Morning Links: Bonin rebuts e-scooter ban, California e-scooter laws, and LA Metro nearly takes out bike riders

Councilmember Mike Bonin rebuts the call by fellow councilmember Paul Koretz to temporarily ban e-scooters in Los Angeles.

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Since we’ve been talking about e-scooters recently, maybe we should all catch up on the laws regarding their use in the Golden State. Much of which may come as a surprise to many people using them.

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A Metro bus nearly took out a trio of bicyclists when the driver starts drifting into an occupied bike lane in DTLA.

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Credit Vietnam with what may be the world’s coolest pedestrian bridge.

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Local

The USA Cycling Elite Track National Championships are coming to the VELO Sports Center in Carson this weekend.

 

State

Big Bear considers a plan to connect existing bike lanes into a complete network around the lake.

Lompoc will host its second open streets event Friday evening.

Talk about not getting it. A New York expat in San Luis Obispo says people in SLO aren’t going to give up their cars to walk, bike or take mass transit. The point is to make it safe and convenient for people who want to leave their cars at home, which will make traffic a little easier for everyone — even people who insist on driving everywhere.

A Los Altos letter writer who just completed the course recommends that everyone take the Bike League’s Smart Cycling course, and says it should be taught in schools. I’ve heard nothing but good things about the Cycling Savvy course, as well.

Palo Alto has installed a new roundabout to slow traffic on a bike boulevard, which appears to be working. So naturally, some drivers want it removed, while others say it’s not safe for bike riders.

Chris Bucchere, the bike rider convicted of killing a pedestrian while speeding through a San Francisco intersection, has started a 10-part podcast about the case. And if the first one is any indication, blames everyone but himself.

Sounding like residents of Coronado, homeowners and drivers in Galt are complaining about new green bike lanes, saying they’re ugly, distracting, too bright and will lower property values.

 

National

An Oregon wine website talks about the benefits of encouraging bicycle tours of the Oregon wine country.

This could be your big break, as a casting company is looking for Portland bike riders to appear faux nude in a Disney movie. Yes, Disney.

Houston police name the suspect in the shooting of a noted cardiac surgeon who was killed by another bicyclist while riding his bike to work; he had apparently carried a grudge against the doctor for 20 years, ever since his mother died during surgery.

Talk about not getting it. An Illinois accident reconstruction specialist says bike riders should only ride on quiet country roads, not urban bike paths. Which is fine if you only ride recreationally, but ridiculous if you actually need to go somewhere. He also doesn’t seem to know the difference between a bike path and a bike lane.

An Illinois politician says the racist comment he posted to a video online isn’t racist, just funny. If you consider a stumbling drunk white woman knocking a Hispanic woman off her bicycle, combined with a joke about Trump’s border wall, funny. Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the heads-up.

An Orwellian-named New York group calls itself Queens Streets for All, while fighting a protected bike lane that would do exactly that.

Streetsblog writes that New York’s bike network is meaningless if bicyclists can’t actually use it because cars and trucks — and police vehicles — are parked in it.

Once again, a city does the right thing after it’s too late. DC’s Department of Transportation looks into rubber flaps to prevent bike tires from getting caught in streetcar tracks after a 19-year old college student was killed. Even though that’s a known problem with any railroad tracks, and easy to fix.

You’ve got to be kidding. After a speeding, distracted driver kills a bike-riding Baton Rouge city councilmember, the Louisiana parish where it occurred responds with a series of victim-blaming safety recommendations that wouldn’t have made a damn bit of difference.

Instead of an outright ban on e-scooters, New Orleans develops a six-month pilot program, while blocking them from the crowded, narrow streets of the French Quarter.

Speaking of the Big Easy, New Orleans considers revoking their mandatory bike registration program after a rider gets hit with a $1,000 ticket.

 

International

A new study from the University of Duh shows that bike riders get stressed by traffic and bad infrastructure.

Bike Radar offers suggestions on how to get faster, faster.

A very well-deserved five years behind bars for a British man who downed a Jägermeister shot and 10 pints of beer, then got behind the wheel and sent 38 texts while driving before running down a man riding his bike. And just drove away afterwards. You really have to suck to make five years seem like a light sentence.

The Liverpool soccer team goes for a bike ride at their training camp in France. So naturally, the British tabloids focus on who’s not wearing a helmet, or wearing it right.

No bias here. A British paper writes that Aussie motorists blew up when they saw a photo of a bicyclist riding in the street, rather than in a brand new $4.7 million protected bike lane next to it. And only at the end mentions that the bike lane was still taped off because it wasn’t open yet.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a Scottish man’s bicycle as he was being treated by paramedics after getting hit by a driver.

An Irish inquest hears that the young victim of a bicycling collision was wearing dark clothes and may not have had lights on his bike, but no mention that the 70-year old driver who hit him was three sheets to the wind. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews looks at the Israeli Cycling Academy, the only WorldTour cycling team with a trained sniper on the roster.

The National Catholic Register recounts the recent Tour de France from a Roman Catholic perspective.

 

Finally…

If you want to be fashionable, wear your spandex riding kit for your next night out. But of you want to be seen, a bike cop’s uniform may not be enough.

And somehow, I doubt this was much fun for the victim.

But thanks for playing.

 

4 comments

  1. David Drexler says:

    Those scooter laws are way too complex for most people that operate electric scooters to understand and remember. Especially the one about how to make a left turn.

  2. james says:

    Someone riding a scooter needs two types of headlight but not a taillight? A light that is visible from 300 can be pretty feeble. One of those tiny single LED lights that are intended for a jogger’s belt (or headband?) can technically be seen from 1000ft. If you had a single effective headlight and taillight, both attached to the scooter, but nothing on your person you would be in violation of the law.
    I don’t understand why taillights are not required for all vehicles. This might be the only 1st world country that doesn’t require taillights on bicycles. The effectiveness of reflectors depends on too many variables being right at the right time.

    I believe the US requires a larger amount of reflective surfaces in automotive side and taillights than the EU or Japan. I doesn’t seem to do much good. We also have the least safe roads in the 1st world. In terms of road deaths per capita we are usually in between Indonesia and the Phillipines.

  3. doug moore says:

    As for the Metro bus wandering into the bike lane, yeah, for me, happens way too often – as I commute through DTLA most days.

    I get that they have to pull to the right for passengers, but these are *professionals* who should know how to check for bike traffic before they move across the bike lane.

    I have a very bright light that is set to strobe mode weather I ride day or night – which seems to help sometimes.

    Also, have added a coaches whistle to augment the less effective bike bell. That thing is blisteringly loud. Get’s the attention of anyone in the area. Highly recommended – and inexpensive. But you’re not going to make any friends using it too often 🙂

  4. Ralph says:

    Couldn’t get to the New Orleans article. I think you posted one about a rider getting fined like that before. The cop went and wrote up infractions for every thing wrong, One ticket for every missing reflector. Not like on a car where you would get a fix-it ticket. Just crazy and an example of using the laws to smack people you don’t like for what ever reason.

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