Tag Archive for sexual harassment

Morning Links: Bike riding pervs and hit-and-run bike riders, LA stands in for NYC bikeshare, and cops in bike lanes

Today’s common theme is bike-riding sexual predators, and hit-and-run bike riders.

Sheriff’s deputies in Woodside CA are searching for a bike rider who grabbed a girl’s ass as she walked on a high school campus Monday night. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up. And no, there’s no effing excuse for that, ever.

A bike-riding Hungarian man will spend a well-deserved four years in a UK prison for groping 21 women as he rode by over a 13-week period.

Meanwhile, British police bust a hit-and-run bike rider after a collision with a 70-year old woman crossing the street that left the victim with what police describe as life-changing injuries.

And police in another English town are investigating a crash between a bike rider and a pedestrian that left the victim with a serious head injury.

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Either Downtown Los Angeles is once again standing in for New York, or New York bikeshare Citi Bike has decided to give LA’s Metro Bike a run for its money.

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LA cops just insist on parking in bike lanes.

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I want to be like him when I grow up.

An 82-year old Englishman is back on his mountain bike after beating cancer.

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Stop whatever you’re doing, and take two minutes to watch former BMX pro Matt Row rip through a Welsh mountain bike trail as if he was still riding a stunt bike.

It may just be the best thing you see today.

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Local

Los Angeles County dropped plans to ban e-scooters from the streets in unincorporated areas after discovering it wouldn’t stand up in court, ordering staff to draw up plans by March to regulate scooters instead.

I’m not a fan of Santa Clarita’s Head’s Up traffic safety campaign, but it may be working; traffic collisions are projected to drop 14% in the city last year.

As we enter our third consecutive day of rain, a floating bike might come in handy for SoCal bicyclists right about now. Just a suggestion.

State

No bias here. After a bike rider was struck by a Costa Mesa cop, the Daily Pilot questions whether the rider had “safety gear” or lights, but doesn’t question the driver’s actions in any way — or even mention one. Meanwhile, a new study points out six ways the media is still blaming the victims.

Mission Viejo will host a bike rodeo and workshop for the city’s Bikeway Master Plan on January 26th.

An op-ed from an Orange County healthcare consultant says better health is as easy as riding a bike.

Del Mar will be hosting the inaugural CABDA West bicycle expo this week, with 1,150 attendees from 410 bike shops.

The family of a fallen bicyclist calls for changes on the Fresno street where he was killed, blaming a lack of bike lanes and street lights for his death. Thanks to Frank Lehnerz for the tip.

San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo says he learned the hard way that SUVs don’t bend, as he returns to city hall two weeks after broadsiding one in a New Year’s bike crash. Thanks to Patt Morrison for the link.

San Jose transportation columnist Mr.Roadshow explains the what and why behind all those different bike markings on the street.

National

An engineering website says the only correct number of traffic deaths is zero.

Wired asks if advocates are selling out by going to work for tech companies as they move into the bike world. If you can call companies like Uber, Lyft and Lime tech companies.

Bike commuting appeared to spike in Seattle this week in the Emerald City’s version of Carmageddon, as the seaside Alaskan Way Viaduct was shut down, three weeks before the tunnel replacing it is set to open.

A new Seattle study shows that only 20% of dockless bikeshare riders wear helmets despite the city’s mandatory helmet law, compared to 90% of riders using their own bikes.

A bighearted Wyoming man has given away over 7,000 bicycles in the last two years; he started the Lauralynn Project after giving an extra bike to a woman who had one stolen, then bought two more for her kids.

Dallas plans to increase the amount of bike lanes in the city to accommodate new dockless bikeshare, ebikes and e-scooters.

An Ohio driver pled guilty to vehicular manslaughter in the death of a bike rider, even though he claimed the sun was in his eyes. Which is usually a Get Out of Jail Free excuse for most motorists, even though it shouldn’t be.

A 34-year old Tennessee woman dropped 160 pounds by getting on her bike after her father died from a heart attack.

A New York state woman faces charges after lying to the police; she allegedly struck a ten-year old boy with her car, then walked up to police officers investigating the crash and told them the driver fled in another direction.

Life is cheap in New York, where a garbage truck driver who killed a bike-riding Australian tourist walked with just a $1,000 fine despite drinking beer before driving, after prosecutors couldn’t prove he was drunk.

Talk about not getting it. A Virginia letter writer says Vision Zero is just a plot to increase congestion and force more cars off the street.

Heartbreaking story. Bicycling asks who has the right to remove a ghost bike, as a Virginia property owner ignores a mother’s pain and removes the ghost bike honoring her daughter, even though it wasn’t on his property.

A Florida newspaper compares bicycling versus running, and concludes that running burns more calories, but bicycling is safer. They also note that Men’s Health says you can expect to crash on your bike just once every 900,000 miles. Which means I’m way above average.

International

The Sierra Club profiles a woman who got back on a bike for the first time in 12 years after leaving Iran for Canada, and has no intention of getting off.

Good piece from a BC planning student, who says we can do a lot more to improve safety on our streets — starting with dumping the big trucks and SUVs.

Caught on video: This is how easy it is for British bike thieves to steal a $5,000 ebike.

Bike Europe calls for action to fight a plan to require liability insurance to ride an ebike on the continent.

Here’s one for your mountain bike bucket list — shredding the trails of Italy’s South Sardinia.

The town of Karditsa has become one Greece’s most bike friendly cities, with one bicycle for every two residents.

Two men from Nepal were arrested in Tokyo after getting drunk, stealing a bicycle and placing it on a set of train tracks, where it was run over, damaging the train and delaying morning commuters. Must have seemed like a good idea at the time.

A Singaporean bike rider and the truck driver who rammed him off the in a viral road rage video last month are both facing serious charges as a result of the clash.

The South China Morning Post says blockchain can save what’s left of the dockless bikeshare industry following the collapse of Chinese bikeshare providers.

Competitive Cycling

Good news from Italy, where 18-year old junior cyclist Samuele Manfredi has come out of a medically induced coma, a month after he was run over by a driver while on a training ride.

The Australian Broadcast Network says descending at over 60 mph remains one of cycling’s greatest tests of nerve.

Outside writes that pros won’t ruin gravel racing. Probably.

Finally…

Probably not the best idea to punch a bike thief if he didn’t really steal your bike. Riding your bike without handlebars is now officially reckless.

And how to tell when you’re wheelie bad.

Monday morning meditations from a muddled mind — hit-and-runs, Bob Filner and podium girls

Sometimes there’s just too much swirling around my head to focus on any one thing. And not enough coffee in all the Starbucks in all of LA to clarify things.

Which is exactly where I am this morning.

A day when I can breath a sign of relief that my morning search for bike news didn’t turn up any major bad news for SoCal cyclists. Although the word from other places near and far isn’t nearly as good.

And you’d think that an old man using a walker would be able to cross a damn LA street without getting run down by some jackass who doesn’t have the basic human decency to stop his or her goddamn car after killing another human being.

Drivers continue to flee the scene of collisions because current law means even if they do get caught, they’re better off getting charged for hit-and-run than DUI, or may not have a valid license and insurance for whatever reason.

Then again, some drivers just bet that they can get away with it.

And usually do.

Not to mention we seem to live in a society that has lost sight of the value of human life.

And all of those things have to change before anything else will.

Then again, it would help if the press took the matter more seriously. Or at least cared enough to dig a little deeper and get the story right.

As for insurance, there was a proposal several years back to include basic state-run liability coverage for every motorist in the cost of gas. Whenever you paid at the pump, a fee would be added to ensure that every victim of every collision would be protected from every driver.

Which means you’d never again have to worry how you’re going to pay your mounting medical bills after some driver ran you into the ground.

Needless to say, it didn’t go anywhere, for any number of reasons, valid and otherwise. Not the least of which was that bad drivers would pay the same rate as good ones, even though they could receive supplemental billing to make up for a lack of driving ability. Never mind that the state should be focused on getting bad drivers off the streets.

Plus some provision would have to be made for electric and hybrid vehicles. And state run auto insurance sounded a lot like communism to some people.

Then there’s the news from our neighbor to the south that scumbag Mayor Bob Filner is stepping down at the end of this week.

Political leaders have long felt entitled to do anything they damn well pleased when it came to sexual behavior. Mostly because no one held them accountable for much of American history.

Though you’d think the long line of embarrassed elected leaders stretching from Gary Hart through Bill Clinton and onto New York’s Anthony Weiner would convince them to keep their damn zippers closed in inappropriate situations.

All of which would appear to have little to do with bicycling.

Except Weiner had tried, with varying success, to reposition himself as a bike-friendly candidate after earlier threatening to tear out New York’s bike lanes. And appeared to be winning some support before the latest round of sexting revelations.

And San Diego has been making great strides under Filner’s leadership to reverse decades of benign — and sometimes, not so benign — neglect of bicyclists.

Which may, or may not, continue under the next administration that replaces him.

Thanks, Bob.

No, really.

At least there’s better news from my home state, where a new generation of bike racers took center stage. Colorado’s Tejay van Garderen took first place and Peter Sagan won four of the seven stages, while Christian Vande Velde called it a career at yet another successful USA Pro Challenge.

Even though the race continues to allow women just token participation, while demonstrating that the best way for a woman to get on a racing podium is to put on a tight dress and kiss the winner when the race is over.

And if any local bike shops are thinking about using podium girls at any races you might sponsor, don’t.

Just don’t.

And yes, I’m talking to you.

Think of the message you send women riders — and your potential customers — when you treat them like trophies instead of handing them one.

And the mixed message you send more than counteracts any good will you might earn by sponsoring women’s races.

Keep sponsoring competitions for both sexes. But drop the podium girls, already.

After all, it’s hard enough for women riders to get the respect they deserve — let alone compete on equal terms with male riders — when you treat them with as much respect as Bob Filner might.

Don’t get me wrong.

I enjoy looking at an attractive woman as much as any man.

But what really makes a woman attractive, to me at least, is knowing she could drop me on a steep uphill ride anytime she damn well feels like it.

Now that’s hot.

Almost as hot as watching a woman receive a hard-earned prize for outracing the world’s best riders, instead of just being one.

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