Urban Velo

Cyclists Endanger Motorists

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Remember that next time an impatient motorist lays on the horn and passes you close and at speed, that it is in fact the motorist that is in danger. At least according to Bill Krawietz, the Mayor of Bulverde TX, and his recent editorial for My San Antonio. His reasoning is beyond flawed, but certainly worth reading just in case this wise guy ever runs for office in your town. Politicians from Texas have a certain way with words… Luckily for the rest of us this guy is mayor of a town of less than 5000 people.

I was sitting in the parking lot of the post office April 15 when suddenly there was a loud and abrupt knock on my truck window. It turns out that a couple of cyclists did not like me passing them between Luke’s Chevron and Bulverde Hills Drive.

Traffic was quite heavy at the time. School had just let out, there was a scramble to get income tax checks mailed and the evening rush was beginning. My patience was already worn thin and being stuck behind a couple of slow-moving cyclists riding side-by-side did not help.

So I gave a brief tap on the horn. The cyclists changed formation to single file. Then a break in traffic gave me the opportunity to accelerate and pass on a stretch of road that has a double-yellow center stripe which you can’t cross.

I had to pass them quickly, but nobody was hurt and there were no close calls.

When someone is dressed in their work clothing and using a bicycle to get to work, that’s one thing.

However, it’s another matter when someone is joyriding on an expensive bicycle all decked out in riding attire on probably the most dangerous roadway in the city.

What can we do? The cyclists do legally have a right to the road with some exceptions, but does this mean all motor vehicle traffic must suffer?

Read his entire screed at the official Bulverde TX website (PDF) or at www.mysanantonio.com

17 Comments

  1. TrevorApril 25, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    “What can we do? The cyclists do legally have a right to the road with some exceptions, but does this mean all motor vehicle traffic must suffer?”

    Yes, as long as they are law abiding then you should do so as well. It does not matter if you have had a long day or are in a bad mood. Eventually you will be able to pass the cyclists. You may have a cyclist that does not knock next time and say ” please don’t drive like that.” They put the lock through your window and ride off or attack you? They may have had a crappier day then you?

  2. A.April 25, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    What can you do?

    You can be a polite, considerate, and reasonable person and wait until it is safe for you to pass the cyclists. Key word: SAFE. FOR BOTH PARTIES.

    As the above comment smartly observed – next time, the cyclists may not be so friendly. I keep my U-Lock with me at all times, even if I don’t need it where I’m going, in case people who, in sharing your egocentric lack of foresight, decide to harass me on the road. It keeps my bike secure, and will defend against anyone who decides to become aggressive towards me on the road.

    I do not take pleasure in thinking of my bike lock as a weapon of defense, but it’s always in the back of my mind when I’m on the road: what if someone decides to put my life in danger?

    In short, don’t be a dick. Plain and simple. Mutual respect is the most powerful weapon anyone could ever employ.

  3. MikeApril 25, 2013 at 5:18 pm

    Actually, cyclist have every right as a motorist, unless expressed by signage. It was also completely legal to ride side by side. It was a courtesy to you for them to get in a single file line. As a person in a public position, you should be ashamed for your closed minded and clearly unprofessional demeanor.

  4. chadeauApril 25, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    Yet another reason to get (safely) out of Texas.
    What we have here is a self-admission of a moving violation commited by a City official-the Mayor, no less.Bill Krawietz has chosen to utilize his automobile to recklessly endanger himself,fellow motorists and two cyclists by passing across a double yellow delineation on “the most dangerous roadway” in town.Has anyone reported this to Mayor Bill’s local law enforcement? Way to go,Bill. Thanks for being a dick,and then whining about it.(the two ‘joyriders’ did exactly as they should have,and you committed a moving violation,nullifying their attempts at staying safe)

  5. MaryApril 25, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    It’s always about me, isn’t it. We have become a selfish, inconsiderate, self entitled society. We no longer care about sharing, or even common courtsey. Just because we are on the least dangerous vehicle doesn’t mean you can pick on us. I believe the laws should be severe enough to make drivers think twice about being agressive towards cyclists as well as pedestrians. And the so called mayor of Bulverde needs to ride a bike or run, he’s not the figure of health. Mr. Mayor of Bulverde TX,.Bill Krawietz, do you not think that maybe a cyclists we keep some clothes at our work place just for that purpose of changing into our cycling attire so drivers WILL notice us ? Ignorance….at it’s finest. I have thought of carry an air horn to blow at drivers while texting and driving to get their attention
    FOR my safety’s sake.

  6. Jason FApril 25, 2013 at 6:29 pm

    As there were many flaws in the logic that the mayor spoke about, I will just touch upon a few. Yes, I will admit that it is somewhat of a loss of time and money (if you count the gas spent during the additional acceleration to pass a cyclist) to be stuck behind a slow cyclist, but I can assure the mayor and any motorist that is not a joy to have a car following closely and impatiently behind us; it is actually quite nerve racking. But time and money are far more important than personal safety and the safety of others. Secondly, the mayor kept on referring to the roads as “our roads,” as if they belong to the motorists. Granted this is not a bad argument because motorists pay for and pay to maintain those roads in the taxes and fees they pay to have their cars on the roads. But what the mayor does not realize is that many cyclists do in fact own registered cars in addition to their bikes. I think it is important for cyclists to choose routes that are most comfortable for them as riders, but their choice in the route should not be governed by traffic or the mayor because he is in a hurry one day when he paid his taxes at the last possible minute.

  7. JakeApril 25, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    we don’t endanger any motor vehicle u endanger us unless its a motorcycle then we both watch out. I ride fixed and get hit by more then me hitting them it is cars that are bigger so u need to let them do what they want. latterly all my friends who r bikers with me just called u a Jack Ass. so u be careful where u put this cause as I know of u carry a 2 ton car vs a 10-35 pound bike so u will win. So you should watch out for others like me and cops don’t like seeing u see this more bikers as in bicyclist get killed a year the any car crashes having to do with two cars or a semi truck. by the way im 14 and I have been hit 6 time cause people like u think its are fault or its the fact we were in your way. if I was them I would have knocked on your window then had a friend talk to u while I deflate your tires or take your lock ring wrench to your windows and mirrors so be happy I not me. Your a jerk who need to learn that not all off us r fat and like u lazy so we bike or run or what not active. so how bout you ride a bike for a day and see how many times you almost get hit biking the street by the law and then say what you just said.

  8. SeanApril 26, 2013 at 12:24 am

    “What can we do?”

    How about, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

    I’m guessing the cyclists wanted people to treat them with courtesy and consideration.

    Mayor Krawietz apparently wants to be endangered by self-absorbed, impatient and judgmental nitwits.

  9. screaming71datsun510April 26, 2013 at 12:33 am

    I no longer fear stupid drivers I give them more than enough space to pass, but if they buzz me or put my life in danger the rules change. I don’t ride alone. And there are few drivers out there that can attest to that, and now they think twice before putting a cyclist life in danger.

  10. Arizona HoosierApril 26, 2013 at 1:15 am

    I live in Arizona now, for 19 years I’m from Indiana, for first 23 years. Last summer I went back and visited friends in the Evansville area (Haubstadt) and borrowed my buddies bike for a ride. I had combines, tractors, semis, and regular drivers yield to me, pull of for me to pass, waved at me like I was their friend and even one car followed me for 5 minutes even though I waved them around, she didn’t pass because she was patient to wait until she got to the road she was turning right onto. In AZ, People speed to pass so they can turn right, in front of you. It’s all about being friendly and respectful to others. Calm down, slow down, smile, and enjoy others simple pleasures. People are in such a hurry to go nowhere and do nothing.… seriously, where are they going?

  11. PAHRNApril 26, 2013 at 7:47 am

    Another reason those in the other 49 states should support Texas’ right to secede!

  12. ReallyApril 26, 2013 at 8:20 am

    What can you do? First off we are supposed to take some white dude with an 80 jerry curl hairdo seriously?
    And, double line or not you are allowed to pass slower moving traffic if it can be done safely. If it is not safe to pass, you can not pass. Period!
    And if cyclists cause you to slow down a bit, so what? Do you cuss out farm tractors…wait, I know farmers, yes you do. You are all big and tough in your car or truck. I wonder how tough you’d be on a bike sparky…
    And what in the name of green apples does the type of bike rider have to do with anything? You a little jealous cause the guys in spandex are not an overweight fat slob like you? Or are you ashamed that you were a little aroused at at their firm tight buts wiggling around in front of you?
    Since you seem to be so self absorbed, arrogant and narcissistic about bike riders, tell me your thoughts on women and their place in the world, minorities and gays.

  13. ErnestoApril 26, 2013 at 9:35 am

    I used to live near there. This is the stretch of road he’s talking about: http://goo.gl/maps/1YMa5

  14. Come&Take-itApril 26, 2013 at 9:53 am

    Hey, Guido! If you don’t like the roads in Texas.., Go back to Jersey!

  15. RAPApril 26, 2013 at 10:43 am

    I didn’t know Kenny Powers had such a hard time with cyclists…

  16. JebisApril 27, 2013 at 3:09 am

    The mayor of some hick town in Texas doesn’t like cyclists? What’s the news here, again?

  17. IanMay 3, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    Very interesting. I guess everyone has a right to the road but it brings up a couple of interesting points.

    Years ago I was pulled up by the local police for riding 2 abreast on the road. He even had the audacity to report me to the local headmaster where I was on the carpet big time. Yet I was in the right – 2 abreast was allowed.

    And the other – just now there is a bit of a police blitz on some cyclists here on the local roads (Brisbane Australia).

    Why? Because, although they are legitimate road users, they tend to flaunt the road rules by not stopping at at STOP signs and sneak through red lights at pedestrian crossings. One blind crosser was taken out and left bruised and shaken – cyclists are ‘silent death’ – they don’t make a noise

    So there are short comings on both sides. If you are a cyclist you are a legitimate road user and should be treated with respect – but that has to be reciprocated with an adherence to the road rules.

    Enough of a rant – enjoy the day

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