Tag Archives: miscellaneous ramblings

We have an election today, and the Feed

Today is Primary day here in TX and I am facing a conundrum. My state senator is facing a strong challenge from a Tea Party loon and he’s running unopposed in the general election. BUUUT there is a stealth Tea Party challenger for the Democratic race for my US senator. And many of the local races will be decided during the primaries of both parties. So do I vote to keep a relatively sane state senator still in office, or do I hope that most of the voters in the primary are sane and keep the crazy out of the race to be my national representative? Either way I’m likely to be represented by someone whose views range from mostly opposed to totally opposed to my beliefs.

Up first is a Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot, Interrogative moment from the next county over from the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell. Bicycle rider killed on Interstate 20 in Arlington Yeah, that area is terrible for anyone not driving a car and a barrier to even people in cars. The Street View of the scene shows an underpass about a quarter of a mile away, and there is another crossing about a half mile in the other direction but nothing that could be considered to be “bike friendly” in either direction. Still those are better than trying to cross on a bike and are within riding distance, and there is nothing for the rider to have been crossing from or to in the area, leading to the WTF? moment of trying to decipher this wreck There is even a bridge available on the frontage road to cross the body of water immediately to the west of the wreck location, so it’s not like he was riding on the shoulder to get over the stream. And in order to figure out how to avoid this wreck I first have to figure out why it happened. At this point the best thing I can say is not to ride on Interstate highways that don’t have bike provision, and get the infrastructure right (there is currently ZERO bike infrastructure in car-sick Arlington) to prevent.

A completely innocent cyclist is hit from behind by a drunk driver driving a stolen car in CA. Update: Chula Vista bike rider killed by drunk driver in stolen car No way for a cyclist to avoid this one, and infrastructure might but not positively would prevent a similar wreck. As all of the driver’s actions in this wreck are already felonies I don’t see changing the legal infrastructure as any help either.

A UK wreck story with a twist. Cyclist (94) died after being hit by car – 100 yards from where brother was fatally injured 59 years ago Blind driver kills and gets a gentle caress on the wrist, “120 hours’ unpaid work, was banned from driving for a year and was ordered to pay £250 costs and a Government-imposed £60 surcharge,” what else is new in the UK?

It was a really bad weekend in Oz. Five killed, pedestrians injured in horror three days on SA roads The was the one guy hitting a group of five pedestrians walking on the sidewalk in a residential area, people driving cars and motorcycles into stationary objects on the sides of roads, and one guy hit by a truck while riding a bicycle. The damages to the truck are clear indicators of a sideswipe wreck as there was blood on the side of the truck and a broken mirror on the passenger side. The description of the site leads me to believe that Oz’s rules of the road may have contributed to the wreck by forcing the cyclist to the side of the road but the driver holds most of the blame in this wreck. Infrastructure to prevent a similar wreck. More Four fatalities on SA roads due to speed

Really bad Infrastructure! news from Jolly Olde. Figures reveal Hackney fares worst in London for serious cyclist casualties as Boris promises Old Street roundabout re-design Yep, making streets that are suited only for motor vehicles actually makes them suited for nothing if there are any other roads users present. People get killed in large part due to the bad infrastructure combined with the bad driving. Fix the infrastructure and re-test all the drivers to weed out the ones that eventually kill or injure other road users. Make any tickets result in re-testing for bad driving skills and attitudes, and shred the licenses of those not qualified by skill or attitude. Make it permanent for bad attitudes and require additional training and testing for those with poor skills. Combine that with infrastructure suited for the purpose and the KSI rate will plummet.

An e-assist that’s built into a cargo bike. English Cycles: Designing & Building a Custom Electric Cargo Bike w/ Bosch, Gates, NuVinci

Last link is to another e-assist drive. Drive Motor 5.0 This motor is also intended to be built into the bike from the start rather than being an add-on for the consumer.

And those are all the links I have today about bicycles. I shared the other links on Facebook.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Stocking up while we can on Mule Day, and the Feed

I just got back from the grocery run, and as we had the son and his car we left the cargo bike in the garage and grabbed the coupons to stock up on certain things. One thing I stocked up on was a screaming deal on Gatorade quarts that was lower than the store brand sports drink with the coupon. Another thing was a screaming deal on tortilla chips so I got a couple pounds of those, too. Add produce deals that we took advantage of to the extent that we could consume the produce faster than it would spoil. Basically we had the back of my son’s car packed with food items and the pantry and freezer are likewise packed now that we got all the stuff home and put away. About the only thing we didn’t stock up on was Ramen. I still get that mostly when we do a FSM service at church and hand out packages of the dime a piece cheapy stuff. That quarter a package stuff is just sooo extravagant for our tastes. :P

Again today we had very few actual wrecks in the Feed and lots of infrastructure and human interest stuff. After years of reading about dismembered bodies and worse, I kinda like infrastructure that doesn’t get people killed every day. So, let’s get to it.

The only real wreck to report is from South Africa. Cyclist killed in Carletonville Not much there only a description of a SWCC wreck with only half an intersection given.

A trucking company trying to derail a cyclist’s injury suit gets slapped down for failing to act in a timely manner. Suit by gravely injured cyclist against trucking co. remanded to Phila. Common Pleas Court Classic delaying tactic is to move the jurisdiction of a lawsuit at the last moment, only they went a little beyond the last moment on this one.

A lawsuit in Jolly Olde over a killer (almost) pothole. Injured cyclist, 72, to take legal action against Devon County Council after hitting pothole on Exeter road Yep in the UK the government is responsible for maintaining the roads, to the point that if they fail you can sue for damages.

This is kinda crazy and spooky from NYC. 2013′s Cycling Injuries In NYC, Mapped I generally don’t get the injury reports from NYC because there are so many of them, as shown by this map of just last year’s injury wrecks. There are thousands of them, approximately 4000 in fact. This is the corresponding fatality map.

One of the biggest problems with bike lanes in NYC is people using them as parking. Cops Cracking Down On Double Parked Drivers On UWS This helps.

More on Jolly Olde and their bike infrastructure problems. London Will Spend $500 Million To Make Cycling Safer The little I have seen of the proposed “infrastructure” I would describe as a band-aid on a sucking chest wound. Still prioritizing motor vehicle traffic over bicycle safety, only not as bad as before. Which is hardly what could be considered a ringing endorsement.

On the other hand, bike infrastructure I would literally kill for is dumped as no longer suitable for the purpose in the land where they do these things right, and make them more right later when they know more. This Awesome Protected Bikeway Isn’t Good Enough for the Dutch Yeah, that makes the local “bicycle highway” look like a bad joke.

Speaking of infrastructure, a cheap and easy way to separate bike tracks from motor vehicle traffic while allowing crossing for emergency purposes. Recycled plastic doodads make instant divided bike lanes

Legal infrastructure changes in CA. Legislation: Vulnerable user law for California We passed a near-identical bill in TX, only to see it get vetoed by Gov. Goodhair….

Still in CA. Morning headlines: Another day, another three Times bike opinion pieces — and this time, they get it right

Poking fun at helmet Nazis in the Anglophone countries. When in Rome, or, “Darling! Avert Your Eyes!” The school run at a Dutch middle school causes some people apoplexy, because all those heads arriving via bicycles and not a helmet in sight.

New e-assist bikes are hitting the market. Optibike Launches New E-bike Models

And a place where e-assist bikes will be displayed. Interbike and OR to launch e-bike and outdoor tech media event Compare different models of e-assist on the same course under the same weather? Brilliant! (I’ll have that Guinness now).

Last link, for when you can’t stand to not use something bicycle-related to eat with. Bicycle pizza cutter lets you bring your love of bikes to the table

And that was what got my interest today, with a minimum of dead bodies.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Ever try to get enthusiastic about a dry hole, and the Feed

OK I opened the Feed folder and there was maybe 2 usable links in there, and I opened one and it had nothing to do with bicycles at all (only a little about motorcycles) and the other one was so ludicrous it just inspired hair pulling rather than anything useful. Even my other sources were not useful today because that one link kept coming up over and over. I think you’ll figure out which one that is.

Up first from OR a right hook wreck slowly winds its way to a final conclusion in the “justice” system. Jury decision expected today in Kathryn Rickson wrongful death lawsuit I read so many of these I forget which one this is, so I don’t remember if this was the right hook by a truck that passed well to the left and cut back suddenly, the right hook where the truck slowed down and moved to the left but didn’t start signalling the turn until the cyclist was already past the back of the trailer, the right hook where the truck stopped and signaled but couldn’t see out the right side because the cab was slightly turned to the right pointing the mirrors at the side of the trailer, or the right hook where the truck was already turning and the cyclist passed on the right because they couldn’t see the turn signals for all the dirt on them. More Trucking co. settles in cyclist wrongful death lawsuit

First link from BikingInLA today is mostly politics. Your morning links: Neighborhood Council elections, and somewhat questionable bike editorials And also stuff about the local LA media being unable to see things from outside a car or other motor vehicle.

Good advice for finding a lawyer, after a motor vehicle finds you… The Bike Accident Lawyer You Choose Can Make Or Break Your Case

And I think I saw this wreck earlier or a very similar one. LA rider killed in solo fall earlier this month; 5th cycling fatality in Los Angeles already this year I may be paranoid but I always say unless someone sees the cyclist wreck without assistance assume a motor vehicle was involved. By far the most dangerous thing on the roads is the motor vehicle.

One of the few actual wrecks in today’s links is this one from Sweden. Cops finger wild boar in cyclist’s mystery death And actually the blame should be on the man’s dog that dragged him down a mountainside when the dog detected a boar nearby and took off in pursuit while tied to the bicycle’s handlebars.

A folding e-scooter based on bike parts that might be a future part of transportation. URB-E: The world’s most compact e-vehicle. I don’t see it as a short-term possibility, but with a little changing of local regulations in certain areas(>cough<NYC>cough<) I think it might be a long-term solution to bad land use planning and poor mass transit.

Is the future of bicycle infrastructure literally over our heads? Are elevated bicycle highways the future of transportation?

Planning agencies are starting to learn that using peak growth figures from more than 20 years ago to plan for future growth is kinda stupid. As Driving Continues to Stagnate, Some States Finally Start to Adjust Now if we could get NCTCOG on the same page instead of lost in the ’70s…

Some places (not in the US) are planning for cargo bikes much like US cities planned for SUVs. Cargo Bike Parking Design – The Copenhagenize Bar by Cyclehoop

Last link is from PA and is about teaching women the basics of bike maintenance and repair so they don’t get stuck someplace bad. Pink Mechanic

And those were all the links that gave me fits and had some relation to bicycles, no matter how loosely.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Another Mule Day, and the Feed

Well I still haven’t gotten the hang of riding the new bike, so still getting the ride from the son from the store with the groceries today. The new bike steers oddly, to be mild about it. Turning left is limited by the tire hitting the tie rod connecting the remote steering to the fork, turning right is limited by the tie rod and steering arm on the fork approaching a straight line and not having any lever arm, but this is at a much higher steering angle than the left turn. I’m still constantly dabbing when trying to make a turn in less than the full width of the street, and that ain’t good. This is not a crank forward bike and in order to be able to reach the ground to dab without grounding the box I have to ride with the seat too low for my knees. This is what they call “adaption” to the bike, but I don’t know if I can do it at my age. I have been riding recumbents and crank forward bikes since I got back on a bike after the wreck, except for a few times to test a repair job and that one time to just see if I still could right after the wreck, and I have gotten used to putting my feet forward from the seat to find pedals.

Up first in this infrastructure-heavy post is another drunk hitting another cyclist from behind in a bike lane. Another drunken OC driver, another fatal hit-and-run; arraignment tomorrow in death of Pasadena cyclist As much as I hate drunk drivers, there is something else wrong here as well. Look at the speed limit of the street where this happened, and see the narrow bike lane adjacent to the street. Also witness the curb on the outside of the bike lane. This “design” would get the designer tossed in jail if not an insane asylum in the Netherlands, but in the US this is considered “good” bicycle infrastructure, even when it puts cyclists at risk from drunk or distracted drivers. The death rate for cyclists and pedestrians hit at this speed is roughly 85%.

From the former most deadliest and new #2 killer of cyclists we get a hit-from-behind wreck. Driver, bicyclist both cited after North Naples crash Another hit-from-behind in the bike lane by a person who legally should not have been driving. The cyclist’s lack of rear lighting contributed as did the lack of physical segregation from motor vehicle traffic by the infrastructure. Another bike lane painted on the wrong side of the curb on a 45 MPH speed limit highway.

A cyclist in far West Canuckistan is left crossed. Cyclist injured in vehicle-bike collision on Quadra Intersection wreck, protocols to avoid, get the infrastructure RIGHT to prevent.

A UK wreck with slightly more information than usual. Family loses a loving father This appears to have been a hit-from-behind wreck partially caused by bad infrastructure design. I suggest not riding in the UK to avoid. If that is impossible because you live there then the normal hit-from-behind protocols modified to fit riding on the wrong side of the road.

Another link to that $DEITY-awful sentence for running a cyclist over from behind and not budging an inch from his lane. Argos lorry driver who killed Wearside cyclist walks free

Not even idyllic Enn Zed is immune from the dreaded hit-and-run zombie. Cyclist killed in hit-and-run Near as I can tell this is another hit-from-behind wreck, protocols to avoid and infrastructure to prevent. Heavy emphasis on the part LEO has to play in the infrastructure portion of this fix.

Infrastructure! news from SC. Ashley River bridge biking path hits skid “Oh, heavens we could never give up a single lane of pavement from our holy death machines!” “We can’t ride bicycles we’re ‘Mericans. And too fat.”

Portland sends a missive in the infrastructure debate. Portland designer/planner unveils ‘protected intersections for bicyclists’ This design is actually a couple of generations behind the current standards in the Netherlands. That makes it 30 years ahead of anything in the US. :P

And West Canuckistan sees a problem that killed a cyclist and tries to fix it. Stanley Park causeway bike lane survey underway This was the area where a cyclist was thought to have been pushed off the shared path in front of a bus last year.

UK infrastructure is death-driven. Death of cyclist sparks calls to make ‘lethal’ Watlington Road near Garsington safer

And those were all the links that gave me fits about bicycles today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

My links are already moving towards my new focus, and the Feed

I’m slurping down ramen noodles as I type this because we are observing the full moon early tonight at my church. I need to eat something but dinner will not be ready before I have to leave to help with the services tonight. Also I will be off-air again tomorrow because of the RPG session coming up.

Save the date. Bride Plans to Marry Her Bicycle Umm didn’t Pat Robertson say this would happen if we legalized gay marriage? :P This is my contribution to Valentine’s Day, so deal with it!

One of the harshest sentences I have seen handed down in TX for hitting a cyclist. Landscaper sentenced to 4 years for cyclist hit and run I’m pretty sure that had the driver not been an illegal alien running an illegal business and driving without a license or insurance the sentence would not be anywhere near as harsh.

A CA cyclist gets SWSS’ed Cyclist Seriously Injured On Pershing Drive The cyclist was proceeding in the bike lane that crossed the on-ramp to a major freeway, hence the narrative. I don’t know how this could be avoided with the built environment unless they make cars crossing the bike lane liable for hitting cyclists in the bike lane. Getting the infrastructure right would have prevented the wreck.

A jogger in the UK runs into a cyclist and gets pretty banged up, but nobody knows what happened to the cyclist other than he “fell down”. Woman, 74, left battered and bruised after cyclist collision

A really bad wreck in Jolly Olde. Two cyclists killed after being hit by BMW convertible which was ‘fleeing from police’ in flooded village and Purley-on-Thames: Two cyclists killed by BMW after “police chase” in flood-hit village also Two cyclists killed by car in ‘police pursuit’ and this follow-up Purley crash victim named as Tilehurst man John Morland Pretty obvious what caused this one, that there was nothing the cyclists could have done to avoid a speeding car going towards them upside-down, and that nothing short of a tall and sturdy concrete wall could have prevented this from happening.

A UK driver admits responsibility in a deadly wreck. Guilty plea from Folkingham drink-driver facing jail after killing cyclist Once again nothing the cyclist could have done to avoid the wreck, by the time they get to this point in a trial and the river changes their plea to “guilty” it has been proven that the cyclist was a sitting duck for the driver.

The first UK cycling victim of the war by cars is identified. First cyclist to die on London’s roads this year is Rainham man I strongly dislike articles like this that use so many words to not say anything.

A SA cyclist becomes a political football. Amcu, Wasp to visit injured cyclist

The cyclist killed this week in Northern Oz was hearing impaired and a good man. Tributes flow for cyclist Michael Pinkerton

A slightly misleading headline to go with a solid article. Queens Precinct Hands Out 32 Moving Violations To Cyclists, None To Drivers There were 10 moving violations for cars, but a crap ton of technical violations and some serious violations (unlicensed use).

Portland tries to eliminate all traffic wrecks. PBOT director says new action plan will include ‘Vision Zero’ commitment I’m not sure how they will budget for this.

Infrastructure news from far West Canuckistan. Repairs starting on Stanley Park causeway This was the location of the wreck where some think the cyclist was pushed off the bike path in front of the bus by an angry pedestrian. Unless they start putting up a bunch more signs and make the path wider this os going to happen again.

A cyclist in the UK had started a campaign for road safety before his wreck. Daughters of injured Meltham cyclist hand over petition to finish campaign started by dad The campaign was to investigate wrecks on the roads so that better infrastructure could be used to prevent future wrecks. too late for this cyclist, but maybe it will help future cyclists not get hit.

Ford has been in the news a lot lately because they have been talking about what they are going to build after they get through building cars. Ford Electric Bike By Pedego — Love Highlights From Dealer Convention I don’t think they are going to sell Pedego bikes very long, I think that if they start selling lots of e-bikes then they will start making their own.

And those were all the links that fit the blog mission giving me fits or not.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Back from another doctor’s office, and the Feed

Yep, two days in a row travelling across the Metromess to visit a doctor and back to the grindstone (metaphoric) for Yr Fthfl Scrb. I’m so far behind on my personal e-mail it is not even funny, but keeping the blog updated is more important than a personal life :P (Just kidding, I skimmed and will actually read my mail at a later date)

When I opened up the Feed folder there was not a large selection of links to choose from. In fact I think there might have been a virtual tumbleweed rolling through the folder. Up first is an update on a CO hit-and-run. Fort Collins woman admitted she hit cyclist and left scene, report says I’m not reading a whole lotta remorse from this one. As was covered initially this was a hit-from-behind wreck with limited reaction time and room to get out of the way so really the only thing that could be done is to get the infrastructure right to prevent it.

The other link is also hit-and-run related, and from Enn Zed. Cyclist injured in hit-and-run Again, not much to go on here. From the location it appears that intersection protocols might be of some use, but as always if they get the infrastructure right it moots all of the protocols because all cyclists would have to contend with would be other cyclists and the wandering pedestrian.

And that’s it. Wow… So, read any good books lately? ;) Usually I put some nonsense about links giving me fits but this was it.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Help a bronie, and the Feed

Most people will agree that I am by no means a bronie (Even if I do have a soft spot for Fluttershy’s Lament). However I am a person that cares about fair treatment for everybody (except maybe drunk drivers that kill). Well lately a kid in North Carolina who likes My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic was bullied about that mercilessly, both physically and psychologically, to the point that he tried to hang himself to escape the pain. More details here He was not successful, but doctors say he may be permanently brain damaged because of the hypoxia. If you have any artistic talent and enough knowledge about MLP:FiM to assist I encourage you to submit something to this to help pay for the medical and legal bills resulting from this episode.

Up first was a difficult decision as there were so many “worthy” contenders, but I think the Tesla story starting to go viral is the top of the list. Tesla Motors Blamed For Cyclist Death: Did New Car Smell Cause Driver To Pass Out? [REPORT] and Driver Who Killed Cyclist Blames Crash on New Car Smell What can I say about this? Well for one thing the family of the victim is trying to aid the prosecution by getting Tesla Motors on record stating that nothing in their “new car smell” could induce a person to sleep unless they are already fighting to stay awake. They are making the defense pay for information that the prosecution will use against them, for the cost of filing a lawsuit they were going to file anyway.

A drunk driver who was nearly 4 times the legal limit for BAC% blames the trace amount of THC in the cyclists for the wreck. Trial set for accused drunk driver who hit cyclists, killing one This was a driver who hit two cyclists from behind who were riding in single file, killing the rear cyclist and crippling the front one, and tested at 0.307% BAC with the legal limit being 0.08. This is so close to the lethal amount for non-alcoholics that it isn’t even funny. This driver needs to be placed under the jail and left there until advanced decomposition has set in.

A drunk driver pleads guilty to seriously injuring a cyclist while driving drunk. Doctor pleads guilty to driving drunk, hitting cyclist OK this one survived with “serious injuries” but he could have just as easily been dead. The infrastructure needed to prevent this wreck is two-fold, physically segregated cycling infrastructure to prevent drunks from getting close enough to kill cyclists, and legal infrastructure that makes driving drunk so costly in both time and treasure to the drunk that people just don’t do it. I suggest that any wreck that leaves a victim with permanent injury or death result in the confiscation and scrapping of the weapon vehicle in addition to a permanent loss of license and also make driving with a license that has been revoked for DUI with death or injury be a major felony akin to the unlawful possession of a firearm. After all there is a 2nd Amendment that guarantees the right to keep and bear arms, but there is no corresponding right to use WMD as transportation; i.e. drive a motor vehicle.

Another SWSS in FL. Bicyclist hit, killed along St. Pete street Hit-from-behind protocols to avoid or to mitigate the damages, and get the infrastructure right to prevent.

This one seriously harshes my vibe. Cyclist killed during Tour de Palm Springs ran stop sign In spite of multiple witness reports that the cyclist stopped and was waved through the intersection by a car that stopped blocking the way, and that the weapon vehicle swerved into the left turn lane to pass the stopped car without slowing down, they are blaming the cyclist on this one. More Tour de Palm Springs officials to review event after death

More from CA via BikingInLA. Near Rapid Bus road kill, and a letter from a Brit driver that questions their care for the mentally ill

Another report on hit-and-run from the Great White North. Cyclist critical after Oshawa hit and run I don’t know if this is the same wreck from a different source than yesterday’s hit-and-run report, or a different wreck, but either way there was no place for the cyclist to get away from this wreck because of the heaps of snow piled on the sides of the road. Infrastructure to prevent.

More information than usual about a UK wreck. Vigil protest as first cyclist dies in London this year and People call for safety measures after first cyclist dies in London this year The first death was at an intersection that has had repeated pedestrian fatalities and serious injuries. That says something to me about the quality of the infrastructure. Also says something about the speed limit being too high for the area.

First link from Oz is a fatal wreck report from NSW. Cyclist killed in crash at Byron Bay The narrative reads like a hit-from-behind wreck, so protocols and infrastructure…

Also from Oz. Injured teen cyclist thanks police for helping him when injured in Dandenong The back wheel malfunctioned causing a loss of control wreck. When passers-by refused to help police on patrol saw him bleeding and applied first aid.

A wreck in Enn Zed. Cyclist injured after 4WD collision Intersection wreck with a vehicle that failed to yield to oncoming traffic, so protocols to avoid, and get the infrastructure right to prevent.

Last links are to pictures of my bike in final assembly after coming back from paint and powdercoat.Box going together.

Working on the bits before they go on the bike

And those were all the links that gave me fits today. today’s post is late because I had a chiropractor’s appointment to get my back adjusted and lined up right after I lost 11 mm from my left leg in the wreck leaving my left leg 17 mm shorter than my right, causing a severe pelvic tilt. This in turn causes me tons of low back pain, and tightness. The adjustments are getting my back back in line and reducing the amount of scoliosis from the pelvic tilt. Yay me!

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Going off-air again tomorrow, and the Feed

As you can see in the headline I will be away from the computer again tomorrow on church business, pretty much all day. I won’t be in any mood to do a post when I get back, either, because it will be after 2000 and I will need to consume food and also get up early to ride the bus to Sunday services. That, and I think cutting back to a 6-day schedule is better for my head. Get all the death and destruction out of my head for 2 days, and stay off the keyboard for at least 24 hours and I should look at the world with a less-jaundiced eye. I’ll still be the same grouchy curmudgeon at the keys I previously was, just (slightly) more sane and better able to hang onto that level of sanity. I’m still toying with the idea of dropping the wreck reports (and I recalculated the number of wreck reports I read over the 8 years this blog has been on various services, it’s more than 12K not the previous guess of 6K) to get a better toehold on sanity, but dropping back from 6 days of mayhem to 5 with one complete day away from the blog should do it for now. Saturdays are my slow day, click-wise. Apparently y’all have other things to do on weekends, whodathunkit?

Up first Houston is in media paroxysms over the drunk driver arrested for hit-and-run against a cyclist. Houston woman arrested in cyclist’s hit-and-run death and Woman accused in fatal hit-and-run of Houston cyclist appears in court also this commentary on the situation Can we just agree we are terrible at operating all vehicles? Apparently being an above-average driver in Houston is not jumping a high hurdle… as is true in most of TX from watching the news the last couple of days.

More on the cyclist hit wearing clothes on his bike (instead of the glow-in-the-dark clown suit) in CA. Killed Cyclist Identified At least in this article they did not mention the regular clothes instead of the GITDCS. And since nobody ever claimed the bike itself did not have at least rear-facing reflectors I think it’s safe to assume the bike was legally lighted and reflectored.

Also in CA more information about the wreck between a cyclist and a Tesla luxury car driving on the wrong side of the road. Tesla Motors named in fatal bike crash suit in Santa Cruz My opinion is this is a tactic to prevent the driver from using the “new car smell put me to sleep” defense in the criminal trial.

More on the MN cyclist run through a snowbank by a drunk driver in a van. He is dead: it doesn’t matter that he was a “careful” bicyclist and Organs of Bicyclist Killed in Mpls. Donated to Girl in Need What hasn’t been pointed out by all the people complaining about the cyclist not using the Greenway just a “few blocks” away, the driver was also not using I94 which was just a “few blocks” away…

In Jolly Olde someone finally got dinged for using the universal get-out-of-jail-free card. Jail for South Wales driver “blinded by sun” who killed cyclist The driver had a list of priors as long as my arm, and also left the scene without waiting for LEO or leaving proper contact data, but was not punished for either of those offenses. Also only a £120 fine? WTF the driver killed a man and then left the scene!

A bit of UK infrastructure that doesn’t get enough credit for reducing the death toll in London. London hospital that saved 668 cyclists: ‘Do more to prevent crashes’ That’s right, without quick transport to this level of care there would be another 7 deaths per year on average. But preventing wrecks is so much less expensive than treating the injured, so…

Speaking of infrastructure, it doesn’t do much good under lines of stationary cars. Gridlock

I love it when people reject bicycle infrastructure because there are no bicycles already using the non-existent infrastructure. City collects feedback on proposed cycle track system

A bit of Lifestyle from America’s Copenhagen. Freak Snow Can’t Stop Cycling in Portland and ‘Worst Day of the Year Ride’ cancels 45-mile route; 15-mile route still on So, snow can’t stop people who have to get to their destinations by bike, but it will deter people from riding for “fun”.

It seems like every day I need to link to something Ted Rogers puts out. Today is no exception. An open letter to cyclists from the Rock Store photographer, and a warning about a dangerous NELA bike lane

And those were all the links that gave me fits, or not, today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Things are “interesting” and the Feed

The Feed was light on links but heavy on the “personal interest” stories. I like those better than the reports of people getting maimed and killed. I almost didn’t need to do my daily web comic crawl to keep my head from exploding.

Up first is someone I haven’t written about for a long time, because he has been in prison. Unconfirmed rumor says Dr. Thompson may be back on the streets soon; LA BAC meets tonight I even made a special tag for him back when he was still in the news on an almost daily basis: TTTWLAMWAMD for The Thing That Walks Like A Man With A Medical Degree. I just could not believe an ER doctor could use a motor vehicle as a weapon when he had to deal with broken bodies from motor vehicles almost daily. As I posted to the article I hope a condition on his release is he never drive again.

A link that brings back bad memories of Chip Seal fighting the neanderthals in Ennis. Delaware Cyclist Ticketed for Riding His Bike Is Arraigned The cyclist was riding in a 9 foot wide car lane that was barely wide enough for a car, much less a bike and a car.

Sad news from the Emerald Isle. Female cyclist dies five days after crash in Kerry

Infrastructure! news. Sheriff releases two-year report on analysis of wrong-way drivers The scary part is they are trying to make the roads Drunk-Proof.

Transit strike? What transit strike, I ride a bike. Bike the strike! Let’s get London to work on two wheels

Comparison of costs of cycling to costs of motoring. My Carfree Story

It seems Anthony Weiner has had an epiphany. Anthony Weiner rides a bicycle This was the guy that just a couple of years ago was calling for the destruction of all bicycle infrastructure in NYC.

A participant in extreme sport says wear your helmet when attempting to defy gravity. THE HELMET ARTICLE

Last link is a fellow blogger with a lot of perspective. A frozen water bottle, a crisis of identity – and why winter cycling keeps winning me back

And those were all the links that I found interesting about bikes today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

I can hardly move my fingers, and the Feed

The trip to get the metals was not so bad, but bringing the tubes home was an “e-word”. My left thumb, index, and second finger are cramping up so bad I can barely manage to get the fingers to the correct keys when I type. Seriously I need to backspace and correct about every third word, especially if there are lots of left-hand letters. Can we say “Ouch!”? I’m saying that and a whole lot more. Basically what the issue is the tubes were taped together to carry right-handed and my right hand is busy when I walk holding my cane. When I walk with my cane I almost never need to use it to catch myself from a leg malfunction, but when I don’t have my cane I almost always end up needing it and falling on my side or face. So I almost always have my cane in my right hand ready to catch me if the leg decides to “take a break” while I’m walking, and as I’m actively using the cane I think that also helps prevent the leg from “quitting” on me. But that meant I had to carry an unwieldy collection of tubing home on DART with my left hand and trying to keep the bundle under control ended up giving me cramps in my thumb and first two fingers.

Up first is a DUI fatality from CA. Update: 21-year old bike rider killed by 18-year old drunk driver on Santiago Canyon Road in Orange and Fire Chief Finds Downed Cyclist on Way to Work, Aids in Search for Suspect Hit-from-behind wreck from the report the driver was going too fast for a human cyclist to take evasive maneuvers mooting the protocols, the cyclist was reportedly hit in a bike lane on a highway with a 55 MPH speed limit so definitely infrastructure could have been better as the Dutch model has cyclists separated from highways like that with a sturdy barrier that even a loaded semi would be unlikely to jump. Now on a personal note as of this posting the driver is being held without bail for trying to run and destroy evidence, along with the person who was helping destroy the evidence. The car has been seized as evidence along with the contents. This should happen with every DUI wreck, fatality or not.

Still in CA is a bike-on bike wreck in SoCal. SDPD officer struck by Critical Mass bicyclist Note that in a bike-on-bike wreck people only get minor injuries most of the time especially in urban environments.

A wreck that I can’t figure out the geometry for in NYC. [Update] Cyclist Struck By Car Near Prospect Park The updated report says the cyclist crossed the road and hit the weapon vehicle head on, but the visible damages are all wrong for that geometry. Notice the pringled front wheel and the damage to the passenger side bumper with very little to no damage visible on the windshield. Had the cyclist actually crossed the centerline that far there would have been a crushed windshield with lots of damage, and the front wheel would have been crushed in a straight line not pringled from the side. Until the “official” story can account for the damages to the bike and the (lack of) damages to the car I don’t buy it. And until I can account for the damages seen I can’t tell you how to avoid the wreck. Getting the infrastructure right would prevent a wreck like this, but that would be ALL the infrastructure, legal as well as physical.

A wreck that’s 100% infrastructure on Scotland. Cyclists knocked off by Waverley barrier and Cyclists injured by Edinburgh station anti-terrorism barriers I was looking really hard at the picture in the first link to find the “no bicycles” sign, but I guess it must be over on the other side of the sidewalk (and the size of a sheet of notebook paper).

A wreck in Enn Zed. Cyclist injured in Hills Rd crash And aside from the fact that a cyclist was hit at an intersection I know nothing about this wreck. So..Infrastructure! Ultimately it is the infrastructure that is at fault for not segregating the cyclist by both time and space. And there is plenty of room for bicycle infrastructure because “Traffic was not affected by the crash, police said.” If there’s enough room to transport a cyclist to hospital without affecting traffic, there’s more than enough room to install appropriate bicycle infrastructure.

And this bit of Infrastructure! news from the 49th State just makes your eyes pop. Anchorage motor vehicle laws stack the deck against cyclists If I’m reading this right even when a driver runs a red light and hits a cyclist, it’s the cyclist’s fault for not dodging the motor vehicle? WTF!?!

Final body count for 2013 from NYPD. NYPD: 16,059 Pedestrians and Cyclists Injured, 178 Killed in Traffic in 2013 The numbers are just mind-boggling when you stop and think that this is just for one large city, granted one of the largest cities in the world. Add in the near 100% injury rate when cars hit soft and squishy unprotected humans… and the fact that there were over 16K drivers who hit cyclists and pedestrians and only 9 got tickets… TANJ!

Stay off the roads when it’s foggy out because drivers refuse to slow down for reduced visibility? Safety bike riding rules that can save your life Why not just give drivers tickets for failing to reduce speed in bad visibility (Basic Speed Law Tran. Code §545.351(a) & (b))

Chronicling the long struggle to establish rules that ban trucks with huge blind spots in the EU. Northumberland campaigner joins Olympic cyclist in Brussels ahead of safety vote That such vehicles are allowed to be made and nobody has sued the manufacturer yet just boggles the mind…

From Oz comes a not-surprising report that common activities are much more dangerous than riding a bike even without bicycle infrastructure. You’re 35 times safer on your bike than playing rugby I imagine that few people think more than twice about their kid playing rugby (or football in America), but how many would never allow their kids to ride a bicycle to school?

And those were all the links that gave me fits (and then some) today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus