Daily Archives: October 12, 2011

Lots to filter, and an interesting Full Moon service

Well, I have 2 days of weekday Feed to filter after the coffee kicks in, but first I want to tell you about the Full Moon service we had last night. We did a tool (re)dedication ceremony, and I took Blue for a spiritual cleansing and rejuvenation. Here at WoaB we consider bicycles as magical tools that require physical and spiritual maintenance for best use. Physical maintenance is the usual pump tires, lube chain, adjust brakes, and clean off the dirt and grime that any bicycle needs. Spiritual maintenance is both easier and harder, easier in that precise adjustments and mechanical knowledge are not required, harder in that there is more preparation required to set the space. You can’t just walk out to the garage and do a magickal re-adjustment with a wand, any more than you can adjust brakes with a crescent wrench (adjustable spanner to our UK readers) when the cable retention is done by allen head bolts. I won’t go into the gory details and entrails (no animals were harmed or consumed in the creation of this rite) of the ritual, but we first cleansed the space, set the space with the elements, invited deity of both genders, then spiritually cleaned and (re)dedicated our tools. Because the process is so involved we usually do this as a group and get everyone’s tools at the same time. Since I have a group ride coming up this weekend and I don’t want Blue doing anything attention-grabbing (like coasting up a hill like he did on the Chasing Lee Harvey Oswald ride) but I do want him feeling his best I took advantage of this ritual to get things right on him.

Wow, people in Canada have been losing their minds this weekend. Almost every wreck in the Feed was in the Great White North, and the trial of the man accused of hitting 5 cyclists in the bike lane and driving off in 2009 is just now getting underway. This past weekend was Canada’s Thanksgiving with the usual number of incidents a long holiday weekend creates, and a number of cyclists were involved.

Up first is the start of that trial of the man accused of hitting 5 cyclists riding single-file in the bike lane. Driver pleads not guilty in 2009 March Road crash that injured 5 cyclists and ‘Pop, pop, pop’ as cyclists hit, trial told I’m really trying to maintain my journalist’s detachment here, but I’m going to have to be honest on this one. I’m mad, as angry as I can be about this case. This was not an “accident”, this was cold-blooded attempted murder. The facts as released are that the cyclists were single file in the bike lane when the van pulled over into the lane and hit them one by one. There was a noticeable space in the impacts, they weren’t poppoppoppoppop, it was pop, pop, pop, pop, pop as the cyclists were hit. In other words had the driver been distracted or drowsy there was time between the impacts to come back to the situation at hand and move out of the bike lane, but the driver continued on until there were no more cyclists in front of him before pulling back into the main lane of travel. There were no skid marks from braking, witnesses reported the van never slowed and that the brake lights never came on. This to me indicates that there was some degree of deliberateness in his actions making this either an assault with a deadly weapon or an attempted murder of five people.

Down the street, literally, from where the trial was starting, a cyclist is doored to death. Cyclist killed on Queen Street when ‘doored’ by parked car and Cyclist killed in downtown Ottawa more MorningFile: cycling tragedy down the street from cycling trial still more Ottawa cyclist dies after hit by car door A ghost bike is already there Cyclist killed in fatal collision identified Again this is a preventable incident, if drivers were treated like people carrying around deadly weapons instead of petted on the head and told “How bad for you to see that” after killing a cyclist. The driver that was driving the car that hit the cyclist had no time to react after the cyclist bounced off the suddenly opened door and fell in front of here. I bode no ill will against the driver of that motor vehicle, the driver of the parked car that opened the door into the cyclist as she passed causing her to fall needs to be charged for some kind of negligent homicide.

Still in the environs of Ottawa, another cyclist is killed after being run over from behind. Retired Ottawa dentist killed in bicycle, truck accident Oversized vehicle hits cyclists from behind killing one, everyone involved is senior citizen status or older including the witnesses. I call good on the 80YO cyclist that saw the wreck, just for riding that far at that age… To avoid a similar wreck use hit-from-behind protocols and always have an escape route in mind when riding, if possible. more Retired Ottawa dentist dies after collision with truck

Still in the Great White North one cyclist’s death was just one of many traffic fatalities on the same day… Crashes claim six in Quebec Not enough in this report to even identify a precise location much less a cause of the wreck.

Back in the US if I read the report correctly a cyclist was hit-and-run while riding on the sidewalk in CA. Teen cyclist injured in hit-and-run in Glendale OK slight blame on the cyclist for riding salmom on the sidewalk, but really? Hit-and-run on the sidewalk should be treated like assault with a deadly weapon, because there is no way to get on the sidewalk and back off again without either being totally drunk or otherwise chemically impaired, or doing it on purpose.

Hit-from-behind in CO. Cyclist killed by car in Westminster the cyclist was taking one of those “back roads” that drivers are always claiming that cyclists should be restricted to and still got hit because there wasn’t enough room to pass in the same lane with the cyclist.

A NY cyclist that survived a wreck is awarded $36 million in his wreck, partially payable by the city for it’s bad street implementation. Jury: City Should Pay Young Brooklyn Cyclist Injured on Dangerous Street $19 Mil I’m still trying to figure out why the cyclist who was obeying the law when he was hit from behind was 10% at fault for getting hit.

From the UK comes a report of a man being found guilty in the death of a cyclist. Family of cyclist killed by falling fridge ‘hope lorry driver rots in prison’ This is another one of those wrecks that the cyclist just can’t avoid, a shifting load on a truck. In this case the load was 18,000 pounds of refrigeration unit that squashed the cyclist like a bug. It would have done similar to any road user that it fell on, it just happened to be a cyclist there for it to fall on.

From Enn Zed comes a call for doing something about a hazard to pedestrians and cyclists. Cyclists warned to watch for mauling magpies From the comments you would think that cyclists are the ones causing the attacks. I’m no ornithologist so I have no idea how they would prevent this from happening.

And news about that viral video of the antelope that ran over the mountain biker in Africa. Teen recounts ‘Buck Norris’ incident Ordinarily I don’t cover mountain bike wrecks, but this one was so (in)famous I had to include the link. Wildlife encounters are outside my expertise, as I pointed out in the Enn Zed story above.

Ghost Bikes in Upstate NY. A ghostly reminder of a bicyclist Support your neighborhood Ghost Bike.

Infrastructure! in NYC in the form of a statistics accumulator that displays wrecks on a map, letting you visually tell where improvements need to be made. CrashStat Upgrade Provides Interactive, Up-To-Date Street Safety Data

And that’s all I have today (and yesterday). Now I get to go work on my bike to make it cargo-worthy…

Billed @$0.02, Opus