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Taking The Lane

Old 09-27-18, 03:02 PM
  #1  
Chris0516
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Taking The Lane

Yesterday, I was on a two-lane blacktop. As part of my route to get to my doctors' appointment. When an 18-wheeler got behind me. The truck driver 'sat on his horn', all the way to the split(straight/right turn-only) in our side of the road. Before I made my right-turn, I looked at the driver. They started shouting, saying there was more than enough room for him to pass me in the lane. I told them that there was no room to 'share the lane' side-by-side, and I wasn't going to end up like a squirrel.


I called their supervisor today, and reported them. I am going to check back in a week to make sure the supervisor talked to the driver.

Last edited by Chris0516; 09-28-18 at 10:51 PM.
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Old 09-27-18, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Chris0516 View Post
Yesterday, I was on a two-lane blacktop, as part of my route to get to my doctors' appointment. When an 18-wheeler got behind me. The 'sat on his horn', all the way to the split(straight/right turn-only) in our side of the road. Before I made my right-turn, I looked at the driver. They started shouting, saying there was more than enough room for him to pass me in the lane. I told them that there was, and I wasn't going to end up like a squirrel.


I called their supervisor today, and reported them. I am going to check back in a week to make sure the supervisor talked to the driver.
Using a great deal of inference and error correction I think I have the bones of your story straight but you sure didn't make it easy. I guess there was a point to your sharing this but I'm missing it. I sure hope it wasn't encouragement for more of us to follow your lead.
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Old 09-28-18, 01:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Using a great deal of inference and error correction I think I have the bones of your story straight but you sure didn't make it easy. I guess there was a point to your sharing this but I'm missing it. I sure hope it wasn't encouragement for more of us to follow your lead.
The title said enough, as to the point. But I guess you like riding side-by-side, in the same lane. With a 26-Ton vehicle where you can be totally in their blind spot.
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Old 09-28-18, 01:28 AM
  #4  
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Originally Posted by Chris0516 View Post
The title said enough, as to the point. But I guess you like riding side-by-side, in the same lane. With a 26-Ton vehicle where you can be totally in their blind spot.
If you don't have your 3 ft., or determine that its just unsafe, you have every right to take the lane. If the semi drive doesn't understand that that's his ignorance.

As for the shouting part, I try to avoid it, since you're unlikely to change anybody's position in a shouting match in the street. At worst, it will provoke anger and he's a lot bigger than you. If I do say anything, I keep it passive and succinct, and simply state: read the handbook. And ride on.
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Old 09-28-18, 02:12 AM
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Originally Posted by KraneXL View Post
If you don't have your 3 ft., or determine that its just unsafe, you have every right to take the lane. If the semi drive doesn't understand that that's his ignorance.

As for the shouting part, I try to avoid it, since you're unlikely to change anybody's position in a shouting match in the street. At worst, it will provoke anger and he's a lot bigger than you. If I do say anything, I keep it passive and succinct, and simply state: read the handbook. And ride on.
My only real objective by shouting at him. Was so he could hear me above the noise of his engine, and the noise of the mid-day traffic. That aspect was achieved by his responding hand gestures.

As for 'effecting' change in his thinking, correct. That would have been pointless, if that had been my goal.
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Old 09-28-18, 05:13 AM
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You should edit your original post, there's words mixed up or missing which makes it confusing to read.

Anyway, another pointless thing is calling in a week later to the supervisor. No one (at that company) probably gives two cents about it.
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Old 09-28-18, 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
You should edit your original post, there's words mixed up or missing which makes it confusing to read.

Anyway, another pointless thing is calling in a week later to the supervisor. No one (at that company) probably gives two cents about it.
You never know until you try. I've called companies that call/email back and ask for details, others, you never hear from.

The bigger companies (a Coke truck) usually do care since they have reputations at stake and usually departments that deal with and record that kind of stuff. Smaller companies and/or franchises where you deal with the owners not so much.

Having worked in the complaint department, I can tell you that time is of the essence. Therefore, you really need to address these complaints soon after they occur for reference sake.

I personally wait 2 days for my emotions to wane. If its still an issue, I call. If it fades from memory, then it wasn't worth it. After a week, I'd probably let it go. At least it lets you know the quality of the establishment.
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Old 09-28-18, 11:54 AM
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I had an exchange with a local shuttle driver about ten years ago.

Shuttle driver confrontation

After the exchange, I e-mailed the Irving police to complement the responding officers on how they handled it. I also ended up emailing the shuttle company and shared that this confrontation took place. In the explanation, I shared that we both we both used foul language, but I was just a dude on a bike—he was driving their bus, thus acting as a representative of the company. Fast forward almost a year...

...I got on a local city bus and the guy across from me was wearing a shirt with the shuttle bus company's name and logo. I mentioned that I'd had a run-in with one of their drivers and this guy said that they had all heard about it, a company-wide meeting was called and that driver was fired. I was quite stunned and said so. He said the driver was not fired for having the confrontation with me. He was fired because they are only allowed to drive the shuttle buses on airport property and this guy was driving his bus home every night. Our exchange took place about six miles from the airport.
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Old 09-28-18, 11:31 PM
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
You should edit your original post, there's words mixed up or missing which makes it confusing to read.

Anyway, another pointless thing is calling in a week later to the supervisor. No one (at that company) probably gives two cents about it.
Edited. It may seem pointless. But since it is a worldwide company. I want to give the supervisor time to talk to the driver. Before I call back to find out if he did speak with the driver.
Originally Posted by KraneXL View Post
You never know until you try. I've called companies that call/email back and ask for details, others, you never hear from.

The bigger companies (a Coke truck) usually do care since they have reputations at stake and usually departments that deal with and record that kind of stuff. Smaller companies and/or franchises where you deal with the owners not so much.

Having worked in the complaint department, I can tell you that time is of the essence. Therefore, you really need to address these complaints soon after they occur for reference sake.

I personally wait 2 days for my emotions to wane. If its still an issue, I call. If it fades from memory, then it wasn't worth it. After a week, I'd probably let it go. At least it lets you know the quality of the establishment.
Agreed about giving it time, to see if it is still an issue. For me, if it is a transit or 'business' vehicle. I report it the same day. Because, Their bad driving, reflects on the company, with the public at-large. But, If it is a personal vehicle. Even if I record it on camera. The county police have a skewed policy on dangerous drivers'. They had to be an eyewitness to it. They follow that 'excuse' up with. They have more important things to do.
Originally Posted by MMACH 5 View Post
I had an exchange with a local shuttle driver about ten years ago.

Shuttle driver confrontation

After the exchange, I e-mailed the Irving police to complement the responding officers on how they handled it. I also ended up emailing the shuttle company and shared that this confrontation took place. In the explanation, I shared that we both we both used foul language, but I was just a dude on a bike—he was driving their bus, thus acting as a representative of the company. Fast forward almost a year...

...I got on a local city bus and the guy across from me was wearing a shirt with the shuttle bus company's name and logo. I mentioned that I'd had a run-in with one of their drivers and this guy said that they had all heard about it, a company-wide meeting was called and that driver was fired. I was quite stunned and said so. He said the driver was not fired for having the confrontation with me. He was fired because they are only allowed to drive the shuttle buses on airport property and this guy was driving his bus home every night. Our exchange took place about six miles from the airport.
Wow!!!!
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Old 09-29-18, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by KraneXL View Post
You never know until you try. I've called companies that call/email back and ask for details, others, you never hear from.
A guy in a Goodwill truck yelled/cussed at me for no reason. I tweeted to the local Goodwill account about it. They responded, asking for more details. I don't know if anything came of it.

Anyway, good luck trying to take a lane for any distance here. That's a recipe for trouble.
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Old 09-29-18, 11:41 AM
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Why don't you let them pass?
Come on up to the PNW and try taking the lane in front of a logging truck. Sometimes they will purchase the roads they transport on... they own the road so to speak. When you hear the Jakebrake come on it's only a matter of seconds before........ but not to worry... you were dead right to take the lane.
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Old 09-29-18, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Velo Vol View Post
A guy in a Goodwill truck yelled/cussed at me for no reason. I tweeted to the local Goodwill account about it. They responded, asking for more details. I don't know if anything came of it.

Anyway, good luck trying to take a lane for any distance here. That's a recipe for trouble.
Why do you say that? Is it illegal where you live, or because of fear?
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Old 09-29-18, 12:19 PM
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I have ridden in a lot of places where cyclists were ... underappreciated ... and I find that a combination of aggressiveness, defensiveness and an overall policy of Cooperation has kept me alive and riding.

I don't think ti is as hard as everyone seems to make it sound ... but no drama, nobody reads the post, i guess.
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Old 09-29-18, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by KraneXL View Post
Why do you say that? Is it illegal where you live, or because of fear?
Because you'll soon have a line of annoyed if not angry motorists behind you. Outside of select routes, there are few bicycles on the road.
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Old 09-29-18, 10:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Velo Vol View Post
Because you'll soon have a line of annoyed if not angry motorists behind you. Outside of select routes, there are few bicycles on the road.
Ah, just as I suspected. Unless its a major highway (which it would be impossible for a single cyclist to block) that alternate route works both way. In any event, when more than a couple of cars are waiting, I yield at the end of the block to allow traffic to proceed smoothly.
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Old 10-01-18, 02:44 AM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by trailangel View Post
Why don't you let them pass?
Come on up to the PNW and try taking the lane in front of a logging truck. Sometimes they will purchase the roads they transport on... they own the road so to speak. When you hear the Jakebrake come on it's only a matter of seconds before........ but not to worry... you were dead right to take the lane.
While I have never lived in the PNW. I know what a loggng truck looks like. I wouldn't want to be anywhere near one of them. In case their load comes loose.

Living in metropolitan suburbia, it is set of circumstances. Think of the term 'jam packed'. That is what it is around here. The truck driver I referred to in my OP. Is one of the VERY VERY VERY FEW truck drivers who have behaved like that. The road in question. Is a two-lane blacktop. That is too tight to squeeze by. Without straddling the double-yellow line, placing a cyclist in their blind spot at the same time.
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Old 10-01-18, 04:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Chris0516 View Post
The road in question. Is a two-lane blacktop. That is too tight to squeeze by. Without straddling the double-yellow line, placing a cyclist in their blind spot at the same time.
Nothing a cyclist can do but grin and bear it in these cases.
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Old 11-05-18, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by KraneXL View Post
Why do you say that? Is it illegal where you live, or because of fear?
It's against the Law of Gross Tonnage: He who has the most lug nuts, wins.
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Old 11-05-18, 09:28 PM
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You...can't...win.
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Old 11-05-18, 09:53 PM
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Trucking companies tend to respond promptly if you contact them quickly, but you'll want to have the operator's cab number and/or plate number. That way the company can identify who was driving that route.
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Old 11-06-18, 01:09 AM
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Originally Posted by trailangel View Post
Why don't you let them pass?
Come on up to the PNW and try taking the lane in front of a logging truck. Sometimes they will purchase the roads they transport on... they own the road so to speak. When you hear the Jakebrake come on it's only a matter of seconds before........ but not to worry... you were dead right to take the lane.
I live in the PNW and take the lane regularly. If the lane plus shoulder is wide enough for safe sharing, I'm happy to oblige. If not, first come, first served. I am as considerate as I can be, but I'm not going to cede the lane when it's not safe to do so. Every single log hauler I have called to chat with about less than ideal behavior on the part of their drivers has responded positively to me. To date, I've never had a repeat run in with any company (not counting my local school district and their horrible bus drivers, but that's a different situation). It helps that I spent many a year driving rigs, so I know what the score is. I also know that as you move up the trucking food chain management isn't inclined to let some yoyo take out his inferiority complex on the public, since they do rely on some level of public support to keep the money machine churning.

Now if you want to talk about horrible log truck driving, set your time machine for the '80's in NorCal. Those guys were real doozies. I once left a New York medical student and a Korean grad. student at a store on Hwy 1 because we were running late on the last day of a tour and I decided it was best for our other rider and myself to ride on alone and then come back to get them in the van we had at the ride's terminus. While they waited, they were stunned at the conversations between log truck drivers they overheard. Those guys were truly thrilled to nudge cyclists off of cliffs and into ditches. At that point, my companions were pleased we had taken a lot of off-road routes instead of just doing a conventional coast tour. More hills, fewer hillbilly's.
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Old 11-06-18, 01:14 AM
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I've called companies about poor driving on the part of their employees. I'm almost always satisfied with the response. I recently had an electrical company call me back twice to get further details because management wanted to be sure they clobbered the right guy. If one is polite and gives the facts without vitriol or threats, the person at the other end usually wants to make sure there's not a repeat performance. I've also sent emails when I couldn't find the proper phone number and those appear to have worked as well.

This next part is painful to say, because I'm politically a big-government fan. However, the only fleets that appear to be immune to these calls are public fleets (city, municipal power, school districts, county). Maybe I just don't speak their language, but they are highly resistant to improving their driving skillset.
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Old 11-06-18, 02:16 AM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
I've called companies about poor driving on the part of their employees. I'm almost always satisfied with the response. I recently had an electrical company call me back twice to get further details because management wanted to be sure they clobbered the right guy. If one is polite and gives the facts without vitriol or threats, the person at the other end usually wants to make sure there's not a repeat performance. I've also sent emails when I couldn't find the proper phone number and those appear to have worked as well.

This next part is painful to say, because I'm politically a big-government fan. However, the only fleets that appear to be immune to these calls are public fleets (city, municipal power, school districts, county). Maybe I just don't speak their language, but they are highly resistant to improving their driving skillset.
Actually they aren't. Its just not as easily for them to get fired. Whereas private companies can fire you on the spot, government employees typically have a point system before that happens.
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Old 11-06-18, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
...I recently had an electrical company call me back twice to get further details because management wanted to be sure they clobbered the right guy...
In other words: "We want to make sure we spell his name correctly on the trophy and the plaque".
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Old 11-06-18, 10:22 PM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post

This next part is painful to say, because I'm politically a big-government fan. However, the only fleets that appear to be immune to these calls are public fleets (city, municipal power, school districts, county). Maybe I just don't speak their language, but they are highly resistant to improving their driving skillset.
Given the "3 Ft Please" and other pro-cycling messages on most city vehicle here, I would hope the reaction would be better. Never had a problem with one though.

Only once had an issue with a contractor's truck and his response left me feeling the driver would get an appropriate warning.
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