Letters to the Editor

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STP: Cyclists need to obey rules of the road

Letter by J.A. Milner, Spanaway on July 12, 2012 at 4:14 pm with 19 Comments »
July 12, 2012 4:14 pm

Craig Hill’s advice (TNT, 7-11) to those participating in the Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic this weekend seems to have left out some vital information. Riders need to remember to share the road. Just because they are in a “special” event doesn’t mean they get to ignore the traffic rules that are there to make sure that the cyclists and motorists have equal and safe access to the roads.

Don’t stream across in clumps of a hundred cyclists at a crosswalk. Take your turn when the light says it’s your turn. Don’t ride four and five abreast and expect all the cars behind you to just drag along at your speed because it’s not safe to pass by you.

I wish that the cyclists will, this time, obey the rules of the road.

Leave a comment Comments → 19
  1. aislander says:

    This letter appears every year at this time…

  2. Miller, your letter will fall on death ears. Bicyclists don’t believe in obeying the law.

  3. You think the would change their ways after a few been hit in the pass by vehicles

  4. MrCarleone says:

    The Spandex Warriors !

    All dressed-up, and nowhere to go !

  5. Yeah no kidding! And its true….most cyclists do NOT obey traffic laws, but you can bet your boots they will scream bloody murder if the rest of us don’t!

    And something else irks the bejeepers out of me regarding bicycle riders…they scream and holler for the need of more bike paths, so the city spends money spraying new lanes, at least here, all over the north end lately. So just the day before yesterday, I end up behind some self absorbed bicycle idiot, pedaling away, holding up traffic, riding to the LEFT of a brand new bicycle path painted on the street, IN the lane of vehicle traffic! Right off to her side was a five foot wide bicycle path for her to safely use, yet she still had to be out there in the street. Yesterday the same thing happened. Two cyclists pedaling, quite slow and casually, two abreast, right down the center lane of a main street!

    If cyclists behave and obey the laws like the rest of us have to, I’ll give them plenty of room….If they are going to be in our faces, DARING the rest of us, I wont give them an inch!

    Back to the STP…..Seems like its my luck that every time they have this thing, my work sends me down the Yelm Highway from the Roy “Y”….the entire length I have to dodge jack****s in spandex who without warning, jump out in front of traffic that is ALSO trying to use a public roadway.

    As far as I am concerned, since so many of these clowns fail to obey traffic laws, and make themselves such a nuisance, the whole stupid event should be shut down.

  6. lawrencejprice says:

    Most cyclists are also motorists. Some motorists are cyclists. The common denominator between the two, a lack of regard for the rules of the road regardless of the mode of travel. They both speed, block traffic and run stop lights and signs. They become self adsorbed while making that all important cell or text. A little common courtesy is all that is needed.

  7. spotted1 says:

    You are aware that this is a well advertised event. It is a well publicized route. It is the same every year. It is roughly the same time every year.

    Yes, there are issues with both cyclists and cars. It would seem that, instead of just common courtesy, which seems to be almost non-existent in society, a bit of common sense would come be helpful.

  8. BlaineCGarver says:

    Whoever supported a law overwhelmingly supporting slow, exposed traffic in the travel lanes of motor vehicles should be horse whipped….with the horse, not the whip. There is a big difference between gently, moderately cycling along a busy street, and these morons trying every day for a personal best, thinking they are running the Tour de France…

  9. There are probably no more or no less percentage of cyclists who regularly ignore the laws as they are drivers (stop texting now!)

    That said – these large events are rather annoying as the participants start pretending that they are in Tour de France or something – and they have sole rights to the road and the regular rules don’t apply.

  10. aislander says:

    I was injured by a car that pulled out in front of my bicycle and me as I was going downhill at about 35 mph (the posted speed limit). I think that was a purposeful attack.

    I was nearly killed by a downhill bicyclist who blew through a stop sign as I was crossing the street in the crosswalk. I can’t judge motivation in that case.

    The point is that cars and bicycles are operated by human beings, with all of the vices and virtues inherent to the human condition…

  11. Looks like several comments posted already trying to justify obnoxious bicyclists by focusing on rude car drivers. It usually happens with letters like this. Sure there are rude car drivers. However it become far more apparent, and dangerous, when a bicyclist rides in the lane of vehicle traffic at speeds far, far lower than the flow of traffic, knowing full well they are impeding that traffic and clearly daring the rest of us to “infringe” on their “right” to be there.

    Then there are those bike riders who will ride on a heavily traveled arterial street when there is an empty side street one block over going the same direction. N. 21st Street is a good example, pedaling along at 10 to 15 mph purposely holding up traffic that is flowing at 30 to 40 mph. Its obvious they do it for only two possible reasons. They are either complete brain dead idiots, or simply deciding to get in the face of the public and dare the rest of us.

    Quite frankly, regardless of what the laws read in some code book, using a human powered toy in an area designed for by the vast majority, too often careless themselves, operating far heavier, far faster motorized vehicles is just stupid. And in reality, they are toys, no different than a skateboard, or a pair of roller skates, both of which are illegal to ride on streets and highways.

    As far as the comment from “spotted1″ which seems directed at my earlier post, the fact that this event and route is well advertised is beside the point. That Yelm Highway for example, which is open for, and designed and intended for motorized vehicle traffic, is dangerous not only for the cyclists, but the traffic trying to get by them. Many times I have witnessed near head on accidents because of some impatient clown in a car found it necessary to cross the center line to get around some two or three abreast pack of cyclists, who more often than not weaved out in front of them as if they were to sole users of that highway. Simple fact is this event is beyond an inconvenience, it is too often dangerous for everyone.

    I think it should be banned.

  12. aislander says, “I was nearly killed by a downhill bicyclist who blew through a stop sign as I was crossing the street in the crosswalk. I can’t judge motivation in that case.”

    Well I can judge motivation. It was clearly some hot dog, obnoxious bicyclist who could have given a tinkers dam* about existing laws, or the safety of anyone else.

    I’ll also bet that when that idiot watched some guy in a car make a rolling stop at a stop sign, they’d be the first and loudest to holler about it.

  13. I have driven past other “well-publicized” road rides and, with few exceptions, the cyclists stayed one-by-one near the edge of the road.

  14. Is that in Idaho Beerboy? You know, outside of Western Washington, people tend to exhibit a tiny bit more civility and consideration than they do here.

    I can tell you first hand, that on that Yelm Highway which normally takes about 20 minutes from Roy Y to Yelm, takes me right around an hour during this event . That extra time taken to avoid running over the far more than “few exceptions” who routinely jump out into the traffic lane, in front of moving traffic with NO warning by the way. Keep in mind I will say the most care and courtesy is show by the average bicycle rider…the worst culprits, as others have mentioned, are the little gaggles of spandex superheroes living out their little fantasy of Tour D France while endangering themselves, the safer cyclists they are passing, and the vehicle traffic that risks head ons with other vehicles while trying to avoid these jocko clowns.

  15. wildcelticrose says:

    interesting how one can change their user ID, but it’s still obvious who they are by the same old “stuff” they spewed under the old one ;)

  16. Yep its me..the only reason I changed it was because some people who couldn’t stand differing opinions in a venue SUPPOSEDLY intended for the free exchange of ideas, spent their time “flagging” those differing ideas.

    Simple censorship and very little in the way of free speech and acceptance of different opinions.

    No doubt this one might get retired too. ;)

  17. wildcelticrose says:

    Well I’m not going to rat you out ;)

    and you know me, if I want to call BS, I do it openly, not by flagging comments…

    have fun, from what I’ve seen in here the last couple of days, I think I’ll go back to spending my time doing other things.

  18. Haaaaa! Dont worry about “ratting me out”! Some day I might even do it myself! :D

    And yes you do call BS openly, I wish more did! Unfortunately there are too many around these posts who do not, and “flagging” seems to be the only recourse for some when an opposing comment gets a bit too far under the skin, or someone else’s views get too uncomfortable.

    Seems this city needs a big welcome sign…”Welcome the Tacoma: Land of Perpetual Thin Skin and Open Minds As Long As Your Thoughts Match Ours”!! HAAA

    However WCR….I will make note that some of my “spews” against CERTAIN bicycle groups, I’ve heard YOU complain about as well! :D

    Once again, if bicyclists are going to abide by the same rules they want everyone else to abide by, I’ll give them all the room in the world….Most often I’ll skip over a block to avoid them, which THEY should do themselves, considering many side streets they could use in a far safer manner. But show me a “cycle nazi” out to get in the face of traffic and purposely slow down the works for no other reason than to make some point, I wont have much sympathy. In this case I repeat my earlier observations about the one cyclist riding in traffic, to the LEFT of a brand new bike path, or the two riding down a fairly busy street two abreast holding up several cars. Unfortunately car drivers, are too often psychotic…why would anyone “push their buttons” knowing the physical odds are against them.

    Unfortunately common sense just isn’t very common anymore.

  19. The crying and whining is just precious! Thanks for the entertainment everyone. Looking forward to next year’s edition of the anti-bicycle gripe-fest! Good luck with your ban (and your pent-up rage)!

    “Cry baby cry
    Make your mother sigh
    She’s old enough to know better
    So cry baby cry.”

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