Tag Archive for California

Bashing Boerner’s ebike safety bill, dismount bikes signs to be removed, and the Biden-Trump bike race we deserve

Just 322 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we face walking and biking on the mean streets of LA.

Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can. Just over 70 signatures to go to reach 1,000!

Photo by Maxfoot from Pixabay.

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Streetsblog’s Melanie Curry responds to Encinitas Assemblymember Tasha Boerner’s bill to ban ebikes for kids under 12, and require a driver’s license or completion of an online training course for anyone else.

E-bike safety is certainly important. Asm. Boener has been working on developing safety training – more on that below – but the idea of requiring licenses for riding a bike introduces a range of problems. There is racial profiling, for one – the people most likely to be pulled over for potential violations of this law are youth of color. Then there’s the whole problem with making the police deal with what is fundamentally a safety issue in the first place. And as the California Bicycle Coalition has pointed out:

“The bicycle is an efficient and essential tool to fight climate change, and e-bikes make bicycling accessible to a wider range of people. E-bike licensing requirements are unlikely to measurably reduce the prevalence of crashes (see below for why), but they will reduce ridership just as California needs to employ every strategy to mitigate the climate crisis.”

Electric bikes can be easier – and faster – than “acoustic” bikes. This brings both benefits and hazards, particularly to inexperienced riders. But the solution is better information and training, not more policing.

Curry also points out that California law already bans anyone under 16 from riding the fastest category of ebikes.

And that the “real and present danger” associated with ebikes is cars, and the people who drive them. Because even the best trained ebike rider is no match for a speeding, overly aggressive or otherwise distracted driver.

Meanwhile, a comment on the Electrek site sums it up pretty well.

Hard disagree with the current iteration of this bill, the way it reads right now its another power move under the guise of “for the safety of children” and an overblown way to solve a problem that affects some cities locally. There’s smarter and more cost effective ways to increase ebike safety rather than making a big conundrum out of it and then finding a new way to ticket people who have been following the law, while people breaking the law will continue to ignore it…

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Credit Streetblog’s Joe Linton with getting Los Angeles and Beverly Hill to remove signs posted near the Purple Line construction zone on Wilshire which tell people to get off their bikes, for no apparent reason.

It’s questionable whether these signs were ever enforceable to begin with, since they don’t conform to the MUTCD, and look more like something a Metro contractor might have ordered off Amazon.

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Daily Kos says forget all this talk about who is “infirm” or “feeble,” or capable of passing a basic cognitive test.

What we really need to settle the issue once and for all is a Biden-Trump bicycle race.

I know who I’d put my money on.

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Bike Portland celebrates the city’s Boom Bike, a human-powered, mobile soundstage.

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GCN explains how to commute on an ebike.

Which is kind of like commuting on any other bike, just less sweaty.

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It’s now 54 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 31 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

Something tells me there’s more to this story, after an alleged hit-and-run driver was charged with first-degree murder for killing a British Columbia bike rider; the suspect is accused of planning or conspiring to murder the victim, as mounties describe the investigation as “sensitive.”

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

An unknown bike rider is the prime suspect after a former British sports commentator found his car slashed by what could have been a bicycle pedal.

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Local 

Los Angeles now has a bicycle-based mobile espresso bar serving Westside communities with beans exclusively sourced from West African farms.

Politico looks at the bad blood delaying Lyft’s takeover of behind-the-scenes operations for LA’s Metro Bike bikeshare program, as political and labor leaders decry awarding “hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer funds to a company that is car-centric and anti-union.”

Torrance is moving towards approval of a proposed multi-use trail linking the city’s new regional transit center with its downtown district.

Long Beach says not so fast to California’s new intersection daylighting law.

 

State

Instead of succumbing to the ebike panic plaguing SoCal’s beach cities, Newport Beach has taken a more rational approach by launching a new webpage devoted to ebike and traffic safety.

Bad news from San Diego, where a 63-year old man suffered severe injuries when he was right hooked by a 33-year old woman while riding in a Carmel Valley bike lane; fortunately, his injuries were not considered life-threatening.

More bad news from San Diego, as a man in his 70s suffered injuries to his head and legs when he was struck by one of the city’s downtown trolleys while riding his bike.

Sad news from Fresno, where a 33-year old man died after he was struck by a driver while riding his bike just doors from his home.

 

National

Velo talks with PeopleForBikes about the five principles required for the year’s best US bicycling infrastructure.

Five years after launching it with much fanfare, PeopleForBikes will shut down their Ride Spot mobile app at the end of this month, after deciding the resources could be better spent in other areas. Which is just business speak for it flopped. 

Bicycling offers their picks for the best President’s Day deals on bike gear. This one doesn’t appear to be available anywhere else, but it also doesn’t seem to be hidden behind the magazine’s paywall. 

Cycling Weekly advises doubling up on bike locks to make your bike less inviting to thieves as bike theft rates rise.

Good question. The Good Men Project says public health and urban planning go hand-in-hand, so why aren’t we doing more to promote bicycling? Actually, that’s easy. It’s because we care more about allowing drivers to go zoom zoom than we do about keeping people healthy.

In a complicated story, the owners of a Houston bike shop got a classic 1950s Columbia bike back after a photographer they loaned it to never returned it; a year later, a friend found it for sale after someone discovered it on the street when the photographer was evicted for nonpayment of rent.

 

International

Momentum makes the case for why building bike lanes is good for more than just people who ride bikes.

Ebike conversion kit maker Swytch recommends the most romantic cities for bike-riding couples to spend quality time together. That none of them one is Los Angeles should go without saying.

Virgin owner Richard Branson once again suffers “nasty” injuries falling off his bicycle, this time after hitting a pothole in the British Virgin Islands.

Toronto bicyclists celebrate riding on the coldest day of the year, on one of the warmest days of the winter.

Um, no. A Manchester, England website explains how the city became the European capital of bicycling. Which will likely come as a big surprise to Amsterdam and Copenhagen, not to mention Paris and Barcelona.

A British community learns the hard way that the equivalent of $17 million won’t even buy a straight bike lane anymore.

The consumer standards regulator for the Netherlands is investigating a cargo bikemaker, after complaints of broken frames on fragile Babboe bakfiets.

 

Competitive Cycling

That feeling when a bike race fan does a face plant trying to keep up with a cyclist in the Tour Columbia.

 

Finally…

Presenting a crossdressing bike ride that could be banned in some red states. When you’re riding your bike at 1 am with illegal drugs, a fake handgun, knife, pepper spray and a half-dozen outstanding warrants, don’t ride salmon without lights on the damn thing,

And that feeling when a magazine thinks every bicyclist needs a new Pinarello — and a balance bike.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Riding a bike to cure Blue Monday, results from LA’s Universal Basic Mobility pilot, and we’re #1 in hit-and-run

If you haven’t already, stop what you’re doing and sign this petition demanding a public meeting with LA Mayor Karen Bass to listen to the dangers we face just walking and biking on the streets of LA.

Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can.

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Today is officially Blue Monday, a term coined by a British shrink to mark the “convergence of post-holiday blues, cold weather, and the realization that New Year’s resolutions might be more challenging than anticipated,” that accumulate around the third Monday in January.

But Momentum argues that riding a bicycle is the perfect way to beat the blues.

And forget the Prozac. A new study from the University of Edinburgh found that commuting by bicycle can improve mental health, and that people who bike to work are less likely to be prescribed antidepressants.

Photo by Burst from Pexels.

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Next City reports the results are in from the nation’s largest Universal Basic Mobility experiment.

LADOT and LA Metro teamed to give a “mobility wallet” to 1,000 lower-income South Los Angeles residents — a reloadable debit card providing $150 per month to spend on almost any form of transportation.

The key word is “almost.”

The catch? Funds can be used to take the bus, ride the train, rent a shared e-scooter, take micro-transit, rent a car-share, take an Uber or Lyft, or even purchase an e-bike — but they can’t be spent on the cost of owning or operating a car.

After the first six months of the one-year program, which ends in April, the biggest surprise has been the reliance on ride-hailing services.

According to data from the first six months of the program, the majority of estimated trips taken have been on public transportation (40,087 trips out of 67,379). The majority of the funds (about $500,000) have gone to ride-hailing or taxi services like Uber and Lyft, for about 26,000 trips at an average cost of $20.

You could buy a pretty nice bicycle for $1,800 for the full year.

But then you’d have to find a safe place to ride it, which isn’t always easy in Los Angeles. Especially in South LA.

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We’re number one!

Which should make us all feel like number two.

According to a study by Personal Injury Law Firm Suzuki Law Offices, California leads the nation for the rate of hit-and-run collisions in the state, with drivers fleeing in nearly 10.5% of crashes, compared to a national average of 6.3%.

Although seems low, given that other sources say nearly half of all crashes here in Los Angeles are hit-and-runs.

Either way, it’s too damn high. And long past time state officials actally did something about it.

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LA traffic safety organizations Streets Are For Everyone, Streets For All, Street Racing Kills and Santa Monica Spoke are teaming up for another die-in on the steps of Los Angeles City Hall on Saturday, January 27th to protest the ever-rising rate of traffic deaths in the City of Angels.

I won’t be able to make it this time due to yet another medical appointment, as my doctors work to keep my own body from trying to kill me.

So make plans to be there in my place, and demand that city officials hear us and actually do something to halt traffic violence, instead of the usual endless talks and studies.

Or just ignoring the problem, which is what they do best.

Along with the die-in, supporting the Healthy Streets LA ballot initiative in the March 5th election is a good place to start.

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I want to be like him when I grow up.

A short documentary from a professional filmmaker looks at his 90-year old grandfather, who still finds joy in riding a bicycle.

Then again, what’s not to love?

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26 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 30 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law, and counting.

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

Men’s Journal blamed ebike battery fires for being a leading cause of death in New York City. They only missed the mark by a factor of 1,000.

A road raging London driver was taken away in handcuffs following an escalating dispute that ended with him knocking another man off his bicycle, throwing his bike away, and running over a passing bike rider who stopped to help.

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

Miami’s annual Wheels Up, Guns Down bike ride once again took over the streets of the city, but what originally began as a ride to end gun violence once again devolved into a two-wheeled street takeover, with teenaged bicyclists, as well as dirt bike and ATV riders, performing stunts in traffic and raiding convenience stores; police made over 100 arrests.

Four English bike riders were fined after police in Surrey stopped a group ride for running a red light, and posted video of it online.

A British teenager faces charges of causing grievous bodily harm and possession of an offensive weapon — the ebike he was riding when he crashed into a cop, seriously injuring the officer.

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Local 

The Los Angeles Times says don’t bet on AI reducing traffic congestion on California roads, despite Caltrans request for Artificial Intelligence companies to pitch AI products to cut congestion and improve safety, noting that nothing short of a global pandemic has had an effect on our traffic. So maybe the solution is providing safe and efficient alternatives to driving, instead.

Streetsblog looks at Safe Routes to School improvements in Koreatown.

 

State

No bias here. A new state report shows California cops stop Black drivers a whopping 132% more than expected, based on a comparison of stop data and residential population.

A writer for the Orange County Register says the climate was the big loser in Gavin Newsom’s new state budget.

Bad news from Ukiah, where a 75-year old man died after falling off his bicycle.

 

National

Velo argues both sides of the issue when it comes to vehicle warning lights to prevent doorings, suggesting they’re useful, but encouraging drivers to use the Dutch Reach by opening doors with their right hand is better.

Momentum talks with the founder of Black Girls Do Bike about the organization’s remarkable growth.

A new anti-theft light uses Apple’s Find My tech to locate your bike anywhere in the world. Which is great if a thief can’t simply remove it from your handlebars.

Seattle Transit Blog says building bike lanes is a good idea, but not if they’ll prevent future bus lanes.

While we continue to wait for California’s moribund ebike voucher program to launch, the small southwestern Colorado town of Durango is tripling the funding for its ebike voucher program, with $150,000 earmarked for the town of less than 20,000 people.

A DC food delivery rider keeps smiling, despite working 17 hour days with his foot in a surgical boot after he was struck by a car in September.

 

International

A new device from Red Bull can turn your bike into an ebike in mere seconds — the second time you use it, anyway.

Talk about bike riders behaving badly. A 43-year old man executed in front of his wife and toddler son as they returned home from a Brazilian bike ride turned out to be a notorious Serbian hit man who’s been on the run from Interpol for the last decade. Thanks to Steven Hallett for the link.

A new study suggests that Toronto police data captures only a small fraction of bicycling injuries, with police reports registering only eight percent of bicycling injuries compared to hospital and ER records over a five year period. The same would probably hold true for any large city, Los Angeles included.

I want to ne like her when I grow up, too. A Toronto woman is still riding at 77, after 56 years on a bike; despite the toll of age and a recent injury, she still feels more comfortable riding a bicycle in rush hour traffic than walking or driving.

Canadians are ditching their cars for bicycles, even in the cold of winter. Yet we’re somehow supposed to believe that Angelenos won’t bike to work in our much balmier climate.

A Scottish BBC presenter says he’s not afraid of dying, after doctors discovered an incurable brain tumor following a fall off his bicycle.

Serious bicycling injuries and deaths have jumped by a third in London over the past five years, far outpacing the 14% growth in bicycling rates over the same period, despite the city’s investment in protected bikeways and slow streets.

A writer for London’s Guardian asks whether tech giant Lime’s ubiquitous dockless bikeshare bikes and e-scooters are a “convenient and sustainable form of transport or a menace clogging up pavements.”

Speaking of Lime bikes, a defender for London’s Fulham soccer team was spotted riding one home following a loss to Chelsea, forgoing the usual luxury car.

An estimated 500 people biked through the streets of London to mark the 100th day since the October 7 Hamas attacks in Israel, including one man whose son died in the attack. Meanwhile, an Australian ride was marred by genocide graffiti sprayed on the wall of a Jewish community center. We’ll have photos from the Santa Monica ride later this week.

The Guardian remembers London’s Lycra lads circa 1987, bike messengers who “were fast, brightly dressed, sometimes earned decent money and rarely obeyed the Highway Code.”

That feeling when Pinarello’s “Fast and Furious new colorways,” aren’t.

Czech carmaker Škoda’s We Love Cycling website looks forward to eight women’s only bicycling events.

A 22-year old man in India built his own DIY solar powered ebike that seats up to seven people, for the equivalent of just $100.

A new study in the prestigious British Medical Journal shows Australian bicycling deaths have declined an average of 1.1% annually over the past 30 years — except for people over 60, who now make up 50% of all bicycling deaths. The authors suggest greater fragility among older riders, though the answer could be as simple as more older bike riders on the roads. 

 

Competitive Cycling

L39ION of Los Angeles unveiled its new team roster for the coming season, as co-founder Cory Williams and several team veterans move to Florida to compete for the Miami Blazers cycling team.

 

Finally…

Who needs a mere bicycle when you can pedal your very own velomobile? That feeling when you can’t tell if it’s a bike path or a slalom course.

And your next ebike could tell you where to go.

And how to get there.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

LA & Metro failure to launch in 2023, CicLAvia opens 2024 on Melrose, and CA bike riders can now use early ped signals

We have another late donation to last month’s 9th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to Ralph D for his generous support to keep SoCal’s best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

Even though the fund drive is officially over, donations of any amount or reason are always welcome and appreciated.

Even if you just to help keep the corgi in kibble. 

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If you haven’t already, stop what you’re doing and sign the petition demanding a public meeting with LA Mayor Karen Bass to listen to the dangers we face just walking and biking on the streets of LA.

Then share the petition — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can.

A similar Bike Forum back when Antonio Villaraigosa was mayor of Los Angeles resulted in real change on the streets, as well as in how we were treated by the LAPD. All of which lasted right up until Eric Garcetti became mayor.

So after ten years of being ignored, we need to make the mayor hear us. Because as important as her efforts are to house the homeless, they’re not the only ones in danger on our streets.

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Today’s must-read comes, as it so often does, from Streetsblog’s Joe Linton.

Linton offers a recap of projects Metro and Los Angeles just didn’t get around to last year, which range from the resident-designed Complete Streets makeover of Colorado Blvd through Eagle Rock — which was delayed by a NIMBY lawsuit that was just tossed by the judge — to the failure to break ground on extending the LA River bike path through Vernon and DTLA.

Which means the latter could miss Garcetti’s promise to have it ready for the 2028 LA Olympics.

But he’s in India now, serving as US ambassador, so no one in city government or at Metro really gives a damn what he promised anymore.

In addition, Linton writes about the LA City Council’s failure to follow through on a motion to halt harmful road widening in the city, which passed the council with unanimous support early last year.

Then…nothing. City staff were supposed to write the text of the new law, and bring it back to the council within 60 days.

We’re still waiting.

Or they may not be, since Mike Bonin, the author of the motion, left the City Council to focus on his family in the face of withering abuse.

Maybe they’re hoping they can just sweep it under the rug and forget all about it, which seems to happen all too often these days.

Case in point, the City Council’s version of the Healthy Streets Los Angeles ballot measure, which they promised would be even better than the original created by LA transportation PAC Streets For All.

As Linton explains,

For a year, nothing happened on Safe Streets. (In fact, several city departments did the opposite, going on the offensive to undermine the legitimacy of the city’s own Mobility Plan.)

In August 2023, city staff posted a weakened, problematic draft ordinance (read Streets for All’s critique). The council never scheduled any public hearing which could have received public input and maybe fixed problems, thus strengthening the draft ordinance.

What seemed like the council’s urgent attempt to advance equity and safer streets turned out to be vaporware at best – or deception designed to split advocates at worst.

Now it’s 2024. In just two months, L.A. City voters will decide Measure HLA in the March 5 election. City departments are continuing their push to undermine Measure HLA, the Mobility Plan, and walking, bicycling, and transit in general (see for example Little Tokyo above).

Despite those efforts, Measure HLA continues to gain momentum, picking up endorsements, raising funds, and recruiting volunteers. Get involved via the campaign website.

There seems to be a lot of that kind of chicanery on Linton’s list, as city and Metro staff seem determined to slow walk and undermine desperately needed projects at every turn.

Not to mention a “pernicious double standard.”

The above list points to a pernicious double standard at Metro (one that SBLA has pointed out before). When it comes to freeway expansion, Metro staff and board are quick to insist that “we have to do this because it’s what the voters approved.” When it comes to transit (operations and capital), BRT, bike paths, etc., Metro is fine with delays, years of meetings, and scaling back and canceling projects – whether the voters like it or not.

If only Metro would act with the same urgency on equitable healthy modes – as it does for highway widening – but don’t hold your breath.

If I held my breath waiting for LA and Metro to act, I would have died of asphyxiation years ago.

And I’m not about to start now.

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The 2024 CicLAvia season opens next month with what should be a classic — four miles straight down iconic, countercultural and increasingly bougie Melrose Avenue.

Which was due for a much-needed Compete Streets makeover until former CD4 Councilmember Paul Koretz unilaterally cancelled it.

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Bike writer Peter Flax reminds us that as of this past Monday, you can legally ride your bike through an intersection on the leading pedestrian interval — that brief moment when the walk signal appears a few seconds before the light turns green for everyone else.

Although you might want to keep a copy of the law with you, because some cops may miss the memo.

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This is exactly what I mean when I say today’s massively oversized pickups and SUVs, with their high, flat grills, are designed to kill.

Unfortunately, the study doesn’t seem to be available in English yet.

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15 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 30 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law, and counting.

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

No bias here. A San Antonio, Texas TV station says police are looking for a bicyclist with a knife who stabbed an acquaintance after a squabble. Not, say, a knifesman or stabber who rides a bicycle.

No bias here, either. A British bike rider appears to speed up to avoid getting right hooked by a large truck turning across a protected bike lane. So people naturally blame the guy on two wheels, accusing him of “racing” the truck.

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Local 

The CHP and LA County Sheriff’s Department are finally targeting speeding drivers on deadly PCH, where four Pepperdine students were recently killed by a driver doing up to 105 mph on the highway that serves as Malibu’s Main Street.

Santa Monica police will conduct another Bike & Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operation today, ticketing any violation that could endanger bike riders or pedestrians — even if it’s a bike rider or pedestrian who commits it. The usual protocol applies, ride to the letter of the law today until you pass the city limit sign so you’re not the one who gets ticketed. 

 

State

Orange County’s “Ebike Lady” volunteers her time to teach new ebike-owning kids how to stay safe on the roads.

Bakersfield news media are still talking about the bike rideout that devolved into hooliganism last month, even though it’s been over a month. Apparently, they don’t get much excitement up there. 

Evidently, business owners and drivers aren’t the only ones who hate San Francisco’s new Valencia Street centerline bike lane, with bike ridership dropping — not rising — 50% since it was installed last April.

The Sacramento DA reportedly told the victim’s family that the kid who fatally shot a ten-year old boy with his father’s stolen gun last week won’t face any charges, saying the sole criminal responsibility lies with the father, who was prohibited from owning a gun as a convicted felon; his son reportedly shot the other boy after becoming angry over losing a bike race.

 

National

New graphene-based battery cells promise to end lithium-ion ebike battery fires.

A new study from Spin says improving bike networks could be the best way to keep e-scooter riders off sidewalks.

Spokane, Washington is considering a proposal to buy a “transformative” half-million dollar snow plow to clear protected bike lanes this winter.

Colorado has suspended applications for its ebike rebate program after running out of money due to unexpectedly high demand. Meanwhile, California’s seemingly moribund ebike incentive program still hasn’t paid out a dime, despite receiving an additional $18 million in funding.

Ohio bike lawyer Steve Magas, co-author of the classic book Bicycling and the Law, offers a neighboring state’s legal perspective on the Illinois Supreme Court’s bizarre ruling that bicyclists are merely permitted guests on most roadways. Meanwhile, a writer for a legal site blames Chance the Rapper.

A Nashville writer calls the city’s new mayor a “trusted advocate for the cycling community, yearning for safer, more accessible streets.” Although any Angeleno bicyclist suffering from hard-won cynicism might tell them to believe budgets, not promises. 

A Charleston, West Virginia columnist calls on the city to make the streets safer, over two years after he went over his handlebars trying to avoid a right hook.

Florida’s Delray Beach unveils a new bike and pedestrian plan including over 52 miles of new bike lanes, although the hefty $100 million price tag suggests much of it may be wishful thinking.

No surprise here, as Florida once again leads the nation in bicycling deaths and injuries, with an average of 18 bicyclists injured in crashes every day.

 

International

Momentum says the “humble” bicycle offers the perfect way to overcome sedentary lifestyles and desk-bound routines to improve health as we start the new year.

Cycling Weekly says Strava data shows a 55% increase in gravel cycling over the past year, because “people aren’t as snooty or uptight,” according to one gravel convert.

Scotland has finally gotten around to banning the common British practice of parking on the sidewalk, though Edinburgh is one of the first cities to announce plans to actually enforce it.

He gets it. A Pudsey, England letter writer tells motorists to “See other road users as human beings — mothers, fathers, daughters, sons — not as obstacles.”

British bike riders bemoan flooded bikeways, and the country’s lack of response.

A divisional commissioner in Lahore, Pakistan called a special meeting to promote “cycling culture,” promising it would create business opportunities as well as a healthy urban environment.

 

Competitive Cycling

F1 Alpha Romeo driver Valtteri Bottas says he’s serious about gravel racing, after twice standing on the podium at Steamboat Springs, Colorado’s world-class SBT GRVL race, and creating one of his own.

Matthew van der Poel was fined 250 euros — the equivalent of $274 — for spitting at a group of unruly gravel fans he said were tossing beer and urine at him every time he rounded last weekend’s gravel course. Although to be fair, sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between the two. 

Cyclist offers five key storylines for the upcoming women’s pro cycling season.

 

Finally…

That feeling when your new lakeshore bike trail is a trial. When you’re riding a bike with outstanding warrants for car theft, try not to ride suspiciously.

And you clearly don’t want to mess with singer Elle Cordova, aka Reina del Cid.

Or her bike tubes, for that matter.

Thanks to David Wolfberg for the heads-up.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Aussie prof killed in Marina bike crash, protected bike lane mandate pays off, and CA has to walk the walk on emissions

Just 12 days left in the 9th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to Erik B, Lisa G, Samer S, Erik G and Gold Leaf Films for their generous support to help keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

Don’t wait. Give now!

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Days left to launch the California ebike incentive program as promised this fall: 9

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I’m gutted.

Yesterday we shared a photo depicting the aftermath of a Friday bike crash in Marina del Rey, which I later learned was taken by Ian Dutton.

Then last night I came across a story from an Australian news site reporting that a beloved college teacher had been killed riding along an unidentified California beach.

And later still, I saw a comment from Libby Starling, who identified herself as the victim’s sister-in-law, reporting that the victim in the Marina crash, Manhattan Beach resident Leland Dutcher, didn’t make it.

Yet I somehow failed to initially make the connection that it was the same person.

Somehow, posting that photo makes it feel personal to me, perhaps because I inherited my dad’s extra empathy gene.

I keep telling myself that it’s not about me.

What I do is about serving the victims of these crashes, and their families, and the greater bicycling community.

But it hurts, damn it.

It hurts.

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We’ve linked to a number of stories about the bikelash in Cambridge, Massachusetts recently, where some drivers are up in arms over the profusion of new bike lanes on city streets.

But according to Velo, a new report from city officials shows the city’s first-in-the-nation mandate to building protected bike lanes has been an overwhelming success.

According to the report, since the policy was implemented four years ago,

  • 80 percent more protected bike lanes from cars than in 2004.
  • 9 percent of Cambridge residents bike to work, and 37 percent of residents walk or bike.
  • 25 percent of people visiting the business district arrive by bicycle.
  • 34 percent more people commute by bike since 2019, while 15 percent more people commute via sidewalks since 2019.
  • The number of children on bikes, in trailers, or cargo bikes has increased by 3.5 times.
  • Up to 80 percent fewer cyclists ride on sidewalks, resulting in fewer accidents between pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Bike lanes in the area have cut accidents between bikes and cars by 50 percent since 2012.
  • The proportion of crashes that did not result in injury is three times lower now than it was from 2004 to 2012. Incapacitating injuries are down by 84 percent in the same time frame.

All of which sounds like a pretty convincing argument to keep building them there.

And here.

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They get it.

Planetizen says California has to walk the walk when it comes to reducing transportation emissions.

Because while the state is great at setting Complete Streets and climate change policies, it continues to waste billions on traffic and emission inducing highway projects.

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LA in a Minute examines why white plastic bollards are popping up all over Los Angeles.

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The mayor of Escondido has declared war on bike lanes, introducing an ordinance to prohibit future bike and transit improvements in the city.

https://twitter.com/TallDarknJewish/status/1734313400409415951

 

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Well, of course he was one of us.

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Megan Lynch forwards video of George Clooney and Jimmie Kimmel discussing what kids wanted from a bike back in the day.

………

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

No bias here. Bay Area bike advocates were justifiably up in arms over a story from the San Francisco Standard we linked to yesterday, which trotted out the usual bike-hating bile, including “People hate bike lanes, at least in part, because people hate cyclists. And in fairness, many cyclists give non-cyclists more than a few things to hate.” Because we all know all drivers operate their vehicles perfectly, and never, ever do anything that would give bike riders or pedestrians something to hate.

New York’s bike-hating, rightwing councilwoman demonstrates how to say you have no idea what you’re talking about without saying you have no idea what you’re talking about, while somehow assuming we’re all a group of millionaire cultists.

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

Bakersfield police arrested 12 people riding bicycles, 11 of them juveniles, for an undisclosed incident that happened at the city’s Valley Plaza Mall; a police sergeant said the group, which was organized through social media, was “causing road hazards, and not following the rules of the road.” Except that sounds more like a traffic violation, rather than a crime subject to arrest. And full disclosure, I used to write advertising for that mall. 

A bike-riding Massachusetts man faces an animal cruelty charge for allegedly beating a dog and knocking its 69-year old owner to the ground, after using his bike to separate his two dogs from the victim’s dog when they got into a fight. Using his bike to separate them was smart; beating the other dog afterwards, not so much. Or forgivable. 

………

………

Local 

No news is good news, right? 

 

State

Encinitas is responding to the death of a 15-year old ebike rider in June by considering a slate of bike and pedestrian safety improvements on city streets, including left turn bike boxes.

San Diego adopted a new Complete Streets policy aimed at making local streets safer and more equitable. But as we’ve seen in Los Angeles, a policy without an enforcement mechanism can be pretty useless.

A Santa Barbara writer tries to explain what’s going on with the traffic diverters on Sola Street, as the city attempts to create a crosstown bikeway without removing parking spaces to install a bike lane.

Kindhearted Clovis, California cops bought a new bike for a local teenager after someone stole his locked bike while he was at school.

A nearly $125,000 bequest from the man known as the Legend of Mt. Diablo for his daily rides up the Bay Area climb is helping to fund a campaign to build safety turnouts on his favorite ride, two years after he was killed by a driver while riding his bike.

 

National

The New York Times examines the rise in pedestrian deaths, blaming distracted drivers and a lack of safe sidewalks, while too easily discounting the deadly design of SUVs.

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss says most bike reviews are useless, so just get out there and ride them yourself.

Clean Technica says ebikes are radically more efficient than electric cars, while a writer for Electrek relates the lessons his wife learned from her first 100 miles commuting to work by ebike.

Oregon will now allow drivers to pass bike riding “obstructions” in No Passing Zones, as long as the person on the bicycle is riding at less than half the posted speed limit.

Great idea. The Iowa Bicycle Coalition is visiting nearly 100 bike shops across the state to kick off their “support your local bike shop week.” Because if we don’t support them, they may not be there when you need them.

Kindhearted cops in Boston replaced a nine-year old boy’s bicycle after someone stole his bike from his backyard.

Sad news from Syracuse NY, where a man riding a bikeshare ebike was killed when a cop somehow turned his patrol car into him; the officer is now on administrative leave while the crash is investigated.

Tragic news from North Carolina, where a man was killed by a drunk driver while riding his bicycle, just hours after his father was killed in a collision, leaving their family to plan two funerals.

‘Tis the Season. Nearly 100 volunteer “elves” refurbished nearly 530 donated bicycles for a Georgia charity to give to local kids in need.

 

International

Momentum says the Dutch Reach is the simple solution to help stop dooring incidents. The only problem is actually getting drivers and passengers to use it. 

A British motorcyclist got three and a half years behind bars for crashing into a bike-riding woman while riding stoned, without a license or insurance, and with fake plates on his motorcycle; the victim ended up having her leg amputated.

The UK’s largest chain of bike shops is ridiculed for building bikes wrong, putting on all the right parts, “but not necessarily in the right places.”

The Jerusalem Post recommends the best helmets for your bicycle or motorbike riding dog — including a hard shell propeller beanie.

 

Competitive Cycling

Fox News continues its war on trans cyclists, quoting commentator Riley Gaines condemning a third place finisher as a “traitor to women” after she came to the defense of the trans women who finished ahead of her.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can build your very own wireless bike brakes. Your next ebike could be a…Cervélo?

And nothing like finding a useless bike rack at the end of your ride.

………

Chag sameach!

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Newsom approves limited speed cam pilot, Israeli bicyclists victims of Hamas violence, and DOJ sues eBay for rolling coal

Newsom signed this one, anyway.

LAist reports speed cams could be coming to Los Angeles, Long Beach and Glendale after Governor Newsom signed a bill authorizing a pilot program in the three cities, as well as three cities in Northern California.

However, the program will be limited to streets in “school zones, highway segments most prone to injuries, and areas identified by local authorities as having high volumes of speeders and street racing.”

The pilot program continues California’s insistence on reinventing the wheel, since speed cams have already proven successful in 200 communities in 21 other states, including New York City, Chicago and DC.

……..

You knew the recent Hamas massacre in Israel wouldn’t spare the bicycling community.

According to Marca, the heartless violence took the lives of an entire family of triathletes, and at least four mountain bikers were killed on their way to a training ride.

Another group of bike riders survived by hiding under bushes for hours to escape the attack.

……..

Yes, please.

The US Department of Justice is suing eBay for selling more than 343,000 illegal “rolling coal” pollution devices through the platform, illegally enabling drivers to modify emissions controls on their cars and trucks — and bury bike riders and pedestrians in a cloud of exhaust smoke.

The platform could face a well-deserved $5,580 fine for each devise sold under the Clean Air Act, for a total of nearly $2 billion.

………

This is the future bike riders want.

Meanwhile, as today’s top photo demonstrates, the countless full bike racks at Sunday’s CicLAvia offered more proof that bikes mean business, with bars, restaurants and cafes jammed with happy participants.

Along with more than a few corgis.

And this one definitely won the most creative award at Sunday’s Heart of LA CicLAvia.

Although the LAPD responded to the end of Sunday’s CicLAvia with an illegal order telling bike riders to get off the street.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

………

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

No bias here. A former British city counselor accused local advocates of planning a “deeply distasteful” protest ride to demand safe streets in the wake of two recent bicycling deaths, saying it would put people off bicycling.

No bias here, either. Business owners in a UK city protested what they called a “totally crazy, ridiculous” plan to remove a whole two — yes, two — parking spaces to make room for eight bikeshare bikes.

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

A 73-year old man in the UK walked without a day in jail for crashing his bicycle into a pedestrian, leaving the 88-year old victim fighting for his life; the man thought he could ride safely even though he was left partially sighted after a stroke.

………

Local 

This is who we share the road with. A Long Beach driver killed one woman and injured six other people when he drove into pedestrians and cars at Shoreline Drive and Aquarium Way Saturday evening.

 

State

An Orange County man was busted after completing a transportation theft trifecta, first stealing a car, followed by a bicycle, before being arrested while wearing the car owner’s shoes.

A Victorville woman was critically injured when her bicycle was struck by a motorcyclist while crossing a busy roadway Friday afternoon.

UC Santa Barbara Police recovered 18 purloined bicycles after busting an accused prolific bike thief.

A Bakersfield man suffered major injuries when he was struck by a hit-and-run driver while riding his bike, and left lying in the roadway Saturday evening.

Sad news from San Francisco, where bicyclist was killed in a collision while riding on a freeway; no word on why the rider was on the Interstate highway.

 

National

CleanTechnica calls ebikes a less-polluting option for commutes and errands as part of the new normal, while Momentum offers advice on what you need to know before buying one.

Gravel has officially gone mainstream, as CNN rates the year’s 12 best gravel bikes.

Gear Junkie offers tips on selecting the right bicycle helmet for the way you ride.

Hundreds of Las Vegas bicyclists turned out for the 10th Annual Ride to Remember, in honor of bike racer Pete Makowski, who was killed by a gravel truck driver while on a training ride in 2013, and all bike-riding victims of traffic violence.

Kindhearted Tucson, Arizona volunteers put together 1,200 bikes to donate to underserved kids.

A new Denver program is using heart rate data to identify bicycling danger zones before anyone gets hurt.

Life is cheap is Wisconsin, where a woman got just 18 months behind bars for killing a 29-year old man riding a bicycle, while driving at nearly twice the legal alcohol limit and nearly twice the posted speed limit.

Cincinnati Bengals punter Drue Christian stayed in shape by delivering meals for DoorDash on his bicycle during the off-season, then started buying meals himself and giving them to people in need.

Family members continue to call for justice two years after Pittsburgh police tased a homeless man up to ten times, even though he didn’t pose a threat to them or anyone else, just because he rode a bicycle that appeared to be abandoned around the block before returning it; the city has already paid an $8 million settlement in the case, but no officers have been charged in his death.

A South Carolina letter writer has a complaint bike riders everywhere can relate to, asking people to stop leaving yard waste and other trash in bike lanes.

 

International

Major bicycling brands, including Schwalbe, Rudy Project and Trek, are becoming more environmentally conscious and reducing their carbon footprint.

A Vancouver nonprofit calculates that switching from a car to a bicycle could save commuters over $9,000 a year.

Yes, please. A new Google Maps feature will allow London bike riders to consider current traffic conditions and the availability of high-quality cycling infrastructure in planning their route. Hopefully, that will roll out here in the US if it proves successful there. 

The Daily Mail complains that a Scottish ebike loan program has cost the country the equivalent of over $600,000, as people have purchased ebikes but failed to repay the cost.

A pair of British bike riders were the victims of a bikejacking by moped-riding muggers, who pulled up to them at a red light and ordered them off their bicycles.

A British man’s beloved bicycle was stolen outside his local pub, after it had taken him 22,500 miles around the world in just 430 days.

A Kenyon writer says it’s imperative that the country combine high-capacity buses and bicycling to “significantly reduce urban carbon emissions and foster cleaner, healthier cities for all.”

Police in South Australia said they have arrested the state’s infamous “Bicycle Bandit,” after DNA led them to a 73-year old man who allegedly robbed at least ten banks over a ten-year period beginning in 2004, using a bicycle as his primary getaway vehicle.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dutch pro Milan Vader won his first WorldTour race at China’s Tour of Guangxi, a year after a bad crash during a Basque Country race last year left him in an induced coma with his spine fractured in eleven places, and doubts of ever riding again.

French cyclist Typhaine Laurance is walking away from pro cycling, retiring at just 25 due to the sports low pay; she was forced to continue living with her parents while earning the equivalent of just over $1,000 a month.

Conservative media was up in arms after two transgender cyclists took home gold and silver at a women’s ‘cross race in Chicago.

 

Finally…

Sometimes the best approach to slowing drivers is a mangled bike and a pair of legs sticking out of the hedge. Apparently, bike shorts aren’t used for bicycling anymore, even though they still are, except when they’re not.

And just blame Google Maps if you end up riding on a highway where bikes are banned.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Newsom’s veto could mean tickets for seeking sidewalk safety, and LA Times calls out California’s roadway climate fail

No surprise here.

Both Calbike and CABO responded to Governor Gavin Newsom’s veto of a bill that would have legalized sidewalk riding on any street without adequate bike lanes.

And needless to say, they came out on opposite sides of the issue.

Calbike, aka the California Bicycle Coalition, decried the veto, arguing that sidewalk riding may not be the best choice, but it’s sometimes the only safe one.

“Is sidewalk riding ideal? No,” said Jared Sanchez, policy director for CalBike. “In a perfect world, most streets would be Complete Streets, with safe facilities for all modes of transportation. But that’s not the reality today, and it will take years to transform every dangerous roadway in California into a safe route for biking. In the meantime, people on bikes must, at times, travel on streets with fast traffic and no bike lanes. By vetoing this bill, the governor has taken an action that will lead to more deaths and injuries of people on bikes.”

While CalBike agrees with the governor’s assertion in his veto statement that building better bike infrastructure is the best way to provide safe spaces for people who ride bikes and that the state has moved in the right direction to create more protected and connected bikeways, infrastructure for safe biking remains woefully inadequate.

Meanwhile CABO — the California Association of Bicycle Organizations — applauded the governor’s veto.

An open letter from Alan Wachtel, Government Relations Director for CABO, pointed out the dangers of bicycling on sidewalks, both for bike riders and pedestrians.

While my organization and I appreciate the author’s intent to improve bicycle safety, this bill would instead have exactly the opposite effect. It would encourage dangerous bicycling habits, and it would constitute a huge step backward in the goal of routinely accommodating bicycle travel everywhere in the transportation network. Unfortunately, the author’s office has repeatedly declined to meet with us even to discuss these issues.

Under existing Vehicle Code §21650(g) (which I helped to draft), bicyclists may already ride on sidewalks everywhere, unless prohibited by the code or local ordinance. AB 825 would eliminate that local power unless the adjacent roadway includes a designated bicycle facility, except for last-minute amendments that provide complicated exceptions meant to protect pedestrians (but that are inadequate to do so).

But AB 825, despite being promoted as a bicycle safety bill, would, on the contrary, also be more dangerous for bicyclists. It relies on and actively perpetuates the misconception that the only safe places for bicycles are designated facilities and sidewalks.

This may be the rare instance where they’re both at least partly right.

CABO is correct that bikes don’t normally belong on sidewalks, where they pose a danger to pedestrians and an increased risk to bike riders, despite the perception of safety.

But it’s also true that a sidewalk can provide a refuge from dangerous roadways lacking safe infrastructure — especially the typical suburban California stroads, where riders often have to contend with speeding drivers exceeding the already high speed limits.

It’s also demanding too much to expect an inexperienced bike rider to take the lane on a busy street filled with impatient and distracted drivers.

It’s unreasonable to ticket someone for putting their own safety ahead of any local restrictions under those, or similar, circumstances.

Or to expect someone on a bicycle to always know when they’ve crossed from one city where sidewalk riding is allowed, to another where it’s prohibited, particularly when the restriction isn’t posted.

Then there’s the problem the bill was originally drafted to address, where police too often use sidewalk riding restrictions as a pretext to stop and search, or merely harass, people of color.

I always encourage people to ride their bikes in the street, both for their own safety, and that of people walking on the sidewalk.

But I understand if they choose not to, as I have myself for short distances, or when faced with dangerous situations on the street.

And penalizing them for making that choice is wrong — as was Newsom’s veto of the bill.

Besides, we all know sidewalks are really just parking spots for entitled drivers.

……..

The get it.

An editorial from the Los Angeles Times called out California’s transportation policies, arguing that the state’s highway spending doesn’t match it’s climate promises.

Then again, that’s what we’ve come to expect from the auto-centric Caltrans, despite its repeated commitments to Complete Streets and active transportation.

Two recent reports highlight the discrepancy. Regulators have warned that the state needs to slash the amount of miles people drive 25% below 2019 levels to help meet 2030 emission reduction targets. But traffic and car dependence has increased in recent years, according to a report from the progressive advocacy group NextGen Policy.

It’s no surprise why: California continues to spend the bulk of its transportation dollars to maintain and expand car-centric roads and freeways. Instead of doubling down on the existing system that makes it inconvenient and unsafe to travel by bike, foot and transit, California should be spending the bulk of its transportation funding to remake the urban landscape so people have real choices in how they get around.

But that’s not happening. Of the state’s primary transportation funding programs, just 19% of the money has gone to projects that help reduce the need to drive, such as building out bike lanes, sidewalks, rail service, electric buses and affordable housing near jobs, according to an analysis by the Natural Resources Defense Council. These programs are in such demand that the state is regularly forced to deny funding to highly rated pedestrian and bicycle projects.

It’s worth reading the whole piece, because they’re right.

Caltrans continues to flush massive amounts of funding down the highway widening toilet, addicted to the never-ending chase to fix traffic congestion while fueling induced demand.

And like any other addict, the only solution is to quit.

………

It looks like Amazon’s Prime Days, which concludes today, is the bike world’s new October Black Friday.

………

Road.cc pits a $15,000 superbike against a $430 find from Facebook Marketplace to determine how much speed money can actually buy.

And concludes that it does make a difference, but not as much as you might think.

………

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

A Cambridge, Massachusetts newspaper says a court heard rehashed arguments in yet another lawsuit fighting the city’s separated bike lanes, after the city has already won preliminary injunctions and subsequent appeals in two similar cases.

A Streetsblog op-ed calls out a proposal supported by a majority of New councilmembers to license all ebike riders, which would create a bureaucratic nightmare and discourage ebike use, while ignoring the lackluster infrastructure and unsafe work standards at the root of the problem.

New Yorkers rode their “little bikes” last night in protest of the mayor’s derisive comments about being able to ride their “little bikes” safely thanks to him, at a time when the city’s bicycling deaths are up dramatically.

………

Local 

West Hollywood sheriff’s deputies reported three collisions involving pedestrians last month and four involving people on bicycles, while stating that enforcing the city’s restrictions on sidewalk riding is a low priority; it’s legal to ride on the sidewalk on any WeHo street without a bike lane.

 

State

Chinese ebike maker Velotric is offering discounts up to 20% to students, staff and faculty at UC San Diego, while the campus expands bike lockers and protected bike lanes.

San Marcos is getting a new eight-acre bike park, including a pump track, perimeter trail and jump lines for beginner, intermediate and advanced riders.

The campus police chief at UC Santa Cruz warns students about the growing bike theft problem at the school, while offering tips on how to keep your bike safe.

 

National

Electrek applauds Seattle’s cute little electric bike lane sweepers.

Denver drivers can’t seem to figure out how a traffic diverter works, continuing through on the wide bike lane instead of following the really big arrows on the street directing them to turn. Although the city deserves a lot of the blame for leaving enough room in the bike lane for cars to enter.

A 28-year old Denver man is nearly 8,000 miles into an effort to visit every US National Park in the Lower 48 states on one continuous bicycle trip; so far he’s made it to just 19 of the 51 parks on his itinerary.

A writer for Kansas’ Rider University student paper describes how a bright blue bicycle took him from an awkward 16-year old kid stuck at home during the pandemic, to a bike-riding man about campus.

This is why we need to ban right turns on red lights. A Kansas driver was caught on video slamming into a bike rider, who had waited until it appeared to be safe before crossing in a crosswalk with the light, and was right hooked by the driver after riding off the curb.

Road diets in Philadelphia led to a 34% decrease in fatalities on the city’s recently constructed Complete Streets.

Abandoned bikeshare bikes continue to litter a South Carolina town after the city’s provider shut down last spring.

 

International

Momentum says riding in a dress this fall is not as difficult as you might think.

A member of Britain’s Conservative Party says he will continue to call for a mandatory bike helmet law in Parliament, despite his own party repeatedly rejecting the proposal.

The mayor of Manilla’s Quezon City returned from a trip to Copenhagen, vowing to use the Danish city’s bicycle-friendly infrastructure as a role model to make her town the bicycling capital of the Philippines.

An Aussie bike advocacy group condemned video of an “entitled” SUV driver crossing the double yellow lines to pass both a bike rider and a second driver who was patiently following the bicyclist waiting for a safe opportunity to pass.

 

Competitive Cycling

Belgian pro Nathan Van Hooydonck says he immediately knew his cycling career was over when he was nearly killed in a car crash after suffering a heart problem while driving; he retired after waking from a coma and being fitted with an internal defibrillator to correct any future cardiac arrhythmia.

 

Finally…

Why settle for being a coffee roaster or a wrench when you can do both? That feeling when the heroine who defends you from bike thieves is an angry mom with a spade.

And why just ride on rubber when you can put the rubber to the rubber?

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

Pasadena Transportation chief to head LADOT, soft launch for CA ebike rebates, and lousy $500 ticket for AZ sideswipe

Well, I’m underwhelmed.

Nine months after Karen Bass became mayor of Los Angeles, she finally got around to naming someone to lead LADOT.

According to Streetsblog, current Pasadena Transportation head Laura Rubio-Cornejo will become the next general manager of the Los Angeles transportation department, assuming she’s approved by the city council.

Which is pretty much a given in a city where most councilmembers are loathe to rock the boat.

Rubio-Cornejo, who previously led Metro Countywide Planning, replaces underperforming former LADOT and NACTO chief Seleta Reynolds, who left for greener pastures at Metro a year ago.

Despite sky high expectations, Reynolds was largely a disappointment at LADOT, where her hands were tied by risk-averse city officials, and never appeared to have the full backing of former LA Mayor Eric Garcetti.

Whether Rubio-Cornejo fares any better remains to be seen.

But I wouldn’t hold your breath.

Photo from City of Pasadena, via Streetsblog.

………

Still no word on when the statewide launch of the California ebike rebate program will take place.

According to Calbike, San Diego’s Pedal Ahead, which has been chosen to administer the program, announced its long-awaited soft launch.

No, really.

We are currently launching a multi-phase California E-Bike Incentive Project soft launch which includes retailer onboarding and training, community-based organization (CBO) outreach and community engagement, and the website launch. The next one to two months will be focused on retailer and CBO outreach, which will be happening concurrently leading up to the application window opening.

The soft launch will focus on four regions in California and we have already begun introducing the program to local CBOs and identifying retailers in the regions to make sure they are fully supported with the appropriate program support, trainings and resources.

So, at least another month or two before we can expect to see any action outside of a few select, unnamed areas. And before we can start seeing more ebikes replace smelly, dangerous, climate-killing cars here in the late, great Golden State.

Anyone who’s been holding their breath waiting for this is probably dead by now.

………

You’ve got to be effing kidding.

Life is cheap in Arizona, where the driver who sideswiped a bicyclist taking part in a club ride, sending three people to the hospital, walked with a ticket for an unsafe pass carrying a lousy fine of up to $500.

Because evidently, knocking multiple bike riders down like so many bowling pins is just no big deal.

And pretty much legal.

………

Huh?

A writer for an Aussie website calls for mandatory registration and license plates for cyclists.

But not for people riding bikes.

By his standard, if you earn money riding a bike — like delivery riders — you’re a cyclist. But if you just ride to work once a year, or ride to the park with the kids, you’re just riding a bike.

Then there’s this.

If you routinely spend every Sunday morning rolling en masse along a beachside boulevard, pumping the blood as much as you are metaphorically pumping your fist at an imaginary Le Tour stage gate, then you are a cyclist too and you should probably pay for registration.

You’re on the road. You’re using the infrastructure. You are at risk from other cyclists and you are a risk to pedestrians. Plus, I can’t be the only person to have seen riders sail through red traffic lights…

Never mind that people taking part in group rides are usually in the traffic lane, not using bicycle infrastructure.

Or that splitting hairs must be easier down there, as he somehow expects police to tell whether someone on a bike rides every weekend, or just this once.

Or whether that guy riding to the park with his kids may have just finished a fast half century with the club.

Although his primary concern — I say his, since it has a man’s byline, but is so self-contradictory it could easily have been generated by AI — appears to be forcing bicyclists to carry insurance and get some skin in the game.

As with all these adjustments in the way we live our lives, we need the powers that be to arrange a little quid pro quo. Remove vehicle lanes to encourage more bike riders, so why not extend the reach of the third-party insurance that is included with motor vehicle registration to cover you when on your bike? You’ve paid the fee, does it really matter what vehicle you are using?

After all, you can’t drive and ride at the same time…

Plus, if we want less cars and more bicycles, taxation has to come from somewhere. Surely it would be better to recognise a contribution of your bicycle registration than to just have everything else ratcheted up to account for the gap.

It’s likely this piece is nothing more than an effort to create a little controversy to drive traffic to the site, while signaling to car shoppers that they’re on their side.

But they may find out the hard way all those weekend warriors on bikes buy cars, too.

………

The New York Times continues their bizarre anti-ebike campaign, arguing that parents don’t know whether to view the bikes as freedom or danger, as more teens take to them.

For the moment, the power to decide what teenagers may or may not ride falls to a nongovernmental authority: parents. Across the country, they are expressing a mix of enthusiasm, contrition and uncertainty about the trendy mode of transportation.

Some parents who initially embraced e-bikes now say their enthusiasm has waned with news of recent crashes involving teenagers.

Because apparently, no child was ever injured riding a bicycle without a battery.

The question they fail to answer, as they build their anecdotal case, is whether there have been more more, or more severe, crashes on ebikes than would have been expected on regular bicycles.

Unless and until they can provide that, their entire campaign should be seen as nothing more than anti-ebike fear mongering, with the possible exception of calling out the increased fire risk due to lithium ion batteries.

Since regular bikes hardly ever burst into flames.

………

The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee has now been around for 50 years.

Although it continues to remain strictly advisory, instead of being given the regulatory authority of a commission it should have received years ago.

………

Phil Gaimon responds to the critics, and arms bicyclists with responses to the 1% of hostile motorists who seem to make up most of the commenters online.

………

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

No bias here. Writing for The Spectator, the editor of the Jewish Chronicle says Jeremy Vine’s call for drivers to be banned from overtaking cyclists in major cities is “ridiculous” and “the real problem isn’t motorists but Jeremy Vine himself.” Something even Vine seems to agree with, as he says to take his comments with a grain of salt and stop overreacting to everything he says.

It turns out the Philippine driver who pulled a gun on an unarmed bicyclist is a former cop who left the force after repeated demotions, including one for grave misconduct, yet he complains he’s being depicted as a “bad person” on social media; Quezon City has offered the victim protection if he chooses to pursue a case against the former QC cop.  

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

Two Bakersfield boys saw very different outcomes when police attempted to stop them for riding against traffic; a 13-year old boy who pulled over and waited at the side of the road was released to his mother, while a 14-year old boy who kept riding and popping wheelies had the book thrown at him.

………

Local 

You may now be able to rent a Tern cargo bike for as little as $99 a month, as the Aussie bike leasing firm Wombi announces plans to set up their first US operation in Los Angeles.

Los Angeles plans to implement safety improvements from the city’s “Vision Zero Safety Toolkit” along a two-mile stretch of Hollywood Blvd east of Gower, which saw 56 people killed or seriously injured over the last decade. Although what those improvements will be remains to be seen, likely depending on public feedback.

The LA Times foresees an optimistic paradise of electric and hydrogen-powered vehicles, ebikes and free public transit replaced gas-guzzling cars within 20 years.

 

State

Calbike calls on you to help get a slate of active transportation bills out of the Suspense File in the Senate Appropriations Committee; the bills must move forward by the first of the month or be killed for this year.

The late Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins was one of us, doing some of his best thinking and songwriting on a mountain bike near his Laguna Beach home.

The San Diego Reader questions whether the same man is responsible for two violent bikejackings in the city.

 

National

A Honolulu ER doc rides his bike 21 miles to work every day, rain or shine — and has for over 30 years.

A Houston writer says “there’s something heart-warming about the anarchy of 2,000 people on bikes reclaiming the roads back from cars.”

An Indianapolis woman faces charges for DUI and driving without ever having a driver’s license after she crashed into a man riding a bicycle, leaving the victim with multiple compound fractures, while driving at over three times the legal alcohol limit.

This is the cost of traffic violence, part one. A “cherished” Evansville, Indiana high school music director was killed while riding his bicycle, though the details are unclear.

This is the cost of traffic violence, part two. The Boston-area bike rider killed by a UPS driver Monday afternoon was identified as a respected professor and mentor to graduate students at Tufts University School of Medicine.

As the California legislature continues to appease vested driving interests in an attempt to legalize a speed cam pilot program, New York stats show a 30% drop in speeding violations after their camera program began operating 24/7.

Life is cheap in Pennsylvania, where a driver got just 11½ to 23 months behind bars for severely injuring a man riding a bicycle while driving his pickup truck with inoperable brakes and without insurance.

A new 2-mile ADA-accessible Delaware bike path was funded with $23 million from the new federal infrastructure bill.

This is the cost of traffic violence, part three. Police in Baltimore are looking for the hit-and-run driver who took the life of a “beloved” mother of two as she rode her bike home from work over the weekend.

That’s more like it. A new 42 story, 631 unit Miami residential tower will have more than twice as many bicycle parking spaces as it will spaces for cars.

 

International

Tragic news from the UK, where two men on ebikes were killed by a driver on a “very fast” 50 mph roadway; the driver was arrested on a careless driving charge.

The fiancé of the Scottish bike rider killed by a drunk driver, who then hid his body for three years with the help of the driver’s brother, lashed out at the courts for failing to impose a “proper” sentence on the two men, who received 12 years and five years and three months, respectively.

A British man has defied the odds by learning to walk and eat again, after doctors gave him just 24 hours to live after hitting an embankment on his ebike.

Momentum Magazine visits the world’s longest purpose-built bike and pedestrian tunnel in Bergen, Norway; the Fyllingsdalen is 1.8 miles long and takes approximately 10 minutes to travel by bicycle.

Bicycling reports over 45,000 people rode their bicycles to a Formula 1 race in the Netherlands after the country banned cars from the event; another 55,000 arrived by bus or train. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Workers in the Spanish town of Elche are scraping bike lanes off the roads, after the newly installed far-right government adopted a populist, pro-car policy. Which is a warning of what could happen here if we don’t vote for bike-friendly candidates. 

He gets it. A writer from Islamabad, Pakistan says bicyclists aren’t a nuisance, whether you’re talking about kids on bikes or adults riding to reduce their waistlines.

 

Competitive Cycling

His hometown newspaper celebrates James Macdonald’s victory at the recent world road cycling championships, as the 80-year old Williamsburg, Virginia resident topped the 80-84 age group in a 53-mile race earlier this month.

Remco Evenepoel raged about safety at the Vuelta, or the lack thereof, after he was bloodied in a crash with a spectator following his stage three win, saying “It’s the third day in a row and it’s breaking my balls a bit now. I’ve had enough.” Meanwhile, the peloton has finally figured out they’re just pawns in the game.

The home of 22-year old pro cyclist Michel Hessmann was searched by German authorities as part of a doping investigation, after the suspended Jumbo-Visma rider tested positive for a banned diuretic earlier this month. But the doping era is over, right?

The inaugural CRIT Championship will debut in St. Petersburg, Florida this October, the race is the multi-million dollar brainchild of L39ion of Los Angeles founder Justin Williams.

 

Finally…

The street may be open, but it will cost you nearly 85 bucks to bike it. Even stairs are nothing to the world’s fastest pizza delivery rider.

And it took me about five seconds to find the bicycle in this picture.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

CA ebike rebate program now set to launch this fall, and more details on fallen bicyclists Bruce Elliott and Roy Wiegand

The California Air Resources Board reports that the state’s ebike incentive program is now expected to finally go live statewide sometime this fall, as the launch date keeps getting pushed back.

But don’t hold your breath.

The program was set to launch at the beginning of this year, then pushed back to the second quarter of the year, before now being set for fall.

Hopefully, they mean it this time.

You can learn more about the program here.

Ebike Photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels.

………

More details are finally available about fallen Redding bicyclist Bruce Elliott, who was killed by a driver during a group ride in Mentone on Saturday.

A memorial service will be held at 2 pm this Sunday at The University of Redlands Memorial Chapel for the well-loved phys ed teacher, who was also captain of Don’s Bikes Race Team, and mentor to bicyclists with Big Wheel Coaching.

Elliott’s family requests contributions to a crowdfunding campaign in lieu of flowers, with the funds to be split between the nonprofit Bikes for Kids Foundation and Grand Teton National Park. At this writing, it has raised over $9,400 of the modest $12,500 goal.

You can read more here.

………

While we’re on the subject, SF Gate has more details on the crash that killed popular Burbank musician and long-distance bicyclist Roy Wiegand in Monterey County Saturday afternoon, in what was a very bad weekend for SoCal bike riders.

Wiegand was riding alone after his riding partner had turned back, when he was right hooked by a 25-year old pickup driver while riding in the designated bike lane in the same direction.

He was on the last leg of his 2,500-mile Roy’s Ride fundraising ride to benefit the Navaho Nation, and bring clean, running water to impoverished households on the reservation.

The campaign has currently raised more than $35,000, easily topping what had originally been a $25,000 goal.

There’s no word on any charges for the driver, even though the CHP said the driver made an “unsafe” turn.

Which is putting it mildly.

………

Don’t hold your breath waiting for congestion pricing on Los Angeles roadways, as numble reports we still have four years to go before we’re likely to see anything.

………

Calbike has completed a year-long search by hiring active transportation and land use professional Kendra Ramsey as the group’s new executive director.

A member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, Ramsey comes to the organization from Sacramento civil engineering firm GHD, where she served as Active Transportation Project Manager, “developing innovative mobility options, Complete Streets plans, and corridor studies for local and regional agencies throughout the state.”

Let’s hope she finds her footing fast, because we definitely need help.

………

The New York Times continues their anti-ebike campaign, asking if California should regulate the bikes because teenagers are dying on them.

Unfortunately, though, teenagers get killed on regular bikes, too.

The question left unasked by the Times and other news outlets — let alone unanswered — is whether they’re getting killed or seriously injured at a higher rate on ebikes than on regular bikes.

Until the Times can answer that question, it’s all just noise.

………

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

It’s finally happened. A 16-year old Las Vegas boy was killed when he struck a wire booby trap, possibly set by a homeless man, while riding with his older brother and friends. Various booby traps have been set on roadways and trails around the world, but to the best of my knowledge, none have been fatal — until now. Let’s hope that whoever set the trap faces a murder count, if not terrorism charges. 

………

Local 

The Los Angeles City Council unanimously approved a $60 million contract with Metro for the design and construction of the Los Angeles River Valley Bike Path Project, including a new 13-mile segment of the LA River bike path connecting to the existing path in Griffith Park.

Streetsblog reports a new SGV Greenway project is under construction along the Big Dalton Wash in the unincorporated community of Vincent, between Covina and Irwindale; the 3-mile Vincent Community Bikeway is expected to open next year.

NHL referee Dan O’Rourke is scheduled to set off today on a 2,400-mile bike ride from Santa Monica to Chicago along old Route 66, to raise money and awareness for the National Federation of the Blind. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the tip.

The Manhattan Beach city council is urging the police to crack down on scofflaw ebike riders.

 

State

The Los Angeles Times reports that communities around the state are launching ebike and other green transit programs, as Long Beach prepares to open a 40-bike ebike lending library.

Calbike offers advice on how to talk back to the seemingly inevitable bikelash to virtually any bicycling proposal or news story.

Patch says a Temecula bike advocacy group is leading the way in creating harmony on city streets.

Sad news from Modesto, where a 79-year old man was killed in a hit-and-run while riding his bike; police booked the driver on charges of felony hit-and-run causing death and vehicular manslaughter, after she originally stayed at the scene before denying any involvement and driving off.

No surprise here, as San Francisco lowers the speed limit on several streets to 20 mph to improve safety, but drivers keep speeding, anyway.

 

National

Vice considers the best bike bags for your next ride.

Streetsblog says a new book explores America’s revenue-focused approach to traffic policing, including that traffic fines have “no discernible relationship to public safety,” while harming people of color and other vulnerable people.

Arizona bike riders remembered fallen bicyclist Karen Malisa on what would have been her 62nd birthday; she was one of two people killed, and 19 others injured, when a pickup driver plowed into a group ride in Goodyear, Arizona in February. Meanwhile, the driver still hasn’t been charged six months later.

A 22-year old New Mexico man will spend the next 20 years behind bars for fatally shooting another man after trying to steal his bike at a bus stop, and the 43-year old victim tried to fight back.

Colorado’s governor responds to the death of rising 17-year old cyclist Magnus White by reminding everyone to drive safely and yield to people on bicycles. Good advice, regardless of the circumstances. 

The New York Times examines the practical effects of the VanMoof bankruptcy filing, after the company ceased to exist virtually overnight, leaving owners of the Dutch ebikes unable to get repairs and unsure if the bike’s app-based software will continue to work.

A New York program is training formerly incarcerated people to work as bike mechanics for the city’s Citi Bike bikeshare, working with the Brooklyn DA’s office to recruit members of marginalized communities; the bikeshare program is experiencing record breaking ridership despite rumors of a sale.

Former President Trump is being arraigned today on conspiracy charges, but all Fox News seems to care about is President Biden going for a leisurely Delaware bike ride instead of hanging his head in shame over his son’s alleged misdeeds.

Robert Pattinson is one of us, as the Twilight actor goes for a bike ride around his New York neighborhood. But would it kill him to look like he’s actually enjoying it?

 

International

Three young British men face murder charges in the hit-and-run death of an ebike rider, even though police are still looking for their car.

Three people were hospitalized and several others treated at the scene after seven bike riders collided during the World Police and Fire Games in Winnipeg, Canada.

 

Competitive Cycling

In yet another tragic reminder of the dangers of race motos, four people were hospitalized after TV motorcycle crashed into fans with just over three miles to go Wednesday’s fifth stage at the Tour of Poland.

Australian road cyclist Rob Stannard will miss this week’s world championships in Glasgow, after he was provisionally suspended for an alleged doping violation from five years earlier.

Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay was reportedly denied a visa to travel to Scotland for the cycling world championships, but it didn’t matter because he withdrew from the race after crashing in last weekend’s Clasica San Sebastian.

Bicycling offers an update on the condition of Dutch cyclist Amy Pieters, who suffered a severe brain injury on a training ride with the Dutch national team two years ago, and still faces a very long road to recovery. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Pro basketball star Kevin Durant is now a part owner of the new National Cycling League, joining a number of current and former NBA and NFL players.

 

Finally…

Who needs shift levers when your bike could respond to voice commands? No, you don’t owe a reward to the person who stole your bike.

And yes, Tour de France bikes are different from what you ride.

And cleaner, too.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

LBPD ignores Yellow Alert after deliberate fatal hit-and-run, and bike lanes — and sharrows — coming to Doheny Drive

Let’s start with the frightening news that a Long Beach bike rider was deliberately murdered by a hit-and-run driver earlier this month.

According to the Long Beach Police Department, 29-year old Long Beach resident Leobardo Cervantes died this past Saturday, after he was intentionally run down by a driver on Sunday, July 9th.

Unfortunately, there’s no description of the driver, and the suspect vehicle is described only as a dark-colored sedan that fled east on Harding Street, after the crash near Harding and California Ave.

Shockingly, Cervantes is the third bike rider killed in a Long Beach hit-and-run this year, and the second just this month.

In fact, over a third of the year’s fatal bike crashes in Southern California have been hit-and-runs, and a full third of those have taken place in Long Beach.

Long Beach police could have alerted the public within minutes of the crash using California’s Yellow Alert hit-and-run notification system, rather than waiting two weeks until the victim died and the trail went cold.

You’d think prompt public notification would be helpful in solving any crime, but apparently, they would disagree.

Even though a similar Colorado program has been successful in bringing a number of fleeing drivers to justice.

Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay.

………

Beverly Hills is installing bike lanes on a sizable portion of Doheny Drive south of Burton Way — although part of that will be sharrows, instead of a painted lane.

And as we all should know by now, sharrows have been shown to be literally worse than nothing.

It’s also just a tad concerning that they have to explain to Beverly Hills drivers what the hell a bike lane is in the first place.

………

Mark your calendar for November’s World Day of Remembrance for the victims of traffic violence.

Click through for the thread, but you may need a Twitter account to read it.

………

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

No bias here. Police in Ontario — no, the one in Canada — added a jet engine sound effect to video of a bike rider going through a stop sign, and gave the rider a $180 ticket even though there was no conflicting traffic. The ticket might have been justified; the sound effects, not so much. 

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

An NYPD traffic agent was hospitalized with minor injuries after being attacked by a bike rider, who repeatedly punched the victim for refusing to get the hell out of their way.

A woman walking on a Newmarket, Ontario pathway was seriously injured when she was struck by someone riding a bicycle; people quoted in the story complained about bicyclists speeding along the trail, even though there was no suggestion the bike rider was going too fast in this case.

………

Local 

Work began two weeks ago to convert a a 10-foot-wide, 450-foot stretch of alley in Redondo Beach into a bike path, after Torrance pulled out of the project.

 

State

Uber is headed to court after a San Francisco bike rider refused a $1 million settlement to keep quiet about getting doored by a passenger leaving one of their drivers’ vehicles. You could buy a lot of my silence for a million bucks.

Bay Area bike riders were urged to use caution after a yet another East Bay bikejacking, when a pair of men boxed in a teenaged bike rider with their car, before jumping out and stealing his bike.

A Sacramento bike advocacy group is using a massive citywide bike valet program to fund its operations while getting people out of their cars; they hope to park more than 10,000 bikes this year.

 

National

There’s a special place in hell for the thief who stole over a dozen adaptive bikes worth more than $100,000 from an Anchorage, Alaska disability nonprofit on Saturday; police charged a man with the theft after spotting a wanted woman on outstanding warrants, who was in possession of some of the bikes. Seriously, what kind of schmuck steals bikes from people who need them for disabilities?

The 50,000 or more bike riders participating in this year’s RAGBRAI are finding small-town economies driven by local microbreweries.

A columnist for the New York Times looks back on the case of the alleged Citi Bike Karen, who says her life has been turned upside down after a recorded conflict with a young Black man over who had rightfully checked out a bikeshare bike. Never mind that both appeared to have a claim to the bike. Meanwhile, a website says the column is “like ‘Inception’ but for unmitigated white woman entitlement.

Several people were injured on New York’s Manhattan Bridge bike path when four or five moped riders and bicyclists collided on the span, at least some of them were delivery riders illegally using ebikes or mopeds on the bridge; one victim was reportedly at risk of bleeding out from severe leg cuts before another rider used a sweatshirt to put pressure on his wounds.

Some New York delivery riders are turning back to gas-powered mopeds because of a lack of ebike charging stations.

New York’s fire commissioner testified before the Consumer Product Safety Commission on Thursday, calling for new safety standards for lithium-ion ebike batteries.

A Georgia man was convicted in the controversial hit-and-run that killed a bike rider four years ago, after he called his buddy the local state representative following the crash instead of dialing 911, and the politician called the local police chief; the victim clung to life in a ditch for over an hour after the crash, and might have survived if he’d gotten help sooner. The driver faces a maximum of five years for hit-and-run. Even though it should be life for 2nd degree murder.

 

International

English bike riders complain about a “dreadful” new contraflow bike lane, calling it “an accident waiting to happen,” but the local government insists the green paint will magically protect them.

Britain’s Daily Mail once again played the game of who’s at fault, after a bike rider was sideswiped by a motorist when they both made a left turn at the same time. Okay, the driver should have checked his mirror before turning, but the bike rider was a damn fool for not holding back until the driver had finished his turn. So there.

The Turkish Cycling Federation is calling for stronger deterrent penalties after three people were killed riding bicycles in the country over the last two weeks.

 

Competitive Cycling

German cyclist Ricarda Bauernfeind soloed to victory in Thursday’s stage five of the Tour de France Femmes Avec Zwift, aka women’s Tour de France, after opening up a 90 second lead over the peloton.

Dutch cyclist Demi Vollering received a 20-second penalty for briefly drafting behind a team vehicle following a puncture, dropping her to 7th in the general classification standings, 12 seconds behind primary rival Annemiek van Vleuten.

Nine cyclists barely made the cut after they were delayed by a train with just one and a quarter miles to go during Thursday’s stage, clearing the stage by just 17 seconds.

Cycling News says Britain’s Hope x Lotus track bike for the 2024 Paris Olympics is even wilder than ever.

 

Finally…

Always tow a small catamaran behind your bike in case of climate change-induced flash floods or thousand-year rain events. That feeling when you illustrate a story about ebike licenses with an antique single speed bike, because your editors apparently have no idea what an ebike looks like.

And probably not the best idea to buy a bike using counterfeit money.

Unless maybe it’s a really good counterfeit.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin

News conference drums up support for LA-area speed cam pilot program, and Spanish mayor nails parking debate

Speed cams could soon be coming your way.

At a press conference in Studio City Tuesday morning, city and state officials explained the reasoning behind AB 645, which would establish a speed cam pilot program in Los Angeles, Long Beach and Glendale, along with three NorCal cities.

According to LADOT’s Makenzi Rasey,

“Too many people are dying on our streets and these crashes disproportionately impact low-income communities, people walking, people biking, our seniors, and our children.”

Like the 4,379 Californians killed in traffic collisions in 2021 alone, including 1,275 people walking and riding bikes.

Every one of them someone’s mother or father, son or daughter, sister or brother, leaving massive holes that can never be filled in the lives of their loved ones.

Rasey went on to add that LADOT is fighting the speeding crisis with “every street design tool available,” including lower speed limits on nearly 200 miles of streets, speed humps, signals and redesigned streets, along with more bike lanes.

Although as we can all testify, not nearly enough of those.

And the city still hasn’t moved forward with shovel-ready lane reductions planned for North Figueroa and Temple Street, which were blocked by councilmembers who are no longer in office.

Never mind the Westwood Blvd bike lanes blocked by then-Councilmember Paul Koretz, who has been replaced by the ostensibly more bike-friendly Katy Yaroslavsky.

The bill is also tailored to inflict minimal financial impact on, well, anyone, as Assembly Transportation Chair and congressional candidate Laura Friedman explained.

“Under our bill, unlike with getting a traditional speeding ticket, there’s no points on your license … Under this program, your first ticket, assuming that you aren’t egregiously speeding, is a warning. and after that, if you get a second ticket, that ticket starts at just $50. Now if you’re low-income that $50 is cut in half to just $25. And there’s a small escalator for every 10 mph over the limit you are going,” said Friedman.

Which doesn’t seem like nearly enough to get drivers to take their damn foot off the gas.

But that’s the compromise needed to get the bill through the legislature in a state where driving — and exceeding the speed limit — is considered a God-given right.

………

This may be the best answer to the incessant parking demands of drivers I’ve seen.

………

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

A Portland city commissioner is calling for rolling back requirements to install bike parking facilities in new residential buildings to increase affordability. Even though the costs are pretty damn negligible, especially compared to installing car parking. 

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

Seriously, don’t be a dick when riding your ebike at Burning Man.

A New Jersey teenager repeatedly punched a Target employee in the mouth when he was instructed to stop riding his bike. No, in the store.

A “thrill-seeking cyclist” was captured on video riding his bicycle on a busy Toronto freeway.

A middle-aged man in the UK, who should certainly know better, is accused of swearing at and threatening a young girl, and throwing her phone to the ground, after they collided while riding their bicycles. Schmuck.

………

Local 

ActiveSGV is hosting a family-friendly community bike ride this Saturday to demonstrate the Santa Anita Ave Complete Streets Project.

An LA-based writer for Velo is excited to encounter a man riding a custom Holland Cycles Titanium road bike on PCH in the ‘Bu.

 

State

Tragic news from San Diego, where a woman suffered life-threatening injuries when she was sideswiped by the driver of a massive pickup while riding her bike in the downtown Gaslamp District. Which should have at least been a prima facie violation of California’s three-foot passing law, but apparently wasn’t.

San Diego bike thieves are targeting ebikes as their popularity continues to grow. Ebikes, that is, not bike thieves, who continue to be unpopular in San Diego, and most everywhere else.

Bicycles — electric and otherwise — will now be banned from a five-block carfree section of downtown Ventura, along with skateboards and scooters. That would be illegal under state law if cars were allowed on the street, but apparently allowed since cars are banned.

SFist says San Francisco’s contentious Valencia Street centerline protected bike lane is causing confusion and chaos, with some people calling it the “Valencia Meatgrinder.”

Streetsblog talks with a 32-year old San Francisco man, seven years after he was severely injured by an inattentive driver while riding his bike, who argues that it would be easy to protect people on bicycles but the city won’t.

 

National

Apparently, rock and metal music tops the Spotify playlists for American bicyclists.

Bicycling offers tips on how to test-ride a bicycle before you buy. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Public comments submitted to the Consumer Product and Safety Commission calls for eliminating the requirement that kid’s bikes have coaster brakes, arguing the it keeps them from learning how to use handbrakes.

A lawsuit from the nonprofit Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) argues that the National Park Service was wrong to allow ebikes into national parks, saying the NPS hadn’t adequately addressed their potential to disturb wildlife and create conflicts with other people on the trail. Because evidently, the wilderness is only for fit people who don’t need a little help riding a bike. 

Seriously? Alaska’s governor vetoed a bill regulating ebikes, arguing ”…it creates unnecessary bureaucracy by regulating recreational activity,” even though all it does is establish the same three-tiered classifications pioneered in California, and passed in many, if not most, other states. The sponsor says the legislature will override the veto of the bill, which passed with overwhelming support.

In a clear demonstration of bent-up demand for ebike rebates, Denver’s latest round of ebike rebate vouchers was completely snapped up just three minutes after they became available. Which does not bode well for California’s vastly underfunded program, whenever it finally goes online.

Even rural ski resort town Jackson, Wyoming could soon require bike parking in all future developments.

An AP sportswriter is one of the roughly 80,000 people riding across Iowa in this year’s 50th RAGBRAI, writing that the mantra of the participants is “The ride will provide.”

Um, okay. An Illinois man reportedly threw a kid’s bike into a pond because he thought the boys were fishing too close to some ducks.

A panicking Michigan father threw a bicycle at a second story window to wake his kids and alert them that their home was on fire; firefighters arrived shortly afterwards to pull the kids to safety.

Who needs a car to attend the legendary Rhode Island Newport Folk and Jazz Festivals when you have a bicycle?

Florida man strikes again — literally — after a 37-year old man whacked another man over the head with a bicycle kickstand, because the victim apparently refused to play a country song. Although it’s not clear if he refused to play a particular country song, or just country songs in general.

 

International

Police threw the book at a 17-year old Toronto girl after she crashed a stolen car into a female bike cop.

Oxford, England merchants are accusing the city council of being “hyper-woke” — whatever the hell that means — after refusing to close a bike lane for the city’s annual Christmas market. Because obviously, the lives and safety of bike riders are of no importance compared to selling holiday treats and trinkets.

A 55-year old Oxford, England man faces a charge of “‘wanton or furious cycling” for crashing into an 81-year old woman walking on a pathway, who died 12 days later.

Litium-ion ebike battery fires could eventually be a thing of the past, as Swiss bikemaker Stromer introduced the first solid-state ebike battery, which promises to cut charging times down to just 20 minutes or less, even for the largest batteries.

 

Competitive Cycling

Outside talks with trans cyclist Austin Killips, who says she just wants to ride her bike, after becoming the poster child for excluding trans athletes from women’s sports.

Bicycling says Belgium’s Lotte Kopecky continues to hold the yellow jersey in the women’s Tour de France, but expects a shake-up in today’s mountainous stage four. The story doesn’t appear to be locked behind their usual paywall, but here’s the Yahoo link just in case.

The Guardian says the pay parity gulf between men’s and women’s cycling is continuing to widen, as all three Grand Tours now have women’s versions, but with significantly less prize money.

Colombian national time trial champ and former Tour de Suisse and Volta a Catalunya winner Miguel Angel Lopez has been provisionally suspended for a suspected doping violation. But bicycling is clean now, right?

 

Finally…

What bikes of the future could look like, if it wasn’t for rules and stuff. Your next e-mountain bike could be made of bamboo, other than, you know, the battery and all that metal and rubber stuff.

And this is what happens when you give an ebike to a Slopestyle cyclist.

https://www.tiktok.com/@canyon_bicycles/video/7254580546742045979?embed_source=%3Bnull%3Bembed_blank&refer=embed&referer_url=www.bikemag.com%2Fnews%2Fgravel-bike-slopestyle&referer_video_id=7254580546742045979

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin