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  1. #1
    Senior Member mrdelprete's Avatar
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    Advice from a cop

    So a cop friend of mine actually told me he rides against traffic, and I should too. He said riding
    with traffic is too dangerous...... I always thought the opposite, and the other 4 people I see on my morning commute all ride against. (I am not in an urban area, and the main road I go on is a 35mph crowded highway through town in NJ called Rt. 9) Opinions?
    2010 Specialized Globe Vienna 1
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  2. #2
    Acts 2:38 rex_kramer's Avatar
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    Nothing else to say other than he's wrong.
    Philippians 2:9-11

  3. #3
    Charlotte, NC Commuter
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    I am not comfortable at all going against traffic. Can't imagine meeting another bike going the wrong way while also trying to avoid the cars.... I like going with traffic and using my mirror to see what is coming behind me.

    Ride safe,

    Jeff

  4. #4
    steel lover
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    against traffic?

    sketchy
    not comfortable
    illegal (as far as I have ever heard)
    Just plain awkward (what do you do at lights/intersections?)
    Piss off every cyclist who is going the right way.

    Just say no.
    No lugs, no care.

  5. #5
    xtrajack xtrajack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rex_kramer View Post
    Nothing else to say other than he's wrong.
    Exactly
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    Originally Posted by Steely Dan: if you're riding a bike and not having fun, then you're doing it wrong.

  6. #6
    Senior Member mrdelprete's Avatar
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    I agree with all. When I. Had to go against once, dropped my wallet and backtracked for it, I was freaking out
    2010 Specialized Globe Vienna 1
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  7. #7
    Velocommuter Commando Sirrus Rider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrdelprete View Post
    So a cop friend of mine actually told me he rides against traffic, and I should too. He said riding
    with traffic is too dangerous...... I always thought the opposite, and the other 4 people I see on my morning commute all ride against. (I am not in an urban area, and the main road I go on is a 35mph crowded highway through town in NJ called Rt. 9) Opinions?

    Go with what the NJ motor vehicle handbook says as to the operation of bicycles. Cops are often not legal experts nor the sharpest knives in the drawer.
    Riding 19 Years of Specialized Sirrus Tradition.
    Live in Houston? Come to http://bicyclecommutehouston.blogspot.com/
    1988 Specialized Sirrus, 1989 Alpine Monitor Pass MTB, 2007 Specialized Sirrus 700C hybrid, 2007 Schwinn Town & Country trike, 1970 "Resto-Improved" Raleigh 20, 1970 "WIP" Raleigh 20, and 1980 "WIP" Schwinn Town & Country trike

  8. #8
    Senior Member Timber_8's Avatar
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    I am sure that is against the law in the united states
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  9. #9
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    The cop is wrong. Here's why-

    Whenever you approach someone, whether driving, riding, or walking- instinctively you head to the right to avoid a collision. If you are riding against the flow of traffic and have to make an emergency move, 9 times out of ten, you will subconsciously go to your right. That will put you into the path of oncoming traffic.

    As a pedestrian, it makes sense (and is the law when using the road) to go against the grain.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
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  10. #10
    I am a caffine girl colleen c's Avatar
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    Ha ha. Don't do it! It is a setup! I think he only told you that just so he can ticket you later to meet his daily ticket quota.
    "Difference between a well dressed cyclist riding a two wheeled bicycle and a badly dressed cyclist riding a Recumbent is only a-tire"
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    Some people got their head so far up their butt such that the only thing they hear is muffle when trying to explain anything to them! I only wish they take it out sometimes to smell the roses.

  11. #11
    On a Mission from God FunkyStickman's Avatar
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    Bikes are vehicles, not pedestrians... it's illegal to ride against traffic, no matter what they say.

  12. #12
    Older than dirt CCrew's Avatar
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    Ask if you should do it in your car too, since the same laws apply

  13. #13
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by colleen c View Post
    Ha ha. Don't do it! It is a setup! I think he only told you that just so he can ticket you later to meet his daily ticket quota.
    Or you got a really hot SO that he's trying to hook up with.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
    Community guidelines

  14. #14
    Slogging along rubic's Avatar
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    As a cop, he is a person. As a person, he has an opinion. His opinion is wrong, in my opinion. Just because he is a cop does not make him more insightful and certainly not necessarily more brilliant than the next person who opinionates. I stand by my opinion. What is yours?

  15. #15
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    Riding against traffic sucks.

    First all the cars pulling out of driveways and such are not expecting you.

    Secondly the speed difference between you and traffic is much greater. Let's say you're riding 15 mph and the cars are going 35. Riding with traffic the difference between you and the cars is 20 mph, riding against the difference is 50 mph. And that means not only are you passing cars at a worse relative speed (riding with traffic a car only needs to reduce speed by 15 mph to avoid hitting you, whereas riding against traffic you both have to stop completely or one of you needs to turn aside to avoid a collision), but you're also passing more than twice the number of cars.

  16. #16
    I am a caffine girl colleen c's Avatar
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    He obviously has not seen my front lights at 2000+ lumen. If I was riding against traffics, there will be a heck of a lot of accident as I will be blinding every motorist heading my way.
    "Difference between a well dressed cyclist riding a two wheeled bicycle and a badly dressed cyclist riding a Recumbent is only a-tire"
    _______________________________________________________________________
    Some people got their head so far up their butt such that the only thing they hear is muffle when trying to explain anything to them! I only wish they take it out sometimes to smell the roses.

  17. #17
    Senior Member travelmama's Avatar
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    Ask your friend what he thinks after he is hit head on by a vehicle or causes an accident.
    Two Wheels One Love

  18. #18
    smitten by саша pwdeegan's Avatar
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    wow. send that cop in for remedial training.
    No slogans, just 14 facts.

  19. #19
    Senior Member
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    What your cop friend is telling you is not only wrong, it is illegal.

  20. #20
    Senior Member 009jim's Avatar
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    No one has provided a good reason why it is unsafe to go against. The law requires pedestrians to go against, so there must be a reason it is safe for pedestrians to go against. Yet why would this, as yet unknown, reason be true for pedestrians but not cyclists.

    I believe its worth delving into this, because the law is one aspect, but laws don't always benefit everyone.

    The reason could be that statistics have shown cyclists have a high probability of an accident if the go salmon.

    Just to be clear, I don't normally, but I did briefly scoot around some pedestrians on the sidewalk last week when the roadway was empty.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by 009jim View Post
    No one has provided a good reason why it is unsafe to go against. The law requires pedestrians to go against, so there must be a reason it is safe for pedestrians to go against. Yet why would this, as yet unknown, reason be true for pedestrians but not cyclists.

    I believe its worth delving into this, because the law is one aspect, but laws don't always benefit everyone.

    The reason could be that statistics have shown cyclists have a high probability of an accident if the go salmon.

    Just to be clear, I don't normally, but I did briefly scoot around some pedestrians on the sidewalk last week when the roadway was empty.
    I gave two reasons. The second one is the one that doesn't apply to pedestrians. Pedestrians have no appreciable speed (2-4 mph), so the difference in relative speed is not significant one way or the other. Also pedestrians can easily step off the roadway to avoid collisions.

    Also the first reason doesn't apply to pedestrians as much because they move slowly enough to be able to avoid getting hit by cars pulling out of driveways, etc, and vice versa. When pulling out the car will look to see if there is anything directly in front or behind them. But they might not look to see if a cyclist is coming barreling down the wrong way.
    Last edited by bijan; 10-16-10 at 07:38 PM. Reason: typo

  22. #22
    I am a caffine girl colleen c's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 009jim View Post
    No one has provided a good reason why it is unsafe to go against.
    Here is one sample of why I will not go against.

    You going against traffic, a lady behind their park car has her trunk up in the air. She was partially blinded and did not see you because her vision was blocked by their trunck and so was yours. She looks back and see a car approaching but got room to step out behind the trunk to go to the driver side door to get something. She step out and wham! You hit the person and push her into traffic of the oncoming car and DOA.

    Question is who will her family lawyer will tried to place blame on? Even if I get off the hook, my conscious will not.
    "Difference between a well dressed cyclist riding a two wheeled bicycle and a badly dressed cyclist riding a Recumbent is only a-tire"
    _______________________________________________________________________
    Some people got their head so far up their butt such that the only thing they hear is muffle when trying to explain anything to them! I only wish they take it out sometimes to smell the roses.

  23. #23
    Senior Member gunner65's Avatar
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    Being a police officer dont make him smart.

  24. #24
    Senior Member chadwebster's Avatar
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    I ride against traffic because i can then see if a car is too close to me, is swerving around or doing anything that could harm me, and this in turn gives me at least a chance to get out of the way vs not seeing anything at all and just getting hit(potentially) when riding with traffic.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by chadwebster View Post
    I ride against traffic because i can then see if a car is too close to me, is swerving around or doing anything that could harm me, and this in turn gives me at least a chance to get out of the way vs not seeing anything at all and just getting hit(potentially) when riding with traffic.
    Get a mirror? That gives you that advantage with none of the disadvantages of riding against traffic...

    I just use my ears and turn around to look behind me.

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