Tag Archive for bicycling

Morning Links: Tuskegee Airman — and bike rider — Robert Friend dies at 99; and minding a Duarte bike shop at 101

Let’s start with the passing of a real American hero.

LA’s own Robert Friend, one of the last surviving members of the legendary Tuskegee Airmen, died on Friday, just months away from his 100th birthday.

The 99-year old Lt. Colonel flew 142 missions over Europe and North Africa during World War II as a fighter pilot in the all-black squadron, before going on to serve in Korea and Vietnam. He was later attached to NASA as an Air Force liaison, working on the Titan, Atlas and Delta rockets and the Space Shuttle program.

Not to mention overseeing the infamous Project Blue Book for five years, as the once top secret program investigated over 12,000 reports of flying saucers and other mysterious airborne objects.

Here’s what the Washington Post had to say about his flying career.

Although Col. Friend occasionally discussed Project Blue Book in interviews, he was far better known for his record as a Tuskegee Airman, notably for a two-week stretch when he twice averted disaster.

Striking an oil barge in Germany on Dec. 14, 1944, he unleashed a barrage of 50-caliber bullets that triggered an enormous, mushroom-shaped explosion, nearly taking down his aircraft. “The flame completely engulfed the diving ship,” the Pittsburgh Courier reported at the time. “Friend said it was sort of like being in hell. He managed to pull his ship out at the last moment.”

Days later, he faced bad weather and mechanical difficulties while flying over Italy. Disoriented in the darkness, praying to avoid crashing into a mountain or ejecting over the water, he took his chances and bailed out — and recalled in a 2006 lecture that he found himself parachuting toward a mountain.

“I hit the side of the mountain, slid down to the ground and saw a woman running to me with a knife in her hand,” he said, according to a Washington Post report. An alarmed Col. Friend soon found that she was no Nazi sympathizer. In an act of wartime desperation, he said, she simply “wanted the silk from my parachute.”

Robert Friend was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his heroism, as well as the Congressional Gold Medal given to the entire unit.

The Tuskegee Airmen had to battle racism and discrimination, both in the military and in the Jim Crow South surrounding their Alabama base, before being allowed to face the Nazis.

Yet they quickly earned a reputation as some of the finest fliers on either side, their success in the air eventually leading to the full-integration of the US military.

And eventually, the United States itself.

If that’s not enough, Friend was also one of us, a supporter of Ride 2 Recovery well into his 90s, riding with wounded vets on the seven-day, 465-mile UnitedHealhcare Ride 2 Recovery California Challenge from San Francisco to Los Angeles when he was 94.

Robert Friend will be buried with full military honors over the fourth of July weekend.

He leaves this world a little poorer and smaller than it was just a few days ago.

And so is the Southern California bicycling community.

Photo shows Robert Friend as a young officer, from the CAF Red Tail Squadron website

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Somehow, we missed this one earlier this month.

Duarte’s Loyd’s Custom Bicycle Shop is back in business, nine months after 101-year old owner Gordon Loyd Gibbons left to have cataract surgery.

The shop, which specializes in restoring classic Schwinn bicycles, has been in business for 50 years. And Gibbons says he’ll keep running it “until the good Lord takes me.”

Speaking of Schwinn, reading that story led me down a rabbit hole to the discovery of my first bike, a hand-me-down, hand-me-down, hand-me-down that passed through all three of my siblings before it got to me.

And had been repainted so many times there wasn’t a hint of its original ID beyond the Schwinn badge.

So I had no idea just what it was until recognizing it in a 1960s Schwinn catalog.

Although if I ever make it out to Lloyd’s shop, I may look for that classic 10 peed Schwinn Varsity I’ve always wanted, instead.

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CyclingSavvy instructor Gary Cziko sets out to ride his bike on each of the streets in LA’s Vision Zero High Injury Network at rush hour, recording the results on a nausea-inducing 360° bike cam — starting with Lincoln Blvd in Venice.

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Breathe LA is teaming with SCAG — the Southern California Association of Governments — to host a panel discussion of key mobility and transportation issues facing the greater Los Angeles community in DTLA this evening.

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No bias here.

In yet another example of biking while black, a black bike rider was stopped and handcuffed by police in Michigan for the crime of not having a light on his bike as he rode to his second job in the next town over — even though he was holding a flashlight to fulfill the requirement for a light.

And was incorrectly told he had to have an ID just to ride a bicycle.

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This is who we share the roads with.

Seven motorcyclists were killed, and three injured, when a pickup driver pulling a flatbed trailer slammed head-on into a motorcycle club comprised of active duty and veteran marines.

Witnesses reported the truck was swerving uncontrollably across the roadway prior to the crash.

Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the tip, who also notes the prevalence of reporting without an apparent driver involved, or anyone else who might be responsible, other than the victims.

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Local

Yes, there are more bike riders and pedestrians on LA freeways.

A group of bike riders led by UCLA climate scientist Alex Hall are riding from Oakland to Los Angeles on the 550-mile California Climate Expedition to witness the effects of climate change firsthand, while raising funds for the UCLA Center for Climate Science.

E-scooters haven’t made their way to many economically challenged parts of the San Fernando Valley yet — if they ever do.

Some residents of the San Fernando Valley say don’t expand the LA River bike path when some segments are littered with trash and needles. Not to mention throwaway people who have nowhere else to go, right?

A bighearted real estate agent donated 50 bicycles to Pasadena’s Elizabeth House, for the kids of pregnant women who’ve suffered from homelessness and abuse. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

You could win the new Stranger Things BMX bike at next weekend’s popup event to promote the show at the Santa Monica pier.

About damn time. Santa Monica will spend $3 million to improve the beachfront Marvin Braude bike trail north of the Santa Monica pier, including widening the path to create separate walking and biking paths. Now we just have to get Los Angeles on board for their section, as well.

 

State

A San Diego teenager suffered a broken leg when he crashed into the side of a pickup whose driver cut him off while he was riding lightless.

Two San Diego boys who disappeared while on a 1993 bike ride were honored with a new plaque on an existing memorial in the San Diego South Bay National Wildlife Refuge, 26 years after they were found murdered in a riverbed.

The Coachella Valley will add another 15 miles to the planned 50-mile CV Link bike and pedestrian path encircling the Valley. Thanks to Richard Fox, who was interviewed extensively for the story, for the heads-up.

A Ventura letter writer complains about the newly installed bollards along a protected bike lane on Telephone Road, calling on the city to get rid of the ugly “white plastic picket fence posts.”

An 82-year old San Luis Obispo man is suing the local airport after a gust of jet blast knocked him off his bicycle. Seriously, who could possibly have foreseen jet blast at an airport?

A bike-riding Fremont man was charged with a hate crime for throwing rocks at several Muslim men and threatening them with a large stick; he already has a lengthy criminal record for violent behavior.

Sad news, as a survivor of the Paradise Fire, and the town’s unofficial ambassador, has died of a heart attack suffered during a 39-mile bike ride through Mendocino County.

 

National

A Eugene OR letter writer says bicyclists need to be licensed, insured and pay for their own bike lanes. And stay the hell off major roads when there’s a parallel bike route. Because apparently, the taxes bike riders already pay just aren’t good enough. And people on bikes never, ever need to take the most direct route to where they’re going, unlike motorists.

A pair of Denver bike advocates relate the lessons they learned on a conference junket visiting Copenhagen, one of the world’s most bike-friendly cities.

Boise, Idaho has opened a new state-of-the-art bicycle parking facility with room for 42 bikes in an existing parking garage. Even if it does look more like they’re preparing for a steel cage death match.

Four Houston teenagers are under arrest for allegedly testing out their laser gunsight on an apparently random bike rider in a drive-by shooting; the victim saw the green dot on himself just before they shot him in the arm.

A Dallas pastor is trying to bring America together by riding a bike across the country and striking up conversations with strangers about life and spiritual matters.

Apparently, Arkansas horse and mule riders don’t need to stop for stop signs anymore, either.

Chicago residents have embraced the new 606 bike and pedestrian trail, even as it has contributed to gentrification in the former low-income and industrial neighborhoods it passes through.

Even the Twin Cities has a gender gap, with twice as many men riding to work as women.

Once again, a dangerous motorist is able to stay on the roads until it’s too late, this time in Ohio, where a 15-year old bike rider was killed by a speeding motorcyclist riding with a suspended license and two outstanding traffic warrants.

A Nashville columnist says this scooter madness must end, because it’s not the micromobility revolution we need. Meanwhile, an e-scooter rider who was killed in a collision shortly after the devices were introduced to the city, sparking calls for a scooter ban, was riding at twice the legal alcohol limit at the time of the crash.

No bias here, either. A new study shows that nearly 25% of New York bike riders fail to stop for red lights — which means that 75% do. Half of all riders came to a full stop, while another 25% stopped, then proceeded when they thought it was safe.

An injured bikeshare rider says the NYPD ignore reckless driver behavior that victimizes bike riders.

Kindhearted New York Yankees players dug into their own pockets to buy a new adaptive bicycle for a 14-year old boy with a rare seizure disorder. I’ve never been a Yankees fan, but I may cut them a break after this.

The Wall Street Journal asks if you should trade in your car for an ebike. Short answer, yes. Even if most of the story is hidden behind a paywall.

Three Florida police officers were honored for saving the life of a 41-year old man after he went into cardiac arrest while riding his bicycle.

A Florida man has undergone over 60 hours of surgery, and run up countless medical bills, after a hit-and-run driver dragged him over half a mile under his pickup as he fled. A crowdfunding page has raised nearly $7,500 of the modest $10,000 goal after eight days.

 

International

The CBC wonders if it’s rude to blast Bon Jovi from the speakers on your bike. It should at least be a Canadian artist like Bryan Adams or Alanis Morissette, let alone someone from this century. 

Nice move. A Canadian bikeshare adds an adult tricycle, enabling people with disabilities to ride, as well.

Royal-in-law James Middleton, younger brother of Kate, says his five therapy dogs are devastated after someone stole the bakfiets he uses to cart them through the streets of London. Though someone should tell People that the “unique bike” “with a cart upfront” is just an everyday cargo bike. 

The parents of a 21-year old woman who was killed in the London Bridge terrorist attack have founded a London to Paris fundraising bike ride.

A British cyclist who hold the record for the London to Paris crossing now sets his sights on a new record for crossing China’s Desert of Death. Call me crazy, but I’d assume they call it the Desert of Death for a reason.

Brit bicyclists have set up a crowdfunding campaign to help pay expenses for the bike rider who was ordered to pay up to £100,000 — the equivalent of over $127,000 — in damages after colliding with a distracted pedestrian who stepped off a curb in front of him, even though he had the green light, had honked his horn to warn her, and had swerved to try to avoid her. The page has already raised well over 100% more than the original £21,300 goal in just three days. 

I want to be like her when I grow up. An 81-year old Scottish grandmother has set a new record as the oldest person to ride the full length of the Great Britain.

Evidently, Copenhagen hasn’t always been bike friendly. After former INXS frontman Michael Hutchence suffered a serious head injury when he was the victim of a road raging cab driver in the Danish city, it changed his personality and set him on the path to his eventual suicide in an Australian hotel room.

Thailand’s new king is one of us, as he goes for an incognito bike ride with his wife and massive entourage in Lucerne, Switzerland. Although his fashion choices leave something to be desired.

Madrid’s pollution-fighting ban on motor vehicles could be in jeopardy as a new conservative government moves in.

A Bangladeshi midwife in her 70s still rides a bicycle around the countryside delivering medications.

Tres shock! Aussie drivers are stunned and appalled to learn that bicyclists not only are allowed to ride two abreast, but actually encouraged to do so. Which says a lot less about people on bikes than it does about drivers who don’t know the law.

Thousands of Malaysian children will get recycled bicycles after a Mandalay entrepreneur bought up 10,000 bikeshare bikes that were abandoned when the companies pulled out of Singapore and Malaysia.

 

Competitive Cycling

Geraint Thomas explains what it’s like to experience a high speed bike crash — without actually having to go through all the pain and stuff.

Cyclist questions why so many pro teams are failing to make the podium.

Don’t look for American Tejay Van Garderen to challenge for the podium in next month’s Tour de France, after he was assigned to ride in support of team leader Rigoberto Uran.

Annapolis, Maryland welcomed the finishers of this year’s RAAM, aka the Race Across America, including six-time champ Christoph Strasser.

Must be in the genes. Milwaukee’s Nick Reistad spent five years as a pro cyclist, including stints with the US National and Jelly Belly teams; now his six-year old daughter is about ride in her first race.

A British ultracyclist learns the hard way that you can’t set a new 24-hour record if you don’t stay on your bike. And you can’t do that if you spill water on the track.

Apparently, women’s cycling has the same problems the men do with massive crushes of fans crowding the peloton.

 

Finally…

Nothing says 2019 like a bikeshare-by shooting. Who needs an ebike when you’ve got an electric unicycle?

And when you’re carrying over a pound of weed, maybe try not to call attention to yourself by stealing a bicycle.

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Thanks to David Erickson for his generous donation to help support this site. Your support to help keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way every day is always appreciated. 

Morning Links: Millions driving while high, Sullivan Canyon closing for five weeks, and the war on bikes goes on

Something else to look forward to.

A new AAA report says millions of Americans are driving while high.

In fact, an estimated 15 million people got behind the wheel within an hour of getting stoned on weed.

Never mind that driving while high is just as illegal as driving drunk, if harder to prove.

And just as deadly, too.

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If you want to ride Sullivan Canyon this summer, you might want to get there quick.

Or you’ll have a long wait until August.

Off-road advocacy group CORBA reports SoCal Gas will shut down the popular mountain biking trail for the next five weeks on Monday for gas line work.

Click to expand.

Speaking of CORBA, aka the Concerned Off Road Bicyclists Association, they do a great job working with SoCal governments and businesses to maintain and expand your access to some of America’s best mountain biking trails.

If you ride off-road, you owe it to yourself to support them the way they support you.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on — teen skateboard edition.

A San Francisco bike rider was the victim of an apparent random, unprovoked assault when a pair of teenage kids whacked him with a skateboard for no apparent reason, then simply ran off.

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Local

Melissa McCarthy is one of us, donning her military jacket and polka dot helmet for an adult tricycle ride through the streets of LA. And she signals her turns, too.

The Pico Rivera city council will meet next Tuesday to discuss proposals for the city’s first protected bike lane and a new pedestrian bridge across the San Gabriel River.

The Press-Telegram says the next Long Beach street fight will be over reduced capacity and limiting turns on the only way out of the Peninsula neighborhood.

State

A new report shows California pedestrians are at serious risk on the mean streets of the Golden State.

The San Diego Union-Tribune examines both sides of the debate over a recently approved plan to remove parking in favor of installing protected bike lanes on 30th Street, with one side saying they’re right for businesses, climate and community, and the other saying the loss of parking will hurt it. Because as we all know, communities are all about cars, and we’re just here to move them around from time to time.

After a Madera bike rider laid his bike down in a failed attempt to avoid crashing into the side of an SUV, police say bicyclists using the crosswalk are required to get off their bikes and walk it across the street. That’s only true where sidewalk riding is banned, though, so your results may vary. And no one is prohibited from riding in the traffic lane through any surface street intersection anywhere in California. 

Bad news from San Jose, where a 69-year old Italian man has died following a solo bike crash.

More bad news from the Bay Area, where a Discovery Bay man was found dead in the road next to his bicycle, from what authorities describe as a medical event.

 

National

City Lab says Fear of Missing Out — aka FOMO — does not make for good urban mobility policy.

Bike accessory maker Planet Bike puts its money where its mouth is, donating over $25,000 to bike advocacy organizations.

A truck website offers advice on bike tools you should keep in your vehicle. And for a change, they actually make sense.

Outside looks at what’s next for Zwift.

Oregon’s senate passes a modified version of the Idaho Stop Law, allowing bicyclists to treat stop signs as yields, while still having to stop for red lights.

A Spokane woman learns the hard way that leaving a vintage bike unlocked is just an invitation for someone to steal it — even though she was just inside applying for a job.

Residents of a Chicago suburb are resisting plans to place a bike path extension along an existing nature trail, suggesting it should go under the massive power lines on a nearby abandoned rail line instead.

A Minnesota man prepares to ride the North Star Bicycle Race, a 629.4-mile unsupported endurance race.

Cincinnati has applied for grant to build a shared-use path along a major boulevard, completing a one-mile gap in an unfinished on-street bike lane. Even if you don’t read the story, it’s worth a click for the sweet steel frame Pinarello illustrating it.

Tragic news from Euclid, Ohio, where a man was killed in a rare fatal traffic collision between two people on bicycles.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a bike from an Ohio Easter Seals office.

In an incredibly boneheaded decision, New York’s new ebike law specifically bans parents from taking their kids along with them, even if the bike is designed for exactly that.

Now you, too, can win your very own Dunkin’ bicycle. But only if you live in New York.

A new study shows a “disturbing” number of Gotham bicyclists are riding distracted by their electronic devices. Just wait until someone tells them about all those distracted drivers, who pose a much greater risk to everyone around them. Let alone car makers who are building text readers, TV screens and game consoles into their dashboards.

A DC jury has found a white bicyclist guilty in a road rage assault on a black motorist, but deadlocked on the hate crime enhancement for repeatedly using the n-word; he was convicted of assault with a dangerous weapon and felony assault while armed for using his U-lock to repeatedly hit the victim and his car.

 

International

Many Vancouver residents are riding sans-skid lids, despite a law mandating bike helmet use.

British Columbia unveils a new active transportation policy, including an $850 incentive for ebike buyers.

An Ontario, Canada bike rider is calling for better bike infrastructure after getting hit by drivers four times in three years.

London’s mayor pens a nasty letter to the Kensington and Chelsea council over cancelled plans for a much-needed bikeway, demanding to know how many more residents need to be maimed or killed before they do something.

 

Competitive Cycling

A young racer competing in Spain’s Basque Country suffered a nasty gash all the way across his chest when he crashed into a race barrier.

Cycling Tips puts all the bizarre conspiracy theories about Chris Froome’s serious bike crash into context.

VeloNews says 19-year old Belgian cyclist Remco Evenepoel is living up to the hype.

 

Finally…

No, that tree didn’t eat a doughboy’s bike. Reflections on riding up the Left Coast and all that jazz.

And probably not the best idea to swear at the cop who tried to pull you over and lead them on a bike chase when you already have an outstanding warrant.

Unless you can totally get away, of course.

 

Morning Links: Dump the Pump Day tomorrow, why bike riders are the happiest commuters, and bike thefts up in DTLA

Tomorrow is National Dump the Pump Day.

Consider it the perfect excuse to leave your car at home and take a bus or train.

Or better yet, just ride your bike. You’ll be happier.

No, really.

Photo by fotografierende from Pexels.

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A Kiwi study from three months in the future attempts to explain why bike riders are the happiest commuters.

Because obviously, we are.

According to the study’s authors,

We conclude that research points to four important components of high commute satisfaction amongst cyclists: 1) A high degree of commuting control and ‘arrival-time reliability’; 2) Enjoyable levels of sensory stimulation; 3) The ‘feel better’ effects of moderate intensity exercise; and 4) Greater opportunities for social interaction.

They suggest, as a result, that bicycling infrastructure should focus on more than just safety by enhancing the physical, social and psychological pleasures of bicycling.

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DTLA bike cop Sgt. Helper sends word that bike thefts are up in the Downtown area.

https://twitter.com/1Cycle20/status/1141181164855558144

And yes, that’s really his name. As well as what he does for the bike community.

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It looks like most of Orange County’s Coyote Creek Bikeway is still open, despite construction.

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Sure, let’s go with that.

A former Iowa cop has been charged in the 2 am hit-and-run death of a bike rider, claiming he thought he’d hit a deer.

A deer with headlights and tail lights, apparently.

He turned himself in the next day, most likely after giving himself time to sober up. And after returning to the scene of the crime an hour after the crash, in a different truck.

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An English bicyclist learns the hard way not to mistake a pothole for a puddle.

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Local

LAist discovers some people love e-scooters, some think we need better infrastructure to support them, and some think they’re the herpes of urban transit. Meanwhile, a Reddit user says police are ticketing sidewalk scooter riders to the tune of $200 a pop.

The newly passed California state budget includes $800,000 for a bike and pedestrian friendly bridge linking Glendale with Griffith Park, the final phase of a three-part beautification program along the LA River.

CiclaValley catches up with bike and transit projects in the San Fernando Valley.

State

Victor Bale sends word that accused stoned, speeding driver Ronnie Ramon Huerta Jr. is due in court July 17th for a trial readiness conference in the death of bike rider Mark Kristofferson during last year’s Tour of Palm Springs, as well as severely injuring another rider; Huerta faces a murder charge in the crash, as well as charges of DUI and driving without a license.

A Bakersfield man admits to fatally stabbing another man, in a dispute that started with the killer stealing one of the victim’s bikes in retaliation for the victim assaulting someone in a wheelchair.

San Francisco approves plans for protected bike lanes on Howard and Folsom streets, where three bike riders have been killed in recent years.

Oakland’s experience with iconic Telegraph Ave shows that even cheap parking-protected bike lanes work.

Petaluma businesses owners are just the latest to complain about the possible loss of parking spaces to make room for bike lanes. Even though road diets are about reducing road capacity to calm traffic and improve safety, rather than just bike lanes. And as we keep pointing out, bike lanes are good for business, more than making up for any parking spaces that were taken out.

Get your votes in for this year’s candidates for the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame, part of the Marin Museum of Bicycling.

Bighearted Sacramento cops surprise a seven-year old boy in a hospital ICU with a visit from a police dog. And a new bicycle.

A bike rider was hospitalized with major injuries when he was broadsided by a 16-year old driver on the north shore of Lake Tahoe Tuesday morning, even though earlier reports said the victim had been killed; the driver played the universal Get Out of Jail Free card, claiming the sun was in his eyes. Thanks to John McBreaty for the tip. 

 

National

The Bike League says what we already know — too many bicyclists are still dying on the streets — and offers suggestions on what you can do to actually change that. Meanwhile, PBS News Hour talks with Daisy Villafuerte of Los Angeles Walks about why pedestrian deaths in the US are at their highest level in 30 years.

Wired asks if American micromobility is a bust, concluding it doesn’t have to be if cities will follow China’s example and make room for it on the streets.

Now you, too, can get your new Stranger Things Mongoose bike at Target for the low, low price of just $219.99. Actually, that is pretty cheap. Let’s hope the bike isn’t.

You’ve got to be kidding. A Portland man gets off with a lousy 20 hours of community service for injuring a woman bike rider by booby trapping a multi-use path, saying he just got drunk with a friend who “did some stupid stuff.” When will the courts finally take a deliberate attempt to injure or kill another human being seriously? He should have been charged with assault with a deadly weapon at a bare minimum — and given the jail time to match.

This is who we share the roads with. A drunken Rhode Island woman identified herself to police as “Hello Kitty” after rolling her car on someone’s lawn and crashing into their house.

Operators of New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare system are ticked off that a bill legalizing ebikes and e-scooters in the state will ban their new ped-assist bikes from the popular Hudson River Greenway. Meanwhile, Treehugger’s Lloyd Alter says the new rules miss the entire point of the ebike revolution.

The New Jersey Turnpike Authority bulldozed a secret BMX track after learning about the course long hidden in the woods.

A WaPo video offers tips on what to bring on your next bikepacking trip, and what to leave behind.

A South Carolina man marked Father’s Day by fixing the flat tire on his teenaged son’s bike.

 

International

He gets it. A Toronto columnist says a bike lane isn’t an “Okay to Park Here Briefly Lane” or a “Really Narrow Right-Turning Lane.”

No double standard here. A “calm and reasonable” London bike rider was ordered to pay damages to a woman who stepped in front of him while walking distracted — even though he had the green light, and had tried to sound a warning with an airhorn mounted on his bike. Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the heads-up.

London letter writers say no, bike lanes aren’t a waste of money.

Britain’s bike-riding billionaire Lord Sugar had emergency heart surgery for a blocked artery just hours after finishing a 25-mile tandem bike ride with his wife in the US. Good thing he’s got all that money; he’ll need it to pay those American medical bills.

An accused serial killer in the Netherlands says he had a bike belonging to one of the victims because he bought it from her, not because he kept it after killing her. Sure, let’s go with that.

Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder tracks down the Dutch woman who borrowed her brother’s bicycle 32 years ago to give the lost musician a ride back to his hotel, and belatedly rewards her with concert tickets.

An engineering website considers Germany’s coming 62-mile bicycle autobahn that will connect ten towns and four universities. Meanwhile, Los Angeles can’t even manage a decent bike lane across the Westside.

A new German startup is crowdfunding a bike trailer that folds up onto the back of your bike in just ten seconds when not in use.

A Nairobi, Kenya man learns the hard way how to ride a bike as an adult.

 

Competitive Cycling

American cyclist Tejay van Garderen is brimming with confidence following his second-place finish in the Critérium du Dauphiné stage race, leading into next month’s Tour de France.

Racing the Giro route on an ebike.

Now that he’s finally settled up with the feds, Lance is making a non-bike comeback, partnering with the grandson of a Canadian sports legend for a new venture capital fund supporting sports, fitness, nutrition and wellness markets.

 

Finally…

No, seriously, if you’re riding a stolen bike on your way to make a drug buy, don’t ride salmon. You know you live in a small town when the top crime of the day is a kid allegedly smearing berries on another kid’s bike.

And who needs a bike to do a backflip?

Morning Links: US bike and pedestrian deaths up in 2018, Mehta convicted in OC hit-and-run, and e-scooters in the news

Traffic deaths are down slightly in the US.

But only if you’re in a car or truck. Otherwise, it appears to be open season on anyone walking or riding a bike.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, overall traffic deaths declined last year to a three-year low of 36,750.

But preliminary numbers show bicycling deaths were projected to rise a whopping 10%, while pedestrian fatalities are up 4%.

Officials would like to put the blame on distracted drivers, but are having a hard time getting accurate figures. Because — tres shock! — drivers are reluctant to admit they were distracted after killing someone.

No word yet on the actual number of deaths for either group.

But whatever it turns out to be, it’s too damn many.

Photo shows an abandoned bike carcass that someone undoubtedly loved once, left carelessly on the sidewalk.

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I’m told that Medium contributor Pratiti Renee Mehta has been convicted by a jury of her peers in the Costa Mesa hit-and-run that left a 56-year old bike rider with a compound ankle fracture this past March.

She was arrested following numerous tips from the public after police released photos of her black Mercedes following the victim just before running him down.

Prosecutors dropped a charge of assault with a deadly weapon before the case went to trial.

She’ll be formally sentenced on July 17th.

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Today’s common theme is e-scooters.

Lots of e-scooters.

According to a San Francisco op-ed, a bill under consideration in the state legislature would ban liability waivers for scooter providers, opening the companies up to countless lawsuits, frivolous and otherwise.

Someone vandalized dozens of dockless bikes and e-scooters in San Diego’s Ocean Beach with graffiti containing “inappropriate” words, including “Bird sucks.”

A Nashville writer says e-scooters are not the transportation revolution we need.

New York is finally deciding to join the 21st Century with a bill that would finally legalize ebikes, as well as e-scooters.

E-scooter riders face a $600 fine in British Columbia, where the devices fall into a grey area where they’re neither permitted or banned.

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Add one more to our recent collection of WWII bike photos, this time from a sailor stationed in Panama (see the last photo).

And a pretty snappy dresser, too.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for forwarding this one.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on, as a British magazine jokes about using razor wire to stop bicyclists from riding on the sidewalk.

At least, let’s hope they’re joking.

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Local

The Daily News highlights six transportation projects that will transform the San Fernando Valley in coming years. We’ll have to fight to ensure they include bikeways, like many other light rail and BRT (bus rapid transit) projects in the LA area.

Metro will consider first mile/last mile options for the Gold Line at Wednesday’s meeting of the Planning and Programming Committee.

Metro’s Bicycle Education Safety Training (BEST) Program will team with the Pasadena Public Library, LA River Path Project and People for Mobility Justice to present a Bicycle 101 class in Pasadena this Saturday.

 

State

That feeling when good news about a Santa Barbara bike rider turns out to be an ad for the local trauma center.

The leaders of a San Francisco transit workers union say the city is sabotaging its own bikeshare system.

Streetsblog San Francisco congratulates Caltrans for winning an award for creating “another bike and pedestrian hellscape,” complaining the agency has no idea what constitutes safe infrastructure.

A Stockton newspaper recommends exploring the “old pioneer trail” from Old Sacramento to Folsom. And notes that you can easily do all, or part, by bicycle.

 

National

Uh… Seattle spanks Jump and Lime for failing to report complaints about illegally parked dockless ebikes by reducing the number of bikes they’re allowed to deploy on the streets to… 700 more than they do now. That’s going to teach ’em alright.

Apparently having solved the problem of deadly, speeding drivers, Denver is turning its speed guns on bike riders who exceed the city’s 15 mph speed limit on bike paths, threatening $100 tickets for the first offense — whether or not you have a speedometer on your bike.

An 18-year old Wisconsin man is dead after being shot by police in an incident that began with riding a bike without lights after dark; he allegedly dropped his bike and ran, then turned and fired at officers after they used some sort of non-lethal weapons to get him to stop.

Riding 180 miles across Maine — on one wheel.

They get it. Gothamist says no other commute beats the sensory experience of riding a bike.

The NYPD apparently likes bikes without riders more than the ones with one, pausing to rescue a locked bike from a swarm of bees.

Now that’s more like it. A Pennsylvania combination coffee shop and bike shop wins permission to open a taproom, as well. Is it just a coincidence that it’s located in the hometown of Bicycling magazine? Probably not.

A Delaware town says all those wobbly, inexperienced bike riders need to be more courteous.

A Virginia motorcyclist faces a variety of charges after crashing into an eight-year old boy on a bicycle after fleeing from police, who wanted to pull him over for speeding; fortunately, the boy’s injuries were not life-threatening.

 

International

They get it. A Montreal newspaper says it’s time to turn accepted logic that customers arrive by cars and bike lanes are bad for business on its head.

A Nova Scotia bike rider learns the hard way that bicyclists aren’t allowed to ride in the traffic lane if there’s a bike lane on the road, otherwise known as a “must use” law. The same law applies in California, though there are numerous exceptions — including if you’re riding at the speed of traffic.

A Trinidad actor appeared in court for the first time to face charges in the horrific crash that killed two bike riders on the island last year; two other riders survived their injuries.

London residents call for an end to bicycle tours, saying they pose a risk to participants and others. Just wait until they hear about tour buses.

The Guardian’s Peter Walker considers the depressing lessons of the failed flagship bikeway through London’s tony Kensington and Chelsea borough, saying the defeat came after a campaign centered on myths. Including one truly despicable woman who posed as the aunt of a fallen bicyclist to oppose the plan; the victim’s actual sister said blocking the plan was unforgivable.

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list — bikepacking through the Scottish Highlands. I’m in as long as we can add a few Bobby Burns sites somewhere along the way.

More on Irish County Mayo’s wacky plan to improve bicycle safety by requiring bike riders to mount license plates on their bikes.

Cities in the Netherlands have traffic jams, too — they’re just on bicycles.

The Guardian offers photos of 15 of the world’s best bicycling infrastructure projects from the Bicycle Architecture Biennale in Amsterdam. Guess how many of those are in Los Angeles? No, really, go ahead and guess.

Forget bikeshare. A Dutch company wants you to dump your bike in favor of a monthly bicycle subscription service.

The world’s biggest bike maker says Trump’s tariff’s are the final nail in the coffin, as Giant prepares to move manufacturing to Taiwan.

 

Competitive Cycling

Amity Rockwell shares the secrets to eschewing meat, and winning the Dirty Kanza gravel race anyway.

Cyclist considers what Jakob Fuglsang’s victory in the Critérium du Dauphiné means for the upcoming Tour de France.

Australia’s Will Clarke won’t be riding in his inaugural Tour de France after all, after the 34-year old cyclist suffered multiple broken bones in a horrific crash in a Belgian race after leading most of the way.

https://twitter.com/wcsbike/status/1140242280584007680?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1140242280584007680&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.examiner.com.au%2Fstory%2F6220187%2Ftour-hope-gone%2F

 

Finally…

First it was angry drivers, now the deer are out to get us, too. Evidently, there’s no age limit to bike theft.

And no, there is no National SUV Month.

For good reason.

Morning Links: Gaimon badly hurt in track wreck, race rears its ugly head, and bike-riding Turkman Pres takes a few shots

Looks like Phil Gaimon’s Worst Retirement Ever has hit the deck hard.

And not in a good way.

Gaimon recently announced his intention to make the US Olympic team in team pursuit for the 2020 Olympics. But his first attempt on the track has ended in a serious fall, and equally serious injuries.

The LA-based former pro cyclist was competing on the track in a Pennsylvania points race when he took a spill; he’s not even sure what happened.

Gaimon was hospitalized with multiple broken bones, including a broken scapula, collarbone and five broken ribs, as well as a partially collapsed lung.

However, in a major show of character, Gaimon said he’s got medical insurance to cover his injuries, and asked people odonate the money they might have sent his way otherwise to his Chefs Cycle campaign to raise $100,000 for No Kid Hungry to end childhood hunger.

Now that’s a big heart.

Let’s all send him our best wishes for a fast and full recovery.

Photo from Phil Gaimon’s Twitter timeline

………

Bad enough when we have to deal with conflicts with drivers. Far worse when race rears its ugly head.

In a decidedly ugly incident, a former Newark CA city councilmember and possible mayoral candidate called a bike rider an Aryan when the bicyclist repeatedly told him to move his car out of the bike lane, as well as calling him, his father, his god, and all other “Aryans” a homophobic slur.

A DC man is on trial for beating a black driver with his U-lock in what he claims is self-defense in a road rage incident that started with a too close pass; prosecutors accuse him of racial hatred, bolstered by claims that he repeatedly used the N-word, as well as an alleged pattern of racially charged incidents.

………

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

Here in SoCal, a man brutally beat a 65-year old bike rider after an argument at a Buena Park bus stop, then rode off on the victim’s bicycle.

After a San Francisco driver used his car as a weapon to repeatedly ram an ebike rider as he was attempting to pass a slower bicyclist, the police couldn’t be bothered to deal with it because he wasn’t injured badly enough. Evidently, when the SFPD gets a report of a shooting, they ask how badly the victim was injured before deciding whether to investigate, too. Thanks to WCoast for the heads-up.

Scary thought. A Brooklyn bike rider confronted a drunken, road-raging off-duty bus driver over a close pass — who may have been on his way to work.

A New Zealand bicyclist was lucky to escape with relatively minor injuries when an impatient, road raging driver intentionally knocked him off his bike.

………

Sure, why not.

The president of Turkmenistan demonstrates his prowess with firearms and bikes for the troops in a video that couldn’t possibly be fake.

No, really.

………

Rapper A$AP Ferg officially drops his new line of BMX bikes made in conjunction with Redline.

………

Local

Three month’s into LA’s pilot scooter program, city officials say scooter companies need to step up and do better, saying none of them are currently living up to expectations.

Los Angeles has broken ground on a two-block section of South Robertson in the city’s latest Great Streets project. But can any street without bike lanes ever truly be great?

Coldplay frontman Chris Martin is one of us, rolling out on a mountain bike through the ‘Bu.

Complaints are continuing about Long Beach’s Broadway corridor, as some residents and business owners say the new road diet and protected bike lane have made the street more dangerous, and led to a drop in pedestrian traffic.

In a perfect example of windshield bias, a Whittier letter writer can’t seem to conceive of getting to a Metro station without driving.

 

State

New walking and biking trails opened over the weekend in the 1.5-mile Bosque and Upper Bee green areas of the Orange County Great Park.

Santa Rosa residents are pressing the city to do more to improve safety on one of the more dangerous roads for bike riders and pedestrians — one that’s already claimed five lives in the past year.

After working for other Bay Area bakeries, an Oakland man has struck out on his own, baking bread at home and making his deliveries by bicycle.

 

National

A writer for the Sierra Club says trust is stronger than a Kryptonite lock, asking strangers to keep an eye on his bike instead of using a lock. Um, sure. What could possibly go wrong?

She gets it. A writer for Bicycling tells bike shops to lose the attitude and stop treating customers like garbage.

What were you doing when you were seven years old? A Seattle boy and his father are biking across the US, as he attempts to set a record for the youngest cross-country bicyclist.

They get it too. Wichita Falls TX considers changing two local laws, including a “must-use” bike path ordinance, in pursuit of a Bicycle Friendly Community designation.

An Iowa man made his getaway to another state by bike after stabbing another man in the arm, hightailing it from Council Bluffs, Iowa to Omaha, Nebraska. All of 5.5 miles and a 32-minute ride, according to Google Maps.

Republicans in the Minnesota Senate are accused of open hostility to bicycles as a form of transportation, after insisting on removing nearly all references to bicycles from a transportation bill that was passed with unanimous support from all sides in the House.

A fire in a New York bodega is blamed on an exploding delivery ebike battery.

Evidently, LA Councilmember Gil Cedillo has philosophical kin in DC, as a Washington councilmember questions the need for any bike lanes in his district — despite suffering the highest number of traffic deaths in the city this year.

Over 100 bicyclists ride for peace on the streets in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

A Tallahassee FL columnist says bike riders shouldn’t feel safer riding in a big city than they do there, telling local drivers “we’re better than this.”

Horrible news from Florida, where a hit-and-run driver killed two bicyclists in a single collision; police have found the vehicle, but are still looking for the coward behind the wheel.

Mountain biking the hurricane ravaged trails of Puerto Rico.

 

International

The second Bicycle Architecture Biennale will celebrate the world’s “wow-factor” bicycling infrastructure and examine how bicycling will shape cities of the future.

A cargo bike-riding British Columbia mom says protected bike lanes are key to city transportation.

London’s cycling commissioner says someone will die after councillors from the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea pulled their support for a two-way curb-protected bikeway through Notting Hill, based on complaints from a handful of people.

The father of a fallen bicyclist calls for bike riders to be banned from the English highway where he was killed; the local council agrees, saying improving safety would just encourage more people to ride there.

No bias here. Ten percent of drivers violated the 50 mph speed limit in a British village, yet they want to focus on the dangers posed by bike riders zooming by at a relatively pokey 35 mph.

No bias here, either. A Brit commuter was ordered to “get out of this fucking station now!” when he asked for a band-aid for his bleeding wrist, after falling off his bicycle on the way to the train station.

A bike rider in the UK got off with a relative slap on the wrist when he was jailed for just 16 months for fleeing the scene after crashing into a 70-year old woman as she was crossing the street, leaving her with life-threatening injuries. He pled guilty to a 150-year old law against “wanton and furious cycling,” which carries a maximum of two years behind bars.

British cycling commissioners say painted bike lanes are a waste of money, and call on the country to spend income from traffic fines on improving road safety.

An Irish political writer says he nearly became a statistic when a driver cut into the bike lane he was riding in, saying he was lucky this time, but bike riders can’t count on luck. Maybe they should start by lowering the speed limit to a more reasonable level, then try ticketing anyone who violates it, regardless of how they travel.

An Irish County is going to issue numbered license plates to bicyclists, saying it’s for their own good. No, really.

A writer for The Guardian explores the 100-mile Berliner Mauerweg bike trail tracing the route of the former Berlin Wall 30 years after its fall.

Here’s your chance to explore the countryside of lovely Transylvania by bike. But maybe replace that banana in your pocket with a few cloves of garlic just to be safe.

Bicyclists in Zagreb, Croatia will soon get a 75-mile bicycle highway.

An Indian newspaper calls ebikes the next evolution of mobility, suggesting they’re an alternative to polluting scooters and motorbikes.

A New Zealand health and parenting website talks with Julie Ann Genter, the parliament member who famously rode her bike to the hospital to give birth last year.

A Kiwi professor calls for a crackdown on ebike users on bike trails, after he suffered a serious brain injury in a head-on collision with one.

An writer in Kuala Lumpur discovers that riding on the city’s new blue bike lane loop during the evening rush hour is easier said than done.

 

Competitive Cycling

Chris Froome says he’s lucky to be alive after hitting the wall — literally — crashing into the side of a house at 37 mph when a gust of wind hit his time trial bike. Shaken friend, competitor and fellow Brit Dan Martin thought he was dead after witnessing the crash from a trailing car.

Speaking of the four-time Tour de France winner, the director of the Vuelta a España wants to hand the title for the 2011 race to first runner-up Froome if the doping violation is upheld against General Classification winner Juan José Cobo, to avoid a situation like the many vacant titles in the doping era Tour after Lance, Landis and Contador were stripped of their titles.

Danish pro Jakob Fuglsang won the eight stage Critérium du Dauphiné, finishing ahead of American Tejay van Garderen.

VeloNews attends the unveiling of a Boulder CO monument honoring the late, great Red Zinger/Coors Classic stage race, recalling why it remains a legend over 30 years after its demise. As well it should bento only providing a stage for the best riders from around the world, but also giving women racers a near-equal platform racing slightly shorter distances on the same stages.

 

Finally…

When your ride to work is great, but the ride home feels like football players have been pounding on you all day. Sometimes it’s not the drivers you have to worry about.

And who needs a marching band when you can ride bikes, instead.

Morning Links: The bikes that won the war, CA projects anti-Vision Zero jump in traffic deaths, and Jump Bike rates jump

Seventy-five years ago today, my dad was on his fifth day in France, after landing in Normandy on D-Day+3.

That is, three days after the bloody landing on Normandy Beach that marked the beginning of the end for Nazi Germany.

He was lucky that, as an MP, he was stationed mostly behind the front lines.

Mostly being the key word.

No so for the men of the 390th Bomber Group stationed in Suffolk, England.

David Drexler reports how they relied on bikes when they weren’t in the skies over Germany.

I am recently back from my trip to Tucson, Arizona.

In Tucson is the Pima Air and Space Museum — a phenomenal place — the Smithsonian of the West for Air History.

There is a special Hanger for the 390th Bombing Group who are alleged to have been instrumental in winning WWII:

“In the spring of 1943, the 390th Bomb Group was activated in Blythe, California with four squadrons: the 568th, 569th, 570th, and 571st. In July, the Group’s air and ground troops were assigned to the 8th Air Force and dispatched to Suffolk, England for missions over Europe. The 390th’s B-17 Flying Fortresses bombed aircraft factories, bridges and oil refineries. A total of 714 airmen sacrificed their lives in the cause of freedom.”

Part of the 390th Museum is a tribute to the importance of the bicycle in WWII along with an actual bicycle that was used in England during the War.

I like the Brooks Seat — not a lot has changed in 75 years for Brooks.

I’m always struck by just how young the men and women we sent to war were, a bunch of kids who literally saved the world.

And just how many never returned.

………

So much for Vision Zero.

Streetsblog reports that states are responding to a new federal government program to cut traffic deaths by projecting an increase instead.

Including right here in the late, great Golden State, where state officials say efforts to improve safety will result in an increase of 412 deaths a year, on top of the state’s already too high carnage on the streets.

Never mind that the projections are supposed to be aspirational, and attainable.

In that case, why stop at 412? California can easily attain even more blood on the streets just by doing what we’re already doing right now.

That’s something to aspire to, right?

………

Prices just jumped for one leading brand of dockless ebikes and scooters.

………

Brandi DAmore forwards Bike Index’s take on that stolen bike they helped recover 12 years after it went missing.

recovery

BIKE INDEX RECOVERS A BIKE STOLEN 12 YEARS AGO

“No one knows what use the bike performed during the years it was missing but, 12 years later, its new mission is to transport my son to perform some very important work.”

This might be a new record. 12 years after its theft in Iowa City, a bike has returned to its owner thanks to Bike Index. Picking up right where he left off, the bike’s owner now uses it to commute around Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago where he works. Bike Index has recovered over $8 million in stolen bikes. Make sure your bike has the best chance of returning to you if it’s stolen – register your bike on BIke Index right now.

………

Local

Metro hosts another of their BEST Rides tomorrow, along with People for Mobility Justice and TRUST South LA, as they celebrate Juneteenth by visiting venues along Central Ave from the legendary Green Book, which lists motels and other sites where blacks were welcome during America’s more openly racist past.

The Long Beach Post profiles the owner of the New York-based Propel ebike shop, which is opening its second location on Broadway in Long Beach. Someone tell him they need to advertise here on BikinginLA. No, go ahead, I’ll wait.

 

State

The California Senate Transportation Committee met to discuss a number of bills, including improving bike lane guidance at intersections. Meanwhile, Active SGV offers an update on the bills they currently support in the legislature.

San Diego’s Blind Stoker’s Club enables visually impaired bike riders to pedal throughout the county on the back of a tandem, with a sighted rider up front.

Sports Illustrated says we never really knew NFL star Kellen Winslow II, following his conviction for rape and indecent exposure in San Diego; he was caught in part by Strava data that put his bike near one of the assaults.

Sad news from Lake Elsinore, where a 19-year old man was killed riding his skateboard in a Lake Elsinore bike lane. Evidently, painted bike lanes aren’t any safer for people on skateboards than they are for people on bikes.

An 81-year old ‘bent rider has filed suit against the San Luis Obispo County, the county airport, Caltrans and the FAA after a gust of jet blast allegedly knocked him off his bike and into traffic, resulting in severe injuries and damage to his bike.

San Raphael has opened a new bike and pedestrian bridge across a canal.

A local paper offers more on the life and death of famed Petaluma bespoke framebuilder Bruce Gordon.

A Redding woman repeatedly stabbed a man, leaving him with life-threatening injuries, then calmly rode off on her cruiser bike.

 

National

Bike Snob confesses to riding on the sidewalk with his kids. And says if your city is “plagued by those pesky sidewalk cyclists,” it means its bike infrastructure totally sucks.

Tesla’s new Enhanced Summon feature allows the car to maneuver out of parking spots and come to the driver, instead of the other way around. So who cares if it can’t recognize narrow objects like people on bicycles?

Three groups of riders from my college fraternity will set out from Santa Monica, San Francisco and Seattle to ride across the US this summer, and raise three-quarter of a million dollars for disability awareness.

Bicycling’s Selene Yeager offers tips to build up the strength you need to ride hills. I learned to conquer hills by riding up the steepest one I could find as far as I could go, then coming back the next day and doing it again, going a little further each time until I could ride it without stopping.

Your next ebike could charge itself as you ride, giving you almost unlimited range.

Oregon is moving forward with their version of an Idaho Stop law, allowing riders to treat stop signs as yields, but still stopping for red lights.

Seattle sort of responds to complaints from bicyclists about cuts to the city’s new bike plan, but not really.

Once ski season is over, Aspen CO turns to thoughts of singletrack.

A Denver bike shop gave a new bicycle to a little girl, after a TV station aired a story about the girl selling lemonade to replace her stolen bike.

That’s more like it. A new ordinance in Wichita Falls TX requires drivers to change lanes to pass vulnerable road users, including bike riders, or slow 20 mph below the speed limit to pass.

Sounds like fun. An annual Milwaukee bike ride celebrates both Mexican and Polish culture with a rolling norteña and polka party.

After St. Paul MN police were unable to recover a teenage boy’s stolen bike, despite arresting the thief, they replaced it through a program designed to do exactly that.

A local paper says a South Bend IN bike delivery rider for Jimmy John’s isn’t about to put on the brakes. Not that his bike has any.

That’s more like it too. A Maine bike coalition reminds drivers that state law allows bicyclists to ride anywhere in the traffic lane where they feel safest.

If you’re going to build a bike path that ends at the airport, you might want to inform the FAA — as a Massachusetts town learned the hard way.

New York’s police commissioner remains trapped in the last century, saying he opposes attempts to legalize ebikes and e-scooters because he’s not sure they’re safe. If that’s the criteria he’s going to use, he probably supports banning cars, too.

 

International

An English bike rider says after a car driver apologized for a near collision, a bus driver traveling in the opposite direction pulled up next to them and blamed her for the close call, calling her a homophobic slur in the process.

The UK’s Cycle to Work program now offers commuters up to 39% of the cost of any new bicycle, including ebikes, to get more people riding to work. We need something like this in the US, let alone in Los Angeles – as long as it comes with safe infrastructure so people with actually use it.

A British lawyer explains why a bike rider didn’t get a farthing after he was injured hitting a pothole during a closed road sportive.

An Australian researcher says a lack of safe streets is a big reason why many people in the country don’t ride bicycles.

 

Competitive Cycling

Chris Froome underwent six hours of surgery to repair multiple broken bones, after the four-time Tour de France winner crashed into a house at 34 mph when a gust of wind caught the wheel of his time trial bike just as he took his hand off his handlebars to blow his nose. Froome was reportedly on a reconnaissance ride for Wednesday’s time-trial stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné; he’ll now miss that, as well as next month’s Tour de France. And probably everything else this year.

Speaking of Froome, he’ll win the 2011 Vuelta from his room in the ICU, because erstwhile champ Juan Jose Cobo was retroactively busted for doping.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to steal a bike in Canada, put on a helmet first. Even drivers think drivers are being more aggressive abound bike riders.

And now you can help clean up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch by wearing a piece of it on your head when you ride.

 

Morning Links: A mea culpa, discussion of bikes & climate change in the ‘Bu, and murder change for speeding NoHo driver

Mea culpa. Mea culpa. Mea maxima culpa.

Let me start with a profound apology for yesterday’s unexcused absence.

Usually when my blood sugar crashes, I get warning signs, like uncontrollable shaking or yawning, sleepiness, or the cold sweats, that allow me to catch it before it’s too late.

But sometimes, none of those thing happen. And that’s when it’s most dangerous, when I have no idea that my blood sugar has dropped to dangerous levels.

That’s what happened Tuesday night.

When I checked my blood sugar before taking the Corgi out for her last walk of the day, I felt fine. So I was shocked to discover it was just 53 mg/dl.

Normal for you is around 100; normal for me, as a diabetic, is 100 to 150.

And much below 50, for too long, is dead.

In fact, that’s the point where my doctor has instructed my wife to get me to the ER, stat, if I can’t get it back up.

I was just four points from that before I even knew there was a problem.

Fortunately, a fig bar and a bowl of ice cream got me back up around 80 mg/dl  within half an hour.

And no, the irony is not lost on me that my life-saving medication is dessert for anyone else.

But the damage was done.

The symptoms, when they finally came, hit with the impact of a failed parachute.

Then once I got that under control, I passed out. Except this time, it didn’t last for just an hour or two, allowing me to resume work once I woke up.

Instead, it was 4:30 in the morning before I could rouse myself just to make it from the couch to the bed. Then almost noon before I woke up enough to take the Corgi out, sleeping through a number of alarm clocks and a phone call from my wife along the way.

Not to mention one hell of a headache.

So my apologies for not posting yesterday, or even posting about why I wasn’t posting. But I was in no shape to write anything.

And frankly, too out of it to care.

………

On the other hand, there’s one bit of good news before we get started.

My physical therapist has given me the okay to actually ride my bike out on the street, instead of on the trainer, once I feel up to it.

Problem is, I don’t feel up to it right now.

If I lived in a quieter neighborhood, or had better access to an offroad path like the LA River of Ballona Creek, I’d give it a try.

But here in Hollywood, with its heavy traffic and almost complete lack of bicycling infrastructure, I need a lot more strength in my newly repair leg before I’m confident enough to mix it up with LA drivers.

And don’t even get me started on those laughable sharrows on Vine Street.

I’m getting stronger every day now, though, and hopefully I’ll have enough confidence in my new knee to give it a try in the next week or two.

Because we definitely won’t be getting any new bike lanes anytime soon.

………

A team of UCLA “climate explorers” is riding from Oakland to Los Angeles as we speak, to learn “first-hand about climate change impacts and solutions.”

They’ll pitstop in Malibu on Saturday, June 22nd for a panel discussion about climate change and sustainability.

And presumably, what they learned along the way.

………

Now that’s more like it.

A 24-year old woman faces murder and hit-and-run charges for the high-speed crash that killed a motor scooter rider in North Hollywood last week.

Now if we could just see charges like that when someone runs a bicycle rider down.

………

A British bike rider blocked a pair of angry salmon motorists from taking a short cut on the wrong side of the road. And got so many pats on the back from fellow bike riders and passing drivers he may not be able to wear a backpack for a few weeks.

Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the heads-up.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

Police are looking for whoever strung rope at varying heights in several places along a Newport RI bike path with “the intent to cause harm.”

………

Local

LA Councilmember Paul Koretz tries to shove the genie back in the bottle, declaring his fevered desire to get rid of e-scooters entirely, while calling them anti-Vision Zero. In which case he should support them, since he’s been fighting Vision Zero since the beginning. And if he really wants to talk anti-Vision Zero, wait until he hears about cars.

Long Beach responds to drivers complaints about the new Broadway parking-protected bike lanes by ending street-sweeping in favor of sweeping just the bike lanes, and restoring 65 parking spaces.

CiclaValley shows you the sights and sounds of PedalFest 2019. And he’s leading a Pacifico Mountain Ride for Gravel Bike California on June 30th.

 

State

Lyft is dumping their association with Ford and the Ford GoBike brand for their Bay Area bikeshare system, and will bring their new black and pink ebikes to San Jose next.

Bird buys its way into the San Francisco e-scooter market by buying scooter competitor Scoot, after being blocked out by the city.

Bicycling remembers Petaluma master framebuilder Bruce Gordon, who passed away last Friday.

A Modesto paper calls Yosemite’s bike trails among the park’s best kept secrets.

 

National

Bicycling lists eleven things you need to start riding on gravel. Or you could just get a bike, put wider tires on it, and ask CiclaValley to take you for a ride.

Bike lawyer Bob Mionske is back with advice for how to deal with an assault by an unfunny prankster. Best advice — always ride with a bike cam. I mount mine on my helmet; the minimal neck strain is offset by the ability to focus it anywhere I turn my head.

Your next ebike could be made of plastic.

An Oregon man is riding across the US in memory of a friend who died of breast cancer — despite suffering seven strokes himself.

Great idea. Denver public libraries will now allow you to check out a bike repair kit, including tools and a tire pump.

Bike cops in an Illinois town will now be patrolling the streets on a pair of massive, “military-grade” ebikes.

A Michigan bike rider is shocked when an SUV driver rear-ends his bike — then blames him for the crash before fleeing the scene.

Louisville KY police recover a boy’s brand new bike after it was stolen, and personally deliver it to the emergency room where he was taken for apparently unrelated injuries.

He gets it. A Nashville op-ed writer says don’t give up on e-scooters, following calls to ban them after a man was killed.

Best argument so far for not stopping at a red light. A Chattanooga bike rider was injured when someone walked up and shot him as he was stopped at an intersection.

Tuesday night races are back on at a defunct Brooklyn naval air base after nearly getting priced out of existence.

City Limits says if New York’s Vision Zero isn’t working, blame the lack of consequences for drivers who hit bike riders and pedestrians.

New York rapper A$AP Ferg is one of us, partnering with Redline to market his own limited-edition line of BMX bikes showcasing his own mad skills.

A New York Streetsblog editor picks the best bikes for foldie lovers on a budget, testing “a bunch” of bikes to pick the best folding bikes for under $1,500.

An op-ed in the Philadelphia Inquirer says a bill under consideration to legalize parking-protected bike lanes in Pennsylvania would improve safety for everyone, while helping to improve people’s heart health.

You’ve got to be kidding. The hit-and-run driver who fled after crashing into a Charleston SC pedicab while driving with a BAC of .24 — three times the legal alcohol limit — walked with less than a slap on the wrist, as a judge sentenced her to a fine and a lousy 48 hours of community service. If you want to know why people keep dying on our streets, this is it.

Best product placement ever. A Florida bike rider refuses to go to the hospital after he was hit by a truck driver until someone bought him a Coke. They did, and he did.

 

International

National Geographic gets it, saying bikes are the best way to tour cities around globe. And good for the planet, too.

Saskatoon takes a big step backward, ripping out protected bike lanes because the city’s drivers somehow couldn’t figure them out, and wanted more parking places, anyway.

An Ottawa bike rider made the point the hard way when he was hit by a driver just blocks from a protest at city hall calling for safer streets.

A Berlin group is helping refugee and migrant women gain confidence and independence by learning to ride a bike.

When Aussie bike riders post a video of crashes and near misses, commenters are quick to blame the people on two wheels. Even though a kangaroo caused one of them.

A writer for Cycling Tips pulls out his deerstalker hat and pipe to uncover the strange tale behind the rapid rise and sudden disappearance of disruptive Chinese smart bike maker SpeedX.

 

Competitive Cycling

Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome suffered a major setback in his quest for a fifth title when he crashed into the side of a house at high speed. Froome had just finished a descent when he took his hand off his handlebars to blow his nose, and a sudden gust of wind blew him off the road; he’s currently in intensive care with undisclosed injuries.

VeloNews looks at LA’s Justin Williams and his new Legion of Los Angeles cycling team following his two stage wins and second place finish in last weekend’s Tulsa Tough.

Maybe the thief just wanted to take a joy ride. The Jumbo-Visma cycling team was victimized by a bike thief who struck when the team mechanic turned his back for a moment, then left the distinctive looking bike on the side of the road the next day.

 

Finally…

Pedal harder, or no Netflix for you. On the other hand, how slow can you go?

And you might want to hold off on using the New Orleans bikeshare for awhile.

 

Morning Links: AP e-scooter panic, LA is (not) famous for road diets, and Cedillo thinks people in CD1 don’t need scooters

Let’s start with this insightful look at the panicked Associated Press story we mentioned last week about the dangers of e-scooters, from someone who prefers to remain anonymous.

Here’s an excerpt from the AP story.

Andrew Hardy was crossing the street on an electric scooter in downtown Los Angeles when a car struck him at 50 miles per hour and flung him 15 feet in the air before he smacked his head on the pavement and fell unconscious.

And here’s what our anonymous commenter had to say in response.

The car was going 50 in DTLA, an area where it’s really hard and really illegal to drive 50 mph, and that is the last mention of an obviously speeding car. Instead, it gave 5 paragraphs to helmet use. It outlines the dangers of sidewalk riding (which are valid), but gives no space for discussion of weak infrastructure or vehicle speed that make people feel unsafe riding on the streets. It closes with a quote on how “companies are just dumping in scooters in cities” from Drew Howerton, a 19-year old who visited Austin last October and may not have the most informed view of municipal scooter regulation.

So, to sum it up, scooters are the problem, cars are never the problem and the reporter didn’t interview any subject matter experts. War on cars? Only in your dreams.

Since it is AP, this lazy reporting made its way into nearly every local media outlet in the country.

………

In today’s laugh out loud moment, a Detroit paper says more road diets and bike lanes are coming to the metro area, with supporters saying it calms traffic and opponents trotting out the old war on cars canard.

And one commenter opposes the road diets by insisting “This isn’t LA…”

Never mind that road diets haven’t exactly been welcomed with open arms here, either.

………

The LA City Council Transportation Committee will meet Wednesday afternoon, squeezing in discussion, amid all the micro-restrictions on truck parking and idling, of actually maybe doing something to close the Northvale Gap on the Expo Bike Path, along with banning dockless bikeshare and scooters in Gil Cedillo’s Council District 1.

Because evidently, only people in wealthier districts deserve inexpensive, convenient transportation options.

“Let them drive cars” seems to be Cedillo’s equivalent of “Let them eat cake.”

Meanwhile, Metro will host a series of meetings this week in the San Fernando Valley to consider what streets transit riders will use to get to the coming light rail line on Van Nuys Blvd — with the knowledge that more people are likely to arrive by bike or on foot than in cars.

The first meeting will take place tonight in San Fernando, followed by Van Nuys on Wednesday and Panorama City on Saturday.

………

Tern is giving away a trip for two to to Los Angeles for the August Meet the Hollywoods CicLAvia.

Sorry Angelenos, you’re already here.

………

Now here’s a bicycle tour to add to my own bike bucket list — a 550-mile ride to visit all six Belgian Trappist breweries.

Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the heads-up.

………

The war on bikes may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

Anti-bike terrorists strike again, stringing a wire across a UK mountain bike trail at neck height — something that could be fatal if it caught an unsuspecting rider by surprise.

A British bike rider was lucky to stay on his bike and escape injury when he was the victim of an attack with a paintball fired by a slingshot from a passing car.

When I started writing about the war on bikes, stories like this came along maybe once or twice every few weeks; now they’re a daily occurrence. And like today, often more than one.

………

Local

City officials have finally broken ground on the long-planned, 400-foot orange Taylor Yard Bicycle and Pedestrian Bridge connecting Cypress Park and Elysian Valley across the L.A. River; the $20.6 million bridge has been in the works for three decades. And probably would have cost a lot less if they’d moved forward with it then.

A Venice writer tries all the e-scooters, and says most are awful. But Wheels wins, with Bird first runner-up.

CiclaValley takes a bike tour of LA landmarks. And yet, he rides right past my apartment and doesn’t bother to say hi.

A Duarte bike rider was shot in the elbow Saturday evening when a car pulled up next to him; he refused to cooperate with investigators.

 

State

California Streetsblog says it’s time to buy your tickets for the biennial California Bike Summit hosted by Calbike, which just happens to be in Los Angeles this time. I attended the first one, which was also in LA. And it was definitely worth it.

Kellen Winslow II has been convicted of rape, indecent exposure and lewd conduct in a series of San Diego assaults, while jurors remain deadlocked on eight other counts; the former NFL star was caught in part because Strava placed his bicycle near the site of one of the attacks

Santa Barbara police will be conducting yet another bike and pedestrian safety operation today. As always, ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limit line if you find yourself riding there.

Quartz says Lyft’s lawsuit against San Francisco shows they don’t care about reducing the number of cars on the road, despite talk from the company’s leadership.

 

National

No surprise here. Months after Seattle cancelled plan for a road diet and bike lanes on a dangerous street, complaints are piling up about unsafe driving and dangerous conditions for people on bicycles. It’s almost as if maybe there might have been a reason for the road diet in the first place.

Kansas officials say that with riders from the Trans American Bike Race passing through the state, it’s a reminder for people to drive safely around bike riders, after two Trans Am competitors were killed by Kansas motorists in the past two years.

A Dallas newspaper offers advice to the city’s newly elected mayor. And fixing sidewalks and building bike lanes top the list.

This is why people keep dying on our streets. A little girl in Fargo ND suffered non-life threatening injuries when a driver left-crossed the bike her mother was riding, and crashed into the bike trailer she was riding in, claiming he somehow didn’t see them. So the person behind the wheel drove off with a crappy $20 ticket for failing to yield.

A Milwaukee newspaper offers advice on how to keep your bike safe, including registering it for free with Bike Index.

Must have been an autonomous car. A Wisconsin TV station somehow manages to write 250 words about a hit-and-run that seriously injured a woman riding a bike, without ever mentioning the possibility, however remote, that the car may have had a driver.

Bike riders aren’t even protected on separated bike paths, as a Chicago driver was injured when his car flew off the roadway and onto the bike path along the city’s Lake Shore Drive. Fortunately, he appears to have missed anyone on the popular pathway.

The off-duty New York firefighter who deliberately attempted to run over the bike rider he nearly hit while running a red light has finally been arrested by the NYPD on charges of reckless endangerment and driving without a license. Although he should have been charged with assault with a deadly weapon, which is what the crime really calls for, at a bare minimum.

A New York physician says the best way to prevent injuries is for kids to wear a helmet and obey the rules of the road when they ride a bike or scooter. Although giving them safer places to ride couldn’t hurt.

Brooklyn safety advocates say traffic violence has become an epidemic in the south part of the borough — as the next story illustrates.

A 22-year old Brooklyn driver faces charges for killing an ebike rider while allegedly speeding and driving under the influence — with her four-year old son in the back seat. The victim was a hard-working Bangladeshi refugee who had been granted political asylum in the US.

A 14-year old New Jersey girl was lucky to escape with a few scrapes when her bike was struck by a driver who was being pursued by police; police are still looking for him after he escaped following the crash.

A conservative Maryland podcast says “transit activists are just like cycling activists in their casual relationship with the truth and their meltdowns when somebody dare says ‘no.'” Something tells me those transit and bike advocates may have a better relationship to the truth than the people behind the podcast care to confess.

 

International

A Kiwi writer bikes Bolivia’s Death Road. Seriously, if the road had any other name, hardly anyone would bother, regardless of how scenic or challenging it might be.

Canadian Cycling Magazine provides warning signs that you may love your bike more than your partner. I may not love my bike more that my wife, but we have been together a lot longer.

Good question. A Vancouver city planner and urbanist asks if only experienced bicyclists feel safe in a painted bike lane, is it really a bike lane at all? Then again, as someone who lives in Hollywood, I’d settle for any bike lanes right now — good, bad or otherwise.

A Saskatchewan letter writer says separating bikes and motor vehicles is safer for everyone, because many drivers don’t follow the rules, either.

London author Jools Walker talks biking while black, and how her book is getting more women on bikes.

A British op-ed writer says it may seem radical, but calm down and try talking to teenagers like human beings for a change. And just leave the kids on ride-outs alone, already.

Life is cheap in Australia, where a truck driver walked without a single day behind bars for killing a bike rider because… wait for it… the sun was in his eyes, he was busy adjusting his visor, and he didn’t hear the ruble strips on the side of the road.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling examines how a former ultrarunner with limited bike racing experience and no cycling coach managed to win the world’s premier gravel race.

A new partnership has been established between The Cyclist’s Alliance and the HeadSmart Sports Concussion Programme to study the problem of concussions in the women’s pro cycling peloton.

Victories by Los Angeles-based cyclist Justin Williams in two of the stages of the Tulsa Tough cycling race has put his new Legion of Los Angeles team on the national map; the team is dedicated to “increasing diversity (and) encouraging inclusion” in elite cycling.

 

Finally…

No one likes when drivers park in bike lanes, but don’t whack their cars with your scooter. Apparently Kylie Jenner and friend are a few days late for the World Near-Naked Bike Ride — though someone should tell them bikes work better with just one person per seat.

And it says something when even one of LA’s most bike-friendly city councilmembers doesn’t feel safe riding on the street with his kids.

 

Morning Links: AIDS/LifeCycle Ride arrives with Pride, Gotcha wants ya, and World Naked Bike Ride around the world

Over 2,000 bike riders rolled up to LA’s Fairfax High School on Saturday during LA Pride celebrations, ending the 545-mile AIDS/LifeCycle ride that began in San Francisco last Sunday.

US Olympic freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy was the top fund-raiser for the ride, bringing in over $238,000 to benefit the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, and HIV/AIDS services at the Los Angeles LGBT Center.

………

New San Gabriel Valley e-bikeshare provider Gotcha is looking to fill several positions in the LA/SGV area to help get the system up and running, including —

I might consider the first one, but only if they changed the title to Minister of Propaganda.

………

Bike riders around the world dare to go bare for the World Naked Bike Ride, calling for better bike safety by asking “Can you see me now?”

Rides took place in ChicagoClevelandNew Orleans, Mexico City, London and throughout the UK,

Meanwhile, bike riders in Laredo, Texas kept their clothes on while lighting themselves up.

But seriously, are you really naked if you’re armed to the teeth?

………

This is who we share the roads with.

A North Hollywood motor scooter rider was killed by a speeding driver while stopped at a red light, who proceeded to crash into several parked vehicles after fleeing the scene, then tried to walk away after her car caught on fire.

Police said it was unclear if drugs or alcohol were involved, demonstrating that they really do have a sense of humor.

Thanks to Evan Burbridge for the heads-up.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

An off-duty New York firefighter used his car as a weapon to deliberately try to run over a bike rider after smashing the rider’s cell phone, when the bicyclist had the audacity to complain about nearly getting run down by the red light-running motorist. Naturally the driver says it’s no big deal.

And someone intentionally placed an old railroad tie across the entrance to a Portland bike path in an apparent attempt to injure riders.

Seriously, this shit has got to stop.

………

Local

City  Councilmember Bob Blumenfield say the new bike lanes on Winnetka Ave  “won’t prevent all accidents, but it certainly will save some lives.” The new lanes close the gap where Ignacio Sanchez Navarro was killed by a hit-and-run driver two years ago.

Architectural leaders say LA architects have to step up their game, like designing more buildings to accommodate bicycles, because cars may be a thing of the past due to the city’s “notorious traffic congestion.” We can only hope.

Evidently, riding a bicycle on LA freeways is a thing now.

A meeting will be held tomorrow in Pico Rivera to discuss the city’s first protected bikeway.

A Santa Clarita writer looks at the faces behind the area’s many roadside memorials, including ghost bikes for Teresa Mae Angeli and Rod Bennett.

 

State

San Diego city planners are refining efforts to make the city’s iconic Mission Blvd safer and more welcoming to people, whether they travel on two feet or two wheels.

A salmon cyclist was luck to escape with just a broken leg when he was hit by a driver in San Diego; he also had a passenger on his bike, who wasn’t injured.

Great idea. Chico residents celebrate the city’s 10th annual Bicycle Music Festival by riding to several locations to hear live music, all the while being serenaded by a musician on a bike, amplified with a pedal-powered generator.

Bike author Richard Fox offers safer alternatives to get around locations where bike riders were killed in the Coachella Valley.

Sad news from Bakersfield, where an elderly man riding a bicycle was killed in a collision.

Roughly 100 Santa Barbara teens turned out for a Ride Out on Saturday, sending drivers into a tizzy; good thing they didn’t try it today, when the city is conducting a bike and pedestrian safety sting.

A Santa Cruz writer says you can reduce your carbon footprint by riding a bikeshare ebike.

 

National

The Flagstaff AZ city council backed off plans to ban ebikes from gravel trails, and will continue to allow soused riders to pedal home.

Boulder CO has placed a monument in a local park to honor the late, great Red Zinger Bicycle Classic and the legendary Coors Classic bike races.

The former head of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Grizzly Bear Recovery Team says yes, mountain bikers pose a grave threat to grizzly bears in the Yellowstone area.

Young descendants of the Cherokee tribe made their way through Southern Illinois on the Remember the Removal bike ride, retracing the route taken by tribal members in the infamously brutal Trail of Tears.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a disabled Michigan man’s new bicycle just minutes after he bought it.

Louisville KY bicyclists rode to honor Muhammad Ali, the self-proclaimed greatest fighter of all time.

Maine bike riders say the way to deal with gridlock on Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park is to take your bike and leave the car at home. But they don’t expect tourists to take that advice.

Nice piece in the New York Times profiling a historic black bike club in Brooklyn that may have produced America’s next track cycling star. Thanks to George Wolfberg for the heads-up.

WaPo says your GPS is breaking your brain.

No surprise here. A poll of DC residents shows drivers are worse than bike riders and pedestrians — or scooter riders, for that matter — when it comes to breaking traffic laws. Meanwhile, a DC writer says it’s time to take a stand against car supremacy, and dethrone cars from their policy throne.

A Florida bicyclist says it was the camaraderie and sense of belonging he found with his fellow bike riders that got him through chemo.

 

International

Mercedes F1 driver Lewis Hamilton is one of us, relaxing between races by riding his mountain bike.

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation says studies show bike lanes boost urban businesses.

No bias here. Calgary bike riders caught riding just 6 mph over the city’s 12.4 mph bike path speed limit could face a $400 fine; a driver would have to be doing nearly 20 mph over the limit to face a fine that high.

Montreal merchants are carefully aiming a shotgun at their feet by demanding the cancellation of plans for a bike lane that would result in the removal 275 parking spots. Even though studies consistently show bike lanes are good for business, and bike riders spend more per month than drivers do; see the CBC report two stories up.

A writer for The Guardian says even riding the French Alps is no sweat on an ebike. Meanwhile, another article in the paper recommends some of Europe’s best easy bicycling holidays.

A bronze Mahatma Gandhi rides a bicycle to promote food safety. Even if he does look more like Dobby in the photo.

For years, we’ve joked about airbags for bike riders. You can stop joking now, thanks to an Indian inventor.

Rising Palestinian cycling champ Alaa al-Dali is making a remarkable comeback as a paracyclist after losing a leg to an Israeli sniper

Unbelievable. An 18-year old Saudi Arabian boy faces beheading for leading a bike protest during the Arab Spring when he was just ten years old. Yes, ten.

A South African bike rider learns the hard way that there’s a lot we don’t know about concussions after losing consciousness for several minutes after a fall on her way home.

An Australian father reached out and tried to pull his 12-year old son out of the way as a van driver careened out of control, smashing into them and critically injuring a pedestrian. Although it might be nice if the writer didn’t wait until the very end to even mention that the van had a driver. And then only in passing.

It takes a real schmuck to steal a Kiwi woman’s bicycle as she’s trying to rescue a loose goat.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews considers the women who ride the Dirty Kanza.

What do you do if you crash your bike in sight of the finish line? Just make a run for it.

 

Finally…

If someone steals your bike, just pull a page from Reservoir Dogs. What do you do if you’re diagnosed with a grave medical condition? Ride a ‘bent across the US, of course.

And don’t try to snatch the Governator’s bike — at least not when his bodyguards are on duty.

Thanks to Evan Burbridge for that last one.

 

Morning Links: Upcoming bike events, auf Deutsch look at LA bicycling, and right hooks and left crosses on the Orange Line

Let’s kick things off with a handful of upcoming bike events.

On Sunday you can ride the COLT without fears of getting bucked off at the free Chatsworth Orange Line Tour bike rally and health walk.

The LA Design Festival will talk bikes on the 19th of this month, with a Culver City panel discussion on Biking in LA — Bridging the Gap in LA’s bike network. Or many gaps, for that matter. And no, I have nothing to do with that one; the title of the talk is just a coincidence.

The next edition of CicLAvia rolls on the last day of June, with the Mid City meets Pico Union open streets event.

The popular Wolfpack Hustle Presents: 2019 Forsyth Cup returns to the Encino Velodrome for three days of bike racing on July 20th, August 17th and September 1st. There will be free admission and cash prizes, with free tacos, rice and beans for all spectators and participants courtesy of BikinginLA sponsor Thomas Forsyth.

Calbike will hold their annual California Bike Summit in Los Angeles this year from October 15th through 17th.

And as we mentioned yesterday, the 19th annual edition of LA’s favorite fundraiser ride rolls this Sunday; the LA River Ride helps fund the LACBC’s operations throughout the year, allowing them to keep fighting for you at city hall and on our streets.

Photo by Huỳnh Mai Nguyễn from Pixabay.

………

Sprechen sie Deutsch?

I was recently interviewed by a German radio reporter about the miserable conditions on the streets of Los Angeles, and the lack of any real action on Vision Zero in the city.

Then helped her correct the, um, errors in the information she got in a later interview with LA’s favorite traffic safety deniers Keep LA Moving.

Now her report has been broadcast in Austria, and posted online for a limited time.

The only problem is it’s in German, naturally.

So if you understand the language better than I do, give it a listen and let us know how it went.

………

The biggest problem with the popular Orange Line Bike Path comes when you have to cross a major street. And drivers don’t exactly cooperate, as Brayden Dakota illustrates with a trio of videos.

………

Here’s your chance to work as a Public Affairs Specialist at the Southern California Association of Governments.

Or maybe you’d rather put in your days as a Digital Communications Manager for CicLAvia.

………

Local

No bias here. An Associated Press report carried by KTLA-5 says e-scooters are like a death wish, as injuries and fatalities mount. Even though only nine people have been killed on rental scooters since the beginning of 2018, compared to 38.5 million trips last year alone — which works out to just one death for every 4.2 million trips. I’ll take those odds to Vegas any day.

 

State

Costa Mesa is moving forward with plans for a multipurpose trail along the Paularino Channel, despite residents fears it will bring “transients, vandals and criminals closer to their backyards.”

San Diego appointed long-time bike advocate Andy Hanshaw, executive director of the San Diego Bike Coalition, as to lead the city’s new Mobility Board.

An alleged bike-riding San Diego serial killer has been found competent to stand trial; Jon David Guerrero is accused of riding up behind several homeless people and jamming railroad spikes into them.

A San Luis Obispo paper examines how the city’s most popular mechanic came to die alone while riding his bicycle after years of alcohol abuse.

NorCal’s Caltrain is adding seats to the bike cars on their coming electric trains so riders can keep an eye on their bicycles.

 

National

Outside picks the best uncrowded state and national parks in every state, settling on Redwood National and State Parks in California.

After actress Selma Blair decided crowdfunding was taking too long, she gave a fellow MS patient a new mobility bike.

This is why you don’t ride your bike on a freeway. A man was killed by a hit-and-run driver while trying to exit a Houston freeway on his bicycle; no word on why he was on the freeway to begin with.

Tacoma WA police are looking for a bike-riding armed hotel robber.

A Wisconsin jury awarded the family of a fallen bicyclist over $15 million, although state law says they’ll only actually get a little over $5 million of that.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a popular disabled Ohio man’s bicycle.

Ohio bike riders rode to the courthouse for the arraignment of a 21-year old hit-and-run driver who critically injured a woman riding her bike.

An Ohio man completed a 4,200-mile bike tour around all of the Grand Lakes.

A Massachusetts man was convicted of the hit-and-run death of a bike rider and burning his car to cover up the crime, as well as getting his girlfriend to give him a false alibi.

People for Bikes flew 25 women professionals from the bike industry to DC to lobby Congress for better bike funding.

The Washington Post says maybe select civilians should be able to ticket driver who park in bike lanes or commit other parking violations.

 

International

Forget the supplements. The World Health Organization says the best way to ward off dementia is with a healthy Mediterranean diet and exercise. Like riding a bike, for instance.

A British Columbia newspaper goes heavy on the sarcasm, saying they miss the days when bike riders actually signaled their turns.

California’s popular Sea Otter Classic goes to Europe.

London’s mayor calls for a 20 mph speed limit in the central city to cut traffic deaths.

A UK newspaper says bike riders and pedestrians need to be separated on the road because they just can’t get along.

Over two-thirds of British drivers think you should have to have a license plate on your bike.

British agent Sonia d’Artois was one of us, parachuting into German-occupied France nine days before D-Day to train the resistance and carry messages and weapons on her bike.

A writer for the Guardian takes a bike tour of D-Day sites in Normandy on the 75th anniversary of the allied landing that led to the defeat of Nazi Germany less than a year later.

Aussie driver Thomas Harris got a $1,250 fine for filming himself hurling abuse at a pair of bicyclists while driving on a separated path — who turned out to be off-duty cops. Harris said a traffic offender program made him realize it’s not about him. Thanks to F. Lehnerz for the link.

Lifehacker says don’t throw your old bike away, recycle it or give it to a group to refurbish. Like the entrepreneur who’s collecting unwanted Chinese bikeshare bikes to distribute to school kids in Myanmar.

 

Finally…

Slow it down already. Smacking a bike rider with your mirror is a pretty good indication you probably didn’t obey the three-foot passing law.

And that feeling when Google’s street view immortalizes the moment you fell off your bike.

 

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