Saturday, September 20, 2014

Can motorists, cyclists share the road?

The News Journal -- Every road-riding cyclist has a story about a time a motorist came within inches of killing them.

A car recently ran John McCormick off the road when turning into the Brandywine Town Center from Naamans Road in Brandywine Hundred, he said.

McCormick recovered and followed the driver to where he'd parked.

"'Hey, why'd you cut me off?' " McCormick asked him.

"He said, 'I never saw you.' And I believed him."

The hit-and-run death of 27-year-old cyclist Phillip Bishop on Brackenville Road on Sept. 12 is another stark reminder of the vulnerability of cyclists on roadways built for and dominated by automobiles. Bishop follows the death of Eloy Sandoval, 44, who was killed crossing Del. 273 near Ruthar Drive on his bike July 25, and the 99 cyclists injured in crashes so far this year. [Full story ...]

Poster's note: Though both fatals this year were unrelated to infrastructure, it is still a big part of the problem. Most bike lanes are inconsistent, poorly designed, or end abruptly at a curb or solid white line. There is still no national standard that permits sharing dedicated right turn lanes with bike lanes, and none appear to be in the works. This can doom properly designed bike lanes to failure, as DelDOT has shown time and time again.

A grassroots effort, started in 2010, did ask DelDOT for a slight design modification in the right turn-only lane that would indicate it was shared with bicyclists proceeding straight through the intersection. 4 years and tons of bureaucracy later, there is still no certainty that it will pass muster and be adopted into DelDOT's design guide.

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