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Define irresponsible riding(30 posts)

Define irresponsible ridingWoof the dog
Nov 10, 2002 6:43 PM
It is fun, but what should one not do?

Let this thread be a way to enlighten some of us of certain things.


woof the dog.
re: Define irresponsible ridingroadcyclist
Nov 11, 2002 3:55 AM
The list is TOO LONG. Just a few are - riding against traffic. riding on sidewalks. riding while intoxicated. weaving and/or abrupt braking and/or overlapping wheels in a paceline. riding in the dark without lighting. and the list goes onandonandonandon.
Easy: #1 is don't run red traffic lights or stop signs. (ntxt)RickC5
Nov 11, 2002 6:18 AM
Failure to act like a vehicle at ALL timesAllez Rouge
Nov 11, 2002 7:04 AM
It's easy to think up a long list of things a responsible cyclist shouldn't do, like running red lights, riding against traffic, turning without signaling, etc. But riding irresponsibly also includes NOT doing the things a competent road-going cyclist SHOULD do, such as "taking the lane" when necessary, queuing up with the cars in the left lane when making a left turn rather than any other roundabout method, and many more.

IOW, don't let the other vehicles on the road push you around and relegate you to second-class status.
Easiest way to get respect on the road is...biknben
Nov 11, 2002 8:59 AM act like and respect the other road users. Stopping at lights and stop signs is obvious. Other things are more subtle but make a difference. In my area, there are turn lanes at many intersections. If I'm making a left I will get in the left turn lane and execute the turn as if I was a car.

In a case where there is a right turn lane and I'm continuing straight, I will move left and ride on the right side of the lane going straight. It may seem awkward at first but it is very clear where I plan to go. It also eliminates the need for someone to cut me off in order to make the right. They just go to the right lane and make the right as if I'm not there.
Woo hoo! In the Boston area this means.....Nigey
Nov 11, 2002 10:05 AM
Wicked pissah!!!! So you should act like other road vehicles to not be irresponsible..... this means when I'm on my bike in the Boston area:

I don't have to signal, mere psychic thought transmission is enough! Also, I can save weight by getting rid of those shiny reflective thingies (though the vanity mirror can stay).

Don't have to bother with rules concerning rotaries (a.k.a. roundabouts). No one else knows the rules, why the heck should I have to?

Sudden braking or weaving around the road IS the sign of a normal functioning Boston native behind a wheel. It's hard to shave/pluck eyebrows/read a book/drink/talk on cell phone when you have to look at that road stuff with those white lines in front of you. Darned inconvenient.

Regularly pull out in front of people, but not fast enough as to spill the regulah Dunkin' Donuts extrah lahhhrge.

Treat parking lots as a dare to go as fast as possible with a blindfold on, crossing as many white or yellow painted lines as possible (more so around Xmas in mall parking lots though).

And you can go on.....sadly, acting like a road vehicle is not necessarily a good idea in all areas.
Oops...forgot about MASSholes...biknben
Nov 11, 2002 11:36 AM
They have rules all their own.

JK of course. I've spent time riding in Boston. Never seemed any worse than Jersey. Then again Jersey doesn't have a great Rep either.

In Boston, my biggest fear was getting lost. Darn streets go every which way.
Funny experience when in MASSTig
Nov 11, 2002 12:29 PM
About 11 years ago I spent 3 weeks driving and riding all around Westford, Chelmsford, and down towards and in Boston. While driving I was treated like a dawg. While riding I was treated with much more respect! I have no idea what it is like now though.
re: Define irresponsible ridingtrekkie1
Nov 11, 2002 7:08 AM
1. breaking traffic laws (stop signs/lights, not staying to the right, not signaling, insufficient lighting)

2. riding unpredictably or unsafely near other riders (swerving, overlapping wheels, braking unpredictably, improper lines through turns, speed variation, standing and punting the following rider)

3. riding rudely around cars (riding two or more abreast and blocking traffic, flipping off, not waving on)

4. generally, not being a good PR person for the sport
"Waving" pros and consAllez Rouge
Nov 11, 2002 7:28 AM
Okay, potential hot topic.

I never, and I do mean NEVER, wave cars around me, or in any other way signal to the operator of any other vehicle what *I* think *he* should do. Not my place. Not my responsibility. I am in charge of my vehicle; every other operator is (at least theoretically) in charge of his. If I signal to another operator that I think conditions are safe for him to do something, and he does it, and it turns out it was NOT safe, I'm on the hook legally. No thanks.

You don't wave to other drivers to indicate what they should do when you're driving your car, and you shouldn't do it on your bicycle, either. LET THE OTHER GUY MAKE UP HIS OWN MIND.
I wave all the time, both in my car & on the bike.Scot_Gore
Nov 11, 2002 7:43 AM
It's a form of communication, just like turn signals, reverse lights, and horns. If I pull up to a 4 way stop and it's not abundantly clear who's "next". I wave, as do other drivers I've seen. I've found the more communication the better off all parties are. Works in my marriage, works in my commute.

my 2 cents

Four-way stops are a little differentAllez Rouge
Nov 11, 2002 7:56 AM
It's just between you and one other vehicle, trying to sort out who goes next (there may be other vehicles present, but I cannot recall having EVER been at a four-way stop when there was an actual "tie" between more than two vehicles. I suppose it could happen). In a case like that I too will wave ... actually what I do is point at the other driver: "Your turn." In most cases I'm just reinforcing what the law already says, that in the case of a tie the vehicle to the right goes first. Many drivers either don't know this, or don't practice it.

I agree wholeheartedly that more communication is better. But I limit my communications to signaling my OWN intentions, avoid signals that could be construed as telling the other guy what to do. A four-way stop is the only exception to this policy I can think of.
Nov 11, 2002 9:21 AM
Waving at intersections is mostly about good PR. I often will wave others on, even if it is my turn. I think that helps to counter some of the bad PR generated by cyclists blowing through intersections in front of drivers. Sometimes I wave if it isn't necessarily a tie, but it's close enough to be ambiguous. Waving removes the ambiguity. That makes it safer.

Sometimes drivers will hang behind when there clearly is enough room to pass. Either they think we are very unpredictable, or they just don't realize that the lane is sufficiently wide enough for both of us. When I'm certain it's safe, I'll wave them on. Again, good PR. I'd not do it on a blind turn or corner, so the chances of an accident are very remote.
I'm with you on this one!K-Man
Nov 11, 2002 8:22 AM
I NEVER wave cars on when I'm on my bike or in my vehicle. Not taking the chance that what they see and what I indicate may be two different things causing an accident and possible injury. Rather have a live person cuse me out than having to look at a dead persons face.

re: Define irresponsible ridingPEDDLEFOOT
Nov 11, 2002 8:16 AM
I agree with the idea that communication is probably the most important principle.Let others around you know your intentions before hand so they are both aware of your presence and your intentions.I try to signal any change of direction or action I'm about to make.

I also think that you should try to intergrate yourself into the flow of traffic as much as possible.Don't become an obstacle for vehicles.Take your part of the road and stay there.Don't start weaving in and out of your line if you don't have to.Unecassary movement seems to rattle drivers more than anything.
Being totally unaware of what's going on around you (nm)Starliner
Nov 11, 2002 9:34 AM
Riding between traffic downtownPODIUMBOUNDdotCA
Nov 11, 2002 10:35 AM
I gotta admit I never run stop signs or red lights but I have been known on occasion to go downtown and whiz between traffic (not next to the curb but in between 2 lanes) moving at like 40+ km/h. Fun as heck but also incredibly dangerous/irritating to drivers.

re: Define irresponsible ridingKristin
Nov 11, 2002 12:28 PM
Riding up wallsKristin
Nov 11, 2002 12:41 PM
and jumping over walls? hehe nmtrekkie1
Nov 11, 2002 12:49 PM
Jumping over ETKristin
Nov 11, 2002 1:21 PM
Not funny at all (nm)PODIUMBOUNDdotCA
Nov 11, 2002 2:30 PM
disagree, still funny nmcollinsc
Nov 11, 2002 3:47 PM
Drilling holes in helmetKristin
Nov 11, 2002 12:42 PM
Looks more like a bowling ball with braids! LOL -nmTig
Nov 11, 2002 4:00 PM
Always transport your child in a protective seatKristin
Nov 11, 2002 1:26 PM
Riding to classesKristin
Nov 11, 2002 1:27 PM
Almost did something like this last weekms
Nov 11, 2002 2:37 PM
I rode my bike to my local polling place last Tuesday. My precinct in the cafeteria of a large elementary school. I walked my bike down the wide, block-long hallway to the cafeteria -- I was tempted to ride, but I did not want to press my luck. I just was happy that the cops on duty did not make me leave my bike outside of the building. However, it would have been fun . . .
Deep Thoughts....FrenchPress
Nov 11, 2002 4:15 PM
I hate it when other riders don't wave. Or say anything when passing or being passed.

Speaking of being passed, it's irresponsible for a rider to jump onto another riders wheel if not asked. If said rider doesn't know you're there and doesn't point something out or turns quick, a crash can happen. That is just wrong.

As for with cars, we're lost. Even if every "cyclist" stops at lights and the like, there will be everyday people who won't (and there's more of them).
Nov 12, 2002 8:20 AM
this isnt really a 'cycling' thing, but rather a social flaw, IMO. Do you ever say 'Hi' to someone you pass on the sidewalk? I do all the time. Do I ever receive acknowledgement? Probably 80 percent of the time.

I presume that 20 percent of the public who are too important to respond to simple human interaction are the same riders who refuse to wave or exchange when passing.

As far as unexpected drafting; tailgating is tailgating, imo.