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Old 09-25-06, 09:02 AM   #1
sggoodri
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Almost hit a cyclist with my car - have you seen this?

I'm driving my car, complete with NC "share the road" license plate and Bicycle Friendly Vehicle magnet, straight through an intersection on a green light, headed into a shopping center. As I reach the far side of the intersection, a ~30 year old cyclist on a mountain bike coming from the sidewalk at my right runs turns right on red into the outside lane without stopping.

He's turned in the same direction I am, into the 4-lane shopping center driveway, but is using the right (outside) lane while I am using the left (inside) lane. "No trouble," I think, "I wasn't using that lane anyway." But I slow down because something doesn't seem right.

Half a second later, he makes a sudden 90-degree turn to the left and is about to cross my lane right in front of me.

I skid to a stop and so does he. He looks embarassed and I proceed.

I see a lot of teen and adult mountain-bike riders make similar maneuvers at intersections: They turn right, on red or green, then suddenly U-turn, followed by another right turn (to avoid the red) or straight across (to avoid a vehicular left turn.) They usually start this maneuver from the sidewalk, and often appear to be trying to cross behind the cars on the side street rather than in front of them. They surprise me as a cyclist and a motorist when they make the U-turn.

This particular intersection is close to my house and I cross it frequently on my bike with my family with me, including my son in the Burley trailer. We operate vehicularly though this intersection and have not had any problems there. Hopefully this cyclist will see us ride through sometime and think that if the vehicular approach works for us, it can work for him.
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Old 09-25-06, 09:21 AM   #2
AlmostTrick
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It is a shame that many cyclists don't know how to ride properly to keep themselves safe. Good for you for being ready for the unexpected. As drivers of motor vehicles we have to be ready for ANY goofy stunts that others may pull.
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Old 09-25-06, 09:33 AM   #3
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I've seen it before, especially in Philadelphia, although it's slightly modified. Cyclists will pass on the right until they get to the intersection then swing wide right as they cross the intersection on red or through the stop sign (maybe they think going wide will help put more space between them and the traffic coming at them through the green light?) then cut back into the lane after the intersection. The obliviousness to the danger their actions create is impressive.
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Old 09-25-06, 09:36 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joejack951
I've seen it before, especially in Philadelphia, although it's slightly modified. Cyclists will pass on the right until they get to the intersection then swing wide right as they cross the intersection on red or through the stop sign (maybe they think going wide will help put more space between them and the traffic coming at them through the green light?) then cut back into the lane after the intersection. The obliviousness to the danger their actions create is impressive.
I see that wide-swing to the right, too. Often they end up near the crosswalk/stop line, but sometimes they actually cross *behind* the vehicle stopped at the stop line before moving back to the through route.
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Old 09-25-06, 10:54 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by sggoodri
I see a lot of teen and adult mountain-bike riders make similar maneuvers at intersections: They turn right, on red or green, then suddenly U-turn, followed by another right turn (to avoid the red) or straight across (to avoid a vehicular left turn.) They usually start this maneuver from the sidewalk, and often appear to be trying to cross behind the cars on the side street rather than in front of them. They surprise me as a cyclist and a motorist when they make the U-turn.
Crazy stupid stuff like that is not limited to mtn bikers though I see that kind of thing from road riders, mtn bikers, commuters, and students on whatever (1 college, 2 universities here) alllll the time. Kinda sad
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