My apologies for yesterday’s unexcused absence.
Monday was a rough day.
It was supposed to be my wife’s first day at her new job, after the company she’d been with for 20 years shut down in the first days of the pandemic. But it lasted just three hours before her new bosses decided they needed someone familiar with their systems, rather than training her as they had promised.
So now we’re both back where we’ve been for the last 18 months, with her extended unemployment benefits expiring next month, just as the Delta variant is exploding.
Today’s common theme is hit-and-run, sadly.
Starting with the heartless coward who backed over a 91-year old woman on the sidewalk behind his work truck in LA’s University Park neighborhood — then got out and watched her die for three minutes before driving away, without doing a damn thing to help.
— Jeff Vaughn (@JeffVaughn) August 4, 2021
And if that doesn’t demand a murder charge once he’s caught, I don’t know what does. As always, there’s a standing $50,000 reward for any fatal hit-and-run in Los Angeles.
Meanwhile, San Diego police are looking for the driver who fled the scene after running a Mission Bay red light and smashing into a man on a bicycle, dragging the victim and his bike several yards, and leaving him with life-threatening injuries.
The driver abandoned their truck nearby, and fled the scene on foot. Which always raises the question of whether truck was stolen.
Or they just want to be able to claim it was later.
Police in Riverside are asking for the public’s help in identifying a man who was seriously injured in a hit-and-run while riding his bike, which left him a facial injuries too serious for a photo. Seriously, we’ve said it before, but this is why you should always carry some form of ID that won’t get stolen every time you get on your bike.
And let’s not forget this hit-and-run that took the like of a bike-riding man in Ontario Monday night.
Modesto police are looking for the SUV driver who ran down a bike rider from behind and left him to die alone in the street.
In one of the most bizarre hit-and-runs ever, a pair of Kansas women apparently kidnapped the bike rider they had just crashed into, loading the victim into their car before dumping him somewhere else; police later found him safe, but suffering from significant injuries.
Police in New Jersey busted a 92-year old man who kept driving after hitting a 14-year old boy on a bicycle, telling investigators he thought he’d hit a tree branch. Because evidently, tree branches look a lot like 14-year old kids on bikes once you get that age.
A 71-year old New Orleans man turned himself in for a mid-July hit-and-run that took the life of a 74-year old woman artist riding a bike — but only after a warrant had been issued for his arrest.
Lest anyone think this is just is an American problem, a New Zealand driver is on trial for killing a bike rider while fleeing from the police, then trying to hide his damaged car under a pile of blankets.
Because that wouldn’t look suspicious at all, apparently.
Sadly, though, nothing will ever change until authorities start taking the crime seriously, and actually do something to stop drivers before they flee, like the cowards they are.
Streets For All is looking for volunteers to help host a two block, four hour, carfree block party in Koreatown a week from Saturday.
This is who we share the road with.
During a road rage dispute between two North Carolina drivers, they each pulled out a gun and shot at each other, injuring a 4-year-old girl. Both drivers are claiming self-defense. One of the shooters is the grandson of a former county sheriff. #ncpol https://t.co/rL9PLaVHcY
— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) August 2, 2021
Can we please get this sign here?
The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.
After a New York state senator nearly ran down someone riding a bike with his car, he naturally responded by introducing legislation to crack down on people on bicycles; Streetsblog responds that the danger on our streets doesn’t come from bike riders, but from the people in the big, dangerous machines.
Someone has been sabotaging a busy Virginia Beach VA bike lane for the past month, tossing thumbtacks into it in an apparent attempt to cause flat tires and possible injuries.
A Miami man faces charges for driving through a group of bike-riding kids, then intentionally running down a girl as she tried to chase him down.
Then there’s this —
This is a new one.
“Crap in the bike lane” pic.twitter.com/9Q2dRJrQl1
— Anne of Cleves🚶🏼♀️🚲🛴🚌 (@amtillie) August 2, 2021
But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.
T.I. was busted when Amsterdam cops politely invited him into the backseat of their patrol car after the rapper rode his bike through an intersection — apparently against the light — and broke the mirror on the police car.
LaVerne is considering a 510-foot bike and pedestrian bridge connecting the Pomona Fairplex with the city’s coming L Line, nee Gold Line, station. No word on what Shirley has planned.
LA County is proposing a $30 million, 2.6-mile bikeway along Rosemead Blvd in the Whittier Narrows area. Although you may have to give your email address to get past the paywall.
Fountain Valley-based Pedego is riding the crest of the pandemic bike boom, with a whopping $121 million in sales over the past 12 months.
A Beaumont man who already had a misdemeanor warrant now faces charges for carrying a loaded, unregistered handgun on his bike.
A 13-year old girl was hospitalized after she was hit by a driver while riding in a Moorpark crosswalk; no word on her condition.
San Luis Obispo’s popular Bread Bike is moving into a brick and mortar storefront after years of delivering their baked good by bicycle; no word on whether the two-wheeled deliveries will continue when customers can just pop in for a loaf.
What apparently won’t be included in the new bipartisan federal infrastructure bill is money dedicated to removing highways from urban areas; the intent was to restore damage from many existing freeways that destroyed what were then thriving Black neighborhoods.
A Streetsblog op-ed says support the Recreational Trails Program, but don’t fund it with money earmarked for safe sidewalks and bike lanes.
Men’s Journal falls in love with a pedal-less, throttle controlled e-balance bike, calling it “the coolest gift you can give your kid.” Um, no.
While drivers and state officials decry a massive mudslide that blocked Colorado’s I-70, bike riders are taking advantage of an unexpectedly carfree Loveland Pass.
Like most major American cities, Houston roads are for deadly for bike riders and pedestrians because they prioritized traffic speed over safety.
My bike-friendly hometown is better for hipsters than Berkeley, according to an “unironic” survey from Rent.com, but not as good as Seattle, Minneapolis and Tempe.
A Philadelphia reporter finally learns to ride a bike after decades of failed attempts.
He gets it. A writer for Road.cc calls the bike industry to task for focusing on speed and performance, at the expense of a large segment of their customer base.
Your next bike could be made from LEGOs, though it might be too small to ride. Even if it is fully functional.
A zen website suggests finding yours by exploring Edmonton, Alberta by bicycle.
The former leader of India’s Congress Party rode a bike to Parliament to protest the rising price of gas and cooking fuels.
It’s the end of an era, as Tejay van Garderen, one of the few American cyclists to make a mark in WorldTour in the post-Lance era, calls it a career after 12 years.
The UK was knocked out of the men’s team pursuit in the Tokyo Olympics when Danish rider Frederik Madsen rode directly into a British cyclist who had fallen off the pace, then leapt up and started swearing at the hapless Brit; needless to say, the Fleet Street press was having none of it.
An Aussie cyclist was lucky to escape with bruises and road rash on his face and arms when the handlebars inexplicably snapped off his track bike at 40 mph, just one thousand meters into a four thousand meter race.
Rouleur looks at under-the-radar riders who could impact this month’s Vuelta.
Stolen bike or hot car? Your next bike could be a funky, one-seat, four-wheeled, ped-assist ebike/car hybrid.
And your old wheels could be a chicken’s new merry-go-round.
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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.