US traffic deaths down slightly, bike deaths up; CA not worst for bike riders; curb protected lanes coming to 7th Street

My apologies. 

I inadvertently posted this post and emailed it to subscribers before I had a chance to finish editing it.

So if you received a mistake-filled draft, I’m sorry for the mistake.

………

The Washington Post is reporting that traffic deaths fell slightly in the US in the first nine months of last year.

According to the paper, traffic fatalities were down 0.2 percent compared to the same period last year, a welcome if modest drop after record increases during the pandemic.

Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, aka NHTSA, showed nearly 31,800 people were killed in crashes from January through September. That follows increases of 7 percent in 2020 and 10.5 percent in 2021.

However, the news isn’t as good for bike riders and pedestrians. Deaths continued to climb two percent for pedestrians and eight percent for people on bicycles in the first six months of 2022; nine month figures aren’t currently available.

………

Hats off to Nebraska, which was named the nation’s safest state for people on bicycles, where just 15 people died in bicycle-related crashes over the past decade, even as the Bike League ranks it the second-least bike friendly state.

Neighboring South Dakota came in second in the NHTSA’s bike safety ranking, while placing fifth from the bottom in the Bike League’s assessment.

Not surprisingly, Florida and Louisiana ranked first and second from the bottom as the nation’s most dangerous states for bike riders.

California was apparently somewhere in the middle, since it doesn’t show up in the top ten states, or the bottom five.

………

Work is proceeding on the long-promised curb protected bike lane on 7th Street between Figueroa and San Pedro streets in DTLA, which was one of the conditions for approving construction of the 62-story Wilshire Grand Center.

………

LADWP is funding a half-million dollar program to rent out ebikes for up to nine months with a single $20 donation; however, the former Jump bikes used in the Pacoima program can’t be charged at home, and have to be taken to taken in to have the battery swapped.

………

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

No bias here. A Staten Island columnist complains about efforts to expand Vision Zero and speed cams throughout the state, taking away his God-given right to a) speed, and b) kill people with his car, apparently.

No bias here, either. North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina is proposing a daytime ban on bikes at the beach this summer, with bikes prohibited from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm. Because apparently, beaches are only for people in cars.

After a German bike rider slammed into the trunk of a turning car after being right hooked, The Sun newspaper tries to stir up controversy by asking who was in the wrong.

………

Local 

Let’s give a grateful thank you to Pasadena’s Lin Realty, whose staff built 150 bikes to donate to the city’s Boys and Girls Club.

The recently passed federal budget bill includes $22.6 million in earmarks for coastal cities, with $1 million of that budgeted to the Manhattan Beach Safe Cycling Project, which is intended to provide a safe bike route to the beachfront Marvin Braude Bike Trail by way of Highland and 45th Street.

 

State

The nationwide Black Girls Do Bike organization is celebrating its first ten years with a meetup in San Diego at the end of August, coinciding with the annual Bike the Bay ride. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

A Folsom man is suing the city over dangerous road conditions after he was struck by a turning driver while riding in a bike lane.

 

National

NPR talks with Cycling Savvy bicycle safety instructor John Schubert about how to safely ride a bike in the city.

Momentum Magazine examines three more American cities that have embraced bicycling. And no, Los Angeles is not one of them.

Bike Portland compares advisory lanes in the Oregon city with the ones in Utrecht, the Netherlands, where they originated.

Last year was a bad one for Las Vegas area bike riders and pedestrians, with 14 bicyclists and 72 pedestrians killed in Clark County.

This is what Los Angeles bike riders have to look forward to. An Austin, Texas bike rider recorded a self-driving General Motors’ Cruise robotaxi veering dangerously into a bike lane; fortunately, no one was riding in the bike lane at the time. Waymo is testing its autonomous vehicles in LA in anticipation of rolling out its robotaxi service; no word on whether they’re programed to respond to an extended middle finger. 

Tragic news from Houston, where a man riding in a bike lane with his wife was struck by a motorcyclist traveling at highway speeds on the surface street, killing both men in what a police spokesperson termed a “very avoidable’ crash.

That’s more like it. The Texas Department of Transportation announced plans to invest $250 million in bike and pedestrian projects.

The accused terrorist who killed eight people with a speeding pickup on a Manhattan bike path five years ago reportedly smiled to an FBI agent as he proudly confessed to his murderous rampage.

A Chattanooga, Tennessee woman is suing the local bikeshare provider for nearly $900,000 after she was knocked unconscious when she was thrown from what she says was a defective or poorly maintained bike.

Horrible news from Georgia, where an 11-year old boy was hospitalized after he was attacked by dogs while riding with a friend.

 

International

Good idea. Alberta mounties are using billboards in an effort to find the hit-and-run driver who killed a 45-year old woman riding a bike last July.

English actor Mark Williams is one of us, as the star of the popular Father Brown murder mystery series fell off his bike while filming; fortunately, he only hurt his pride.

Britain’s anti-bike lawyer who calls himself Mr. Loophole shocked visitors to his website by suggesting that drivers make it their New Years resolution to give bike riders more space when passing.

Dublin artists are concerned that plans for a separated bike lane could destroy a 40-year old tradition of an open-air art gallery, since the bikeway would mean they couldn’t park right next to the park fence they use to display their works. Because apparently, it’s impossible to park further away and use a dolly or some other device to transport their paintings another few feet.

An Irish court heard a 54-year old father riding a bicycle was killed by a semi truck driver who attempted to pass him just 20 inches from the victim’s handlebars — or the length of three or four soup spoons, as the prosecutor described it.

Hanoi will mark this month’s Tet lunar new year celebration by rolling out the city’s first bikeshare system.

Chinese bikeshare company Mobike’s Australian branch has gone into liquidation following a second failed attempt to crack the Aussie market, leaving over 1600 bikes worth about $1.3 million abandoned on the streets and in warehouses.

 

Competitive Cycling

The trial continues for two men accused of the masked home invasion robbery of British cycling great Mark Cavendish and his family, as Cavendish describes getting punched by a robber and having a knife held to his throat.

Forty-seven-year old Cat 3 cyclist Noslen Ruiz-Gutierrez received a four-year doping ban (scroll down) after a urine test revealed six — count ’em, 6 — banned substances; Ruiz-Gutierrez argued that his doping didn’t matter because he races for recreation, not competition. Sure, try telling that to the other racers he’s not competing against.

 

Finally…

At last, an ebike designed to move your anvils. And repeat after me — when you’re carrying meth on your bike at 2 am, put a damn light on it, already.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

 

One comment

  1. J says:

    KCRW answers CAN YOU DO WORSE than LANDFILL SHARED EBIKES WHILE SPENDING ENOUGH TO BUY A NEW EV CAR FOR EVERY BORROWER oF THE BIKES THEY CANT AFFORD TO PROVIDE A CHARGER FOR?

    It is insane they can modify them for user charging or do short term use not push them out half a year spending all the cash on jobs with no work to do!

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: