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  1. #26
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    You are claiming that the general public has no knowledge of any laws that require cyclists to stay at the edge of the roadway and to clear the way for motor traffic?
    ...laws that require edge riding, clear the way? That's not what traffic laws require of bicyclists - what a bunch of malarky.

    Seems like the situation in Carmel is typisch not of traffic laws but of our nations' entitlement syndrome, a malady where ones' convenience overrides others safety, even that of children, if it means any inconvenience to the mistakenly entitled.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  2. #27
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    You are claiming that the general public has no knowledge of any laws that require cyclists to stay at the edge of the roadway and to clear the way for motor traffic? In short, you claim that the general public believes that cyclists have just as much right to use the roadway as do motorists. I think that few would agree.
    I am saying the general public has such poor knowledge of the laws for cyclists regarding the use of the road that the general public (including LEOs and Judges) make up their own laws and interpretations of laws in a manner as to demonstrate this very lack of knowledge. Even you are demonstrating lack of knowledge by stating that cyclists must clear the way for motor vehicles. Care to quote the law that says cyclists must clear the way for motor vehicles?

  3. #28
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    Originally Posted by John Forester
    You are claiming that the general public has no knowledge of any laws that require cyclists to stay at the edge of the roadway and to clear the way for motor traffic? In short, you claim that the general public believes that cyclists have just as much right to use the roadway as do motorists. I think that few would agree.


    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    I am saying the general public has such poor knowledge of the laws for cyclists regarding the use of the road that the general public (including LEOs and Judges) make up their own laws and interpretations of laws in a manner as to demonstrate this very lack of knowledge. Even you are demonstrating lack of knowledge by stating that cyclists must clear the way for motor vehicles. Care to quote the law that says cyclists must clear the way for motor vehicles?
    I don't know what world you live in, Genec. The purpose of CVC 21202, requiring cyclists to ride at the edge of the roadway, has always been to clear the way for motorists. The purpose of CVC 21208, requiring cyclists to ride in a bike lane when one is present, has always been to clear the way for motorists. Those have always been the purposes of these laws, and that knowledge is common among both the public and the law enforcement community.

    Perhaps, Genec, you are arguing that these laws do not have that purpose, or that the exceptions created in 1976 prevent them from actually carrying out that purpose, but you are arguing that the trouble is caused because these exceptions are not generally known. You are actually supporting my argument about those laws and the need to repeal them, because, if this is your argument, those laws operate with the intent of clearing the way for motorists even though, if properly understood, which they rarely are, they would not so operate.

    Genec, consider what actually occurs instead of what, in your dream world, ought to happen.

  4. #29
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    Originally Posted by John Forester
    You are claiming that the general public has no knowledge of any laws that require cyclists to stay at the edge of the roadway and to clear the way for motor traffic? In short, you claim that the general public believes that cyclists have just as much right to use the roadway as do motorists. I think that few would agree.




    I don't know what world you live in, Genec. The purpose of CVC 21202, requiring cyclists to ride at the edge of the roadway, has always been to clear the way for motorists. The purpose of CVC 21208, requiring cyclists to ride in a bike lane when one is present, has always been to clear the way for motorists. Those have always been the purposes of these laws, and that knowledge is common among both the public and the law enforcement community.

    Perhaps, Genec, you are arguing that these laws do not have that purpose, or that the exceptions created in 1976 prevent them from actually carrying out that purpose, but you are arguing that the trouble is caused because these exceptions are not generally known. You are actually supporting my argument about those laws and the need to repeal them, because, if this is your argument, those laws operate with the intent of clearing the way for motorists even though, if properly understood, which they rarely are, they would not so operate.

    Genec, consider what actually occurs instead of what, in your dream world, ought to happen.
    John, I understand what you think you are trying to say, but my argument is the general public no more knows of the exceptions than they do the laws themselves... and those that do know the laws (such as the judge in San Diego on the Wooley case) tend to misinterpret the laws.

    I used to have the laws for cyclists posted outside my cube at work... and to a person it was expressed by those that read them that they had no idea at all that cyclists had any rights to use the road at all.

    When I go to public places where I am not known as a cyclist, I ask folks (in casual conversation) what they think of cyclists on the road... and most comment that cyclists should not be on roads built for autos, and those folks that do accept cyclists on the roads do so because they think they are doing cyclists a favor.

    Share the road campaigns don't help either... as again it implies that motorists should share (or worse, cyclists should share) that which doesn't belong to cyclists.

    While legally you ARE correct that such laws are discriminatory and in effect should be removed and cyclists should just have the same rules and rights as all other road users, the laws do not really matter as the public has in their minds that bicycles do not belong on the roads, and that there are no laws granting or denying cyclists any rights to the road. The general public just doesn't know. So changing the laws will not affect the way cyclists are treated.

    BTW speaking of DREAM WORLD... you are the one that expects cyclists to be treated fairly based on rules of the road... and that just doesn't happen... and this thread is a fine example of what happens in the real world. Cyclists are shoved, intimidated, honked at, yelled at, and harassed whenever a motorist feels they are in the way... regardless of the the cyclists, legal standing on the road.

    Keep in mind that the most of the CA driving public received their licenses before there was any mention of cyclists in the CA drivers handbook... and even now the mention is minimal at best and doesn't go in to great detail about cyclists having nearly the same rights as motorists. This is where many folks have developed their misunderstanding of the real rules... do you really believe that drivers are out there checking the CA DMV site for information on rules of the road? No, they drive along with their minimal knowledge and make up whatever rules they feel they need.... which is why motorists have to be reminded to yield to peds at right on red... DRIVERS DO NOT KNOW THE LAWS and often fail to comprehend the rules of the road. Drivers know just enough to pass the test, period.

  5. #30
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WPeabody View Post
    Lived in Carmel for 17 years, and lived a block from the River School. Was great for my kids to walk to school, and my son rode to the middle school when he attended there, he took the back way to avoid the traffic in the mornings. In high school though, it was too dicey with the teen drivers, and it's a big honking hill all the way up to the school... in the afternoon traffic is horrendous and the downhill is madness.
    I'm glad to hear, though,Mr. Marden is an advocate for walking and biking.
    Yes, there is that old Carmel attitude that is so prevalent in the place. I've had run-ins while riding with my kids, with very rude prima donnas in their vehicles. There were several psychotically impatient drivers in the area I ran into a lot, especially the woman in an H2 that drives her kids two miles to school, and some whackos who will pass you no matter where you are... sorry about the rant...

    Oh, and the reason so many of them behave that way is that they are overachievers with a lot of social pressure put on them to be super-moms. It's a bit of a contest between them... and they take a lot of speed and drink heavily. I should know, I've been to enough PTA meetings there.

    I think one solution is public awareness, the Pine Cone to start, more police presence when the kids are going to and from school, and hefty fines for driving to endanger. The problem with that is, most of the people living there now, as the OP pointed out, are in the .001 percent of the 1 percent and are alpha wolves. That includes putting pressure on the sheriffs department when one of their kind gets into a bit of a bind with the law. It's true, I've seen it at work...
    Sounds like public awareness is the tactic most suited for quelling this type of problem driver. Bicycle buses of grade school children are causing this motorist so much trouble? That lady needs someone to sell her a clue.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    John, I understand what you think you are trying to say, but my argument is the general public no more knows of the exceptions than they do the laws themselves... and those that do know the laws (such as the judge in San Diego on the Wooley case) tend to misinterpret the laws.

    I used to have the laws for cyclists posted outside my cube at work... and to a person it was expressed by those that read them that they had no idea at all that cyclists had any rights to use the road at all.

    When I go to public places where I am not known as a cyclist, I ask folks (in casual conversation) what they think of cyclists on the road... and most comment that cyclists should not be on roads built for autos, and those folks that do accept cyclists on the roads do so because they think they are doing cyclists a favor.

    Share the road campaigns don't help either... as again it implies that motorists should share (or worse, cyclists should share) that which doesn't belong to cyclists.

    While legally you ARE correct that such laws are discriminatory and in effect should be removed and cyclists should just have the same rules and rights as all other road users, the laws do not really matter as the public has in their minds that bicycles do not belong on the roads, and that there are no laws granting or denying cyclists any rights to the road. The general public just doesn't know. So changing the laws will not affect the way cyclists are treated.

    BTW speaking of DREAM WORLD... you are the one that expects cyclists to be treated fairly based on rules of the road... and that just doesn't happen... and this thread is a fine example of what happens in the real world. Cyclists are shoved, intimidated, honked at, yelled at, and harassed whenever a motorist feels they are in the way... regardless of the the cyclists, legal standing on the road.

    Keep in mind that the most of the CA driving public received their licenses before there was any mention of cyclists in the CA drivers handbook... and even now the mention is minimal at best and doesn't go in to great detail about cyclists having nearly the same rights as motorists. This is where many folks have developed their misunderstanding of the real rules... do you really believe that drivers are out there checking the CA DMV site for information on rules of the road? No, they drive along with their minimal knowledge and make up whatever rules they feel they need.... which is why motorists have to be reminded to yield to peds at right on red... DRIVERS DO NOT KNOW THE LAWS and often fail to comprehend the rules of the road. Drivers know just enough to pass the test, period.
    It is your belief, Genec, that the public believes that cyclists are not legitimate roadway users without having any legal basis for that belief. You express astonishment that you think that I believe that motorists regularly check the CA DMV for information on rules of the road. Don't be silly, of course they don't do that at all frequently, and I have never so argued. My argument is that most everybody recognizes the anti-cyclist laws, which is your argument as well, even for the judicial branch. It is that which they remember, that cyclists are supposed to stay far right, to clear the way for motorists, which is the obvious content of those anti-cyclist laws. Repealing those laws will at least prohibit the enforcement and judicial operations from trying to enforce that prohibition.

    You say that repeal of those laws will not affect the public's actions, because the public operates on nothing but superstition. I say, first, that what the public does is of much less importance than what government does. And I add that over time, once the anti-cyclist laws are no longer effective, the public will discover that it has no legal excuse for being nasty to cyclists, and without that excuse the expressions will diminish.

    Genec, you have been arguing out of both sides of your mouth, that the laws have no effect and that they are the excuse for governmental mistreatment. You can't have it both ways.

  7. #32
    Senior Member sggoodri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    And I add that over time, once the anti-cyclist laws are no longer effective, the public will discover that it has no legal excuse for being nasty to cyclists, and without that excuse the expressions will diminish.
    I believe that elimination of discriminatory laws may also make traffic engineers consider cycling issues more seriously on important roads. Many of them currently believe that a law implying a duty of cyclists to stay out of the way of motorists means that the addition of width to a roadway facilitates bicycling; I suggests that it would be better for traffic engineers to believe that adding width to a roadway facilitates passing. That way traffic engineers might think more practically about where passing should be facilitated rather than thinking that they control where bicycling may or may not be done.

  8. #33
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sggoodri View Post
    I believe that elimination of discriminatory laws may also make traffic engineers consider cycling issues more seriously on important roads. Many of them currently believe that a law implying a duty of cyclists to stay out of the way of motorists means that the addition of width to a roadway facilitates bicycling; I suggests that it would be better for traffic engineers to believe that adding width to a roadway facilitates passing. That way traffic engineers might think more practically about where passing should be facilitated rather than thinking that they control where bicycling may or may not be done.
    Bear in mind that we did not have such laws until about the early '70s. The roads do not reflect traffic engineers not having the laws until then. Laws granting rights and access to the roads for cyclists did occur much earlier, but FRAP laws came later.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    Bear in mind that we did not have such laws until about the early '70s. The roads do not reflect traffic engineers not having the laws until then. Laws granting rights and access to the roads for cyclists did occur much earlier, but FRAP laws came later.
    This statement is largely erroneous. Cyclists were formally granted the rights and duties of drivers of vehicles in, say, 1887. From then until the 1940s their status as legitimate roadway users was unquestioned. Starting about 1940 (1944 in the UVC), cyclists were downgraded to second-class status by the requirement to stay at the edge of the roadway, obviously for the convenience of motorists. In the 1970s this discriminatory requirement was reinforced by bikeways and bikeway laws.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    I used to have the laws for cyclists posted outside my cube at work... and to a person it was expressed by those that read them that they had no idea at all that cyclists had any rights to use the road at all.
    This is truly astonishing to me. I shall have to conduct my own unscientific poll. We're both in SD so at least the city is controlled for ......
    But really, I am deeply skeptical. How can any road user, cyclist or not, believe that cyclists have NO RIGHTS WHATSOEVER. For Pete's sake, this is Amerik-ah, just about every blasted human activity is the subject of some law or other, how could so common and perilous an activity as cycling-on-a-road not be regulated .... [rhetorical]
    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    When I go to public places where I am not known as a cyclist, I ask folks (in casual conversation) what they think of cyclists on the road... and most comment that cyclists should not be on roads built for autos, and those folks that do accept cyclists on the roads do so because they think they are doing cyclists a favor.
    Again I'm skeptical and will widen my own investigation likewise .....

    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    Share the road campaigns don't help either... as again it implies that motorists should share (or worse, cyclists should share) that which doesn't belong to cyclists.
    That would be one theory but the opposite theory has equal or more weight imho. Many people will reasonably assume that the injunction to "share the road" by the authorities will be backed up with some sort of supportive legislation, even if they are clueless as to what that might be exactly.

    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    While legally you ARE correct that such laws are discriminatory and in effect should be removed and cyclists should just have the same rules and rights as all other road users, ....
    Here is where I have to differ with both John and yourself it seems [dons flamesuit ...]. Yes, the laws regarding cyclists on the public roads are discriminatory, and that is how it should be because bicycles are very different to automobiles and the laws should reflect the dramatic differences between the way these vehicles function and are used in practice. To believe otherwise, imho, is to fly in the face of common sense and of the evident and sensible views of the vast majority of road users. That would be a hiding to nothing. And as someone else has nicely pointed out, if the laws were changed to give cyclists absolutely equal rights to the road [not gonna happen ....] there would be a major public backlash that would ultimately NOT be in the interests of the cycling community.
    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    Cyclists are shoved, intimidated, honked at, yelled at, and harassed whenever a motorist feels they are in the way... regardless of the the cyclists, legal standing on the road.
    This is completely inconsistent with my own experience here in sunny San Diego - or anywhere else for that matter. In general, the behavior of motorists that you describe occurs when cyclists have committed (in the mind of the motorist) some sort of offense or stupid move, such as riding well outside of the cycle lane when there is no good reason to do so - e.g. when riding with other cyclists all balled up. Very rarely have I witnessed cyclist "harassment" when the cyclist has not contributed largely in some way but of course this can happen. Yes, I suppose that a very few motorists 'have it in' for cyclists, as is the case for the reverse. These people are pathological but fortunately they are rarer than you seem to believe.
    Last edited by ChasH; 01-02-12 at 07:00 PM.

  11. #36
    Senior Member david58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    ...laws that require edge riding, clear the way? That's not what traffic laws require of bicyclists - what a bunch of malarky.

    Seems like the situation in Carmel is typisch not of traffic laws but of our nations' entitlement syndrome, a malady where ones' convenience overrides others safety, even that of children, if it means any inconvenience to the mistakenly entitled.
    Got a question for you: Does the CA driver's manual address the rules of the road for cyclists? Just how much information is included re the rules that apply to cyclists? Could it be, el Guapo, that just maybe ignorance is a large part of the problem, and that the misconceptions stretch from JAMs to even the nice, law-abiding (as they know them) folks?
    2011 BMC SR02; 2010 Fuji Cross Comp; n+1 on hold today, due to college tuition and a wedding. Some day, some where, over the rainbow, I will get that 29er....

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    David, I've seen other posts in other threads that do excerpt from the CA manual -- which, BTW, is not the sole source for traffic law, and any driver who believes that is an idiot who doesn't deserve to be on the road -- but you make the point: IGNORANCE IS THE PROBLEM. With cyclists being such a small % of road users, traffic law re: cycling on the road just doesn't get the attention it should. And, given what I'VE observed over the last couple decades, any subject NOT directly related to a person's immediate daily activities isn't worth their attention.

    Good intentions or no, too many people are of the belief that their OPINIONS carry the weight of law....

  13. #38
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChasH View Post
    This is truly astonishing to me. I shall have to conduct my own unscientific poll. We're both in SD so at least the city is controlled for ......
    But really, I am deeply skeptical. How can any road user, cyclist or not, believe that cyclists have NO RIGHTS WHATSOEVER. For Pete's sake, this is Amerik-ah, just about every blasted human activity is the subject of some law or other, how could so common and perilous an activity as cycling-on-a-road not be regulated .... [rhetorical]

    Again I'm skeptical and will widen my own investigation likewise .....
    Please do, I myself found it very eye opening. The response from most was that they had no idea there were laws that gave rights to the road to cyclists... The most amusing response was from a motorcycle rider who agreed with the basic rights and stated he was really surprised, based on the few cyclists he saw.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChasH View Post
    That would be one theory but the opposite theory has equal or more weight imho. Many people will reasonably assume that the injunction to "share the road" by the authorities will be backed up with some sort of supportive legislation, even if they are clueless as to what that might be exactly.
    A law to share? That would be somewhat amusing... in fact CA is one of the few states that does not prohibit two vehicles occupying the same lane in the same lateral position... an ironic issue considering that for a motorist to pass a bicycle under the laws of other states would require a motorist to change lanes... if there were no bicycle specific laws.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChasH View Post
    Here is where I have to differ with both John and yourself it seems [dons flamesuit ...]. Yes, the laws regarding cyclists on the public roads are discriminatory, and that is how it should be because bicycles are very different to automobiles and the laws should reflect the dramatic differences between the way these vehicles function and are used in practice. To believe otherwise, imho, is to fly in the face of common sense and of the evident and sensible views of the vast majority of road users. That would be a hiding to nothing. And as someone else has nicely pointed out, if the laws were changed to give cyclists absolutely equal rights to the road [not gonna happen ....] there would be a major public backlash that would ultimately NOT be in the interests of the cycling community.
    I actually agree with you, and hold that bikes are not cars and have unique properties... John and others hold that bikes should have the same rights as motorists.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChasH View Post

    This is completely inconsistent with my own experience here in sunny San Diego - or anywhere else for that matter. In general, the behavior of motorists that you describe occurs when cyclists have committed (in the mind of the motorist) some sort of offense or stupid move, such as riding well outside of the cycle lane when there is no good reason to do so - e.g. when riding with other cyclists all balled up. Very rarely have I witnessed cyclist "harassment" when the cyclist has not contributed largely in some way but of course this can happen. Yes, I suppose that a very few motorists 'have it in' for cyclists, as is the case for the reverse. These people are pathological but fortunately they are rarer than you seem to believe.
    I can give you scads of examples, including being honked at while taking Road 1 and Road 2 cycling classes, while not inhibiting motorists in any way. There are also loads of anecdotes here on BF of everything from harassment by police to a somewhat infamous Dallas lawyer admitting she "shoved" cyclists with her car as they were in her way.

    No it doesn't happen to every cyclist every day; but ride regularly and don't be surprised if you encounter harassment from motorists.

    Me, frankly I am fed up with having to teach motorists they laws they should know. But what the heck, I've only been cycling some 40 years or so, 7 of them car free here in San Diego.

    Regarding laws motorists should know... can you tell me why we are now seeing this sign popping up at many intersections?

    Shouldn't motorists know this law, also?

  14. #39
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by david58 View Post
    Got a question for you: Does the CA driver's manual address the rules of the road for cyclists? Just how much information is included re the rules that apply to cyclists? Could it be, el Guapo, that just maybe ignorance is a large part of the problem, and that the misconceptions stretch from JAMs to even the nice, law-abiding (as they know them) folks?
    You can view the driver handbook at this site.

    http://dmv.ca.gov/pubs/hdbk/driver_handbook_toc.htm

    The bicycle section starts here... http://dmv.ca.gov/pubs/hdbk/shr_slow_veh.htm#bike

    I wonder how many motorists just skim over this part and ignore it?

    Here are some statements from the handbook regarding cyclists...
    Bicyclists:

    Must obey all traffic signals and stop signs.A sign telling drivers to share the road with bicyclists.
    Are lawfully permitted to ride on certain sections of roadway in rural areas where there is no alternate route.
    Must ride in the same direction as other traffic, not against it.
    Shall ride as near to the right curb or edge of the roadway as practical– not on the sidewalk.
    Are legally allowed to ride in the center of the lane when moving at the same speed as other traffic.
    May move left to pass a parked or moving vehicle, bicycle, animal, avoid debris, or other hazards.
    May choose to ride near the left curb or edge of a one-way street.
    Should ride single file on a busy or narrow street.
    Must make left and right turns in the same way that drivers do, using the same turn lanes. If the bicyclist is traveling straight ahead, he or she should use a through traffic lane rather than ride next to the curb and block traffic making right turns.
    Must signal all their intentions to motorists and bicyclists near them.
    Must wear a helmet if under the age of 18.
    Should carry identification.
    Shall not operate a bicycle on a roadway during darkness unless the bicycle is equipped with:
    A brake which will enable the operator to make one braked wheel stop on dry, level, clean pavement.
    BTW that pretty much covers the handbook with regard to cyclists.

    Do you really see this spelled out in the handbook...

    21200. (a) A person riding a bicycle or operating a pedicab upon a highway has all the rights and is subject to all the provisions applicable to the driver of a vehicle by this division...

    Or this:

    21202. (a) Any person operating a bicycle upon a roadway at a speed less than the normal speed of traffic moving in the same direction at that time shall ride as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway except under any of the following situations:

    (1) When overtaking and passing another bicycle or vehicle proceeding in the same direction.

    (2) When preparing for a left turn at an intersection or into a private road or driveway.

    (3) When reasonably necessary to avoid conditions (including, but not limited to, fixed or moving objects, vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, animals, surface hazards, or substandard width lanes) that make it unsafe to continue along the right-hand curb or edge, subject to the provisions of Section 21656. For purposes of this section, a "substandard width lane" is a lane that is too narrow for a bicycle and a vehicle to travel safely side by side within the lane.

    (4) When approaching a place where a right turn is authorized.

    (b) Any person operating a bicycle upon a roadway of a highway, which highway carries traffic in one direction only and has two or more marked traffic lanes, may ride as near the left-hand curb or edge of that roadway as practicable.
    The above law means that if you are at the same speed of other traffic, there is no reason to ride to the right... but it has been used to argue that cyclists should be moving at the posted speed limit, even when other traffic is not doing so... (A judge here in San Diego made that decision)

    Actually 21202 is covered in the handbook with this statement... "Are legally allowed to ride in the center of the lane when moving at the same speed as other traffic."

    But I again wonder, how many motorists actually read this part of the handbook...
    Last edited by genec; 01-03-12 at 12:08 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChasH View Post
    many snips

    Yes, the laws regarding cyclists on the public roads are discriminatory, and that is how it should be because bicycles are very different to automobiles and the laws should reflect the dramatic differences between the way these vehicles function and are used in practice. To believe otherwise, imho, is to fly in the face of common sense and of the evident and sensible views of the vast majority of road users. That would be a hiding to nothing. And as someone else has nicely pointed out, if the laws were changed to give cyclists absolutely equal rights to the road [not gonna happen ....] there would be a major public backlash that would ultimately NOT be in the interests of the cycling community.
    We need to make explicit the equal rights and duties. These are the rights and duties of drivers of vehicles when using the roadway, which the law already grants cyclists. This is not equal to the rights of motorists, who are allowed the use of freeways.

    ChasH argues that "bicycles are very different to automobiles ... [with] dramatic differences between the way these vehicles function and are used." This discussion does not consider the use of automobiles as portable love nests or the like; it is strictly limited to performance in traffic. Please describe these dramatic differences in ability between drivers of vehicles and drivers of bicycles when obeying the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles. Please explain why the differences in ability that you describe justify discriminating against drivers of bicycles.

    ChasH also argues that "if the laws were changed to give cyclists absolutely equal rights to the road ... there would be a major public backlash." I repeat, this refers to the rights and duties of drivers of vehicles. ChasH, please explain on what basis would such a major public backlash. After all, what would be changed? You see, the existing law, CVC 21202, the FTR law, has exceptions that attempt to remove the discrimination whenever that discrimination would contradict the rights and duties of drivers of vehicles. That's what the exceptions are supposed to do, because it has been recognized that operating contrary to the rights and duties of drivers of vehicles endangers cyclists. One of the subjects of this discussion has been that people (public, motorists, law enforcement, judges, etc.) believe that the discrimination is justified by law without understanding the exceptions that largely negate it. As I have argued for so long, the existence of CVC 21202 can only be justified by the belief that the public ought to be made to believe that cyclists ought to be discriminated against. That's a convoluted thought, but when trying to explain the existence of CVC 21202 etc. thought has to be convoluted, because the only rational action is to repeal it as being nasty, unnecessary, and legally impotent, except for the purpose of creating governmental harassment of cyclists.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    We need to make explicit the equal rights and duties. These are the rights and duties of drivers of vehicles when using the roadway, which the law already grants cyclists. This is not equal to the rights of motorists, who are allowed the use of freeways.

    ChasH argues that "bicycles are very different to automobiles ... [with] dramatic differences between the way these vehicles function and are used." This discussion does not consider the use of automobiles as portable love nests or the like; it is strictly limited to performance in traffic. Please describe these dramatic differences in ability between drivers of vehicles and drivers of bicycles when obeying the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles. Please explain why the differences in ability that you describe justify discriminating against drivers of bicycles.
    Oh, that's an easy one, and we've already covered it many times:

    Speed and weight. Not between the drivers, as you call it (though that is often the case, too), but between the "vehicles". Acually, the lack of distinction between motorized vehicles and bicycles seems silly to me. It blocks one from seeing the problems of "taking the lane" at any time. It may be that your laws don't distinguish, but any sensible cyclist should. We're not drivers. We don't drive our bikes, we ride them. We're cyclists. We go at relatively slow speeds. We don't wear the roads down as do cars. We don't pollute. We don't produce noise. We don't kill people. We get excersize.

    Of all the crazy "vehicle"-ideas, the worst is probably thinking that turning left in a crossing like a car is a good idea. 10 seconds of reflection should be enough for anyone to realize that that maneuvre takes an awfull lot more attention to (fast) traffic from all directions than it does to cross it pedestrian-style.

    And basically, I just don't get how cyclists can make themselves insist on taking the lane in fast (like, more than 45 mph) traffic. Not only will they annoy the drivers no end, which will inevitably make some of them act hazardously, they also risk being rammed by the cell phone (and other) idiots - and a lot more so than if they're "hugging the curb" as VC'ers put it. Go FRAP if you find yourself in fast, and not least heavy traffic. Anything else is stupid. Taking the lane is only advicable when you want to continue straight ahead where you have to be sure that right-turning cars mwil see you. They go a lot slower when they have to turn, and they tend to wake up before turning.

    Yeah, I've heard the reasons for taking the lane 1000 times by now. They're mostly no good. Just look at how many American cyclists are being killed in traffic. The basis for VC is that they and car drivers obey the law - but car drivers don't. And even when drivers try to, they have white outs, black outs etc., and that's another reason to stay as far out of harms way as possible.

    Fine, take the lane in slower traffic in the cities, where no decent cycling infrastructure is in place. The more the merrier, and that may slowly get the drivers to realize that there may be bikes elsewhere, too. Just remember: you're a lot more akin to a pedestrian than to a car.
    Last edited by hagen2456; 01-04-12 at 09:29 PM.

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    Originally Posted by John Forester
    Please describe these dramatic differences in ability between drivers of vehicles and drivers of bicycles when obeying the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles. Please explain why the differences in ability that you describe justify discriminating against drivers of bicycles.


    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    Oh, that's an easy one, and we've already covered it many times:

    Speed and weight. Not between the drivers, as you call it (though that is often the case, too), but between the "vehicles". Acually, the lack of distinction between motorized vehicles and bicycles seems silly to me. It blocks one from seeing the problems of "taking the lane" at any time. It may be that your laws don't distinguish, but any sensible cyclist should. We're not drivers. We don't drive our bikes, we ride them. We're cyclists. We go at relatively slow speeds. We don't wear the roads down as do cars. We don't pollute. We don't produce noise. We don't kill people. We get excersize.

    Of all the crazy "vehicle"-ideas, the worst is probably thinking that turning left in a crossing like a car is a good idea. 10 seconds of reflection should be enough for anyone to realize that that maneuvre takes an awfull lot more attention to (fast) traffic from all directions than it does to cross it pedestrian-style.

    And basically, I just don't get how cyclists can make themselves insist on taking the lane in fast (like, more than 45 mph) traffic. Not only will they annoy the drivers no end, which will inevitably make some of them act hazardously, they also risk being rammed by the cell phone (and other) idiots - and a lot more so than if they're "hugging the curb" as VC'ers put it. Go FRAP if you find yourself in fast, and not least heavy traffic. Anything else is stupid. Taking the lane is only advicable when you want to continue straight ahead where you have to be sure that right-turning cars mwil see you. They go a lot slower when they have to turn, and they tend to wake up before turning.

    Yeah, I've heard the reasons for taking the lane 1000 times by now. They're mostly no good. Just look at how many American cyclists are being killed in traffic. The basis for VC is that they and car drivers obey the law - but car drivers don't. And even when drivers try to, they have white outs, black outs etc., and that's another reason to stay as far out of harms way as possible.

    Fine, take the lane in slower traffic in the cities, where no decent cycling infrastructure is in place. The more the merrier, and that may slowly get the drivers to realize that there may be bikes elsewhere, too. Just remember: you're a lot more akin to a pedestrian than to a car.
    Hagen, nothing you have written justifies prohibiting cyclists from obeying the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles, which was the question asked. Clearly, you don't like doing so, but your preference does not justify prohibiting others from obeying the standard rules of the road.

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    Motorists should respect bicycle buses en route to schools. This flagrant endangerment in Carmel CA is not a result of california law. it is an result of obnoxious and threatening operation of a motor vehicle. Happens in all 50 states regardless of how each state regulates bicycle traffic, overseas , great britain and anywhere else there are bikes on the road and motorists too incensed to follow good judgement and rule of law.

    endangerment of bicyclists occurs at times regardless of how states regulate bikes.
    Last edited by Bekologist; 01-05-12 at 04:37 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    Hagen, nothing you have written justifies prohibiting cyclists from obeying the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles, which was the question asked. Clearly, you don't like doing so, but your preference does not justify prohibiting others from obeying the standard rules of the road.
    You still got that strange idea that cyclists and drivers are one-and-the-same-thing? Do you go "vroummm vroumvroumm" on your bike? Do you ride around with an exhaust-producing machine tied to your rack? Do you kill people when speeding and/or being inattentive for a moment?

    Wheelchairs - do they belong on the road among the cars? Are they vehicles, and should thus obey the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles? Following your logic, of course they should. Take the lane!!

    It's madness.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    You still got that strange idea that cyclists and drivers are one-and-the-same-thing? Do you go "vroummm vroumvroumm" on your bike? Do you ride around with an exhaust-producing machine tied to your rack? Do you kill people when speeding and/or being inattentive for a moment?

    Wheelchairs - do they belong on the road among the cars? Are they vehicles, and should thus obey the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles? Following your logic, of course they should. Take the lane!!

    It's madness.
    Again, Hagen, nothing that you have written justifies treating cyclists as less than other drivers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    Again, Hagen, nothing that you have written justifies treating cyclists as less than other drivers.
    Who's talking about "less"? (Apart from you, that is)

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    While drivers of motor vehicles are the same as drivers of bicycles (both are people), motor vehicles and bicycles are not the same, and do not have the same operating characteristics.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    Who's talking about "less"? (Apart from you, that is)
    That "less" is standard American traffic law, which requires cyclists to stay out of the way of same-direction motor traffic, obviously for the convenience of motorists.

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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    While drivers of motor vehicles are the same as drivers of bicycles (both are people), motor vehicles and bicycles are not the same, and do not have the same operating characteristics.
    Please specify the differences in performance between motor vehicles and bicycles that are relevant to traffic movements, and explain how these differences affect traffic movements in such a way that motorists and cyclists should not make these movements according to the same rules of the road.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester View Post
    Please specify the differences in performance between motor vehicles and bicycles that are relevant to traffic movements, and explain how these differences affect traffic movements in such a way that motorists and cyclists should not make these movements according to the same rules of the road.
    what in the world is john grousing about?

    the scenario posted about in the original post could just as likely occurred in Arkansas, where johns' desired traffic rules are in effect.

    .....pedal pedant.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

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