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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 07-14-12, 10:04 PM   #1
Tearlach61
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Confrontation with a driver who right-hooked me with a surprise ending

Yesterday, a guy right hooked me. It was the evening commute home. I was in the bike approaching an intersection.

Among other things, I am very careful to monitor the turn signals of the cars in my rear-view mirror when I approach an intersection. When someone is going to turn right, I like to position myself to not be next to that car at that intersection.

Well, yesterday this truck that had had no turn signal on pulled up to me like it was going to pass me then at the intersection just cranked the wheel over and turned right. No signal. Just turned.

I don't usually do this. It's been years since I last confronted someone cuz you don't really know who you are dealing with, but this was really blatant so I followed the guy. He pulled over and I told him that he cut me off.

He responded by saying that I needed to watch where I was going so that I would not get hit. (That was not a promising start to the conversation, the guy was big too)

I then began to forcefully educate the guy the rules of the road, telling him that I had the right of way that in that circumstance and that he had to yield to me.

Then right in the middle of all that, the guy just out and all of a sudden apologized. Actually took me off guard. So I stopped, accepted his apology and moved on.
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Old 07-14-12, 11:04 PM   #2
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I wasn't expecting such a nice ending...

You shouldn't have either!

Be careful out there, my friend!

Life is like a box of chocolates, you know...

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Old 07-14-12, 11:26 PM   #3
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Hopefully his apology was honest and he doesn't go out hunting for a cyclist to "teach a lesson". I hear you and your frustration, but you are certainly taking a chance. Glad it had a happy ending.
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Old 07-14-12, 11:49 PM   #4
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Good ending, but yeah, next time, stay off
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Old 07-15-12, 07:01 AM   #5
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My bet is that he just wanted to get rid of you. Arguing with you wasn't working and he just didn't care. Apologize, end it and move on.

I was at a party with my insurance agent last night ( a friend). We got to talking about cyclists, cars and insurance. I mentioned a rude driver that I had had some problems with. His response, "Some drivers don't think bikes have rights to be on the road. Then when they find out in court or when fault is assigned, they learn the hard way that bikes usually win in court." I suppose that varies state by state, but I thought it interesting.

J.
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Old 07-15-12, 07:31 AM   #6
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If there's no physical contact, I generally just record the motorist's vehicle number, and move on. If the same motorist does it again on a later date, then I'll report the motorist to local law enforcement. For me, confronting a motorist after an incident has occurred has not been very productive, especially when one is out of breath in an effort of catching up with the offender.
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Old 07-15-12, 10:52 AM   #7
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I hear you all. Perhaps his apology was not genuine, perhaps he'll keep an eye out for me now and you never who you are dealing with.

That was the third time in over 20 years of daily commuting.
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Old 07-15-12, 11:47 AM   #8
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This is why I take the lane at intersections, bike lane or otherwise.
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Old 07-16-12, 07:57 AM   #9
Tearlach61
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I am not sure taking the lane would help in my circumstance. Distinct shoulder, fairly steady stream of folks passing me at 40 mph. Going out into the lane when there is lane right there...I don't think my fellow commuters would understand.

My tactic is to adjust my speed to try position myself between vehicles at the intersection. Works most of the time.
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Old 07-16-12, 08:49 AM   #10
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After having that happen a few times, in one case in front of a police car and being told by said police I need to watch out better. I now have no problem with swinging a ulock at that kind of situation. If a driver, intentionally or due to lack of attention, threatens my life with their 2 ton assault weapon, then I'm defending myself. Preferably hitting the driver, but I'll settle for a door/mirror/window. It's only come to that level a handfull of times in the last 10 years, but if car drivers can literally get away with murder, I'll take my chances with an assault.
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Old 07-16-12, 09:01 AM   #11
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When I read the thread title I was expecting something like a right-hook to the jaw.
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Old 07-16-12, 09:02 AM   #12
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Darn. I saw "with a surprise ending" and I thought it was going to turn out that the driver was a chick you'd had a crush on your freshman year of high school but hadn't seen in the 20 years since, but she was as hot as ever and, finding out that you were both single, invited you out to dinner to apologize. Now that would have been a good story. Especially if you bought her breakfast in return the next morning.
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