Tag Archive for ebike rebates

Fed ebike credit dies with Build Back Better plan, and Lime CEO says it’s the cars littering out streets, not the scooters

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It looks like there won’t be a federal ebike tax credit in your stocking this year, after opposition from West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin doomed Biden’s Build Back Better bill for this year.

If not permanently.

At least California residents can look forward to a $10 million ebike tax incentive program going into effect sometime this coming year.

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He gets it.

The CEO of Lime tells Time it’s not ebikes and scooters that are littering our streets, it’s all the cars.

Thanks to Chris Giza for the heads-up.

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

A Houston councilmember tries to have it both ways, walking back criticism of bike lanes as being too in tune with the needs of bicyclists, to the detriment of drivers, then saying his complaints about bike lanes still stand.

Welsh dirt and pedal bike riders were warned to be careful, after a man suffered horrific neck injuries when someone sabotaged a bike trail by stringing barbed wire over it at neck level. As we’ve said before, anyone who does something like this should face terrorism charges, because there is a clear intent to injure others to frighten people off their bikes.

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Local

ActiveSGV celebrated the season with a test ride of the new ebikes coming to the San Gabriel Valley’s bikeshare system next year, along with a ride to observe a 100-year old Christmas light tradition.

 

State

A 57-year old dialysis patient rolled into San Diego to finish the final 1,800 miles of the New Hampshire to California recumbent ride her son was on when he was killed by a Mississippi driver three years ago.

Congratulations to Santa Barbara for their newfound status as a Silver level Bicycle Friendly Community.

San Francisco advocates say they’ve been patient long enough, and want the protected bike lanes and intersections they were promised before Covid shut everything down.

 

National

Nice move from Yuma, Arizona, which has installed a public sculpture honoring a local Special Olympian along a local bike path; the bicycle used by 49-year old Charles E. Cheatham will stand as a memorial to the athlete, who passed away earlier this year.

Police in Glendale, Arizona ask for the public’s to catch a hit-and-run driver who killed a bike rider, just one day after the fatal crash; meanwhile, police in Amarillo, Texas just waited until the weekend was over. Unlike the police in a certain SoCal megalopolis we could name, who prefer to wait until the trail grows cold, for reasons known only to them.

Chicago advocates’ warnings of increased danger for people walking or riding bikes if a new Amazon warehouse was approved have come to pass, after a bike lane was erased to make room for a turn lane for the convenience of their drivers, dumping bike riders into traffic without warning.

New York’s mayor elect has selected the longtime chair of the city council’s transportation committee as the new head of the Department of Transportation. He gets high marks from the city’s bike advocates. 

Gothamist says outgoing New York Mayor De Blasio gets praise for starting Vision Zero, while critics complain he didn’t go far enough. Sort of like another big city mayor and future ambassador to India we could name.

New Orleans plans to focus on improving safety for bike riders and others on the streets next year, after the worst year for traffic deaths in the Crescent City since 2014.

 

International

Bike Hacks considers why bike jerseys are so expensive these days.

British police have made a trio of arrests in the home invasion robbery that terrified pro sprinter Mark Cavendish and his family last month, charging a 30-year old man and two 27-year olds for the break-in; no word on whether any of the items stolen were recovered.

Good news about former Italian F1 driver and Paralympic gold medalist Alex Zanardi, who is finally home from the hospital, 18 months after he suffered severe head injuries when he was hit by a truck driver while training on his handcycle.

Over 200 people in Santa suits turned out for an annual bike ride in the Bosnia-Herzegovina city of Mostar yesterday; the four-mile ride was open to anyone with a bicycle and a Santa hat.

 

Competitive Cycling

The three kings of ‘cross will be going head-to-head-to-head four times in the week between Boxing Day and the day after New Years, which really needs a better moniker.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to whip out a gun while stealing a bike from Walmart, at least steal a better bike. Now you can ride gravel without ever taking your bike off the rollers. Or going outside, for that matter (scroll down).

And that feeling when you get your stolen bike back before you even know someone took it.

Which is another good reminder to register your bike.

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

Likely 60% boost to CA Active Trans funding, a call for universal free ebikes, and Wisconsin attack ruled intentional

Calbike breaks down how California can expect to benefit from the new federal infrastructure plan.

According to Streetsblog, that includes a 60% boost in the Active Transportation Program, which provides most of the funding for bike and pedestrian projects in the state.

It also contains $1 billion to mitigate the damage caused to communities affected by the too-often racist legacy of freeway building. Although that’s 300 times less than the funding in the bill to build freeways.

And while the it contains language requiring planners to “consider the needs of all road users” in designing new projects, California’s existing Complete Streets policies already carry a similar requirement.

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He gets it.

A writer for the New York Times says the 30% rebate on ebike purchases doesn’t go far enough to address climate change.

So he says give everyone a free ebike, instead. Along with safe streets to ride them on.

According to Jay Caspian Kang,

City governments should purchase an electronic bicycle for every resident over the age of 15 who wants one. They should also shut down a significant number of streets to be used only by bicycles and a small number of speed-regulated, municipal electric vehicles.

The Biden administration’s Build Back Better Act includes a $4.1 billion tax break for e-bike purchases. It would let you save 30 percent via a refundable tax credit capped at $900. That may help with some e-bike adoption, but tax credits can feel a bit abstract, and even with the discount, e-bikes, which typically run between $1,500 and $4,500, will still be out of the budgets of most Americans.

He’s not totally giving up on cars, though.

By the way, I am not envisioning a world without cars. People will still need to go on longer trips, disabled people will still need to get around, and goods will still need to be delivered. Cars will be channeled through a few routes in each city. In keeping with Schimmelpennink’s vision, transportation within the bicycles-only areas will be handled by a fleet of electronic taxis that will travel at speeds below 25 miles per hour. As for deliveries, many package deliveries in the United States can be handled by cargo e-bikes, which can transport hundreds of pounds at a time.

Shutting down some streets for bikes is key not only for safety, but also because the more inconvenient driving becomes, the more people will start to consider other options. Available to them is a free-of-charge mode of transportation that will often be faster than sitting in traffic and having to find a parking spot.

The only place he misses the mark is when it comes to people with disabilities, failing to recognize that for many, an ebike can be an effective mobility device, giving them more freedom to get around than they can by other means.

As he points out, however, the biggest obstacle to implementing a plan like that is the political pushback leaders would face from people who can’t even imagine a world with fewer cars.

Let alone none.

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More heartbreaking news from Wisconsin, as police have confirmed that the driver who killed five people and injured over 40 more by plowing through the Waukesha Christmas parade did it on purpose.

Thirty-nine-year old Milwaukee resident Darrell E. Brooks was reportedly involved in a domestic violence incident just minutes before the attack on a parade filled with innocent victims.

He is also accused of jumping bail for a previous incident.

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Seriously, our institutions have got to do better.

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Ted Faber offers a very brief tweet essay on bicycling.

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Tons of bikes. Yet nary a bear from deepest, darkest Peru in sight.

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But seriously, can you even be too hard on cars?

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Back in the days when every lane really was a bike lane.

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Evidently, parking in bike lanes is nothing new.

Or uniquely American.

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

A British paper accuses “abusive” cyclists of swearing at forest rangers attempting to roundup a herd of wild horses, as they carry out a 1,000-year tradition. Although Road.cc says it’s just anti-cyclist clickbait.

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Local

No news is good news, right?

 

State

San Diego plans to limit the number of ebike and e-scooter providers, with at least two of the six firms currently serving the city likely to be forced out.

 

National

Treehugger considers whether an e-cargo bike can serve as your one and only bike.

Pro cyclist Adam Myerson explains how to draft. Unfortunately, this one doesn’t appear to be on Yahoo, so you’re on your own if Bicycling blocks you.

Bike Hacks offers advice on how to pack your bike for your next move. Or better yet, just ride it and let someone else do the driving.

Kindhearted Kansas cops replaced an overly trusting teenager’s bicycle, after the boy loaned his bike to some schmuck who promised to return it, and didn’t.

An Oklahoma City man faces charges for firing a gun inside a Walmart when a security guard tried to stop him from walking out with a bicycle without paying for it.

A Chicago artist has gone from competing on bicycles to turning old bike parts into upcycled new items, using every part of the bike.

More mass traffic violence, as a Connecticut driver allegedly aimed his car at a group of people blocking the street to protest the Rittenhouse verdict on Saturday, hitting six people and injuring four. At least two states have passed legal protections for drivers who commit that kind of vigilante action against protestors in the roadway.

The overwhelming majority of New Yorkers would choose curbside dining over free parking, especially in Manhattan. Now if they’d just make the same choice for bike lanes, too.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A 77-year old agriculture professor at Louisiana State University was killed in a collision while riding his bike near campus on Saturday; as usual, there’s no mention of the driver.

 

International

A 140-decibel horn billed as “the world’s loudest bicycle horn” has now reached $4 million in international sales, six years after it was rejected on the UK’s equivalent of Shark Tank.

Traffic deaths declined an unprecedented 17% in the European Union during the pandemic last year, although that likely has more to do with traffic restrictions and lockdowns than any long-term change in driving habits.

Ankara, Turkey is proposing the city’s first bike plan, calling for 178 miles of bikeways by 2040.

A new study from the United Arab Emirates found that only two percent of local delivery riders wear helmets, and just four percent use bike lights after dark.

Injuries are up among middle-aged Aussie mountain bikers, as more men have taken to the trails during the pandemic.

 

Competitive Cycling

A new $250,000 race series will combine six of the top American gravel and mountain bike races, limited to the top 20 men and top 20 women.

Four-time Tour de France champ Chris Froome goes wading with the alligators on a Florida training ride.

A crowdfunding campaign has been set up for the family of rising Eritrean cyclist Desiet Kidane, who was killed by a driver while she was on a training ride earlier this month; so far it’s raised the equivalent of just $1582 of the $56,000 goal.

 

Finally…

An ebike for the balance bike set. Fighting air pollution one bike wheel at a time.

And if you’re an ex-con illegally carrying a gun on your bike, stay off the damn sidewalk, already.

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

Fed ebike tax rebate cut again, DTLA flyover would raise risk for Figueroa riders, and South Pasadena Community Ride

The up and down, back and forth tug-of war continues on the federal ebike tax rebate program.

What started out as a $1,500 tax credit on the purchase of an ebike was cut to $750 in a House committee, before being restored to the original $1,500, or 30% of the purchase price.

It’s now back down to a maximum $900, or 30% of the purchase price of a ebike up $4,000, after being cut yet again in a House committee.

Never mind that the bills also provide tax benefits up to $12,500 for an electric car, providing yet more assistance to many of those who need it least, while continuing the country’s harmful over reliance on motor vehicles.

And proving yet again that our elected leaders just don’t get the crisis we’re in, both in terms of traffic safety and congestion, and the most effective solutions to the climate emergency facing our country, and the world.

Although on the plus side, the bill would increase the pre-tax commuter benefit for riding a bike to work from $20 per month to a slightly less paltry $81.

Of course, all of that is moot if the bills don’t manage to get through both the House and the Senate.

And their prospects are just as murky as the heavy fog blocking my view out the window right now.

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I had thought this disastrous Metro highway project had been put out of our misery when it first raised its ugly head a few years ago.

Evidently not.

https://twitter.com/rootsimple/status/1456089321522405377

As this thread notes, freeway projects disproportionately target poorer neighborhoods and people of color, and this one is no exception.

It’s also true that it makes no sense to keep building massive freeway projects during a climate emergency, when it’s vital that we shift people out of their cars in favor of transit, walking and biking.

Spending millions on a project that will merely result in yet more induced demand, while destroying a neighborhood and greatly increasing the risk to people on bicycles is like lighting a match to our future and community.

Never mind that, like the thread points out, the many millions to be spent on this ramp, and the millions of dollars that have already been spent on consultants, would be better spent improving transit service and making it free for everyone.

Instead of a wasteful project that will only benefit a relative handful of people in cars, while ultimately making traffic and the environment worse.

You would think Metro would have learned from their disastrous widening of the 405 through the Sepulveda pass, which wasted $1.1 billion to make traffic congestion even worse than it was before.

But evidently, you would be wrong.

https://twitter.com/rootsimple/status/1456089328698855428

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South Pasadena will host a community bike ride this Saturday with state Senator Anthony Portantino and Mayor Pro Tem Michael Cacciotti.

Thanks to Michael Siegel for the heads-up. 

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Here’s the equivalent of 3,000 words on problem with the concept of shared responsibility.

Because the potential for harm is anything but equal.

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It’s hard to believe people on bikes gain a lot of supporters by blocking intersections, especially from the people stuck in their cars.

But it does make us more visible.

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Needlessly close call, as an impatient driver in the UK nearly hits an oncoming car head-on while trying to pass a group of bike riders occupying a narrow lane.

The riders are lucky neither driver swerved their way to avoid the near crash, which could have resulted in multiple injuries.

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

A man described as a male “Karen” approached a trio of Black women filming a TikTok video in Seattle, ordering them to pick up their phone “real quick” before pushing over their bicycle for no apparent reason.

https://www.tiktok.com/@hollymichelle206/video/7025687282413849902?referer_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.dailydot.com%2F&referer_video_id=7025687282413849902&refer=embed

Unbelievable. A Black man was racially targeted as he stopped briefly while riding a bike in his own Houston neighborhood, after a man told him he didn’t belong there and was making people nervous, then got out of his car and smashed the victim’s phone before brutally attacking him and slamming his head on the concrete. Yet his White attacker was arrested on a simple misdemeanor charge and released on a ridiculously insulting $100. More proof just how un-seriously authorities take attacks on people of color, and people on bicycles.

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Local

The LA Times’ Patt Morrison says, contrary to the gospel of Who Killed Roger Rabbit, we’re all responsible for the death of LA’s Red and Yellow car streetcar systems. Maybe we should take those billions Metro has budgeted for traffic-inducing highway projects and rebuild the streetcar system by taking a lane from every major street to lay down the tracks.

The LA City Council’s Public Safety Committee approved a motion calling for the city attorney to draft an ordinance banning bicycle chop shops on public property. Even though chop shops dealing in stolen bicycles are already illegal.

A recent survey conducted in English, Spanish, Mandarin and Korean shows 91% of people in the Los Angeles area support revitalizing the Los Angeles River, regardless of ethnicity.

A bike rider was critically injured while riding on Sherman Way in North Hollywood early Wednesday morning; the victim was apparently riding without lights two hours before sunrise. And for a change, the driver stuck around afterwards.

 

State

KCBS-2 reports Orange County has seen a whopping 500% increase in ebike injuries compared to this time last year. But they fail to consider whether ebike sales and usage have increased a similar, or even greater, amount, while sounding the alarm about the bikes supposed dangers.

A local Pacific Beach newspaper looks forward to Sunday’s CiclaSDias open streets event in the San Diego neighborhood.

A Berkeley paper remembers local artist Claudia Hoffberg, who passed away this past August at the age of 62; Hoffberg was noted for yarn-bombing bike racks throughout the Bay Area.

Tragic news from the Bay Area, where Alameda County Supervisor Wilma Chan was killed by a driver while walking her dog across a street at an intersection called out in the Alameda Vision Zero plan for a high rate of injuries at the hands and bumpers of motorists.

NIMBYs seem to feel a constant need to remind us that this isn’t Copenhagen, or Amsterdam, or some other bike-friendly city. Now you can add smallish Davis to that list, where 20% of all non-recreational trips are taken by bike.

 

National

PeopleForBikes is teaming with battery recycler Call2Recycle to establish the first industry-wide ebike recycling program.

This is who we share the road with. Former Las Vegas Raiders receiver Henry Ruggs III had a BAC over twice the legal limit and was driving 156 mph just two seconds before he slammed into a car driven by 23-year old Tina O. Tintor, killing her and her dog in a fiery crash; Ruggs was released by the team hours later, and faces up to 20 years behind bars.

Denver voters approved a $63.3 million transportation initiative to expand sidewalks and bike lanes, as well as fund street projects.

Kindhearted Oklahoma cops came to the rescue when someone stole a young woman’s bike by raising funds to buy her a new one.

If you build it, they will come. Once again, a once controversial bike lane has become a resounding success, as a nearly two mile, two-way bike lane in New York’s Astoria district now averages two riders every minute at peak hours, with a high of 2,300 trips in a single day.

NPR rides with a New York delivery rider, discovering the risk of injury and theft the app-based workers face on a daily basis, along with clients who too often take problems with the food out on them.

Heartbreaking story from Athens, Georgia, where a man was killed in a hit-and-run while riding his bike, eight years after his mother met the same fate while walking along a roadway; neither driver has been caught.

 

International

Once again, an Apple Watch has come to the rescue. An English bike rider credits his with saving his life when it automatically called for help after he was struck by a driver. Which is about the only reason I would want one. And yes, I do.

A billionaire British phone tycoon decries what he calls the “barbarian” conditions in an Italian hospital, after a blown bike tire exploded during a descent, leaving him fighting for his life.

That’s more like it. Dublin, Ireland responds to an increase in ridership by contracting for a pair of secure, indoor bicycle parking facilities capable of holding up to 300 bikes.

Needless to say, not everyone agrees with Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s commitment to build a 100% bikeable city, yet she won re-election anyway, despite the doubters. Although her campaign for president remains mired in the single digits.

More on the new Indian bike brand developed to preserve traditional crafts, with everything but the wheels, seat, front fork and drive train made from bamboo.

Aussie footballer Jordan De Goey is one of us, mountain biking with a friend somewhere in California as he faces charges for harassment and assault stemming from incident at a Manhattan nightclub.

 

Competitive Cycling

UCI released the final rankings for the past racing season, dominated by Tadej Pogačar and Wout van Aert on the men’s side, and Annemiek van Vleuten and Elisa Longo-Borghini for the women. Meanwhile, the US is nowhere to be seen in the top five nations on either side.

Hungary will finally host the first three stages of the Giro, two years after the original plans were scrapped because of the pandemic.

Congratulations to 20-year old Lauren Lackman, a junior at Colorado Mesa University, on winning the women’s Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships.

 

Finally…

Who needs batteries? Your next (really weird looking) ebike could run on hydrogen. Your next foldie could have folding wheels, too.

And riding a bike provides infinite headroom.

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

DTLA hit-and-run driver abandoned stolen car, US traffic deaths spike in 2021, and $1,500 federal ebike tax credit back in bill

More information on yesterday’s hit-and-run in Downtown Los Angeles.

The victim was riding an e-scooter against traffic when she was struck by the driver of a Chevy Spark; the impact threw her onto the sidewalk where she landed head-first.

She was hospitalized in the intensive care unit with severe head trauma, but is expected to survive.

And confirming yesterday’s speculation, the LAPD reports the car was stolen, which explains why the hit-and-run driver fled on foot while leaving the car behind.

An LAPD press release offered this description of the suspect.

The driver who fled was described as a 20- to 25-year-old man, 5 feet, 6 inches to 5 feet, 10 inches tall, weighing between 150 and 175 pounds with a tattoo of unknown writing on the right side of his chest. He was last seen wearing gray pants with a possible camouflage pattern.

Anyone with information is urged to contact LAPD Central Traffic Investigator Diaz at 213/833-3713, or email 36160@lapd.online. Calls made during non-business hours or on weekends can be made to 877/527-3247.

As always, there is a standing $25,000 reward for any hit-and-run resulting in serious injury in the City of Los Angeles.

Suspect photo from LAPD press release.

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Is anyone really surprised that US traffic deaths are up nearly 20% in the first six months of this year?

According to the press release below, that’s the largest six-month increase ever recorded, and the most deaths in the first six months of any year since 2006.

Meanwhile, a new AAA study shows fewer American drivers are running red lights or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, contradicting fears that stoned driving would spike as more states legalize cannabis.

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At last, there’s a little good news out of Washington, as the latest version of the federal infrastructure bill restores the original $1,500 ebike tax credit, which had been cut to just $750 in a House committee.

The credit would cover 30% of the purchase price of ebikes costing up to $5,000, with a declining percentage above that for bikes up to eight grand.

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The East Side Riders are combining a little Halloween fun with Vision Zero advocacy this Sunday.

There’s also an unrelated ride later in the day for nighttime Halloween partiers.

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Speaking of the East Side Riders, if anyone wonders why I’m such a longtime fan of the bike club, and founder John Jones III, all you have to do is watch this.

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Nice to see the L39ion of Los Angeles cycling team looking beyond bike racing to give back to the community, as they attempt to raise $200,000 to get more kids on bikes, and more bikes in schools.

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Fun video from Phil Gaimon, as he goes riding where the deer and the antelope — and moose and bear — play in Wyoming’s Grand Tetons National Park, which remains one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen.

And yes, I’ve gone swimming in that lake he finds.

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Now we have to worry about getting buzzed from above, too.

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

No bias here. An Encinitas paper continues attempting to blame the victim in the city’s largest legal settlement, as someone who didn’t see the crash insists she was invisible to the driver who hit her bike because of her alleged lack of lights and dark clothing.

Kansas City bike lanes are facing a governmental bikelash, as a city councilmember wants control over what lanes get built — or possibly removed — in her district, despite the city’s previously passed Complete Streets policy.

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

A man on the British Island of Jersey demands action after an ebike rider knocked his 14-year old grandson off his bicycle while passing on a narrow bike path, then left him lying there with a broken wrist while insisting he was too busy to stop.

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Local

Metro’s Regional Connector is expected to open next summer, along with a 700-foot esplanade compete with 40-foot wide walkway and bidirectional bike path.

Shockingly, Los Angeles is among the 25 American cities on track to surpass climate goals set in the 2015 Paris Agreement by 2025, even without doing anything to reduce motor vehicle traffic.

 

State

Streetsblog reports the common theme in the recent California Active Transportation Symposium was the need for planners to actually listen to the bike riders and pedestrians their project will affect. Let’s hope they heard that, because they too often don’t hear us. 

Redlands installs sharrows on a narrow street, even though studies show they’re actually worse than doing nothing.

A 19-year old Davis woman was critically injured when a driver allegedly ran a red light and slammed into her bicycle.

 

National

Consumer Reports offers tips on getting a good bike fit.

An automotive website says Trek’s new 28 mph Domain+ is more like a motorcycle with pedals than an ebike.

Singletracks says you’ve got to stop and smell the ancient ferns along your way.

Seattle’s Rad Power is now the $329 million behemoth of the ebike world, after the company’s latest round of financing brought in an additional $154 million, passing VanMoof as the best-funded ebike brand.

Zion National Park opened a new 10-mile mountain bike trail developed through a public-private partnership in an effort to spread the impact on the popular park.

It takes a special kind of schmuck to run down an eight-year old Utah kid on a bicycle, then leave him lying in the street without calling for help; fortunately, he wasn’t seriously injured.

The family of a six-year old Michigan boy have filed a $4 million lawsuit against their neighbors, alleging that one of the men shot him when he went to get his bike off the neighbor’s lawn earlier this year.

Harlem World Magazine looks back at the New York neighborhood’s 1896 Bicycle Parade, which was sponsored by the Evening Telegram newspaper.

The NYPD reported closing nearly half of complaints about cars illegally parked in bike lanes in less than 15 minutes, and a quarter of the complaints in less that five minutes — an “implausibly fast” rate that critics say is proof they’re closing the files without responding. In other words, they just don’t care about blocked bike lanes, or the safety of people who use them. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

New York has a long way to go to encourage multimodal commutes, with a decided lack of safe bike parking near transit stations. You know they have a problem when the city is compared unfavorably to Los Angeles.

Streetsblog asks why every street doesn’t have a bike lane, after a new report from the New York Department of Transportation shows that painted bike lanes improve safety by 32%, while protected bike lanes cut the risk of injury up to 60%.

The body discovered at the New Jersey HQ of Jamis Bikes we mentioned yesterday belonged to a 43-year old mother who had worked for the company for 20 years; she was allegedly murdered in a hammer attack by a 24-year old coworker who stole her credits cards, then later turned himself into the police.

Atlanta bike cops busted a murder suspect who had been on the run for eight days after he was spotted on a local pathway.

 

International

The BBC looks back at Major Taylor, bicycling’s first Black superstar, and questions why he’s still largely unknown outside of the bike community.

London police are asking anyone who lost a bike recently to contact them after they recovered 20 hot bikes and frames when they busted an alleged bicycle fence. I’ll be happy to take one of the Bromptons if nobody claims ’em.

A Welsh government minister says the country needs to stop the “us vs them” mentality on the streets to improve safety for people on bicycles, astutely adding that some drivers have behavior problems.

Pink Bike explores France’s secret bike parks.

 

Competitive Cycling

The first ever Into The Lion’s Den bike race founded by L39ion of LA’s Williams brothers will roll through the streets of Sacramento tomorrow, with a unique format where teams will represent their home cities.

Italian cyclist Nicola Bagioli is retiring at the ripe old age of 26 to devote his time to making soapstone pottery.

 

Finally…

That feeling when there’s nowhere to park your bike at the world climate conference. Now you, too, can own your very own bespoke bamboo bicycle for the equivalent of just $668.

And why just wear headphones when you can take your piano with you?

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

It’s Car Free Day, San Diego driver faces murder for meth-fueled death of Laura Shinn, and always carry ID on your bike

Happy International Car Free Day!

Metro Bike is offering a free bikeshare ride today to celebrate, along with steep discounts on 30 day and yearly passes.

And a European website says if there is a war on cars, Car Free Day is winning converts to the anti-car side.

So leave the car at home today.

Or better yet, declare your own personal war on cars, and trade it in for a new bike or ebike, and make it Car Free Day every day.

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A San Diego man faces years, if not decades, behind bars for killing a woman as she rode her bike.

Thirty-eight-year old Pacific Beach resident Adam David Milavetz is charged with murder for running down well-known architect Laura Shinn while high on meth as she rode her bike to work in a Balboa Park bike lane last July.

He faces an additional felony count of vehicular manslaughter while under the influence, giving jurors a choice of charges and potential sentences.

Milavetz, who works as a “420 mobilization tech” and delivery driver for a pair of cannabis dispensaries, entered a plea of not guilty to the charges; he has been held in custody without bail since his arrest.

He was arrested a month earlier for driving while high on meth.

And once again, authorities managed to keep a dangerous driver the road until it was too late.

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Momentum Magazine says there’s still a lot worth fighting for in the $3.5 trillion House infrastructure bill, even if Congress did cut the proposed $1,500 ebike tax credit in half.

The e-bike tax credit and other bicycle programs that make up the massive bill are as follows, and it signifies a welcome change and an indication of just how fast and how large e-bikes sales are growing:

  • E-bike tax credit: 15% on the purchase of new e-bikes (the first $5,000), up to $750 benefit value. The credit was originally proposed for 30%.
  • Bicycle commuter benefit: Allow use of pre-tax dollars to fund bike purchases and bike-share memberships.
  • E-bikes for business tax credit: An incentive of a tax credit of 30% for businesses to install e-bike charging stations
  • Funding to reconnect or enhance communities split apart by highway projects.
  • Opportunities to build a sustainable and complete bicycle network.

Meanwhile, drivers will continue to get a tax credit ten times that size for buying an electric car, as the government works to maintain the automotive hegemony on our streets.

And never mind that the prospect for the House bill aren’t looking good in the evenly split Senate, where Joe Manchin and Krysten Sinema are insisting on further steep cuts to the bill, even though it has already been reduced $1.5 trillion from the original proposal.

Slate asks what if Congress helped bicyclists instead of drivers for a change?

………

Yet another reminder to always carry ID when you ride.

Authorities in Sacramento are trying to identify a Spanish-speaking man who is trapped in a fugue state following a collision with a driver while riding his bicycle, and can’t even remember his own name.

But don’t rely on your wallet or cellphone, or anything else that can be easily stolen if you’re incapacitated in a crash; it may sound ghoulish, but it happens often enough to be a valid concern.

I always wear a Road ID when I ride. Or any other time I leave home.

I also keep emergency contact information written down on a slip of paper in my jersey pocket or seat bag; other people attach information on their shoes or directly to their bikes.

But do something. You don’t want your loved ones frantically searching for you if anything happens.

Thanks to “Zero Carbon” Kevin and Megan Lynch for clarifying where this took place.

………

Unless you have to share the road with LA drivers, that is.

………

If you build it, they will come. Women, too.

………

GCN examines whether we should be afraid of bicycles made by carmakers.

………

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

Police in the UK criticize the “depressing level of selfish and poor behavior” shown by motorists during a sting operation to catch drivers who pass too close to people on bicycles; a fifth of all drivers were stopped for violations.

Meanwhile, a bike rider in Cornwall, England shares video of repeated bad passes by drivers.

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

Police in Regina, Saskatchewan tackled a man off his bicycle as he attempted to flee, booking him on 11 counts including weapons charges, assault and possession of burglary tools.

………

Local

A Long Beach couple started a petition demanding safety improvements to Los Coyotes Diagonal after their son was killed by a suspected drunk driver while trying to cross the deadly street earlier this month, where far too many people have been killed in recent years — including a pair of bike riders just two years ago.

 

State

If you ride in the Santa Barbara area, the CHP will be distributing enough bike lights, reflectors and helmets for one thousand people in Isla Vista this evening.

An Oakland website examines why the area’s roads are among the deadliest in the state, and asks for their readers help in finding out.

Marin County drivers and officials are once again coming for the successful bike lane on the upper deck of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, after a study suggested that converting it back to a traffic lane could save drivers a whole eleven minutes, while costing bike commuters hours. Or forcing them back into cars. Sure, let’s just turn all the streets back over to cars. It’s not like there’s a climate or fatality crisis or anything to worry about.

 

National

National Geographic says there are good reasons to believe America’s pandemic bike boom will become a longterm trend.

A Tesla fan site explains how the carmaker’s Full Self-Driving Beta steers cars around bike riders and pedestrians. The problem is, Tesla is turning all of us into unpaid beta testers just by sharing the road with them, whether we like it or not. 

A Streetsblog op-ed says playable streets represent the next frontier in public spaces, with infrastructure and street furniture designed to inspire imagination.

A first-time ebike rider says the new 28 mph Specialized ebike won him over — especially the Garmin sensor feature that displays the position of cars around and behind the bike on a small screen on the handlebars. Although that maximum speed means a helmet is required in California, regardless of age, and it would be banned from separated bike paths.

Bicycling offers tips from the pros for beginning riders. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

A Nevada couple faces a shitload of charges for killing the wife of a Tesla co-founder as she rode her bike last July, then lying about who was behind the wheel; a TV reporter explains the driver is charged with reckless driving causing death, rather than vehicular manslaughter, because the former is a felony while the latter is just a misdemeanor. Thanks to Al Williams for the tip.

A suspected Arizona bike thief was killed after he dropped the bicycle to flee from police and ran out into traffic — and into the side of a box truck, before getting hit by another driver.

The Sierra Club magazine talks with Detroit bike riders about the difficulty of Biking While Black, even in a city that’s overwhelmingly African American.

Dayton, Ohio wants to destroy the 1892 building that housed the Wright Brothers first bike shop, saying it’s become a nuisance after falling into a state of “extreme disrepair.” Although once a historic site is gone, you can’t get it back.

They get it. A Bangor, Maine newspaper reminds us that pedestrian deaths aren’t statistics, they’re people. That goes for people on bicycles, too. Or anyone else who’s a victim of traffic violence.

Maryland is investing $16.8 million to fund 42 bike projects around the state. Although Amazon donated nearly half that amount to complete two bike trail segments near their Bellevue, Washington HQ2 alone.

 

International

The Finnish city of Turku is attempting to promote bicycling by experimenting with different types of secure bike parking, including public ebike charging cabinets that can automatically extinguish a battery fire.

If you can live without the extra bells and whistles and Garmins, you can get a new Chinese-made Tenways ebike right now on Indiegogo for less than half the price of the Specialized ebike.

Singapore Facebook users freak out after spotting someone riding a recumbent bike, accusing the low rider of courting death.

 

Competitive Cycling

Hats off to 23-year old Christopher Blevins, who became the first American to win a Mountain Bike World Cup race in 27 years on Sunday.

 

Finally…

That feeling when even a nine-foot fence and a pond aren’t enough to deter a bike thief. That feeling when you want an ebike, but secretly wish it was a motorcycle.

And don’t bother showing up for a Covid test if you’re not in a car.

………

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

Arrest made in fatal Vista Del Mar hit-and-run, PCH shoulder closing near Point Mugu, and feds cut ebike tax rebate

It looks like the LAPD got their man.

Police arrested 39-year old Darwin Dantzler for the hit-and-run death of a mother as she carried her three-year old son across Vista Del Mar last weekend.

Wendy Galdamez Palma was attempting to make her way from the beach to her car parked on the other side of the deadly roadway. She reportedly turned away from the onrushing car, sacrificing herself to save her child.

Palma would not have had to cross the street if city leaders had the courage to keep a road diet in place that shifted parking to the west side of the street to protect beachgoers, after a 16-year old girl was killed crossing the street several years ago.

The city settled a lawsuit over that crash for $9.5 million.

Palma’s death will likely cost Los Angeles a lot more, after city leaders caved in to demands from angry pass-through drivers used to using the street as a free-flowing  freeway bypass, ripping out the road diet and returning Vista Del Mar to its previous dangerous state.

And making another death virtually inevitable.

Authorities showed just how seriously they don’t take traffic crime in California, releasing Dantzler on a remarkably low $50,000 bail, given the seriousness of his crime.

Then again, he faces a maximum of just four years behind bars for felony hit-and-run. And if he’s convicted, he’ll likely serve less than half of that with good behavior.

Meanwhile, Wendy Galdamez Palma was — allegedly — given the death penalty at Dantzler’s hands.

And her husband and kids will have to somehow find a way to go on without her.

………

Caltrans will be closing a section of shoulder on southbound PCH in Ventura County for several months to repair damaged retaining walls.

If you ride through that area, you can expect to share the right lane with motorists.

But at least they’ll be dramatically lowering the speed limit through the construction zone. Let’s just hope drivers obey it.

Especially when someone on a bike is in front of them.

………

PeopleForBikes is urging everyone to voice your support for a proposed federal ebike tax credit and bike commuter benefit.

Although Treehugger argues, correctly, that ebike incentives are laughable compared to those for electric cars — especially after the House Ways and Means Committee cut the proposed benefit in half to just 15% of the purchase price, with a max of a lousy $750.

But at least that’s $750 we wouldn’t get otherwise.

Meanwhile, Calbike wants you to email Governor Newsom and urge him to sign AB 122, aka the Bicycle Safety Stop Bill, which will allow bike riders to treat stop signs as yields. Which most of us already do anyway.

AAA and the CHP had an outsized influence on our last governor. Hopefully they won’t oppose this bill. Or if they do, let’s hope Newsom listens to more enlightened voices and signs it anyway

And congratulate him on keeping his job while you’re at it.

It never hurts to suck up a little.

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Valley Blvd is well on its way to getting shiny new curb-protected bike lanes.

https://twitter.com/boyonabike62/status/1438329554058186753

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More proof, as if you need it, that Bike Index works.

So what are you still waiting for? Get free lifetime registration now, before you need it.

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This could be huge.

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Evidently, the new bike lanes on the Brooklyn Bridge pass inspection.

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Milan is reclaiming space from cars, and giving it back to people.

So what the hell are we waiting for?

https://twitter.com/_dmoser/status/1438388469785575431

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We may have to deal with LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about avian dive bombers.

https://twitter.com/gplama/status/1437311200002408451

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

I don’t even know what to say about this one, as a cop tells someone on a bicycle that it’s not safe to ride in a bike lane, because of all the cars in it. Thanks to Keith Johnson for the forward.

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

Be on the lookout for bike-riding Santa Monica cello thieves.

Dallas police are looking for a shirtless, purple-pantsed, pistol-packing bike rider who fired a shot into a vehicle Wednesday afternoon.

………

Local

Metro Bike bikeshare is now brought to you by Doordash.

Los Angeles approved plans to make street improvements, such as bulbouts, speed humps and traffic circles, to deter street racing, which should improve safety for everyone by slowing all traffic.

CD14 Councilmember Kevin de León will host an open house to discus plans for the NoHo to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit through Eagle Rock on October 2nd; if you live, work or ride in the area — or want to — show up to support the Beautiful Boulevard Complete Streets plan.

 

State

Caltrans offered an update on $100 million in funding for Complete Streets projects on state roadways, including three projects in Los Angeles County, as well as others in Orange, San Diego and San Bernardino counties.

Yuba Bicycles is moving its HQ to San Juan Capistrano, with a couple new jobs in the front office.

Chico’s Sierra Nevada Brewing is working with a number of bike brands to give away a couple of custom bicycles, to raise funds and awareness for a pair of nonprofits working to repair severe damage to trail systems due to flooding and wildfires in Northern California and North Carolina.

 

National

Bicycling offers tips for better trail etiquette on your next off-road expedition. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

A Streetsblog op-ed offers advice on how to take on the NIMBYs, and beat opponents of street safety.

A physicians website argues that riding a bicycle to work can make you a better doctor.

Cycling News takes a deep dive into the “unique sizing, geometry and design of gravel bikes.”

Your next bike helmet could filter the air you breathe while you ride.

A new app promises to help you get your bike fit right.

Scary news from Alaska, where a doctor is urging everyone to leave their bikes at home because all the hospitals are full of Covid patients, and they may not be able to treat you if you get hurt.

You’d think it would be hard to go belly up in the middle of a worldwide bike boom, but a Denver bike shop would beg to differ.

An Oklahoma driver had his manslaughter conviction and 19-year sentence for killing a 12-year old, bike-riding Cherokee boy overturned, after the state Supreme Court ruled it had no jurisdiction on Indian lands.

A 74-year old Wisconsin man pled guilty to the hit-and-run death of a teenage boy riding a bicycle on the eve of his trial; he allegedly drove off after the crash, then returned to slowly drive by the crash site before fleeing again, leaving the boy to die in a ditch on the side of the road.

Shades of Vista Del Mar, as a Chicago bike rider was killed by a hit-and-run driver on a street where parking protected bike lanes were ripped out eight years ago, just because homeowners wanted to park next to the curb.

NatGeo sings the praises of Minneapolis as a bicycling city and a leader in the urban bicycling movement.

This one will put a smile on your face, as an Indianapolis paper profiles a 72-year old woman who’s famous locally for riding her pink bicycle everywhere she goes in her neighborhood.

A DC writer argues that every block matters in the fight for safer streets and a better climate.

Nice story from South Carolina, where a young boy riding an old bike crashed into a stranger’s car because he didn’t have any brakes, so instead of screaming at the boy, the man bought him a new bicycle, presumably with brakes that work.

 

International

Cycling Weekly offers a beginner’s guide to shifting.

A woman riding through Mexico discovers firsthand what it’s like to run out of water in the middle of the desert; fortunately, she stumbled on total strangers who saved her.

Britain’s ex-health secretary is one of us, as he was spotted riding a Lime ebike through Trafalgar Square after being forced out of the government over an affair, while leaving his wife to suffer through long Covid alone. Schmuck.

Paris continues to free itself from the tyranny of motor vehicles, as Slate talks with David Belliard, the city’s adjunct mayor for transportation and public space.

Time is running out for Afghanistan’s women’s cycling community following the Taliban takeover of the country; a campaign to evacuate and resettle 28 bicyclists and their families has raised nearly $100,000 of the $250,000 goal.

 

Competitive Cycling

L39ion of Los Angeles founder Justin Williams is attempting to jumpstart the moribund heart of American cycling with a one-day, $100,000 crit in Sacramento next month, including equal payouts for men and women.

Of course, the way they’ve performed this season, there’s a good chance L39ion will just win all of that money back.

 

Finally…

One sure sign you’ve got too much money — paying $65 for an ounce and a half of chain lube; then again, what else would you use on your $12,700 ebike? Your next bike could come complete with a retractable plastic roof.

And always ride with a friend.

………

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

$10 million ebike rebate added to CA budget, onerous bikeshare insurance bill, and Beverly Hills gives up on bikeshare

This is beginning to look like a watershed year for bicycle bills in Sacramento.

Calbike writes that a proposed $10 million program to help Californians buy ebikes has made it into the latest draft of next year’s state budget.

SACRAMENTO – CalBike is thrilled to announce that legislators approved a $10 million e-bike incentive program in next year’s state budget. Funded as part of the state’s campaign to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles, the program will help thousands of Californians get access to e-bikes to replace car trips. Bikes eligible will include bikes “designed for people with disabilities; utility bicycles for carrying equipment or passengers, including children; and folding bicycles.”

It joins bills to decriminalize jaywalking (AB 1238) and allow bike riders to treat stop signs as yields (AB122), which both pass out of committee in the state senate last week.

………

Calbike and the LACBC are also stepping up efforts to oppose AB371, which would force bikeshare and e-scooter providers to extend insurance coverage to their customers, which could have a chilling effect on micromobility.

This is why we are frightened by a bill in the state Senate that could kill shared bike and scooter systems. It would require nonprofits, government agencies, and private companies that operate shared bike and scooter systems to extend their liability coverage to the sole negligence or reckless behavior of a rider, setting a legal precedent that no other industry is subject to. Just like a rental car company cannot be held liable for the reckless actions of their drivers (Graves Amendment), neither should shared bike and scooter operators Further, the proposed form of insurance would be highly susceptible to fraud due to the low cost and ease of staging accidents, with minimal burden of proof.

The bill would even apply to the nonprofits and government agencies that just got funded to operate bike share systems with some of the $20 million in Clean Mobility Options grants. The Air Resources Board clearly understands the potential of these systems; the legislature should also, and abandon this attempt to impose a fatally impractical requirement.

Let’s hope they get it.

While more probably can and should be done to protect bikeshare and scooter users, and those around them, this is not the time to make them financially untenable and drive micromobility users back into their cars.

………

You can kiss Beverly Hills Bike Share goodbye.

The tony city is joining a growing list of SoCal cities in pulling up stakes on its docked bikeshare system at the end of this month.

I wouldn’t hold your breath on those new shared mobility options, though.

At least not as far as bikes or scooters are concerned.

Thanks to David Drexler for the forward.

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Cable news outlet Spectrum News 1 highlighted Walk ‘n Rollers bike repair hub and free bicycle distribution program.

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

No bias here. The mayor of an Iowa town is begging for lawsuits, let alone funerals, after posting a large sign telling drivers not to stop for bike riders where a popular bike trail crosses a two lane highway. Even though he insists he rides a bike himself, and only wants to improve safety by encouraging people in cars to kill people on bikes just keep going. Sure, let’s go with that.

A London school is using traffic cones to block a new bikeway, claiming bicyclist are endangering the students — never mind that they’re endangering their own students and parents who ride bikes to school.

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

An English ebike rider with defective brakes walked without a day behind bars after he was sentenced for recklessly weaving in and out of traffic before running a red light and crashing into a car; he suffered serious head injuries in the crash.

………

Local

Los Angeles was ranked as the nation’s 14th most future-focused city, based in part on LA’s bike score. No, really.

KCRW considers what a post-pandemic Los Angeles will look like, as UCLA architecture and urban design professor Dana Cuff points to CicLAvia as a sign of hope.

LA Taco offers a photographic look at the annual Chief Lunes Fireworks Party Ride through DTLA and Glendale on the 3rd.

Pasadena is looking for input on the city’s proposed pedestrian plan.

KNBC4 sounds its “bulbous bike horn” over the return of CicLAvia in Wilmington next month.

 

State

There’s justice for a fallen San Diego bike rider, after Abbas Karama Shariff copped a plea in the hit-and-run death of 35-year-old Daryl Treadwell in May of last year; he’ll be sentenced to the maximum penalty of four years behind bars.

A new study from San Diego’s Juiced Bikes confirms that riding a ped-assist bike over challenging terrain burns as many calories as a game of basketball. Playing, that is, not watching.

Streetsblog San Francisco calls Oakland’s decision to keep the protected bike lanes on Telegraph Ave a “resounding win for safety.”

Bike riders in Los Altos are calling a new freeway expansion project a death zone, with riders on the Foothill Expressway now expected to cross left over double right turn lanes in order to keep going straight.

Sad news from Chico, after it turned out the bikepacker killed by a grizzly bear while camping in Montana earlier this week was a 65-year old woman from the NorCal city.

 

National

Bicycling says yes, there’s a shortage of bicycles and parts due to the pandemic bike boom, but you don’t have to be a jerk about it. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

Outdoor Life rates trunk-mounted bike racks.

A pair of Nebraska nonprofits formed the state’s first all-girl mountain bike team to encourage young women to get out and ride.

There’s a special place in hell for the owner of a historic St. Louis building, who is threatening to evict a bike charity by Monday after the bicycles they’d planned to donate to disadvantaged kids were damaged in a partial building collapse last summer — even though the owner was renting them space in a building that had been condemned in 2013. They estimate it will take another $40,000 to clean and repair the bikes so they can be safely ridden.

A Houston rabbi is recovering from multiple broken bones after the bike path he was riding on ended without warning, and he crashed into some large traffic barrels that were lining the roadway.

A Virginia bike shop owner calls the state’s new law requiring drivers to change lanes to pass someone on a bicycle “a blessing,” saying most people didn’t know how to judge the previous three-foot passing requirement.

Good for them. Inspired by a five-year old amputee, a group of Lafayette, Louisiana high school students are hoping to take a product they developed for a robotics competition to market; the adaptation kit they created can be added to any bicycle in minutes to assist people with missing or compromised legs to ride a bike.

 

International

A group of young Bolivians are battling pollution by forming the first bicycle messenger and delivery service in the smog-choked city of Cochabamba.

This is the cost of traffic violence. An eleven-month old baby is dead and his father hospitalized after they were collateral damage in a collision between the drivers of a supercar and an SUV in Vancouver, when one of the vehicles slammed into a group of pedestrians.

I want to be like them when I grow up. Canada’s Royal Academy of Octogenarian Cyclists Facebook group is for people over 80 who still love to ride a bike.

When my wife and I visited London several years ago, we quickly learned walking around Parliament and Westminster Abbey meant taking your life in your hands. Now plans are in place to cut Westminster speed limits to just 20 mph to improve safety and encourage more people to walk and bike.

Call it a royal tandem, as the queen’s daughter-in-law Sophie, Countess of Wessex, took to two wheels to support a “new initiative to tackle rising unemployment among people who are blind or partially sighted,” with the program’s appeal manager as stoker.

A British motorcycle rider got three years behind bars for fleeing the scene after slamming into a bicycle rider when he clipped the wheel of another bicycle and sliding across the roadway. He was arrested after he returned to the site of the crash on a borrowed bicycle, and was chased down by a cop who had to borrow another bike to catch him.

A new Austrian study confirms what most of us already suspected — suburban living is the worst for carbon emissions.

Victoria, Australia will give new See.Sense smart lights that collect roadway data to 1,000 bike riders in an effort improve safety for bicyclists.

 

Competitive Cycling

Yesterday’s Tour de France winner claimed his fourth career stage win, on the most prestigious stage of the world’s most prestigious bike race. Meanwhile, no change in the yellow jersey, even if it did crack a bit.

Germany cyclist Tony Martin was forced to abandon the Tour after crashing into a ditch.

Sadly, we don’t have to worry about spoilers in women’s cycling. Twenty-one-year old Dane Emma Norsgaard won her first stage in the Giro Donne by just edging out SoCal’s Coryn Rivera on a course that circled Lake Como. No word on whether they waved to George and Amal Clooney as they went by.

Pink Bike examines how technology pioneered in mountain bikes is making its way into pro cycling.

Flo Bikes looks forward to this weekend’s Mountain Bike Nationals. They’re being held at the Colorado resort where I learned to ski, back when dinosaurs still roamed the earth.

A 29-year old Poway man with cerebral palsy is on his way to Tokyo to compete on the US cycling team in the Paralympic Games.

 

Finally…

Police seldom have much of a sense of humor when you blow through the barricades and nearly run over a bunch of bike cops. Los Angeles bike riders have to watch out for LA drivers; bike riders in Maine have to beware of itchy caterpillars.

And this is what the latest installment in the Fast & Furious franchise looks like to a traffic safety advocate.

………

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

Carlsbad GOP candidate gets proposed ebike bill all wrong, sexist anti-bike bias, and the high cost of traffic violence

No bias here.

A Republican candidate for the California Assembly from Carlsbad takes aim at a proposal to provide a tax rebate for part of the purchase price on a new ebike.

The proposal, AB 117, is supported by current Assembley Member Tasha Boerner Horvath, whom she hopes to unseat.

At a price-point anywhere from $1,500 to $4,000, they are a noteworthy investment, but should the government be subsidizing these purchases without accountability? Absolutely not. Yet Assemblymember Tasha Boerner Horvath wants to spend unlimited amounts of money to do just that.

Maybe someone should tell her about the massive rebates the state already gives to people who buy electric cars.

But rudeness, rather than money, seems to be her chief objection.

Worse, many of us have witnessed near collisions between e-bikes or e-scooters and vehicles. Personally, I have been almost struck while crossing the street in a crosswalk, and many people have observed near-catastrophes on a daily basis.

So, from her point of view, we should make it harder to buy ebikes, because someone almost struck her while riding one.

Because apparently, no one on a regular bicycle — or a scooter, skateboard, roller skates or running shoes — would ever do such a dastardly deed.

And she’s evidently never experienced the way rude, aggressive and/or inattentive drivers treat people in crosswalks, either.

But the most frightening part, from her bizarre perspective, is that the bill would provide up to $10 million in state tax rebates. Never mind that California currently has an $85 billion — yes billion, with a b — tax surplus.

Which, by my English major math calculations, works out to less than 0.012% of that surplus.

Now the state government wants to fund incentives for purchasing electric bicycles — atop significant out-of-control spending already happening at the state level.

Think I’m kidding? One of Boerner Horvath’s latest bills — Assembly Bill 177 — states that the purpose of her newest taxpayer-funded program is to “fund…incentives for purchasing electric bicycles” under the guise of an “air quality improvement program.”

But wait, there’s more!

Despite Horvath’s empty virtue signaling to the environmentalists, the government should not be incentivizing us to purchase electric bicycles when they are already affordable and available. That’s the job of Lime, Bird, and other companies in the San Diego region. Plus, those companies are held accountable by the cities in which they operate — not by nameless bureaucrats in Sacramento.

Maybe $1,500 to $4,000 — or a lot more, actually — is affordable to her. But it’s a major stretch for many of the constituents she hopes to represent.

And she apparently has no idea what Lime, Bird and other e-scooter providers actually do.

Or what bikeshare is, for that matter.

Then she trots out the usual bike hater screeds.

This legislation is a disaster in the making. Beyond the notion that this isn’t the role of government, there are no safety precautions, no spending limits, and no licensing requirements. Above all, there is no accountability to determine the efficacy of the program or its reduction in air pollution.

So, she wants to license ebike riders. Or maybe all bike riders.

Never mind that California already regulates ebikes into three distinct classes, with increasing levels of safety restrictions and requirements.

And did we mention that $10 million spending limit?

As for reducing air pollution, she’s got a point. Everyone knows the paltry electricity consumed by a little ebike, and its burrito eating rider, would create far more emissions than your average massive gas-guzzling SUV.

Right?

Let’s hope that, contrary to her wishes, AB 117 does see the light of day.

And the very confused and uninformed 

Ebike photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels.

………

Then again, they’re blaming ebikes in New York, too.

On the other hand, Cycling Savvy discusses ebike etiquette so you won’t be one of those few ebike-riding jerks justifiably complains about.

As opposed to the overwhelming majority who aren’t.

………

You owe it to yourself to take a few minutes to read this hard-hitting op-ed from a New Zealand environmental sociologist and bike rider.

When white men start using a bike, I often think they experience a sort of status shock. They see what marginalisation feels like: the dehumanisation, the fear, the threat of violence. If you ride a bike and you belong to another group who already lives with this threat, there is a familiarity to it all…

Being a cyclist often reminds me of being a woman. If someone hurts me it’s my fault because I didn’t wear the right thing, I didn’t defer to them and “know my place”, and I didn’t just smile and put up with their abuse. Power imbalances foster bullying.

So, avoid them if you can, the dehumanising stereotypes. All the comparisons to vermin this past fortnight on conservative radio and social media – cockroaches, rats, lice, etc –  have been way out of line. Even the fixation with lycra. It’s something male sports cyclists usually wear. The obsession with men wearing tight revealing clothing in public so often veers into an obviously homophobic place. Just don’t.

Seriously, read the whole thing.

Because it probably matters more than you think.

………

This is the cost of traffic violence.

Bystanders had to lift a pickup off an 11-year old boy, after an alleged drunk driver ran the kid down while he was riding in a crosswalk, then continued on dragging the boy underneath his truck for a “considerable distance,” leaving him with life-threatening injuries.

One of the top dog handlers missed out on this year’s Westminster Dog Show after his van was rear-ended in Laramie, Wyoming while driving ten canine competitors cross-country to the show; he ended up in the hospital, but fortunately, the dogs were uninjured. Which goes to show how much safer cars could be if everyone inside just rode in the human equivalent of a dog crate.

Speaking of Wyoming — Wyoming, Delaware in this case — a 74-year old man was killed in a collision when he was run down by a driver while mowing his lawn when a driver lost control of her SUV, pinning him underneath.  Naturally, no charges have been filed yet, because it was just an oopsie.

A Canadian woman complains that the drunken hit-and-run driver who fatally rear-ended her 27-year old son as he rode his bicycle could be out of prison in just one and a half years, despite a BAC over twice the legal limit after an admitted 13 drinks that day prior to getting behind the wheel — leaving a hole in her family that can never be filled.

In another form of violence due to motor vehicles, the grave of Robert Meacham, who rose from slavery to Florida state senator and helped establish the state’s public school system, is likely buried unmarked and unremembered under a Tampa parking lot, along with the bodies of hundreds of other Black people.

………

Sarah Silverman is one of us now.

………

GCN dives into the endless debate over roadies versus gravel bikes (gravelies?).

They also consider whether Shimano’s integrated shifters and brake levers were the greatest bike innovation of all time.

………

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

A road raging woman from an undisclosed location got out of her car to demand a young bike-riding woman give her “everything” in compensation for an invisible scratch to her apparently very expensive car.

………

Local

Streets For All wants you to call on the city council’s Transportation Committee to support walking, bicycling, and micromobility and maximizing traffic signal priority for the Expo Line, as part of the LA’s Green New Deal, which could finally be getting long overdue traction.

A year ago, LA Times readers were asked to envision life post-pandemic, but only one lonely response addressed how nice life was with fewer cars on the streets. The simple fact is, if we go back to life as normal pre-pandemic, with cars maintaining hegemony over our streets, we will have failed. And looking outside, it appears we already have.

 

State

Two armed Orange County men were busted after blocking the path of a pair of Garden Grove bike riders with their car, robbing the woman of her bike, pack and cellphone while her male companion bravely rode away; police seized six guns from their home, was well as gun parts.

Family-owned Hesperia bike shop Hi-Desert Bikes is shuttering in August after 30 years in business, sending its owner into an unplanned early retirement.

 

National

If you still long for the little red wagon of your youth, Radio Flyer is riding to the rescue with a pair of fat tire ebikes.

Streetsblog marks Pride Week by examining how the design and planning needs of LGBTQ+ can make public spaces more inclusive.

Livestrong recommends this years best bike locks, starting at just $14.99.

An Anchorage paper says bicycling is a great way to visit different Alaskan towns, while finishing your ride with a local brew.

The Las Vegas bicycling community joined family members in remembering the five bike riders killed by a meth-fueled truck driver, six months after the fatal crash.

The popular bike repair website written by the late Sheldon Brown could be in jeopardy, as the Boston bike shop where he worked, which maintains the site, is shutting down.

More on the custom handmade bicycle President Biden got on the cheap for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson from Philadelphia’s Bilenky Cycle Works at a steep presidential discount, and in record time. And no, he didn’t get a Wikipedia printout in returnThanks to k_david for the link.

Kindhearted members of a West Virginia police community group bought a new bicycle for a young boy, after the Spider-man bike he got for Christmas was stolen off his porch.

Kindhearted New Orleans cops dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a nine-year old boy, after his was stolen when he was pushed off it by a group of older boys.

A Florida artist makes a statement for inclusion in bicycling with a 215-foot Ocala mural depicting bike riders of all ages, genders, nationalities and abilities.

 

International

Vancouver bike riders shed their clothes for the city’s first post-pandemic edition of the World Naked Bike Ride. And in New Orleans, tooAt least, we can hope it’s post-pandemic, despite rising overseas variants and a high level of unvaxxed people in the US and Canada.

They kinda get it. An editorial in Toronto’s Globe & Mail unexpectedly emerged from behind the paper’s paywall, asking — and attempting to answer — what if cities were designed for the safety of people, instead of the convenience of cars. Although cities could go way beyond Vision Zero, and consider designing them for the convenience of people, as well. 

An Oxford, England writer complains that the way the media reports on crashes involving bike riders, including use of the word accident, just fuels the conflict between bicyclists and motorists.

A heartbroken English mother called on parents to pay more attention to their bike-riding children, after her 12-year old son was killed by a driver the first time he rode his bike on the streets, while being watched by her estranged husband.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for forwarding this survey gathering responses from disabled bike riders in the UK; if you live or ride in the UK with a disability, or care for someone who does, they want to hear from you.

Advocates in Lagos, Nigeria are calling for more robust provisions. policies and affordability for non-motorized transportation, including walking and bicycling.

Bike riders in Jakarta are calling for a bicycle revolution in Indonesia’s capital city, as the governor calls for building 310 miles of bike lanes, as well as a $56,000 monument to bicycling in the city’s main thoroughfare.

An Aussie writer says riding a bicycle is sweet freedom, even if it might kill her. And it lets her eat more of her wife’s cakes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bike racing returned to Tulsa, Oklahoma for the first time since the pandemic reared its ugly head, only to face near total domination from our hometown L39ion of Los Angles, which took all three men’s podium spots and the top two women’s spots at the Tulsa Arts District Crit. And swept the top spot on all three individual race titles and omniums on Sunday.

Congratulations to Colorado’s Riley Amos, who became the first American man to win a U23 World Cup mountain bike race.

Cycling Weekly writes that new unions for both men’s and women’s pro cyclists could be about to change the shape of top level bike racing.

 

Finally…

Your next bikepacking campsite could be a portable treehouse trailer towed behind your bike. And probably not the best idea to ride a children’s bike along the crowded train platform you’re supposed to be guarding.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

School of Rock drummer killed in Chicago bike crash, support urged for CA ebike rebate bill, and San Diego bike path opens

Before we start, a special thanks to Bicycle Attorney Thomas Forsyth for renewing his ad on this site for the coming year. 

Remarkably, despite the pandemic, all three of our sponsors have renewed their ads for another year. 

Which matters because it’s their support, along with yours, that makes BikinginLA possible. 

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More heartbreaking news about another needless loss.

Keven Clark, who played drummer Freddy “Spazzy McGee” Jones in 2003’s School of Rock, was killed when he was struck by a driver while riding his bike yesterday.

The 32-year old musician was just 12 years old when he costarred with Jack Black and Joan Cusack in the hit movie, despite a lack of acting experience.

He had just formed a new band that performed live for the first time over the weekend.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times,

Clark was riding a bicycle early Wednesday when he was struck and killed at a notoriously dangerous intersection on the Northwest Side. He was hit by a Hyundai Sonata around 1:20 a.m. in the 2600 block of North Western Avenue, Chicago police said.

Paramedics found him on Logan Boulevard and took him to Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 2:04 a.m., according to the Chicago Fire Department and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

The driver of the Hyundai, a 20-year-old woman, was issued several citations, police said.

A report in the Chicago Tribune alleges Clark was hit after running a red light.

Maybe someday, we’ll decide that too many people have died because of motor vehicles and the people who drive them, and actually do something about it.

But like gun violence, we seem to just talk about it, and look the other way.

School of Rock poster from Wikipedia.org.

Thanks to Tim Rutt and Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

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Calbike is calling on everyone to contact your state assemblymember to support AB 117, the E-Bike Affordability Bill.

The bill would provide purchase incentives to increase the affordability of ebikes by through subsidies for up to 10,000 people, similar to the $7,000 subsidies the state provides to buyers of electric cars.

Combined with a proposed federal tax rebate for ebike buyers, it could dramatically cut the cost of ebikes to replace motor vehicle use.

Maybe a jump in ebikes would finally push more California cities to provide safe spaces to ride them.

And yes, I’m talking to you, Los Angeles.

Thanks to Keith Johnson for the tip.

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San Diego cut the ribbon on the barrier-protected Rose Creek bike path, adding another two miles to the 44 mile Coastal Rail Trail.

I definitely could have used that when I lived down there years ago.

Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up.

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A new video from Streets For All examines the true cost of LA’s freeway obsession.

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This is who we share the road with.

A road raging Maserati driver in DC got out of his car and opened fire on a woman with her two kids in the car, then apparently turned and shot at witnesses in another car.

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A bike rider was injured during a New York bicycle protest to mark the first anniversary of George Floyd’s murder at the hands of Minneapolis police, after he jumped on the hood of a Volkswagen as the driver tried to push through the crowd of protesters.

Meanwhile, a second bike rider was injured by the driver as they tried to speed away.

New York police followed that up by “inadvertently” sideswiping another bike rider while pursuing the Volkswagen driver.

But at least it’s nice to know the cops didn’t do it on purpose, anyway.

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

Bike riders get just 22% of a Brooklyn street space, even though they more than equal the number of motor vehicles that use it.

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

A Catholic bishop in Oakland was robbed at gunpoint by a man who demanded his money and bishop’s ring before speeding off on a bicycle.

A Mad City woman was busted for throwing a bicycle at another person during a large disturbance. No word on whether she was actually riding it or if she just grabbed the nearest thing she could throw.

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Local

The Source offers a preview of today’s Metro Board meeting, which would finalize the route for the NoHo to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit line along Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock, as well as consider highway funding and free bus and train fares for students and low income people.

Child soap star Scarlett Fernandez is one of us, although she may regret that right now; the 11-year old General Hospital actor had surgery on both arms after crashing her bike, as well as getting stitches on her chin and suffering four broken teeth.

 

State

A Half Moon Bay rancher and city councilmember alleges he was racially profiled as “a dirty Mexican” by a sheriff’s deputy as he rode his bike into the city; the sheriff claims the deputy knew who he was and was merely concerned that he was riding recklessly.

Sacramento may require e-scooter users to scan their driver’s licenses in an attempt to stop underage users. Although that would also block any adult without one.

Nice story from Redding, where the community got together to raise funds to buy a new ebike for a school security guard and coach who suffers from a hereditary form of neuropathy; after the fundraiser surpassed the $2,500 goal, a local organization said they would pay for the bike, and use the funds to customize it for his disability.

 

National

Writing for The Hill, a trio of top-level advocates make the case for sidewalks, trails and bike lanes are essential transportation infrastructure belonging in the new transportation bill currently being written in Congress; the bill was later amended to include $7.2 billion for infrastructure for bicyclists and pedestrians, as well as setting aside another $1.6 billion for vulnerable road users.

A new report from the Brookings Institute says we can’t beat climate change without rethinking land use, calling for a return to “traditional people-centered neighborhood designs” that will reduce the need to drive.

Trek is recalling over 340,00 Bontrager pedals in the US and Canada that can fall off if they’re not properly installed.

Seattle Bike Blog says the bike shortage induced by the coronavirus bike boom will probably continue into next year.

An Idaho mountain bike park finally opened after being delayed a year by wildfires that raged through the West.

An army vet stopped in Idaho to inspire students at a school for the deaf and blind; the totally blind woman is bicycling across the US, aided by sighted guides in front and behind her.

An associate professor at Ohio’s Bowling Green State University will ride across the US this summer to raise funds for public education; Dr. Chris Willis will take the Adventure Cyclists Association’s northern tier route, passing through 51 school districts he hopes to help fund at the end of the trip. You can donate to his trip here. Thanks again to Tim Rutt.

A Streetsblog op-ed calls on the State of New York to pass a bill allowing for wider e-cargo bikes; current law limits them to 36 inches, while a proposed bill would legalize cargo trikes up to 55 inches — far more than the standard 48″ width.

A Pennsylvania school built a school bike shop in honor of a 17-year old former student, who found himself through the school’s mountain biking program, but was killed in a collision while coming home from his dream job at Trek.

 

International

A new anti-theft device can set off an alarm if anyone moves your bike, and provide GPS and WiFi tracking to help recover it if it’s stolen.

Police in Victoria, British Columbia recovered a custom-built bicycle donated to a special needs kid by the Make-A-Wish Foundation, hours after putting out a call for the public’s help in finding the stolen bike.

Montreal has more Stanley Cups than Toronto. And more bike lanes, too.

Queen guitarist Brian May credits riding his bicycle with saving his life following a heart attack he believes was caused by Covid-19.

Unbelievable. A Scottish hit-and-run driver walks without a single day behind bars for killing a bike rider, then taking his car to two repair shops in an effort to cover up the crime.

Italian bike maker Colnago sold a digital NFT of one of its bike frames for $8,600, which is $2,300 more than the frame itself sells for. And you can’t ride it, either.

 

Competitive Cycling

Giro GC leader Egan Bernal cracked in Wednesday’s stage 17, but ended up losing just three seconds.

Rouleur profiles today’s stage 18 of the Giro, the longest stage in the three week race at 143 miles.

History looks at nine doping scandals that changed sports; fortunately, only three involved cyclists, including our old buddy Lance.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to steal a cellphone from a woman while riding your bike, try to avoid projectile vomiting on a parked car when the cops stop you. That feeling when being chased by chainsaw-wielding cycling fans may have inspired you to victory.

And your next bike could magically transform from a tall bike to a chopper.

But you have to build it yourself.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Ex-NBA star Shawn Bradley paralyzed in bike crash, Lime gets colorful, and calls for all bikes to be included in Fed rebate plan

Let’s start with the bad news.

Former NBA star Shawn Bradley, one of the tallest men to play pro basketball, announced yesterday that he’s now paralyzed after he was struck by a driver while riding his bicycle.

The 7’6″ center played 11 seasons in the NBA, the last eight with the Dallas Mavericks, where he became a cornerstone of the team.

According to Bradley, he was just a block from his home in St. George, Utah, when he was run down from behind eight weeks ago.

He suffered a traumatic injury to his spinal cord and underwent surgery to fuse vertebra in his neck. There’s no word on where the paralysis starts, but it implies he may be paralyzed from the neck down.

There’s also no word on whether his condition is permanent. Doctors predict an extremely difficult recovery, while the eight week delay in announcing the injury suggests he may have waited in vain for signs of improvement before going public.

And there’s no mention made of the driver, or whether any charges will be filed.

But as many people have commented on social media, it would have been very hard not to see a seven and a half foot man on a bicycle directly in front of his or her car.

Bradley now plans to use his injury to promote bicycle safety.

And yes, this is exactly the cost of traffic violence.

Meanwhile, Slate gets it, writing that Bradley’s crash is no more a “bicycle accident” than a shark attack is a swimming accident.

Thanks to Opus the Poet and Anthony D. Morrow for the heads-up.

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Lime is unveiling colorful, new and improved e-scooters in the City of Angels.

The new Lime scooter ​features upgrades that make it slightly heavier than the current G2.5 fleet, leading to more stability and durability during rides. Larger wheels and improved suspension lend to a smoother ride, particularly when riding over bumps. The upgraded battery can support up to 18.6 miles on a single charge, versus 14 miles with the older fleet. Other features include:

  •  Dynamic brake on front wheel and drum brake on rear wheel
  • Bicycle-style brake lever on handle bars
  • Motor lock on front wheel when not in use
  • Bluetooth-enabled locking cable that can be attached
  • Folding kickstand, optimized for stability

 

The company also wants to give you a deal to check it out.

To help riders get acclimated to its new scooter fleet, Lime is running a promotion for those who spot one of the first scooters to be deployed this week. From today until Wednesday, March 24th, if riders in LA share a photo of the new scooter design on social media with #LimeisRedLA, Lime will provide the rider a promocode for a free unlock.

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C|net examines the proposal for a $1,500 federal rebate on the purchase of a ebike.

However, a couple people wisely pointed out in yesterday’s comments that any rebate should apply to regular bicycles, as well as ebikes.

Because regular bikes offer exactly the same social and economic benefits as ebikes, with less damage to the environment from power generation and discarded batteries.

Although more ebikes still represents a massive improvement compared to motor vehicles.

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This is what can be done with a little imagination.

Thanks to Shadow Teams for forwarding the tweet.

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How to ride a bike with no hands, in case you failed to master the skill in your youth.

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

No bias here. The BBC is criticized for a “one-sided” report on London’s Low Traffic Neighborhoods — the equivalent of Slow Streets in the US — that was “devoid of any fact-checking.” Meanwhile, a Parliament member claims LTNs are “more contentious than air strikes on Syria.” Scroll down if that last link doesn’t land in the right spot.

London’s Kensington and Chelsea districts deny pleas for the return of a popup bike lane that was unceremoniously ripped out after just seven weeks last December, even though the public supports it by a two-to-one margin.

A red light-running driver nearly takes out a Singapore bike rider crossing legally in a crosswalk, with the green light.

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

It takes a major schmuck to punch a 14-year old New York boy in the face, then ride off with his cellphone.

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Local

LAist looks at what legalizing speed cams would mean for Los Angeles.

Transportation PAC Streets For All unveils their public policy positions for a greener, more sustainable and equitable Los Angeles.

Long Beach community members remember longtime bike advocate Mark Bixby and four others who died in a plane crash ten years ago; credit Bixby with fighting for bike lanes on the new Gerald Desmond Bridge.

 

State

A Santa Barbara woman takes an “easy, breezy” afternoon ride on the city’s new bikeshare program.

Los Altos approves the Bay Area city’s first two-way cycle track.

Better late than never. Livermore police have belatedly decided that a fallen bike rider wasn’t at fault after all when she was fatally right hooked by a truck driver, who fled the scene following the crash; they had originally blamed her for riding in the crosswalk, which is perfectly legal under California law.

 

National

The new Kit Critic for VeloNews explains how and why she breaks all the bikewear rules.

Evidently, it’s not just Los Angeles. We’ve spent the last couple days discussing the dangers of speeding drivers; now a new study from Portland lays the blame for a rash of pedestrian deaths at the feet of drivers who can’t seem to keep their feet off the gas.

Kindhearted cops in Walla Walla, Washington gave a new bike to a high school student who needed transportation to get to his job; the Walla Walla Area Crime Watch has donated 180 bicycles to people in need in the last six years. And yes, it’s entirely possible that I included this item just for the chance to keep repeating Walla Walla.

Houston students may be learning virtually, but an elementary school book bike is proving to be a huge hit to keep students engaged and learning.

Cannondale’s new Times Square ad campaign promotes ebikes, while Brompton tackles agism.

A Philadelphia op-ed says Vision Zero is crucial to the city’s future.

Awful news from Miami, where an entertainment and technology expert and experienced bicyclist tried to beat a drawbridge on his bike and didn’t make it, falling to his death.

 

International

Road.cc offers advice on how to buy a bike cam, and recommends their picks to record your rides. Seriously, a cam mounted to your bike or helmet is the best legal protection if anything happens when you’re riding — and the best way to keep from getting blamed for it.

Wisely or not, Montreal leaves Covid fears behind and makes plans to revive the city’s edition of the World Naked Bike Ride this July.

Comic actress Rebel Wilson is one of us, riding a bicycle around a London hotel ballroom to promote her new role while showing off her newly svelte-ish figure.

Mark Reilly, one of the UK’s most respected framebuilders, passed away recently; he was just 53.

Apparently, bike shop burglaries are a problem in the UK, too

Three professional Kashmiri cyclists pooled their money to open a mountain bike shop.

 

Competitive Cycling

A new Aussie documentary celebrates Phil Liggett as the voice of cycling.

 

Finally…

That feeling when being an ex-president doesn’t spare you from your wife’s criticisms about your bike riding. That feeling when the bike boom has nothing to do with all those bike helmets flying off the shelves — maybe literally.

And if you don’t want to get caught, maybe try stealing bicycles from a different damn trailer park every now and then.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a damn mask, already. 

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