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"Rolling coal" to be made illegal in Colorado

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"Rolling coal" to be made illegal in Colorado

Old 05-11-17, 08:12 AM
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Chandne
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"Rolling coal" to be made illegal in Colorado

Finally, this was passed but the $100 fine is stupidly low. Anyway, as we get more and more cyclists and legislators become more in tune with the vulnerability and the benefits of cycling and cyclists, it should be safer and more enjoyable for us out on the narrow roads and canyons, especially.

Colorado is Smoking Out Coal Rollers; Practice to Be Made Illegal

I have had it happen to me and see it happen to cyclists ahead of me but on rare occasions since it is really only more "effective" on narrower roads and canyon-type roads and deserted roads. I have seen it happen 2-3 times. In addition, the yelling and flipping off- also had it happen to me 4-5 times.

I wish they had instituted a law/reg that said if you are found guilty of doing this, you instantly have to submit the vehicle for an emissions test and put all emissions equipment back on (if the vehicle came with it) and pay a $1000 fine at least.
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Old 05-11-17, 08:29 AM
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They already have laws against reckless driving (at least, I assume CO does). Charge them for that, because you can't do so without acting in a reckless manner.

The emissions stuff doesn't really affect me as a cyclist, so I'll leave that debate for P&R.
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Old 05-11-17, 08:32 AM
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It is easy to "roll coal" without emissions equipment, from what I understand. I am no diesel expert and I like diesel trucks (don't own one) for one specific use myself...sliding in a bed camper and going on trips around the US. Yeah, the reckless driving part is a good point. I am considering getting a camera myself later this year. As they get smaller and cheaper, they are going to be easier to mount backward and forward facing.
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Old 05-11-17, 08:42 AM
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There any added police funding to enforce this?
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Old 05-11-17, 08:56 AM
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I had this happen to me recently. Here in Alberta, we have virtually no laws when it comes to the condition of your vehicle. No mandatory inspections except when enforced by the insurance companies. And they are only concerned about safety. Every vehicle over seven years old has to be inspected by a licensed mechanic.

I think a reasonable punishment for "Rolling Coal" would be vehicle confiscation. The owner is too stupid to own a vehicle and is deliberately trying to cause harm. Confiscation takes care of the problem.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
There any added police funding to enforce this?
If police can write tickets for it, it becomes self-funding.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:05 AM
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I'm surprised it took so long, but I'm also sort of surprised that they're doing anything at all. Good for them.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:17 AM
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These are like 3' passing laws though. Hardly anything changes, some drivers will give you space, others will not. I mean what are you going to do get the license plate and report to police? Typical "word against word" argument will yield nothing. Even when I see cops, they hardly ever do anything even if someone does something right in front of them. I'm talking about these same kinds of "minor" violations, parked on the wrong side of the street, illegal U turns, etc. Cops aren't going to go out their way to do something about these kinds of infractions. Maybe for the most law abiding coal rolling redneck, this may have an effect, but there will be others who do it more just because "F* the gubberment!!!"
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Old 05-11-17, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
There any added police funding to enforce this?
The concept of unfunded mandates only exists when the federal .gov is attempting to force state governments to enforce federal laws.

At the state level, all laws passed by state legislatures are expected to be enforced by city, county and state agencies as applicable.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:24 AM
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This will have an impact once a few citations/tickets are issued. Word gets around, and cyclists are starting to carry tiny recording cameras, as are drivers. It's a good start to build cyclist awareness and safety...over time.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:24 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by cthenn View Post
Typical "word against word" argument will yield nothing.
Except that more cyclists these days are riding with cameras.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by cthenn View Post
These are like 3' passing laws though. Hardly anything changes, some drivers will give you space, others will not. I mean what are you going to do get the license plate and report to police? Typical "word against word" argument will yield nothing.
I've had three different CO police departments take action on complaints I filed with video proof of unsafe passing.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:30 AM
  #13  
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I live in rural Virginia and surprisingly, this has never happened to me. There's plenty of 'necks and 'breds around here that take pride polluting the air as much as possible. Virginia has strict vehicle inspection laws compared to most states... but people get around that by driving trucks with "farm use" license plates.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:36 AM
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I'd like to see these trucks grouped in with other large vehicles and require CDL's to drive them. This is a pet peeve of mine, it's always gotten under my skin to see these people driving these big HD trucks as grocery getters.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:56 AM
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Wow, that's surprising. I know Colorado is more "blue" than in years past, but I'd have thought the Republicans there would be on the Rolling Coalers side. You know, with their love affair of fossil fuels and "don't tell me what to do with my truck!" attitude and all.
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Old 05-11-17, 09:59 AM
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Things are changing here and with blue activism becoming pretty intense after Trump got in, some Republicans are starting to worry about their jobs...some are but not all. Still, with cycling being the state hobby, it is also becoming harder to ignore them. Cyclist have been killed here too, and that just gets cyclists wound up. With so many cyclists, cyclist safety is becoming hard to ignore, even for Republican politicians.

What cameras are some of you using or seeing used?
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Old 05-11-17, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
Finally, this was passed but the $100 fine is stupidly low.
Not necessarily; it gives the officer an excuse to do a quick roadside inspection, then tack on any illegal equipment charges that may apply. Essentially, the obvious violation just provides pretext for a fishing expedition.

Also, keeping the fine low means they're more likely to just pay it, thus leaving the offense on their record instead of fighting to make it go away.
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Old 05-11-17, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
Finally, this was passed but the $100 fine is stupidly low. Anyway, as we get more and more cyclists and legislators become more in tune with the vulnerability and the benefits of cycling and cyclists, it should be safer and more enjoyable for us out on the narrow roads and canyons, especially.
Whenever I take my bike out to the Methow Valley (a section of WA that looks and feels like CO), I'm amazed at how friendly the drivers are to me. People will slow down and wait for an opportunity to pass if the road is narrow or curvy. They'll move far into the next lane to go around me. Always, without fail. The entire region's economy is based on tourism for outdoor recreation. Most of the jobs in that valley are in hotels and restaurants and bike/ski/outdoor shops. The place is very community oriented and has a strong "we're in this together" attitude.

I haven't been to Colorado in a long time but I know a good deal of your economy runs on tourism, too. I would have hoped it would be better out there. Especially since I'm trying to convince Beth that we need to make a trip out to Ouray.
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Old 05-11-17, 12:35 PM
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yeah I've been smoked & it's incredibly stupid & disgusting. what makes some ppl happy is truly astonishing

not my picture
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Old 05-11-17, 12:49 PM
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Generally speaking, it is quite cyclist-friendly. The problem areas are on the narrow canyon roads where there is no shoulder/bike lane. On top of that, there are a decent number of working class guys who generally drive trucks (and some cars) and get really impatient with cyclists if they have to sow down to pass them or slow down around a curve and can't pass then for 10 seconds or whatever. It drives them nuts so they take it out on all cyclists they see. It seems to be getting better and maybe because they are being turned in. In that same area, a guy throw thumb tacks down. A cyclist found the discarded pack and the cops traced him to big that pack at a local store, and you know that isn't ending well for him. Cyclists have increased in number there in that canyon and I think people are getting more used to them.

I have only seen this 3-4 times and maybe forgotten another 3-4 so while it is not very frequent, it is still extremely dangerous. The vast majority of people give us room and move over past the middle line when it is safe to do so. That still makes me very wary of the problems areas but in my case, the big climbs are there. I do wave or nod as I see fit, and even say Hi when I see people outside as I ride by.

Ouray is AMAZING! It is a really laid back place and not crowded so people are chilled out. It's beautiful in that area. Go with no apprehension. I got there every year...Ouray, Telluride, Silverton, Aspen, Marble, etc.

Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Whenever I take my bike out to the Methow Valley (a section of WA that looks and feels like CO), I'm amazed at how friendly the drivers are to me. People will slow down and wait for an opportunity to pass if the road is narrow or curvy. They'll move far into the next lane to go around me. Always, without fail. The entire region's economy is based on tourism for outdoor recreation. Most of the jobs in that valley are in hotels and restaurants and bike/ski/outdoor shops. The place is very community oriented and has a strong "we're in this together" attitude.

I haven't been to Colorado in a long time but I know a good deal of your economy runs on tourism, too. I would have hoped it would be better out there. Especially since I'm trying to convince Beth that we need to make a trip out to Ouray.
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Old 05-11-17, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Shimagnolo View Post
I've had three different CO police departments take action on complaints I filed with video proof of unsafe passing.
Just curious, what type of action did they take - education, warning, other? And how do you know?
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Old 05-11-17, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
Ouray is AMAZING! It is a really laid back place and not crowded so people are chilled out. It's beautiful in that area. Go with no apprehension. I got there every year...Ouray, Telluride, Silverton, Aspen, Marble, etc.
Many years ago, I drove cross country and back with a girl. We camped a few nights outside of Ouray, on this dirt road that led to Yankee Boy Basin. I didn't have a bike with me at the time but we did some hiking and enjoyed the landscape immensely. I've been wanting to go back ever since, and this has been more than a decade. I've even got a few roads in mind to ride. Honestly, I could spend a lifetime there.
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Old 05-11-17, 03:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Chandne View Post
The problem areas are on the narrow canyon roads where there is no shoulder/bike lane.
That's why I don't cycle or drive a car on those roads on the weekends in nice weather. It's madness for all involved, in my opinion.
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Old 05-11-17, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
yeah I've been smoked & it's incredibly stupid & disgusting. what makes some ppl happy is truly astonishing

not my picture
I'm assuming that the Durango & Silverton has an exemption, because their locomotives make more smoke than that!
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Old 05-11-17, 04:54 PM
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"Rolling coal" IIRC generally involves badly tuned diesels or a direct to exhaust fuel injection system. (Yes, you can put a sort of injector in the exhaust which causes the smoke.)

Both of which are probably already ticketable offenses.
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