Archive for Bicycle Safety

59-year old bike rider killed in South LA crash; driver fled in second car

Sad news from South LA, where a man in his 60s was killed in a crash with a van driver.

Although there’s some dispute as to what actually happened.

According to KTLA-5, the victim was riding west on 49th Street near Compton Ave around 5 pm when he allegedly fell in front of the van, and was run over by the driver.

The driver, described as a black woman in her 20s, initially stopped to render aid before fleeing the scene with two men in a white vehicle.

Witnesses struggled to free the victim from under the van; he died after being taken to a hospital.

He was identified as 59-year old Thomas Demetrius Adams, a resident of the Central-Alameda neighborhood.

However, in a story that’s not currently online, KNBC-4 reports the driver was exiting a driveway, and failed to see Adams before backing into him.

The station says the woman tried to help Adams at first, but fled the scene with two men who arrived in another vehicle.

Either way, it’s hit-and-run. And an innocent man is dead.

This is the third bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and first in LA County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Thomas Demetrius Adams and all his loved ones.

 

Santa Ana mountain bike rider collapsed and died in front of South Coast Global Medical Center

Even being in exactly the right place at the right time isn’t always enough.

The Orange County Register is reporting that a man, who has not been publicly identified, collapsed with riding his mountain bike on South Bristol Street in Santa Ana around 6:30 this morning.

He fell directly in front of the South Coast Global Medical Center, and was eventually taken inside where he was pronounced dead.

There’s no word on why he collapsed or the cause of death.

According to the paper, so many motorists stopped to help the victim that police initially thought he must have been hit by one of them.

Too often we only hear about the conflicts between people on bikes and in cars, whether verbal or physical, intentional or otherwise. As sad as this news is, it’s heartwarming to see that there are still people who care about others on our streets.

This is the second bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first in Orange County.

Unfortunately, issues medical issues like this can arise at any time, often with little or no warning. So let this be a reminder to see your doctor on a regular basis, especially if you’re older or have health issues, to ensure that you’re healthy enough to ride.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and his loved ones.

Morning Links: SoCal bike deaths drop, green bike lanes coming to Mar Vista, and cycling won’t make you limp

Sixty-two.

That’s the number of people who died riding their bikes in Southern California last year.

Which is an improvement in some ways, because it represents a significant drop from the 73 people killed in the seven-county area last year. And an even bigger drop from the 86 people killed in 2014.

But it’s still 62 too many.

LA Curbed examines last year’s deaths, including the 26 people who died in Los Angeles County last year, including my fears of what’s behind the decline.

And be forewarned before you venture into the comments there, or on Reddit.

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Westside Councilmember Mike Bonin forwards word that the protected bike lanes that were installed on Venice Blvd as part of the Mar Vista Great Streets project will be getting green paint to make them more obvious to some of the more oblivious drivers and bike riders.

As we’ve noted here before, these bike lanes were installed as a one-year pilot project, with adjustments made as needed when issues arise, or opportunities for improvements become evident.

This sounds like a little of both.

………

Relax, guys.

A new study from UC San Francisco says riding a bike does not cause erectile dysfunction or infertility.

In fact, the study showed that not only does cycling not affect men’s sexual or urinary health, but that men who rode over 25 miles a day actually had better erectile function.

So you can spend all the time you want in the saddle and still get it up have kids.

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Local

You can’t ride on the 10 Freeway in Santa Monica, but you may be able to ride in a park over it someday.

A West Hollywood study suggests a number of safety improvements that could reduce bicycle and pedestrian crashes on Fountain Ave by 25% to 55%. However, bike lanes don’t appear to be among the recommendations; the street currently has sharrows despite the heavy, often high-speed traffic.

 

State

The bicyclist who posted video of the massive homeless camp along the Santa Ana River Trail now wishes he’d been a little more sensitive.

Ebike maker Haibike is moving to Simi Valley after relocating to Denver just a year ago.

Santa Maria considers a makeover of its downtown to create a bicycle and pedestrian-friendly atmosphere. Although they may discover that a $300,000 grant doesn’t go very far.

Bike Bakersfield has a new executive director.

The mayor of Mountain View is one of us, riding his bike around town and taking his helmet with him into meetings.

An armored truck hit a tree in San Francisco after driving down a separated bike lane instead of the traffic lane.

It’s always polite to fist-bump the cop who manages to chase you down on your bike before busting you for possession.

 

National

Bicycling profiles Ben Serotta as he returns to framebuilding, and examines what fear does to your body when some jerk nearly runs you off the road.

HuffPo considers how bicyclists got screwed out of their measly $20 a month bike commuting benefit in the new GOP tax bill, while drivers got to keep a $255 monthly deduction.

The people who work behind the scenes keeping dockless bikeshare working are getting screwed by the outsourcing gig economy. Or at least the ones working for Ofo.

An Idaho self-help author turns his attention advising drivers on how to coexist with bicyclists, with surprisingly good results.

Talk about a bad business deal. A Montana man is busted after buying an $1,800 stolen bicycle for $600, then pawning it for $200 three days later.

A Minneapolis paper discovers the lack of women working in bike shops — which also leads to a lack of women shopping in them.

A New York advocacy group says congestion pricing is the only way to reach zero traffic fatalities in the city, by getting more cars off the street. Something that hasn’t even been discussed in Los Angeles, where drivers would probably riot if anyone actually tried to pry them out of their cars.

This is how it’s supposed to be done. A DC-area county will build protected bike lanes for bicyclists who won’t be able to use a popular bike path during construction for a light rail line.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a trailer from Florida’s Jack the Bike Man, who gives thousands of refurbished bikes to kids every Christmas.

 

International

If you build it, they will come. After Calgary built out a complete protected bike lane network in the downtown area, the percentage of women riders rose to 25%. Which is still far too low, but at least it’s headed in the right direction.

A Montreal writer pens an ode to orphan bikes, which are forced to spend the winter cold, alone and unloved.

A London art exhibit features miniature landscapes of bike routes the artist has traveled.

A woman in the UK writes about how she fell in love with riding a bike after getting on one for the first time in 40 years.

A Brit writer relates how he failed four basic safety lessons on his first day as an amateur bike rider. Which somehow implies the rest of us are getting paid for it.

British police are looking for a bike rider who pushed a 17-year old girl over as she was walking in a bike lane. Don’t do that. Ever. Period.

After an Aussie cyclist barely avoids getting sucked under a semi, she’s victimized again by abusive online comments.

The “menace” of joyriding Malaysian stunt bicyclists is spreading across the country, despite a crash last year that killed eight teenage riders, and another that killed two others last week.

 

Competitive Cycling

A new French book suggests that Lance was doping his bike as well as his blood.

USA Today looks at the debate over testosterone testing of transgender women, two of whom are hoping to make the US Olympic cycling team, on opposite sides of the debate.

Belgian cyclist Tim Wellens says inhaler use is wrong, despite pulling out of last year’s Tour de France with breathing problems.

Sad news from the UK, where a man who had been battling depression hung himself four days after he failed to finish a 24-hour bike race.

 

Finally…

How to pedal without ever leaving home or having to deal with other humans. Seriously, how big a bike pump will it take to inflate that thing?

And this is why you stop traffic before putting up the finish gate.

Bike rider killed in Muscoy hit-and-run; first SoCal bicycling death of 2018

That didn’t take long.

The first Southern California bicycling fatality of 2018 came just an hour into the new year.

As did the first fatal hit-and-run.

According to the San Bernardino County Coroner’s office, a bike rider was struck by a driver around 1:05 am on the 3600 block of N. Cajon Blvd in Muscoy.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was pronounced dead at the scene less than 20 minutes later.

The driver fled the scene, apparently without stopping. No information is available on the suspect or the suspect vehicle at this time.

There’s also no information on how the collision occurred.

A street view shows a two-lane highway with a center turn lane, and no paved shoulder on either side.

This is the first Southern California bicycling fatality of 2018, and the first in San Bernardino County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and his or her loved ones.

 

 

Woodland Hills bike rider killed in Lake Balboa crash; 2nd rider injured

This is the news no one wanted during the holiday season.

According to the LA Daily News, 48-year old Woodland Hills resident Matthew Dale Barnett was killed as he was riding his bike with another rider in the Lake Balboa area Wednesday evening.

Barnett and the other victim, who was not publicly identified, were riding north on the 7100 block of Hayvenhurst Ave, south of Sherman Way, when they both were struck from behind by the driver of an SUV around 6:30 pm.

Barnett was pronounced dead at the scene; the other rider was hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries.

The driver, who was not even mentioned in the Daily News story, remained at the scene. Police were unsure if drugs or alcohol were involved, and no word on whether the driver may have been distracted.

No arrest was made at the scene.

A street view shows Hayvenhurst has two lanes in each direction with a center turn lane, and parking on either side. The street would have likely been busy at that hour.

Anyone with information is urged to contact LAPD Detective Bill Bustos at 818/644-8021.

This is the 62nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 28th in Los Angeles County. Barnett’s death is the ninth in the City of LA since the first of the year.

And hopefully, the last.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Matthew Barnett and loved ones.

Bicyclist killed in Thermal crash when driver ran stop sign

A 68-year old man riding a road bike is dead because a driver couldn’t be bothered to observe a stop sign.

According to the Desert Sun, 68-year old Bellingham, Washington resident Jack Roger Laird was killed when he was struck by a driver at 12:06 pm yesterday, at the intersection of Fillmore Street and Avenue 62 in Thermal.

The driver, a woman in her mid-20s, reportedly blew through a stop sign and plowed into Laird’s bike; she stayed at the scene and was cooperating with police.

Laird died at the scene.

A street view shows a pair of two-lane roadways converging in the middle of the desert, controlled by stop signs in every direction. A CHP spokesperson says that drivers frequently ignore the stop signs.

There is a 55 mph speed limit on 62nd, and no reason to believe drivers go any slower on Fillmore.

Or that slowly, for that matter.

There’s something seriously wrong when someone can’t visit this state without going back home in a box. Or ride a bike in the middle of nowhere without worrying about drivers to whom a stop sign apparently means nothing.

This is the 61st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eighth in Riverside County this year. Laird is the 2nd bike rider to die in Thermal in the last four years.

That compares with 70 in SoCal this time last year, and ten in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jack Roger Laird and all his family and loved ones.

 

Man killed riding bike in Murrieta collision Sunday evening

A man has died following a rear-end collision while riding his bike in Murrieta Sunday evening.

The Press-Enterprise reports that the victim, later identified as 43-year old Murrieta resident Khuda Dad, was struck by the driver of a van mid-block on Washington Ave between Lemon Street and Davenport Way at 5:57 pm.

Dad was riding north on Washington when he was rear-ended by the van. He was taken to a local hospital where he died the following day.

The driver remained at the scene. Police are still investigating what caused the crash, but say drugs or alcohol don’t appear to have been a factor.

A street view shows one northbound lane on Washington with no shoulder or sidewalk, along with a center turn lane and two southbound lanes. The street appears to have a 40 mph speed limit.

Anyone with information is urged to call to Traffic Investigator Jennifer Metoyer at 951/461-6375.

This is the 60th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Khuda Dad and all his loved ones.

Driver uses car as weapon to murder San Bernardino bike rider in intentional hit-and-run

Once again, a bike rider has been killed in a San Bernardino crash.

But this time, it was not an accident — in any sense of the word.

According to a press release from the San Bernardino Police Department, 52-year old San Bernardino resident Elroy Preston was riding on the 1400 block of E. Date Street around 6:27 pm Sunday when he was struck by a driver, who fled the scene.

Preston was taken to a local hospital, where he died later that night.

Witnesses reported he was struck by a black Dodge Magnum driven by 34-year old Dominic Deshaun Simmons of Fontana; the two men had been at the same home just before the crash.

Police spotted a vehicle matching the description at a gas station in Rialto, and arrested Simmons on suspicion of murder. He is currently being held without bail.

Simmons has an extensive criminal record, as well as several outstanding warrants for failing to appear for hearings on various charges.

Preston also had a record, though no details are available; no word on what the relationship was between the two men, if any.

Anyone with information is urged to call Detective Oldendorf at 909/384-5619 or Sgt. Kokesh at 909/384-5613.

This is the 59th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 13th in San Bernardino County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Elroy Preston and all his loved ones.

Man riding motorized bicycle killed in San Bernardino collision; 12th bike death in county this year

A San Bernardino man has been killed in a crash while riding his bike.

According to the Fontana Herald News, 24-year old Michael Brian Brownstein died after he was struck by a vehicle where North E Street turns into Kendall Drive in San Bernardino around 5:49 pm on Thursday. 

He was taken to a local hospital, then transferred to Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 7:50 pm.

The San Bernardino Sun fills in some of the missing details, reporting that Brownstein was riding north on E Street when he was struck from behind by a vehicle driven by a 70-year old woman, who remained at the scene.

She was not suspected of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

The Sun also reports that Brownstein was riding a motorized bicycle, though it doesn’t clarify whether he was on an ebike or a gas powered bike.

A street view shows an undivided roadway with two lanes in each direction, with no shoulder or parking lane, forcing bicyclists to ride in the traffic lane.

This is the 58th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 12th in San Bernardino County. That compares with seven in the county for all of last year.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Michael Brian Brownstein and all his loved ones.

Morning Links: Stumbling on a Compton bike crash, bike events, and fixing a bike path with duct tape

Mike Wilkinson forwards a reminder to always ride safely.

About 10:30 Thursday morning my wife saw the aftermath of a crash involving a bicyclist near Alameda and Alondra in Compton. Such a scene would be hard for most people to stomach, but it was especially tough for her, because we are both avid riders.

The bike was broken in half, which may indicate the force of the collision, but what really got to my wife was the rider’s screams as the first responders tried to help him. The whole scene is going to haunt her for a while.

Despite her shock, she felt it was important to note that most riders she sees in this area ride terribly. They run stop lights, ride on the wrong side of the road, cross from one side to the other in the middle of the block and worse. That makes it hard for even careful drivers like her to avoid collisions. It’s a reminder that following the rules of the road at least means that you are more likely to be where drivers expect you to be.

Be careful out there!

It’s important to note that there is nothing to suggest that the victim in this crash broke the law or rode recklessly in any way.

But it’s valid to say that our safety as bicyclists depends on riding in such a way that drivers know what to expect. Which means riding with traffic, observing traffic signals, and signaling turns. Even if they don’t.

In other words, ride like your life depends on it.

Because it does.

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This weekend marks the World Day of Remembrance to honor the victims of traffic violence.

Finish the Ride is marking the occasion with a memorial ride in honor of Jeff Knopp this Saturday; Knopp was killed while riding on Foothill Blvd in Sunland last November. Meanwhile, Streetsblog talks with Finish the Ride and S.A.F.E. founder Damian Kevitt.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition, SoCal Families for Safe Streets, Day One, Streets are For Everyone, and Los Angeles Walks will hold a late afternoon ceremony at Pasadena city hall on Sunday.

In other events,

LACBC is hosting a ride marshal orientation on Saturday.

Also on Saturday, Walk ‘n Rollers is kicking off their Fall Fundraising campaign with their first CycleGiving ride in Culver City.

Bike SGV is leading an SGV Greenways bike train ride this Sunday.

Helen’s Cycles is hosting a number of rides over the next three days.

Los Angeles Bike Rebels is (are?) hosting a solo art show by Carolin Keweer on the 25th.

And CicLAvia returns to Wilshire Blvd on December 10th.

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It’s often said that if you can’t fix it with duct tape, it ain’t broken.

Which is amply demonstrated by this video, where people in the Dutch city of Nijmegen fixed a dangerous intersection on a bike path with a simple application of the aforementioned adhesive.

Thanks to David Wolfberg for the heads-up.

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An Irish pundit loses it on a live TV show, accusing bike riders of being actual brown shirt-wearing Nazis, and giving the Nazi salute to drive the point home.

Unfortunately, most of the story is hidden behind a paywall. However, British bike scribe Carlton Reid comes through with the full stomach-turning story.

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Local

A Mar Vista restaurant owner says the road diet implemented as part of the Venice Blvd Great Streets project put him out of business. If reducing a six lane street down to four lanes, with no loss of parking, is enough to kill your business, your problems go a lot deeper than that.

Speaking of Mar Vista, a dermatologist and Mar Vista Community Council member says Vision Zero is a great idea, but the Venice Blvd road diet was rammed down their throats and won’t save a single life. Because everyone knows that dermatologists are experts in traffic safety, unlike the people who actually get paid to do it. Never mind that it was the result of a two-year, community-driven process, and wasn’t rammed up or down any part of anyone’s anatomy. 

Emmy-winning Canadian actress Tatiana Maslany is one of us; you have to respect someone who rides her bike to an interview with the LA Times. Colin Farrell’s kid is now one of us, too.

Maybe things will get a little safer in Pasadena, which received $112,000 grant from the state to improve bicycle safety. And the Santa Monica police received a $300,000 traffic safety grant of their own.

 

State

One thousand bikes were found in a hand-built dirt bunker after a homeless camp was evicted from the Santa Ana River. If you had a bike stolen anywhere in the Fountain Valley area, now would be a good time to check in with the OC Sheriff’s Department.

A handful of Thousand Oaks residents object to a proposed road diet, while the majority who attended a meeting apparently didn’t have an opinion.

Amgen does more than just sponsor a bike race. They’re also helping to give new bikes to kids in the Conejo Valley.

A Santa Barbara woman says yes, you can go grocery shopping by bike. Although riding to class at the local university appears to have its issues. Note: As Andy S points out below, the shopping piece is a rerun of an article that appeared earlier this year.

Bakersfield received a $30,000 grant from the state for bicycle and pedestrian safety education programs, as well as distributing bike helmets.

Caltrans held a public workshop to discuss their nine-county Bay Area bike plan.

 

National

Trek is getting sued for trademark infringement, accused of stealing the name of the late plus-sized comedian Chris Farley for its popular Farley fat bike. And no, I don’t even want to consider that implication.

Now that you’ve mastered all the other bike skills, learn how to do an upside down flip over an open loop.

Bicycling explains how to survive your next attack by a wild boar or wildebeest. Or an angry dog.

The Aspen CO sheriff has recovered the stolen bike Lance Armstrong gave him, after it was found chained to a tree. Maybe now he’ll have enough sense to lock his bike up like everyone else.

It takes a real schmuck to steal a ghost bike; fortunately, it was recovered at a Kansas scrap yard.

Can he give it back? A 19-year old Michigan man rode his bike to work every day, regardless of the weather, so his coworkers pitched in to buy him a car for his birthday.

New York officials knew the bike path where eight people were killed recently was vulnerable to a terrorist attack, but did nothing to prevent it. Just like LA officials know the risk of a similar attack on Hollywood Blvd, but haven’t done anything about it.

WaPo invites six triathletes to race DC’s bikeshare bikes.

A Virginia Navy vet plans to ride a stationary bike until he’s raised enough money to buy 100 bikes and helmets for local kids.

 

International

Rouleur takes a look at the concept collaborations between bike and auto makers.

A Toronto cyclist says bike lanes aren’t for experienced riders like him; they’re for people who might not otherwise get on a bike.

I want to be like her. An 11-year old girl raised the equivalent of nearly $8,000 for a mental health charity by riding the length of the UK, inspired by a cousin with anorexia.

A bike-riding British purse snatcher is behind bars after grabbing nine purses from elderly women as he rode by, including one theft caught on security cam.

Brit cyclists say software developers and owners of autonomous cars should be held criminally responsible for any crashes.

After a 79-year old English rider was pushed off his bike by a group of teenagers, he refused to press charges because he doesn’t want them to have a criminal record.

A grieving Irish woman says “selfish drivers are oblivious to the huge devastation they could cause,” after losing her entire family in a crash with a suicidal cab driver.

Why bother with water bottles when you can strap a couple half liters of Spanish wine to your bike?

An Indian woman is riding solo across the country to prove that the nation’s roads are safe for women.

Life is cheap in Australia, where the negligent death of a bike-riding doctor isn’t worth a single day in jail.

One of China’s leading bikeshare companies is on the verge of going belly up; Quartz says China’s bikeshare startups will have to merge or die.

 

Competitive Cycling

Now that the Fabian Cancellara motor doping controversy has died down a little, Road.cc reviews Phil Gaimon’s new book Draft Animals.

A British Parliament member says Bradley Wiggins and British Cycling weren’t exonerated by the end of the recent doping investigation.

 

Finally…

Maybe cut back on the meth a bit if you want to outrun a 74-year old man on his stolen bike. Why fly the coop — literally — when you can ride a bike?

And if you’re dismantling a pair of bikes in an alley, while in possession of burglary tools — and already on probation for grand theft — you might want to have an explanation ready in case the cops show up.

Just saying.

 

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