The out-of-town news thread, vol. II
When a car mows down a pedestrian in India, the victim’s family often assumes that justice is unachievable, e.g. that rich drivers would bribe themselves out of punishment. But video evidence may help change that:
Interesting new bike design:
Yeah, interesting MOTORCYCLE design.
I have no idea who the target audience is for this thing.
So, it turns out that you really only need to do intense exercise for one minute: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/04/27/1-minute-of-all-out-exercise-may-equal-45-minutes-of-moderate-exertion
I might try this, the intense exercise I mean. I do a lot of the non-intense kind.
Traffic lights installed on the ground in German city. Why? For phone-gazing pedestrians:
From Howell, MI (north west of Detroit)
Bikes welcome in downtown Howell
City officials noted the increasing popularity of bicycle riding, especially as more area residents opt for more-active lifestyles, as reason to rescind the old ordinance.
Sounds nice. But this is their idea of bike friendly:
The city this spring will install 10 pavement marking signs at downtown entry areas, indicating riders should dismount walk walk their bikes.
If that is the new ordinance, what was the old ordinance? Do we need to get @Erica to do there what she did for North Ridgeville, OH?
Boston MA: ‘City Council approved a proposal Wednesday to lower the speed limit from 30 mph to 20 mph in the city of Boston, unless otherwise posted.
‘The measure, which was supported unanimously, would also decrease the speed limit to 15 mph in school zones, as well as other “municipally designated zones,” such as areas near senior centers or MBTA stations.
‘“We need to eliminate traffic fatalities in the city streets,” said Councilor Frank Baker, who sponsored the proposal. “Lowering the speed limit is an important step in the right direction.”’
(The measure still needs to be signed by the mayor and, for some reason, passed by the state legislature.)
It needs state approval because it’s a home-rule overriding the Massachusetts General Law WRT traffic regulation. Not something the state legislature generally favors.
Boston City Council is essentially powerless, but at least they and the mayor and the state DOT are generally pro-bike. Things have come a long way in the past 15 years thanks to the previous mayor.
Tho this reply belongs in the “Taking the Lane” thread, I’ll deposit it here.
MassBike is the statewide bike advocacy group, and like BikePgh, they’re generally conflict-averse and (like most bike “advocacy” groups) view their primary mandate as educating and encouraging non-cyclists to begin riding, rather than doing anything meaningful to improve conditions for people who actually ride bikes already.
Out of sheer frustration with that, a new group formed called the “Boston Cyclists’ Union” who are much more outspoken about the issues that cyclists face daily on the streets. Both groups seems to coexist and support one another, for the most part.
Perhaps that dual-organization model might be an option here. Although the progress in Boston would not have gotten anywhere without the strong support of the previous mayor, no matter what the advocacy groups did.
A 20mph speed limit within city limits in Pittsburgh is long overdue.
particularly in crowded areas: Downtown, Oakland, etc.
Do our elected representatives have the spine to make this happen?
Is BikePgh moving on this front?
This is really important. In the meanwhile cyclists and pedestrians are dying in the streets (literally).
Regarding the one minute of intense exercise, I’ve seen similar items recently, as well.
There is also the doing away with the carbohydrate-heavy diet and going with a high fat approach, which sustains one longer w/o the need to continuously eat during a long workout.
A glimpse of urban biking in California, from a film created by AAA in the midst of the 1970s bike boom: “Only One Road: the bike-car traffic mix”.
* almost no helmets
* no bike clothes
* cyclists are biking closer to parked cars than we do
* cars driving slower
* cars driving with windows open (partly a California thing)
@ ahlir A 20mph speed limit within city limits in Pittsburgh is long overdue.
If they enforced the speed laws in Pittsburgh, my life would change profoundly.
Changing a number on a sign when it’s not enforced? Why bother?
Regarding the 1975 California Film…
Ah, the good old days. What we didn’t know didn’t hurt us. There were fewer haters back in the ’70s and the country roads were a little closer to the big city, making an escape to peace and quiet a bit easier.
L.A. ordered to pay $23.7 million in ‘dangerous intersection’ death
A jury on Monday found the City of Los Angeles primarily liable for a traffic collision that killed a scientist in San Pedro three years ago.
The jury awarded $23.7 million to the widow and young son of Thomas Guilmette, a 59-year-old Northrop Grumman employee who died three years ago after his motorcycle struck a car that had inched into traffic on a busy avenue in northwest San Pedro.
…residents…had complained for years about the blind corner at Summerland and Cabrillo avenues but the city was “not responsive.” …Drivers waiting on Cabrillo to turn left onto Summerland were forced to edge into oncoming traffic to peer around a blind corner, attorneys said.
…The judgment was unusually large, [the family’s attorney Don] Liddy said, because attorneys showed the jury that L.A. officials had planned in 2001 and 2009 to make changes to the intersection that could have improved visibility.
After Guilmette’s death, city officials added a stop sign on Summerland at Cabrillo and restricted street parking there in an attempt to improve visibility.
“It wasn’t until after the [crash] that they followed their own plan,” Liddy said.
I didn’t want to be secretary of balloon doggies… er, bikes! The bikes demanded it!
This BBC story says, regarding cycling or exercising in polluted air, that the benefits of exercise almost always outweigh the risks of health problems due to pollution. “It found that for an average air pollution concentration in an urban area, the tipping point – when the risks begin to outweigh the benefits – comes after a huge seven hours of cycling or 16 hours of walking a day.” (But I’m guessing Pittsburgh’s air is worse than “average” urban air pollution).
If that worries you about cycling, consider this other study that suggests that the air pollution inside a car is sometimes worse than that outside, due to nitrogen dioxide:
A Beloit WI woman dies after being hit by a man on a bicycle
This story has me as mad as I usually get with most car crashes; let’s blame the victim and no serious charges. WTF
What do you think?
Street view of location https://goo.gl/maps/XtzURbYgjft
“the only charge Bolshma-is facing is an ordinance violation for riding his bike on the sidewalk.”
What about, at least, involuntary manslaughter, to start with?
Fatal accidents involving stoned drivers soared in Washington since pot was legalized
“Fatal accidents involving stoned drivers soared in Washington since pot was legalized.”
I’m noticing an rising number of vehicles passing by that leave a thick odor of weed in their wake. I’m amazed by this.
What’s wrong with staying home, sitting on the couch watching The Wall and eating Cheetos?
BUY YOUR MUNCHIES BEFORE YOU GET STONED!
@marko, I agree that he should face some additional sanction beyond a ticket for riding on the sidewalk. Of course, he would be liable under civil law, just as when a motorist kills somebody through inattentive driving. So that’s something.
But I don’t think an involuntary manslaughter charge would stand, for the same reason it is hard to get juries to convict on this against motorists. There has to be something additional (such as DUI) for someone to be convicted — even though the charge seems to fit as the law is written.
I actually don’t know what the appropriate thing to do is. At the very least, the cyclist should take a course on how to ride in a city, and get off the sidewalk.
Regarding dope(s) on the trail:
There is much “weed” odor along the multi-use trails these days–and it ain’t from pollen or skunks…I’ll have to keep an eye open for littered Cheetos bags.
I DO prefer that odor to tobacco odor from second hand smoke–which we know is hazardous to one’s health
I don’t think Red was referring to odors on trails, but rather roads.
The pot study is a lot of definitive hype, but I’m not sure how scientifically sound the results are. My statistical classes are well behind me and I know there are others on here with vast more understanding than I, but when you delve into the details, there are a lot of assumptions. And there is this:
Slightly more than half of all drivers had an unknown (missing) values for THC presence and concentration, including 1,243 (41.0%) who were not tested for drugs at all
So to fill in those unknown cases they created an “imputation model” which took into account a bunch of variables like day of week, make of car, age of driver, seatbelt use, etc. to build a ‘likelihood’ that the person would have been tested positive if they had been tested. So they threw a lot of random variables against the wall and looked for correlations, and surprise, they found some. They even state bias could still be present in the imputed values. I’m not sure I have much confidence in their results.
And then there is the larger issue of there being a lot of variability in THC blood concentration and user impairment, etc. which the study also points out.
So yeah, I don’t want people getting impaired and driving, and I don’t want them distracted by their phones or brushing their teeth while driving either, but this would not be the study I would base a whole lot of laws around.
Take these reported scientific studies with a grain of salt (though that might cause high blood pressure according to some studies):
Two separate bike crashes in Philly in less than 24 hours (one fatal)
In the TV video I find it interesting that a cab is sitting part way into the bike lane right in front of the reporter and — nothing. She never comments on it.
Bike light kickstarter in Britain helps monitor road conditions and alert EMS if the cyclist crashes with integrated APP.
Philadelphia’s Bike Coalition goes for a ride with reactionary tabloid columnist Stu Bykofsky–who in one of his many anti-cyclist columns coined the term ‘pedalphile’–and raises nearly $2000 for a local shelter and service agency: http://bicyclecoalition.org/byko-ride-raises-nearly-2000-charity/
I really like this graphic from industrial engineering, showing why bike helmets should be the last resort when preventing injury while bicycling:
Some interesting things about this crash report in Boston:
A: “The truck does not appear to have sideguards, which are designed to push cyclists away from the truck to prevent them from being swept under the wheels in a crash.”
THEY MAKE SUCH A THING!??! Wow.
B: no mention of helmet use or the word ‘accident’ in the article.
@rustyred yup, side guards have slowly been installed in more and more trucks over the past few years. The ‘burgh has yet to see them (or at least I haven’t seen one), but the City of Boston, as of October 2014, mandates that all large, city-contracted vehicles be equipped with those guards and other safety devices:
The bike is under the cab, which makes it more difficult to explain this by the cyclist pulling up on the truck’s right and getting hooked. That may well be what happened, if in fact she managed to get almost in front of the truck while doing that, and got run over.
Video would help explain what actually happened.
I have not heard of these sideguards, either. Rather like a cattle-catcher on a locomotive?
Not sure I would be down with encountering this in the bike lane. 1500 can buy a lot of bike.
@marko82, would this help get a person from, say, your street to the nearest bus stop?
I look at that Perrymont-Lindisfarne district by me in the Ross-McCandless area, and there are a lot of people a mile from a transit stop who could very well ride the 12 or O12 every day, but the main reason they drive is to get that first/last mile.
“America! The cyclist is not your enemy” by Jason Gay in the Wall Street Journal:
Can he get an “Amen!”?
@jz Those things would be great somewhere that has smooth pavement.
Looks like they would cause and immediate OTB on the typical deep potholes that appear after every freeze thaw cycle. I would prefer a normal folding bike with 20″ wheels or larger.
Motivate, operator of Citi Bike, Capital Bikeshare, Hubway, and a half-dozen other bikeshare systems across the US (though not Pittsburgh) announced last week their bikes will now be assembled by Detroit Bikes, who will also build the wheels:
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