The little respect we ask: The Fixer prints some tips for drivers
The Fixer has been looking out for scofflaw cyclists lately - a media favorite. James Schwartz of The Urban Country had a conversation with The Fixer and thankfully may have convinced him that respect goes two ways. Here are James' points for how drivers can respect cyclists:
- When passing cyclists, slow down and give them a bit more space. A pothole could be enough to cause us to swerve, and if you’re passing too closely, a one-foot swerve could put me right in your path.
- When I’m making a legal left turn, please don’t get mad at me because you have to drive around me. I have every right to be in the left-turn lane, and getting angry at me doesn’t help, it only tempts me to break the law and do an illegal left turn to avoid angry drivers.
- When I’m in the right lane, and a streetcar is in the left lane, please don’t try to squeeze through.
- Help us try to get better cycling infrastructure. As a driver, it’s in your interest to have more bike infrastructure. It helps you to get to your destination without bicycles getting in your way. It also makes my ride more comfortable and encourages more people to use bicycles.
- Please don’t park in the bike lane. It forces me into traffic which creates unnecessary conflict between drivers and cyclists. It’s bad enough that many of our bike lanes are in the ‘door zone’ of drivers. Please don’t make it worse by blocking the small space that we have.
- When turning right, please check your blind spot to make sure I’m not passing you. I’ll do my best to pass you on the left side when it’s safe to do so, but sometimes the bike lane passes on your right. I’ll be cautious when I pass you, but if you could take a look, I’d appreciate it.
- Please be sure to check your mirrors before opening your car door.