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Ask The Advice Pedaler: Etiquette for the Conscientious Cyclist
Dear Advice Pedaler:
I'm excited to use the bike lanes that have sprung up in town over the last few years, but I can't shake the sense that I'm not quite as safe in them as
I thought. The white line just doesn't seem like much protection!
Sadly, even when we cyclists eke out a bit of space for ourselves in this city, we may not rest assured that all is well. Many are surprised to find that even in the bike lane, we must ride as cautiously as ever. When the Advice Pedaler takes a bike lane, she is always careful to observe the following:
- Are there cars double-parked in the lane ahead? If so, it's time to signal and confidently move out into the car lane. Upon finding a phone, call the DPT at 553-1200 to report cars blocking the lane and resume your journey.
- Are there people in parked cars next to the lane? Doors remain your greatest enemy, even in the bike lane. Watch side mirrors or look through the back windows of parked cars to make sure you won't get doored in our own space.
- Are there pedestrians stepping out from between parked cars? Pedestrians may not hear your approach (if you have properly lubricated your chain) and assume the way is clear! Even if they are just walking to their car, they are still a pedestrian and have the right of way.