Tag Archive for traffic deaths

Bad year for SoCal bike deaths, urban roads get deadlier, and Transportation Comm’s new vice chair is one of us

Last year was another terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year for SoCal bike riders.

But at least it was better than the year before.

Maybe.

According to our latest count, at least 82* people lost their lives while riding a bicycle in the seven county Southern California region last year, just two less than the previous year.

Although that figure is likely an undercount; I’ve heard of a half dozen or more deaths this year that I wasn’t able to officially confirm, but which undoubtedly happened.

It’s also the same number of SoCal bicycling deaths reported to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for 2019, the last year before the pandemic, when 81 SoCal riders also lost their lives.

The total for last year reflects the 26 bike riders I counted killed in Los Angeles County last year, which again is likely a dramatic undercount.

A total of 35 bike riders lost their lives in LA County in 2021, which was over twice the total of 17 that I had counted; I also counted 15 in 2020, compared to 27 reported by the NHTSA.

Which suggests that the local media is failing to report a number of bicycling deaths in the Los Angeles area, for whatever reason.

I also counted 14 bicycling deaths in the City of Los Angeles last year, which is in line with verified totals of 18 and 15 in 2021 and 2020.

Further afield, San Diego County suffered 12 deaths last year, which was a significant improvement over 17 in the previous year, though much higher than the 7 and 8 people killed riding bikes in the county in 2020 and 2019, respectively.

Meanwhile, Orange County appeared to have their worst year in recent memory, with 17 people killed* riding bikes last year, compared to just 7 in 2021, 15 in 2020, and 13 in 2019.

Although it is important to note that only the totals for 2020 and 2019 have been verified by the NHTSA; 2021 data isn’t currently available through their website.

Riverside and San Bernardino Counties also showed increases last year, with 11 bicycling deaths in Riverside County, and 10 in San Bernardino County. Ventura County suffered 4 deaths — half the previous year’s total — while Imperial County recorded none for the third year in a row.

Here’s a quick recap of bicycling deaths for each of the seven counties.

Los Angeles County

  • 2022 – 26
  • 2021 – 35
  • 2020 – 27
  • 2019 – 38

Orange County

  • 2022 – 17
  • 2021 – 7
  • 2020 – 14
  • 2019 – 13

San Diego County

  • 2022 – 12
  • 2021 – 17
  • 2020 – 7
  • 2019 – 8

Riverside County

  • 2022 – 11
  • 2021 – 9
  • 2020 – 8
  • 2019 – 5

San Bernardino County

  • 2022 – 10
  • 2021 – 7
  • 2020 – 6
  • 2019 – 7

Imperial County

  • 2022 – 0
  • 2021 – 0
  • 2020 – 0
  • 2019 – 6

Ventura County

  • 2022 – 4
  • 2021 – 8
  • 2020 – 4
  • 2019 – 4

Source: 2021-2022 BikinginLA, except 2021 LA County data from Los Angeles Times; 2019-2020 NHTSA FARS data

While compiling records of this sort is necessary to bring about desperately needed changes to our streets, it also reduces human tragedy and loss to a statistic.

So if you want to see the people behind these numbers who we’ve so needlessly lost, start here and just keep scrolling.

Photo by Ted McDonald from Pixabay.

Correction: A comment from Dawn made it clear that I had miscategorized a story about her father’s August death in Irvine. 

*After correcting the error and adding it back into the totals for OC, that made 17 people killed riding their bikes in the county last year, and 82 in Southern California, instead of 16 and 81, respectively, as I had originally written.

My apologies for the mistake. 

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On a related subject, rural areas are becoming safer, while urban environments are growing ever deadlier.

And the photo at the bottom of this thread goes a long way towards explaining why.

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Promising news about the new LA City Council Transportation Committee members we mentioned yesterday, at least two of whom have taken bike tours with the new BikeLA (formerly the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, or LACBC).

Meanwhile, new CD11 Councilmember and Committee Vice Chair Traci Park is one of us, as well.

Now if she just votes that way, we should be in good shape.

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Transportation PAC Streets For All is hosting their next virtual happy hour next Wednesday, featuring my councilmember, CD4’s Nithya Raman.

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

A former contestant on the UK’s version of The Apprentice criticizes plans for traffic filters on Oxford streets, saying you won’t be able to drive more than 15 minutes in any direction — and somehow manages to get the whole thing wrong.

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

A British Columbia man faces charges for stealing a truck and using it to smash through a gate, then hoping on a bicycle to make his escape after the truck was disabled in the crash. Which raises a lot of questions, like whether the fact that he wasn’t charged with stealing the bike means he just happened to have it with him in case he needed to pedal away from the crime scene.

There’s a special place in hell for the Kiwi ebike rider who faces charges for repeatedly kicking a wheelchair-bound handcyclist in the head for no apparent reason, unless he was upset that she could go faster than he could on his ebike. Which is a ridiculous reason to do something so horrific.

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Local 

Protected bike lanes are usually intended to improve safety, but Burbank residents wanted the new quarter-mile protected bike lane on Leland Way in order to halt graffiti and drag racing.

A travel magazine recommends touring West Hollywood by ebike, but apparently can’t distinguish between WeHo and nearby Beverly Hills.

 

State

No news is good news, right?

 

National

Even an automotive website questions whether the newest generation of electric SUVs are too big, too heavy and too fast. Depends on whether the goal is to get from here to there, or to send as many people as possible to the promised land.

Forbes looks at five trends this year that could impact the future of transportation. Although the modest state and local tax rebates for ebikes pale in comparison to the massive federal benefits for electric car buyers.

A writer for Adventure Journal geeks out over an 1880s ad for a Penny Farthing from Boston’s Columbia Bicycle Company. Then again, he’s not the only one geeking out, since I have a version of that ad on a t-shirt.

House Beautiful recommends the best bike storage racks for your home or apartment.

Singletracks considers the ethics of editing trails to preserve them or remove hazards.

Digital Journal addresses one of the burning questions of our time — how to take your dog with you when you ride your bike.

My friends at West Seattle Blog managed to scoop the local news media about hit-and-run and vehicular homicide charges against an alleged killer driver who fled the scene after running down a 63-year old man riding his ebike home from work.

An Arizona man has made a remarkable recovery following the crash in a Show Low, Arizona master’s race that killed one man and seriously injured several riders; 37-year old Shawn Michael Chock was quietly sentenced to 26-1/2 years behind bars for second-degree murder and felony aggravated assault.

Denver announced the return of the city’s highly popular ebike rebate program at the end of this month, although at a reduced level, with $300 vouchers for buyers or regular ebikes, and $500 for e-cargo bikes.

North Carolina’s Department of Transportation is giving away bike helmets to organizations to give away to people who need them.

St. Petersburg, Florida, is remaking a dangerous residential boulevard with barriers at four intersections, forcing motorists to turn while allowing pedestrians and bike riders to pass through, and effectively turning it into a bicycle boulevard, even if they don’t use the term.

A kindhearted Florida man spends his days refurbishing and assembling bicycles so children in need can get to school, and adults can ride to work.

 

International

Calgary bicycle advocates are calling for safer bike infrastructure, after reports of snow and ice clogging bikeways and creating a hazard for riders. Here in SoCal, our snow and ice comes in liquid form, but still creates hazards on days like this. So be careful out there. 

Bike Portland goes riding in London. Which I deeply regret I didn’t get a chance to do when my wife and I visited earlier this century.

British foldie maker Brompton will begin sourcing more parts from other countries, over fears that tensions between China and Taiwan could result in supply chain disruptions.

If you’re already wanted on an outstanding warrant for failure to appear, maybe illegally riding your bike on a pair of UK highways isn’t the best idea.

The newly crowned world darts champ credits a broken hip suffered in a bicycle crash when he was 15 year old with setting him on the path to pointed greatness.

The Guardian follows along as an Australian woman attempts to set a new record by riding 2,500 miles in 13 days.

No surprise here, as a new Aussie study shows the biggest barrier to biking is a fear of cars. Personally, I’m not afraid of cars. But the people driving them scare the shit out of me.

 

Competitive Cycling

Four time Tour de France champ Chris Froome will finally get a chance to go for five after his Israel Premier Tech team got one of two wildcard invitations to the race, with the other going to Norway’s Uno-X.

A ‘cross fan captures the chaos after Ryan Cortjens crashed at the Superprestige Diegem, and apparently forgot to get the hell out of the way.

 

Finally…

Now you, too, can build your very own DIY 6-passenger, throttle-controlled ebike. That feeling when no one wants to steal you bike, even if you want them to.

And who says you need two wheels to mountain bike?

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

 

US traffic deaths keep climbing while the world drops, Cyber Monday bike deals, and ’tis the season for bike fundraising

It’s finally here!

No, not Cyber Monday. It’s the first full week of the 8th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive — your chance to help keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day!

And what could be better than that?

Just take a moment, and join over a dozen of your friends and neighbors who’ve already given to support this site, and our work shining a light on all the news that effects your safety, convenience and right to ride on the road. 

Give today via PayPal or Zelle.

Or if you’d rather send a check through snail mail, let me know in the comments below; if there’s enough interest to outweigh the cost, we’ll give it a shot. 

And let’s all give a special thanks to James L, Stephen C, Bonnie W, Michael S, Robert K, Anne F, Arthur B, Ted F, Mark J, Bryan B, Jame I, Lorena C, Samer S, Joseph R and Michael S for their generous donations to help keep this site up and running for you. 

So don’t wait. Just click the link, and give now!

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If you think American roads are getting worse, you’re right.

The US was one of just three major countries to see a rise in traffic deaths last year, tying Switzerland with a five percent jump, while Ireland increased a more modest two percent.

That compares with a whopping 27 percent drop in Italy, followed closely by Hungary, Turkey, Spain, France and Sweden.

And not surprisingly, it’s the people outside of cars paying the brunt of the price, according to the New York Times.

In 2021, nearly 43,000 people died on American roads, the government estimates. And the recent rise in fatalities has been particularly pronounced among those the government classifies as most vulnerable — cyclists, motorcyclists, pedestrians.

Much of the familiar explanation for America’s road safety record lies with a transportation system primarily designed to move cars quickly, not to move people safely.

“Motor vehicles are first, highways are first, and everything else is an afterthought,” said Jennifer Homendy, chair of the National Transportation Safety Board. “Other countries started to take seriously pedestrian and cyclist injuries in the 2000s — and started making that a priority in both vehicle design and street design — in a way that has never been committed to in the United States,” Mr. Freemark said.

In fact, the paper reports that the US and France had similar traffic fatality rates in the 1990s.

But one of those countries made major changes to improve safety. And that country was not the US, where drivers now kill road users at three times the rate of French motorists.

Other developed countries lowered speed limits and built more protected bike lanes. They moved faster in making standard in-vehicle technology like automatic braking systems that detect pedestrians, and vehicle hoods that are less deadly to them. They designed roundabouts that reduce the danger at intersections, where fatalities disproportionately occur.

In the U.S. in the past two decades, by contrast, vehicles have grown significantly bigger and thus deadlier to the people they hit. Many states curb the ability of local governments to set lower speed limits. The five-star federal safety rating that consumers can look for when buying a car today doesn’t take into consideration what that car might do to pedestrians.

Or people on bicycles, for that matter, as we all pay the price for government inaction on our roads.

US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg promises that’s going to change.

Let’s hope so. Because it has to.

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Today’s common theme is Cyber Monday bike deals.

Wired lists the best deals on ebikes and e-scooters.

Electrek offers their picks for the best Cyber Monday ebike deals.

Cycling Weekly recommends the sales on Adidas bikewear and bike shoes.

CNN goes all in on REI’s Cyber Monday deals.

Meanwhile, Road.cc warns that scammers may try to cheat you out of your hard-earned cash by setting up fake websites for companies, including FSA/Vision, SRAM and British mountain bike and dirt jump bikemaker DMR.

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We’re not the only ones asking for your hard-earned money over the holidays, with Giving Tuesday just one day away.

CicLAvia wants to give you a chance to win new Brompton in exchange for a donation through tomorrow.

Streets For All is hosting a fundraising party on December 9th.

And a fundraiser for LA’s legendary bike co-op Bicycle Kitchen is hoping to raise $20,000 to celebrate their 20th anniversary; it stands at a little over $5,400 now.

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

A driver in New Mexico faces charges for the road rage shooting of a bike rider that began with a punishment pass for the perceived crime of riding in the roadway, and escalated into a shoving match before the man pulled out a gun and shot the 22-year old victim in the cheek.

London’s former bicycling commissioner Andrew Gilligan says forget the fake claims and bad journalism, because the city’s Low Traffic Neighborhoods, aka LTNs, really do reduce traffic — and usually reduce pollution, too.

After a London man explains what led up to a viral road rage incident in which an SUV driver ran over his bike, a self-proclaimed driver and cyclist seems to put much of the blame on the victim, while saying ego seemed to get the best of both of them.

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

A San Francisco man faces multiple charges for stealing a city bus and going on a nearly two-mile joyride through the city, crashing into ten cars in the process; bizarrely, one of those charges is for operating a bicycle without “breaks.” Which should serve as a reminder to always take breaks during your bike ride if you plan to hijack a bus.

Murder charges have been filed against a bike-riding Las Vegas woman who repeatedly hit 53-year old woman in the head with a rake, for no apparent reason; there was also no explanation for why she even had one on her bike.

A standard poodle was seriously injured when he was run down by a hit-and-run rider on a bikeshare bike while walking on a London pedestrian-only path, leaving the dog’s owner with a $2,400 vet bill.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. An English bike rider was fined a lousy £2,500 — the equivalent of just over $3000 — after being convicted of careless and inconsiderate cycling for the crash that killed a motorcyclist, and left him with life-changing injuries.

Forget doping. A cheating Chinese marathon runner was banned for life after allegedly riding a bikeshare bike for over four and a half miles of the 26-mile course.

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Local 

Three LA city councilmembers have introduced a motion banning the practice spot road widening, in which private builders are required to widen a small section of roadway in anticipation of widening the entire thing at a later date; LA bike riders were recently blamed for a half-block long “bike lane to nowhere” on Santa Monica Blvd that actually isn’t.

Developer Rick Caruso spent $162.42 for every vote he received in his losing campaign for Los Angeles mayor, while Mayor-elect Karen Bass spent a relatively paltry $10.15; newly elected City Controller Kenneth Mejia spent a frugal $1.30 per vote.

The Port of Long Beach is now accepting concept papers for new bike and pedestrian infrastructure projects that could qualify for grant funding.

 

State 

A 14-year old San Diego boy suffered serious injuries when police allege he rode his bike through a stop sign, and into the path of an SUV driver.

San Diego City Councilmember Stephen Whitburn is calling for lower speed limits on the city’s most dangerous roads, taking advantage of a recently passed state law allowing cities to set speeds as low as 15 mph in some cases.

Troubling news from Riverside County, where a bike rider was hospitalized in life-threatening condition after being struck by a driver Saturday morning; unfortunately, no details are available.

A Berkeley man in his 30s was critically injured when he was rear-ended by a driver while riding his bike Friday evening.

An “anti-capitalist” Berkeley bike shop is closing after 51 years to make room for a 26-story apartment building. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Bad news from Oakdale, where a 67-year old man was killed when police allege he swerved his bike in front of an oncoming driver in what sounds like a Single Witness Suicide Swerve.

 

National

Cycling Savvy offers advice on fixing and preventing flats on your ebike.

They get it. The 150-year old Popular Science says ebikes could be the future of transit in urban centers — if cities take steps now to encourage and accommodate them.

VeloNews considers ten ways riding a bike can improve your mental and physical health, from lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease to improving sleep and sex life. Although you may have to sign up for a free account to get past their paywall.

A writer for Outside says he spent $800 fixing up a very mediocre 1990s era Diamondback Topanga, and couldn’t be happier. I want to do the same with my old 1981 Trek if I ever have the money.

A Washington driver was charged with DUI, vehicular assault and child endangerment after she seriously injured a bike rider while driving under the influence, then rear-ended a truck attempting to flee the scene — with her two kids riding in her car, sans seatbelts.

Anchorage, Alaska may not be the first place you think of for progressive urbanism, yet the city just eliminated all off-street parking requirements for new buildings, while adding a requirement to include bike parking.

After his high-end Pinarello bike and a laptop were stolen in a burglary, a Texas man got them both back within hours, thanks to an assist from a local bike shop.

Going over his handlebars after hitting a chunk of pavement may have saved a Texas pastor’s life, after the doctors treating him discovered he had cancer.

A 2022 book from a former adjunct professor at the University of Minnesota details the conversations she and her husband had traveling 14,000 miles in 14 months with two fully loaded bicycles.

A Pittsburgh newspaper takes the state GOP to task for cynically torpedoing a popular bike safety bill by attaching an unrelated bill appointing a special prosecutor in southeast Pennsylvania, in an effort to force out Philadelphia’s popular progressive DA.

 

International

Whew. Road.cc readers conclude that it’s okay to stand your bike upside down when you take a break.

Nice gesture from Rapha, who marked Black Friday by donating $150,000 to World Bicycle Relief to provide much-needed bikes in Africa.

More Dutch bicyclists are ending up in the emergency room while drunk or stoned, with a whopping 84% increase since 2012.

A pair of self-employed Frenchmen avoided the World Cup crowds at the Doha airport by riding their bikes three months and roughly 4,350 to see their home team compete, while promoting the benefits of sustainable travel.

In one of the rare stories that’s not hidden behind their paywall, VeloNews reports 23,385 people have now successfully Everested — that is, ridden uphill equal to the 29,032 feet elevation of Mount Everest. But only one man from Austria has done it on a unicycle.

An Indian firm has invented a wheelchair that converts into a road bike.

A South African car finance company would be more than happy to write a loan for a $15,765 Pinarello Dogma F, but no one has taken them up on it yet.

The Philippines honored people on two wheels with yesterday’s National Bicycle Day, as advocates call on the government to take steps to ensure the safety of bike riders.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews questions who will dominate women’s cycling after the great Annemiek van Vlueten retires. But again, you may have to sign up for a free account just to read it.

 

Finally…

That feeling when a bike-riding Queen Victoria becomes a squid-faced woman on a bike. Your next EV could be the 3D-printed illegitimate child of a small passenger car and an ebike, complete with hexagonal wheels.

And who needs a kid’s carseat when you can just hook a baby carriage onto your bike?

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Why US traffic safety is behind the rest of the world, LA closes Chandler Bike Bath gap, and getting Inglewood kids on bikes

Before we get started, a quick reminder that Daylight Savings ends this weekend, and it’s time to set your clocks back on Sunday. 

Which means it will get dark earlier, and you could find yourself riding in it more.

So pack lights with you, even if you don’t plan to be out that light; I’ve found myself riding in the dark more than once because of a flat or some other mechanical. 

And don’t forget that even an extra hour of sleep is enough to throw drivers off their already negligible game. So ride defensively and use extra care for the next week or so.

I don’t want to write about you because some fool couldn’t manage to concentrate behind the wheel.

Photo from Pixabay

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Writing for CityLab, Harvard visiting fellow David Zipper recounts that US Transportation Secretary Pete recently formed a new traffic safety program “to help countries around the world learn from our best practices in planning and modernizing transportation.”

As if we actually have any.

As Zipper points out,

The US underperformance in road safety is especially dramatical: 11.4 Americans per 100,000 died in crashes in 2020, a number that dwarfs countries including Spain (2.9), Israel (3.3) and New Zealand (6.3). And unlike most developed nations, US roadways have grown more deadly during the last two decades (including during the pandemic), especially for those outside of cars. Last year saw the most pedestrians killed in the US in 40 years, and deaths among those biking rose 44% from 2010 to 2020…

The closer you look, the clearer it becomes that the US traffic safety crisis is not a reflection of geography or culture. It is the result of policy decisions that elevated fast car travel and automaker profits over roadway safety. Other countries made different choices, and they’ve saved lives as a result.

He goes on to add that the US has fallen behind other countries to the point that we hit a 16-year high for traffic fatalities last year, at the same time Japan and Norway posted their lowest fatality rates since the 1940s, when both countries were recovering from the devastation of WWII.

Not surprisingly, there are some pretty obvious reasons for that.

Europe, for example, has created many more car-free and car-light urban neighborhoods than the US. Since motor vehicles play a role in virtually all roadway deaths, their removal from the urban core is a big boost for safety. Meanwhile, countries like Canada and France have embraced automatic traffic cameras — devices that are banned in many US states — to deter speeding and running red lights. Likewise, safe infrastructure enhancements like roundabouts and road diets have been adopted more enthusiastically in other countries.

A widening gap is also visible in car regulations, which have grown relatively stricter abroad. A case in point: The European Union added pedestrian safety tests to NCAP crash ratings over two decades ago, and Japan, China and Australia now conduct them as well. The US still does not.

He also notes that when famed urban planner Jan Gehl first proposed that Copenhagen remake its streets in favor of bicycles to reduce reliance on motor vehicles, he was told they were Danes, not Italians.

Sort of like we’re constantly told this isn’t Copenhagen. Or Amsterdam. Or any other bike-centric city local NIMBYs have vaguely heard of.

It’s worth a few minutes of your day to read the whole thing.

But if you’re short on time today, just commit every word of this to memory —

For the US, this may be the most important road safety lesson from abroad: Many of the best solutions are quite simple. Build slower streets. Penalize reckless drivers quickly and reliably. Use regulations and taxes — on vehicle weight as well as fuel — to nudge the car industry toward smaller, safer models.

Seriously.

Thanks to Molly Timmons for the heads-up.

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We missed this one somehow.

Probably because we weren’t invited, which is apparently what happens when you’re critical of city leaders.

But still.

Los Angeles officials celebrated the completion of the long-planned Chandler Bicycle Connection yesterday, providing a low-stress, protected bikeway connecting the Orange Line Bike Path with Burbank’s popular Chandler Bike Path.

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Former pro Elliot Jackson offers a progress report on the Grow Cycling Foundation, a two-year old program to “provide opportunities for underserved communities to experience all that the bike has to offer” — starting with offering bike training at Inglewood elementary schools and building an Inglewood pump track.

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The LACBC is hosting a pair of Bicycling 101 classes covering Principles of Traffic Law and Riding With Traffic, as well as a short ride exploring landmarks in Downtown Los Angeles.

And don’t forget their Bike Fest fundraiser in DTLA tomorrow.

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Gravel Bike California explores the unpaved side of the Inland Empire.

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Of course Julia Roberts is one of us.

Which explains where she gets that famous smile.

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Take a few minutes for a morning mountain bike break.

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

A Michigan TV station catches scofflaw motorists driving salmon on the westbound portion of a roadway, which is only supposed to be open to people on bicycles.

An Irish cabbie threatened to run over a bike rider if he ever touches his cab again, after the bicyclist tapped it to ask him not to park in the bike lane.

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

Sarah Jessica Parker jumped back to avoid a bike rider as she was filming the second season of And Just Like That… on the streets of New York, though it was unclear if the scofflaw rider was part of the show.

Tokyo police are continuing their crackdown on scofflaw bicyclists who get caught blow through traffic lights, ride salmon or ride too fast on sidewalks.

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Local

The New York Times says Los Angeles pedestrians are looking forward to California’s new law decriminalizing jaywalking. Even though most Angelenos have probably never even heard of it yet.

Props to Walk ‘N Rollers founder Jim Shanman, who was named a Culver City Hero by the local edition of Patch. And deservedly so.

Streetsblog offers more on the overwhelming success of the Move Culver City project.

 

State 

Wealthy San Diego homeowners are suing the city over its plans to spend development mitigation funds equitably throughout the city, arguing that they should be spent right where the structures are built.

Ramona High School’s mountain bike team could see one of its former members on the US Olympic Team in 2024.

Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine is one of us, taking his young daughters for a family bike ride in Montecito.

 

National

In a surprising study apparently beamed back to us from the future, the January edition of Accident Analysis & Prevention reports a bicycle simulator lab at Oregon State University revealed bike boxes are the safest form of intersection treatment for bike riders, compared to mixing zones and bicycle signals.

Electrek says all the signs point to a new low-cost bike coming from Rad Power Bikes.

Portland officials respond to the death of a bike rider by routing truck traffic away from a dangerous intersection, after she was right hooked by a truck driver recently. Which is exactly how Vision Zero is supposed to work, unlike in a certain SoCal megalopolis we could name.

They get it. Community leaders in Albuquerque, New Mexico fight for equity and investment on one of the city’s most dangerous corridors, arguing that streets are for people, too.

Members of a bicycling group in Grand Rapids, Michigan, can’t understand who would shoot and kill an 18-year old man as he rode on a local bike path. Or why.

Streetsblog reports drivers crash into buildings an average of 100 times a day in the US, examining the case of a Richmond VA woman who has suffered over $100,000 in damages to her home as a result of five crashes in 15 years.

A second man has been arrested in the bludgeoning death of a 49-year old Florida man, who was beaten more than ten times with a tire iron as he rode his bike; the random attack was part of a crime spree using the same weapon on a number of cars and windows, as well as in the of beating an elderly man.

A suspected serial killer faces charges in the death of a 43-year old Florida woman, who disappeared 31 years ago while riding her cruiser bike.

 

International

Momentum examines the efforts of Montreal to make North America’s best bike city even better for people on two wheels.

Meet a 15-year old stunt biker from Kashmir. Although it would be nice if they’d included video of him in action.

That’s more like it. An Aussie driver gets a minimum of five years behind bars for the “despicable and cowardly” hit-and-run death of a 60-year old man riding a bike. Then again, every hit-and-run fits that description.

An Australian man is challenging the settlement he received in 2013, when he was struck while riding his bike when he was just 15 by the man who would become the premier of Australia’s Victoria state a year later; he claims he was ordered to stay quiet and never got a copy of the settlement.

 

Competitive Cycling

VeloNews looks at pro cycling’s annual game of musical chairs, otherwise known as the men’s WorldTour transfer market.

Cycling Tips discovers there is no cycling route so iconic that Google reviewers won’t trash it.

Bianchi got spanked by UCI, cycling’s governing body, who told them their new Oltre RC bike is okay but the Air Deflector wings designed to channel airflow around the head tube aren’t.

 

Finally…

Nothing like stopping by your favorite LBS for a few tubes and a couple skeins of yarn. Or your bike basket beagle biting your breakfast.

And that feeling when you design a 14 passenger bike, but don’t know if it has peddles or pedals.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Redondo Beach teen dragged by hit-and-run driver, callous Mar Vista council member, and 3rd ST protected bike lanes

Whatever the hell illness I’ve been dealing with appears to have broken finally, so let’s ease back into things by catching up on a few stories we’ve missed, along with today’s news. 

And please forgive me for not keeping track of who sent me links this time. Under the circumstances, I was happy just to keep track of my meals.

………

While we were gone, Redondo Beach police were searching for the hit-and-run driver who ran over a 15-year old boy riding an ebike, dragging the boy and his bike underneath for half a block.

When the kid somehow managed to free himself from under the truck, he demanded that the driver stop his truck and get out.

Instead the jerk — which is the mildest term we can use here — backed up his pickup, freeing the boy’s bicycle, before zooming off.

Thankfully, the victim wasn’t seriously injured, though he did suffer severe road rash.

Let’s hope the driver is feeling his pain.

………

This is why people keep dying on our streets.

An elected member of the Mar Vista Community Council explains why she opposes extending the Venice Blvd protected bike lanes and bus lanes.

And no, she doesn’t just sound callous.

Meanwhile, Streetsblog discovers newly protected bike lanes on Venice Blvd in the opposite direction, in front of the Helms Bakery complex.

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The new half-mile long 3rd Street protected bike lane through DTLA is a thing now.

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The East Side Riders Bike Club continues to give back by feeding the community on a weekly basis.

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The Los Angeles Times offers a guide for the bike-curious, starting with what they describe as eight breezy bike trails that will teach you about LA as you ride.

As long as you take a very expansive view of what’s LA, that is.

Not so forgivable is their framing of a story on “nine bike clubs to cruise LA with” for people who are afraid to ride alone. Not all of which are actually clubs.

And none of which require joining out of fear; you can also participate if you want to give back to the community, or just enjoy riding with like-minded people.

Seriously, they should know better.

………

The governor finally signed Assemblymember Laura Friedman’s parking reform bill, no thanks to our “climate mayor.”

………

The US men’s soccer team is one of us.

Or 28 of us, anyway.

https://twitter.com/USMNT/status/1573961105554145281

………

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

Infuriating story from Redlands, where doctor and semi-pro cyclist Kyle Cooper was seriously injured in an apparent hit-and-run. Yet the local cops refused to believe him, somehow convinced it was just an “oopsie.”

A 28-year old Michigan woman faces charges for attacking a 19-year old man with a machete for no apparent reason as he rode his bike to work; fortunately, the victim survived his wounds.

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

Police in San Diego are looking for gunman who escaped by bicycle after shooting a 35-year old man in an aqueduct near westbound state Route 94; the victim was expected to survive, despite multiple gunshot wounds.

An English e-scooter rider faces charges for allegedly threatening a van driver with a meat cleaver for passing too closely.

………

Local

Talk about throwing your life away. Twenty-three-year old Long Beach driver Carlo Navarro was sentenced to a very well-deserved 25 to life for wiping out an entire family; Navarro was convicted on three counts of murder for killing a mother, father and young child in a drunken, high-speed crash as they walked home from Trick-or-Treating on Halloween three years earlier.

Streets For All is hosting a meet-and-greet in Venice tomorrow night with Eric Darling, who is running to replace Mike Bonin in CD11.

Metro is hosting a virtual meeting tomorrow evening to discuss extending the LA River Bike Path through DTLA, as well as a virtual and in-person meeting on Saturday.

Pasadena approved 19 projects to replace the now-cancelled $230 million Gold Line grade separation, including a number of active transportation projects.

 

State 

Governor Newsom has signed a bill giving pedestrians priority at traffic lights by requiring leading pedestrian intervals; the recently signed Bicycle Omnibus Bill extends them to bicyclists, as well.

A 22-year old man got a well-deserved nine years behind bars for the drunken hit-and-run crash that killed 75-year old Allen Hunter II in Solano Beach last year; Lucas Beau Morgans had a BAC over twice the legal limit when he was arrested an hour and a half after the fatal crash.

Sad news from Sunnyvale, where a man riding a bicycle was killed in a collision Monday evening.

Oakland announced plans for a 16-mile protected greenway, providing the first walkable, bikeable path from Oakland’s Lake Merritt to the South Hayward BART station.

 

National

A new book examines how suburban vigilantes and NIMBYs took over in the latter part of the last century. Hint: It’s not just suburban NIMBYs and vigilantes.

Something is seriously wrong when an award-winning children’s book about a homemade bicycle assembled from scraps is banned thanks to thin-skinned cops.

A mother argues that rather than being dangerous, riding a bike on the road is one of the best things she does with her kids.

Pink Bike offers a guide to your dream job in the bike industry, with 17 high-level bike jobs that are open right now.

Seattle-based Rad Power Bikes is asking owners to park their RadWagon 4 bikes over fears the tires could pop while you’re riding. Which is probably a bad thing.

Ruth Orkin, the then 29-year old daughter of silent film star Mary Ruby, took the first unposed, color photograph to appear on a magazine cover — after riding her bicycle to New York when she was just 17.

A 71-year old New York man is using his megaphone — literally — to demand “Tour de France guys” in Central Park slow down. Never mind that he’s been convicted of election fraud.

Bicycling examines the nation’s most dangerous road for bicyclists, running eastward from Queens in New York State. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A Boston money manager still rides his bike to work at 95-years old.

 

International

Cycling Weekly talks with a sports psychologist about how to overcome the six most common bicycling fears. Yet somehow, they don’t even mention my biggest fear — getting run down by a distracted driver.

Bike riders in London, Ontario call for safer streets after a student was killed in a hit-and-run, saying it feels like life or death on the roads.

A British driver faces charges for the alleged stoned-driving death of a popular club cyclist participating in a time trial.

Thirty-year old Scottish twin brothers will stand trial for murdering a 63-year old man taking part in a fundraising ride; the men allegedly beat the victim to death after crashing into him while driving drunk.

Runners may have the bulls, but bike riders in Pamplona, Spain had to overcome the hills.

Taking a cue from Bob Dylan at the Newport Folk Festival, Italy’s Bianchi goes electric. And yes, you have to be pretty damn old to get that reference.

 

Competitive Cycling

UCI announced a second Super Worlds, with all cycling events — including road, track, BMX, mountain bike and paracycling — taking place in the same week in Haute-Savoie, France, four years after next year’s Super Worlds in Glasgow.

This year’s Worlds were marked with drama when race favorite Mathieu van der Poel abandoned during the race, later revealing that he’d been arrested after confronting teenagers who repeatedly knocked on his door the night before the race, keeping him up all night. He was fined the equivalent of nearly $1,000 after being convicted on common assault.

 

Finally…

What if cities had driving and non-driving sections? Sure, you may be champion of the world, but your socks are too damn long.

And that feeling when you can buy a state-of-the-art hubless ebike for less than a concert ticket.

With free shipping, too.

………

A belated l’shanah tovah to everyone celebrating this week!

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

13 previous car crashes for nurse who killed six people in Windsor Hills, and women and retirees fastest ebike adopters

Talk about keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late.

According to the Los Angeles Times, 37-year old, Texas-based traveling nurse Nicole Lorraine Linton was involved in 13 prior crashes before she killed six people and injured eight others after allegedly blowing through a red light at up to 90 mph on Thursday.

Yes, you read that right.

Thirteen previous crashes, including a 2020 crash that totaled both vehicles. And yet she was somehow allowed to keep driving, despite demonstrating a clear inability to do so safely.

Either that, or she was plagued by some of the worst luck in the history of driving.

Linton was formally charged with six counts of murder — one for each victim — along with five counts of vehicular homicide. The unborn child of the pregnant woman killed in the crash accounts for the discrepancy; the death of the eight-and-a-half month unborn baby is eligible for a murder charge, but not vehicular homicide.

LA County DA George Gascón concluded her prior crash record indicated she was aware of the risks of driving in a dangerous manner, making her eligible for the murder charges.

Linton faces up to life behind bars upon conviction. She’s currently being held without bail after the previous $9 million bond was revoked.

Thanks to How The West Was Saved for the heads-up.

……….

Meanwhile, the news is not good for Anne Heche.

The actress, who was seriously burned crashing her car into a Mar Vista home at high speed on Friday, is reportedly in extremely critical condition after slipping into a coma.

Police investigators are trying to determine if drugs or alcohol played a role in the fiery crash.

………

I once made the mistake of telling a bikemaker I didn’t see a market for ebikes, because I assumed everyone would want the exercise and health benefits of a standard bike.

Turns out I was wrong about that, too, since studies show ebikes offer the same health benefits as any other bike.

So this is a snapshot of just who is taking up ebikes.

You know, the market I somehow couldn’t picture.

………

Let’s take a few moments to consider what’s possible when you register your bike with Bike Index.

You can get a free, lifetime registration in just minutes.

So if anything happens to your bike, you’ll have all the information you need to add your bike to Bike Index’ nationwide database of stolen bikes. And increase your chances of getting it back, wherever its found.

………

Streets For All is hosting their latest virtual happy hour this evening.

………

Who needs an ebike bike when you can build your very own DIY jet-powered bicycle?

………

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

No bias here. A new San Francisco group demanding the reopening of JFK Drive through Golden Gate Park to cars has issued their full set of demands, including parking on every street, no parking-protected bike lanes, and no bike lanes replacing parking.

A road-raging Dayton, Ohio man faces charges for intentionally running down, then running over, a man riding a bicycle, before getting out with another man and looking at the victim; the attack was apparently in retaliation for the rider throwing a small flashlight at the driver’s car, after someone in the car threw a water bottle at the victim.

A Florida driver is accused of circling back and jumping a curb to intentionally run down a pair of bike riders, then getting out and shooting one of them in the leg

British police interviewed a man accused of “furiously” pushing a man against a wall and throwing his bicycle out into the street, for the crime of riding his bike on the sidewalk.

An Irish road and cyclocross racer is back to riding just two weeks after he suffered four broken ribs and two broken vertebrae, as well as a partially collapsed lung, when someone sabotaged a mountain bike trail with a rope strung across the path; Seán Nolan warns that its only a matter of time before someone gets killed.

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

A Nebraska man was busted after fleeing from police on his bike when the cops recognized his as having outstanding warrants; he was also carrying meth and drug paraphernalia in his backpack.

A Tulsa, Oklahoma man learns the hard way that if you’re going to stab a man and ride off on his bicycle, make sure it doesn’t have a flat tire first.

Police in Chicago are looking for a bike-riding man who has targeted elderly women in a string of strong-arm robberies, stealing their jewelry before riding off.

………

Local

Dozens of bicyclists and other activists turned out at City Hall on Monday to protest a new ordinance banning outdoor bike chop shops, fearing the law could be used to target low-income people and people of color, rather than cracking down on bike thefts.

Streetsblog reports Venice Blvd will be getting another 4.3 miles of parking protected bike lanes connecting to the .8-mile Mar Vista Great Street project, for a total of 5.1 miles of protected bike lanes.

The LA River Greenway is getting a new Canoga Park entry pavilion designed by acclaimed architect Frank Geary, even though the river is nothing more than an open air concrete culvert at that point. Geary has also proposed hiding lower sections of the concrete channel under elevated parks, rather than returning the channel to a more natural state.

Walk Bike Glendale offers action alerts on proposed makeovers of North Brand Blvd and La Crescenta Ave, as well as plans for a feeder ride to the Meet the Hollywoods CicLAvia on August 21st.

 

State 

Sen. Scott Wiener’s SB 922 passed the state Assembly with almost unanimous support; the bill expedited bike, pedestrian, light rail, and rapid bus projects by exempting them from the California Environmental Quality Act, aka CEQA. It now goes back to the Senate for a final vote before going to the governor’s desk for a signature.

Encinitas-based bikemaker Electra continues to stick close to its roots, keeping its focus on cruiser bikes on the eve of its 30th birthday.

San Diego’s newly revised Climate Action Plan doubles down on efforts to get people out of their cars, including a shift to more Class IV protected bike lanes.

Santa Barbara’s Parks and Recreation Commission approved the removal of 34 trees to build a bike path on the city’s Modoc Road, which will require moving the roadway 12 feet so the path won’t go through sensitive wildlife habitat near Arroyo Burro Creek; the project is less controversial than another one along Modoc Road in Santa Barbara County, which will require removing 40 to 61 trees.

Streetsblog calls on San Francisco officials to fix a street grate in Golden Gate Park that could grab a narrow bike tire and bring down the rider. And did. Call it Golden Gate Grate-gate. 

Oakland wants to use a $1 million state grant to buy 500 ebikes to open an ebike library for low-income neighborhoods.

After hundreds of bike-riding teens swarmed the lower deck of the San Francisco Bay Bridge Saturday afternoon, they’re accused of burglarizing businesses and throwing things at people in Oakland.

A man was sentenced to a well-deserved 17 years behind bars for trying to rape a woman on a Davis bike path.

 

National

Streetsblog offers advice on how to access federal funding from the new Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) program, offering a cool $1 billion a year for the next five years for “meaningful, community-led Vision Zero projects.”

Even with federal incentives of up to $7,500, electric cars remain outside the reach of many Americans. Yet the new climate bill fails to mention far more affordable bicycles, let alone ebikes.

The Verge says the ebike tax credit is only mostly dead, as supporters plot the next steps to revive it.

Add this one to your bike bucket list. Take a cog railway train to the summit of Colorado’s 14,115-foot Pikes Peak, then bike 13 miles and 5,000 feet back down.

A 49-year old Durango, Colorado fire fighter was killed when his bike was rear-ended by a driver; his death came just two weeks after a 60-year old member of the same department died of a heart condition while riding bikes with his son.

A 68-year old Sierra City, California man was killed when he was rear-ended by a semi driver and knocked into a ditch while riding in Kansas.

Great idea. While Houston is in the midst of a years-long commitment to build 1,800 miles of high-comfort bike lanes, the city is reserving 10% of the funding for smaller “strategic” projects suggested by members of the bicycling community.

Police arrested a 26-year old man for yelling and chucking rocks at people using a Madison, Wisconsin bike path.

A Detroit website says more pedestrians are getting killed as trucks and SUVs keep getting bigger, with some models now exceeding the size of a WWII tank.

The woman accused of killing two men participating in a Michigan Make-A-Wish fundraising ride while driving under the influence is due back in court for a prelim next week; the crash left nine kids without their fathers.

The bighearted employees of a Maine company pitched in to buy a new bicycle for a 19-year old coworker, after the bike he used to ride to work was stolen.

Boston Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale is one of us, after he suffered a broken wrist falling off his bike to end his season; a Texas website offers an incomplete list of other major league bike incidents, although they include motorcycles as well as bicycles.

New York saw a 33 percent jump in weekday bicycling trips during the deepest, darkest days of the pandemic in 2020. Meanwhile, the latest official figures for Los Angeles show a 22 percent increase — in 2019, before the pandemic and subsequent bike boom.

New Yorkers want more, and more secure, bike parking. Then again, doesn’t everyone?

DC has a new bicycle awareness specialty license plate, even if it does misspell “taxation.”

New Orleans police arrested a 16-year old boy, accusing him of stealing a bicycle from an off-duty cop in a French Quarter strong-arm robbery.

 

International

A Suffolk, England woman is credited with helping save a man’s life after he rode his bike into a river; now she’s raising funds to support the medical charity that helped his rehabilitation.

British police failed to arrest a single bike thief in 87% of neighborhoods with at least one bike theft. And usually a lot more.

A German company has introduced what they call the world’s smartest bike helmet, including a full face air bag, 360° surround safety system, LED lights and a breathable, 3D-knitted liner.

NPR says many Sri Lankans have switched to bicycles due to the country’s economic crisis.

The pandemic is fueling a sports bicycling boom in China, a country more noted for utilitarian and proletarian bikes; meanwhile, the country’s surviving bikeshare companies are raising their prices in an effort to finally turn a profit. Thanks to Steven Hallett for the link.

 

Competitive Cycling

Indianapolis Monthly takes readers to school, explaining what a crit is.

A new documentary captures Pittsburgh’s Frigid Bitch alleycat bike race.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you find driving stressful when you’re not going 186 mph. Try not to back your motorbike into a pit.

And this is who we share the road with.

https://twitter.com/ChadBlue83/status/1556435695635517440

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

LA considers Complete Streets makeover of Valley Blvd, US House hearing on traffic deaths, and Ballona Creek path closed

Los Angeles is taking the first tentative steps towards a Complete Streets makeover of Valley Blvd, from Mission Road to Soto Street

Proposals for the four-mile stretch of Valley Blvd include bus lanes and a possible sidewalk level, two-way cycle track, while sinking railroad tracks to reduce crossings and improve safety.

But don’t hold your breath.

Actual construction is at least five to ten years off. And what gets built will depend on a series of public meetings, which gives the usual NIMBYs a chance to derail everything.

Photo courtesy of the City of Los Angeles, via The Eastsider.

……….

About damn time.

The US House of Representatives Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee held a hearing yesterday to consider the country’s rising rate of traffic deaths, especially among pedestrians and bike riders.

Then again, it’s one thing to conduct a hearing. It’s another to actually do something about it.

Which hasn’t exactly been Congress’ strong suit in recent years.

………

A section of the Ballona Creek bike path between National Blvd and Duquesne Ave in Culver City will be closed through this month.

………

Sunset For All hosts another coffee walk to spread the word about plans for a more human-focused boulevard.

https://twitter.com/SunsetForAll/status/1534319644634497025

………

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

An Idaho man faces up to 15 years behind bars after accepting a plea bargain for driving through a public park trying to run down a boy riding a bicycle; fortunately, the kid was able to jump off before the man ran over his bike.

Police in the UK are looking for the passenger of a pickup who shouted out the window and squirted an “unknown liquid” in the face of pair of bicyclists as the truck passed them. Far from a harmless prank, something like that can startle the victim and cause a dangerous fail — regardless of whether the substance itself was actually harmful.

………

Local

A Long Beach bike rider is in stable condition after he suffered injuries to his upper body when he was struck by a hit-and-run driver in the California Heights neighborhood.

 

State 

Victorville will close a portion of Green Tree Blvd for three months as part of a street makeover, including adding bike lanes along the roadway to create a seven-mile bike loop.

Zebra sightings continue in Santa Barbara, including one that chased a bike rider on Sunday; locals suggest it could be a free-roaming domesticated animal who has gone on several previous walkabouts.

San Jose’s Mr. Roadshow says he’s surprised the Bike League rated California as the country’s fourth most bicycle-friendly state, even as bike and pedestrian deaths continue to rise. He should see how surprised the rest of us are.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a therapy bike belonging to an 11-year old Sacramento boy with cerebral palsy; fortunately, kindhearted community members have raised more than $3,000 to replace it.

 

National

Outdoor offers their favorite outdoor love stories shared by the magazine’s readers, including a California couple’s mountain biking meetup that sparked their relationship.

Consumer Reports warns against buying or using the Tony Hawk Silver Signature Series helmet after it failed a safety test; the manufacturer had offered the helmet as a replacement for the recalled Dimensions Bluetooth Speaker multipurpose helmet, which also failed the magazine’s safety tests.

Bicycling recommends their picks for the best saddle bags. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

Dallas is the latest major city to adopt a Vision Zero program, agreeing to halt traffic deaths by 2030. Let’s hope they show more commitment than Los Angeles and other cities have, where it’s failing for lack of effort and investment.

A Chicago public radio station considers what the city can do to improve safety for bicyclists, after three riders have died on city streets this year. Meanwhile, Los Angeles has suffered over twice as many deaths, and no one has even batted an eye. 

Prosecutors charged an Indianapolis man with murder for the fatal hit-and-run that killed his ex-girlfriend as she was riding her bike; she identified her killer by giving police his license number before she died.

A writer from Streetsblog says New York can have nice things, but only after they get rid of cars — like blocking vehicles from the iconic Brooklyn Bridge.

That’s more like it. DC is considering a plan to charge owners of large trucks and SUVs more to register their vehicles in an attempt to improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians, with an extra $175 for vehicles weighing between 3,500 and 6,000 pounds, and $500 for anything over that.

 

International

Digital Journal suggests smart helmets could be the future of bicycle safety.

British police are relying on bike cam and dashcam video to enforce traffic laws, after cutbacks in traffic cops. Unfortunately, that’s illegal in most, if not all, US states, where traffic infraction have to actually be witnessed by a cop.

A 49-year old father of three from the UK shares how bicycling helped him recover from a brain tumor, calling it as important to his recovery as his medications.

Your next custom-fitted Italian steel bike frame could come complete with gold-plated lugs and stays.

A 42-year old Dutch woman has been charged with attempted manslaughter for grabbing the arm of the country’s former legal protection minister as he rode his bike at a high rate of speed, causing him to fall heavily and break several ribs, as well as his pelvis and collarbone.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former world ‘cross champ Thalita de Jong is finally back in the women’s WorldTour, five years after a knee injury knocked the Belgian cyclist out of the sport’s top levels.

The Sportsman says seven-time Grand Tour winner Chris Froome is in the toughest fight of his career as he fights just to make the Israel–Premier Tech team for the Tour de France.

The coach of India’s international cycling team has been accused of sexual harassment and trying to force himself on one of the country’s top women’s cyclists.

The Spanish cycling community mourned the death of 87-year old Julio Jiménez, one of international cycling’s best climbers of the ’60s, after he was killed when the driver of the car he was in crashed into a wall.

 

Finally…

Nothing like a little 65 mph bike ride through the California desert. Your next bike could be the self-proclaimed Ferrari of ebikes, for the low, low price of just 18 grand.

And that feeling when jousting on bicycles with boat oars ends up pretty much the way you’d expect.

Jousting with oars on bicycles from WinStupidPrizes

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

US traffic deaths soar, LA Times picks Pynoos over O’Farrell, and Friedman fights for bike safety on Burbank bridge

If you thought our roads are getting more dangerous, you’re right.

According to figures from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 42,915 people were killed on American streets last year — the highest total since 2005, and an increase of 10.5 percent over 2020.

Bicycling fatalities rose five percent, to 985 — an average of five deaths every two days — while pedestrian deaths jumped 13 percent to 7,342.

Not surprisingly, nearly two-thirds of US traffic fatalities occurred in urban areas, where there are more people, and more cars.

Artwork by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the heads-up.

……….

In political news, Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer dropped out of the race for mayor, swinging his support to Karen Bass.

And the LA Times made a surprising endorsement of former Mike Biden staffer Karen Pynoos over incumbent Mitch O’Farrell in CD13 — without mentioning O’Farrell’s role in tanking the shovel-ready Temple Street lane reduction in the wake of the Playa del Rey fiasco.

………

California Assembly Transportation Chair Laura Friedman jumped into the road safety fight to push for steps to improve bike and pedestrian safety on the new Burbank Blvd Bridge.

………

Still more Bike to Work Week news.

Or bike anywhere, for that matter.

Tonight marks the annual Ride of Silence, with rides throughout California; a ride will be held in Los Angeles at 7 pm tonight, starting at 3554 W. First St .

Metro is celebrating tomorrow’s Bike to Work Day by offering free rides for everyone on all Metro Bus and Rail lines, as well as free half-hour Metro Bike rides.

Bike Metro is teaming with the LACBC to host a lunchtime ride through Chinatown on Thursday’s Bike to Work Day.

Culver City Bus is offering free rides for bike riders on tomorrow’s Bike to Work Day.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition and Day One are hosting a Handlebar Happy Hour at the Dog Haus tomorrow night.

And make plans for a Spoke and Art Ride this Saturday.

………

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

There’s a special place in hell for the bike thieves who rammed an 81-year old British man with their car, knocking him into a ditch and stealing his new mountain bike.

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

A 35-year old ex-con will stand trial for the unprovoked murder of a San Diego man in a Pacific Beach restroom, before the killer fled on a bicycle; Martin Alvarez, Jr. has entered a not guilty plea to the fatal stabbing.

………

Local

The proposed LA River Master Plan has been posted online, along with public comments about the plan.

A massive Puente Hills landfill could soon become the new Puente Hills Regional Park, including plans for a bike skills park.

 

State 

Plans for a two-way bikeway down the middle of Palo Alto’s California Street hit the skids, failing on a tie vote at the city council.

 

National

No surprise here. A new study from the Urban Institute shows that tax rebates are a better solution to soaring prices than cutting gas taxes, while policies that discourage driving — like high gas prices, for instance — would have the greatest longterm impact on inflation.

Advisory bike lanes, which give bike riders priority and force drivers to share the roadway, are coming to a pair of short Portland streets. Advisory streets have bike lanes on either side, with a single car lane shared by drivers traveling in both directions; drivers are expected to move into the bike lanes to pass one another, before returning to their lane. Let’s hope they have a better rollout than they did in San Diego

A crowdfunding account has raised over $91,000 for the family of a young Las Vegas father who was killed by a speeding driver while riding his bike on Sunday.

A Minneapolis man pulled himself out of depression and got his life on track with an apprenticeship at a nonprofit bike shop dedicated to providing mentorship and training for young people dealing with housing instability.

Miami bike riders demanded safety improvements to the city’s Rickenbacker Causeway following the death of a couple riding in the bridge’s green bike lane.

 

International

Cycling Weekly considers what makes a good beginner bicycle.

After bike riders complained about a 22 mph speed limit, organizers of the 20,000 person Ride London backed off and removed the speed cap.

Someone cut the locks off a semi-truck in the UK, and made off with 133 Merida bikes as the truck was stopped at a truck stop, while leaving 73 bikes behind.

The co-owner of the Israel Cycling Academy WorldTour cycling team has donated one million dollars to complete a bike trail in Elad.

A Kiwi driver was captured on video ramming a woman riding a bike directly in front of her car, but will only get a lousy $150 fine because she “wasn’t injured enough.” But at least the driver apologized and offered to fix her bike.

 

Competitive Cycling

History was made Tuesday when 22-year old Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay outsprinted Mathieu van der Poel to win stage 10 of the Giro, becoming the first Black African to win a Grand Tour stage.

Ayesha McGowan, the only Black rider on the women’s pro tour, called it a victory for all of us.

Even van der Poel showed his support for Girmay in defeat, with a thumbs up gesture as the African rider crossed the finish line.

https://twitter.com/nealrogers/status/1526757824440766465

 

Finally…

Your next e-cargo bike could be self-charging with solar panels. And Giro podium today, followed by a Prosecco cork in the eye.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Young siblings victims of traffic violence in Sylmar crash, LA traffic violence spikes, and modest bike gains in Beverly Hills

Sadly, traffic violence continues to climb on Los Angeles streets.

The latest news comes as a young brother and sister were run down as they shared a bike in LA’s Sylmar neighborhood.

At last report, the 12-year old boy and his 8-year old sister were both hospitalized in stable condition with serious injuries.

The driver remained at the scene, and as usual, was not charged.

There is something seriously wrong when children can’t ride safely on what should be a quiet neighborhood street.

Just another example of the unhealthy hegemony of cars in the City of Angels.

………

In news that shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone, traffic injuries and fatalities spiked on Los Angeles streets in the first two months of the year, after climbing last year.

The jump comes nearly seven years after Mayor Eric Garcetti sat at a massive desk plopped down in a Boyle Heights street to sign a proclamation declaring Vision Zero in Los Angeles.

And just three years from the date he promised to end LA traffic deaths once and for all.

Maybe someone should have warned him that it would require actually taking bold action and making the tough decisions to tame traffic and reduce motor vehicle use.

Oh wait, we did.

………

It’s been awhile since we’ve heard from Mark Elliot of Better Bike Beverly Hills, who almost single-handedly led a shockingly successful fight to transform the former Biking Black Hole into something far friendlier to people on two wheels. Although there’s still a long way to go. .

Here he offers an update on what he terms modest wins in the city.

Despite the evident disinterest among our City Council majority (3-2) for multimodal mobility, the city has nevertheless notched a couple of modest wins for safer streets in Beverly Hills.

New leadership at the Transportation Division marks a new era. Mobility planning in Beverly Hills effectively cleared two kidney stones with the retirements of Aaron Kunz and Susan Healey Keene last year. Subsequently the mobility function was moved to Public Works from Community Development. Each change represented a big step forward. Daren Grilley and Jessie Holzer now are in charge of the transportation division and each understands the importance of safe streets. They walk the walk too, so to speak, as they both ride.

New commissioners have revitalized the Traffic & Parking Commission. For too long this commission sat idly by as crash injuries increased year-after-year. Commissioners for too long didn’t even ask why traffic enforcement in Beverly Hills took a ten-year holiday. But starting a few years ago, new appointments to the commission changed the dynamic. Now we have a safety-minded commission and a new chair: Sharon Ignarro. She really walks the walk. But hold on, we are hardly out of the woods yet: one of our councilmembers seems intent on defanging this commission. We beat-back that effort last month.

Elliot also calls on the biking and walking communities to support bike-friendly Mayor Robert Wunderlich and Councilmember John Mirisch in their campaigns for re-election to the Beverly Hills City Council.

………

Hats off to the Laguna Woods bike rider who joined a couple of elderly men to confront a woman walking through the area wearing a Nazi armband, which is home to a number of Jewish retirees.

………

One of our most frequent contributors, Megan Lynch will be a panelist discussing bicycling and accessibility at next month’s CalBike Summit.

………

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

Before you try to intimidate a woman riding a bicycle by revving your engine and honking your horn during a close pass, maybe make sure she’s not a plainclothes cop, first.

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

A British bike rider was threatened with arrest for attempting to jump a closed rail crossing barrier with his bike before finally be turned away, while another greeted cops with a “vigorous hand gesture.”

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Local

Caltrans is looking for your input on the agency’s draft Active Transportation Plan for Los Angeles and Ventura counties by April 5th.

LA Times readers aren’t fans of Governor Newsom’s plan to give rich and poor drivers alike a $400 gas tax rebate, even if they drive an e-car, while screwing anyone who doesn’t own a car. Meanwhile, the plan is criticized for undermining the governors own climate goals. But what’s a little climate emergency when there’s an election to be won by handing out piles of cash to people who don’t need it?

 

State 

Carlsbad imposes a draconian crackdown on ebikes and e-scooters, banning them from “public sidewalks, drainage ditches, culverts, channels, athletic courts or gyms,” as well as requiring riders to walk their bikes within 50 feet of a pedestrian on any trail less than five-feet wide; the city blames bike riders for 70% of all bike collisions, which defies logic.

A San Jose bike rider was lucky to avoid becoming collateral damage in a collision between two drivers, in one of the closest close calls you’re likely to see.

The Bay Area web series Comedians on Bicycles marked their season finale with a slow-motion bicycle race and a donut-eating contest.

A Marin paper says it makes sense to earmark $2.5 million to build bike and pedestrian paths along the SMART commuter rail corridors.

A Chico man learns the hard way thy shall not steal thy neighbor’s bike.

 

National

Rolling Stone gets on the ebike bandwagon, telling readers to fight high gas prices by ditching their cars and getting an ebike.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole the wheel out from under Portland’s Unipiper unicycle-riding flame-throwing bagpiper.

Proving it can be done, Seattle is taking steps to remake a major state highway that cuts through the city, with a $50 million plan to revive the corridor dying from cut-through traffic, and make the seven lane roadway welcoming to people on riding bikes and on foot. Maybe Malibu can take note before LA’s killer highway claims another innocent victim.

An Arizona woman is suing Costco and Phantom bikes for an illegal design using the right brake to stop the front wheel on their ebikes, allegedly losing an eye and suffering other injuries when the brake setup caused her to go over her handlebars.

An Idaho cop says no, you don’t have to yield to bike riders in a crosswalk, but it beats the hell out of hitting them.

Nice way to bury the lede. A Hudson Valley newspaper reports a 69-year old man was charged with wearing earbuds while riding a bike, and failing to signal his turn. Neither of which would have likely come to the attention of the police if he hadn’t been hit by a driver, first.

The New York press is quick to paint bike riders as outrageous scofflaws endangering pedestrians, but it’s just as likely the rider will suffer serious injuries in any collision with someone on foot. The latest case in point is a Harlem ebike rider who was gravely injured when he struck someone crossing the street and flew over his handlebars.

In a major safety improvement, the new protected bike lane on New York’s Brooklyn Bridge has slowed motor vehicle traffic 28%, reducing average speeds just below 20 mph. Although chances are, the drivers using the bridge won’t see that as a win.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette demands an apology from the city police department for the fatal tasing of a Black man who took a bike for a test ride around the block without permission; the victim died after officers tased him multiple times in a matter of minutes.

The Washington Post talks with the Australia native who gained social media acclaim as the Bike Man who singlehandedly slowed a DC truckers convoy protest.

No bias here. Wackadoodle rightwing Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene told a crowd that ”Pete Buttigieg can take his electric vehicles and his bicycle, and he and his husband can stay out of our girls bathrooms. Yup.” Not that they were planning to take their electric cars and bicycles into one.

 

International

Brompton is recalling their new ebike foldies because the mudguard can get caught in the tire.

Travel and Leisure examines the intersection of bike tours and Michelin-starred food.

Treehugger says anecdotal evidence shows high gas prices are leading to booming ebike sales.

Canadian Cycling Magazine celebrates the Oscars with their picks for the best and worst bicycling movies. Although nothing matches the action of an open-handed Will Smith slap delivered to the face of a stunned Chris Rock.

London is facing a bikelash from Conservative councilmembers, who have taken steps to remove popup bike lanes and pedestrianized areas before they had a chance to change transportation behavior; the city’s transportation agency has responded by cutting funding to their districts.

British Olympic cycling hero Sir Chris Hoy says he’s experienced fewer close passes since the county’s new Highway Code went into effect. Although we saw the same thing in California when the three-foot passing law went into effect, but it didn’t last.

Dutch ebike maker Cowboy continues to bring in $81 million in new funding, despite record pandemic and supply chain-related losses.

Great idea. An Indian petrochemical company gave each of its 142 employees an identical new bicycle, and is encouraging them to bike to work at least once a week.

Abu Dhabi says ditch the passenger and wear a helmet if you’re riding a bike, ebike or e-scooter in an emirates bike lane.

 

Competitive Cycling

We may have glimpsed the future of pro cycling, as 21-year old Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay just missed the podium with a fifth place finish in the E3 Saxo Bank Classic, in his first full year on the pro tour — then followed it up with first place in Sunday’s Gent-Wevelgem, a significant breakthrough for Black African riders. Meanwhile, Wout van Aert came in first in the E3.

https://twitter.com/eurosport/status/1508113176864468992

It says something when the great Marianne Vos says she just wasn’t fast enough to catch 24-year old Italian Elisa Balsamo in the women’s Gent-Wevelgem.

Twenty-three-year old Sergio Higuita captured the Volta a Catalunya after climbing into the lead on Saturday, fending off multiple attacks on Sunday’s final stage.

British pro Lizzy Banks is finally back in the peloton, after losing most of last season to a traumatic brain injury and a major bout with Covid.

Great news from Colombia, where former Tour de France and defending Giro winner Egan Bernal is back on a bike, just two months after a nearly fatal training crash when he slammed into the back of a poorly parked bus.

Kazakhstan pro Alexey Lutsenko will be sidelined for the foreseeable future after breaking his shoulder and collar bone while training in Tenerife.

We’re less than one week away from the world’s biggest little bike race, as men’s and women’s teams were announced for Indiana University’s famed Little 500, made famous in Breaking Away.

 

Finally…

Your next e-cargo bike could fold and glow in the dark. It doesn’t pay to play doctor if you ain’t one.

And don’t ride naked through the woods sporting wood of your own.

………

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

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

US bicycling deaths up over 9% in 2020, Feds commit to Complete Streets, and remembering a fallen bike rider

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released the final traffic fatality stats for 2020.

And the news was as bad as we expected.

A whopping 38,824 people were killed on American roads, the worst since 2007, and a nearly 7% jump over 2019.

That also represents a 21% increase over the previous year in deaths per vehicle miles traveled (VMT). So it’s not just due to more people on the roads; in fact, 2020 was marked by a dramatic decrease in driving due to the pandemic.

The one bit of good news is that traffic injuries dropped 17% in 2020, while crashes declined 22%.

So we’re talking fewer, but far more deadly, crashes, with pedestrians and bicyclists accounting for one in five of those killed.

Like the overall trends, it was a mixed bag for bike riders, with 938 people killed while riding their bikes in 2020, a 9.2% increase over the year before, while injuries dropped 21%, to 10,171.

Meanwhile, we’re off to a horrible start to this year, with 22 people killed riding their bikes in Southern California in just the first two months of 2022 — a rate of one person killed less than every three days.

Which has got to stop.

Now.

………

Meanwhile, the Federal Highway Administration submitted their first report to Congress detailing their “commitment to advance widespread implementation” of Complete Streets, as required by last year’s infrastructure bill.

Which they define like this.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law defines Complete Streets standards or policies as those which “ensure the safe and adequate accommodation of all users of the transportation system, including pedestrians, bicyclists, public transportation users, children, older individuals, individuals with disabilities, motorists, and freight vehicles.”

The law requires that a relatively paltry 2.5% of planning funding has to go towards Complete Streets, or bicycling, walking or transit projects.

Then again, that’s 2.5% more than was required before.

Although their idea of a Complete Street may leave something to be desired.

The infrastructure bill also contains a provision that will prevent states from setting traffic safety goals that allow an increase in traffic deaths each year.

And they’ll have to take steps to protect the safety of bike riders and pedestrians in order to keep receiving federal funds.

………

Nice piece from a longtime reporter with the Daily Bulletin, who remembers former five-term Upland Councilmember Tom Thomas, who died Saturday after he was struck by a motorcyclist while riding his bike in Montclair.

David Allen recalls him as a friend, as well as a local leader, along with his three-decade love of bicycling. He talks about Thomas as being too nice for today’s rough-and-tumble civic politics.

A few paragraphs stand out, though. Like this from when Thomas was first elected to the city council in 1990.

Riding defensively is his approach and expecting the worst his philosophy when biking on city streets. Clueless motorists frequently make turns across the path of bike riders or nearly knock them over when zooming by.

Then there’s this, as Allen spoke with Thomas’ wife after his death.

I ask her about Tom’s bike riding. He’d head out Tuesday, Thursday and either Saturday or Sunday for 20 to 35 miles at a time. The 6-foot-1 senior was, enviably, at his college weight of 210. And he took every precaution on the road.

“This man was the safest cyclist you could have,” Ann says. “He wore the neon yellow windbreaker. If it was even dusk, he would turn on his lights, front and back. He always wore a helmet. He would curse people who didn’t wear one. He broke three helmets over the years” — starting with that 1990 accident.

Sadly, it wasn’t enough to keep him safe.

Another reminder that you can do everything right. Yet your safety still depends on those we share the road with.

We have no choice but to trust them with our lives, in the most literal sense.

Even if they don’t deserve it.

………

REI is now offering members a 20% discount on bike repairs, as well as free flat fixing. Which should more than pay for your lifetime membership fee the first time you use it.

………

Now this is a bike ad.

https://twitter.com/CoolBikeArt1/status/1499111168232800265

………

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

A Bowling Green, Kentucky bike rider was threatened by a pair of men in separate pickups, after the first driver bumped his bike, and the second stopped behind him and threw his bike off the roadway.

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

A man riding on a Placer County, CA bike path struck a woman with his bike, apologized, then pulled a knife and robbed her as he helped her up.

Houston, Texas police are looking for an armed robber who rode up to couple as they were getting into their car outside a shopping mall, pointed a gun at them and demanded their wallets and cellphone.

………

Local

CD2 Councilmember Paul Krekorian wisely cancelled the ill-advised proposal to widen Burbank Blvd in North Hollywood, opting to widen sidewalks and improve safety for pedestrians instead.

A writer for City Watch questions whether CD5 Councilmember Paul Koretz has the integrity to serve as city controller, after violating city ethics rules by attending a fundraiser at the home of a DWP commissioner, while suggesting Koretz should know better after 55 long years in politics.

USC’s Annenberg Media discusses the Healthy Streets LA ballot proposal, which would require Los Angeles to build out the mobility plan when streets get repaved.

A new e-scooter company has taken root in Santa Monica, with Chicago-based micromobility company Veo expecting to hire 300 people to staff its West Coast HQ.

 

State 

Costa Mesa will rename a segment of the 55 Freeway for fire captain and fallen bike rider Mike Kreza, who was killed by a stoned driver while riding in Mission Viejo in 2018; Stephen Taylor Scarpa was sentenced to 15 to life after his conviction for killing Kreza last year.

Bikemaker Yuba Bicycles used their own cargo bikes to move their headquarters from San Juan Capistrano to new offices in Lake Forest.

The San Diego Bike Coalition highlights the city’s new @SDCrashBot to track collisions involving bike riders and pedestrians, based on Streets For All’s Vision Zero Alerts, which has provided a similar service for the LA area for a little over a year. Thanks to Phillip Young for the link.

Oakland’s 14th Street is due to get a Complete Streets makeover, with a 4-to-2 lane reduction, shortened crosswalks and curb-protected bike lanes on both sides.

No bias here. After an SUV slammed into an Anderson, California preschool, sending 14 little kids to the hospital, the LA Times doesn’t even mention that it had a driver until story’s penultimate paragraph. But at least they didn’t call it an accident.

 

National

If you’ve always dreamed of working in the glamorous field of bicycle journalism, Bikerumor is looking for freelance writers for remote work.

Houston will install a popup bike lane this Sunday to allow fans to ride safely to the rodeo.

An autistic Michigan man spreads joy through his community by riding his bike while wearing extravagant holiday-themed suits, showing how special people with autism can be.

A new documentary from a Boston bike advocate highlights several women who enjoy riding their bikes after dark.

 

International

The Guardian profiles Twitter user @cybergibbons, who polices the social media site to confront anti-bike trolls. I’ve been known to do the same thing, but with about 30,000 fewer followers. Thanks to Jon for the heads-up.

Road.cc offers tips on how to keep your bike from being a pain in the butt. Or anywhere else.

A Toronto bicyclist films himself unexpectedly, and painfully, wiping out on the city’s streetcar tracks.

Welsh math teacher during the week, record-setting cyclist on weekends.

The truck driver who killed an English woman as she rode her bike through a deadly intersection faces charges of driving while stoned and without a license; she was the eighth bike rider killed there in recent years.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a former Oxfordshire mayor walked with a suspended sentence for killing a 75-year old man riding a bicycle.

A new study from London’s Hackney neighborhood shows the British equivalent of Slow Streets encouraged 30% of residents to drive less, and ride their bikes more.

Two additional men have been charged in the violent home-invasion robbery of pro cyclist Mark Cavendish; a third man is already awaiting trial.

Irish academics say a focus on driver safety has made roads less safe for bike riders and pedestrians, and driven human interactions off the streets.

 

Competitive Cycling

Sad news from Australia, where three-time world champ Alex Woods died from cancer at just 55-years old; he also won championships as a junior, as well as winning gold, silver and bronze Olympic medals.

More sad news, as Ukrainian national cycling coach Alexander Kulyk was killed in a Russian attack while trying to help people evacuate from Kyiv; his son, former pro cyclist Andriy Kulyk demands that UCI ban Russian and Belarusian cyclists.

Russian cyclist Aleksandr Vlasov says he feels sorry for everyone who is suffering because of his country’s invasion of Ukraine, and says he just wants peace like most Russians.

Russian ex-cycling team boss Oleg Tinkov, the former owner of the Tinkoff-Saxo team, also came out against the war, calling it “unthinkable and unacceptable.”

VeloNews looks forward to Saturday’s Paris-Nice race, saying the eight-stage race has the strongest field so far this season. Meanwhile, the magazine asks if anyone can beat Tadej Pogačar in the one-day Strade Bianche, which also runs tomorrow.

A 21-year old British trans woman says she just wants to be competitive again, after previously setting national records as a junior male; Emily Bridges will compete as a woman for the first time this year, after lowering her testosterone levels since publicly transitioning in 2020.

How to cut corners by cutting corners to cheat in bike racing.

 

Finally…

That feeling when winning a time trial scores you a box of sex toys. Your next bike could be all wheels and chain, with no frame.

And that feeling when your toddler needs a $1,200 titanium balance bike.

………

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

Candidate list for June primary, Times’ Abcarian says Vision Zero “impossible,” and PCH claims another victim

Pick your ponies and place your bets.

The Los Angeles City Clerk has posted the latest list of candidates filing for the city’s June primary election.

Like most California elections, not everyone is a serious candidate. But there are some genuine choices hidden among the clowns and wannabes.

………

No, Vision Zero is not “impossible.”

LA Times columnist Robin Abcarian writes that eliminating traffic deaths is a worthy, but impossible, goal.

The goal is worthy, but why go out on a limb with a big, bold promise that is so obviously doomed to fail?

In Australia, at least, they call the effort “Toward Zero,” which seems more realistic…

As long as there is traffic, there will be traffic tragedy, especially in a car-centric city like ours, where you cannot drive an inch without seeing distracted drivers holding phones. How many times have you been stuck behind a car at a red light that doesn’t move when the light turns green because the driver in front is poking at a screen? At least while they aren’t moving, they aren’t killing anyone.

The obvious problem with that attitude is the question of just how many deaths are acceptable as the cost of just getting from here to there.

Graphic by tomexploresla

And if that number is anything other than zero, which of your loved ones are you willing to sacrifice to the motor vehicle gods?

Which makes it clear that one is the only acceptable answer.

Abcarian’s right that we may not get there today. But it’s up to all of us to do everything we can to make sure we get there tomorrow.

To her credit, she does identify one of the biggest problems with Vision Zero, with each of the city’s 15 councilmembers free to implement their own vision of how to end traffic deaths, or the lack thereof.

As well as the lack of alignment between the city and county, with Los Angeles aiming for 2025 — just three years from now — while the county aims to end traffic deaths a decade later.

Never mind the other 87 cities that call LA County home.

But the solution to that is to coordinate, not forget it. Then give the city and county transportation agencies the power to override individual councilmembers and supervisors to do what needs to be done to save lives.

Which also serves to shield our elected officials from blame by angry drivers, which is what some of them really care about, anyway.

And while we’re at it, someone please tell Ms. Abcarian the difference between a crash and an accident.

………

Southern California’s serial killer highway has claimed yet another victim.

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Pass the word, teens can grab a quick Benjamin from Walk ‘n Rollers for customizing a bicycle.

………

Remember, you always need a truck or SUV to go to the hardware store.

………

Sometimes it’s not who we share the road with, but what.

https://twitter.com/WarrenJWells/status/1491487543455465472

………

Here’s that great East Side Riders video we weren’t able to embed yesterday.

………

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

Someone in newly bike friendly San Diego clearly doesn’t get it, ruling that no action is necessary for a traffic signal clearly designed to thin the herd by encouraging drivers to turn left through a bike lane while bike riders still have the green. Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

There’s a special place in hell for the couple who flipped off a bike-riding Florida boy as they passed him in their car, then whipped a U-turn and threatened him with a gun when he responded in kind, before proceeding to pistol whip and slap him repeatedly; they were arrested after the boy managed to record video of the couple, along with their car and license plate.

A 67-year old Scottish man was left shaken after a construction worker pelted him with cement when he stopped his bike to ask if they had a permit to block an Edinburgh bike lane with a cement mixer.

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

A thirsty armed robber helped himself to cash and a canned drink from a Houston convenience store before making his getaway on a baby blue bike.

………

Local

Streetsblog’s Sahra Sulaiman takes a hard look at mayoral candidate and current Councilmember Joe Buscaino’s motion to crack down on bike chop shops, which could also catch legitimate bike repair in its wide net. Including if you decide to fix your own bicycle outside on a sunny day, if it’s too broadly written.

Meanwhile, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton checks out the new bike lanes on Yosemite Drive in Eagle Rock.

This is who we share the road with. A Manhattan Beach man claims a driver ran him over in a grocery store parking lot, then backed up and ran over him again, in a dispute over face masks that began inside.

Camilla Cabella is one of us, taking a bikeshare ride through the streets of LA with a “mysterious” friend. Oh, and she likes ice cream, too.

Rihanna showed her generosity Sunday, stopping by the West Los Angeles VA Campus with practical, needed gifts for homeless vets, including bike locks.

 

State

The annual Tour de Palm Springs returns to the Coachella Valle this weekend, with safety measures and law enforcement in place to hopefully keep participants safe, which hasn’t always been the case.

A 55-year old Navy vet is suing Caltrans, Bakersfield and Kern County after he was injured riding his bike into an open manhole on a Bakersfield sidewalk, which was left unmarked by orange cones or other warning devices.

The US Forest Service settled a lawsuit by agreeing to allow ebikes on non-motorized trails in the Tahoe National Forest.

 

National

Yes, please. A quartet of Democratic congressmen urged the president to request full funding for the new Active Transportation Infrastructure Investment Program in the next budget, which would provide $200 million a year for five years for biking and walking projects.

US ebike sales are on their way to one million units a year in the US, and one billion worldwide.

A new lawsuit accuses Peloton of bullying competitors and entering into sham agreements to secure its market position.

In a case of real life imitating art, actor Bob Odenkirk revealed his near-fatal heart attack came as he was riding an exercise bike on the set of Better Call Saul, which may or may not have been the same make that killed Mr. Big in HBO’s Sex and the City reboot, and nearly killed Mike “Wags” Wagner on Billions.

Talk about Viking biking. Try riding an ice bike across Wisconsin’s frozen Lake Winnebago in 13° weather.

Frightening story from New York, where a man called the NYPD to report a parked truck illegally blocking a bus stop, and immediately started getting death threats from the truck’s owner — even though his call should have been confidential.

 

International

Treehugger recommends their picks for the best bike cargo bags.

Towing your kids in a bike trailer may not be good for their lungs, as a new British study shows the lower position exposes them to more pollution that someone on a bike seat.

No bias here. And no surprise, either, as a new study from the UK shows that drivers and bike riders are treated differently by the press following a crash.

British bicyclists rode to protest a “discriminatory” daytime ban from the Bedford town center, which resulted in 3,200 fines for the equivalent of $107 — including one issued to a man on the second week of his around-the-world bike tour.

Now bike thieves aren’t even waiting until the bikes are assembled. Thieves hijacked 10,000 Shimano ebike parts by gassing the driver at a German service station.

Pakistan’s Associated Press captures a photo of an old man selling bundles of traditional handmade brooms from his bicycle.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai is one of us, riding with a group to check out a new beachfront bike path. And yes, I included that one just so I could use his full title.

 

Competitive Cycling

Black cycling legend Major Taylor’s 119-year old wood-rimmed Peugeot bike is returning for an exhibit at the Indiana State Museum in his Indianapolis home town.

Tadej Pogačar is back on his bike after testing positive for Covid.

We Love Cycling looks at inter-generational cycling dynasties.

In a scene straight out of Breaking Away, a local Colombian kid falls in and holds his own alongside Rigoberto Urán and Tom Dumoulin on a training ride. Except they don’t put a tire pump through his spokes.

 

Finally…

When you’re carrying meth on your bike with several outstanding felony warrants, maybe try not to make your escape through a snow-covered field.

And enough said.

https://twitter.com/schmangee/status/1491506749794361345

………

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

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