Category Archives: Advocacy

Bicycle advocacy opportunities and events

In the news: Bike crash app, 3-foot passing bill and bike trail access


Fishermen work their boat up the Sacramento River as the sun reflects off the CalSTRs building in West Sacramento on a recent morning along the Sacramento River Bike Trail. Salmon fishing along the Sacramento River is getting better every day according to the Western Outdoor News website.

In the news, early last week the state Assembly approved the 3-foot passing bill, according to a report by the California Bicycle Coalition and a story in the Sacramento Bee. Keep an eye out this week as the bill is expected to arrive on Gov. Brown’s desk.
While the 3-foot passing bill is good news, some bad news comes from an article in the Sacramento Press that says the state parks department is considering closing off one of two bicycle access points to Old Sacramento from the Sacramento River Bike Trail. Practical Cycle bike shop owner, Tim Castleman, whose shop is in Old Sac, has started a petition to prevent the closure, the article reports.
And, if you’re looking for an iPhone app to help in case of a bicycle collision, a New York City lawyer has come up with a free app called the Bike Crash Kit, according to a report in the Urban Velo magazine website.



Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

Leave a comment

Amazing inspirational video of the “Unstoppables”

Check out this inspirational video of some amazing cyclists. As their website states, “‘Unstoppables’ relates the story of everyday people who have reached unimaginable heights through sport, overcoming the obstacles that life has put in their way. People united in their belief that sharing experiences has individual and collective benefits.”
The video clip was produced by Black Train Films, a company that plans to complete a full-length documentary film about the “Unstoppables”

Leave a comment

Transportation bill receives “groans” from cycling advocates

A bicyclist heads north on 21st Street in Sacramento Thursday evening during the evening commute.

Bicycling advocates are labeling the federal transportation bill a disaster for cycling. The bill was finally filed on Wednesday.
“The bad news: it’s a terrible bill for biking and walking. The new law will likely represent more than 60% cuts in funding for biking and walking. It turns back 20 years of progress in federal policy to make our streets safer, healthier, and more accessible,” says the America Bikes blog. But it could have been worse, the blog goes on to say. Read the full blog post here.
For an excellent analysis of the bill, check out this post by Jonathan Maus on BikePortland.org. And, for a review of the legislation check out this article on DC.STREETSBLOG.ORG.



Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

Leave a comment

News and notes: SFGate and Slate

Morning Commute – A cyclist makes the turn off the bike trail into Old Sacramento at the end of I Street near the Sacramento History Museum on Tuesday morning as the sun rises over the city.

In the ongoing saga that is the federal transportation bill, Carolyn Lochhead, Washington correspondent for the San Francisco Chronicle recently wrote this analysis on the SFGate Politics Blog: Pedestrian and bicycle groups fear they will be thrown under bus.
And, while you’re at the Chronicle’s website, check out the column by C.W. Nevius that looks at Strava and its KOM (King of the Mountain) awards and how it allegedly causes reckless behavior.
“Set the fastest time, and you are awarded a KOM Crown. But face it; no one is setting a best time in the city without running stop signs and red lights. There may be only a few reckless KOM types on Strava, but they are exactly the kind of dangerous riders we’re trying to slow down,” Nevius writes.
And, lastly, another article that’s definitely worth reading is by Slate’s music critic, Jody Rosen, who recently had his bike stolen (in New York), but, was able to recover it using Twitter. Of note, Rosen cites some interesting bicycle statistics, “Bicycle theft is a national epidemic. Each year, more than 1 million bikes are stolen in the United States. In 2010, the most recent year for which the FBI has figures, stolen bikes accounted for 3.3 percent of U.S. larceny-theft cases. Those numbers only begin to tell the story — most bike thefts go unreported,” Rosen writes.



Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

1 Comment

LA Times story: San Francisco’s car-bike debate

A story in the Los Angeles Times by Maria L. La Ganga on Saturday looks at the ongoing conversation in San Francisco over bikes vs. cars vs. pedestrians. La Ganga uses the recent death of a pedestrian hit by a cyclist to take a look at San Francisco’s efforts to reduce automobile traffic.
“In the ongoing smart-growth discussion, San Francisco offers a cautionary tale for cities where officials are mulling antidotes to sprawl and working toward less dependence on the private auto,” La Ganga wrote. Read the article here.

Leave a comment

In the news, mobile apps, bike racks and riding in the lane

A cyclist checks out her smartphone while riding on the American River Bike trail near Sac State. A recent news article laments the lack of smartphone apps for cyclists.

Check out the lastest article by Blair Anthony Robertson in on sacbee.com about the new bike docks being sold by local business.
“They’re low-key and will never be mistaken for public art, but Sacramento-based Park a Bike’s Varsity model racks are considered one of the best of their kind,” Robertson writes.
Speaking of biking stuff, this recent article in the New York Times by Joshua Brustein laments the lack of smartphone apps available to cyclists.
“…I went looking for the biking equivalent of clever subway apps like Exit Strategy or EmbarkNYC, and was surprised at how little inventive thinking I found. For iPhone users, at least, there is not even a great way to get directions on a phone,” Brustein writes.
And with all the talk these days about the three-foot passing bill, there’s an interesting article on the Cycling Savvy website about why it is better to ride in the middle of the lane than on the side.
“Driving in the middle of the lane actually protects cyclists against the most common motorist-caused crashes: sideswipes, right hooks, left crosses, and drive-outs,” the article states.

Leave a comment

Sacramento Bike Racks


There seem to be a lot more bike racks going up around Sacramento. The city has been adding their standard bike racks along the downtown streets, but there are also some very inventive racks appearing, especially on the R Street corridor. Here are images of a few of the more interesting racks. Please leave a comment or use the contact form to send me a message about your favorite bike rack and I will try to add it to the gallery. All the images were taken with the Hipstamatic app on the iPhone to give them a different look.

1 Comment

Three-foot passing bill passes the CA Senate

Runtime
0:36
View count
62
The California Senate approved the three-foot passing bill this morning by a vote of 27-6 according to a story on Capitol Alert on sacbee.com. SB 1464 now moves on to the Assembly. I think the guy in the rocket ship who passed me on M Street this morning knew that the bill would pass since he definitely gave me three feet of clearance.


Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

Leave a comment

Bike to Work day is today


Cyclists stop at the fueling station outside of Old Soul Coffee and Edible Pedal in the alleyway between L Street and Capitol on Bike to Work Day in Sacramento on Thursday morning. The “Engergizer Station” was hosted by the Employees of the California Department of Public Health and Department of Health Care Services. For a comprehensive look at May is Bike Month in the Sacramento area, check out Blair Anthony Robertson’s story in today’s Sacramento Bee.

Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

Leave a comment

The Ride of Silence

A photograph of CSUS student Arlene Sasse remains attached to a light pole at the entrance to the university in Sacramento. Sasse was killed on her bicycle in the early morning hours of April 1, 2011 in a collision with a car as she crossed J Street at the entrance to the campus.

From the Hammerin’ Wheels Bike Club website: Wednesday evening at 6:45 p.m., cyclists will gather at Fremont Park at the corner of 16th and P Streets for “The Ride of Silence”. This is in conjunction with an event held throughout the United States and North America to honor cyclists who have been injured or killed, raise awareness toward cyclists and ask that everyone share the road.
The local ride will take cyclists to the intersection of J and H Streets at Carlson Drive, where previously two “Ghost Bikes” were located at the sites of fatal automobile / bicycle collisions. The most recent accident involved California State University, Sacramento student Arlene Sasse, 22, who was hit by a car while crossing J Street in the early hours April 1, 2011. Although the “Ghost Bike” is gone, a photograph of Sasse sitting in a chair playing the guitar is still attached to the light pole at the intersection.
For more information about the ride, go to this link at the Hammerin’ Wheels website.
By the way, the Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates will be holding a special “members preview” of the new SABA Carlson Corridor Bicycle Friendly Design at a meeting at the Presbyterian church at the intersection on Thursday evening, May 17. For more information about the meeting go to the SABA website or contact amy@sacbike.org.

Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

Leave a comment

May is Bike Month photo gallery

The May is Bike Month photo gallery is posted here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

In the news: making Sac a “cycling Shangri-La”, a Tour walk-up and more

A group of cyclists, some of whom are part of the SACOG after work workout ride group make their way along the American River bike trail last month.

Plenty of cycling news in The Bee over the weekend. On Friday, reporter Tony Bizjak focused his entire “Back Seat Driver” column on May is Bike Month in Sacramento. On Sunday, in the Forum section of the paper, former executive director of the Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates, Walt Seifert, authored a column listing his top 10 steps to making Sacramento a cycling Shangri-La.
“So why don’t we lead the nation in the share of trips made by bike? Why do cities like frigid Minneapolis and puddle-prone Portland outbike Sacramento?” Siefert asks.
Also on Sunday in the Travel section of the paper, Bee contributing writer, James Raia, penned a walk-up to the Amgen Tour of California headlined, “Plenty to eat, drink and do along Tour of California route.”


Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

1 Comment

May is Bike Month kick off event, more than a million miles pledged

In the photo above, Sacramento Wheelmen bike club members Bob Backer, left, and George Koch, right, listen to T.J. Windmiller, a mechanic at Mad Cat Bikes, (on stage above and in the photo at the left) explain how to change a flat tire at the the May is Bike Month kick off event at Fremont Park in Sacramento on Tuesday.

Several hundred people came out to Fremont Park for the official launch of Bike Month. There were free bike safety checks, raffles and presentations on subjects like how to properly lock a bike and how to change a flat tire. As of 2 p.m., 5,371 bicyclists had pledged 1,049,187 miles, according to a news release from the Sacramento Area Council of Governments. This is the eighth year volunteers, public agencies, businesses, and bicycling enthusiasts have partnered to promote bicycling as part of May is Bike Month, according to SACOG. All trips by bicycle count, whether a ride to work, school, shopping, or for recreation in the region which includes El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba counties.

Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

Leave a comment

Bicycle safety is the topic of KQED Forum radio show

A cyclist heads west along P Street across the intersection at 15th Street in Sacramento during the Wednesday evening commute.

If you haven’t listened to the Forum piece on public radio on bike safety in San Francisco that aired on KQED on Monday, April 9, you’re missing out. It was a great program. Although it focused on San Francisco, there is much to be learned from the program by cyclists in any community.
I downloaded the podcast from iTunes and listened to it on my morning commute – with only one earbud, which is legal.
Michael Krasny hosted the show with guests that included the executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, the executive director of Walk San Francisco, a captain in the San Francisco Police Department, the chair of the Bicycle Advisory Committee and a concerned San Francisco resident.
You can listen to it here:

or go to the KQED site and listen to the show.

Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

Leave a comment

Energizer Stations promote upcoming May is Bike Month

Runtime
0:15
View count
93

In the video above, morning commuters, Matt Schott of Placerville and Kevin Keady of Folsom ride into the May is Bike Month Energizer Station on M and 48th Streets in Sacramento Tuesday morning. In the photo at the right, Schott and Keady help themselves to food and drink at the station as Scott Anderson of Sacramento, right, pulls into the station.
The station was set up by Sacramento Area Council of Governments employees A.J. Tendick and Jeanie Hong to promote “May is Bike Month.”

May is rapidly approaching and with it, May is Bike Month, the annual event that promotes bicycle commuting. This year, the regional program is sponsoring “Energizer Stations” along key commuting routes in the Sacramento area. Most of the stations will be set up along the American River Bike Trail for two hours at a time, but they will also be erected in Roseville and Davis on certain days, according to A.J. Tendick a public information coordinator for Sacramento Area Council of Governments.
As an added incentive to stop at the “Energizer Stations,” commuters can “friend” them on Facebook and learn of the daily keyword. Mentioning the key word at the station gives commuters a chance of winning free socks or a t-shirt.
The May is Bike Month website has a list of upcoming “Energizer Stations” on the calender page of the site.

Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

Leave a comment

CA committee to hold hearing on three-foot-passing legislation

Runtime
0:28
View count
112

The state Senate Transportation & Housing Committee with hold its first hearing on the reintroduced three-foot-passing legislation, Senate Bill 1464 on Tuesday. California Bicycle Coalition Communications Director Jim Brown sent an email out on April 3 explaining the bill and asking for support. You can read the email here.
The legislation would require drivers to give bicyclists at least three feet of clearance when passing from behind, like the guy in this video who was probably less than a foot away from me when he passed me on Hwy. 49 south of Auburn last August.

Leave a comment

Eye of the Tiger

For more than a week, local mural artist, Alex “Cabron” Forster has been working on a mural entitled, “El Tigre” on a 17-foot by 85-foot wall at the office of Born Free USA at the corner of S and 12th streets.
Born Free is an animal welfare and wildlife conservation organization based in Sacramento since 1968.
“This mural packs a huge punch combining the power of animals, art and sheer size to move people,” said Sharie Lesniak, Born Free USA Creative Director in a prepared statement.
The organization plans to host a Second Saturday “Off the Wall” mural opening event on June 9, from 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the parking lot in front of the mural.

Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

1 Comment

In the news: 3-foot passing bill returns, bike commuting tips and fatal accident in SF

A cyclist heads across the Guy West Bridge Thursday evening as clouds billow overhead.

The three-foot passing bill is has returned. The new bill, SB 1461 is very similar to the previous bill that Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed, according to the Davis Bike Club’s monthly newsletter, “Changing Gears.”
“SB 1464 does not contain the exception found in SB 910 that required drivers to slow to 15 MPH when passing closer than three feet. The CHP opposed that provision, which was the reason Gov. Jerry Brown cited when he vetoed the bill. So for now SB 1464 doesn’t make any exceptions to the three-foot requirement,” according to the story in the newsletter.
Pennsylvania enacted a four-foot passing law just this month, becoming the 19th state to add a bike passing law to the books, according to an article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
In other news, if you’re looking for an article about bike commuting in these days of exorbitant gas prices, the Sacramento Bee published a brief article by veteran TV meteorologist, Terri Bennett, titled, “Do Your Part: Top 7 secrets to commuting by bike.”
“”Don’t expect the pain at the pump to end anytime soon. That makes it the right time to grab your bike and use it to get to work and run errands,” Bennett writes.
And last, sadly, there was a report this morning on SFGate concerning a pedestrian who was hit by a cyclist. A 71-year-old San Bruno man who was hospitalized after being hit by a cyclist last Thursday died Monday, the website reported.

Update – Things to do this weekend:
Tonight (April 6) is the Team LIVESTRONG Happy Hour and Course Unveiling for the Davis Challenge. The route will be unveiled at 7:00 PM. The event begins at 5:30 and runs through 8:30 PM at Sudworks in Davis. The LiveSTRONG Challenge will be held in Davis on Sunday, June 24th.
Saturday is Party Pardee in Ione. The Sacramento Bike Hikers signature ride has been sold out for months, but SABA is looking for volunteers to help with their valet bike parking from 10:30 am – 1:30 pm or 1:30 pm – 4:30 pm in Howard Park in Ione. They are looking for 6 volunteers to park bikes and a super volunteer with a truck to transport the compound to and from the event. If you can help, email Larry Robinson at volunteer[at]sacbike[dot]org.
And then on Monday night, the film Bicycle Dreams will be showing at 7:00 pm at
the Varsity Theater, 616 2nd Street in Davis. Tickets are $11 in advance, $15 at the door. The award-winning film by Stephen Auerbach takes an up-close look at what RAAM riders go through.

Leave a comment

Long Beach is becoming a bicycling community


Lots of stories in the news these days about the efforts in Long Beach, Calif. to become a more bike friendly community. Consider the New York Times travel story by Freda Moon with the headline, “36 Hours: Long Beach, Calif.” which chronicles the transformation of the port city.
“As part of Long Beach’s push to become the most bike-centric city south of Portland, Ore., the city has built bike boulevards and a Bike Station (bikestation.com/longbeach), developed a weekly “Bike Saturday” incentive program (bikelongbeach.org/events) and begun an annual bike festival (longbeachbikefest.org), held each May,” Moon writes.
Then there was the January story in Grist, an environmental-advocacy website headlined, “Cycles and cents: One city sets out to prove that bikes are good for business.
And finally, Long Beach has a great cycling website, if you are planning on cycling in the area. The website professes to have something for every cyclist.
“Looking for a way to get around Long Beach on your bike? No problem. Bike Long Beach has the answer. Explore the website to discover the latest and greatest on biking in Long Beach. Whether you are an avid cyclist, a college commuter, or simply curious about biking, this website has something for you,” it states.
So, if you’re headed for Long Beach anytime in the near future, take your bike.

Leave a comment

In the news: weather coming, trail detour continues, interesting editorial


Cyclists ride under the Hazel Avenue bridge recently with the American River slowly moving along behind them. The river is obviously low for this time of year, but an approaching storm should add some much-needed water to the river and snow to the Sierra’s.
In other news, Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates member John Whelan reports the bike trail detour at mile 3.5 has been extended until Friday. “The scope of the work has doubled because the beaver burrow was much more extensive, and the levee engineers and staff were deeply concerned about the beaver burrow affecting the flood worthiness of the levee,” Whelan said in an email to members.
Lastly, a letter to the editor in the Davis Enterprise by Davis resident John Whitehead brings up some interesting issues about cyclists not stopping at stop signs.

Posted from Rancho Cordova, California, United States.

Leave a comment

In the News: Bike trail detours, stylish bike rack, Bee editorial

There are two bike trail detours scheduled this week, according to an email sent out by SABA. Starting Thursday, Feb. 23, there will be a detour from mile 2.5 at Del Paso Blvd. to mile 3.5 for trail repair. Construction should be done by Monday, Feb. 27. Then, On Saturday, Feb. 25, the Guy West Bridge will be closed to all traffic for bridge inspection and repair.
Speaking of SABA, if you are a volunteer, tonight, Wednesday, Feb. 22, is their Volunteer Appreciation Party at Broadacre Coffee beginning at 6 p.m.
In other news, Sacramento Bee writer Blair Anthony Robertson penned an interesting article recently on local carpenter and furniture maker, Steven Tiller, who crafted a stylish new bicycle rack called a Bike Valet.
“Tiller’s elegant, sculptural Bike Valet came to life once he decided he wanted to store his bike and still have something nice to look at – something more than a bike leaning against a wall or hanging from a hook in the ceiling,” Robertson said.
Also in The Bee this week is a compelling editorial about the transportation bill currently in the House of Representatives. The piece, entitled, “Transportation bill should be roadkill” starts out like this, “Apparently the Republican leadership in the U.S. House of Representatives doesn’t walk or bicycle much, or spend time riding subways or trains. They definitely don’t spend much time riding buses.”

Leave a comment

Vote on highway bill delayed

According to “The Hill” website, Speaker John Boehner has delayed a vote on the $260 billion transportation bill …”a clear signal GOP leaders lack the votes to win approval of the package,” Keith Laing and Russell Berman reported in their story.
The League of American Bicyclists says, “We remain opposed to the overall bill, H.R. 7, because of its regressive attacks on transit, environmental protections, planning and bicycling.” In a post on their website, the league said it has written letters to, “…members and supporters in a few key House districts to ask for their help in getting the votes needed to pass the Petri/Johnson amendment.”

Leave a comment

Inspiration for bicycle reuse

Thinking of reusing bicycles? Check out this link at the Inspiration Green website for some ideas. Very cool site.

Leave a comment

Bikeway standards bill approved by state Assembly

The state Assembly has approved a bill to modernize bikeway standards in California according to a report by the California Bicycle Coalition. The bill, Assembly Bill 819, was authored by Assemblyman Bob Wieckowski, D-Fremont, in early January. It was later amended by the Assembly Transportation Committee, “…removing our proposal to allow communities to follow standards such as those developed by the National Association of City Transportation Officials,” the coalition reported. The full report can be found here.

Leave a comment

House to vote on key transportation bill on Thursday

League of American Bicyclists and American Bikes alerted their members last week to contact their representatives in the House and ask them to preserve funding in an upcoming transportation bill for bicyling and pedestrians.
“Next Thursday, the House Transportation Committee will vote (see timeline) on the American Energy and Infrastructure Jobs Act, a bill that eliminates crucial funds for biking and walking. Representatives on the Transportation Committee are key positions to save dedicated funding for biking and walking,” said an article on bikeleague.org.
For more information about the act and how you can become involved, go to the this article at bikeleague.org or this article at dc.streetblog.org.

Leave a comment

“Bikes Make Life Better” video recognized by TED

The peopleforbikes.org blog just announced that their “Bikes Make Life Better” video has been recognized by TED as “a 2012 Ad Worth Spreading.” Congrats to PFB. Nice video.

Runtime
2:34
View count
130,748

Leave a comment

Accidents happen, be prepared

As the new year begins, it’s a good time to think of reviewing your auto insurance coverage. While every cyclist hopes never to have a collision with a car, accidents happen. And, they can be incredibly expensive if you’re significantly injured.
I was reminded of this recently as I read an email exchange on the SABA (Sacramento Area Bicycle Advocates) discussion list. In response to a query about what to do after a bicycle accident, SABA Executive Director Tricia Hedahl, who was involved in an accident last year, replied with the following email:

Here’s a message my husband wrote to friends on our lessons learned:

1. Immediately talk to a lawyer; don’t talk to the police, the driver, and especially not the driver’s insurance company. Personal injury lawyers generally collect a portion of whatever they collect; so, if you don’t get anything neither do they. They generally charge 30% – 40% of whatever you collect. Find a good one as they all charge the same and a good one will take care of everything for you. 2. Your own car insurance coverage will cover you, even though you weren’t driving at the time. Review your uninsured/under insured motorist coverage and boost it up to $1,000,000. Tricia and I just increased ours and it will cost us about $8/month more than the $25K we were running. 3. If you have health insurance that covered your hospital stay, don’t freak out when you find out that there is still an outstanding bill of $216,000. They are only able to collect on a portion of whatever you recover from the person who was at fault (in California they can only collect 30% of what you recover, up to the total bill). If you collect nothing, then you owe them nothing. If you don’t have health insurance, you are likely screwed with a massive bill, so read #2 again. In our case, the driver had $10K in coverage. We’ll be able to collect the $10K plus $15K from our car insurance ($25K coverage less the $10K that we received from the at-fault driver). Of the $25K total collected, 1/3 goes to the hospital, 1/3 to the lawyer, and we’ll end up with $8K. Money that will go toward Tricia’s continuing care and rehab.

Leave a comment

Does the GOP hate bicycles?

A friend forwarded me this Mother Jones article that sums up the debate in Washington about funding for bicycle-friendly transportation projects.

Leave a comment

Group hopes to add bike lanes to Freeport Blvd.

Tonight is an important meeting at C.K. McClatchy High School concerning adding bike lanes to a stretch of Freeport Blvd. from just north of the Sac City College campus to Taylor’s Market near the light rail station. The meeting is at 5:30 p.m. in the cafeteria of C.K. McClatchy High School on Freeport Blvd. This information comes from David Hagerty of the local bicycle advocacy group, SAFFE.

A cyclist makes his way southbound on Freeport Blvd. Thursday morning along the shoulder of the street where no bike lane exists.

Posted from Sacramento, California, United States.

1 Comment

Giant ad: Reality does suck, luckily bicycles don’t…

Giant bicycles takes advantage of the latest controversy surrounding a General Motors ad that upset cyclists around the country. You can read the story at the Los Angeles Times. Here’s a copy of the ad from Giant.

Leave a comment