Two Paths Diverged in a City . . .

Discussion in 'Commuting and Road Safety' started by franklen, Sep 23, 2003.

  1. franklen

    franklen New Member

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    I need some opinions on these two situations.

    1) I access a bridge that touches down halfway across on an island in the middle of the Susquehanna River. I get to that point across a ped/bike bridge that doesn't go over the other half of the river. The problem is that at this point the cars coming across are already flying at thier 40-50 mph (it is posted at 40 mph). So it is quite scary to pop out among them and try to keep up anywhere near their pace. To make matters worse the two lanes in each direction are quite narrow (just enough for a car) and there is no shoulder, only a 2 foot high concrete barrier seperating the road from the sidewalk (which is also quite narrow, would have to totally slow down if needed to pass anyone else on the sidewalk).

    No major issues yet, though this is where I had my closest call when a bus failed to clear my lane when passing me, and I get honked and abused at here every other day it seems. I am also worried about when the weather turns bad and these vehicles coming across the bridge have trouble slowing/stopping and there is no place for me to go.

    What do you all feel about taking the sidewalk here versus the road? Does it set a bad example? Or is that one of the benefits/priveledges of biking that you have the sidewalk alternative when needed, and that vehicles should learn to accept that?

    2) When construction or an accident slows down traffic to a standstill, do you feel it necessary to stay in the que or do you feel it alright to bounce up on the sidewalk then, if there is not a wide lane or shoulder to advance on? Once again I dont want to anger drivers who we expect to treat us like road vehicles only to have them see me hit the sidewalk when it is convenient.

    All comments greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
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  2. jtfleming

    jtfleming New Member

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    I vote for PERSONAL SAFETY!!! I have encountered both situations, and headed for the sidewalk myself. Once on the sidewalk I just take it very slowly.
     
  3. Geonz

    Geonz New Member

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    I suspect I'd take the sidewalk to. In South Carolina I had a bridge to cross occasionally and when even pedestrians called out to me that I should be on the sidewalk (and not even derisively) I figured I might as well go with the status quo since I didn't have a 'movement' with me.
     
  4. HellonWheels

    HellonWheels New Member

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    Or is that one of the benefits/priveledges of biking that you have the sidewalk alternative when needed, and that vehicles should learn to accept that?
    >>>

    Yep! I often use the sidewalk when things get antsy and I get panicky. Dismount the bike, go to the sidewalk and voila! Instead pedestrian with all the rights and privileges thereto.

    Its our right, use it! In fact this is one reason why I give my husband that I refuse to drive a car. I can't just do that sidewalk thingy the way I can with a bike! (heehee)
     
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