2 cyclists hurt this month

Routt County Riders urges caution as weather warms

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Editor's note: This story has been corrected from its original version. Motorist Kathy Whaley was cited for careless driving resulting in injury for her role in the accident that sent cyclist Wayne Ranieri to the hospital.

As winter gives way to spring, the Routt County Riders bicycle club is urging motorists and cyclists to be mindful of one another. At least two cyclists already have been injured this year in accidents involving vehicles.

Wayne Ranieri, an agent at Steamboat Village Brokers and married father of four, was listed in fair condition at Yampa Valley Medical Center on Monday after being hit while cycling near Lake Catamount on Thursday. Routt County Sheriff's Office records indicate that Kathy Whaley was cited for careless driving resulting in injury for her role in the accident. A phone message left for Whaley was not immediately returned Tuesday.

Wayne Ranieri's wife, Julie, said her husband underwent surgery Friday and has spinal surgery scheduled for Wednesday.

"We don't know how he's going to be," Julie Ranieri said, "so we're just asking for everybody's prayers."

On March 3, a truck struck Partners in Routt County Executive Director Libby Foster on Routt County Road 33. Foster said she suffered minor road rash and a mild concussion and continues to ride her bicycle. Brody Richard Jones was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs, hit-and-run causing injury, careless driving causing injury and driving without a license. He was released from Routt County Jail on $750 bond and is awaiting trial.

"I was just extremely fortunate," Foster said, "but it was definitely a good fright."

C.R. 33 is one of six roads popular with cyclists that Routt County Riders is urging caution on, especially in the early spring before mountain trails dry up and absorb some recreational bicycle traffic off of roads. The others are River Road, which becomes C.R. 14 south of Steamboat Springs; C.R. 129 to Clark, Steamboat Lake and Columbine, U.S. Highway 40 on both ends of the city; Colorado Highway 131 to Yampa; and C.R. 14 over Yellow Jacket Pass to Stagecoach Reservoir and Oak Creek.

Accidents and other conflicts between bicycle riders and motorists have been on the rise in Routt County in recent years.

"We need to remind motorists that bicycles should be treated as slow-moving vehicles," local cyclist Barkley Robinson said in a news release. "That is especially important when passing or making right turns near bicyclists. On the same hand, bicyclists need to obey all the rules of the road that apply to vehicles. Always use hand signals for turning, stop at stop signs and stay as far right as possible."

Foster said her recent scare has made her a more conservative cyclist and that she now can't help but hold her breath every time she sees a black truck on the road.

"Just give us some room," Foster advised motorists. "We'll do our best to stick to the shoulders."

Comments

dave fisher 5 years, 6 months ago

and a three..., two..., one..., queue up the haters...

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sickofitall 5 years, 6 months ago

"arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs, hit-and-run causing injury, careless driving causing injury and driving without a license"

Does this fit your Chevy as well Jason? I would be mortified at having my real name up there given the posts that you make public. This is not a one way road for Jason Reese, it is a public road and you need to respect others. So, do pedestrians get the same treatment from your Chevy as well? Get out of my way or get run over is basically what you are saying?? Luckily Chevies are the biggest POS on the road so maybe yours will break down for the greater good!

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Scott Wedel 5 years, 6 months ago

As someone that has cycled tens of thousands of miles in an urban area, I am stunned at how some cyclists in this area that appear to have very poor bike handling skills will ride higher speed roads with no shoulders.

If a cyclist cannot ride a straight line on the white line then they put themselves and others at risk if they ride on a narrow higher speed road such as 131 south of County Road 14. A cyclist that might drift several feet into the road when there is traffic is risking death.

I am not saying that cyclists have to drive at the edge of the pavement at all times. I am saying there are times in which that skill is important to everyone's safety. And around here there are many people pulling trailers and cyclists need to be careful of not letting the airflow around a passing pickup suck them into the road where they could get hit by the trailer.

When cycling I've had oncoming cars passing cars in their direction use my side of the road. That is not fair and dangerous, but the cyclist is the one that is going to be killed in that situation and so needs to be aware of traffic and able to ride at the very edge of the pavement.

A cyclist needs to be able to look behind without drifting several feet into the road. A cyclist should not ride in traffic or on narrow roads until proficient at that skill.

It just seems to me that there are some cyclists here that have poor road handling bike skills and just because they can ride a bike does not mean it is safe for them to bike on narrow higher speed roads. And so please practice your bike handling skills before riding on roads that might require those skills.

And in reality, it is more likely that those in cars or trucks will be the incompetent driver that makes the situation dangerous. But a cyclist is almost always the loser in any sort of crash. There are times that there is nothing a cyclist can do about a bad driver. There are also times in which in cyclist in a bad position is much more likely to be hit by a bad driver.

A good technique for cyclists is to ride a foot in the roadway and then move to the edge as the cars approach to pass. That tends to cause cars to give the cyclist room from where they were and so the cars don't pass as close to the cyclists.

The absolute worst technique is to ride at the very edge of the road and allow looking behind to cause the cyclist to drift into the road into the path of a passing vehicle.

The next worst technique is to ride several feet into the road and not move to the shoulder.

An extremely tiny number of drivers hate cyclists in general. A good cyclist rides as if they are invisible and creates no reason to be hated. There are unfortunately some cyclists that are either so incompetent or so arrogant that they do not share the road and cause even other cyclists to hate them.

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sickofitall 5 years, 6 months ago

"arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs, hit-and-run causing injury, careless driving causing injury and driving without a license"

Are you sure Spason?

Do you realize that no matter what the situation is, the ped always has the right of way in Colorado? Get ready for a hefty lawsuit if you and your intoxicated Chevy ever hits one. Stop making stupid statements about the public right of way and maybe I won't repeat what you say. I'm sure your opinion represents a miniscul amount of the opinions out there. BTW I keep my name a secret to avoid psycos like yourself. :)

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thalgard 5 years, 6 months ago

Jason Charles Reese, 24, Steamboat Springs -- DUI, possession of paraphernalia, ... Steamboat Springs -- DUI, failed to stop at red light (SSPD) Jason Charles Reese, 24, Steamboat Springs -- DUI, possession of paraphernalia, false reportin ...

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trump_suit 5 years, 6 months ago

So, Jason would you feel the same way if it was your neighbor's dog/horse/cow/child in your way? Why is it that cyclists are fair game for that Chevy of yours?

Cyclists should ALWAYS be aware of their surroundings and have a responsibility to ride single file and in a safe manner. Dodging thru traffic and riding in packs do not fulfill these requirements.

Motorists have the responsibility to manuever their 2000Lb vehicle thru city/county roads in a such a fashion that it NEVER comes in contact with anything. Cyclists included.

Is it so hard to share the road ????? Try a smile and a wave and maybe your day will be brighter too.

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JustSomeJoe 5 years, 6 months ago

I was hoping Jason was being sarcastic in his first post, however it appears not. I'm a frequent road rider and agree with Scott's point. Fault is secondary when you are getting sideswiped into a ditch at 20mph. All the bike education in the world isn't going to save you from a reckless fool behind the wheel of a motor vehicle.

Most of the county's drivers do see bikers on the road and pass safely. My gripe is with the drivers who see no need to slow down or pass safely, as if they have a right to knock a biker in the ditch because they have to use their brake pedal. I think most of us remember the North Routter who commented last year that the road biker was getting run over rather than him having to slow down and pass safely with his truck and horse trailer.

Given Jason's comments here and his alleged, previous irresponsible use of a motor vehicle, I'm hoping Joel Rae or someone from the Sheriff's department gives Jason a courtesy visit to discuss the rules of the road.

One last comment for you Jason. You now have an extra reason to be the most careful driver out there. Imagine what a jury will say if you hit a road biker and your statements here get put into evidence during your trial.

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bubba 5 years, 6 months ago

Windle, let me get this straight - you were speeding, the guy behind you decided to pass you illegally (I am assuming it was a no-passing zone since you said it was a corner), and you are blaming the bicyclist, who was the only person not breaking the law in that situation? Seems to me the self indulgent people risking your life and that of your children are you and the person who tried to pass you illegally.

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trump_suit 5 years, 6 months ago

Say, Sorry. I really would like to read a response to what bubba has said. Windle?

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Scott Wedel 5 years, 6 months ago

Windle was the one being passed by someone going way over the speed limit and he ran into the ditch to make room for the SUV that passed illegally going way over the speed limit. He could have continued on and let the illegally passing SUV and the cyclist far from the shoulder figure it out in the other lane. Windle was hardly being self indulgent when he chose to go off the road to avert a tragedy between two other people. Windle did an act of modest heroism and it is ludicrous and insulting to blame Windle for solving a situation created by two other people.

Yes, the SUV was driving recklessly and would have been in big legal troubles if there had been a collision.

The cyclist maybe could have been cited for failing to ride along the shoulder, but far more important than being not at fault or only partly at fault is that the cyclist would have been smashed by the crash. It does little good to be dead, but resting in peace knowing that it was not your fault.

There are unfortunately some drivers that will attempt to pass regardless of the location. All you can do then is give them as much room as possible and hope. There are many more drivers that will attempt to pass and be surprised by the speed of the cyclist and create a mess by not being able to finish the pass at a safe point.

A cyclist can help drivers since the cyclist is further up the road and often in a better position to see oncoming traffic. The cyclist can indicate that it is not safe to pass while the vehicle is still well back. And then signal to pass now before the driver can see enough to make that decision and so the vehicle can accelerate and be in position to pass as soon as they verify it is safe to pass. A cyclist directing traffic to assist with safe passes is usually appreciated and kindly passed.

One of the great unexpected realities of cycling is that on most roads there are big gaps between being passed. So in an hour of cycling, there might be two minutes spent being passed. Life if much better if those are two uneventful minutes and you enjoy the other 58 minutes.

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mtroach 5 years, 6 months ago

windle, I suppose those two lanes you are referring to is the new shoulder that CDOT put onto CO131. Shoulders, and properly designed roads make using them safer for everyone; autos, hay bale hauling ranchers, oversize haulers, cattle drives, snow plows, oilfield equipment and yes, even TAX PAYING CYCLISTS.

Please in the future drive the speed limit, pay attention to all road users, and CALL THE SHERRIFF when other motorists are driving over the speed limit or driving in a manner that makes our roads unsafe. (even if it's the sherriff himself) The Sherriff/State Patrol can't be everywhere all the times, but a quick call into the office to report an unsafe driver can save a life, and take an unsafe driver off the road. *CSP on your cell.

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bubba 5 years, 6 months ago

Windle, I disagree with your logic that the bicyclist is at fault for assuming too much. Assuming that someone won't be coming around a corner with limited visibility going 20 mph over the speed limit is not 'too much' in my mind. I would have a lot more to lose if a drunken chevy ran a red light and sideswiped me as I went through a green light, but I still drive through green lights. Am I assuming too much? Should I stop running green lights? Why is it different?

And by the way, 40 in a 35 is 5 mph over, not 10. But it is still speeding.

I am not saying cyclists shouldn't be careful, but I think you are being unreasonable. And just for the record, I pay vehicle registration fees for a car, a truck and two motorbikes, and pay taxes on gasoline for them, and property taxes, so if I want to ride my bike, I will ride my bike- I will be just as cautious and courteous to cars as I expect cyclists to be when I am driving.

One final question - if the bike in your story had a motor, registration and taxes, would you feel different about who was at fault? Since I ride both motorized and non-motorized bikes, this seems to be an interesting question. I bet the cycle would have been going faster if it had a motor, and your fast response may not have saved the guy's life. If that were the case, would it still be his fault for assuming that other people will obey safety laws, or would the SUV driver breaking the law be at fault in that scenario?

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Scott Wedel 5 years, 6 months ago

As for taxes: in general, cyclists are part of the solution, not the problem. Cyclists don't need parking lots, the weight of cyclists will never destroy a road or create potholes and even a narrow path can be used by many cyclists.

The shoulders on 131 were added for vehicle safety. People died on that road between 40 and cty rd 14 before the shoulders were added. Cars can use the shoulders to avoid a crash when someone passes unsafely. And it is far safer during the winter when snowpacked and the exact location of the road is not obvious to all drivers.

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jimbo 5 years, 6 months ago

windle...where do you get that bike riders don't pay taxes? That is dumb....i pay plenty of taxes. Should the people who only have kids in school pay taxes for schools or only if you have a fire should your taxes go to the fire dept?

to you it seems we should just get rid of bikes...is that what you propose? Really? Is that a solution to reality? Seems you don't really like to play nice with others..

Jason...I disagree with your statement above that your "not a loser"

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Scott Wedel 5 years, 6 months ago

Bubba, I think the issue is minimizing risk.

Cyclists are small and sometimes drivers will fail to see a cyclist. Motorcyclists also have this problem, but they present a significantly larger profile than a cyclist. Cyclists that assume that drivers see them risk getting hit.

A smart cyclist and driver simply avoids being in bad spots. It is simply not smart for a cyclist to be in the middle of the lane when there is oncoming traffic. If a driver fails to see the cyclist then the cyclist is probably dead.

Do I drive through green lights without expecting to be hit? Yes, but I still look at the crossroad and if I see a vehicle on a collision course then I do not assume they will stop at their red light. I will stop at a green light if I see a car running a red light.

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fartpark 5 years, 6 months ago

Here's my take on the whole tax issue. It is an absolute ripoff to register a car, truck, rv, etc. in this county/state. Now they are also planning on raising the registration fees, so if we need to treat the bicycles as "slow moving vehicles", and they have the same rights as a vehicle, then why isn't there a state mandated registration process the cyclists have to go through? If we want to use our boats, or ride our ATV's/dirt bikes/UTV's there is a registration sticker that must be purchased. The cyclists should have to buy a license, or other type of registration!!!

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Mark Traum 5 years, 6 months ago

Duuudes: Da facts! From CDOT

Bicycles & Traffic In Colorado, motorists and bicyclists share the road. Both have equal rights and responsibilities to obey all traffic laws. Bicycle drivers who violate traffic laws will be subject to the same penalties as drivers of motor vehicles, except that no penalty points shall be assessed against the bicyclist's driver's license. If a bicycle rider is stopped for a traffic violation and the officer has reason to believe that the bicyclist will not appear in court or the officer is unsure of the bicyclist's identity, the officer may arrest the bicyclist and require the bicyclist to post bond.

Motor vehicle driving tips and Laws : • Allow at least three feet between your vehicle and the bicycle to avoid blowing the bicyclist out of control or off the road. • Be patient and wait until it is safe to pass, as you would any other slow-moving vehicle. Be aware that when a road is too narrow for cars and bikes to ride safely side by side, bicyclists can legally ride in or near the center of the lane for more visibility and safety. • Please don't honk your horn. You could startle the cyclist into an accident. • Look to your right before turning to avoid cutting off a cyclist.

99.99% of cyclists have motor vehicles and pay taxes too...

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arnonep 5 years, 6 months ago

First on taxes. Over 95% of all road funds come from gasoline tax. I believe most cyclists would gladly pay a registration fee if it made them safer on the road. Unfortunately that is not and would not be the case. Ignorance and disrespect are the root of the problem. One of the points brought up earlier is near and dear to me. Drivers that pass with a cyclist coming in the other direction. It is illegal, disrespectful and blatantly dangerous. I have had this happen to me countless times and it is terrifying every time. Those of you that know me know that I do not scare easily. In one case I was riding behind my wife and as the assailant started to pass, she moved off the road to avoid the near miss. As she went off the road I noticed she was sinking in the soft shoulder and was able to ride up next to her and keep her from falling into the road. Who knows, but I find it hard to believe that she, the assailant and his passengers, and/or the innocent drivers being passed would not have suffered some sort of incident had she fallen into the road.

On a side note: 3 feet 2 pass Bicycle Safety Bill Faces Challenge for Final Votes in the Colorado House of Representatives the week of March 23 SB 148 is scheduled behind dozens of other bills so the vote will likely be this week.

It's not too late. Please Call Your Representative Today

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upstream 5 years, 6 months ago

Based on the information publicly available the drivers in these 2 incidents were both grossly negligent- one was under the influence and the other apparently not paying attention to what she was doing.

So- I have to wonder why the conversation here is about bicyclists and our bad habits? Come on- let's place the blame where it belongs this time.

The season is early and there will be plently more reasonable opportunities to blame redblooded taxpaying American cyclists for forcing you to slow your guzzler.

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bubba 5 years, 6 months ago

Scott, I agree that minimizing risk is a good thing, and if I see someone on a collision course with me, I try to avoid it, whether I am on my bike and someone is illegally in my lane, or I am driving and someone is going through a red light, I still fail to see the difference.

As upstream pointed out, the drivers in both of the incidents in the story were cited, so it seems that the police would agree with me that cyclists should be able to expect that a car will not be in their lane. I would think that if Windle hadn't swerved and that story had ended tragically, the SUV driver would have been cited too, but that would not be much consolation to the biker.

If there was a law requiring registration of bikes, I doubt it would be much, maybe 20 bucks (that is roughly what an older car or motorcycle costs in this county). I would probably pay that on my road bike and cruiser, but not my mountain bike. That, I would put in my truck and contribute to downtown traffic and parking problems rather than making the quick ride from my house to the trail. The fees would certainly not deter me from riding though, which I suspect is what their proponents are really after!

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aichempty 5 years, 6 months ago

Have any of you cyclists read about the drivers involved in these crashes? Do you read The Record? Don't you understand that we live in a Mecca for pot heads and scofflaws who USUALLY end up getting caught because of a traffic infraction?

It's dangerous enough to be out on our roads in a 5-star crash rated vehicle. And you do it on a bicycle?

Laws won't help you. Locals becoming educated won't help you. People around here openly tolerate substance abuse and employ people off the books, making it a great place for undocumented workers and those without valid drivers licenses. And then you hitch up your spandex moral drawers and lecture US about keeping YOU safe? What an unbelievable joke! You're risking your life every time you go out on the road, and there's not a thing you or the rest of us can do about it until somebody actually gets hit. Why? Because most pot heads, DUIs and people driving under suspension never get caught until something else happens to attract the police, like speeding or mashing a biker into jelly.

What ever happened to the young girl who got hit by an 18-wheeler on CR-129 a while back? She was some kind of champion cyclist. What's she doing now?

We've got people in this county growing pot in their houses and using crystal meth and who knows what else. Do you think they care if they put you in danger? No. Not until they hit you. Then it's too late.

You may think it would be neat to star in your own movie of the week about being hit while cycling in Routt County, but until you've felt bone pain and not been able to walk or even stand in the shower for a few months, if you can stand at all, you won't understand the real dangers. Next time you pull out the bike and decide to ride to Clark, picture yourself being helped to use the bathroom by a stranger, much less make a living. Suing is fine, but people who are careless seldom have enough insurance to cover the Emergency Room bill, and some have none at all. I know from recent experience that surgery for a broken wrist and one night in the hospital cost over $13,000.00. What's the state liability minimum? $25,000? If they have it? How long can you live on $12,000? It won't even pay the tap fees at Stagecoach.

Your troubles aren't over the day you get hit. You're unlikely to get rich. You're likely to lose income as well as suffer for weeks, or maybe for the rest of your life.

Is a bike ride really worth dying for?

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mtroach 5 years, 5 months ago

Like many of the freedom's afforded by our society, the freedom to lawfully ride a bike on public roads is worth slim risk of accidental death. If the other users of the road choose to drive responsibility, biking on public roads is no more dangerous than any other activity. As road users, we are all subject to danger from irresponsible drivers. In a car, or on a bike, or motorcycle the danger faced by irresponsible drivers can happen to anyone at anytime. Let's be totally clear that the dangers on the roads are not from cyclists, ranchers hauling hay, snow plows or cattle drives, but from irrational drivers that grow impatient from slower users and cause dangerous incidents by passing without care, and caution.

Bubba was run off the road by such a driver. Not a cyclist.

You may argue that cyclists have the most to lose due to lack of protection, and should be prevented from riding because of that danger, i would argue that speed, aggression, and inattention to the road are far bigger factors in all traffic related deaths, and something should be done to prevent guys like bubba from being able to go 5 over the limit, and think that that's OK. Restrictors on autos, laws preventing cell phone use without a hands free device, roads designed with space for all users and empowering fellow citizens to report aggressive drivers to the police would go along way toward making roads safer for all users.

PS; Katherene Ingalls was the young cyclist injured on 129 she was back on the podium this year X/C skiing. Way to rebound Katherine!!

" Katherine Ingalls earned a place on the podium after a long period of rehabilitation for injuries she sustained colliding with a semitrailer in July 2007, while bicycling on Routt County Road 129.

Ingalls was the division's top racer in the 1K-sprint race, then finished 10th in the J1 5K classic race.

She was recognized in the event's closing ceremonies with the Dave Quinn Award, which was meant to honor her strong weekend, her sportsmanship and perseverance.

"She's a very determined young woman," Tate said"

reprinted from this pilot story;

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bubba 5 years, 5 months ago

Just to clarify, Windle was run off the road, not me. I was the one arguing that the other driver, not the cyclist was at fault.

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jk 5 years, 5 months ago

mtroach, Restrictors on autos are you serious? What we all have to go 25mph now so no cyclists don't get hurt?? We all learned the rules of the road when we were 16, if you can't keep up with traffic then you create a hazard. I am more than happy to do my part and watch out for cyclists, but that doesn't change the fact they are the ones creating a hazard.

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mtroach 5 years, 5 months ago

jk if the speed limit is 25 then you should drive 25. Excessive speed on twisty poorly designed county roads is what creates hazardous conditions for other users. Here's a fact; Slow moving vehicles have a right to the road, speeders, and impatient drivers create hazards for all road users by passing in an unsafe manner. If the oncomming lane is clear, or there is room on the right hand side of the road for the slow moving vehicle move onto, it's safe to pass. Overtaking a cyclist, or any slow moving vehicle does not need to be hazardous. Only when impatient, aggressive drivers pass without regard to the slow moving vehicle's right to the road and pass without taking time to see if the road is clear, does a hazardous condition exist. The cyclist, or other slow moving vehicle does not create hazard, a hazard is created when you have the combination of an overtaking vehicle, poor road design, and oncomming traffic. I pass slow moving vehicles all the time without creating a hazardous condition for other users, by being patient, taking time to see if the road is clear, and waiting till I have room to safely overtake the slow moving traffic.

If you advocate removing cyclists from RCRoads what about all the other slow moving road users, I have come across ranchers driving hunderds of cattle on our roads using 4-wheelers that are outright banned from on road use, snowplows regularlly work at less than the speed limit, trucks loaded with hay, or oil field equipment, even runners and walkers. Should all traffic that can't go "5 over" be excluded from using our roads?

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jk 5 years, 5 months ago

mtroach, No where did I advocate removing anyone from the road. Nor did I say anything about speeding. All I said was if a person is traveling 10, 15, to 30 mph under the speed limit of a posted road, they are creating a hazard. So you can dream up all of the scenarios you want to but that doesn't change the fact slower traffic is creating the hazard. Let me ask you if I am doing the posted speed limit of 45mph coming over a hill or around a blind curve and you are going 15 mph am I creating the hazard? I am doing the speed limit but one of us still gets injured avoiding the other. Now that makes me the hazard??If you disagree with this then I guess we must agree to disagree. Have a nice weekend and ride safe.

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flower 5 years, 5 months ago

Slow moving vehicles are required to be marked for visability, why not slow moving bicyclists? Most wear dark clothing.

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aichempty 5 years, 5 months ago

Visual recognition of road hazards by drivers approaching from behind is the issue here. Bikers subtend a very small angle compared to a full-size vehicle. A biker is as narrow as a tree, for example, and would not stand out at all to a driver watching for other vehicles except for the motion. Pedaling, in particular, is a visual cue.

How many people never see the deer on the side of the road until one of them jumps across the road. It's the same effect.

As people age, or use drugs, or have other visual impairments, visual acuity decreases. A biker with 20/20 corrected vision doesn't understand that the old man coming up behind may have 20/40 vision or worse, depending on how long it's been since he had a vision test.

Stobe lights on bikes would be a great idea. They should be required for bicycles on any road with a posted speed limit of 35 or greater. This is no different from cars being required to have brake lights. It's a safety measure and it makes sense.

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gary rohrbaugh 5 years, 5 months ago

cell phones , bikes, what more does a town need ? 3rd grade education maybe ?

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2strokesmoke 5 years, 5 months ago

This enforcement issue goes both ways, and not unlike buff pass and Rabbit ears, it has been pretty much left to people participating in the activity to self regulate, laws are only as good as the people enforcing the laws. As for the people this spectrum is enormous, it always amazes me how this issue pretty much motorized to non motorized is so polarizing, whether it is a meth head or a pot smoker (which bridges this spectrum, do the bikers get piss tested?) driving a car or road bikers riding two or three abreast, a lack of good judgment was displayed. I personally dont ride on roads as there are enough trails to keep me occupied, with the amount of commercial traffic in and around all these roads mentioned I dont feel safe whether its my right or not, and as stated above more than likely the cyclist is going to come out worse for the wear.

I understand training for racing events but I dont see the difference between mountain biking and working out at the health and rec. for more cardio, we have the right to engage in a world of activities that doesnt mean we all have the ability too...

And before any of you bikers get in an uproar, stop and ask yourself how many times you have had two beers or glasses of wine then drove home, guess what, a bike swerves out in front of you, you might find yourself defending against a DUI and trying to explain how the bike swerved out as you were passing.

I have been hit three times in my life on a bike, once was by a drunk, and twice by people running stop signs ( luckily they were cars with low bumpers) I have since modified my riding style.

We in steamboat are so lucky or local news is filled with such inane issues such as road bike safety.

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aichempty 5 years, 5 months ago

In Human Factors Engineering, it's a rule of thumb that 90% of perception is expectation. When people pull up to a stop sign, they are looking for cars, not bikes. That's why they don't see bikes; wrong size and shape, and in the wrong place.

This community is the most highly-educated and most self-centered I've ever lived in. The "me-colored" glasses are so obvious it's not even funny. Does being raised in affluence, popular in high school and on the winning team make people think that everyone else is going to automatically defer to them? Confront some kid and you know what they say? "My Dad has lots of lawyers working for him . . . "

The Kennedy family found a law a while back that none of them seem to be able to violate with impunity; the Law of Gravity. No amount of money can protect you from it. Around here, it's the Law of Gross Tonnage that you can't escape. There are plenty of people passing through our community who have no insurance, no personal assets and are in debt to credit card companies; sue them and win, and your judgment is discharged in bankruptcy court. Oops -- now what? The most dangerous man on the road is the one with nothing left to lose, and plenty of him are out there these days.

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mtroach 5 years, 5 months ago

You guys are totally right, I have far too much to lose by riding my bike. And at any time a drunken or simply aggressive and impatientent driver could hit me and take everything away. This forum has opened my eyes that even with laws to protect me, my safty is at risk, and my road riding should be stopped.

But my problem is I enjoy escaping the city and exploring the county roads at a nice slow pace. My only alternative is to drive my car, but the posted speed limits are too high for me to enjoy the scenery, talk on the phone, drink some coffie and still stay on the road. If you see a slow moving truck out on the roads this summer, Please be patient with me. Take time to pass me with care. I won't be on my bike, and I assure you that any aggressive drivers, that pass without care will be run off the road.

Thanks again for finally scaring some sense into me about my crazy ideas about using something as silly as a bike to enjoy the outdoors.

PS: I have some bikes that I'll need to sell to afford the gas for my drives. Anyone interesetd in purchasing some locally made high end bikes? All I see in my garage now is death, and the potential for death. I can't even go in there. (shudder)

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aichempty 5 years, 5 months ago

I've got a Huffy I paid $80 for at the Navy Exchange store in Whidbey Island, Washington ten years ago. Would you like to have that one too? I'll toss in the bell and the saddle baskets I bought at Wal-Mart. You can hang it in your garage much more affordably than the ones you have now.

I'll be out this summer on my cross-country skis on the bike trails. I know I may block the trail, but you guys will slow down and pass me carefully, right? After all, isn't it my right to be out in the forest on cross-country skis? Oh, and I'll probably have at least one dog with me, on a leash of course, so be careful not to try to pass between us on your bike.

Remember; ride friendly!

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jk 5 years, 5 months ago

Aich, what color is that bike?, and what temprature of wax do you use for those skis in July? Don't forget to wear a strobe light, bright colors, and ski in single file with your dog, you don't want to be a hazard. share the trail!! Happy Easter

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mtroach 5 years, 5 months ago

Truthfully, I've been riding three times this week, twice out to the coal mine, and once to Clark. I find drivers very polite, and respectful, half of them wave. On my two hour rides I'm passed by less then 20 cars, most pass in less than 10 seconds. That establishes a 3-5 min window of DANGER in a two hour ride. Not that big of an exposure. Skiing is far more dangerous. More people confined in a smaller space with vast differences in ability, and no way to monitor or judge ability. Any hack can strap on skis and endanger fellow skiers on the mountain without training, or licence.

It seems most of the people with problems/attitudes are on this forum, not on the roads.

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aichempty 5 years, 5 months ago

Roach,

That's very good to hear. It means the bikers are being careful not to p!$$ people off, and that's all that's really required of them.

It also means you're not biking at high-traffic times, which is also good.

Have you ever taken that ride back from Clark when the folks from the campground are trying to get home with their giant pickups and trailers? Lots of out-of-state tags in that bunch. Those are the ones to worry about.

You're also right about the "hack" skiers, but most of them stay on the lower part of the mountain and stick to the gondola. Why? Don't have to ski off the lift! That's also why most of us who are competent on skis don't try to share the slopes with them and come down a different way at the end of the day.

There's going to be a lot of logging in the Willow Creek Pass area this summer, so watch out for those logging trucks. Get one of those babys moving 50 mph and you can jam on the brakes all you want -- it ain't gonna stop quickly without jacknifing, and even then, it can keep moving until friction overcomes momentum. One encounter with one of those makes up for a lot of avoided risk at other times.

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upstream 5 years, 5 months ago

A likely common theme on the gradeschool report cards of many on this thread was the teacher's comment: " has difficulty sharing with others..." They seem to feel a profound psychological discomfort to this day when they have to share "public roads" with other legitimate travelers, most notably, cyclists. It seems that they feel a need to lash out at (and make overt threats of physical violence, too, as Jason did) to those whom they perceive to be in their way on our public roads. Do you guys feel an almost uncontrollable urge to "go postal" while waiting in line behind others at the post office? Your positions are arrogant and hypocritical at best, as the desire to control how other Americans choose to move about on public roads and at the same time curtail their freedoms in doing so, comes through loud and clear. Might does not make right. Just move over a bit and go on your way and let me be on mine. It's not all that difficult or inconvenient to do. Jason; I'm genuinely sorry for all of the pain you suffered as a youth. My advice to you is to get professional help, let go of it and move on... before you do something really stupid in your "big chevy that runs over everything". Let's share the playground kids- there is more than enough to go around.

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jk 5 years, 5 months ago

ok, so what happens the first time a bus pulls out and runs over one of our friendly little bicycle riders.? Who wins that battle?? Remember it is everyones playground and the bus drivers have the law on their side now.

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mtroach 5 years, 5 months ago

jk, Thanks for the extra dose of fear mongering. Please keep in mind that the new law requires drivers to yield to busses entering traffic, That means you have to stop your car to let busses into traffic on Lincoln av. even if it means your foward progress is slowed. Keep attentive especally by McDonald's where the bus route comes off the curb and the speed limit is 45mph. Care to guess how much damage rear-ending a city bus will do. Bus wins every time. Scared Yet!!!

aich, thanks for the warning, I think that if we reevaulate road usage, drivers pulling trailers should be required to be licenced to be able to tow. Those log haulers are trained/licenced, but those campers are not, Why??

Another question is why our county allowed the state parks to develop SBLake without a plan to address the additional traffic that their development put onto our tiny county road? I would ask the same about the developments along cr129 inside the city, a new major industrial hub was created between 7/11 and Duckles without any additional road development. That's just poor planning, and the traffic created by these developments will have to be addressed with tax money while the developer that created it walks away with the profit.

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jk 5 years, 5 months ago

Roach, I am scared for you cyclists. I am easily seen in my vehicle and I follow the traffic laws, not a statement most cyclists can claim, plus if that bus pulls out in front of me it's a trip to the body shop for some bondo and fresh paint. You however will not be so easily repaired. During this re-evaluation process will we also require cyclists to be licensed, will they also require a special license to pull their little kiddies in a trailer behind their bike? And as far as your other post above, any hack can just as easily get on a bike with no training or license and endanger everyone. Happy Closing Day ski, ride, cycle, travel,and hunt easter eggs with care!!

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