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  1. #1026
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel4 View Post
    Aside from the fact that it's illegal
    Not in Washington State.

    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=46.61.755

    "Every person riding a bicycle upon a sidewalk or crosswalk must be granted all of the rights and is subject to all of the duties applicable to a pedestrian by this chapter."
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  2. #1027
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    I ride on the sidewalk all day, every day. The people in cars are too nuts around here and I'd rather slow down and ride on the sidewalk than get rear ended at 30 mph. The law states that bicycles are permitted on sidewalks except for the downtown business district. Everything else is fair game.

  3. #1028
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    Interesting discussions in this thread. I take the approach of Robert Hurst in "The Art of Cycling." The bicycle gives us a great advantage in that it can go almost anywhere. We need to take advantage of the safest infrastructure available when we ride. This will vary by location, and by the skill and confidence of the rider. I tend to be more of a VC guy...my personal evidence has shown me that in most circumstances it's safest for me. But I will jump onto a sidewalk, a bike lane, even a separated bike path for a period where VC riding introduces what I see as unacceptable risk or traffic intensity. Riding on the sidewalk or a trail requires a much different set of skills and awareness than riding in the traffic lane. Not better or even easier, but different.

  4. #1029
    Member StarDust4Ever's Avatar
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    While I haven't taken the time to fully read the entire thread, I might add that you'll need at bare minimum a rugged HT mountain bike to traverse the sidewalks in my area, and also have mastered the technique of bunny-hopping over curbs.

    Legality or safety matters aside, it amazes me that the roadways are so smooth with 16-ton trucks driving on them all day long, yet sidewalks which typically don't bear much more than a few hundred pounds of pedestrian, are dilapidated beyond recognition. Sometimes I see six inch or more ruts of concrete sticking up out of the pavement. Drunks and homeless bums break tire-slashing liquor and beer bottles on the sidewalk pretty much on a daily basis. Wheelchair ramps are hit and miss; about 50% of crossings have them and 50% don't. You had better have memorized the exact locations of these. If you ride a roadbike down a wheelchair ramp on one side of the crosswalk and just assume that there will be another ramp to ride up on the other side, you're liable to slam your front wheel head-on into an 8-inch curb and endo yourself face-first into the pavement. Even if you manage to get back up, congrats, you've successfully tacoed your front wheel and will likely be limping the bike home.

    Best to stick to the roads IMO. But then you have to plan your route. Do I ride on the edge of a 45mph 5-lane highway in rush hour traffic when everyone's driving 60, and risk getting hit by a distracted driver, or ride through the ghettos and risk getting shot?
    Last edited by StarDust4Ever; 09-23-13 at 09:06 PM.

  5. #1030
    Senior Member Nycycle's Avatar
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    Here in Utah, I get the Mormons riding by trying to convert me, instead I give them a preaching on Bicycle Safety.
    I watched 2 LDS Missionarys cause a serious 2 car collision last year, riding the wong way on the side walk.
    Thats a double bad...
    I hate cars,

  6. #1031
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nycycle View Post
    Here in Utah, I get the Mormons riding by trying to convert me, instead I give them a preaching on Bicycle Safety.
    I watched 2 LDS Missionarys cause a serious 2 car collision last year, riding the wong way on the side walk.
    Thats a double bad...
    A 2-car collision while on the sidewalk? And how can you ride the "wrong way" on the sidewalk?
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  7. #1032
    Senior Member work4bike's Avatar
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    Yes, I'm having a difficult time imagining what happened here.
    "The aim of science is to make difficult things understandable in a simpler way; the aim of poetry is to state simple things in an incomprehensible way. The two are incompatible."

    -- Paul Dirac

  8. #1033
    Senior Member Nycycle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daihard View Post
    A 2-car collision while on the sidewalk? And how can you ride the "wrong way" on the sidewalk?
    Its one of the biggest causes of Car Bike accidents here, The crash I saw was on 3200 West in rush hour trafficBicycloes headed North on the West sidewalk.
    The spead of a bicycle puts a bicycle in a place on a sidewalk that an auto driver does not expect.
    The other crash I saw this year was a bicycle on the sidewalk headed East crossing the freeway ramp, drivers are looking to the left, not expecting fast traffic from the right.
    I hate cars,

  9. #1034
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nycycle View Post
    Its one of the biggest causes of Car Bike accidents here, The crash I saw was on 3200 West in rush hour trafficBicycloes headed North on the West sidewalk.
    The spead of a bicycle puts a bicycle in a place on a sidewalk that an auto driver does not expect.
    The other crash I saw this year was a bicycle on the sidewalk headed East crossing the freeway ramp, drivers are looking to the left, not expecting fast traffic from the right.
    You mean the cyclists go too fast on the sidewalk. That makes sense. It's not that they go the "wrong way" on the sidewalk. Sidewalks aren't directional. What they should do is slow down while riding on the sidewalk.
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  10. #1035
    Casual Student of C&V J.Oxley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daihard View Post
    You mean the cyclists go too fast on the sidewalk. That makes sense. It's not that they go the "wrong way" on the sidewalk. Sidewalks aren't directional. What they should do is slow down while riding on the sidewalk.
    Exactly. I don't ride the sidewalks often, but when I do I cut my speed way down. Not all the way down to typical pedestrian speed, mind you; but an experienced jogger would give me a run for my money.
    That's enough out of you, legs. Shut up and pedal.

  11. #1036
    Senior Member Atophy's Avatar
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    I would say, if you wanna go fast, take the roadway or bike lane. If you choose the sidewalk, move slow, you're the dangerous vehicle to pedestrians now and motorists won't be watching the sidewalks for fast moving objects. I have been riding the sidewalks in urban areas for a long time now, I always travel at a slower pace and never expect a driver to see me first when I come to a driveway or other such intersection.

    I have heard of cyclists killing pedestrians on the local paths here, at least one incident in the past. It all comes to the dominant vehicles having to share the medium on which they're operating on as appropriate and being aware.
    Stupidity is by far the greatest destructive force in the history of humanity.

  12. #1037
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    Japan has millions of everyday cyclists, mothers, fathers, businessmen, housewives, the elderly and children, yet cycling lanes and other infrastructure are practically nonexistent. As a result sidewalk cycling has become the socially accepted norm in Japan and will remain so until sufficient cycling infrastructure is provided. The article below examines the current situation in Japan:

    Metropolis - News & Features | Sidewalk Circus

  13. #1038
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    Quote Originally Posted by tokyobybike View Post
    Japan has millions of everyday cyclists, mothers, fathers, businessmen, housewives, the elderly and children, yet cycling lanes and other infrastructure are practically nonexistent. As a result sidewalk cycling has become the socially accepted norm in Japan and will remain so until sufficient cycling infrastructure is provided. The article below examines the current situation in Japan:

    Metropolis - News & Features | Sidewalk Circus
    I saw almost nothing in that article that highlighted if the cyclists were a distinct menace to pedestrians.

    In a polite and structured society like Japan, there is a greater than average chance of being able to cycle on the sidewalks without being selfish about it. There is no mention of incidents of rude or dangerous cyclists.

    It just sounds like a matter of foreigners attempting to enforce their ideology upon the japanese. Why fix something that isn't broken?

  14. #1039
    Senior Member Cyclosaurus's Avatar
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    I always thought riding on the sidewalk was illegal in Illinois. I recently discovered that Illinois actually permits cyclists to freely use the sidewalk as long as it is not otherwise posted.

    625 ILCS 5/11-1512
    Sec. 11-1512. Bicycles on sidewalks. (a) A person propelling a bicycle upon and along a sidewalk, or across a roadway upon and along a crosswalk, shall yield the right of way to any pedestrian and shall give audible signal before overtaking and passing such pedestrian.
    (b) A person shall not ride a bicycle upon and along a sidewalk, or across a roadway upon and along a crosswalk, where such use of bicycles is prohibited by official traffic-control devices.
    (c) A person propelling a bicycle upon and along a sidewalk, or across a roadway upon and along a crosswalk, shall have all the rights and duties applicable to a pedestrian under the same circumstances.

  15. #1040
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by keyven View Post
    I saw almost nothing in that article that highlighted if the cyclists were a distinct menace to pedestrians.

    In a polite and structured society like Japan, there is a greater than average chance of being able to cycle on the sidewalks without being selfish about it. There is no mention of incidents of rude or dangerous cyclists.

    It just sounds like a matter of foreigners attempting to enforce their ideology upon the japanese. Why fix something that isn't broken?
    Exactly correct. The last sentence in the article wraps up by using the phrase "scourge of sidewalk cycling," while nothing in the article describes any negative effects of sidewalk cycling in Japan. The article only makes a point that some foreigners are shocked, shocked that the Japanese aren't shook up by it.

  16. #1041
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    I always get yelled at by walkers to get on the road when I go on the sidewalk here. I usually only go on sidewalks when I'm biking into in extremely strong headwinds (40+km/h) and can't maintain a good speed.

  17. #1042
    Senior Member work4bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nunymare View Post
    I always get yelled at by walkers to get on the road when I go on the sidewalk here. I usually only go on sidewalks when I'm biking into in extremely strong headwinds (40+km/h) and can't maintain a good speed.
    And then when you get on the road the drivers yell at you to get on the sidewalk. We cyclists get no respect
    "The aim of science is to make difficult things understandable in a simpler way; the aim of poetry is to state simple things in an incomprehensible way. The two are incompatible."

    -- Paul Dirac

  18. #1043
    Senior Member TransitBiker's Avatar
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    Where I live, sidewalks are pedestrian only by law. I don't know why anyone would want to ride on a sidewalk, there's no space, there can be gaps on the sides, and generally tend to be an obstacle course.
    I can't wait for the next pint of good chocolate milk after a long ride.

  19. #1044
    20+mph Commuter JoeyBike's Avatar
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    A million and a half views for this tread. Sidewalks? Really? That many people care?

    I guess many folks think of some bicycle messenger or sushi delivery guy in SOHO terrorizing the sidewalk citizenry in a town where people actually walk on the sidewalks. What I picture in my mind are thousands of miles of smooth concrete through suburbia keeping me off of the 8-lane highway for a few blocks on my way to Office Depot, or the sidewalk in front of my home that I jump on for the length of two houses to get to my corner. Sidewalks that go almost totally unused by anyone else other than some immigrant workers on Wall-mart fully sprung mountain bikes and the occasional housekeeper making her way from the bus stop to some McMansion up the side street. With a little courtesy it is a snap to safely avoid such persons when encountered.

    I see some sidewalks as an untapped cycling resource. Other sidewalks would be hateful cycling suicide almost instantly. Those hateful ones I avoid. The "good" ones that serve as unplanned bike paths for five or six cyclists each day and three or four walkers are regular planned additions to my bike routes often saving me from going around the block needlessly or giving a couple of hundred Suburbans a free shot at me curbside when there is a perfectly usable piece of pavement just five feet away and going in the same direction.

    Now I am not saying that sidewalk riding does not take some extra thought. Actually, there is an art to it. You gotta realize when you take to the sidewalk almost anywhere you are giving up your "right of way" to all vehicles at cross streets and driveways. Yes, when you get to that McDonald's drive through entrance or exit you might want to plan on yielding to a few cars turning in or out. But for any cyclist with a brain and a capacity for cognitive thought, that is not a huge stretch, nor a deal breaker.

    So cycling on the sidewalk may be illegal in some places, but we are certainly NOT going to Hell for doing it properly.
    "For all we know his skills may be excellent, allowing him to ride like an idiot without actually being one." - FBinNY

  20. #1045
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BOGEE View Post
    It is against the law in LA County and believe in California to ride your bicycle on a sidewalk let alone in the wrong direction. Anyway, it is way better on the road.
    While this may be true... I wonder how often someone is stopped for riding a bike on a sidewalk? We do know that occasionally LEOs stop people for riding bikes on the road... for a variety of usually false reasons.

  21. #1046
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    In Estonia I've never seen anyone, even the police, have any problems with Bicyclers riding on sidewalks.

  22. #1047
    Senior Member TransitBiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
    A million and a half views for this tread. Sidewalks? Really? That many people care?

    I guess many folks think of some bicycle messenger or sushi delivery guy in SOHO terrorizing the sidewalk citizenry in a town where people actually walk on the sidewalks. What I picture in my mind are thousands of miles of smooth concrete through suburbia keeping me off of the 8-lane highway for a few blocks on my way to Office Depot, or the sidewalk in front of my home that I jump on for the length of two houses to get to my corner. Sidewalks that go almost totally unused by anyone else other than some immigrant workers on Wall-mart fully sprung mountain bikes and the occasional housekeeper making her way from the bus stop to some McMansion up the side street. With a little courtesy it is a snap to safely avoid such persons when encountered.

    I see some sidewalks as an untapped cycling resource. Other sidewalks would be hateful cycling suicide almost instantly. Those hateful ones I avoid. The "good" ones that serve as unplanned bike paths for five or six cyclists each day and three or four walkers are regular planned additions to my bike routes often saving me from going around the block needlessly or giving a couple of hundred Suburbans a free shot at me curbside when there is a perfectly usable piece of pavement just five feet away and going in the same direction.

    Now I am not saying that sidewalk riding does not take some extra thought. Actually, there is an art to it. You gotta realize when you take to the sidewalk almost anywhere you are giving up your "right of way" to all vehicles at cross streets and driveways. Yes, when you get to that McDonald's drive through entrance or exit you might want to plan on yielding to a few cars turning in or out. But for any cyclist with a brain and a capacity for cognitive thought, that is not a huge stretch, nor a deal breaker.

    So cycling on the sidewalk may be illegal in some places, but we are certainly NOT going to Hell for doing it properly.
    It is my understanding that in many/most states and many towns & cities any cyclists using sidewalk legally must dismount to cross roads, is this true? Where i am and surrounding towns I've only experienced no bikes on sidewalks, so i'm not familiar....

    - Andy
    I can't wait for the next pint of good chocolate milk after a long ride.

  23. #1048
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TransitBiker View Post
    It is my understanding that in many/most states and many towns & cities any cyclists using sidewalk legally must dismount to cross roads, is this true? Where i am and surrounding towns I've only experienced no bikes on sidewalks, so i'm not familiar....
    Here in Seattle, we are allowed to operate bicycles on the sidewalk. No need to dismount when using crosswalks, either. However, drivers don't stop for you when you're waiting at an intersection on your bike, even if you're at a marked crosswalk. In that case, dismounting may work better.
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  24. #1049
    Senior Member TransitBiker's Avatar
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    The car not stopping is probably one reason we have the laws here.

    I wonder if there have been any lawsuits involving this. Here kids can ride on sidewalk & cars have to yield at crosswalks.

    I like your quote. I've observed it to be true, especially insofar as topic at hand..

    - Andy
    I can't wait for the next pint of good chocolate milk after a long ride.

  25. #1050
    Senior Member Nycycle's Avatar
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    Dont ride on the side walk here, my wife will run you down in her car, she hates bicycles
    I hate cars,

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