Hazardous Bike Lanes

Discussion in 'Commuting and Road Safety' started by Corzhens, Dec 4, 2015.

  1. Corzhens

    Corzhens Well-Known Member

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    I had seen a newly-painted bike lane in the nearby city. It's nice to know that there is a bike lane in the main road but I noticed that the lane is not wide enough or should I say it is too narrow as to provide safety to the rider. Take note that main roads here have fast vehicles and once hit can maim or even kill a rider. I wonder who took the measurement of that bike lane, it's like he did not check on the size very well.
     
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  2. kuroba

    kuroba Member

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    It's kinda like where I live, painting a "bike lane" it's the easiest way for an authority to look like they're pro-cycling without actually investing in infrastructure to make cycling easier to those who choose it as their main transportation.

    What is the speed limit over there? Here it's 60 kms/h but many drivers usually go over that, even at 80 km/h.
     
  3. Zhen25

    Zhen25 Member

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    So is it that the bike lane is located in the middle of the road? I would like to think that is closes to the sidewalk which is why it would seem narrow.
     
  4. Corzhens

    Corzhens Well-Known Member

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    @kuroba, there is practically no speed limit here although the main roads have 60 kph and the side roads are limited to 40 kph. But with the 2-wheels, that speed limit is not observed. @Zhen25, the bike lane here is in the outer portion of the road, just beside the sidewalk. This reminds me that a motorcyclist group is complaining, that the bike lane should be in the middle lane if not in the fast lane because the outer lane is used by public utility vehicles for loading and sometimes parking. So how can you have a smooth ride in that bike lane when you have to swerve once in while?
     
  5. bykster

    bykster Member

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    How the fuck do they not have the proper measurements for the bike lane? It's not like every cars and trucks and buses are using that lane. Unreal that something like that is allowed, but cities tend to give cyclists the short end of a stick really often. There was a bike line on the main street in my city and they decided there's no need for one so they shortened the sidewalk and use all that space for another car lane.
     
  6. Corzhens

    Corzhens Well-Known Member

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    That's the main reason why I created this thead. It makes me wonder why that particular bike lane is not up to the proper measurement. No other vehicle can use the bike lane because it is so narrow. Maybe that is one purpose of its being narrow so no other vehicle can use it except the 2-wheels. However, what I'm saying is that the lane is still narrow for the 2-wheels. Anyway, we'll just wait for further developments.
     
  7. pwarbi

    pwarbi Well-Known Member

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    I'd also have thought there would be a standard size that the bike lane would have to be, but judging by what a few cyclists have said, in some towns the cycle lanes are just an afterthought and they'll fit them wherever they can.

    Seems as though the health and safety of the cyclist isn't that important after all?
     
  8. sunshiney

    sunshiney Member

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    It seems like bike safety comes pretty low on the priority list in a lot of cities. Like @pwarbi said, it's usually an afterthought. The bike lanes where I live start and stop randomly, leaving you stranded and forcing you to merge with traffic at awkward times.

    It makes it particularly frustrating when drivers complain about cyclists because like...what do you want from us? We're doing the best we can with what we've got!
     
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  9. pwarbi

    pwarbi Well-Known Member

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    There doesn't seem to be any consistency with the bike lanes, and like you say they'll randomly start and stop. It's as if they have a bit is spare space so decide to put a bike lane in there, then, 200yds down the road it disappears again leaving you in the middle of a traffic lane.

    There's no planning involved, they're just put wherever they can fit.
     
  10. Corzhens

    Corzhens Well-Known Member

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    I am a rider and also a driver since I drive myself to work every day. But in spite of knowing the disposition of a rider particularly during a heavy traffic, I hate those riders who snake their way between vehicles. My car had 3 dents already and all because of those 2-wheels who keep on snaking when they see a space during a traffic stop. That's why I really want a bike lane to avoid incidents like that.
     
  11. Froze

    Froze Well-Known Member

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    At least you have painted bike lanes, where I live we have roads with big yellow signs that say bike route and there is no lane, no extra wide road, and no shoulder to ride on. The only thing I can think of is that the city got a grant and they spent it putting up signs with no road to support the idea, then beat their chests saying "look what we've done for cyclists in our city!"

    I also hate cyclists that can't seem to obey simple traffic laws and why they think they're above the law because they're on a bicycle.
     
  12. Flatbardave

    Flatbardave Member

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    Is there is a standard for bike lane width? We have a new road, that's almost finished, with
    some bike lane markers. Next Summer I'll give it a try.

    Here there are some "Non-motorized" paved paths along the roads.
    They migrate to one side of the rod to the another. I tried riding them & found many
    to be "high risk".
    Most seem ok if you are riding with traffic, but if the path is on the "wrong side" it's scary.
    Driver who are turning right onto the road are looking left, & if you try to cross in front of them,
    better have have eye contact with the driver cause when there's a traffic opening, they're
    looking left, don't see you coming from their Right side, & BOOM!, they pull out right over you,

    I think in most instances it's better to ride the shoulders
    than to be riding the wrong way on a path along the road.

    IMO, I feel safer riding a wide shoulder than a "non-motorized" paved path.
    There are a few paths here with few road crossings, & are great in the summer, but
    get little or no winter maintenance.

    Pic of one of the new paths going in, Bogard Rd near Palmer. Should be done by mid Summer 2016.
    0829151942-00.jpg
     
  13. Susimi

    Susimi Well-Known Member

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    There's a bike lane in my old town that is put on the pavement but is clearly marked with lines and markings indicating it's use. The only dangers is that it crosses over several roads during it's course.

    The ironic thing about this bike lane though is that it was put in to ease traffic on the road, but the cyclists who ride along the road never use the cycle lane. It's pretty silly.
     
  14. Froze

    Froze Well-Known Member

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    I find the fact that in most areas of our country here in the USA that most bike lanes and paths are very lightly used unless it's in a warm climate like California. I guess what irks me is that fact that we as taxpayers are paying a lot of money, to the tune of $130,000 average per mile to have a bike lane put in for less than 1.5% of the commuting traffic to use. In fact where I live in the winter months you won't see a single person on a bike lane or path, even in the summer during the weekday I will run into between 1 to 5 people on a 5 mile stretch of supposedly the busiest section of the bike path. Of course there are grants for some of this stuff but a grant is not free money, so what happens with the use of a grant is the entire USA is paying for bike signs in my town which again to me is absurd. Then add on top of that we have these lovely bike lanes but to get them installed the city had to remove right hand turn lanes, so cars simply use the bike lane for their turn lane and the cops don't enforce the violation.
     
  15. Susimi

    Susimi Well-Known Member

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    The situation is similar over here I believe.

    I remember when the bike lane was put in. Cyclists using the road were complaining about the road being dangerous and so the cycle lane was put in but it seems to be hardly used. Just yesterday I passed a cyclist riding along the road when the cycle lane was a no more than 15 feet to the right of him. It's crazy, and as a result the council justify not putting in more cycle lanes in by saying "what's the point? They are hardly used"
     
  16. Corzhens

    Corzhens Well-Known Member

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    That's also what's happening here. The bike lane is quite narrow (this is the standard width and not the one I am citing in this thread with the wrong measurement). Riders would usually ride on the regular lane instead of the bike lane when they are in a hurry and they normally use the bike lane when there is heavy traffic on the road, the regular lanes are full.
     
  17. Froze

    Froze Well-Known Member

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    Guys, look, I'm a cyclist, I've ridden bikes for over 40 years and ride a fair amount averaging in my older years 3,500 miles a year (when I lived in California 14 years ago I averaged about 6,000 miles), so I am well versed in the needs of cyclists, but because of my age I've ridden on mostly streets WITHOUT ANY bike lane signs or markings and never felt I needed a special lane! In warm climate areas like California with high population density I can see a bike lane and path, but in California the average bike lane and path cost $535,000 per mile, that's crazy high! But ok, fine, California, especially around Davis area has a 23% cyclist commuter rate so I can see that expenditure being necessary in those types of areas, but once you leave the warmer states, which are few by the way, then that percentage drops dramatically to 1.5 to 2.5 percent. Even with all those expensive lanes California is having a run away cyclists fatality record, so the lanes aren't even working!!

    I cannot as a cyclist condon those lower percentage areas to install bike paths and lanes that cost an average of $130,000 taxpayer dollars per mile (nationwide average not places like California only) to appease so few riders, I think it's a waste of taxpayers money when there are other projects like repairing roads for cars to travel on would in turn make it safer for what little cyclists there are riding on them. The biggest problem I run into when riding is poorly maintained roads, if those roads were repaired then cyclists would be safe without the need for spending $130,000 per mile to install lanes, it's difficult to ride safely when I have to dodge around pot holes and fissures in the pavement not to mention debris on the side of the road. Add on top of that cars using the bike lanes to make turns etc is just an expensive joke to have them just so some politicians can beat their chest and say look what I've done for the city.

    I know what I said will irk a lot of cyclists but I don't care, it is after all an opinion.

    http://www.latimes.com/business/aut...s-national-bicycle-deaths-20141027-story.html
     
  18. ambal

    ambal Active Member

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    Lanes on the shoulder of the roads are good enough. In most cases we don't need separate infrastructure. This is a good example of what i'm talking about:

    [​IMG]

    Remember parked cars are the biggest waste of space in most cities, they just sit there stationary and take up what could be a bike lane, another car lane or a bus lane.
     
  19. Susimi

    Susimi Well-Known Member

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    The only other option is to make more off-road parking but then there is not really enough room around in some places to do that.

    What could be done is to enforce laws better about using bike lanes and parking on bike lanes and such but I doubt it will happen...
     
  20. Froze

    Froze Well-Known Member

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    The cops don't care about cyclists so they will never enforce the rules when it comes to motorists behavior toward laws aimed at protecting cyclists...but the cops also won't enforce laws that cyclists break either. I've had cars pass me giving me about 6 to 10 inches of space and a cop is behind them and the cop does nothing, and I live n a 3 foot rule area! Nor do the cops care if a cyclist runs a red light or rides at night with no lights or reflectors. There are a lot more laws that both motorists and cyclists break that goes unpunished.

    On another note, cyclists need to be a lot less rude to motorists, I've seen cyclists swerve in front of a car forcing the car to slam on their brakes, then the motorist honks their horn and the cyclist flips them off and yells a colored metaphor just to put the cherry on top of the deseart.

    Someone asked what is the average bike path or lane width, it's 5 feet, some maybe wider inside of parks though, but in some older neighborhoods I've see them about 3 feet wide.
     
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