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Bicyclists plan ride in downtown L.A. to protest 'unfair treatment'

The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition plans to hold a bike ride Wednesday afternoon to call for justice for victims of hit-and-run accidents and to protest what it says is unfair treatment of cyclists.

The ride is scheduled to start at 12:30 p.m. at Melrose Avenue and Heliotrope Drive in Hollywood and end at Los Angeles City Hall, where participants will attend a meeting of the City Council's transportation committee.

The ride will trace the route local cyclist Ed Magos used to take on his daily commute to City Hall, where he works in the information technology department. Magos was injured Jan. 6 when he was struck from behind while cycling on 2nd Street near Figueroa Street in downtown Los Angeles. 

The driver who struck Magos "stopped, got out of her car, looked at Ed’s prone and injured body lying in the street, and ignoring Magos’ cries for help, got back in her car and drove away -- leaving Magos lying helpless until the LAFD paramedics arrived to take him to Good Samaritan Hospital," coalition leaders said in a statement.

The motorist, who later went to an Los Angeles Police Department station, was not charged with a crime.

"I think that anyone can agree that when a person hits someone from behind and leaves the scene, it's a hit-and-run," said Aurisha Smolarski of the coalition. "We're seeing a large amount of hit-and-runs just being swept under the rug and disappearing."

An LAPD spokesman could not be reached for comment.

Magos was unable to attend the bike ride because he is still recovering from his injuries.  

-- Kate Linthicum

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Comments () | Archives (59)

Here are the rules of the road MOST bicyclists fail to respect:

• Must obey all traffic signals and
stop signs
• Must ride in the same direction
as other traffic, not against it.
• Shall ride as near to the right curb
or edge of the roadway as practi-
cal–not on the sidewalk.
• Should ride single file on a busy
or narrow street.
• Must make left and right turns
in the same way that drivers do,
using the same turn lanes. If the
bicyclist is traveling straight
ahead, he or she should use a
through traffic lane rather than
ride next to the curb and block
traffic making right turns.
• Must signal all their intentions
to motorists and bicyclists near
• Shall not operate a bicycle on a
roadway during darkness unless
the bicycle is equipped with:
- - A brake which will enable the
operator to make one braked
wheel skid on dry level, clean
- - A front lamp emitting a white
light visible from a distance of
300 feet.
- - A rear red reflector visible from
a distance of 500 feet.
- - A white or yellow reflector
on each pedal visible from a
distance of 200 feet.

Now I won't even try to defend the atrocicous driving habits of most car drivers but here's the difference: when a motorist breaks the law a car usually ends up damaged and maybe someone gets hurt. When a bicyclist breaks the law, the bicyclist frequently ends up dead.

So much for "share the road." It is not possible to educate the morons in cars. I have to drive and my car is a small, fuel-efficient model, but that just makes me vulnerable to the big tanks that think they own the road. Every day, they tailgate, change lanes without signaling, cut in front, run red lights (and amazingly in the city where I drive, the bicyclists go faster than the gridlocked cars in spite of their stupid manuevers).

It is going to take someone in goverment with a spine to make safe bikeways (and safe sidewalks) away from the murderous morons in cars. Prosecuting them after they kill someone doesn't impress me. I want to stay alive and in one piece!

Last week this maniac on a bike cut right in front of my car from a green light. I hit my brakes hard to give him some room and he started yelling the F-bomb at me so loud I could hear it clearly through my closed windows. Right in front of a group of young kids waiting for the bus. It was terrible. I am very conscious of sharing the road with bikes. Why can't these guys do the same?

And I thought we had civilized people in Los Angeles? Silly me.

1. "Get out of the way", really?
2. "Stop at stop signs", again, really?
3. "Own the road", I wish.

Point 1:
Most of my commuting is done on bike, I never see a bike holding up traffic. We want to stay out of harms way as much as possible. Trust me. Just because a driver wants to use the 'slow' lane as a passing lane doesn't mean we are blocking traffic. It means that driver is an ass and driving recklessly by passing on the 'right'.

Point 2:
Most stop signs I slow down, not at every one. Most cars slow down at stop signs but rarely come to a complete stop as the law requires. When was the last time you drove a car and stopped for 2 seconds? I guarantee I never do when I'm driving a car. Only when a pedestrian is crossing and I have to stop. You may actually think you have stopped but your car has merely slowed down. I see this when I am biking. I am guilty of the same on my bike, I slow down but I don't stop. So when cars start coming to complete stops, I'll come to a complete stop on my bike. Until then stop throwing stones (Reference to Bible).

Point 3:
We 'own the road' only because we have to. Try a bike for day and you will see what I mean.

Here are some tips:

1. Don't ride too close to cars, believe or not most people don't look when opening doors.
2. Don't ride the sidewalk, because peds don't like you going faster than them.
3. Stay to the right if you can cars will try to kill you.
4. Even though there is barely enough room for a car in the lane that you are riding in and you are riding to the right, a car will try to pass. If it gets too close get angry and thank god your alive.
5. Ride in the middle of the lane and ignore the car honking behind you, although there is a lane open to his left.
6. Watch out for cars using the right lane as a passing lane. They are the worse kinds of jerks. Of course as a driver, that's not you right?
7. Watch out for cars trying to send you a 'message'. That 'message' is never good.
8. Rememer, the car is bigger and heavier than you. You will lose. Give the 'important' driver all the space they need.
9. Enjoy being outside and feel the freedom of being on a bike. It's pretty amazing and may be worth the risk.

Car drivers:
Have we really inconvenienced you? If we get in an accident it's fatal. When you do, it's a fender bender. Please be careful.

As right-on as right-on gets.

Cyclists are a pain. All they do is whine and take over the roads and expect traffic to slow to a crawl as drivers try to figure out a way around them. I really hate the large groups that take over a whole street. They should be demanding more bike lanes. That way they don't get in the way of drivers. It is a win win.

Since "riders" have the same rights as motorists...THEN..
they must have the same rules as we have...

1) LICENSES in their possesion at all times! They must take "Drivers" written test..rules of the road for bikes

2) LICENSE PLATES on their bikes for ID!

3) INSURANCE - liability!

Hey, LAPD from the reading this article I have got to ask "Where is the Justice"
What is it, "No Rights for Bikes"

Same mentality as the bicyclists in Seattle. They just can't get it through their helmeted skulls that the laws of physics are universal, brutal, and unforgiving.

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