A Message to Motorists #7

Dear Motorist,

Now that winter is here, please make the effort to completely scrape the snow and ice off your windows. See, even though clearing a small hole makes it possible for you to stay centered on the road, it may not be enough to see cyclists riding on the shoulder. And those large chucks of ice and frozen snow that fly off your car may hit cyclists and cause serious injury. I know it takes a little extra time, but taking a few minutes may save a life or two, including your own.

Thanks from all of us bike riders, some of whom may be your friends, neighbors, or loved ones.

Idea submitted by Mike in snowy and cold Vermont

6 Responses to “A Message to Motorists #7”

  • Tamia Nelson says:

    Great points all, Alan. Here in the snow belt a lot of motorists, particularly those with high vehicles, don’t bother to clear more than a small viewing window through the ice and snow on each front side window. That means that the rear window is blocked, and worse, that the top carries a plaque of deep snow and ice. Once the vehicle gets moving at highway speeds, that raft of snow-ice on the roof begins to break away.

    I’ve had huge, heavy snow-ice bombs spiraling toward me as I rode the shoulder on the highway. Only by some freak of statistics have I missed being killed by them. Of course, the threat exists for motorists who are following, too. Get one of those sheets of heavy snow on the windshield and the glass could shatter or you could react in such a way that you drive into the path of an oncoming car, or veer onto the shoulder.

  • Steve Fuller says:

    Almost prescient…

    http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2008/12/22/bicyclist_injured_when_hit_by_car_in_champaign

    :(

  • Tamia Nelson says:

    This it terrible. I wonder if we can interpret “veered into the middle of the lane” to be, in fact, “the cyclist was taking the lane.” I do so when coming to an intersection where I’ll go straight while cars turn right into a side street, or when I’ll be turning left. I

  • Steve Fuller says:

    My guess is that he was avoiding something along the road (big pile of snow perhaps?). One reason that I don’t ride right along the curbs when I commute. If I’m out where a car has been, I’ll likely have fewer obstacles to avoid, especially this time of year.

  • Tamia Nelson says:

    I’ve also noticed that when I ride well out, especially in city traffic, most motorists don’t try to squeeze me into the curb. When there’s a clear, wide shoulder on a highway, I ride in it when practicable, but otherwise, I’m in the lane and motorists have to cope. I do not want to be doored or shoved into a storm grate or….

  • andy parmentier says:

    i’ve got an idea..copying from nature, we know that many animals will appear to make themselves larger, in the face of danger (from a pufferfish, to a kitten..)
    why not put a sensor on the rear rack of a bicycle, that can sense a pufferfish eating, kitten- abusing situation unfolding, and activate/deploy a fold-out, brightly lit l.e.d CAUTION sign making you
    appear larger to the oncoming traffic..

 
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