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  1. #1
    Fredly
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    Cherokee Schill found guilty - plans to appeal

    Jessamine judge decides Nicholasville Road bicycle commuter violated law | Jessamine County | Kentucky.com

    Cherokee Schill who was ticketed 3 times for FRAP violations has been found guilty. She apparently plans to appeal.

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    Expected, and disappointing.

    Hopefully the backlash for the cyclists of the community will be minimal.

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    Senior Member Clyde1820's Avatar
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    If the slower vehicle was a car, I highly doubt they'd have ruled the slower car was lawfully required to exit the roadway in unsafe spots just to sooth the spleen of trailing vehicles.

    Yet, that's what the ruling states in this case, for the cyclist. Doesn't appreciate how dangerous it can be to continually move off and onto the pavement, particularly on certain roads where the "shoulder" areas are terrible combinations of ruts and other impediments to remaining in the saddle.

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    The article said that, in KY, it's "right side of highway" and "highway" includes the shoulder (which seems very unusual to me).

    In most other states (as far as I know), it's "roadway" and doesn't include the shoulder.

  6. #6
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    The article said that, in KY, it's "right side of highway" and "highway" includes the shoulder (which seems very unusual to me).

    In most other states (as far as I know), it's "roadway" and doesn't include the shoulder.
    So are slow motor vehicles also required to ride the shoulder? No doubt farm equipment does, but what about other motor vehicles.

    I understand there are rumble strips on the shoulder... so clearly the shoulder is differentiated from the travel way... by both the fog line and rumble strips.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    So are slow motor vehicles also required to ride the shoulder? No doubt farm equipment does, but what about other motor vehicles.

    I understand there are rumble strips on the shoulder... so clearly the shoulder is differentiated from the travel way... by both the fog line and rumble strips.
    False analogy. This case was about a bicycle specific statute. Additionally, bicycles and farm equipment do not share the same characteristics.

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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    So are slow motor vehicles also required to ride the shoulder? No doubt farm equipment does, but what about other motor vehicles.
    You have no basis for assuming that bicyclists are treated differently that other drivers in the same situations/places in this story. Anyway, it's the relative speed (and width) of the vehicle that matters (not what it's used for). That is, in the KY law, it appears cyclists are supposed to ride in the shoulder (on the right side of the "fog line")

    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    I understand there are rumble strips on the shoulder... so clearly the shoulder is differentiated from the travel way... by both the fog line and rumble strips.
    The "travel way" distinction doesn't appear to exist in the relevant KY bicycle law (which is what I pointed out before).

    There could be more than enough room to be left (or the right) of the rumble strip. We also have no idea whether rumble strips are implicated in all three citations.

    Riding across rumble strips shouldn't be very dangerous and often there are regular gaps.

    The issue of the condition of the shoulder is moot in states that only require cyclists to ride at the right of a roadway (that excludes the shoulder).
    Last edited by njkayaker; 09-13-14 at 07:15 AM.

  9. #9
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VTBike View Post
    False analogy. This case was about a bicycle specific statute. Additionally, bicycles and farm equipment do not share the same characteristics.
    Is there not also a statute that requires motorists to pull over when they are followed by 5 or more vehicles? I wonder how often that happens on this road.

  10. #10
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    Living in KY, I support her, but I wish they (good guys) used different reasoning in the case than debris.
    Its a cyclists responsibility to make sure their equipment and skill level are adequate for where they are riding.
    With a shoulder that big, saying debris "might" pose a hazard is not reasonable in my opinion.

  11. #11
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    You have no basis for assuming that bicyclists are treated differently that other drivers in the same situations/places in this story. Anyway, it's the relative speed (and width) of the vehicle that matters (not what it's used for).


    The "travel way" distinction doesn't appear to exist in the relevant KY bicycle law (which is what I pointed out before).

    There could be more than enough room to be left (or the right) of the rumble strip. We also have no idea whether rumble strips are implicated in all three citations.

    Riding across rumble strips shouldn't be very dangerous and often there are regular gaps.

    The issue of the condition of the shoulder is moot in states that only require cyclists to ride at the right of a roadway (that excludes the shoulder).
    But in this case they are saying that the shoulder IS part of the roadway... yet it is clearly differentiated by rumble strips.

    Yes you are correct in your other statements that we really don't know the condition or frequency of the rumble strips in this situation. But apparently they do exist, thus the shoulder is NOT the same as the traveled way.

  12. #12
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by -=(8)=- View Post
    Living in KY, I support her, but I wish they (good guys) used different reasoning in the case than debris.
    Its a cyclists responsibility to make sure their equipment and skill level are adequate for where they are riding.
    With a shoulder that big, saying debris "might" pose a hazard is not reasonable in my opinion.
    I tend to agree... I mean at any time on any road a motorist might also encounter debris such as thrown tire treads, chunks of wood, and any other thing that may fall on the road... and they have to deal with that situation as they encounter it.

    Rumble strips however are not debris and certainly mark that part of the road as different. I have encountered rumble strips that were cut square trenches... very difficult to bike over. I have also encountered road shoulders that were nothing more than rough rock with a sprayed layer of tar... also very difficult to bike over. On the flip side, I have seen rumble strips that were cut in such a manner as to leave about a two foot clear section in the center of the shoulder, which was easy to negotiate on a bike.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    But in this case they are saying that the shoulder IS part of the roadway... yet it is clearly differentiated by rumble strips.
    No, the rumble strips are in the shoulder, which is part of the "highway".

    It appears cyclists are required to use the shoulder. We don't know whether other vehicles have the same requirement.

    No one is saying cyclists have to ride on the rumble strip.

    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    Yes you are correct in your other statements that we really don't know the condition or frequency of the rumble strips in this situation. But apparently they do exist, thus the shoulder is NOT the same as the traveled way.
    I know you have rumble strips near San Diego. Do you really have problems dealing with them?

    Again, no one is suggesting to ride in them.

    That there are rumble strips somewhere near by doesn't establish that there isn't enough room to ride in the shoulder.

    "Traveled way" is generally understood to exclude the shoulder. The relevant KY law is talking about riding in the shoulder.
    Last edited by njkayaker; 09-13-14 at 07:29 AM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    I tend to agree... I mean at any time on any road a motorist might also encounter debris such as thrown tire treads, chunks of wood, and any other thing that may fall on the road... and they have to deal with that situation as they encounter it.
    KY DOT uses short ones that do not have sharp transitions, i.e. no corners. They are narrower than those in Vermont, I know that . . .
    Another thing she has going against her is that Nicholasville is very 'provincial' for want of a better term. Trying to get a populace on board with bike commuting while they are still mourning the loss of fins on Caddy's is not going to happen easily

    ::EDIT:: A lot of smaller, medium speed KY rural two-lane roads have the rumble strips in the middle stripe too. So, if you are making a left turn from one of these roads, you are going to have to cross them too.
    Last edited by -=(8)=-; 09-13-14 at 07:30 AM.

  15. #15
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
    No, the rumble strips are in the shoulder, which is part of the "highway".

    It appears cyclists are required to use the shoulder. We don't know whether other vehicles have the same requirement.

    No one is saying cyclists have to ride on the rumble strip.



    I know you have rumble strips near San Diego. Do you really have problems dealing with them?

    Again, no one is suggesting to ride in them.

    That there are rumble strips somewhere near by doesn't establish that there isn't enough room to ride in the shoulder.
    It all depends on the design of the rumble strips... they vary dramatically by area. As I stated above some can be big chunks cut out of the shoulder... I have seen these run diagonally across the entire shoulder. Some can be a series of shallow grooves right at the fog line, others can be the same grooves cut two to three feet into the shoulder area.

    As you pointed out, we don't know what she was encountering.

    The bike I ride most often has 1.5 inch wide tires... I chose these to avoid things like cracks in pavement, the lip at the gutter pan and indeed even certain rumble strips and some forms of gravel. I can also ride on some packed dirt roads.

    My other bike has very narrow 23 c tires... I only ride that bike on roads I know are smooth.

    My third bike has balloon tires... I can ride it just about anywhere, but it's weight limits where and how far I ride it.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    Is there not also a statute that requires motorists to pull over when they are followed by 5 or more vehicles? I wonder how often that happens on this road.
    Not that I could find. If my cursory research is indeed correct, this is an irrelevant question. It's also not what she was charged for.

    A couple of points that are well worth mentioning from this case:
    1) Using an expert witness that has bias is never a good idea. A bicycling educator is someone who wants to promote bicyclist. Therefore, this expert witness was biased. (Note: People tend to think "bias" is bad. It's not. You SHOULD be biased about many things. But the most effective expert witnesses are ones who are not biased about the subject matter they are testifying about.)
    2) Look at this from a non-bicyclist's perspective. They are going to take two things from this article: a) this bicyclist broke the law; and b) this bicyclist says she does not care about breaking the law and will continue to do so. Ask yourself, is this effective advocacy? Notice that she did not say, "This verdict tells me that we need to advocate for a change in the law."
    Last edited by VTBike; 09-13-14 at 07:39 AM.

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    Here is a photo of the bicyclist from the second news story that was linked. The fact that a camera was there and that the photo just happened to make it into the news story suggests that this was at least in part a publicity stunt.

    BIKECOMMUTER1.jpg

  18. #18
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VTBike View Post
    Here is a photo of the bicyclist from the second news story that was linked. The fact that a camera was there and that the photo just happened to make it into the news story suggests that this was at least in part a publicity stunt.

    BIKECOMMUTER1.jpg
    Never seen such a Wide rumble strip...
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGukLuXzH1E

    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
    Never seen such a Wide rumble strip...
    It is wide. But it does not appear to be deep and judging by the shadow of the photographer there does appear to be more than trivial space on the other side of it.

  20. #20
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    Strange . . . The rumblers lining 65, 71 and 264 around Louisville are much narrower than that. I guess counties use varying widths?
    Those in the picture are what I encountered outside of Rutland Vermont. They were harsh to cross!

  21. #21
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VTBike View Post
    Not that I could find. If my cursory research is indeed correct, this is an irrelevant question. It's also not what she was charged for.

    A couple of points that are well worth mentioning from this case:
    1) Using an expert witness that has bias is never a good idea. A bicycling educator is someone who wants to promote bicyclist. Therefore, this expert witness was biased. (Note: People tend to think "bias" is bad. It's not. You SHOULD be biased about many things. But the most effective expert witnesses are ones who are not biased about the subject matter they are testifying about.)
    2) Look at this from a non-bicyclists perspective. They are going to take two things from this article: a) this bicyclist broke the law; and b) this bicyclist says she does not care about breaking the law and will continue to do so. As yourself, is this effective advocacy?
    All expert witnesses have bias. Having sat through some interesting trials I can tell you that this is quite obvious, and the reason either side chooses their own expert witnesses. (but this is somewhat beside the point... )

    The breaking the law part is problematic... I try to ride in a manner that is co-operative... but indeed sometimes that means taking the lane where there is no other way... such as on the local 35MPH boulevard near my home that is lined with parked cars. I have three choices there... either ride on the sidewalk as some slow cyclists do; ride in the door zone... generally not a wise idea; or take the right most lane of the 2 lanes that run either way. At my typical 17-18MPH speed, the sidewalk is really not an option. The door zone is not safe, so I take the lane... and occasionally encounter the wrath of some maladjusted driving public.

    If there is an area outside of the traveled way, that I can safely ride (never mind debris... unless it is loads of broken glass or similar) I will ride on the shoulder or out of the way.

    Bottom line it comes down to being co-operative while still remaining safe. Taking a lane to make a political statement is just an invitation for problems... and I try to avoid that situation.

  22. #22
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
    Never seen such a Wide rumble strip...
    BINGO! They really do vary by area. We honestly cannot just say rumble strips are all the same.

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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    The breaking the law part is problematic... I try to ride in a manner that is co-operative... but indeed sometimes that means taking the lane where there is no other way...
    That is the difference. This bicyclist appears to insist on taking the lane whether it is necessary or not to make a political statement. She made her own decision and now she is incurring the natural and probable consequences of her decision.

  24. #24
    Super Moderator tractorlegs's Avatar
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    It's a disappointing decision, but I'm proud of her for planning an appeal and not giving in.

    The intent of the statute she's supposedly breaking is for 2-lane roads, where a slow moving vehicle would be dangerously blocking traffic, and passing may be hazardous (don't you think?). The pictures show me that the highway in question has two lanes each direction:

    BIKECOMMUTER1.jpg

    . . . and therefore should not apply. On the road in question, a cyclist creates an inconvenience, not a danger; on a two lane road it might be dangerous, but on this road? No.

    Like I said in another thread, politicians and judges should be required to commute to work on a bike for a week to give them a greater (more realistic) understanding of what they're looking at when cases like this come up.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by tractorlegs View Post
    The intent of the statute she's supposedly breaking is for 2-lane roads,
    I'm sorry, are you aware of a part of the statute that limits its applicability to two-lane roads? Maybe I missed it.

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