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Thursday, September 29 2016 @ 06:45 AM UTC
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Bike Maryland updates




Note: This is a casual ride - not an official One Less Car Event - a cue sheet will be provided but most of the riding will be on city streets.

On December 6th a group will leave David's house on 519 W. 40th Street to take a ride to the Fells Point Christmas Celebration. The departure time is 10:00 AM (giving the sun enough time to wake up) as long as the temperature at 9:00 AM is over 35 degrees and it is dry outside. If you are interested in riding please send an E-Mail to d.schapiro"at", There is no cost to ride for OLC members or to anyone who purchases a raffle ticket on the morning of the ride (available at the starting location).

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14-Year-Old Dies After Being Struck By SUV

Biking in the Metro AreaNo Word On If Driver Will Be Charged In Crash

MIDDLE RIVER, Md. -- A 14-year-old boy is dead after being struck by a sport utility vehicle on Friday evening.

Baltimore County Police said that Blaine Sunowitz was riding his bike when he was hit by a Dodge Dakota near the intersection of Martin Boulevard and Middle River Road.

Sunowitz was taken to Franklin Square Hospital for treatment where he later died.
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How the streets were made safe for cars!!

Biking ElsewhereOriginally Posted by MIT Press
Before the advent of the automobile, users of city streets were diverse and included children at play and pedestrians at large. By 1930, most streets were primarily motor thoroughfares where children did not belong and where pedestrians were condemned as "jaywalkers." In Fighting Traffic, Peter Norton argues that to accommodate automobiles, the American city required not only a physical change but also a social one: before the city could be reconstructed for the sake of motorists, its streets had to be socially reconstructed as places where motorists belonged. It was not an evolution, he writes, but a bloody and sometimes violent revolution.

Norton describes how street users struggled to define and redefine what streets were for. He examines developments in the crucial transitional years from the 1910s to the 1930s, uncovering a broad anti-automobile campaign that reviled motorists as "road hogs" or "speed demons" and cars as "juggernauts" or "death cars." He considers the perspectives of all users—pedestrians, police (who had to become "traffic cops"), street railways, downtown businesses, traffic engineers (who often saw cars as the problem, not the solution), and automobile promoters. He finds that pedestrians and parents campaigned in moral terms, fighting for "justice." Cities and downtown businesses tried to regulate traffic in the name of "efficiency." Automotive interest groups, meanwhile, legitimized their claim to the streets by invoking "freedom"—a rhetorical stance of particular power in the United States.

Fighting Traffic offers a new look at both the origins of the automotive city in America and how social groups shape technological change.
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Safety in Numbers.

Biking Elsewhereimage
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Pedal Power

Biking Elsewhere[I wounder if this can be done here.]

What and Why
The purpose of this action pamphlet is to encourage injured riders to create strong enforcement of bicyclist rights to the road in injury accidents by taking things into their own hands and using laws already on the books to charge and convict drivers in court for violation of the Rules of the Road.

In spite of the best of intentions law enforcement agencies do not have the resources or the legal understanding of laws relating to bicycles from a bicyclist perspective, to investigate and issue citations for traffic law violations in most injury accidents. For example, in Portland, Oregon's most populous city known for its friendly attitude toward bike riders, city police maintain a departmental policy of facilitating exchange of information between the parties to an accident, but not investigating or issuing citations in traffic accidents unless one of the parties is placed into the area hospital Trauma system or the driver has a warrant or a suspended license. The Trauma system only takes the most serious injuries; entry triggers a police investigation including witness accounts and a scene diagram. However many bicycle accidents involve high energy transfers and serious injuries; yet no police investigation is provided-often an unpleasant surprise to many healing bike riders who later find out that it is their word against the motorist when it comes time to make an insurance claim.

Police spokesmen have stated in the past that the Oregon statutes prohibit citation unless the cop witnesses commission of the offense. This is not technically correct because the law (ORS 810.410 (4) ) allows a police officer to issue a citation after an accident based on their own after the fact personal investigation. However, even if a police investigation of the accident is available, non-motorized roadway users may still not like the result because some police officers do not see these user groups as legitimate and rightful roadway users. This paternalistic attitude fails to accord full legal rights to the most vulnerable roadway users, those who because of their vulnerability (since they are not encased in sheet metal) most need vigilant protection of the law.

But, bicyclists must consider fully the high costs associated with more intensive traffic accident investigation by police. After all, the insurance adjuster/attorney system serve pretty well in sorting out who is at fault in most accidents. Police officers' primary mission is to protect public safety; in the great majority of collisions fault is clear and investigation of accidents is more appropriately performed by claim adjusters in insurance companies. Regardless of where one draws the line, there is a point after which it is just more important for a cop to be working on a criminal case than answering a radio call to conduct a traffic investigation for an intersection collision.

We Can Do It Ourselves
And, without requiring any change in law or policy, Oregon bicyclists already have the legal tools to initiate prosecution of traffic law breakers. Oregon law allows a citizen to initiate traffic violation prosecutions in state court, AND to have police help (per Oregon statute). After the initial report is taken and the citizen signs the Oregon Uniform Citation and Complaint, the completed paperwork is served on the bad driver summoning them to traffic court to face the charges in a non-jury trial in front of a traffic judge. The complaining citizen gives an informal presentation of the case, the judge hears evidence and testimony, and then decides. If convicted the bad driver receives a conviction and fine for a moving violation which is no different than one from a ticket issued by a police officer.

The process, known as a citizen "Initiation of Violation Proceeding " is important for bicyclists - we usually get banged up the most in a bike-car collision. Too many of these wrecks occur because drivers fail to yield to us or give us our legal share of the road. These drivers are among the most dangerous drivers on the road and it is important that their driving records reflect it. Also, Insurance adjusters frequently fail to give adequate recognition to bicyclist legal rights. Whether ignorant of the law or just hostile to bike riders, many insurance adjusters see a bike collision case and instinctively favor their insured motorist. Since only the most serious collisions involve law enforcement accident investigation, the bike rider who is hurt after a clear cut violation of the traffic law by a motorist is often disappointed to learn that the driver who was clearly admitting fault at the scene is now claiming that it was the bicyclist who violated the law. If the record contains a citation and traffic court conviction of the driver, then the insurance adjuster will be hard pressed to ignore the true liability picture.
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12 steps to get your bike commute started

Biking ElsewhereBy Jenny C. McCune •

Need some guidance to get started on your eco-friendly commute?

Biking to work
Follow these 12 steps to ensure a safe and comfortable ride to work.

Tips before getting started
1. Start off easy
2. Don't feel you have to go the distance
3. Figure out your route
4. Test it before you commute
5. Find a bike buddy
6. Learn the rules of the road for bicycles
7. Investigate parking
8. Devise a cleanup plan
9. Carry flat fix essentials
10. Learn emergency adjustments
11. Inspect your bike before every ride
12. Perform routine maintenance
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The next Secretary of Transportation may well be a cycling advocate.

PoliticsNames rumored to be on the short list include:

• Representative Jim Oberstar — A Minnesota Democrat and nationally-renowned member of the Congressional Bike Caucus. Representative Oberstar chairs the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.
• Representative Earl Blumenauer — A Democrat representing Portland, Oregon, Representative Blumenauer—another nationally renowned Congressional Bike Caucus member and founder of the Bike Caucus—sits on the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming.
• Representative Peter DeFazio — Another Oregon Democrat, and yet another member of the Congressional Bike Caucus, Representative DeFazio is a senior member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.
• Governor Ed Rendell — The Governor of Pennsylvania.
• Jane Garvey — The head of the Federal Aviation Administration from 1997 to 2002.
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Biking Elsewhere"Truly optimal traffic safety policies require changing the way we think about, evaluate and implement traffic safety. Transportation policies that stimulate increased driving are likely to increase traffic risk, while mobility management strategies that reduce total vehicle travel and encourage shifts to alternative modes are likely to increase traffic safety. The new paradigm greatly expands the range of traffic safety strategies, including improvements to alternative modes, pricing reforms, and smart growth land use policies. It also requires considering co-benefits, since mobility management strategies can also help solve other problems, such as traffic and parking congestion, pollution emissions, excessive consumer costs, inadequate mobility for non-drivers, and inadequate public fitness and health..."
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Biking Elsewhereby Mark Plotz - NCBW Program Manager

Yesterday, as I was searching for statistics on the websites of NHTSA, BTS, and FHWA for use in a CenterLines story, I came across the Secretary of Transportation's latest press release (<a href=""></a>;). The news is that Americans drove less in FY2008 and, as a result, the Highway Trust Fund revenue will come up at least $3 billion short in FY2008. For me this was fantastic news because this was irrefutable proof that the non driving public was directly subsidizing the driving public. Or, to put it in terms the Secretary could understand: Bridges don't fall down because bicycle paths are built; bicyclists' taxes are building and maintaining those bridges.

Before I prematurely gave thanks, I read on:
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Future Professional Development Webinars

Biking ElsewhereThe Professional Development Webinar Series is co-hosted by the National Center for Bicycling &amp; Walking, Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals, (APBP), and Cullbridge Communications.

Webinars in the Professional Development Series are scheduled for the third Wednesday of each month, from 3p.m. to 4p.m., Eastern Time.

Upcoming webinar topics and presenters include:

December 17th, 2008 – Bring Smart Trips Home: Linda Ginenthal, City of Portland, Oregon, and Jessica Roberts, Alta Planning + Design. Register now at this page: <a href=""></a>;

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Maryland should adopt the Idaho stop law.

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The state should support what kind of bicycle facilities?

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