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

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

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

So be careful out there.

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

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

Because chances are, someone will.

And that goes double for Black Friday.

………

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

………

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

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

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

………

Local

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

CiclaValley goes back to San Francisco’s East Bay.

 

State

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

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

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

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

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

 

National

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

International

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Finally…

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

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

 

One comment

  1. Peter says:

    I posted on the article, but I couldn’t resist commenting here, too.

    The question is which poses a greater risk: a bicyclist or a motorist. This is not the question that is being answered by the statistics given.

    In those statistics, 19802 people were injured by automobiles in a 4 year period and 431 were injured by bicyclists. So if you walk out the door, you are more likely to be injured by a motorist than a cyclist.

    But that’s not the question being asked. The question is whether a bicyclist or a motorist is more likely to injure someone. While the statistics given are a start, they are useless without the number of cyclists and motorists.

    The requisite car analogy is that pink cars are not safer because only 4 people died last year while driving pink cars while thousands of people died driving other colored cars.

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