Commuting - First close call...
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05-21-11, 10:38 PM
I had my first close call today. First off, my subdivision is on top of a hill. When you get onto the main road there is a T intersection. I went out for a leisure ride "24 miles" and im going down one of the hills out of my subdivision and there are 3 cars behind me not too long after I got on the road. The first two drivers were very curtious and they slowed down and gave me my 3 feet. The third guy was a total _____! "fill in the blank" I was on the far right hand side of the road and this road has no shoulder, just rough patches of blacktop. Anyway, the third driver didn't move over at all. The only reason I didn't get hit is that I moved off the side. So here i am on the rough patch of the road going 25, 26 looking control with my back end fishtailing and there is a mailbox supported by pipes right in my path. Luckly i was able to gain control and miss the mailbox by 5 feet.
So what I learned is to take more of that road when hitting the hill and carry and airhorn with me to get the drivers attention.
05-21-11, 11:49 PM
As you noted, taking more (or all) of the lane will help prevent a close pass, and also leave you some safe space to glide into if someone does try to squeeze by. I'm not sure how an air horn would have helped in this case, honking at a car behind you or already buzzing you.
Another technique to keep in mind is to monitor traffic behind you prior to the hill. Sometimes you can slow down a bit prior to the hill to allow followers to pass so no one is behind you when you fly down.
05-22-11, 07:15 PM
You just made me realize that, in fact, a mile is way better than a miss. Glad it turned out OK. I have a few curvy hills I have to climb, and I feel bad for the cars who have to pass me on them. I can't really expect them to match my 3 mph for the 10 minutes (?) it takes me to get to the top. Luckily I have very little traffic on my commute.
05-23-11, 11:01 AM
This is my close call everyday. I am in the right hand lane and I take the lane, but people still think it's fun to whip around me and fly up to the 20 mph curve and slam on the brakes.
Glad to hear you are ok. Sometimes you gotta take off your helmet and put on your "A__hat" to compete with the drivers out there.
05-23-11, 08:41 PM
I was riding on a street here in Denver that had no shoulder, curb or sidewalk. Colorado state law says that a bicyclist may take as much of the rightmost lane as he deems safe. I took about 1.5ft of the lane on the right, and quite a few cars buzzed past me closely enough that I could've elbowed their window. What did I learn? Take the entire lane. After I took the entire lane, everybody in the rightmost lane got in the next lane over to pass me.
05-23-11, 09:23 PM
http://maps.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&ll=43.139278,-88.164318&spn=0,0.021136&t=h&z=16&layer=c&cbll=43.139382,-88.164317&panoid=ewGWPH41NFK1FPpsKUmGDA&cbp=12,7.99,,0,9.8 Here is that hill.
http://maps.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&ll=43.140687,-88.164253&spn=0,0.021136&t=h&z=16&layer=c&cbll=43.140599,-88.164264&panoid=_IlO_l-ZQgpMuS8UbgsC0w&cbp=12,34.35,,0,17.38 This is the spot where i almost met the mailbox, one click forward, you will see it.
05-23-11, 09:24 PM
Links don't work, simply refers to the main google maps page.
05-23-11, 09:28 PM
Thank you all for your support. The biking community is a comfortable one to be part of :D
Alpha, I found the link icon on the top right of the map, not the toolbar address.
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