Tag Archive for this is who we share the roads with

Your help needed for precedent-setting legal case, Epstein enters CD5 council race, and reward for hit-and-run drivers

This has been a rough year for all of us.

And riding a bike hasn’t always been enough to get through it, emotionally or otherwise. 

So take some time to find something you can truly be thankful for, and give your heart and mind a break for a few days. 

And stay safe out there. I want to see you back here bright and early when we return to our regular programming on Monday.

Meanwhile, Friday will mark the launch of this year’s 6th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive.

The corgi puppy is already hard at work preparing for her debut as our new spokesdog. 

But feel free if you want to get a jump on donating and beat the holiday rush. 

Update: Thanks to Arthur B for kicking the fund drive off!

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Today I learned what depublishing means — and what we can do about it.

Recently, we mentioned a legal ruling from a California appeals court that held Sonoma County responsible for injuries a woman suffered when her bike hit a pothole at 25 mph, setting a precedent that would make it easier for other injured riders to hold local governments accountable for bad roads, and their failure to maintain them.

But now lawyers for the county are asking the California Supreme Court to depublish the ruling, which means it couldn’t be used as a precedent for other cases, claiming she was engaged in an “extreme sport.”

This is how the Sonoma County Bicycle Coalition described the case.

The argument put forth by appeals attorney Nadia Sarkis, representing the County, focused on the length, speed, and purpose of Williams’ ride, claiming that as she was engaged in an “extreme sport” and was not an “ordinary user” of the road, she assumed the “inherent risk of the sport.”  In other words, she should have known she could get hurt riding a bike and that County liability for poor road condition therefore does not apply to her.

The Justices’ line of questioning really hammered on this idea that the County’s liability varies based on the speed and purpose of a cyclist’s ride on a given day. One Justice gave Sarkis some hypotheticals and asked in which cases the County has duty. They included a woman riding at the same speed and distance but to work; a teenager riding the same speed but on her way to soccer practice; a 65-year-old woman riding the same speed on an electric bike she bought after having a knee replacement. They all seemed somewhat incredulous only Williams’ incident, but not the rest of these situations, should release the County from liability for the cyclist’s injuries and questioned the whole idea of defining “ordinary” versus “extreme” bicycling.

(Sarkis had quoted a study on “average” speed and distance for recreational versus transportational cyclists and implied that anything above “average” was “extreme.”  The speed and distance of Dr. Williams’ ride were certainly those of a fit and serious rider, but nowhere near what any of us would consider “extreme.”)

Which is ridiculous, of course. And has nothing to do with the failure to ensure a safe riding surface.

Which is where you come in.

Alan Charles Dell’Ario, the plaintiff’s attorney, is asking for letters from bicyclists to forward the Supreme Court within to oppose depublishing the ruling, and keep it as a precedent that could prove invaluable to other injured riders.

You can email your letter to him at Charles@dellario.org.

San Diego bike lawyer Richard L. Duquette, a longtime friend of this site, has shared his own letter to serve as a guide.

Just hurry, because it’s due at the Supreme Court by the end of next week.

Update: Mr. Dell’Ario sends word that your letter must follow the format below to be forwarded to the court.

Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up.

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This year’s city council election ended less than a month ago. But the campaign to replace termed out Paul Koretz in CD5 is just getting started, as Scott Epstein tossed his cycling cap into the ring.

Epstein is a life-long bike rider and advocate for safer streets, and a long-time leader with both the Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee and the Mid City West Community Council.

I’ve known him for over a decade, and it’s hard to imagine a better replacement for the pseudo-environmentalist Koretz, who has opposed virtually every bike project in his district.

Epstein has my unqualified support. And you can find a long list of other endorsements by clicking on the thread above.

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This is who we share the road with.

The LAPD is looking for a motorcyclist and two drivers who ran down a South LA man in a deadly triple hit-and-run.

Fifty-year old Jose Fuentes was crossing Central Ave near 78th Street when the motorcycle rider slammed into him, followed by both drivers running over him, one after the other, as he lay in the roadway.

And not one had the basic human decency to stick around afterwards, let alone call for help or render aid.

Meanwhile, 76-year old Kuen Ham died several hours after she was run down by yet another hit-and-run driver as she was crossing Miramar Street at Union Ave in the Westlake District, dragging her several feet as they fled the scene.

As always, there is standing $50,000 reward offered by the City of Los Angeles for information leading to an arrest and conviction in any fatal hit-and-run, which applies in both these cases.

Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the Fuentes heads-up.

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Four people find the balance between mountain biking and skiing.

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

A road-raging Pittsburgh man faces a raft of charges including attempted murder for allegedly shooting a man riding a bicycle in a dispute that following a collision.

Someone has been sabotaging a rail-to-trail bike path in the UK by strewing large branches on the pavement, as well as throwing sticks at passing riders.

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

Lincoln, Nebraska police are on the lookout for a pair of bike-riding teens who confronted a family jogging on a bike trail, and flashed a gun when they were asked to move out of the way.

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Local

Metro is offering Black Friday deals on bikeshare passes this weekend.

 

State

San Luis Obispo released the city’s new active transportation plan for public review.

A Santa Cruz man faces a murder charge after telling police his girlfriend was killed falling off her bike, even though neighbors reported her screams for help.

Tragic news from San Leandro, where a bike rider was killed in a collision with a van driver, who remained at the scene. Police are looking for a second driver who left the scene and may have been involved, as well.

Davis police are looking for whoever is responsible for a series of bike shop burglaries targeting high-end bicycles. And it’s not just bike shops falling victim, either.

 

National

Bicycling recommends the best Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals for bike riders, along with ten cutting-edge gifts for tech-loving bicyclistsUnfortunately, these don’t seem to be available on Yahoo yet.

Gear Junkie recommends the best mountain bikes for under a grand.

The NYPD has finally done the right thing, and cancelled dozens of outstanding ebike tickets after the city belatedly got around to legalizing them; the department’s crackdown fell primarily on immigrant delivery riders who could least afford it.

New York’s Department of Transportation overrules a community board to build a cargo bike corral near a Manhattan Whole Foods.

Outgoing New York Mayor de Blasio says it will be up to the next mayor to finish Vision Zero, even though the city has barely made a dent in it.

 

International

Cyclist looks at the relatively brief history of Cervélo, as the cutting-edge brand reaches the quarter century mark.

The Guardian considers how to stay safe running or biking after dark this winter.

Wired looks at the surge in bike lanes in cities around the world, as they react to the challenges and opportunities of the pandemic. Needless to say, Los Angeles isn’t one of them.

The CBC profiles London, Ontario residents who plan to keep riding through the frigid Canadian winter.

Bike Radar has the best Black Friday bike deals from the UK, as well as a few from the US.

Cycling Weekly examines how London’s Pearson, reportedly the world’s oldest bike shop, launched its online business in the middle of the pandemic.

Brazen London thieves used an angle grinder to steal a locked ebike in front of witnesses in broad daylight.

British residents say a local bike rider might not have been killed if completion of a half-finished bikeway hadn’t been pushed back to 2027.

That’s more like it. An Irish man has until the end of the year to pay a nearly $24,000 fine for seriously injuring two bicyclists while driving at four times the legal alcohol limit, after an appeals court ruled his original 18-month sentence was too lenient.

A Borneo op-ed says it’s time to consider installing bike lanes on the Malaysian island.

Australia’s food delivery riders complain about dangerous conditions after five riders were killed in just two months.

 

Competitive Cycling

Dutch cyclist Fabio Jakobsen is back on his bike, three months after a horrific crash during the final sprint in stage one of the Tour de Pologne.

Pez Cycling looks forward to five things they want to see in road cycling next year.

 

Finally…

Not all bike riders are saints, but at least one bike riding priest is one his way. And when the shooting of America’s only remaining Tour de France champ didn’t even make the local paper (Scroll down. No, seriously, keep scrolling.).

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

LACBC virtual holiday celebration, Calbike agenda reveal, and this is who we share the road — and the bike path — with

You’re invited to the LACBC’s virtual holiday celebration and potluck dinner next month.

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Think of it as a legislative baby reveal, when Calbike officially unveils their 2021 agenda next month.

Speaking of Calbike, you have until midnight tonight to enter to win one of 21 bike-related prizes.

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This is who we share the road with.

The LAPD is looking for a woman who abandoned her vehicle after slamming into another car in a fiery crash while participating in a speed contest, as well as a second driver who helped her flee.

And an Oregon Tesla driver crashed while doing a whopping 100 mph, sending the car’s batteries flying through the windows of a nearby apartment building.

Bicycles hardly ever spew batteries into buildings when they crash. Especially the regular kind.

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This is who we share the bike path with.

A Colorado driver somehow managed to get stuck on a bike/ped bridge on a Denver offroad bike path.

Far offroad.

Which leads to today’s entry in the Annals of Bad Headlines, which somehow manages to blame the car instead of the driver.

SUV on Denver Bike Path

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Gravel Bike California wants you to get your Whoops in.

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An Oakland bike rider gets his five seconds of fame, popping a wheelie on his scraper bike in the background of a live news report.

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I like him already.

Ashtyn Davis, a rookie safety with the New York Jets, lives a carfree lifestyle, riding his bike to practice every day.

The Jets, on the other hand, totally suck this year.

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An Ottawa city counselor politely reminds drivers to use their turn signals after he’s right hooked by a truck driver turning across a protected bike lane.

A reminder to check their damn mirrors wouldn’t hurt, either.

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GCN’s latest video considers whether a used bike being sold by a pro cycling team is worth buying, even at a big discount.

Which kind of depends on whether you even want a high-end racing bike to begin with.

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Now that’s how to do a baby reveal.

Real Housewives of the Potomac star Ashley Darby surprises her husband with the sex of their coming baby in the middle of his bike ride.

At least they didn’t set the woods on fire.

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Local

A bike-riding man was killed in yet another hit-and-run in South LA on Wednesday; nearly half of the bicycling fatalities in LA County this year have been hit-and-runs.

The Eastsider talks with the owner of Echo Park bike shop Revenge Fantasy Cycles, who recovered from Covid-19 only to run head-first into the bike boom and resulting bicycle shortage.

Streetsblog looks at LA Councilmember Paul Krekorian’s decision to cancel plans to widen Magnolia Blvd in North Hollywood, and proceed with safety improvements including better sidewalks. Although no bike lanes, protected or otherwise, unfortunately.

 

State

No news is good news, right?

 

National

Bicycling gives you the run down on the hybrid bikes the future first couple were riding last weekend. Meanwhile, Carlton Reid says the new Biden administration will boost transit and bicycling, but won’t do anything about car dependency.

No surprise here. The annual Bike Shop Day falls victim to Covid-19.

Bike-friendly US cities are scrambling to combat a rapid rise in bike thefts, which are up 68% since March, according to Bike Index. Which explains why Los Angeles isn’t doing much about it — although the LAPD is now partnering with Bike Index to offer free bike registration.

Riding a bike helped a New Mexico nurse lose 35 pounds and recover from knee surgery — and discover he had the same heart problem that nearly killed my wife. As usual, you can read the story on Yahoo if Bicycling’s site blocks you.

Denver residents are pushing for the city’s Shared Streets, aka Slow Streets, to be made permanent.

An Ohio man explains how to build a lightweight cross-country bike on a budget.

The executive director of Bike Pittsburgh makes the case that bike lanes benefit everyone, not just the people on two wheels.

After a bike commuter was injured in a hit-and-run outside her apartment, a kindhearted South Carolina woman arranged to get him a new bike, then tracked down the total stranger to give it to him.

South Carolina’s Workman Cycles continues to fill orders in workman-like fashion to ensure people get their bikes for the holidays; the 122-year old company claims to be America’s oldest bikemaker.

A professional golfer living in Florida is lucky to come back after suffering serious injuries when she ran her 30 mph ebike into a curb.

 

International

A writer for Bike Radar argues what mountain bike standard should be standard, and that standards should exist to make your life easier.

Merchants in a British Columbia city attempt to shoot themselves in the foot by opposing a plan to replace 90 parking spaces with a two-way cycle track, apparently unaware that bike riders spend more money than drivers do. A city counselor wisely notes that “There’s not a bike path in the world that didn’t start off with some kind of controversy.”

An Ontario, Canada newspaper makes the case for why people in colder climes should keep riding through the winter.

Princess Diana was one of us, spending the night before her wedding to Prince Charles riding through the halls of London’s Clarence House.

Bicycling deaths in Scotland have jumped to their highest level since 2013. Meanwhile, 90% of drivers in the Scottish Borders region say they will simply ignore the new 20 mph speed limit. Those things couldn’t possibly be related, could they?

Proposed British ebike subsidies could cut prices by as much as a third.

A public health professor in the UK calls on the country to close roads over the holidays to give pedestrians and bicyclists room to exercise and allow people to spend as much time outdoors as possible.

The BBC says bike-friendly Slow Streets are changing cities for the better.

The president of the Philippines decrees that the 4th Sunday of every November will henceforth be National Bicycle Day.

 

Finally…

Dunkin’s new donut tandem appears to have failed basic geometry. Keeping up the grand tradition of cheating in bike racing, even virtual kind.

And that feeling when a company claims their reflective bike stickers could potentially save thousands of lives.

Unlike, say, all the other reflective bike stickers out there.

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

Great achievements in bad reporting, New Yorkers brawl over parking, and whether we’re better off with Garcetti in DC

Let’s start off today with the latest edition of Great Achievements in Bad Reporting.

Writing about a bike rider killed in collision with a truck, a Boston TV station failed to mention the driver at all.

Or if the truck even had one.

Then they added this sparkling gem.

Seriously?

Sources report the truck is bereft, and receiving counseling. No word on whether the vehicle will face charges.

Photo by Markus Winkler from Pexels.

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This is who we share the road with.

New Yorkers engage in an all-out brawl that starts with a baseball bat, and ends with a car slamming through a storefront.

All over a damn parking space.

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

Police in New Jersey are looking for a bike-riding man who mugged a woman as she sat at a sidewalk cafe.

A New York thief who apparently doesn’t know how to wear a face mask walked out of a Queens bike shop with an $11,400 Trek Domane SLRQ, after posing as a customer taking it for a test ride. Seriously, Covid-19 aside, if you’re planning to commit a crime, keep your damn mask on. And even if you’re not. 

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Local

A Jewish publication questions whether LA Mayor Eric Garcetti is worthy of a spot in President-elect Joe Biden’s cabinet. My take is that the city would be better off without him, so we could get a replacement who isn’t so easily distracted by national ambitions.

The Los Angeles Fire Department will now be even more nimble in crowd situations, after accepting a gift of four ebikes from Ontario CA bikemaker Aventon.

Culver City got a $47,000 state grant for bicycle and pedestrian safety education programs; Pasadena topped that with a $150,000 grant.

Glendale is attempting to reduce traffic fatalities by improving 16 intersections responsible for 40% of pedestrian deaths.

 

State

San Diego is moving forward with plans for protected bike lanes in the North Park neighborhood, which could be a problem for restaurants that have expanded into the street for al fresco dining.

Ventura sheriff’s deputies busted a pair of suspected thieves with a hot bike stolen in Malibu, as well as meth and burglary tools.

Bad news from Lompoc, where a bike rider was critically injured in a collision. Although once again, there doesn’t appear to actually be a driver involved, judging from the story.

More bad news, as a San Francisco man suffered life-threatening injuries when he reportedly fell off his bike, striking his head.

‘Tis the season. A pair of Red Bluff women are planning to distribute 200 bicycles to kids in Shasta, Tehama, and Siskiyou Counties for the holidays.

 

National

Writing for Outside, Joe Lindsey says the pandemic had presented us with a rare opportunity to reimagine how we get around, resulting in more bikeable, walkable and enjoyable cities.

Portland is teaming with Oregon State University to conduct a study of conflicts between bus and bike lanes at intersections.

Apparently, bikes are getting more like cars every day. Case in point, Seattle is building a $2.5 million bicycle interchange connecting two major bike trails that literally cross, without actually meeting.

Seattle-based Rad Power Bikes continues to push down ebike prices with their new RadMission 1, starting at around a grand.

An Illinois cycling instructor argues that an accident is never just an accident. Which is why I never use the word, unless someone drops a glass of milk or the puppy pees on the carpet.

A South Carolina columnist explains what the hell sharrows are. But fails to mention that they are pretty much useless, except to help angry drivers improve their aim.

 

International

Pink Bike talks with bike industry professionals about what comes next after the coronavirus bike boom. Good to see them hopeful for the future, which is a nice change from recent years.

A London man described as a professional bike thief and one-man crime wave will spend the next two years behind bars after confessing to his crimes.

That didn’t take long. It only took a couple hours for UK residents to snap up all 50,000 vouchers in the country’s second round of bike repair funds.

No surprise here. A new report from an organization that advices the British government on transportation safety makes clear who is responsible for most deaths on the country’s roads, and it ain’t the people on bicycles. Although the family of a 70-year old English woman might disagree.

A Scottish man discovers what happens when his solo bike tour across Europe turns into a tandem ride after meeting a stray kitty in Bosnia.

 

Competitive Cycling

Legendary cycling coach Edward Borysewicz died in Poland from the effects of Covid-19; the 81-year old man better known as Eddie B coached the US Cycling Team to its greatest successes in the late ’70s and ’80s, as well as coaching American cycling greats Greg LeMond, Andy Hampsten and Rebecca Twigg, as well as He Who Must Not Be Named.

An unlicensed British truck driver has pled guilty to charges for killing women’s pro cyclist Josephine Gilbert; he’ll learn his sentence next month.

 

Finally…

Your next bike may not have a chain — or much of a frame, for that matter. That feeling when you fall off a stolen motor scooter after seeing a cop, and your mom comes out to scold the police for, you know, making you fall.

And Oregon Rep. Earl Blumenauer for the win.

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

LA traffic collisions — and bike deaths — drop dramatically, our debt to Alex Trebek, and Culver City bus/bike lanes

No surprise here.

Traffic collisions dropped nearly 42% in Los Angeles during the pandemic lockdown earlier this year, as many drivers stayed home and off the roads.

What’s more surprising is that’s also reflected in the dramatic drop in bicycling deaths in LA County this year, at less than half of last year’s total — 14 so far this year, compared to 34 for all of last year.

Now if we could just keep it that way, as traffic creeps back up to pre-pandemic levels.

Today’s photo comes courtesy of David Drexler, combining two of my favorite things — bikes and coffee.

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Your periodic reminder that some people can live forever, and still be gone too soon.

And this.

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Here’s your chance to weigh in on proposed bus/bike lanes in Culver City, which is rapidly lapping Los Angeles in the race for safe streets.

Then again, it’s not hard to lap someone who never left the starting gate.

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This is who we share the roads with.

There’s a special place in hell for anyone who could just drive off and leave an 87-year old man to die in the street.

And hopefully, a special place behind bars, for a very long time.

Meanwhile, if they really want to put a dent in street racing, make the impound permanent.

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John McBrearty forwards this short video about his bike club’s annual bike build program for kids at the YMCA.

While the video is a couple years old, he assures me it’s taking place once again this year if you want to get involved.

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We can thank Bart Anderson for forwarding this YouTube version of last month’s BBC report on Europe’s bike boom, which wasn’t previously viewable in the US.

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The Bike League is looking for speakers for their upcoming virtual Bike Summit.

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

Monterey bike riders can breathe a little easier tonight, after the local DA announced a man who threw acid on a bike rider 20 years ago will stay in a mental hospital for the foreseeable future.

A Nevada man is being held on $120,000 bail for allegedly shooting a 14-year girl with a BB gun as she was riding her bike; he faces charges of conspiring to commit child abuse and assault with a deadly weapon.

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Local

Looks like Metro is finally getting it, after moving to open up highway funds so local communities can use the money for bike, pedestrian and transit projects, instead.

The Los Angeles Business Journal examines how LA bike shops are struggling to keep up with increased demand due to the bike boom.

A man faces charges for pepper spraying and robbing someone on the beachfront bike path in Santa Monica at 1:37 in the morning; a second suspect was released to…wait for it…his mommy.

Long Beach receives a $275,000 state grant for bicycle and pedestrian safety education programs.

Streets for All is hosting a virtual happy hour with the founders of CicLAvia tomorrow.

 

State

Fontana police are looking for the driver who fled the scene after rear-ending a bike rider last week.

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is keeping up the fight for a safer Market Street after the city tries cutting corners by cancelling plans for a raised bike lane.

 

National

Bicycling considers the best bike trailers to ride with your kids. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if the Bicycling site blocks you out.

Bicycling’s Selene Yeager offers advice on how to overcome common bike riding fears, like descending wet roads and riding in traffic. Once again, you can read it on Yahoo

A Seattle-area man committed suicide just hours before a jury convicted him of raping and murdering a young woman nearly 50 years ago as she was riding her bike. Speaking of a special place in hell, he’s probably already roasting. 

Remarkably, a Las Vegas driver remained at the scene following a high speed crash that took the life of a man riding his bike, despite some outstanding arrest warrants. Then again, if he’d been arrested sooner, the victim might still be with us.

 

International

The BBC looks at the technological advances in the never-ending war against bike thieves.

Good news for ebike riders, as a new Dutch study shows ebikes are no more dangerous than other bikes. Although another study blames ebikes for the rise in traffic deaths among elderly riders.

Madrid’s El Pais maps out how cities around the world are responding to the coronavirus crisis by expanding their bike networks. Note that LA was not included, despite its grand total of zero popup bike lanes.

Ebikes are encouraging Kiwis to get off the couch and start exercising again.

 

Finally…

It’s one thing to ride a bike cross-country; another to make the trip on a Penny Farthing. If you leave the parking meters next to the curb after installing a protected bike lane, where the hell do they think people will park?

And we’re finally training someone to fill in and write these posts when I can’t.

 

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

Photo released in Long Beach hit-and-run, Biden endorses bike/ped infrastructure, and no end to bike shortage soon

The good news is, my new carpal tunnel wrist braces are helping with the pain. 

The bad news is, they’re really slowing down my workflow by restricting my usually flying fingers. 

But who needs sleep, anyway?

Photo by Valeriia Miller from Pexels.

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Long Beach police released a security cam photo of the semi-truck and trailer involved in the hit-and-run crash that killed 56-year old Lisa Termin last month.

However, they’re already absolving the driver of responsibility, noting he or she may be unaware they hit anyone.

That may be theoretically possible, if unlikely, depending on how and where she was struck by the truck.

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Not only is our presumptive president elect one of us, Joe Biden’s plans for his first term include better bike and pedestrian infrastructure.

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Don’t plan on getting that new bike you’re pining for anytime soon.

Bicycling reports the shortage caused by the bike boom could last into 2022.

Both retailers and manufacturers say they haven’t seen such demand for bikes in several decades. Revard said that despite manufacturers significantly ramping up production, his industry contacts estimate the pandemic-fueled bike and part shortage will continue into 2021 and—based on what brands are quietly telling their retailers—may even last until 2022.

The magazine adds the lower-end bikes are in higher demand, so you may have better luck if you’re willing to spend more. Or consider buying a used bike.

Just be sure to check with Bike Index and 529 Garage to make sure you aren’t buying someone else’s stolen wheels.

As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if the Bicycling site blocks you out.

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This is whole share the roads with.

A 67-year old man was killed when he was severely beaten by a road raging driver following a Compton crash, then run over several times with his own car.

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It takes a real bike rider to see a story like this and only notice the bike.

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Fair warning. You never know who’s on that bike.

https://twitter.com/Sir_Labz/status/1325341053382242304

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

Who’s shocked that the ultra conservative British politician behind Brexit would turn out to be a bike hater, too? Road.cc explains how and why Nigel Farage is full of merde.

No bias here. The same London paper that hosted Farage’s diatribe insists it’s time to end the bike lane madness, accusing bike infrastructure of being the cause of traffic congestion, while ignoring the role played by all those people in cars, trucks and SUVs.

No bias here, either. A Glasgow letter writer complains about inexperienced bike riders on a “rarely used” bike lane. And experienced ones, too. But how can it be rarely used if there are enough bicyclists on it to complain about?

Apparently offended that a bicyclist took offense at nearly being run off the road, an English driver gives him a needless brake check just to prove what a horse’s ass he really is.

Then there’s this.

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Local

Votes are still being counted, but nearly half of the candidates endorsed by Streets for All have won their races.

A writer for UCLA’s Daily Bruin says LA Councilmember Paul Koretz must listen to his constituents or risk losing his office. While I appreciate the sentiment, if they read their own paper, they’d know Koretz will be termed out in 2022, and planning a run for city controller.

A new lawsuit accuses pair of on-duty Compton city employees of killing bike rider Jose Portillo in a high speed crash in June of last year.

No surprise here, as South Pasadena nears approval of a climate plan that will depend on reducing car usage.

 

State

Sad news from Santa Clara, where an 84-year old woman was killed in a collision while riding against traffic.

 

National

Outside recommends the best women’s gear for fall mountain biking.

Hip Hop star Swae Lee is one of us, as he celebrates bike life with his two-wheeled crewe.

A Denver man recovered his stolen Trek after seeing it on a TV news report from a homeless camp.

Chicago Streetsblog lists ways to mitigate the risk on group rides as Covid-19 explodes across the US; rates have doubled over just the past three weeks.

A Massachusetts paper catches up with former BMX champ Tony Peloquin, who now airs it out in New England skate parks just for fun.

A bike-riding New York city council candidate learns the hard way that aspiring to public office is no guarantee of protection from crappy drivers.

Here’s another one for your bike bucket list. New York’s 750-mile Empire State Trail is expected to open later this year, connecting the Big Apple to the Canadian border. Even though Canada isn’t letting Americans in during the Covid-19 pandemic.

No surprise when the hit-and-run driver who ran down a pair of bike riders in a Florida retirement community turns out to be an 89-year old woman. She probably shouldn’t have still been driving at that age to begin with.

 

International

Treehugger explains why we should sell Vision Zero like a car commercial.

Pink Bike offers a “cacophony of whimsical bike illustrations” courtesy of artist Cy Whitling.

When Canadian musician Adrian House’s car-based tour of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick in support of his latest album was blocked by Covid-19, he bought a special pannier for his guitar and did it by bike. And no, you can’t find his music on iTunes, I tried.

UK Olympic cycling legend Chris Boardman argues that it’s safer not to wear a bike helmet for casual riding.

Now that’s more like it. A Scottish pizza parlor is honored for refusing to serve drivers who parked in the bike lane, as well as offering a ten percent discount for customers who come by bike.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A heartbroken British father offers an emotional tribute to his 11-year old son, who was killed by a driver as he was riding his bike with his best friend, who was also killed.

UK auto parts and bike dealer Halfords stepped in to give a 12-year old heart transplant recipient a new bike after thieves stole the rear wheel of his bike, damaging the brakes and chain in the process.

The Netherlands is exploring technology to automatically cut power to ebikes entering residential and built-up areas in an effort to reduce deaths.

A pair of mountain bikers take a mostly singletrack tour on the Stoneman Taurista trail through the Austrian Alps. The photos alone are worth the click.

Munich, Germany pulls the plug on the city’s coronavirus-inspired pop-up bike lanes, apparently assuming Germans aren’t into winter biking.

The bikeshare system in Panchkula is proving far more successful than other Indian cities, despite being less than half the size.

 

Competitive Cycling

Just weeks after snatching defeat from the jaws of victory in the Tour de France, former Slovenian ski jumper Primož Roglič bounced back to secure the top of the podium in the Vuelta.

Thirty-eight-year old Australian Rory Sutherland calls it a career after 18 years in the pro peloton.

Chris Froome pulled the plug on his career with Team Ineos, nee Team Sky, after 11 years and four Tour de France titles; he’ll ride for Israel Start-Up Nation as he seeks a record-tying fifth win next year. Even though He Who Must Not Be Named won seven, but everyone is pretending he didn’t. So there’s that.

Hats off to Florida’s Chris Nikic, who became the first person with Down Syndrome to compete in an Ironman triathlon.

 

Finally…

Evidently, hot wax is good for bike chains, as well as bikini lines. Fall off your bike looking for mushrooms, and find a stash of rare coins, instead.

And who needs a horse to rob a train when you’ve got a bicycle?

………

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

Chief Lunes cyclist dies in Vegas car crash, removing cops from traffic enforcement, and no 15-minute city in LA

My apologies for Friday’s unexcused absence. 

Between my diabetes, neuropathy and whatever the hell else was going on, Thursday was one of the worst nights I’ve had in recent memory.

Just one more reminder that I’m not in charge of my own body any more.

Which is a very hard thing for a formerly dedicated bicyclist to face.

And another reminder to see your doctor, improve your diet, and do whatever it takes to keep your blood sugar under control. 

Because you really don’t want this shit. Especially now

Photo by Sabine van Erp from Pixabay.

………

Let’s start with some heartbreaking news.

Many of us got to know Spencer Sims, either directly or through sites like this, following the hit-and-run death of bike rider Frederick “Woon” Frazier in South LA two years ago.

Like Woon, Sims was a member of the Chief Lunes cycling group, and was one of the leaders in the fight for justice for Frazier, as well as his mother and infant child, who was born after his death.

For well over a year afterwards, I got emails from Sims about the status of the case and the next moves in their battle for justice.

Sadly, I won’t be getting any more.

It took awhile to confirm, but Spencer Sims was killed, along with another man, in a single-car collision outside Las Vegas last week, when 19-year old driver lost control and the car they were riding in left the road.

Neither man was wearing a seat belt.

There were apparently no witnesses to the crash; a passerby reported finding the wreckage sometime later. Just a couple more sacrifices to the motor vehicle gods.

Now Woon’s mother will be even more alone and isolated without Sims looking in on her.

And he leaves this world without ever seeing justice for his friend and fellow rider. After a retracted confession and countless delays, Mariah Candice Banks, the woman accused of killing Woon in her high-end SUV, has yet to set foot in a courtroom for anything other than her arraignment.

Her long-delayed prelim is now scheduled for November 4th.

Sims won’t be there; let’s hope he and Woon are riding together somewhere. But maybe some of us can take his place.

………

LAist makes the case for why we may not really need police to enforce traffic laws and curb traffic violence, suggesting there are effective alternatives like automated enforcement and self-enforcing street design.

This summer, a group of L.A. City Council members filed a motion calling on the city’s Department of Transportation and legislative officials to work with community members and report back on alternative methods of traffic enforcement, collision investigations and other traffic safety duties currently handled by the Los Angeles Police Department.

Some potential changes that will be explored: replacing LAPD officers with a “transit ambassador program” staffed by unarmed LADOT personnel and/or automated technology to monitor and cite drivers for speeding, illegal turns and other moving violations.

“Such a move would virtually eliminate the LAPD’s role in traffic stops, one of the leading forms of interaction between police and the public,” states the motion, which was filed by L.A. City Councilmembers Marqueece Harris-Dawson, Mike Bonin, Curren Price and Herb Wesson.Breonna

It’s a challenging and thought-provoking read, well worth a few minutes of your time.

Because the current system really isn’t working for anyone.

………

The C40 Cities — a group of 96 cities dedicated to taking action to fight climate change — says the concept of a 15-minute city is rapidly spreading around the world.

That’s the idea that you should be able to walk, bike or take transit to anything you need within 15 minutes of your home or office.

Except here in Los Angeles, of course.

Where the car continues to be king, nothing even slightly resembling a bike network exists anywhere outside of Downtown, and Metro just locked in major service cuts for at least the next year.

Never mind that LA Mayor Eric Garcetti is the current chair of the Metro board. Not to mention chair of C-40 Cities.

Or are we not supposed to notice that?

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

………

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

A truck driver floored it after encountering a Breonna Taylor protest in Hollywood, plowing through the crowd and seriously injuring a woman who was standing directly in front of his pickup.

That was followed by the driver of a Prius who forced his way through the crowd before being stopped and attacked with skateboards and bicycles.

A person was injured when a pickup driver plowed through a racial justice protest in Eureka, appearing to strike several people; the regional Coalition for Responsible Transportation condemned the attack.

A Milwaukee woman was injured when a driver accidentally hit her bike as she was riding on the wrong side of the road during a protest.

A Buffalo, New York woman faces charges for intentionally driving through a Bronna Taylor protest, seriously injuring a woman working as a bike marshal,

However, an Orange County woman flipped the script, seriously injuring two people by driving through a conservative, pro-Trump rally; 40-year old Long Beach resident Tatiana Turner was arrested.

………

In a truly sickening action, a Seattle bike cop deliberately rolled his police bicycle over the head of a protestor lying prone in the street.

He was immediately placed on leave after the video surfaced, pending an investigation., while the victim decried the apparent disregard for human life.

Let’s hope this is the last time that cop wears blue.

A little further south in Portland, police threw an Uber delivery rider off his bike and hogtied him, even as he insisted he was just doing his job and had nothing to do with the protests.

………

VeloNews follows along as five riders and a camera crew hope to inspire others with a 1,114-mile journey bikepacking tour exploring the Underground Railroad.

………

Gravel Bike California goes riding in Puerco Canyon, as well as Latino Canyon and the iconic Rock Store.

For those Español challenged like me, that translates to Pig Canyon.

Just so you know.

………

Slow Streets comes to Altadena, where most streets are, anyway.

………

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

A New York woman recounts her recent hit-and-run, describing a deliberate attack by a driver who knew he could get away with it.

Police are looking for a man who jumped off some rocks to attack two bicyclists with a bat as they rode on a paved trail through a Philadelphia park.

A Scottish cyclist reports an elderly “gentleman” tried to run him and another rider off the road, slowing down and swerving into them just after they completed a 31-hour, 560-mile ride. Although that pretty much defies any definition of gentleman I’m familiar with.

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

Long Beach police are looking for a bike-riding gunman who killed another man in an early morning bike-by shooting.

A defense lawyer in Canada’s Northwest Territories argues that his client was too drunk to form the intent necessary for murder, after killing another man following a day of bicycling in a drunken stupor.

………

Local

Metro Bike is shutting down operations on LA’s Westside for a couple months starting today, as the system expands and unifies the Westside and Central bikeshare networks, as well as bringing in the popular ebike service.

Despite the budget cuts, Metro’s new long-range budget included plans to close the long-standing eight-mile gap in the LA River bike path, and provide better bike access to DTLA. Because evidently, those must be the only places anyone would ever want to go on a bicycle.

 

State

SoCal ebike maker Electric Bike Company has opened their first showroom in Huntington Beach.

A San Diego nonprofit is working with local small businesses to train young adults to work in the bicycle industry.

A Ventura man celebrated his miraculous recovery from a near-fatal mountain bike crash by paddle boarding 14 miles back to Channel Islands Harbor Marina from Anacapa Island.

Bay Area bike riders dropped Bike to Work Day and celebrated Bike to Wherever Day last week, instead.

San Francisco finally gets around to opening a carfree route through Golden Gate Park.

Seriously? A woman who was injured riding a Jump scooter in San Francisco has filed a class action suit against several e-scooter companies, including Uber and Segway, because…wait for it…no one warned consumers that scooters don’t have turn signals. No one tell her about bicycles.

 

National

How to access bicycling directions in the latest version of Apple Maps.

The former head of the League of American Bicyclists says it’s time to stop relying on commuter data as the primary measure to make traffic planning decisions, because there’s a lot more to transportation.

America’s only remaining Tour de France winner is back in the bike business with a small line of carbon ebikes that are a far cry from the road bikes he used to be known for.

Minneapolis’ Black-led Major Taylor bike club has been working for two decades to get more people of color on bicycles.

How to navigate your next bike vacation in the Big Apple.

 

International

An op-ed from The Guardian calls for media reporting guidelines for traffic safety, arguing that how stories are reported and the language used contribute to the dangers on our roads and how the law is applied.

He gets it. Another writer for The Guardian says denying a child the joys of riding a bicycle is an abdication of parental responsibility, adding “No video game, Covid-19 lockdown or computer simulation can replace the childhood liberation of being alone on a bicycle.”

E-cargo bikes are already replacing trucks in cities around the world.

Chances are, a 13-year old dog may have visited more countries by bike than you have, traveling through 26 countries on a two-year bike tour of Europe and South America.

Cycling Weekly directs your attention to the best eco-conscious bikewear brands.

Needless to say, Vancouver bike riders aren’t happy about the closure of a popup bike lane through a park, because drivers somehow insisted they needed two lanes each way for their cars. Yes, choosing cars over people in a park.

A bighearted Cambridge University academic replaced a speech therapist’s stolen bike, because they’d helped him so much when he was diagnosed with a severe speech impediment as a child.

An 11-year old English girl rode a tandem 70 miles with her dad to visit all 12 cricket clubs in the North Staffordshire area, raising more than four times her original goal of £500 for cardiac risk assessments for young people; she’s raised the equivalent of over $2,800.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 93-year old British man raced competitively until he was 80, and still rides 150 miles a week.

A bike rider in the UK recorded 14 drivers traveling through a popup bike lane in just 35 minutes. Kind of makes you wonder how many went through it the other 23 hours and 25 minutes.

Forget CicLAvia. The entire city of Paris left their cars at home for one day for the city’s annual carfree day.

Parisian pedestrians find themselves competing for space with bike riders on the city’s busy streets.

France is introducing a new victim-blaming bike safety campaign as bicycling injuries go up with more people taking to the streets on two wheels.

Once again, a bike rider is a hero. An Indian family is alive today because an anonymous bike rider was in the right place at the right time, leaping into action to pull them to safety after their car went off the road and into a natural drain before simply riding away afterwards; sadly, though, he wasn’t able to save the family’s three-year old girl.

Bicycling violations are up as in Japan as bicycling booms during the pandemic.

Malaysian bike riders take issue with a call from the country’s road safety institute to license bicyclists and require numbered plates, saying it would not improve traffic safety.

 

Competitive Cycling

Julian Alaphilippe won the world road championships with a late attack, becoming the first Frenchman to wear the rainbow jersey in over two decades.

Anna van der Breggen continued the Dutch dominance of the women’s road worlds, as the country placed three of the four top finishers; cyclists from the Netherlands have won the event four years in a row. Van de Breggen claimed the time trial title, too.

Last week we mentioned defending champ Chloe Dygert was injured after wiping out during the women’s time trial world championships. Turns out that injury was more gruesome than any of us probably imagined.

 

Finally…

If he really was Lucifer, why would he need to steal a bike? Two hundred miles in 32 hours is pretty good — especially when you’re doing it on your daughter’s little pink girl’s bike.

And evidently, moose don’t like cars any more than people on bikes do.

………

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

G’mar Chatima Tovah!

LASD exonerates itself in Kizzee shooting amid calls for sheriff to resign, and e-scooters just ain’t the problem

No surprise here.

Nearly three weeks after LA County Sheriff’s Deputies shot and killed Compton bike rider Dijon Kizzee, the department held it’s first press conference.

Not surprisingly, it exonerated itself completely, even while multiple investigations are still ongoing.

And even as community activist Najee Ali accused the Sheriff’s Department of trying to “blame a Black man unjustly shot … for his own murder by his deputies” while speaking on behalf of family members.

According to a department spokesperson, deputies originally attempted to stop Kizzee for riding salmon, a crime that does not normally carry the death penalty.

Kizzee reportedly was carrying a gun that had been stolen in Las Vegas, which he was not legally allowed to have due to a prior felony conviction and a restraining order.

Deputies fired at least 15 shots after spotting the weapon when he dropped it, along with some clothes he’d been carrying.

However, after giving the deputies over two weeks to get their stories straight talk to investigators, the gun somehow went from the ground, as the sheriff’s department originally stated, into Kizzee’s hand as claimed in the new report.

Never mind that security video appears to show the deputies shooting at Kizzee as he ran away.

Unfortunately, we may never know for sure what happened, since LA County Sheriff’s Deputies aren’t currently required to wear body cams.

But the shooting does raise questions, especially in a department where gang-like groups wear matching tattoos and call themselves names like the Executioners.

It doesn’t matter who Kizzee was, or whether he had a record. It also doesn’t matter that he ran from the deputies, or briefly tussled with one when they tried to tackle him.

For the crime of riding on the wrong side of the street.

What matters is whether the deputies had a legitimate reason to fear for their own lives, or that of the public, before opening fire.

Let alone whether the department can, or will, conduct an honest investigation of its own deputies. Especially under the current administration.

Because this one doesn’t begin to pass the smell test.

………

On a closely related subject, the LA Times says LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva, who has repeatedly ignored subpoenas and attempted to dodge civilian oversight, is the best advisement for the need for “muscular” oversight.

In addition, several city and county officials are calling on Villanueva to resign, including LA Councilmember David Ryu and county supervisors Mark Ridley-Thomas and Sheila Kuehl.

Yeah, that’ll happen.

………

CBS News says micromobility is proving increasingly deadly, citing 41 deaths linked to e-scooters, ebikes and hoverboards over a three-year period.

Which compares to roughly 112,500 people killed in motor vehicle collisions over the same period.

Admittedly, I’ve never been very good at math, but I’m pretty sure 41 is less that 112,500.

A lot less.

So which one is really the problem on our streets?

………

Something is seriously wrong when you’re not even safe from cars and their drivers in your own home.

………

Here’s one for weight weenies, as GCN investigates whether bike weight really matters in the Tour de France.

………

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

Police in San Diego busted a bike-riding arsonist who used “molotov cocktail-like devices” to repeatedly set shrubs on fire outside a police station.

Chicago authorities are on the lookout for a masked bike-riding groper who has assaulted several women.

………

Local

The LA Times catches up with the founder of the magical Venice Electric Light Parade weekly bike ride.

A former LA city planner accuses Los Angeles officials of being closet climate change deniers in environmentalist clothing.

The Covid-19 pandemic has brought a temporary halt to the Long Beach State Cycling Club, which is unable to keep riding under current university restrictions

 

State

Seriously? San Diego washed away a series of children’s chalk drawings supporting Black Lives Matter on a La Jolla bike path just days after they were finished, citing complaints that they were “hate speech.”

Santa Barbara is looking for a way for bike riders to coexist with pedestrians after the city closed a popular street to make room for shopping and dining while social distancing, which was also the spine of the city’s bike network.

 

National

The Idaho Stop Law is slowly spreading across the US, allowing bike riders to treat stop signs as yields.

A writer for Bicycling says never mind the cliche about never forgetting to ride a bike, because the truth is, you never forget how good it feels to ride one. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you out

Good question. Wired wonders why Uber wasn’t charged in the death of an Arizona bike rider who was killed by one of their driverless cars, instead of the admittedly distracted human behind the wheel.

A new study from Portland’s Alta Planning and Design says don’t cut corners on corner design to prevent unsafe turns by drivers.

A kindhearted Texas cop replaced a nine-year old boy’s bike after it was stolen.

An Arlington Texas police detective was released from the hospital following a crash that killed a fellow bicyclist when a driver plowed into the group they were riding with. But since the driver remained at the scene, it’s evidently okay.

A Houston reverend will bike 500 mies through Michigan to raise funds to fight hunger in Guatemala.

Martha Stewart is one of us, enjoying the coronavirus quarantine while popping her new line of CBD-infused fruit pate and riding her ebike around her 153-acre New York state farm.

He gets it. A New York assembly member says the state should subsidize ebike purchases to wean people off of cars. We need to start hearing that from California officials, too.

 

International

A Scottish bicyclist who was nearly killed in a Texas collision while riding across the US will attempt to set a new record for riding nonstop over 500 miles through the Scottish Highlands, taking aim at the existing record of 31 hours and 23 minutes.

Paris is the latest major city to announce that 31 miles of popup bike lanes that were installed at the beginning of the coronavirus lockdown will be made permanent. That compares favorably to Los Angeles, which will make zero lanes permanent, out of the zero popup bike lanes that were installed. 

Here’s something you won’t see in the US. The king and queen of the Netherlands took a casual bike ride while meeting with local officials, wearing a suit, gown and practical pumps.

A Singapore letter writer says licensing drivers doesn’t seem to make them any safer, so maybe it’s not the answer for bike riders, either.

 

Competitive Cycling

The 600 pound gorilla that is Team Ineos finally performs as expected in the Tour de France, at least for one stage.

The president of Slovenia is pretty pumped that two of his countrymen could be standing on the final podium when the Tour gets to Paris.

The director for leading team Jumbo-Visma got the boot from the Tour after losing his cool when inspectors allegedly damaged leader Primož Roglič’s bike checking for signs of motor doping.

Defending champ Annemiek van Vleuten of the Netherlands is out of next week’s worlds after crashing while leading the Giro Rosa

 

Finally…

Your next bike could be made of wood. Seriously, don’t bite the guy whose bike you just stole.

And don’t put dog poop in Trump supporters mailboxes.

On a bike or otherwise.

………

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

Bike riders under attack around the world, pickup-driving Torrance racists, and PCH bike path closure above Ventura

This is who we share the road with.

A Utah driver faces a murder charge for deliberately killing a bike rider, smashing into him and dragging him down the road, then turning around and doing it again; his rage appeared to stem from living in the same building with the victim.

No surprise here, as a Cleveland man who tried to run over a group of bike-riding Black teenagers while hurling racial slurs has been indicted on charges of felonious assault and ethnic intimidation; he also robbed his own brother at knife point.

Unbelievable. A British driver who used his car as a weapon to attack a bike rider walks without a single day behind bars, because the judge doesn’t want to send anyone to jail during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Then there is this stunning attack stemming from the ongoing protests in Seattle.

………

Closer to home, the danger comes from hate.

 

………

Congress finally got around to approving the Great American Outdoors Act.

The bill creates an ongoing $900 million annual fund for conservation and address the massive backlog of maintenance projects in American National Parks and other public lands.

………

Caltrans has announced a nighttime closure of the PCH bike path above Ventura.

………

That cycling KOM you’ve been gunning for may be a goner, thanks to bored pros waiting for the season to gear back up.

Although some pros may be looking for something a little more challenging.

………

Good point.

………

No. Just…no.

………

Bikes are good for soccer careers, too.

………

Pink Bike looks at easy ways to tuneup your mountain bike.

………

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

See above.

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

A Texas man told a Target employee he could take whatever he wanted as he stuffed a pair of shoes and shorts into his backpack; police stopped him as he rode his bike nearby to tell him “No, you can’t.”

A road-raging British bike rider punched a 78-year old driver in the mouth, knocking out a tooth, after the driver stopped his car when the man made rude gestures and shouted at him as he passed him and his two kids. Violence is never the answer. But that kind of response from a man riding with his kids just might imply that the guy earned it.

………

Local

Essential workers can get a free 30-day Metro Bike pass.

Pasadena is introducing Project Wheelie to bring a bike-matching service and basic bike repairs to low income residents who might not otherwise be able to ride a bike right now; it’s presented by public health nonprofit Day One in conjunction with the Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition, Active SGV and the LACBC.

Speaking of Pasadena, the Rose City received a $150,000 state grant for a bicycle safety outreach program.

Construction has started on a new bike park in Santa Clarita.

 

State

Calbike and Streets for All are urging you to contact your state senator to support AB 3153, which would extend an LA-style bike parking law to the entire state, allowing developers to substitute bike parking for car parking minimums.

Electrek reviews the latest 28 mph offering from Newport Beach’s Electric Bicycle Company.

In another sign the coronavirus hasn’t made our streets any safer, San Francisco authorities say they’ve seen a significant uptick in bicyclist and pedestrian fatalities.

An Oakland councilmember calls for ripping out the protected bike lanes on iconic Telegraph Avenue. Apparently, increased retail sales and a 40% reduction in collisions is a bad thing now.

Volunteer members of the American Ski Patrol have traded slats for wheels, and will be patrolling the 32-mile American River Parkway multi-use trail in the Sacramento area. Maybe we can talk them into patrolling a few trails down this way, too. Because no one else is doing it.

 

National

Market Watch says cannabis, whiskey and mobile bike repair businesses are thriving during the pandemic. Now if someone would just combine the three they might really be onto something.

A Portland State University study says no, bike riders don’t slow down drivers on most urban roads without bike lanes. But try telling that to the next impatient driver who gets on your ass.

Ebike sales will continue to drive the bike boom through the end of this year.

Colorado bike rack and lock maker Rocky Mount barely survived the pandemic, thanks to a loan from the Payroll Protection Program, but the owner realizes it’s not over yet. Just to be clear, the pandemic is barely getting started; it’s going to be a rough ride for all of us before things get better.

After someone stole a three-wheel adaptive bike from an Iowa man suffering from non-verbal autism, an anonymous, kindhearted stranger took it upon themselves to replace it.

Three burglars broke into a Texas bike shop and cleaned it out, stealing 19 bikes worth at least $45,000. Schmucks.

An Arkansas woman describes how she kept mountain biking, even if her first ride ended up in the back of an ambulance.

A Wisconsin nonprofit has managed to donate 100 bicycles to people in need, despite reopening from the coronavirus lockdown just one month ago.

Dozens of Louisville residents took to their bikes to demand justice for Breonna Taylor, who was mistakenly shot by cops busting into her apartment on a no knock warrant.

Calls for bikemakers to stop making police bikes after they were used as shields and weapons by cops during the Black Lives Matter protests is putting a Massachusetts Black-owned police bike startup in an awkward position.

After bikeshare user Sarah Jessica Parker intervened on behalf of a 100-year old New York restaurant, New York’s mayor agreed to move a bikeshare dock so they could set up outside dining.

Philadelphia bicyclists will ride this weekend to honor three young men killed by drivers while riding their bikes, and send a message that “We are not expendable;” meanwhile, an op-ed from the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia asks how many preventable deaths will it to make the city care about bicycle safety.

When life gives you a pandemic-induced Florida school closure, take a cross-country bike ride with your twin brother to raise funds for Big Brothers Big Sisters.

 

International

Google Maps now offers live bikeshare availability for 24 cities around the world, including Los Angeles.

No surprise here, as Streetsblog says the most important traffic safety technology is street design.

Heartbreaking news, as an experienced bike tourist was killed in a collision just as she was starting a two-month bike ride across Canada. Although it would be nice if the story didn’t wait until the next-to-last paragraph to mention that the pickup that hit her had a driver.

Turns out the Mounties don’t always get their man, particularly when the suspect is one of their own, who ran down a bike rider with his car.

Dooring a bike rider will now cost British Columbia drivers $368, after the province quadrupled the previous $81 fine. Which is still way too low, but at least it’s going in the right direction.

An Ontario bike rider was just nine miles from the finish of a 472-mile fundraising bike ride when he was attacked by hornets while crossing a bridge, nearly dying before paramedics could get to him. So naturally, he went back and finished the ride as soon as he was released from the ER.

They may be considered safe enough for US streets, but Great Britain says American SUVs are too dangerous for their roads. Those killing machines shouldn’t be allowed here, either.

British filmmaker and Madonna ex Guy Ritchie apparently isn’t one of us. Although he may be soon, after losing his license for six months after a bicyclist caught him on camera driving distracted.

An Irish cycling organization was upset they weren’t allowed to compete in the ’72 Olympics, so they just crashed the race and did it anyway.

When the US Army challenged soldiers stationed in Europe to ride a bike 1,000 kilometers — 621 miles — they probably weren’t expecting anyone to do it in 19 days, on a mountain bike.

Even in France, demand for bicycles is outstripping supply.

This Dutch bike may be the world’s longest functional bicycle. But just try finding a place to lock it up.

More on Germany’s new safety standards for e-cargo bikes, which should be expanded worldwide — including here.

Six-time Formula 1 world champ Lewis Hamilton is one of us, enjoying a shirtless and well-tatted mountain bike ride just days after winning the Hungarian Grand Prix.

A bike rider in Kyiv, Ukraine says bike ridership has probably seen a ten times increase during the pandemic, even though riding in the city remains a deadly business.

 

Competitive Cycling

Canada’s WorldTour races are the latest to bite the dust due to Covid-19.

Britain’s erstwhile Team Sky, which changed its name to Team Ineos after a sponsorship change, will now be the the erstwhile Team Ineos, as it changes once again to Ineos Grenadiers to promote an upcoming brand of SUV.

Former WorldTour cyclist Peter Stetina’s shift to gravel racing is on the rocks after everything was cancelled due to coronavirus.

Austrian cyclist Georg Preilder got a one-year suspended sentence for his role in a German doping scandal uncovered last year. But cycling is clean now, right?

 

Finally…

No, turning a bicycle into a monochrome planter is not upcycling, in any sense. On the other hand, turning it into a mobile washing machine might be.

And don’t use gasoline to disinfect your cloth face masks.

And don’t smoke if you do.

………

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

Endorsing Nithya Raman in LA’s CD4, bike riding reporter attacked by police, and this is who we share the road with

With everything going on these days, it’s easy to forget we have a city council election coming up this November in LA’s 4th Council District.

Bike the Vote LA is reminding you to get involved in any way you can to support Nithya Raman in the runoff against incumbent David Ryu, who only managed to become a belated supporter of safe streets and other urban issues after winning less than 50% of the vote in the March primary.

Which means, in any normal year, he’d be facing the worst reelection prospects of any sitting councilmember in years.

But this is anything but a normal year.

If the above hasn’t made it clear, though, Raman has my wholehearted support.

Not just because Ryu has repeatedly failed to support safer streets until his reelection was at risk, but because she’s always supported bicycling and safe streets.

And not just when it became expedient in an election year.

Photo by Element5 Digital from Pexels.

………

Evidently, Portland isn’t the only place where bike riders and the press are under attack.

………

This is who we share the road with.

And a British celeb says she hates bicyclists and threatens to run them over — including her own husband.

………

GCN explains why you might want to ride with a hole in your saddle.

………

Looks like Martha Stewart is one of us.

Although I’d be more convinced id she’s actually throw a leg over that downtube.

………

Looks like bike polo goes back a lot longer than some of us may have realized.

Okay, maybe just me.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the forwarding the tweet.

………

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

A bike-riding British woman was attacked with a stick in a “vicious and unprovoked attack” by the passenger in a passing white van.

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

There’s a special place in hell for the cruiser bike-riding man who sexually assaulted a woman on a Temecula bike path last week.

And he’ll be joined by the racist Calgary, Alberta bike rider who shouted ethnic slurs and spat on a couple.

………

Local

Forbes is favorably impressed with the body positive women’s kits from LA’s Machines for Freedom.

The West Hollywood City Council will be voting today on a much needed proposal to create a neighborhood greenway on the Willoughby, Vista and Gardner corridors; Streets For All is calling for everyone to get their comments in before 4 pm today.

Late night talk show host James Corden is one of us, as he hits the streets of Venice for a bike ride with his son.

Long Beach called on city workers to “pursue and implement” a citywide Safe Streets plan, including lane reductions, separated bike lanes, and measures to encourage more walking.

 

State

Calbike is urging you to call your state senator to support AB 3153, which would allow developers to build bike parking instead of more spaces for cars; Los Angeles has had a similar law on the books since 2013.

A Fresno bike rider was critically injured by an alleged intoxicated driver; police found a loaded syringe in the car and suspect he may have passed out behind the wheel.

You’ll have to wait another year to take part in America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride around Lake Tahoe.

 

National

Bicycling’s Selene Yeager says it took a global pandemic to remind us that local bike shops are community lifelines. And just like that, I’ve already hit the new monthly limit of just four stories a month that was announced this past Thursday

Speaking of Bicycling, they recommend their favorite fat tired ebikes, with prices starting at just $1,199.

USA Today examines how the coronavirus pandemic has spurred a bike boom across the US.

Writing for Men’s Health, Peter Flax says everybody is riding gravel these days, even with just one leg.

An Anchorage AK reporter takes a ride on the 32-mile Moose Loop created by stitching together several existing bike paths; it gets its name because it sort of looks like a moose head on the map if you squint just right.

You’ve got to be kidding. A Wisconsin driver won’t face charges for running down a bike rider from behind; police blame the victim for not having lights on his bike, but the driver didn’t turn his on, either.

Ebike engine maker Bosch has teamed with Tern Bicycles, Stile Products, Inc. and Chicago’s B-Cycle bikeshare to provide dozens of ebikes and e-cargo bikes to Covid-19 aid groups in the Windy City.

Life is cheap in Michigan, where a killer driver got a whole six months for taking the life of a man riding his bike — and he’ll only have to serve that on weekends. After all, they wouldn’t want to inconvenience him or anything.

The Boston Globe talks with basketball great Bill Walton about the sequel to the Bike for Humanity virtual fundraising bike ride this Saturday; the first ride raised over $100,000.

Sarah Jessica Parker is one of us, too, as the bikeshare user called on New York’s Citi Bike to move a docking station so a 101-year old restaurant could use the space for outdoor seating.

Steph and Ayesha Curry are two of us, going for a casual Orlando bike ride while they wait for the NBA season to resume.

Once again, authorities manage to keep a dangerous driver on the streets, as a drunken hit-and-run Florida driver who ran down a bike rider while driving at nearly twice the legal limit won’t spend a single day behind bars, and will lose her license for just one year.

 

International

Cycling Weekly offers a beginner’s guide to buying an ebike.

Road.cc says your next bike should be a mountain bike; meanwhile, hardcore mountain bikers are heading to he hills of Mexico City.

A Canadian woman raised $40,000 to fight honor her late sister and fight ovarian cancer by riding 3,666 miles across the country in just 20 days. Which works out to an impressive average of 183 miles a day.

Ottawa bike couriers are responding to the drop off in business by making weed deliveries during the pandemic.

Sadly, it took the death of a young German scientist with “limitless potential” for a Quebec city to improve safety for bike riders.

The Paris bike boom is not a happy accident, but the result of years of planning to cut rising pollution levels.

Berlin is opening new Bicycle Streets in a pair of districts, giving people on bicycles the right-of-way and requiring drivers to adapt to their speeds. Although they could still use a little work.

One in four Japanese bike commuters began riding to avoid crowds during the coronavirus crisis.

Strangers rushed to rescue a Chinese woman after she rode her bike into a puddle, and suddenly found herself in water over her head.

 

Finally…

Your next ebike could look like a very narrow shipping box with wheels and pedals. Raise your damn seat, already.

And now this is a fat bike.

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

Coronado driver hits 4 bike riders, racist attack on preteen bike rider, and Velo Club La Grange talks Biking While Black

This is why people continue to die on our streets.

A man in Coronado plowed into four people riding their bicycles in a bike lane after having an undisclosed “medical issue” while driving.

Three of the bike riders were taken to the hospital, with injuries described as ranging from minor to serious.

The other rider declined medical treatment — as did the driver, even though he was unresponsive when police arrived.

So his condition is serious enough that he can pass out behind the wheel, but not so serious he needs medical attention afterwards.

And presumably, he was allowed to leave on his own, without so much as a ticket, despite putting three people in the hospital.

Because, you know, a medical condition.

Hopefully, someone will stop him from driving before it happens again. But don’t count on it.

Thanks to Phillip Young for the link.

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In yet another sign of the times we’re living in, a San Francisco man faces hate charges after assaulting a preteen boy.

The 12-year old victim was riding his bike to Walgreens with his friends when he stopped to help a woman who was sobbing in the parking lot.

It was then that 29-year-old Brendon Kruse “ran up to him and began screaming epithets,” according to SFist.

Though the victim’s friends ran away, the boy held tight — perhaps because Kruse prevented the victim from taking his bike — while Kruse continued yelling insults at him; Kruse at one point showed his lightning bolt and skull tattoos and explained to the boy they meant he “kills [plural n-word].” Kruse allegedly also threatened to kill the boy.

Kruse faces well-deserved charges for “criminal threats, child endangerment and false imprisonment with hate crime enhancements.”

Seriously, there’s not a pit deep enough for someone who could do that.

And something tells me we know who made the woman cry, too.

Note, I would have linked to the original story in the San Francisco Chronicle, except for their paywall. 

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While we’re on the subject of race, Velo Club La Grange, LA’s longtime leading cycling club, is taking a big step towards understanding what it means to bike while Black in the City of Angels.

On Tuesday, July 7th at 7 pm PT, La Grange will be hosting a virtual Town Hall where a number of local Black cyclists have agreed to share their perspective and experiences and then engage in an interactive question and answer session. The Town Hall is open to all. We invite you all to attend and hope you will join us for this critically important conversation. Please feel free to share with fellow cyclists and anyone interested!

The Town Hall meeting will take place online on Tuesday, July 7 @ 7pm; click here for access to the Zoom meeting

You can read the club’s Full Anti-Racism Statement here

Thanks to Jaycee Cary for the heads-up.

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Meanwhile, the World Economic Forum takes a look at the problems faced by Black bike riders in the US, and how bicycling could help drive racial equality, saying “It is time to dissociate racialist culture and bicycle culture; cycling in itself is agnostic to any culture.”

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This is who we share the road with.

A Seattle man faces two counts of vehicular assault for driving the wrong way up an offramp, around a road closure barrier installed by the state police, and onto a freeway that had been closed for a protest over police brutality.

He swerved around several cars that had been parked across the roadway to serve as barricades, and slammed into two of the protesters.

Twenty-four-year old Summer Taylor was killed, while another person remains in serious condition at a Seattle hospital.

No word yet on why he did it.

But we can probably all take a guess.

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A Friday town hall will discuss SB 288, a California state senate bill that would exempt bike and pedestrian projects from CEQA requirements.

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David Drexler forwards this opportunity to put your favorite transportation modality where your mouth is.

No, literally.

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Forget bike polo.

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

Horrible story from the UK, where a woman riding a mountain bike was attacked and severely beaten by a 60-something man wielding a six-foot long stick. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the link.

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Local

CicLAvia is now part of the Highline Network, which credits the organization with building a “unifying social fabric,” rather than permanent infrastructure.

 

State

She gets it. A Bakersfield columnist says the Slow Street movement slowly making its way through the state could change our cities for the better, permanently.

No surprise here, as the annual Sea Otter Classic has gone virtual for 2020.

A nearly $25 million state grant will build 74 low income apartments in Modesto, as well as rail improvements and a new 1.5 mile, high-quality bike path.

Tragic news from San Raphael, where a 36-year old man was struck and killed by a train after falling on the tracks when he reportedly rode through the crossing gates. Never do that, no matter how big a hurry you’re in or how tempting it is.

 

National

Senate leader Mitch McConnell calls the bike-friendly US House infrastructure bill a “Green New Deal masquerading as a transportation bill.” Works for me.

Streetsblog looks into the bill, and offers four things they think every advocate of sustainable transportation should know. Unfortunately, the bill is likely to be dead on arrival in the Senate as long McConnell is in charge.

Dump the woodie, and strap your board to your “uncool” ebike the next time you head out to surf.

A new clip-on device promises to add turn signals to any bike helmet; you can preorder it on Kickstarter starting at the equivalent of $51 for the next few days.

A Catholic paper briefly explains how the Madonna del Ghisallo became the patron saint of bicyclists, amid a story about the patron saints of various summer activities. Never mind that many of us don’t just ride in the summertime  Still, a little devine intervention couldn’t hurt; I never ride without my helmet, or my Madonna del Ghisallo medal.

Maybe there’s hope after all. Tacoma, Washington has repealed a 26-year old ordinance requiring bike helmets for all bike riders. Which only leaves another 20 or so cities in the state to go.

About damn time. A new Colorado law gives bike riders the right of way in bike lanes, requiring drivers to yield to people on bicycles. Which seems like an obvious thing, but apparently isn’t. At least not as far as California is concerned.

A South Chicago Bike Out rolled to protest a decision to keep cops in schools, as well as another to allow a scrap metal recycler to move to the area.

The New York Times considers whether the city is finally on the road to becoming a bicycling city, while a 102-year old Queens bike shop struggles to keep up with the pandemic bike boom.

The Guardian looks at the Black-led groups that are biking against racism in New York.

The Bike League bizarrely named Florida the nation’s tenth most bike-friendly state — despite consistently being the nation’s most dangerous state for bike riders and pedestrians. Apparently, it’s a great place to ride a bike, if you survive.

 

International

CyclingTips explains why the dreaded speed wobbles happen when you’re descending. And more importantly, what to do about it.

The Business Times says bicycles are edging cars off the streets of Europe as the coronavirus accelerates a shift away from motor vehicles.

The bike boom has hit Mexico City, too, with new riders taking to a network of popup bike lanes on major arteries throughout the city, to minimize one-on-one contact on public transportation. Meanwhile, here in Los Angeles, home to the world Climate Mayor, <crickets>. 

A Winnipeg, Manitoba business is confronting Covid-19 by paying its employees $50 a month to bike to work.

After inexplicably destroying tens of thousands of Jump bikes around the world, new owner Lime is reintroducing the dockless ebike system to London.

Six years after losing her leg — and nearly her life — when she was hit by a distracted truck driver, a 28-year old London woman is riding a bike for the first time by using a three-wheeled adaptive handcycle.

An English man in his 70’s was critically injured in a collision with a bike rider. Pedestrians can be unpredictable, and very fragile. So always ride carefully anytime they’re around.

The auto-centric UK lawyer who calls himself Mr. Loophole accuses government officials of rushing through plans for a one-year e-scooter pilot program. Even though the country is over a year behind the rest of the world.

No bias here. A Scottish columnist tosses told water on Vision Zero, saying the only way to prevent traffic deaths is to ban cars, which he says is no more realistic than banning kitchen knives to prevent stabbings. Yet the example he uses is a 91-year old driver who killed a three-year old boy outside a toy store, as if nothing could have been done to ensure someone that old could safely drive car.

After walking out of the hospital, British BMX champ Jason Bynoe thanked the medical staff who cared for him after he somehow ended up under his car when he swerved to avoid a deer; he suffered multiple fractures, as well as horrific road rash, and feared he would never walk again, let alone compete.

It’s not just an American problem. A popular Spanish bicyclist was run down and killed by a heartless hit-and-run driver who left him to die in the street.

Turkish actor Engin Altan Duzyatan is one of us, and so is his four-year old son.

He gets it, too. The German ambassador to Pakistan urges the country to get on its bicycles.

A joint city and state committee was formed to examine bicycle safety after a Brisbane, Australia woman was killed riding her bike, just feet from the hospital where she worked.

An Aussie mountain biker was lucky to survive falling over 30 feet down an unmarked mine shaft. And needless to say, he’s planning to sue.

 

Competitive Cycling

Sad news from Belgium, where 20-year old amateur cyclist Niels De Vriendt died of a heart attack, after crashing in the country’s first bike race following the coronavirus lockdown.

Disappointing news, as SoCal’s Over the Hump mountain bike racing series has been cancelled for this year.

The NTT cycling team holds the lead in the pretend Tour de France currently taking place on Zwift, as France’s Julien Bernard took the pretend second stage.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to rob a man to steal the bike he’s walking, make sure he isn’t walking it because the tire is flat. Going for a bike ride while suffering from Covid-19 may be the best argument yet to require helmets for MMA fighters.

And evidently, cars have been around a lot longer than we thought.

………

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

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