Tag Archive for Los Angeles

The late great Bill Walton was one of us, the predominantly puerile ebike peril, and 91-year old Whittier bike advocate dies

Just 217 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’ve inched up to 1,151 signatures, so don’t stop now! I’ll forward the petition to the mayor’s office later this week, so urge anyone who hasn’t already to sign it now! 

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Former UCLA and NBA great Bill Walton was one of us.

Walton, who reinvented himself as a top NBA broadcaster and analyst after injuries forced him to retire, was known as much for his love of bicycling and the Grateful Dead, as for his skill on the court.

He was often seen riding his custom, oversized Dead-decorated bike around the streets of San Diego, as well as riding to boost the former Tour of California.

In fact, he was honored with a life-sized statue depicting him with his bicycle at San Diego’s Mission Bay.

He died of cancer on Monday. He was 72.

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Today’s common theme is the peril posed by people — mostly young people — on electric bicycles.

Multiple reports accused teenagers on ebikes of “terrorizing” South Bay communities, as residents call for ticketing, or even jailing, kids who raise havoc by riding aggressively. Although once again, they appear to be riding electric motorbikes rather than bicycles. And if they really want to talk about terror, they should try getting threatened by the people in the big, dangerous machines. 

New Yorkers were happy to have “essential workers” on ebikes deliver their food during the pandemic, but now some think they’ve turned the city into a nightmare.

An Australian council posted “comically large” signs calling on teenaged ebike riders to know the law regarding ebikes, and use their bells to let other know they’re passing.

An Aussie paper writes that a neighborhood is being plagued by kids on fat ebikes with oversized tires. But somehow illustrates the story with a very non-electric fat-tired mountain bike. 

But a writer for a La Jolla paper argues that teenagers on ebikes may think they don’t have to obey stop signs because many drivers don’t, either.

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Sad news from Whittier, where longtime bicyclist and advocate Samanda Guyan has died.

Known as “Sam, Sam the bicycle ma’am,” Guyan co-founded the Whittier Wheelman with her husband Bob, and wrote a bicycling column for the Whittier Daily News.

She leaves behind four children, seven grandchildren, and many cousins, nieces and nephews

She was 91.

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Bike Talk talks with the author of the new book Killed By An Engineer.

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It’s now 159 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

While California’s seemingly moribund program stuck on endless delay, a study of an ebike rebate program in Saanich, British Columbia shows that up to 76% of recipients were first time ebike buyers, depending on the amount of the rebate. And after a full year, they were using their new ebikes three to four days a week, and driving an average of 30 miles a week less than they did before.

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

An off-duty Florida fire chief faces charges for intentionally targeting a man riding a bicycle, after yelling at him to get out of the road; the victim tried riding up onto to raised median to get away as the driver followed in his truck, before repeatedly pushing him and knocking away the phone he was trying to record the assault with.

A British Member of Parliament is accused of displaying “raw prejudice” against bicyclists after sending an angry email rant to a constituent who complained about his contradictory stance calling for a crackdown on bike riders, while ignoring the threat posed by motor vehicles.

A vigilante Aussie driver is charged with murder for deliberately running down a man riding a bicycle over a property dispute stemming from the day before.

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

The LAPD chased a murder suspect who attempted to flee by bicycle, following him on a slow and on a wobbly ride on the 5 Freeway, before eventually making the arrest by bumping him with a patrol car after he exited the freeway and knocking him off his bicycle. Never mind that hitting a suspect with a patrol car should be considered deadly use of force, just as if they had attempted to shoot him to keep him from escaping.

A road-raging young bike rider was accused of breaking an Edinburgh driver’s wing mirror at a red light, after the two exchanged words — and gestures — when the driver honked at the man for using his phone while riding with no hands.

Singapore police busted 25 bicyclists for violating the county’s strict limitation to groups of no more than five if riding single file, or 10 if riding two abreast.

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Local 

A West Hollywood resident posted video of a bike thief using an angle grinder to steal his bike Thursday morning on busy Santa Monica Boulevard.

Streetsblog looks at El Monte’s new Merced Ave Linear Park, the first in a series of multimodal paths connecting to the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area and Rio Hondo.

Seventy-two-year old Michael Keaton is one of us, too, riding to dinner in Santa Monica with his longtime girlfriend. Although someone should tell the Daily Mail that Santa Monica is a separate city, not a neighborhood in Los Angeles.

 

State

A pair of Carmel Valley students took top honors at the state and regional levels of a national STEM competition with their design for a bike helmet that would communicate with an ebike, preventing it from operating unless the helmet was safely in place.

Dozens of San Diego bicyclists rode on Saturday to honor San Diego native Corporal Gregory “Shortie” Millard, who died while deployed to Iraq in 2007

 

National

A car site calls protected intersections an ingenious solution that has the potential to save the lives of bicyclists and pedestrians, while a similar site says the intersections look awful, but actually make sense.

California ranks eighth on a list of American states bike riders want to move to, topped by Washington, Rhode Island, Vermont and Oregon.

A writer for Wired argues your tires are too skinny, suggesting that replacing them with the widest soft-sided tires that will fit your bike will improve your ride, without slowing you down.

A 23-year old Ukrainian refugee pled not guilty to reckless vehicular homicide in the death of 17-year old US National Team cyclist Magnus White in Boulder, Colorado last December, after she appeared to fall asleep behind the wheel.

No bias here. The New York Post’s anti-bike crank calls Philadelphia a model of urban order, without Gotham’s bike lanes creating traffic chaos.

In a heartbreaking story, a Georgia firefighter was on the phone with his wife when she was hit and killed while using the speakerphone on her bicycle; he knew it was her when the 911 call came into the nearby station where he works.

 

International

Bike Radar talks examines the best bike helmets for roadies.

GCN considers how bicycling to work can improve your mental health.

The annual World Naked Bike Ride bares all, or nearly all, in Toronto next week, though LA bike riders aren’t scheduled to strip until June 24th.

A pair of New York artists have installed a whimsical sculpture in Toronto’s David Pecaut Square; titled “He Was on a Ride to a Safer Place,” the interactive sculpture features an anthropomorphic rabbit and dog riding a bicycle built for four, captained by a rhinoceros, with an empty seat for a passenger int he back.

He gets it. When a 69-year old Montreal man won $7 million in the lottery last month, the first thing he wanted to do was by a new bike to replace the one he had stolen a few years earlier.

The London borough of Ealing is accused of “kowtowing to drivers” and failing to keep children safe by preventing drivers from parking in bike lanes, despite investing millions of pounds into new bike lanes and safe routes to school.

British actress Minnie Driver is also one of us, riding a bikeshare bike after shopping in Notting Hill.

Demonstrating the same sense of entitlement they often accuse us of, London drivers threaten to go to court to force the city to reopen a roadway to an exclusive millionaires playground, after it was closed to cars to improve safety for people on bicycles. Although chances are the real reason has a lot more to do with keeping people out of the rich people’s neighborhood than it does with bike safety. 

A former avid London bicyclist ended up giving his away after moving to Birmingham for college, after feeling unsafe and frustrated riding on the city’s streets.

An English man whose wife was killed by a reckless bike-riding teenager insists he’s not giving up on a law that could jail bike riders who kill pedestrians for years, if not life.

A British man will spend a well-deserved 12 years behind bars for the drunken hit-and-run that killed a 44-year old man and a 16-year old boy as they rode their bikes, and will be banned from driving for another 13 years; he got out of his car to look at the victims before driving off and crashing into another car, injuring a woman and her children.

A new book says the UK’s 13,000-mile National Cycling Network is at constant risk of failing into disrepair.

Ferrari F1 driver Charles Leclerc is one of us, too, as he rode his bike to his nearby home after winning the famed Monaco Grand Prix, before partying all night with the principality’s royal family.

National Geographic provides a practical guide to riding the Green Routes of Slovenia.

 

Competitive Cycling

Two-time Tour de France champ Tadej Pogačar waltzed to victory in the Giro by the biggest margin in six decades, winning by 9 minutes, 56 seconds over runner-up Daniel Martinez, while Geraint Thomas finished third at 10:24 behind.

Belgian star Wout van Aert bounced back from a devastating high-speed crash in March’s Dwars door Vlaanderen with a podium finish in the Tour of Norway, positioning him to return to the Tour de France.

A 23-year old neurodivergent woman took park in a three-day British stage race, competing for her semi-professional team despite having dyslexia, dyspraxia and autism.

A Chicago woman set out on Sunday in an attempt to set a new Guinness World Record for the fastest circumnavigation of the globe by bicycle.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you get a great deal on a cruiser bike, and the helpful guy who lugs it up the stairs wouldn’t be caught dead on it. Your new rear-view app could rely on the same advanced tech that creates people with three hands and Black Nazi soldiers.

And you haven’t ridden a bike until you’ve ridden at the speed of light.

No, really.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Ebikes blamed for actress injured in e-motorbike crash, and bill banning sharrows on high-speed roads gets CA Senate nod

Just 221 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’ve inched up to 1,147 signatures, so don’t stop now! I plan to forward the petition to the mayor’s office next week, so urge anyone who hasn’t already to sign it now! 

Photo from Nina Dobrev’s Instagram account

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When is an ebike not an ebike?

Vampire Diaries actress Nina Dobrev posted before and after photos showing her on an electric off-road motorcycle, and in a hospital bed wearing neck and knee braces, saying it’s going to be a long road to recovery.

The problem comes, like Simon Cowell before her, in how the media has reported it.

News stories have variously described the motorbike she was riding as an ebike, an electric dirt bike and an electric motorcycle. Or sometimes more than one.

But only the last two are accurate.

By conflating all two-wheeled electric bikes as ebikes, they add to the misperception that ebikes are dangerous, as Malcomb Watson points out below.

Part of the problem comes from the ebike classifications that began in California, and have been adopted by states across the US.

But there’s a big difference between a ped-assist ebike with a top speed of 20 mph, and a throttle-controlled moped that can do 30 mph.

Let alone a motor scooter or electric motorcycle.

Yet to most of the media — and much of the public — they’re all ebikes. So if you wonder what the ebike panic is all about, that’s a good place to start.

Chart by Orange County Bicycle Coalition

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A bike bill moving on to the state Assembly would ban sharrows from streets with speeds over 30 mph.

Now we just have to ban them from all the other streets, too.

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Gravel Bike California offers a beginners guide on where to start.

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It’s now 155 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

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

A Houston woman was the victim of a road-raging terrorist, who allegedly tossed roofing nails onto the side of the road following a back-and-forth encounter with a group of bicyclists; she suffered a broken collar bone, pelvic bone injuries and a concussion after hitting the nails on her bike while riding at around 25 mph. A crowdfunding page to help pay her medical expenses has raised over $11,000 of the $15,000 goal.

In yet another example of cops without a clue when it comes to bike law, a Georgia man was detained for riding his ebike in the street after dark, with the cops apparently unaware what an ebike is, and why he couldn’t just ride it on the sidewalk, where it’s prohibited.

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

A 36-year old San Francisco man is under arrest after allegedly running a red light on his bicycle and slamming into a 65-year old woman, then fleeing the scene and leaving the victim with life-threatening injuries. Yet another reminder that you’re required to stick around after hitting someone with your bike, just like the people in the big, dangerous machines. Even if they too often don’t. 

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Local 

Enjoy a ride under the full moon with tonight’s Moonlight Mash in Long Beach.

 

State

Caltrans officially opened a new bike underpass beneath the 5 Freeway in San Diego’s Carmel Valley, providing a new connection to the State Route 56 Bike Path, North Coast Bike Trail and Coastal Rail Trail.

This is who we share the road with. A Subaru driver apparently tried to turn a Goleta 7-11 into a drive-thru, plowing through the front windows to completely embed his Outback in the convenience store. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up. 

Speaking of Goleta, a recent series of bicycle and pedestrian safety stings operations resulted in 53 citations, but the story doesn’t break down how many drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians got them. Thanks again to Megan Lynch. 

The Bay Area’s Metropolitan Transportation Commission moved a step closer to ripping out the bike lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, and turning the bridge over to the people in motor vehicles, who want the whole damn thing for themselves.

Streetsblog asks how many San Francisco bike riders have to get doored before the city stops installing painted bike lanes.

 

National

Bike Index has launched a new app to simplify registering your bikes, for free, from anywhere in the world.

After 412 days and 18,000 miles, Spencer McCullough has finished riding to all 51 National Parks in the lower 48 states.

Gear Junkie picks 13 of the year’s best bike helmets for roadies.

Bicycling looks back at the horrific coal rolling case that nearly killed six bicyclists in a rural community outside of Houston. Unfortunately, this one doesn’t seem to be available anywhere else, so you’re on your own if the magazine blocks you. 

Indianapolis is now the first American city to offer free bikeshare to all its residents, with a fleet of 325 new ebikes. Which could be the best way to keep people from stealing them, since they can just go out and use another one.

Tennessee invited bike riders to “explore 52 stunning, epic landscapes” on the state’s 52 curated bike routes, traversing 1,739 miles across 53 counties, complete with a nifty pedaling logo on their website.

A writer for the Harvard student paper says the contentious new bike lanes currently being built on the streets of Cambridge, Massachusetts represent a bitter division in the city’s politics, leaving may residents at a loss for how it can be bridged.

New York’s Indian Consulate noted the “disturbing trend” of Indian citizens getting killed in the US, after an Indian student at SUNY university was killed in a collision while riding a bike on Wednesday; needless to say, the driver wasn’t charged.

 

International

Momentum offers ten must-try North American summer bike touring routes. The magazine also offers a guide to the World Naked Bike Ride, spreading its cheeks in over 70 cities across 20 countries this year; Los Angeles is set to bare it all on June 24th. Or most of it, anyway.

Road.cc offers tips on how to diagnose and deal with saddle pain, and why your bike seat may not be the problem.

A Cuban radio station recounts the many benefits of bicycling, in advance of next month’s UN World Bicycle Day.

Parents in the London borough of Ealing won’t let their kids ride bikes on the street, despite millions spent on new bicycling infrastructure, because illegal parking, congested roads and a lack of traffic enforcement have made many bike lanes virtually useless.

Londoners will get a new bike and pedestrian bridge connecting the boroughs of Tower Hamlets and Newham over the River Lea.

This is who we share the road with, part two. After finishing a 40 month sentence for killing a 15-year old bike rider in a 2021 hit-and-run, a British man led the cops on a chase at speeds up to 100 mph, despite a three year driving ban that began the day he got out.

Cycling Weekly considers why speed limits don’t apply to Brits on bicycles, and whether that really means you can ride as fast as you want in the UK.

A new Danish study shows people who bike for transportation seldom choose the shortest route, but rather one that feels the shortest, with fewer interruptions.

The Global Times examines the historic “cycling craze” that’s sweeping Chinese cities — and inspiring demand for luxury bikewear.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former pro cyclist Lizzy Banks describes how a false positive on a drug test derailed her racing career, and took a toll on her “mental health, finances, future earnings as a pro, and her love and faith in the sport,” despite being cleared of any wrong doing. Read it on AOL if Bicycling blocks you.

Bicycling Australia says if there’s anyone who can win the rare Giro – Tour de France double in the same year, it’s Tadej Pogačar, who has the first part pretty much wrapped up.

Former Unbound gravel race champ Ivar Slik suffered a severe concussion, broken nose and cuts and bruises when he somehow crashed into a car while on an Arkansas training ride with a group of his fellow Dutch cyclists.

Several cyclists collided on the 4th stage of the Tour of Albania; no word on any possible injuries. Bonus points if you even knew there is a Tour of Albania, now in its 81st year. 

 

Finally…

Busted for looking like a wanted man’s doppelgänger. Why go to court, when you can battle it out with the cops on Facebook?

And when you’re carrying meth and fentanyl on your bike, stop for the damn stop signs, already — and put a taillight on it.

The bike, that is. Not the drugs.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Closing a non-existent bike lane, Newsom guts climate-friendly Active Transportation funds, and draconian Brit bike law on hold

Just 222 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’ve made it up to 1,145 signatures, so don’t stop now! I plan to forward the petition to the mayor’s office next week, so urge anyone who hasn’t already to sign it now! 

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Today’s photo comes from La Cienega Blvd across from the Beverly Center yesterday afternoon, when the non-existent bike lane was somehow closed for construction work.

Maybe they’re just getting ready in case there ever is one.

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Politico looks at Governor Newsom’s ill-advised attempt to cut $600 million from the state’s climate-change fighting Active Transportation Program — $200 million a year for three years — rather than take the money from the state’s massive $5.2 billion highway maintenance fund.

According to the story,

“Continuing to divert state highway account funds could negatively impact the key work that Caltrans does to maintain the state highway system,” budget analyst Benjamin Pollack told lawmakers last week.

Marty Greenstein, a spokesperson for the California State Transportation Agency, said in an email that $650 million has already been pulled from the highway account to support various programs, and more shifts could hurt clean transportation efforts, “including complete streets, climate adaptation and other multimodal projects.”

Which seems strange, since the ATP funds active transportation programs like — wait for it — complete streets, climate adaption and other multimodal projects.

And maybe I’m unclear on the concept, but it seems like maintenance funds are more likely to be used to patch potholes and restripe highways than re-engineer roadways to make them more welcoming to people who aren’t safely encased in motor vehicles.

Meanwhile, Calbike says the state has a climate deficit to go along with its massive financial one.

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It turns out the UK’s draconian new law criminalizing deadly bike riders was just political vaporware.

The legislation, which would have created a crime of causing death by dangerous, careless or inconsiderate cycling with a penalty of up to 14 years behind bars, was put on hold Wednesday when the country’s Prime Minister called for new elections in July.

Hopefully by then, the demonization of bike riders by the British press will have subsided, and cooler heads will toss the bill into the dustbin of history, where it belongs.

Meanwhile, The London Telegraph buried a correction to its bizarre claim that Strava data showed bicyclists riding through the streets of London at an impossible 52 mph by placing it at the end of the online version of the story, nearly a week after blaring the claim in huge type above the masthead on the paper’s front page.

And a writer for The Telegraph says the solution to dangerous bicyclists is the utterly impractical idea of requiring bike riders to carry numbered license plates, which would have to be large enough to read at a distance, making them too big for a big.

Unless they want to make us wear them on our backs, like a bicycling scarlet letter shaming us before all those good, honest and law-abiding people in cars.

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Beverly Hills will rip out a short protected bike lane along Roxbury Park to restore the angled parking spaces that were removed for the bike lane, citing the bike lane’s limited use, with an average of just 35 riders using it each day.

Because evidently, bike riders are somehow supposed to go out of their way to ride on dangerous high-speed streets just to get to a lousy 900-foot bike lane completely disconnected from any other bike infrastructure.

Someone needs to tell officials in the former Biking Black Hole that even the best bike lanes are worthless unless and until they’re integrated into an actual bike network, with safe routes to get to and from them.

And that goes for 85 of the other 87 cities in LA County, with the limited exceptions of Long Beach and Santa Monica.

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Assuming this passes the Assembly — and gets the governor’s signature, which is not guaranteed — Caltrans will be required to implement complete streets measures whenever they do major work on state-owned roadways.

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GCN considers why bicyclists really should care about average speeds.

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It’s now 154 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

While we continue to wait for California’s new moribund ebike voucher program to finally get off the ground — if it ever does — Contra Costa County will provide up to $300 in cash rebates for any ebike purchased within the last six months.

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

No bias here. A San Diego writer says the ghost bike installed for 16-year old fallen bicyclist Brodee Champlain Kingman says everything you need to know about ebikes, including throttle-controlled Class 3 ebikes capable of up to 28 mph. Except, to the best of my knowledge, no one has ever said what kind of ebike Kingman was riding, and he was hit by a driver while apparently making a legal lane change, and doing nothing else wrong.

No surprise here, as New Jersey bike riders aren’t crazy about plans to require even low-speed ebikes and electric scooters to be registered and insured. Which is putting it mildly.

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Local 

Metro Bike is teaming with the California African American Museum to host a three-mile community ride this Saturday celebrating the opening of the Paula Wilson: Toward the Sky’s Back Door exhibit.

“Dozens and dozens” of angry West Hollywood residents turned out to complain that no one told them parking spaces would be removed to make room for bike lanes on Gardner, Willoughby and Vista aves; one person called for sharrows, instead, which studies have been shown to be worse than nothing.

 

State

The state Senate has passed SB 961 and is sending it on to the Assembly; the watered down bill would just require new cars to give an audible warning when they exceed the posted speed limit, rather than require governors to prevent drivers from speeding more than 10 mph over the limit.

Streetsblog’s Melanie Curry talks with Tom Butler about his podcast “Cycling Over Sixty,” which is exactly what it sounds like.

Sad news from Grover Beach, where a 74-year old man faces a misdemeanor charge when a woman died 12 days after she was struck by the driver while riding her bike; prosecutors did the defense lawyer’s work for them, blaming glare from the sun and the time of day for contributing to the crash.

A new minor league baseball team in bike-friendly Davis is named the Yolo High Wheelers, which isn’t an acronym for You Only Live Once, but named for its home in Yolo County, along with a term for Penny Farthings.

 

National

Bicycling answers 15 key beginner biking questions. Which you can read for free on AOL, even though the story says it’s for Bicycling members only.

A woman recounts her epic 3,500-mile bike ride from Alaska to California. Once again, read it on AOL if Bicycling blocks you. 

The annual CABDA West bike show will move to Las Vegas next year.

An Arizona man faces up to 33 years behind bars for an allegedly stoned hit-and-run, even though his bike-riding victim only suffered a little road rash on elbows; the 31-year old driver was booked on charges of hit and run, aggravated assault, aggravated DUI, drug DUI, driving with a revoked license and injuring someone in a crash. Even I think that’s just a tad extreme, given the limited extent of the victim’s injuries.

Terrible story from South Dakota, where a nine-year old boy was killed by a pack of feral dogs as he was riding his bike on the Sioux Nation.

A new documentary follows a Black father and son as they take a challenging ride from St. Louis to Chicago, while describing the father’s journey to a healthier lifestyle.

Life is cheap in Chicago, where a speeding driver walked with a lousy $500 fine for failing to reduce his speed before killing a woman riding a bicycle two years ago. Gentle wrist caresses like this are exactly why people keep dying on our streets.

An Indianapolis father and his young son will continue their annual tradition of biking 16 miles to see the Indianapolis 500.

Tribal officials announced the twelve bicyclists from the Cherokee Nation who will participate in June’s Remember the Removal Bike Ride, retracing the 950-mile route of the tragic forced march that removed their ancestors from their tribal homelands.

More proof that bikes mean business, helping revitalize a small Vermont town even before a new bike path intended to connect it to a larger network, as residents work on improving the downtown area to attract new bike tourists.

A Massachusetts talk radio station bizarrely conflates bicycle-pedestrian crashes with deaths and injuries to vulnerable road users resulting from motor vehicle crashes, with one single paragraph inserted into the story about bicyclists crashing into pedestrians, and no stats or other evidence to show bike-ped crashes are actually a problem.

 

International

Momentum shares the six best wine regions in North America for a summer bicycling getaway. Because biking to the wineries is a much better idea than drunkenly driving from one to another.

St. John’s, Moncton, Charlottetown, Montreal, Ottawa and Edmonton top the list of the most dangerous Canadian cities to ride a bike in. Meanwhile, the most dangerous citiy in the US to ride a bike in is all of them.

An 81-year old British Columbia woman draws a distinction between throttle-controlled ebikes and the ped-assist kind she rides, saying throttled ebikes are really motorbikes that don’t belong on trails or in bike lanes.

A new London study shows that pedestrians are twice as likely to get hit by quiet operating electric and hybrid cars, compared to noisier gas-powered vehicles.

Britain’s pandemic bike boom appears to be going bust, as the latest stats show driving rates climbed 3% while traffic miles by buses, coaches and bicycles declined, with bicycling rates dropping a drastic 7.3%.

 

Competitive Cycling

A 53-year old Italian cyclist faces criminal charges after he was caught motor doping in the 40th annual Routes de l’Oise French amateur stage race, and carried the race director on the hood of his car for more than the length of a football field while he attempted to flee afterwards.

 

Finally…

That feeling when your new $230 Chinese ebike is a literal road hazard. Or when Ed Sheeran puts on an impromptu acappela concert while cruising on a bikeshare bike.

And when is a bike lane not a bike lane? When it’s a right turn lane — or a parking lot.

Or doesn’t exist, for that matter.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

No surprise as LA fails first HLA test, and CTC praises Active Transportation Program targeted for Newsom budget cuts

Just 223 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’ve made it up to 1,143 signatures, so don’t stop now! I plan to forward the petition to the mayor’s office next week, so urge anyone who hasn’t already signed it to sign now! 

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Is anyone really surprised Los Angeles isn’t living up to Measure HLA yet?

Or at all?

After a month of foot dragging, putting the city’s street resurfacing program on hold, and near-total silence on the subject from city leaders, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton reports that the city is has just finished work repaving Coronado Street in Silver Lake.

And needless to say, failed to follow through with the bike lanes mandated by the city’s mobility plan under HLA.

Which means, as I understand it, anyone can now file suit to force them to comply.

You know, in case you’re in the mood.

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The California Transportation Commission sang the praises of the state’s Active Transportation Program, calling it a “key part of California’s climate efforts,” even as Governor Newsom calls for drastic budget cuts.

And even though he could easily maintain funding at current levels, or let alone increase it, just by making modest cuts to the state’s massive $19 billion — yes, with a b — highway fund.

Once again demonstrating that Newsom’s oft-spoken commitment to fighting climate change is thinner than the tread on a worn out tire.

Just like his appearance at a fancy political dinner after calling for Californians to quarantine during the early days of the pandemic, Newsom’s budget cuts show an extreme level of auto-centric hypocrisy.

In every sense.

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Video of P Diddy — aka Sean Combs — beating his girlfriend in a hotel hallway was a bridge too far for Peloton, which cut ties with the rapper and producer.

But evidently, they were just fine with all the other accusations of sexual and physical violence, and possible sex trafficking, that weren’t caught on video.

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This is your chance to see protected bike lanes on PCH in Long Beach.

Now we just need the do the other 650 or so miles.

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The North Westwood Neighborhood Council — you know, the one that’s not dominated by Westwood NIMBYs — is holding a virtual meeting of their Transportation and Safety Committee this evening.

Just in case you care about bike and pedestrian safety in and around Westwood Village, and getting the long-delayed bike lanes on Westwood Blvd.

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There may be hope for Vision Zero yet. Even if LA never does get its shit together.

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Kriss Kyle and Danny Macaskill go head-to-head in a game of B.I.K.E.

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It’s now 153 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

No bias here. The San Diego Reader misses the point entirely, complaining that local drivers are intimidated by Critical Mass splinter groups tying up traffic while participating in ride outs. Never mind that Critical Mass is a protest against the dominance and dangers of our current automotive hegemony.

A Sacramento woman is still waiting for justice, nine months after a road-raging driver nearly killed her by intentionally ramming her bike as she was riding with a group; the 30-year old driver was arrested, but later release pending a trial date.

………

Local 

This is who we share the road with. A Valencia man was busted for DUI for the second time in just three weeks, after stalling his car in the traffic lanes of the 5 Freeway; three weeks ago, he smashed the other driver’s windshield following a crash in Stevenson Ranch.

 

State

No, you can’t legally have earbuds or headphones covering both ears when you drive or ride a bike in California.

Community members call for change after a woman was killed riding her bike in Cathedral City earlier this month; she was the 48th person killed riding a bicycle in the Coachella Valley in the past 20 years.

This is who we share the road with, part two. A 17-year old girl was busted for suspicion of DUI and hit-and-run after driving on the wrong side of the road and crashing into a Newbury Park home, then walking away; her 17-year old passenger was arrested on suspicion of public intoxication and resisting or delaying an investigation.

Huh? A Bay Area website considers the past, present and future of bicycling, saying it transformed from a “niche hobby” to one of the city’s major infrastructure efforts. Something tells me the people who’ve been biking up there for a decades might disagree with that ridiculous description.

 

National

Cycling Weekly lets the air out of the solid bike tire dream.

People For Bikes shares their federal trade policy objectives for the coming year.

A new study from the National Institutes of Health shows people who ride bikes regularly are significantly less likely to suffer from knee pain and osteoarthritis by age 65, compared to people who don’t bike. And may even live longer.

Seattle just got it’s first Dutch-style protected intersection. Which is still one more than Los Angeles has.

Denver’s free bicycle registry program, developed in conjunction with 529 Garage, has helped cut bike thefts in the city by 30%. It’s not officially a citywide program, but you can register your bike for free with Bike Index right here. 

All you have to do to get free bike repair — or a free bike — is move to Missoula, Montana.

Austin, Texas installed a lane reduction and separated bike lanes — aka a road diet — on a street plagued by speeding drivers, and saw a 64.2% drop in drivers going over 40 mph, with zero traffic deaths or serious injuries.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole 20 bike worth ten grand from an Austin nonprofit that gives free fixies to people in need.

If you build it, they will come. After going on a bike lane building binge, bicycling is growing faster in Chicago than any other city in the US, with a 119% increase in just four years. That compares favorably with Los Angeles, which didn’t. 

The US Justice Department is threatening to sue the NYPD if their cops don’t stop parking on the damn sidewalks. Maybe they could stop ’em from parking in bike lanes, too. 

A longtime international restauranteur is now selling tacos from his bicycle, after losing his popular restaurant New York in a divorce.

Speaking of a special place in hell, there’s one waiting for whoever stole an adaptive adult tricycle from an autistic Philadelphia teenager, who used it to feel more connected o the community.

 

International

Road.cc says the current slashing of bicycle prices isn’t the sign of a downturn, but just a return to normal market conditions.

Mountain biking in the City of Quebec.

The mayor of Montreal’s Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie borough has taken a page from the Paris mayor’s book, and charging higher parking fees for large trucks and SUVs.

A Scottish writer says if thoughtless delivery bike riders knew they’re as accountable as car drivers are for reckless behavior, “they might screw the nut.” Which evidently isn’t a local phrase for having sex with Mr. Peanut. And not that anyone actually holds drivers accountable, anyway. 

Apparently, British cops are now turning to Q for their traffic control devices, developing an electromagnetic pulse weapon to instantly disable ebikes and e-scooters James Bond would be proud of. Maybe they could try it on e-cars, too.

The Guardian’s Peter Walker argues that the UK’s new law against dangerous bicycling will accomplish pretty much nothing, while GCN wants to know why bike riding is so politicized right now. Which is a damn good question.

The head of a British bike company says if aviation or railroads had the safety record roads do, “planes would be grounded and trains would be stopped.

 

Competitive Cycling

Two-time Tour de France champ Tadej Pogačar continued to ride circles around the peloton by winning his fifth stage of the Giro on Tuesday, extending his lead to a whopping 7 minutes and 18 seconds; the stage was delayed for three hours and significantly shortened after riders revolted over being forced to ride through a snow storm.

Pogačar briefly lost his KOM on the Passo di Foscagno on Sunday’s stage of the Giro, after someone flagged him on Strava despite devastated the field.

 

Finally…

Bicycling is a gateway drug that leads to spandex and a latte addiction. That feeling when your new bike path is less than a block long, ending in a brick wall, and with a staircase in the middle.

And that feeling when a petition calling for banishing bike riders draws a whole four signatures.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Many drivers blind to how badly drivers drive, British press demonizes bike riders, and building greater inclusion in bicycling

Just 225 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’ve made it up to 1,135 signatures, so don’t stop now! I’ll be forwarding the petition to the mayor’s office this week, so urge anyone who hasn’t already signed the petition to sign it now! 

………

No bias here.

A British Columbia columnist wants you to imagine what would happen if drivers behaved like some bicyclists, saying there’s no gain if aggressive riding keeps others off the supposedly all-ages-and-abilities trails and lanes.

Passing at high speed without signalling verbally or with a bell. Passing at high speed without signalling on a blind curve. Passing someone else who’s passing at high speed on a blind curve. Passing within a hair’s breadth of a pedestrian at 40 km/h with no warning. Plunging through a pack of pedestrians, dogs and small children on the Selkirk Trestle at full speed.

Of course, vehicle drivers don’t typically behave this way because we have a robust system of vehicle licensing to ensure they know the rules of the road, and a somewhat less robust system of enforcement (less all the time, given the number of red-light runners observed of late.)

Yes, there is a sizable segment of bicyclists who ride in an aggressive manner, with little or no regard for how that affects others. Or how that makes people see us.

Yet it’s remarkable that so many people are blind to how motorists actually behave, as if bicyclists are the only ones who do dangerous and aggressive things out there — as if the people on two wheels somehow posed a greater risk to others than the ones in the big, dangerous machines.

Yes, scofflaw bike riders can be extremely annoying. I’ve been tempted more than once to clock some asshole who zoomed by on a narrow sidewalk, nearly hitting my wife or I, let alone our dog.

But the fact remains that even the worst bike riders pose the greatest risk to themselves, while aggressive drivers are a risk to everyone else on — or off — the roadway.

The number of people killed in collisions with bicyclists in the US each year can usually be counted on one hand, while you’d need more than 4,000 hands to count the people killed with motor vehicles, using every finger and thumb.

Especially that one.

The simple fact is, human nature dictates that some people will always be jackasses, regardless of how they choose to travel.

The only difference is which ones actually pose the real peril.

………

The demonization of bike riders by the British press in the wake of an 82-year old woman killed in a collision with a speeding bicyclist in London’s Regent Park is still going on.

A London tabloid posted photographs of “reckless” cyclists still flouting the rules, just days after leaders of the UK’S Conservative Party proposed strict new rules, including 14-years behind bars for bike riders who kill — although I wouldn’t exactly call riding while holding a cellphone in your hand reckless.

The husband of a woman killed by a bicyclist seven years ago applauded the new restrictions, while suggesting he had to overcome a super-secret bike cabal “blob” somehow entrenched within the British government. Although no one ever seems to question whether the pedestrian may have been at fault, automatically blaming the person on the bike.

And a writer for The Spectator says a crackdown on bad bicyclists can’t come soon enough, as she dreams of the day when police can immobilize ebikes and electric scooters by zapping them with pulses fired from special backpack under development from a government defense lab.

On the other hand, British bike hero Chris Boardman decried as hate speech a recent article disparaging bicyclists, while it turns out that the article claiming a bike rider was clocked doing 52 mph in a 20 mile zone was in fact co-written by a BBC fact-checker, who failed to fact-check the physically impossible report.

Cycling Weekly says parity in punishment is no problem, but “death trap” journalism that capitalizes on misinformation is unforgivable, because we can’t pretend that creating more laws for cyclists will result in equality on the roads.

And London bicyclists say Members of Parliament are spinning out of control as they peddle fears of the dangers posed by scofflaw bicyclists.

Maybe someone should explain the concept of collective guilt to the members of the press so intent on painting bike riders as the bad guys.

Because there’s no surer sign of bias than pretending the actions of some members of a group should somehow condemn the others.

………

Today’s other common thread reflects the need for inclusion in the bicycling community.

The new book Black Cyclists: The Race for Inclusion examines the mostly unknown history of Black cyclists, from Major Taylor to today’s riders.

Forbes talks with the founder of the Jafe Cycling Foundation, a group dedicated to exposing middle and high school students to the sport of cycling in order to increase Black ridership, at a time when Black cyclists make up less than 1% of the pro peloton.

Bike Radar says derogatory comments and actions — intentional and otherwise — reflecting the dominance of straight males are still prevalent on the trails, within the bike industry and in the race scene, fostering an environment that discourages many women from riding.

Speaking of which, the WeHo Bicycle Coalition is hosting a group ride next month to kick off Pride Month, riding from Hollywood and Highland to the West Hollywood Pride Fest.

………

It’s not every day Saturday Night Live satirizes bike riders. Mostly because it only airs on Saturdays.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

………

It’s now 153 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

Bike lanes have become a division issue in the mayoral election in Mississauga, Ontario, as a local group is offering to support any candidate that will undo a plan for protected bike lanes passed by the city council last year.

The Magistrates Courthouse in Wimbledon, England — home to the famous tennis tournament — says don’t even think about bringing your bike onto the premises, even though they have plenty of room for parking cars.

Bicyclists slammed a proposed city ordinance in Zaragoza, Spain, which would impose a mandatory insurance requirement for everyone on a bicycle — including children — while urging motorists to dangerously overtake bike riders on the roads.

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

Police in New York are looking for a sidewalk-raging teenaged bike rider, who attacked and pummeled two young Jewish kids for blocking his way as he rode on the sidewalk; the cops are investigating the assault as a hate crime.

………

Local 

The Signal offers photos from Saturday’s Hit the Trail self-guided community bike ride in Santa Clarita, even though the “community” all rode individually.

 

State

Grab your mountain bike and head to Orange County’s Silverado Canyon, where the sweeping canyons and lush wildflowers of the Red Rock Wilderness has just been opened to the public.

This is who we share the road with. A former Riverside craft brewer was sentenced to 20 years behind bars after accepting a plea deal for the drunken, high-speed hit-and-run that killed another motorist in Ontario, after prosecutors dropped a 2nd degree murder charge; Ryan Cavender Wicks earned the heavy sentence because of a previous DUI conviction.

A writer for the Fresno Bee says recent trip by city leaders to sister city Münster, Germany could offer lessons for making Fresno a safer place to ride a bike.

San Francisco bicyclists aren’t the only ones who want to feel safer on the popular route known as The Wiggle, as seniors who live along the route also risk getting hit by impatient drivers.

Frequent contributor Megan Lynch offers a Mastodon thread about her lengthy and ongoing fight for accessible bike racks at UC Davis, as campus officials can’t seem to grasp that equal accessibility is required under the Americans With Disabilities Act.

 

National

Bike shops nationwide are struggling in the face of excess inventory, as demand plummeted after manufacturers overbuilt, and bike shops overstocked, while overcompensating for the bike shortages of the pandemic.

Architecture Daily examines bike-riding urbanism pioneer Jane Jacobs, at a time when American car culture “has produced and normalized new forms of sociopathy,” and carmakers have adopted an angry-looking, “murdered-out” esthetic.

Another person riding a bicycle has been killed in police chase, when a domestic violence suspect in Phoenix fled from the cops and slammed into the bike rider as he tried to make his escape.

Here’s one for your beer bucket list, with a 25-mile bike tour of six breweries in and around Golden, Colorado, ranging from local craft brewers to the massive Coors complex.

 

International

Yes, a Mexican transit company really did put their drivers on stationary bikes to get buzzed by buses so they’d know how it feels to people on bicycles.

A British Columbia lawyer says cost savings for the province’s no-fault insurance program was made on the backs of victims like him, accusing it of shortchanging him after a bicycling crash left him a paraplegic. Thanks again to Megan Lynch. 

London plans to install planter boxes and rumble strips along a popular Thames River multi-use path to slow speeding bike riders, while stressing that pedestrians should be given priority.

I want to be like her when I grow up. An 82-year old London woman rode through fog and hail to conquer the legendary Mount Ventoux, raising the equivalent of nearly $24,000 for the children of Gaza, and counting.

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list — okay, maybe just mine — with a list of the most beautiful bike routes in Ireland.

Momentum recommends Europe’s best spring bicycling destinations for nature lovers.

French bikemaker and sports retail giant Decathlon urged politicians to implement the European Union’s Cycling Declaration ahead of the European Parliament elections to make it easier for people to bike, while focusing on infrastructure and bike theft, and calling for more sustainable bicycle manufacturing.

A Chinese man is current riding through Africa on a bike tour that has led him through a dozen countries so far, despite loosing an arm and a leg when he was electrocuted as a teenager.

Seven-thousand people turned out in Seoul, South Korea for the 16th Seoul Bike Festival on Sunday, following a 13-mile course along the banks of the Han River.

Japanese bike riders are almost universally ignoring the country’s new mandatory helmet law, with just ten percent of bicyclists nationwide donning skid lids; meanwhile, new laws will allow police to crackdown on scofflaw bicyclists.

 

Competitive Cycling

Kristen Faulkner and Sean Quinn are your new women’s and mens US National Road Cycling champs.

Tadej Pogačar entered the final rest day of the Giro by demolishing the field in yet another solo breakaway, extending his lead to a virtually insurmountable six minutes and 41 seconds.

At this point, the only thing that may derail Pogačar in the Giro is the virus that’s sweeping the peloton, with 21 riders abandoning so far.

A writer for Velo says Pogačar is a “risk-taker, an entertainer, a high-wire act” who’s the current King of the Hill, but won’t be forever.

Um, no. Cycling Weekly’s Dr. Hutch ponders the point where a long solo break ceases to be polite, and becomes a case of showboating.

 

Finally…

Tackle the local time trial with a ‘bent. That feeling when someone thinks $1599 is “pricey” for an ebike. Your next ebike could be a golden Porsche.

And who needs lights when your whole bike glows in the dark?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

SaMo approves bicycle anti-harassment ordinance, Brit press demonizes bicyclists, and Wilmington CicLAmini Sunday

Just 228 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’ve made it up to 1,134 signatures, so don’t stop now! Urge everyone you know to sign the petition, until she agrees to meet with us! 

………

It took awhile, but LA’s bicyclist anti-harassment ordinance is finally starting to spread elsewhere in Los Angeles County.

The Santa Monica City Council unanimously approved an ordinance prohibiting harassment of bicyclists, while providing a private right of action for violations in civil court.

They also clarified that the law applies to both human-powered and ped-assist ebikes — but evidently, not throttle-controlled ebikes.

According to Santa Monica City Attorney Doug Sloan,

“Defining activities would prohibit physically assaulting or attempting to physically assault bicyclists because of their status of a bicyclist, threatening to physically injure a cyclist, threatening to physically injure, including by road, cyclists because of being a cyclist. intentionally distracting or attempting to distract a cyclist, intentionally forcing or attempting to enforce a bicyclist off the street or bike lane,” Sloan said.

“It’s important to note that these are purely civil remedies,” he said before clarifying that this does not require city resources to enforce this — it is not criminal. So an aggrieved individual can bring a civil action against the perpetrator. It can include if they’re liable for damages for three times heir actual damage for each violation or $1,000, whichever is greater. Moreover, they can recover attorney fees and potentially punitive damages.

“It expressly says it does not constitute a misdemeanor or infraction. And that’s essentially it,” he said.

That last part is important, because it means a cop doesn’t need to witness the violation, or ticket the driver or file charges.

However, the same problems that have limited the Los Angeles ordinance would likely limit this one, as well.

Unless you record the violation on a bike cam or cellphone, it’s difficult to gather witnesses or other evidence to offer proof of what happened.

And even with the provision for legal fees, it’s hard to find a lawyer who will take a case without the possibility of substantial damages, because the amount of work required doesn’t usually make it worth their time.

Still, it’s a move towards holding dangerous, aggressive and road-raging drivers accountable.

Let’s just hope it spreads to the other 86 cities in LA County.

………

No bias here.

The British press continued its demonization of “killer bicyclists” in the wake of a new law imposing a sentence of up to 14 years for killing someone by dangerous, careless or inconsiderate bicycling.

Which is seven years more than motorists face for a similar crime.

The London Telegraph lifted their paywall to breathlessly share a story about “reckless” bicyclists chasing Strava coms — including one person reportedly riding 52 mph in a 20 mph zone, which would be a world record speed.

A columnist for Express says it’s about time London’s “Lycra-clad maniacs” were forced to abide by the rules of the road, including such “trivialities” as traffic lights and crosswalks. Never mind that British bike riders are already subject to most of the same rules drivers are.

However, former Olympic gold medalist, Hour Record holder, and current National Active Travel Commissioner Chris Boardman puts it in perspective.

………

Don’t miss Sunday’s CicLAmini open streets event in Wilmington this Sunday. The weather should be cool, dry and partly cloudy, so it should be comfortable whether you’re riding, skating or walking.

https://twitter.com/CaltransDist7/status/1791227045793481121

………

GCN considers whether Classified’s new Powershift hub could spell the end of front derailleurs, after it was used by the Ineos Grenadiers cycling team during the Giro’s individual time trial.

………

It’s now 149 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

Once again, a British bike rider has been pushed off his bike by some jackass in a passing car when the passenger in a BMW leaned out the window and knocked a man in his 40s off his bicycle, and suffered a broken shoulder, cuts and bruises.

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

A bike rider in Singapore was fined the equivalent of $163 for running a red light while a mother was in the crosswalk pushing her child in a stroller.

………

Local 

A new Caltrans plan to rebuild and widen Lincoln Boulevard — otherwise known as PCH — where it crosses Ballona Creek will include new sidewalks and protected bike lanes, along with lighting, landscaping and signage.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition and city Arts and Culture staffers will host a Pasadena Public Art Bike Ride tomorrow morning.

 

State

He gets it. A writer for the Thousand Oaks Acorn says “Bicycling instead of driving is a great way to reduce traffic, cut pollution, and save energy while contributing to California’s climate goals.”

The Big Bear bike parks will be opening in the next few weeks, with Snow Valley Bike Park opening weekends beginning May 24th, and Summit Bike Park opening daily on June 7th.

Pleasanton seniors discuss bike safety, amid concerns that a lack of safe infrastructure will keep older people from biking.

Mission Local shares photos from San Francisco’s Ride of Silence.

San Francisco Mayor Breed promises protected bike lanes in front of City Hall, even if “some supervisors have to give up their parking spaces.”

No bias here, either. A pair of writers for El Tecolote complain about the San Francisco MTA’s approval a $1.5 million contract with the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition to provide bicycle education for the next five years — which works out to just $300,000 a year — saying it “frees the Bicycle Coalition to hire a phalanx of lobbyists to influence city policy with Supervisors, commissioners, and city staff in all departments.”

Sonoma County is being sued by a woman who suffered a broken neck when she hit a pothole on her bike, on the same street where another woman was seriously injured hitting another pothole ten years earlier.

 

National

If you missed yesterday’s Bike to Work/Bike to Wherever Day, you may still have time to catch it today in New York or Seattle.

Seriously? ABC network officials are reportedly mad that Good Morning America 3 host DeMarco Morgan posted an Instagram photo wearing “skin-tight bike shorts” that “doesn’t leave much to the imagination.” Except he’s actually wearing a very normal bike jersey and padded bike shorts that leave about as much to the imagination as any other spandex-clad bicyclist. 

A self-described “car guy” swapped his four wheeler for an e-cargo bike for a week, and ended up rethinking what cars are really for.

Boise, Idaho intends to become the next bicycle capital of America. Although they may have to get in line behind all the other cities with the same aspirations. 

Idaho bicyclists got donuts and French pastries for Bike to School and Work Day. Meanwhile, LA bike riders got squat.

If you build it, they will come. After going a bike lane building binge in recent years, Chicago has doubled the number of bike trips over the past five years, with the greatest increase on the city’s South Side.

 

International

Hundreds of people turned out for a two-wheeled rave through the streets of Victoria, British Columbia.

Tragic news from the UK, where a “fit and active” 80-year old man died after falling from his bike following an “incident” with a van, after he was forced to ride close to the roadway when debris in the bike path narrowed it to just two feet wide; an inspector looked at the path just weeks before his death, and said it looked just hunky dory.

An Irish advocacy group rightfully complains that less than 350 drivers were fined for parking in bike lanes throughout the entire country in one recent year.

Mobility Outlook talks with the Head of Brand for India’s Hero Cycles, which it says is helping reshape the evolving bicycling culture in India with their ebikes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Two-time former world champ Julian Alaphilippe won the 12th stage of the Giro on Thursday in a solo breakaway; leader Tadej Pogačar finished in the main pack to hold on to the pink jersey.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could pay tribute to Vincent van Van Gogh — cutting off your ear is optional. Your next super-ebike mountain bike could be a McLaren, yes, that McLaren.

And there’s a new AI sheriff in town to keep you from cheating on your KOMs.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Happy Bike to Work/Bike Anywhere Day, Gov. Newsom says screw the planet and keep on driving, and Bike Talk talks racing

Just 229 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We made it up another notch to 1,132 signatures, so don’t stop now! Urge everyone you know to sign the petition, until she meets with us! 

………

Happy Bike to Work/Bike Anywhere Day! Or as it’s known in Los Angeles these days, Thursday.

But at least you can get free Metro and Metrolink rides with your bike today, along with free Metro Bike rides.

Meanwhile, San Diego expects to have at least 10,000 people participate in the city’s Bike Anywhere Day, while the local public radio station tells you how to make the most of it.

………

Evidently, California Governor Gavin Newsom wasn’t serious about all that climate change stuff.

Newsom, who Politico described as fully embracing the role of climate governor, had this to say in a press release in 2022.

“Cleaning the air we breathe. Protecting our communities from the harmful impacts of the oil industry. Accelerating California’s clean energy future. Each of these actions on their own are monumental steps to tackling the climate crisis – but California isn’t waiting a minute longer to get them done. We’re taking all of these major actions now in the most aggressive push on climate this state has ever seen because later is too late. Together with the Legislature’s leadership, the progress we make on the climate crisis this year will be felt for generations – and the impact will spread far beyond our borders. California will continue blazing a trail for America and the rest of the world on the swift and meaningful actions necessary for cutting carbon pollution, protecting communities and leading the clean energy future.”

But just two years later, he is proposing a whopping $600 million cut to the state’s Active Transportation Program to address the state’s massive budget shortfall — which Streetsblog’s Melanie Curry describes as “the most climate, energy, and equity efficient program in the entire transportation budget.”

All because he doesn’t want to touch the state’s massive $21 billion highway fund, as spokesperson for the governor claims that diverting highway funds could “negatively impact the key work that Caltrans does to maintain the state highway system.”

In other words, appeasing motorists by building and widening highways and fixing freeway potholes is far more important than, say, saving the planet.

The mealy-mouth hypocrisy is astounding.

Or it would be if Newsom hadn’t long ago revealed just how shallow his commitment is when it conflict with political expediency.

This is how Calbike Policy Director Jared Sanchez addressed the issue in an email to supporters.

There is no deficit in California’s transportation budget. Thanks to federal funding streams, there’s no need for transportation cuts.

Yet, Governor Gavin Newsom cut almost $600 million from the Active Transportation Program (ATP) in his draft budget. The ATP funds projects that make biking and walking safer and more appealing, advancing the infrastructure changes needed to combat climate change.

Tell the Legislature to Restore Full ATP Funding

This cut amounts to eliminating an entire ATP funding cycle, significantly reducing funding for infrastructure that will reduce soaring pedestrian deaths and enable more people to get around safely by bicycle.

The Active Transportation Program needs more funding, not less.

  • The ATP already turned away many worthy biking and walking projects because of a lack of funding, even before this cut.
  • The governor’s budget doesn’t cut funding for climate-killing highways.
  • California can afford to fund the ATP. With rising climate chaos, we can’t afford not to spend money on active transportation.
  • This drastic cut will affect communities across California, forcing local governments to delay planned bikeways — maybe one near you.

Last year, the governor tried to cut the ATP, and the legislature restored the funding. Tell your representatives we need them to protect active transportation again.

Seriously. do it already.

………

Megan Lynch offers a photo from last night’s Ride of Silence in Davis, with a promise of more to come. So check back with her later.

………

Bike Talk talks with longtime bike scribe Joe Lindsey about this year’s racing season.

………

It’s now 148 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

The UK’s Conservative government passed a new law to address a problem that seldom happens, criminalizing causing death or serious injury by dangerous or careless cycling, with a maximum penalty of up to 14 years behind bars — seven years more than the penalty for doing the same thing with a car — as party leader Iain Duncan Smith insisted the anti-bicycling law isn’t anti-bicycling.  Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

I ain’t afraid of no ebike. Police in the UK are developing a Ghostbusters-style electromagnetic pulse, aka EMP, weapon to instantly stop scofflaw ebike or e-scooter riders in their tracks. And probably fry any electronic devices in the vicinity. Thanks again to Megan Lynch. 

Bike riders in Ireland respond to “highly regrettable” new signs on Irish Rail banning bicyclists at peak times, calling it a step backwards eliminates the possibility of muti-modal commuting.

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

A woman hit by a bicyclist in London’s Regent Park earlier this month urged bike riders to slow down, as a British broadcast network clocked bicyclists riding up to 7 mph over the park’s 20 mph speed limit.

………

Local 

A writer for Condé Nast Traveler rides along with The Mixed Race, a weekly high-speed, women-led public bicycling group zipping through the streets of Los Angeles every Thursday night.

A WeHo website continues its recent anti-bike lane screeds, arguing that building protected bike lanes will take a sizable investment in staffer time and money. Even though not building them could prove substantially more expensive in the long run, as the city will be required to pay out lawsuits for any bike riders killed or injured where they would have been built.

The South Bay beach cities are considering even tighter restriction on ebikes, following a confrontation between local residents and a group of ebike-riding hooligans. Even though the type of bikes they were riding had nothing to do with the incident. And never mind that they were riding throttle-controlled fat bikes that should be reclassified as mopeds or electric motor scooters. 

 

State

Outside challenges you to three days of bicycling bliss along Southern California’s epic bike trails, starting with the El Prieto trail in the mountains above Pasadena, followed by nearby Tapia Canyon, and the Connect G-Out, Sidewinder, Dogtag and Karl’s trails in the scrubland east of Santa Clarita. And that’s just Day 1.

Bakersfield has seen a 30% jump in reports of bicycling collisions in just the last two years.

 

National

A new report ranks which states are most interested in bicycling, based on the volume of internet searches for “different bike types,” “cycling safety,” and “learning to ride,” which may not exactly be the best way to determine it; Washington, Rhode Island and Vermont top the list, with California all the way down at number eight.

A Chicago public radio station discusses what the city is doing to protect bike riders, as it suffers an average of over 1,400 bicycle collisions each year. Hint: Not enough. 

Crashes between Massachusetts bike riders and pedestrians are flagged as an emerging threat as bike lanes expand in the state. As if pedestrians don’t have a responsibility to look both ways before stepping into a bike lane, and misbehaving bicyclists would be no less dangerous without them.

DC councilmembers are pushing to restore funding for a controversial lane reduction and bike lane project, after the mayor thought he had killed it.

Bicycle advocates in Baton Rouge and New Orleans join a public radio station to discuss how to improve bike infrastructure in the Bayou State.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Georgia man plans to ride 82 miles to celebrate his 82nd birthday, after riding his age every year since he turned 70.

 

International

An op-ed in the Evening Standard says London’s bike riders aren’t killers, and the bicycling community in the city’s Regent Park is “keen” to protect others.

London’s transportation department tells bike riders to improve their behavior around floating bus stops, even though only four people have been hit by bike riders in three years.

Good Net considers how the city’s bicycle revolution is rapidly transforming Paris, as the number of bike riders has overtaken the amount of motorists on the city’s rues.

A new Finnish study shows that people who received their bicycles through a workplace benefit program ride more than five times the miles of the average Finn.

Germany is conducting a study allowing s-pedelecs — ped-assist bikes capable of doing up to 28 mph — on a special high speed bike path to determine if they can safely share bike paths with slower riders.

A new petition in Hyderabad, India, calls on the city to do more to make it bike friendly and promote active mobility.

No surprise here, as the new 100% tariffs Joe Biden imposed on Chinese-made electric vehicles and batteries could double the price of ebike batteries.

 

Competitive Cycling

Tadej Pogačar maintained his two minute and forty second hold on the Giro’s pink leader’s jersey, as Italy’s Jonathan Milan survived a mass sprint to win the race’s 11th stage on Wednesday.

The formerly high-flying Visma-Lease a Bike cycling team is falling apart at the Giro, with the team down to just four riders with ten stages to go after both sprinter Olav Kooij and Cian Uijtdebroeks, who was fifth in the general classification, dropped out and Robert Gesink and Christophe Laporte both crashed out in the first week; team leaders Wout van Aert and Jonas Vingegaard were already out following crashes earlier this year.

World champ Mathieu van der Poel will skip mountain biking at the Paris Olympics to focus on the Olympic road race, after competing in the Tour de France..

Olympic triathlete Taylor Knibb even stunned even herself by earning a second Olympic berth by winning the women’s time trial at the U.S. road cycling championships in Charlotte, West Virginia.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can star in an ebike commercial being shot in Orange County and Big Bear.

And if you’re going to deliver food orders, it might as well be from a Penny Farthing.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

Proposed LA County budget zeroes Vision Zero funding, and Bike to Work/Bike to Anywhere Day heats up — except in LA

Just 232 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’re still stuck on 1,131 signatures, so don’t stop now! Urge everyone you know to sign the petition, until she meets with us! 

Photo by Darren Graves.

………

Seriously?

LA County is apparently planning to zero out funding for Vision Zero. But you’ll have to hurry, because the County Board of Supervisors is meeting at 9:30 today to discuss the proposed budget.

You can find all the details in the link.

………

A handful of events will mark Bike to Work/Bike to Anywhere Day in parts of LA County today and tomorrow.

Or as it’s known in the City of LA this year, Wednesday. And Thursday.

Burbank is hosting a pre-Bike to Work Day event at Johnny Carson Park from 11 am to 2 pm today, with complimentary bike check-ups and refurbished bike sales from Burbank Bike Angels, as well as other reps from local bike shops and advocacy groups.

Playa Vista Compass is hosting an early Bike to Work Day pit stop from 8 to 10 am today.

In addition to tonight’s Ride of Silence at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, there will also be a Los Angeles Ride of Silence starting at Re:Ciclos in Koreatown.

West Hollywood is teaming with the West Hollywood Bicycle Coalition to host a Bike to Work pit stop at 8743 Santa Monica Boulevard from 7 to 9 am tomorrow.

Santa Monica Next looks at the events, giveaways and an array of refreshment pit stops for Santa Monica’s Bike to Anywhere Day, nee Bike to Work Day, on Thursday.

………

Oh, The Places You’ll Go!

Well, you will, right?

………

The famed Mayor Clinic offers quick tips on how to avoid common injuries while riding your bike.

My best advice is to keep it upright, and just try to stay on it.

………

A pair of video hosts for GCN recall the dumb, painful and craziest things they’ve done on a bike.

………

It’s now 145 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

No bias here. KTLA-5 examines the stop sign cams operated by the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority, the public entity overseeing over 75,000 acres of Southern California parklands. But they do if from the perspective of an aggrieved father whose son rolled a stop sign and considers it an unfair money grab, rather than a program designed to save lives by keeping drivers from breaking one of the most basic traffic laws.

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

Evidently, a headline writer for the Daily Mail has never seen a bicycle — or just can’t shake that windshield perspective — writing that the husband of a woman who was mowed down by ‘anti social’ teen called for harsher sentences for reckless riders, after a “spate of accidents behind the wheel.”

………

Local 

This is who we share the road with. An alleged speeding drunk driver killed a home in Garden Grove. And the woman who was sleeping in it with her husband. Thanks to How the West Was Saved for the link.

The Santa Monica City Council considers a quintet of bike motions, including what would be LA County’s second bicyclist anti-harassment ordinance, after Los Angeles passed a similar measure in 2011, as well as examining what improvements are necessary to make Neilson Way a “safer and more attractive place to walk or ride a bicycle.”

 

State

Sad news from Stockton, where a man was killed when he was rear-ended at 75 mph while inexplicably riding his bicycle in the left lane of the I-5 Freeway.

Tragic news from Hayward, where a student from India’s Telugu region studying for his master’s at Cal State East Bay is in extremely critical condition and not expected to survive after he was struck by a driver while riding his ebike to see his family; family members are trying to raise funds to send his body back to India.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on how to get your money’s worth when you sell your bike. Read it on AOL this time if the magazine blocks you.

The Cycling Independent examines why nearly every major bikemaker is struggling right now, and what it could mean going forward. Thanks to Malcomb Watson for the heads-up. 

Nice gesture from the widow of a fallen Seattle bicyclist, who donated $20,000 raised in a crowdfunding campaign after his death to local safe streets organizations.

A Wisconsin bike shop owner shares his “unpopular opinions” as the BikeFarmer on YouTube, including that the best bike for most people is the one you already have.

Good idea. A Michigan advocacy group is pushing to reclassify killing or injuring someone on a bicycle as a felony, instead of leaving it up to prosecutors to decide whether to file as a felony or misdemeanor.

 

International

Momentum considers five bicycle-friendly cities for a memorable spring bike getaway. Needless to say, none of them is Los Angeles.

Colombian pro cyclist Javier Jamaica was the victim of violent thieves who knocked him off his bike, then beat him and tied him up, before taking off with his cell phone, helmet, sunglasses and bike shoes; the Venezuelan suspects reportedly laughed at police when they arrested them.

Strava responded to calls to remove a popular section of London’s Regent’s Park where a speeding bike rider killed an elderly pedestrian, urging bicyclists to prioritize everyone’s safety, instead.

London’s floating bus stops may live on, after a member of the city assembly backed them for saving lives, despite complaints of reckless bike riders plowing through lines of bus passengers blocking the bike lanes.

 

Competitive Cycling

The Washington Post looks at Indiana University’s iconic Little 500, the “wacky, grueling bike race” that captivates Bloomington Indiana, and was made famous in Breaking Away.

Former Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas is getting frustrated over conditions in the Giro, insisting “We’re just clowns in a circus.”

Good question. Cycling Weekly wants to know why cyclists put up with dangerous driving in bike races, when we wouldn’t accept it in any other circumstance.

Defending US Men’s and Women’s National Road Cycling champs Chloé Dygert and Quinn Simmons won’t defend their titles at this weekend’s Nats in West Virginia, opting instead for automatic berths on the US team in the Paris Olympics.

Finnish F1 driver Valtteri Bottas is having better luck on bikes than cars this year, after recently finishing 11th in Norther California’s Grasshopper Adventure Series alongside his girlfriend, Aussie pro cyclist Tiffany Cromwell.

 

Finally…

Your old bike chains could have a new life as Pokémon sculptures. That feeling when even riding an ebike up the city’s steepest hill proves a challenge.

And who would win a race between a bicyclist and a longboarder down California’s Donner Pass?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

San Diego advocates call for fixing “Fatal 15” intersections, and LAist talks with the originator of the 15-minute city

Just 233 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’re still stuck on 1,131 signatures, so don’t stop now! Urge everyone you know to sign the petition, until she meets with us! 

………

Advocates from Circulate San Diego, Families for Safe Streets San Diego and the San Diego Bicycle Coalition held a press conference yesterday calling for simple, inexpensive fixes to the city’s “Fatal 15” intersections.

Their suggestions are nothing new. They’ve been calling for the same solutions to the city’s deadliest intersections for the past year, but they were left out of the mayor’s budget for the coming year.

However, the mayor is scheduled to release an updated budget today, and they’re asking for the fixes — which would cost $100,000 per intersection, or just $1.5 million total — to be included in the revised budget.

According to Streetsblog’s Melanie Currie,

“This is a high-return, low-cost budget item,” said Will Moore, Policy Counsel for Circulate San Diego. “We understand that it is difficult to run a city. There are a lot of hard decisions – so it is even more important to get the easy ones right.”

Even though the city of San Diego “committed to” Vision Zero almost ten years ago, pedestrian deaths remain high; nearly fifty pedestrians and cyclists lose their lives in traffic crashes in San Diego every year.

Katie Gordon’s husband Jason was killed at one of the “Fatal 15″ intersections. Now a member of Families for Safe Streets San Diego, she spoke of her husband and their twin daughters at today’s gathering, and urged the city to budget for these fixes. “Small improvements make a big impact,” she said. “Please don’t let the ‘Fatal 15’ take another life.”

But if it comes down to a question of money, maybe someone could remind the mayor it would cost the city a hell of a lot more than that just to settle with the survivors of the next one.

………

LAist talks with Carlos Moreno, originator of the 15-minute city, about his simple plan to reduce traffic and improve the livability of cities by increasing density and placing everything you need for daily life within 15 minutes of your home.

…Picture living in a bustling neighborhood where all your friends, basic needs, and even your job are reachable by a quick walk or bike or bus ride. (Something many people experience, possibly for the first and last time, on college campuses.) In such a city, parking areas may have been reclaimed as urban greenways, chance encounters with neighbors might be more common, and small local businesses would proliferate and thrive.

This vision is sometimes referred to as “the 15-minute city,” a concept pioneered by Franco-Colombian scientist and mathematician Carlos Moreno. It means basically what it sounds like: Instead of expecting residents to get in their cars and drive long distances to work, run errands, and take part in social activities, cities should instead be designed to provide those kinds of opportunities in close proximity to where people live, reducing overdependence on cars and increasing local social cohesion.

Paris, Moreno’s home, was the first city to put this concept into practice — part of a larger strategy to reduce air pollution and the presence of cars in the city’s iconic downtown areas. Since 2011, the French capital has reportedly reduced car traffic by 45 percent and associated nitrogen oxide pollution by 40 percent.

Even if you’re familiar with the concept, it’s worth reading to get a full grasp of the plan, which conspiracy theorists are somehow twisting into unrecognizably bizarre abstractions.

Then again, it’s also worth contributing a few bucks to support the public news site, which is currently facing upcoming layoffs.

………

There’s still time to provide your input on the update for the LA County Bicycle Master Plan.

………

This PSA from Rovélo Creative effectively makes the point that it’s not the bicycles that make our streets dangerous.

………

It’s now 144 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

………

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

No bias here. A Michigan two-way bike lane is being blamed for a collision involving a bicyclist because drivers aren’t used to the idea, rather than blaming the drivers for not grasping such a simple concept.

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

Um, okay. “Keen” bicyclist and BBC Top Gear host James May suggested that Britain doesn’t need to impose further speed restrictions on bicyclists because most bike riders aren’t fit enough to go that fast, after a court ruled that speed limits don’t apply to bicycles.

………

Local 

Metrolink is marking Bike Week with fare-free rides through Friday, if you board with your bike; LA Metro will also provide free bus and train rides to bike riders on Thursday’s Bike to Work/Bike Anywhere Day, along with free Metro Bike rides.

The DA’s office removed the prosecutors who got a conviction against wealthy socialist Rebecca Grossman for the high-speed crash that killed two little kids just crossing the street with their family from the case, over a perceived conflict of interest that really isn’t, which could affect the case as she appeals her conviction. And understandably outraging the victim’s parents.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton examines Glendale’s new quick-build North Brand Boulevard Complete Streets Demonstration Project, complete with painted curb extensions and barrier-protected bike lanes; unfortunately, it doesn’t extend south to the street’s busy commercial corridor.

Colorado Boulevard offers a reminder about tomorrow’s Ride of Silence at the Rose Bowl.

Urbanize looks at a coming Complete Streets makeover for Eastern Ave in El Sereno, using funding that had originally been directed to the cancelled 710 Freeway extension.

Streetsblog reminds us about this Sunday’s CicLAmini in Wilmington, a more compact edition of the popular CicLAvia open streets events.

Long Beach’s popular Beach Streets open streets event will return this fall, after Sunday’s original date was canceled due to Metro funding changes.

 

State

Caltrans explains how to be a Complete Streets ambassador to help get the legislature to pass SB 960, aka the Complete Streets Bill, which will require Caltrans to add infrastructure for people who bike, walk and take transit whenever it repaves a state roadway.

The Orange County Register says Governor Newsom should balance the state budget by slashing climate spending, instead of say, reducing the state’s massive highway fund. After all, it’s not like there’s a climate emergency or anything. 

San Francisco public television station KQED offers advice on what to do if your bike gets stolen, including registering it with Bike Index before that happens.

 

National

Common Edge takes a deep dive into legendary pioneering urbanist Jane Jacobs and her love of bicycling.

A new study shows that people who regularly ride bicycles have a lower rate of knee trouble later in life.

The get it. Denver is reducing the city’s EV charger rebate to $200 to fund more ebike vouchers for income-qualified residents, after a study found nearly 80% of the city’s ebike vouchers have gone to well-off white people.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune offers Bike Week tips for beginning bike commuters, which apply down here, too.

Michigan’s carfree Mackinac Island bans throttle controlled ebikes, with one official describing them as basically an electric motorcycle, while making clear that ped-assist ebikes are still welcome.

Cincinnati is relaunching the city’s docked bikeshare program, despite shutting it down due to funding issues earlier in the year, after several organizations contributed nearly half a million dollars to fund it through the end of this year.

The New York Times has a new newsletter addressing the battle for space on the city’s streets and sidewalks. I’m not sure if you’ll be able to see this one without a subscription, so let me know so I’ll know whether to include it going forward. 

Discussions are underway to include a bike lane on a new Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore, which will replace the bridge that collapsed after it was struck by a massive freighter in March.

Sad news from Miami, where a trolley passenger was somehow run down and killed as he was he was attempting to remove his bicycle from the front rack.

 

International

London’s Royal Parks requested that Strava remove the Regent’s Park segment on the app to discourage high speed riding in the park, after an 81-year old woman was killed by a speeding rider on the wrong side of the road as he passed a slower driver. Although there has been no suggestion that the app had anything to do with the crash that killed her.

McDonald’s is launching a program to get the Philippines biking, while using the company’s drive-ins as refueling stations for bicyclists.

 

Competitive Cycling

A team car was caught on video running down a French rider in the U19 women’s Championnats de Cyclisme de l’Avenir. Amandine Muller and Célia Gery were leading the race when Gery dropped back to talk to the driver of her team car; the driver bumped into Muller’s wheel, causing her to go down, where she was hit by Gery, who also hit the pavement. Another reminder that motor vehicles do not belong in the peloton. 

Cyclist ranks every UCI WorldTour race.

 

Finally…

Your next bike helmet could be inspired by NASA tech, but without the boosters and stuff. And what has six wheels, e-assist pedals and can jackknife like a semi?

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin

The late Sam Rubin was one of us, state officials just tinker with PCH safety, and drivers want all of WeHo streets

Just 234 days until Los Angeles fails to meet its Vision Zero pledge to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025.
So stop what you’re doing and sign this petition to demand Mayor Bass hold a public meeting to listen to the dangers we all face on the mean streets of LA.

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

We’re still stuck on 1,131 signatures, so don’t stop now! Urge everyone you know to sign the petition, until she meets with us! 

Photo from the Sam Rubin Wikipedia page.

………

My apologies for another unexcused absence. 

Caring for my wife and her broken shoulder 24/7, along with suddenly becoming the sole caretaker for the corgi — never mind dealing with my own ever-growing health problems — leaves me with a very small window to work each day. 

And writing about a pair of fallen bicyclists Thursday night, as important as that was, took up all the time I had available to work. 

I’d like to say it won’t happen again, but it probably will until we get all this crap sorted out.

………

Larry Kawalec forwards news that longtime KTLA-5 entertainment reporter Sam Rubin was one of us.

Rubin took pride in organizing the station’s team for the annual MS 150 Bay to Bay Bike Tour, which raises funds to find a cure for multiple sclerosis.

He died unexpectedly on Friday from a rumored cardiac arrest. Sam Rubin was 64.

………

State transportation officials unveiled a new traffic safety campaign for PCH in Malibu, urging drivers to “Go Safely.”

The Go Safely PCH initiative calls for increased traffic enforcement, enhanced infrastructure and a public awareness campaign, with California Transportation Secretary Toks Omishakin saying “it signifies a collective effort to ensure the safety of all travelers along this iconic corridor.”

Although that “enhanced infrastructure” is little more than paint, with the state applying $4.2 million worth of lane separators, crosswalk striping, more visible road striping, speed limit markings, more speed limit and curve warning signs, pavement upgrades, bike lanes and pedestrian access, reaching from the McClure Tunnel in Santa Monica to the Ventura County line.

And as we all know, a little bit of paint and road signs urging people to drive safely is all it takes to bring bad driver behavior and traffic violence screeching to a halt.

Right?

While there may be some modest benefit to the program, it represents a continuation of the state’s policy of just tinkering at the edges, investing as little money and effort as possible to do something to improve safety without inconveniencing all those people cruising down the highway in their hermetically sealed vehicles.

When what’s actually needed is a wholesale re-imagination of the deadly corridor, which is currently engineered to encourage speeding, to turn it into Malibu’s commercial Main Street and beachfront byway, instead of a highway designed to maximize throughput and funnel as many cars through as quickly as possible.

Adding a little more paint, posting more speed limit signs and urging drivers to “Go Safely” is the least they can do.

Which, sadly, is the most they ever seem to do.

………

A West Hollywood website seems to blame the West Hollywood Bicycle Coalition for upcoming bike-friendly improvements to the city’s streets.

According the WeHo Online Community News, the city is moving forward with “highly controversial plans to install protected bicycle lanes on Fountain Avenue, Willoughby Avenue, Gardner Avenue and eventually Santa Monica Boulevard, at the cost of increased vehicle congestion and a loss of street parking.”

As if city officials had somehow just rubber stamped the coalition’s “wish list,” without determining whether the changes were actually needed or wanted.

Anyone who has tried to ride in or through the city is undoubtedly aware that cars and the people in them currently dominate the lion’s share of the city streets, with a few relatively minor and mostly unsafe exceptions.

Adding protected bike lanes and other safety improvements simply rebalances the equation to provide safe spaces for people outside of car, while improving safety for everyone on the street. Yet still largely maintaining the current automotive hegemony.

But evidently, they just want all the streets themselves, and the hell with anyone else.

………

A new report concludes that 8% of deaths among homeless people in Los Angeles was due to traffic violence.

The only real surprise is that the number is so low.

………

Burbank is planning a series of overnight road closures through June 3rd to build a new protected bike lane.

………

Gravel Bike California offers a video recap of the recent Sea Otter Classic in Monterey.

………

It’s now 143 days since the California ebike incentive program’s latest failure to launch, which was promised no later than fall 2023. And 35 months since it was approved by the legislature and signed into law — and counting.

Meanwhile, Michigan Democrats included a modest $3 million in the state budget for ebike vouchers covering up to 90% of the purchase price, which Republicans somehow concluded is “off the rails.”

Residents of Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard can get a rebate for up to 90% off the cost of an ebike.

Connecticut is considering a lottery for their next round of ebike vouchers, anticipating that demand for the vouchers will far outstrip supply. Which makes a hell of a lot more sense than California’s plan to start and stop the voucher program every two months to allow them to better mismanage it.

And in news that really shouldn’t surprise anyone who’s paying attention, a British Columbia study shows that ebike rebates really do reduce motor vehicle usage.

………

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

Sacramento bicyclists are complaining about drivers illegally using a ten-mile long bike path, in an apparent attempt to bypass traffic; local residents say they see an average of seven motorists using the path each day, including a recent truck driver.

No bias here. British actor Nigel Havers claimed that “no cars go through a red light,” while “every cyclist does.” A bizarre assertion that’s demonstrably false on both counts, apparently based on the extensive knowledge of traffic safety he gained starring in Chariots of Fire. 

Speaking of disgruntled British actors, Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz star Simon Pegg posted a video that may or may not have been an attempt at humor, showing himself passing bike riders as he drives, while telling bicyclists to “fuck off,” “get out of the way,” “just because you can ride two-abreast, doesn’t mean you fucking have to”, and to “get out of the middle of the fucking road, dopey”. And to think I used to like that potty mouthed son of a mother. 

No bias here, either. The British press is on a rampage over the more than 30 pedestrians killed by bicyclists over the past decade, calling for a new law to criminalize dangerous bicycling, as if the current laws against it aren’t enough. Although calling people riding bicycles on the sidewalk “terrorists” just needlessly diminishes the meaning of the word, at a time when people are literally dying because of it. And just wait until someone tells them about the 17,052 people killed by drivers in the UK over the same period. 

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

A Quebec mother blames bike lanes and scofflaw bicyclists after her four-year old daughter was “assaulted” by a woman riding a bicycle, who apparently ignored the stop signs on a school bus, and slammed head on into the little girl as she crossed the bike lanes to get to her bus.

Then again, Londoners may have some reason for concern after all, after a dog walker in the city’s Regent Park suffered multiple skull fractures to her eye socket, jawbone and cheekbone, as well as musculoskeletal injuries, when she was struck by a speeding bicyclist who strayed onto the wrong side of the road to pass a car, at the same spot where another bike rider had killed an 81-year old woman.

The Daily Mail bizarrely asserts that all drivers observe the 20 mph speed limit, while bicyclists routinely ignore it; one bike rider was clocked doing 32 mph. Maybe British drivers are different, but the idea that all, or even most, drivers in the US routinely observe any speed limit would be laughable. 

Meanwhile, a British columnist insists that when he rides a bike, he does everything right, just like he does when he’s driving. But all those other bad, bad bike riders should have to wear numbered plates, and face a new law criminalizing scofflaw bicyclists, who he claims are “even more touchy as a group than almost any other I can think of.”

………

Local 

This is who we share the road with. Three young people were killed, and three others critically injured — and a vacant Pasadena building virtually demolished — when the driver lost control after running a red light and slammed into the building, while traveling at least twice the posted speed limit.

Santa Monica’s Sundays Cycles bike shop was vandalized because of the Israeli flag the owner hung in the window following the October 7th Hamas attack, as someone wrote “Free Palestine” across the window. Although I’d hesitate to call a little easy-to-remove graffiti “vandalism,” whether or not you disagree with the sentiment. 

A 35-year old Compton woman faces multiple charges for the alleged drunken Long Beach hit-and-run that killed a 17-year old boy riding a scooter on Orange Street and South Street.

 

State

Calbike condemns the governor’s draconian cuts to the state’s Active Transportation Program, arguing that, despite the state’s massive $40+ billion budget deficit, there is no deficit in the transportation budget. And never mind that Gov. Newsom could maintain programs aimed at reducing climate change, while actually furthering the state’s climate goals, by cutting highway funding, instead.  

Bakersfield bicyclists are forming an all-volunteer Kern River Bike Patrol, to “promote safety, offer an informed trail presence, trailside information, bike safety advice, flat tire assistance and simple bike repair, as well as first aid skills and other assistance” along the popular bike path on the river’s banks.

 

National

Consumer Reports recommends the best ebike-specific bike helmets.

People recaps the twists and turns of the unsolved murder of Colorado mom Suzanne Morphew, who disappeared four years ago after leaving on a Mother’s Day bike ride; her body was found in September, 50 miles from her home, with traces of an animal tranquilizer in her system.

This is your chance to bike New York’s famed Watkins Glen race track, with an all-too-brief two hour window this Wednesday.

The emotional husband of fallen bicyclist and foreign diplomat Sarah Debbink Langenkamp celebrated the passage of a new Maryland law passed in her memory, which imposes a fine up to $2,000 and two months behind bars for killing someone riding in a bike lane.

 

International

A columnist for Cycling Weekly says people who don’t ride bikes think there’s something wrong with us, and imagine we’re a strange breed, even to our close friends.

Life is cheap in Ontario, where a speeding driver walked with a lousy $2,000 fine and six month’s probation for killing an 81-year old man riding his bike to a weekly gathering with his family.

The UK’s transportation secretary is considering a ban on floating bus stops, which could preclude building segregated bike paths.

Belgian Royal Antwerp soccer star Eliot Matazo killed an 85-year old bike rider in a collision, after the victim allegedly ran a red light.

 

Competitive Cycling

After nine stages, Tadej Pogačar continues to lead the Giro, with a two minute 40 second margin, with Daniel Martinez second and Geraint Thomas a surprising third, after Olav Koolj of the Netherlands took the stage win.

Costa Rican pro Andrey Amador was lucky to escape with a broken ankle and foot when a truck driver ran over hit foot and destroyed his bike, after he slipped on gravel on a training ride in Spain.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to break into Drake’s home, don’t leave your bike behind — and if you do, don’t come back to get it later. Now you, too, can pedal a propeller to push you through the water like a human torpedo; thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up.

And that feeling when you have to wear a bike helmet to a tennis match to avoid getting bonked in the head with a water bottle.

Again.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin