Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Summer drivers - yikes, on 2 wheels or 4

Yes, I know the roads are open and clear, and the livin's easy, but bikers and drivers...

This guy was riding along the highway. As I drove by, what I thought was a safe distance beside him, he yelled into my car window "BIKE!"

I'm not sure what was meant. Perhaps he thought I was too close?
I didn't want to veer into oncoming traffic, and having biked a lot along this road, I know the distance to keep away.

Long line of traffic
-you can see the cars passing each other, too!
Scared the pants off me.
I drove home, emptied groceries, and walked down to the road and grabbed a photo of him as he grimaced along his way. He seemed more to making a statement of his entitlement to be on the road, than enjoying himself.

The key to being safe is to be predictable.
When I watch drivers swerving into traffic to avoid a cyclist, I become afraid!

This is a horrible stretch of highway, where there is 500m to pass. (Yes, I measured it!) Often, as hubby goes into town for errands, he'll have to pull over to the right. People often pass 4 or 5 cars just at the bend in the road in the background of the photo.( I'm standing across the highway from my driveway.)

You have to hustle to get up to speed along this stretch, as drivers scream around the corner behind us as we pull out of the drive. I told the story about a driver passing the driver behind me, as I tried to turn right to go home one day.

But oncoming drivers like to pass on this spot, too.

This guy passed me on a double line,
notice his footwear? Flip flops!
One thing I learned from my driving friend experts, if you do need to get onto the shoulder of the road, keep two wheels on the asphalt, and you will find it easier to navigate along the slippery gravel on the shoulders.

Ten deadly driver mistakes:

Two wheels as dangerous as four

While a driver's mistakes can affect those riding in other cars, at least those people are protected by a frame, seatbelt or airbag. Motorcyclists and bicyclists are completely exposed and tend not to fare so well if involved in an accident with a car, but they do bear some responsibility for their own safety if they ride without wearing a helmet.

Bicycle Safety: How to Not Get Hit by Cars 

Ten ways you can get hit by cars (with pictures) and meaningful ways to avoid them. 

The Rear End, Pt. 2 A car runs into you from behind. 

This is what many cyclists fear the most, but it's actually not very common, 

comprising only 3.8% of collisions. 

However, it's one of the hardest collisions to avoid, 

since you're not usually looking behind you.

All in a straight line!
10 Jul 2012 – Central Saanich police seek info from any witnesses to Monday hit and run.

Winnipeg Free Press‎ - 21 hours ago
A 19-year-old man on a bicycle was killed early Monday in Thompson after he was hit by a car.

16 Apr 2012 –The male victim, who has not been identified, was cycling eastbound on Victoria Street East near South Blair Road when he was hit.

 18 May 2012
 –An eight-year-old Brampton boy is in a Toronto hospital with serious head injuries after he was hit car on a residential street yesterday.
Fun outing if you ride safely!

cyclist was struck by a car this morning near Lake Shore Blvd. E. and Parliament St.
Share 27 Mar 2012
A man who was struck by a vehicle while riding his bicycle in Abbotsford Tuesday evening has been taken...


Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Great and informative post -- I am going to steal your description "grimaced along his way" (not in my blog, just in conversation) because it is such a perfect way to describe so many bicycle riders that we see -- they just don't look like they're having any fun! At all. Here in Oregon, we're in a semi-rural area and encounter many of the problems you mention.

Linda said...

My dad was a state trooper - and he used to always say that just because you had the "right of way" didn't always make your way right! Sometimes it was just plain stupid to insist on your right of way! People take so many chances - it amazed me that more of them aren't killed in the process! Scary photo of the guy in flipflops on the Motorcycle!

Kay said...

This was good bike instruction for drivers and bikers. I imagine the biker was just letting you know he was there... just in case. You can never tell.

DeniseinVA said...

Bicyclists scare me, motorbikes too and even joggers. This is an interesting post. I've had similar experiences in the past.

Red said...

I quit riding on roads about 10 years ago. Too many drivers think cyclists shouldn't be on the road.