"If you need a sign to tell people to slow down, you designed your street wrong." Going from "Forgiving Highways" to "Self-Explaining Roads": A longitudinal look at the Dutch and American responses to motor vehicle traffic safety. [more inside]
On Sunday 27 July, history will be made when a group of professional cyclists rides the Champs-Elysées. Among the riders who have never before been allowed in the Tour de France, is an athlete The Guardian has called "the finest cyclist of their generation" and who Bicycling Magazine recently touted as one "who could be the most naturally gifted, hardest-working cyclist who ever lived", Marianne Vos. Also riding will be writer, filmmaker, former figure skater and triathlete Kathryn Bertine. Triathlete and marathoner Emma Pooley described her expectation for the event: "On a scale of one to 10, I'd say that La Course is 11 on the excitement levels." Along with the athlete who holds/held all three Ironman world and championship records (including the overall world record), Chrissie Wellington, they created the campaign Le Tour Entier, whose motto is Liberté, Égalité, Cyclisme, a play on the French national motto. [more inside]
Slate: "Prius Repellent is a perfect introduction to one of the Obama era’s great conservative subcultures: the men and women who “roll coal.” For as little as $500, anyone with a diesel truck and a dream can install a smoke stack and the equipment that lets a driver “trick the engine” into needing more fuel. The result is a burst of black smoke that doubles as a political or cultural statement—a protest against the EPA, a ritual shaming of hybrid “rice burners,” and a stellar source of truck memes." [more inside]
Strava, the bike and run tracking system, is using their database to create Strava Metro, to sell to urban planners for commute data. But unless you're the Oregon DoT, London, or Alpine Shire, you might find the Strava bike and run heatmaps more useful. [more inside]
Gamera II is the University of Maryland's Human-Powered Helicopter. So far it has remained aloft for 65.1 seconds and reached an altitude of 9.4 feet, not quite enough to win the AHS Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter competition. [more inside]
Your Sweet Justice story for the day: In February, K.C. was riding her bike home from work. While waiting at a stop light, she felt a slight bump from the car behind her, followed by laughter from within. K.C. wasn't looking for a fight, and did her best to ignore this. Disappointed with his failure to elicit a response, the driver bumped her again, this time a bit harder. This is when K.C. pulled out her police badge, and things started to get weird...
Late last night, a cyclist was killed in Toronto. "Ontario's former attorney general Michael Bryant ... will be charged with criminal negligence causing death and dangerous driving causing death, a police source tells the Globe, after a collision left a 33-year-old cyclist dead." Accounts vary, but the sequence appears to be 1) Some collision and argument between the cyclist and the driver; 2) The cyclist grabs the driver's door and hangs on (or he may have been caught on the car accidentally) while the Saab convertible drives on; 3) The car drives into the opposite lane, across a construction zone, and the cyclist is battered against mailboxes and light posts; 4) The cyclist falls under the car's back wheels and is killed. [more inside]
Another one bites the dust, and Canada's largest city reaches its yearly average cyclist fatality tally, less than half-way through 2008. While Toronto is a moderately bike friendly place, its 2001 plan to join up 1074km of city bikeways within 10 years seems to have fallen flat (as have the city coroner's cycling safety recommendations). Could this be the first opportunity for the newborn Toronto Cyclists' Union to make a mark? Will a Canadian city ever join the world's best? Ah well, let's just go for a ride. In Quebec. [more inside]
Nearly 700 cyclists are killed on U.S. roads every year, and more than 540,000 are sent to the emergency room. The annual Ride of Silence was started in 2003 to honor and raise awareness for those tragically killed and injured on the road, and has grown into a worldwide event, with more than 270 confirmed rides planned to start tonight, at 7 p.m. Ride along on YouTube or grab a black armband and join a group near you. [Previously on MeFi]
Lance Armstrong - Le Tour de France It is that time of the year again T-Minus 8 Hours until the kick off of the Greatest Cycling Event in the World.....2004 Le Tour De France. Lance Armstrong is the Favored again to Win his 6TH Title in a row! In order to watch, listen and follow the race check out: Lance's official Fan club website or Le Tour's Official Daily Posting and Standing, lastly those of you who will need their daily fix without a computer Daily Results can be sent to your wireless phone via text messages. This will be a very exciting time from July 3 to July 25, one prologue and 20 stages and will cover a total distance of 3,390 kilometers or 2,106.5 miles. Go Lance.....Wear Yellow Live Strong!
"I promote using a bicycle instead of a motor vehicle because doing so is kind to the environment, good for the body, and good for the psyche." Ken Kifer, the author of the above statement and much other excellent advice will no longer be updating his lauded web page. Ken was killed while cycling last saturday night by a drunk driver who had been released from jail only 4 hours earlier. The suspect had been incarcerated for a separate drunk driving incident.