BikePGH!

Survey on 4-foot rule

This topic contains 30 replies, has 21 voices, and was last updated by  salty 1 yr, 2 mos.

Viewing 31 posts - 1 through 31 (of 31 total)
 
Author Posts
Author Posts

jonawebb

Private Message

May 21 2013 at 7:21am #

From the Twitter: Bicyclists: How is year-old “4-foot” law working? Are motorists obeying? Your comments sought at http://on.fb.me/ZVKDaB


buffalo buffalo

Private Message

May 21 2013 at 9:25am #

Direct link: https://www.facebook.com/pgtraffic/posts/194649134020121
“It’s been a bit more than a year since the “four-foot rule” for drivers passing to the left of bicycles took effect. I’d be interested in hearing from riders on whether the law is being heeded.”

(This isn’t just some random twitterer, either–it’s PG transport writer Jon Schmitz, so I’d say comments stand a decent chance of being worked into a future story or blog post. If you don’t facebook, you can also email him at jschmitz[at]post-gazette.com.)


Marko82

Private Message

May 21 2013 at 10:51am #

Not on facebook, so email sent

I hope he does a more comprehensive article than just the 4 foot law, but we shall see


brybot

Private Message

May 21 2013 at 12:37pm #

I left a comment on the facebook page…

My major point is that we need better public education of all laws, not just the cycling related ones.


pinky

Private Message

May 21 2013 at 1:43pm #

I left a comment.


Vannevar

Private Message

May 21 2013 at 3:44pm #

I spoke with him today.


StuInMcCandless

Private Message

May 22 2013 at 2:45pm #

Left comment on Fb page, repeated here for posterity:

I think hardly anyone knows what the rule is, and those that do, do not know how to comply. If I am to the right of the white line, I get buzzed at 18″ or less, as if to say four feet doesn’t matter if the bike is on the shoulder. If I am in the right 1/4 of the lane, maybe half of the drivers give me four feet, some give me a dangerous and unnecessary 15 feet. Hardly anyone slows down, maybe 1 in 20.


Elmo

Private Message

May 22 2013 at 4:04pm #

Does it go both ways?

Example: There is a backup on 5th at the intersection with Shady. I filter through traffic and make a right on Shady. Do the cars that I passed have the right to pass me at a distance less than 4 feet because I passed them with a foot of clearance in the previous intersection?


byogman

Private Message

May 22 2013 at 4:30pm #

That has nice tit for tat ring to it, but it doesn’t actually make sense. Big difference between one light vehicle moving at walking speed and a two ton monster and bike moving in parallel. You can control one variable a lot easier than two and the stakes are infinitely lower.

Still, the strong emotional resonance in tit for tat arguments is part of the reason why I avoid this many places I don’t have to. (Though the possibility of being stuck alongside rather than being out ahead when the light turns green (n/a in your right turn situation obviously) is very real and shouldn’t be treated lightly).

I do it, however, when the light turned recently, I’m close to the front, and it’s a slightly uncomfortable next hill for just riding with the flow.


byogman

Private Message

May 22 2013 at 4:31pm #

Or just sometimes when I’m feeling really impatient…


edmonds59

Private Message

May 22 2013 at 5:24pm #

I have several situations on my commute that I have to make that decision. My general rule of thumb is to not filter in a situation where cars would have to immediately re-pass me. That just seems discourteous. If I know it’s a long enough green that I’ll make it through that cycle, I’ll just stay in line in traffic. Ideally I’ll filter forward just enough to be the last vehicle through the green. And yes, the car would have to pass you with 4 feet regardless of the previous course of events.


paulheckbert

Private Message

May 22 2013 at 8:49pm #

I commented there:

I’ve seen little change. Pittsburgh has a lot of drivers that are ignorant of the law: some think that bicycles belong on the sidewalk, and will honk or yell at you if you don’t; some think that cyclists taking a lane is illegal; some think it’s good sport to scare a cyclist by revving the engine as you pass them; many have never ridden a bicycle on these streets and are oblivious to the dangers on the road, such as gravel, storm sewer grates, potholes, and car doors, that force us away from the right edge of the road; and many do not know of the four foot rule. PA needs mandatory driver tests every few years!


gg

Private Message

May 23 2013 at 10:24am #

Overall, my experience on the road has been better this year than in past years. I am not sure if that is because the rule or some drivers feel a little sorry for cyclists due to so many cyclists being killed or injured as reported on the news. I rarely get buzzed if at all and for the most part people have been pretty cool. I primarily ride in the East End, so that probably helps. My downtown rides are a little more hectic, but still I think it is better now. Of course it isn’t great, but still an improvement.

Oh and someone mention, “…some give me a dangerous and unnecessary 15 feet.” I give cyclists a huge space and it isn’t at all dangerous because I do it when there are no oncoming cars. The day I complain about a car giving me a huge space is the day I quit cycling. I love it when a car does that. It is rare, but awesome!


Benzo

Private Message

May 23 2013 at 10:51am #

Buzzed this morning with less than a foot of clearance. License plate HDS-3620, maroon dodge. It’s a commercial transport Van. Handicap stickers, probably for transporting handicapped individuals. This was while I was climbing a hill about 100 ft from my house.

Couldn’t make out the ‘how’s my driving’ phone number. Tried 4 different variations of the number I thought it could be, but didn’t get it.


ajbooth

Private Message

May 23 2013 at 12:43pm #

Benzo, with having the plate number and description, why not call 911?


kooklie

Private Message

May 23 2013 at 2:46pm #

I will second this, “some think it’s good sport to scare a cyclist by revving the engine as you pass them”… I’ve been buzzed by multiple drivers in a row, taking cues from each other – with yells and horn blasts. The 4′ law is impossible to enforce, unknown to most, and ignored by the rest. The folks that give a good distance were probably doing that beforehand anyway. I’ve redirected my routes to more residential streets – I can’t afford to up my life insurance any further. You can’t change this simple truth: folks get in their cars and act like four year olds. We need exclusive bike lanes to be safe.


czarofpittsburgh

Private Message

May 23 2013 at 4:22pm #

I already replied to this a few days ago, but I did so when I was in a good mood. My response probably would have been different after these two incidents on my morning ride from Squirrel Hill to Pitt:


kooklie

Private Message

May 23 2013 at 4:41pm #

to czarofpittsburgh, what type of cam are you using?


czarofpittsburgh

Private Message

May 23 2013 at 6:26pm #

kooklie wrote:to czarofpittsburgh, what type of cam are you using?

It’s a ContourROAM. That video was recorded at 720p, but I’ve since changed the settings to 1080p.


Vannevar

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 6:14am #

http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/local/neighborhoods-city/review-finds-new-bike-safety-law-not-being-closely-enforced-688939/

Interesting data on enforcement.


gg

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 10:19am #

czarofpittsburgh wrote:I already replied to this a few days ago, but I did so when I was in a good mood. My response probably would have been different after these two incidents on my morning ride from Squirrel Hill to Pitt:

Wow, great cam work. That car that clearly buzzed you, was amazingly ignorant! I confront those kind of people a little more proactively. I have a mirror in use and can see people from behind and if they are aiming for a close buzz I will swerve in front of them erratically and to be honest, this has worked for me for over a year. Before people jump al over this maneuver, I am not going to change something that is working. I scare the drivers enough for them to either brake or swerve to the left away from me. Keeping in mind, I am already back over by the time they pass me. If they come close, they get spit on their car. Oh I also turn and spit in their paths letting them know, it is on them if they get a nice hocker. This all is very rare, but I am ready due to wearing a mirror and I don’t trust anyone on the road at all.


gg

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 10:23am #

Vannevar wrote:

Interesting data on enforcement.

The police in our region don’t enforce anything unless it effects them directly. Just look at how poorly mr marv was treated for taking the lane. Why did the police do that? He effected the police and that ego. They wanted to muscle up to him because THEY were effected. The police in our region need a new chief from outside our area. Preferably from NYC. NYC police adopted accountability for sections of the city. It worked. Sure the police hated it at the beginning, but like any change, it is never welcome.


joeframbach

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 10:31am #

Ummmmm. I declare this thread closed.


reddan

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 10:42am #

Ummmmm. I declare this thread closed.

You know, Nazis declared things too.


Marko82

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 10:56am #

Goodwin… Ding Ding Ding!

We have a winner!

Edit: can we add this to the feature list? Just ask’n.


melange396

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 11:00am #

reddan went godwin… whos gonna go rule 34?


Marko82

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 11:06am #

@melange, there IS the six foot rule

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_status_of_striptease


Vannevar

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 11:19am #

The NYC PD is a disaster if you’re not white. Recommending it as a response to the situation you describe is Orwellian.


dmtroyer

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 8:37pm #

Buzzed this evening by a driver on N Highland in East Liberty who proceeded to scream at me “I know the law! I know the law! You were out of the door zone!”.

Exactly. I was out of the door zone. The law gives me that right. The law requires you to give me 4 feet when you pass.

Thanks for listening!


StuInMcCandless

Private Message

May 24 2013 at 9:44pm #

You want Rule 34? Already here on the board. 2008 post


salty

Private Message

May 25 2013 at 6:33am #

I was riding home the other night around midnight and I was really impressed with a big “source one” semi that hung back behind me on Morewood although I was “only” doing 18-20mph. When it started to go uphill I slowed down and let him pass. I thought it was refreshing not to have someone try to force their way past at all costs – I even took the time to send an email to the company about it.

Of course, to balance things out, in the one mile from there to my house I got buzzed twice – once on Forbes where it’s 4 lanes and there wasn’t another vehicle in sight, then on Beeler by an asshole who passed me in “the kink” doing at least 40 (I debated pulling a Mick on that one and diving for the sidewalk because I could hear it coming and I knew exactly what was about to happen). Then to top it off, prick #3 ran the red on Wilkins at Beeler, also at a high rate of speed – luckily I was still 20 feet from the intersection when that happened. Ugh.

Viewing 31 posts - 1 through 31 (of 31 total)
 

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.