Monday, August 10, 2009

To Make My Concerns More Explicit

On those not very frequent occasions that I actually drive, I worry about hitting badly behaving cyclists. No matter how much it's reasonable to expect that drivers should have better awareness of cyclists, it isn't reasonable to expect that drivers have 360 degree awareness constantly. After years of driving experience we all instinctively know when we need to look to the left, to the right, in our rear view mirrors, etc. I think it's perfectly reasonable that cyclists demand (successfully or not) that car drivers get used to them being on the road when they're riding with traffic and roughly obeying lights and stops, but if you're blowing through lights or driving the wrong way down one way streets I might hit you!

And, as a pedestrian, I find that the more cyclists are behaving badly the more likely they are to not notice pedestrians, because they're too busy looking out for the cars.

I don't actually care if cyclists follow the rules 100%, I just expect them to be sensible with an understanding that pedestrians exist, too, and that they cannot have unrealistic expectations of driver awareness. I of course J-walk, but try to do so only if it won't cause a change in driver behavior. Drivers shouldn't have to worry about people running out in front of them.

So, yes, stop at red lights and then proceed if there's no oncoming traffic. At 4-way stop sign intersections of one-way streets, where a lack of pedestrians and cars is clearly visible, blow right through it. It isn't that I demand people obey everything pointlessly, I just think they should be considerate and sensible. Plenty are! Many are not.