Archive for Injuries and Fatalities

South El Monte bike rider killed crossing Rosemead Blvd

A man was killed in a collision while riding his bike near South El Monte Wednesday.

According to the San Gabriel Tribune, 39-year old South El Monte resident Jose Antonio Resendez was crossing Rosemead Blvd at Rush St at 9:35 pm when he was struck by a car headed north on Rosemead in unincorporated LA County.

No word on which direction Resendez going or who had the right-of-way; he died at the scene around 15 minutes later.

The driver remained at the scene.

The story notes both the bicycle and the car suffered moderate damage; as usual, the victim fared worst in the impact.

This is the 35th bicycling collision in Southern California, and the 11th in Los Angeles County. That compares with 17 in SoCal this time last year, and eight in the county.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jose Antonio Resendez and his family. 

Morning Links: Local DUI bicycling death reverberates on the East Coast, and PCH study says OC’s got problems

This is the harm that traffic crimes cause.

The pain of Saturday’s drunken high-speed crash that took the life of 26-year old Tomas Brewer reverberates through his hometown of Gloucester, Massachusetts.

The budding screenwriter came to LA to break into the business; next week his family will come to take him home.

Correction: This piece initially misidentified Brewer’s hometown as Gloucester, England, rather than Gloucester, MA. I apologize for the error; thanks to Phillip, Jay, Sean and Yawfle for the correction. 

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A newly published $400,000 safety study points out the many safety problems for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians on PCH through Orange County.

And needless to say, the possible solutions — and the willingness to actually do something about it — vary from one town to another.

Like Laguna Beach, where the city manager questions removing or reducing lanes or parking; nice to know a parked car could have more value than a human life.

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Maybe it’s yours.

Amid the steady drumbeat of stolen bikes registered through this site, news popped up yesterday afternoon about a bike that had been recovered during an arrest in Westwood.

According to the report, it’s a black, 2015 Fuji Transonic 2.5; the serial number has been removed, so they’re asking for distinguishing characteristics to identify the owner.

If you know someone whose bike has been stolen recently, pass the word along. It would be nice to see the owner get their bike back for a change.

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Even the judge is mad as a 19-year old Michigan driver is somehow allowed to plead down to a misdemeanor for killing a cyclist while high on drugs, resulting in a maximum six months in jail.

His comments are worth considering, since they apply to so many people who injure or kill others while driving impaired, distracted or aggressively.

“You don’t get it,” Alexander said. “You destroyed a life, you destroyed a family and you destroyed another life, yours. You don’t care. You just don’t care.”.

“You just think this is a little inconvenience,” Alexander said. “I don’t think you have any understanding of what you did. You took a life, you took a life and I don’t think you care.”

Maybe it will sink in for someone, somewhere.

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Still more bighearted people, as a Portland bike shop owner receives a $5,000 carbon bike after being selected as National Retailer of the Year. And promptly gives it to a 15-year old autistic kid.

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Local

CiclaValley recaps Tuesday’s meeting of the Metro Bicycle Roundtable. Which I can attest was actually more of a semi-circular arrangement.

Richard Risemberg catches the Ballona Wetlands in full bloom, and says ride out to see it yourself for the good of your soul.

The LA Weekly previews the Los Angeles Bicycle Festival coming to Grand Park on May 8th.

Vin Diesel gives his latest co-star a BMX dirt bike for her 30th birthday. Then takes her ax-tossing.

The annual Tour de Cure Ship to Shore ride to benefit the American Diabetes Association rolls through Long Beach this Sunday. As a diabetic American, I’ll have to take part myself one of these days.

 

State

Coronado plans to reward bike riders of all ages with gift certificates and theater tickets for riding safely and following the law. Although they might improve safety a lot more if they rewarded motorists for driving safely around bicyclists and pedestrians.

Sad news from Tulare, as a bike rider was killed in a collision with a big rig truck; police insist the rider somehow crashed into the truck’s trailer.

After suffering serious injuries in a Fresno hit-and-run, a physician and life-long cyclist says bicyclists have a right to the road, and asks if we can all just get along.

A Berkeley bike rider is suing the city and several civic employees, alleging they were aware of dangerous road conditions that led to his injuries when he hit a pothole.

 

National

Men’s Journal explains why you should take your next camping trip by bicycle.

Portland biketavists are joining the Department of DIY to get their point across, from dropping orange cones to mark bikeways, to shaming drivers and posting signs to slow them down.

After supporting a billion dollar transportation tax last year, Seattle cyclists are understandably pissed off that promised bike lanes through the downtown area have disappeared from the implementation plan.

A New Mexico private security guard is charged with intentionally running down a bike rider with his car, then beating the crap out of him.

Fargo ND police take to a tandem to promote bike security.

Bob Mionske looks at the case of the Michigan rider illegally convicted of impeding traffic, and the $10,000 pro bono legal brief that got the $200 ticket dismissed on appeal.

After a witness proves them wrong, the NYPD finally gets around to correcting their report that said a woman was riding her bike against traffic when she was struck by a car; the witness also says the driver lied about the victim running a red light.

A North Carolina TV station offers a reality check for calls to license, register and tax cyclists; one commenter says riding a bike on the road “is dangerous, not too logical, actually disrespectful to every auto driver the roads were designed for.” But really, it’s bike riders who think they’re entitled, right?

A Florida mom is raising awareness of bike helmets for kids after her son suffered a skull fracture and brain hematoma that went undiscovered for two days, nearly costing him his life.

 

International

Experts say the Rio bike path that collapsed recently, killing three people, was destined to fail and should never have been built in the first place.

Vancouver disability advocates say plans to remove parking spaces near the city’s General Hospital to make room for protected bike lanes would make it too difficult for people to access healthcare services. Evidently, it’s the only major hospital in North America without onsite parking or drop-of zones.

The new law school dean at the University of Windsor, Canada walks the walk by riding his bike to work and meetings at the courthouse, year round. Shouldn’t that be pedals the pedals?

A Toronto columnist aptly observes that traffic tie-ups due to road construction are just a fact of life, but a project to test bike lanes on a busy street has everyone up in arms.

An Oxford, England bookseller returns home after a two-year, 20,000 bike trip around the world, motivated by the cyclists’ travel diaries he sold in the shop.

Evidently, telling a British women’s track cyclist to give up riding and go have babies can be detrimental to your career.

Afghanistan’s Nobel Prize-nominated women’s cycling team falls victim to the country’s notorious corruption; along with the loss of 40-newly purchased bicycles worth $100,000, the team’s recently dismissed coach was accused of using it as his “personal piggy bank and love playground,” marrying — and divorcing — three of the team members.

Aussie police urge bike riders to carry liability insurance in case they crash into someone.

 

Finally…

If your SUV has a blind spot so big it keeps you from seeing a five-year old riding her bike with training wheels, maybe you shouldn’t be driving it. Your long wait for fresh bicycle anime may soon be over.

And it’s about damn time we had a bike riding saint.

Update: Echo Park bicycling fatality confirmed; 22-year old DUI driver book for murder

This is not the news we wanted.

After reaching out to the LAPD, Detective Felix Padilla confirmed that a 27-year old man was killed while riding his bike on Temple Street at Burlington Avenue Saturday evening.

According to the press release prepared by Det. Padilla, a sergeant with the Rampart Division observed a driver traveling at an estimated 60 mph while headed north on Burlington Avenue at around 6:15 pm.

However, before the officer could catch up to him, he heard the driver, identified as 22-year old LA resident Cruz Tzoc, lose control and smash into a parked car before proceeding into the intersection, where he slammed into a man riding his bicycle east on Temple.

The victim, who has not been identified pending notification of next of kin, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Tzoc was found to be over twice the legal alcohol limit, and was booked at the Metropolitan Detention Center on a charge of murder.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the LAPD Central Traffic Division Detectives at 213/833-3713, Detective Felix Padilla at 213/833-3713 or the Central Traffic Division Watch Commander at 213/833-3746. Tips can be made anonymously by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222/8477, or texting to 274637, beginning the message with “LAPD.”

This is the 34th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 10th in Los Angeles County; it’s also the second in the City of Los Angeles since the start of the year.

Update: The Los Angeles District Attorney’s office has identified the victim as 26-year old Tomas Brewer, no city of residence given.

His death was collateral damage when Tzoc collided with the parked car and went through the intersection backwards, dragging Brewer 25 feet to his death  before striking a tree.

Tzoc has been charged with a single felony count of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, and was expected to be arraigned on April 26 in Department 30 of the Foltz Criminal Justice Center, case #BA446088; prosecutors are asking for $130,000 bail.

He faces up to 10 well-deserved years in prison upon conviction.

Let’s hope the DA’s office doesn’t bargain this one away.

Update 2: This is the damage traffic crimes do, as the pain of Brewer’s death reverberates in his hometown of Gloucester, MA. The budding screenwriter had moved to LA in 2013 after graduating college to get into the business.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Tomas Brewer and his loved ones.

Morning Links: Missing bike rider found dead in Echo Park Lake, and a 2nd possible bicycling death in Echo Park

Sad news from Echo Park, as the body of a missing bike rider has been found in Echo Park Lake.

Twenty-seven year old Ramon Piche Beltran disappeared last Tuesday while riding with a friend. He left his bike, bag, cell phone and shoes at the park with his companion, promising to return, but never did.

He was found in the lake around 10:30 am Saturday; no cause of death was reported.

A gofundme account to help support his family has raised over half of the $10,000 goal.

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More bad news from the Echo Park area.

An Instagram post from cachicken reports that a bike rider was killed in a collision at Temple and Burlington sometime Saturday.

A photo shows a bicycle lying in the street, a badly damaged car nearby with the driver’s door smashed in; a comment to the post says the driver tried to flee but was caught.

However, I’ve been unable to confirm the report so far, either through the press or through official channels. I’ll let you know if I get more information.

Thanks to Danny Gamboa for the heads-up on both these stories.

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Cops sometimes get a bad rap these days, but there’s some big hearts in blue out there when it comes to bikes.

After a teenager’s $1,500 bike is stolen at a BMX expo, a Utah cop works to get him a new one, and even throws in some of his own money — then gets the bike signed by the BMX pros at the event.

When a little girl’s bike was stolen, a pair of bighearted Montana cops drove to Walmart and bought her a new one.

Meanwhile, a Spokane cop proves the local kids aren’t the only ones with mad bike skills.

Then again, it’s not just cops. A British bike shop surprises a three-year old leukemia patient with a customized stunt scooter from the US.

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Good read from a Scottish cyclist, who starts off saying bicycling has an image problem in the country — like just about everywhere else — then covers all the bases from political inactivity to making the streets a more democratic space.

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Local

The LACBC is looking for volunteers to support Bike to Work Day pit stops on May 19th.

Cal State Northridge students can now get free bike repair wherever they are, as the student association opens a mobile bike repair shop, which charges for parts only.

A mountain biker from LA is recovering after being bitten by a rattlesnake while riding above Altadena; with no cell reception, he had to ride five miles to get help.

 

State

An Orange County mountain biker was rescued in critical condition after falling 200 feet off a Laguna Beach trail.

Seriously? Del Mar and Carmel Valley residents oppose an on-demand stop light intended to improve safety for kids walking and biking to school because it might increase congestion and be hard to see. So they’re saying the life of a child isn’t worth having to stop for a few seconds every now and then? Got it.

The San Diego Padres will take over sponsorship of the city’s Pedal the Cause to raise funds for cancer research.

San Diego cyclists ride in honor of Gordy Shields, the bike advocate and racer who fought for a soon-to-be-completed bikeway around the bay, right up to his death at age 95.

Napa Valley considers replacing planned flyovers on a busy freeway interchange with traffic circles, in part to improve safety for cyclists.

A South Dakota couple thanks Redding police for recovering their bicycles just two days after they were stolen.

 

National

City Lab says the best way to avoid bad street designs is to copy the good ones.

Now that both are gone, Portland’s annual Bowie vs Prince Ride is ending as well.

A Washington driver was allegedly under the influence of alcohol, marijuana, benzodiazepines, anti-depressants and sedatives when he fled the scene after running down a cyclist; he passed out in the back of the patrol car after his arrest. But other than that, he was perfectly sober, right?

A year later, there’s still no arrest in the apparently random shooting of a Colorado man who was fatally gunned down while riding his bike.

Shameful. Twenty-one Iowa bike riders have been killed in collisions since 2011, yet not one driver has faced a single day in jail; the most common punishment was a $250 fine.

Nebraska gets it’s first protected bike lane on a Lincoln street.

Slap, meet wrist. A 72-year old Minnesota driver gets a whole one year of unsupervised probation for killing a cyclist after crossing onto the wrong side of the roadway, and slamming into the man as he rode his bike on the opposite shoulder.

The New York Times offers a guide for nervous cyclists attempting their first ride in the city.

Over 150 wounded vets are teaming with 600 able-bodied cyclists on a 110 mile ride from the Pentagon to Gettysburg to help them come back from their injuries.

A Charleston driver gets it, saying the debate over a proposed bridge bike lane is really a question of the convenience of motorists like himself versus the safety of bike riders, even though he’ll never use it himself. Not everyone gets it, though; another driver complains about the seven seconds the lane might add to his commute. Yes, seven seconds.

 

International

NPR looks at the scourge of motor doping.

The Times says Brazil’s fatal bike path collapse raises questions about the country’s readiness for this summer’s Rio Olympics. It should raise a lot more questions than that.

An international coalition is working to connect bikeways on both sides of the Detroit River in the US and Canada.

A bike cam view shows exactly why a proposed Toronto bike lane is needed.

Montreal police want to ban bicycling under the influence, while a local cycling organization says there are bigger problems, like dooring.

A London woman tries every other commuting mode, and finds bicycling is still the quickest, most pleasant and nearly the cheapest way of getting to work. But wonders if she should get back on her bike after her third wreck in 10 years.

The Department of DIY strikes in the UK as someone paints “Door Lane” in a door zone bike lane.

The only separated bikeway in Hyderabad, India falls victim to a multi-level road widening project.

That’s one way to improve bike safety stats. The draconian fines on cyclists in Australia’s New South Wales appear to be scaring people off their bikes.

A writer in Singapore looks at the conflict between motorists and cyclists from a decidedly windshield perspective, and throws pedestrians in for good measure.

 

Finally…

No sexism here, as a track cyclist is told to forget the Olympics and just go and have a baby. Evidently, it doesn’t take much to terrorize the streets of London; a few hundred wheelie popping teenagers will do the trick.

And 400 years after his death, research proves Shakespeare was one of us.

 

Update: 54-year old salmon cyclist killed in Perris collision

Sad news from Perris, as a bike rider was killed in a wrong-way collision on Wednesday.

According to the Press-Enterprise, the victim, identified only as a 54-year old man, was riding against traffic on the 300 block of Fourth Street when he was struck by a work truck around 4:43 pm.

He was taken to a hospital, where he died sometime later.

No other information is available at this time.

street view shows a wide four lane roadway with a center turn lane, with sidewalks and a wide concrete gutter on either side. No word on why he would have been riding on the wrong side of the roadway, rather than with traffic or on the sidewalk.

Anyone with information is urged to call Riverside County Sheriff’s Deputy Kiebach at 951/210-1000.

This is the 33rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the second in Riverside County; it’s also the fourth bicycling fatality in Perris in less than three years.

Update: The Press-Enterprise reports the victim has been identified as Perris resident Roger Villegas. He died at Menifee Valley Medical Center before 5:30 pm, roughly 45 minutes after the collision. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Roger Villegas and his loved ones.

Morning Links: Cyclist critically injured in Malibu, May’s Ride of Silence, and an in-depth Irish look at cycling

Bad news from the ‘Bu.

I had received reports of a cyclist down on PCH, but hadn’t been able to get any information over the weekend.

Tuesday, the answer came in the form of a gofundme account asking for donations to help defray the medical expenses for Steve Striver, who was hit by a car while riding in Malibu on Saturday.

Here’s what Edie Raff Pratt, author of the page, had to say.

After being airlifted to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Steve underwent 6 hours of surgery to begin to repair the damage. The surgery went well however Steve remains in critical condition in the Neuro ICU unit at the hospital.

Steve’s injuries are extensive and severe. Trauma and bleeding in his head, a bruised heart, a punctured lung, fractured ribs, left wrist fracture, right hip fracture, pelvis fracture, left femur fracture, scapula fracture, lower broken back, extensive wounds on his body and face from road rash.  Honestly, there is hardly an unbroken or contusion free area on his body.

Once Steve gets past the initial hurdles in the hospital, he will have extensive and challenging rehabilitation and a long road for recovery ahead.  We appreciate any prayers of healing you can provide for Steve as well as prayers of comfort for his wife Marianne and their four children Claire, Tim, Sam and Jeffrey.

Steve Shriver is a husband, father, son, brother, friend to many, artist, musician, cyclist, surfer, gentle soul and one of the best people to ever know.

As you can imagine, the medical bills ahead will be mounting.  This page and fundraiser is set up by friends of Steve & Marianne Shriver and family, so that we may raise money for the medical bills and expenses related to them. All monies will go directly to the Shriver family.

As of this writing, the fund has raised a little more that $15,000 of the $250,000 goal in the first 18 hours.

Thanks to Adam Ginsberg for the heads-up.

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We’re less than one month away from the annual Ride of Silence to remember bike riders who’ve lost their lives in the past year.

This year’s ride will take place on Wednesday, May 18th, the evening before LA’s Bike to Work Day.

The Pasadena ride around the Rose Bowl will be held as usual, while CiclaValley writes that he will be leading a first-time Ride of Silence through the San Fernando Valley.

And for the fifth year in a row, the Anthony Martinez Jr. Memorial Bike Ride will be held in Oxnard to remember victims of traffic violence. The ride is named for a six-year old boy who was tragically killed while riding his bike on Thanksgiving Day in 2011; his father is now a tireless advocate for bike safety.

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The Irish Times goes all in on bicycling, with a series of stories looking at riding from almost every conceivable angle.

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As long as we’re doing bullet points, let’s keep it going with a look at bikes in the news.

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Local

Not only will we be getting a protected bike lane on Los Angeles Street, it will also be LA’s first curb-protected bike lane. Maybe that will actually be enough to keep the LAPD from parking their patrol cars in it. We can hope, right?

Taylor Swift may be one of us, as she keeps what looks like a three-wheeled pedicab stashed outside her Beverly Hills home.

Santa Clarita is hosting an open house tonight to discuss the future of pedestrian and bicycle trails between Saugus and the Santa Clara River trail.

Long Beach photographer John Montich opens a new exhibit looking at unrideable bicycles.

Unbelievable. The multiple cities in southeast LA County that make up the Gateway Council of Governments propose spending exactly zero on active transportation projects if the planned transportation sales tax measure passes. Yes, nothing.

You’re invited to a costumed Tour de Phat People bike ride visiting some of their favorite Highland Park watering holes this Saturday.

 

State

So much for equity on our streets. Two bills in the California legislature calling for equity in transportation funding and accessibility for low-income communities die lonely deaths for lack of support.

A San Diego cyclist is injured in a collision with a homemade three-wheeled “Star Trike” motorcycle; the driver naturally puts all the blame on the bicyclist, even while an on-screen graphic notes the trike — and presumably, the man riding it — has been involved in eight previous wrecks.

Murrieta police bust three transients and recover several stolen bicycles after responding to a burglary at a bike shop and spotting a man ghost riding another bike.

Santa Barbara planners approve plans for a 2.6 mile bike path. Or maybe it’s a bike lane; the story isn’t clear.

A 19-year old Napa man is busted after being spotted riding a $9,000 stolen bike.

 

National

People for Bikes says protected bike lanes can actually reduce the cost of building new roadways by lowering the cost to manage storm runoff.

Chicago cyclists can finally take their bikes on commuter trains, though few turn out to take advantage of it.

Streetsblog says everyone loses in the ridiculous bikeshare fight between Hoboken and Jersey City.

Caught on video: A New York cyclist offers a high-speed look at his ride to work, catching nine traffic violations by motorists on a single 12-minute commute.

Aussie model Elyse Taylor is one of us, as she rides her retro-style bike through the streets of Gotham in her high-waisted jeans.

A DC church is hosting a bicycle blessing next month to try to mend fences between cyclists and churches that fought over bike lanes.

 

International

Turns out pro cycling’s Dr. Dope was caught up in the Panama Papers scandal, hiding over $1 million in offshore accounts.

The Oxford Mail asks if we’re all riding the wrong bike, except for maybe for roadies, closet and otherwise.

The Telegraph asks why British courts show remarkable leniency to drivers who kill bike riders.

A new British study says nearly half of all hit-and-run drivers wouldn’t have fled if they only knew it was illegal. To which I politely respond, bullshit.

Caught on video 2: A pair of Brit thugs wrench a bike from the arms of a 13-year old special needs kid the day before his bar mitzvah.

Caught on video 3: An Edinburgh cyclist posts video of the taxi driver who attacked him last year after they exchanged words following a too-close pass; the driver was fined after pleading guilty to careless driving and assault.

A new photo book captures the agony and the ecstasy of the Tour de France dating back to 1939; one of the photographers involved calls Lance an arrogant prick.

Former heavyweight champ and current mayor of Kiev is now one of us as he rides his folding bike to work, to the ambivalent reactions of his constituents.

Ride your ebike on the sidewalk in Tel Aviv, and face a $70 fine.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can build a better bicycling body by eating nothing but pizza every two hours. Not even the Dawgfather can block a planned bike lane whose time has come.

And if you put a statue of Johnny Cash next to a bike trail named for the late singer, tourists will park in your driveway.

No, really.

 

Update: Bicyclist killed riding in carpool lane of the 10 Freeway in Alhambra

Some crashes just don’t make any sense.

According to multiple sources, a man was killed riding his bike on a freeway in Alhambra this morning.

The victim, identified only as a man in his 40s, was inexplicably riding in the carpool lane of the eastbound 10 Freeway just west of Garfield Ave at 4:30 am when he was run down from behind by a Metro bus.

He was pronounced dead at the scene; the LA Times reports the impact knocked him onto the train tracks in the center divider. The speed limit there is 65 mph, so there was virtually no chance of survival.

Bicycles are banned from most freeways, and the 10 through Los Angeles County is no exception. Even where it is allowed, bikes are not permitted in the traffic lane, let alone in the far left lane.

There’s no word on why he was there, or where he may of entered the highway. Or whether he had lights on his bike at that hour.

This is the 32nd bicycling fatality in Southern California, and ninth in Los Angeles County.

Update: The victim has been identified as 40-year old Eduardo Castillo, who is described only as a transient. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Eduardo Castillo and his loved ones.

Thanks to Henry Fung for the heads-up.

82-year old retired CA Bar judge dies two weeks after bicycling collision in Palos Verdes Estates

More sad news today.

Two weeks ago, we linked to a story saying an 82-year old man was hit by a car while riding in Palos Verdes Estates.

Today the Daily Breeze reported the victim has died.

Marina del Rey resident Peter Krichman was riding on the 100 block of Palos Verdes Drive West on Friday, March 18th when he was hit by a car at 11:45 am.

He was unresponsive following the wreck, and was taken to County Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, where he passed away on April 2nd without regaining consciousness.

No word on how the collision occurred, or if the driver was cited.

A street view shows what appears to be a busy residential street with on lane headed north, and two lanes south once you pass an initial divider.

According to the Daily News, Krichman was a retired judge with the California State Bar, who was scheduled to be one of the first residents of the Los Angeles Jewish Home’s upcoming Fountainview at Gonda Westside.

In fact, he is featured on the website of the new retirement community, which pictures him in his riding gear, and says he typically rode at least 100 miles a week.

The Facebook page for BikinginLA sponsor Pocrass and De Los Reyes says the firm had represented Krichman after he was injured hitting a pothole while riding in the Marina two years ago. Yet even at 80, he was back on his bike as soon as he recovered.

It’s worth taking a few minutes to read the Daily News piece by reporter Larry Altman; every fallen rider should be treated with that much respect.

Following today’s death in Studio City, this the 31st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the eighth in Los Angeles County. That compares with just 12 deaths in the seven-county SoCal region this time last year, and five in the county.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Peter Krichman and all his family.

Thanks to Jim Lyle and John McBrearty for the heads-up.

 

 

Update: Bike rider killed in Studio City collision

Multiple sources are reporting that a bike rider has been killed in a collision in Studio City this morning.

The male victim, who has not been publicly identified, was hit by a truck while riding on the 12000 block of Ventura Place around 7:45 am.

He was pronounced dead at the scene. No other information is available at this time.

Ventura Place is a short, four-lane commercial street running diagonally between Ventura and Laurel Canyon Boulevards.

This is the 30th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh in Los Angeles County; it’s the first fatality in the City of Los Angeles since the start of the year.

Update: BikinginLA sponsor Josh Cohen points out that a photo on the KABC-7 website shows the covered victim’s body resting near the crosswalk on southbound Redford Ave, at the entrance to Ventura Place off westbound Ventura Blvd.

Update 2: The Daily News has identified the victim as 42-year old North Hollywood resident Cario Joseph Castaneda. The paper says he was riding west when he was struck by a private trash truck as he entered the intersection.

Other reports indicated the driver was traveling in the same direction, suggesting Castaneda may have been right hooked, possibly as he came off the sidewalk. 

A comment from Alberto identifies Castaneda as his nephew, and says he was riding to work as he did every morning. 

Meanwhile, CiclaValley writes movingly about the impact of a death that stuck so close to home.

Update 3: Castaneda’s family is attempting to raise funds to pay his funeral expenses; so far they’ve raised $5,600 of the $20,000 goal. 

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

Thanks to Glenn Bailey for the heads-up.

Morning Links: AP gives a little on crash not accident, and headphones don’t cause distracted riding

The AP finally gives a little on calling crashes accidents.

The latest edition of the press network’s new stylebook will advise reporters not to use the term when “negligence is claimed or proven,” since it could be interpreted as exonerating the person responsible.

Now we just have get them to flip that, and tell reporters and editors to never call a crash an accident unless it’s proven that no one’s at fault.

But it’s a start.

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Britain’s equivalent of AAA is the latest to blame distracted walkers and cyclists for collisions, calling them smombies, or smartphone zombies.

Yet like so many others, they also throw headphone-wearing bike riders into the distracted riding mix. Even though headphones only affect hearing, rather than focus.

Here in California, it’s legal to wear headphones or earpieces in one ear, illegal to use them in both.

But blaming them for distracting riders is like saying drivers are distracted when they have their windows rolled up and the radio on. It may keep them from hearing the fire truck blaring its siren next to them, but it doesn’t significantly distract their focus from the road.

Just as riders don’t suddenly lose their ability to concentrate on the road ahead of them when they plug the second earpiece in.

It may not be legal. And it may not always be smart.

But it’s time to stop the ridiculous narrative that equates it to distracted driving.

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The LA Weekly looks at the man who is using the AIDS Healthcare Foundation to fund his personal LA anti-growth campaign, while an OpEd in the Times says increasing density is more effective in fighting global warming than raising fuel economy standards.

Meanwhile, chapter four of former NYDOT Commissioner Sam Schwartz’ new book Street Smart: The Rise of Cities and the Fall of Cars offers the best explanation I’ve seen of why density makes sense.

And why’s it’s necessary for healthy cities, and to make walking and bicycling viable options for most people.

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Local

The LACBC’s Eric Bruins says Metro wants to know how you’d slice the proposed $120 billion for transportation funding in LA County. Let’s start by not wasting it on widening any more freeways.

CiclaValley offers much-needed advice on taking your bike on the subway. Or any other Metro train, for that matter.

The Long Beach Grand Prix course is all yours for a whopping 75 minutes around noon today, as long as you’re biking, walking, skating or using some other form of non-motorized transport.

 

State

A Santa Cruz man is building an oversized mountain bike for taller people.

Sad news from Central California, as a 92-year old bike rider died in a collision with a 91-year old driver.

Northern California’s Caltrain is adding an additional bike car to their trains, increasing bike capacity from 48 to 72.

Tiburon residents worry that a new bike and pedestrian plan designed to improve accessibility could encourage more bike traffic. Which is kind of the point, isn’t it?

A Vacaville man faces a hit-and-run charge for a violent collision with a cyclist last August. Once again proving the inadequacy of current laws, as he faces a max of just four years for a needless wreck caused by overly aggressive driving that left a rider in a coma for two and a half weeks.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on how to deal with a little — or a lot — of rain, and how to keep your knees from hurting when you ride.

Who says bikeshare bikes are slow? A Hawaiian man riding one beats an experienced triathlete runner in a four mile uphill time trial. By four minutes, no less.

A Portland university is working to develop standards for safe intersections.

Caught on video: A Seattle bike rider narrowly avoids a collision with an SUV by turning hard to the left, though his momentum nearly throw him under the vehicle.

Caught on video 2: An Indianapolis bike cop challenges a couple of kids to a race.

New York cyclists can get a little divine protection at the annual Blessing of the Bicycles at the end of this month; LA’s very ecumenical Blessing of the Bicycles will take place at Good Samaritan Hospital on May 17th. Thanks to Tim Rutt for the heads-up.

A Charlotte NC newspaper wisely warns drivers to expect bicyclists to do the unexpected and give them room on the road.

South Carolina officials close off a lane on a busy bridge for two months as a test to see if they can make room for a bike and pedestrian lane.

Police in St. Petersburg FL are cracking down on bicyclists and pedestrians to improve traffic safety. Probably because it’s easier than attempting to tame the people in the big, dangerous machines.

A Florida paper says it’s time for the state legislature to actually do something about bills to protect cyclists and pedestrians; one would require drivers to allow a bike rider to clear an intersection before turning.

 

International

Vancouver joins the Vision Zero club.

London bike couriers fight for a minimum wage, holidays and sick pay.

It’s been a rough few days for dogs in the UK, as one pup barely survives a collision with a bike rider, while another was repeatedly kicked following an argument between its owner and a man on a bike. Seriously, no matter how pissed off you are at the owner, don’t take it out on the dog. Or anyone else, for that matter.

A business in the UK warns that cyclists who ride under the influence are ten times more likely to be injured than sober riders — then makes a blatant pitch for their roadside breathalyzer.

A South African man goes from stealing bikes to running his own bikeshare company. Let’s just hope he bought the bikes he’s using now.

 

Finally…

Okay, so maybe you shouldn’t blow your tax return on a new bike. Don’t try to lowball a bike seller, or you could end up at a brothel.

And try solving a Rubik’s Cube while riding on one wheel. Then do 116 more.

 

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