Right turners holding up traffic and turning across bike lanes

Home Forums West Seattle Rants & Raves Right turners holding up traffic and turning across bike lanes

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  • #894789

    KBear
    Participant

    Hey right turners, please familiarize yourselves with the rules of the road. You are allowed to drive in a bike lane to make a right turn. In fact, you are REQUIRED to do it, as it is illegal to turn across another lane of traffic going the same direction. You are putting cyclists at risk by crossing over their path, and you are holding up traffic that would like to make it through the green light. A turn signal would be great, too.

    SMC 11.53.190
    RMC 46.61.290

    • This topic was modified 1 week, 2 days ago by  KBear.
    • This topic was modified 1 week, 2 days ago by  KBear.
    #894803

    sam-c
    Participant

    I am assuming that is not the case when it’s a separated bike lane.
    It difficult turn right from a bike lane when they have plastic stanchions posted in the road.
    You can hold up a lot of traffic waiting to turn right at the Delridge / Orchard intersection, waiting for pedestrians and cyclists. But, hey, I always use my blinker (and am pretty patient).

    #894812

    KBear
    Participant

    Of course protected bike lanes are another matter. I was referring to the non-separated bike lanes, such as on Avalon. Every day I see cars turning right across the bike lane, instead of moving into the right lane first.

    #894819

    Ponderosa
    Participant

    Is there a limit to the distance a car can travel in a non-protected bike lane (not sharrow) before making that right turn, assuming they have yielded to cyclists first? I can’t find anything.

    I know there is a limit to distance traveled the center turn lane (aka two-way left turn lane), which is 300 ft. according to RCW, so I thought there would be a distance limit here too.

    #894985

    alki_2008
    Participant

    How about appealing to bikers to not yell at car drivers that are “in their lane”, even when there isn’t a ‘lane’ for said bikers.

    #895010

    KBear
    Participant

    I doubt that’s happening to you regularly, Alki_2008. I try to be courteous of cyclists, and I can’t remember the last time a cyclist yelled at me. Usually it’s because someone swerved in front of a cyclist without looking, or stopped to play with their phone. Also, cyclists have the right to whichever lane they need. It IS their lane, just as much as it is yours.

    #895017

    mark47n
    Participant

    As a cyclist I’m entitled to ride wherever I feel is the safest. It may be the shoulder, perhaps the right edge of the lane and it may be right in the center of the lane. As an example, when I ride down Avalon every morning, on the way to work, I’m cruising at 30-35 mph I”m right in the center of the lane. it’s unarguably the safest place for me to be. When I ride around Alki I’m usually cruising around 17-20 mph. That’s too fast for the bike path so i’m in the road and not hugging the parking lane as I don’t want to get creamed by a car door I tend to ride a bit right of the center of the lane depending on the traffic and parking.

    As a vehicle I have a right to my space on the pavement. I also have a right under state law to the 3′ passing clearance that the passing vehicle must provide.

    #895026

    Charlie.T
    Participant

    Bike riders ride wherever they want because they believe the roads were originally made for them and they don’t believe in coming to a full stop at any stop sign or light.

    #895141

    mark47n
    Participant

    I’ll address you second statement first. Most cyclists do stop at stop signs and stop lights. In fact, in the red state of Idaho, bicycles are not required to stop at signs and may treat them as yields. Is sounds like your complaint is really a case of sour grapes as this is an enforcement issue. Perhaps cyclists are taking their cues from drivers around here who routinely blow through stop signs.

    On to the road issue! Given that paved roads predate cars cyclists have the upper hand. In the 1880’s the Good Roads Movement came to be. This group lobbied for paved roads for the use of bicycles and other wheeled conveyances because roads in the 1880s were, well, mud and gravel. Cars wouldn’t come on the scene for years yet. So, yes, paved roads roads exist for the use of bicycles in this country. Paved roads, however, predate bicycles by a few millenia.

    Your antipathy for bicycles is clear but the lawful use of bicycles on roads, in WA and in other states, pretty much 49 others, on roads is permitted. Bicycles are allowed to use their space on the pavement as they see fit so as to provide for their safety. They are also permitted to ride 2 abreast in most circumstances. Bear in mind that cyclists riding assertively (running signs and lights not withstanding) is not illegal. It may be inconvenient for you, you may have to display patience for a moment or two, but consider the laser focus that a cyclist must maintain when riding on the road rather than an idyllic bike trail through a forest with bunnies and deer sipping cold clear water at the edge of a brook.

    Yes, I’m one of those cyclists. I periodically run stop signs and red lights and I’d like to see signs be treated a yields as a matter of law (for bikes). I ride assertively and have no problem getting right in the middle of the lane if it’s providing for my safety.

    See you on the road.

    #895316

    alki_2008
    Participant

    @kbear – I’m overly cautious when driving around bikes. I’ve had my car trunk hit/punched by a biker because I was in “their lane” to make a right turn and they didn’t like having to wait behind me. No damage to my car, but still annoying. That happened once. I’ve gotten some dirty looks from other cyclists, usually those that would be classified as “serious cyclists” with their bike-specific outfits. I find that casual cyclists, like those around Alki Beach, are less confrontational and are more likely to slow down or stop if cars or pedestrians are “in their way”.

    Regarding pedestrians. I’ve seen “serious cyclists” go through stop signs and through crosswalks against the red hand, even if there are pedestrians walking through said crosswalk. There was one instance downtown where a cyclist rode through a crosswalk and almost hit a kid. The parent said something like “watch out” to the cyclist and he responded by cursing back as he rode away. It was a busy crosswalk, as several people had just gotten off the water taxi, and we had the green walk sign. I’ve seen plenty of other times that “serious cyclists” have blown through crosswalks and stop signs without even slowing down. I freely admit that I usually don’t make a complete stop at stop signs while biking, but I do slow down and check for cars before going through.

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