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Discussion Starter #101
Tickets Issued for "Dooring"

News Don't Door Cyclists: It's the Law Posted by Benjamin Sutton on Thu, Oct 28, 2010 at 3:08 PM

After consecutive months in which twenty-somethings have been killed as a result of being "doored" when motorists opened the door of a parked car without looking, sending them into the paths of large vehicles like buses and trucks (one in Clinton Hill, the other in East Harlem), City Room takes a closer look at the actual laws on the books about proper door-opening. Turns out there is a Vehicle and Traffic Law that pertains specifically to the opening and closing of vehicle doors. It gets phrased differently—in the case of Krystal Francis, whose door sent 23-year-old Jasmine Herron under the wheels of a bus on Atlantic Avenue, the charge was “opening and closing vehicle doors,” but for the driver whose door sent 27-year-old Marcus Ewing into the path of a truck on East 120th Street on Friday morning, the summons called it “unsafely exiting a vehicle.” Confusingly, those mean the same thing...

A spokesperson for the New York State DMV shared an excerpt from Section 1214 of the State Vehicle and Traffic Law with CityRoom, and it reads:

Opening and closing vehicle doors. No person shall open the door of a motor vehicle on the side available to moving traffic unless and until it is reasonably safe to do so, and can be done without interfering with the movement of other traffic, nor shall any person leave a door open on the side of a vehicle available to moving traffic for a period of time longer than necessary to load or unload passengers.

Because it's hard to determine such subjective things as how much time is required for passengers to get in and out of a car, the law can usually only be enforced when an officer sees it being broken. Or, when its flouting results in a car accident and/or the death of a cyclist. As of Friday 147 tickets, which run up to $150 a pop, had been handed out across the state this year (compared to 179 for all of 2009) for improperly opening or closing vehicle doors, although New York City doesn't keep a tally of such cases.

As someone who's come terrifyingly close to being doored countless times, but never taken the plunge, it's something that I'm constantly aware of while biking, trying to spot silhouettes in parked cars and curbed cabs in case a driver or passenger is moving to get out. I'll also say that for all the antipathy between cyclists and cab drivers, the latter tend to be very good about warning passengers not to open their doors if a cyclist is approaching—presumably because of the fines and lawsuits that might result. In summation, "to door": officially a verb, officially against the law.
 

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mtbxplorer said:
As of Friday 147 tickets, which run up to $150 a pop, had been handed out across the state this year (compared to 179 for all of 2009) for improperly opening or closing vehicle doors, although New York City doesn't keep a tally of such cases.
Yay, NY! The thought of $150 leaving your checking account ought to be enough to start some neurons firing.
 

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Discussion Starter #103
Bike commuter gets 6 1/2 years

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — An Alaska man has been sentenced to prison for robbing a bank and fleeing the scene on a bicycle, which he then crashed into a police car.

Christopher Todd Mayer of Anchorage was sentenced Friday to 6 1/2 years in federal prison.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle French said the 47-year-old man robbed a Wells Fargo branch bank in Anchorage on May 27 and took $1,731.

Mayer was arrested a short distance from the bank after speeding away on a bike.

Police said Mayer crashed his bike into a patrol car, slid across the hood and took off running. He was detained half a block away about five minutes after the robbery.
 

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And the moral of the story...

...is that though cycling pays off in so many ways, crime isn't one. (Crime STILL doesn't pay.)

Follow up on previous story...

Did not realize it was hours after she got home, until she called. You have to suspect too drowsy or too drunk to be driving, and her not reporting and leaving the scene was in essence destroying evidence. Apparently in many states, you can run over cyclists killing and maiming them with little risk. It is lucky we aren't required to wear Bull's eyes!

Apparently, pedestrians and kids in strollers are fair game, too
 

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Discussion Starter #105
Bike-commuting judge returns to work 3 mos after hit by truck

Vermont judge returns to job after being struck by a truck while bicyclingSunday, November 7, 2010

BRATTLEBORO -- A Vermont judge who presides over courts in two counties is back at work after he was hit by a pickup while riding his bicycle.

Sixty-one-year-old John Wesley presides over Superior Court in Windham and Bennington counties. He often commutes on his bicycle and was struck Aug. 6 while heading home. Police reports indicate the driver didn't see him because of the glare of the setting sun and that the driver received a citation.

Wesley, who had surgery to his leg, told the Brattleboro Reformer that other judges acted as backup for hearings, as did members of the Vermont Bar Association. He said he was able to read files at home electronically on some cases.
 

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rodar y rodar said:
Good God! Who could ever have the nerve to do that?!?
Well, I thought it was real nice of Soma to give him a free frameset... Ohhh! You mean the heartless 'bastid'! :madmax:

Well, don' take no nerve if'n ya hain't got no heart! :rolleyes: :rant:

Even with cops present, if you just walk the bike off, like you are moving it to a safer place (but out of sight behind the fire truck) or like it's yours, the poor schmuck being tied to the gurney (because both knee caps are fractured, one of the most painful of breaks, I understand) isn't likely to get a view of you or be able to say "Hey! That's my bike!" with an O2 mask clamping down on his face. :???:

( In my accident decades ago, I wasn't in pain and got a promise from an officer that police would wait for Kathryn to get the remains of my bike and appraise her of what hospital they took my body to (the message delivered to her was almost that bad, public interaction wasn't their long suit).

I assume he had to have OTB'd and hit knees first into the vehicle or on the road, for the bike to obviously be so little damaged (no pancaked/crushed front wheel splayed fork legs, etc.:eek:

Real good job of the responding officers to secure the accident scene and evidence. Barney Fife at work. I mean, just because the cyclist is living as the ambulance heads out, that is no guarantee he doesn't get a blod clot as a result of the injuries. If a cyclist dies of complications of an accident with an at-fault driver's vehicle, that bike would be evidence in a motor manslaughter case. I hope someone's Police butt got kicked up to about their Adam's apple by the Powers that be. I mean, just how hard is it to keep bystanders from walking off with evidence from an accident scene? Makes the whole department look like the Keystone Kops, not Kansas City Kops..:eek:ut:

If I were the cyclist, I'd submit the rest of the bill to rebuild the bike to the Police Department. Maybe have the media along when you submit the bill...:D :winker:
 

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Discussion Starter #110
Good Samaritan's Bike not Safe Either....

Bike stolen from good samaritan (Bristol UK)
ADDED: Today 10:22

Police are investigating the theft of a bike from a cyclist who had stopped to help someone.

The theft happened at around 8.20am on Friday 26th November, 2010. A cyclist had stopped on Wells Road, Bristol, to help a man who was having a seizure on the side of the road. Whilst she was doing this someone stole her Carrera mountain bike.

An investigation has begun to identify the person responsible for the theft.

Speaking about the theft, PC Gareth Davies said: "This incident happened on the side of a busy road during rush hour. I am sure people in the area would have noticed the incident and may have seen the bike being stolen or being ridden away from the area. The victim had stopped to help a man in need and someone has taken advantage of her compassion to steal her bike. This was a heartless act and we will do everything we can to identify the person responsible and make them face the consequences of their actions."

Anyone who has information about the incident or has been offered a black Carrera mountain bike for sale in suspicions circumstances is asked to contact Avon and Somerset Police on 0845 456 7000. Alternatively, phone the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555111. They never ask your name or trace your call.
 

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I hope the recovery is successful, but most officers here find it hard to tell an ultralight road racer from a Pugsley. So when the owner of Yellow Jersey saw a bike reported stolen from his store, rolling by, he caught the guy and took the bike back, only to be arrested by two officers who saw the 'theft' on their donut and coffee break across the street. Ironic. It got straightened out. Had to be embarrassing for the cops. I mean, the bike had been ridden in the open for a couple of weeks and no officers found it, but they were right there in the nick of time to interfere with the owner's recovery.
 

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Discussion Starter #112
Study Finds Bike Commuters Suffering Variety Of InjuriesRob Manning |
November 15, 2010 | Portland, OR

Nearly one in five bike commuters complained of experiencing at least a minor injury on the streets of Portland. Rob Manning reports on a year-long study that’s just been released.



More than 17 percent of bike commuters surveyed for an Oregon Health and Science University study reported an injury while cycling between fall 2007 and summer 2008.

But only five percent said the injuries were severe enough to require medical attention.

The study’s authors said the results should fuel investments in safer streets for bikes.

Mark Lear supervises bike safety at the Portland Bureau of Transportation.

Mark Lear: “I think it is a strong call to action that we really need to pay attention, not only to the new infrastructure that we’re adding to the system, but to how we’re maintaining the existing infrastructure.”

Lear says potholes and piles of leaves that may be inconvenient for cars can pose safety hazards for bicyclists.

But Lear says overall – the study’s findings that a bike commuter could expect a minor injury once every five years, and a serious injury once every twenty, aren’t that surprising.


© 2010 OPB
 

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Meah! I've learned my lesson the hard way about leaves/ man hole covers/ and especially wooden bridges. I wonder if a cyclist ever got rammed by a deer! I hope not- but I try not to spook them when I'm commuting home in the dark alone in the woods. Just me and the deer!
 

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mtbxplorer said:
Study Finds Bike Commuters Suffering Variety Of Injuries...More than 17 percent of bike commuters surveyed for an Oregon Health and Science University study reported an injury while cycling between fall 2007 and summer 2008. ...Lear says potholes and piles of leaves that may be inconvenient for cars can pose safety hazards for bicyclists. © 2010 OPB


Obviously doesn't include barked shins and chainring gashes. :D

Potholes can be sneaky especially with some leaf litter or dirt to hide them. Like a miniature pit trap for cyclists.

Deer as in Stag in rut: avoid, they are a little crazy then. A dislocated shoulder is a better option than meeting the points of a big buck up close and personal.
 

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Discussion Starter #118
Do you commute before breakfast?

From the NY Times

December 15, 2010, 12:01 am Phys Ed:
The Benefits of Exercising Before Breakfast
By GRETCHEN REYNOLDS

The holiday season brings many joys and, unfortunately, many countervailing dietary pitfalls. Even the fittest and most disciplined of us can succumb, indulging in more fat and calories than at any other time of the year. The health consequences, if the behavior is unchecked, can be swift and worrying. A recent study by scientists in Australia found that after only three days, an extremely high-fat, high-calorie diet can lead to increased blood sugar and insulin resistance, potentially increasing the risk for Type 2 diabetes. Waistlines also can expand at this time of year, prompting self-recrimination and unrealistic New Year’s resolutions.

But a new study published in The Journal of Physiology suggests a more reliable and far simpler response. Run or bicycle before breakfast. Exercising in the morning, before eating, the study results show, seems to significantly lessen the ill effects of holiday Bacchanalias.

full story at http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/...ercising-before-breakfast/?src=me&ref=general
 

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Discussion Starter #119 (Edited)
How do you "share a lane" with a 26-wheeler?

CHP: Alpine Road fatal collision caused by cyclist's 'unsafe' turn into big-rigBy Jesse Dungan
Daily News Staff Writer

Posted: 12/21/2010 05:30:14 AM PST
Updated: 12/21/2010 07:29:06 AM PST

A crash that killed a 47-year-old bicyclist from Los Altos Hills last month was caused by an unsafe turn she made as she headed down Alpine Road alongside a 26-wheel truck, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The Nov. 4 collision with the big rig claimed the life of Lauren Ward, a mother of two and an active community member who friends and family have described as an avid bicyclist. The crash was the third fatal collision for the big rig's driver, Gabriel Manzur Vera.

In each of the crashes, Vera was determined not to be at fault.

According to a redacted CHP report released Monday night, Vera was driving his truck west on Alpine Road in the right lane between 10 and 15 mph at about 3:40 p.m. and Ward was to the immediate left of the vehicle sharing the lane. Ward, who was riding at an unknown speed, "unsafely turned" her Trek bicycle and fell to her right side, the report states.

The big rig continued and its tires struck Ward, who was pronounced dead at the scene.

The 33-page report shows that Ward caused the crash by making the turn, said CHP spokesman Art Montiel, but investigators were unable to determine why she turned.

"We know it was caused by an unsafe turn," he said. "We don't know and we may never know what actually caused her to make that unsafe turn."

The report included a summary of the investigation and statements Vera made to authorities.

The trucker told the CHP the collision happened as he was moving from the right westbound lane into a lane that turned right onto southbound Interstate Highway 280. Vera told the CHP he had his right blinker on and was looking at his right rear view mirror, but when he looked forward he heard a "bump."

Vera realized he had collided with Ward, pulled over and called 911.

He told the CHP he thought another vehicle passed his truck on the left shortly after he pulled away from the stop sign at the northbound Highway 280 on-ramp. But he couldn't recall how much time passed between the point the vehicle drove past and when he felt the bump.

Montiel said investigators never found any eye witnesses to the crash and couldn't rule out the possibility that another vehicle may have been indirectly involved in the collision.

The redacted report didn't include sections titled "cause" and "recommendations," which Montiel said were withheld for legal reasons.

However, the investigation shows that Vera was not at fault, he said.

"We can conclude there was nothing that the truck driver did that caused her to fall into the pathway of the moving truck," Montiel said.

Vera was also involved in a fatal crash in 2007 in Santa Cruz. In that collision, his 26-wheel truck struck a popular Pacific Collegiate School teacher named John Myslin at the intersection of Mission and Bay streets. Vera was making a right turn when Myslin tried to pass him on the right.

Police determined Vera wasn't at fault in that crash.

Myslin's parents, however, sued and in March, Vera and Randazzo Enterprises settled the wrongful death suit for $1.5 million.

Vera's first fatal crash happened Dec. 31, 2003, on Highway 1 in Monterey County, according to CHP records. He was driving on Highway 1 through Moss Landing when another vehicle driven by Annette McDaniel, 53, reportedly crossed into oncoming lanes and struck his truck head-on. The Monterey County Coroner's Office reported at the time McDaniel had been weaving in and out of her lane and crossed the center line before colliding with the 26-wheeler. She was killed in the crash.

Ward's family has hired an attorney, John Feder, to conduct a separate investigation into the latest crash. Prior to the release of the CHP report Monday, Feder said he believed the agency's Multidisciplinary Accident Investigations Teams was also possibly investigating the collision.

Ward's husband, Bob, declined to speak with a reporter when reached by phone Monday.
 
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