Just 321 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we face walking and biking on the mean streets of LA.
Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can. Just over 70 signatures to go to reach 1,000!
I have no memory of the impact, but I was told by the park ranger on scene that witnesses had watched a car with two young men inside intentionally swerve into the bike lane and ram me from behind, throwing me over the handlebars into the street, and then laughing as they sped away.
We’ve seen similar stories coming from all over the world — as near as Huntington Beach and Las Vegas, and as far as Australia — of young men deliberately running down people on bicycles, usually while driving stolen cars.
Yet no one seems to be connecting the dots here, despite with rumors circulating of a hit-and-run challenge targeting bicyclists.
Meanwhile, another letter on the same Times link asks a “bike enthusiast” to explain why an Eagle Rock bike rider would be riding against traffic on the sidewalk, right next to the painted bike lanes on Colorado Blvd.
When there was a large gap, I checked again for pedestrians, and started to move forward. Out of nowhere, here comes a bike rider, on the sidewalk, coming from my right against the traffic flow. I came within millimeters of knocking him down.
I have seen many cyclists use the bike lanes correctly, but I have also seen them riding in groups so that they overflow the bike lanes into traffic. I’ve seen them at night with no reflective gear on.
Let’s start with the idea that the rider came “out of nowhere.”
Bikes are allowed on the sidewalk in Los Angeles, and drivers have a responsibility to look both ways. That includes looking for anyone walking or biking on the sidewalk, which is bi-directional — meaning there is no right direction, and people are entitled to travel in either direction.
Even people on bicycles.
Secondly, there is no requirement to ride in the street, even if it has a bike lane.
It’s possible that riding with traffic on the opposite side of the street may have been inconvenient if the rider was heading to or leaving a business or residence on the near side of the street, or connecting to a street on that side.
Or they may have just been uncomfortable riding on a busy street with nothing more than a thin strip of paint for protection.
And it’s odd that drivers can accept illegal, dangerous and otherwise bizarre behavior from other drivers, but somehow can’t comprehend when someone on a bicycle does something similar.
People are people, regardless of how they choose to travel. And people will inevitably do what’s most convenient, or which seems to make sense at the time.
So maybe it’s time to lighten up when someone on a bicycle acts like a human being.
Meanwhile, GCN examines just what we do that manages to piss drivers off so much.
Sadly, the ghost bike for fallen bicyclist and Hollywood producer Bob George has been removed already, his memory erased from a town that forgets too easily.
The Bob George memorial #GhostBike on Edgemont St and Fountain Ave installed November 9 after the fatal dooring on 10/17/2023 is no longer there. The plaque remains though. #EastHollywood #BikeLA @StreetsblogLA @bikinginla @ayogist pic.twitter.com/8uFqm1Ao2H
— Elson Trinidad (@elsontrinidad) February 14, 2024
A new report from personal injury law firm Bader Scott analyzed data the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, aka NHTSA, to determine the nation’s most dangerous counties for bicyclists.
California was also represented near the top, with San Joaquin County ranking eight, and Stanislaus County 15th. (Hint: Stop the page from loading to get around the paper’s paywall.)
Surprisingly, no SoCal county ranked in the top 20. Although it would be interesting to see what the rest of the list looks like.
There’s still time to reserve your spot in next weekend’s L.A. Chinatown Firecracker Bike Ride celebrating the upcoming Lunar New Year, Year of the Dragon.
Here’s how a recent press release described the event.
The 46th Annual L.A. Chinatown Firecracker 5K/10K Run/1K Kiddie & PAW’er Dog Run/Walk & 20/50-Mile Bike Ride – which will be held over the weekend of February 24-25, 2024, where thousands will take to the streets and where the events start and end, as well as a free to the public post-event festival at the historic Los Angeles Chinatown Plaza (Event Festival until 3pm on Saturday as well as a Lantern Paw Festival in Blossom Plaza from 11am-4pm in conjunction with Saturday’s Paw’er Dog Walk, and on Sunday, the Firecracker event festival goes until noon).
In addition, the 50-mile Bike Ride snakes through DTLA, LA River, “Frogtown”, LA Zoo, Travel Town, Burbank, Glendale, Verdugo Foothills, Montrose, La Canada, Pasadena, Altadena, San Marino, South Pasadena, El Sereno, Lincoln Heights, and much more.
The L.A. Chinatown Firecracker is one of the largest and oldest running races in the U.S. which had its humble beginnings from a few Belmont High School Alums (a public school located in the Westlake community just outside of Chinatown).
Meanwhile, there’s just two weeks left to get early bird pricing on the April Finish the Ride and Finish the Run in Griffith Park.
It’s now 55 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 31 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.
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 blames the victims by suggesting the safety of Encinitas ebike riders is in the hands of Gen-Z, meaning teenage ebike riders. Even though the real danger comes from the drivers they’re forced to share the road with, thanks to a lack of safe infrastructure.
No bias here, either. In a clear indication of who they think poses the greatest risk, Fresno police cited 32 drivers in their latest bicycle and pedestrian safety operation — and 96 bicyclists and pedestrians.
Or here. A London bike rider famous for riding with his cat was scolded for riding around a car, after the driver had just pulled out and cut him off.
An Irish driver complains that a bike rider must “enjoy playing with traffic” by riding in the traffic lane when there’s a perfectly good bikeway right next to it — even though it’s blocked by a bollard.
The LA Times sums up the prosecution’s case against wealthy socialite and Grossman Burn Center co-founder Rebecca Grossman as “Liquor, Valium, speed and recklessness;” Grossman is on trial for two counts of murder for the high speed hit-an-run deaths of two little kids as they crossed the street with their parents and siblings in Westlake Village last September.
Yo! Venice offers video of the badly damaged Marvin Braude Bike Trail, which collapsed during last week’s heavy rains; remarkably, the bike path appears to have been build with little or no rebar or other means of support beyond the concrete itself.
Hermosa Beach is considering a proposal to allow cops to impound bicycles and ebikes of riders cited for traffic violations. Although that would appear to violate state law, which does not permit it.
Sad news from Los Altos, where a woman riding a bicycle was killed in a collision.
San Francisco State Sen. Scott Wiener discusses his proposed bill to require speed limiting devices in all new cars, which keep drivers from exceeding ten miles over the speed limit. And which would probably do more to save lives than anything else the state could do right now.
He gets it. A writer for Bicycling says stop the ebike hate, and love your fellow bicyclists regardless of how they dress or what they ride. Unfortunately, this one doesn’t seem to be available anywhere else, so you may be screwed if the magazine blocks you.
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, a writer for Visor pens a love letter to bicycling, expressing “the simple yet profound joy of riding a bicycle.”
Portland, Oregon rebounded from a “precipitous drop” in bicycling rates last year with a modest 5% increase in this year’s count.
The rich get richer. On top of Denver’s successful ebike voucher program, residents of the city can now get paid $1 a mile to ride their bikes instead of driving, up to a maximum of $200 a month.
New York bicycling deaths dipped just slightly last year, a full decade into the city’s failed Vision Zero program.
A pair of bills in the New Jersey legislature would impose an $8 annual registration fee and require a $35,000 liability insurance policy for even slow-speed, ped-assist ebikes, as well as e-scooters, in an apparent attempt to kill the ebike boom and keep people in their cars.
A new report suggests the post-pandemic sales slump affecting the worldwide bike industry will last through at lease next year; meanwhile, sales at Shimano’s bicycle division were down 30% last year.
A writer for Cycling Weekly describes what it’s like to ride in the worst bike lane in the world.
Momentum offers ten ways to go on a bicycle date.
Cyclist explains how to get more aero on your bike. Unless you ride an upright bike, in which case, as you were.
Canadian Cycling Magazine nominates a Toronto driver for the most egregious case of driving in a bike lane. Which sounds like a challenge to SoCal drivers.
This is why people keep dying on our streets. A driver walked without a single day behind bars, despite being convicted of intentionally ramming a bike rider into a large truck, breaking the victim’s spine and leaving him a “hollow shell of a person.”
Harry Styles is one of us, as he goes on a late-night bikeshare ride through the streets of London with girlfriend Taylor Russell.
Dublin, Ireland offered a plan to halt pass-through traffic in the city center to make room for buses, bicyclists and pedestrians, along with drivers who actually have a destination in town, after a study showed that 60% of downtown Dublin drivers were just passing through.
Sad news from Seattle, as former Giro and ‘cross cyclist, and longtime bike industry pro, Tim Rutledge died following a battle with cancer at age 65.
And a corgi on an ebike is all I really ask of life.
Un chien a l’arrière du peloton pic.twitter.com/gS2uLuOMgZ
— Emmanuel (@EmmanuelSPV) February 13, 2024
Thanks to Dr. Grace Peng for forwarding the tweet, or whatever the hell it’s called these days.
Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.
Oh, and fuck Putin