Morning Links: Dangerous driver — and pedestrian — tricks, and willfully indignorant* bike-hating writers

The war on bikes goes on.

A Macon GA pedestrian was convicted of misdemeanor assault for body-checking an Air Force chaplain who was riding his bike on a base fitness trail, insisting “the trail is not for bicycles.”

A North Carolina driver faces a second degree murder charge for — allegedly — intentionally running down a bike rider, for the apparent crime of saying something to a woman at a nearby home.

A British Columbia hit-and-run driver may have intentionally targeted a 14-year old competitive cyclist; a witness saw the truck veer into a bike lane to hit her, while reports circulated about a similar truck involved in a previous road rage incident.

Meanwhile, a Toronto writer asks if driving is a privilege, why is it so hard to revoke — and why shouldn’t dangerous drivers be priced off the road?

Or as Tom Vanderbilt put it, a driver’s license is too easy to get, and too hard to lose.

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Then there are the writers who just don’t get it. And seem damn proud of it.

A Davis columnist doesn’t seem to like the idea of an Idaho Stop Law, because, in his observations, virtually no one on a bike stops for a stop sign anyway, while every single driver comes to a full and complete stop. No, really, you can stop laughing now, that’s what he said.

An Atlanta columnist describes a road diet as “New Urbanism-speak for choking off a road” in hopes that drivers will become so frustrated they’ll go somewhere else.

On the other hand, an Australian columnist gets it, saying licensing bicyclists isn’t the answer, and that only a change in the attitude of all road users will prevent future tragedies.

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Fallen pro cyclist Michele Scarponi will be buried today in his full team kit; even his parrot is in mourning.

A French pro was the victim of a vicious attack with a baseball bat and a box cutter while on a training ride with two other cyclists.

Former British cyclist Jonathan Tiernan-Locke lost his license for 41 months after being convicted of driving at over twice the legal alcohol limit. This is why people continue to die on the streets, when even a second drunk driving offense results in nothing more than a slap on the wrist.

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Local

Vision Zero will host four open houses in Southeast and South LA in the coming weeks, with the first one this Thursday. And will roll out a series of events throughout the LA area, starting this week on Hoover Street.

The Better Bikeshare Partnership looks at the Team LACBC Diversity program to encourage more people to take part in the annual Climate Ride, beyond the usual white male suspects.

Speaking of the LACBC, they’ll be holding a roadside bike repair workshop tomorrow evening in conjunction with DTLA’s Just Ride LA bike shop.

 

State

Now that Governor Brown and his wife got new bicycles for Christmas, maybe he’ll be a little more concerned about bicycle safety and providing safe places to ride.

A San Diego man recounts his “amazing” four-day ride along the coast highway from Ocean Beach to Santa Barbara with a friend.

A San Jose woman wants bike riders to pay to fix potholes in the roads, even though bikes don’t cause them. Cyclelicious takes the opportunity to remind us of the Fourth Power Rule, concluding that a Prius causes 38,000 times more road damage to the road than a bicycle.

 

National

People for Bikes compares bicycling to other types of exercise to see how it stacks up; shockingly, riding a bike comes out on top almost every time.

Portland is developing an adaptive bikeshare program to address complaints that the city’s Nike-sponsored systems isn’t accessible to people with disabilities.

Austin TX is doubling the size of their free bikeshare system.

Caught on video: A Skokie IL cop pulls over a driver for tailgating a bike rider, telling them both “I want you to know that I care.” Although it’s kind of scary that the rider didn’t know he was being followed that closely.

A Minnesota TV station profiles a facemask wearing, bike-riding Robocop who records and challenges dangerous drivers.

Drag racer Courtney Force and IndyCar driver Graham Rahal are two of us, as they go fat bike riding in Indianapolis.

Caught on video too: Tennessee firefighters rescue a teenager who tried to ride his bicycle through 50-degree floodwaters.

Life is sickeningly cheap in Florida, where killing a fourth grader riding his bike on the sidewalk is worth nothing more than a $1,000 fine and a one-year license suspension.

 

International

Caught on video three: A bike-raging Toronto cyclist smashes the side mirror of an SUV, accusing the driver of laughing after nearly hitting him; a local advocacy group rightly condemns vigilantism while noting that something clearly led up to the incident.

Horrific story from London, where police are looking for a gang of masked thugs who hacked a teenage bike rider to death for no apparent reason, after harassing people earlier in the evening.

An unmarked bike cop will be riding the streets of Edinburgh to catch and educate drivers who don’t pass safely. Which is really all it takes to enforce the three-foot passing law, and yet, almost no police agencies in the US bother to do it. Including here in Los Angeles.

Forbes says the Glasgow study showing bike commuting can lower your risk of death by all causes 41% is an exceptionally well-controlled study, adding to its credibility. Unlike, say, the one that says you could suffer dementia and have a stroke if you drink diet soda.

A new Dutch system uses bunnies and turtles to tell you whether you need to speed up or slow down to make the next green light. And a cow to say just give up, already.

A bikeshare company is picking up the tab for Beirut’s first prototype bike lane, which will be extended throughout the city if all goes well.

The battle to reclaim Mosul from ISIS rebels has resulted in a unique bicycle culture, as cars and motorcycles are banned from moving in the west side of the city, and bikes are more practical in the rest.

Remembering when bikes went to war a century ago, as members of the Kiwi and Aussie Anzac Cyclist Brigade found themselves trapped in the trenches of WWI.

Nothing like watching a seeming embarrassed kangaroo hide its crotch after just missing an Aussie cyclist.

 

Finally…

No, seriously. If you’re riding your bike at 2:40 am carrying hash, crack and coke, put a damn light on it and stay off the sidewalk. If you’re going to use your bicycle as a burglary getaway vehicle, again, put a damn light on it, already.

And if you feel the need to salute the cyclist who just beat you in a sprint to the finish, try to use more than one finger.

Or at least hide it from the camera.

 

*A mashup of indignant and ignorant, a truly lovely combination

 

Morning Links: Drunk cyclists and pedestrians, bike lanes benefit public health, and support bikes in Hollywood

More victim blaming from the governors.

A new report from the Governors Highway Safety Association says one-third of pedestrians killed in 2014 traffic collisions, and 20% of bike riders, were legally drunk at the time of the crash.

Which, like most of their reports, sounds damning but lacks any real context.

Like whether the victims’ intoxicated state had anything whatsoever to do with the crashes that killed them.

The report implies pedestrians stumbling drunk into the path of oncoming motor vehicles, or weaving bike riders blowing red lights to meet their demise.

Yet it’s just as likely that a drunk pedestrian could have been hit while walking legally in a crosswalk, or that a bike rider may have been rear-ended while riding in a bike lane, despite having a couple beers.

As LAPD officers have repeatedly drilled into my head, intoxication is never the proximate cause of a collision. A driver may run a red light or veer onto the wrong side of the road because she’s drunk, but the cause of the crash is the traffic violation, not the DUI, which is considered a separate offense.

And never mind that a drunken bike rider or pedestrian is a danger to him or herself, while drunk drivers pose a danger to everyone around them.

So yes, the public should be made aware that walking or riding a bike after drinking can put you at serious risk. And taking transit or ordering a Lyft may be a better idea if you’ve had too much.

But seriously, everyone will be better off if you do anything except get behind the wheel.

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Another new study shows building bike lanes compares extremely well to other interventions designed to protect health, resulting in significant health cost savings and benefits to society at minimal expense.

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The LACBC is asking you to turn out next Tuesday to support bike lanes in Hollywood, which currently has none.

The Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council Transportation Committee will be discussing transportation issues including cycling. A public show of support for bike infrastructure is needed so that the committee will prioritize bike safety issues. In particular it would be helpful if cyclists were able to speak about The Hollywood Boulevard commercial district/corridor, Vine Street, Cahuenga Blvd, and/or Highland Avenue as they are all heavily trafficked and precarious for daily cyclists.

When: 6 pm Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Where: Hollywood Methodist Church located at 6817 Franklin Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90028

Parking: Plenty at the church itself

Closest Metro Stop: Hollywood/Highland

Please RSVP at if you plan to attend.

As someone who lives and rides in the area, I can attest to the need for major changes, since there’s currently no safe way in or out of Hollywood in any direction.

Let alone that we’ll be throwing tourists to the wolves once Metro’s bikeshare comes here in the next few years.

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Mark Cavendish’s plans to catch the Cannibal’s record for Tour de France stage wins suffers a setback as he’s sidelined with infectious mononucleosis.

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Local

The Daily News says any public sign of friction on the LA City Council is a good thing, such as CD13 Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell’s endorsement of challenger Joe Bray-Ali in CD1 over incumbent Gil Cedillo.

Streetsblog’s Sahra Sulaiman talks about the LACBC’s Tamika Butler talking about bikes, equity, and tokenization on the Bike Nerds Podcast.

An Alhambra man was critically injured when he was hit by a car while walking his bicycle across the street; for a change, the driver stayed at the scene.

The 61-year old self-proclaimed UniGeezer spends six days a week mountain unicycling along off-road trails in Agoura Hills, Simi Valley and Santa Barbara.

 

State

Oceanside puts a planned crosswalk on hold as the city questions plans to install a road diet that would protect the lives of kids walking and biking to school.

The second phase of San Diego’s Torrey Pines Corridor project will begin this fall, including buffered bike lanes on both sides.

Professional BMX riders take an anti-bullying message to a Rancho Bernardo high school.

The Big Bear Grizzly says it’s time to ride bikes in Big Bear. I assume that’s the local newspaper, rather than, you know, an actual bear.

A San Francisco bike shop will take your old car in trade for a new ebike. Throw in a sidecar for the Corgi, and I’m in.

 

National

The new Copenhagen Wheel, which promises to turn any bicycle into an ebike, is finally available for purchase. With starting price of $1499, it costs more than most bikes it might be used on.

Denver paramedics are training to ride their bikes to the rescue. Meanwhile, a coalition of bike and safety groups is calling on the city to dedicate $40 million a year for sidewalks, bikeways and access to transit.

Bryan Dotson forwards word that BikeHouston, which just helped guide approval of the city’s ambitious new bike plan, is looking for a new advocacy director. On the plus side, you’ll get to help reshape one of the country’s most notoriously auto-centric cities. On the other hand, you’ll have to live in Texas.

Caught on video: An Ohio driver appears to target one of three kids riding their bikes, running over his bicycle and up onto a lawn as the victim jumps out of the way.

A Massachusetts town votes to remove two whole parking spaces to sort of make way for a bike lane, because removing the four spaces that were actually needed was just too much to ask.

The drunken hit-and-run Baltimore bishop who left a bike rider to die in the street is now eligible for parole, despite serving just 18 months of her seven-year sentence, because Maryland doesn’t consider vehicular manslaughter a violent offense. I’m sure her victim would beg to differ.

A Georgia driver faces multiple felony charges, including aggravated assault and hit-and-run, for turning around and intentionally clipping a cyclist after honking and yelling at the group of riders as he passed moments earlier.

 

International

Caught on video too: The BBC’s Jeremy Vine is once again the victim of a near miss as he rides his bike through the streets of London.

London bike commuters want more showers. And someplace to dry their sweaty clothes.

Dublin’s lord mayor says he doesn’t know anyone who takes bags of shopping home on their bicycles. Maybe he needs to expand his circle of acquaintances since countless people do just that every day.

Irish police sergeants and inspectors say the country’s streets are too dangerous, so they call for making helmets and hi-viz mandatory for bike riders instead of making the streets safer. At least wiser heads prevailed on a plan to force pedestrians to wear fluorescent clothing.

Not even Copenhagen gets bike infrastructure right all the time.

Shanghai tries to halt China’s bike boom, banning bicycles — ridden or parked — from certain downtown districts, as well as a number of roads without bike lanes.

 

Finally…

Seriously, if you’re going to steal a bicycle, inside a police station is probably not the best place to start. Or at least wait until the rider gets off.

And if you’re going to jump your bike across a pond, try stay on until you hit the ramp, anyway.

 

Morning Links: Joe Bray-Ali still alive in CD1 council race, and frontline reports from the war on bikes

Don’t give up yet.

Despite the election night gloating of incumbent Councilmember Gil Cedillo, the race in CD1 is not over yet. In fact, it may just be getting started.

According to the latest count of outstanding absentee and provisional ballots from the County Clerk’s office, Cedillo’s vote total has dipped below the 50% required to avoid a runoff.

Which means that if the totals stand as they are now, challenger Joe Bray-Ali will face Cedillo in the May 16th general election.

Of course, things could still change. There are more ballots to count, with the next update due on Friday.

And even if Bray-Ali does qualify for a runoff, it will be an uphill battle against the entrenched city hall establishment and massive piles of special interest money that inevitably flow in to support any LA incumbent.

But he has a chance. And that means, so do we.

Thanks to Matt Ruscigno and Todd Munson for their help.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

A San Francisco driver punched a bike rider in the eye, knocking her off her bike and into traffic, for the crime of complaining that he was illegally stopped in a bike lane — even though there was nothing to his right and he could have easily pulled over to the curb.

A Ross CA man is charged with misdemeanor reckless driving after allegedly attempting to run a bike rider off the road, and threatening to come back with a shotgun and blow his head off. So evidently, the driver’s own words aren’t enough to prove he was threatening the rider.

A Chicago bicyclist was attacked by a road raging driver who threw his bike into the curb, damaging both wheels.

Caught on video: After a London driver barely misses a cyclist in a way too close pass, the rider has it out with the driver, who tries to door him, then barely misses with a second punishment pass.

A British bike rider was lucky to escape with superficial injuries when someone strung a wire at neck level across a promenade; fortunately, the police are investigating it as the assault that it is, rather than a prank.

A New Zealand bike trail was booby trapped with logs and branches that could have knocked a rider off his bike or impaled someone.

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A sports site talks with former pro cyclist Rebecca Rush, as a new movie documents her 1,200-mile journey along Ho Chi Minh Trail to find where her father’s plane crashed in the Vietnam war, when she was just three years old.

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Local

CiclaValley suggests the city may have changed it’s mind about installing paid diagonal parking on the road leading up to the Griffith Park Observatory. Meanwhile, plans were announced to close the popular hiking trailhead on Beachwood Canyon leading to the Hollywood sign, following years of incessant lobbying from Beachwood residents — essentially converting a public park into the private property of a few privileged homeowners.

The Culver City Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee will discuss several options for the city’s proposed bikeshare system at its meeting tomorrow night; the plan could serve adjacent areas such as Palms and Playa Vista, as well as Culver City.

 

State

A Carlsbad cyclist’s legacy lives on five years after he died of ALS; the annual Bike4Mike Coastal Ride he founded has raised over $1 million to fight the disease, and hopes to bring in another $100,000 this Sunday.

The San Diego Association of Governments is offering a number of $1,500 grants to encourage kids to walk or bike to school. So why not just use one of the grants to offer 150 kids ten bucks if they get out of Mom’s, or the nanny’s, SUV and walk or bike it to class instead?

A Palm Springs bicyclist suffered major injuries in a crash that involved two motor vehicles.

The Executive Director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition writes to demand protected bike lanes on upper Market Street, saying a decision to delay implementing them is incompatible with Vision Zero.

The Mountain Bike Hall of Fame in Marin is now accepting nominations for this year’s class.

 

National

Streetsblog asks when the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, the overly conservative national guide to traffic signal, signs and pavement markings, will finally catch up to the 21st Century; they just got around to approving Bike Lane Ends signs. Even though American bike lanes have been ending — without warning in most cases — for 50 years.

A new study shows millions of people could switch from driving to autonomous ride-sharing services, presumably opening up curbside parking for bike lanes, while doing nothing about traffic congestion. Which means drivers will likely rise up and demand those curbside lanes be used for vehicular traffic, instead.

The American Society of Civil Engineers gives America’s roads a D grade, saying they are “often crowded, frequently in poor condition, chronically underfunded, and are becoming more dangerous.”

Justice denied, as a Michigan man died after pleading guilty in the death of a bicyclist last year, but before he could be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison.

A man is under arrest for breaking the window of a Pittsburgh bike shop and making off with a $4,000 mountain bike; he also threatened to shoot one of the arresting officers in the head and kill his family when he gets out of jail. Hopefully, that will be a very long time off.

A New York newsman takes his fat tire bike out for a blizzard bike tour in the middle of yesterday’s storm.

 

International

No, you can’t throw your bike backwards. At least not while you’re on it.

Vancouver residents are upset that a row of cherry trees along a seawall were removed to make room for a bike lane, although the city promises to plant new, and healthier, trees in their place.

Not all guerilla DIY efforts are beneficial to bike riders; an English town promises to remove the No Cycling signs someone had illegally placed along a pathway, where bicycling is in fact allowed.

A British court rules a killer motorist’s driving ban should have started the day he was sentenced. Which means he would have been prohibited from driving while he was in prison, where cars are seldom allowed, anyway.

A Brit podcast discusses a forthcoming BBC documentary on the history of Raleigh bicycles. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Cycling Industry News has a list of bike jobs in the UK, if you’re ready to give up on the US.

Even in Copenhagen, bikeshare can be a tough sell, as the company behind the city’s e-bikeshare system goes belly up.

Frightening story from Berlin, where a man riding a bicycle has sprayed six women in the face with what appears to be battery acid.

An Aussie radio station discusses what parents can do to make riding to school safer for their kids.

An Australian grandfather explains what it was like to be the victim of an apparently random shooing as he rode his bike last month.

 

Finally…

Just what every rider needs — a $350 Levi/Google smart jacket. Evidently, Dale Earnhardt Jr. needs taller socks.

And if you attend Cedarville University, it’s only natural you’d build a wooden ebike.

 

Morning Links: It’s the Wild West on our streets, a successful DIY plunger bike lane, and Marathon Crash returns

Just a quick note before we get started.

According to researchers from the University of Colorado, there is a 17% spike in traffic collisions the Monday after the spring Daylight Savings time change.

So use extra caution on the roads today, whether you’re walking, riding or driving. And as always, ride and drive defensively.

Because you can’t control what other people do. But you can be prepared to react in a safe and controlled manner, no matter what they do.

Besides, it’s a lot safer than playing rugby.

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A Nebraska researcher concludes it’s like the Wild West on our streets, as the behavior of both bicyclists and motorists are governed by unspoken rules of behavior that go beyond traffic laws. But even when riders break the law, in most cases they do it to avoid being injured or killed by a driver.

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That DIY lane barrier made up of toilet plungers in Wichita KS was a success, as the city was shamed into installing a post-protected bike lane by the guerrilla installation.

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This Sunday is your chance to bike 26 miles of empty LA streets, when the legendary early morning Marathon Crash ride returns for another year. Here’s what the LA Weekly had to say about it a few years back.

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This is why people continue to die on our streets.

An Oregon driver says it’s inevitable that he’ll drive drunk again after being sentenced to one lousy year in jail for his ninth — yes, ninth — DUI.

A Colorado woman will face anywhere from four to twelve years in jail after pleading guilty to the drunken hit-and-run death of a bicyclist; she was on probation for a previous drunk driving conviction at the time of the crash, and had two other alcohol-related arrests.

And the hit-and-run driver who killed an Irish bike rider had 49 prior convictions, and was on a temporary release from jail despite violating bail 18 times.

They all should be permanently banned from driving, as well as owning, renting or borrowing a motor vehicle.

Or sitting behind the wheel and saying “vroom, vroom,” for that matter.

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Here’s a spoiler-free report on the conclusion of the seven day Paris – Nice race: Alberto Contado made a hell of a finish, even if the next-to-last stage was too hard for a March race.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 78-year old Englishman hopes to raise the equivalent of $73,000 by riding the full route of this year’s Giro d’Italia.

“Is that a bicycle pump in your pocket or are you just pleased to see me?” Team Sky used Viagra to get a jump on the competition.

Evidently, motor doping is nothing new. Except the motors used to be on trains.

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Local

Get your fresh bagels by bike in Silver Lake and Echo Park.

A writer for UCLA’s Daily Bruin calls on newly re-elected CD5 Councilmember Paul Koretz to be more dynamic in his final term in office. Yeah, that will happen.

Bike thefts are up on the Cal State Northridge campus.

West Hollywood’s WeHo Pedals bikeshare program will hold pop-up Hub Days at bikeshare locations around the city to explain how the program works.

Culver City is looking at plans for a bikeshare system.

Coldplay’s Chris Martin is one of us, riding in Malibu with his son.

Bellflower has approved plans for the Bellflower-Paramount Bike Trail, which will eventually connect the LA River and San Gabriel River bike paths.

 

State

Camp Pendleton will host their Hell Fire Fat Tire mountain bike race on March 18; the race is open to both military personnel and civilians. I wonder if any of the people who had their bikes confiscated by the Marines at Miramar will risk competing on the other Marine base to the north.

Palm Springs residents are calling for a road diet on Golf Club Drive to slow speeding drivers, even though city officials say it’s not a problem.

Los Gatos approves a new bike and pedestrian plan intended to create a low-stress bicycle and pedestrian network.

San Jose’s Mr. Roadshow considers the debate over AB 1103, California’s proposed Idaho Stop Law. Speaking of which, Calbike wants your signature in support of the bill.

The bike path on San Francisco’s Bay Bridge won’t open to riders on weekdays until this summer.

A Richmond couple build a bike park and give free bikes to kids, even while they’re struggling to make their own rent.

A Redding man gets busted for walking out of a bike shop with a display bicycle after his picture circulates on social media.

 

National

An auto website says one reason our roads and infrastructure are failing is an underinvestment in pedestrian and biking options.

Salon discusses how the humble bicycle continues to set women free and be a key to women’s empowerment.

The North American Handmade Bicycle Show visits Utah for the first, and possibly last, time.

Austin TX tries out an American version of the Chinese-style freestanding app-based bikeshare systems during SXSW.

A Houston bike path comes complete with a separate lane for golf carts.

Sad news from DC, where an editor for Kiplinger’s died after she was struck by a bicycle. Bikes don’t pose anywhere near the danger to others that cars do, but as this tragedy shows, a collision with a bicycle can result in serious injuries, or worse. Always slow down and ride carefully when pedestrians or less skilled riders are around.

Hilton Head NC cyclists can’t win, getting abuse from strollers if they use a bike path and from drivers if they ride in the road.

Macon GA creates a self-guided bike tour through a historic industrial district. But for some reason, promotes it by motor vehicle.

A kindhearted Florida cop bought a new bicycle out of his own pocket for a man whose bike was stolen, after learning it was his only form of transportation.

A Florida bike ministry has provided 37,000 meals and 2,700 bicycles to the needy, who have to earn the bike by working eight hours for a non-profit organization.

City Lab asks if a winding, elevated bike path could improve safety for Miami bicyclists and kickstart a cultural change in the city.

 

International

Why bother cycling at the gym when you can just fidget your way to better health?

Bike Radar wants you to remember who got you started in bicycling, and pass it on to someone else.

The Toronto Star calls on drivers to protect bike riders from doorings.

A British writer says no, the solution to the country’s cycling problems does not include making people ride in glowing tubes in the sky.

Caught on video: A Brit rider posts videos of a trio of ridiculously close passes. This is why you have to take the lane if it’s too narrow to share; hugging the curb only invites passes like this.

A TV news presenter in the UK was the victim of a distracted driving hit-and-run while riding his bike last week.

Food delivery cyclists in France have now unionized to battle the “Uberization” of delivery services.

That solar power-generating Dutch bike path has proved so successful it’s expanding into new areas — including Kern County.

Oslo will become the first city to ban cars from the city center in 2019; the city will also build more than 35 miles of bike lanes in the next two years.

Two Vietnamese men have begun independent bike tours of the country to promote organ donation.

 

Finally…

Maybe riding a bike inside the store isn’t the best idea. When riders and port-a-potties are blowing across the road, cancelling the event probably isn’t the worst idea.

And anyone can drive a stock car at 200 mph. It takes real courage to wear spandex.

 

Morning Links: LA elections: Still hope in CD1, while Koretz re-elected in CD5; living with the pain of killing a cyclist

Disappointing news in yesterday’s LA city elections, with 100% of precincts in.

Anti-bike incumbent Gil Cedillo appears to have eked out a victory in CD1, setting the stage at least five and a half more years of deadly streets as the city switches to holding its elections at the same time as state and national votes.

Although a runoff with Joe Bray-Ali is still possible, as Cedillo topped the minimum 50% threshold by just 198 votes; Bray-Ali issued a statement saying he isn’t conceding until all the votes are counted.

And in CD5, current councilmember Paul Koretz won a final term with nearly two-thirds of the vote over bike-friendly challenger Jesse Creed.

In the end, Creed and Bray-Ali struggled to overcome the power of LA incumbency, where office holders running for re-election almost never lose — thanks in large part to the city’s gerrymandered districts and the massive amount of out-of-district special interest money that inevitably pours in to benefit sitting councilmembers.

Not that those special interests would dream of expecting a return on their investment or anything.

The news was better in CD7, where Bike the Vote LA-endorsed Monica Rodriguez was leading, and will enter a runoff with Karo Torossian if the totals hold.

As expected, the other current officeholders steamrolled to victory over their token opposition in all the other races.

So if nothing changes, it looks like nothing changes.

A few districts with bike-friendly councilmembers such as Joe Buscaino, Jose Huizar and Mike Bonin will continue to get safer and more complete streets, while Cedillo and Koretz will continue to block much needed improvements.

And our city will suffer for it.

But at least we can end on a brighter note, as anti-growth Measure S went down to defeat, handing AIDS Healthcare Foundation’s Michael Weinstein his third loss in three tries at ballot propositions in four months; attempts to regulate drug prices and require condoms for porn shoots statewide lost last November.

And Measure H passed with the necessary two-thirds majority, as the city and county finally appear to be getting serious about working together to end the crisis of homelessness.

……..

This is the cost of traffic violence.

A Massachusetts woman writes about what it’s like to live with the knowledge she killed a cyclist 20 years earlier.

I wasn’t found at fault in my crash; I wasn’t speeding, distracted or impaired on the night I rounded a highway curve and a bicyclist crossed in front of my car, too close for me to avoid. But I will always see him staring wide-eyed at me as he flew into and over my windshield. I will never forget his body at roadside, utterly motionless.

If you remember nothing else I write, I hope you’ll remember this: You do not want to be me. No destination, no text, no drink, no glance away from the road is worth knowing that you have killed another human being. You don’t want to feel you’d give anything not to have been on that road at that time. You don’t want to believe that anything you accomplish in life is offset by the death of another person. You don’t want any happiness you experience to remind you of the happiness denied the person you hit, her family, his friends. You don’t want to struggle to go on living, convinced you don’t deserve to exist, wishing you hadn’t been born.

She still says the collision could have been avoided if only the victim had lights on his bike. But notes that drivers have to change their attitudes to prevent similar tragedies.

Her own friend was killed riding a bike two years ago.

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Cycling News looks back at the day the great Marco Pantini left cycling after being busted for doping during the 1999 Giro d’Italia.

The manager for Italy’s Androni Giocattoli team is royally pissed off that they’ve been excluded from this year’s Giro, calling it the biggest injustice of his career. Then again, Axel Merckx isn’t thrilled his team has been left out of the AToC.

The former Scottish national coach says men’s cycling is shit, but women’s racing is a growth industry.

The new chairman of British Cycling says there’s no evidence the organization isn’t clean. Which isn’t exactly the same as saying it is.

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Local

KPCC’s AirTalk program will discuss California’s proposed Idaho Stop law at 10:40 this morning; you can listen to it live online.

A columnist for the Pasadena Star-News says don’t put the brakes on the Idaho Stop law that can make it safer for California cyclists.

Bike SGV posts more great photos from Sunday’s 626 Golden Streets, where a good time was clearly had by all.

Police in La Verne are looking for a bike-riding burglar after break-ins in a pair of jewelry and cellphone stores.

The Santa Monica Lookout says a new study shows SaMo residents are still sticking to their cars. Maybe if they washed their hands more often…

Pierce Brosnan is one of us, as he goes for a bike ride with his wife on an apparently non-existent beachfront bike path in Malibu.

 

State

Laguna Nigel police will hold an event at city hall on Monday to talk about traffic safety and enforcement.

The Sacramento Bee reviews the one-man performance Concussed: Four Days in the Dark, by comedian Jack Gallagher, based on the traumatic brain injury he got when he was hit by a car while riding his bike.

The driver for the mayor of Sacramento hit a bike rider at a notoriously dangerous intersection on Tuesday evening while the mayor in the car; naturally, they blame the victim for running a stop sign. So if the intersection is so dangerous, why haven’t they fixed it already?

 

National

A new US study posted on an Aussie website shows bicycling can slow the effects of aging, and that older people benefit more than the young. And here I assumed all those close passes were aging me, not realizing I was getting younger, and yes, better looking, with every pass.

Gizmodo says building the new Ikea bike is a pain worth suffering through.

Oregon Congressman Earl Blumenauer calls on bicyclists to use bike advocacy as a tool to save America.

Speaking of close passes, Houston researchers are looking for bicyclist and pedestrian victims of close passes by motorists for a new safety study.

The newspaper for tiny Victoria TX calls on the city to invest in making it more bike friendly.

A new Minnesota study shows bike commuting reduces chronic illness and preventable deaths, saving millions of dollars annually in medical costs. Maybe the GOP should make bicycling a part of their new healthcare plan.

This is what happens when you take Vision Zero seriously. Philadelphia’s mayor calls for a three-year plan touching on virtually every aspect of road travel in order to make the city’s streets safer.

It only took NASCAR’s Dale Earnhardt Jr. five minutes into his first bike ride to get flipped off by a Florida driver.

 

International

A Canadian man with type 1 diabetes is riding across the country in the dead of winter.

A Calgary driver says it’s not her fault she hit a cyclist because the sun was in her eyes. Seriously, if you can’t see what the hell is directly in front of your car, pull the damn thing over and wait until you can.

A UK bike advocacy group calls for clarification on the differences between careless and dangerous driving charges after a driver who admitted to a dangerous pass gets just eight months for killing a man on a bike.

British police are asking for bike cam video to protect cyclists and enforce the law against dangerous drivers. It’s questionable whether similar video footage can be used to prosecute drivers for traffic violations in California, where current law says police must actually witness the violation, except in the case of felonies. Thanks to Cyclist’s Rights for the heads-up.

In an update on yesterday’s story, it turns out a Brit bus rider could tell it was a bicyclist fucking in the bushes because he still had his helmet on; his more traditionally attired partner was wearing a coat, at least. Or maybe it was just a couple with a weird bike helmet fetish.

Police in Malvo, Sweden are on the lookout for a pair of bike-by shooters.

Controversy over a 15-year old model aside, the Lagerfeld Paris fashion show featured crepe de chine Bermuda shorts edged in tweed, described as being perfect for space travel, as well as ideal for riding a bicycle. Seriously, you can’t make this shit up.

India’s Business World considers bicycling as a form of public transport.

Bicycling looks at Team New Zealand’s efforts to pedal to victory in the America’s Cup.

An Aussie news site examines how cycling culture around the world differs from Australia’s not-so-great approach.

Taipei is cracking down on sidewalk riders.

 

Finally…

Seriously officer, the wreck couldn’t be my fault, I was asleep at the time. Maybe this Haribo thing is catching on.

And Lance finally gets around to admitting he was a dick. Which everyone else knew a long time ago.