Road Crime

Roads - Rails - Sidewalks - Bikeways
David Greene
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Re: Road Crime

Postby David Greene » June 26th, 2015, 11:05 am

FISHMANPET wrote:Guys, I was merely pointing out David's subtle and very likely subconscious hypocrisy.
How is it hypocrisy? Race relations and rules of the road are apples and oranges. If laws are just, we should follow them. If they are unjust, we shouldn't. I don't think anyone has ever claimed requiring a stop for a red light or stop sign is an unjust law.

In the case of road rules, it's important that everyone understand and follow them so that everyone knows what to expect. My experience last night is a concrete example of what happens when we don't.

If you don't like the law, by all means, change it. I'm not stopping you.

Viktor Vaughn
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Re: Road Crime

Postby Viktor Vaughn » June 26th, 2015, 11:39 am

Not looking and running into you was stupid. People are taking issues with your broader implications.

Also, coming to a complete stop at every single stop sign on a bike is a stupid way to ride. It's just simply unnecessary. The stop signs were placed with autos in mind, and sometimes don't make sense on a bike.

There's a false equivalency in comparing rule breaking in a car with rule-breaking on a bike. When I'm driving I feel a sense of responsibilty to not kill or paralyze anyone with the thousands of pounds of steel I control. I would not run a red light even if I knew it would be completely safe to do so.

On I bike, I'm trying not to get run down like road kill. If it's safe, I'll go.

If that bicyclist that hit you was in a car and you were on a bike, you could be dead. But you're not even hurt -- thanks to physics. The rules affect bikes and cars in different ways and the results of breaking those rules are very different. Let's quit with the false equivalencies.

David Greene
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Re: Road Crime

Postby David Greene » June 26th, 2015, 11:46 am

That cyclist that hit my car could have been seriously injured. That affects me the motorist. The physics is the same, whether it is the cyclist's or motorist's fault. There's a difference in the type of trauma and legal proceedings experienced but there is harm on both sides.

Again, cyclists behaving irresponsibly makes me the cyclist less safe. Why is that so difficult to understand?

Change the damn law if you don't like it. If it's such a problem, why isn't anyone taking the initiative to fix it?

Viktor Vaughn
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Re: Road Crime

Postby Viktor Vaughn » June 26th, 2015, 11:58 am

David Greene wrote:Again, cyclists behaving irresponsibly makes me the cyclist less safe. Why is that so difficult to understand?
Yes, bicylists behaving irresponsibly make them less safe. But you've equated irresponsible to illegal and they are not the same thing. Also, taking risks that jepordize your own safety is not equalivant to risking the lives of other community members. The government has a very clear interest to protect the community from reckless idiots. Whether we should have laws to protect people from themselves is much more debatable.

kirby96
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Re: Road Crime

Postby kirby96 » June 26th, 2015, 12:14 pm

Are you honestly claiming that reckless cyclists only endanger themselves? If so that is an absolutely preposterous assertion. I personally received a concussion being hit by a cyclist coming too fast around a curve the wrong way on a bicycle trail. Totaled my bike as well.

Viktor Vaughn
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Re: Road Crime

Postby Viktor Vaughn » June 26th, 2015, 12:41 pm

No, but that doesn't mean a cyclist is a risk to others at the same magnitude as the driver of a vehicle. The risks and responsibilities are very different. Also, I'm NOT defending reckless cycling. I'm just making two points.

Careful rulebreaking on a bicycle is not the same thing as being reckless.

Road rules are designed for cars and there's a social compact to following them regardless of the situation because of the gravity of driving an inheritantly dangerous vehicle through a community. This social compact is/should be different on a bicycle because of physics. When I'm walking, I cross when it's safe. When I'm driving, I cross when I have the right of way and it's safe. Cycling is somewhere in between, but it's more like walking than driving.

MNdible
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Re: Road Crime

Postby MNdible » June 26th, 2015, 12:50 pm

The problem with bikes acting like pedestrians is that they're moving at near-car speeds.

kirby96
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Re: Road Crime

Postby kirby96 » June 26th, 2015, 1:15 pm

Viktor Vaughn wrote:Cycling is somewhere in between, but it's more like walking than driving.

I guess that's where we (and the law) disagree. In an urban setting, the speeds of cyclists can approach vehicle speeds (say, 20MPH+), while pedestrians basically cannot. Take my incident: if it had been a walker, or even a runner, coming down that hill, I would have been fine. It was the combined approach speed, and the potential energy of our cycles that caused the inability to avoid the accident, and the seriousness of the injury and bent metal on the bicycles. Those dynamics seem far more 'car-like' than 'pedestrian-like' in my book.

Viktor Vaughn
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Re: Road Crime

Postby Viktor Vaughn » June 26th, 2015, 1:21 pm

How about in terms of mass?

kirby96
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Re: Road Crime

Postby kirby96 » June 26th, 2015, 1:35 pm

Viktor Vaughn wrote:How about in terms of mass?
That willfully ignores the other elements at work and where they fall in the spectrum of energy required to injure or damage. It's sort of like saying a thrown rock is more like a water balloon (choice of weapon intended) than it is a bullet. Perhaps, but would you want people to treat thrown rocks like water balloons because, hey, they certainly ain't bullets!

Viktor Vaughn
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Re: Road Crime

Postby Viktor Vaughn » June 26th, 2015, 2:15 pm

Yikes. Well I did say a bike was on a spectrum between a ped and an auto, just closer to the ped. I mean in terms of people killed and injured from collisions that's certainly true. Along with damage to property, etc.

I'm sorry a reckless biker hit you, but I hope, head injuries and all, you know that wasn't me. Nor am I defending reckless biking. Just acknowledge the obvious that very few people are killed by getting hit by a bike and people die from getting hit by cars every day. Recognize the fact that cars weigh 100x more than a bike and they can mow down crowds with the careless flick of the toe. Everybody needs to be respectful and considerate, but a bike just doesn't have the same physicaly inherent destructive force as a car or truck.

RailBaronYarr
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Re: Road Crime

Postby RailBaronYarr » June 26th, 2015, 2:49 pm

How fast do most people really get going on bikes, on city streets? I'm a fairly in-shape guy (not as much as I'd like), and bike frequently. I use a gps tracking app for my longer rides. I average 13-14 mph moving speed. Going down hills I hit 24-25 mph. But most places, my speed is definitely closer to walking (3 mph) than driving (30++ mph on city streets). And yes, mass & ability to injure. So, given how reckless cyclists clearly are, I'm sure we'd hear about more bike-on-ped injuries and deaths, right? Wasn't the last death about 43 years ago?

This whole conversation always falls down on party lines, and it's frustrating. Yes, I get mad when I see cyclists entering intersections when plenty of vehicles are around. Or biking on sidewalks with lots of peds around. Or being fairly oblivious on park trails, constantly in the way and weaving for no reason. I think David overestimates how much that behavior makes him personally unsafe when he gets out on a bike. At least, in relation to all the other factors that make biking and walking unsafe, it's gotta be pretty far down the list, and if we have XXXX person-hours to do advocacy or education or whatever, I'm not sure getting all cyclists to follow all rules would achieve much in terms of total bike safety. Time would be better spent fighting for real infrastructure and bike-timed lights and laws that make Idaho-stops legal.

Again, not saying an incident like that isn't scary/frustrating based on what 'could have happened.' I just put it in perspective to other dangerous behavior.

MNdible
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Re: Road Crime

Postby MNdible » June 26th, 2015, 3:53 pm

I don't think David was saying he fears being directly injured by an errant bicyclist. Not to put words in his mouth, but I think that he was suggesting that some bikers behaving badly/unpredictably makes things less safe for all bikers.

This is truly well-trodden ground, but it's pretty clear that bicyclists do bad things (per capita) much more often than cars do. Some of them aren't a big deal, some of them just scare motorists, and some of them do hurt or kill people (usually the people who are doing the bad thing). I suspect that the maneuverability and vision one has (or believes one has) when riding a bike helps to explain why people feel free to do these things.

Some of the bad things (barely slowing down at empty intersections, etc.) are things I do myself on the regular and are easily justifiable. But others are truly boneheaded (flying around stopped cars and blindly entering an intersection seems to be a favorite this summer), and the fact that the person most likely to be hurt by these maneuvers is the bicyclist themselves doesn't make it any less terrifying for a driver who has to slam on the brakes and hope. One of the times I watched this happen, the cyclist even had the wherewithal to flip the driver the bird after getting honked at for crossing against the light.

My point about speed really had to do with comparing jaywalking and a biker crossing against a light, not physics. A jaywalker is moving slowly enough that a driver can usually see them before they're in their path. Bikers move fast enough that they'll be in the driving lane before anybody can react.

kirby96
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Re: Road Crime

Postby kirby96 » June 26th, 2015, 10:26 pm

Sorry, but I'm gonna stick to my guns on this one. I certainly agree that bikes cause less damage than cars. But closer to pedestrians? I honestly think that's ridiculous. You may rarely hear about bike-pedestrian fatalities, but when's the last time you heard about a ped-ped injury or fatality? I'm gonna go out on a limb and guess never. (Cue frantic googling to find the exception that proves the rule now). Plus do you really think bikers hitting people and causing a concussion as happened to me makes the news? Just because they don't cause fatalities doesn't mean bikes are harmless. Let me put it this way: we didn't pass laws to keep cyclists off sidewalks for kicks, presumably it was to address a problem.

I'm a pretty a avid cyclist. Just got home from biking down to Pizzeria Lola for dinner as a matter of fact, because that's my first choice of transportation for getting around town, but the potential to harm clearly exists. The potential to harm while walking is so low as to be effectively zero.

i also question the speed estimate above. When I just tool around the lakes at no great hurry my ride tracker tells me I do about 12 MPH. And that's an average, which includes stopping for lights, slowing down in traffic, etc. so that means I'm routinely hitting 15-20, which on a bike could clearly cause injury. And I get passed routinely. Pedestrians never hit those speeds. Like, never. Big difference.

Some of the 'cyclists get a bad wrap' arguments frankly feel to me a lot like 'two wrongs make a right'. "Oh yeah, well cars are way worse!"

But of a rant here, so I'll close with this: Google bikes hitting pedestrians, then Google pedestrians hitting pedestrians. If you don't have the time I'll share that one of the first hits is 'cyclist kills ANOTHER pedestrian'. Apparently it happened twice in the space of six weeks in NYC just last fall. And that's without scrolling down.

David Greene
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Re: Road Crime

Postby David Greene » June 26th, 2015, 10:40 pm

Viktor Vaughn wrote:
David Greene wrote:Again, cyclists behaving irresponsibly makes me the cyclist less safe. Why is that so difficult to understand?
Yes, bicylists behaving irresponsibly make them less safe..
David Greene wrote:cyclists behaving irresponsibly makes me the cyclist less safe

David Greene
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Re: Road Crime

Postby David Greene » June 26th, 2015, 10:47 pm

MNdible wrote:I don't think David was saying he fears being directly injured by an errant bicyclist. Not to put words in his mouth, but I think that he was suggesting that some bikers behaving badly/unpredictably makes things less safe for all bikers.
.
Correct.

I think most of us can agree that with zero other traffic, there is little to no risk in rolling through a stop sign, maybe even a light. But I see cyclists routinely weave among stopped vehicles to cross against the red, blow through stop signs, etc. That is stupid, irresponsible and downright selfish because if anything happens, it's not just the cyclist that's hurt.

mattaudio
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Re: Road Crime

Postby mattaudio » July 1st, 2015, 12:59 pm

Suburbanite with a car shoots, kills man in Minneapolis. http://www.startribune.com/drive-by-sho ... 311262871/

VAStationDude
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Re: Road Crime

Postby VAStationDude » July 2nd, 2015, 7:48 pm

http://www.twincities.com/crime/ci_2842 ... was-police

Driver hits police officer bicycling during allowed on duty physical activity time. Another motorist hit bicyclist at same intersection 90 minutes later.

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Anondson
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Re: Road Crime

Postby Anondson » July 2nd, 2015, 8:26 pm

"He was wearing a helmet."

Now sure what that had to do with anything, but it's must make an appearance. Otherwise the journalist's license gets taken away, right?

PhilmerPhil
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Re: Road Crime

Postby PhilmerPhil » July 2nd, 2015, 10:19 pm

This article has some good quotes relevant to the irresponsible cyclists discussion above:
http://www.minnpost.com/second-opinion/ ... ign=buffer
“The average person on a bike is arguably no more likely to break a law then their peer in a car,” Walker adds. “However, when they do so it’s more obvious, less normalised. People notice a cyclist pedalling through a red light, whereas speeding — which 80% of drivers admit to doing regularly — is often ignored, despite the immeasurably greater human cost this causes.”


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