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  1. #1
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    New York cop doors cyclist

    New York cop doors cyclist

    http://road.cc/content/news/39834-ny...stioning-video

    Can't believe the attitude NYPD have, simply appaling.

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    Not for nothing, but the cyclist is an idiot for placing himself in perfect position to get doored.

    Riding up alongside stopped cars, as shown in the video, leads to exactly this kind of accident. And while the cop is clearly in the wrong, this would not have happened if the cyclist had been riding smart.

    SB

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    SERENITY NOW!!! jyossarian's Avatar
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    Yeah, of course it's the cyclists fault for not splitting lanes on the left side in the middle of traffic. What was he thinking?!? /sarcasm

    Gimme a break. The cop was at fault. The cyclist could've ridden more cautiously, but you can't always get enough space to stay out of the door zone and sometimes you end up w/ a door being thrown open in front of you. BTW, I've almost been doored a couple times going around cars on the left while splitting lanes in the middle of broad avenues, usually by people getting out of cabs stuck in traffic.
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    Well, when you consider that cyclists are *supposed* to follow the same rules as motorized vehicles, then lane splitting is illegal, so the cyclist in this case is possibly also at fault. Not to mention stupid for riding in the door zone.

    But everybody does it. I ride the shoulder and pass stopped cars all the time. Am I legally allowed to do so ?. Dunno. Nassau cops have given tickets to folks in cars using a shoulder/marked parking lane as a passing lane to make a right turn, which is illegal. Is it legal for bikes ?. Dunno.

    I do know that when I pass stopped cars and am riding on a shoulder, I am acutely aware that I have to be very careful for someone suddenly making a right or opening a car door. It's worse when riding busy streets in Manhattan and you want to make time.

    Note that I hate the NYPD and pretty much every other aspect of this accident clearly shows and confirms WHY I hate the NYPD, but clearly this situation shows how it takes two to create an accident.

    And yes, the cop is at fault and I stated so. But when you ride in the door zone and get doored................

  5. #5
    Senior Member ianbrettcooper's Avatar
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    Riding in the door zone may be stupid, but it's legal. Opening a door without checking to make sure it's safe is both potentially deadly and illegal.
    1997 Jamis Aragon (converted to touring bike), two white 1974 Gazelle-built Raleigh Grands Prix, two red 1973 Gazelle-built Raleigh Grands Prix.

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  6. #6
    Senior Member reducedfatoreo's Avatar
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    I can't believe people are blaming the victim. for those not in the NYC area, that's 42nd street right by Grand Central Terminal. It's a 2 way street, where else was the cyclist supposed to be riding? The middle yellow line? The other lane going the wrong way, the shoulder (no such thing in Manhattan) or, GASP, The sidewalk??? C'mon. Give me a break.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TiberiusBTkirk View Post
    I can't believe people are blaming the victim. for those not in the NYC area, that's 42nd street right by Grand Central Terminal. It's a 2 way street, where else was the cyclist supposed to be riding? The middle yellow line? The other lane going the wrong way, the shoulder (no such thing in Manhattan) or, GASP, The sidewalk??? C'mon. Give me a break.
    Where is he supposed to be riding ?, how about in the traffic lane, a safe distance from folks ILLEGALLY opening car doors (but doing it anyway) AND behind the taxis and other vehicles, possibly waiting for traffic to flow again. Maybe even waiting for RED LIGHTS (GASP). Instead he lane splits, which places him in a position to get doored.

    Who gets hurt/killed when the cyclist gets doored ?. THE CYCLIST !.

    It's really not that hard folks. If we want the respect, we have to earn it and riding dumb doesn't seem to be the way to earn that kind of respect.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TiberiusBTkirk View Post
    I can't believe people are blaming the victim.
    Nobody is blaming the victim, as the cop appeared to be OK, which is something we should all be thankful for. Probably can't say the same thing for their door that was so needlessly run into by that careless cyclist.

    Seriously, accidents happen, this donkey wasn't riding defensively and a "wrong time wrong place" deal occured that he happened to catch it on camera. Given the speed of the rider, it's quite likely that they couldn't be seen in the rear view mirror with the way blind spots work. Everyone should be glad that nobody was hurt.
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    Senior Member ianbrettcooper's Avatar
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    Have to agree with this. In this case it took two to tango. Still, it doesn't excuse the cop, and it certainly doesn't make what the police did afterwards right in any way.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    Where is he supposed to be riding ?, how about in the traffic lane, a safe distance from folks ILLEGALLY opening car doors (but doing it anyway) AND behind the taxis and other vehicles, possibly waiting for traffic to flow again. Maybe even waiting for RED LIGHTS (GASP). Instead he lane splits, which places him in a position to get doored.
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    All I need is a bike and a road, and to be left with the same freedom any other road user has to decide what's the safest lane position.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    Where is he supposed to be riding ?, how about in the traffic lane, a safe distance from folks ILLEGALLY opening car doors (but doing it anyway) AND behind the taxis and other vehicles, possibly waiting for traffic to flow again. Maybe even waiting for RED LIGHTS (GASP). Instead he lane splits, which places him in a position to get doored.

    Who gets hurt/killed when the cyclist gets doored ?. THE CYCLIST !.

    It's really not that hard folks. If we want the respect, we have to earn it and riding dumb doesn't seem to be the way to earn that kind of respect.
    ugh. 42nd street is one of the slowest cross streets in Manhattan. The M42 usually is in the running for the pokey awards, though I think this year the M34 was slower.
    He was riding in the traffic lane, it's a four lane two way road with parking on both sides. This is how we ride in Manhattan. It's at Pershing Square under the Park Ave viaduct, intersecting Grand Central Terminal.
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  12. #12
    Senior Member FrankieV's Avatar
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    This thread would not have gone this long if the cop had a different attitude.
    As a matter of fact, it wouldnt have even been started.
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    it's a four lane two way road with parking on both sides.
    Actually, the parking lanes are bus lanes on 42nd Street. The parked police vans were also violating the City's traffic rules in addition to the cop that interfered with traffic when he doored the cyclist.

  14. #14
    SERENITY NOW!!! jyossarian's Avatar
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    Yup. You can't park on 42nd St. Bus lanes are also bike lanes and car traffic is prohibited from using them except for turning right. I've seen cars get doored on 42nd St. The illegally parked limo passenger got out on the driver side and opened his door into a moving car. When the door bounced back, the passenger pushed it back into another car, got out and walked away. I'm sure all those posters outside of NYC will say the car drivers shouldn't have been driving in the door zone. As for me, I'm happy I don't ride w/ people who think their place is behind another car. They'd never get anywhere in NY.
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  15. #15
    Senior Member ianbrettcooper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyossarian View Post
    ...As for me, I'm happy I don't ride w/ people who think their place is behind another car. They'd never get anywhere in NY.
    A big problem that many people have with us cyclists is that too many cyclists share your "the rules of the road don't apply to me" attitude. The rules exist for a reason and if you break them, you deserve whatever response the law dictates. The fact that many people in NY break the rules is no excuse. There is no pressing need for anyone to go through NY at breakneck speed. If you find that traffic is too slow to get you to your destination on time, the answer is not to break the law: the correct answer is to leave home earlier.

    We have a choice - obey the law and be part of traffic, or disobey the law and risk being relegated to the status of pedestrian. I prefer the former - we may find ourselves stuck behind cars from time to time, but at least we have more chance of being afforded respect and equality that way.
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    All I need is a bike and a road, and to be left with the same freedom any other road user has to decide what's the safest lane position.

  16. #16
    Senior Member reducedfatoreo's Avatar
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    Anyone else think this thread should be merged with the original, or is it too late now?

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...-He-s-On-Drugs

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    Quote Originally Posted by reducedfatoreo View Post
    Anyone else think this thread should be merged with the original, or is it too late now?

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...-He-s-On-Drugs
    I chose to reply here because it's more NYC centric. No one rides behind a car in the City. You'll have a long line of car honkers among other things. Try taking over an entire lane and see what happens. In a NY minute.
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    SERENITY NOW!!! jyossarian's Avatar
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    The law here states you're supposed to ride to the right which puts us in the door zone most of the time. Riding behind cars and in traffic just aggravates drivers here more. The assumption that the doored cyclist was breaking some kind of law is moronic. He was riding as prescribed by law. I guess Silver Spring, MD laws are such that cyclists are entitled to the full lane all the time.
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  19. #19
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    OK, I'm gonna blame the cyclist on this one.

    To a limited extent, that is. It is obvious from the video that it was highly unsafe for him to ride that close between vehicles. Sometimes it can't be avoided, but he would've been much better off on a parallel street. (FYI 39th Street is the closest recommended cross-town bike route by the DOT.)

    Unfortunately I'm not sure how you would verify the cyclists' version of the subsequent events. It doesn't appear that he taped any subsequent conversations, or whether his attitude after getting doored wound up provoking the cops. I can't say "no it didn't happen," but we also can't rule out that the cyclist was upset and provoked the cop(s) without realizing it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jyossarian View Post
    The law here states you're supposed to ride to the right which puts us in the door zone most of the time. Riding behind cars and in traffic just aggravates drivers here more. The assumption that the doored cyclist was breaking some kind of law is moronic. He was riding as prescribed by law. I guess Silver Spring, MD laws are such that cyclists are entitled to the full lane all the time.
    This is incorrect. The law in NY states that you should right as far to the right as is safe and practical. If you need to take the lane to avoid car doors (or potholes, glass, whatever), then you are legally allowed to do so. Lane splitting that close to stopped vehicles is in no way safe. Yes you aggravate drivers on 42nd st. at rush hour by taking the lane, but what do you expect riding on 42nd st. at rush hour ?, it's NY. If the driver isn't pissed at a cyclist, they're going to be pissed at a taxi, or a bus, etc...cause they're stuck in traffic.

    In this case the cyclist was simply trying to get ahead in traffic by passing stopped vehicles in a traffic lane and riding along vehicles stopped on the shoulder, thus riding in the door zone. If it hadn't been a cop it, would have been a civilian vehicle, or a pedestrian stepping out behind parked buses. I did this exact thing yesterday down by the Battery, fighting buses all the way and understanding that I had to be very careful for pedestrians as well as buses pulling away from the curb.

    I guess my argument is that while most folks blamed the cop for doing any number of illegal things, nobody blamed the cyclist for riding dumb as well as possibly riding illegally by lane splitting. Had the cyclist who was injured filed a claim, the city, reviewing the video, would have simply placed somewhere between 30% and 50% of the blame on the cyclist. And I'd guess a judge would agree with that argument.

    SB

  21. #21
    Senior Member FattyArbuckle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    This is incorrect. The law in NY states that you should right as far to the right as is safe and practical... Lane splitting that close to stopped vehicles is in no way safe.
    It's perfectly safe and very practical, provided all parked drivers followed the law.

    But they don't. Like that cop, they ignore their sideview before opening their door into a travel lane and potentially moving traffic. I would think that the cyclist lane-splitting on that video is (or should be) totally legal, as a bicycle travel lane is much, much narrower than a car travel lane. When the NYC DOT paints sharrows to the right of any car lane, they are highlighting on a few streets of their choosing what was invisible right next to that cop van... a narrow travel lane for bicycles. This is implicit on any NYC street, and is why it's illegal for drivers to fling open their door without looking.

    Cop 100% at fault.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    Yes you aggravate drivers on 42nd st. at rush hour by taking the lane, but what do you expect riding on 42nd st. at rush hour ?, it's NY. If the driver isn't pissed at a cyclist, they're going to be pissed at a taxi, or a bus, etc...cause they're stuck in traffic.
    Of those, the cyclist is the only one who can't bear the brunt of that aggression. Ride legally, or ride without getting buzzed, on purpose, by speeding chunks of solid metal. Hmmmmmmmmm...

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by FattyArbuckle View Post
    It's perfectly safe and very practical, provided all parked drivers followed the law.

    But they don't. Like that cop, they ignore their sideview before opening their door into a travel lane and potentially moving traffic. I would think that the cyclist lane-splitting on that video is (or should be) totally legal, as a bicycle travel lane is much, much narrower than a car travel lane. When the NYC DOT paints sharrows to the right of any car lane, they are highlighting on a few streets of their choosing what was invisible right next to that cop van... a narrow travel lane for bicycles. This is implicit on any NYC street, and is why it's illegal for drivers to fling open their door without looking.

    Cop 100% at fault.



    Of those, the cyclist is the only one who can't bear the brunt of that aggression. Ride legally, or ride without getting buzzed, on purpose, by speeding chunks of solid metal. Hmmmmmmmmm...
    Fatty, I'm going to eat some crow here and agree with you, as I had not noticed in the video that the cyclist was travelling in a marked shared lane. That's the city essentially saying to cyclists "Ride Here" and totally places the burden on the parked vehicles. Which begs the question about the shared lane being possibly not well designed in this instance. Just for giggles, were the assorted vehicles parked ALL stopped illegally ?.

    I still think though that a reality check is in order in that the cyclist was positioning himself to get killed by his position in the door zone. Yes, we all agree that in a perfect world motorists should be checking their mirrors, but in OUR world they don't, especially in Manhattan and you can be totally in the right as well as totally dead.

  23. #23
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    When your riding in a city you don't always have options when it comes to where your handlebars will fit, I have been nearly doored a few times like this. The fact is that acts like this are random and unpredictable, especially for the cyclist. There is a lot of times little to no warning and sometimes you just don't have any other options when you are moving around cars. With that being said it is far more about what happens POST incident then the incident itself. Its the reactions of both the cyclist and driver/passenger that matters and what is done. The best situation is not to turn it into an argument, an admittedly hard thing when there is adrenaline coursing through both parties.

    In this case though judging by the story the police were clearly intimidating the cyclist. That is more of the issue here. If this had happened and both parties remained cool headed, filed an accident report and gone on their way and chalked it up to "**** happens" then everything is fine. We don't know the whole story though, what did the cyclist say, was he antagonistic?

    I have had police get upset when cyclists right fully take the lane which is technically "legal", and I have had far fewer police get upset when a cyclist rolls through a red light directly in front of them. There is very selective enforcement of rules from my experience and in general the view is that cyclists are treated with a more 'de facto' approach then a 'de jury' approach.

  24. #24
    Senior Member FattyArbuckle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    Fatty, I'm going to eat some crow here and agree with you, as I had not noticed in the video that the cyclist was travelling in a marked shared lane...

    I still think though that a reality check is in order in that the cyclist was positioning himself to get killed by his position in the door zone. Yes, we all agree that in a perfect world motorists should be checking their mirrors, but in OUR world they don't, especially in Manhattan and you can be totally in the right as well as totally dead.
    No need to eat crow, I might've misled you. There are no sharrows on that street, I was just saying that since the DOT paints them in some lanes (of their choosing) to remind drivers that cyclists could be on the right of such a lane, and that they can be on the right of ANY lane, that EVERY car lane should theoretically have sharrows painted on it. This includes the one next to the cop in that vid. And the parked vehicles should ALWAYS have the burden, totally, of checking their sideview mirror (or looking back, if in the backseat) before opening the door. Sharrows, bike lane, or not.

    The sharrows carry no legal weight as I understand them: they are just visual reminders for drivers. The bike lanes, however, obviously do.

    I definitely agree that you can be right and dead, though: better to go incredibly slow when going near parked cars & save your own skin.

  25. #25
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    If that's the block near Grand Central, it's chaos at almost all times of the day.

    People running into the street against the light, cabs jockeying for fares, and people jumping out of cars trying to make their trains.... I got doored right on that block awhile back. I avoid that area if at all possible.

    The cop should have looked before opening his door (and apologized, and offered to call an ambulance) and the cyclist should have slowed a bit if he had to split the lane.
    "...devil take the hindmost..."

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