We all travel life’s roads. I stand before you to ask for your cooperation in providing safe space for cyclists. When you see a cyclist on the road, please, yield to life.
–David Zabriskie, world-class cyclist and founder of Yield to Life
1. Different but Equal
In all states, cyclists are deemed by law to be drivers of vehicles and are entitled to the same rights on the road as motorists. Expect cyclists on the road. Watch for cyclists on the road. Treat them as you would any slow-moving vehicle.
2. Patience, not Patients
Patience, especially on the road, is a virtue, and can save lives.
Your patience may involve:
- Waiting until it is safe to pass a bicycle and refraining from tailgating.
- Giving cyclists the right of way when the situation calls for it.
- Allowing extra time for cyclists to go through intersections.
- Recognizing road hazards that may be dangerous for cyclists and giving cyclists the necessary space to deal with them. In conditions where there is not enough room for a cyclist to ride to the right, they are allowed to ride closer to the lane of traffic, and sometimes even in the lane of traffic.
Never engage in conduct that harasses or endangers a cyclist. Above all: Be tolerant. Be understanding. Be careful.
3. A Passing Grade
Do not pass a cyclist until you can see that you can safely do so. You should allow ample space between your vehicle and the bicycle and make sure you do not place the cyclist in danger. If you pass too closely the drag from your car can pull a cyclist off course and cause the rider to swerve out of control.
4. The Right Behavior
Watch out for cyclists when you are turning right. A bicyclist may well be to the right of you and planning to go straight at the same intersection. Do not speed ahead of the bicyclist thinking you can negotiate the turn before they reach your car. The cyclist may be going faster than you think and, as you slow to make the turn, the cyclist may not be able to avoid crashing into the passenger side of your vehicle.
5. To The Left, to The Left
Also look for cyclists when making a left-hand turn. Cyclists who are crossing straight through the same intersection in the opposite direction may be going faster than you realize. It is particularly dangerous on a descending slope, when cyclists pick up more speed.
6. A Back-up Plan:
Bicycles, and the people who drive them, come in all shapes and sizes. When backing out of your driveway always look to see if someone is riding in your path. Children on small bikes might be hard to see. Drive slowly and look carefully.
7. Egress Etiquette
After parallel parking, make sure the coast is clear for opening the car door to exit. Make sure there are no cyclists riding alongside your car or fast approaching. By using the rear view mirrors and by turning around, a driver can spot an approaching cyclist and circumvent a disaster. A cyclist cannot anticipate when a driver will open a door, but a driver can easily detect a cyclist who may be in the line of danger.
Cyclists have a rightful spot on the road. Cyclists also positively impact the environment with each revolution of their wheels by opting to ride rather than drive. Do not resent cyclists. Replace frustration with a smile every time to see a cyclist.
9. Honing Your Horning Habit
Do not to honk unnecessarily at cyclists. If the need does arise to honk your horn to alert a cyclist that you are about pass, do so at a respectable distance. If you are too close, the noise itself can cause a cyclist to lose his or her bearings and create a hazardous situation for both you and the cyclist.
10. Try it, You’ll Like it
If you can’t beat them, join them. Ride a bike. It may just change your life. Riding is good for you and good for your environment. At the very least, it will give you a better appreciation for the problems cyclists face everyday on the road with respect to motorists.
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Besides the hot Belgian action this weekend there’s this other race in the Ardennes of France that’s happening this weekend too: The Jens! Invite aka Criterium International. You know the basic scheme:
1) Saturday there’s your basic sprinter’s stage though last year Laurens Ten Dam managed to stay away on the break. Barely- he won by 10 seconds over the pack- but he did stay away. There are three climbs on this stage that does make that break possible.
2A) Sunday is a twofer. The morning is the “Mountain” stage, a short 98.5 km romp in the Ardennes with nine Ardennes-type climbs- eight Cotes and one Col. One of the early climbs is of the 9% range- and it reappears near the end too. This is where Jens! should launch himself.
2B) Sunday afternoon gives us an 8.3 km ITT that will give us the final selection. Pretty flat but kinda twisty. Last year in the rain the riders were Very Careful on their bikes. That’s it- a very functional stage race that in truth is used by almost all of the riders as on-the-job training. Except Jens! of course, who doesn’t know the meaning of the word, “training.” So he keeps winning the thing. Four times, now. Can he win a fifth?
Here’s the startlist and it looks like Saxo Bank is very serious in helping Jens! again.
Here’s the final GC from last year so you can get an idea of who might be competitive here.
Looking at that list, only Monfort among the top non-Saxo boys is back. Rabobank isn’t here at all while Caisse d’Epargne is bringing a B team. (Somewhere in france, Oscar is feeling… depressed right now.) Looking further at the startlist, I could see Garmin, Columbia (Albasini, Monfort, Grabsch), Astana (Kloden and Brajkovic) and some others (Hivert? Casar? Karpets? Nocentini? Astarloza?) who might combine the TT/climby skills in enough abundance to bother Jens!.
4:00 PM-5:00 PM (local times)
* Aluminum brake and tire surface provides smooth all weather stopping and high tire security
* Hybrid-toroidal rim shape for airodynamic properties
* Durable anodized hubs with low friction japanese bearings
* Hand build in the USA
* Quick release skewers are included
* Recommended maximum rider weight is 220 pounds
Hub/Brake Compatibility Rim Brake
Rim Depth 82mm
ISO Diameter 622
Valve Length Long 56+ mm
Wheel Size: 700c
Tire Type: Clincher
Front Wheel Type: Road
Front Hub Spacing: 100mm
Front Axle: Type 9×1
Spoke: Info Silver
Rim: 700c Clincher 82mm
Skewer: Included Yes
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If passed, this will be Louisiana’s first Law to protect the rights of cyclists. Not only will the Law’s verbiage outline cyclists’ equal right to our roads but it deems motorists must give 3 feet of space when passing cyclists and it prohibits harassment of cyclists.
The Law will serve as a catalyst for education, signage, public service announcements, etc… making the general public aware of the rights of cyclists, saving lives around our state.
How can you help? Here are 3 simple steps:
- Go to www.louisiana3feet. com
- Click the first red link to thank Representative Michael Jackson(larep061@legis. state.la. us)
- Click the next red link to find out your Louisiana House and Louisiana Senate seat’s e-mail addresses by going to their personal pages. Write them a note asking them to vote FOR the Colin Goodier Bicycle Protection Act in the upcoming legislative session.
http://www.legis. state.la. us/district/ zipcode.asp
For more about Colin Goodier, please visit a blog dedicated to his memory:
http://colingoodier .blogspot. com/
Check the LA 3 Feet website ( www.louisiana3feet. com ) frequently to find out the latest news. Updates will be posted on the Home Page or on the Forum. Check out the state’s legislative website to see the status of the Bill.