Morning Links: 92% of LA hit-and-runs unsolved, 8 hurt in Sunnyvale assault, and Complete Streets in Beverly Hills

Don’t county on the LAPD to catch any driver who runs you down.

According to the LA Daily News, only eight percent of reported hit-and-runs were solved by police in the City of Angels in 2017 — a one third drop from the year before.

Police blame a new statistical formula for the drop from the already far too low total.

Which is why it’s better to stop hit-and-runs before they happen, rather than try to catch fleeing drivers afterwards.

If only our elected leaders cared enough to actually do something about it.

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Horrible news from Sunnyvale, where a speeding driver slammed into a group of people, allegedly on purpose, sending eight victims to the hospital.

The police are saying they were all pedestrians, however, photos from the scene show a number of backpacks and bicycles strewn about the crash site.

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It must be getting pretty chilly in hell these days.

Better Bike’s Mark Elliot is asking for your input on the Beverly Hills Complete Streets draft plan.

Yes, Complete Streets in the former Biking Black Hole.

The newly bike-friendly, though decidedly anti-scooter, city is even proposing enhancements to its nascent bicycle, pedestrian and transit networks.

Which is something no one who participated in bike plan talks ten years ago would have expected, when city leaders effectively blew off anyone who showed up for meetings on two wheels.

And scheduled those meetings for times when bike riders who wanted to participate couldn’t.

Things have changed.

But as we’ve seen in Los Angeles, it only takes a new election cycle or a handful of angry drivers to lose that newfound support for active transportation.

So add your comments to the plan.

And keep up the fight until the lines on the map turn into paint on the street.

………

I don’t even know what to say here.

In a truly bizarre ruling, the US 6th District Court of Appeals concluded that marking the tires of a car to track how long it’s been parked constitutes an “unreasonable search,” and lacks probable cause.

Even though it’s just marking the outside of the vehicle, which is open and in full view of the public.

It doesn’t seem likely stand up on appeal. And only applies to the 6th District, which is made up of Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee.

But it’s one more example of the privilege drivers enjoy.

Thanks to David Drexler for the heads-up.

………

Pasadena will promote the upcoming Amgen Tour of California by forming a human bicycle sculpture at the Rose Bowl Friday afternoon.

Reservations are required if you want to take part. And the first 100 people to confirm will receive free VIP passes to the Final Friday Foodtruck Festival,

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Bike Culver City discovers fresh Kermit on Overland Ave.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the link.

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The crowdfunding page for Frederick “Woon” Frazier is now up to nearly $9,000, just short of the $10,000 goal.

Hopefully some very generous and kindhearted people will push it over the top soon.

And yes, I’ve done my small part to help.

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Local

There will be a community meeting in Compton tonight to discuss the future of the LA River, hopefully including plans for completing a 51-mile bike path along its banks.

Santa Monica-based Bird is working to make their e-scooters more sustainable. And more durable, so they don’t fall apart while you’re riding them.

A Santa Clarita woman is calling for more bike lanes in the city after her mother was killed when she was rear-ended while riding her bike last month.

 

State

San Diego police release a sketch of the — alleged — perv who tried to lure a bike-riding nine-year old girl into his van next month.

Dockless bikeshare could be moving into San Diego’s North County this summer.

Thanks to Robert Leone for forwarding news of a new study from UC San Diego confirming that “talking on a cellphone while driving quadruples the risk of a crash even when a driver is using a hands-free device,” while texting results in an eight-times higher risk.

As San Jose’s Better Bikeway San Jose project nears completion, not everyone is on board. On two wheels or four.

 

National

Just a tad bit of roadie bias here. Women Fitness offers “must-have tips for girls who love bicycling.” Although it may come as a shock to them that many women somehow manage to ride a bike without spandex and clipless pedals.

A new study shows Americans are still sitting too much. Blame me for skewing the results; I’m still spending most of the day flat on my ass when I’m not rehabbing my new knee.

Bike lawyer Bob Mionske says states are finally coming around to Stop as Yield Laws — aka the Idaho Stop Law. And that’s a good thing. Maybe if enough states adopt it, we can finally stop hearing the tired refrain that California is not Idaho. Because evidently, they don’t think we know that.

Curbed considers how five American cities are expanding bikeshare to underserved areas.

JFK Jr was one of us.

A Colorado paper says Denver’s 20-year transportation plan will solve traffic congestion — if drivers don’t rise up against it. Then again, that’s what they said about LA’s mobility plan, which is gathering dust after the city backed down in the face of angry drivers.

An Illinois man faces up to 12 years in prison for the drunken hit-and-run crash that seriously injured a bike rider; he told police he knew he hit the man, but panicked and drove home instead of stopping. Sure, let’s go with that. Because no one would just try to sleep it off, then turn himself in once he sobered up, right?

Oops. Just days after the NYPD ticketed bike riders for not having a bell — and confiscated their bikes in some cases — Gothamist posts photos showing New York’s police commissioner doesn’t have one on his bike, either.

Great idea. The University of Kentucky offers its students $400 vouchers for a new bike, as long as they promise not to drive for two years. Make it enough for an e-cargo bike, and I’ll promise never to drive again.

A North Carolina man was injured when his bike was rear-ended by a speeding driver who had been weaving through traffic. Since he was deaf, he couldn’t hear the driver approaching and had no chance to get out of the way.

You’ve got to be kidding. A plainclothes Miami-Dade FL cop is being investigated by internal affairs after swearing at a bike-riding mom and her two kids to get out of the road, insisting — incorrectly — that it’s against the law for them to ride their bikes in the street. Then the cop intentionally doored her 14-year old son, knocking him off his bike.

 

International

Road.cc offers money saving tips for bike riders, including patch your own tubes and don’t be such a weight weenie.

Once again, bike riders are heroes, as a pair of Canadian men spotted a duck in distress while on a bike ride, and rescued her eight ducklings from certain death by fishing them out of a storm drain.

A Canadian city and its bikeshare provider defend their decision to junk dozens of outdated bikes, saying they were no longer road worthy.

English police found the body of a 78-year old flautist, a month after she went missing while on a bike ride.

More on that Scottish bus service that ferries mountain bikers nearly 40 miles from Edinburgh to trailheads in the Highlands, eliminating numerous car trips.

A Scottish suicide survivor’s sixth attempt to ride his bike around the world was cut short after it was stolen before he could even cross the British Channel. You know what they say. If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. And again. And again. And again. And again. And again.

About damn time. Welsh police are setting up a special road rage unit to investigate video evidence of assaults on bicyclists and pedestrians.

A 23-year old Zimbabwe bike rider pled guilty to negligence after hitting and killing a pedestrian while riding 21 mph; he had been facing a charge of culpable homicide.

A pair of Philadelphia-area women are riding over 6,000 miles from Thailand to Spain to raise funds for street children in Nepal; they’ve made it as far as Turkey after 406 days on the road.

 

Finally…

Nothing like finding a pair of 500-pound safes on the side of a bike path that were stolen 772 miles away. That feeling when you let your guard down, and your bike stolen gets along with several others at a cobbled sportive.

And probably not the best idea to knock London’s first bike mayor off his.

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A special thanks to Steve S for getting me back online after software issues locked me out of this site for over an hour last night. Without his help, you wouldn’t be reading this today. 

Although I’d probably be sleeping instead of writing right now.

2 comments

  1. Alan Coovert says:

    Here is another idea about stopping the violence of hit and runs. If a person is convicted of a hit and run, not only should the lose their privilege to drive they should also be banned from even buying or owning a car.

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