Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Cyclist Problem in Rutherford County

Rutherford County Public Safety Committee has just brought up the topic of a Cyclist problem on their county roads in their October 26'th meeting. They now join Williamson County in considering cyclists to be a potential problem. Let's not add Sumner to that list! I borrowed the following from Bruce's recommendation on this topic.

You know all these already but here are Bruce's suggested talking points in addressing the Safety Commission:

1) Local clubs are just as concerned about the problem of increased motor vehicular and bicycle traffic on inadequate roads. We encourage the enforcement of laws upon cyclists who break them. Especially target
. . a) riding against traffic
. . b) no lights at night.
. . c) running red lights, stop signs, etc.
. . d) riding in packs so as to impede traffic for long distances.

2) At the same time we'd like to stress our right to the roads. I don't believe a Tennessee County alone has the right to ban cyclists from any public road.

. . a) What may appear to be obstructing traffic can well be the safest cycling practice. When road conditions make it unsafe to pass it is safest for a cyclist to move far enough to the left in a lane to make the overtaking driver consider the situation. A good cyclists will telegraph when it is safe to pass by moving back toward the right. That cyclist will also pull over if obstructing faster traffic for more than a couple of minutes. That seems like a long time to the following motorist but in reality that may be as soon as the cyclists can do so. We need to educated both cyclists an motorists in effective road sharing.

. . b) speed limits may need to be reduced and adequately enforced on narrow roads with limited sight distance. Farm equipment, wildlife, stalled cars and mail carriers also present real dangers when topping a hill too fast.

3) As rural areas get populated existing roads need to be improved to accommodate the increased traffic.

4) Most cyclists also drive cars and contribute to the building of the roads. Bicycles are very easy on the roads so the time we are not driving, we spare the roads.

5) Thank everyone for the opportunity to have input.

1 comment:

Caledonia said...

Thanks; much food for thought and reflection about how we ride and appear to motorists.