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Old 01-05-06, 10:01 AM   #1
Tmax1
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Cyclist' Rights in Alabama...

Yup, even here in Alabama...we cyclists' are having to defend our position for rights on the road. Read all about Birmingham's "struggle" here:

http://www.al.com/news/birminghamnew...200.xml&coll=2
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Old 01-05-06, 11:50 AM   #2
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Once again it mostly became a rant about cyclists not stopping for signs and signals.
As if infractions for cars would jeopardize motorists access to public roadways.

And it brought up the fallacy of cyclists not paying for the roads, without rebuttal.
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Old 01-05-06, 03:35 PM   #3
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The link appears to be broken. All that comes up for me is some javascripted form that asks for my zip and stuff.
Maybe the OP can post the meat of the article here?
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Old 01-05-06, 03:59 PM   #4
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oh, the place I call home... damn rednecks...

two cycilst (different cases) from brimingham area are taking two cops to court for there tickets they recieved for "impeading traffic" though I know one of the roads is a four lane road, so cars can pass in the other lane and there is no shoulder, just a concert curb, it made the local news, I think the other cyclist was from Pelham, the news story was actually good, it sided with the cyclist saying that we have the right to the road
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Old 01-05-06, 04:16 PM   #5
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You can read it if you give them your zip code and year of birth.

Not a great article. Tries to be "fair and balanced" by giving "both sides" but since the anti-bicycle argument was total crap it fails hard on the "fair" part. "Cyclists break the law sometimes" -- true, but even more true for autos. "Bicycles shouldn't be on the road because they aren't safe" -- they're demonstrably safer than motorcycles in single vehicle crashes, and equally (un)safe in multi-vehicle crashes. So...ban motorcycles, or allow bikes?

BTW, I can't think of a good reason not to change bike laws in most places to match those in Idaho, where cyclists are allowed to treat stop signs as yield signs (proceed without stopping after making sure it's safe), and to treat stop lights as stop signs (right on red without stopping after making sure it's safe; full stop, look and proceed if safe if going straight or turning left). Can you think of a reasonable argument against that? http://www.lostrivercycling.org/idcode.html



Still, it's good to see any coverage of cycling, and at least the article does stress the right of cyclists to use the road in AL.
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Old 01-05-06, 04:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by budster
You can read it if you give them your zip code and year of birth.

Not a great article. Tries to be "fair and balanced" by giving "both sides" but since the anti-bicycle argument was total crap it fails hard on the "fair" part. "Cyclists break the law sometimes" -- true, but even more true for autos. "Bicycles shouldn't be on the road because they aren't safe" -- they're demonstrably safer than motorcycles in single vehicle crashes, and equally (un)safe in multi-vehicle crashes. So...ban motorcycles, or allow bikes?

BTW, I can't think of a good reason not to change bike laws in most places to match those in Idaho, where cyclists are allowed to treat stop signs as yield signs (proceed without stopping after making sure it's safe), and to treat stop lights as stop signs (right on red without stopping after making sure it's safe; full stop, look and proceed if safe if going straight or turning left). Can you think of a reasonable argument against that? http://www.lostrivercycling.org/idcode.html



Still, it's good to see any coverage of cycling, and at least the article does stress the right of cyclists to use the road in AL.
Okay, gotcha. The article is more of the same old brainless BS trying to damn the bicycle for the car culture caused dysfunction on the road. Sometimes I wonder if the only requirement to get a driving licence is a full frontal lobotomy.
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Old 01-05-06, 06:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by budster
You can read it if you give them your zip code and year of birth.

Not a great article. Tries to be "fair and balanced" by giving "both sides" but since the anti-bicycle argument was total crap it fails hard on the "fair" part. "Cyclists break the law sometimes" -- true, but even more true for autos. "Bicycles shouldn't be on the road because they aren't safe" -- they're demonstrably safer than motorcycles in single vehicle crashes, and equally (un)safe in multi-vehicle crashes. So...ban motorcycles, or allow bikes?

BTW, I can't think of a good reason not to change bike laws in most places to match those in Idaho, where cyclists are allowed to treat stop signs as yield signs (proceed without stopping after making sure it's safe), and to treat stop lights as stop signs (right on red without stopping after making sure it's safe; full stop, look and proceed if safe if going straight or turning left). Can you think of a reasonable argument against that? http://www.lostrivercycling.org/idcode.html

Still, it's good to see any coverage of cycling, and at least the article does stress the right of cyclists to use the road in AL.
If i recall here in ohio its always been legal for bikes to turn right on red regardless of what any sign says. This is mainly do to our being prety damn skinny and having a in general higher stance. Basically we can see over obstruction that cars and many suvs cant. A fair no turn on red intersection will have some obstruction that blocks your view to the left makeing it far less safe to turn right on red.

I think most states allow a cyclist who is alone on the street to treat a red light as a stop light. We are ither to light or dont have enough metal to trigger a light to change.

Careful though many cops will not know that you may run the red lightdo to it not functioning for you.

For advocacy sake i say follow the same laws as a car regardless of any bike specific laws like stop signs - yeild for you or right turn on red regardless.

Ive had numerous drivers roll down their windows and complain about the screwed up stoplights and how they dont stay green long enough. Or lame stop signs in places there shouldnt be any.
Alot of drivers see a cyclist suffering through the same crap as them will tend to treat you better in many cases.
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Old 01-05-06, 08:12 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nova
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For advocacy sake i say follow the same laws as a car regardless of any bike specific laws like stop signs - yeild for you or right turn on red regardless.

Ive had numerous drivers roll down their windows and complain about the screwed up stoplights and how they dont stay green long enough. Or lame stop signs in places there shouldnt be any.
Alot of drivers see a cyclist suffering through the same crap as them will tend to treat you better in many cases.
That's very good advice. I've noticed that drivers treat me much better after we'd waited through the same light together.

I brought up the Idaho law because I think it's a good model for most states, including AL, NC and OH. But your point about advocacy and following the car laws has merit.

I'm a big believer in following current law regardless, especially when all it does is inconvenience me a little.

Here's a link to Ohio bike laws, BTW: http://crankmail.com/fredoswald/Bicycle-Law-Digest.html

AL bike law: http://www.massbike.org/bikelaw/bikelawh.htm#ALABAMA

And for all states: http://www.massbike.org/bikelaw/bikelaw.htm

Looks like an active effort is underway to improve bicycle laws in OH. That mandatory use of sidepaths law in AL Article 12: Section 32-5A-263 (c) would be a good candidate for law reform: "Wherever a usable path for bicycles has been provided adjacent to a roadway, bicycle riders shall use such path and shall not use the roadway." That's more than just inconvenient; that can be downright dangerous.
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Old 01-05-06, 08:14 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2wheeledsoul
... Sometimes I wonder if the only requirement to get a driving licence is a full frontal lobotomy.
True that, my brother. True that. Personally, I'd rather have a bottle in front of me.
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Old 01-06-06, 05:39 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by budster
Looks like an active effort is underway to improve bicycle laws in OH. That mandatory use of sidepaths law in AL Article 12: Section 32-5A-263 (c) would be a good candidate for law reform: "Wherever a usable path for bicycles has been provided adjacent to a roadway, bicycle riders shall use such path and shall not use the roadway." That's more than just inconvenient; that can be downright dangerous.
We only have one "bike" path about 4 miles long or less AND we have one three block section of "bike" lane on a city street.

I received an email this morning from the cyclist involved in this ticketing incident where he states there is now no 1/10 court date and that his lawyer is handling matters. This is coming from a very vocal cyclist who is biting his tongue. He also stated that we (cyclists) should err on the conservative side until his case is resolved.

Critical Mass wouldn't fly here. And I don't know if anything semi-radical would help or not. Some stealth guerilla postering or stickering would at least make me feel like I was doing something.

I think the best thing I / we can do is just to get out there and ride as many of you have suggested. Be seen, be responsible, be safe.

JG
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Old 01-06-06, 07:52 AM   #11
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Chock another one up to the lazy, car addicted average americans and the people who are paid to protect and serve them. I'd insist on the ticket.


BTW, there is no right to the road for anyone. But you still have to fight to get what you deserve.
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Old 01-06-06, 08:18 AM   #12
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There was a try at CM here at The University of Alabama a couple of years ago, but it did not last... not enough cyclist, not enough "activist" kind-of-people either... I just take my lane (we have a lot of roadside parking around town) and just except the finger as the drivers why of acknowledging my exsistence
Keep us updated on the case in Brimingham
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