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Old 10-24-08, 01:38 PM   #1
*Scuba
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Please watch out for each other, we already have cars to contend with.

As cyclist we should try to watch out for each other. Out of the three accidents that I have had this year, two of them involved other cyclists.

The one other accident that I had was a car backing out of a parking stall in a parking lot not looking behind him before he started to pull out. I wasn't able to stop in time and got hit, luckily for me he was just backing up and the speed was relatively slow. I only had a few minor bruises. This was back in August, since it was pretty minor with no damages to my bike I just rode off. Plus I kind of knew the guy.

Then about a month ago, I was stopped at a red light at the bottom of a hill. Suddenly I get hit from the back, at first I thought it was a car that hadn't stopped in time, I turn around and it was a guy on a mountain bike. He was looking down at his iPod. Luckily for me he hit me and my bike on the left, nothing was damaged. I could tell he was pretty embarrassed about the whole thing. The thing was, what if I wasn't there waiting for the light to change and he just sailed on into the intersection? Since nothing was damaged and hurt except for that guy's ego, I just rode off once the light turn green.

Finally a couple of days ago, I got ran into from the rear by another guy on a bicycle. We were going up a moderate hill (Ontario street, from 1st to 10th in Vancouver, BC). I think he was drafting me, the thing was at an intersection there was a four way stop. I slowed down and since there were cars in and at the intersection already I stopped. That was when I got bumped. I see plenty of cyclist that don't stop for redlights and stop signs and whilst I don't approve, it is not my skin on the line. Myself, I always stop, the thing to keep into consideration here is don't expect others to ride how you would ride.

Look out for each other out there, we have enough to watch out for already. The motor vehicles, j walkers and car doors. Lets not start taking each other out as well.

I also cringe every time I see people riding with over lapping front and rear wheels. This happens mostly when a group of rider has been bunched up by a red light and when the light turns they all just take off without being aware of where the other riders are in relation to them.

Be careful out there, bruises heal and skin grows back but there are some injuries that the body just cannot recover from.
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Old 10-24-08, 02:06 PM   #2
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In the third incident, try using a stop hand signal before slowing. Might work to avoid a collision, provided the tailgater at your back end is paying attention (as opposed to the idiot in incident #2.)

-Kurt
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Old 10-25-08, 10:50 PM   #3
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In the third incident, try using a stop hand signal before slowing. Might work to avoid a collision, provided the tailgater at your back end is paying attention (as opposed to the idiot in incident #2.)

-Kurt
I was thinking about what you said, using a hand signal before slowing. I will admit responsibility for dropping the ball on that one. Normally I signal most of the time, I guess I just got distracted by the motor traffic in front of me and lost a part of my situational awareness.

Keep in mind however that even if you do signal well in advance that it is not a guarantee that nothing will go wrong. Earlier in the year I had two close calls. First incident was at a round about. I had signal that I was going to turn left. Even as I was leaning to start my turn I had continued to signal, then a lady on a road bike tried to pass me on my left. I had to swerve to avoid a collision, it was pretty lucky for the both of us that neither of us ended up eating asphalt. The most incredible thing was that she was the one who ended up shouting at me and acted all indignant about the situation. I just shook my head, completed my turn and rode off.

Then another time, I had to split a lane since I had to turn left. I shouldered checked, yes there was a white mini van but it was about 30 meters back and there was plenty of room. So, I proceeded to move into the lane, I signaled "left". When I realised that I couldn't complete the turn in one smooth action as predicted due to on coming traffic, I signaled "stop" and proceeded to slow down before coming to a stop in the intersection. This was when the driver of the white mini van started honking at me, then rolled downed his window, drove up to my right hand side and proceeded to call me a "Jackass, what were you trying to do". I told him that I was making a left hand turn, and since I had to wait for the on coming traffic to clear first, I had to wait. Then he said "Why didn't you shoulder check, all you did was stick your arm out". I was like "uuhh...", then he drove off and I completed my turn and went home. I think he wasn't really paying attention at all, but even if he is in the wrong if he had rear ended me. He would have been the one walking away from the incident.

Anyhow, look out for each others. Watch everything around yourself (we need eye on the back of our heads as well) and keep safe.
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Old 10-25-08, 11:09 PM   #4
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wow dejavu saw a guy run into a another biker as he was getting off his bike onto the sidewalk today, he was doing the same exact thing as MR ipod. the guy with the track bike was pretty pissed at the one he hit because he wrecked his wheel even though it was his fault, i managed to help the other guy out by finding him a spare wheel and tire even though it was just a 24"
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Old 10-25-08, 11:53 PM   #5
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A mirror could have at least warned you about two of those instances. I'm loving my take-a-look.

Ride safe.
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Old 10-25-08, 11:58 PM   #6
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Then about a month ago, I was stopped at a red light at the bottom of a hill. Suddenly I get hit from the back, at first I thought it was a car that hadn't stopped in time, I turn around and it was a guy on a mountain bike. He was looking down at his iPod. Luckily for me he hit me and my bike on the left, nothing was damaged. I could tell he was pretty embarrassed about the whole thing. The thing was, what if I wasn't there waiting for the light to change and he just sailed on into the intersection? Since nothing was damaged and hurt except for that guy's ego, I just rode off once the light turn green.
Something very similar happened to me, a guy was drafting me while looking down at his ipod and hit me on the rear wheel as I was turning right. Except that in my case, I went flying and landed on my knee, resulting in nerve damage.
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Old 10-27-08, 12:37 PM   #7
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I don't know if this is especially a Vancouver thing but of the three closest calls I've had in the last couple of years, two have been the result of other cyclists riding unsafely. The worst was a roadie blowing a stop sign as I was heading north downhill and at speed on Cypress. He blows into the road directly in front of me, then sees me and slams on the brakes totally blocking my path. Oncoming traffic left me very limited escape options.

Incidents like this and others related here are far more prevalent in the summer months it seems. And much as I like the warmer weather and seeing more cyclists on the road, over the years I've really come to dread "June is bike month".
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Old 10-27-08, 12:47 PM   #8
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Was out riding with my 21 year old son yesterday... came up to a stop light and dutifully stopped. The cross traffic turned out to be a cyclist.

If I had taken the chance to simply glance and go, as so many cyclists do, we would have collided.

This was actually somewhat ironic as we three cyclists were the only traffic at the moment... I think the light just defaults to turn green on that main road we were crossing.

Sure demonstrated the need to obey traffic signals though.
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Old 10-27-08, 12:57 PM   #9
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don't expect others to ride how you would ride.
That's good advice, and I wish more people would keep that in mind. I haven't been rear ended by any cyclists (yet), but I've come close. Where I ride there tend to be a lot of college students bombing through intersections and I've caught a few of them by surprise by actually stopping at a red light.
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Old 10-27-08, 01:03 PM   #10
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Regarding hand signaling before stopping... I often find it difficult to do unless I know well in advance that I'm going to slow down. Signaling takes a second or so out of the time I have to brake. I can brake on the rear wheel in the meantime but the rear wheel is not nearly as effective as the front. Sometimes I don't have that much time, so I don't signal.

Or maybe I just have to get better at it. I don't know.

Maybe I should switch my brakes: left rear, right front.
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Old 10-27-08, 01:07 PM   #11
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Regarding hand signaling before stopping... I often find it difficult to do unless I know well in advance that I'm going to slow down. Signaling takes a second or so out of the time I have to brake. I can brake on the rear wheel in the meantime but the rear wheel is not nearly as effective as the front. Sometimes I don't have that much time, so I don't signal.

Or maybe I just have to get better at it. I don't know.

Maybe I should switch my brakes: left rear, right front.
Try Yelling "Stopping".
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Old 10-27-08, 02:14 PM   #12
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Maybe I should switch my brakes: left rear, right front.
That's the way I have it set on nearly all my machines.

-Kurt
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Old 10-27-08, 11:36 PM   #13
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I have my brakes set up left/rear and right/front as well. For the sole reason that I can better control my bicycle if I have to signal. That and also I am right handed.

Sometimes things happens too fast for us cyclist to signal if we have to stop in an emergency or hurry. Had two other close calls tonight. Some one on a fixed gear/ single speed road bike blew a stop sign and I almost ran into him/her. No lights or anything, it was a little pass 20:00 (8:00pm) already and really dark. The street lights on the street that I was traveling on at the time for some reason were off. I knew there was another cyclist (again, no lights) behind me, I had just passed him. There was no way that I could have signaled for the guy in the back and stop in time. It was only one or the other, luckily for me the cyclist in back had enough room to stop as well.

Just as I had thought that I was home free, I had a cyclist take a corner the wrong way around a round about almost collide with me two blocks from my first close call. He was shouting at me "Watch where you are going dumbass!". I was mightily confused, I was going straight through and he was making a turn, the wrong way!? Oh and this guy also was not using any lights.

I personally think that cyclist going the wrong way around a round about is right up there with running reds and stops in terms of the danger they are placing themselves in. These are little round about in the side streets, it is going to be 2 seconds of difference but a whole lot safer doing it the proper way. Not to mention that I see cars and motor traffics cutting the round abouts like that all the time, if a cyclist does a head on with one of those then no more riding.

Last edited by *Scuba; 10-27-08 at 11:42 PM.
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