Autonomous cars have a potentially fatal flaw: They struggle to detect and react to cyclists on the road. According to a January 2017 report by IEEE Spectrum, bicycles are generally considered "the most difficult detection problem that autonomous vehicle systems face." It's not surprising: Bikes are relatively small, nimble, and sometimes unpredictable, and human drivers have a hard time sharing the road with bike riders as well. In 2015, 818 cyclists died in collisions with motorists, and 45,000 experienced injuries in car-bike collisions. In 2016, the number of deaths rose to 835. Seventy-one percent of those happened in urban areas.
If you needed more proof that electric bicycles are a real trend, legacy motorcycle purveyor, Harley Davidson, has come to seal the deal. At an annual dealer's meeting, alternative transit blog, Electrek, reports that Harley Davidson has unveiled its electric bicycles more than a year after first teasing them. The company will sell three different models according to Electrek, including two that require riders to step over a center piece and one with a dropped middle piece that is easier to mount. Harley Davidson's electric bicycles were officially unveiled this week according to Electrek. 'Harley-Davidson's first electric pedal-assist bicycles are light, fast, and easy for anyone to ride' said the company in a statement.
You look like a circus bear." That's the kind of snarky assessment only one's own teenager can deliver, but it summed up my last time on an electric "mobility device," commuting to work on Autoblog's Urb-E scooter: Big guy, tiny vehicle, cue the circus music. Now, after loading a more-substantial Mylo electric scooter into my car for a week of testing, I've gotten stuck in traffic on the surface streets of Seattle, where things are backed up on a sunny summer Saturday because, hey, why should Saturday be different than every other day? Going nowhere fast, it's hard to resist the urge to unfold the Mylo, abandon the car where it sits, and make my escape from the circus we call modern life. The frustration with urban traffic, or rather the need for alternatives, is one reason why a wave of battery-electric conveyances are already on the market or headed our way, from the Bird and Lime scooters that are cluttering the streets of Southern California, to dozens of models of electric bicycles, to Vespas, right on up to electric Harleys.
Federal authorities raided the Bicycle Hotel and Casino in Bell Gardens on Tuesday morning as part of an ongoing investigation. Virginia Kice, spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Los Angeles, said in a statement authorities could not comment on "the scope or nature of the investigation." The raid was executed at the casino, 888 Bicycle Casino Drive, by members of the Los Angeles High Intensity Financial Crime Area Task Force, a group that includes ICE's Homeland Security Investigations; IRS Criminal Investigation; the California Department of Justice, Bureau of Gambling Control; and the U.S. Attorney's office, she said. The Bicycle Casino has had a long and colorful history in Bell Gardens. The federal government took over part ownership of the casino in 1991 after a jury found that $12 million of the $22 million used in its construction came from Florida drug smugglers.