Dangerous Drivers Thread, vol. 2

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zzwergel
Member
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Two illegal passes on East St.

Between Perrysville Ave. and Eula St.

Between Lareda St. and dogleg over I-279


ptrq
Participant
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Today at the intersection of Penn Ave and the 31st Street Bridge, a man in a blue car was screaming at me from across the intersection. At first I didn’t realize what the sound was, but when I biked passed him I realized it was directed at me. I didn’t understand anything except for “… the wrong state for that…”. Also, when I biked passed him (going in opposite directions) he had a camera out and was pointing it at me.

 

I’m used to the occasional asshole driver shouting incomprehensibly about bikers being on the road blah blah, but the fact that he photographed / recorded me has me kind of spooked. I’m also wondering if perhaps I did something wrong – I had just come out of the side road from Smallman st that runs along the bridge, messed up getting onto the sidewalk on the bridge like I’d intended and so I had to end up making a quick change of course to right myself back onto the road. Sorry if that’s confusing, it’s hard to explain.

I’m wondering if this is common, if anyone else has had a run in with this guy, or perhaps where he might be posting whatever he’s recording.


ShooFlyPie
Member
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Welcome to Yinzerville PTRQ. I get out to other cities such as NYC and Boston every so often and never had the ridiculous harassment that you get in this town. Your typical yinzer sees a guy on a bike and it triggers them.

Friday I had a guy trying to run me off the road and honking at me. He pulled over and was yelling that bikes didn’t belong on the road and we should pay insurance and blah blah blah. I just pulled out my cell phone and started filming him. He walked up to me and hit it out of my hand. The incident is all on film and I am deciding if I should take it to the police to file an assault charge. I have his license plate and the whole incident of him driving aggressively and the simple assault as well. I was not injured and my phone was not damaged. I am deciding if getting this guy charged is worth it if it would stop him from doing this to other cyclists as well.


Drewbacca
Participant
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If you have the time, it’s worth it just to have the paper trail. Anyone willing to do that is capable of a lot more… not just harassing cyclists, but, domestic abuse and animal abuse at the very least.


paulheckbert
Keymaster
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Yes, I think an assault charge makes sense. If you have the video, that should be pretty convincing.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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I got pushed off my bike by someone who jumped out of a car to harass me, a few years back. Complete with front and rear video, I went to the cops, filed the paperwork, but end result, no charges pressed. I do have a name, address, plate number, and I think I know his date of birth, too, at least to a month if not a specific date. He’s harassed me a second time, too, probably not knowing he’d tangled with me previously and that I recognized him.

Point being, though, by going through that process, even down to paying the $15 for your own personal copy of the police report, may be worth the trouble. Actually taking him to court might not, but I didn’t get that far.


Dave
Member
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I had the misfortune of meeting a local this morning in Squirrel Hill while leaving Giant Eagle.  Heading north on Murray just right of the center of the lane, approaching red light at Darlington with no cars approaching in the other lane a tan Lexus buzzed past without even crossing the yellow lines at which point I yelled HEY and held up 4 fingers. When he stopped at the light, he opened his door and calmly asked if I would like to discuss it on a side street, and I said yes. When he pulled over and got out of his car, his calmness immediately disappeared and he approached shouting at me for being in the middle of the lane, called me a few not approved of on prime time names, said he oughta punch me out, cocked his arm back, then said I was lucky I was an old guy. At which point I asked him how old he was, since he appeared to have at least as much gray in his receding buzz cut and scruffy beard than I do. (I don’t have a buzz cut, but my ponytail is still brown towards the end.)

I did get his license  which I will try to post before he drove off. Then a college aged guy walked up and said he watched the whole thing, saw him nearly hit me, and offered contact info as a witness. I declined but thanked him for offering and witnessing. Of course the assailant was not wearing a mask when he got in my face (I had on two and have gotten both shots) and he did not smell like alcohol. His bumper sticker said Pitt Powerlifting, so maybe it was ‘roid rage.

This was a truly dangerous driver. Look out for him.     https://flic.kr/p/2kH2Vgg


Mick
Participant
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This is a tip I’ve tossed out before (maybe TOO many times.   When you you feel the need to yell some curse at a driver,  consider yelling “DRUNKARD!”   Of all my habits, that is the best one.

Two good reasons.

First you get the sympathy of any bystanders.   If you yell “Slow down, #$#&@!”  then to most witnesses, you are just being a #$#&@ cyclist.   Really.  Heck, I’ve thought that myself when a cyclist has let loose with a loud string of obscenities.   Also, the motorist can (maybe.  sometimes.  I guess.) defend violence by the “fighting words” doctrine.

I got an ovation from pedestrians at the sidewalk-traffic-intensive Forbes and Bouquet once for shouting “YO!  DRUNKARD! GO THROUGH A RED LIGHT!”

Second- sometimes, when you shout DRUNKARD at a driver, they suddenly straighten up their act.   That happened to me in the Southside on St Patrick’s  Day once.

Both of those incidents were exceptionally gratifying.

 


ShooFlyPie
Member
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Has anybody else ever experienced rager activity on the southern part of Beechwood where there is no bike lane but it is rather a shared lane with both signs and sharrows? This week I have had my second most intense road rage incident on this section. The last one was with a guy in a pickup truck many years ago that tried to run me down in the sharrow lane here. This Monday on April 27th I was cycling towards Browns Hill road here and was on the section around Luster street where you must take the lane due to cars parked on the side and cars coming the opposite way. A rager with his wife and kid did not like that and buzzed by at a high rate of speed then continued spraying me with windshield wiper fluid. The physics major got to the light a whole 10 seconds before me so I filmed him. I never act threatening and just film these assholes. This man gets out of the car and keeps raging on and pushed me so I called the cops.

The cops said maybe you should be over to the far right and maybe I should just stay off “major roads” like Beechwood.  I told him I have every right to be in the lane in this section, and Beechwood is a sharrow lane and maybe the rager shouldn’t be raging down Beechwood. He was saying I should have been over the far right by the line (next to the parked cars). I have been having an email exchange with Cory O’Connor and the commander about this incident and how amazing it is that the cops don’t understand the law. While they did admit I was the victim they were almost victim-blaming me as if I lead it on by cycling in the lane in a narrow sharrow lane on a 25MPH street clearly marked as a bikeway. The wife of this lunatic was saying to the cops defending her abusive husband, “He is one of those asshole cyclists who thinks he owns the road!” as justification for trying to take my life. It made me infuriated. The cops agreed with her. I am an asshole who deserved it I guess for cycling with the rules of the road. They didn’t get charged with a thing.

Why did the city put speed humps in the section that already had bike lanes and not down here where it is a shared roadway anyways?

Thanks

 

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Mick
Participant
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Shoo fly pie –

Thanks for calling the cops on that guy.   And thank you for following up with the city on that  alleged policeman.   Maybe Bike-pgh can help you push the issue?

To continue what I said above-

In this kind of interaction, you can maybe influence the police  by emphasizing,  “The guy was driving like he was DRUNK,”  and, “The guy got out of his car and raved at me like he was DRUNK or something.”   My impression is that the phrase DRUNK DRIVER is triggering for law enforcement.  Once a cop is obligated to give a sobriety check, the driver falls into the ” possible perp” category.

 

 


Dave
Member
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Is there a journalist anyone knows that might pick this up? Seems newsworthy to me.


ShooFlyPie
Member
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I did tell the cops that I didn’t have proof of the close buzz. I have a top of the line new helmet cam coming.

Reviewing my cell phone video that I pulled has everything from after the moment he raged past me to when he approached me to shove me. I reached for my phone after he buzzed by. It starts right after he is spraying me with wind shield washer fluid.

 


Mick
Participant
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He shoved you?  He committed battery and you have it on video?  You could pursue this, dude.


ShooFlyPie
Member
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My video of his actual shove is not that great in that I had to unclick my cleats out of my one pedal and position myself defensively or I would have been shoved easily off my bike. During this time I restarted the video and it is a short clip of him in my face before I called the cops for him assaulting me. I have everything from them yelling at me about how I was “in their way” to him exiting his car and approaching me. He was revved up before even coming to put my camera on him. I had to rewatch the videos and I am sure I could probably prosecute him with the evidence I have for simple assault if not harassment to a lesser extent.

Honestly, I doubt I will go after it. This whole thing is negativity in my life I don’t want. I want to move past it, but I do get pissed when I am out for my evening bike ride and have to come home feeling happy I get to see my family that day. That shit should not happen. The fact that this guy would want to risk taking me from my son so he could get to the light quicker still boils my blood and makes me feel criminal prosecution is worthwhile.

Also, sorry about posting this negative stuff on the forum. I typically only post something when something negative or bad happens. Typically I am cycling very happily and minding my own business and life till I have to encounter a person like this and feel the need to post it.


Mick
Participant
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Shoo Fly Pie,

I’ve been overcritical in this thread.  You called the police, and that is a huge positive step.  It might modify that guy’s actions in the future.

It was a damn shame that you got Derek Chauvin for the police response, but you called THAT out to politicians.

There’s been too many times when I coulda shoulda woulda called the cops and I failed to.  And I think that is true for most of us.


deezus57
Member
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Dave. I encountered the same individual (I think a few weeks before then). He passed me on Darlington (I took the lane because cars on both sides, he pushed past me with about an inch to spare). Anyhoo, turns right at Murray and I catch up after he parked, got out of his car and went in the post office. I wait, he comes out and I ask him why the heck he risks my life to wait in line at the Post Office. Of all the dumb things. He gets angry, wants to fight, I tell him he should make better life choices. Also, that it makes sense he is angry, because, I get angry when I am wrong also. Few choice words and he revs off to the light. Couldn’t help it but give it to him for the 30 seconds he was at the light and rode off. Guy was an ahole.


paulheckbert
Keymaster
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I bike that section of Beechwood several times per month but so far I’ve never experienced anyone that hostile there. Drivers like that need to lose their licenses. I agree that the cyclist-blaming behavior of the police that you report is unacceptable.

One time, while walking (not biking) across the intersection at Greenfield Rd & Hobart St, crossing with the walk signal, an impatient driver (who had a green I think) failed to wait a few seconds to let me cross and did a left turn just a foot or two behind me, close enough that I was easily able to reach out and casually slap his driver-side mirror with my left hand. This set him off and as I continued to cross the street he suddenly stopped his pickup truck in the middle of the road, got out, gesturing like he was going to start a fight. I kept on walking, and yelled “learn to drive” or something like that. He gave up and drove away while I watched over my shoulder to make sure he wasn’t following me.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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I’d have to do some serious digging through this site, but I’m pretty sure we had a series of situations in that same part of town a good five, seven, eight years ago. Seemed like a repeat offender. Most of a decade on, I’m sure he has a different car.

Please, get plate #s when these happen. After each such encounter, I pull off and tweet. As to the camera, I always yell the plate # as loud as I can, in case the camera itself didn’t get a clear view. I did exactly that with Darlene Harris. At the time of the encounter, I did not know who I was dealing with.


Dave
Member
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I posted a clear photo on my post of my guy’s car as he left. I keep looking for it again in the Forbes Murray corridors, but have not seen it since.


Dave
Member
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Riding north on Negley approaching Baum I had the misfortune of having more than one driver pass very closely. When I caught up to this car, I pulled up on their right, it took them a moment to be distracted from their phone conversation and see me gesturing at their window. When I was lowered a bit I said they passed me way too close, are legally required to give me 4 feet of clearance and they should hang up and drive, their reply was “Fuck off!”

When I took the above picture, they appeared to take my picture in their left side mirror. Then they accelerated almost hitting the dark car on their left which was pulling into their lane.

Note I did not identify the driver’s age, appearance, and apparent sex as it was irrelevant to their behavior. But for identification purposes, it was a perhaps mid 20’s blonde appearing female wearing a blue and white baseball styled cap.

 


The Iguana
Participant
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…the license KRN.. alludes to her being a Karen..with no vowels..


Dave
Member
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Interesting catch, Mr. Lizard. So I wonder what and where she posted things about me harassing and threatening her with having to follow traffic laws.


ShooFlyPie
Member
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I’m done cycling. I’m 41 and started to get into road cycling heavily around 31. It is approximately 10 years now of being an everyday cyclist. Since my incident in April, I literally have done nothing but loop around Schenley park or local roads around Squirrel Hill because I was getting sick of road ragers. I went from a hardcore roadie doing century rides and long day all-day rides every weekend to looping Schenley and staying away from cars. It has been a vast change in a short amount of time. I got used to dealing with road rager issues throughout cycling, but as I got over 40 I started to severely get sick of them. The negativity after an incident gets to me so much more now.

Today I am just cycling down E. Circuit Drive downhill doing my downhill speed. This white van with a plate PA YSG-3309 sped around me to pass in the park. I literally didn’t do a thing to this guy. All I literally did is put up my hand with NO fingers up. It was just a “why are you passing so fast in a park?” type of gesture. He is rampaging down Circuit drive with mothers pushing strollers, cyclist out, pedestrians, etc. I kept riding downhill behind him to the stop sign at Schenley Road to where he wound down his window and proceeds to harass me calling me homophobic names. I did NOTHING to provoke this man. He was yelling about me running a stop sign. But the thing is he passed me downhill on E. Circuit Drive into W. Circuit and I stopped behind him at the sign at Schenley, so I don’t know what stop sign I ran around this guy. He was yelling about how he “hates you guys”, and calling me all kinds of sexist and homophobic names. He seemed so angry and I never even made did a thing to this man other than lift my hand. He kept driving behind me on the shoulder of Schenley drive where a large number of walkers and cyclists are. He drove by multiple times and would turn around again threatening violence saying “I will get you next time, F*g”. I didn’t even know why this guy was triggered.  In the photo, I clipped from a video he appears to put on gloves when turning around and had an object in his hand he was going to throw at me. He clearly threatened me in the video with violence. In my video, I was literally asking him to leave and he would not leave me alone. He turned around multiple times coming at me. If not for other walkers, drivers, and people in broad daylight I don’t know if this guy would have resorted to other violence. Again, I did nothing to this man to start this interaction.

I am sick of this shit.  If I take this to the police it will be scoffed at on my tax dollars. If I take this to the city councilman it will be a waste of his time. I guess I can’t even bike in the park I pay taxes for now. I can’t even enjoy the last God Damned bit of roads I take my damn bike now without some violent neanderthal threatening violence there. I am done with this shit. If anybody wants a carbon fiber Norco Section or a Steel Norco Search I might be selling my bikes. I got into cycling as a substitute for other addictive behaviors I had and fought through my 20s. Seriously though, out of all of my addictions cycling has had more negativity than any other one only behind alcohol. It’s time to find a substitute for cycling now.  I’m sick of trying to cycle off work stress at lunch being threatened and harassed by angry violent thugs for no reason. The police in this city never give two shits either, and I pay their damn salary. I’m getting back into walking or hiking only. I would rather walk into an angry bear’s path in the woods on some peaceful hike than some riled-up jackass trying to threaten me with his van on a park road while I do my lunch loops.  Sorry for the rant.

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Mick
Participant
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Damn.

 

That’s a bummer Shoo fly


paulheckbert
Keymaster
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I recommend filing a police report. You’re probably right that it won’t get this rage-filled, dangerous driver appropriately punished, but maybe the police would call him and talk to him about the incident. Also, you might consider putting your video on youtube and share a link to it here. If all car-on-bike road rage incidents got reported, it would help in the long term.

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