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Mayor Villaraigosa breaks elbow in bicycle accident

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa broke his elbow in a bicycle accident Saturday evening, a spokesman said.

The mayor was riding in the bicycle lane on Venice Boulevard in Mid-City at about 6:50 p.m. when a taxi abruptly pulled in front of him. The mayor hit his brakes and fell off the bike.

He was transported to Ronald Reagan/UCLA Medical Center, where he was treated for the broken bone.

By 10 p.m. he had been released and was resting comfortably at Getty House, the mayor's official residence.

The mayor's accident comes as bicyclists in the city have increasingly been complaining about safety issues and pressing city officials to do more to make cycling safe.

Bicycle advocates have called for more dedicated bike lanes and appeared repeatedly before the City Council to argue that a specific share of funds from Measure R, the 2008 sales tax for transportation projects, should be set aside for bicycle- and pedestrian-related initiatives.

Bicycle activist Stephen Box filled out paperwork last week to run for City Council in the district represented by Councilman Tom LaBonge that includes Hollywood, Koreatown and North Hollywood. Box, who was run off the road by a bus while cycling on Sunset Boulevard several years ago, said Venice Boulevard already has bike lanes but needs considerably more attention from city officials.

"Venice Boulevard is notorious for having all of the trash cans block the bike lanes. Venice Boulevard is notorious for having motor homes block the bike lanes. And Venice Boulevard is notorious for having fast traffic that uses the bike lane to squeeze through even when bicyclists are in the bike lane," he said.

Police Chief Charlie Beck has made overtures to bicyclists, promising to make their safety a bigger priority and sending some of his officers to ride in the monthly Critical Mass bicycle ride in June. The LAPD issued a directive instructing officers that a motorist can be held responsible for causing a bicycle accident even if he or she did not make direct contact with the rider -- and can be arrested for fleeing the scene, Box said.

-- Andrew Blankstein and David Zahniser

Comments () | Archives (135)

L.A. needs more segregated bike paths. I'm very pro-bicycle, but I agree with the people who say that cars and bikes should not be sharing the roads.

"It's not fair that motorists have to share the road with bicyclists. Bicyclists are a hazard and obstruction to traffic. They belong on the sidewalks, not on the streets. Besides, bicyclists have this attitude that the rules of the road don't apply to them. Many bicyclists are ghetto people and outlaws no different from the anarchists who rioted after the cop who killed Oscar Grant was convicted on lesser charges."

This is typical of the bike haters. Free passage on public roads by vehicles (bikes are VEHICLES) is an enduring right and the law says you have to respect and pass safely slower traffic.

Bikes are traffic, plain and simple. They have a RIGHT to be on the road. Contrary to the belief of a few people who don't know the law, driving is a privilege and going 45 mph in a private car is not some kind of right.

And please stop with the "scofflaw cyclists" thing. Whining about cyclists breaking laws is just bike hate, it's never brought up in good faith. Most cyclists are good road users if only for their own safety, don't lump them in with the cyclists who don't ride safely. Besides, motorists bend and break the laws all the time, nobody seems to cite "scofflaw motorists." Breaking a traffic law on a bike has FAR LESS CONSEQUENCES then breaking the same laws in a car, let's be appropriate and proportional with our outrage here.

This too funny. Lol.

Or car drivers can understand that the bikes they share the road with have ALL of the same rights they do and are contributing more to society than a car driver. Just because you have the ability to crush someone with four wheels and a temper doesn't mean you stop respecting the people on the road who ever right to be there, and deserve to be there more than most drivers anyway.

Yeah.... you need to be careful when your riding those paleta carts.

this happens when one pats himself on the back

Hey.. I found a picture of the bike he was riding when he was hit (See URL Below).


He was probably in a big rush to go to a latino event to protect illegals and boycott Arizona, rather than working for us taxpayers

How come they did not take him to county general then he could wait twelve hours while all the illeagals with anchor babys get treated first.Then he would really see the true effects of illeagal immigration.Too bad the car did not drag his ass to Tijuana county Hospital Because at the rate were going thats what will happen ask the city of maywood if his vision of illegal immigration will work.I guess I'm glad he did not get killed

Antonio Freeloader Raigosa, what a guy!!

Please, Please, Please. Make Fountain Ave. a bike free street. Something awful is just waiting to happen.

A mayor accused of being a an elitist abuser of perks gets out there to see how some of his constituents experience the city and all you nogoodniks can do is come up with some easy snarky remarks?

Bicyclists, for the most part, are rude and demanding as far as their perceived rights on the roadways. When they number more than two on the road, they are a hazard and imposition to traffic flow, creating dangerous conditions and inciting road rage.

What gives these jerks the right to travel in herds of ten to twenty cycles, hoarding the streets, running red lights and ignoring stop signs and signals. Villaraigosa was probably riding without any concern for the rights of those in motor vehicles and got what anyone else would who ignores the rules.

Bicyclists should be forbade from the local streets and issued permits for leisure riding in areas specifically designated for their use, such as the bike paths. Get them off of the streets.

Cars run stoplights, cars interfere with other cars turning, cars cannot pass another car on the same lane, cars contribute to global warming, cars use 1-3% of their energy for moving a person, cars are responsible for most road deaths, cars promote stress buildup, cars weigh over 4,000 lbs and help make potholes, cars cause noise pollution, cars economy causes spills like BP's in the Gulf of Mexico, cars' gas money help fund the Iraqi IEDs that kill so many US troops, dependence on cars promotes drunk driving, and cars take up too much space for parking.

The argument is stronger that we should kick the motorists off of our roads.

He failed the bar exam 8 times; and now he can't ride a bicycle. At least he can score with TV reporters.

Really, only 3 hours to be Xrayed, casted and sent on his way after visiting an Emergency Room. Set aside a VIP room so nobody bothers them. Then make them wait there time the same as the people who dont get access to the VIP room. Its called triage, not who is better known or has the most money.

All you chronic complaining cry babies just love to hate. You`re probably a bunch of fat self hating slobs leading a miserable existence.

How IRONICALLY wonderful!!
"lil Tony" promised to improve the bike lanes AND the LAPD-bicyclist relations.. and like EVERYTHING else he promised, exactly NOTHING has been done.. just the opposite, in fact, seeing as the LAPD thought nothing about trying to kick a passing bicyclist OFF his bike on Hollywood Blvd, in full media view, 2 weeks ago.
So, if he crashed avoiding any one of our So-skillful drivers here, it sounds like Karma Delivered to me.

and this is news worthy,because why? Too bad he didn't break his peepee,since he thinks with that more than his p-nut brain. I hope Corina got a nice settlement! I loathe this guy and I don't even live in LA. He'll probably sue the Taxi driver and the cab mfg. Go away antonio!!!

Hey Stubby, bikes have a very real and fundamental right to the road. In fact they can take the right lane if the road is too narrow to allow a car to give them three feet to pass. It's pretty taken for granted that motorists have to respect slower traffic, including cyclists. Just pass them safely, most streets in L.A. have enough room to allow for this.

The vast vast majority of motorists understand this. Most of us have friends who ride bikes, too. It's jerks like you who don't know the laws or have any sense of basic decency that make the roads dangerous for everyone. Of course it's these same know-nothings who most likely to tap their keyboards whenever a bike-related story comes up.

"Villaraigosa was probably riding without any concern for the rights of those in motor vehicles and got what anyone else would who ignores the rules."

Yeah, how would you know? Were you there?

I ride this stretch of road all the time and it's mostly safe. Hopefully this will lead the city to provide more dedicated lanes to bicyclists. It's obvious this is a positive and relatively cheap way to reduce traffic, encourage a healthier populous and have a few less cars polluting the air out here.

I'd like to find the cab driver and shake his hand

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (nee Vilar) fell when he suddenly realized that California Penal Code section 834b is almost identical to Arizona's law and now he must boycott California.

Too bad it was not his melon.

That what he deserves for making Los Angeles a sanctuary city, yet I still hope he recovers nicely, I just don't appreciate his encouraging illegas in America, but you must understand he is Latino so he will take up for his people. On the other hand I am a 3-generation born American, taxpaer nand I am sympathetic to my countrymen too.

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