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  1. #51
    Senior Member kalliergo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
    A few cyclist had fallen due to the crack earlier in the day. The county put a cop there to direct cyclist away from the hazard but at some point pulled the cop off. Then the cyclist crashed and died.
    Now, there's a perfect plaintiff's case. Did the county settle quickly?
    "What if we fail to stop the erosion of cities by automobiles?. . . In that case, we Americans will hardly need to ponder a mystery that has troubled men for millennia: What is the purpose of life? For us, the answer will be clear, established and for all practical purposes indisputable: The purpose of life is to produce and consume automobiles."

    ~Jane Jacobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities

  2. #52
    Cycle Year Round CB HI's Avatar
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    They settled but I do not believed it was quickly.

    Their fist action was to work on banning outsiders from cycling in the county and later changed it to groups of ten or more.
    Land of the Free, Because of the Brave.

  3. #53
    Senior Member kalliergo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdtindsm View Post
    It did cause counties to consider banning touring events.
    Funny how cultures differ. In France, they'd repave the roads by hand, at night and on weekends, to get a Tour stage to start or end in their town. Hell, they even sacrifice their daughters as podium girls (I heard they have to keep the kids sentenced to the KoM dresses under guard before the presentations).

    And I don't keep up on details of liability sharing between local and state authorities and the Tour of California organizers, but I wouldn't want to try to get re-elected to a county board of supervisors around here after voting to send it away.

    RAGBRAI isn't either Tour, but it's an old and venerable Iowa tradition now. And I would think everyone along the route makes money. Who doesn't like RAGBRAI?
    "What if we fail to stop the erosion of cities by automobiles?. . . In that case, we Americans will hardly need to ponder a mystery that has troubled men for millennia: What is the purpose of life? For us, the answer will be clear, established and for all practical purposes indisputable: The purpose of life is to produce and consume automobiles."

    ~Jane Jacobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities

  4. #54
    Senior Member kalliergo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
    Their fist action was to work on banning outsiders from cycling in the county
    Ha. I'm guessing the local lawyers weren't up on the finer points of Contitutional law, huh?

    and later changed it to groups of ten or more.
    So, now all local commuters need parade permits for those lines of cars every day?

    Who writes the scripts for those guys?
    "What if we fail to stop the erosion of cities by automobiles?. . . In that case, we Americans will hardly need to ponder a mystery that has troubled men for millennia: What is the purpose of life? For us, the answer will be clear, established and for all practical purposes indisputable: The purpose of life is to produce and consume automobiles."

    ~Jane Jacobs, The Death and Life of Great American Cities

  5. #55
    Bicikli Huszár sudo bike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdtindsm View Post
    +1 camilo

    While it would be easy to overlook the hazard of the gap in the direction of travel, it was foreseeable. That the area would have been used by MUP riders susceptible to the hazard increased the responsibility of the designers for the safety of its intended use.

    Without comments on the details of damages claimed, I don't think the claim is frivolous, and would not be inclined to forgo damages simply because $**t happens.

    While McDonalds had successfully defended a number of scalding lawsuits, the suing lawyer was able to show that they were serving coffee at temperatures (190f) above industry norms and higher than the optimum temperature for enjoyment (160). They certainly knew that there was a problem. I don't know if it was part of the suit, but it has been suggested that part of the reason for the high temperatures was to minimize bottomless cups as customers waited for their drink to cool. The size of the award was less because of the severity of injuries than because of the arrogance that MickyD had shown in failing to protect their customers.
    For sure. That McD's case is actually really reasonable when you read the details. McD's and the media did a fantastic job at spinning it as a frivolous lawsuit.
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  6. #56
    Senior Member kookaburra1701's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuteCommando View Post

    *(I looked up the whole McD thing, and it turns out that the woman had not sued for three megabucks initially, but rather sued for medical expenses only, and that only after the crew at that particular outlet refused to supply her with ice water that would have lessened the damage. The jury increased the damages in response to McD’s attempt to vilify the woman. After all was said and done, and after an unpublicized and successful appeal by McD, the woman wound up with having her medical expenses paid plus a small pittance out of the punitive damages. The lawyers (hers and McD’s) got the rest, and McD got the kind of free publicity, where they were portrayed as the victim, that was worth far more than the case cost them)
    The coffee was also so hot that it caused third degree burns to the woman's thighs and genitals, requiring extensive skin grafts. At her age (79) recovery from injury like that is bleak. And McDonalds had persisted in serving coffee at that dangerous temperature (it was their official written policy to serve coffee at 180-190F) despite many warnings after other people had been injured.

    Warning, graphic photo of some of her burns at these links: http://harmfuldruginfocenter.files.w.../mcdonalds.jpg
    http://justicebeforecharity.org/imag...la/stella3.jpg

    To anyone who wants to know more about how the public perception of "frivolous" lawsuits has been shaped by a concerted effort by big business, I recommend this film: http://www.hotcoffeethemovie.com/
    Last edited by kookaburra1701; 05-27-13 at 08:41 AM.
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  7. #57
    Senior Member rydabent's Avatar
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    The McDonalds case was just plain stupid, and using it in this case is comparing apples to oranges. People EXPECT coffee to be hot. Cyclist DO NOT expect that there will be a tire grabbing trap in a railroad crossing.

    Also-----------I agree with the person that said all the PERFECT riders that blamed the cyclist for the accident are out of line. There are any number of reasons why the cyclist may not have seen that gap in the approach.

    As an aside to this, in my state I pay on my property tax bill for rail road safety crossings. It is a stupid tax apparently run thru by legislators paid off by the rail roads. It is supposed to pay for cross arm and lights and even over passes. Things the railroads should be paying for themselves.

  8. #58
    Senior Member rydabent's Avatar
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    Those PERFECT riders that blame the cyclist should note that for her to get her wheel caught in that gap, she was crossing the tracks at the proper 90 degree angle. She was crossing in the proper safe manner.

  9. #59
    Senior Member edotomato's Avatar
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    Let's hope the San Franciscans don't get wind of this.

  10. #60
    bragi bragi's Avatar
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    What a complete idiot. If you're too unskilled to negotiate minor hazards, that's sad, but part of the learning curve. If you want to make other people pay for your ineptness, that's just infuriating. And don't even get me started about the damage this person is doing to the image of cyclists in general.
    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

  11. #61
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    I think the RR's owner is funny.

    "Reactions like that make me regret allowing a right of way"...

    Um, you do know that land was GIVEN to you, for free, and cleared at our costs? "Our" being, the tax payer, and the common knowledge that pretty much all rail lines west of the the Mississippi were gifted to the railroad companies.

    I think the damages are reasonable, assuming the custom bike was actually worth that much. Only $110 in medical bills, sounds like she is asking for the co-pay. She could sue for full cost, or just sic her insurance companies on the RR. Which would he prefer? a $10K settlement, of a $150K settlement with two different insurers (Health insurance carrier, and homeowners/renters insurance carrier)?

  12. #62
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by -=(8)=- View Post
    The hilarious irony here is, some of the ones who insult the loudest about "blaming the cyclist" in other dopey threads,
    are the ones . . . . you guessed it, blaming the cyclist
    That is rather funny, isn't it?
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  13. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by kalliergo View Post
    So, now all local commuters need parade permits for those lines of cars every day?
    ???

    Other than funeral processions, who drives their cars in groups of 10 or more?

  14. #64
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
    . Cyclist DO NOT expect that there will be a tire grabbing trap in a railroad crossing.
    Really? Anyone with any experience knows that railroad tracks can be dangerous, and you need to watch for hazards as you cross them (or just bunny hop them).
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
    Really? Anyone with any experience knows that railroad tracks can be dangerous, and you need to watch for hazards as you cross them (or just bunny hop them).
    There's no bunny hopping over that crack in the pavement.

  16. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by bragi View Post
    What a complete idiot. If you're too unskilled to negotiate minor hazards, that's sad, but part of the learning curve. If you want to make other people pay for your ineptness, that's just infuriating. And don't even get me started about the damage this person is doing to the image of cyclists in general.
    Evidently you haven't read the thread. I suggest you do. Your pronouncement was made by many others several pages ago and several have made sound arguments against it.

    After you read the thread, I hope you post again, but in a way that is part of the dialog.

  17. #67
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    If the rr crossings around here looked that good I'd be thrilled! Downtown around here there is a triple rr crossing that I have been over innumerable times on commuter and road bikes with no incident. It's not perpendicular to the road and it's bumpy and uneven. I take the whole car lane to ride it perpendicular to the tracks direction. The road has moderate traffic and I've never had a problem. I just keep it slow and pay attention.

    I rode the Bicycle Tour of Colorado a few years back. One part of the route had several road crossings of narrow gauge rr tracks. Some were at acute angles to the road direction. They warned all the riders emphatically numerous times to go extremely slow or to walk the bikes over these tracks. They even posted ride marshalls at the rr crossings to slow riders down right there. But still several people just rode on over them and fell or had some incident (I was told by some ride marshalls). I did stop and just lift my bike over them and then rode on.

    Near Delta, Colorado is a nasty rr crossing I saw on a Ride the Rockies route. The tracks were inset at least an inch below metal plates lining the edges of the little "trenches" that the tracks were in. No rider warnings posted around the crossing. I awkwardly bumped through and continued on. I noticed a few people changing flats just after the crossing but didn't think much of it. It was almost to the end of day. That evening I noticed that my rear tire had two deformations on it, the distance apart of the rails. (Had to trash the tire.) Then I realized those people got snakebit flats from hitting the sharp edges where the rails were inset. Next time I ride that I will walk my bike over it!
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  18. #68
    Cycle Year Round CB HI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
    Really? Anyone with any experience knows that railroad tracks can be dangerous, and you need to watch for hazards as you cross them (or just bunny hop them).
    Your post reads as though you have not read the article and do not know the hazard that caught her wheel.
    Land of the Free, Because of the Brave.

  19. #69
    bragi bragi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Camilo View Post
    Evidently you haven't read the thread. I suggest you do. Your pronouncement was made by many others several pages ago and several have made sound arguments against it.

    After you read the thread, I hope you post again, but in a way that is part of the dialog.
    I read the thread before I posted. I thought the cyclist was probably inept, clearly unwilling to take responsibility for what happened to her, and did a grave disservice to cyclists in general by suing. And then I shared my opinion. Quit trying to sneer me down. The counter-arguments you refer to were not convincing to me. Her actions are comparable to someone who breaks his ankle while hiking, and then sues the Forest Service because the trail wasn't completely safe enough to account for his lack of experience and/or coordination, or the existence of simple bad luck.
    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

  20. #70
    Certified Bike Brat Burton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by squirtdad View Post
    The story states " went on the sidewalk to avoid a lineup of traffic from Oaks Amusement Park. She was wearing a helmet and no one was walking at the time on the sidewalk, he said." So this was avoidable by the cyclist by staying on the road. Most likely germane, but who knows with suits.
    Yeah - had something similar happen in Montreal this week. There are several organized rides of the Tour de L'Ile that cross several train tracks. For the event they were covered with carpet to reduce the possibility of any accident. Except that one overly impatient roadie felt that other riders were holding him back and decided to skirt to the outside. As in - outside the designated riding are and outside the carpeted area. Got his wheel caught in the track, flipped the bike and wrote off the rim. Wouldn't have happened if he had stayed on the designated path. And I know that for a fact because I did that section myself as part of the Tour de Nuit - at night - when visibility was a lot more marginal.

    At least in that case the guy was honest enough to bluntly say it was his own stupidity.

    I get to cross 7 different tracks on my commute every day- some at dangerous angles when there's other traffic and compounded by the tracks being slippery in rain. There's no substitute for slowing down or dismounting ocassionally.
    Last edited by Burton; 06-04-13 at 07:46 AM.

  21. #71
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
    Your post reads as though you have not read the article and do not know the hazard that caught her wheel.
    I read the article, and looked at the pic.

    It would be nice if that crack was repaired, but it's an open an obvious hazard, and there are all sorts of cracks, gaps, hooved up areas, and other assorted hazardds around railroad tracks. Irregularities around rairoad tracks are totally to be expected.

    And I could easily bunny hop that crack, as well as the railroad track.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

  22. #72
    Not quite there yet Matariki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
    Irregularities around rairoad tracks are totally to be expected.
    Yes, but this does not mean that we should tolerate flaws in the design or construction that could easily be anticipated to cause harm.

    Nor should we expect any cyclist to be completely aware of all hazards at all times. Let's face it, there are so many competing distractions that even the most experienced of us will miss something occasionally. Sometimes we get bit.

  23. #73
    Senior Member howsteepisit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matariki View Post
    Yes, but this does not mean that we should tolerate flaws in the design or construction that could easily be anticipated to cause harm.

    Nor should we expect any cyclist to be completely aware of all hazards at all times. Let's face it, there are so many competing distractions that even the most experienced of us will miss something occasionally. Sometimes we get bit.
    this points out what this thread is really about - in the first case the railroad pays, in the second the cyclist pays.
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  24. #74
    Certified Bike Brat Burton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matariki View Post
    Yes, but this does not mean that we should tolerate flaws in the design or construction that could easily be anticipated to cause harm.

    Nor should we expect any cyclist to be completely aware of all hazards at all times. Let's face it, there are so many competing distractions that even the most experienced of us will miss something occasionally. Sometimes we get bit.
    So I guess that means sidewalks should be made more cycle friendly - in spite of the fact that cyclists aren't supposed to be there - because thats exactly what went on in this case.

    What next? Cyclists should be able to sue motorosts when they run stop lights and cause an accident because the general public should be aware that most cyclists ignore stop signs and traffic lights so everyone should therefore give up their right of way for them?
    Last edited by Burton; 06-04-13 at 11:35 AM.

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