Tag Archive for Eric Garcetti

Roadkill Gil supports bikes off the road, Metro teaches group rides, and always pay cash before you kill someone

One quick note before we get started. 

I’m scheduled to have arm and hand surgery at the end of the month. 

As you may recall, I had surgery on the right side last year, and was down for about 10 days before I was able to get back to work, however, that was a more extensive surgery than we’re expecting this time. 

So I’m not sure how long I’ll be out; hopefully, it will only be a few days. 

But if you’ve been thinking about writing a guest post, this would be a great time to send something to me. 

Standard rules apply. Write as much or as little as you want, about anything you want, as long as it’s about bicycling. Feel free to include photos (just send them separately from the text, please).

The only restrictions are to avoid insults and personal attacks, or being needlessly offensive. But I’m pretty damn hard to offend, so that should give you a lot of leeway.

No, this is not an invitation to SEO marketers, so no extraneous links unrelated to the topic at hand. 

And I’ll be the judge of what’s related. 

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More proof Roadkill Gil supports bike infrastructure, as long as it doesn’t offend NIMBYs or inconvenience motorists just a tad.

LA’s future ambassador to India seems pretty darn pleased, too, apparently taking pride in the new bike/ped bridge.

Even though his Vision Zero program has failed, and his Green New Deal is already gathering dust.

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Metro wants to teach you how to survive group rides.

https://twitter.com/MaverickMPA/status/1504279453605646338

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If you’re going to murder a couple riding their bikes, remember to pay cash — and try not to be too memorable.

The man who allegedly stabbed a Daytona, Florida couple to death as they rode their bikes back home was caught when a waitress recognized his photo, and police tracked him down from the credit card he used.

Thirty-two-year old accused killer Jean Macean has been extradited from Orlando, where he was arrested.

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This is the kind of note you write when Costco places a bench blocking the bike racks.

If you’re more polite than I am, that is.

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

It’s bad enough when a driver passes too close and ignores the painted bike lane, but even worse when it’s a cop.

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Local

The Sheriff’s Department has declared zero tolerance for speeding and crosswalk violations on PCH in Malibu in the wake of several recent pedestrian deaths. Good luck with that. If they really want to slow drivers on LA killer highway, they need to remake PCH so the Malibu’s Main Street isn’t just a speedway for pass-through drivers.

Rancho Palos Verdes will lift a 28-year ban on bicycles and skating at three local parks, in a six-month trial starting at some yet-to-be-determined date; residents have complained that they don’t have safe place to teach their kids how to ride a bike.

 

State 

San Jose announces a $6 million plan to reduce last year’s near-record number of traffic deaths, which continue to rise even though it was one of the first US cities to adopt Vision Zero. Once again demonstrating that Vision Zero doesn’t work if you don’t actually do something.

San Francisco moved a step closer to permanently banning cars from JFK Drive in Golden Gate Park. Parks are for people, not cars.

Davis is working to reduce traffic congestion on the city’s Mace Boulevard, including installing a new protected intersection.

 

National

As Colorado expands its power transmission network with hundreds of miles of new power lines, the state’s bike advocates see a unique opportunity to build bike paths along the new power line routes.

Texas Monthly remembers the state’s own Mr. Rogers, who fixed bikes for all the neighborhood kids until his death at 93 years old in 2004, and says some of those bikes are still being ridden today.

A Michigan man faces a minimum of 25 year behind bars as a habitual offender after following a man on a bicycle in his car, then intentionally jumping a curb and swerving into him to steal his wallet.

Research shows more Tennessee drivers are obeying the state’s three-foot passing law, and passing bike riders at a safe distance.

Tampa, Florida is the latest city to adopt Vision Zero, in an effort to confront the city’s average of 44 traffic deaths each year.

It’s not just a SoCal problem. A Florida family wants answers after a 50-year old man was killed riding his bike home from work; his brother found his body after retracing his route a full two days after the crash that killed him.

 

International

Garmin has patented a new rear-view bike cam radar system, which automatically begins recording when it senses danger from behind.

Ouch. Someone broke into a shed on a Scottish property, and made off with five mountain bikes worth nearly $33,000.

After an English woman was confronted by a gang of young men while riding her bike home, she didn’t realize how close she came to being robbed — or worse — until she later watched an attacker lunge at her on her rear-facing bike cam.

Former Australian Olympic track cyclist Dean Woods brought mourners to tears by delivering his own pre-recorded eulogy at his funeral, after dying of lung cancer at 55.

 

Competitive Cycling

Mark Cavendish overcame a lingering cold to continue his winning ways from last year with a victory in the one-day Milano-Torino race.

Tragic news, as 28-year old Belgian cyclist Cedric Baekeland died of a heart attack while training in Spain.

 

Finally…

That feeling when Chick-fil-A becomes a traffic hazard. And when your pedal is no longer on speaking terms with the rest of your bike.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

18 Los Angeles bike riders killed in 2021 Vision Zero fail, speed cams improve safety, and Sidney Poitier was one of us

It’s worse than we thought.

A lot worse.

Tracking bicycling deaths in Los Angeles last year, it became clear that what I was seeing was clearly a major undercount.

Because the numbers I was seeing were too good to be true, as if LA’s Vision Zero has suddenly started showing results, despite years of just nibbling at the edges of traffic safety.

It’s a problem that has developed over the past few years, as local newspapers and TV stations stopped reporting many bike crashes after the pandemic forced major cutbacks in the newsrooms.

At the same time, the LAPD has taken to telling the public about bike and pedestrian deaths only when there’s a crime involved — and even then too often waiting weeks, if not months, to issue a press release in some parts of the city, particularly in the case of hit-and-runs.

And LADOT has backtracked from their promises to track bike and pedestrian deaths under the Vision Zero program, which has receded to where it seems more like an inconvenience than a priority for the city’s transportation agency.

As a result, I counted just eight people killed riding bicycles in the city last year, a fraction of the 15 to 20 or more deaths that would have been expected in pre-pandemic days.

Sadly, I was right.

According to the Los Angeles Times, that was less than half of the actual total of 18 people killed riding their bikes in the City of Angels in 2021 — a 20% increase over the 15 people killed on bikes in the first year of the pandemic.

The paper points out the ongoing failure of Mayor Eric Garcetti’s underfunded Vision Zero pledge to cut traffic deaths by 20% by 2017 — a target the city didn’t come close to meeting. And the virtual impossibility meeting his commitment to ending traffic deaths in the city entirely by 2025.

According to Los Angeles Police Department data through Dec. 25, 289 people were killed in traffic collisions last year, 21% more than the same period in 2020 and 19% over the same period in 2019. A total of 1,465 people were severely injured, a 30% increase over the same period in 2020. The LAPD defines severely injured as needing to be transported from the collision.

The city’s streets are increasingly dangerous for pedestrians in particular, with 486 being severely injured by motorists — a 35% increase over 2020. Pedestrian deaths rose 6% to 128.

The numbers frustrate transportation advocates, who’ve long argued that Vision Zero — a program to end traffic deaths unveiled in 2015 by Garcetti — is underfunded and given a low priority by the mayor and City Hall leaders.

Then again, that’s what can be expected when our elected leaders quake in fear of getting recalled by angry drivers, and lack the courage to make the hard choices and changes necessary to save lives.

But Garcetti isn’t one to take such criticism lying down.

Garcetti cited the distraction of cellphones as a cause of collisions and said the city has added bike lanes during the pandemic, studied the city’s most dangerous intersections to come up with solutions, and supported a new state law designed to help cities have more control over speed limits.

“But it shows how tough it is,” Garcetti said Thursday.

He pushed back against criticism that he doesn’t mention Vision Zero as frequently as he touts other initiatives. “I speak out all the time,” Garcetti said. “I do on panels, I go out there, internationally, to kind of be part of this movement to make sure that we have more walkable, livable cities.”

So it’s nice to see Garcetti has done what he seems to do best.

Talk and attend conferences.

To be honest, I’ve wracked my brain in recent months, but can’t recall any elected official I’ve voted for and actively supported who has been a greater disappointment than Eric Garcetti. 

He started out great in his first term, before apparently setting his sights on higher office — including the presidency — and appearing to lose interest in the daily work of being the mayor of Los Angeles.

But I can tell you this.

I will not vote for anyone for mayor this year who does not fully commit to making Vision Zero a top priority, and funding it at levels necessary to result in real change. And commit to making the difficult choices and changes we need on our streets to actually reduce deaths and make our streets survivable.

And I won’t support anyone for city council who doesn’t, either.

It’s clear that homelessness will be the primary issue in this year’s campaign. We need to fight to raise traffic safety to a top priority, as well.

Because our lives literally depend on it.

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A new Chicago study shows speed cams really do work. And they really do save lives.

A review of the city’s 162 automated speed cams, which state law allows to be installed only within one-eighth of a mile of a park or school, showed that serious crashes went up in those areas.

But not as much as they did in the city as a whole.

According to Chicago Streetsblog,

  • Fatal or serious injury crashes increased only 2 percent near speed cameras between 2012-13 and 2018-19, as compared to a 21 percent increase citywide. This is similar to the 1 percent and 19 percent findings of last year’s study, which compared 2012-13 with 2017-18.
  • Between 2012-13 and 2018-19, overall crash totals increased 1 percent in the cam locations, compared to a 25 percent increase in all crashes citywide. The figures from last year’s study were 4 percent and 26 percent.
  • Speed-related crashes increased 18 near speed cams between 2012-13 and 2018-19, compared to a 64 percent spike city-wide. Those are smaller increases than were seen in last year’s study: 25 percent and 75 percent.

Two bills under consideration in the state legislature during the past session would have established pilot programs for speed cams here in California.

But both died on the vine, apparently because they would have inconvenienced speeding drivers, which tend to make them mad.

Fortunately, Calbike and SAFE — aka Streets Are For Everyone — say they’ll make getting a bill through the legislature one of their top priorities.

So there may be hope yet.

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Los Angeles Bureau of Streets Services Assistant Director & Chief Sustainability Officer Greg Spotts is one of us.

Which should inspire confidence that he’ll get the job done right.

https://twitter.com/Spottnik/status/1479884374053056515

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Now if all cars were just made like this.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the heads-up. 

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The immortal Sidney Poitier was one of us. So was his friend and fellow 1940s alum of Harlem’s American Negro Theatre.

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I want to be like him when I grow 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. Instead of complaining about the one rude bike rider they encountered, a New Jersey father addresses his complaints to “all the arrogant jerks who ride on New Jersey trails and roadways.” On the other hand, if you’re not an arrogant jerk, his message apparently doesn’t apply to you.

No bias here, either. Two cops were disciplined after Irish officials allowed a dangerous driver to remain on the streets until he killed a man riding a bike, despite 42 — yes, 42 — previous convictions, and being out on bail from three separate courts. But the police commissioner quashed their fines and sanctions.

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

A Montreal bike rider responds to being told to stay in the bike lane by smashing his bike against the driver’s car. Which probably hurt his bike more than it does the car. Seriously, violence is never the answer, as tempting as it is sometimes.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CYcErfYoi8V/?utm_source=ig_embed&ig_rid=310f8a6c-bbd3-4df9-8baa-2b82c601f84b

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Local

Metro Bike is offering a one-month bikeshare pass for just $1.

The director of the LA chapter of the Sierra Club complains that there are no programs in place to encourage customers to ride their bikes to local businesses.

 

State

A California inventor is working on a bike lane sweeper you can pull behind your bike.

Encinitas residents turned out for the city’s Cyclovia open streets event on Sunday, which shut down four letters worth of the Coast Highway to cars, and opened them to people for four hours from D Street to J Street.

Police in Temecula are looking for a pair of burglars who broke into a local bike shop and stole a pair of high-end mountain bikes.

Riverside’s SMART Tire Company has released the second-generation of their airless metal tire prototype, developed in conjunction with NASA in an effort to reduce weight — and the $2,000 price tag — before it goes to market later this year. Although the investors on Shark Tank didn’t approve.

San Luis Obispo kicked a homeless encampment off a local bike path before closing it for the next eight weeks to make improvements along the route.

A San Francisco writer says he won’t be renewing his membership in the de Young Museum and Legion of Honor, thanks to their demands to return “car-free JFK Drive…to a dangerous highway used mostly by shortcut-takers zipping between destinations outside the park.”

 

National

They get it. Wired says if the US is serious about climate change — which remains to be seen — our leaders need to start treating bicycles like replacements for cars, and not toys.

Mashable considers all the ebikes and scooters presented at last week’s CES in Las Vegas — including one with treads and no pedals to get through the snow.

A series of reports about the “the uneasy coexistence of grizzly bears and humans” recounts the horrific tale of a Montana mountain biker who rounded a blind curve and ran directly into a massive grizzly, who did not take to it kindly.

Once again, an ebike battery spontaneously combusted, sparking a four alarm fire in a Bronx apartment building early Saturday. Thankfully, there were no serious injuries, unlike Sunday’s apartment fire sparked by a space heater that killed at least 19 people.

Nearly 40 injured vets took part in the Wounded Warrior Project’s annual ride through the Florida Keys.

 

International

He gets it, too. A British Columbia columnist says yes, he always wears a bike helmet, but bike lanes will do a lot more to improve safety.

A British automotive website looks forward to the upcoming ebikes that are revving their engines.

UK residents laugh at the idea that people could carry their trash to drop-off sites on their bicycles during a garbage strike. Apparently, no one has ever told them about cargo bikes. Or racks. Or baskets. 

National Geographic examines what makes the Isle of Man one of Great Britain’s best places to ride a bike.

Milan is getting serious about bicycling, unveiling a $272 million plan to build an entire 466-mile network of concentric and radial bike paths connecting 80% of the city.

NPR visits Iraq, where women riding bicycles are often seen as promiscuous, though the women see themselves as activists.

A man from Kazakhstan plans to ride 500 miles from Busan to Seoul, South Korea to mark the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

 

Competitive Cycling

Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome is targeting a record-tying number five this year, insisting that he’s fully recovered from a near fatal crash two years ago. Even though He Who Must Not Be Named won seven, before he didn’t.

Cycling Weekly considers who has this year’s best looking pro cycling kit.

 

Finally…

Anyone can hold a naked bike ride in the middle of summer, but a January ride takes balls, uh, guts. If you have to steal an ebike, probably not the best idea to take one marked “evidence” from the police impound yard.

And someone get me some ice and a skate, quick.

………

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

Prosecutors throw book at killer Show Low AZ driver, Streets For All blasts Garcetti, and Culver City to open mobility lane

My apologies for yesterday’s server outage that knocked us offline all day. You can catch up on everything you missed here

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More mass casualty bike crashes in the news, as an Arizona website offers an update on the case against Shawn Michael Chock.

Chock is accused of deliberately slamming his massive pickup into a group of up to 50 competitors in a master’s bike race in Show Low, Arizona last June.

He ended up killing one man and injuring six other people when he smashed into the group, then backed his truck up and attempted to make another pass.

Prosecutors allege Chock huffed computer cleaning fluid before getting behind the wheel, whether that motivated the attack or simply gave him the courage to carry it out.

He was shot by police after fleeing the scene and engaging in a standoff with cops behind a local hardware store, and was arrested on his release from the hospital.

He continues to be held on a half million dollars bond, facing decades behind bars on charges including 2nd degree murder, aggravated assault against a peace officer and eight other counts of aggravated assault, leaving the scene of a collision involving death or serious injury, and unlawful flight from a law enforcement vehicle.

His next court hearing is on the 29th of this month. Hopefully in a courtroom full of bike riders.

The website adds that Chock is presumed by court to be innocent until proven guilty.

Thankfully, we’re under no such obligation.

Photo by Sora Shimazaki from Pexels.

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Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Garcetti spoke with Spectrum News 1 about his climate goals following COP26. Although as we’ve seen too many times, the mayor is great at talking, not so good at following through.

Meanwhile, bike scribe and historian Carlton Reid takes the COP26 climate conference to task for inexplicably ignoring the quickest and most efficient way to decarbonize.

Bicycles.

That was the same message contained in a letter from over 80 bicycle organizations around the world, who argued that “government leaders must commit to boosting cycling levels to reduce carbon emissions and reach global climate goals quickly and effectively.”

Cycling represents one of humanity’s greatest hopes for a shift towards a zero-carbon future. New research shows that life-cycle CO₂ emissions drop by 14% per additional cycling trip and by 62% for each avoided car trip. Switching from a car to a bicycle saves 150g of CO₂ per kilometre. E-cargo bikes cut carbon emissions by 90%compared with diesel vans. Swapping the car in cities for walking and cycling even just one day a week can reduce your carbon footprint by about half a tonne of CO₂ over a year. Building synergies with other travel modes such as public transport can critically enhance this potential.

Our world is on fire. We must urgently leverage the solutions that cycling offers by radically scaling up its use. What we need now is for governments to politically and financially commit to more, safer and integrated cycling that is equitable for everyone living in our countries, cities and regions…

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Culver City is opening the city’s first mobility lane designed for scooters, bikes and ebikes on November 20th.

https://twitter.com/CulverCityBus/status/1455594901454741504

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Both San Diego and San Jose are celebrating open streets events this Sunday, with San Jose hosting Viva CalleSJ.

And the San Diego Bike Coalition co-hosting CicloSDias on the streets of Pacific Beach.

Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up. 

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Leone also reminds us to take extra precautions as Daylight Savings ends this Sunday.

Make sure you have lights on your bike if you’ll be riding after dark, with the sun setting around 5 pm next week; I also carry lights with me anytime I ride in the late afternoon, in case a flat or mechanical problem delays my return.

And ride defensively, especially for the first few days next week, because the initial days after Daylight Savings ends are always among the worst days for traffic collisions.

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Damn, that really is a close call. If the guy on the bike hadn’t been a cop, the driver probably would have gotten away with it.

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

San Diego police are looking for a man riding a blue mountain bike with black rims and silver spokes, who is described as a person of interest after a woman was sexually assaulted in a Mission Bay restroom.

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Local

LADOT is planning to extend the bike lanes on Riverside Drive in Los Feliz from Glendale Blvd to Los Feliz Drive, after the street is resurfaced over the next year; the work will also include upgraded paint and crosswalks.

A writer for the Financial Times laments LA’s unrealized potential as a bicycling city. As do we all.

Santa Monica-based Bird is planning to go public despite a history of financial losses, merging with a Dallas-based special purpose acquisition company in hopes of raising $384 million in capital.

Opening arguments began in the civil trial against a Metro contractor for the 2017 death of 13-year old Ciara Smith on PCH in Redondo Beach; her attorney blamed poor training of the driver, while the defense placed the blame on bad road design.

A 31-year old man was fatally shot while riding a bike in Long Beach on Friday.

 

State

Santa Barbara County will take its ebike demo to Santa Maria for five days this month, allowing people to try them out and even take one home overnight.

Sad news from Oakland, where an e-scooter rider was killed by a wrong-way driver who allegedly ran a red light; Streetsblog argues that the paint on the street was insufficient to protect her, or anyone else.

More in the Santa Rosa woman who was seriously injured in Saturday’s mass casualty bike collision in Liberty County, Texas; 59-year-old Barbara Anne Ferrell was one of three bicyclists struck by the driver while on a cross-country ride.

 

National

They get it. Fast Company compares the $12,500 tax incentive to buy an electric car contained in the stalled Build Back Better bill with the relatively paltry $1,500 tax break for buying an ebike, charging that the bill continues the harmful automotive dominance in our cities.

This is who we share the road with. Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Henry Ruggs III faces up to 20 years behind bars for the fiery, high-speed crash that killed an innocent woman and her equally innocent dog; he was released from the team hours after his arrest on felony DUI and reckless driving charges. You know you’re toxic when even the Raiders won’t touch you.

The bike theft scourge has infected the entire country, even in small Midwestern towns like Iowa City.

Hundreds of people turned out to honor a fallen Chicago man at a ghost bike ceremony yesterday, while a crowdfunding campaign for the popular amateur cyclist has raised more tha $164,000 in just four days.

 

International

Canadian mountain biker Magnus Manson has started the Conquer Your Challenge crowdfunding campaign to raise funds for aspiring Canadian cyclists, as he battles stage 3 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma; he’s already topped the $10,000 goal bu raising over twelve grand.

A Toronto op-ed accuses the city of falling short on efforts to stop pedestrian traffic deaths, despite its Vision Zero program.

A Scottish legal columnist explains the defense of automatism — where someone isn’t in control of their actions through no fault of their own and have no knowledge of what happened — after a driver was acquitted of killing a man on a bike because she claimed she had no memory of the crash.

A website in Scotland recommends banning cars from schools and building a walking culture in kids to improve safety and cut climate-damaging emissions. Although they should also add riding their bikes to school to that.

A South African musician is scaling up the country’s first ebike delivery service.

 

Competitive Cycling

British cyclist Alex Dowsett is in Mexico City, attempting to retake the hour record he first set in 2015.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to steal a bike, at least have the decency to leave your old one in its place. Who needs carbon fiber when you can build your own bike out of wood?

And why carry a tent on your bike when you can build your very own self-powered wooden e-camper van bike?

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

Blood on Garcetti’s hands as hit-and-run driver murders mom on Vista Del Mar, and big pickups blind drivers to little kids

We knew it was going to happen.

Just four years after a road diet was unceremoniously ripped out on deadly Vista Del Mar, a mother was killed by a hit-and-run driver while carrying her three-year old son.

And immediately, local residents jumped in to demand that something be done to stop the street’s speeding drivers.

Like this man who was quoted by KCBS-2.

A day after the tragic incident, some neighbors are saying that something needs to be done about people speeding down Vista Del Mar.

“Nobody respects the speed limit here,” said a neighbor Adolfo Navarro. “I mean, you’ll see the cops on motorcycles here during the day enforcing it, but at night, it’s…you can hardly see because the lights don’t even gloom right and then you can only see as far as you can using your headlights.”

Except something was done.

And Playa del Rey residents and Manhattan Beach commuters immediately got out the torches and pitchforks demanding its removal, until our weak-kneed mayor cut the legs out from under the local councilmember to force its removal.

Now every damn one of them have this woman’s blood on their hands.

CD11 Councilmember Mike Bonin had ordered the road diet when the city was forced to settle a lawsuit for $9.5 million, two years after 16-year-old Naomi Larsen was killed while crossing the road at Dockweiler Beach.

Just like 33-year old Wendy Galdamez Palma on Saturday night.

Bonin understood that, without quick action, people would continue to die on the killer street.

And the next settlement would make that $9.5 million look like peanuts.

So he ordered LADOT to implement a long planned, and long delayed, road diet on Vista Del Mar, along with a handful of other local streets.

Unfortunately, the work was done over a weekend, without warning or public announcements, resulting in massive traffic backups and the inevitable hot tempers.

And somehow, everyone blamed bike lanes — and bike riders in general — for the road diet, even though LADOT used diagonal parking to narrow the street, rather than bike lanes, so speeding drivers wouldn’t keep killing people.

So in the face of demands from angry cut-through commuters, as well as lawsuits and threats of recalls — that was back in the day, before recalls were an everyday thing — Garcetti ordered all the road diets and bike lanes that had been installed on other streets removed.

Making Bonin look like a hapless fool.

And making more deaths inevitable.

As an added bonus, the actions of the future ambassador to India undercut virtually every road diet that had been planned anywhere in the City of Angels, as councilmembers ran scared, and quickly concluded they’d rather see more needless deaths than have those angry drivers come after them.

Most notably on LA’s Temple Street, where both CD1’s Gil Cedillo and CD13’s Mitch O’Farrell quickly backed out of a desperately needed, shovel-ready lane reduction.

Which was soon followed by CD2 Councilmember Paul Krekorian cancelling plans for similar safety improvements on Lankershim Blvd in North Hollywood.

That’s how we ended up with bike riders and pedestrians continuing to die on our streets, six years after the city adopted Vision Zero, and just four years until traffic deaths were supposed to be a thing of the past.

Yeah, right.

Never mind an ever rising epidemic of hit-and-runs, as drivers recognized just how unlikely they are to be caught. And just how likely they are to get away with a slap on the wrist if they are.

All of which brings us to the needless death of a mother cradling her child in her arms, who reportedly turned away from the oncoming car to sacrifice her life in order to save his.

I honestly don’t know what to say anymore.

Wendy Palma did not need to die. Steps were taken to tame high speed drivers on deadly Vista Del Mar. And spineless cowards took them out.

Which means the next legal settlement won’t by $9.6 million, but significantly higher. Because the city knew there was a problem there, and not only didn’t fix it, they actually removed the fix.

And the one after that will be higher still.

And the one after that.

And people will keep dying, because the cowards in City Hall don’t have the courage to do anything about it.

Photo shows the road diet that was removed from Vista Del Mar.

………

If a driver can’t see what’s on the road directly in front of them, they shouldn’t be allowed on the road.

Period.

………

Everyone knows you can’t carry stuff home from the market or hardware store on a bicycle.

Let alone a dozen kegs.

Right?

https://twitter.com/pedalmeapp/status/1436314640825393153

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

This is who we share the road with. A British driver somehow seems to find humor in seeing an injured bike rider on the side of the road. Schmuck.

https://twitter.com/ldnparks/status/1435872982610612224?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1435930878392274949%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es3_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cyclingweekly.com%2Fnews%2Fgrim-viewing-as-video-emerges-of-driver-mocking-injured-cyclist-in-richmond-park

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

London police “nicked” a teenage fake food delivery rider who was dispensing cannabis instead of food, catching him with nine bags of weed and the equivalent of more than $700 in cash.

It takes a major schmuck to punch a British man walking his dog and kick him in the head, just because the man asked a passing bike rider to slow down.

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Local

Speaking of Mike Bonin, the councilmember announced improved bollard-protected bike lanes on Airport Blvd in Westchester (scroll down), even if half the riding area is in the gutter.

The LA County Sheriff’s Department’s Fugitive Task Force busted a man riding a bicycle in West Hollywood who was wanted for a New York murder, after his barber gave away his location by posting a photo of him getting a haircut on Instagram.

Fifty South Bay bike riders honored bicycling advocate Julian Katz with a ride in his memory, three years after Katz passed away at the age of 88.

They get it. The Long Beach Business Journal makes the case that a $20 million reconstruction plan for Artesia Blvd through Compton, Long Beach, Cerritos and Paramount, including an upgraded bike lane, will be good for business growth along the corridor.

 

State

San Diego will be the first US city to get the Bird, as the Santa Monica-based company deploys a fleet of their new ebikes in the city.

Twenty-eight-year old ex-con Martin Valdez Arias has been charged with randomly attacking a woman while riding his bike on a Ventura bike path; he faces charges of false imprisonment by violence and attempted sexual battery.

A travel website offers tips on how to ride your bike across San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge.

 

National

They get it, too. Vox says US cities must be designed to encourage much more biking, walking and transit use to end America’s obsession with driving and fight climate change.

A Denver PBS station looks at the local chapter of Black Girls Do Bike, a nationwide group dedicated getting more Black women to ride bikes. And dispelling the myth that they don’t.

Authorities are looking for a man who went missing not far from my Colorado hometown after he set out for bike ride on Friday, and never came home.

A Missouri construction crew devised a brilliant solution to keep the 287-mile Katy trail open during a bridge replacement project, using shipping containers to form a makeshift tunnel to protect riders from falling debris.

A Chicago group gave away 75 refurbished bicycles to kids from two to ten years old, as well as giving them basic safety training.

This is who we share the road with. A three-month old Brooklyn baby is dead, and her mother clinging to life, after a wrong way driver slammed into another car, and both vehicles spun out onto the sidewalk; the driver, who had an incredible 160 traffic violations in the past four years, attempted — and failed — to jack another car to flee following the crash. Just one more example of authorities keeping dangerous drivers on the road until it’s too late.

Don’t hold your breath. New York’s mayor promises answers after the NYPD turned a new bike lane into their own parking lot.

A New Yorker gets his stolen bike back two months later, after spotting it in a photo of abandoned bikes recovered by the police.

Camila Cabello is one of us, riding her bike with a friend on the streets of New York.

An Atlantic City paper is surprised to learn that county officials have been building a bike network for the past decade, but they support the effort, saying rising bike deaths make it a necessity.

No surprise here. A Pottsville PA cop wasn’t charged for killing a 31-year old man who reportedly was struck when he rode his bike into an intersection; no word on who actually had the right-of-way, or whether the officer was using lights and siren. Unfortunately, police have a well-deserved reputation for blaming the victim in any crash involving a cop.

 

International

If you think traffic is driving you nuts, you may be right. A new study shows exposure to traffic and railroad noise increases the risk of dementia in general, and Alzheimer’s in particular.

A Canadian man is looking for the Good Samaritans who came to his rescue after he did a face plant when a brake cable snapped on a steep descent, while visiting family in Vancouver.

A Toronto columnist says the future of the city’s downtown is not car-friendly. And that’s a good thing.

A man in the UK will spend the next six months behind bars for violating his probation, after being caught in possession of a bicycle that wasn’t registered with police, which was a condition of his suspended sentence for selling weed; he had been allowed back on the streets despite 13 previous convictions.

An Irish paper says carfree housing developments don’t have to be a utopian ideal, and that removing cars from homes can eliminate the risk they pose to children.

A new Netherlands study show bicycling injuries in the country are eight times higher than what has been reported by the police.

United Arab Emirates VP Sheikh Mohammed is one of us, taking to his bike to explore Dubai’s World Expo site ahead of its opening next month. Although he doesn’t look very happy about it, at least in the top photo.

September is the most dangerous month to ride a bike in South Korea, with August second.

More confirmation that Russell Crowe is one of us, as he took his mountain bike out for a spin around Sidney, Australia with his girlfriend.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dutch cyclist Pascal Eenkhoorn was the star of Saturday’s 7th stage of the Tour of Britain for handing his water bottle to a young fan who pedaled furiously along the sidewalk to keep up with the lead breakaway.

 

Finally…

Let’s be honest, it would probably be worth the $6.51 fine to ride with a jet engine on your bike. That feeling when you’re tired of horseshit bike lanes — no, literally. Or get attacked by a pair of naked and mostly naked men.

And who says you need a surfboard to ride the waves?

………

On a personal note, yesterday marked the 14th anniversary of the Infamous Beachfront Bee Incident. But I’m still here, and the bees aren’t.

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

Garcetti forgets bikes in Green New Deal, a better take on how to ride a bike, and remembering West’s first collegiate cyclist

Infuriating, perhaps.

But not surprising.

Spectrum News 1 talks with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti about the current status of LA’s Green New Deal, but he doesn’t have a word to say about transportation beyond transitioning to electric cars.

L.A.’s Green New Deal is pursuing four basic pillars, to reduce emissions from energy generation, transportation, and buildings, and to reduce waste to zero. What have been the easiest and most difficult pieces to tackle?

It’s easy to say the goals of our Green New Deal, but they’re all incredible stretch goals. The one that is the most challenging is to create an electricity grid that has no carbon emissions and that in the middle of the night or in the face of an earthquake or disaster can still be dependable. It’s easy to turn on a coal or natural gas plant and have it churn out the electricity we need. Our solar project that we’re building in the high desert is cheaper than a natural gas plant. It can store maybe one to two days of power. If there’s an earthquake, we may need six months of power. We’re proudly moving off coal at our biggest power plant in Utah with a turbine plant that can be hydrogen. We believe we’ll be the first big utility to run partly on hydrogen.

Second is transportation. Everybody in this car culture of L.A. expects to go to a gas station, fill up your car, and keep going. It’s just as easy to have an electric car. You can just charge it at night, and it takes two seconds to plug it in, but that draw on our grid will be immense. We have to double the amount of electricity we generate and make sure that it’s renewable.

Which pretty much confirms suspicions that he’s abandoned once ambitious plans to reshape how we get around the city, from adding a network of safer bike lanes to installing bus-only lanes throughout the city, in the face of the usual opposition to virtually any non-car transportation project.

Because in Los Angeles, when the going gets tough, we just give up and call it an incredible stretch goal.

Today’s photo is by Adrien Olichon from Pexels, depicting the kind of projects that should be built under LA’s Green New Deal, but probably won’t, because it’s hard.

………

Every now and then, someone says it exactly right.

Like this opinion piece from Road.cc.

Ride your bike as much as you like, as far as you like, but don’t judge yourself or your riding success by volume of miles. Measure all of this by what happened along the way, the stories you can tell, the places you visited, the views you paused in front of, and the people and characters you met.

………

Nice piece from Cal Lutheran, as a woman remembers her late husband, who passed away from cancer after a lifetime of bicycling.

The couple met as students at the Thousand Oaks university in the ’60s, after he competed for the school as one of the first college bike racers on the West Coast.

Yet he continued to work on his bike collection even after the disease robbed him of his ability to ride in his 70s — including the Pinarello that Alexi Grewal rode to gold in the ’84 Los Angeles Olympics.

………

Mark your calendar for Streets For All’s next Zoom happy hour next week.

https://twitter.com/streetsforall/status/1346167985166290945

………

Nothing like making little kids dodge parked cars where there used to be a bike lane just a week before.

But if you don’t see anyone using a regular traffic lane, that means it’s not needed.

Right?

………

Sometimes you don’t have to speak the language to get the idea.

https://twitter.com/piotr_makowiec/status/1346044554022187008

………

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

No bias here. It turns out the incident where a group of teenaged bike riders attacked a pair of New York drivers began when a BMW driver brake-checked one of the kids — intentionally or otherwise. But naturally, it was the kid on the bike who got the blame for crashing into it. On the other hand, violence is never the answer, regardless of the reason.

No bias here, either, as a British bike rider on a Penny Farthing gets the blame for crashing into a delivery van, even though the driver clearly cut him off.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a 20-year old British man walked with a suspended sentence for reaching out of a car and pulling a man off his bicycle, leaving the victim lying in agony on the side of the road with a broken elbow and fractured hands.

………

Local

Criminal proceedings have been suspended in the case of an ex-con who ran down a Glendale bike rider with a stolen car before crashing into a pair of cars last month, after questions arose about parolee Sean Slade’s mental fitness and his ability to understand the case against him.

 

State

A Seal Beach police lieutenant says yes, anyone under 18 has to wear a helmet when riding a bicycle in California, and you have to have reflectors on your bike after dark. Although you’d think he might have mentioned that you’re required to have a light, too.

San Diego police are looking for the hit-and-run driver who left a 70-year old man with a broken leg after slamming into him while he was riding his bike in a crosswalk.

 

National

The woman who starred as the much-maligned Peloton wife says she has a sense of humor about it a year later, and rides the stationary bike the company sent her virtually every day.

A coalition of Las Vegas-area advocacy groups is holding a competition to design a memorial jersey and bibs to honor the five bicyclists killed by a truck driver last month, to raise money for the Las Vegas Cyclist Memorial Fund.

The accused meth-using driver in that Las Vegas crash continues to be held without bond as a flight risk, as he faces a possible 100 years behind bars if he’s convicted on all 14 charges.

Kindhearted Indiana cops teamed with the local Walmart to replace the bike a young girl got for Christmas, after a thief cut the lock and stole it off her porch.

An Ohio city is looking to improve pedestrian safety, but only after a seven-year old was killed by a driver while riding his bike. As usual, city leaders were only spurred to action after it was too late for an innocent victim.

‘Tis still the season. Bike donations continue to make the news, as 135 kids got new bikes in a contactless, drive-through bicycle giveaway in upstate New York. So were kids out of luck if their parents don’t have a car?

VeloNews talks with a member of New York’s Major Taylor Iron Riders bicycle club about what it means to be a Black bike rider in the US bicycling scene.

The New York Times examines why emptier streets led to a jump in New York traffic fatalities, as deaths climbed to their highest level since the city adopted Vision Zero in 2014.

 

International

Greenpeace highlights eleven places that put people over cars, including a bike-friendly cities and countries around the world.

Your next ebike could be a 102-pound, 30 mph electric motorcycle with pedals.

Another one bites the dust, as the annual London Bike Show is cancelled after the owner goes belly up due to the pandemic.

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list. An off-road gravel path winds a 125 miles through the Pyrenees, connecting the French Basque Country to Basque villages in Spain.

Singapore bike riders support a call to require fixies to have at least one working brake.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling Weekly plays fashion cop, judging this year’s kits for WorldTour cycling teams.

Pro cyclists give their tips on how to keep riding through the winter.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you find yourself sharing the bike path with a Giant Galapagos Tortoise. If you’re going to write about how to avoid bike crashes to show your law firm’s expertise, get it right, already.

And those damn cyclists always insist on riding on the sidewalk.

Right?

………

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

Rule change could ban bikes from streets, Garcetti distracted by shiny flying object, and $25k reward in Specialized bike thefts

Just six days left in the 6th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to everyone who’s given so far for their generous donations to help keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day. 

For everyone else, what are you waiting for?

Time’s running out! Give to the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive today!

And come back after 10:30 this morning for a guest post by Phillip Young that could improve your chances of being seen on the road.

………

Unbelievable.

If a proposed Federal Highway Administration rule change goes into effect, you could be banned from riding on any street without bike lanes or signage.

Jonathan Maus of Bike Portland writes that a phrase explicitly stating that the absence of bike infrastructure doesn’t mean bikes aren’t allowed is in danger of being changed to say just the opposite.

Image from FHWA website via bikeportland.org

He writes that the change is buried in a major update to the massive Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices published by the Federal Highway Administration on Friday and posted to the Federal Register on Monday.

This change, which has proposed under the Trump administration but will be finalized in the Biden administration — has set off shockwaves in the bicycle advocacy world. It was first pointed out on Twitter this afternoon by League of American Bicyclists Policy Director Ken McLeod.

Reached on the phone from his office in Washington D.C. a few minutes ago, McLeod said the change is so surprising it “seems like a mistake”. “But at same time,” he added, “Why we you trust that it’s a typo? I think we need to treat this seriously and as real.”

Even if it were a mistake, if it wasn’t caught by McLeod it would have likely ended up as binding federal law. The MUTCD is supposed to be updated every 3-4 years, but it’s taken 10 years for this update to happen. That led McLeod to say, if this was done in error, “It could take a long time to fix.”

Let’s hope it really is a mistake.

And not one more last-minute rule change slipped in by the outgoing Trump administration.

………

It’s going to be a long two years.

That’s how much time is left in LA Mayor Eric Garcetti’s final term, after the mayor was apparently snubbed by the Biden administration, despite rumors he was a prime candidate for a cabinet-level position.

Because instead refocusing on the city’s long forgotten Mobility Plan, the failed Vision Zero program or the mayor’s own Green New Deal that promised to change how Angelenos get around, he’s shifted his attention to this shiny object — a proposed flying taxi service, which will benefit only those rich enough to use it.

And allow the wealthy to zoom over LA’s clogged and deadly streets, while the rest of us are forced to slog it out down here on the ground.

………

Mike Wilkinson forward news that Lakewood is taking comments on a new master plan that would impact Rynerson Park, an important access point for the San Gabriel River Trail.

………

Specialized is offering a $25,000 reward to recover the bicycles, many of them one of a kind, that were stolen from their Morgan Hill CA headquarters over the weekend.

The thieves made off with $160,000 dollars worth of prototypes, race-winning bikes and personal bicycles belonging to employees that were on display in the building.

Anyone with information can call Morgan Hill Police Department Cpl. Mindy Zen at 669/253-4917 or the department’s anonymous tip line at 408/947-7867.

………

A virtual memorial ride will be held on Zwift tomorrow to honor the five Las Vegas bicyclists killed by an alleged meth-addled truck driver.

The ride is being hosted by a former Vegas police officer who was on the ride at the time of the crash.

You can read the story on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you out.

………

This is why you should register your bike with Bike Index.

It’s free. It lasts a lifetime. It’s transferable. It’s used by the LAPD.

And it works.

………

Everyone needs a bike day every now and then.

Even him.

………

………

Local

No news is good news, right? 

 

State

Streetsblog explains what to do if you’ve been victimized by the driver of an illegally modified pickup rolling coal.

A San Jacinto bike rider suffered major trauma to both legs when he was struck by an alleged drunk driver early Thursday morning; he was hospitalized in serious but stable condition.

San Francisco considers dropping the speed limit to 20 mph in the city’s deadly Tenderloin District. Or better yet, why not the entire city?

Bay Area advocates complain that a new $6 million bike and pedestrian access tube in Alameda would be just as useless as the one it’s supposed to replace.

A planned Ripon bike path is being threatened by habitat for a rare threatened species of beetle.

 

National

Yes, there is haircare hope for Black bike riders. Again, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you out.

The Verge tries out Harley Davidson’s new ebikes, and likes just about everything but the price. Meanwhile, New Atlas looks at ebike makers who did things differently this year.

Moving piece from Singletracks, as an Idaho man takes to his mountain bike to ride through grief over the death of his sister. I did the same thing on my roadie after my dad’s death, and again with my mother and both my in-laws; there’s something about riding that allows you to process loss in ways you can’t otherwise. Or I couldn’t, anyway.

They get it. Missoula, Montana is considering a plan to reduce speed limits on residential streets to 20 mph to prevent crashes and reduce their severity. Meanwhile, Los Angeles and other California cities continue to let drivers push speed limits ever higher thanks to the deadly 85th Percentile Law.

Texas Monthly talks with Austin bespoke bikemaker Nao Tomli.

‘Tis the season. A Texas investigative reporter helps out a family in need with nearly $2,000 in gifts, including bikes for all the kids.

‘Tis the season too. An Ohio group donates 24 bicycles to boys victimized by domestic violence, despite being shut down most of this year.

New York bike advocates complain that many of the city’s bike lanes are too wide, inviting people to drive or park in them; the city’s sanitation department wants the wide widths to accommodate their garbage trucks and snow plows.

Streetsblog New York says the NYPD’s bike safety tweets would make a pretty good comedy routine. Except they’re not funny.

New York continues to experience Vision Zero in reverse, as the city’s streets keep getting deadlier, despite earlier progress.

The family of a Florida bike rider call for lights to be installed on a Jacksonville bridge after an 18-year old boy hit a wall when the sidewalk ended, flipping him over; sadly, his body wasn’t found until a week later.

 

International

This year’s bicycle shortage could just be foreshadowing even worse supply problems next year.

A writer for Treehugger says her only regret in trading the family car for a cargo bike was not doing it sooner.

The founder of British bikeshare firm Beryl writes that bikeshare can help drive gender parity in bicycling.

A UK bike nonprofit urges local councils to be brave in the face of angry opposition to active transportation projects.

A fact-checking site says not so fast about that survey showing Brits ready to dump the Conservatives in anger over bike lanes.

The British manufacturer of the illegally overpowered electric trail motorcycle Simon Cowell was riding when he broke his back says it’s not their fault he cranked the throttle too far.

 

Competitive Cycling

Belgium’s Woot van Aert won the Crystal Bicycle award as the country’s best cyclist.

 

Finally…

You gotta love a new high-end aero bike inspired by The Clash. Where to catch a draft in a bike race.

And that feeling when your latest object of lust was built in the ’90s.

No, the 1890s.

………

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

Chief Lunes cyclist dies in Vegas car crash, removing cops from traffic enforcement, and no 15-minute city in LA

My apologies for Friday’s unexcused absence. 

Between my diabetes, neuropathy and whatever the hell else was going on, Thursday was one of the worst nights I’ve had in recent memory.

Just one more reminder that I’m not in charge of my own body any more.

Which is a very hard thing for a formerly dedicated bicyclist to face.

And another reminder to see your doctor, improve your diet, and do whatever it takes to keep your blood sugar under control. 

Because you really don’t want this shit. Especially now

Photo by Sabine van Erp from Pixabay.

………

Let’s start with some heartbreaking news.

Many of us got to know Spencer Sims, either directly or through sites like this, following the hit-and-run death of bike rider Frederick “Woon” Frazier in South LA two years ago.

Like Woon, Sims was a member of the Chief Lunes cycling group, and was one of the leaders in the fight for justice for Frazier, as well as his mother and infant child, who was born after his death.

For well over a year afterwards, I got emails from Sims about the status of the case and the next moves in their battle for justice.

Sadly, I won’t be getting any more.

It took awhile to confirm, but Spencer Sims was killed, along with another man, in a single-car collision outside Las Vegas last week, when 19-year old driver lost control and the car they were riding in left the road.

Neither man was wearing a seat belt.

There were apparently no witnesses to the crash; a passerby reported finding the wreckage sometime later. Just a couple more sacrifices to the motor vehicle gods.

Now Woon’s mother will be even more alone and isolated without Sims looking in on her.

And he leaves this world without ever seeing justice for his friend and fellow rider. After a retracted confession and countless delays, Mariah Candice Banks, the woman accused of killing Woon in her high-end SUV, has yet to set foot in a courtroom for anything other than her arraignment.

Her long-delayed prelim is now scheduled for November 4th.

Sims won’t be there; let’s hope he and Woon are riding together somewhere. But maybe some of us can take his place.

………

LAist makes the case for why we may not really need police to enforce traffic laws and curb traffic violence, suggesting there are effective alternatives like automated enforcement and self-enforcing street design.

This summer, a group of L.A. City Council members filed a motion calling on the city’s Department of Transportation and legislative officials to work with community members and report back on alternative methods of traffic enforcement, collision investigations and other traffic safety duties currently handled by the Los Angeles Police Department.

Some potential changes that will be explored: replacing LAPD officers with a “transit ambassador program” staffed by unarmed LADOT personnel and/or automated technology to monitor and cite drivers for speeding, illegal turns and other moving violations.

“Such a move would virtually eliminate the LAPD’s role in traffic stops, one of the leading forms of interaction between police and the public,” states the motion, which was filed by L.A. City Councilmembers Marqueece Harris-Dawson, Mike Bonin, Curren Price and Herb Wesson.Breonna

It’s a challenging and thought-provoking read, well worth a few minutes of your time.

Because the current system really isn’t working for anyone.

………

The C40 Cities — a group of 96 cities dedicated to taking action to fight climate change — says the concept of a 15-minute city is rapidly spreading around the world.

That’s the idea that you should be able to walk, bike or take transit to anything you need within 15 minutes of your home or office.

Except here in Los Angeles, of course.

Where the car continues to be king, nothing even slightly resembling a bike network exists anywhere outside of Downtown, and Metro just locked in major service cuts for at least the next year.

Never mind that LA Mayor Eric Garcetti is the current chair of the Metro board. Not to mention chair of C-40 Cities.

Or are we not supposed to notice that?

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

………

This is who we share the roads with, protest edition.

A truck driver floored it after encountering a Breonna Taylor protest in Hollywood, plowing through the crowd and seriously injuring a woman who was standing directly in front of his pickup.

That was followed by the driver of a Prius who forced his way through the crowd before being stopped and attacked with skateboards and bicycles.

A person was injured when a pickup driver plowed through a racial justice protest in Eureka, appearing to strike several people; the regional Coalition for Responsible Transportation condemned the attack.

A Milwaukee woman was injured when a driver accidentally hit her bike as she was riding on the wrong side of the road during a protest.

A Buffalo, New York woman faces charges for intentionally driving through a Bronna Taylor protest, seriously injuring a woman working as a bike marshal,

However, an Orange County woman flipped the script, seriously injuring two people by driving through a conservative, pro-Trump rally; 40-year old Long Beach resident Tatiana Turner was arrested.

………

In a truly sickening action, a Seattle bike cop deliberately rolled his police bicycle over the head of a protestor lying prone in the street.

He was immediately placed on leave after the video surfaced, pending an investigation., while the victim decried the apparent disregard for human life.

Let’s hope this is the last time that cop wears blue.

A little further south in Portland, police threw an Uber delivery rider off his bike and hogtied him, even as he insisted he was just doing his job and had nothing to do with the protests.

………

VeloNews follows along as five riders and a camera crew hope to inspire others with a 1,114-mile journey bikepacking tour exploring the Underground Railroad.

………

Gravel Bike California goes riding in Puerco Canyon, as well as Latino Canyon and the iconic Rock Store.

For those Español challenged like me, that translates to Pig Canyon.

Just so you know.

………

Slow Streets comes to Altadena, where most streets are, anyway.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

A New York woman recounts her recent hit-and-run, describing a deliberate attack by a driver who knew he could get away with it.

Police are looking for a man who jumped off some rocks to attack two bicyclists with a bat as they rode on a paved trail through a Philadelphia park.

A Scottish cyclist reports an elderly “gentleman” tried to run him and another rider off the road, slowing down and swerving into them just after they completed a 31-hour, 560-mile ride. Although that pretty much defies any definition of gentleman I’m familiar with.

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

Long Beach police are looking for a bike-riding gunman who killed another man in an early morning bike-by shooting.

A defense lawyer in Canada’s Northwest Territories argues that his client was too drunk to form the intent necessary for murder, after killing another man following a day of bicycling in a drunken stupor.

………

Local

Metro Bike is shutting down operations on LA’s Westside for a couple months starting today, as the system expands and unifies the Westside and Central bikeshare networks, as well as bringing in the popular ebike service.

Despite the budget cuts, Metro’s new long-range budget included plans to close the long-standing eight-mile gap in the LA River bike path, and provide better bike access to DTLA. Because evidently, those must be the only places anyone would ever want to go on a bicycle.

 

State

SoCal ebike maker Electric Bike Company has opened their first showroom in Huntington Beach.

A San Diego nonprofit is working with local small businesses to train young adults to work in the bicycle industry.

A Ventura man celebrated his miraculous recovery from a near-fatal mountain bike crash by paddle boarding 14 miles back to Channel Islands Harbor Marina from Anacapa Island.

Bay Area bike riders dropped Bike to Work Day and celebrated Bike to Wherever Day last week, instead.

San Francisco finally gets around to opening a carfree route through Golden Gate Park.

Seriously? A woman who was injured riding a Jump scooter in San Francisco has filed a class action suit against several e-scooter companies, including Uber and Segway, because…wait for it…no one warned consumers that scooters don’t have turn signals. No one tell her about bicycles.

 

National

How to access bicycling directions in the latest version of Apple Maps.

The former head of the League of American Bicyclists says it’s time to stop relying on commuter data as the primary measure to make traffic planning decisions, because there’s a lot more to transportation.

America’s only remaining Tour de France winner is back in the bike business with a small line of carbon ebikes that are a far cry from the road bikes he used to be known for.

Minneapolis’ Black-led Major Taylor bike club has been working for two decades to get more people of color on bicycles.

How to navigate your next bike vacation in the Big Apple.

 

International

An op-ed from The Guardian calls for media reporting guidelines for traffic safety, arguing that how stories are reported and the language used contribute to the dangers on our roads and how the law is applied.

He gets it. Another writer for The Guardian says denying a child the joys of riding a bicycle is an abdication of parental responsibility, adding “No video game, Covid-19 lockdown or computer simulation can replace the childhood liberation of being alone on a bicycle.”

E-cargo bikes are already replacing trucks in cities around the world.

Chances are, a 13-year old dog may have visited more countries by bike than you have, traveling through 26 countries on a two-year bike tour of Europe and South America.

Cycling Weekly directs your attention to the best eco-conscious bikewear brands.

Needless to say, Vancouver bike riders aren’t happy about the closure of a popup bike lane through a park, because drivers somehow insisted they needed two lanes each way for their cars. Yes, choosing cars over people in a park.

A bighearted Cambridge University academic replaced a speech therapist’s stolen bike, because they’d helped him so much when he was diagnosed with a severe speech impediment as a child.

An 11-year old English girl rode a tandem 70 miles with her dad to visit all 12 cricket clubs in the North Staffordshire area, raising more than four times her original goal of £500 for cardiac risk assessments for young people; she’s raised the equivalent of over $2,800.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 93-year old British man raced competitively until he was 80, and still rides 150 miles a week.

A bike rider in the UK recorded 14 drivers traveling through a popup bike lane in just 35 minutes. Kind of makes you wonder how many went through it the other 23 hours and 25 minutes.

Forget CicLAvia. The entire city of Paris left their cars at home for one day for the city’s annual carfree day.

Parisian pedestrians find themselves competing for space with bike riders on the city’s busy streets.

France is introducing a new victim-blaming bike safety campaign as bicycling injuries go up with more people taking to the streets on two wheels.

Once again, a bike rider is a hero. An Indian family is alive today because an anonymous bike rider was in the right place at the right time, leaping into action to pull them to safety after their car went off the road and into a natural drain before simply riding away afterwards; sadly, though, he wasn’t able to save the family’s three-year old girl.

Bicycling violations are up as in Japan as bicycling booms during the pandemic.

Malaysian bike riders take issue with a call from the country’s road safety institute to license bicyclists and require numbered plates, saying it would not improve traffic safety.

 

Competitive Cycling

Julian Alaphilippe won the world road championships with a late attack, becoming the first Frenchman to wear the rainbow jersey in over two decades.

Anna van der Breggen continued the Dutch dominance of the women’s road worlds, as the country placed three of the four top finishers; cyclists from the Netherlands have won the event four years in a row. Van de Breggen claimed the time trial title, too.

Last week we mentioned defending champ Chloe Dygert was injured after wiping out during the women’s time trial world championships. Turns out that injury was more gruesome than any of us probably imagined.

 

Finally…

If he really was Lucifer, why would he need to steal a bike? Two hundred miles in 32 hours is pretty good — especially when you’re doing it on your daughter’s little pink girl’s bike.

And evidently, moose don’t like cars any more than people on bikes do.

………

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

G’mar Chatima Tovah!

Garcetti opens new DTLA bus and bike lanes, Cowell not injured on ebike, and Richmond advocate runs for council

LA Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the opening of the new 5th and 6th Street bus lanes and protected bike lanes in Downtown LA yesterday.

Although he seemed to forget the work of Skid Row residents and advocates in fighting for safe bikeways through the crowded city corridor most Angelenos prefer to avoid.

As well as taking credit for street improvements that don’t seem to be happening anywhere else outside of DTLA.

But let’s hope he’s serious about LA’s Green New Deal, which promises to reshape how we get around the city, while dramatically reducing the average miles driven by Angelenos.

And that he actually follows through this time.

Or am I the only one who still remembers the city’s abortive Vision Zero program?

………

Forget those reports about Simon Cowell breaking his back riding an ebike.

Not to mention the breathless reports about the supposed dangers of electric bicycles.

Because this one wasn’t. Unless by ebike, you mean something just this side of a motorcycle.

Or maybe the fastest ebike on Earth, even.

Although anything that’s throttle controlled or travels faster than 28 mph requires a driver’s license, registration and a helmet under California law.

Meanwhile, Cowell took the time to thank the medical workers who cared for him, calling them “some of the nicest people I have ever met.”

And said maybe he should have read the manual first.

………

This one made me smile.

Najari Smith, the founder of Richmond’s nonprofit Rich City Rides bike co-op, made the announcement that he’s running for the local city council this fall.

Like LA’s East Side Riders Bike Club, Smith works through the co-op to aid local youths and uplift the community, as well as helping people get on bikes who might not otherwise be able to afford it.

And knows firsthand what it’s like to get unjustly busted for Biking While Black.

Now we just need to talk the East Side Riders John Jones III to do the same thing here in LA.

………

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

A Half Moon Bay bike rider was repeatedly stabbed in a case of sidewalk rage after getting in a dispute with a man about riding on the sidewalk; his attacker now faces a charge of assault with a deadly weapon.

Um, okay. An Iowa woman is under arrest for threatening to kill a bike rider and slapping an apparently unidentified “Hardee’s cup of liquid” out of her hand.

……..

Local

The Órale Boyle Heights podcast talks with the man behind Peatónito, Mexico’s legendary pedestrian rights superhero, now living in Los Angeles.

Another measure of how much LA traffic dropped during the coronavirus lockdown — road rage incidents were down, too.

Tafarai Bayne, chief strategist for CicLAvia, makes a pitch for the LA open streets event.

Gerrard Butler is one of us, looking good on his knobby tired ebike on a spin through the ‘Bu.

 

State

San Diego is promoting bicycling in the city with a new Better by Bike blog.

Bakersfield is starting work on a seven-mile extension of the city’s Kern River bike path, which will result in a nearly 40-mile bikeway.

 

National

They get it. NPR says now is the time to start riding a bike, while a suburban Chicago site says bicycling is one saving grace of Covid-19.

Writing for Business Insider, former Chicago and DC DOT Director Gabe Klein teams with Kay Cheng to make the case for making the country’s Covid-19 street closures permanent.

Self talks with a couple of experts to recommend the best bikes for women. Not that their experts don’t know what they’re talking about. But there are countless others — including more than just one woman — they could have spoken with who know as much or more about the particular needs of women riders.

A surprising report from Reader’s Digest visits 15 “visually stunning” pedestrian bridges across the US, many of which are open to bike riders, too. Actually, the real surprise is that Reader’s Digest is still around.

A Colorado site says gravel biking is showing real staying power.

Houston is finally getting around to banning blocking bike lanes, and allowing scofflaw drivers to have their vehicles towed.

A Kentucky newspaper trots out a long-discredited stat to argue for a mandatory bike helmet law, calling them “a cyclist’s best line of defense,” without distinguishing between adults and children. No, the best defense is avoiding crashes in the first place through safe riding techniques, defensive bicycling and better infrastructure; helmets should always be seen as the last line of defense when all else fails. And they’re only designed to protect against slow speed falls, not high speed impacts.

New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare is backtracking on promises to put more ebikes on the streets, cutting the promised number from “thousands” to “hundreds.”

A frontline doctor treating Covid-19 patients in the Bronx says his daily bike rides have kept him sane, despite working 38 days straight.

Now that’s more like it. A new West Virginia insulation factory will give employees who commute by bike priority parking when it opens next year.

 

International

Bogotá, Columbia, has embarked on a bike lane building spree that could set the standard for Latin America, with 550 miles of bike lanes slated for completion within four years.

Coventry, England, is making an effort to return to its bicycling roots, despite its status as the UK’s Motor City equivalent,

London’s Evening Standard recommends all the gear you need to become a bicycle commuter. Or you could just get a bike and start riding.

Auto insurance claims for bike crashes have nearly doubled in the UK in recent months, presumably due to the increase in ridership due to the coronavirus lockdown.

Streetsblog questions whether it’s time for the US to adopt the Madrid Model of sandwiching bike lanes — or rather, slow vehicle lanes — between higher speed traffic lanes, saying it’s already showing safety improvements by moving riders from the edge of the roadway.

An Indian writer calls for a bicycle revolution to “drastically change the socio-economic and demographic distribution” of bicyclists, in a country where bike use is too often limited to the poorest households.

Singapore’s new pedestrian code of conduct calls for people on foot to use sidewalks and crosswalks instead of bikeways when they’re available. And not bury their faces in their phones.

An op-ed by a New Zealand physician says slowing speeds is a good start, but actually fixing the streets will make a bigger difference.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling says Max Fennell, the first black pro triathlete, wants more black athletes to realize their potential in endurance sports.

Doctors continue to say Dutch pro Fabio Jakobsen could return to racing if he wants, while predicting a long and arduous path to recover from the injuries he suffered in the Tour of Poland; speaking and eating will be a challenge, along with “aesthetic damage” to his face.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can go bike touring while pulling your very own mini-camper trailer. And apparently, your regular bike clothes just won’t due for gravel grinding.

……

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

Climate mayors call for 15 minute cities, thief ransacks Anaheim bike room, and trade your privacy for Road ID discount

A report from the C40 Cities group promotes the new Paris model of putting all necessities within a 15 minute biking or walking distance.

The climate group, currently led by LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, encourages the model as a response to municipal budgets ravaged by Covid-19.

Which makes it worth noting that the “world’s climate mayor” is doing nothing of the sort in his own city, except for encouraging greater density.

Which is problematic in itself, after a number of current and former city officials have been implicated in a bribery scheme to approve building projects.

As we’ve noted before, cities around the world have taken advantage of the lighter traffic brought on by the pandemic to make temporary, and sometimes permanent, changes to encourage more biking and walking.

Los Angeles, on the other hand, has done absolutely nothing outside of the Downtown area, where Councilmember Jose Huizar has been a driving force behind a move to Complete Streets.

He is also charged with being the ringleader behind the bribery scheme.

Which pretty much sums up the current state of the city.

………

A bike thief was caught on video ransacking an Anaheim building’s bike room. Which is exactly why I don’t recommend using them.

Bike rooms give the illusion of security while providing an enticing target for thieves. Better to find space in your home to keep your bikes inside.

And register your damn bike already.

https://twitter.com/lemusss29/status/1287897963927281664

………

Road ID is offering half off to VIP members starting tomorrow — if you’re willing to sacrifice your privacy to become one by signing up for texts.

I wear mine every time I ride my bike. And any other time I leave home.

But I also prefer to maintain a little privacy, and not get spammed with commercial messages every time I look at my phone.

………

Kiss guitarist Paul Stanley is one of us.

Orlando Bloom is one of us, too.

………

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

No surprise here, as Oregon bike riders report a rising tide of road rage incidents in recent months. Everyone is stressed because of the coronavirus and the resulting restrictions, which means too many drivers will end up taking it out on us.

Seriously? A moonlighting Arizona cop says he felt his life was threatened by a mountain biker who ignored no trespassing signs at a golf course while looking for a formerly accessible trailhead — so he tackled the rider off his bike and pulled a loaded gun on him during the scuffle, while insisting the victim somehow lunged off his bike at him.

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

Chicago police appear stumped about why a man on a bike shot and killed a Rastafarian community activist, though conservatives are quick to blame his surprising support for Donald Trump for his murder.

A New York bike rider went on a racist and homophobic obscenity-laced rant after an Asian driver honked at him, then faked an injury claiming the driver hit his “$11,000 bike.”

View this post on Instagram

“Kevin” in Brooklyn having a racist meltdown towards a Asian man #New York In the end “He brought the entire fire department and ambulance out because he was "injured" and then when they came, he proceeded to say that he was fine but wanted me arrested. To be very honest, I've never seen so many authorities roll their eyes all at once”. “Furthermore, he kept trying to harass Asian residents of 7th & 8th Ave., who came out to see what the commotion was about and were recording the entire thing in case he lied (which he did). While speaking with them, I also discovered that he apparently has a long history of doing this exact same thing to other Asian community members-unfortunately, many of his previous victims have been older Asian immigrants, unable to understand his racist language or DEFEND themselves due to the language barrier.” @kaiz4ne | | | | #pavelpaulinich #karensgoingwild #karen #kevin #racist #maga #racism #trump #equality #protest #protest #school #viral #viralpost #trending #asian #blm #karens #staywoke #car #roadrage #bike #bikers #asianamerican #usa #nyc #nycblogger #brooklyn #brooklynbridge #bikelife

A post shared by Pavel Paulinich News (@karensgoingwilds) on

……..

Local

Metro Bike is offering a bikeshare relief program through this month, with discounted passes ranging from a single $1 ride or 24-hour pass, to a $100 pass for a full year.

LA-area streets are being reimagined as outdoor dining spaces; the question is whether it will last post-pandemic. Actually, the real question is why we can find street space for restaurant patrons, but we can’t manage to find any for bike lanes.

KCRW’s Steve Chiotakis talks with Lex Roman, author of a guide to where to vote and how government works, about how you can become a more civically engaged Angeleno. Because most of us need to.

 

State

Encinitas has finished work on protected bike lanes and other infrastructure improvements, including mosaic art panels designed by local students and artists

Groups of wheelie-popping teens are ignoring the dismount signs on Santa Barbara’s newly pedestrianized State Street.

The Bay Area’s East Bay Times recommends more than a dozen “great, scenic bike trails” crisscrossing the region.

Yreka’s Leslie Burley-Cobb has been nominated for the BMX Hall of Fame; she was one of the first women in the sport in the late ’70s, collecting 268 trophies before she retired in 1985. Raise your hand if you knew there even was a BMX Hall of Fame. And yes, mine are firmly in my pockets. 

 

National

A Harvard professor is nearing the end of his cross-country bike ride to call attention to Black Lives Matter and Black Birders Week.

A writer for Gizmodo says riding an ebike has changed her entire perspective on how we get around.

Yahoo Life! says you don’t need bike shorts or clip-in shoes for these “cute” commuter bikes. Then again, you don’t need them for any other bikes, either.

“Beloved” international security expert and self-defense trainer Dave Acosta was killed in a Utah mountain biking crash last week.

Beloit, Wisconsin’s Bike Elves program has refurbished and given away 5,380 bicycles over the last nine years, after being founded by a man suffering from early onset Alzheimer’s.

An Illinois driver is being held on $1 million bail for reckless homicide after killing one bike rider and critically injuring another while fleeing from police.

Minnesota has found a used for abandoned mine pits by converting them to 30 miles of mountain bike trails.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A well-known Memphis minister died after being taken off life support following a bicycling collision last week.

The worldwide bike boom continues, as Boston bike shops are running out of bicycles.

Now that’s more like it. The New York Times offers tips on how to stay safe on mass transit — and includes bikeshare as a recommended alternative.

Drive-in movies are popping up all over New York; bike-in movies, not so much.

A New York novelist says riding through the pandemic has changed her perspective of the city.

 

International

Road.cc previews the bike tech trends for next year.

Rapha was justifiably criticized for water bottles printed with a message that could lead to eating disorders if anyone actually followed it.

After a London cabbie posted photos of Dutch parents riding their kids to school on cargo bikes, sarcastically asking if that’s really the kind of morning school run people want to see, the public responded with a resounding “Yes.”

A Croatian expat living in London says helmets, Lycra and flashing lights have become part of his new reality exploring the city by bike in the wake of the coronavirus lockdown.

Five Northern England bicycle trails to add to your bike bucket list. Unless maybe you’d rather combine beer and bikes on five trails surrounding Prague in the Czech Republic. I’ll take both, thank you. And they make some pretty decent beer in the UK, too.

The Irish Times recounts 12 reasons to start riding a bike, almost all of which apply equally well on this side of the Atlantic.

Take a nearly 1,250 mile ride over trees and beneath the water on the trails of the Belgian home of stinky cheese.

Bicyclists have been unofficially banned from the highways of Jalandhar, India, even though it’s legal to ride there; despite the law, riders are being told to stay off the roads following the death of a bike rider.

A Philippines foundation is changing lives one bicycle at a time by donating mountain bikes to people struggling to hold onto their jobs in the face of the pandemic.

Red Bull Australia picks their ten favorite gravel bike shoes, as well as eleven cycling jerseys that apparently don’t care where you wear them.

Competitive Cycling

Dutch cyclist Ellen Van Dijk won the Strade Bianche gravel race on a bike borrowed from a teammate, after her Trek-Segafredo team was struck by thieves the night before the race. Meanwhile, Wout van Aert won on the men’s side.

Former Tour de France winner Vincenzo Nibali suffered an injured hand in the Strade Bianche, just one of the 124 cyclists who abandoned the race in 104° temperatures out of the 166 who started; only 45 cyclists finished the women’s race.

 

Finally…

High-end bike options for people who have more dollars than sense, and are willing to part with a lot of the former.

And don’t dare ride a whole six miles below the speed limit after lunch with you mom.

………

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

Russia laps LA’s climate mayor, equity and opportunity on LA streets, and LADOT’s Reynolds used illegal encrypted app

How embarrassing.

Moscow — yes, the one in Russia — is building bike lanes and bicycle lights along the entire Garden Ring road circling the city.

Which means that Los Angeles, home to the current world climate mayor, is getting lapped by the former Soviet Union.

Which doesn’t exactly have a reputation for being eco-friendly.

Or accommodating people on bicycles.

Then again, neither does LA.

Photo by Julius Silver from Pexels.

………

A Thursday afternoon webinar invites you to reconsider LA’s auto-centric streets can work for everyone; RSVP here.

Thanks to Keith Johnson for the heads-up.

……..

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

An Oregon bike rider was intentionally doored and threatened with a gun after chasing a pair of men in a pickup who yelled a “derogatory statement” at him as he was participating in a demonstration; police arrested the suspects several blocks later.

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

English Premier League soccer star Michail Antonio is looking for the bike rider who slashed a tire on his Mercedes SUV while it was parked on a London street, for no apparent reason.

………

Local

LADOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds has been using the Signal encrypted app to discuss the city’s data collection program for dockless scooters in apparent violation of state law, which requires the preservation of all city records and communications.

 

State

Newport Beach’s popular 10.5 mile Back Bay Drive will be closed until 4 pm on weekdays to repair damage from a rock slide.

No surprise here, as wealthy La Jolla rises up against San Diego’s Complete Communities plan to increase density near transit to improve mobility and provide more “places to walk, bike, relax and play.”

The hundreds of bike riders who took part in Santa Barbara’s annual rideout on Saturday weren’t wearing face masks or practicing social distancing. So let’s hope the experts are right about the coronavirus not spreading efficiently outdoors.

Fresno considers a seven-mile protected bike lane connecting downtown with the San Joaquin River parkway.

 

National

Bikemaker Lennard Zinn ponders how we can keep this bike boom going, after the ’70s bike boom fizzled out; he suggests helping friends get their bike roadworthy and pointing them to safe riding routes.

Pez Cycling News examines the evolution of bike helmets, while Forbes suggests the best bike helmets for every type of rider. Hint: The best bike helmet is the one you’ll actually wear.

A Utah bike rider experiences an online backlash firsthand, as Redditors question how a 265-pound man could ride 123 miles with 3,268 feet of climbing while averaging 18.5 mph. Because evidently, only skinny people ride bikes. Or are good at it. Right?

The pandemic has resulted in a major drop in bicycle collisions, at least in Wisconsin, where bike-involved crashes dropped 46% statewide.

Streetsblog Chicago examines how nonprofit community bike shops are coping with the pandemic, which is limiting their hours and incomes during what would otherwise be boom times.

Good question. A Florida columnist wonders whether more bike riders on the roads will mean more conflict or courtesy.

 

International

London authorities are urging a hit-and-run bicyclist to come forward after the 72-year old man he collided with passed away a week following the crash.

Gordon Ramsey tells the British coast guard to stick to the coast, and leave him and his “massive” 62-mile pandemic lockdown bike rides alone.

A third of Scottish drivers don’t give bike riders enough room on the road, while 80% find it frustrating to pass someone on a bike.

He gets it. Ireland’s transport minister rejects calls for a mandatory helmet law, citing international evidence showing it could lead to a drop in bicycling rates.

Germany isn’t just doing things right when it comes to the pandemic; the country also reached a 60-year low in traffic fatalities, despite a record high in traffic collisions. However, German bicycling deaths are up, climbing 16.8% over the past decade.

 

Competitive Cycling

French Pro Julian Alaphilippe will defend his titles in the rescheduled Strade Bianche and Milano-Sanremo spring classics next month.

Dutch cyclist Mathieu van der Poel is looking forward to racing on the famed cobblestones of Paris-Roubaix for the first time, after the spring classic was rescheduled for October.

Gilbert, Arizona native Christina Birch was officially named to the US Track Cycling Long Team for the Tokyo Olympics. Assuming they actually happen next year.

Cyclist celebrates the history of the yellow jersey.

CyclingTips takes a ride up the the Col de la Loze, the highest point on this year’s Tour de France — again, assuming it happens — and the fourth highest climb in the French Alps.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to use a crash scene photo to call for helmet use, maybe mention whether the victim had one. If you’re stuck at home during the pandemic, just build your own freestyle course in the backyard.

And as long as you’re stuck at home, teach your grandkids how to ride a bike.

All of them.

………

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

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