The Chainlink

Most of us who use this PBL have probably experienced a pedestrian stepping in front of us against the light.  Now, there are a lot of words that might come out of your mouth in that situation.  The ones that I prefer to use now are, "Please look up! Please don't get hurt!"

After I said this a few nights ago, the woman who stepped in front of me actually smiled and confessed that she had perhaps had one too many drinks.  We then had a friendly conversation.

On some occasions, I've also said nothing, and just ridden up to the person standing in the PBL and stared at them silently.  Sometimes they've done nothing; other times they've realized that my light is green, theirs is red, and then jumped back on the sidewalk, sometimes smiling or apologizing.

Your strategies?  Your results?

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I typically prefer the "stop and chat" technique in these situations.

Madeline said:

was in downtown on Dearborn right before Jackson and this Elderly woman was standing dead on in the bike lane as I was crossing? Do I swerve and go to into the left lane at the risk of oncoming traffic? Do I Slam on Breaks? Yell a head of time? Tickets for standing in the bike lane? Suggestions! 

Since I'm not convinced that most of them even recognize that they're standing in a bike lane, I usually yell, "This is a bike lane!" If they move, I say, "Thank you." If they don't move, I sometimes say...something else.

This past week, I encountered a bicycle blocking the lane, so I slowed down and demonstratively said, "Et tu, biker?" I don't think he got the reference.

I am that rude air horn guy. No apologies. Otherwise it is just allstop right before hitting them and saying "Wow, that was close" with a smile.

I'll vote for option #2.

Juan 2-8 mi. said:

I am that rude air horn guy. No apologies. Otherwise it is just allstop right before hitting them and saying "Wow, that was close" with a smile.

I find that sometimes people move, sometimes they are too oblivious and sometimes I stop, sometimes I go past.  I try to be safe for everyone, though it can be hard.

Had one of these I wasn't using so I have that attached to my bag if I have time to pull it out:

http://www.amazon.com/NRS-AW1-Storm-Safety-Whistle/dp/B001H8FJIW

I love the people that run to cross the street well after their walk indication has expired and then they walk once the get in front of the bike lane, thus confounding my efforts to proceed on a lawful green signal.  Admittedly this doesn't consume much of my time, but it is irritating nonetheless. 

The other day I had a suit totally miss his walk, but he jogged across the street, still not making it to the other curb by the time I got the green.  I appreciated that he jogged rather than starting to walk once he hit the bike lane in front of me.  He jogged all the way to the curb.  I said, "Thanks for the hustle homie!"

Option #2 always ends up with the other person being startled at first, then a smile of relief commences as they walk away.
 

I dislike using the air horn, but it sure helps to forewarn those mindless pedestrians 15 feet before any allstops are necessary.

 
h' 1.0 said:

I'll vote for option #2.

Juan 2-8 mi. said:

I am that rude air horn guy. No apologies. Otherwise it is just allstop right before hitting them and saying "Wow, that was close" with a smile.

My office is right next to the DBL on Monroe. I see people doing all kinds of crazy stuff. I've seen skateboarders and joggers use it like it is a riverfront boardwalk. The valets at Trattoria No. 10 and I have had several "discussions" about where they park the cars. It's ridiculous.

I bike past Tratoria No. 10 on my commute and that usually is the worst spot, either because of the Valet right there or for some reason people love to go down that alley.

 I honestly don't know what is going through people's heads sometimes as a guy in a benz pulled fully into the bike lane (blocking the whole thing) as I was coming right at him for the Valet. 

Mike Keating said:

My office is right next to the DBL on Monroe. I see people doing all kinds of crazy stuff. I've seen skateboarders and joggers use it like it is a riverfront boardwalk. The valets at Trattoria No. 10 and I have had several "discussions" about where they park the cars. It's ridiculous.

And a heads-up to everyone: Last weekend, I saw those dreaded spray-painted indications of future utility work (Com Ed?  Gas?  Sewers?  no clue, all were marked) on the DBL in the Loop.  Soon, it will be torn up, and then will it be properly re-paved and marked?  And when it's all torn up, cyclists will be back in traffic: no sweat for the one-way northbound Dearborn traffic, but what about the southbound cyclists?  Trouble ahead.

A friend and I were discussing this recently, well people and cars in the bike lanes, in general. It came down to the question of what happens if people just run into them? I was told a while ago that pedestrians have the right of way, no matter what. I never looked into that. If it's true, I think it's ridiculous.

Last year I was in an accident involving a PBL and pedestrians. I had the choice to hit the parked cars, curb, or people. I aimed for the people(they're squishy). I the people got out of the way and it was just me that tumbled around. 

I don't think I would ever try to hit a car, although, I do wonder who would be at fault for injuries, damages, etc. 

Imagine if a pedestrian was just standing in the middle of a "normal" street. A driver would not have the right to plow his car into the pedestrian simply because the driver had the "right of way."

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