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Fall from bike spins LA mayor into cycle advocate

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Fall from bike spins LA mayor into cycle advocate

Old 08-15-10, 09:08 PM
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Fall from bike spins LA mayor into cycle advocate

After the mayor of LA fell and broke his elbow in a cycling accident, he seems to have an epiphany about the need to accommodate bicycles.

Cyclists seem to be a bit dubious about this, but it's hard to disagree with someone who has had first-hand experience.

https://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/...ZCdsAD9HK1JAO2

LOS ANGELES — Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is the new champion of cyclists' rights in the nation's second-largest city, a conversion that came after a bone-breaking fall from his own bicycle.
The mayor, who said little on the topic during five years in office, is campaigning to make streets safer for cyclists after a parked cab abruptly pulled out across a bike lane, causing him to shatter an elbow. The ill-fated ride was his first on city streets since taking office.
Since the July 17 accident, Villaraigosa has utilized the Huffington Post and YouTube to say that it's time to recognize that bicycles also belong on LA's streets, which were largely designed for autos. In the YouTube video, he announced plans to convene a bicycle safety summit.
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Old 08-16-10, 11:41 AM
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I'm not sure how better bike facilities would prevent an injury like this?
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Old 08-16-10, 01:19 PM
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Funny how things like this don't matter until it actually affects YOU.
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Old 08-16-10, 01:34 PM
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it's a conspiracy! the taxi driver is also a cyclist!
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Old 08-16-10, 03:21 PM
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It's what bicycling needs - highly placed cycling advocates. If more mayors, city officials, traffic officials, cops, etc see what it's like from a cyclist's perspective, we might get more sympathy, awareness, and better facilities. Or, at least, wider passes and fewer 'doorings'.

To make a ridiculous example, if Brad Pitt or Justin Beiber (sp?) were hit while biking somewhere, I imagine a lot more people would pay attention. Maybe people wouldn't automatically blame the cyclist in an accident if the cyclist were well known.
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Old 08-16-10, 04:41 PM
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Originally Posted by 4000Miles
Funny how things like this don't matter until it actually affects YOU.
Yes! I didn't go to the bike summit this morning so I can't comment on what took place but I know a lot was said.
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Old 08-16-10, 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by CAJohn
It's what bicycling needs - highly placed cycling advocates. If more mayors, city officials, traffic officials, cops, etc see what it's like from a cyclist's perspective, we might get more sympathy, awareness, and better facilities. Or, at least, wider passes and fewer 'doorings'.

To make a ridiculous example, if Brad Pitt or Justin Beiber (sp?) were hit while biking somewhere, I imagine a lot more people would pay attention. Maybe people wouldn't automatically blame the cyclist in an accident if the cyclist were well known.
We has a thread here recently that talked about mayors who commute. https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...o-bike-to-work Turns out there are quite a few North American mayors who commute, some of them quite regularly.

I imagine it does help to have city officials on your side, but remember that even these guys are up against a pretty well-organized car-commuting community.
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Old 08-16-10, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Roody
I'm not sure how better bike facilities would prevent an injury like this?
If he'd had close air support, the A10s could have disabled the cab with autocannon fire before it cut him off.
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Old 08-16-10, 08:27 PM
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Originally Posted by KD5NRH
If he'd had close air support, the A10s could have disabled the cab with autocannon fire before it cut him off.
With his reputation he was more than likely looking at a skirt and didn't see the cab.
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Old 08-16-10, 09:04 PM
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Here is another video from our local ABC 7 news. I (Los Angeles resident) was watching this after I had to push a large cart of food home because the streets here are too crowded with insane drivers and I did not feel I could maneuver my bike with a heavy load of food.

https://abclocal.go.com/kabc/video?id=7612842

Full story here:

https://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/local/los_angeles&id=7612545

However you look at it, I was always "invisible" to everyone long before the mayor was even in politics. If anything, the last thing I need now is those phony recreational "bike paths" for the soccer mons & kids. I need direct passageways separate from all the overcrowded streets filled with the problematic people like the idiot "professional driver" that busted the mayor's arm. Only then will cycling be truly safe in LA-and we will be able to ride without helmets like the Amsterdam residents do.

Last edited by folder fanatic; 08-16-10 at 09:19 PM.
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Old 08-16-10, 09:13 PM
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More on this story. The mayor is holding a "town hall" meeting tonight on ways to make cycling easier and safer.

“If there’s one thing everyone now knows after my recent accident, it’s that I like to bike in Los Angeles,” he wrote on his blog recently. “The City’s landscape, climate, and neighborhoods offer a cyclist’s paradise. Biking in Los Angeles should be a natural. Unfortunately most of our City was built with cars in mind. It’s time to recognize that bicycles also belong on L.A.’s streets.”
https://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lano...it-monday.html
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Old 08-25-10, 07:48 PM
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I like that the mayor is planning in a broad manner. He is not just making bike paths but also bike lanes, for those who are comfortable with them, and most importantly public service announcements to educate the public about bicycle rights. Whether us seasoned cyclist like dedicated bike paths or not, they are often the first step for many people into the world of cycling which could possibly lead to street riding and commuting later.
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Old 08-26-10, 06:39 PM
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Never quibble with someone who's in a position of authority, who's suddenly on your side with a personal stake in the issue. No matter how he got there, he got there. Enjoy it, and work with him.

Remember Saul on the road to Damascus. It's amazing what a 'bolt from the blue' can accomplish.
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