Daily Archives: November 14, 2013

The mule gets a day off, and the Feed

Thanks to the washing machines at my son’s apartment complex tearing up clothes we have transportation from the store with the groceries, so my contribution today is bringing the money and picking out the things that I’m the only one to eat. I buy “boring” foods like salty snacks and ramen and instant miso soup (I found a brand I really like complete with organic miso), and I also pick out the yogurt because Mrs. the Poet only eats one a month, where my normal consumption is one or two a day. I need to keep my intestinal flora balanced or I get really gassy. When I get gassy I get nasty notes from the EPA about greenhouse gas emissions… On the plus side when I get gassy I get lots of personal space 😉

Continuing with the theme of “Is it OK to kill cyclists?” from the beginning of the week, we get this from WA. Cyclists shocked driver will not face charges in death of bike rider If it can be proved that this was a medical emergency, then yes criminal charges are not appropriate, but a lifetime ban on driving or operating heavy equipment should be mandatory. If the driver can have a seizure at the wheel with no warning than that person is not fit to be a driver.

A heartbreaking report on a cyclist killed in a hit-and-run in PA. Cyclist killed on Highway 247 Hit-from-behind so protocols to avoid and infrastructure to prevent. After seeing what happened to my dad after Mom died I can see parallels in this story.

Still in PA a cyclist is caught under a freight train at an unguarded crossing. Bicyclist hit, killed by freight train in Reading and Reading teen dies in bike accident on train tracks As the report reads now the cyclist was crossing near a stationary train at an unguarded crossing when the train started moving and the bicycle was caught in the rollingstock. Obviously nobody was looking at the front of the train when this happened. What isn’t known at this point is how long the train had been stopped, if it reversed direction after stopping or continued in the same direction, which end of the train (engine end or what used to be the caboose end) and if the cyclist was actually crossing the tracks or just by them. My usual rant about trains hitting bicycles is non-operative here.

A cop gets hit in NJ. Off-duty Elizabeth officer struck by truck while riding bicycle Left cross, the cyclist was lucky to not get killed. Intersection protocols to avoid, but as the truck driver was ignoring a prohibition on his truck being on the street he was turning onto, I doubt changing the physical infrastructure would make a lot of difference. I hope the truck driver at least gets a ticket for failure to yield as well as a ticket for trying to drive on the street prohibited to trucks of his size.

The CO driver that pulled to the wrong side of the road causing a massive bicycle pileup when he pulled back out gets a ticket. Driver ticketed in Lefthand Canyon crash that injured cyclist Dale Stetina The ticket is marginally appropriate for the severity of the effects.

Another train-vs-bike wreck with a slightly happier ending. Bicyclist Injured in Collision with Train in Santa Barbara Noisy environment combined with cyclist not looking in the direction the train was coming from results in injured but alive cyclist and wrecked beyond repair bicycle. Standard rant about avoiding trains in 3, 2, 1… Avoiding getting hit by a train is about the easiest type of wreck I cover in this blog, trains are BIG and LOUD and easy to see and hear, but mostly they ARE ONLY FOUND ON TRAIN TRACKS. So to avoid getting hit by a train you just have to look both ways and listen when you cross train tracks.

A wreck near NOLA. Bicyclist hit and killed Tuesday in Marrero is identified by Jefferson Parish coroner Looking at the Street View of the wreck scene it looks like the cyclist was trying to get over to the left turn lane when he was hit. Since the cyclist’s lighting status was not mentioned it can be safely assumed the cyclist was legally and visibly lighted and reflectored in this wreck. So hit-from-behind with no place to safely dodge while trying to make a legal turn means protocols are mooted by circumstances, and get the infrastructure right so that cyclists can access the numerous retail establishments on this stretch of road without risking life and limb.

Another report on a wreck in Canuckistan. Crash near Casino Regina sends cyclist to hospital No mention of the cyclist’s turning movement in this report. Still, intersection wreck requires intersection protocols to avoid and infrastructure to prevent.

Speaking of infrastructure, a coroner’s report from the Great White North strongly requests changes to the infrastructure after several cyclists are killed in wrecks. Make streets safer for cyclists, coroners urge and Quebec coroner’s office says driver education will help cyclist safety Notice that on the list of suggested actions helmets are “encouraged” instead of “required”, mainly because of the cited wrecks none of the cyclists died from head injury, instead they died of massive blunt-force trauma to the torso or legs.

And a clarification on that report from yesterday about a doubling of deaths in Oz. NSW cyclist deaths double in 2013 Yep serious infrastructure issues there Guv’nor. And since studies done in Oz show that more than 8 out of ten physical interactions between motor vehicles and cyclists are due to violations by the motor vehicle operator I don’t think the cyclists are very happy about it taking so long or are causing so many deaths to fix.

And those are all the bicycle links that gave me fits, or not, today.

Billed @€0.02,Opus