For the love of God, when you're riding your bike, stop for pedestrians when they have the right of way. You know when some d***wad in a car almost runs you down when you have the right of way? When you do do something like blow a stop sign or crosswalk when a human is trying to cross, you are That Guy.

I used to be pretty good about stopping for people, but eventually realized 'pretty good' wasn't good enough, so I made an effort to be more attentive. In particular I was inspired by a guy I saw a few years ago on Clark St. in Andersonville who not only stopped to let a couple cross the street, but blocked the lane to do so. So I started doing that whenever I could. I've been That Guy occasionally - in particular, there was a time this summer when I was crossing the river on Belmont in my car and began to go around a car that stopped for what seemed to be no apaprent reason - he had actually stopped to let a family cross the street. Geez, was I an asshole then. Fortunately, I wasn't going very fast and the car in front of my honked his horn, and I realized what was happening and stopped. I was That Asshole then.

This morning I was riding down Milwaukee in Logan Square on my way to work and saw a woman trying to cross near the theater. So I signaled a stop, moved into the left-center of the SB lane, and stopped. The next car behind me promptly blew the crosswalk on my right. The next car going NB did the same, as I moved to the center line and put my arm out and shouted at him for added effect (really, this frustrates me a lot sometimes). The next car behind me started to pass on the right and stopped at the last minute, perhaps seeing this. Sometimes I have gotten off my bike and stood with my bike sideways in the middle of the road to help people cross the street.

It shouldn't be this hard to cross the f!@#$ing street, here or anywhere. I am aware (see above) of how easy it can be to slip into a me-first habit of behavior, especially when in a car. But I'm usually a cyclist on the streets here, and we're all cyclists here, and every day I see cyclists fail to yield to people. Not people sitting in cars, but vulnerable people unprotected by anything who are just trying to walk somewhere without getting killed by other people who act as if they are trying to kill them.

So please, don't be a body part, and just let people cross the street.

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Yes, and sometimes this takes paying attention. E.g. on, say, Milwaukee in heavy traffic, if you see a car stopped up ahead with a large gap in front of it, there's a good chance they've stopped to let someone cross, and you should slow down as you approach. Paying this much attention means, yes, that you can't rocket up the right side of stopped traffic. But that's not very safe for the rider anyway.

Sadly, the people on foot are so accustomed to the many rude cyclists and drivers that they almost always wait for me to pass. Standard practice for me is to always yield for pedestrians, this confuses them but eventually they catch on and I wonder if it was even worth the effort. 

Glad to see when a few smile and appreciate my gesture.

Thanks, I'll add that to my box of tricks.


Just last night I was riding NB on Damen and just S of Belmont I stopped for a combo of car in front of me signaling their right turn and a pedestrian w/kid coming from the W side of the intersection. Both myself and vehicle in front of me stopped, cyclist sped by me on my right between car and curb and skidded to stop when he saw the pedestrian and kid. 

I said, "Hey don't mind us!" and stared at him a good 15 seconds as I passed him and he looked at me like I was an alien. 

Cyclists, motorists, longboarders (ew): STOP FOR CROSSWALKS. So annoying.

I stop for anybody who has the right away.  More often than not, they look at me like I'm crazy for stopping, having been conditioned to assume that cyclists always will blow straight through. 

As I approached a 4 way I stopped with a car the pedestrian was shocked like "you're stopping for me?" Yeah I'm that guy who stops unless the intersection looks like this.

On a more positive note I find that drivers are pretty good at stopping for pedestrians crossing Clybourn at Kenmore. It's not as good as it could be, especially in the evenings, but it's one of the crossings where I do see drivers and cyclists regularly yield to those crossing. 

Thank you for your post and for your efforts. I really wish more bicyclists would yield to anyone who has the right of way, including pedestrians, other bicyclists, and cars.

Regarding pedestrians specifically, bike commuters on Kinzie are absolutely the worst or blowing through crosswalks and failing to yield to pedestrians. 

Yes, I think that the intersection just east of the bridge is particularly bad for this.

In Portland, OR, drivers get ticketed for blowing the painted white pedestrian walkways (where often there is no stop sign or light). It does take a bit of getting used to. It's definitely easier for me to stop when I am on my bike than when I'm driving my car. A lady with a stroller was so thankful the other day when I stopped.

Also, when I would walk my dog at night, OMG, what a nightmare. I would wait on corners until no one, I mean no one, was driving or riding through. So many people blowing stop signs (day or night). I'd love to be a cop for a day...

I like the idea of 'cop for a day' I would say the city make a policy that if you have photo or video evidence to back it up and are willing to swear an affidavit that what's on the camera is accurate and it shows someone committing  a low level traffic offense like  blowing through the pedestrian walk when someone was in it, or pass on the right in the bike lane or whatever...  that you can go down to your local police station and have them issue a ticket by mail... can't be any worse that the automatic speeding / stop light cameras? it mostly won't catch cyclists violating the crosswalks which was the point of this thread since there's no license plat to mail the ticket to, but it sure couldn't help raise awareness generally that 'hey! stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk'.


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