Coronavirus closures in Redondo Beach, bike thieves target frontline med workers, and China blames US cyclist for virus

If you just can’t get enough BikinginLA, I’ll be talking about bikes in the age of  the Covid-19 coronavirus with Leo Duran on KPCC’s Take Two this afternoon. 

If you’re in the LA area, tune in to 89.3 between 2 pm and 3 pm — Duran’s segment should come on around 2:45 pm — or listen live online wherever you are.

And don’t worry if you miss it, you can download the show on the show’s webpage

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The seemingly endless string of coronavirus closures just keeps on coming.

Redondo Beach is the latest city to crack down on non-social distancing crowds, shutting the Redondo Beach Pier, the International Boardwalk, Esplanade and Veterans Park for at least the next four weeks; some segments of the city’s beach bike path are closed, as well.

You can read the full announcement here.

And David Drexler sends photographic proof that the popular Santa Monica stairs are closed for the foreseeable future.

Thanks to Jim Lyle for Redondo Beach links. Photo of Redondo Beach bike path by Ted Faber.

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As we’ve said too many times already this week, there’s a special place in hell for anyone who’d steal a bike from a medical professional anytime, let alone someone treating patients during the coronavirus crisis.

Yet there seems to be a worldwide rash of bike thieves targeting busy doctors and nurses.

Like this physician from Nottingham, England.

Fortunately, a number of kindhearted people and bikemakers reached out to offer him a replacement. Which left him with choice between a Boardman, Brompton or a Ribble identical to the one that was stolen.

Evidently, he’s not big on bikes that start with B.

Meanwhile, a 32-year old English health care assistant had the bike she relied on to get to work stolen during an eight-hour shift, as well.

But it’s not just medical professionals; teachers seem to be on the hit list, too.

Thanks to Philippa Moore for the heads-up about the Nottingham doctor, who just happens to be her brother-in-law.

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Bike business is booming throughout the US, despite the calls for social distancing.

Or maybe because of it.

People all around the country are dusting off their bikes or buying new ones, and enjoying one of the few outdoor activities still available to most people while keeping them safely separated from others.

You’ll find basically the same story concerning booming bike shop business in Arizona, Philadelphia, North Carolina and Florida. Although at least one NC bike shop decided to shut down on its own.

Yet confusion abounds, as some states rule bike shops are essential services, while others order them to close before changing their minds.

Closer to home, Los Angeles, LA County and the Bay Area classify bike shops as essential. But still no word from the state of California.

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Chinese officials and internet users are seizing on an unsupported conspiracy theory claiming a US cyclist brought the Covid-19 coronavirus to China while competing in October’s World Military Games.

Maatje Benassi led much of the women’s 50-mile road race before crashing on the last lap.

However, there’s no evidence that she has, or ever had, the disease.

Nor is there any evidence of the disease in the US prior to spreading here from China early this year.

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Frequent contributor Megan Lynch is looking for a pannier for her Xtracycle.

https://twitter.com/may_gun/status/1242571292496154624

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Speaking of a special place in hell, there is something seriously wrong with anyone who would steal a wheelchair bike from an Oakland family.

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Sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A Boston cop witnesses a beating and strong-arm robbery in progress, and chases down the suspect as he tried to escape on a mountain bike.

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Local

Maybe you’ve noticed how clean the air is in Los Angeles since schools and businesses started shutting down this month, demonstrating what the city could be like if we ever get around to taming cars. Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the tip.

 

State

Free bike publication Cycle California! is having problems distributing their magazine due to coronavirus closures, so they’re inviting you to sign up for a free online edition. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

Apparently, not even coronavirus can stop applications for the state’s Active Transportation funding program, due on June 21st.

 

National

He gets it. A writer for Governing explains how transportation agencies know how harmful policies that prioritize single-occupancy vehicles are, yet stand in the way of much-needed changes.

Coronavirus brings surfing culture to landlocked public lands, as some areas are implementing locals-only rules of questionable legality.

VeloNews recommends the year’s best women’s road bike gear, including bib shorts from LA’s own women-owned Machines for Freedom.

A Colorado cyclist tests positive for coronavirus, despite being in peak form. And urges you to take it seriously.

Chicago’s mayor says stay at home means no more long runs or bike rides.

A Dayton, Ohio writer calls on everyone to get your bike ready, then get out and ride to stay active while socially distant.

Where to ride in the Big Apple when you need to lift your spirits and replenish your soul.

New York’s comptroller says reduce speed limits, subsidize bikeshare memberships and greatly expand pedestrian space to help frontline workers get around in the age of Covid-19.

Streetsblog New York posts an ode to speeding drivers, with apologies to Simon and Garfunkel.

This is why people keep dying on our streets. A Pennsylvania driver was high on coke when he killed a bike rider last year, yet was only charged with a couple misdemeanor DUI counts and a minor non-traffic citation.

Horrible news from Pennsylvania, where three members of the same family were run down by a driver as they rode their bikes, with two of them suffering life-threatening injuries; no charges yet, and no word on how the crash happened.

Adult tricycle-riding New Orleans icon Mamie Marie Francois announces she has Covid-19.

Orlando bike shop owners offer tips for new riders looking for a coronavirus alternative.

 

International

Bike Radar looks at budget bike cams for those of us who’d love a GoPro, but have to settle for what we can get.

Road.cc digs into the numbers, and examines just what a safe distance means on a bike, like we did the other day. And explains what the hell a hybrid bike is.

Ten tips for that sad day when you finally decide to do your riding inside.

Bad news from Ireland, where bicycling deaths are up 24% over the same time last year.

Italian bike manufacturer 3T has stopped making bikes, and turned their efforts to making valves for ventilator masks. Ten other bike companies are joining the fight, as well.

Bicycling tells the unexpected tale of American and British bike riders who met by chance in a lonely teahouse in the middle of a Kazakh desert, as they were both riding around the world from opposite directions.

You won’t see Bollywood star Salman Khan zooming around the streets of India anytime soon, as he shelters under the country’s quarantine for the next three weeks.

A retired sportswriter and endurance bicyclist finds himself marooned on a remote, sub-Antarctic New Zealand island after flying in from Hong Kong, as even relatives ostracize him over coronavirus fears.

 

Competitive Cycling

Colombian sprinter Fernando Gaviria says he contracted coronavirus during last month’s truncated Emirates Tour, but has since recovered.

Pro cyclist Brent Bookwalter describes catching the last flight out of Spain to get back home to his wife in North Carolina to ride out the coronavirus crisis.

The Tour de France still hasn’t been cancelled, despite the rush to cancel or reschedule virtually every race leading up to the July race.

Former roadie Peter Stetina disregards the early coronavirus warnings to compete in Oklahoma’s mud-choked The Mid South gravel grinder.

What the pros are eating, drinking and rubbing on their bodies when they actually get to go outside to ride.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could respond to voice commands, and give you a lift when you need a little encouragement. Unless maybe you’d prefer a pretty awesome looking laminated bamboo bike.

And who needs skis or a snowboard when you can hit the slopes on an ebike?

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