Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Advocacy & Safety Cyclists should expect and demand safe accommodation on every public road, just as do all other users. Discuss your bicycle advocacy and safety concerns here.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 02-12-08, 01:47 PM   #1
ghettocruiser
Former Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: dropmachine.com
Bikes:
Posts: 4,062
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Clipped by Another Overtaker...

Last night, 7 pm, light snow on the road but good visibility, riding about 15mph on a 30mph limit 4-lane road in heavy traffic which is going below the speed limit. 10-ft curb lane has lost at least a couple of feet to the snowbank, so running 3 feet away from the snowbank has me close to the effective centre of the right lane.

A Honda civic straddles the line, and overtaking at about 5mph faster than me, hits my bars with the rear view mirror. The mirrors on both the Civic and my handlebars fold in, and the bike veers right; and I lean heavily on the rear door to right myself and stay up. Car keeps going, until honking and gestures from other motorists alert her that something was wrong. Pulls into a plaza up the way and we talk it over.

She didn't claim that she couldn't see me (I was running a PBSF in steady mode and and BRT-7 on flash and the car had two functional headlights to light up the reflective bands.) She claimed to have misjudged the passing distance, and though the crunch noise was her hitting a snow bank, rather than my mirror.

Thought: keep the bolts on a bar-mounted mirror a bit loose, if you use one.

So the question becomes, should I just ride in the motorcycle blocking position on the left side of these narrow lanes? As I've mentioned before, this has gotten me passed on the right a few times by aggressive types using bus turn-outs and other temporary widenings, but I guess I am ready now to give it another try.
ghettocruiser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-08, 02:37 PM   #2
maddyfish
Senior Member
 
maddyfish's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Ky. and FL.
Bikes: KHS steel SS
Posts: 3,944
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Take up space, be seen, and if they come up right behind you, you likely be seen.
When I ride in the snow I am lit up like a Xmas tree. Flashers, flashlights taped here and there, and even a big boat bow light clamped on the back.
maddyfish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-08, 03:38 PM   #3
yes
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 675
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
She claimed to have misjudged the passing distance, and though the crunch noise was her hitting a snow bank, rather than my mirror.
If she was trying to pass on your left and thought that she ran into the snow bank, I wonder where she thought that you were at that time. Makes no sense.
yes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-08, 04:36 PM   #4
joejack951
Senior Member
 
joejack951's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Wilmington, DE
Bikes: 2016 Hong Fu FM-079-F, 1984 Trek 660, 2003 Specialized Hardrock, 2004 LOOK KG386i (RIP), 2005 Iron Horse Warrior Expert, 2009 Pedal Force CX1, 2016 Islabikes Beinn 20 (son's)
Posts: 11,554
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 926 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
So the question becomes, should I just ride in the motorcycle blocking position on the left side of these narrow lanes? As I've mentioned before, this has gotten me passed on the right a few times by aggressive types using bus turn-outs and other temporary widenings, but I guess I am ready now to give it another try.
I've been passed quite a few times on the right because I was using a leftish position in a lane for some reason. A favorite around here is to use right turn only lanes to pass any traffic (motorists, cyclists, trucks, etc.) when the mood strikes. I've gotten over letting it bother me. I do a quick shoulder check to verify passing clearance on my right side though (almost makes me want to add a right side mirror).

I do have to ask though, if you were using a mirror, were you not able to judge how closely she was passing (sounds like you had some space to move right if you had noticed in time)) or was your attention focussed on something else (and I can understand why it might be with heavy traffic and snowbanks all around)?

I just got home from ice skating, or should I say watching motorists ice skate thanks to the freezing rain. Luckily I had mounted my studded tires this morning. I spent a lot of time monitoring to the rear especially after watching a guy slide off the road around a corner after passing me, then a few people slide through the stop sign at the bottom of a hill, then a guy slam into a telephone pole coming down a hill, and finally a guy flip his car onto it's roof trying to avoid the guy who hit the telephone pole. This was all in the first mile by the way. What a mess.
joejack951 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-08, 04:46 PM   #5
WalterMitty
Old Enough to Know Better
 
WalterMitty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: OK
Bikes:
Posts: 415
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yikes. Close call.

I don't think there is a preemptive strategy if her story is that she misjudged the distance and then didn't think the crunch was you. I think this is called DWA (driving while average). Everything on the roadway gets clipped, bumped and scraped. Look at the walls at the bank drive-through, in the parking garages, at the toll booths, at the menus at the drive in. Every post, curb, pole, meter, and sign within 1ft+ of the roadway has been hit. And that's the stationary stuff; add the fact that you're moving into the equation and your odds may not improve.

In 20+ years of motorcycling I have been bumped and pushed more than once by cars, so I don't think your lane position was at fault or will necessarily be a remedy. Maybe she would have been patient enough to wait, or pass with more clearance, or maybe not.

Would you have been OK with the situation if she hadn't touched you but passed close enough for you to reach over and touch her mirror? Just curious, it's really not an important issue, but I use a helmet mirror and if I see someone moving in on me like that I start signaling or taking other measures to communicate my opinions...and get off that line.

I just don't trust people enough to let them get that close to me without fussing with them and signaling for them to stay back.
WalterMitty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-08, 04:56 PM   #6
ghettocruiser
Former Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: dropmachine.com
Bikes:
Posts: 4,062
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I had a bit of space to the right, and I think could have moved there to turn the clip into a close pass. Despite the headlight glare in the grimy mirror, I did see her behind me, and I probably could have seen the clip coming.... if I had been watching her constantly.

However she'd been pacing me for more about ten seconds, and it was quite clear that she saw me, so I was watching the car ahead of me for a second. In this interval she decided to go for it, and by the time I looked again I was looking at two mirrors at the end of the handlebar instead of one.

I knew there was a gap if the left hand lane, so a full lane change (like everybody else does) is what I was expecting, rather than taking up both lanes and still managing to hit me.

Let's see how tonight's ride home goes. Way more snow this time.
ghettocruiser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-08, 05:41 PM   #7
joejack951
Senior Member
 
joejack951's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Wilmington, DE
Bikes: 2016 Hong Fu FM-079-F, 1984 Trek 660, 2003 Specialized Hardrock, 2004 LOOK KG386i (RIP), 2005 Iron Horse Warrior Expert, 2009 Pedal Force CX1, 2016 Islabikes Beinn 20 (son's)
Posts: 11,554
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 926 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghettocruiser View Post
I had a bit of space to the right, and I think could have moved there to turn the clip into a close pass. Despite the headlight glare in the grimy mirror, I did see her behind me, and I probably could have seen the clip coming.... if I had been watching her constantly.

However she'd been pacing me for more about ten seconds, and it was quite clear that she saw me, so I was watching the car ahead of me for a second. In this interval she decided to go for it, and by the time I looked again I was looking at two mirrors at the end of the handlebar instead of one.

I knew there was a gap if the left hand lane, so a full lane change (like everybody else does) is what I was expecting, rather than taking up both lanes and still managing to hit me.

Let's see how tonight's ride home goes. Way more snow this time.
Ah, I can see how easily your attention could have slipped from her if she had been sitting behind you for a bit. The grimy mirror and headlight glare certainly didn't help either I'm sure (BTDT too). I had to fight to keep the ice from building up on my glasses today. They were frozen to my wool hat by the time I got home

One thing I've used to my advantage to not be surprised by a passer is to actively encourage them to pass when they can (even if it's painfully obvious that they can and should be). This allows me to direct less attention to the rear by getting them out of there as soon as possible. I most often do this on single lane each direction roads especially when passing oppurtunities are few. I've been burnt a few times by waiting for someone to pass when I thought they would, taking my attention off them when I felt there was no chance they'd pass, then experiencing some idiot forcing a pass with oncoming traffic. By waving them on when I want them to pass and giving a slow signal when I don't want them to, I've been able to do a much better job of keeping track of passers (regardless of if they actually obey my signals). You certainly stumbled across an idiot though.
joejack951 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:18 AM.


We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    get answers from real people!
Click to start entering your question.
I HAVE A QUESTION