Friday, April 03, 2009

Driving Laws Apply to Cyclists Too (gosh darnit)

Driving to work this morning, I nearly hit a bicyclist because he did not stop at the stop sign. I was puttering along minding my own business when my leg jumped over to the break and slammed down on it. My mind took a moment to realize that the reflex just saved some idiot's life.

Stop means stop. I know legislators are trying to pass the "Idaho" or "rolling" stop in Oregon, but cyclists have been doing that for years anyway. Why make it legal? If a cyclist claims they executed a rolling stop before I plow them down, now I'm liable for their stupidity. Great.

Wear a helmet. They're not that expensive. Consider it insurance. No, they don't block your view. No, they aren't that much warmer. Yes, you might get helmet hair, but wouldn't you rather look goofy than be dead? I haven't heard a single good excuse for not wearing a helmet while biking or skating (of any kind!).

If you're stopped at an intersection where I don't have to stop, don't expect me to stop. If you're walking your bike across an intersection, then I have to stop, but not if you're still on the saddle, bucko.

And what is it with bicyclists not signaling their turns? Left hand up means right turn. Left hand down means that you're stopping. Left hand out horizontally means left turn. Left hand with finger up nose means you are riding distracted (I saw that!). Please learn to signal correctly and do so at every turn or stop not just for a second, but until you complete the turn. It's helpful to drivers to know where you're intending to go.

Seriously, no bonus points for getting run over. I'd feel bad. You'd get an owwie. Not good.

1 comment:

Aaron said...

Actually, what the cyclist did would have been illegal in Idaho too.

All the law there does is allow cyclists to treat stop signs as yield signs. If there's any other traffic at or approaching the intersection, the CYCLIST must yield.

It's too bad so many cyclists do stupid things, and it's too bad there's so much misinformation out there about the "rolling stop" law.