Archive for bikinginla

Morning Links: Roads closed in Griffith Park, Lyft fights dooring, and bike transponders aren’t the answer

You might want to put off that Griffith Park ride for a few weeks.

Or maybe find another route. 

The roads leading to and around the famed Griffith Observatory will be closed to all traffic for the next two weeks for construction work.

And yes, that includes bicycles.

KNBC-4 has a map showing which roads are closed

Photo from the Griffith Observatory’s Facebook page.

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They get it.

Lyft will start sending its customers a notice ten minutes into their rides telling them to watch for bikes and scooters at the end of the ride. 

They’ll also encourage ride hailing users to employ the Dutch Reach when they open the door to get out, to avoid dooring anyone. 

Which only makes sense, since some of those people at risk of dooring could be their own bikeshare and e-scooter users

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No, the solution to traffic safety is not to make bike riders and pedestrians wear transponders so we don’t get killed. 

But congratulations to a pair of Florida university students who won second place with the idea

Now, if they could just invent one to create a force field that would repel any motor vehicle that came within three feet of me and my bike, I’m in. 

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More on the heartbreaking death of DC bike advocate Dave Salovesh. 

A DC website gives a glimpse of just how much his death impacted the city, including a statement from the local Bicycle Advisory Council, as well as comments from a number of city council members. 

The Greater Greater Washington website relays the grief of the bicycling community

Streetsblog says Salovesh’s death shows the slow progress DC is making towards safer streets

DCist says frankly, it’s personal this time, as the cycling community ramps up activism in the wake of the crash

An American expat and former DC resident now living in the Netherlands talks about the loss of her friend.

And a woman writes that no one should lose a friend to a traffic crash

Meanwhile, an advocacy group will hold a Portland, Oregon rally calling for no more traffic deaths after a woman was killed crossing the street. 

Sadly, things like that happen in Los Angeles nearly every day. But except in very rare cases, no one does a thing. 

That has to change. 

Now. 

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Local

A gang member convicted of killing an LA cop was found dead in his Death Row cell Saturday morning; he was convicted of killing Los Angeles County Office of Public Safety Capt. Michael Sparkes while the off-duty officer was out for a bike ride. 

A writer for Wired says your cellphone could help Metro with a radical remake of the LA bus system, showing when, where and how far Angelenos actually travel, regardless of mode; surprisingly, it shows that only 16% of trips in the city are longer than ten miles. 

Bicycling looks at LA’s new plan to install permanent signs as memorials to fallen bike riders

LA Taco wants to know if you can live without your car for a day

After moving from New York to Pasadena, a bike commuter suddenly finds his coworkers riding to work because they didn’t want him to show them up

A chef at Gladstones in Long Beach is riding in this year’s 300-mile Chefs Cycle for No Kid Hungry.

 

State

The Santa Ana River bike trail will be closed off and on for the demolition of a bridge on the 405 where it crosses the river; OCTA promises there will be a well-marked detour in place when the trail shuts down. 

An arrest has been made in the hit-and-run crash that killed a Jurupa Valley bike rider Saturday night. 

A man ran off after he was caught spray painting a bike path on the Santa Barbara City College. No word on what he was painting

A San Francisco columnist says the best of the outdoors is always a surprise after encountering a pride of peacocks while riding with his wife. 

You’ve got to be kidding. The case against a 75-year old Healdsburg driver for killing a bike rider ended in a hung jury — even though the man was driving on the wrong side of the road to pass a slow-moving truck when he struck the woman as she was participating in a charity ride. 

 

National

Great idea. In addition to rating cities for bike friendliness, People for Bikes is now providing user generated bike routes in cities around the US. You can download the app here. Do I really need to mention that the bicycle advocacy  group ranks my hometown as the country’s best bike city. Which only happened decades after my last ride there

A website devoted to fighting poverty says fining poor people for jaywalking won’t stop traffic fatalities when the real problem is dangerous streets and drivers.

Bike Portland’s Jonathan Maus explains why Oregon should adopt the Idaho Stop Law the third time around. The same argument holds for California. And pretty well everywhere else

No bias here. After a woman drives onto the shoulder of a highway and kills a man on a bike, the Idaho state police feel compelled to point out that he wasn’t wearing a helmet, as if that somehow contributed to the crash. And at highway speeds, a crash like that probably wouldn’t have been survivable, with or without one

Houston is adding 19 miles of bike lanes, many in underserved communities where people rely on their bikes to get around

Speaking of Houston, there’s a special place in hell for the bike-riding man who stole a 94-year old woman’s wheelchair. Fortunately, her neighbor was able to record the theft, and chase the man down to get it back; police recognized the man in the video, and made a quick arrest. 

Bicycling will now be an official part of PE classes in Tulsa OK elementary and middle schools

Los Angeles bike riders will be happy to learn bike lanes are coming to Melrose. Except in this case, the Melrose is in the Boston area. Meanwhile, the Boston Globe says instead of redesigning streets for people on bikes and on foot, we should wait so they’ll accommodate vehicles that don’t even exist yet.

The NYPD continued its bike-unfriendly ways, arresting the organizer of an informal bike relay race and baked goods ride for a four-year old open container violation before the race could even start. Then confiscated participants bicycles for not having bike bells. 

New York Streetsblog relates the story of a bike rider who was hit by an apparent cop in an unmarked car making an illegal U-turn, and the uniformed cops who showed up refused to do anything about it before the man drove off without identifying himself. Naturally, the NYPD denied he was one of theirs. 

New York bikeshare users are getting lawyers after suffering “grotesque” injuries caused by the braking problem on ebikes provided by Lyft, which operates the city’s Citi Bike docked bikeshare. 

The case against a Virginia landscaper will go before a grand jury; he’s accused of helping one of his employees coverup the hit-and-run that killed a bike rider, fixing the company truck and telling his staff to swear it was a deer. And to stick to their stories. 

There’s a special place in hell as well for the 41-year old man who fatally shot a 14-year old Jackson MS boy to take his bicycle

Jimmy Buffett’s hometown of Mobile, Alabama is getting a new green bike lane, as the mayor works to make the city’s waterfront more welcoming for bike riders and pedestrians

A Georgia bike rider was busted for beating up another man who was riding on a bike path with his wife, after swearing at them about the “rules of the trail.”

 

International

Once again, dozens of dockless bikes end up in a trash heap, after a bikeshare provider in Kingston, Ontario replaces them with a newer model. And once again, dozens of kids and low income people who could have put them to good use won’t. 

A writer for the New York Times rents a Dutch bike, and rides through Holland in search of Rembrandt’s tulips.

A New Zealand automotive website wants to know why Aukland is hiding crash data.  

Chinese dockless bikeshare provider Ofo has officially gotten the boot from Singapore

 

Finally…

From pro cyclist to Goblin-inducing healer. No, a 16-person boat is not a bike, pedal-powered or otherwise. 

And if you’re riding drunk, try not to pound on a driver’s window and rip off a windshield wiper after a close pass. 

Then again, don’t do it sober, either.

Morning Links: DC bike advocate Dave Salovesh killed, DTLA cycle tracks starts work, and Metro Bikes free today

I lost a follower on Twitter last weekend. 

Which is nothing new.

Except this time it happened the worst possible way. 

Like a number of other people, I’ve followed Dave Salovesh, aka @darsal, for some time. And vice versa, for reasons only he knew.

The extremely popular DC bike advocate has been an outspoken supporter of protected bike lanes and safer streets, as well as taking action now to fight climate change. I’ve enjoyed his humor and insights, and learned a lot from him over the years.

Sadly, we won’t be following each other anymore.

Salovesh was killed Friday morning when the speeding driver of a stolen van ran a red light, crashed into a car and slammed into his bicycle before crashing into a tree.

It could be argued that he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time, collateral damage to someone else’s crime.

Except he was riding on one of the city’s most dangerous streets, where Salovesh had been fighting to get a protected bike lane.

Whether that would have been enough to save him, we’ll never know.  

Meanwhile, a bicycle columnist for a DC weekly remembers Salovesh as his good friend, confessing to raw emotions while adding that bike advocacy will go on, but it will be far less meaningful without him.

Over two hundred bike riders held a vigil and ghost bike ceremony in his honor on Sunday, starting and ending at the spot where the speeding car thief took his life. 

DC TV station calls his death a cruel irony, while bike riders attending the vigil demand for safer streets for all bicyclists

And the city announced, just a little too late, that it would increase enforcement against drivers who stop or park in bike lanes.  

Which is another of the issues Salovesh had long fought for.

Meanwhile, I’ve lost an ally and a friend, albeit one Ive never met. 

And now, never will.

Photo of Dave Salovesh’s ghost bike and the spot where the driver’s car came to rest by Ryan Keefe

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LADOT is beginning work next weekend to convert the bike lanes on Spring and Main Streets in DTLA to two-way protected cycle tracks. 

Now let’s just hope they also do something to keep drivers the hell out of them. 

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Metro, Metrolink and other SoCal transit systems are offering free rides today in honor of Earth Day.

They’re also providing free rides on the Metro Bike bikeshare system. 

Or you can just ride your own bike, which is always free, with or without a code. 

Meanwhile, Metro celebrates Earth Day by beginning a three-year detour of the Expo Line bike path next to Jefferson Blvd today

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LA’s hit-and-run epidemic struck close to home last week, when a man was murdered by a hit-and-run driver on Sunset Blvd just walking distance from our apartment.

Even with the cane I’m currently confined to.

Compounding the tragedy, the victim was an Australian man who had been released from prison 12 years after he was wrongly convicted of murder.

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Pinkbike celebrated the weekend with videos of epic mountain bike fails. 

On the other hand, at least these people were out there riding, so there’s that.

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Local

Westwood Village applies for grants to improve the appearance and walkability of Westwood Blvd, as well as install bike racks. But apparently forgets to improve the actual streets and add bike lanes so people might actually use them. 

A writer for the USC paper says the future of LA sustainability begins with students, urging them to get involved at every level of planning and policy, including supporting more bike lanes. 

The LACBC’s next Sunday Funday Ride rolls May 5th, offering a preview of June’s popular LA River Ride

Claremont police ticketed bike riders and drivers in a crosswalk crackdown for rolling through the crosswalk instead of stopping for pedestrians, as the law requires. 

Food delivery drivers will get their own dedicated parking spaces in front of two restaurants in downtown Santa Monica for a three-month trial to keep them from double-parking in the bike lane. Now maybe they can do something about the FedEx and UPS drivers who park in the bike lanes on Ocean and San Vicente on a daily basis

 

State

Turns out the thief who stole a $5,000 bike from the Cyclist bike shop in Santa Ana just wanted to ride it, and cut off the ends of the handlebars because he’s a Phil Gaimon fan.

A San Diego community planning board voted to approve plans for a new cycle track in Point Loma

A bike rider was lucky to escape with minor injuries following a crash with a hit-and-run driver near the University of San Diego. 

A “gypsy family” of pedicab drivers stops in Coachella to provide rides at the music festival, one of several they serve as they make their way around the country. 

A San Jose newspaper says the popular road up Mt. Diablo needs more bike turnouts allowing drivers to pass bike riders without crossing the center line, and hopefully avoid the next crash. 

In a horrifying story, the CHP is looking for a hit-and-run driver who left a Merced woman to die on the side of the road after crashing into her bicycle; her body was found at 1 pm, hours after she was struck the previous evening. Unfortunately, there’s no way to know if she would have survived if she had been found sooner. Or if the coward who hit her had stopped to get help. 

 

National

Seattle bicyclists rode to all 27 public library branches in the city in an 11-hour, 70-mile ride to support investing in the city’s library system.

Speaking of Seattle, the city is bucking the trend by maintaining a fleet of dockless bikeshare bikes, even as providers pull dockless bicycles in favor of e-scooters. 

Talk about not getting it. A Texas man will spend the next ten years behind bars after repeatedly violating the terms of his probation for the hit-and-run death of a bike rider; he had originally gotten out after serving just 17 days of a two-year sentence thanks to a loophole in the law. You’d think someone would have enough sense to keep their nose clean after a gift like that. But apparently  you’d be wrong

She gets it. A Chicago letter writer says make safer bike lanes the norm

A Michigan outdoor campaign is putting a face on distracted driving by plastering photos of the victims of distracted drivers on billboards.

A Rhode Island man has spent the past nine years looking for a pair of nurses to thank them for saving his life after his front wheel locked up on a bike path.

A 74-year old New York man says he was attacked by a lawless gang of teenage bicyclists swarming down a riverfront path. 

The head of New York’s TransAlt advocacy group says the NYPD has to stop going out of its way to blame the victims

DC bike cops bust a prodigious bike thief, but aren’t able to find any of the bicycles he allegedly stole. 

Kindhearted Virginia deputies pitched in to buy a physically and emotionally impaired man a new bicycle when his was stolen, after they learned he had overcome the odds by learning to walk again following a crash left him in a coma.  

A South Carolina newspaper says not every street in the state has to be a Complete Street, but there are some where it’s necessary.   

 

International

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that traffic collisions are the leading cause of death for children and young adults

London’s formerly bike-friendly Sunday Times now says a reported drop in bicycling levels in the UK is a victory for motorists “in their long-running battle with cyclists.”

A writer for The Guardian says cars are ruining our lives and triggering environmental disasters, and must be phased out within ten years

Dutch bike maker VanMoof has sold 11,000 ebikes worth a cool $33 million and change

Afghan women are demanding that their rights be preserved in any peace talks, including the hard-won ability to ride a bicycle. 

South African police are looking for a hit-and-run driver who fled the scene on foot after plowing into a 10 bicyclists, killing one and injuring seven others.

In a case of keeping an elderly driver on the road until it’s too late, an 86-year Australian man faces charges for dragging a food delivery rider under his car the length of a football field before fleeing the scene; the 23-year old woman he hit suffered extensive injuries, including severe burns. 

In yet another case of an elderly driver who shouldn’t be, a Japanese man crashed his car into a group of people waiting at an intersection, killing a mother and daughter who were sharing a bicycle and injuring eight others. Police suspect the 87-year old driver hit the gas pedal instead of the brake

Taiwan’s Penghu archipelago, made up of more than 90 islands and islets, is promoting bicycling tourism, saying it’s the best way for tourists to explore the area

Beijing is opening a four-mile, bicycle-only roadway with one lane in each direction, along with a reversible lane in the middle. 

 

Competitive Cycling

USA Cycling will field a national team at the Amgen Tour of California, naming ten young riders the team will be chosen from, including one who competes for an LA team. 

Belgium is mourning the death of track cycling great Patrick Sercu, considered one of the greatest of all time.

 

Finally…

Banned from riding your bike in a not-so-public public park. When you decide anyone who doesn’t ride like you do and go out of their way to ride in a bike lane is a selfish, entitled jerk.  

And if you’re carrying a number of controlled substances on your bike, don’t break any bylaws.

Whatever that means. 

Bike rider killed in Jurupa Valley; no details available

Yet another bike rider has been killed in Jurupa Valley.

And as usual, there’s virtually no information available.

According to the Riverside Press-Enterprise, someone died while riding a bicycle on the 8800 block of Limonite Ave around 11:07 Saturday night.

There’s no word on whether the victim was a man or a woman, whether the death was the result of a crash, or whether there was anyone else involved.

Hopefully we’ll get more information soon.

This is at least the 20th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fourth that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

It’s also at least the fifth bike rider to be killed in Jurupa Valley since the city of just 100,000 people was incorporated in 2011.

Hopefully city leaders will care enough to determine the cause and do something about it.

Update: According to a report on KNBC-4, which hasn’t been posted online yet, the victim was a man who was killed in a hit-and-run.

Update 2: The victim has been identified as 30-year old Rigoberto Guzman.

He was struck by a vehicle driven by 26-year old Andrew Scott Walters at the intersection of Van Buren Blvd and Limonite Ave around 11 pm Saturday. The force of the impact threw him to the far side of the road, where he died within a few minutes after impact.

Walters was arrested at his home after fleeing the scene, and booked on suspicion of hit-and-run resulting in death; he was released on $75,000 bond.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Rigoberto Guzman and his loved ones.

Morning Links: Happy Bicycle Day, murder charge for OC driver, and Taylor Swift drops a new blue bike

Happy Bicycle Day.

Which doesn’t actually have much to do with bicycles at all. Or riding them, for that matter.

It’s the 76th anniversary of the day Albert Hoffman invented LSD, and discovered its hallucinogenic effects while riding his bike home.

So turn on, tune in, drop out, and kick back while we take a look the day’s bike news.

Then get out and go for a ride yourself.

Preferably without the influence of any mind-altering substances.

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They take traffic crime seriously in Orange County.

Victor Manuel Romero, the allegedly highly intoxicated hit-and-run driver who killed bike rider Ray MacDonald in Huntington Beach the day after his birthday, will be arraigned today on a single count of murder.

Which most likely means this isn’t his first DUI, since drunk and stoned drivers convicted in California are required to sign a letter indicating they could face a murder charge if they kill someone while driving under the influence in the future.

Although the actions of some drivers are so despicable that they should face a murder charge either way.

This is one of those cases.

And unlike Los Angeles, the charges are unlikely to be plea bargained down to a misdemeanor.

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Taylor Swift may or may not be one of us. But at least she knows the power of a pretty blue bike.


On the other hand, newly 40-year old Kourtney Kardashian is one of us, though apparently, not very good at it.

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Evidently, motorized scooters are nothing new.

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The Bicycle Tree bike co-op rides to savor the flavor of Santa Ana tomorrow.

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If you’re going to crash into brick walls, maybe you should wear a helmet. And bring a dog treat.

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Local

Metro is considering new regulations to wrangle the tangle of e-scooters and dockless bikeshares at their stations.

LAPD busted a ring of scooter-riding car burglars, who’d come down from Oakland on the weekends and rent e-scooters to ride around Hollywood breaking into cars.

Thanks to Culver City for putting new bike lanes on Overland Blvd.

Oopsie. Sit-down scooter company Wheels, which recently launched with a bizarre Sunset Strip party for B and C list celebs, has been fined $40,000 and counting for operating in Santa Monica without a permit. Although they’ve probably more than made up for it by renting scooters to all those red carpet folks, right?

Santa Monica Spoke has a busy social calendar, starting with a Kidical Mass ride tomorrow, and a membership meeting on the 27th.

State

A Bakersfield letter writer says no, the bike path is for everyone, not just the people on two wheels.

National

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss asks the burning question why do Americans hate bikes so much? On a related subject, the writers and producers of ABC’s Blackish seem to share that sentiment, finding humor in threatening people on bicycles.

Lime is working on a sensor system to detect drunk users and keep them safe. When they have it up and running, maybe they can pass it on to carmakers.

Tres shock! A new Seattle report shows that bikeshare use drops when it rains. And drops even more when it snows.

A Spokane WA state senator agrees to release funding for the city’s road projects after they promise to build a new bike trail. Although the sharrows the city promised as part of the agreement won’t do anything but help drivers improve their aim.

No bias here. A Las Vegas paper notes that a bike rider was hit by a car while crossing a street outside of a marked crosswalk. Even though bike riders aren’t required to use crosswalks, or even allowed to in many places. And never mind that they take until the fifth paragraph to even mention in passing that the car had a driver.

San Antonio TX suggests making bicyclists second class citizens by shunting them off onto side streets when a major boulevard gets a makeover in order to make more room for cars, instead of installing the protected bike lane advocates are asking for. Meanwhile, an op-ed in a San Antonio paper says more needs to be done to protect riders.

The family of the first bikeshare user to be killed in the US received a $5.25 million jury verdict, after turning down a half million dollar settlement offer from the company the truck driver who killed her worked for.

Once again, a bike rider is a hero. After an Indiana cop struggled to subdue a driver, a man jumped off his bicycle and helped bring the suspect under control and get handcuffs on him.

After a Maine restaurant owner offered to give away two children’s bikes on Easter Sunday, kindhearted business owners and local residents pitched in another 45 bikes and helmets.

A New Hampshire couple spent $150 of their own money to buy a new bike for a disabled Boston-area veteran they’d never met after learning that the bike he relied on for his only form of transportation was stolen outside a Dollar Store.

While Los Angeles continues to build bike lanes at a glacial pace — protected or otherwise — a new bill in New York would commit the city to building a minimum of 100 miles of protected bike lanes a year for the seven-year period starting next year.

No bias here, either. According to the New York Daily News, a man was killed when he somehow magically fell off his bike into the side of a passing truck. A far more likely explanation is the driver passed too close, either sideswiping the victim or causing him to lose control; Gothamist doesn’t seem to buy it, either.

If New York ever gets around to legalizing e-scooters, a new startup is offering to provide docking and charging stations for up to 10,000 scooters and ebikes. Although that kind of defeats the purpose of dockless bikeshare and scooters.

In news that should surprise absolutely no one, new stats show that New York Mayor de Blasio’s heavy-handed crackdown on ebikes is based on nothing more than fear and hyperbole; just nine of the 11,115 pedestrians injured in the city were struck by someone on an ebike.

Delaware police add insult to injury — literally — by ticketing a woman for failing to yield after she was hospitalized when her bike was struck by a driver’s car.

President Trump was scheduled to honor participants in a Wounded Warriors Ride after they reached the White House on Thursday.

International

A Winnipeg, Canada cop is being investigated after a bike rider alleged the officer pepper sprayed him and threatened him with a baton after he refused to let the cop search his backpack.

That’s more like it. Drivers in the UK who block bike boxes could be subject to the equivalent of a $130 fine and three points against their licenses. If the police actually enforce it, that is. Note: I originally wrote they’d be subject to a three pint penalty, which would be much more likely to result in compliance.

A British man rode his bike around the world while stoned to prove that stoners aren’t lazy. No, just use poor judgement, and are willing violate DUI laws in countless countries.

The founder of a million dollar English bikepacking bag maker learned learned how to do it by watching instructional videos on YouTube.

Scottish stunt rider Danny MacAskill looks back on his ten-year career, saying his only regret is filming a video at the Playboy Mansion.

Forget bike racks on the front of buses. A new Scottish bus that takes riders to a popular mountain biking area has two racks inside to accommodate riders.

Nigerian university students destroyed a Mercedes Benz after the driver ran down a bike rider and tried to flee the scene; no word on whether the driver escaped or was beaten by the crowd. Although it’s unclear what type of bike the story refers to; the same word could refer to a bicycle or a motorcycle.

Competitive Cycling

Former Cervelo-Bigla pro Doris Schweizer is alleging an abusive environment on the team, claiming she was denied medical treatment after suffering a severe concussion, and forbidden from talking with other riders.

Organizers of Minnesota’s North Star Grand Prix have started a crowdfunding campaign to raise $200,000 by May 3rd or they’ll have to cancel the race this year, just like last year. So far the page has raised $5,985, with just $194,015 to go.

A Spokane writer says Rebecca Twigg puts a new, relatable face on homelessness, noting that she’s turned down offers of help, preferring to focus on the half million people in the US who need help to put a roof over their heads.

A fund has been set up in the name of fallen track cyclist Kelly Catlin to support young women’s track cyclists; Catlin recently took her own life after suffering a serious concussion in a crash last year.

Finally…

Nothing like a custom, hand-crafted camo paint job on your new ebike to help ensure drivers won’t see you. If you’re going to use your bike seat as a drug stash, try to hide it from the cops’ hidden cameras.

And how can anyone make fun of our bike shorts when we’re just following the year’s hottest fashion trend?

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Chag Sameach and Happy Easter to all those celebrating the respective holidays this weekend.

Update: Bike rider killed in Sun Valley hit-and-run Thursday night

Once again, a man has lost life, simply for riding a bicycle.

And once again, a coward has fled the scene instead of stopping to take responsibility, this time in Sun Valley.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the victim was struck by the driver of a red Dodge sedan while riding his bike at 8558 North San Fernando Road in Sun Valley around 8:35 pm Thursday.

The driver kept going without slowing down. Witnesses attempted to follow, but were unable to catch him or capture his license plate.

No word on how or why the hit-and-run crash occurred.

A street view shows a narrow two lane street squeezed between railroad tracks and an industrial district.

Anyone with information on the hit-and-run is urged to call the LAPD at 877/527-3247. And as always, there is a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the driver in any fatal hit-and-run crash.

This is at least the 19th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also the fourth in the City of Los Angeles.

Update: The LAPD is now saying the victim was a pedestrian who was walking across the street outside of a crosswalk. Still no ID on the victim, and no explanation for why witnesses said he was riding a bicycle. 

Update 2: Family members have identified the victim as Samuel Hernandez; sadly, he won’t be there to witness his daughter’s graduation from Cal State Northridge next month.

They also clarified that he was walking his bike across the street when he was killed. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Samuel Hernandez and his loved ones.

 

Morning Links: US cycling legend Rebecca Twigg homeless in Seattle, hero bike rider, and the war on bikes

Back in ’80s, I was in love with Rebecca Twigg.

Then again, so was just about other every straight male who knew a derailleur from domestique.

She won my heart, and so many others, when she claimed the ’83 Coors Classic stage race, followed by a silver medal in the road race at the ’84 Olympics, finishing second to her American teammate Connie Carpenter.

And followed that with a pursuit bronze medal in ’92.

Along with six world track titles and 16 US championships before, after and in between.

She was brilliant, charming and beautiful. And could drop you like freshman English without breaking a sweat.

So it broke my heart to learn that Rebecca Twigg has spent nearly five years living on the streets of Seattle.

According to the Seattle Times,

Twigg, 56, agreed to share her story to convince the public that not all homeless people are addicted to drugs or alcohol; that there are many like her, who have struggled with employment and are “confused,” as she said she is, about what to do next with their lives. She did not want to discuss mental health but feels it should be treated more seriously in Washington.

“Some of the hard days are really painful when you’re training for racing,” Twigg said, “but being homeless, when you have little hope or knowledge of where the finish line is going to be, is just as hard.”

She ended up homeless after two failed marriages, and struggling to fit into a workplace where she felt she just didn’t belong.

It was a familiar position, after her mother had kicked her out at 14, and she settled into the nomadic life of a bike racer.

Sadly, it’s not unusual for athletes to struggle after retiring, having spent a lifetime training and competing in a highly structured world.

And the article hints at another possible reason, mentioning a Texas crash that resulted in 13 stitches to her head — and probably a concussion.

Likely not the first one either. Or the last, in those pre-helmet, leather hairnet days.

But the saddest part of all is that Rebecca Twigg been forgotten by the cycling world she sacrificed her youth for.

And allowed to fall through the cracks, and onto the streets.

Let’s hope this news wakes up women’s cycling and bike racing’s governing bodies. So that someone, somewhere gives her the hand up she needs to get her life back together, and off the streets, once and for all.

And gives her the job she deserves in the sport she used to love, and knows so well.

Photo from Wikipedia.

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Once again, a bike rider was the hero.

An Anaheim man went on a wild crime rampage in Lake Forest on Wednesday, breaking into a home, stabbing a woman multiple times, jacking her car, crashing it into another woman walking on the sidewalk, threatening some Good Samaritans, and trying to jack a couple more cars.

All in just nine minutes.

It all came to a burning end when 56-year old bike rider Eric Young pepper sprayed the man after nearly getting run down by him and witnessing the crime spree.

After four or five doses of pepper spray, the one-man crime wave sat down on the curb and waited for police to take him into custody.

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

A British bike rider was bloodied and suffered a badly broken nose after he was knocked off his bike by a speeding driver, then punched repeatedly by a passenger in her car.

Then again, people on bikes aren’t always the good guys. A New York woman was punched in the face by a man on a bike, who shouted “This is my bock, bitch!” before riding off. Shockingly, the NYPD didn’t seem to care, despite their usual policy of siding with anyone against people on bicycles.

And Boston police are looking for a bike-riding man who shattered a bus window with his fist in an attempt to get the driver to open the door. Because terrorizing bus drivers and their passengers is always the best way to get them to let you in.

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A word for the wise, as demonstrated by a dirt biker.

Always make sure there’s solid ground directly in front of you. Because bikes, motorized or otherwise, still can’t fly.

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Local

No shit. County officials consider removing mobile shooting ranges from the sheriff’s station in Marina del Rey, after a suggestion that having a shooting range in close proximity to one of the county’s most popular bike paths may not be the best idea.

State

No, Outside, it’s not the perfect Highway 1 road trip along the California coast unless you do it on two wheels.

Caltrain goes the wrong way on accommodating bike riders.

The man who stole a $5,000 bicycle from Costa Mesa’s Cyclist bike shop returned it because his face had been plastered everywhere, and he was hoping to get the $1,000 reward.

In a bizarre ruling, a California appeals court barred the unacknowledged daughter of fallen OC cyclist Amine Britel from suing the woman who killed him, ruling she didn’t have standing because she wasn’t a legal heir since she didn’t establish paternity until after he died. And didn’t suffer a loss because she never knew him anyway. Thanks to Jeffrey Fylling for the heads-up.

Bakersfield wants your input on how to improve bicycling and the city’s streets. I’ll go out on a limb here, and guess that removing cars from them is probably a nonstarter.

San Francisco is installing a protected bike lane on one of the city’s most dangerous streets. But only in some sections.

A San Francisco man suffered life-threatening injuries when he was struck by a driver while riding his bike Wednesday morning.

A new study from a UC Davis researcher shows that ped-assist ebikes really do get people out of their cars; up to half of all ebike trips in the study would have otherwise been made by motor vehicle.

National

NACTO says e-scooters have overtaken docked bikeshare as the nation’s third most popular form of shared transportation, behind cars and transit. Although most cars are hardly ever shared.

Lyft can undoubtedly relate to Boeing these days, as their rapid expansion into e-bikeshare has come to a screeching halt due to brake problems. Then again, Lyft hasn’t killed anyone yet, and dealt with the problem once they became aware of it.

No shit part two. A new poll shows Americans think distracted driving is the greatest threat on the roads. Which doesn’t appear to actually stop anyone from doing it.

A teenage boy is a key witness in the case against a Minneapolis cop accused of shooting a woman who had called police to report a possible sexual assault behind her home, although his credibility was questioned after admitting he had smoked weed and downed several shots of whiskey before getting on his bike.

A Rhode Island public radio station says the state’s potholed streets pose a danger to bike riders. Kind of like the streets of Los Angeles, and much of Southern California.

Vision Zero appears to be working in Boston, where the crash rate has gone up, while fatalities were cut in half. People often misunderstand the purpose of Vision Zero, which isn’t to prevent crashes, but to redesign roadways so those crashes don’t kill anyone.

Speaking of Boston, Bicycling looks at that city’s version of LA’s Marathon Crash Ride.

A Delaware man with a rare heart condition embarked on a 5,000-mile bike ride to Alaska in the name of science, even though doctors warned it could kill him.

After a DC resident witnesses a large Critical Mass-type ride roll through her neighborhood, she naturally concludes that all bike riders are a bunch of law-breaking scofflaws who won’t follow the rules, and don’t deserve protected bike lanes.

A New Orleans bike thief is caught on video entering an unlocked gate to steal an unlocked bicycle, then ghost riding the new bike away with his own in tow. But at least he had the courtesy to shut the gate after him.

Taking a page from ghost bikes, a Georgia bike advocate placed a ghost wheelchair at the site where a handicapped man was killed earlier this month.

International

A Vancouver letter writer strains to make the argument that installing bike lanes will lower homeowners’ property values, even though countless studies show the exact opposite.

Life is cheap in Ottawa, Canada, where a driver walked on charges of fleeing the scene after killing a man riding a bike, and covering up the crime by fixing his truck and hiding out at a motel. The judge bought his explanations that he 1) fell asleep while driving, 2) hadn’t been drinking, and 3) fled the scene, hid out from police and destroyed the evidence because he was afraid of racist cops. And no, the judge’s name wasn’t Gullible. But maybe it should be.

An Irish man returned home from an internship in the US to face charges for killing a bike rider in a collision.

Competitive Cycling

About time. A bill under consideration in the California legislature would require bike races and other sporting events to provide equal prize money to men and women.

Bicycling examines the time trial bike Victor Campenaerts used to set a new hour record in Mexico this week.

The apparent leader in a women’s race is nearly taken down by a race moto. And appears to respond the same way anyone else would.

Finally…

How to not smash your bike to bits when you use a rooftop rack. When you’re afraid to ride the local bike path because of all the drivers using it.

And if an ebike can stabilize itself to prevent falls, does it really need you at all?

Morning Links: DA throws book at killer driver, temp road diet flows on Temple, and how to dismount a very tall bike

Before we start, let me offer a special thank you to Ryan Jones for giving me his CycleOps trainer to help rehab my knee and get back on my bike.

Ryan made his very generous offer after I’d tweeted last week that my physical therapist would let me start using one.

I continue to be blown away by the kindness and generosity that so many people have shown since my surgery.

Now if anyone wants to pick up that hospital tab…

And yes, Im kidding. There are people out there who need your help a lot more than I do.

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For once, the LA District Attorney’s office is taking a traffic death seriously, after an e-scooter user was killed in Hollywood early Saturday morning.

And throwing the book at him, according to KCBS-2.

Jared Walter Anderson, 26, is facing a murder charge in addition to one felony count each for vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence, gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, hit-and-run driving resulting in death to another person with allegations of causing great bodily injury and fleeing a pursuing peace officer’s motor vehicle causing death, according to the LA County District Attorney’s Office.

Which sounds good, until you consider they’ll probably bargain it down and let him walk on careless driving, if prior history is any indication.

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A new video shows just how disastrous the planned Temple Street road diet would have been if Councilmembers Mitch O’Farrell and Gil Cedillo hadn’t cancelled it.

Wait.

You mean it doesn’t?

………

It’s been awhile since we’ve heard from Brendan Lyons.

The executive director of Look! Save a Life writes in a op-ed for an Arizona paper that it’s time to stop driving under the influence of electronics.

Lyons founded the nonprofit group after his dream of becoming a firefighter was shattered by a distracted driver while riding his bike.

But let’s extend his call to include all those WiFi-enabled devices that carmakers are building into dashboards in an apparent effort to keep drivers distracted all the time to reduce the excess population.

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Now this is what I call a beautiful bike.

This 1935 Dayton Safety Streamliner sold for nearly $9,500 at a recent auction, despite a pre-sale estimate topping out at five grand.

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In case, like me, you’ve ever wondered how extreme tall bike riders get on and off their bikes.

While moving, no less.

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Local

Former Duarte school board member Edwin Ferguson passed away in his sleep last week at 93; he and his wife were both “avid” bike riders, taking his last bike tour through Croatia when he was 83.

A Long Beach man told police he suffered a superficial wound to his lower torso when he was shot while riding his bike in the Zaferia neighborhood Monday evening, though police could find no evidence of the crime when they searched the area.

State

Calbike is co-sponsoring SB127, which would require Caltrans to follow its own Complete Streets policy on every repaving, maintenance, and rehab project on state highways, which often double as surface streets in urban areas.

The Daily Hive recommends 11 stunning stops along PCH between San Francisco and San Diego for your next ride along the coast. After all, it would be such a waste to drive on a trip like that.

A homeless man in San Francisco was lucky to dodge a manslaughter charge for beating another homeless man with an axe handle in a dispute over a bicycle, after autopsy tests showed his victim actually died from a meth overdose.

San Francisco will keep a closer eye on bikeshare companies after defective brakes were found on Uber’s Jump ebikes, as well as the Lyft-owned Ford GoBike ebikes that were pulled from the streets earlier this week. Jump quietly fixed their brakes, but some riders were still injured.

The attorney for an alleged killer driver says a Sebastopol woman died when she crashed into her boyfriend as they were riding together — which ignores the black scuff mark on her jersey that appears to match the tread of the driver’s tire. He’s charged with vehicular manslaughter for causing the crash, whether or not he actually hit her.

National

A writer for an electric vehicle website calls for a national license to ride ebikes, e-motor scooters and e-motorcycles capable of traveling up to 45 mph. A much better idea is to just treat ebikes like bicycles, while capping speeds at a more reasonable level.

Speaking of ebikes, Bicycling’s Selene Yeager says older riders may get a surprising brain boost from riding ped-assist electrics.

A Washington couple gives away 500 free bike helmets for kids every year in honor of their granddaughter, who died seven years ago after falling off her bike without one.

For once, it really was an accident. An Oklahoma girl is recovering after suffering critical injuries when the bike she was riding broke underneath her as she was speeding downhill; her family has set up a GoFundMe page to help with expenses.

A Missouri cop sort of gets it, saying sharing the roadway works best if we all treat others with respect. Then follows it up by reminding bike riders that cars are bigger than we are, as if anyone traveling by two wheels or two feet could ever forget that.

Chicago approves a $50 million plan to expand its docked bikeshare throughout the city.

Bicycling takes a look at a little bike ride in the Big Apple — the 40-mile, 32,000 rider Five Boro Bike Tour.

New Orleans bike riders approve of a new bollard-protected bike lane on an overpass bridge — even if the rider in the photo is going the wrong way. Meanwhile, a New Orleans councilmember says bike riders need to learn the rules of the road. Unlike, say, motorists, who always obey the letter of the law and never pose a risk to anyone.

Alabama is considering half of the Idaho Stop Law. But instead of allowing bike riders to treat stop signs as yields, as other states have done, it would let bicyclists and motorcyclists treat red lights like stop signs.

Life is cheap in Florida, where a driver walked without a day in jail for killing a man on his bike, despite the obvious violation of the state’s three-foot passing law. But at least he’ll lose his license for a whole year.

International

Writing for Forbes, Carleton Reid says experts agree that painted white lines are not cyclist-protecting force fields; Bikehugger’s Lloyd Alter calls painted bike lanes car magnets.

Be glad you don’t live in British Columbia, where it’s illegal to pass traffic on the right, even when it comes to a full stop. And yes, they expect you to stop next to the cars and wait, even if your path is clear.

A Scottish writer gets on a bike for the first time in 20 years to visit a new Rembrandt exhibit at Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum, calling the artist the world’s first Instagrammer.

No surprise here, as Austria joined Germany in reporting record ebike sales, which now make up a third of the country’s bicycle market.

Competitive Cycling

We have a new hour record holder, as Victor Campenaerts topped Bradley Wiggins’ four-year old record by riding 55.089 kilometers — 34.23 miles — in 60 minutes.

Ayesha McGowan, who is working to become the first black women’s pro cyclist, accuses the announcers at the Sea Otter Classic of making racist and sexist comments.

Finally…

If you’re going to break into a home to watch TV while the family that lives there is still home, try not to leave your bike outside. Probably not the best idea to attack the paramedics who come to your aid after crashing your bike while riding drunk.

And if you get caught with meth in your purse while driving, just tell the cops they’re “healing crystals.”

No, really.

Morning Links: Bike the Vote LA endorses in CD12, Watch for Me in NC, and the war on bikes keeps going on

It’s a light news day, after today’s bike news apparently got crowded out by the tragic burning of Notre Dame Cathedral.

The good news is, however, until John Snow learns to ride a bicycle, or Cersei starts driving, this will continue to remain a Game of Thrones spoiler-free zone.

And before we move on, I hope you’ll join me in thanking Josh Cohen and Cohen Law Partners for renewing their sponsorship of this site for a sixth consecutive year.

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Bike the Vote LA has released their endorsements for the special council election in LA’s 12th Council District.

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A new public service campaign tells North Carolina drivers to “Watch for Me” to reduce bike and pedestrian crashes.

Doesn’t do it for me. But what do you think?

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Repeat after me. The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

A Milwaukee man was severely beaten after flipping off the driver who nearly hit him while he was riding in a bike lane.

My own hard-won advice — never flip off the driver behind you.

For reasons that should be obvious, but for some reason, wasn’t at the time.

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Local

The Long Beach Post wants to know why the city isn’t improving safety on the bridges over the 710, despite the deaths of two people since the first of the year, including a 64-year old woman riding her bicycle.

626 Golden Streets looks forward to nine upcoming open streets events in the LA area. Unfortunately, I’ll have to miss this spring’s events, including the Wilmington CicLAvia at the end of this month, but should be back on my bike in time for the Hollywood/West Hollywood CicLAvia in my own backyard later this year.

State

A Bakersfield letter writer gets as proprietary as any privileged motorist, saying bike trails are for people on bicycles, not people walking or their dogs. Except under California law, any separated pathway without a parallel walkway is considered a multi-use path, regardless of what it’s called.

Bike Magazine looks at some of the new products introduced at last weekend’s Sea Otter Classic in Monterey.

Berkeley police have issued an arrest warrant for a 45-year old driver accused of fleeing the scene after seriously injuring a bike rider in a crash.

Now you can pedal your way across the Oakland Bay. Okay, so it’s an estuary. That doesn’t rhyme.

Stanislaus County bike riders will gather to remember a man who was killed while riding his bike earlier this month; his daughter says the popular rider shouldn’t have been out on his bike that day, after being told to take it easy following a heart procedure.

National

A new survey from the National Safety Council shows that most Americans support lowering speed limits slightly, installing speed and red light cameras, and conducting more sobriety checkpoints. All of which would save lives. And all of which entitled drivers will undoubtedly fight.

Performing intervals twice a week could help you live longer.

A Missouri man got his bike back after spotting it for sale on Craigslist. Except after arranging a sting, the cops got diverted to a domestic disturbance on the way — which just happened to be at the thief’s home, finding the man’s bike inside after the suspect ran away.

Another case of keeping a drunk driver on the streets until its nearly too late, as an alleged drunk driver lost control and just missed a Wisconsin bike rider before slamming into a light pole and running away on foot.

University of Dayton students designed a voice-controlled shifting mechanism for the recumbent belonging to a military vet who lost three limbs in Afghanistan.

After a Louisiana man’s bicycle was stolen while he was working at a restaurant, his kindhearted coworkers raised $300 in just 30 minutes to replace it.

International

CityMetric contributes ten things you should know about ebikes, including that they’re not cheating — and they’re the future.

A local paper says it’s hard to predict the impact of bike lanes versus parking on property values in a Vancouver neighborhood. Even though studies show quality bikeways tend to increase home values.

A British serial bike thief is back behind bars for the next six months after confessing to stealing a bike while already on probation — and while legally prohibited from even touching one.

Speaking of bike theft, an Irish man was lucky to get his bicycle back after spotting it for sale online and contacting the police to set up a sting.

A US Air Force appeals court re-affirmed the conviction of a senior airman sentenced to four years for negligent homicide in the death of a bike rider at Germany’s Ramstein Air Base.

Finally…

Using bikes to paint a portrait of Elvis on the streets of Nashville. Your next bike could have four wheels — but only use two at a time.

And if you’re riding a bike while under the influence and carrying a concealed weapon, put a damn light on it, already.

The bike, not the gun.

And don’t jump into a river trying to get away from the cops.

Morning Links: DUI, murder in H’wood scooter crash; Costa Mesa bike thief busted; and building bike lanes pays

Go ahead and call it murder.

The police are.

According to KTLA-5, a suspected drunk driver is being held on $2 million bail on suspicion of murder and DUI after police watched him hit a e-scooter rider in a Hollywood crosswalk.

The victim was crossing Sunset Blvd at Vine Street at 3:30 Saturday morning when he was struck by a pickup driven by 26-year old Utah resident Jared Walter Anderson.

Anderson then allegedly backed the truck up, and drove over the victim, who was described only as a man in his 30s.

He fled the scene, but was chased down by an LAPD sergeant who had witnessed the crime.

Anderson was previously convicted of DUI in Utah, which makes him eligible for a murder charge under California law.

Then again, murder could be warranted even without the previous conviction, considering that he drove over his victim after hitting him the first time.

Which raises the question of whether the crash may have been intentional.

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Good news on the bike theft front.

The schmuck who stole a $5,000 bicycle from Costa Mesa’s Cyclist bike shop has been arrested after returning the bike at the urging of relatives.

Paul Verdugo Jr, a 42-year old transient, pled not guilty to charges of grand theft, identity theft and receiving stolen property, the latter two for the false ID he handed a shop worker before riding off with the bike while on a test ride.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes keeps picking up speed.

A Maryland woman was charged with first degree assault for making a U-turn after passing a bike rider, then intentionally attempting to run him down, forcing the man to jump off his bike before she crashed into it.

They always tell you to make eye contact with drivers. But fail to mention that the sidewalk-blocking Florida driver you’re trying to get past may get out of his car and punch you repeatedly.

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It pays to build bike lanes.

No, literally.

A new study shows that if Kansas City fully built out its bike plan, local businesses would benefit to the tune of $500 million in increased sales over the next 20 years.

And more importantly, over 700 lives would be saved.

Which makes you wonder just how many lives, and how much money, Los Angeles is needlessly throwing away by leaving its bike plan gathering dust on the shelf.

Like every other LA bike plan that’s come before it.

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Local

Streetsblog says the push for safety improvements is picking up speed in Silver Lake. And not just on Rowena.

Uber and Lyft are holding off on finalizing their permits to put dockless e-scooters and bikeshare on the streets of Los Angeles over concerns about how their usage data will be used.

The Rose Bowl will open its roads for a 3.1-mile mini-ciclovia after next month’s final stage of the Amgen Tour of California, though you may have to register first.

This is who we share the roads with. A man has been sentenced to 22 years in prison for a street racing crash that killed three people in two other vehicles three years ago. Now if we could just see that kind of justice for people on bicycles for a change.

Great news! The fundraiser for the infant son of fallen bicyclist Frederick “Woon” Frazier now sits at nearly $8,000 — just $2,000 short of the $10,000 goal.

State

They get it. San Diego is installing 330 on-street parking corrals for dockless bicycles and e-scooters in the downtown area. Unlike Los Angeles, which prefers to use precious sidewalk space instead of putting them in the street where they belong.

The San Diego Union-Tribune picks up the story of state wildlife officials blocking access to illegal trails in the Carlsbad Highlands Ecological Reserve, and telling miscreant trespassing bike riders to stay the hell out.

Life is cheap in El Cajon, where a red light-running hit-and-run driver is expected to be sentenced to just four years behind bars for a crash that left a nine-year old boy with permanent injuries — despite driving without a license, and with drug paraphernalia in her car.

Sunnyvale is re-evaluating its commitment to bikeshare after Lime left them in the lurch.

Specialized teams up with a Stanford researcher to figure out how bicycling affects your brain. Aside from making you unusually happy, that is.

A Santa Rosa man was busted for DUI after crashing into two bicyclists while allegedly driving stoned —  at 7:30 in the morning, no less; the victims suffered moderate to major injuries.

Sad news from Sacramento, where a bike rider was killed in a crash after allegedly riding through a red light.

National

A writer for the Conversation says crowdfunding money for bicycle infrastructure helps reduce the risk of bikelash. Something tells me Los Angeles bike riders could fully fund the cost of every bike lane and road diet in the mobility plan, and it still wouldn’t satisfy the city’s angry drivers.

Bike Snob writer and self-described avid driver Eben Weiss says sometimes just driving a car is an act of violence, and wonders why drivers can’t see that they’re the worst. I wouldn’t go that far; a lot of good people drive cars. But it does seem to bring out the worst in people.

Uber says riding a bicycle without a helmet is dangerous. But hopes to have us all riding in jet packs in the near future.

Lyft has pulled its ebikes from San Francisco, DC and New York after reports of brake problems on their dockless bikeshare systems, replacing them with regular bikes for the time being.

Bicycling says your next custom-made frame could come out of an Airstream trailer.

She kinda gets it. A Tucson columnist says let’s keep each other alive on the streets, but admits to being distracted behind the wheel.

A San Antonio TX nonprofit paper — not that many papers make a profit these days — calls for a bike advocacy group in the city.

Six years after bicyclists were first allowed on Colorado’s Pikes Peak, the guy who runs the roadway says it’s been a pleasant surprise, and even the drivers have been courteous. Although I’d like to hear that last part from the guys on bikes, thank you.

The Boston Globe says ten years from now, bicyclists in Cambridge MA may take the city’s protected bike lane network for granted, after the city passed a first-in-the-nation ordinance requiring protected lanes in any new roadwork in the bike plan.

An upstate New York letter writer complains about the county tearing up his lawn to widen the roadway and install a “bike path to nowhere,” telling riders they can just use the rail trails; a commenter calls it the “worst anti-bicycle twaddle” he’s seen in some time.

A Virginia woman learns the hard way you can’t tow your kids in a bike trailer behind your 40 mph moped.

As promised, Atlanta bike riders bring traffic to a crawl by slow rolling during the morning commute. But how many of those drivers actually got to work or school after crawling in traffic, and decided that the people on bikes had a point? Probably somewhere south of zero.

Tiger Woods says his big comeback at the Masters golf tournament was like riding a new bicycle. But without all the angry drivers and bike lane-fighting NIMBYs and traffic safety deniers.

International

Road.cc offers a guide to tandems.

Apparently, the Royal Canadian Mounties have invented bicycle registration.

Country singer Keith Urban is one of us, using a two-hour bike ride around London to clear his head and discover Irish singer Foy Vance.

More proof that bicyclists face the same problems everywhere, as a Glasgow bike rider angrily accuses cops of being lazy and risking his safety by parking in a bike lane near the police headquarters.

Benedict Cumberbatch learned the hard way not to mess with an angry bicyclist, getting slapped in the face by a man Cumberbatch knocked off his bike with his Lamborghini SUV on the Isle of Wight last year — and just a year after he rescued a bike rider from a London mugging.

Surprisingly, after what may be our first-ever news report from the Isle of Wight, we have another, as a bike-riding letter writer suffering from a severe case of windshield bias says bike riders should be forced to use cycle tracks, both for their own safety and so they don’t interrupt the flow of vehicle traffic. And inconvenience people like him.

The Irish Times says rampant bike theft in Dublin is putting people off bicycling. Same could be said of any major city, including Los Angeles; people who have their bikes stolen often decide it’s just not worth it. Which is why fighting bike theft has to be a priority in getting drivers out of their cars.

A Dutch woman explains how she biked her way around the world for 18 months on the equivalent of just $6,500.

Horrible story from India, where a young woman on a motor scooter was killed when she passed too close to a shepherd who was riding his bicycle with a scythe on his shoulder, slicing her throat as she rode by.

An Aussie stockbroker talks bicycling — including the admonition to just have fun, on the good days and the bad.

A Canberra, Australia paper wants to know why bike riders keep dying on the area’s country roads; a driver recounts barely missing endurance cyclist Mike Hall just 12 miles and a few hours before he was killed by another motorist.

A determined Vietnamese boy hopped on a rusted bicycle with no brakes and rode 62 miles of a 200 mile journey to Hanoi to see his sick baby brother, using the soles of his sandals to brake the bike down going downhill; a kind stranger drove him to the next town and arranged transportation the rest of the way.

Road rage doesn’t pay in Singapore, as a bike rider who tangled with a truck driver is fined the equivalent of around $2,000.

Competitive Cycling

Belgian pro Philippe Gilbert won his fourth monument on the cobbles of Sunday’s Paris Roubaix, topping Germany’s Nils Politt in a cat-and-mouse battle at the end.

Belgium’s Wout Van Aert, one of the pre-race favorites, struggled to make it to the finish line after a crash and multiple mechanical problems.

Road.cc considers eleven ways the pros prepare for the rough roads of Paris Roubaix. Apparently, repeatedly smashing their testicles with a wooden mallet to get used to the cobbles isn’t one of them.

Dozens of mountain bikers are racing 400 miles from San Diego to Idyllwild to benefit the San Diego Mountain Bike Association.

Finally…

If you’re a convicted felon illegally carrying a gun and burglary tools on your bike, don’t leer into cars while wearing latex gloves. When you’re carrying meth and a hidden handgun while walking a freshly spray-painted bike, try to not to let the paint rub off on your hands.

And if someone punches you in the face, steals your speakers and rides off on your bike, he’s probably not really your friend.

Morning Links: LADOT & Ryu keep Rowena safe, Monterey bike news, and back when LA was a bike town

Chalk one up for the good guys.

After years of protests from traffic safety deniers and what turned out to be a relative handful of local residents, LADOT has decided to keep the highly successful road diet on Rowena Ave in place.

And surprisingly, Councilmember David Ryu, who many feared wanted to unceremoniously rip out the Rowena road diet — myself included — apparently saw the light, and went along with LADOT’s recommendation.

According to the Los Feliz Ledger, the results of a $90,000 traffic safety study demanded by opponents show the effectiveness of the half-mile Complete Streets project.

Among LADOT’s findings are that the road diet has reduced collisions, from an average of 12.4 per year in the five years prior to the road diet’s installation, to an average of 7.8 in the five years after. 

The city agency also found that mid-day traffic speeds went from 39 miles-per-hour both east and westbound pre-road diet to 36 miles-per-hour eastbound and remained at 39 miles-per-hour westbound post-road diet. 

Traffic volume on the street has remained consistent both before and after the road diet, according to the LADOT’s report.

Additionally, the department found, “Adjacent residential streets Waverly Drive and Angus Street … experienced no discernible increase or decrease in collisions after the implementation of the road reconfiguration.”

Meanwhile, an email forwarded to me from Scott Gamzon notes that the study calls for making the bike lanes on Rowena even safer.

It also includes a recommendation for protected bike lanes on Rowena: Enhanced Bikewav: Installation of the Rowena reconfiguration was intended to improve safety for all road users. Based on the growth in bicycle use along Rowena, upgrading the existing striped bike lane to accommodate a wider Class II buffered bike lane, or Class IV separated bikeway may provide additional safety to people bicycling. The street width can accommodate this facility without additional changes.


Adding: Implementing bike lanes was not a primary motivating factor for the road diet. Nonetheless, LADOT also reviewed bicycle counts along Rowena Avenue and found an increase in bicycle use during peak periods from a high of 14 to an average of 71 bike trips after the reconfiguration.

And Terence Heuston, aka LA Bike Dad, offered some good stats and insights on the subject.

It’s worth clicking on one of the tweets to read Heuston’s full Rowena thread. Because he lays out an effective roadmap to victory in the seemingly endless battles with traffic safety deniers that have cropped up throughout the LA area.

And allowed an angry, vocal minority to put a stop to too many desperately needed safety improvements.

But fortunately, not this one.

Thanks to Sean Meredith for the heads-up.

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In honor of the Sea Otter Classic, a Monterey County weekly took an in-depth look at bicycling in the area, with a series of articles in this week’s edition.

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‘Nuff said.

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Local

KABC-7 catches on to LA’s hit-and-run epidemic.

State

Newport Beach considers waving minimum parking requirements for Balboa Village, with one business owner saying that people should be riding bicycles on the island, anyway.

A new community park provides San Diego’s first free public parkour area and bike pump track.

A 42-year old salmon cyclist suffered serious injuries when he was struck by the driver of a commercial truck while riding in a Kearny Mesa bike lane Thursday morning. Which is just one more reminder to never ride against traffic if you can avoid it. It may seem safer to see the cars and trucks coming, but it actually increases your risk.

Sad news from Berkeley, where a man died suddenly, a month after he suffered a severely broken leg in a hit-and-run collision; however, the actual cause of death is yet to be determined.

Thanks to a Silicon Valley company an a boutique bikemaker, your next ebike could come with a 3D-printed, unibody carbon fiber frame.

National

A writer for Bicycling praises the health benefits of eating nuts. But fails to mention that eating too many is one of the best ways to get kidney stones, as I learned the hard way.

A Microsoft employee in Redmond WA credits riding his bike to work for saving a toddler’s life, after the 20-month old boy survived falling six stories through an open window, when he landed on the roof of the car the Microsoft worker had left behind.

Evidently, that fatal shooting of a bike rider in Las Vegas last month wasn’t a random act after all; police announced the arrest of a suspect, saying he’d had an altercation with the victim prior to the shooting.

A Denver bike shop is making waves in the industry by selling certified, pre-owned bicycles at reduced prices, while guaranteeing to buy them back at predetermined prices after 6, 12 or 18 months.

Am I the only one who sees a problem here? The owner of a Cleveland blue-collar bar fears the arrival of a bike path in front of his business because it will mean the loss of 12 to 15 parking spaces that people use to stop in and down a few drinks on their way home from work.

A New York councilmember says if you want a better bike network, and want to speed up the implementation of new bike lanes, take approvals from community boards out of the process.

Atlanta bicyclists plan to slow roll a major street during today’s morning rush hour to protest traffic danger and call for Complete Streets. As tempting as it is sometimes, we don’t win any friends by making people late to work, or keeping them from getting home at night.

Wednesday was Bike to Work Day in the Big Easy. LA’s version will take place next month, though the city has seen declining interest in recent years.

International

Curbed looks at how cities around the world are rewarding people who ditch their car commutes.

That’s more like it. Bogotá police are responding to a series of violent muggings of bike riders by assigning 170 officers to patrol the city’s bike lanes, along with 800 security cameras and a roving helicopter during the evening commute.

He gets it. A writer for a Canadian driving website says building more roads never was, still isn’t and never will be a solution to gridlock, because induced demand will just fill them again.

The Conversation says Canada’s best urban bike maps are made by volunteers with open source data. Something that’s just as true on the other side of the border.

Despite being annoyed at the “uncivilized” and “ridiculous” response, Hamilton, Ontario officials decide to back off on their ridiculously dangerous plan to allow parking in bike lanes. This is one case where a little uncivilized ridicule is entirely appropriate.

A new English survey shows that bicycling outdoors is on the decline, while cycling indoors is growing more popular, apparently because of the country’s “toxic road environment.”

Hundreds of members of an Irish bike club formed a hi-viz, spandex-clad color guard to honor a founding member who died suddenly while riding home with friends from a charity ride.

A Dublin paper has today’s candidate for the world’s worst headline — “No helmet, no chance if you come a cropper on your bike.” As if everyone who comes off a bike without one will die, and everyone who has one will be perfectly fine. Like the song says, it ain’t necessarily so.

A Kiwi columnist says it’s time for speeding bike riders to slow down.

An Australian advocacy group proposes paying people five dollars a day to bike to work. Which would probably be one of the most effective and least punitive ways to get people out of their cars.

Cycling Tips talks with the author of the Aussie study that shows bike lanes may be more dangerous than streets without them. However, before anyone starts demanding their removal, it’s important to consider that this study only examined how closely drivers pass riders in painted lanes, and not actual collision and injury rates. Other studies have shown that painted lanes improve safety by up to 50%.

Bike-hating former Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson says swapping his car for a bike during a year in Southeast Asia left him a broken man, but in far better shape. Sure, let’s go with that.

Competitive Cycling

Geraint Thomas and Michał Kwiatkowski were cleared to keep riding after a mass crash that took out much of the peloton on the Tour of the Basque Country; the jury is still out on Julian Alaphilippe,

Finally…

Like cocaine, Peloton bikes are “God’s way of saying you have too much money.” If it has e-assist pedals and four wheels, is it still a bike?

And if you’re going to take a food delivery man’s bike, make sure you can ride it.

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