Advocacy & Safety - Is this normal?
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10-21-08, 08:01 PM
In my town, if a car in front of you is turning left (no stop sign/light and no seperate turn lane) and stopped to wait for oncoming traffic, you can simply drive in the parking zone of the road without yielding, provided there are no cars parked in the "passing zone." Everyone does this, including police officers. I almost failed my graduation-required driver's ed test after I waited patiently behind the car and my driver's ed teacher docked me huge points for "disrupting the flow of traffic." I'm not sure if everyone is ignorant of the law, but this seems seriously flawed to me.
On to the bike-related information. Today I was riding around a left-turner when a car behind me honks, as he couldn't pass me. He has to yield to my speed (around 22 at the time), put his cell phone on his lap for a moment, and pass me once he was around the turning car. "You know what you just did was terribly illegal?" I told him that if what I did is so illegal, call the cops! Not sure if he did, but I finished my ride pondering the legality of passing in a clear parking zone on the side of the street. What does the all-knowing A&S board have to say?
10-21-08, 08:21 PM
Passing a left-turning vehicle on the right is state-by-state.
A lot of people believe that there is some law that says that cyclists must never delay motorists.
10-21-08, 08:23 PM
He did the exact same thing as you, and you are both vehicles on the road. Regardless of whether it's legal or not (certainly sounds legal by your description), it sounds like you just had a brush with a hypocritical cager who was mad that you made him tap the brakes.
10-21-08, 10:07 PM
I'd never pass on the right on a single-lane road; not in a car, not on a bike.
Not basing this on any particular law, this is only based on my perception of Murphy's law: The moment you pass him, he'll either get fed up with turning left, and continue straight; or make a right turn and nail you.
i.e. "The most improbable maneuver shall be the most probable when it is most inconvenient for you."
As for that driving instructor - typical cager as well.
Passing on the right, when there is only one lane available, but the lane is wide enough to enable the pass to occur, is widely done, and tolerated, but that does not mean it is legal. It is illegal in Texas, as I understand the law.
10-21-08, 11:47 PM
it's not allowed in Pennsylvania, because all driver training is done with a farm tractor with cultivator attached. Thus, as the driver starts to make a left turn, they swing 4' over to the right. You best not be passing on the right.
10-22-08, 08:26 AM
The Florida statute on point:
316.084 When overtaking on the right is permitted.--
(1) The driver of a vehicle may overtake and pass on the right of another vehicle only under the following conditions:
(a) When the vehicle overtaken is making or about to make a left turn;
(b) Upon a street or highway with unobstructed pavement not occupied by parked vehicles of sufficient width for two or more lines of moving traffic in each direction;
(c) Upon a one-way street, or upon any roadway on which traffic is restricted to one direction of movement, where the roadway is free from obstructions and of sufficient width for two or more lines of moving vehicles. (2) The driver of a vehicle may overtake and pass another vehicle on the right only under conditions permitting such movement in safety. In no event shall such movement be made by driving off the pavement or main-traveled portion of the roadway.
Passing on the right is permitted, but not required.
10-22-08, 09:18 AM
The parking area to the right of the turning car is part of the road where parking is permitted. It is not for the exclusive use of parked vehicles.
10-22-08, 09:31 AM
Thanks for some education, all.
10-22-08, 11:37 AM
Thanks for some education, all.
On any issue like this, the first stop must be your state statutes. We all have "common knowledge" about what the law is. Usually it's correct, but on occasion it is very wrong. Find your state statutes and make a bookmark on your computer - when some question comes up about what's legal on the road and what's not, your statutes should be your first stop and with a little effort you will find the right answer.
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