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  1. #1
    Sumanitu taka owaci LittleBigMan's Avatar
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    Motorist training

    I heard on the news here in Atlanta recently (I hope I am repeating this accurately) that, "For the first time in Georgia history, driver's education will be required before an applicant can receive a driver's license."



    I would go a step further. I would require cyclist training for motorists as well, so they will know our side of the picture, after having ridden a mile in our cycling moccasins.

    Of course, that might be "too much government..."

  2. #2
    Every lane is a bike lane Chris L's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Pete Clark
    I would go a step further. I would require cyclist training for motorists as well, so they will know our side of the picture, after having ridden a mile in our cycling moccasins.

    Of course, that might be "too much government..."
    Not really, I believe this is one area of the law (possibly the only one) where there can never be too much government. However, I don't think that is the biggest problem. I honestly believe motorist incompetence stems from the fact that there is no re-test facility. I mean, if I got a licence tomorrow and didn't drive again for 20 years, all the authorities would know is that my driving record is clean.

    How is that any proof of competence? What is the point of giving someone lessons if you just give them the opportunity to forget them just as quickly?

    Chris
    "I am never going to flirt with idleness again" - Roy Keane
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  3. #3
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    I think educating motorists about cyclists should be required. Many motorists don't know what to do when they encounter a cyclist.
    Demonstrating how to safely pass a cyclist should be required just as demonstrating how to parallel park is required. Both take practice.
    And periodic re-examination should be required before a license is renewed.

    I wonder how many motorists are like my father-in-law. He knows NOTHING about traffic laws and cycling. We have had several heated discussions about the subject. He feels cyclists should be on the sidewalk and not the roads. They just get in his way.
    I stay away from his neighborhood when I'm on my bike.
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  4. #4
    Member SteveF's Avatar
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    RonH,

    Here's a link to a page that has a list of the relevant Georgia legal code sections pertaining to bicycles on the road:

    http://www.serve.com/bike/georgia/galaw.html

    From what I've seen, it seems similar to other states--i.e., bicycles are vehicles, and are governed by the same rules as other users of public roads. Might make interesting reading for your F-I-L.

    Steve F

  5. #5
    Every lane is a bike lane Chris L's Avatar
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    Originally posted by RonH
    I think educating motorists about cyclists should be required. Many motorists don't know what to do when they encounter a cyclist.
    Demonstrating how to safely pass a cyclist should be required just as demonstrating how to parallel park is required. Both take practice.
    And periodic re-examination should be required before a license is renewed.
    I agree 100% with the above, however, I will add that there should be a psychological test to guage their reactions to stress and excitement as well. This is one sure way to reduce the incidence of "road rage" (which I think should be referred to henceforth as "being a d*ckhead").

    Plus, a person could behave differently in a test in a relaxed environment to a situation on the road where the cyclist that they had to slow down for three seconds to pass has "made me late for work".

    Chris
    "I am never going to flirt with idleness again" - Roy Keane
    "We invite everyone to question the entire culture we take for granted." - Manic Street Preachers.
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  6. #6
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    I think it would be appropriate to include an abbreviated certified Effective Cycling course in every able-bodied motorist's training. California now requires driver training only for license applicants under 18; this should be expanded to cover all applicants. In 1966, I took an excellent classroom and behind-the-wheel driver education course as part of my REQUIRED high school curriculum.

  7. #7
    Senior Member phoenyix's Avatar
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    Ok, but let's even go a step further, by requiring cyclist training even for the cyclist. In my area there are some cyclists that seam to, not know what a stop sign or traffic light is for. Or what side of the street to ride on. just to name a couple.

  8. #8
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    Originally posted by phoenyix
    not know what a stop sign or traffic light is for. Or what side of the street to ride on. just to name a couple.
    Or what lights are for at night, and how easily they could own a set!

  9. #9
    Chicago Cyclist ViciousCycle's Avatar
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    Some motorists can't imagine what it's like to be on a bicycle. When a car comes up behind me, I can usually hear it quite clearly. But a motorist who feels like to have to announce their presence to me by sitting on their horn doesn't realize this. (And strangely, this tends to happen when I am on the right shoulder when the driver is easily able to pass me without having to leave this own lane. Do many drivers not really know how wide their own vehicles are?)

    Drivers occassionally roll down their windows and yell obnoxious things to bicyclists. But my friend Tom once had a driver yell out to him, "YOU'RE IN THE SUBURBS, YOU KNOW!"
    The Easter Island people were clever, but their civilization collapsed after they chopped down the last tree on their island. You can't be 'resourceful' if you've used up all of your resources.

  10. #10
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    I've noticed a new motorist behavior, which seems to be a consequence of wider vehicles (wider is BETTER don't you know). It usually involves a wimpy driver who is both incapable of judging the clearance on the right side of their vehicle, and also so adherent to the rules they refuse to ease over a double yellow line even a half inch. So they come upon a bicyclist and they are TRAPPED. They just drive along at 18 mph, even on desolate rural roads that are relatively straight. I find myself having to look back and wave them on with great encouragment. These poor drivers wouldn't hurt a fly, but they are so pathetic they irritate me almost as much as the reckless rednecks. Amazing.

  11. #11
    Devilmaycare Cycling Fool Allister's Avatar
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    Originally posted by ViciousCycle
    Drivers occassionally roll down their windows and yell obnoxious things to bicyclists. But my friend Tom once had a driver yell out to him, "YOU'RE IN THE SUBURBS, YOU KNOW!"
    That's a classic!

    Of course, the appropriate response would be "SO ARE YOU!"
    If we learn from our mistakes, I must be a goddamn genius.

  12. #12
    Senior Member phoenyix's Avatar
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    There are bad motorists, and there are bad cyclists, too bad in most parts of the country, neither can get along with each other. But here it probably is better than most parts. I live close to the Amish people, for them Bicycles are fast transportation. So most drivers, here do give some courtesy to cyclists. But I think it would be a wise thing to bring back Bicycle safety courses to the School systems, like there were when I was that young.

  13. #13
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    My objection to most school-based bicycle safety programs is that they are rarely taught by lawful vehicular ("effective") cyclists. Instead, the (motorist) instructors will advise staying TOO far to the right (left for Allister and Chris L.), particularly at intersections, and will not advocate lane-taking, even when it is the only way to avoid a nasty sideswipe. In short, they will advocate cycling techniques which minimize motorist inconvenience.

  14. #14
    Every lane is a bike lane Chris L's Avatar
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    Originally posted by phoenyix
    But I think it would be a wise thing to bring back Bicycle safety courses to the School systems, like there were when I was that young.
    Only if they were teaching the right things. Most of the cyclist safety courses aimed at kids around here seem to send a message that "you are inferior to cars". Maybe this is why so many of them are so keen to dump the bike and get a car at the first opportunity.

    The message is also dead wrong. I don't own a car, but my taxes still go into the upkeep of the road. Therefore, I have as much right to use that road as anyone else.
    "I am never going to flirt with idleness again" - Roy Keane
    "We invite everyone to question the entire culture we take for granted." - Manic Street Preachers.
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