state

World Remembrance Day This Sunday Nov 18th

From The BCU:

Sunday is World Day of Remembrance. Will you join the Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition in honoring victims of traffic crashes?

World Day of Remembrance
Sunday, Nov. 18 // 2:00 – 3:30 p.m.
Learn more + RSVP

The day will begin with a ghost bike ceremony at 12:30 pm, followed by a vigil and silent march from the State House to City Hall to demand swifter action to prevent traffic deaths.

We know you are angry and sad about recent fatalities on our streets. So are we. These kinds of tragedies are avoidable with better, proactive planning and policy. Stand with us to show that life-saving infrastructure improvements cannot wait.

While Boston has made some progress toward reducing injurious crashes, change has not come quickly enough. In 2017, there were 1,162 cyclist and pedestrian incidents that prompted an EMS response — or more than 3 per day. Meanwhile, Boston’s bike fatality rate continues to be higher than the rates in comparable cities. (It’s one reason Boston fell this year to #20 in Bicycling Magazine’s ranking of the best bike cities in America.)

Friday’s fatal crash, in which a dump truck driver hit and killed BU graduate student Meng Jin as he biked near the Museum of Science, serves as another devastating reminder of the dangers posed by deadly street design. (A ghost bike ceremony will be held on Sunday before the rally and demonstration; for more information and to RSVP head here.)

Meng Jin Ghost Bike Ceremony
Sunday, Nov 18 // 12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
Intersection of Charles River Dam & Museum Way
Learn more + RSVP

On Sunday, members of the Coalition will be placing silhouettes at crash sites throughout the Boston area, as well as statewide, as part of the #CrashNotAccident awareness campaign. Crashes are not accidents — they’re the tragic, preventable results of inadequate planning and policy. People make mistakes; our streets must be designed so those mistakes are not fatal. Please join us to ensure that these lives are not forgotten and to demand safe streets for all in our communities.

Take part in the following memorial actions:

12:30 pm – Meng Jin Ghost Bike Ceremony at Charles River Dam & Museum Way
1:45 pm – Gather on the steps of Massachusetts State House for a Memorial Vigil
2:00 pm – Program for Memorial Vigil begins
2:45 pm – Silent Walk of Remembrance to Boston City Hall Plaza to demand safer roads
3:30 pm – Event ends

Please dress warmly and wear yellow in remembrance of those we’ve lost to traffic crashes.

We also encourage you to invite your elected state and local representatives. Show them the human toll of dangerous street design and urge them to support Vision Zero. You can find your city legislators here, and your state legislators here.

Help us spread the word via social media by using the following hashtags before and during the event: #WDoR2018 #CrashNotAccident #SafetyOverSpeed #VisionZero

The vast majority of these traffic crashes are preventable through engineering, education and enforcement. In numbers, we can recognize our loved ones, and also demand action from our elected officials.

We hope to see you there on Sunday, November 18th.

The post World Day of Remembrance, Sunday Nov. 18 appeared first on Boston Cyclists Union.

Another preventable tragedy and ACTIONS you can take to help

From Cambridge Bike Safety:

Last Friday we lost a member of our community. Meng Jin was killed while biking on the Craigie Bridge near the Museum of Science. He was a grad student at Boston University studying economics and had just arrived in Cambridge two months ago to start school. We cannot imagine the pain and grief his family is now going through. Our hearts go out to them.

MassDOT and DCR were told a long time ago that this bridge badly needs bicycle infrastructure, something which is obvious to anyone who tries to commute across it. They promised to work on it after the Longfellow bridge project completed earlier this year, but it never happened. Meng is dead because MassDOT and DCR prioritized six lanes of motor vehicle traffic over safe bike infrastructure.

While we can’t bring him back, we can tell our governments that this isunacceptable and that these deaths are preventable. While the Craigie Bridge is under DCR jurisdiction, Cambridge has control over most of the roads leading up to the Craigie Bridge and a responsibility to keep people safe on them. Furthermore, the O’Brien Highway is identified as requiring protected bicycle lanes in the Cambridge Bike Plan, and Cambridge must work to build out its plan for 20 miles of protected bike lanes—including proactively engaging with state agencies—to prevent future injuries and deaths.

ACTIONS

1. Attend the World Day of Remembrance this Sunday, Nov 18 at 2pm at the Massachusetts State House, and Ghost Bike Ceremony at 12:30pm near Museum of Science. 

We will gather to mourn the people who have died on our roads this year and to tell our elected officials that protected bike lanes save lives. We will not accept any more heartless trade-offs in our streets.

Please tell everyone you know about this, including your elected officials, both local and state. We need a huge turnout to show our elected officials that many people care deeply about this, and that their decisions affect the lives of many people. Please attend this event if at all possible.

Earlier that day there is a ghost bike ceremony in memory of Meng Jin. Meet us at 12:30pm at the intersection of Charles River Dam Road and Museum way, near the Museum of Science where Meng Jin was killed. After the ceremony we will ride to the World Day of Remembrance event at the State House.

2. Email Cambridge officials council@cambridgema.gov,ldepasquale@cambridgema.gov and cc clerk@cambridgema.gov andinfo@cambridgebikesafety.org and tell them:

  • We want them to stand with us at the World Day of Remembrance so that they can hear the stories of people who are closest to the pain and learn from them.
  • We want them to support rapidly building out the city’s own plan for 20 miles of protected bike lanes because protected bike lanes save lives.

3. Email your state representatives (find them here) and tell them:

  • We want them to stand with us at the World Day of Remembrance. Their support is crucial for making changes happen at the state level.
  • If the State House acts quickly there is a chance they can pass the piece of the bike omnibus bill which requires state and state-contracted trucks to have safety side-guards and convex mirrors. Tell your state representative that they should help pass this bill to keep us safe around trucks. (Only the State House can help here; the State Senate has already passed this bill.)

Every death leaves our community hurting and scared. We will work together to make sure our streets show compassion instead of violence.

Boston City Councilors Support Protected Lanes on Longfellow

From U-Hub:

City Councilors Michelle Wu (at large) and Josh Zakim (Beacon Hill, Back Bay, Fenway, Mission Hill) will ask other councilors to join them tomorrow in urging the state to use barriers to protect bicyclists when the revamped Longfellow Bridge finally opens later this month.

At the regular council meeting, the two will formally ask other councilors to agree to a resolution calling on MassDOT to take one of the vehicle lanes on the inbound side and convert it to bicycle use, with something separating the cars and trucks from the bicyclists.

In their formal request, the two say the traffic disaster predicted when the state began shutting parts of the bridge five years ago never materialized, and that more people now commute by bicycle than when construction began. Also:

The incline on the first half of the inbound side of the bridge makes it particularly challenging to accommodate cyclists of varying abilities without a lane wide enough to facilitate passing.

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Take Action! Support Safe Streets Legislation

From livable streets:

Next Wednesday, February 7th is the deadline for legislative committees to act on bills, and An Act to Reduce Traffic Fatalities remains in front of the Joint Committee on Transportation.

Will you help us make Massachusetts streets safer for all? The Committee needs to hear from you!

LivableStreets and the Massachusetts Vision Zero Coalition have been working closely with Senator Brownsberger and Representatives Hecht and Rogers to develop a comprehensive traffic safety bill that will prevent crashes and protect vulnerable road users. Act now and help us enact these street safety measures into law!

It’s easy, just follow these three simple steps:

1. Find out if your legislators are co-sponsors of the bill.

2. Send an email to the Massachusetts Joint Committee on Transportation and your state legislators (see template email provided below). Emails should be sent to the committee chairs, copying your Representative and Senator, by Thursday, February 1st.

3. Make sure to copy info@visionzerocoalition.org on your email.

About the Bill
An Act to Reduce Traffic Fatalities (S1905/H2877) will ensure basic, but necessary traffic regulations to guarantee that everyone on our streets can expect to get from point A to point B safely. The bill’s provisions that the Vision Zero Coalition believes will make the biggest difference to the safety of people walking and biking are:

  • Lowering default speed limit on state highways and parkways in thickly settled areas from 30 mph to 25 mph
  • Allowing municipalities to install limited traffic safety cameras exclusively for speeding and red light & right turn violations
  • Equipping state contracted trucks with safety side-guards to reduce pedestrian & bicyclist fatalities
  • Prohibits usage of mobile devices, except those in hands-free mode, while operating a motor vehicle
  • Vulnerable road user language

What’s Next?
If the bill is reported favorably by this committee, it will be sent on to the House or Senate Ways and Means Committee. If it is reported unfavorable or “studied,” it would essentially be dead for the remainder of this legislative session.


EMAIL INSTRUCTIONS AND SAMPLE TEXT

To: Joseph.Boncore@masenate.gov, William.Straus@mahouse.gov

CC: Your State Senator and Representative (if you don’t know who they are, click here); info@visionzerocoalition.org

Recommended email subject: Support of An Act to reduce traffic fatalities S1905/H2877

Sample email text:

Dear Senator Boncore, Representative Straus, and members of the Joint Committee on Transportation,

I am writing to urge a favorable report for An Act to reduce traffic fatalities, (S1905 – Brownsberger, H2877 – Hecht and Rogers).

Serious injury and deaths from traffic crashes continue with troubling frequency on our streets. An Act to reduce traffic fatalities S1905/H2877 is a comprehensive piece of legislation which aims to create safer streets for all users, including bicyclists, pedestrians, and passengers of motor vehicles.

Tell your own story here. Why is this bill important to you?

Thanks again for your consideration, and I urge a favorable report for this bill.

full name
street address
city/town, state, zip
phone:
email:

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