I rode by around 8:15. Things went from bad to awful to the worst when I saw the police cars, then bike still in the street, then the tarp. Seems similar to the cyclist killed on Western not long ago, both traveling in the same direction with a large truck turning right.
So sad right now. So, very sad.
How can I ask my kids to ride their bikes in this city when lives are so quickly taken in neighborhoods like Roscoe Village.
So very sad.
Terrifying. I'm always vigilant about watching for the signs that a vehicle is going to turn right in front of me, but of course even slow-moving vehicles are actually moving pretty quickly. Going to give trucks an even wider berth from now on.
A few tools you can use to stay safer around trucks:
There's a general rule of thumb for safety in traffic around trucks, whether you are on a bike or in a motor vehicle. Look at the truck's side mirror - on the side you can see. If you can't see the driver's face, the driver CANNOT see you. Much of the area around a large truck is a blind spot. See diagram below. If you are in a blind spot (labeled as "no zone" on the diagram - link below), get out of it as quickly as possible. In many situations, the safest way to do this may be to stop and wait for the truck get far enough ahead of you so that you have plenty of warning of where the truck will go.
Passing on the right can be extremely risky, as you may not have adequate warning if the truck is going to turn right. If the truck does not have enough room to swing wide and enter the lane after the turn, the driver may overrun the corner, knocking you down if you are right beside the truck.
If a truck is overtaking you, wave to get the driver's attention so he sees you in the traffic lane. If he doesn't move over or slow down to stay clear of you, get clear of the truck's path of travel fast. A mirror can be a lifesaver in this situation.
Thanks for sharing these, they're good rules to bear in mind. They don't, however, do anything about trucks turning across bike lanes without checking for traffic. In cases like this one and Lisa's, the truck passed the cyclist before turning so the responsibility lies squarely on them.
That being said, these are good to know in cases like Vigrinia Murray's, where the truck was stopped.
No, they don't stop trucks from turning across bike lanes without checking for traffic. I think that working for better education, enforcement and licensing procedures could help more with that.
I think it's good to be as informed as we can and use this information to ride safer, but that won't prevent all potential crashes.
I'll preface this by saying I'm not trying to make any assumptions about what happened here.
I use to live right by Damen and Division, and I'd often see two types of near misses with right-turning vehicles on a regular basis: (1) where a cyclist rides up along side a vehicle that is clearly turning, and yet continues to ride straight, almost getting hit when the vehicle completes the turn; and (2) vehicles that decide last minute to turn, and do so in a way that almost smashes a cyclist.
I'd like to think the first situation is pretty avoidable as a cyclist if you pay attention and keep yourself out of harms way (not that the driver doesn't also have responsibility to look). The second scenario, though, is hard to see coming and is probably one of my biggest concerns when riding in bike lanes. I was right-hooked once, and that's exactly how it happened. Car suddenly turned to get into a parking ramp while I was going straight and clipped me.
I think the only way to completely avoid this type of accident is to undertake a major redesign of how bike lanes flow into intersections.
It's funny you mention that. I always filter through stopped traffic on the left of the rightmost lane and only stop at the front of the cars so I can guarantee my visibility. The exception is if there's a large pack of cyclists, since we can fill the entire land and I don't want to shoal. The drivers never seem to mind my filtering or getting to the front, it's only ever other cyclists who get upset.
Maybe I'm crazy but I always pull up to the right. As I pull up I look at both if the car has its turn signals on and if it is angling right. I've always been under the assumption that drives planning to make a right always have their wheels turned a bit that way.
Then, when I am next to the car waiting on green. I always look at the driver both to make eye contact and see where he/she is looking.
Perhaps I need to reconsider this given what you all have written but I feel safe on the right. Not sure if I'd feel great in the center of the lane itself with pushy drivers behind me.
I tend to give trucks and buses a very wide berth and unlike cars will not come up on their right. That being said I think it would be easy to do what this woman evidently did and ride to the right of a truck without realizing it would turn.
At the risk of sounding contentious I don't believe that 95% of intersections have no right on red. If so I'm breaking the law every time I drive."
I feel safer to the right Do not like sitting in the middle of traffic though I understand your thinking. I usually don't start riding until I see the car going straight so perhaps I believe this protects me.
In the areas where I walk, ride or drive, it's probably well under 10% of the intersections I see.
Food for thought - if you are waiting next to a stopped vehicle and it cuts sharply around the corner when it starts to move, you could be knocked down and suffer a serious injury. This has happened to lots of people.