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Sidewalk Drivers

Old 08-25-09, 08:05 AM
  #1  
tieka
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Sidewalk Drivers

Before anyone asks me, no I don't take the sidewalk very often.

In my neighborhood they are building a Chick-fil-a and I love going by it (on the sidewalk) to take pictures, talk with the construction guys, just plain be happy that food, other than Barbecue is going in.

A couple days ago I had to take my bike into the ditch to move out of the way of a vehicle that was driving on the sidewalk. He was doing lawn maintenance, but from speaking with a cop it is illegal in all states for a motor vehicle to drive on a sidewalk.

After talking with a cop, he said next time, call us and we will do something. I asked him why he couldn't do anything now and said "I will send someone to talk with him".

What would you do? Complain to the police? Let it go? I wasn't hurt, but if it is illegal shouldn't the police do more?

Last edited by tieka; 08-25-09 at 08:11 AM.
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Old 08-25-09, 08:33 AM
  #2  
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I've driven on the sidewalk at times, when I was loading large equipment from a building, etc. The sidewalks sometimes are on private property, and if the property owner authorizes someone like lawn service to drive on them, I doubt it's actually illegal. If I own the sidewalk and I decide someone can drive on it, they can.

You're probably talking about public sidewalks though.

Honestly, if I went whining to the cops every time something unusual was in the way of either my bike or my car, I wouldn't get much else done. Besides, they might bring up the fact that it's illegal for ME to be RIDING on the sidewalk.
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Old 08-25-09, 08:36 AM
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Well, if you want to get hyper-technical about it, one can argue that the vehicle wasn't really being "driven" since it was doing lawn maintainence. I remember how one can have a hyper-technical (and pointless) debate over whether someone who's drunk who's *walking* a bicycle is guilty of DUI or not. (IIRC the person technically would be, but I'm not sure since it turns on the technical definition of "drive.") But yes, IMHO it's legalism in the worst way to split legal hairs to stir up issues when there aren't any, assuming that you were able to work around the guy w/o too much trouble.
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Old 08-25-09, 08:45 AM
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The vehicle was being driven at the time. I assumed it was doing lawn maintenance because of the business logo on the side of the vehicle.

How do you know what an owned sidewalk is and a public sidewalk? I did give the officer a google map of the sidewalk and area that it happened in.

I think I am more angry about the fact that people don't give a crap around here. If I were to go one city over I could have full cooperation of the police no matter what I need.
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Old 08-25-09, 09:40 AM
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Actually, at least here in Arkansas there isn't a law that says you can (or can't) drive on a sidewalk. Sidewalks are left to local jurisdiction and city or community ordinances.
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Old 08-25-09, 09:52 AM
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your on to a non issue here
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Old 08-25-09, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by tieka View Post
What would you do? Complain to the police? Let it go? I wasn't hurt, but if it is illegal shouldn't the police do more?
No, it's hearsay, and hearsay is generally bull****.

I hear tieka rides head first into traffic, arrest him. What you wont? I'm gonna complain!

Call next time, have them catch them, done and done, no drama.
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Old 08-25-09, 04:52 PM
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Is a lawn maintenance vehicle street-legal -- you know, lights, turn signals, etc? If not, he'd HAVE to be on the sidewalk, as it'd be illegal for him to be on the street!
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Old 08-25-09, 06:05 PM
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Originally Posted by tieka View Post
The vehicle was being driven at the time. I assumed it was doing lawn maintenance because of the business logo on the side of the vehicle.

How do you know what an owned sidewalk is and a public sidewalk? I did give the officer a google map of the sidewalk and area that it happened in.

I think I am more angry about the fact that people don't give a crap around here. If I were to go one city over I could have full cooperation of the police no matter what I need.
Let the guy make a living and let the cops look for criminals. If this is a problem in your life, and it sounds like it is, then your life is pretty darn good. Enjoy it.
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Old 08-29-09, 03:40 PM
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Here we have miles of pedestrian and bike paths that are mostly maintained (at least to my knowledge ) by the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MinnDOT).

We get a lot of MinnDOT people on these paths running mowers along the sides of the paths, pick up trucks carrying workers that are weed clearing/picking up trash, big bucket trucks that are sawing off tree limbs, and even some MinDOT vehicles with people that as far as I can see aren't doing anything but obstructing the paths while they smoke cigarettes and talk on their cell phones.

But, I like to think that for the most part ( well, maybe at least half the time ) they are maintaining the paths that my tax dollars pay for and I should at least be tolerant of them.

The same thing happens on the streets where I drive my car.
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