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Advocacy & Safety Cyclists should expect and demand safe accommodation on every public road, just as do all other users. Discuss your bicycle advocacy and safety concerns here.

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Old 11-29-08, 12:46 PM   #1
Sonicfish
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I did exactly the wrong thing...

I was out for a ride this morning with a group of 4 guys and was almost run over by a passing cube van. The section of road of road I was on is marked with a bike lane we were all in single file. The driver drifted over to the point where I was up against the curb and barrier on my right and the cube of the van was a couple inches off my left shoulder. They guys behind were screaming that it was close.. ah, yes it was.

I caught the van at the next light and pounded on the passenger side window and flipped the driver the bird, followed by a string of expelatives. Nothing became of it, fortunately, but as I rode on I began to think, "What the hell was I doing!". It could have easily grown to a bigger situation that I wouldn't be prepared for. Not to mention in a city that just recently had a taxi driver in an altercation with a cyclist drive ahead 30 feet stop throw his car in reverse and back over the cyclist. The cyclist lost his leg,.. the cab drove off but turned himself in 6 hrs later. Awfully good of him.

Cooler heads prevail..
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Old 11-29-08, 01:01 PM   #2
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It is so easy to let your emotions run away with you in a situation like this. In Oregon there is a mechanism by which citizens can originate a traffic complaint, even if a law enforcement officer did not witness the infraction. In your situation, since there were witnesses, I would have just had my day in court.

Another alternative that I have used is when the motorist is operating a commercial vehicle. A sternly worded rebuke to the company is very effective, since if there is a tort the company will be paying the compensation.

I admit I have also confronted motorists. It can feel good, but keep in mind there is a small but real possibility that if you do this you may face the wrong end of a semiautomatic weapon or worse.
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Old 11-29-08, 01:27 PM   #3
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Closest thing we have in Ontario to what you have in Oregon is the ability to file a complaint with the police and they will send a letter to the offending driver that goes on their record. At least that's the it works if the victim is in a car. Not sure if it applies to incidents involving a cyclist.. guess I should find out for next time!

You have to keep more on guard I think in the winter months, since drivers aren't really expecting you out there. That's excusing the drivers, but it's a defensive stance for the cyclist.
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Old 11-29-08, 01:47 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Sonicfish View Post
"What the hell was I doing!".
I had a similar reaction last week. Not pretty, but now you probably can keep your cool for the next 1000 knuckleheads.

Don't be too hard on yourself for being human.
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Old 11-30-08, 10:54 PM   #5
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I know the feeling. I tend to get temperamental with people passing too close, as well. It's difficult to avoid an outburst, especially if you get an adrenaline rush from a close call. Trouble is, I've noticed if I show anger, sometimes it's just the reaction they want, and then they laugh at me. Aargh.
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Old 12-01-08, 08:16 AM   #6
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..."What the hell was I doing!"...
That's just your hockey temper in the heat of the moment.
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Old 12-01-08, 10:09 AM   #7
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A PI (even the cheapie on line ones) can often trace the plate number.

A snickers bar dropped in the tank will melt in, sometimes leaving enough residue to contaminate a cleaned tank.

Valve grinding compound squeezed into the AT fill tube and washed down will do well. Also a hit with the top end if squeezed liberally into the oil filler port.

In the alternative, a civil suit for assault can be an eye opener for some.

Confrontation isn't generally a good thing unless one is fully prepared for the consequences. Which can be criminal, civil, medical, or fatal.
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Old 12-02-08, 03:12 PM   #8
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A PI (even the cheapie on line ones) can often trace the plate number.

A snickers bar dropped in the tank will melt in, sometimes leaving enough residue to contaminate a cleaned tank.

Valve grinding compound squeezed into the AT fill tube and washed down will do well. Also a hit with the top end if squeezed liberally into the oil filler port.

In the alternative, a civil suit for assault can be an eye opener for some.

Confrontation isn't generally a good thing unless one is fully prepared for the consequences. Which can be criminal, civil, medical, or fatal.

Destruction of property is a juvenile response.
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