SoCal region.

……..

The New York Times clutches its pearls over the rise in micromobility, noting that ridership surged 130 percent to 88.5 million in 2019, from just 38.5 million the year before.

But instead of celebrating the relative safety and convenience of e-scooters and other electric mobility devices, they choose to focus on people acting like, well, people.

Along with the human cost.

Still, the e-mobility boom has brought significant safety challenges to New York’s already congested streets. At least 17 people have been killed while riding electric mobility vehicles this year, according to city officials. Revel, which operates an electric moped share program in the city, voluntarily shut it down for a month last year after three riders were killed.

E-mobility crashes have also killed three pedestrians this year, including the actress Lisa Banes, who was knocked down by a hit-and-run scooter rider on the Upper West Side.

Many pedestrians and cyclists complain about e-bike and e-scooter riders who speed, ride on sidewalks and run red lights and go the wrong way on streets.

Although if they think e-scooters pose a risk to pedestrians, just wait until they hear about cars.

But let’s be honest.

It doesn’t take a lot of observation to realize that people do stupid things, whether they are driving cars, riding bikes, walking or piloting scooters.

And while all of those can pose a risk to others, it’s the people in cars who do the most damage.

Yes, reckless riding on a scooter is stupid, and dangerous — to the rider and those around them.

But it’s far from the biggest danger on the streets.

Meanwhile, Streetsblog responded by accusing the paper of victim blaming and trying to push people back into cars.

………

No surprise here.

The law firm representing six bicyclists injured by a coal-rolling teenager in Waller County, Texas while training for a triathlon says the entire investigation of the crash has been “riddled with anti-bike bias.”

Then again, that was obvious the moment police allowed the 16-year old driver to go home with his parents instead of pressing charges.

Or even issuing a damn ticket.

Meanwhile, the local DA made it clear he doesn’t want to take the heat.

“This case was not handled appropriately by the investigating agency. PERIOD,” Mathis wrote in a Facebook post. “Despite being encouraged by the Texas Department of Public Safety to treat the scene as a crime scene and to contact the D.A.‘s Office for advice on how to proceed, the investigating agency chose not to do so.”

Then there’s this, providing the first public clue as to why the kid appears to have been handled with kid gloves.

The attorneys say the 16-year-old was “coal rolling” the cyclists shortly before plowing into them, and said the teen’s connections to Waller County officials were the reason he was allowed to leave the scene after being questioned.

On Monday, Mathis acknowledged these connections, but added that investigators have yet to “see evidence of a city official directing the officer on the scene as to how to handle this particular situation.”

Although chances are, in a small county like that, no one had to tell the cops on the scene who the kid was.

Especially after mom and dad showed up.

………

Now that’s more like it.

Los Angeles is closing a section of Westmoreland Ave to cars as part of the School Streets pilot program.

https://twitter.com/_KennyUong_/status/1447703817630322689

………

Everyone knows there’s no point in reinventing the wheel.

Which may be why automakers keep insisting on reinventing the bicycle, instead.

https://twitter.com/dorfman_baruch/status/1447790128882200576

………

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

No bias here. A Virginia letter writer complains that the area needs more more roads for cars, not bike lanes. But he can’t seem to decide if bike riders are lawbreaking, uninsured and unlicensed scofflaws, or children pedaling on toys around their own neighborhoods.

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

An Oregon man faces an attempted murder charge for stabbing a car passenger in an apparent road rage incident, which began when he started throwing rocks at the victim’s car.

………

Local

Coffee, pastries, gravel, ocean views, bbq and beer. What’s not to like?

Spectrum News 1 checks in on Sunday’s return of CicLAvia to DTLA.

Pasadena now has an extra $462,900 to spend on DUI checkpoints, distracted driving enforcement, and bike and pedestrian safety operations, courtesy of a state grant. What, they couldn’t round up and make in an even $463,000 for some reason? Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up. 

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey is one of us, taking his roadie for a ride through the ‘Bu on Sunday.

 

State

California Congressman Jimmy Panetta says it’s disappointing that the proposed federal ebike tax credit was cut in half in a House committee, but it’s still a start. Disappointing doesn’t begin to describe it, especially when e-car buyers get ten times the $750 tax credit they’re planning to offer ebike buyers. 

An eight-year old Santa Maria girl was hospitalized after a truck driver crashed into her bicycle with enough force to break it in half; no word on her condition.

The New York Times’ California Today newsletter looks at San Francisco’s Clement Street commercial district as a local example of the 15-minute city, where everything you need on a daily basis is just 15 minutes away, without setting foot in a car.

 

National

Specialized is recalling all of their Tarmac SL7 road bikes due to the risk of steerer tube failure. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

A writer for Outside finds joy again on her ebike, after getting a life-changing medical diagnosis.

When you’re tired of fixing flats, just build your own airless bike tires.

Portland should have a new 475-foot bike and pedestrian bridge over I-84 next summer, named for the city’s bike-friendly Congressman Earl Blumenauer. It’s an odd choice for a name since he isn’t dead or retired, which is usually the primary requirement to get something named after you.

A member of Colorado’s Pyramid Lake Paiute tribe wants you to acknowledge the land you’re riding on, and the ancestors who were there first. Once again, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you. 

Topeka, Kansas is doing the right thing, giving away over 700 decommissioned bikes from the city’s former bikeshare program, rather than tossing them on the scrapheap, as too often happens.

Evidently, bike thieves have a heart in New Hampshire, where a woman got her stolen bike back after she posted a note asking for its return.

Tragic news from New York, where an ebike rider was killed by a wrong way driver while riding in a bike lane that had recently been downgraded from a protected lane, because drivers couldn’t resist driving over all the little car-tickler plastic bendie posts.

Hundreds of New Orleans residents Ride for their Lives to demand better safety for people on bicycles.

A Florida Good Samaritan replaced a disabled woman’s stolen adaptive trike for her birthday.

 

International

The New York Times memorializes Iohan Gueorguiev, famed as the Bike Wanderer for his six-year bikepacking quest traveling from the Arctic to Patagonia, which he documented on his YouTube channel; Gueorguiev committed suicide in August while riding out the pandemic at a friend’s home in British Columbia.

Riders on high-end bikes are being targeted in London’s Richmond Park, with at least three bike-jackings in the last six days, including pro cyclist Alexandar Richardson, who was relieved of his $13,600 bicycle.

Scotland is introducing a new campaign to promote hostels and bike tourism, inspired by the discovery of an 85-year old diary from a then 17-year old girl who toured the Highlands by bike with her two sisters.

A British man got a well-deserved year behind bars for pushing another man off his ebike after claiming it was really his, and making off with it while the victim lay unconscious in the street. Although a year seems a little light, considering he already had a 62-count rap sheet over the past 15 years.

Forbes promotes five new hosted European bike tours, starting at $3,199 for an ebike tour from Croatia to Montenegro. Or spend over five grand, and see where Slovenian cyclists Tadej Pogačar and Primož Roglič got their start.

French police are investigating the murder of a Spanish bikepacker, who was found in the roadway with several facial injuries, close to a popular cross-country bicycling route just south of Lyon on a trip that had started in the Netherlands.

He gets it. Volkswagen’s CEO says “Biking is fun, healthy and good for the environment” and a vital part of the urban mobility mix.

Good news from Afghanistan, where 38 people associated with the country’s women’s cycling team have reached asylum in Switzerland, with help from international cycling’s governing body.

Japan belatedly decides that sensor-operated automatic braking systems on cars should avoid killing bike riders, too. But gives carmakers three years to keep doing it.

Malaysian prosecutors aren’t giving up, filing yet another appeal to a higher court after charges were dismissed against a woman for killing eight teenage kids riding modified basikal lajak bicycles.

 

Competitive Cycling

Prior to this year, only three cyclists had ever won Il Lombardia and the Tour de France in the same season — Fausto Coppi, Eddy Merckx and Bernard Hinault. Now you can make that four, after 23-year old Tadej Pogačar accomplished the rare feat last weekend.

Hats off to 22-year old triathlete Chris Nikic, who became the first athlete with Down syndrome to complete an Ironman competition.

Colorado authorities belatedly identified the mountain biker who died during this year’s Leadville Trail 100, reporting he was killed by blunt force trauma to his chest, supporting the theory that he crashed at high speed.

 

Finally…

A business writer says it’s always the right time to get on your bike and think — or dictate your column while on a 426-mile fundraising ride. That feeling when you overstate the amount of your bike and pedestrian grant by a mere ten times.

And apparently, bicyclists don’t pay road tax. Or boat tax, either.

………

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

Bike riders Gavined by governor’s veto pen, rude writer confronts rude rider, and bad Claremont proposal threatens bikes

We’ve been Gavined.

We’re only a few years removed from when Jerry Brown became a verb meaning a too close pass, after he vetoed legislation establishing a three-foot passing law.

Twice.

It took a third try, and a vastly weakened law, to get it past Brown’s overactive veto pen.

Now Gavin Newsom is trying to take his place by irrationally vetoing bike and pedestrian safety laws.

Consider this statement that accompanied his veto of the Safety Stop Bill, otherwise known as the Idaho Stop or Stop as Yield, which has gone into effect in several other states without an accompanying jump in carnage.

And note, there’s no bike in carnage, but there’s sure all hell a car.

While I share the author’s intent to increase bicyclist safety, I am concerned this bill will have the opposite effect. The approach in AB 122 may be especially concerning for children, who may not know how to judge vehicle speeds or exercise the necessary caution to yield to traffic when appropriate.

Fatalities and serious injuries have been on the rise on the state’s roads since 2010. The Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System shows that, since 2015, there were 3,059 crashes involving bicycles at an intersection in which the primary collision factor was failure to stop at a stop sign. The data indicates bicyclists were determined to be at fault for 88 percent of the collisions resulting in fatalities and 63 percent of those involving injuries.

So let’s be clear.

Few, if any, legitimate sources use that 88% figure; most researchers find fault either evenly divided, or drivers at fault for most crashes involving bike riders.

While it’s a useful tool, the Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System, better knows as SWITRS, is hardly the most reliable source. SWITRS depends on voluntary self-reporting by law enforcement agencies, which results in most, but not all, serious collisions being reported.

It is also dependent on the CHP and other law enforcement agencies with their infamous windshield bias and lack of adequate training in bike law.

And never mind that of those 3,059 collisions at intersections where someone failed to stop at a stop sign, it wasn’t necessarily the person on the bike who failed to stop.

Drivers blow through stop signs at least as frequently as people on bikes, and with far more deadly results.

And as we’ve said many times before, even the most reckless bike rider is primarily a danger to him or herself, while a reckless driver is a danger to everyone around them.

Not to mention Gavin also killed a very good law decriminalizing crossing the damn street, for similarly specious reasons — despite clear evidence that it has resulted in biased police enforcement against people of color.

Although to his credit, he did sign a bill that allows the first small steps towards weakening the deadly 85th Percentile Rule and lowering speed limits.

So maybe Gavined should be the new term for irrationally rejecting bike and pedestrian safety rules.

Or maybe that’s what we’ll call it when someone gets a ticket for otherwise safely rolling a stop sign or crossing the street mid-block, which would have been legal under the laws he rejected.

Or both.

Because we had high hopes that California would finally take a long-delayed rational step forward to make it safer and easier to get around without a car.

But instead, we got Gavined.

In today’s photo, a family takes a break on the front plaza of LAPD headquarters during yesterday’s CicLAvia in Downtown Los Angeles.

And my apologies for the lack of attribution for the people who sent me links for today’s post. Too be honest, it’s nearly 5:30 am as I finish this, and I’m just too damn tired to go back and see who sent what. But I thank you, and truly appreciate the help!

……..

A worker with a homeless organization complains about a rude bike rider on the LA River bike path, in an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times.

He was standing on the pathway, comforting a homeless man who’s longtime partner had just died, when a man on a bike yelled at them to get out of the path.

These were the circumstances when you, spandex-clad and biking south along the river, yelled at the three of us to get out of the path, to which I responded with a predictable vulgarity.

I was surprised when you returned to insist that I apologize for my foul language and for forcing you to shift lanes. You seemed genuinely certain you were the injured party, and I imagined you carrying that for the rest of the day — telling your friends about the confrontation, using it as an example of our ongoing civilizational decline…

Things shouldn’t be like this. I took your behavior as evidence that you, like many of my neighbors, view unhoused people exclusively as nuisances, similar to bad traffic on the 5 or our most recent oat milk shortage.

As usual, though, we’re only hearing one side of the story.

Undoubtedly, the man on the bicycle would see things differently; he had no way of knowing about the death of the homeless man’s partner.

But based on what we’ve been told by the author of the piece, it would seem like they were both wrong.

He could, and should, have moved the homeless man off the pathway to avoid blocking a path used by countless people every day. It’s likely that the two people comforting a homeless man blocked more of the path than he realized.

The bike rider could have also held his tongue as he rode past, assuming there was enough room to get by. Yes, it’s annoying when people stand on a bike path. But that’s what people do.

And sometimes, as in this case, there’s a reason for it.

The author also could have responded without swearing at the bike rider, which seems uncalled for under the circumstances.

So what we’re left with is two people behaving badly, and one whining about it in the pages of the Times.

Neither of whom seem very sympathetic in the retelling.

………

Eric Griswold calls our attention to a very badly worded motion before the Claremont city council that could ban bikes from one or more surface streets, in violation of state law.

So just to be clear, under California state law, bike riders have all the rights and responsibilities of motorists, and must be allowed on any public street where cars are allowed, with the exception of some limited access highways.

While some cities have tried to ban bikes from certain roadways, it’s questionable whether it can be legally enforced. Although fighting it could mean taking it to the state appeals courts, which is a slow and costly process.

So let’s hope Claremont takes another look at this wording, and sends it back for a rewrite.

And maybe gets a new law firm for the next draft.

………

Sunday marked the return of CicLAvia to DTLA, exactly 11 years to the day after the first one.

And yes, a good time was had by all.

Even our very own BikinginLA intern, who not only experienced her first CicLAvia, but also took her first pedicab ride.

Not to mention her second. And loved every minute of it, thanks to our very kind and friendly driver.

We also had a chance to talk corgis, bikes and city finances with the man who may just be LA’s next city controller.

Maybe he could put his own corgis to work sniffing out financial irregularities at city hall.

https://twitter.com/kennethmejiaLA/status/1447365863363923969

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Show this tweet the next time someone complains about bike lanes in front of businesses.

Then wait for the inevitable “Yeah, but this isn’t Madrid.”

………

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

An editor with Esquire wants us to feel sorry for him for getting his first traffic ticket in 30 years for right-hooking a bike rider who came off the sidewalk “out of nowhere.” Evidently, though, the cops understood that no one ever comes out of nowhere if drivers are paying attention, even if he doesn’t.

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

There’s a special place in hell for the man who brutally attacked an 18-year old woman in South Los Angeles as she was walking with her young brother, stealing about 30 bucks before making off on a bicycle.

New York police are looking for a bike-riding man who shouted a racist comment at an Asian woman before bumping her with his bike.

………

Local

All five candidates to replace pseudo-environmentalist, bike lane-blocking, thankfully termed out CD5 City Councilmember Paul Koretz will participate in an online debate on mobility on October 25th, sponsored by Streets for All.

Congratulations to LA’s Silver Lake neighborhood, which is officially the world’s 14th coolest neighborhood.

This is who we share the road with. A man was beaten to death by bystanders after using his car as a weapon to intentionally crash into several people on a sidewalk when he was tossed from a Hawthorne business, then crashed into a building as he tried to get away, only to be pulled from his car and killed by members of the crowd he attacked

Not everyone turned out for CicLAvia on Sunday, as some people took part in the return of the bike ride on the course of the Long Beach Marathon. Although I suspect some people did both.

 

State

An Orange County woman got her stolen bike back a day later, after cruising the neighborhood with her dog until she spotted a man riding it, and the police in Santa Ana recovered it for her.

Cycling Tips looks at Day Two of this year’s Sea Otter Classic.

Moving piece from a Berkeley publicly funded paper about the 81-year old retired firefighter who died of a heart attack while riding his bike last week.

The San Francisco Chronicle examines the lack of equity for two San Francisco drivers who killed two bike-riding women in separate crashes on the same night; one driver got a lousy 16 days behind bars, while the other has been held in county jail for five years on $10 million bail, without ever getting a hearing.

 

National

Treehugger says US ebike sales are up a whopping 240%.

How to repurpose old wheelbarrows to build your own DIY bike trailer.

Chicago residents petition to restore a Slow Street, after the city continues its campaign to remove them.

In a major traffic collision, an eight-year old Ohio girl was riding her bicycle when she was struck by a 10-year old boy and 8-year old girl in a pony cart, spilling them all.

Two hundred Massachusetts bike riders turned out turned out to honor the sacrifices of police and firefighters who gave their lives to protect the public.

Bicycling rates continue to rise in the Big Apple, with a 33% jump in weekday ridership.

Jersey City NJ bike riders are getting the secure bike parking we all need with a Black and Brown-owned Brooklyn-based startup that provides customizable bike storage pods that can fit in a single parking space. Let’s hope they come here to SoCal soon.

Woody Harrelson is one of us, riding a bike around DC shortly after punching a drunk man at the Watergate Hotel, who allegedly lunged at him when Harrelson asked him to delete photos of him and his daughter. .

 

International

Birmingham, England announced a transformative plan to cut motor vehicle use by requiring drivers to use a ring road, rather than allowing them to drive across the city, while introducing a fleet of zero-emission cross-city buses and additional protected bike lanes.

Oh, bother. Local residents agree on protecting England’s Hundred Acre Wood, made famous by Winnie-the-Pooh, Eeyore and Piglet et al, though there’s less agreement on whether to allow bicycles. Although something tells me Pooh would welcome bikes.

Nice story from the UK, where YouTube BMX star Zak Jones gave a young boy with autism a new bike after meeting him at a skate park, when the boy, who had never ridden a bicycle, decided to become a cycling star like Jones.

It takes a major schmuck to borrow a Kenyan boy’s bicycle, then turn around and sell it.

Life is really cheap in Malaysia, where an appeals court confirmed that a driver got a walk for killing eight — yes, eight — teenagers on the customized bikes known as basikal lajak. And she got her driver’s license back, too. I don’t care who you are, it takes major recklessness to crash into eight people on bicycles with enough force to kill them all.

Covid is delaying construction of a Sydney, Australia bikeway, as “snobbish” and “narrow minded” residents work to stop it.

Australian actor Samuel Johnson is one of us, possibly to his regret, after permanently losing his sense of smell when he was struck by a driver while riding his bike.

 

Competitive Cycling

Slovenian cyclist Tadej Pogacar won the Il Lombardia classic, in the final race on this year’s WorldTour calendar.

Pink Bike offers a photo essay from the Red Bull Rampage, calling it the greatest show on earth.

British sprinting star Mark Cavendish turned up at the women’s Tour of Britain to speak out in support of women’s cycling.

Congratulations to SoCal’s own Coryn Rivera, who is now Coryn Labecki, after getting married and moving to a new team.

American BMX cyclist Connor Fields crash in the Tokyo Olympics left him with a serious traumatic brain injury and memory loss, raising questions about whether he can recover enough to compete again.

 

Finally…

That feeling when your new low-end e-mountain bike is okay for everything, except riding mountains. Who needs the Batmobile when you’ve got a turbo-charged bicycle?

And clearly, dooring is nothing new.

………

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

Bike rider allegedly murdered by driver while trespassing on San Diego horse ranch; 16th bike death in SD County

Horrific news from San Diego, where a man on a bike died up to a week after he was intentionally run down with an SUV.

The victim was reportedly trespassing on a horse ranch near the Mexican border on Monday, September 27th, when the owner’s adult son used his car as a weapon to slam into him with enough force to shatter his bicycle.

Allegedly, of course.

According to OnScene TV, the victim was a former worker on the Tijuana Valley ranch, who had reportedly been barred from the property.

The son gave chase in a Kia SUV, crashing into him at a high rate of speed, before losing control and smashing into bollards on the side of the dirt road.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was rushed to Mercy Hospital with major injuries, where he died sometime on or before October 5th.

The driver also suffered serious injuries, and had to be extricated from his vehicle.

Video from the scene suggests the crash occurred on Rancho La Palma, at 2325 Hollister Street in San Diego.

This is at least the 54th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 16th that I’m aware of in San Diego County.

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

Warning, this video shows the driver being removed from the SUV and placed on a backboard. So be sure you want to see that before clicking on it. 

 

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