Tag Archive for Santa Monica

New bike lane appears on North Figueroa, 16-year old critical after SaMo hit-and-run, and upper Ballona Creek bike path closure

Maybe we should check the weather forecast.

Because hell appears to have frozen over.

Streetsblog reports that a new painted bike lane has been installed on a .8 mile section of North Figueroa in Cypress Park.

Which wouldn’t be major news, except it’s located in the 1st Council District, where Councilmember Gil Cedillo has worked to block bike lanes since taking office nine long years ago, while keeping North Figueroa one of the deadliest corridors in Los Angeles.

Cedillo has gone so far as to ask the council to remove all proposed bike lanes in CD1 from the city’s mobility plan, arguing that the people in his district don’t ride bikes. And evidently forgetting that many people in the immigrant-rich district rely on bikes as their primary, if not only, form of transportation.

It’s not clear why the councilmember, whose opposition to safety projects earned him the moniker Roadkill Gill, had an apparent change of heart.

One clue comes from LADOT spokesperson Colin Sweeney, who notes that the new bike lanes wouldn’t inconvenience the people in cars.

L.A. City Transportation Department (LADOT) spokesperson Colin Sweeney wrote that “StreetsLA recently completed resurfacing on Figueroa after which LADOT restriped the street to bring it up to current standards. In this instance, restriping created space to add a bike lane to the existing configuration without impacting other road users (no impact on parking or number of travel lanes).” North Figueroa was repaved between Pasadena Avenue and the 110 Freeway.

Although neighborhood advocate Felicia G. has another, equally plausible explanation.

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Another day, another SoCal hit-and-run.

The Santa Monica Lookout reports a 16-year old girl is in critical condition, and a 29-year old man is behind bars following yet another hit-and-run collision.

The victim was injured around 2 a.m. Sunday, when Maximiliano Ramos Santiago allegedly slammed into her bike at Chelsea Ave and Santa Monica Blvd in Santa Monica.

Santiago was arrested at his home yesterday, and booked on charges of felony hit-and-run and driving without a license.

Which would have given him plenty of time to sober up, assuming he had been drinking, which is highly likely given the time of the crash.

Let’s hope she makes a full and fast recovery.

And that the driver who did this is held fully accountable for leaving a young woman bleeding in the street.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Santa Monica Police Investigator Evan Raleigh at 310/458-8954, or call the watch commander at 310/458-8426.

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It looks like the upper section of the Ballona Creek bike path will be out of commission for the next four and a half months.

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Local

A letter writer takes the LA Times’ Robin Abcarian to task for questioning the value of Vision Zero when, she said, eliminating traffic deaths is doomed to fail. Although that name of that letter writer seems sort of familiar.

 

State

Getting flowers by bike in San Diego.

Solano Beach has rejected a $10 million claim from the family of 75-year-old Allen Hunter II, who was killed by an alleged drunk driver while riding in a painted bike lane on Highway 101 in the city last summer; filing a formal claim is the first step before filing a lawsuit, and usually gets rejected pro forma.

A letter from Streets For All founder Michael Schneider argues that Rancho Mirage can, and should, make convert Highway 111 into a real street that meets the needs of all users, rather than just the ones in cars. Exactly the same arguments apply to PCH in Malibu, as well, which should be the city’s Main Street, instead of a sewer for pass-through drivers and their cars.

Residents of a San Mateo neighborhood overwhelming oppose plans for a bike lane network, preferring preserving street parking over the safety of people on bicycles; however, people in the rest of the city support the project.

Santa Rosa police are looking for a suspected bike thief who used a fraudulent ID and credit card as security to take a $7,000 mountain bike out for a test ride, and never came back.

 

National

Streetsblog invites you to vote on the worst kind of bicycle infrastructure; among the choices are Orange County favorite painted bike lanes next to high speed roadways, and sharrows, which only exist to help drivers improve their aim and thin the herd.

The New York Times says pedestrian fatalities are spiking, due in part to a surge in reckless driving. Although it’s possible that the jump in reckless driving might just have a tiny bit to do with carmakers ads showing that’s exactly how you’re supposed to drive their damn cars.

Electrek marked Valentines Day with a look at the best ebikes designed to carry two people.

A new $15 steerer tube cap promises to secure an Apple AirTag out of sight to locate your bike if its ever stolen.

Fast Company says Peloton should have seen it coming.

Writer Mitch Albom, author of The Five People You Meet in Heaven and The Stranger In the Lifeboat is one of us, making a call for people in Detroit to donate their underused bicycles for people who can’t afford a car.

A new documentary follows seven Boston women who ride their bikes through the city at night.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Pennsylvania man is still riding at 90 years old, although the area’s hills mean he does most of his riding inside. Which makes him an ideal candidate for a ped-assist ebike to get back on the road. 

Police in Virginia are looking for a 74-year old diabetic man who went missing Sunday morning while riding his bike to a friend’s house around eight miles away; his daughter says he may be in the early stages of dementia.

 

International

Cycling Weekly says friends don’t let friends buy bikes that seem too good to be true. And probably are.

Thieves cleaned out a Welsh family’s entire collection of nearly $30,000 worth of mountain bikes.

Now you, too, can ride the legendary cobbles of Flanders.

 

Competitive Cycling

A trio of pro cyclists explain how they keep their relationships from going off the rails while living a bike-centered life. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

 

Finally…

If you can’t get it out, dissolve it. What it’s really like to be a pro cycling race photographer.

And I’ll take any excuse to see Sophia Loren on a bicycle, even if she is facing the wrong way.

https://twitter.com/CoolBikeArt1/status/1493299001520803843

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

Ride to letter of the law in SaMo today, police look for hit-and-run bike rider, and Beverly Hills cops accused of racial bias

Apologies for the short notice on this one.

You’ll want to ride to the letter of the law in Santa Monica today while the police are conducting another bicycle and pedestrian safety operation.

They’ll be looking for violations that put bike riders and pedestrians at risk, regardless of who commits them. So just make sure it isn’t you.

And maybe the city can give us a little more notice next time.

Photo of green bike lane on Main Street in Santa Monica.

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Beverly Hills Police are looking for this man for questioning in a hit-and-run collision with a pedestrian.

If you know him — or if it’s you — contact the Beverly Hills Police Department at 310/550-4951. Right now, they just want to talk.

And yes, it’s still hit-and-run if you’re on a bicycle, and ride away from a collision that injures another person. So don’t do that.

Stick around and exchange information, or wait until the police arrive, just like you would in a car collision.

Because you would, right?

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Speaking of Beverly Hills cops, the department is accused of harassing Black people on and around Rodeo Drive, according to a lawsuit filed by a Black couple visiting from Philadelphia, who were arrested for the heinous crime of riding scooters on the gilded street.

They were among the targets of a task force set up in the wake of last year’s George Floyd protests to address fraud in the high-end shopping district arrested 106 people — 105 of whom were Black.

The other man was identified as Latino.

Just a coincidence, I’m sure.

Other Black people were arrested for walking outside of the crosswalk or roller skating, although the police noted that the task force did recover 13 loaded guns and seized $250,000 in cash and ill-gotten debit cards.

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Great idea. A new clamp-on attachment promises to convert a wheelchair to an e-tricycle.

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

No bias here. A Purdue University website says people on bicycles break laws and create danger for drivers. Just wait until someone tells them about the dangers caused by lawbreaking drivers.

Police in Nottingham, England are looking for the driver caught on video calmly driving down a bike lane, as if it was his or her own personal traffic lane.

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

A student at LA’s Santee High School was shot in the leg following a fist fight with another student, who fled on a blue bicycle.

Police in Ventura are looking for a man who randomly attacked a woman walking on bike path near Kimball Park, after he rode his bike past her, then turned around and assaulted her for no apparent reason.

Someone is riding a bike around the Harvard University campus randomly punching male grad students.

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Local

An op-ed in the LA Times examines why people of color are more likely to be the victims of traffic violence, both in Los Angeles and throughout the US, while noting that pedestrian deaths are up more than a third in the six years since the city adopted Vision Zero.

Metro Bike is offering free one-ride passes for Labor Day weekend, and a 30-day pass for just one dollar.

No bias here, either. A writer for Yo! Venice says now that the city has cleaned up the homeless encampments, it’s time to deal with the “scourge” of e-scooters, complaining they’re “out-of-control and everywhere.”

Pasadena approved spending $168,000 on a Slow Streets program by repurposing funds originally budgeted for the 626 Golden Streets open streets fest, but had to return another $162,000 in Metro grant money.

Mike Richards may have lost his short-lived job replacing Alex Trebek as host of Jeopardy, but he’s still one of us, riding with his family on an offroad trail in LA.

 

State

More on the passage of AB 122, which will allow California bike riders to treat stop signs as yields, assuming the governor signs it. And which overwhelmingly passed both houses of the legislature with rare bipartisan support.

Officers from the Westminster Police Department and Orange County Sheriff’s Deputies finished a four-day, 630-mile to Sacramento to honor officers who died in the line of duty earlier this year.

If you were planning to spend the holiday weekend at the China Peak bike park outside Fresno, start making new plans, after it abruptly closed for the season due to the high fire risk.

Campus police at Chico State are urging students to secure their bikes with a U-lock, as bike theft increases on the campus.

 

National

They get it. The American Prospect says it’s time to take advantage of the opportunity presented by the pandemic by building back, not just better, but bike friendly, while noting that not many US cities have done that.

The Verge offers more on the groundbreaking new bike-by-wire system designed to power ped-assist ebikes without a chain or belt drive.

MSN ranks their picks for the best bike computers for all types of bicyclists. On a similar note, Forbes offers their choices for the best bike helmets for different types of riders.

A bike rider in Salt Lake City was lucky to escape with minor head injuries after he rear-ended a stopped van when his brakes apparently failed. A reminder to always check your brakes before you ride, and clean your rims to remove oil or other residue if you have rim brakes. 

Drivers in Texas could now see jail time for killing or injuring a pedestrian in a crosswalk. Now extend the law to bike lanes, and we can talk.

Chicago is installing new protected bike lanes on the “notoriously dangerous intersection” where School of Rock drummer Kevin Clark was killed while riding a bike last summer; 13 years after another bike rider was killed at the same spot. Although the “protection” is nothing more than the plastic car-tickler bendy posts that too often pass for protection in Los Angeles, and won’t actually protect anyone. 

A longtime Chicago community activist and bike and pedestrian advocate was critically injured when he as struck by an SUV driver, after he somehow “appeared in the street” as the driver was turning right. Yet another reminder that no one ever just appears out of nowhere; it’s just another way of drivers admitting that they weren’t paying attention behind the wheel.

Life is cheap in New York, where the operator of a limo company walked without a single day in jail for a “catastrophic brake failure” that killed 20 people; he’ll serve just five years of probation and 1,000 hours of community service despite copping a plea to 20 counts of criminally negligent homicide.

After being feted by Forbes as one of their Under 30 honorees, the founder of Philadelphia-based folding bike helmer maker Kova by AnneeLondon shuttered the business for the sake of her mental health after struggling to keep it going during the pandemic.

A bill to officially designate the 1,300-mile 9/11 National Memorial Trail connecting the three sites of the terrorist attacks, stretching from Pennsylvania to DC, passed the US House by a unanimous vote and now awaits its fate in the Senate.

 

International

The Guardian says bikepacking is the best way to escape the crowds in Cornwall on a new 124-mile gravel trail.

Berlin is making their popup bike lanes permanent, after the city saw a 25% jump in bicycling rates during the pandemic. On the other hand, Los Angeles can’t make any popup bike lanes permanent, because they didn’t install any. And no one really knows if bike riding rates went up during the pandemic, because no one was counting.

They get it. Lebanon residents are fighting to make the country more bicycle friendly as a solution to congestion and rising fuel prices. Exactly why we should do the same thing here, especially if you add combating climate change to the equation.

Atlas Obscura looks back fondly to the golden age of bicycle noodle delivery, when workers would ride with one hand on the handlebars and the other balancing a massive stack of boxed soba noodles on their shoulder.

 

Competitive Cycling

Swiss road champ Marlen Reusser broke away from a six-woman breakaway to win the first day of the Challenge by La Vuelta, with SoCal sprinter Coryn Rivera finishing second; the four stage race serves as the severely truncated women’s counterpart to the 21 stage Vuelta.

Colombian Miguel Ángel López claimed a solo victory after riding away from the pack on the hors catégorie Altu d’El Gamoniteiru in Thursday’s 18th stage of the Vuelta, while Primož Roglič finished second to virtually his seal victory in this year’s race.

Sixty-year old Aussie Paralympic cycling great Carol Cooke was hospitalized with a punctured lung following a “nasty crash” with two other competitors on the rain slicked road cycling course; she’d won gold in the event five years ago in Rio.

Cyclist questions whether this year’s Tour de France was decided by the high number of crashes involving top riders.

 

Finally…

Why settle for a regular ebike when you can have a DIY part-time pneumatic tall bike? That feeling when your bird hates flying but loves riding on your handlebars.

And who needs an ebike when you’ve got rocket power?

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Thanks once again to Matthew R for his generous monthly donation to help support this site. Donations of any size or frequency are always welcome and appreciated. You can also help by telling your favorite local bike shop to advertise here.

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

Injured Encinitas bike advocate wins $11 million settlement, SaMo crashes drop 50%, and boring street racers into quitting

It’s the very definition of tragic irony.

In December of 2018, the executive director of advocacy group Cardiff 101 Main Street was run down by a driver while riding her bike on the sharrows on the North Coast Highway in the Leucadia neighborhood of Encinitas.

Exactly where she had long fought for safety improvements, including a road diet and bike lanes.

Roberta Walker, a longtime bike and pedestrian advocate, and former professional snowboarder, suffered multiple catastrophic injuries that left her survival in doubt for some time after she was placed in a medically induced coma.

This week, she settled a lawsuit with Encinitas for a whopping $11 million to cover past and future medical expenses, as well as what will likely be years, if not a lifetime, of rehab.

Although something tells me she’d gladly give up every penny to avoid those injuries and have her old life back.

Her lawyer argued that the sharrows were a dangerous condition of public property and a direct cause of the crash, in which she was run down from behind by a pickup driver.

Which, sadly, is about as good a description as any for far too many sharrows.

Thankfully, that won’t be a problem much longer.

The long-awaited project began preliminary construction activities last month and features traffic calming measures, buffered bike lanes, raised medians, roundabouts and enhanced crosswalks.

“One profound irony of this accident is that Ms. Walker herself had advocated for a dedicated bike lane in multiple City Council meetings,” (plaintiffs’ attorney Ed) Susolik said.

There’s no word on whether the driver ever faced charges.

Or even got a ticket for nearly killing someone riding legally, exactly where she was supposed to be.

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Santa Monica saw a 50% drop in traffic collisions over the last year as more people stayed home during the pandemic, and a 70% reduction in drunk driving due to the closure of restaurants and bars.

The city also repurposed street parking for al fresco restaurant dining, and built another 18 miles of protected bike lanes — which equals half of all the bike lanes built in Los Angeles in the 2019/2020 fiscal year, despite being just a tiny fraction of LA’s size.

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Apparently, the Burbank Police Department plans to bore street racers into giving it up.

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Today’s common theme is a host of new bikes, e- and otherwise.

Who wouldn’t want an ebike inspired by the legendary Caroll Shelby?

When you need your powerful ebike camouflaged for hunting.

A 24-year old Irishman created a new ebike designed to replace your car, and turned to Vietnam for manufacturing.

Or maybe you’d rather have a cross between a teeny tiny car and a throttle controlled adult e-tricycle.

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

After London cop carelessly cut off a bike rider, the officer made a U-turn and came back — to lecture the guy on the bike.

It’s a sad commentary when even carfree British streets aren’t.

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

Tragic news from the UK, where a bike rider is on trial for allegedly jumping a red light and slamming into a 73-year old man walking home from work; the victim died days later as a result of severe brain injuries suffered in the crash; bicyclist turned himself in after initially fleeing the scene. Yet another reminder that pedestrians are the only people on the street who are more vulnerable than we are. So ride carefully around them, dammit. And stick around after a crash. 

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Local

LADOT is planning safety improvements to a 1.2 mile segment of San Vicente Blvd east of Beverly Hills when the street is scheduled to be repaved this June; options include a separated or parking protected bike lane.

Metro is hosting a virtual bike repair and flat fixing class this Saturday.

 

State

A San Diego bike rider was lucky to survive when he swerved suddenly to avoid a garbage truck in a parking lot, and was impaled through the neck and jaw by a hook hanging from the front of a pickup.

UC Santa Barbara talks with geography professor Trisalyn Nelson, who created BikeMaps to allow bike riders to report trouble spots after yet another too-close call on her bike.

Authorities identified the victim of Saturday’s Turlock hit-and-run as a 44-year old Turlock man; police are looking for the driver of a charcoal gray Mercedes sedan with visible damage to the front and/or side.

Streetsblog is looking for freelance help in San Francisco.

A Gold Country bike columnist says unless you make a living on it, your bike is a toy, so have fun on it. Evidently, he’s never heard of bike commuting or transportation riding. Which doesn’t mean he’s not right about the fun part.

 

National

The Verge looks at the growing DIY ebike movement, citing the birth of Rad Power Bikes as a prime example.

Tragic news from Phoenix, where a 22-year old man was collateral damage when a shootout erupted between a group of people standing in a field as he was riding by on his bike.

It may be illegal to park in a Houston bike lane now, but that doesn’t mean it actually stops anyone.

Chicago’s Goose Island beer is marking the release of their new 312 Lemonade Shandy by giving away new bicycles to anyone who can find one of 50 giant lemons hidden throughout the city on — you guessed it — March 12th, aka 3-12. And they make damn good beer, too.

The bike shortage induced by the bike boom induced by the pandemic has made its way to Bowling Green KY, home to the fighting WKU Hilltoppers.

Armed robbers are targeting New York delivery riders to steal the expensive ebikes they need to do their jobs.

 

International

The family of British motorcyclist Harry Dunn say they’re offended by an offer from American spy Anne Sacoolas to do community service for the wrong way hit-and-run that took his life, after she claimed diplomatic immunity to flee the country. Although you have to wonder about American intelligence services if they can’t figure out that Brits drive on the other side of the road.

A bike chain in the UK is facing well-deserved criticism for laying off 300 workers and shifting the rest to zero guaranteed hour contracts in an effort to slash costs, despite booming business from the bike boom.

 

Competitive Cycling

Vincenzo Nibali, who should know, says turn off those bike computers and power meters during a race and ride on instinct, like Strade Bianche winner Mathieu van der Poel.

Rouleur previews the upcoming Giro, the first of the three Grand Tours.

 

Finally…

Business up front, party in the back — a DIY mountain bike with a mullet. That feeling when the cops have you dead to rights for stealing a bike from a disabled person, and you somehow think you can do better in front of a jury.

And when you want to learn how to make a bicycle, among other things.

In Japanese.

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

Vandals attack Slow Street in Valley Village, GoFundMe raises $25k for Black Lives bicyclist, and blocking bike lanes in SaMo

It’s a blustery day in LA, and much of Southern California.

With makes it a great day to get that KOM, as long as you can keep the wind at your back. Otherwise, it could feel like riding with an anchor.

And as someone who used to deal with Colorado’s notorious Chinook winds, bear in mind that an ill-timed gust can literally blow you off your bike, or all the way across the roadway.

Or both.

So maybe you’re better off just staying home with a good book.

Photo by Anja from Pixabay.

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No bias here.

Someone clearly isn’t a fan of the Slow Streets movement, at least not in Valley Village.

Or maybe they’re just a fan of speeding cars and keeping the streets the deadly domain of dangerous drivers.

Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.

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The family of fallen Ride for Black Lives bicyclist Branden Finley call for help finding the carjacker who killed him in a hit-and-run crash in Downtown Los Angeles, as a crowdfunding page for his family raises over $25,000 the first day.

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What do you call a bike lane when it’s not a bike lane?

A loading zone.

I tried fighting that same battle on San Vicente nearly a decade ago.

It wasn’t hard to get FedEx and UPS to agree that parking in a bike lane violated their internal policies, and pinky swear promise they wouldn’t do it anymore.

And while the Santa Monica police couldn’t grasp the concept that a bike lane is a legal lane of traffic reserved for bicycle, or that blocking one is a clear violation of state law, the chief agreed that double parking is illegal, at least.

But that was several SaMo PD chiefs ago. And nothing ever changed.

Delivery drivers kept parking there. Cops kept ignoring it.

And bike riders continued risking their lives mixing with impatient drivers who couldn’t comprehend that blocked bike lanes mean bike riders have to merge into the traffic lane.

Clearly, adding Amazon delivery vans to the mix hasn’t helped, either.

The only solution is to make it a protected bike lane, which it should be anyway.

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

Frightening bike theft in Stockton, where a man in a car pulled a gun on a 54-year old woman and demanded the bike she was riding, tossing it in his backseat before speeding away.

A Healdsburg CA driver lays on his horn to demand a man riding with his son get the hell out of his way. And when they don’t, he rams the father from behind.

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

Police in New Jersey are looking for a man who grabbed a woman’s butt before riding off on his bicycle. And no, that’s not cute or funny — it’s sexual assault.

A Singapore food delivery rider faces charges for crashing into an eight-year old girl as she walked home from school with her mother, breaking her glasses and seriously injuring her eye.

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Local

No surprise here. Los Angeles once again has the worst traffic of any major city in the US. Yet the city still isn’t taking any significant steps to provide alternatives to driving and get people out of their cars.

Boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard is one of us, as he goes for a bike ride with his wife and daughter.

 

State

Good news from behind the Orange Curtain, as Caltrans agrees to remove the ill-conceived rumble strips on PCH through Bolsa Chica that posed a needless risk along the popular riding route. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

A Bakersfield advocate calls for the city to establish a Vision Zero program to become a safer place for pedestrians and bicyclists.

 

National

There may be hope for all those many and varied bicycle-to-vehicle communication systems that are supposed to be the salvation bike riders and pedestrians, as a consortium of bicycle and automotive companies finally agree to set a common standard that will work across platforms.

Just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean you can’t commute by bike.

An editor for Vice learns that riding a bicycle is just like riding a bike, even at the ripe old age of 29.

The Sierra Club offers suggestions on how to store your bike inside during the winter. Or better yet, let your bike sleep inside, and keep riding it outside, regardless of the season.

Who needs bikewear when you’ve got a $180 pair of denim overalls?

A new report shows Washington State needs to spend $5.7 billion to fix the state’s roads and improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians, while advocates say the existing strategies clearly aren’t working. Which is pretty much the same story in California, and just about everywhere else.

A Boise, Idaho nonprofit hand-delivered nearly 60 bicycles to families in need to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s legacy of service.

Even in rural Kansas, a driver can turn his or her car into a lethal weapon to deliver a punishment pass, as a bicycling trio learned firsthand.

Chicago is considering what looks like a curb-protected two way bike lane through the city’s Fulton Market.

When a Virginia pastor had trouble finding a new bike after his was stolen, he responded by starting a new ministry to repair and refurbish bicycles for people in need.

 

International

The bike industry clearly has the gravel bug, as Road.cc rates 18 of the hottest new gravel bikes from some of the most popular bike brands. And while they’re at it, they also pick the year’s best commuter bike, with prices starting at the equivalent of just $500.

Bike Radar gets a jump on next year’s holidays with a guide to the best gifts for bicyclists in 2021, starting with a five buck DVD of Breaking Away.

An Oxford University professor says forget the WHO’s guidance, and wear a mask when you run or ride a bike.

You know there’s a problem when South African bike riders are warned away from a particular road because the risk of getting robbed is too high.

Cyclist examines how Taiwan’s Giant became the, well, giant of the bike world.

 

Competitive Cycling

Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome blamed an undiagnosed strength deficit and an inexplicably painful screw resulting from his horrific 2019 crash for a disappointing comeback season in 2020. But that may be behind him, as he takes a couple KOMs on a “Super Saturday” ride through the Malibu Hills as he rehabs in Los Angeles.

Twenty-two year old Tour de France winner Tadej Pogačar stands in the way of Froome’s search for a record-tying fifth Tour title, as he commits to defending his yellow jersey before tackling the Vuelta.

 

Finally…

Saying a boy’s bike is easy enough for a girl probably isn’t the best marketing idea. For 25 grand, they could at least give you more than one gear. It’s not a giant Ferris wheel, it’s a bike tire.

And since we started the day with Winnie the Pooh, we might as well end it with a little Tickety-Boo.

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

Murder charge in stoned death of autistic bike rider, call for expanded Metro funding, and keep cars out of SaMo bike lanes

It’s Day 13 of the 6th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to Trinh D and David D for their generous support for SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy! 

It only takes a few clicks to donate and help keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day!

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Long Beach resident Richard Lavalle was charged with second-degree murder in the DUI death of 12-year old bike rider Noel Bascon in Costa Mesa Sunday evening.

The boy, who suffered from autism, was riding with his father in a crosswalk when Lavalle allegedly ran a stop sign while driving stoned.

Lavalle is being held without bail, and faces up to 30-years behind bars if he’s convicted.

He could also be charged with a third strike after robbery convictions in 2009 and 2018, which could result in a possible life sentence.

The murder charge results from a Watson Advisement following a 2013 conviction for driving under the influence in San Diego County, stating Lavalle could be charged with murder if he killed someone while driving under the influence in the future. Otherwise, he would have faced a manslaughter charge.

His passenger, Lee Anna Murphy, has yet to be charged despite being found in possession of illegal drugs and paraphernalia.

A crowdfunding account to help pay Bascon’s funeral expenses has raised over $17,000 in just one day, topping the original $10,000 goal.

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Thirty LA-area organizations are calling for expanded eligibly of Metro funding currently dedicated for highways.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1336399149403541510

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No, Santa Monica’s new two-way protected bike lane isn’t for cars.

Even if their owners assume they own all the road.

https://twitter.com/abikeist/status/1336529892746297344

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Here’s your chance to weigh in on transportation issues in South LA.

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Local

Just say “bikes mean business” to get a discount on a deep dish pizza at Masa of Echo Park this Thursday; the last time the deal was offered, it drew over 200 bicyclists.

A new masterplan for LA’s Exposition Park calls for improved access for bike riders and pedestrians, possibly including protected bike lanes.

Tis the season. Hats off to the Pasadena Rotary for donating 146 bikes to local kidsThanks to Tim Rutt for the heads-up.

 

State

A coalition of California advocacy groups are calling for the next chair of the state senate’s influential Transportation Committee to be a climate champion who understands the importance of investing in transit and active transportation.

It was a bad weekend in Fresno, where a 73-year old woman was killed riding her bike after allegedly veering onto the wrong side of the road.

Also from Fresno, a man riding a bicycle was stabbed several times and had his phone stolen by several people who got out of a passing car to attack him; fortunately, he’s expected to survive.

And police aren’t sure why a 42-year old Fresno man was shot multiple times and killed while riding his bicycle.

 

National

They get it. CNBC reports the coronavirus pandemic has spurred a bike boom but most American cities are far from ready for it.

Gear Patrol looks at the latest bikes and accessories as proof of the unstoppable cycle of innovation.

A writer for Fast Company says joining the ebike revolution made this year a lot more tolerable.

Legendary bikemaker Gary Fisher, who literally helped invent mountain biking, is out with a new autobiography.

Road Bike Action Magazine offers tips on how to buy your next roadie.

After his stolen bike was recovered, a bighearted Washington boy gave it to a young fire victim because he’d already gotten a new one.

A Texas bike shop suffered a $10,000 loss when thieves smashed the storefront with a U-Haul and made off with five bikes.

Chicago considers the local community by ensuring a new bike bridge conforms with ancient Jewish law.

An Ohio town filed charges against a driver who killed a 7-year old boy riding his bike in a crosswalk last month, one day after a Cleveland newspaper reported they were illegally withholding details of the crash.

The pandemic forced an annual Massachusetts fundraising ride to go virtual this year, and still managed to raise $50 million for cancer treatment and research.

Horrible story from Flushing NY, where a teenager was talking with a man outside a restaurant when a second man came up from behind and slashed him in the face, before the first man ran off with his bicycle and cellphone.

‘Tis the season, too. Two hundred New Jersey kids got new Huffy bikes courtesy of former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Ron Jaworski.

 

International

Heartbreaking story from Toronto, where family members mourn a 23-year old woman who was killed riding her bike home to her college apartment.

An Ontario, Canada woman is headed back to jail to serve the remainder of her sentence for killing a bike rider while driving drunk, after the admitted alcoholic violated her parole with yet another DUI conviction.

An American expat living in England was killed when the brakes failed on his ebike during a steep descent while riding with his wife.

Britain’s Cyclist magazine looks at their favorite lightweight bikes of 2020.

They get it. The authors of an op-ed in the prestigious BMJ — the former British Medical Journal — say free parking for healthcare workers just forces them to drive, instead of using healthier, and more sustainable and affordable means. 

You’ve got to be kidding. Life really is cheap in the UK, where a drunk driver walked with a suspended sentence, despite dragging a bike rider who heroically tried to stop his car, while driving at three times the legal limit.

After a Milan bookshop owner was forced to close, he took to his cargo bike to peddle his tomes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling’s Joe Lindsey takes a difficult in-depth look at pro cycling’s diversity problems in a nearly all-white sport. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling’s site blocks you out.

Former NBA All Star Reggie Miller joined the board of USA Cycling; the passionate bicyclist was one of four new members named to the board of the organization governing bike racing in the US.

Southern California’s Coryn Rivera is looking forward to next year’s Tokyo Olympics and the World Championships in Flanders, as well as joining a newly formed women’s WorldTour team, after a year marred by injury and illness.

Cyclist profiles surprise Giro winner Tao Geoghegan Hart and his climb to pro cycling’s top ranks.

 

Finally…

That feeling when Andy Griffith holds a lifelong a grudge against you for knocking him off his bike. Traveling the world on a Penny Farthing.

And be glad you avoided the great British bicycle stock bubble of the 1890s.

………

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

Lyft e-bikeshare coming to Santa Monica, Arroyo Seco bike path finally patched, and new survey on bike helmet laws

E-bikeshare is back in Santa Monica, following the demise of Jump Bikes after their sale to Lime earlier this year.

Now Lyft is introducing a new ebike system in partnership with the city.

The bikes will be docked at the existing Breeze bikeshare docks, after Santa Monica’s municipal bikeshare bites the dust this November, eventually expanding to 500 bikes.

Here’s what the company has to say.

The new ebikes allow riders to travel around Santa Monica and West Los Angeles with less effort. When the rider pedals, the ebikes use a small electric motor to boost the rider’s pedal power, making longer trips easier and more accessible. Users will be able to rent ebikes in the Lyft app for $1 to unlock and $0.34 per minute – just scan the QR code and go. Riders can lock the bikes to any one of 80 Breeze stations with the attached cable, or to any public bike rack within the service area for an extra $1. For more about pricing and service area, visit the Lyft website

Lyft also offers a Community Pass for bikes and scooters in Santa Monica. The Lyft Community Pass is a reduced-fare membership program for qualifying residents of Santa Monica and LA. Membership costs $5/month and includes discounted ebike rides at $0.05/min. The Community Pass program is available to residents ages 18 and older who qualify for the Big Blue Bus Low Income Fare is Easy (LIFE) program, Calfresh, Medicaid, SNAP, or the SCE Energy Savings Assistance Program and to qualifying Santa Monica Community College students.

 

Correction: I originally wrote that Jump had been acquired by Lyft, but they were actually purchased by Lime. My apologies for the error.

………

Speaking of Santa Monica, David Drexler confirms that the 5 mph speed limit signs have been removed from the newly widened beachfront Marvin Braude bike path through the city.

As we noted last week, the signs with the ridiculously low speed limit were installed temporarily as part of a construction project.

………

It looks like they’ve finally gotten around to patching that gaping hole in the Arroyo Seco Bike Path, which should be open again soon.

The lengthy delay in getting it fixed could stem from the mishmash of public agencies involved in the repair work, including, but possibly not limited to,

  • LADOT
  • Bureau of Engineering
  • Board of Public Works
  • LA County
  • Regional Water Quality Control Board
  • StreetsLA (nee Bureau of Street Services)

Maybe someone should form a single umbrella agency to manage the city and county river channel bikeways so it doesn’t take the local equivalent of a UN Security Council negotiation every time something goes wrong.

I’m told credit goes to LA Bicycle Advisory Committee member John Laue for getting this done.

Thanks to Kent Strumpell for the heads up.

………

Researchers at San Jose State University want your input on a survey exploring the relationship between mandatory helmet use regulations and adult cyclists’ behavior in California.

Scroll all the way down to agree to participate.

Thanks to Robert Leone for the link.

………

You may remember Christopher Kidd from his days running the LADOT Bike Blog, which is about the last time the agency communicated effectively to the general public.

Since then, he’s been building a successful career as a Complete Streets planner in the Bay Area.

Which should make this an interesting talk.

………

Local

Bike the Vote LA’s Michael MacDonald has written his own progressive guide to the 2020 election in LA County.

 

State

Governor Newsom has signed SB-288, which removes CEQA oversight of bike, pedestrian, light rail and bus rapid transit projects, eliminating a tool too often abused by opponents to halt environmentally friendly projects.

La Jolla Black Lives Matter supporters say they’re going to keep drawing chalk signs on the bike path supporting the movement, no matter how many times the city washes them off.

A San Diego op-ed argues that riding a bike isn’t just good for your health, but for your career, as well, allowing you to work out work problems while you ride. I’ve done some of my best work on my bike; it’s particularly effective to get out and ride when you feel stuck.

 

National

An urban planner writes that we have an “opportunity to make a generational shift to supporting walking, cycling and public transit over vehicular” transportation, and to reclaim our neighborhoods.

WaPo offers advice on how to safely and politely travel bike trails during the Age of Coronavirus.

Outside recommends accessories to make your gravel riding smoother and more comfortable.

Singletracks offers their choices for the best bike seats to bring your toddler along on your mountain bike. But maybe avoid flying down those downhill trails until they get the hang of it.

No bias here. Time Out picks the best bike trails to view fall foliage. But somehow doesn’t manage to name anything west of Texas.

A Seattle man speaks out after a bike cop was caught on video rolling a bicycle over his head during a racial justice protest, saying he was roughed up by arresting officers after the incident, and received no medical attention during the four hours he spent behind bars.

Washington bike riders will now be able to treat stop signs as yields, as the state becomes just the latest to adopt a modified form of the Idaho Stop Law. California should join Oregon and Washington in adopting the law, making it uniform throughout the West Coast.

Denver bike riders are scouring homeless encampments looking for their stolen bicycles.

A Nebraska bike nonprofit is looking for a new home after losing their current location; the organization rescues and restores bicycles, and allows at-risk kids to work on them to earn their first bikes.

He gets it. A Houston writer explains that ghost bikes are memorials to the failure of drivers to pay attention to the road around them.

Michigan conducted a bike safety enforcement crackdown of their own earlier this month, ticketing 186 motorists and giving warnings to 116 drivers and 117 bike riders.

Usage stats for New York’s bridges show the bike boom is still going strong, with ridership up as much as 88 percent over March’s pre-pandemic levels.

 

International

How to maintain your ebike.

Cycling Weekly offers advice on how to keep your bike safe at home. My best advice is to keep your bike inside your home if at all possible; if you have to use a garage, make sure it’s locked to something that’s secretly anchored.

A new bike wheel promises to literally suck the smog out of the air from all those stinky cars around you.

A new Brit bike taillight flashes brighter to warn drivers when they’re too close.

In the latest non-scandal to hit the UK, a London councilmember admits he wants to take advantage of the Covid-19 traffic slowdown to make popup bike lanes and street closures permanent. Which was kind of the idea behind the whole thing to begin with.

Stardom has changed life for the better for the 15-year old Indian girl who rode a bike over 700 miles to carry her injured father home earlier this year; she now has a new home, eight bikes, two possible movie deals and an offer to train with the national cycling team when the pandemic loses its grip.

A South African man says he barely survived a bike-jacking when a masked gunman fired at him, because the gun jammed; he was able to escape a second shot on his bike.

A Kiwi writer with a cool name discusses the humiliating yet thrilling experience of learning how to ride a bike as an adult.

A new book argues that Australian police botched the investigation into the death of endurance cyclist Mike Hall during the 2017 Indian Pacific Wheel Race across the continent; Hall was killed by a 19-year old provisional driver, who police absolved of responsibility by claiming Hall was hard to see, despite an array of ultrabright taillights.

 

Finally…

Your next ebike could be a Beemer — although I like this one better. Before you build a new bike path, maybe make sure you own the land.

And anyone can ride across the country. But how many can claim they rode from Poo Poo Point to Pee Pee Creek?

………

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

Strava data shows LA bike rate double last year’s; and gun charges yes, but nothing for driving through Pasadena protesters

One quick note. 

Santa Monica Spoke founder Cynthia Rose informs me that the 5 mph speed limit signs on the beachfront bike path we mentioned on Monday was installed temporarily for a construction project, and have been removed. 

So that’s one bit of good news to start your day. 

Photo by Ekrulila from Pexels.

………

Apparently, LA’s bike boom wasn’t an illusion.

According to Strava data, bicycle use in bike-unfriendly Los Angeles nearly doubled in May, jumping 93% over this time last year.

Among the six U.S. cities for which Strava provided data, Houston and Los Angeles, two sprawling metropolises where just .5% and 1% of the respective populations biked to work in pre-pandemic times, stand out. In Houston, the total volume of cycling trips in Houston was 138% higher in May 2020 than in May 2019. In Los Angeles, the jump was 93%. Unlike their peers, these two places also saw cycling increases in April, the first full month of widespread stay-at-home order and economic shutdowns.

Never mind that Strava is still used by a subset of bike riders, meaning the actual numbers could be even higher, as the LACBC’s Eli Akira Kaufman points out.

Eli Akira Kaufman, the executive director of the L.A. County Bicycle Coalition, said the data also likely leaves out many of the essential workers he’s observed hopping on bikes instead of the bus, which could mean that the numbers are even higher than what the Strava data shows. Now his thoughts are towards the future. Cities like Houston and L.A., with their thousands of miles of car-oriented streets, have their work cut out building protected bike lanes and other infrastructure to encourage cycling even after the pandemic ends

“How do we keep the riding coming?” he said. “That’s the question now.”

The obvious answer to that is to provide a safe, convenient and connected network of bikeways that allows riders to traverse the city, and their own neighborhoods.

Which is exactly what LA’s three-tiered 2010 bike plan, now part of the city’s Mobility Plan 2035, calls for.

And exactly what Los Angeles isn’t doing.

Meanwhile, bikes are still booming, as SoCal bike shops report double and triple their normal sales.

………

This is who we share the roads with, protest edition.

A San Marino man who drove through a group of peaceful Pasadena protestors last month has been charged with conspiracy to transport firearms across state lines, as well as making a false statement to police.

During a search of Hung’s truck, police found a loaded semiautomatic handgun, multiple high-capacity magazines loaded with ammunition, an 18-inch machete, $3,200 in cash, a long metal pipe and a megaphone, according to the affidavit.

Evidently, endangering innocent people with a motor vehicle is just dandy, though.

………

This is who we share the roads with, hit-and-run edition.

The LAPD is looking for a hit-and-run driver who ran down a 70-year old woman in Chinatown as she walked in a crosswalk with the right-of-way, leaving her with a brain bleed and a broken neck.

Security video shows the heartless coward get out of his Mercedes to look at the victim, then get back in and simply drive away.

As usual, there is a $25,000 standing reward for any hit-and-run that results in serious injuries in the City of Los Angeles.

Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.

………

Streets for All has released their endorsements and Voter Guide for the November election, in both English y Español.

………

They get it.

………

LADOT has begun work on a curb-protected Complete Streets project on Reseda Blvd in Reseda and Northridge.

………

Then there’s this.

Secure bike parking is a good thing. But maybe we can do a better job of considering the needs of disabled riders next time.

………

Germans know how to promote World Car Free Day.

https://twitter.com/BirgitHebein/status/1308390818756079618

That tweet translates to,

Take public transport, walk or cycle and thus set an example for more space in the city.

………

It’s not everyday a hospital ad is worth sharing.

………

Bike stunts, without the bike.

………

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

A London bike rider suffered a broken shoulder when a road raging bus driver allegedly swerved into him, knocking him off his bike; passengers on the bus reportedly begged the hit-and-run driver to stop.

An Aussie man faces charges for pushing a friend in a shopping cart into a group of bicyclists traveling at over 25 mph, taking out a number of riders. The man, who had been drinking for a dozen hours, claims his actions weren’t deliberate and he just lost control of the cart, despite how it looks on security cam video.

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

In a tragic story from Milwaukee, a 54-year old man was fatally gunned down by a bike rider in a dispute over a traffic “mishap.” There is no excuse for violence, especially at the risk of someone’s life. Just suck it up and ride away, already.

………

Local

Los Angeles joined with New York, London, Berlin and eight other cities in Europe and North America in pledging to divest from fossil fuel companies to fight climate change.

LADOT wants your help in identifying low-stress travel corridors in Central Los Angeles.

A new self-guided audio bike tour through DTLA leads you through the hidden histories of Latino Los Angeles, while the slower pace on a bike allows you to take it all in.

Metro is pulling the plug on its smart bike bikeshare program on LA’s Westside, replacing them with “classic” bikeshare bikes in Venice, Palms, Playa Vista and Santa Monica, while adding nine more docks.

REI is offering adult classes on how to ride bike in Redondo Beach next month, as well as one-on-one adult instruction in Redondo Beach and Santa Monica; the outdoor co-op is also offering kid’s classes in Santa Monica.

 

State

California Governor Gavin Newsom issued an executive order banning the sale of gasoline-powered vehicles in the state by 2035. Unfortunately, he didn’t take any action to encourage bike riding, walking or transit use to make those vehicles unnecessary.

Hold your pony in check. Newport Beach adopts an ordinance aimed at ebike users on the city’s boardwalk, stating that no one may exceed the posted 8 mph speed limit, regardless of what they’re riding.

Orange County sheriff’s deputies will crack down on traffic safety violations that endanger bicyclists and pedestrians in Dana Point today, regardless of who commits them. The usual protocol applies — ride to the letter of the law until you cross the city limit lines, so you’re not the one who gets ticketed.

San Diego’s new Mid-City Bikeway project is nearly half-finished, as the city unveiled eight new traffic circles installed to improve safety at intersections.

Condolences to San Diego bike riders, who will soon be stuck with the city’s first sharrows on a three block section of Hancock Street. As we’ve said before, sharrows only serve to help drivers improve their aim in an effort to thin the bike riding herd.

Our friend Michael Wagner of CLR Effect visited Santa Barbara’s newly closed State Street, saying restaurants and businesses are benefitting from the carfree foot and bike traffic, and comparing it to a 24/7 CicLAvia. Which sounds like a damn good idea to me.

I’ve found lots of things while riding a bike. Fortunately, a human skull on a Tahoe bike trail ain’t one of them.

 

National

Good news for my fellow diabetics, as a new study shows bike riding reduces cardiovascular mortality in diabetes, as well as mortality risk from all causes. If the coronavirus doesn’t get us first, that is.

The Verge visits the makers of Rain-Bow bike fenders.

C|net reviews Garmin’s new rearview bike radar systems and rides away impressed.

Mashable says Ridepanda is your one-stop shop for all things ebike and e-scooter.

Specialized gets spanked by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, which has rejected the company’s trademark application for its latest bike, ruling it’s too similar to a tire brand.

Singer-songwriter Laura Veirs is one of us, riding her bike “all over Portland” to cope with her divorce after 20 years of marriage.

A manager with the Washington Traffic Safety Commission patiently explains why allowing bike riders to treat stops signs as yields is better for everyone.

Add this one to your bike bucket list, with an easy bike tour around Aspen and Snowmass, Colorado.

A new Indianapolis mural will honor Black cycling legend Major Taylor — even if it means removing another mural that has been there for 45 years.

Kindhearted Connecticut cops pitched in to buy a little boy a new bike after his was stolen.

A New York State assembly member says the state must subsidize ebike purchases. The same goes for California, except more so.

Nearly 130 people rode their bikes 300 miles from New York to DC last month to protest police brutality and racial injustice as part of the March on Washington. As usual, you can read the story on Yahoo if you’re blocked by Bicycling’s draconian paywall.

DC adopts a Vision Zero bill intended to eliminate traffic deaths within the next four years, including plans for red light and stop sign cams, as well as bus lane cameras. Let’s hope they have better luck with it than we did, since LA’s Vision Zero has devolved into a nearly forgotten footnote in city history.

I want to be like him when I grow up, too. A Georgia man on the cusp of 90 has been buying and refurbishing bicycles for the past decade, giving away the finished bikes to children, schools and charities.

They get it, too. Miami is planning to permanently ban cars from the city’s beachfront Ocean Drive, while prioritizing pedestrians first in the city’s entertainment district, followed by bicyclists and transit, with personal vehicles last.

 

International

Medical staff with Britain’s National Health Service continue to be targeted by bike thieves, as one man has now had two bikes stolen in just the past three months.

Electric cars won’t solve the UK’s pollution problem. Or California’s, for that matter.

Blue-tired, Netherlands-based Swapfiets is reportedly taking Europe by storm with its long-term bike rental business model, and a promise to fix your flats for you.

Cyprus intends to invest half a million euros to encourage more people to walk and bike. However, that only equates to $585,000, which won’t go very far.

Los Angeles could soon get lapped by Tehran, as Dutch officials offer recommendations to get the city on the right track for bicycling, while noting that several Iranian cities have the potential to be bike friendly.

Talk about not getting it. A Philippine city is considering a proposal to mandate helmets and reflectorized vests for bike riders, as well as limiting riders to carrying minimal loads, since “bicycles are not designed to carry much cargo.” Which would come as a hell of a surprise to many bike commuters and cargo bike owners.

 

Competitive Cycling

Rouleur profiles Trinidadian cycling star Teniel Campbell, saying she’s on the brink of breaking big in women’s cycling.

Red Bull shares the playlists that get mountain bike, ‘cross and cross-country pros ready to ride.

Former Vuelta and Giro winner Nairo Quintana has denied any wrongdoing in a doping investigation targeting members of his entourage. Then again, that’s what Lance said. And Landis. And Contador. And…

 

Finally…

If you’re going to propose on the Brooklyn Bridge, tell your photographer to stay out of the bike lane. If you didn’t drive on a narrow bike trail, your Jeep wouldn’t need to be rescued in the first place; thanks to David Drexler for the heads-up.

And you be you.

https://twitter.com/CarHelmets/status/1308499866411134977

………

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

5 mph speed limit on SaMo bike path, Kizzee protestors sue Sheriff, and bike rider gives his life to save his daughter

They’ve got to be kidding.

David Drexler writes that Santa Monica has finally installed a curb separating bike riders and pedestrians on the newly widened Marvin Braude bike path through the city’s beaches.

But at the same time, they’ve installed a ridiculous 5 mph speed limit on the pathway, which is a fast walking pace, and slower than most people run. And almost half the 8 mph speed limit in Hermosa Beach.

Never mind that, as he points out, it’s hard to ride a bike that slowly without falling over, even on a cruiser bike.

Just more evidence of biking rules being set by people who’ve never ridden one.

Photos by David Drexler.

………

Los Angeles County protestors aren’t backing down in the ongoing street confrontations with the Sheriff’s Department.

A group of people have filed for a temporary restraining order against the LASD’s use of nonlethal weapons during sometimes violent crackdowns against protestors following the shooting of Compton bike rider Dijon Kizzee.

Deputies have insisted that they are justified in cracking down on the protests, citing things like bike helmets and shields as proof of protestors’ violent intent.

Meanwhile, the people protesting Kizzee’s shooting have decried what they consider heavy-handed assaults on largely peaceful protestors.

It’s hard to say who’s right, since the department has gone out of its way to intimidate and arrest legitimate members of the press.

Meanwhile, bike riders in many parts of the county continue to express a fear of being harassed or arrested by sheriff’s deputies for Biking while Black or Brown.

Which is something no one should ever have to fear.

Let alone experience.

………

Once again, a bike rider was a hero.

Tragically, this time.

A 45-year old Tracy CA man was riding bikes with his nine-year old daughter when a speeding driver suddenly drove directly towards them; his final act was urging his daughter to safety before the careening car took his life.

Compounding the tragedy, the formerly two lane street where the crash occurred has suffered from speeding drivers since being widened to four lanes earlier this year.

We’ll never know if he and his daughter might have both made it home to their family if it hadn’t been.

And someone should ask Sacramento’s ABC10 why it took until the next-to-last of 17 paragraphs in their story to mention that the damn car even had a driver.

………

A frequent bike rider, who asked not to be named, forwarded this dashcam video taken during a recent drive through Santa Monica, demonstrating why stopping for red lights matters.

Or at least observing the right-of-way.

………

A new short film documents life in Los Angeles for people on two wheels, with a veritable who’s who of LA bike luminaries.

………

Former pro Phil Gaimon explains why bicyclists ride in the road, answering the question countless clueless drivers have hurled at him over the years.

Got to hand it to Gaimon.

He may not have set the world on fire in the pro peloton, but he’s become one of the most effective and entertaining ex-pros after retiring.

………

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

No bias here. A BBC crime program ostensibly about bike theft wasted its time with an unrelated call for mandatory helmets for bike riders. Call me crazy, but even 100% helmet compliance would do nothing to stop the theft of a single bicycle.

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

Police arrested a San Mateo CA man as he attempted to flee by bike after shooting up his neighbors’ mobile homes, then barricading himself inside his trailer.

………

Local

You could get the Bird for your birthday or some other special event. Or just buy your own from the Santa Monica-based company for the low, low price of $599.

Pasadena police ticketed 79 drivers during the city’s latest bike and pedestrian safety crackdown, along with 12 bicycle riders and 12 pedestrians.

 

State

More bad news from Northern California, where a San Jose bike rider was killed in a collision Sunday night.

No surprise here, as Bay Area advocates complain about city officials and employees speeding in San Francisco and willfully blocking safety infrastructure in Oakland.

Good news for Bay Area bike riders, as Colorado’s bike-friendly New Belgian Brewery is establishing its first West Coast outlet in San Francisco’s Mission Bay.

San Francisco authorities are struggling to identify a hospitalized man who was seriously injured when he was hit by a driver while riding his bike. This is why you should always have some form of ID that’s not likely to get lost or stolen when you ride your bike. I always wear my RoadID, but you can also carry a card with your name and emergency contact information.

 

National

Tech Crunch likes the new Lumos smart helmet.

Now we’re getting somewhere. A small DIY ebike conversion kit attaches to the disk brake mount on your mountain bike — although it will set you back nearly two grand.

A rider for Jalopnik is fascinated by the process when he takes an old steel Schwinn to an expert framebuilder to have his broken frame repaired.

Four years after an Iowa collision in the middle of a coast-to-coast bike ride left a man confined to a wheelchair, he’s back to finish the ride using a handcycle. And raising funds for a cancer charity.

Kindhearted cops bought a pair of new bikes for a couple of Detroit sisters after learning the girls had to share a single bicycle.

New York bike riders will be on their own, as city officials plan to close part of the Hudson River Greenway for reconstruction work with no safety provisions for riders forced to detour onto the streets; the pathway is the busiest bike path in North America. Which is saying something for anyone who’s ever tried to ride the Venice bike path on a holiday weekend.

A Philly bike messenger offers advice on how to bike commute with confidence. Although that the last bit of advice to “Act like you’re in a car,” could taking up too much space, emitting noxious gasses, and threatening everyone else on the road. And yes, you can read it on Yahoo if you’ve been blocked by Bicycling’s draconian firewall. Which kind of makes you wonder what’s the point of having it.

A Virginia billboard honors five-year old Cannon Hinnant, who was fatally shot point blank by a neighbor for the crime of riding a bicycle on his lawn earlier this year.

In a near mirror image of the Tracy crash, an angry Florida family wants to find the hit-and-run driver who injured a seven-year old boy as he was riding bikes with his father.

 

International

Cycling News explains the difference between mountain and gravel bikes.

Vancouver has just quadrupled the fine for dooring a bike rider. Although the new $368 fine still seems too low. And that’s Canadian dollars.

A British military vet says losing his right arm and shoulder in a motorcycle crash is the best thing that ever happened to him, after competing as a paracyclist in the Invictus Games and becoming an advocate for positive body images.

Owners of Belgium’s Cowboy ebikes will get a free GPS-enabled crash detection system through a software update to alert emergency contacts with their exact location; the company says the risk of a false alarm is “near zero.”

Berlin police are engaged in a bicycle and pedestrian safety crackdown of their own in the face of a rising traffic death toll.

Great idea. Mumbai bike riders can get free emergency IDs issued by the city to provide their name and emergency contacts, as well as doctors and vital health information, in the event of a crash. That San Francisco unidentified bicyclist could have used something like that.

 

Competitive Cycling

Cycling News looks back at eight memorable moments from this year’s Tour de France.

Tour de France winner Tadej Pogačar ditched his power meter and relied on the Force for the pivotal ascent during Saturday’s time trial. Okay, so maybe the Force reference was just a metaphor.

French judicial authorities are investigating doping accusations against Colombian cyclist Nairo Quintana’s Arkea-Samsic team, as well as entourage members who aren’t actually with the team. However, that does not necessarily mean Quintana or other team leaders have been implicated. Good thing the era of doping is over though. Right?

 

Finally…

Evidently, even mountain lions like to watch kids ride bikes — unless maybe they’re just looking for dinner. Who needs to actually ride a mountain bike when you can just play it on your phone?

And when you’re carrying funny money, oxy laced with fentanyl, pipes, scales, knives and brass knuckles on your bike, put a damn light on it, already.

And poop before you go out.

Seriously.

………

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

Warning for Camp Pendleton bike riders, California Guard guards SaMo bikeways, and more shredding on mountain bikes

Let’s start today with a warning from Caltrans for Camp Pendleton bike riders.

This message is a reminder to all cyclists traveling through Camp Pendleton to stay on the bike path at all times. Camp Pendleton is an active training base and it operates 24/7 conducting training. Venturing off the bike path could expose civilians to unsafe conditions.

The Camp Pendleton Community Plan Liaison informed Caltrans that cyclists were observed on the landing zone just off of the bike path (see map attached). A military helicopter that had been approaching the landing zone had to abort its landing to avoid injuring the cyclists that had trespassed military grounds. To ensure the safety of civilian cyclists and military members of Camp Pendleton, please stay on the bike path. The bike path is the only area where cyclists are allowed on Camp Pendleton. Cyclist and Caltrans are allowed on Camp Pendleton through permits approved by the military, to ensure cyclist access continues, please follow the rules set by the Camp Pendleton staff.

For everyone’s safety, please pass this message along to fellow cyclists, and if you see anyone diverging into military property, please let them know to stay on the bike path.

Seriously, that could have been a disaster.

And failure to stick to the rules could result in everyone getting banned from the base, which would also be a disaster.

Thanks to Robert Leone for forwarding the message.

Today’s photo come from David Drexler, showing a newly reopened, extra wide Marvin Bruade bike path in Santa Monica.

………

Drexler also forwarded photos from last week’s unrest in Santa Monica, showing what he calls the world’s safest bikeways on Ocean and Colorado, with the streets guarded by California National Guard troops.

Although that’s not exactly what I’d call inviting.

………

Let’s take another quick shredding break this morning, with mountain biking videos from Argentina…

Switzerland…

And New Zealand.

………

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

You’ve got to be kidding. After a Russian driver slammed into a 12-year old bike rider, leaving him with serious, long-lasting injuries, the coldhearted driver sued the kid for scratching her car — and won.

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

Police in Atlanta are looking for a bike-riding robber who fired shots inside a check cashing business.

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Local

Over 1,000 people turned out for a bike ride and march through the Crenshaw District last weekend, described as a demonstration of love by and for black men.

Coldplay frontman Chris Martin is one of us, riding his mountain bike through the ‘Bu.

 

State

No, drivers can’t legally blare on their horns to show their displeasure, whether with other drivers or people on bicycles. But good luck getting anyone to enforce it.

Calbike examines how Californians can support endangered community bike shops.

Faux Danish city Solvang is getting in on the Slow Streets movement, temporarily closing a main street through the city’s business district to motor vehicles.

Ranchers in tiny Red Bluff — population 14,000 — are holding a Ride Against All Racism this Sunday, and inviting people to walk or bike along if you don’t have a horse.

Critical Mass continues its monthly takeover of the streets of San Francisco.

Consider it the world’s most beautiful ciclovía. Yosemite’s Tioga Road opens to bike riders this weekend, before it’s opened to cars on Monday.

 

National

A new study shows short sprints during your ride can help keep your muscles healthy.

Bike lawyer Bob Mionske looks at whether bike shops are essential services during the lockdown. Which should be an obvious yes, but isn’t always.

Nearly 2,000 Portland people turned out for a ride to support Black Girls Do Bike’s call for racial justice.

Once again, bike riders are heroes, after a group of Seattle riders used their bicycles and bodies to protect protesters from a driver who intentionally tried to smash into the demonstrators.

A Chicago columnist says the city’s first shared street is great, but it isn’t the long-lasting change they need.

A bighearted Michigan dentist donated $15,000 worth of free dental work to the 18-year old black man who had his front teeth knocked out by a bigoted white man using a bike chain.

A DC bike rider takes it on himself to clear broken glass from a bike lane by hand.

Marchers in Charlotte NC turned to people on bicycles to carry supplies and keep order at the ongoing protests following the death of George Floyd.

The Florida legislature passed a bill allowing ebikes on any road, path or sidewalk where regular bicycles are allowed; now it’s up to the state’s Republican governor to sign into law, or not.

 

International

British singer Sophie Ellis-Bextor explains her recent bicycling injuries came when she swerved to avoid someone on a Thames River pathway and fell off her bike, without a helmet, smacking her head on the concrete down below. Which serves as a reminder that slow speed falls are exactly what bike helmets are designed for, not collisions with motor vehicles.

A former Welsh rugby star raised the equivalent of over $176,000 by riding his bike 1,000 miles last month, benefitting the cancer center that helped him beat testicular cancer.

Heartbreaking story from the UK, where a father went looking for his 14-year old son when he didn’t return from a bike ride, and found him being treated by paramedics as the boy lay dying in the street, the victim of a speeding driver.

A new study shows Great Britain could face a “traffic tsunami” as people turn to their cars to avoid public transit. Which is exactly what we’ve been warning about over here.

No surprise here, as over two-thirds of people in Brussels, Belgium, want more space for people walking and biking, as well as public transit, and less devoted to motor vehicles.

Only 20% of bicycling injuries on Belgian and Dutch roads involve a motor vehicle.

Slovenia invites you to discover the country by bicycle.

An Indian paper says bicycles have empowered women, revolutionized fashion, cleared the air, and led to…glowing skin? Seriously?

Tel Aviv is planning to double the amount of the city’s bikeways over the next year, hoping to avoid becoming another Los Angeles.

 

Competitive Cycling

Team USA announced the preliminary road, mountain biking and track cycling teams for the delayed Tokyo Olympics, assuming the pandemic is under control and they actually take place next year.

Apparently, this is Legion of Los Angeles week. Team founder Justin Williams makes the news once again, as the former US track, time trial and road cycling champ discussed Lance, and Lance’s former team manager Johan Bruyneel, on Williams new podcast. Meanwhile, the crowdfunding page for the LA-based diversity-themed cycling team has raised over $101,000 — doubling the original $50,000 goal.

 

Finally…

Get your kids started early with a BMW balance bike. Now you, too, can own a handcrafted Dutch supercar and matching bicycle, along with your very own airline seats — minus the plane.

And that feeling when a pair of tire blowouts save your life.

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Thanks to Dennis E for his generous donation to help support this site, and keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way every day. 

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

New Broadway protected bike lane could be final Santa Monica bike project; DTLA 7th ST protected bike lane moves forward

A special thanks to Los Angeles Bicycle Attorneys Josh and Paul Cohen of Cohen Law Partners for renewing their sponsorship for the coming year. 

They join title sponsors Pocrass & De Los Reyes in renewing their support, despite these troubling economic times. 

It’s their sponsorship that allows me to do what I do, and bring you the latest and best bike news on a daily basis. 

Without their support — and yes, yours — this site would not be possible, at least in its present form. 

Now saddle up, because we’ve got a lot of ground to cover.

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Let’s start in Santa Monica, where good things are happening.

And not so good.

On the plus side, David Drexler sends word that the city has taken advantage of the slow traffic during the coronavirus shutdown to install parking protected bike lanes on a short section of Broadway.

Look at this, a gift to cyclists from Santa Monica. They took advantage of the low corona traffic to redo Broadway thus far from 20th Street west a few blocks. They moved the parking away from the curb and replaced it with a very protected bike lane on both sides. These photos were a taken at 19th and Broadway. Not sure how far they will extend it. It goes from 20th to the Santa Monica food coop right now, then the old green lane picks up there.

The picture of the G on the ground is probably where they will pain green.

It makes cycling much safer in those lanes than the ones next to traffic, I feel. Hope they do more.

On the other side of the ledger, Santa Monica is planning to make drastic cuts to city funding in response to the loss of sales tax revenue due to the lockdown.

Advocacy group Santa Monica Spoke joins with other organizations to warn that excessive cuts to the transportation department could imperil the safety of vulnerable road users, as well as any post-pandemic economic recovery.

Santa Monica’s economy depends on a functioning transportation network that safely moves people, goods and services. Current proposed budget cuts will be destructive to transportation work, will disable basic functions, and slow our safe recovery from this pandemic. Transportation staff, infrastructure and services are classified as essential government functions* and perform vital functions that literally keep our community running safely. These cuts will damage safety and the very fabric of services and programs that we depend on living in Santa Monica…

These essential life saving functions are under threat with extreme plans to cut over half of the City Transportation and Mobility Division compared to 20-40% across other departments. While we can only imagine the stress and burden of decisions weighing on City Council, this level of cuts would severely impact basic public safety and infrastructure operation functions, wounding our city’s ability to rebound fiscally from the COVID-19 crisis. It is imperative to be strategic. We must consider the holistic dynamic relationships, dependencies and functions that contribute to safety, economic stability and regrowth. While the City suffers catastrophic shortfalls, we should not use a sledgehammer where a scalpel is needed to balance new budgets. Council needs to take time to cut costs strategically, while maintaining essential staff that would facilitate a safe and secure path to economic recovery and resilience.

As part of the cutbacks, Santa Monica plans to cut all bike, pedestrian and Vision Zero funding for the next year.

Which means those Broadway protected bike lanes may be the last we’ll see for awhile.

The Santa Monica City Council will hold a virtual council meeting tomorrow to discuss the proposed budget cuts.

Santa Monica Spoke urges you to contact the councilmembers to demand continued funding of the Transportation Department, and ongoing support for bicycle, pedestrian and Vision Zero projects.

Because lives depend on it.

And the proposed cuts are more than just a scratch.

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Evidently, Vision Zero isn’t completely dead in the City of Angels.

Just badly wounded.

The program is rising from a premature grave, as LADOT invites you to attend a free public workshop to discuss plans to fix 7th Street in DTLA.

And about damn time, since the existing bike lane is largely unrideable much of the time, and usually serves as nothing more than free parking in front of the Bloc shopping mall.

And the only rule governing traffic on 7th seems to be to aim for the soft, squishy people instead of the cold, hard cars.

You can learn more about the project here.

Thanks to Kent Strumpell for the heads-up.

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Meanwhile, Streets For All offers a glimpse of what could be if LA actually remembers it has an already-approved Mobility Plan.

https://twitter.com/streetsforall/status/1256351201462870017

You can see a larger, interactive version of the above map here.

And here’s the link to the petition, since the link in the tweet is broken.

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Bike Angeles examines some unexpected improvements along a two-mile stretch of Vineland Ave in North Hollywood.

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This is why we can’t have nice things.

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When a bike rider hits a pedestrian, it usually end badly for both parties.

Which is exactly what happened in Berkeley on Saturday, where a 55-year old man on a bike crashed into a 60-year old woman, leaving both victims in critical condition.

Although it’s not clear how it happened, since police say he was riding in the street and she was standing on the sidewalk; a witness says the man on the bike must have had “mental issues.”

The same thing happened in Minneapolis, where a pedestrian is in critical condition and a bicyclist seriously injured following a crash.

Anyone who’s ridden for awhile can tell you it’s not always the bike rider’s fault in a situation like that; people are unpredictable, and can step out into the street without looking for someone on a bicycle.

But it’s always our obligation to ride carefully around pedestrians, because they’re the only ones more vulnerable than we are. And be prepared to stop or swerve to avoid crashing into someone.

Especially if you’re riding on a sidewalk.

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This working from home thing might just catch on after all.

https://twitter.com/cycling_woman/status/1255909638907846659

Thanks to W Corylus for the link.

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Maybe it’s not the best idea to draft a dump truck in heavy traffic.

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

Nashville police are looking for a goateed, bike-riding miscreant who smashed a jewelry store window with a cinderblock and made off with over 200 rings. Although as someone who spent a decade in the jewelry business, I’d question why the window wasn’t shatterproof glass, and the rings in a safe after hours.

A Scottish thief made off on his bike after taking over 100 wedding rings worth more that $124,000 in a grab and run.

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Local

Streetsblog examines the massive failure of LA city officials in cancelling a Slow Streets social distancing program in the Del Rey neighborhood, just hours after it was announced.

The LA Times says city officials think closing streets for social distancing just too risky, even though other cities throughout North America are doing exactly that. Evidently, they think we’re calling for CicLAvia-style street closures that would draw people from across the city, rather than closing a few streets in every neighborhood to allow people to get outside without risking their health and safety.

Dylan McDermott is one of us, as the Hollywood star went for a bike ride through Pacific Palisades with his family.

Santa Monica residents join the chorus of voices demanding safe space on the streets for social distancing.

 

State

A Chula Vista bike rider suffered a leg injury when he or she was was right hooked while riding in a crosswalk by a truck driver, who never bothered to look the direction he was turning.

Britney Spears is one of us, posting a photo showing her riding her bike with her boyfriend near her Thousand Oaks home in happier, pre-pandemic days.

A Santa Barbara bike rider is in critical condition after he was run down by what must have been a self-driving car, since the story does’t even mention a driver.

Bay Area bike shops can’t keep up with the demand as business booms during the coronavirus pandemic.

It takes a major schmuck to steal bikes and tools from a nonprofit San Jose bike co-op as they were preparing to reopen next week.

This is why you shouldn’t try to reclaim a stolen bike by yourself. A Santa Rosa man is recovering from stab wounds to his hand after he approached a man who was riding his stolen bike.

Sacramento will block or limit motor vehicle traffic on some streets to make more room for social distancing. On the other hand, San Jose says don’t hold your breath.

 

National

Yes, May is Bike Month, even if everything has been cancelled and too many cities won’t give an inch on the streets during the coronavirus pandemic. Including Los Angeles.

Zwift wants you to ride or walk in place to raise funds for Doctors Without Borders.

Bike Snob says road cycling isn’t dead after all, even if gravel is all the rage.

An eight-year old Honolulu boy got his stolen bike back after conservation officers spotted it outside a state park.

You don’t mess with an angry dog — or a grandfather. Reality TV star Dog the Bounty Hunter is offering a $1,000 reward for the “scum” who stole his granddaughter’s bike from the family garage in Hawaii.

A New York nurse continues to bike to work, even after she was hit by a driver.

We already know NFL quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is one of us. But apparently supporters of his new team are just figuring it out, as fans are shocked by his “absurd” 74-mile Florida ride.

 

International

People around the world are being encouraged to see bikes as a post coronavirus commuting option — when they’re not getting stopped by the cops for doing exactly that.

Bike historian Carlton Reid offers a warning from history despite the boom in bicycling during the Covid-19 lockdown. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

Bike Radar explains what muscles are used to ride a bike, and offers advice on what to wear when you ride one. Never mind that you can ride in anything from T-shirt and shorts to a three-piece suit. But the right clothes can make it a hell of a lot more comfortable.

Road.cc says you’re not a pro, so you don’t have to ride like one.

A nine-year old Ontario boy has set out on a 621-mile bike ride to raise funds for a local health foundation, riding roughly six miles a day.

When a Nova Scotia nursing home worker went to pick up her bike after having it repaired, the shop surprised her with a new bicycle to thank her for her work on the frontlines of the Covid-19 battle.

Speaking of rising from a near grave, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson returns from his extended absence due to Covid-19, and calls on the country’s mayors to take action to encourage bicycling and walking, and keep cars out of city centers.

Noel Gallagher is one of us, as the former Oasis singer and guitarist rode his bike near his English home, despite the country’s lockdown.

British band Glass Animals talks about the 2018 bicycling crash that nearly took the life of the band’s drummer and left him unable to walk, talk, eat, read or write for a time.

Members of a Scottish cycling club honored one of their own, lining the street with their bikes and club kits to show respect for a member who died of Covid-19.

A Catholic priest in the UK had to deliver his daily podcast and evening prayers as he walked home, after going out for a bike ride and suffering successive flats.

Just call it Strassenverkehrsordnungnovelle. Germany announced a raft of changes to traffic laws, including banning parking in bike lanes, allowing people to ride two abreast, and prohibiting drivers from passing bike riders or motorcycles in narrow areas.

Over 3,500 Slovenians rode their bikes in defiance of the lockdown to protest a ban on bike riding, as well as government interference in procuring protective gear and ventilators.

Tragic news from India, where a couple were killed in a collision along with two other people, after a kindhearted truck driver offered them a lift after riding 250 miles because they couldn’t find any other form of transportation.

An Indian op-ed calls for more space on the roads for people walking or biking, arguing that the biggest hurdle in making making it more popular in the country is a lack of necessary infrastructure.

Tokyo commuters are taking to their bikes to avoid the risk of infection on the city’s packed trains.

 

Competitive Cycling

A UK paper looks back at what they call the toughest bike race ever ridden, a snowy seven-stage, 1,300-mile race through the battlefields of the just-ended Great War, as well as in the middle of the Spanish Flu pandemic.

Apparently assuming Covid-19 will blow over by then, officials tell pro cyclists to be ready for an August 29th start for the Tour de France.

Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome says the race can work without spectators, but isn’t sure organizers can keep them away.

June’s mountain bike worlds was just the latest race to fall victim to the coronavirus, while September’s European road championships were put off until next year.

A British man raised the equivalent of $16,000 by riding the length of the Tour de France without ever leaving his apartment.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be a seatless Penny Farthing. Or long enough to let you maintain social distance from your tandem partner.

And when you’re drunk, riding salmon, and carrying an open container, at least put some damn lights on your bike.

And don’t fight with the cops that try to stop you.

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

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