Morning Links: Jailed for riding a bicycle, CiclaValley makes a gutsy move, and an early lesson in distraction

A Pennsylvania man has now been in jail for over a year awaiting trial on charges of repeatedly obstructing traffic by riding his bicycle on a local highway, and violating a judge’s order prohibiting him from riding his bicycle, on the highway or anywhere else.

Let that sink in.

He’s been jailed for a full year without bail or a trial for a traffic infraction. Something a driver would have gotten a simple ticket for.

Never mind that he has a legal right to take the lane if it’s too narrow to share with a motor vehicle, which is exactly what bike riders are taught to do.

And never mind that the judge may not have legal authority to prohibit him, or anyone else, from riding a bicycle, any more than she would have the authority to ban him from walking.

………

Most bike riders spend less time worrying about avoiding roadkill than becoming it.

And even less about zombie entrails flying through the sky.

But that’s exactly what CiclaValley ran into last week. Literally.

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Evidently, some habits start early in boys. And distraction is just one of them.

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The Onion’s take on Vision Zero comments hits a little too close to home.

But they can’t begin to match the real thing.

Like the Pasadena car dealer who says the city should forget about all those bike lanes and trying to be a green city, and just install more parking spaces and make it more convenient to own a car. Because really, you just can’t have enough places to park a car. Or drive one.

Or the San Diego letter writer who’s angry about plans to make it a bicycling city, and wants to know when he gets to vote on taking public roadways away from cars and giving them to a special interest group. Because those poor, put-upon motorists certainly aren’t a special interest subsidized by the general public, right?

And never mind the subtle bias of failing to mention that the ebike involved in a fatal crash with a Missouri deputy actually had a rider until the very last sentence.

………

Local

An LA-area man is reunited with the lifeguards and paramedics who saved his life after he suffered a heart attack while riding his bike on the bike path at Dockweiler State Beach.

LA’s Phil Gaimon continues the Worst Retirement Ever with a ride up Mt. Diablo.

Major streets will be closed this Saturday around Cal State Long Beach for the Beach Streets University open streets event.

Metro wants to know about your Bike Month events. And no, popping a beer in front of the TV while you watch the Tour of California after finishing your ride doesn’t count.

 

State

Caltrans awarded $9.3 million in Sustainable Transportation Planning Grants for 41 projects throughout the state, including a number of projects in Southern California.

Mountain bikers are complaining about efforts to tame trails in Laguna Beach.

San Diego begins work on cleaning up a massive homeless encampment and bicycle chop shop along the San Diego River.

 

National

Ebike maker Faraday Bicycles is suing Tesla wannabe Faraday Future over Faraday trademark infringement.

A Utah county lifts a decade-long ban on students riding their bikes to school after finally realizing they were doing the kids more harm than good.

Denver bike riders will get a new half-mile long protected bike lane to replace a painted lane.

Frightening story from Chicago, as an eight-year old girl escaped an attempted kidnapping when she fought off a man who placed a plastic bag over her head as she rode her bike with a group of other kids.

VeloNews offers a front line report from Indiana’s legendary Little 500.

New York is investing $100 million to complete a 32-mile esplanade trail around Manhattan.

The Village Voice says the way to get away with killing someone in NYC is to use a car, as few drivers ever face charges for killing a pedestrian or a bike rider, despite the city’s commitment to Vision Zero.

Hundreds of kids on bicycles take over a Philadelphia expressway; a local newsman was clearly not amused.

Streetsblog points out that the Decatur GA road diet attacked yesterday by a bike-hating Atlanta columnist is supported by 77% of local residents.

Miami could get a network of new solar power-generating bikeways if a city commissioner has his way.

 

International

A British Columbia bike registry app could go belly up if they can’t figure out a revenue stream.

A custom adaptive trike is a dream come true for an eight-year old Syrian refugee, thanks to the generosity of people in her new Winnipeg, Canada home.

Toronto police arrest a transient for a bike-born arson spree.

Life is cheap in Britain, where a careless driver walks with a suspended sentence for killing an 83-year old ebike rider, despite fleeing the scene and coming back to watch the investigation while pretending to be a casual observer.

An English antique shop owner is told to remove the yellow bicycle he puts outside to direct people to his shop because it gives “the wrong image of the town.” But parking a car in front would probably be just fine.

Once again, bikes go where cars can’t, as Israeli researchers developed a bike-based sensor to map ground magnetic field data in sensitive areas where motor vehicles can’t be used.

A Pakistani man is bicycling around the Persian Gulf to promote peace, unity and brotherhood.

Evidently, they start practicing for the World Naked Bike Ride early in New Zealand, as a Kiwi toddler was busted for riding naked on his tricycle.

A Hong Kong writer says the city needs to become more bike friendly after the troubled kickoff of a dockless bikeshare system.

A free public bikeshare system in Hangzhou, China is helping to clear the air in the notoriously polluted country.

 

Finally…

Probably not the best idea to ride your bike on the freeway when you’re drunk and stoned; then again, you probably wouldn’t ride on the freeway if you weren’t drunk and stoned. Once flying cars finally get here, every lane really will be a bike lane.

And Trump hasn’t done a lot of the things he promised for his first 100 days, but at least he hasn’t raced a bicycle.

Or ridden one, for that matter.

 

2 comments

  1. Chris says:

    The comments on the story about the PA man seem to indicate that there is (a lot) more to that story. At the very least, if he is riding in the manner described by a few commenters who have crossed his path—intentionally riding down middle of road (not the middle of the lane…) during rush hour in an attempt to cause traffic and engaging angry drivers in altercations—then perhaps prohibiting him from cycling isn’t the worst thing—for motorists and other cyclists alike.

  2. Chris says:

    http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2016/09/09/man-ordered-not-to-ride-bicycle-back-in-court-says-he-needed-exercise/

    This story goes deeper to explain that he’s been charged with additional crimes for courtroom antics involving weapons.

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