bicycles in the burg

Brent Finnegan -- November 18th, 2006

Last week it was the sheriff cruiser that hit the taxi, and now this…

Last night, I happened to be on the corner of Gay and High Street in time to see paramedics carrying a cyclist on a stretcher into an ambulance, while police picked a mangled bike off the road. According to TV3, a teenage driver hit the cyclist as s/he walked the bike across High Street.

As far as I could tell, the bike did not have lights on it. The windshield of the car looked pretty smashed in.

I ride my bike to work maybe half the year, and luckily have been alert and aware enough not to get hit yet (knock on wood). But people in this area do not know how to drive around bicycles, and many cyclists don’t pay enough attention to the cars on the road. On my bike, I’ve nearly been hit half a dozen times by drivers that think a green light means they don’t have to check the crosswalk before making a right turn. In my car, I’ve almost been hit by drivers swerving into my lane to avoid hitting cyclists riding in the street.

It’s like the motorcycle wreck or the sheriff that hit the taxi last Friday — people need to make more of an effort to be more alert in town. These sorts of incidents are becoming all too common in the burg these days.

-finnegan

6 Responses to “bicycles in the burg”

  1. maryloohoo says:

    Right on, honey!

  2. maryloohoo2 says:

    What’s with the censorship, honey? I had to create a new name to leave comments. What is the deal? I tried to leave a comment saying “Right on,” but my comments have been blocked. Hmmmm…

  3. Josh says:

    I know this sounds awful, but I dread seeing cyclists around town. The warm and fuzzy feelings of wanting to commend people for making environmentally smart transportation choices are erased by safety concerns. Things are getting better, with new bicycle lanes popping up, but for now I often question the sanity* of those willing to risk the streets of Harrisonburg on their bikes.

    *Sorry Brent :-)

  4. kk says:

    I repeat the same thing to myself regularly – that local traffic does not know how to handle bicycles – but we do ask for it both ways, to be treated as vehicles and non-vehicles by turns. the thing that frightens me most is when I’m driving and I see a bicyclist speeding down the wrong side of the road at night with no lights – it seems like they have no idea what danger they put themselves in (not to mention perpetuating funny driver-expectations). I saw the road blocked off Fri. night, and wondered what happened.

  5. finnegan says:

    Hey, just for the record, I have front & tail lights, and I stick to the sidewalks.

  6. admin says:

    regarding censorship — sometimes comments get stuck in the “approve cueue” as questionable content, and I don’t know why. It’s supposed to filter out spam and inappropriate language, but ends up filtering out random comments.

    It’s happened to comments left by Gxeremio and forehead on keyboard, as well as finnegan (me).

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