Please Stop Killing Cyclists

04
Nov
2013

bike-500x274

Update…upon posting this today, one of our readers wrote in and told me about one more to add to the list.  There were at least 3 cyclists killed in the United States in the past few days.

I’m just one guy.  One person who isn’t passionate about too many things, but when I hear about a cyclist being killed….I must speak my mind.

I honestly do not follow the news, politics, sports, or anything else that makes up the typical water cooler conversation on a daily basis.  But being tapped into social media, and even more so with the cycling world…I can’t avoid hearing about all that goes on.  In just the past few days I’ve learned about cyclists in two different cities that were killed on their bikes……again.  The scary thing is that I’m sure there were more that I just didn’t hear about.

How can this be?  It burns me up beyond belief, and I can’t help but to write about it.   But once again, I’m one guy….what good is my blowing up going to do?  I sit here on the verge of tears, and cannot honestly think of a realistic way to help solve this problem.  I pray that people would get cyclists on the brain when they are driving, and that people would just drop the damn cell phone.  I wish people could learn to slow down.  I fear that the policies and infrastructure being put in place just isn’t enough.

Then we lose another one of our own.  This is dedicated to the 28 year old girl who was killed in Austin, and to the 40 year old Santa Cruz resident who lost their lives last week (update: also dedicated to 52-year-old male cyclist who died in Flint).  These people weren’t cyclists….they were a daughter, a husband, a best friend, a lover.  Come on people, how many more do we want to lose?

Note: The driver who killed the girl in Austin was not necessarily at fault.  But I do know how fast people drive on the road where this happened, and can’t help to think that slower traffic could have saved her.

Photo via Cyclelicious

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16 Responses to “ Please Stop Killing Cyclists ”

  1. Matthew Mills on November 7, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    I don’t want to sound either blasé, or fatalistic, because these were important people and it bugs me too, but we live in a fallen and broken world, and shitty things happen. There are a lot of bright dedicated folks working to make cycling even safer, and they deserve our support, but if your web page was called “lovingtheBigMac”, or “LovingtheTV” you’d have a lot more deaths to mourn w/ obesity killing over 100,000 folks in the US annually. (Ditto for “lovingtheSUV” btw.)
    Bottom line for me: be visible, be predictable, stay off the sidewalks, ride with your (helmeted) head on a swivel, and keep loving the bike.
    Pax+,
    -Matt Mills
    4 season cycle commuter
    Anchorage, AK

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on November 7, 2013 at 9:17 pm

      Very well said, Matthew. Thanks for your checking out this post and leaving your comments behind.

  2. Eric Hutchins on November 6, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    And if any of you interested in joining us in trying to make a difference one person at a time check out I Wont be that Sunday Driver, on FB. https://www.facebook.com/#!/IWontBeThatSundayDriver

  3. Eric Hutchins on November 6, 2013 at 7:19 pm

    As you know this subject is near and dear to us. Cant stop thinking about it now that I have seen your post. And as I have said on awhole lot of other posts. I am not sure it can ever be made until there are truly seperate roadways with physical barriers between. I know that sounds pie in the sky but it can be done and has been done (albeit limited) in some places.
    I think the answer is ( and yeah yeah yeah how to make it happen) is corporate sponsorship at a very very high level to build bikeways. Instead of a couple of superbowl commercials a car company could pave a lot of bike path miles…………..

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on November 6, 2013 at 8:23 pm

      I feel exactly the same way, Eric. We all know big corporations have way too much money….it sure would be great to see them put money into this.

  4. Bob Sharpley on November 4, 2013 at 11:34 pm

    60 MPH ouch! Most areas in TX there is a vulnerable user ordinance that requires three feet by cars and pick-ups and 6 feet by bigger trucks.

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on November 5, 2013 at 6:32 am

      Thanks Bob. The 3 feet/6 feet law is in place in a lot of areas, but I feel it’s a tough one to enforce and measure. I do agree with it but also feel that speeds should be reduced when passing a cyclist as well.

  5. Shawn McAfee on November 4, 2013 at 8:59 pm

    It’s a tragedy for sure. Unfortunately, technology has come along so fast in the past 100 years that people don’t know what to do. Roads were intended for pedestrians first, then bicyles and wagons, then finally the automobile when it came along. And that happened just in the past 100 years, since then we’ve gotten radio, GPS, cell phones, in-car TV and all sorts of new stuff.

    It’s terrible when it happens, but our rate of consumption has to slow down first so that our common sense can catch up and become undistracted from all the shiny objects around us.

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on November 5, 2013 at 6:30 am

      You’re totally right, Shawn. People are so caught up in all other things that they have gone away from paying attention to driving. I’m not sure how to improve things, but I sure do hope it starts happening.

      • Shawn McAfee on November 5, 2013 at 10:32 am

        I guess we could put our hope in Google’s self driving cars… yikes. Sad to think that they may actually be better than a real driver.

  6. Glenn Sefton on November 4, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    I find that when I ride just to the left (about 8″ or less) of the white line, drivers usually don’t bother with me. When I ride a little bit further to the left (8″ to 16″) in effort to increase my visibility for safety reasons, I find a great deal of trouble. It would seem I’m much more likely to get honked at, yelled at, or otherwise harassed when I ride a little “too far” into the lane- despite the fact that I’m within my legal rights.

  7. Dan on November 4, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    As I was reading your blog, this link popped into my inbox:

    http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2013/11/52-year-old_man_riding_bicycle.html

  8. Daniel Christianson on November 4, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    I feel you-
    Have no big ‘fix it’ answer, still plugging away doing what we can to make it better.

    • Darryl is Loving the Bike on November 4, 2013 at 3:36 pm

      I’m with you, Daniel. Can’t fix it myself, but also doing what I can to make things better.

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