School is back in session almost everywhere now.
So be especially careful riding around schools, particularly at times when parents are dropping off or picking up children. Someone passing by on a bike is likely to be the last thing they’re looking for in the mad rush to get back to their school routine.
Keep your fingers crossed.
Despite seeing countless reports of cycling collisions throughout the U.S. and around the world — just a handful of which you’ll find below — I haven’t gotten any news of serious cycling incidents in the SoCal area.
I always hold my breath on three day weekends — the 4th of July was particularly bad. And sometimes, it takes a few days for news to filter in, as the press returns to work and police reports slowly leak out.
But in this case, no news really is good news.
Dj Wheels reports that motions to dismiss or reduce the charges against Patrick Roraff, the teenage driver accused of killing pro cyclist Jorge Alvarado while street racing in April of last year, have been denied.
However, he still gets to travel to Texas to play soccer with his teammates, 17 months after his alleged victim was run down.
Meanwhile, Long Beach Fire Captain John Hines faces a preliminary hearing today in an Orange County courtroom for critically injuring a cyclist in an allegedly drunken Seal Beach hit-and-run. Maybe he’ll meet Renato Demartino, who is scheduled for a hearing today in the same courthouse; he’s accused in the Tustin hit-and-run death of cyclist Marco Acuapan last April, four months after Demartino allegedly ran him down.
I wonder what they would talk about.
New bike lanes hit the pavement on First Street in Boyle Heights. Meanwhile, Zeke’s L.A.-based brother Dave reports that work has begun on new bike lanes on Cahuenga Blvd from Franklin to near the Hollywood Bowl; eventually, they should reach all the way to Lankershim.
But don’t hold your breath.
Damien Newton wants your questions for bike lawyer Howard Krepack. The next meeting of the nearly named group to re-envision North Figueroa as a Complete Street takes place at 7 pm on Friday, September 9th at Flying Pigeon Bike Shop, 3714 North Figueroa. New signs pop up urging cyclists to share the L.A. River Bike Path with pedestrians in Elysian Valley. Santa Monica’s Ocean Park Blvd should soon be a significantly greener — and bike-friendlier — street. Santa Monica Spoke invites you to RSVP for dinner, bikes and cupcakes with Elly Blue. A driver reports hitting a bike in the HOV lane on the 10 Freeway in Baldwin Park, but no word on whether it was being ridden or just laying in the lane; we’ll hope for the latter.
HuffPo offers more than your daily dose of celebs on bikes; thanks to Rex Reese for the heads-up. Cyclists and motorists owe each other respect. According to Tucson Velo, a driver accused of hitting and killing a cyclist had previous DUI arrests; nice work keeping a dangerous driver on the streets until he finally killed someone. Tour de Fat draws 12,000 cyclists in my hometown of Fort Collins CO; it will be here on October 8th. After an Idaho boy’s new bike is stolen, replacement offers pour in. A Missoula cyclist is found dead on the sidewalk in an apparent solo collision; of course, as cyclists know but police can’t seem to figure out, you don’t have to actually hit a rider to cause a cycling collision. A Minnesota triathlete dies one month after a mountain biking accident in Colorado. A Vermont cyclist died after bypassing barriers closing a road damaged by Hurricane Irene; seriously people, when the road is closed, there may be a reason for it. A New York cyclist is killed after running a red light; that’s why you don’t do that, people. Cyclists open fire near the nation’s capitol; thanks to DC for the heads-up. A 75-year old Florida cyclist is killed by an 84-year old driver in a SMIDSY;* fortunately for the driver, failure to see your victim is the universal Get Out of Jail Free Card — especially in Florida.
Toronto Streets should be a delight, not a hospital waiting room. The Cycling Embassy of Great Britain officially takes flight; now the hard work begins. Progress is slow on London’s cycling revolution. Potholes in Sheffield UK threaten that city’s bid to host a stage of the Tour de France. Great bike art from Dublin. Instead of making the roads safer, Aussie authorities idiotically consider making hi-vis vests mandatory for all cyclists; maybe that way drivers will finally see the riders they run down. Another pro team bites the dust, as the Scheck brothers’ Leopard-Trek team merges with Team RadioShack and a bunch of riders prepare to get the boot. Investigation shows pro cyclist Riccardo Ricco gave himself a botched transfusion. A Chinese banking official is held for killing a cyclist while driving drunk.
Finally, David Hembrow reads L.A.’s new bike plan, finds it critically lacking and concludes we’re being fed a line. And the Economist says America is no place for cyclists, with a few notable exceptions.*Sorry Mate I Didn’t See You.