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Old 02-05-17, 11:56 PM   #51
kickstart
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I don't "feel safe" when riding, I ride safely and don't worry.
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Old 02-07-17, 11:50 AM   #52
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Minor accident in gradeschool.

30+ years of riding, and no bike/vehicle accidents. A couple of single bike "incidents"

A few close calls including a few memorable ones over the years. I try to learn from the close calls, and adjust my riding to make myself safer (not dependent on others around me).

Occasionally someone will yell something unintelligible out the window. I just ignore them.
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Old 02-07-17, 12:58 PM   #53
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Deep question, thoughtful answers here.

In my city things are much, much better than they were back in the 20th Century, both because there is (however imperfect) bike infrastructure and because there are more bicyclists on the roads. While I think, informally, that the former helped lead to the later, I think the later may be more important. Not only is driver behavior better because a bike on the street isn't such a novelty, but that driver is more likely to be a cyclist, however infrequently, now-a-days.

I enjoy riding, even in the winter, but I don't enjoy sharing the road with cars. I was going to enter into a semi-long discussion of the shortcomings of some bike lanes here, but it goes beyond that anyway. Besides the dangers off cars and drivers that require alertness, they are noisy and smelly. As a result my favorite riding here is often off-hours, and when not on separate bike ways, it's on less-used side streets, where I might see 1 or 2 cars per mile.

Because I occasionally do what I call semi-touring (longer day trips mostly) I ride sometimes on roads that do scare me a bit. I still ride. And even in the city, destinations will still partly dictate my routes.

Frankly, I don't have the data to make an actuary risk/benefit analysis on my riding. The joy outweighs the fear, and at my age, if I don't move my joints they stiffen up, and my overall well-being requires at least the moderate exercise I get on my bike.

So, yeah, I'm sometimes scared, though more often not. And accept this because I know for sure I'd miss it, and I know for sure that my body benefits in the short term from some activity.
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Old 02-07-17, 03:21 PM   #54
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I started the survey, but I'm not convinced their assumptions match my experience, and it looked like it would take at least 20 min of questions before it would let me type anything useful.

My biggest issues:
The survey seems asks a lot about facilities and group rides
I think enforcement is a more important issue than facilities
The facilities I see locally rarely improve safety. They seem to be designed for weak minimum standards, which are then not implemented
I ride more for transportation, so many questions about group size are not relevant.

Fortunately for me, most of the suburban drivers are smarter than the planners, and don't get upset with bicyclists acting like traffic. The urban drivers honk and swear much more, but can't go fast enough to really get dangerous. (In congested traffic, they honk and swear at each other too, I don't think the bicycle is really the problem).

I don't consider bicycling dangerous; some areas may not always be pleasant, but bicycling is better than driving or sitting at home.
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Old 02-07-17, 03:28 PM   #55
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I took took the survey but almost stopped because I felt it was heavily skewed to the assumption that the roads are full of distracted and/or aggressive drivers. I don't find that to be true.
Yes, I was kind of getting the feeling that the bicycle magazine was running these leading survey questions so they can run an article saying, "X% of cyclists say they feel distracted or aggressive drivers are a danger."
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Old 02-07-17, 03:36 PM   #56
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And frankly, even though I've never experienced a distracted driver while riding my bike, I always keep the idea in the back of my mind that every vehicle I encounter on the street could be being piloted by someone involved in a conversation via text message. Perhaps my fears are unfounded, perhaps not.
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Old 02-17-17, 07:27 AM   #57
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Seems like Bicycling is planning on doing an article based on this survey. I just saw this in one of my periodical emails from them. How Safe Do You Feel When You Ride? | Bicycling

When I clicked on the Survey link (on the above link), it showed I already did the survey.
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Old 02-17-17, 10:03 AM   #58
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I feel safer than I did 20 years ago, for a couple of reasons - motorists are now much more accustomed to seeing cyclists after the "Lance effect" drastically increased the number of cyclists on the road, and I'm more experienced.

I'm fortunate to live in the NE where there are plenty of small roads with relatively light, low(er) speed traffic using which you can ride in any direction for hundreds of miles. Normally I feel relatively safe - safe enough that when I think about safety before a ride I'm mostly concerned with my own actions (being alert, not escalating negative encounters with motorists, and the like).

As most have stated in this thread, aggressive drivers are not actually that prevalent, even here less than 25 miles from NYC. And the roads I ride on are usually small with turns, hills and curves - not really conducive to cell phone and other distractions - most people are fairly alert.

That said, there are occasions where I feel threatened, and I don't intend to minimize the experiences of anyone else - every place and every rider is different. Surprisingly I feel threatened more often while running than while cycling - I'm flabbergasted by how closely drivers feel it is appropriate to pass runners. I mostly run off the road (I vastly prefer sidewalks or dirt to the travel lane), but there are some places where there is no option.

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Old 02-17-17, 03:38 PM   #59
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How Safe Do You Feel When You Ride?

It just occurred to me, having replied early in the thread, has anyone commented about safety from other than cars?, i.e.what about the neighborhood? I'm pretty lucky that way, but I still do not take isolated MUPS after dark.

One of my routes is along the well-trod Jamaica Pond Bikepath along the busy Jamaicaway thoroughfare, even early AM, but one segment runs about 100 yards through a grove of trees, hidden from the road. I avoid that segment via a calm street.

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Old 02-17-17, 03:51 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
How Safe Do You Feel When You Ride?

It just occurred to me, having replied early in the thread, has anyone commented about safety from other than cars?, i.e.what about the neighborhood? I'm pretty lucky that way, but I still do not take isolated MUPS after dark.
We've got several "isolated" MUPS around here.

I suppose I'm not a big target myself, but I like the paths that aren't near busy streets, and with trees, river, etc.

During daylight hours, it is probably safe for anybody. After dark, unfortunately women should probably be in at least groups of 2, but even so, someone on a bike is probably fine.
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Old 02-21-17, 04:52 PM   #61
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I was recently involved in a collision with a motor vehicle. I'm not going to post more details because of pending litigation. It was the vehicle's fault. My leg is badly broken, I've been unable to go back to work yet, and my bicycle was destroyed. My family was also terrified by the incident. Unfortunately, it only takes one bad driver or one mistake by one driver to cause a serious problem, even if the vast majority of drivers handle cyclists well. I'm not sure if I'll be able to go back to riding on the road. Assuming I don't have continuing complications, I may stick the trails for a while if I'm able to ride again.
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Old 02-21-17, 09:12 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
How Safe Do You Feel When You Ride?

It just occurred to me, having replied early in the thread, has anyone commented about safety from other than cars?, i.e.what about the neighborhood? I'm pretty lucky that way, but I still do not take isolated MUPS after dark.

One of my routes is along the well-trod Jamaica Pond Bikepath along the busy Jamaicaway thoroughfare, even early AM, but one segment runs about 100 yards through a grove of trees, hidden from the road. I avoid that segment via a calm street.

I assume that's because this and other surveys I've seen ask extensive questions about the speed and volume of motor vehicle traffic, harassment & assault by motorists, choice of route to avoid traffic, etc, but ignore problems like signals that won't change, bike lanes that are 2' wide, or bad road surfaces.

My impression from discussions with the planners at public meetings is that they do not believe bicyclists are allowed to use the general travel lane when a bike lane is present (even filled with 2'-3' of snow from the road), but that they don't see blocking the bike lane with snow as a problem since they've said bicyclists should not be riding in rush hour, at night, in snow etc.

I find badly designed and maintained facilities to be a bigger hazard than most motorists (most local drivers are smarter than the planners). Generally these survey seem to be intended to justify more facilities, so they need to be specific on the hazards they consider (i.e. scary drivers, not facilities that violate weak standards).
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Old 02-21-17, 10:01 PM   #63
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I feel about as safe on my bike as I do with anytime I'm outdoors.
This.
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Old 02-22-17, 06:56 AM   #64
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Generally feel safe as I usually ride on MUPs. Multiple Use Paths. These paths are frequently criticized here but biking without concern for cars is wonderful. I do have to cross traffic roads and I follow all lights and stop signs. Wear a helmet too.
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Old 02-22-17, 10:03 AM   #65
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Moutain biking and MUPs - as safe any other motion sports I do, but street is a different matter.

I enjoy riding in a city environment where there's more cyclists, relatively low speed differentials, and even in thicker traffic when a bicycle is as fast, or faster, than vehicular traffic.

I'm OK in the suburbs and on country roads with low traffic and posted 35mph or below (everyone drives 10 over), but I despise heavier traffic with small/no shoulders, posted 40+, arterial roads. Hate the feeling of being a helpless turtle in an elephant stampede - cross your fingers and hope you don't side-swiped... or aggressively take the lane and fuel the road rage.
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Old 02-22-17, 10:44 AM   #66
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thanks for the link.
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Old 02-22-17, 02:07 PM   #67
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I don't feel any real fear when I'm out riding, any more than when I'm driving, and both are dangerous to one degree or another.
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Old 02-22-17, 02:54 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AngeloDolce View Post
I started the survey, but I'm not convinced their assumptions match my experience..
I ride more for transportation, so many questions about group size are not relevant.

Fortunately for me, most of the suburban drivers are smarter than the planners, and don't get upset with bicyclists acting like traffic. The urban drivers honk and swear much more..
Two thoughts: I too ride on my work commute and the questions seemed targeted to recreational riding. I put that in the comments section, a couple times.
Secondly, around here I'd rather be downtown than the burbs. There are little/no dedicated bike infrastructure on my route but I'd rather be in the slower busy traffic downtown than buzzed by 50mph traffic on the two-lane with no shoulder in the burb.

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..ignore problems like signals that won't change, bike lanes that are 2' wide, or bad road surfaces.
Agree.
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Old 02-22-17, 08:58 PM   #69
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Survey from Bicycling Magazine. I don't normally do them, but I did this one. I feel very safe when I ride, but I'm also a very observant and defensive rider and I follow the rules of the road. How Safe Do You Feel When You Ride? | Bicycling
Defensive is the key word!
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Old 02-23-17, 11:00 PM   #70
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I feel as safe as long as I'm not stupid. Once in a while, I'm slightly stupid. Thankfully I catch myself.
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Old 02-26-17, 11:19 PM   #71
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I assume that's because this and other surveys I've seen ask extensive questions about the speed and volume of motor vehicle traffic, harassment & assault by motorists, choice of route to avoid traffic, etc, but ignore problems like signals that won't change, bike lanes that are 2' wide, or bad road surfaces.

My impression from discussions with the planners at public meetings is that they do not believe bicyclists are allowed to use the general travel lane when a bike lane is present (even filled with 2'-3' of snow from the road), but that they don't see blocking the bike lane with snow as a problem since they've said bicyclists should not be riding in rush hour, at night, in snow etc.

I find badly designed and maintained facilities to be a bigger hazard than most motorists (most local drivers are smarter than the planners). Generally these survey seem to be intended to justify more facilities, so they need to be specific on the hazards they consider (i.e. scary drivers, not facilities that violate weak standards).

When it snows nobody expects you to be riding a bike. A bike lane is often next to the area where cars park as well. But a bike lane is not mandatory. If it would help you to know we had snow piled taller than me on the side of some roads (I'm 5' 8") and on top of that it was not a condition that I would ever ride on!


Don't you have buses?
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Old 03-02-17, 06:31 PM   #72
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When it snows nobody expects you to be riding a bike. A bike lane is often next to the area where cars park as well. But a bike lane is not mandatory. If it would help you to know we had snow piled taller than me on the side of some roads (I'm 5' 8") and on top of that it was not a condition that I would ever ride on!


Don't you have buses?
We have a some buses, but I think they are meant to let motorists use park and ride lots outside of downtwon, and reduce congestion at rush hour, not to serve people that don't drive. Once you're past 3 miles from the middle of town, buses run only during rush hour, or every 1-4 hours (not at all on Sundays or holidays), and bus service is frequently canceled in snow storms.

My experience is that local planners mostly ride for recreation, do think bike lanes are mandatory, and can't imagine bicycling to the same places they drive. Their reaction to bicyclists using left turn lanes has been that the bicyclists are too aggressive, not that there is a serious problem trying to make a left turn from a bike lane inside a RTOL lane. Fortunately the drivers in the left turn lanes are smarter than the planners.

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Old 03-02-17, 07:39 PM   #73
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Accidents happen and I've had a couple of close calls (my fault) but I've learned from them and generally feel safe. Overall much safer than if I stayed home and watched the arteries keep clogging up.
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Old 03-02-17, 11:02 PM   #74
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They'll do it anyway.
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Old 03-03-17, 10:21 AM   #75
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I feel safer commuting 1 hour by bike that I do 20 minutes by car.
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