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Should cyclists be compelled to use the cycle lane?

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Should cyclists be compelled to use the cycle lane?
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AkamiaUser avatarPosts: 152Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2016 11:41 pmLocation: Alaska Gender: Time Lord

Post Re: Should cyclists be compelled to use the cycle lane?

*SD* wrote:
Akamia wrote:Here in Alaska – at least, my part of it – we don't have many bicycle lanes. We do have them, but I think I only know of maybe one or two.

Any time I ride a bike, I use the sidewalk unless there is indeed a bicycle lane, in which case I use that instead.

I didn't know people actually rode them on the pavement in some places; in my town, and other places I've been in the US, that's practically unheard of. Closest a bike gets to riding on pavement is when there is no sidewalk, but even then, they don't ride in the path of the cars on the road.

Of course, maybe riding on the road is more common here than I think it is, and I don't know because I don't get out much. :geek:

I'd love to live in Alaska!

So where does the law stand there on whether cyclists have to use the cycle lanes or not? Sounds like the cyclists there have more sense than the ones here!

I looked into it a bit, and as far as I can tell, cyclists aren’t compelled to use bike lanes, per se. Hell, the laws don’t necessarily prohibit riding on the road, either. At least in Anchorage, however, there are laws that could be enforced if a cyclist becomes a hazard.

But yeah, most cyclists I’ve seen just use the sidewalks. Now that I think about it, I think I remember seeing only one cyclist around here riding on the road... in front of my family’s car on our way home, actually. I forget when that was. I remember being flabbergasted at the time, though.

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Sun Jul 01, 2018 6:17 pm
SparhafocPosts: 2648Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Should cyclists be compelled to use the cycle lane?

I do have a single story on this from when I was younger and lived in the UK, albeit not about bike lanes but about biking encounters.

My first job after graduating was temporary, deciding whether to go off to another country or return for a master's. Soon after getting the job, I moved house to live with some mates but it was a few miles from work. I used an old racer bike to go to and fro, and used the roads throughout the Summer, but as it turned to Winter the journey was often in the dark both ways.

There was this one great big fucking hill over train tracks on the way home which had just had a bus lane installed. I never felt particularly safe on the road going up, so I'd hop onto the pavement, which was actually wider than a typical road lane and hardly had any pedestrians. One night, I'm labouring up that hill going all of a couple of miles an hour and a youngish businessy type stepped in front of my path a few metres ahead, so I moved further to the side, and he once again moved with me. He kept sidestepping into my path until I stopped and then barked at me to get on the road.

I'm not really sure what the point of behavior like that is. If someone's being dangerous and incautious about the welfare of pedestrians by racing around and dodging between them, fair enough that's dickish... but on that hill going up, I was hardly a threat to anyone. There has to be some tolerance by all concerned.

Actually, on the whole, I think the onus is mostly on car drivers to appreciate that their mechanically powered tonne of steel is a serious threat to all around them and to be excessively cautious and respectful of the well-being of everyone, including cyclists. I am sure some cyclists can be dicks, but they've still got a lot more to lose with an ugly encounter with a motor vehicle than vice-versa and that should, in an ideal world, translate to more tolerance from those who pose the most threat.
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Sun Jul 01, 2018 7:33 pm
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