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Old 05-03-09, 11:50 PM   #1
TrekJapan
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Just about got ran over just now

Was cruising downhill wind at my back. Bear in mind I live in Japan and they drive on the left here.

I'm on the far left approaching an intersection. Four lane road. Two each side. A big truck meets and just barely passes me in the right hand lane. He basically does a perfect job of obstructing me from the guy who was going the other way waiting to turn right.

I saw it coming. I knew it was going to happen and I had two options. Stop even though I had the right of way or hammer like nobodies business.

The guy turns right to squeeze in behind the truck and another car coming fast. For him to stop for me leaves him two choices.

He can stop and get T boned by a small car coming fast or he can run me over.

He goes for plan B. Fortunately I also went for plan B which was to hammer as fast as I could as soon as I smelled this coming.

It was way closer than I wanted it to be. To his credit he cleared the intersection and stopped. I circled back around and went and talked to him. He was a pure Japanese speaker and I understood him asking me if I was okay and that he was sorry. I thumped my chest to simulate a fast beating heart and told him in Japanese I was okay and all was well and thanked him and wished him well.

It was just a bad situation all around without a lot of options. It worked out this time and I credit getting through it with paying good solid attention to what I was doing and smelling out my options before things got too weird.

The car will always win. I stopped for a big old cup of coffee right after that to calm down for a few.

John
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Old 05-04-09, 12:20 AM   #2
puppypilgrim
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Glad to hear you are alright John! It's never fun to have a close call. Good job scanning traffic and staying alert.
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Old 05-04-09, 03:26 AM   #3
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Pheeeeew ! . . . Quick thinking.
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Old 05-04-09, 03:39 AM   #4
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Glad you're OK.
Thank god you were on a folding bike.
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Old 05-04-09, 05:24 AM   #5
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Glad you're OK.
Thank god you were on a FAST bike.
Fixed
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Old 05-04-09, 05:38 AM   #6
TrekJapan
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Actually I neglected to mention I was on my Speed P8 not the new TT.

John
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Old 05-04-09, 05:56 AM   #7
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Wow, while a bad situation all the way around, it was nice of the driver to stop and make sure you were ok. I don't think that would ever happen here in the States. Demonstrates to me the greater acceptance cyclists have in Japan.
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Old 05-04-09, 06:29 AM   #8
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Good that you read the situation right and saved the day not to mention your skin.
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Old 05-04-09, 07:10 AM   #9
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He asked if YOU were OK?

He said he was sorry?

Whoa!
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Old 05-04-09, 08:53 AM   #10
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Glad to hear you're alright John! Whew, was a close one..

Most streets here are narrow, so there's little room for error. Glad to hear you gunned it & pulled through!

Since I commute regularly, I have my share of scary moments...kinda regularly..

Last one a young driver passed me, then went out of his way to take a fast left into a road right in FRONT of me!
(remember, we bike/drive on the left here) This was on a slight downhill, & I was hammering..! I pulled both brake levers while ALSO taking the left w/him. (no choice!) and started sliding towards him. I remember thinking, "I'm hitting'm, like it or not" & cringing..Luckily, he took the corner wider - 'just enough' so I didn't meet his side door!! Not cool...

I came to a stop & had to compose myself as he just drove off..

Stay safe glad you're 'daijyou bu'.
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Old 05-04-09, 10:36 AM   #11
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Glad to hear you're okay. It's pretty unusual here for drivers to actually stop - or even notice these things. On my last couple of close calls, the drivers just drove off - including one driver who actually did make contact. (It was a love tap from the side. I barely felt his car touch the magnetix catch on my Dahon, but I think I scratched his paint.)
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Old 05-04-09, 02:37 PM   #12
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Kaito,

I've had plenty of guys quick turn in front of me here, especially on 58. I still ride 58 but I'm more content to ride 330 or 329 and the associated back roads.

Man that was really really close though. It was on 330 coming down the hill towards the McDonald's gate. I generally turn in by Bldg 1 but decided to cruise to the McDonalds gate which is something I NEVER do. Was just trying to stay on the bike an extra 5 minutes or something because I was having fun.

Weird how little changes in plans can affect things.

If I had it to do over again and some day I may, I'm gonna stop. If I end up stopping for no reason then so be it. That's gotta be better than what happened yesterday.

John
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