Riding a bike on the sidewalk

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  • #26
Moonbear
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matthyaouw said:
Funny, it gets on the motorists tits when they use the road. Can't win really.
There you go! Maybe we should just ban them altogether if there isn't a designated bike lane. :devil: Maybe people just need some common sense not to try biking in places where it's not safe to do so. If the sidewalk is too crowded or you need to go fast, stay off it. If the street is too crowded and there's no place to get out of the way of the cars, stay off of it. If that leaves you with no place to bike, complain to the city council and get bike lanes put in, or stick to the parks.
 
  • #27
brewnog
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Moonbear said:
There you go! Maybe we should just ban them altogether if there isn't a designated bike lane. :devil: Maybe people just need some common sense not to try biking in places where it's not safe to do so. If the sidewalk is too crowded or you need to go fast, stay off it. If the street is too crowded and there's no place to get out of the way of the cars, stay off of it. If that leaves you with no place to bike, complain to the city council and get bike lanes put in, or stick to the parks.

There is absolutely no problem with a bike being ridden on any road (short of a motorway) providing both the cyclist and any motorists are following the highway code. End of story.
 
  • #28
BobG
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I'm seriously wondering what's up with some of these neighborhoods where no one walks. I guess I shouldn't be too surprised. One morning I saw someone slowly driving their car down the street, holding onto a leash with a dog on the other end. If there's people so lazy they have to sit in their car while walking their dog, I guess it shouldn't be that big of a surprise that there are neighborhoods where you never see anyone walking on a sidewalk.

Edit: When I was in the military, I lived in base housing for a few years. People in military housing are more friendly and helpful than in a lot of neighborhoods. So much so, it almost became annoying - everytime you walk to the store, at least one or two or three cars stop and ask if you need a ride and keep offering reassurances that it's no problem when you turn them down. Doesn't anyone like to walk once in awhile?

Bicycles definitely should use the road, along with other vehicles. Yes, they are slower than cars, but so are farm tractors. It's always a give and take whether on the road or on trails. A bicycle has the same rights as a car on the road, even if they can't very well demand their rights are respected. On trails, the pedestrian has the right of way, even though the considerate pedestrian steps off the trail when they hear a bicycle coming.
 
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  • #29
Integral
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stoned said:
in many European countries there are special bike lines exclusivelly made for bicyclers with their own signal lights and all the stuff. we have nothig like that in N.America and propably never gonna have.
You must be stoned...

Or perhaps have never been to Oregon. Bike paths are common here.
 
  • #30
matthyaouw
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Where I live, a bike lane usually constitutes a strip no more than 3 feet wide in the gutter, separated from the road with some white paint. More often than not there will be cars parked in them or periodically driving into them, and they dissapear at tricky junctions. Its a little safer than the road, but not by much. The only cycle tracks near my house that aren't on a road are pretty unsafe and secluded. Its a bit tricky if you need a bike to get around. It would be a hell of a lot easier if motorists and cyclists would just show some consideration towards each other. I feel sorry for the motorists who are around the reckless cyclists who pull out without warning, get in the way etc, but its pretty frustrating being nearly knocked off by cars, or having to wait 5 minutes to pull out into another lane because no one will stop to wait for you.
 
  • #31
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Well the street I will be riding on has a decent amount of traffic, and cars often park on the side. The sidewalks are quite wide though, so I will use them and risk pissing off a pedestrian, or maybe 2! instead of risking my ass with these moron drivers.
 
  • #32
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brewnog said:
There is absolutely no problem with a bike being ridden on any road (short of a motorway) providing both the cyclist and any motorists are following the highway code. End of story.
Oops, apparently not enough smilies to indicate sarcasm. :redface: Though, common sense would still be helpful on both sides, both the bicyclists who ride oblivious to traffic and down the center of the lane who ought to move to the side, and the motorists who can see them ahead and don't even try to give them room when passing. I'd still be too terrified to ride a bicycle around here; cars barely notice other cars let alone anything smaller and not motorized. (There seem to be an abundance of drivers around here who drive down the road with their tires ON the yellow line...when someone comes down the opposite side doing the same, the outcome is pretty predictable...no, these people shouldn't be allowed to drive, but since they are on the road anyway, it makes it pretty unsafe to be a bicyclist with people on the road who are that bad of drivers...do you really want to risk your own neck to prove a point that you should be allowed to share the road?)
 
  • #33
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Well, I have something to say about this topic.
I ride a bicycle fairly often here in the northwest U.S. I prefer to ride on the road(closest to the side, not in the actual vehicle lane) whenever possible because it IS a much smoother ride than if I were riding on the sidewalk.
However, there is a particular road here that has moderate traffic, and a good percentage of that vehicular traffic is of people rushing to work and also of the elderly commuting(the location has many elderly residents)
Now, on this road I use the sidewalk as much as possible because I consider it to be somewhat dangerous to be on the road. I'm not kidding. I've seem MANY an elderly driver driving down that street almost hugging the SIDE of the road(where I would be on a bike) Also, younger drivers rushing to/from work do NOT take the several curves in the road in a decent manner(again, I would likely be hit)
The pedestrian traffic on the sidewalk is very light, and I am always courteous to them(slowing down and even stopping if need be)
I see one or 2 police cars go by each time, and I have never been stopped(of course, they likely have better things to do).

In any event, be it a law or not, I am reminded of when I went camping with a friend in a National forest known to have wild animals, particularly bears, and he took a .357 magnum hangun with us during our trip. He told me that is was illegal for him to have the gun in this National forest, but he said this: "I would rather pay a fine and have my gun taken away than get mauled by a bear"
I've never forgot that.
 
  • #34
DocToxyn
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While we as cyclists are supposed to be treated as vehicles, that doesn't mean I push the limits of the law and common sense and ride wherever I please. I do take a somewhat longer route to work on my bike than if I took a car, mostly because the latter would require me to hit some pretty hairy four-lane intersections. I can get there pretty quickly and since I don't have to park a mile away, it probably evens out. It definitely evens out when I don't have to pay a parking fee or gas, plus I get to enjoy deer, birds and other critters on the off-road part of my commute. Most riders I know ride the road, but will plan their route to avoid known danger spots, heavy traffic or tricky situations.
 
  • #35
Monique
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You know what is hard, riding a bicycle in a city with tram-lines.. a bicycle wheel fits exactly into the tracks and you can come down pretty hard.

I once fell when sitting on the back of the bicycle, fortunately for me we fell the direction where I had my feet so was able to break my fall. My friend had a busted up knee and hand. Then there were many close encounters, but I always kept my balance.

The most annoying thing is making a left turn over a busy intersection with like 12 tram tracks and no left turn lane :grumpy:
 
  • #36
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Monique said:
You know what is hard, riding a bicycle in a city with tram-lines.. a bicycle wheel fits exactly into the tracks and you can come down pretty hard.
Lol. I did that about 3 weeks ago. I fell sideways into a taxi, then picked myself up and got out of there real quick before he could check and notice the big scratch I left.
 
  • #37
Moonbear
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loseyourname said:
Hey, if bike couriers can make it in Manhattan, you can ride a bike on the road anywhere. It's easy here. All the big roads have bike lanes, and the small roads usually don't even have any vehicle traffic.
I wonder what a bike courier lifespan is? :tongue: Actually, I've driven in NYC, and it's probably one of the better places to bike. Nobody can go very fast because of the traffic and the drivers are all on high alert for pedestrians, bikes, cars pulling out from parking spaces, erratic last minute turns of lost tourists who should've just taken a taxi, oh, and taxi drivers. I'd rather bike there than on the roads by my house out here in the suburbs of Cincinnati where drivers just don't pay attention to where they are going at all even though the traffic is substantially less (though, they are driving 45 mph through a 30 mph zone).
 
  • #38
cronxeh
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Moonbear said:
I wonder what a bike courier lifespan is? :tongue:

:rofl:

I've actually had a carmageddon kind of dark thought when I read that :rolleyes:
 
  • #39
brewnog
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Moonbear said:
Oops, apparently not enough smilies to indicate sarcasm.
There was a very good reason for that! :tongue:
 
  • #40
Evo
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There are some roads in America where this simply cannot be done. Some of the rural roads don't have bike lanes, and traffic may be heavy at some times (intercity highways). Usually the shoulder of the road extends to perhaps 0.3048 metres (meters :tongue2:) on average if there is no bike lane, and that isn't enough for a bicyclist to sufficiently manoeuvre.
Where I live the roads have no shoulders, the lanes are narrow and the shoulders drop immediately off into deep ditches. The roads are hilly and winding, which means passing is illegal (and impossible) most of the distance. Bicycles simply cannot go fast enough and I'll be damned if I'm going to drive 10 miles at 6mph because some idiot on a bike wants to go on a joy ride. Out here people have farms and there are often slow moving farm vehicles, but the drivers have BRAINS and COURTESY and will pull over periodically to let cars go by. The bicyclists however seem to have NEITHER BRAINS OR COURTESY and stay on the road and never allow traffic to pass.
 
  • #41
Evo
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brewnog said:
There is absolutely no problem with a bike being ridden on any road (short of a motorway) providing both the cyclist and any motorists are following the highway code. End of story.
Well, if the speed limit is 45mph, any bicyclist able to keep up with the flow of traffic is welcome to do so. :biggrin:
 
  • #42
In cities you are generally supposed to ride with traffic, as to not interfere with pedestrians, in small towns, the sidewalk is the way to go.
 
  • #43
brewnog
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Evo said:
Well, if the speed limit is 45mph, any bicyclist able to keep up with the flow of traffic is welcome to do so. :biggrin:

This is why bikes are narrow, and also why you're supposed to ride them a foot from the kerb!
 

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