Tag Archive for Downey

Aluminum foil foils traffic light sensor fails, unconfirmed report of Newport Beach bike death, and new Downey bike lane

Phillip Young writes today with a brilliant DIY workaround for the problem of carbon wheels not being recognized by traffic signal sensors.

Would you please pass this traffic light safety tip along to your readers with carbon rim wheels?

Carbon rim bicycle wheels usually do not trigger traffic signal light sensor coils buried in the pavement and can be a safety issue. The non-conducting carbon rims do not change the magnet field around sensor coils, so the traffic light doesn’t change for you.

If the traffic signal light doesn’t trip in your travel direction and you have waited for 2 or 3 minutes, you may be inclined to run the red traffic signal light dodging traffic at your peril.

My carbon rim bicycle wheels would not trigger traffic light sensor coils buried in the pavement until aluminum foil tape was applied to the rim circumference with some foil tape overlap.

I added 3M adhesive backed aluminum foil tape cut about the width of rim tape where the normal cloth rim tape goes. The adhesive backed aluminum foil tape sticks well to the carbon rim material and weighs almost nothing. This should work on all carbon rims using inner tubes.

Push the aluminum foil tape down against the rim to get full contact and adhesion. Install the normal cloth rim tape on top of the aluminum foil tape. The foil tape also offers additional support to the rim tape over the rim spoke holes.

The rim with aluminum foil tape now reliably triggers traffic light sensor coils. The bicycle wheel rim with aluminum foil should be positioned parallel to and directly over the sensor coils buried in the pavement rewarding you with a green light.

May your travels be safe and green lights will always be with you,

Phil

PS: Aluminum rim bicycle wheels usually work triggering traffic signal lights if the wheel is positioned parallel to and directly over the pavement sensor coils.

For those looking for a more detailed explanation of why this works, Young followed up with this post from Cyclelicious.

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Nextdoor users have been reporting a possible bicycling fatality Monday morning on Dover Drive near PCH in Newport Beach.

So far, though, I’ve been unable to find any confirmation. So let’s hope that Nextdoor, which is not exactly known for its veracity, is wrong this time.

Thanks to David Huntsman and Lois for the heads-up.

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Downey has a new painted bike lane on Old River School Road.

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A crowdfunding campaign to help the victims of Saturday’s vehicular attack at a master’s bike race in Show Low, Arizona has raised nearly $60,000 of the $100,000 goal.

Which works out to just $10,000 for each of the critically injured victims.

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For anyone who needs a little something to entertain yourself on the rare moments you’re not riding your bike, how about coloring a few LA landmarks?

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This is who the anti-bike crowd are really opposing when they stand up against bike paths and protected bikeways.

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Nothing like heading out for a McDonald’s run with a tandem bike-powered car.

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

No bias here. After a California man was killed when he struck a chain blocking a Carson City, Nevada trail, the local sheriff warns against riders over-extending their confidence levels, instead of warning about dangerous chains strung across pathways that can kill unsuspecting people on bicycles.

Pennsylvania police are looking for the hit-and-run driver who sideswiped at least five bike riders with his passenger side mirror; the victims believe it was a deliberate attempt to buzz, if not injure, the riders.

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Local

Los Angeles received an $18 million grant for safety improvements to the Broadway corridor in South Los Angeles, rather than the $64 million the city asked for, on the condition that they limit the project to the safe street infrastructure component of the application for the deadly street, and guarantee completion; the street is one of LA’s most dangerous streets for bike riders and pedestrians.

LAist examines how Van Nuys’ Retro Xpress Bicycles navigated the pandemic as an essential business.

NoHo ‘bent dealer Bent Up Cycles is now the proud owner of Florida recumbent maker Bacchetta Bicycles.

 

State

San Diego drivers are complaining about a lack of parking in certain parts of town. Which is a pretty good argument to not drive if you don’t have to.

That’s more like it. A TV reporter tries out San Francisco’s Lyft bikeshare ebikes, and swears she’ll never drive again.

 

National

NBC News examines whether removing freeways built on a legacy of inequity can heal historic wounds.

VeloNews offers tips on how to avoid cyclist’s palsy, the painful numbness and tingling in your hands and arms from gripping the handlebars.

A new report shows that the jump in traffic deaths during the pandemic was more likely to affect Black people, who were killed at a rate 25% higher than white people.

Tragic news from Texas, where a man drowned in a North Texas lake when he rode his bike into the side of a bridge and fell over the guardrail.

The New Yorker takes a stab at humor by suggesting that riding a bicycle isn’t just like riding a bike, after all.

 

International

Yet another new study shows that ebike riders can complete a trip faster and with less effort than on a conventional bike, but still gain significant health benefits.

Vancouver has honored fallen mountain biker Jordie Lunn by naming a new bike park after him, two years after the famed stunt cyclist was killed trail riding with friends in Mexico.

An Ontario, Canada man begged a judge for mercy after he was convicted of the hit-and-run death of a bike-riding woman, insisting he just “panicked and made a mistake.” Never mind that the prosecutor is only asking for a “stiff sentence” of only two years behind bars. Then again, how much mercy did he show his victim, who was sentenced to death at his hands?

A British filmmaker stayed relatively close to home during the pandemic by filming a challenging 450-mile ride around Wales.

Over 85% of readers of the UK’s Courier newspaper think bike helmets should be made mandatory. Which only shows just how wrong 85% of readers can be.

Berlin is expanding the city’s bike network by making 15 miles of popup bike lanes installed during the pandemic permanentUnlike a certain Southern California megalopolis we could name, which missed out on a once-in-a-generation opportunity by failing to install any to begin with.

 

Competitive Cycling

Defending Tour de France champ Tadej Pogačar may be one of the few people who can claim to have pedaled a path from village unicyclist to winner of the world’s greatest bike race.

Cycling News considers the unique mystique of Mont Ventoux in Tour de France history; competitors in this year’s race will have to surmount the mountain twice in a single stage.

Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome lowers his sights, insisting he’ll be happy just winning a stage in this year’s Tour.

Cycling Tips examines the eternal question of what team sponsors actually do on the men’s WorldTour.

Reuters looks at five women’s cyclists to watch at the Tokyo Olympics, including pink sock-wearing American speedster Chloe Dygert.

Cyclist considers the top rivalries in pro cycling, dating back to 1940s cycling legends Fausto Coppi and Gino Bartali.

 

Finally…

Not every Olympic cyclist has her very own Chipotle bowl. That feeling when your epic bike ride from Moscow to California only takes a few hours.

And probably not the best idea to growl at the bear you just startled.

Just saying.

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

Update: 47-year old bicyclist killed in collision with semi in Downey Wednesday am

More bad news.

According to the Downey Patriot, a bike rider was killed in a collision with a semi-truck this morning.

The victim, identified only as a 47-year old Norwalk resident, was riding west on Stewart and Gray Road when he was struck by the truck traveling south on Bellflower Blvd.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver, a 59-year old Lakewood man, was questioned and released. He did not appear to be under the influence.

No word on how the collision occurred. A satellite view shows an intersection with four lanes in each direction, and right and left turn lanes on Steward and Gray.

This is the third bicycling fatality this year, and the first in LA County. And it’s the third in Downey in less than two years.

Update: The victim has been identified as 47-year old Norwalk resident Michael Keeler.

According

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Michael Keeler and his loved ones.

Update: 69-year old bike rider killed in Downey collision

Word is just coming in that a bike rider was killed in Downey last night.

According to the Downey Beat, a bicyclist was struck and killed by a vehicle around 9:30 Friday night on the 10600 block of Lakewood Blvd, between Florence Ave and Firestone Blvd; the victim appeared to be male.

The driver remained at the scene. No other information is available at this time.

This is the 27th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 13th in LA County. That compares with 45 this time last year in the seven county SoCal region, and 18 in the county.

It’s just the second fatal bicycling collision in Downey in the last five years.

Update: The Press-Telegram has identified the victim as 69-year old Downey resident Adel Mikhail. 

Raw video footage from the scene places the collision near the intersection of Lakewood and Muller St. (Warning: The video may be hard to take, as it shows the victim’s body being covered.)

There’s a white car stopped in the left lane, with damage to the right side and windshield; his body appears to be in the roadway directly ahead of the car. The victim’s bike is off to the right, apparently without lights, though it’s possible they may be hidden or turned off.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Adel Mikhail and his loved ones.

Whittier rider dies of injuries suffered in Downey collision last month

Ghost bike in memory of Sal Sahagun; photo by Danny Gamboa

Ghost bike in memory of Sal Sahagun; photo by Danny Gamboa

Most bicycling collisions never make the news.

Even when they do, there’s seldom any follow-up. So we may never know if an injured rider made a full recovery or succumbed to his or her injuries days or weeks after the collision.

And no one other than a handful of people close to the victim will ever know.

That’s exactly what happened when a bike rider was critically injured in a collision with a big rig truck in Downey last month.

According to the Los Cerritos News, a 46-year old Whittier resident was hit while he was riding his bike at the intersection of Florence and Fairford Avenues around 8 am on Friday, April 25th. A satellite view shows a busy intersection leading to a freeway onramp, with heavy truck traffic visible in the photo.

No word on how the collision occurred; however, at that hour, he was most likely riding to work. The paper reports the driver was not charged, though the investigation was ongoing at the time.

Then no further word until someone reached out to the LACBC last week, asking for help in honoring a co-worker who had passed away recently after being injured in a collision on April 25th. However, they couldn’t find any information confirming the death, and reached out to me to see if I’d heard anything.

Sadly, that news came today, when a family member confirmed that Sal Sahagun has died of the injuries he suffered in that April 25th collision.

Hopefully, we’ll be able to get more details later.

This is the 42nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 17th in Los Angeles County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Sal Sahagun and all his family and loved ones.

Thanks to Colin Bogart for the heads-up.

19-year old Downey man fatally shot while riding his bike; 8th fatal SoCal bike shooting this year

This has got to stop.

According to the Downey Beat, a 19-year old man was shot to death while riding his bike in Downey early Monday morning.

The man, who has not yet been publicly identified, was found bleeding in the street on Earnshaw Avenue near the intersection with Prichard Street around 3 am. Police report few clues and no witnesses; the site reports that it’s currently unknown if he was shot from a passing car or because of a dispute, or for some other reason.

Despite the lack of public ID, the victim was clearly well known in the neighborhood, described as friendly man and a good barber who gave haircuts to local residents.

This is the eight shooting victim killed while riding a bike this year, and the seventh in the County of Los Angeles. That compares with 59 cyclists killed in traffic-related collision since the first of the year.

He may not have been targeted because he rode a bike. But the loss of a young man who hadn’t even seen his 20th birthday is every bit as tragic.

And just as much a waste.

My sympathies to the victim’s family and friends.

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Cyclist and attorney Dj Wheels reports that Shawn Fields, who was recently sentenced to seven years in the drunken hit-and-run death of 17-year old Pacoima cyclist Danny Marin, has filed an appeal of his conviction.

Wheels reports that the appeal was filed the same day Fields changed his plea. There’s no basis given, but it’s a safe bet that it hinges on the defense’s motion to have almost all the evidence tossed for lack of probable cause in entering Field’s home to make the arrest, which was denied by the judge.

Fields was sentenced to 2 years for the vehicular manslaughter charge, plus five for the hit-and-run, as well as ordered to pay $10,515 in restitution to the victim’s family.

He is now confined in the North Kern Prison, where he can expect to spend at least the next three-plus years with good behavior.

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