Tag Archive for ebikes

Guest Post: For Real E-bike Safety, We Need Safe Infrastructure and Education, Not Licensing and Criminalization

I’ve known John Lloyd almost as long as I’ve been involved in bicycle advocacy, and admired his insights and opinions since the days of his old Boyonabike blog,

A respected professor of history at Cal Poly Pomona, John also serves as co-chair of the campus Alternative Transportation Committee, and has long been a leading voice for sustainable transportation and safe streets for all ages and abilities.

As an experienced ebike rider, John’s comments on Tasha Boerner’s new ebike licensing ban caught my attention, and I asked if he’d share them here with you. 

We’ll be back tomorrow with our usual Morning Links to catch you up on all the latest bike news. 

Photo by Max J. from Pexels

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This month Assemblymember Tasha Boerner introduced AB 2234, a bill that would require licensing of e-bike riders and prohibit children under the age of 12 from riding e-bikes. The bill would create “an e-bike license program” that would require all e-bike riders to take an online test and have a state-issued photo ID confirming passage of the test. The bill is short on specifics, but establishes a “stakeholders’ working group” to “work on recommendations to establish an e-bike training program and license.” If the working group were to establish such a recommendation, it is not clear whether it would then go back to the legislature for ratification or whether it would be immediately implemented by the DMV. The bill does seem to make a nod toward an e-bike education program to be administered by “local agencies and school districts,” but even that is not clear. There are good bike education programs in existence that can and should be scaled up, but of course, funding would be key to the success of any education program. The bill explicitly does not provide funding for any such program.  

What concerns me is the focus on creating new categories of illegality for people riding bikes while doing nothing about our dangerous infrastructure. This law would make it a crime for a person over the age of 12 to ride an e-bike without a license and this approach raises a number of important questions the legislature needs to ask before the bill is brought to a vote. Legislators ought to ask themselves if they’re willing to fund an education program at the level required to make it meaningful and widely available to people of all income levels. 

There is also a question of driver education. Many of us who ride will tell you that there is a significant portion of the licensed driver population that show no evidence of awareness of state laws regarding how to drive safely and especially how to drive safely around pedestrians and people on bikes. Any such education program must address driver education as well. 

Criminalizing unlicensed e-bike riding is bound to have unintended consequences for many communities who already face disproportionate police scrutiny. It is not difficult to imagine that law enforcement agencies in some cities would use the e-bike law as a pretext to stop and harass low income people, youth, and people of color. In my experience, a surprising number of law enforcement officers misinterpret traffic laws as they apply to bicycles, especially when it comes to subjective interpretation of things like lane positioning, sidewalk riding, use of crosswalks, or even what constitutes an e-bike. Some “e-bikes,” especially those popular with many younger riders, look more like motorbikes, and some look like regular bikes. How are police supposed to know which is which? This bill is a blank check to police to stop any person on a bike on the flimsiest of pretexts. Cyclists of color will tell you how often this already happens. This bill will provide even more pretexts. Encounters with law enforcement over minor violations often do little to improve safety, to say nothing of making it harder to simply ride an e-bike without fear of police harassment if you’re young and Black or Latinx. 

Bike licensing is a red-herring and a distraction from the far bigger problem of traffic violence caused by drivers–the vast majority of whom are licensed by the state. What problem is licensing designed to solve? The state’s investment in safe bike infrastructure has been anemic for years and fixing unsafe road conditions would do far more for e-bike safety than an online test. Indeed, Assemblymember Boerner’s bill follows close on the heels of the Governor’s proposed $200 million cut to the state’s already inadequate Active Transportation Plan (ATP). If the issue really is the safety of e-bike riders, providing more funding for safe infrastructure is the most important thing our political leaders can do. 

For years Californians who ride bikes have pleaded with state leaders for the resources to make safer streets a reality. We’ve got plenty of examples of bike plans that go unfulfilled, Vision Zero and complete streets declarations that are forgotten soon after they’re passed. I’ve got decades of experience as a rider, I know the laws and ride safely because I want to get home safely to my family. I’d like nothing better than a state with a serious commitment to the safety of all road users, because all too often the roads aren’t safe for those of us on bikes and e-bikes, even when we follow all the rules. Many longtime bike safety advocates like myself have had the experience of asking our city for a bike lane to make riding safer, only to be answered by a nonsequitur, “what about cyclists who don’t obey the law?” That’s what Assemblymember Boerner’s bill feels like. We ask for infrastructure to keep us safe from cars and get e-bike criminalization from car-brained politicians instead.  

If legislators want to get serious about safety, I ask that they start by getting serious about increased funding for the state’s Active Transportation Program. Next, provide funding for universal bike safety education programs for youth and adults through schools districts, municipal parks and recreation centers, and local community groups. Third, upgrade driver education so that people are aware of the fact that bicyclists have a right to the road and how and when to pass safely. 

Licenses and criminalization won’t make anyone safer, but they will discourage e-bike riding and result in one more excuse to harass marginalized people on e-bikes, and that shouldn’t be the consequence of misguided, if well-meaning “safety” legislation. 

 

Cops look for hit-and-run driver — and bicyclist, Boerner set to unveil ebike bill for kids, and demand safer streets now

Just 328 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
Stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand LA Mayor Karen Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we face just walking and biking on the mean streets of Los Angeles.

Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can. We’re nearly up to 900 signatures, so let’s try to get it up over 1,000 this week!

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My apologies, once again, for yesterday’s unexcused absence.

Let’s just say diabetes sucks, and get on with it. 

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Authorities in LA County are investigating a pair of hit-and-runs. Although only one of the suspects was actually in a motor vehicle.

First up is a late January crash in Long Beach that left a bike rider with serious, but non-life threatening injuries.

The victim was riding with a group of bicyclists traveling west on Fourth Street at Atlantic Ave around 9:50 pm on Thursday, January 25th, when he was struck by driver headed south on Atlantic, who fled without stopping.

Police are looking for the driver of a silver Nissan sedan with chrome rims. Anyone with further information is urged to contact Long Beach Police investigators at 562/570-7355.

Photo from Long Beach Police Department

That was followed by the hunt for a hit-and-run bike rider who left an elderly woman lying severely injured in a Sierra Madre street.

The woman was walking near North Baldwin Ave and Highland Ave around 10 am this past Saturday when she was struck by the bike rider, who also continued without stopping.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to contact Detective Ascano at 626/355-1414, or nascano@cityofsierramadre.com.

And yes, bicyclists have the same obligation to stop after a crash that drivers do, and could face the same penalties if they don’t.

Photo from Sierra Madre police department

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It looks like Encinitas Assemblymember Tasha Boerner is ready to introduce her promised ebike bill, which will require anyone without a driver’s license to pass an online ebike safety training course before they can buy an ebike in California.

The bill appears to be directed towards children, though it could apply to adults without a license, as well.

It also prohibits any child under 12 from riding any class of ebike, and establishes diversion programs as an alternative to ticketing children, which is already allowed under current bicycle regulations.

Personally, I’d prefer to see that ban raised to 14 years old, and reclassify throttle-controlled ebikes as mo-peds, requiring a driver’s license to operate, and prohibited from being used in bike lanes or pathways of any sort.

I also hope the bill clarifies that the license requirement does not apply to anyone over the age of 18.

And it raises the question of what happens when a parent with a driver’s license buys an ebike for a child without one. Would the parent be prohibited from being able to buy an ebike for their own child?

But we’ll see what ends up in the actual text.

Thanks to Malcomb Watson for the heads-up. 

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As the previous tweet hinted at, Streets Are For Everyone, aka SAFE, says you have the chance tomorrow to tell Mayor Bass that we need safer streets.

Mayor Bass wants to hear from us!

The UCLA Bunche Center is conducting a series of Community Listening Sessions, as a part of a City of Los Angeles Community Safety Research Study. The study’s goal is to identify and document a broad and representative understanding of the perceptions and realities of public safety (and of its management) of residents in the City of Los Angeles.

Join the discussion and raise your voice about important safety issues in your neighborhood. Please include the need for safety on our streets for cyclists, pedestrians, and all users. With 336 deaths on LA City roads last year, this is a vital safety concern. 

Join this community listening session, and let Mayor Bass know that you want safer streets.

Virtual Community Listening Session
February 8, 2024
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Click Here to Register

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Streets For All — not to be confused with SAFE — has updated their voter guide for next month’s election, with endorsements for six of the seven LA council races, as well as council races in Glendale and Pasadena.

Meanwhile, Boyle Heights Beat is hosting a candidate forum for CD 14 this Saturday.

Personally, though, I’m still struggling to decide between state Assemblymember Laura Friedman and state Senator Anthony Portantino for my next Congress member, either of whom would provide a strong, bike-friendly voice for traffic safety in DC.

I only wish they weren’t running in the same district, because both deserve to win.

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Velo marks Black History Month with a trio of articles recounting Black bicyclists from the early days of bicycling.

First up is what they call the little-known story of the US Army’s all-Black Bicycle Corps. Which isn’t so little known anymore, after several historical articles over the past couple years.

Then there’s 1890s Black cyclist Woody Hedspath, who they refer to as Major Taylor Number Two, honing his skills in summertime “colored fairs” during the Jim Crow era before moving on to greater accomplishments.

Finally, they write about Kittie Knox, the young Boston woman who broke racial and gender barriers in the 1890s, becoming the first Black woman to join the League of American Wheelmen, the forerunner to today’s League of American Bicyclists, or Bike League, before they changed the rules to exclude people of color.

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The Bambino was one of us.

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Someone finally found a good use for a Tesla pickup.

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It’s now 48 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 31 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law, and counting.

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

No bias here. After British tabloids attack a Birmingham bike lane as a 10 million pound “waste of money” that “no one uses,” a local paper finds it’s actually one of the most popular bikeways in the city.

Ireland’s Green Party called the Sinn Féin party’s objections to a protected bike lane “populist, anti-cycling, anti-road safety, anti-climate action bolloxology.” Although I kinda suspect they made that last word up.

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

A Portland, Oregon letter writer who seems to have an overly high opinion of his fearlessness and bike riding abilities says the city shouldn’t invest in more bike lanes or public transit until they clean them up and more people use them

Police in Mobile, Alabama busted a man riding a bicycle on multiple drug charges after searching him following a short pursuit, begun because he was exhibiting “suspicious behavior.” Let’s hope he can afford a good lawyer, because “suspicious behavior” is entirely subjective, and not probable cause to make a stop.

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Local 

The Eastsider reports that Bike LA, the former Los Angele County Bicycle Coalition, has been awarded a $100,000 grant to “evaluate transportation gaps and identify the mobility challenges, needs, preferences, and priorities of Boyle Heights and East LA residents,” one of 12 similar grants across the state. Let’s hope that’s enough to sustain the organization, which has struggled financially in recent years, but offers a much-needed voice for bicyclists in the LA area.

The Los Angeles Times explains daylighting, and why you’ll now need to park further back from an intersection to avoid a ticket.

Santa Monica police will be conducting yet another bike and pedestrian safety operation tomorrow, ticketing any violation that could put either group at risk, 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 written up.

Speaking of Streets For All, the street safety PAC is hosting a bike ride and fundraiser in Mar Vista this Saturday. Saturday is also the Lunar New Year, so there could be some major dragon energy there.

The Alhambra and South Pasadena bike ride hosted by Safe Streets for SGV and South Pas Active that was scrubbed because of rain last weekend has been rescheduled for this Sunday, when the weather looks more promising. And should give you time to get back home in time for that big sportsball thing.

 

State

Good question. The Los Angeles Times asks why the state is widening the 15 Freeway in San Bernardino County, in conflict with the state’s climate goals, which are supposed to be given priority but clearly aren’t. Meanwhile, a new nationwide coalition is calling for a halt to freeway expansion, arguing that “Endless highway expansions are pulling our country into an environmental, budgetary, and public health crisis.”

A San Francisco bike rider was lucky to escape with non-life threatening injuries when he was struck by a Waymo driverless car, which evidently couldn’t spot him following a truck through an intersection. They’re called Waymo because they’re probably way mo’ dangerous than most cars with drivers.

San Francisco banned the use or sale of damaged or recycled ebike and e-scooter batteries, along with limiting how many can be stored in a single home.

 

National

Momentum offers more on the groundbreaking new study that shows cities with high levels of bicycling are usually safer for all road users — and by extension, cities that are safer for bicyclists usually have high levels of bicycling.

NPR considers what Vision Zero has and hasn’t accomplished in American cities. The only thing it’s really accomplished in Los Angeles is making traffic violence part of the conversation, without actually doing anything about it.

Cyclist calls Moab, Utah a gravel cycling mecca like nowhere else on Earth.

The Colorado Supreme Court upheld a $2,400 restitution judgement against a bike thief for damaging the victim’s car, after the bike’s owner used it to give chase and cut in front of the thief to stop him as he made his getaway.

A Rhode Island man is suing Trek and Shimano for $2 million, alleging his bike’s brake lever impaled his thigh in a crash due to faulty design.

A New Jersey man was killed when a state trooper driving an unmarked SUV crashed into his bike; no word on whether the trooper was on duty at the time.

A 72-year old Florida woman was killed when her bicycle was rear-ended by a 92-year old woman driving a truck. Once again raising the question of how old is too old to drive safely. 

 

International

GCN offers five reasons ebikes are better than regular bikes, along with five reasons they’re better than cars.

Momentum recounts the wildest bike lane obstacles, from fat, indecisive squirrels to discarded e-scooters and banana peels.

An English research fellow writes that ebikes offer huge promise for sustainable transport in rural tourist areas.

Bicycling says Paris is now a bicyclist’s paradise after closing 100 streets to cars. Read it on AOL this time if the magazine blocks you.

A writer for Men’s Journal explains why he’s stoked to ride his bike across Morocco. Which should go without saying, because Morocco.

 

Competitive Cycling

Velo writes about Eritrean WorldTour rookie Henok Mulubrhan, who they refer to as the “new hot prospect” already making waves as an African phenom on a mission.

British Cycling, the governing group for nearly all bicycling in the UK, will take over operations of the annual Tour of Britain, which was at risk of folding after the previous organizer shut down.

 

Finally…

Your next pair of Reebok’s could be an ebike and an e-scooter.

And the 2026 Wold Cup final will take place in a stadium where it’s literally illegal to walk; thanks to Steven Hallett for the link.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

WeHo votes on Vision Zero Monday, not guilty plea in Magnus White death, and popular comic dies in solo ebike crash

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

We’re running neck-and-neck with last year’s record-breaking total — which means we could easily set a new record for the ninth time in a row. Or fail for the first time ever. 

Which way it goes is entirely up to you.

Thanks to Nina N for her generous donation to support SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy, and keep it coming your way every day. 

So don’t wait.

Drop what you’re doing, and give now!

And if you have any money left, toss a few bucks to LA Streetsblog for their fundraising campaign

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Days left to launch the California ebike incentive program as promised this fall: 6

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If you live, work or ride in West Hollywood, clear your schedule for Monday night.

Because the WeHo City Council is scheduled to consider the city’s first Vision Zero Action Plan at Monday’s council meeting.

The meeting is set to begin at 6 pm in the council chambers at the new West Hollywood City Hall, at 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard. It’s Item 5C on Monday’s Council agenda.

As we’ve learned the hard way — hello, Los Angeles — a Vision Zero plan is only as good as the political will of city leaders to fund and implement it.

But so far, West Hollywood’s leadership seems committed to carrying out their decisions — including the recent decision to only build protected bike lanes.

So this one is worth showing up and fighting for.

Thanks to David for the heads-up.

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More on the arrest of the driver who killed 17-year old US Cycling Team member Magnus White in Boulder, Colorado earlier this year.

The 23-year old driver appeared in court Wednesday, and entered a plea of not guilty to a charge of vehicular homicide, a class 4 felony with a maximum of 6 years in prison, along with a potential fine ranging anywhere from two thousand to half a million dollars.

Yeva Smiliansk described herself as a Ukrainian refugee, with no criminal history there or here in the US.

According to Smiliansk, she ran down White as he rode on the side of the roadway because her steering failed, while prosecutors allege she chose to drive while sleep deprived, and fell asleep at the wheel.

White was training for the junior mountain bike world championships in Scotland, where he was scheduled to compete just weeks later.

Meanwhile, his parents discussed their grief over the loss of their son, who would have carried a 4.2 GPA into his senior year of high school, despite competing at an international level.

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In another followup, we’re learning more about the tragic death of popular standup comic Kenny DeForest, who died surrounded by family and friends in a Brooklyn hospital on Wednesday, nearly a week after crashing his ebike.

Despite initial reports that he was struck by a driver — and the subsequent anger of his fellow comediansDeadline reports he was injured in a solo crash while riding near Brooklyn’s Prospect Park.

However, police were not called to the scene, and there’s no word on what may have caused the crash.

The 37-year old comedian appeared on MTV Decoded, The Late Late Show with James Corden, Late Night With Seth Meyers, the Just For Laughs TV series Straight Up, Stand Up, HBO’s Crashing, and Comedy Central’s Tales From The Trip.

The Springfield, Missouri native had also recently released a standup special on YouTube.

A crowdfunding campaign to help pay his medical expenses has raised more than $178,000, easily topping the $150,000 goal.

I’m told that DeForest’s death hit close to home for LA writers, who got to know him during the recent writer’s strike, when he participated in several of the Bike the Strike rides.

Thanks to Mike Burk and Nina Moskol for the tip.

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‘Tis the season.

First responders in California’s Alameda County answered a little girl’s letter to Santa, giving her the bicycle she asked for, along with some milk for her baby brother.

Volunteers in Vancouver, Washington built 800 bikes to be handed out to children during the holidays.

The nonprofit Boise Bike Project will give away 500 bicycles to kids in need this year, despite a local driver’s best efforts to kill their building.

Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Jayden Daniels will team with the founder of the Raising Cane’s restaurant chain to give away over 1,000 bikes to kids in cities across the US.

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Local 

Santa Monica cops will conduct another bike and pedestrian safety operation today, ticketing anyone who commits a violation that could endanger someone walking or riding a bike. So ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limits, so you’re not the one who gets ticketed. 

REI is closing their very busy Santa Monica location, while a new ebike dealer opens its doors in the city.

Police in Redondo Beach asked parents to control their ebike-riding kids so they don’t have to.

The Acorn has more on the half-million dollar grant to build 11.5 miles of bike lanes in Agoura Hills.

 

State

A Bakersfield bicyclist was collateral damage when a driver ran a red light and slammed into a truck, which was pushed into the crosswalk where the victim was riding; he was taken to the hospital with critical injuries.

A Santa Barbara writer says the city needs to learn from the Netherlands by slowing traffic and building safe bike infrastructure to encourage higher bicycling rates.

 

National

The Biden administration has instructed federal employees to use sustainable transportation and zero-emission vehicles, including bikeshare, whenever possible.

Bike riders from across the US share what keeps them coming back to their favorite local bike shops.

Hawaii has seen a nearly 20% drop in traffic deaths this year, although bicycling fatalities reached their highest level yet, with nine riders killed this year.

Maine could soon follow California’s lead in limiting the number of gas-powered vehicles sold in the state.

Automated speed cams passed the Pennsylvania legislature, with the support of local advocacy groups.

 

International

Road.cc rates the best reflective bikewear and gear for the coming year.

 

Competitive Cycling

A writer for Men’s Journal says he dove into the deep end of ultra-distance bike racing so you don’t have to, encouraging others to learn from his mistakes in the 800-mile Bohemian Border Bash.

 

Finally…

Wear a lighted bike helmet without looking like a geek. And what it’s like to actually live with one of us.

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Chag sameach!

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Better bike lanes beat hi-viz for safety, commuting 46 miles — each way — by ebike, and Sunset4All gaslit by O’Farrell

It’s Day 12 of the of the 9th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Which means you have just 19 days left to support SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy.

It was a slow weekend while I was out of town for my sister’s birthday, but the fund drive is still ahead of last year at this time.

Please join me in thanking Bonnie W, Patt M, Plurabelle Books and Damian K, who says he’s only here for the corgis, for their generous donations to keep all the freshest bike news and corgi pics coming your way every day. 

So take a moment and give now!

It’s okay, we’ll wait. 

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He gets it.

A writer for Velo says better bike lanes will stop bicyclists from getting hit by drivers — not lighting yourself up like a Christmas tree.

There is one proven way to lower the risk of cyclists being killed: adding quality bike lanes.

A quality bike lane works for cyclists of even the most novice of levels to help them feel comfortable moving around their community. Usually, they’re separated from the road, or at the very least partitioned in a way that provides freedom of movement and opportunity to get around.

Hi-viz and fluorescent gear won’t stop inattentive drivers from hitting cyclists. It won’t stop a driver angered by the mere inconvenience of having to share the road. Unfortunately, it won’t stop drivers who mean well but don’t see a cyclist either. It’s a bike lane. More specifically, it’s separated bike lanes that improve cyclist safety.

It’s worth taking a few minutes from your day to read the whole thing.

Because he’s right, even though I ride with enough lights to guide Santa’s sleigh these days.

Thanks to Joel Falter for the heads-up. 

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He gets it, too.

Los Angeles Times Letters Editor Paul Thornton shares his experience after buying an ebike to beat traffic on a commute between his Alhambra home and the Times offices El Segundo that can stretch to two hours or more.

Tell that to someone who says you can’t use a bicycle for LA’s long commutes.

That was until I bought an electric bike and just this week started using it to ride the 46-mile round trip between home and work.

On Tuesday morning, by which time L.A.’s rush-hour traffic had fully rebounded from its holiday break, getting from Alhambra to El Segundo by e-bike took 90 minutes. The electric motor flattened hills and helped with attaining traffic speed sooner.

The commute home lasted 80 minutes. That’s 46 rush-hour miles in less than three hours — typically what it takes in a car, and less than the same journey on Metro rail.

But as we’ve all learned by now, even the best bike commute isn’t all sunshine and roses.

Thornton says bicycle safety is dangerously backsliding due to a lack of safe bike infrastructure, even as cities rush to catch up.

Big SUVs and trucks, with front ends resembling battering rams, are outselling all other vehicle types and killing pedestrians and cyclists with greater ease than ever before. Even many of the “protected” bike lanes popping up around Los Angeles, which separate cyclists from vehicles with flimsy plastic bollards that collapse if hit by a car, offer barely any protection.

To L.A.’s everlasting shame, traffic deaths have ballooned to crisis proportions since then-Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the goal of eliminating them completely by adopting Vision Zero in 2015. That year, according to the group Streets Are for Everyone, 203 people died in L.A. traffic; in 2022, 312 were killed.

Once again, it’s worth taking a few minutes from your busy Tuesday to read it.

Because he succinctly captures both the risks and the opportunity ebikes present, on a personal level.

And gives me a nice shoutout in the process.

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The Guardian takes a look at the Sunset4All project to improve safety and livability along LA’s busy — and deadly — Sunset Blvd, led by LA Bike Dad Terence Heuston.

Heuston says that at the time his group formed, safety problems with the Sunset corridor were already on many radars. The section of Sunset made it on the LA department of transportation’s Vision Zero High Injury Network, a list of the most dangerous roadways in Los Angeles. And safer biking on Sunset fit with Los Angeles’ Mobility Plan 2035, a blueprint launched in 2015 to transform LA’s streets into “complete streets” – roadways that can be safely used by bikers, pedestrians, cars and mass transit alike – by the year 2035. Furthermore, in 2015 the LA Metro Active Transport (Mat) program identified the Sunset corridor as high priority for safety improvements because it would make a significant impact on resident use of active modes of transportation, as well as the Metro.

The clear solution was creating protected bike lanes along the corridor, which studies have shown can improve safety for everyone on the street.

With Heuston leading the charge, activists were buoyed by the idea that they were advocating for something so many agreed should be done. “We were hoping this could be a model project,” says Heuston. “Sunset is this iconic boulevard in the most iconic ‘car-centric’ city in North America. The idea was: if we can change it here, then we can change it anywhere.”

They had community buy-in thanks to countless events like the coffee walk gathering and long hours spent talking to various groups, lots of volunteers and the support of their city council – or so they thought.

Unfortunately, Heuston and the other volunteers were gaslighted by former CD13 Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, who told them to hire expensive independent traffic engineers to create plans and renderings for the project.

So the plans and renderings crowdfunded by the group just ended up in the circular file.

Hugo Soto-Martinez, who defeated O’Farrell for District 13 in the 2022 general election, says his predecessor lied to the group. Studies conducted by third parties aren’t accepted by the city. O’Farrell was “just sitting on the project”, Soto-Martinez said.

And yes, once again, it’s worth taking the time from your busy day to read the whole thing.

If for no other reason than to fully grasp the frustrations bike and safety advocates experience dealing with our auto-addled city leaders.

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Dr. Grace Peng calls your attention to a proposal to improve bike-carrying bus service in the Bay Cities. And wants your support to put an actual ebike user on the Redondo Beach Ebike Task Force.

Preferably her.

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This is who we share the road with. A Bellevue, Washington driver turned a local restaurant into a drive thru, the easy way.

Thanks to Ralph Durham for the heads-up.

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

No bias here. A Claremont, California letter writer applauds himself for striking a nerve with the “bike lane fanatics,” then proceeds to say a recent survey showing overwhelming local support for bike lanes doesn’t pass the smell test. Which evidently, is the only proof he requires. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the link. 

A New York bike rider shares “infuriating” video of the city’s drivers blatantly ignoring bicycle infrastructure, with “numerous sizable vehicles obstructing an already small bike lane.”

No bias here, either, as London’s Daily Mail accuses the city’s mayor of chopping down a historic palm tree to make room for “yet another bike lane for his beloved cycling constituents,” before conceding that the tree was merely moved to another location.

Organizers of an Oxford, England Christmas market threatened to cancel the event because city officials demanded they maintain bicycle access, instead of blocking a bike lane.

French officials decided to celebrate the season by plopping a large Christmas tree in the middle of a trans-European bike path. Because why wouldn’t they?

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

Bakersfield police arrested one person and seized seven bicycles after a large group of bicyclists took over city streets on Saturday, allegedly causing traffic hazards and disturbing the peace, as well as engaging in thefts, vandalism and at least one assault with a deadly weapon.

The family of a 91-year old British Army veteran says the ebike rider who crashed into him will likely get off with a slap on the wrist because the country has failed to update its bike laws, after the man died of his injuries three months after he was struck.

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Local 

LA Weekly takes a long-delayed look at Mobility Plan 2035, which promised a transformation of Los Angeles streets when it was passed by the city council in 2015 — but fails to mention that it was promptly shelved and forgotten, in a story with the depth of something written by AI.

CD10 Councilmember Heather Hutt called for new protected bike lanes on a 3.1-mile stretch of Venice Blvd between Fairfax and Arlington avenues.

A coalition of South LA organizations is launching a new ebike library pilot called Power Up South Central, similar to an existing program in Pacoima.

Tomorrow is the last day to offer comments on the Glendale Bicycle Transportation Plan.

Santa Monica’s mayor proudly proclaims that the city will soon be the bicycling capital of the world, warning Amsterdam to watch out as she opens the new protected intersection on 17th Street. Correction: I originally misidentified the mayor of Santa Monica as a man, rather than a woman. But with a name like Gleam, I had a 50/50 shot. Thanks to Joe Linton for setting me straight. 

A Santa Monica letter writer says speed limits and road design must change if the city hopes to save lives.

 

State

The Orange County Bicycle Coalition has teamed with CABO and the American Bicycling Education Association to create a short video explaining CVC 21202, the basic law governing the operation of bicycles on the roadway. Thanks to Phillip Young for the link.

A Fullerton writer calls for safer bike and pedestrian detour around construction zones. Something that’s just as needed in Los Angeles, where construction work too often reminds us that people walking and biking barely enjoy second-class status.

 

National

Cycling Weekly offers a long list of reasons why roadies should ride in the dirt this winter.

A Wyoming website profiles one of the state’s most senior wildlife biologists, who is also a ninth-degree blackbelt in karate, the former mayor of Laramie, and a founder of the Tour de Wyoming cycling event.

A Houston magazine calls ghost bikes painful reminders of the city’s cyclist death problem, with over 100 such memorials dotting the city.

Bicycling says convicted killer Kaitlin Armstrong is appealing her 90-year sentence for fatally shooting gravel cycling champ Moriah “Mo” Willson, in a perceived love-triangle with pro cyclist Colin Strickland. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

A 30-year old Chicago woman faces charges for the drunken death of a 59-year old man riding a bicycle in October, while running three stop signs and driving in the bike lane, with a BAC two and a half times the legal limit.

The mayor of Anne Arbor, Michigan is one of us, urging others to join him in commuting by ebike.

 

International

Momentum tells Elon Musk’s vaunted Cybertruck to move over, because ebikes are the real sustainability game-changer, and considers the right and wrong way to lock your bike.

Bike riders continue to flock to Bolivia’s famed Death Road, despite the nearly three-mile high roadway claiming the lives of nearly 20 bicyclists every year.

Good question. The parents of a Newfoundland teenager want to know why the driver who hit him was able to get behind the wheel despite a lifetime ban on driving, after the man fled the scene after hitting the kid as he was riding his bike.

Forbes talks with a representative of the European Cycling Foundation attending the COP 28 climate conference about the role bicycling can play in confronting the climate crisis.

An angry driver tells British radio star Jeremy Vine to fuck off, after the bike-riding BBC presenter challenged him for blowing through a stop sign.

An Oxford, England city councilor responds to a challenge from a bicycling critic to post a photo of school bike racks on a cold wet December day by doing just that — showing the racks overflowing with bikes.

A French engineer is attempting to solve the problem of exploding lithium-ion ebike batteries by storing energy with a supercapacitor, instead.

A Kenyon newspaper looks at the nation through the eyes of a 24-year old woman who is riding solo over 8,000 miles across Africa.

A Pennsylvania man recreates a historic 900-mile trip from Nagasaki to Yokohama by Penny Farthing, 136 years after the original journey.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling News offers a comprehensive team-by-team look at next year’s WorldTour cycling teams.

 

Finally…

Seriously, why wouldn’t an elderly ghost want to watch a little kid learn how to ride a bike? Is it really a folding bike if the wheels don’t?

And why go around when you can go through?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

75-year old Camarillo man dies after falling off his ebike on Friday

It’s not getting any better out there.

But at least this time, there wasn’t a driver involved.

According to Santa Barbara TV station KEYT, an elderly man died after crashing his ebike in Camarillo last Friday.

The victim, identified only as a 75-year old Camarillo resident, was riding north on Crestview Ave, just south of Avenida de Aprisa, just before 9 am when he reportedly lost control of his bicycle and fell into the street, suffering life-threatening injuries.

He was taken to a local hospital, where he died sometime later.

The Camarillo Police Department reports he was wearing a helmet. However, they didn’t say whether he suffered a head injury, which is the only reason that would be relevant.

Anyone with information is urged to call Camarillo Police Traffic Investigator Anthony Zacarias at 805/388-5126.

This is at least the 52nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and just the second that I’m aware of in Ventura County.

He’s also the second SoCal bike rider to die in a solo fall in the last week.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and his loved ones.

Four Pepperdine students dead thanks to official inaction on deadly PCH, and more context-free San Diego ebike panic

This is who we share the road with.

Tuesday night, four young Pepperdine University students were killed by an alleged speeding driver on Southern California’s killer highway.

The four 20-year old college seniors were standing on the side of the road in an area locals call Dead Man’s Curve when the 22-year old driver slammed into three parked cars, knocking them into the women.

And making them all collateral damage on a roadway designed and build to accommodate, if not encourage, high speeds.

The driver, Fraser Michael Bohm, was booked on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence, which will likely be upgraded to four counts once he’s arraigned.

It’s only a pity that the people who have gone out of their way to keep this killer highway dangerous and deadly won’t face charges with him.

It was nearly a decade ago that I began representing the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, now BikeLA, on the PCH Task Force.

The task force was created by the state legislators who then represented the Malibu, Pacific Palisades, Santa Monica and Ventura County areas to address safety and other concerns on the highway, with input from the various stakeholders.

The LACBC took an interest because PCH is such a popular route for bicyclists of all kinds. And claimed so many as victims.

In fact, it is the single most deadly roadway for bike riders in Los Angeles and Orange counties.

The LACBC joined with other representatives to demand safety improvements to the highway, ranging from road diets and protected bike lanes, to eliminating roadside parking and reducing speed limits.

In almost every case, we were told what we were asking for was impossible. We were told the road, Malibu’s 22-mile long main street, was necessary to funnel commuters from Ventura County and the San Fernando Valley in and out of the LA area.

The overly wide traffic lanes, high speed limits that were nearly universally exceeded, slip lane right turns and roadside parking were all necessary to prevent excessive traffic congestion, or so we were told.

Never mind they also encouraged speeding drivers weaving in and out of slower traffic 22 hours a day. And put bike riders at needless risk of right hooks and dooring.

Caltrans, which has responsibility for the roadway, could have taken steps to dramatically improve safety years ago.

They didn’t.

Malibu, Los Angeles and Santa Monica could have demanded changes that would have saved lives.

They didn’t.

Sure, minor changes were made. A painted bike lane here, widening the shoulder there. But the killer highway remained, and remains, a deadly speedway for most of the day and night.

Now four young women, who did nothing to put their lives in danger, are dead — victims of an alleged speeding driver, and the officials, engineers and bureaucrats who enabled him.

The young man behind the wheel is likely to be middle-aged before he gets out of prison, unless an overly lenient judge takes pity on him.

It’s just a pity that the others who have worked so hard to keep PCH so deadly won’t be there with him.

What a fucking waste.

A 2013 publication highlights the joys of biking sans helmets on SoCal’s deadliest highway.

……..

San Diego media sources were whipped into a tizzy by “startling new statistics” from the city’s Rady Children’s Hospital, which shows increasing rates of ebike and e-scooter injuries, especially among children.

Yet once again, they fail to put any of it in context.

Injuries can be expected to rise with increasing rates of any activity. If more people started playing Frisbee golf, we’d see rising rates of arm and impact injuries as a result.

What matters is whether those injuries are rising faster than the increase in ridership, or becoming more serious than a baseline of bicycling injuries.

Unless and until we have that context, reports like this are nothing more than a concerning, but anecdotal, data point.

……..

Frequent contributor Megan Lynch forwards news that UC Davis journalism students, not the professional press, are digging into what’s been done since a student was killed by a university employee while riding her bike.

I was lucky enough to be logged on to Mastodon at the time the MuckRock bot sent this through. Otherwise I’d never have known someone was finally making a CPRA request on this. Sadly, it was not made by UC Davis student journalists, but students in a journalism class at University of Nevada, Reno.

You may remember that (19-year old sophomore) Tris Yasay was killed by a yet-unnamed UC Davis employee driving a UC Davis sanitation truck on May 25, 2022. First responders were all UC Davis employees as well (UCDPD and UCDFD). Local press didn’t ask many questions and the few that the Davis Enterprise followed up on was because I got after the reporter about it. It still wasn’t what was needed.  UC Davis was successful in burying the questions.

Months later, its PR flacks linked the “accident” and the grant they applied for re “cyclist and pedestrian safety” that simply targets pedestrians and cyclists for re-education, not its own drivers.

So far as I know, UC Davis has not done any campaign to re-train its own drivers or at least it has not publicized one. I vaguely recall reading somewhere that the claim was that the driver could not see the cyclist in the side view mirror. In which case, the position and efficacy of these mirrors needs to be examined. Because cyclists are a regular feature of the UC Davis campus and if the side view does not accurately reflect what’s going on, drivers should be trained to crane their heads around and look for themselves BEFORE turning. “Blind” spots should be minimized on the vehicle.

But haven’t read about any of that happening.

I’m interested to see what the student journalist finds and if the MuckRock interface will let everyone see it when UC Davis responds. They also requested the City of Davis Bicycle Action Plan.

……..

Our Deutschland correspondent Ralph Durham forwards a newsletter from the ADFC, aka General German Bicycle Club, on the subject of licensing bicycles, and why that’s a bad idea.

Here is a link to the ADFC newsletter on the subject of bike license plates. And their list of reasons not to have them. A huge one is the cost because of bureaucracy. Something Germans know a little about.

However, you’ll either need to read German, or dump the story into a translation service like Google Translate.

……..

I used to ride this same route almost daily to get to Lake Hollywood when I first moved to Los Angeles about a hundred years ago.

It didn’t feel safe then, and it feels a lot less safe now.

………

Bike Talk posts their latest episode, starting with questioning the effectiveness of Vision Zero on both coasts.

………

LA County wants your input on proposed bike paths in the county.

………

Local 

West Hollywood’s city council voted to end the city’s e-scooter trial phase and extend their contracts with Lime and Bird, although by a narrow 3 to 2 margin; the increasingly conservative WeHoVille site predictably did not approve.

 

State

Calbike claims a number of “big” legislative victories that survived the governor’s desk, along with concerns about bills creating an ebike safety study and a Caltrans bike czar.

The Kern County coroner’s office has finally identified the 39-year-old woman killed by a driver while riding her bike in Bakersfield last month; the CHP continues to blame her for crossing in front of the driver’s car.

The two people killed by shifting lumber form a passing Freightliner truck while riding their bikes on Napa County’s Silverado Trail were identified as a married couple from Portland, Oregon; no word on why they were riding in Napa. It’s questionable whether the driver gave them the required three-foot passing distance, which might have spared them from the impact. 

No one seems to like San Francisco’s new Valencia Street centerline protected bike lane, as advocates call it dangerous and counterintuitive, while merchants along the street say it’s killing their business.

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is looking for a new executive director once again, as current ED Jannelle Wong is stepping down after just 18 months on the job.

 

National

NPR reports on the recent study that shows regular bike riding can improve mental health for middle school students. Which is one more reason for Safe Routes to Schools

Bicycling offers a requiem and post-mortem for the popular Surly Cross Check, which has been discontinued by the bikemaker. This one doesn’t seem to be available from other sources, so you’re on your own if the magazine blocks you. 

Friends of 32-year old BMX champ Nathan “Nate” Miller want to know why the Las Vegas driver who killed him hasn’t been charged for the September crash, after security cam video surfaced showing the speeding driver jerking between lanes before crashing into Miller’s bike, then crashing into a fence and a parked vehicle.

The wife and daughter of fallen former Bell, California police chief Andreas “Andy” Probst first realized he was injured when they got an alert of a fall from his Apple Watch, then heard police sirens and helicopters just blocks from their Las Vegas home; two teens face murder charges for intentionally running down Probst in a stolen car, apparently just for the hell of it.

A 62-year old Florida woman has been identified as the hit-and-run driver captured in a viral video crashing into an 11-year-old girl riding her bike in a school parking lot, and pushing her at least 60 feet with the car; instead of helping the girl, she just got out of her car, asked if the victim was okay, and told her to just go home and take a shower.

Once again, a cop has killed someone riding a bicycle, this time in Marion County, Florida, where a 22-year old sheriff’s deputy ran down a 63-year old man early Wednesday; investigators quickly blamed the victim for riding on a dark roadway without a helmet or reflective clothing, or using lights on his bike. Because apparently, patrol cars in Florida don’t have headlights that could have illuminated someone riding a bike.

 

International

Momentum offers 13 helpful tips for a worry-free first-time bike commuting experience.

Inside EVs says the new European Declaration on Cycling offers 36 principles aimed at advancing bicycling in the European Union, laying the groundwork for future legislation to unlock the full potential of bicycles.

An Australian woman has been seriously injured riding her bike, less than a week after warning a Victoria state parliamentary inquiry into road safety about the extreme risks bicyclists face on the country’s roads.

 

Competitive Cycling

Sad news from Arizona, where longtime bike racer John Timbers, a previous winner of the Iron Horse Classic and the Manhattan Beach Grand Prix, and founder of Arizona’s Vuelta de Bisbee stage race nearly five decades ago, was killed by a hit-and-run driver while riding his bike in Tucson early Tuesday morning; he was 78.

 

Finally…

That feeling when a trio of random tweets tells a story about traffic violence and automotive hegemony. Nothing like suffering a daily aerial assault on your bike commute.

And who says you can’t do stunts on a heavy-ass bikeshare bike?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Sidewalk parking and bike helmets, the fame and infamy of ebikes, and violent robberies target bike riders

This is what I ran into while walking home with my dog yesterday. 

This driver couldn’t be bothered to park at one of the open meters around the corner, and somehow felt entitled to park on the sidewalk just to run into 7-11.

Just for a minute, I’m sure. 

But sure, tell me again about all those entitled cyclists.

………

This comes up from time to time on here.

So here’s my take on bike helmets in a nutshell, in response to a question from Eban about whether I wear one, after I questioned someone’s misuse of helmet safety stats in yesterday’s post.

I never ride without one, and recognize that it may have saved my life in a solo crash. But I also know that they are designed to protect against relatively slow speed falls like mine, not high impact collisions, and don’t protect any other body parts. Too many studies cite fatalities in relation to helmet use, without indicating whether the victims actually died of head injuries. I also know that stats on helmets tend to vary widely, are often misrepresented, and tend to cited in a way that represents the perspective of the author. My take is that you are far better off avoiding a crash in the first place than relying on your bike helmet to save you, and it should always be seen as the last line of defense when all else fails, not the first.

………

Today’s common theme is ebikes, in all their fame, glory and infamy.

Forbes calls this the year of the ebike — if you can manage to get past their paywall.

America’s only remaining Tour de France winner has introduced a lightweight, carbon fiber, drop handlebar ebike designed to be used on any type of road, while coming in at a relatively svelte 28 pounds.

I don’t even know what to make of this. Punk rocker and rapper Machine Gun Kelly got out of his chauffeur-driven Rolls Royce to confront DJ and social media personality Kerwin Frost on the side of a Sherman Oaks street, standing in front of the influencer’s ebike to prevent him from leaving the heated confrontation.

They get it. The Orange County Register says local cities are overreacting to ebikes, arguing that sensible regulation is fine, but enough with the hysteria. Amen, brother.

A 25-year old San Diego man was seriously injured when he crashed his ebike into the back of a parked pickup truck in the city’s Sorrento Valley; police blamed the victim for “riding at an unsafe speed for conditions.” Then again, it’s hard not to blame the victim when someone rides into a legally parked car.

A Santa Barbara wrench calls for parents to check and maintain their kid’s ebikes, saying the heavier, faster bikes could pose a danger otherwise.

The Urbanist offers tips to potential ebike buyers, as Seattle ebike sales are soaring and the state prepares to offer a rebate. Which will probably come long before California’s long-delayed ebike rebate program finally gets here.

Wyoming’s Bridger-Teton National Forest is asking for public input on a proposal to allow Class 1 ebikes on a measly 27.5 miles of existing trail in the Teton Pass; Class 2 and 3 ebikes would be prohibited.

Long Beach — no, the one in New Jersey — struggles to implement rules for ebike riding, because local residents complain about too many signs. No, really. 

Porsche is driving a stake through the Croatian ebike brand Greyp, in which they own a majority stake, while shifting the bikemaker’s technology to its own in-house brand.

A pair of French bikepackers were lucky to escape injury when their ebike battery exploded as it was being charged in an Aussie hostel; the blast was caught on security cam as they fled into the hallway.

………

Today’s other common theme is armed robbery.

Never mind the shooting I just hear outside my Hollywood window at 2:30 in the morning.

A Norfolk, Virginia man captured an armed robbery attempt on his rear-facing bike cam, as four men ran up from behind as he rode on a narrow bridge bikeway, pulled guns on him and sprayed him with pepper spray while demanding his bike, then ran away just as quickly; police arrested two adults and two juveniles the next day.

A pair of masked men were caught on security cam attempting to steal a man’s bike in a small English village, after using their SUV as a weapon to run the victim off the road; the bikejacking attempt ultimately failed when the homeowner came running out armed with a shovel.

………

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

Canadian Cycling Magazine shares what they say may be the scariest close-pass ever, as a speeding bus driver appears to come within a foot of a bike rider, and observes that buzzing bicyclists is one of the worst things a driver can do.

London’s Metropolitan Police tweeted out a victim-blaming call for bike riders and pedestrians to “be seen,” using an edited and discredited photo.

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

A Scottish bike rider was caught on video yelling and swearing at an elderly woman who had the audacity to ask him to dismount on a narrow pedestrian walkway, including using the C word. Seriously, don’t do that. Show a little respect for others, and for women, and for the aged. And for yourself, for that matter. 

………

Local 

Rather than following through on it’s climate and Complete Street commitments, Caltrans is doubling down on highway construction, announcing a nearly $300 million project along the 605 Freeway from Long Beach to San Gabriel, to “improve overall ride quality along the route while bolstering safety for drivers and for state highway workers.” Meanwhile, Car-Light Long Beach discusses the minuscule multi-modal component of the first segment.

Long Beach approved a $2.5 million contract extension to keep their existing 100-hub bikeshare program going for another year.

Jennifer Garner is one of us, going for an LA bike ride with her 14-year old daughter.

 

State

A man who spent three months in a coma following a DUI crash pedaled a hydro-bike nine hours from Catalina to Newport Beach to call attention to brain injuries.

A retired economics professor calls for removing San Diego’s popular Coaster train, rather than moving the tracks off a crumbling Del Mar cliff, and converting it to a bike and pedestrian trail.

 

National

Bicycling lists their Gear of the Year, with a nifty 50 products you can buy right now. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

A Streetsblog podcast considers what livable street means in the coming era of driverless cars.

A Minnesota man is attempting to raise a half million dollars to fight prostate cancer and schizophrenia by riding 11,000 miles around the US, all while battling stage 4 prostate cancer himself; so far he’s raised a little more that $100,000.

You’ve got to be kidding. Life is cheap in Michigan, where a convicted drunk driver walked with just two days behind bars — and credit for time served — for the hit-and-run crash that seriously injured a 36-year old man riding a bicycle; he was sentenced to three years probation and a lousy $1,200 restitution.

A church in West Lafayette, Indiana has made it part of their mission to loan bicycles to international students at Purdue University, and will tune and repair recipients’ bikes for free; they currently have a waiting list of over 100 people. Thanks to Melissa for the heads-up.

Louisville KY will throw in the towel on its municipal bikeshare system after six years.

Three months later, police in Niagara Falls finally charged the alleged hit-and-run driver who left an 84-year man to die alone in a ditch after rear-ending the victim’s bike.

Massachusetts passed a $1 billion tax cut retroactive to the first of this year, including expanded deductions for transit and bicycle use.

Life is cheap in Florida, where police refused to charge a van driver who killed a 14-year old boy riding his bike to school, after the driver played the universal Get Out Of Jail Free card by saying he just didn’t see the kid. Well, okay then. It’s not fair to expect motorists to see a human being directly in front of their vehicle, right?

 

International

Bike Radar offers advice on how to make your bike more comfortable, while Road.cc recommends the best and brightest rear bike lights for day and night use.

Life is cheap in British Columbia, where a red light-running driver was fined a whole $167 for the crash that left a bike rider seriously injured — and could have that reduced to $147 if it’s paid within 30 days. And that’s in Canadian dollars, which works out to the equivalent of about $107 in US dollars.

After posting helmet cam video of a typical bike ride through the city, a London bicyclist asks readers if they’d be comfortable riding there.

A British group projected a video promoting a 20 mph speed limit on the Houses of Parliament, after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak pledged to end the mythical war on motorists.

The UK’s rolling rave returns to Sheffield, with a DJ pumping out drum and bass from his bicycle-mounted sound system.

The European Commission has released a document promoting bicycling as a safe and sustainable mode of transport, while seeking to unleash the full potential of bicycles as a “sustainable, accessible, inclusive, economical and healthy” mode of transportation.

A growing number of French companies are giving employees the chance to ditch driving by providing a company bicycle.

 

Competitive Cycling

Mark Cavendish announced he’ll be returning next year in an attempt to set a new record for Tour de France stage wins; he’s currently tied with the legendary Eddy Merckx at 34.

A British man just three days shy of his 86th birthday became the oldest person ever to compete in the historic Monsal Hill Climb, and plans to do it again when he’s 100.

Another British man set a new record for riding coast-to-coast across the UK from Pembroke, Wales to Norfolk, England, covering the 350-mile course in 14 hours flat, and beating the previous record by one hour and 20 minutes. One day, I hope to take our Pembroke Welsh Corgi to her ancestral home, so she can run with herds of wild corgis on the Welsh Serengeti. And yes, I only included this item so I could get that joke in. 

Competing in a Mexican double deca triathlon that includes a 47-mile swim, 2237-mile bike ride, and 524-mile run is hard enough, without encountering a bike-riding ghost passing in the opposite direction.

 

Finally…

Sometimes, you just want a streetwear-inspired bike that screams F you to the world. We may have to deal with wild LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about getting tackled by a rogue deer while riding with your parrot.

And that feeling when you don’t realize you just won the race, so you just keep going.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

LA mired in scenic bike mediocrity, PeopleForBikes fights ebike right-to-repair, and driving SF’s new protected bike path

Apparently, we’re not that scenic, either.

Ebikes.org ranked the nation’s 100 most scenic cities to see by bicycle, by combining Instagram hashtags and bike-related Google search volume with bikeability ratings, the number of road biking trails, and average yearly sunshine.

And Los Angeles came in at a remarkably mediocre 52. Then again, even our weather barely made the top 25, as far as they’re concerned.

Not surprisingly, Seattle, San Francisco, and Miami came out on top, with North Las Vegas, and Garland and Irving, Texas all tying for the bottom.

So start tagging those Instagram posts from the City of Angels. Because it may not improve the weather, LA’s scenic beauty or make this city any more bikeable.

But at least we can boost our Insta rank.

………

Maybe PeopleForBikes isn’t completely on our side, after all.

The organization, the advocacy arm of the national trade organization representing bicycle manufacturers, is lobbying officials in several states to exempt ebikes from right-to-repair bills.

In other words, they want to keep forcing you to send your ebike back to the manufacturer — or at least your local dealer — rather than allowing you to fix it yourself.

The group says it’s a matter of safety, and recommends recycling ebike batteries instead.

Never mind that it would be a simple matter to require bike owners to recycle spent batteries, and that batteries aren’t the only thing on an ebike that might need fixing.

Maybe they should stick to ranking bikeability.

………

Evidently, the many critics of San Francisco’s new Valencia Street bike path were right.

Drivers took to the ostensibly protected centerline bike path when a driverless car unexpectedly froze in the traffic lane, forcing drivers to use the bike path to go around it.

Never mind that keeping cars out is the very definition of a protected bike lane, and they should never have been able to use it as a bypass lane.

Fortunately, no one appears to actually have been using it for its intended purpose at the time.

………

Um, no.

The Sacramento Bee misses the mark in answering a reader’s question about whether helmets are required to ride a motorcycle, e-scooter to bicycle in California.

The paper implies — whether mistakenly or through inartful editing — that bike helmets are required to ride on sidewalks, trails, parks and bike paths. And fails to mention that helmets are required for all Class 3 ebikes and mopeds.

………

This is what a catastrophic frame failure looks and sounds like during a competition, as Alex Anderson goes up a jump on a mountain bike, and lands on a pile of crumpled and broken carbon fiber.

Seriously, his painful moans were loud enough to wake the corgi from a sound sleep, and make her stare to see what the problem was.

………

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

No bias here. A 76-year old Montana columnist says young people shouldn’t ride ebikes if they can ride a regular bike, and that if he can ride his bike up the local pass, you should be able to, too.

No bias here, either. After a Bath NY man became just the latest bike rider run down by police, the local sheriff reminds bicyclists they have to use lights and reflectors after dark, rather than consider the deputy who rear-ended the victim might be at fault.

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

A Wyoming man known for giving away thousands of bicycles to children through a local bike project is facing a felony count of first-degree abuse of a minor for allegedly sexually abusing a child under the age of 13.

………

Local 

Metro is looking for input on first mile/last mile active transportation connections within a half-mile of Western and Slauson.

 

State

Oops. A Westminster man was busted for carrying a large amount of narcotics and a loaded gun while already on probation, after being stopped for a traffic violation while riding a bicycle.

Carlsbad is taking a proactive approach to teenage ebike riders, teaming with the local school district to offer an ebike safety course in exchange for a free permit park their bikes on campus.

Police in Redwood City have arrested two men for the June 1st bike shop burglary that netted several high-end bikes worth a combined fifty grand.

San Francisco Streetsblog says the question shouldn’t be why are bike riders on the Bay Bridge, but why are they banned in the first place, in the wake of last weekend’s takeover of the lower span by hundreds of mostly teen bike riders.

 

National

Consumer Reports says bicycling can be a great and safe way to exercise as you get older. And for once, the safety recommendations don’t start and end with wearing a helmet.

This is the cost of traffic violence. After news broke that an Oregon bike rider was killed by a 71-year old driver in a left-cross crash, it didn’t take long to learn the victim was the popular manager of a Mt. Hood ski area.

Ten people who were injured riding their bikes on the “missing link” gap on a Seattle bike path have filed a claim against the city, demanding that Seattle act quickly to make the trail safe for riders, as well as seeking unspecified monetary damages.

Colorado Public Radio answers a listener’s question about the proper etiquette for driving behind a bicyclist on narrow, twisting mountain roads. Short answer, be patient, follow at a safe distance, and only pass when it’s safe to do so, giving a minimum three-foot passing distance. Besides, there’s a good chance the person on the bike can navigate curves better than someone in a car, anyway. 

A Colorado woman calculates she’s saved nearly $1,900 by commuting on her ebike for the past five years, rather than driving her 2010 Toyota, putting 11,500 miles on her bike in the process.

Indianapolis has named the cop who killed a bike rider after swerving around a car while responding to a call last week. Contrast that with the LAPD and LA County Sheriff’s Department, who go out of their way to keep officers from being named. 

An Ohio boxer is riding his bike across the state to raise funds to keep his gym open and fund scholarships for low-income participants, in memory of his nephew killed by gun violence. Which is a very passive way of saying someone was shot to death. 

A New York website tracks the cost of traffic violence in the city, both in terms of lives and financial costs.

 

International

Bike Radar considers how gravel biking is changing the way we think about road bike design as road bikes become more capable of riding more varied terrain.

A Bristol, England advocacy group calls for more protected and segregated bike paths, after 81% of local bike rider complain of aggressive motorists.

An international team of eight bicyclists is riding 2,175 miles from the British Museum to Greece’s Acropolis Museum to demand the return of the Parthenon sculptures, known in the UK as the Elgin Marbles.

A New Zealand woman says her husband was a careful, experienced cyclist who felt invisible on the road following a number of near misses, until one truck driver tragically didn’t miss.

 

Competitive Cycling

Apparently, not everyone objects to the “dizzying, dangerous and designed by a drunk person” world’s road course, as bronze medalist Tadej Pogačar said he enjoyed the fast and technical Glasgow circuit, adding he “really likes city street racing.”

Not only did Mathieu Van der Poel have to overcome a late crash on his way claiming the world road cycling title, he also had to knock on a stranger’s door to poop.

Eleventh place finisher Neilson Powless says he could have had a top five finish in the road race, if not for a crash that separated the peloton and created a gap the American couldn’t close.

The head of the pro cyclists’ union issued a scathing condemnation of the environmental protesters who halted the worlds road race for an hour, calling it the opposite of helping the environment.

Team USA star Jennifer Valente became America’s most decorated track cyclist with a third place finish in Sunday’s elimination race, adding to the 15 medals she won prior to this year’s world’s.

The BBC looks back at the maverick life and mysterious death of the late, great Marco Pantini; the Italian cycling star’s death was officially blamed on acute cocaine poisoning, though questions remain over whether the mafia somehow helped him ingest it.

Cycling Weekly profiles Spain’s remarkable para-athlete Ricardo Ten, as the one-limbed swimmer aims for his seventh Paralympics, this time as a cyclist — despite having no hands and just one leg.

 

Finally…

When you already have nine outstanding warrants, maybe riding a bicycle out in the open isn’t the best choice. Not only are bike paths not safe from DUI drivers, now they’re not even waiting until they’re finished.

And probably not the best idea to try to ride your bike atop a wrought iron fence.

At least not if you ever want to have children.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Cuw_-IuRZ9s/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=embed_video_watch_again

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

NY Times misses the mark on ebike critique, witness refuses to report hit-and-run driver, and sharrows ain’t bike lanes

Before we start, I’ve received a secondhand report that someone riding a bicycle may have been killed in Mentone on Saturday.

It’s possible the report could have been referring to a fatal crash in nearby Highland on Friday, which the police were quick to blame on the bike-riding victim crossing the street outside of a crosswalk.

Even though there is no requirement or expectation that bike riders use one, and many police agencies mistakenly interpret state law as banning bikes from crosswalks.

But whether it refers to the same crash, or a second crash a dozen or so mile way, it’s yet another tragic reminder to always ride defensively, and stay safe out there.

Because you can watch out for dangerous drivers, but there’s no guarantee they’re watching for you.

Thanks to Jeffrey Rusk for the heads-up.

………

No bias here.

The New York Times, which should really know better, published an exceptionally one-sided screed on the dangers of ebikes for teenaged users.

But somehow forgot to mention that the real danger didn’t come from the bikes the victim’s were riding, but from the drivers and motor vehicles that killed and maimed them.

The e-bike industry is booming, but the summer of 2023 has brought sharp questions about how safe e-bikes are, especially for teenagers. Many e-bikes can exceed the 20-mile-per-hour speed limit that is legal for teenagers in most states; some can exceed 55 miles per hour. But even when ridden at legal speeds, there are risks, especially for young, inexperienced riders merging into complex traffic with fast-moving cars and sometimes distracted drivers.

“The speed they are going is too fast for sidewalks, but it’s too slow to be in traffic,” said Jeremy Collis, a sergeant at the North Coastal Station of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Office, which is investigating Brodee’s accident. The investigation is ongoing pending a medical examiner’s finding.

The Brodee in that reference was 15-year old Brodee Braxton Champlain-Kingman, who was killed when he was rear-ended by a driver while changing lanes on his ebike.

Something that could have just as easily happened if he’d been riding a regular bike, and may have had nothing to do with the ebike he was riding. And never mind that he’d still be here if not for the driver who ran him down, regardless of his judgment, or the lack thereof, in changing lanes.

Even though it resulted in nearly universal knee-jerk condemnation of teenagers on ebikes, if not ebikes in general — including a proposed law to ban younger ebike riders and possibly require a license to ride one, regardless of age.

The Times follows it up with a second article discussing just what an ebike is, while considering how safe they are.

Or in their eyes, aren’t.

Here’s how Electrek responded to the stories.

The article even explicitly lists the biggest danger that played a role in that crash, explaining that the boy’s bike “had a top speed of 20 miles per hour, but his route took him on a busy road with a 55-mile-per-hour limit.” And yet the article seems to imply that the e-bike’s presence was the compounding issue, instead of reading into the author’s very own sentence to realize that the true problem was that the road didn’t have anywhere safe for cyclists to ride. There was no protected bike lane.

By all accounts, the e-bike rider was correctly and legally using the roadway in the only way he could. In fact, according to eye-witnesses of the car crash that killed the e-bike rider, he “did everything right,” including signaling his turn…

As Visiting Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School David Zipper pointed out, every single e-bike crash listed in the article was a collision between a car and e-bike. None were simply e-bike crashes without the added of a car. “All could’ve been avoided if e-bike riders were protected from cars (or if there were no cars)”, Zipper explained on Twitter.“Fight the real enemy.”

The Electrek article goes on to add this about the second Times story.

Amazingly, the article uses a statistic pointing out how dangerous cars are, but flips it around to imply that because studies have proven that faster moving cars are dangerous, that means e-bikes shouldn’t travel too fast, presumably to also reduce the danger of these small and lightweight machines.

It’s right there. The answer is literally in the body of the NYT article. Unprotected road users (pedestrians and cyclists) are much more likely to be severely injured by cars as the car speed increases. And yet this statistic is used to imply that e-bikes shouldn’t be used at speeds of over 20 mph.

Thanks to Yves Dawtur for the heads-up. 

………

Marcello Calicchio forwards news of a (insert negative descriptor here) Nextdoor user who claims to have witnessed a hit-and-run by an aged driver, but refuses to contact the police, somehow thinking a Nextdoor post is good enough.

Um, sure.

And somehow thinks she’s a victim, because commenters piled on telling her to fulfill her legal and moral duty to report what she saw to the police.

So if you were the victim of a hit-and-run on San Diego’s Highway 76 on Saturday, you know who to contact.

Or better yet, who to have your lawyer contact.

………

Speaking of those new bike lanes/sharrows on Doheny in Beverly Hills, as we were last week —

………

Make it safe and convenient to ride a bike, and people will.

In droves.

………

More than once I’ve found myself singing “The harder they come, the harder they fall,” as I scraped myself off the pavement.

Those times I’ve still been able to sing, that is.

………

That feeling when a mountain biking god, and one of your lifelong biking heroes, is having dinner with his family just walking distance from your Hollywood apartment.

And yes, I would have dropped everything if he’d said to c’mon over.

………

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

No bias here, either. A Minneapolis cop used his loud speaker to order a group of bicyclists to ride in single file — in a public park.

Once again, someone has tried to sabotage a bikeway, this time dumping screws and nails on a controversial new bike lane in Victoria, British Columbia. This should be treated as terrorism, since it’s a deliberate attempt to kill or injure innocent people for political ends. But won’t be. 

………

Local 

LADOT wants your opinion on bikeshare, and is willing to give you a shot at a $100 gift card to get it. Thanks to Steven Hallett for the tip.

 

State

A Fullerton writer asks if the city’s bike plan is in danger of being nibbled to death. Although that may be better than simply ignoring it, like a certain megalopolis to the the north.

The Newport Beach Police Department is using mounted cops to crack down on illegal ebikes.

Some residents of San Diego’s Serra Mesa neighborhood are upset about new lane reductions and buffered bike lanes, accusing them of causing traffic congestion and frustrated drivers, even as the traffic in the background continues to move smoothly.

Sad news from the Bay Area, where a 51-year old Santa Rosa man was killed when a pickup driver crashed into his bicycle leaving a parking lot in Rohnert Park.

 

National

Bicycling reports that a new survey shows the Congressional E-BIKE Act, which would cover 30 percent of the cost of a new ebike, is supported by 70% of Americans living in major cities, and nearly half would be extremely likely to buy one if the bill passes. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Even bikes that don’t move can cause dangerous falls, as Peloton recalls more than two million of their popular exercise bikes.

Auto Evolution says the new European-style ebike from America’s last remaining Tour de France winner fits perfectly with the Barbenheimer zeitgeist.

Life is cheap in Arizona, where the “driver” who was behind the wheel watching videos on her phone when a self-driving Uber test car ran down Elaine Herzberg as she crossed a Tempe road with her bike walked without a day behind bars, after copping a plea to just three lousy years of supervised probation. Which is three years more than Uber got, while Herzberg got the death penalty just for crossing the damn street.

Tragic news from Colorado, where a motorcyclist was killed, and a couple riding a tandem bike were seriously injured — the man severely — when the motorcyclist crossed the centerline in a winding canyon, and slammed into their bike before sliding off the roadway; a Boulder paper suggests the motorcyclist was attempting to flee the scene when he crashed a second time.

The Associated Press says the massive RAGBRAI bike ride across Iowa puts small town America into focus.

An op-ed from the advocacy director of a Chicago active transportation group says the city may be near the bottom of PeopleForBikes ratings for bikeability, but public support could help make it the nation’s best city for bicycling. Then again, we could say the same about Los Angeles. 

Gothamist says last week’s bloody scooter crash on the Manhattan Bridge bike path has left four people injured and the cycling community shaken, as riders of traditional bicycles compete for space with motor-scooter riders illegally using it.

A Virginia man’s dream European cycling vacation was saved when his stolen bike was recovered by using an AirTag, as well as bugging the hell out of the airline. Thanks to David Drexler for the link.

 

International

Momentum offers a beginner’s guide to learning to ride a bicycle later in life.

A 48-year old Welsh driver has been charged in the death of triathlete Rebecca Comins as she was taking part in a bicycle time trial last year.

London’s Daily Mail describes how a deaf and endearingly daft bike-riding cat became an instant Instagram star.

A retired French school teacher has created his own job, riding his recumbent bike across the country personally delivering handwritten letters “to friends of friends and soon-to-be new ones.”

NPR reports that Berlin bike riders are standing up to the city’s new conservative mayor, forcing him to backpedal on a campaign pledge to standup for the city’s poor, downtrodden drivers.

Life is cheap in India, where an Army doctor got a single year behind bars, seven years after the speeding crash that killed the father of a young child while he was riding his bike.

A nine-year old Guyana junior cycling “prodigy” made waves in her bike racing debut, following in the footsteps of her late father, three years after the former national cycling team member was killed by a drunk driver on a training ride.

This is who we share the road with. After a Singaporean school bus full of kids nearly ran over a bicyclist before smashing into three cars, the bike rider realized there was no one driving the bus, because the driver had apparently fallen out.

 

Competitive Cycling

Gut-wrenching news from Boulder, Colorado, where 17-year old rising cyclist Magnus White, a member of the US Junior Men’s National Team and the 2021 Junior 17-18 Cyclocross National Champ, was killed when he was struck by a driver while training for the world junior championships in Scotland next week; a crowdfunding campaign in his memory has raised nearly $60,000 of the $70,000 goal. We’ve got to stop murdering our children. Let alone so many of our best and brightest.

Dutch cyclist Demi Vollering won the second edition of the revived women’s Tour de France on Sunday, after demolishing her competitors on Saturday’s Tourmalet climb.

Rising American cyclist Veronica Ewers was sent home with a broken collarbone after crashing hard and flying into a ditch on Friday’s stage of the Tour.

The Los Angeles-based Bahati foundation is sponsoring the Ghana Cycling Federation to help groom young cyclists to compete in major international events.

 

Finally…

Forget carb loading and chug a bicarb, instead. Bicycles get blamed for crashes, even when no one is riding them.

And who needs a moving van when you’ve got a bicycle?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Encinitas declares bicycling emergency, support for Pacific Beach Slow Street, and car death cult piece misses mark

About damn time.

Encinitas has joined its North San Diego County neighbor Carlsbad in declaring a state of emergency for “bicycle, e-bicycle and motorized mobility device safety” in the wake of the death of 15-year old Brodee Champlain-Kingman

Champlain-Kingman’s family announced his death on Saturday, after he was struck by the driver of a work truck on Thursday.

However, the planned state of emergency action items reported by San Diego’s NBC-7 seem a little lacking.

The local emergency allows the city quicker access to resources necessary for education and enforcement, if needed. Some actions that the city council hopes to accomplish include the rental of 10 messages boards that will be placed in high-visibility areas reminding both riders and drivers to share the road, 300 yard signs urging safety, additional work with schools to educate students on-campus and a bike safety video made in unison with the San Diego Sheriff’s Department that can be played at assemblies and meetings.

The declaration places the most of the onus for safety on the potential victims riding on two wheels, rather than the people in the big, dangerous machines.

Because yard signs and message boards aren’t likely to slow drivers down, and won’t do a damn thing for the distracted drivers who don’t even see them.

Yes, it’s a start.

But if Encinitas really wants to save lives, they’ll need to lower speed limits and redesign roads to prevent speeding, as well as crack down on any form of distraction behind the wheel.

And it wouldn’t hurt to work with other North County cities to improve safety along the entire coast highway corridor.

Meanwhile, hundreds of people turned out for a candlelight vigil to honor Champlain-Kingman.

Thanks to Phillip Young and Marcello Calicchio for the heads-up.

………

These days, every street project that might possibly inconvenience someone is contentious.

Usually, needlessly so.

That’s certainly the case with the Slow Street project on Diamond Street in San Diego’s Pacific Beach neighborhood, where all of four — yes, four — people rose up at a recent Town Council meeting to complain about it.

Yet the local paper still headlined it as “Pacific Beach residents express displeasure over city’s traffic plans for Diamond Street.”

Did I mention that it was just four people who complained?

Fortunately, the local representative for the City Council Mobility Board, who was also the researcher who evaluated the project, wrote to the San Diego Union-Tribune to support the project.

…The benefits are staggering. The project led to an increase in walking and biking mode share, and children and older adults using the street. Driving mode share decreased by nearly 60 percent with a smaller impact on traffic on adjacent streets.

People reported a greater sense of community and well-being. Most were using the street for transportation and half planned to visit a business during their trip. Most importantly, there was overwhelming support for making the project permanent.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but “overwhelming support” is probably more than four.

A lot more.

She goes on to say that making Diamond a permanent slow street shouldn’t even be up for debate, since it gets San Diego that much closer to meeting its Climate Action Plan and Vision Zero goals.

Let’s hope the city council is listening.

………

Progressive magazine The American Prospect missed the mark.

A writer for the magazine makes the case against the “death cult of the American car,” noting the divergence between dropping traffic death rates in Europe, and rising rates in the US.

But he goes off track at the end in blaming neoliberalism of the 1980s and ’90s for the American failure, which he argues resulted in less government oversight, drawing a straight line leading to today’s massively oversized vehicles, overly wide roads and high traffic death rates.

The problem with that is traffic deaths prior to the ’80s were significantly higher than even the nearly 43,000 deaths in both 2021 and 2022, while today’s per capita deaths are just a fraction of the 1960s and 1970s.

There’s no arguing that traffic deaths are too high, and getting higher, and that poor road design and the ever-increasing size of motor vehicles are at least partly to blame, along with a dramatic increase in distracted driving.

But fondly remembering the good old days when traffic death rates were even worse doesn’t help.

………

I have somehow miraculously recovered the ability to embed tweets.

Which comes in handy, with this must-read thread from People Powered Media regarding the poor conditions on the new bus and bike upgrades on Venice Blvd.

And yes, I’m including the links above in case the tweets below somehow disappear.

………

I’m not sure if we shared this short film from Nimesh in Los Angeles when it came out last December.

So we’ll correct that possible oversight today.

In it, he argues that LA’s flat terrain and year-round Mediterranean climate should make it the bicycle capital of the world. But it isn’t, because Los Angeles makes biking in paradise a nightmare.

Thanks to Steven Hallett for the heads-up.

………

Robert Leone forwards news that the Marines will apparently be blowing things up on Camp Pendleton again.

Which means that the popular bike path through the base will be closed from July 31st to August 4th.

So if you’re planning to ride south from Orange County, or north from San Diego County, you’ll have to use the shoulder of the freeway from the Las Pulgas Gate north to the tunnel under I-5.

………

Some things don’t need translating.

Ralph Durham forwards a video for the proposed Complete Streets transformation of a Munich, Germany arterial.

Like he says, Google Translate is your friend. But I don’t make friends easily, so I’ll let him give you the shorthand.

I got a newsletter from the German Cycling Federation ADFC, and in this issue it shows a proposal to do a street makeover for a major arterial into the center of town. Next step is through the city council.

The numbers for users from 2011 to 2022 are amazing. The north end of the project runs into a nasty intersection that has been undergoing total renovation for the last 4 years. The existing situation shows 9,300 users on bikes daily. There are a couple of pictures of the existing bike lane. Unreal usage, but it is a main route direct into the city center.

It would be great if it gets through the city council.

………

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

This is who we share the world with. Even the bike-riding mayor of Emeryville has to deal with wannabe killer drivers. Unfortunately, though, this doesn’t cross the legal threshold for a threat, since it lacks a statement of intent — “I would” vs “I will.”

https://twitter.com/JohnBauters/status/1674278161012645888

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

Police in Hermosa Beach are looking for a young man who rode off on a gas-powered beach cruiser after allegedly throwing fireworks into a crowd of people.

………

Local 

This is who we share the road with. The LAPD is looking for a serial hit-and-run driver in a $90,000 electric Porsche Taycan who smashed into three cars in three separate crashes while driving on Main Street in DTLA at 3 am, before disappearing into the night.

West Hollywood will keep e-scooters on the streets for now, but calls on city officials to renegotiate provider contracts while imposing a 10 mph speed limit in the city.

 

State

After a Garden Grove councilmember said he doubts there’s much demand for bike lanes in the city, a bike-riding writer responds by suggesting he try riding some of the really scary ones that separate bike riders from speeding drivers with just a thin strip of paint.

Carpenteria’s new Santa Claus Lane Bikeway will have a temporary opening this weekend in time for the 4th of July holiday; it will close again this fall for final installation of a permanent barrier rail.

Santa Barbara will keep a nine-block stretch of State Street closed to cars for at least the next three and a half years, while continuing to allow bicycles.

Streetsblog’s Roger Ruddick says don’t ride on San Francisco’s new Valencia Street protected bike lane because it’s unsafe.

 

National

US Magazine rounds up the summer’s best deals on ebikes. Although with emphasis on deals rather than the actual quality of the ebikes.

Bike Portland’s Jonathan Maus says we’re having the wrong conversation about ebikes, as people predictably point fingers at kids on bikes while calling for mandatory licensing after the death of a teenage bike rider.

A 45-year old Las Vegas man died nearly a month after he was struck by a speeding motorcyclist while riding his bicycle.

Any city can do Bike to Work Day. But my bike-friendly Colorado hometown hosts an annual Bike Prom.

Life is cheap in North Dakota, where an 88-year old driver faces a single misdemeanor hit-and-run charge for running down a pair of bike riders participating in an annual fundraising ride from Texas to Alaska, then fleeing the scene. Once again raising the question of how old is too old to drive. And suggesting that he may be on the wrong side of that line. 

The family of a 14-year-old boy pinned to the ground by an off-duty Chicago cop who mistakenly accused him of stealing a bike is suing the city and the police officer; Michael A. Vitellaro was acquitted of official misconduct and aggravated battery in the incident earlier this month.

New Orleans bicyclists demand change as deaths spike in the city with the highest per capita rate of bicycling deaths in the US.

Vermont relaunched what was the nation’s first statewide bike rebate program, but with just $150,000 available for ebike vouchers.

Over 1,200 people applied for ebike vouchers in just the first few hours of Connecticut’s ebike rebate program. Which offers a warning for California, which has only $7.5 million left for rebate vouchers when its program finally launches

An 84-year old Pennsylvania man faces charges for the hit-and-run death of a 64-year old bike rider, after his own dashcam turned on him. Again raising the question of how old is too old to drive. And once agains suggesting he may be on the wrong side of it. 

 

International

Momentum Magazine offers advice on how to stay cool and fresh while bike commuting in summer weather.

Off.Road.cc suggest eight tips to help motivate you to get back on your bike.

Yanko Design recommends the top ten accessories to upgrade your bike this summer, including zip-on knobby tire treads, and a face air filter that will make you look like Batman supervillain Bane.

Hundreds of Calgary residents called for keeping a popup cycle track after the city threatened to tear it out.

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list, as Cycling Weekly rides the 100-mile off-road Trans Cambrian Way through the least populated district of Wales.

A Scottish bike messenger founded Gay’s Okay six years ago to make “simply adorable apparel” while building more inclusive spaces for LGBTQ+ bike riders.

An Indian man has traveled through 180 countries on a globe-trotting, 120,000-mile bike ride to call attention to HIV/Aids, with just 11 more countries to go.

The hit-and-run epidemic has spread to Thailand, after a 47-year old man was found lying dead on the side of the road near his mangled bicycle, shortly after separating from his riding companion.

 

Competitive Cycling

Three-time world champ Peter Sagan escaped a DUI charge with a three-month suspended sentence, after he was stopped in Monaco last month riding a scooter while under the influence; the sentence will allow him to compete in what will be his final Tour de France.

British cyclist Tom Pidcock says he loves descending, but is having second thoughts after he was hit hard by the death of Swiss cyclist Gino Mäder during a steep descent on the Tour de Suisse.

We Love Cycling predicts Jonas Vingegaard will win the Tour de France – unless Tadej Pogačar does.

American cyclist Kristen Faulkner’s hopes of returning to this year’s women’s Tour de France and the Giro Donne are in jeopardy, after she suffered a “small” knee fracture when she was struck by a driver while training in California. Read the first link on AOL if Bicycling blocks you. 

 

Finally…

At last, mountain bike shorts for expectant mothers. Forget trendy dance moves, now you can watch Le Tour on Le TikTok.

And answering the burning question of whether accused killer Kaitlin Armstrong is related to Lance.

Um, no.

………

Eid Mubarak to all those celebrating today. 

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin.