Tag Archive for ebikes

Update: Mother killed, two young children injured in solo ebike crash on San Juan Creek Trail in San Juan Capistrano

Sad news from San Juan Capistrano, where a woman in her 30s was killed when she crashed her ebike Saturday night.

Her two young children, who were also on her bike, were seriously injured.

The woman was riding with her husband on the San Juan Creek Trail north of Creekside Park around 8:30 pm, when she somehow lost control of her bike, and tumbled onto the rocks.

Her children, who had been riding in front and rear bike seats, were also thrown onto the rocks. However, they are expected to fully recover.

An Orange County Sheriff’s sergeant indicated that, unlike her children, Macy was not wearing a helmet, though there’s no indication at this time that she suffered a head injury.

Tragically, Macy’s husband was riding behind on his own ebike, and reportedly watched the crash that took his wife’s life, and nearly his entire family.

This is at least the 50th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 6th that I’m aware of in Orange County.

Update: Bike guide writer Richard Fox has this to add about the crash.

The news likes to blame e-bikes for everything, but in this case it’s not wearing a helmet that probably killed the woman, while helmets saved her two kids. They were returning from the Ohana Music Festival (Pearl Jam, Beck, etc) at the beach, and it was dark. San Juan Creek Trail there is wide and flat but is bounded by boulders lining the channelized creek below, and it seems she fell over and hit her head on them.  Ironically they had passed the most dangerous part of the path, where it dips steeply under Stonehill Dr and speeds accelerate down the hill.  I am a frequent user of that important trail, it’s a bicycle highway to Doheny State Beach for thousands of Orange County residents.  I agree there is a problem with speeding e-bikers on this trail, especially kids on their Class III speeders, but there’s also plenty of non e-bikers in their kits racing through there. There are a few posted 10 mph signs that no one pays attention to. It seems too slow for a trail like this, 15 mph would be more reasonable, including where the woman fell over.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Jennifer Lee Macy and all her family and loved ones. 

Thanks to William Sellin for the heads-up.

 

WeHo gets ebike rules wrong, SCAG wants your opinion on walkable cities, and La Brea gets bus (and bike) lanes

Sometimes, I don’t even know where to start.

West Hollywood announced that sheriff’s deputies will conduct a bicycle and pedestrian safety operation throughout the month of September.

They will ticket anyone who commits a violation that could endanger someone walking or riding, regardless of who commits it.

So ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limits, so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

Nothing unusual there.

But then the city added this highly problematic paragraph.

In addition, users of dockless mobility devices are reminded that only one person is allowed on a device at a time and e-scooters and e-bikes must be ridden on the road, never on the sidewalk – riding dockless mobility devices on the sidewalk is subject to citation. Users of e-scooters and e-bikes must have a valid driver license or instructional permit and must wear a helmet while riding. Users are advised to ride as far to the right side of traffic lane or in designated and marked bike lanes whenever possible and users must always ride in the direction of traffic. Dockless mobility devices should never be parked in a way that blocks pedestrian activity and access. Concerns about dockless mobility devices may be submitted to the City through its website or through the West Hollywood Official City App, which is available as a free download for iPhone users on the App Store and for Android users on Google Play. Feedback may be submitted by email, as well, at parkingconcerns@weho.org or by phone at (213) 247-7720.

Yes, dockless e-scooter users are required to have a driver’s license or learner’s permit, since the state somehow equates riding a tiny scooter with operating a deadly multi-ton machine.

But there is no license requirement for ebikes, dockless or otherwise, unless they are throttle controlled and capable of going up to 30 mph. And there is no helmet requirement for anyone over 18 years old.

In addition, people on bicycles are only required to ride as far to the right as practicable.

Which means you’re allowed to ride outside the door zone, and take the full lane on any street where the right lane is too narrow to safely share with a motor vehicle, while providing at least a three-foot passing distance.

It’s more than a little frightening when the people responsible for the laws don’t seem to know them.

Ebike photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels.

………

SCAG wants to know what you think about walkable communities.

………

Don’t hold your breath waiting for bike lanes on La Brea Ave in Los Angeles.

But newly announced plans call for a nearly 6-mile, part-time bus lane on the busy corridor from Sunset Blvd to Coliseum Street, which bike riders are free to use during the limited times they’re in operation, as long as you don’t mind a bus running up your ass.

Maybe someday Los Angeles will get serious about getting people out of their cars, and make bus lanes 24 hours a day, seven days a week, just like a real city.

Or not.

………

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

You’ve got to be kidding. Police in Yorkshire, England evidently have better things to do than deal with a teenage driver who hit a woman on a bicycle, then stole her phone to keep her from taking pictures after the crash; the cops said she should have just swapped information with him and left them out of it. And let him keep her phone, evidently.

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

Police are looking for a pair of men who rode their ebikes onto the UC San Diego campus, and shot someone multiple times with a BB gun.

………

Local

South Pasadena has just over three months to institute a Slow Streets program, or lose a $420,000 Metro open streets grant that has to be spent by the end of the year.

 

State

California may be many things, but apparently, polite ain’t one of them.

More proof that bike riders are tougher than most people think, as a Goleta man rode his bicycle to the hospital after he was stabbed by another man; his would-be killer was arrested a few hours later for attempted murder.

A plan to improve safety and add bus lanes and bike lanes to a pair of Mountain View streets has hit a roadblock, after it was revealed that the project would require removing 120 trees, including 27 irreplaceable heritage trees. Maybe they should consider removing parking spaces or traffic lanes before they start chopping down trees.

 

National

New Apple watches will be able to tell when you start a bike ride, and call for help if you fall off.

Cycling News recommends their picks for the best gravel bike helmets to protect you on and off the road.

Great idea. An advocacy group in my Colorado hometown is asking the public to contribute a new bike and helmet worth $150 in an effort to give a bicycle to every second grader in the city’s six public elementary schools.

The co-founder of Better Streets Chicago describes being part of a people-protected bike lane to call attention to the need for safer streets.

Cambridge, Massachusetts is installing new flexpost-protected bike lanes on one main street, in response to a new requirement to build out the city’s bike network within five years. That compares to Los Angeles, which gave itself 25 years to build a bike network, while considering the whole thing just “aspirational.”

New York Streetsblog examines the many failures that allowed a dangerous driver to remain on the road until it was too late, despite dozens of traffic violations and a suspended driver’s license; he kept driving anyway, and killed a three-month old baby while driving the wrong way.

New bike lanes have officially opened on New York’s iconic Brooklyn Bridge, after the city removed a traffic lane to give bike riders their own space apart from pedestrians. Meanwhile, a writer for Streetsblog wants to know why existing concrete barriers lining the city’s Addabbo Bridge can’t be moved a few feet to the left to create a protected bike lane.

Wired takes a deep dive into America’s only remaining Tour de France winner, the Tennessee company he founded to make low-cost carbon fiber, and his new ultralight carbon frame ebike.

 

International

Treehugger’s Lloyd Alter offers an excerpt from his new book, Living the 1.5 Degree Lifestyle, arguing all that’s needed for an ebike revolution is “good affordable bikes, a safe place to ride, and a secure place to park.”

Boy, does he get it. A Toronto writer says there’s not much hope for the city’s Vision Zero program when the city council’s “collective head is so far up the tailpipe of motorists.” Couldn’t have said it better myself, except here in Los Angeles, too.

An Irish walker and sometimes bicyclist says put a bell on your bike, already. I’m not a fan of bike bells, since all they tell you is a bike rider is nearby, and an angel just got its wings. Use your voice instead, and politely tell pedestrians what side you’re passing on, or ask them to move one way or the other.

An Indian man has ridden his bicycle nearly 5,000 miles across the country in what began as a tribute to his late father, but took on a life of its own, delivering him new friends and experiences while gaining 69,000 followers on YouTube — and 82,000 on Instagram.

An Aussie website offers tips on how to pick the right bicycle for beginning riders. Although the right bike when you’re starting out may not be a few months later.

 

Competitive Cycling

Seven-time Grand Tour winner Alberto Contador set off on a 1,000-mile ride from Madrid to Milan to celebrate his pro team’s first stage victory in the Giro, in their first year on the WorldTour; Contador is co-owner of the Spanish-based team, along with former cycling great Ivan Basso.

 

Finally…

Park your bike with the fishes without getting wet. Who needs water when you can carry hot coffee on your bike?

And the pandemic bike boom has officially reached Mongolia.

………

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

Bike and transportation bills pass in final days of legislature, ebikes as mobility devices, and unholy upside down lock job

You can stick a fork in this year’s state legislative session.

Amid the flurry of bills passed in the final days of the session were bills legalizing stop as yield for bike riders — aka the stop sign portion of the Idaho Stop Law — a bill legalizing jaywalking, and one that should allow local governments to lower some speed limits.

Another bill would allow cities to limit motor vehicle traffic by making Slow Streets permanent.

As always, however, the question is whether the governor will sign the bills once they reach his desk, assuming he survive’s today’s recall election.

Although he hasn’t shown any sign of wielding his veto pen like a sword to smite the legislature’s best efforts, unlike his predecessor in Sacramento.

………

NIMBYs constantly remind us that not everyone can ride a bike, in order to justify their opposition to bikeways.

Never mind that virtually anyone can ride an ebike. And for many people, riding one is easier than walking.

………

Ralph Durham briefly returns to California from his usual German haunts, just in time to discover this unholy upside down San Francisco locking job.

Photo by Ralph Durham

Then again, the owner did secure the front wheel and frame to the rack with a U-lock, with another locking the rear triangle and wheel, and a cable offering extra support.

It just looks strange.

………

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

An Ontario woman — no, the one in Canada — faces a handful of charges for a mini crime spree, including stabbing a bike tire, then throwing her knife at the bike’s rider while accusing the man of somehow cutting her off.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a driver can assault someone on a bicycle for riding two abreast, while still driving their car, and walk away with just an effing warning. No, seriously.

………

Local

One more reason to end the deadly 85th Percentile Rule — nearly a third of the speed limit increases in the latest round were on streets with painted bike lanes, raising the risk for anyone who’s not encased in a few tons of glass and steel. Thanks to Roland Hannson for the heads-up.

Redditors discuss the viability of riding your bike to the new SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, concluding that you can ride there, but permanent bike parking could be in short supply. Thanks to TomG8090 for the tip.

It may just be a recall, but Metro is still offering free bus and bikeshare rides today for Election Day. Even if you voted weeks ago, like me.

Jennifer Garner is one of us, as is her nine-year old son Samuel, as they enjoyed a ride through LA’s Brentwood neighborhood.

 

State

A Santa Cruz man was lucky to escape injury when he lost control of his bike on a steep descent, and plunged 250 feet down the hill; he was rescued by sheriff’s deputies after local residents heard him calling for help.

Fifty-seven-year old NorCal bike shop chain Mike’s Bikes has been sold to Dutch conglomerate The Pon Group, parent company of Santa Cruz Bicycles, among other bike brands. But you may be out of luck if you ordered a Specialized bike from them, after the bikemaker abruptly pulled their account following the sale.

A 32-year old Davis man faces charges for walking down the street punching cars, then pushing a 15-year old girl off her bicycle and attacking her before he was stopped by bystanders.

 

National

PeopleForBikes applauds the $7.4 billion for bicycles in the proposed House infrastructure bill. Although the prospects of that passing the Senate unscathed aren’t looking good, with West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin demanding that the $3.5 billion bill be pared down to a relatively paltry $1.5 billion.

Private land owners are blocking access to Colorado mountains in the wake of a 2019 appeals court ruling that upheld a ruling making the US Air Force Academy liable for a mountain biker who crashed after hitting a sinkhole on a washed out trail.

Missouri is considering a rule change that would expand access by allowing ebikes into state conservation areas.

New York bicycle delivery riders team up to take their safety into their own hands, after accepting they can’t count on the police for protection.

 

International

Police in Alberta, Canada crack down on bike thieves, busting four bike boosters by using bait bikes. Which serves as your periodic reminder that the LAPD still doesn’t use bait bikes to combat the ever-rising tide of bike theft, due to a flawed city attorney ruling that warned it might be seen as entrapment — even though bait bikes are successfully, and legally, used elsewhere in California.

Glasgow, Scotland drivers are up in arms demanding the removal of new bollards marking a bike lanes, insisting they have serious road safety concerns. Because the bollards apparently interfere with their God-given right to park in the bike lane, and they’re apparently unaware they can just drive over the plastic car tickler bendy posts, anyway.

Electrek considers the twenty coolest ebikes from this year’s Eurobike 2021 in Friedrichshafen, Germany, including a wave-riding ebike, and wheels that charge your bike with solar power while you ride.

Even the Smithsonian Magazine is onboard with the $1,062 German-made backpack that inflates to form an upper body airbag in a crash. Combine that with your $450 Hövding inflatable helmet, and you’ll be nearly impervious to injury for a mere $1,500.

Business is booming in Portugal’s “bike valley,” which produces a quarter of the ebikes in the European Union, despite having just 2% of the population.

A new Indian e-scooter startup pledges its new factory will be run and operated entirely by women, with its eventual 10,000-person staff making it the world’s largest women-only factory.

Bikeshare comes to the capital of Rwanda in an effort to reduce carbon emissions and the city’s automotive dependency.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling examines the steps pro cycling is — or isn’t — taking to prevent the next horrific crash. This one doesn’t appear to be available on Yahoo, so if Bicycling blocks you, you’re out of luck.

Trinidadian women’s cyclist Teniel Campbell took Monday’s sixth stage of the Tour de l’Ardeche on a borrowed bike, after thieves stole all her team’s bicycles prior to the previous stage; other teams pitched in to contribute their spare bikes to keep the team in the race.

Kiwi Continental team Global 6 Cycling rode with bright green wheels during the recent Tour of Britain in support of refugees.

Speaking of the Tour of Britain, The Scotsman offers photos from last week’s stage race won by Belgian cyclist Wout Van Aert.

 

Finally…

Judging by the headline, there’s only one bicyclist in Columbia, Missouri, who keeps getting bigger.

And who needs all those boring college classes when you can get your degree in bicycle assembly and repair.

………

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

E-cargo bikes beat delivery vans in city centers, new and improved LA bike lanes, and who’s really in the way

Let’s talk e-cargo bikes.

A new European study shows electric cargo bikes are cleaner and less polluting than typical delivery vans, which isn’t really surprising.

But they’re also faster and more efficient — 60% faster than vans in city centers, resulting in significantly more deliveries per hour.

And they’re even cleaner than electric vans, emitting a full third less carbon — and 90% less than diesel vans.

As an added bonus, they have a far smaller impact on urban congestion.

Here’s what The Guardian had to say

Home deliveries have soared in recent years, spurred by online shopping and the coronavirus pandemic. Vans can travel along clear stretches of road at higher speeds than cargo bikes but are slowed by congestion and the search for parking. Cargo bikes bypass traffic jams, take shortcuts through streets closed to through traffic and ride to the customers door.

“Recent estimates from Europe suggest that up to 51% of all freight journeys in cities could be replaced by cargo bike,” said Ersilia Verlinghieri at the Active Travel Academy at the University of Westminster and lead author of the report. “So it’s remarkable to see that, if even just a portion of this shift were to happen in London, it would be accompanied by not only dramatic reduction of CO2 emissions, but also contribute to a considerable reduction of risks from air pollution and road traffic collisions, whilst ensuring an efficient, fast and reliable urban freight system.”

In other words, cargo bikes for the win.

………

Speaking of which, our German correspondent Ralph Durham forwards photos of the the wide variety of work bikes he found on a recent visit to Strasbourg, France.

Starting with a food delivery bike for a Japanese restaurant…

A postal bike…

And what appears to be a bakery bike.

Finally, he sends this photo of an electric flatbed bike towing a trailer, which was picking up food waste from a restaurant for treatment offsite.

But as drivers and NIMBYs keep reminding us, you can’t carry things on a bicycle, let alone make deliveries.

Right?

………

Maybe there’s more going on that it seems.

Streetsblog reports on a number of new and improved bike lanes in the LA area, including in Downtown LA, South LA, Koreatown and the San Fernando Valley.

Then again, it seems like nothing is going on outside of DTLA, so anything is an improvement.

………

Your old bike could have been a Volvo.

………

This is what LA could look like in just two short years with a little more leadership.

Okay, a lot more leadership.

………

They should put this on the cover of every driver’s instruction manual and owner’s manual in the country.

………

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

Culver City police are still looking for the bike-riding man who assaulted a young woman last month.

………

Local

This is who we share the road with. Three innocent people were killed in a violent Burbank collision when a speeding driver slammed into their car on a quiet surface street; the killer driver may have been racing with the driver of another car, who also crashed.

LA City Councilwoman Monica Rodriguez calls for redesigning streets to put a stop to street racing. Making them bike and pedestrian friendly helps, too.

 

State

Sad news from San Jose, where a man died a day after he was struck by a driver when he allegedly ran a red light on his bike. As usual, the question is whether anyone saw him run the light, other than the driver who hit him.

 

National

Streetsblog says the new bipartisan infrastructure bill could be better for active transportation than it seems, with hidden clauses within the bill that could benefit bike riders and pedestrians.

They get it. CityLab says if you want safer streets, get rid of dangerously aggressive language in car and truck commercials. But you may have to give up your email address if you want to read it.

Putting a bike rack on your car can significantly reduce your gas mileage. So you might as well just ride your bike in the first place.

Apparently firm believers in thinking small, Civilized Cycles thinks their new ebike could replace your second car. Because replacing your first — or only — car is just a bridge too far for them, evidently.

A 14-year old Washington boy made it all the way across the US on a fundraising bike ride to see the Statue of Liberty, accompanied by his 72-year old grandfather.

A woman in Maine put together a virtual posse and got her stolen bicycle back within days, although the ukulele she kept on the handlebars may be gone forever.

America’s only remaining Tour de France winner is turning Eastern Tennessee into the hub for his new bike line. And wants to turn it into what he calls “Carbon Fiber Valley.”

The Cherokee Nation is now accepting applications for next year’s 950-mile Remember the Removal bike tour retracing the infamous Trail of Tears through seven states. But you have to be Cherokee to apply.

 

International

Forget the best ebike. Treehugger considers what would be a good design for both older and beginner ebike riders.

Yes, you can put a bike rack on your car in Costa Rica. Just be sure to mount your bikes correctly.

A new London resident tries the city’s bikeshare for the first time, and it completely changes his view of the city. Let alone how fast he could get around.

You know there’s a problem when seven people have been killed riding their bikes at the same London junction in the past 13 years, where long-promised safety improvements have yet to materialize.

A pair of Bengaluru bike riders are attempting to set a new record by riding 15,000 miles through 29 Indian states and 2 territories in 200 days.

 

Competitive Cycling

More troubles for Britain’s Olympic cycling team, with reports that the radical new design of the team’s track bikes may have been stolen from a design patented by famed cycling engineer and aerodynamicist Richard McAinsh and his Dutch bike brand.

Good news from Tokyo, where BMX cyclist Connor Fields was released from the hospital just five days after a horrific crash during a preliminary heat put him in the ICU with a brain hemorrhage, collapsed lung and broken ribs.

Danish team pursuit cyclist Frederik Madsen finally apologized to the British rider he unceremoniously yelled at after slamming into him while looking down at the track.

 

Finally…

Strap one on your handlebars, and never get bit by another mosquito when you ride. If you’re going to steal a bike, return it with a note saying you’re sorry.

And sometimes, other road users just jump right out at you.

………

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

More anti-ebike bias from San Diego’s North County, and the new railing on the Golden Gate Bridge blows — literally

What the hell is going in San Diego’s North County?

A day after we discussed a Carlsbad GOP candidate opposing California’s proposed ebike rebate for all the wrong reasons, a San Diego TV station looks at the “controversy” over the rising popularity of ebikes in Encinitas.

According to NBC7, some people have complained on Nextdoor — as if everyone on Nextdoor doesn’t complain about something — and circulated a petition demanding that ebikes be banned from Moonlight Beach.

But the station widely misses the mark when they try to make the case that ebikes are somehow dangerous, by lumping them together with e-scooters and hoverboards to argue that 41 Americans were killed due to the devices over a three-year period.

Not that ebikes have anything in common with the other two, aside from having a battery.

And never mind that an average of 13.6 deaths a year pales in comparison to the 42,000 people killed in traffic collisions last year alone.

Yes, some people on ebikes may ride in a rude or unsafe manner. Just like some people do on regular bikes, on foot or in motor vehicles.

However, many of those scofflaw ebikers likely stem from their popularity with  new riders, and people who haven’t ridden in years, if not decades, and haven’t learned decent bicycle etiquette yet.

So just use a little common courtesy and common sense, however you get around.

But don’t try to ban ebikes just because you don’t get it.

And someone please tell North County residents to get their collective ebike-hating heads out from whence the sun don’t shine.

Ebike photo by Maxfoot from Pixabay.

………

The new and improve Golden Gate Bridge railing isn’t exactly working out that way for people on bicycles.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

………

Now that’s more like it.

Vancouver proposes a hefty pollution tax for the privilege of parking on residential city streets. Which could free up a lot of space for other uses.

Like riding a bicycle.

https://twitter.com/theBreakerNews/status/1404487514237198338

………

Nothing like the feeling when a 13-year old kid can shred better than most of us.

And yes, that includes me. Even though I’d have a hard time shredding a postcard these days.

………

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

No bias here. The UK’s Mr. Loophole, who specializes in getting dangerous drivers off the hook for traffic violations, wants to force you to wear a numbered tabard — a sleeveless pullover top — every time you ride a bike so you can be properly spanked if you do something naughty.

Seriously, lay off your damn horn when you go to pass someone on a bike.

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

In a horrible crime caught on security cam, a 53-year old New York bicycle delivery rider was stabbed in the back by another bike rider for no apparent reason as he was making a delivery. His attacker rode up from behind and stabbed him after bizarrely asking “What happened?” Fortunately, the victim is expected to recover, but the suspect remains at large.

………

Local

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton rides the Expo Bike Path, and complains that Culver City abandons bike riders on a short gap in the bikeway near the Culver City Metro station, forcing people to take a poorly marked half-mile detour along city streets. And offers a long list of recommended fixes.

 

State

There’s peace in the hills around San Diego, as the local San Diego Mountain Bike Association rejoins the International Mountain Bicycling Association, aka IMBA, after a three-year split.

Speaking of the SDMBA, the group is partnering with Canyon Bikes and the founders of the popular Canyon Belgian Waffle Ride for a new fundraising campaign to support local trails, with a grand prize of $4,000 towards any Canyon bike.

Watch a crane hoist the center segment into place for a new Palo Alto bike and pedestrian bridge.

 

National

Three tips on riding a bicycle with your dog. I’m okay with riding with a dog, as long as it’s willing to ride stoker and pedal for itself.

Trek is marking Pride Month with a nationwide series of Pride Rides on the last Sunday of the month, starting out from the 145 Trek stores across the US.

After someone stole the bike an Albuquerque man bought just to use for an 80-mile fundraising ride benefitting Colorado children’s hospital that saved his daughter’s life, a kindhearted local bike shop owner gave him his own bike to use for the ride.

A tandem bike helped bring a Colorado man and his 16-year old son closer together during the pandemic, battling the wind as they passed bison and bald eagles. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

San Antonio, Texas NBA legend Manu Ginobilli is one of us, bragging online about finishing a 40-mile ride in 2 hours and 15 minutes.

Apparently, killer hit-and-run drivers don’t stick around in Oklahoma, either.

School kids in Indianapolis can get a new bike through a little sweat equity, as a local program guides them through building a mountain bike they can ride off on at the end of the 16-hour class.

The New York state legislature passed a bill to improve bike and pedestrian access on MTA bridges, and provide better bike parking at subway and commuter rail stations.

Madonna is one of us, too, going for a ride through the streets of New York with her 27-year old boyfriend.

 

International

A Toronto paper questions why the city of Laval has been slow to take to the city’s new bike network, despite 70 miles of new bike lanes over the past six years. Maybe the fact that there’s only 70 miles of mile lanes for a city of a half million people could have something to do with it.

He gets it. A Toronto columnist calls the city out for blocking a busy bike lane with construction pylons, forcing riders out into the traffic lane; an earlier column about another bike lane blocked with a concrete block received quick action from the mayor’s office.

London’s Express highlights the best bicycling gifts for dad.

They get it, too. A survey of Scottish children says drivers should go back to school for extra training on how to drive around people on bicycles.

A 54-year old UK man was killed when he fell off his new ebike and hit his helmetless head while riding home from the local pub, with a BAC just under three times the legal limit.

When the pandemic locked a British DJ out of the clubs where he usually performed, he bought a three-wheeled bike and outfitted it with his gear to take the party to the people.

Life is cheap in Ireland, where a young boy received the equivalent of less than $14,000 after he was injured riding hie bike into an open manhole cover when he was just six years old.

The N+1 formula has worked out to forty vintage bikes for a South African man, who has represented the country three times in the UCI World Master Track Championships.

Cycling Tips wants to introduce you to Melbourne-based handmade bikemaker Mark Hester of Prova Cycles.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling News looks forward to the US pro road cycling championships in Knoxville, Tennessee at the end of this month.

Retired Aussie cyclist Will Clarke went from competing on the WorldTour to shearing sheep in a single year.

 

Finally…

Face it, your bike doesn’t need you any more. Does riding your bike backwards give you a negative Strava KOM?

And stealing a bike is bad enough. But kicking a dog minutes later is inexcusable.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

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.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Bikes and ebikes help people with disabilities, speed kills, and don’t leave your bikes with an angry girlfriend

Yes, bikes are good for people with disabilities.

Even though anti-bike critics invariably claim that bike lanes, or any other bicycle infrastructure — or even just bicycles themselves — somehow pose a risk to people with disabilities.

Or that disabled, older or out-of-shape people can’t ride bikes, so bike lanes won’t do them any good.

Which was never true.

And it’s even less so in the age of ebikes.

Case in point,

Then there’s this woman who suffers from acute hepatic porphyria. And discovers that she can ride an ebike without the white knuckle pain and fatigue that makes physical activity nearly impossible.

Meanwhile, a study from a Colorado university shows that ebike users in the state tend to be older, and like being able to ride longer and farther than they could otherwise.

Which can help keep them riding years after they might otherwise have quit.

Photo by mzter from Pixabay.

………

The next time someone tries to tell you a few extra miles per hour won’t make any difference, show them this.

………

Everyone enjoys riding with a friend.

………

Presenting the best bike helmet ad in at least the last 1,200 years.

Thanks to W Corylus for the link.

………

Shoulda used Bike Index.

And maybe not done whatever it was that pissed her off so much.

Thanks to Tim Rutt for the photo.

………

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

There’s a special place in hell for the Ypsilanti, Michigan man who threatened a young boy with a sledgehammer, then went back inside and shot him through a window, for the crime of briefly leaving a bicycle on his lawn. Fortunately, the kid was only hit in the arm; the man who shot him faces an attempted murder charge, albeit with a measly $10,000 bond.

………

Local

Metro’s board will vote on modernizing the rules for highway funds later this month, potentially freeing them to be used on transit, Complete Streets, and active transportation projects.

 

State

A writer for Capitol Weekly notes that AB 550 isn’t dead yet, despite being stuck in the state assembly’s Appropriations Committee, where the bill to allow speed cam pilot programs faces a steep uphill climb.

A 61-year old New York pastor passes through Victorville on a cross-country fundraising ride, from LA’s Union Rescue Mission to the Bowery Mission in New York City.

 

National

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss celebrates older bicycles, with their seemingly endless supply that flies in the face of shortages of new bikes caused by the bike boom.

On the other hand, Women’s Health recommends foldies, calling them “your ticket to getting pretty much anywhere local without sitting in traffic,” while storing conveniently in the hall closet when you’re done. Just try that with an SUV.

A Colorado letter writer asks if it’s legal to drive with a bike rack covering your car’s rear license plate; not surprisingly, the answer is a resounding no. It’s not legal here in California, either. And probably isn’t most places. 

NPR looks forward to the return of the Des Moines Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, aka RAGBRAI, this summer, as the state works to bring back large events.

A Texas man who’s been on and off the streets was forced to walk over three miles to work every day after someone stole his bicycle.

It takes a major jerk to ripoff an Ohio nonprofit bike co-op. Let alone twice in two nights.

Immigrant bicycle couriers are banding together in New York to demand better working conditions, with one rider asking “If we’re essential, shouldn’t we have what’s essential to survive?”

Good advice. After an Alabama bike rider is killed trying to cross the street, a local bike shop owner advises riders to “be as visible as possible and don’t assume that someone sees you.” In fact, you’re usually better off assuming they don’t.

Um, no. Yet another clickbait bike survey, this time bizarrely claiming that Miami is the world’s second-most beautiful city for a bike ride, based on Instagram data. According to the survey, Miami only trails Chiang Mai, Thailand, and comes in ahead of Paris, Athens and Barcelona. As usual, Los Angeles doesn’t make that cut, either.

 

International

A writer in Havana says the city needs to reclaim its bike lanes, many of which were ripped out in favor of cars during the last decade, and that the communist government needs to put more bikes on the market — and maybe build them there, too.

In a socially distanced fundraiser, a record-holding, ultra-marathon riding Winnipeg, Canada grandfather will ride his bike for 24 hours to pick up checks from mailboxes to help feed orphaned kids in Kenya.

A reminder to ride carefully around other bicyclists, as a 62-year old Montreal man was critically injured when two bike riders somehow collided after he allegedly ran a red light.

A new survey from ebike maker Volt says 44% of Londoners are more likely to ride an ebike than use public transit. And in a city where transit actually works, too.

No surprise here, as Scottish bikeshares saw a huge jump in usage during the pandemic lockdowns.

A British bike rider died last year after falling through an open storm drain, leading to calls to cover them — something the US did a couple decades ago.

A European sports website ranks the top seven bikesharing apps, only one of which — Lime — you’ll find here.

Advocates in Berlin, Germany are campaigning to make the city’s popup pandemic bike lanes permanent. Which offers yet another reminder that Los Angeles can’t make them permanent, because they never installed any to begin with.

Moscow cracks down on e-scooter riders by using GPS data to impose speed controls, limiting scooters to a modest 9 mph in the city center. Thanks to Erik Griswold for this one.

A member of India’s parliament is riding a bike through the country’s dusty countryside to convince people to get vaccinated.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews offers an eight-point plan to improve safety for gravel racers.

Bad news for Olympic mountain bike competitors, as Mathieu van der Poel was officially named to the Dutch mountain bike squad.

Anchorage, Alaska’s Lael Wilcox survived possums and snakes to win the women’s 338-mile Unbound Gravel XL race.

 

Finally…

Your next helmet could be custom 3D printed to fit your head. Go mountain biking from the comfort of your own Playstation.

And this is one way to make an impression. Although probably not a good one.

https://twitter.com/truckerE/status/1402395081198473216

Thanks again to Tim Rutt.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

“Elderly” Venice man killed by drunken e-scooter user, white woman orders Black prof off “her” road, and ebike bias in CO

Tragic news from Venice, where an “elderly” man was killed when he was struck by an e-scooter user.

Make that an allegedly drunk scooter user.

The crash occurred around 9:45 pm Saturday on Lincoln Blvd at East Marco Court.

According to a report for KABC-7, the scooter rider was allegedly 1) illegally riding on the sidewalk, while 2) illegally carrying a woman passenger on the back, and while 3) wasted.

The victim, who was described only as elderly, or by other accounts, older — which could mean just about anything — died at the scene after hitting his head on the sidewalk.

Both people on the scooter suffered minor injuries, while the man operating it was arrested at the scene for DUI.

It’s unclear whether he can be charged under the state law prohibiting driving under the influence, or the statute prohibiting biking under the influence, which carries a much lower penalty.

This serves as yet another tragic reminder that sidewalks are intended for pedestrians.

While it’s legal to ride a bike on the sidewalk in some California cities, you’re required to operated it safely, without posing an undue risk to people on foot. And basic human decency demands that you give as much space as possible and warn people before passing.

On the other hand, it is always illegal to ride an electric scooter on the sidewalk, or with a passenger.

And never while drunk or stoned.

Although I’d much rather see someone ride a bike or scooter while under the influence of anything than get behind the wheel of a car, which posses a much greater risk to everyone on the road.

But as this crash tragically shows, you can still pose a needless — and potentially fatal — risk to others.

Photo by Martin Péchy from Pexels.

………

Racism, or just NIMBYism taken to the extreme?

Or more likely, both.

Black University of Washington med school professor Edwin Lindo went out for a bike ride while on vacation, and ran into a white woman — aka a “Becky” — who literally told him he couldn’t ride his bicycle on the road she paid for with her property taxes.

No, really.

https://twitter.com/EdwinLindo/status/1398870887630139397

Seriously, there is no effing excuse for that crap.

Ever.

Period.

Fortunately, Lindo didn’t let a little racism chase him off his bike.

Thanks to Keith Johnson for the heads-up.

………

No bias here.

A story from the Denver Post tries to offer advice for ebike riders, particularly of the novice persuasion.

And they mostly kinda get it right.

Although this comment from an Aspen mountain bike instructor totally misses the mark.

“This is a framework of why it’s so important for e-bikers to have etiquette because they are now powered up with a weapon, really, that goes 20 miles an hour,” he said. “I say ‘weapon’ because now they can hurt themselves and others pretty easily.”

Never mind that it’s pretty easy to do 20 mph on a road bike, without a motor. And not that unusual on a mountain bike.

And while there’s no shortage of rude and/or inexperienced bike riders, no bicycle is a weapon, unless someone — like a cop, for instance — picks it up and uses it that way.

There’s there’s this bit of advice, which they apparently think is so important that it was repeated verbatim in a caption.

Though you may be tempted to ride side-by-side with your friends or family members so you can chat on your e-bikes, always ride single file and as far to the right as possible, unless you’re passing. This gives other cyclists and cars an opportunity to pass you safely.

Where do we even start?

This is sort-of decent advice for trail riders, but horrible for those riding on the road.

Yes, try to keep to the right on trails so faster riders can pass you. Unless you’re the faster rider, in which case you should pass politely.

And try not to ride abreast if it means clogging up the trail so others can’t enjoy it.

But on the road, riding like a gutter bunny puts you a greater risk of unsafe passes.

Most authorities, like the League of American Bicyclists and Cycling Savvy — and even Caltrans, for those of us in California — tell you to ride in the center of the lane, unless there’s a shoulder wide enough and clean enough to ride safely.

Riding two or more abreast in a single traffic lane can also increase your visibility and help hold the lane by forcing drivers to move into the next lane to pass you.

It’s also legal to ride abreast in many states, but check the law where you ride before trying it.

Like here in California, where police sometimes misapply the requirement ti right to the right to ticket people who ride abreast, even though there’s not one word prohibiting it under California law.

And they may not get it right where you are, either.

………

Meet what may be LA County’s first protected bike lane.

………

Cars don’t belong in parks. Even police cars.

That’s what bike cops are for.

https://twitter.com/streetsforall/status/1398844138775212036

………

The LACBC has put together a number of training rides for this month’s LA Rivers Challenge.

………

Megan Lynch forwards this video profiling the last of Ireland’s cycling posties, from 1975.

………

This is what rush hour could look like in Los Angeles.

But probably won’t until we get new leadership.

………

That feeling when you have a stowaway on your bike.

https://twitter.com/KathrynBertine/status/1398274331885522948

………

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

In what may be an act of sabotage, someone left industrial razor blades in the bike lane on Santa Monica Blvd. Even if it was just an accidental spill, the blades could cause a deadly crash by slicing through a rider’s tire, spilling them into heavy high-speed traffic.

Then there’s this from the UK.

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

Police in New York are looking for an ebike-riding gunman who killed another man who was sitting in a parked car in broad daylight.

………

Local

Streetsblog examines the outdated plan to widen Burbank Blvd in North Hollywood to add a third traffic lane in each direction, and make it meet “Major Highway Standards.” Which would violate the intent, if not the letter, of LA’s Vision Zero plan and the transportation portion of Mayor’s Green New Deal.

They get it. The LA Times comes out against plans to widen the 710 Freeway, calling it “a zombie project from another era.”

 

State

While the state and feds debate providing ebike rebates, ebike buyers in San Mateo County could get an $800 rebate from the local clean energy company.

Speaking of which, an op-ed from a Bay Area professor calls on the state to pass a bill providing ebike rebates for up to 10,000 buyers.

A Marin paper says a new countywide ebike bikeshare could offer a first mile/last mile solution for public transportation. However, that depends on whether they’re willing to provide safe places to ride them.

A Placer County columnist says we all accept a little risk when we ride a bike, but don’t be stupid about it.

 

National

This is what a salt and barnacle encrusted Lime bike looks like after it’s pulled out of a Seattle sound.

A new Washington transit user takes understandable pride in figuring out how to use the bike rack on the bus.

Horrible news from Tucson, Arizona, where a tow truck driver ran a red light and slammed into a group of bicyclists, killing a 29-year old woman and sending four other people to the emergency room; a sixth rider was struck, but didn’t suffer serious injuries. Meanwhile, the community is rallying to support the victimsThanks to Keith Johnson for the heads-up.

Former NBA star Mark Eaten died after going out for a bike ride Friday night; the two-time defensive player of the year with the Utah Jazz was found unconscious on the side of the road, and died at a local hospital; authorities said there was no reason to believe a car was involved. Even though drivers can easily force riders off their bikes without ever making contact. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the link.

Kindhearted people in a tiny town in eastern Colorado raised funds to donate 150 bicycles, scooters and skateboards for local kids.

A Pittsburgh neighborhood gets tired of speeding drivers, so they ordered their own speed bump through Amazon.

In another multiple victim crash, a Pennsylvania woman suffered life-threatening injuries and another woman suffered minor injuries when they were both run down by a hit-and-run driver in Virginia, despite wearing reflective vests, with headlights and flashers on their bikes.

A group of Black women rode from Harlem to DC, covering 250 miles in 65 hours to replicate a ride taken by another group of Black women 93 years earlier, while raising funds to provide good used bikes to people in need.

Great idea. The Black Chamber of Commerce in New Orleans is installing free bike racks in front of Black-owned businesses to “help encourage safe and equitable transportation” to get there.

New Orleans NIMBYs repeat the same complaints you’ll hear anywhere bike lanes go in, arguing that bollards for the city’s first protected bike lanes are ugly, and that replacing traffic lanes with bike lanes increases congestion. At least they didn’t say the markings on the street make them dizzy, like Coronado residents did a few years ago.

 

International

Experts weigh in on what comes next for the pandemic-driven bike boom.

The kindhearted members of the Medicine Hat, Alberta Rotary Club refurbished 79 bicycles to give to people in need.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 90-year old Alberta, Canada man rides a little more than six miles around town every day, sometimes twice a day, after his grown children gave him a bike for his birthday.

A Welsh Olympic gold medal-winning cyclist tells drivers to be patient, after she was knocked off her bike by a hit-and-run driver.

A speeding, coked-up English driver got a well-deserved three years behind bars for slamming into a six-year old boy on a bicycle, leaving the kid with a dangerous brain bleed; fortunately, the boy is expected to make a full recovery. And yes, he probably deserved a hell of a lot more than that.

You’ve got to be kidding. An Irish driver walked when he was acquitted of dangerous driving for slamming into a group of bicyclists, and killing a 34-year old woman — despite coming around a blind curve at high speed on the wrong side of road — in part because the victim may have fallen off her bike before the impact. Never mind that she was probably just trying to get the hell out of his way to avoid getting killed.

Up to 10,000 bike riders turned out for Critical Mass in Zurich, Switzerland to call attention to dangers posed by motorists.

Bike riders in eleven German towns rode to protest the American blockade of Cuba.

The Spanish paracycling championships were called off after a volunteer was killed by an ambulance during the competition.

Belarus was deservedly stripped of hosting duties for next month’s European track cycling championships, after the country faked a bomb threat to hijack a plane so they could arrest a dissident journalist who had fled the country.

Sad news from India, where the father of the Bicycle Girl has died, possibly from Covid-19; she gained international fame by pedaling across the country to carry her ill father home during the country’s first lockdown.

Disgusting story from Israel, where a small child was detained at gunpoint for the crime of flying a Palestinian flag from his bicycle. Thanks again to Megan Lynch.

Great idea. Dubai has installed bike counters on a 20-mile long bike path, providing users with a realtime bike count, as well as weather conditions, announcements and warnings.

The pandemic bike boom set a record for bicycle imports to Australia, coupled with a 50% increase in bike sales.

 

Competitive Cycling

Tour de France champ Egan Bernal clinched his first victory in the Giro by wearing the pink leader’s jersey into Milan’s Piazza Duomo as his Colombian countrymen celebrated.

Italy’s Damiano Caruso called himself “the happiest man in the world” after an unplanned victory in the Giro’s penultimate stage, which clinched an unexpected second-place finish for the three-week stage race.

Cycling Tips offers a behind the scenes Giro photo essay capturing the views you couldn’t get on TV. Or at all, for most of us in the US.

And this pretty well puts Bernal’s win in perspective.

It turns out the blue front tires used by the Jumbo-Visma team in this week’s Critérium du Dauphiné are just a marketing promotion for a European bicycle subscription service.

Keep an eye on 19-year old cyclist Riley Amos, who won the 2021 edition of Colorado’s Iron Horse Bicycle Classic; the road race was the launching pad for another young rider named Sepp Kuss recently. The women’s race was won by pro mountain biker and once and future Olympian Erin Huck.

The Belgian Waffle Ride offers a beginner’s clinic for California riders interested in taking part in the popular gravel race.

 

Finally…

Your new ebike could look like a very skinny Vespa. Your next cargo bike could (clumsily) charge itself.

And evidently, indoor trainers are nothing new.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the link.

………

Happy Pride Month to everyone in the LGBTQ+ community, and all their supporters. And yes, you can proudly include me in that last group. 

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Able-bodied mtn biker confronts disabled ebike rider, Metrolink helps promote bikes, and redesigning LA’s worst intersections

A video from last fall has popped up again, causing fresh outrage online.

Justifiable outrage, for a change.

David Wolfberg forwards a story from Boing Boing that picks up a video we posted last September, showing an able-bodied mountain biker complaining about a disabled rider’s adaptive ebike, and demanding to see the rule allowing him to use it on the Indiana trail.

Maybe you’ll remember it.

Lord knows I do.

The story doesn’t end there, though, as reprehensible as this uncomprehending attack on a disabled man is.

Wolfberg also forwards videos revealing the disabled man, Tom Morris, to be a noted endurance athlete and coach.

And yes, going back to the original video, Morris had every right to ride it on the trail according to this piece from Road.cc.

Morris…has since said he has been in touch with Terry Coleman, the deputy director of Indiana’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR), who told him that his bike was perfectly legal to ride on trails.

Morris said: “What I’m on is not an e-bike, it’s an adaptive piece of equipment. And adaptive equipment is allowed on all of the trails throughout all of Indiana. So if you’ve got this equipment, get out and use it, use it in the state parks, use it on these trails.”

Morris also said Coleman told him that the DNR had actually just bought 12 “off-roading wheelchairs”, to give disabled people in the state more access to trails and paths for leisure activities.

So the next time you find tempted to criticize someone else for some infraction, real or imagined, think twice.

Then don’t.

There may be some reason why they’re doing what they’re doing. And it doesn’t really matter whether you understand or agree with it.

Because it’s not your job to enforce the rules, any more than driveway vigilante drivers have the right to enforce their interpretations — or misinterpretations, more often — of bike laws on you.

Try a little empathy and understanding instead.

And maybe make this world a little better for all of us in the process.

Image by Michael Gaida from Pixabay.

………

Remember this tweet the next time someone insists Los Angeles isn’t (insert more progressive city here).

………

Metrolink is teaming with the LACBC to promote bicycling as Bike Month sinks slowly in the west.

Taking Metrolink makes a great way to explore other parts of Southern California by bike, especially with their $10 weekend fares.

And particularly now that it’s getting safer to get back on a train.

………

Great thread from 18-year old housing and transportation enthusiast Zennon Ulyate-Crow, who is doing the work LADOT should be doing to reimagine some of LA’s most problematic intersections.

Here’s his latest project, which turns an East Hollywood mess into something we could all live with.

Let’s hope LADOT is already keeping an eye on him, with the promise of a job once he gets his degree.

………

Speaking of LADOT, it seems the ostensibly progressive department ostensibly focused on Compete Streets still hasn’t gotten the message of the mayor’s Green New Deal — that we have to reimagine our streets and how we get around if we’re going to meet the city’s climate change goals, let alone survive.

Or maybe they still have old school engineers on staff who retain their focus on automotive throughput, as an obsolete plan to widen Burbank Blvd rises from the dead.

Meanwhile, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton busts the myths in Metro’s half billion dollar highway budget for next year, saying this is not what Angelenos voted for when they approved Measure M funding.

With auto-centric crap like this is still being pushed by Metro and LADOT, maybe we can’t afford to wait, and need to get Ulyate-Crow working there now.

Or better yet, running it.

………

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration wants to instruct you in how to wear a bike helmet.

………

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

No bias here. San Carlos has installed a bicycle dismount zone where people are supposed to get off their bikes and walk them across an intersection to “minimize conflicts between vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists.” Even though bike riders have every right to just ride across the damn street.

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

A man in Baton Rouge, Louisiana was sentenced to 25 years behind bars for fatally shooting another man who tried to take his bicycle from outside a convenience store.

A Jackson, Mississippi man is on trial for fatally shooting a 14-year old boy in the back after one of the boy’s friends stole a bike from his yard. We all hate bike thieves. But no bicycle is ever worth a human life. 

………

Local

Streets For All introduces Destruction for Nada, a much-needed campaign to stop all highway widening in LA County, as Metro considers an induced-demand boosting jump in highway spending at Thursday’s board meeting, along with a proposal to kill the wasteful and destructive $8 billion plan to widen the 710 Freeway. It’s long past time all of Metro’s funding was shifted to transit and Complete Streets.

Speaking of Streets For All and highways, mark your calendar for Wednesday, June 9th, as they host another of their virtual happy hours, featuring Caltrans District 7 Director Tony Tavares.

LAist examines the battle over the Beautiful Boulevard plan to create a livable Complete Street along the route of the planned NoHo to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit line through Eagle Rock.

 

State

Antioch could build the Bay Area’s first Bicycle Garden, a fully landscaped miniature streetscape within an existing park to teach bicycling skills to kids and adults.

The post-pandemic reopening is raising a debate over the streets of San Francisco, as advocates call for keeping closed-off streets carfree, while drivers insist they need the roads open to get around. That’s a debate that should be happening in Los Angeles, as well, as the city faces an urgent need to reimagine how people get around in order to meet climate goals, and confront the ever-increasing congestion on our streets. But isn’t. 

San Francisco installs the city’s first advisory lane, where bike riders use bike lanes on either side of the street, while drivers in both directions share a single center lane.

Sad news from Northern California, where a man riding a bike in Cottonwood was killed by a hit-and-run driver who just left him on the side of the road to die. As we’ve said before, in cases like that, the driver should face a murder charge once they’re caught for making the conscious decision to let their victim die.

 

National

Marketplace reports on why you should care about the draft update to the MUTCD, the country’s traffic control bible.

The NRDC has rejected the proposed federal highway bill under consideration in the US Senate, calling it a small step when we need a great leap.

Bicycling explains why you should ride your bike for fun more often. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

An anonymous donor gave a whopping $1 million to purchase land for mountain bike trails on Washington’s Bainbridge Island, as well as conserving land and expanding an existing dog park.

A Chicago man took an “epic” bike ride across Indiana just to dine at the nearest Waffle House. Although the real story is how he was able to make almost the entire trip on offroad bike paths.

The New York Times offers a photo essay examining bike style around the city. These days my only sense of style is whatever will look least humiliating in public.

Island Press introduces Bike Easy, which has played a significant role in the remarkable transformation of New Orleans into a bike friendly — or at least, friendlier — city.

Miami joins the Vision Zero club, as the city announces plans to eliminate traffic deaths and serious injuries by 2030. Let’s hope they take it more seriously than Los Angeles does, like planning to remove bike lanes and sidewalks to widen Burbank Blvd.

 

International

Momentum Magazine offers a primer on the different types of cargo bikes.

An IT professional from a tiny Uruguayan pueblo is now riding a bicycle through Mexico, in the fourth year of his quixotic quest to ride from Uruguay to Alaska.

A Canadian girl got a new BMX bike for being honest enough to return a bike a stranger had given her, after learning it had been stolen. Although the question is why did a stranger give her a stolen bike to begin with.

This is who we share the road with. A British man will spend six years behind bars for intentionally running down and killing another driver in a road rage dispute.

The UK press continues their onslaught of photos contradicting Prince Harry’s claim that he was never he was able to ride a bike with his father, heir-to-the-thrown Prince Charles.

Members of a Dublin bike club testify that a speeding driver rounded a bend on the wrong side of the roadway moments before slamming into a woman who couldn’t get her bike off the road in time; the driver is on trial for her death.

You’ve got to be kidding. When a Welsh bicyclist tried to take video of dangerous drivers to the local police, they threatened to charge him for swearing at the motorists who nearly killed him, instead.

The Air Force Times tells the story of a top secret suicide squad of bike-riding Jewish commandos dropped behind German lines during World War II.

More proof that bicycling pays. A study of bike paths in Helsinki, Finland, shows a gain of the equivalent of $4.41 for every $1.22 spent to place bikeways along major arteries in the city. Then again, they increase property values, too.

 

Competitive Cycling

The BBC questions whether anyone can beat Columbia’s Egan Bernal, saying the pink leader’s jersey is his to lose.

However, Cycling Weekly says the race is far from over, and offers five things to watch for as it enters its final week.

American Joe Dombrowski rode the cycling roller coaster in the just the first week of the Giro, going from winning a stage one day to crashing out the next.

Cycling Tips introduces Tim Declercq, who they call one of the world’s best domestiques, and who is always at the front of the action.

International politics once again reaches into the sports world, as Germany responds to the hijacking and apparent torture of an opposition journalist in Belarus by pulling out of next month’s Elite Track European Championships in the country. And yes, that’s the right move; hopefully other countries will follow their lead.

Durango, Colorado’s annual Iron Horse Bicycle Classic mountain bike race has proven to be a launching pad for cycling careers, including rising US WorldTour star Sepp Kuss.

 

Finally…

The answer to N+1 could soon be a subscription. Your next ebike could go 40 mph — as long as you’re willing to get a helmet, registration and motorcycle license.

And if your toddler feels left out by the time you spend on your Peloton, just build him one of his own.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Metro to study Beautiful Blvd and 2nd plan in Eagle Rock, CicLAvia helps LA dine Al Fresco, and 250 pound SaMo ebikes

Before we start, I want to clarify Tuesday’s report on the death of cyclocross champ Laurence Malone in Lancaster CA on Monday.

As more information came in, it became clear that the initial reports that Malone was riding his bike were wrong; he was actually driving on Highway 138 when his car was hit head-on by the driver of a semi-truck.

I’ve rewritten my report on his death as a result, and am no longer counting his death among this year’s bicycling fatalities.

Today’s photo is a rendering of one section of the Beautiful Boulevard plan, from Eagle Rock Forward

………

Metro voted to move forward with additional studies of the resident-driven Beautiful Boulevard plan for Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock, as well as another plan that with keep two traffic lanes and bike lanes, while reducing medians and parking.

The board followed the lead of CD14 Councilmember Kevin de León, who called for additional public input on top of the numerous meetings that have already been held, and countless comments previously submitted.

Bike Talk posted the audio for the last 12 commenters discussing the proposals at yesterday’s virtual Metro meeting.

Meanwhile, the LA Times questioned why de León is trying to stall the transit and climate friendly plan for Eagle Rock.

In theory, there’s nothing wrong with more public discussion and analysis. But activists in Eagle Rock are understandably worried that the delay is an attempt to undermine the Beautiful Boulevard concept in favor of a car-centric view of the streets. That would be disappointing, considering how De León has touted his commitment to fighting climate change and his support for transit and safer streets.

There’s a long history of L.A. leaders proclaiming their climate leadership only to abandon climate-minded street design at the first cries of opposition.

Unfortunately, Los Angeles continues to kick the climate can down the road, leaving it to others to make the hard decisions our elected leaders lack the courage to make.

We have no choice but to provide safe, clean and efficient alternatives to driving, as an ever increasing number of cars slowly grind our streets to a halt, without destroying the livability of our communities.

The Beautiful Boulevard plan does just that, enhancing the community while providing safe space for transit, walking and riding a bike.

We have no choice but to move forward with plans like this throughout LA if we hope to save our city.

And ourselves.

………

CicLAvia is leveraging its experience with open streets to guide Los Angeles in expanding the city’s COVID-19 Al Fresco outdoor dining program, and making it permanent.

“CicLAvia has been utilizing its open streets planning expertise in a new way by reaching out to smaller ‘mom and pop’ restaurants in communities most impacted by the pandemic,” said CicLAvia Executive Director Romel Pascual.

“By offering free assistance to these ‘hidden gems’ via the L.A. Al Fresco program, CicLAvia helps these restaurants accommodate more customers so they can serve their neighborhoods safely and with greater capacity, stay open and continue to prosper.”

At the same time, CicLAvia is planning the return of the country’s largest and most successful open streets event, which was halted last year due to the pandemic.

A new route and date is expected to be announced soon.

………

A Playa del Rey letter writer who identifies himself as a 63-year old cyclist complains about the presence of “250 pound E-bikes traveling at 20 mph or more” on the beachfront bike path, piloted by “clueless riders of all ages.”

He goes on to call for them to be banned from the popular pathway.

However, ebikes are already prohibited from the bike path in Santa Monica, and numerous bikes have ticketed and confiscated in the past.

Correction — Santa Monica now allows ebikes on the beach bike path; somehow I missed that. Thanks to Howard for the correction

And anything that can travel over 20 mph is barred by the state from being ridden on any bike path.

Never mind that even the heaviest ebikes check in at a little over 50 pounds, rather than 250, which very few riders would even be able to lift.

………

This is who we share the road with.

God help us.

………

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

Campus police at Cal State Northridge are warning women to be on the lookout for a suspected serial groper; unfortunately, the only description is a man in a black hoodie on a black bicycle.

………

Local

Metro will host a virtual meeting at 6pm today to discuss first mile/last mile bike and pedestrian connections near the Expo/Crenshaw Station; another meeting will be held Tuesday afternoon.

The Beverly Hills city council will review the environmental impact report and consider plan approvals for the massive One Beverly Hills project at 7pm tonight; Better Bike calls for the newly bike friendly city to insist on bike lanes to and through the project on the site of the former Robinson’s May department store.

 

State

A San Diego councilmember voices his support for building a bike and pedestrian bridge across the San Diego River in Mission Trails Regional Park in honor of a 21-year-old student who drowned at the crossing in January.

A Bay Area writer says the recent death of local legend of Joe Shami, known as the King of Mount Diablo, is a reminder for drivers to put their phones down and watch for bicyclists.

 

National

Cycling News explains why your ebike can’t recharge while you pedal or brake.

The Colorado lawyer representing the family of fallen national master’s road champ Gwen Inglis is calling for the charges against the allegedly stoned driver to be bumped up to 1st degree murder to reflect his extreme indifference to human life.

Colorado mountain resort Steamboat Springs approved permitting the state’s Safety Stop, aka Stop As Yield, in the town; unlike other states, Colorado allows individual cities to choose whether or nor to allow bike riders to roll stops after checking for oncoming traffic. And the sky has not fallen there, or any other state that allows it.

Iowa’s popular RAGBRAI bike ride across the state returns with coronavirus safety precautions in place this year, after being cancelled last year.

The pandemic has shown the need for more bike lanes and sidewalks in Connecticut, with up to a 50% jump in bicycling, and two to three times as many pedestrians.

A New Jersey bill would ban bike licenses across the state, after white cops in Perth Amboy recently confiscated the bikes of Black and brown teens for not having one.

Speaking of New Jersey, the state is considering a new law requiring drivers to change lanes to pass someone on a bicycle or give a four-foot passing distance; however, like California, it contains the same clause allowing drivers to ignore those requirements by slowing down and being prepared to stop, making it relatively toothless.

An enterprising 12-year old Philadelphia boy responded to the shutdown of bike shops during the pandemic by starting his own bike repair service.

A Pennsylvania bike co-op marked the Ride of Silence by placing 22 ghost bikes on the steps of the state capitol, in a powerful reminder of the 22 people who lost their lives riding in the state last year.

 

International

The popup bike lanes on London’s Westminster Bridge will be made permanent  after proving their worth during the pandemic. That’s not the case in Los Angeles, though, where no popup bike lanes will be made permanent because shortsighted city officials failed to install any.

You’ve got to be kidding. An Edinburgh councilmember is being investigated by an ethical standards watchdog, after responding to a story about barbed wire strung across a bike path by calling for those fighting popup bike and pedestrian spaces to take responsibility for their behavior.

Moscow traffic control cops are taking to their bicycles to keep drivers out of the city’s bike lanes.

Motorcycling great Troy Bayliss was seriously injured in a head-on collision with another bicycle rider; the three-time World Superbike champ returned to his Australian home to recover from a fractured vertebrae and spinal damage. Been there, done that. I fractured the same vertebrae in my 20s when a jack broke and dropped the car I was working on down on me.

 

Competitive Cycling

Swiss cyclist Mauro Schmid captured yesterday’s 11th stage of the Giro for his first win as a pro.

Remco Evenepoel could have used a virtual Jens Voigt in his ear, yelling “Shut up, legs!” Instead he lost two minutes to race leader Egan Bernal on the Giro’s gravel stage yesterday, complaining that his “legs felt empty.”

VeloNews looks at the “unsung hero” working to help keep Evenepoel at the front of the pack, although he might look slightly less heroic after yesterday.

 

Finally…

Presenting the ebike for people who aren’t ready to give up their cars. That feeling when you’re collateral damage in a police chase.

And the perfect bike for anyone who still wants to be a cowboy when they grow up.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

%d bloggers like this: