Morning Links: Unannounced Orange Line bike path closure, Go Human in the wild, and still more legal cases

Grab some java and get comfortable. We’ve got a lot to catch up on today.

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Your tax dollars at work.

Frequent contributor danger d sends word that the Orange Line bike path has been closed with no advance warning. And at one of the most inconvenient, if not dangerous, points.

Here’s the complaint he filed with the county, which seems to be responsible for the unannounced closure, since Metro denied having anything to do with it.

The bike path on Victory Blvd. From Woodley Ave to the 405 is fenced off. There was no notice of closure and traffic is rerouted to the street. Very Unsafe. NOT VISION ZERO. THIS IS THE ONLY WAY UNDER THE 405 FREEWAY THAT IS OFF STREET.

When will this reopen? Why is this path closed?

He hasn’t gotten a response yet; we’ll let you know if he does. And there’s no mention of it on the county map of bike path closures as of Sunday night.

Then again, there’s no mention of any of the other closures shown on their map, either.

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We mentioned recently that SCAG, aka the Southern California Association of Governments, has developed a new ad campaign urging people to Go Human.

Now Spencer forwards a first look at one of the ads in the wild, with a message we can hope drivers take to heart.

Go Human Bus End

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Seems like we just can’t get away from court cases.

Twenty-four-year old Neil Storm Stephany will go on trial for murder Tuesday in the hit-and-run death of Shaun Eagleson last October.

According to the Orange County Register, the self-described drug counselor was high on heroin when he plowed his truck into Eagleson as he rode in a Newport Beach bike lane. Stephany hit a guard rail as attempted to flee the scene, before being arrested later that day.

Following a previous DUI in 2011, Stephany had signed a legal advisement stating that he understood he could face a murder charge if he killed someone while driving under the influence any time in the future.

Which, sadly, is exactly what happened just three years later.

He also amassed an extensive criminal record in his 24 years, including convictions for felony assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury, unlawful possession of a controlled substance, and possession with intent to sell. In addition, he is also facing a separate domestic violence charge.

Stephany faces 15 years to life if he’s convicted.

A source in Orange County tells me he has grown his hair just long enough to cover the “fuck the police” tattoo on his forehead and the swastika tattooed on the back of his head, most likely on the advice of his lawyer.

I’m also told Eagleson was a regular reader of this site.

Let’s hope his family gets the justice they deserve. And that we can get a dangerous driver off the road for a very long time.

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In an exceptionally generous offer, the judge in the case of fallen OC cyclist John Colvin offered hit-and-run driver Dylan Thomas Randluby a reduced one-year sentence in county jail; remarkably, his attorney wants to think it over.

If the case goes to trial, he faces four years in state prison.

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Evidently, life is cheap in the Bay Area.

Even though he had already been convicted and sentenced for felony hit-and-run, an Alameda County judge retroactively reduced all the charges against the driver who killed a bike-riding Chinese tourist to misdemeanors, and sentenced him to just 30 days in jail, calling it an unfortunate accident.

Since when is driving drunk and fleeing the scene of a fatal collision an accident? Judges who refuse to take traffic crimes seriously are why people continue to die on our streets. Let’s hope voters remember this case when he’s up for re-election.

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Two-time Olympic gold medalist Craig Buck is fighting for his life at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center after suffering severe head trauma in a Santa Barbara bicycling collision.

CHP investigators blame him for riding on the wrong side of the road, even though the truck that hit him has allegedly been used in a prior road rage incident involving cyclists.

Facebook page has been established to give him a thumbs-up.

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Here’s an interesting new Kickstarter project.

The TurnCycle gesture-controlled wireless bike light promises to follow your hand gestures, and convert them to LED signals to indicate turns or stops; MSN picked it as one of the best Kickstarter inventions of the month.

It has a long way to go in the next 16 days for funding, however.

Thanks to John Jancsek for the heads-up.

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Several of the top women’s cyclists have teamed together to launch Strongher, The Stage for Women Who Ride, a website and app to connect women riders with one another.

And when a pro team director went to pick up an injured cyclist at an Abu Dhabi hospital, they sent him to a psychiatrist. Although the story’s really about the kindness shown the rider by those who helped him get back to his team.

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Local

Sign up for a free 30-minute tour of the LA Times’ historic Globe Lobby during Sunday’s CicLAvia.

There is a special place in hell for someone who would punch a Pasadena nine-year old in the face to rob him as he rode his bike to school. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

Huh? A Hermosa Beach resident opposes a bike lane on Monterey Blvd because he’s sick of fiestas and volleyball tournaments, as well as bars and their patrons. And besides, most of the people who ride bikes in the city don’t live there, in his estimation. Which is kind of like saying don’t build a freeway because people who’ll drive on it are just passing through.

 

State

Santa Ana continues to become one of Orange County’s most bike and pedestrian friendly cities; all three of the active transportation projects approved for state funding in the county were in the city, out of 55 applications. Thanks to Nick Gerda for the heads-up.

The Examiner finally notices that former Corona del Mar bike advocate Frank Peters has moved to Portland, and meets with him to discuss his reasons for moving. They could have found out six months earlier by reading this site.

Firefighters rescued a mountain biker suffering from unspecified injuries from OC’s Barton Canyon on Sunday afternoon.

The San Diego Association of Governments has approved a $200 billion transportation plan that promises to continue the region’s reliance on cars.

San Diego will host Calbike’s annual California Bike Summit at the end of this month.

A woman rode 100 miles on Saturday as part of Oceanside’s sixth annual Bike the Coast just two years after having a heart transplant.

The Desert Sun endorses an environmental review of multiple routes for the Coachella Valley’s proposed 50-mile CV Link bike and pedestrian pathway. And says if Rancho Mirage still isn’t on board when the path is ready to build, then build it right up to the city’s borders on either side. I like the way they think.

Palo Alto is installing cameras to get an accurate count of how many kids are biking and walking to school.

More senseless tragedy, as a Richmond bicyclist was killed in a collision with a train after slipping through the crossing arms. And a San Francisco cyclist died after somehow getting caught between two Muni buses.

 

National

A new instagraphic from People for Bikes rebuts seven top myths about people who ride bikes. Memorize this one. It’ll come in handy when the bike haters bust out the torches and pitchforks at the next public meeting.

One sign bikes are gaining greater acceptance: There are now over 1,050 bike-friendly businesses in the US.

Bicycling offers advice on what to do when you crash your bike.

GQ provides suggestions on how to dial in your bike fit and ride the right way, as well as tips on how to get a six pack by riding your bike. Actually, that one’s easy. Step one, get on our bike. Step two, ride to the market. Step three, buy a six pack. Step four, ride home and drink it.

Seattle radio hosts say it’s pointless for the city to take over the nonprofit bikeshare system because the city is hilly. And it rains.

A Denver columnist says the city’s plan to make bicycling safer is vehicle-hostile, while laying sole claim to the streets for those on four wheels.

Chicago reaches 100 miles of protected bike lanes — or maybe not. Meanwhile, advocates call for more and better bike lanes in the city.

Memphis’ bicycle and pedestrian program manager will be honored by the White House as part of the Champions of Change program; crashes are down and ridership is up with 200 miles of bikeways in the city, and another 130 miles of bike paths on the way.

Maine cyclists call for greater enforcement of traffic laws, including ticketing other cyclists. Because it’s always other cyclists who break the law, right?

Vermont police continue to blame the victim in the death of bicycling physician, saying he was under the influence of three different antidepressants — even though police claim the driver, who was drunk and on Xanax, was passing the cyclist safely on the wrong side of the road when he suddenly made a U-turn directly in front of her. Sure, that sounds credible.

A Connecticut cyclist takes on the hills. And a green Lamborghini.

Hoboken NJ becomes the latest city to get bikeshare before Los Angeles. Yes, Hoboken.

There’s something wrong when even a Charlotte NC ghost bike isn’t safe from a reckless driver.

Nice story, as a Florida cyclist tracks down the pregnant army reservist who saved his life after a hit-and-run.

 

International

Bike Radar offers five reasons to bike to work.

A Canadian columnist is appalled by the loss of 48 rarely used parking spaces to make way for bike lanes.

Vancouver votes to move forward with what may be North America’s first bike lift. Meanwhile, more evidence there’s two sides to every story, as a Vancouver cyclist accused of a road rage assault on a pregnant woman says he was just trying to talk to her.

Caught on video: A Calgary driver honks at the cyclist ahead of him for a full 40 seconds, just for the crime of waiting for the light to change. People get pissed off when cyclists don’t stop at red lights, and more pissed off when we do.

A profile of London’s bike riding, very conservative and self-effacing mayor, who may be angling to be the next prime minister.

About 150 Amnesty International supporters rode around Brussels to protest the death penalty, visiting the embassies of the handful of countries that still allow it, including the USA.

A Helsinki driver gets four and a half years for intentionally brake-checking a cyclist in front of multiple witnesses; the rider was killed when he flew over his handlebars after hitting the back of the car, landing head-first on the pavement.

You know the bike boom is a worldwide phenomenon when the prime minister of Swaziland is calling for more bike lanes.

A South African farmer is under arrest for shooting a man on a bicycle following an argument over a first aid kit, a pillow, cap and shoe allegedly stolen from his home. Yes, he killed a man over a shoe and a pillow.

A South Korean cyclist won a 1 million won judgment against a woman after he was injured falling off his bike to avoid her dog in a bike lane. Which sounds impressive until you realize that’s the equivalent of $871.

 

Finally…

Caught on video, partly: Don’t slap a pedestrian standing in the street as you pass by on your bike, or he may get in his car and run you down. Bad enough Florida cyclists have to deal with drunk drivers, worse when the driver’s dog can’t manage to keep the car on the road.

And now you, too, can make your bike sound like a trotting horse.

But why stop there?

 

5 comments

  1. B2H says:

    I ride the Orangeline everyday to work and it’s bad enough that you have to deal with the homeless under the 405 this closure just add insult to injury.

  2. Calwatch says:

    The Orange Line bike path is not a County path since it is not in the unincorporated area nor on a flood control channel. I would blame the City of Los Angeles on this one. Call 311 to complain, and follow up with a call to your council member and the mayor’s office.

  3. thesqueak says:

    Shaun Eagleson was not killed in a bike lane. No Class II bikeway exists at the crime scene, despite the OCDA’s pronouncement in its press release; along that stretch of PCH, cyclists use the shoulder.

    Likewise, retired Chief of Police Mitch Waller was not killed in a bike lane on Laguna Canyon Road, despite the assertion in Assembly Concurrent Resolution 65. Nor did he die in an “accident;” his homicide was the direct result of criminal activity by the distracted motorist who maneuvered her vehicle into the 8 foot wide shoulder he occupied.

    Kenneth Prevatte was also not killed while riding in a bike lane, despite HBPD Investigator Barr’s testimony on the stand during the subsequent trial. Prevatte was, in fact, riding in the door zone of a twenty-two foot wide lane when he was struck from behind.

    It is terrifying that the traffic investigators, prosecutors, and lawmakers who are supposed to protect us (and who are also motorists themselves) are ignorant of the facilities available to cyclists, and oblivious to the danger posed by the lack of adequate infrastructure provided for the most vulnerable road users.

  4. I love that sign on the back of the bus.

  5. Ralph says:

    Congratulations to Santa Anna on the grants. It would be nice if transportation departments didn’t have to spend so much time and money fighting over scraps in the state budget..

    THE Turn signals don’t really inspire me. First if you have your arm out fully extended the blink in the front or rear is just extra. Your arm should be more visible. Second I never use the bent elbow right turn signal. I have yet to see it also where I live now. Right arm out left arm out. I also see a lot of quick signals with arms. Very much like the one blink turn signal use, will the light continue to signal for a short period after the arm drops?

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