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Assertiveness Training?

Old 11-30-22, 10:33 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
Those posted MPH are limits which means go no faster than that. The only place there are minimum speeds posted are on Interstates where bicycles aren't allowed anyway.

Yes, but in most FRAP states, if you aren't cycling near the speed limit, you are probably required to ride as far right as practicable (whatever that means).
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Old 11-30-22, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Yes, but in most FRAP states, if you aren't cycling near the speed limit, you are probably required to ride as far right as practicable (whatever that means).
NJ law states that bicyclists must ride as far to the right as is practicable. The implication is that "is practicable" means "can safely be done" in this case. On most secondary and tertiary roads without a defined shoulder, riding in the right car tire track is generally considered acceptable.
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Old 11-30-22, 10:43 AM
  #28  
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Ok, these are loaded questions, so are more rhetorical than honestly seeking information. That said, I am strongly in favor of the former set of behaviors.
I hear a lot of talk about riders being more aggressive toward motorists, but I don't actually see them "walking the walk". All of the riders I see and ride with are very sensible and courteous.
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Old 11-30-22, 11:03 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
NJ law states that bicyclists must ride as far to the right as is practicable. The implication is that "is practicable" means "can safely be done" in this case. On most secondary and tertiary roads without a defined shoulder, riding in the right car tire track is generally considered acceptable.

I believe the word "practicable" was chosen precisely because it gives the cyclist some discretion, which "possible" does not. Generally, I vary my position depending on the road's actual conditions--cracked surface at margins, useable pavement to the right of a fog line, frequency of right turn intersections, presence of blind driveway exits, cars merging, etc. Other than right of center, I really have no default position. At a right turn intersection, I will occupy the lane, however, going back to the right after the intersection.

I'm in NH (FRAP state) and do a lot of riding in MA (only non-FRAP state). As far as I can tell, there really isn't apparent difference in where on the road people actually ride between the two states.
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Old 11-30-22, 11:45 AM
  #30  
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I ride with different ride groups and by far, the urban cyclists I ride with have the best spatial and situational awareness. Even though we ride fast, the flow is more fluid and the trust in drafting is much higher. Also many of them are on fixed. The experienced riders have a very good sense of flow when it comes to traffic. Plus we tend to brush off irate motorists and respectful to the courteous motorists. It's all about staying in that zone while maintaining consistency and speed.
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Old 11-30-22, 12:42 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by 1989Pre View Post
Ok, these are loaded questions, so are more rhetorical than honestly seeking information. That said, I am strongly in favor of the former set of behaviors.
I hear a lot of talk about riders being more aggressive toward motorists, but I don't actually see them "walking the walk". All of the riders I see and ride with are very sensible and courteous.
Do not confuse assertive behavior with aggressive behavior. Assertive behavior is correct behavior. Aggressive behavior is not.
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Old 11-30-22, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
I believe the word "practicable" was chosen precisely because it gives the cyclist some discretion, which "possible" does not. Generally, I vary my position depending on the road's actual conditions--cracked surface at margins, useable pavement to the right of a fog line, frequency of right turn intersections, presence of blind driveway exits, cars merging, etc. Other than right of center, I really have no default position. At a right turn intersection, I will occupy the lane, however, going back to the right after the intersection.
And this is the correct way to ride. Slithering to the right of stopped cars is not. Also, taking the lane where there are parallel parked cars on the street is the correct way to ride, yet many riders on group rides still hug the parked cars and are afraid to take the lane.

Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
I'm in NH (FRAP state) and do a lot of riding in MA (only non-FRAP state). As far as I can tell, there really isn't apparent difference in where on the road people actually ride between the two states.
Not sure I quite understand this FRAP state thing. I know what it stands for, but what does that actually mean?
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Old 11-30-22, 01:31 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
Not sure I quite understand this FRAP state thing. I know what it stands for, but what does that actually mean?
Sorry if I wasn't clear--NH requires "far right as practicable" by law, MA does not. Regardless of the lack of such law in MA, I find that cyclists there ride about as far to the right as do NH riders.
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Old 11-30-22, 02:10 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by masi61 View Post
Claim your lane as you approach 4 way stops and traffic lights. It may block the motorist behind you but that is the point. It increases safety because you make your intentions clear. A motorist may act inconvenienced but they rarely go into harassment mode because they respect that what you have just done is legal and the right thing to do. This does require assertiveness. I tell my weekend warrior riding buddies when I do this that I am practicing my commuter skills and that as a road cyclist I am allowed to do these things.
While I agree in theory... the gaping hole in your logic is this: "because they respect that what you have just done is legal and the right thing to do."

There are tons of drivers out there that firmly believe bicycles do not belong on the road, and may not have a clue as to the legal rights of cyclists.

I used to post the laws pertaining to cyclists on the outside of my cube at work, and often would have conversations with co-workers who would exclaim: "I had no idea" with regard to those bike laws. Far far too many drivers really do not know traffic law... other than stop on red and go on green. They learn just enough to pass the test, forget the rest and then go on and accumulate bad habits as soon as they can drive.

In California, for instance, questions regarding the legality of bikes on the road on the written driving test didn't even show up until about 25 years ago. That means anyone with a CA DL earned before then may not have a clue about "the legal and the right thing to do."

Anyone licensed after that time my have missed those couple of questions and simply not care. DL ed classes tend to emphasize "do not mess with the flow of traffic..." and probably spend scant minutes on bike law.

Even here on BF we have folks that have no idea what FRAP means to a cyclist.
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Old 11-30-22, 02:43 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
Do not confuse assertive behavior with aggressive behavior. Assertive behavior is correct behavior. Aggressive behavior is not.
There is no need to be "assertive" while riding. A little courtesy goes a long way. Confrontational cyclists endanger all of the rest of us when motorists over-generalize.
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Old 11-30-22, 03:10 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Sorry if I wasn't clear--NH requires "far right as practicable" by law, MA does not. Regardless of the lack of such law in MA, I find that cyclists there ride about as far to the right as do NH riders.
DERP! I'm slow when it comes to acronyms, LOL! I was thinking of the other FRAP in the legal sense. How did I not see that one?

I now live in MA that doesn't have FRAP. I used to live in NJ that does have FRAP. Guess which state I see more riders riding down the middle of the lane whether it's warranted or not?
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Old 11-30-22, 07:22 PM
  #37  
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FRAP in Florida allows one to take the center of the lane on roads of substandard lane width. That is lanes in which a car can't safely pass without crossing the center line. That covers 90% of the roads I'm riding.
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Old 11-30-22, 08:33 PM
  #38  
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Generally, anything 5 under the posted limit in normal conditions are grounds for being pulled over.
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Old 11-30-22, 11:59 PM
  #39  
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Concerning assertiveness, that is good if it is done to ensure your safety. But not in the sense of trying to win a pissing contest. Cyclists have rights on the road, but simply asserting your rights becasue you have the right is not necessarily the safest thing to do. It's little consolation laying in a hospital bed to know you had the right of way.

But I do certainly take the lane where appropriate, and other actions, to make it clear what I'm doing and to make it clear to a car behind me to NOT expect to pass me in this lane, unless they are going to change lanes. When safe, I do my best to make it easy for cars to navigate around me.

I'm sure I have drivers behind me on every ride that are likely thinking I should get out of their way. But I've had maybe 3 drivers in the last 4 years or so ever express their displeasure with me by honking or yelling. So, basically no worse than when I'm driving my car.

Put another way, I think the less I ride like an A-hole, the less drivers drive like A-holes.
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Old 12-01-22, 01:23 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Troul View Post
Generally, anything 5 under the posted limit in normal conditions are grounds for being pulled over.
Help me out here.

Is this a reference to DWI? If it is, then it is the case that unusually slow or erratic motor vehicle operation will attract attention due to possible impaired driving. Clearly a pedal cyclist will not be pulled over for operating under the posted speed limit.

If not a DWI reference then please clarify as your statement is completely at odds with my experience in all the jurisdictions Iíve lived in.
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Old 12-01-22, 02:48 AM
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Originally Posted by flangehead View Post
Help me out here.

Is this a reference to DWI? If it is, then it is the case that unusually slow or erratic motor vehicle operation will attract attention due to possible impaired driving. Clearly a pedal cyclist will not be pulled over for operating under the posted speed limit.

If not a DWI reference then please clarify as your statement is completely at odds with my experience in all the jurisdictions Iíve lived in.
in my first quote you'll find my reference.
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Old 12-02-22, 09:23 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by Mtracer View Post
Concerning assertiveness, that is good if it is done to ensure your safety. But not in the sense of trying to win a pissing contest. Cyclists have rights on the road, but simply asserting your rights becasue you have the right is not necessarily the safest thing to do. It's little consolation laying in a hospital bed to know you had the right of way.

But I do certainly take the lane where appropriate, and other actions, to make it clear what I'm doing and to make it clear to a car behind me to NOT expect to pass me in this lane, unless they are going to change lanes. When safe, I do my best to make it easy for cars to navigate around me.

I'm sure I have drivers behind me on every ride that are likely thinking I should get out of their way. But I've had maybe 3 drivers in the last 4 years or so ever express their displeasure with me by honking or yelling. So, basically no worse than when I'm driving my car.

Put another way, I think the less I ride like an A-hole, the less drivers drive like A-holes.
You might be inclined to think that, and even believe your own actions influence other road users... And in some cases this is true. But for a real eye opener, find a busy intersection that you can quietly observe for a while. I used to take lunch at this cafe with outside seating and just watch drivers interact with one another and pedestrians. There are plenty of A-hole drivers out there.

I used to take long walks along a busy 4 lane boulevard, on the sidewalk. The number of folks doing anything but driving was amazing. I saw loads of cell phone use, and other distractions such as drivers reading books.

Really, just observe; it really is amazing how few collisions occur.
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Old 12-02-22, 10:07 AM
  #43  
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Hardly a person who shrinks away from conflict but I use as much care as possible to avoid a confrontation with a motorist. I knew plenty of cyclists mowed down from behind and even on rider who assertively took the lane at a light, but was run over and killed nonetheless.

My riding is generally in the country or sometimes in suburban areas although I used to commute years ago in urban areas.

I focus on prevently the left cross, right hook, being doored, and being hit from behind.

The first three are pretty easy to avoid.

To reduce the probability of being hit from behind, I use two blinkies with one being a Varia radar unit. I also use a mirror. I try to observe each car from the rear to see that they are moving over. I also select routes carefully to try for wide and/or low traffic. I plan routes mostly clockwise to maximize right hand turns over left hand turns. I will take the lane when safety dictates. For instance on a fast bumpy descent with a speed limit of 35 mph and I am doing the limit or higher, I need the lane and I do not release it back to motorist behind me until I am damned ready.

When a motorist runs me off the road, throws a beer bottle at me, or does something illegal like that, they may get my aggression and I don't care what fred cyclist thinks.
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Old 12-02-22, 10:16 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
Hardly a person who shrinks away from conflict but I use as much care as possible to avoid a confrontation with a motorist. I knew plenty of cyclists mowed down from behind and even on rider who assertively took the lane at a light, but was run over and killed nonetheless.

My riding is generally in the country or sometimes in suburban areas although I used to commute years ago in urban areas.

I focus on prevently the left cross, right hook, being doored, and being hit from behind.
The first three are each much more common than the fourth. Being hit from behind accounts for less than 5% off all car vs. bike accidents. Granted if someone hits you from behind, it is more likely deliberate than the previous three and probably more lethal as a result.

Most of my close calls have been left crosses, right hooks or being passed within a gnat's whisker.
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Old 12-02-22, 11:03 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
The first three are each much more common than the fourth. Being hit from behind accounts for less than 5% off all car vs. bike accidents. Granted if someone hits you from behind, it is more likely deliberate than the previous three and probably more lethal as a result.

Most of my close calls have been left crosses, right hooks or being passed within a gnat's whisker.
Isn't that the same as being hit from behind?

Risk is a mathematical combination of the likelihood of an event occurring and it's severity. Hit from behind is very severe and worth avoiding.

I have not had a left hook in ages nor have I had a right cross in ages.

I did have a driver run a stop sign at 11 pm in the dark in the rain, almost taking me out. My corrective action on that one? Buy a bike with disc brakes and consider not using an STVzO headlamp anymore but the jury is out on the lamp although I am sure a non-stvzo lamp would have caught more attention to the driver.
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Old 12-02-22, 11:15 AM
  #46  
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Assertiveness does not mean to enter into a violent encounter when you are bullied. Martial arts and self defence training says the first rule is to avoid the fight and run away if you can.

No Right has been earned in human history by asking nicely, from the non-smoking movement to voting rights. Everything is a long process that involves politicians and cooperation with law enforcement.

Having stated that, if I have identified the best route to take to get to my destination, I will take that route. No other road user has the authority to tell me where else to go. If that other road user has a problem with that, he can always call the police to resolve the issue instead of taking it into his own hands.
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Old 12-02-22, 11:41 AM
  #47  
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Assertive isn't synonymous with aggressive.
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Old 12-02-22, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
Isn't that the same as being hit from behind?
How is that? That's like saying a near miss/close call is the same as a direct hit.
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Old 12-02-22, 03:03 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Even here on BF we have folks that have no idea what FRAP means to a cyclist.

I believe the word "practicable" by its very nature means different things to different cyclists.
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Old 12-02-22, 03:17 PM
  #50  
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My basic theory is to ride in a manner as visible as possible without being obstructive just for the sake of being obstructive. If someone wants to hit me, I think they can do it wherever I am on the road, so I'm really only in it to prevent being hit by people who have me in their blind spot.
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