That viral Covid-19 exercise study isn’t, LA approves Avalon Blvd Complete Street, and current Camp Pendleton closures

Bicycling’s Selene Yeager says take that viral Belgian-Dutch Covid-19 study about social distancing while exercising outside with a grain of salt.

Or maybe a bag.

Because it’s not a study, after all.

It’s super easy to get freaked out when you’re now learning that you need to stay upwards of 32 feet away from a runner and 65 feet away from a cyclist in front of you. In some areas, this is not even possible. But take a deep, socially-distanced breath. This paper is not a vetted study nor a study on disease transmission. And it’s important to take both of those factors seriously right now before potentially spreading what could be misinformation.

She goes on to explain that it’s just a white paper, rather than a peer-reviewed  study, based on the computer simulations like the ones used to explore wind resistance and drafting.

And while airborne transmission of Covid-19 is theoretically possible, a Chinese study of more than 75,000 cases did not find a single instance of the virus spreading that way.

So while group rides are out for now, it should still be okay to take a quick solo ride. With the proper precautions, of course.

In the end, the advice still stands: Stay home as much as you can. Wash your hands often. Ride and run solo, striving for as much physical distance as you can from others—but definitely at least six feet. Wear a buff or bandana if you’re going to be in highly trafficked areas. If you feel at all sick stay home.

Photo by Artem Beliaikin from Pexels.

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The LA city council has signed off on a Complete Streets plan for a 2.2-mile segment of Avalon Blvd in South LA, along with road diet adding an additional 6.4 miles of protected or buffered bike lanes.

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Thanks to Robert Leone for forwarding news of the latest road closures in Camp Pendleton.

Please see the following closure updates as of April 9, 2020:

  1. Stuart Mesa Road – Northbound and Southbound lanes CLOSED from Las Flores (41 Area) to Las Pulgas Road.  *Open for Emergency Traffic only. Bike route remains closed.
  2. Beach Club Road –  Closed. *No Emergency traffic.
  3. Vandegrift Blvd – OPEN to the public in both directions.  *Right-hand eastbound lane CLOSED in Box Canyon.
  4. Del Mar Gate – CLOSED inbound and outbound until further. *No Emergency Traffic. CLOSURE DUE TO COVID-19

Please check Facebook for updates.

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Philly can rest easy, at least as far as coronavirus is concerned, after a handlebar surfing masked man sprayed the streets with Lysol.

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Local

Spectrum News 1 says LA bike riders are taking notice of the lighter traffic and cleaner air. Just don’t count on it staying that way.

The LA Times lists what’s open and closed in Southern California this weekend; just assume all parks and recreation areas will be closed to prevent overcrowding over the Easter weekend.

A pair of Dutch bike riders are forced to end their round-the-world bucket list trip in Los Angeles, after they’re denied entry to Japan due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Burbank is joining Los Angeles in eliminating beg buttons to reduce the risk of Covid-19 infections.

CiclaValley goes gravel grinding on the Backbone Trail — before the coronavirus shut everything down.

 

State

Bikes are booming in Bakersfield, too.

 

National

Bicycling examines how bikewear companies and bike and accessory makers have made a sharp pivot to making personal protective gear for healthcare and essential workers engaged in the battle with Covid-19.

Trek’s John Burke says he thinks the bike industry’s best days are still ahead because the pandemic has shown just how important bicycles are.

Gear Patrol says this could be the ideal time to buy a new bike, while some shops and bike brands are offering coronavirus deals. Just be sure to check with your local bike shop before buying anything online; they need the business, and may match or beat whatever deals you might find.

Flagstaff AZ has cancelled all the events associated with next month’s Bike Week. That shouldn’t be a problem in Los Angeles, since nothing’s been announced for LA’s bike week, anyway.

You can now ride your ebike on paved natural area trails in my hometown, after a one-year pilot program didn’t uncover any problems.

Talk about a bad week. An Illinois woman was fired from both of her jobs because of the coronavirus shutdown, then had her bike and purse stolen when she went to apply for another one. But her luck turned when a cop recovered her bike and bag, and a kindhearted stranger gave her a check for $1,000.

This is who we share the roads with. A serial hit-and-run Ohio driver is under arrest after injuring four people in three separate crashes, each on different days and apparently intentionally, as they were walking on the sidewalk. But at least police say the victims’ dogs are okay.

Syracuse NY police have arrested one of the hit-and-run drivers who killed a popular musician as he was riding his bike. But they absolved the second driver, claiming she didn’t know she’d hit anyone.

Emptier streets result in a jump in New York traffic fatalities, as rush hour speeds are up as much as 288%.

A writer for Streetsblog complains about bike lane victim blaming in the New York Times.

New York’s Bike Match program has expanded to DC, allowing people with extra bikes to be matched with essential workers who need them.

Maryland bike riders are joining walkers and runners on the streets in the age of coronavirus, even if they are doing it alone.

 

International

A writer for Canadian Cycling Magazine says riding outside is great, but he feels far safer doing his riding inside these days.

Vancouver bike riders join the call from other North American cities to expand temporary bike lanes to accommodate people switching to bikes to avoid coronavirus.

A London writer says he’s glad to be back in the saddle again after 15 years, taking advantage of the lighter traffic to rediscover the joy of riding a bike.

London’s Evening Standard makes the case that speeding drivers are putting the safety of essential workers at risk; police have stopped drivers zooming up to 142 mph.

A UK bicyclist questions how long a ride is too long under the country’s coronavirus restrictions.

The head of Brompton explains how he plans to keep the iconic British foldie brand afloat during the coronavirus crisis.

Even in the Netherlands, bicyclists are being urged to stay home this weekend to avoid injuries that could impact already overloaded hospitals.

 

Competitive Cycling

UCI, aka the International Cycling Union, is officially broke after everything was cancelled this spring and the Olympics were postponed until next year; the organization has cut executive salaries and all staff members are on full or partial furlough.

Newly crowned Tour de France champ Egan Bernal is responding to the coronavirus crisis by auctioning off his bike, along with white and yellow jerseys from the race, to raise funds for a Columbian children’s charity.

One of the first American cyclists to ride in Europe looks back at the cancelled Paris-Roubaix race, calling it “brutal and magical and the stuff of myth,” and insisting you can’t really understand it until you ride it.

 

Finally…

What it’s like to ride a tiny $261 Chinese ebike. Never let a little flood stop your ride.

And taking indoor cycling to the extreme.

https://twitter.com/MLorenaGonzalez/status/1248393806925287424

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a damn mask, already. 

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