The Chainlink

Like all of you, my heart hurts every time I read news about the latest crash ending in injury or death of a cyclist. It seems so avoidable, so preventable and is happening far too often lately.

I'm going to try something different. We're going to put aside any worry about "victim blaming" and get right down to the root causes cyclists are at risk. Once we have that list, let's start attaching activities to each risk that could help alleviate or fix the risk. Here's a list to get it started:

1. DUI

2. Dooring

3. Not obeying light/sign (cyclists)

4. No lights at night

5. Right hook

6. Left hook

7. Infrastructure (lack of bike lanes)

8. Driver distracted e.g. smart phone, mobile phone

9. Not obeying light/sign (motorist)

10. Obstructed bike lane (motorist) 

11. Reckless driving, speeding (motorist)

12. Violation of the 3 foot rule i.e. space between motorist and cyclist

13. Infrastructure not providing enough space for the 3 foot rule

14. Motorists not understanding size and vulnerability of cyclists

15. Knowledge of laws (motorists, cyclists)

16. Going around railroad crossing gates at grade crossings while gates are down, lights are flashing and bells are ringing (cyclists)

17. Impatience (motorists, cyclists)

18. Quick response to "blame" or use language that "blames" the cyclist as well as the flip side - language letting the driver off the hook e.g. accident, didn't see the cyclist, etc. (media, some police, public)

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+1 Yes!  I love the North Lawndale training they did with the children receiving bikes. I wish we could have more bike giveaways and more bike training. 

Hate to say it, but too many cyclists ask for it. I see it all the time riding to/from work:
A) Biking less than 3 feet from car door
B) No helmet (especially Divvies)
C) Going through red lights without really looking and stopping first
D) Going through stop signs without slowing down
E) Racing other bikes
F) Too much weaving around stopped or moving cars
G) Not being courteous to cars at stop signs to build positive feelings for us
H) And more....

Sorry, but NOBODY "asks for it." 

Is there carelessness? Yes, but no one who considers the consequences "asks" to get hurt. One may be careless or clueless, but one is seldom suicidal. 

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