Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Crazy Bicycle Car Traffic Issues
Old 08-17-2009, 12:13 PM   #1
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
growing_older's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,608
Crazy Bicycle Car Traffic Issues

Bicycles and cars sharing the road can be a problem.

Recently there have been some accidents where cars or trucks
have struck bicyclists, with disastrous results. In response
some bicyclists have started riding in large groups and confronting
motorists. Rreacting to that, some motorists are up in arms
about how the bicyclists break traffic rules.

This morning while waiting at a red light, I was signalling
a right turn. Just as the light was about to turn, a bicyclist
passed me on the right and slowly rode across the intersection,
blocking my turn. Luckily I saw him, but it's not something I
would ever expect. He's lucky I was attentive, as I could easily
have started my turn and instead of passing illegally on the
right, he would have ended up riding directly into the side
of my vehicle, or worse I could have knocked him down and drove
over him without even knowing he was there.

Do these bicyclist think that they are immortal? Even if such
flagrant violation of traffic laws as darting around lanes and
routinely running red lights and stop signs cannot be improving
their travel time all that much, the risks they take while
doing so are unbelieveable.
__________________

__________________
growing_older is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 08-17-2009, 01:23 PM   #2
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,823
That can be so aggravating, but just think of how bad you would feel if you actually ran over a bicyclist, even if it was his/her fault. We can benefit from being careful - - if not to avoid harming the bicyclist, then simply to avoid unnecessary mental anguish.

(and I can't help but recall what my brother would have said about that statement 40 years ago when we were little.... "and to avoid making such a mess with all the blood and everything!")
__________________

__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 01:24 PM   #3
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 4,764
Police need to start ticketing riders just as often.
__________________
Notmuchlonger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 01:46 PM   #4
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
growing_older's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,608
Actually, I was a bicycle commuter for a couple years, so I am pretty familair with the issues bicyclists face driving on streets. That being said, I always made a point to obey the traffic laws and be as visible and predictable to cars as I could. I know enough physics to understand the consequences if 1000+ pounds of steel collide with a bike rider, even with a half pound of styrofoam on my head.

That's what I think most amazes me about the bicycle commuters I've been seeing recently. They seem to think they are immune to consequences, or at the very least they seem to think the risks are far less than I ever did.
__________________
growing_older is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 06:20 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Los Angeles area
Posts: 1,432
I biked to work most of my career (in the LA area), and most of my vacations have been bike touring. I have found that focusing on being seen and on not being 'unpredictable' will keep you out of almost every bad situation. I have only had to make sudden stops / turns etc a few times in 250K miles or so of riding to avoid collisions. The vast majority of cars want nothing to do with having an accident with cyclists and will give us as much room as possible. My only serious accidents have been solo efforts.

However, most non-cyclists are very bad at determining how risky cycling is. I have seen discussions between non-cyclists about how dangerous riding on certain roads is that I am familiar with, or riding at night, or in the rain. Most seem well-meaning but have no clue.

I deplore the riders who make the rest of us look bad by riding like morons or forming large groups to annoy motorists into disliking us in general. Those who ride illegally should be ticketed just like cars.
__________________
learn, work, save, invest, fire
CyclingInvestor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 06:31 PM   #6
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
BunsGettingFirm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,502
I had my uncle advise me to right AGAINST traffic so that I can be seen. Yeah, OK. At the first intersection, any driver looking left to make a right turn will run you right over.

As for riding at night, you need a big honking LED tail light, a real head light powered by a real water-bottle battery, not one of those $5 jobs powered by two D cells, and reflectors galore to be seen.

Is cycling "safe"? I don't think any active sport is safe. I have been almost clipped while jugging in Manhattan, and I have had high speed falls while skiing, and I almost drowned while learning how to kayak. In fact, the friend who was showing me how to kayak that day later did fall off a waterfall and drown. Life is not safe, but the only thing you can do is to know the rules and play by them. The rest, short of staying in bed all day, is calculated risk.
__________________
BunsGettingFirm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 06:38 PM   #7
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
youbet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 9,965
Quote:
Originally Posted by growing_older View Post
Do these bicyclist think that they are immortal?
Well yes, many do.

Every close call I've had with a bicyclist has been because the bicyclist was not obeying traffic laws, usually running red lights or stop signs. Happened just last week. I pass through the campus of a small college in Naperville while transporting my grandson home from an Easter Seals facility. At a four-way stop, a cyclist, who appeared to be slowing, suddenly proceeded through without stopping just as it was my turn and I had started to accelerate. I was able to brake in time, but it was scary, and it scared my grandson.

I'll gladly go out of my way to help cyclists. I understand that when they loose momentum stopping at a light or stop sign, it takes effort to get going again. But they need to be consistent so that drivers know what to expect. And I know most are. But once in a while a cyclist does something to scare the begeesies out of me......... and I just hate that.
__________________
"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
youbet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 06:44 PM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
BunsGettingFirm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,502
Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet View Post
Well yes, many do.

Every close call I've had with a bicyclist has been because the bicyclist was not obeying traffic laws, usually running red lights or stop signs.
I think we need to make a distinction here. Just because someone is on a bicycle doesn't make him or her a cyclist just as anyone with two functional legs and the ability to jog doesn't make him or her a marathoner. The bicycle commuters and recreational or racing cyclists I know know that they are taking a risk and try to minimize the risk by being sane and operating by the rules, but any Dick or Harriet can hop a bike, so you'll see all kinds of idiotic behaviors from "cyclists."
__________________
BunsGettingFirm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 06:45 PM   #9
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
TromboneAl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 11,194
Most serious cyclists do not support the Critical Mass rides that have become so confrontational.

Many cyclists are young clueless risk takers. Saw one riding the wrong way on the freeway (no helmet) just 30 minutes ago.

I use a Superflash blinkie (very bright blinking taillight) even in the bright sunshine. It gets cagers' attention, and they give you more room.
__________________
Al
TromboneAl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 06:49 PM   #10
Moderator
bssc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 9,923
Here, the cyclists ride on the side walk and the police let them. I have also noticed a couple riding while talking on a handheld cell phone. Great acrobatics.
__________________
Angels danced on the day that you were born.
bssc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 06:55 PM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 4,764
Oop

__________________
Notmuchlonger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 07:20 PM   #12
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
youbet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 9,965
In one of our local forest preserves, there is a long, paved trail shared by walkers and bikers. There are some basic rules about where you're supposed to be so both can co-exist. But it's still scary when bikers ride really fast and very close to families with strollers, little kids, etc. Finally, a biker hit a four year old and killed him. I have no clue who was at fault. But I do know that our city and park planners need to give considerable thought to bikes sharing rodeways with cars and bikes sharing paths with people so we hold the carnage to a minimum. Don't need bike riders getting whopped by a truck. Don't need people getting whopped by bikes.

When I see these critical mass rides on a street, it reminds me of mobs of walkers on shared bike/people trails that block the bike riders from getting through at high speed.
__________________
"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
youbet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 08:41 PM   #13
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
haha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Hooverville
Posts: 22,380
Quote:
Originally Posted by BunsGettingFirm View Post
I think we need to make a distinction here. Just because someone is on a bicycle doesn't make him or her a cyclist just as anyone with two functional legs and the ability to jog doesn't make him or her a marathoner. The bicycle commuters and recreational or racing cyclists I know know that they are taking a risk and try to minimize the risk by being sane and operating by the rules, but any Dick or Harriet can hop a bike, so you'll see all kinds of idiotic behaviors from "cyclists."
This is often not true. The biggest cycle scofflaws around here are those very expert cyclists who ride fixed hub gearless bikes, or essentially one gear bikes with no freewheeling capability. I doubt they could stop when coming down a steep hill, even if they wanted to which they seem not to want to do anyway. These people are very good, they can pause almost motionless in the saddle when they do deign to stop at a light.

They are the same class of hotshots as ride skateboards down the middle of long steep city hills.

Recently I just missed a much less expert rider doing a very dumb thing. I was cresting a hill that neither of us could see over, in the far right lane. She was switchbacking up and directly in front of me when I got where I could see her. She didn't have the power to go straight up, and for some reason chose to switchback rather than stand up to pedal or dismount and push her bike. I always go slowly there to avoid some idiot coming over the center line in a car, and it is a good thing.

Ha
__________________
"As a general rule, the more dangerous or inappropriate a conversation, the more interesting it is."-Scott Adams
haha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 09:05 PM   #14
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 899
Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
I use a Superflash blinkie (very bright blinking taillight) even in the bright sunshine. It gets cagers' attention, and they give you more room.
Ahh, you know the secret code word !
__________________
mb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 09:09 PM   #15
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 899
Quote:
Originally Posted by CyclingInvestor View Post
I biked to work most of my career (in the LA area), and most of my vacations have been bike touring. I have found that focusing on being seen and on not being 'unpredictable' will keep you out of almost every bad situation.
I think that CyclingInvestor has it right.

In the past 30 year I have only had two "incidents." One when a guy in a parked car opened his door into me as I was riding by and once when a woman ran a stop sign.
__________________
mb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2009, 09:26 PM   #16
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 160
Quote:
Finally, a biker hit a four year old and killed him. I have no clue who was at fault.
Are you seriously suggesting that a 4-year old was at fault because the bicyclist should be able to ride that fast near family groups hiking? Did I misunderstand the situation you described?
__________________
quietman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 01:27 AM   #17
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Goonie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: North-Central Illinois
Posts: 3,198
Quote:
Originally Posted by Notmuchlonger View Post
Police need to start ticketing riders just as often.
They do here where I live! All bicyclists are expected AND required to obey the rules of the road, and are barred from riding on sidewalks in the main business district. Violators are ticketed, and repeat violators have their bikes impounded for 30 days. Repeat violators who get caught violating again, have there bikes impounded for 90 to 180 days.

I have a friend whose MORONIC brother has been ticketed many times, and has had his bikes impounded for 6 months at a time....several times! The first couple of times that his bikes got impounded, he just went out and bought a new bike the same day. The police saw him riding it, and impounded it as well. He has been hit by cars several times, and has hit cars several times. He doesn't feel he needs to have lights on after dark, 'cause he can see where he's going. Did I mention that most of his accidents have been at night!? I watched him get run over at a local grocery store one day. He was riding as fast & furious as he could, round & round the parking lot. A little old lady backed out of a parking space just as he rounded the bend, she couldn't see him coming, and he couldn't stop in time....CRUNCH!!! His bike was turned into scrap, and he got a severe case of road rash!!!

A guy I used to work with was driving downtown one evening, and a bicyclist ...riding on the wrong side of the street....blew through a red light, directly in front of his van. The bike went under the van, and the rider went over the hood and up over the roof, and off the back end onto the pavement. The police came and while they were waiting for the ambulance, they wrote the bike rider several tickets for traffic violations.

When I was in grade school, we used to have bicycle safety training EVERY year! They had a police officer come in and talk to us, as well as bicycle safety films. Now I don't think anyone teaches bicycle safety to youngsters....including their parents!
__________________
Goonie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 03:38 AM   #18
Full time employment: Posting here.
jambo101's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Montreal
Posts: 940
Montreal has a lot of bike paths and the city is adding more every year.
http://www.voyagezfute.ca/download/i...lable_2008.jpg
Trouble is all the Lance Armstrong wannabes dont use them and insist on tearing through the city in the road usually two abreast holding up traffic and blowing through every stop sign and traffic light all the while the bike path is right beside themAnd of course expect lots of one finger salutes and a verbal cussing if you go through an intersection on a green light in your car and happen to in some way impede them racing through a red light.
__________________
"Second star to the right and straight on till morning"
jambo101 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 06:20 AM   #19
Full time employment: Posting here.
Badger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 824
Quote:
Originally Posted by BunsGettingFirm View Post
I had my uncle advise me to right AGAINST traffic so that I can be seen.
This was VERY bad advice. There is a reason for it being illegal - at least in my part of the country. Unfortunately too many folks (young and old) don't know or don't think. The fact that you tend to go where you look is something that is taught in motorcycle safety classes. I see quite a few of these bicyclers looking at the cars coming toward them and wobble into the lane before making the adjustment. One day they won't be so lucky.

Cheers!
__________________
Badger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 09:48 AM   #20
Moderator
Walt34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern WV Panhandle
Posts: 16,494
Quote:
Originally Posted by Notmuchlonger View Post
Police need to start ticketing riders just as often.
I did when I was on the road (patrol division). Most were stunned to discover that yes, the rules applied to them too!

Much the same issues as with a motorcycle - simple physics decides who gets the worst end of the deal in a collision. If they "don't get it" they can figure it out while they're trying to scratch the itch under their cast.
__________________

__________________
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
Walt34 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Bicycle conversion. Cattusbabe Other topics 7 07-04-2008 11:28 PM
Bicycle Touring in Isaan ForeignExchange Life after FIRE 1 03-19-2007 11:45 AM
Bicycle tourist boathole Other topics 11 12-15-2006 11:54 AM
Bicycle Tours donheff Other topics 4 09-17-2006 11:19 AM
Bicycle-Kayak yakers Other topics 9 10-27-2004 07:21 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:07 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.