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Old 08-03-07, 01:48 PM   #1
buddy
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Bike Road Rights

This is an e-mail that was sent to a city council person (Mr. Culbertson) complaining about bikes on a local road known as the River Road. As the name of this road would imply it follows the Mississippi River and it is as stated in the email as "very narrow stretch of road that bends with a lot of blind spots". What this person did not state in their email is that this road is designated as a "biking training road" and there is signage-warning motorist concerning bikers. I will post the follow up that this councilperson sent to this person and an email from the city traffic engineer.


Quote:
<<From: XXX
<<Sent: Thursday, July 19, 2007 6:10 PM
To: council-dist3@...
Subject: FW: Help w/ River Road



Mr. Culbertson,

I need your help. I almost killed a man today on River Road. He was riding his
bike, it was very wet and I was following a truck at about 50 MPH. The truck
swerved quickly to miss the cyclist and swerved back into the proper lane.
However, there was an oncoming truck in the opposite lane and I had to make a
split second decision; either hit the truck coming at me head or hit the
cyclist. I hit the horn, the truck coming at me saw what was happening and moved
to his right and I barely missed the cyclist with no less than 6 inched to
spare. And then he had the audacity to flip me off and cuss. I saved his life
and he thinks I was in the wrong. I know the law says bicycles are allowed to
share the road, but the laws of physics trump the laws of government. This was
on River Road between LSU and Brightside. This is a very narrow stretch of road
that bends with a lot of blind spots. This was not my first encounter with a
cyclist, but it was the closest and scariest.



What can be done? Can we ban bicycles from this stretch of road? I do not want
to hurt anyone, and I know there have been accidents with bicycles on this part
of the road before.



Thanks,



XXX
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Old 08-03-07, 01:50 PM   #2
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This is the follow up email:

Quote:
From: Pat Culbertson [mailtomculb@...]
Sent: Thursday, July 19, 2007 9:54 PM
To: XXX
Cc: Ingolf Partenheimer; Lea Anne Batson
Subject: RE: Help w/ River Road
Well I am certainly glad you saved his life though at the risk of your own and
others.

I am copying Ingolf Partenheimer (DPE traffic engineer) and Lea Anne Batson
(city parish attorney) to see if they can think of anything that can improve
this situation.

I am sure Lea Anne can give us an opinion on the legality of banning cyclists
from a state highway or even a stretch of it.

Pat Culbertson
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Old 08-03-07, 01:52 PM   #3
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This is the response from the city engineer:

[QUOTE][/From: Ingolf Partenheimer [mailto:IPARTENHEIMER@...]
Sent: Monday, July 23, 2007 10:58 AM
To: XXX
Cc: Lea Anne Batson; Pat Culbertson
Subject: RE: Help w/ River Road



Dear XXX,



First, I would like to say how relieved I am that the accident was avoided.
That having been said the following will probably upset you, but it must be
pointed out.



Legally, bicycles are legal vehicles on all public roadways except on
Interstates. Bicycles have the same rights to the use of a roadway as do
cars/trucks etc. As a safe and prudent driver, it is incumbent upon the driver
of a passing vehicle to leave a long enough distance (gap) between himself and
the vehicle in front of him for him to be able to see and not be surprised by
what is coming up. The possible consequences could be a death of a bicyclist and
a charge of Vehicular Homocide.



That said, I drive River Road alot too. Sometimes, I have to wait for an
approaching vehicle to pass me before I can pass a bicyclist. It's definitely
fustrating. But over time I have realized to expect bicyclists on this roadway
and to leave the room between me and the car in front of me. Hopefully, in the
near future the bike lane on the levee will be lengthened to cover all of River
Road to New Orleans. However, until then we should take extra care and share the
road with Bicyclists. It's only fair!!



Respectfully,

Ingolf A. Partenheimer, P.E., P.T.O.E.
Chief Traffic Engineer
City Of Baton Rouge - Parish Of East Baton Rouge
DPW/Traffic Engineering
329 Chippewa Street
Baton Rouge, LA 70805
(225)-389-3246 (Office)
(225)-389-7633 (Fax)

QUOTE]
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Old 08-03-07, 01:54 PM   #4
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This is the response to the city engineer.

Some people just don't get it!



Quote:
-----Original Message-----
From: XXX
Sent: Monday, July 23, 2007 11:23 AM
To: Ingolf Partenheimer
Cc: Lea Anne Batson; Council District 03 (Mr. Culbertson)
Subject: RE: Help w/ River Road


What a load of BS!



Apparently you need a lesson in physics as well, which explains a lot about the
traffic in Baton Rouge. A 4000 lb. vehicle traveling at 50 mph (the legal speed
limit) and "vehicle" weighing 10 lbs. traveling at 12 mph on a winding road can
not occupy the same space at the same time.



Remember, the laws of physics don't recognize the laws of governments!



Exceptions can be made to any law, especially when the exception is made to save
the lives of those foolish enough to ride their bicycle on that stretch of road
and to save the car/truck driver the emotional trauma of having killed, crippled
or severely injured a cyclist.





XXX




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Old 08-03-07, 02:13 PM   #5
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Props to Ingolf for taking the hard stance.
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Old 08-03-07, 02:33 PM   #6
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how about a reply of, you hit the cyclist, you go to jail; or to lower the posted speed limits
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Old 08-03-07, 02:36 PM   #7
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If it was wet, and the road was twisty with a lot of blind corners, why the f*ck was the first driver going 50 mph?

The more I ride, the more I hate cagers...

I actually thought about having a guy deported yesterday. Some person of Latin descent (hard to tell where they're from), ran a stop and honked at me for going through the intersection. I didn't have a stop sign. He turned and cursed at me in pidgin english, which was funny as hell. I offered to stop and kick his housepainting/lawn-mowing/illegal immigrant ass. I know where he lives and that he's illegal and I have connections with I.C.E.
The thought has crossed my mind to send them by his house...
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Old 08-03-07, 02:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by damocles1 View Post
If it was wet, and the road was twisty with a lot of blind corners, why the f*ck was the first driver going 50 mph?

The more I ride, the more I hate cagers...
Pretty much sums it up for me. I try not to get angry and make generalizations about large groups of people but damn it's difficult at times.
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Old 08-03-07, 02:44 PM   #9
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Do it, he's probably screwing up someone's life using their SSN illegally


Quote:
Originally Posted by damocles1 View Post
If it was wet, and the road was twisty with a lot of blind corners, why the f*ck was the first driver going 50 mph?

The more I ride, the more I hate cagers...

I actually thought about having a guy deported yesterday. Some person of Latin descent (hard to tell where they're from), ran a stop and honked at me for going through the intersection. I didn't have a stop sign. He turned and cursed at me in pidgin english, which was funny as hell. I offered to stop and kick his housepainting/lawn-mowing/illegal immigrant ass. I know where he lives and that he's illegal and I have connections with I.C.E.
The thought has crossed my mind to send them by his house...
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Old 08-03-07, 02:44 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by damocles1 View Post
If it was wet, and the road was twisty with a lot of blind corners, why the f*ck was the first driver going 50 mph?

The more I ride, the more I hate cagers...

I actually thought about having a guy deported yesterday. Some person of Latin descent (hard to tell where they're from), ran a stop and honked at me for going through the intersection. I didn't have a stop sign. He turned and cursed at me in pidgin english, which was funny as hell. I offered to stop and kick his housepainting/lawn-mowing/illegal immigrant ass. I know where he lives and that he's illegal and I have connections with I.C.E.
The thought has crossed my mind to send them by his house...
How do you feel about black people? Or the Irish...you hate them to?
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Old 08-03-07, 02:51 PM   #11
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Unless the guy was driving a flatbed with a Caterpillar on the back with a "Wide Load" banner on the back, he should have had room to pass safely.
When I ride, I'm three inches from the white line, cars can safely pass me with sufficient room without their mirrors even going over the yellow on a two lane state route.

That being said however, there are cyclists who are just dumb, as in jumping off sidewalks and into the road without looking, or swerving constantly. (Trust me, I know about rough sections of road, but I either go into the gutter on the right, or look behind me and go to the smoother left side if nobody is behind me.)

A few weeks back I almost hit a hippy because I was veering right at 35mph and he curb hops his wal-mart bike in front of me and almost got hit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dcbikeguy View Post
How do you feel about black people? Or the Irish...you hate them to?
Well, they're not soaking up your tax dollars and getting free healthcare, are they?
Not trying to turn this into a political debate, I was happy to see in the news when cops were rounding up illegals and deporting them. The [illegal] families had the audacity to complain. That's like robbing peoples houses and complaining about the system being unfair for you when you get caught.
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Old 08-03-07, 03:11 PM   #12
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^^ I value your opinion.

Isn't that quote under your sig from these guys...




Yeeeeehaaaa!!!
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Old 08-03-07, 04:08 PM   #13
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Does the cage driver have a bionic ear? How the helll could he hear cussing if he whizzed past the cyclist at 50 mph?
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Old 08-06-07, 01:46 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrimsonKarter21 View Post

Well, they're not soaking up your tax dollars and getting free healthcare, are they?
Not trying to turn this into a political debate, I was happy to see in the news when cops were rounding up illegals and deporting them. The [illegal] families had the audacity to complain. That's like robbing peoples houses and complaining about the system being unfair for you when you get caught.
Move down here, where they are debating making Spanish a secondary language in schools! Half of the kids in this state cannot speak proper English and they need to learn Spanish? Yeah, right! We're 49th in education with a bullet...

My initial post had nothing to do with any ethnic group, nor was it racist. In SC, Latin workers aren't exactly taking accounting jobs away from college grads. The are, in fact, painting and building houses, mowing lawns and the like. And yes, the majority of them are illegal.

We are all immigrants, unless you are 100% American Indian. The difference is the fact that every other minority ethnic group has made the effort to blend in this grand society. By all means, keep and value your heritage, but embrace the place you have chosen to call home.

And before all of you knee jerk liberals jump in with your own views, ask yourself this question...

If you moved to Italy, would you insist on speaking English and want everyone else to do so, or would you make the effort the actually learn Italian language and customs?
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Old 08-06-07, 02:34 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by damocles1 View Post
Move down here, where they are debating making Spanish a secondary language in schools! Half of the kids in this state cannot speak proper English and they need to learn Spanish? Yeah, right! We're 49th in education with a bullet...

My initial post had nothing to do with any ethnic group, nor was it racist. In SC, Latin workers aren't exactly taking accounting jobs away from college grads. The are, in fact, painting and building houses, mowing lawns and the like. And yes, the majority of them are illegal.

We are all immigrants, unless you are 100% American Indian. The difference is the fact that every other minority ethnic group has made the effort to blend in this grand society. By all means, keep and value your heritage, but embrace the place you have chosen to call home.

And before all of you knee jerk liberals jump in with your own views, ask yourself this question...

If you moved to Italy, would you insist on speaking English and want everyone else to do so, or would you make the effort the actually learn Italian language and customs?
1. False
2. How about a knee jerk personal opinion? You're a jerk.
2a. Non-knee jerk opinion: Did you know this is a bike forum?
3. If I spoke Italian very poorly or just arrived and have only began to learn Italian I would want people to converse with me in English if possible. I also would appreciate it if when I chose to speak Italian, Italians would not call my "pidgin [italian] funny as hell"--this would probably encourage me not to speak Italian. Also, if there were a large (by large I mean big-ass) group of English speakers in Italy, I would not think it unreasonable for Italians to learn some English to be able to better bridge the gap between the two groups of people.
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Old 08-06-07, 02:37 PM   #16
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[QUOTE=buddy;4995468]This is the response from the city engineer:

Quote:
[/From: Ingolf Partenheimer [mailto:IPARTENHEIMER@...]
Sent: Monday, July 23, 2007 10:58 AM
To: XXX
Cc: Lea Anne Batson; Pat Culbertson
Subject: RE: Help w/ River Road



Dear XXX,



First, I would like to say how relieved I am that the accident was avoided.
That having been said the following will probably upset you, but it must be
pointed out.



Legally, bicycles are legal vehicles on all public roadways except on
Interstates. Bicycles have the same rights to the use of a roadway as do
cars/trucks etc. As a safe and prudent driver, it is incumbent upon the driver
of a passing vehicle to leave a long enough distance (gap) between himself and
the vehicle in front of him for him to be able to see and not be surprised by
what is coming up. The possible consequences could be a death of a bicyclist and
a charge of Vehicular Homocide.




That said, I drive River Road alot too. Sometimes, I have to wait for an
approaching vehicle to pass me before I can pass a bicyclist. It's definitely
fustrating. But over time I have realized to expect bicyclists on this roadway
and to leave the room between me and the car in front of me. Hopefully, in the
near future the bike lane on the levee will be lengthened to cover all of River
Road to New Orleans. However, until then we should take extra care and share the
road with Bicyclists. It's only fair!!



Respectfully,

Ingolf A. Partenheimer, P.E., P.T.O.E.
Chief Traffic Engineer
City Of Baton Rouge - Parish Of East Baton Rouge
DPW/Traffic Engineering
329 Chippewa Street
Baton Rouge, LA 70805
(225)-389-3246 (Office)
(225)-389-7633 (Fax)

QUOTE]
I like how Ingolf politely replies that the driver was an idiot for tailgating a big truck, yet the driver still flips out about the laws of physics not recognizing the laws of governments. Sound like a freshman polisci/phil major to anyone?
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Old 08-06-07, 02:57 PM   #17
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This is pretty common: drivers using the speed LIMIT to justify cars superiority and (imagined) right to eliminate bikes from the roads. I think the city engineers next letter should be a proposal to drop the speed limit to 12 mph.

Sigh. All to common I'm afraid.
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Old 08-06-07, 03:05 PM   #18
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Sounds like the lane is too narrow to be safely shared, and, yet, the cyclist was riding as far right as possible, which is not practicable for precisely the potential situation described in the OP.

Had the cyclist been riding further left, the truck driver in front of the bozo would have been forced to slow down and/or adjust left earlier, giving the bozo more time to adjust for the pass too.

This is a great example of why you should not ride near the right edge of a 2 lane road with narrow lanes.
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Old 08-06-07, 03:35 PM   #19
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First, Mr. XXX is a jerk. He states in his letter that he was well aware of the road topography, limited sight distance and frequency of encountering cyclists on this wet day but did nothing to make it a safer trip for all other users of the road. He's lucky he's not in jail for vehicular manslaughter.

Second, Mr. canthidefromme: If I lived in Italy I would make every effort to learn Italian, and I wouldn't sneak into Italy but would enter legally. The problem with the "illegals" is they do not want to blend into our society, they want us (English speaking) legal residents to change our culture to pander to them.

Third Mr. Helmet Head: +1. You nailed it.
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Old 08-06-07, 03:41 PM   #20
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Yep, and riding further to the left on curves, also improves sight-lines, for both the cyclist being able to see, and the cyclist being seen.
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Old 08-06-07, 03:43 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcbikeguy View Post
How do you feel about black people? Or the Irish...you hate them to?
He didn't indicate that he disliked any race, only that he disliked scofflaw illegal aliens. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that stance.

I am sure that he has no problem with legal aliens, or U.S.Latinos.
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Old 08-06-07, 03:43 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OH306 View Post

Third Mr. Helmet Head: +1. You nailed it.
Try doing what mr HH recommended on a daily basis on the same road and let me know how long it takes before some motorhead decides to "teach you a lesson" with anything from a bump with their vehicle to a thrown bottle at your head.
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Old 08-06-07, 03:44 PM   #23
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Like most traffic troubles, lowering the speed limit would certainly help.

I'll stand by my stance that all roads ( excluding interstates) should have a speed limit of 25 mph country, 15 mph city.
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Old 08-06-07, 03:48 PM   #24
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Let's see hitting the horn was an option, but hitting the brakes was not.

All I need to know.
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Old 08-06-07, 04:05 PM   #25
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Let's see hitting the horn was an option, but hitting the brakes was not.

All I need to know.
+1
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