The Monday Roundup: Road rage shooting, Amtrak’s bike upgrade and more

The Monday Roundup: Road rage shooting, Amtrak’s bike upgrade and more

Site of an extreme road-rage incident.
(Image by Google Street View)

Here are the bike links from around the world that caught our eyes this week:

Worst road rage ever: After a man on a bike confronted a man in a car who he felt had buzzed him, the man in the car allegedly pulled a semiautomatic handgun on him and opened fire as he drove away. Yes, this was in Florida.

Bikes on trains: Amtrak is testing a new baggage car that can secure unboxed bicycles.

Freeways’ failure: It seems like it ought to work: when a road becomes congested, add more lanes. Sadly, this works exactly as well as a Soviet bread line. Wired debunks our intuition and spells out the actual way to fight congestion: tolls.

San Diego’s big leap: In the last year, San Diego added 39 lane-miles of buffered bike lanes. (For comparison, Portland has less than 8 miles citywide.)

Gas tax jobs: The Oregon Department of Transportation estimates that a failure to find new federal transportation revenue before the Highway Trust Fund goes broke in August would cost the state 4,700 jobs related to road construction.

Gas tax hike? The first bipartisan proposal to raise gas taxes and index them to inflation has been introduced in the Senate with support from Rob Corker, R-Tenn.

Egyptian advocacy: Instead of taxing gas, Egypt subsidizes it. That’s why its president has begun urging more Egyptians to bike, to save the country money.

Walkability ranking: A new report from Smart Growth America ranks the Portland area as the country’s 7th most walkable. Why not higher? Our suburbs are still deeply car-dependent, the report says. DC ranks first because of its success on this count.

Harbor skyway: It’s apparently a year and a half behind schedule, but Copenhagen’s $6.6 million, 235-meter long, 4-meter-high elevated harbor bikeway is about to open.

Helmet ruling: Germany’s Supreme Court has ruled that bike users injured in crashes can’t be held partly responsible if they weren’t wearing helmets. (Also, it’s nice to see that Portland-designed Nutcases are helping Germans look stylish when they do choose to helmet up.)

Helmet “alarmist”: Transportation blog Systemic Failure looks at the background of one of the scientists behind a deceptively presented new helmet study and concludes that he deserves the title “crackpot.”

Women’s biking hurdles: Data-news site FiveThirtyEight reviews the research about why women tend to bike less than men. Safety and appearance play roles; so does the need to carry children.

Drunk driving: 37 percent of Americans who drink alcohol admit to having driven when they shouldn’t have.

The strangest thing about your video of the week may be that this car was apparently allowed to be there. (Thankfully, the person on the bike was only “slightly injured.”)

If you come across a noteworthy bicycle story, send it in via email, Tweet @bikeportland, or whatever else and we’ll consider adding it to next Monday’s roundup.

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