Tag Archive for Los Angeles City Council

Los Angeles finally lowers speed limits on some streets, and “woke” repeal of Seattle bike helmet mandate

It might be time to check snow conditions in the underworld.

For the first time in memory, if not ever, Los Angeles officials overruled drivers right feet for setting speed limits, slightly lowering limits on 177 miles of LA streets.

And reversing, if ever so slightly, the ever-climbing speed limits forced on them by the deadly 85th Percentile Law.

The move came in response to legislation sponsored by Burbank state Assemblymember Laura Friedman, which allows cities to drop speed limits no more than five mph.

Which isn’t the legislation we need to repeal the 85th Percentile Law. But it’s a start.

Now we just have another 6,323 miles of streets to go.

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They get it.

https://twitter.com/NACTO/status/1496190934572273666

Not everyone does, though.

Curmudgeonly conservative Seattle shock jock Jason Rantz appeared on Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show to complain that it’s just one more example of “everything is racist.”

Rantz accuses a “woke” professor of using a small sample size to show the law disproportionately ticketed people of color, while suggesting that some of those ticketed were probably just homeless people on stolen bicycles, anyway.

Schmuck.

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She gets it, too.

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A reminder about Walk ‘n Rollers upcoming 10th Anniversary celebration next month.

The Culver City-based organization deserves a lot of credit for teaching kids how to walk and ride safely.

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This may just be the coolest 100-year old bike I’ve ever seen.

https://twitter.com/CoolBikeArt1/status/1496194085618655232

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GCN considers whether a British company’s move to ban bike helmets for its delivery riders is science, or just plain stupid.

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

No bias here. An Italian bike rider was fined the equivalent of $380 after he was nearly doored by a careless cop, because bicyclists aren’t required to wear a Covid mask in the country, but pedestrians are — which he became when he got off his bike to argue the point with the cop.

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Local

Glendale police busted three men for attempting to steal bicycles from an underground parking facility at the Americana at Brand shopping center.

Norwalk has dropped the final draft of its proposed bicycle master plan.

 

State 

Calbike comes out agains AB 371, which would effectively end bikeshare and e-scooter rentals by imposing an “unprecedented insurance requirement,” after killing a similar proposal two years ago.

PeopleForBikes announces the schedule and speakers for next month’s Bicycle Leadership Conference in Dana Point.

Business owners in San Diego’s North Park neighborhood continue to complain about lost business due to the removal of parking spaces for a protected bike lane on 30th Street, even though a nearby parking structure remains underutilized. Which suggests the real problem isn’t the bike lane, but drivers who are unwilling to pay for parking.

A Folsom letter writer says it’s time to allow bicycles on an 11-mile local trail, since mountain bikers outnumber equestrians in the area.

 

National

As if the company didn’t have enough problems these days, Peloton users were faced with a major service outage yesterday.

That’s more like it. Denver traffic engineers and planners took up a wheelchair-bound woman’s challenge to walk with her to see what her daily experience on the streets was really like.

Colorado is considering a bill to legalize the full Idaho Stop Law, which would allow bike riders to treat stop signs like yields, and red lights like stop signs. The state currently has a confusing patchwork of local ordinances that allow riders to roll stops in one jurisdiction, while risking getting ticketed for the same thing in the next.

Bighearted students at an Iowa community college dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a cafeteria worker, after discovering his was worn out.

A Chicago chef feels vindicated after a jury awarded her over $212,000 for the dooring that left her seriously injured with a concussion, contusions and other injuries.

Get $900 off the provocatively named, Detroit-made Babymaker II ebike.

Bicycle Retailer says there’s still hope the dilapidated building that housed the Wright Brothers first bike shop could be saved, despite a Dayton, Ohio committee approving a permit to raze it.

Police in New York arrested an ambulance driver for the hit-and-run that killed a beloved teacher last year, while he was driving a Rolls-Royce that he may have rented; he also seriously injured a bike rider in another crash in 2017.

Kindhearted North Carolina sheriff’s deputies bought a nine-year old girl another bicycle, after one they bought for her following her involvement in a hostage situation was stolen.

There’s a special place in hell for an Alabama man who’s charged with sexually abusing a young child, two years after killing a bike rider in a collision.

 

International

Pink Bike examines why bike companies are changing hands like playing cards these days.

After discovering how essential bicycles are in Havana, a travel writer overcomes his childhood fears and learns to ride one to discover the other side of the Cuban city.

More on the move by Paris to install traffic cam-like noise sensors to detect and photograph loud vehicles in an effort to reduce noise levels, calling it a public health issue. Can we please have those here in Hollywood? Pretty please?

Aussie bicyclists are being urged to log their crashes and near misses on an app to provide data for researchers attempting to understand how and why collisions happen, and how to prevent them.

 

Competitive Cycling

About damn time. The 2022 Tour of Flanders will offer equal prize money to men and women, joining a worldwide movement to towards equal purses.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to use a stolen credit card to buy an $8,200 bike, don’t leave a paper trail stretching from New York to Pittsburgh and back. That feeling when a tree swallows your bike, and a myth grows along with it.

And I still want a damn Pashley Guv’nor, already.

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

LA adopts redistricting plan, PA man dies after being tased 8 times for riding bike, and Peloton’s Big PR nightmare

Just two weeks left in the 7th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to Joseph R, Brian N and Joshua T for their generous donations to keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your favorite screen every morning.

That makes 50 donations in just two weeks — a full week ahead of last year’s record pace!

So don’t wait. Give now via PayPal, or with Zelle to ted @ bikinginla.com.

Any amount, no matter how large or small, is truly and deeply appreciated. 

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The LA City Council has approved final redistricting maps that will take effect January 1st.

You can find your new district here.

At first, I thought I’d been disenfranchised by the council, who moved CD5 Councilmember Nithya Raman out of much of her old district, and away from many of the people who elected her.

Instead, it looks like I’m still there, if barely.

Meanwhile, there’s an active campaign going on in nearby CD5, where pseudo-environmentalist Paul Koretz has gone out of his way to block bike lanes contained in the city’s mobility plan for far too long. And who will thankfully be termed out this year.

Fortunately, there’s a long list of candidates running to replace him, most of whom appear to support bikeways and safer streets.

I’ve already endorsed Scott Epstein, who I’ve known for years as a friend, and for his work on the Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee and chairing the Mid City West Community Council.

But I’m always open to hearing from other candidates.

Anyone running for office in CD5, or any other Los Angeles council district, is welcome to submit a guest post outlining their positions on bicycling, transportation and safe streets.

Then again, that same offer goes for any other LA elected office, or any other city in the LA area.

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Unbelievable.

A Pittsburg, Pennsylvania man is dead, after being tased by cops eight times for the crime of test riding a used bike, apparently without permission.

According to a local TV station, 54-year old Jim Rogers — no relation — took a bicycle that was being sold for 50 bucks on someone’s front yard, then returned it after riding around the block.

Why that required a massive police response, let alone lethal force, I will never understand.

And any ostensibly non-lethal weapon can easily become lethal when it is used repeatedly on someone in a short period of time.

Some witnesses reported that Rogers became aggressive after police arrived, while others reported him begging them to stop.

To make matters worse, officers told arriving paramedics to go away, then loaded Rogers into a patrol car — and inexplicably drove past one hospital to reach another one further away, as he slumped unconscious in the back seat. The cops reportedly said they thought he was sleeping.

He died the next day.

Let’s hope his family has a good lawyer. Then again, even a crappy one could probably win this case.

Meanwhile, four cops now face firing for the incident, with two others staring at well-deserved demotions.

Hopefully that includes the cop who fired his taser eight times, and needed two tries to get through the police academy.

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Spoiler alert.

Peloton discovers that feeling when their high-profile product placement unexpectedly turned into a PR nightmare.

Skip this one if you’re still planning to watch the first episode of the new Sex and the City reboot, though.

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Finish the week with a little gravel grinding.

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Join Active SGV for the return of their annual holiday ride on Saturday.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1469033860147077121

Meanwhile, the LACBC is hosting a family-friendly ride through Maywood and South Gate along the LA River the same day.

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If you’re up near Santa Barbara this weekend, stop by the bike yard sale to find all the stuff you need, and probably won’t get for the holidays.

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Here’s your chance to become a certified bike instructor.

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‘Tis the season.

A Boise, Idaho public radio station talks with the executive director of the Boise Bicycle Project, which is planning to give 500 bicycles to local kids.

A bike shop owner in Iowa is donating 14 upcycled bicycles to a local Christmas club for kids in need.

An Illinois bike shop owner is donating 60 refurbished bikes to a state children’s home.

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

A North Dakota man managed to slip the cops as he fled a traffic stop on his bike. But was busted anyway, after he kicked in the door of a random apartment and barricaded himself in the bathroom.

Oakland is repairing a public Christmas tree in Jack London Square that was torched by a bike-riding arsonist.

 

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Local

This site’s not the only one begging for money this month. If you have anything left over after donating to the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive, give a little to LA Streeetsblog, too.

 

State

SANDAG’s proposed 70-mile regional bike lane system will now cost more than double the original estimate, cover 10% fewer miles and take longer to finish.

The Voice of San Diego says forget the debate over proposed road usage fees, and focus on making the transportation changes we need to save the planet, and ourselves.

 

National

A new report surprisingly suggests it would only take a minimal investment to restore American bicycle manufacturing, despite losing over 97% of bike building to overseas factories.

The Adventure Cycling Association is looking for a Safety Manager to join their advocacy team to work for better safety on US Bicycle Route System.

WaPo talks with the former chief of strategy and innovation for Seattle’s DOT; Benjie de la Peña predicts shared micromobility will continue to grow as an alternative to traffic-choked commutes.

Las Vegas hosts a police-escorted ghost bike ride along the Las Vegas strip this morning on the anniversary of the meth-fueled massacre that took the lives of five people riding their bikes last year. Which got the stoned truck driver who killed them a well-deserved 16 to 40 years behind bars.

Police in New York are on the lookout for a pair of strong-arm robbers on a two-month crime spree targeting low-income, often immigrant, delivery riders for their ebikes.

That’s more like it. A New York community board says don’t bother arguing against the need for bike lanes, just tell them where the lanes should go.

A proposed remake of a Brooklyn street would create New York’s first bicycle superhighway. Which is one more than Los Angeles, which has exactly none on the drawing board.

A Maryland TV station talks with DC’s one-wheeled Grubhub delivery rider.

 

International

Bike Radar recommends the best winter-weight mountain bike jerseys to keep you warm on the trails, while Cycling News considers the best truck-mounted bike racks for your car.

A tiny new automotive-style shifter could allow you to bang through the gears on your electronic derailleur.

No surprise here, as plans to expand ebike access in Canada’s Banff National Park are drawing fire.

London is banning e-scooters from all forms of public transit after one burst into flames on a train last month.

Twelve percent of Brits want to find a new bike under the tree this year.

Germany’s new food and agriculture minister is one of us, eschewing the standard black limo to arrive at the country’s presidential palace on a bicycle.

A 25-year old, visually impaired Indian man is riding 4,660 miles across 12 of the country’s states to prepare for his ultimate goal of climbing Mt. Everest.

That’s more like it, too. An Aussie man was sentenced to nine and a half years behind bars for killing a 60-year old woman who was riding her bike in a bike lane, while he was still stoned from a multi-day drug binge. He abandoned his car and passengers after the crash and called an Uber to take him home; he still had ice, amphetamines and cannabis in his system when he was arrested hours later. The judge described his attitude after the crash as “superficial, glib and self-centered.”

 

Competitive Cycling

Cyclocross could become the next new Winter Olympic sport. But you’ll have to wait until 2030 at the earliest.

The careless spectator who got her 15 minutes of fame by causing a massive crash with her cardboard shoutout to her grandparents in the first stage of this year’s Tour de France was lucky to escape with the equivalent of a $1,353 fine.

Twenty-one-year old Australian cyclist Sarah Gigante is angling for a spot in next year’s inaugural Women’s Tour de France.

Fifty-year old, three-time Fleche Wallonne winner Davide Rebellin will enter a remarkable 30th year as a pro cyclist next year.

 

Finally…

People thinks you need a bigass bike seat. If Santa’s not around, maybe a bike-riding Ms. Christmas will do.

And when you care enough to send your worst.

Then again, it beats the hell out of these Share the Road stickers.

https://twitter.com/YPLAC/status/1468944049629503498?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1468944049629503498%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-9-december-2021-288495

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

LA Council votes to close Northvale Gap on Expo Line bike path, and last CicLAvia of 2021 rolls through South LA Sunday

There may be hope for closing the infamous Northvale Gap yet.

The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously to use eminent domain to seize a small portion of the backyards on eight properties lining the E Line train tracks, nee Expo Line, between Motor and Overland Aves.

That will provide the space needed to extend the Expo Line bike path to close the approximately one-mile gap that resulted when Metro gave up on building the pathway through that section, in the face of heavy opposition from homeowners living on Northvale Road.

They had opposed the construction of the Expo Line, apparently believing when they bought their homes that the unused train tracks behind them would stay that way in perpetuity.

And after losing that battle, turned their attention to fighting the bike path, convinced pervy bike riders would peer into their homes, and criminals would make off with their flat screen TVs and silverware balanced on their handlebars.

No, really.

That left bike riders forced to take a circuitous route on the street in front their homes, instead of a direct one behind them. And having to climb a steep hill to ride west, instead of a flat route alongside the train.

The completed pathway is projected open in 2025 — 13 years late, and tens of millions of dollars more than it would have cost to build it along with the train line.

And that’s only if the inevitable lawsuit over eminent domain doesn’t delay the construction even longer.

Our spokesdog wants to know why you haven’t donated to the 7th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive yet. Or to thank you, if you already have.

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Maybe I’m not the only one it snuck up on.

The year’s final CicLAvia will roll this Sunday along Crenshaw and Martin Luther King Jr. Blvds in South LA.

The weather should be beautiful, with the forecast calling for mostly sunny skies with temperatures in the mid 60s.

Metro notes the route will have easy access with several stops along the aforementioned E is for Expo Line.

Unfortunately, I won’t be going, since I’m still suffering from the long-lingering effects of whatever the hell illness knocked me on my ass before Halloween.

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We’ve linked to this one before. But it’s worth revisiting.

https://twitter.com/CoolBikeArt1/status/1465670436184854528

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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 conservative member of the Canadian Parliament was rightfully mocked for accusing a government minister of placing a bicycle on the wall behind him in a zoom call to “make a statement about his environmental cred”.

No bias here, either. Britain’s Express cites comments from dozens of bike haters drivers opposed to narrowing lanes to create or widen bike lanes. But can’t seem to find a single person who thinks it’s a good idea.

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Local

The LA Times podcast revisits the paper’s recent investigative report revealing racial bias in bike traffic stops by sheriff’s deputies, as 70% of riders pulled over by deputies were Latinos, and 85% of bike riders stopped by deputies were searched, usually without probably cause. Unless you think that merely riding a bicycle is evidence of a crime. Which they apparently do.

He gets it. Former Azusa, Ventura and Santa Monica city manager — no, not at the same time — Rick Cole says cities can’t put off road repairs, and can’t build their way out of gridlock.

Metro lists the bicycle classes available this month — four online and one in-person at Leimert Park — as well as a BEST bike ride on the 11th.

 

State

San Diego puts its money where its mouth is — literally — by committing to divest fossil fuel funds from the city’s $2.33 billion investment portfolio, to reduce greenhouse gases and live up to its climate goals.

A San Diego scooter rider suffered a broken nose, fractured shoulder and facial cuts when he was the victim of a hit-and-run driver while riding in a bike lane in the city’s Linda Vista neighborhood.

San Francisco Streetsblog editor Roger Rudick takes a spin around California to observe all the progress — and lack thereof — in creating a more equitable transportation system.

 

National

Men’s Health offers their recommendations on the best bikes to hit the road with, choosing among five separate types, from roadies to cruisers, but apparently never having heard of foldies, commuters or cargo bikes.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A longtime Houston art model was killed in a drunken hit-and-run crash when a speeding driver plowed into the back of his bike; he had credited bicycling with helping him maintain the muscular physique that made him popular with artists.

That’s more like it. A Texas woman will spend the next 15 years behind bars for the drunken hit-and-run death of a prominent local surgeon as he was riding his bicycle.

Life is cheap in Buffalo, New York, where a driver was fined a whopping $200 for hitting and injuring a bike-riding woman while forcing her pickup through a protest last year.

A Maryland study found over 95% of crashes involving bike riders occurred on roads without bicycling infrastructure. Which is what happens when the overwhelming majority of roads don’t have any.

Nice move from ebike maker Rad Power Bikes, which is funding West Virginia’s first bicycle tech lab to teach students ebike mechanics, as well as entrepreneurship and health.

Ride in the footsteps of Daniel Boone with a new bike route tracing his steps through four states, from Atlanta to Cleveland. Coonskin bike helmet optional.

No bias here, either. A local Fox News channel reports on the opposition of North Carolina residents to a lane reduction and bike lanes along a rural highway, while failing to note that the primary reason for removing traffic lanes is to slow speeding drivers and improve safety, not to to force bike lanes on people who don’t want them.

 

International

A new international guidebook attempts to improve safety for riders around the world with proven bike lane design principles.

Momentum lists their picks for the best gifts for urban bike riders. If anyone has me for their Secret Santa, I’ll take the Brompton ebike, thank you.

A London tabloid accuses the police of going soft on scooter riders, after announcing they will no longer seize e-scooters being ridden illegally.

Record-setting Scottish bike rider Josh Quigley says it’s time to finish the around-the-world bike trip that was interrupted when he was run down by a Texas driver; he credits bicycling with saving his life after months of heavy drinking and depression — even though it’s nearly killed him twice.

The death toll is rising on Britain’s rural roads, as the pandemic bike boom led to a nearly 50% increase in countryside bicycling deaths last year, and almost double the total from 2018.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a truck driver walked without a single day behind bars for killing a bike rider during a failed pass. Lenient sentences like that might just be another reason more people on bikes are getting killed.

Police in Kolkata, India are reimposing a ban on bicycles on 71 thoroughfares and bridges, after removing the restrictions during the pandemic. Which, it should be noted, is still going strong.

A pair of Emirati teens are on the verge of completing a four-year challenge to ride their bikes through all seven of the United Arab Emirates.

A Chinese reporter examines the health of the country’s surviving bikeshare providers in the wake of the industry’s collapse four years ago due to flooding the market with cheap bikes and stricter government regulations.

 

Competitive Cycling

French cyclist Anthony Roux has started his own initiative to fight roadside litter, encouraging people to remove trash from both sides of the road, after becoming upset over the piles of trash he sees on his training rides. We can see a lot more garbage along the roads than people who zoom by in cars do. And too often cause more than our share of it.

Rouleur celebrates eight pivotal moments in the career of the legendary Eddy Merckx.

Nineteen of the top American cycling teams have joined forces to create the National Association of Cycling Teams, following the demise of the USA CRITS series; however, the L39ion of Los Angeles cycling team isn’t participating, at least for now. Unless maybe it’s actually 22 teams instead.

 

Finally…

Honestly, who wouldn’t want to ride a bicycle at 186 mph? It’s never too early to get your kid a pseudo-Peloton.

And how to buy a balance bike for your kid. Or you, for that matter.

No judgement.

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It’s penultimate day of the first full week of the 7th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to James L, André V, Paul F, Terese E and Matthew R for their generous donations to keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming to your favorite screen every day.

So don’t wait. Give now via PayPal, or with Zelle to ted @ bikinginla.com.

Any amount, no matter how large or small, is truly and deeply appreciated. And thanks for all the kind words accompanying the donations; that means as much as any amount of cash.

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

 

Another LA councilmember indicted for bribery, Claremont clarifies apparent bike ban, and bike riders get Gavined again

My apologies for the recent unexcused absences. 

You know I’m having a bad night when I post an explanation for why I won’t be posting something that day.

A really bad night is when I don’t manage to post anything at all. 

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The beat goes on at LA City Hall, where yet another councilmember has been indicted for bribery.

Longtime LA-area politician Mark Ridley-Thomas was indicted for allegedly bribing a former dean at USC to admit a family member into a graduate program while he was serving on the LA County Board of Supervisors, before getting elected to the city council after he was termed out by the county.

He is the third current or former councilmember to be indicted for bribery in recent years, although Mitch Englander was convicted of receiving bribes, and Jose Huizar charged with doing the same.

And that doesn’t include CD12 City Councilmember John Lee, who remains on the council, despite reportedly figuring prominently in the bribery charge and conviction of his predecessor.

Maybe that’s our problem.

Maybe we need to take up a collection to bribe a few councilmembers, so bikes can get their attention for a change.

Meanwhile, the New York Times looks at the redistricting controversy that could send recently elected CD4 Councilmember Nithya Raman to represent the San Fernando Valley, where no one voted for her, while disenfranchising  her current district and leaving them without the bike, pedestrian and transit-friendly representative they voted for.

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Claremont has apparently learned the error of their ways, correcting a badly worded draft ordinance that could have been read to ban bicycles on at least one street, in violation of state law.

Credit Erik Griswold with sounding the alarm.

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Evidently, we’ve been Gavined again.

Streetsblog reports Governor Newsom vetoed AB 1147, which would have required better data and analysis regarding greenhouse gas reductions, while calling on Caltrans to develop a pilot program of branded bicycle highways.

He apparently wielded his overactive veto pen out of spite because the bill’s author, Laura Friedman, blocked Newsom’s $7.6 billion transportation bill in a dispute over what segments of high speed rail to fund first.

And no, I don’t know what a “branded” bicycle highway is, either.

On the other hand, Newsom did sign AB 773, which will make it easier to make Slow Streets permanent, as well as partially or completely closing streets for al fresco dining.

He also signed Friedman’s AB 43, which will allow cities to lower speed limits, but not until July 1st, 2024.

And Newsom signed SB 69, which will shut down the state’s “the defunct and bankrupt North Coast Railroad Authority,” and transition it to the Great Redwood Trail Agency, which will be charged establishing a rail trail through the redwoods along California’s North Coast.

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We’ve been following the case of the coal-rolling, 16-year old Texas driver who slammed into six bicyclists on a training ride in Waller County, and trying to read through the lines to figure out why the kid wasn’t charged on the spot.

We don’t have to wonder anymore.

Erik Griswold forwarded a powerful blog post from the Houston lawyer representing the victims from earlier this month, which has somehow gone unreported in the media.

Our 6 clients are suffering from horrible injuries including broken vertebrae, cervical and lumbar spinal injuries, broken collar bones, hands, and wrists- many of which require surgical intervention- as well as multiple traumatic brain injuries, lacerations, soft tissue damage, road rash, and extensive bruising. And those are just the physical injuries.

The driver of the black F-250 that crushed our clients’ bodies and left them and their bikes splashed and scattered across the roadway is a 16 year old Waller, Texas male. Through our own investigation, we’ve learned his name, his address, the names of his parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents, neighbors and family friends. We know the names of the businesses owned and operated by the driver’s family. We know where he was earlier in the day, prior to crashing into our clients while they were more than 70 miles into their USAT tri-club training ride. We know the identity of his passenger (a local 17 year old male from a neighboring town) and a pretty good idea about the role he may have played in causing the crash that sent ALL of our clients to the hospital; 2 by Life Flight, 2 by ambulance, 2 by personal transport…

The driver’s family’s connections in Waller are a legitimate reason for concern, but I know that Charlie and Peter are very well versed in handling the challenges that nepotism can create.

They go on to add this —

The backdrop of the Waller Bike Crash is one riddled with anti-bike bias. Charlie knows all too well as he has recent experiences with judges there, one who actually lamented to him that Waller, TX “doesn’t like [our] kind.” Charlie has formerly represented several cyclists who were targeted and ticketed by Waller police over the last couple of years…This advocacy includes exposing and fighting against those who choose to selectively enforce the law for only a select few.

Our clients are not only hostages to the truck driver’s behavior and their own broken bodies, but also to a criminal process that is supposed to help make them “whole” again in a place that “doesn’t like [their] kind.”

Which reads like a perfect example of saying something without saying it.

Without mentioning the names of the driver’s family members, or their social, financial and/or official positions, the post makes it very clear he’s part of, and protected by, a powerful family in the country.

And that achieving justice in the face of the county’s extreme anti-bike bias will be an uphill climb.

It’s definitely worth a click to read the whole thing.

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Streetsblog reports that Norwalk is beginning work on a bicycle master plan.

Thanks to Joe Linton for the heads-up.

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LADOT offers a quick look at last Sunday’s CicLAvia.

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That feeling when you win the Nobel, but have no use for the prime parking spot that comes with it.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for forwarding the tweets.

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Kermet is one of us, too.

https://twitter.com/HistoryMuppet/status/1447643719512072192

But then, we already knew that.

And yes, that’s something to sing about.

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A UK bike advocacy group celebrates one of the country’s most celebrated bike illustrators.

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

No bias here. A British mayor complains he’s been abused for trying to stop “silly cyclists” from getting killed riding recklessly after dark.

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

A 41-year old man faces charges for running over a 12-year old girl with his bike as she was walking to school in Corona, then stripping naked and making lewd comments; he was arrested as he rode naked past students arriving for school.

Rome, New York police are looking for an ax-wielding, bike-riding robber who made off with a 14-year old boy’s bicycle after threatening to chop his head off.

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Local

LA is taking another step towards creating a continuous bikeway along the LA River, with plans to close a 2.9-mile gap in the San Fernando Valley.

A letter writer takes the LA Times to task for publishing an op-ed from a homeless advocate complaining about a bike rider who loudly objected to two men blocking the LA River bike path to comfort a homeless man, comparing it to a post on Nextdoor. Ouch.

Santa Monica-based Bird announced a new, integrated smart sidewalk protection technology designed to keep users from illegally riding the company’s e-scooters on sidewalks.

While Los Angeles tries to redefine what “Complete Streets” means to include sort-of, semi-complete streets, Culver City is busy building the real thing with a Complete Streets makeover of Washington Boulevard, including dedicated bike and bus lanes connecting downtown to the city’s E Line, nee Expo, station.

LA County Sheriff’s deputies disproportionately stop, search and handcuff Black people in the Antelope Valley, apparently for the crime of walking, biking or driving while Black.

 

State

Streetsblog complains about Gavin Newsom’s “deeply disappointing” vetos of bills to legalize Stop and Yield for bike riders and decriminalize jaywalking, saying the governor relied on flawed data.

A San Mateo letter writer complains about “confiscating” parking spaces from low income, working class neighborhoods, calling it callous and punitive. Evidently, she’s unaware that poor and working class people ride bicycles, too — many as their only form of transportation.

A letter writer from Northern California’s Plumas County makes the case for bike lanes, noting that he’s 60 year old and rides a bike 60 to 70 miles a week to stave off congestive heart failure. But we all know bike lanes only benefit young, healthy adults. Right?

 

National

America Walks will offer a webinar tomorrow on how to take on harmful jaywalking laws. Just a tad too late for those of us in California, though.

Now you, too, can build your own ebike with fat, low profile wheels intended for custom cars.

KC bike and pedestrian advocates called for safety improvements after a man was killed by two separate hit-and-run drivers while leaving Sunday’s Kansas City Chiefs game.

Kindhearted cops in Jasper, Texas raised funds to buy an adaptive bicycle for a 12-year old special needs girl.

Life is cheap in San Antonio, where a 70-year old woman will serve a lousy ten days behind bars and another hundred on house arrest for the drunk driving death of a bike rider.

Evidently, things are no better in Chicago than the Antelope Valley, where bike riders in predominantly Black neighborhoods are eight times more likely to be ticketed than riders in mostly white neighborhoods.

New York Senator Chuck Schumer promises to deliver for the Deliveristas, promising federal infrastructure funds to build rest areas for New York delivery riders, as they band together to protect their own safety.

A paralyzed former Army Ranger living in Virginia has made it his mission to provide adaptive bicycles for paralyzed and disabled children and veterans.

 

International

A British Columbia drunk driver was 2.5 times over the legal alcohol limit when he killed a bike rider, after texting a woman he was arguing with that he was going to get fucked up. And did, apparently.

The theft of high-end bikes continues in London’s Richmond Park, as machete-wielding thieves on motor scooters attacked a man and made off with his nearly $8,000 bike, the fourth such theft this week. Note to self: Don’t ride in Richmond Park.

Evidently, parking in bike lanes isn’t just an American thing, as a London bike rider snapped a photo showing at least seven drivers parked in one.

An English bike rider credits his helmet with saving his life — not from a collision, but when a brick wall collapsed on him as he was riding by. So always wear your helmet 24/7, on or off your bike, just in case.

After British bike riders ridicule a ridiculously short ten-foot bike lane, county officials contend it’s not really a bike lane, but just bike markings and parallel stripes on the pavement. Which is kind of what a bike lane is.

Does anyone really need the new Van Moof ebike that can do 37 mph? That would make it a motorcycle under California law, requiring a helmet, driver’s license and license plate.

A Turkish woman has taught 72 women to ride bikes in just the last five months, in an area where it’s not considered inappropriate for a woman to ride a bike. Which implies that there are places in the country where it is.

 

Competitive Cycling

A 31-year old woman is set to face charges of causing involuntary injuries and endangering others for causing a mass crash on the opening stage of this year’s Tour de France, by holding a handwritten sign reading Allez Opi-Omi — go grandma and grandpa — in front of the peloton.

Four-time Tour de France champ Chris Froome says he still dreams of getting a record-tying fifth win. Someone who shall not be named once won seven Tour de France titles, before unwinning them by doping.

Legendary cyclist Eddy Merckx says Slovenia’s Tadej Pogačar has the potential to do even better than he did. Which is saying something, since Merckx is generally considered the greatest of all time.

American Olympic bronze medalist Emma White announced her retirement at the ripe old age of 24, just days after winning this year’s Sea Otter Classic.

 

Finally…

That feeling when your neighborhood is closed to kids, because cars. Note to paramedics — don’t leave the damn keys in the ambulance.

And, um, well…

https://twitter.com/EntitledCycling/status/1447990411675389954

………

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

California slightly less dangerous for bike riders, Bonin runs for return to city council, and sabotage on a Scottish bike trail

Maybe we’re not quite so bad, after all.

A new report from transportation data analytics firm StreetLight Data creates their own ranking of the safest and dangerous states to ride a bike.

The report uses additional data points to scramble the rankings prepared by The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS).

Top 10 Riskiest States for Bicyclists
  1. Delaware (#2 on FARS* per capita report)
  2. South Carolina (#4 on FARS)
  3. Florida (#1 on FARS)
  4. Louisiana (#3 on FARS)
  5. New Mexico (#5 on FARS)
  6. Oklahoma (#9 on FARS)
  7. Mississippi (Not in the FARS top 10)
  8. West Virginia (Not in the FARS top 10)
  9. Arizona (#7 on FARS)
  10. California (#6 on FARS)
Top 10 Safest States for Bicyclists
  1. Massachusetts (#1 on FARS per capita report)
  2. New York (Not in the FARS top 10)
  3. Illinois (#7 on FARS)
  4. Pennsylvania (#4 on FARS)
  5. Utah (#8 on FARS)
  6. Tennessee (#2 on FARS)
  7. Minnesota (Not in the FARS top 10)
  8. Missouri (#5 on FARS)
  9. Arkansas (#3 on FARS)
  10. Washington (Not in the FARS top 10)

Which means we have just slightly less work to do to make our streets safe and inviting for everyone.

………

Councilmember Mike Bonin is tossing his hat in the ring for a third and final term representing coastal Los Angeles on the council.

One of LA’s most progressive councilmembers, Bonin, who used to bike commute to city hall when he was the top aide to Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, has been one of the leading bike supporters on the council in recent years.

Which isn’t saying much.

But it was Bonin who was behind the simultaneous rollout of three much-needed lane reductions and bike lanes in Playa del Rey in 2017.

And who stood firm in the face of massive motorist opposition until he was undercut by Mayor Eric Garcetti, who disregarded his own Vision Zero program.

Not for the last time, either.

Maybe Bonin can use his last few years on the council to have as big an impact on our streets as his late mentor and predecessor.

………

Formerly staid Santa Barbara has taken a surprising turn towards becoming more bike and pedestrian friendly in recent years.

Here’s your chance to learn how, from some of the people making it happen.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1390111086985158656

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.

This is who we share the parks with. When a Scottish man confronted a retired couple who had just placed a large log on a park bike trail, they confessed they were intentionally trying sabotage it to injure bike riders so they wouldn’t come there anymore.

………

Local

Supporters of Eagle Rock’s Beautiful Boulevard plan are asking you to reach out to Councilmember Kevin de León, and urge him to join County Supervisor Hilda Solis and other local leaders in supporting the plan to re-envision Colorado Blvd when a new Bus Rapid Transit line goes in.

Santa Clarita is challenging residents to go green by bike commuting next week.

 

State

Credit the CHP with calling on drivers to operate their vehicles safely around people on bicycles — and not considering bike helmets the beginning and end of bicycle safety. Although the idea of shared responsibility on the streets doesn’t exactly hold true when comparing a two-ton semi-ballistic weapon with a few hundred pounds of flesh and bone. Or less. 

They get it. The Orange County Transportation Authority calls on everyone to “stay active and get outdoors to safely travel by bicycle” during May’s Bike Everywhere month in the county.

’70s alto sax legend Sonny Simmons was down and out in San Francisco, busking on the streets for spare change, when a local jazz promoter happened by on his bicycle and revived his career with a sold-out gig opening for Branford Marsalis; Simmons died last month, six years after a fall left him partially paralyzed and ended his playing career. If he’d been in a car, he probably never would have heard Simmons, and that career revival might never have come.

 

National

Enough with the light bikes. Pink Bike contemplates what’s the heaviest mountain bike their could build for ten grand.

NACTO follows up on last year’s street design grants to ten cities across the US; Long Beach used theirs to create a parklet program to support restaurants in underserved communities.

Gear Junkie examines whether Apple’s new AirTag is the best anti-bike theft device, allowing you to track your bike down if anyone takes it. On the other hand, AirTag also makes it easier for someone to stalk you.

Speaking of Apple, a new iOS update will allow you to use Siri to report traffic hazards to Apple Maps, where they can be seen by other users. Although it’s questionable what it can do when the hazard is “all these damn cars and the people driving them.”

An Arizona website explains how to tour Zion National Park, Snow Canyon State Park and other hidden Utah gems by bicycle.

A Salt Lake City alternative paper considers the best bike bags for riding around the city.

About damn time. A Colorado man has been arrested for 1st degree murder following the disappearance of wife last year, who set out on a Mother’s Day bike ride and was never seen again; countless searches have failed to discover her body.

A retired ranger says banning bikes from Yellowstone’s south entrance until the park opens to cars is like telling people on bicycles to wait until it’s too dangerous to ride there.

This is how Vision Zero is supposed to work. Hartford, Connecticut is reducing traffic lanes and adding bike lanes and better medians on a street where a bike rider was killed last year.

Connecticut is showing California how it’s done, as a proposal to place speed cams in a limited number of school, hospital and work zones around the state sailed through a second legislative committee with bipartisan support; the bill would also prohibit dooring, among other safety provisions. A similar bill to place speed cams in school zones was gutted by California Senate Transportation Committee Chair Lena Gonzalez of Long Beach.

Buffalo NY is marking Bike Month with a number of pop-up Complete Streets in the city’s Fillmore District. Meanwhile, Los Angeles isn’t.

 

International

London’s Independent considers the best cycling shorts for women.

Yorkshire’s historic Bolton Abbey denies using security guards to turn away people on bicycles, despite bike riders saying that’s exactly what happened over the weekend; the estate claims they were just explaining voluntary pandemic safety measures. Sure, let’s go with that. 

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson went for a bike ride with the mayor of Stourbridge on the eve of the country’s local elections, with both looking surprisingly unsteady on their bikeshare bikes. Especially since London’s bikeshare system was popularly known as Boris Bikes when the experienced bike rider was mayor of the city.

Cycling legend Gino Bartali was honored with a Roman Catholic service on he 21st anniversary of his death; the Italian rider helped save over 800 Jews from the Nazis by smuggling papers in the frame of his bike during WWII.

A Slovenian composites company says they can build a road bike for everyday use that weighs less than nine pounds. Even if cycling’s governing body limits bikes to 15 pounds or more.

Hyderabad, India’s bicycle mayor is leading a group of volunteers fighting the country’s horrific Covid-19 crisis by using their bikes to deliver badly needed medicines to the elderly, as well as searching for oxygen cylinders, hospital beds, ventilators and plasma donors.

 

Competitive Cycling

2019 Tour de France winner Egan Bernal says his performance in the upcoming Giro depends on how his balky back responds.

Amber Neben proves you’re never too old to go for the gold, competing against women half her age for a spot on the U.S. women’s Olympic road team at 46 years old.

The world road cycling championships will be hosted by an African nation for the first time, going to Rwanda in 2025.

 

Finally…

Your next bike might have a steering tube — or a front fork. Nothing like a tall bike to make you stand out in any field.

And now you, too, can compete in Indiana University’s iconic Little 500 bike race, without the inconvenience of attending the university.

Or leaving your home, for that matter.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Hit-and-run driver busted behind bars for killing South LA father, LA considers civilian traffic cops, and Bike the Vote!

They didn’t have to look far to find one hit-and-run driver.

After three full months of searching, investigators identified the driver who killed a 37-year old father as he was riding with his two children in South LA.

Police identified 26-year old Los Angeles resident Moises Iscaya on October 6th as the driver who — allegedly — fled the scene after running down Jorge Guerra on July 8th; Guerra died after spending eight days in a coma.

Fortunately, his two children were uninjured, aside from the trauma of seeing their father killed in front of their eyes.

When LAPD officers searched for Iscaya, however, they found he was already being held by sheriff’s deputies on $2.2 million bail, charged with multiple counts including murder.

Maybe they should just add another murder count while they’re at it.

Unfortunately, felony hit-and-run resulting in death would only add a maximum of four years to whatever he gets if he’s convicted on the other charges.

Something that has to be changed if we ever want to stop the epidemic of hit-and-runs in this state.

………

The Los Angeles City Council will consider using unarmed civilians and speed cams for traffic enforcement and collision investigations this morning.

………

Calbike offers a reminder to Bike the Vote this year.

In every sense.

………

Congratulations to Davis on their award-winning bike safety musical. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

………

New York bike cops continue to use their bicycles as shields and weapons against protesters.

And bust protestors because their bikes fall over.

………

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

Boston suburb rips out a new bike lane after just six days, after vocal residents choose parking spaces over people’s lives.

………

Local

Los Angeles could soon be the home of the nation’s largest ebike factory; privately owed ROKiT MADE plans to open next year to build “best-in-class e-Bike models across all price points in each market segment,” in a plant designed to accommodate up to 2,000 workers.

Santa Monica is planning to add a two-way separated bike lane protected by thin plastic bollards on Ocean Ave, replacing the current painted lane.

 

State

Santa Barbara’s new e-bikeshare system continues the transformation of the city’s main street, as State Street has been reclaimed from cars to provide space for outdoor shopping and dining.

Sad news from Porterville, where a 15-year old boy was killed riding his bike in a crosswalk.

A Fresno man faces charges after he was caught on video threatening a bike rider at knifepoint to steal his backpack.

San Francisco isn’t on track to meet the Vision Zero goal of eliminating traffic deaths in the next four years. But at least they’re trying, unlike a certain megalopolis to the south.

Davis is asking residents to take the Bike League’s Bicycle Friendly Community survey.

The City of Angels is building new bike lanes. No, the other City of Angels.

 

National

Urban planners from across the US consider repurposing traffic lanes for other uses in a post-pandemic world.

A writer for The Verge says driving the massively oversized Cadillac Escalade was one of the most stressful experiences of his life, while Outside says the new electric Hummer is the awesome pickup we’ve all been waiting for. Um, no.

A Colorado mountain biker rides the trail pioneered centuries ago by the Ute tribe.

Texas is launching a Drive Smart, Walk Smart, Bike Smart public safety campaign to combat a jump in bike and pedestrian crashes. Because everyone knows it’s better to air a few ads than do something about dangerous drivers and fix the damn streets.

A Kansas driver had his wrist slap sentence tossed out on appeal, after the court ruled the judge has exceeded her discretion by reducing his ten-year sentence for second-degree murder by over eight years; the court ordered him resentenced for running down a man with his car following a dispute.

A St. Louis nonprofit devoted to refurbishing bikes to donate to kids in need is slowly trying to rebuild after a building collapse destroyed hundreds of stored bicycles; the head of the group didn’t know the building they used for storage had been condemned seven years ago.

Good question. A Vermont paper asks if anyone can do anything about bike theft, while a bicyclist offers a tragic reminder to put your damn phone down while you ride.

Manhattan officials killed a proposal for a cargo bike corral to accommodate the bikes used for Whole Foods deliveries because it would have meant the loss of five lousy parking spaces.

DC’s Metro built bike corrals at three park and ride locations — and somehow spent $20,000 per space doing it.

Residents of a Maryland city are up in arms over groups of ill-mannered kids on bicycles swarming the streets.

Yet another example of keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late, as a South Carolina man was sentenced to 20 years for the hit-and-run death of a bike rider after four previous DUI convictions.

A New Orleans bike group cancels their weekly light-up bike parade after it proves too popular during the pandemic.

 

International

Travel & Leisure lists the world’s top bicycling cities. Needless to say, Los Angeles didn’t make the list; Portland, Seattle and Minneapolis did.

Add these to your mountain bike bucket list. Bicycling recommends a handful of bikepacking singletrack trails across the US and around the world. Read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

They get it. A Bogotá, Colombia website says it’s time to protect vulnerable bike riders, because riding a bicycle shouldn’t be a capital crime.

Mexico’s Merida will build a 45-mile bike lane network circling the Yucatan town.

The bighearted owner of a Toronto bike shop gave a new bike to a frontline hospital worker whose bike was stolen as he worked a 28 hour shift.

Conservative councilors in the London borough of Hackney called for removing Low Traffic Neighborhoods — the country’s Slow Streets equivalent — despite their popularity with the city’s residents.

UK car insurance claims involving bike riders have doubled this year, as more people took to two wheels during the coronavirus lockdown.

Life is cheap in Great Britain, where a careless driver who killed a bike rider got just 30 months behind bars — which included time for also stealing 16 cars worth over $250,000.

Spain plans to reduce the standard speed limit in cities from the equivalent of 31 mph to 18 mph to improve safety for people who aren’t in cars.

Forget helmet laws; an Iranian woman was busted for riding a bicycle without a hijab.

 

Competitive Cycling

English cyclist Dan Martin took the third stage of the Vuelta, while the Giro got a new leader after Thursday’s stage as João Almeida cracked climbing the iconic Stelvio.

Apparently, Colombia cyclist Fernando Gaviria thought Covid-19 was so nice, he caught it twice.

VeloNews examines Anna van der Breggen’s successful strategy to win Sunday’s Tour of Flanders.

Highland could serve as a substitute if the annual Redlands Classic stage race isn’t able to roll next year.

The Cedar City, Utah edition of the Belgian Waffle Ride was the first gravel race to roll as the nation slowly continues a premature wakeup from Covid-19; VeloNews looks at the precautions that were taken to help keep everyone safe.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to ride your bike to commit a burglary, maybe the fireplace isn’t the best place to hide. Your next ride could result in glowing reviews. No, literally.

And someone must think roadkill looks better in stripes.

………

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

LA Times endorses Ryu’s policy ripoffs, a genuine Good Samaritan, and Amazon is or isn’t selling a cheap Peloton knockoff

I’m having major problems with my neuropathy tonight, and really struggling to get today’s post online. 

So let’s go with a little shorter edition today, and save anything we missed for tomorrow. 

The cool thing about neuropathy is you get to enjoy the sensation of demons ripping the flesh from your bones, without the inconvenience of actually dying and eternal damnation and all that. 

………

Somehow, the LA Times endorsed David Ryu for reelection in LA’s 4th Council District, despite noting that many of his recently adopted progressive policies were taken from challenger Nithya Raman.

Ryu’s Road to Damascus conversion from one of the council’s most auto-centric, anti-bike councilmembers to one of most progressive members of the body has come in just the last several months, as he faced a serious challenge from a genuinely progressive, environmental and bike friendly advocate for the homeless.

It’s surprising that the Times fell for what looks to be a self-serving attempt to hold onto his job at all costs.

And it raises a serious question of sexism, when the paper’s editorial board prefers the man who stole his policy positions over the woman they admit actually originated them.

It makes far more sense to follow the endorsements of Calbike, Bike the Vote LA and Streets For All and cast your ballot for Nithya Raman.

I know I will.

………

After a Michigan woman posted on Facebook that her bike was stolen during her ten-hour shift at an Ann Arbor medical center, a total stranger spotted it listed for sale online.

So he set up a meeting with the seller, who wanted $850 for the bike. When the man refused, the seller tried negotiating. But the man again refused, saying he knew the bike was stolen.

The thief finally apologized, but asked for help because he’d fallen on hard times.

So the woman got her bike back.

And the thief got a $100 gift card from the man, along with an offer for a job at one of his auto shops.

If you ever wondered what it means to be a Good Samaritan, that’s pretty much it.

Although it may be awhile before the thief can take advantage of the offer, since they turned him in to the police to answer for his crime.

………

Amazon is now selling their own Peloton knockoff in partnership with fitness startup Echelon for just $499.

Or maybe they’re not.

………

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

Police in Ohio are looking for a man who stole a cash drawer from a local thrift store, before tucking it under his arm and riding off on his bike.

………

Local

Attorneys for Dijon Kizzee say the Compton bike rider was lying on the ground when sheriff’s deputies shot him 15 times.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton says the new Elysian Valley walk/bike bridge is really taking shape.

 

State

A San Diego County Supervisor teams with local advocacy groups to establish a program loaning out ebikes to reduce automobile use, with an option to own them at the end of the two-week program.

 

National

After he calms down, a very forgiving writer for Singletrack refuses to blame the thief that stole his Surly mountain bike, and is just glad it wasn’t one of the bikes belonging to his bike courier neighbors.

After completing a 750-mile ride through the Rockies to talk with average Americans, a reporter for an Idaho public radio station concludes that the US is an unwieldy quilt slowly being torn apart by forces yanking at the threads until they fray.

Bike friendly Portland isn’t so friendly this year, as a rising traffic death toll shows the pandemic isn’t changing driving habits.

A Minnesota city settles an environmental lawsuit by agreeing to mitigate damage from a planned mountain bike trail through through one of the last known habitats of the critically endangered rusty patched bumblebee. Although a better solution would be to build the damn trail somewhere else.

A bike ride will follow the route of the Chicago Race Riot of 1919 to commemorate the victims and raise funds for a community bike shop dedicated to Chicago’s most underserved communities.

 

International

An Indian woman tried biking to work once, and swears she’ll never do it again.

Residents of Mumbai and Kolkata marked Tuesday’s World Car Free Day with a group bike ride.

They get it. The Queensland, Australia DOT shuts down an argument over whether bicyclists should pay registration fees by reminding readers that bicyclists pay for road upkeep through their taxes, just like everyone else.

Yikes. A review of a Sydney, Australia popup bike lane installed during the coronavirus lockdown found several conditions that pose an “intolerable” risk of injury or death.

 

Competitive Cycling

A North Carolina student newspaper says surprise Slovenian Tour de France winner Tadej Pogačar’s victory ranks among the greatest in cycling history. Meanwhile, Road.cc examines the Colnagos he rode to a last-minute victory.

A pair of writers for The Conversation say cycling’s entrenched macho culture means head injuries too often go ignored.

Life is cheap in Lesotho, where the kingdom’s the top cyclist is finally back on his bike, six months after he was seriously injured when an unlicensed taxi driver slammed into a group of four riders near the finish of a race; needless to say, the driver walked with a suspended sentence.

 

Finally…

Maybe using a hammer to retrieve your lost Air Pods from someone else’s wall isn’t the best idea — especially if you’re carrying heroin on your bike. Then again, trying to drive a Jeep on a mountain bike trail isn’t the best idea, either.

And bicyclists find lots of things when they ride.

But a burning car with a body in the trunk usually isn’t one of them.

………

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

A reminder that Covid kills, a conversation with CD4 candidate Nithya Raman, and the war on bikes just keeps going on

One quick note. 

I met with my doctor yesterday, who said he has four patients on ventilators due to Covid-19 right now — including one who’s been on it for five and a half months. 

This is a very serious disease. Yet one that’s easily defeated. 

Just wear a mask every time you leave your home. And yes, that includes when you ride your bike. 

Because you don’t want to catch it. Or be the one who spreads it to someone else. 

And if you don’t believe me, take it from Bill Nye who says wear your mask whenever you’re around other people — like riding your bike on Ventura Blvd. And only take it off when you’re not.

Today’s photo from Pixabay.

………

I had the pleasure of speaking yesterday with Nithya Raman, who is running against incumbent David Ryu to represent CD4 on the LA city council.

I’ll have more about the conversation at a later date as we get a little closer to the November election.

But I can tell you I was very impressed with her, and her commitment to bring a fresh voice to a city leadership that too often seems to be stuck using the same failed approaches as they have for decades past.

And not just on the city’s auto-centric streets.

I was also struck by this comment she made, when we were discussing the progress other cities like London, New York and Paris have made in reimagining the way people get around during the coronavirus pandemic.

“We shouldn’t have to envy other cities.”

No, we shouldn’t.

But we will continue to, as long as LA city leaders continue to do little or nothing to change the current dysfunction on our streets.

And in our government.

………

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

What the hell is wrong with some people? A 15-year old English boy was pushed off his bike by someone in a passing car. Let’s hope they can read the license plate and put that jerk behind bars.

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

A New Jersey man faces charges for opening fire after riding his bike up to a group of people standing outside an apartment building, injuring a four-year old girl.

………

Local

KCET recommends 61 self-guided tours for exploring Los Angeles on your own, including by bike, as well as on foot.

 

State

No surprise here, as wealthy La Jolla comes out against San Diego’s Complete Communities plan, which would increase density to improve quality of life around transit centers.

Good karma all around, as bikemaker Kona Bicycles chose San Jose bike co-op Good Karma Bikes to distribute a dozen new bicycles to the African-American community or others in need, starting with a man suffering from a double pulmonary edema, and a homeless vet who needed a bike to get to chemo treatments after his was stolen.

 

National

He gets it. A HuffPo writer says America’s progressive mayors have missed the chance to remake their cities during the Covid-19 lockdown, noting it will take major transformations to recover from the virus. And specifically calls out Los Angeles for doing virtually nothing.

Warner Brothers co-founders Harry and Abe Warner were two of us, running a bike repair shop before setting out to become early movie moguls.

Worth recommends 19 “must haves” every “intrepid gentleman” needs to keep active during the coronavirus crisis. Which certainly stretches the meaning of “needs” and “must haves” to the breaking point. And what about intrepid women, for that matter?

The New York Times explains the benefits, and problems, of roundabouts; a 2015 British study concluded that traffic lights are safer for people on bicycles.

A bighearted family friend crowdfunded $2,500 to buy a new adaptive bike for a five-year old Denver boy with spinal bifida.

A Chicago group is offering donated bicycles to protesters who had their bikes confiscated by police.

Tragic news from Chicago, where a 56-year old man died weeks after a head-on collision with another bike rider, who passing a slower rider on the city’s Lakefront Trail. Yet another reminder to always ride carefully on bike paths, to protect yourself and others.

Illinois bike riders have teamed with runners to hire an attorney after local authorities sided with NIMBY homeowners to block a pathway connecting two trails, forcing them to cross a dangerous highway instead.

A handwritten sign indicates a Vermont bike path has been closed by the city, which comes as a surprise to the owner of the land.

A Massachusetts man swears he wasn’t texting when he ran down an entire family with his car as they were riding their bikes, killing the father and injuring two others. Which raises the question of why the hell he did it, then, and whether his actions were intentional. Because you have to try pretty damn hard to not see three people on bikes. 

A Pennsylvania letter writer complains that, unlike George Floyd, there was no national news coverage of the murder of five-year old North Carolina bike rider Cannon Hinnant. Which is absolutely true — if you ignore coverage on CNN, Fox News, NBC News, Today, Bicycling, People, Newsweek, USA Today, New York Daily News, and countless other news outlets across the US and overseas. And never mind that Hinnant’s killer wasn’t a cop, which was kinda the point of the whole protest thing. 

Over a hundred people are planning to ride their bikes 250 miles from New York to DC to join the 57th anniversary of the first March on Washington.

DC’s coronavirus-driven bike boom is showing no signs of slowing down.

Raleigh, North Carolina authorities are trying to identify a man who died after apparently being attacked while riding his bike on a local greenway. Yet another reminder to always carry some form of ID that’s not likely to get lost or stolen.

 

International

A British Columbia man turned amateur gumshoe after his $9,000 ebike was stolen, tracking down and assembling a profile of the thief, before police moved in to nab the thief in a sting while he was trying to sell it.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole an autistic Ontario boy’s bike and fishing tackle.

Forty of the best countryside bike trails for your next trip to the UK. Unless you already are in the UK, in which case, carry on.

Seriously? A Welsh county blocked a proposal for a bicycle cafe, because it doesn’t include enough car parking. Which kind of defeats the purpose of a bike cafe.

More proof life is cheap in the UK, as a driver got just 32 months for plowing into a group of bicyclists while high on amphetamines and driving on the wrong side of the road. But at least he lost his license — and his car.

The first recipient of a free bicycle from Philippine TV star Gretchen Ho is a teenager who was using rollerblades to fill in for his sick delivery driver dad; Ho set up the program to provides bikes to help people keep their jobs.

 

Competitive Cycling

An Israeli cyclist will compete in the Tour de France for the first time, as part of Team Israel Start-Up Nation, the first team based and owned in Israel to enter the Tour.

Cyclist wants to know why people seem to have a problem with 22-year old Columbian Tour de France winner Egan Bernal.

Tour de France organizers demonstrate once again just how far they are behind the times, responding to Covid-19 by deciding to cut back on podium girls instead of eliminating the sexist anachronisms all together.

 

Finally…

Probably not the smartest move to steal a mixed martial artist’s bike. Seriously, don’t eat the plants along the bike path.

And why buy a bike computer when you can build your own?

……

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

Ryu motion to make Slow Streets permanent, Legion of LA founder Justin Williams, and popup bike lanes spreading

Once again, LA civic leaders attempt to reinvent the wheel.

That’s because a new city council motion is calling for a study of what it would take to make the city’s Slow Streets program permanent.

Except that study was already conducted ten years ago, when the city studies, and unanimously adopted, an entire network of Slow Streets, then called Bicycle Friendly Streets, as part of the 2010 bike plan.

A plan whose entire existence seems to be forgotten these days.

It’s also worth noting that the Slow Streets motion comes from CD4 councilmember David Ryu, who has suddenly become a champion of safer streets as he faces a major challenge from safe streets champion Nithya Raman for his seat.

Photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels.

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Great story from KCBS2/KCAL9, as they interview South LA’s own Justin Williams, founder of the diversity-based League of Los Angeles cycling team.

This is how they describe the story.

He’s the 2-time defending national champ in a sport you may not be familiar with. From South Central LA, Justin Williams is the best Criterium Cyclist in the country and one of the only African-American riders. Now, he’s using his platform to grow his sport and support the current protests in a push for equality everywhere.

Note: If the video doesn’t show up on your browser, just click the link above.

Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.
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Major cities around the world are taking advantage of the pandemic slowdowns to install popup and permanent bikeways and pedestrian improvements.

Except Los Angeles, of course.

Chicago proves it is possible to move forward with Vision Zero during the pandemic, including new curb-protected bike lanes and other safety improvements to tame dangerous Michigan Avenue and make it safer for cyclists and pedestrians, as well as drivers.

The New York Times takes a deep dive into how cities around the world are trying to prevent gridlock as the pandemic lockdowns end, including reclaiming the streets for people riding bikes and walking.

A pair of neighboring Ontario cities are closing curb lanes on a number of streets to install temporary bike lanes.

The BBC asks if Britain’s popup bike lanes will be enough to keep people riding

Munich, Germany is getting popup bike lanes at least through October, assuming Covid-19 is under control by then. Which seems highly unlikely.

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Around one hundred people rolled and rode for Black Lives Matter and Breonna Taylor; over twice that many took part in a Pedal for Justice ride the next day.

A couple hundred Cleveland women came out to ride against injustice and support Black Lives Matter.

Hundreds of Boston bike riders turned out for a Ride for Black Lives on Saturday.

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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was one of us.

Then again, so was Gandhi.

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

A 13-year old British teen was pulled off his bike and tackled by police in a case of mistaken identity — while he was taking part in a charity ride with his father.

A road raging British driver has been arrested after getting out of his car to confront, and kick, a small group of bike riders.

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

Pasadena police busted a bike-riding armed robber after recognizing the description given by the victim as a local transient; officers recovered some of the money, as well as the bike he was riding. Which is cop talk for saying that was probably stolen, too.

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Local

The new North Atwater bike and pedestrian bridge doesn’t appear to be working out so well for equestrians, who have their own separated lane across the bridge.

BikinginLA sponsor Cohen Law Partners looks at what Los Angeles can learn from bike-friendly cities that are doing safety right. Hint: Just about everything.

 

State

An Anaheim man describes losing 300 pound in a single year after maxing out the scale at 599 plus, in part by switching to riding a mountain bike after Covid-19 shut the gym down.

All summer events have been cancelled in Aliso Viejo, including next weekend’s planned fireworks and bike ride.

Riverside has cancelled their fourth of July fireworks due to the coronavirus and replaced it with food and backpack drives, as well as a community bike ride, which hopefully won’t spread it, either.

Fresno police are looking for the heartless coward who ran down a bike rider on June 20th, and left the victim dying in the street.

The CHP has busted a hit-and-run driver who seriously injured two bike riders in Sacramento’s Natomas neighborhood in April.

A Lodi bike rider was critically injured in a collision with an apparent driverless car, since the local TV station didn’t bother to mention whether it had one.

 

National

Business Insider examines the rise and fall of the Jump bike, and how Uber drove what was supposed to be the future of the company into the ground in just two short years.

A writer for Vogue concludes there’s no such thing as a cool, chic or fashionable bike helmet, but some look better than others.

NPR offers a guide to exercising in a mask when you run or bike outdoors.

Flux says an ebike is a must-have for your next trip.

An Omaha, Nebraska newspaper recommends bicycle camping for a Covid-friendly excursion.

Kindhearted Texas cops got a local mission to donate a new bicycle to a 61-year old man after someone stole the bike he used to get to work at Walmart; they tried to buy one for him, but there weren’t any bikes available due to the bike boom.

The bighearted owner of a Flint, Michigan diner gave away 1,400 bicycles to local kids this year, for a total of around 6,000 bikes in the last eight years; unfortunately, this is the last year of the program.

A Harvard ornithology professor is riding his bike across the US in support of Black birders and Black Lives Matter. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the tip.

New York Streetsblog says restaurants are stealing bike lanes to expand their outdoor seating. Expanded seating is a great idea, but they should be required to install temporary protected bike lanes to go around it.

A New York father is looking forward to getting back on his bike, two years after a misdiagnosed heart condition interrupted his life.

Quartz asks if Covid-19 will finally turn New York from a city of straphangers to a city of bike riders.

Jalopnik says the NYPD is so bad at traffic enforcement, people want them out of the job. It’s not just New York; the same demands have been made in Los Angeles, too.

Chattanooga TN mountain bikemaker Ocoee is getting a name change to avoid any unintended confusion with a 1920 racial massacre by a white mob in Ocoee, Florida, which resulted in the deaths of over 30 Black residents; the company was actually named after the mountain biking trails around Tennessee’s Ocoee River.

Baltimore is telling everyone to Look Alive to improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians in a new public service campaign.

A Virginia paper spells out the advantages of ebike compared to cars, as well as standard bicycles.

A Miami cop killed one bike rider and injured another in an on-duty collision.

 

International

Bike Radar explains how to turn your bike into an ebike.

A report from Reuters says car crashes are deadlier in the US and the UK, as drivers can’t manage to keep their damn feet off the gas during the coronavirus lockdowns.

Police in Calgary, Alberta are teaming with Bike Index to help return more stolen bikes to their owners. Until Los Angeles shows a similar level of enlightenment, you can register your bike for free right here.

Newly released sales figures show the UK’s bike boom resulted in explosive growth, with April bike sales doubling over the year before; however, formerly booming ebike sales are down.

An Irish columnist says the bike boom has been one of the unforeseen consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic, but questions how safe bicycling will be as regulations ease and traffic increases.

More on the five-year old English boy planning to ride 100 miles in five days to raise funds for a charity that “helps sick, disabled or disadvantaged children experience a magical day out.”

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo won reelection, establishing clear support for her plans to revamp the city’s streets to boost bicycling and walking. Meanwhile, she’s speeding up work on a green makeover of the city’s car-clogged inner beltway.

No surprise here, as Belgium’s King Philippe is one of us, along with his entire family.

Car clogged Mumbai is getting 24 bicycle councilors, one for each of the city’s 24 districts, with a goal of making the city the bicycling capital of the world by 2030.

An inexperienced Melbourne bike rider just barely lost a crosstown commuting challenge through the city.

 

Competitive Cycling

Admitted doper Nicki Sorensen says he’s embarrassed by what he did as a pro cyclist, but insists he belongs as a team sports director so he can tell younger riders what not to do.

A writer for The Guardian pens a love letter to the Tour de France, saying the race will be missed this summer. The rescheduled race is set to begin in late August, but don’t hold your breath.

Cycling Weekly looks back 65 years to Great Britain’s first all-British Tour de France team.

As cycling prepares to return, we’re reminded that it’s impossible to ride in a peloton without riding in other riders’ snot. Which is pretty much the best reason to avoid group rides right now.

 

Finally…

Presenting the clopless bike pedal. Don’t crash into women carrying water on their heads, or the could ban bikes for everyone.

And it may be easier to remove free parking from Monopoly than on city streets.

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

Metro bus layover blocks San Fernando Valley bike lane, three easy steps to safer streets, and biking through the pandemic

What good is a bike lane when it doubles as a layover space for Metro buses?

That’s the question Steven Hallett asked in an email to CD12 Councilmember John Lee.

With more and more bicycles on the road, clear, safe, unobstructed bicycle lanes are vital. While there are several I would like to point out, I will address only one at this time. Just east of Porter Ranch Dr on Rinaldi St in Porter Ranch There is a bus layover zone that blocks the bike lane. It is just around a curve and is blocked by bushes, so when I am on my on a bike, I cannot see it until I get very close forcing me to either use the traffic lane or stop and wait for the traffic lane to clear. To be clear, I am not talking about a bus stop (pick-up / drop off), but a layover where one, two, and sometimes three buses are parked for an extended periods of time waiting for their run to start. On top of that, the bike lane where the buses park is very damaged —sunken and very cracked (bus stops usually have a concrete pad, this lay over zone does not!). I have been on the MTA web site to try and find out what “Rule 2.15” is that allows (illegally!) buses to park in the bike lane with no success. I certainly couldn’t park my truck there just because I wanted to! I have also emailed various departments at the MTA with no response what-so-ever, not even a polite response. I am including pictures showing the blocked bike lane, the No Parking Anytime (NO PARKING ANYTIME) sign, and the MTA sign with the reference to ‘Rule 2.15.  It is your responsibility to make our community safe!

We’ll see if he gets a response from Lee, who isn’t exactly known for his concern for anyone who doesn’t get around by car.

Especially since he hasn’t gotten anywhere with Metro.

Never mind that Lee’s got his hands full after being deeply implicated in the bribery scandal that took down his predecessor, Mitch Englander.

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Robert Leone forwards a trio of reasonable and easy steps from the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition on how to make streets safer for people on bikes and on foot.

Too bad LA’s city leaders aren’t on their mailing list.

Publicize a reduced speed advisory to 15 mph for residential streets to keep everyone walking and biking safe. More people are walking and biking in their neighborhoods to get exercise and travel to essential services nearby. With less car traffic, people are speeding down roads, endangering those walking and biking. A reduced speed advisory publicized by the city and local police would help raise awareness and lead to fewer crashes and injuries among people and less burden on the healthcare system.

  • An additional step would be to adjust signal timing to slow vehicle speeds and ensure safety

More space for the increased number of people walking and biking. Our biking and walking networks are insufficient to meet the needs of people getting exercise outdoors and traveling while maintaining six feet of social distance. We recommend identifying streets where bikeways and sidewalks could be expanded, creating quick build or pilot bikeways and sidewalks on streets that have excess vehicle lanes. SVBC is ready to help identify streets and rally volunteers to install signs and barricades to make it work. (Oakland announced April 10 that they would be closing 74 miles/10% of streets to carssee plan).

Switch the pedestrian phase of traffic signals to be automatic and ensurethat bicycles are captured at traffic signals. Adjusting pedestrian signals so pushing a button is no longer needed to cross the street limits the amount of surfaces a person must touch, helping curb the spread of COVID-19. This is simpler for some cities than others depending on how their traffic signal system operates (either a central operating space or having to go out to individual signals). Thank you to San José and Redwood City for already doing this!

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Calbike offers resources to help get you through the coronavirus crisis, including FAQs on riding through the pandemic, tips for new or returning bike riders, and Bike Match programs throughout the state.

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

Angry English villagers stop just short of getting out the pitchforks and torches, ripping the sheets off someone’s bed to demand that bicyclists stop “panting” in their village and just stay away. They’re assuming that it’s the people on bikes who may be infected with the virus, when it’s just as likely the people on two wheels risk of catching it from the villagers. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

A proposal to allow New Zealand bike riders to use the sidewalk at speeds less than 10 mph is somehow deemed an attack on pedestrians.

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Local

Great move from South LA’s East Side Riders Bike Club, who gave back to the local community by serving hundreds of free pancake breakfasts in Watts this week.

Isla Fisher is one of us, taking a bike ride through her Los Angeles neighborhood wearing a helmet and mask.

Chris Pine is one of us, too, as he took a bike ride through the streets of LA with English actress Annabelle Wallis.

 

State

A pair of pro cyclists have set up a unique contact-free food drive in Encinitas to benefit Feeding San Diego.

Bicyclists in San Diego’s North County are struggling to balance the right to ride while respecting state and local health restrictions.

 

National

City Lab suggests cities should stop charging fees to e-scooter companies and start subsidizing them to ensure their survival after the coronavirus crisis.

Apple introduces a handlebar mount for your iPhone.

Bike Santa Fe’s Brian Kreimendahl forwards news about the arrest of a killer hit-and-run driver, who says she thought she’d just hit a traffic cone instead of the bike rider she left dying on the side of the road. And swears she only had one drink that night. Sure. Let’s got with that.

A Colorado bike rider says stop bending the rules to ride in groups or drive to distant trailheads, and maybe do your riding inside, like she is.

A Massachusetts driver faces multiple charges including vehicular homicide for running down an entire bike-riding family while texting last month, killing the father and critically injuring the mother and adult son.

A Brooklyn urban planner says don’t overthink it because closing streets to allow exercising while social distancing is easy.

Sad news from New York, where Covid-19 has taken the life of a 55-year old man known as the best bike mechanic in Queens, just one of the 13,000 New Yorkers killed by the virus to date.

Like here in Los Angeles, New York drivers are putting the pedal to the metal on the city’s newly empty streets, with speeding tickets up 100%.

 

International

Road.cc says you can actually get a decent road bike for less that the equivalent of $375.

Cycling Tips uses Strava data to rank the 20 fastest road bikes.

Evidently, you can’t drive away from justice. After a Toronto woman repeatedly flipped off a person for filming her blocking a bike lane, she drove off before police could give her a ticket. But it will be coming in the mail, anyway.

The CBC considers just how safe it is to run or ride a bike these days.

Once again, a bike rider is a hero, as a former English Marine leaped off his bike and into action to save the life of a van driver who went off the road after losing consciousness.

Bicycling talks with the British women who beat the Covid-19 pandemic by days to set an around the world tandem record.

A writer for Bike Radar says his new Surly fixie is keeping him sane during the UK’s coronavirus lockdown. Something most people who ride bikes can probably relate to.

An Edinburgh bike shop is donating free bikes, helmets, locks and lights to key workers for six months during the coronavirus pandemic, while a new map shows locations with similar programs throughout the UK.

Inspecting bikes in 1960s Britain.

Ebike prices continue to drop, with Dutch brand Van Moof introducing their latest model for under $2,000 — roughly half the price of its current bike.

Dutch pro cyclist Dylan Groenewegen is using his time under the lockdown to deliver groceries to homebound people in Netherlands by bike while wearing his full team kit. Thanks to Stormin’ Norman for the link.

German bike shops are scheduled to rise from their enforced coronavirus slumber next week.

An Indian man is riding his bike throughout the city of Hyderabad to call attention to the need for masks and social distancing.

Palestinian women are using bicycles to bring crafts, toys and books to children shut inside by the Covid-19 lockdown.

Nice guy. The head of an Aussie civil rights organization says being told to only walk counterclockwise around a lake for social distancing is an attack on freedom. And he’s just sorry the bike rider who killed his dog in a crash didn’t die, too.

 

Competitive Cycling

A public health expert says allowing the rescheduled Tour de France to go off as planned this July is a recipe for disaster, especially if fans are allowed to attend the race.

 

Finally…

Nothing like slipping out for a casual bike ride, and ending up with a fashion review. When you’re trying to escape from the cops on you bike, watch out for the old sign post through the spokes trick.

And call it an inflatable pool noodle to make drivers maintain a little social distancing.

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

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