View Single Post
Old February 2nd 19, 12:20 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
John B. Slocomb
external usenet poster
Posts: 805
Default AG: Lit Crit wanted

On Fri, 1 Feb 2019 11:26:51 -0000 (UTC), Duane wrote:

John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Thu, 31 Jan 2019 09:58:12 -0500, Duane

On 30/01/2019 6:16 p.m., John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Wed, 30 Jan 2019 11:23:19 -0000 (UTC), Duane

John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Tue, 29 Jan 2019 20:30:56 -0500, Frank Krygowski

On 1/29/2019 7:00 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Tue, 29 Jan 2019 14:05:11 -0500, Frank Krygowski

On 1/28/2019 3:21 AM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 23:17:31 -0500, Frank Krygowski

On 1/27/2019 8:09 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Sun, 27 Jan 2019 19:07:46 -0500, Frank Krygowski

On 1/27/2019 6:53 PM, John B. Slocomb wrote:
On Mon, 28 Jan 2019 06:16:36 +0700, John B. Slocomb

a great deal deleted

And every state that I have lived in, some ten states, has had a law
that "thou shall not impede" which is enforced to the extent that very
wide truck loads can often only be moved late at night with a police

The argument that "the cyclist can move left if the lane is too
narrow to safely share" just isn't logical in cases where motor
traffic is traveling at, say 60 - 70mph and the bicycle is traveling
at 12 - 18 mph. Particularly in dense traffic where there may be long
lines of cars traveling, say 25 - 50 yards apart. And, yes, those
conditions exist here, particularly on weekends.

I'm sure there are roads that are, practically speaking, unrideable. I
know that because I've ridden some of them. That road along a river I
mentioned was one.

You're saying that taking the lane just isn't logical if the traffic is
doing 60 mph. But if the lane is ten feet wide (which was about the
width of the road I mentioned) what would you do? Ride skimming the
concrete wall at your right and hope that all the motorists are going to
be super-careful and pass you with at least a foot or two of clearance,
AND that magically all the potholes will disappear as you approach them,
AND that the broken glass and gravel will float away before you?

It was a terrible road. Had I known, I would not have gotten onto it.
But once I was in that situation, my only hope was to take the lane, and
I did. Some drivers honked horns, but most did not. I was able to steer
around the potholes and ride away from the accumulated edge debris. I
survived until I could exit and find a better route.

What would you have done?

As for the "famous" 3 foot rule, I find it ridicules. Can you judge
distance accurately by eye? Three feet is 36 inches and I doubt that
anyone can accurately determine the difference between a 36 inch
(legal) distance and a 35 inch (illegal) distance. Yet another
unenforceable law passed to appease a special interest group.

Why stop at one inch resolution? Three feet is 914.4 mm. Obviously every
motorist passing at 914.3 will get a ticket, just like every motorist
driving 35.05 in a 35 zone. That's how it works, right? Um... not.

Like almost every law, police will not bother trying to perfectly
enforce it. Hopefully, they will enforce it more diligently from time to
time, partly as an education effort. And the law does give an opening
for education, which our bike club and others in our state have done.
There's a sign in my front yard right now, with a graphic image showing
a car passing a bike, and the words "3 FEET - IT'S THE LAW."

My point is "how will they measure the 3 feet?" By eye? Will they have
a special radar device? Will bicycles soon mount "whiskers sticking
out 3 feet on each side?

Or will the courts simply believe the testimony of the cyclist when he
says "He passed too close"?

Actually I doubt that as in the California trial about the guy that
attacked the MTB cyclists with a saw the court threw out the first
trial because the cyclists story weren't true.

There have been a few cities where bike cops mounted radar units to
measure passing clearance. I don't think that's going to be common, but
again, the publicity helps.

That is a device mounted on the bicycle. Who will pay for that? The
individual? Or the city/state? Will there be another ruling that "ALL

All traffic laws have been derided as silly at one time or other. All
are ignored at one time or other. But most of them do improve driver
behavior. Hopefully this one will do it, too.

The point wasn't that the law was silly. It was whether it could be
enforced and frankly I don't believe that it can be under present

John B.

One thing that it does is establish liability when the car hits the
cyclist. It?s less difficult to get your damages covered if the motorist
gets a ticket.

Well, yes! But isn't the mere fact that a car runs into a bicycle,
unless of course the bicycle was at fault, a crime? It is here
(although that isn't a real argument :-)

No. It's a crime if the motorist violates a law. Otherwise it's an
accident. In an accident liability can be shared.

Interesting. Here is you hit a bicycle and kill the rider it is
considered a crime.

Unfortunately, thatís not always the case here. I doubt itís even usually
the case.

I'm not sure what the exact terminology is, perhaps "causing a death",
but it isn't the same as murder although the penalty is a prison

John B.


Home - Home - Home - Home - Home