The Chainlink

Illinois to begin tracking doorings (finally - you guys probably helped make this happen)

Originally posted on Steven Can Plan.

 

Governor Quinn made a rule change today requiring Illinois police departments to record dooring-type bicycle crashes on the SR-1050 motorist crash reporting form, according to Jon Hilkevitch of the Chicago Tribune. The announcement will be made tomorrow.


Apparently, Gov. Quinn read the Chicago Tribune's article on March 21st about how the Illinois Department of Transportation could not and would not collect information on dooring crashes. I first wrote about this data deficiency on March 11.

For now, responding police officers will have to write DOORING next to the bicyclist's name on the crash reporting form (the Chicago Police method was to write DOORING on a second piece of paper and record this data internally - IDOT would not accept the second page). The Tribune article explains that IDOT already ordered a bunch of new forms and won't make a new order until 2013 at which time the form will have a checkbox making this process much simpler.

I would like to thank Governor Quinn, writer Jon Hilkevitch, the Active Transportation Alliance, and all who contacted IDOT asking for their reporting standards to be changed to record dooring crashes. This means that next year you'll see bike crash maps with a ton more dots - those of doorings, unless we continue educating ourselves, family and friends about riding AWAY from the door zone.

Santa Monica Door Lane / Bike Lane
Ride out of the door zone. Illustration by Gary Kavanagh.

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That's a difficult task riding along Milwaukee in Wicker Park or Halsted in Lincoln Park/Boystown, Clark in Andersonville and don't get me going about Rogers Park's Sheridan road with NO bike lane and 45 mph drivers.

Steven Vance said:
Stay away from the doors and there won't be. 

Mike Zumwalt said:
I hope there aren't a ton more dots.

I believe that this might be the piece that came out of the Fox News request...

 

http://www.myfoxchicago.com/dpp/news/metro/dooring-cyclists-acciden...

 

 

You know there are other roads out there, right? 

 

Change your route to avoid those areas or change your riding to adapt.  When I ride Milwaukee through Wicker Park I slow down, hug traffic and pay a lot of attention to cats.


Mike Zumwalt said:

That's a difficult task riding along Milwaukee in Wicker Park or Halsted in Lincoln Park/Boystown, Clark in Andersonville and don't get me going about Rogers Park's Sheridan road with NO bike lane and 45 mph drivers.

Steven Vance said:
Stay away from the doors and there won't be. 

Mike Zumwalt said:
I hope there aren't a ton more dots.
The dooring issue and this reporting change got a few minutes of coverage on WDCB this a.m.  :)
I have to pay attention to cats now, too? I thought cars were bad enough. Argh. Makes me just about want to give up on riding in the city altogether.  :p

notoriousDUG said:

You know there are other roads out there, right? 

 

Change your route to avoid those areas or change your riding to adapt.  When I ride Milwaukee through Wicker Park I slow down, hug traffic and pay a lot of attention to cats.

The article has an error. 

Governor Quinn made a rule (or policy) change - there was nothing signed into law. There was nothing to sign into law. 

JR Clark said:

I believe that this might be the piece that came out of the Fox News request...

 

http://www.myfoxchicago.com/dpp/news/metro/dooring-cyclists-acciden...

 

 

Yes, it is always important to keep a close eye on cats while riding in an urban environment, failure to do so can result in horrible accidents.  For this very reason I keep a basket full of adorable kittens on my bike at all times.  This makes it much easier to keep an eye on cats, if I did not do this I would have to be scanning the area for stray cats and not paying attention to the road.

Melanie said:
I have to pay attention to cats now, too? I thought cars were bad enough. Argh. Makes me just about want to give up on riding in the city altogether.  :p

notoriousDUG said:

You know there are other roads out there, right? 

 

Change your route to avoid those areas or change your riding to adapt.  When I ride Milwaukee through Wicker Park I slow down, hug traffic and pay a lot of attention to cats.

from    Rachel Cromidas <rcromidas@chicagonewscoop.org>

to    media@chicagocriticalmass.org, info@chicagocriticalmass.org
date    Tue, Apr 26, 2011 at 3:02 PM
subject    URGENT: news story on dooring accidents
   
Dear Critical Mass,
reporter Ash-har Quraishi of WTTW is urgently looking to interview someone who was recently doored by a car while biking in Chicago. This is related to the news that the state will begin tracking dooring incidents the way it tracks collision accidents. If there is any chance you could forward this request to your listhost, or at the very least ask around, I would really appreciate it. His cell no is: 773 509 5492.
All the best,
Rachel Cromidas
Desk: 312 523 0265

I'm just curious... if we stay out of the door lane, aren't we in front of cars and drivers, who might not be paying attention to what's in front of them? 

The lanes that Chicago created are on the mostly in the same area as open doors.  We would have to bike out of that bike lane, which would be enough to anger drivers and cause more problem for us biking...

 

The long term solution is to have dedicated bike lanes away from parked cars, so door opening or cars won't be a major factor when riding bicycles.

Not really.  The bike lanes in Chicago are wide enough so that if you stay towards the left of the bike lane, you're out of the door area.  That's not necessarily true of the marked shared lanes, where we're often forced into the door lane by the traffic pattern (hi, Milwaukee Ave.). 

 

I agree with your long term solution.  One way to get there faster is to greatly reduce the amount of free parking the city provides to (freeloader) car owners.    On the flip side, I know ATA is working with CDOT on special barriers to solve the all-important cat-hazard problem, but that's a much more difficult and dangerous issue.  

 


Dhruv said:

I'm just curious... if we stay out of the door lane, aren't we in front of cars and drivers, who might not be paying attention to what's in front of them? 

The lanes that Chicago created are on the mostly in the same area as open doors.  We would have to bike out of that bike lane, which would be enough to anger drivers and cause more problem for us biking...

 

The long term solution is to have dedicated bike lanes away from parked cars, so door opening or cars won't be a major factor when riding bicycles.

Riding in front of cars is better than riding to the side of cars because you are more visible to the driver. You will be riding in front of cars when you "take the lane," a maneuver advisable when there is no bike lane, wide shoulder, or the bike lane or wide shoulder has obstacles.

Dhruv said:

I'm just curious... if we stay out of the door lane, aren't we in front of cars and drivers, who might not be paying attention to what's in front of them? 

The lanes that Chicago created are on the mostly in the same area as open doors.  We would have to bike out of that bike lane, which would be enough to anger drivers and cause more problem for us biking...

 

The long term solution is to have dedicated bike lanes away from parked cars, so door opening or cars won't be a major factor when riding bicycles.

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