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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
    Posts
    4,083

    yield, ye miscreant!

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    I started thinking about this today, after a couple of encounters that were slightly too close for comfort.

    A lot of my commute is on a bike path, but I still have to deal with busy roads and city traffic. I try to be visible and ride decisively with clear signals, and use my right of way when appropriate. Not least because riding like a car gives the signal that I expect to be treated like one as well. But I still try to ride so that if someone doesn't yield when they should, I won't end up under half a ton of steel... That can sometimes be a fine line to draw.

    I often experience the opposite too - in situations where I'm supposed to yield and am already slowing down, a crossing driver will slow down to a stop and presumably want me to pass first. I don't know why, maybe because drivers often experience kamikaze cyclists who don't respect traffic rules at all, or maybe they're unsure of the rules when, for example, a bike path crosses a road, but whatever the reason it's a little confusing. Geonz wrote once about perfecting the "pre-emptory wave", which means "No, YOU first!" This is great if you can time it right, but too often I forget about it or am too busy braking, and we just end up hovering at each other. It's not easy to see a driver waving you on when it's dark and wet out.

    So does anybody else feel they often have to or should yield when they have the right of way, or conversely are given the right of way when they're supposed to be yielding?
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,143
    All the time. In the car, too. For some perverse reason, drivers in MA think that the person driving (or riding) on the straight road, with the right of way, should slow down and stop for those turning and/or entering. Perhaps it's done in guise of being polite, to let one person in a line of traffic, but it makes for some *very* confusing situations. I usually try to stand my ground and if I am the one being waved on, I stop, unless the coast is really clear. People, in general, don't know what to do at intersections or merges. Four way stops, forget it. If one car is stopped at a 4 way stop sign intersection around here, he or she generally *waits* until all cars approaching are at the sign and stopped and then there is a guessing game as to who goes first. Quite dangerous. I am not sure what happened to "the one who arrives at the sign first, goes first rule" I learned in Florida and Arizona. It seemed to work fine there.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    where the wind comes sweeping down the plain
    Posts
    5,269
    I agree that it's difficult to see a person in a car waving you on. That happens fairly often around here- a car will wave you by/through even if you don't have the right of way. Since I pretend to be a car on my bike- that's confusing to me. Sometimes I wave them through and they wave me and we both go at the same time. huh? ooops?
    I think it's just people being kind, but it's still confusing nonetheless. I almost always assume the car will not stop nor see me and am always in preemptive strike mode- ready to be clobbered at any time.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    3,213
    A subject near and dear to my heart, and closer still to my ribs, skull, and persistant thigh dent; alas the cause of my crash in September.

    I don't know why that driver didn't just GO. It was his turn and everything, and if it isn't my right of way (and even if it is) I'd rather be BEHIND the car than in front of it.

    He did finally go, after I and my bike were a small pile on the street.
    *eye roll*

    I was almost all better...until I got the flu.
    Now I am like an ancient woman: out of breath, hunched, tired, and can't keep my pants up.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Black Hills of SD
    Posts
    700
    A whole line of cars stopped at the bike crossing today. My chain had slipped off, so I moved back and sideways so it was obvious I wasn't crossing any time soon. I wrestled with the chain (in claw mittens), looked up and saw the line of stopped cars. On a good day, nobody would have stopped. Go figure.

    Deb

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Columbia, MO
    Posts
    2,051
    You said it, the problem is many drivers don't know what to do. Most of them do the right thing (around me anyway). But some either go when they shouldn't, which offends us and is dangerous, or yield to me when they shouldn't, waving me ahead of them at intersections and such. I find both behaviors equally frustrating. I know in the latter case they are trying to be nice, but it is confusing and dangerous.

    I know that the bicycle advocacy group here has been pushing the "Let's Roll Together" presentation so that drivers WILL know what they are supposed to do around cyclists.

 

 

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