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Old 07-25-14, 07:19 AM   #1
flattie
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Close call today on Brooklyn Bridge

Traveling from Brooklyn to Manhattan today I had a close call thanks to another cyclist. Coming off the bridge approaching Center Street I slowed down and stayed on the bike path that bends north before making the slight left to enter the cross walk and proceeding onto Center Street to head south. As the light had just changed there were a few pedestrians and cyclists who I let cross into the street ahead of me - so at this point I was moving at best 2 or 3 mph as I casually rolled down the curb cut onto Center Street. At this point I hear "WHOA!" followed by the sound of skidding tires. A slight bump as something made contact with my rear tire. I looked back to see the offending cyclist in the street as he managed to launch himself over the bars.

There's a good reason they have the bike path curve north coming off of the bridge - it's to force you to slow down. Instead - he took the straight path intended for pedestrians which has an obscured view of anyone or anything that might be waiting to cross the street.

This is my second close call on the Brooklyn Bridge aside from one hard fall that was weather induced. I am thinking its time to add some time to my commute and use the Manhattan Bridge.
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Old 07-25-14, 07:52 AM   #2
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Yeah that's a bad spot, because it pours out into both Centre and Chambers and there is a tremendous amount of foot traffic. Honestly, its up to bikers, like the guy behind you, to either get off their bikes and walk them or SLOW down, like you did. I am all for the cool downhill payoff after a climb over a bridge, but as you are already well aware of (because you are obviously a considerate rider) the northbound Brooklyn Bridge is not the place for it.

Not sure the Manhattan Bridge will be any better for you. The bike path enters out to (if I remember) Christie Street and or the eastern end of Canal, and there is probably even more foot traffic in Chinatown then on Chamber's Street.

Glad you're okay!
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Old 07-25-14, 07:56 AM   #3
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Glad you're okay!
Thanks. I saw your other thread - hope your shoulder is feeling better. PS - get yourself a cell phone mount for your handlebars so you can just glance down instead of fishing for something in your bag or pocket.
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Old 07-25-14, 08:04 AM   #4
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Thanks. I saw your other thread - hope your shoulder is feeling better. PS - get yourself a cell phone mount for your handlebars so you can just glance down instead of fishing for something in your bag or pocket.
Thanks. My shoulder isn't in pain while kept still, but it is locked up when trying to move it without assistance from the other hand. I don't think I fractured a rib like I thought I did, because that's better, and then there is the inevitable road rash and general aches and pains, none of which I care about, because my only concern now is the hope that I didn't do any internal damage to the shoulder that will require rotator cuff surgery. Hopefully it is just stiff and the little bit of frozen shoulder will work its way out in time.

I actually ordered this for the bike a week ago for just that reason, but it isn't here yet:

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Old 07-25-14, 10:18 AM   #5
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There are way too many people riding foolishly in the city and on the bridge. I remember walking on it one day and having a guy buzz by on a road bike, probably doing 25 or more. We were just upslope of one of the towers. I walked around the tower and saw him pulling his front wheel out from the railing. Numbskull. If he had gone much faster and the railing was a little lower, he might have gone right over it onto the deck full of cars below. In congested conditions, watch your speed! That should be common sense, but there are too many would-be speed demons.
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Old 07-25-14, 10:53 AM   #6
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There are way too many people riding foolishly in the city and on the bridge. I remember walking on it one day and having a guy buzz by on a road bike, probably doing 25 or more. We were just upslope of one of the towers. I walked around the tower and saw him pulling his front wheel out from the railing. Numbskull. If he had gone much faster and the railing was a little lower, he might have gone right over it onto the deck full of cars below. In congested conditions, watch your speed! That should be common sense, but there are too many would-be speed demons.
Yeah there are plenty of places to go fast in this city, particularly with all the new bike paths separate from pedestrian paths they are paving here. But doing 20-25 on a downhill on a crowded bridge path is just begging for trouble. The Marine Parkway Bridge can be even worse because it is a narrower path. Thankfully it isn't as heavily trafficked as the Brooklyn or Manhattan Bridges.
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Old 07-25-14, 11:00 AM   #7
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What's with the cell phone mount on a bike? Can't we all put these away?
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Old 07-25-14, 11:16 AM   #8
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What's with the cell phone mount on a bike? Can't we all put these away?
I use it for Map My Ride, to check stats for current speed, average speed, heart rate, and total miles. It isn't like I need to answer calls. lol Those I mostly blow off. Though clearly I have to find a MUCH safer way to use the damned thing than fishing it out of my fanny pack and playing around with it, etc. That's just turned out to be stooooopid.
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Old 07-25-14, 01:15 PM   #9
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Definitely a congested area... Head on a swivel over there. That and low speed. I do my best to be courteous over there, but someone is almost always upset!
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Old 07-25-14, 01:30 PM   #10
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Definitely a congested area... Head on a swivel over there. That and low speed. I do my best to be courteous over there, but someone is almost always upset!
I have crossed the bridge going northbound (south is almost never a problem) where it was so crowded I either pedaled like 3-5 MPH or even just got off the bike for the last segment of it.
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Old 07-25-14, 04:14 PM   #11
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I'm always amazed at the utter disregard some cyclists have for anyone else. And you wonder why we have a bad rep.
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Old 07-27-14, 06:45 PM   #12
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What's with the cell phone mount on a bike? Can't we all put these away?
why? i have one for my Samsung S4, and i always use it with Google Maps if i'm riding by myself on streets i'm unfamiliar with. and trust me, it serves that purpose a whole lot better than my Garmin, which takes too long to upload turns (resulting in usually missing turns) and will from time to time say i'm off route when i'm really not. basically, Google Maps works a whole lot better than any Garmin cycling computer i've ever used, and if it's not in the way of my legs when i'm out of the saddle than there's no reason to get rid of it. also, it's a lot easier (translation: much less distracting) to finger through music when it's right in front of me, than when it's sealed in a Ziplock back in one of my back pockets...
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Old 07-27-14, 08:16 PM   #13
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why? i have one for my Samsung S4, and i always use it with Google Maps if i'm riding by myself on streets i'm unfamiliar with. and trust me, it serves that purpose a whole lot better than my Garmin, which takes too long to upload turns (resulting in usually missing turns) and will from time to time say i'm off route when i'm really not. basically, Google Maps works a whole lot better than any Garmin cycling computer i've ever used, and if it's not in the way of my legs when i'm out of the saddle than there's no reason to get rid of it. also, it's a lot easier (translation: much less distracting) to finger through music when it's right in front of me, than when it's sealed in a Ziplock back in one of my back pockets...
I think the problem here is that there is a safe way to work with devices while cycling and an unsafe way. The unsafe way is what led me to a crash that may have broke a rib or two and definitely injured my shoulder (though hopefully no torn rotator cuff) and the safe way is to have it in front of you, as you suggest, but not take your eyes off the road while cycling through maps, tunes, or whatever. I agree with you that the devices don't need to all categorically be stowed, but I think that there is the tendency of many, myself included, to use them to the point of dangerous distraction. This is where common sense comes in.
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Old 07-27-14, 10:42 PM   #14
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I think the problem here is that there is a safe way to work with devices while cycling and an unsafe way.
you are 100% correct, but in that case the first order of business should be to operate it safely, and if that doesn't work than by all means get rid of it. i only use my phone for 2 things, Google Maps and music, and i won't listen to music or use my headphones if i'm riding with another person. and if i am by myself and listening to music, i only make changes if there's no one near me, whether it be another cyclist or motorist. of course there are going to be complete morons using a phone mount for something stupid like texting or something else that makes them a safety hazard, but that's just how morons are, and in those cases i would be all for removing it...

this is how i roll...
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