Tag Archive for Active SGV

Metro simplifies — and jacks up — fares, Pasadena unveils bike action plan update, and Halloween rides roll on Friday

Let’s start with a little non-bike news, although it could affect anyone with a multimodal commute.

Metro is hosting a virtual public hearing on November 14th to get community input on a proposed rate change to “simplify” transit rates.

Although it looks more like a rate increase from here.

The LA County transportation authority promises to eliminate daily, weekly and monthly passes, as well as transfers, replacing them with stored-value cards and fare caps.

Under the proposal, Metro’s basic fare will increase from the current $1.75 to $2, with a daily max of $6, and a weekly cap of $20.

While that will benefit people who make multiple trips in a single day, or over 12 trips each week, it will nearly double the cost for a typical two-way commute with a transfer in each direction, from the current $3.50 roundtrip fare to $6.

Which is exactly how I use Metro in most cases.

A single roundtrip with no transfers will increase slightly, from $3.50 to $4. Meanwhile, weekly costs will jump from the current $12.50 for a weekly pass to a max of $20, while the current $50 monthly pass will be replaced with a max of $80 for four weeks.

That doesn’t exactly sound like a good deal to me, but your mileage may vary.

And it’s definitely not the no-fare transit system Metro promised to study and report back on.

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ActiveSGV shares the update to Pasadena’s 2015 Bicycle Transportation Action Plan we discussed yesterday, which was rolled out at last night’s Municipal Services Committee meeting.

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It looks like an early kickoff to Halloween weekend, with a pair of spooky rides set to roll this Friday.

First up is ActiveSGV’s Halloween-themed ebike tour of Pasadena.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1584968380817473536

Meanwhile, the monthly LA Critical Mass rolls just an hour later for their annual Halloween ride.

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Now that’s more like it.

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

No bias here. A San Diego TV station insists a bike counter on a North Park bike lane is double-counting some bike riders, even though the city insists it’s been double-checked for accuracy while explaining that ridership naturally decreases in the fall when weather cools and school is back in session.

No bias here, either. In a story hidden behind a paywall, the Bay Area’s East Bay Times reports that the bike lane on the Richmond-San Raphael Bridge exacerbates pollution and congestion, directly contradicting a new study showing protected bike lanes have the opposite effect.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

Police throw the book at an Ohio man, who was arrested for obstructing official business, failure to disclose personal information and lack of bicycle signal devices after refusing to give his name when cops stopped him for riding without lights on his bike.

There’s a special place in hell for the New York man who rode his bicycle up to an 18-year old Hasidic man and punched the Jewish teen in the back of the head without warning.

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Local

Jennifer Hudson is one of us, riding her bicycle on the Warner Brothers lot, as the EGOT-winning actress, singer and talks how host is named Glamour’s Woman of the Year.

Long Beach is looking for volunteers for the city’s annual two-day bike count, scheduled for tomorrow and Saturday.

Los Angeles and Orange Counties are slated to share $295 million dollars in new state active transportation funding, including projects on Western Ave in South LA, Osbourne Street in Pacoima, and the LA River Greenway in the East San Fernando Valley.

 

State 

A Goleta incumbent says he hasn’t decided about plans for a lane reduction and bike lanes on the city’s Hollister Ave, while his challenger for a seat on the city council is strongly in favor of it, as well as expanding bike and pedestrian access throughout the city.

Tragic news from Kern County, where a 14-year old Tehachapi boy was killed as he was riding his bike on the sidewalk when a pickup driver failed to see him while exiting a driveway; a crowdfunding page has raised over $14,000 of the $20,000 goal to help pay his funeral expenses.

A San Francisco district supervisor was criticized for rolling back the area’s Slow Streets program after one senior citizen was killed and another injured by a speeding driver as they walked in the Sunset District.

 

National

A new four-part documentary series looks back to a ragtag cross-country bike ride, when a group of inexperienced teenagers set out to ride across the US on whatever bikes they could get their hands on.

US Transportation Secretary Pete says Elon Musk’s Hyperloop idea sounds “super interesting,” but Musk can pay for the damn thing himself. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

Flying Magazine recommends taking your bike with you if you’re flying your private plane into an airport near a rail trail, especially if you own a foldie.

Bellingham, Washington is removing parking spaces and installing bike lanes in a cynical effort to run off homeless people living in their vehicles.

Denver pauses its popular ebike rebate program for the remainder of the year, after burning through three years worth of the vouchers in the first six months.

After a Kansas City bike mechanic was injured in a hit-and-run, a crowdfunding campaign raised over $20,000 in just 24 hours to help him get back on his feet, easily topping the low $5,000 goal.

A weekly Houston Pride Ride returned to the streets for the first time since a 45-year-old father was killed by a hit-and-run driver after falling into the street two weeks ago.

A Boston TV station rushes to the aid of a woman who was charged for failing to return a bikeshare bike that wouldn’t register when she tried to dock it.

New York residents are taking out their anger over losing parking spaces for a new Forest Hills protected bike lane by blaming the K-rail dividers.

A 35-year old Florida woman was arrested on charges of hit-and-run causing death and tampering with physical evidence, four months after she allegedly crashed into the 56-year old victim as he was riding his bike home, knocking him off a bridge and into a river.

 

International

Road.cc looks at a handful of new products, including what they say may be the year’s best looking bike helmet, while Bike Biz offers a guide to the latest new bikes and accessories.

Audi claims their new vehicle-to-vehicle system is the secret to improving safety for people on bicycles — even if their massive SUVs are designed to kill anyone outside of a vehicle.

Horrible news from Wales, where a man claiming to be the area’s “the most accomplished car thief” faces an attempted murder charge for deliberately running down a man riding a bicycle, leaving the victim paralyzed from the waste down, in what appears to have started as some sort of grievance between the two,

A new funky looking Dutch ebike claims to be the world’s safest.

 

Competitive Cycling

Gear Junkie offers a brief tutorial on breakaways, pace lines and how to draft.

 

Finally…

A college writer suggests “No Bike Wednesdays” to give campus bike thieves a day off. Who says you can’t do a backflip on a cargo bike?

And that feeling when the city’s brilliant solution to a tree root breaking through a bike lane is…spray paint.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

De León: hell no, he won’t go; advocacy groups call for ebike libraries; and what happens when officials give a damn

Talk about misreading the room.

In an announcement that was almost universally condemned, CD14 City Councilmember Kevin de León says hell no, he won’t go.

De León is refusing to resign in the wake of a racist and otherwise offensive recording in which he was heard actively participating, along with outgoing CD1 Councilmember “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo, former Council President Nury Martinez and ex-LA County Federation of Labor Ron Herrera, the latter two of whom at least had the decency to resign.

His announcement was immediately condemned by newly elected Council President Paul Krekorian.

Yes, the same Krekorian who singlehandedly killed the fully funded and shovel ready lane reductions and protected bike lanes planned for Lankershim Blvd in one of his first official acts on the council.

Apparently thinking he can somehow survive this, de León said “I’m not going to mince words. I’m not going to deflect blame. I’m not going to defend the defenseless,” before attempting to do exactly that, adding he’ll be “spending the coming weeks and months personally asking for your forgiveness.”

Forgiveness that is not likely to be given, after failing to condemn Martinez’ open racism, while himself comparing fellow Councilmember Mike Bonin’s toddler son to the Luis Vuitton purse favored by Martinez.

Bonin is clearly in no mood for de León’s weakass mea culpa.

As we’ve noted before, this whole city hall soap opera matters, because we’re never going to get action on safer streets with dysfunctional city leadership, particularly with the council’s draft of the Healthy Streets LA initiative due back at the council in a few weeks.

Speaking of which, the LA Times has opened a web portal to help you find how to contact the right city agencies and officials to address various issues.

You know, in case you want to advocate for safer streets. Or complain about corrupt city officials.

Photo from Wikipedia

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And speaking of Bonin, Streets For All has posted video of Wednesday’s virtual Happy Hour with the outgoing councilmember.

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Yesterday we mentioned Metro’s confusing proposal to reform management of the Metro Bike bikeshare system.

The leaders of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, ActiveSGV and People for Mobility Justice teamed to release an open letter to the Metro board, suggesting that opening ebike libraries and investing in safer infrastructure might be a better approach.

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It looks like LADOT is finally getting serious about counting bikes, at least on 7th Street.

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This is what happens when city officials actually give a damn.

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CNN recognizes the Dutch city of Utrecht for the world bicycling capital it is.

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

An Ottawa, Canada mayoral candidate is politely taken to task after declaring he won’t declare a war on cars by investing bike lanes, preferring a “balanced approach” that’s balanced heavily in favor of motor vehicles.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A 70-year old Fresno man insists he’s the real victim after he lay in wait and repeatedly shot and stabbed a man he accused of stealing his bicycle; Edmundo Martinez faces 50 to life if he’s convicted of killing Jose Palafox, Jr. Once again, no bike is worth a human life.

A Phoenix man faces charges after he was captured on video circling a convenience store parking lot on his bike while aiming a gun at bystanders; the man bizarrely claimed there was someone hiding in a cooler at the store to justify his actions.

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Local

The next driver who tries to run you off the road may not be one, after Google’s Waymo announced plans to bring driverless taxis to the City of Angels.

Streets For All is calling for canvassing volunteers to help elect transit advocate — and corgi dad — Kenneth Mejia as Los Angeles City Controller.

Cycling Tips reviews the second-gen Cero One cycle truck-style e-cargo bike from Los Angeles-based Cero. And likes it. I’d get one myself, with the perfect upfront corgi carrier, if I had an extra three grand laying around.

 

State 

California is offering $50,000 rewards for each of four unsolved murders, including a 16-year old boy who was shot and killed while riding his bike in Alameda County.

Great idea. The League of Women Voters is hosting a Bike Out the Vote bike caravan in Albany this weekend. Although someone should tell them that Bike the Vote is a lot less confusing.

 

National

Momentum examines bike storage solutions to help keep your bikes safe and out of the way.

Bicycling wants to know what’s the weirdest animal you’ve ever had to dodge on a bike, after a video of two angry moose charging down an Alaska bike path goes viral. In my case, it was an alligator sunning itself on a Louisiana roadway. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

Bike Portland profiles an adventurous leather goods peddler, who pedals a bike trailer with his merchandise to a local outdoor market every weekend.

Life is cheap in Houston, where an eight-year old boy riding a bike is dead because a driver insisted on distractedly making a left turn while she was “messing with her sandwich;” a month later, charges still have not been filed.

Kindhearted Michigan sheriff’s deputies dipped into their own funds to buy a 13-year old boy a new bike after he was struck by a driver, trashing his bike and leaving him with 100 stitches in his leg.

Travel site Condé Nast recommends the best bike routes to explore New York’s five boroughs.

A Virginia woman tells drivers that rushing is never worth the risk, after her daughter was killed and another woman seriously injured by an 18-year old drunk driver as they rode their bikes.

 

International

A British Columbia letter writer offers a brief tutorial on the differences between pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists, stressing that the latter might kill the first two, but the first two never kill the latter, and that separate infrastructure is the only solution to keep everyone safe.

An Indian college student faces charges for the high speed crash that killed one bike rider, before swerving onto the other side of the road and killing another.

A handmade Namibian bike brand made its international debut at the recent Bespoke bike show in London; the steel-frame Onguza bikes made by Dan Craven, a two-time Olympic road cyclist and Namibia’s only professional cyclist to ride a Grand Tour, retail for four grand for a frame, and double that for a complete bike.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former Vuelta and world champ Alejandro Valverde called it a career after rolling across the Il Lombardia finish line one last time.

 

Finally…

No, no seat tube doesn’t mean you have to ride standing up. Introducing an ebike roadie for weight weenies.

And can you really say you ride a bike if you don’t know how to pop a proper wheelie?

 

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Bike-friendly Bonin likely to face recall, opinions wanted on SGV ebikes, and kindhearted people still exist

Westside Councilmember Mike Bonin could be looking at a recall, just weeks before next year’s election.

Recall supporters have submitted nearly 12,000 more signatures for validation than the required 27,317 to qualify for the ballot.

Which means he could be recalled from office in May, then returned to office the next month, when the larger turnout in the previously scheduled primary election is likely to be more favorable to him than a single-issue recall ballot.

But at least this issue isn’t Bonin’s support for bike lanes this time, unlike the last time opponents tried to recall him.

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels.

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If you live in the San Gabriel Valley, Active SGV needs your thoughts on ebikes.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1460340843668119554

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A reminder that there are still kind people in the world, regardless of how they travel.

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Sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A man is suing a Boca Raton resort after he was injured when a parking gate closed on him as he was riding a bicycle underneath it, claiming no one ever told him he shouldn’t do that.

Seriously, don’t draft women riders you don’t know on bike paths. Or anywhere else, for that matter.

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Local

WeHoVille looks at the proposal to install peak hour bus lanes on La Brea Ave, including the brief three-block segment that runs through West Hollywood. Bike riders are allowed to use bus lanes in Los Angeles, though I’m not sure if the same rules would apply in WeHo.

 

State

CityLab reports several American cities, including Oakland and Bakersfield, are experimenting with universal basic mobility programs that subsidize transit, bikeshare and scooters; Los Angeles may follow with a pilot program in South LA.

The Cal Berkeley student newspaper calls on students to get involved in plans to reimagine Telegraph Avenue in the city to prioritize buses, pedestrians and bikes.

 

National

Governing says the transformational new infrastructure bill Biden signed yesterday may not be so transformational after all, since most of the funds go towards highways and maintaining the carbon-intensive status quo. The site also reports UCLA parking meister Donald Shoup is winning the parking war, as more cities recognize the high cost of free parking and reduce or eliminate parking requirements.

Women’s Health picks the best balance bikes for your toddler.

A Denver bike shop is asking local riders to keep an eye out for some hot bikes, after thieves broke in and stole five display models and a couple of test bikes.

Some Texas bike riders have reportedly taken to carrying guns on their bikes for protection from “entitled, enraged” drivers. I had a friend in Louisiana who strapped a .22 to his handlebars for exactly the same reason, and reported drivers showed him a lot more courtesy on the roads afterwards. 

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list. The Arkansas High Country Route offers 1,200 miles of gravel and paved rural roads, with a total 80,000 feet of climbing through the Buffalo National River corridor, Arkansas River Valley, and the Ozark and Ouachita mountains.

New York State changed the law two years ago to allow people on bikes to use leading pedestrian intervals to get a safe head start on traffic, but someone apparently neglected to tell one NYPD traffic cop, who continues to illegally ticket riders obeying the law.

The fun is over at a secret scofflaw BMX track in Virginia Beach VA that had survived under the radar for over 20 years, after the owner of the land sold it to a developer to build a car dealership.

 

International

A new study delivered to the COP26 climate conference shows that at least 40% of city dwellers worldwide will need to walk, bike or use transit by 2030 if the earth is going to avoid the worst effects of climate change.

A local couple is renting ebikes to help tourists take advantage of the 40-mile bike trail network connecting the Mexican resort cities of Ixtapa and Zihuatanejo.

A pair of Edinburgh bike thieves were caught on camera tossing bikes over a tall fence to make their getaway.

More British companies are using cargo bikes to make deliveries to avoid traffic congestion and parking problems, including a London flower shop that replaced its delivery vans with Dutch-made ebikes capable of carrying up to 45 boxes of flowers at a time.

A Welsh man will spend the next six years behind bars after leaving a party “severely drunk” and plowing into a young father riding his bike, while driving over twice the speed limit; the man fled the scene, but returned an hour later pretending to be a friend of the victim, before turning himself in the next day after he sobered up.

No surprise that someone in the Netherlands is one of us, although the coach of the country’s national team may want to be more careful putting his bike up next time, after falling and breaking his hip.

A Lithuanian city halted work on a new cycle track through a forest where Jews were murdered and buried by the Nazis in WWII, after the country’s Chief Rabbi justifiably criticized the plans.

An Aussie driver was speeding, driving erratically, and high on crystal meth, amphetamines and cannabis when he ran down a bicycling grandmother last year, then abandoned his car and screaming passengers to flee the scene on foot. But swears he doesn’t remember it because he was sleeping at the time of the crash, and only fled because he panicked.

 

Competitive Cycling

Good news from the French Riviera, where 2018 Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas got his stolen Pinarello back just three hours after it was taken, thanks to the quick action of the local gendarmes.

Cycling News looks at the top names retiring from the peloton this year, including Tony Martin, André Greipel and Tejay van Garderen.

 

Finally…

Lux brand icon Stella McCartney designed some new bikes, but good luck getting one. A viral photo of a bed attached to a bicycle is about 80 years too recent to be a photo of the first ambulance.

And that feeling when your bike-wheeled dinosaur goes missing, but somehow comes back

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

Morning Links: A conservative laughs at traffic violence, upcoming bike rides, and AI won’t replace bike writers yet

Evidently, conservatives are expected to be totally cool with people needlessly dying on our streets.

At least according to a writer for the National Review.

He — and of course it’s a he — takes issue with Elizabeth Warren’s tweet decrying traffic violence on last Sunday’s World Day of Remembrance for Traffic Crash Victims.

“Traffic violence” is quite a phrase. In the end, it may be all that anyone remembers of Warren’s decreasingly persuasive but increasingly eccentric campaign. In this bold new framing, cars are not the principal way Americans get around, with fatalities being an unfortunate but blessedly rare occurrence (one per 100,000,000 vehicle miles traveled, a rate that is down more than 80 percent in my lifetime). No, to Warren, cars are instruments of violence like, I don’t know, nunchucks or fuel-injected guillotines, and so she issues her clarion tweet to #EndTrafficViolence. So, right now, November 18, 2019, “it’s time” for us to zero out deaths from cars? How? On what planet?

He concludes with this brilliant observation.

Down here in America, where almost nobody has ever doubted that the benefits of motorized transportation have more than justified the various costs, even when the chance of getting killed in a car was 20 times higher than it is today, I’d say cars have a much brighter future than Elizabeth Warren’s White House bid.

Never mind that an estimated 36,750 lost their lives on American roadways last year. And that traffic deaths are going up for anyone not safely ensconced in a few tons of glass and steel, surrounded by numerous safety devices not afforded to the rest of us.

Or that countless Americans, and a number of American cities, are working to bring that death toll down to zero.

And the future of automobiles is in question, thanks to rising traffic congestion, inefficiency and climate change.

So I hope he enjoyed his laugh at Warren’s expense. And pray that no one he loves loses their life to traffic violence.

Or anyone else, for that matter.

Meanwhile, City Lab looks at the progress, or lack thereof, for several major cities who were early Vision Zero adapters.

Including Los Angeles, which continues to set the standard for lack of progress.

Photo by Netto Figueiredo from Pixabay.

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Active SGV is going to be busy this weekend, with a ride to the first holiday event of the season.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1197611136914464772

That will be followed with a ride to examine proposed South Pas bike parking tomorrow.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1197557870847389697

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The next Metro BEST ride will roll to CSUN two weeks from tomorrow.

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Robert Leone forwards word that this week’s closure of San Diego’s Rose Canyon Bike Path was postponed due the Wednesday’s rain.

Due to forecasted inclement weather conditions this week, the full closure of the Rose Canyon Bike Path originally scheduled for Tuesday, November 19, has been postponed and rescheduled for December. The path will remain open this week. The rescheduled closures are anticipated as follows:

Beginning Tuesday, December 3, there will be a temporary full closure of the Rose Canyon Bike Path as crews pave the final section of the newly constructed permanent bike path. The full closure will begin at 6 a.m. on Tuesday, December 3, and will be in place for approximately four days.

More information is on the mid-coast website, click here. During the closure, and as was planned prior, Mid-Coast Trolley crews will facilitate a “bus bridge,” which will include bicycle-carrying capable vans, to transport cyclists and pedestrians around the closure area. Signage will be in place to direct cyclists. The bike path is anticipated to reopen by 6 p.m. on Friday, December 6. As always, we appreciate your patience! Thank you.

My apologies for the late notice, after I lost his email for a few days.

Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

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Maybe Artificial Intelligence isn’t going to replace bike racing scribes anytime soon, after all.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is never-ending.

A Cleveland teenager faces charges for punching a bike rider in the head and knocking him cold, in an apparently random attack.

Sometimes it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

Tacoma WA police are looking for the bike-riding bandit who needlessly blew off a carjacking victim’s foot with a double-barelled shotgun after he had already given up his car.

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Local

No news is good news, right?

 

State

San Diego approves new regulations shutting down dockless bikes and scooters after midnight.

Palm Springs police have released a description of the suspect vehicle in last month’s hit-and-run that took the life of Raymundo “Ray-Ray” Jaime as he was riding his bike; police are looking for a 2008-2012 dark-colored Chevrolet Malibu with likely front-end damage. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

Congratulations to San Luis Obispo for their new status as a gold level Bicycle Friendly Community.

Sad news from San Jose, where a bike rider was left to die alone in the street by a heartless hit-and-run driver.

Speaking of San Jose, the city shows Los Angeles how it’s done, installing ten miles of quick-build protected bike over the past year for just $1.5 million.

Not only is San Francisco’s new transportation boss one of us, he’s an advocate for increased density, opposes free parking and parking minimums, and prefers automated buses over self-driving cars.

That didn’t take long. Just weeks after the Trump administration approved a policy allowing ebikes on government trails, equestrians have filed suit to block e-mountain bikes from the Tahoe National Forest.

 

National

The Smithsonian takes a long look back, comparing the resistance to e-scooters to the backlash over the first bicycles.

Bicycling recommends the best men’s and women’s bike shoes. Personally, I’m holding out for a good pair of cleated wingtips. Or maybe cowboy boots.

Action cam maker GoPro is finally returning to its roots, after its attempts to diversity crashed faster than its failed drones.

Five bike-friendly bars for your next trip to Tucson. You’re welcome.

Utah police literally ran down a woman suspected of riding a stolen bicycle, dragging her 40 feet beneath the patrol car; remarkably, she didn’t suffer any major injuries, despite ending up pinned beneath the car with her ankle behind her ear. The cops swear it was just an oopsie, even though the officer behind the wheel is no longer with the department.

Denver’s docked bikeshare service is pulling the plug on the system in January. Or maybe not, if they can get a new vendor.

A Missouri letter writer says the law should be changed to ban bikes on highways after dark. Or you could just, bear with me here, slow and pay more attention when you drive at night. And lower the damn speed limits while you’re at it. 

Wisconsin ebike riders aren’t breaking the law anymore, after the governor signed a bill legalizing them.

No bias here. After a Minneapolis bike rider was fatally right hooked by a truck driver, police say he was the one who struck the truck. Note to WCCO-4 — If police are blaming the victim for striking the truck, it’s a pretty good indication they don’t think the victim was stopped.

This is who we share the roads with. Country music star Sam Hunt was busted for driving salmon in Nashville with a BAC over twice the legal limit. And I’m not crazy about his music, either.

A Massachusetts woman goes to Germany with her family, and discovers bicycling is the go-to mode for running everyday errands.

There’s a special place in hell for the New York State condo board that ordered a four-year old boy to stop riding his tricycle in the complex. Never mind that the kid is the only Latino child in the development.

Bighearted New Jersey bike riders will ride eleven miles to donate frozen turkeys to a community food bank for people struggling with hunger.

A 1.4-mile multi-modal trail is connecting Baltimore neighborhoods for the first time since they were severed by a highway project.

Just months after Atlanta stiffened fines for drivers who park in bike lanes, they’re letting offenders get off the hook with a parking scofflaw diversion program.

A kindhearted deputy bought a new bicycle to replace a 12-year old Florida boy’s stolen bike, after noticing he’d stopped riding it to school.

A grieving letter writer calls on Florida to place protective barriers between roadways and bike lanes to prevent more needless deaths like her heartbroken daughter’s fiancé, who was killed last week by a hit-and-run driver while doing everything right.

 

International

How to live a vegan lifestyle without adversely affecting your bicycling.

Nothing like a four-wheeled, $19,000, fully enclosed, ped-assist ebike to keep out of the rain. Or you could just save around $18,900 and buy some decent rain gear, without looking quite so ridiculous.

Popular Mechanics — yes, it’s still around — explains how a Mexican engineering student turned a personal project into a handmade bamboo bike company, combining his passions for bicycling and sustainable living.

An Ontario, Canada website explains how installing safe bike lanes improves safety for everyone else on the road, too. As well as making the community healthier and more prosperous.

The founder of Britain’s Black Cyclists Network says his recent run-in with police — where he was ordered to move his bike to an unsafe spot, then stopped and searched because he allegedly “smelled like marijuana” — says a lot about how the general public views bicyclists.

 

Competitive Cycling

Life is cheap in Australia, where the driver who killed 23-year old rising pro cyclist Jason Lowndes just moments after texting her boyfriend walked with a lousy $2,000 fine — just $1,357 US — and community service.

 

Finally…

Seriously, every town needs a puppet bike. If you’re going to burglarize a business, don’t make the media make fun of you.

And if you never know when you’re going to need a lampshade.

Even on your wedding day.

Got married last year. Best way to get her to the altar! from bicycling

 

Morning Links: Charges increased in Frederick “Woon” Frazier death, and WeHo drag queen run down on purpose

Maybe there will be justice for Woon after all.

I received the following email from an anonymous correspondent at yesterday’s scheduled prelim for Mariah Kandise Banks, charged with the hit-and-run death of Frederick “Woon” Frazier and the attempted coverup that followed.

The People have filed an amended complaint against Ms. Banks in which the charge of misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence has been upgraded to felony.

Judge Lynne Hobbs thanked Ms. Banks for being on time this morning. Alas, the prelim was trailed yet again.

The judge inquired about the prosecution’s previous request for an increase in bail due to the accused’s alleged harassment of the victim’s family (and frankly, she seemed willing and prepared to grant it). The prosecutor stated that she had spoken to the victim’s family two days ago and had received no further reports of harassment, so the bail stands as-is.

Ms. Banks was her usual muttery self as she exited the courtroom.

The increased charges mean Banks now faces six years for felony vehicular manslaughter, rather than one year for the misdemeanor count.

That’s in addition to a possible four years for felony hit-and-run.

However, it’s unlikely she’ll serve anywhere near that. The LA district attorney’s office has a well-deserved reputation for bargaining charges down to avoid a trial.

If Banks is smart, she’ll drop the attitude and cop a plea. And maybe get out in a couple years, rather than risk serving the full dime behind bars.

Photo of Frederick “Woon” Frazier taken from his original crowdfunding page.

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This is who we share the road with.

A popular West Hollywood drag queen says a driver fled the scene after apparently running him down on purpose as he was leaving a bar with friends two weeks ago.

The victim, Sasha Markgraf, says he was the only member of the group dressed in an effeminate manner.

In addition to being a drag performer and singer, Markgraf is also a costume designer. When he left the bar with his friends to cross Larrabee Street after 2 a.m. he was wearing high heels and suspects the driver may have intentionally hit him.

“It’s sad to say but I think he was coming straight for us. He didn’t have to go right. He didn’t have to veer to the right,” Markgraf says.

A crowdfunding page says the driver turned on his car as Markgraf stepped off the curb and revved his engine before plowing into him. So far, it’s raised just $2,100 of the $50,000 goal.

Unfortunately, the only description of the car is a silver Honda Civic. There’s no description available for the driver.

Lets hope they catch this jerk before he or she tries to kill someone else.

And maybe succeeds next time.

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Another crowdfunding page is raising money to buy a new bike for an Active SGV staff member whose bike was stolen, along with her panniers, wallet and clothes, at last Sunday’s CicLAvia.

So far it’s raised nearly $300 of the modest $500 goal.

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There’s no shortage of bighearted people in today’s news.

When the bike a Salem, Oregon man used as his primary form of transportation was stolen, his friends in the trading card community pitched in to buy him a new one.

The bike an Ohio man used as transpiration for himself and his one-year old daughter was stolen just two days into his new job, so his Walmart coworkers dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike and trailer for someone they barely knew, and most had never met.

A Pennsylvania man rode his bike across the US, raising $11,000 for a pair of small-town animal rescues.

Great piece about a British Columbia bike shop owner and inventor who earned the Lanterne Rouge in the 1955 Tour de France, joining another rider as the first British cyclists to finish the tour; after moving to Canada, he built the wheelchair used on an around-the-world journey, as well as refurbishing bicycles to give to those in need. Sadly, he died of cancer on Saturday.

Then again, some people would rather help themselves. After a thief stole the bicycle a nine-year old English boy got for his birthday, he set out to do odd jobs around town until he earned enough to buy a new one.

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Local

As we noted yesterday, LADOT is looking for volunteers for the city’s first-ever official bike and pedestrian count later this month, as well as using traffic cameras for part of the count. Volunteers are needed to count bicycles in Long Beach, too.

A pair of LA Times readers shake a metaphorical fist at the paper for celebrating the death of the High Desert Corridor through the Antelope Valley.

 

State

67-year old San Diego man was rear-ended on his bike in broad daylight, suffering what was described as a non-life-threatening brain bleed. A witness said he “came out of nowhere,” which is just another way of saying you weren’t paying attention.

The student newspaper at San Diego State University says the school made a bad decision in banning e-scooters and other micromobility devices, based on bad data and with little student input.

A Santa Barbara man was critically injured when he was hit head-on rounding a curve after allegedly drifting onto the wrong side of the road; fortunately, he’s expected to make a full recovery.

 

National

Bicycling hosts a debate on whether someone on a bicycle is a cyclist or a biker. Apparently, a person riding a bicycle wasn’t an option.

A medical columnist says if you really want to avoid pain when you ride, hie thee to a bike fitter. Though he might not have phrased it quite that way.

A Hawaiian advocacy group will host a Noodle Ride, with participants using pool noodles to call attention to the three-foot passing law.

Seriously? An Oregon letter-writer says she’s fine with one bike lane, but why do bicyclists need one going the opposite direction on the other side of the street, as well?

Albuquerque paramedics are using bicycles to get through the crowds at the city’s annual hot air balloon festival.

Good advice. After surviving a serious collision while riding her bike, a Boulder CO woman says you should take published reports in the media with a massive grain of salt. Like this one, for instance.

A Houston man is dead after a cop driving at high speed — and without lights and sirens — slammed into him in a crash caught on dashboard video from a car parked nearby. In a tragic irony, the city launched a prescheduled campaign just hours later, calling on drivers to watch out for vulnerable road users.

A writer for Streetsblog Chicago says he’s willing to bury the hatchet after a city alderman backs down on his threat to ban bikes from the Riverwalk. But he wants those illegal Bicycles Must Be Walked signs taken down.

A Minnesota man just finished riding every public street in his county

A Pittsburgh man is making his third official attempt to set a new handcycle 24-hour record. The paraplegic athlete set an unofficial record of 407.7 miles in 2016, breaking the existing record of 403.8; however, the track wasn’t certified by the Guinness Book of World Records, so it didn’t count.

Life is cheap in Pennsylvania, where a 73-year old woman was killed in a left cross collision, and the driver walked with a lousy traffic ticket. There’s something seriously wrong when needlessly taking the life of another person amounts to nothing more than a simple traffic violation.

 

International

Cycling Tips says a British Columbia bikemaker is setting a new standard for environmental sustainability in the bicycle industry.

Heartbreaking story from Hamilton, Ontario, where a 14-year old boy was stabbed to death by a pair of brothers as his mother watched, after he had confronted the other boys for allegedly stealing his bicycle.

Life is cheap in Wales, too, where a woman got off with just 27 months behind bars for drunkenly driving “like a maniac” and plowing into four members of a family out for a bike ride, then fleeing the scene; one of her victims was lucky to survive. So naturally, she blamed the entire thing on her boyfriend.

A British truck driver was convicted of careless driving in the death of a bike-riding doctorhis view was obstructed by a dashboard tray full of ornaments and other items.

In news for my fellow diabetics, a new Australian study shows that while diabetics are prone to heatstroke, you can reduce your risk by training in the heat for a week in advance.

 

Competitive Cycling

Baltimore will host a one-day ProSeries race — one rung below the WorldTour — for the next three years.

Cycling’s governing body says it’s going to work with riders to improve safety in time for next year’s cycling season. If they really want to improve safety, they’ll get team cars and race motorcycles out of the peloton, and require riders to wait until someone can catch up for assistance.

 

Finally…

Nothing like circus friends to borrow a bike from. Apparently, there’s no bike lane that can’t be turned into a parking lot.

And nothing like turning a Santa Clarita bike path into your personal brass knuckle fight club.

 

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