$10 million ebike rebate added to CA budget, onerous bikeshare insurance bill, and Beverly Hills gives up on bikeshare

This is beginning to look like a watershed year for bicycle bills in Sacramento.

Calbike writes that a proposed $10 million program to help Californians buy ebikes has made it into the latest draft of next year’s state budget.

SACRAMENTO – CalBike is thrilled to announce that legislators approved a $10 million e-bike incentive program in next year’s state budget. Funded as part of the state’s campaign to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles, the program will help thousands of Californians get access to e-bikes to replace car trips. Bikes eligible will include bikes “designed for people with disabilities; utility bicycles for carrying equipment or passengers, including children; and folding bicycles.”

It joins bills to decriminalize jaywalking (AB 1238) and allow bike riders to treat stop signs as yields (AB122), which both pass out of committee in the state senate last week.

………

Calbike and the LACBC are also stepping up efforts to oppose AB371, which would force bikeshare and e-scooter providers to extend insurance coverage to their customers, which could have a chilling effect on micromobility.

This is why we are frightened by a bill in the state Senate that could kill shared bike and scooter systems. It would require nonprofits, government agencies, and private companies that operate shared bike and scooter systems to extend their liability coverage to the sole negligence or reckless behavior of a rider, setting a legal precedent that no other industry is subject to. Just like a rental car company cannot be held liable for the reckless actions of their drivers (Graves Amendment), neither should shared bike and scooter operators Further, the proposed form of insurance would be highly susceptible to fraud due to the low cost and ease of staging accidents, with minimal burden of proof.

The bill would even apply to the nonprofits and government agencies that just got funded to operate bike share systems with some of the $20 million in Clean Mobility Options grants. The Air Resources Board clearly understands the potential of these systems; the legislature should also, and abandon this attempt to impose a fatally impractical requirement.

Let’s hope they get it.

While more probably can and should be done to protect bikeshare and scooter users, and those around them, this is not the time to make them financially untenable and drive micromobility users back into their cars.

………

You can kiss Beverly Hills Bike Share goodbye.

The tony city is joining a growing list of SoCal cities in pulling up stakes on its docked bikeshare system at the end of this month.

I wouldn’t hold your breath on those new shared mobility options, though.

At least not as far as bikes or scooters are concerned.

Thanks to David Drexler for the forward.

………

Cable news outlet Spectrum News 1 highlighted Walk ‘n Rollers bike repair hub and free bicycle distribution program.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

No bias here. The mayor of an Iowa town is begging for lawsuits, let alone funerals, after posting a large sign telling drivers not to stop for bike riders where a popular bike trail crosses a two lane highway. Even though he insists he rides a bike himself, and only wants to improve safety by encouraging people in cars to kill people on bikes just keep going. Sure, let’s go with that.

A London school is using traffic cones to block a new bikeway, claiming bicyclist are endangering the students — never mind that they’re endangering their own students and parents who ride bikes to school.

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

An English ebike rider with defective brakes walked without a day behind bars after he was sentenced for recklessly weaving in and out of traffic before running a red light and crashing into a car; he suffered serious head injuries in the crash.

………

Local

Los Angeles was ranked as the nation’s 14th most future-focused city, based in part on LA’s bike score. No, really.

KCRW considers what a post-pandemic Los Angeles will look like, as UCLA architecture and urban design professor Dana Cuff points to CicLAvia as a sign of hope.

LA Taco offers a photographic look at the annual Chief Lunes Fireworks Party Ride through DTLA and Glendale on the 3rd.

Pasadena is looking for input on the city’s proposed pedestrian plan.

KNBC4 sounds its “bulbous bike horn” over the return of CicLAvia in Wilmington next month.

 

State

There’s justice for a fallen San Diego bike rider, after Abbas Karama Shariff copped a plea in the hit-and-run death of 35-year-old Daryl Treadwell in May of last year; he’ll be sentenced to the maximum penalty of four years behind bars.

A new study from San Diego’s Juiced Bikes confirms that riding a ped-assist bike over challenging terrain burns as many calories as a game of basketball. Playing, that is, not watching.

Streetsblog San Francisco calls Oakland’s decision to keep the protected bike lanes on Telegraph Ave a “resounding win for safety.”

Bike riders in Los Altos are calling a new freeway expansion project a death zone, with riders on the Foothill Expressway now expected to cross left over double right turn lanes in order to keep going straight.

Sad news from Chico, after it turned out the bikepacker killed by a grizzly bear while camping in Montana earlier this week was a 65-year old woman from the NorCal city.

 

National

Bicycling says yes, there’s a shortage of bicycles and parts due to the pandemic bike boom, but you don’t have to be a jerk about it. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

Outdoor Life rates trunk-mounted bike racks.

A pair of Nebraska nonprofits formed the state’s first all-girl mountain bike team to encourage young women to get out and ride.

There’s a special place in hell for the owner of a historic St. Louis building, who is threatening to evict a bike charity by Monday after the bicycles they’d planned to donate to disadvantaged kids were damaged in a partial building collapse last summer — even though the owner was renting them space in a building that had been condemned in 2013. They estimate it will take another $40,000 to clean and repair the bikes so they can be safely ridden.

A Houston rabbi is recovering from multiple broken bones after the bike path he was riding on ended without warning, and he crashed into some large traffic barrels that were lining the roadway.

A Virginia bike shop owner calls the state’s new law requiring drivers to change lanes to pass someone on a bicycle “a blessing,” saying most people didn’t know how to judge the previous three-foot passing requirement.

Good for them. Inspired by a five-year old amputee, a group of Lafayette, Louisiana high school students are hoping to take a product they developed for a robotics competition to market; the adaptation kit they created can be added to any bicycle in minutes to assist people with missing or compromised legs to ride a bike.

 

International

A group of young Bolivians are battling pollution by forming the first bicycle messenger and delivery service in the smog-choked city of Cochabamba.

This is the cost of traffic violence. An eleven-month old baby is dead and his father hospitalized after they were collateral damage in a collision between the drivers of a supercar and an SUV in Vancouver, when one of the vehicles slammed into a group of pedestrians.

I want to be like them when I grow up. Canada’s Royal Academy of Octogenarian Cyclists Facebook group is for people over 80 who still love to ride a bike.

When my wife and I visited London several years ago, we quickly learned walking around Parliament and Westminster Abbey meant taking your life in your hands. Now plans are in place to cut Westminster speed limits to just 20 mph to improve safety and encourage more people to walk and bike.

Call it a royal tandem, as the queen’s daughter-in-law Sophie, Countess of Wessex, took to two wheels to support a “new initiative to tackle rising unemployment among people who are blind or partially sighted,” with the program’s appeal manager as stoker.

A British motorcycle rider got three years behind bars for fleeing the scene after slamming into a bicycle rider when he clipped the wheel of another bicycle and sliding across the roadway. He was arrested after he returned to the site of the crash on a borrowed bicycle, and was chased down by a cop who had to borrow another bike to catch him.

A new Austrian study confirms what most of us already suspected — suburban living is the worst for carbon emissions.

Victoria, Australia will give new See.Sense smart lights that collect roadway data to 1,000 bike riders in an effort improve safety for bicyclists.

 

Competitive Cycling

Yesterday’s Tour de France winner claimed his fourth career stage win, on the most prestigious stage of the world’s most prestigious bike race. Meanwhile, no change in the yellow jersey, even if it did crack a bit.

Germany cyclist Tony Martin was forced to abandon the Tour after crashing into a ditch.

Sadly, we don’t have to worry about spoilers in women’s cycling. Twenty-one-year old Dane Emma Norsgaard won her first stage in the Giro Donne by just edging out SoCal’s Coryn Rivera on a course that circled Lake Como. No word on whether they waved to George and Amal Clooney as they went by.

Pink Bike examines how technology pioneered in mountain bikes is making its way into pro cycling.

Flo Bikes looks forward to this weekend’s Mountain Bike Nationals. They’re being held at the Colorado resort where I learned to ski, back when dinosaurs still roamed the earth.

A 29-year old Poway man with cerebral palsy is on his way to Tokyo to compete on the US cycling team in the Paralympic Games.

 

Finally…

Police seldom have much of a sense of humor when you blow through the barricades and nearly run over a bunch of bike cops. Los Angeles bike riders have to watch out for LA drivers; bike riders in Maine have to beware of itchy caterpillars.

And this is what the latest installment in the Fast & Furious franchise looks like to a traffic safety advocate.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

3 comments

  1. Andy Stow says:

    Link for “posting a large sign telling drivers not to stop for bike riders” goes to something about best soft mattresses 2021.

  2. Ralph Durham says:

    I noticed that every one of the hatchback bike carriers is illegal to use. A couple directly cover the license plate. The others block you from seeing it is a bike is on the rack. They all will block the tail lights and turn signals.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: