Tag Archive for Santa Ana

Hit-and-run victim Virgilio Lemus Garcia died last month, 3 days after Santa Ana crash; 22nd fatal SoCal bike hit-and-run

Unfortunately, the press seldom follows up once the ambulance doors close. And it may take weeks before we find out what happened afterwards.

If ever.

That’s what happened with 60-year old Santa Ana resident Virgilio Lemus Garcia, after he was left lying in the street by a hit-and-run driver early in the morning on Sunday, October 13th.

According to KNBC-4, Santa Ana police responded to reports of a man with a bicycle lying in the street at 5:20 am, at the intersection of Main Street and Warner Avenue in Santa Ana.

According to a witness, Garcia was riding his bike on Warner Ave when he was run down by the driver of a blue Honda, who only stopped briefly before hitting the gas.

Other reports indicate Garcia was headed north on Main when he was struck by a driver going west on Warner.

He was hospitalized in grave condition with severe bleeding his brain and throughout his body.

Sadly, Garcia’s niece reported on Facebook the following Wednesday that he had passed away, and was buried last week.

Video from the scene shows his mangled mountain bike near the curb, and the same black cowboy hat he wore in photos lying in the street.

Police are looking for a mid-1990s dark blue Honda Civic sedan with likely front-end damage, including broken head lights and a possible shattered windshield.

They say alcohol may have played a role in the crash, but didn’t explain how.

Garcia death came a little more than two weeks before last week’s fatal Santa Ana hit-and-run, and roughly five and a half miles away.

Anyone with information is urged to call Santa Ana Police at 714/245-8208 or 714/245-8700.

This is at least the 65th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 11th that I’m aware of in Orange County.

Twenty-two of those deaths have been the result of hit-and-runs, including ten of the 21 bike riders killed since September 3rd.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Virgilio Lemus Garcia and all his loved ones.

Thanks to Bill Sellin for the heads-up, and his help in tracking down this story.

Santa Ana man killed by hit-and-run driver — ninth fatal SoCal bike hit-and-run in past two months

Enough!

Southern California bike riders are being left to die in the streets by heartless, murderous drivers at an ever increasing rate.

Nearly half of the twenty people who’ve died riding bicycles in the past two months have been killed by cowardly hit-and-run drivers, who refused to stop and render aid as required by law.

Or had the basic human decency to call for help, rather than leave another person suffering alone in the last moments of their life.

The latest hit-and-run victim lost his life early this morning in Santa Ana.

According to multiple sources, a man was found lying in the street next to a heavily damaged bicycle on the 300 block of Newhope Street near the Iglesia De La Comunidad chapel around three this morning.

KTLA-5 reports the victim, identified only as a 52-year old man, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The street has buffered bike lanes in both directions, though it’s not clear if the victim was riding in them. Police say alcohol played a factor, suggesting they believe he victim was under the influence, since the driver remains unknown.

There’s no description of the suspect vehicle, except that should have front-end damage.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Santa Ana Police Department at 714/245-8208 or 714/245-8200.

This is at least the 64 bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the tenth that I’m aware of in Orange County.

Twenty-one of those deaths have been the result of hit-and-runs, including nine of the 20 bike riders killed since September 3rd.

Update: The Orange County Coroner has identified the victim as 52-year old Santa Ana resident Daniel Martinez. 

Thanks to Bill Sellin for the heads-up.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Daniel Martinez and his loved ones.

 

Morning Links: More of same as Newsom vetos Complete Streets bill, and Santa Ana hit-and-run gravely injures bike rider

Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss.

Evidently, not much has changed with a new, more progressive governor in Sacramento.

Former Governor Jerry Brown became famous for obstructing bicycle safety bills, to the point that “Jerry Brown” became a pseudonym for a dangerously close pass after Brown vetoed two versions of a three-foot passing law before finally agreeing to the watered-down version we have today.

And yes, I may have had something to do with popularizing that term.

Yesterday, Brown’s understudy, Governor Gavin Newsom, followed in his footsteps by vetoing SB127, the California Complete Streets bill.

The bill would have simply codified what Caltrans has already promised to do — include Complete Streets provisions whenever a roadway under state control is resurfaced or receives a major makeover.

Which is the primary reason Newsom gave for vetoing it.

But anyone who’s followed Caltrans for any length of time knows they’re notorious for promising change, then continuing with the same deadly, auto-centric policies.

Newsom’s veto message says Caltrans is already committed to Compete Streets “where reasonable and feasible.”

Which is simply another of saying if it gets hard in anyway, or anyone complains, just forget it.

And we’re left with a few minor changes to add sidewalks or bike lanes here and there — the “low hanging fruit,” as LADOT described it.

Newsom also cited Caltrans’ brazen, and successful, attempt to sabotage the bill, despite their many pledges of support for Complete Streets. The agency cited an absurdly high projected cost for the measure, claiming it would cost the state an extra $1 billion a year.

Which works out to $4.5 million per mile of blacktop. Even though the average cost of installing painted bike lanes is less that $50,000 per mile.

Usually a lot less.

Meanwhile, the average cost of building sidewalks is just $5.20 per square foot. So a full mile of concrete sidewalk five feet wide works out to $137,280.

Add that to the bike lanes, and double it for both sides of the street, and you’re looking at less that $375,000 per mile.

Just a tad less than that $4.5 million.

Maybe they were planning on some very expensive crosswalks, and a shitload of Share The Road signs.

Or maybe they just didn’t want to finally be held to account.

So once again, people who choose not to drive, for any length of time and for any reason, are left holding the bag.

Along with the communities these roads pass through. And the earth they’re built on.

And once again, we’re left with a self-proclaimed climate governor, like LA’s ineffectual climate mayor, who’s willing to do whatever it takes to protect the environment and fight climate change.

As long as that doesn’t mean inconveniencing drivers in any way.

………

Yet another bike rider is barely clinging to life, thanks to yet another heartless coward behind the wheel.

KTLA-5 is reporting that a man was struck by a driver while riding his bicycle at Main Street and Warner Ave in Santa Ana early yesterday morning.

The driver fled the scene, leaving his or her victim lying in the street in “extremely grave condition” with a head injury.

No description was available for either the driver or the suspect vehicle. Although police somehow concluded that alcohol was believed to have played a role in the crash, but did not explain how.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Santa Ana Police Department’s Collision Investigation Unit at 714/245-8208.

It sounds like prayers or good thoughts for the victim are definitely in order.

………

Sad news from Mexico, where longtime pro mountain biker Jordie Lunn was killed while trail riding with friends.

If the name doesn’t mean anything to you, this spectacular stunt from his self produced video series probably will.

The 36-year old British Columbia native was riding a trail in Cabo San Lucas when he fell, suffering a fatal head injury.

He started racing BMX at 11 before switching to mountain bikes at 15, rising to become the second-ranked North American rider in the 2003 World Cup standings.

He also became the first rider to land a Cork 720 a few years later. Even if he misses it here.

………

It’s Firefly season again.

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This may be my new favorite song.

Then again, any song about a stolen bicycle, by a band featuring a woman on a tuba, can’t be all bad.

………

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

A San Francisco police officer is accused of lying under oath about beating the crap out of a bike rider, for the crime of riding a bike on the sidewalk.

After a close pass, a London driver tells a bike rider he “should have used the fucking bike lane.”

Sometimes the problem is just bald-faced bigotry directed to someone made more vulnerable by being on a bike. A British man intervened when a handful of teenagers surrounded a Jewish man, shouting anti-semitic slurs and threatening to take his bicycle. Seriously, what the hell is wrong with some people?

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

A Phoenix man faces charges for allegedly pulling a gun out of his waistband and shooting another man he accused of disrespecting him as he rode past on his bicycle; his bullet passed through the victim, and nearly struck a couple in the living room of their nearby home. Fortunately, the man he shot is expected to survive.

………

Local

A Burbank photographer recently completed his 17th ride down the California coast with the Arthritis Foundation’s California Coast Classic Bike Tour.

A man was fatally stabbed in South El Monte Friday evening after three men got out of a passing car, knocked him off his bike, and repeatedly stabbed him; the victim tried to get back on his bike and ride for help, but only made it another block.

 

State

Former motocross champ Mickey Diamond is in the ICU ward of an undisclosed Orange County hospital with a subdural brain bleed after apparently catching a knee on the handlebars of his time trial bicycle.

Over 10,000 people turned out for the 7th annual Open Streets event in Santa Cruz on Sunday.

Uber and Lyft rides could be subject to a small tax if a San Francisco ballot measure passes, with the funds going to public transit and street safety; the proposal got a quick endorsement from Streetsblog SF.

A Marin newspaper attacks a pilot project to put a barrier protected bike lane on the upper span of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge; the paper says the $20 million cost should have gone to better uses, and the space used to add a third demand-inducing motor vehicle lane across the bridge. However, the $20 million is a little more than half the cost paid to add a third traffic lane on the lower span last year.

 

National

A national transportation advocacy group calls for zeroing out funding for new roads and highways.

Uber Eats teams with the Governors Highway Safety Association to provide bicycle safety tips for their delivery riders. Which aren’t bad, for a change.

No, Grit Daily. Apple doesn’t make the Lumos Matrix bike helmet; they’re just selling it through the Apple Store.

An op-ed in Bicycle Retailer and Industry News looks back at the failure of the Interbike Trade Show, while expressing hope for something to take its place.

An Anchorage AK cop is facing an assault charge for punching a man outside his home, kicking him in the nuts and pepper spraying him, then taking him into custody on a false resisting arrest charge; the cop had earlier stopped him for riding without lights, then drove to his home with a ticket after the man was abusive, refused to show his ID and simply rode off. Thanks to Eric Grisiwold for the heads-up.

Good idea. Activating the bicycle sensor at a Portland traffic light will trigger a blue signal to let you know you were successful.

Ed Zink, a Durango CO bike shop owner and co-founder of the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic died of a heart attack on Friday; he was 71.

He gets it. A Missouri writer recounts the history of bicycling from the beginning to explain that most bicyclists are utilitarian riders who only need good infrastructure, and fair treatment from law enforcement to protect them from harassment and reckless drivers.

After Tulsa police recovered a disabled woman’s stolen three-wheeled bike in unusable condition, a pair of Good Samaritans gave her another one.

A Queens city official suggests that bike riders need to trade protected bike lanes for a ban on bikes in certain areas — then immediately tries to walk it back.

Things keep getting worse in New York City. A 65-year old man was killed when a driver plowed into his bicycle, after bike lanes were temporally removed for street resurfacing; local residents had been trying to get a red light on the street for years. This is the city’s 25th bicycling fatality, an increase of 250% compared to last year.

The New York Times says, despite predictions, the apocalypse didn’t come when cars were recently banned from a section of New York’s 14th Street.

Life is cheap in New York State, where authorities plea bargained a case of vehicular manslaughter in the drunken hit-and-run death of a bike rider down to a simple hit-and-run injury case; the driver could be out in as little as 18 months. Also good to know that driving at nearly three times the legal limit is just an effing misdemeanor in the Empire State.

The University of Alabama football team has sent a football and jersey signed by star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa to the family of a 12-year old boy who was recently shot and killed by another boy because he wouldn’t give his bicycle; his family plans to have him buried with both.

 

International

The director of safety policy and advocacy for Bird writes to a Toronto newspaper, arguing that shared e-scooters are as safe as bicycles.

An English bus driver was fined the equivalent of over $750 for passing a bike rider so close the rider could reach out and touch the bus, after the victim was accused of having a vendetta against the company — and told by a cop he should get a hummer, instead.

Just in time for California fire season, a British sports site rates the best bike masks to protect against pollution. They should also come in handy for your next crime spree or DIY urban activism campaign.

Over 10,000 people have been busted for distracted bicycling in the four months since a ban on cellphone use while riding went into effect in the Netherlands.

Haute couture cycling, anyone? Vogue says the best way to visit Italy’s Puglia region is by bicycle.

A Kiwi driver says two bicyclists crashed into his trailer while descending a hill at 30 mph because local officials forced him to remove the convex mirror he’d placed at the entrance to his driveway, which would have allowed him to see around the blind curve.

 

Competitive Cycling

Good question. A gaming site wants to know if digital dopers should get banned in the real world, too.

 

Finally…

Think of it as critical mass for zombies. Don’t ride around that tree, just ride through it.

And if you’re going to suffer a life-threatening heart attack, there are worse places than in front of three off-duty doctors participating in a charity ride.

 

Update: Man killed in collision while walking or riding bike on Santa Ana sidewalk

More evidence bike riders aren’t safe anywhere from reckless drivers.

Not even on a sidewalk.

And whether or not they’re actually riding their bikes.

According to the Orange County Register, a man was killed around 10:15 pm Tuesday when he was struck by a driver near the intersection of Fairview and Harvard Streets in Santa Ana.

The victim was walking or riding his bike on the west sidewalk along Fairview when man driving south on Fairview somehow jumped the curb and slammed into him.

The driver pulled into a nearby parking lot before calling 911 and running back to the scene.

The victim, who hasn’t been publicly identified, was taken to a Santa Ana hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

There’s no word on why the driver jumped the curb. It’s possible he may have been distracted or under the influence; it’s also possible there may have been another vehicle involved.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Santa Ana Police Department at 714/245-8200.

This is at least the 33rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth that I’m aware of in Orange County.

Update: The victim has been identified as 40-year old Perris resident Marcos Monzon

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Marcos Monzon and all his loved ones.

Man in his 60s killed in Santa Ana when he fell off his bike into the street

Sometimes, sidewalks only offer the illusion of safety.

Especially when it’s a narrow sidewalk along a busy, fast-moving street.

According to the Orange County Register, a man was killed when he fell off a Santa Ana sidewalk, and was struck by a passing car.

The victim, identified only as a Hispanic man in his 60s, was walking or riding his bike headed east, on the north sidewalk, under the railroad overpass on First Street near Standard Ave around 8:30 pm when he somehow fell in front of the driver’s car.

A Santa Ana police advisory reports that the driver immediately stopped, and several bystanders gathered around the victim in the street to protect him from traffic. He was taken to OC Global Trauma Center, where he passed away.

The sidewalk appears to narrow significantly under the overpass, which could have caused the man to fall.

The police statement said the driver was only traveling 25 mph at the time of the crash, which seems unlikely; the speed limit is 40 mph on that section of First, and most Southern California drivers routinely exceed posted speeds by 5 mph to 10 mph, or more.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Santa Ana Police Department’s Traffic Division at 714/245-8200.

This is at least the 25th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fourth that I’m aware of in Orange County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and all his loved ones.

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

………

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

Not distracted drivers. Or even poorly designed SUVs.

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

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

Sure.

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

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

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

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

We could spend hours picking this one apart.

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

And PBS should be ashamed of it.

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Local

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

 

State

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

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

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

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

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

 

National

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

International

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

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

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

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

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

 

Competitive Cycling

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The 805 Thousand Oaks Grand Prix rolls this weekend.

 

Finally…

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

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

Morning Links: Sharing the road with flying cars, and maybe bike riders aren’t scofflaws after all

They drive among us.

Maybe you somehow managed to miss the multitude of new stories over the weekend about the allegedly stoned driver who managed to plant his car on the second floor of a dental shop in Santa Ana.

No, really.

According to reports, the driver, who hasn’t been publicly identified, hit a center median with enough force to launch his car into the air, across three lanes of traffic, and embed it into the wall of the shop while still gaining altitude.

The inevitable question of how fast he had to be traveling to launch his car with such force is only partially answered by security camera footage.

As well as the view from an oncoming bus that was nearly taken out by the airborne ballistic automobile.

Lets hope he loses his license.

Permanently.

And it’s not just LA.

A Denver motorist literally drove into a Catholic church, finally stopping inside the vestibule with shards of stained glass scattered around.

But at least that one seems to have stuck to the ground.

Top photo from Orange County Fire Authority. Thanks to Erik Griswold and Wes Salmon for the heads-up.

………

Pot, meet kettle.

It’s long been common knowledge, among drivers at least, that people who ride bicycles are a bunch of reckless scofflaws who pay no attention to the law.

And anyone who has argued to the contrary, by pointing to studies showing most bike riders actually do stop for red lights and stop signs, or that countless drivers treat speed limits and stop signs as mere suggestions, is usually shouted down.

Often by people on both sides.

Never mind that even the most reckless bike rider is primarily a danger to him or herself, while a reckless driver is a danger to everyone around them.

That should have changed a few years ago, when a study from the University of Colorado showed that drivers and bike riders broke the law at nearly the same rate — 8% to 9% for drivers, and 7% to 8% for bicyclists.

As well as a follow-up study that showed when drivers broke the law, they did it for convenience, while people on bikes did it out of concern for their own safety.

Except that the both studies were greeted with crickets by the mainstream media.

Let alone the motoring public.

Now another study has shown virtually the same thing.

Writing for Outside, Peter Flax has taken a look at the recent Florida study that showed drivers broke the law at a slightly higher rate than the bike riders participating in the study.

In the end, the results indicated that cyclists were compliant with the law 88 percent of the time during the day and 87 percent of the time after dark. The same study determined that drivers who interacted with the study subjects complied with the law 85 percent of the time. In other words, drivers were slightly naughtier than the cyclists—even without measuring speeding or distracted driving.

In a conversation with three of the researchers who conducted the study, I asked if they had any insight into why the findings vary so significantly from public perceptions about scofflaw cyclist behavior. “Many drivers simply don’t know the rules that concern people on bikes,” says Cong Chen. “About how much space to give cyclists, for instance, or when riders should get the right of way.”

The study also offers suggestions on how to improve safety.

In any case, based on the study findings, the researchers offered a number of recommendations to help mitigate the frighteningly high rate of close calls. For infrastructure improvements, they suggested wider and protected bike lanes; reflective green markings on bike lanes; improved lighting on roadways that see significant bicycle traffic; and so-called “through lanes,” which reduce conflicts between bicyclists and turning vehicles at intersections by letting riders be safely positioned before cars turn. “Based on what we saw and measured, we recommend measures that promote separating more than sharing,” says Kourtellis. “We think creating buffers between cars and bikes is smart.”

But once again, don’t bother trying to find any mention of the study in the mainstream media.

Evidently, dispelling a widely held misperception too often used to demonize people on bicycles just isn’t news.

………

Speaking of demonizing bicyclists, one Aussie rider caught skitching — holding onto a moving vehicle to hitch a ride — is used to attack everyone who rides a bike for wanting “extra rights” on the road.

Never mind that most bicyclists haven’t done that, and never will.

And the only extra right we want is the right to ride a bike, and get home in one piece.

………

Local

LADOT laid down the new Hollywood-approved green paint on the protected bike lanes on Venice Blvd in Mar Vista over the weekend.

Speaking of Mar Vista, Bikerowave is hosting a bike swap on Sunday the 28th; coffee and donuts will be available if you get there early enough.

Los Angeles County’s outgoing Health Services director says he didn’t expect to fall in love with LA after moving here from San Francisco, but riding his bike to work from Hancock Park to DTLA certainly didn’t hurt. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Repaving started this past weekend on 6th Street between La Brea and Fairfax to prepare it for the half-measure safety improvements pushed through by Councilmember David Ryu, against the wishes of local residents who were fighting for a road diet. Any hope that the road diet might go through died following the fiasco in Playa del Rey, where recently installed road diets were yanked out after an outcry from motorists.

The latest Bike Talk podcast features John Russo and Karla Mendelson of Keep LA Moving, who successfully fought to have the Playa del Rey road diets removed, and want to halt any future lane reductions in the city.

Walk Eagle Rock shows that it’s possible to do more with less space on narrow streets.

The long discussed new section of the Arroyo Seco Bike Trail through South Pasadena is scheduled to open late next month.

The LA Times examines Chinese counterfeiting of small San Marino bikewear maker Team Dream.

Claremont is moving closer to a $16 million makeover of Foothill Blvd, including median divided bike lanes.

Long Beach surpasses its mobility goals for last year, with over 1.1 million bike riders and pedestrians passing a counter near the pier.

 

State

The co-founder of PayPal is one of us.

A Santa Ana cyclist was injured in an apparent gang shooting.

Tehachapi opens a new class 1 bike path along Tehachapi Blvd.

You never know what you might find while riding your bike. Like a boa constrictor with a broken jaw on the side of a Bay Area highway. The good news is, the snake has fully recovered.

The bike-friendly new Oakland bridge will be at least two years late and $6 million over budget.

Sad news from Paradise, where a bike rider was killed when she was rear-ended by one driver, then knocked into the path of another.

 

National

An ebike pioneer argues that an ebike charged using fossil fuels is actually greener than a regular bicycle when you consider the extra food needed to fuel the rider. Because everyone loads up on food before they ride to the corner market, right?

Meanwhile, TreeHugger says there’s an ebike revolution coming, and bikes and ebikes will eat cars.

An Oregon town posts a sign telling drivers not to text and drive, in honor of a 16-year old boy who was killed by a texting driver while riding his bike. Which will undoubtedly cause every driver to put down their phones. If they even bother to read it.

A Montana newspaper looks at the benefit bike tourism can have on small towns.

An Austin TX paper asks if an ordinary guy can ride 10,000 miles in two years. Considering that’s less than 100 miles a week, sure.

Kay Perry may be one of us, but she still takes Dallas to task over abandoned dockless bikeshare bikes.

The Chicago Tribune supports bringing bikeshare to the city’s transit deserts.

Bike registration rears its ugly head in Vermont, where a new bill would impose a $28 annual fee to ride a bicycle on public streets. Which is fine if your goal is to discourage bicycling, and keep people from taking ever down those unused bikes hanging in the garage.

An Op-Ed in the Philadelphia Enquirer considers how to make the city a safer place to ride a bike.

 

International

If you can’t ride your bike on a Manitoba highway because of the ice, get out your hockey skates. Thanks to Norm Bradwell for the link.

A Toronto Op-Ed says lowering speed limits throughout the city would save lives.

The Guardian offers a photo essay of a custom framebuilder in the UK.

Just a year after finishing a seven year, 43,000 mile around-the-world bike tour, an English man is planning to set a new record by riding across Europe in less than 20 days.

A Scottish woman is looking for homes for two stray dogs she rescued in Brazil while riding around the world.

A British father shares gruesome photos of his son after the boy crashed face-first into a brick wall, saying it’s a reminder to always wear a helmet. Which might have actually helped, but only if he’d worn it over his face.

An Aussie woman says she deserves a reduced sentence because the bike rider she left bleeding on the side of the road while driving high on ice didn’t die, but merely suffered permanent, life changing injuries.

You’ve got to be kidding. An Australian driver was fined for throwing a cup filled with ice that hit a bicyclist in the head. By the EPA. For littering.

An Aussie cyclist walks with probation for bike rage tirade against a distracted driver who cut him off in traffic, after arguing that “fuck” is not obscene.

Seriously, don’t be this guy. A bicyclist in Australia cuts directly in front of a driver, then flips the motorist off for good measure.

After an Australian man loses his driver’s license for six months, he discovers he feels better, weighs less and actually likes riding a bike. Even if he doesn’t take responsibility for those speeding tickets.

A New Zealand bicyclist is shocked to discover an 18-inch wide bike lane that’s narrower than her handlebars.

A bike shop in Yangon, Myanmar leads a weekly nighttime bike ride in the city, where bicycles are banned by tradition, if not law.

A distracted ebike rider in Singapore got a $2,000 fine for colliding with a bicyclist when his mobile phone rang.

A Chinese man rode nearly 10,000 miles from Benin back to his hometown to raise funds to help install solar power stations and water wells in the African country.

 

Competitive Cycling

The legendary Katie Compton won her 14th consecutive national cyclocross championship, while the recently unretired Meredith Miller took the singlespeed title.

Tragic news from the Netherlands, where BMX star Jelle Van Gorkom is in a coma after a training accident, with no word on when he might awaken.

The Guardian looks at the tenuous finances of lower tier pro cycling teams.

Cycling Weekly talks with recently retired British track cyclist Becky James about the importance of finding a balance between work, training and family life.

South African cyclist Louis Meintjes learned the hard way to put on sunscreen under his mesh jersey. I once ended up with the Canari logo tanned onto my back after wearing my favorite jersey a little too often.

A self-trained Kenyan cyclist will compete in the grueling Red Bull Trans-Siberian Extreme race, despite having a bullet lodged in his stomach from a shooting that killed his father when he was 15.

A Kiwi cyclist wins New Zealand’s U-23 cycling championship just one year after taking up the sport.

 

Finally…

Nothing like using a fat bike to make a really fat snow bike. Apparently, bottling a bicyclist is a thing.

And if you’re going to ride stoned, leave the illegal prescription meds, butterfly knife and counterfeit bills at home.

………

Thanks to John H for his generous donation to help support this site.

Santa Ana mountain bike rider collapsed and died in front of South Coast Global Medical Center

Even being in exactly the right place at the right time isn’t always enough.

The Orange County Register is reporting that a man, who has not been publicly identified, collapsed with riding his mountain bike on South Bristol Street in Santa Ana around 6:30 this morning.

He fell directly in front of the South Coast Global Medical Center, and was eventually taken inside where he was pronounced dead.

There’s no word on why he collapsed or the cause of death.

According to the paper, so many motorists stopped to help the victim that police initially thought he must have been hit by one of them.

Too often we only hear about the conflicts between people on bikes and in cars, whether verbal or physical, intentional or otherwise. As sad as this news is, it’s heartwarming to see that there are still people who care about others on our streets.

This is the second bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first in Orange County.

Unfortunately, issues medical issues like this can arise at any time, often with little or no warning. So let this be a reminder to see your doctor on a regular basis, especially if you’re older or have health issues, to ensure that you’re healthy enough to ride.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and his loved ones.

87-year old man killed riding across intersection; 2nd fatal bike Santa Ana crash in two days

For the second time in two days, a man has been killed riding a bike in Santa Ana.

According to the Orange County Register, 87-year old Lien Huu Ha was struck by a pickup as he was riding across the intersection at West 1st Street and South Center Street around 12:50 pm.

According to witnesses, Lien was riding west with traffic on 1st when he turned left at Center, and was struck by a driver headed in the opposite direction on 1st.

He was taken to UCI Medical Center, where he passed away.

The driver remained at the scene; police don’t suspect he was under the influence.

A street view shows Center connecting with 1st in a T-intersection controlled by a red light, with three lanes in each direction on 1st and a center left turn lane.

Given his age, it’s possible that Lien may have started across the street with the light, and was unable to finish crossing before the light changed. However, that is just speculation at this point.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Santa Ana Police Department at 714/245-8200.

This is the 54th bicycling fatality in Southern California, and the 10th in Orange County.

It comes after David Lee Macmillian was killed riding across Main Street on Thursday, less than six miles away.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Lien Huu Ha and all his loved ones.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up. 

Homeless bike rider dies hours after he was hit by a car in Santa Ana

This morning we mentioned that a bike rider was seriously injured after reportedly riding out into traffic in Santa Ana.

Now word comes that he died of his injuries several hours after the wreck last night.

The Orange County Register reports that 54-year old David Lee Macmillian was struck by a car near Main Street and Columbine Ave around 6:47 pm. He is described as homeless.

Macmillian was reportedly riding north on the sidewalk on the southbound side of Main Street when rode out into traffic, and was hit by the driver of a 2005 Corvette.

However, it’s very unclear what that means.

A street view shows a T-intersection controlled by a red light, with three lanes in each direction on Main.

It could be that he came off the curb mid-block and rode into traffic on the wrong side of the street, or he could have attempted to cross Main.

There’s also a a utility box and light pole blocking the sidewalk just past Columbine, which could have caused him to enter the street to go around it.

The Register says it’s still unknown whether Macmillian was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The question is whether his actions on the bike suggest he was drunk or stoned, or if police suspect that merely because he was living on the streets.

This is the 53rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the ninth in Orange County. It’s also at least the 11th bicycling death in Santa Ana since 2011.

That compares to 66 in SoCal this time last year, and ninth in Orange County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for David Lee Macmillian and all his loved ones. 

 

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