Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ride into work for Tuesday, 23 October

Taking it up to number 4 for this year, I was hit again this morning by a car. This time I was going over the railway bridge on Mumford Road an as I went through the intersection an SUV tried to pass me going through and clipped my handlebars. This time I was able to keep on the bike and told the driver to pull over. His excuse was "but you started going faster!" (as cyclists tend to do going downhill) and "you wobbled!" (as cyclists tend to do when they're assaulted by SUVs). I called 911 and had a full meal deal - fire, police and ambulance all attended. Muppet driver's reponse was, "oh my god, you really called the police, I can't believe you called the police!"

Needless to say I was not best pleased but since there were no witnesses (and the police officer went up and down the length of the road looking for witnesses) it was not possible to give the driver a ticket. Given that there was a message for me to call the driver's insurance when I got home, I'm guessing they found out pretty quickly. I'm looking forward to talking to them tomorrow, but something tells me the muppet driver is not going to enjoy his next insurance bill.

I think I'm going to take an old Bic-able U-lock and hang that off my handlebars and use it for signalling. Something tells me that drivers will shy away from someone waving a few pounds of metal around that might damage their precious vehicle...

Distance logged: 11.143km
Time: 32:34
Average speed: 20.5km/hr
Max speed: 61 km/hr
Temperature: 11C, cloudy
Cumulative distance: 3646.136km
Cumulative cost per km: $0.23
Monthly distance: 375.068km
Monthly cost per km: $0


Anonymous The Krow said...

keep resonating with your posts of bad drivers. I've gone to the step of having police non-emerg programmed on speed dial of my cell (plus it being a camera phone helps with plates) Just yesterday on my ride home i had 2 encounters with people trying ot cut me off... which is silly since I was riding faster then the speed limit (55km/hr) and they thought I was still slow, one yelled to get on the sidewalk.. IMAGINE!
the worst was last week 2 drivers at the same intersection less then a minute apart, the second one actually tapped me then claimed she didn't see me... hmmmmmm odd that I'm taller then a car have flashing lights, and was wearing a bright coloured jacket. Yep camoflauge.
Steve I keep reading your encounters and look at mine and am amazed that this happens. I wonder who else has these encounters while they commute by bike.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007 6:38:00 am  
Blogger steve said...

I think everyone has these encounters but the further away from downtown into suburbia one rides, the worse things seem to get. There's a line somewhere on the far side of Bedford where it seems to stop, though - I've never had a problem riding around Sackville, and people are willing to wait behind me for a safe place to pass if necessary.

The drivers that shout at me to get on the sidewalk never seem to think that maybe pedestrians wouldn't want me trundling along at 50-60km/hr, or even cruising at 20-25km/hr.

I'm still amazed that the muppet driver complained I "sped up" riding down a hill.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007 6:58:00 am  
Blogger Jerome said...

Wow Steve, I can't believe that! Again! I'm glad you weren't hurt and good on you for calling the police.

You may remember I had an incident last year where a principal of one of the catholic schools here in Strathmore passed me on the right hand side because he didn't think I should be in the middle of the lane at a stop sign. Well, I've talked with him and I can say first hand that he is a much more curtious driver. I dropped the charges because it's obviously not our bent just to get people ticketed, but rather get them to be safer drivers and give us cyclists more respect on the road. If he hadn't appologized and changed his view point of cyclists (he has passed me about 10 times since then, every time pulling way over, slowing down and giving me heaps of room) I certianly would have gone to court if it came to that.

Hopefully dinglenuts' insurance company can get his attention.

Glad you weren't hurt!

Speeding up down a hill.........how dare you! ha, ha.


Wednesday, October 24, 2007 10:12:00 am  
Blogger Jamie said...

Steve - I am continually amazed and disheartened at the problems you have with bad drivers up there. Is there a lot of NASCAR viewership in your area? Are people trying to emulate Richard Petty?

Wednesday, October 24, 2007 11:55:00 am  
Blogger steve said...

Jerome, I'm glad you can get people to listen to you - if only we could do the same here! There's currently a rash of cycling related articles in the newspapers, but drivers don't seem to be changing their attitudes.

Jamie, Halifax was a fairly decent city to bike around in up until last year, and then it went downhill really fast. I don't know if it's because the traffic is overwhelming the road capacity so car drivers feel the need to drive as fast as they can through any possible (or impossible) gap, but I really wish it would stop. All I can hope for is the price of gas to go up so high it'll force a lot of people off the roads, but I'm not holding my breath on that one since the price of gas disconnected from the price of crude earlier this year...

Wednesday, October 24, 2007 8:19:00 pm  

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