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  1. #1
    Senior Member asmac's Avatar
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    Cyclists must dismount and busybodies

    We have a plague of non-legal, unenforceable "cyclists dismount" signs. These range from 'must dismount' to 'please dismount' and are found where MUPs intersect roads, on long MUP bridges and on boardwalks which are part of an MUP. While they may indicate that special attention is required, they seem mostly to be erected as a kneejerk CYA gesture.

    I universally ignore these signs though I do slow down, defer to pedestrians, avoid my bell and try to be extra cautious. Getting off your bike or walking is a real buzz-kill and seems pointless.

    Normally there is no issue but yesterday three concerned citizens of the busybody persuasion took it upon themselves to lecture me on my transgressions. One old lady stopped me in the middle of a boardwalk to ask if I can read (yes, I assured her, I was consciously ignoring a stupid sign), a man out with his family carefully blocked the way and asked if I was walking when I requested to get by, and an old pony-tailed dude with a cane stood at the bike path entrance of his cul-de-sac lecturing non-dismountng cyclists and taking pictures, apparently to post for online shaming.

    These signs seem to work best as creators of conflict. Are they common?

  2. #2
    ♋ ☮♂ ☭ ☯ -=(8)=-'s Avatar
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    Reoccurring events are what led to a determination that signs like that are put up. Do you think the local Gov. was just sitting around and said "lets buy expensive and unnecessary signs and arbitrarily place them" ? Signs like that are put up for a reason. That reason would most likely be lots of other arrogant cyclists who cannot comport themselves in a civilized manner where making life difficult for peds, en mass. I cannot understand why you ride somewhere where you know it is going to be an issue and purposely disturb peds/people.

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    There's a MUP near me that has two of these signs. One is when you are passing in front of the airport terminal, the other is a steep hill on the path.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Northwestrider's Avatar
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    The signs are not common in my area, but the pedestrian attitude is. Having said that if in a shopping area or forced to use a side walk, I'll dismount and walk. The problem I have with pedestrians is they get (on occasion) bothered when I cycle by on a MUP. Yes I ring my bell, or say excuse me as I approach, but they are talking to their dog or friends and don't hear it. A couple of times I have tried to politely explain that i did try to notify them of my approach, that proved futile. Now I just ring and zing on by.

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    Quote Originally Posted by asmac View Post
    We have a plague of non-legal, unenforceable "cyclists dismount" signs. These range from 'must dismount' to 'please dismount' and are found where MUPs intersect roads, on long MUP bridges and on boardwalks which are part of an MUP. While they may indicate that special attention is required, they seem mostly to be erected as a kneejerk CYA gesture.
    Like these?
    Cycle Facility of the Month

  6. #6
    Senior Member asmac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prathmann View Post
    Like these?
    Yikes! Yes. This makes me feel better - it could be worse.

  7. #7
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    They are here in one of our burbs that built 30 or 40 miles of lovely MUPs along roads which already had wide boulevards.
    Unfortunately, at most of the road crossings, shopping entrances and even seldom used turnouts. they decided CARS are KING here and cyclists are serfs needing to GIVE WAY and walk. HORSEFEATHERS you f-ing imbeciles on council. This has Zero to do with peds. I totally ignored this BS and after a while went back on the road where I still felt harrased by unnecessary road arrows directing straight thru or turn. WTF. They don't want FRAPers either ??? Where there are long turn in/out lanes we are basically stuck with riding the line between the lanes, I don't mind.

    I sympathsize with the OP dealing with those kooks. Is that boadrwalk 2 meters wide or maybe 4??
    The overlying principal of MUPs is SHARING. Peds do NOT own them. You may use half or maybe 2/3ds but must allow free passing. Sure, it is expected to slow down by kids etc. Our extensive river MUP is used by many, including lots of CFers going fast when able. We also have an old steel bridge busy sidewalk just 3 bikes wide. Commuters go 12/ 18 mph past walkers/ tourists etc and zigzag oncommers. No Problem. This is right beside unforgiving steel girders yet. Nobody gets uppity. Mororists are very accomodating here in Edmonton. More bicycles every day.

    Post #2 is all BS, IMO.

  8. #8
    ♋ ☮♂ ☭ ☯ -=(8)=-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53 View Post
    They are here in one of our burbs that built 30 or 40 miles of lovely MUPs along roads which already had wide boulevards.
    Unfortunately, at most of the road crossings, shopping entrances and even seldom used turnouts. they decided CARS are KING here and cyclists are serfs needing to GIVE WAY and walk. HORSEFEATHERS you f-ing imbeciles on council. This has Zero to do with peds. I totally ignored this BS and after a while went back on the road where I still felt harrased by unnecessary road arrows directing straight thru or turn. WTF. They don't want FRAPers either ??? Where there are long turn in/out lanes we are basically stuck with riding the line between the lanes, I don't mind.

    I sympathsize with the OP dealing with those kooks. Is that boadrwalk 2 meters wide or maybe 4??
    The overlying principal of MUPs is SHARING. Peds do NOT own them. You may use half or maybe 2/3ds but must allow free passing. Sure, it is expected to slow down by kids etc. Our extensive river MUP is used by many, including lots of CFers going fast when able. We also have an old steel bridge busy sidewalk just 3 bikes wide. Commuters go 12/ 18 mph past walkers/ tourists etc and zigzag oncommers. No Problem. This is right beside unforgiving steel girders yet. Nobody gets uppity. Mororists are very accomodating here in Edmonton. More bicycles every day.

    Post #2 is all BS, IMO.


    Thanks for making my point better than I could

  9. #9
    20+mph Commuter JoeyBike's Avatar
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    I think signs reading "Foot Traffic Only - Walk With Your Wheels" would be more appropriate. Or is it OK to blast through there on my skates or longboard?
    "For all we know his skills may be excellent, allowing him to ride like an idiot without actually being one." - FBinNY

  10. #10
    ♋ ☮♂ ☭ ☯ -=(8)=-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeyBike View Post
    I think signs reading "Foot Traffic Only - Walk With Your Wheels" would be more appropriate. Or is it OK to blast through there on my skates or longboard?
    We have no-skateboard signage everywhere here in Louisville. In fact, every city Ive lived has had them to some degree. You can be assured, if skaters terrorize peds, real or imagined, those signs will go up where they are.
    Anecdotally, I longboarded in a busy park here in KY, and we were passing roadies!! The GPS said 38mph on one weekends runs I stopped riding them because there is no way to get them stopped quickly. I almost ran into a pick-up truck going above 30 and got the wobbles and an epiphany! Longboarding just isnt for me. At 55 years old, I cant believe I would heal well after eating pavement at 38 mph

  11. #11
    Senior Member welshTerrier2's Avatar
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    Certain driving situations can create a dangerous lack of clarity among auto drivers. Take, for example, multiple cars at a four-way stop, cars entering or exiting roundabouts or perhaps the ordinary, everyday intersection. My suggestion would be to require drivers to exit their vehicles to discuss the situation before proceeding. I think you'll find that good communication is the key to roadway safety.

  12. #12
    ♋ ☮♂ ☭ ☯ -=(8)=-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by welshTerrier2 View Post
    C My suggestion would be to require drivers to exit their vehicles to discuss the situation before proceeding. I think you'll find that good communication is the key to roadway safety.
    That would be AWESOME in places like Florida!!!!! Many seasons of new COPS episodes!!

  13. #13
    Senior Member rebel1916's Avatar
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    Tell em that pestering strangers is pretty dangerous

  14. #14
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    Years ago Mad Magazine had a single panel cartoon showing a sigh such as we see in parks or at beaches.

    No radios,
    No open fires,
    No ball playing
    No running
    No shouting
    No etc,
    No etc.
    No etc.

    Have fun at the beach.

    ------------------------

    More and more these days the list of "No's gets longer, and nobody sees the irony.

    I try to live by the simple concept of No Harm, No Foul, and if anyone gets ruffled feathers, I say "I'm sorry" and keep going.

    Here in NY we do have a few cyclist dismount signs, usually at steep downhills, and on some bridge paths, but so far there's no enforcement except in the most extreme cases. I suspect we have them as part of a CYA policy so the agency involved has a defense in the event of a suit.
    Last edited by FBinNY; 07-13-14 at 04:42 PM.
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    that is because the self appointed intellectual elite know better than you what is best for you. They feel the need to tell you what to do so you don't hurt yourself. It spills into all aspects of life. After all the great unwashed masses need guidance.

  16. #16
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    Virgina Beach has these signs:
    explanation1.jpg

    Looks like you don't have to walk your bike though.

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  17. #17
    Senior Member jputnam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by -=(8)=- View Post
    Reoccurring events are what led to a determination that signs like that are put up. Do you think the local Gov. was just sitting around and said "lets buy expensive and unnecessary signs and arbitrarily place them" ? Signs like that are put up for a reason. That reason would most likely be lots of other arrogant cyclists who cannot comport themselves in a civilized manner where making life difficult for peds, en mass. I cannot understand why you ride somewhere where you know it is going to be an issue and purposely disturb peds/people.
    Regardless of why a local authority decides to erect such signs, and yes, sometimes it really is arbitrary, the signs are meaningless unless they carry the force of law. Yet, as often as not, there is no legal basis for the signs, at least in my experience. If bicycles aren't taken seriously enough for cities to bother complying with the law when attempting to restrict cycling, it should be no surprise that those restrictions receive no more respect than they deserve.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jputnam/collections/72157604835074312/

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    Looks to me the OP has great opportunity for some cycling evangelism. Finding out Why they are so upset and working with them to resolve the issues.

    Perhaps instead of the current signs use ones showing right-of-way sequence. Usually that puts pedestrians above cyclists.

    From posts in this and other threads it looks like a number of cyclists don't understand that pedestrians generally don't have to give way to cyclists. If they do it is because they are being courteous. If they don't so what ? You should never be going so fast or so wild you can't stop and avoid pedestrians.
    It is better to smell the flowers than taste the roots.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by HawkOwl View Post
    From posts in this and other threads it looks like a number of cyclists don't understand that pedestrians generally don't have to give way to cyclists. If they do it is because they are being courteous. If they don't so what ? You should never be going so fast or so wild you can't stop and avoid pedestrians.
    Sharing and self control seem to be difficult concepts for a few cyclists.

  20. #20
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    Our city put them up at every bridge on the MUP. I ignore them because the whole concept of them is asinine. Any rider with a shred of common sense would slow to a walking pace when passing pedestrians in close confines like that.

    I consider it to be a slandering of all cyclists. It implies there is a problem, and its the fault of cyclists. The general sadsack members of the public views it as such and it fuels their anti-cyclist bigotry and gives them the righteous indignation to make an ass of themselves about it.

    I would speculate that the actual problem is walkers and all their method of being oblivious to the world around them. Yet there are no signs telling people not to wear earbuds, not to use their phone, walk single file, keep to the right, keep dogs on a short leash.

  21. #21
    20+mph Commuter JoeyBike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gecho View Post
    I would speculate that the actual problem is walkers and all their method of being oblivious to the world around them. Yet there are no signs telling people not to wear earbuds, not to use their phone, walk single file, keep to the right, keep dogs on a short leash....
    ...pay attention to your surroundings and be polite to other trail users.

    I treat MUPs as any other roadway when I walk on them. Somehow I don't have any problems with other trail users including cyclists, skaters, etc., But when I cycle on those very same MUPs it is a different story.

    We have a couple of bridges in New Orleans that have "Walk Bike Across Bridge" signs. I do not understand how me being TWICE AS WIDE and taking FIVE TIMES AS LONG to get across the bridge is safer. I never, ever walk those bridges. They can throw me in jail if they want, but I will NEVER do it. (Image from the other approach same bridge)
    Last edited by JoeyBike; 07-13-14 at 09:27 PM.
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  22. #22
    Transportation Cyclist turbo1889's Avatar
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    I have yet to encounter any such signs in my travels. I have however had to deal with a few motorists who are under the mistaken idea that cyclists must dismount and walk their bikes through all crossings/cross-walks across "their" road (and more often then not also think cyclists and peds. in the crossing/cross-walks must yield to them and not cross until it won't inconvenience any of them).

    I've educated them as best as possible but unfortunately it is true that whenever they put up stop or yield signs on the path at the edges of the crossing it is true about cyclists having to yield and being "open season" on them while they are in the crossing due to the use of the official stop or yield signage on the path giving roadway traffic right of way over cross-walk traffic. There is legislation on the books to protect pedestrians from that kind of malicious disregard for their safety in belligerent preference for motorists’ mere convenience but unfortunately the same is not true of cyclist who choose to use a bike path or MUP. Something that needs to be corrected both legally and in practice to make such prejudiced backwards implementation of signage to the deliberate malicious danger to vulnerable users illegal to implement and strongly enforced against those local jurisdictions who attempt to implement it anyway.


    That said, in certain situations specifically when:
    ----- A Bike-Path/MUP/etc . . . enters a cross-walk type crossing of a road
    ----- When there is a significant and real issue with wheeled traffic being a danger to peds. in specific areas or spots of a path

    Then I do support the idea of using generic "Slow To Walking Speed" signage with most importantly in smaller type below the main message a logical explanation of the "why" behind the sign being there. Signs like this:


    This sign as standard issue on both sides of the path when it crosses a major road:
    (Along with appropriate yield to path users in crosswalk signage for road users)






    This sign for example at the top of a decent to a hill so described:






    This sign for example in a very busy section of a path with previous problems:







    It is true that there are times and places where people, including cyclists, need to be controlled to keep them from doing significant harm to others or get them to do their part in an equitable public right of way system. But in all such cases you only go as far as is actually necessary and in appropriate relationship to the risk such people misbehaving represents to other innocent users. And its not just cyclists I try to take this balanced attitude towards. On the roads I am of the opinion that the majority of stop signs are unnecessary and overburdensum and should be replaced with yield signs (use a "To Everything, This Means You" sub-text below the yield signs during the transition) and stop signs should be reserved only for the most critical intersections. The yield message is the most important part anyway and I've had more then one motorist who tried to bully me with their vehicle and then make excuse that they did stop at the stop sign but then they jammed on the gas right away and tried to cut in front of me at point blank range and/or run me off the road. In their minds they stopped so its okay that they didn't yield. And its not like peds. never need to be controlled either, to which end I strongly desire most bike paths and MUPs and such to be clearly divided into two or more lanes with direction of travel arrows in standard right side or left side orientation in match with whichever side of the road they drive on in that country and applicable to ALL users so that peds. and other cyclists don't try to take up the whole freaking path two, three, four, or more wide from edge to edge refusing to let anyone else by coming or going. Standard wait for a break in oncoming traffic to pass prototypical applying.


    Long story short, you don't put up a stop or yield sign for path traffic where it crosses a roadway giving preference to motorists’ privilege of convenience and speed to the determent of vulnerable users in path crossings safety and create and "open season" on their very lives. And you don't make them dismount either. But there are indeed very reasonable and legitimate reasons to put up signage directing them to slow to walking speed in some situations to respect the rights of other innocent users and also to make the system work and not have road users who are under legal obligation to yield for the safety of vulnerable path users get surprised by some nutty cyclists flying out into the crossing suddenly at speed from the side and surprising them so they can't fulfill their obligations.
    Last edited by turbo1889; 07-17-14 at 09:19 PM. Reason: A few spelling/grammar/punctuation errors pointed out to me by another member in a PM.

  23. #23
    Transportation Cyclist turbo1889's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dynaryder View Post
    Virgina Beach has these signs:
    explanation1.jpg

    Looks like you don't have to walk your bike though.

    So in other words the majority of swimsuits aren't allowed on that beach and you have to go buy a swimsuit from a Bible thumper catalog (or so as to not pick on one specific religion and to be an equal opportunity offender how about "Koran thumper catalog", heck it doubles as a tent to boot) to use that beach? If I'm reading that sign correctly that looks like what is says, especially if any fundamentalist religion people are there with strong views about modesty. Sign says you can't do anything to offend them. Wonder what they do when both the Bible and Koran thumpers both show up and one is offended by the others mid-day eastern prayer rug and the other is offended by the other not having said rug as well and doing said prayers as well?
    Last edited by turbo1889; 07-14-14 at 12:14 AM.

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    I can think of 2 places where there are dismount signs.
    One is where a MUT ends and there are overlapping barricades intended to restrict access peds and cyclists. The other is a narrow wood bridge over a river. The solution seems obvious, ride when no one else is present, dismount when there are others present. Seems like common sense to me considering the informality and intended use of MUTs.

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    Unfortunately, obvious common sense isn't so common.


    On one hand:
    ----- Many motorists think they have a right to run down anyone that gets in their way and can't comprehend that vulnerable users logically and legally have right of way and they don't have an open license to murder and mayhem.
    ----- Many cyclists on Bike-Paths/MUPs/Side-Walks/etc . . . also believe that slower more vulnerable peds. must get out of their way or suffer the consequences.
    ----- Heck, even some fast peds. runners and joggers will adopt a get out of my way or get run down attitude towards slower peds.

    But on the other hand:
    ----- Many slower more vulnerable users don't seem to get that only when it is necessary for their safety do they have a right to position themselves so as to deliberately interfere with the privilege of speed of other users. This goes across the board to all possible "right of reasonable expectation of safety" Vs. "privilege of speed" combinations:
    ----- ----- Fast Automobile Vs. Slow Bicycle or Ped. on roadway
    ----- ----- Fast Bicycle Vs. Slow Ped. on path
    ----- ----- Fast Bicycle Vs. Slow Bicycle on roadway or path
    ----- ----- Fast Ped. Vs. Slow Ped. on path
    ----- And in some situations it can work the other way around as well, it’s not unheard of for a fast bicycle to pass a slow automobile or a fast ped. to pass a slow bicycle.
    ----- When necessary to reasonably protect yourself from bone-head dangerous moves by faster overtaking users especially when your a vulnerable user you have every right to deliberately position yourself to interfere with their privilege of speed for the sake of your right to a reasonable expectation of safety on the public right of way.
    ------ UNFORTUNATELY, those who understand that seem to conveniently forget that unless it is necessary for safety they have no right to deliberately interfere with others privilege of speed. This applies just as much to:
    ----- ----- The cyclist or a group of cyclist positioning to block things up on 14+ foot wide right side half of a wide roadway (14+ foot width of the right half of a road is physically, logically, and legally the point at which unless the automobile or cycle are wide then normal or the passing speed is excessively high there is enough room for an average width automobile to safely pass an average width cyclist at reasonable passing speed differential with at least minimum safe passing distance without crossing the center line into oncoming traffic)
    ----- ----- To a belligerent ped. who deliberately tries to block a cyclist or group of peds. who walk three or more wide taking up a whole 8+ foot wide path from edge to edge refusing to let anyone get around them coming or going even other peds. sometimes.
    ----- ----- To the motorist crawling along in bumper to bumper traffic who belligerently and deliberately positions their vehicle to keep faster cyclist from filtering up past them.
    ----- Many road riding cyclist especially seem to have forgotten that when other users are legally traveling faster then we are we "take the lane" not as something that is desirable and serves those dirty car people right to get slowed down, but rather something we do because due to insufficient infrastructure we must unfortunately assert our right to a reasonable expectation of safety over others privilege of speed because the infrastructure is such that both cannot be fully accommodated together without cross interference between the two. When possible it is desirable not to interfere with others privilege of speed. Why is it unexpected that some peds. will also do likewise and willfully and unnecessarily interfere with cyclists’ privilege of speed likewise based on a similar attitude on paths?
    ----- It's one thing to assert your rights when necessary. It's quite another to abuse them.

    Both sides of that tug-of-war are outside the bounds of basic logical common sense. And when faced with such aggravations more often then not people go overboard and implement regulations and signage that are not intended to fix the problem in a basic logical common sense manner but rather intended to go beyond that and punish the other side that they are mad at.

    The solution is to get ahead of the game and start implementing the common sense solutions that are limited to only as much control as is necessary before the situation spirals out of control and one side or the other manages to implement draconian controls on the other.



    In the situation of cyclist and pedestrian (and other low speed but still faster then walking wheeled contraptions as well such as roller-blades and skateboards) are mixed together on shared use paths and especially when these paths intersect and cross roadways (very few do not) what we should be pushing for is a "Slow To Walking Speed" legal and signage standards both to protect the rights of slower users from faster users endangering them with inappropriate speed for conditions and also at crossings to ensure roadway traffic has the opportunity to properly yield to path crossing traffic in deference to the right of safety over the privilege of speed.

    That is not unreasonably draconian and is a very reasonable and logical common sense move, and unless that move is made people will get fed up and draconian measures will be implemented instead.

    I should also note that I don't believe that path traffic should always have absolute priority over roadway traffic at crossings. Merely that it should follow the same established vulnerable user right of way protection standards as traditional pedestrian crosswalks which have superior right of way at all non-signal light intersections and at signal light intersections cross-walks do have a walk/don’t-walk light signal that is synchronized to show walk in parallel with the green light and don't walk in parallel with the red light and crosswalk traffic users still enjoy right of way over turning roadway traffic (right on green, left on green, right on read).

    Path crossings at signal light intersections should be set-up identically with go/stop signal for path traffic in synchronization with the main traffic lights and right of way over all turning traffic except for protected green arrow turns sustained just as is the standard for normal pedestrian crosswalks. Currently these standards are not applied to path users as well in many cases and instead their safety has been deliberately and belligerently sacrificed towards a discriminatory anti-logic anti-common-sense standard of automobile roadway traffic always having right of way with their privilege of speed and a virtual open season being declared on the very lives of path users at crossings with them always being held to a standard of being expected to always stay out of the way and if they get hit its their own fault.

    One thing that does concern me though which has even begun to inch into chipping away at even the traditional crosswalk protection vulnerable user standard pedestrians enjoy is that more and more signal light intersections are being equipped with push buttons to activate the pedestrian crossing signal and if the button is not pressed the pedestrian signal always says "Don't Walk" and the provision for a pedestrian "Walk" signal is being pushed to a level of being only an after thought. One would think that this only matters if the button ever gets broke and isn't fixed (which about half of them are that I've had to deal with) but it goes even further then that. Namely that most of the buttons are programmed so that the pedestrian walk signal will only be signaled one full cycle ahead of when the button is pressed. Which means if you walk up to the corner right when the light turns green and push the button just a half second after the light turns green the walk signal will not change until the full 15-seconds to 5-minutes of that green light cycle and then you have the 15-seconds to 5-minute long green light cycle the other way and then finally on the next green light cycle you will finally get the walk signal to light for you. That is deliberate obnoxious belligerent discriminatory programming of the light cycle and its not just that is how the system is set-up because there are lights out there that are not set-up that way. As a result I see more and more peds. (and not without good reason in my opinion) simply completely ignoring the pedestrian walk signals and their buttons and just crossing when the parallel light turns green. For all our sake, especially us cyclists who are even more discriminated against in path crossings then traditional pedestrian crosswalks, that is a developing situation which needs to be corrected. Pedestrian crossing signals should light on every signal cycle as a full part of the traffic signal and equal even superior part. If the push button is even there it should only be there as an additional way to trigger the light not the only way the pedestrian signal ever lights up with the "Walk" signal instead of being perpetually stuck in the "Don't Walk" in haughty belligerence to the subjection of the rights of vulnerable users to the convenience of the privilege of speed !!!
    Last edited by turbo1889; 07-17-14 at 09:05 PM. Reason: A few spelling/grammar/punctuation errors pointed out to me by another member in a PM.

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