[*BCM*] Re: Bostoncriticalmass Digest, Vol 12, Issue 7
jon_niehof at yahoo.com
Fri Jun 24 00:22:21 EDT 2005
--- J Magnusson wrote:
> I also think it is HIGH time MassBikes or
> some bike coalition, or just a bunch of us cyclists,
> had a real heart-to-heart w/ City Council about the
> lack of cyclist safety measures in Cambridge and the
> unbalanced, unfair targeting of cyclists instead of
> cars or pedestrians.
Hi Julia. Please, please, feel free (and of course this goes for
all of you) to join in with MassBike if you haven't already. We
have a meeting of the Metro Boston chapter next Wednesday;
details are at http://massbike.org/mbmb/ (you can RSVP to me and
I'll pass it on so you can be on the security list--yeah,
security sucks but it's a good location and CTPS has been nice
to let us use the space). The chapter's here to help address
issues on a more local level, and at the very least it'll help
you get in touch with some other concerned cyclists
Everything following is my opinion only :)
Remember, number one thing, your safety is paramount. If you
have to get out of the bike lane, if you have to use up the
whole travel lane to avoid the chance of getting doored by some
double-parked unprintable, just do it. The impatient yahoo
behind you leaning on his horn ain't worth it.
I've got real mixed feelings on this whole enforcement thing. I
do believe following the rules of the road is an important part
of the whole right/responsibility interplay and generally keeps
people safer. I think fair, balanced enforcement contributes
significantly, both by keeping us all educated and for that
extra little bit of punitive pain. And some of the enforcement
Cambridge has done in the past strikes me as effectively
creative (like waiving the improper equipment fines for riding
without a light if you come in with a receipt for a light).
But it has to be fair and balanced. If Cambridge follows this up
with a progam of double-parking crackdowns, and other nonsense
that goes on along Mass Ave, I call that fair and generally
helpful to the environment of the whole road. But if not, it
does start to seem discriminatory. Here's the Cambridge bike
I think it's worth suggesting other enforcement campaigns, and
general concerns about the safety of cycling in Cambridge. As a
starter I'd suggest making sure the traffic signal loop
detectors respond to bicycles if they're going to be ticketing
cyclists running red lights.
So, um, confessions: I roll stop signs a bit. I'll sometimes run
a red light after I've stopped if I'm *absolutely* certain
there's no traffic around. And honestly, I'd be ticked if I were
written up for a safe, cautious, but illegal maneuvre that
happened on a clear street. At the same time, I'm ticked when I
have to suddenly swerve or stop because another cyclist ran a
red light without slowing or stopping.
Until tomorrow night, then!
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