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  1. #1
    Slip stream Ebt racer's Avatar
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    Motorists in the bike lanes

    I'm posting to see how many other people have this problem. It has been one of my major complaints about city riding. once or twice I've bin clipped by a car who has been driving in the bike lanes and then had them cursing and swearing at me. Now a little clip doesn't seem like much but when you're going 40+ks on a road bike a little clip could kill you!

    I always get so mad when i see people doing it, whether I'm riding or walking or driving, and it happens all the time! Also another major problem I've had is smashed glass in the lanes.
    I wish there was a way to keep the cars out of the bike lanes and that they could be kept clear.

    any responses to this are welcome.
    even legs of steel and years of cycling still dont make it any eaiser to get out of bed early in the morning to train

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Are you getting clipped mid-block or at intersections by turning vehicles? What's the speed limit on these roads where you are going 40+km/h?

  3. #3
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    you think the drivers like you in the road MORE than in the bike lane?

    drivers dislike bikers regardless; with a preferential lane only the absolute wackjobs have anything to complain about. but the drivers hate to see bikes pass traffic congestion in a bike lane as well.

    i guess the only solution is to eliminate bike lanes, and get stuck in traffic?

    i hate potholes and glass. i find these hazards all over the road. drivers too, for that matter.....
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  4. #4
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    Generally if traffic backs up too much, people look for whatever they can find to jump the line... parking lots, side streets, and bike lanes. I've never had anyone act aggressively in a dedicated bike lane, but in the diamond lanes (for buses bikes taxis) I've been honked at by cars that were not allowed to be there in the first place.

  5. #5
    Dominatrikes sbhikes's Avatar
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    Airzound.
    ~Diane
    Recumbents: Lightning Thunderbolt, '06 Catrike Pocket. Upright: Trek Mountain Bike.
    8.5 mile commute. I like bike lanes.

  6. #6
    Spazzy Member zippered's Avatar
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    um, doesn't seem like much?

    getting clipped is not acceptable, i might be inclided to consider it getting hit. were you able to get the license plate? i've only made one traffic complaint report (which didn't go anywhere, but it was fairly minor with no contact) but though i'm leery of the police, perhaps if these incidences weren't ignored, things might change.

    might. slowly.

  7. #7
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    Most bike lanes in my neck of the woods are only about 4 feet wide. Where I most frequently see vehicles intruding on them is at right-hand curves in the road where the driver is trying to take a tighter line. Alas, these lanes have become known locally as the "glass and gravel" lane due to lack of regular street sweeping.
    1994 Ciocc Gara - Pearl Yellow
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  8. #8
    going downhill fast maximusvt's Avatar
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    I haven't ever used this line but if I encounter a car stopped in traffic, waiting in the bike lane, I will just knock on his rear window and ask him if he's saving a lot of time.
    Yesterday I encountered a slow moving lawnmower or tractor riding in the bike lane so that the cars could pass him. I almost got pissed off about it, but I just pulled in front of one of the cars and passed him as well. Not worth getting bent out of shape over.
    ...and don't forget to stretch!

  9. #9
    The quieter you become... Falkon's Avatar
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    If I saw a car in the bike lane trying to pass traffic, I'd probably throw my water bottle.
    Quote Originally Posted by TechKnowGN
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  10. #10
    Banned. Helmet Head's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist
    drivers dislike bikers regardless
    Speak for yourself Bek. I get nothing but mutual respect, and often waves and smiles, from the vast majority of drivers. If you want to be treated like a vehicle driver, you need to act like one, which you obviously don't.

  11. #11
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    That extended finger isn't a "wave," HH...

  12. #12
    Banned. Helmet Head's Avatar
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    Drivers in California and in most other states are REQUIRED to merge into bike lanes prior to make right turns, and are allowed to do so up to 200 feet prior to their turn.

    In California and in most other states, a motorist in the bike lane within 200 feet of a right turn is perfectly legal and proper.

    Of course, they should yield to any cyclists who are in there, but once they're partially in the bike lane, they have the right of way, and you have to yield to them.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helmet Head
    Drivers in California and in most other states are REQUIRED to merge into bike lanes prior to make right turns, and are allowed to do so up to 200 feet prior to their turn.

    In California and in most other states, a motorist in the bike lane within 200 feet of a right turn is perfectly legal and proper.

    Of course, they should yield to any cyclists who are in there, but once they're partially in the bike lane, they have the right of way, and you have to yield to them.
    I think you're only partially correct.

    First: They "should" yield to any cyclist who is in the bike lane? So they don't have to yield? They can cut you off? They can mow you down? Come on, you must realize that they "must" yield to any cyclist who has the right of way.

    Second: They have the right of way, and you have to yield to them? You must mean once they are in the properly in the lane, they have the right of way IF you are approaching from behind.

  14. #14
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helmet Head
    Speak for yourself Bek. I get nothing but mutual respect, and often waves and smiles, from the vast majority of drivers...

    WHERE IS THIS ERSATZ CYCLING PARADISE? I want to go there, just for vacation. - I rode 65 miles today, helemt head, how much did you ride? you think i don't ride like a vehicle........
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  15. #15
    Banned. Helmet Head's Avatar
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    WHERE IS THIS ERSATZ CYCLING PARADISE? I want to go there, just for vacation.
    It's whereever I ride, without exception. If you think driver respect is a function of where you ride, rather than how you ride, you're missing the whole point of VC.


    - I rode 65 miles today, helemt head, how much did you ride?
    Only 6 miles so far.

    you think i don't ride like a vehicle........
    Based on how you write about it, I don't think you act like a vehicle driver when you're riding in traffic.

  16. #16
    Banned. Helmet Head's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Order
    I think you're only partially correct.

    First: They "should" yield to any cyclist who is in the bike lane? So they don't have to yield? They can cut you off? They can mow you down? Come on, you must realize that they "must" yield to any cyclist who has the right of way.
    I don't make the distinction between should and must that you are in this context. By "they should" I mean they're supposed to; if they don't they're breaking the law. I did not mean to imply yielding is somehow optional.

    Another example: Right turn only lanes should be used only for turning right.

    Second: They have the right of way, and you have to yield to them? You must mean once they are in the properly in the lane, they have the right of way IF you are approaching from behind.
    Right. And this is often the case, since they are usually slowing down for their right turn.

  17. #17
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    head, if you think you'd get 'smiles and waves' and gingerbread cookies handed out windows wherever you ride a bicycle, i think it is candyland where you're riding, bub.

    i think there are drivers everywhere that won't respect a bicyclist except begrudgingly. the problems are not bicycle accomodations on the road.
    Last edited by Bekologist; 10-03-06 at 08:37 PM.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  18. #18
    Slip stream Ebt racer's Avatar
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    Generally I find most Drivers to be quite friendly buthis is a massive generalisation) I have most problems with p platers and ute or small truck drivers. I now many arn't like that but they make up the majority of my problem drivers.

    quote joe jack 951:Are you getting clipped mid-block or at intersections by turning vehicles? What's the speed limit on these roads where you are going 40+km/h?

    Of the two or three times i have been clipped one was one a highway by a guy towing a caravan, the second was crusing through town on a straight road with a speed limit of 80kms and the third was at traffic lights by an impatient driver
    even legs of steel and years of cycling still dont make it any eaiser to get out of bed early in the morning to train

  19. #19
    -=Barry=- The Human Car's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Order
    Second: They have the right of way, and you have to yield to them? You must mean once they are in the properly in the lane, they have the right of way IF you are approaching from behind.
    See:
    (MPEG)
    http://massbike.org/police/mpg/rightturn.mpg
    or
    (MP4)
    http://massbike.org/police/MP4/Right_Turn.mp4
    Cycling Advocate
    http://BaltimoreSpokes.org
    . . . o
    . . /L
    =()>()

  20. #20
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ebt racer
    Of the two or three times i have been clipped one was one a highway by a guy towing a caravan, the second was crusing through town on a straight road with a speed limit of 80kms and the third was at traffic lights by an impatient driver
    For the first and second examples, were those vehicles by themselves, in the front of a pack, or inside of a pack of vehicles? Assuming one of the first two options, positioning yourself further left, outside of the bike lane, can help considerably in getting more space in these situations. Often times, when motorists see a cyclist in a bike lane, they only pay attention to being to the left of the stripe and pay no attention to where the cyclist is in the bike lane as long as they are to the right of the stripe. This often results in very close passes and I've heard of quite a few cyclists getting clipped by mirrors that hang into the bike lane even when the vehicle's wheels are outside of it. The trailer incident is something I've had to deal with on narrow roadways. I've learned to force them as far left as possible (while still keeping reasonable space for them to pass), letting the tow vehicle get by then moving back right as the trailer passes as it almost always swings right earlier than the driver seems to think it will. With a bike lane, you have plenty of room to get the driver first to move left then move yourself to the right to maximize the space between you and him. For a vehicle in a pack clipping you, about the best you can do is monitor traffic in a rear view mirror and look for close passes. Again, get yourself as much space as you can from the start and move right only as needed.

    At the traffic light, were you blocking a turning vehicle by being in the bike lane?

  21. #21
    Senior Member sggoodri's Avatar
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    If more motorists drove in the bike lane more of the time, over a greater distance, the debris would get swept past the bike lane.

  22. #22
    Banned. Helmet Head's Avatar
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    On my ride home last night I experimented. Riding in a bike lane, near the stripe, about 15 mph (slight upgrade) I was watching in my mirror traffic go by on my left at about 40. They were following a line a few feet from the BL stripe, not adjusting for my presence. I started zig-zigging. I would zig from about the center of the bike lane to the stripe, back and forth. Nothing wild. Really, just smooth constant "S" curves. Immediately the traffic behind me responded by moving a few feet left, closer to the left edge of their lane. It was like a dance.

  23. #23
    Senior Member rando's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sggoodri
    If more motorists drove in the bike lane more of the time, over a greater distance, the debris would get swept past the bike lane.
    this is a good point.
    "Think of bicycles as rideable art that can just about save the world". ~Grant Petersen

    Cyclists fare best when they recognize that there are times when acting vehicularly is not the best practice, and are flexible enough to do what is necessary as the situation warrants.--Me

  24. #24
    Punk Rock Lives Roughstuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruiser
    Generally if traffic backs up too much, people look for whatever they can find to jump the line... parking lots, side streets, and bike lanes. I've never had anyone act aggressively in a dedicated bike lane, but in the diamond lanes (for buses bikes taxis) I've been honked at by cars that were not allowed to be there in the first place.
    I feel that since I enter the 'car lane' on a regular basis (to avoid a pothole, to improve road surface, to bypass a parked car, to turn left if the left turn lane is a doable option) yadda yadda, it would be the height of hypocrisy to grudge cars entering the 'bike lane' for what very often is the same motive--convenience. I say share the road.

    roughstuff
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  25. #25
    Punk Rock Lives Roughstuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helmet Head
    On my ride home last night I experimented. Riding in a bike lane, near the stripe, about 15 mph (slight upgrade) I was watching in my mirror traffic go by on my left at about 40. They were following a line a few feet from the BL stripe, not adjusting for my presence. I started zig-zigging. I would zig from about the center of the bike lane to the stripe, back and forth. Nothing wild. Really, just smooth constant "S" curves. Immediately the traffic behind me responded by moving a few feet left, closer to the left edge of their lane. It was like a dance.

    Wow...what a great idea. Lets let cars, trucks, buses, (we are ALL TRAFFIC, right? ) and semi's start doing nice little sine wave motions back and forth in their lanes on the road, and maybe we can pipe in music to give 'em a rhythm to sway to. If you saw a car behind you swaying back and forth in his lane, would it make you hug the right of the bike lane as ya got a bit nervous? Would it be like a 'dance?'

    Alot of street punks ride erratically in the shoulder all the time, and as I say so often, it destroys all the goodwill that drivers develop seeing experienced, courteous and long distance cyclists.


    roughstuff
    Electric car sales are on fire! :)

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