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  1. #1
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    What's "the law" about sharing a road with a roadie

    I'm going down the loooong hill on 93 going north, down towards the light at the turnoff to Eldorado Springs Blvd. There's always a roadie there doing maybe 35 where us drivers are doing 55. There's inches to spare to the biker who's hugging the white line on the right, there's loads of traffic in the other lane going the other direction (south) so it's not like we can all go into the other lane to give the roadie some mythical "law defined" space.

    So, what's the law? Is passing this rider with not really much clearance OK? If the guy hits a rut and swerves in front of me am I technically at fault? Hope it doesn't happen but someone has mentioned that "the law" requires I give this rider some law-defined space for him to swerve around obstacles. Two things are for sure in that scenario: he'll ram into me or somebody else and he'll be in a world of hurt.

    No one is more considerate of a biker on the road than I am but the last thing on my mind was slowing down to give this guy some space if I can't go into the other lane to do so.
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  2. #2
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    The rule is three feet. Lanes are a minimum of 12 feet wide in general. Surprisingly your car is actually about half if it. Even if your car was 8 feet wide, you still can hug the center line and give the cyclist clearance--assuming they are not in the lane.

    Funny, you always see a roadie.... of the 300 times I have driven that road, I have maybe seen three. You have bad luck.

    93 is a dangerous road for cars....to ride bikes there is like skydiving we a poorly packed chute and no backup.

  3. #3
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    If they're in...

    Your crosshairs, 'punch it'...

    J/K, just wait for them to finish their text, 'sent from their iPhone..."
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  4. #4
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    Oh come on...

    Have you no common sense? Don't buzz the guy, don't hit the guy. How hard can that be?

  5. #5
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    Im not sure but im thinking we need a 2 page thread on it.

  6. #6
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    It depends on whether he's wearing Lycra or not.

  7. #7
    Rolling
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    Tough crowd.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuckred
    Have you no common sense? Don't buzz the guy, don't hit the guy. How hard can that be?
    +1 for common sense; why was this question even posed?

    I don't care how considerate you might be. Without application of common sense, best intentions can kill people just as fast as any other d!psh!t moves.
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  9. #9
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    Funny how the morning after I start this thread there's a front page story in The Post about the 3' rule. OK, my car is just over 6' wide. Let's say I don't really have an opportunity to hug the left line 'cause there's a line of cars doing the same coming the other direction. At 55 mph. I'd sure like to clear them by as much as I can, a head-on being a poor way to start the day.

    Now we've got the roadie trying to hold his line let's say a foot from the right white stripe. My 6'+, my 2' clearance of the white stripe on my left (hold your hands in front of you 2' apart, not much is it?), the roadie's swerving side to side with some maniacal grin on his face ("boy, I feel so alive!"). OK, technically he's got his 3'. But it sure doesn't allow for much error on his part which is my whole point.

    Slight miscalculation=death just seems a weird way to approach a Saturday morning ride.
    But then I've never had the roadie's desire to ride in heavy fast moving traffic.
    A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett

  10. #10
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    hmm...

    I ride that stretch on my road bike all the time, same direction. Probably close to 20 years now. And I drive it 5 days a week home from work. It is not that difficult. Really. There is generally plenty of room to pass as a driver. If there is a lot of traffic coming the other way, just slow down a little bit until you have a window, then give the cyclist 3 feet. As a cyclist I have never been buzzed of scared by a driver. I avoid that route during morning rush hour coming in to Boulder because of the volume--(and because I am usually on my way to work) just makes sense, but otherwise no problem.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by xcguy
    Funny how the morning after I start this thread there's a front page story in The Post about the 3' rule. OK, my car is just over 6' wide. Let's say I don't really have an opportunity to hug the left line 'cause there's a line of cars doing the same coming the other direction. At 55 mph. I'd sure like to clear them by as much as I can, a head-on being a poor way to start the day.

    Now we've got the roadie trying to hold his line let's say a foot from the right white stripe. My 6'+, my 2' clearance of the white stripe on my left (hold your hands in front of you 2' apart, not much is it?), the roadie's swerving side to side with some maniacal grin on his face ("boy, I feel so alive!"). OK, technically he's got his 3'. But it sure doesn't allow for much error on his part which is my whole point.

    Slight miscalculation=death just seems a weird way to approach a Saturday morning ride.
    But then I've never had the roadie's desire to ride in heavy fast moving traffic.
    I'm pretty sure that if you don't believe you can give the cyclist the required 3 feet, and you can't push further to the left due to oncoming traffic, then you must slow down and follow the cyclist at his speed until you have a safe opportunity to pass. There is no law requiring vehicles (or bikes) to maintain the speed limit. I am fairly certain there are no minimum speed requirements on that stretch of road. It is possible for the cyclist to be charged with impeding traffic if the regular flow of traffic is moving much faster than the cyclist and the cyclist does not pull over to allow the impeded traffic an opportunity to pass...although, I am skeptical the police would charge the cyclist that way in your scenario.

    All things considered, even if you have to follow the cyclist a mile or two at his speed (35 mph) before you have a safe opportunity to pass, the net delay to you is pretty minor. I prefer to just slow down and not risk the cyclist's life or my freedom.

  12. #12
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    interesting precedent set

    i'd be really surprised if some co municipalities don't follow suit in the next year

  13. #13
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  14. #14
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    I drive 93 almost every day both into then out of Boulder. I have been amazed at the number of roadies I see on this stretch of road and have come to the conclusion that most of these riders must have a death wish. There is no friggin way I'd ride into work on this road! I've seen several close calls as the cars pass the slower cyclist and the wind catches the bike just right.... Nor is there a shoulder for the cyclist.

    Technically, there is a 3 ft space given to a cyclist. IMHO, I believe it is now the state (or county's) place to provide the space of safety without endangering either the car traffic or the cyclist. This stretch of road has generated long debates regarding the need for a bike path or bike lane. Interesting that nothing has been done as yet....
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by xcguy View Post
    No one is more considerate of a biker on the road than I am but the last thing on my mind was slowing down to give this guy some space if I can't go into the other lane to do so.
    Huh?

    Just slow down and wait 30 seconds until it's safe to pass. Don't buzz the guy and worry less about the legalities of a potential accident and more about avoiding one in the first place. My fault or not, I know how I'd feel if I killed a cyclist or anyone for that matter. For what it's worth I think 93 desperately needs a bath path.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by KarateChicken View Post
    interesting precedent set

    i'd be really surprised if some co municipalities don't follow suit in the next year
    Can I still yell "get off the road Armstrong" to the Touron De France season roadies?

    Good thing they think there's only one race a year.

  17. #17
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    Hey, I didn't dredge up my old thread. The situation that prompted this thread originally was: traffic was stacked up behind me, we're all doing 55, we all come up on this roadie hugging the white line, I'm in front. It seems like he's kinda wobbling back and forth and I sure wanted to get over to the left, cross the yellow line. We're heading down that long hill, going north, with Marshall Mesa on our right.

    But, no, here comes a solid line of traffic coming the other way and they're hugging the yellow line. I'm not gonna ram on my brakes to slow down to this guy's 35 mph with everyone on my azz. So I pass the wobbling roadie at 55 with maybe 12 inches to spare. I chose not to get any more left because I decided wiping out this roadie with a death wish trumped me clipping the fenders of the oncoming traffic. Split decision.

    Maybe I had more room to get over to the left, maybe I passed him closer or farther away than 12 inches. The situation presented itself and was over with in about 3 seconds. Glad nobody got hurt. I wonder if he really felt safe riding that road. I wonder if he ever thinks about his safety. I wonder if I'd have gotten a ticket if he'd wobbled over into my path? I wonder why this thread was bumped back up.
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  18. #18
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    I think elderly drivers holding up traffic in the canyons are a bigger problem than the occasional roadie (it isn't hard to safely pass roadies). Maybe we should be able to perform a pit maneuver when old people are blocking traffic.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by xcguy View Post
    Maybe I had more room to get over to the left, maybe I passed him closer or farther away than 12 inches. I wonder why this thread was bumped back up.
    look a few posts up
    buzzing a cyclist in the manner you describe could be considered harassment
    this thread was resurrected with a topical post

    if you buzzed me like that and i caught up with you, the cops would be the least of your worries

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by KarateChicken View Post
    look a few posts up
    buzzing a cyclist in the manner you describe could be considered harassment
    this thread was resurrected with a topical post

    if you buzzed me like that and i caught up with you, the cops would be the least of your worries
    If you put yourself in a similar position to get "buzzed" like that you need to go see a shrink now about your own death wish before it's too late. I dunno, death by traffic must sound cool to guys like you. At least you'll die knowing you're right, that's all that matters yeah?
    A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett

  21. #21
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    Chicken dude, are you dredging up year old posts just to rekindle a dead debate? I thinks you need to go ride more.
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  22. #22
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by KarateChicken View Post
    look a few posts up
    buzzing a cyclist in the manner you describe could be considered harassment
    this thread was resurrected with a topical post

    if you buzzed me like that and i caught up with you, the cops would be the least of your worries
    Ease up internet tough guy, your last name Lesnar? I doubt anyone on this board would intentionally buzz another cyclist, but there are times, more than not, when I see road riders in dangerous situations / traffic areas riding on or over the white line with no regard to what is going on around them or taking into consideration that MAYBE the next car in line coming at them at 55 is a 85 year old who gets too spooked to move over &.....well. Just saying, it's both parties responsibility to watch out for each other, car & biker.

    Now, time to crack another beer & head to da pool

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by xcguy View Post
    I'm going down the loooong hill on 93 going north, down towards the light at the turnoff to Eldorado Springs Blvd. There's always a roadie there doing maybe 35 where us drivers are doing 55. There's inches to spare to the biker who's hugging the white line on the right, there's loads of traffic in the other lane going the other direction (south) so it's not like we can all go into the other lane to give the roadie some mythical "law defined" space.

    So, what's the law? Is passing this rider with not really much clearance OK? If the guy hits a rut and swerves in front of me am I technically at fault? Hope it doesn't happen but someone has mentioned that "the law" requires I give this rider some law-defined space for him to swerve around obstacles. Two things are for sure in that scenario: he'll ram into me or somebody else and he'll be in a world of hurt.

    No one is more considerate of a biker on the road than I am but the last thing on my mind was slowing down to give this guy some space if I can't go into the other lane to do so.
    It doesn't matter what the law is. No don't laugh, I'm serious; if you hit a guy on a bike, and you're in your car or truck, you're going to get sued. I suggest giving them all the room they want.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yetigirl View Post
    There is no friggin way I'd ride into work on this road!:
    This. Riding on 93 is just plain dumb. I hate even crossing that road on Community Ditch. I question the sanity of those who choose to ride it same as those who ride down 28th Street in Boulder when there is a perfectly good bike lane that runs parallel.

    I still always give lots of room - even for the dumb ones - but ultimately you can't fix stupid.

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