A bicyclist gets a ticket from Charlottesville officer L.A. Durrette on Market Street. The cyclist said she was charged with running a red light.
Good. They should have to obey the laws of the road just as motorist do. Working in the UVA area I can tell you that I see many violations by bikers and a lot of them are unsafe. It's nice to see the police paying attention.
bout time! get em durrette!
The cop shoppe needs to concentrate on pedestrians next, those who cross with a red "Don't Walk" signal.
Bicyclist want to share the road so they need to share the rules too. I find it very dangerous sharing some narrow roads in the area.
She looks as if something is funny. Wait 'til u ride off of the sidewalk into a large truck lady!
Silly waste of police resources. It's ridiculous that the same rules of the road should apply to cars and bicycles. The bicyclist is doing everyone a favor: She is not using up gasoline for short trips; she is not polluting the city's air; and she is reducing the number of cars on the road which makes things better for those who have to drive cars. By running a redlight she is only endangering herself. The police would do better to ticket drivers who are talking on cellphones.
le penseur, she is more than endangering herself. If I'm the one who kills her because she has disobeyed the rules, I will be devastated even if it is her own fault. Or if I have to swerve to miss her, I'm likely to hit another car or pedestrian. Plus she has no insurance to fix the damage to my car. Safety requires that everyone on the road be predictable in their actions.
Vivian, while everything you say is true it is highly unlikely that a bicyclist is going to run a redlight without looking both ways for approaching cars. The article doesn't make it clear whether such was the case in this instance. I still think it is silly for the rules to require a bicyclist to stand at a redlight until it turns green when there are no cars approaching the intersection. Because they are so vulnerable, bicyclists in traffic tend to be much more aware of their surroundings, than are drivers.
"he bicyclist is doing everyone a favor" this is the part that you have incorrect. she is doing what she wants, when she wants, thinking nothing of anyone else.
In response to the comment left by le penseur. You stated "It's ridiculous that the same rules of the road should apply to cars and bicycles." You may want to rethink that when a 10yr old child blasts into the intersection on their bike because they don't have to obey the same traffic laws as everyone else and you mow them down. IE: STOP signs mean just that STOP!
Endangering herself? Come on, do you honestly think that she's the only one in danger? What about the the driver of the other car that you swerve into to avoid hitting her, or the driver of the car behind you that slams into you because you suddenly slam on your brakes to avoid hitting the cyclist, or maybe injuring you as you hit that tree on the corner avoiding her. Granted the cyclist is doing wonders for our envrioment by reducing fuel comsumption and reducing air polution but is any of that really worth the loss of life that could result from cyclits not driving by the same rules as all motorists? One point I do agree on is ticketing drivers on cell phones, perticularly ones who are texting. Texting is against the law in VA but not talking on cell phones as of July 2010, there is no restriction on talking on a cell phone while driving for adult drivers. So ticketing an adult using a cell phone in VA is not going to happen.
I actually saw the ticket writing in action when I came to work Downtown this morning -- and I am very proud of this police officer. I travel from past PVCC to Downtown and back at least four days a week in rush hour traffic. I totally agree that bike riders should obey the rules of the road. They do extremely dangerous things. And this riding up so close to cars on places like Belmont Bridge is ridiculous -- why can't they get in line like the cars? One evening, a biker turned left at the Avon/Monticello light from the right lane across two lane of cars as the light turned green. I don't want to be the person who accidentally hits a careless biker or pedestrian so let's all obey the rules. THANK YOU, MR. DURRETTE
tod e, you don't have any idea what she is thinking. She may have been thinking something along the lines of, "No cars coming, I'll just go on across." When you are standing at a corner do you wait for the "Walk" light to come on before you cross if there are no cars coming?
P-Locks, I0 year olds will blast through intersections regardless of what the law says. That's why drivers have to be extra careful in areas frequented by children. Drivers should be extra careful anyway, especially in congested areas. I never suggested that bicyclists shouldn't have to stop at redlights; they just should not be required to wait for the light to turn green before proceeding if there is no traffic approaching.
As a daily bike commuter who is extremely frustrated with the general lack of lawful riding I observe, I've very happy to see this. I would love nothing more than to see a crackdown on traffic infractions across the board - cyclists, drivers & pedestrians.
The red-light running and stop-sign blowing cyclists do nothing to help the perceived image of cyclists (drivers tend to remember the cyclist that runs the red more readily than the one that stops and waits) and, if there was a greater chance that they'd get caught, I think the frequency would be greatly diminished.
Drivers will exceed the speed limit by 5-10 mph or roll through a right-turn-on-red because, in general, they can easily get away with it. The same thing applies to cyclists who cruise through stop signs and/or red lights.
Without increased enforcement, there won't be a marked change in the habits of road users who, in general (and in relation to the individual's assessment of the risk), only follow the rules of the road if there's a reasonable chance they'll be caught breaking the law or if their personal safety would be put in jeopardy.
Commuting cyclists are one thing but I HIGHLY object to the rude, uncaring and dangerous behaviour of the recreational cyclists who peddle along on the narrow county roads. These people are a menace to everyone.
On certain roads bicycles ought to be prohibited completely. IE: Old Lynchburg Rd, Rt 20 N&S, the entire Free Union/Earlysville area to name just a few.
It is highly unlikely that a bicyclist is going to run a red light without looking both ways for approaching cars????? I don't know where you live and drive, but it certinly isn't Charlottesville with a response like that!
I would like to add a comment now that is totally revelant in reference to this enforcement. If Officer Durette was driving his usual issued police vehicle, it's a very inconspicuous unmarked vehicle with dark tinted glass. And it's not even the usual unmarked Crown Victoria you might expect to see. The cyclist most likely had no idea she was violating the law right in front of a cop.
As a matter of fact, his issued city vehicle has probably already paid for itself three fold because nobody spots it as a police vehicle until the blue lights and siren go on!!
Do we all get to decide when to disregard a law? If you use the road you must obey the law (period). It is ok for me to proceed through a red light in a car after looking both ways? I can remember many times sitting at a red light at 1am waiting for green when there isn't a car in sight. Is it OK to go through? I guess no.
And the danger to only herself argument has no merit. Helmet Laws for motorcyclist, State seat belt laws and many more, all seek to protect individuals from themselves (another debate completely!) However when she gets run-over by a dump truck it is all about bicyclist rights and how people in cars need to share the road.
Gasbag Self Ordained Expert, have there been a lot of accidents in Charlottesville involving bicyclists running redlights lately? If so then I am wrong and will agree that it's a good law and rigorous enforcement is necessary.
Le_Dumasse, you missed the point. No, the laws must be enforced, even the silly ones. Officer Durrette did a good job. I am questioning whether it is useful to require bicyclists, by law, to sit at a redlight until it turns green if there is no traffic. That doesn't make sense to me. Now that you mention it, it doesn't make sense for cars to have to remain stopped either. I'd be in favor of changing that law too.
About time they start giving them Tickets, They should have to buy Insurance, Get a drivers Licence, and Buy Tags for there bikes, to ride on the roads that are paid for by these fees. About 90% of these bikers are going no where, just exercising and dressing like a clown. And I havent meet one of them without a ATTIDUDE, Have you ever seen a bike with a purchase from a store, or see them eating at a Resturant, They are not going to work; I think I will move my exercise machine out to the middle of Route 29. Cops should pay more attention and give more of them Tickets, They dont obey the cross walk rules in Charlottesville,Va either.
I agree that the cyclist should be ticked. However I also find that being annoyed at waiting for a cyclist(s) on the back roads is somewhat absurd. You mean those 20 seconds it takes to wait are ruining your day? Finally, realize that most cyclists are also tax paying citizens that DRIVE and contribute to the roads as much as you do. What have you got against people exercising? I hate rude and arrogant cyclists as much as the next guy but give me a break, some people react to them like they are robbing their grandmother when all they are doing is inconveniencing you for 30 seconds. Be the bigger person and make sure you recognize not all cyclists are rude, just some of them.
Le Penseur? Are you kidding? Have there been many accidents in the area involving cyclists running red lights? YES. I was there when a kid got hit (and almost died) because he didn't stop at a red. I bike all over the place and I expect to share the road, but I share the rules too. It's people like this lady (whom I actually believe you to be based on your persistent defense of her actions) who end up getting killed because they're too impatient to spend the extra minute or so at a light.
The officer was doing his duty, enforcing the traffic laws. I hope they ticket all those people that ride bikes unsafely.
Taken straight from DMV's website: Bicycles are subject to the same laws as motor vehicles.
So if you ride a bike and want to share the road with cars you have to follow the same laws. If you don't like the law then get it changed. Quit whining about the police doing their job. One lousy ticket to a violator riding a bike shown in the newspaper and you'd think it was open season on bike riders. When you take the same responsibility driving down the road as a motor vehicle come back and talk to me. Otherwise grow up!
Are we trotting out that old "make cyclists pay for the roads" saw again? Most cyclists, such as myself, also own cars, pay registration fees, insurance, and taxes. Resentment against cyclists because they are somehow freeloading off the roads that motorists pay for is ridiculous.
Secondly, Randy, are you seriously suggesting that bicycling is not legitimate unless the rider is planning to spend money or transact business somewhere? Should motorists, since they are causing pollution, also have to prove that their travel is serving the economy in some way? Isn't this a free country?
As for the cyclist who got a ticket, she may have deserved it, I have no idea. I do know that there is nothing illegal about a cyclist in a bike lane passing cars that are stopped at a light. In some cities, such as New York, there is even a painted box at the head of the line at intersections, specifically for bicycles. This is not to say that it's OK to run a red light. But instead of feeling resentful of someone on a bike who gets to the head of the traffic line at an intersection, feel grateful that they're not in another car in front of you.
No, Christina, I'm a middle-aged male. My bike riding days are long past. In my experience motorists are even worse now (more aggressive and reckless) than they were back then, so maybe you are right. There is a lot of anger on the roadways. I was ticketed once for running two red lights at consecutive intersections on a bike back in my college days. There was no danger to anyone. I saw the way was clear and rode on through. Didn't think anything about it then and don't think anything about it now. Went to court and was fined $25.00 for running one light. The judge obviously thought it was stupid too, but he felt he had to do something. The only misadventure I ever had involving a car occurred when a driver pulled out of a sidestreet, after stopping at the stopsign, into my path. She was looking right at me as she pulled into the intersection. My front wheel hit her front left quarterpanel and I flipped over my handlebars onto the hood of her car and rolled off the other side to the asphalt. It was quite spectacular but no blood was shed. My bike was never the same. I will always defend the bicyclist. They are doing the right thing. Most people shouldn't be allowed behind the wheel of a car.
Once I start obeying every single ticky-tacky traffic signal, I'll start taking up the whole lane and cars will be very happy to be behind me going 10 MPH.
Look, when you're on a bike, you can see a heckuva lot more. You can usually see if there's no traffic coming at a red light. If you can't see, then you're suicidal to proceed--cyclist's choice. I hate waiting at a red light knowing cars are lining up and will eventually pass me sometimes at close proximity. I'd rather blow a red light and get some space between myself and cars.
Also, it sucks to get in rhythm and then have a stupid traffic light turn on you. It's soul-crushing and takes away from the beauty of life.
I also drive a car, pay my taxes, ride to work (which generates payroll taxes), and know to obey laws in a car. There's a lot more at risk driving a car, which is why it's essential that cars follow signals. Driving a car is way, way different than riding a bike.
Bikes and cars are fundamentally different things/ideas/concepts/fuzzy bunnies. To think that the same rules of the road are the best for both is insane--sort of like a doctor diagnosing cancer using generally accepted accounting principles.
Also, a person on a bicycle is not heavy enough to cause the traffic light to change, at those lights that have the device that changes the light when it senses a car waiting. Early in the morning, when there are no cars near me to force the light to change, I am forced to go through the red light. It's completely stupid to stand there helplessly and wait for a car to come along.
cyclist, it sucks to get in rhythm and then have a stupid traffic light turn on you? It's soul-crushing and takes away from the beauty of life?
Yeah, I agree. And while I am driving a 8,000 pound SUV, it's even worse! Just when I get rolling along good, I have to slow down or stop for somebody on a bicycle that has chosen not to follow The rules Of The Road, or some pedestrian who has totally ignored their "Don't Walk" signal. There's been several times when I almost haven't been able to stop a 8,000 pound vehicle on a dime.
Yeah, sounds like a real inconvenience Gasbag. You have to push down on the brake pedal and then push down all over again on the accelerator pedal. How do you do it?
Yes, while the cyclist here and everywhere are trying to save the earths resources and money by not buying gas, we are to share the road and abide by the laws. I am surprised by the picture with this article as the woman pictured will get points on her driving license and may, because of this moving violation on her bicycle, pay more on her vehicle insurance. And yes, the cville police seem to delight in giving tickets to cyclist as do the judges here in town. Don't waste your time trying to fight any ticket received by a cville police officer as they are never wrong and our local judges love to chastise cyclist........
She should have been ticketed for wearing Tevas outside of a whitewater rafting scenario.
I think it is pretty absurd that tickets received on a bike affect your drivers license. So, if you cost through enough stop signs on a bike, you are no longer legally allowed to drive a car?
I have seen some interesting things while driving downtown but yesterday was a first. A male on a bicycle cycling in the oncoming traffic lane causing all the cars to swerve (the bike lane was on the other side by me) and then hopping up on the sidewalk. There is an ordinance in Ch'vlle that makes it illegal to ride your bike on the sidewalk.
If you use the roads and brake the law You should pay the price. I hope next the bikers will have to have state inspections, personal property taxes, and a license plates. Since they want to share the road it would be nice if they shared the cost.
That's a pretty weak and flawed argument. If they live in the city, they pay property taxes. I would also assume the majority of bikers also own motor vehicles. I bike around town occasionally and I also own 3 vehicles for which I have to pay taxes/registration.
In fact, I would argue bikers should get a personal property tax break on their motorized vehicles. Bikes cause much less wear to the road compared to cars, take up less space on the roads and reduce congestion. Why should bikers have to pay the same auto-related tax rates as those who solely drive? If you like unfair taxation, go back up north, BB.
I'am probably more southern then you. My little boy.
Joe, why should traffic convictions on a bicycle not affect a driver's license? If a person does pretty stupid things on a bicycle, they most likely do in vehicles as well.
I like the arguments about personal property taxes though, it's gotten me to thinking out loud. Since I currently own 8 automobiles, I think I should get a multi-vehicle discount. I can't drive all eight cars on the public highways at the same time. I also should be allowed to buy just one set of license plates and use them on whatever vehicle I am driving at the time. And I shouldn't have to pay insurance on 8 vehicles since I am only driving one at a time. Maybe if I buy myself a bicycle I can get in line for discounts of some type.
These comments for the most part are ridiculously anti-bike and why it's such a joke that City Council is trying to promote Charlottesville as a bike city. It's impossible to be a bike city when drivers are so antagonistic to bike riders. I commuted on my bike in DC for 6 years and within a couple of months of trying that in Charlottesville I gave up because the drivers are completely aggressive against bikes. It's very dangerous to ride a bike here. There has to be a fundamental change to live and let live.
FYI - bikers don't share the road. They are pushed over into the gutters.
In response to the comment left by "Patience" regarding a bicycle not being heavy enough to trigger the light causing you to wait. Most motorcycles, especially sports bikes, have that exact same problem. In your view does that give me the right to ride my motorcycle through a red light? I'm not saying ban bicycles like a lot of folks, but they should obey the laws of the road like all other vehicles. I'm sorry but you being inconvenienced does not put you above the law..
Kosmo is right, I've stopped biking around here because the drivers give no leeway and it makes it very dangerous to ride. It's a shame drivers can't take 10 seconds to slow down to pass a bike rider safely, especially out in the boonies where there is very little traffic. So much for a charming tolerant city.
Love the hypocrisy in the back and forth. People want bicycles to obey the rules of the road when it's convenient for them. "Rude cyclists should have to obey traffic laws, but let's also ban them from using certain roads! You should stop at stop signs but you have to ride in bike lanes!"
Everyone likes seeing bicyclists getting tickets for running red lights, but how you lay on your horn when one takes up a lane on Main St.
There are a lot of cyclists who ride on sidewalks, run red lights, go the wrong way down streets because they're incompetent, but the bottom line is that when your riding a bike you have to be more aggressive. And these behaviors are symptoms of a system being bent to accomplish something it wasn't meant to do: accommodate two entirely different forms of transportation.
We can paint bike lanes, and put up Share The Road signs, pass hasty helmet laws and pat each other on the back all we want, but these behaviors will continue until we address the overlying issues of road use. Until then expect to see more of the same.
If you want equality in road use then you have to actually promote that equality both ways and not just for your 8,000 pound substitute for...Cyclists should be able to ride in car lanes (bike lanes are death traps) and there needs to be a way for bikes to trigger stop lights. Anyone caught riding on sidewalks should be flogged, and any driver caught harassing, tailgating, and running down cyclists should be tarred and feathered, then be forced to drive a hot pink smart car for a year.
deleted by moderator
The reality about the ticket givers is this: All across the states, cops now are giving out tickets at the drop of a hat that includes way laying drivers, etc., at enormous, in some cases almost unbelievable outragous fines...this to build up their coffers.
One time I was driving down Locust Avenue and there was this middle aged guy on a bicycle sticking way too far out into the road, making it so that none of us cars had enough room to get around him because we'd wind up in the other lane and into oncoming traffic. So traffic was backed up, like, ten or more of us cars, stuck behind this clown as his chubby legs vigorously pumped up and down, obliviously peddling away halfway out in the road.
This guy rides regularly down Locust, after 5 pm, so I take it he's commuting. And it wasn't the first time he's caused cars to be backed up behind him as tries to heave ho himself down the road on his bike. But that was probably the worst example, because there was so much oncoming traffic that none of us were able to get around him. And he couldn't have cared less either. Totally oblivious to what was going on behind him. So if he's reading this.........take note. Don't act like a clown. Get yourself over to the side. I'm so so so tired of rude, oblivious people getting in others' ways.
Rant for the day.
Oh yeah, and as a note to my previous post - it was the *way* this guy rides his bike that makes him so obnoxious. He bends his knees further out than normal people who ride, so when his legs pump up and down it's more noticeable than a streamlined cyclist. It's like, "UP AND DOWN! UP AND DOWN! I'M RIDING MY BIKE HALFWAY OUT INTO LOCUST AVENUE! UP AND DOWN! UP AND DOWN!"
Kudos to Sgt. Durrette. I respect bicyclist and give them leeway, but they ride like idiots. When they slam into a car, it is always the car's fault. They need to obey the same traffic laws cars do, if they expect the same right of ways and what not. Thank you Sgt. Durrette for enforcing the laws of the Commonwealth. Bet you would never expect someone with my name to thank the police. First time for everything I guess.
ok folks really we are kicking bikers around.....lets look at some bigger issues!! how about all these people (kids) driving scooters around. in and out of traffic, not paying anything and blocking the road for car traffic. i respect the people on bikes riding teh same roads as the cars who ride close make turns in front of them and generally say I'm bigger than you.. should they stop at all lights and stop sign yes. should they obey traffic laws yes. but give them credit for help gas and the pollution..Oh before you start complaining about this starting July 1 motorcycle can go through a red light after sitting through cycle because it is not tripping the censor...in closing dont judge until you have riden a mile on their bike..
What's wrong with thanking the police? Every day I thank the Charlottesville Police Department, the Albemarle County Police Department, and the Alexandria Police Department for everything they have done for me! :)
I am happy to share the road with bicyclists, however they have to share the rules. It's not a matter of them "getting ahead" of me in the UVA area at 5pm. It's that they ARE putting others at danger and DO NOT CARE. They have chosen to be more vulnerable, for whatever reason - recreation, environmental awareness, etc.
I am the kind of person who will wait at a crosswalk until the light tells me I can walk...because it's more safe that way. I never blow a stop sign or red light just because it's 2am, because it's more safe that way. If I can think in terms of safety while in a Civic, why can't a bicyclist do the same when they have no protection?
And as for the bicyclists on the country roads, I take a country road home every single day, along the 53. I pass Michie Tavern, Monticello, and Ash Lawn. Those are some curvy, narrow roads along deep ditches and steep drops. It's not "20 seconds" that I have to wait...it can be much longer because I don't want to pass until I can drive a WIDE circle around a bicyclist, and I can't do that until there's a straight road. People FLY down those roads - not always on their own side. There is no NEED to bike along those roads, so why put themselves in danger? Why put me in danger in case one of those people come flying down the middle of the road while I'm trying to pass?
I'm an extremely careful driver when it comes to bikers and bicyclists. If I know one is in my vicinity, my senses are heightened and I keep an eye on them.
I simply wish they cared about their own safety as much as I do.
A year or so ago, right after the Tour de France (!) I was driving toward town on Reas Ford Road, approaching the bridge over the Rivanna. As I get on the bridge a clump of about 20 bicycles comes from the other side. They were riding three abrest. One, who didn't seem content to stay in the pack crossed the center line right in front of me. What was I supposed to do, hit a cyclist or a concrete bridge rail? Luckily, the IDIOT got over in time. This happens all too often on the country roads and they don't care, because who is going to catch them? Obviously, they think the cars are supposed to watch out for them, and we do, but there are times when they leave us very little alternative. Hostile towards bikers? How about being afraid that one day I will hit one of them who is being unsafe?
Accidents happen and they always will, no matter how careful you are. Some people do stupid things. If you worry about stuff like that maybe you need a little therapy.
...not wanting to harm/kill myself or another person means I need therapy? Being extra cautious around bicyclists means I need therapy? Silly me, I thought that's what bicyclists wanted from us. Guess I'll stop. :) I mean, accidents happen. I'm sure the judge will feel the same way when I use that argument.
Being afraid that one day you will hit one of them who is being unsafe (That is what you said.)is why you might want to get a little help. Being extra cautious is a good thing; no therapy needed for that. Not wanting to harm/kill yourself or another person is perfectly normal. If you are in an accident that is not your fault you have nothing to fear from a judge. Why aren't you complaining about those people driving trucks and cars who "FLY down those roads - not always on their own side"? They could kill you while you are being extra-cautious and obeying all the rules.
I find it hilarious and pathetic that you keep reverting to the state of my mental health when know little more about me than my first name. Find a different argument - your ignorance is showing.
I do complain/worry about the people who fly down the country roads here. It doesn't stop me from going to work every day (which is the kind of thing that would warrant psychiatric attention). But it's easier to prove who was being irresponsible when it's two vehicles. When it's a vehicle and a bike, the favor begins on the cyclist's side. I've been working in insurance for years...I see the outcome of these cases. Very, very rarely does a motorist get the benefit of the doubt in motorist vs. cyclist (or pedestrian) cases.
Here's the bottom line, as far as I'm concerned: Bravo to Durette for issuing the ticket. Shame on the cyclist for laughing as if it's not an issue to be taken seriously.
Have fun, kids.
I'm not arguing with you. I'm not even questioning your mental health, although you do seem to do a lot of worrying to little effect. I am just suggesting that you are not thinking clearly. For that I don't need to know anything about you beyond what you have written. Maybe all you need to do is slow down and take a deep breath. If a cyclist crosses the centerline, as you stated, and you hit them (especially with nearly 20 witnesses) there would be no doubt for you to need the benefit of. Maybe you should move closer to your place of employment so you could walk to work, or ride the bus.
Times have changed. When I was taught to ride bikes, we rode with the traffic flow and followed the same laws as all the other traffic (pedestrian, cycles, autos). What happened?
With bike lanes, biking is no longer cheap for the community. Extra pavement, extra lines, extra monitoring, less parking. The environment is not as healthy with all of these changes - and with the added cost who pays?.
The speed limit in most of Charlottesville is 25-35 mph, a speed which a bike can travel (cycles and scooters do).
Pedestrians have to wait for the light if there is one at the intersection, they cannot "trip it".
If everyone obeys the law, what is the problem in Charlottesville? Pedestrians, bikes, motorized vehicles - if all follow the law we are okay. (Albemarle county is a different situation).
I'm not sure if there are any real eco benefits to bicycling....I mean sure maybe the bike isn't putting out any pollution itself BUT what about the dozens of car piled up behind the slow moving biker ? I'd say there is often net GAIN in the amount of pollution because of bikes....
Personally I have no problems with bikes (Heck I own a bunch of them and some are even motorized !) BUT ultimately I think they shouldn't get in the way of cars AT ALL.....(no slowing us down on windy roads etc....)
Just curious BUT why is it we should have to share the road with bikes in the first place (I mean other than it's the law) BUT why?
A biker that is holding up traffic would do well to pull over and let the cars go by. That is just common sense.
I agree w/ you le penseur. However, I think too much oxygen is being diverted to the bikers leg muscles rather to their brain for them to think....
Compared to motor vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists have a slower top speed, generally operate over shorter overall distances, and are also more vulnerable in the event of a collision.
Consequently, laws are in place protecting both the health of peds/bicyclists, as well as the need (right?) of these same people to transport themselves across the earth's surface (using the tranpsort mode that the can afford, or prefer I suppose).
Personally I support obey these laws, of course applied with a layer of common sense on either side of the car/bike divide.
My request: before an automobile driver complains about the short delay caused by a commuting (or recreational cyclist), they should think about how long it'll take for them to "make up their lost time"....I personally think the same argument applies to giving the right of way to a ped in a cross walk (ones without green/red walk lights)... Of course I'd also ask the same person to think about the safety of not only other drivers, but pedestrians and bicyclists as well that could be affected by their behavior/attitude.
I personally like crosswalks, bike lanes, 25mph streets, sidewalk access (along streets and God forbid into and across car parking lots), because I think it improves the quality of life for everyone, note just those that must (or choose to) cover short distances on foot or with a bike rather a car.
Maybe these people just like the fresh air or increased chance for social interaction, maybe they're cheap and don't want to incur cost of buying, insuring (BTW i recommend that bikers carry personal liability insurance), fueling, maintaining a motor vehicle, or maybe they think it helps local and global air quality, or maybe it's all of the above...
...I just ask you to please recognize/don't forget what I believe to be some pretty basic rights/needs of people to "get around".
Officer Durrette was on his motorcycle which is why he has his boots on. So I wouldn't say he was "hiding" out in a unmarked vehicle.
Zombie, I don't honestly know what Tito was driving on this day. But the boots mean nothing. I have seen him wearing his boots while driving his unmarked car on numerous occasions.
Furthermore, Tito doesn't have to "hide" anywhere in his new unmarked car, the car does all the work for him! Whether we agree with it or not, and as far as generating income, Tito's car is probably the best investment Chief Longo has made in a long time.
There's another new unmarked car working radar a lot in the city now too. But it's the typical white unmarked Crown Victoria police car, you can spot it from a mile away.
perhaps she recklessly ran the light on her bike, nearly causing an accident.
As a cyclist I am happy to see the laws being enforced. Those cyclists that don't abide that laws give us a bad reputation and are a hazard to pedestrians, drivers, AND other cyclists.
For booo! Taking the lane on Locust is the safest way to bike on it. It's too narrow to share with a car, so you just need to learn to be patient. It's really not that hard.
For all you who complain about cyclists on narrow county roads, I suggest you contact your representatives about having them widened. And also learn to be patient. Again, it's really not that hard.
Learn to be patient? Ya see, there's the attitude!...... "I am riding up this hill on this 45 mph curve and I am doing the best I can to do 7 mph, learn to be patient."
In the meantime another car comes into the blind curve at 45 mph and doesn't realize I have basically been forced to pretty much stop in the roadway by a bicycle going 7 mph.
I was interested to read the article about cars being towed. I drove to C’Ville from Pennsylvania; on Friday, June 17, 2011. My car was towed BEFORE the time was expired from a lot on 1st and Market streets.
We called the towing company and were told there was no ticket in the car .We called back to dispute this and were then told the ticket was found lodged UNDER a tissue box on the floor on the other side of the car. We called the police who met us at the towing yard. We took pictures and made it clear we would return to go to civil court, and that we would charge for our return expenses to appear in court. The ticket was voided and we did not have to pay to get our car back. We passed the parking lot on 1st and Market where our car had been towed from and a car with New York plates was being towed. Interesting! Be warned! Call the police!! Thank you Officer Howard for your professionalism!
Luke-It's not the amount of time it takes to find a place to get around the cyclists, it's the fact that even if I'm going the speed limit around a curve, I could come around the curve and there be cyclists in the middle of my lane. No one is really disoberying the law, but it would be very easy for me or someone else to run into a cyclist because of the small size of the roads. Especially out in the country where I live. It's nothing to pop a hill or come around a curve and there be a gaggle of cyclists in the road and I've had to slam on my brakes many times for that situation. I think it's great if they want to get the exercise or whatever they're doing, however, the intent of the highways and roads are to provide service to motorized vehicles and even if I'm obeying all the rules of the road, the cyclists could cause a problem by just not being seem and there being no way to be seen in those situations. They need to go somewhere they can see other motorists or riders and where THEY can be seen.
le penseur: Next time you're wondering why motorists don't like cyclists, take a nice long look in the mirror.
:chuckle: You paint a pretty picture, Gasbag. What I don't get is why the vast majority of my encounters with cars are neutral or positive -- even when they get delayed a little -- yet you seem to be incapable of figuring out how to drive? Seriously. It's you. And the idiot in the blue Honda with the SOCA sticker. He doesn't get it either.
Karen- "I've had to slam on my brakes many times for that situation."
Does it not cross your mind that you need to modify your driving behaviour?
Seriously, people. It's like you all get behind the wheel and suddenly forget how to use your brains...
anything to discourage bicycling, right?
Are we trotting out that old "make cyclists pay for the roads" saw again?
Evidently, once again, the moronic belief that cars are the only vehicles permitted on public thoroughfares comes up endlessly...basically from people who are searching for an excuse to keep bikes off the road.
The roads are NOT paid for with registration, license or insurance fees. The roads are paid for with property taxes, sales taxes and income taxes. None of which are particularly correlated with motor vehicles.
Still: how they are paid for is irrelevant: these are public thoroughfares and are accessible to motor vehicles, self-propelled vehicles, animals or pedestrians.
As a bicycle commuter and a driver I am glad they are starting to ticket people - it is important for bikes to follow the same rules, particularly with stop signs and traffic lights. I do wish they'd have the same kind of enforcement against motor vehicle drivers who do equally dangerous things with their cell phones.
Pedaleur, I have had an absolutely spotless driving record my entire life. As I tell people repeatedly, I've never even had so much as a parking ticket. I have always been able to avoid the killing and maiming of cyclists and pedestrians that find themselves in front of my motorized vehicles. (The pedestrian encounters ALWAYS involve them paying no attention whatsoever to Don't Walk signal devices.)
Above I was actually speaking of a traffic accident that happened two nights ago. One of my nephews came upon a bicycle on a curve on Old Lynghburg Road. He was doing the speed limit and the bicycle was in his lane doing much much less. My nephew laid on the brakes, swerved, lost control and ended up ditching his vehicle. He was lucky in not being killed when the vehicle flipped and the roof caved in. All because some nut is riding a self propelled low speed bicycle on a public highway.
If my nephew had been doing 7 or 8 mph in his vehicle and a car ran into the back of him in this same curve, my nephew would be charged with obstructing traffic. Funny how this law does not apply to slow moving bicycles.
With each smug comment you make, I am losing more respect for bicyclists.
"... on a public highway."
That kind of ends the discussion right there, doesn't it? It's a public highway, and you have the duty to drive responsibly. As tough a lesson as it is for your nephew (no, I don't wish bad on anybody), he needs to learn to drive within his vision and his control. (Given the number of speed warning signs, I also doubt the veracity of his/your version of events, but that's another matter.)
You can go on and on all you want about my smugness -- though someone who uses "Gasbag Self Ordained Expert" as a moniker should first cast a glance in the mirror. Take a bike ride with me some day, and you'll quickly understand the grossly overplayed image of the "arrogant cyclist."
1 - Yes, public highway, unfortunately. And the various forms of government do not protect cyclists on these public highways. They tell me I must wear a seat belt in a 8,000 pound hunk of solid metal, but a cyclist can pedal along 5 to 8 mph in a 55 mph zone with blind curves. Explain the logic here to me please.
2 - The moniker is what a person used to call me here. So I adopted it, I did not create it.
3- There is no such thing as driving within one's vision and control when a person comes across a cyclist doing 7 mph in a blind curve in a 45 or 55 mph speed zone. I am surprised more cyclists don't get run over and killed.
4- My nephew is OK. He'll be OK. But had he not swerved and killed the cyclist I think he would have been cleared of any wrong doing by the investigating officers or the judge/jury. Why? See #3 above.
5 - No thanks on the ride-along. I value my legs, feet and life too much. There's a time and place for bicycles. And tangling with 3,000 to 10,000+ pound motor vehicles is not the place in my humble opinion. Especially in rural areas where there are blind curves and 45 to 55 mph speed limits.
1- If you are driving within your means, there is no such thing as a blind curve.
3- See #1. Cycling is actually a very safe form of transportation. Riskier than driving, but not by a whole lot. The side-benefits greatly outweigh the risks, in my self-ordained expert opinion.
4- Possibly. In the cycling world we call this the "Single Witness Suicide Swerve" defense, which is used as a Get Out of Jail Free card for drivers in such cases. Still, it can be hard to get out of fault in a rear end collision, however anti-cyclist the judge/jury may be, and I'd like to hear the cyclist's take on the matter before I pass judgement. In any event, _your nephew should be commended for "taking one for the team," regardless of fault_.
5- See #1 and #3. The risk is not really that high, but it can be a lot of fun. It's a shame that we've become a Bubble Wrap society that cowers in fear in the corner instead of getting out and enjoying ourselves. Cycling would probably be a great activity for many people. If my experience means anything, it would make people better drivers, as well, in the same way that learning a foreign language makes one better at English.
Food for thought: an interesting talk on cycling, cars, helmets, risks, etc.:
@GSOE - I doubt you'll fill in the specifics - wouldn't want to post any incriminating details - but very little of Old Lynchburg Road - even all the way out to Plank Rd - is marked as even as high as 55mph. Many sections, though they have fun, tempting-to-go-fast-on curves, are clearly not suitable for the top posted speed, unless you're really skilled.
If your nephew is traveling at speeds where he can't successfully execute an emergency safety stop for some obstruction ahead of him in the road: slow moving cyclist, farm tractor or fallen tree - it really doesn't matter - then he needs to slow down or learn how to drive. That's reckless driving, period:
"§ 46.2-861. Driving too fast for highway and traffic conditions.
A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who exceeds a reasonable speed under the circumstances and traffic conditions existing at the time, regardless of any posted speed limit. "
I'm sure as a LEO you've written more than one of those for yahoo behavior, now, haven't you?
I call BS on your just-so story. I think it sounds like yet another not-paying-attention teenager driving way too hot for his not-so-great mad-skillz. It has nothing to do with cyclists. I've been biking on that road since the 70s and I've also had the same kind of chuckle-headed punks do dumb stuff like that when I've run a tractor down that road and on 20S. I've also been a chuckle-headed young punk, so I know whereof I speak. Sorry your nephew trashed his car, glad he's not hurt, and hopefully he'll learn his lesson and drive more safely (within his personal margin of error) in the future.
"I'm sure as a LEO you've written more than one of those for yahoo behavior, now, haven't you?"
Waitaminute, waitaminute, waitaminute. GSOE is an LEO?
Scott, traffic enforcement was never one of my primary duties while working in the city. I am glad you mentioned it though. Because one ticket I did write ties right into this subject, I wrote a summons for reckless driving in front of Rugby McIntyre Apartments on the "blind curve" when a motorist passed me in my unmarked car. Had there been a cyclist in the other lane he would have been hit headon by this car that was passing me.
Even while working my last few years in the profession as an auxiliary deputy at Greene County, I never subscribed to the theory that "law enforcement" consisted of sitting in crossovers and writing speeding tickets all night long. As a matter of fact, several of the full time and several of the auxiliary deputies competed with one another to see who could write more tickets per shift. There was plenty of traffic enforcement without me even considering it.
@GSOE - Well, it was a reasonable if wrong guess. I'm glad you wrote the ticket for the fool passing on Rugby...that's a double yellow, and has been forever. I can't imagine why anyone would legitimately pass there, unless the road were obstructed altogether. Were you moving at the time or stopped in the lane? There are a lot of bikers, runners, walkers, etc. there at all hours.
There may be a lot of officers writing tickets hand over fist, but I personally wouldn't mind seeing more done around the university and downtown. I know someone who got popped on a crosswalk 'sting' right by the Mkt St. parking garage a couple of years ago. I don't really know whether or not pedestrians can be tickets for ignoring pedestrian signals. That would be a fantastic win. There is too much focus on drivers only (for the good reason they are the 2000lb gorilla) - we need to put some teeth behind having everyone follow the rules.
Full Disclosure: I got popped by a UVa officer for running a red light on a bicycle - they let me go with a warning, but the flashing lights (first time I've been pulled over in 22 years!) got the message through.
I was headed to University Ave from Preston Avenue. I had slowed to about 15 mph as I came into the curve. The knucklehead behind did not like this and passed me. I was driving an unmarked 1972 Plymouth Gran Fury, so this had to have been at least 35 years ago. I don't even recall what the judge did with the charge. Most likely reduced it to improper driving. But the point remains, if there had been cyclists in the other lane there is no way on God's Green Earth he could have avoided hitting them. His being in the wrong lane at the time truly makes this one of those "blind curves" Pedaluer claims doesn't exist.
Wait. This is your definition of a blind curve? And this is your rationale for removing cyclists from public roads?
This is such a bizarre argument I can't possibly reply without sounding outrageously smug.
Enjoy your day. Please drive safely, everyone!
Oops! Cycle safely, too!
I almost forgot: to the cyclist in the original picture, if you're going to wear a helmet, you need to adjust it properly. Having it tilted back on your head like that greatly reduced its effectiveness. You should be able to see easily the brim of the helmet when fitted properly.
Lucid, sorry not to get back to you; I've been away from my computer. As I stated in an earlier post, I am not a cyclist. Haven't ridden a bike in thirty years or so, in part because it got to be too dangerous for my liking; so I never wonder "why motorists don't like cyclists". But thanks for the tip. If I ever do wonder about such a thing I'll just go look at myself in the mirror for awhile, since it apparently works for you.
Umm, GBSOE, you talked about the slow cyclists. There is actually no speed minimum on most roads. Some guy might be carrying a honeymooning couple in a horse-drawn carriage...doesn't mean some other guy is encouraged to hit them as long as he doesn't exceed the speed limit. Cyclists stay at a necessarily low speed and must try to be as safe as possible. Car drivers may stay at a higher speed, but likewise are not discharged from the duty to not rear-end slow-moving or completely stopped people. Sometimes the edge of a road is covered in potholes or broken glass, and they MUST move farther into the lane. That may be an inconvenience to you or your relative who thinks that they should be allowed to drive the speed limit around a blind curve (because of course there could NEVER be a fallen tree or rock, or bear, or child who crashed his bicycle lying in the roadway). Maybe this possibility makes you "lose respect for cyclists", but it doesn't mean you have to recklessly take your frustration out behind the wheel.