Tuesday Coffee Talk - Staying safe and riding the law

Coffee talk Tuesday deals with lawlessness in our cycling culture. Tuesday Coffee Talk allows all of us to engage in community related topics and share your 2 cents worth

Last week on Bike to Work Day (nationally, not locally) a cyclist in Denver ran a stop sign and smashed into a cop car. The cyclist was injured and taken to the hospital.

The Denver Post was the one that reported on it and the comments on their story were interesting and different from what we saw on our facebook page. Yet regardless of which side of the law you stand on this accident is terrible and should be avoided.

So why do so many ride above the law?

Some will say "why should cyclists be held up to a higher standard that cars, look at how many cars speed" (meaning doing a 55 in a 50) or not using a signal. Some will say it is a flow thing and the laws of cars should not be applied to bikes (hence the Idaho stop sign law yet I prefer Germany's version). Some simply don't know how to drive a bike and resort back to how they did it when they were 10 years old. And some just don't give a crap about what anyone thinks and the bike is their tool of anarchy.

This can't be healthy from a culture perspective and from a physical accident perspective. IMO there is no one cycling group, ie "roadies", mountain bikers, commuters, hipsters, etc that is worse than the other.

Are we getting better or as cycling grows will this problem get worse?

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2 Comments

Running a 4 way is not the same as a 2 way

Sounds like this person in Denver ran a 2 way stop sign? That is just flat out dangerous or requires a lot of attention by the cyclists running the sign. Now a 4 way is different, most likely the cars will be at best 5-10 mph in the intersection at the time the cyclists "blows the sign". While this is a much "healthier" intersection to flow through if cars are present it's stupid. Only run the signs if no one is present. Does anyone hear a person scream in an empty forest?

I pretty much always stop and

I pretty much always stop and obey traffic laws. I know what it's like to be behind the wheel and not know what a cyclist is about to do. Too many cyclists switch in to left turn lanes without signaling and run stop signs and lights. It drives me nuts.

Cyclists are already seen as unrelatable by many drivers. I don't see why I'd want to make that worse.