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  1. #1
    since 4/10/2009
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    situation I've not encountered before - questions

    On my morning commute, I was passing through the downtown area where keeping up with traffic is easy. I needed to make a left turn at a light, which was red, so I signaled and moved into the left turn lane. As I came to a stop, I heard a siren behind me. I turned to look, and saw a fire truck headed my way.

    As I was watching the truck, the light changed to green. Under normal circumstances, I did not have right-of-way, as there was no turn arrow. Cars coming the opposite direction were stacked several deep, and waiting for the fire truck to pass. I decided that the safest course of action was to move to the right side of my lane, and turn to watch the fire truck as it passed.

    As the truck passed, the driver and passenger made rude gestures my way.

    Afterward, the driver at the head of the line of oncoming traffic waved me through the light, even though he still had the right of way. I went and politely waved to him.

    If I was driving a car, I would have handled the fire truck the same way. I don't think that's the wrong way. Thinking about calling the station this afternoon.

  2. #2
    Bedwards Of The West
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    Sounds like what I would have done. With an emergency vehicle, everyone's job is just to get out of the way as safely as possible. sounds like you did that.
    You have no excuse for driving to work
    (unless you don't have studded tires)
    (no excuse for that either)

  3. #3
    since 4/10/2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodway View Post
    You are pretty exposed in the left-turn lane and it sounds like you did the right thing. If there was a car stopped to my right in the thru-lane, I would have gotten as close to that car as I could. If there was nobody to my right (and nobody coming) I would have moved over to the curb.
    there was a car there, but they went through the light when it changed. by that time, the truck was close enough that I wasn't taking my eyes off of it.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    On my morning commute, I was passing through the downtown area where keeping up with traffic is easy. I needed to make a left turn at a light, which was red, so I signaled and moved into the left turn lane. As I came to a stop, I heard a siren behind me. I turned to look, and saw a fire truck headed my way.

    As I was watching the truck, the light changed to green. Under normal circumstances, I did not have right-of-way, as there was no turn arrow. Cars coming the opposite direction were stacked several deep, and waiting for the fire truck to pass. I decided that the safest course of action was to move to the right side of my lane, and turn to watch the fire truck as it passed.

    As the truck passed, the driver and passenger made rude gestures my way.

    Afterward, the driver at the head of the line of oncoming traffic waved me through the light, even though he still had the right of way. I went and politely waved to him.

    If I was driving a car, I would have handled the fire truck the same way. I don't think that's the wrong way. Thinking about calling the station this afternoon.
    Truck passed no harm no foul....make rude gestures back if it bothers you...

  5. #5
    Wierdo
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    You are pretty exposed in the left-turn lane and it sounds like you did the right thing. If there was a car stopped to my right in the thru-lane, I would have gotten as close to that car as I could. If there was nobody to my right (and nobody coming) I would have moved over to the curb.

  6. #6
    I need skills
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    if you call

    If you call, describe the scenario, (don't mention the rude gestures) and ask them the proper procedure for you. Once they answer you, your gut may tell you whether or not to mention the gestures. Based on your description, I would have done same.

    If you call the station that truck originated from, they may see bikes in a better light(?)

  7. #7
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    Any situation like that is hard to address without feeling like any response will just make them act worse next time. Although my initial reaction was “geez, that’s terrible, a public employee and role model should not be making rude gestures to the public”, it might be best to let it go. You didn’t do anything wrong and you were the better human being. Pat yourself on the back.

  8. #8
    More than a little slow
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    Well, I've read through your post a couple of times now, NateHawk. I would've done exactly the same thing. I would've expected anyone else to do exactly the same as well. I'm pretty curious as to what the crew of that fire truck expected you to do. If you ever find out ,let us know. The truck did pass you on your right and went straight yeah?
    Cheers, Dave

  9. #9
    since 4/10/2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by dskunk View Post
    Well, I've read through your post a couple of times now, NateHawk. I would've done exactly the same thing. I would've expected anyone else to do exactly the same as well. I'm pretty curious as to what the crew of that fire truck expected you to do. If you ever find out ,let us know. The truck did pass you on your right and went straight yeah?
    the truck passed on my left and went straight, which is where I expected them to go and where I gave them more space to go. I think the car on my right going through the light messed up the situation, but even still, I did not have the right-of-way to turn left since there was a line of traffic that wanted to go into downtown.

    If you call, describe the scenario, (don't mention the rude gestures) and ask them the proper procedure for you. Once they answer you, your gut may tell you whether or not to mention the gestures. Based on your description, I would have done same.

    If you call the station that truck originated from, they may see bikes in a better light(?)
    I was thinking of calling the station and asking the proper procedures for handling the situation, conveniently leaving out (at first) my mode of transport. then after getting an answer, asking if it's any different if I'm on a bicycle. but at this point, I just don't feel like it.

  10. #10
    namagomi
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    If you've actually been insulted by such low-life behavior and have a recourse to justice then you must take it.

  11. #11
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    I would call the FD and inform the captain or whatever the supervisor is called about the behavior of his (or her) people. Don't complain and sound pissed, but politely inform him. What you described is unacceptable behavior for a city dept such as the Fire Dept. They were in uniform and driving a city vehicle. Many Fire and Police personnel are held to a higher standard when it comes to representing the city. These firemen that behaved the way they did to you is unprofessional. I advise informing the fire station supervisor, or if it's a city with many fire stations, city hall to address the incident.

  12. #12
    Monkey Junkie
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    Sounds like you did the right thing. I can't think of any better way of handling that situation. Lame on their part for giving you a hard time for yielding to them. Not sure if I'd call it in, but since they are city employees it does make it significantly more irritating. FD and PD officials are held to a higher standard.

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