Tag Archive for murder

Arrest warrant issued in Mo Wilson love triangle murder, and bike & pedestrian bills move forward in CA legislature

Before we start, I’ve received a number of reports that someone on a bicycle was killed while riding in Claremont on Friday. 

Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find any confirmation yet. 

I’ll let you know if I learn more.

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It’s one of the oldest stories in Hollywood.

But this isn’t Hollywood. And this time, it’s not just some filmmaker’s fantasy.

Because it turns out the murder of rising gravel cyclist and mountain biker Moriah “Mo” Wilson was the result of an old fashioned love triangle.

Wilson was shot multiple times and killed August 11th while in Austin, Texas to prepare for the Gravel Locos race.

After investigating, police have issued a first degree murder warrant for 34-year old Kaitlin Marie Armstrong, the business partner, and off-and-on romantic partner, of pro gravel cyclist Colin Strickland, who operates a vintage trailer restoration business.

Strickland said he had a brief romantic relationship with Wilson last fall, before reconciling with Armstrong.

Apparently, they were on a “break” at the time.

Wilson and Strickland had gone swimming together that afternoon, before he dropped her off at the apartment of a friend she was staying with.

According to The New York Times, police had taken Armstrong into custody a day after the shooting, but let her go hours later.

The day after Ms. Wilson was found dead, the police took Ms. Armstrong into custody on an unspecified misdemeanor warrant but were then informed that the warrant was not valid and told Ms. Armstrong she could leave if she wanted to, the affidavit said…

The affidavit said the police had received a tip from an anonymous caller. The caller said Ms. Armstrong had said in January that she wanted to kill Ms. Wilson after learning that Mr. Strickland was in a romantic relationship with Ms. Wilson while he was dating Ms. Armstrong.

Now they have no idea where she is.

A Boston website reports Strickland originally lied about his own whereabouts the day of the shooting in an effort to hide his involvement with Wilson.

He also bought two guns last winter, for himself and Armstrong — including the weapon apparently used to kill Wilson.

The murder has left the Austin bicycling community in shock.

Meanwhile, a crowdfunding page to “help fund community organizations that help youth find self-confidence, strength, and joy through biking, skiing, and other activities that Moriah was passionate about” has raised over $60,000 of the $100,000 goal.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

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Streetsblog notes that most bike, pedestrian and transit bills in the state legislature are moving forward.

That included the Bicycle Omnibus Bill and another attempt at getting the Stop As Yield bill, aka the Idaho Stop, past the governor’s desk.

However, it also includes a bill requiring bikeshare and e-scooter companies to insure their riders, which would likely put them all out of business.

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Mark your calendar to help make biking better in Orange County.

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An Indian man and his son can’t contain their joy over buying a used bike.

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

Seriously? After bike-riding Miami couple were killed by a fatigued driver who may have been sleeping at the wheel, the local police respond by reminding bike riders and drivers to obey the law, saying safety is a shared responsibility. Even though the victims didn’t do a damn thing wrong, except share the road with a driver without enough sense to pull over when he was too tired to drive.

Two London bike riders were attacked by a driver who pulled up next to them before tossing thumbtacks in their path.

After a British truck driver was caught on video buzzing a bike-riding cop in hi-viz, angry drivers tried to defend the close pass by insisting the driver stayed in his lane.

A member of Britain’s national cycling team was lucky to escape serious injury when he was intentionally rear-ended by a road raging hit-and-run driver.

More proof drivers are the same everywhere, as a road raging Parisian driver ends an argument with a bike rider by driving over his bike, and dragging it under his car as he tried to drive off without stopping.

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

After Fresno’s mayor posts a video suggesting he rode his ebike to work for Bike to Work Day, it turned out he didn’t really ride, and doesn’t even own the bike he was riding.

A Houston robbery victim ran over the thief’s bicycle getting away after the robber had shot him.

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Local

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton examines Metro’s annual tradition of lying to justify their ever-expanding highway widening budget, which jumped 33% this year, on top of an 80% increase last year — despite promising to switch to a more multimodal approach. Never mind that they’re burning money while helping to set our world on fire in the midst of an ever-worsening climate emergency.

The BBC takes a look at my friend and bike shop owner Carlos Morales and the Eastside Bike Club he founded in 2008.

 

State 

Menifee is building a new six acre bike park.

Sad news from Fremont, where a seven-year old chid was killed when they were struck by a driver while riding a bicycle. Even if a San Francisco website can’t decide if the kid was riding a bike or walking.

 

National

Best Products says cheap ebikes are taking over the streets, while apparently defining cheap as under two grand.

An 82-year old writer for CleanTechnica shares the lessons he’s learned in eight years of ebike ownership and maintenance.

This is who we share the bike path with. An Iowa driver faces DUI and reckless homicide charges for killing one person and injuring two others as they were walking on a multi-use path at two in the morning, after driving nearly the entire length of the pathway.

 

International

A London, Ontario writer reminds pedestrians they don’t belong in bike lanes.

A new Canadian study shows women are more concerned about drivers, and bullying and abuse, than they are about infrastructure.

You’ve got to be kidding. After Scotland’s transport minister says ebikes are the future, a Lycra-clad neanderthal columnist insists ebike riders are cheating.

Half of British women would like to ride their bikes more, but don’t feel safe on the roads and worry about a lack of infrastructure.

A kindhearted teenage Ukrainian refugee in the UK gave his new bike to a fellow refugee so she wouldn’t have to go without one; he was rewarded with an even better bike a few days later.

Companies in Brussels, Belgium are rethinking deliveries, and trading delivery vans for “more environmentally friendly, and often faster, cargo bikes.

New research from the Netherlands suggests that roundabouts are less safe for bike riders than traditional intersections.

Bike sales are surging in Beijing as the city closes parts of its transit system to combat Covid.

An aide to a Malaysian elected official was killed when he fell off his bike on a descent.

Heartbreaking story from Australia, where a Good Samaritan was stabbed to death by a 15-year old boy, after he tried to stop the teenager who had just stolen a bike from a younger boy; the 15-year old was arrested, but has yet to be charged.

 

Competitive Cycling

Britain’s Simon Yates took the win in Saturday’s 14th stage, while Ecuadorean pro Richard Carapaz slipped on the pink leader’s jersey.

All the action took place on Saturday, as an exhausted peloton eased into today’s rest day on Sunday’s stage 15, with Carapaz retaining his newly won leader’s jersey despite an early fall.

Dutch pro Tom Dumoulin threw in the towel on Saturday’s 14th stage, dropping out early in the race, explaining that his “body is worn out;” meanwhile, Alejandro Valverde dropped out of contention after losing eight minutes following a flat.

Former pro Robbie McEwen was forced to apologize for inadvertently using a homophobic slur during a Giro stage 10 broadcast.

 

Finally…

Maybe Obsessive Cycling Disorder isn’t the best name for a bike shop if you don’t want to piss off the OCD community. That feeling when you’ve been visited by the bike fairy.

And it looks like Trevor Noah is one of us. At least when he’s in The Netherlands.

Thanks to Glenn Crider for the link.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

San Diego bike rider injured by elderly driver, crowdfunding for murdered DTLA bike rider, and CA speed cams killed again

Once again, an elderly driver raises the question of how old is too old to drive.

A 57-year old woman riding on San Diego’s SR-56 Bike Trail was seriously injured when an 80-year old man in an SUV slammed into her as he exited State Route 56, and turned right onto Camino Del Sur in Torrey Pines.

The victim was crossing Camino Del Sur in the bike trail’s dedicated crosswalk.

She suffered a fractured pelvis and fifth lumbar vertebrae, but fortunately, her injuries were not believed to be life-threatening.

A street view shows the intersection is controlled with a red light at the crosswalk; however, there’s no word on whether the victim was crossing against the light, or if the driver made an unsafe right on the red.

Phillip Young reports signage at the intersection prohibits making a right turn on a red light when pedestrians or bike riders are present, which drivers routinely ignore. And which should be banned there under all circumstances.

But the crash highlights both the dangers of street crossings on separated bike paths, as well as the inherent risks of allowing people to keep driving long past the age when most driver’s abilities start to decline.

Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up; artwork by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay.

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The victim in the murder of a bike rider in Downtown Los Angeles had attended a game at Dodger Stadium, and was likely on his way to catch a train home when he was attacked just after midnight Tuesday.

Twenty-eight-year old Oscar Gaytan was killed when he was pulled off his bike by his attacker, described only as a man in his 30s, striking his head on the street.

Police are investigating it as a homicide.

A crowdfunding campaign to help pay funeral expenses has raised nearly $10,000 of the $25,000 goal.

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Once again, the California legislature has shamefully decided that not annoying drivers by making them obey the law is more important than saving human lives.

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It’s been shown time and again that this is the most effective way to make changes on our streets.

So why doesn’t Los Angeles ever do it?

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This is how you catch drivers passing unsafely.

Unfortunately, using video or photo evidence to prosecute traffic infractions is illegal in most, if not all, US states, for reasons that will forever escape me.

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

A British bus driver was fined the equivalent of just $500 for a punishment pass that literally forced a bike rider into a roadside hedgerow. Just in case you’re wondering why crap like this keeps happening.

A driver in the UK learns the hard way that there’s no such thing as a friendly warning toot when you’re on a bike.

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

A Singapore man was sentenced to four days behind bars for illegally riding his ebike on the sidewalk, after a 74-year-old woman fractured her shoulder when her umbrella got hooked on his bike.

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Local

Spectrum News 1 reports increased ebike use could cut carbon emissions 50% if they replaced short car trips. Which won’t happen until we provide safe places to ride them.

Burbank has approved a $2 billion plan to reduce the city’s greenhouse gases and achieve carbon neutrality by 2045. Assuming any of us are still around, of course. 

The LACBC looks at a number of upcoming events.

 

State 

The rich get richer. San Diego will soon be adding bike lanes to Convoy Street, Balboa Avenue and Clairemont Mesa Boulevard in the Kearny Mesa neighborhood.

A San Diego TV station says businesses that formerly opposed bike lanes are starting to come around, although another station does its best to suggest no one is using them. Hint: if you want to make it look like no one is a bike lane, show up after 8 am, when many people are already at work or school.

The Bay Area’s BART train system is working to better accommodate bike riders, including people with cargo bikes and other large bicycles.

 

National

The founder of the Vision Zero Network looks at the New Car Assessment Program (NCAP), which is currently up for review, and the “strategies to improve vehicle designs, policies and safety regulations that would save lives if they were implemented.”

new report from the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy says completion of the 3,700-mile Great American Rail-Trail, which extends from DC’s Capitol steps to the coast of Washington State, would pay for itself in just five years in visitor spending alone, generating over $350 million per year in economic activity. Iowa alone would see an additional $14 million in tourist spending every year.

A Wired podcast explains how to get started with bicycling, while Momentum recommends six of the best bicycles for commuting with a side of fun.

Bicycling recommends the best bike jerseys for a more comfortable ride. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

A Denver magazine explains how the 50-year old Iron Horse Classic helped make the small southwestern Colorado town of Durango a bicycling mecca.

The Pueblo, Colorado fire department now has a pair of ebikes to allow it to respond to emergencies where using a fire truck could be difficult.

Kindhearted cops with a Missouri police department dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a 19-year old man, after the one he relied on for transportation was destroyed in a collision.

 

International

Cycling Weekly pits a classic steel Colnago against a modern superbike from the same bikemaker, and finds that 30 years of progress amounts to just 14 seconds in the real world.

New 3D carbon technology promises to lower the rolling resistance of bike tires to increase speed without compromising grip or wear

 

Competitive Cycling

Italian cyclist Stefano Oldani claimed his first victory as a pro in Thursday’s 12th stage of the Giro; it only took Oldani 211 tries to get his first stage win.

The peloton paused to remember fallen pro Wouter Weylandt as the Giro returned to the Passo del Bocco for the first time since his death 11 years ago.

The Giro will now give stage winners uncorked bottles of prosecco, after Eritrean pro Biniam Girmay was forced to withdraw when an errant cork hit him in the eye, following his record-setting effort as the first Black African rider to win a Grand Tour stage.

VeloNews considers what to do and not to do to get mentally ready for a bike race, as well as during the race.

 

Finally…

No, a bike cam can’t protect you from all motorist-related injuries, even with a 360° field of view. That feeling when the food supplies for your record-breaking attempt weren’t really stolen after all.

And let’s all go bouldering by bike.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Update: 28-year old Duarte man riding bicycle killed in DTLA assault just after midnight Tuesday

A man on a bicycle was murdered when he was assaulted in Downtown Los Angeles early this morning.

According to My News LA, the victim was riding near the intersection of Seventh and Flower in DTLA when he was pulled off his bike by an unknown assailant, striking his head on the pavement.

He died at the scene.

There’s no word on whether his bicycle or anything else was taken, or if there was some other reason for the attack. Or any reason at all.

KTLA-5 identifies the victim only as a man in his 30s.

Anyone with information is urged to call 877/527-3247.

This is at least the 36th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 13th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County. It’s also the eighth in the City of Los Angeles.

Update: The victim has been identified as 28-year old Duarte resident Oscar Gaytan.

Update 2: Gayton’s family reports he had attended a game at Dodger Stadium, and was likely headed to the nearby Metro station to catch a train home when he was attacked.

Police are looking for a suspect described only as a man in his 30s. 

A crowdfunding page to help pay funeral expenses for the professional nurse has raised slightly less than $10,000 of the $25,000 goal. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Oscar Gaytan and his loved ones.

Russian soldier faces war crimes trial for killing bike rider, drivers behaving badly, and Metro releases draft 405 corridor plan

Ukraine announced plans to try a 21-year old Russian soldier for war crimes, for killing a 62-year old civilian walking his bicycle just feet from his home.

He reportedly was ordered to shoot the man as a group of Russian soldiers were fleeing a Ukrainian counterattack in a commandeered car during the first days of the war, so the victim couldn’t report their location to Ukrainian forces.

According to The Washington Post,

The prosecutor’s office said that Ukrainian investigators collected evidence of the soldier’s involvement, finding him “in violation of the laws and customs of war combined with premeditated murder,” and that the crime can carry a penalty of 10 to 15 years or life in prison. The statement did not provide details on the nature of the evidence or how the Russian soldier ended up in Ukrainian custody.

He is the first Russian soldier to be charged with a war crime while in Ukrainian custody, though ten soldiers were charged in absentia last month for the torture and mutilation of civilians in Bucha.

Ukraine reports evidence of more than 10,000 alleged war crimes committed by Russian forces, with 5,000 open investigations.

He faces 10 to 15 years if he’s convicted.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Photo by Matti from Pexels

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On a related subject, our anonymous courtroom correspondent writes in with a few observations, including turning heads with her two-wheeled support of the country under attack by Russian forces.

I’ve been flying a little (12″x18″) Ukrainian flag on my rear bike basket for a couple months now but constantly reconsider because whoo boy does it attract the honking.

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Remember Santa Barbara’s intention to designate In-N-Out a nuisance due to the traffic it attracts? Santa Ana just plans it into the street. Those pesky cyclists are never in the way of hungry drivers turning, or just waiting on the roadway to turn!

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In the latest edition of Motorists Behaving Badly:

Last week at the Pasadena DMV, a driver hit a DMV examiner, and then (sigh) backed up into a parked vehicle. This was an already licensed motorist, btw. Somehow.

Meanwhile, in Orange County the same night, a speeding driver smashed into a house on Newport Blvd…and then caught fire. The road road here has the CMUTC’s minimum-width bike lanes, and a (maximum) speed limit of 50mph. County officials remain confused as to how a collision possibly could’ve happened.

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Metro is looking for public comments on their draft comprehensive multimodal corridor plan for LA County’s I-405 Corridor 

Meanwhile, Streets For All is calling for everyone to tell Metro to stop wasting billions on freeway widening projects that only create more induced demand.

The agency’s new draft budget increases freeway spending 33%, on top of last years massive 80% boost.

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Michael Wagner, author of CLR Effect, corrects yesterday’s item saying there’s no Ride of Silence planned for Los Angeles County this Wednesday.

He notes that The Cycling Connection in Rancho Cucamonga will host a Ride of Silence as part of the international movement to honor fallen bike riders and other victims of traffic violent.

There will also be a daytime Ride of Silence on Saturday at the Rose Bowl.

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As former New York DOT Commissioner Janet Sadik-Khan wrote, first they’ll fight it, then they’ll fight to keep it.

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Grist offers an explainer on the deadly 85th Percentile Law, using LA’s deadly Zelzah Ave as a case in point.

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No argument here.

Although we may never know how that feels.

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

No bias here. Britain’s Express newspaper asked its readers if “cyclists should own the road or should drivers have priority?” And got exactly the responses you’d expect by wording it that way.

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Local

The Los Angeles Times continued their string of endorsements of progressive candidates for city council, recommending civil rights attorney Erin Darling to replace outgoing Mike Bonin in the Westside’s CD11. Darling also earned my endorsement a few weeks ago for his support of safe, livable streets.

LAist offers a detailed voters guide to the upcoming June primary election.

Join a family friendly ride with Walk Bike Glendale and Glendale Mayor Ardy Kassakhian this Saturday.

 

State 

Berkeley approves a new mile-long protected bike lane on Hopkins Street, despite the usual panic over removing parking spaces.

San Francisco moves to ban racially biased pretext traffic stops, preventing police from stopping people for minor traffic infractions such as broken tail lights, jaywalking, or tinted windows.

Streetsblog talks with the new executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.

 

National

Cycling Weekly profiles the young women who will ride this year’s 950-mile Remember the Removal Bike Ride, retracing the route taken by their Cherokee ancestors during the infamous Trail of Tears; over a quarter of the 16,000 members of the Cherokee Nation ordered out of their ancestral lands by the US government died of starvation, disease or exposure during the forced march.

L’Étape by Tour de France promises to bring the full Tour experience to Las Vegas next year, with a new 25 mile, 50 mile and 75 mile fondo through Sin City. But will there be someone dressed as the devil to chase you?

Hats off to Salt Lake City, where the city council voted unanimously that 20 is plenty, reducing speeds on 70% of the city’s streets to 20 mph. Meanwhile, the city is forming a task force to fight road rage, and boosting spending on traffic safety to combat a jump in pedestrian deaths.

Aspen, Colorado is moving towards requiring ebike renters to watch a bike safety video before they’re allowed on local trails.

One more example of keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late. A Davenport, Iowa man was sentenced to a whopping 55 years behind bars for the drunken hit-and-run death of a man riding a bicycle, after driving aggressively and running multiple red lights; it was his third DUI offense. Although even I think that sentence might be just a tad extreme.

A Rhode Island op-ed says it’s both the best and worst of times for the state’s bicyclists, as they mark Bike Month while a hostile DOT has stalled any progress.

Authorities in New Jersey’s Hudson County are standing in the way of the area’s first bike lane, preferring parking over the safety of people on bicycles.

 

International

Cyclist explains the mechanics that make an ebike tick. Meanwhile, a writer for the magazine says she crashed her bike for the first time in years, and learned…nothing.

Kingston, Ontario voted to eliminate parking minimums, replacing them with maximum limits on parking spaces for commercial and residential buildings, as well as requiring parking for bicycles, e-scooters and shared vehicles.

A Toronto website offers tips on how to maximize your speed crossing the city on two wheels.

A former Antigua national cycling champ is fighting for his life after a driver claims he was at the wheel when he ran down four bicyclists training for a weekend race, which was cancelled in the wake of the crash; another victim says the collision has left him mentally struggling.

Evidently they know something we don’t. As American road deaths climb to levels rivaling the bad old days, European traffic fatalities continue to drop, declining 17% in 2020 to continue a nearly 20-year trend.

 

Competitive Cycling

Frenchman Arnaud Démare won a mass sprint for the finish line in Wednesday’s 5th stage of the Giro, while 2nd place finisher Fernando Gaviria risked a sponsorship blowup by blaming his “shit” bike for the loss.

 

Finally…

We might have to deal with angry LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to confront rogue bulls on the loose. Now you, too, can own a home just off the Marvin Braude bike trail in Santa Monica for a mere 13 million bucks.

And let’s finish today with a peppy ode to new bike day. Which may be my new favorite song for the summer.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Plea deal in drunken Oxnard hit-and-run that killed 16-year old boy, and crowdfund for fallen Rapha ride leader tops goal

Once again, a killer driver has been allowed to plead to reduced charges.

And reduced jail time.

Thirty-nine-year old Oxnard resident Julio Cesar Sanchez pled guilty to vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence in the drunken hit-and-run death of 16-year old Andres Hernandez, as the Port Hueneme boy was riding in Oxnard last September.

Sanchez also admitted to special allegations of fleeing the scene and committing a serious felony involving great violence.

He was sentence to nine years, after prosecutors dropped charges of second degree murder and gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated with prior DUI convictions, which could have resulted in a sentence of 15 years to life.

Instead, he’ll likely spend less than half his nine-year sentence behind bars.

Let’s at least hope he’s never allowed to drive again.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels

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A fundraiser to help defray funeral expenses for Rapha ride leader John Hermoso has reached over $12,900 in just one week, topping the $10,000 goal.

Hermoso, better known as Panduh in the cycling community, was killed in a head-on collision while riding the Santa Clara Truck Trail near Santa Clarita 12 days ago.

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Here’s your reminder to turn out for the LA City Council Budget and Finance Committee meeting on Friday to demand more funding for active transportation and Vision Zero in the coming fiscal year.

Unfortunately, the city council isn’t taking phone-in comments anymore following the reopening of City Hall, despite rising Covid rates. So you’ll have to show up in person, or email members of the committee in advance of the Friday afternoon meeting.

And if you have any question what difference more funding could make, just take a look at the photo in the tweet below.

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Your periodic reminder that this is what we could have in Los Angeles, where the terrain and weather are more inviting than London.

And London commutes didn’t look like this, either, until the city built out a network of bicycle superhighways just a few years ago.

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The annual Ride of Silence to remember the victims of traffic violence is scheduled for next Wednesday.

Unfortunately, there are no rides currently listed with the national registry in Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego or San Bernardino Counties for the day of the event.

However, the Pasadena Ride of Silence will return to the Rose Bowl as a daytime event on Saturday, May 21st.

Let’s hope more people will step up to host rides in Southern California over the next week. Because we really need to send a message this year.

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I’d watch it.

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Somehow, I think it will take just a little more than an illegible sign.

But maybe that’s just me.

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How to tell someone played hooky from physics class.

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

No bias here. A London man is roundly criticized for the crime of riding a Penny Farthing in traffic, while politely waving a driver to turn in front of him — then nearly getting hit when a second driver tries to do it, too.

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

Bizarre story from Las Vegas, where a man faces murder charges for pepper spraying another man, then stabbing him to death, after accusing the victim of damaging his bike “with the help of a ‘hacker’ from Indiana.”

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Local

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton digs deep into Metro’s proposed budget for the 2023 fiscal year, which calls for a 27.2% increase in active transportation spending. Although the $80 active transportation budget is dwarfed by the agency’s proposed $634 million in highway spending, a 35% increase over this year.

Pasadena is celebrating an abbreviated bike month, condensing it down to just the last 19 days of the month.

 

State 

More information on the cryptically described hit-and-run we mentioned yesterday in San Diego’s Ocean Beach neighborhood, which left the bike-riding victim with major injuries; police are looking for a newer model white 4-door crossover-style SUV with silver alloy wheels, and probable damage to the right front, with a license plate beginning with 8YN. There’s a $1,000 reward for information in the caseThanks to Keith Johnson for the heads-up.

Morgan Hill-based Specialized is developing a new e-cargo bike sub-brand extension called Globe, specifically designed to replace car trips, while priced below the company’s Turbo ebike line.

 

National

Bicycling offers their picks for the best road bike wheels to “improve your speed, enhance you ride quality, and take you farther than ever.” As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

Denver area residents reached out to replace the ebike a Vietnam war vet relied on as his only form of transportation, after it was stolen from a Walmart bike rack.

She gets it. The executive director of Chicago’s Active Transportation Alliance calls out the city’s failure to improve a deadly intersection, saying no one should die just because they use a bike to get around.

Pittsburgh is getting a new ebike-based bikeshare system.

New York’s new $4 million traffic safety campaign telling drivers to slow down seems to be having the opposite effect, with a dozen people killed in crashes in the first week.

 

International

Off.Road.cc delivers a primer on frame geometry, while Cycling Weekly discusses frame materials, suggesting metal frames offer benefits over carbon fiber.

A Calgary, Alberta couple dug up a metal 1935 bike license while working in their garden. Note that it wraps around the frame, and would be virtually invisible to anyone at a distance, for all those who insist bicycles should a license to force scofflaw riders to behave.

A Toronto paper demonstrates the right way to write a headline, reporting that a “Cyclist was struck by a driver while walking his bike across the street.” My only quibble is that the victim is a person, not a cyclist. But still.

The US military garrison in Wiesbaden, Germany offers advice on how to ride in the country.

 

Competitive Cycling

Lennard Kämna took Tuesday’s Mt. Etna stage of the Giro in a breakaway; the 23-year old German pro is making a successful comeback after last season was derailed by physical and mental health problems.

Columbia’s Miguel Ángel López withdrew from the Giro after getting dropped in the first miles of Tuesday’s fourth stage; he reportedly suffers a left hip injury that failed to bounce back on Monday’s rest day.

Dutch star Mathieu van der Poel is taking a sabbatical from mountain biking to focus exclusively on road racing this year, before returning to the sport for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Colorado’s annual Durango to Silverton Iron Horse Challenge celebrates its 50th year at the end of this month.

 

Finally…

Apparently, London doesn’t have the only bike-riding cat. Now you, too, can be the proud owner of a Giro d’Italia NFT.

And this one hits right where I live, at the intersection of bikes and corgis.

But evidently, they’re not the only canine bike racing fans.

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Not guilty plea in DUI hit-and-run death of Andrew Jelmert in Griffith Park, and LA Times endorses Cedillo opponent in CD1

No surprise here.

Thirty-seven-year old Jairo Martinez pled not guilty for the alleged drunken, hit-and-run death of Andrew Jelmert in Griffith Park last month.

Martinez was charged with felony counts of murder and hit-and-run driving resulting in death, as well as a misdemeanor charge of driving with a suspended or revoked license following a previous DUI conviction.

He reportedly ran away on foot after killing Jelmert, who was participating in a training ride for next month’s 545-mile AIDS/LifeCycle Ride.

Martinez remains behind bars on $2 million bail.

The murder count stems from receiving a Watson notice after his previous DUI conviction, which states that he could be charged with murder if he kills someone while driving drunk anytime in the future.

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There might be hope for LA’s 1st Council District after all.

Current CD1 Councilmember “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo has apparently made it his life’s work to throttle traffic safety projects that pose the slightest risk of inconveniencing motorists or annoying local business owners.

Like the fully funded and shovel-ready lane reduction on deadly North Figueroa he halted as one of his first acts upon taking office, after holding a series of sham public meetings with predetermined outcomes. And despite vowing to support the project when he was begging for our votes.

An act he followed up by actively blocking bike lanes in the district he runs like a fiefdom, going so far as trying — and thankfully, failing — to have every bike lane in CD1 removed from the city’s mobility plan.

Yesterday, though, the Los Angeles Times took the rare step of endorsing the opponent of a sitting councilmember, selecting progressive policy advocate and community organizer Eunisses Hernandez over Cedillo.

Here’s the salient part of the endorsement for our purposes.

The council member (Cedillo) has also been a barrier to building bike infrastructure and street projects designed to make it safer and easier for people to travel without a car. Council District 1 has some of L.A.’s most deadly streets, yet he voted against the city’s Mobility Plan to make the car-dominated streets safer and more inviting for pedestrians, bicyclists and transit. He blocked bike lanes, including directing city staff to remove bike lanes from the widened Spring Street bridge.

Hernandez, on the other hand, has made transportation and street safety top priorities within her larger environmental justice and climate change agenda. She said she would launch community reviews of the most dangerous intersections, and advocate for bike lanes, bus benches and shelters, redesigned streets and pedestrian plazas, so it’s easier for people to get around without cars.

Cedillo was in serious danger of losing last time around when the community rallied around challenger Josef Bray-Ali — until Cedillo’s campaign leaked a handful of intemperate, ill-advised and offensive comments Bray-Ali had posted to various websites.

It will be interesting to see what Cedillo comes up with this time to attack his opponent. Let’s hope Hernandez has a few less skeletons in her closest.

Because people in CD1 are dying for a less regressive representative.

Too often, literally.

………

A KABC-7 remote broadcast captures an attempted bike theft in the background on live TV.

I love LA! Live ABC7 story about Chappelle; watch the background. from LosAngeles

………

Yet another reminder to register your bike today.

And yes, it’s free, for life.

………

Bicycles. Good as gold for more than 125 years.

………

A partially paralyzed filmmaker offers a short video calling for greater trail access for e-mountain bikes.

………

Okay, I’m impressed.

Even if it would be easier to just pick it up and walk up.

………

Local

Vice talks with Silver Lake resident Eric Brightwell, who has been living carfree in Los Angeles ever since his broke down 11 years ago, leading to the unexpected discovery that he doesn’t need one here.

Metro will hold a public meeting on the 18th to discuss the agency’s proposed budget for the next fiscal year, which funds a return to pre-pandemic levels of service.

A Santa Clarita kid was lucky to escape without injuries when a hit-and-run driver ran him down as he rode his bike in a parking lot. Although the local paper seems to have missed that part about a bike in their own story. Thanks to Joe Linton for the heads-up.

 

State 

Seal Beach police announced a crackdown on drivers who threaten the safety of bike riders and pedestrians ths month through speeding, failing to yield to pedestrians or bicyclists, illegal turns and running red lights or stop signs. Although nothing says they won’t ticket you for the same violations, so ride to the letter of the law while you’re in the city.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A man was killed in Encinitas when he got out of his car to pick a flower on the other side of the road, and was stuck by another driver.

Seriously? A San Diego TV station says someone was taken to the hospital following a collision between a driver and a bike rider, but they aren’t sure which one was injured. Yet somehow, the Union-Tribune was able to figure it out.

Katy Perry is still one of us, going for a Mother’s Day bike ride on the beach somewhere in California with her 20-month old daughter and fiancé Orlando Bloom.

 

National

Planning Magazine writes in praise of the humble sidewalk, calling it the best infrastructure investment communities can make.

Money Inc. considers the most important things to wear mountain bikingI’d say pants, but that’s just me.

A Mt. Hood ski area is banning bikes this summer, after paying out a $10.5 million settlement when a mountain biker was paralyzed hitting a signpost placed directly next to a double black-diamond trail.

Denver bike riders are putting up signs around the city to remember the victims of traffic violence, and remind drivers of the risk they pose to others on the road around them.

Speaking of Denver, the city’s recently enacted, first-in-the-nation ebike rebate program is already driving an increase in ebike sales at local bike shops.

Frustrated with the city’s inaction, a small group of Chicago bike riders conducted their own DIY traffic study at an intersection where a bike rider was killed, catching drivers running red lights and driving at pedestrians in the crosswalk, as well as threatening the study volunteers.

A Pittsburgh driver pled guilty to ten charges, including vehicular homicide and DUI, for killing a man riding a bike while the driver was high on heroin.

Once again, a faulty ebike battery has torched a bike shop, this time in New York.

Writing for New York Streetsblog, a 20-year transportation engineer calls for responsive countermeasures to curb traffic violence, and “reach the very small percentage of dangerous drivers who can’t be stopped otherwise.” Although most of us might call it a large percentage.

A Delaware beach town installs sharrows in a misguided attempt to protect bicyclists, apparently unaware that studies show sharrows are worse than nothing. Although they do help drivers improve their aim at us.

WaPo offers an introduction to gravel biking.

 

International

Nova Scotia gets its first bicycle traffic signal, which halts right turning traffic so bikes can cross the intersection.

A delivery rider from Brazil is on trial for killing a 16-year old boy in Dublin, Ireland, in a confrontation with another man over the theft of a second delivery rider’s bicycle. And yes, that’s every bit as confusing as it sounds.

A British paper talks with the motorists who helped bring a couple of road racing drivers to justice for killing a man riding a bicycle, who had the misfortune of being in their way.

 

Competitive Cycling

British pro Tom Pidcock won Sunday’s mountain bike World Cup race in Albstadt, Germany by a wheelie big margin, popping a wheel as he crossed the finish line. Sorry.

  

Finally…

Live out your bike mechanic dreams, without leaving your sofa. When you can’t decide whether to ride a bike or a kick scooter.

And maybe the Dutch one hit wonders were a lot cooler than we thought.

Correction: Two-hit wonders. Thanks to Opus for the catch.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Murder & DUI charges in Griffith Park crash, petition to ban cars from park, and NCs sign on to Healthy Streets LA

Make that murder, instead.

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that the charges against Jairo Martinez, the man arrested for killing 77-year old AIDS/LifeCycle rider Andrew Jelmert in Griffith Park on Saturday, have been upgraded to murder, rather than vehicular homicide.

The paper hints at the reason here.

In addition to murder, prosecutors charged Martinez, 37, with fatal hit-and-run and driving with a suspended or revoked license after being convicted of driving under the influence. He was scheduled to appear in court Wednesday.

If Martinez was convicted of DUI in California, he would have been required to sign a Watson notice acknowledging that he could be charged with murder if he killed someone while driving under the influence anytime in the future.

And kill someone, he did.

Allegedly.

It’s clear from the charges that losing his license didn’t stop Martinez from driving, or from getting behind the wheel after drinking.

California has to do more to keep people like him from continuing to drive after losing their license. Let alone continuing to drive drunk.

Interlock devices that check a driver’s blood alcohol level before the ignition will engage is a start.

But it would be far more effective to impound a driver’s car for the full duration of any drivers license suspension. Or force them to sell their car if their license is revoked.

Because as the charges against Martinez demonstrate, just taking away someone’s license doesn’t stop them from driving.

Or from killing someone.

………

Meanwhile, traffic safety nonprofit SAFE, or Streets Are For Everyone, has started a petition to begin phasing out cars from Griffith Park, with the exception of park rangers and shuttle buses.

Griffith Park is the largest park in the United States which still allows private cars. It is a haven for the community and a popular destination for cyclists, runners, walkers, and families with young children – getting out for some physical activity and get-togethers. Yet the few bike lanes that exist do not have barriers separating riders from cars. The posted speed limit is 25 MPH, but many drivers go 40 – 60 MPH using Griffith Park as a way to avoid the crowded 5 freeway.

And yes, I signed it. I hope you will, too.

………

Twenty-eight down, 71 to go, as over a quarter of Los Angeles’ neighborhood councils have signed on to the Healthy Streets LA ballot measure, which would require the city to build out the already approve mobility plan as streets get resurfaced.

………

The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition is hosting the second in their series of Bike Salons tonight.

The LACBC is also looking for volunteers as they resume the Operation Firefly light giveaway program.

The other news isn’t so welcome, as the organization has cancelled their formerly annual River Ride for the third consecutive year, while hinting at an event later this year to “celebrate the joy of bicycling.”

………

As we mentioned yesterday, the Bike League — aka the League of American Bicyclists — is out with their latest ranking of the country’s most bike-friendly states.

Massachusetts overtook Washington for the top spot for the first time, while California came in at a seemingly overly optimistic 4th. New York finished 13th in the ranking, although the state got an F grade in the Traffic Laws and Practices category.

And lowly Wyoming claimed the lanterne rouge as the nation’s most bike-unfriendly state.

………

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

A Charlotte NC Uber and Lyft driver is out of work after a “gang” of teenage bike riders chased him down and beat him up, stealing his phone, wallet, car keys and car, after he got out of his car when he “clipped” one of the wheelie-popping riders at a red light.

A salesperson at a Belgian car dealership dumped a bucket of water onto a bike rider who spit on the featured cars as he rode by every day.

………

Local

The Los Angeles Times has followed my lead, and endorsed Kenneth Mejia for city controller, with an honorable mention for longtime city budget analyst and financial officer Stephanie Clements; termed-out career politician Paul Koretz, not so much.

Pasadena is hosting a community meeting next Thursday to discuss the proposed Craig Avenue Greenway, a 1.1-mile bicycle boulevard between Orange Grove Boulevard to Del Mar Boulevard.

Whittier is planning to add a nearly three-mile extension to the popular 4.6-mile Greenway Trail rail-to-trail path.

 

State 

Calbike invites you to take part in this year’s Climate Ride fundraiser stage ride.

No bias here. A San Diego TV station actually says California’s requirement that carmakers replace cars that run on gas with other cars that run on batteries is a prime example of the mythical war on cars.

San Diego sheriff’s deputies are on the lookout for a van driver who followed a 16-year old boy on his bike, and tried to lure him inside the van.

Caltrans District 8 is asking for public input on a draft Active Transportation Plan for the High Desert and the Inland Empire area.

After a Hayward girl’s stolen bike was found stripped and trashed, kindhearted sheriff’s deputies worked with a local bike shop to get it cleaned up and repaired before they returned it to her.

It’s open season on mountain bikers in the Oakland Hills, as gangs of thieves are robbing people for their bikes in a crime spree dating back to last year.

San Francisco Supervisor Matt Haney has won a seat in the California Assembly in special runoff election; Haney is credited with the rapid expansion of protected bike lanes in the city’s SoMa district.

 

National

Bicycling offers advice on how to extend the life of your bike tires. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

A Chicago bike rider won nearly $300,000 in damages after he was grievously injured when he struck the base of a broken bike lane bollard.

Boston’s Bikes Not Bombs organization is using bikes as a tool for social change.

They get it. A DC website says Vision Zero is meaningless unless we can get more drivers off the roads.

A longtime Florida bike shop was burned when an unattended ebike battery caught on fire while being charged, after they had sent the customer’s battery out to be rebuilt.

 

International

A Montreal website remembers the city’s Bicycle Bob, who fought to make bicycling seem like a normal urban activity, while encouraging the city to develop infrastructure necessary to support it.

The UK has seen a massive 40% jump in bike thefts in just the last three years.

Tossing a bike onto a London train track to watch it explode is not one of the recommended uses.

A British father calls for giving police the power to immediately suspend the license of drugged drivers, after his six-year old son was stuck by a driver who had already been stopped twice for DUI.

Current Santa Barbara resident and former spare heir Harry, Duke of Sussex, is reportedly “having a blast” riding his bike and whistling while attending the Invictus Games in the Netherlands.

Thank a massive volcano on a remote South Pacific island for the modern bike you ride.

 

Competitive Cycling

If you want to watch the oldest of the five Monuments here in the US this Sunday, you’ll need a subscription to the GCN+ streaming service; otherwise, you’re SOL for the 108th edition of Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

The Redlands Classic stage race is back after a two-year Covid-imposed absence, with a time trial course last used 26 years ago.

A former Tokyo Olympian offers an insiders view of the L39ion of Los Angeles training camp.

 

Finally…

Bike bridge, pedestrian path and coyote crossing. If you’re going to ride your bike naked on Easter morning, at least get a damn tan first.

And now you, too, can buy a bike for the same price I paid for my last car.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Murder charge for Riverside road rage attack, LA bike bridges to nowhere, and apparently I’m part of LA bike history

Before we get started, David Drexler reminds us that Sunday’s LA Marathon affords the perfect opportunity to ride through the streets of LA in relative comfort and safety. 

No word on whether the usual Marathon Crash Ride will take place before the race, though chances are people will show up for it anyway, officially sanctioned or not. 

But either way, major roads like Hollywood and Santa Monica blvds will be closed for hours because of the race, which will quiet nearby streets, as well. 

Photo by Sora Shimazaki from Pexels.

………

Thirty-two-year old Riverside resident Sergio Reynaldo Gutierrez has been ordered to stand trial for murder in the death of Benedicto Solanga, after allegedly running down Solanga intentionally as he rode his bike last July.

Gutierrez reportedly made a U-turn to run down Solanga as he was riding in the opposite direction, following what may have been a traffic dispute.

In other words, he’a accused of using his car as a weapon following a road rage dispute.

Gutierrez remains behind bars on $1 million bail.

Hopefully, he’ll be there a long damn time.

………

Not surprisingly, Curbed’s Alissa Walker offers the best take on the recent invitation-only opening of the Taylor Yard Bridge, in which people apparently more important than you or me were instructed to drive to the opening of a bridge for people walking or biking.

And people walking or biking were largely locked out.

There are three new car-free bridges on a widely used four-mile corridor of the L.A. River — one of the few places where it is a meandering naturalized channel not fully encased in a concrete chute — and this morning was a chance to honor all three at once. Standing before a sign that read “Bridging Communities” in the same bright orange as the bridge, elected officials from every level of government — city, county, and state — gave speech after speech about connection. California assemblymember Wendy Carillo cited the “walkable, livable green open space our communities need.” L.A. city councilmember Gil Cedillo called it “a win for everyone” that “brings neighborhoods together…”

…Instead, L.A.’s Taylor Yard Bridge just exposes the distance between the people who say they care about walking and biking in L.A. and the people who actually walk and bike in L.A. The ribbon-cutting invitation (which I did not receive) provided attendees with driving directions only. Meanwhile, people who arrived from the west that morning and actually came to the car-free bridge using car-free modes of transportation found themselves locked out, as the ceremony took place on the eastern landing. At the end of the event, after giving their speeches about the role of walking and biking connections in reducing traffic and smog, the elected officials each walked back to their SUVs and drove away.

It’s worth a few minutes of your time, as Walker succinctly illustrates the problem with riding a bike in the City of Angels, where people on bikes are second-class citizens.

And bridges for bikes don’t take you anywhere.

………

Evidently, I’m officially part of LA bike history.

Carfree writer and artist Eric Brightwell responds to the recent jump in gas prices with a detailed history of bicycling in Los Angeles, from the first dandy horses through bikes in popular culture, to the places you probably ride today and the clubs you may ride with.

And somehow finds it appropriate to include yours truly among the more recent developments.

Bicycle culture began to rebound in the 1990s and 2000s when there was a marked upsurge in bicycle advocacy and group-cycling culture. Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition was founded in 1998 by Joe Linton and Ron Milam. Critical Mass, a group cycling event, first launched in San Francisco in 1992, as “Commute Clot,” made its way to Los Angeles in or around 2001. Los Angeles Critical Mass is today the largest community bicycle ride in the US. In 2001 I bought my first Los Angeles bike, a 1972 Raleigh Sprite 27, from Lars Lehtonen, who around that time launched the bicycle event aggregator/calendar, Bike Boom. Wolfpack Hustle, a fast-paced ride, started in 2005. Midnight Ridazz, a late-night group bicycle ride, was launched in 2004. Ted Rogers started Biking in L.A. in 2008. You can also start or join a Bike Train.

2008? Has it really been that long?

No wonder I feel old.

It’s a surprisingly good read. And not just because Brightwell demonstrated the exceptional good taste to give this site a brief shoutout.

His “brief history” is anything but. It’s remarkably detailed yet still concise, and always entertaining.

But his relatively brief into should be mandatory reading for anyone who bikes or drives. Or gets around any other way, for that matter.

…As I write this I brace myself for rage from motorists. And while I sympathize with poor and working class people for whom gassing up truly is painful, so too is riding a bus bogged down in traffic or being hit by a car and when does a motorist every offer a cyclists or bus rider anything other than derision, a middle finger, and a blast from the horn? Cyclists, walkers, and mass transit riders have thicker skin, though — and if they’re car-free, save them an average of $11,000 a year in depreciation, maintenance, gas, repairs, parking tickets, registration renewal, and especially, paid parking that just may be the difference between having to live in a far-flung, car-dependant suburb and a dense, walkable, transitable, and bikeable communities in which a car is not only unnecessary but a burden.

So go ahead. Give it a read.

But give yourself a little time, because there’s a lot to digest here.

Thanks to E/Expo Line Ledger for the heads-up. 

………

Calbike offers a roundup of all the bike-friendly bills that have been introduced in the new legislative session.

Much of it has a back to the future feel, with Assembly members reintroducing a series of bills previously vetoed by Gov. Newsom, with minor changes in hopes of getting them past his veto pen. They include bills to allow bike riders to treat stop signs as yields, legalize safely crossing the street mid-block, and fund connected bicycle networks.

Another measure would permanently exempt bike lanes, and other projects that don’t add motor vehicle capacity, from environmental review.

Additional proposals would require cities to include significant bicycle, pedestrian and traffic calming elements in their general plans, and change the vehicle code to require drivers to change lanes to pass someone on a bicycle.

……….

That feeling when you discover a bike/ped bridge over a car canyon that makes your commute that much easier.

………

A little girl lies down on the job to giver her little sister a boost to learn how to ride a bike.

………

San Diego bicyclists will ride next Saturday to show their support for the people of Ukraine, who more than deserve it.

Thanks to Robert Leone for the tip.

………

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

Life is cheap in the UK, where a hit-and-run driver got just 22 months for killing a man riding a bicycle who he had just been drinking with at the local pub, then hid his van and lied to the police about it

………

Local

Make money while you help build a more livable Los Angeles. The Healthy Streets LA ballot measure is now hiring people to collect signatures to get it on the ballot; it would require the city to build out its already-approved mobility plan as streets get resurfaced.

A former LA city planner calls for switching to sustainable transportation to put oil-funded autocrats out of business.

Authorities have identified the 28-year old woman who was found dead along a beach bike path in Long Beach, however, no cause of death has been released yet.

 

State 

A San Diego ebike rider questions whether bad drivers and poorly maintained streets make the city too dangerous for people on bicycles.

San Diego is celebrating the grand opening of the new Georgia – Meade Bikeway tomorrow morning. Thanks again to Robert Leone.

Tragic news from Mountain View, where a 13-year old middle school student was killed by a truck driver while riding to school; needless to say, police virtually exonerated the driver, saying the driver wasn’t speeding or under the influence, even though the crash is still under investigation.

No surprise here, as Tesla fired the whistleblower who released video of one of their cars nearly running over a bike rider while in autopilot mode; Streetsblog’s Roger Rudick says that proves plastic doesn’t offer enough protection to keep people on bicycles safe.

 

National

Triathlete explains the difference between road and triple bikes.

Henderson, Nevada is opening the final link in a 12-mile rail-to-trail conversion named after the late Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid; the pathway connects to a 220-mile trail system.

A Minnesota man faces charges for punching a passing bike rider and robbing him while the victim was unconscious.

Even in the oil fields of Louisiana, bike use is booming as gas prices continue to rise. Bike sales are up in Cleveland, too.

I want to be like him when I grow up. Despite suffering from diabetes, a 79-year old Hemingway lookalike still rides his bike 15 miles every day through his Florida neighborhood, after cutting back from 20 to 25 miles a day when he turned 75. Although I’ll pass on the Papa look, thank you.

Friends of a legally blind Florida man launched a crowdfunding campaign to buy him a new bike, after his was stolen when he chained it to a short post outside a Walmart; his poor eyesore kept him from seeing that a thief could just slide the chain off. The campaign has raised over $3,700 of the $5,000 goal.

The bridge tender who was operating a Florida drawbridge when a 79-year old woman fell off after it opened while she was walking her bike across the span has been arrested on a charge of manslaughter by culpable negligence.

 

International

Audi is partnering with Qualcomm and the maker of the Spoke app to develop a cellular vehicle-to-everything system that would alert drivers to the presence of bicycles. Presumably if you have the app installed and open.

Britain’s Parliament discussed the need to improve bike safety, following the deaths of two people riding bikes in Oxford in recent weeks. Somehow, it’s hard to picture Congress responding like that, even with nearly 850 deaths in the US.

Scary footage as a Welsh bike rider barely avoids getting crushed when a half-ton bale of hay falls off a passing truck.

Most bicycle companies are following the lead of other international corporations in pulling out of Russia; notable exceptions include French retailer Decathlon and German manufacturer Bosch.

 

Competitive Cycling

Outside offers an insiders look at racing with the L39ion of Los Angeles team at Arizona’s Valley of the Sun.

Someone stole 12 racing bikes from the Mauritian National Team, just one day before they were due in Egypt for today’s All African Championships.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to steal an ebike, maybe put some clothes on first. Or even if you’re riding your own bike. Repeat after me — if you’re riding your bike with an outstanding warrant and nearly four ounces of meth, stop for the damn stop sign, already.

And that feeling when not knowing your front from your back leaves you feeling deflated.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Roadkill Gil supports bikes off the road, Metro teaches group rides, and always pay cash before you kill someone

One quick note before we get started. 

I’m scheduled to have arm and hand surgery at the end of the month. 

As you may recall, I had surgery on the right side last year, and was down for about 10 days before I was able to get back to work, however, that was a more extensive surgery than we’re expecting this time. 

So I’m not sure how long I’ll be out; hopefully, it will only be a few days. 

But if you’ve been thinking about writing a guest post, this would be a great time to send something to me. 

Standard rules apply. Write as much or as little as you want, about anything you want, as long as it’s about bicycling. Feel free to include photos (just send them separately from the text, please).

The only restrictions are to avoid insults and personal attacks, or being needlessly offensive. But I’m pretty damn hard to offend, so that should give you a lot of leeway.

No, this is not an invitation to SEO marketers, so no extraneous links unrelated to the topic at hand. 

And I’ll be the judge of what’s related. 

………

More proof Roadkill Gil supports bike infrastructure, as long as it doesn’t offend NIMBYs or inconvenience motorists just a tad.

LA’s future ambassador to India seems pretty darn pleased, too, apparently taking pride in the new bike/ped bridge.

Even though his Vision Zero program has failed, and his Green New Deal is already gathering dust.

………

Metro wants to teach you how to survive group rides.

https://twitter.com/MaverickMPA/status/1504279453605646338

………

If you’re going to murder a couple riding their bikes, remember to pay cash — and try not to be too memorable.

The man who allegedly stabbed a Daytona, Florida couple to death as they rode their bikes back home was caught when a waitress recognized his photo, and police tracked him down from the credit card he used.

Thirty-two-year old accused killer Jean Macean has been extradited from Orlando, where he was arrested.

……….

This is the kind of note you write when Costco places a bench blocking the bike racks.

If you’re more polite than I am, that is.

……….

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

It’s bad enough when a driver passes too close and ignores the painted bike lane, but even worse when it’s a cop.

………

Local

The Sheriff’s Department has declared zero tolerance for speeding and crosswalk violations on PCH in Malibu in the wake of several recent pedestrian deaths. Good luck with that. If they really want to slow drivers on LA killer highway, they need to remake PCH so the Malibu’s Main Street isn’t just a speedway for pass-through drivers.

Rancho Palos Verdes will lift a 28-year ban on bicycles and skating at three local parks, in a six-month trial starting at some yet-to-be-determined date; residents have complained that they don’t have safe place to teach their kids how to ride a bike.

 

State 

San Jose announces a $6 million plan to reduce last year’s near-record number of traffic deaths, which continue to rise even though it was one of the first US cities to adopt Vision Zero. Once again demonstrating that Vision Zero doesn’t work if you don’t actually do something.

San Francisco moved a step closer to permanently banning cars from JFK Drive in Golden Gate Park. Parks are for people, not cars.

Davis is working to reduce traffic congestion on the city’s Mace Boulevard, including installing a new protected intersection.

 

National

As Colorado expands its power transmission network with hundreds of miles of new power lines, the state’s bike advocates see a unique opportunity to build bike paths along the new power line routes.

Texas Monthly remembers the state’s own Mr. Rogers, who fixed bikes for all the neighborhood kids until his death at 93 years old in 2004, and says some of those bikes are still being ridden today.

A Michigan man faces a minimum of 25 year behind bars as a habitual offender after following a man on a bicycle in his car, then intentionally jumping a curb and swerving into him to steal his wallet.

Research shows more Tennessee drivers are obeying the state’s three-foot passing law, and passing bike riders at a safe distance.

Tampa, Florida is the latest city to adopt Vision Zero, in an effort to confront the city’s average of 44 traffic deaths each year.

It’s not just a SoCal problem. A Florida family wants answers after a 50-year old man was killed riding his bike home from work; his brother found his body after retracing his route a full two days after the crash that killed him.

 

International

Garmin has patented a new rear-view bike cam radar system, which automatically begins recording when it senses danger from behind.

Ouch. Someone broke into a shed on a Scottish property, and made off with five mountain bikes worth nearly $33,000.

After an English woman was confronted by a gang of young men while riding her bike home, she didn’t realize how close she came to being robbed — or worse — until she later watched an attacker lunge at her on her rear-facing bike cam.

Former Australian Olympic track cyclist Dean Woods brought mourners to tears by delivering his own pre-recorded eulogy at his funeral, after dying of lung cancer at 55.

 

Competitive Cycling

Mark Cavendish overcame a lingering cold to continue his winning ways from last year with a victory in the one-day Milano-Torino race.

Tragic news, as 28-year old Belgian cyclist Cedric Baekeland died of a heart attack while training in Spain.

 

Finally…

That feeling when Chick-fil-A becomes a traffic hazard. And when your pedal is no longer on speaking terms with the rest of your bike.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Gas rebate plan excludes non-drivers, arrest in Otay Mesa hit-and-run murder, and bike helmet blamed for Ukraine war

Let’s start with a look at the soaring price of gas in the Golden State.

With the state average now well over $5 a gallon — and approaching $7 in some areas — Governor Gavin Newsom is proposing a tax rebate to refund some of that pain at the pump.

The advantage of a rebate, rather than suspending the state gas tax, is that it won’t affect critical funding for road repair and improvements, according to Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon.

However, a rebate targeting only people who own motor vehicles will miss everyone who choses not to contribute to the problem, by riding transit, riding a bike or walking. Even though everyone pays higher gas prices in the form of climbing prices for food, and everything else that’s transported by truck.

Particularly when LA Metro just made drastic cuts in bus and train service.

A tweet from David Weiskopf offers the best suggestion, recommending that the rebate take the form of a general transportation credit, which can be applied to transit, bicycles, ebikes, bikeshare, electric vehicles or just “pissed away on gasoline.”

As he suggests, it would be interesting to see just what people actually choose. And getting people out of their cars would reduce some of the demand forcing prices up.

Although I want to see who people blame for high gas prices when oil companies start reporting record profits in a few months.

Meanwhile, blame once again falls on LA’s failed leadership, or the lack thereof.

Los Angeles has had a full decade to build out the city’s bike and mobility plans, which should have been 40% complete by now if city leaders plan on meeting their self-imposed deadline of 2035.

Instead, both plans are gathering dust in some dark corner of the city servers, instead of providing the safe, convenient alternatives to driving that Angelenos were promised a decade ago.

So if you or your loved ones feel like you don’t have any practical alternative to driving, despite the rising prices, you know who to thank.

Evidently trees are out to get us, too, with today’s photo of fallen tree limbs attacking the Metro Bike dock at Runyon Canyon. And a dog, too.

………

Maybe Octavio Mendoza will see justice, after all.

The 40-year old father was killed by a hit-and-run driver in Otay Mesa this past November, in an attack that police investigators believe was intentional.

Now 51-year-old Fernando Salazar faces a murder charge, after he was arrested for the killing while coming back into the country at the San Ysidro Port of Entry on Monday.

It’s not yet clear whether this was a random case of road rage, or if the men knew one another.

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Apparently, if Obama hadn’t worn a bike helmet, Ukraine might not be under attack today.

BoingBoing looks back to the good old days of 2014, when Fox News blamed the then-president for Putin’s invasion of Crimea and the Donbas by insisting his bike helmet made him look weak.

No, really.

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For some reason, I still can’t embed tweets on here, so we’ll have to settle for a few semi-decent descriptions.

First up, Dr. Grace Peng asks us to join her in requesting that the Redondo Beach Police not to lump mopeds and high-powered ebikes capable of traveling over 25 mph in with other bikes and ebikes, after a huge jump in bicycle citations due to bike riders exceeding the 25 mph speed limit on residential streets.

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A Denver bike owner got their stolen bicycle back when bike shop workers checked Bike Index when someone tried to sell it to them.

Yet another reminder to register your bike, for free.

Now.

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Really disappointing that we can’t embed this one, since it features a really cool short video of a 1956 handcycle, with the hand crank awkwardly mounted on the crossbar of a standard bicycle frame.

More modern handcycles are a tad more practical, however.

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

Continuing this week’s theme of dangerous drivers from across the pond, a British motorist deliberately swerved into a bike rider after shouting abuse for not riding in a bike lane.

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

Mountain View police are looking for a suspect who slapped a pair of women on the butt as he rode past them on his bike, while making suggestive comments. And for anyone unclear on the concept, that’s not flirting, it’s not a prank, and it’s definitely not funny. It’s sexual assault. Period.

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Local

Streetsblog officially endorsed the Healthy Streets LA initiative, which would require the city to build out the mobility plan when streets in the plan get resurfaced.

The Mid City West neighborhood council is hosting a CD5 virtual candidate forum at 7 pm tonight; click here for the zoom link.

Streets For All is hosting a mobility debate on March 28th with at least four of the candidates to replace the resigning Mike Bonin in CD11.

British TV star Michelle Keegan is one of us, taking a bike ride on Venice Beach with her husband.

Your next ride along the San Gabriel River Trail could be a lot more pleasant, after the US Army Corps of Engineers removed 128 tons of trash and debris from the riverbed.

 

State 

Someone stole a teenage boy’s ebike in a strong-arm robbery on a La Jolla bike path, shoving the victim off his bike and taking off with it; police are looking for multiple high school-aged kids, including the primary suspect who rode off on the victim’s bike wearing a full motorcycle helmet and moto goggles.

 

National

Cycling Tips‘ James Huang says the new line of carbon fiber ebikes from America’s only remaining Tour de France winner looks intriguing, but he has a lot of questions. Like why the website is short on photos and specs just four months out from the projected delivery date.

Wired talks with the woman who was behind the wheel, but allegedly watching videos on her phone, when a self-driving car prototype killed a bike-riding woman in Tempe, Arizona four years ago.

Seriously disappointing news from Denver, where my former LBS is going out of business after 51 years; Turin Bike Shop was a victim of rising rents and supply chain problems, as well as the owner’s pending retirement.

A Kansas City columnist reacts to news of a 60-something couple riding a tandem across the US by suggesting that too much togetherness means a “bicycle built for doom.” There’s no better test for the strength of any relationship than riding a tandem. Let alone across the country.

Texas officials are asking for the public’s help to rename and brand a more than 60-mile bike and pedestrian trail connecting Fort Worth and Dallas. How about the Better Than Anything Here In Southern California Trail.

Cambridge, Massachusetts will intentionally miss a deadline to build out quick-build separated bike lanes by May 1st, saying they need more time to engage local stakeholders. Evidently, they don’t understand the concept of “quick-build.” And somehow couldn’t manage to engage those stakeholders in the six years since a bike rider was killed there. 

A group of 25 people riding from Florida to Texas stopped in Hammond, Louisiana to help repair homes damaged in Hurricane Ida.

Police in Daytona, Florida are searching for a person of interest in the horrific murder of a married couple, whose throats were cut while they were out riding their bikes last weekend.

 

International

Momentum offers a beginners guide to learning to ride a bike after middle age.

Next City profiles World Bicycle Relief and their work to provide inexpensive, reliable transportation for thousands of people around the world every year, calling bicycles one of the cheapest and easiest ways to lift people out of poverty. They have the same effect in this country, too.

Someone called out Oxford, England for a pair of recent bicycling deaths, crossing out “Cycling City” on the city’s welcome sign and writing in “One month, two dead cyclists.”

The British government wisely rejected a call for bike riders to be required to use a bell when they ride, saying there are other ways foe people on bicycles to make their presence known.

After thieves stole $153,000 worth of bikes and frames from a family-owned Irish bike shop, the owner has been overwhelmed by the support from the local community.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling Tips examines the greatest rivalries in the modern women’s peloton.

In an all-too familiar story, the Colorado Classic women’s stage race is on life support, unless a sponsor steps up with $3 million to keep the race alive; otherwise, it will follow the late, lamented Tour of California, Tour of Utah, and the USA Pro Challenge into the “ever-growing graveyard of American pro cycling races.”

 

Finally…

Always use a coaster brake when riding at the beach, even if your bike doesn’t have one. Your next bike could have all-wheel drive, no hubs, a minimalist frame and wheels that run the full length of the bike.

And maybe there’s a loophole in the bicycle ban on LA’s Runyon Canyon.

Like just use one wheel instead of two.

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

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