Tag Archive for California Transportation Commission

Morning Links: Forgiveness and friendship follows near-fatal PCH crash, and no justice in fatal OC collisions

Sometimes a friendship can form in unusual ways.

Like getting run over by a truck.

After a La Habra man was nearly killed when a pickup driver ran him down from behind as he was riding on PCH last May, the driver — who was leaving an AA meeting — started a crowdfunding campaign to help pay the victim’s medical expenses.

He also modified his shower so it would be easier to get in and out as he recovered from multiple injuries.

That was after the victim’s wife reached out to tell him he was going to survive.

And they’ve been friends ever since.

Tom Sovilla hopes to get back on his back on his bike this year, with a goal of doing 5,000 miles before year’s end.

Meanwhile, the man who hit him, Jack Keith, went to five AA meetings the day after the crash, and looks forward to celebrating three years of sobriety in March.

Photo from Pexels.com; if they can be friends, maybe there’s hope for the rest of us.

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Looks like there may not be any justice for Sidney Siemensma.

The 51-year-old bike rider was stabbed to death just short of three years ago today on Irvine’s San Diego Creek Trail.

Police arrested a 41-year old transient acquaintance, Dennis Thomas Monson Jr., for the crime, as well as an unrelated child pornography charge.

However, despite having enough evidence to take the case to a jury, the case has been put on semi-permanent hold after the judge ruled Monson is mentally incompetent to stand trial.

It’s possible he could still stand trial, if and when his mental state improves.

But I wouldn’t hold your breath.

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There definitely won’t be any justice for Laguna Nigel triathlete Scott Clark, who was killed when he was collateral damage in an alleged road rage dispute between two women.

According to Patch, the Orange County DA has concluded that there is no way to bring charges against driver Jamie Mulford after two independent experts were unable to conclude how the crash occurred.

Clark had the misfortune to run into a crosswalk just as Mulford allegedly cut off the other driver in the lane next to her, forcing the other car into Clark.

Despite what the Patch story says, Clark was training for a triathlon on foot, rather than riding a bike, at the time of the crash.

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It looks like noted equity advocate and former LACBC Executive Director Tamika Butler has left her widely applauded appointment to the California Transportation Commission; no word yet on why.

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A San Diego bike rider was allegedly assaulted by an impatient driver while taking the lane on a sharrowed street.

Unfortunately, whatever took place appears to have happened off-camera, and the brief description included on the YouTube page doesn’t clarify matters.

Thanks to Frank Lehnerz for the link.

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A Tesla dashcam captured a hit-and-run in Whittier last Saturday when a bike rider was right hooked by someone turning onto the street; fortunately, the victim doesn’t appear to be seriously hurt.

No word on whether the driver was arrested, or even ticketed.

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

A drunk Florida man faces charges for chasing a bike rider and throwing an empty beer can at him as cops looked on. After all, there’s no point in wasting a full one.

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

New York police are looking for a bike rider who spit in the face of a pedestrian in a crosswalk after accusing the man of cutting him off, then broke his wrist hitting him with a U-lock.

Also in New York, another bike rider — or possibly the same one — smashed a 61-year old woman in the face with some sort of hard object. Like a U-lock, for instance.

Florida police are police are looking for a hoody-clad man who fired his gun in a bike-by shooting; fortunately, no one was hit.

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Local

BMX riders are the stars of Cirque du Soleil’s new Volta show, opening this weekend at Dodger Stadium.

UCLA’s Daily Bruin says a new request for the Westwood Blvd bike lanes killed by CD5 Councilmember and faux environmentalist Paul Koretz appears to be falling victim to a dispute between Westwood-area Neighborhood Councils. Which one do you think the city will listen to — an NC representing students, or one advocating for wealthy NIMBYs? I know which one my money is on.

Speaking of UCLA, a DIY bike co-op in the John Wooden Center is teaching students and staff how to fix their own bicycles.

Bruce Willis is one of us, as he goes for an ebike ride in Brentwood. The cool thing about British tabloids is they’ll criticize someone for not wearing a helmet, then ridicule them if they do.

LA Curbed places tongue firmly in cheek, and lists 20 headlines you might read in the coming decade, but probably won’t — including permanent, year-round CicLAvia routes and an end to LA traffic deaths.

Alan Goldsmith, the former owner of Supergo, is returning to his roots by investing in Manhattan Beach’s South Bay Cycle bike shop, scheduled to open later this month.

Bike theft dropped 10% in Long Beach last year, despite an increase in violent crime.

 

State

In the wake of last year’s implosion of the Interbike trade show, the CABDA Expo West opens in San Diego today. Even though CABDA stands for the Chicagoland Area Bike Dealers Association, which this ain’t.

An 18-year old Barstow man faces attempted murder charges, along with a pair of underage teenagers, for a drive-by shooting spurred by the victim’s demand to get his stolen bicycle back.

A UC Berkeley neurologist has developed a new type of helmet designed to protect users from traumatic brain injuries caused by twisting impacts.

Lime is testing an accessible scooter for people with disabilities in OaklandAlthough it looks like all they did was bolt a seat onto their existing e-scooters.

San Francisco was already planning to install protected bike lanes along the Embarcadero next week; unfortunately, it comes too late for a woman who’s clinging to life after she was struck by a cement truck while riding an e-scooter on Monday.

Sacramento’s first food bike is peddling a 200-year old stroopwafel recipe.

 

National

American bikemakers are struggling to replace their Chinese supply chains after being priced out by Trump’s tariffs.

A new senior editor for Streetsblog explains her 15-year old transformation to a bike advocate.

A New Mexico state representative is once again riding her bike hundreds of miles across the state from Las Cruces to Santa Fe to attend this year’s legislative session.

My bike-friendly hometown is trying out back-in diagonal parking to improve safety for people on bicycles.

An Iowa woman will spend the next 40 years behind bars for stalking a man, before fatally running him over as he rode his bike in a parking lot, in a deliberate, drunken attack.

A Texas man faces charges for shooting a homeless man five times while trying to steal his bicycle.

Bad behavior has gotten Vermont mountain bikers kicked off parts of one of the East Coast’s best trail systems; Bike Snob says this is why they can’t have nice things.

A New York woman faces five well-deserved felony counts and four misdemeanors for the drunken, 85-mph crash that killed a man on a bicycle; she was still over twice the legal limit more than three hours after the crash, with bags of coke found all over her car.

A Manhattan councilmember calls for life-saving sensors on all large trucks to make drivers aware of people and things they can’t see from the cab. Like bike riders and pedestrians, for instance.

The allegedly racist, bike-riding jerk who was convicted of attacking a black DC driver with his U-lock lucked out when a second, similar charge was dismissed when the victim didn’t show up to court; he’s currently doing three years on the original charge.

A Miami man will face charges in the gruesome, apparently drunken, 100 mph hit-and-run crash that killed a homeless man riding his bike on a causeway last August.

 

International

A new bicycle from World Bicycle Relief can help lift children and their families out of poverty; the nonprofit has provided half a million bicycles in countries around the world.

Cycling Weekly looks forward to what you can look forward to on the bike tech front in the coming year.

The Guardian examines how Strava became a religion to bike riders and runners.

Arguing against building a bike lane, a Hamilton, Ontario city councilor estimates there are only 100 bicyclists in the entire city of 550,000; the city’s bikeshare system alone has over 33,000 members.

That’s more like it. An unlicensed English driver got six years for killing a man riding a bike, along with other unrelated charges; not only didn’t he have a license, he’d never even taken a driving test.

The founders of a British bike nonprofit have been banned for 11 years after paying themselves the equivalent of nearly $420,000 — nearly a quarter of the money it took in.

Staff members for Pink Bike design the mountain bike of the future as a joke. Then go to Taiwan and actually build it.

Life is cheap in Singapore, where a truck driver who was caught on video crashing into a bike rider during a road rage dispute has been sentenced to just seven weeks behind bars and a $500 fine. He’ll also be banned from driving for two years.

 

Competitive Cycling

America’s only remaining Tour de France champ is preparing to launch a new bike line made with a revolutionary “‘high-performance low-cost carbon fiber.”

Cycling Tips rates the team kits of the women’s pro peloton.

Pro/am gravel grinding is coming to the annual Sea Otter Classic this April.

A 17-year old Indian woman has won gold in the nation’s U-21 road race, bouncing back from a training wreck five years earlier that was so bad her mother ordered her to quit cycling, until her father intervened.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can zoom around on your new bike pretending you’re in Stranger Things. Nothing like having a bike tug-of-war with a fleeing meat lifter.

And don’t shoot guy you’re arguing with, shoot his bicycle instead.

 

Morning Links: Jefferson Blvd Complete Streets in line for state funding, and LA pro Phil Gaimon calls it a career

Maybe we really will see some changes around here. Particularly in some of LA County’s less advantaged communities.

Richard Parks forwards news that the California Transportation Commission has recommended funding a number of active transportation projects in LA County.

Topping the list from his perspective is a much needed and hard fought effort to transform Jefferson Blvd into a Complete Street.

The California Transportation Commission has recommended $6 million in funding to make Jefferson Blvd. from Vermont Ave. west to Western Ave. a complete street. The plan calls for protected and buffered bike lanes, pedestrian lighting, sidewalk repairs, street trees and more. This project will link to USC’s Jefferson Blvd. Streetscape Plan which intersects with the MyFigueroa project. The CTC will ratify staff recommendations in December.

Other projects on the list include:

  • $3.4 million for the second phase of the West Santa Ana Branch Bikeway in Paramount
  • $1.8 million for bike and pedestrian enhancements on Atlantic Ave in Cudahy
  • $1 million for the first phase of the Pacoima Wash bike and pedestrian path in San Fernando
  • $1.5 million for intersection improvements at the Slauson Blue Line Station
  • $660,000 for the Garfield Avenue Complete Streets Corridor in South Gate
  • $1 million for a Huntington Park Safe Routes to School project
  • $1.1 million for the Southern California Disadvantaged Communities Planning Initiative
  • $5.3 million for Safe Routes to School pedestrian improvements in Lancaster
  • $2 million for a bike lane gap closure project on Spring Street in Signal Hill
  • $1.4 million for phase II of the DWP’s Los Nietos Safe Routes to School

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LA’s own pro cyclist Phil Gaimon calls it a career after failing to find a WorldTour ride for next season. He says don’t call it retirement, though, in a great self-penned piece that reflects the struggles of most pro cyclists; meanwhile, his Malibu Gran Cookie Dough this Sunday will become his semi-official non-retirement party.

On the other hand, British pro Bradley Wiggins considers un-retiring.

And a 25-year old Spanish cyclist gets a four year ban for doping with a drug he denies ever taking.

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Local

Venice Blvd now officially belongs to Los Angeles instead of being under the control of Caltrans, after the state pays LA to take it off their hands.

Metro is asking for input on the coming LAX Connector Line, which includes plans for a bike hub to make it easier to ride to the airport.

 

State

An unidentified bike rider was hospitalized with traumatic injuries after he or she was hit by a Garden Grove police officer. Thanks to Steve Herbert for the heads-up.

A Redlands thief plays Mission Impossible by lowering himself through the roof to steal $200 from a bike shop.

It’s been a rough few days in Fresno; just two days after a bike rider was killed in a collision, another rider suffered life-threatening injuries yesterday.

San Jose church members assemble 60 bicycles to donate to local children.

Palo Alto considers budget options for a new bike bridge after rejecting a previous design that came in over budget.

A Santa Rosa letter writer says the anti-bike residents along a local roadway remind him of Deliverance.

 

National

Streetsblog looks at why American trucks are so deadly for bicyclists and pedestrians, after London takes steps to ban dangerous trucks from the roads.

An Oregon TV station asks if it’s time to put bike lanes on a key bridge after a bike rider was killed by a driver with 31 previous traffic convictions. Bike lanes would be a good idea; keeping demonstrably dangerous drivers off the roads would be better.

Authorities say they know who sabotaged a Colorado bike trail, however, no charges have been filed yet in what the BLM calls an isolated incident.

Texas residents worry about property values plummeting if a proposed bike lane gets built. Never mind that bikeways have consistently been shown to increase property values.

A DC bicyclist dodged a bullet — literally — when a road raging driver took a shot at him; his rear bike tire wasn’t so lucky.

I want to be like her when I grow up. A 90-year old Florida woman consistently holds her own on a 31-mile weekly group ride.

 

International

Riding a bicycle just five minutes a day can cut your risk of early death from heart disease. But it won’t get you very far.

Bicycle Times offers a guide to buying a bicycle.

Bike Radar recommends five bike action cams they like, all of which just happen to be made by GoPro or Garmin.

Who couldn’t use a few tips on dating a female competitive cyclist?

Anti-bike terrorists strike again, this time strewing tacks on an Ottawa bike lane.

Bodyguards ban British Foreign Secretary and former London Mayor Boris Johnson from bicycling over fears that riding a bike would make him a target. Just like it does the rest of us.

China’s maintenance-free, dock-less Mobike bikeshare system is expanding to Singapore, which appears to have won that skirmish in China’s bikeshare startup battle.

 

Finally…

Do Angelenos fear Scientology’s bike-riding security guards because they’re Scientologists, or because they’re on bicycles? Your next racing kit could have as much coffee inside as you do.

And it’s not unusual for a drunk driver to flee from the cops after nearly hitting a bike rider. Except when the driver is just 12-years old.

 

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