So this morning on my commute I was nearly side swiped by a car, which there were a lot of witnesses including a bicycle police. I obviously sped up to catch this fellow because it seriously freaked me out and gave her a few choice words of my opinion, bicycle police catches up but just brushes it off like nothing. Says "use the bicycle lane", WTF! I'm apparently only allowed to use the bicycle lane, no matter what obstacle I encounter in it.
This place has bicycle lanes on both sides of the road. I was overtaking a few other cyclists who were using that lane. I was pretty much dead center in the right lane because I didn't want to freak out other cyclists as I was passing. At this point I was already ahead of the biker police. Now all of a sudden this car comes within inches of hitting me on her overtake.
Now before getting up to this point, let me illustrate how useless this so called 'police' is. He's stopped at a red, about 8 other folks on bikes run the red, what does he do? nothing, not even a "Stop! don't run that red."
I sprint up to catch her, she's stuck at the red. It's easy to catch people on this road with a bike because it's not well designed for traffic flow. I stop in front of her and start yelling at her that she nearly killed me. I tell her she came within inches (hand gesture for inches) of hitting me. Now I'm not any specialist in traffic laws, but aren't we supposed to pass within a safe margin, like 3 feet or 1 meter? She says "Get in the bicycle lane". This comment infuriated me so much that I kicked her bumper. (Don't really regret doing it either, no dent or even a scratch) If she was paying attention, she would have noticed that I was overtaking a few other people and that there was no room in the bicycle lane.
I'm basically stalling for time to have the bike cop catch up so he can deal with her.
So he notices the commotion, and catches up, pulls up along her driver side. I tell him she nearly killed me and asked if he witnessed it. He says "yeah, I saw it, you should have been in the bicycle lane". Now this comment REALLY irked me. I told him that as a cyclist I am allowed to use the vehicle lane if there are obstacles in my path that would make it unsafe to be in the bicycle lane, and that she's not supposed to pass that close. His retort? "Move along". Jaw dropping unbelievable. I've never been so appalled at the police. Police never even gave her a word of warning.
The part that really annoyed me was that Law enforcement, who is supposed to uphold the law, and you know, generally caution people about reckless behavior, did jack squat. A few buzzings I can deal with, Police not doing their job, what the heck am I paying taxes for?
Now obviously me yelling through out this whole ordeal didn't help the situation, but I was pretty annoyed for the entire week about people buzzing me and tail gating me that I exploded.
Ok, that's the end of my rant.
The only thing I regret not doing? Making a huge scene out of this. Getting the driver's license plate and officer's badge number. It was morning, I'm not a very morning person.
* I retract my statement that police in TO are any good, they suck, useless, utterly useless.
** I now understand the whole idea of "out with bicycle dedicated lanes".
Here is where it happend. These are not from today, I took these a while ago.
Driver overtakes me here...
And I catch up to her here.