Tag Archive for Bike to Work Day

Morning Links: Woman bike rider critically injured in Long Beach, and Pure Cycles rescues Bike to Work bike theft victim

A woman was critically injured riding her bike in the Belmont Shores neighborhood of Long Beach early yesterday morning, after she allegedly went through a red light and was struck by a driver.

As always, the question is whether there were any independent witnesses who actually saw who had the green light.

Or if Long Beach police relied strictly on the driver’s account, since the victim would have been unable to share her side of the story.

Either way, it’s a reminder to always stop for red lights and observe the right-of-way.

Because the consequences can be life changing. Or ending.

Thanks to John McBrearty for the heads-up.

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At least one rider made it out for yesterday’s soggy Bike to Work Day.

And on a very cool Pedersen bike, no less.

And hats off to Michael Fishman and Pure Cycles for saving the day when the unthinkable, but all too common, happened to a rider in DTLA.

Meanwhile, LADOT hosted a pair of pop-up traffic safety installations, despite the wet Bike to Work Day weather.

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Lots of news coverage from around the US for Wednesday’s Ride of Silence to honor injured and fallen bike riders.

Including right here in Pasadena, though the LA ride seems to merit nary a whisper.

Like Rides of Silence in Philadelphia, and a small Nebraska town. Lubbock and Houston, Texas. Ridgeland, Mississippi. Lansing, Michigan, where billboards also called out the dangers of distracted driving.

Not to mention San Francisco, where riders confronted winds and rain to go with the usual tears.

Meanwhile, Denver responded to the 88 people killed on the city’s streets last year by putting up signs marking the site of each needless death; the city’s mayor confessed to an inadequate response to the deadly streets.

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Spectrum New 1 catches up with Keith Jackson, the bike rider who was nearly killed when he was run down riding on La Tuna Canyon last year.

Jackson has had to relearn how to walk, eat and talk after spending two months in a coma.

And as happens all too often, the driver who hit him sped off and hasn’t been seen since.

But at least his crash resulted in narrowing the wide traffic lanes on La Tuna and installation of a buffered bike lane. One of the rare instances of city officials responding to a near-tragedy by actually fixing the street where it happened.

Jackson will be at Sunday’s Finish the Ride in Griffith Park to spread the need for safer streets if you want to wish him well in his recovery; registration ends at 6 pm tomorrow.

And give him my best wishes while you’re at it.

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It’s not just drivers who give in to road rage.

Police in a Denver suburb are looking for a bike rider who yelled at a woman for blocking a bike lane, after she pulled her car over because her mother, who was in the passenger seat, wasn’t feeling well.

When the driver caught up to him at a red light, he allegedly kicked and punched the car, then reached in to grab her mother, before spitting on both women and riding away.

Let’s hope the woman he was riding with saw all that, and took it as fair warning before he turns that violent temper her way some day.

Although it does make you wonder what the driver said when she caught up to him.

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Local

Today is the last day to submit comments on the shamefully inadequate Beverly Hills Complete Streets plan.

Popular offroad route Sullivan Canyon will close for maintenance for six weeks starting June 3rd. Thanks to Steve Messer for the tip.

Curbed’s Alissa Walker says LA’s future is on foot, even though the city is still designing the streets for cars.

Metro is considering three alternatives for extending the LA River Bike Path.

WeHoVille looks forward to the August CicLAvia connecting Hollywood and West Hollywood. And so an I, since I should finally be back on my bike by then.

KNBC-4 says keep your eyes peeled for Gabe the Sasquatch at Sunday’s Mission to Mission edition of 626 Golden Streets.

The fight over moving a row of palm trees to make room for a Complete Street makeover of Long Beach’s Marina Drive goes on, despite a Coastal Commission ruling giving the okay for the move.

Long Beach will celebrate Bike Month with a three-mile Pedal & Picnic ride for all ages on Saturday.

 

State

OCTA has rescheduled the Orange County Bike Rally for next Thursday, following yesterday’s rainout.

Carlsbad pulled the plug on its planned bikeshare system, even though it would have been operated with no risk to the city.

A 63-year old Ramona man took a cross-country bike tour to ride himself into better health, and raise funds for a local museum; so far he’s raised just $640 of the $5,000 goal.

A bighearted high school freshman from Santa Ynez organized her second annual fundraising bike ride to provide bicycles and tools to girls in rural Cambodia, to help ensure they can get to school to receive an education.

A Fresno driver relies on the built-in cameras in his Tesla to prove a hit-and-run bike rider really did run into him, and not the other way around.

Sad news from Oakland, where an 83-year old man was killed attempting to ride his bike across a busy state highway.

Police arrest 30 homeless people in a warrant sweep along a Sacramento bike path.

 

National

Bike Snob says ignoring bike riders won’t make us go away.

Now both Uber and Lyft are encouraging their drivers and passenger to look for bicyclists to avoid doorings.

Outside offers advice on how to buy a mountain bike. And says softails are back, except now they’re on high-end roadies and gravel bikes.

That’s more like it. El Paso, Texas authorities say they know they screwed up by striping a bike lane that’s half gutter and so narrow the bike lane symbol won’t even fit in it. And are considering removing a traffic lane to fix it.

A Minneapolis newspaper offers a belated obituary of a longtime local bike advocate, who was found dead in his home last month due to complications from a lifelong struggle with alcohol.

Chicago bike riders are losing access to a popular shared use pathway along the riverfront after reconstruction partially blocked it, and private security guards have begun illegally enforcing a non-existent ban on bikes.

Police in Fort Wayne, Indiana are looking for a bike-riding man who shot an employee of a property management company before riding away in a full-face helmet, presumably to hide his identity.

Vermont ebike buyers can get a $200 rebate from their utility company. Which they’ll probably need once Trump’s tariff’s kick in.

A Massachusetts woman decides to take advantage of a beautiful spring day to ride her bike to the bank, and ends up at a dumpster. And then a dumpster fire of a car-choked intersection.

New York’s Vision Zero is going the wrong way where bikes are concerned, as the ten people killed riding bicycles so far this year already equal the total for all of 2018.

Maybe city leaders will listen to them now. Seventy DC bike riders fanned out across the city to count drivers blocking bike lanes, logging nearly 500 violations by early afternoon.

A DC writer offers advices on how to bike to work while spending as little as possible on it. People for Bikes offers their tips, as well.

A four-man troupe of bike-riding British Shakespearean actors made their US debut in Virginia this week; the performers have ridden their bikes between performances in 12 countries.

This is why people continue to die on our streets. A drunk driver in South Carolina walked with a lousy 24 hours of community service after she was caught on video crashing into a pedicab, then telling police she had no idea she’d hit anything; fortunately, the pedicab driver didn’t appear to have been injured.

The former chief accountant for the SEC won a whopping $41 million judgement against his Florida homeowners association after crashing his bike into a stanchion they erected on a bike trail.

 

International

Here’s something to look forward to. A writer for Forbes says distracted driving will increase exponentially on the path to self-driving cars.

Canadian Cycling Magazine offers eight tips to bike commute like a pro.

An Ottawa, Canada traffic safety expert calls a painted bike lane “complete lunacy,” saying bicyclists will never be safe on the street as long as they have to share the same flat surface with cars and trucks.

A British MP says he’s going to keep claiming mileage expenses for riding his bicycle on official business, complaints be damned.

Video from an English bus shows the exact moment the driver swerved directly into a bicyclist, knocking the man off his bike; fortunately, he wasn’t seriously injured.

An Iranian prosecutor has decided that it’s sinful for women to ride bicycles and prohibited by Islamic law; police have been told to give women bicyclists a polite reprimand, then impound their bikes if they don’t have ID on them. Or they can use the equivalent of a bike burka so no one can see what they’re riding. No, seriously.

 

Competitive Cycling

If you still haven’t seen Wednesday’s stage of the Amgen Tour of California, what the hell are you waiting for, already?

But you might want to skip this next section.

American Tejay van Garderen lost his lead in the AToC, and then he didn’t, after race officials decided a massive crash near the end of the race unfairly delayed him and other riders. A writer for VeloNews says the jury made the wrong call.

Meanwhile, NBC catches you up with Thursday’s men’s and women’s races.

Bicycling wants to know who’s the 21-year old American kicking ass in the Tour of California.

A pair of women are fighting for greater equality in the race, instead of the lousy three stages — and no live TV time — women cyclists are now offered.

There was a lead change in the Giro, while much of the peloton went down in a massive crash on wet roads.

Wall Street Journal columnist Jason Gay calls Ben King the humble king of American cycling. Unfortunately, the article is hidden behind the Journal’s paywall, so you may not get past the first few paragraphs.

Texas pro Lawson Craddock discusses his road back after riding the entire Tour de France with a broken collarbone last year, and refusing to give up despite finishing dead last as a result.

And last but not least, bike racing returns to LA — or Carson, anyway — with the newly revived La Grange Grand Prix on June 2nd.

 

Finally…

Six times around the world, and his bike its stolen in Californiaon the seventh. We may have to worry about LA drivers crashing into us, but at least we don’t have to worry about crashing into sheep.

And that’s one way to prevent a close pass.

 

Morning Links: Happy Bike to Work Day, Pasadena bike rider injured in hit-and-run, and close call on Orange Line Bike Path

Happy soggy Bike to Work Day!

Hopefully the weather will hold off, so you’ll be able to get out and ride your Bike to Work commute today.

And hopefully the LACBC and LADOT will both keep their promised morning pit stops, despite the forecast.

Especially since both promise fresh donuts and coffee instead of the usual Bike to Work Day energy bar fare.

https://twitter.com/zrch4light/status/1128787896897458176

If no one shows up on Bike to Work Day, they can feel free to send any leftover donuts my way, since it looks like at least another month before I can ride my bike anywhere besides my living room.

Meanwhile, another 74 pit stops are promised throughout the LA area, though no telling whether they will still be there if it rains.

If your commute is too wet, you can hop a bus or train; most local transit systems are offering free rides to anyone accompanied by a bike or helmet today, including Metro and Metrolink. And if the rain lets up, the unimaginatively named Metro Bike bikeshare will be free, as well.

On the other hand, Santa Monica has wisely moved their Bike to Work pit stops at City Hall and the Bike Center to tomorrow, when the forecast calls for drier weather.

Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels.com.

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A Pasadena man is recovering from critical injuries after he was run down by a hit-and-run driver while riding his bike across Orange Grove Blvd.

Police tracked the driver to a nearby apartment, where he was taken into custody on suspicion of being drunk and stoned behind the wheel.

And if the street sounds familiar, it’s the same one where Rose City NIMBYs were driven to a frenzy by a group affiliated with traffic safety deniers Keep LA Moving to demand that the city keep the street dangerous.

Clearly, they succeeded.

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Brayden Dakota captured bike cam video of a close call on a blind intersection near the Canoga Station on the Orange Line Bike Path.

Unfortunately, it’s not the first time I’ve seen video of a similar near-collision at that location. Hopefully someone will finally do something to fix the problem, so it will be the last.

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A new study from a German insurance company ranks Vancouver, British Columbia, as North America’s 2nd best city for bicycling.

The Canadian city was ranked 37th out of the world’s 90 top cities, compared to Montreal at 18th.

San Francisco was the best bike city in the US at 39th, followed by Portland and Seattle.

Not surprisingly, Utrecht in the Netherlands ranked first, followed by Munster, Germany, and Antwerp, Belgium.

Despite its vaunted cycle superhighways, London failed to crack the top 50.

Very surprising, though, was Los Angeles actually making the list at 56th, primarily because we ranked first for the world’s best bicycling weather, though you couldn’t prove it today.

Although we did make another much shorter list awhile back.

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Good long read from Curbed on reclaiming the feminist legacy of bicycling.

Recovering the feminist legacy of cycling requires overcoming the practical obstacles that keep women off bikes, and making sure women’s voices are heard in city planning. But perhaps most importantly, it will mean reclaiming the joy, pleasure, and sense of possibility that those early cyclists felt. Women deserve to reconnect with the idea that by riding our bikes we are creating a better future, for ourselves and for our cities.

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Evidently, it’s open season on bike riders.

A Wisconsin teenager was shot in the head as he was riding a bike, in an apparently random, apparently unintentional shooting.

And someone shot an Indianapolis man twice in the leg as he was on an early morning bike ride.

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More proof that drivers are the same everywhere.

A British Columbia driver calmly cruises down a bike lane, passing traffic on the right, before eventually turning onto a freeway onramp.

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Watch a hydraulic press destroy an odd assortment of helmets in a fun, but totally meaningless, demonstration.

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Local

KCRW wants to know if Los Angeles can clean its dirty air. Unless the city provides viable safe alternatives to driving, no.

Streetsblog looks at Tuesday’s Blessing of the Bicycles at Good Samaritan Hospital in DTLA; Joni Yung offers photos from the event.

KABC-7 says the bike club at Los Angeles Leadership Academy is helping to keep kids motivated and headed in the right direction.

LADOT says plans are moving forward for safety improvements on Winnetka, including nearly a mile of bike lanes, spurred at least in part by the death of a 72-year old bike rider last September. I’m the first to criticize the city council when it’s called for, so let me thank CD3 Councilmember Bob Blumenfield for responding to this tragedy and helping push this project through.

The Pasadena Star-News previews Sunday’s 626 Golden Streets open streets event, which will see streets closed to motor vehicles through South Pasadena, Alhambra and San Gabriel, predicting a turnout of 20,000 people. With more rain forecast for Sunday, they may be right; turnout on a sunny day could be several times that.

The Downtown Pasadena Neighborhood Association will hold a pot luck meeting Thursday evening; among the items to be discussed are proposed enhancements to Cordova Street, including suggestions for a bike lane extending to Arroyo Parkway.

An internationally renowned Palos Verdes artist is staging his first show since he was nearly killed riding his bike on PCH in Malibu after finishing an organized century ride.

Long Beach votes to make e-scooters a permanent addition to the city, while tripling the number allowed.

 

State

Calbike says a pair of bike-friendly bills are making their way through the legislature, including tax vouchers for ebikes, which is scheduled for a vote in the Senate today.

A writer in an Ocean Beach paper says bicycling is great, but he’d rather have parking and his right turn on red back, thank you.

The 13th Annual San Diego Century ride rolls this Saturday, and will be passing through Ramona.

A 10-year old Cambria girl with cerebral palsy can ride a bike for the first time, after a nonprofit and a Texas bikemaker help provide her with an adaptive ebike.

Lyft promises to bring their Jump dockless ebikes back to the Bay Area by June, a full three months before they’ll return to the Big Apple.

Los Angeles should take a clue from Oakland, and add adaptive bikes for people with disabilities to the Metro Bike bikeshare.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a paralyzed Richmond man’s mountain bike handcycle, a crowdfunding page to help pay for a replacement has raised $3,000 of the $10,000 goal.

No surprise here. A Sacramento teenager is suing the police for assault and excessive force, among other allegations, after officers intentionally ran him down on the sidewalk as he tried to flee a traffic stop — for not having a light on his bike.

 

National

A new study shows that 37 million Americans think they put themselves in danger from distracted listening while wearing headphones over the past year.

Uber tells its passengers to stop dooring bike riders already.

Let’s face it. What you really need is a good ale trail.

Forget the standard argument over bike lanes versus parking; near Salt Lake City, it’s bikes versus birds.

Denver is planning to add 17 miles of “high comfort” bike lanes this year, a down payment on the 125 miles planned for the next five years.

In yet another example of keeping dangerous drivers on the road until it’s too late, a Chicago-area driver fled the scene after running down a 6-year old girl on her bike, despite having a revoked license; the schmuck abandoned his truck — and his dog — then turned himself in the next day, most likely giving himself plenty of time to sober up.

A Minnesota letter writer says the law should be changed so kids can ride salmon, because her friend hit some bicycling teens 40 years ago.

No, 25News in Fenton MI, you don’t have to be an “avid” bicyclist to celebrate Bike Month.

A Boston bike shop manager and triathlete offers safety tips for riding your bike. And gets them right for a change.

A Syracuse NY public radio station discusses the meaning of Complete Streets.

A Pennsylvania TV station warns about breaking the law by allowing the bike rack on your car to block your license plate. That’s illegal here in California, as well, though it seems to be seldom enforced.

Baltimore’s drunken, killer hit-and-run ex-bishop is officially out of prison after serving just half of her seven year sentence for fatally running down a man riding a bike. Let’s hope she got sober while she was behind bars. And that a condition of her parole is no more driving. Period.

A Baltimore newspaper explains why car ownership continues to climb in the US, despite alternatives.

They get it. A North Carolina TV station says drivers need to do their part to improve safety by not parking in bike lanes and other multi-use lanes.

 

International

An Ottawa, Canada man is back in the saddle for the first time in a decade after he was critically injured in a bicycling collision, as he trains for a 2K ride on a walking bike — basically a three-wheeled adult balance bike.

Road.cc offers advice for British bike riders who’ve been in a crash, most of which applies on this side of the Atlantic, as well. We should all be jealous of a country where bicyclists are entitled to free legal advice.

The Department of DIY struck in the UK, where someone anonymously posted warning signs after a bike-riding girl was hit by a bus.

An English man rode his custom bike 9,500 miles across the US. And naturally had it stolen once he made it to California.

Um, okay. A Zambian witch-doctor was sentenced to 18 year hard labor for indecent assault against five elderly people that he blamed for using witchcraft to make a boy fall off his bike and die; he took them to a graveyard and made them undress and lie on a grave, then rolled on them to exorcize their powers.

Israeli authorities are charging an ebike rider for the death of a pedestrian after he went through a crowded crosswalk at 15 mph.

 

Competitive Cycling

Wednesday’s Giro offered a preview of what the Amgen Tour of California riders may have to look forward to today.

French cyclist Remi Cavagna rode an “audacious” solo breakaway to victory in the Amgen Tour of California in Tuesday’s third stage. Although he could stand a few lessons on how to descend.

Evidently, Mark Cavendish is no fan of the AToC, comparing Monday’s second stage to sitting on an indoor trainer for seven hours.

Ventura sisters and pro cyclists Kendall and Alexis Ryan discuss women’s parity in cycling in advance of Thursday’s first stage of the truncated women’s Tour of California.

A sports website predicts misery and pain for the women’s teams in the Tour’s three stages, especially on Mt. Baldy and the final stage from Santa Clarita to Pasadena.

VeloNews calls the women’s race a dynamic route with a competitive lineup.

 

Finally…

Don’t just watch Stranger Things, ride it. Seriously, if you’re a known gang member carrying a gun and heroin on your bike, put a damn light on it — the bike, not the gun. Or the heroin.

And why stop for lunch, when you can just have it delivered while you’re stuck in traffic?

 

Morning Links: It’s Bike Week in SoCal, but anti-Bike Week in Riverside, and OC columnist calls out deadly drivers

Today’s common theme?

Bike Week, of course.

Metro is celebrating with a 30 day Metro Bike Pass for just one dollar this month.

LA Downtown News looks forward to tomorrow’s multi-denominational Blessing of the Bicycles at Good Samaritan Hospital. Unfortunately, you won’t see me there this year as I continue to rehab my knee, even though the Blessing of the Bicycles is my favorite Bike Week event.

The annual Ride of Silence will take place on Wednesday, and for the first time, will travel from the Vermont and Wilshire Metro Station to Los Angeles City Hall. Maybe then our city leaders will get the message.

This is what Zachary Rynew, aka CiclaValley, had to say about it.

This Wednesday evening, there are a number of events across the Southland for the Ride of Silence and if you’re part of this community, I hope you take part.

Commemorating those that have been lost or injured riding in the roadway isn’t an experience we wish for, but it does provide a moment of inspiration. We all share these streets and each Ride of Silence has brought out all factions of our community. While we are blessed to be a part of this group, there’s an obligation to honor those no longer with us. I know from the number of ghost bikes I’ve placed, providing support to even complete strangers gives comfort to us all.

There will be hundreds of rides taking place across the globe, but if you’re in the Los Angeles area, please take the time Wednesday evening to take place in one of the rides at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Thousand Oaks, or the one I’m hosting from the Vermont / Wilshire Station to City Hall.
You can also find a number of other rides across California or the nation by going here. We ride for each other because these roads connect us not just point to point, but person to person.

Thursday is Bike to Work Day, which is the Bike Week equivalent of trick or treating for bike commuters. You’ll find pit stops with treats and other assorted goodies all over LA County; though not all are on the map. Metro will also offer free rides for anyone with a bike or helmet.

The LACBC will have their own Bike to Work Day pit stop on Spring Street in DTLA.

Pasadena and CICLE will bring you a full week of Rose City Bike Week events, ranging from a Taste of Pasadena and Women’s Bike Night, to a Bike from Work Happy Hour and a Bike-In Movie.

Santa Clarita will mark Bike Week with Bike to Work Day and the final stage of this year’s Amgen Tour of California.

Ride with Santa Monica City Manager Rick Cole on Saturday to explore the city’s 19 miles of new green bike lanes. Santa Monica Spoke has more Bike Month and Bike Week activities, including a Bike From Work Handlebar Happy Hour.

LA County Bike Week wraps up with the 626 Golden Streets: Mission to Mission ride on Sunday; the Alhambra Source tells you everything you need to know.

OCTA, aka the Orange County Transportation Authority, is hosting a ride on Thursday, plus a chance to win a Trek 2 bicycle or Fitbit Charge 2 if you pledge to ride to work at least one day this month.

San Diego will celebrate Bike to Work Day on Thursday, as well.

Ventura County celebrates Bike Week with a full week of biking to work, instead of a single day, including “entertainment, opportunities and prizes.”

Photo by Ali Arapoğlu from Pexels.

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On the other hand, hats off to the Riverside Police Department for celebrating National Bike Month and attempting to improve bike safety by — wait for it — cracking down on the vulnerable people on two wheels, and giving the ones in the big, dangerous machines a pass.

If the goal is to get more people on their bikes, that’s the wrong way to go about it.

Let alone improve safety.

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Powerful piece by Orange County Register columnist David Whiting, who calls out distracted and aggressive drivers for far too many OC bicycling deaths.

He also quotes longtime Orange County bike advocate Bill Sellin extensively.

Except things are even worse than Whiting says. With the death of a man in Santa Ana last week, there have now been four people killed while riding bikes in OC this year, not the three he cites in the article.

Thanks to John McBreaty for the heads-up. 

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New Orange County Bicycle Coalition board member Mike Wilkinson wonders why downhill riders should have all the fun.

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Taylor Nichols says if you see this guy riding around the Hollywood Hills, say hi and maybe pass him a few bucks.

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

An Aussie driver is accused of running down a man on a bike, intentionally backing over him, and fleeing the scene. Then gets released on a ridiculously low $10,000 bond, and claims she thought she just ran over a piece of metal. Sure. A piece of metal with wheels and a human being attached.

Life is cheap in New Zealand, where a violent road raging driver got ten months home vacation, uh, detention and community service for intentionally swerving at a man riding his bike, forcing him up on the sidewalk, then making a U-turn to come back and slam into him. Then when the victim came to in the street with a severely broken leg, the driver stood over him and said “Serves you right.”

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Local

Police in South Pasadena are warning about an increase in bicycle thefts.

A new survey shows most Santa Monica bikeshare and e-scooter users are young, affluent and live outside the city. And over half are using them to replace motor vehicle trips.

 

State

Speaking of OCTA, they want your input on how to improve the Beach Boulevard La Habra and Huntington Beach; options include enhanced sidewalks and bicycle paths.

The Orange County Sheriffs Department will conduct a pair of safety enforcement operations today, with a bicycle and pedestrian enforcement in San Clemente, and cracking down on motorcycle safety violations in Stanton. Standard protocols apply; ride to the letter of the law until you leave the city limits. Thanks to Rock Kendall for the tip.

San Diego County has broken ground on what will be the county’s first bike park, scheduled to open later this year.

Los Angeles is known for car chases; in San Diego, they flee on bikes.

Too scary. Someone apparently took a few shots at Oxnard bike rider from a passing car for no apparent reason.

People for Bikes says Santa Barbara is the best bike city in California.

San Francisco’s Timbuk2 is keeping up with the times by shifting its emphasis from messenger bags to backpacks and products designed for women.

Sad news from Stockton, where a hit-and-run driver left a man who was either riding or walking his bike to die alone in the street.

 

National

Open your wallet wide. Because bicyclists will get to pay for Trump’s trade war with China. Especially people in the market for entry level and kids bikes.

Good piece from Curbed’s Alissa Walker, saying bike lanes need barriers instead of just paint, because cities shouldn’t let people on bicycles get run over.

City Lab explores what it will take to finish America’s first coast-to-coast bike trail.

A new app from a pair of Oregon professors promises to give you a green light 80% of the time.

An Idaho letter writer calls for the law to be changed to allow bicyclists to ride facing traffic, on the assumption it will improve safetyHint: It won’t. Riding salmon dramatically increases your risk of a serious crash. 

Nice work. A pair of bicycling Colorado grandmas are hanging it up after riding 20,000 miles on multiple trips across the US, raising nearly three-quarter of a million dollars to fight Huntington’s Disease.

Kindhearted North Dakota firefighters buy a new bike for a boy whose bike was stolen, after seeing a Facebook post about the theft.

A retired Kansas trauma surgeon is planning to ride 1,000 miles from Wichita to Winnipeg, Canada to honor his daughter and raise funds to fight eating disorders, following her death from anorexia and depression.

Not even bike cops are safe from hit-and-run drivers, as a Dallas police officer learned the hard way; fortunately, he was not seriously injured.

Minneapolis police busted a bike rider for smashing the windows on a school bus, though they’re not sure if it’s the same person who vandalized two previous school buses for parking in a bike lane.

Now that’s more like it. A Michigan century ride is providing bicyclists with food stops offering cherry pie along the way, and a hot buffet, live music and cocktails at the end.

Now that’s more like it too. An Indiana bike park has opened an adaptive use trail for kids and adults with disabilities.

Great video of kids from a Massachusetts Boys and Girls Club being surprised with 25 new bicycles.

A biking Buffalo bishop plans to ride 3,000 miles through 600 cities on four continents to raise funds for homeless people and the less fortunate.

A Brooklyn bike path is not the place for a swastika; nowhere else is, either.

A New York letter writer tells the red light-running bicyclist who cursed him out for almost hitting him, “If you ever wonder why arrogant cyclists are so reviled by law-abiding motorists like myself” just look in the mirror. Something tells me there’s another side to this, but still.

You gotta respect a successful Hollywood actor who rides the streets of New York with a wooden crate instead of a basket. And takes his rescue dog with him.

The son of a Pennsylvania police officer who was killed in the line of duty will join in on the 250-mile national police memorial ride to Washington DC to honor fallen officers.

He gets it. A Virginia coffee shop owner has started a petition calling for safer streets for people on bicycles, based on personal experience.

They get it too. A South Carolina newspaper says safety education and increased enforcement won’t reverse the longstanding neglect that kills too many bike riders and pedestrians. And the only way to get truly safe roads is to build them that way.

A Tampa, Florida TV station says putting your garbage can out in the bike lane is a serious problem.

 

International

No more dirty bikes. Now you can buy your own pressure washer made just for washing bicycles for the equivalent of less than $120.

The makers of the new Xtracycle ebike promise it never become obsolete, changing along with the rider through all stages of life.

Riding across Canada with two good legs is hard. Riding 4,500 miles across the country on a handcycle after losing the use of his legs is another thing entirely.

Canadian Cycling Magazine offers tips for beginning riders.

A Toronto newspaper says six years and $2.59 million dollars is a lot for bike parking, even if it does come with showers; they’ve got a point, the project was originally supposed to be done two years ago for less than half of that.

No bias here. A writer for a driving website accuses Montreal’s leaders of having an anti-car agenda, after the city responded to the death of a bike rider by closing a roadway through a park that drivers had been using as a freeway to avoid traffic, and favoring high-speed “racing bike scofflaws.” Just like LA’s Playa del Rey, the action was reversed after angry drivers got out their torches and pitchforks.

A New Brunswick, Canada teenager has developed a bike light designed to show drivers the equivalent of a three-foot passing distance.

British blogger Velo City Girl is working to make bicycling more socially inclusive, while dumping the Lycra.

The New York Times considers the Welsh program allowing doctors to prescribe bikeshare to their patients, saying “take two bike rides and call me in the morning.”

If you build it, they will obey the law. A new study shows that just 5% of Dutch bike riders break the law, compared to 66% of drivers; that rose to 14% of bicyclists when there was no bike infrastructure present.

Just in time for Bike Week, an Aussie columnist describes his journey from timid beginning bike commuter to peak MAMIL.

 

Competitive Cycling

As usual, we’re going to avoid spoilers for this year’s Amgen Tour of California, as well as the Giro d’Italia, for anyone who hasn’t had a chance to catch up on the most recent stages. Which is why we’ll just say Sunday’s first stage of the AToC offered a very dramatic sprint to the finish with a surprising competitor.

The Tour of California continues to grow in international stature, with lots of stars, but no clear favorite. Although it’s questionable what this headline from the LA Times preview even means.

CiclaValley offers his own take on the action about to unfold this week.

VeloNews says the penultimate Mount Baldy queen stage could overshadowed by four potential breakaway stages.

The Santa Clarita Signal looks forward to Saturday’s final stage of the AToC.

And in non-ATOC news, apparently bike racing is the perfect cure for the stress of working with dolphins.

 

Finally…

Now you can own your very own Bird scooter for the low, low price of just $1,299; thanks to David Drexler for the link. When your bike becomes a moveable kinetic sculpture. Real FBI agents hardly ever ride bikes on the job, and they seldom dump live catfish on your lawn.

And apparently, my name has an entirely different meaning north of the border.

Somehow, I prefer the second meaning.

Thanks to Chris Klibowitz for finding that one.

I think.

Morning Links: Happy Bike to Work Day, #CrashCityHall tomorrow, and Rapha says sit on it

Happy Bike to Work Day.

You can ride Metro, Metrolink and many other transit systems free today with your bike, or in some cases, just a helmet.

And don’t forget about the LACBC’s Handlebar Happy Hour at Gulp Sushi Alehouse in DTLA, sponsored by BikinginLA title sponsors Pocrass and De Los Reyes.

………

We’re just one day away from #CrashCityHall.

I hope you can join me, and other walkers and bike riders from throughout Los Angeles, as we crash tomorrow’s city council meeting to demand safer streets for all of us.

And urge our elected leaders to have the courage to do the right thing.

Be there at Los Angeles City Hall, 200 North Spring Street, for the 10 am council meeting. And be sure to fill out a speaker card to get your one minute of speaking time at the microphone.

I’ll try to get there a little early to meet everyone outside; if not, you’ll find me at the back of the chamber as the meeting starts.

And come back this afternoon, when we’ll have two more open letters to the city council, from Amanda Gohl.

………

Local

Streetsblog confirms the arrest in the hit-and-run death of Frederick “Woon” Frazier, while noting that the LAPD has refused to return calls about the case.

CD15 Councilmember Joe Buscaino reports a bike rider was hospitalized after getting struck by a driver in Watts Tuesday evening.

More misleading stats about the Mar Vista Great Streets project from the “chief grassroots organizer” of traffic safety denying “road diet opposition group Restore Venice Blvd,” who concedes there was extensive outreach for the project before accusing the city of inadequate outreach for the project. Here’s my response to her equally misleading post on City Watch.

Curbed recommends four rides to explore Los Angeles on two wheels, including the Eastside Mural Ride, Ballona Creek, and riding to Dodger Stadium.

The Santa Monica Daily Press post their short list of Bike Week activities. Although someone should tell them to post it before most them are over.

Lifehacker says go ahead and get bike riding lessons for your kids, recommending classes from REI and the YMCA, as well as LA’s C.I.C.L.E and Bicycle Kitchen.

 

State

Calbike announces their endorsements for two ballot initiatives, lieutenant governor and a trio of SoCal legislative races.

The Press-Enterprise reports on the Rides of Silence in the Inland Empire.

The local newspaper profiles Folsom’s first family of bicycling.

Bike-riding volunteers deliver fresh burritos to San Francisco’s homeless people each month.

 

National

It turns out Millennials are driving and buying homes after all.

The usual suspects lead a new report of America’s most bikeable cities, with Minneapolis and Portland leading the way, followed by Chicago, Denver, San Francisco and Seattle. It’s a list that bears little resemblance to People for Bikes’ recent rankings.

High on the list of laws that shouldn’t have to be passed, Albuquerque NM is moving to prohibit parking and driving in bike lanes.

The future of bicycling in Kansas City includes a protected and connected bike network.

A Houston writer says drivers have got to stop their victim-blaming excuses.

A Brooklyn website accuses New York of favoring rich ebike riders while thousands of delivery drivers suffer.

A New York bicyclist is suing the city after NYPD officers were caught on camera using their patrol car as a weapon to knock him off his bike, then lied that he resisted arrest, when the video shows him standing calming and submitting to handcuffs. And never mind the dope they claimed he had on him. Intentionally striking a bike rider with a police car is an illegal use of deadly force, posing a risk of serious, if not fatal, injuries even at slow speeds.

Writing in the New York Times, an architect and urban planner says there are better ways of getting around town than driving.

A Pennsylvania man hopes to someday ride a bike again, ten months after he was intentionally run down by the driver of an SUV who fled the scene, and still hasn’t been caught.

South Carolina residents are dusting off their bicycles after learning repairs to a bridge could take four weeks.

 

International

An automotive fleet website ranks the world’s ten best bike cities; New York and DC get an honorable mention.

Now you can sit on, and not just in, your Rapha.

Quebec bike riders can now ride through a red light on the walk signal after coming to a full stop and yielding to pedestrians, and don’t have to signal for a stop, which no one usually does anyway.

After two years of Vision Zero, Toronto bike and pedestrian deaths are still not coming down.

Not surprisingly, traffic injuries and deaths has dropped by half at London’s Bank Junction after banning all traffic other than buses and bicycles.

Taking a page from soccer, British cops hand out yellow cards to warn riders of bicycling violations. Does getting two yellow cards mean you get tossed off your bike? And if you’re not successful enough, could you get relegated to a lower town?

A writer for the Guardian explains why she moved her family to a nearly carfree city in the Netherlands. As if any explanation is necessary.

An Aussie newspaper disabuses readers of their anti-bike misconceptions, pointing out that’s it’s legal to ride abreast and bicyclists are not obstructing traffic just because they’re not driving.

Shenzhen, China’s Qianhai business district will get its own elevated walking and biking pathway, similar to New York’s successful High Line Park.

 

Competitive Cycling

Good news for bike racing fans. Amgen has renewed its sponsorship of the Tour of California for another two years.

American Brent Bookwalter was back for yesterday’s time trial in the Tour of California, eleven years after he nearly lost his leg karate kicking a light pole.

The winner of the time trial was a local favorite who jumped into the leader’s jersey, but may not win the war.

A Sacramento TV station offers a glossary of bike terms for any wheel suckers who may be turning in for the first time.

In today’s nearly spoiler-free Giro report, the man in the pink leader’s jersey says he’ll keep attacking leading up to Tuesday’s time trial.

Britain’s Cyclist magazine says this is how you celebrate a win.

https://twitter.com/AmgenTOC/status/996537221564907520?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cyclist.co.uk%2Fnews%2F4762%2Fwatch-how-to-celebrate-a-victory-as-a-professional-cyclist

 

Finally…

Before you ride through an abandoned railroad tunnel, make sure it really is. Kiss your Dutch beer bike goodbye.

And happy 199th birthday to New York’s bicycling community. Scroll down after clicking the link.

No, further. Seriously, keep scrolling.

………

Ramadan mubarak!

Morning Links: Storm City Hall for safer streets on May 18th, and killer Kalamazoo driver convicted of murder

As the great prophet Howard Beale once said, “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!”

And I’m willing to march on City Hall by myself if that’s what it takes.

I’ve spent the last several weeks trying, and failing, to get support from LA advocacy groups for a plan for bike riders and pedestrians to storm city hall on Bike to Work Day this month to demand safer streets.

While I understand their need for campaigns and strategic planning, too many people are dying right now. And too many city councilmembers are backing away from the promises we were made.

So if this isn’t the right time for action, when is?

As I struggled with my own anger over the recent rash of bicycling fatalities and fatal hit-and-runs, I kept coming back to the questions of if not me, then who? And if not now, when?

Do we wait until someone else dies? Or twenty more people?

Do we wait until the next road diet is cancelled by councilmembers caving to angry drivers and traffic safety deniers?

And when is the right time to demand demand safer streets? As the Chinese proverb famously says, the best time would have been 20 years ago.

The second best time is now.

It’s my intention to give the mayor and every member of the council a copy of Profiles in Courage and Do The Right Thing, and see if they get the message. If we can raise just $400 in the next week to cover the costs, I’ll do it.

Besides, we only need another $375, thanks to a donation from Douglas M to get things started.

But either way, I’m going to be there on May 18th, even if that means standing alone before the city council.

Because something needs to be done now.

I hope you’ll join me. And help spread the word, so we can get as many people as possible to show up that day.

And I hope you’ll consider making a contribution to help send a message to the council that it’s time to show a little courage and do the right thing.

Update: I’ve been reminded that the LA City Council doesn’t meet on Thursdays, so doing this on Bike to Work Day won’t work. 

The question is whether it’s better do storm city hall on Tuesday, May 15th after the Blessing of the Bicycles, Wednesday the 16th before the Ride of Silence, or Friday the 18th before Bike Night at Union Station.

So what works better for you? Let me know in the comments below.

Update 2: It looks like Friday, May 18th works for more people. So that’s the day we’re storming City Hall.

………

Guilty.

In a verdict that shouldn’t surprise anyone, the driver responsible for the Kalamazoo massacre has been convicted on five counts of second degree murder for killing five bike riders in a drug-driven 2016 crash, and injuring another four.

Charles Pickett Jr. was also convicted of five counts of causing death while driving under the influence, after allegedly popping a handful of pain pills before getting behind the wheel. In addition, he had meth in his system as well as alcohol at the time of the crash.

Pickett now faces a possible life sentence when he’s sentenced next month.

A well-deserved one.

Thanks to Adam Ginsberg for the heads-up.

………

This is the cost of traffic violence.

In a heartbreaking story, a writer looks at the devastating effects of a Texas hit-and-run.

Boston magazine offers an in-depth examination of the events leading up to the death of a brilliant surgeon when she was right hooked by a truck driver while riding to work. And the police investigation that went out of its way to blame the victim.

………

Local

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti joined with other mayors around the world to issue a Commitment to Green and Healthy Streets, envisioning “a future where walking, cycling, and shared transport are how the majority of citizens move around our cities.” However, as Streetsblog points out, it takes more than lip service to be a climate mayor. It will be very hard for LA to live up to that commitment as long as city councilmembers are free to cancel safety and Complete Streets projects to appease angry drivers.

Streetsblog examines the dangers faced by many bike riders on the streets that go well beyond traffic safety. Like the 14-year old bike rider gunned down in a quiet Azusa neighborhood yesterday.

 

State

The Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) will relaunch their Go Human campaign throughout their six-county region for Bike Month.

Celebrate Bike Month with ten bike trails within ten miles of Morro Bay.

 

National

NACTO presents a nationwide study of bikeshare in the US; while docked bikes outnumber dockless bikes 56% to 44%, only 4% of the actual trips are taken by dockless bikeshare. Something that’s likely to change as dockless bikeshare matures in this country.

In an absolutely brilliant move — sarcasm intendedVista Outdoor responds to the recent boycott by bike retailers over the AR-15 rifles made by one of their subsidiaries by deciding to stop selling guns. And get those darn bike people off their backs by getting rid of their bicycling equipment divisions, as well.

You can now control your LED-lighted Lumos bike helmet with your Apple watch, assuming you have either one. Or buy them both at your friendly neighborhood Apple Store if you don’t.

NPR looks at the LaneSpotter app, which allows users to flag problems with bikeways in real time, like a WAZE for bike riders.

Building bamboo bikes in Oahu.

A Portland nonprofit intends to collect 1,000 bicycles in a single day to refurbish and donate to kids in need.

A Washington sheriff’s deputy says police have to actually observe a traffic violation, such as a violation of the three-foot passing law, in order to write a ticket. Unfortunately, the law is no different here in California.

A Seattle website says the ebike craze has become a verifiable movement in the city.

A Spokane WA bike commuter compares bicyclists to the NRA, and says some bike riders in the city are just jerks. Bicyclists are human, some humans are jerks. Therefore, some bicyclists will inevitably be jerks. Just like some drivers and pedestrians. 

Forget protein bars. Austin TX bike riders get free tacos for breakfast on Bike to Work Day.

Houston residents are calling for changes after two people are killed in the same spot while riding bikes in the last two years; a crowdfunding campaign raised $15,000 to send the latest victim’s body back to India.

Evanston IL city aldermen reject a call to remove a parking-protected bike lane, after a female alderman — alderperson? — calls them “an absolute disaster at rush hour.”

Speaking of Evanston, a local man discovers how it feels when his bike has a starring role in a police chase.

New York council members call on the mayor to stop the city’s ridiculous ebike ban, and talk with the food delivery riders who use them to develop new rules.

 

International

Cycling Industry News considers why the bike industry has such a hard time catching counterfeiters. Which is why you should always buy from a reputable source; any deal that seems too good to be true probably is.

An Ottawa TV station says people are taking to bicycles and ebikes to fight rising gas prices.

Cambridge, England council candidates consider calls to ban parents from driving their kids to school. Unlike the US, where schools attempt to ban kids from biking or walking to class.

One more to add to your bike bucket list — Spain’s sun-soaked Mallorca island.

Tel Aviv, Israel opens the first velodrome in the Middle East.

Around 50 Brisbane, Australia bicyclists stage a die-in to call for better bike safety, tying up traffic during the morning rush hour. While the technique can be effective, we don’t win any friends by inconveniencing people just trying to get to work.

 

Finally…

Ten ways to tell others on the road that an angel just got its wings. Call it a secure dockless bikeshare parking spot.

And the Foos are some of us, too.

Most of them, anyway.

 

Morning Links: It’s Bike Week in LA County, Election Day tomorrow, and the Amgen ToC women’s tour wraps up

It’s Bike Week.

The one week of the year devoted to getting more people out on bicycles, when elected officials, which some notable exceptions — both good and bad — act like we actually matter.

As opposed to the other 51, when they generally forget we exist.

And there’s a long list of events to celebrate this week.

While we’re on the subject, a few more events are coming up on three of the next four Sundays.

……….

Speaking of Bike to Work Day, The Source offers three reasons you’ll want to Bike to Work on Thursday. And Bicycling busts nine myths that could keep you from riding that day.

………

One more bike-related event this week, as election day finally rolls around tomorrow in CD1 and CD7.

The Daily News says bike lanes in Pacoima and Sunland are off to a bumpy start, and have become an issue in the CD7 election.

In one last interview, KCRW talks with CD1 challenger Joe Bray-Ali about his online comments, unpaid back taxes and why LA voters should trust him.

Despite the controversy over the last few weeks, my personal feeling is that Bray-Ali is still a better choice than the incumbent Gil Cedillo, who has proven himself to be unresponsive and out of touch with his district, and inexplicably committed to keeping the streets of CD1 dangerous.

But only you can make that choice for yourself.

So vote your conscience.

………

Before we move on, let’s pause for a quick sponsored post from my friends Jon Riddle and Sarah Amelar, authors of Where to Bike Los Angeles.

Don’t let National Bike Month slip by without adding Where to Bike Los Angeles to your cycling library. It’s the best riding guide for LA by far, and you can pick it up during the ongoing one-month sale — this May only — for less than twenty bucks a copy directly from the authors’ Amazon store.

………

This is what life looks like from inside the peloton at the women’s Amgen Tour of California.

 

Saturday’s third stage was won by Tustin’s Coryn Rivera in a group sprint. Rivera did well in Sunday’s time trial, which ended in a one second victory in the overall standings.

Meanwhile, women from Pakistan and Afghanistan are competing in Pakistan’s second annual Women’s Cycling Championship, in a far more challenging environment where women are actively discouraged from riding, let alone racing, bicycles.

………

The LA Times looks forward to the Amgen Tour of California, suggesting defending national time trial champ Taylor Phinney should feel right at home since he trains in Southern California half the year. Sunday’s opening stage was a good day for Germany’s Marcel Kittel.

American Tejay van Garderen is relaxing into a different way of riding in his first Giro. Sunday’s stage was marred by yet another crash with a race vehicle; VeloNews calls it chaos and questions the sportsmanship of not stopping the peloton when race favorites go down.

No need for pros to give a racing fan a souvenir from the Giro when they can just take it themselves.

Great news from Australia, as South African cyclist Keagan Girdlestone is competing in his first race after nearly dying when he crashed through the rear window of a team support vehicle while racing in Italy.

On a sadly related subject, several British riders were injured in a local race when they smashed into the side of an ambulance on a fast descent, with one rider going through the van’s window.

………

Local

The long-discussed bike, pedestrian and equestrian bridge across the LA River in Atwater is finally nearing approval this month, despite a $16.1 million price tag. Hopefully, separate spans for horses and humans will keep the horse riders from trying to get bicyclists banned, unlike another bridge in the area.

Pasadena police plan to celebrate Bike Week by ticketing anyone who breaks traffic laws that can put pedestrians or bicyclists at risk today — including bike riders who fail to observe the laws that apply to motorists. Because the best way to discourage bike commuting is to ticket people just trying it out.

No, that wasn’t a bomb on the campus of Biola University in La Mirada. Just a bike tire exploding in a recycling bin.

 

State

The CHP celebrates Bike Month by telling drivers to obey the three-foot passing law, and telling bicyclists that drivers don’t run stop signs.

The San Diego Union-Tribune says it’s ludicrous for city projections to call for eighteen percent of people who live within half a mile of transit station to commute by bike by 2035. Even though that’s a very limited subset of the population, and just calls for an increase of roughly one percent a year, which should be doable if the city follows through on its ambitious plans to improve infrastructure.

Coronado considers a proposal to cut bicycle fines in half, from $100 to $50. But doesn’t say what the fines are for.

The Press-Enterprise recalls when the legendary Annie Londenderry rode through Riverside on her 1894 bicycle journey around the world.

Horrible news from Santa Paula, where a man was seen riding off on his bicycle after beating a man who was sleeping on a park bench and setting him on fire.

A former traffic safety engineer says Paso Robles needs to stop painting bike lanes in residential neighborhoods, because he thinks they’re too wide and will make property values go down. Never mind that narrowing traffic lanes slows drivers — which he should know — and bike lanes usually make property values go the other way.

Sad news from the Bay Area, where a Hayward man was killed riding his bike in nearby Sunol when a pickup driver rear-ended him on a road with no shoulder; the driver played the universal Get Out of Jail Free Card by claiming the sun was in her eyes and she just didn’t see him.

A Napa paper says you probably need a gravel bike.

 

National

Auto Week explains how self-driving cars will hopefully avoid bicyclists and pedestrians.

Taking quinine might help your muscle cramps — if it doesn’t kill you.

Bicycling talks with 24-year old Amanda Corker, who set a new year record with more than 86,000 miles in a single year, averaging 236.8 miles a day.

An injured Oregon bike rider was the victim of apparent street-racing hit-and-run pickup drivers.

New York will install bike lanes on a Brooklyn street after 5,600 people signed a petition calling for it.

Sixty-six years old, riding a bicycle, and slinging heroin laced with fentanyl on New York streets. Which is pretty much my entire retirement plan. Thanks to Tim Rutt for the heads-up.

About time. A New York man is teaming with an Israeli company to develop a device that would allow police officers to tell if a driver has been texting.

A writer for the Wall Street Journal demonstrates that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, celebrating the walkability of the city, while lamenting the safety improvements that help keep that possible, because it makes her cab rides take longer.

A DC columnist mostly gets it, saying it’s illegal for anyone to run a red light, whether walking, riding a bicycle or driving, but that only drivers pose a significant risk to others. However, he fails to consider that Idaho bicyclists are allowed to go through a light after stopping and observing the right of way, and that riders in several other states can legally go through a light that fails to change, including here California. But good luck telling a cop that.

A Virginia writer considers what causes road raging drivers to threaten cyclists.

The war on cars may be mythical, but the war on bikes is all too real, as a New Orleans man was shot with a pellet gun while participating in a weekly group ride.

 

International

A Kiwi couple has made it deep into Mexico on a bikepacking journey from Alaska to Argentina that started in June of last year.

Patrolling Guatemala City by bicycle.

A Canadian woman goes for her first bike ride at 97 years old.

A British cop rides her way back to mental and physical health after surviving stage three breast cancer.

When an Indian woman jumped in front of a train after fighting with her parents over replacing the stolen bicycle she used to commute to college, her mother jumped in front of it to try to save her; sadly, both women were killed.

What the hell is wrong with people? An Aussie man intentionally ran a bicyclist off the road with his motorcycle, then bragged about it in a nearby café as his victim lay dying; he faces up to 25 well-deserved years behind bars after pleading guilty to manslaughter.

In what may be the most ridiculous survey of the year, 70 percent of drivers in Australia’s Victoria state think streets are too dangerous for cyclists, and two out of five reported a near miss with someone on a bicycle. Never mind that they’re the ones who make it dangerous for people on bikes.

 

Finally…

No, Lance is not dead. Make sure your bike is strapped on tight before you drive.

And if you’re going to steal motorcycles and ebikes, it’s probably not the best idea to post photos of yourselves standing on a police car.

Morning Links: Climate Riders still need help, ending the war on our streets, and more on the Mobility Plan debacle

We’ve stalled once again at 14 new or renewing members of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition in the first-ever May BikinginLA LACBC Membership Drive.

So take a few moments to add your voice to SoCal’s leading bike advocacy organization. Or if you’re already a member, encourage your family, friends and co-workers who ride, or who simply support bicycling, to sign up today. And get some great LACBC bike swag in the process.

And thanks to everyone who has joined already!

………

A couple of Climate Riders for Team LACBC still need a little help with donations to meet their commitment for the ride. Nicole Rostoker and Cesar Garcia only have until the end day today to collect another $500 and $200 respectively. So give them a boost if you can.

Meanwhile, a Climate Ride training ride will be held on Latigo Canyon Road on Saturday; the ride is open to anyone who needs a good workout, regardless of whether you’re participating in the Climate Ride.

………

Today’s must read comes from the Wall Street Journal’s bike riding sports columnist Jason Gay, who tells America that bike riders are not your enemy, and calls for an end to the ridiculous battle between cyclists, pedestrians and drivers.

Not to mention making what may be the first known reference to bird-flipping koalas.

………

UCLA’s Daily Bruin reports on Wednesday’s meeting of the LA City Council Transportation Committee, which voted to remove Westwood Blvd from the Mobility Plan. Maybe someone should tell Paul Koretz that the solution to a dangerous street isn’t keeping it dangerous.

Meanwhile, LAist’s Matt Tinoco does a good job of explaining the whole convoluted process.

And the LACBC offers their take on the sordid mess as they continue to fight to keep the plan intact, saying the proposed removal demonstrates a lack of engagement with the community, as well as a commitment to build a complete transportation network that works for everyone.

………

We’ve got dual Bike Blessings in today’s news.

Katrina Bada forwards a reminder of Tuesday’s 2016 Blessing of the Bicycles at Good Samaritan Hospital, which will honor bike-friendly LA Councilmember Joe Buscaino, as well as featuring special guest Mayor Eric Garcetti.

The future mayor retrieves his bike at the 2005 Blessing of the Bicycles

The future mayor retrieves his bike at the 2005 Blessing of the Bicycles

Dr. Michael Cahn sends word that St. John’s Health Center in Santa Monica will host their own Blessing of the Bicycles at 2 pm on Bike to Work Day next Thursday. Although they could have done a better job of promoting it.

In other Bike Week news, Santa Monica Spoke lists SaMo’s Bike to Work Day pit stops, as well as a Bike from Work Handlebar Happy Hour next Thursday.

And the LACBC is hosting their own Bike from Work Handlebar Happy Hour at the Angel City Brewery in DTLA the same day.

………

Still more Bike Month news, as the Bay Area celebrated Bike to Work Day a week before LA County.

SFist says San Francisco officials only pretend to care about cycling on the city’s Bike to Work Day.

Napa shows a 25% to 30% increase in bike riders stopping at the city’s energizer stations compared to last year.

Bike to Work Day was probably the wrong day to try to flee the scene after hitting a San Francisco bike rider in front of a group of cyclists and other onlookers, who rushed to grab the driver’s keys and prevent her from leaving. Update: It looks like the wreck was an intentional assault with a deadly weapon. 

………

Caught on video: The owner of a Fresno bike shop throws in the towel after a series of smash and grab burglaries, vowing to reopen somewhere else, hopefully a little safer. Thanks to Cristina Rayas for the link.

………

Tom Dumoulin extends his lead in the Giro, while Lotto-Soudal rider Tim Wellens wins the sixth stage in a solo breakaway.

South Pasadena prepares to host the second stage of the Amgen Tour of California, while CiclaValley continues his run-up to the race with a look at the riders to watch.

Which can be summed up in two words: Peter Sagan. Thanks to Edward Rubinstein for the link.

………

Local

Too little, too late? A deadly stretch of North Figueroa gets a flashing traffic signal. Rather than the fully funded, shovel ready road diet that might actually have saved lives if it hadn’t been stopped by CM Gil Cedillo.

Richard Risemberg says it’s time to say goodbye to Cedillo, as three people announce their candidacy in an attempt to make him a one-term councilmember.

Streetsblog reports a that meeting was held last night to discuss a road diet and bike lanes proposed for Fletcher Drive in Atwater Village; the story says a similar project on nearby Verdugo Road is in the early stages of discussion.

A judge orders a pair of sheriff’s deputies to provide photos of their tattoos to show if they’re members of an LASD gang clique; the officers are being sued in the 2013 fatal shooting of Terry Laffite in South LA.

West Hollywood considers a new list of names for their coming bikeshare system; they also have better streets to ride them on. Personally, I liked the rejected WeHoGo.

The Source explains how to get to the new Expo Line stations, including options for bike share and bike parking; the line officially opens one week from today.

Santa Monica will hold yet another of their bike and pedestrian safety enforcements on Saturday. By now, you know the protocol: Obey the letter of the law until you get outside the SaMo city limits.

Long Beach ranks tenth on Zillow’s list of the ten most bike friendly cities in the US, while another website rates it the eighth most charming city of its size.

 

State

Three Santa Barbara women are being honored for bringing “the joy of bicycling to countless youth” and making cycling safer and more accessible for everyone.

The Fresno Bee looks at next week’s Ride of Silence; last year’s Clovis/Fresno ride was the largest in the state. If you missed it, CiclaValley offers a guest post on next Wednesday’s San Fernando Valley’s Ride of Silence.

A San Francisco public TV and radio station examines the role of data in improving safety for bicyclists.

Berkeley opens a new buffered — not protected, apparently — bike lane where a woman was nearly killed by a stoned driver while riding her bike earlier this year.

The National Park Service suggests reopening a trail that would give bike riders a safer route into Sausalito, while providing expansive views of the Golden Gate Bridge.

Davis doctors call for greater bike helmet use, while Treehugger says helmets are the last thing we should be worrying about when it comes to bicycle safety. As we’ve discussed before, I never ride without mine. But helmets should always be considered a defense of last resort when all else fails.

 

National

A new infographic shows the overwhelming benefits of protected bike lanes, including spurring economic growth, improving safety for pedestrians and making driving less stressful. Someone should send this to Paul Koretz. Not that he’s likely to care, of course.

Strong Towns says the economic benefits of bicycling can’t be ignored. Although LA seems to be doing a pretty good job of it; maybe if LADOT did a better job of selling bikeways, local businesses and homeowners would be fighting to get theirs instead of fighting to stop them.

Chicago Magazine offers an insider’s guide to biking in the Windy City.

An X-Games cyclist shares his journey to mental health with Niagara NY area high school students.

A former bike racer walked away from Wall Street to make high-end sport bicycles.

Sad news, as a retired New Jersey cop has died of injuries he suffered on the first day of the Police Unity Tour to honor fallen police officers.

A 17-mile DC ride has already registered close to 6,000 riders with 10 days still to go.

An article in the Washington Post says bicycling is more dangerous than you think, while another site argues that bike commuting is good for you. Actually, your odds of surviving any given ride are over 6.3 million to one; try taking that to Vegas.

A Louisiana driver gets 25 years for the DUI death of a seven-year old girl as she was riding her bike home, although he could be out in as little as three years with time served.

 

International

A proposed revision to Quebec law would require drivers to change lanes to pass a bike rider.

A new police bicycle can read license plates and measure the speeds of passing cars. We need a Kickstarter to buy one for every bike cop on the LAPD. And me, too.

 

Finally…

So if a car exiting a freeway hit a bike rider, why does the headline say the cyclist collided with the car? If you’re going to get run down by a beer truck, try to make sure it’s a decent craft brew and not just hops-flavored water.

And a funeral home billboard drives home the message not to text behind the wheel.

 

A raft of bike-related court cases; L.A.’s revised bike plan MIA.

Dj Wheels catches us up on the current of court cases affecting the cycling community — some of which we’ve discussed before, along with a few new ones in the ever expanding list of drivers brought to justice.

Robert Sam Sanchez, charged in the hit-and-run death of Rod Armas in Malibu while allegedly intoxicated, had his Preliminary Setting continued to May 26 at 8:30 am in the Malibu Courthouse.

According to Wheels —

I didn’t see anyone that appeared to be there for the victim’s family, but there were plenty family members there in support of the Defendant. The deputy DA said again that there would either be a disposition on this day (ie. a plea deal entered) or there would be a date selected for a Preliminary Hearing (a mini trial before the judge to determine if there is sufficient evidence to hear the case before a jury).

William Keith Square, arrested in the hit-and-run death of a still-unnamed cyclist in Carson on April 17th, was arraigned three days later and entered a not guilty plea on all counts. A Preliminary Setting was held on May 5th, and Preliminary Hearing scheduled for June 10 at 8:30 am. Notes Wheels, “Funny how when you don’t have private counsel, the process moves a lot faster.”

Angelina Gailine Everett, accused of the hit-and-run that left an injured Ed Magos lying in the street on January 6. Dj Wheels explains —

She initially stopped, but then left the scene without rendering aid or exchanging information with the injured cyclist. The city attorney was not going to file charges at first, but after pressure from the cycling community and a promise from the newly appointed Chief Beck to request that the C.A. take a second look at it, charges were finally filed on April 6. There was an initial arraignment date of May 6, but apparently Everett did not show up. According to my sources, the city attorney might have sent the citation and notice to appear for her arraignment to an old address.  The court’s system still doesn’t have a new arraignment date entered.

Everett is charged with:

1) one misdemeanor count of leaving the scene of a collision where there physical injuries to one of the involved parties – CVC 20001

2) one misdemeanor count of leaving the scene of a collision where there is property damage – CVC 20002(A)

Naira Margaryan, accused in the death of Gerado Ramos 13 months after he was struck while riding in a Glendale crosswalk.

On September 23, 2008, Margaryan ran over a cyclist at a crosswalk in a residential section of Glendale, after allegedly blowing through a stop sign. Detective Mankarios of the Glendale PD claims the victim cyclist was somehow also at fault in violation of the Cal Vehicle Code by riding his bike on the sidewalk. The case was filed on April 30. There was an initial arraignment date of May 13, and the defendant appeared with private counsel but did not enter her plea. Arraignment was continued to June 2 at 8:30am at the Glendale Courthouse in Dept. 1.

Margaryan is charged with:

1) one misdemeanor count of vehicular manslaughter without gross negligence – PC 192(c)(2)

In a non-bike related case, former state legislator Walter Karabian stands accused of assaulting an unnamed parking attendant during a USC football game last fall. Wheels reports that a pretrial conference was heard on May 13, with another hearing scheduled for June 10 for compliance with discovery requests, as well as a Trial Setting Conference. A jury trial has been tentatively scheduled for July 19.

Yelena Krupen is accused of damaging the property of an unnamed victim in a hit-and-run collision while driving with a suspended license.

On December 3, 2009, Krupen struck a cyclist from behind with her Mercedes on Santa Monica Blvd at Bedford Ave. in Beverly Hills, causing damage to the bicycle. However, Krupen immediately left the scene after backing up off the rear wheel of the bike. Another motorist who witnessed the incident followed the Mercedes for a short distance, wrote down the license plate and returned to the scene with the info, which was later provided to the BHPD. After an investigation by BHPD and some complaints to the BH City Council for what was feared would become a dismissal, charges were filed on March 15, 2010.

Arraignment was held on March 26 and Krupen pleaded not guilty to both counts with the assistance of the Public Defender. A pretrial conference was held on April 23, which was continued to May 20. The defendant was not present but appeared by private counsel. She was ordered to be present at the next hearing.

Krupen is charged with:

1)one misdemeanor count of failing to stop and provide information at the scene of a collision where there is property damage only – CVC 20002(A)

2)one misdemeanor count of driving with suspended/revoked license – CVC 14601.1(A)

And still no word on charges against Patrick Roraff, the 18-year old driver who allegedly killed pro cyclist Jorge Alvarado while street racing near San Bernardino on April 8th.

………

Remember the new bike plan that seemed to be such a big deal last year? Yeah, me neither. LACBC seems to recall that LADOT promised us a revised plan all the way back in February, and — justifiably — takes the city to task for failing to schedule a realistic release date three months later. And oh-so-politely points the finger at the upper echelons of the department.

Seems to me that if the people in charge at LADOT wanted to release a bike plan, it would have happened already. So here’s my polite suggestion. Either get with the program, or get hell out of the way so people who actually give a damn about cycling in this city can get something done.

Otherwise, you may find L.A.’s cycling community gathered on LADOT’s doorstep with a different finger extend.

And this one won’t be pointing.

………

Richie Porte keeps the leader’s jersey in the Giro; Vinokourov starts his comeback by gaining 10 seconds on the leader, leaving him just 9 minutes and 48 seconds behind. Thursday’s Amgen Tour of California was not hijacked by Floyd Landis, despite appearances to the contrary; Michael Rogers — no relation — claims the leader’s jersey despite having the same overall time as Dave Zabriskie.

Landis-accused Lance Armstrong crashes out at the beginning of the stage, while Greg “Everyone is a Doper but Me” LeMond sides with Landis for a change; tune in tomorrow for As the ToC Turns.

Meanwhile, Blog Downtown anticipates big crowds and closures on Saturday.

………

Gary gets a pleasant Bike to Work Day surprise — along with some not so nice surprises. Bike to Work Day is celebrated in Claremont and by the LACBC Downtown, while UCLA offers Bike to School Day. Metro offers free rides to cyclists with helmets, but may have forgotten to tell their drivers. And a little Tweet pressure gets Trader Joe’s to think twice about opening in Bike Week without bike parking.

………

LADOT continues their advice for beginning cyclists. Pasadena tells cyclists to please stay off the sidewalk. A new OC bike shop will offer dial-up roadside service. Hemet police find cyclists at fault in 16 of 18 collisions; yeah, no hint of bias there. A cyclist in Oakland is killed when he gets doored by a driver and forced into a bus. On the heels of the worldwide popularity of the Tweed ride comes the Seersucker Ride; seriously, does anyone look good in seersucker? Dave Moulton notes that most drivers would give a stray dog more than three feet clearance, so why not a cyclist? The obvious answer is most people like dogs. A cyclist confesses to running red lights, carefully. Boulder CO police are looking for the speeding driver of a $110,000 Mercedes SUV who fled the scene after striking a cyclist in a bike lane. The Washington Post says sharing the road is a two-way street. Evidently, there’s a rash of narco-cyclists in Dallas; oddly, they lifted the photo from USC’s Daily Trojan. A Miami rider says a bus driver ran over him on purpose; the driver claims the cyclist intentionally collided with the bus. Truckers call a proposed new law that would require a four foot distance when passing a cyclist — five feet above 49 mph — “insanity.” Korea prepares a new mandatory bike registration plan to deal with the problem of abandoned bikes. Drivers going through bus and bike-only traffic lights are turning a Birmingham UK road into a ring of death.

Finally, this is pretty much the definition of a very lucky bicyclist.

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