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Orange County unfriendly to cyclists?

by Moe

If you’re commuting by bike, you might want to think of yourself as unarmed light infantry in a world of fast-moving tanks. Source: The Orange County Register

As I was sitting on the lunch room at work, my co-worker was reading the sports section of the Orange County Register. There was a headline that caught my eye ‘Bikers Beware’. I borrowed the newspaper after he was done and read the article. I’m not so sure I can agree with the article 100%. I’m not an Orange County Commuter, but they seem to have better roads than L.A. county, where I commute by bike. I agree that motorists are not educated about bicycles being entitled to the road and not being considerate to cyclists.

Here’s where I disagree:

But I’m not entirely sure Orange County is grown up enough, considerate enough, careful enough to encourage our residents to bicycle to work

Discouraging people to ride their bikes to work because of fear of riding in traffic is not something that I want to read as a bike commuter from a ‘bike commuter’. Yeah, I’ve gotten cut off by cars when I’m riding my bike, but I have been cut off many times when I drive as well. I feel relatively safe when I ride the streets of LA, it doesn’t mean that I let my guard down, I’m always on the look out for potential hazards.

I believe that educating motorists AND cyclists about sharing the road is something that should be addressed, not instilling and adding fear to potential bike commuters.

 
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3 Responses to “Orange County unfriendly to cyclists?”

  1. Randy says:

    Sounds like this David Whiting got his panties in a bunch when he tried to ride his bike to work. He’s talking about riding his 15 year old road bike to work. I bet the last time he rode it prior to last Friday was when it was new. I agree with you Moe, just beacause you had one bad experience on your bike doesn’t mean that riding is a horrible thing to do.

  2. Well what I see is he is angry that another person was killed commencing the bike to work week…and it shouldn’t have happened. I don’t know how other cities compare..maybe similar..but OC is notorious for inconsiderate drivers. Not just towards bicyclists but even towards other drivers. Too caught up in looking busy on the phone or applying make up, sipping our starbucks, we speed in our oversized trucks and suvs to get to one destination from another because we are so “busy”. It’s just plain arrogance. Not valuing others as much as we value ourselves. This article doesn’t discourage me from commuting by bike though..I love to ride….and that wouldn’t be a solution to our problem here. Hope he doesn’t give up that easily.

  3. alberto says:

    You make a really good point, Moe. Sometimes addressing the dangers of bike commuting without really balancing other factors can be very discouraging. As a new commuter and bike rider I also found that many blogs and web pages can at times have the same effect. And those pages are written by commuters. There are many negative viewpoints out there, especially about how bad cars are, what jerks drivers can be and how it seems that there is an “us vs. them” attitude. Your point in this regard is crucial: we have to teach the public and teach ourselves to share the rode and minimize dangers.

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