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Old 09-08-07, 01:06 PM   #1
kill.cactus
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Warning: Seriously Dangerous Driver In South Eastern Michigan

A WARNING TO ANYONE IN THE REGION OF SOUTH EASTERN MICHIGAN:

I was biking eastward on Cavanaugh Lake Road, before its intersection with Pierce Road, just west of Chelsea, MI. I came upon a particularly bad section of road and needed to merge to the middle of the lane for about 10 meters. A greenish-grey Jeep Cherokee (newer model – 2005 or later) drove up within feet of me and laid on its horn for several seconds, startling me. It swerved around me dangerously and I gave the driver the finger for a few seconds, infuriated. It stopped in front of me and the driver lowered his window. He was in his early 20s, Caucasian male wearing a white shirt and jeans (I would find these details out soon enough). He had a brown haired Caucasian woman sitting in the passenger seat and a child in the back. Usual angry yelling ensued from him. I surprised myself with how articulate I was, citing Michigan vehicular code pertaining to cyclists and refuting his claims that he was “protecting my ****ing wife and kid from g** a** idiots.” This infuriated me. I barked to him “I on my bike am endangering your family? Sir [and yes, I always addressed him as “sir”] you are the one who is at fault here. Not only did you nearly run me off the road, but your crazy maneuvers put you, your wife, and your child in danger. YOU ARE USING YOUR VEHICLE AS A WEAPON.” He proceeded to use every derogatory synonym for “gay” he could think of. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing – remember he is supposedly protecting his family. I looked him in the eye and said “I feel bad that your wife and kid have to see you like this.” He opened his door and started threatening me. Suddenly I felt a little less bold and dismounted put my bike in between him and myself. Still though I stood strong and said “I’m not looking for a fight. If you take a step towards me you lower yourself in the eyes of your family, and you’ll regret it once I call the cops.” He cursed at me several more times and sped off. I DIDN’T GET HIS LICENSE PLATE NUMBER.

I talked to people who were riding the same route as me and asked them if a man matching his description in a greenish-grey Cherokee gave them trouble. No one said anything. I’m very disappointed that I lost my temper and yelled at him AND didn’t get his license number. I am proud that I did not curse at him or his family once, and that I was polite in my language (aside from the volume).

I left the county sheriff a message and when she or a worker calls me back, I shall detail the event. I strongly hope that either he will be known for behavior like this, or that when he DOES assault a cyclist in the future that my description will tag him with yet another complaint.

DO NOT LOSE YOUR TEMPER LIKE I DID. GET THE LICENSE EVERY TIME. And if anyone has trouble with this man, message me on the forums and we can appeal our case to the police as two or more individuals.

Thanks.
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Old 09-08-07, 01:19 PM   #2
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Note: I was not on a commute. I was on a 60~mile rec. ride when this happened. But I feel it is important to warn commuters about this car/driver.
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Old 09-08-07, 01:30 PM   #3
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Carry a small digital camara with you when you ride, Im sure after you snap a few pics of vehicle, driver, and plates and submit them with a letter describing what happened (be sure to have it all noterized) people might start to realize that the roads are changing Hopefully soon we cyclist will become the majority, and the motorist will be the minority I hate to classify but I think this is a good time to do so
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Old 09-08-07, 01:51 PM   #4
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a cell phone camera may even be good enough to capture the plate - he may think you're calling the police as well.
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Old 09-08-07, 05:40 PM   #5
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You did good bub.
15 years ago I was the guy in the Jeep. And since he had the only eye witness there he was just hoping that you would fight him. Because no matter what the outcome his wife would have told the story in his favor, "after all officer, if the cyclist wasn't looking to assault my husband he would not have stopped his bike in front of our Jeep and opened the drivers side door!! *tears*"
It took an 8 year prison sentence to wake my ass up, maybe this guys family will be lucky... anyhow.
Just smile and know that you ruined his day by doing nothing more than existing.
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Old 09-08-07, 05:50 PM   #6
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gun...you need a gun...shoot them before they step out of their vehicle. preemtive strike.
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Old 09-08-07, 06:14 PM   #7
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I had a similar incident last year. I was chased down by a driver who was upset because I yelled at him when he almost hit me as he flew around a corner. He got out of his car and got in my face, threatening to kick my a**. Well, I managed to talk him down---but now I carry pepper spray. Next jerk who gets out and comes toward me is getting sprayed. Possibly stomped, but definitely sprayed.
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Old 09-08-07, 06:15 PM   #8
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You did good bub.
15 years ago I was the guy in the Jeep. And since he had the only eye witness there he was just hoping that you would fight him. Because no matter what the outcome his wife would have told the story in his favor, "after all officer, if the cyclist wasn't looking to assault my husband he would not have stopped his bike in front of our Jeep and opened the drivers side door!! *tears*"
It took an 8 year prison sentence to wake my ass up, maybe this guys family will be lucky... anyhow.
Just smile and know that you ruined his day by doing nothing more than existing.
Wow -- you've got stories to tell...
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Old 09-08-07, 06:38 PM   #9
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I swore at a driver once who went through a stop sign. He came after me and told me I should never speak to anyone like that.
I had a hard time figuring out why running someone over was ok but swearing was not.
I was only seven.
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Old 09-08-07, 08:22 PM   #10
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i am in AABTS and skipped the ride today or I would have been going past cavanaugh lake today too. Sorry you had to deal with this candidate for anger management class.

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Old 09-08-07, 08:30 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by kill.cactus View Post
A WARNING TO ANYONE IN THE REGION OF SOUTH EASTERN MICHIGAN:

I was biking eastward on Cavanaugh Lake Road, before its intersection with Pierce Road, just west of Chelsea, MI. I came upon a particularly bad section of road and needed to merge to the middle of the lane for about 10 meters. A greenish-grey Jeep Cherokee (newer model – 2005 or later) drove up within feet of me and laid on its horn for several seconds, startling me. It swerved around me dangerously and I gave the driver the finger for a few seconds, infuriated. It stopped in front of me and the driver lowered his window. He was in his early 20s, Caucasian male wearing a white shirt and jeans (I would find these details out soon enough). He had a brown haired Caucasian woman sitting in the passenger seat and a child in the back. Usual angry yelling ensued from him. I surprised myself with how articulate I was, citing Michigan vehicular code pertaining to cyclists and refuting his claims that he was “protecting my ****ing wife and kid from g** a** idiots.” This infuriated me. I barked to him “I on my bike am endangering your family? Sir [and yes, I always addressed him as “sir”] you are the one who is at fault here. Not only did you nearly run me off the road, but your crazy maneuvers put you, your wife, and your child in danger. YOU ARE USING YOUR VEHICLE AS A WEAPON.” He proceeded to use every derogatory synonym for “gay” he could think of. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing – remember he is supposedly protecting his family. I looked him in the eye and said “I feel bad that your wife and kid have to see you like this.” He opened his door and started threatening me. Suddenly I felt a little less bold and dismounted put my bike in between him and myself. Still though I stood strong and said “I’m not looking for a fight. If you take a step towards me you lower yourself in the eyes of your family, and you’ll regret it once I call the cops.” He cursed at me several more times and sped off. I DIDN’T GET HIS LICENSE PLATE NUMBER.

I talked to people who were riding the same route as me and asked them if a man matching his description in a greenish-grey Cherokee gave them trouble. No one said anything. I’m very disappointed that I lost my temper and yelled at him AND didn’t get his license number. I am proud that I did not curse at him or his family once, and that I was polite in my language (aside from the volume).

I left the county sheriff a message and when she or a worker calls me back, I shall detail the event. I strongly hope that either he will be known for behavior like this, or that when he DOES assault a cyclist in the future that my description will tag him with yet another complaint.

DO NOT LOSE YOUR TEMPER LIKE I DID. GET THE LICENSE EVERY TIME. And if anyone has trouble with this man, message me on the forums and we can appeal our case to the police as two or more individuals.

Thanks.
You might want to look into getting a camera: (helmet)


Helmet Camera
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Old 09-08-07, 09:38 PM   #12
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I've always wanted to beat the living crap out of someone with my bike. My bike is light enough to swing around... with sharp edges and all. This guy would have been a great candidate.

Skip a camera on your helmet. You should put a turret on your handlebars.
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Old 09-08-07, 10:34 PM   #13
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Wow -- you've got stories to tell...
You've got no idea, really.
I am... was, the kind of person that everyone on here hates. That's why I come off as being a jackass alot to people, because I tell it like a person on the "other" side.
15 Years ago I would have fist-fought a nun and spit my RedMan wad out my truck window at a cyclist.
Now I have a wife and kid and have spent a great deal of time thinking about what I used to do and why. I even give talks to local "troubled" youths and such, sort of a penance I suppose, for all the things I did that I never got caught doing. Funny thing is, for the teenage kids now-a-days, it seems like a badge of honor to have been locked up... stupid.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not proud of my past, but I use those experiences to make me (and hopefully my son) a better man.
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Old 09-09-07, 04:32 PM   #14
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i am in AABTS and skipped the ride today or I would have been going past cavanaugh lake today too. Sorry you had to deal with this candidate for anger management class.

JAck
Woah, judging by your stable of bikes, I'd have assumed you're in the AA Velo Club
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Old 09-09-07, 04:34 PM   #15
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You've got no idea, really.
I am... was, the kind of person that everyone on here hates. That's why I come off as being a jackass alot to people, because I tell it like a person on the "other" side.
15 Years ago I would have fist-fought a nun and spit my RedMan wad out my truck window at a cyclist.
Now I have a wife and kid and have spent a great deal of time thinking about what I used to do and why. I even give talks to local "troubled" youths and such, sort of a penance I suppose, for all the things I did that I never got caught doing. Funny thing is, for the teenage kids now-a-days, it seems like a badge of honor to have been locked up... stupid.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not proud of my past, but I use those experiences to make me (and hopefully my son) a better man.
Hey, I don't wish death to people like you used to be. I just hope that they change their ways like you've done.

Thanks
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Old 09-09-07, 04:38 PM   #16
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I was sorely depressed to hear you didn't get his license plate. Better luck next time, people like that need their vehicles impounded.
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Old 09-09-07, 10:36 PM   #17
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Had a similar experience a few weeks ago, cruising down 44th in GR, and some dip shot out of a parking lot directly in front of me, I locked them up and tried to head behind his van, almst went down and put my hand out to keep from crashing into it, slapped it pretty hard and kept on going, I was in a pretty good mood that day, so was going to ignore the whole deal, but he looked in the mirror then slammed into reverse (clipped my shoulder with the mirror) and started screaming about me touching his van. I explained that in the first place he pulled out in front of me, and if I was in my truck or on my motorcycle I would NOT have even attempted to miss him, and that the ONLY reason I didn't hit him then was because I was on my GOOD bike, and ifhe wanted to push it we could call the cops, and I'd have a better chance then him proving a case because of the bruise on my shoulder, he got more irate and took his shirt off while saying something about kicking butt (few inches taller than me and 50-60lbs more, but pudgy not muscle) I just leaned my bike against the signpost, stood my 5'6"/145 pound self up straight and laughed at him, he said 'just don't let it happen again', jumped back in his truck and took off.

I'm normally the easiest going dude you'll run into, my street name for years was mellow, not one to just roll over and play dead, it almost takes concentrated effort to tick me off, but that guy managed it.

in keeping with the warning, there's also someone in a grey caravan out by lowel that likes to see how close he can get to bikes, crossed paths with them 3 or 4 times this summer.

ken.
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Old 06-24-08, 07:24 PM   #18
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Isnt there anything all of us cycle can do? It sometimes just seems like everyone that does not ride is trying their best to keep us off the road. I have the road commission plowing the side of the road and getting dirt all over the little bit of shoulder I do have to ride on. It seems like these michigan roads are for cars only. the only nice thing we have around here is Hines drive which is great. But to get to work, forget it. I have 17 miles one way and in the morning its not bad, but in rush hour I sometimes dont feel safe. It no wonder no one around here rides bikes. I hope gas prices go up 10 fold.

Im trying to be more "green" and do a good thing. I dont want to be dependent on gas. I guess I need to sell my house and move 2 miles from work. We need a LARGE organized group with A LOT of energy to charge LANSING! (or whatever your capital is.)
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Old 06-24-08, 07:36 PM   #19
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Old thread. With gas now at $4+ per gallon and even the great unwashed getting the idea that we're in deep ****, I've had fewer problems with nasty drivers. They're beginning to think, 'what if that were me', for the first time I think.
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Old 06-24-08, 07:49 PM   #20
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I vote for carrying, what else, a taser. 2nd choice, helmet cam with portable DVR to show the cops -after you kick his butt- that you had absolutely no choice in the matter.

Then pay a visit to the guy in the hospital, bring him a chocolate bar and a Calvin and Hobbes book to read while he recuperates.

Then move on.
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Old 06-24-08, 07:53 PM   #21
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You might want to look into getting a camera: (helmet)


Helmet Camera
I've been using a helmet camera for a couple of years now. Recently I sold some video I captured to a local TV station. They used my video for a drivers education class training video. I was using a cheap ATC-2K video camera but with the funds made from the sale of the video I purchased the following camera setup.
http://shop.helmetcameracentral.com/...OV100-ULT.html



I never ride my bicycle or motorcycle without my camera!
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Old 06-24-08, 10:21 PM   #22
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sweet. can't wait to see some videos.
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Old 06-25-08, 03:41 AM   #23
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+1 on the helmet camera.

A number of UK and US cyclists use them as an evidence gathering too. They've helped when the motorist inevitably tries to blame the cyclist for doing something stupid even if the opposite is true, .e.g., bicyclist initially blamed by driver motorcyclist initially blamed by driver

There are more reasonable options than the two pictured above - the ATC2k (ATC2000) is a popular model.

Here's some more about helmet camera's in the UK and the related youtube channels - The UK helmet camera thread
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Old 06-25-08, 07:41 AM   #24
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sweet. can't wait to see some videos.
youtube.com
ATC-2k in the search pane for the popular and cheap camera.

VIO POV.1 in the search pane for DVD quality video production.

Remember that youtube automatically reduces file sizes and thus video quality so what you see on youtube is always poorer quality than the video you capture.
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Old 06-25-08, 08:09 AM   #25
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Yea SE Michigan is a warzone for cycle commuting. Something about the motor city mentality.

Even in a car it is a warzone. Every driver is out there to "win", which means cuttring off people and drive like a dangerous ass to people on cars, motorcycles and bicycles.

Not only that we have to deal with the worst potholes and road conditions (including road debris everywhere).

No bike infrastructure, no bike racks, none of the police acutally know cycling laws.

I'm sure the currently poor economy doesnt help peoples nerves either.

It's just insane. The only thing we can do is keep our head on a pivot fully alert, and stay safe as possible (sometimes by breaking the "law").

Good luck guys!
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