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  1. #1
    practically invincible.
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    the stop line is THERE

    How do you deal with people who stop far forward of the stop line? Part of my commute takes me along a MUP which has (in my opinion) far more intersections with driveways, etc, than I would like. There's one part where there's a major three-way intersection, and the MUP has it's own (well-marked) crosswalk and signal. Today, as on many days, a driver (in a ZipCar, no less!) stopped right in the middle of the crosswalk, leaving about six inches between her front fender and the traffic island--so I yelled at her, pointing at the stop line. She yelled back. It wasn't nice. I wish I'd handled it better--I don't like losing my cool when riding. What do you do? This will happen again, I'm sure, since I go through that intersection twice a day, so I have to figure out what the best way of dealing is.
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  2. #2
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    I don't ride in crosswalks so this has never been an issue.

    I've noticed that cyclists far more than motorists stop beyond they stop line, often in the x-walk.

    Al

  3. #3
    practically invincible.
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    I don't ride in crosswalks so this has never been an issue.

    I've noticed that cyclists far more than motorists stop beyond they stop line, often in the x-walk.

    Al
    It probably annoys me more because this is one of the only places where I'm in the crosswalk. Otherwise I'm in the lane.

    I think cyclists tend to stop beyond the stop line for three reasons: 1) to see better, 2) to get a head start on faster-moving cars, and 3) to trigger a light, at least where I am the trigger is under the stop line and you have to put the bike ON it to get a green. Not sure if any of those are good reasons, but that's how I see it.
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  4. #4
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by anastrophe View Post
    I think cyclists tend to stop beyond the stop line for three reasons: 1) to see better, 2) to get a head start on faster-moving cars, and 3) to trigger a light, at least where I am the trigger is under the stop line and you have to put the bike ON it to get a green. Not sure if any of those are good reasons, but that's how I see it.
    Cars go beyond the stop line usually for your first reason. There's an intersection at the end of my block where, if I'm driving, I have to get myself almost past the crosswalk itself just so I can get a decent view around parallel-parked cars to the left (which, in this case, is also angled to the back, a little "past 8 'clock" in pilot terms).

    The second reason doesn't matter, of course, unless the person is nearly lost to begin with and is hoping to jump ahead & cross several lanes to make a turn at the next intersection.

    The third reason, as it relates to cars, is actually more invalid sometimes. I've known most intersections to have the wire loop well behind the stop line, and if the car moves past it, the system thinks that there's no longer a car waiting and won't change the lights.

    Anyway, at intersections with stop signs (not stoplights, as in the OP's case) and parallel parking, stopping beyond the stop line is pretty common. At stoplights, though, it's just being rude.

    Plus, maybe that Zipcar driver is another BF member, who'll soon post over in LCF about how someone yelled at them when they mistakenly stopped ahead of the line.

  5. #5
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Motorists go over the stop line mainly because of lack of discipline. It's a lazy learned habit.

    Yes, after stopping to see better if making a turn on red motorists need to (legally) move beyond the stop line, but that is the only reason they would ever need to.

    Al

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    Motorists go over the stop line mainly because of lack of discipline. It's a lazy learned habit.

    Yes, after stopping to see better if making a turn on red motorists need to (legally) move beyond the stop line, but that is the only reason they would ever need to.

    Al
    Al's got it right.

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  7. #7
    Johnny G. Pragmatik's Avatar
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    I'll cop to crossing the line a bit myself on my bike, but it's for reason #4: To be seen. I mainly do it at "No Turn On Red" intersections where I don't want to get smashed by an impatient driver. I do watch for pedestrians and move if I'm in their way. A bike is easier to move and/or walk around it it's sticking two feet into a crosswalk than a car is

  8. #8
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    Yes, after stopping to see better if making a turn on red motorists need to (legally) move beyond the stop line, but that is the only reason they would ever need to.

    Al
    However, that leads to confusion among the following drivers, who can't guess whether the person in front has actually stopped, or is going to proceed through the turn, or is going to stop again (sometimes repeatedly). A car that goes, stops, goes, stops, goes, then stops again risks getting rear-ended, because the following driver is likely to be looking down the cross street already, thinking that after stopping once or twice, surely the lead car is actually going to keep moving.

  9. #9
    bulletproof tiger ok_commuter's Avatar
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    IIRC, "Blocking the Box" is a $500 ticket in NYC. Besides which, best don't F with bike messengers. ;p

  10. #10
    practically invincible.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BarracksSi View Post
    The third reason, as it relates to cars, is actually more invalid sometimes. I've known most intersections to have the wire loop well behind the stop line, and if the car moves past it, the system thinks that there's no longer a car waiting and won't change the lights.

    Anyway, at intersections with stop signs (not stoplights, as in the OP's case) and parallel parking, stopping beyond the stop line is pretty common. At stoplights, though, it's just being rude.

    Plus, maybe that Zipcar driver is another BF member, who'll soon post over in LCF about how someone yelled at them when they mistakenly stopped ahead of the line.
    No, I mean for bikes--some of our intersections have triggers specifically meant for cyclists, and there's a sign that indicates you should put your wheel on the stop line to trigger it.

    Generally I don't mind if people stop over the line but in this case there was an island (with a curb) which prevented me from going around them. Plus my light doesn't last very long, so I wanted to get through before it changed.
    \

  11. #11
    Dances With Cars TRaffic Jammer's Avatar
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    I've often wished I could bunnyhop that high and then ride across the hood. *ok there's one of my bike fantasies*

  12. #12
    Senior Member lil brown bat's Avatar
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    There are all kinds of ways of "stopping after the stop line". My personal favorite are the ones entering a main street from a side street who sail a)past the stop line b)through the crosswalk and c)about five feet out into the main street (about where the breakdown lane would end, if it had one). While they're doing this they turn their head to see if any thing's coming. Then they do the automatic "no trucks no cars no buses" thing and sorta keep rolling, only to jerk to a halt after another three feet as they realize that there are other things than trucks cars buses.

    And then, half the time...they immediately start rolling again, making it that much harder to avoid them.

    What can you do? I dunno. Sometimes, if I catch them at the next light, I'll ask what had them so distracted and point out that they'd be even later getting to work if they'd hit me. I really do believe that that's a sobering thought for a driver.

  13. #13
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lil brown bat View Post
    And then, half the time...they immediately start rolling again, making it that much harder to avoid them.

    What can you do? I dunno.
    I go behind them (that is, assuming that I'm trying to cross the street that they're on). A driver to their rear is paying more attention to the front than to the side.

  14. #14
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BarracksSi View Post
    However, that leads to confusion among the following drivers, who can't guess whether the person in front has actually stopped, or is going to proceed through the turn, or is going to stop again (sometimes repeatedly). A car that goes, stops, goes, stops, goes, then stops again risks getting rear-ended, because the following driver is likely to be looking down the cross street already, thinking that after stopping once or twice, surely the lead car is actually going to keep moving.
    This just seems like paranoia. I've stopped at line then proceeded forward when clear to check for x-traffic my whole driving life and never once had anyone come close to rear ending me. We are talking about stop, then roll forward, stop, then go. That's it. I'm surprised this has cause you confusion.

    If you are suggesting rolling up and only stopping at the 'visibility' position? That would cause far more accidents - sidewalk cyclists and pedestrians faring the worst from this scenario.

    Al

  15. #15
    Dances With Cars TRaffic Jammer's Avatar
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    I've been bitten a couple times doing that... the second car in line follows the first in a cooperative roll/stop, and all of a sudden no room, OR the first car, for some bizarre reason, decides to fail to commit and leaves you the option of slamming the side panel.

  16. #16
    Beer is delicious! Quickbeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lil brown bat View Post
    There are all kinds of ways of "stopping after the stop line". My personal favorite are the ones entering a main street from a side street who sail a)past the stop line b)through the crosswalk and c)about five feet out into the main street (about where the breakdown lane would end, if it had one). While they're doing this they turn their head to see if any thing's coming. Then they do the automatic "no trucks no cars no buses" thing and sorta keep rolling, only to jerk to a halt after another three feet as they realize that there are other things than trucks cars buses.
    There's a MUP that runs adjacent to a busy road for approximately three miles on my commute. The above post by lil brown bat accurately illustrates why I don't use the MUP (among other reasons...right hooks from right turners not watching for traffic on the MUP for example). I understand that in order to see, motorists sometimes have to block the MUP. That's fine. I just wish they wouldn't yell at me to "use the f*&%ing bike path!" when I'm riding on the shoulder. Motorists don't understand how much more risky it is for cyclists to ride on the MUP than it is to ride on the road.
    Rebellion without purpose is worse than conformity.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    There's an intersection or two on my commute where I stop (my bike) beyond the stop line for something similar to #3. I know my bike will not trip the light, so I pull beyond the white line so that the cars behind can get close enough to trigger to trip the light for me (and them).

    There's at least one place on my local MUP where the MUP crosses a road right at an intersection. There are signs for the cyclists to stop and signs for cars to stop and a blinking red light for the cars. Unfortunately, cars who stop before crossing the MUP quickly find that they have zero visibility to see if it's safe to proceed through the intersection. Their only safe option is to pull up and block the MUP crossing so that they can see if any on coming traffic prohibits them from going the rest of the way through the intersection. It's annoying to deal with, but I don't blame the cars because occasionally I have been the cars, and I've done the exact same thing, the alternatives being to sit there forever or pull into the intersection blind.

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    I usually explain to people that have inched into the crosswalk that if my blind mother had been crossing on the crosswalk at that moment she would have walked right into them with her cane. Then she would be forced to either wait in the middle of the road until the car moved or is forced to walk out into street traffic to go around. I then explain to people that the crosswalk is there for a reason and that cars aren't allowed onto that spot because people have to cross. The thought of a blind person being forced into traffic by their car is usually enough to make the person apologize and backup. Hopefully it is a lesson learned and they won't do it again.

  19. #19
    not a role model JeffS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BarracksSi View Post
    However, that leads to confusion among the following drivers, who can't guess whether the person in front has actually stopped, or is going to proceed through the turn, or is going to stop again (sometimes repeatedly). A car that goes, stops, goes, stops, goes, then stops again risks getting rear-ended, because the following driver is likely to be looking down the cross street already, thinking that after stopping once or twice, surely the lead car is actually going to keep moving.
    Not quite the same, but I had a woman do this to me once upon a time at a yield sign. Stop, go, stop, go... I saw a HUGE opening in traffic, she went, I started easing up, still looking left and she'd stopped. I barely tapped her, but her trailer hitch still destroyed my hood.

    We both knew that she caused the accident, but that legally I was at fault. The frustration of dealing with tentative drivers is part of the reason I try not to drive anymore.

  20. #20
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    This just seems like paranoia. I've stopped at line then proceeded forward when clear to check for x-traffic my whole driving life and never once had anyone come close to rear ending me. We are talking about stop, then roll forward, stop, then go. That's it. I'm surprised this has cause you confusion.

    If you are suggesting rolling up and only stopping at the 'visibility' position? That would cause far more accidents - sidewalk cyclists and pedestrians faring the worst from this scenario.

    Al
    Quote Originally Posted by JeffS View Post
    Not quite the same, but I had a woman do this to me once upon a time at a yield sign. Stop, go, stop, go... I saw a HUGE opening in traffic, she went, I started easing up, still looking left and she'd stopped. I barely tapped her, but her trailer hitch still destroyed my hood.

    We both knew that she caused the accident, but that legally I was at fault. The frustration of dealing with tentative drivers is part of the reason I try not to drive anymore.
    Toldja.

  21. #21
    The Wheel is Turning The Figment's Avatar
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    Blown Stop Line......Terrifying

    Nose Wheelie and Tail Kickout......A Buttload of pratice to perfect.

    Crescent Shaped Reminder in their car door of Where the Stop Line is......PRICELESS!!!
    Last edited by The Figment; 05-13-08 at 02:30 PM.

  22. #22
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Figment View Post
    Blown Stop Line= Nose Wheelie=Crescent Shaped Reminder in the Car Door of Where the Stop Line Is!!!!
    = Not Listening To What Your Mom Taught You About Looking Both Ways Before Crossing The Street

    She did drill that habit into you at a young age, didn't she?

  23. #23
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BarracksSi View Post
    Toldja.
    What? That JeffS not leaving safe following distance and/or watching x-traffic instead of where was going can lead to a collision? No surprise.

    Anyway in Jeff's example the lead driver did not stop only twice which is the maximum required. In this case the driver only needed to stop once, but instead stopped at least three times.

    Al
    Last edited by noisebeam; 05-13-08 at 02:32 PM.

  24. #24
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    What? That JeffS not leaving safe following distance and/or watching x-traffic instead of where was going can lead to a collision? No surprise.

    Al
    And he's not alone, either.

    Get my point now? Or do I have to make it even more grade-school?

  25. #25
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BarracksSi View Post
    And he's not alone, either.

    Get my point now? Or do I have to make it even more grade-school?
    No. Make it grade school. I still don't see the issue with following the law which is to stop at the stop line, then once can proceed when clear if legally permitted.

    Al

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