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ThatsMyBarack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-16-07 09:27 PM
Original message
Bicycles: Share the Road!
When you're driving, do you find it hard to share the road with bicycles in the street? I almost ran into one last week. You see, there was this big rig blocking half the street, and I was trying to get through like all the other drivers were doing. I didn't see a bicycle trying to get by me on my right (no bike path available, no room between me and the parked cars on my right). Anyway, he starts scolding me in loud gibberish. I think he should have stopped and waited for me to finish getting through the tight spot. I would have done that had I been on the bike!
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SPKrazy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-16-07 09:29 PM
Response to Original message
1. I dunno
it's dangerous to bike some places for sure

:popcorn:


:hi:
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taterguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 07:02 AM
Response to Original message
2. Kick so I can find this thread when I have time to respond
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mainegreen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 07:09 AM
Response to Original message
3. There are some bad bike riders like there are bad car drivers.
On guy I pass a lot on my commute I swear is drunk every morning. You have *no* idea what crazy thing he may attempt. Swerve? Stop suddenly for that invisible dust bunny? Madly fly across two lanes of traffic to make that left turn he failed to signal? Who knows!
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Burma Jones Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 07:11 AM
Response to Original message
4. I treat Bikes like they were Cars
I stay behind them until I can safely pass them, I cede the Right of Way when appropriate, etc.

There are some Bicyclists which, like others, do not obey the rules of the road, they don't wait at the 4 way stop, they weave in and out of traffic at a stop light and otherwise do things that would be unexpected were they done by someone driving a car. I think that's not too bright.....
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pokerfan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 07:58 AM
Response to Original message
5. He shouldn't have been trying to pass on the right
Edited on Thu May-17-07 07:59 AM by pokerfan
It's a fundamental rule of the road for a very good reason and its violation leads to a lot of accidents.

http://bicyclesafe.com

4. Don't pass on the right. This collision is very easy to avoid. Just don't pass any vehicle on the right. If a car ahead of you is going only 10 mph, then you slow down, too, behind it. It will eventually start moving faster. If it doesn't, pass on the left when it's safe to do so.

If several cars are stopped at a light, then you can try passing on the right cautiously. Remember that someone can fling open the passenger door unexpectedly as they exit the car. Also remember that if you pass on the right and traffic starts moving again unexpectedly, you may suffer #3, the Red Light of Death.


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Gormy Cuss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 08:13 AM
Response to Original message
6. No bike path /no room means that the bicyclist should have claimed the lane.
Edited on Thu May-17-07 08:27 AM by Gormy Cuss
That is, moved out into the center of the lane as if he were in a car. He may have tried and failed because no driver would let him merge. Of course, he may also just have been a bad bicyclist.
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mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 10:38 AM
Response to Original message
7. bikes on the road have all the rights and responsibilities as autos....
As you described the situation, the cyclist should not have been passing you on the right.

As a bicyclist, I get really pissed off by BOTH ignorant drivers and ignorant cyclists, e.g. cyclists that ignore stop signs, make improper turns, etc. They are just as bad as drivers who don't slow down and yield to cyclists in front of them or who cut off cyclists at stop signs or lights.
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taterguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 03:58 PM
Response to Original message
8. Sounds to me like you just encountered a rude person in general
Too many people are in a hurry and there's not enough space on the roads. This applies to all vehicles. We all need to share the roads.

A little more understanding on both sides would help. If you truly have difficulty with cyclists than you should spend some time riding a bike on the roads. It will help you appreciate what it's like from the perspective of cyclists. Walk a mile in someone else's shoes ya know.
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billyskank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:00 PM
Response to Original message
9. I try to give them plenty of room
Some of our roads are very narrow and when there's loads of oncoming traffic I can't. I try to crawl past them slowly instead. :(
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no name no slogan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:03 PM
Response to Original message
10. Car drivers-- STAY OUT OF THE BIKE LANES
My pet peeve is car drivers who think that the bike lanes are another passing lane, or a turn lane. NOT TRUE.

In the bike lane, THE BIKES HAVE RIGHT OF WAY. That means you STAY THE HELL OUT unless you ABSOLUTELY have to avoid an accident, or are trying to parallel park.

I bike almost daily and it never fails that some fuckwit can't figure out that "Bike Lane" means that's where the bikes are supposed to be.

On the topic at hand: the bikes have as much right to the road as you do. As a car driver, you are obligated to pay attention to all traffic-- auto, bicycle, pedestrian, pogo stick, etc.

Maybe he shouldn't have passed you, but you are obligated to be aware of all traffic on the road, regardless of the type.
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DS1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:06 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. no shit
I see that ALL the time around here, and it drives me nuts. Someone is making a left turn, and everyone's got to fly around him instead of waiting like a normal fucking human being.
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Kutjara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:09 PM
Response to Reply #10
13. Depends where you are.
When I moved to California last year and had to take my driving test, I was surprised to read in the Driver's Handbook that car drivers are required to drive into a right-side bike lane 200 feet before making a right turn. It sounds nuts to me, but I suppose it's meant to prevent bikes from getting T-boned by cars turning directly across their lane at intersections. I don't know if other states have the same requirement.
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WilliamPitt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:06 PM
Response to Original message
11. Cars and bikes - both only as good as their operators
Here in Boston, I've seen drivers appear to be actively trying to kill responsible bikers...and I've seen bikers riding like they're wearing a "Run my dumb ass over" sign on their backs.

That being said, a bike can dent but a car can kill, so the onus is on the driver regarding safety. I always keep my eyes out for bikes.
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Kutjara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:16 PM
Response to Original message
14. I've never understood why cyclists don't have to be licensed.
Every other road user has to prove their ability to operate their vehicle safely on the road, yet those riding on the most vulnerable and unstable class of vehicle of all can just hop on and ride wherever they like. Some form of mandatory riders-ed would go a long way toward improving road safety. Automobile driver training should also be beefed up to make drivers more aware of cyclists.
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taterguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:19 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. They're not licensed because they can't do much damage
Yes, it's theoretically possible for them to cause an accident if someone swerves to get out of their way but in general they're only going to hurt themselves and their own property.
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Kutjara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:24 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. But isn't licensing supposed to protect the licensed as well?
Edited on Thu May-17-07 04:29 PM by Kutjara
I'm sure your reasoning is correct, but that doesn't mean that society shouldn't seek to protect cyclists, simply because they are unlikely to hurt anyone else. There are also different kinds of hurt. Surely you wouldn't argue that someone who hit and killed a wayward cyclist wouldn't be psychologically harmed by the experience? What about the SO or children of the cyclist? Wouldn't they be harmed by the cyclist's death.

Any road user has the capacity to wreak enormous harm on those around them.

On edit: I think your argument a better one for cyclists possibly not requiring insurance, but even this is debatable. They should probably at least have to carry third-party insurance for any damage they cause to others.
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taterguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. I agree with you I'm just explaining the state's reasoning
In case you hadn't noticed, most of their decisions are based on financial bottom lines and not philosophical right and wrong.

Or maybe no DMV employees are capable of administering a bicycle road test? :)
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Kutjara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:40 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. Yes, you're undoubtedly right.
Edited on Thu May-17-07 04:42 PM by Kutjara
Also, I didn't consider the extra cost to the DMV of hiring examiners who aren't too fat to ride a bike. Maybe they could get the motorcycle examiners to moonlight.
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grace0418 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:23 PM
Response to Original message
16. I have noticed so many bikers in Chicago who will freak about every little thing that
drivers do wrong, yet the bikers feel no compulsion to follow the rules of the road. It makes no sense to me why someone one a bike doesn't feel that they should stop at a light or give right of way. Because even if the driver of the car is in the wrong it's still going to be the biker who gets smooshed, so why take chances.
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Deja Q Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:37 PM
Response to Original message
19. I do. But they have to obey the same laws as anything that rolls on wheels.
:think:

Pedestrians need to obey their laws too; but our society prefers to scapegoat every last minute detail on automobile drivers.

It's bollocks.

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Maineiac Donating Member (361 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 04:43 PM
Response to Original message
21. The law in Maine is abasically
same rules, same road. Legislation is pending to require a 3 foot clearance between car and bike when they pass, even if it means the cars must slow until a suitable lane is clear. Of course, if the roads had adequate shoulders for bikes to move over to when cars are trying to pass this would npt be an issue, but that's another issue in Maine. Don't get me started on the DOT.
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Writer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 05:03 PM
Response to Original message
22. What you speak of is blasphemy here in Colorado.
Although they provide bike lanes in this city, at least, and because everyone does bike when they're not in their car, there is a mutual respect on the road.

My experiences in Austin, however, were far different. That city has extremely cramped infrastructure - there is NO room for bike lanes. Cyclists do their best to keep up, but I've gotta say, when I was on a major thoroughfare and was having to slow down to 16 mph to compensate for Mr. Roadie I found that frustrating at times. I had to risk going into the oncoming lane to get around him.

There was a huge Critical Mass contingent in Austin, too, which would gather in groups and block off lanes to prove the point that... they're on bikes, I think, and that everyone should look out for them. Texas is not a friendly state for bikers. My sister and her husband biked a lot in Dallas, and each of her friends have war stories about idiot cars not looking out for them. One friend of theirs completely flipped off the road after a truck cut him off. He fell into a ravine and broke several bones in his body.

I suppose my final point is cultural. Each area has its own attitude about cyclists. I think if a city can provide infrastructure for these bikers, they should.
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Dyedinthewoolliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 05:12 PM
Response to Original message
23. It's been my experience
that car drivers rarely see my big fat, electric lime green ass on my bike. Where I live, bikes have the same right to the road as cars. Of course, thinking like that will ge me killed :)
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pdx_prog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-17-07 05:30 PM
Response to Original message
24. Portland is one of the most bike friendly
cities in the country. We have LOTS of cyclists here including me. There are the psycho bikers downtown though that think every car on the street should yield to them, and that traffic laws and signs do not apply to them.

I did something similar downtown a couple of years ago. They were doing some street repairs downtown and I had to detour around a block by making a right turn onto another street. I heard something smash into the passenger side door and looked to see a guy on a touring bike go down to the ground. I thought "oh my god, I didn't notice the bike lane!" I got out prepared to apologize my ass off but then I realized that there wasn't a bike lane there. The guy was screaming and swearing and the lady behind me said he drove down beside her right side, then mine. He was riding between us and the cars parked on the side. His front wheel was pretty messed up and he told me I was going to have to pay for it. I told him to go fook hiself. He argued with me for a while and I finally had enough and said I would just call the police to let them decide. I opened my truck door and got my phone to call them and then I guess he figured out that I wasn't going to play his game and he apologized and went on.

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pokerfan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-18-07 09:12 AM
Response to Reply #24
25. I'm a cyclist but my biggest pet peev is other cyclists
So many of them just seem to give the middle finger to the rules of the road. They switch from vehicle to pedestrian at the drop of a hat. They ride on sidewalks then cruise out into the street with no warning. They ride through red lights as if the rules don't apply to them.

Believe me, no one hates bad cyclists more than other cyclists.

And the same thing also applies to motorcyclists., of which I am also one. Too many people seem to think that once they are on two wheels the rules no loner apply.

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