Tag Archive for bike lanes

Morning Links: Teacher arrested in Silver Lake hit-and-run, Main Street bike lane opens, and LA promises zero emissions

One quick note before we get going. 

This has been a very hard year for me.

But I have a lot to be grateful for, starting with a self-made job I truly love. And the readers who make it possible. 

Because without you, all this would just be empty words in cyberspace. 

So thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

Have a warm and loving Thanksgiving, whether you spend it with family, friends or on your own this year. And ride safely, because I want to see you back here when we return next week. 

Although you’re more than welcome to return over the weekend, when we kick off the 5th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive

And the last one that will feature the late, great Corgi as our official spokesdog.

Photo by Nikita Lyamkin from Pexels.

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Let’s start with some good news today.

The LAPD announced yesterday they’ve made an arrest in the Silver Lake hit-and-run that left a homeless bike rider severely injured last month.

Fifty-two-year old Silver Lake resident Molly Jane Hoene was taken into custody at a relative’s home in Palm Springs around 8 am Tuesday.

Meanwhile, her victim remains hospitalized in stable condition after enduring multiple surgeries.

No word on who, if anyone, will get the $25,000 reward.

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Los Angeles officials celebrated the official opening of the 1.5-mile Main Street protected bike lane, a near twin of the Spring Street bike lane one block away.

The two-way lane is positioned on the left side of the roadway to avoid conflicts with bus stops and parked cars.

Although whether it will become another parking magnet for movie production trucks and delivery vans, like the lanes on Spring Street, remains to be determined.

KNX radio reporter Margaret Carrero offered a brief look at the new lane.

Although not everyone was pleased, as our anonymous correspondent makes clear.

A couple thoughts on the bike lane.

On Saturday, before the Art Crash ride, I gave the new lanes a spin, heading north.

First. The signals. The #¢&ing signals. The bike signals are short, and you will sit there, staring agog at a green pedestrian signal, while the red bike signal mocks you. The fury will be interrupted only by the terror of close left turns by motorists.

Just north of 6th Street, I paused to reflect upon my unplanned nap (and accompanying skull fracture) at the exact location that is now the buffered zone of the new bike lane.

In the northbound Main Street lane at 5th Street, as I sat at an unnecessarily long red, thinking unkind thoughts about our traffic engineers, a left-turning motorist rolled by within inches of my front wheel. Had there been a bollard there, I imagine she would’ve scraped it, and then blamed me.

Halfway to 4th Street, I parked at the curb to drag a scooter away from its repose in the northbound bike lane. The heavy, ungrateful thing beeped angrily for having its slumber disturbed.

Upon reaching 3rd Street, I whipped left, and hit the brakes, because there’s only one bike lane, and it’s contraflow! There’s no warning about this. No “NO LEFT TURN” or bike-lane specific “ONE WAY ONLY” signage. How does design this dangerous pass review?

So, once you reach 3rd, and you wish to continue westbound, you have to either share the westbound #1 lane with cars, or cross over to the #3 lane, which has a sharrow.

AAAAUUUUGHHHH. It’s like LADOT gave their interns a couple gallons of paint, a couple gallons of whiskey, and free rein.

I want an apology.

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LA has announced a clean transportation plan designed to reduce the number of cars on the streets.

The Zero Emissions 2028 Roadmap 2.0 aims to drastically cut emissions and traffic in time for the 2028 LA Olympics, through a shift to electric cars and buses, micromobility, and yes, bicycles.

L.A. has a reputation as a car-dependent city. But the city also now has the country’s most ambitious plan for cutting emissions from transportation. In less than a decade, it wants the majority of new cars to be electric and all city buses to be electric—and it wants 20% of trips that currently happen in single-occupancy cars to shift to public transportation or active transportation like biking.

Good luck with that.

According to the plan, in just nine years, Los Angeles will have a complete fleet of electric buses, and 30% of the cars on the street will be electric.

Then there’s this.

Expanding micromobility can also help; a recent report in Santa Monica found that 49% of the trips that people were taking on electric scooters and shared bikes were replacing short trips that otherwise would have happened in cars. Some projects now are working to expand access to micromobility in neighborhoods that don’t have many options. Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator, for example, is running a pilot with a nonprofit building a solar-powered e-bike share project in the community of Huntington Park. (Other pilot projects are expanding access to electric car sharing in low-income neighborhoods; if residents use that option instead of owning cars themselves, they also may be likely to drive less.) Designing streets to make it safer to ride a bike—such as a two-way protected bike lane that was installed in downtown L.A. earlier this year—is also a key part of helping people shift away from cars.

As usual, the question is whether there will be any follow through this time.

Unlike, say, the city’s stagnant Vision Zero plan. Or the dust-ridden 2010 bike plan, or the equally ignored Mobility Plan 2035 it was subsumed into.

Or any number of other plans that were announced with great fanfare, and quickly forgotten because our elected leaders lacked the political will to actually implement them.

So we’ll see.

But considering they only have nine years to accomplish this massive transformation of the city’s streets, they’d damn well better get started.

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The Bike League issued their biennial ranking of the nation’s most bicycle friendly states — with California coming in a surprising 4th, behind Washington, Oregon and Minnesota.

Although it’s clear from the state’s individual report card that there’s a lot of room for improvement.

Starting with convincing Gavin Newsom to sign the next Complete Streets bill that crosses his desk, after vetoing it this year.

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Now that’s more like it.

Australia’s New South Wales state gets serious about distracted driving by installing new high-def cameras to catch cellphone using drivers in the act; violators will be subject to a $344 fine and five points against their license.

We desperately need these in California, where the view from a bike seat makes it seem like every other driver is holding their phones.

I was briefly in touch with the company behind these cameras, before losing their emails during my drug-addled post-surgical state earlier this year, who said they’re working to bring them to the state.

It was founded by a friend of James Rapley, the Australian man tragically killed by a stoned driver while riding a rented bike on Temescal Canyon just days before Christmas in 2013.

Personally, I can’t think of a better memorial to Rapley than legalizing them in the state where he died.

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This is what a dooring looks like.

Watch the right side of the street just two seconds in.

To make matters worse, the police apparently ticketed the victim because he wasn’t riding in the bike lane, even though he was barely conscious.

And even though drivers or their passengers are usually at fault for dooring anyone, because they’re required to only open a car door when it’s safe to do so and doesn’t interfere anyone, and only leave it open as long as necessary to exit the vehicle.

Which this driver clearly failed to do.

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Yes, handicapped people can ride bikes. Despite what angry NIMBYs insist at bike lane public meetings.

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A Chinese bike rider was very lucky to survive when he was struck in the head by an overturning truck in an extremely cringe-inducing crash.

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‘Tis the Season.

Every student at a St. Louis elementary school got a new bicycle and helmet, thanks to two men who had visited earlier in the year for a safety fair.

A pair of Florida Good Samaritans bought a new bicycle for the son of a Florida firefighter after the one he rode every day was stolen.

Lime announced they will match all donations made through their Lime Hero program between Thanksgiving and next week’s Giving Tuesday.

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Local

South Pasadena passed its $204,000 citywide bicycle parking plan.

 

State

Caltrans admits its current policies aren’t working, and commits to determining how much additional traffic new projects will generate.

Apparently, gang violence even happens in small towns, as a bike rider was the victim of a drive-by shooting in rural Sanger. And no, I didn’t know where that is, either.

Work off those Thanksgiving carbs and calories with a turkey-shaped bike route around San Francisco.

Streetsblog SF shines a light on a trench that turns into a booby trap for bike riders whenever it rains.

A Sonoma County man riding his bike with five outstanding arrest warrants learned the hard way that he can’t outrun a police dog.

 

National

He gets it. A writer for the libertarian website Reason says even though he was in a wreck while riding an e-scooter, he doesn’t want them banned, because the real danger is people in cars.

Singletracks goes behind the scenes with mountain biking Sketchy Trails artist Kristina Wayte.

A researcher says Denver kids don’t walk or bike to school because the city’s streets are so dangerous no one wants to walk or bike in them in the first place.

A self-described lifelong bicyclist in Austin TX wonders if it’s time to require licenses for bike riders. Short answer, no — for a very long list of reasons.

A bike-riding Kansas City photographer uses her Instagram account to encourage other women to take off on solo adventures.

The Second City gets New York’s seconds, as hundreds of Big Apple bikeshare ebikes were stripped of the defective electric components that caused them to randomly burst into flames, then converted to regular bikes and shipped to Chicago for their bikeshare system; both programs are operated by Lyft.

The Daily News looks at New York Mayor De Blasio’s call for bike and pedestrian mayors, otherwise known as an Office of Pedestrians and an Office of Active Transportation; Streetsblog explains why they’re necessary.

A Georgia city goes beyond state law by passing a vulnerable users ordinance that increases penalties for drivers who hit or threaten bike riders or pedestrians. Or skate boarders, motorcyclists or scooter riders, for that matter.

 

International

Mark your calendar for International Bike Shop Day on December 7th. If any SoCal bike shops are participating, drop me an email and I’ll be happy to mention it.

Bike Radar examines the best bike saddles for the coming year.

Your next handlebars could warn you when drivers are sneaking up from behind. Or barelling straight at you.

A Canadian mountain biker describes how he celebrated his 45th birthday by fighting off a grizzly bear with nothing but his bike and a tiny Buck knife.

Business is booming at Vancouver bike shops, as commuters look for alternatives in preparation for today’s transit strike.

Once again the Mounties get their man. Or men, as they bust a pair of prolific British Columbia bike thieves.

Treehugger says Toronto offers a lesson in how not to do Vision Zero. To which Los Angeles replies, hold my beer.

Business owners on a Montreal street complain about a bike lane pilot project that replaced 275 parking spaces over the summer, saying their business was down $5,000 a month, although they don’t say if that was an average of all the businesses or collectively. Instead of complaining, maybe they should do something to entice the 800 riders who pass by on the bike lanes each day to stop and come in.

British police are cleared of wrongdoing for the death of a bike rider during a high-speed pursuit after the burglar being chased backed into a 75-year old man.

The Irish Times says ebikes are still a workout and not an effortless romp.

No trademark issues here. An Aussie startup wants to get delivery workers out of their cars and onto the company’s Bolt Bikes rental ebikes. Not to be confused with Usain Bolt’s bright yellow Bolt scooters, which got here first.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling News asks the burning question of whether WorldTour cyclists should use dropper seatposts to reduce the risk from high speed descents.

America’s last remaining Tour de France winner says receiving a Congressional Gold Medal is the biggest honor of his career.

Transgender cyclist Philippa York insists the idea that trans people are going to take over women’s sport is absolutely ridiculous.

 

Finally…

Always wear your bike helmet when you rob a bank. If you never learned to ride a bike in 84 years, a stationary cycling challenge is probably for the best.

And spreading kindness and carbs with free bike-borne bread deliveries.

 

Morning Links: Unmaintained Long Beach bike lane, and riding the newly threatened Yucca Street bike boulevard

Richard Rosenthal notes one of my long standing complaints, accompanied by the photo on the left.

Cities construct protected bike lanes with great fanfare, then promptly lose interest in maintaining them.

There are brand-new bike lanes on Marina Drive at the 2nd & PCH Center in Long Beach. I ride down the center of that street with the cars rather than being in that debris-filled chute.

Simply put, it’s not enough for cities to build a bikeway, then forget all about it.

They have to be maintained on a regular basis, with particular attention paid to problems affecting that particular bike lane.

Like fallen palm fronds, for instance.

Even in a city as bike-friendly as Long Beach.

Because objects that would simply be a bump for someone on four wheels can be a major hazard to someone on two.

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CiclaValley’s Zachary Rynew takes a not-so coincidental ride along the newly threatened Yucca Street Bicycle Boulevard.

As we noted Monday, a motion before the Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council would remove a key traffic diverter from Yucca Street in Hollywood, still LA’s lone bicycle boulevard.

You can voice your opinion at tonight’s board meeting starting at 6 pm at the Will and Ariel Durant Branch Library on Sunset Blvd just west of La Brea.

Or you can email your comments, though I’m told they will only be seen by the board president, and only be read at the meeting if there’s time remaining after the comments, which is pretty unlikely.

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The LACBC is pulling the plug on today’s bike light giveaway in Koreatown.

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Costa Mesa councilmember Arlis Reynolds invites you to bring your whole family to this Sunday’s Turkey Trot cyclocross race. Including the dog.

Even if you’re just ‘cross curious.

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Local

Westbound Rowena Ave through Los Feliz and Silver Lake will face partial closures through December 6th, then be closed entirely on December 7th for work on water pipes.

LAist says LA’s most DIY cafe meets in a small park along the LA River every Wednesday morning, with rocks for seating and BYO coffee and snacks.

Santa Monica-based Bird wants you to wear a helmet when you ride their scooters, so they’re offering free ride credits when you post a selfie wearing a helmet.

Long Beach is fighting the current docked bikeshare retrenchment with plans to expand into North Long Beach.

 

State

A recent landslide means a section of the San Clemente Trail in Orange County will be closed for the foreseeable future.

San Diego’s ambitious bike network is already a year behind schedule and $79 million over budget, with only nine of the planned 77 miles completed.

A San Luis Obispo developer is doubling the width of a bike path and replacing the asphalt with longer-lasting concrete, as a condition for building a new 580-unit housing and commercial development project.

Palo Alto is finally ready to start construction on a long delayed bike and pedestrian bridge, which has nearly doubled in cost over the past five years.

Sad news from San Mateo County, where a bike rider was killed in an apparent collision on Monday.

Streetsblog offers photos from the first day of the newly opened Richmond-San Rafael Bridge bike path, stretching six miles over the San Francisco Bay.

 

National

Australia’s Bolt Bikes is coming to the US, offering an ebike subscription model allowing you to start riding for $39 a week, with a rent-to-own option for $49. Though they may run into copyright problems with Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt’s Bolt Scooters

Lime’s head of sustainability says we need to rethink how we move around our cities — starting with using more pollution-free e-scooters, of course.

Bicycling says if you’re riding for fitness, you need to ride smarter, not more.

An Oregon website offers a surprisingly practical — and affordable — holiday price guide for the bike rider on your list, ranging from extra tubes and wool socks to a new WaveCel helmet. Or you could just buy them a subscription to BikinginLA.com. No, wait, it’s already free. But still. 

Las Vegas investigators are using DNA to search for a girl who disappeared while riding her bike in 1999 when she seven years old, which would make her 29 now.

A new study from Brigham Young University concludes that ped-assist ebikes allow you to ride faster and farther with less exertion, encouraging more people to ride a bike.

A second Chicago bike rider has been killed along a dangerous stretch of road where local aldermen have blocked long-standing plans for a bike lane because “the community” doesn’t want it. Sounds like Los Angeles, where councilmembers block bike lanes based on the whims of a handful of residents.

An editorial in the Chicago Sun-Times says the city needs to invest in making the streets safer for people on bikes.

Completing our Chicago triptych, the police walked back a victim-blaming statement, saying the death of a bike rider at the hands of an unlicensed and uninsured driver had nothing to do with where he was riding on the wide, high speed street.

New York’s mayor signs a bill authorizing 250 miles of protected bike lanes and 150 miles of bus lanes.

A New York news service says everyone wants safer streets, but no one wants to change the way they get around.

Apparently, DC isn’t Copenhagen, either.

That’s more like it. A South Carolina man gets 20 years behind bars for the drunken hit-and-run that killed a man on a bicycle, followed by a second DUI just a week later; his victim was a survivor of the Boston Marathon bombing.

A Florida bike cop faces charges for allegedly smashing the windshield of a passing car with a two-by-four while on patrol duty.

 

International

Shimano’s trying to make your derailleur obsolete.

A Toronto shop owner says she’s looking forward to a protected bike lane being extended to her area, because she knows bikes are good for business.

London may be making major improvements in bicycling infrastructure, but Strava says it isn’t Britain’s leading bike city.

A “Mini Holland” pilot project in London’s Walthamstow neighborhood has reduced traffic in the surrounding area by 10,000 trips a day, with a big jump in people walking and bicycling.

Bike scribe and historian Carlton Reid says maybe building British bikeways out of wood chips isn’t so crazy after all.

Aussie food delivery riders are getting stiffed to the tune of up to $322 a week. Although that’s just $219 in US dollars.

A new Australian study show a typical Melbourne bike commuter is subjected to dangerous passes by drivers an average three times on their way to work.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews examines how Gen Z cyclists like Remco Evenepoel and Egan Bernal are changing pro cycling.

Virginia’s Sika Henry intends to become the first African American female pro triathlete.

The New York Times attends the funeral of 83-year old French cycling legend Raymond Poulidor.

British pro cyclist Adam Kenway says he was very lucky to survive a crash with a van driver while he was riding his bike home from work.

 

Finally…

If you’re riding a stolen $3,000 mountain bike, probably not the best idea to tell strangers it’s hot. When you’re carrying a handful of stolen credit card numbers on your bike and already have an outstanding drug warrant, just stop for the damn stop sign, already.

And don’t wait 86 years for your first bike ride.

Seriously.

 

 

Morning Links: LA boots Uber bikes & scooters, Sarah Kate Levy kickoff party, and at least DTLA getting bike lanes

In a showdown of Old West proportions, Los Angeles has given Uber until high noon to get out of town.

Okay, Friday.

That’s because the company has balked on sharing dockless scooter and bikeshare usage data as required in their contract with the city.

And that’s usage, not user, data, the latter of which is supposedly kept hidden.

However, that ultimatum does not include their ride hailing service.

So feel free to keep those Uber gas guzzlers guzzling next week.

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Bike and transit friendly Sarah Kate Levy is hosting a party to kick off the signature gathering phase of her campaign to unseat CD4 Councilmember David Ryu in Hollywood on this Saturday.

I’ll try to drop by to get my name on one, even if that means tearing my wife away from our so far unsuccessful search to replace the Corgi.

Because how can you replace an irreplaceable dog anyway?

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Downtown Los Angeles is moving forward with bike lanes, even as the rest of the city stagnates.

Maybe if we could clone CD14 Councilmember José Huizar, the rest of us might finally see some, too.

Or at least him to teach the other councilmembers how it’s done.

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Sometimes its the people on bikes behaving badly.

A prelim is under way for San Diego man accused of being the bike-riding serial killer who attacked a number of homeless people with knives and railroad spikes, and set two men on fire; he allegedly killed five people and injured ten more. Seriously, there’s not a pit in hell deep enough for someone capable of that.

A New York man was caught on video riding his bike onto a sidewalk, pulling out a gun and opening fire on a group of people in broad daylight; his intended victims can be glad he seems to be a bad shot.

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Local

A writer for Los Angeles Magazine questions whether eliminating parking minimums will be good for DTLA, and says it’s unlikely residents would see lower rents as a result.

Bike Mag profiles LA-based street artist turned mountain biker Caché.

Climate activist Greta Thunberg is one of us, going for a Santa Monica bike ride with the former Governator; she’s been traveling the US by train and in Schwarzenegger’s Tesla.

This is who we share the roads with. An entire Long Beach family was tragically wiped out by a 20-year old drunk driver who failed to navigate a turn on Halloween, and ended up on the sidewalk they were trick or treating on.

 

State

An Encinitas bike rider politely points out that yes, there are more than 400 bike riders in the city.

A new controversy erupted when the husband of the mayor of Encinitas was rejected for board membership on the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, allegedly because he supports protected bike lanes, rather than vehicular cycling.

A San Diego woman suffered a compound leg fracture when she was hit by a driver while riding her bike in the city’s Mira Mesa neighborhood.

Apparently, it takes awhile for news to move south, as the San Diego Union-Tribune is just now catching up with the story that e-scooters aren’t as green as you might think; they’re only three months behind their own sister publication and the rest of the country.

A Bakersfield bike rider is in critical condition after yet another hit-and-run by yet another heartless California driver.

San Francisco bike riders fan out to document 259 drivers violating bike lanes in an eight hour period — one third of them on a single nine-block stretch of Valencia Street.

 

National

HuffPost says Democrats have a baffling blind spot when it comes to cars, wondering why the 2020 candidates won’t mention motor vehicles’ contribution to greenhouse gasses.

Now you, too, can be a real superhero when you ride your very own Captain Marvel Schwinn fixie.

A Washington letter writer calls for banning skateboards everywhere but skate parks. And probably wants to ban those, too.

Colorado leaders are discovering that when it comes to ebikes, resistance is futile.

Police in Missoula MT are carrying bike lights in their patrol cars so they can give bike riders without them a free set — and a ticket. We tried to get LAPD to do that for years, but with a warning instead of a ticket. But couldn’t find a deep enough pocket to pay for them. 

Wichita, Kansas considers adding a bike valet program for a new minor league ballpark currently under constriction. Which the Dodgers should have done years ago. And the Kings. And the Galaxy. And the LAFC. And the Lakers. And the Clippers. And the Rams. And the San Diego Chargers of Los Angeles…

Dallas considers reducing a dangerous six-lane virtual highway down to a four-lane boulevard as part of the city’s Complete Streets program. Hopefully they’ll get a little less backlash than Los Angeles officials did on the Venice Blvd road diet.

A Cleveland letter writer says there are good reasons why bicyclists might ride in a narrow roadway, rather than a nearby path.

A Boston paper says whoa, whoa, let’s not go too fast on installing bike lanes, despite arguments that they could be good for local businesses; right now, the city has a whopping 68 miles of bike lanes on its 880 miles of streets.

The New York Daily News applauds a new law requiring the city to update its street master plan every five years — and include an actual connected bike lane network.

 

International

Actor Henry Golding is one of us, at least on the big screen.

A London family is happy to get their bicycle built for three back after someone took it several weeks ago; a couple of local residents turned down a reward for finding it.

I want to be like him when I grow up. An 85-year old English great-grandfather now holds seven age-group world records, after adding two more to his portfolio.

A Guardian podcast considers why more and more pedestrians are getting killed on our streets, and whether Silicon Valley really has the answers.

A BBC TV series makes the case that bicycles are the most popular form of transportation on the planet. And the most efficient, too.

A new Irish bike light automatically adjust brightness to road conditions, senses nearby traffic to switch to flasher mode when cars are nearby, and records that data to crowdsource a map of cycling conditions.

If you build it, they will come. Paris saw a 54% jump in bicycling rates in just one year after investing in new bikeways and bikeshare.

When you’re a high-ranking Delhi official, and can’t drive because of the city’s even and odd traffic days, just ride your bicycle.

Authorities in Kuala Lumpur threatened to use a law intended to assure parents supervise their children to prosecute those whose kids are ride basikal lajak, bicycles illegally modified with no brakes and chopped handlebars that allow riders to take the “superman” position. Note to Malay Mail — removing the frame might make a bike just a tad difficult to ride.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling says it may not be traditional road racing, but something new and interesting could rise from the ashes of the Amgen Tour of California.

 

Finally…

If you really want to sell your “well-established premium bike shop,” it might help to mention where it is. First there is a bike lane, then there is not bike lane, then there is.

And no, the middle of a sidewalk isn’t the right place to park your scooter. A bike lane isn’t, either.

 

Morning Links: $25,000 reward for heartless hit-and-run driver, LA chef dies after cycling heart attack, and Gatto gets it

Once again, a heartless coward has fled the scene after slamming into someone on a bicycle.

But this time, it was caught on security cam.

And yes, it’s every bit as hard to watch as you might think, so be forewarned.

Remarkably, the victim survived the crash, but is hospitalized with severe injuries.

The wreck took place around 11:45 pm in the 3000 block of Berkeley Avenue in Silver Lake as the hit-and-run driver rounded a curve, and slams into the victim head-on.

Then keeps going without even slowing down.

And this time, there’s no arguing that the driver may not have known it happened.

I’m told the victim may be a homeless man who lives in the area.

Police suspect the hit-and-run driver may live in the neighborhood; they’re looking for a late model red Mini Cooper with a white roof and sunroof, with probable damage to the front-end and windshield.

Anyone with information is urged to call LAPD Detective Juan Campos at 213/833-3713. As always, there is a standing $25,000 reward for any hit-and-run resulting in serious injury to the victim.

Let’s find the jerk.

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A surprising number of chefs in the Los Angeles area ride bikes.

Sadly, it may have cost one his life last week, as famed LA chef Joe Miller died weeks after suffering a heart attack while riding his bike.

Family members announced the Michelin star-winning chef behind the groundbreaking Joe’s on Abbot Kinney lost his battle to survive on Wednesday, due to complications from a cardiac arrest on a September cycling trip.

This is a tragic reminder that while bicycling provides exceptional cardio-pulmonary benefits, it can also trigger underlying medical conditions.

It’s vital to see your doctor on a regular basis to make sure you’re up to the stresses you put on your body, especially those of us who like to ride hard.

It’s natural to think you’re bulletproof and avoid seeing a physician when you’re strong on a bike.

It’s also a mistake.

For nearly two decades after I started riding, the only time I saw a doctor was in the ER when they were patching me up after my latest two-wheeled wipeout.

If I had, it’s possible someone may have caught my diabetes before it did so much damage.

If you see a doctor regularly, good for you. Just push him or her to look a little harder and make sure everything’s okay under that muscular physique.

Well, muscular from the waist down, anyway.

If you don’t, what the hell are you waiting for? Stop reading, pick up the phone and make an appointment.

We’ll wait.

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Now that everyone is back, today’s must read comes from former Burbank state representative Mike Gatto, as he makes the case for establishing a walkable, shopable and carfree retail district in each of LA’s 15 council districts.

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Once again, the business community gets it wrong, insisting that plans to eliminate street parking on San Diego’s 30th street will harm businesses and won’t save the climate.

Studies have shown that business owners consistently overestimate the percentage of their business that comes from motorists, and underestimate how much comes from bicyclists, pedestrians and transit users — let alone how much more would if customers had more complete, livable streets.

Those same studies show that bike lanes are good for business, increasing sales, reducing vacancy rates and increasing property values in the surrounding area.

But who would want that?

As for the climate, we have to start somewhere.

And the best place to start is reducing the number of motor vehicles on the streets. Which means creating walkable, bikeable, transit-rich communities so people don’t have to drive.

If that also benefits businesses and residents, everyone wins.

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This is who we share the roads with.

A Phoenix family is alive today because a crash saved them from a red light-running driver.

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This is the difference a single bicycle can make to someone in need.

Thanks to the One Bicycle Foundation for the link.

You can help make a difference in someone’s life for as little as $25. Or donate a bike yourself for just $170.

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And this is just a practice session.

Meanwhile, Bike Mag offers some very cool photos of death-defying aerials from the actual Red Bull Rampage on Friday.

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

A Victorville man faces charges for pistol whipping a 16-year old boy with a semi-automatic handgun for the crime of simply riding a bicycle in the area. Apparently he did it with the gun loaded and the safety off — and it went off while he was beating the boy with it. Let’s hope they find a very deep pit to drop him in.

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Local

The long-discussed Red Car Pedestrian Bridge is slowly taking shape over the Los Angeles River, using trusses from the old Red Cars to give bicyclists and pedestrians a less-convenient alternative to the soon-to-be-rebuilt Glendale-Hyperion Bridge.

The Southern California Association of Governments’ popular Go Human safety campaign will go on, after receiving a $1 million grant from the state.

Metro wants your comments on proposals to close the DTLA-Vernon gap in the LA River bike path to create a single route from the San Fernando Valley to Long Beach.

Burbank is moving forward with plans to complete a protected bike lane connecting with the city’s Metrolink station, and building out a bike network that will connect with other cities in the region.

 

State

A writer for the LA Times tagged along with the eight-day, 525-mile California Coast Classic; the 195 riders raised $1.1 million to fight arthritis.

A Carlsbad street will get new bike lanes, sidewalks and landscaping for an underpass crossing I-5.

The California Public Utilities Commission signed off on plans to build a bike and pedestrian underpass to provide a safe route across a rail line in Encinitas.

A 51-year old Bonita man suffered “major but not life-threatening” injuries when he was right hooked by the driver of a cement truck while riding his bike.

San Diego streets shut down on Sunday — or rather, opened up — for that city’s CiclaSDias open streets celebration.

More bad news from Palm Desert, where an 82-year old man suffered major injuries when he was left crossed on his bike by a 77-year old driver. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

Once again, the threat of a recall is enough to get city officials to rip out a protected bike lane, after residents of Grover Beach couldn’t figure out that you have to step over the curb on a new curb-protected bike lane. And can’t drive over it, either. Sort of like every other curb, anywhere else.

Sad news from Fresno, where a man on a bicycle was killed by a stoned driver who got high in her car on her lunch break.

This is why people keep dying on our streets. A Berkeley woman walks without a single day behind bars after she left crossed a 69-year old man on a bike, dragging him under her car for several seconds, then got out, yanked his bike out from underneath her car, and drove off as the victim and a witness tried to stop her. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Sad news from Petaluma, where someone on a bicycle was killed in a collision with a semi driver.

 

National

Fast Company questions whether SUVs should be banned, at least in cities. New York’s DOT commissioner appears to agree, blaming SUVs for the city’s alarming jump in bicycle fatalities this year.

It takes a major schmuck to steal a Portland ghost bike after twelve years.

Aspen CO resident Lance Armstrong pitched in along with a former Colorado governor to build over one hundred bicycles to offer to every second grader at a local elementary school.

Forget the bikes; check out the speaker on that Victrola in this turn of the century Colorado bike shop.

Kindhearted Colorado sheriff’s deputies pitched in to buy a new bicycle for an autistic high school student who had outgrown his.

A Tulsa, Oklahoma man faces a first-degree murder charge for repeatedly stabbing another man in a fight over a bicycle.

Outside says frozen Minnesota is an ideal year-round bicycling spot.

Providence RI will rip out a brand new two-way cycle track after just six weeks because the city failed to consult residents before putting it in.

New York’s senior senator, the Democratic leader in the US Senate, calls for a plan to replace all gas-powered motor vehicles with electric ones by 2040. Great idea, except that until the US achieves 100% renewable power, it just exchanges one form of carbon-burning power for another, and doesn’t take a single car or truck off the road.

Heartbreaking news from Brooklyn, where boy got a new bicycle for his eighth birthday. And was killed riding it just two years later.

New York City considers adopting a three-foot passing law to pre-empt the state’s requirement for a safe passing distance. But will only fine drivers a lousy fifty bucks for breaking it.

Good news for Gotham bike riders, as a judge tosses a lawsuit from wealthy NIMBY condo owners trying to have the popular Central Park West protected bike lanes ripped out, calling the lawsuit meritless.

They get it. An editorial in an upstate New York paper calls for a new law to penalize drivers who injure or kill another person.

The DC City Council responds to bike and pedestrian deaths with proposals to lower speed limits, ban right turns on red lights and allow private citizens to ticket drivers blocking crosswalks and bike lanes, as well as require protected bike lanes anytime a street in the bike plan gets overhauled. Maybe we could get them to come teach their LA peers what to do to make Vision Zero work.

Tampa FL police say they’re getting a handle on the problem of biking while black, saying they’re stopping and ticketing fewer African American bike riders, though black riders are still more likely to get a ticket or warning than a white person.

 

International

Road.cc offers inexpensive hacks to help keep you on your bike this winter.

A writer for Bike Radar offers five common quotes guaranteed to deflate the mood on your next group ride.

You know ebikes have officially arrived when they’re featured on a Trump-less British version of The Apprentice. And sell a combined $2.2 million worth.

An English woman in her 70s was knocked cold by a hit-and-run bike rider. Seriously, don’t be like people in cars. Just stop, already.

Always hit the back brakes first. A UK bike cop pulls a major endo in the middle of the street while chasing a suspect.

I want to be like her when I grow up, too. A 72-year old grandmother in the UK battled it out with a suspected bike thief when the man tried to reclaim it from her son’s shop after being told it was stolen.

A British woman starts her own bikeshare company after dropping out of Oxford to study design; what initially began as a school project is now available on the streets in three cities.

An Irish pedestrian group says you should have to wear an identity badge anytime you ride your bike. How about one of those convention badges that read “Hi, my name is ….”?

Egyptian women are overcoming societal restrictions to claim space on Cairo streets for them and their bicycles.

In a highly questionable Qatari study, not one single bicyclist who was admitted to a hospital with a serious head injury was wearing a helmet, and only 3% of riders admitted with any kind of traumatic injury during the six-year study had a skid lid on.

Former Aussie rugby player and current CrossFit star James Newbury is one of us, even if he won’t be riding for awhile after hitting gravel and pulling an endo, then hitting a tree and fracturing his back.

This is who we share the roads with. Five people are dead and nine injured after a Shanghai driver went on a hit-and-run rampage, starting by hitting a taxi and an ebike rider, followed by crashing into an SUV after running a red light, and wrapping it all up by slamming into three non-motorized vehicles and several pedestrians. And yet, Xinhua still calls it an accident. Let’s hope that’s just a bad translation.

What if you built a state-of-the-art automated bicycle parking garage in Singapore and nobody came?

Tokyo wants to force bicyclists to carry liability insurance when they ride.

 

Competitive Cycling

Forget doping. Just zap your brain, instead.

Peter Sagan announces he’ll ride both the Giro and the Tour de France next year, forgoing the Amgen Tour of California.

Rouleur selects this year’s inductees for their Cycling Hall of Fame, selecting America’s only remaining Tour de France winner, as well as Marianne Vos, and Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwin.

The US team finished seventh in the men’s road cycling race at the World Military Games, with the top individual finisher crossing the finish line in 11th place.

How to ride a bike at 183.9 mph. Which is very similar to my cruising speed these days, as long as you remove the one and the eight.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to tell the cops you were injured in a hit-and-run after cutting your hands breaking into a store, get rid of the damn merchandise you took, first. Apparently, we’re not even safe from golf cart drivers.

And as long as your dog has a license, might as well let him use it.

Morning Links: Warning tourists about bad LA bike lanes, slow roll to Major Taylor’s bike, and celebrate Eagle Rock bike lanes

Seriously.

How sad is it that the Fodor’s Travel site feels the need to warn tourist against LA’s slow buses, distracted drivers and virtually nonexistent bike lanes?

While we’re on the subject of size, let’s talk about how to get around. You have a lot of options, so choose wisely. You can rent a car, ride a bus, take the metro, hail a taxi, use a ride-sharing app, or scoot (ugh). Lesson 1. Never ride the bus. It takes too long to get anywhere. Lesson 2. The metro doesn’t go everywhere, so pick your routes carefully. Lesson 3. Ride-sharing apps are infinitely cheaper than taxis (download Uber and/or Lyft). Lesson 4. If you must, scoot. The newest transport kids on the block are Lime and Byrd, electric scooters that make it easy to get around individual neighborhoods. Just be careful because bike lanes are scarce and L.A. drivers don’t look (read: they’re on their phones).

Photo by Sergij from Pexels.

………

Sounds like fun.

You’re invited to take a slow roll from Leimert Park to Pasadena on Novenber 16th to see the actual bike ridden by turn of the century African-American cycling legend Major Taylor, recently purchased by the owner of Velo Pasadena for his own bicycling museum.

That’s the turn of the previous century, not the last one.

As in the 1890s.

Which makes Taylor just the second black world champion in any sport. Even if he was riding on wooden rims.

Thanks to David Huntsman for the heads-up.

………

Or maybe you’d rather come out this Saturday to celebrate Eagle Rock’s bike lanes, and plan for more Complete Streets to come.

Thanks to Felicia G for the tip.

………

Who needs a mountain to mountain bike?

Unless you speak German, feel free to skip the first 1:30 or so.

………

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

A road raging British driver was fined the equivalent of $5,800 for grabbing a teenage bike rider by the collar and twice spitting in his face, after the boy flipped him off when the driver honked at him.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels who are the problem.

Sacramento police are looking for the bike-riding jerk who slapped a woman on the ass, then came back several minutes later and did it again.

………

Local

Bike Talk talks Metro Culture, and the death of a four-year old girl crossing the street with her mother in Koreatown last week.

Congratulations to UCLA on being named a gold-level Bicycle Friendly University, the first school in LA County to achieve that status.

Actor Christian Bale is one of us, as he rides his cruiser bike to Venice with his five-year old son in tow.

Long Beach is mourning the death of artist and graphic designer Katie Phillips, who was also one of the founders of the city’s Kidical Mass; described as a “beautiful soul,” she passed away over the weekend.

 

State

You can now pre-order the recently adopted California Bicycle Special License Plate for your car or truck; the state is required to get 7,500 pre-orders before it can go into production. Or you could skip the license, sell your car and get a new bike or ebike instead. Just saying.

Tickets for distracted driving have dropped in San Diego. Which is less likely to be the result of drivers putting their phone away than police giving up in the face of overwhelming numbers.

Watsonville bike riders are getting shiny new green bike lanes today.

A reminder that Los Angeles police still don’t have a bait bike program despite rampant bike thefts, as police in Danville bust a man who cut the lock and tried to ride off on their GPS-equipped bike.

 

National

Dockless mopeds are soon headed to a street near you.

Your next ebike could be a Harley Rude Boy.

NPR examines the struggle by the National Parks Service to develop policies on whether or not to allow ebikes in each individual park, and how.

Oregon state police have released the full 38-minute body cam video of the arrest of a young black woman for the crime of riding salmon on the campus of Oregon State University, which has been criticized for excessive force.

Denver’s mayor agrees to study lowering default speed limits to 20 mph, but cuts funding for the study nearly in half.

Heartbreaking story from Texas, where a man sacrificed his own life to save his fiancé, pushing her off her bike as they were riding together just before he was struck by a motorist.

Queens bicyclists protest the 500 days since they were promised a protected bike lane along the city’s “Boulevard of Death,” which hasn’t even been started yet.

The author of a history of bicycling in NYC says things are better than they used to be, but bikes will probably always be “somewhat marginalized.”

A Streetsblog op-ed says New York public meetings are getting meaner and less truthful in the Trump era. A phenomenon we’ve unfortunately seen here in SoCal, too.

This is why people keep dying on the streets, as authorities manage to keep yet another dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late. A Pennsylvania man with a history of blackouts and seizures behind the wheel faces a vehicular homicide charge for blowing a stop sign and plowing into a man on a bike; he’s had at least three other seizure related crashes.

Bicycling deaths are up nearly 30% over last year in South Carolina.

Atlanta installed a temporary pop-up bike lane connecting two other bike lanes for the next week to give everyone a chance to see how it works before they complain.

The admittedly drunk driver who plowed through a group of bike riders during a New Orleans Mardi Gras parade pled guilty to 14 counts, but will still go trial next week on two remaining counts of vehicular homicide; how much time be spends behind bars will be determined by whether a judge rules his BAC was above .20 at the time of the crash.

There’s a special place in hell for the Florida couple that held a 12-year old boy at knife point and took his bicycle, locking it inside their home.

 

International

Forget carbon. Your next ebike could be made from injection-molded thermoplastic.

A London man is on trial for killing a pedestrian while he was riding an ebike, which was allegedly traveling faster than the law allows.

An English security cam video shows just how fast a bike thief can make off with an unlocked bike. Hint: How long does it take to hop on one and pedal away?

A British town is offering an amnesty to get people to return stolen bikeshare bikes.

The UK will reconsider the rules governing diplomatic immunity, after admitting government officials knew the wife of an American diplomat responsible for the hit-and-run death of a young motorcycle rider was going to flee the country to avoid prosecution.

An Indian regional leader multi-modaled his way to the voting booth, traveling by train and pedicab, and finishing the journey by bicycle.

 

Finally…

Undying for a good time. What good is a new bike path if it’s under water most of the year?

And why run for president when you can go by bike?

Morning Links: Los Angeles bike lane fail, take a NIMBY Pasadena traffic survey, and road rage on San Diego golf course

Um, no.

Spectrum News 1 reports on Sunday’s CicLAvia, and leads off with the surprising news that Los Angeles has installed 600 miles of bike lanes on LA streets since the bike plan was passed in 2010.

Except it ain’t necessarily so.

There is a case to be made that the city has built 600 miles of bikeways over the past nine years.

But only if you include bike paths and sharrows in that total.

And only if you measure part of that in lane miles — which counts each side of the road separately, effectively doubling the total.

A more easily understandable figure is center lane miles, which measures both sides of the roadway at once.

In truth, Los Angeles had only painted 250.82 miles of bike lanes when adjusted for lane miles, as of the 2015-16 fiscal year. Along with 19.95 miles of bike paths, and 90.44 miles of basically useless sharrows.

In the three years since then, the city’s anemic output has resulted in just 33.25 center lane miles of any kind — a miserable average of just 11.08 miles a year.

And this with a progressive mayor who supposedly supports bicycling, and one of the nation’s most respected planning heads in LADOT’s Seleta Reynolds.

The word pathetic comes to mind.

So a more accurate figure, measured the way most people would understand it, comes out to less than 400 miles of bikeways of any kind built in Los Angeles since 2010.

394.46, to be exact.

And only 284.04 miles of those are on-street bike lanes – assuming all the bikeways built after the 2013-2014 fiscal year are bike lanes, and not sharrows.

Or looking at it another way, only 120.61 miles of bikeways of any kind have been built since Eric Garcetti became mayor in 2013, for an average of just 17.23 center lane miles per year.

And yes, that includes sharrows.

To make matters worse, half of those were built during his first year in office, so they were already under way when he came in.

Which means in reality, Garcetti and Reynolds should only be credited with just 60.85 center lane miles of any kind.

An average of just 10.14 miles per year after his first year.

Just in case you wondered why Vision Zero is failing in Los Angeles.

………

Seriously, stop whatever you’re doing, and take a few minutes to respond to this very slanted survey from NIMBY traffic safety deniers Keep LA Moving’s Pasadena franchise.

It would be a real shame if the responses to the survey reflected a desire for safe streets and increased density, instead their desire to keep zoom, zooming on bike and pedestrian unfriendly Rose City streets only a car could love.

And while the survey says you can only respond once, that’s once per device.

I also may have *accidently* discovered that you can respond as many times as you want if you keep deleting the two Survey Monkey cookies on your computer.

Not that anyone would do that. of course.

………

CiclaValley’s Zachary Rynew is none too pleased with a UPS driver.

For good reason.

………

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

A road raging San Diego man drove onto a golf course to chase two bike-riding teens after they allegedly through food onto his car, first running down one boy with his car, then getting out and repeatedly punching him. Note to crazy man: just get your damn car washed next time.

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

Or at least we can assume it was someone who rides a bike who once again hacked a Brooklyn NY traffic sign to spread anti-car messages. Seriously, I’m not laughing. You’re laughing.

………

Local

Nice piece from Streetsblog’s Sahra Sulaiman about a South LA man who hit the scrapyard to build a custom lowrider-style fat tire bike for a friend. And ended up inking a deal with a bike maker.

 

State

They get it. Encinitas decides to split the baby, converting existing bike lanes along the Coast Highway to protected lanes, and painting sharrows on the right lane of the highway so the spandexed crowd doesn’t have to slow down or compete for space with slower riders.

A Palm Springs magazine talks with Tom Kirk, the man behind the planned 50-mile bike path slowly taking shape around the Coachella Valley.

Santa Barbara sheriff’s deputies are trying out new police vehicles with a battery and two wheels, and a Trek decal on the frame.

Streetsblog SF says you may not be able to stop drivers from parking in bike lanes, but at least something could be done about employees of transit agencies.

The victim in Thursday’s fatal dooring in Oakland has been identified as a 24-year old Oakland man. Just a reminder, since the Bay Area media insists on saying the victim ran into the open door — drivers are always responsible for dooring a bike rider as long as the victim obeying the law and riding on the right side of the street.

 

National

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss says there’s nothing controversial about bike lanes, and it’s time for the media to catch up. Tell that to Keep LA Moving and their associates.

You can forget autonomous cars saving us anytime soon. A study by AAA shows cars with supposed pedestrian-detection systems can’t recognize people in the roadway under several circumstances, including after dark and when traveling over 25 mph.

The New York Times says bikes and bears don’t mix, with recreational mountain biking leading to dangerous conditions for humans, as well as for bears and other wildlife. Mountain biking may have sustainability issues, too. Thanks to George Wolfberg for the first link.

Forget bears, rainbow crosswalks are the real danger.

Hundreds of Lime bikes and scooters were burned in a Seattle warehouse fire, apparently sparked by exploding batteries.

A Colorado velodrome is facing demolition unless they can find an alternate buyer in the next few months.

A Cleveland man faces 16 charges, including kidnapping and aggravated robbery, for carjacking a vehicle with a toddler inside and killing a man riding a bicycle while fleeing from police. Which brings up the obvious question of why, apparently, wasn’t he charged with 2nd degree murder?

An MS-13 gang member got 23 to life behind bars for hacking a 15-year old New York State boy to death with a machete after he went out for a bike ride.

Apparently, things are no different in Hoboken as they are anywhere else, as local NIMBYs swear their support for bike lanes and Vision Zero, just not where the city wants to put them.

Charges were reduced for an Uber bike delivery rider in the stabbing death of a Philadelphia man, from 2nd degree murder to voluntary manslaughter, reducing the maximum sentence from 40 to 20 years. The defense claims the white victim used racist language while arguing with the black bike rider.

Police in Pennsylvania are looking for a bank robber who may have fled the scene in a white van. Or maybe an SUV. Or a mountain bike.

Bethesda, Maryland bike riders get their first protected intersection. Which outnumbers similar intersections in Los Angeles by a factor of 1 – 0.

Heartbreaking news from Alabama, where a preteen boy shot a 12-year old boy in the back of the head when he refused to hand over his bicycle.

 

International

A British Lord has a long history of vehemently opposing bicycles and the people who ride them. But all that will be forgotten if you sign up for his charity bike ride in Spain (scroll down). Forgotten by you, that is; he’ll undoubtedly continue criticizing bikes while taking your money.

Road.cc explains why UK bike riders may not use the “perfectly good bike lanes” drivers often complain about.

The Guardian asks if we should ban SUVs from our cities. Short answer, yes. Longer answer, absolutely.

Apparently, suffering a severe brain injury isn’t good for your marriage. The wife of British adventurer James Cracknell explains why the couple split up after 17 years of marriage, saying the extreme brain injury he suffered when he was struck by a truck driver while riding across the US in 2010 left him with a different personality.

Amsterdam is slowly moving to cut cars out of the picture, one street at a time.

Break the rules for riding a bicycle in Abu Dhabi, and you may not have one anymore.

Tragic news from Singapore, as a 53-year old man died five days after he was hit by someone on a bicycle; to make matters worse, his sister stumbled on the scene as paramedics were tending to her brother.

Speaking of Singapore, e-scooters may be on their way out in the law-and-order city-state.

 

Competitive Cycling

Once again, a pro cyclist has been seriously injured in a crash with a motor vehicle during a race. Dutch rider Edo Maas suffered neck, back and facial fractures when he collided with a car whose driver had wandered onto the closed course during a rapid descent in the Piccolo Lombardia race; the 19-year old cyclist was riding on the Giro’s Madonna del Ghisallo bike path, named after the patron saint of bicyclists.

Deadspin walks readers through the “hilarious” Zwift cheating scandal. Despite the scandal, Zwift is aiming to make it into the Olympic Games. Nothing like winning gold for riding a bicycle that doesn’t go anywhere.

Bike Radar says Lance just won’t go away. Although they might have said it a tad more politely. But still.

 

Finally…

Sometimes, you just can’t win; even when a bike-riding burglar put lights and reflectors on his bike, it just makes him easier to spot. Today’s lesson — don’t pee around machete-carrying bike riders.

And if mountain bikes are too expensive, just make your own, using a front fork for the rear suspension.

 

Morning Links: A friendly talk with the father of vehicular cycling, gap closure on SaMo Blvd, and Popeye Doyle is one of us

Sorry about that. 

My brother Eric decided to spend a few more days than expected to rest up on his bike tour of the Western US. And after 74 days and 3,500 miles, with at least another 1,000 mile to go, he certainly had the right. 

But now that he’s safely on the road again, we’ve got a lot to catch up on. 

So grab you coffee and settle in. You may need a refill before we’re done. 

………

Bike scribe Peter Flax sat down for a surprisingly friendly conversation with John Forester, honored and derided as the father of vehicular cycling.

It’s a good read, presenting the human side of a man often seen as dogmatic and cantankerous.

PF: Well, as someone who presently lives and rides in Los Angeles, I’m curious what it was like to ride a bike in LA in the 50s and 60s

JF: Well, when I was with Los Angeles Wheelmen, we published a newsletter that got posted in bike shops, and some rides would start at a corner of Venice Boulevard somewhere in West LA. Or else they would car start — go in a car to a certain location and unload your bike and go off for the ride. Even then we knew that Los Angeles was just too damn big — if you wanted to get out of town, about the only way you could do it was on the coast highway. On any other route it a long, long time to get out of town, other than the mountains just behind Los Angeles. And the same sort of mix took place in Northern California — some rides starting at a local place, but for Marin rides I’d go up by car.

PF: So talk to me about this period, you’ll probably know the exact start of it better than I do, the late 60s and early 70s, when this bike boom finally came to the US.

JF: What I noticed toward the end of the 60s — I was still in Los Angeles in this time — was that there were road people, meaning Americans who drove sports cars, showing up with bicycles aboard. Good bicycles — I mean semi-racing or racing bikes. I’d upgraded my equipment by that time, too. I ordered a Holdsworth bicycle and parts to make up an all-Campy bike, and I switched to tubulars because they rolled easier. So I saw more people coming in cycling and they were not poor people, they did it because they enjoyed doing things on the road — driving cars and riding bikes.

Yet Forrester is someone who has probably had a greater influence on bicycling infrastructure, or the lack thereof, and how we’ve ridden for the past 50 years than anyone else.

And continues to defend his perspective.

PF: They put in a protected bike lane on Venice Boulevard for a mile a couple years ago, and I ride that stretch often. And what I perceive as a rider is that probably more than before I have to be more attentive when I get to intersections, but when I’m on the mid-block portion, I feel more relaxed because I feel protected. Perhaps it’s rearranged the risk, but my perception is that when you look at both the US and abroad, the data indicates that there are fewer fatal crashes when that kind of infrastructure is put in. That there are instances — like just a couple months ago in San Francisco where a young woman who works in the tech industry had someone open a car door in front of her and she swerved to avoid the door and got hit by a delivery truck. People see those kinds of incidents happening and then when protected lanes go in, they feel like that particular kind of risk has been erased for that kind of rider.

JF: Well, in the first place, don’t ride in the door zone. That’s one of the early rules of the game. And also, what you’re reading is people killed; you don’t read about broken ankles, concussed brains, cracked ribs, they don’t make the news. Only 2% of car-bike collisions are fatal; you’re making the tail wag the dog. And not only are just 2% of car-bike collisions fatal — they’re much more likely to occur during darkness and on rural roads than other car-bike collisions. Furthermore, as I’ve said only 5 percent of car-bike collisions are caused by same-direction motor traffic; 95 percent by turning and crossing movements. In other words, the people who you are quoting are making the tail wag the dog. And doing that because they are more frightened of traffic from behind than they are of anything else. That’s their phobia; it is a phobia because it is an unrealistic fear contrary to scientific knowledge.

It’s a long read.

But worth it to understand how we got where we are today.

For better or worse.

………

The good news is Los Angeles has finally closed the gap between the Santa Monica Blvd bike lanes that previously ended in Century City, and the relatively new bike lanes through Beverly Hills.

The bad news should be pretty obvious.

Meanwhile, West Hollywood leaders showed a little more political courage, voting to remove parking on one side of Santa Monica Blvd to connect their long-time bike lanes with the ones in Beverly Hills.

………

Gene Hackman is one of us.

Patrick Dempsey is one of us, too. But you knew that, right?

………

A writer for the Orange County Register considers why almost no one wears a bike helmet in the Netherlands.

But like most who tackle the topic, he neglects to consider the benefits of a step-through frame on a typical Dutch bike, which allows riders to simply step off in the event of a fall.

Sort of like this.

https://twitter.com/ritaxben/status/1177676740220637185

………

‘Nuff said.

https://twitter.com/GreavsieE17/status/1173926051468206080

………

Call me crazy, but maybe they’re taking this “shrink it and pink it” thing for women’s bikes a little too far.

………

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

The road-raging Singaporean truck driver caught on video squabbling with a bicyclist swears he only swerved his truck at the man to avoid a taxi. Because when you’re faced with a crash with something hard, like a taxi, always aim for something soft. Like a person.

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

Police in Santa Clara are looking for the vicious jerk who attacked a 91-year old man with a rock while he was visiting his wife’s grave, then made off on a bicycle with the victim’s belongings.

Police are looking for a bike rider who smashed the drive-through window on a Bronx Burger King with a bike chain when they refused to serve him because he wasn’t in a car.

………

Local

CD4 Councilmember David Ryu unveils a new HAWK beacon — short for High-intensity Activated crossWalK — to protect pedestrians on 6th Street, where local residents fought to have a life-saving road diet installed instead. And lost.

UCLA looks forward to this Sunday’s Heart of LA CicLAvia, which celebrates the 100th birthday of the university in its former Downtown location.

CiclaValley is a fan of the new Euro-style raised crosswalks in Beverly Hills.

Santa Monica has begun a project to improve the beachfront Marvin Braude Bike Trail from Muscle Beach to the city limit north of the Annenberg Beach House to widen the current path and build a separate walkway; bicyclists will be required to get off their bikes and walk them along a temporary trail through the construction zones.

Brooks McKinney talks with Frank Ching, Metro’s head of alternative mobility and transportation demand management programs.

 

State

A newspaper in Santa Clarita recommends what they call the great eight California bike trails, including LA County’s Marvin Braude Bike Trail, as well as bike paths in Ventura and Santa Barbara.

Tragic news from Orange, where a man died from multiple stab wounds after falling off his bicycle; he was apparently riding his bike to get help when he collapsed.

The Coast Highway in Encinitas will soon get buffered bike lanes. Unfortunately, it comes several years too late to save the life of Encino randonneur Jim Swartzman.

More bad news, as a 28-year old man was killed in a drive-by shooting while walking his bike in San Diego’s Mountain View neighborhood, after exchanging words with the men in the car.

A Victorville man was hospitalized in grave condition after he was struck by a driver while riding his bike. Although judging by the headline, what really mattered was the road closure that followed.

It was a bad week in Fresno County. A bike-riding man from India was killed in Selma by a 19-year old woman who was allegedly driving without a valid license, and reportedly has other undisclosed traffic crimes on her record. Three days later, a 76-year old man was killed in nearby Reedley when he reportedly rode out of an orchard into the path of another 19-year old driver.

Things weren’t much better in neighboring Merced County, where a man was killed when his bike was right hooked by a truck driver.

It takes a major schmuck to steal an entire truckload of donated bicycles intended for a class of Alameda 4th graders.

Megan Lynch forwards more on Cal Poly’s successful effort to set a new collegiate human-powered vehicle record, with a former Davis High grad manning the pedals.

 

National

CBS looks at the great scooter backlash.

CityLab celebrated my birthday with a ranking of the best and worst places to live carfree. Not surprisingly, San Francisco topped the list; shockingly, the LA metro area checked in at number ten. On the flip side, better keep your car if you live in San Bernardino or Riverside counties.

CityLab also says yes, a mass switch to electric vehicles could help bring down planet-killing emissions, but the real solution is for Americans to cut back on their driving right now. And Sacramento is ground zero in the fight.

A Seattle woman wants to know what happened to her ten years ago, when she was found next to her bike on the side of the road with a burst spleen and 22 broken bones, and no memory of what happened. Naturally, police blamed a fall caused by bad pavement, instead the far more likely possibility of a hit-and-run.

A Washington woman proves the old axiom, if you want to place high in a half-marathon, cheat by riding a bike.

Apparently order in the courtroom doesn’t extend to the streets, as a New Mexico judge slammed her car into a pair of bicyclists, killing one person and injuring the other.

A formerly homeless man in my hometown lifted himself off the streets, and turned his hard luck into a nonprofit dedicated to providing bicycles to those in need. Thanks to Tim Rutt for the link.

A Kansas man is suing the police for unlawful arrest after he refused to give his birthdate when he was stopped for riding on the sidewalk without a headlight. He served three months of a 17-month sentence when police found meth on his bike after the arrest; his conviction was later thrown out on appeal when the court ruled he was under no obligation to tell them, and that it’s against the law to arrest anyone suspected of committing a traffic violation.

In yet another example of authorities keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late, a Wisconsin driver faces charges for killing a 43-year old bike-riding teacher while driving at nearly three-times the legal alcohol limit; it was his third DUI in just three years.

Chicago police are writing fewer tickets to bike riders. But most are still going to people in predominantly black neighborhoods.

A Kentucky cop flipped his police cruiser during a chase. So naturally, someone on a bike gets the blame.

Authorities in Long Island continue their assault on teenage ride outs, monitoring social media to crack down on planned rides, impounding kids’ bikes and fining their parents up to $100 to get them back; advocates describe the ride outs as an effort to escape poverty and drugs, while opponents call it the most dangerous subculture on two wheels.

A Brooklyn town hall called by a bike lane opponent devolved into angry pushing and shoving, accompanied by a lot of shouting. Proof that LA public bike lane meetings can get worse. But not much. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up. 

A New York driver faces life in prison for allegedly murdering a bike rider by running him down with his SUV after the man allegedly tried to break into his SUV, then cut a woman with a screwdriver.

Apparently, a call to kill people on bicycles is what passes for satire at Penn State. Unfortunately, it’s an independent publication, so the unfunny schmuck who wrote it can’t get the F he so richly deserves.

The speeding driver who killed longtime DC bike advocate Dave Salovesh while attempting to evade police last April has been sentenced to eight and a half years behind bars in a plea bargain; he had faced up to 30 years if the case had gone to trial.

Video from Florida shows why you should always inspect a dockless bike or scooter before riding, as a man is seen tampering with two scooters in Fort Lauderdale.

This is who we share the roads with. A Florida man looks almost overjoyed to get his fifth DUI and 12th ticket for driving with a suspended license. Seriously, this is why people keep dying on the streets. Just taking away someone’s license doesn’t do a damn bit of good if they keep driving anyway. We need to impound their cars, and send the drivers to jail for repeat violations. Thanks to Robert Leone for the link. 

 

International

A 12-year old Montreal boy has a new bicycle thanks to Canadian pro cyclist James Piccoli, who replaced his stolen bike after reading the boy’s angry social media post.

They get it. A UK organization for disabled bicyclists introduces a campaign to promote bicycles as mobility solutions. Which should be required viewing for everyone who claims handicapped people can’t ride bikes, and bike lanes are a barrier for them. Because it ain’t necessarily so.

A British designer insists this is a bicycle. Something tells me you might not want to ride it, though.

No bias here. An English writer accuses “ultra-slick, leg-shaved, aerodynamic-obsessed Lycra louts” of being “yobs in tight shorts” who keep other people from riding bikes with their bad behavior.

Dubliners question why it should cost more to park a bike than it does to park a car. Or why it should cost anything, period.

Sexual harassment on the streets is one reason only one in 250 teenage girls bike to school in Ireland.

The prime minister of the Netherlands explains why he rides his bike to work.

Belgian bike riders can now get back to nature on a circular elevated bike path through the woods. Thanks to Fred Davis for the tip.

Horrifying story as a woman on a bicycle was dragged by a German train at 75 mph after she got her hand stuck in the door helping someone else board; remarkably, she only suffered cuts and bruises.

Here’s another one to add to your bike bucket list — a ride through Italy’s Tuscan countryside from Florence to Siena.

Residents of the former Indian principality of Gondal needed a license to ride a bicycle. And continued to renew their licenses for a decade after the law and principality came to an end with Indian independence in 1948.

More proof that some drivers think they own every inch of the road, as a road raging Brisbane driver screamed at a bike rider to get out of his way — while he was illegally driving in the bike lane.

An Aussie opposition leader trots out the ultimate insult, saying an underground highway project will turn Sydney’s west communities into a “Little Los Angeles.” Even though Los Angeles doesn’t have any buried highway junctions like that; all our misery-inducing freeway intersections stand proudly above ground.

 

Competitive Cycling

The women’s worlds were a Dutch affair, as Annemiek van Vleuten finished first in a 65-mile breakaway, while her fellow countrywoman Anna van der Breggen finished second, a little over two minutes later.

American Chloe Dygert prevented total Dutch women’s world domination, winning the rainbow jersey in the individual time trial, and beating van Der Breggen by over a minute to become the youngest ever women’s world champ at just 22 years old.

Twenty-three-year old Dane Mads Pedersen became the youngest men’s world champ in 20 years, when the favorites floundered after a soggy six and a half hours riding in the rain.

An 18-year old Columbian cyclist broke down in tears on the side of the road after losing a tire, as any hope of winning evaporated when the team car couldn’t get to him. Meanwhile, the drama continued as the apparent winner of the men’s U23 race was disqualified for drafting a team car while fighting his way back to the peloton after suffering a mechanical.

The era of doping may be officially over, but someone forgot to tell the Columbian cyclists.

An African website considers the story of legendary cyclist Major Taylor, who became America’s first black sports hero.

 

Finally…

Maybe a fish needs a bicycle after all. If you’re going to ride a bike topless after shoplifting a pair of flip flops, always take the lane.

And if there’s a bear in your way, just jump it.

………

L’Shanah Tovah Umetukah to everyone observing Rosh Hashanah today.

 

Morning Links: Koretz blocks bike lanes while planet burns, LA Vision Zero gone, and Pico Rivera bikeway meeting tonight

Good piece from Curbed, as they ask whether e-scooters are too dangerous for Los Angeles streets.

Short answer, it’s not the scooters that are dangerous.

But CD5 Councilmember Paul Koretz insists the streets — and sidewalks — are just too dangerous for scooter riders, saying they need the kind of bike infrastructure he’s blocked in his district because “political realities” make it too difficult.

Evidently, Koretz thinks he was only elected to do easy, convenient and popular things, and leave the hard stuff to whoever follows him once he’s termed out.

Or maybe just ignore the environment Koretz swears he’s committed to saving, and let cars keep killing us all until they finally kill the planet, too.

Evidently, he didn’t read that copy of Profiles in Courage we gave him last year.

Or watch Do the Right Thing, for that matter.

………

I guess our lives don’t matter, after all.

Los Angeles has taken down its Vision Zero website, and replaced it with LADOT’s Great Streets site.

So you may still die, but at least you’ll do it on a nicer street.

………

Active SGV is asking bike riders to turn out for a Pico Rivera regional bikeway design meeting tonight.

………

The LACBC will be hosting another round of BEST bike safety classes in conjunction with Metro next month.

………

If you’re fond o’ Peter Sagan, here’s your chance to meet and ride with him in Sagan’s new San Diego fondo.

Sorry, couldn’t resist.

………

Local

CiclaValley’s Zachary Rynew teamed with volunteer Michelle Paravicini to upgrade and redecorate a ghost bike for 15-year old bicyclist Sebastian Montero, who was killed by a speeding driver on Easter Sunday last year. A rededication ceremony will be held this Sunday.

Tyler the Creator is one of us, going for a fashionable ride in Los Angeles on a BMX from Long Beach bikemaker SE Bikes.

As usual, there will be a bike valet at this weekend’s annual Fiesta Hermosa in Hermosa Beach. So do everyone a favor and leave the car at home.

A handful of hecklers opposed to the recent road diet on the Broadway corridor tried to shout down a couple of Long Beach councilmembers at a monthly public Q&A session. So evidently, it’s not just LA and Pasadena NIMBYs that do that.

 

State

La Jolla follows Santa Monica’s lead and tries to corral e-scooters with painted, on-street scooter parking areas.

Fountain Valley’s newly rebuilt Slater Ave bridge will finally reopen today, complete with better sidewalks and bike lanes.

Where you can walk, hike and bike without leaving Riverside.

Petaluma-based premium bikewear brand Kitsbow is pulling up stakes, and moving across the US to North Carolina.

More bad news from NorCal, as a 28-year old Fremont bike rider was killed by a hit-and-run driver, who later returned to the scene after driving to work with the victim’s bicycle still embedded in his windshield; just one of those danged “unfortunate accidents” according to police. Meanwhile, San Francisco’s CBS outlet blames the victim for wearing dark clothes, while questioning whether he would hav survived if the driver hadn’t waited to call 911.

Sunnyvale joined the Vision Zero club, though advocates say the city isn’t doing enough to prevent bike and pedestrian deaths. Kind of like virtually every American city — including one SoCal metropolis in particular (see above).

San Francisco-based celebrity chef Chris Cosentino finds his balance by returning to his mountain bike.

 

National

CityLab says apps that automatically report problem drivers and blocked bike lanes to authorities — and save the information online — are troubling. Although I’d gladly take one designed to work in the LA area, driver privacy be damned. And let’s change the law so drivers can be ticketed based on photographic or video evidence.

Bicycling offers tips to get rid of that pain in your back. No, from riding, not the one you work for. Sorry.

Peloton says Bontrager’s new WaveCel helmet beats MIPS helmets at preventing concussions. Which matters because other helmets don’t do a damn thing to prevent TBIs, as I’ve learned the hard way. Thanks to Mike Cane for the heads-up.

Bike Portland considers the consequences when bike and e-scooter riders collide.

If anyone has seen Bill Walton’s bicycle that was stolen 42 years ago at an Oregon championship parade, be sure to let the former NBA star know. Although I wouldn’t try to confront anyone tall enough to ride that thing.

The Department of DIY struck in Boulder CO, where someone used toilet plungers to make their own protected bike lane; unfortunately, it didn’t last long before city workers removed them all.

It’s been a month since Arkansas’ version of the Idaho Stop Law went into effect, and the world hasn’t come crashing to an end. Although many people still don’t understand the law that allows bike riders to treat stop signs as yields.

After a Kentucky boy’s bicycle was stolen on his birthday, kindhearted firefighters took up a collection to buy him a new one.

You’ve got to be kidding. After a 76-year old Indiana bike rider was run down from behind by an unlicensed drunk driver, the local sheriff reminds bike riders to obey the law and wear a helmet. How about reminding people not to drive their damn cars after they’ve been drinking. And stay the hell off the roads if you don’t have a license.

A visiting German journalist tries bike commuting in Cleveland, and quickly learns the English word for pothole.

Life is cheap in New York state, where an 85-year old former cop walks with probation for a hit-and-run that severely injured a man riding bicycle, after claiming he didn’t know he’d hit anyone. He also got a ridiculous six-month driving ban; anyone who can hit someone hard enough to cause major injuries without even knowing it should never be allowed behind the wheel again.

New York experts say either fix a frequently blocked bike lane, or rip it out and start over.

A New York “mob” of young men and women beat a sleeping man with a cane and bottle before stealing his bicycle and wallet, then beat and robbed a Good Samaritan who tried to intervene. Note to NY Daily News — if someone who has a bicycle is sleeping on the sidewalk, “bicyclist” is probably not the best descriptor.

Life is cheap in Georgia, too, where a man walked with probation for killing a bike-riding woman; the driver played the universal Get Out of Jail Free card, claiming the sun was in his eyes.

A Florida kid starts his own nonprofit to give bike helmets to other kids at his school.

Miami first responders are riding 150 miles to Key West to raise funds for a local cancer charity.

 

International

Bicycling looks at Britain’s Rough Stuff Fellowship, the world’s oldest offroad bike club, and dedicated to extreme riding. Like biking to an Everest base camp.

Former Tour de France champ and banned doper Jan Ulrich was fined the equivalent of nearly $8,000 for attempting to strangle an escort while drunk and stoned in a German hotel room.

Great idea. A German politician says bicyclists should get an extra day of vacation because they’re healthier and use less sick time. Unless maybe we come down with a bad case of the bike flu, and have to call in sick to go for a bike ride.

At least there’s justice in Australia, where a drunk and stoned driver got a well-deserved ten years behind bars for killing a motorcycle cop who was escorting a charity bike ride; the schmuck had to have a friend blow into the interlock device on his car to get it to start. Which is what I’d call a really lousy friend.

 

Competitive Cycling

The fifth stage of the Vuelta finished in a brief breakaway and a change in leadership. Do we really need to be spoiler-free for the Vuelta, since hardly anyone can actually watch it in this county?

A Belgian court hears that fallen cyclist Bjorg Lambrecht lost control of his bicycle when he hit a roadside reflector during the Tour of Poland earlier this month.

 

Finally…

Repeat after me. If you’re stoned and carrying synthetic weed and meth on your bike, put a damn light on it already. No, bicycles haven’t returned to America’s streets; they were never gone.

And if your bike taillight is shaped like red testicles, take them off right now and go stand in the corner until we say you can come out.

Which may be never.

 

Morning Links: Bike lanes may create illusion of safety, a tropical criminal tri, and bike lanes on reimagined Crenshaw

A hard-hitting piece on the Governing website says new bike infrastructure creates the illusion of safety, encouraging more women to get on their bikes.

And the result is more women dying on them.

The solution, according to the writer, is separating bike lanes behind a physical barrier, while lowering speed limits for cars and trucks.

Long Beach bike lanes photo by Richard Rosenthal.

………

Call it a tropical criminal triathlon.

When police tried to stop a Hawaiian woman who appeared to be riding a stolen bicycle, she sped off on the bike, leading a slow speed chase across Hilo to the beach, where she ran to the water and swam off.

Police later found her on a nearby island, and pulled her out of the water when she tried to swim off again.

Then to top things off, it wasn’t even the bike their were looking for.

………

A 73-year old Indian driver suffered the ultimate distraction when he died of a heart attack behind the wheel and rammed into a 72-year old bike rider, causing “grievous” injuries.

Making the case even more bizarre, police booked the driver on posthumous criminal charges for causing the crash. Which presumably means, if convicted, he could face eternity behind bars.

Unfortunately, the Indian press frequently uses the same terms for bicycles, mopeds and motorcycles, so we have no way of knowing what the victim was actually riding.

………

Sometimes it’s the people on bikes behaving badly. 

A Vancouver bike rider demonstrates why you shouldn’t fly off a sidewalk and try to beat oncoming traffic.

https://twitter.com/village_whisper/status/1163212325920186368

Seriously, don’t try this at home.

Or anywhere else.

………

Local

CD8 City Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson is calling for new design standards for Crenshaw Blvd that call for an increase in density, and appear to include plans for much-needed bike lanes.

A new official Los Angeles art project will place up 100 rainbow halos to honor traffic victims. While it’s important to remember victims of traffic violence, wouldn’t it be better to fix the damn streets so we don’t need the halos in the first place?

A photographer offers some great views of last Sunday’s Meet the Hollywoods CicLAvia.

 

State

San Diego now projects a nearly $2 billion shortfall in street infrastructure funding over the next five years.

The SF Weekly wonders what it will take to get San Francisco’s Vision Zero back on track, saying the goal to eliminate traffic fatalities by 2024 seems farther away than ever.

 

National

Outside observes that bike riders who’ve been frightened off the roads are migrating to the dirt, and going where drivers can’t. I wish I could call that hyperbole, but I’ve heard from far too many people who now only ride gravel or mountain bikes because they don’t feel safe on the streets. 

The upscale Robb Report recommends seven “stylish and powerful” ebikes you’ll actually want to ride. And ranging from a mere $4,499 to $16,500.

This is who we share the roads with. A Portland driver was arrested after fleeing on foot following a multi-block serial crash that injured a man on a bike and wrecked a total of five parked cars.

Basketball Hall of Famer Bill Walton is one of us, as he prepares to ride with Portland Trailblazer fans this weekend.

A Colorado woman has started the online #itcouldbeme campaign on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to change the us vs. them mentality and put a face to the dangers bike riders face on the roads. Thanks to Penny Sputh for the heads-up.

Heartbreaking news from Detroit, where a nine-year old little girl was attacked and killed by three dogs as she was riding her bike near her home.

A kindhearted Michigan cop worked with a police nonprofit organization to replace the bike a boy uses to ride to school after it was stolen overnight.

Two bystanders are credited with saving the life of a Cincinnati man after he suffered a heart attack while returning home from a bike ride; a couple of cops also jumped in with an automatic defibrillator until paramedics arrived.

An Indianapolis bike rider says he appreciates the city’s new bicycle network, but he’s had it with people driving in bike lanes. Not to mention drivers who start on the green bike signal, rather than the regular traffic light.

Overprivileged residents of New York’s Central Park West went to court yesterday, suing to preserve their God-given right to street parking instead of protecting the lives of innocent people — even though a woman was killed riding her bike there last year.

A writer for Jalopnik says Vision Zero is the wrong goal; instead of responding to traffic deaths, New York should focus on “unleashing the joy of riding a bike to make a better place to live, not fighting the fear that riding a bike may entail.”

In an op-ed for the New York Times, a woman describes how her new ebike changed her life, getting her riding again in her 60s.

A DC website lists eight ways the law incentivizes driving.

A WaPo writer goes for a ride on the city’s new Vespa-style dockless e-mopeds.

A Georgia woman worries about the lack of children riding bikes, but admits she only rides on quiet Sunday mornings to avoid traffic.

 

International

London skyscrapers are blamed for creating dangerous wind tunnels that can knock bicyclists off their bikes, so the city is creating new planning rules that will require developers to study how to minimize the wind effect of any new building.

Britain’s Office of Communications received over 300 complaints following a controversial TV show asking if bicyclists are the scourge of the streets; the show promised an “unfiltered look” at the hostility between drivers, cyclists and pedestrians, but bike advocates called it nothing but “dressed up prejudice.”

The rich get richer. Bike-friendly Copenhagen opens a beautiful curving bike and pedestrian bridge across the city’s Inner Harbor. Forget Greenland, Trump should try buying that and moving it over here instead.

Beijing’s city-center Tongzhou district plans to upgrade 40 roads over the next three years to build a better network for non-motorized transportation, with separate lanes for bicyclists and pedestrians.

 

Competitive Cycling

Canadian Cycling Weekly previews the Vuelta a España kicking of this weekend. Surprisingly, four Americans are expected to contend for the title. South Americans, that is.

A woman survives the death of her pro cyclist husband in a racing crash, only to find love with another cyclist; Astrid Collinge married Belgian cyclist Louis Vervaeke this year, three years after her then-husband Antoine Demoitié was killed by a race moto during the 2016 Gent-Wevelgem.

Road.cc offers a video look back at what happens when pro cyclists get mad.

 

Finally…

It’s not a bakfiets, it’s a three-wheeled, pedal-powered preschool school bus. Five years behind bars for assault with a deadly bicycle.

And nothing like having your wedding pictures photobombed by naked people on bicycles.

 

Morning Links: Victorville bike rider critical after crash, LA bike lanes pay for themselves, and Clarkson says FU bikes

Let’s start with bad news from Victorville.

A man riding a bicycle suffered life-threatening injuries when he reportedly tried and failed to beat traffic on a busy highway.

The CHP reported it as a fatal crash; however, San Bernardino sheriff’s deputies were unable to confirm a fatal Victorville crash over the weekend.

We’ll let you know when and if we get more information.

………

Someone should remind our elected officials here in Los Angeles that spending on bicycling infrastructure makes sense.

And dollars.

Lots of dollars.

………

A letter writer in the Los Angeles Times says a Copenhagen-like level of bicycling may not be practical in the short term, but building a backbone network of bike lanes crossing the city would get many people out on their bikes.

Which, oddly, is exactly what the city’s bike plan calls for.

Meanwhile, another letter writer says Copenhagen is a great place for bicycling because it’s relatively flat.

Unlike Los Angeles, which is… uh, relatively flat.

………

As long as we’re on the subject of letters, an Oregon letter writer says —

  • Bicyclists need to take more responsibility.
  • There’s no proof bicycling infrastructure benefits anyone but people on bikes;
  • Bike riders use senior citizens as “wrinkly, silver-haired pylons on the imaginary racetrack of the handle-barbarians;”
  • Bicycling can never be made entirely safe, so riding on city streets will always be a gamble;
  • Oregon’s governor is rewarding the lawless behavior of bicyclists by allowing them to “wander through red lights, stop signs and ignore yield signs while challenging vehicles to the same space.”
  • Bike riders need to be taxed, tested and licensed. And ticketed.

Damn, that’s a lot to unpack.

But let’s give it a try.

First of all, yes, bike riders — and everyone else — need to assume more responsibility.

I myself recently assumed responsibility for disappearing Jimmy Hoffa, snatching the Lindberg baby, and trading Babe Ruth to the Yankees.

Second, there is plenty of evidence that bike lanes improve safety for everyone.

Third, anyone who endangers pedestrians, especially older, younger or disabled pedestrians, is a complete and total jerk. And probably drives exactly the same way. Never mind that a lot of the people on bikes fit in that nebulous senior category themselves.

Fourth, saying the streets will never be safe for bike riders is just another way of saying motorists are incapable of driving safely. But yes, there are ways to improve safety, even in intersections.

Fifth, the version of the Idaho Stop Law that was recently approved in Oregon only allows bicyclists to treat stop signs as yields, while still requiring bike riders to stop and wait at red lights. And it passed both houses of the legislature.

Finally, most bike riders already hold a drivers license, so they have been tested and licensed. And bike riders are subject to traffic fines, just like drivers, in every state of the union.

And as we’ve already seen, testing and licensing drivers hasn’t exactly inspired good behavior, either.

………

Talking with a driving website, Jeremy Clarkson, co-host of the Amazon Prime series The Grand Tour, and former host of Britain’s Top Gear, laced into bicycles and the people who ride them in an expletive-filled diatribe.

He particularly goes off on plans for a bike lane on the street next to where he’s sitting, insisting no one rides there, as numerous bike riders glide past behind him.

And he insists you’ll get a disease if you ride a bus.

No, really.

Although evidently, he’s including himself in that big FU to bikes and the people who ride them.

Thanks to F. Lehnerz for the heads-up.

………

Lots of generous people in today’s news, starting right here at home.

Unfortunately, that’s all the information we have now. I’ve put in a request for more information, and will let you know if we learn more.

Meanwhile, thanks to the bighearted people the Los Angeles Trial Lawyers’ Charities, 13 special needs kids and two adults now have new adaptive bicycles.

A Colorado Springs CO paramedic and firefighters teamed with a local nonprofit to give a boy a new bike after his was stolen.

Milwaukee residents help a little girl raise enough money in half an hour by selling lemonade to replace her mother’s stolen bike — including two people who paid $100 for their $1 drinks.

Kindhearted firefighters replaced a 10-year old Ohio girls’ bicycle and helmet, just two hours after her brand new bicycle was destroyed by a hit-and-run driver.

………

More proof that bikes can go where cars can’t.

https://twitter.com/HeartScotNews/status/1159196732279992321?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1159196732279992321&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2F265382-video-edinburgh-cyclist-rides-past-cars-stranded-deep-flood-water

………

This is who we share the roads with. Legally or otherwise.

………

Local

LA-based ex-pro Phil Gaimon goes on KCBS-2 to discuss his Phil’s Cookie Fondo coming this October in Malibu; the ride benefits Chef’s Cycle and No Kid Hungry to help ensure every child has something to eat.

Sixty-two-year old Claremont resident Sandra Marie Wicksted faces up to 17 years behind bars after pleading not guilty to murder for intentionally plowing her car into bike rider Leslie Pray, as well as four counts of attempted murder for trying to do it to other people, as well.

The Hoff is one of us, as David Hasselhoff goes mountain biking in Calabasas with his new Welsh wife.

 

State

A 55-year old San Diego man suffered a serious leg injury when he was hit by a driver while riding his bike, after allegedly failing to yield.

San Diego councilmember and candidate for mayor Barbara Bryophytes tries to stuff the genie back in the bottle, calling fo a moratorium, if not an outright ban, on e-scooters.

The Encinitas bikeshare system has been put on hold thanks to Trump’s trade war with China.

A young boy and his father were rescued from the base of a San Francisco cliff after the child somehow rode his bike off the edge and his father went down to help him.

Results of San Francisco’s pilot study on the city’s Valencia Street protected bike lane shows a dramatic reduction in risk to bike riders, including a 95% decrease in mid-block interactions with drivers, where dooring had previously posed a substantial risk.

Time says higher prices for Jump bikes and e-scooters are threatening the micromobility revolution in the Bay Area.

 

National

Far from being cheating, a new study shows ebike riders actually get more exercise than regular bike riders.

An Oregon appeals court says yes, bicyclists can legally pass vehicles on the right, after a bike rider was cited by a cop for unsafe passing after he was right hooked by a bus driver who’d just passed him.

More on the innovative new bike lights developed by students at the University of Colorado that bathe the user in rainbow-hued lights, as well as illuminating the road.

An ex-Denver radio host lists of a who’s who of local bike advocates as he complains about their “activist agenda,” while spouting his own anti-bike lane one. But he does claim that he’s polite to each and every one he meets, even “the obnoxious ones.”

Beyonce fans take a bike ride in Houston’s blistering heat to visit Queen Bey’s favorite haunts.

It was nice while it lasted. In the two years since St. Joseph MO opened a free bikeshare system with a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all 40 bicycles have been stolen or destroyed.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a pair of donated adaptive bicycles from a couple of adopted, autistic Kentucky children.

Finishing our Kentucky trifecta, it’s good to be king. Or mayor, anyway. The former mayor of Somerset KY walks with a lousy $100 fine for clipping a 15-year old girl while she was riding in a crosswalk with the right-of-way — then driving off, claiming he didn’t realize he’d hit her bike.

Riding a bike across the country isn’t all that rare anymore. But riding a bike 3,000 miles across the US with serious vision and hearing problems due to a genetic condition, like this Kentucky teacher, is.

Vermont’s governor is one of us, taking to his bike to see what problems bicyclists face in one county, and what they’re working on. That exactly what we should expect of all elected officials.

A New Hampshire bike rider tells drivers not to be nice by waving bicyclists through intersections, and to be predictable, instead.

A Rhode Island chef is beating his addiction to alcohol with the help of his bicycle, riding 100 miles a week and losing 40 pounds in the process.

After a Connecticut bike rider was injured in a crash, police added insult to injury — literally — by giving the victim a stern warning for riding salmon.

A vehicular cyclist in upstate New York repeats the myth that bike lanes make bicyclists less visible and safe, when the fact is, bike lanes have been repeatedly shown to improve safety. And the better the bike lane, the greater the improvement.

Things just keep getting worse in the Big Apple, as the city suffered its 19th bicycling fatality this year when a 52-year old man was collateral damage when a teenage driver ran a red light and smashed into another vehicle. And yes, the crash was captured on video, and no, you don’t really want to see it. Trust me.

As we speculated last weekend, Atlanta appears to lead the nation in scooter deaths, with twice as many this year as any other major American city.

An angry Miami man exited a restaurant, stripped naked and hopped on his bicycle, riding in the buff to a nearby store where he grabbed a pair of shorts and walked out, telling the startled clerk he was paying with his bicycle. Needless to say, he didn’t have any ID on him. Although he does have some great thighs and a definite cyclist’s tan.

 

International

Automakers seem to think the future is in micromobility, as five companies — Volkswagen, Ford, Audi, BMW and GM — explore variations on e-scooters, while Peugeot goes back to its bikemaker roots with a line of ebikes. Just don’t plan to ride them on the medieval cobbles of Bruges.

Evidently, near total hegemony on the streets isn’t enough for some drivers, as one is captured on video driving on a busy bike path in a Vancouver park.

Vancouver brightens the city’s outlook for bicyclists with a series of colorful new bike racks.

After getting hit by someone on a bicycle, an Ontario man says bike riders are too comfortable breaking the law against riding on the sidewalk. The simple fact is, no one rides on the sidewalk if they feel comfortable on the street. So the best way to stop sidewalk riding is to demand safer streets.

No bias here. Police in the UK stopped a 13-year old black kid and demanded the receipt for his bike to prove it was actually his. Because we all carry the receipt for out bikes with us every time we ride. Right?

The mother of a fallen British bike rider calls for requiring bike lights on the sale of every new bicycle.

Trump ex-wife Marla Maples is one of us, riding a bike as she vacations in Spain.

Great photos from a Czech city, as they celebrate the 150th anniversary of the country’s first bike race. Although the first caption, by way of the Chinese press, seems just a tad off.

 

Competitive Cycling

Who says women can’t compete with men? Twenty-four-year old medical student Fiona Kolbinger became the first woman to win the grueling Transcontinental Race, riding across the European continent in 10 days, two hours, and 48 minutes — beating her nearest rival by 11 hours.

A Philippine paper looks at SoCal’s Coryn Rivera and her efforts to make the US cycling team for the 2020 Olympics, even though she could compete as part of the Philippine national team.

If you couldn’t get past the Wall Street Journal’s paywall to read Jason Gay’s profile of South LA’s back-to-back US crit champ Justin Williams and the League of Cycling, a Belizean website offers a synopsis of the piece in honoring the Belizean-American cyclist.

Lance may be officially barred from bike racing, bu that doesn’t mean he can’t gloat about “blowing the doors off” Vice President Mike Pence on a Nantucket bike path.

Forget doping, now you can just cheat on Zwift.

 

Finally…

Don’t just drink your expensive single-use coffee, ride it. Who needs a barber shop when you can just use a bikeshare bike.

And if you’re going to ride your bike carrying a loaded BB gun while high on crack, put a damn light on it.

The bike, not the BB gun.

Or the crack.

 

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