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Friday, June 23 2017 @ 08:24 AM UTC

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Large Vehicle Urban Driving Safety Program

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: I found several aspects of this Vision Zero Large Vehicle safety video interesting.:
1) It was NOT done by the MVA but by San Francisco's MTA and their contractors are required to watch the video.
2) It shows a lot of bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure you don't see here.
3) It explains why a lot of bike/ped enhancements work as well as what to do when driving and parking around them. Imagine that, a official source that tells trucks not to park in bike lanes. But be real if people are not told how to use something new are they supposed to know? And yes I well insult a lot of road engineers, these new designs are all that obvious to a car centric audience (most of the people driving.)

I will strongly assert that for many people roads are for cars to go fast on and there needs to be a lot of education that goes out to explain why slowing down is a good thing and how to share road space with cyclists and pedestrians. This video is a great start, now to see stuff like this happen in Maryland.]

Main page: https://www.sfmta.com/projects-planning/projects/large-vehicle-urban-driving-safety-program
Video: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCDc-thAeHe1idBKvsZCoOKQ
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OUTDATED HEADLIGHTS PUT DRIVERS & PEDS AT RISK

Biking Elsewhere-> USA Today reports about 2,500 pedestrians are killed at night every year crossing the road, in many cases because drivers can't see them because their headlights don't shine brightly enough. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety concluded last year, that two-thirds of lighting packages available on 21 small SUV models deliver “poor” performance. In addition, 10 mid-size cars' and 7 pickup truck headlight systems were deemed as poor. Outdated federal rules have blocked automakers from introducing adaptive beam headlamps that automatically adjust to oncoming traffic to reduce glare and help drivers see better, even though the technology is legal and available in Europe and Japan. At the same time, sleek styling and manufacturing mistakes on currently available systems has led to poor performance on the road, including excessive glare and insufficient light on the pavement. https://usat.ly/2qE5iCP

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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The myth of the beleaguered Boston driver

Biking ElsewhereBy Dante Ramos, Boston Globe

IF YOU’RE DRIVING in a crowded city, it’s your job not to hit anybody. Not cyclists, not pedestrians, not even pedestrians wearing headphones.
...

The problem isn’t that Walsh thinks pedestrians and cyclists should pay attention to their surroundings. (Shouldn’t everybody?) It’s that, in his comments, the mayor seemed to accept the myth of the beleaguered Boston driver who’s at the mercy of unpredictable bikers and walkers.

When a car hits a bike in the Netherlands and some other countries, laws generally presume that the person driving the two- or three-ton metal box is responsible. Here in Boston, we’ve all internalized the idea that driving is how human beings naturally get around, and that everything else in city life — our transportation plans, our development rules, our circadian rhythms — must bend to accommodate it.
...

In practice, though, the city’s bicycle lanes are regularly blocked by delivery trucks, passenger vehicles, and even police cars. All too often, city government still sends this message: Real people use cars; all that other stuff — the bike lanes, the climate planning, the official paeans to transit-oriented development — is OK only if doesn’t bother drivers.
...

It’s easy to blame crazy cyclists or headphoned jaywalkers for getting hit by cars, but the victims are often children and elderly people. Calls for personal responsibility also mask the underlying issue: Many streets and intersections in Boston aren’t properly designed for the mix of people using them.
...

The other possibility is that, when throngs of transit commuters pour out of South Station every morning and jaywalk across the street, they’re sending a message of their own: We’re focusing too closely on the needs of motor vehicles, and not enough on all the people around them.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2017/05/20/the-myth-beleaguered-boston-driver/LEpqqu6VVeVUDnh2gybNzJ/story.html
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How Sweden Has Redesigned Streets To Route Around Bad Human Behavior

Biking ElsewhereBY CHARLIE SORREL, Fast Company

...
Belin is one of the creators of Vision Zero, a Swedish policy instigated in 1997 that has the aim of eliminating road deaths. But unlike almost every other scheme to make roads safer, Vision doesn’t try to blame the victim or the perpetrator. Instead, it tries to design the system itself to be safer. And it’s working. Since its beginning, Vision Zero has more than halved road deaths, to below three fatalities per 100,000. Compare that to the U.S., where the figure is 11.6 per 100,000.
...

https://www.fastcompany.com/3066435/how-sweden-has-redesigned-streets-to-route-around-bad-human-behavior
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Side guards: New push to make safety devices on trucks mandatory

Biking ElsewhereB' Spokes: It amazes me that something that is standard in Europe, saves lives and improves gas mileage can't get done here. Even more (not talked about in the video), truck side guards can save pedestrian and cyclists lives as well as they help prevent "fall under rear wheel" deaths. It is outrageous that the trucking industry can remain negligent so long on this issue.

http://www.today.com/video/side-guards-new-push-to-make-safety-devices-on-trucks-mandatory-871637059838
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We are the bicycle lobby. We are coming for your parking.

Biking Elsewhereby Comrade Rosovvy, City Pages

[B' Spokes: A bit tongue and cheek but has a point.]

...
Where once you could park eight feet in front of a business to purchase a hanging plant, we sons and daughters of the morning star will force you to walk one additional city block on sidewalks like a poor person. Your spirit will be crushed and your very feet will cry out for mercy.
...

http://www.citypages.com/arts/we-are-the-bicycle-lobby-we-are-coming-for-your-parking/422843924
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- COUNTDOWN PEDESTRIAN SIGNALS WITH AND WITHOUT THE FLASHING HAND FIELD STUDY

Biking Elsewhere(http://bit.ly/2jw8c9X): This study found statistically significant decreases in pedestrians who were still in the crosswalk when cross traffic was released at three of the four sites when the Flashing Don’t Walk was removed from the clearance phase. An increase in the number of pedestrians running was detected at some of the sites during the Countdown Pedestrian Signal alone condition. Removing the FDW signal from the CPS could result in an increase in the number of pedestrians who reach the opposite side of the crosswalk without interfering with cross traffic.

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.

[B' Spokes: So basically the flashing (don't walk) hand that comes on too early for most pepole (so most ignore it) doesn't work as well as a simple count down.]
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PED SAFETY ENFORCEMENT OPERATIONS GUIDE

Biking Elsewhere-> The “Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operations: A How-To Guide“ (http://1.usa.gov/1GYHe2B) provides tips and guidance on how States and communities can effectively deploy pedestrian safety enforcement operations to reduce pedestrian injuries and fatalities. It includes a summary of promising practices, guidance on planning and implementing an operation, a discussion of several considerations and variations, recommendations regarding the evaluation of pedestrian safety programs, and a series of case studies. The guide also contains an Appendix with sample forms and other useful information.

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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WIDER LANES MAKE STREETS MORE DANGEROUS

Biking Elsewhere-> A new study (Narrower Lanes, Safer Streets: http://bit.ly/1AJVv2q) reinforces the argument that cities need to reconsider lane widths and redesign streets accordingly. In a paper to be presented at the Canadian Institute of Traffic Engineers annual conference, author Dewan Masud Karim presents hard evidence that wider lanes increase risk on city streets. Looking at the crash databases, Karim found that collision rates escalate as lane widths exceed about 10.5 feet. Roads with the widest lanes — 12 feet or wider — were associated with greater crash rates and higher impact speeds. Karim also found that crash rates rise as lanes become narrower than about 10 feet, though this does not take impact speeds and crash severity into account. He concluded that there is a sweet spot for lane widths on city streets, between about 10 and 10.5 feet. [http://bit.ly/1eOgWVR]

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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COURT FINDS WI DOT USED INFLATED FORECASTS TO JUSTIFY ROAD EXPANSION

Biking Elsewhere-> On Friday, the U.S. Eastern District Court upheld claims in a lawsuit filed by 1000 Friends of Wisconsin and cut off federal funding for the beleaguered Highway 23 road expansion project between Fond du Lac and Plymouth. The Court agreed with the land use organization that the Wisconsin Department of Transportation used unsupported, inflated traffic forecasts to justify the project. The Court ruled that the project is ineligible for federal funding until documented accurate traffic forecasts can be made that justify expanding the highway. The state can now either go back to the drawing board and do verifiable forecasting or scrap the expansion plans. The ruling does not stop the state from building the project using only state funds. [http://bit.ly/1Q6pdoX]

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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