Tag Archive for kindhearted people

Morning Links: Vote for Loraine Lundquist in CD12 today, more kindhearted people, and kick leads to shove in the UK

It’s Election Day in the Northwest San Fernando Valley, and there’s a stark differences between candidates.

As in, one is very bike, transit and environment friendly, and endorsed by both the LA Times and Bike the Vote LA.

And one isn’t. Which is pretty much all you need to know about the race.

So if you live in LA’s 12th Council District, get your ass out there and cast a vote for Loraine Lundquist today.

Because this one is too important to sit out.

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Kindhearted people seems to be the theme of the week.

More kindhearted cops, this time from my hometown, where police dug deep to buy a young couple a new tandem bike, after the one they got as wedding present was stolen, but too damaged to fix once police recovered it.

The Chicago Bears carried on a 15-year tradition by giving bicycles they used to get around during training camp to veterans and teenagers in need.

A London woman is looking for the kindhearted man who bought her a bicycle when she was a child refugee in the Netherlands back in the ’90s.

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When kick leads to shove. And kick. And shove…

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Local

No surprise here, as traffic collisions increased in the first full month after a road diet was installed on Broadway in Long Beach. Anytime there’s a major change to a roadway, you can expect an initial increase in collisions as drivers adjust to the new configuration. Which is why with most pilot projects, the data is only considered meaningful after they’ve been in place for awhile.

 

State

A San Diego woman somehow blames the bike riders she doesn’t see using bike lanes for the actions of dangerous drivers.

He gets it. San Jose traffic columnist Mr. Roadshow says delivery drivers and gardeners aren’t allowed to park in bike lanes with no parking signs. But the best solution is to install more protected bike lanes.

A San Francisco bicyclist joins up with a high-powered micromobility crowd on a scooter that tops out around 50 mph, and decides he’ll stick with human power.

Instead of fixing the roads, Sonoma County is appealing a court verdict awarding $1.9 million to a woman who suffered serious injuries when her bike hit a pothole, arguing it was her responsibility to avoid it. But it was their responsibility to ensure it wasn’t there in the first place.

 

National

Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss says we need more bike-friendly airports, saying riding to your flight is the ultimate in smugness.

Outside considers ten unusual bikepacking items that are worth the extra weight.

An Alaska blogger says you’re more likely to be killed riding your bike than in a mass shooting or by a serial killer, pointing out “there’s an El Paso every 11 days, a Dayton every five days. And no one gives a shit.” Ouch.

Let’s not get too specific, guys. A pedestrian in Salt Lake City suffered a serious head injury when she collided with someone on a bicycle. Or she could have been the person on the bike, and there may have been a car involved. Or not.

A Houston thief decided to trade down, leaving his bicycle behind when he stole a Chevy Tahoe after the driver left it running with the keys inside.

Life is cheap in Missouri, where man killed a bike rider while doing 93 mph in a 35 mph zone. And somehow ends up with a whole 100 days in jail.

Needless to say, it didn’t take long for the pro-Pence bikelash to roll in after America’s favorite seven-time ex-Tour de France champ claimed he blew the doors off the Vice President on a Nantucket bike path. Evidently, they failed to notice Lance’s tongue planted firmly in cheek.

A Connecticut bike rider was injured in collision with a bear; the scofflaw Smokey wannabe was reportedly wearing dark colors, had no license or insurance, and fled the scene after the crash. Seriously, bears should be required to wear hi-viz, be tested, licensed and insured, and wear numbered plates on their massive butts if they’re going to use our roads.

New York police “plan to throw the book” at an 18-year old muscle car driver who sped through a red light, causing the crash that killed a man on his bike who was waiting at the stop light. Unfortunately, given the limits of New York traffic laws, it may be a very small book. The driver’s defense should be that he was driving his Dodge Charger exactly the way Dodge says he should in their commercials.

Faded paint means some NYC bike lanes exist only on paper and in memory.

A New York project is preparing bike riders to act as bicycling rescue workers in the event of an emergency.

Great idea. A new Pittsburgh program encourages businesses to keep bike tools and patches on hand, and let bike riders use the restrooms and fill up their water bottles.

A Charleston SC columnist says bicyclists tick him off when he drives, but “you’d have to be President Donald Trump to be insensitive to the human carnage that’s taking place.”

 

International

A 30-year old BMX rider was killed when he fell off the Vancouver sea wall while attempting a stunt.

Seriously? A British jury let a truck driver off the hook for killing a bike rider in the equivalent of a right hook — even though the victim was doing everything right, and captured the crash on his bike cam.

Lots of people ride the length of Great Britain these days. But not many do it riding Penny Farthings.

An Irish paper says forget the expression that bicycling is the new golf; bike riding rates now exceed golf participation by more than two-to-one on the Emerald Isle. And it doesn’t have to be expensive.

A new $1,500 aluminum bike from a Swedish bikemaker is being made from old Nespresso coffee pods to send a message about the need to recycle.

A well-meaning New Zealand woman apparently makes a habit of telling bicyclists to wear their helmets because a family friend died while skitching — in 1929, when bike helmets didn’t exist. Although skitching was just as dangerous and foolish as it is now.

A 67-year old Japanese bike rider was killed, and a 27-year old man seriously injured, when a salmon driver slammed into their bicycles on a Tokyo highway; once police found the driver, he said he had no memory of the crash.

 

Competitive Cycling

Britain’s Geraint Thomas and France’s Julian Alaphilippe are the top names competing in this month’s four-day Deutschland Tour. Raise your hand if you didn’t even know there was a Deutschland Tour. And yes, my hand’s pointing to the sky. 

Italian cyclist Domenico Pozzovivo will miss the Vuelta after he became the latest pro cyclist to be hit by a driver while training, breaking his arm and leg. 

 

Finally…

If you’re going to steal a family’s bicycle after delivering their Amazon order, try to make sure you’re not on candid camera. Secure your bike with a 14-pound, angle-grinder proof kettle bell.

And yes, if the law says you have to wear a helmet, you have to wear a helmet.

Even if you’re the president of Russia.

 

Morning Links: Victorville bike rider critical after crash, LA bike lanes pay for themselves, and Clarkson says FU bikes

Let’s start with bad news from Victorville.

A man riding a bicycle suffered life-threatening injuries when he reportedly tried and failed to beat traffic on a busy highway.

The CHP reported it as a fatal crash; however, San Bernardino sheriff’s deputies were unable to confirm a fatal Victorville crash over the weekend.

We’ll let you know when and if we get more information.

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Someone should remind our elected officials here in Los Angeles that spending on bicycling infrastructure makes sense.

And dollars.

Lots of dollars.

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A letter writer in the Los Angeles Times says a Copenhagen-like level of bicycling may not be practical in the short term, but building a backbone network of bike lanes crossing the city would get many people out on their bikes.

Which, oddly, is exactly what the city’s bike plan calls for.

Meanwhile, another letter writer says Copenhagen is a great place for bicycling because it’s relatively flat.

Unlike Los Angeles, which is… uh, relatively flat.

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As long as we’re on the subject of letters, an Oregon letter writer says —

  • Bicyclists need to take more responsibility.
  • There’s no proof bicycling infrastructure benefits anyone but people on bikes;
  • Bike riders use senior citizens as “wrinkly, silver-haired pylons on the imaginary racetrack of the handle-barbarians;”
  • Bicycling can never be made entirely safe, so riding on city streets will always be a gamble;
  • Oregon’s governor is rewarding the lawless behavior of bicyclists by allowing them to “wander through red lights, stop signs and ignore yield signs while challenging vehicles to the same space.”
  • Bike riders need to be taxed, tested and licensed. And ticketed.

Damn, that’s a lot to unpack.

But let’s give it a try.

First of all, yes, bike riders — and everyone else — need to assume more responsibility.

I myself recently assumed responsibility for disappearing Jimmy Hoffa, snatching the Lindberg baby, and trading Babe Ruth to the Yankees.

Second, there is plenty of evidence that bike lanes improve safety for everyone.

Third, anyone who endangers pedestrians, especially older, younger or disabled pedestrians, is a complete and total jerk. And probably drives exactly the same way. Never mind that a lot of the people on bikes fit in that nebulous senior category themselves.

Fourth, saying the streets will never be safe for bike riders is just another way of saying motorists are incapable of driving safely. But yes, there are ways to improve safety, even in intersections.

Fifth, the version of the Idaho Stop Law that was recently approved in Oregon only allows bicyclists to treat stop signs as yields, while still requiring bike riders to stop and wait at red lights. And it passed both houses of the legislature.

Finally, most bike riders already hold a drivers license, so they have been tested and licensed. And bike riders are subject to traffic fines, just like drivers, in every state of the union.

And as we’ve already seen, testing and licensing drivers hasn’t exactly inspired good behavior, either.

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Talking with a driving website, Jeremy Clarkson, co-host of the Amazon Prime series The Grand Tour, and former host of Britain’s Top Gear, laced into bicycles and the people who ride them in an expletive-filled diatribe.

He particularly goes off on plans for a bike lane on the street next to where he’s sitting, insisting no one rides there, as numerous bike riders glide past behind him.

And he insists you’ll get a disease if you ride a bus.

No, really.

Although evidently, he’s including himself in that big FU to bikes and the people who ride them.

Thanks to F. Lehnerz for the heads-up.

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Lots of generous people in today’s news, starting right here at home.

Unfortunately, that’s all the information we have now. I’ve put in a request for more information, and will let you know if we learn more.

Meanwhile, thanks to the bighearted people the Los Angeles Trial Lawyers’ Charities, 13 special needs kids and two adults now have new adaptive bicycles.

A Colorado Springs CO paramedic and firefighters teamed with a local nonprofit to give a boy a new bike after his was stolen.

Milwaukee residents help a little girl raise enough money in half an hour by selling lemonade to replace her mother’s stolen bike — including two people who paid $100 for their $1 drinks.

Kindhearted firefighters replaced a 10-year old Ohio girls’ bicycle and helmet, just two hours after her brand new bicycle was destroyed by a hit-and-run driver.

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More proof that bikes can go where cars can’t.

https://twitter.com/HeartScotNews/status/1159196732279992321?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1159196732279992321&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2F265382-video-edinburgh-cyclist-rides-past-cars-stranded-deep-flood-water

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This is who we share the roads with. Legally or otherwise.

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Local

LA-based ex-pro Phil Gaimon goes on KCBS-2 to discuss his Phil’s Cookie Fondo coming this October in Malibu; the ride benefits Chef’s Cycle and No Kid Hungry to help ensure every child has something to eat.

Sixty-two-year old Claremont resident Sandra Marie Wicksted faces up to 17 years behind bars after pleading not guilty to murder for intentionally plowing her car into bike rider Leslie Pray, as well as four counts of attempted murder for trying to do it to other people, as well.

The Hoff is one of us, as David Hasselhoff goes mountain biking in Calabasas with his new Welsh wife.

 

State

A 55-year old San Diego man suffered a serious leg injury when he was hit by a driver while riding his bike, after allegedly failing to yield.

San Diego councilmember and candidate for mayor Barbara Bryophytes tries to stuff the genie back in the bottle, calling fo a moratorium, if not an outright ban, on e-scooters.

The Encinitas bikeshare system has been put on hold thanks to Trump’s trade war with China.

A young boy and his father were rescued from the base of a San Francisco cliff after the child somehow rode his bike off the edge and his father went down to help him.

Results of San Francisco’s pilot study on the city’s Valencia Street protected bike lane shows a dramatic reduction in risk to bike riders, including a 95% decrease in mid-block interactions with drivers, where dooring had previously posed a substantial risk.

Time says higher prices for Jump bikes and e-scooters are threatening the micromobility revolution in the Bay Area.

 

National

Far from being cheating, a new study shows ebike riders actually get more exercise than regular bike riders.

An Oregon appeals court says yes, bicyclists can legally pass vehicles on the right, after a bike rider was cited by a cop for unsafe passing after he was right hooked by a bus driver who’d just passed him.

More on the innovative new bike lights developed by students at the University of Colorado that bathe the user in rainbow-hued lights, as well as illuminating the road.

An ex-Denver radio host lists of a who’s who of local bike advocates as he complains about their “activist agenda,” while spouting his own anti-bike lane one. But he does claim that he’s polite to each and every one he meets, even “the obnoxious ones.”

Beyonce fans take a bike ride in Houston’s blistering heat to visit Queen Bey’s favorite haunts.

It was nice while it lasted. In the two years since St. Joseph MO opened a free bikeshare system with a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all 40 bicycles have been stolen or destroyed.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a pair of donated adaptive bicycles from a couple of adopted, autistic Kentucky children.

Finishing our Kentucky trifecta, it’s good to be king. Or mayor, anyway. The former mayor of Somerset KY walks with a lousy $100 fine for clipping a 15-year old girl while she was riding in a crosswalk with the right-of-way — then driving off, claiming he didn’t realize he’d hit her bike.

Riding a bike across the country isn’t all that rare anymore. But riding a bike 3,000 miles across the US with serious vision and hearing problems due to a genetic condition, like this Kentucky teacher, is.

Vermont’s governor is one of us, taking to his bike to see what problems bicyclists face in one county, and what they’re working on. That exactly what we should expect of all elected officials.

A New Hampshire bike rider tells drivers not to be nice by waving bicyclists through intersections, and to be predictable, instead.

A Rhode Island chef is beating his addiction to alcohol with the help of his bicycle, riding 100 miles a week and losing 40 pounds in the process.

After a Connecticut bike rider was injured in a crash, police added insult to injury — literally — by giving the victim a stern warning for riding salmon.

A vehicular cyclist in upstate New York repeats the myth that bike lanes make bicyclists less visible and safe, when the fact is, bike lanes have been repeatedly shown to improve safety. And the better the bike lane, the greater the improvement.

Things just keep getting worse in the Big Apple, as the city suffered its 19th bicycling fatality this year when a 52-year old man was collateral damage when a teenage driver ran a red light and smashed into another vehicle. And yes, the crash was captured on video, and no, you don’t really want to see it. Trust me.

As we speculated last weekend, Atlanta appears to lead the nation in scooter deaths, with twice as many this year as any other major American city.

An angry Miami man exited a restaurant, stripped naked and hopped on his bicycle, riding in the buff to a nearby store where he grabbed a pair of shorts and walked out, telling the startled clerk he was paying with his bicycle. Needless to say, he didn’t have any ID on him. Although he does have some great thighs and a definite cyclist’s tan.

 

International

Automakers seem to think the future is in micromobility, as five companies — Volkswagen, Ford, Audi, BMW and GM — explore variations on e-scooters, while Peugeot goes back to its bikemaker roots with a line of ebikes. Just don’t plan to ride them on the medieval cobbles of Bruges.

Evidently, near total hegemony on the streets isn’t enough for some drivers, as one is captured on video driving on a busy bike path in a Vancouver park.

Vancouver brightens the city’s outlook for bicyclists with a series of colorful new bike racks.

After getting hit by someone on a bicycle, an Ontario man says bike riders are too comfortable breaking the law against riding on the sidewalk. The simple fact is, no one rides on the sidewalk if they feel comfortable on the street. So the best way to stop sidewalk riding is to demand safer streets.

No bias here. Police in the UK stopped a 13-year old black kid and demanded the receipt for his bike to prove it was actually his. Because we all carry the receipt for out bikes with us every time we ride. Right?

The mother of a fallen British bike rider calls for requiring bike lights on the sale of every new bicycle.

Trump ex-wife Marla Maples is one of us, riding a bike as she vacations in Spain.

Great photos from a Czech city, as they celebrate the 150th anniversary of the country’s first bike race. Although the first caption, by way of the Chinese press, seems just a tad off.

 

Competitive Cycling

Who says women can’t compete with men? Twenty-four-year old medical student Fiona Kolbinger became the first woman to win the grueling Transcontinental Race, riding across the European continent in 10 days, two hours, and 48 minutes — beating her nearest rival by 11 hours.

A Philippine paper looks at SoCal’s Coryn Rivera and her efforts to make the US cycling team for the 2020 Olympics, even though she could compete as part of the Philippine national team.

If you couldn’t get past the Wall Street Journal’s paywall to read Jason Gay’s profile of South LA’s back-to-back US crit champ Justin Williams and the League of Cycling, a Belizean website offers a synopsis of the piece in honoring the Belizean-American cyclist.

Lance may be officially barred from bike racing, bu that doesn’t mean he can’t gloat about “blowing the doors off” Vice President Mike Pence on a Nantucket bike path.

Forget doping, now you can just cheat on Zwift.

 

Finally…

Don’t just drink your expensive single-use coffee, ride it. Who needs a barber shop when you can just use a bikeshare bike.

And if you’re going to ride your bike carrying a loaded BB gun while high on crack, put a damn light on it.

The bike, not the BB gun.

Or the crack.

 

Morning Links: A little good news, new NoHo Metro Bikes but no Lankershim bike lanes, and anti-bike Redondo official

After recent events, I think we could all use a little good news to start the day.

After an Indiana woman’s bicycle, which was her only form of transportation, was stolen, a pair of kindhearted Indiana bike cops gave her an extra bicycle one of them had at home.

A Maine bike co-op allows new immigrants and low-income residents to earn a bicycle by learning how to refurbish and repair it.

Thanks to a Virginia nonprofit founded by a US Army vet, 21 special needs kids now have new adaptive bicycles to ride.

And hats off to a couple Georgia cops who spotted a 71-year old man riding his bike on a busy highway without any lights or reflectors to get something to eat. So they put his bike in a patrol car, drove him to the restaurant, then went to Walmart to buy safety gear for his bike.

Photo of bike-riding family by Brett Sayles from Pexels.

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On the local front, the good news is Metro Bike has made its first appearance in North Hollywood.

The bad news is, we could have had a safe place to ride them if CD2 Councilmember Paul Krekorian hadn’t blocked plans for a lane reduction and parking-protected bike lanes on Lankershim Blvd.

Krekorian killed the fully funded and shovel ready plan two years ago, bizarrely claiming that the project needed more public outreach.

As if five years of meetings, workshops and pop-up bike lanes isn’t enough.

And someone should tell him we’re still waiting on the additional public outreach and those alternative Lankershim options he promised us.

Or maybe Krekorian is just waiting until he’s termed out of office and it becomes someone else’s problem.

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Nothing like a Redondo Beach official finding a little humor in running your ass over for no apparent reason.

Except maybe people commuting, exercising, recreating or having fun just annoys the crap out of her.

That would be this Recreation & Parks Commission, in case you were wondering.

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This is who we share the roads with.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

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The Green Bay Packers take their traditional bike ride to training camp, borrowing bicycles from little kids, who carry their helmets for them.

Unfortunately for one kid’s bike, the Houston Texans joined them.

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

Someone is shoving people off their bicycles on Portland OR bike paths.

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Local

The LA Bicycle Advisory Committee will meet in Hollywood tonight; unfortunately, the posted agenda here is from December — 2018.

LA City Planning announces that LOS, which measures how many cars can move through a given point, is out, and VMT, or Vehicle Miles Traveled, is in; the latter counts people on bikes and buses, too.

Adam Conover, host of TruTV’s Adam Ruins Everything talks about living carfree in the City of Angels, and how it’s cars that actually ruin everything.

A Frogtown artist bought a small slice of the LA River to give himself a bigger voice in plans to restore it.

The last candidate forum for next week’s special election in LA’s 12th Council District will be held in Chatsworth Wednesday night. You owe it to yourself to be there if you live in CD12. Unless you’ve already decided to vote for Bike the Vote LA and LA Times-approved Loraine Lundquist, in which case you have my permission to stay home tomorrow night.

Los Angeles County puts forth a sustainability plan for a carbon-free county by 2050. Which could be about 30 years too late. Then again, the way things are going on the international front, the long-sought solution to global warming may turn out to be a nuclear winter.

 

State

Camarillo is starting work on a road widening project to add bike lanes on Pleasant Valley Road.

San Diego bike riders turn out to support plans for protected bike lanes on 30th Street; however, some in the area evidently prefer parking spaces to more customers and saving lives.

A San Jose driver complains that she right hooked a bike rider and was actually held responsible for it. And columnist Mr. Roadshow says that’s because she was. Thanks to Robert Leone for the link.

A San Francisco newspaper watches a bike lane for 30 minutes just before rush hour, and observes drivers blocking it an average of once per minute.

No bias here. A bike-riding Sausalito marketing flack says all the people in his neighborhood “resent the awful attitudes, rude demeanor and reckless actions” of roving packs of scofflaw cyclists who terrorize the city at speeds of up to 50 mph.

A popular Sacramento riverfront bike path will be shut down for a month to realign the path and repair a damaged embankment. Someone might want to point that out to officials in Los Angeles, where repairs to the LA River bike path are usually measured in years.

 

National

Bicycling recommends a more comfortable bike seat for women, who have to sit on often-painful parts men don’t.

A Washington columnist says yes, it’s legal to ride a bike on a freeway in the state, which doesn’t mean it’s a good idea.

For the second week in a row, a triathlete has been killed during a competition, this time a 68-year old man who crashed his bike in an Illinois race.

Sad news from Minnesota, where an off-duty cop was killed when he was rear-ended by a driver while riding his bicycle.

There’s a special place in hell for the hit-and-run driver who killed a nine-year old Gary, Indiana boy as he was riding his bike, then burned the car to hide the evidence.

Police and the press in upstate New York freak out over a group of around 60 kids on bicycles riding in the roadway. And by all reports, taking the lane just like they should.

A New York op-ed says the way to stop the recent rash of bicycling deaths is to do what it takes to cut the number of cars on the streets.

Bike Snob says New York Mayor and presidential candidate Bill di Blasio’s “audacious” plan to prevent bicycling deaths just isn’t enough.

The University of Virginia offers suggestions on how to stay safe while you’re riding your bike. And for a change, most of them make sense.

The bike rider killed in a collision with a pickup truck driver during a Mississippi charity ride was a respected structural engineer for the U.S. Army Engineer and Research Development Center.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution presents six of the city’s best bike trails for your next journey to the Peach State.

Surprisingly, it’s pretty easy riding in the Big Easy these days, as the city ranks  fifth in the US in bike commuting per capita, with 3% of people riding to work. Needless to say, Los Angeles didn’t the list.

 

International

Forbes‘ Carlton Reid offers advice on the easy way to teach your kid to ride a bike.

Here’s another one to add to your bike bucket list — a 400-mile network of dramatic British Columbia rail-to-trail conversions, including 18 former railroad trestles in just one 12-mile stretch.

It takes a massive asshole — and I use the term advisedly — to sell an apparently purloined UK ghost bike online. Or anywhere else, for that matter.

A British author says narrow bike lane traffic islands turn bike riders into human traffic calming islands.

 

Competitive Cycling

In a heartbreaking reminder that cycling is a dangerous sport, 22-year old Belgian pro Bjorg Lambrecht, a member of the Lotto-Soudal team, was killed yesterday while competing in the Tour of Poland.

Lambrecht reportedly fell into a concrete culvert 60 miles from the finish of Monday’s stage, and died during surgery after being resuscitated at the scene.

Race organizers cancelled the traditional post-race podiums and festive atmosphere when the news about Lambrecht broke; today’s stage remains in question.

Thanks to John McBrearty for the tip.

Finally…

Bikeshare today, furniture tomorrow. And don’t park in a bike lane, bro — especially if you’re armed and drinking.

 

Morning Links: LACBC needs to hear from you this Saturday, video from bike/LAPD crash, and a bunch of kindhearted people

Let’s start with some difficult personal news. 

The Corgi is dying. 

If you’ve followed this site for awhile, you’ve no doubt seen her grace these pages, whether as the spokesdog for our annual holiday fund drive, or simply because she wouldn’t get out of the photo. 

And she’s kept me company and watched over me as I’ve written this site for more than nine years. 

But a couple months ago, she started getting sick, and has gotten progressively worse. 

Then last week her new vet confirmed she has an inoperable, malignant tumor at the base of her snout. And at 13, we’ve decided not to make her suffer through radiation therapy just to slow the progression of the disease and buy few more months — for our benefit, not hers. 

Because she’s already given us far more than we could ever have asked. 

Simply put, it’s her time. 

So she’s now in the corgi equivalent of hospice care, with a focus on palliative care to keep her as healthy and happy — and free from pain — as possible, for a long as she has left.

The vet estimates that could be somewhere between three and six months. Or maybe less because of how rapidly her cancer has progressed. 

I share this here because some people have grown attached to her. But also because it will severely impact my life over the next few months. And may affect my ability to put up a new post, or write with the same depth as I strive to do. 

As always, I’ll do my best to be here for you every day with the latest bike news from around the corner, and around the world. 

But I also know the coming days are likely to be very difficult, and she needs me now more than ever before. 

I don’t plan to offer regular updates about her condition here; this site is about bicycles, not my dog.

Or me, for that matter. 

So if you want to keep up with her, and how both of us are doing, you can check in on my personal Twitter account from time to time.

Now let’s get back to why we all came here today.

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Speaking of which, they’re back.

And they want you to tell them where you want them to go.

After wandering in the weeds in recent months as they dealt with an extended leadership vacuum, and ineffective and misguided leadership when they had one, the LACBC is ready to re-engage with the city’s bicycling community.

Although much smaller and poorer than in recent years.

When new LACBC Executive Director Eli Akira Kaufman was hired to take over the coalition, it wasn’t long before major financial problems were revealed.

A lack of fundraising by the previous, largely disengaged Executive Director and mismanagement by the board of directors led to an existential crisis that literally threatened the survival of what had been Southern California’s most influential bicycling advocacy organization.

No wonder city leaders ignored them. And us.

Massive cost cutting, including the painful loss of over half the staff, through no fault of their own, has led to a temporary period of stability.

As a result the coalition until the end of the year to get their shit together raise a substantial amount of funding and develop a more sustainable business model just to stay afloat, even in their smaller size.

Kaufman makes no bones about the LACBC’s current predicament.

“We’ve been out of touch with the community we serve for too long,” he said. “We need to get back in touch, and listen to the people so they’ll feel like, and be, a part of the of the mission.”

“Let’s be honest. If we were making an impact they would already support us.”

The changes at the coalition also includes new leadership on the LACBC board, where Pure Cycles co-founder Michael Fishman has taken over as chair, with Kevin Shin of Walk Bike Long Beach as the new vice chair.

Previous chair Mark Caswell remains on the board to provide continuity after stepping down.

The LACBC is also attempting to recruit four new members, who Kaufman describes as an entertainment industry executive, a politically connected attorney, a socially conscious developer committed to livable urban density, and someone with a much-needed background in non-profit fundraising.

“We’re not done,” Kaufmann continued. “I wouldn’t be fighting this hard if we were. But now isn’t the time to be conservative. The old way of ‘Not right now’ just doesn’t work for us anymore.”

Which brings us to this Saturday.

The LACBC is hosting an open house from 11 am to 3 pm at the LACBC HQ, 634 S Spring Street in DTLA, with a presentation by Kaufman at 1 pm.

They want to listen to you. Whether or not you’re a member of the coalition. And regardless of how or where you ride.

If you ride a bike, or care about those who do, that’s all that matters.

They’re calling it Which Way LA-CBC, a play on Warren Olney’s long-running program on KCRW.

The whole idea is to reconnect, and let you tell them who they should be, and what they should do, from this point forward.

Because really, it’s your bike coalition. And your representatives at City Hall.

Even if they’ve fallen down on the job in recent months.

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Onscene TV posts raw video from Tuesday’s crash between a bike rider and an LAPD motorcycle cop near Lake Balboa — fortunately, after both victims had been taken to the hospital.

And am I the only one who keeps reading that name as Obscene TV?

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Today’s common theme is kindhearted people.

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies set out to buy a new bike for a 12-year old Cerritos boy after he reported his bike stolen, then Walmart donated it to them at no charge.

After a New Hampshire boy’s bike was stolen, an anonymous veteran dropped off a replacement at a local police station; a few hours later, police arrested a woman after spotting her riding the boy’s original bike.

A pair of cops dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a Shreveport, Louisiana man who can’t hear or speak, after failing to find his stolen bike.

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Trek has recalled their popular Kickster kids balance bike due to a defect in the steerer tube clamp that can lead to dangerous falls.

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

A road raging Cincinnati driver was indicted on two counts of felonious assault for speeding ahead of a bike rider and intentionally dooring him after the victim had flipped him off.

British police accused “sick vigilantes” of booby trapping scenic trails with broken branches, carpet tacks and a wall of rocks.

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Local

Los Angeles has finished the first of a planned series of Complete Streets on a 2.3-mile stretch of Roscoe Blvd through Panorama City and North Hills to improve safety for “pedestrians, bikes, buses and cars.” Although it’s unclear from the story whether anything was actually done to improve bike safety.

Extremist hate came to Santa Monica Monday, when someone spray painted anti-Jewish slogans on the pedestrian bridge over PCH, and “Holocaust is a lie” on the beachfront bike path; the city removed them the same day.

 

State

If you’re carrying weed and glass bongs on your bike, try not to look suspicious — and don’t flee from the cops, because that shit is legal in California now.

Evidently, not all businesses in San Diego’s North Park neighborhood prefer parking spaces to bike-riding customers; a total of 18 local businesses have come out in support of the planned protected bike lane on 30th Street that would remove 420 parking spaces.

The dockless e-scooter industry is fighting back against the San Diego repo firm and a bike shop owner who have confiscated over 10,000 of the devices because they were left in the wrong places.

A new underpass and bridge mean San Diego’s Rose Creek bike path is that much closer to its anticipated opening next year.

Once again, authorities keep a dangerous driver on the roads until it’s too late. A Bakersfield woman is in critical condition with major injuries after an alleged drunk driver slammed into her bike; the driver was previously convicted of DUI and hit-and-run after pleading no contest to the charges 26 years earlier. Seriously, fleeing a crash while under the influence should be enough to permanently disqualify someone from having a license.

Calistoga police haven’t made an arrest yet in the hit-and-run death of a bike rider who was found lying next to his bicycle in the early morning last week.

The bicyclist who was struck and killed by two drivers in a Sonoma County crash has been identified as a 39-year old Santa Rosa man; meanwhile, investigators continue their outrageous victim blaming, saying they don’t know if he was impaired. So why the hell even mention it unless they do?

Folsom has attempted to tackle the problem of speeding drivers by installing smart traffic lights that turn red if someone is exceeding the speed limit.

 

National

A new study shows that investing funds in building better biking routes improves access to jobs in US cities, while another study shows drivers are more likely to buzz women on bikes than they are men.

Bicycling’s Selene Yeager says if you want to be happier at work, ride your bike there.

CNN lists their picks for five of the best bike locks.

Someone went on a bike theft spree in a Colorado mountain resort, snatching six bicycles throughout town on a single night.

A chance discovery at the popular RAGBRAI ride across Iowa led to a groundbreaking study that has improved the lives of Parkinson’s patients.

Dallas bike cops teamed with a security guard to rescue a suspected drunk driver from a fiery crash after he drove his car into a downtown building.

A Cleveland man is in custody for allegedly ramming a pair of men sharing a bicycle with his SUV, then getting out and robbing them at gunpoint; the theft was reportedly in retaliation for stealing drugs and guns from the thief and his unidentified partner.

An Ohio city plans to use eminent domain to claim an abandoned rail line that the owner refuses to sell to make room for a rail-to-trail bikeway.

The speaker of New York’s city council calls for a permanent crackdown on reckless and bike lane-blocking drivers.

Sad news from Maine, where the CEO of IDEXX, the state’s third largest employer, suffered a severe spinal injury while on a club ride last month, leaving him with limited mobility in his arms, and none in his legs, torso and fingers; no word on how it happened.

 

International

Accusations fly in Ottawa following the death of a 13-year old boy who was killed by a driver as he was riding his bike; the head of the city’s Transportation Committee tweeted that bike riders were just left-wing publicity hunters who aren’t helping the cause of safety. Nice guy.

Another reminder of the dangers of potholes, as a Montreal woman suffered a broken nose, three broken teeth and bruises across her entire body after she struck one and flew off her bike.

No shit. A Malta bike rider complains that putting sharrows on high-speed arterial roads is just insane, after a driver buzzes him with inches to spare.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. After an 84-year old New Zealand man ran a red light and slammed into a woman riding her bike, knocking her cold, a driving assessment showed he was perfectly fine to keep on driving and do it again to someone else.

 

Competitive Cycling

Eurosport remembers when the great Eddy Merckx won the Tour de France with a legendary descent from the Col du Galibier to Valloire, site of today’s 18th stage.

Cycling Weekly asks when is it too hot for a bike race, as temperatures in the Tour de France climb north of 105 degrees.

The Beach Reporter sings the praises of local riders who won, or helped lead their teams to victory, in last weekend’s Manhattan Beach Grand Prix, including last year’s US national women’s champ Coryn Rivera.

Mechanics from a Vancouver bike shop fix banged up bikes overnight every night to keep competitors going in British Columbia’s toughest singletrack stage race.

Outside wants to introduce you to the Billie Jean King of professional bike racing.

Former doper and current clean cycling team manager Jonathan Vaughters’ forthcoming memoir goes deep into the sport’s relatively recent dirty past to revisit the halcyon doping days of Lance and Landis.

 

Finally…

It’s a trick question — you can’t ride a bike to the moon. If you’re going to wear a dress to rob a bank and make your escape by bike, at least try to wear practical shoes. Especially if you’re a guy.

And if you don’t want “nuisance cyclists” riding on the sidewalk, then improve safety on the damn street already.

Seriously.

 

Morning Links: Nipsey Hussle was one of us, and kindhearted cop replaces 91-year old Tarzana woman’s stolen bike

The late Nipsey Hussle was one of us.

………

A 91-year old Tarzana woman is back on the road after a kindhearted cop teamed with Reseda Bicycles to replace her stolen adult tricycle.

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Local

CD2 Councilmember Paul Krekorian, who killed a shovel-ready plan for bike lanes on Lankershim Blvd, says climate change is creating a sense of global urgency, and young Angelenos want “land use decisions to be used in a way that creates walkability, bike-ability, and proximity between work, entertainment and homes.” Never mind that the Lankershim bike lanes he killed would have addressed both of those concerns. But hey.

Two Lincoln Heights teachers and an Olympic cyclist have teamed to form the LA LA Bike Club at the Los Angeles Leadership Academy, giving students an alternative to drug use and gang activity.

State

No surprise here. Encinitas bicycle advocate and local leader Roberta Walker and her husband have filed a claim against the city for the crash that left her with critical injuries last December, arguing that the signage and sharrows she was riding on were confusing and contributed to the crash. And that there should have been a bike lane, instead.

San Diego trauma surgeons say the rash of scooter-related injuries goes on, though they won’t give any actual figures until a journal study comes out later this year.

Hoodline ranks the five best bike shops in San Diego. The question is whether San Diego bicyclists would actually agree.

Oakland has released the draft of their proposed 2019 bike plan for public comment. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

A pair of Napa parents are committed to promoting bicycle safety after their 11-year old son was seriously injured when he was struck by a driver while crossing the street on his bike; naturally, the driver wasn’t charged.

National

Outside discusses five insects everyone can eat. Most bike riders have probably eaten a few before learning to ride with their mouths closed.

Looks like Seattle is retreating on its bike-friendly reputation. A week after pulling the plug on a long-planed bike lane, Seattle scratches plans for 22 proposed bikeways, requiring an update in the city’s Bike Master Plan.

Speaking of Seattle, the local paper offers seven reasons to buy an ebike.

Grand Junction CO makes a big deal over their new sharrows, saying they show where bicyclists are allowed to use the full lane — before noting that they don’t actually change anything.

Texas bike riders participating in the Ride for Reading San Antonio program collect books each month, then ride to distribute them to local schools. Meanwhile, a San Antonio, Texas bike shop owner was killed by an alleged drunk driver, who said she saw his bike and flashing lights, but somehow couldn’t avoid hitting him.

An Austin, Texas writer discovers she actually can give up driving for a month and survive. And likes it.

A group of bike-riding teenagers swarmed Boston’s former Big Dig tunnel, taking over two lanes of the freeway on the O’Neill Tunnel until they were herded out by police. Although I’m more concerned by the driver who used a handheld cellphone to record them.

Queens residents demand the NYDOT finish the uncompleted bike lane on Queens Blvd, despite loud organized opposition.

Streetsblog informs New York’s bike-riding police commissioner that many of the department’s rank-and-file don’t share his bike-friendly attitude.

A new short film shows New York’s ill-advised war on ebikes through the eyes of the Chinese delivery people who bear the brunt of if.

A Virginia man was given eight life sentences without the possibility of parole for the rape and murder of a Muslim teenager who was walking to a Ramadan service with a group of friends; the incident began with road rage when he honked at a bike rider in the group, who angered him by yelling back at him.

They get it. Business owners along a Baton Rouge LA street undergoing a road diet say it will be worth it once the work is finished. Even if the work is 18 months behind schedule.

International

They’re some of us, too. US Magazine shows bike-riding celebs around the world. Depending on how you define celebrities, of course. Although I like Lea Michelle, who said she kept a bicycle on the Paramount lot to bike to the set and back.

A bike-riding Toronto man is on trial for fatally bludgeoning a family friend with a steel pipe for no apparent reason.

The BBC’s Piers Morgan insists that bike riders should be licensed and insured, accusing riders of being “completely unaccountable,” “invisible people marching around anonymously on your bikes creating havoc.” Maybe someone should explain to him how bicycling works, because marching ain’t it.

Bicycle and motorized scooter-based ambulances are expanding the reach of healthcare in Uganda.

A Chinese man was critically injured when he was struck by a bicycle. No, it was a riderless bikeshare bike that someone threw out the window of a tall building.

The Chinese woman who cheated in a marathon by riding a bike for much of the route has received a well-deserved lifetime ban. Hope that 5 hour, 38 minute time was worth it; makes you wonder how long she would have taken without cheating.

Competitive Cycling

Dutch Continental rider Robbert de Greef was placed in a medically induced coma after suffering a heart attack while competing.

Italian downhill racing legend Corrado Hérin was killed when the ultralight plane he was piloting crashed.

Finally…

Build your own 37 mph, handlebar-free ebike ‘bent. Apparently, you’re not supposed to ride a bicycle pulling a suitcase on a Shanghai freeway.

And here’s a second chance if you missed yesterday’s round of April Fools gags.

Although I think the UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies won the day.

Morning Links: December bike events, dockless bikeshare, and adaptive bikes and kindhearted people

We’ve got a long list of bike events this month. So grab a cup of whatever you’re drinking, and settle in for awhile.

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The Abbot Kinney outpost of Bay Area bag maker Timbuk2 is hosting a Break Up With Your Bag food drive next weekend.

Here’s how they describe it.

Timbuk2, the San Francisco-based creator of intuitive, stylish and personalized bags to outsmart the city, is hosting a two-day Break Up With Your Bag event from Saturday, December 9 to Sunday, December 10. Stop by the Venice shop for a chance to give back to the local community and gain something special in return. Have some extra food or an unused bag lying around? Timbuk2 encourages their neighbors to donate to someone in need for something they can use in exchange.

Here’s how it will go down:

  • First, bring in any non-perishable food item OR any gently used bag, no matter the brand, that’s ready to bid adieu.
  • Next, Timbuk2 will donate every used bag to Bikerowave, and every non-perishable food item to the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank.
  • At last, Timbuk2 will hook it up with a new item for 40% off!

To enhance this rewarding experience, Timbuk2 will provide tasty snacks and refreshing libations from Fort Point Beer. So mark those calendars and grab a bud, because breaking up feels good when it means giving back.

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In other bike events this month,

Bike SGV invites you to join them in tonight’s La Puente Holiday Parade.

Heal the Bay is hosting an Explore Ballona! Bike Ballona Creek ride this Saturday.

I. Martin is holding their “Shut Up Legs” Saturday morning ride, while Helen’s Cycles is hosting a Monthly Group Ride tomorrow, and a TriFit Beginner’s Ride on Sunday.

Bike SGV celebrates the season with their annual holiday awards fest Noche de las Luminarias Saturday afternoon.

Join Bike Oven in the NELA Holiday Parade this Sunday.

Also on Sunday, the LACBC teams with AARP for the December edition of their popular monthly Sunday Funday Ride, offering a tour of Griffith Park. And no, you don’t have to be over 50 to participate.

Bike SGV is celebrating the Monrovia Holiday Parade on Bicycles December 7th.

Also on the 7th, the LACBC is holding their annual Open House.

Santa Monica Spoke is hosting an Ugly Sweater Holiday Ride with the Mayor of Santa Monica on December 9th.

Also on the 9th, the LACBC is teaming with former pro Phil Gaimon, author of the new Draft Animals, for the 3rd Annual Clean UP Mulholland.

CicLAvia returns to iconic Wilshire Blvd on December 10th.

The very busy Bike SGV is holding a Cycling Santas Holiday Lights Ride on the 16th.

The 12th edition of LA’s iconic Feel My Legs, I’m A Racer hill climb competition rolls December 17th.

Also on the 17th, Walk Bike Glendale and the equally busy LACBC are hosting a Holiday Bike Ride.

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Today’s common theme is dockless bikeshare — and dockless bikeshare problems — around the world.

A new semi-dockless bikeshare system from Zagster promises to overcome the problem of abandoned bikes by offering a system that can be locked to their docks or any bike rack. Although that could mean bikeshare bikes hogging limited bike parking.

Dockless bikeshare is raising safety concerns in Dallas as abandoned bikes litter a popular tiding trail, even as a fifth bikeshare provider prepares to come to town.

A writer for Bicycling offers thoughts after riding dockless bikeshare around DC for a week.

A bike industry website says the uncontrolled spread of dockless bikeshare is not what European cities want.

Sydney, Australia’s government councils have given dockless bikeshare operators three months to clean up their act.

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Another common theme is adaptive bicycles. And the kindhearted people who help keep their owners riding.

It takes a real schmuck to steal an adaptive bike from a Danville school; fortunately, police were able to recover it.

Friends are crowdfunding a new adaptive tricycle for an Iowa woman with cerebral palsy, after someone stole the one she used to ride to work.

Ohio firefighters buy a new adaptive bicycle for a 12-year old girl with cerebral palsy after she called asking for help finding one.

After someone stole a three-wheeled bike a man with Down’s syndrome used to ride to his job at a Cleveland restaurant, his boss quickly ordered a new one for him.

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This is day eight of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

You can donate with just a few clicks by using PayPal. Or by using the Zelle app that is probably already in the banking app on your smartphone; send your contribution to ted @ bikinginla dot com (remove the spaces and format as a standard email address).

Any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated to help keep SoCal’s freshest bike news coming your way every day.

As an added bonus, frequent contributor Megan Lynch will provide a free download of her CD Songs the Brothers Warner Taught Me to anyone who makes a contribution during the fund drive. If you’ve already contributed and would like a copy, just email me at the address above and I’ll forward it to her.

And thanks to Chris K and Megan L for their generous donations to help support this site.

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Local

A very polite editorial in UCLA’s Daily Bruin calls on Councilmember Paul Koretz to provide desperately needed bike lanes in Westwood Village. Maybe they’ve forgotten Koretz’ promise to business owners in the Village that he’d never allow bike lanes on Westwood Blvd in the Village.

LA plans to complete two LA River bike path projects by 2025 as part of their Twenty-Eight by ’28 list to complete before the coming 2028 Olympic Games.

CiclaValley recognizes the bad driver of the month.

Santa Clarita opens a new trailhead leading to the Santa Clara River Trail, complete with bike racks and a repair stand.

Los Angeles reaches a settlement with El Segundo that will allow planned improvements to go forward at LAX, including a consolidated rental car center and improved bicycle and pedestrian access.

Now you can rent ebikes in Long Beach’s Shoreline Village.

 

State

San Diego County agrees to a $77,500 settlement in the death of an unarmed man as he was working on his bicycle in his parent’s garage.

San Bernardino authorities have filed a murder charge against 34-year old Dominic Simmons in the death of Elroy Preston last Sunday; Simmons allegedly ran down Preston as he rode his bike after the two had been in the same home together.

San Francisco police hold a fundraiser for a bike cop who was severely injured when he was run down by a driver in October.

No irony here. After an Oakland cop refuses to ticket a driver parked in a bike lane because he has better things to do, a Streetsblog writer see his patrol SUV in the parking lot, with a police bicycle on the back.

Lake County’s Bike Angels are planning a bicycle giveaway next month for anyone who survived October’s Sulphur Fire.

Seriously, always look both ways before you cross the street, unlike this Chico rider.

 

National

Momentum looks at why North American cities rarely rank among the world’s best bike cities, and what we can do about it.

Ohio police are looking for a bank robber who made his getaway by mountain bike.

A Cambridge, Massachusetts bike rider calls on the city to suspend new bike lanes for the winter, saying they make traffic worse by putting bike riders in the middle of the lane, slowing traffic. Which makes it sound like he doesn’t know the difference between a bike lane and sharrows.

A Brooklyn bike shop owner wants you to visit your local bike shop December 9th for the first Bike Shop Day.

Philadelphia cyclists demand safer bike lanes now, after a woman was killed by a garbage truck while riding in a bike lane.

A Georgia woman won’t be behind the wheel again for a very long time, after she was sentenced to 25 years behind bars for killing one bike rider and injuring another after plowing into a group of riders while driving distracted with methadone and other drugs in her system, and her two-year old daughter in the car with her; she was still driving despite two previous DUI arrests. Yet another example of keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late.

Heartbreaking story from Florida, as a woman survived Hurricane Irma in a dramatic rescue, and fell in love with her rescuer, only to die at the hands of a hit-and-run driver as she was riding her bike.

 

International

The UK’s Cyclist Magazine writes in praise of the bicycle.

A British advocacy group calls on Britain not to miss a huge opportunity to change the country’s future by expanding safe bicycling networks, as 37% of say they aren’t willing to let their kids ride to school.

An Irish writer calls for an end to hate speech directed towards bicyclists, which is banned when directed towards other groups. The 1st Amendment means a prohibition like that would be illegal in the US.

A French company launches what they consider the world’s safest bicycle, complete with electronic anti-lock brakes, automatic emergency braking, and a 360-degree warning system. Full body bubble wrap is optional.

Aussie riders call for safety improvements along a highway that’s a popular but frightening riding route, which one rider terms a “goat track.”

 

Competitive Cycling

A European website recounts the biggest scandals in pro cycling over the past year. Of which there were many, evidently.

The Giro d’Italia won’t start next year’s race in West Jerusalem after all, after Israeli officials threaten to cancel the race because there is no east or west Jerusalem as far as they’re concerned. But the only thing that actually changed was the wording on the website.

 

Finally…

How a NASCAR racer overcomes his fear of spandex. You may not be able to make it up the world’s great climbs, but now you can down your coffee from them.

And if you don’t like your commute, just paint your own road signs.

Thanks to the aforementioned Megan Lynch for that last link.

    

Morning Links: The death of LA’s Vision Zero, safety improvements in Mar Vista, and more kindhearted people

Vision Zero, in any meaningful sense, is dead in Los Angeles.

We may see incremental improvements; a new crosswalk here, a bike lane there. But only if they don’t adversely affect anyone on four wheels.

Which is not what Vision Zero is about.

But any meaningful attempt to reduce traffic deaths to anywhere near zero in finished.

That’s because CD11 Councilmember Mike Bonin and LA Mayor Eric Garcetti jointly announced yesterday that they are caving in to the angry NIMBY and driver-led backlash, and ripping out the bike lanes and road diets in Playa del Rey.

Although that’s not the way they put it.

And in the process, throwing bicyclists and anyone else who fought for the changes under the bus. Perhaps literally.

They present it as a compromise, with a long list of pedestrian-focused improvements that won’t do crap to protect people on bikes, slow traffic or prevent crashes between motorists.

But let’s be honest.

This is a compromise like Jim Bowie and Davey Crockett compromised at the Alamo.

Those pedestrian improvements were already planned as the next phases of the community-driven process to improve safety in Playa del Rey — after the road diets, not in place of them.

So instead of improving safety and livability in the area, it will go back to being a virtual freeway for pass-through motorists.

Except now the city will be on the hook financially for every death and injury that occurs in the area, after removing the safety improvements designed to prevent them.

It’s a liability lawyer’s dream.

Worse, though, is the potentially fatal damage it’s done to Vision Zero in Los Angeles, as few, if any, councilmembers will be willing to subject themselves to the hate and vitriol Bonin and his staff have faced.

It’s a surprise they held out as long as they did.

Chances are, road diets are now off the table in this city. Perhaps permanently.

The same with installing the bike plan, which is no longer worth the silicon it’s printed on. Or any other substantive street changes that inconvenience motorists in any way, or makes NIMBY home and business owners sharpen their pitchforks and light the Tiki torches.

Even if they’re the ones who’ll benefit from it.

And even though Vision Zero was never about crosswalks or enforcement — or cutsie football videos — but about redesigning the roadways so that when people act like people do, their mistakes won’t be fatal. To them or anyone else.

Which is what these road diets were supposed to do.

But we’ll never know if they would have succeeded or not, because they were never given the chance.

I’ve long questioned whether LA’s leaders had the courage and conviction to make the tough choices Vision Zero would require, and withstand the inevitable criticism that would be directed their way.

They’ve answered with a resounding no.

The odd thing, though, is that Garcetti somehow got his name attached to the plan to restore traffic lanes — and got top billing, no less.

Even though he didn’t do a damn thing to implement or support the road diets. Or any of the other traffic safety improvements that have gone down to defeat under his tenure, from bike lanes on Westwood Blvd to sidewalks on the Hyperion-Glendale bridge.

He hasn’t shown up for a single public safety meeting since announcing Vision Zero to great fanfare two years ago. Or made a single public statement in support of Mike Bonin and the desperately needed safety changes in Playa or Mar Vista.

And yet, he gets full credit — if that’s the word you want to use — for restoring the Playa del Rey streets to their original dangerous condition, and thrusting a dagger through the heart of his own signature safety policy.

It’s been seven years since the late Bill Rosendahl stood before the city council and proclaimed that car culture ends today in the City of Angels.

He was wrong.

It’s clearly just getting started. And we will all pay the price.

………

In better news, The Argonaut reports on the figures released last week showing safety improvements and a reduction in speeding on Venice Blvd following the recent lane reductions.

However, traffic truthers refuse to accept the results; the leader of the Bonin recall effort tried to claim the street was actually more dangerous, because injuries went up on a per capita basis since there was a drop in traffic.

………

Today’s common theme, kindhearted people — mostly in blue.

An Ohio sheriff held back bicycles from a property auction, insisting that they be given to kids and adults who need them instead.

Tennessee cops pitch in to buy a man a new bicycle, after the one he relied on to get to work was stolen.

A Florida man bought a new bicycle for a boy who was run over by a distracted driver as he was riding to school; unfortunately, he’s too scared to ride it.

But Michigan cops got it backwards, buying a car for a woman who rode her bike or took a bus 13 miles to work for years.

………

Women’s racing takes a big step back, as the Tour de France cut’s the women’s La Course back to a single day.

Austrian cyclist Christoph Strasser set a new indoor 24-hour record at 585.25 miles, and vows to never ride on a track again; he’s a four-time winner of the Race Across America.

And SoCalCross offers a video recap of the year’s first cyclocross race at Irvine Lake.

………

Local

The city council’s Public Works and Gang Prevention Committee approved a motion to paint LA’s bike lanes a dull, non-reflective green, prioritizing the convenience of the film industry over the safety of bike riders. After all, it’s just so damn hard for film crews to cover-up a bike lane with some sort of mat, let alone fix it in post.

LADOT has installed what appears to be a very problematic bus loading platform in the bike lane on First Street in DTLA, which forces riders up a sharp ramp while creating a crowded conflict point when people board or get off; as passengers adjust to it, they will likely start to wait on the platform, blocking the bike lane.

UCLA parking meister Donald Shoup has been honored with the 2017 Distinguished Educator Award, the highest honor offered by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning; Shoup’s work has changed the understanding of the hidden costs of parking around the world.

Musician Andrew Bird used the LA River as his muse, inspired by his bike rides along it.

CiclaValley M.A.S.H.s gears up the Bulldog.

 

State

A 60-year old San Diego man was seriously injured when a woman crashed into his bike in Pacific Beach.

I want to be like him when I grow up. An 81-year old San Diego County man just finished a 4,300-mile ride across Canada.

Construction of a new bike path has Santa Barbara residents on edge, as road surface grinding is keeping them up at night.

If people in San Luis Obispo look depressed, it’s because they’re no longer the happiest city in the US. It’s probably no coincidence that every city in the top five is ranked silver or higher on the Bike League’s list of Bicycle Friendly Communities.

A San Francisco bike cop is in grave condition after he was run down by a suspect, who was arrested several hours after fleeing the scene.

 

National

Bicycle Times offers advice on how to clean your dirty, dirty bike.

Rails-to-Trails recommends some haunted pathways for your pre-Halloween riding pleasure, including one with a ghost bike. No, literally.

No surprise here, as the Washington jerk bicyclist who injured a pedestrian after yelling “hot pizza,” expecting her to jump out of the way, is now facing a lawsuit; he uses the same excuse drivers do, saying 3 mph pedestrians shouldn’t mix with cyclists doing 15 mph.

What’s one way to jeopardize a football scholarship at Texas A&M? Stealing a bait bike is a good start.

Bike PGH meets up with carfree former Trojan and current Pittsburgh Steeler JuJu Smith-Schuster.

Now that’s more like it. A New York man was sentenced to five to 15 years behind bars for the hit-and-run death of a bike rider; more importantly, he received a lifetime revocation of his driver’s license. Which should be automatic for any driver in any hit-and-run.

DC has become a testing ground for dockless e-bikeshare.

 

International

A new documentary takes a look at MAMILs, following four men from the US, the UK and Australia. Which should be required viewing for anyone who makes fun of middle-aged people on bikes, spandexed or otherwise.

Road.cc explains how to stop the dreaded speed wobbles.

Bicycles are making a comeback in Cuba.

A Canadian newspaper talks with Danish bicyclist Ole Kassow, who created the Cycling Without Age program.

Ed Sheeran won’t be one of us for a while, after realizing the next day that he had fractured not one, but both arms when he was hit by driver while riding in London; he had to cancel his upcoming Asian tour.

Motorist and bicycling groups both condemn calls for British bicyclists to be required to carry numbered license plates.

A Turkish librarian operates his own personal book bike, towing books for children from village to village in a bike trailer.

An Aussie newspaper says kneejerk decisions to confine dockless bikeshare bikes to specified parking areas defeats the whole purpose.

 

Finally…

Maybe Bonin should have just used a coloring book. Evidently, we’re just sidewalk speeding cyclos.

And the left lane of the southbound 5 Freeway in Newhall Pass may not be the best place to walk your bike.

Especially before 6 am.

Thanks to kdbhiker for the photo.

Morning Links: Hard-hitting Aussie traffic PSAs, cops lectured by bike riders, and more kindhearted people

Australia’s Queensland state introduces a hard-hitting ad campaign to drive home the cost of traffic violence.

Here in Southern California, most traffic deaths never even make the news.

Maybe something like this could finally wake people up to the realization that the cost of the unhindered automotive hegemony on our streets is just too damn high.

………

Caught on video:

A driver gets lectured by a cyclist after failing to signal and observe the three-foot passing law — and turns out to be the chief of police for St. Paul MN, who took it surprisingly well.

A Florida cop gets an earful when he mistakenly tries to tell a cyclist to get on the sidewalk.

………

More kindhearted people in today’s bike news.

An Oregon man scours the local landfill looking for bikes he can fix and give away to children; if he sees kids walking he’ll ask if they need a bike.

Texas police dig into their own pockets to buy a special needs boy a new bicycle after his was stolen by a couple little kids.

Missouri police donate an unclaimed bicycle to a woman who relied on her bike for transportation after it was stolen while she worked as an election volunteer.

South Dakota state troopers pitch in to buy teenage boy a new bicycle after they stopped him walking along a freeway, and learned he had to walk eight miles to work every day.

………

The men’s Olympic mountain bike race ended in a mirror finish of the London Olympics; the results left Peter Sagan feeling flat. Meanwhile, the youngest rider on the course won the women’s race.

Mara Abbott writes movingly about coming so close to winning gold in the Rio road race.

Chris Froome is off to a good start in the Vuelta a España following the team time trial.

And any jerk can steal a bicycle; it takes a special kind of jerk to steal a painted cow from the 2012 London Olympic course that was going to be auctioned off for charity.

………

Local

Richard Risemberg calls for revolution, one council seat at a time.

Shinola brings their Built-in-Detroit ethos to the Grove. Which it turns out is more of an assembled in Detroit ethos, but still.

Santa Monica’s California Incline will reopen on September 1st with new bike lanes and walkways leading to and from PCH.

Santa Monica will host this year’s Kidical Mass ride on September 17th.

Temple City will install stop signs and other traffic measures to improve safety at the intersection of Rosemead Blvd and Sereno Drive, where a bike rider was hit by a car last year.

 

State

An Orange County supervisor successfully lobbied for a bike and pedestrian path along a flood control channel to allow kids to get to school and a park more easily.

The lawyer for a Fresno basketball coach who was sentenced to 12-years in prison for the drunk driving crash that took the life of a seven-year old bike rider, and critically injured his 18-month old sister, has filed a motion to withdraw his no-contest plea, arguing that a new video shows no one, drunk or sober, could have avoided the crash.

Hikers, equestrians and environmental groups are joining in opposition to plans to open backcountry watershed trails in San Francisco’s East Bay to mountain bikes.

The executive director of the Marin County Bicycle Coalition says there’s been an alarming increase in drivers deliberately targeting people on bicycles. Anyone threatening a cyclist with a motor vehicle should automatically face a charge of assault with a deadly weapon, and do time upon conviction.

There’s also been a jump in bike thefts in Marin County, with roughly 300 bicycles stolen so far this year.

 

National

Advice on how to ride a bike with your dog.

An Aussie couple are riding across the US with their autistic son, traveling over 3,000 miles from Washington to Washington. Hopefully, they won’t have to deal with a rampaging raccoon.

Dallas wisely agrees to void a $259 fine for riding a bicycle without a helmet, which isn’t illegal for adults in Texas.

A photographer catches a woman and her bike being washed off a Lake Michigan breakwater.

A young Turkish woman is making what her doctors call a miraculous recovery after being the victim of a hit-and-run while riding her bike in Ohio early last month.

Sometimes a bike is just a bike; this one is more than that to a local St. Louis community.

Plans are gaining speed for a 60-mile bike and pedestrian trail connecting 24 towns along the Delaware River.

Many people who ride across the country do it to raise awareness for a cause. A 50-year old Florida woman raised awareness for 50 causes, one for each of the 50 days of her journey.

 

International

How to survive bicycling on Bolivia’s Death Road.

Sing a song about bicycling with Shakira, and next thing you know, your own bike gets stolen.

Good news, as the British sportscaster who nearly died from malaria after riding from the UK to Rio has awakened from her coma.

An Edmonton, Canada blogger crunched the numbers to determine that riding in a separated shared path is safer than a painted bike lane. Meanwhile, the Edmonton cyclist who was the subject of racial slurs from a road raging driver and his passengers feels more hopeful after a meeting with the mayor.

Caught on video too: Toronto police are investigating after a cab driver swerved into a delivery cyclist after allegedly arguing with the rider for two blocks.

A Toronto writer says it’s okay to yield during your commute, and a little bit of empathy would benefit everyone. Which should be emblazoned on the inside of every windshield in LA. And on every handlebar.

Inspired by the exploits of the British cycling team, a Welsh reporter takes a stab at track cycling.

Leicester, England, home of the world’s most improbable soccer champs, responds to a cycling fatality by investing £2 million — the equivalent of $2.6 million — in a two-way cycle track along a major roadway. That’s exactly how Vision Zero is supposed to work; we may not be able to prevent all deaths, but we can take steps to keep them from happening again.

Bike Radar issues ten very British, and very amusing, cycling problems.

The rich get richer. Bike-friendly Barcelona commits to spending $36 million on new bike lanes. Which is about $36 million more than LA has committed to support the bike lanes called for in the new Mobility Plan.

Good idea. Malta cyclists call on the government to make it illegal to obstruct bike racks.

Pakistani police allegedly beat two young boys accused of bike theft.

A Muslim Chinese man rode his bike over 5,000 miles to perform the Haj in Saudi Arabia.

 

Finally…

It’s not unusual to find things while you’re riding; a human skull, not so much. Or an English hyena, for that matter. The very definition of irony: A bicycle honoring the late great Muhammad Ali was stolen from the gym where he got his start in boxing after his bicycle was stolen.

And let’s finish today by watching Coldplay ride BMX bikes around Mexico City.

Morning Links: Three-foot passing law sign bikelash in PVE, train bike racks in Seattle, and more kindhearted people

That didn’t take long.

Over the weekend we shared a photo forwarded by Jim Lyle showing the new signs promoting the three-foot passing law that went up in formerly bike-unwelcoming Palos Verdes Estates last week, replacing bike-unfriendly signs warning that bike laws are fully enforced in the city.

Now local residents have already taken to social media to bemoan the “ugly” signs besmirching their streets. And of course, complaining that bike riders never stop for stop signs.

Which, apparently, makes it okay to pass at less than three feet and run them off the road. Or worse.

However, since the complaining is being done on a website exclusively for residents of the exclusive Rolling Hills Estates, Lyle was kind enough to forward a sample of the comments.

image

PVE 2

PVE 3

PVE 4

Meanwhile, Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson posts multiple pages of the same anti-bike and anti-bike-friendly-signs vitriol, while reminding readers that the small victory represented by the signs only resulted from bike riders willing to turn out in force to ask for change.

………

Hap Dougherty forwards photos of Seattle’s train system, where bikes actually have racks, rather than just an empty space at the back of the car.

Seattle bike racks 1

Seattle bike racks 2

With something like this, the relatively petite cars on the Expo Line could easily hold four bikes, rather than fitting two at best in the space currently available.

Or just one if the rider insists on standing with his or her bike.

………

More kindhearted people.

After a 10-year old boy’s bicycle was stolen during a bike rodeo at a local school, Clovis police replace it for him.

After a 11-year old Canadian girl’s bike was stolen, the investigating officer slipped her mother some money for a new bike, and a family friend left a new bike on their doorstep.

………

Local

CiclaValley says there’s an important meeting with the Army Corps of Engineers to discuss future flood control measures on the LA River, which hopefully won’t result in more closures of the bike path.

A bike rider was shot to death in broad daylight on a Bell bike path Saturday afternoon.

 

State

The Orange County Register paints bikeshare as just a “hip idea to central planners,” and a trendy and “most unnecessary boondoggle” that shouldn’t be the recipient of public subsidies. Unlike driving, which is only possible with massive public subsidies; apparently, the paper feels a desperate need to reaffirm their shaky conservative credentials after a change in ownership.

The Big Bear Cycling Festival began over the weekend, and continues with events all week.

The Lompoc Valley Bicycle Club has been meeting weekly for over 25 years to ride to Buellton for breakfast.

A Chico bike rider says he lost his sense of community after he went over his handlebars on a busy street, as people continued to drive by without stopping to help as he lay there unable to move with a broken arm, and his bike on top of him.

 

National

Portland police ride a 21-mile trail surrounded with homeless encampments searching for stolen bikes. And not surprisingly, find them.

New York police are looking for a bike rider who returned fire when a man in a Jeep shot at him. So why aren’t they looking for the driver of the Jeep?

North Carolina ups the bike-friendly ante with a shiny new four-foot passing law; motorists who force riders off the road, make them crash or even just make bicyclists change lanes will now face increased fines.

Funds that had been raised for a homeless Georgia college student who rode his bike six hours to register for class have been put on hold, as the woman who started the gofundme account has concerns about his story.

 

International

So much for that famed Canadian politeness. A bike rider is the subject of racial slurs after a driver and his passengers get out of their car and tell him to get off the street; however, he reports an outpouring of support after the story went public .

A London columnist claims she came close to being killed by a bike rider when she stepped out of a building on a narrow street without looking. But instead of deciding she should be more careful next time, blames the bike rider who managed to avoid her — and by extension, everyone who likes to ride fast.

Over 26,000 cyclists turn out for the 100-mile RideLondon, though the event had to be cut short after two riders were injured.

A British medical professor says think twice about that acupuncture for cyclists.

British trucking companies are told to remove signs warning bicyclists to stay back.

The widow of a Maltese hit-and-run victim asks drivers to think of the person’s relatives every time they speed past a cyclist.

A Kiwi cyclist says riders are treated like second-class citizens in New Zealand.

Perth, Australia releases ambitious plans to create a Dutch-style bicycle network suitable for eight to eighty-year olds.

A Philippine woman writes an open letter to a road raging driver who fatally shot a bike rider following an argument; the shooter claims he was provoked by the “arrogant” cyclist.

A Taiwanese taxi driver had a blood alcohol level over five times the legal limit when he slammed into two bicyclists; police found four empty beer cans inside the taxi, suggesting he’d been drinking behind the wheel.

 

Finally…

Apparently, the key to remaining royally attractive in your 50s is to ride a bicycle. What do NASCAR drivers do on their days off? Ride bikes, of course.

And now you, too, can have your own Nobel Laureate parking space. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

 

Morning Links: Charges filed in Santa Clarita hit-and-run; candidates for LA County 4th District Supervisor talk

Charges have been filed in the death of cyclist Rod Bennett in Santa Clarita last week.

According to the Santa Clarita Valley Signal, Lucas James Guidroz has been charged with gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and hit-and-run resulting in death for fleeing the scene after running down Bennett from behind.

It will be interesting to see what evidence prosecutors to support the DUI charge, since Guidroz waited two days to turn himself in — and then only after his car was discovered — giving him plenty of time to sober up first.

Meanwhile, the Santa Clarita Gazette offers a nice profile of the popular music and math teacher who lost his life at age 53. And unlike the Signal, they get his name right.

………

KPCC’s Air Talk program hosts a debate among the candidates for the 4th District LA County Supervisor to replace termed out Don Knabe, who’s held the seat for 26 years.

Bike the Vote LA rates US Rep. Janice Hahn as the top choice for the position.

………

The family of fallen Panorama City bicyclist Peter Loretta is looking for the kindhearted stranger who comforted the homeless man as he lay dying after being struck by a car last month.

They’d like to thank him for his kindness. As should we all.

………

Another Russian cyclist has tested positive for doping based on four-year old samples from the London Olympics. Meanwhile, Cycling Weekly asks the experts if doping can ever be eradicated from cycling. As long as there are benefits to cheating, people will find a way to do it. 

US pro cyclist Tejay van Garderen pulls his name from consideration from the Rio Olympics out of concern for the Zika virus with a pregnant wife at home.

VeloNews offers a nice profile of American cyclist Evan Huffman, who’s back racing for a domestic Continental team after two less than satisfying years on the WorldTour with Astana.

Two cyclists were bound by Taylor Phinney’s violent crash in the 2014 Nationals; one made it back to the top, the other hit bottom.

Cycling Tips looks at how unknown rider Greg Daniels surprised the favorites to win the US national road championship.

………

Local

It could take until next month to fully reopen the LA River bike path. The Corps of Engineers should have most of the flood control barriers removed by the middle of this month, then LADOT could take up to another two weeks to ensure the path is safe to ride. And even then, some barriers could stay up until next year.

UCLA’s Daily Bruin endorses candidates — and in some cases, withholds endorsement — for the Westwood Neighborhood Council. Including one candidate who believes bike lanes on Westwood Blvd should have been studied before being rejected. He’s got my vote already.

The Eastsider takes a look at the co-ed Los Angeles Bike Polo team.

Portland’s Elly Blue, Joe Biel and Joshua Ploeg return to Santa Monica for a vegan bike-focused night sponsored by Santa Monica Spoke.

Cycling in the South Bay’s Seth Davidson reacts to having complaints of fallen cyclists and riders harassed by drivers ignored by the Traffic Safety Committee in Palos Verdes Estates.

Long Beach police bust a thief who tried to use a shovel to break the lock on a bike near the beachfront bike path.

Bike-friendly Long Beach Councilmember Suja Lowenthal prepares to step down after 10 years on the council. Meanwhile, the city ups their bike-friendly ante with 14 new recharge stations providing a fix-it stand and water fountain for cyclists.

 

State

Streetsblog looks at three bike-related bills in the California legislature; one that would explicitly authorize riding side-by-side — which is now tacitly allowed, since it’s not addressed in state law — appears to be in trouble.

Nearly 1,800 students in next year’s Stanford freshman class will get a new bike helmet, courtesy of a bike-riding Stanford parent and his wife.

Sad news from Sacramento, as a bike rider was killed in a collision trying to make a right turn out of a driveway.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on where to position yourself on the road. Yet somehow recommends riding “a bit more into the lane,” rather than assertively taking the center of the lane as recommended by CyclingSavvy and the League of American Bicyclists.

Streetsblog says one chart shows why helmets aren’t the answer to bike safety.

Colorado’s governor vetoes an auto-centric bill that would have banned red light and speed cameras in the state, putting bike riders and pedestrians, as well as drivers, at risk.

A Boulder CO woman says a cyclist just came out of nowhere to pound her car and punch her in the face. The fact that she thought he came out of nowhere probably explains why he was so mad. But violence is never the answer.

Over 100 Texas kids get new bikes for having perfect school attendance over the past year.

Sixty-seven University of Texas students will spend their summer bicycling 4,687 miles from Austin TX to Anchorage AK.

 

International

A London track cyclist died after suffering a heart attack when three separate ambulances failed to respond because the velodrome wasn’t in their outdated satnav systems.

London cyclists call on the city’s new mayor to live up to his promises to improve bike safety.

Now that’s more like it. Great Britain considers on-the-spot fines up to £5,000 — the equivalent of $7,200 — for passing bicyclists too closely. Which compares rather favorably to the measly $35 fine for violating California’s three-foot passing law.

The European Parliament issues a report on the state of bicycling on the continent.

Uber has started a new service for Dutch bike riders, which provides bike rack-equipped cars for an additional charge.

Caught on video: An Aussie truck driver repeatedly attempts to run a cyclist off the road, then exchanges curses with him at the next red light. If a driver tries to run me over, the last thing I’m going to do is wait next to him at a traffic light.

A Thai drunk driver gets four years and a $59,000 fine for killing three bike riders and injuring four others when she plowed into a cycling club last year.

 

Finally…

Get your hot bike back with Bunz. The traditional battle over bike lanes versus parking goes on — but this time, the other side is armed.

And if you’re going to assault an elderly driver for tailgating your bike, it’s probably best to get rid of the meth and syringes in your backpack before the police show up.

Or better yet, just don’t.

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