Tag Archive for bike theft

Ped superhero Peatónito studies LA Vision Zero fail; Slow Streets win at LA Council, and bike rider busted for Metro murder

I’ve never been one for the whole superhero genre, preferring to find heroes in real life.

But I make an exception for Mexico City’s caped protector of pedestrians, the legendary Peatónito.

So I was pleased when he popped up in my inbox today, courtesy of an email from pedestrian advocacy group Los Angeles Walks.

Nowadays it feels like we can all use a hero or shero. So we’re happy to introduce Peatónito! He comes to us from Mexico City, where he began his masked work saving lives and slowing traffic. And Peatónito has traveled beyond, from NYC to Los Angeles, fighting against the crime of poorly designed streets & sidewalks and reckless driving through creative public demonstrations and street theater.

This summer, Los Angeles Walks partnered with the crime fighter as we trained future generations of peatónitos and organized for safe street changes. He finished his training at UCLA’s Institute of Transportaiton Studies, where he penned a pedestrian manifesto (or his graduate capstone paper) titled The Pedestrian Battle of Los Angeles: How to Empower Communities to Plan and Implement Pedestrian Road Safety Infrastructure.

And what a manifesto it is.

Even a brief summary nails the city’s gaping equity gap, as well as the experience most of us have had in fighting for a safer city, for people on two feet or two wheels.

• Walking in a non-white census tract increases the probability of being killed or severely injured by a motor vehicle in Los Angeles (Figure 1). Black people are only 8% of the population, but 20% of all pedestrian fatalities. Meanwhile, median income, vulnerable age (children and older adults), and the number of cars in a household do not have a statistically significant relationship with pedestrian road safety.

• City council members are responsive to residents’ demands and threats opposing pedestrian-focused traffic safety. Even when other city agencies and LADOT support these improvements, the city council has more power over deciding the outcome of road safety infrastructure plans. Consequently, there is a need to balance this power dynamic.

• Affluent, car-oriented residents tend to have stronger influence over council members, who prioritize their concerns over those of underserved people. This power dynamic in LA permits small groups of noisy stakeholders to hijack a conversation; they manipulate the narrative to make it seem convenient for everyone. It is vital to give more power to the people that fight for safe streets, whose voices

“The pedestrian is nobody in this city, he has been forgotten by authorities and our own citizenry. The curious and paradoxical thing is that we are all pedestrians at some moment. As such, we have forgotten ourselves.” – Peatónito

 

Here’s how Los Angeles Walks succinctly sums up Peatónito’s recommendations.

• The City must recommit and strengthen the Vision Zero program, a city-wide initiative to reduce traffic fatalities to ZERO by 2025.

• The City budget should adequately fund and staff all of Vision Zero’s goals, including the Dignity Infused Community Engagement (DICE) project.

• The state should get rid of the 85th percentile rule, a state rule that requires speed to be set at the average of ongoing traffic, which has led to what many call “speed creep.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Let’s hope he sticks around. LA pedestrians — and bike riders — could really use our own superhero.

Photos and quotes courtesy of Los AngelesWalks

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Speaking of which, it looks like people won out over cars in the City of Angels for a change.

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They got her.

Twenty-five-year old Los Angeles resident Irma Monroy was busted for the murder of a Metro employee at DTLA’s 7th Street train station, after she allegedly stabbed the victim in the chest following a heated dispute.

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There’s truly a special place in hell for the Arkansas driver who — allegedly — rammed a woman jogging on the side of the road with his pickup, then carried her off and sexually assaulted her before burying her beside a rural road.

Let’s hope he ends up in a very deep, dark pit for a very long time. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

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The bike swap meet scheduled for this weekend by the Mid City West Community Council has been postposed until the following weekend.

Which could come in handy now that the bike boom has cleaned out many bike shops.

MCW Neighborhood Bike Swap
Sat. Oct. 31st, 2020 Halloween!!
7765 Melrose Ave, (Sportie LA parking lot across from Fairfax High)
9 am  to 1 pm. 

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This is why you need to register your bike.

Now.

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Here’s your biennial reminder to get out and bike the vote.

https://twitter.com/starryflo/status/1317571256456159234

And yes, I want to be like him when I grow up.

Meanwhile, it’s nice to see a community organization pressing the candidates for LA’s 10th Council District about their stands on active transportation.

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Looks like The New Yorker is catching up on the city’s coronavirus bike boom.

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

Business owners in Bristol, England are calling for the removal of a new bike lane, claiming it’s killing their business. Because evidently, ripping it out makes far more sense than trying to entice the passing bike riders into their shops.

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

A bike-riding San Bernardino County man has been busted for a series of peeping, burglary and indecent exposure incidents.

Heartbreaking news, as a dog died five days after a bike rider allegedly kicked it in the head for no apparent reason as his owners were running with him on a Minnesota trail. Although something tells me there may be more to the story; bicyclists usually don’t kick at a dog unless it’s attacking them.

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Local

Another paper from UCLA’s Luskin Center documents a century of failed efforts to reign in LA traffic.

 

State

Sad news from San Diego, where a man apparently died of natural causes while mountain biking on a canyon trail near the Miramar National Cemetery.

Santa Barbara considers installing a docked ebike bikeshare system on the city’s main street.

More sad news, this time from Porterville, after a hit-and-run driver was arrested for killing a 15-year old boy as he rode his bike Friday night.

Cities Today asks if San Jose’s new bike plan can boost bicycling rates. Only if they actually build it, as LA bike riders can attest.

The family of an fallen teenage bike rider in Elk Grove calls for changes at the dangerous intersection where he was killed; the speed limit there was recently boosted from 35 mph to 45 mph — no doubt thanks to the deadly 85th Percentile Law.

An Oakland construction site is the safest block in the city for bike riders, after workers installed a Jersey barrier on the left side of the bike lane for a change.

 

National

Actually, that new soft, squishy bike helmet looks pretty damn cool. If it actually works, that is.

Bicycling staff and readers share their spookiest bike rides ever, just in time for Halloween. For a change, there’s no Yahoo mirror site for this one, but try opening it in a private window if the site blocks you out.

A new crowdfunded grant program is designed to help BIPOC filmmakers — Black, Indigenous and People of Color — tell their stories.

C|net offers their picks for the best ebikes.

They get it. A Texas magazine says Houston’s Vision Zero program won’t succeed if it’s done one intersection at a time, and that it calls for a “reckoning that the car-heavy city does not appear ready to make.” They could write the same story about Los Angeles.

New York has completed work on a road diet and two-way cycle track on 5th Avenue through Harlem.

Another pedestrian has been injured in a crash involving New York’s Citi Bike. Except this time, a 72-year old woman was hit by a van driver servicing the bikeshare system.

Actress Famke Janssen is one of us, as she rides her bike with a massive plastic bin on the front through New York to pick up some trash bags. And looks pretty damn stylish doing it.

 

International

Cycling News recommends the best saddles for when your ride hits the rocks.

A Toronto letter writer complains that few of the city’s bike riders wear helmets, despite a mandatory helmet law. Although the headline writer deserves to get their knuckles rapped for saying “Bike lanes are only good if cyclists wear a helmet,” which is factually incorrect, and has nothing to do with what the writer wrote.

Belfast, Northern Ireland has been named the most dangerous city in the UK for people on bicycles, with a whopping 71% of people surveyed saying they’d been involved in some sort of crash in the city.

The EuroNews website wonders why Europe’s largest bike-producing country has been so slow to ride them.

This one is going on my bike bucket list. Italy is opening an 86-mile paved bike trail around the country’s largest lake. Or maybe you’d prefer a 260-mile bike path from Paris to the Normandy coast.

How Spain’s fourth largest city became a leading bike city in just 15 years by building out an entire connected bike network all at once. As LA bicyclists have learned the hard way, we’ll never get there with a disconnected, piecemeal approach. 

Now that’s scary. A Singapore driver records himself swerving at the last moment after coming up way too fast on a bike rider taking the lane.

 

Competitive Cycling

The race moto rider Julian Alaphilippe crashed into in the Tour of Flanders says he can’t help feeling guilty about the crash. Although the people who really deserve the blame are the ones who allow motorcycles near cyclists in the peloton to begin with.

Meanwhile, Alaphilippe had surgery on his hand to repair two bones that were broken in the crash.

Cycling Weekly explains what to look for in the final week of the Giro.

VeloNews looks forward to the Vuelta, with five ways this year’s race will be unlike any other. Race organizers hope to emulate the Tour de France, which went off without a single Covid-19 infection, as opposed to the Giro, which didn’t.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you take social distancing just a little too far. And maybe naming your saddle after the #1 enema maker isn’t the best idea.

Or is it #2?

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

Thieves plunder Scottish Paralympic team, drivers slam San Jose diners, and Pasadena’s first 2-way protected bikeway

Sadly, yesterday’s lead item has been confirmed, as a woman was killed riding her bike, and her partner injured, in a Valley Glen crash Sunday night. 

Photo by Juan Pablo Serrano Arenas from Pexels.

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Seriously, how low can they go?

Scottish bike thieves plundered the country’s Paralympic team, making off with 20 high-tech handcycles and bicycles worth over $26,000 — many of which the victims had purchased themselves.

The bikes aren’t likely to turn up on this side of the Atlantic, but still.

The team deserves to get their bikes back. And the scumbags thieves deserve to go away for a long damn time.

Thanks to Carly Silver for the heads-up.

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This is who we share the outdoor restaurants with.

Apparently, it doesn’t pay to dine out in San Jose, where drivers slammed into outdoor diners twice in a single day.

Thanks to Austin Brown for the link.

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Pasadena invites you to learn more and offer your comments about the city’s first two-way protected bike lane.

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

No bias here. A London tabloid breathlessly reports that nearly two-thirds of bike riders were unaware of some traffic laws, while downplaying the fact that 41% of older drivers had the same problem, seemingly unaware of which group posed the most risk to others.

Once again, a British bike rider has been pushed off his bike by someone in a passing car, this time a man in his 70s. Seriously, there’s not a pit in hell deep enough.

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

A San Diego rabbi says he was attacked by a bike-riding teenager who hit him over the head with a closed fist while yelling a racial slur, part of a group of teens who have allegedly been harassing the temple. There is simply no excuse, ever. Period. 

There isn’t a pit deep enough for the man who ran up from behind a woman on an Illinois bike path and pulled down her pants and underwear, before riding off on a bicycle.

Police in New York are looking for a bike-riding thief snatching iPhones from people’s hands.

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Local

LA Magazine looks at the race between attorney Grace Yoo and Current L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas to replace termed out Herb Wesson in LA’s 10th Council District, who they note will determine what housing projects get built and who gets bike lanes in the district.

 

State

She gets it. A La Jolla resident calls on the town to redesign its streets to curb speeding drivers.

Bay Area bike riders will have limited access to the Bay Bridge during a roadway realignment project.

Sad news from NorCal, where a bike rider was killed in a crash with an Anderson cop while allegedly riding his bike in the fast lane of a local highway; needless to say, police were quick to absolve the officer of any blame.

 

National

Wired says the US needs to adopt the industrial policies of the Asian countries we rely on for bicycles to overcome our own bike shortage.

Bicycling gives you an eight-point pre-ride checklist to help you get back home from your next ride. And yes, you can read it on Yahoo if you’ve fallen prey to the magazine’s draconian paywall.

A 70-year old Oregon bike rider was killed by a 93-year old driver who just kept going after the fatal crash. Yet another tragic reminder that driving shouldn’t be a lifelong privilege, and there comes a time when we all need to give up the keys for the sake of others around them.

Good kid. An eleven-year old Texas boy rode his bike 18 miles to raise awareness for pregnancy and infant loss in memory of a stillborn baby.

Chicago Streetsblog says the city should use the new San Jose bike plan as a model to reboot bicycling in the Windy City. Then again, it wasn’t too long ago that LA’s bike plan was hailed as a model for other cities, and you know how that turned out.

Police in Illinois are looking for a hit-and-run semi driver who kept going after injuring a pair of bicyclists, one critically.

It takes a special kind of jerk to steal the recumbent bike a Michigan man built to ride across the US after recovering from a heart attack.

A crowdfunding campaign has raised nearly $2,400 in a single day to help a popular Ohio handyman replace his bike after he was struck by a driver.

A pair of teenaged Virginia drivers face up to 20 years behind bars for killing a 59-year old bike rider while allegedly street racing.

 

International

Fast Company says sleek e-cargo bikes represent the future of delivery.

It takes a major schmuck to steal the flowers from a roadside shrine to a young English woman killed in a collision while riding her bike.

A British man overcame physical and mental obstacles to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, just over a year after he was nearly killed when a driver slammed into his bike. Then again, he could have just ridden his bicycle up the mountain.

Heart-stopping video of London boy riding his bike out from behind a large truck, only to get hit by a van coming from the opposite direction — then he just picks his bike up and walks away.

A Scottish man dusts off his old bike, and learns to overcome his fears and love bicycling again.

Bicycling looks at Afghan women defying the country’s embedded patriarchy by taking to their bicycles. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you out.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling Tips goes deep into how on Jon Ornée set a new record for the fastest century, set while drafting a minivan on a NASCAR track at an average speed of 42.6 mph, just one year after he was struck by a driver.

American cyclist Chloe Dygert tells her local paper she has no regrets about her horrific crash while defending her world time trial championship, and remains focused on recovering in time for next year’s Tokyo Olympics.

Sky Sports considers the unfulfilled career of Britain’s first Black cycling champ, who never made the country’s Olympics team despite winning three national titles, for reasons they suggest should be obvious.

 

Finally…

Yes, he may be a bike thief, but at least he’s wearing a mask. Is there anything cargo bikes can’t carry?

And now you, too, can have your very own replica of this year’s Tour de France winning bike for the low, low price of thirty grand.

For that price, I want the real thing. And the yellow jersey that comes with it.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

LA Times endorses Ryu’s policy ripoffs, a genuine Good Samaritan, and Amazon is or isn’t selling a cheap Peloton knockoff

I’m having major problems with my neuropathy tonight, and really struggling to get today’s post online. 

So let’s go with a little shorter edition today, and save anything we missed for tomorrow. 

The cool thing about neuropathy is you get to enjoy the sensation of demons ripping the flesh from your bones, without the inconvenience of actually dying and eternal damnation and all that. 

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Somehow, the LA Times endorsed David Ryu for reelection in LA’s 4th Council District, despite noting that many of his recently adopted progressive policies were taken from challenger Nithya Raman.

Ryu’s Road to Damascus conversion from one of the council’s most auto-centric, anti-bike councilmembers to one of most progressive members of the body has come in just the last several months, as he faced a serious challenge from a genuinely progressive, environmental and bike friendly advocate for the homeless.

It’s surprising that the Times fell for what looks to be a self-serving attempt to hold onto his job at all costs.

And it raises a serious question of sexism, when the paper’s editorial board prefers the man who stole his policy positions over the woman they admit actually originated them.

It makes far more sense to follow the endorsements of Calbike, Bike the Vote LA and Streets For All and cast your ballot for Nithya Raman.

I know I will.

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After a Michigan woman posted on Facebook that her bike was stolen during her ten-hour shift at an Ann Arbor medical center, a total stranger spotted it listed for sale online.

So he set up a meeting with the seller, who wanted $850 for the bike. When the man refused, the seller tried negotiating. But the man again refused, saying he knew the bike was stolen.

The thief finally apologized, but asked for help because he’d fallen on hard times.

So the woman got her bike back.

And the thief got a $100 gift card from the man, along with an offer for a job at one of his auto shops.

If you ever wondered what it means to be a Good Samaritan, that’s pretty much it.

Although it may be awhile before the thief can take advantage of the offer, since they turned him in to the police to answer for his crime.

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Amazon is now selling their own Peloton knockoff in partnership with fitness startup Echelon for just $499.

Or maybe they’re not.

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

Police in Ohio are looking for a man who stole a cash drawer from a local thrift store, before tucking it under his arm and riding off on his bike.

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Local

Attorneys for Dijon Kizzee say the Compton bike rider was lying on the ground when sheriff’s deputies shot him 15 times.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton says the new Elysian Valley walk/bike bridge is really taking shape.

 

State

A San Diego County Supervisor teams with local advocacy groups to establish a program loaning out ebikes to reduce automobile use, with an option to own them at the end of the two-week program.

 

National

After he calms down, a very forgiving writer for Singletrack refuses to blame the thief that stole his Surly mountain bike, and is just glad it wasn’t one of the bikes belonging to his bike courier neighbors.

After completing a 750-mile ride through the Rockies to talk with average Americans, a reporter for an Idaho public radio station concludes that the US is an unwieldy quilt slowly being torn apart by forces yanking at the threads until they fray.

Bike friendly Portland isn’t so friendly this year, as a rising traffic death toll shows the pandemic isn’t changing driving habits.

A Minnesota city settles an environmental lawsuit by agreeing to mitigate damage from a planned mountain bike trail through through one of the last known habitats of the critically endangered rusty patched bumblebee. Although a better solution would be to build the damn trail somewhere else.

A bike ride will follow the route of the Chicago Race Riot of 1919 to commemorate the victims and raise funds for a community bike shop dedicated to Chicago’s most underserved communities.

 

International

An Indian woman tried biking to work once, and swears she’ll never do it again.

Residents of Mumbai and Kolkata marked Tuesday’s World Car Free Day with a group bike ride.

They get it. The Queensland, Australia DOT shuts down an argument over whether bicyclists should pay registration fees by reminding readers that bicyclists pay for road upkeep through their taxes, just like everyone else.

Yikes. A review of a Sydney, Australia popup bike lane installed during the coronavirus lockdown found several conditions that pose an “intolerable” risk of injury or death.

 

Competitive Cycling

A North Carolina student newspaper says surprise Slovenian Tour de France winner Tadej Pogačar’s victory ranks among the greatest in cycling history. Meanwhile, Road.cc examines the Colnagos he rode to a last-minute victory.

A pair of writers for The Conversation say cycling’s entrenched macho culture means head injuries too often go ignored.

Life is cheap in Lesotho, where the kingdom’s the top cyclist is finally back on his bike, six months after he was seriously injured when an unlicensed taxi driver slammed into a group of four riders near the finish of a race; needless to say, the driver walked with a suspended sentence.

 

Finally…

Maybe using a hammer to retrieve your lost Air Pods from someone else’s wall isn’t the best idea — especially if you’re carrying heroin on your bike. Then again, trying to drive a Jeep on a mountain bike trail isn’t the best idea, either.

And bicyclists find lots of things when they ride.

But a burning car with a body in the trunk usually isn’t one of them.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

LA shrinks All Black Lives Matter mural because cars, how Vision Zero should work, and bike thieves in action

LA had a chance to do the right thing for once.

The city had the perfect opportunity to respond to community demands and build a pedestrian plaza around the All Black Lives Matter mural at Hollywood & Highland.

Instead, the city decided to shrink the mural painted on Hollywood Blvd for the massive June March down to a single lane in the center of the roadway, so as not to take a single inch of the roadway from drivers.

So yes, all Black lives will still matter on the streets of Hollywood.

They just seem to matter more if they’re in a car.

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This is how Vision Zero is supposed to work.

Boston suburb Cambridge, Massachusetts is installing a quick-build separated bike lane, just weeks after a man was killed in a collision with a semi driver while riding his bike.

Needless to say, this is the exact opposite of what usually happens in Los Angeles.

In fact, I can only recall one time a bike lane was installed after a bicyclist was killed. And even then, it took over two years.

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Former UFC champ Connor McGregor is one of us, riding shirtless in the Monaco rain.

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

As we mentioned yesterday, Baltimore police are looking for a pickup driver who dangerously harassed people participating in a community bike ride, before intentionally slamming into a group of riders, seriously injuring one man.

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

Once again, a British bike rider has been charged with killing an elderly pedestrian; the 22-year old bicyclist faces a manslaughter count for knocking down a 72-year old man as he was walking home from his job with the National Health Service.

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Local

Metro wants your input on proposed first mile/last mile improvements around the Sepulveda station on the erstwhile Orange Line, to make it easier and safer to walk to and from the station.

Streets For All will host a virtual happy hour with LADOT head Seleta Reynolds on September 9th.

 

State

California state legislators amended Assembly Bill 1286, removing a poison pill provision banning liability waivers that could have forced bikeshare and e-scooter providers out of business.

No surprise here, as bike thefts are up in San Mateo.

 

National

Outside tells you what you need to know about bike lights. I can attest to the benefits of daytime lights, which dramatically reduced the rate of close calls once I started using them.

Bicycling offers everything you need to know about wearing bike shorts, but were afraid to ask. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if the Bicycling site blocks you out. But seriously, just skip the underwear. 

I’m not sure what it means when Bicycling drops its paywall to tell you “how to handle spit and snot safely” during the coronavirus pandemic. Hint: Just don’t.

CNN says cargo bikes are the Swiss Army knives of bicycles, and could be the SUV of the future. Which is a hell of a lot better than saying they’re the new toilet paper.

A new Portland study shows that if just 15% of drivers switched to ebikes, it could result in a 12% reduction in carbon emissions.

This is how it’s supposed to be done, too. Portland is replacing car parking with separated bike lanes after a street gets repaved. Unfortunately, while Los Angeles has sped up repaving projects, they haven’t been installing bike lanes, even on streets that call for it in the city’s Mobility Plan.

A new Green Bay, Wisconsin coffee shop and cafe will deliver your meal by ebike.

An upstate New York man rode his bike continuously for 24 hours straight to raise funds for his grandson, who is suffering from leukemia; so far he’s raised over twice the $5,000 goal.

New York’s famed Metropolitan Museum of Art is offering a free bike valet service for the next month, starting with Saturday’s official reopening.

Over 100 New Yorkers are riding south to Washington DC to raise awareness about the dangers of Biking while Black, while advocating for “safer cycling opportunities for all people of color;” the group plans to arrive in time for Friday’s March on Washington.

A DC high school teacher is asking for bicycles and helmets to help make kids currently cooped up inside by the pandemic more active and keep them off the streets. By getting them on the streets, evidently.

When a first-year student at North Carolina’s Appalachian State University shipped a new, unassembled bicycle to herself at the school, she didn’t expect kindhearted staffers at the university post office to put it together for her.

It’s a sad commentary when the life of a Florida bike rider is only worth four damn sentences in the local newspaper. And one of those is about his lack of a helmet.

 

International

Cycling Weekly thinks you need to up your sock game. And your bike-riding kids could dress better, too.

A travel site recommends the five best bike paths in Columbia for your next trip to South America.

How Rad went from box office bomb to BMX cult favorite, even if it was shot in Canada.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a driver walked with just a warning for the wrong-way crash that left a bike rider with a broken back.

No bias here. Sixty-four percent of Brits think people on bicycles should be forced to carry liability insurance; surprisingly, even bike riders were split on the issue.

Dubai is rapidly becoming a bike-friendly city, with plans to build over 400 miles of cycle tracks within the next five years.

 

Competitive Cycling

McLaren is taking its ball and going home, after just one year co-sponsoring the Team Bahrain McLaren cycling team.

Staffers for Britain’s Cyclist magazine offer their picks for the Tour de France, going well beyond the yellow jersey to categories like most stage wins and biggest surprise. Although I’d have to agree with the guy who doesn’t think the race will actually happen. Or finish, anyway.

A Kenyon sports site says the word impossible doesn’t exist in four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome’s cycling road of success. Maybe it should, because it’s literally impossible for him to win a fifth Tour this year, because his team didn’t even enter him in the race.

 

Finally…

Seriously, if you’re carrying meth and a pipe on your bike, stop for the damn stop sign, already. If you’re going to tell the cops you borrowed a bike from a friend after stealing it at knifepoint, make sure the victim isn’t still carrying the receipt.

And this is what bike thieves look like. Or would be, if they knew how to use their own power tools.

https://twitter.com/blogTO/status/1298616358754816001

 

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

CA bill could effectively ban bikeshare and e-scooters, ride for Black and Indigenous mental health, and hot bikes on LetGo

An op-ed in the LA Daily News op-ed questions why the California legislature is targeting dockless bikeshare and e-scooters.

The piece, written by Santa Monica Spoke director Cynthia Rose; Circulate San Diego ED Colin Parent, Finish the Ride and Streets Are For Everyone ED amian Kevitt, and Streets For All founder Michael Schneider, says that regardless of its intent, AB 1286 would “create new rules so onerous that micromobility operators may no longer be able to operate in California.”

Which doesn’t sound like the intended outcome.

Or the right one.

This bill doesn’t just impact newer micromobility like electric bikes and scooters, but extends to traditional, city-sponsored bike share programs as well, including the long running Bay Wheels system in the Bay Area and Metro Bike Share in Los Angeles. As our state grapples with so many pressing issues, including the economic and climate crisis, why is the legislature threatening our most sustainable and lowest cost transportation options?

First and foremost, this bill prohibits micromobility operators from using waivers of liability – the same waivers everyone signs when renting a car or taking a yoga class. No other industry is subject to a waiver provision such as the one proposed by this bill. By gratuitously singling out micromobility operators, the legislature is opening the door to unnecessary litigation, and operators have made clear they will likely have to leave California if they are not able use these waivers. Our cities will be harmed in the process, as waivers shield cities from frivolous lawsuits as well. California law already holds operators accountable and responsible for faulty devices to rightfully protect consumers, so there is simply no need to pursue these changes.

It’s understandable that legislators would want to improve liability laws regulating micromobility.

But this is like using a cannon to kill a mouse in your living room.

Hopefully, cooler heads will prevail, and the legislature will give itself a timeout to work with advocates and company representatives, and consider more carefully just how to improve safety without forcing users back into their cars.

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Former international pro basketball player Damen Bell-Holter, who was with the Boston Celtics just long enough to grab a sandwich, is hoping to have a greater impact by riding to raise funds and awareness for mental healthcare for Black and Indigenous men.

The founder of Break the (Bi)Cycle, Bell-Holter will be leading a 1,500-mile ride from Bellingham, Washington to San Diego, stopping to speak with various tribes along the way.

Bell-Holter said he’d seen similar campaigns, but the topic is one he’s long held close, speaking and raising awareness of across Alaska and elsewhere. There’s a large gap in the availability and effectiveness of mental health care for Black and Indigenous men, especially in Alaska, Bell-Holter said, resulting in intergenerational trauma that can lead to some of the highest rates of death by suicide and substance misuse in the country.

“I’ve been bouncing my head off the wall about this for a few years. There’s so much violence and abuse in Alaska. What does prevention look like,” Bell-Holter said. “There’s a lot of trauma that outside people don’t understand. Non-Native and non-Indigenous people don’t understand there’s a lot of intergenerational trauma that’s not visible from the outside.”

The goal is to raise $100,000, which will be split 20 ways, resulting in just $5,000 each for the various tribes and communities.

You can contribute through the group’s crowdfunding page. So far, they’ve raised just over $3,600 in seven weeks.

Maybe we can all share this one, and get some support for a worthy cause.

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A bike theft victim calls attention to an online chop shop hawking hot bikes on LetGo. And the problem of stolen bikes being sold on the platform in general.

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This is what Share the Road really means.

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

After an 18-year old Virginia man’s bike was hit by a pickup driver while riding with a group of other riders, he responded by breaking the driver’s mirror. And the driver responded by attacking him with a stick.

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

See above.

Manchester United defender Victor Lindelof rode to the rescue in his Swedish hometown, tackling a bike-riding purse snatcher who’d just robbed a 90-year old woman. Although the thief probably took a dive in hopes of drawing a penalty kick.

………

Local

Streetsblog looks at the new left side, parking protected bike lanes on Grand Street in DTLA, which continues to get safer and more rideable, while most of Los Angeles languishes.

That last item said “most of Los Angeles,” because of two new protected bike lanes on Broadway and Avalon Blvd in South LA, which is the other area currently seeing safety improvements in the city.

A Pasadena website offers more information on last weekend’s Black Lives Matter ride, which visited the sites of five violent police encounters in the Rose City.

 

State

A Huntington Beach real estate agent and rock drummer remembers his halcyon days as former Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rogers bike buddy.

Newport Beach Police will be focusing on bike and pedestrian safety enforcement next month. So ride to the letter of the law when you’re in the city. And maybe even put a foot down if you see a patrol car. 

Imperial Beach has approved construction of a new 6.4-mile bike path connecting the international border with San Diego County’s Bayshore Bikeway.

The Bay Area Bike to Work Day will be changed to Bike to Wherever Days, after being moved from the usual May date to September 24th. That compares to Los Angeles County, where this year’s Bike to Work Day has apparently been postponed to when hell freezes over.

 

National

Bicycling suggests six “crazy easy” ways to welcome rookie riders into the wonderful world of bicycling; as usual, you can read the article on Yahoo if the magazine’s paywall shuts you out.

A men’s website suggests hitting the road on one of the “seven best bicycles available now.” As usual, the list isn’t remotely accurate or comprehensive; on the other hand, any list that includes a fixie, a foldie and Schwinn’s reborn Krate bike can’t be all bad.

ZDNet offers advice for the ebike curious.

Apple’s new iOS14 is finally making Apple Maps useful for people on bicycles, allowing you to select the fastest route, or one using busy or less busy roads.

A brick building in St. Louis collapsed unexpectedly over the weekend, likely destroying many of the 700 children’s bikes stored there as part of a program to give kids a free bike after completing a bike safety course.

Once again, a dangerous driver managed to stay on the road until it was too late. A Chicago man was arrested for continuing to drive with his license suspended due to DUI, after killing an 83-year old man riding a bike, claiming he just didn’t see the man riding in front of him before stomping on the gas pedal. Unfortunately, he’ll likely walk away with a slap on the wrist, while his innocent victim paid with his life.

A DC woman was lucky to get her stolen bike back after she spotted the thief riding it and was able to wave down a passing patrol car; it helped that she had a photo of the bike and the serial number on her cellphone. Hint, hint.

Georgia bike riders turned out for a short 2.23 mile ride in memory of Ahmaud Arbery, six months after he was gunned down by a trio of self-appointed vigilantes.

 

International

A new study suggests that looking at happy pictures before your ride will result in less suffering during it. And unhappy pictures will have the opposite effect.

The UK’s Spectator magazine recommends 14 bicycling routes around the world they say rival the Tour de France. Which might be remotely accurate if the Tour de France was just a leisurely one-day ride around a local landmark.

London bike riders offer tips on riding a bike in the city, almost all of which apply virtually anywhere.

An Edinburgh woman calls for redesigning a floating bus stop, saying she was furious after she and her son were nearly hit by a bike rider “who came out of nowhere” as she stepped across a cycle track to get to her bus. She’s got a point. But no one ever comes out of nowhere. And nearly getting hit isn’t exactly news, especially after apparently failing to look both ways.

Berlin’s new bike lanes have failed to improve safety, as fatalities rise and advocates call for greater regulations on large trucks. Meanwhile, the city’s Green Party wants to charge SUV owners more to park their behemoth vehicles. Yes, please.

A Malaysian man is waiting for borders to reopen so he can get back on the road, two years after riding away from his law career to bike around the world.

 

Competitive Cycling

The union representing professional cyclists rejected criticism over unsafe conditions at this year’s races, after several riders questioned what good the group was if it couldn’t do something about it.

 

Finally…

If you can’t cut the lock on the bike you’re trying to steal, just take the bike rack with you. Evidently, Sgt. Preston of the Yukon would trade his dog team for an ebike these days.

And seriously, don’t ride if you have Covid-19.

Or think you might have.

Period.

……

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

Climate mayors call for 15 minute cities, thief ransacks Anaheim bike room, and trade your privacy for Road ID discount

A report from the C40 Cities group promotes the new Paris model of putting all necessities within a 15 minute biking or walking distance.

The climate group, currently led by LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, encourages the model as a response to municipal budgets ravaged by Covid-19.

Which makes it worth noting that the “world’s climate mayor” is doing nothing of the sort in his own city, except for encouraging greater density.

Which is problematic in itself, after a number of current and former city officials have been implicated in a bribery scheme to approve building projects.

As we’ve noted before, cities around the world have taken advantage of the lighter traffic brought on by the pandemic to make temporary, and sometimes permanent, changes to encourage more biking and walking.

Los Angeles, on the other hand, has done absolutely nothing outside of the Downtown area, where Councilmember Jose Huizar has been a driving force behind a move to Complete Streets.

He is also charged with being the ringleader behind the bribery scheme.

Which pretty much sums up the current state of the city.

………

A bike thief was caught on video ransacking an Anaheim building’s bike room. Which is exactly why I don’t recommend using them.

Bike rooms give the illusion of security while providing an enticing target for thieves. Better to find space in your home to keep your bikes inside.

And register your damn bike already.

https://twitter.com/lemusss29/status/1287897963927281664

………

Road ID is offering half off to VIP members starting tomorrow — if you’re willing to sacrifice your privacy to become one by signing up for texts.

I wear mine every time I ride my bike. And any other time I leave home.

But I also prefer to maintain a little privacy, and not get spammed with commercial messages every time I look at my phone.

………

Kiss guitarist Paul Stanley is one of us.

Orlando Bloom is one of us, too.

………

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

No surprise here, as Oregon bike riders report a rising tide of road rage incidents in recent months. Everyone is stressed because of the coronavirus and the resulting restrictions, which means too many drivers will end up taking it out on us.

Seriously? A moonlighting Arizona cop says he felt his life was threatened by a mountain biker who ignored no trespassing signs at a golf course while looking for a formerly accessible trailhead — so he tackled the rider off his bike and pulled a loaded gun on him during the scuffle, while insisting the victim somehow lunged off his bike at him.

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

Chicago police appear stumped about why a man on a bike shot and killed a Rastafarian community activist, though conservatives are quick to blame his surprising support for Donald Trump for his murder.

A New York bike rider went on a racist and homophobic obscenity-laced rant after an Asian driver honked at him, then faked an injury claiming the driver hit his “$11,000 bike.”

https://www.instagram.com/tv/CDTvX1UhjFe/?utm_source=ig_embed

……..

Local

Metro Bike is offering a bikeshare relief program through this month, with discounted passes ranging from a single $1 ride or 24-hour pass, to a $100 pass for a full year.

LA-area streets are being reimagined as outdoor dining spaces; the question is whether it will last post-pandemic. Actually, the real question is why we can find street space for restaurant patrons, but we can’t manage to find any for bike lanes.

KCRW’s Steve Chiotakis talks with Lex Roman, author of a guide to where to vote and how government works, about how you can become a more civically engaged Angeleno. Because most of us need to.

 

State

Encinitas has finished work on protected bike lanes and other infrastructure improvements, including mosaic art panels designed by local students and artists

Groups of wheelie-popping teens are ignoring the dismount signs on Santa Barbara’s newly pedestrianized State Street.

The Bay Area’s East Bay Times recommends more than a dozen “great, scenic bike trails” crisscrossing the region.

Yreka’s Leslie Burley-Cobb has been nominated for the BMX Hall of Fame; she was one of the first women in the sport in the late ’70s, collecting 268 trophies before she retired in 1985. Raise your hand if you knew there even was a BMX Hall of Fame. And yes, mine are firmly in my pockets. 

 

National

A Harvard professor is nearing the end of his cross-country bike ride to call attention to Black Lives Matter and Black Birders Week.

A writer for Gizmodo says riding an ebike has changed her entire perspective on how we get around.

Yahoo Life! says you don’t need bike shorts or clip-in shoes for these “cute” commuter bikes. Then again, you don’t need them for any other bikes, either.

“Beloved” international security expert and self-defense trainer Dave Acosta was killed in a Utah mountain biking crash last week.

Beloit, Wisconsin’s Bike Elves program has refurbished and given away 5,380 bicycles over the last nine years, after being founded by a man suffering from early onset Alzheimer’s.

An Illinois driver is being held on $1 million bail for reckless homicide after killing one bike rider and critically injuring another while fleeing from police.

Minnesota has found a used for abandoned mine pits by converting them to 30 miles of mountain bike trails.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A well-known Memphis minister died after being taken off life support following a bicycling collision last week.

The worldwide bike boom continues, as Boston bike shops are running out of bicycles.

Now that’s more like it. The New York Times offers tips on how to stay safe on mass transit — and includes bikeshare as a recommended alternative.

Drive-in movies are popping up all over New York; bike-in movies, not so much.

A New York novelist says riding through the pandemic has changed her perspective of the city.

 

International

Road.cc previews the bike tech trends for next year.

Rapha was justifiably criticized for water bottles printed with a message that could lead to eating disorders if anyone actually followed it.

After a London cabbie posted photos of Dutch parents riding their kids to school on cargo bikes, sarcastically asking if that’s really the kind of morning school run people want to see, the public responded with a resounding “Yes.”

A Croatian expat living in London says helmets, Lycra and flashing lights have become part of his new reality exploring the city by bike in the wake of the coronavirus lockdown.

Five Northern England bicycle trails to add to your bike bucket list. Unless maybe you’d rather combine beer and bikes on five trails surrounding Prague in the Czech Republic. I’ll take both, thank you. And they make some pretty decent beer in the UK, too.

The Irish Times recounts 12 reasons to start riding a bike, almost all of which apply equally well on this side of the Atlantic.

Take a nearly 1,250 mile ride over trees and beneath the water on the trails of the Belgian home of stinky cheese.

Bicyclists have been unofficially banned from the highways of Jalandhar, India, even though it’s legal to ride there; despite the law, riders are being told to stay off the roads following the death of a bike rider.

A Philippines foundation is changing lives one bicycle at a time by donating mountain bikes to people struggling to hold onto their jobs in the face of the pandemic.

Red Bull Australia picks their ten favorite gravel bike shoes, as well as eleven cycling jerseys that apparently don’t care where you wear them.

Competitive Cycling

Dutch cyclist Ellen Van Dijk won the Strade Bianche gravel race on a bike borrowed from a teammate, after her Trek-Segafredo team was struck by thieves the night before the race. Meanwhile, Wout van Aert won on the men’s side.

Former Tour de France winner Vincenzo Nibali suffered an injured hand in the Strade Bianche, just one of the 124 cyclists who abandoned the race in 104° temperatures out of the 166 who started; only 45 cyclists finished the women’s race.

 

Finally…

High-end bike options for people who have more dollars than sense, and are willing to part with a lot of the former.

And don’t dare ride a whole six miles below the speed limit after lunch with you mom.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

Paralyzed Long Beach man’s handcycle stolen, dangerous Circle K parking lots, and carrying a kid across China on a bike

Seriously, what kind of schmuck would steal a disabled man’s handcycle?

Long Beach’s Richard Dahl was paralyzed two years ago, just a month after graduating from college, and used the recumbent bike to take him places his legs no longer can.

According to KABC-7,

Dahl had received the bike through a $6,000 grant.

He says the thief didn’t just steal his bike, but also took part of his independence.

“What this individual stole wasn’t just a bike, it wasn’t just a handcycle, it wasn’t just a $6,000 object, it was my independence. It was my ability to ride,” Dahl said.

Hopefully someone will spot the bike before it gets sold or dismantled.

If not, if anyone wants to start a crowdfunding campaign to buy him a new one, I’ll be happy to feature it here.

………

Apparently, shopping at a Circle K convenience store can be bad for your health.

A Colorado man faces a murder charge for a fight that began with a dispute over a gold bicycle in a Circle K parking lot.

And two Florida men are charged with attempted murder for attempting to smash their car into a man on a bicycle after spotting him shopping at Circle K, then shooing him when they caught up with him again.

………

Think your cross-country ride was tough?

A Chinese dad took a 71-day bike ride across the country with his young daughter in a child seat.

………

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

British police are investigating an alleged hate crime where a group of teenagers verbally abused a man riding a bicycle and threw rocks at his bike. Although in typical British fashion, they fail to mention what racial, ethnic, religious and/or sexual group he was being targeted for.

Police in Perth, Australia are looking for a pair of moped riders who pushed a man off his bike on a local bike path.

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

Not every violent assault starts in a convenience store parking lot, though; a British Columbia man got a measly five years for killing another man, stopping his bike to kick the victim in the head with steel-toed boots, in a dispute over encroaching on his preferred panhandling spot.

………

Local

Call it yet another LADOT fail. At a time when new bike riders are begging for safe bikeways, the city gives them these sad North Hollywood sharrows — even though there’s more than enough room for a protected bike lane instead. As we’ve noted before, sharrows appear to exist only to help drivers improve their aim.

The Malibu Times wants to introduce you to the wealthy beachside city’s mountain bike-riding mayor.

Long Beach’s Studebaker Road is getting a five-mile long protected bike lane, thanks to funding from Metro.

 

State

The Canyon News looks at California’s bike boom, and says hopefully it won’t take another crisis to get people riding. Although maybe they shouldn’t illustrate a story about LA collisions rising with a photo of a mangled New York police cruiser.

A Bakersfield op-ed says the San Joaquin Valley city benefits from having more people on bicycles, and is lucky to have a robust bicycle network.

Mammoth Mountain wants you to come there to ride your new offroad ebike, opening a new trail for ped-assist mountain bikes.

 

National

At last, a Segway you might actually want to ride. Even if it doesn’t have pedals.

Livestrong offers a step-by-step guide to start riding a bike for people over 50. Although a writer for the Wall Street Journal says it can be hazardous to your dignity. If you can get past the Journal’s paywall, that is. And as if I had any left.

Refinery 29 wants to keep you looking your best on your bike, with eight cool and comfy women’s outfits without a shred of Lycra.

This is why you should always carry ID on your bike. Police in Lone Peak, Utah are struggling to identify a man who was struck by a driver while riding his bike on Saturday.

Gear Patrol recommends buying a premium used bike from Colorado’s online Pro’s Closet marketplace.

That’s more like it. A Montana drunk driver will spend the next eight years behind bars for killing a woman riding her bike while driving home from a Christmas party.

A Montana food distributors organization teamed with the local Rotary club to build and donate 195 bicycles for members of the Crow Nation.

Once again, bike riders are heroes, after a San Antonio TX couple jumped off their bikes to help rescue victims from a burning plane crash.

A 61-year old Minnesota man is riding 6,000 miles from LA to New York to raise funds for breast cancer research.

They get it. A Michigan town is offering residents a $150 rebate on the purchase of an ebike to help the city achieve carbon-neutrality in the next ten years.

A bighearted stranger gave a seven-year old Ohio girl a new bicycle after someone stole hers.

A bike-riding New York priest is planning his first century ride to inspire people and raise funds for a Catholic food pantry.

Probably not the best idea to try to steal a bike cop’s bicycle during dueling pro and anti-police protests in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Kindhearted Savannah, Georgia cops gave a seven-year old boy a new bicycle after Covid-19 cancelled his birthday party.

No, “anger issues” is not an excuse to fight a cop who tried to stop a Florida man for riding his bike into traffic.

 

International

Pez Cycling News looks at the brief rise and fall of spine bikes, made in the early years after the turn of the century with half-carbon/half steel frames. Like my 2004 LeMond, for instance.

How to get the best stopping power from your rim brakes.

Bike Radar makes the case for why you only need a gravel bike.

Four people have been arrested for a hit-and-run crash that injured an off-duty British cop as he was riding his bike, though police say he wasn’t targeted.

A Glasgow paper takes a ride through the city to see what’s changed thanks to the city’s the new bicycling measures.

A massive e-cargo bike is patrolling the streets of The Hague on a mission to collect abandoned plastic products.

Hundreds of Turkish bicyclists rode to call for safer streets after a 19-year old bike rider was killed by a drunk driver.

Bollywood star Sara Ali Khan is one of us

Bicycling is up in Delhi, as people respond to the coronavirus crisis by taking to their bicycles.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling Tips offers an on-the-ground perspective of how the coronavirus crisis affected bike racing.

The BBC retells the tale of how the Flying Scotsman Graeme Obree became a world record holder on his own homemade bicycle.

 

Finally…

Forget parked cars, now we have to deal with giant saw blades in the bike lane. Your next bike could have a built-in wine cooler and charcuterie board.

And we may have to deal with angry LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about hungry bike-seat eating bears.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

The case of the purloined pedal car, a call for safe & equitable streets for all, and you really can carry anything on a bike

Maybe he was just joyriding.

Or maybe the thief figured out something things are just too hard to sell.

Either way, this sort-of bike theft turned out to be very short-lived, and the purloined pedal car was swiftly recovered.

And will soon be back with owner, if it isn’t already.

No word on who took it, though.

Thanks to Lynn Ingram, Ted Faber and The Mailer Demon for the heads-up.

………

Los Angeles may finally be fixing its streets.

But it’s leaving anyone who’s not in a car behind in the process.

Seriously.

Do it, already.

………

Remember this the next time someone says you can’t carry anything on a bike.

Thanks to W. Corylus for the heads-up.

………

Today’s common theme is improving your DIY bike repair and transport skills.

Bicycling wants to teach you how to use tire levers. They just happen to have the same ones I do, too.

Gear Junkie offers instructions on how to swap out your bike pedals in five easy steps.

An Orlando FL TV station wants to teach you how to properly carry a bike on your car. Although blocking the car’s rear license plate, like they show, is illegal in California.

………

North America’s “premier conference for walking, bicycling and placemaker professionals” is going virtual this August, along with everything else.

……..

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

A Glasgow bar owner threatened to smash a bike rider’s “fucking head in” when the bicyclist stopped to film his car blocking a bike lane, along with several other scofflaw vehicles.

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

A bike-riding Los Angeles man faces assault charges after spitting on a woman at a South Pasadena Black Lives Matter protest, then throwing a rock at her when she recognized him two days later.

………

Local

Bebe Rexha is one of us, as she goes for a ride in an LA canyon. Although the British press seems more obsessed with her behind than anything else.

 

State

A San Francisco man suffered life-threatening injuries when he was struck by a driver while riding his bike.

 

National

Treehugger says bike touring may be the perfect way to get around in the summer of Covid-19.

Mountain biking is benefitting from the coronavirus bike boom, with trail use up anywhere from 100% to 500% throughout the US.

Forbes recommends the best bicycling gear and accessories for women.

That tragic Glendale, Arizona crash that took the life of two people got even more tragic on Monday, when it was revealed that the victims were a father and his daughter, who was riding home on her dad’s handlebars.

Now that’s a bike ride. Three Colorado men rode 203 miles and climbed two 14,000 foot mountains — with a total elevation of 23,000 feet — in a single day to call attention to ending the stigma of depression and mental illness.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A Houston woman was known for carrying extra food on her bike for stray dogs; they may go hungry now, after a driver stoned on PCP ran her down as she was riding.

Kindhearted residents in a Minnesota neighborhood pitched in to buy a new bike for a young boy after his was stolen, and another bike left in its place.

Kindhearted Punxsutawney PA police officers used raffle proceeds from a bike rodeo to buy new bicycles for six kids.

 

International

Road.cc recommends the best cheap cycling computers. “Cheap” being the operative term, with prices starting at the equivalent of just $10.

Finally, someone’s taking a page from LA’s book for a change, as Montreal decides to allow bicyclists to ride in at least some of the city’s bus only lanes.

Once again, an elderly London pedestrian has been killed by a hit-and-run bike rider. A reminder that you have just as much responsibility to stop after a crash as a driver does, no matter where you ride.

The bike boom isn’t enough to offset the driving bust for Britain’s biggest bike dealer, which has the misfortune of selling auto parts and repairs, as well as bicycles.

An Edinburg writer says the city can cut bicycle and pedestrian deaths to zero if ordinary people counter misinformation with facts, and say “Enough!”

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole the ebike a Scottish doctor used to visit sick and vulnerable patients at their homes.

A Scottish letter writer says the increase in bike riders demands the adoption of presumed liability, which assumes that the driver of the larger and more dangerous vehicle is responsible for any collision, because they have a greater duty to avoid it.

When Europe shut down due to the coronavirus, a Scottish college student couldn’t get a flight back to Greece. So he bought a bike, and spent the next 48 days riding 2,175 back home.

A new Spanish conversion kit promises to change your bike into an ebike in a matter of minutes, for just $510; a crowdfunding campaign has raised 165% of the $113,471 goal with 12 days to go.

Bike ridership in Paris has doubled over the past year. And the City of Lights is just getting started reshaping the streets.

Bike riders face the same problems all over the world, as inadequate bike paths and irresponsible drivers put Turkish bicyclists at risk. Something most of us can relate to.

Sadly, it took the death of a bike-riding man for the Kuwaiti parliament to approve a plan for bike lanes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Two-time Tour de France runner-up Nairo Quintana is back on his bike just a week after he was struck by a driver on a training ride.

The Wall Street Journal’s Jason Gay says July just isn’t the same without the Tour de France. If you can get past the Journal’s paywall, that is.

CyclingNews looks back at the most memorable bike races of the past 25 years.

 

Finally…

No, seriously, who needs a seatpost anyway? Presenting the Bay Area’s first parking protected dining lanes.

And every green building needs a cycle track on the roof.

Thanks to Robert Leone for that last link.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

LA’s Gaimon sets Everesting record, Ryu flips on sustainable transportation, and BOLO alert for Downs adaptive bike

He did it.

LA-based former pro cyclist Phil Gaimon set a new world record for Everesting, riding the height of Mount Everest in less than eight hours.

Riding on LA’s steep Mountaingate Drive, Gaimon climbed a total of 29,029 feet in a time of 7:52:12, shaving 33 minutes off the previous record.

It took him over 60 laps, and nearly 100 miles of riding distance to do it.

Not to mention finishing with a little vomit in his beard. Which is a detail I’m sure none of us really needed.

Gaimon explains below he he picked the road for his record setting attempt.

Meanwhile, the LA Times reveals this isn’t the first time that road has been the scene of a hillclimb. Even if you do have to go back 35 years.

Photo by Raniery Costa Pelissari from Pexels.

………

CD4 Councilmember David Ryu must be feeling the heat as he runs for reelection in a tight race with challenger Nithya Raman.

Or else he’s had a sudden change of heart after four years of fighting road diets, bike lanes and any other kind of mobility improvements in the district.

Personally, I’d bet on the former.

But either way, it’s good to see him finally come around.

………

There’s a special place in hell for the three people who stole a custom-made adaptive bike from a 15-year old Sherman Oaks boy with Down syndrome.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

………

Mountain biker Ben Travis takes full advantage of his one outing allowed under the UK’s coronavirus lockdown, with some pretty cool stunts on the empty streets, plazas and freight yards of his Scottish hometown.

Unless you’d rather watch Belgian mountain biker Thomas Genon prove that bikes can fly.

………

Moses Sumney goes for a relaxing bike ride on his latest video.

With no hands, even.

Usher says hold my beer, not only riding through Los Feliz with no hands, while holding his not-so-little dog.

………

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

A Reddit user posted video of a jerk in a pickup rolling coal, forcing them to ride through a thick fog of black exhaust; no word on where that happened, unfortunately. Thanks to Michael for the tip.

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

Or in this case, a kid, as Alabama police tracked down bike-riding boy in connection with a series of arson fires.

And a Washington man is behind bars after allegedly using a meat cleaver to rob people while riding his bike.

………

Local

You still can’t ride a bike at the beach in LA County, but as of today, you can ride your bike on a closed-to-cars Rose Bowl Loop in Pasadena; social distancing required, with masks in parking lots and high density areas, and no group rides allowed.

Hunger Games star Josh Hutcherson is one of us, riding through Los Angeles with his longtime girlfriend.

For fans of The Bachelor, Peter Weber and Kelley Flanagan went for a casual tandem ride through the streets of LA. For the rest of us, carry on.

 

State

There won’t be any Bike to Work Day in San Diego this Thursday, after the San Diego Association of Governments, aka SANDAG, cancelled this year’s event due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Never mind that there are hardly any jobs left to bike to these days, anyway.

San Diego is taking advantage of the light traffic by repaving a three-mile section of North Harbor Drive leading to the airport, including new buffered bike lanes.

A San Raphael homeowner collared the thief who tried to steal a bike from his garage, chasing him down and holding him in a headlock until police arrived.

The Humboldt County Planning Commission approved a $1.5 million, Class 1 multi-use path paralleling State Route 255 through the tiny town of Manila, answering a decades-long call to improve safety for people on bicycles.

 

National

The New York Times says the coronavirus crisis presents a unique opportunity to reimagine our cities, creating more and better public spaces to weather this pandemic and provide greater opportunity for decades to come. Scroll slowly through the initial graphic for the full effect.

WaPo says the coronavirus isn’t the only crisis America faces right now, as speeding drivers have taken over the country’s empty roadways. Thanks to Misha Dworsky for the link.

Nice piece from Cycling Tips, as a father discovers that life rolls on even now, when his young daughter learns to ride a bike for the first time.

A new study shows distracted pedestrians aren’t the problem drivers think they are. But distracted drivers are.

Specialized has released a new transport ebike they promise is 40% lighter than traditional ebikes.

Lifehacker offers tips on how to tune your bike, while the Chicago Tribune recommends their favorite road tires.

A writer for Chicago Streetsblog says the shooting of Ahmaud Arbery illustrates the problem with calling for open streets, because they aren’t always safe for people of color, even without cars on them.

A Chicago woman pens an open letter to the hit-and-run scumbag driver who ran down her bike and left her sprawled in the street.

An Illinois town shelves plans to require helmets for bike riders, skateboarders and skaters, saying it’s not the right time because of the pandemic. It’s never the right time, because helmet laws have been repeatedly shown to depress bicycling rates, rather than improving safety.

A St. Paul MN writer maps the top gaps in the city’s bikeway network. You couldn’t do the same thing here in Los Angeles, because what passes for our nominal network is more gaps than bikeways.

Nice move from the maker of Minnesota’s Honeycomb cereal, which is donating 600 bicycles to tweens and teens in foster care.

Don’t hold your breath waiting for that new ebike from General Motors; the Detroit automaker pulled the plug after a trial European release last year.

 

International

A Mexican bikemaker is in hot water after attempting to skirt the country’s lockdown rules by hiding over 350 employees at its Mexico City factory.

The Guardian calls for more space on the roads for pedestrians and people on bicycles, saying we need room to move around safely, not a culture war.

Road.cc picks the year’s best touring bikes, starting at the equivalent of under $700.

York, England wants to become the UK’s first zero-emissions city center, with only bikes and electric vehicles allowed.

It takes a real pair of jerks to refuse to get out of the way of a little girl riding her bike on a British trail — then swear and kick her bike after she falls off.

Paris is installing 31 miles of bike lanes in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus on public transit. Meanwhile, a New York writer begs bike-friendly Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo to come be his mayor instead of the current occupant of Gotham’s city hall. Maybe she could come take over for LA’s ostensible climate mayor, instead.

French bike part maker Mavic is struggling under France’s version of bankruptcy.

Germany sees a big jump in ebike sales after the country’s bike shops are allowed to reopen.

Voice of America reports on Rome’s efforts to build more bike lanes to steer residents away from transit during the pandemic.

Italy will pay 70% of the cost of a new bicycle or e-scooter during the coronavirus crisis, up to the equivalent of $540.

The former elections commissioner of the Philippines says it’s time to promote a cycling culture in the country to improve public health during the coronavirus crisis.

 

Finally…

Evidently, your bike shorts are going to be trendy for awhile.

And it’s scary as hell when I agree with LA’s conservative shock jocks for the first time.

This must be what the Upside Down feels like.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask, already. 

Biking responsibly in the age of Covid-19, returning streets to the people, and 1,000 days of biking to (now closed) school

Last week we brought you the bad news that two of the last remaining LACBC staffers, including coalition’s longest-service employee, were let go as the organization faces serious financial problems exacerbated by the coronavirus crisis.

Today, we’re reposting a letter sent out to members by Executive Director Eli Akira Kaufman, as he addresses both the state of the organization, and advice on whether to ride your bike for the time being.

Because this matters. All of it.

As the COVID-19 crisis continues to worsen, we have been listening closely to our public health officials and our community leaders about what we can do to help flatten the curve and reduce the spread of the virus. The health of the bicycling community and our pedestrian and transit riding friends is our top priority. So we are asking you to do your part by exercising an abundance of caution in everything you do, especially when you take to the street on your bicycle for an essential ride.

What qualifies as essential? We are hearing a range of opinions on this topic, from staying in your neighborhood within a reasonable distance from your home, to avoiding more challenging and/or longer rides with increased exposure to risk of injury, to riding in smaller groups of fewer than 5 or just with members of your household to maintain recommended social (physical) distancing of at least 6 feet. Of course, each of us is different in terms of our level of comfort and fitness on a bike so it really comes down to using common sense and following the very clear guidelines that our civic leaders and public health officials have been sharing for weeks now. At the end of the day, the last thing we want is to end up needing medical attention when our first-responders and healthcare providers are working overtime to handle the pandemic which has been made all the more challenging by the fact that medical resources they need are in such short supply. Once again we believe that all of us need to do our part for the safety of our families and our communities. The more we can avoid non-essential trips, the more we can limit the spread of the disease.

I recognize that hearing this from your Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition may feel off message from our normal advocacy in support bicycle culture and improved infrastructure but that is precisely the point. The COVID-19 pandemic is a new normal that we must adjust to by responsibly advocating for biking as one of the best ways to maintain our physical, mental and community health within our new reality.

In fact we are looking beyond the current surge in COVID-19 cases to the period of months, if not longer, when the virus is still with us but under control enough for Los Angeles County to reopen. How our region reopens is an important question, but we anticipate there will be guidelines for Angelinos to maintain the practice of social (physical) distancing. We also anticipate that during this time non-essential workers and those who can use alternative modes of transportation will be asked to help lessen the crowds on our buses and subways by walking and bicycling. Which is why we anticipate an even greater need for everyone to join us in advocating for safer, healthy, more sustainable and equitable streets for a more livable Los Angeles for everyone.

One more note about our streets during this crisis: many of our fellow riders have jobs that are at essential businesses and many more are still riding as a part of their daily commutes. To support those riders, we ask that everyone take extra care when you are out and about, especially if you are driving. Due to the reduced traffic, many drivers are finding the empty streets a temptation to speed. As many of our fellow riders are still making essential trips, including people commuting and also traveling around their own neighborhoods, we ask all of you to exercise extra caution while you are outside your homes. Whether you are in the saddle or behind the wheel, please make sure to be extra aware of your surroundings, put away the distractions, and travel at safe speeds for your own safety and the safety of others. Again the last thing we need now is more people further burdening our increasingly already strained healthcare system.

Finally, I am sure some of you have heard that LACBC has had to make the difficult decision to reduce our staff for the second year in a row and permanently close down our offices in DTLA to work remotely. The current COVID-19 crisis has resulted in a significant loss of revenue for us this year, especially as spring is one of our most important seasons for our events and education programs. I want to close with a special note of gratitude to the two staffers who we had to let go last week. Colin Bogart and Kevin Claxton have been key members of the LACBC community and larger transportation justice movement for years and in Colin’s case for decades. It has been my privilege to work alongside and learn from Kevin and Colin. They will be deeply missed.

While the current situation is among the hardest we’ve had to endure at LACBC, I firmly believe that we will make it through this crisis and come back stronger than ever. We ask you for your positive thoughts as we prepare LACBC for its next chapter.

And if you are in a position to assist financially, please take a moment to send us a donation.

I’m not exactly rolling in money these days, especially after my wife was let go when her company shut down, perhaps permanently, because of LA County’s stay at home order.

Like far too many others out there.

But I’m going to find the money to renew my membership in the LACBC in the next few weeks.

It’s not going to lift them out of their current financial difficulties.

But we all need to do what can to save an organization that does so much for us.

………

One of the few positives to come out of all this whole pandemic mess is that cities across the US are taking entire streets away from cars and giving them to people to get outside and exercise.

Denver shut down four streets to make more room for pedestrians and people on bicycles; more streets may follow soon to allow people to get out while practicing social distancing.

St. Paul, Minnesota, shut down three streets, but only through this Friday, while City Lab maps how cities are reclaiming street space for people.

On the other hand, Los Angeles, which has closed virtually all popular parks and trails, still insists on reserving every inch of asphalt reserved for the cars and drivers that often aren’t there right now.

Rather than giving a little of it back to the people to get outside for awhile.

Thanks to Robert Leone for the links.

………

We can all use a smile these days.

Bicycling provides a good one, as they check in with eleven-year old Bodhi Linde, who’s been riding his bike to school every day since kindergarten.

But like schools everywhere, his Rapid City, South Dakota shut down due to the Covid-19 outbreak — just as he was approaching his 1,000th straight day.

So he kept riding the 2.1 miles to school every day anyway. Then turned around and rode back home to take his classes online.

And yes, he hit the mark.

………

Heartless bike thieves continue to plague medical workers in the UK, despite the current coronavirus crisis. Or maybe because of it.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a British paramedic’s bicycle as she was working a 12-hour shift.

A Northern Irish pharmacist saw an outpouring of support after her bike was stolen from her car as she worked, before it was replaced by a local bike shop.

Pro cyclist Luke Rowe came to the rescue after someone stole a bike from a Welsh intensive care medic while he was treating patients; Rowe was having a new bike delivered today.

Speaking of Britain’s National Health Service, this tweet pretty much puts things in perspective.

………

On a related subject, today’s common theme is a return of the sort of kindhearted people we usually only see around the holidays.

A pair of Fontana cops dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a seven-year old boy after someone cut the lock to steal his.

A seven-year old Illinois girl ended up with two bicycles, after a Good Samaritan replaced her stolen bike, just hours before police recovered it.

Kindhearted strangers pitched in to buy a new bike for a 12-year old British Columbia boy after the one he got for his birthday was stolen.

After a Malaysian man chased down an aid van from a non-government organization on his bicycle to beg for food for his family when the factory he worked for was shut down because of Covid-19, not only did they respond the next day, but a number of generous people reached out to help.

………

Police immediately seized the license of an 81-year old woman who nearly ran people down while speeding along a Rhode Island bike path.

Don’t get me started on the need for elderly drivers to give up their keys when they can’t drive safely anymore.

Instead of driving them everywhere, hop in the passenger seat and let your older relatives drive. And see if they’re still the safe drivers you remember.

If they ever were, that is.

………

Now that the hockey season is on hiatus, NHL players have time for the little things.

Like spending time with their kids. And teaching ’em to ride bikes.

https://twitter.com/Capitals/status/1246814061721006083?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1246814061721006083&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nbcsports.com%2Fwashington%2Fcapitals%2Fwatch-tj-oshie-teach-his-daughter-lyla-how-ride-bike

………

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

Security has been tightened at a San Anselmo CA school after a group of teens on mountain bikes harassed a security guard, allegedly coughing in his face while making jokes about the pandemic.

A Columbian bike rider was shot to death after opening fire on two cops who stopped him for violating the country’s coronavirus curfew; one of the officers was wounded in the shoulder.

British police are looking for a trio of bike-riding teenagers who attacked a radiographer with the National Health Service in an apparent attempt to steal his headphones; one will need a new bike seat after using it as a weapon during the attack.

………

Local

Lyft scooters are now free for health and transit workers for the remainder of the month, here in Los Angeles and in cities around the US; the company is also bolstering their supply of e-scooters around hospitals.

The Wall Street Journal drops their paywall for a photo essay of mask-wearing Angelenos, including Midnight Wilder from Manny’s Bike Shop in Venice.

The coronavirus has given Angelenos a glimpse of what’s possible with fewer cars, as the city enjoys its cleanest air in four decades.

The rector of All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Beverly Hills is one of us. And barely survived coronavirus, anyway.

Andy Garcia is one of us, too, as he takes a casual ride on his cruiser bike through the streets of LA.

Isla Fisher takes a “spirited” bike ride with husband Sacha Baron Cohen through Los Angeles.

Simon Cowell went for an ebike ride with his family through the ‘Bu.

 

State

Millennials say don’t blame them for jerks on San Jose trails.

The CHP has released a very blurry photo of the truck driven by the suspect who allegedly killed a Patterson bike rider in a hit-and-run last week.

The annual America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride scheduled for June has been pushed back, and will be combined with September’s annual Tour de Tahoe.

 

National

An industrial engineering writer says light yourself up and wear reflective clothing, because it’s better to be uncomfortably conspicuous than be a fatality statistic.

Essential workers around the US are getting to work by bike. Meanwhile, Bicycling talks with five bicyclists on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis.

Shades of Burma Shave, as Kansas residents post jokes along a local bike path.

Wisconsin bike riders will have to keep their clothes on for another year, as Madison’s annual World Naked Bike Ride has been cancelled due to Covid-19.

The coronavirus bike boom seems to be having a different effect in different places; while bike shops in some areas can’t keep up with the demand, Chicago shops are seeing a big drop in business.

The Chicago Tribune recommends their top picks for the best ebike conversion kits.

A writer for the New York Times says go outside, but maintain social distancing on the sidewalk. And don’t ride your bike there.

A New York writer says things are worse than you think for the city’s food delivery riders, while bike-riding volunteers are delivering desperately needed  parts for face masks and ventilators. A Medium piece examines how you can support bicycle delivery workers right now. Here’s a tip: Tip.

Writing for the Daily News, a New York college professor says the problem isn’t the cars, it’s the coronavirus; meanwhile, an economic publication calls the pandemic a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to transform the way we travel.

The celebrity bike craze jumps to the East Coast, as CNN’s Anderson Cooper rides through New York sans helmet and face mask while balancing an iced coffee on his handlebars.

Tragic news from Tampa Florida, where a man on a bike and a motorcycle rider were both killed in a collision as the bicycle rider was attempting to cross street a major in a crosswalk.

 

International

Road.cc considers what a fixie is good for, and whether you should get one. Unless maybe you’d prefer riding with a stoker in back.

Cyclist examines the best masks to protect urban bike riders from pollution. And hopefully, coronavirus.

Bike Radar recommends ten cheap hybrid bikes that won’t break the bank.

Quebec is just the latest province or state to conclude that bike shops provide an essential service; New York State fell in line after initially leaving bike shops off the approved list.

London’s Daily Mail visits the world’s largest bicycle garage in the Netherlands, which offers room for 12,500 bikes.

Megan Lynch forwards a great Spanish language piece about Britain’s Clarion Cycling Club, which sent members down to Spain to fight a losing battle against the fascists in the Spanish civil war. If, like me, you don’t read Spanish, just copy the text and dump the whole thing in Google Translate.

A wheelchair-bound Polish man rode his hand-bike over 371 mile across Iceland to raise money for an orphanage. In winter.

An Indian bicycle delivery rider is covering the length and breadth of Delhi delivering food to people who can’t get out — mostly doctors busy battling Covid-19.

Seriously? After a five-year old Taiwanese kid crashed his bike into a parked Tesla, police gave him a breathalyzer test.

The worldwide lockdowns are putting the squeeze on Taiwan’s bikemakers.

New Zealanders are debating whether bike riders are abiding by the country’s lockdown rules, which limits bicyclists to local rides.

 

Competitive Cycling

The Tour of Utah pulls the plug.

VeloNews talks with former women’s pro cyclist Allison Tetrick, now the queen of the Dirty Kanza gravel race, which will now be held in September.

Cycling gazes into its crystal ball to predict the future of pro cycling, while French cyclists request permission to train outside during the country’s lockdown.

Now you can ride just like Lance in his prime; doping optional.

Who says there’s no bike racing this year? Pro cyclists took part in the cancelled Tour of Flanders as the race went virtual; Belgian Greg Van Avermaet won in a virtual breakaway.

The annual Race Across America, aka RAAM, has been cancelled for this year in favor of a virtual race across the country.

One advantage of virtual cycling — the crashes don’t hurt as much. On the other hand, you can’t win if your bike is unplugged.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be made from used plastic bottle caps. Create a preschool indoor trainer with training wheels and a pair of shoes.

And even the Easter Bunny is practicing social distancing on his bike.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy.

 

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