News Archive 2010

London CM New Years Eve ride 2010. 

"I believe about 50 riders in total turned up. the ride was very unusual, but we got a very good reception from the people in the street. however, again many aggressive car drivers, an issue which needs to be addressed in the future.

Also lots of hustle from the cops and my tricycle was not allowed anywhere near Trafalgar Square, it turned out to be a nightmare at the end, as I was harassed by one specific police inspector.

Happy New Year"

At least one cyclist was deliberately rammed and injured by a motorist. Reports | 1 | 2 |.

Israeli Activist Jailed for CM Bike Protest.

"An Israeli activist was sentenced to three months in jail on Monday for his part in a 2008 protest by Tel Aviv cyclists opposed to the blockade of Gaza... Pollak was arrested by plain-clothes police who recognized him from previous protests and because, as claimed in court, they assumed he was the organizer and figurehead of the event.” ..." More. Video.

Royal Wedding to clash with London Critical Mass.

CM will be celebrating its 17th Anniversary during its customarily held monthly ride on 29th of April 2011. Because of the wedding, traffic congestion is likely to be more horrendous than usual.

Taxi driver to be prosecuted.

During the London CM June ride a taxi driver went berserk. Report.

Black Friday Critical Mass Meets Baton-Wielding Riot Police in Union Square.

"...All we wanted to do was cruise down Powell into the morass of Black Friday shoppers and see what was up, but NOOO. These guys had to blockade the whole neighborhood all geared up for war. God forbid anybody messes with commerce on the biggest shopping day of the year...". More.

London CM November 2010.

"...About 40 of us congregated around the statue outside Buck House and there was more circular cycling around the statue. Two armed police officers came out to ask for the sound system to be turned down. Apparently, the Queen prefers Beethoven. Take note!..." Report with pics. Map of route.

Citizens join bicycle campaign on pollution awareness.

"At least 700 citizens have joined Critical Mass Lahore, a cycling event, in a campaign against overwhelming influx of motor vehicles in the city, which has made the metropolis the most polluted city in Pakistan..." More.

London CM October 2010.

Not much dressing up for Halloween but a large ride though, despite the rain. Visited the financial district. Reports | 1 | 2 | Videos | 1 | 2 | 3 |

One arrest at Halloween Critical Mass - San Francisco

"Thousands of bikers took part in Halloween Critical Mass which started around 6 pm and went throughout the city. On Church Street near Market Street one man was arrested by San Francisco Police and his bike was put in the trunk of the police car he was taken away in." More.

'Critical Mass' bike ride ends in controversy in Long Beach

"There were only 100 cyclists on this ride but police apparently issued 70 citations and impounded 21 bikes in an odd attempt to stop the group from peacefully celebrating cycling and asserting cyclists' right to the road. One rider got a $500 dollar ticket for running a stop sign." More. | 1 | 2 |

CM wins $965,000 settlement against NYC.

"The 83 cyclists were among hundreds arrested or ticketed in the so-called Critical Mass rides between 2004 and 2006. The civil rights lawsuit against the New York Police Department was filed in 2007. Lawyers for both sides learned of the $965,000 on Monday. Plaintiff and riders' spokeswoman Barbara Ross calls the settlement a victory for all cyclists. More | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 |

Bicycle Politics workshop report

Centre for Mobilities Research, Lancaster University. There were participants from across the planet – South Africa, India, Australia, the US, Spain, Denmark, Ireland and Italy – as well as from across the UK. Report.

Curitiba, Brazil CM threatened with weapons.

"About 20 cyclers were threatened with heavy weapons and forced to abandon group pedalling." More.

LA CM ride September 2010.

"...Being that far behind, I saw a lot of riders being ticketed as I rode past. A couple of times, I would even see them handcuffed, facing away from the cops. When I asked the cops what they had done, they told me the riders ran red lights. After that I kept my eyes open for handcuffs and noticed that dozens of riders were being ticketed and about a third were wearing handcuffs..." More.

London CM September 2010

No reports yet. Video. Facebook.

Police Fine Cyclists At Critical Mass In Budapest

Note: this is an organised event and therefore not CM strictly speaking but it does have some similar aims.

"The Critical Mass event coincides with European Mobility Week, an awareness raising campaign which promotes the use of public transport, cycling and walking".

"At least 10,000 cyclists took part in the Critical Mass pro-bicycle event from Margit hd to Petfi hd along Budapest's Nagykt (Grand Boulevard) on Wednesday evening.

Police waiting at ten intersections were fining cyclists for having defective lights, organiser Gbor Krti complained to MTI" More.

Boston CM rider says police officer Pina pushed him

"...Kurland said he was traveling slowly in the bicycle lane, about 30 feet from the intersection, when Pina approached, grabbed the front of his bike, and pushed him to the ground, leaving Kurland with minor road rash.

Police issued Kurland a $20 ticket for operating to endanger..." Reports | 1 | 2 |.

Stockton CA police cause trouble for CM

"The scene was ridiculous. Several cop cars pulled in on the one person whom prepared for a scolding. Bystanders recorded as he got a ticket whereas others whom had their hands behind their heads were violently thrown to the ground, knees in their backs, were arrested. This just shows their boredom and abuse of power." More with videos.

London CM August 2010

A surpsingly large turnout considering it coincided with the start of a Bank Holiday. Roadworks in Central London contributed to a lot of congestion even though traffic numbers seemed smaller than usual. Hire bikes again provided a contribution to the ride. Usual confrontations with irate drivers who don't seem to realise that London CM is legally recognised as a procession. No problems with police this time it seems. Reports | 1 | 2 |. Video.

London CM July 2010

"It seemed bizarre, that as the BMW pushed into the wheel of the bicycle, police took the side of the motorist. I'm sure if it had been a police bicycle, a completely different scenario would have occurred. Some of the police seem to have taken an anti-cyclist stance". Reports | 1 | 2 | 3 |.

London CM June 2010.

"Things went stressful, when police vans surrounded the mass just by Herbal Hill; seconds before they arrived, a police van dropped a policeman who started running through the cyclists- when the police man ran out of stamina, he stopped and within seconds the 30 vans appeared." Reports | 1 | 2 |. Video.

Bike destroyed by rammer during London May ride

"I was rammed on my bike on the May 28th ride on Parliament Street (continuation of Whitehall) just after the Cenotaph heading towards Parliament Square at approx 20:57. The vehicle made off without stopping and has not reported the incident to the police..." More.

Edinburgh Critical Mass Attacked by Police

"Suddenly, the sound system rider was cuffed and violently arrested by four officers, with other riders quickly responding, but forced back by the first cop on the scene, who drew his baton and threatened the other riders, shouting aggressively. The other cops shoved the riders around, refused to let them communicate with the arrested rider, and eventually forced the riders out of the Meadows with threats of arrest and physical violence shouting things such as "disappear". They also stole the soundsystem, trailer and bike." More with pics. Video.

The Bicycle Music Festival

"Just a note to thank all those Massers who turned up the the Bicycle Music Festival there were a lot of familiar faces and it turned into great event.". Pics. Website.

Hollywood Critical Mass riders assaulted by cops.

Riders were attacked with batons, pushed off their bikes and rammed by squad cars, They were then bruitalised handcuffed and then cited for small infractions such as no lights or not obeying traffic laws. Reports | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |.

London CM May 2010.

Probably more than 500 turnout. Good weather. One arrest. Several rammings. Cheered and high-fived by tourists and others. Visited the Democracy Village in Parliament Square where it had a warm reception. Reports. Reports with pics | 1 | 2 |. Videos | 1 | 2 |.

International bike ride links communities in resistance

Merthyr to Mayo cyclists set off

Velorution writes: Today, a 50-strong international bike ride begins the 400 mile journey from a community resisting Britain's largest open cast coal mine in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales to County Mayo, Ireland, where local people have spent the last ten years fighting a Shell-led gas development. We aim to offer direct support to these two local campaigns resisting the fossil fuel industry. More.

Ride to Party at the pumps 2

The route taken was through Hyde Park and down Constitution Hill to the Mall and from there for a circuit of Parliament Square. Then along Whitehall and eventually making its way to the Angel and along Upper Street to the Shell Garage. The riders were greeted with a cheer and quickly merged with the partying. Pics and report. Video.

London CM April 2010.

16th Anniversayr ride with quite a large attendance. Critical Mass is often criticised for 'corking' and impatient drivers often attempt to nose into the Mass hazardously but the video shows a police car waiting patiently while being corked. Video.

City Pays $98,000 to Critical Mass Cyclists

"New York City agreed Tuesday to pay tens of thousands of dollars to five cyclists who filed a lawsuit saying they were harassed during the monthly cycling group-ride Critical Mass - including one man seen on videotape being shoved off his bicycle by an officer..." Reports | 1 | 2 | 3 | Videos | 1 | 2 | 3 |

London CM March 2010.

Some people joined CM in remembrance of three cyclists recently killed in London by HGVs. There were about 600 riders in all. Confrontation with abusive lorry driver. Reports. Reports with pics | 1 | 2 | Pics. Video.

Some bike blogs

ibikelondonBike TartLondon CyclistMoving Target ZineCycle ChicCyclodelicVeLo Citythe Bike Show podcast.

Why the Cops Will Not Shut Down Critical Mass

There are several reports that the Mayor of San Francisco and its poiice want to shut down Critical Mass. CM worldwide originated in SF.

"...they tried it before and it didn’t work. Mayor Willie Brown famously tried to stop the ride in 1997 and ended up blowing Critical Mass up to 5000-7000 riders, rather than the usual 1 or 2000. He backpedaled on that one pretty quick..." More | 1 | 2 | 3 |

"If you don't move over I'll run you over"

Sounds familiar? A motorist cop in Atlanta threatened CM riders and allegedly lightly rammed one of them. Report with videos.

London CM February 2010

Thanks to a gap in the bad weather turnout was pretty good for the time of year, maybe 200 or more? The corking was again excellent. Report. Pics | 1 | 2 | 3 |

BBC does hatchet job on cyclists

On its 'Inside Out London' programme of 22nd February London cyclists are roundly condemned by former Top Gear presenter Adrian Simpson for not obeying trafic laws. Ironically, one clip from the video that slipped through shows a cyclist and an HGV both going through the same red light at the same time. Anyway, he also took a critical glance at CM on its January ride. Video.

NY Judge Upholds Critical Mass Ruling

A judge ruled Tuesday that the city has the right to require 50 or more bicyclists to get permits before hitting the streets. This didn't just cover Critical Mass but bicycle clubs too!

"They've put something on the books that affects potentially hundreds of events every year - like historical bike tours, to say nothing of the small rides that take place during Bike Month." Reports | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 |

London CM January 2010

A BBC team were interviewing and filming at the start of the ride.

"It was quite soon that the group got divided due to some aggressive drivers, but the splinter soon rejoined near Westminster. That's when the bigger group went round the intersection a few times to give the chance to the "splinter" to rejoin. Once this happened, there was a joyful horn blowing, a cheer and soon after the joyful bike-lifts! hooray for bicycles! these critical mass cyclists always manage to put a smile on my face!"

Problems with taxi drivers and one motorist "went totally mental and decided to drive totally erratic and dangerous before targeting and driving back and forwards into people." A complaint has been made to the police.. Reports | 1 | 2 | Pics.

Man Acquitted in Critical Mass Sues Mpls

Augustin Ganely was acquitted, and is suing the city for civil rights violations. More | 1 | 2 |.

Archive 2009