Monday, January 31, 2011

Rahm Emanuel Plans To Take Chicago To The Top Of The Bicycle Food Chain

Last spring, Bicycling Magazine ranked Chicago the 10th best city in the U.S. for bicycling.  10th!  That stinks.  We can do better than that and apparently Chicago's mayor-to-be, Rahm Emanuel, thinks so as well.  Yesterday, he announced his vision for the future of the city's cycling infrastructure.  Noting that Chicago, "Continues to lag far behind may large cities," he plans to see to it that our bike lane network is the best in the U.S., including making Chicago "a pioneer in the creation and expansion of protected bike lanes."  Portland, Minneapolis, watch your backs, and don't be surprised if you find dead fish in your mailboxes.  Here is a link Rahm Emanuel's plan for expanding Chicago's bicycle network.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Photograph Released of Bicyclist Struck and Left For Dead On Chicago's South Side

There's been no word yet on whether Chicago police have successfully located a tank truck sought in connection with the hit-and-run death of a bicyclist on the city's South Side last week.  Presumably, the search for the driver that struck 65 year old Robert Felice then left him laying in the road next to his mangled bike continues.  Over the weekend a person who was close to Mr. Felice sent me a photograph of the man know locally as the "Florida Fisherman."

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Chicago Police Searching For Tanker Truck Which May Have Been Involved In Hit and Run Death of Bicyclist

Chicago police are looking for a "semi truck with a tanker and red extended cab" that may have been involved in an incident on the South Side that left a bicyclist dead on Monday night, the apparent victim of a hit-and-run.  The Chicago Sun-Times reports that the truck was last seen speeding eastbound on Pershing Road at around the time the man was struck.  The victim, Robert Felice, 65, was found lying dead in the eastbound lanes "with a heavily damaged bicycle" in the 300 block of West Pershing Road by a city snowplow driver.

If you have any information regarding this matter please contact the Chicago Police Department or the city's 311 non-emergency line.

Update (1:55 p.m.):  Mr. Felice was know locally as "The Florida Fisherman," having resided in Florida with his mother before moving to the Bridgeport area.  He is survived by two sons, Robert, Jr. and Anthony, who are , I'm told, as yet unaware of their father's death.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Chicago Bicyclist Left For Dead In Street After Apparent Hit-And-Run, CPD Investigating

Found by a snowplow driver, a bicyclist lay dead in the street this morning on the city's South Side, the apparent victim of a hit-and-run.  The man, probably in his 40s, was found in the 300 block of West Pershing Road.  The Chicago Police Department's Major Accident Investigation Unit is investigating.

Read more here.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Car Company Promotes "Share The Road" Message In Commercial

Getting the "Share The Road" message out to both motorists and bicyclists is vitally important.  The State of Illinois has deemed it important enough to issue specialty license plates containing the message.  Apparently, the message is gaining some traction; enough that even a car company is promoting it.  Check out this recent ad from KIA:

The commercial states that KIA started out as a bicycle company.  According to Wikipedia's entry for the company, "Kia was founded on June "9, 1944 as a manufacturer of steel tubing and bicycle parts by hand."

Thanks to Urban Velo for posting this video.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Chicago Bike Program Produces New Video To Promote Road Sharing

Bicyclists and motorists alike can benefit from viewing this new video produced by the Chicago Bike Program.  It provides a nice overview of how best to share the road.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

FSA Crank Sets Recalled

Yesterday, Health Canada announced the recall of certain FSA crank sets that came as original equipment on some models of Cannondale bicycles.  According to the Recall Notice, the FSA Gossamer BB30 crank sets have fixing bolts and crank arms on the non-drive side that can crack under certain conditions, "posing a fall or crash hazard to riders."  FSA "received 11 reports of incidents in the U.S., including 2 reports of injuries."

Click here to learn more and to contact FSA about obtaining a replacement.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Bicycle Helmet Phone A Bad Call

I generally do not recommend products on this blog; and I won't be with this post.  I just came across a cycling product that just strikes me as a horrible idea:  A helmet with a mobile phone built in.  While it is true that if you must talk on your phone while riding (you don't), that doing so hands-free is better than taking a hand off your bike, cycling -- at least in a heavily trafficked urban setting -- and talking on the phone is still a bad idea.  All of your senses must be alert while riding in the city, and talking on the phone or listening to music while pedaling will increase your chances of getting into an accident.  Here's an idea: if you need to make a call get off your bike.

New Efforts By Chicago To Make Roads Better For Bicyclists, Everybody

Chicago may be turning the corner regarding roadways designed and designated for only one kind of traffic, motor vehicles.  Over the years, city streets have gotten wider to accommodate more lanes to allow increased numbers of motor vehicles, according a piece by Jon Hilkevitch in the Chicago Tribune.  The idea, presumably, was to better travel times around Chicago.  However, the idea has backfired, the extra lanes producing, "at best, only short-term improvements in traffic flow due to the ever-increasing number of [motor] vehicles."   To reduce this trend, city officials are preparing "to launch the largest local experiment of its kind to slim down streets."  The latest effort will occur on Lawrence Avenue, between Western and Ashland Avenues, where traffic lanes will be reduced in each direction to create bike lanes and wider sidewalks.  The  project is to begin "as early as next year," pending receipt of funding, according to the Trib.

This sort of effort is to be applauded by bicyclists, pedestrians and motorists alike.  Reduced motor vehicle traffic makes bicycling safer, which will encourage more people to bike in the city, which means fewer cars and trucks on the road, which means less traffic over all.  Less traffic means. . . Ahhh, less stress, a more pleasant city, happier people.

Click here to read the full story.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Salsa Handlebar Stems Recalled

This morning Salsa Cycles and the U.S. Product Safety Commission announced the recall of Salsa after market handlebar stems.  Both threadless and quill stems, which sold for about $65 from April through October 2010, are the subject of the recall.  The Commission reports that the stems can crack or break, "posing a fall hazard to the rider."  Click here for more information.

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