Thursday, 29 October 2015

Lawful or Predictive Driving?

I've had some struggles with biking this fall, when it comes to biking along the side of cars, near stop signs, etc..   First, let me say that if I see a stop sign, I stop.  If there is a red light, I stop.  Trying to be lawful.   However, with this type of behavior, I've almost been hit and even yelled at.. Why?  Well because it's expected that a bike will just go through the stop sign on a back road.

So I question myself, when is it right to be Lawful and when is it right to be unlawful but predictable.

I'll have to come back to this question but it's something that has been bothering me for a while.


  1. The problem with trying to be predictive, is some people expect you to run a stop sign, while others expect you to stop.

    I always follow traffic laws. But when I ride I'm usually insured and want to maintain that insurance in case of an accident. But there's also very few stop signs and no traffic lights when you ride way out in the boonies.

    Where you live I can understand why. Some of those lights do not take into account bike traffic even with that path running through (A path I might add, which is almost unusable by road bikes because of constant curbs). I remember standing waiting at a red light for 5 minutes with several other cyclists -- the light cycled a few times but never gave us our light, so everyone ended up going through the red.

    IMO the best way to fix this is advocacy. People have an easier time being lawful if the infrastructure takes them into account.

    1. Yes, there are tons of lights that don't have a cycle or sensor that detects bikes. I always try to obey the law but I've been given the dirty look when I stop at a stop sign and the other side is trying to turn. If I was a car, I would stop and then go, as the person going straight has the right of way. But with a bike, now I am slowing them down since I came to a stop and now I have to take off again. Sure I am holding them back by a second or two but that doesn't stop people from getting upset. However, if I would just coast to the stop sign, then continue to pedal, I would of saved the driving that is turning a few seconds and they would of been happy.

      Wait, you have insurance for your bike rides? I've never heard of this...

    2. I don't disagree with your description of the physics involved. In fact it is part of the argument for implementation of the Idaho Stop. But that's where the advocacy part comes in; getting people to codify it into law, or educating the masses on why it's a good thing.

      The other side of the problem, people getting upset from being delayed by a second or two. It used to make me cranky too, especially if I was driving to work. But now I realize the real problem; I didn't give myself sufficient time to take into account delays. If I'm in a rush, that's no fault of other drivers, pedestrians, bicycles or tractors. :D

      Yes, I have insurance for my rides, it is through my local club. All club rides are insured, whether they are regularly scheduled ones or a pick up ride, as long as it's posted on a club forum and extended to club members.