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Old 02-18-10, 11:27 PM   #1
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Just so we're clear

Just so we're clear on the whole 'take the lane' thing, what we're doing is putting our lives in the hands of the person driving that 2-tonne meat grinder quickly approaching us from behind, and that person could very well be someone just like these...

[video=youtube;c9aWSKMiPL0]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9aWSKMiPL0&feature=related[/video]

[video=youtube;FZ12Ry-hD6I]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FZ12Ry-hD6I&NR=1[/video]

If you're OK with that then more power to you, but I will take segregated facilities or the sidewalk before putting my life in those hands.
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Old 02-19-10, 08:29 AM   #2
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Yikes! And remember these are only the ones that got recorded and sent to youtube.

Last edited by genec; 02-19-10 at 08:33 AM.
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Old 02-19-10, 08:48 AM   #3
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Funny thing is the lady in the car didn't really get any help. If she forgets the phone call she's screwed again.

This is a hoot, too.
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Old 02-19-10, 11:35 AM   #4
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Funny thing is the lady in the car didn't really get any help. If she forgets the phone call she's screwed again.

This is a hoot, too.
no doubt she's probably the type that just yaks away at the phone all day while driving... clueless bimbo!
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Old 02-19-10, 11:42 AM   #5
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Riding on the sidewalk is illegal in many places, and is actually less safe than riding on the street. The last cyclist killed in a collison here--or at least the last one that made the paper--was killed while riding on the sidewalk, the wrong way on a one-way street. A woman pulled out of a parking garage and naturally was not expecting a cyclist on the sidewalk coming from the wrong direction.
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Old 02-19-10, 12:11 PM   #6
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Wonder if the woman pulling out of the parking garage was aware that sidewalks aren't one-way and there could have been joggers, children, and even bicycles coming from both directions. It's her responsibility to look both ways crossing the sidewalk and the cyclist probably should have slowed down and paid more attention.

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Old 02-19-10, 12:13 PM   #7
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Uninteresting bit of trolling, this.
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Old 02-19-10, 12:34 PM   #8
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Riding on the sidewalk is illegal in many places, and is actually less safe than riding on the street. The last cyclist killed in a collison here--or at least the last one that made the paper--was killed while riding on the sidewalk, the wrong way on a one-way street. A woman pulled out of a parking garage and naturally was not expecting a cyclist on the sidewalk coming from the wrong direction.
Was she expecting pedestrians "coming from the wrong direction?"

I've watched countless motorists look only one way as they enter a road while making right turns on red or while entering a road from a parking lot... they simply never look to the right... and thus have no clue that anyone (bike or otherwise) can be there. (this IS one of those car slapping situations, BTW.)
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Old 02-19-10, 12:35 PM   #9
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Uninteresting bit of trolling, this.
Oh I donno, I got a chuckle out of it...
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Old 02-19-10, 05:12 PM   #10
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Hypotheticals like this always leave out one salient point that makes the whole drama go away -- in this case, the idea that the '2-tonne meat grinder' is always driven by someone like the careless fools in the vids, or someone who immediately reaches critical road-rage mass upon seeing a bike in the road. Also, there's the idea that there are roads that won't be cluttered with meat grinders at every moment -- y'know, like side streets and such.

Play with your routes whenever you can; seek variety. Keeps things fresh. And you will more likely find that 'magic' route that only sees a reckless driver once every 100,000 drivers.
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Old 02-19-10, 05:14 PM   #11
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Hypotheticals like this always leave out one salient point that makes the whole drama go away -- in this case, the idea that the '2-tonne meat grinder' is always driven by someone like the careless fools in the vids, or someone who immediately reaches critical road-rage mass upon seeing a bike in the road. Also, there's the idea that there are roads that won't be cluttered with meat grinders at every moment -- y'know, like side streets and such.

Play with your routes whenever you can; seek variety. Keeps things fresh. And you will more likely find that 'magic' route that only sees a reckless driver once every 100,000 drivers.
But it only takes ONE!
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Old 02-19-10, 05:53 PM   #12
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Even 1 bad driver in 100,000 not so good odds over time for frequent cyclists.

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... there are roads that won't be cluttered with meat grinders at every moment -- y'know, like side streets and such. Play with your routes whenever you can; seek variety. Keeps things fresh. And you will more likely find that 'magic' route that only sees a reckless driver once every 100,000 drivers.
Consider someone taking a not extremely busy route who encounters just 8 cars per day of biking commuting 5 days/week for 25 weeks/year. That would be 1,000 such encounters per year. Do that for 10 years for 10,000 motor vehicle encounters. Odds you are not hit would be 0.99999^10,000 = 0.9048369 or about 90%. Over 20 years it is only 82% you would go motor vehicle collision free. Only a tiny percent of inattentive, incompetent, etc. drivers is needed to have the odds of a collision with a motor vehicle 1 in 10 to 1 in 5 for a frequent cyclist.

As you suggest, taking the side roads is often a way to tilt the odds more in a cyclist's favor. And that is one of the things I do.

It also makes me think (or hope) the odds of a really drunk, etc. driver are less than 1 in 100,000.

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Old 02-19-10, 07:12 PM   #13
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Consider someone taking a not extremely busy route who encounters just 8 cars per day of biking commuting 5 days/week for 25 weeks/year. That would be 1,000 such encounters per year. Do that for 10 years for 10,000 motor vehicle encounters. Odds you are not hit would be 0.99999^10,000 = 0.9048369 or about 90%. Over 20 years it is only 82% you would go motor vehicle collision free. Only a tiny percent of inattentive, incompetent, etc. drivers is needed to have the odds of a collision with a motor vehicle 1 in 10 to 1 in 5 for a frequent cyclist.

As you suggest, taking the side roads is often a way to tilt the odds more in a cyclist's favor. And that is one of the things I do.

It also makes me think (or hope) the odds of a really drunk, etc. driver are less than 1 in 100,000.
So if good drivers are 99% of all the motorists out there, 1 in 100 is a bad/distracted/drunk driver... The odds don't look that great for a cyclist on busy roads.
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Old 02-19-10, 07:32 PM   #14
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Consider someone taking a not extremely busy route who encounters just 8 cars per day of biking commuting 5 days/week for 25 weeks/year. That would be 1,000 such encounters per year. Do that for 10 years for 10,000 motor vehicle encounters. Odds you are not hit would be 0.99999^10,000 = 0.9048369 or about 90%.
No, by your calculation the odds are 90% that you won't encounter a reckless driver, not avoid being hit. Not every pass/encounter by a reckless driver is a guaranteed collision. Of course, not every collision is caused by habitually reckless drivers, either. Even good drivers can have a bad moment.
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Old 02-20-10, 01:40 PM   #15
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No, by your calculation the odds are 90% that you won't encounter a reckless driver, not avoid being hit. Not every pass/encounter by a reckless driver is a guaranteed collision. Of course, not every collision is caused by habitually reckless drivers, either. Even good drivers can have a bad moment.
In the hypothetical example, the previous poster posited a driver that would be highly likely to collide with the cyclist. The point is that even if an event seems rare, if it you experience this risk numerous times it becomes surprisingly probable it will happen to you at least once.

To be sure, if a motorist is extremely impaired, they probably do not get far before colliding with a lamp post etc. The dangerous motorists are those impaired within a range where they can keep the car on the road but have a relatively high probabliity (say, 1 in 1000) of colliding with a cyclist because cyclists are encountered less frequently, are less visible, etc. To that end, minimizing the number of encounters with motor vehicles is a good strategy provided it does not create other hazardous situations. One that affects my commuting route choice is mid-block crossings by bike paths, particularly where parked cars obscure the sight lines. I take the bike path for about two miles because it has only three grade-level crossings, all mid-block. However, once the path has a mid-block crossing about every 200 feet, I take the side streets with minimal motorized traffic and change the hazards I look for (e.g. potholes, L&R crosses, etc.).
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Old 02-20-10, 02:10 PM   #16
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Yikes! And remember these are only the ones that got recorded and sent to youtube.
In general, 911 calls are all recorded, and available via FOIA requests (or maybe you could just ask?) Though you're right about those that make it to youtube ...

As for the original troll, we're aware of the dangers of riding in the street and riding on the sidewalk, and we generally make an informed decision. Troll fail.
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Old 02-20-10, 02:58 PM   #17
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As for the original troll, we're aware of the dangers of riding in the street and riding on the sidewalk, and we generally make an informed decision. Troll fail.
+1

[video=youtube;1EWGpZwwoM8]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EWGpZwwoM8[/video]
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Old 02-20-10, 04:11 PM   #18
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If you're OK with that then more power to you, but I will take segregated facilities or the sidewalk before putting my life in those hands.
1) Statistically one of the rarest accidents.

2) You can still be killed (and apparently at a higher rate, actually) on the sidewalk. Or even bike lanes, etc.

3) Try again.
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Old 02-20-10, 04:12 PM   #19
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+1

[video=youtube;1EWGpZwwoM8]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EWGpZwwoM8[/video]
Anti-literacy dogs!
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Old 02-20-10, 04:42 PM   #20
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Well, the sidewalk isn't exactly safe either ...
[video=youtube;QAGbskqynRU]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAGbskqynRU[/video]
[video=youtube;nZYRh6Gjy7k]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nZYRh6Gjy7k[/video]
etc.
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Old 04-20-10, 03:17 PM   #21
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You have to use some common sense when picking routes. I don't ride my bike on the 5-lane 40-55 mph urban freeway that I take to work when I'm driving my truck. I've seen people do it on a bike, but it's not for me.
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Old 04-20-10, 03:54 PM   #22
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1) Statistically one of the rarest accidents.

2) You can still be killed (and apparently at a higher rate, actually) on the sidewalk. Or even bike lanes, etc.

3) Try again.
Killed at a higher rate in BL... is that perhaps because bike lanes are at the side of the road where most cyclists statistically ride? That is like saying that MUPs are more dangerous because there are more collisions there... and how often do MUP collisions lead to death?

Take away the BL stripes and most cyclists are killed at the side of the road, get cyclists to ride somewhere else on the road, and it still comes down to most cyclists are killed by motor vehicles.

Nice twist on statistics. Lies, damn lies and statistics...
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Old 04-20-10, 03:56 PM   #23
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You have to use some common sense when picking routes. I don't ride my bike on the 5-lane 40-55 mph urban freeway that I take to work when I'm driving my truck. I've seen people do it on a bike, but it's not for me.
What if that is the ONLY road? Then how would you get to A from B?
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Old 05-03-10, 09:05 AM   #24
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Truthfully? I'm not sure I'd ever ride my bike to work.
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Old 05-03-10, 12:17 PM   #25
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You have to use some common sense when picking routes. I don't ride my bike on the 5-lane 40-55 mph urban freeway that I take to work when I'm driving my truck. I've seen people do it on a bike, but it's not for me.
It is illegal to cycle on all the urban freeways in metro Phx. They may be 40-55 during rush hour, but they are posted at 55 or 65mph.
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