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The Monday Roundup: Hit-and-run psychology, best bike for the city, BUI, and more

Posted by on August 27th, 2018 at 11:24 am

Welcome to the week.

Before we get started, a special shout-out from our sponsor Cycle Oregon is warranted. Their new Gravel ride is coming October 5th-7th and it’s sure to be a fantastic weekend of fully-supported unpaved adventures on some of the best backroads in the region. I checked out one of the routes recently and can’t wait to share a recap!

And with that, here are the most noteworthy things we came across on the Internet in the past seven days…

Scooter advocacy: The Willamette Week devoted an entire issue to Portland’s scooter revolution that included an article on how many bicycling and transportation reform advocates consider them an ally in shifting the status quo on our streets.

Real speed enforcement: While local media and PBOT wring their hands about scooter speeds, a police chief in the UK is doing something worthwhile: He wants a £100 fine levied against anyone who drives one mile over the speed limit.

“Bike lanes” no more?: The rise of scooters spurred transit consultant Jarrett Walker and Portland transportation activist Sarah Iannarone to consider renaming “bike lanes” to be more inclusive and descriptive.

Protection imperative: NYC activists are calling for a ring of protected lanes around Central Park after a woman was run over and killed by a truck driver after she tried to avoid a driver who was parked in the bike lane.

We told you so: Uber’s CEO has finally seen the light when it comes to personal transportation; telling a major international newspaper that, “It is very inefficient for a one-tonne hulk of metal to take one person 10 blocks.”

Why we run: In one study, nearly half of the people convicted of hit-and-runs said they did it out of sheer panic.

Bikes for the city: Venerable Treehugger blog author Lloyd Alter shared a useful breakdown of bicycle types and how each one fares as a “city bike”.

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E-demand: After doing something similar with scooters downtown a few weeks ago I can relate to this story in CityLab from a guy who searched for an e-assist Citibike. People love these things! We need to commit more resources to electric bike and scooter systems ASAP.

Tour winner, helmet loser: Tour de France champion Geraint Thomas accidentally stepped into the infamous helmet debate when he told an interviewer they should be mandatory for everyone.

Congestion pricing rules: Transportation policymakers and elected officials would be wise to heed this advice from The Economist on how to price driving trips.

Land-use and bike theft: An interesting study (from 2016) looked how land-use and environmental factors influences the rate of bike theft in London.

Don’t say it never happens: A woman riding her bicycle in Aspen ran into a parked car and was charged with BUI. Police say she was texting, had a half-empty beer can in her bottle cage, and failed a sobriety test.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. BikePortland is an inclusive company with no tolerance for discrimination or harassment including expressions of racism, sexism, homophobia, or xenophobia. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

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bikeninja
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bikeninja

One of the things that surprised me in the Willamette Week Article was in the section about each of the three companies doing trials in Portland. One of them ( Lime I think) stated that the average life span of one of their e-scooters was 4 months. If this is really the case ( and I feel this needs further investigation) these things are not the environmental boon some profess them to be. The amount of waste products and lost resources that would result from hundreds of thousands ( nation wide) of these plying the streets on 4 month birth-to-death cycles would be horrific.

Middle of The Road Guy
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Middle of The Road Guy

I suspect BUI happens much more frequently than people think.

Al
Guest
Al

The way Thomas answered that question reveals how little he has actually considered the issue. He’s not a politician. He’s not running a helmet advocacy group. He’s a pro rider who was asked a leading question.

But, to be fair to Thomas, his answer can also be understood in other ways as the interview apparently didn’t develop the subject (I haven’t seen the full interview or read the transcript). He could be answering the question as it pertains to him in racing. There was a time when helmets were not standardized and their use was not enforced. I vaguely remember a TdF which went into Belgium and the riders had to don helmets at the border because France had not yet required riders to do so.

B. Carfree
Guest
B. Carfree

I would be fine with requiring the companies that make and supply e-scooters to govern them to the speed limit if and only if we hold motor vehicle manufacturers to the same standard. It is technically feasible, and not even that difficult, to have cars govern themselves to the speed limit on the street they are on.

Imagine how many lives could be saved by this (probably over 20,000 per year, since excessive speed is a factor in most fatal crashes). If we don’t trust people operating a thirty-pound e-scooter to be reasonably safe, why do we trust people to do so with 5000 pound motor vehicles, especially when we have so much evidence that they don’t operate them at safe speeds?

ktaylor
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ktaylor

My god, those hit and run descriptions!! Beyond horrifying. Especially the woman who drove home with the guy embedded in her windshield and kept going back to her garage periodically asking him if he was ok until he bled to death three days later, at which point, she enlisted a friend to help drag him to the park and leave him there. Frustratingly, the reporter notes that hit and run accidents are on the rise and gives people’s reasons for fleeiing but offers no stats from past years for comparison to shed light on why this problem is getting worse. Did I miss something?

Jim Lee
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Jim Lee

Your own private bicycle can last 100 years.

John Liu
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John Liu

Who the heck is seriously advocating that bike lanes be shared with runners, skateboards, e-scooters, and dogs?

It must be the runners-skateboarders-e-scooter-and-dog lobby. Because I don’t know any cyclist who wants to be dodging dogs, skateboards, runners, or scooters in the bike lane.

Not in the real world anyway. Maybe in the ScooterPortland.org bubble the urban theorists think it would be a good thing.

matchupanckes
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matchupanckes

q
In fact, I wonder how many people bike because they’ve lost their driver’s licenses due to drunk driving? Or decide to bike home from drinking instead of driving? I’m not condoning drunk biking, but at least it’s less potentially harmful to others than drunk driving.And in this case, it could have been the texting that caused the crash, although drinking may have led to the decision to text.Recommended 1

In eastern Washington throughout the 1990s, people who had lost their drivers license to repeated DUIIs were the only ones you saw out on the roads at night on bicycles. I do too wonder at the numbers behind this reality and given the threat that a slow moving bike presents versus a partially-at-best-controlled 2,000+lbs. motor vehicle, we can agree that it is the far lesser of two evils however figurative one of the two might be.

David Hampsten
Guest

Land Use and Bike Theft: Super dense academic article, not for people with short attention spans.

Implications

The major policy implication of this research is that law enforcers and policymakers can focus on certain aspects of the physical environment to strategically prevent bicycle theft, given the well-known difficulty of solving this type of crime after it has occurred. With respect to the facilities directly associated with mobility, or to the linkage of different mobility systems, both train stations and bicycle parking stands have been shown to pose high risk for bicycle theft. Such places need to be evaluated, keeping the seasonal variation and the crime problem in surrounding areas in mind. Other amenities unrelated to mobility but nevertheless availing interaction and opportunities for bicycle theft also require security prioritization, such as universities, vacant houses and street-lining trees.

When considering where and how to prevent bicycle theft, the exposure to risk factors within the physical environment might have profound implications for developing strategic prevention mechanisms within small areas. These environmental factors might be more pertinent than the sociodemographic composition, which is usually quantified over larger and arbitrarily defined areas.

Correspondingly, ethnographic evidence has revealed that even in the census blocks with crime-aggravating socioeconomic influences, crime is not ubiquitous. Such an observation challenges us to look beyond areas that are contextually meaningful to identify factors that could influence crime, factors other than those conventionally measured along with area-based socioeconomic status.

Jim Lee
Guest
Jim Lee

Very nice days at SunRiver here, zipping along the beautifully paved paths between sessions of replacing nails in the deck with drive-screws.

Lovely trip to Benham Falls on Saturday. Cruised the River Loop on Monday: subtle morning sunlight through broken clouds; water, meadow, forest alive with color. Polite police patrolling on MTB.

Trusty steed was custom frame fixie with 32 mm slicks on 559 mm half-spoked crow’s-foot wheels, 42/16 gear with 1/8 chain. Modest track-skills very useful. That bike is a tiger on the twisty paths with short steep ups and downs. Must take care with dogs, kids, moms with strollers. Rode through the new tunnel at Circle 4: two smooth lanes straight through; all the infamous “walk-your-bike” culverts are to be replaced.

Two sessions in the new hot tub Monday night. Full moon. There is a head-rest in one corner so one can lean back to observe the stars.

Cheers!

David Hampsten
Guest

I don’t have the chutzpah either. I took the summary directly from the article.