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The crosswalk on my commute

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The crosswalk on my commute

Old 01-31-11, 11:02 AM
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Speedwagon98
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The crosswalk on my commute

When I go to school, I do a 2 mile commute to the light rail station. At the very last light, I go from the bike lane in the road, into the crosswalk to hop up on the sidewalk, as this is the easiest place to get up on the sidewalk to get to the station. Frequently, people will pull up to this light, and not stop behind the crosswalk like they are supposed to, but stop in the crosswalk, blocking my path to the sidewalk.

I'm basically just typing this to say I find it very annoying, as I have had to frequently hit the brakes hard at 25mph to compensate for them(it is a long downhill section).

If you were me, would you let it be? Or make good use of the airzound mounted on the bicycle?

Red is my path, blue is the cars that block me.

Last edited by Speedwagon98; 01-31-11 at 11:05 AM.
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Old 01-31-11, 11:20 AM
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There are a couple of crosswalks on my route where the trail intersects a street. Cars are supposed to stop behind it and many do but plenty don't.

Sounds like you may have a similar situation and all I can say is that you need to be prepared to stop if someone rolls into the crosswalk and 25 mph is probably too fast for that part of your commute

Last edited by tjspiel; 01-31-11 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 01-31-11, 11:44 AM
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Cars pulling into the crosswalk is a pretty common thing - doesnt make it right, but its a fairly predictable hazard. On the other hand, bikes blowing through a crosswalk at 25mph are also a hazard. Most cars would not anticipate a bike changing from on-road bike lane to pedestrian sidewalk through an intersection. You also have to at least realize the potential for there to be pedestrians on the sidewalk and entering the crosswalk. It may be rare where you ride, but the sidewalk is a pedestrian zone. I would just let it go and plan on taking it slow through there.
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Old 01-31-11, 11:44 AM
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You just have to slow down in that section. Be lucky that you know the particulars about that section because someone else might not. If you think this is a hazard. Write a letter to your local government letting them know so. Is there any markings that cars need to stop before a certain indicator? Maybe you can get your state to draw one. Might or might not work, but it's a shot. And at least if someone should get injured from that intersection and there's a record that someone complained about that particular intersection, that injured person has better grounds to file a suit.

That said, you shouldn't be going 25mph in a crosswalk to begin with. Some cities even don't allow you to cycle though them.
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Old 01-31-11, 11:44 AM
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Why do you even have to ask "Or make good use of the airzound mounted on the bicycle?" And yeah, from your description I also gathered that you should be riding slower at that point since you know it's a bad intersection. Think: defensive cycling!

Adam
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Old 01-31-11, 12:02 PM
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As an occasional driver who is guilty of not stopping behind crosswalks especially when I'm making a turn I will have to say you need to be more predictable as a rider. Drivers who are making a right turn will usually go over the crosswalk to better see cross traffic. I will stop behind the line if I see pedestrians crossing but if I see a bicycle on the road I will expect that rider to stay on the road.

Transitioning from street to crosswalk is not something I consider right of way for cyclists because its not something drivers will normally expect you to do. If this was me riding I will stop on the side of the street and lift the bike onto the sidewalk. It may take longer but its definitely safer. The worst thing that can happen is if you get hit by a car with a driver that does not expect you to transition from bike lane to crosswalk.
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Old 01-31-11, 12:37 PM
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25 mph is too fast for a crosswalk. Is there a reason you can't just take the road to the station?
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Old 01-31-11, 12:48 PM
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either go MUCH slower through that crosswalk or take the street all the way to the train station itself.

me? i always bike on the street unless there is a super-compelling reason to take a short bit of sidewalk to get around some major hassle/hazard, and i don't see a compelling enough reason from your map for you to switch over to the sidewalk before you get to the train station.
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Old 01-31-11, 02:42 PM
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Maybe you shouldn't be taking "the easiest route" to get on the sidewalk. Especially since you are aware that cars rarely stop where they are supposed to.

Part of my commute took me over a bridge to a MUP. To get to the MUP I would need to either ride on the sidewalk over the bridge and then merge, or slow down and use a sidewalk ramp where my turn was. Most of the time I chose the sidewalk ramp.
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Old 01-31-11, 03:04 PM
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When I was in Britain, I was admonished 'the pavement (sidewalks) is for people and dogs',

A) either wait for the car to finish its turn, at that corner , then cross the street, and get on the sidewalk, continuing at a slower speed , or
B) ride on the highway until you are at the station , pick the bike up , and walk it the rest of the way.

Blowing Pedestrians off the sidewalk pisses them off ..
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Old 01-31-11, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by mtnwalker View Post
Transitioning from street to crosswalk is not something I consider right of way for cyclists because its not something drivers will normally expect you to do.
Some bike lanes in NY suburbs run along sidewalks and cross the streets in the same spot or they may be shared paths used by pedestrians and cyclist. From a driver's perspective it may look like a cyclist is coming from a sidewalk.
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Old 01-31-11, 03:31 PM
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If you want to be treated as a pedestrian, get off your bike and cross the street when the walk sign allows. Otherwise, you are in no man's land as far as rules of the road are concerned, and would be as much (if not more) at fault as the car trying to turn. I'd say it's your obligation to keep clear of turning cars. Airzound??? Surely you jest!
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Old 01-31-11, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Speedwagon98 View Post
When I go to school, I do a 2 mile commute to the light rail station. At the very last light, I go from the bike lane in the road, into the crosswalk to hop up on the sidewalk, as this is the easiest place to get up on the sidewalk to get to the station. Frequently, people will pull up to this light, and not stop behind the crosswalk like they are supposed to, but stop in the crosswalk, blocking my path to the sidewalk.

I'm basically just typing this to say I find it very annoying, as I have had to frequently hit the brakes hard at 25mph to compensate for them(it is a long downhill section).

If you were me, would you let it be? Or make good use of the airzound mounted on the bicycle?
That would be rude and interrupt their phone call.


This is the exact reason that got me to realize how dangerous crosswalks and bikes were and got me staying in the road. I see your reason for riding there but nothing you do is going to fix the stupid of the drivers. Be careful.
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Old 01-31-11, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by mtnwalker View Post
As an occasional driver who is guilty of not stopping behind crosswalks especially when I'm making a turn I will have to say you need to be more predictable as a rider. Drivers who are making a right turn will usually go over the crosswalk to better see cross traffic. I will stop behind the line if I see pedestrians crossing but if I see a bicycle on the road I will expect that rider to stay on the road.

Transitioning from street to crosswalk is not something I consider right of way for cyclists because its not something drivers will normally expect you to do. If this was me riding I will stop on the side of the street and lift the bike onto the sidewalk. It may take longer but its definitely safer. The worst thing that can happen is if you get hit by a car with a driver that does not expect you to transition from bike lane to crosswalk.
I understand what you are saying, however, a vehicle is supposed to stop behind a crosswalk by law anyways. Just because I'm not being safe about it, doesn't give a driver the right to disobey a law about where they are supposed to stop. Also, this is a fairly common practice here, as I see many other cyclists run up onto the sidewalk at this point just like I do.

Originally Posted by himespau View Post
25 mph is too fast for a crosswalk. Is there a reason you can't just take the road to the station?
At this particular area, I could. However, to do so means entering the flow of traffic(bicycle lane ends), and then abruptly stopping in the traffic lane to jump up onto the curb(I can't bunny hop) and proceed up to the station.
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Old 01-31-11, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
either go MUCH slower through that crosswalk or take the street all the way to the train station itself.

me? i always bike on the street unless there is a super-compelling reason to take a short bit of sidewalk to get around some major hassle/hazard, and i don't see a compelling enough reason from your map for you to switch over to the sidewalk before you get to the train station.
My alternative is to ride the street, then make an abrupt stop in a lane of traffic to get up onto the sidewalk to the station. I don't see how this is safer.
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Old 01-31-11, 08:53 PM
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Kick their headlights out on the way by, or leave a dent in the hood with a U-lock.
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Old 01-31-11, 08:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Wake View Post
Kick their headlights out on the way by, or leave a dent in the hood with a U-lock.
I don't think I'm good enough to do that, while also dodging the utility box and traffic light pole directly on the far side of them.
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Old 01-31-11, 08:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Speedwagon98 View Post
I understand what you are saying, however, a vehicle is supposed to stop behind a crosswalk by law anyways. Just because I'm not being safe about it, doesn't give a driver the right to disobey a law about where they are supposed to stop. Also, this is a fairly common practice here, as I see many other cyclists run up onto the sidewalk at this point just like I do.
Qiute possibly they did stop behind the crosswalk and seeing no pedestrian to yield to, creep up to safely turn on red.
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Old 01-31-11, 08:58 PM
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I was riding home and seen a fellow cycle commuter go down, it was a similar situation. The guilty party was pulling out of a petsmart and pulled into the roadway just enough to clip the cyclist. I stopped and made sure he was ok, but the damage was done, severe bruising and possible broken patella. Cars always win, ride defensively.
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Old 01-31-11, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by AdamDZ View Post
Some bike lanes in NY suburbs run along sidewalks and cross the streets in the same spot or they may be shared paths used by pedestrians and cyclist. From a driver's perspective it may look like a cyclist is coming from a sidewalk.
True, but not in this case. The OP is obviously coming from the street and transitioning onto the sidewalk via crosswalk. If I see a bike coming off the sidewalk onto the crosswalk then I kinda expect that rider to continue on to the sidewalk.
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Old 01-31-11, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
Qiute possibly they did stop behind the crosswalk and seeing no pedestrian to yield to, creep up to safely turn on red.
If there are only a few cars turning left(or none at all), I can see the right turning cars approaching the intersection probably from just as they pass the last house there. It is a reasonably open field. So the only time I can't see them, is a lane full of left turning vehicles. Most all of the time I see people approaching, they don't stop behind the crosswalk.
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Old 01-31-11, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Speedwagon98 View Post
I understand what you are saying, however, a vehicle is supposed to stop behind a crosswalk by law anyways. Just because I'm not being safe about it, doesn't give a driver the right to disobey a law about where they are supposed to stop. Also, this is a fairly common practice here, as I see many other cyclists run up onto the sidewalk at this point just like I do.



At this particular area, I could. However, to do so means entering the flow of traffic(bicycle lane ends), and then abruptly stopping in the traffic lane to jump up onto the curb(I can't bunny hop) and proceed up to the station.
Well, two wrongs doesn't make a right now does it. You are expecting the car to stop behind the line by law. Yet you expect it to be OK to ride on the sidewalk. Its hard to convince people to follow the law when you are breaking them yourself. In most places riding on the sidewalk is illegal.

Based on your map there is a bike lane on the other side of the intersection where you can safely stop and lift your bike onto the sidewalk.
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Old 01-31-11, 09:06 PM
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Originally Posted by mtnwalker View Post
Well, two wrongs doesn't make a right now does it. You are expecting the car to stop behind the line by law. Yet you expect it to be OK to ride on the sidewalk. Its hard to convince people to follow the law when you are breaking them yourself. In most places riding on the sidewalk is illegal.

Based on your map there is a bike lane on the other side of the intersection where you can safely stop and lift your bike onto the sidewalk.
I am not breaking the law, by riding on the sidewalk here. Only in Denver is that illegal. Littleton is legal.

But I do see what you are saying about stopping in the bicycle lane on the far side of the intersection. Hadn't considered that before.
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Old 02-01-11, 08:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Speedwagon98 View Post
If you were me, would you let it be? Or make good use of the airzound mounted on the bicycle?
Airzound is best when people wake up and realize they are not paying attention or doing something they know is "not right". Unfortunately motorist who don't stop where they should do not realize they are breaking the law so all you end up being is an obnoxious cyclists.

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Old 02-01-11, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Speedwagon98 View Post
But I do see what you are saying about stopping in the bicycle lane on the far side of the intersection. Hadn't considered that before.
I'd be ready to do either. If there is nothing blocking the crosswalk/sidewalk, take it. If there is a car there, continue across the intersection, stop in the bike lane (after checking to make sure another bike isn't coming up behind you) and lift up on the curb.
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