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  1. #1
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    First crash on my commute.

    I try to swallow this one since I don't crash racing and it is hard to take when I crash on my commute. I was at the Westside bike path in NYC, near the Chelsa Piers, around 9:30 pm. I was riding home. I saw this f--king golfer crossing the bike path not looking for traffic. I yelled out "heads up!" I think golfers have a slower reaction time. He didn't even look to his right, that was where I was coming, until I was 20 feet away. I knew this dumbf--k won't yield and so I veered to my left to go around him. As stupid the stupid does, he walked back. That was it. I ram right into him at 18 mph. His golf bag took the impact and I was stopped dead. I fell to my left and scraped my knees and dented (slight one and some scratches) my Dura Ace 10 speed shifters, the top part. I was so pissed I just stood there. I didn't want to talk to this dumbf--k. Checking over my bike and realized nothing was broken or scratched up. He tired to help me up. Anyway, he was walking away and telling me I was ignoring the crosswalk. I told this d--k he wasn't looking where he was going and I called him a dumbass golfer.

    On my way to the 3rd Ave and Union street some inner city kid telling me to slow down because she needed to talk to me, around 9:45pm now. I was like WTF and get away from me. I just kept a good distance from her in case she and her accomplices trying to pull something on me like knocking me off the bike and stealing my bike.

  2. #2
    www.mtbkanata.com mtbkanata's Avatar
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    Hehe, I've had two crashes this year.. not nearly as cool as yours though.. mine where both Cap'n crashes...

    I find that MANY pediestrians will cross without looking... I hate when they wait, then wait, then wait, THEN go.. by then you're right there! ARGH.. so frustrating!

    Glad to hear you and your bike are okay!
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  3. #3
    Commuting Horrorshow wheezl's Avatar
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    That blows! The west side bike path is full of idiots though. I started taking 6th/8th to work and Broadway home and I have fewer close calls.

    Glad you are ok. Peds are hard to judge because they have sudden direction changes. I usually always let them go ( since the last time I wiped out avoiding some dumb ones anyway )

  4. #4
    2-Cyl, 1/2 HP @ 90 RPM slvoid's Avatar
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    Damn, that sucks, I try to stay off the bike paths like that. How fast were you going? You can usually go much faster on the streets if you find a good avenue. Did you have lights? I usually have my 16 watt beam on and I flash the aux. 11 watter to catch attention if I'm coming up on someone, it usually works, I can beam em from almost 100ft away.

  5. #5
    militant commuter
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    Sorry to hear about your crash, you sound okay though, just shaken, I hope that is it. I hope no one minds that I put in this letter and response from the hudson river park trust, the Org. that runs the park but not the Westside path as I found out. I tried a drippy nice approach, and at least got a response.


    -----Original Message-----
    Sent: Wednesday, May 18, 2005 9:56 AM
    To: HRPT - INFO
    Subject: Bike Path near miss

    Hey HRPT,
    I had something rather disturbing happen to me last night on the
    bike path. I was southbound Around 10:30p just where the path curves to the
    right around a granite block wall that makes up the southern edge of
    pier that has the Nomadic museum on it. A blind curve, the southbound
    lane is on the inside of the curve and sight distance is limited. On
    this corner, coming at me, (Northbound) in the Southbound lane, is a
    HRPT PARKS Dept., electric car- with its lights off. There was no
    northbound traffic for this vehicle to avoid. I stopped the two men in
    the car and asked what they were thinking, and the immediate response
    was, "These are the cars they give us, we are instructed to not turn on
    the lights till 1 am." I asked if the driver thought it was okay to
    drive in the wrong lane with out lights, and he repeated his statement.
    I appreciate the HRPT not driving gas powered one and a half lane wide
    jeeps on the path, the reason I am on the Bike Path in the first place
    is to avoid cars, but having the electric cars, at running full tilt
    with no lights on in the wrong lane, seems like a pretty bad idea. I
    have talked to the Parks enforcement officers before about pedestrians
    and dog walkers on the bike path, especially when there is a
    functioning sidewalk next to the Path. My questions have been met with
    responses such as, "We can't ask the Peds to not walk on the path" and
    the like. It seems to me that the Parks officers are powerless to do
    anything close enforcing the "No Peds on the bike path" signs that are
    ignored by Peds, dog walkers, taxis and cars. This officer was
    implying he was doing as he was told, I believe him, but for the wrong
    side of the road bit.
    BUT I have hope that The HRPT can get the patrols to not drive
    in the wrong lane around blind curves at night with no lights, I understand
    the electric cars may not be able to power lights and motors for such
    extended periods, but for very few dollars, HRPT could use technology
    employed by the vehicles that so happily use the gorgeous Westside Bike
    Path day and night - invest in bike lights and rechargeable batteries
    and light their vehicles at night. I will even research the items for
    you if you like.

    Thank you in advance for your response,

    (Me)

    Reply recieved July 6, 2005

    We are sorry for the delay in responding to your email. The Hudson
    River Park Trust definitely does not have a policy of telling either its
    own staff or the Parks Enforcement Patrol (PEP) officers who patrol the
    park to keep vehicle headlights off until 1 am. We were concerned when
    you brought this matter to our attention, and have instructed our staff
    and PEP officers that they should be using their headlights after
    nightfall. Nearly all of our electric vehicles have lights, so this
    should not be an issue.

    In the future, if you observe something like this again, we would
    appreciate your bringing the matter to our attention. Any details you
    can provide on the driver of the vehicle would be helpful. We want
    people to feel safe on the bikeway and in the park.

    With respect to your comment that PEP officers are not allowed to tell
    pedestrians to walk on the esplanade instead of the bikeway, you should
    know that the bikeway was built with federal transportation money and is
    technically not part of the park. It is instead owned by the NYS Dept.
    of Transportation (DOT) and it functions as an alternative
    transportation corridor. I have contacted DOT to confirm that we have
    interpreted their requirements correctly with respect to our enforcement
    policies; however, based on our current knowledge, the officers are
    correct that they cannot enforce a "no pedestrians on the esplanade"
    rule.

    Sincerely,

    Hudson River Park Trust

  6. #6
    aspiring dirtbag commuter max-a-mill's Avatar
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    what is it with golfers? some older guy carrying not one but two empty golf bags (one on each side to make him super-wide) nearly took me out on my way to work this morning. guy just cuts out into the street in a casual stroll as i am about 20feet from him. i jam on my breaks and start yelling. then he does this cool shuffle in the middle of the street so i have no idea whether to go right or left around him. finally i just pick right and shoot the gap. luckily, i made it, and never looked back.
    - the revolution will not be motorized -

  7. #7
    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    Sorry to state the obvious- I can't avoid a stretch of dedicated bike paths for part of my commute, and I swear it is more dangerous than the road.

  8. #8
    RT
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    Dude shoulda had a cart...

  9. #9
    34x25 FTW! oboeguy's Avatar
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    I'm not sure what I find more aggravating, stupid drivers or stupid peds. It's not like it's "I'm on the bike, you all suck" attitude: when I drive (rare, thank goodness, though reasonably well and legally) or walk, I got the same exact "WTF is wrong with these people" feeling.

    It's pretty pointless to get annoyed though, because, as I discovered a long time ago, most of the worlds problems happen for one main reason: people are stupid.

    I agree, though, that it's a good idea to get the #%!@ing peds off of the bike path. Anybody ever play the game Spy Hunter? I think we should install little buzz saws on our axles to take out peds like the bad guy cars in Spy Hunter.

    Back to the OP's situation... good call there, writing in about the problem. Sounds like the guys in the electrocart were, surprise, just plain stupid. WTF, no lights at night? It's illegal for cars on roads, so if the path is considered "an alternative
    transportation corridor" the law should apply to them too.
    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Order
    Quote Originally Posted by sknhgy
    I do not want to be associated with the kind of riders that come through my neck of the woods on weekends, dressed in superhero costumes
    Do they wear capes?
    ---

    http://www.cycopaths.net/

  10. #10
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    Let me just tick all of you off. The pedestrian was crossing the bike path. The accident was the bicyclist's fault. You ask for accommodation on the street, but you won't accommodate slower traffic crossing a bike path. legal traffic, I might add. With differences in relative speed come responsibility. He didn't have to yield. The bicyclist did.

    Did you injure him? You should be paying for his injuries. Think about it.

  11. #11
    Senior Member peterm5365's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MisterJ
    Let me just tick all of you off. The pedestrian was crossing the bike path. The accident was the bicyclist's fault. You ask for accommodation on the street, but you won't accommodate slower traffic crossing a bike path. legal traffic, I might add. With differences in relative speed come responsibility. He didn't have to yield. The bicyclist did.

    Did you injure him? You should be paying for his injuries. Think about it.
    I have to agree here. I'd also add that you were going too fast for that section of the bike path. Tons of peds. If you are in a car you can't barrel into peds if they jaywalk, same when you're on a bike. Just like cars you have no right to get where you are going without stopping or slowing down. No wonder people think bicycles are a quality of life issue in NYC.

  12. #12
    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oboeguy
    I'm not sure what I find more aggravating, stupid drivers or stupid peds. It's not like it's "I'm on the bike, you all suck" attitude: when I drive (rare, thank goodness, though reasonably well and legally) or walk, I got the same exact "WTF is wrong with these people" feeling.
    Trouble is peds always have the right of way... and it is really that bright to be riding 18mph on an MUT?

  13. #13
    All Bikes All The Time Sawtooth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by R600DuraAce
    On my way to the 3rd Ave and Union street some inner city kid telling me to slow down because she needed to talk to me, around 9:45pm now. I was like WTF and get away from me. I just kept a good distance from her in case she and her accomplices trying to pull something on me like knocking me off the bike and stealing my bike.
    Unfortnately, you are probably right for not slowing for the kid. Too bad things have to be that way.

    Sorry about your accident man. I cannot tell from your post if the golfer was in a cross walk or not. I do have a concern, however, that if we expect people in crosswalks to yeild to cyclists, we are effectively refusing to give them the right of way that a crosswalk was designed for. This guy might be on a golfer forum right now complaining about some crazy cyclists "racing" along the multi use path so fast that he could not avoid a collision with inevitable pedestrians and then cussing him out for the collision.

    As both a ped and a cyclists on multi use paths, I fully expect cyclists to be traveling at such a speed that they can avoid a collision with my family if we should choose to stop for any reason. Personally, I rarely ride the multi use path because I cannot go as fast as I would like to without endangering someone else.

  14. #14
    Just riding andygates's Avatar
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    Damn bike paths. Ain't safe for fast, sensible cyclists. Kids and old ladies, sure, and scaredies, but not sensible people. Learn: use the road from now on.

  15. #15
    2-Cyl, 1/2 HP @ 90 RPM slvoid's Avatar
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    Bike paths are fine, just be extra alert, keep speeds down, and have really really good brakes. I can jam to a full stop at 20 mph in about 20 ft if I had to on my commuter, even in the rain (go discs).

  16. #16
    militant commuter
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    The West Side bike path is not multi use. Unless otherwise posted, it is bike and rollerblade only. Crossing peds have right of way yes, but there are so many peds on the path that after a while, You have to ignore the peds. (BTW for you non NYers there is a huge sidewalk next to the path, away from traffic, most often on the water = much more pleasant place to walk)

  17. #17
    34x25 FTW! oboeguy's Avatar
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    18mph is a very reasonable speed there, as long as peds aren't being stupid. In fact, that's probably the speed I'll cruise at in that area. I will always slow down for peds in the crosswalks there, but I very little tolerance for the morons who don't understand the huge-a55 painted bike / 'blade signs on that section, peds on the other. I mean really, WTF is wrong with you people? The funny thing is, the good peds who use the crosswalks try to cede right of way to bikes. <shakes head> I have no problem with peds jaywalking in that section, mind you, but I do with the dumb ones like the OP encountered.

    Good brakes are definitely a good idea.
    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Order
    Quote Originally Posted by sknhgy
    I do not want to be associated with the kind of riders that come through my neck of the woods on weekends, dressed in superhero costumes
    Do they wear capes?
    ---

    http://www.cycopaths.net/

  18. #18
    Senior Member eblaska's Avatar
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    Why do you have dura ace on a commuter? :] **** happens and by the way golfers do suck. I ride the beach path all the way home and no one looks when the go from beachside to the parking lot side and during the summer it's hectic I feel like I'm riding in the traffic in NYC, one day it will come when I center punch a surfer
    It's all about commuting on the single speed & being nerdy.

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  19. #19
    Dominatrikes sbhikes's Avatar
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    Sorry to burst your self-righteous bubble, but pedestrians always have the right of way, even if they do something illegal or stupid. If they do something illegal or stupid then they can get a ticket, too.
    ~Diane
    Recumbents: Lightning Thunderbolt, '06 Catrike Pocket. Upright: Trek Mountain Bike.
    8.5 mile commute. I like bike lanes.

  20. #20
    aspiring dirtbag commuter max-a-mill's Avatar
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    wow, surfers could be worse than golfers... a guy with a longboard could really block a path!
    - the revolution will not be motorized -

  21. #21
    Commuting Horrorshow wheezl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sbhikes
    Sorry to burst your self-righteous bubble, but pedestrians always have the right of way, even if they do something illegal or stupid. If they do something illegal or stupid then they can get a ticket, too.
    Yep. But in NYC a motorist can usually say "I didn't see them" which for some reason is a valid excuse here (if not anywhere else in the country)

    On your bike, always defer to the braindead ped.

    I come close to hitting the midtown jaywalkers about once a week. People that don't bike in NYC (or other Huge Nasty City) have little concept of the charging herd that jumps off of the sidewalk when you don't happen to have a cab or delivery van right on your ass keeping them on the corner.

    Of course, I digress.

  22. #22
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    I trained, race, and commute on my race bike. Is an Orbea Lobular with Dura Ace 10 speed and Powertap SL wheel. I even wear my team kit as well. That day I was feeling good since I wasn't tired by the end of the day even though in that morning I did a 30minutes TT interval test. 18mph wasn't fast since I was bearly at my recovery zone. Tail wind??? That bike path isn't so bad on weekdays, especially in the morning and evening (that's the time I commute). It gets really bad during weekends afternoon and later in the day. Just to give you an idea. Using the bike path and taking all the way from the west side, I save over 20 minutes than taking the 6th Ave and through CP. The worst part of my commute is crossing the Brooklyn bridge. Pretty much every ped crossing there is braindead. They will cross over the bike lane and taking pictures. It got so bad one time that for every ped on the bike path I would scream out and curse at them. A lot of them are non-English speaking tourists and they probably don't know what the f--k I was screaming about. Sometimes, I will just scare them by having my left or right elbow brazing against theirs. They basically leave little more for me to pass in the first place. It gets to you commuting in big cities like NYC.

  23. #23
    2-Cyl, 1/2 HP @ 90 RPM slvoid's Avatar
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    Why don't you take like 1st or 3rd ave to go uptown? You can hit some pretty hairy speeds with the cars, especially when you go into that tunnel around 30th street or somewhere up there, it's like being on a highway. Much faster than the bike path.

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    Because I work in the upper westside, 86th street. BTW, I have to keep my speed and intensity in check since I use my commute as a recovery ride. I don't go blasting at 23mph. Usually around 17 mph. With a tail wind, 19 to 20 mph the most. Spinning the small ring.


    Quote Originally Posted by slvoid
    Why don't you take like 1st or 3rd ave to go uptown? You can hit some pretty hairy speeds with the cars, especially when you go into that tunnel around 30th street or somewhere up there, it's like being on a highway. Much faster than the bike path.

  25. #25
    2-Cyl, 1/2 HP @ 90 RPM slvoid's Avatar
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    You can take a similar route you take now, when you cross the brooklyn bridge, going down to the bike path, just make a right before you get to the path and take hudson, it turns into 8th avenue, which should take you straight up to 86th. I took the bike path once to go visit my gf when she went to Columbia.U but it got a little crowded and the next few times, I went up 8th avenue, it was pretty quick. In traffic, I was hitting 23mph on my mtb coasting half the time, I haven't been back there on my roadie since she stopped going to school but I did drag my heavy ass commuter roadie up 1st (which to my recollection had slightly less traffic than 8th) and since the avenues are mostly windless, 20 is pretty easy, especially in traffic.
    20mph in the day time on the path, I can do but at night, it gets hairy having to worry about all the people and stuff you don't see.

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