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The Monday Roundup: Behind the lines, say “pannier”, climate crisis framing, and more

Posted by on May 20th, 2019 at 9:03 am

Welcome to the week. Lots to get to. But first: We must know our history.

This week’s edition is sponsored by Rack Attack, where you go to figure out what bike rack is right for your car.

Behind the lines: Don’t miss the latest War on Cars episode where co-host Aaron Naparstek infiltrates the New York Auto Show to bring you all the absurdities and ironies of peak car culture.

Dirty tricks: The Oregonian reported that the University of Oregon and Oregon Health & Science University help bankroll a group that is trying to kill Governor Kate Brown’s climate change bill.

Language matters: Excellent decision from The Guardian to start using more direct and accurate language on vital environmental topics.

Dooring prevention: Uber is trying decrease the amount of dooring incidents their drivers and passengers cause with in-app notifications and driver training.

Ride of Silence: There was no such ride in Portland this year, but that didn’t stop Vancouverites from hosting the memorial ride that aims to raise awareness of riders who have been killed.

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Tesla mess: Not sure what’s more galling to me about these NTSB findings: the fact that Tesla uses humans as guinea pigs; there’s seems to be no federal safety oversight of this shit; or that the “autopilot” mode allowed the car to go over the posted speed limit.

Self police: Leader of a free-market think tank — and 50-year bicycle commuter — penned an editorial in The New York Daily News saying that bicycle riders should welcome more enforcement of cycling traffic laws.

MTBs and trail damage: This piece from Adventure Journal explains how bicycles have less impact on properly built singletrack trails than you might think (required reading for many Portlanders who don’t understand this simple concept).

Cross-country low-stress: What if you could ride cross-country on carfree rail-trails? That’s the vision behind the Great America Rail Trail, a 3,700 vision launched by the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy last week.

Slow cars, fast food: Burger King says they will roll out delivery to hungry people stuck in traffic jams.

Video of the Week: Check out Path Less Pedaled’s latest video about the roots and correct pronunciation of the word “pannier”:

— 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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Hello, Kittymark smithJohnny Bye CarterGlenn IIEl Biciclero Recent comment authors
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Kittens
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Kittens

Skip to 12:45 to hear him says the word “Pannier”

bikeninja
Guest
bikeninja

Instead of delivering burgers to the windows of traffic bound motorists how about we do the planet a favor and just turn the highways in to housing. Then those who insist in sitting in living room on wheels to get to work can just reserve a space on the highway near where they work and stay in their stationary “living room on wheels” during the off hours of the work week and have food delivered to their roll up window. Then on friday they can hop on a train or folding bike or something and head out to their cabin in the burbs. Think of the time and gas we would save in addition to giving income opportunities to cyclists in the food delivery business and provide very safe side lanes for travel not menaced by speeding traffic.

Hello, Kitty
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Hello, Kitty

I agree — they should be required to show their system is no more dangerous than a human driver.

Al
Guest
Al

While I agree that Tesla should not be allowed to beta test their products on not just their customers who presumably signed off on a lot of end user agreements that they pretended to read but the rest of us as well, I’m here to make the point that trucks should have side panels on their trailers which extend down to the road surface. This would have prevented both Tesla accidents as the problem is that Tesla’s sensors didn’t see the trailers due to the empty space underneath. Such side skirts also prevent cyclists from getting sucked under the rear wheels of the trailer.

Trailers used to not have Mansfield bars, and when the law went into effect, early bars used to be just for show offering very little protection. We need another Mansfield bar type political effort to get trailer side skirts implemented.

Jon
Guest
Jon

The Tesla system is basically a slightly more advanced adaptive cruise control with automatic braking. I have seen the system in use in a Tesla. Just like like any other automatic braking system it is not perfect but it is much safer than un-assisted driving. See this Consumer Reports article: https://www.consumerreports.org/automotive-technology/automatic-braking-reduces-car-crashes-injuries-iihs-study/
USA Today also had an article that explains a bit why they are not perfect: https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2018/05/29/tesla-uber-crashes-spotlight-automatic-emergency-braking-what-can-do/639261002/
Personally I would like to see a lot more automated traffic enforcement. I don’t see why there are not 1000’s of speed cameras all over the state but giving Tesla grief over a system that is statistically safer not of much use. The headlines love to trumpet accidents like this for the “man bites dog” or bicyclist kills pedestrian but in reality it is just highlighting a fringe case.

David Hampsten
Guest

I thought every city did a Ride of Silence. Even super conservative Greensboro NC did one on Wednesday evening, with over 150 participants including all 12 bike police (and several more on motorcycles and in cars blocking traffic.) To hear the Portland didn’t do one is kinda shocking.

David Hampsten
Guest

Who knew that bike bags were over 800 years old? News to me.

mh
Subscriber

I’m so torn – I’ve been saying it the correct French way because I’m compulsive. I don’t speak French; can I justify it? Is it an affectation? That one guy was right – just avoid it.

bikeninja
Guest
bikeninja

Teslas self driving danger does not bother me. It seems to represent a sort of Automotive Darwinism that will winnow out the ranks of the vain and gullible before they use up too many resources needed by the rest of us.

BikeSlobPDX
Subscriber
BikeSlobPDX

Well they should never have called it an “autopilot”. But what’s more troubling to me is the thing was speeding. I’ve been hoping that automating cars would cut down on aggressive driving.

Stephen Keller
Guest
Stephen Keller

Actually, any semi-autonomous vehicle on the road today should require a guy in a white lab coat on donkey riding 20 to 30 yards ahead of said vehicle, blaring a klaxon as a warning to all road users, and especially those more vulnerable, to steer clear of an involuntary social experiment in progress.

mh
Subscriber

Anyone all the way through the War on Cars podcast to catch the sponsor callout to Charlie Gee? Thank you!

B. Carfree
Subscriber
B. Carfree

The autopilot thing reminds me of something. Whatever it’s called (lane keeper, lane assist, auto pilot), the features in these new cars pose a problem for cyclists who don’t take the lane. You might ride near the fog line, thinking it’s fine for an overtaking motorist to do a partial lane change to safely pass you. That may have worked fine in the past, but newer cars can actually steer the car right back into you. It assumes the driver has drifted over the center line and “corrects” at just the wrong time.

Lanes are binary. They are either wide enough for a motorist to safely pass while fully in the lane or they aren’t. (I’m counting the shoulder here, though one is not required to do so.)

Rivelo
Guest

Another great Russ Roca video. For me, though, the central mystery regarding “pan-yurs” is NOT how to pronounce the word, but WHY so many commuters ride around with only ONE of them?!?!?

Once you load more than a pound of stuff in one of those Off-Side Hangers, it requires significant “correction,” either consciously or unconsciously, to ride a balanced bicycle.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BjqPbU2hwTH/

I’ll take a front mounted basket and a bag any day. Keeps my cargo evenly center-mounted, and away from the Spinning Wheel of Road Grime, high and dry.

Friend and customer, Isaac, shows how it’s done:

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bf__yvQAOoR/

Rivelo
Guest

Completely AGREE about backpacks, Al!

My commute bike weighs in somewhere close to yours, I’m pretty sure. Here’s my set-up:

https://www.instagram.com/p/BSEEUshA1Kb/

mark smith
Guest
mark smith

Hello, Kitty
“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”Regarding the auto show “infiltration”, it sounds like War on Cars is still in the ignore phase, but it’s an interesting listen.Recommended 1

I guess when one is secretly in love with the car, then one might feel that way.