In a city where apathy is too often the norm, a group of angry and saddened bicyclists rode to LA city hall Friday night to call for safer streets.
And protest the hit-and-run death of Frederick “Woon” Franzier.
Writing for Curbed Los Angeles, Matt Tinoco captured the spirit of the ride.
We have to… make the roads safer for cyclists and pedestrians,” Edin Barrientos, who leads a popular Monday night group ride called Chief Lunes, told mourners. “The culture we have in LA, our car culture, it’s not promoting life. It’s not safe for anyone to be on the streets…”
“I’ve been doing this eight years, and not any of those years have I felt fear for my life as I do at this moment,” says Barrientos. “It’s becoming a norm, you know, losing people on the bike. We lost a teenager in Woodland Hills less than two weeks ago.
A crowdfunding campaign to help pay funeral expenses for Frazier has raised a little over $2,500 out of a $4,000 goal.
Meanwhile, another crowdfunding campaign to help pay the medical expenses of Quatrell Stallings, the bicyclist intentionally struck by a hit-and-run driver as he was helping people cross the street at Wednesday’s protest over Frazier’s death, has raised less than $300 of the $20,000 goal.
Let’s hope this is just the start of a grassroots effort to reclaim streets. And honor Frederick Frazier by ensuring no one else will ever have to suffer the same fate.
And don’t get me started on what the hell is wrong with a country where you have to raise funds online to bury one victim of a hit-and-run, and help the victim of another get the medical care he needs.
Photo by Matt Tinoco from Curbed LA website.
On a related subject, Reddit has been going wild responding to a since deleted question asking why car culture is increasingly violent toward cyclists in Los Angeles?
Thanks to Evan Burbridge for the link.
Nonprofit group Bikes 4 Orphans — which does exactly what the name implies — will be hosting a fundraising concert on May 3rd.
According to the group’s Twitter account,
The proceeds of the concert will help a
#Kenyan orphanage with 110 girls between ages 8-18 who must walk 2 hours to get to school each day! During their commute, they are at risk for sexual harassments! Most girls stop going school because it’s NOT safe walking!
As we noted awhile back, traffic in central London has decreased 44% since 1999, while bicycles have become the leading form of transportation.
Which benefits everyone through better public health, less traffic and reduced air pollution levels.
And if they can do that with London’s bad weather and narrow streets, imagine what we could do on the wide boulevards of sunny Los Angeles.
Eagle Rock school kids wrote city officials to demand Dutch-style bike paths 44 years ago. Needless to say, they still haven’t gotten them.
Santa Monica Spoke is hosting a ride with the mayor of Santa Monica and a handlebar happy hour on April 26th.
A 40-year old man was shot while riding in San Diego’s Logan Heights neighborhood early Saturday morning when he rode past a parked car, and the passenger jumped out and fired. If there’s still any question about how tough bike riders are, the victim rode to a nearby fast food stand for help after being shot twice in the butt and once in the leg. Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up.
A Bakersfield bike rider was clipped by a flying dog after it darted out from a nearby house and got hit by a truck; both the dog and rider seemed to be okay afterwards.
The Atlantic describes how advances in women’s clothing had as much to do with their newfound freedoms in the 1890s as advances in bicycle design.
It’s an Atlantic doubleheader, as the magazine takes on the absurd primacy of the automobile in American life.
A Seattle writer says despite what opponents claim, a planned lane reduction in the city has undergone an extensive public process, while opponents have no stats or facts to back up their dubious claims against it. If that sounds familiar, it may be because one of LA’s leading traffic safety deniers has been advising the Seattle group fighting the plans.
Four years and hundreds of deaths after Phoenix adopted a complete streets policy, the city still doesn’t have a plan to make the streets safer.
Life is cheap in Colorado, where a distracted driver gets just 30 days for killing a man on a bike. And will probably serve that on work release.
J. Partick Lynch forwards news of a Detroit ATV rider who was killed when he was tased by police and crashed as a result. Which is the same thing that happens when they do it to someone on a bicycle.
A 17-year old Florida bike rider was killed when he was stuck by a state trooper while trying to cross the street after getting off a bus.
Cycling Weekly says after testing both, you should always choose an aero bike over a lightweight bike.
A Halifax, Canada bicyclist says police made him feel like a criminal when he rode without a helmet, despite Nova Scotia’s mandatory bike helmet law. He also got tickets for failing to ride to the right, and riding on the sidewalk when he stopped for the cops.
An attack on a British bicyclist raises fears of a serial killer in Manchester, after a stranger pushed him into a canal, then pushed him back in a second time as he tried to climb out; 17 people have died in the city’s waterways under unexplained circumstances in the past 10 years.
The war on bikes continues, as London’s former cycling commissioner was rammed off his bike by a road raging driver. And police are looking for whoever sabotaged a Welsh bike trail with nail traps.
A writer for Road.cc says Britain’s proposed dangerous cycling law is just a dangerous distraction from more important safety matters.
Clearly, hit-and-run is not just an American problem. An Irish florist rebuilds her life after her husband was killed in a hit-and-run while riding his bike.
Ireland adopts a new one-meter passing law — the equivalent of our three-foot laws — as an Irish newspaper can’t seem to figure out how the law will work. As for their question about a cyclist splitting lanes at a red light, most similar laws require drivers to pass bicyclists with a minimum three-foot distance, not stay three feet away at all times.
Dutch casual cyclists are being forced off the bike paths by racing cyclists and high-speed ebikes.
Life is cheap in Spain, where an American tourist walks with a one-year suspended sentence for killing a British bike rider after drinking and using amphetamines.
Cape Town, South Africa is getting its first bike mayor.
An Australian doctor speaks out against what he calls a “reckless” campaign to repeal the country’s mandatory bike helmet law after surviving a bike crash himself.
You’ve got to be kidding. After an Aussie triathlete crashed into his riding partner while being threatened by a road raging driver, the driver wasn’t charged — but the rider was charged with reckless riding. Fortunately, wiser heads prevailed, and the charge was dropped.
An Aussie bike mechanic finished his third Iditarod Trail Invitational, a 1000-mile frozen fat tire race through the Alaska wilderness, finishing eight days after the winner; the race follows the course of the famed Iditarod Sled Dog Race.
Spoiler alert: If you’re still planning to watch Sunday’s Amstel Gold classic, skip this section.
Danish cyclist Michael Valgren won Sunday’s Amstel Gold in a final sprint, while Dutch world champion Chantal Blaak won the women’s race. Proof that women and men can compete on equal terms when they’re allowed to.
After a competitor in the Commonwealth Games wrecked his bike in a crash, a fan loans him his own bike to finish the race.
Sri Lankan police threaten to file charges if anyone gets killed by a race moto during bike races in the country.
And the oldest person to ride around the world is a relatively young 56.