Ever Have a Motorist Throw Something at You?

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by gntlmn, Aug 13, 2004.

  1. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    Today I was only a few miles into my ride when I slowed and turned right at an intersection. As I sped up, a red Chevy Suburban approached from behind. Suddenly, the driver hit the gas and sped off as a large cup of soda pop was hurled at me by the passenger beside him. It hit the railing and splattered, barely missing me.

    I began to speed up to see if I would have a chance to catch them, but they drove toward the next intersection very quickly, weaving through traffic and getting into position to make a right turn ahead of all other traffic. I knew I wouldn't be able to catch them. So I turned off where I usually do.

    After I gave up the chase, I looked at my heart rate. It was up 15 bpm higher than I intended to go at point in the ride.

    Later, when I was about halfway up the mountain climb I was doing, I smiled to myself when I realized I wouldn't have turned around and gone home even if I had sticky soda pop all over myself.

    Has anyone else had motorists chuck things at them? What was your reaction? Did you give them chase?
     
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  2. Rompinrhino

    Rompinrhino New Member

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    I've had that same experience, but I was in my driveway shoveling snow, and it hit me. It really sucks that some people have nothing better to do than throw shit at other people. On the bike, I've had a few things tossed in my general direction, never with aim. It's been mostly garbage. The best is siting at an intersection and having some kid lean out a window next to you and start yelling at you. I just sit there and look at them because I dont know what to say, and even if I did, I dont think they'd comprehend. Thankfully, since I've moved out to Ca, I havent had one instance of agression toward me.
     
  3. nomis

    nomis New Member

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    a couple of weeks ago some rednexx threw their fast food leftovers at me out the cab of their pickup truck & shouted something i couldn't understand. i got hit by a few french fries but was otherwise unscathed. i was too stunned to give chase, but i doubt i could have anyway -- it was on a long straight road with no other traffic, and they were easily doing 60 mph.

    maybe they don't like guys in lycra.
     
  4. Jakebrake

    Jakebrake New Member

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    A few years back I had someone throw a folded newspaper out at me. The driver was doing about 60 mph, he slowed down slightly, veered over so he could get closer, and then the passenger flicked it out hitting me full in the face. It knocked me right on my ass. Lovely. I was pissed, but, it happened so fast I barely remembered what color the pick up truck was. They sped off and you could hear them hootin' and hollerin'.
     
  5. Trekker2017

    Trekker2017 New Member

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    When I was riding across the United States I had one incident when in Alabama a beer can was tossed in my general direction by a couple of guys in a pick-up trailering a speed boat and another incident in New Mexico when a guy in a red pick-up coming in the other direction pulled into my lane and headed straight for me playing chicken.

    In Alabama there was nothing I could do and he gave me such a wide berth obviously not wanting to scratch his boat by hitting me that his aim was way off.

    In New Mexico there was no one on the road except me and the red pick-up. I was going slow and he was going slow. I didn't lose my cool. I merely pointed my finger at him like a gun and he pulled back in his lane. As we passed we smiled and waved at each other.
     
  6. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    I've been thinking about getting a few words emblazoned on my jersey: CAUTION: RIDER ARMED TO THE GILLS!

    I had a guy day before yesterday only about a mile from the other incident blast his horn at me as he moved toward me with an oversized RV trailering a large boat. He almost hit me, and I had the right of way. I gave him the finger where I suspected he was looking in the passenger side rear view mirror, and then as I circled forward to pass him in the next lane on the left side as he stopped at the yield sign to get on the highway, I noticed he was leaning out the driver side window about to yell at me. So I drown him out by yelling at him at the same time, telling him he was a complete idiot, where did he get his driver's license, blah blah blah. He had a bad case of road rage.

    Later, I imagined riding up to the driver side window and shooting pepper spray in his eyes. Ahhh, the things I imagine and would never do. Better yet would have been to call him a bunch of obscenities and then wait for him to get out of the rig. Then hit him with pepper spray.

    As usual, I just road on down the road...
     
  7. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    Yeah, when they ride off real fast like that, it's a dead giveaway that it was no accident. It's a good thing you didn't break any bones.

    I can catch those guys in the downtown area because I know the streets really well and the speed limit is 25 or 30. But on the faster roads, 35 and higher mph, no way unless traffic is heavy and they get jammed.

    I probably ought to make it a rule to cut my losses short. You never know what drivers might be packing either.
     
  8. Olasnah

    Olasnah New Member

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    I'd be interested to know the legal penalties for throwing an object at a rider. Potentially the impact of the object, whatever it might be, WILL cause an accident to happen of some sort. I guess it would depend upon the results of the accident, but surely the intention of the person throwing is to cause an accident, assault sounds like the least that the offender could be charged with.
     
  9. nomis

    nomis New Member

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    i bet a good lawyer could make an assault charge stick, esp. if there are witnesses.
     
  10. mattv2099

    mattv2099 New Member

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    About ten years ago when I was a teen ager someone threw an apple at me. It hit me in the ass. It hurt.
     
  11. KakenBetaal

    KakenBetaal New Member

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    I got hit by a van a while ago - it pulled so close to me that the whole of the side of the van brushed against me, and the mirror exploded into shards after hitting my back and arm. Didn't get the license plates, even though I sprinted after him since there wasn't enough traffic to hold him up at the t-junction ahead.
     
  12. eobrien

    eobrien New Member

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    Clear Channel stations in the American South have gotten into hot water over the last few months because some of their morning show disc jockeys advocated throwing empty bottles of Yoo-Hoo at cyclists. This started a week's worth of anti-cyclist rantings on the call-in shows, mostly the usual complaints about slowing down traffic, etc.

    I just think people lose IQ points when they get in cars; they do things that they would never do in other situations. The car creates a private atmosphere or enclave in which behavior has no consequences--for example, can you imagine anyone throwing trash on you while the both of you stood in line at the grocery store? In a car, one can speed away and escape the repercussions of such anti-social behavior.

    Another observation: all of the above stories included a phrase like "a guy in a pick-up..." Only men seem to do these kinds of things, and they usually drive trucks.
     
  13. Olasnah

    Olasnah New Member

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    The reason it's usually someone in a pickup is because you are typically dealing with people who don't have a whole lot of money, and they see cyclists as rich snobs who have nothing better to spend their money on. There are a lot of construction workers in my area because I'm in a new housing area, and so every time I go out it's like I have to pass a gauntlet of dirty looks and rude comments. The bikes usually look expensive, the helmets and jerseys attract attention and therefore must be expensive (And they are!) If you are wearing, riding or driving anything that denotes money in any way, you'll get similar reactions.
     
  14. chuy

    chuy New Member

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    same thing happened to me but now that i look back i'm glad i wasn't able to catch the kids (high school) that did it because i would most likely gone to jail for beating the @#$ out of them...literally - i was training to do ufc before i got into cycling and odds are i would of done the same thing back when i was a teen :) haha
     
  15. Cowboyathlete

    Cowboyathlete New Member

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    I wonder how some of these drivers would react if you pulled a pistol out of your pocket and aimed it at them??? LOL
     
  16. Salsa Rider

    Salsa Rider New Member

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    $1000 fine for littering in VA.

    The ones that annoy the crap out of me are the smokers that just flick their butts out the window. Take a look at the shoulder of the road. Use an ashtray f*$%wad.
     
  17. cheapie

    cheapie New Member

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    happens to me all of the time. i live in michigan and there is no shortage of IQ-challenged people driving trucks.

    my friend and have a saying that's somewhat accurate. not everyone driving a truck is an asshole but all assholes drive trucks.

    i would say that 9/10 of the time i go on a road ride i get the finger, swerved or honked at, or stuff thrown at me. i've had bottles, changes, skittles, etc. chucked at me. and i'm a courteous rider. i stay near the edge unless the road is crappy. i generally react when they do. a lot of times they'll hit the brakes like they're going to stop but they never do.

    recently i was riding through town at night, on the freakin' sidewalk and a bunch of teenagers called me an effing fagot. i turned around and started chasing. they got stopped by a red light and i was almost to their car when it turned green. the next light was red and i thought i was golden. they turned into a gas station in what i thought was an attempt to ditch me and drive through the parking lot and out onto the other road.

    instead they parked and i rode ride up next to then and asked them what their problem was. scared the piss out of them. they had no idea i had chased them down and looked kinda freaked out. lol. it was great. i felt like the dog that chased a car and finally caught it. now what?

    i just yelled at them a bit while they apologized and hemmed and hawed. :D

    if they would have thought about it, there was 4 of them and one tired ol' me. they coulda kicked my a$$. :cool:
     
  18. KakenBetaal

    KakenBetaal New Member

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    Mostly it's not worth the hassle if only insults have been passed. Life's too precious to waste time on these tossers. IMHO that'd be different if some actual harm was done though.
     
  19. eobrien

    eobrien New Member

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    I found this link in another thread. Basically, a guy in a truck honked at two cyclists who were riding in the road in Austin, TX. When they flipped him off, he pulled over to confront them, and one of them struck him from behind. The motorist was at first paralyzed from the chest down, and later died of pneumonia related to the paralysis.



    Two insights from my reading of the article: one, cyclists are a "problem" in Austin, according to the motorist and his family who were quoted in the story and the motorist probably felt justified in attempting to confront people exercising their legal right to ride in the road, and two, road rage nearly always ends badly for everyone involved.



    How do we as cyclists defend our rights to the road and our right to personal safety without resorting to the same aggressive, bullcrap behavior the motorists exhibit? Where is the line between assertion and aggression? I certainly advocate telling a driver when he/she has caused danger to a cyclist, but resorting to violence? And why in the world do cyclists in the road cause motorists so much aggravation? What kinds of drivers respond with threats, taunts, etc?

    http://philebus.tamu.edu/pipermail/bvc-chat/2004-April/002178.html
     
  20. JTEK

    JTEK New Member

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    ROFL!!! Thats the best story I've heard so far!

    I've never had things thrown at me, but I've been honked at a few times... even though I ride on the sidewalk for the short time that I have to, 'till I get to the bike path.
     
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