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On The Road Etiquette Question

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

On The Road Etiquette Question

Old 10-28-14, 02:48 PM
  #1  
DaveLeeNC
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On The Road Etiquette Question

I have read more than once that it is a good practice for a biker (assume a 'country, two lane road') to signal when said biker sees that it is safe for the car behind him/her to pass.

I have never liked this perspective. I don't like it when I am in the car and "get the signal" because I have no idea what kind of judgment/parameters said biker used to 'determine it is safe'. Yet I feel somehow compelled to pass or be viewed as inconsiderate or something.

Similarly I don't like giving these signals because I have no idea what kind of driving skills the person behind me has, what kind of pickup his/her vehicle has, what the driver behind me is or is not comfortable with, etc. So I NEVER do this.

But I am wondering how others feel about this (both as the biker and the driver).

Thanks.

dave
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Old 10-28-14, 02:56 PM
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I hold a safe line and leave it up to the driver to determine a safe time to pass. Normally they pass using the 3-feet law and at a good time.
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Old 10-28-14, 02:56 PM
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I signal. If they opt to ignore the signal, no harm done. But at least I've indicated that I'm aware of them and am aware they would probably like to pass. I'm all for encouraging a mutual recognition and spirit of cooperation.

BB
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Old 10-28-14, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by DaveLeeNC View Post
But I am wondering how others feel about this (both as the biker and the driver).
I operate my vehicle, you operate yours.
Semaphore signals are not required, proceed.

-Bandera
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Old 10-28-14, 03:08 PM
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I signal my own intentions.
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Old 10-28-14, 03:13 PM
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Old 10-28-14, 03:14 PM
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As a cyclist, if drivers behind me are following patiently I wave them through when I deem it's safe to pass. As the driver of a car, I only drive what I can see.
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Old 10-28-14, 03:15 PM
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FWIW, we deal with the same thing moving farm equipment. Same deal - we try to signal when it's clear to pass, but understand when a driver wants to wait till they see for themselves.
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Old 10-28-14, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by bbbean View Post
I signal. If they opt to ignore the signal, no harm done. But at least I've indicated that I'm aware of them and am aware they would probably like to pass. I'm all for encouraging a mutual recognition and spirit of cooperation.

BB
This.
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Old 10-28-14, 06:01 PM
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I use lane positioning as the first signal - I'll move from the center of the lane towards the right edge.
If that isn't sufficient, I'll wave the driver through.

.: YES I know you are there, YES it appears clear for you to pass; and NO I don't like having cars stack up behind me.

If it's really bad I will stop and step off the road until cars pass.

As a car driver, I appreciate that the cyclist has communicated that he is aware of me and wishes to be cooperative; but I'll decide if I can make the pass safely myself.

On the flip side, if I am on the bike and passing is unsafe I take an aggressive lane position and extend my L arm out and down, fingers spread, palm facing backward.
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Old 10-28-14, 06:43 PM
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I signal. When I'm a driver and see the signal, I get ready to pass, but don't come alongside the rider until I can see. I appreciate it.
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Old 10-28-14, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by bbbean View Post
I signal. If they opt to ignore the signal, no harm done. But at least I've indicated that I'm aware of them and am aware they would probably like to pass. I'm all for encouraging a mutual recognition and spirit of cooperation.

BB
Exactly what I do too & my opinion too.
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Old 10-28-14, 07:16 PM
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I communicate whenever possible.
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Old 10-28-14, 08:00 PM
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I usually wave for someone to pass me when two conditions are met:
1) the road is safe and clear to pass
2) they are still following me after it has been obvious for a while that it is safe and clear to pass but they still haven't done so.

Maybe it's just drivers in this state. Honestly, drivers here are terrible at passing other cars on marked two lane roads.
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Old 10-28-14, 08:27 PM
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I just use common sense.
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Old 10-28-14, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by bbbean View Post
I signal. If they opt to ignore the signal, no harm done. But at least I've indicated that I'm aware of them and am aware they would probably like to pass. I'm all for encouraging a mutual recognition and spirit of cooperation.

BB
+3
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Old 10-28-14, 09:22 PM
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I'm with the OP and don't wave cars forward. I also employ the NKFrench method of using lane position as a signal, in addition to head-checks. If a driver doesn't know I'm aware of them, they're not paying attention. Sometimes, in those cases when the driver doesn't respond to my actions, I'll move back to the center of the lane to increase my conspicuity.

the one exception is group rides in hilly terrain, when it's not only difficult to see when it's safe to pass, but difficult to know who knows a car is behind.
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Old 10-28-14, 10:22 PM
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Usually the car will just slow and move over to pass me, If the car decides to wait or I like to say "stalk me," I wave them on if there are no upcoming cars. Is it just me or do others get nervous if there is a car slowly driving behind you.
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Old 10-29-14, 03:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Bunyanderman View Post
Usually the car will just slow and move over to pass me, If the car decides to wait or I like to say "stalk me," I wave them on if there are no upcoming cars. Is it just me or do others get nervous if there is a car slowly driving behind you.
I hate that, too.
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Old 10-29-14, 04:03 AM
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I move over and leave the driver enough room to pass. To me it's a common sense survival instinct to defend against idiot drivers. I don't believe I've ever "signaled" to a driver when it's safe to pass. They can see for themselves, I'm not a tractor trailer blocking their view.
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Old 10-29-14, 06:34 AM
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I don't generally signal. I'll always move over a bit which is a clear indication that I'm aware of the car's presence. The exception to this practice is a driver that is nervous about passing; I don't like cars hanging around at my 8 o'clock position. I'll wave these guys buy, obviously only if it's crystal clear that they have a passing opportunity.
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Old 10-29-14, 06:37 AM
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FYI...Someone in our club, who is also an Assistant U.S. Attorney, looked into the liability issue related to waiving people around. In at least one case, a motorist was held partially liable for waving a car around when it turned out that it was not safe to pass and an accident occurred.
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Old 10-29-14, 06:57 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
FYI...Someone in our club, who is also an Assistant U.S. Attorney, looked into the liability issue related to waiving people around. In at least one case, a motorist was held partially liable for waving a car around when it turned out that it was not safe to pass and an accident occurred.
I was told something similar by a LEO many years ago when I was involved in a car on car accident that involved someone waving me out into traffic. I'm much more conservative in my own hand signals to others as a result.
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Old 10-29-14, 06:59 AM
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I will signal them to pass and wave a "thanks" that they were patient and courteous rather than trying to squeeze me over.
It costs nothing to be courteous and may reap rewards.
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Old 10-29-14, 07:06 AM
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Originally Posted by bbbean View Post
I signal. If they opt to ignore the signal, no harm done. But at least I've indicated that I'm aware of them and am aware they would probably like to pass. I'm all for encouraging a mutual recognition and spirit of cooperation.

BB
I do the same.
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