(This article first appeared here but with a different title and word describing drivers who put other people’s lives in danger. The word used was strong but as a car zipping by you less than three feet away gets your attention, so does the use of a vulgar word. It is re-published below for those who didn’t care for the use of that word and for those who wanted to share it but didn’t because of that word.)
Riding a bike on public roadways can mean placing your life in someone else’s hands. Not always the most comforting of feelings. Drivers don’t have the same degree of fear or vulnerability when passing a cyclist so they often don’t even realize the danger that they are placing another human being under because of their actions. Because of this, drivers have a tendency to be inconsiderate to cyclists. They may not realize it because to them, there is no real threat or degree of aggressiveness that they feel they are placing on anyone. This of course is some drivers as others will blatantly try to place cyclists in danger whether it’s buzzing them or slamming on the brakes in front of them. Regardless of if you’re intending on placing a cyclist in danger or if you don’t think you are, you’re an inconsiderate driver if you do any of the following. This website is obviously catered toward cyclists so please share with all of your non-cycling friends as well to keep all of us cyclists safer on the roads.
You’re An Inconsiderate Driver If…
- you pass a cyclist with less than 3 feet between any part of you’re vehicle and the cyclist. 4 feet if you’re in Pennsylvania.
- you don’t slow down to pass a cyclist.
- you don’t adequately check for traffic in the opposing direction before passing a cyclist.
- you pass a cyclist going into a blind corner.
- you are towing something and don’t give extra space to a cyclist when passing.
- you think cyclists should not be on the roadway.
- you pass a cyclist with adequate space but merge back into the lane before the rear of your vehicle has safely passed the cyclist.
- you ever swerve in front of a cyclist.
- you ever brake directly in front of a cyclist.
- you don’t wait for opposing traffic to subside before passing a cyclist.
- you try and squeeze past a cyclist regardless of circumstance.
- you accelerate excessively as you pass a cyclist with your diesel truck spewing fumes into their face.
- you turn right in front of a cyclist just after passing them.
- you ever run a red-light.
- you ever drive drunk.
- you don’t look for cyclists when turning out from a side road or driveway.
- you turn left across traffic without looking to see if there’s a cyclist on the other side of the road.
- you ever throw anything at a cyclist.
- you don’t stop at cross-walk for a bike path.
- you honk at a cyclist aside from a friendly one AFTER you have passed them. A friendly wave is nice with this as well.
- you’re a trucker and don’t realize the danger you’re placing a cyclist under when passing in an unsafe manner.
- you text and drive.
- you get out of your car parked on the street and don’t first look for cyclists before opening your door.
- you ever yell at or heckle a cyclist.
- you threaten a cyclist in anyway.
- you think your life or time is any more valuable than that of someone else’s.
- in general, you don’t watch out for cyclists.
Drive in a respectful, safe manner looking out for yourself as well as that of others. You are not the only one out on the road. Imagine if you hit a cyclist as this sad, tragic story recounts. You would have a very difficult time living with yourself knowing you took the life of someone with so much left to live. Drive safe. Everyone will thank you.