Daily Archives: May 27, 2011

A quiet day hopefully leading into a quiet weekend, and the Feed

Today is planned to be somewhat peaceful, but we all know what happens to plans. I’m going to do some church business tonight, followed by dancing at the drum circle (very good for core strength and endurance) Then I’m going to spend as much of the Memorial Day weekend off the roads as I can manage, which is going to include not going to services this Sunday. I’m not staying home because of the increased danger posed by drivers with varying degrees of inebriation prowling the streets and byways, Sunday has the Indianapolis 500 in the morning followed by the Coca-Cola World 600 in the evening. These are events I have been watching on TV ever since I was a little child, literally. One of my earliest memories was watching roadsters (front engine racers) running at Indy, I think it was the year Jim Rathman won or finished second, I just remember the announcer saying Rathman’s name over and over during the show, and I definitely remember when Jim Clark won in the Lotus, the one with the suspension biased to make the car turn left. And as for NASCAR, well my affiliation with NASCAR has been well documented in this blog. I’ll be staying off the roads, partially because of the drunks, but not primarily.

There are a lot of Infrastructure! stories in the Feed today, mostly from the UK, and there are some whacko things from the US, plus a lot of dead and injured cyclists.

Up first is one of the reasons why the roads are so dangerous today, not just for cyclists but for any road user. Norfolk man to serve 5 years for 8th DUI conviction Seven DUI convictions, and he was still allowed to have a car, even though he could not legally drive it. Seriously, there needs to be some way of regulating who can buy WMD transportational devices to keep guys like this from ever getting behind the wheel. Something like a license, or registration, that was required before being able to purchase one, with mandatory forfeiture when that license was no longer in effect… something like… a driver’s license? I don’t know how this man was able to drive drunk for so long without killing another road user, because you know that statistically for every time a drunk driver is caught there were 4 to 5 times he wasn’t caught.

A cyclist is injured in OH. Avon Lake Police Blotters: Wayward Toilet Found, Bicyclist Struck by Car Aside from an approximate location and a summation of the rider’s condition when ambulance crews arrived, I couldn’t find anything useful about this wreck, but based on the mid-block location of the wreck and the Google Satellite View, I’d say this was a hit-from-behind wreck, so use hit-from-behind protocols to avoid a similar situation.

The huge disconnect between actions and consequnces hits home again in MD. Driver Fined in Collision With Hopkins Cyclist For those that have forgotten this wreck, it was a right-hook of a cyclist in the bike lane, and the driver left her vehicle sitting on top of the cyclist with the motor running, causing 3rd degree burns from the exhaust and brain damage from the weight of the vehicle keeping the cyclist from breathing. The driver didn’t even complete her pass of the cyclist before starting the turn and drove right over him in the bike lane. At last report it wasn’t known if the cyclist would ever regain consciousness. The driver was fined less than $250 for her actions.

Another report on the hit-and-run assault in AZ. Arrest in hit and run of Tucson cyclist Apparently this person was “too busy” to actually get a license and hang up to drive. It looks now like the cyclist she hit will survive, but be pretty much a basket case the rest of his life. With a great deal of rehabilitation he might be able to feed and clothe himself, but as for finding work to pay for that food and clothing, not much hope of that.

A cyclist is killed by a turning semi in Canuckistan. Cyclist killed in crash At this point direction of travel for both vehicles is not known, but intersection protocols apply in either case.

Another intersection wreck in Canada. Cyclist injured in accident Typical left cross collision, “The driver of the vehicle was issued a ticket for failing to yield.” That’s not typical, LEO are starting to get the message that “yield to oncoming traffic when turning left” applies to all traffic, including bicycles. Anyway, intersection protocols, with emphasis on turning right to reduce angle of impact.

Crazy Infrastructure! from NYC, home of the rabid anti-bicycle crazies in government. Councilman: Get License Plates On Delivery Bikes Delivery cyclists are already required to have some kind of identifying uniform with the name and phone number of the company they work for, so I don’t see any benefit from this aside from making delivery cycling more expensive.

Moving to the UK this wreck was as much an infrastructure issue as a driver issue. A week before speed reduction comes into force, second cyclist killed on Surrey road This was a known problem area before the wreck, and was already slated for revamp to begin after the wreck, not much consolation for the relatives of the deceased.

Heavy Goods Vehicles kill cyclists and pedestrians because drivers don’t know they’re there to be avoided, so a technological solution must be imposed. Proposed Bill set to reduce road fatalities Is enough is being done to protect cyclists on Northamptonshire’s roads? The Chron investigates Because of the blind spots that could hide an entire peloton of bicycles, and because many of the deceased arrived at the intersections they were killed at before the semi that killed them, UK and EU legislators are asking that the vehicles be retrofitted with a variety of mirrors and sensors that will let the driver know that there is(are) a squishy(s) in his blind spot(s). Basically what they want is to improve the SA of the person in control of the multi-ton killing machine since so many of the wrecks involved running over stationary cyclists and pedestrians who could not get out of the way of the truck.

Infrastructure in Oz. What is it going to take to stop someone getting killed? A street that people ignore the speed limit putting cyclists and pedestrians at risk, how could you possibly fix that…? The cheap way proposed is to install speed cameras to take pictures of speeding vehicles and fine the owners big $$. It’s quick, cheap, and eventually pays for itself with fines. The expensive way is to install things like road humps and chicanes that physically slow down motor vehicle traffic while allowing bicycles and pedestrians unimpeded flow.

Finally, an article that reminds drivers in the Great White North that not every legal road user has a motor and 4 wheels. Remember to share the road “Share the road” does not mean “Bicycles get the hell off the road”, it means drivers have to wait until it is safe to pass before passing a cyclist or pedestrian, and not just safe for them to drive but safe for the cyclist or pedestrian.

And that’s all I have today.

Billed @$0.02, Opus


I’m eating my 5th meal of the day, and my wife wants to get me a t-shirt

This is the down side of being a cyclist: eating. Food is our fuel, and tasty fuel it is, too. But I can only eat so much at a single meal, so I have to spread them out a bit. Usually my wife only sees me eat 2 or 3 times a day, and she sees me eat what seems to her to be a lot of food. For a “normal human” what I eat would be excessive, but as I am losing weight (and body fat) at a slow rate, the amount of food I eat is not excessive. One of the demi-gods of cycling, either Sheldon Brown or Ken Keiffer, stated that a definition of a cyclist could be “eating machine on wheels”. My wife wants to put that on a T-shirt and make me wear it.

So, should I open a Cafe Press store, and sell that on a shirt?

PSA, Opus