Cyclists Inventing Devices To Overcome Inadequate Road Planning

Every so often articles are published about clever devices designed to make a cyclist’s life easier. Such an article appeared on City Lab is The Atlantic’s website dedicated to all things related to creating cities of the future.

The device discussed in the article mentioned above is a bicycle gadget which makes red lights turn green.    Continue reading ….

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Quantifying The Amount Of Public Support For Investing In Bicycle Infrastructure

Unless people have been living under a rock, they are aware of the growing demand for bicycle infrastructure. How they perceive this demand, and whether they are in favor of it or against it, depends on many factors, some of which are still unclear.

For that reason, many people who are in favor of creating more bicycle and pedestrian friendly cities have been trying to obtain data on where citizens stand on the issue. To that end, Sustainable Business Oregon, “a publication of the Portland Business Journal, [which] is dedicated to covering the news and issues of interest to Oregon’s sustainable economy and giving voice to a growing community of experts in sustainability and business across the state.,” according to their website, took a survey on the topic.    Continue reading ….

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It Might Be Better To Insure Your Bicycle Than To Insure Your Life

The market for cyclists’ lives isn’t very good right now. Apparently, you can buy a cyclist’s life for a mere $1,500.

That’s right. For less than $2,000 you can kill a cyclist and face no additional penalties.

In case you think this is a joke, I would like to refer you to an article on this topic. To sum up what happened:

“Bicyclist Shawn Gosch of Onawa was hit and killed June 20, 2014, by a motorist on Iowa Highway 7 west of Manson. Under Iowa law, the driver of the vehicle was charged with a misdemeanor for unsafe passing and fined little more than $1,550.”

Continue reading ….

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Has Increased Bicycle Use Changed The Way Drivers See Bicyclists?

At the beginning of the current bicycle era, whose exact date is unknown, but could be approximated as sometime in the early ‘90s, bicyclists were uniformly seen as a negative factor on the roads. They were assured by bicycle advocates that this would change once more bicycles were on the roads.

Apparently, the experts thought that familiarity with something causes one to expect it. To some degree, this is true.

If something comes at you out of the blue, you react with surprise. Yet something you see everyday becomes part of the scenery, the norm.

Drivers are now more aware of the presence of bicycles on the roads. Whether they like having to share the road with bikes or not, they expect to see them.

Continue reading ….

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Activity Is Now Something That Must Be Monitored

Cyclists are active people. They can’t ride a bike and be sedentary; it’s one or the other.

Many cyclists engage in other forms of activity such as walking or playing a sport. Cycling makes them fit. And fit individuals enjoy being active.

The only time a cyclist might not be active outside of riding a bike is if his or her bike riding is out of necessity. Not having a car or another means of transportation, for instance, is an example of when a biker rider might only be active in order to travel from one location to another.    Continue reading ….

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Motor Vehicle Emissions And Intelligence

Motor vehicle emissions are responsible for causing a range of health problems. Such problems are seen more often in urban areas where occupants are exposed to high levels of pollution created by motor vehicle exhaust.

A lot of research has been done about the effects of traffic pollution on cardiovascular health and respiratory illnesses, such as asthma. However, less is known about the effect the particles created by motor vehicle exhaust have on the developing brain.    Continue reading ….

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Pickup Trucks, Education, And Demands For Cyclists To Get Off Of The Roads

Blog post titles can become a bit unwieldy at times. This one is no exception. It was borne of experience, dismay and frustration, so although its intent is fairly clear, it’s also necessary to explain.

It was early evening and the sun had gone down earlier than expected. Part of the surprise was due to the gradual shortening of the days, which had been hidden by early autumn warmth.

I thought I would arrive home before dark, or just as it was getting dark, but forty-five minutes from home, the light under a row of trees was too dim to ride without a headlight. I couldn’t see the road.    Continue reading ….

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Out-Of-Line Drivers

Since it has been raining for the past two days, I have spent more time than usual in my car. Urban driving, which is what I was subjected to, is always a slow process, with plenty of time for observation and rumination.

Judging time in a driving environment is next to impossible. No matter how much time a driver allows to get to a destination, it’s never enough. Traffic, construction, accidents and unforeseen events all alter a driver’s plans.

So, while I was winding my way through traffic, just ten minutes outside of the City of Boston, which was my destination, I got stuck behind a long line of cars waiting at a traffic light. Most of the cars were neatly lined up, one behind the other, just a few feet behind the bumper of the car in front of them.    Continue reading …. 

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City Streets Are Not Bicycle Race Tracks

There are times when city officials consent to closing city streets to traffic for the purpose of allowing a sanctioned bicycle race to take place. The purpose of closing the streets to traffic is to protect the safety of pedestrians, motorists and cyclists.

Most people can understand the need for this action. You really can’t have bicycles flying down city streets, going 25 miles per hour or more, with pedestrians and slower cyclists on the same roads. A crash would be inevitable. For this reason, most people comply with restrictions on who can use the roads when bicycles are being raced.    Continue reading ….

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Visibility When The Sun Is Low In The Sky In Autumn

Visibility is often a problem when driving a car. Many things can reduce visibility. Some of them are man-made and others are caused by nature.

Driving in autumn is an example of the latter. Late in the day, the sun is so low in the sky that it can be blinding. While it is most dangerous for drivers, it can be a problem for cyclists, as well.

Cyclists can be blinded to the extent that they cannot see oncoming traffic. Knowing what to do under such circumstances is not always easy.

Continue reading ….

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