02

Blog

Rogue Riders on Group Rides

Cycling Coach Robert Wilhite recently blogged about the dangers that rogue riders present in group rides.   He gave several examples of a small band of riders who took it upon themselves to ignore basic rules of the road regarding right of way at intersections and barrel through stops, endangering not just themselves but also the many other riders in the pack behind them.

Bike Law has written about problems with group rides.  Check out the “Lost Art of the Group Ride” and comment.

While these riders at the front barreled through stop signs onto main roads with vehicles approaching, the riders in the middle of the pack were left in the precarious position of having to choose between blowing through the stop sign themselves and into a dangerous intersection or attempting to slow down or stop in the middle of a group, exposing themselves and the riders behind them to danger.  Either way, an awful choice to have to make.

On Facebook, this blog post was met with many comments from riders who were familiar with similar situations.   Various complaints were lodged about group rides based on similar experiences.   Calls for stronger leadership and guidelines, as well as to ostracize dangerous riders from the group.   I made this comment, that was met with widespread approval (in the form of 9 Thumbs Up):  As someone who represents injured cyclists I can tell you that these same drivers that we piss off will one day be the jurors from whom we are seeking justice.  If we want the protection of the law we have to abide by the law”

I was pleased to see that my comments were regarded favorably, as I’m always afraid that my position on following the rules of the road is not a popular one in a lot of circles.  However, the part about angry motorists making bad jurors is one that I stand behind because I’ve seen it repeatedly.   I try a lot of cases for bicyclists and can tell you that we’re all painted with a broad brush as scofflaws who selfishly clog up traffic and endanger drivers with no regard for traffic laws or rules.  Whether it’s the actions of reckless cyclists that anger motorists or if it’s some deeper underlying resentment of our freedom, the fact is our conduct on the road has a negative impact on juror’s perceptions and make it difficult to get a fair result in Court.   Yet I believe that we can turn those perceptions around by being more conscientious riders.

Think about that the next time you’re in a position to influence a motorist’s attitude towards cyclists.   If following the rules of the road helps you not only stay safe, but gives you and our fellow cycling brethren a better chance of being treated fairly when we’re negligence of victims, why not take the opportunity to do things the right way.    Even little things, like a friendly wave to a motorist who stops for you at a stop sign, can go a long way.

Comments

Atlanta Slow Roll
Bruce Hagen Apr 18, 2019

Bike Law Ambassador Niklas Volmer and Bike Law Georgia client Jordan Streiff have had enough of the City of Atlanta’s lip service and hypocrisy when it comes to building out meaningful bike infrastructure and decided it was time to do something about it. For some context, the City of Atlanta has promised to invest $250,000,000 […]

Read More
Danny Feldman Apr 17, 2019

ALABAMA BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Alabama. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Danny Feldman directly. Right to […]

Read More
Rick Bernardi Apr 16, 2019

From the beginning, the Bike Law Network has had a singular focus—helping cyclists who have been injured find justice. Well, what’s so special about that? Lots of lawyers take bicycle accident cases. But the Bike Law Network is different—the lawyers in the network are cyclists themselves, and they’re passionately committed to protecting the rights of […]

Read More
Bike Walk Macon, Georgia
Bruce Hagen Apr 11, 2019

Rachel Hollar is the energetic spark behind the success of Bike Walk Macon, the leading advocacy group in the Macon-Bibb County area.   I recently had a chance to catch up with Rachel to discuss how cycling culture has changed in the Macon area since Rachel founded Bike Walk Macon in 2015.    Back in 2015, […]

Read More
Charlie Thomas Apr 11, 2019

LOUISIANA BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Louisiana. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Charlie Thomas directly. Right to […]

Read More
Amy Benner Johnson Apr 10, 2019

TENNESSEE  BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Tennessee. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Amy Johnson directly. Right to […]

Read More
Ann Groninger Apr 10, 2019

NORTH CAROLINA BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in North Carolina. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Ann Groninger directly. […]

Read More
Brian Weiss Apr 10, 2019

COLORADO BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Colorado. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Brian Weiss directly. Right to […]

Read More
Bruce Hagen Apr 10, 2019

GEORGIA  BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Georgia. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Bruce Hagen directly. Right to […]

Read More
Bryan Waldman Apr 10, 2019

MICHIGAN BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Michigan. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Bryan Waldman directly. Right to […]

Read More
Lauri Boxer-Macomber Apr 10, 2019

MAINE BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Maine. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Lauri Boxer-Macomber directly. Right to […]

Read More
Joe Piscitello Apr 05, 2019

PENNSYLVANIA BICYCLE LAWS It’s important to know your legal rights (and duties) when bicycling in Pennsylvania. It is especially important after a bicycle accident (we call them bicycle “crashes” and explain why here). For any questions about the State’s bike laws, or about your rights to the road, contact attorney Joey Piscitello directly. Right to […]

Read More
Load More