Tag Archive for 405 Freeway

Russian soldier faces war crimes trial for killing bike rider, drivers behaving badly, and Metro releases draft 405 corridor plan

Ukraine announced plans to try a 21-year old Russian soldier for war crimes, for killing a 62-year old civilian walking his bicycle just feet from his home.

He reportedly was ordered to shoot the man as a group of Russian soldiers were fleeing a Ukrainian counterattack in a commandeered car during the first days of the war, so the victim couldn’t report their location to Ukrainian forces.

According to The Washington Post,

The prosecutor’s office said that Ukrainian investigators collected evidence of the soldier’s involvement, finding him “in violation of the laws and customs of war combined with premeditated murder,” and that the crime can carry a penalty of 10 to 15 years or life in prison. The statement did not provide details on the nature of the evidence or how the Russian soldier ended up in Ukrainian custody.

He is the first Russian soldier to be charged with a war crime while in Ukrainian custody, though ten soldiers were charged in absentia last month for the torture and mutilation of civilians in Bucha.

Ukraine reports evidence of more than 10,000 alleged war crimes committed by Russian forces, with 5,000 open investigations.

He faces 10 to 15 years if he’s convicted.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Photo by Matti from Pexels

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On a related subject, our anonymous courtroom correspondent writes in with a few observations, including turning heads with her two-wheeled support of the country under attack by Russian forces.

I’ve been flying a little (12″x18″) Ukrainian flag on my rear bike basket for a couple months now but constantly reconsider because whoo boy does it attract the honking.

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Remember Santa Barbara’s intention to designate In-N-Out a nuisance due to the traffic it attracts? Santa Ana just plans it into the street. Those pesky cyclists are never in the way of hungry drivers turning, or just waiting on the roadway to turn!

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In the latest edition of Motorists Behaving Badly:

Last week at the Pasadena DMV, a driver hit a DMV examiner, and then (sigh) backed up into a parked vehicle. This was an already licensed motorist, btw. Somehow.

Meanwhile, in Orange County the same night, a speeding driver smashed into a house on Newport Blvd…and then caught fire. The road road here has the CMUTC’s minimum-width bike lanes, and a (maximum) speed limit of 50mph. County officials remain confused as to how a collision possibly could’ve happened.

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Metro is looking for public comments on their draft comprehensive multimodal corridor plan for LA County’s I-405 Corridor 

Meanwhile, Streets For All is calling for everyone to tell Metro to stop wasting billions on freeway widening projects that only create more induced demand.

The agency’s new draft budget increases freeway spending 33%, on top of last years massive 80% boost.

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Michael Wagner, author of CLR Effect, corrects yesterday’s item saying there’s no Ride of Silence planned for Los Angeles County this Wednesday.

He notes that The Cycling Connection in Rancho Cucamonga will host a Ride of Silence as part of the international movement to honor fallen bike riders and other victims of traffic violent.

There will also be a daytime Ride of Silence on Saturday at the Rose Bowl.

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As former New York DOT Commissioner Janet Sadik-Khan wrote, first they’ll fight it, then they’ll fight to keep it.

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Grist offers an explainer on the deadly 85th Percentile Law, using LA’s deadly Zelzah Ave as a case in point.

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No argument here.

Although we may never know how that feels.

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

No bias here. Britain’s Express newspaper asked its readers if “cyclists should own the road or should drivers have priority?” And got exactly the responses you’d expect by wording it that way.

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Local

The Los Angeles Times continued their string of endorsements of progressive candidates for city council, recommending civil rights attorney Erin Darling to replace outgoing Mike Bonin in the Westside’s CD11. Darling also earned my endorsement a few weeks ago for his support of safe, livable streets.

LAist offers a detailed voters guide to the upcoming June primary election.

Join a family friendly ride with Walk Bike Glendale and Glendale Mayor Ardy Kassakhian this Saturday.

 

State 

Berkeley approves a new mile-long protected bike lane on Hopkins Street, despite the usual panic over removing parking spaces.

San Francisco moves to ban racially biased pretext traffic stops, preventing police from stopping people for minor traffic infractions such as broken tail lights, jaywalking, or tinted windows.

Streetsblog talks with the new executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.

 

National

Cycling Weekly profiles the young women who will ride this year’s 950-mile Remember the Removal Bike Ride, retracing the route taken by their Cherokee ancestors during the infamous Trail of Tears; over a quarter of the 16,000 members of the Cherokee Nation ordered out of their ancestral lands by the US government died of starvation, disease or exposure during the forced march.

L’Étape by Tour de France promises to bring the full Tour experience to Las Vegas next year, with a new 25 mile, 50 mile and 75 mile fondo through Sin City. But will there be someone dressed as the devil to chase you?

Hats off to Salt Lake City, where the city council voted unanimously that 20 is plenty, reducing speeds on 70% of the city’s streets to 20 mph. Meanwhile, the city is forming a task force to fight road rage, and boosting spending on traffic safety to combat a jump in pedestrian deaths.

Aspen, Colorado is moving towards requiring ebike renters to watch a bike safety video before they’re allowed on local trails.

One more example of keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late. A Davenport, Iowa man was sentenced to a whopping 55 years behind bars for the drunken hit-and-run death of a man riding a bicycle, after driving aggressively and running multiple red lights; it was his third DUI offense. Although even I think that sentence might be just a tad extreme.

A Rhode Island op-ed says it’s both the best and worst of times for the state’s bicyclists, as they mark Bike Month while a hostile DOT has stalled any progress.

Authorities in New Jersey’s Hudson County are standing in the way of the area’s first bike lane, preferring parking over the safety of people on bicycles.

 

International

Cyclist explains the mechanics that make an ebike tick. Meanwhile, a writer for the magazine says she crashed her bike for the first time in years, and learned…nothing.

Kingston, Ontario voted to eliminate parking minimums, replacing them with maximum limits on parking spaces for commercial and residential buildings, as well as requiring parking for bicycles, e-scooters and shared vehicles.

A Toronto website offers tips on how to maximize your speed crossing the city on two wheels.

A former Antigua national cycling champ is fighting for his life after a driver claims he was at the wheel when he ran down four bicyclists training for a weekend race, which was cancelled in the wake of the crash; another victim says the collision has left him mentally struggling.

Evidently they know something we don’t. As American road deaths climb to levels rivaling the bad old days, European traffic fatalities continue to drop, declining 17% in 2020 to continue a nearly 20-year trend.

 

Competitive Cycling

Frenchman Arnaud Démare won a mass sprint for the finish line in Wednesday’s 5th stage of the Giro, while 2nd place finisher Fernando Gaviria risked a sponsorship blowup by blaming his “shit” bike for the loss.

 

Finally…

We might have to deal with angry LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to confront rogue bulls on the loose. Now you, too, can own a home just off the Marvin Braude bike trail in Santa Monica for a mere 13 million bucks.

And let’s finish today with a peppy ode to new bike day. Which may be my new favorite song for the summer.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Man killed riding bicycle on 405 Freeway in Long Beach; fifth Long Beach bike death this year

Once again, someone has been killed trying to ride a bicycle on a Southern California freeway.

According to the Long Beach Post, a 39-year old man was riding a bicycle in the auxiliary lane of the northbound 405 Freeway in Long Beach around 10 pm on Friday.

As he approached Woodruff Ave, he was struck by a car driven by an 83-year-old Long Beach man.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Long Beach Report explains that the auxiliary lane is added to a freeway to allow drivers to speed up or slow down to get on or off.

There’s no word on why the victim was riding on a limited-access highway where bicycles are prohibited, and the driver would have no reason to expect one. And no word on whether the victim had lights on his bike, although the freeway itself should have been lighted.

This is at least the 50th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 22nd that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County. It’s also the fifth bicyclist killed in Long Beach this year.

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

 

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