Thursday, May 14, 2009

Bicycles

I read an awful story today that made me think about sharing a friendly reminder with you all: Now that it's warmer outside, be careful on the road, even when it's dark or raining. A lot of people use bicycles for transportation and exercise, and though some people may not make the best decisions (e.g. riding around midnight on Schoenersville), their lives are no less precious. Some people don't have a choice in their mode of transportation - they cannot afford the bus, the bus route is not convenient for them, and/or they are not legally able to drive a car.

Overall I've been pleasantly surprised with the respect I've received as a bicyclist on local roads here in Bethlehem. I try to be as careful as I can, and make myself as visible as possible without being a distraction, but sometimes things (deer! trash! potholes!) happen. And when they do, I appreciate having the right of way, or not being bullied or scared off the road. I use toe clips, so I need an extra second to unlock before my feet are on the ground. I never got a bike in DC because public transportation was so comprehensive that I didn't need another way to get around, and riding on the roads was too dangerous.

Local businesses or business districts that offer a bike rack are awesome. I would much rather lock up my shiny red wheels on a proper bike rack than to a trash can or drain pipe outside your business - but I also might not visit your business at all if there's no good place to lock up (ahem. CVS). Props to Riverport, Main Street Commons, and the Bethlehem Post Office (among others).

So when you're on the road, please use that peripheral vision that your Driver's Education instructor told you about!

1 comment:

  1. Ugh oh...fighting words...I am not a cyclist fan on roads! It is so frustrating to me! But then again, I am in DC and our roads are very urban...unsafe for riders/drivers to co-exist. In smaller areas like Bethlehem, I could see co-existing. Driving to pick up CJ, I seriously get really frustrated with "sharing" the road! On roads like Capitol View, Georgia Ave, 16th Street, Connecticut, Colesville...it's so dangerous! You can't go around cyclists because of on-coming traffic! And the cyclists are brave for even riding on such roads!

    OK, don't kill me! ;0)

    KIM

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