Tag Archive for Fountain Ave

New book says accidents aren’t accidents, WeHo considers protected bike lanes, and keeping deadly drivers on the road

She gets it.

The New York Times’ Peter Coy talks with journalist Jessie Singer about her new book, which concludes that there are no accidents, just events that could have been prevented.

And that too often, it’s the marginalized members of society who pay the price.

On the other hand, Coy clearly doesn’t get it.

Coy: …Anyway, is it possible to go too far in preventing accidents? It wouldn’t make sense to limit cars to going 30 miles per hour.

Singer: It is our moral and ethical imperative to do everything in our power to protect human life. When people talk about the nanny state, what they’re doing is making excuses for deeply preventable, deeply racialized and class-divided causes of death.

If we look at places that do everything in their power to protect human life, from Sweden’s Vision Zero traffic safety policies to Portugal’s harm-reduction overdose prevention policies, we see that countless lives could be saved just by putting people first.

Never mind that cities across the world have successfully reduced the frequency and severity of collisions by cutting speed limits below 30 mph.

Let alone the worldwide 20 Is Plenty movement to reduce the risk of collisions as well as the risk of death or serious injury by slowing drivers to 20 mph in populated areas.

So yeah, it does make sense to lower speed limits to 30 mph, or less. Because the convenience of drivers should never outweigh the lives and safety of those around them.

Graphic by tomexploresla.

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There may be hope for WeHo bike riders yet.

Streets For All reports that a pair of studies could result in protected bike lanes on Fountain and Santa Monica Blvd, respectively.

https://twitter.com/streetsforall/status/1490794943794716674

Either one would be a game changer.

Together, they would provide the first safe bicycling route through the city, from La Brea in the east to Beverly Hills in the west.

Let’s just hope they both get the go ahead.

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Today’s common theme is the lenient courts and government officials who inexplicably keep dangerous drivers on the road until they kill someone.

Like the heartbreaking news from New York, where a 99-year old Holocaust survivor was killed by a reckless driver with a long record of speeding and red light violations.

Or the Florida hit-and-run driver who killed a 70-year old man riding a bicycle, and was somehow still on the road despite five previous DUIs; he was caught after two days, which presumably gave him plenty of time to sober up before he was busted.

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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 candidate for San Diego city council says the city’s new bike lanes are death traps that go unused for weeks at a time.

A Florida city puts the entire obligation for safety on bike riders by requiring lights and bells on their bikes. But there’s not a bike bell made that will do a damn thing to stop aggressive, speeding and/or distracted drivers.

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Local

Work is proceeding on an $8.1 million, 2.8-mile extension of Pasadena’s Greenway Trail. Correction: Make that Whittier, not Pasadena. Thanks to Joe Linton for keeping me honest.

 

State

A new bill from bike-riding La Cañada Flintridge State Senator Anthony Portantino would require cities and counties to identify a High Injury Network of their most dangerous roads and intersections, and create a plan to correct them within 15 years. But do we really want to let them keep killing people for another 15 years? Cut the timeline to five years, and I’m all in.

Streetsblog offers more details on SB 922, which would permanently exempt bike lanes and other environmentally friendly transportation projects from lengthy environmental reviews. Which are too often abused to halt or delay bike, pedestrian and transit projects that would benefit the environment.

San Diego belatedly begins work on building a separated bikeway along Pershing Drive through Balboa Park, after a bike commuter and a scooter rider were killed on the existing bike lanes last year. Meanwhile, the family of noted architect Laura Shinn, who was killed by an allegedly stoned driver while riding her bike to work, have filed suit against the city. Considering the years-long delay in improving the bike lane, they might as well just back up the Brinks truck. Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up.

Bad news from Livermore, where a woman was killed when her bike was hit head-on by a driver after they both crossed the yellow line while rounding a curve from opposite directions.

A Pittsburgh CA man was sentenced to 28 years to life behind bars for fatally shooting man as he was stealing the victim’s bike; the shooter bizarrely claimed self-defense, claiming he felt threatened by the victim’s attempt to get his bike back. Thanks again to Phillip Young.

 

National

In a question that answers itself, Streetsblog asks if America needs a Mobility Bill of Rights, after a group of Washington nonprofits author one for their state. Los Angeles bike advocates created a Cyclists’ Bill of Rights over a dozen years ago, which was sort-of approved by the city council, until it wasn’t, and then promptly forgotten, which was probably the city’s intent all along.

Popular Science says don’t buy an ebike, just build one using the bike in your garage.

Cycling Utah talks with our own Peter Flax, who offers a “look at racial justice issues through the lens of his deep and nuanced understanding of the various facets of bike culture.”

The Boston Globe questions whether the city will keep up the pandemic momentum that spurred bike lane creation throughout the area. Unlike Los Angeles, which squandered the opportunity presented by light pandemic traffic by failing to build a single new bike lane that wasn’t already in the works.

A Brooklyn councilmember tries, and fails, to successfully navigate a street without leaving the bike lane, missing out on the $100 challenge due to an array of drivers blocking it.

DC intends to install another ten miles of protected bike lanes this year, adding to its existing 24-mile network, with another 20 miles coming by 2024.

 

International

Worst dad of the year award goes to British father stole his daughter’s bicycle from the trunk of her car to teach her a lesson.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a careless driver walked without a single day behind bars for killing a man riding his bicycle; she was sentenced to 280 hours of community service and lost her license for a lousy 14 months.

A study from Belgian ebike brand Cowboy confirms previous studies showing ebikes offer the same fitness benefits as regular bicycles.

Amsterdam wants to give you over $2,200 for ideas on how to improve bicycle safety in the city.

 

Competitive Cycling

At last, some good news about two-time Grand Tour winner Egan Bernal, who was released from the hospital two weeks after a training crash left him critically injured; however, he still faces a very long recovery.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could come wrapped in rice and potatoes. How about an ebike can actually fly?

And ebike riders of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your chains.

No, literally.

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

WeHo proposes protected bike lanes on Santa Monica and Fountain, and witness looks for West LA bike crash victim

This could be a literal life saver.

West Hollywood is considering a motion to study how protected bike lanes can be installed on Santa Monica Blvd and Fountain Avenue at next Monday’s meeting.

As Streets For All notes, WeHo already has bike lanes on Santa Monica from Doheny to La Cienega. Even if you have to dodge drivers double parked in the bike lane, or pulling in or out of parking spaces.

On the other hand, bicyclists had to settle for sharrows on Fountain, which isn’t exactly the most comfortable place to ride, thanks to impatient, aggressive and often speeding drivers.

Well-designed protected bike lanes could make a big difference on both, providing safe and bikeable routes through the city, as well as better comfort and livability for everyone along the streets.

Streets For All explains how you can support the motion.

HOW YOU CAN HELP IN TWO STEPS

FIRST…

Send an email right now (by 4p on Monday at the latest) to West Hollywood City Council. We’ve pre-filled the text to make it super easy, but the more personal you can make it, the better.

EMAIL PUBLIC COMMENT

SECOND…

Register to speak at the West Hollywood City Council Meeting this Monday, Mar 1 at 530PM by emailing the clerk saying that you wish to speak and then calling in at 530pm on Monday:

Dial 669-900-6833
Meeting ID 946 3099 4369 #

REGISTER TO SPEAK

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A Nextdoor user is looking for the bike rider who got hit by a driver at Olympic and Bentley in West LA on Wednesday.

Nextdoor isn’t the easiest platform to respond to someone if you don’t live in the same neighborhood.

But if you know the person they’re looking for, I can pass his or her contact information on the the person who sent this to me, and hopefully they can pass it on to them.

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Calbike urges you to sign the petition calling on California to provide rebates for ebike purchases. And so do I.

The nonprofit organization is also looking for a part-time temporary Policy Associate.

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Little known fact, courtesy of Zachary Rynew — Los Angeles is both one of the lowest and one of the highest cities in the US, thanks to Mt. Lukens, the city’s highest point.

Which is where Gravel Bike California grinds this week.

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I rode on a low curb once. Does that count?

https://twitter.com/RexChapman/status/1364958258914594828?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1364963776559255571%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es2_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fbikinginla.com%2Fwp-admin%2Fpost-new.php

Thanks to Mike Burk for the link.

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There are none so blind as drivers who refuse to see the light.

https://twitter.com/abikeist/status/1365142951211331584

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

A Rancho Cucamonga man is behind bars for stealing a man’s cellphone at knifepoint after rear-ending the victim’s car on his bike. The story doesn’t mention it, but it crash that started it all sounds like an insurance scam.

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Local

Yahoo picks up a paywalled story from AFP Relax that says riding a bike in Los Angeles isn’t always easy — and sometimes dangerous — but there’s hope. A faint hope, at this point. But still.

 

State

Los Alamitos is reaching out to the nearby unincorporated community of Rossmoor in an attempt to integrate plans to make the area more walkable and bike friendly.

San Diego e-scooter riders can get a buck of their rental by parking it in a scooter corral.

The rich get richer, as San Francisco bike riders get two more protected bike lanes.

If you had a bike stolen from your San Francisco garage recently, the SFPD may have good news for you.

Anyone in the Wine Country who’s in the market for a kid’s bike should head up to Santa Rosa’s nonprofit Community Bikes, which is blowing out an overabundance of refurbished bicycles at a fraction of their value.

 

National

They get it. Slate calls for ebikes for everyone, asking why shouldn’t the feds help Americans get one?

The Southern Nevada Bicycle Coalition calls attention to the state’s three-foot passing law, reminding drivers they have to change lanes to pass a bike rider if they can’t give at least three feet. And yes, that’s a hell of a lot better than California’s law, which allows drivers to pass at less than three feet if they slow down to some unspecified safer speed.

Boulder CO police bust a machete-wielding man who tried to make his escape on a stolen bicycle after he was caught burglarizing a house.

Mountain bikers could soon get another 240 acres of trails just outside Dallas in Denton, Texas. Which is also home to the world’s first and only self-proclaimed nuclear polka band.

An Ohio barber is asking for donations of kid’s bikes, hoping to give away a hundred new bikes and helmets to get children off their screens for awhile.

A member of New York’s Major Taylor Iron Riders bike club describes how bicycling helped her bounce back following a devastating diagnosis of Sjögren’s Syndrome.

Support is growing to keep cars off Philadelphia’s waterfront MLK Drive permanently, which has been closed to cars during the pandemic.

Delaware bike riders want the state law allowing bicyclists to treat stop signs as yields to be made permanent, rather than expiring this year as currently written.

There’s something seriously wrong when a 73-year old Florida woman is thrown more than half the length of a football field by a drunk driver, suffering life-threatening injuries just because she had the misfortune of sharing a street with the jerk.

 

International

Pink Bike asks whether bicycles are actually getting less expensive, with better bikes available for under three grand — or two grand for hardtails.

Road.cc considers the best second bike for roadies.

A London paper offers a guide to riding safely and confidently in the city in order to avoid using public transport while the pandemic rages on.

A British site says forget the SUV and get a folding e-cargo bike; they like this one from Rad Power for around $1,500.

They get it. The UK’s iNews looks at the true cost of bike theft, which goes far beyond the bike’s price.

An Indian paper remembers a noted poet and Hindu priest who passed away on Thursday, known for riding his bike everywhere in the city of Thiruvananthapuram.

 

Competitive Cycling

Tragic news from Italy, where a promising 17-year old member of former Tour de France, Giro and Vuelta winner Vincenzo Nibali’s cycling team was killed in a collision while on a training ride.

Cycling News highlights ’84 Olympic legend Nelson Vails, describing him as “the Harlem kid who became America’s first Black Olympic medalist.” Every February, news outlets across the US remember Major Taylor for Black History Month as America’s first Black cycling champ, forgetting there’s a straight line connecting him with Vails, and LA-based former national champs Rahsaan Bahati and Justin Williams.

Taking a page from what Americans call soccer and the rest of the world calls football, cyclists who commit safety violations can now get a red card for a third offense.

Bad news for the competition, as 38-year old Dutch pro Annemiek van Vleuten says she’s feeling faster than ever, which is saying a lot for the four-time world champ.

The Queen of Pain, aka endurance cyclist Rebecca Rush, recalls the 350-mile 2020 Iditarod Trail Invitational, describing it as the race that nearly broke her.

 

Finally…

Anyone can do a few laps at the velodrome; not many can do 90 laps despite suffering from a variety of mental, physical and genetic disabilities.

And you know things are bad when West Covina sells its own streets.

To itself.

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Thanks to Margaret for her generous donation to help keep SoCal’s best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day. Any contribution is always welcome and appreciated!

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

Morning Links: Brake-checking driver harasses cyclist; curb-jumping drivers don’t get Redondo bike lanes

The problem with sharrows is that they put you right in the path of drivers.

Impatient, road-raging and brake-checking drivers, at times, as cyclist Michael Schinderling learned out the hard way while riding on Fountain Ave in Los Angeles.

The driver first honks, then repeatedly slams on his brakes in front of him. Even though Schinderling was riding exactly where the sharrows indicate he should be.

The big problem with LA’s cyclist anti-harassment ordinance is that it’s so hard to get proof that a driver deliberately antagonized a rider.

But this looks like an open-and-shut case.

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Caught on video: Those new Redondo Beach separated bike lanes seem to be working well. Except for curb-jumping drivers who can’t seem to figure out why the traffic lane is green and there are so many bikes in it.

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American cyclist Tyler Farrar is heading back to the Tour de France as part of the first African-based pro team, while Tejay van Garderen is older and wiser and says he’s ready for the challenge. The Wall Street Journal asks why no Latin American rider has won the Tour de France, as Nairo Quintana attempts to become the first.

Meanwhile, former pro team leader Bjarne Riis chose to ignore doping by his riders. Or more likely, tacitly encouraged it, if not openly.

Cycling Weekly looks at the best bike tans in the peloton. Dutch police evidently feel the best way to get a new collective bargaining agreement is to delay riders in the Tour de France, thus ensuring it won’t besmirch their country again.

And sad news from the UK, as a British bike racer was killed in a collision with another rider last weekend.

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Local

The LA-area’s Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) wants your input on a new regional transportation plan.

State Assemblymember Richard Bloom and two Westside councilmembers say Metro is going the wrong way with plans for a bike share system that will be incompatible with systems opening soon in Long Beach and Santa Monica, and as well as systems planned for West Hollywood, UCLA and yes, the Biking Black Hole of Beverly Hills.

San Gabriel gets a new bike lane on Las Tunas Drive.

Santa Clarita opens a new 1.5 mile stretch of the Santa Clarita River Trail, including a bike bridge over the Los Angeles aqueduct.

A Long Beach councilwoman will host a bike safety program for kids from 9 to 17 years old next week.

The second Tour de Laemmle will roll on July 19th, as Greg Laemmle invites you to ride with him on all or part of a 125+ mile tour of all the Laemmle Theaters.

 

State

Santa Ana conducts a reverse road diet, forcing long-time residents out of their homes to make room for an added lane and bike lanes on Warner Ave, as the OC Register says evicted residents will have to be made whole.

A bike rider suffered major injuries in a collision with a pickup in Anaheim on Tuesday; a comment on Bike Forums suggests the victim was riding in the crosswalk over the onramp to the 57. Thanks to Mike Wilkinson for the link.

Big oops from the Bay, as San Francisco retracts a report that a new bikeway saw a 651% jump in bike traffic; the actual figures ranged from a 12% to 62% increase depending on time of day. You’d think someone would have noticed that those numbers seemed just a tad high before sending out the press release.

Oakland is planning to trade traffic lanes for bike lanes, with twelve road diets proposed for the next three years; needless to say, bike riders are thrilled while motorists are worried. Maybe Oakland could explain how the process works to Santa Ana.

The Marin tech exec who viciously beat a driver who clipped him with his mirror has been found guilty of felony battery and misdemeanor assault; he faces up to four years in prison. Seriously, never resort to violence. Period.

 

National

Tragic news from Las Vegas, as a 16-year old boy riding without ID was hit by a car last week; he died the next day before family members learned about the wreck and he could be identified.

A Utah driver has plead guilty to intentionally running down a bike rider with whom he had an adversarial relationship.

Evidently, the penalty in Texas for riding a bike without lights is to get Tased, then beaten after falling off your bike. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

An Iowa man is back on his bike six months after losing a leg to complications from diabetes; he’ll be riding in the Tour de Cure this weekend.

Needless to say, Chicago business owners are worried about the loss of parking with the city’s first curb-protected bike lane; Chicagoist asks if it will be good for business. Bikes are usually good for business. And there’s something seriously wrong if your customers won’t walk a few extra feet to do business with you.

A Maine driver is accused of intentionally running down a 10-year old boy on a bike over a dispute with the kid’s mother; unbelievably, the man was released on just $1,000 bail — despite using his car as a weapon to attack a child.

Just days after an LA bike rider was attacked with a machete in an attempted bike theft, a machete-swinging road-raging PA teenager attacked a cyclist and his fiancée, who used his bike to defend themselves.

The Baltimore Sun says bike helmets aren’t ugly anymore, while The Week offers a look at six bike helmets of the future. Can we just get one that actually protects against concussions and other serious brain injuries in real world collisions?

A Georgia website offers advice on how to get a red light to change for your bike.

A cyclist rides 1,400 miles up the East Coast while towing his dog and a cargo trailer.

 

International

Here we go again, as a Facebook page devoted to shaming law-breaking Victoria BC cyclists devolves into a hotbed of anti-bike hatred.

Two Edmonton councilors call for ripping out bike lanes on three streets, calling them unsafe and underutilized.

Cyclists halt London traffic to protest the death of yet another young woman killed by a truck while riding to work. Although not everyone was willing to show a little respect.

Caught on video: The UK’s “vigilante cyclist” catches a woman texting behind the wheel with two kids in her car. I see something similar almost every time I ride. Like a woman who was steering with her knees as she texted with her kids in the back seat.

A pair of Good Samaritans pitch in to replace a British nurse’s bike after it was stolen from outside her apartment.

A Brit bike rider gets a year in jail for killing a 73-year old woman in a collision while riding a brakeless BMX.

Switzerland is telling e-bike riders to slow down, following a rise in single-vehicle bike wrecks due to riders misjudging their speed and stopping times.

India gets its first cycling café in the “Detroit of India” even though the city doesn’t have a single bike lane.

Australian bike riders may soon be allowed to ride on sidewalks in the state of Victoria, but could face on-the-spot fines for using a handheld phone. So what happens if they can’t pay? Are they arrested on the spot?

“Selfish” Aussie cyclists are accused of illegally riding in high-speed bus-only lanes to avoid slower bikeways.

Don’t ride under the influence in Japan, don’t report a falling down drunk bike rider to the police, and don’t ride with groceries on your handlebars.

 

Finally…

It takes a bold thief to ride off with a bike cop’s bike as she stood just a few feet away. Caught on video: an Ohio bird defends his territory against a cyclist. Or maybe he just doesn’t like they guy’s taste in bike helmets.

And a new study from the University of Duh confirms that marijuana use impairs driving. Next up, a study confirming that it gives people the munchies, too.

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I need to find a better name for the Morning Links, since I seem to be temporally challenged these days. Chain Links is too cutsie, while Bike News seems a little dull.

Any suggestions?

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