Archive for Road Rage

Morning Links: Traffic violence on our streets, Metro Bike runs red light, and Westwood ignores needs of students

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Today’s common theme is traffic violence, both literal and figurative.

USC fans were heartbroken to learn that former running back Joe McKnight was the victim of an apparent road age shooting on the streets of New Orleans; a tragedy made possible, if not inevitable, by a proliferation of short-fused drivers with easy access to guns.

Meanwhile, in an equally, if not more, heartbreaking case, a suspected drunk driver once again proved that no one is safe from the carnage on our streets, as a five-year old South Central boy was killed inside his own apartment. The driver plowed into the building after allegedly being cut off by another driver; inside, investigators found the boy’s letter to Santa asking for a new bicycle.

Which leads us to CiclaValley, who offers a bike cam compendium of drivers behaving badly. And yes, someone could easily compile similar video clips of scofflaw cyclists or pedestrians. But it’s the people in the multi-ton machines who pose the greatest risk to others by their bad behavior.

When cyclists break the law, they generally put themselves at risk. But when drivers break the law, it poses a danger to everyone on the street.

Or sleeping in their own homes.

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Frequent contributor Erik Griswold notes that at the 30 second mark of its Metro Bike Instructional Video, Metro appears to tacitly encourage users to ride through flashing red lights.

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A writer for UCLA’s Daily Bruin justifiably takes the Westwood Neighborhood Council to task for favoring policies that ignore the needs of the students who live and study in the area, including last year’s denial of desperately needed bike lanes on Westwood Blvd.

The heavy-handed demands of the area’s wealthy homeowners have killed any semblance of vibrancy in Westwood Village, leading to streets filled with empty storefronts, and driving students — and their money — to other parts of the city. Like a scene out of Footloose, the city even prohibits dancing at restaurants and bars within the Village.

No, really.

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Local

The LACBC is hiring an Organizing Director.

Former pro Phil Gaimon is on a one-man mission to erase convicted doper and dope dealer Nick Brandt-Sorenson’s name from the top of LA area Strava KOMs.

A 6th grade student is on a one-girl mission to provide safer access for bicyclists to the Ballona Creek bike path in Del Rey and Playa Vista.

 

State

About one hundred Laguna Beech mountain bikers rode through the Laguna Coast Wilderness Park as part of the second annual Dirt Fondo Challenge, benefitting the Laguna Beach Interscholastic Mountain Bike Team.

For the second time in two days, a San Diego area bike rider has suffered a serious head injury, apparently without a car involved. This time a helmeted rider fell in San Marcos and struck his head on the pavement; fortunately, his injuries are not life-threatening.

Members of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition offer strategies on how to improve safety in the South of Market district.

San Francisco State University is California’s latest Bicycle Friendly University.

Soon you may be able to make plans for a wine and cannabis bike tour of Sonoma County.

A bike-riding Scrooge stole four citrus trees planted by an Eagle Scout at an Orangevale church to help feed the hungry.

 

National

In typically obtuse government-ese, the US DOT announces it’s forming a 15-member committee to advise the Secretary of Transportation on matters related to transportation equity. Which sounds great until you consider that the incoming administration could dissolve it next month.

A writer for Momentum Magazine considers the value of clipless bike shoes, and concludes they’re worth it.

The Seattle Times recommends taking your own folding bike when you travel.

Grind TV asks if Sedona’s White Line Trail is the world’s most dangerous mountain bike trail. Judging by the videos, it’s definitely not one for anyone with a fear of heights.

Bicycling Magazine profiles an ex-vegetarian New Mexico man who hunts elk by bike, with his miniature poodle at his side.

Des Moines, Iowa makes plans to hire a full-time bicycle coordinator, if it survives the budget process.

A small free library is unveiled as a memorial to a Wisconsin woman who was killed by a sidewalk-riding bicyclist. We can all agree this is a needless tragedy. But instead of fighting for higher fines to stop people from riding on the sidewalk, why not fight for safer streets so no one will feel the need to?

Caught on video: Philadelphia police are looking for a teenager who rode his BMX up to a garage before setting it on fire.

This is why you always carry ID when you ride. A New York bike rider died after an apparent fall; however, police have been unable to identify him or notify his next of kin because he wasn’t carrying any identification.

A group of BMX riders recorded the action after sneaking into a Long Island water park; police are looking at the video as evidence of a trespassing violation.

Now that’s what I call a bike locker.

 

International

Cycling Tips considers why two bike brands haven’t moved their production to China.

Police in British Columbia recovered “dozens and dozens” of stolen bicycles and e-scooters when they took down a bike chop shop.

Torontoist makes the case for why delivering food by bicycle is good for neighborhoods.

Caught on video: A Brit bike rider barely escapes a pass from a truck and trailer that looks like it would violate a one-foot passing law.

Two percent of Irish commuters go by bike, a figure that hasn’t changed in the last year.

The Guardian looks at the recent report that bicyclists now outnumber cars in Copenhagen, where a $145 million investment in bikeways has resulted in a 68% increase in ridership. Thanks to Jon for the heads-up.

Malta warns visiting EU officials not to cause a diplomatic incident by running red lights or carrying a passenger on their bicycles.

A man in the Southern Africa country of Malawi killed his own half-brother in a dispute over a bicycle.

Cyclists in the Australian state of New South Wales won’t have to carry ID when they ride after all, as the government belatedly realizes that most riders already do anyway.

 

Finally…

Maybe bicycling really is the new golf, especially if your bike is made entirely of golf clubs. It’s not just an ebike, it’s a two-wheeled boom box.

And it takes a hero cyclist to save a drowning panda.

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A special thanks to Michele Chavez for her generous contribution to support this site during the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

 

Morning Links: Van Nuys bike rage leads to murder and car theft, Guidroz gets ten years, and a sidesaddle Sagan

Horrifying story of an apparent road rage murder in Van Nuys.

According to the Daily News, the whole thing started when a bike rider hit a car’s windshield after the driver honked at him Sunday night. The driver responded by getting out of his car, only to get punched by the bicyclist, who then got into the other man’s car and drove off, as a passenger bailed out the right side.

When the driver tried to grab the door of the car as the bike rider was driving away, the rider responded by ramming the driver’s side of the car into parked cars, forcing him to let go.

The victim was taken to a local hospital, where he died.

The suspect was last seen driving away on Sepulveda Blvd in the victim’s car. He’s described as a Hispanic male approximately 20 to 30 years old, around 5’11” and between 140 and 160 pounds, wearing a dark-hooded sweatshirt and dark pants.

Anyone with information is urged to call Valley Bureau Homicide Detective Steve Castro at 818/374-1925.

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As expected, Lucas James Guidroz was sentenced to ten years after pleading guilty to gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and hit-and-run resulting in death in the May death of math teacher, music director and musician Rod Bennett as he rode his bike on Placerita Canyon in Santa Clarita.

Guidroz apologized before the sentence was announced, saying he’d take it back in a heartbeat if he could.

The problem with remorse is it always comes too damn late.

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Caught on video: Peter Sagan rides sidesaddle.

I used to do that all the time to make my patented flying dismount, before switching to cleats made sticking the landing a tad problematic; the real trick is to pedal from that position.

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Local

UCLA is gearing up for the sixth annual Bike (Re)cycling Day this Sunday, when students, staff and faculty can claim abandoned bikes and parts.

The Pasadena Chamber of Commerce calls for moving the planned Union Street two-way cycle track to the north side of the street to avoid conflicts with businesses on the south side.

The Santa Monica Bike Center is offering 20% rentals to help you cast your vote this election day.

A member of the Big Orange Cycling club suffered head, rib and back injuries when she was rear-ended in Rancho Palos Verdes on Sunday; witnesses report her shoes were still clipped into her pedals following the crash.

 

State

A Laguna Beach newspaper remembers surfer and sailor Jack Meehan, a local resident killed while riding his bike in Santa Cruz last month.

A competitive cyclist is calling for safety improvements, including narrowing the 14-foot wide traffic lanes, after he was the victim of a hit-and-run while riding in an Encinitas bike lane last August.

A lightless San Diego bicyclist suffered a broken leg when he allegedly rode through a stop sign and into the path of an oncoming car.

Someone at UC Santa Barbara is apparently going after a Masters in sarcasm, reporting that the university has decided to turn the entire campus into a bike lane.

Authorities are looking for the bicycle a young man was riding before he was found buried in a shallow grave on the Sonoma State University campus.

 

National

Bloomberg notes that bike lane networks can even improve the health of people who don’t ride, and are more cost-effective than the majority of preventive health measures. However, that’s actual networks, not a few disconnected lanes like we have in Los Angeles.

Seattle dropped speed limits on over 2,400 miles of city streets in order to improve safety. Which is exactly what LA needs to do, but probably can’t due to the outdated and deadly 85% law.

Denver’s bikeshare system is free today only to encourage people to ride to their polling place.

A Minnesota writer says a ghost bike is a beautiful sentiment, but the best way to honor fallen riders would be to actually improve safety.

The driver responsible for the Kalamazoo massacre last June has been ordered to stand trial for the allegedly drug-fueled crash that killed five cyclists and injured four more; he faces up to life in prison if convicted on any of the five second-degree murder counts.

Durham NC installs green bike lanes through an intersection in a continuing effort to improve safety on a notoriously dangerous street.

A non-driving Atlanta writer tells drivers to just calm down, while noting the irrational anger many motorists exhibit when a bicyclist breaks the law, even though they don’t obey traffic laws, either.

An Alabama letter writer complains about “unsightly” Share the Road signs that he insists are for the benefit of outsiders, since no one he knows rides a bike.

 

International

The victims of a British Columbia crash were all members of a club that raises funds for the local Parkinson’s Society; one rider was killed and two others seriously injured when a driver plowed into the six riders.

Nice piece from London Cyclist discussing five things cyclists should learn to love, from Bromptons and ebikes to airbag helmets and yes, drivers.

A UK cycling magazine discusses the need to look after your heart, noting that heart disease can affect anyone, even if you’re great shape. Seriously, take a few minutes to read this one; it could save your life some day. But remember, the symptoms of a heart attack can be different for women.

Caught on video too: The Sun insists hundreds of wheelie-popping London teens caused mayhem by riding through red lights and weaving through cars while on a ride to raise awareness for a cancer victim. Yes, they rode recklessly, but it’s quire a reach to describe the minimal disruption they appear to have caused as mayhem.

For the first time, there are more bikes than cars in Copenhagen’s city center.

Bicycling is once again becoming cool in China.

 

Finally…

Seriously, if another rider stops to help you after a fall, don’t repay him by whacking him with your bike. When is a bike lane not a bike lane? When it’s a park.

And we should know later today if Donald Trump’s candidacy will grab the yellow jersey or go the way of his ill-fated bike race, while the one he tried to sue to stop is still going strong.

Now go vote already.

Morning Links: Road rage assault in San Diego County, and LAPD looking for shooter of Echo Park bike rider

Come back later today when we’ll have a guest post from Mr. CiclaValley himself as he talks with Toluca Lake resident and pro cyclist Phil Gaimon about next weekend’s inaugural Malibu Gran Cookie Fondo.

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This is who we share the roads with.

San Diego’s 10News reports a road raging driver intentionally knocked a local radio host off his bicycle as he was escorting a disabled cyclist on the Coast Highway in Carlsbad, just a few miles from the end of the Challenged Athletes Foundation’s 620-mile Million Dollar Challenge.

As the rider worked to make it up a small hill, an impatient driver began honking his horn, despite a support van warning cyclists were ahead. So KOGO host Bob “Sully” Sullivan rode back to explain that his riding partner was a paraplegic using a handcycle to get up the hill.

“‘We’ve gone 590 miles, give me 90 seconds, I’ll have him up and over this grade, you can be on your way,'” Sullivan said he told the man. “Completely agitated, he says to me, ‘I don’t care if it’s f-ing God up there. Get out of the f-ing road.'”

Sullivan said that’s when he stopped talking to the man and got back on his bike. The truck’s driver accelerated and hit Sullivan’s bike, causing him to fall to the roadway.

Yet despite the presence of an off-duty Carlsbad cop riding in the opposite direction, no charges have been filed.

“I think he needs to be arrested,” Sullivan said. “Somebody who purposely hits somebody on a bicycle using his car is either assault with a deadly weapon, attempted murder, at the very least shouldn’t be driving a car right now.”

Seriously.

Thanks to Todd Munson for the heads-up.

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The LAPD is asking for the public’s help in finding the person who shot and killed a bike rider in Echo Park last week; 37-year old William Perea was hit with gunfire as he rode at Mohawk and Montana the night of October 17th.

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LADOT says safety remains the top priority on the LA River bike path, as they remind both walkers and bike riders about the statutes governing the pathway and the need to share it safely, in the wake of a collision with a bicyclist that sent an elderly woman to the hospital.

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Equity is the common theme of the day.

Momentum Magazine looks at the nationwide movement to build greater equity in bicycling.

People for Bikes says the massive racial wealth gap is a major barrier to bicycle use, noting that a bike can’t save you money if you don’t have enough to buy one.

And Curbed looks at the speech given by the LACBC’s Tamika Butler that brought down the house at last month’s NACTO conference.

The LACBC deserves a lot of credit for starting this conversation, even before Butler came on board, with its outreach to lower income immigrant communities in the last decade. Along with notable presentations at the National Bike Summit that marked the bike coalition as a national leader on the subject.

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Don’t forget to vote for LA Bike Trains and SAFE (Streets Are For Everyone) for this year’s LA2050 challenge grants; voting ends tomorrow.

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Local

KCET discovers the delicious marriage of bicycling and desserts that is Sweet Ride USA, with new episodes appearing online every Wednesday through November 16th.

KPCC discusses solutions to the first mile/last mile problem for transit users.

The Westwood Village Improvement Association discusses how to improve business and better serve the surrounding community. Oddly, making it safer to walk and bike there doesn’t seem to be an option, even though both would benefit the Village’s long suffering businesses.

Pasadena’s bikeshare system is expected to open next July as the Metro Bike system expands northward; the system is expected to have 400 bikes at 34 docking stations around the city.

The new and improved Agoura Road, complete with shiny new bike lanes, opens in Agoura Hills after a year of construction.

Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson recounts Tuesday’s civil obedience protest ride and lengthy council session in Palos Verdes Estates in his own inimitable style.

 

State

Hats off to OC’s Special Spokes and the San Clemente Rotary for providing special-needs kids with adaptive bicycles. With all the negativity this election year, it’s nice to see people working to make a real difference in kids lives.

A Clovis driver faces up to a year in jail for fatally rear-ending a bike rider last April.

An unidentified man was shot and killed as he rode his bike in Fresno Tuesday night; police are unsure if the shooting was gang-related.

 

National

There’s a special place in hell for someone who would steal a bicycle on loan to a vet from Ride 2 Recovery so he could ride across the US with his dog, who’s suffering from terminal cancer. And in my hometown, no less.

Bike lawyer Bob Mionske writes about a new Close Call Database allowing bike riders to report punishment passes from angry motorists to establish a paper trail in case the driver does it again. Or worse.

A Texas rider says learn to ride safely and obey the law, or don’t ride at all.

A Maine newspaper says the technology for today’s carbon fiber bicycles got its start in the state with Aegis Bicycle, but the company couldn’t hold out against increasing competition and the demand for ever lighter frames.

New York tells cyclists and pedestrians to make themselves more visible, and drivers to pay more attention, in advance of the end of daylight savings time next month. Meanwhile, a new proposal would allow bike riders to get a head start at traffic signals by going with the walk signal for the leading pedestrian interval.

Who was that masked man? A Bronx bike rider is a hero after retrieving a woman’s stolen purse, then riding off before she could thank him. No word on whether he left a silver bike chainlink behind.

Philadelphia police arrested a 17-year old boy in the shooting of a Good Samaritan who got off his bicycle to try to stop an armed robbery; he faces charges including attempted murder and aggravated assault.

Bikes and dogs are now officially banned from Arlington National Cemetery.

A Charleston writer says the city deserves the distinction of being called America’s worst city for bicycling.

 

International

You know Calgary has a lot of bike riders when the city’s bike counter gets maxed out with 68 days still left in the year.

Ella Cycling Tips offers advice on how to recover mentally from a bicycling crash.

Life is cheap in Belize, where champion cyclist Marlon Castillo is fined just $13,000 for the careless driving collision that killed his friend.

Ottawa police release a new PSA campaign explaining how to use and drive around the city’s new bike box and bi-directional bike lanes.

Caught on video: A British cabbie clips a cyclist with his mirror, then launches into a foul-mouthed temper tantrum claiming the rider somehow hit him. And yet some actually question who was in the right.

Tom Cruise is one of us, as he reportedly rides through the English countryside with his new girlfriend.

A Brit cyclist born with just one arm is raising funds to buy a prosthetic arm so he can compete in the Paralympic Games; a Go Fund Me account has raised a little more than half of the £7,500 goal, the equivalent of $9157.

A nine-year old cyclist may be a better climber than most of us, topping Italy’s famed Mt. Ventoux and Stelvio climbs in under 48 hours.

An Aussie writer says Sydney needs to focus less on fining bike riders and more on building some decent infrastructure for them.

A German cyclist survives a night in the snake and crocodile-infested Australian wilds after taking a header over his handlebars and dislocating is shoulder.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to use a bicycle to make your getaway after stealing a bag-full of booze, try not to ride into a lamppost. Why settle for a mere sag wagon when you can have your very own bike butler?

And in LA we have police chases; in London, it’s investment bankers biking away from bobbies.

 

Morning Links: Caltrans meeting Tues, driver chases cyclist onto bike path, and plants close LA River bike path

Bobby Peppey sends news of a couple bike-related developments from Caltrans.

First up is a short survey — available in English and Spanish — regarding the state transportation department’s shift from a strictly motor vehicle-focused agency to planning for an “integrated multi-modal transportation network (including walking, biking, transit and driving) that meets the needs of all users.”

Next, he reminds us that Caltrans will host a public meeting and webinar tomorrow afternoon to discuss the latest developments on SoCal projects and gather public input.

He notes that the last meeting was filled with government bureaucrats who showed little sympathy for bicyclists and other vulnerable road users; in fact, he says he was the only person in the room who wasn’t paid to be there.

As he puts it,

I brought up the intransigence of Los Angeles City Councilmember’s towards building a safe, comfortable system of bicycle infrastructure in our City at the last meeting and hope to not be the only one doing so at the October 25 the meeting.

Let’s hope he’s not.

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Speaking of Caltrans, Richard Masoner of Cyclelicious forwards news that bikes will be barred from Camp Pendleton for the coming week, although riders will still be allowed on the 5 Freeway.

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A rider connecting with the Rio Hondo trail in Rosemead was literally chased onto the trail by a road raging pickup driver, who was only stopped by the bollards at the entrance to the path.

All, apparently, because the cyclist had the audacity to make a left turn into the crosswalk leading to the path by legally using the left turn lane, which did not delay the driver behind him by a fraction of a second.

The rider, identified only as Askeee, notes that he aggravated the situation by flipping off the driver after he honked at him, asking “since when is that an acceptable reason for vehicular assault?”

To which the answer would be, at least since police blamed me for the road raging driver who plowed into my rear wheel after I flipped her off when she angrily honked at me like that.

(Lesson #1: Never flip off the driver behind you.)

Even though that would never be considered an excuse for any other form of assault with a deadly weapon. No one would think it’s okay if someone pulled out a gun and shot the other person after being given the bird, yet the simple fact of being behind the wheel seems to make it okay.

Let’s hope he filed a police report. And that the police take it seriously this time.

Thanks to Frank Lehnerz for the heads-up.

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At least now we know why the LA River bike path will be closed until the Ides of March; the Army Corps of Engineers will be using it as a staging area to remove non-native vegetation from the river channel.

Which does not explain why no notice was given, or why no one seems to give a damn about the needs of bike riders who use it.

At least the Corps promises LADOT has installed a detour path and signage. Which, based on what they offered last year, will likely be just as confusing, circuitous and impractical as ever.

CiclaValley urges everyone to turnout for a public workshop with the Army Corps on November 7th to express your outrage and demand a better solution, as well as emailing them and Congressman Adam Schiff; the LACBC offers some key talking points.

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Damian Kevitt, hit-and-run survivor and founder of both Finish the Ride and SAFE — Streets Are For Everyone — sends word that SAFE Support is up for one of this year’s LA2050 Challenge Grants.

You can cast your vote to support the project here.

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Local

Jesse Creed’s upstart campaign to oust anti-bike lane incumbent city councilmember Paul Koretz in LA’s 5th District has gained the support of some big names in Hollywood.

A Metro committee approves funding for expansion of the DTLA Metro Bike bikeshare into Pasadena, Venice and the port cities of San Pedro and Wilmington. Although the Venice and port city expansions are most likely an attempt to stave off expansion of the Santa Monica and Long Beach bikeshare systems into those areas.

Richard Risemberg writes about the impending departure of Michelle Mowery from LADOT to work on the LA River bike path. Maybe she could start by convincing the Army Corps of Engineers to keep it open a little more often.

The Pasadena city council will receive a report on the city’s bike safety efforts up to this point, along with plans for the future at tonight’s meeting. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

Megan Lynch also forwards news that a cyclist was air rescued after crashing on Glendora Mountain Road; no word on the condition of the rider.

A new master plan including roughly 100 miles of multi-use trails in the Castaic area will go before the LA County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday; the plan also includes three proposed bike skills park amenities. Whatever the hell that means.

Cycling in the South Bay posts the honorees from last weekend’s Fourth Annual South Bay Cycling Awards, and offers a truly devastating first-hand report from the survivor of a life-changing cycling collision.

The California Supreme Court has ruled that killing a Long Beach bike rider with a screwdriver is still murder, even if you kill the wrong person by mistake.

 

State

Kids, don’t try this at home. An off-duty federal agent tried to stop thieves from taking his bicycle by jumping into the back of their pickup, and went on an unwanted seven mile ride through San Diego; both suspects were captured as  they fled after crashing the truck.

A Redlands couple is nearing the end of a 10,000 mile tandem journey around the US.

Over 1,000 cyclists participate in Sunday’s Santa Barbara 100 cycling event to raise Cottage Children’s Medical Center Family Assistance Fund.

San Luis Obispo adopts a Vision Zero plan to eliminate traffic fatalities within 14 years.

Modesto police pitch in to buy a new bike for a junior high student after they were impressed by his detailed crime report.

San Francisco’s Bay Bridge Bike Trail finally opened Sunday, allowing bicyclists to ride from Emeryville to Yerba Buena Island. And back.

 

National

A pair of Minnesota cities are declaring their DIY bikeshare systems a success; the systems make refurbished bicycles available to anyone for free, no ID necessary; surprisingly, 85% of the bikes were returned last year.

New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss is one of us.

Gotham entrepreneurs are doing their best to cash in on the popularity of New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare.

The driver of a stolen car was arrested after deliberately trying to run down a Philadelphia bike cop; fortunately, the officer was uninjured, though his bike appears to have seen better days.

Bighearted Alabama cops dig into their own wallets to buy a bike for a teenager after his was stolen.

Now that’s more like it. A Florida driver got ten years for a drunken hit-and-run that killed a bike rider.

 

International

A Vancouver bike shop worker was sentenced to 18 years for shooting his boss two years ago following a dispute over a rental agreement.

Bicyclists are under attack by anti-bike terrorists around the world, as someone has tossed tacks on the roadway leading to London’s Regent Park twice in the last week; the site is the planned route for one of the city’s cycle superhighways.

A British woman missed her own mother’s funeral after a truck driver forced her bike off the road and into a ditch, leaving her too injured to attend.

A member of Britain’s Parliament says not enough is being done to protect bicyclists from injury and intimidation. No shit.

A former Catholic church in Belgium is now a shrine to the Cannibal.

How about taking your next bike vacation in Tanzania?

An Aussie cyclist has been fined the equivalent of $115 for passing a stopped car on the left — which would be our right; it violated the law because the car was signaling for a left turn.

New Zealand opens a beautiful new sculptural underpass for cyclists in Christchurch.

Sad news for manga lovers, as popular manga artist Hiroyuki Shoji was found dead next to his bicycle in Japan last week.

 

Finally…

Your next bike may not need you to keep it stable. From wrestling champ to BMX podium, before the age of eight.

And the best seat for a bike race is directly above the course. Especially when you’re a black bear.

 

Morning Links: LACBC endorses Measure M, cars used as weapons, and Bill Nye teaches bike riding

The LACBC officially endorsed Metro’s Measure M in the November election

The half-cent sales tax extension is projected to raise $120 billion over its 40-year lifespan, with $4 billion set aside for bike and pedestrian projects

The remainder will be invested in transit projects and wasted on highways.

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The only good thing about these next few stories is there were no bicycles involved.

A horrifying story from Oregon, as a white supremacist couple is charged with using their car as a weapon to intentionally run down and kill a young black man following an argument.

Meanwhile, a Phoenix driver apparently used his car to deliberately run down three cops; fortunately, none appear to be seriously injured.

Funny that we screen gun purchases in the US, but we’ll let any homicidal maniac drive a car.

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Local

A Dutch intern reminds CiclaValley learns not to take riding the Angeles Crest Highway for granted.

Hawthorne is the latest city to announce their police department will be stepping up enforcement of violations that can cause bike and pedestrian crashes tomorrow. So ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limits; thanks to Margaret for the heads-up.

The New York Times talks with LA author Edward Humes about his new book Door to Door: The Magnificent, Maddening, Mysterious World of Transportation, which discusses the inefficiency and wastefulness of the automobile, as well as its potential to kill.

BikeSafe USC is hosting a free bike ride and workshop one week from today.

 

State

The Army Corps of Engineers will shut down the San Luis Rey Bike Trail in Oceanside for six months to remove sediment in the river.

The next phase of the project to widen Highway 101 through Carpinteria began Monday; plans include sidewalks and bike lanes — hopefully separated from the highway.

Santa Barbara County will clear out supposedly abandoned bicycles in student-friendly Isla Vista, despite giving only two days notice; if your bike disappears, check with the sheriff’s department.

Napa police return two stolen bikes to their owners and bust the transients riding them.

 

National

Seattle is thinking about getting serious about Vision Zero by lowing speed limits by 5 mph all over town.

A Fairbanks AK newspaper says the city needs changes in attitudes as well as infrastructure if it’s going to meet its goal of becoming a more bike-friendly community.

Caught on video: A Utah bike rider walks away after being run down from behind by a distracted driver; remarkably, the 16-year old driver wasn’t even cited, despite saying she never even saw the cyclist. Which should be taken as an admission of guilt, not an excuse.

Pueblo CO votes to rip out a protected bike lane, calling the design dangerous from the beginning. So if it was such a bad design, why did they install it in the first place? And why not fix it instead of removing it?

The New York Times calls North Dakota’s Maah Daah Hey Trail the longest, and arguably most grueling, single track route in the US. And stunning, too.

Life is cheap in Iowa, where a distracted driver faces a whopping $750 fine for leaving a cross-country bike rider in a wheelchair.

A Houston paper asks if the city’s comprehensive new bike plan, which calls for 1,700 miles of “safely designed bike lanes and trails,” will end the battle between bicyclists and drivers. Only if they actually build it, unlike most bike plans in most cities. And it’s not much of a battle when ones on two wheels are the only ones getting hurt.

The Illinois Project Mobility works to put disabled vet on specially adapted bicycles to help them re-engage with the world. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

Streetsblog says New York Mayor De Blasio should get serious about Vision Zero instead of getting defensive about his bike policies.

Cyclists call Pennsylvania’s Reading 120 Classic of the Americas the toughest one-day bike race in the US. Thanks to Mike Bike for the tip.

A new study from Virginia’s James Madison University says consuming protein supplements while you ride may help build muscle, but won’t improve your performance.

 

International

You’d have to ride nine hours and 50 minutes a day in peak London pollution before the risks of bad air would outweigh the benefits of bicycling; in Delhi, it would take just five hours a week.

A driver in the UK will face private prosecution for killing a cyclist after a crowdfunding campaign raises $60,000 to fund the trial; government prosecutors twice refused to file charges. Too bad we can’t do that here.

A new UK app will power a first-of-its-kind peer-to-peer bikesharing system.

Caught on video: A British motorcyclist gets off his bike to threaten a bicycle rider after he and a second rider nearly take him out passing on both sides on a roundabout, even though he’s hugging the side of the roadway.

A new poll says that one in four Brits are worried about having a wreck while they bike, while “only” 9% of British workers ride to work. There aren’t many places in the US that wouldn’t be overjoyed to have half that many bike commuters.

An Aussie city council considers requiring all bicyclists to wear hi-viz any time of the day or night, evidently because the councilors can’t be bothered to pay attention to where they’re going.

 

Finally…

Caught on video too: bike cleats and slick floors are not a good combination. Your next ebike could have a Ferrari pedigree.

And learn to ride a bicycle with Bill Nye the Science Guy.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFGl0tXRAjg

 

Morning Links: SD Nobel Prize winner dies on Oregon bike path, homeless bicyclist shot by Santa Ana police dies

Word broke today that Nobel Prize-winning UC San Diego researcher Roger Tsien died last week while on a bike trail in Eugene OR.

He won the prize in 2008 for his work in identifying a green fluorescent protein found in jellyfish that could be used as a biological marker to help illuminate diseases such as cancer and HIV.

No word on how he died, or if he was biking at the time.

………

A 31-year old homeless man has died a month after he was shot by Santa Ana police.

Richard Gene Swihart was riding his bicycle near the Santa Ana Civic Center on August 1st when police tried to stop him and he began struggling with the officers. Swihart was shot after allegedly attempting to grab an officer’s gun.

………

This is why people continue to die on our streets.

A Cincinnati woman gets 13 years for the hit-and-run death of a popular cyclist; at the time of her arrest, she had ten drugs in her system, a bra full of prescription pills, and a purse filled with syringes and a tourniquet. And was driving on a suspended license, with two previous convictions for driving while suspended. Ohio Bike Lawyer Steve Magas, a friend of this site, questions whether justice was done by the harsh sentence, even though he represented the victim’s family in the case.

And the family of a Detroit traffic victim wants to know why a 12-time drunk driver was still on the streets.

Which is a damn good question.

Both of these drivers had already shown themselves unable, or unwilling, to get sober and obey the law, and therefore unfit to drive. Yet they were on the roads anyway.

It’s clear that innocent victims will keep dying until authorities finally start to give a damn. And find a way to keep people like this from ever getting behind the wheel.

………

Today’s debate is over whether power meters should be banned from professional cycling; VeloNews looks five other things that could have ruined cycling, but didn’t.

Chris Froome finally made his move in the Vuelta on Wednesday.

The first all-African women’s team will begin competition next year.

Sad news from Columbia, as a 22-year old cyclist was killed after loosing control on a descent during the country’s under-23 tour.

And if a cyclist continues to race despite being banned, the obvious solution is to extend his suspension so he can keep doing it.

………

Local

Metro is exploring various rail-to-trail options to connect a coming bike path through the Southeast Cities with the LA River.

West Hollywood’s WeHo Pedals bikeshare is now officially a go, though virtually all of the docking stations are centered on the Santa Monica Blvd corridor, ignoring the popular Sunset Strip and other parts of the city.

Today is the official grand opening of the new and improved California Incline leading from PCH up the bluff to Santa Monica — now with walkways and protected bike lanes.

Finish the Ride and Velo Studios are hosting the free community ride Tour de Griffith Park: An Introduction to Safe and Fun Riding this Sunday.

 

State

Newport Beach police are gearing up to increase enforcement and improve safety measures around schools following the death of eight-year old Brock McCann as he rode home from school last May.

A self-described longtime San Diego cyclist says he hasn’t seen any increase in bicycling, and the city should stop stealing traffic lanes and parking spaces from those poor, oppressed drivers. He also complains about how awful downtown is to drive in, and how expensive it is to park, never seeming to grasp the obvious solution to both of those problems.

Los Altos prepares for their annual bicycling Tour de (chicken) Coop.

Sad news from San Mateo County, as a mountain biker was killed riding on an offroad trail.

The local paper warns drivers that some Sonoma County cyclists are armed with bike cams to record their actions. Meanwhile, the BBC asks if bike cams actually make the roads any safer. Which kind of misses the point.

More bad news from Sacramento, as a bike rider was struck and killed by the driver of a garbage truck Wednesday morning.

 

National

GQ concludes that yes, bicycling can be sexy, sort of.

The AP says police are losing the battle to get drivers to put down their phones.

Paris Hilton is one of us, as she rides a colorfully lighted bike at Burning Man.

The Denver bike cop who was nearly killed when he was struck by an out-of-control driver finally return to work after nearly 21 months; the driver who hit him was convicted of lying about suffering from seizures on his driver’s license application.

Albuquerque installs, then removes, a bizarre bike lane running across the middle of a street and into a guard rail.

The driver responsible for the drug-fueled Kalamazoo massacre has been found competent to stand trial; he faces up to life in prison if convicted on the most serious charges.

When is a bike lane not a bike lane? When it’s been blocked by an unused NYPD light tower for three days.

The Wall Street Journal offers advice for the descent challenged.

A DC designer is creating bike frame bags intended to look as good on your back as they do on your bike.

It’s true, bike riders really do run red lights. DC’s red light camera’s caught 1,557 cyclists running reds over a 16 month period — compared to over 60,000 drivers. So who are the real scofflaws?

A North Carolina driver films a bike rider skitching — grabbing ahold of a car and holding on to hitch a tow — on wet streets for five nearly minutes.

 

International

Vancouver will remove a median to install protected bike lanes, even though that means removing a popular hedge creature.

Great Britain’s successful Olympic cycling team says the best way to honor them is for the government to invest heavily in creating a legacy of everyday bike riding.

Caught on video: If you’re looking for the definition of a punishment pass, this is it.

Another day, another road raging British driver screaming at a cyclist and using his car to threaten him. Seriously, what is it about cars that brings out the asshole in people?

It took 14 years to reach a settlement in a case where a road raging driver ran over a then-four-year old girl she rode in a bike trailer pulled by her father. Shockingly, the murderous driver got just two years, despite revving over 200 yards in reverse to asault his victims.

The Guardian’s Peter Walker says all cyclists fear bad drivers.

Then again, it’s not just drivers; a bike rider in the UK was punched by a pedestrian in a seemingly random assault; surprisingly, the attacker chose not to hang around until the police to arrived.

A Kiwi website insists e-bikes are fashion forward.

 

Finally…

Call him a bike riding, hooligan Johnny Appleseed. Your next bike could complain about your riding position.

Or maybe you’d prefer the bicycling equivalent of a luxury car.

No, really.

 

Morning Links: Reverse hit-and-run — driver found, victim missing; and cyclist buzzed and told to “get a car, bitch!”

Usually police look for the driver following a hit-and-run.

This time, they’re looking for a victim.

Azusa police acted on a tip to find a driver who admitted to hitting a bike rider, even though his story seems to have bigger holes than the one in his windshield.

Damaged-car-2

A press release from the Azusa Police Department says the driver doesn’t even know when he hit the cyclist, telling the police it happened at an unknown time and location, sometime between Saturday night and Monday morning.

The driver reportedly said the victim’s friends laughed about it, and that he drove off after talking with the rider he hit, who also left the scene. Which seems improbable, given the major damage to his windshield, suggesting a significant impact.

Never mind that someone would have to be pretty wasted to crash into someone and not even know when it happened, let alone where.

Police don’t know if a crime actually occurred, but are asking anyone with information to call the Azusa Police Department at 626/812-3200.

………

This is who we share the roads with.

Bike commuter weshigh was the victim of not one, but two dangerous passes from the same driver — the last one just a foot away, in clear violation of California’s three foot passing law.

And adding insult to injury, the driver yelled at him to “get a car, bitch!” when he caught up to him at a red light.

A better solution would be if the driver wasn’t allowed to use one anymore.

………

Congratulations to the LACBC’s Tamika Butler on her well-deserved award from the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals for 2016 Professional of the Year – Nonprofit Sector.

Streeetsblog quotes Alta Planning’s Jessica Roberts, chair of the APBP’s awards committee, explaining why she was chosen.

“Los Angeles and the entire region are really important right now, not just to the many people that live there but as a national example,” Roberts explained. “What is in the city’s Mobility Plan demonstrates where our nation needs to go, where active transportation is not an after-thought, but a core strategy…LACBC and Tamika are part of writing that important story.”

Then there’s this from another committee member.

“Tamika has challenged the pedestrian and bicycle professional community to grapple with the ways that privilege and structural inequality are embedded in our transportation system and our profession,” wrote Sarah Fine, a member of the APBP awards committee and a planner with the City of Oakland. “We’re all better for it.”

………

Caught on video: Cycling Weekly offers a bike cam perspective of the Vuelta’s crash-filled stage 10.

Trailing by nearly three minutes, Alberto Contador says his chances of winning the Vuelta are close to nil, although third place Chris Froome thinks he still has a shot.

………

Local

The LACBC talks with 11-year old bike advocate Matlock Grossman, who impressed everyone with his insightful comments about the Rowena road diet.

The Hollywood Reporter offers a detailed look at the terrifying attack on a Beverly Hills surgeon, which started when three people in Venice claimed he damaged a bicycle and demanded $150 on the spot.

KPCC reports on the launch of West Hollywood’s WeHo Pedals bikeshare, with UCLA up on deck.

Pasadena Star-News columnist Larry Wilson gets it, saying despite the fears of merchants — one in particular — over lost parking, it’s time to give bikes a chance. On the other hand, Susan Shelley of the Daily News apparently doesn’t, insisting that free parking and avoiding poetry readings is fundamental right.

CiclaValley continues his tale of a recent Napa wine tasting bike tour.

 

State

Only a few months after confiscating the bikes of off-road riders for trespassing on the base, the Marines’ MCAS Miramar, the former home of Top Gun — yes, that Top Gun —  may open a trail to cyclists.

Five members of Ventura’s Channel Islands Bike Club finish a 3,400 mile ride across the US.

Apparently, it’s not just Coronado. San Jose residents complain about the sharrows “defacing” their neighborhood, describing them as blight and graffiti. On the other hand, it’s nice to know they don’t like sharrows, either.

San Francisco breaks ground on the city’s first protected intersection to reduce conflicts between people driving, walking and biking.

 

National

The federal case against Lance Armstrong reaches a critical phase as both sides request a summary judgment.

The Federal Highway Administration addresses several common misperceptions about bicycle and pedestrian funding.

That’s more like it. An Oregon man gets six years and loses his driver’s license for life for killing a teenage bike rider while visibly drunk. Any conviction for killing another human being while driving should result in the automatic loss of license. Period.

The Detroit News writes about fallen cyclist Karen McKeachie, saying the champion triathlete died doing what she loved. Seriously, if anyone says that about me, I’ll come back and haunt them and their descendants for all eternity.

A Pennsylvania man says he shouldn’t have been driving after using heroin, cocaine and marijuana before getting behind the wheel; unfortunately, it came a little too late for the bicyclist he killed.

Buried in the 3,721 page records of Hillary Clinton’s schedules at the State Department is news that she dedicated a basement shower for employees who wanted to bike or run to work.

 

International

A Vancouver cyclist says a new bike lane is completely terrifying, dumping riders into a shared lane with right-turning drivers.

That super-rich Canadian senator deleted her Twitter account after comparing Toronto’s bike lanes to a third-world country.

A writer for the Montreal Gazette says ghost bikes contradict the city’s myth of shared roads.

Caught on video too: Celebrity is clearly no protection from road raging drivers, as a BBC presenter suffers the wrath of a driver who assaults him and threatens to knock him out for the crime of riding his bike outside the door zone.

A South African mountain biker could face murder charges for fatally stabbing two men he says were trying to steal his bike.

Aussie cyclists call for repealing the country’s mandatory bike helmet law, while physicians warn the rate of head injuries could go up. Of course, the only way to find out is repeal, or at least suspend, the law and study the outcome.

Turns out the Aussie truck driver we mentioned yesterday who buzzed a cyclist, then got out of his truck to repeatedly threaten him is a member of a neo-Nazi group. Which doesn’t seem that surprising in retrospect.

A former soccer player and cancer survivor is planning a 750 mile ride across Japan to encourage people suffering from the disease.

A Beijing blog list 16 things that need banning more than the just banned e-scooters, including cyclists who ignore road regulations, and elderly riders who kick their legs over their bikes without looking first to see if other riders are passing.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to celebrate your victory, wait until you actually do. If you’re already on probation and riding a stolen bike at 3:30 am, don’t attract attention by nearly getting run over trying to cross the street.

And if you can’t sleep, you may be overtraining. But at least you should be happy.

 

Morning Links: Brake-checking driver as victim, cyclists are not obstructions, and going full superman on a bike

So who exactly is the victim here?

A group of around 30 Charlotte NC cyclists were riding in a bike lane when they were dangerously buzzed and brake checked by a road raging driver, who proceeded to swear at them and give them the rare double bird when they caught up to her at a red light, all for no apparent reason.

Charlotte NC double bird

And with her child in the car, no less.

Although she was probably unaware that two of those riders she threatened happened to be off-duty cops.

Oops.

So the riders filed a complaint with the police, while those cops had a nice little chat with the undoubtedly surprised driver.

But that’s when the story took a bizarre turn.

Because when the local TV station was done with it, the victim wasn’t any of the innocent cyclists whose lives she’d threatened.

It was the driver herself, who was said to be working with the police and seeking legal council after alleging she’d been threatened once the story became public.

So instead of focusing on the would-be Dr. Christopher Thompson, the news report approached it from the perspective of how she didn’t deserve to be harassed for what she did.

Which she didn’t.

No one deserves that. Which is why I often withhold the names of drivers accused of criminal acts until they become common knowledge, after seeing the outrage that poured out in the first few days following the Mandeville Canyon brake check — including late night death threats directed at the wrong Dr. Christopher Thompson.

Let alone the person who once politely offered to track down a driver who harassed me and bust his windshield, if not his legs. Or his head.

But while she didn’t deserve the alleged response, let’s not forget she was the one who started it by attempting to threaten, if not injure, a group of people whose only crime was riding their bicycles in the lane designated for just that purpose.

Because they didn’t deserve it, either.

Thanks to Michael Hart of Racers Who Ride for the heads-up.

………

Patrick Lynch forwards a report of a legal case in which police refused to blame a scofflaw driver for breaking the law. And his insurance company tried, and failed, to convince a jury that the bike rider he hit was just an obstruction in the roadway.

………

A cyclist goes full Superman in an ad for a fixie maker.

Although it’s been done before.

………

Wish Los Angeles a happy 235th birthday this Saturday with a walk and bike ride from the San Gabriel Mission to Olvera Street, retracing the steps of the city’s original founders, who didn’t even have a Garmin to guide their way.

LA Birthday Ride

………

Once again, victory in yesterday’s stage of the Vuelta went to someone other than the favorites; the winner was just back from a four-month suspension for failing a drug test.

………

Local

LADOT explains the new cycle hoops pilot program allowing you to legally lock up to parking meters in Westwood. But for now at least, only in Westwood.

Unlike the LA Rams football stadium coming to Inglewood, the new soccer stadium for the coming LAFC franchise promises to be easily accessible by bicycle, with parking for 440 bikes.

Saturday’s Gravel Trofee #4 offers a gravel grinding grid from the Backbone Trail to the beach.

The 17-mile 626 Golden Streets ciclovía postponed from last June due to the San Gabriel Complex fire could be rescheduled for spring of next year, possibly in March.

 

State

A Laguna Beach radio host observes that the wife of fallen cyclist John Colvin has forgiven Dylan Thomas Rand-Luby, the 19-year old driver convicted of taking his life. And notes that there hasn’t been another bicycling fatality in the city since, crediting luck, along with a network of sharrows directing riders off PCH.

Orange County officials are blocking access to a maintenance road used as a de facto bike path along seven miles of the Santa Ana River following complaints about homeless camps along the roadway. However, the Santa Ana River bike path remains open.

Not surprisingly, the driver who killed Redlands cyclist Randy Stephenson in Loma Linda while fleeing from sheriff’s deputies has pleaded not guilty to murder charges.

Simi Valley votes to remove ghost bikes and other roadside memorials after just 30 days. After all, why would they want to bum people out by reminding them to drive, bike and/or walk safely?

The UC Santa Barbara student newspaper traces the history of bicycling at the bike friendly university, where musician Jack Johnson met his future wife by locking his bike to hers in his rush to get to class.

The New York Times says Silicon Valley group rides are the new place to pitch ideas and make deals, if you can keep up; VeloNews responds that cycling is not and never will be the new golf.

The San Francisco Chronicle offers proof that Bay Area bike activism goes back nearly 45 years, including photos taken by the man who shot the iconic Iwo Jima flag raising.

The former Napa Valley Bike Angel is launching a drive to donate bikes and helmets to families affected by the recent Clayton Fire.

 

National

People for Bikes considers what can be done to improve safety on roads filled with distracted drivers.

Evidently, bicycles really are dangerous. A Texas woman was injured by one that fell off a vehicle and struck the car she was in.

A Wisconsin writer says hell yes, cyclists are entitled to their place on the road, and people driving cars and trucks have a responsibility to honor that. Note: Michael Hart points out the writer is the former mayor of Madison WI, and the current president of the Wisconsin Bike Federation.

A security guard for the Chicago ABC affiliate gets credit for catching a wrong-way, probably drunk driver who tried to flee the scene after running down a bike rider; fortunately, the cyclist wasn’t seriously injured.

A woman on Martha’s Vineyard puts out cold drinks to comfort strangers passing by on a bike path in a gesture of hospitality.

It’s not just pedestrians who are at risk from collisions with bicyclists, despite the breathless stories in the press. A New York cyclist was seriously injured going over his handlebars after swerving to avoid a pedestrian who stepped out in front of him while he was riding in Central Park. And in a similar incident, a Texas woman died a month after she was injured going over her handlebars in Central Park, possibly after being cut off by a pedicab.

The New York Times says the death of a 78-year old bike rider shows biking perils persist in the city, as advocates grow angry that the city isn’t doing more to address them.

New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare expands further into Brooklyn, with an additional 139 stations coming by year’s end; however, not everyone is happy with the loss of parking spaces.

A Pennsylvania town is being terrorized by teenage bike riders who pop wheelies, and force drivers to remember where their brakes are.

Road diets can do more than just improve safety; a New Orleans street is being reconfigured in hopes the narrower street and bike lanes will bring life to a crime-ridden neighborhood and encourage businesses to invest there.

A St. Petersburg FL bridge is the latest to be sabotaged by someone throwing tacks in the bike lane; police and DOT officials insist they don’t know anything about it, even though a reporter picked up 30 tacks herself.

A Florida jury deliberates for a whole 10 minutes before giving a bike thief three years for stealing a bait bike. Unfortunately, LA still doesn’t use bait bikes, despite a rampant bike theft epidemic. And most bike thieves here don’t get three days, let alone three years.

 

International

Ella Cycling Tips offers tips on what to do if your lady bits hurt after riding. Assuming you have lady bits, of course.

A Winnipeg man fled on a bicycle after placing a backpack containing a bomb in front of the courthouse; fortunately, no one was injured in the explosion. Meanwhile, a kindhearted Winnipeg couple is fixing up bikes to donate to refugee children. And no, let’s not jump to any connection there.

A man in the UK was the victim of a strong arm robbery after being pushed off his bike by a someone who then rode off on it.

An Indian man plans to become the first visually challenged cyclist to conquer the Himalayas on a tandem.

A new Aussie ER study shows most cycling injuries occurred while the victims were riding on the street, often in bike lanes, and usually in broad daylight.

It was bound to happen sooner or later. A Japanese driver has killed one pedestrian and seriously injured another while playing Pokémon Go instead of watching the road.

 

Finally…

If not being able to ride drives you crazy, you may be right. If you’re going to steal your neighbor’s bicycle, don’t ride past her house on it, especially not while she’s filing a police report.

And do they make these in adult sizes?

No, really.

 

Morning Links: Police investigate as Corona del Mar bully says he’s sorry; Canadian cyclist loses all in theft

Newport Beach police are investigating the video we linked to yesterday showing a bully motorist berating a bike rider in a profanity-laced, homophobic tirade, for the crime of riding on the sharrows.

And yes, they’re now taking it very seriously, after the rider was initially blown off when he tried to file a report.

In case you missed it, the video has now been posted to YouTube, which means we can share it here.

Let’s hope he likes the way he looks on the screen; the Facebook video has been seen over 400,000 times in just the first 24 hours.

KCBS-2 caught up to the driver, who apologized for the language he used, and said he was embarrassed by the whole thing.

“I’m just an old surfer, knucklehead, and I do apologize for using the words that I used,” Lewis told CBS2 reporter Michelle Gile.

However, you’ll note that he didn’t apologize for threatening the victim. Or for clipping him with his mirror, or for the brake check that forced the victim into the left lane to go around him.

And we’re still left to wonder whether even that apology was sincere, or if it was just the result of adverse publicity from a video that went viral.

We’ll have to wait for the NBPD to complete their investigation to learn what charges will be filed, if any. Although there’s a good case to be made for assault with a deadly weapon and hit-and-run if it can be shown that he really did clip the victim with his mirror.

However, LAPD officers have explained in the past that the mere act of getting out of a vehicle to confront someone is enough for an assault charge.

Let alone threatening to kill him.

Meanwhile, the whole thing just shows how far we have to go in educating drivers about sharrows.

And just about every other aspect of sharing the road with people on bicycles.

………

Thanks to David Bain for forwarding word of a Canadian musician who had his bike and all his belongings stolen while attempting to set a Guinness world record on a coast-to-cost bike tour; a gofundme account has raised over $6,500 of a $10,000 goal to help replace it.

………

Kristin Armstrong waited until her victory was confirmed, becoming the first cyclist to win gold three times in the same event, then collapsed and was checked out by medics before her five-year old son came out to give her a hug.

A French rider may have only placed 26th in the women’s road race, but she’s winning the competition to resemble the former Kate Middleton, now Duchess of Cambridge.

Britain threw down the gauntlet with a world record on the first day of qualifying for the women’s 4,000 meter team pursuit, while the men struck gold in the team sprint.

The great Evelyn Stevens decides to walk away from pro cycling at the peak of her career, just seven years after quitting her job as an investment banker to compete full-time.

A Philippine paper says it helps to have a short memory in bike racing, since everyone hits the pavement sooner or later.

Closer to home, the Redlands Bicycle Classic will move to May next year, serving as a domestic lead-in to the Amgen Tour of California.

And SoCal Cycling offers photos of Sunday’s Manhattan Beach Grand Prix.

………

Local

Air quality in the LA area is the deadliest in the nation. That alone should be enough to get LA and other local cities to provide safe alternatives to driving. But probably won’t.

CiclaValley reports the North Hollywood Metro tunnel will be opening Monday, with a promised Bike Hub to come.

Park La Brea News profiles Sunday’s Wilshire Blvd CicLAvia.

Long Beach celebrates the opening of the new parking protected bike lanes on Artesia Blvd, the first half-mile of what will eventually be a two-mile protected bikeway.

 

State

Cyclelicious examines why land use matters for bike advocacy, noting that people aren’t likely to bike to work if they can’t afford to live nearby.

KPCC looks at the increasing popularity of bike lanes in OC.

Don’t throw your bike at a trolley if they won’t let you on, a lesson a Laguna Beach man learned the hard way; he could face charges for vandalism, and probably needs a new bike after the trolley ran over it.

Salinas will host its fourth ciclovía in October, with a 1.6 mile route.

This time it’s firefighters with the big hearts, as Pleasanton firefighters pitch in to buy a man a new bicycle and helmet after his was damaged when he was hit by a car.

Sacramento authorities want people to walk, ride a bike or take transit when the new arena opens.

Sad news from NorCal, as a Redding bike rider was killed by a driver who allegedly ran a red light. Something many drivers insist only bike riders do.

 

National

An Oregon neo-Nazi covered with pro-Aryan and anti-police tatts fled on his bicycle when police tried to stop him for a traffic violation, eventually shooting a cop and taking a woman hostage; he suffered non-life threatening wounds when he was shot by police to end the siege.

Forget riding through crosswalks; Portland is installing cross bikes — no, not this kind — to help bike riders get through intersections safely.

The grizzly bear that killed a Montana mountain biker last June was nearly old enough to legally drink.

Caught on video: An Iowa bike rider is forced to bail off the road when a pickup coming in the opposite direction crosses onto the wrong side of the road, barely missing him.

Inflamed passions boil over in a dispute over a Detroit bike lane.

This is who we share the roads with. A Pennsylvania woman was caught on video, not just texting behind the wheel, but actually steering with her feet while she drove.

A South Carolina bike maker is bringing some manufacturing back to the US thanks to automation, even if the pay is less than the new minimum wage in Los Angeles.

An Atlanta bike advocate is working to get more black people on bicycles as the founder of the local chapter of Red Bike and Green.

Seriously, if your hat blows into the bay while riding your bike on a Florida causeway, just let the damn thing go.

 

International

Bike Radar offers tips on how to keep your saddle from being a pain in the butt, while Ella Cycling Tips offers advice on how women can choose the right one.

Forget the Olympics; Rio is also the site of the world’s largest Lego bicycle.

It’s not just the US where the bike theft epidemic is on the rise; it’s jumped 31% north of the border in just one year.

Calgary’s new bike lane network will hit one-million riders just a year after completion, a 40% jump in ridership. Yet one councilmember is underwhelmed, claiming it should have at least doubled — never mind that it came in $1.5 million under budget.

As if the Brit press didn’t have enough reasons to hate bike riders, now they accuse us of being deer killers. Seriously, don’t discard anything when you ride; jerseys have pockets for a reason.

A UK website says nothing beats a bike if you want to get more active.

A renowned pediatrician who made a “huge contribution to neonatal medicine in the UK” is mourned after he lost his life in a solo fall.

Amsterdam now has a special mayor devoted entirely to improving bicycling in the already bike-friendly city. Sometimes it seems like they’re just rubbing it in.

An Iranian town bans women from bicycling after the local iman says it violates the teachings of Islam, despite a national anti-pollution program encouraging everyone to ride their bikes every Tuesday.

 

Finally…

Evidently, if you’re riding in dark clothing at night, you need to take it all off. This is what you call a bike lane fail.

And don’t wrestle over dead goats without locking your bike up first.

 

Morning Links: Cop gets slap on wrist for beating bike rider, and road raging driver threatens CdM cyclist

Once again, the Los Angeles District Attorney let a cop accused of wrong doing off the hook.

And once again, it involved someone riding a bicycle.

The LA Times got wind of a plea deal reached earlier this year in the case of LAPD officer Richard Garcia, who was captured on security video beating and kicking a bike rider after he voluntarily surrendered and was already restrained by other officers.

Then-22-year old Clinton Alford Jr. was riding his bike on the sidewalk along Avalon Blvd in South LA when a police car pulled up behind him and ordered him to stop. According Alford, the officers failed to identify themselves, and fearing for his safety, he tried to get away, fleeing first by bike and then on foot.

After a brief pursuit, he stopped on his own and laid down on the ground, and was taken into custody without resistance.

That is, until an officer identified as Richard Garcia arrived on the scene, and immediately began beating and kicking Alford; one police official said he kicked the man’s head like he was kicking a field goal.

This is how the Times described the brutal attack.

The officer then dropped to the ground and delivered a series of strikes with his elbows to the back of Alford’s head and upper body, sources said. Alford’s head can be seen on the video hitting the pavement from the force of the strikes, two sources recounted. Afterward, the officer leaned his knee into the small of Alford’s back and, for a prolonged period, rocked or bounced with his body weight on Alford’s back, the sources said. At one point, the officer put his other knee on Alford’s neck, a source said.

Afterwards, several officers can reportedly be seen on the unreleased video carrying his limp body into a patrol car.

Yet despite that, and despite the determination by LAPD Chief Beck and the Police Commission that Garcia and another unnamed officer violated the department’s use of force policies, DA Jackie Lacey quietly negotiated a plea that lets Garcia off without a single day behind bars. Let alone the three years he faced if the case had gone to trial.

And possibly, without even a felony conviction.

Garcia pled no contest to felony assault in exchange for s sentence of community service and a paltry $500 fine to be paid an unnamed charity. After he completes the terms, he will be allowed to enter a new plea to a misdemeanor charge, which would replace the original conviction, and be placed on two years probation.

That’s it.

According to the Times, Lacey thinks that was a tough sentence.

Lacey said that she believed filing the felony charge against Garcia signaled to both police officers and residents that “people will be held accountable.”

“I do think it sends a strong message to any law enforcement officer who is thinking about violating the law,” she said. “If you talk to any officer about a felony on their record gotten in the course of their job, I don’t think anyone would see this as light at all.”

She’s right, it does send a strong message.

It tells every officer on the street that you can nearly kill a man for no valid reason, and walk away without even a felony conviction on your record.

Which is exactly the same message she sent in refusing to file charges against the LA County sheriff’s deputy who killed cyclist Milt Olin while typing on his onboard computer instead watching out for the man who was legally riding his bike in the bike lane on Mulholland Highway — just moments after the deputy texted his wife while driving, something that could have landed anyone else in jail.

And the same message she sent in refusing to indict the three Gardena police officers who killed an unarmed man who was simply trying to tell them they had stopped the wrong men after his brother’s bicycle was stolen, in a shooting captured on dashcam video.

Let’s be clear. Alford is no saint.

He was originally booked on possession and resisting arrest, charges that were quickly dropped when news of the beating came to light. And he faces new charges of pimping, rape and assault with a deadly weapon.

But even the worst criminal deserves protection from rogue cops who take the law into their own hands.

And from a DA who doesn’t seem to give a damn.

One time might be explainable. But three times is evidence of a pattern, and an apparent policy of refusing to hold even the worst police officers accountable for their actions.

Or maybe it’s just the people on bicycles she doesn’t like.

………

Unbelievable.

A cyclist in Corona del Mar receives a death threat from a road raging motorist who calls him a pussy and a queer, among many other things, and says he’s just lucky there are witnesses around. All because the rider had the audacity to ride his bicycle on the sharrows, exactly where he’s supposed to be.

They need to get this asshole off the streets before he kills someone. On purpose.

………

A Santa Monica writer notes that bike theft was up 30% in the city in 2015, and guesses that the trend has continued this year. And wonders if the Expo Line is to blame.

Never mind that the Expo Line didn’t even reach SaMo until May of this year.

………

The next time someone says bike riders don’t pay our share of the road because bikes aren’t registered, show them this.

CA DMV Where Money Goes

Only 13% of registration fees go to maintain the roads — and even that is just for state highways.

………

We have results from yesterday’s Olympic time trial, so skip to the next section if it’s still waiting in your viewing queue.

Fabian Cancellara caps his cycling career by capturing gold for Switzerland in the time trial, eight years after winning in Beijing; Tom Doumalin and Chris Froome finished second and third.

No Cinderella story on Wednesday, as cycling scion Taylor Phinney finishes 22nd, over five minutes behind the leaders, while Aussie Rohan Dennis had to settle for fifth after his handlebars broke. A Namibian cyclist takes pride in finishing dead last in the time trial after he entered the race at the last minute on a road bike because he didn’t have a time trial bike.

American Kristin Armstrong overcame age and a bloody nose to win her third consecutive gold medal in the women’s time trial on her final day as a 42-year old; dope-tainted Russian Olga Zabelinskaya took silver while Anna van der Breggen captured bronze. The Wall Street Journal calls Armstrong the comeback queen.

The US women’s pursuit team begins its pursuit of a gold medal today with new left-side drive Felt track bikes that promise to shave three seconds off their time.

The world’s top pro cycling teams have voted to boycott the time trial at October’s world championships in Qatar in a protest against cycling’s governing body.

………

Local

The LA2050 Challenge Grants are back for another year; applications are being accepted between September 6th and October 4th.

A Los Angeles triathlete’s bike was stolen while she was training with her team in Long Beach; her bike was missing when she came back from a swim. As of this writing, a gofundme account to replace it has raised $1895 of the $3,000 goal.

A French artist begins a two-month examination of the LA River by foot and bike for an art project based on the items he recovers.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports on the soft opening of West Hollywood’s new WeHo Pedals bikeshare. Although almost all of the planned docking stations are on the Santa Monica Blvd corridor, ignoring most north/south streets and the Sunset Strip.

Alhambra police ask if you know this bike-riding package thief. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Caltrans reports it has patched pavement along PCH; however, a Malibu Safety Commissioner says they should be held to a higher standard of surface integrity given the large number of bicycles on the roadway.

Friends remember Bill Bowers, the homeless bike rider fatally shot by sheriff’s deputies in Castaic last week; posters at the event call the shooting murder.

Save the date for Noche de los Luminarias, the Bike SGV Awards Night on November 10th.

 

State

Too little too late. Newport Beach decides to install four new stop signs between Newport Heights Elementary School and Newport Harbor High School following the death of eight-year old Brock McCann as he rode his bike home from school. There’s no reason to believe it would have prevented this tragedy, but maybe it will help prevent the next one.

Dozens of Encinitas streets could get bike lanes or sharrows, depending on the width of the street.

A San Diego man teams up with a cop in an unsuccessful effort to recover his stolen bike, though they did catch the suspected thief with a stolen truck and two other hot bikes. Note to ABC 10: $900 does not a pricey bike make.

A Ventura tow truck driver pled not guilty in the hit-and-run death of 14-year old bike rider Jonathan Hernandez earlier this year; he faces up to 40 months in prison if he’s convicted.

 

National

A mountain biker says the current ban on bikes in wilderness areas is based on nothing more than a few people who don’t like them, and risks dividing supporters of environmental protection of unspoiled areas.

Elly Blue says everyone benefits by looking past the stereotype of bicyclists as white guys in spandex to embrace the full bicycling community, regardless of color or sex, noting that people of color make up the fastest growing cycling demographic.

People for Bikes says businesses are finding creative ways to put bicycles to work.

When a beginning bike rider asks how far an “easy” ride really is, a Portland writer says a bike coach who recommends adding 10 miles per ride until you reach 80 miles can just fuck off.

A New Mexico teen is making a remarkable recovery, even if his dreams of becoming a pro cyclist ended on the bumper of a careless driver.

A Denver bike rider says the hit-and-run driver who ran him down did it on purpose.

The National Transportation Safety Board issues their preliminary report on the Kalamazoo massacre in which five cyclists were killed and four injured by a stoned driver, but doesn’t have much to add to the story. If this is just the first step in the NTSB finally dealing with bicycling and traffic safety, it’s a welcome one; if not, it should be.

Scientists at Columbia University are studying vehicle exhaust to determine its effects on bike riders.

A Pennsylvania county offers a $500 reward to catch whoever has been repeatedly tossing tacks on a popular bike trail. Note to Fox 43: A deliberate attempt to harm cyclists or their bikes may be many things, but a prank it’s not.

Philadelphia women say they’re forced to ride their bikes through red lights and stop signs to escape threats and sexual harassment. Seriously, everyone, regardless of gender, has the right to travel the streets safely and without fear.

 

International

A Canadian bike rider praised Vancouver’s bike lane network, but says most of the country’s bike lanes are a waste of space and money, with some amounting to little more than private roads for hip urbanites.

British cyclists crowdfund the private prosecution of a driver accused of killing a 70-year old bike rider; a writer says it’s not about persecuting the driver, but getting prosecutors to take bicycling deaths seriously. Too bad we can’t do that here.

Katy Perry is one of us, as she shows a little cheek riding in the French countryside.

Anime fans can look forward to the release of Yowamushi Pedal: Spare Bike next month, though you may have to go to Japan to see it.

CNN shares a cyclist’s perspective on Tokyo, courtesy of Byron Kidd, editor of Tokyo by Bike.

This is why you don’t lock up to living things. A Chinese bike thief is caught on video cutting down a tree to steal the bicycle chained to it.

 

Finally…

Your next helmet could be a headphone. Taking a virtual reality tour of the UK on a bike that doesn’t move is not the same as the real thing.

And if you want to illustrate the town’s new bike lanes, maybe the best way to do it isn’t with a photo of a salmon cyclist riding next to one, with a sidewalk cyclist visible in the background.

I’m just saying.

 

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