Morning Links: Calbike ranks LA area state legislators, and no charges in the Texas death of a San Diego cyclist

Great chart from Calbike showing the voting records of LA area legislators on bicycle issues in the recent legislative session.

I’m pleased to see my Assembly Member has a 100% rating.

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Sad news from Texas, as a San Diego man on a cross-country ride to bring awareness to homeless vets was killed in a collision last week.

Stephen Michael Clift was riding eastbound on I-40 near Groom, Texas, when he was rear-ended by a driver who admitted looking away and never seeing Clift’s bike before he ran him down.

Apparently, that’s a good enough excuse for drivers in the Lone Star State, since police announced he won’t face charges. Evidently Texas drivers have no responsibility to pay attention while operating multi-ton machines, let alone avoid killing innocent people.

The former participant in the Occupy movement had reportedly given up everything he owned to take part in the March Across America for Homeless Veterans bike tour.

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Local

A video from Metro flies viewers through the plans for an improved Union Station, including a bikeshare station scheduled for next year, and a new Bike Hub due in two years.

CiclaValley details the first part of his journey from LA to San Diego by bike for the recent Calbike Bicycle Summit.

The Santa Monica Spoke offers details on the official launch of the Breeze bikeshare program a week from tomorrow in front of SaMo City Hall.

The Long Beach city council considers improving access to the LA River bike path, including a traffic signal opposed by some residents.

Former Long Beachers The Path Less Pedaled are headed back down to SoCal for a visit.

 

State

A student at Fullerton College explains why she is afraid to ride a bike to campus. Although she’s mistaken about one thing; bicyclists are allowed to ride in the full lane on any street where the right lane is too narrow to safely share with a motor vehicle.

San Diego responds to the death of a 15-year old boy by looking into safety improvements on the street, including bike lanes.

The San Diego Union-Tribune offers advice for runners and riders on how to stay safe after dark, including a warning to watch out for wild animals.

Still more news from San Diego, as the suspected bike thief who stabbed a cop trying to stop him pleads not guilty to four counts, including attempted murder of a police officer.

Sad news from Palo Alto, as well, as a bike rider was killed while riding on a popular bike route Tuesday morning.

The mother of a fallen San Francisco cyclist calls for safer streets in the wake of his death; police say he was thrown into the path of a bus after his bike got caught in streetcar tracks.

Napa County gets its first green bike lanes in St. Helena.

A Napa bicyclist suffered serious injuries after she allegedly went through a stop sign and was hit by a car. Once again, reports that she actually blew the stop should be taken with a grain of salt unless it can be confirmed by independent witnesses.

 

National

The Daily Beast looks at what it call the inevitable event when a self-driving car kills someone on a bike.

The next time you need a royalty-free photo of someone riding in a bike lane, People for Bikes has you covered.

Since Washington state legalized marijuana use, the number of drivers involved in fatal crashes with THC in their systems has nearly doubled.

Gizmodo explains how a former video game designer helped create Salt Lake City’s first-in-the-nation protected intersection.

An Aspen CO man is arrested for DUI twice in just three hours.

The cyclist killed in the Colorado Springs Halloween Day shooting spree was an Iraq veteran and a father of two. Sadly, it might have been prevented; a woman called police to report a disturbed-looking man walking down the street with an assault rifle prior to the shooting, only to be told they couldn’t do anything because the city has an open carry law.

Now that’s taking traffic crime seriously. A Michigan woman will spend the next 25 to 50 years behind bars for the DUI hit-and-run death of an eight-year old boy while he was riding his bike; she had heroin, cocaine and Xanax in her system at the time of the crash.

The Orlando paper offers a reminder not to buy a big box store bicycle-shaped object for the holidays, and suggests getting a clearance bike from your local bike shop for close to the same price instead.

 

International

Unbelievable. Not one day behind bars for a Vancouver cop convicted of punching a bicyclist in the head — while handcuffing him for running a red light. He also gets to keep his job, although he does have to pay a whopping $100 restitution.

Evidently, Edmonton’s bike corrals have to hibernate for the winter.

The Guardian looks askance at the crowdfunded proposal to build a floating bikeway through the heart of London on the Thames River. The people behind pseudo-visionary projects like this miss the point; one of the joys of bicycling is the ability to immerse yourself in the city and go wherever you want, rather than be totally isolated from it. Although it might be fun to ride on the famed river once or twice.

Scottish police are looking for a cyclist who pushed a 72-year old bike rider off his bike and punched him repeatedly while riding on a bike path. Sad to see the road rage that has become far too common among motorists spreading to the bike world.

PRI looks deeper into why some refugees are riding bikes across the border between Russia and Norway.

Olso, Norway is investing the equivalent of half a billion dollars in bicycle infrastructure.

A Turkish cyclist explains why he’s traveling the world by bicycle; he hopes to finish his journey by 2020.

 

Finally…

If you swerve your truck to crash into your bike-riding friend because he took it the night before and owes you money, you’re probably not really friends. Evidently, an e-bike has to look cool before commuters will use it.

And TV’s Supergirl not only rides a bike, she has one tattooed on her ankle. Like they couldn’t have found a photo of it?

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Come back later this morning, when we’ll have a great guest post from LA BAC member Jonathan Weiss explaining your rights to ride two or more abreast in California, reposted from the Velo Club La Grange newsletter.

 

4 comments

  1. Your paragraph on the SD cyclist killed in TX highlights one of my major complaints about the carhead LEO in TX. When I was hit by a car making an illegal pass as I was trying to make a left turn the LEO tried to tell me that I wasn’t allowed to make a left turn from that location (entering a parking lot on a 2-lane street with no sidewalk).

  2. Mark Elliot says:

    The Michigan item brings to mind a question: what’s the difference ultimately between a driver with drugs in the system and any other that operates a vehicle with negligence sufficient to run over a boy under similar circumstances?

    Seems to me we’re still demonizing, as some kind of character failure, drug use – and especially when there’s a cudgel like a vehicular crime. But what about the sober driver who operates the vehicle lucidly but with depraved indifference to life? Likely a shorter sentence, absent the drug use.

  3. Michele Chavez says:

    I am surprised that my legislator Sharon Runner supported cycling 40% of the time. I thought it would be even worse.

  4. cantalouped says:

    http://www.mouser.com/applications/automotive-rise-of-the-machine/

    Is an example of the writing if not thinking going on, and that site has a smorgasboard of such essays apparently so I have not yet studied this one but chose it as it is set in the far future, casts a former governor known for promissing to be back in fact back in power.

    Stephen Spielberg’s take is that by then the robot’s will be texting due to there ‘being’ not just being used to drive more safely by us but his “A.I.” was only a nod to the dead director who left him the story boards and a few months writing that did NOT connect the dots.

    To ban human’s driving distracted I say just ban them driving- and stat.

    The author suggests it would take decades- after cars don’t need us.

    It must not take that long.

    That polluting cars are still allowed in San Diego, in DTLA, is frankly unbelievable. THere is absolutely NO reason to allow heat engine torque systems that generate there own heat in the dirtiest fashion to rule such roads now for a very very very long time.

    We are seeing smart cars be delayed until they are affordable if not shared. This is madness. The guy who refused the directorship of LA’s transportation when it was offered to him according the deputy mayor’s introduction that you attended personally is presently according the Washington Post stepping back a bit, from the private sector saying don’t rely upon the private sector!

    Agreed. We must demand what we deserve when we hail a taxi online.

    It is one thing to stand on the road with your hand up and get a car you could not even sell for a year’s tuition at a state college.

    Another to accept a nonhybrid from an app. Still another to think that leftover’s finally out of demand enough to be sold to fleet’s like Prius make any sense at all getting any blessing from government.

    In one of his prior employer’s town’s they tax to support disabled people getting taxi’s they can use.

    We are no less worthy- and I don’t mean one’s that have bike rack’s!

    I mean the rest of us.

    In some coastal area’s we have seen the odd astranaut try to, or succeed, not sure at this point, but long ago buy some all electric car’s to use as Limo’s.

    In Long Beach you can put your bike on a rack of a bus that uses liquid methane! But it burns it. YOU can’t presently get a bus bought that uses other then gas or diesel and recovers braking energy though. I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP! Yes the LNG is being burned to generate the same heat the brake pads just dumped into the dust we didn’t ask to be given to inhale. And it would not surprise me if the fire is used to evaporate the liquid to burn it to spin a compressor to condense our sweat inside the cabin. Uncle Sam pays four bucks so for our local dollar we get pennies- such is the essence of antitrust that is the rule for what we suffer– not that it is exceptional as toyed with by the private car industries.

    And by “private car” I mean the opposite of limo’s.

    Optibike is selling a four year old trade in or whatever with financing for a few dollars a day- for less then a local MEtro pass in much of So Cal that is. They do not say whether it is type 1, 2, or 3. Instead they claim that despite replacing the batteries one’s with three year older batteries (2008) are still in daily commuting etc. use.

    The executive summary is that the four minute mile is plenty fast and he is right.

    The challenge is to get our transit to not be the tortoise at speeds below that. Our road bikes, the one’s weighting a few pounds, not hundreds, or even dozens, presently we all know have us nearly getting across the intersection before drivers apply any gas at all. For six figures we can brag that our ride can start faster then if dropped. Big deal. For that much gravy gravity should not be the prize winning feat to merely beat!

    I’m sorry I have to post this one in two parts.

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