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Tuesday, May 03 2016 @ 08:42 AM UTC
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Cyclists, motorists have to share the road

Biking ElsewhereRegina Brett
Plain Dealer Columnist

Who owns the road?

When it comes down to bikes vs. cars, it all depends on whom you ask.

Motorists want bikes to speed up.

Cyclists want cars to slow down.

Who wins?

That's like asking where a 500-pound gorilla sits.

I hosted "The Sound of Ideas" radio show on bike safety Friday morning on WCPN FM/90.3

Fifteen minutes after leaving Ideastream, I saw a shaken bicyclist standing on the side of Carnegie Avenue, his bike on the ground, blood dripping from his chin and a horrified motorist handing him tissues.

Thank goodness the cyclist wasn't seriously hurt or killed.

Last year, there were 2,066 accidents in Ohio involving bikes. Of those, 18 were fatal. Even the best cyclists can get hit.

Last month, Miles Coburn was struck and killed by an SUV in Geauga County. Coburn was a seasoned cyclist who rode thousands of miles every year. He was an environmentalist and popular biology professor who left behind a wife and two kids. What a loss to his family and the John Carroll University community.

So, who owns the road?

We all do. The road belongs to both bikes and cars. We all have the same rights. It's time we share the same responsibilities. The Ohio Bicycle Federation at <a href="http://www.ohiobike.org">www.ohiobike.org</a>; offers a bumper sticker that reads: SHARE THE ROADS. Same Roads. Same Rights. Same Rules.

Good motto. Laws govern most of the movement out there, but so do basic courtesy and civility.

Cyclists are not moving targets to throw cups at, to curse at, or to sideswipe for laughs.

Motorists are not members of the Evil Empire just because they're driving a gas guzzling polluting hunk of metal.

Cyclists can't choose to be a car, a bike or a pedestrian depending upon the mood or the situation. Bikes are considered to be vehicles. If you ride on the road, you follow the laws that cover vehicles. They aren't optional.

You ride with the traffic. You stop at red lights and stop signs. You don't weave through stopped cars to get ahead. You don't ride five abreast. You signal your turns.

If you want to be safe, wear a helmet. If you ride at night, we can't see you unless you have reflectors or lights. If you wear headphones, you won't hear us.

Motorists should remember kindergarten. You have to share. It's that simple. Bicyclists have an equal right to the road. Yes, even when they're only going 10 miles an hour.

Take a deep breath and wait until you have room to pass. Keep 3 feet away from bikes when passing.

There shouldn't be a need to say it, but there is: Don't harass cyclists. Marty Cader, the bicycle/pedestrian coordinator for the Cleveland City Planning Commission, told me someone threw a chunk of wood at him while he was biking.

Cyclists are dodging potholes, gravel and parked cars. They shouldn't have to dodge you. Stay off your cell phones and slow down.

With gas climbing past $4, we're going to see more bikes on the road, which is a good thing for all of us.

Let's make it safer for them, and for everyone else, too.
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San Francisco bicyclists get their own traffic light

Biking Elsewhereimage
(SAN FRANCISCO, CA) — A notoriously dangerous San Francisco intersection underwent a big safety fix this week, the city's first on-the-ground bicycle-safety enhancement in two years. The SF Municipal Transportation Agency installed a traffic light specifically for bicyclists and pedestrians at the Fell and Masonic intersection, along the Golden Gate Park Panhandle, an intersection that had posed mounting safety hazards to bicyclists and pedestrians. ...
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Cities rethink wisdom of 50s-era parking standards

Biking Elsewhere...
Like nearly all U.S. cities, D.C. has requirements for off-street parking. Whenever anything new is built — be it a single-family home, an apartment building, a store or a doctor's office — a minimum number of parking spaces must be included. The spots at the curb don't count: These must be in a garage, a surface lot or a driveway.

D.C. is now considering scrapping those requirements — part of a growing national trend. Officials hope that offering the freedom to forgo parking will lead to denser, more walkable, transit-friendly development.

Opponents say making parking more scarce will only make the city less hospitable. Commuters like Randy Michael of Catharpin, Va., complain they are already forced to circle for hours in some neighborhoods.
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CERN and the Bicycle

Biking Elsewhereimage
Interesting article about the early days of CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) where they used bicycles to transmit data (on tapes) from one computer to another. And what's the best way to get around a 17 mile Hadron Collider by bike of course!
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Texting while driving 'more dangerous than drugs or alcohol'

Biking Elsewhere[And there is still no law against it?]
LONDON (AFP) - Texting behind the wheel is more dangerous than driving while under the influence of alcohol or cannabis, researchers said Thursday.

Research carried out on 17 young drivers (aged 17-24) using a simulator found that reaction time slowed by 35% when they were writing or reading text messages while driving. In comparison, reaction time deteriorated by 21% for those under the influence of cannabis, and by 12% at the legal alcohol limit.

Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) -- which carried out the study for the RAC Foundation -- also found that steering control worsened by 91% for those who were distracted by texts, compared to 35% when cannabis was involved.

The tests also showed that texters were less able to maintain safe distances from other cars and they tended to drift out of their lane more often.

RAC Foundation director Stephen Glaister said the research &quot;clearly shows that a motorist who is texting is significantly more impaired than a motorist at the legal limit for alcohol.&quot;

TRL researcher Nick Reed added: &quot;When texting, drivers are distracted by taking their hand off the wheel to use their phone, by trying to read small text on the phone display, and by thinking about how to write their message. This combination of factors resulted in the impairments to reaction time and vehicle control that place the driver at a greater risk than having consumed alcohol to the legal limit for driving.&quot;

Nearly half of all drivers aged 18 to 24 in Britain admit to texting while driving, according to an earlier RAC poll of over 2000 young drivers.
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Bicycle polo in Baltimore-Pickup Games

Biking in BaltimoreMt. Washington bike polo is in its fall season and would like to invite anyone interested in trying it out to come out for a Sunday pickup game. We play the field version of the game and start at 4:00 on Sunday afternoon weekly, until the time change, when we play at 3:00. For more info, map of the field, and links to the rules, visit us at: <a href="http://groups.google.com/group/mt-washington-bike-polo">http://groups.google.com/group/mt-washington-bike-polo</a>;
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What to make of $4.00 gas

Biking Elsewhereimage
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Registration open for CTC Transportation Summit

Mass TransitThe Corridor Transit Corporation, the manager of Howard Transit and Connect a Ride, will be holding it's annual Transportation Summit on Thursday, November 13th at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum. This year the CTC summit will be focusing on creating regional and acheivable solutions to Central Maryland's transportation problems. Learn more about the CTC summit here.
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Join OLC at the Rally for the River this Sunday

Bike Maryland updatesThe Jones Falls Watershed Association will be hosting the Rally for the River this Sunday, September 21st, on the Jones Falls Expressway (I-83) in Baltimore from 8AM to 2PM. The Rally is a great way to get the rare chance to bike and walk all over the big bad highway that lords over the Jones Falls river valley. There is a nominal $5 fee to participate. Parking is available at the Cold Spring Lane exit. One Less Car will be in attendance, so stop by our booth for free bike maps, transit maps, etc. etc.
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Tour du Port 2008 will be new and improved!

Bike Maryland updatesLast year's Tour was great but we think the 2008 edition of One Less Car's biggest fundraiser will be even better. Here's why:

No more long waits at the registration table in the morning. Everyone who registers online will soon be getting a paper ride number in the mail. The number will identify you as a TDP rider. When you show up on the morning of the event just have the number visibly attached to your clothing and you will be ready to go!

The food and entertainment will be REAL good. When you get back from your ride you'll be treated to a pizza party provided by S'ghetti Eddie's, one of North Baltimore's best places for tasty comfort food. And we've ditched the D.J. in favor of a cool live band!

Location, Location, Location. This year's ride will be at the Canton Waterfront Park at 3001 Boston Street. We'll be right on the waterfront and just a few minutes ride from all the goings on at the annual Fell's Point Fun Festival.

Baltimore's &quot;cyclist in chief&quot; Mayor Sheila Dixon will be our Grand Marshall. You can join the Mayor as she leads the riders out at 7:30AM. Will you be able to keep up with the leader of our fair city?

So, if you haven't signed up, now is the time! We will close registrations at 2000 participants. The last day to register online is September 30th. Click here for the Tour du Port 2008 site. We hope to see you there! <a href="http://www.onelesscar.org/TDP/2008/">http://www.onelesscar.org/TDP/2008/</a>;

And remember - all registration fees go towards One Less Car's statewide advocacy efforts!

Richard Chambers, Executive Director

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