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Old 10-21-08, 12:26 PM   #1
okacookie
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Was I in the wrong?

Ok well here is what happened...

I was doing a 13.5 mile loop to work this morning since I was going in late and I have not rode in a few days. The route I took invovled basicaly back roads that I knew not a lot of people would be on so if I was going slow I was not going to hold anyone up.

Well, since I am just starting to ride again since I was a wee lad I had been stopping to take a drink of water since I do not feel comfortable yet while riding. I reached the top of a hill and there was a driveway, so I pulled off the road a few feet since I knew that the lane was already wide enough for someone to pass. As I was getting a drink the guy barrels up the hill and lays on his horn, and once he tops the hill he slams on his brakes and takes up both lanes. He gets out and starts yelling and cussing at me because I am an idiot for stopping at the top of the hill.

Personally, I thought this was a better place to stop since there was a wider shoulder, instead of before or after the hill. Anyway, how far should I pull off the road if I am going to stop so hopefully people that are having bad days won't almost kill both of us.

Thanks
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Old 10-21-08, 12:40 PM   #2
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Let's see, top of the hill so you can be seen by drivers (not over the crest in a blind spot).....check
Off to the side of the road out of traffic.......check

Seems OK to me...
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Old 10-21-08, 01:14 PM   #3
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Well, I don't think you did anything wrong there. The driver was an idiot. Get used to them. They are in surplus supply.
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What's frightening is how coherent Hickey was in posting that.
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Old 10-21-08, 01:16 PM   #4
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He was probably looking for any excuse to yell at you, even if his reason makes no sense at all. Some drivers are just enraged by the mere sight of a bicycle.
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Old 10-21-08, 01:18 PM   #5
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How wide is the lane you pulled off of? From your description, you were to the right of the white stripe (or if there was no stripe, you were legally off the road, correct?).

If so, ignore the idiot, you were fine. If he escalated, inform him that you intend to call the police if he continues to harass you. At that point, he'll either run off or intend to do you physical harm. If the latter, be ready to scoot down the hill, then call police. Don't forget to get the tag. Easy as that.

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Old 10-21-08, 02:05 PM   #6
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You did nothing wrong. The top of a hill is one of the best places to stop, whether you're on a bike or in a car. It gives you and the approaching traffic from both directions the best views of each other. In any case, if you were off the road, he had no cause to complain. The guy was just being a jerk, probably because he wasn't paying attention and was startled by you. Frightened or startled people often react with anger to mask their fear, especially if they feel foolish.
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Old 10-21-08, 02:10 PM   #7
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Well, I don't think you did anything wrong there. The driver was an idiot. Get used to them. They are in surplus supply.
Factual statement.
The situation described puts the Cyclist in a-okay position.
'Nuff said.
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Old 10-21-08, 02:11 PM   #8
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As I was getting a drink the guy barrels up the hill and lays on his horn, and once he tops the hill he slams on his brakes and takes up both lanes. He gets out and starts yelling and cussing at me because I am an idiot for stopping at the top of the hill.
So he stopped at the top of the hill to yell at you for stopping at the top of the hill?
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Old 10-21-08, 02:19 PM   #9
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Wait, you pulled off the road and into a Driveway, and he stops his car to yell at you?

Should have pretended it was your driveway/house, told him something along the lines of "git of mah property or I'll go inside and grab mah shotgun!"
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Old 10-21-08, 02:32 PM   #10
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How wide is the lane you pulled off of? From your description, you were to the right of the white stripe (or if there was no stripe, you were legally off the road, correct?).

Yes I was to the right of the white line by a few feet... Also, I would of been surprised if he tried to start something with me... I weigh almost 300lbs so I probably had 150 on him.

I was also going to get his tag and call him in but I didn't get a good look at it because I was shocked that he did that.
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Old 10-21-08, 02:40 PM   #11
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That's all I needed to know. The court finds the motorist guilty of being a complete and entire jerk. Case closed.

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Old 10-21-08, 05:36 PM   #12
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my answer to him would have been to pull out my cellphone and dial 911. Report a driver driving erratically etc.
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Old 10-21-08, 10:41 PM   #13
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So he stopped at the top of the hill to yell at you for stopping at the top of the hill?
ironic isn't it...except the cager wasn't as nice as the OP and he didn't pull off to the side of the road...Usually when people yell at me when I'm on my bike it's either at a stop sign/light or as they are driving along side me which is always fail because apparently very few understand how sound travels through the air. If they yell at me at a light I'll talk to them and then if they complain that I can't be on the road I'll take the entire lane and really they can do whatever they want but a cop cannot arrest me for it since I am able to ride as far to the right as i feel it's safe, and frankly with a moron behind me, I feel safe only when I'm taking the whole lane.
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Old 10-21-08, 11:10 PM   #14
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Should have kicked in his headlight. Works for me.
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Old 10-21-08, 11:12 PM   #15
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Should have kicked in his headlight. Works for me.
^
Looks like Darwin's theory will work very well on this case.

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Old 10-21-08, 11:36 PM   #16
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I forgot to mention that after I get 9/11 on the phone, I whip out the lightweight camping axe and start redesigning his car.
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Old 10-21-08, 11:39 PM   #17
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Screw getting the law involved, all they do is play the whole "Their story against yours" crap. Vigilante justice, that's how I roll.
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Old 10-21-08, 11:44 PM   #18
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In this case, taking the OP's description at face value, I think we can look at the cops as a force multiplier. Basically I would describe this as a road rage incident where there is no he-said she-said explanation that makes sense. To get out of your car and approach another vehicle operator is not acceptable behavior given the history of road rage incidents.
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Old 10-22-08, 12:32 AM   #19
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Screw getting the law involved, all they do is play the whole "Their story against yours" crap. Vigilante justice, that's how I roll.
Someone needs to stick a vigilante frame pump in your spokes.

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Old 10-22-08, 12:35 AM   #20
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The top of a hill is one of the best places to stop, whether you're on a bike or in a car. It gives you and the approaching traffic from both directions the best views of each other.
No it doesn't. The bottom of a hill, yes, but never at the top. This is why you always see No Passing zones marked before the crest of a hill on two-lane highways.

"Off the road", to me, means past the curb (if there is one) or onto the grass. Going into a driveway counts as "off the road", just as long as nobody's going to try entering it while you're standing there.
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Old 10-22-08, 01:03 AM   #21
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No it doesn't. The bottom of a hill, yes, but never at the top. This is why you always see No Passing zones marked before the crest of a hill on two-lane highways.
They're painted as no passing zones because you don't know if a high speed vehicle is coming from the other side of the hill. See attached picture for a rudimentary drawing of what I'm thinking. Red squares are cyclists stopped at various locations...blue squares are cars, blue lines are sight lines. Notice how cars approaching from both sides can see the cyclist if he's stopped at the highest point, but the cars approaching from the right wouldn't see the cyclist stopped at the bottom of the hill until they crest the hill. Of course we're assuming the road is straight which is kind of unusual for a road with any kind of sight impeding hills. Am I missing something?
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Old 10-22-08, 01:38 AM   #22
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They're painted as no passing zones because you don't know if a high speed vehicle is coming from the other side of the hill. See attached picture for a rudimentary drawing of what I'm thinking. Red squares are cyclists stopped at various locations...blue squares are cars, blue lines are sight lines. Notice how cars approaching from both sides can see the cyclist if he's stopped at the highest point, but the cars approaching from the right wouldn't see the cyclist stopped at the bottom of the hill until they crest the hill. Of course we're assuming the road is straight which is kind of unusual for a road with any kind of sight impeding hills. Am I missing something?
Yes, you're missing a few things --

Most of a driver's attention is focused on nearby traffic or hazards no more than 5-10 seconds away. When climbing a hill, they can only see until the curve of the hill drops out of sight, which can be an extremely short distance in some cases, giving less reaction time than the often-recommended two-second rule.

Going literally by your drawing, a car at the red square on the left traveling left-to-right would not be able to see the red cyclist at the top of the hill; even worse would be the middle blue square climbing towards the right square. But, your drawing is flawed because it's not to scale. Either those squares would be representing cars and cyclists tens of feet tall or the hills are severe enough to be a roller coaster in a cheap amusement park.

The next time you're in a car on a hilly road (and where I grew up, arrow-straight roads with lots of hills were common in the countryside), count how long you can see a roadside object as it appears over the crest of a hill versus how long you can see one in the valley of the other side.

However, the BEST place to stop is on the uphill side, high enough to give even more visible distance from the crest of the previous hill, but low enough so that you're not out of sight of traffic climbing towards you. In your drawing, that would be somewhere halfway between the blue squares on the right.
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Old 10-22-08, 01:42 AM   #23
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I should say, though --

The driver in the opening post was a jackass. No argument from me there.
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Old 10-22-08, 01:51 AM   #24
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Off to the side of the road out of traffic.......check
Regardless of where, a hill, a ditch, mt. doom, this is all that matters. You're off the road, if you wanted to get off your bike to dance you're in the right.
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Old 10-22-08, 01:55 AM   #25
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Just as long as he's OFF the road and not just on the shoulder (I think he was probably far enough anyway, especially if he went into a driveway). When someone's barreling uphill, probably late for work and a little PO'd, the sudden sight of someone standing in the shoulder (which can still be "off to the side, out of traffic"... I'm being picky, but I live in Lawyerville... lol) is going to be pretty unnerving.
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