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Saturday, August 19 2017 @ 06:29 PM UTC
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Can You See Me Now!? Winning the Fight for Visibility.

Biking ElsewhereBy Chris Carmichael, CEO/Head Coach of CTS

[B' Spokes: Just the headlines:]
How High Vis Falls Short
How to Stay Safe
FOLLOW TRAFFIC LAWS
RIDE WHERE OTHERS RIDE
MAKE EYE CONTACT
WATCH THE WHEELS
FIND YOUR VOICE
RESIST THE URGE TO GET ANGRY
MAKE YOURSELF VISIBLE

http://trainright.com/cycling-visibility
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The Rich Drive Differently, a Study Suggests

Biking ElsewhereBy Benjamin Preston, New York Times

...
Now scientific research supports the unwritten and broadly circulated theory that people in BMWs are lacking in road manners. Paul K. Piff, a researcher at the Institute of Personality and Social Research at the University of California, Berkeley, has conducted a study linking bad driving habits with wealth.
...

https://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/08/12/the-rich-drive-differently-a-study-suggests/
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The Today Show Completely Botched Its Coverage of America’s Pedestrian Safety Crisis

Biking ElsewhereBy Angie Schmitt, Streets Blog

...
A new report from the Governors Highway Safety Association estimates that nationwide, there were nearly 6,000 pedestrian deaths in 2016. That’s a 25 percent increase since 2010 and the highest number in two decades.

That was enough to get news outlets like the Today Show to pay attention to pedestrian safety for once. But the Today segment was a victim-blaming disaster, writes Joseph Cutrufo at Mobilizing the Region:

If you ask the Today Show, it’s distracted pedestrians who are to blame, a point they illustrated by showing a video clip of a person being struck by a driver while standing on the sidewalk. The whole segment seems utterly ridiculous, but then again, in a country where more than 90 percent of households own at least one vehicle and more than three-quarters of commuters drive to work, maybe the Today Show’s audience is actually buying it.
...

We’ll never make progress on pedestrian fatalities if so many streets look like the highway where Sanders stands at the beginning of his report. We need streets where motor vehicles travel at non-lethal speeds and people can cross without taking their lives in their hands.

We should be asking why the United States is doing so much worse than other nations on traffic safety:
...

In the United Kingdom, not only are the streets much safer than in America, but the pedestrian death rate is falling even faster than the overall traffic fatality rate. In other words, British streets are getting safer for walking and driving, but especially for walking.

So instead of another segment blaming people on foot for their own deaths, how about a trip to the UK to investigate how they made a transportation system that’s so much safer than ours?
...

http://usa.streetsblog.org/2017/03/31/the-today-show-completely-botched-its-coverage-of-americas-pedestrian-safety-crisis/
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Why America’s roads are so much more dangerous than Europe's

Biking Elsewhereby Norman Garrick, Carol Atkinson-Palombo, and Hamed Ahangari, Vox

...
Even before that spike upward, per capital traffic fatalities in the US were already the highest in the industrialized world. No other developed country tolerates the level of carnage on their roads that we do. This national failure has been overlooked for far too long. Studying short-term variations in our safety record is important, but it can also distract us from investigating the forces contributing to our horrendous safety record compared to our peers.
...
In other words, since 1970 we have gone from leading the pack in traffic safety to being at the rear of that pack.
...

[B'Spokes: And they even get a little analytical as to why America road fatalities are so high.]

https://www.vox.com/the-big-idea/2016/11/30/13784520/roads-deaths-increase-safety-traffic-us
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Houston Police Set Up Stings To Catch Drivers Who Endanger Cyclists

News you will not see in MarylandBy Stephen Paulsen, Houston Press

Six bike riders have been killed in the Houston area so far this year, according to advocacy group BikeHouston, but the Houston Police Department is now setting up regular stings for drivers who endanger cyclists.

In March, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo announced he'd start going after drivers who pass bikes without the minimum three feet of space, using plainclothes bike cops equipped with a high-tech "C3FT" device. It's part of a push by a number of local politicians, including Mayor Sylvester Turner and Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg, to make Houston safer for cyclists.
...

http://www.houstonpress.com/news/houston-police-enforce-bike-passing-ordinance-9426696
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Large Vehicle Urban Driving Safety Program

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: I found several aspects of this Vision Zero Large Vehicle safety video interesting.:
1) It was NOT done by the MVA but by San Francisco's MTA and their contractors are required to watch the video.
2) It shows a lot of bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure you don't see here.
3) It explains why a lot of bike/ped enhancements work as well as what to do when driving and parking around them. Imagine that, a official source that tells trucks not to park in bike lanes. But be real if people are not told how to use something new are they supposed to know? And yes I well insult a lot of road engineers, these new designs are all that obvious to a car centric audience (most of the people driving.)

I will strongly assert that for many people roads are for cars to go fast on and there needs to be a lot of education that goes out to explain why slowing down is a good thing and how to share road space with cyclists and pedestrians. This video is a great start, now to see stuff like this happen in Maryland.]

Main page: https://www.sfmta.com/projects-planning/projects/large-vehicle-urban-driving-safety-program
Video: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCDc-thAeHe1idBKvsZCoOKQ
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HOW CYCLING & WALKING TO WORK AFFECTS HEALTH

Health & Environment-> Yes! Magazine reports on the largest ever study into how cycling and walking to work affects your health. (Association Between Active Commuting and Incident Cardiovascular Disease, Cancer, and Mortality: Prospective Cohort Study: http://bit.ly/2p7tDRv) Published in the British Medical Journal, the results for cycling in particular have important implications. They suggest that councils and governments need to make it a top priority to encourage as many commuters to get on their bikes as possible. Researchers looked at 263,450 people with an average age of 53 who were either in paid employment or self-employed, and didn’t always work at home. Participants were asked whether they usually traveled to work by car, public transport, walking, cycling or a combination. They followed participants for about 5 years. They found that cycling to work was associated with a 41 percent lower risk of dying overall compared to commuting by car or public transport. Cycle commuters had a 52 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease and a 40 percent lower risk of dying from cancer. They also had 46 percent lower risk of developing heart disease and a 45 percent lower risk of developing cancer at all. Walking to work was not associated with a lower risk of dying from all causes. Walkers did, however, have a 27 percent lower risk of heart disease and a 36 percent lower risk of dying from it. http://bit.ly/2qENWFV

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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GETTING KIDS MOVING NOW SAVES BILLIONS LATER

Health & Environment-> Education Week reports fewer than 1 in 3 American children get enough exercise every week. If they don't get more active, more than 8 million will be obese by their 18th birthdays—and their health care and lost productivity as adults could cost the country close to $3 trillion, finds a new study in the journal Health Affairs. (Modeling The Economic And Health Impact Of Increasing Children’s Physical Activity In The United States: http://bit.ly/2pVwhfY) Researchers found fewer than 32 percent of children ages 8 to 11 get at least 25 minutes of strong physical activity at least three times a week. Using a computer simulation of all children in that age group nationwide, the researchers found that increasing the percentage of children who exercise regularly to 50 percent would cut the adult obesity rate and save nearly $22 billion in medical costs and lost productivity over their lifetimes. Getting at least 3 out of 4 kids active would save more than $40 billion. http://bit.ly/2pVvgEB


from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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OUTDATED HEADLIGHTS PUT DRIVERS & PEDS AT RISK

Biking Elsewhere-> USA Today reports about 2,500 pedestrians are killed at night every year crossing the road, in many cases because drivers can't see them because their headlights don't shine brightly enough. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety concluded last year, that two-thirds of lighting packages available on 21 small SUV models deliver “poor” performance. In addition, 10 mid-size cars' and 7 pickup truck headlight systems were deemed as poor. Outdated federal rules have blocked automakers from introducing adaptive beam headlamps that automatically adjust to oncoming traffic to reduce glare and help drivers see better, even though the technology is legal and available in Europe and Japan. At the same time, sleek styling and manufacturing mistakes on currently available systems has led to poor performance on the road, including excessive glare and insufficient light on the pavement. https://usat.ly/2qE5iCP

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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The myth of the beleaguered Boston driver

Biking ElsewhereBy Dante Ramos, Boston Globe

IF YOU’RE DRIVING in a crowded city, it’s your job not to hit anybody. Not cyclists, not pedestrians, not even pedestrians wearing headphones.
...

The problem isn’t that Walsh thinks pedestrians and cyclists should pay attention to their surroundings. (Shouldn’t everybody?) It’s that, in his comments, the mayor seemed to accept the myth of the beleaguered Boston driver who’s at the mercy of unpredictable bikers and walkers.

When a car hits a bike in the Netherlands and some other countries, laws generally presume that the person driving the two- or three-ton metal box is responsible. Here in Boston, we’ve all internalized the idea that driving is how human beings naturally get around, and that everything else in city life — our transportation plans, our development rules, our circadian rhythms — must bend to accommodate it.
...

In practice, though, the city’s bicycle lanes are regularly blocked by delivery trucks, passenger vehicles, and even police cars. All too often, city government still sends this message: Real people use cars; all that other stuff — the bike lanes, the climate planning, the official paeans to transit-oriented development — is OK only if doesn’t bother drivers.
...

It’s easy to blame crazy cyclists or headphoned jaywalkers for getting hit by cars, but the victims are often children and elderly people. Calls for personal responsibility also mask the underlying issue: Many streets and intersections in Boston aren’t properly designed for the mix of people using them.
...

The other possibility is that, when throngs of transit commuters pour out of South Station every morning and jaywalk across the street, they’re sending a message of their own: We’re focusing too closely on the needs of motor vehicles, and not enough on all the people around them.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2017/05/20/the-myth-beleaguered-boston-driver/LEpqqu6VVeVUDnh2gybNzJ/story.html
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