Drivers License, Bicycle rules

Discussion in 'Recumbent bicycles' started by Denny Voorhees, Mar 22, 2003.

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  1. The Bicycle Registration thread and a nasty head cold on an acceptable Saturday for riding (mid 50's
    little wind), got me thinking about what could be done to make our riding on the road safer and
    better. If states Driver License Tests required a knowledge of rules of the road for cyclists, it
    would be a big help. Drivers quite frankly don't know how to handle a bicycle. I've noticed the
    simple hand signals I commonly use like "Slow down" "left" and "right" often don't seem to register.
    There is also allot of confusion on where a cyclist should be to make a left turn across traffic.
    How bicyclist should travel with the traffic not against it. Not only would this extra testing help
    educate the driving public, it would also work on the riding public. I am really disturbed about the
    number of casual adult cyclists I see riding against traffic. I often slow down when I'm riding
    toward them, and tell them they are on the wrong side of the road. The nasty comments are
    unbelievable. I don't think this law is enforced at all. It's been my experience that police cars
    will naturally drive by a rider on the wrong side of the road. It would cost little to implement and
    over the years the benefit to the public would be noticeable. Let the flames begin Denny in Sayre,Pa
    "Bent but not broken" www.recumbentstuff.com
     
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  2. Mark Miller

    Mark Miller Guest

    Denny Voorhees wrote in message ... It's been my experience that police cars will naturally
    >drive by a rider on the wrong side of the road.

    I think that is the core of that matter...We don't need more laws, we just need to enforce the laws
    we have, especially the speed limit laws.
     
  3. Rob Rudeski

    Rob Rudeski Guest

    Hi All,

    Today I went for a morning ride, and just after I ended my ride, a county deputy sheriff (Dade
    County, GA) stopped me and said You can't ride that thing down the middle of a state highway." The
    state highway in question is hwy 136 through the county, which is a pretty rural road, and in the
    morning on weekends, it's almost devoid of cars.

    I replied to the deputy that everything I had read indicated that a bicycle is a vehicle and
    entitled to use the roads as much as a car.

    This seemed to annoy him a little, but then he changed to "Well you should at least ride on the
    shoulder (no shoulder on this road) or ride on the back roads."

    I told him that I move to the right if there are cars behind me, but I wasn't going to not ride on
    the road. He claimed he was only interested in my safety.

    I wonder what my future rides are going to be like if he sees me on the road again?

    Rob

    "Denny Voorhees" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > The Bicycle Registration thread and a nasty head cold on an acceptable Saturday for riding (mid
    > 50's little wind), got me thinking about what
    could
    > be done to make our riding on the road safer and better. If states Driver License Tests required a
    > knowledge of rules of the road
    for
    > cyclists, it would be a big help. Drivers quite frankly don't know how to handle a bicycle. I've
    > noticed the simple hand signals I commonly use like "Slow down" "left" and "right" often don't
    > seem to register. There is also allot of confusion on where a cyclist should be to make a
    left
    > turn across traffic. How bicyclist should travel with the traffic not against it. Not only would
    > this extra testing help educate the driving public, it
    would
    > also work on the riding public. I am really disturbed about the number of casual adult cyclists I
    > see riding against traffic. I often slow down when I'm riding toward them, and tell them they are
    > on the wrong side of the road. The nasty comments are unbelievable. I don't think this law is
    > enforced at all. It's been my experience that police cars will naturally drive by a rider on the
    > wrong side of the road. It would cost little to implement and over the years the benefit to the
    > public would be noticeable. Let the flames begin Denny in Sayre,Pa "Bent but not broken"
    > www.recumbentstuff.com
    >
    >
    >
    >
     
  4. Has anyone here EVER seen a bicyclist, DF or Bent, stop at a stop sign? I don't mean slow down, but
    actually stop? I discount being forced to stop due to cross traffic, but instead refer to the usual
    automotive practice of stopping at a cross street, looking for traffic and proceeding. And remember
    that if you use a crosswalk to cross the street, you must walk your bike across, thus becoming a
    pedestrian,if you ride you are a vehicle and thus must wait for the light to change in your favor.
    Bicyclists are the biggest bunch of scofflaws out there, no wonder the auto drivers are permanently
    pissed at us. We want to have it both ways, pedestrians when that favors us, and vehicles when it
    does not. Let the Flames begin................
     
  5. Paul Bruneau

    Paul Bruneau Guest

    Since you like top posting (I'm partial to it myself), I'll do it your way :)

    In many states (including my Michigan) a cyclist has to ride as far to the right as practicable
    (which usually means "as practical", but may not...it takes a village of lawyers), so he could get
    you for that probably. But he probably can't get you for riding on the highway, and he certainly
    can't force you to stay on back roads :) He probably can't force you to the shoulder.

    But you should have a look at your state's vehicle code to see for sure what the law is. Often, the
    policemen won't know, or will think they can make something up "for your safety". However, I would
    probably agree with him that you shouldn't ride in the middle of the lane even if there isn't any
    traffic (not that my opinion should matter much!)

    As an aside, a few years ago I was shocked to see that in Georgia, when you buy a car, they just
    stick a photocopied piece of paper in the window that says something to the effect of "Don't y'all
    worry none, I'm a-gonna get me one of those license plate doo-dads any day now". In Michigan, we are
    a little stricter about auto registration :)

    PB

    Rob Rudeski wrote:
    > Hi All,
    >
    > Today I went for a morning ride, and just after I ended my ride, a county deputy sheriff (Dade
    > County, GA) stopped me and said You can't ride that thing down the middle of a state highway." The
    > state highway in question is hwy 136 through the county, which is a pretty rural road, and in the
    > morning on weekends, it's almost devoid of cars.
    >
    > I replied to the deputy that everything I had read indicated that a bicycle is a vehicle and
    > entitled to use the roads as much as a car.
    >
    > This seemed to annoy him a little, but then he changed to "Well you should at least ride on the
    > shoulder (no shoulder on this road) or ride on the back roads."
    >
    > I told him that I move to the right if there are cars behind me, but I wasn't going to not ride on
    > the road. He claimed he was only interested in my safety.
    >
    > I wonder what my future rides are going to be like if he sees me on the road again?
    >
    > Rob
    >
    > "Denny Voorhees" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    >
    >>The Bicycle Registration thread and a nasty head cold on an acceptable Saturday for riding (mid
    >>50's little wind), got me thinking about what
    >
    > could
    >
    >>be done to make our riding on the road safer and better. If states Driver License Tests required a
    >>knowledge of rules of the road
    >
    > for
    >
    >>cyclists, it would be a big help. Drivers quite frankly don't know how to handle a bicycle. I've
    >>noticed the simple hand signals I commonly use like "Slow down" "left" and "right" often don't
    >>seem to register. There is also allot of confusion on where a cyclist should be to make a
    >
    > left
    >
    >>turn across traffic. How bicyclist should travel with the traffic not against it. Not only would
    >>this extra testing help educate the driving public, it
    >
    > would
    >
    >>also work on the riding public. I am really disturbed about the number of casual adult cyclists I
    >>see riding against traffic. I often slow down when I'm riding toward them, and tell them they are
    >>on the wrong side of the road. The nasty comments are unbelievable. I don't think this law is
    >>enforced at all. It's been my experience that police cars will naturally drive by a rider on the
    >>wrong side of the road. It would cost little to implement and over the years the benefit to the
    >>public would be noticeable. Let the flames begin Denny in Sayre,Pa "Bent but not broken"
    >>www.recumbentstuff.com
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >
     
  6. John Riley

    John Riley Guest

    Denny Voorhees wrote: [...]
    > If states Driver License Tests required a knowledge of rules of the road for cyclists, it would be
    > a big help. Drivers quite frankly don't know how to handle a bicycle. I've noticed the simple hand
    > signals I commonly use like "Slow down" "left" and "right" often don't seem to register. There is
    > also allot of confusion on where a cyclist should be to make a left turn across traffic. How
    > bicyclist should travel with the traffic not against it.

    I think drivers' ed classes should start out on bikes.

    > Not only would this extra testing help educate the driving public, it would also work on the
    > riding public. I am really disturbed about the number of casual adult cyclists I see riding
    > against traffic. I often slow down when I'm riding toward them, and tell them they are on the
    > wrong side of the road. The nasty comments are unbelievable. [...]

    Cyclists in Toronto know better, but most still ignore most of the laws. OTOH many cars ignore most
    of the laws as well. The cars have higher top speed, so when they slow for a stop sign, it looks
    like they are stopping, but in the end, the cyclists and cars are often rolling through the stop
    signs at about the same speed! The police seem to think it is beneath them to enforce this stuff.

    John Riley
     
  7. Hi, Steve, this is a great post and well stated.

    It not only mirrors my experience but also my feelings.

    How can anyone reasonably expect to receive respect and consideration from other road users, when
    they are not prepared to show respect themselves?

    To my mind, being a minority group on the road, it really behooves us to behave in a law
    abiding manner.

    We are, in essence, (in my mind anyway) ambassadors for the HPV movement. Young children ape us,
    just like they do football players, basketball players, etc. So we have a choice. We can set them an
    example of observing OR flouting the law.

    Lewis.

    http://home.earthlink.net/~limeylew/index.html

    ********************************

    [email protected] (Steve McDonald) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > I'm sorry to say that your observations about bicyclists routinely running stop signs and red
    > lights, matches my own experience. I don't like the way many drivers treat us, but I can
    > understand how this is one good basis for their lack of respect.
    >
    > I'm the only rider who I know who stops at such controled intersections, except when cross
    > traffic compells it. I always stop when required and it's difficult for me to keep up with
    > other riders going crosstown, when they breeze on through each stop sign. I don't understand
    > it. Many of these people are upstanding citizens, who may otherwise be leading respectable,
    > law-abiding lives. But, when they mount a bike, all such adherence to rules and courtesy on
    > the road seems to be dismissed.
    >
    > I average 40 miles of riding daily, partly for training and also for transportation. For most
    > of my life, I have relied about 90% on human-powered means of moving myself about. I can
    > truthfully and sadly say that in all that time, I have never once seen another bike rider
    > obey a stop sign, unless traffic or a nearby cop made it necessary. Many times, other riders
    > have ridiculed me for stopping at a sign or red light. I realize that making these statements
    > here are close to being pointless, as only the rare non-riders who may view this group's
    > messages, have any regard for what I'm saying. I'd like to make the acquaintance of just one
    > other bicyclist who stops when there's no other reason to do so, than to show respect and
    > acceptance for the rules of traffic. If there are some other such riders, our names might be
    > compiled into the world's shortest list.
    >
    > Steve McDonald
     
  8. Car drivers are weird A couple of times when I was making a Left Turn...instead of the usual hand
    signal, I would just point to the left with my arm straight out and one finger pointing. I looked
    in my mirror and saw the car behind me had turned Left. At 1st I thought this was a coincidence,
    but it keeps happening. The car driver must think either I am asking him to look to the Left or
    steer his car to the left and stop. Too bad I don't have a camcorder facing backwards....I'd love
    to see if I jestured Left, then Right and Left again...just to see if the car swerves back and
    forth down the street.

    As for Driver Ed for cyclists...fer sure eh and do it when they are kids (make it a compulsory
    school subject) and have a followup supervised riding test every 10 years till age 90. In particular
    "Defensive Riding and Escape Techniques"...I could teach such a course er or was that "Offensive
    Riding and Escape Techniques"?

    Oh Yeah...under 3 bent shops in Toronto...Triketrails (Whitby) isn't exactly Toronto, neither
    is the Bicycle Spokesman (Richmond Hill), what about Sandy's Cycle on Laird Drive...he sells
    bents (or) did.

    Today is the 2nd really nice day in Toronto (Mar.17 being #1).
    -----------------------------------------------------------

    "John Riley" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    >
    >
    > Denny Voorhees wrote: [...]
    > > If states Driver License Tests required a knowledge of rules of the road
    for
    > > cyclists, it would be a big help. Drivers quite frankly don't know how
    to
    > > handle a bicycle. I've noticed the simple hand signals I commonly use
    like
    > > "Slow down" "left" and "right" often don't seem to register. There is also allot of confusion on
    > > where a cyclist should be to make a
    left
    > > turn across traffic. How bicyclist should travel with the traffic not against it.
    >
    > I think drivers' ed classes should start out on bikes.
    >
    > > Not only would this extra testing help educate the driving public, it
    would
    > > also work on the riding public. I am really disturbed about the number
    of
    > > casual adult cyclists I see riding against traffic. I often slow down
    when
    > > I'm riding toward them, and tell them they are on the wrong side of the road. The nasty comments
    > > are unbelievable. [...]
    >
    > Cyclists in Toronto know better, but most still ignore most of the laws. OTOH many cars ignore
    > most of the laws as well. The cars have higher top speed, so when they slow for a stop sign, it
    > looks like they are stopping, but in the end, the cyclists and cars are often rolling through
    > the stop signs at about the same speed! The police seem to think it is beneath them to enforce
    > this stuff.
    >
    > John Riley
     
  9. I do daily. Living across the street from the Pacific Ocean helps, since I cannot swim. Of course, I
    wrote that before; praising a trike for complete stops on hills and stop signs or signals - and I
    also cursed a stupid mountain bike rider for rearending me at a stop sign a few months ago.

    This is a tourist trap, so I must stop and go with car/motorhome/SUV traffic- as screwy as it is-
    for MY survival!

    Chris Jordan Santa Cruz, CA.

    [email protected] (Michael Devenis) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Has anyone here EVER seen a bicyclist, DF or Bent, stop at a stop sign? I don't mean slow down,
    > but actually stop?
     
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