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  1. #1
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    Ninja killed in San Antonio


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    Senior Member CommuteCommando's Avatar
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    Sad. Half the people I see on my morning commute are ninja. Fortunately it is getting light earlier. Shouldn't be a substitute for a $20 Cat Eye though.
    As much as you paid for that Beemer [Mercedies, Audi, Escalade], I'm surprised it didn't come equipped with turn signals.

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    Cycle Year Round CB HI's Avatar
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    Following assumes the cyclist was not crossing the highway, which does not seem too likely if the mapped location is correct.

    It is a four lane highway with full break down lanes added to each side (some call them shoulders). I doubt that a ninja would have been taking the lane, so how the hell did this woman hit the cyclist regardless of ninja or not. Did she have her headlights off while speeding down the shoulder?

    Article mentions no helmet, lights, reflectors on the cyclist but fails to even remotely note how the lady did her stupid driver trick.
    Land of the Free, Because of the Brave.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
    Following assumes the cyclist was not crossing the highway, which does not seem too likely if the mapped location is correct.

    It is a four lane highway with full break down lanes added to each side (some call them shoulders). I doubt that a ninja would have been taking the lane, so how the hell did this woman hit the cyclist regardless of ninja or not. Did she have her headlights off while speeding down the shoulder?

    Article mentions no helmet, lights, reflectors on the cyclist but fails to even remotely note how the lady did her stupid driver trick.
    You make a very good point.

    Russ

  5. #5
    absent Ferrous Bueller's Avatar
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    We are all at risk on roadways, lights or not.
    I would have assumed that most cyclists are saddened when they hear of another cyclist's death.
    Calling this poor guy a 'ninja' seems more like mockery to me.

  6. #6
    24-Speed Machine Chris516's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuteCommando View Post
    Sad. Half the people I see on my morning commute are ninja. Fortunately it is getting light earlier. Shouldn't be a substitute for a $20 Cat Eye though.
    Nothing is a substitute for, not only riding against traffic. But also, without the proper lighting, and if one chooses to, at night. Not to mention a 50mph road. Essentially(depending on the actual speed of the motorist and the speed of the cyclist), It was a collision potentially at 45-70mph(10-20mph, cyclist; 35-50mph, motorist).

    I am not harping about riding on a road with that speed limit. Just pointing out how it added to the first two 'illegal maneuvers' he was doing.

  7. #7
    24-Speed Machine Chris516's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
    Following assumes the cyclist was not crossing the highway, which does not seem too likely if the mapped location is correct.

    It is a four lane highway with full break down lanes added to each side (some call them shoulders). I doubt that a ninja would have been taking the lane, so how the hell did this woman hit the cyclist regardless of ninja or not. Did she have her headlights off while speeding down the shoulder?

    Article mentions no helmet, lights, reflectors on the cyclist but fails to even remotely note how the lady did her stupid driver trick.
    True, I missed that element about her driving(or lack thereof).

  8. #8
    24-Speed Machine Chris516's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrous Bueller View Post
    We are all at risk on roadways, lights or not.
    I would have assumed that most cyclists are saddened when they hear of another cyclist's death.
    Calling this poor guy a 'ninja' seems more like mockery to me.
    Well, Part of me is saddened, and part of me is disgusted. Because I have three chronic health conditions(two of them congenital), any one of them could kill me almost instantly. I am 'lucky', I am still alive after 45yrs.. Then someone does something like this, which makes my blood boil.

    I wonder if his parents' knew what he was doing, like if he had been riding this way in the past.

  9. #9
    absent Ferrous Bueller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris516 View Post
    Well, Part of me is saddened, and part of me is disgusted...
    I wonder if his parents' knew what he was doing, like if he had been riding this way in the past.
    Who knows?
    Did he live with his parents? Could he afford lights? Did anyone tell him lights were a good idea?
    We don't know anything about this guy except that he was trying to get from A to B.
    Mocking him is no way to start a conversation about bike safety.

  10. #10
    Cycle Year Round CB HI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrous Bueller View Post
    Calling this poor guy a 'ninja' seems more like mockery to me.
    Maybe for some, but for many cyclist here, ninja is simply discriptive to mean "riding at night in dark clothing, no lights and no reflectors". One word vice 11.

    The unfortunate young cyclist may have been a good guy riding home from work or a bad guy riding a bicycle as a lookout for drug dealers.
    Land of the Free, Because of the Brave.

  11. #11
    24-Speed Machine Chris516's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrous Bueller View Post
    Who knows?
    Did he live with his parents? Could he afford lights? Did anyone tell him lights were a good idea? Do we have any evidence other than the driver's word that he wasn't, in fact, using them?
    We don't know anything about this guy except that he was trying to get from A to B.
    Mocking him is no way to start a conversation about bike safety.
    My mention about his parents', was not to mock the cyclist or his parents'. But, To wonder if his parents', even knew he was doing this kind of riding. Even though I am a grown adult, because of my three health conditions, my parents' worry something will happen to me on the road where I will not survive. But I have let them know how, when, and where, I ride.

    I don't ride against traffic, without lights, and on certain roads. They still worry. But I tell them to drop it. Because, I can't focus on their worries, while I am on the road. But at the same time, I don't ride in violation of the traffic code.

  12. #12
    Mmm hm! agent pombero's Avatar
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    some days, some nights
    some live, some die
    in the way of the samurai
    some fight, some bleed
    sun up to sun down
    the sons of a battlecry

    RIP Ninja

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrous Bueller View Post
    We are all at risk on roadways, lights or not.
    I would have assumed that most cyclists are saddened when they hear of another cyclist's death.
    Calling this poor guy a 'ninja' seems more like mockery to me.
    No mockery intended. It is simply a term frequently used on this forum to indicate someone who is difficult/impossible to see at night.

    Russ

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    The ninja is identified....

    http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/loc...ed-4318914.php

    He was a 16 year old kid.

    Russ

  15. #15
    Mmm hm! agent pombero's Avatar
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    Terrible loss. Planet Bike lights should be 100% free for those who need them. Why not have something where $.25 of every tube go towards a fund that pays for PB lights for people in need?

    What if every major online retailer had an option to donate towards a light fund? I'd donate $ every time I made a purchase.What if every LBS had an option to donate towards a light fund? I'd donate $ every time I made a purchase.

    What about you?
    Last edited by agent pombero; 03-01-13 at 07:34 PM.

  16. #16
    24-Speed Machine Chris516's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roushe View Post
    The ninja is identified....

    http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/loc...ed-4318914.php

    He was a 16 year old kid.

    Russ
    sad

  17. #17
    Senior Member howsteepisit's Avatar
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    I would like to know some details of tis tragic event. Looking at google maps, there is a very nice shoulder on the road, so where was the auto and the cyclist when he was struck? WHile it would seem to be poor judgement to be riding "ninja" on any road, there should have been rood on the shoulder to avoid being hit. The story has not yet been told on this one I fear. Since the driver is reported to not have been ticketed nor charged, it seems to me that the cyclist was out in the traffic lanes, but that doesn't feel right either.
    Recycle, Reclaim, Reuse and Repair
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  18. #18
    Senior Member dougmc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by agent pombero View Post
    Terrible loss. Planet Bike lights should be 100% free for those who need them.
    I've seen a number of campaigns to light up cyclists in Austin.

    Invariably, they involve giving away a bunch of lights to cyclists who may or may not need them, and the lights they do give are the cheapest they can find (and certainly, not anything by Planet Bike.)

    In general, that means that they take 2016, 2032 or 357 button cell batteries and 1) put out very little light and 2) are kind of expensive to replace the batteries on (unless you order replacement batteries from China.)

    At the very least, any such project needs to give lights that take AAA or AA (better) batteries. (Or be rechargeable, but that drives the cost up.) And of course a set of batteries needs to be included.

    And unfortunately, even if you do give somebody a light with batteries, once the batteries die, they may not care enough to replace them. (Especially if they're something weird like a button cell.) Or care enough to even turn them on, especially if they're also salmon, riding against traffic ("why do I need a light? it doesn't help me see, and I can see any car coming at me and get out of the way ...")

    I don't know what the answer is, beyond dynamo lights, which drives the price way up and are attractive to thieves ...

    Maybe instead of giving away light offer to add large reflective strips to their bikes? White up front and on the sides, red in back? Not as good as lights, but zero maintenance and cheap.

    One thing that would be cool is if the police give a ticket for no lights ($147 here I think) and the cyclist pays that ... the court kicks back $40 of that into some decent lights for the offender (which are handed out when the fine is paid, or the cyclist is mailed a coupon if he pays by mail.) I don't see it happening, but it would be nice.
    Last edited by dougmc; 03-01-13 at 10:51 PM.

  19. #19
    Not quite there yet Matariki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuteCommando View Post
    Fortunately it is getting light earlier.
    I find this time of year to be very troublesome. My morning commute now starts in the dark but quickly grows lighter. Though it is still 15-20 minutes away from sunrise, there are many cars that choose to run without lights, presumably because they can see the road. The trouble is that you can't see them from any distance and when there are other cars running lights, they disappear unless one is adept at interpreting shadow patterns. Although I don't like to ride in the dark, I actually feel safer doing so than in crepuscular periods.

  20. #20
    Mmm hm! agent pombero's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dougmc View Post
    One thing that would be cool is if the police give a ticket for no lights ($147 here I think) and the cyclist pays that ... the court kicks back $40 of that into some decent lights for the offender (which are handed out when the fine is paid, or the cyclist is mailed a coupon if he pays by mail.) I don't see it happening, but it would be nice.
    I think this is a great idea.

  21. #21
    Senior Member gcottay's Avatar
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    "Ninja" makes a safety point I happen to agree with but dehumanizes the cyclist. In my opinion, the habit demeaning our fellow humans is even more pernicious than riding without lights.
    George
    Laissez les bon temps rouler

  22. #22
    Carpe Velo Yo Spiff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by agent pombero View Post
    Terrible loss. Planet Bike lights should be 100% free for those who need them. Why not have something where $.25 of every tube go towards a fund that pays for PB lights for people in need?

    What if every major online retailer had an option to donate towards a light fund? I'd donate $ every time I made a purchase.What if every LBS had an option to donate towards a light fund? I'd donate $ every time I made a purchase.

    What about you?
    Most of them would still fail to use them. One guy I ride with carries some freebie blinkies that Biketexas gives out. Cheap but highly visible red and white blinkies that simply attach anywhere with elastic. He offered a set to a teenager we encountered on a night ride. The young man refused them.

    Ongoing education of the more casual cyclists is needed. On this issue as well as obeying traffic laws and riding safely.
    2000 Bianchi Veloce, '88 Schwinn Prologue, '88 Trek 900, '92 Trek T100, 2000 Rans Tailwind

  23. #23
    Commander, UFO Bike K'Tesh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by agent pombero View Post
    Terrible loss. Planet Bike lights should be 100% free for those who need them. Why not have something where $.25 of every tube go towards a fund that pays for PB lights for people in need?

    What if every major online retailer had an option to donate towards a light fund? I'd donate $ every time I made a purchase.What if every LBS had an option to donate towards a light fund? I'd donate $ every time I made a purchase.

    What about you?

    It would be nice, but as the people who ride bikes routinely after dark without lights seem to have an invincibility atti-turd (<-started as a funny typo), all the free lights in the world wouldn't convince them to add one to their ride.

    All over the US, we have dollar stores that sell LED flashlights for a buck. Even these lights are brighter and longer lasting than the old flashlights that we had when I was a kid. I doubt that many would be completely unable to afford that.

    The idea to add a coupon or a "complementary" bike light set to fines for cyclists riding without lights seems like a good one. I'd add that once convicted of riding without lights (unless you can demonstrate that they were on the bike, but inoperable) fines should double. The excess could be used to be put into a fund to educate riders (Middle School Rider's Ed? Taking offenders to the morgue for an autopsy?) as to their rights and responsibilities as users of the roadway.

  24. #24
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    I don't know any more than what the news has said about the exact circumstances of the crash. I will say that I've seen a rider on a BMX bike riding down the middle left turn or "suicide" lane of a similar road just a few miles from there. He wasn't just clowning around in the road during a break in traffic. He was headed somewhere in a straight line and using the turn lane as a through lane, as if it were the bike lane.

    At least one of the stories stated that this cyclist was in the "left lane" when he was hit. Whether that means the left turn or suicide lane, or the left through lane, it's not a good choice.

    If young cyclists are making this kind of mistake, one way to reduce the number of crashes might be an education push. I mean, I don't understand why anyone would think it makes sense to ride that way, but it seems that some people do, for some damned reason. So maybe we need to put some money and time and work into telling people something we believe to be obvious.

    At the same time, I have become convinced that too many drivers are gunnng it down the road while assuming the way is clear, and anything in their way, such as a vehicle that is slowing to make a turn, is an aberration and not supposed to be there. It's as if they're conditioned to think of surface roads and even parking lots as freeways. Just aim the nose at Point B and hit the gas, like going into hyperspace. That's not driving! There must be a way to communicate this to drivers.
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  25. #25
    24-Speed Machine Chris516's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GrouchoWretch View Post
    I don't know any more than what the news has said about the exact circumstances of the crash. I will say that I've seen a rider on a BMX bike riding down the middle left turn or "suicide" lane of a similar road just a few miles from there. He wasn't just clowning around in the road during a break in traffic. He was headed somewhere in a straight line and using the turn lane as a through lane, as if it were the bike lane.

    At least one of the stories stated that this cyclist was in the "left lane" when he was hit. Whether that means the left turn or suicide lane, or the left through lane, it's not a good choice.

    If young cyclists are making this kind of mistake, one way to reduce the number of crashes might be an education push. I mean, I don't understand why anyone would think it makes sense to ride that way, but it seems that some people do, for some damned reason. So maybe we need to put some money and time and work into telling people something we believe to be obvious.

    At the same time, I have become convinced that too many drivers are gunnng it down the road while assuming the way is clear, and anything in their way, such as a vehicle that is slowing to make a turn, is an aberration and not supposed to be there. It's as if they're conditioned to think of surface roads and even parking lots as freeways. Just aim the nose at Point B and hit the gas, like going into hyperspace. That's not driving! There must be a way to communicate this to drivers.
    He wasn't in the left-turn lane, unless, he got in the left-turn lane from the previous light. Because he was riding against the traffic flow.

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