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So I had a cop tell me to get on the sidewalk...

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So I had a cop tell me to get on the sidewalk...

Old 08-03-05, 10:13 AM
  #1  
njbrubaker
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So I had a cop tell me to get on the sidewalk...

A few nights ago a friend and I were riding (with rear lights & helmets) down the main street of our small town at 2 or so in the morning when a cop traveling the other way flashes his lights and stops. We pulled up to his window and he tells us to get on the sidewalk. Politely, I said "Um, isn't that illegal?" to which he responded "No, only downtown where its marked." I must have still looked puzzled because the next thing he said was, "Okay, you wanna get hit by a drunk driver at 2 in the morning, rock on dude!" which he followed up by peeling out and quite obviously exceeding the speed limit, as did the other cruiser that was right behind him. Am I missing some kind of law here or is that guy just a jackass?
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Old 08-03-05, 10:17 AM
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Probably neither. Sounds like he was bored, generally concerned, and wondering what two guys were doing out for a bike ride at 2am.
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Old 08-03-05, 10:20 AM
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well, dont be too harsh on him, he belived it was dangerous for you to be on the road, at night due to drunk drivers so as it was legal to go on the sidewalk at the point like it is at some places in the uk, he decided it will be safer for you to be there, not understanding we dont like going there because it slows us down!
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Old 08-03-05, 10:29 AM
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probably checking if you guys were drunk. Riding a bike at 2 am is kind of odd.

Were you in a college town?
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Old 08-03-05, 10:37 AM
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Two AM is a great time to ride, especially during the week. Cooler temps, no glaring sun, and very few drivers.

My favorite time to ride in the college town I used to live in was around dawn on Sunday mornings. I would ride for at least an hour around the city and rarely seen more than 5 or 6 cars.

Surprisingly, a lot of law enforcement officers don't know a whole lot about the law, especially if they are laws that don't get enforced a lot. They know about drunk driving laws, assault laws, etc. because they are regularly encountered. The njbrubaker's incident will probably be one of the few times in a year that that officer talks to somebody about their bike riding.
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Old 08-03-05, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Alloy Addict
Two AM is a great time to ride, especially during the week. Cooler temps, no glaring sun, and very few drivers.

My favorite time to ride in the college town I used to live in was around dawn on Sunday mornings. I would ride for at least an hour around the city and rarely seen more than 5 or 6 cars.

Surprisingly, a lot of law enforcement officers don't know a whole lot about the law, especially if they are laws that don't get enforced a lot. They know about drunk driving laws, assault laws, etc. because they are regularly encountered. The njbrubaker's incident will probably be one of the few times in a year that that officer talks to somebody about their bike riding.

Well 2 AM specifically is NOT a good time, as that is when the bars let out... the traffic at that hour is almost always somewhat boozed up. I used to work at a Jack in the Box in high school, and believe me the crowd that would show up at that exact hour was not all clear in the head.

However regarding riding at night and early morning... you are sooo right... it is cool (temp and attitude wise) I love how little traffic there is, and how you can hear and see (headlights) cars from a long way off. You as a rider just ghost around quietly. It really is a thrill... especially on a full moon night. I'll also admit (at risk of being flamed) that I would do it without headlights as the moonlight and shadows were just eerie and cool to cruise about in.
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Old 08-03-05, 12:26 PM
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From about 2-3 am is the only time that I ride on sidewalks, esp. when I am riding near NCSU. The # of vehicles that I see swerving and driving recklessly on the weekend nights is scary.
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Old 08-03-05, 07:50 PM
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Perhaps I was a little quick to judge the cop. It wasn't so much the fact that he stopped me so much as his attitude. Maybe he just mistook the expression on my face, it's happened before. In fact, I do live in a college town, but it's kind of unique in that it's a dry town with an uber-conservative college that strongly discourages drinking. The closest bar is about 5 miles outside town. The whole town closes down around 10 and by 12 there are almost no cars on the road. By 2 I'm usually suprised to see 2 of them on an hour long ride.
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Old 08-03-05, 09:59 PM
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One of my favourite bike experiences was riding up Moose Mountain fire lookout at midnight in October, stoned on mushrooms. It is a gravel road for the first half then a trail, the old road that they used to build the fire lookout.

We didn't go all the way to the top, but we were up above the trees and could see the lights of the city and the little towns and the flares at the gas plants.

Coming down the gravel road, under the full moon, the smoothest parts of the road reflected the moonlight the best, so it was easy to go waay too fast. I remember my hands being really cold from the wind. Night riding can be so much fun
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Old 08-04-05, 02:12 AM
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i had a freind take some shrooms then he freaked out on them had to be taken to the hospital got a cool cathader and had his stomach pumped.. sounds like u had more fun...
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Old 08-04-05, 02:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Primevci
u
"U" is not a word. Is it too much for you to spell a simple three letter word correctly?


Hey genec around here 2 am is a fine time to ride. In Pinellas County the bars stop serving at midnight and the bars across the bridge (in Tampa) shut down at 3
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Old 08-04-05, 04:08 AM
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I'm not sure what's worse, the aolese or the admonishment. Oh yah I am, the latter, especially when it includes that big dumb pic. Yah, it's annoying, but it ain't goin' to change. It's a declining spiral. Here in the norhern hemisphere it goes counterclockwise. Come on now. Why don't you jump on spelling and grammer while you're at it. Give it up bud, it's an effort in futility.

OT - It's the pig's job to hassle you. I would have expected it the moment you saw him. Your safety he was thinking of, pishaw.
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Old 08-04-05, 04:16 AM
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Hmm, text speak goes back to the days of the telegraph, there's a book out called "The Victorian Internet" about this. Smileys go back to the days of the green-keys Teletype.

Anyway, my impression is the cop's heart was in the right place and he was truly concerned for your safety. I did a bunch of reading on the risks of bike riding a while back and one thing that stuck with me was that there's a big spike in biker deaths about 2-3 AM, combination of DUI drivers and DUI riders getting out of the bars.
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Old 08-04-05, 05:32 AM
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Originally Posted by lilHinault
Anyway, my impression is the cop's heart was in the right place and he was truly concerned for your safety. I did a bunch of reading on the risks of bike riding a while back and one thing that stuck with me was that there's a big spike in biker deaths about 2-3 AM, combination of DUI drivers and DUI riders getting out of the bars.
However the cops time and energy would be much better spent stopping the DUI drivers and getting them off the road then telling the cyclist that the DUI driver is going to hit to get off the road. Besides while riding on the sidewalk, the DUI driver is more unlikely not to notice the cyclist and probably plough into the cyclist when turning at an intersection.
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Old 08-04-05, 08:21 AM
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He was lookin' out for you if he was warning you about drunks. I get told that all the time, mainly cuase our cops suck.. you could murder the Mayor and not get arrested pretty much.
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Old 08-04-05, 11:51 AM
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I got pulled over once in college for riding across campus without any lights. I rarely rode at night those days and had been working on an assignment with a pal until 3AM so I had little choice. The (campus) cop gave me the lecture on state law for lights on bikes being for my own good. He was right, of course. When I started bike commuting to work after that I got some lights.

Your cop sounds less well-meaning.
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Old 08-04-05, 02:26 PM
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It never surprises me the things cops will hassle you for. I had a motorcycle cop give me a ticket for riding my BMX on empty sidewalk of a notoriously dangerous street.. I had to be going at about 5 mph (dirtjumpers aren't built for speed). Meanwhile he's writing me up two kids go by on the opposite sidewalk weaving in and out of pedestriants on MTBs.

The cop look at em going by.
I look at the cop.
He finishes my ticket tells me to stay off the sidewalk (still empty) and drives away.

I start looking around for Ashton kutcher because I swore I was being Punk'd.
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Old 08-04-05, 05:45 PM
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If the cop is so worried about drunks, why doesn't he pull them over instead of cyclists? Is this some kind of creative law enforcement?

About AOLese--it is banned on this forum. See the guidelines if you don't believe me.
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Old 08-04-05, 06:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Primevci
i had a freind take some shrooms then he freaked out on them had to be taken to the hospital got a cool cathader and had his stomach pumped.. sounds like u had more fun...

Is English your second language?
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Old 08-04-05, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by njbrubaker
... he tells us to get on the sidewalk. Politely, I said "Um, isn't that illegal?" to which he responded "No, only downtown where its marked."
I think I would have asked him why I couldn't ride on the road instead of your "Isn't that illegal?" (referring to sidewalk riding). His answer for the most part would have still been the subject of the drunks but at least he might have understood your implication that it was legal to operate a bicycle on the road.

He probably had a list of "people" to look out for on his beat and was just getting close enough to you get a good visual description.

Well he didn't run over you, tazer you, beat you with a stick, or arrest you and a drunk didn't hit you later so I'd say everything turned out OK.

d.tipton
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Old 08-04-05, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by scarry
Is English your second language?
no just grew up with Dyslexia so my writing skill didnt really develope... still have Dyslexia always will have Dyslexia... i can do numbers thow so maybe thats why i work construction...
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Old 08-04-05, 08:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Raiyn
"U" is not a word. Is it too much for you to spell a simple three letter word correctly?


Hey genec around here 2 am is a fine time to ride. In Pinellas County the bars stop serving at midnight and the bars across the bridge (in Tampa) shut down at 3
yea ill start spelling it out you for you....
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Old 08-04-05, 09:52 PM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by Primevci
yea ill start spelling it out you for you....
Don't do it for me. Do it because it's what you're supposed to do
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Old 08-04-05, 10:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Raiyn
"U" is not a word. Is it too much for you to spell a simple three letter word correctly?


Hey genec around here 2 am is a fine time to ride. In Pinellas County the bars stop serving at midnight and the bars across the bridge (in Tampa) shut down at 3
Really, shouldn't you have used "a.m." instead of am, and.. hello.. no period?
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Old 08-04-05, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by njbrubaker
. . . rock on dude!" which he followed up by peeling out and quite obviously exceeding the speed limit, as did the other cruiser that was right behind him. Am I missing some kind of law here or is that guy just a jackass?
Jackass. Peeling out is the unmistakable call of the North American jackass.
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