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CA try at 1/2 Idaho stop law

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CA try at 1/2 Idaho stop law

Old 03-03-17, 09:07 PM
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CA try at 1/2 Idaho stop law

Taking bets if it passes or not.

California bicyclists would be allowed to roll past stop signs under proposed law - LA Times
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Old 03-03-17, 10:29 PM
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When these bills are introduced, there are always motor-heads who chime in with their tired claims that people on bikes don't obey the law. Has anyone actually witnessed a motorist deal with a stop sign in a legal manner? Okay, I have, but it's been far less than 0.0001% of the motorists I have seen at stop signs.

Also, there's that whole deal with speed limits being raised to the 85th percentile speed. That pretty much establishes that we trust people to do what is safe and we will change the law to accommodate their behavior, even when we can document that said behavior was in violation of existing law. Granted, motorists don't have a very good track record at actually being safe, but the precedent is still there.
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Old 03-04-17, 07:09 AM
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It would be interesting to see the data comparing bicycle accidents before and after this law. I know SF allows "rolling stops" for bicycles.
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Old 03-04-17, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Hokiedad4 View Post
It would be interesting to see the data comparing bicycle accidents before and after this law. I know SF allows "rolling stops" for bicycles.
A Chicago study finds that Idaho Stop laws are effective and safer for cyclists.
Should bicyclists always halt at stop signs and wait at lights? Study says no - Chicago Tribune

The report pointed to a 2007 London study that found that female cyclists were much more likely to be killed by trucks than men. The study suggested that female cyclists are more vulnerable because they are more likely to obey red traffic lights. By going through a red light, men were less likely to be caught in truck drivers' blind spots, the London study found.
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Old 03-04-17, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
Has anyone actually witnessed a motorist deal with a stop sign in a legal manner?
No, not very often, and this actually supports the idea of Idaho stops. If most drivers are already treating stops as yields, with few incidents, it shows that full stops are generally unnecessary. My city has been installing traffic circles with yield signs to replace intersections with stop signs. The odd think is that most drivers will stop before entering these circles more frequently than they stopped at the previous configuration.


Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
Also, there's that whole deal with speed limits being raised to the 85th percentile speed. That pretty much establishes that we trust people to do what is safe and we will change the law to accommodate their behavior, even when we can document that said behavior was in violation of existing law. Granted, motorists don't have a very good track record at actually being safe, but the precedent is still there.
The 85th percentile rule was rendered null after the passage of the national 55 mph speed limit. Because that limit was ridiculously low on clear, open highways, most drivers flaunted it. This conditioned them to consider any speed limit on any road to be similarly ridiculous. Coupled with the smooth insulated driving comfort of modern cars, the bottom line is that using the 85th percentile will result in speeds well beyond what would be appropriate for mixed traffic.
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Old 03-04-17, 08:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Moe Zhoost View Post
No, not very often, and this actually supports the idea of Idaho stops. If most drivers are already treating stops as yields, with few incidents, it shows that full stops are generally unnecessary. My city has been installing traffic circles with yield signs to replace intersections with stop signs. The odd think is that most drivers will stop before entering these circles more frequently than they stopped at the previous configuration.




The 85th percentile rule was rendered null after the passage of the national 55 mph speed limit. Because that limit was ridiculously low on clear, open highways, most drivers flaunted it. This conditioned them to consider any speed limit on any road to be similarly ridiculous. Coupled with the smooth insulated driving comfort of modern cars, the bottom line is that using the 85th percentile will result in speeds well beyond what would be appropriate for mixed traffic.
That 85th percentile rule has always seemed ignorant to me, because a good portion of those 15% speeders just want to go faster than everyone else. Having little or nothing to do with the actual speed, safe conditions or any other factor that should determine speed limits.
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Old 03-05-17, 08:44 PM
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You go ahead and try and 'Idaho stop' in Idaho and hopefully I get a call from you after the ambulance comes.
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Old 03-05-17, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Rollfast View Post
You go ahead and try and 'Idaho stop' in Idaho and hopefully I get a call from you after the ambulance comes.
Another head in the sand kind of guy that chooses to ignore the data from two states showing the Idaho Stop if safer for cyclist.
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Old 03-05-17, 10:10 PM
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The reality is that Idaho Stop is probably safer then the classic stop laws.

It reinforces the notion that it's about yielding to traffic before entering into an intersection, rather than some arbitrary adherence to a stop law, and forgetting about the more important step.

I rely 100% on actual conditions rather than relying on signals or right of way, because it's traffic that's of concern, not some off chance of getting cited. If I deem it safe to proceed I do so, regardless of the light, and if I have the light, I don't take it as reliable assurance of safety, and check traffic anyway. Likewise, when entering auto traffic has a stop sign.

I suspect that I'm not the only one riding this way, whether anyone is willing to admit it or not.
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Old 03-05-17, 10:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Moe Zhoost View Post
No, not very often, and this actually supports the idea of Idaho stops. If most drivers are already treating stops as yields, with few incidents, it shows that full stops are generally unnecessary. My city has been installing traffic circles with yield signs to replace intersections with stop signs. The odd think is that most drivers will stop before entering these circles more frequently than they stopped at the previous configuration.
I noticed that about traffic circles also because until about a decade ago they were practically non existent here In Washington. Most people seem to be well adapted to them now that they are fairly common.

Something I rarely see mentioned is that even though rolling stops have become almost universal for right turns, it seems most people still do a full, if brief stop when crossing intersections.
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Old 03-05-17, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
The reality is that Idaho Stop is probably safer then the classic stop laws.

It reinforces the notion that it's about yielding to traffic before entering into an intersection, rather than some arbitrary adherence to a stop law, and forgetting about the more important step.

I rely 100% on actual conditions rather than relying on signals or right of way, because it's traffic that's of concern, not some off chance of getting cited. If I deem it safe to proceed I do so, regardless of the light, and if I have the light, I don't take it as reliable assurance of safety, and check traffic anyway. Likewise, when entering auto traffic has a stop sign.

I suspect that I'm not the only one riding this way, whether anyone is willing to admit it or not.
That approach saved my life, and that of my spouse, one fine morning. We had just missed a signal, so we knew we were in for a wait of over a minute. We were riding a tandem, so we stopped on the detection loop, which will give a two-second green to cross eight lanes of traffic. My spouse hopped off and pushed both the cycling beg button, which gives a seven second green phase, and the pedestrian button, which gives a thirty-second green phase.

About a minute later, our light turned green, but we didn't proceed. There was something about the bus and two cars approaching from our right and the fact that the pedestrian signal didn't change that gave us pause. When the three vehicles ripped through the intersection at 45 mph, we were glad we had sensed something was wrong and waited.

It turns out that the bus was able to over-ride the signal and demand a green light for itself. The problem is, the programming had it over-ruling the signal loop and the pedestrian button, but someone neglected to include the bike beg button in the over-ride program. That's why we got a seven-second green but no pedestrian signal while the cross traffic got a green light at the same time. I notified the city, but they refused to procure a bus and check the defect in the bike beg button. The same thing happened a few blocks away and led to a collision between a couple of motor vehicles.

Fun stuff. Not only do we have to watch for red-light runners, we have to watch for simultaneous greens, at least locally. Situational awareness, and then some, is more important than the wording of the law.
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Old 03-05-17, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
Fun stuff. Not only do we have to watch for red-light runners, we have to watch for simultaneous greens, at least locally. Situational awareness, and then some, is more important than the wording of the law.
Simultaneous greens would be a solid basis for a lawsuit against the city, not that you'd want to go there. This is especially hard to defend if it could be shown that the city was made aware of the defect and chose to do nothing.

If you feel strongly about the close call, you might send a certified letter to the city, and CC a few local plaintiff firms. It's not that you want to be nice to plaintiff lawyers, but seeing the CC at the bottom of the letter, will remind the city's attorney that this is a ticking legal time bomb.
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Old 03-05-17, 11:45 PM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
Simultaneous greens would be a solid basis for a lawsuit against the city, not that you'd want to go there. This is especially hard to defend if it could be shown that the city was made aware of the defect and chose to do nothing.

If you feel strongly about the close call, you might send a certified letter to the city, and CC a few local plaintiff firms. It's not that you want to be nice to plaintiff lawyers, but seeing the CC at the bottom of the letter, will remind the city's attorney that this is a ticking legal time bomb.
I've worked with and know the people responsible for the infrastructure. They simply don't care. They are protected from liability by the city, and they don't really care if the city has to pay out (or about the lives of people who ride bikes). My communications to them are public records. If anyone should happen to come to harm because of these simultaneous green situations, I'll alert the families of the people involved so they can tell their attorneys to get the emails that were exchanged between the city staff and me.
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Old 03-06-17, 12:38 AM
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Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
Another head in the sand kind of guy that chooses to ignore the data from two states showing the Idaho Stop if safer for cyclist.

I live a mile from Idaho, my mom and kin request silence until they are outside of Caldwell taking me home and just about all the way into Nampa and Boise from Ontario. The territories I pedaled as a preteen are a No Man's Land now.
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Old 03-06-17, 02:58 AM
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At my old house I lived on a residential street and I had a stop sign right in front of my house. I set up a video camera and filmed hours of cars on multiple days. I would say the percentage of cars that made a complete stop was less than 1%. About 80% of cars simply just slowed down.
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Old 03-06-17, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Rollfast View Post
I live a mile from Idaho, my mom and kin request silence until they are outside of Caldwell taking me home and just about all the way into Nampa and Boise from Ontario. The territories I pedaled as a preteen are a No Man's Land now.
Whoop, whoop, I lived and went to school in Idaho.
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Old 03-06-17, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
I suspect that I'm not the only one riding this way, whether anyone is willing to admit it or not.
Many of us have noted that we cycle that way as well. I also motor that way.
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Old 03-06-17, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
Many of us have noted that we cycle that way as well. I also motor that way.
The subtle difference is that taking stops and red lights as yields in a car can get you cited. On a bike, the local cops are very friendly to me, and don't care because they know I'm acting reasonably.

BTW - It helps to be friendly (or at least non-antagonistic) to the local cops. Some time back I was pulled over for a rolling stop in the car. The cop recognized me, and reminded me that I wasn't on the bike before letting me go.
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Old 03-06-17, 09:52 PM
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Originally Posted by KingCat View Post
At my old house I lived on a residential street and I had a stop sign right in front of my house. I set up a video camera and filmed hours of cars on multiple days. I would say the percentage of cars that made a complete stop was less than 1%. About 80% of cars simply just slowed down.
How many accidents did you record?
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Old 03-08-17, 12:23 AM
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Originally Posted by f4rrest View Post
How many accidents did you record?
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Old 03-08-17, 07:16 AM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
The reality is that Idaho Stop is probably safer then the classic stop laws.

It reinforces the notion that it's about yielding to traffic before entering into an intersection, rather than some arbitrary adherence to a stop law, and forgetting about the more important step.
You suggest (in the following) that people don't actually forget.

I don't there's any good basis for suspecting it's safer (That's just rationalizing).

Cyclists already ignore what the current law "reinforces". It's not likely that they will magically pay more attention to a different law.

Cyclists will keep doing the same thing they did before the new law (the new law won't change cyclist behavior).

I don't think it's less safe because it codifies what many people do already (the proposed law makes standard behavior legal).

Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
I rely 100% on actual conditions rather than relying on signals or right of way, because it's traffic that's of concern, not some off chance of getting cited. If I deem it safe to proceed I do so, regardless of the light, and if I have the light, I don't take it as reliable assurance of safety, and check traffic anyway. Likewise, when entering auto traffic has a stop sign.

I suspect that I'm not the only one riding this way, whether anyone is willing to admit it or not.
It's easy enough to also "check traffic anyway".

The Idaho Stop works for bicycles because the are (generally) going fairly slow.

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Old 03-08-17, 07:42 AM
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I'd rather have the option of doing whatever is safest. Some intersections it is safer to come to a complete stop. Others it is better to get through them as soon as possible. However, I'm always prepared to stop at all stop signs and yield to traffic.

Side story...I was rear ended once, in my car, at a stop sign. The lady's excuse was "Everybody runs this stop sign. I expected you would too."
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Old 03-08-17, 08:09 AM
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I generally (about 80% of the time) come to a complete stop. I believe that it is actually more dangerous to slavishly obey the stop law. Why? Because car drivers don't obey it and they don't expect anyone else to obey it either. I have nearly been rear-ended several times when I came to a full stop at a stop sign because the car behind me expected me to roll the sign. I come to a stop and the car behind me clearly has to brake aggressively to avoid hitting me because they didn't expect anyone to stop.

I have experienced the same when driving a car - people having to brake hard because I came to a complete stop and apparently the driver behind me has never seen such a thing before.

I've been watching car drivers at stop signs now for several years and I'd say the number of drivers that come to a complete stop at a stop sign, when there's not cross traffic present, is certainly < 5%, possibly < 1%. It almost seems like they're playing a game where they get penalized if they stop. Even if there's cross traffic present, many drivers will try to not actually stop, they'll be creeping forward at an inch per second and only actually stop if they get their nose a few feet out into the intersection and still don't have a clear escape.
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Old 03-12-17, 08:44 PM
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Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
Whoop, whoop, I lived and went to school in Idaho.

I was saved and converted to an Oregonian 38 years ago, and it was a heavenly blessing.
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Old 03-13-17, 06:34 AM
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Originally Posted by ItsJustMe View Post
I have experienced the same when driving a car - people having to brake hard because I came to a complete stop and apparently the driver behind me has never seen such a thing before.

I've been watching car drivers at stop signs now for several years and I'd say the number of drivers that come to a complete stop at a stop sign, when there's not cross traffic present, is certainly < 5%, possibly < 1%. It almost seems like they're playing a game where they get penalized if they stop.
I have the feeling that many drivers aren't fully aware that they aren't stopping. My mother never had a driver's license until I left home to go to college. I helped teach her to drive and one day mentioned to her that while what she did at Stop signs was safe and consistent with most other drivers that when taking the driving test she should make sure to actually come to a full stop. She insisted that she always did that. So when approaching the next Stop sign I told her that after she felt she had stopped she should push hard on the brake pedal. We were probably only going 1 - 2 mph but the resulting lurch into the seatbelt finally convinced her that we hadn't been stopped.
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