Helmet crackdown 10th and Ontario

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#1

from a poster to the Velolove listserve:

"Just a warning; motorcycle cops handing out tickets for not having a helmet at 10th and Ontario today about 6pm. Not sure if its part of a bigger June is Bike Crackdown Month or just a one off thing."

Nothing there this morning, but I can't blame them for picking that spot. High proportion of hipsters per capita in that area.

I'd still think that every minute spent dedicated to that purpose would be better spent observing
some of the high-accident and high-fatality intersections around town.

By all means, when a police officer sees a cyclist without a helmet, they should ticket/warn, but
dedicating police resources to this is rather silly.

"I'd still think that every minute spent dedicated to that purpose would be better spent observing some of the high-accident and high-fatality intersections around town. "

And you'd be right. Or, we could skip the helmet crackdown and concentrate on the drunk drivers, oops, I mean the folks still texting and talking while driving. Or we could enforce the 30kmh limit now on 5th Ave, or the countless non-stops at stop signs in residential neighbourhoods. And so on.

8000 caught so far (under new cel phone restrictions) and I see at least one person a day continuing with this bad habit... and I don't get out much.

Enforcing the countless non-stops in residential neighbourhoods would be the same thing: putting police resources to poor use. Yes they suck. Yes they happen. Yes cyclists do it all the time (rolling stops battle aside, this is still an offence).

"Enforcing the countless non-stops in residential neighbourhoods would be the same thing: putting police resources to poor use."

I think it would help dissuade people from short-cutting through neighbourhoods. I know I'm getting pretty tired of people racing through my area to miss the light at Fraser/12th at the same time kids are going to/from school.

I think they should put some cops on Dunsmuir with the new driving restrictions. Cars are not allowed to turn right on Seymour or Hornby along Dunsmuir. There are multiple signs pointing this out at both intersections, but cars are still doing it.

Although the bike lanes are not officially open on Dunsmuir, I have been riding in them for a week or so, to avoid slowing down car traffic. This morning a car was turning right at Richards (perfectly legal to do so), but instead of waiting in the traffic lane, he decided to pull his car across the bike lane while waiting for pedestrians to cross. I slowed down and went to bike in front of his car. He started to go, as he was oblivious to bikers, and I had to stop to avoid getting hit. The girl biking behind me was following me too close and she ran her tire into my leg. Yes, she should have given more room, and that was her fault, but the driver should have waited in the correct lane and been more aware. He has a yield sign and did not obey it and then was laughing at the fact she ran into me, when he caused the incident. Luckily neither of us were hurt, but it could have been worse.

I am concerned there are going to be more than a few bikers hit by cars turning right, whether they have a no right turn sign or a yield, as Dunsmuir will have bike traffic flowing both ways next week.

Squig,

Judging by a number of your posts re biking, I'm willing to bet that you are game for an altercation with drivers from the minute you leave home on your bike.

Why would you "bike in front of the car" that you know is "oblivious to bikers"? Why wouldn't you shoulder check to the left, and go around him? That's what I would do.

M

CK:

I don't disagree with you that it's wrong/dangerous for cars to do that, what I'm saying is that we need to pick our battles. Having police attempt to enforce little-traveled side streets is a similar waste of resources as it is to ticket cyclists at 10th and Ontario, or 10th and Quebec for blowing the stop sign as they have in the past, if not moreso. With the cyclist-trap, at least it is one of the busier cycling intersections in the city, so if you're looking at number of infractions cited, it's probably more effective. For police to try to cover the entire city, even with "rolling areas" of enforcement, would be a huge drain on the force.

The dangers of cars blowing stop signs vs. cyclists doing the same isn't really up for debate here, since we all seem to agree cars are far more likely to cause significant damage. However, it's fairly hypocritical for us cycling enthusiasts to complain about something that we do on a regular basis. And that kind of hypocrisy does us no favours.

Regarding the dangerous drivers around schools, perhaps that is something the schools could try to enforce somewhat, or petition the city to help. Getting parents out with signs, speed bumps, etc. Those long bumps make no difference for slow cars or cyclists, but going over one of those at 50 kph is likely to lose you a bumper.

"For police to try to cover the entire city, even with "rolling areas" of enforcement, would be a huge drain on the force."

If you put a traffic cop on duty to patrol a four block radius from my front door I'd bet (s)he would earn her weekly wage in a single day handing out tickets for traffic infractions. I'll bet you could say the same for most any neighbourhood. The sad reality is that there's no public demand for zero-tolerance on dangerous driving because we all do it and hope for the best.

To address the 'we do it too' argument, I don't think it's useful or reasonable to equate cars and bikes. They are so vastly different in operation and potential for harm to others that lumping them together is at best unrealistic, at worst deadly.

"To address the 'we do it too' argument, I don't think it's useful or reasonable to equate cars and bikes. They are so vastly different in operation and potential for harm to others that lumping them together is at best unrealistic, at worst deadly."

That and we know cyclists never break cycling related laws (which are stupid to begin with), and if they did, who cares? Cars are deadly, bikes are not. Never in the history of time has any cyclist done anything to cause harm to themselves or others. Leave them completely alone.

"Never in the history of time has any cyclist done anything to cause harm to themselves or others. Leave them completely alone."

Well, that's not true. Cyclists have injured and killed pedestrians and other cyclists with dumb-ass behaviour. There's plenty of stupid to go around.

YourMom,

I always hope that I am able to leave my house, obey all rules of the road and arrive at work without any story, so you lose the bet. I never want an altercation, especially after being hit by a car almost a year ago that still requires rehab. I would never want to get into an altercation. I'm skinnier than most and have no idea how to fight.

I comment a lot on biking from what I see, and I bike almost every day, going to and from work, plus weekend rides. If someone is doing something wrong, why not try and find a solution to correct it. If i'm doing something wrong I wouldn't want to do it anymore.

If I went left I would have had to hop the divider, go into rush hour traffic and weave back into the bike lane. I went in front of the car because I had the right of way, there were pedestrians near me, and I was hoping to make eye contact with him so he would realize what was happening and not hit me.

By the by, awesome use of quotes.

"That and we know cyclists never break cycling related laws (which are stupid to begin with), and if they did, who cares? Cars are deadly, bikes are not. Never in the history of time has any cyclist done anything to cause harm to themselves or others. Leave them completely alone."

I cant tell if your being sarcastic.. Isnt this thread about cyclists not obeying the laws? also, a few posts up we see a cyclist that was following too close, running into another cyclist, causing harm.

I somehow doubt that there are enough traffic cops to patrol 4-block radii throughout the city, even on a rolling schedule. If there are, where are they? Sitting at the station having coffee and waiting on lights being out at a major intersection?

"To address the 'we do it too' argument, I don't think it's useful or reasonable to equate cars and bikes. They are so vastly different in operation and potential for harm to others that lumping them together is at best unrealistic, at worst deadly."

We've all been over the car vs. cyclist damage comparison before, and no one is disagreeing. What I'm saying is, according to our current laws, whether you think they're wrong or not, we are equal. To treat ourselves as special simply because we believe we are so does nothing but hurt our cause. Cars could be argued to be "more special" because they have the majority of transportation land suited to them. That makes us a fringe group, and while vocal dissent is good, flat out ignoring the law because it doesn't suit us (and then complaining when we get busted for it) is not the path to change.

Squig:

What did you love most about the way I used quotes?

"Too often cars are turning right and don't shoulder check and I have almost been clipped 20-30 times. Other times they start the right turn and stop in the bike lane while waiting for pedestrians to cross. I was sideswiped by a van on Dunsmuir last July and I still have ligament and tendon damage from it. The guy said he didn't see me. That's because he didn't look and just moved his van into the bike lane and hit me. Also, I hate that excuse. Of course you didn't see me, because if you did and still hit me, I think that would be a serious crime. And, end rant."

20 or 30 times, eh? I'm starting to see a pattern of altercation that makes me think I would still win my bet.

M

" I somehow doubt that there are enough traffic cops to patrol 4-block radii throughout the city, even on a rolling schedule."

As I noted in my post, they would pay for themselves in short order.

"To treat ourselves as special simply because we believe we are so does nothing but hurt our cause."

Who is making that argument? Not me. If I break the law I am perfectly happy to suffer the consequences when caught.

"I'm starting to see a pattern of altercation that makes me think I would still win my bet. "

Being almost hit by inattentive drivers is NOT looking for an altercation.

Drivers get in fender-benders and come to blows... is it any surprise that someone almost run over on a bike might have a visceral reaction to the incident?

Fair enough

"altercation" may well enough be the wrong word. But I certainly don't think he or she is biking defensively.

"but instead of waiting in the traffic lane, he decided to pull his car across the bike lane while waiting for pedestrians to cross. I slowed down and went to bike in front of his car."

Shouldn't you stop, wait for him to turn, and then proceed?

jeebus: "Shouldn't you stop, wait for him to turn, and then proceed?"

What's wrong with what he did?

Is it not smart to try to pass somebody on the right while coming out of their blind spot after you
see that they have already started their turn to the right?

A driver doing such a thing may have been guilty of entering the intersection before it was clear,
but a cyclist doing such a maneuver is guilty of darwinistic decision making.

The term "dead right" is especially applicable to cyclists in many situations. Though, I'm not too sure
the action described was even right in this case.

Squiggsy behaved legally, predictably, and it should be noted, with more due care and attention than anyone else involved. The driver not only blocked the bike lane, contrary to the rules, he failed to ensure it was safe to proceed, another violation of the Motor Vehicle Act.

Designated use lane

153.2 If a highway has a designated use lane, a person must not drive, operate, stand or park a motor vehicle in that lane except as authorized by a regulation under section 209.1 or a bylaw or resolution of the council of a municipality under section 124.2.

(3.1) If a vehicle is stopped, standing or parked in a position that causes it to interfere with or impede the use of the highway by vehicles or traffic using, accessing or egressing a designated use highway or a designated use lane in accordance with a regulation made under section 209.1 or a bylaw or resolution of the council of a municipality under section 124.2, a peace officer or traffic control person may move the vehicle or cause it to be moved.

Passing on right

158 (1) The driver of a vehicle must not cause or permit the vehicle to overtake and pass on the right of another vehicle, except

(a) when the vehicle overtaken is making a left turn or its driver has signalled his or her intention to make a left turn,

(b) when on a laned roadway there is one or more than one unobstructed lane on the side of the roadway on which the driver is permitted to drive, or

(c) on a one way street or a highway on which traffic is restricted to one direction of movement, where the roadway is free from obstructions and is of sufficient width for 2 or more lanes of moving vehicles.

(2) Despite subsection (1), a driver of a vehicle must not cause the vehicle to overtake and pass another vehicle on the right

(a) when the movement cannot be made safely, or

(b) by driving the vehicle off the roadway.

You said:

Keam: "Squiggsy behaved legally, predictably, and it should be noted, with more due care and
attention than anyone else involved."

But then you quoted a bunch of things which didn't back up either claim. They did back up that the
driver shouldn't have been there.

None of your passing on the right scenarios apply to when a driver has signaled and commenced his
turn to the right. Honestly, I'm not certain about the protocol for right turns from other than the
right-most lane, so I'll still reserve judgement on the legality of Squiggsy's maneuver.

I will maintain that it was a foolish thing to do.

Regardless of what a law might say, when you see a car turning right in front of you, you don't
approach from the blind-spot and try to pass in front of them. That's a recipe for disaster.

See again the concept of "dead right". If you put yourself in the path of a car that *doesn't* see you
(whether they can or can't is irrelevant), you better hope you have more than the Motor Vehicle Act
to save your ass.