Archive for August, 2018

AB-2989 motorized scooter bill

AB-2989, the motorized scooter bill, is still making its way through the legislature. The good news is that it removes the silly helmet requirement. The bad news is that it retains speed limit prohibitions:

The operator of a motorized scooter shall not operate a motorized scooter on a highway with a speed limit in excess of 25 miles per hour unless the motorized scooter is operated within a Class II or Class IV bikeway.

There are a lot of 30 mph streets where it is safe to operate a scooter, even where there are no bike facilities. While the bill does give cities the option to make exceptions to this rule, how likely is that given the reactionary policies we’ve seen from places like Santa Monica? Alternatively, lawmakers might have permitted sidewalk riding on fast arterials, but the bill outlaws sidewalk riding in all cases. Scooter riders will no doubt ignore these legal requirements — which perpetuates the stereotype of them being inconsiderate lawbreakers.


If a scooter rider were struck by a car here, the driver would not be at fault.



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Ultra-liberal Berkeley cancelled its Telegraph/Shattuck BRT project. Silicon Valley cancelled its El Camino Real BRT project. Meanwhile in the deep-red state of Utah:

Utah Valley Express, or UVX for short, is a bus rapid transit (BRT) line similar to TRAX that features articulated buses that will reduce travel times by using exclusive bus lanes and traffic signal priority. Additionally, the line will feature station amenities such as real-time electronic displays showing vehicle locations, level boarding platforms and high-end shelters. The line will connect FrontRunner with major Utah Valley destinations such as universities, employment centers, shopping malls, entertainment and downtown Provo and Orem.

Half the route miles are on dedicated ROW, with 6-15 minute headways. The transit system has ambitious plans to eventually construct 200 miles of BRT. Rides will be free for the first 3 years of service.




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This video like something out of a Hollywood movie. A bus driver hauling school kids goes flying up Mount Diablo Rd like a bat out of hell, crossing the double yellow line dozens of times, going around blind corners and running cyclists off the road. Will the Park finally take seriously the safety concerns of cyclists?

The good news is that the videos grabbed the attention of state Sen. Steve Glazer, D-Orinda, and Assemblywoman Catharine Baker, R-Dublin, who have called for meetings to discuss vehicular safety on the mountain.

“These videos clearly show unsafe conditions for cyclists and bus riders,” Glazer wrote. “These are unacceptable circumstances and the parks department and highway patrol must give this matter urgent attention.”

State parks spokeswoman Gloria Sandoval admits “there is a public safety issue.” The bad news is that the person who should be leading the charge, park Superintendent Ryen Goering, generally dismisses the concerns. As he has with past safety issues, Goering drags his feet, resisting change.

The Mount Diablo Cyclists wants 40′ buses banned from the narrow park roads, and more work to improve road safety around the blind corners.

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