Tag Archive for kindhearted people

Biking responsibly in the age of Covid-19, returning streets to the people, and 1,000 days of biking to (now closed) school

Last week we brought you the bad news that two of the last remaining LACBC staffers, including coalition’s longest-service employee, were let go as the organization faces serious financial problems exacerbated by the coronavirus crisis.

Today, we’re reposting a letter sent out to members by Executive Director Eli Akira Kaufman, as he addresses both the state of the organization, and advice on whether to ride your bike for the time being.

Because this matters. All of it.

As the COVID-19 crisis continues to worsen, we have been listening closely to our public health officials and our community leaders about what we can do to help flatten the curve and reduce the spread of the virus. The health of the bicycling community and our pedestrian and transit riding friends is our top priority. So we are asking you to do your part by exercising an abundance of caution in everything you do, especially when you take to the street on your bicycle for an essential ride.

What qualifies as essential? We are hearing a range of opinions on this topic, from staying in your neighborhood within a reasonable distance from your home, to avoiding more challenging and/or longer rides with increased exposure to risk of injury, to riding in smaller groups of fewer than 5 or just with members of your household to maintain recommended social (physical) distancing of at least 6 feet. Of course, each of us is different in terms of our level of comfort and fitness on a bike so it really comes down to using common sense and following the very clear guidelines that our civic leaders and public health officials have been sharing for weeks now. At the end of the day, the last thing we want is to end up needing medical attention when our first-responders and healthcare providers are working overtime to handle the pandemic which has been made all the more challenging by the fact that medical resources they need are in such short supply. Once again we believe that all of us need to do our part for the safety of our families and our communities. The more we can avoid non-essential trips, the more we can limit the spread of the disease.

I recognize that hearing this from your Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition may feel off message from our normal advocacy in support bicycle culture and improved infrastructure but that is precisely the point. The COVID-19 pandemic is a new normal that we must adjust to by responsibly advocating for biking as one of the best ways to maintain our physical, mental and community health within our new reality.

In fact we are looking beyond the current surge in COVID-19 cases to the period of months, if not longer, when the virus is still with us but under control enough for Los Angeles County to reopen. How our region reopens is an important question, but we anticipate there will be guidelines for Angelinos to maintain the practice of social (physical) distancing. We also anticipate that during this time non-essential workers and those who can use alternative modes of transportation will be asked to help lessen the crowds on our buses and subways by walking and bicycling. Which is why we anticipate an even greater need for everyone to join us in advocating for safer, healthy, more sustainable and equitable streets for a more livable Los Angeles for everyone.

One more note about our streets during this crisis: many of our fellow riders have jobs that are at essential businesses and many more are still riding as a part of their daily commutes. To support those riders, we ask that everyone take extra care when you are out and about, especially if you are driving. Due to the reduced traffic, many drivers are finding the empty streets a temptation to speed. As many of our fellow riders are still making essential trips, including people commuting and also traveling around their own neighborhoods, we ask all of you to exercise extra caution while you are outside your homes. Whether you are in the saddle or behind the wheel, please make sure to be extra aware of your surroundings, put away the distractions, and travel at safe speeds for your own safety and the safety of others. Again the last thing we need now is more people further burdening our increasingly already strained healthcare system.

Finally, I am sure some of you have heard that LACBC has had to make the difficult decision to reduce our staff for the second year in a row and permanently close down our offices in DTLA to work remotely. The current COVID-19 crisis has resulted in a significant loss of revenue for us this year, especially as spring is one of our most important seasons for our events and education programs. I want to close with a special note of gratitude to the two staffers who we had to let go last week. Colin Bogart and Kevin Claxton have been key members of the LACBC community and larger transportation justice movement for years and in Colin’s case for decades. It has been my privilege to work alongside and learn from Kevin and Colin. They will be deeply missed.

While the current situation is among the hardest we’ve had to endure at LACBC, I firmly believe that we will make it through this crisis and come back stronger than ever. We ask you for your positive thoughts as we prepare LACBC for its next chapter.

And if you are in a position to assist financially, please take a moment to send us a donation.

I’m not exactly rolling in money these days, especially after my wife was let go when her company shut down, perhaps permanently, because of LA County’s stay at home order.

Like far too many others out there.

But I’m going to find the money to renew my membership in the LACBC in the next few weeks.

It’s not going to lift them out of their current financial difficulties.

But we all need to do what can to save an organization that does so much for us.

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One of the few positives to come out of all this whole pandemic mess is that cities across the US are taking entire streets away from cars and giving them to people to get outside and exercise.

Denver shut down four streets to make more room for pedestrians and people on bicycles; more streets may follow soon to allow people to get out while practicing social distancing.

St. Paul, Minnesota, shut down three streets, but only through this Friday, while City Lab maps how cities are reclaiming street space for people.

On the other hand, Los Angeles, which has closed virtually all popular parks and trails, still insists on reserving every inch of asphalt reserved for the cars and drivers that often aren’t there right now.

Rather than giving a little of it back to the people to get outside for awhile.

Thanks to Robert Leone for the links.

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We can all use a smile these days.

Bicycling provides a good one, as they check in with eleven-year old Bodhi Linde, who’s been riding his bike to school every day since kindergarten.

But like schools everywhere, his Rapid City, South Dakota shut down due to the Covid-19 outbreak — just as he was approaching his 1,000th straight day.

So he kept riding the 2.1 miles to school every day anyway. Then turned around and rode back home to take his classes online.

And yes, he hit the mark.

………

Heartless bike thieves continue to plague medical workers in the UK, despite the current coronavirus crisis. Or maybe because of it.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a British paramedic’s bicycle as she was working a 12-hour shift.

A Northern Irish pharmacist saw an outpouring of support after her bike was stolen from her car as she worked, before it was replaced by a local bike shop.

Pro cyclist Luke Rowe came to the rescue after someone stole a bike from a Welsh intensive care medic while he was treating patients; Rowe was having a new bike delivered today.

Speaking of Britain’s National Health Service, this tweet pretty much puts things in perspective.

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On a related subject, today’s common theme is a return of the sort of kindhearted people we usually only see around the holidays.

A pair of Fontana cops dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a seven-year old boy after someone cut the lock to steal his.

A seven-year old Illinois girl ended up with two bicycles, after a Good Samaritan replaced her stolen bike, just hours before police recovered it.

Kindhearted strangers pitched in to buy a new bike for a 12-year old British Columbia boy after the one he got for his birthday was stolen.

After a Malaysian man chased down an aid van from a non-government organization on his bicycle to beg for food for his family when the factory he worked for was shut down because of Covid-19, not only did they respond the next day, but a number of generous people reached out to help.

………

Police immediately seized the license of an 81-year old woman who nearly ran people down while speeding along a Rhode Island bike path.

Don’t get me started on the need for elderly drivers to give up their keys when they can’t drive safely anymore.

Instead of driving them everywhere, hop in the passenger seat and let your older relatives drive. And see if they’re still the safe drivers you remember.

If they ever were, that is.

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Now that the hockey season is on hiatus, NHL players have time for the little things.

Like spending time with their kids. And teaching ’em to ride bikes.

https://twitter.com/Capitals/status/1246814061721006083?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1246814061721006083&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nbcsports.com%2Fwashington%2Fcapitals%2Fwatch-tj-oshie-teach-his-daughter-lyla-how-ride-bike

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

Security has been tightened at a San Anselmo CA school after a group of teens on mountain bikes harassed a security guard, allegedly coughing in his face while making jokes about the pandemic.

A Columbian bike rider was shot to death after opening fire on two cops who stopped him for violating the country’s coronavirus curfew; one of the officers was wounded in the shoulder.

British police are looking for a trio of bike-riding teenagers who attacked a radiographer with the National Health Service in an apparent attempt to steal his headphones; one will need a new bike seat after using it as a weapon during the attack.

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Local

Lyft scooters are now free for health and transit workers for the remainder of the month, here in Los Angeles and in cities around the US; the company is also bolstering their supply of e-scooters around hospitals.

The Wall Street Journal drops their paywall for a photo essay of mask-wearing Angelenos, including Midnight Wilder from Manny’s Bike Shop in Venice.

The coronavirus has given Angelenos a glimpse of what’s possible with fewer cars, as the city enjoys its cleanest air in four decades.

The rector of All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Beverly Hills is one of us. And barely survived coronavirus, anyway.

Andy Garcia is one of us, too, as he takes a casual ride on his cruiser bike through the streets of LA.

Isla Fisher takes a “spirited” bike ride with husband Sacha Baron Cohen through Los Angeles.

Simon Cowell went for an ebike ride with his family through the ‘Bu.

 

State

Millennials say don’t blame them for jerks on San Jose trails.

The CHP has released a very blurry photo of the truck driven by the suspect who allegedly killed a Patterson bike rider in a hit-and-run last week.

The annual America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride scheduled for June has been pushed back, and will be combined with September’s annual Tour de Tahoe.

 

National

An industrial engineering writer says light yourself up and wear reflective clothing, because it’s better to be uncomfortably conspicuous than be a fatality statistic.

Essential workers around the US are getting to work by bike. Meanwhile, Bicycling talks with five bicyclists on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis.

Shades of Burma Shave, as Kansas residents post jokes along a local bike path.

Wisconsin bike riders will have to keep their clothes on for another year, as Madison’s annual World Naked Bike Ride has been cancelled due to Covid-19.

The coronavirus bike boom seems to be having a different effect in different places; while bike shops in some areas can’t keep up with the demand, Chicago shops are seeing a big drop in business.

The Chicago Tribune recommends their top picks for the best ebike conversion kits.

A writer for the New York Times says go outside, but maintain social distancing on the sidewalk. And don’t ride your bike there.

A New York writer says things are worse than you think for the city’s food delivery riders, while bike-riding volunteers are delivering desperately needed  parts for face masks and ventilators. A Medium piece examines how you can support bicycle delivery workers right now. Here’s a tip: Tip.

Writing for the Daily News, a New York college professor says the problem isn’t the cars, it’s the coronavirus; meanwhile, an economic publication calls the pandemic a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to transform the way we travel.

The celebrity bike craze jumps to the East Coast, as CNN’s Anderson Cooper rides through New York sans helmet and face mask while balancing an iced coffee on his handlebars.

Tragic news from Tampa Florida, where a man on a bike and a motorcycle rider were both killed in a collision as the bicycle rider was attempting to cross street a major in a crosswalk.

 

International

Road.cc considers what a fixie is good for, and whether you should get one. Unless maybe you’d prefer riding with a stoker in back.

Cyclist examines the best masks to protect urban bike riders from pollution. And hopefully, coronavirus.

Bike Radar recommends ten cheap hybrid bikes that won’t break the bank.

Quebec is just the latest province or state to conclude that bike shops provide an essential service; New York State fell in line after initially leaving bike shops off the approved list.

London’s Daily Mail visits the world’s largest bicycle garage in the Netherlands, which offers room for 12,500 bikes.

Megan Lynch forwards a great Spanish language piece about Britain’s Clarion Cycling Club, which sent members down to Spain to fight a losing battle against the fascists in the Spanish civil war. If, like me, you don’t read Spanish, just copy the text and dump the whole thing in Google Translate.

A wheelchair-bound Polish man rode his hand-bike over 371 mile across Iceland to raise money for an orphanage. In winter.

An Indian bicycle delivery rider is covering the length and breadth of Delhi delivering food to people who can’t get out — mostly doctors busy battling Covid-19.

Seriously? After a five-year old Taiwanese kid crashed his bike into a parked Tesla, police gave him a breathalyzer test.

The worldwide lockdowns are putting the squeeze on Taiwan’s bikemakers.

New Zealanders are debating whether bike riders are abiding by the country’s lockdown rules, which limits bicyclists to local rides.

 

Competitive Cycling

The Tour of Utah pulls the plug.

VeloNews talks with former women’s pro cyclist Allison Tetrick, now the queen of the Dirty Kanza gravel race, which will now be held in September.

Cycling gazes into its crystal ball to predict the future of pro cycling, while French cyclists request permission to train outside during the country’s lockdown.

Now you can ride just like Lance in his prime; doping optional.

Who says there’s no bike racing this year? Pro cyclists took part in the cancelled Tour of Flanders as the race went virtual; Belgian Greg Van Avermaet won in a virtual breakaway.

The annual Race Across America, aka RAAM, has been cancelled for this year in favor of a virtual race across the country.

One advantage of virtual cycling — the crashes don’t hurt as much. On the other hand, you can’t win if your bike is unplugged.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be made from used plastic bottle caps. Create a preschool indoor trainer with training wheels and a pair of shoes.

And even the Easter Bunny is practicing social distancing on his bike.

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Be safe, and stay healthy.

 

Funds pour in to aid cargo bike mugging victim, ebike maker donates medical masks, and bikes are bliss on two wheels

Let’s start with a little good news for a change.

Because there are still a lot of very kind and generous people in this world.

Yesterday we mentioned the cargo bike-riding elotera who was mugged when a pair of thieves assaulted her in South LA, stealing her purse with the meager amount she had earned to support her family.

She lost $80 to the muggers.

But now, thanks to the generosity of over 450 kindhearted strangers, she’ll be getting more than 135 times that much back.

Photo by Skitterphoto from Pexels.

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Speaking of generous people, I was happy to find this announcement in my inbox yesterday.

Luis Razo, Manager of Operations at Aventon Bicycles, an Ontario, California-based E-bike manufacturer & retailer, says the community has supported the company, so now it’s time to give back four thousand surgical masks and one thousand N95 masks to Loma Linda University Medical Center and Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center, where supplies are running short.

The company will also donate two E-bikes to Loma Linda University Medical Center. It’s a personal mission for Luis Razo. His wife Gracie is an RN at Loma Linda Hospital, on the front lines of this pandemic.

Nice to see so many members of the bike industry pitching in to help when our entire world is in crisis.

Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.

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He gets it.

An Illinois writer describes bicycling as bliss on two wheels. And doesn’t stop there.

Of all avocations, riding a bike is, almost beyond dispute, the finest. With endorphins and all, it is as much exercise for the brain as the heart, lungs or legs, a way to solve all the world’s problems while seeing the world.

Which is about as good a description as I’ve ever come up with.

………

Phil Gaimon remembers what it was like to ride with other people.

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Local

He gets it, too. A writer for the LA Times says it’s time to take streets away from cars and give it to people.

The LA Times examines what’s open (hint: not much) and closed (almost everything) in LA, Orange and San Diego Counties this weekend. At last word, the Ballona Creek bike path, LA River bike path and San Gabriel River Bike Trail were still open, but that could change any time.

Evidently, it was family bike day in LA, with Kate Hudson riding with her son in her LA neighborhood, Arnold riding through West LA with his less-famous daughter, and  Adam Sandler going for a ride with his daughter in the ‘Bu.

English actress and Victoria’s Secret model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is one of us, too, even if she sticks to the sidewalks of Los Angeles.

 

State

A San Jose man writes in to complain that Millennials and their dogs are ruining bike trails for everyone else. Seriously? There are just as many jerk and jackass Baby Boomer and GenXers as there are Millennials — and just as many kind and considerate people, too. It’s no more fair or accurate to blame every member of any generation for the actions of a few than it is any other social, ethnic or religious group.

The Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition says get your bike ready, and get out for a slow ride. Thanks to Robert Leone for the forward.

Tragic news from Stanislaus County, where a 51-year old single father was run down by a driver as he was riding his bike, and left to die alone on the side of the road.

 

National

VeloNews looks at more bikes from the virtual North American Handmade Bicycle Show, including one from my hometown, as well as a very cool wooden tandem. The cycling magazine also offers their take on the best women’s mountain bike gear for 2020.

Bike Mag suggests hacks you can try out on your own bicycle while you’re stuck at home.

Neil Young famously said rust never sleeps. But there are things you can do to keep it from ruining your mountain bike.

Sears waits until the entire bike industry is on the brink to try to claw back money it paid out to several bicycle companies before it went belly up two years ago.

The annual Iron Horse Classic in Southwestern Colorado has been postponed, if not cancelled.

A kindhearted Boise cop bought a bike for a homeless man so he’d have a way to get to work after he was involved in a crash.

The local paper in Lincoln, Nebraska offers tips on how to avoid collisions while maintaining social distancing on the city’s newly crowded bike trails. If that photo is any indication, crowded is a relative term.

A Milwaukee man wanted to show his support for local bike shops struggling to hold on in the coronavirus crisis, so he set out on a solo bike tour of several shops to post words of encouragement in their windows.

A Chicago letter writer says we may be keeping our distance, but people have never been friendlier.

Eight beautiful bike rides in the Chicago area. Or maybe get back to nature on Houston bike trails.

A writer for Jalopnik goes carspotting in New York, and discovers classic bikes are the real city cars. Including the first modern bike built for women.

Bike shops are listed as essential businesses in Pennsylvania.

 

International

Good question. Fast Company questions whether we can maintain the current coronavirus bike boom when the world finally comes out the other side. Which it inevitably will, even if it doesn’t seem like it at the moment.

Cycling Weekly examines what steps bike shops are taking to survive the coronavirus pandemic.

Road.cc wants to get you in a gilet.

British Columbia advocates join their counterparts around the world in calling for more space for pedestrians and bike riders during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Brompton is crowdfunding the equivalent of nearly half a million dollars to donate 1,000 of their iconic foldies to staffers with the UK’s National Health Service; they’ve raised the equivalent of nearly $110,000 with 12 days to go.

The Next Web loves the new race bike from Germany’s direct-to-consumer bikemaker Canyon, but says it’s “hella expensive;” at the equivalent of nearly six grand, though that’s barely midrange these days. On the other hand, Gear Patrol thinks Canyon’s full-suspension mountain bike is surprisingly affordable at $2,399.

Heartbreaking story, as an Indian man is riding over 1,300 miles on a secondhand bike from Mumbai to Kashmir to see his dying father one last time, despite the country’s 21-day mandatory lockdown.

After the country went into a coronavirus lockdown, New Zealand’s Health Minister stirred up controversy by bending, if not breaking, the rules by driving to get out for a mountain bike ride.

 

Competitive Cycling

The Vuelta says they’re sticking with their August start date, despite the cancellation or postponement of most of the cycling season so far this year.

Covid-19 is taking a toll on pro cycling, as riders are forced to take a drastic cut in pay until racing resumes later this year — assuming it does.

 

Finally…

No, you don’t need Android Auto unless you’re actually in one. Oh, nothing much, just a casual fat bike ride through the Yukon at 44° below zero.

And keeping the team alive by riding together every morning, separately. And at home.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy.

 

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.

………

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

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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

………

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

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

This is who we share the roads with.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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?

………

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.

………

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

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

………

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.

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