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Old 12-19-07, 03:07 PM   #1
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How would you feel about bike commuting on ...

How would you feel about bike commuting on a street with little plastic flower memorials on the sidewalk where pedestrians had been killed and ghost bikes where cyclists have been killed?
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Old 12-19-07, 03:14 PM   #2
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I would hope it would remind drivers to pay more attention to us!
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Old 12-19-07, 03:15 PM   #3
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spooked and a little nervous!
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Old 12-19-07, 03:16 PM   #4
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Wow.

I wonder how many graves we could mark to remember motorists, as well.

It would dwarf the Vietnam Memorial Wall, as it stretched around the entire nation.
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Old 12-19-07, 03:20 PM   #5
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Great thread!

I love the ghost bikes, and feel a real sense of connection, empowerment and visibility whan I see them.
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Old 12-19-07, 03:29 PM   #6
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It would be biased for the worse unless there were ghost motor vehicles too.

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Old 12-19-07, 03:55 PM   #7
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I don't know about around the Arizona area or the Atlanta area, but there are numerous markers placed by the relatives of deceased motorists around in Oregon. Some as simple as a white cross nailed to a scarred tree or stuck into the ground, and some quite elaborate, as if a grave site. One individual or family went so far as to build several huge signs telling people to slow down as they took the curves of a country road.
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Old 12-19-07, 04:09 PM   #8
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I don't know about around the Arizona area or the Atlanta area, but there are numerous markers placed by the relatives of deceased motorists around in Oregon. Some as simple as a white cross nailed to a scarred tree or stuck into the ground, and some quite elaborate, as if a grave site. One individual or family went so far as to build several huge signs telling people to slow down as they took the curves of a country road.
These are prominent especially where I live, where residents take their family seriously enough to make a public statement.

Memorials, teddy bears, flowers, crosses, all mark places where human beings have lost their lives on the road.
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Old 12-19-07, 04:19 PM   #9
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The white crosses for motorists would remind them to drive carefully. The white crosses for pedestrians and ghost bikes for cyclists would remind the drivers that cyclists need to be more careful.
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Old 12-19-07, 04:22 PM   #10
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^^^
Eh... such is life.

Actually, white crosses tell motorists that someone was stupid and hit a tree and they are glad that it wasn't them or anyone they know. Same as for cyclists.

It's probably how it should be too. Memorials are not for making statements or teaching people things. Memorials are for remembering.
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Old 12-19-07, 04:49 PM   #11
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^^^
Eh... such is life.

Actually, white crosses tell motorists that someone was stupid and hit a tree and they are glad that it wasn't them or anyone they know. Same as for cyclists.

It's probably how it should be too. Memorials are not for making statements or teaching people things. Memorials are for remembering.
Totally agree Brian. That is why I think the memorials if any should not be a bike or car. Instead what the family/friends want - if this happens to be a bicycle, then OK I guess, but not a bicycle put there by 'cycling advocates'

Roadside memorials are very common in Arizona. So common in fact there is backlash against them with lawmakers/government getting involved...

Mesa removing them:
http://www.azcentral.com/community/m...ments1003.html
"I find it very annoying to see memorials on every corner," the email read."

ADOT removing them:
http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepu...rials1006.html
"The roadside memorials, ADOT says, are too much of a safety hazard and can be too distracting for motorists."

http://img.azcentral.com/community/c...rials1103.html

Al
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Old 12-19-07, 05:23 PM   #12
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I have to admit that now that my commute goes through an area like this I've avoided the direct route because I saw the memorials. It's always been a nervous place to ride (I have lived here my whole life and it's always felt like that) and now being older and knowing how much it hurts to get hit by a car I just don't want to ride there, especially during the busier times of day.

I'm really glad there's an alternate route even if I have to ride an extra mile or so.

So anyway, I guess if I've avoided riding through an area with memorials what they're actually saying to me is to not ride a bike there.
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Old 12-19-07, 05:36 PM   #13
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I have to admit that now that my commute goes through an area like this I've avoided the direct route because I saw the memorials. It's always been a nervous place to ride (I have lived here my whole life and it's always felt like that) and now being older and knowing how much it hurts to get hit by a car I just don't want to ride there, especially during the busier times of day.

I'm really glad there's an alternate route even if I have to ride an extra mile or so.


So anyway, I guess if I've avoided riding through an area with memorials what they're actually saying to me is to not ride a bike there.
This is my concern about memorials. We already have media, motorists and bicycle advocacy groups molding public opinion that cycling on public streets is an unusually dangerous activity. Memorials add to that perception. Is that a good thing for cycling?
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Old 12-19-07, 05:41 PM   #14
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[QUOTE=Brian Ratliff;5838643]^^^
Eh... such is life.

Actually, white crosses tell motorists that someone was stupid and hit a tree



Thats not the way I see it. What it does tell me is that someone who was loved and cared for lost their life here, and that they want to share their rememberance of them with the public.

Its very sad.
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Old 12-19-07, 06:11 PM   #15
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Roadside memorials are very common in Arizona. So common in fact there is backlash against them with lawmakers/government getting involved...

Mesa removing them:
http://www.azcentral.com/community/m...ments1003.html
"I find it very annoying to see memorials on every corner," the email read."

...
Wow. I guess some people get a little uncomfortable with the ugly truth.
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Old 12-19-07, 06:18 PM   #16
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Wow. I guess some people get a little uncomfortable with the ugly truth.
On a brevet between Florence and Tucson Saturday(middle of nowhere pretty much), I managed to look right just past a guard rail and saw seven of them. I don't know if they were put down there to hide them from ADOT or not, but I did pause and reflect a bit. The stories of 7 lives lie there.

Kind of humorous in a sick way, a few miles previously I had been to the "Tom Mix" memorial which comemorates the spot of his death. Kind of hypocritical for ADOT to say some memorials are alright and not for others.
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Old 12-20-07, 12:48 AM   #17
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^^^
Eh... such is life.

Actually, white crosses tell motorists that someone was stupid and hit a tree
Thats not the way I see it. What it does tell me is that someone who was loved and cared for lost their life here, and that they want to share their rememberance of them with the public.

Its very sad.
That's another way of putting it. My point is that people don't think of their own behavior when they see the road memorials. They think of the poor sap who was killed.
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Old 12-20-07, 12:57 AM   #18
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Actually, memorials don't tell me that. Is that what they tell you, Brian?
Odd comment. Are you insinuating something about my character here?

Eh, whatever - par for the course here in A&S. Sure, that's what I think. What do you think about when you see one of those road signs? Is it a que to tap the brakes and be extra cautious? If it is, then you should be asking yourself why you need the reminder. Or is it a que to think of the poor sap who bit it and feel sorry for him and be glad that you aren't in his or his family's shoes? Be honest now.
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Old 12-20-07, 01:19 AM   #19
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This is my concern about memorials. We already have media, motorists and bicycle advocacy groups molding public opinion that cycling on public streets is an unusually dangerous activity. Memorials add to that perception. Is that a good thing for cycling?
I think this is the wrong question to ask. I can tell you that if I had a loved one die in an accident on the road and I felt strongly that I should memorialize the spot of their death, I couldn't give a damn if it's "a good thing for cycling."

The cycling community here is tight. When a cyclist is killed, it isn't just cycling advocates who memorialize the person. It's the person's family and friends, with the bicycling community backing them. It's a community event and a community protest when a cyclist dies. I don't see anything wrong with that.

As for the "perception" that cycling is dangerous. Well, to a certain respect, it is. But it is a different kind of danger than we are used to. The dangers aren't random events caused by nature. The dangers all consist of decisions that people make that sum up to kill another person. And so be it if those memorials marking the spot of the death of a person on a bicycle remind someone of this.
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Old 12-20-07, 09:43 AM   #20
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If I ever give up the ghost while I'm on the road I want an active memorial set up for me. One that can take photos of unsafe drivers license plates and send them to the DMV for processing.
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Old 12-20-07, 12:08 PM   #21
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I will do everything possible within my means to not have a roadside memorial erected in my honor, and if I keep doing what I have been all these many years, looks like I'll make it to the cemetery as a man who died from old age. To answer the OP, roads with numerous memorials would make me only a tad more alert of the surrounding traffic environment to the already intense awareness that I give it now.

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Old 12-20-07, 12:11 PM   #22
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Actually I do pass a ghost bike on my daily commute. I used to pass the cyclist and even asked him to stop at the light (twice). Then one day he was gone and the bike showed up about a week later. Hit and run - the perpetrator was never found.
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Old 12-20-07, 03:00 PM   #23
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I just read an account of a ghost bike in new york city being plastered with fliers advertising a used car business. So I guess they really aren't that good for cycling advocacy.
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Old 12-20-07, 08:33 PM   #24
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Were it up to me, all major auto wrecks would have permanent memorials. People would complain that they saw memorials of car wrecks everywhere. That is, of course, the POINT.
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Old 12-28-07, 06:08 PM   #25
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Memorials tell me that someone died who could still be living, and that their family misses them dearly.
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