Tag Archive for Chino

Morning Links: Incycle bike thieves busted, elected officials in Hollywood, and finally a better bike helmet

Good news.

Chino police have busted three people accused of running over an Incycle bike shop manager after stealing a $10,000 bike.

Incycle store manager Megan Rodriguez ran into the parking lot in an attempt to stop them after they walked out with the bike, and slipped under the truck’s wheels when they refused to stop.

Fortunately, she’s been released after being hospitalized with critical injuries. A crowdfunding page raised over $35,000 for her medical care.

Kern County residents Ronald Wolfe, Kyle Stewart and Nichole Stewart were booked on suspicion of robbery, conspiracy and attempted murder for the Incycle heist. Police say they may have conducted similar crimes — without running over anyone else — throughout Southern California.

Let’s hope authorities take this case as seriously as those potential charges suggest.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

………

Here’s a great opportunity to advocate for bikes and safer streets. Or maybe just give officials a piece of your mind.

Representatives for city, county, state and federal elected officials will be gathered under one roof at the Will & Ariel Durant Library in Hollywood from 3 pm to 6 pm today.

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to make it, even though the library is just walking distance from my home. Or would be, if I could actually walk these days.

So feel free to show up in my place, and demand some serious action on improving street safety in Hollywood, and throughout the LA area.

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Big news on the bike helmet front, as Trek’s Bontrager division introduces what they claim is the safest helmet ever made.

According to the company, the new WaveCel design is 48 times more effective at preventing concussions than tradition foam helmets, without adding much weight.

And it offers significantly greater protection than MIPS helmets, which had been the gold standard for preventing concussions.

The downside is, it will cost you at least $150. But if you’re a helmet user, it could be worth it.

Speaking for myself, after spending time in the ICU when my helmet failed to prevent a serious concussion in the infamous beachfront bee incident, I may be the first in line to get one once I can ride again.

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Somehow, we missed this one last year.

But if you’ve got eleven minutes to kill, you could do worse than watching pro mountain bikers shred on tiny bikes.

Or spend just half the time taking in this Streetfilm of bike advocates sharing the most ridiculous comments they’ve heard in opposition to bike lanes.

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Local

Streetsblog LA announces the honorees for their May 9th fundraiser; the list now includes Active SGV, Jason Islas, Asm. Laura Friedman, Justice for Woon, and the David Bohnett Foundation. You can get tickets here.

After pulling the plug on its WeHo Pedals bikeshare, West Hollywood will go forward with an 18-month pilot program for dockless ebike bikeshare, though with strict limits on where they can be parked — which kind of defeats the purpose of dockless systems. And still no e-scooters will be allowed in the city.

Seriously, the former Governator riding his e-fat bike to the gym just isn’t news anymore.

State

A proposed bill in the state legislature would double the penalty for a fatal hit-and-run from four to eight years; the bill will move forward after emotional testimony from the widow of the hit-and-run victim it’s named after.

San Diego has finally thrown in the towel and given their long-suffering docked bikeshare provider the boot; the city is looking to dockless bikeshare to take up the slack.

Berkeley pulls a page from LA’s former playbook and continues to let the city’s streets deteriorate, saying they would cost $120 million to fix, and another $50 million to transform them into Complete Streets. Which is probably cheaper than the legal settlements they’ll pay out for not fixing them. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

San Francisco bicyclists rally to demand more protected bike lanes. Meanwhile, a San Francisco city supervisor’s call for lowering speed limits butts into the deadly 85th Percentile Law. Maybe if San Francisco joins LA in demanding changes, we might actually get somewhere.

Gear Patrol reveals the winners from last weekend’s North American Handmade Bicycle Show in Sacramento.

National

A website from the American Society of Landscape Architects recounts the recent National Bike Summit to examine why bicycling has flatlined in the US.

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss says confronting the driver who almost killed you is never worth it. As someone who’s done exactly that for most of my riding career, I’ve had some very positive conversations with drivers who’ve unintentionally threatened my safety. But the bad outweighed the good by a significant margin.

Schwinn is introducing a 28 mph gravel ebike, which would require a helmet in California. And you’ll have to be over 16 to ride it.

Bicyclits say a popular Portland bike path is virtually unridable due to homeless encampments and piled up trash.

Interesting idea. A Boulder CO bike shop is offering a certified pre-owned program for bikes, including a pre-defined trade-in or buyback schedule to encourage buyers to trade their bikes back in ever 18 months.

Iowa City, Iowa is conducting a road diet on a major street, stressing that it’s being done to improve safety and that the extra space for bike lanes is just an added benefit. No word on whether the locals will revolt like West LA’s entitled drivers.

A Houston congresswoman has proposed federal legislation to improve bike safety by adding it to driver’s license exams, improving street signage, and leveraging funds to build bike lanes.

Now there’s some honesty for a change. The mayor of Philadelphia says the streets of the city suck when it comes to safety. And used exactly that word.

A North Carolina bill would require bike owners to license their bicycles for a $10 annual fee, with the funds going to support bike safety projects. Except studies have shown that it would cost more to license bikes than a program like that would bring in. And result in more bikes rusting in the garage once the registration expires.

Atlanta drivers who stop or park in a bike lane will now be subject to a $100 fine. If it’s actually enforced, which is usually the problem.

No surprise here. The drunk driver who slammed into several bike riders at a New Orleans Mardi Gras parade, killing two innocent people, was over twice the legal limit; police estimate his BAC was around .215 at the time of the crash. Also no surprise that he’s asking for a reduction in his half-million dollar bail.

Heartbreaking news from Mississippi, where a 12-year old boy is in an induced coma and facing multiple surgeries after he was badly mauled by a pack of dogs, who knocked him off his bike and dragged him into a ditch. The dogs were put down, but owner won’t face any charges because there are no regulations for dogs in the county.

The Juice is no longer loose. Orlando, Florida’s Juice docked bikeshare is shutting down after two years in the face of competition from dockless bikeshare; the city hopes to bring it back in a dockless form.

International

Specialized’s new MIMIC saddle line promises to provide greater comfort for women with a design specifically made for a woman’s body.

Mexico City’s famed Paseo de la Reforma now has its own all-woman bike cop squad.

Great Britain’s Royal Mail is trying out eight e-trikes in an attempt to help clean up London’s dirty air. Maybe they need to bring back Pashley-riding posties.

Britain considers lifting a ban on e-scooters that dates back nearly two centuries before they were invented.

We may have to deal with distracted LA drivers. But at least we hardly ever have to worry about getting live cobras stuck in our wheels like these Indian bike riders.

Competitive Cycling

Britain’s dominant Team Sky will now be known as Team Ineos, as Britain’s richest man assumes sponsorship.

Finally…

If you’re going to flee the scene after a crash, take the front end of your car with you. Pedaling with pornstars.

And seriously, if you’re wanted on a murder charge, wear a damn helmet when you ride a bike if that’s what the law requires.


Bike rider killed one week ago in Chino

Sometimes it takes time for news to filter out from remote locations. Though you wouldn’t think that would apply to someplace like Chino.

Yet that’s what happened here, as news finally broke that a bike rider was killed while riding in the city last Sunday.

The weekly Chino Champion reports that 28-year old Pomona resident David Alas was riding east on Philadelphia Street at 6:51 pm when he was hit by a car traveling north on Benson Ave. He died a short time later at Chino Valley Medical Center.

No other information is available at this time.

A satellite view shows a four-way intersection controlled by traffic signals in every direction, suggesting that either the victim or the driver may have run the red light. It’s also possible that the light may have changed while the victim was in the intersection, and unable to make it across in time.

Anyone with information is urged to call Chino PD Traffic Investigator Scott Trosper at 909/334-3153.

This is the 10th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first in San Bernardino County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for David Alas and all his loved ones.

79-year old bike rider killed in Chino; SoCal cycling fatalities up slightly over last year

Word is just coming in that a 79-year old bike rider was killed in a Chino collision earlier today.

According to the Press-Enterprise, Manuel Vera Ortega was struck by Silverado pickup at noon Tuesday somewhere south of the intersection of Central and Washington Avenues. He was taken to a nearby medical center where he died less than an hour later.

The truck, driven by 73-year old William Parkinson of Chino, was traveling south on Central; no word on which direction Ortega was traveling or where he was on the roadway. And no other details on how the collision may have occurred.

A satellite view shows a five lane divided boulevard with no bike lanes, and only one visible driveway on the southbound side.

This is the 48th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fifth in San Bernardino County; that compares with 45 SoCal deaths and four in the county this time last year.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Manual Ortega and all his loved ones.

Thanks to Danny Gamboa for the link.

 

 

Cyclist killed in Chino last month; total silence from news media

Let’s start with the facts.

About two weeks ago —  Thursday, October 26th at 6 am — 44-year old Francisco Donato of Pomona was riding his bike in the bike lane on the 13300 block of East End Avenue in Chino when he was seriously injured by an SUV driven by 18-year old Gerardo Mendez.

Mendez reportedly was attempting to bypass another vehicle by driving his massive 2001 Yukon in the bike lane when he hit Donato from behind; after all, that narrow strip of paint was put there just for that purpose, and no reasonable person could possibly have foreseen that there might actually be a bike in a bike lane.

And yes, that was sarcasm.

Donato was was airlifted to Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Colton where he was listed in critical condition.

And that’s where the story ends, as far as the press is concerned.

Somehow, they missed the news that Donato died as a result of his injuries (#7) two days later. Or what, if any, charges were filed or under investigation in the case.

Apparently, their interest in the case ended once Donato didn’t die right away. Or maybe once they posted the press release from the Sheriff’s Department.

No follow-up. Not even, it would seem, a phone call to the medical center the following Monday to learn if the victim had lived or died.

No big deal. Just another cyclist suspended in a press netherworld between living and dead, like Schrodinger’s cat. And likely to remain there, if one of my regular sources hadn’t lifted the lid and looked inside to discover yet another dead cyclist.

It’s a problem I’ve struggled with for some time.

I often come across stories about cyclists who have been seriously injured, on nearly a daily basis, in fact; if I reported on every collision I heard about, it would be all I ever wrote about.

Then… nothing.

No follow-up stories relating how the critically injured rider miraculously recovered from his or her injuries. Or didn’t. Maybe I’m expecting too much, but it seems to me that if the story was worth reporting in the first place, it’s worth reporting whether the victim made it.

But that’s just me.

I’ve tried following up on various cases on my own, but have yet to get a response back from any police agency to any request for more information, with the singular exceptions of LAPD Sgt. David Krumer and Santa Monica PD Sgt. Thomas McLaughlin. I suspect as soon as they hear or see the word blog, my request goes into the Things We Don’t Give a Damn About pile.

Even some fatalities never make it into the press. I’m still waiting for any sort of confirmation about the apparent fatality that occurred in East L.A. last June, which is why it’s not included in my stats on cycling fatalities in L.A. County, along with another unconfirmed fatality in the Malibu area not long afterwards.

And the matter hasn’t been helped by the recent change in Google’s algorithms, which have made it much harder to find more obscure news stories from less populated areas. And makes me worry constantly that I may be missing something.

I don’t have the answer. I wish I did.

In fairness, the press is doing a much better job of reporting cycling injuries and death than just a few years ago, when a cyclist could have been hit by a car in the middle of a newsroom and reporters would have just stepped around the wreckage on their way to the water cooler.

These days, I seldom hear of a fatality without finding some mention in the press, somewhere. Key word being seldom, as indicated above.

But it’s those frequent stories of riders seriously injured that give me pause. And make me question whether they’re back on their bikes, or struggling to recover, or lying in the cold, hard ground, sadly forgotten by a cycling community that never got the news.

Clearly, I’m not the only one who wonders.

I received the following message from the same anonymous tipster who told me about Francisco Donato’s sadly unreported death.

On Sunday evening, I rode past the investigation of a car vs. bike on Bolsa Chica Street.  Totalled bike, flares, kliegs. surveying equipment, the whole nine yards.  An officer on scene confirmed that “one of our local transients” was transported to the hospital.  The PD’s arrest log shows a DUI >.10% (no indication of injury or death) at the approximate time of the incident.  There’s been no mention in the local press.  Some worthless homeless guy?  On a bike?  The collision won’t matter any more than his death.

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