Tag Archive for Long Beach

Update: Man riding bicycle killed in early morning rear-end collision near CSU Long Beach; 6th LA County bike death this year

Friday was a bad day for Southern California bike riders — starting with a deadly pre-dawn wreck in Long Beach.

According to My News LA, the victim was riding east on 7th Street at Bellflower Blvd around 5:05 am, when he was run down from behind by a driver traveling in the same direction.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, died at the scene before paramedics arrived.

The driver stopped after the crash. Police don’t believe that speeding, distracted driving, or driving under the influence were factors in the crash.

There’s no word on whether the victim had lights on his bike in the pre-dawn hour, or why the driver was apparently unable to see him riding directly in front of their vehicle.

It’s unclear exactly where the crash occurred, however, as Patch Long Beach places the location four-tenths of a mile away, at 7th Street and Campus Drive across from CSU Long Beach.

According to reports, the victim was riding in the right traffic lane when he struck by the driver, who also has not been publicly identified.

However, there is a bike lane on 7th, which the victim would likely have been riding in unless it was blocked, or he was moving across the roadway to make a turn.

Since his body was found on the sidewalk, it seems more likely that the driver drifted into the bike lane, knocking him to the right, than the other way around.

Anyone with information is urged to call Long Beach Police Detective Joseph Johnson at 562/570-7355, or Crime Stoppers at 800/222-TIPS.

This is at least the 23rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County.

Update: The victim has been identified as 42-year old Keith Moore, no city of residence given.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Keith Moore and all his loved ones.

Bike the Vote today, DUI death of Master’s champ Boyes worth one lousy year, and LA approves $13m Mobility Hub contract

Just 301 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we face walking and biking on the mean streets of LA.

Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can.

As of this writing, we’re up to 1,006 signatures, so let’s keep it going! Urge everyone you know to sign the petition, until the mayor agrees to meet with us!

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It was a busy weekend in the bike world, so we’ve got a lot to catch up on.

But before we start, if you haven’t done it yet, find the ballot you got in the mail, fill it out, and drop it off at your nearest drop box. Or hop on your bike, and ride to the nearest vote center to cast your vote in person.

You can also get fare-free rides on Metro trains, buses and Metro Bike bikeshare today.

And if you live in the City of Angels, don’t forget to vote yes on Measure HLA, which will require the city to build out the Mobility Plan they already agreed to, before letting it gather dust on the shelf.

Lives literally depend on it.

If you need a little more guidance, you can find voter guides here from Streets For All, the Los Angeles Times and LAist’s Guide to the Voter Guides.

It’s okay, we’ll wait.

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While we’re waiting for everyone to get back, my brother Eric is headed east from San Dimas on Adventure Cycling’s Bicycle Route 66 today on his way to Las Vegas, and eventually on to Savannah, Georgia, after starting from Santa Monica on Sunday.

Let me give a shoutout to the folks at Trek Bicycle Beverly Hills, the former I. Martin on Beverly Blvd, for giving him an emergency valve repair Saturday to help get him on the road — and not charging a cent.

And no, they didn’t know who I am before doing it.

Then again, who does?

And if you’re hankering to follow my brother’s lead, National Geographic highlights five “stress-free and sustainable” US bike trails to ease you into bike camping.

Eric thanking Camden at Trek Bicycle Beverly Hills for fixing his tire

Loading the bigass touring bike his daughter had custom built for him

A very sad corgi watching her new favorite human disappear up the sidewalk

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An “incredulous” federal judge questioned a proposed plea deal in the death of US Masters Champ Ethan Boyes.

Prosecutors said they were nearing a deal on a one-year misdemeanor sentence for the drunken crash that killed Boyes in San Francisco’s Presidio Park, reducing the charges to one count of unlawfully killing a human being without malice and without gross negligence.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle,

“Isn’t being intoxicated gross negligence in itself?” the judge said, incredulous.

That question, (Assistant U.S. Attorney George) Hageman said, was “up for interpretation.”

The judge replied that interpreting the severity of the alleged crime was Hageman’s job as federal prosecutor…

Eighty-one-year old Arnold Kinman Low is currently facing one count of vehicular manslaughter and one count of driving under the influence of alcohol in the fatal crash.

Felony vehicular manslaughter and felony DUI causing death could result in a maximum sentence of 16 years behind bars, while dropping the DUI count could reduce it to just 12 months.

For killing someone while too drunk to drive in a straight line.

Allegedly.

………

Los Angeles officials approved a five-year, $10 million contract with transit firm Tranzito to provide a series of integrated mobility hubs,

The firm will establish 13 of the centers throughout DTLA, Hollywood and Long Beach to provide “bike sharing, car sharing, secure bike parking and on-demand microtransit services” for first mile/last mile transportation from Metro  stations.

………

This is who we share the road with.

This is who we share the road with, part two.

Missouri Governor Mike Parsons sent a clear message that driving drunk and severely injuring a little kid is just no big deal, celebrating the Kansas City Chief’s Super Bowl win by commuting the DUI sentence of former Kansas City Chiefs Assistant Coach Britt Reid, son of head coach Andy Reid.

So if you ever wonder why people keep dying on our streets, that’s Exhibit A.

………

It’s now 76 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 33 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

Meanwhile, Pasadena is already launching its own ebike rebate, offering residents up to $750 for an e-cargo bike, or $1,000 for income-qualified residents.

So why is it taking California so damn long?

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

Momentum argues that anti-cycling zealots in Toronto would like to run over bicyclists just to save a little commuting time.

No bias here. An anonymous London school kid bemoans the “plagues of two-wheeled vermin” making them late for music lessons, but suggests the bright side to global warming is the torrential rains that free the road up for drivers.

And no bias here, either.

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

When you’re riding your bike in Capitola, California with an outstanding warrant while carrying meth and fentanyl, put some damn lights on it — and don’t try to pass yourself off as your sister.

A Madison, Wisconsin man was arrested for riding a stolen bicycle while on his way to the courthouse to be sentenced for a series of other burglaries — after he had already been banned from riding a bike.

When you’re carrying coke and a crack pipe on your bike in Kentucky, put some damn lights on it, already — and don’t jump off a roof to escape the cops.

An English town dealt with “anti-social cyclists,” as police responded to complaints from the public for such horrendous activities as riding without lights. Which isn’t exactly what I would describe as antisocial, but still. 

A clinically blind bicyclist in the UK was fined the equivalent of $253 for riding on a highway while “extremely” drunk, less than a year after he crashed into a passing car while riding under the influence. And giving a whole new meaning to being blind drunk.

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Local 

A homeless man in DTLA learns the hard way it ain’t easy to steal a robocab.

Ride On! Bike Shop/Co-Op founder Adé Neff describes how he was repeatedly stopped for Riding While Black in Beverly Hills because he “fit” a description of someone who had committed a crime. Read it on AOL if Bicycling blocks you.

The rich get richer, as Santa Monica pledges to improve its Vision Zero and Bike Action plans.

South Pasadena residents learn the hard way what happens when only seven people out of 104 bother to return a resident survey — and all of those ask for bike lanes on Grand Ave. And the city is apparently all out of temporary street paint. Thanks to Wesley for the heads-up.

Hermosa Beach is considering a proposal to geofence ebike rentals to prevent speeding on The Strand, as well as a proposal to ban ebikes entirely from the popular oceanfront walkway.

Long Beach plans to unveil a $60 million overhaul of Studebaker Road in East Long Beach to improve safety for pedestrians, bicyclists and, yes, drivers.

 

State

Caltrans is teaming with the California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA) to offer a new tool to address the inequitable distribution of transportation benefits and burdens, including mapping out crash rates.

Calbike promotes their upcoming Bicycle Summit Plenary in San Diego next month, saying it will promote the city’s bike cultures.

A California man rode 625 miles around Taiwan in twelve days, despite never riding for more than half an hour before his trip.

 

National

Road & Track offers the year’s best ebikes, as rated by Bicycling and reposted by AOL. Raising the question of why the hell does Bicycling even have a paywall?

Discover says ebikes may be expensive, but worth it for their health, equity and clean air benefits.

The case against a Salem, Oregon DEA agent for killing a woman on a bicycle after running a stop sign remains in legal limbo, pending an appeal to the Oregon Supreme Court over a decision to transfer the case to federal court, which would likely result in dropping the case.

Actor Matthew Modine leads a “ragtag” bicycle krewe to the Grand Canyon in the new fact-based dramedy movie Hard Miles.

A Colorado woman switched gears after a serious mountain biking crash, leaving her marketing job to become a nomadic artist.

Hoboken NJ credits removing parking spaces as one key factor for the city’s remarkable lack of traffic deaths for the last seven years.

Now you, too, can have a new limited edition DC-only Cherry Blossom Brompton.

Meet Charlotte NC bike lane sweeper Sweepy McSweepface.

A Georgia man was charged with hit-and-run for driving away after driving onto a sidewalk and leaving a 78-year old man riding a bicycle with life-threatening injuries, apparently while driving distracted.

 

International

London’s Evening Standard rates the best road bikes below £2,000 — the equivalent of $2,500.

Over 800 bicyclists took to the streets of London to call for safer infrastructure and streets for women bike riders.

Completing our London trifecta, a London business site questions whether the UK’s bike riders are really any safer after bike-friendly changes to the country’s Highway Code.

A campaign by disabled bicyclists in the UK tackles Shedgate, arguing that disabled riders should be allowed to build a bike shed in their front garden if they don’t have a back one, after several people were fined or ordered to remove them.

Over 35 percent the residents of Dutch cities Groningen and Amsterdam, and Copenhagen, Denmark ride a bicycle on a daily basis, compared to just 5% of Rome residents. Yet most American cities would be overjoyed by even the latter rate. 

Mumbai bicyclists plan a mid-March silent protest to demand safer streets for bicyclists, runners and pedestrians, in response to the bicycling death of former Intel India chief Avtar Saini, who is credited with the development of the Pentium processor; meanwhile, an Indian columnist calls for making the bicycling safe, for everyone’s sake.

An Aussie bicyclist credits his Apple Watch’s fall detection feature for saving his life after crashing with a ‘roo.

 

Competitive Cycling

Paris-Nice is already upon us, with American Matteo Jorgenson in 4th place, behind Laurence Pithie, Mads Petersen and Olav Kooij after three stages; Dutch cyclist Arvid de Kleijn got his first WorldTour win Monday, as his Tudor Pro Cycling team “broke their duck for 2024.” Which has to be one of the strangest terms I’ve heard in pro cycling, or anywhere else.

Evidently, the cycling world forgot the 2022 Strade Bianche, because history repeated itself with winners Lotte Kopecky and Tadej Pogačar once again winning the event two years later.

Giro and Dutch Team Visma/Lease a Bike have teamed for what has to be the weirdest looking, bizarrely futuristic aero bike helmet, which looks more like an AI rendering error.

NBA legend Reggie Miller may, in fact, be better on a mountain bike than you are, winning his first two races of the year this past weekend.

 

Finally…

Just because you’re legally required to wear a bike helmet doesn’t mean it can’t look like a dorky hat. That feeling when your bicycle looks like a bigass custom motorcycle.

And that feeling when it’s just a tad windy out there.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Firefighters union pledges 6-figure fight to keep LA roads deadly, and woman bicyclist critical after Belmont Shore collision

Just 320 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we face walking and biking on the mean streets of LA.

Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can. Just 60 signatures to go to reach 1,000!

………

Somehow, Los Angeles firefighters don’t seem to think LA’s wide street are wide enough.

Or that their trucks can manage to roll over a thin line of paint.

According to the Los Angeles Times, United Firefighters of Los Angeles City Local 112 plans to spend at least $100,000 to fight Measure HLA, the ballot measure that would make the city build out its already approved mobility plan whenever streets within the plan get resurfaced.

Union President Freddy Escobar said his organization, which represents about 3,400 firefighters, is concerned that the measure will lead to slower emergency response times and put new pressure on a city budget already experiencing financial strain. Firetrucks are already being hindered by “road diets” — reductions in vehicle lanes caused by the creation of bike or bus lanes, Escobar said in an interview.

“Every second counts. The road diets slow down our firefighters,” Escobar said. “And it will be so much worse with HLA.”

Like the road diet on Venice Blvd in Mar Vista, for instance. Which we were told was dangerously delaying responses from the local fire station after it was installed, until we learned that the average response for Mar Vista’s Station 62 was just four seconds more than the citywide average in the months following the road diet.

Because every second counts, evidently.

Never mind that when firefighters complain about road diets, they neglect to mention that while road diets reduce the number of traffic lanes, most contain a continuous center left turn lane large enough for firetrucks to zoom through any backed up traffic — actually making them more efficient for emergency vehicles than LA’s congested roadways.

Other major streets in the mobility plan are marked for bus lanes, which also present a perfect lane for emergency vehicles to bypass traffic more quickly than they can now.

Assuming no one is illegally parked in them, of course.

Or that one reason we’re told LA’s “protected” bike lanes are protected by nothing more than flimsy plastic posts is so emergency vehicles can drive over them whenever necessary.

Not to mention that most of the bike lanes in the mobility plan will feature nothing more than a thin stripe of white paint, which should hardly pose a barrier for a massive, multi-ton truck with huge wheels.

So the reality is that road diets, particularly the kind the would be created under HLA, would likely speed emergency response times, not slow them.

Which makes you wonder what the firefighters real complaint is.

Then there’s the simple fact that Measure HLA, and the mobility plan it’s based on, is designed to save lives by dramatically reducing the risk of life-threatening injuries and traffic deaths.

So maybe what they’re really worried about is that improved traffic safety could reduce the need for emergency responses.

And emergency responders.

Of course, Los Angeles isn’t the first city to face this type of manufactured conflict.

New York firefighters complained that city’s road diets and bike lanes were affecting response times, until the brass clarified that it ain’t necessarily so.

In fact, response times were better the year after bike lanes were installed on New York’s Columbus Ave than they were the year before.

San Francisco firefighters also complained about the city’s rapid installation of road diets, neighborhood greenways and bus and bike lanes. So city officials bought several slightly smaller fire trucks to enable them to better traverse San Francisco’s narrow, winding streets.

Not, say, our overly wide, straight and multilane boulevards.

Which makes it seem like the union’s real objection is less about reducing response times, and more about wanting to drive unhindered to and from the fire stations and their suburban — or even out-of-state — homes.

But in the end, it’s only appropriate, in this pre-Easter season, that the firefighter’s union will spend more than a hundred grand of their member’s dues to perform a miracle.

By turning their water into whine.

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Bad news from Long Beach, where a 32-year old woman is in stable but critical condition after she was struck by a driver while riding her bike.

The collision occurred at Second Street and Bay Shore Ave in the city’s Belmont Shore neighborhood at 8:15 pm Sunday.

The victim was reportedly making a left turn after the light had changed, when a driver went through the intersection on the red light, striking her.

A nearby doctor provided first aid until paramedics arrived.

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Um, okay.

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It’s now 56 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 31 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

A Dublin, Ireland mother was forced to give up bicycling after she was threatened with an £11 million fine — the equivalent of nearly $14 million — and two years behind bars for installing a small bike shed in her front garden to store her family’s bikes and her mother’s wheelchair.

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

New Jersey comedian Rich Kiamco was chased and beaten by a gang of teenaged bicycle riders, who ran him down to steal his ebike; police used the GPS on his bike to track down the thieves and recover his bike less than an hour after it was stolen.

A Singapore botanical garden urged bike riders to slow down, after a hit-and-run bicyclist on a road bike ran over a monitor lizard.

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Local 

It just keeps getting worse. Former Major League shortstop and current Oaks Christian School baseball coach Royce Clayton was busted for DUI early Sunday morning, just weeks after testifying about quaffing margaritas with wealthy socialite Rebecca Grossman and her then-lover, former Dodgers pitcher Scott Erickson, before she allegedly killed two little kids while speeding through a crosswalk.

Metro is looking for volunteers to help audit first mile/last mile connections for the Eastside Transit Corridor, the coming nine-mile extension of the E Line train.

Income-qualified Pasadena residents will be able to get a rebate of up to $1,000 on the purchase of an ebike starting July 1st, while other buyers will be able to claim $500 off a regular ebike, and $750 off an e-cargo bike. And chances are, California’s moribund ebike voucher program still won’t have launched by then.

 

State

Seriously? The replacement project for the Mission Bridge over the Santa Ana River between Riverside and Jurupa Valley has been pushed back until 2025 — but don’t worry, officials plan to protect bike riders by installing a couple of Share the Road signs along the dangerous roadway.

Santa Barbara will seek $32 million in state funds to build a new bike and pedestrian bridge over Highway 101.

The San Francisco Standard examines the proposals to ban kids from riding ebikes, while noting that US Consumer Product Safety Commission research shows it’s people 25 to 44 years old who are the most likely to end up in the ER as a result of an ebike crash — not kids.

 

National

The Manual says you should never buy a used mountain bike.

Once again, a bike rider was a hero, as a Washington state man was saved after driving off an embankment when someone passing by on a bicycle heard his moans and called 911; the driver was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries.

A Boulder, Colorado op-ed says bicycling isn’t inherently dangerous, but bad street design is. (Hint: Stop the page from loading to bypass the paper’s paywall).

Illinois IndyCar vet David Malukas will see his debut with the Arrow McLaren SP Racing team delayed a couple months, after dislocating his wrist in a mountain bike crash — or maybe tearing ligaments in his wrist; he now expects to start his season at April’s Long Beach Grand Prix.

An Arizona man is likely on his way back to prison after allegedly crashing a stolen box truck in Terre Haute, Indiana, and attempting to make his getaway on a stolen bicycle while naked from the waist down.

She may be onto something. A Baltimore bike rider questions whether cars are just a parasitic alien life form that makes people do their bidding.

 

International

Virgin founder Richard Branson claims bike riders need body armor, after his latest bike crash in the British Virgin Islands left him with a “nasty” road rash and a hematoma on his hip. So he and I finally have something in common (see photo).

Canada commits to stop funding large highway projects, concluding that the country’s current highways are sufficient to meet its needs.

No bias here. A London website says bicyclists will no longer have to annoy pedestrians by dismounting and walking their bikes across the city’s Hammersmith Bridge.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a Yorkshire, England van driver walked without a day behind bars for running down a bike rider from behind, after playing the universal Get Out Of Jail Free card by claiming the sun was in his eyes.

The Turkish founders of the annual, worldwide Fancy Women Ride have called an end to it, saying its goal of getting more women on bikes has been met. Although they may find the ride was easier to start than it will be to stop.

An EV website says Sydney, Australia needs to change its perspective and embrace cycling as a viable mode of transportation.

 

Competitive Cycling

A British Columbia paper says Svein Tuft, arguably Canada’s greatest road cyclist, is finally leaning to slow down after retiring at 41 when he lost his competitiveness, and began braking early to avoid injuries.

 

Finally…

That feeling when even the parking cops don’t care about a blocked bike lane. Forget a tandem, what could be more romantic than a bicycle built for five?

And we may have to worry about road-raging drivers, but at least we’re not likely to get shot after being mistaken for a bike-riding wild boar.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Spring completion for LA River bike path work, Park prevaricates on Measure HLA, and Long Beach 7th most bikeable US city

Just 326 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand LA Mayor Karen Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we face just walking and biking on the mean streets of Los Angeles.

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

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Happy International Winter Bike to Work Day 2024!

Or as we call it here in Los Angeles, Friday.

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Let’s start with a question about construction work on the LA River bike path.

In a comment yesterday, E. Lehrer asked,

Would you please help us out with an update on the work on the LA River bike path between the Zoo Dr. exit and Riverside Dr.?

Fortunately, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton’s provides near omniscience on subjects like this, writing last month that the work is scheduled to be finished this spring.

According to Linton, signage on site says it should be done by the end of this month. However, that’s likely to be delayed by this week’s rain, and could be delayed further by any future storms.

And that’s only if the city has its shit together, which is far from guaranteed.

………

Public radio station LAist offers an overview of the Healthy Streets LA ballot initiative in next month’s election, which has been endorsed by the Los Angeles Times, the LA Unified School District and a host of civic, social and worker organizations.

According to LAist,

This measure arrives after a year in which Los Angeles tallied more traffic deaths (337) than homicides (327). Moreover, critics say the city has ignored the law already on the books to make the streets safer for pedestrians and bicyclists…

Currently, the city is not close to achieving (its Vision Zero) goal of reducing deaths through needed street improvements. Measure HLA requires the city to make progress on the city’s Mobility Plan and to document it for the public.

The story also explains why Measure HLA, which is how the initiative is identified on the ballot, is necessary — my word, not theirs.

Michael Schneider, CEO of Streets for All, said that the measure is needed to spur compliance with the Mobility Plan. Eight years into the city’s 20-year-plan to make the streets safer, it has only implemented 5% of the plan.

“So if you do the math, that’s not a 20-year plan, that’s a 160-year plan,” he said. “Meanwhile, pedestrian deaths and just deaths from car crashes in general keep going up.”

CD10 Councilmember Heather Hutt announced her endorsement of the HLA initiative in next month’s election on Twitter/X yesterday.

On the other hand, CD11 Councilmember Traci Park appears to oppose the measure, after calling for a detailed report on the financial and structural impacts of Measure HLA.

She’s also asking for detailed reports on the measure’s impact on street resurfacing schedules, potential traffic changes, community outreach plans, funding strategies, and compliance with safety codes, in what appears to be an attempt to prevent its implementation by burying it in paperwork, even if it passes.

Park also claims the city has already implemented much iof the Mobility Plan, including more than 300 miles of bicycle lanes and other mobility elements.

Which has not happened.

Streetsblog’s Linton has kept a detailed log of the city’s bike lane mileage, showing just 222.7 miles of new LA bike lanes in the nine years since the Mobility Plan 2035 was adopted in 2016.

Much of which was not part of the Mobility Plan, which remains 95% unbuilt.

The city also counts sharrows as bike lanes, which studies show can actually increase the danger for bike riders. And it measures its annual output in lane miles, meaning bike lanes on each side of the roadway are counted separately.

So the real total is closer to 111 miles of roadway — much of which is low quality, if not actually dangerous.

It should also be noted that what Park is objecting to is not Measure HLA, but the Mobility Plan that was overwhelming approved by the LA City Council just nine years ago. And which was scheduled to be completed by 2035.

That’s before we were told it was merely “aspirational,” of course.

………

Redfin ranks the ten most bikeable cities in the US with a population over 200,000, none of which is Los Angeles.

Although Long Beach, with a population over 450,000, makes a surprising appearance at number seven, while San Francisco came in third behind Minneapolis and Portland.

Considering that Redfin is a real estate site, it’s worth noting that Minneapolis and Chicago are the most affordable cities on the list for home buyers, while Minneapolis and Portland are cheapest for renters.

So you can forward my mail to Minneapolis, when and if I ever hang up my hat.

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A UC Santa Barbara bicycle repair shop was named Best of the Year for Domestic Small Higher Education by Interior Design, which says the building doubles as a work of art.

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It’s now 50 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 31 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

A road-raging St. Petersburg, Florida woman faces charges for intentionally running over a man riding a bicycle, after using her car as a weapon by attempting to swerve into him several times before finally succeeding; fortunately, the victim only suffered a broken ankle.

No bias here. Brompton’s plans for a new eco-friendly, carfree HQ and factory hit an unexpected snag when British regulators ordered them to consider the poor, unfortunate folks who have no choice but to drive. Because evidently, bikes and shuttle buses aren’t a thing.

A Canberra, Australia driver says he’s had his issues with “the lycra-clad,” but finds it hard to argue against better bike lanes after witnessing the peak hour terror of lead-foot drivers zooming down painted bike lanes to bypass traffic.

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Local 

Longbeachize explains the coming 51st Street Greenbelt in North Long Beach, which will include a bikeway connecting the L.A. River bike path and the Daisy Lane Bike Boulevard.

 

State

A San Diego man was seriously injured when he reportedly rode his mountain bike off a San Ysidro sidewalk, and was hit head-on by a 20-year old driver; the victim suffered an open fracture of his right femur, concussion, fractured hand, cut over his eye, and had two teeth knocked out.

Thousands of bicyclists will roll through the Coachella Valley this weekend for the 26th Annual Tour de Palm Springs fundraising ride.

A San Jose auto shop owner faces charges for his role in an international bike theft ring, allegedly fencing high-end bicycles stolen in daytime burglaries for resale in Mexico.

 

National

Velo continues their backward gaze for Black History Month with a recap of the early Black bicycling heroes of the late 19th Century.

Cycling Weekly says sex no longer sells in advertising to a new generation of bicyclists. I’d argue that it never did, but bike brands were slow to catch on. 

Bicycling recommends the 17 best Valentine’s Day gifts for bicyclists, ranging from a bicycle-themed pizza cutter to a portable tube with built-in flint lighter to stash your joint. Read it on AOL this time if the magazine blocks you. 

There’s a special place in hell for whoever used a pickaxe to steal an ebike a Minneapolis woman who planned to use it to help with her multiple sclerosis, before she even had a chance to.

An Ohio bike shop owner takes issue with Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss recent Outside column asserting that there’s no good reason to buy a carbon bike.

A Manhattan website says horse carriages are being squeezed out of Hells Kitchen by the newly widened 10th Street bike lanes, after numerous complaints from bicyclists about the carriage drivers using the bike lanes instead of the roadway.

The New York Fire Department shuttered a bike shop accused of assembling fire-prone “Frankenstein” ebike batteries.

There’s not a pit in hell deep enough for the New Iberia, Louisiana driver who simply drove off after slamming into two people riding their bikes, killing one and critically injuring the other.

 

International

Cyclist offers advice and product recommendations to increase your average bicycling speed.

Bike Radar provides tips on bike commuting in cold and wet weather. Most of which applies here in LA, since it focuses on British rain instead of snow.

A UK petition calls for boosting the maximum assisted speed allowed on the country’s ebikes from 15.5 mph to 20 mph; the country currently follows the European Union regulations, despite leaving the EU four years ago.

That’s more like it. A 29-year old British driver was sentenced to 11 years behind bars, and banned from driving for a whopping 17 years, for the hit-and-run death of a young mother as she rode her bike while driving on the wrong side of the road at two and a half times the posted speed limit; he had multiple previous convictions, was driving without insurance and out on bail at the time of the crash. Just another example of officials keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late.

Dutch police are rolling out new roadside mobile road test benches to determine if an ebike violates power and speed limitations.

 

Competitive Cycling

Outside is screening Dear 39th Street online; the short film traces the rise of South Central LA native and L39ion of Los Angeles founder Justin Williams, who they say transcends cycling by leading his team to victory after victory.

Bicycling reports that 100-year old gold medal cyclist Charles Coste will carry the torch at the upcoming Paris Olympics. Once again, read it on AOL if the magazine blocks you.

Take it back, damn it! A writer for Velo says the Eddy Merckx bike line is relaunching, following two years away after the brand was purchased by the maker of Ridley bikes — then has the temerity to question whether anyone even remembers the legendary Cannibal.

A British cycling group has advised anyone participating in a time trial to observe the posted 20 mph speed limits wherever they apply. Which could result in a mass tie if organizers can’t manage to plan a course around them.

New Australian pro Rudy Porter became just the latest pro cyclist struck by a driver while on a training ride; the 23-year old cyclist was lucky to escape without serious injuries while riding on the southeastern coast of France.

 

Finally…

If you’re headed to the Bay Area for the big ride this weekend, don’t bother packing your clothes. Apparently, you’re not too old to be president if you can still ride a bike.

And Bicycling says bicycling doesn’t have to be a pain in the butt.

Except for their paywall, of course, which is one.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

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

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

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

………

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

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

………

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

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

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

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

Photo from Long Beach Police Department

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

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

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

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

Photo from Sierra Madre police department

………

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Thanks to Malcomb Watson for the heads-up. 

………

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

Mayor Bass wants to hear from us!

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

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

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

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

Click Here to Register

………

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

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

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

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

………

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

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

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

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

………

The Bambino was one of us.

………

Someone finally found a good use for a Tesla pickup.

………

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

………

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

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

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

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

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

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

………

Local 

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

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

Santa Monica police will be conducting yet another bike and pedestrian safety operation tomorrow, ticketing any violation that could put either group at risk, regardless of who commits it. So ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limits, so you’re not the one who gets written up.

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

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

 

State

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

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

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

 

National

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

International

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

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

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

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

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

 

Competitive Cycling

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

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

 

Finally…

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

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

https://twitter.com/nikicaga/status/1754270927339020360

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Newsom plugs budget hole with Active Transportation funds, and Los Angeles traffic deaths jump once again in 2023

My eye is finally better, so let’s catch up on what we’ve missed the past couple days. 

We’ve got a lot of ground to cover, so please accept my apologies in advance if I don’t acknowledge you for something you sent me.

I’ll try to make up for it next time. 

………

If you haven’t already, stop what you’re doing and sign this petition demanding a public meeting with LA Mayor Karen Bass to listen to the dangers we face just walking and biking on the streets of LA.

Then share it — and keep sharing it — with everyone you know, on every platform you can.

………

No surprise here, as Governor Gavin Newsom proposed filling an unexpected $38 billion budget shortfall in part by taking $200 million from the state’s already underfunded Active Transportation Program.

The governor’s new budget leaves just $850 million in the ATP, but borrows $200 million from future funding to avoid cutting currently budgeted projects.

Calbike says there’s no budget shortfall in the state’s transportation budget, which is stuffed with more money than ever before.

Meanwhile, the Southern California Association of Governments, aka SCAG, proposes spending a whopping $750 billion on traffic projects over the next 20 years.

Their project list included a whole 4,000 miles of bike lanes — which works out to just 200 miles a year, spread out among the seven-county SoCal region.

The rest of the funding will go overwhelmingly towards highway projects to encourage more driving.

Which is exactly what we don’t need to meet the state’s climate goals.

………

So much for Vision Zero.

KNBC-4 reports that LAPD figures show traffic deaths outpaced murders in the City of Angels last year.

The city saw 330 traffic deaths in 2023, a significant increase over 2022’s near-record numbers, “particularly fatal hit and runs and fatal pedestrian and bicycle collisions.”

At the same time, violent crime dropped 3.2%, with a total of “just” 327 murders.

The rise in traffic deaths comes as the city’s underfunded and under-implemented Vision Zero program was supposed to end traffic deaths by next year.

Instead, we’re further than ever from that goal, as people continue to die on our streets while our elected leaders do little or nothing about it.

………

A series of bike rides in cities around the world this Sunday will mark 100 days since the vicious Hamas attack on Israeli settlements, and the abduction of hundreds of people as hostages.

Rides are said ti be scheduled for Barcelona, Paris, London, Melbourne, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Czech Republic, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, among others, though I can find no record of a Los Angeles ride.

Bicyclists are encouraged to tie yellow ribbons to your bike on Sunday, even it you’re not participating in one of the organized rides.

https://twitter.com/Israel/status/1743945135602163795

Ed Rubinstein forwards plans for a solidarity ride in Dana Point.

Unfortunately, the link he sent to the Thousand Oaks ride has expired, and I can’t find any details for that one, either.

This Sunday, January 14, will mark 100 days since the October 7 attacks, and the kidnapping of hundreds.  As you may have heard the Israeli Premier Tech pro cycling team and the Israeli Cycling Federation has joined with Bring Them Home Now to organize bike rides in many cities worldwide calling for the release of the 129 remaining hostages. There is a ride planned in Thousand Oaks, but I am not aware of one in Orange County. So, my wife Leti and I decided to create a local alternative.

If you are not going to the big ride in Thousand Oaks, please join us this Sunday at 9:00 AM in Dana Point Harbor in the parking lot at the corner of Golden Lantern and Dana Point Harbor Drive to show your concern for the hostages.  We will provide yellow ribbons to tie on your bikes as a display of solidarity with the hostages.  Then we will take group photos that I will post on social media with the hashtag: #RideToBringThemHomeNow.  After the photos, there are multiple options for unsupported rides ranging from short 5-mile flat rides within the Harbor, a longer flat ride to San Juan Capistrano to a rolly 35+ mile ride to the north end of Camp Pendleton.

This is a digital word-of-mouth effort. You too are encouraged to let your friends know.  I have no idea about how large of a response I will get, so if you can let me know if you plan to attend.

Meanwhile, untold numbers of bike riders took part in a worldwide rally in support of Palestine last weekend.

………

More than a dozen wannabe bike burglars attempted to use a U-Haul truck to knock down the wall of a DTLA bike shop Saturday morning.

The thieves used the truck in an attempt to repeatedly batter their way into Just Ride L.A., near the corner of South Hill Street and Venice Blvd in the South Park neighborhood.

But despite their efforts, the wall held, saving the store from a loss that likely would have amounted to tens of thousands of dollars.

As it is, they’re looking at a $40,000 loss to replace the gate and repair the damage cause by the truck.

………

Long Beach may have seen Southern California’s first bicycling death of the year, after 43-year old Alecia McCullough was struck by a driver as she was crossing PCH Sunday night — the third death on SoCal’s killer highway in Long Beach this year.

One witness said she appeared to be riding a bicycle. However, there’s no confirmation of that, and no mention of a bike by the police.

………

Metro appears to have chosen Lyft to operate the Metro Bike bikeshare program.

………

21 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 30 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law, and counting.

………

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

The same bone-headed Florida website that somehow condemned “bike herds” in response to an elderly woman hitting a group of bicyclists while driving on the wrong side of the road, is now calling on readers to submit photos of bike riders behaving badly. Meanwhile, the editor goes out of his way to blame the victims of the mass crash, despite conceding that the driver was on the wrong side of the road, and the victims were obeying the law by riding two abreast. Notice also how effectively “bike herds” dehumanizes the victims. 

No bias here. Despite the recent panic over London’s floating bus stops, and reports that 60% of bike riders fail to stop for pedestrians moving to and from them, new leaked government documents show a low risk of bike riders actually hitting someone.

After a cabbie scared the crap out of an English bike rider by passing him just inches away, the local authorities apparently responded to the video by sending the driver a sternly worded letter. On the other hand, that’s more than they’d do here, where video isn’t accepted by the cops for anything less than a felony. 

Someone ripped out nearly all the reflective plastic bollards marking a cycle track in Mysore — or Mysuru — India, for no apparent reason.

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

British TV presenter Alex Phillip blamed “a little shit on a bike” for the attempted mugging that made her drop her phone.

A pair of Swiss tourists were fined $400 and had their bikes confiscated by authorities after mountain biking through one of New Zealand’s most famous heritage trails, where any kind of vehicle is banned, including bicycles.

………

Local 

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton makes the case that “it shouldn’t take sustained advocacy pressure (and injury lawsuits) from cyclists to get the city to keep its walk/bike paths in a state of good repair,” as the city belatedly begins repairs on a decrepit section of the LA River bike path.

Linton also visits a new parking-protected bike lane on Variel in Woodland Hills.

The Larchmont Buzz looks forward to next month’s CicLAvia on iconic Melrose Ave, calling CicLAvia “one of the coolest community events ever.” When they’re right, they’re right. 

Pasadena announced the completion of the Cordova Street Complete Streets project, including 1.5 mile buffered bike lanes.

Santa Monica cops will be conducting yet another bicycle and pedestrian safety operation today, ticketing anyone who commits a traffic violation that could put either at risk — even if it’s someone walking or riding a bike who does it. So once again, ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limit line, so you’re not the one who gets written up.

Speaking of Santa Monica, the NBA’s Toronto Raptors took to their bikes for a team building ride along the beach, as the team was in town for games against the Lakers and Clippers; new team member Immanuel Quickley said it was his first time riding a bike.

Long Beach received a $326,000 state grant to promote bike and pedestrian safety projects.

 

State

A bill in the state Senate Transportation Committee would eliminate the need for repetitive and costly traffic studies for bike lanes that have already been studied and approved along the California coast, reducing red tape and speeding construction, at least in theory.

Velo explains how California’s new law allowing bikes to proceed on the walk signal, instead of waiting for a green light, makes biking safer.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever burned down the ghost bike and memorial for Matt Keenan, who was killed by a driver in a head-on collision in San Diego’s Mission Valley in 2021; Keenan’s wife has started a crowdfunding campaign to raise money to replace it.

A San Diego doctor, ultra marathoner and triathlete says if ebikes are going to be allowed on the county’s trails, the trails will have to be improved and maintained so others don’t have to jump out of the way.

To the surprise of no one, stolen bikes were offered for sale on OfferUp and Facebook in San Diego, as Bike Index listed 331 bikes stolen in the city last year. Professional thieves often move hot bikes from one city to another, so it’s always possible that a bike stolen in LA could be sold in San Diego. Or Riverside, or anywhere else in Southern California.

Sad news from Carpinteria, where an 80-year old man riding a bike was killed by a driver; naturally, sheriff’s deputies blamed the victim for making an unsafe lane change. Oddly, though, it was the car’s rear windshield that was shattered in the crash.

San Francisco public TV station KQED says the bike lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge has an amazing view, and an uncertain future, after the expiration of the pathway’s four-year pilot program, and calls to return the lane to motor vehicles. Because we all know that cars are more important than people. 

Bike Talk’s Nick Richert talks with San Francisco Streetsblog about the city’s failed Vision Zero program.

The Bay Area’s BART commuter train system finally figured out that people who ride bikes sometimes need to ride trains, too, allowing people to take bikes on most escalators and trains.

 

National

Life is cheap in Colorado, where the driver who killed a 65-year old Minnesota man a third of the way through his lifetime goal of riding the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route got just nine months of work release, and was ordered to pay for a memorial for the victim.

Police in Kansas ask for the public’s help in identifying the victim injured in a collision while riding his bike. Yet another reminder to always carry ID with you when you ride — and preferably something that won’t get stolen if you’re incapacitated. 

A bike-riding Brooklyn man was busted on hate crime charges for throwing a rock at a Jewish man and yelling “Free Palestine!” Seriously, don’t do that. Passions are high enough without making thins worse.

A Baltimore woman brought an ice cream bike, and turned it into a $20,000 a month side hustle.

The Maryland legislature is considering a new bill that would increase the penalty for hitting someone riding in a bike lane to up to two months in jail and a fine of up to $2,000. Drivers should automatically be at fault for any crash with someone riding legally in a bike lane.

Atlanta announced a new program to give residents up to $2,000 to buy an ebike, depending on income level and type of bike. And chances are, they’ll run out of funding before California’s moribund program ever launches.

A retired Florida cop finished a 147-day, 5,000-mile bike ride from Vancouver to San Diego, then across the US to raise funds for children’s cancer research.

 

International

Momentum lists the top 10 reasons to buy an ebike this year. Unless you’re counting on California’s moribund ebike incentive program, in which case you’re probably screwed. 

A Canadian legal site asks if allowing bike riders to run stop signs would make the roads safer. Except by definition, it’s not running the stop sign if it’s legal to treat it as as a yield, as in the Idaho Stop Law.

Newly released records show Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer — the equivalent of our Treasury Secretary — slashed funding for active transportation after buying into crackpot conspiracy theories about the 15-minute city.

Ireland announced plans to build a nearly 2,200-mile bike network over the next 16 years, which will connect more than 200 cities, towns and villages with over 5,000 residents. That’s the second-best reason, after the whiskey, for a little reverse migration if things continue to devolve here.

Shimano has applied for a patent to use trainable AI to automatically control mountain bike suspensions and dropper seat posts.

 

Competitive Cycling

Ranchers near the mountain town of Steamboat Springs, Colorado, say they weren’t informed about the annual SBT GRVL race, and want the number of participants capped — even though race organizers held a series of public forums, and already cap the number of riders who can take part. Apparently, they don’t understand the meaning of “annual,” either. 

Pro-Palestinian protestors delayed the start of the Australian road cycling championships in an effort to target Israel–Premier Tech cyclist Simon Clarke.

 

Finally…

Blue legs and bike shorts on a cold winter’s day. Who needs an ebike when you can have your very own e-snowboard.

And you could have been the proud owner of Pee-wee Herman’s 1953 Schwinn DX Cruiser, not for “a hundred million, trillion, billion dollars,” but for the low, low price of $140,001.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Move along, nothing to see here

Due to another commitment, I won’t be posting a new Morning Links for Tuesday.

But barring any unexpected developments, we’ll be back bright and early Wednesday to catch up on anything we missed.

Like what may or may not have been Southern California’s first bicycling death of the year, because the victim may or may not have been riding a bike.

Either way, SoCal’s killer highway has claimed yet another life.

Or three.

Murder charge in Cervantes hit-and-run, Major Taylor Congressional medal, and bike rider injured in Texas mass shooting

It’s Day 14 of the 9th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Sadly, there were no donations yesterday. Which means you now have just 17 days left to help keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day. 

So seriously, stop what you’re doing and give now!

………

Murder.

That’s what a 16-year old boy has been charged with after allegedly intentionally running down a bike-riding man in Long Beach last summer.

The teenager, who hasn’t been publicly named due to his age, is charged with killing 29-year old Leobardo Cervantes in a high speed hit-and-run July 9th.

Cervantes was riding at at the intersection of California Ave and Harding Street in Long Beach when he was struck with the boy’s car, who reportedly used it as a weapon to attack Cervantes.

He died from his injuries two weeks later.

There’s no word on why the boy slammed his car into Cervantes bike, or what evidence led investigators to conclude the act was intentional.

However, it follows a series of similar attacks on bicyclists by teenaged drivers stretching from Huntington Beach to Las Vegas.

The driver was arrested in jail, where he was already being held on other charges.

………

Days left to launch the California ebike incentive program as promised this fall: 14

………

About damn time.

Major Taylor could finally get the recognition he deserved in his lifetime, 92 years after his death.

The Black cycling champ, who dominated the bike racing world at a time when he couldn’t dine or ride in the same train car with the white riders he’d just beaten, could be honored with a posthumous Congressional Gold Medal.

Illinois Congress member Jonathan L. Jackson will introduce a bill today to honor Taylor, which would make him only the second bicyclist to receive one, following America’s only remaining Tour de France winner.

Let’s hope it’s something our severely divided Congress can actually agree on.

………

A person riding a bicycle was lucky to survive the country’s latest mass shooting.

Or make that the second-latest, anyway.

The bike rider was wounded as part of a day-long shooting rampage through the streets of Austin, Texas on Tuesday, which resulted in the deaths of four people, and wounded two Austin police officers, in addition to the bicyclist.

Thirty-four-year old Shane James was taken into custody following a police chase after shooting the cop.

No reason was given for the shootings.

But it’s yet another reminder that cars aren’t the only things killing people on our streets.

………

Help clean up the Venice Blvd bike lanes next Saturday.

………

‘Tis the season.

Men’s Journal recommends “great gift ideas” for bicyclists, including the kind who don’t go anywhere.

For the second time in four years, a kindhearted 13-year old North Carolina boy gave up his own birthday present to buy a new bicycle for a kid’s Christmas present.

………

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

No bias here. A group of New York demonstrators gathered to demand license plates on ebikes, because someone “almost” got hit by someone riding one. Just wait until they hear about cars, which already have plates and hit a hell of a lot more people — and do far more damage when they do.

A Toronto bike lawyer complains about city officials ignoring mounting traffic violence, while prosecuting bicyclists for speeding in a public park.

A 35-year old English driver was sentenced to life in prison for the vehicular murder of a 23-year old man, after driving up on the sidewalk to kill the victim as he sat on his bike, then responding with a laughing face to a post about the victim’s injuries; he’ll have to serve at least 20 years before he’s eligible for parole. Which will be 20 years too soon.

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

An LAPD officer was reportedly injured when someone riding with a group of bicyclists allegedly shined an “industrial strength laser” at the cop near LA Live in DTLA; no word on the condition of the officer of if any arrests have been made.

A British man has been jailed for riding his bike, after he rode to a probation meeting despite being legally prohibited from using a bicycle or e-scooter, following multiple assaults against women after riding up to them; he’ll serve 11 months behind bars for violating the ban at least twice.

………

Expressionist artistic image of corgi riding a bicycle

………

Local 

Families are invited to the free Youth Mountain Bike Demo Days at Santa Clarita’s new Trek Bike Park.

A Santa Monica letter writer complains about concrete curb-protected bike lanes, arguing that the white plastic car-tickler bollards are better because they don’t trap riders and debris in the bike lane. On the other hand, they don’t keep cars out, either. 

 

State

San Diego Magazine gets right to the good stuff, with recommendations on where to grab a cold brew after a hot ride. Or a cold ride, for that matter.

The Bay Area’s BART transit system will now allow people with bicycles to carry their bikes on escalators, and use most train cars starting January 1st; bikes are currently banned from all but the last three cars, and riders are forced to carry them up and down stairs.

Oakland will pay a 57-year old man $6.5 million dollars after he suffered spinal and brain injuries when he hit a seam in the pavement as he rode downhill in a new bike lane; Oakland officials were aware of the dangerous conditions after receiving numerous complaints, but chose to ignore it.

 

National

Now that you can send direct messages on Strava, Bicycling offers advice on how to safeguard your inbox. Good advice, since this could turn out to be just another way to harass female riders, as well as others. Read it on AOL this time if the magazine blocks you. 

Cycling Weekly calls Ass Savers new clip-on mudguard the best $27 bike accessory you can buy.

If you build it, the will come. Bicycling rates increased nearly 150% on weekdays and 50% on weekends in just six months after Seattle installed a new two-way semi-protected bike lane, while walking rates nearly doubled.

A new report from a public-private partnership at the University of Washington provides a road map showing how cities can plan for large-scale adoption of cargo ebikes.

Colorado-based mountain bikemaker Guerrilla Gravity has gone out of business, and is liquidating its manufacturing equipment.

A group of Houston bike advocates turned out to urge the city’s next mayor to build more bike lanes, whoever that turns out to be following a runoff election.

That’s more like it. An Ohio man was sentenced to 12 to 17.5 years behind bars for the drunken hit-and-run that killed a 60-year old man as he was riding his bike on the sidewalk. Yes, the sidewalk.

New York repealed a decade-old law that created needless legal barriers to building bike paths, resulting in unnecessary delays.

After riding mountain bikes for the past 20 years, a Blue Ridge Mountain man says he prefers gravel now that he’s getting up there.

A Florida bike shop gave a 40-year old man a new bike after his was destroyed by a hit-and-run driver.

 

International

If you build it, they will come, too. London bicycling rates are up 20% compared to pre-pandemic times, after the city went on a massive bike lane binge.

A pair of Scottish craftsmen are teaming with bikewear brand Endura to recreate the world’s first pedal bicycle.

Four years of the Black Unity Bike Ride brought Brits out to ride for racial justice.

A British website examines the anatomy of the successful Stop Killing Cyclists campaign as a model for other protests.

A new German company is on a mission to make bike cargo trailers cool again.

Bike ridership rates have nearly doubled in Estonia’s capital city over the past year, with bike riders now accounting for nearly ten percent of traffic at some city intersections.

I want to be like him when I grow up. An 89 year old New Zealand man has put over 12,000 miles on his ebike since buying it four years ago. Another reminder of the benefits ebikes can have for elderly people, who might not be able to ride regular bikes. 

 

Competitive Cycling

Former Tour de France winner, admitted doper and successful cycling team leader Bjarne Riis is finally retired from the sport, and is now living in Switzerland and selling heat pumps imported from Lithuania.

Pink Bike and Scott profile four-time National Champ and 2021 Olympic mountain biker Erin Huck, who manages to combine professional cycling with being mother to a young toddler.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you’re banned for doping from seniors tandem racing. If you’re delivering meth on your bike, stop for the damn stop sign, already.

And now we’re getting somewhere. Grand Theft Auto, the video game dedicated to glorifying vehicular violence, now has bike lanes.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Update: Man riding bike killed in Long Beach crash; 13th SoCal bike rider killed in past 3 weeks

Please make it stop.

For the 13th time in the last 22 days, someone was killed riding a bicycle on the deadly streets of Southern California.

This time in Long Beach.

And just hours after another woman died in Santa Monica.

According to My News LA, a man was struck by a driver around 3:20 Saturday afternoon, while riding on Pacific Ave at Wardlow Road in front of the Metro Wardlow A Line station in west Long Beach.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, died after being taken to a local hospital.

The driver stayed at the scene, and cooperated with investigators.

Unfortunately, that’s all we know at this time.

This is at least the 48th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 14th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also the fourth person killed riding a bicycle in bike-friendly Long Beach in 2023.

Update: At least now we know what happened. 

According to KCBS-2, the victim was riding across Pacific Place north of Wardlow when he was struck by a pickup driver traveling east on Pacific. He was struck with the side of the pickup, despite the driver’s attempt to swerve. 

Based on the description, it seems likely he was attempting to leave the Metro station, with no traffic signal or crosswalk to get across the roadways safely.

The driver, identified only as a 43-year old Long Beach resident, remained at the scene and attempted to resuscitate the victim before paramedics arrived. She reportedly cooperated with investigators, who said she did not appear to be distracted, impaired or speeding at the time of the crash. 

Anyone with information is urged to call the Long Beach Police Department at 562/570-7355. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and his family.

 

Disappointing new LA bike lane totals, Angelenos suffer from car blindness, and Long Beach needs bike count volunteers

It just keeps getting worse. 

I’m told someone was killed riding a bike yesterday on Fountain Ave in East Hollywood.

If it’s confirmed — and it comes from an unimpeachable source — this will be the ninth SoCal bike rider killed in just 12 days.

Hopefully, we’ll learn more soon. 

Today’s photo, in contrast with too much of the day’s news, is a very happy corgi enjoying a pedicab ride over the new 6th Street Bridge during Sunday’s CicLAvia. 

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Streetsblog’s Joe Linton takes his semi-annual deep dive into bike lane building, or the lack thereof, in the City of Angels.

And finds the current results underwhelming, with far too many disappointments including truncated mileage, downgraded facilities, long delayed timelines and false claims, just to name a few.

Or as we call that here in Los Angeles, Wednesday.

As noted in past posts (FY21-22, FY20-21, FY19-20), not all bikeway miles are equal. Quality protected bike lanes and bike paths serve riders aged 8 to 80, while sharrows serve almost nobody. New bikeway mileage expands the network; upgrades to existing bikeways do not. Among upgrades, some are significant (protecting unprotected lanes) and others are nearly meaningless (adding a buffer stripe to an existing lane).

In recent years, around a quarter of the city’s output consists of these less than newsworthy facilities. Among the city’s FY23 totals are about 6 miles of new sharrows and 5 miles of buffer stripes added to existing bike lanes.

The city’s FY22-23 total of 45.2 miles breaks down into 27.7 miles of newbikeways and 17.5 miles of upgrades to existing bikeways. This represents a slight improvement over last year, which saw 26.6 new bikeway miles and 12.5 upgraded miles.

That’s a far cry from the city’s commitment to build 50 miles of bike lanes a year when the current bike plan was approved. Which was quickly cut in half when the city switched to measuring by lane miles, which counts bike lanes on each side of the road separately.

Then reduced further, when they decided sharrows count, too.

Adding disappointment, on disappointment, on disappointment.

……..

Streets For All founder Michael Schneider writes that we suffer from car blindness in Los Angeles.

We are car blind in Los Angeles; as a City, we seem to have accepted cars as essential for society to function, and we overlook their downsides and harms they cause on our society.

Cars are the single biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions in California, and car crashes are a leading cause of death for children in Los Angeles. Our streets are so dangerous that a pedestrian is killed about once every three days — a rate that is four times the national average.

I’ve often said this city’s problem is we can’t see the cars for the traffic.

So it’s worth taking a few minutes to read the whole thing, because he’s absolutely right.

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Long Beach is still looking for volunteers for this week’s bike and pedestrian count.

https://twitter.com/GoActiveLB/status/1714350821574656418

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Metro is hosting a series of meetings beginning in Westwood next Tuesday to discuss the Traffic Reduction Study, Sepulveda Transit Corridor, and I-405 Sepulveda Pass ExpressLanes projects

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ActiveSGV will host a discussion with Strong Towns founder Chuck Marohn and current Pasadena Planning Commissioner Rick Cole at Throop Church in Pasadena tonight.

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Sounds like fun.

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SAFE offers a reminder that bike riders aren’t the only vulnerable victims of traffic violence.

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Nailed it.

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

No bias here. A San Francisco restaurant owner says the Valencia Street business corridor will die if the controversial center-line bike lane on the street isn’t removed.

A Flushing, New York letter writer with a bad case of windshield bias says riding a bicycle in traffic is a horrible idea, whether or not it’s in a bike lane, and everyone but drivers deserve tickets for breaking the law.

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

A San Mateo bike rider was arrested for brandishing a weapon after a woman tried to pass a large group of bicyclists in the downtown area; he raised his shirt to show the weapon in his waistband when a group of riders surrounded her car and started beating on it.

………

Local 

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton offers photos from Sunday’s Heart of LA CicLAvia.

A South Pasadena site looks forward to the first Arroyo Fest in 20 years, as the 110 Freeway prepares to close to motor vehicle traffic for a few hours on October 29th to welcome thousand of people walking, biking, running, scooting and rolling.

Garden Grove has received a $441,000 Caltrans grant to improve the city’s Medal of Honor Bike Trail.

 

State

The LA Times says the recent legislative session was mixed bag when it comes to fighting climate change, noting that Governor Newsom signed bills supporting electric cars and hydrogen fuels, but vetoed bills to improve bicycle safety.

A UC San Diego student asks if roads around the campus will ever be safe, years after a protected bike lane was approved for Gilman Drive, but never built.

San Bernardino’s Skypark Bike Park announced the opening of a new Black Diamond mountain bike trail.

A 34-year-old Victorville man faces narcotics and gun charges after a bike theft victim tracked his stolen bike to a city bus, where the man had taken it.

A series of new traffic diverters and islands on Santa Barbara’s Sola Street are aimed at creating a safe bicycling link between the Westside and downtown.

The San Francisco Standard examines why the city so rarely enforces illegal parking in bike lanes. You could ask the same question in Los Angeles and Santa Monica, too. 

Tragic news from Napa County, where a pair of bicyclists were killed when the load shifted on a passing lumber truck, striking the victims as they rode on the side of the roadway; the victims were identified only as a man in his 50s and a woman in her 40s.

 

National

The Guardian considers whether it’s time to ban right turns on red lights, as pedestrian deaths soar. Short answer, yes. Longer answer, oh hell yes.

Good question. Adventure Rider asks why mountain bikes cost as much as motorcycles these days.

Sports Illustrated recommends the best bike shorts for women who actually ride bikes. As opposed to the trendy bike short-style shorts for women who don’t. 

The new Portland Bicycle School is offering riders the bicycle equivalent of Driver’s Ed.

A Las Vegas high school student says he was forced to withdraw from school after he was threatened by the sister of one of the two teens charged in the vehicular murder of former Bell, California police chief Andy Probst, after she apparently suspected he was the source who turned video of the crash over to police; meanwhile, the 72-year old bike rider who was injured in the hit-and-run crime spree describe the crash that left him with road rash and knee pain.

Heartbreaking news from the Denver area, where residents of Littleton demanded safety improvements after a boy was killed in a collision while riding his bike to middle school.

Accused killer Kaitlin Armstrong’s recent failed escape attempt was apparently premeditated, as a Texas site notes that she exercised vigorously for months and wore civilian clothes in advance of a doctor’s appointment; Armstrong is accused of fatally shooting gravel cycling star Moriah “Mo” Wilson over an imagined love triangle.

A new Brooklyn book bike is fighting book bans by serving the gay and nonbinary community, bringing free LGBTQIA+ books for all ages and languages directly to them.

New York officials blamed the increase in bicycling deaths on ebikes, with 62.2% of bicyclists killed in the city this year riding one, compared to 57.9% two years ago and 47.4% last year — but failed to provide any stats putting it in context, such as the proportion of ebike riders, or who was at fault in the crashes; meanwhile, 94% of this year’s deaths occurred on streets without protected bike lanes, calling into question the mayor’s failure to fulfill his campaign promise to build more.

New York bike riders say they’re fighting over inches on the city’s crowded bridges, where narrow bikeways contribute to bike-on-bike crashes.

A New Jersey man faces a manslaughter charge for allegedly pushing a 70-year old man off his bike, for no apparent reason; the victim died after hitting his head on the pavement and initially refusing treatment. A tragic reminder to always get checked out after hitting your head, because life-threatening injuries may not show up until hours later. 

The Washington Post says forget buying another car, and get an ebike instead.

 

International

Streetsblog admires the quick build bike lanes of Lima, Peru, which enabled residents to keep active during the pandemic, and to keep riding now.

Bicycling tells the tale of a Canadian man who set off on a bikepacking tour around the world with his six-year old border collie, who was just three months old when they set off. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

Another Canadian man is riding his bike around the world to share lessons in physics with teachers and students.

Oxford, England will install speed cams at a dangerous roundabout where a bike-riding university researcher was killed by a coked-up dump truck driver last year, although a city counselor says a license plate reader will be required to catch scofflaw drivers, too.

A woman in the UK says she and her husband tried swapping their car for an e-cargo bike, but unwelcoming drivers forced them off the road and onto smaller hybrid bikes.

A British man will spend the next four years behind bars for killing another man with a single punch, after an argument over the sale of a bike, as he claimed the victim’s friend still owed him money for it. Yet another reminder than no bicycle is worth a human life. 

Hyderabad, India is installing solar panels over 13 miles of bike paths, fighting climate change through solar power, while providing riders with shade to combat the city’s frequent heat waves.

An Arab Israeli bike shop owner has received the equivalent of almost $168,000 in donations after his shop was torched because he donated 50 bicycles to Jewish kids forced to evacuate following the recent Hamas attack.

A new e-cargo bike premiering at the Taipei Cycle Show claims to be the first designed by women for women, with a smaller frame designed to accommodate shorter riders.

More heartbreaking news, this time from Down Under, where a 72-year old man was killed by a driver while participating in a club ride, seven years after he survived a crash that killed one man, and injured both him and another rider.

 

Competitive Cycling

Another WorldTour cyclist is walking away due to a health conditions, as Dutch pro Wesley Kreder retired at age 32 after suffering a heart attack.

Velo considers 32-year old Ethiopian pro cyclist Tsgabu Grmay and his efforts to help more of his countrymen and women enter the sport.

 

Finally…

Never trust a sat-nav device that doesn’t know you’re not a car. Maybe flipping a modern day Penny Farthing isn’t the best idea.

And how not to promote a gravel race.

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My most humble apologies for neglecting to thank Megan L for her generous donation to support this site when my eyes were out of commission last month. As always, donations are welcome and very appreciated anytime, for any reason, even if I’m too blind to properly show my gratitude.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin