Tag Archive for Los Angeles River bike path

Car chases end on LA-area bike paths, couple kidnaps and tortures prospective bike buyer, and weigh in on Glendora Ave

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

The assorted health issues stemming from my diabetes, and the many and varied meds to treat them, conspired to knock me on my ass all Tuesday night and most of the following day.

One more reminder that diabetes sucks.

Virtually all my health problems are the result of doctors who insisted I’d never get diabetes, despite a family history on both sides, allowing it to go undetected for as much as 20 years. 

So if you’re at risk, get checked. And don’t believe anyone who insists your bicycling, lean build and/or healthy diet means you won’t get it. 

Then do whatever you have to do to avoid it.

Because trust me, you don’t want this shit.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.

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Los Angeles TV viewers watched live Tuesday evening as a car theft suspect led police on a high speed chase before briefly driving on the Westside’s Ballona Creek bike path.

He then abandoned the allegedly stolen van to run across the 90 Freeway during rush hour traffic, and apparently made a failed attempt to buy, beg or steal a man’s bicycle back on the path.

All in vain, as it turned out, as the bike rider refused, and police tackled the man in a grassy field shortly later.

It appeared to be a common theme for the day.

Two other suspects appeared to escape capture earlier Tuesday after an extended high speed chase that ended in Long Beach.

They, too, abandoned the car — apparently their own, this time — and beat an escape by walking along the LA River bike path.

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Buyer beware, indeed.

A New Mexico couple faces a raft of charges after allegedly kidnapping a man who came to their house to buy a bicycle.

They reportedly were looking for someone they said owed them money. But they’re likely to get long prison terms, instead.

And yes, this is why you should always meet prospective bike buyers or sellers in a public place.

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Here’s your chance to weigh in on a safer Glendora Ave.

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Learn how to fight for, and implement, effective Vision Zero programs.

Hint: Find politicians with more commitment and courage than LA’s weak kneed mayor and city council.

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Ever get the feeling they’re just trying to thin the herd?

https://twitter.com/just_barely/status/1361626101559271424?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1361626101559271424%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-17-february-2021-280977

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Here’s today’s mountain biking break, courtesy of the “insanely long” trails of Idaho’s Silver Mountain bike park.

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

An Aussie bike rider voiced his obvious displeasure after a driver passed far too close and too fast.

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Local

It’s getting closer. The new Taylor Yard bike and pedestrian bridge connecting Elysian Valley and Cypress Park is about three-quarters done. Let’s just hope it’s worth the $18 million price tag, which is more than two to three times the original estimate.

KCET highlights 12 bikeable spots to explore in WeHo’s Rainbow District, aka Boystown, viewable along the bike lane on Santa Monica Blvd. Some I didn’t even know about, like the Door’s offices and rehearsal space, where Jim Morrison laid tracks for L.A. Woman.

Sofi Tucker is one, uh, two of us, as the EDM DJ duo partnered with Venice Beach’s Solé Bicycles for a limited-edition white and purple single-speed bike called The Purple Cheetah, in honor of its paint job and cheetah-print seat.

 

State

Congrats to carfree bike rider Jacob Madel on his appointment as the new advocacy manager for the San Diego Bike Coalition.

A coalition of San Diego advocacy groups reaffirms its support for protected bike lanes on 30th Street through the North Park neighborhood.

San Diego letter writers debate the virtues of protected bike lanes, with frequent BikinginLA contributor Phillip Young taking the contrary view.

Completing our San Diego foursome, 51-year old Leovardo Salceda may finally face very belated justice, 32 years after he allegedly fatally shot bike rider Oliver Harrison with a stray bullet.

Maybe San Francisco construction crews are starting to get it, apparently thinking more about bike riders and other vulnerable road users when setting up their work zones.

Sad news from Riverbank, where a teenaged boy was killed in a collision while riding his bike at 2:30 am.

 

National

Bicycling says Vanmoof’s team of bike hunters could make stolen bicycles a thing of the past. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if Bicycling’s site blocks you.

Esquire rates the seven best bikes to choose from if you want to ride in style this year, ranging in price from around $300 to $1,200.

A Seattle nonprofit uses bakfiets cargo bikes to deliver food and supplies for food banks; 450 volunteers have transported over 88 tons of food since the pandemic started last spring.

The Killers’ Brandon Flowers is one of us, as the lead singer of the Las Vegas-based band will have shoulder surgery for a mountain biking injury.

Nevada’s Clark County, home to Las Vegas, belatedly gives bike riders the right to take the lane.

They get it. The latest draft of Missoula, Montana’s long-range transportation plan is heavy on bike lanes, greenways, shared-use paths and Complete Streets, while dropping a proposed freeway interchange. Now if Los Angeles could just somehow make that leap.

Meet a Missouri man who’s lived carfree for the last 14 years, riding his bike more than an hour to work every day, regardless of the weather.

An Ohio bike shop got a stolen BMX bike back when the owner’s mother called the mother of one of the suspected thieves, asking for her son do the right thing. Which in this case, meant buying it back from the person he sold it to before he could return it.

You can now rent an ebike in New York for $99 a month.

The American spy who killed a 19-year old British man when she slammed into his motorcycle, then fled the scene — and the country, claiming diplomatic immunity — offered to go into mediation when a Virginia court refused to dismiss the civil suit against her. Sadly, the Trump administration refused to send her back to the UK to face charges, and Biden appears to be following suit.

The Virginia Senate approved measures requiring drivers to change lanes to pass bike riders when they can’t give a three-foot passing distance and allow bicyclists to ride two abreast, but punted on adopting the Idaho Stop Law.

 

International

Your next bike helmet could come with built-in lights, complete with your choice of light(er) weight and air vents, or self-charging solar panels.

Banksy’s recent English bike mural is literally off the wall, after it was sold, bricks and all, to an art gallery for an undisclosed six-figure price, despite claims that it really belonged to the people of Nottingham, rather than the building owner who sold it.

A British man will have to find a new home for the hundreds of broken bikes he fixes to give away on Facebook or raffle to raise funds for nonprofits, after his homeowner’s group gave them the boot from his own driveway.

An Irish researcher says a helmet and hi-viz are less effective than segregated infrastructure to improve bicycle safety.

Cyclist touts Les Trois Cols as possibly the greatest bicycling loop in the French Alps, traversing three mountain passes while offering challenging climbs and spectacular views.

F1 driver Fernando Alonso is back in the saddle training for the upcoming motorsports season in Switzerland, just days after surgery to repair his jaw and teeth damaged in a bicycling collision.

An Indian paper asks if the pandemic-induced bike boom is safe and there to stay.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. A New Zealand man who killed a bike rider is asking to get his driver’s license back, less than a year after the distracted driving crash; the judge disqualified himself because he has feared for his own safety while biking on the same road.

The Australian edition of Gizmodo examines how the bicycle changed the world for women.

 

Competitive Cycling

About damn time. Thirty-three year old former bike messenger Ayesha McGowan has joined Liv Racing, achieving her high-profile goal of becoming the first Black American woman to compete on the World Tour, just six years after first taking up the sport. Once again, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

The US men’s road cycling team for this year’s Tokyo Olympics could fit in a bobsled. No, a two man bobsled.

 

Finally…

VeloNews meets Vogue. When you’re riding a bike, with an outstanding warrant for car theft hanging over your head, just put a damn light on it, already.

And this pretty much sums it all up.

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

Dangerous hazard on LA River path, harrowing account of Portland rampage, and Santa Monica Mtns gravel guide

Robert Karwasky forwards a photo of a dangerous situation on the LA River bike path, just north of the Colorado Street overpass, as a collapsing fence post juts out over the pathway.

Here’s how he describes the problem —

It poses a risk for very serious injury and when traveling south on the path at dusk or night, in blends in with the tunnel and is very difficult to see.

The problem comes in figuring out just who’s responsible for fixing it.

It could be the City of Los Angeles, or maybe Glendale; it could be LA County or Caltrans. Or whoever the property owner is whose fence is collapsing.

If anyone knows, let me know so we can get this fixed before someone gets hurt.

Or if you know someone who already got hurt there, I know some damn good lawyers over there on the right.

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A Portland delivery rider offers a firsthand account of the harrowing vehicular rampage that left an elderly woman dead and injured another ten people, mostly on foot or riding bikes.

Sixty-four-year old Paul Rivas pled not guilty to 14 felony counts in the 15-block rampage, while offering an ever-shifting array of motivations.

Needless to say, police suspect some form of intoxication or illness, physical or otherwise.

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Gravel Bike California is back with the ultimate Santa Monica Mountains gravel guide.

Who knew I was a trend setter back in the day, when I rode gravel farm roads through eastern Colorado on my inappropriately skinny-tired bike.

Thanks to Zachary Rynew for the heads-up.

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Caltrans wants to know what intersections need help.

And while “every intersection” is indeed the correct answer, it’s probably not the one they’re looking for.

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Spend 14 minutes bikepacking in the Sierras through Kings Canyon and Sequoia national parks (scroll down), and exploring the devastation after a wildfire.

Or you could spend less than half that time with Danny MacAskill’s latest insane bike video.

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

A car passenger in Yorkshire, England pushed a 70-year old man off his bicycle. Then added insult to injury — literally — by getting out and stealing the man’s bike as he lay incapacitated on the street.

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Local

The LA Times says yes, you can do bike — and hiking — tours on the cheap.

 

State

A San Clemente writer and longtime ebike rider gets a positive response to a column promoting ebikes, but reminds riders to stop for stop signs and red lights. Even if teen girls laugh at you.

An op-ed from a former San Diego bike commuter says bicycling rates are remaining flat, despite the city’s investment in a quality bike network. And offers suggestions on how to change that, including a call to subsidize ebikes for commuters.

Who knew? Former Vice President Spiro Agnew was one of us, taking to his bike to ride through the Coachella Valley after resigning in disgrace in 1973.

 

National

Bike Portland clarifies that AAA’s shift away from calling crashes accidents that we mentioned yesterday was actually from a large group of member organizations, rather than the national AAA itself.

Now that’s more like it. An Iowa man got a well-deserved eleven years behind bars for killing a man riding a bicycle, while driving drunk and texting.

The Chicago Tribune offers advice on how to bike in the snow. A skill you’re not likely to need here in Southern California; how to ride with pontoons may be more appropriate today.

The mother of a New York State teenager is suing the owner of the car that killed her daughter, alleging he loaned it to the drunk driver who swerved into a bike lane and struck the girl as she rode her bicycle; the driver was sentenced to a well-deserved five to fifteen years behind bars.

In a huge victory for Brooklyn bike riders, the city’s eponymous bridge will finally get curb protected bike lanes on both sides of the iconic span; the somewhat less famous Queensboro Bridge will get a pair, as well.

In addition to the new bridge bike lanes, New York Mayor de Blasio pledged to build new bicycle boulevards in each of the city’s seven boroughs, calling them the key to an equitable Covid recovery. That deafening silence you hear is LA Mayor Garcetti in response.

Call it an inside job. A pair of New York bike thieves enter an apartment building with bolt cutters, and take the elevator up to steal an ebike used by food delivery rider that was locked in the hallway. Which suggests they somehow knew exactly where to find it.

A member of Gotham’s Major Taylor Iron Riders bike club celebrates the namesake that inspired similar clubs across the US.

A Florida advocacy group is highlighting 21 bike-riding women for their commitment and dedication to bicycling to serve as role models for women interested in riding.

 

International

No surprise here, as a British bike advocacy group says removing bike lanes hits young riders the hardest. Sometimes literally.

An Indian man proves you don’t have to be able to see to compete in an ultra climbing bike race.

A Singapore bikeshare rider learns the hard way that it’s probably not the best idea to bribe an enforcement officer so he won’t seize your illegally parked bike. Or maybe just offer more next time.

 

Competitive Cycling

The French bicycling calendar kicks off this weekend with the Grand Prix Cycliste la Marseillaise. And no, you probably can’t see it here.

Peloton remembers the late, great Raymond Poulidor, who made the Tour de France podium eight times in 14 appearances in the ’60s and ’70s.

 

Finally…

You know you’ve finally made the big time when there’s a sand truck named after you. Youth must be served, as a toddler kicks ass on a pump track with a pacifier in his mouth.

And this driver should be charged with bicycle cruelty.

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Apropos of nothing, here’s a little corgi action from my personal Twitter account to get you through the weekend, until we meet again.

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

Morning Links: Bike rider murdered on LA River path, Westwood NIMBYs rise again, and LA makes bad list of best bike cities

I’m not usually one to leave a job half done. 

But evidently, I’m okay with knocking off when it’s just two-thirds finished.

Especially when I don’t have any choice. 

I’ve been struggling with low blood sugar most of the night, ranging from dangerously low to just extremely nauseatingly low. 

Despite which, I’ve somehow managed to get this far with today’s post. But I can’t make it any further. 

At least not tonight. 

But don’t fret.

I promise to catch up on the rest tomorrow, when I’ll (hopefully) be feeling better.

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Evidently, nowhere is safe for LA County bike riders.

The LA Times reports that a man was found shot to death next to his bicycle on the LA River bike path just before 11 pm Sunday night.

The vicim was discovered suffering from a single gunshot wound to the upper body on the pathway near Clara Street and River Road in Cudahy.

There are no known suspects.

Anyone with information is urged to call the LA County Sheriff’s Department at 323/890-5500.

Thanks to Eban Lehrer for the heads-up.

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The decidedly bike-unfriendly Westwood Neighborhood Council is raising its ugly NIMBY head once again.

The group, which is dominated by wealthy homeowners in the area, is calling for a motion to block proposed bike lanes on Westwood Blvd from just below Wilshire Blvd to the UCLA campus.

Even though the North Westwood Neighborhood Council, where the lanes would actually be located, overwhelmingly favors them.

And even though they could help revitalize the rapidly dying Westwood Village, while improving safety for UCLA students, staff and employees, along with what few shoppers, diners and movie goers remain.

New LA advocacy group Streets For All is calling for everyone to contact area Councilmember Paul Koretz. Though it’s questionable what good that will do, since Koretz is the one who singlehandedly blocked bike lanes along the lower portion of the street below Santa Monica Blvd at the behest of a handful of homeowners.

More effective could be their final suggestion.

3 – Show up at Westwood Neighborhood Council’s meeting – and encourage any friends that live in Westwood to join you. We will be passing out signs to hold up. Give public comment supporting Metro’s bike lanes on Westwood Bl. and opposing their interference in part of Westwood that isn’t even in their neighborhood council district.

When: Wednesday, December 11, 2019. 7pm.

Where: Belmont Village Senior Living, 10475 Wilshire Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90024

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I don’t want to frighten you.

But before you read this next item, you need to sit down.

Now set down your coffee, tea or whatever you’re drinking. You don’t want you to ruin your laptop, phone or any other device with an unplanned spit take.

Because what I’m about to say may come as a shock. Or maybe a laugh.

Or in my case, a damn good guffaw.

Because Los Angeles finally made a list of the most bike-friendly cities.

No, in the world.

Seriously.

Even though we can’t even make a list of the most bike-friendly cities in California. Or barely in LA County, for that matter.

Let alone with criteria like this.

For this edition of the ranking, we have evaluated and ranked over 60 cities from around the world using 7 factors including biking infrastructure, bike safety, roadside rentals, bike-share index, friendliness (designated bike lanes), road connectivity, and bicycle culture (the shops, routes, and attributes that make each city a great place to ride). These are the best cycling cities in the world. Did your city make the list?

Clearly, they didn’t deduct for LA’s angry, aggressive and distracted drivers. Or elected leaders who seem to like the way Vision Zero looks on LADOT’s website, as long as they don’t actually have to do anything.

Never mind the steadily rising toll of fallen bicyclists that disprove the city’s meager efforts to date.

But not only did LA make the list, we apparently made it twice.

Magazine placed Oslo in sixth on the list ahead of Bremen, and Antwerp. San Francisco and Helsinki round out the list at nine and ten, respectively. Los Angeles, Los Angeles, Portland, Boulder, and Seattle came out as the top five most bike-friendly cities in the United States.

CEO Magazine, which created this list, may or may not be legit.

But LA’s inclusion on it is total bull.

The Onion, on the other hand, get it right with a story saying Los Angeles is now adding lanes for bike riders to recover from getting hit by drivers.

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Yesterday we posted video of a road raging Texas truck driver blocking both lanes of a narrow highway to tell off a group of bicyclists, which made it look like the riders may have been taking up both sides of the road.

Today we get additional video from another angle, making it clear they weren’t. And that she was going way too fast.

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This is who we share the roads with.

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‘Tis the Season.

Four hundred Coachella Valley 4th graders got new bikes and helmets courtesy of Variety of the Desert.

Around a hundred volunteers pitched in to build 123 bikes for a Pennsylvania nonprofit, marking more than one thousand bikes the group has given away since 2008.

Even Fox News is getting in on the bike building act.

Meanwhile, Bike Radar has eco-friendly gift ideas for the bike rider in your life. Or maybe something for the bike-riding lesbian on your list.

And the New York Post has advice on gifts to avoid so you don’t end up like the Peloton husband.

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

A bike-riding Grinch made off with a San Jose family’s Christmas decorations.

An Illinois man was busted for pedaling his bike up behind a woman to steal her purse in a Walmart parking lot. Even if the headline suggests he was trying to sell his bike, instead.

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It looked for awhile like Monday would be the first day with no donations to the 5th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

But appearances can be deceiving. 

So let me offer a heartfelt thank you to William S for coming through at the last minute with his generous donation help keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day!

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Local

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton offers photos from Sunday’s West Valley CicLAvia, while CiclaValley offers a video recap. And no, my fumble fingers never gotten used to typing CicLAvia and CiclaValley in the same sentence, and probably never will.

Yet another reminder that Los Angeles will close Hollywood Blvd at the drop of a hat for a movie premier. But somehow can’t create a pedestrian plaza to improve business and save human lives.

 

State

California planners are already telling LOS to get lost.

San Diego’s popular Rose Canyon bike path will be closed this week to pave the final segment.

San Francisco will close a section of Octavia Street in the Hayes Valley neighborhood to cars, and fling it open for people on bicycles. Permanently. Maybe Los Angeles can take the hint.

 

National

Bicycling lists the ten most popular Strava segments from across the US, with a heavy emphasis on the West Coast.

The magazine also looks at Utah’s shrinking Bears Ears National Monument, warning that oil wells could soon replace a bikepacking paradise.

A coalition of conservation groups have filed suit against new federal rules opening National Park trails to ebikes if other bikes are allowed. Evidently, the wilderness is only for the fit and able bodied, as far as they’re concerned.

Trek recalled their 2017-19 Super Commuter+ 8S ebikes because, as the Miami Herald points out, nobody expects the wheels to come of a $5,200 bike. Actually, no one expects the wheels to come off any bike, regardless of price.

A Colorado bike advocate is blown away by biking in Portland. Just imagine how blown away she’d be by Los Angeles, which scored 15 places higher on that list up above.

Life is cheap in Texas, where you can kill a seven-year old little girl in front of her school and walk without even a ticket.

With no apparent sense of irony, a Providence, Rhode Island letter writer says bike advocates should have a more inclusive vision for the city, while insisting there’s no room for bike lanes on the city’s streets.

Streetsblog accuses New York Mayor Bill De Blasio of hypocrisy for encouraging corporate ebike deliveries while banning ebike food deliveries. Meanwhile, the state’s governor is sitting on a bill that would legalize ebikes throughout the state because of an unrelated dispute with the bill’s sponsor.

New York doormen are worried about conflicts between customers and people on bicycles as bike lanes expand throughout the city. Or they could just assume that bike lanes are meant for people on bicycles. Not tourists with suitcases.

 

International

British six-time Olympic gold medalist Sir Chris Hoy offers tips on how to teach your child to ride a bike. Because everyone knows Olympic track cycling is the ideal background for the best sidewalk bike coaches.

Get your next H&M order delivered by bicycle. But only if you live in the Netherlands, of course.

 

Finally…

Now you can gravel grind and ride epic singletrack without ever leaving the comfort of your own home. It’s not a bicycle, it’s an artist’s brush.

And it’s one thing to attack the leader of Britain’s Labour Party. But making fun of his bike is going too damn far.

Morning Links: Missing bollards in DTLA, LA Walks celebrates, and new LA River bridge unofficially opens

It’s a light news day as we lead into the actual holiday season. As opposed to the one that started shortly before Halloween.

So let’s all remember to ride safely and defensively the next few days.

And try to keep it that way.

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Eric Solomon sends word that Los Angeles officials appear to be doing their best to make the protected bike lanes on Spring Street in DTLA a little less safe.

I noticed that some of the bollards on the Spring Street Bike lane have been removed from the edge of intersections, allowing cars turning left to cut through the bike lane rather than make their turn from the middle of the intersection.

After all, you wouldn’t want to inconvenience motorists a little just to improve safety for people who aren’t encased in a few tons of glass and steel.

Right?

Update: Solomon reports today that the bollards have been replaced.

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Los Angeles Walks will honor leading walking advocates at their annual soirée next month, with tickets starting at $150.

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It looks like the striking new bike and pedestrian suspension bridge over the Los Angeles River is finally open.

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That feeling when you need the entire road for your oversized vehicle.

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‘Tis the Season.

Oklahoma City volunteers built 1,400 bicycles for children in need.

Nashville’s Toys for Tots program ensured over one thousand kids will get a new bike for the holidays.

The generous owners of an English bike shop gave a new bike to a 13-year old autistic boy, after the one he used to strengthen his hips and legs following surgery was stolen while his family was away.

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

An Ontario, Canada driver discovers he can skip traffic by using a curb-protected bike lane that’s a perfect fit for his SUV.

Sometimes it’s the people on bikes behaving badly.

Cal State San Marcos police are looking for a man who exposed himself and jerked off in front of a pair of women, before riding off on a bicycle.

Talk about instant karma in action. Police in Corpus Christi TX are looking for a man who rode his bike up to a woman and snatched her purse, then crashed into a truck as he made his getaway; he ran off, leaving his bike and gun behind.

Seriously, how big an asshole do you have to be to give another bike rider a punishment pass?

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Local

No news is good news, right?

 

State

Still more sad news from Northern California, where a homeless man was killed when he was struck by several drivers while riding on a freeway in Richmond; at least one of the drivers fled the scene. As with other similar cases recently, there’s no explanation for why he was riding there.

A Sonoma columnist says the $20 million it took to build a new protected pedestrian and bicycle lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge was money well spent to fight climate change.

Hundreds of Chico bike riders raided thrift stores or their grandparent’s closets to turn out for this year’s Tweed Ride. Even if the local paper had to explain what tweed is.

 

National

A Buddhist “Monk on a Bike” is riding westward across the US after riding across the country in the opposite direction last year, in an effort to connect with the spirit of America and call attention to Alzheimer’s disease, which recently took his father’s life.

Good news for randonneurs, as a new 10-year study shows extreme exercise — working out 35 hours a week — doesn’t create any additional heart risks.

The Seattle Times calls on Washington lawmakers to require bike helmets for everyone, saying the benefits are unquestioned. Even though numerous studies have questioned the benefits of mandating helmets. And no, bike helmets aren’t the equivalent of seat belts. 

The man who killed a Mesa AZ bike rider in 2006 was finally arrested, 13 years  after fleeing to Mexico.

A Tucson man has built his own interactive website to help bike riders find safe and quiet routes to ride.

A Denver bike advocate rebuts a pair of op-eds from a Koch-funded pro-driving group that say the best way to fight traffic congestion and pollution is to just keep putting more cars on the roads.

The local Buffalo NY newspaper says a battalion of lobbyists are pushing for the governor to sign a bill that would allow dockless ebikes and e-scooters in the state. Then again, so are countless average New Yorkers, who simply want to use them.

New York is getting a bike mayor — and a pedestrian mayor. Which is two more than we have in ostensibly progressive Los Angeles.

I still want to be like him when I grow up. As promised, a Florida pastor celebrated his 82nd birthday by riding his age; he’s put 30,000 miles on his bike since he bought it 14 years ago.

 

International

Evidence continues to grow refuting the belief that ebikes are cheating, as studies show they give you the same physiological benefits as regular bikes.

A tech entrepreneur says the future of the bicycle industry is using bikes, rather than owning them.

Toronto pedestrian advocates are up in arms after police gave seniors reflective armbands to keep them safe at night, instead of doing something to improve safety on the streets.

The ebike revolution is passing by Northern Ireland because the country has failed to reclassify them like the rest of the UK did; current law classifies them as mo-peds instead of bikes, requiring additional tax, insurance and a license.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. Despite calling him “intemperate and reckless,” an Irish judge let a road raging Dublin man walk with probation and a fine for deliberately running down a bike rider — even though the driver had six previous convictions.

Outside takes a deep dive into the story of Jay Austin and Lauren Geoghegan, the American bike tourists on an around the world journey who were murdered by terrorists in Tajikistan two years ago, after 369 days on the road. The pair have been posthumously, and unfairly, ridiculed in some quarters for their positive outlook and faith in humanity.

After an Australian drunk driver ran down a bike rider, instead of checking on the victim or calling the Down Under equivalent of 911, he stood next to his car and texted his sister to call a good lawyer; he apparently found one, since the judge sentenced him to just three years behind bars.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former male pro cyclist Philippa York says transitioning to a woman after she retired taught her about transphobia and homophobia in the sport.

 

Finally…

If you happen to be carrying a bomb in your backpack, try not to break any bike laws.

And you’re not a real bike mechanic until you can forge your own bike parts out of aluminum cans over an open fire.

 

Morning Links: How LA became deadly for bicyclists, LA River bike path closed, and 2nd Forsyth Cup tomorrow

Powerful piece in Outside Magazine examining how Los Angeles became the world’s deadliest city for bicyclists.

Mayor Eric Garcetti seemingly addressed street-safety concerns in his annual budget proposal, setting aside a record-high $38 million for his signature traffic program Vision Zero. Now in its third year, the ambitious plan aims to eliminate all road deaths by 2025. “Fatalities are not a tolerable byproduct of transportation,” Garcetti said when he launched Vision Zero in August 2015. “Loss of life and severe injuries resulting from traffic crashes are unacceptable outcomes that we can address.”

April’s rash of hit-and-runs, however, show how the city’s Vision Zero program has gotten off to a rough start. Despite two years of analyzing data and installing small-scale safety measures like curb extensions and high-visibility crosswalks, last year was the deadliest in more than a decade: 245 people died on L.A. streets, nearly double the year before. More than 60 percent were hit and killed while walking or riding a bike—a 5 percent increase from when Vision Zero began.

The story looks at the power of LA city councilmembers to halt traffic safety projects in their districts, and the bikelash from angry drivers that forced the removal of bike lanes in Playa del Rey. As well as cowing councilmembers into canceling planned bike lanes in their districts.

And how Frederick “Woon” Frazier paid the price, killed by a hit-and-run driver on Manchester Blvd where a bike lane was supposed to be stripped, but wasn’t.

The piece also quotes yours truly and other LA bike advocates. But you’ll have to read it to see what we said.

Meanwhile, Bicycling picks up the story we discussed recently that ranked Los Angeles and New York as the nation’s two most dangerous cities for bike riders.

Never mind that they are also the nation’s two most populous cities, with a relatively high rate of bicycling. And would likely rank significantly lower if the study considered bicycling fatalities on a per capita basis.

Photo of Frederick “Woon” Frazier, killed in a hit-and-run on Manchester Blvd, where plans called for a bike lane as part of the Vision Zero High Injury Network.

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The LA River bike path will be closed until 2 pm tomorrow as a result of Wednesday’s thunderstorms.

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The second race in the Wolfpack Hustle 2018 Forsyth Cup takes place tomorrow at the Encino Velodrome. And once again, BikinginLA sponsor Thomas Forsyth will provide free hot dogs and hamburgers until they run out.

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My Figueroa looks at some of the connections the new protected bikeway will make possible.

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Local

A Bogota, Columbia newspaper looks at the spread of the city’s ciclovía to the City of Angels.

LA designers recommend bikes and e-scooters to get around during the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics; one suggests creating a permanent carfree CicLAvia route during the games.

Go Human is hosting a pop-up tomorrowon Glendora Ave in West Covina.

A Santa Clarita public safety campaign tells bike riders and runners to keep their “Heads Up.” Because really, bike riders and runners failing to look up is the primary cause of most crashes, right?

Santa Monica is ready to begin construction on connecting the city’s bike network to the Expo Line.

 

State

Ebikes are currently banned on state and federal trails, though that could change once California issues statewide regulations.

San Clemente commissioners delay a vote to allow ebikes on beach trails, while voting to require bike riders to walk across bridges, and limiting bikes to 6 mph on trails less than 10 feet wide.

California’s famed Highway 1 has re-opened through Big Sur after last year’s mud slide, to the delight of fantasizing bicyclists everywhere.

Uber discovers that San Franciscans would rather rent an ebike than take an Uber.

 

National

A new book by Adonia Lugo says bike advocates need to consider issues of race and class in bicycle planning discussions.

Merriam-Webster defines ten two-wheeled words every cyclist will want to know.

Chinese dockless bikeshare company Ofo is in rapid retreat in North America.

Fast Company takes a look at how much space American cities waste on parking.

A pair of academic librarians are taking three months off to bike across the country visiting libraries from DC to Oregon.

Hawaii became the latest state to adopt a three-foot passing law.

Portland bike riders have been slow to accept the city’s first parking protected bike lane.

Seattle considers adding more protected bike lanes in the downtown area, creating a full network of safe bikeways in the city within the next two years.

This is how you invite bike tourism. Arizona unveils a user-friendly, statewide online bike map, showing local bikeways as well as the 573-mile section of US Bicycle Route 90 through the state.

A member of the Moscow city council — no, the one in Idaho — just finished a 4,300 mile ride across the US following the Trans Am Bike Race route; he’s also the owner of the Hog Heaven Sausage Works.

In a problem bike riders nearly everywhere can relate to, a Chicago TV station took a 30-minute ride through the downtown area and ran into 18 blocked bike lanes.

Boston bikeshare companies say please use a seat cover if you’re going to ride sans culottes and/or au natural.

No surprise here, as NYC, which until recently banned all ebikes, has no plans to allows e-scooters.

Life is cheap in New York, where a truck driver who killed a bike rider in a left cross collision walks with just a $1,088 fine and a measly 75-day license suspension.

Philadelphia is the latest city to embrace human protected bike lanes to call attention to the need for safer infrastructure. Which have yet to make an appearance here in Los Angeles, on either count.

DC bicyclists and pedestrians turn out to protest a recent series of traffic death; as one advocate said, Vision Zero is a radical vision that requires a radical shift in how we do things. Meanwhile, a DC advocacy group says the term has lost its meaning, so just demand streets that don’t kill people.

A Virginia letter writer argues against a lane reduction and adding bike lanes when a street is repaved, calling it one of the safest corridors in the city — even though the city says it has one of the highest rates of KSI (killed or seriously injured) crashes.

Apparently, the US Postal Service is totally okay with their trucks blocking New York bike lanes.

Probably not the best idea to rear-end a police cruiser stopped on the shoulder of a Maryland highway.

 

International

You may be able to plug in your next Bianchi. But who says ebikes have to be heavy?

The stupidest advice for beginning cyclists.

Self recommends 12 international bicycling destinations you’ll want to add to your bike bucket list. I can personally attest to the second one, which travels over new trails through some of the most beautiful country in the US.

A Canadian bike rider was charged after crashing into the back of a truck while using his cellphone.

Toronto’s ambitious plan for new bike lanes is already falling behind, just two years after it was adopted. A feeling we in Los Angeles know all too well.

Road.cc looks at the new bike helmets introduced at the recent Eurobike. And considers the laws regarding bike bells in the UK, after a bizarre debate on the subject in the House of Lords.

London’s Telegraph questions whether you can really get fit riding an ebike. Short answer, yes, as long as it’s a ped-assist bike.

A British letter writer says bike racks may be ugly, but it’s better than having trees cut down by bike thieves after riders lock their bikes to them.

A Brit bike rider says go ahead and buzz him. Which is undoubtedly a minority opinion.

Police in the UK use an undercover officer on a bicycle equipped with cameras and distance sensors to catch drivers violating the country’s 1.5-meter safe passing distance, the equivalent of a five foot law here. We’ve repeatedly asked the LAPD to conduct similar operations, pointing out that distance sensors are now readily available. But no luck so far.

An Oslo study shows 45 minutes of bicycling can help ward off Type 2 diabetes, and ebikes could be key to helping people ride enough to protect their health. Although I put in over ten times that much every week for 30 years, and it didn’t do me a damn bit of good.

Another Oslo study has shown yet again that the health benefits of bicycling cancel out the risks of breathing dirty air.

Four members of a Saudi women’s bike team have become the first from that country to participate in the Global Biking Initiative (GBI) European tour.

 

Competitive Cycling

Yes, Team Sky holds the yellow jersey in the Tour de France. But if you haven’t been following the race, it’s probably not who you think.

Mark Cavendish vows to come back next year after missing the time cut on Wednesday’s stage, Marcel Kittel also missed the cut.

Columbian cyclist Rigoberto Uran withdrew after crashing on the cobbles during Sunday’s stage.

Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali, who finished fourth last year, is also out after falling as a result of a crash between police motos; remarkably, he finished just 13 seconds behind the winner on the legendary Alpe d’Huez despite riding with a fractured vertebrae.

World champ Peter Sagan and his wife are getting divorced, less than four years after their very splashy marriage.

Malaysian cycling team had all ten of their bikes stolen from an Edmonton, Canada velodrome where they were training; kindhearted locals have pitched in to loan them replacements.

 

Finally…

Screw the race, what we really need is a better video game. Just stay the elk out of the forest for a few months, already.

And if you’re going to ride salmon on the freeway, at least wear a helmet. And some clothes.

 

Morning Links: Bike-related SoCal shootings, bad MyFig bike signals, and drunken victim blaming by PBS

It’s been a violent few days in Southern California.

Tragic story from Santa Ana, where a woman collecting recyclables was barely able to get off her bike in time before a truck slammed into it early yesterday. Only to discover the driver was already dead or dying from a gunshot wound; police are unsure where or how he got shot.

And man was shot as he and a woman were riding their bicycles on the LA River bike path in Long Beach on Wednesday. Although given the date, it’s possible it could have been caused by some idiot firing a gun into the air to celebrate the 4th.

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Michael MacDonald, aka topomodesto, offers a scathing indictment of the bike traffic signals on the new MyFigueroa bike lanes.

https://twitter.com/topomodesto/status/1014881629397921792

The response from LADOT simply says they’re still fine-tuning the street.

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Today’s must-read is a powerful op-ed from a pair of Toronto bicyclists and political science professors, who say it’s anarchy on the streets for the city’s cyclists.

An affluent city in which the act of riding a bike means our parents, partners, children and friends can die violent deaths is a travesty. A police force that won’t protect us should be ashamed. A legal system that won’t punish offenders is a farce. City councillors who won’t allocate funds to protect lives should be pushed out of office.

Until the city asserts its proper authority, the act of cycling in Toronto will remain a nasty, brutish and deadly experience.

Much of which applies to Los Angeles, as well. From a legal system that too often lets deadly drivers off with a slap on the wrist — if they get charged at all — to councilmembers who don’t just refuse to fund projects, but actually halt already funded safety projects.

And who should be pushed out here as well if they refuse to protect the lives and safety of their constituents, and anyone else who uses the streets of this city.

………

On the other hand, PBS NewsHour offers an incredibly wrong-headed report blaming drunk pedestrians for the rise in pedestrian deaths.

Not distracted drivers. Or even poorly designed SUVs.

A third of pedestrians killed in crashes in 2016 were over the legal limit, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. That’s nearly 2,000 people — up more than 300 since 2014.

“Those numbers are pretty shocking,” said Jonathan Adkins, executive director of the Governors Highway Safety Association, which represents state highway safety offices. “We think this is a big problem.”

Sure.

Except there is no legal limit for walking, because unlike operating a deadly two-ton machine, drinking doesn’t significantly impair moving your feet unless you get stumbling, falling down drunk.

Never mind that the report doesn’t specify how many of those intoxicated pedestrians were actually at fault, or did anything to contribute to their demise other than simply being there.

And it doesn’t mention how many of those deaths were actually caused by a lack of safe sidewalks and crosswalks that may have forced victims out into the street. Other than to suggest you should walk a quarter mile in each direction to get to a safe crossing rather than simply run across the street, like most people would do, drunk or sober.

Let alone the simple fact that if one-third of the victims were under the influence, that means the overwhelming majority weren’t.

We could spend hours picking this one apart.

But let’s just say this story is an incredible, stinking example victim-blaming windshield bias.

And PBS should be ashamed of it.

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Local

KPCC says LeBron could use the new MyFigueroa bike lane to get to Staples Center, except it’s full of parked cars.

 

State

A San Diego TV station explains how the city’s new bike boxes improve safety for bicyclists.

Now living in Los Gatos, mountain biking legend Juliana Furtado speaks out about the risk of suicide and depression, saying she’s lucky to have survived the disease that took the lives of her mother and older sister.

San Francisco-based Spin is bailing on bikes, and getting onboard the dockless e-scooter craze.

A Sonoma County Facebook group is teaming together to help recover stolen bicycles.

Sad news from Santa Rosa, where a man was killed in a crash with two hit-and-run drivers while riding his bike to see his kids; one of the drivers was arrested four miles away.

 

National

That car exhaust you suck in when you ride might be putting you at greater risk for diabetes. It’s frightening to think I might not have inherited my adult-onset diabetes from my mother after all, but gotten it from 30 plus years of riding in traffic instead.

A writer for Forbes says if you want to stay safe on the streets, you need to get radar taillight. Meanwhile, SoCal pro cyclist Coryn Rivera lists the gear she says you need to stay safe on a road bike.

A local magazine says sprawling, auto-centric Dallas could become a bike city. And if Big D can do it, so can Los Angeles.

A Detroit man is spending his weekends on his bike to photograph the city’s street art.

A Michigan court ordered a new trial over a $1 million judgement in the death of a six-year old boy who was killed riding his bike on a fairgrounds trail, after the fairgrounds argued the boy’s father was to blame for letting him ride there.

An Indiana bike rider was hit by a car, which apparently didn’t have a driver. And despite the statements from a bystander blaming the victim for not having a helmet — and who doesn’t think bikes belong on the road — a witness to the crash says a helmet wouldn’t have kept him from getting run down from behind. Thanks to Melissa McCurley for the heads-up.

Instead of making bridges safe for bike riders — or even legal, for that matter — Newport RI is now offering to drive them across the bridges on shuttle buses.

A Buffalo NY bike rider who refers to himself in the second person does the highly flawed math, and says streets aren’t wide enough for bike lanes.

New York is making plans to fix a scary gap in the city’s bike network. Meanwhile, most of LA’s bike network is a scary gap.

Philly bicyclists demand that drivers stop parking in bike lanes. Meanwhile, an op-ed says the way to build a better Philadelphia is to design it for everyone from 8 to 80.

Baton Rouge LA bike advocates say their best hope for changing the city’s bike unfriendly nature died along with a city councilmember who was run down from behind while riding his bike last week.

 

International

Horrifying video from Vancouver, where a bike rider gets right hooked by a massive gas tanker truck, which proceeds to run over her bicycle just as she jumps to safety.

Great advice for motorists from a Yukon columnist, who says drivers are responsible for 90% of crashes with bicyclists.

Good advice from the CBC in Winnipeg on how to avoid having your bike stolen. And how to avoid buying a hot one.

Guardian readers recommend ten European trips to add to your bike bucket list.

A UK writer ranks every type of bike rider from worst to least worst, saying there’s no such thing as an actively good cyclist. Even though she professes to write from the perspective of one.

 

Competitive Cycling

American Tejay van Garderen won’t be competing to win the Tour de France; instead he’ll be riding in support of team leader Richie Porte.

SB Nation says the Tour de France is a parade of dreams, and every moment of the tour is the highlight of someone’s life.

A new biography of America’s last remaining Tour de France winner credits Berkeley with spawning the modern bicycle-racing boom.

Seven TdF teams will be sucking down their $33 a bottle ketones sports drinks during this year’s race.

A group of women cyclists are riding the full Tour de France route one day ahead of the men competing in the race, while still contending with traffic and other inconveniences. But sure, let’s go ahead and pretend women can’t handle long stage races or difficult courses.

Good profile from Peter Flax, who says world road champ Peter Sagan is an enigma wrapped in rainbow stripes.

This is what happens to cyclists with questionable test results who don’t have Chris Froome’s money or Team Sky’s lawyers.

Now you, too, can own your very own Tour de France bike for a mere twelve grand.

The 805 Thousand Oaks Grand Prix rolls this weekend.

 

Finally…

Oh sure, anyone can ride around the world on two wheels. Actually, Khloe Kardashian doesn’t look a bit like she’s competing in the Tour de France, or any other bike race.

And no need to what until you stop, just grill your food while you ride.

Morning Links: LA raises speed limits, Vision Zero holds course, and LA River Bike Path reopens in Long Beach

One quick note. Come back after 11:00 this morning for a guest post from Derrick Paul about the planned Vision Zero lane reduction and complete street project on Temple Street. 

And why it hasn’t happened.

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Los Angeles will be raising speed limits on nearly 100 miles of streets to comply with California’s deadly 85th Percentile Law, which allows drivers to set speed limits by applying their foot to the gas pedal.

Meanwhile, speed limits will decrease somewhat on a little more than 52 miles of streets.

The tradeoff is that police will now be able to use radar to enforce speeds, which they had been banned from doing on nearly 80% of LA streets.

Under the terms of the law, police can’t use radar to enforce the speed limit if a street hasn’t had a speed survey within the last seven years.

Once the survey is conducted, the speed limit must be set at the speed driven by the 15th fastest motorist driving unimpeded in non-rush hour traffic, although the city does have the option to round down slightly.

So in order to make our streets safer, we have to make them faster and more dangerous.

Or just repeal a stupid, outdated and deadly law.

Correction: In my haste last night, I mistakenly wrote that the 85th Percentile Law was based on the average speed of 85% of motorists, ignoring my gut feeling that I was wrong, but too tired to stop and look it up.

And I was right. That I was wrong, that is. 

The following email from Casey Kerrigan clarifies this complicated law better than any other explanation I’ve seen. 

When doing the speed survey the speed limit is based on the 85 percentile not on the average speed of 85% of the cars surveyed.  Note that speed surveys are conduced under the optimal conditions to speed, ie during the day, at a non rush hour time and only the speed of free flowing cars are measures. Free flowing are cars with no traffic ahead of them for at least 5 seconds on a straightaway and unmarked cars are used to house the speed measurement equipment.
This is from the Caltrans guidelines for how to set speed limits which you can find here.
This paragraph is taken from the Caltrans guidelines linked above on page 36.

3.2.6 Calculating 85th Percentile Speed

If 100 vehicle speeds are plotted, the 85th percentile speed is determined by looking at the speed of the 15th vehicle down from the top speed. Fifteen percent of the vehicles are travelling faster than this speed, and eighty five percent are travelling at or below this speed. If less than 100 vehicles are counted, the 85th percentile speed must be determined by calculating 85 percent of the number of vehicles counted and determining the vehicles’ 85th percentile speed. For example if 70 vehicles were counted, 0.85 x 70 = 59.5. The speed of vehicle 60 represents the 85th percentile. Examples are shown in Appendix A on the Speed Zone Survey Sheet examples.

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Speaking of which, Vision Zero Los Angeles has released their 2018 Action Plan & Progress Report.

The city plans to remain on course with the program, despite a sharp jump in pedestrian deaths, and badly missing Mayor Eric Garcetti’s goal of a 20% reduction in traffic fatalities in 2017.

Of course, that was overly ambitious, since the program is just now gaining its footing and getting its first real funding.

………

The LA River Bike Path has reopened in Long Beach, where it had been closed for construction work, now that a large construction crane has been removed.

However, work vehicles and flaggers will remain on the path, and riders may be required to slow down or walk their bikes through the construction zone.

Thanks to Long Beach Mobility and Healthy Living Programs Officers Michelle Mowery for the heads-up.

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Rent-a-cops driving on a Chicago bike path lose it when a bike rider complains that they don’t belong on the path. Thanks to J. Patrick Lynch for the link.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bfub83XnlZo/

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Local

The victim’s missing head was finally found in an LA multi-modal murder.

A UCLA letter writer says scofflaw Bird scooter users are no worse than bike riders, who he can’t recall ever having seen “obey the traffic laws to the letter.” Unlike pedestrians and motorists, who evidently always obey the letter of the law in his eyes.

CiclaValley imagines what a re-imagined, bike-friendly Ventura Blvd could be.

The Pasadena Star News looks at the proposal to reconfigure Orange Grove Blvd into a complete street that welcomes everyone.

 

State

Seven proposed U.S. Bicycle Routes could soon be coming to, and through, California.

Encinitas-based cruiser bike-maker Electra Bicycle Company turns 25.

Cycling Without Age comes to Merced.

A pair of dueling Op-Eds in the Sacramento Bee say a bill to allow mountain bikes in wilderness areas would be good for the backcountry, while another calls it a Trojan horse that would put wheels over wilderness.

 

National

Bike Snob says enough with the helmet shaming, already.

Streetsblog says American cities aren’t making much progress on Vision Zero, except for New York and San Francisco. Although for some reason, they aren’t tracking Los Angeles on their chart.

A Seattle-area man had his bike stolen after he was hit on the head with a pipe. No word on whether he was wearing a helmet, which might have helped. Or not.

Washington is the latest state to approve an ebike classification bill based on the one pioneered in California.

Great idea, as a Washington bike school teams with a woodworking school to teach everything from wrenching to wood frame and wheel building.

Evidently, LA drivers aren’t the only ones who complain about removing traffic lanes from massive streets. Tempe AZ will restripe a roadway to remove bollards protecting a bike lane and add back a third traffic lane in response to motorist complaints.

You’ve got to be kidding. Just days after the Utah house approved an Idaho stop law, a bill that would allow drivers to also treat red lights as stop signs passed a legislative committee. After all, what difference could there possibly be between someone on a 15-pound bike and someone wrapped in two tons of high-speed glass and steel? I mean, other than the bodies the latter would likely leave behind?

Plans for a new bridge on I-10 in Mobile, Alabama will be required to include options for bicycle and pedestrian pathways.

 

International

Cycling Tips offers advice on how to use music to get the best out of your rides. They probably don’t mean singing Hank Williams out loud while you ride, as someone who looks a lot like me may or may not have done on occasion.

Toronto rejects a staff recommendation to remove lanes from a major street, and keep it six lanes and dangerous instead.

Caught on video: British police use bike cam video to prosecute a 50 mph punishment pass, resulting in the equivalent of a $365 fine. A much better punishment would be to make the driver stand in the roadway while someone else does it to him.

The Irish government will introduce a safe passing law mandating that drivers pass bicyclists with the rough equivalent of three feet on roads with a speed limit below 31 mph, and five feet above that.

Eat and bike your way across Italy with Top Chef contestants.

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war bikes is all too real, as Aussie bicyclists find thumbtacks spread across at least four popular riding routes. Far from a harmless prank, something like that can cause serious injuries — or worse — if a flat causes a rider to fall. And should be prosecuted as such.

The government of Queensland, Australia, has introduced a presumed liability bill, which would presume that the operator of the more dangerous vehicle has a greater responsibility to avoid crashes, and would be considered at fault in a collision; the head of the local auto club calls it a divisive bill that pits motorists against cyclists. Actually, motorists have done that themselves for decades.

 

Finally…

Your WiFi depends on a Hollywood bombshell who escaped Nazis and an unhappy marriage on a bicycle. It’s golf balls over bikes on the beach.

And can a serial burglar really be a bad guy if he rides a bike and leaves the homes neat and tidy?

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Thanks to View-Speed for their generous contribution to help keep BikinginLA coming your way every day. Click here if you’d like to donate to help support this site

 

Morning Links: LA Times says stop killing pedestrians, and Metro plans LA River bike path through DTLA

A writer for the LA Times says it’s time to stop killing pedestrians, and calls on the city to invest in smart infrastructure — including road diets — to “protect motorists, cyclists and pedestrians from each other and from themselves.”

Which is exactly what Vision Zero is supposed to be about.

But so far, isn’t.

At least not in Los Angeles.

Thanks to Stanley E. Goldich for the heads-up.

………

Metro unveils plans to extend the LA River bike path eight miles through DTLA between Elysian Valley and Vernon.

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LA County will host a community meeting on December 5th to discuss the proposed Complete Streets project for Rosemead Blvd.

The County of Los Angeles is hosting a community meeting for the Rosemead Boulevard Complete Streets Improvement (CSI) Project – Phase I. Stop by any time during the community meeting on December 5 to learn about the proposed complete street enhancements, share your ideas on a vision for Rosemead Bl and talk to Project team members. Spanish interpreters will be available.

  • Tuesday, December 5, 2017 – 6:00 – 8:00 p.m., Pico Rivera Municipal Golf Course, 3260 Fairway Dr., Pico Rivera, CA 90660

For more information, contact Martin Reyes, Principal Civil Engineering Assistant, at 844-588-8877. Please visit the webpage for more information at www.dpw.lacounty.gov/go/rosemeadCS.

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As we’ve noted before, the war on cars is a myth. But the war on bikes is all too real.

A San Bernardino driver allegedly used his car to murder a bike-riding acquaintance.

A British driver is charged with slapping a bike rider, then driving up on the sidewalk and confronting him again.

French pro cyclist Yoann Offredo was fined the equivalent of $833 for an altercation with a road raging driver and her passenger, even though he claimed he was just defending himself; they were fined, as well.

A road raging New Zealand driver jumped a curb and drove onto a sidewalk to run down a bike rider, then got out of his car and told the victim his broken leg serves him right; police arrested the driver thanks to the victim’s photo of his license plate.

………

Then again, sometimes bike riders are the bad guys.

A Fresno bike rider was caught on video stealing from a donation box.

A road raging San Francisco bicyclist was arrested for allegedly boarding a bus to attack the driver.

And a Wisconsin man is facing charges for a sexual assault spree while riding his bike.

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Don’t make the Corgi beg. Your donation will help keep this site online, and keep her in kibble.

This is day five of the 3rd Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive. Your support helps keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

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

As always, any donation, in any amount, is truly and deeply appreciated.

And thanks to Wesley R, Harvey W, Fred D, Patrick M, Guillermo A, Todd R, Bernard B, Elizabeth T, Anne M and Andrew F for their generous donations to help support this site.

………

Local

An allegedly drunk driver in North Hills was arrested after plowing into six parked cars and killing a mother as she carried her infant son. Once again, authorities managed to keep a dangerous driver with a previous DUI conviction on the roads until he killed someone.

A Mar Vista tattoo artist says the Venice Blvd Great Streets project has caused a drop-off in business, and forced him to ride his bike to work because there’s never any parking. Or as the great Yogi Berra once said, “Nobody goes there anymore; it’s too crowded.”

A former South Pasadena public works commissioner says it doesn’t matter if a road diet and bike lanes are feasible on Monterey Road, because the public won’t stand for it. Sadly, given the toxic atmosphere in the LA area these days, he’s probably right.

Pasadena plans to install new bike racks in Brookside Park.

Pasadena considers alternatives to the most likely cancelled 710 Freeway extension, including building bike lanes to help mitigate traffic.

 

State

California regulators finally released updated CEQA rules, which will no longer require developers and planners to consider a proposed project’s effects on traffic congestion. Which should make it much easier to build bike lanes by removing a frequent tool used by opponents. That was the basis for one of the lawsuits filed against the Vista del Mar lane reduction, which helped force the removal of the project; hopefully there will be a different result next time.

A San Diego talk radio host has started a petition to repeal California’s recent gas tax hike intended to repair the state’s broken roads. Anyone who signs it should be permanently prohibited from complaining about traffic or bad streets.

 

National

Fast Company considers what it will take to get more women on bicycles.

Bicycling looks at the best bags for bike commuters.

Chicago is working to separate bicyclists and pedestrians along the entire 18-mile length of the popular Lakefront Trail.

People playing Pokémon Go while driving caused two deaths and up to $25 million in damages in one Indiana county alone last year.

New York could be the next city to hop on the dockless bikeshare bandwagon. Unless Houston beats them to it.

A witness says a New York driver ran a red light at a high rate of speed before fatally plowing into a 14-year bike delivery boy. So naturally, the NYPD will give the driver a pass.

Life is cheap in the Big Apple, where an allegedly stoned driver walks without a single day behind bars after pleading guilty to vehicular manslaughter in the death of a bike rider.

 

International

Thieves stole 27 test bikes, as well as high-end wheels, worth the equivalent of nearly $200,000 from British bike magazine Cycling Weekly; the gear was on hand to be photographed for the magazine’s Editor’s Choice awards. Speaking of the magazine, it was included in the $2.8 billion sale of Time Magazine and other publications to a company partially financed by the conservative Koch brothers.

An English university paper offers seven bike safety tips for students, only three of which actually have anything to do with safety. And apparently they couldn’t come up with a picture of a bike helmet.

A British bicyclist describes a crash last week where a driver plowed into him and three other cyclists, including his wife, as they rode single file; fortunately, none were seriously injured.

An English woman is riding around New Zealand on a DIY bamboo bike to spread an anti-plastic message.

The Guardian writes about the challenges of riding in the winter and how to overcome them. Although Britain’s Cyclist Magazine offers more practical advice for riding in wet weather, much of which even applies here in usually sunny SoCal.

Iran faces the challenge of getting women off bikes, not on them, as the country’s supreme leader issues a fatwa prohibiting women from riding bicycles in public, or in the presence of strangers or non-family members.

Aussie researchers are shocked! shocked! to discover people on bicycles actually ride in the traffic lanes on regular streets.

 

Competitive Cycling

Everything you always wanted to know about the Tour de France, but were afraid to ask.

The board of the Polish cycling federation has been asked to resign over charges that cyclists and staff members had been drugged, raped and molested by a high-ranking official.

 

Finally…

Yes, cycling has benefits for fitness, even if they can’t seem to decide which kind they’re talking about. Evidently, you can have satisfying sex with your bike.

And maybe it’s not the best idea to jump from a moving bicycle onto an ATV to make a bust.

Or try to, anyway.

 

Morning Links: Trade your bike or bag at Timbuk2, O’Farrell endorses Bray-Ali, and Montana bike tax an unfunny joke

Here’s your chance to get a new bike or bike bag and support a good cause at the same time, as Timbuk2 and Pure Cycles host a special trade-in event this weekend at the Timbuk2 store on Abbott Kinney in Venice.

During store hours, visitors will have the chance to bring in any worn bag or bike in exchange for a 30% off discount on any Timbuk2 product or Pure Cycles Bike. On top of that, all donated items will go to Bikerowave, a Los Angeles-based non-profit that will be on-site to discuss with donators on how their contributions will help the community of Los Angeles.

………

Big news in the CD1 race, as 13th District Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell has endorsed challenger Joe Bray-Ali over incumbent Gil Cedillo. According to the LA Times,

“Joe Bray-Ali understands the issues facing Los Angeles and demonstrates a sense of urgency in addressing the affordable housing crises, safety in our neighborhoods, and responsiveness to constituent needs,” O’Farrell said in a prepared statement. “His positive grassroots campaign has motivated more people to participate in the democratic process at the local level and become engaged in the pressing issues that affect Angelenos. This city faces daunting challenges and we need someone like Joe to bring a fresh perspective, new ideas, and an open mind to decision making for our city.”

It’s almost unheard of for a sitting councilmember to endorse a challenger, especially one in the adjoining district.

Although, as several people reminded me today, Cedillo endorsed termed-out county Supervisor Gloria Molina over Jose Huizar just two years ago. In other words, LA’s most anti-bike councilmember was opposing one of the city’s best in the district next door.

It will be interesting to see if Huizar returns the favor.

………

The City of Vernon wants your input on filling a major gap in the LA River bike path through the city.

And Metro wants your input on three proposed Long Beach bike paths within the I-710 corridor.

………

It turns out that proposal to charge a $25 fee for out-of-state bike riders using Montana roadways was just a very big, and very bad, April Fools joke.

I’m glad they think it was funny, even though it brought an incredible amount of bad publicity to the state, and caused bike riders around the world to rethink their plans to visit there.

………

More remembrances of the late great Steve Tilford, who was killed in a Utah car crash early Wednesday morning:

Meanwhile, VeloNews offers a guide to the cobbles of this weekend’s Paris – Roubaix. And Cycling Weekly says you don’t need a rule book for cycling, because you should just know all this stuff already.

………

Local

Horrible news from Firestone Park in unincorporated South LA County, where the occupants of a car got out and swarmed a man on a bike before stabbing him several times; he died at a nearby hospital.

Former Glendale state Assembly Member Mike Gatto is one of us, penning a great Op-Ed in the Times about the carfree lifestyle he’s maintained since 2012.

Los Angeles Magazine’s Neal Broverman calls out four LA area streets in desperate need of a pedestrian-friendly makeover. What’s good for pedestrians is usually good for bike riders, too.

Metro is now offering discounted Metro Bike memberships to businesses to encourage their employees to use the bikeshare service, in hopes of doubling its ridership rates by the end of next year.

Bike SGV takes issue with a recent story that blamed a Glendale bike rider for a crash.

We already knew chef Gordon Ramsay was one of us, getting up at 4 am every Sunday to put in 112 miles on his bike.

 

State

Calbike still has concerns following the passage of the state transportation bill that would double spending on active transportation projects, while significantly boosting funding for public transportation.

Streetsblog looks back favorably on last weekend’s successful Garden Grove open streets event.

San Diego’s Campagnolo GranFondo rolls this Sunday.

There’s something seriously wrong when a bike path becomes the most divisive issue in a community, as the proposed and long argued CV Link through the Coachella Valley appears to have become.

A Santa Barbara man is recovering from serious injuries after his bike was hit head-on while descending the famed Gibralter climb.

Bakersfield police recommend DUI and hit-and-run charges against a member of a prominent local family in the death of a bike rider earlier this year, even though he could have been charged with second degree murder due to a pervious DUI conviction.

A San Luis Obispo elementary school has been named the most bike friendly school in the US by the League of American Bicyclists.

 

National

While the rest of the country envies bike friendly Portland, Portland bicyclists push for more safety improvements.

Las Vegas police are looking for a suspect who rode his bicycle up to man outside a liquor store and shot him twice in the chest before riding away.

Colorado becomes the fourth state to pass a law classifying ebikes used on the roadways; California led the way by creating three classes of ebikes, based on their maximum speed, that took effect in 2016.

Family members have filed suit against the Ohio man accused of murdering a 20-year old college student after she went for a bike ride.

Arkansas rejects a bill that would have allowed children to play outside — and ride their bikes — without the supervision of a parent or guardian. Thanks to Ed Ryder for the heads-up.

Shreveport LA promises cyclists they’re getting a real bike plan, but gives them sharrows instead.

New Orleans delays consideration of an ordinance that would update existing bike laws, some of which haven’t been changed since the 1950s; the delay is so they can add penalties to the prohibition against drivers harassing bicyclists. Most of the changes make sense, except for a requirement that every bike have a bell; apparently there’s a backlog of Angels in need of wings.

The Atlanta Bicycle Coalition offers to help drivers hack their commutes by taking to bicycles following the collapse of the I-85 freeway through the city.

Former NYDOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan tells an appreciative Charlotte NC audience it’s time the city stopped focusing on cars.

There’s a new world record for the most miles ridden in a single year, as 24-year old Florida resident Amanda Coker shattered the old record of 76,076 with over five weeks left to go, averaging over 288 miles a day on her bike.

 

International

The Cuban cyclist attempting to build the world’s tallest ridable bike with the help of LA’s Ritchie Trimble, builder of the current record holder, has his attempt halted by the police. Literally.

London’s former cycling commissioner is keeping tabs on his successor, and doesn’t seem too happy about the lack of progress.

It only took a London jury 17 minutes to acquit a driver who killed a 70-year old man on a bicycle in Britain’s first crowdfunded private prosecution. So maybe there was a reason why the police declined to file, after all.

A Malaysian newspaper calls for providing safe places for kids to ride their bikes, and emulating a program from a neighboring state that guided teenagers away from illegally modified bikes and onto regular bicycles, while providing the training to become professional cyclists.

 

Finally…

No, seriously. If you’re riding your bike with an outstanding warrant, don’t ride on the damn sidewalk. Seriously, if you’re going to steal a bike, at least know why you did it.

And apparently, a British driver really didn’t want to know his brake light wasn’t working.

Morning Links: CD1 race gets dirtier, bike rider assaulted on LA River path, and fixing streets is Vision Zero, too

As predicted, incumbent CD1 Councilmember Gil Cedillo is getting down and dirty as he fights to retain his seat in the face of a strong challenge from outsider Joe Bray-Ali.

Today’s attack from the city’s most anti-bike councilmember comes in the form of repeated accusations that Bray-Ali is just a Republican in Democrat clothing. And that he only switched parties to run for office — fighting words in the strongly Democratic and independent district.

Except he isn’t. And didn’t.

Bray-Ali is the first to admit he was, briefly, registered as a Republican several years ago as he searched for his place in the political landscape, before landing in the Democratic party after equally brief stints as a Green and an independent.

And never mind that Los Angeles local elections are supposed to be non-partisan, so whatever the hell party he belongs to shouldn’t matter in the slightest.

More amusing is Cedillo’s claim that he’s running a grassroots campaign.

Which is absurd coming from a career politician who gets the overwhelming majority of his donations from outside the district. And who has been in bed with mega donors like Chevron and Walmart for years, leading to questions whether their donations have influenced his votes.

After Saturday’s bizarre Lyin’ Joe episode, and today’s overblown tweetstorm attacks, it’s starting to look like Gil has been studying at Trump U.

And learning all the wrong lessons about how to conduct a campaign.

………

A bike rider reports he was the victim of an assault on the LA River bike path at the Los Feliz overpass when he was punched by one of two men partially blocking the pathway.

Fortunately, he was able to maintain control of his bike, and didn’t stick around to find out what they wanted.

While incidents like this are relatively rare, it’s a reminder to always remain alert and aware of your surroundings when you ride, especially on bike paths or anywhere else out of direct public view. He did the smart thing by getting out of harms way as quickly as possible before stopping to call the police.

He doesn’t give the date or time of the attack, but it makes me wonder if that’s why I saw a CHP cruiser turn onto the bike path as I passed by on Los Feliz Monday afternoon.

LA bicyclists have long called for regular police patrols on the bike paths in the city and county, to little effect; incidents like this sometimes result in an increase in patrols, which die down after awhile as other hotspots take precedence.

Thanks to Chris Klibowitz for the heads-up.

………

I may not have made myself clear the other day.

While I am a strong believer in the need to fund Vision Zero projects in Los Angeles, and feel that it should take precedence over repaving streets and filling potholes, that doesn’t mean the latter isn’t important, as well.

As yesterday’s tragic news reminded us, bad roads can be an expensive annoyance to people on four wheels. But they can be deadly to those of us on two.

Vision Zero should not attempt to improve safety at the expense of our streets, but in conjunction with repaving efforts to ensure a safe riding, driving and walking environment for everyone. We have to somehow find room in the budget to pay for both.

Because it doesn’t matter whether our streets are dangerous because of aggressive drivers, bad road design or crumbling street surfaces. The results are the same.

And human lives are at stake.

………

This is seriously one of the scariest close passes I’ve ever seen, as a driver for a British market buzzes within inches of a cyclist. But says it’s okay since he didn’t cross into the extremely narrow bike lane.

Just as scary is the response from the company, which was basically “We didn’t hit him, so who cares?”

Thanks to Jon for the link.

………

I’ve never had a lot of heroes.

Willie Mays when I was younger, Bobby Kennedy and Dr. King as I got older, though both were gone before I reached my teens. But there are a lot of people I’ve admired; a few I’ve tried to emulate.

And one of the best and brightest of those was killed in crash early Wednesday morning.

Steve Tilford was everything I wanted to be as a young rider. A passionate cyclist who was among the first wave of American riders to storm Europe and show that we could compete on equal terms with the best names in the sport, he made it all seem effortless, competing on the road and winning in mountain biking and cyclocross.

According to various press reports, Tilford was driving on I-70 just west of the Colorado – Utah border when his van crashed into an overturned semi. He and his passenger were standing outside of the van, injured but okay, when a second semi plowed into the overturned truck, striking Tilford.

He died a few hours later at a hospital in Grand Junction, Colorado.

His passenger, Vincent Davis, was injured, and the driver of the second truck was killed as well.

VeloNews sums up the reaction in the cycling world, while the BMC Racing Team’s Jim Ochowicz remembers him and offers his condolences to Tilford’s partner Trudi Rebsamen, a soigneur with the team.

And Bicycling revives a 1998 profile of Tilford, saying he is why we ride.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I have something in my eye.

 

………

Another of those young riders from the 80s, American cycling great Andy Hampsten, is happy to share his love of cycling with young riders in Sonoma County.

Scientists are trying to take the hell of riding cobbles out of the Hell of the North.

………

Local

The jury’s still out on the 2024 Olympics, but LA will be hosting the 2017 Police & Fire Games.

Sunday marks the return of the Brompton Urban Bike Challenge scavenger hunt in DTLA.

Bike SGV invites you to attend the opening of the Jeff Seymour Family Center on Monday.

Topanga Canyon Blvd will be closed this weekend to repair storm damage and remove that big rock blocking the roadway.

Speaking of big rocks, CiclaValley discovers Big Rock Canyon.

 

State

The OC Breeze estimates that 15,000 people attended Saturday’s Garden Grove open streets event.

San Clemente plans to provide a safer route to an elementary school by improving bike lanes and sidewalks on Avenida del Presidente.

Indio is looking for public input on plans to install sidewalks and bike lanes. That’s easy. Yes. Please.

Sad news from the San Joaquin Valley, as a man was killed riding his bike in Southeast Bakersfield.

A Visalia man is scheduled to spend the next 34 years behind bars for shooting a bike rider from his moving car.

Bay Area bike riders will finally be able to ride halfway across the Bay Bridge on weekdays. Then turn around and ride back, since it will be several years before the bikeway goes all the way across, if then.

A UC Berkeley architecture professor wants you to bike along the big, not-so-beautiful wall already standing on the Mexico border with the US.

Folsom is planning to complete the Johnny Cash Trail near the prison where he recorded the best selling live album of all time.

Chico police bust an ebike thief who broke in from the shop next door to steal a $3,000 bike from a local dealer.

 

National

A writer for City Lab says bike helmet laws do more harm than good, and the idea that they improve overall safety for cyclists isn’t backed up by the evidence.

Someone vandalized over 200 of Portland’s 1,000 bikeshare bikes.

Great read. When a reader asks why bicyclists don’t have to carry insurance, an Oregon columnist responds “don’t be that guy.”

Alaskan fat bike riders are risking their lives by riding through railroad tunnels to get to a near-wilderness area that’s closed for the winter.

Prosecutors offer an undisclosed plea deal to a road raging Arizona driver who allegedly murdered a bike rider earlier this year; he faces up to 25 years if he’s convicted.

Someone walked out with $8,000 worth of bike clothes from a trio of Dallas bike shops.

A bike-riding Florida cop struggles to find answers in the wake of a recent tragedy, saying ultimately we must learn to care about others on the road, and encourage them to care about us.

 

International

Caught on video: A Canadian thief demonstrates just how fast a poorly secured bike can be stolen.

Four of London’s most dangerous intersections are scheduled to get bike and pedestrian friendly improvements. Which is exactly how Vision Zero is supposed to work.

The Guardian asks if London’s cycling czar is tough enough to take on critics and bike-haters. On the other hand, at least they have one, unlike some cities I could name.

Sometimes they do come home. Australian police recover an American man’s bicycle two years after it was stolen from a laundromat.

Designer and cyclist Paul Smith is creating cycling jerseys for a bike race to help raise funds to rebuild a Japanese town devastated by the 2011 tsunami.

Abandoned bikeshare bikes are crowding out humans in a Shenzhen, China park.

 

Finally…

No, popsicle bike is not a thing, but it should be. No, throwing your bike at an ex-friend who owes you money is not the correct way to use it.

And which of these things are you doing wrong in your cycling class?

That’s easy. Not riding a real bicycle outside, to start.

 

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