• http://blog.ianbicking.org Ian Bicking

    There’s reasonable rules that should apply to bikes, but stopping at stop signs isn’t one of them. Coming to a full stop is hard/tiring on a bike, unnecessary, and usually not expected by cars anyway — I slow everyone down *more* when I come to a complete stop because everyone is left confused about right of way. Bikers should slow down for stop signs, navigate the right of way (using eye contact and body language), but should not be expected to stop.

    (The “Idaho stop” (they allow this in Idaho) basically codifies normal stop sign practice as law.)

    • Becky Striepe

      That’s a good point. It is exhausting, especially if you’re mid-climb. I love the Idaho stop idea! I wish that were the rule in more places!

  • Merlin MacDonald

    Becky, one idea in this article is just plain dangerous. You write “Cyclists are supposed to ride in the road, and they’re supposed to behave like cars.” Excuse me? Put the two parts of that sentence together and I think many readers may interpret that cyclists can ride anywhere in the driving lane they want. Here in bike-friendly Berkeley there must be quite a bit of confusion on this point, so I looked it up. The local Bicycle Code of Conduct instructs to : Ride as near to the right as practicable; and Don’t needlessly block the road. So “ride in the road” and “behave like cars” could be replaced with something like “ride on the far right edge of the lane, the farther over the better.”

    Are there overriding federal and state laws? I didn’t check.

    I see some riders here assuming the whole right lane is theirs, and showing a righteous attitude to boot. It creates severe hazards. Please don’t give them any more “reason” to do the wrong thing!

    • http://glueandglitter.com Becky Striepe

      Yes! This is exactly the sort of clarification that’s so helpful! The more educated we all are, the better.

      As for the righteous attitude, that’s a real bummer and definitely part of the problem. I think that a lot of cyclists are aggressive because they feel threatened by careless drivers. Not that it’s a good excuse, but it’s just another example of that cycle, you know? We need education on both sides.

      Thanks, Merlin!

  • http://www.sportsballshop.co.uk Charlotte

    I have to say I am put off cycling on the roads by the way a lot of car drivers treat cyclists. But I am also very aware that the way some cyclists behave really does put themselves at risk swerving in and out or cycling 2 abreast . It is also rather irritating when there are cycle paths to use they tend not to bother,

  • http://www.parrabuddy.blogspot.com skippy

    REMEMBER that you are a road user and you are entitled to the same space that a vehicle is going to occupy !
    When riding i take as much space as i need but indicate to those following when it is safe for them to pass . Dropping into a pothole not only delays those following but can leave the cyclist with an injury that could have been avoided if those following showed more consideration .
    My recent blog item on ” Cycling Etiquette ” covers attitudes in all parts of the world so any contributions would be welcomed .

  • http://www.facebook.com/grace.adams.5036 Grace Adams

    In Willimantic, it seems about 2/3 of bikers ride on the sidewalks even though it is illegal. But there is a fairly recent state law doubling penalties for hitting bikes and pedestrians and car drivers are getting somewhat kinder and gentler with bikes and pedestrians than they used to be.