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Boy, the Internet is full of criticism these days over how the SFPD and the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office have been handling the cyclist Chris Bucchere vs. pedestrian Sutchi Hui case.
And yet, what have they done wrong so far? Nothing that I can see.
Wisely, they aren’t trying to prove things that are tough to prove to the very high standard required, so stuff like who used Chris Bucchere’s online accounts to post his post-accident thoughts and what color what traffic light was when – that stuff, isn’t going to matter all that much if a criminal trial comes.
So that’s fine.
But there’s this:
““We have a witness that puts him blowing stop signs and lights on Divisadero Street,” the captain added.”
But the part of Divisadero that’s in the area doesn’t actually have stop signs.*
Check it out on the YouTube. The beginning part of this video, The Strava “Castro Street Bomb” (aka Castro Street Descent) shows the southern terminus of Divisadero.
As you can see, there aren’t any stop signs there.
But maybe the captain was talking about Castro Street?
If that’s the case, the question then becomes what would motivate a cyclist to behave in the ways alleged.
But we’ll find out soon enough…
*And the other part of Divisadero up in Pacific Heights far to the north? Wow, that’s probably the last place in the world where you’d want to be blowing stop signs on a bike.
Well, you make the call:
Of course you can conclude, at this early date, exactly this:
“Strava is not responsible for Chris’ actions…”
(That one comes from one of Chris Bucchere’s cycling buddies, BTW.)
Or, of course, you can conclude that Strava is totally responsible for the recent collision in the Castro.
Or you can be like me and remain unsure of the connection between the death of pedestrian Sutchi Hui and Strava.
“as a STRAVA user, my first thought when I saw that he was using STRAVA was that he was trying to post the best time on a segment (STRAVA’s social aspect includes public leaderboards, which is actually kind of fun). looks like that stretch of Castro is, indeed, a marked segment, which is absolutely fucking stupid and likely encouraged in some small way his reckless behavior.”
And there’s this:
And then there’s this:
And here’s some more, from Alan of Scarlet Fire, on gamification and Strava in general:
“Strava ‘s biggest strength lies within the ingenious “segments” feature.
Upload a gpx track of your completed ride, and Strava analyses the data with all the usual stats you’d expect, plus a breakdown of specific segments of the ride, eg hill climbs.
Here’s the clever bit -
It knows who else has completed those segments, and ranks everybody according to time. The fastest gets a KOM, King of the mountain achievement. (Yes, girls, you get QOM’s).
Most people wouldn’t bother to go to the trouble of timing themselves on individual climbs within their ride. Way too much hassle! Strava does it automatically, and awards you an achievement when you beat your personal best (PB).
If a section of your route doesn’t already appear as a segment, no problem – simply define it as a new segment and see how you rank. The premium version of the service also allows you to break the table down by age range and weight ranges.
Recently, whilst out on a ride, I was aware that a friend had been the first to log a new segment for a particular climb (there aren’t that many Strava users in North Wales yet!) and had the KOM award. Instead of going at my usual pace, the gaming instinct kicked in, and I found myself visiting a very high heart rate zone, and putting in a lot of effort. Later, when I uploaded my GPS data to Strava it was hugely satisfying to realise that I had beaten his time by almost 2 minutes and claimed the KOM. He also got an email from Strava saying I’d beaten his time. Nice.
Silly and childish? Very, I know.
Did it feel good? Hell, yes..
Did I get a better workout? Definitely.
Will I work harder on future climbs because this technology will let me know automatically whenever I set a new PB on specific climbs? Very likely.”
Here’s the latest regarding the Castro District’s international news:
“Expect Strava to get subpoenaed if this tragic story of reckless cycling and a pedestrian death goes to court.”
And here’s the Strava.Com segment what used to be called the Castro Street Bomb (and then the Castro Street Descent). It’s not too exciting. Rather sedate, actually. But I’m sure if you’re hauling butt to become the latest Strava.Com “KOM” (King of the Mountain) and you may or may not be “Idaho Rolling” through red lights, then it could be very exciting / addicting:
Strava still has lots of downhill “bomb” segments listed about town of course. How about the Hyde Street Bomb or the 20th Street Bomb?
What if I started a Market Street Drag Race website for car drivers? They could make a segment like “Second Street to Sixth Street Drag” or something and people could keep track of their times using the GPS. Would you say that I was encouraging recklessness? Or not?
And here’s part of the “Strava Kills” topic at the MTBR.Com forums:
“Unfortunately, there is no simple way for the biking community to pass on the message of “we are really sorry for your loss, please don’t judge all bikers. this particular individual is an a-hole, please stick it to him in every way possible”.
Sad thing is, even as this story makes it’s way around the cycling community, there are people that pull the same **** — running reds/stop signs/etc. from SF down to SCruz — that won’t connect this situation with possibilities around their own actions.”
And I’d link you to what they’re saying at the SF Fixed.Com boards but I don’t know how to do that. (It’s a bit contentious over there these days, I understand.)
And this just in:
“The light turned red as I was cruising through the middle of the intersection and then, almost instantly, the southern crosswalk on Market and Castro filled up with people coming from both directions.
So it looks as if cyclist Chris Bucchere didn’t run a red light.
Now, what about the law?
“21456. Whenever a pedestrian control signal showing the words “WALK” or “WAIT” or “DON’T WALK” or other approved symbol is in place, the signal shall indicate as follows:
(a) “WALK” or approved “Walking Person” symbol. A pedestrian facing the signal may proceed across the roadway in the direction of the signal, but shall yield the right-of-way to vehicles lawfully within the intersection at the time that signal is first shown….”
What this is saying is that pedestrians in California need to let traffic clear an intersection before walking when the WALK turns on for them.
(Most pedestrians in San Francisco don’t seem to know this….)
You know, the way it had something to do with a death in Berkeley back in 2009?
Do you see the “Castro Street Descent” there? Up until March 29, 2012, that said Castro Street Bomb. Like when you go “bombing” down the street.
I don’t know, Strava.
Care to say anything about this?
See how that works? You want to warn your fellow riders that there are cops handing out speeding tickets on Highway 37 (aka Sears Point Road) up there in the Great White North, so all you have to do is to tap your head in an exaggerated fashion when you see others going the opposite way.
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What’s this? People rappell down the Grand Hyatt Union Square? People do.
Those people who raise enough cash for the Special Olympics Northern California do, anyway.
This could be you:
If you’re into this, it’s not too late to get in on the fun.
Here you go. He was heading from City Hall to District 3 yesterday AM.
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He certainly doesn’t need that Trek electric bike as he typically moves along at a good clip without assistance.
Supervisor David Chiu, your working class dog betwixt an old-time streetcar and the Ferry Building: