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Old 03-15-08, 01:51 PM   #1
goldfishin
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anyone else noticing more aggressive motorists?

i did 20 miles yesterday for the first time in a while, while most cars behaved themselves 4 or 5 got agressive with me, trying to nudge me, and one got REALLY close as she passed me whilst yapping on her phone. i think i'll just start taking the whole damned lane. it seems the only way to get people to behave.
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Old 03-15-08, 03:17 PM   #2
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I noticed that around here in Northern Ohio too. I think they are just made at us because we are out on the roads in the cold and taking up their precious lanes, BOO HOO for them! Or they are coach potatoes that are guilty and taking it out on us.
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Old 03-15-08, 03:26 PM   #3
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i see it a lot during this time of year. it's like cagers get used to relatively empty roads and then all of a sudden all these cyclists are out when the weather warms up. since they have no imagination, their only recourse is to bully you around.
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Old 03-15-08, 03:47 PM   #4
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It's cuz the jackholes just dropped $80 to fill up their SUVs.
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Old 03-15-08, 08:02 PM   #5
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I am not noticing this here. I am a wee bit aggressive as of late due to recovering from being sick. My temper is a bit on the short side.
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Old 03-15-08, 08:08 PM   #6
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Nope ... I haven't notice any increased agressiveness here in Alberta. The drivers are pretty good when it comes to cyclists, most of the time. And I didn't notice much agressiveness in Australia either ... 2 trucks over about 2 weeks of cycling isn't excessive.
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Old 03-15-08, 09:53 PM   #7
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maybe it was just yesterday. the traffic was much lighter today................................... i just realized this is the weekend.
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Old 03-15-08, 11:26 PM   #8
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Fridays are sometimes not so good....
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Old 03-16-08, 02:12 AM   #9
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I'm on an image board that seems to promote trolling.
This board has a transportation board, where bicycles are often discussed by those of us there who truly enjoy them.
This being said however, many pipe in about why they supposedly hate us on the roads, and while a lot of it is only to rile everyone up and start a flame war.. I see truth in their words, when even they may not know it.

As such I'd say that most car drivers tend to be aggressive toward us out riding because they truly do think they "own" the road, and that we on bikes belong on bike paths, sidewalks, and anywhere they aren't, because we get in their way.

The response is always "you damned cyclists take up the whole damned road like its all yours, you hold up traffic on smaller roads, and won't let cars get by" etc.. so they say "so yeah, I throw things at bikers, try to edge them off the road etc.. because its funny."

welcome to the typical assmunch behind the wheel.
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Old 03-16-08, 02:19 AM   #10
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The response is always "you damned cyclists take up the whole damned road like its all yours, you hold up traffic on smaller roads, and won't let cars get by" etc.. so they say "so yeah, I throw things at bikers, try to edge them off the road etc.. because its funny."
Well .... if cyclists are taking up the whole road and blocking traffic, I can see why drivers would be upset. See my post in the thread about dealing with agressive drivers ...

1. Follow the rules of the road.

Following the rules of the road usually means we, cyclists, are required to ride as far to the right (or left, depending on which country we're in) as practicable. In other words, in general, we are supposed to keep out of the way of the motorized vehicles unless the road conditions are such that we cannot safely do so.

Fortunately, most drivers are very good.
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Old 03-16-08, 02:28 AM   #11
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you must live in a nice town or city where they have tjings like shoulders on the roads.

here, no shoulders, or potted, gravel ones at best, and narrow country roads with many blind spots and NO bike trails or paths at all.

also,, a lot of drunks in pickups
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Old 03-16-08, 09:21 AM   #12
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I must say that I have found the drivers in my area extremly courtious for the most part when it comes to bike riders... I have often thought that it has something to do with the 3.48 and rising price we are paying for a gallon of regular here... They figure they will be on a bike before long :-).. I was at the Dr's a couple days ago, the front doors were open for ventlation and a middle aged woman rode her bike up and secured it to a pole... When slhe came in apparently for an appointment everone was congradulating her on riding her bike... Even the staff... It was really a pleasnat surprise to see the suppoort people were giving her...
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Old 03-16-08, 12:36 PM   #13
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The start and end of my commute are on roads, the rest on MUPs.
The first bit in the morning is a straight downhill, and it shouldn't be
a problem, I can use the light sequence to get a clear shot to the
bottom, drivers have to race to get to the light ( red ) before me.
The bit before work is bad enough that I was dubious about using it.
Blind curve, no shoulder, poor surface, no lights to break up traffic,
poor lighting generally. On the latter, in 6 months, I can count the
examples of rude/dangerous behavior on one hand, the first bit,
about one day in three. Why??Beats Me??
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Old 03-16-08, 02:53 PM   #14
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I think something else that happens is the motorists discuss the issue of cyclists (much like we do with motorists) with each other.....and this fans the flame of their discontent. It also might embolden them to "carry out" their chest beating claims of whatever words were exchanged in their discussions.

I have actually overheard discussions like that. Somebody recounts a story of a cyclist that pissed them off (for whatever reason) and they start talking tough. There's nothing like commiserating with a comrade to help convince yourself that you've been "right" all along.
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Old 03-16-08, 02:55 PM   #15
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I haven't. 2 incidents in 20 years still.
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Old 03-16-08, 05:29 PM   #16
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Things have actually gotten BETTER around here for the last several years, I think mostly because there are hundreds of bikes on the streets--drivers are just more aware of them.
The riders who do consistently have problems bring them on themselves to a large degree: One of our local clubs, in particular, is notoriously aggressive, impeding traffic on rural roads and yelling at drivers who try to pass. They screw things up for everybody. I notice it especially when I ride in ordinary shorts and a T-shirt instead of my full superhero cycling outfits: Drivers give me more room and show more courtesy than when they think I'm one of THOSE a-holes.
I'm always dubious of claims that drivers "tried to nudge me" or "tried to run me off the road" because I don't believe all drivers have such lousy aim. If four or five people tried to hit you, chances are one of them would. And even the stupidest drivers (they live here, so I know) realize trying to hit a cyclist is assault. What you're seeing is ignorance and inattention, not malice. It shouldn't be that way, and I'm not defending the drivers, but it's how things are. You need to be aware of it and ride accordingly.
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Old 03-16-08, 09:38 PM   #17
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Yep, but it's no worse than the increased levels of aggression in the rest of society. I just watch the way drivers around here treat each other. It tells me everything I need to know.
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Old 03-18-08, 04:28 PM   #18
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I went for my first ride yesterday, it was 38 degrees so I only went 6 miles before I gave in. Maybe the jerk in the car who threw a beer bottle at me made me return home, not sure. But I did manage to find my cat who had been missing for a week on the edge of the road, along with 3 dead deer & a box of 4 fox squirles. I hope this isnt a sign of things to come this spring. Be careful guys.
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Old 03-18-08, 11:05 PM   #19
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My sincere condolences for your feline.
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Old 03-19-08, 05:59 AM   #20
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Wow! After reading some of the posts in this thread, I feel blessed! I live in a semi-rural part of the UK, drivers round here are usually courteous to cyclists, pedestrians and each other. There are also lots of cycle paths round here - and a fair number of cyclists! Things do get a bit pushier in Portsmouth and Southampton (my two local cities), but then the roads are narrower and more congested there. The biggest road hazards round here tend to be tractors and small combine harvesters (or "Trac'rrs 'n' cumboin 'aarvstrrs" as they say round these parts).

As a cyclist who is also a driver, I am always careful when I drive round cyclists. Importantly, I know the rules of the road and so I ride in accordance with them - this makes things A LOT safer. As a driver, I can instantly spot the cyclists who don't drive and I do get pissed off with them.

If you're a cyclist who hasn't learnt to drive then PLEASE REMEMBER:
1) If you're on a bike and you need to stop, you only stop your own weight + the bike at pedalling speed (about 85Kg at about 20mph in my case).
2) If you're in a car and you need to stop, you have to stop your weight, plus several tons of solid steel (about 1500Kg at anything up to 70mph in my case!). That tends to take a considerably greater distance to stop than a bike!
3) Get a copy of the Highway Code (or whatever the equivalent is in your county!) and read it!!! You'll be learning all the things that drivers have been taught to expect you to do on road! If you do something unexpected you will (a) scare the crap out of the driver and/or (b) get flattened. Actually, most drivers are not out to get you, they'd be seriously shocked if they knocked you off your bike - I know I would have a hard time getting back into the driving seat of a car if I knocked down a cyclist. Those that do actually want to do damage are what the medical profession calls "psychopaths" they are very rare

That being said, nothing pisses me off more as a cyclist than drivers who just don't think about how vulnerable we are on our bikes - they don't do it on purpose, they just don't think. I remember when I did my driving test, hardly any attention was paid to teaching me how to get past a cyclist safely. If learner drivers were given more tuition in that regard then I believe drivers would be much more mindful of us. I have learned how to drive safely round cyclists mainly from being a cyclist myself.
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Old 03-19-08, 02:11 PM   #21
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I went for my first ride yesterday, it was 38 degrees so I only went 6 miles before I gave in. Maybe the jerk in the car who threw a beer bottle at me made me return home, not sure. But I did manage to find my cat who had been missing for a week on the edge of the road, along with 3 dead deer & a box of 4 fox squirles. I hope this isnt a sign of things to come this spring. Be careful guys.
Did somebody actually throw a bottle at you? This has sort of become an urban legend around here--I've probably talked to two dozen new riders in the Lance Era (people who started riding when it got trendy) who claim to have had a beer bottle (it's always a beer bottle, never a Coke can or apple core) thrown at them. In almost 35 years of cycling as an adult, up to 6000 miles a year, I've never had anything thrown at me, never had anyone "try to run me off the road" and only been yelled at four or five times. Sometimes I wonder if these stories have a life of their own...
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Old 03-19-08, 02:20 PM   #22
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They're getting angry because the price of gas is going up, and they take their frustrations out of bicyclists.
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Old 03-19-08, 05:19 PM   #23
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Some things drivers do seem like aggression when you're on a bike, but they might be just inattention, distraction, lack of knowledge of basic laws of physics, or just plain stupidity. In Utah, the last is especially obvious in drivers most of the time. People drive as if their cars are on a fixed guide way (like tracks), going at a fixed speed that they can't control. When I look at some of them, they have a dullard expression on their faces. Maybe its the quality of their lives in general? Are they really that zombied-out? They're scary.
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