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Bicyclists riding on the wrong side of the street...

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Bicyclists riding on the wrong side of the street...

Old 12-08-04, 10:31 PM
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G4teamG
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Bicyclists riding on the wrong side of the street...

Question. Ever have to slide over to left side of the street because a cyclist is riding on the wrong side of the street? Happens all the time and these guys won't even budge. I come to close to the traffic flow when this happens. Why don't the police start ticketing people that do this? Drives me nuts and I'm the one following the rules. I won't even mention the guys that ride on the sidewalk... No wonder we get a bad rap.
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Old 12-08-04, 10:50 PM
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All the time. I don't know about having to move to the left side of street but certainly the left side of the lane. Around here it's pointless to ask why the police won't ticket these people, often the police *are* these people.
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Old 12-08-04, 11:58 PM
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Last time this happened to me, I resolved that, when I see the situation coming about, to stop as close to the non-traffic side as possible, and let the wrong-side rider pass on the traffic side. Haven't had to do it yet, but that's what I'll do, no matter how inconvenient.

You can be the safest person in the world, but all it takes is that one single misjudgment for something bad to happen. No matter how much I think, spend, read about or act in regards to safety, it only takes that one misjudgment to throw it *all* away. I don't get offended easily, but this one thing bothers me because the two times it happened to me, afterwards I was angry at myself for letting someone else have sway over my safety.

If someone chooses to ride irresponsibly, then let him or her bear the results of that, not me.


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Old 12-09-04, 12:02 AM
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There's a kid in my neighborhood who's about twelve or thirteen, who I've seen several times on his bmx doing this:
1 Riding on the wrong side of the road.
2 Not wearing a helmet.
3 Talking on a cellphone.
All at the same time! This is on a moderately busy street, too. I postulate that he is being raised by wolves, since human parents would have more sense.
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Old 12-09-04, 12:18 AM
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I almost got tagged by a group of three kids going the wrong way at night. yesterday this lady weaving in and out of parked cars going the wrong way and no lights only got a bit close before she saw me and freaked out. I hope my headlight blinded her (G)
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Old 12-09-04, 03:08 AM
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Sometimes it is necessary to ride on the "wrong side" of the road. Many of our roads are not realistically designed for safe passage by bicycles. However, those riding on the "wrong side" must yield the right-of-way.

In an ideal world people would be required to pass a bicycle road test before being allowed a learner's permit for a motor vehicle.
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Old 12-09-04, 03:15 AM
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I don't ride on the wrong side of the road, but I do often ride on the sidewalk. Seems that our police officers would prefer bicyclists stay on the sidewalk and many streets that I use are not well-designed enough for safe commuting on the road itself. I would say my ratio is somewhere along the lines of 50/50 sidewalk/road. I prefer riding on the road since it's smoother and generally faster. Too bad a lot of our roads don't have a shoulder to give some breathing room between myself and our idiot drivers.
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Old 12-09-04, 03:30 AM
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These threads come up every so often. In reply to the original post, you'd be amazed the number of people who think that riding against the flow of traffic is supposedly safer. Those of us with a bit of riding experience are well aware that this is folly, but this belief persists regardless, to the extent that it is often taught in so-called "bicycle safety classes". Heck, I reckon there are probably even a few police who believe it themselves.

Now when I see it, I just let it happen and deal with it. I'm rarely riding sufficiently close to the gutter for it to ever be a real problem in anycase.
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Old 12-09-04, 06:15 AM
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Yep. This is the result of uninformed (although uniformed) cops visiting schools for safety programs and telling the kids it is safer to ride aginst the traffic 'where they can see the cars coming and stay out of the way'. I remember it clearly.
In my efforts as a cycling instructor and advocate, I see many people who are shocked whe informed that a cyclist is a vehicle, should behave as a vehicle and has all the same rights & duties as any other vehicle on the road.
Just keep riding sanely and set a good example for the others.
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Old 12-09-04, 06:48 AM
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Natural selection will take care of the guys who ride stupidly.
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Old 12-09-04, 07:01 AM
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Are you kidding? Talking on the phone while riding a bike!! What will be next? Playing a Gameboy or watching TV? The dumbest thing I ever saw was someone smoking a cigarette while riding a bike. Talking on the phone beats that! Yea, those two things go hand in hand. And to think I worry about the drivers.....
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Old 12-09-04, 07:53 AM
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An annoyance I run into a lot on my commute is kids riding double and on the wrong side.
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Old 12-09-04, 08:20 AM
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I've honestly had more close calls with other bikes than with automobiles.
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Old 12-09-04, 11:43 AM
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Where I live, the ones who ride on the wrong side of the street tend to be hispanic males who look like they're new to this country. They wear reguar clothes (jeans, tee, jacket if it's cold) and ride on dept. store bikes, usually at a very casual speed. I don't know what the riding rules are in their country, but I see them ride on both sides of the street so they probably choose the side of the street most convenient to them or whichever they think is safer. I used to go into the traffic whenever we passed, but now I play chicken with them, thus forcing them into the oncoming traffic. Now, some of them even recognize me and just stop and wait til I pass them or they go on the sidewalk.

Kids around here only stay in the neighborhood streets and ride on both sides or even the middle of the street if there are no cars coming. In CA, there has been a helmet law for several years now (all kids age 17 and under must wear one). What's stupid about these kids is that seems the "in" thing to do is wear the helmet, but not clasp the chinstrap together. So much for the helmet law. Go figure.
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Old 12-09-04, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by jharte
Are you kidding? Talking on the phone while riding a bike!! What will be next? Playing a Gameboy or watching TV? The dumbest thing I ever saw was someone smoking a cigarette while riding a bike. Talking on the phone beats that! Yea, those two things go hand in hand. And to think I worry about the drivers.....
This past summer when I was riding close to the beach there was a guy riding the wrong way talking on a cell phone and carrying a surfboard. I gave him lots of room.
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Old 12-09-04, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by jharte
Are you kidding? Talking on the phone while riding a bike!! What will be next? Playing a Gameboy or watching TV? The dumbest thing I ever saw was someone smoking a cigarette while riding a bike. Talking on the phone beats that! Yea, those two things go hand in hand. And to think I worry about the drivers.....
i saw some messenger dude come barrelling at me coming home yesterday on the multi-use path while playing with his PDA or sumthin, wierdest thing, looked like he was typing.... i guess if your that cool, riding a bike must get pretttty boring (no helmet either; you must get banned from the cool messenger hangouts if you wear one since none of em wear one here in philly)....
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Old 12-09-04, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by MrCjolsen
I've honestly had more close calls with other bikes than with automobiles.
In Davis? That surprises me.

Yeah, as Chris L said, this topic's come up many times before, so do a search. I generally give them a wide berth and say something snarky like, "Welcome to the States. We ride on the right in this country."

But one of these days, I'll probably just put my head down and hold my line and hope they crash into me.
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Old 12-09-04, 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by krispistoferson
There's a kid in my neighborhood who's about twelve or thirteen, who I've seen several times on his bmx doing this:
1 Riding on the wrong side of the road.
2 Not wearing a helmet.
3 Talking on a cellphone.
All at the same time! This is on a moderately busy street, too. I postulate that he is being raised by wolves, since human parents would have more sense.

You highly over estimate the parental instincts of the human race!


And I have to agree with Trevor about seeing bike cops going the wrong way down the street. And if you don't move for them and make them stop, you know you are getting a ticket for some minor violation of a bike law.
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Old 12-09-04, 12:47 PM
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Have certainly seen people doing it but have never encountered one directly whil riding.
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Old 12-09-04, 12:52 PM
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I had some guy call me a stupid b**** when I told him he was riding on the wrong side of the street. Same thing happened when I told this woman she was riding the wrong side of the street... and it was a ONE-WAY street! Some people know they are in the wrong, but they don't care. They expect us to swing into traffic and risk our necks because they don't want to ride with traffic.

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Old 12-09-04, 01:57 PM
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I usually say something like "Wrong Side" or just point to the other side of the street.
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Old 12-09-04, 05:58 PM
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Originally Posted by cryogenic
I don't ride on the wrong side of the road, but I do often ride on the sidewalk. Seems that our police officers would prefer bicyclists stay on the sidewalk and many streets that I use are not well-designed enough for safe commuting on the road itself. I would say my ratio is somewhere along the lines of 50/50 sidewalk/road. I prefer riding on the road since it's smoother and generally faster.
Sidewalks are for walking. Period.
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Old 12-09-04, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by emilymildew
Sidewalks are for walking. Period.
Dogma is for morons. Period.
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Old 12-09-04, 07:57 PM
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There are always exceptions: I exit my workplace parking lot onto a 4 lane expressway that has a 5th two way left turn center lane. There are 3' wide bike lanes on either side with a 12' wide, paved shoulder outside the bike lane. There is no traffic signal for about a mile either direction. Throughout the day left turning cyclists have little problem getting across the 5 lanes & into the bike lane although we sometimes have to wait exposed in the center lane for a break in traffic. But during afternoon rush hour (4-6PM) when it can take up to 10 minutes before there is a break in traffic, all four of us bike commuters in my office regularly ride against traffic on the wide shoulder to the nearest signal where there is a walk button to get us across the street safely. At that point it is also possible to continue on riding against traffic on an extremely wide (approx 9') sidewalk for about 1/2 mile where there is an exit from the sidewalk onto a bike trail. There are no driveways on this stretch and the sidewalk abuts a couple hundred acres of woods. On rare occaisions, over the past 3 years, I have met a single pedestrian, jogger or cyclist on this section & passed without any problems. I was once scolded by a middle aged lady cyclist who was wobbling along in the bike lane (Slow down & get on the right side of the road she says). My colleagues & I are all experienced cyclists. We see no problem with wrong way riding on this stretch & neither do the local police just as others as discussed earlier in this thread. Don
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Old 12-09-04, 11:19 PM
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I ride where I feel safe. I try to follow the rules.
But sometimes you just can not. With all the nuts out there. I do what it takes to get to work and home.
The cars do not follow the rules all the time so neither do I. As a cyclist, you have to do what makes you feel safe. I've been hit a lot by cars and most times they don't even stop. In my opinion, you have to do what you have to do. Thanks.
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