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Wednesday, November 25 2015 @ 10:09 AM UTC
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Stop Violence Against Cyclists

Biking in BaltimoreBy Mi Letts

Every time the weather warms up in Baltimore, it is time for bicyclists to think about how to protect themselves from children banning together to beat, and steal from bicyclists. Since we have few protected routes or practical streets of passage, our choices of travel are limited-- making us fish in a barrel, prime targets for these groups. We want the city to become proactive in protecting the cyclists, rather than reactive. We want plain clothed bicycle police patroling to stem the tide of violence in the most problematic areas.

Sign the petition:
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Baltimore to fine parents $250 for double-parking at school drop-offs

Biking in BaltimoreBy Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun

"Baltimore City could make millions of dollars," she said. "People come up with all kinds of excuses, but they're just lazy. I'm surprised no one has gotten run over."

Hornbeck regularly includes messages in the school newsletter that emphasize "we want people to park their cars a couple blocks away and walk their kids to school," he said.
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Arizona among most strict on speeding and reckless driving

News you will not see in MarylandBy Barbara Grijalva, Tucson News Now

Arizona is the second toughest state in the nation when it comes to speeding and reckless driving penalties.

According to a new study by the personal finance website WalletHub, Arizona is also the 9th toughest when it comes to considering speeding a form of reckless driving.

Arizona also ranks among the top 10 states for fines and jail time for reckless driving.

"... It was $367, so it wasn't a cheap ticket."

[B' Spokes: In contrast in Arizona speed cameras in schools zones can issue you a ticket if you are going 6 mph over the speed limit vs. Maryland's 12 mph over the limit and Maryland's fine is only $40. It is also interesting to note in Maryland it is really hard to get a reckless driving charge, speeding is just speeding even if in a school zone with children present and doing twice the speed limit.]
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How real estate lawyer Jon Laria became an unlikely leader for Baltimore's bicyclists

Biking in BaltimoreBy Kevin Litten, Baltimore Business Journal

Laria also makes an intriguing choice because he understands the consequences of not implementing the bike infrastructure called for. He called the master bike plan "really not a luxury, but an imperative — a must," and warned that if there isn't "real progress," people will begin to believe the plan will never become a reality.

"We need visible changes soon. We need to earn credibility. A year from now things have to look different," Laria said. "There needs to be a visible manifestation of this commitment, or people are not going to take it seriously."
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Harvard Study: Better Police Reports On Bike Crashes Could Save Lives

Biking Elsewhere"Cities, towns, planners and private businesses can’t move forward building safer cars and safer bike environments until they learn more precisely how bike accidents happen. Is a truck’s wide turn to blame? A taxi door opening at the wrong time? These seemingly small details of crashes are critical, says Anne Lusk, a research scientist in the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health."


"After studying hundreds of hopelessly low-tech police reports used to record bike accidents, Lusk and her colleagues are making a nationwide plea: They’re calling on police in all states to step into the modern era and improve reports on crashes involving vehicles and bicycles. Currently, Lusk said in an interview, the details on crashes are handwritten and drawn by police on paper, with few bicycle-specific codes or diagrams."
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A Maryland road widening will be more costly than the transit it replaces

Biking in MarylandBy Ben Ross, Greater Greater Washington

Maryland governor Larry Hogan wants to build roads with money saved from cancelling the Baltimore Red Line and cutting back the Purple Line. The governor says the two light rail lines cost too much. But his marquee highway project, a wider Route 404 on the Eastern Shore, looks to be far less cost-effective than either.
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Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: I would also add Glympse to this list to let others see your location as you ride. The interface is a bit quirky and you have to search for "Copy to clipboard" if you want just the link to share via some thing other then a text message but it works and gives my family some peace of mind when I go out for a bike ride. Or it helps to see when I might arrive back home or some meeting place.]
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Truck driver fined after close call with bike police in Glen Burnie

Biking in the Metro AreaBy Tim Pratt, Capital Gazette

The truck eventually continued past the rest of the group, Cooke said, and the driver shouted obscenities out the window. The truck was about an arm's length away from officers as it passed.

"It was something I've never experienced before in full uniform," Cooke said.

Police obtained the truck's license plate number and charged the driver, Frank Worthington, 66, of Cecil County, with more than a half dozen traffic offenses.

On Monday, District Court Judge Laura Robinson fined Worthington $1,000 for reckless driving and ordered him to complete 16 hours of community service.

Anne Arundel State's Attorney Wes Adams said he hopes the case will teach Worthington to follow the rules of the road and draw attention to the law that motorists must give cyclists at least three feet of space when passing.
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To The Police Chief Who Said 7-year-olds Should Not Be Alone, Especially in a Park

Biking ElsewhereVia Free Range Kids

About a week ago, you may recall, a Maine mom was charged with child endangerment for letting her 7 year old play by herself for an hour in the park visible from the family’s porch. This is a letter by a Free-Ranger to the Police Chief there, who defended the summons as well as the fact the girl was taken by cruiser to the precinct, instead of back across the street to her home. It’s everything a letter should be, and everything our country should be, too: Smart, sane, and unwilling to buy into child safety hysteria.

"What was the particular and specific danger that prompted law enforcement action?”

So, absent a verified and demonstrable hazard, the rationale for police action would seemingly have to fall to, in essence, “something bad could have happened.” This is an empty argument, and folly of high order. Something could “happen” anywhere. But, following that logic for a moment, law enforcement might take notice that, statistically, the most dangerous place for a child to be in the United States is riding in a car. Would it make sense, then, to pull people over and cite them for endangering their child passengers? The logic applied in this case would demand that you do. After all, children actually DO die in cars – thousands of them.
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Biking ElsewhereBy Cian Ginty

COMMENT & ANALYSIS: Media figures painting all “cyclists” as criminals is like an incitement to hatred which polarises some motorists. This clearly does not add to road safety. It should not be tolerated by any right-thinking person, regardless of what mode of transport they happen to use.

The idea that only “bad” cyclists are in danger is nonsense. A polarised motorist stuck behind the best-behaved bicycle users on a narrow road or street, or while making a right hand turn etc, will not distinguish between law breaking and law abiding bicycle users.

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Maryland should adopt the Idaho stop law.

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