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Solving the Sauvie Island problem

Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on March 15th, 2006 at 10:50 am

sauvie island road
[Peaceful Island road]

Sauvie Island is a cycling paradise that sits just a few miles North of downtown Portland. Back in my training days I discovered that including out-and-backs, there are close to 80 miles of flat, scenic roads to ride on. Perfect riding conditions, except for one thing...hostile treatment from motorists. Road rage, taunts, projectiles from car windows, and other dangerous situations are far too common.

This is a problem that is going to keep getting worse until something is done about it, and I don't think we should wait until someone is hurt or killed before focusing our attention on a solution.

I agree with one local cyclist who I heard recently liken the problem to a petri dish that will grow as the temperature gets hotter and more cyclists take to the roads.

But this is not all about crazy, bike-hating motorists. Many cyclists could do a better job of sharing the road by remembering to "single-up" when a car wants to pass and being generally considerate at all times. Also, I have seen many triathletes use the 12 mile main loop as a time trial training ground. I appreciate the importance of a training session, but being considerate of motorists is more important than staying hunched over aero bars trying to set a personal best time.

My ride with Doug Ollerenshaw
[From a recent ride]

Regardless of who is at fault, I think many Island residents just plain don't like city folk (after all they moved there to escape us), much less what they see as nothing more than lycra-clad Lance wannabees. But Sauvie Island is public space and we all have to figure out how to safely share it.

So where do we go from here? Does anyone want to form a Sauvie Island Riders Task Force (SIRTF)? Bad acronym aside, I'm being serious. I know some of you think some people just hate bikes and that's that. But I don't think there's any problem that can't be solved by constructive community dialogue and a few olive branches being extended from both sides. Here are a few ideas off the top of my head to get us started:

  • Kill them with kindness and police ourselves through peer pressure to ride more carefully (always single-file), with plenty of smiles and waves (no matter what it thrown at us).
  • Create a new rider task force to meet with Island residents, the local grange and fire department.
  • Push for new signage on the bridge (it's the only entry point onto the island).
  • Encourage law enforcement to increase patrols on busy weekends.
  • Launch a media and public awareness campaign about the rules of the road.
  • Find the money to widen the roads to increase safety for all users.

This strained dynamic between cyclists, motorists and local residents is not limited to Sauvie Island. Similar situations are brewing in places like Corbett, along Sandy River scenic highway, and on the rural roads outside of Beaverton. I think any solutions we come up with for Sauvie could be applied in these areas as well.

We can wait until an unthinkable tragedy happens, or we can be proactive in working toward a solution. It's up to us. Or, do you even think this is even a problem addressing? Please share your insights and experiences.

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Comments
  • Bry March 15, 2006 at 11:07 am

    The complaint that I hear from a coworker who lives on the island is bikers riding wolfpack style so that cars can't pass.

    I agree riding single file all times would be best. After all, what got on my nerves the most during the last Bridge Pedal was people riding slowly side-by-side, so those who wanted to go faster and pass had no where to go. This is a similar complaint that I hear from the island.

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  • loli March 15, 2006 at 11:53 am

    I would definitely be interested in helping out in some way on this. Sauvie Island is one of my favorite rides, as is the ride out Hwy. 30. I think its important that we don't forget the west side when thinking about bikes. I commute by bike to Beaverton from downtown Portland and too often when I leave the city's core I feel like there is either misunderstanding or just plain contempt for bikes.

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  • Bill March 15, 2006 at 12:07 pm

    The problem is wholly situated in the second and last words of your first bullet point. I am a cyclist and a member of BTA. I live in Columbia County ... not on the island, but I can see it from here. I ride frequently on rural roads like the one in your photo as well as highway 30. Yesterday I put in 26 cold, wet miles in Warren, Scappoose and surrounding countryside. In the last two years, I have had exactly one unpleasant encounter with a motorist. A car full of drunk teenagers yelled at me. They also yelled at all other traffic so i didn't take it personally. How do I escape the acrimony, attacks and assaults of THEM? It's simple. I live here. This is my backyard and I treat it as such. I make room for other traffic... like the currebtly popular bumper sticker says, I "Share The Road". Sometimes this means slowing down, riding single file, ducking into a driveway for a few seconds so a log truck can get by or stopping (that's what I said, stopping). NONE of these actions have caused me any long term inconvience or pain. Time lost was no more than 30 seconds per occurrence. I am pleasant to folks I meet on the road. I smile and wave. About half of the waves are in return for having been waved at. I treat these folks as neighbors because they are. They are happy to return the favor. People who come out from Portland (or Beaverton etc.) Need to drop the attitude. Accept the fact that a group of forty or so cyclists is not acting as good neighbors when they block all three lanes of highway 30 so that they can ALL run the same red light and arrive at the bridge en masse. What's wrong with regrouping on the other side? Is it really necessary for such a large group to stay together and deny others the use of the road for 1/4 mile?

    Point 2 is an excellent idea if Portlanders don't arrive with the attitudt that the problem lies primarily with the local residents.

    Point 3... a good idea with the new bridge being built, maybe sooner.

    Point 4. I don't know how Multnomah County is fixed for ezxtra Officers but Columbia County only has 7 deputies on duty on the road at any time... That's for the whole county. If Portlanders want more coverage, they should bring money... we don't have any.

    Point 5. A good idea if the message is "Share the Road" not "get out of my way, I have a right to be here". Rules hav to be followed by cyclists too. I will never forget that July day I had to wait (in my car) through SIX green lights to turn left into Fred Meyer in Scappoose as a continuous stream of STP riders ran the red light on Hwy 30 and Havlik. It took a State Trooper on a motorcycle to get THEM to give US our road back.

    Point 6. This is another great idea, if it can be done within the limits of the local tax base. Money also needs to be found for maintenance down the road.

    We can all get along.... it just takes more give and less take when there are too many fish in the bowl. When you meet a cyclist or a car out on the island, treat the operator of the other vehicle as though you expect to meet again at the store, at work, in a restaurant or at church. In a small town environment, it is the assuredness of these future meetings that makes us so friendly. City living has a quality of anonimity that rude behavior somewhat more acceptable.... doesn't work out here.

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  • Alan March 15, 2006 at 12:36 pm

    I completely agree with you: this is a problem that can only get worse, so why not address it now? I can't say which of your recommendations is best. Let's get 'em all on the table.

    I'm an avid City bike rider, but I've never ridden on Sauvie Island. I drive the Island several times every summer and fall, though, to get to farms and beaches. I have never had a serious problem with a biker, but I want to share with you what Sauvie Island looks like from inside a car:

    -really narrow roads. In some places, the lane marker only creates an illusion of two lanes.

    -crazy right-angle turns. You speed up only to slow waaay down, and this goes on and on, and gets you really frustrated.

    -miles and miles of "blind" zones. I can drive the roads much faster than the speed limit says, but if I do, I won't leave myself enough time to adjust to road emergencies because I can't see far enough down the road.

    -no street lights. The roads get dark early.

    -long distances to my destinations. I'm in a hurry to get to the Island, or I'm in a hurry to get home to Portland. Don't get in my way when I'm in a hurry ;-)

    None of this excuses poor driver behavior, but cyclists need to be aware of how risky it is to ride on Sauvie Island in the best of conditions.

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  • Ira Ryan March 15, 2006 at 12:42 pm

    i think it comes down to a issue of repect going both ways. the cyclists need to be aware of their use of the roadway and drivers need to realize that giving a group of cyclists a little extra room and time to pass is worht the lives it could save. by the time you ride out 30 and get to sauvie you are burned out on the heavy truck traffic and all the cars seem to want to continue driving like they are on the hwy. no matter what there are going to be cyclists unwilling to move and motorists who have road rage but on the whole i think educating everyone on sharing the roadway is paramount. i would cast my vote for some share the road type signage and low level educating on and around the island as well as roads like skyline and other popular roadways.

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  • Tomas March 15, 2006 at 12:49 pm

    How about I drive my car around the island at 15mph and see how much road rage I get from other drivers.

    How about just sticking some cardboard signs with "Share the Road" bumper stickers all around the area?

    There was a park I used to ride back in Michigan called "Stoney Creek" that had a paved path that went all around the lake but was usually so full of walkers, joggers and skaters that most serious cyclists would just stick to the road that went around the lake instead. I've ridden it for years without incident and saw no need for a plan of action.

    Why can't "cars" just accept "bikers" as "traffic" and learn to "be patient"?

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  • Austin March 15, 2006 at 1:51 pm

    I personally have been nailed twice on Sauvie Island. Both times, I was riding with a partner single file. And let me tell you, there is nothing quite like being hit in the head by a Big Gulp halfway into a two hour ride. Especially when the car is going 40 MPH and the Big Gulp is full.

    With that said, 99.5% of the cars that go by do so without incident. But I have seen a lot of close calls, honking horns, and drivers intimidating cyclists. Granted, wherever you go, there will always be that "one guy" who is just plain crazy, but what worries me is that the climate out there is hostile towards cyclists.

    Honestly, there are too many cyclists and too little road for it not to be an issue.

    I think that outreach would help, but how do you change behaviors in the long term? How do you tell those drivers that cyclists are allowed to ride two abreast unless impeding traffic (which is in fact the rule according to Multnomah County)?

    I personally think that a sign would help. Both drivers and cyclists have rights AND responsibilities. Unfortunately, those are not clear on the island. I have in the past suggested a "Cyclists No More Than Two Abreast" sign as a way to inform both drivers and cyclists what is legal. It would affirm our right to the road, and would tell everyone what is allowed and not allowed on the island.

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  • Matt P. March 15, 2006 at 2:44 pm

    "How do you tell those drivers that cyclists are allowed to ride two abreast unless impeding traffic (which is in fact the rule according to Multnomah County)?"

    Actually, it is in fact State law, not county. ORS 814.430(2)(e) to be exact.

    http://www.leg.state.or.us/ors/814.html

    -Matt P.
    Oak Grove

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  • dav March 15, 2006 at 2:44 pm

    Are the "official-looking" signs still up, on private property, but close enough to the road to look real, saying, "Bikes Single File?" It's a free country, but those signs are pretty weird...

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  • Jonathan Maus March 15, 2006 at 2:47 pm

    Dav, I've heard about those signs. They were put up by angry locals and were subsequently removed by the County.

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  • erikv March 15, 2006 at 3:02 pm

    I've never had any problems out there. But I do watch for cars and try to stay to the side of the road. WHen I ride with a group, we usually go single file when a car comes by.

    The road is not dedicated for cyclists on the island. The residents need to get around and the tourists need to go visit the farms to buy stuff. So I don't feel like it's our right to take over the road - just use it respectfully.

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  • dav March 15, 2006 at 3:05 pm

    Jonathan,

    I'm glad those signs are gone.

    Years ago, we used to have time trials on Sauvie Island, but conditions became too tense. Early in the year, we would have three Sundays (if I remember correctly), two being individual one-lappers, and then a two-person, two-lapper. This was a traditional early-season ritual for many years. I think the last one was probably the one where I saw a local driver stop, lean out of his car window, grab Peter Thompson's whistle cord (attached to his neck). Those "country-folk" can be intense (he'd probably just seen a Clint Eastwood movie...). It's pathetic to think that on all those open miles of road, one a-hole can ruin it for everyone...my, we are in such a hurry...

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  • paul March 15, 2006 at 3:37 pm

    I've never been hit or had anything tossed at me while riding on Sauvie Island, but I've had many close calls. I was almost tagged three times by a local's side mirror on his white pickup. So close that I could feel the wind coming off of the mirror.

    I agree that when riders are not riding single file, they are creating a problem for others. I agree that when riders are not riding to the right of the lane (and still being safe), they are creating a problem for others. But if you are riding per the law AND pay taxes (fed, state, county, gas), you should be allowed to ride the roads without fear of getting hit/killed/poked/spit on/yelled at.

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  • ron March 15, 2006 at 3:45 pm

    I have ridden many of the roads on the island for many years. Two abrest is no big deal if you have a good line of sight for traffic behind and in front and no cars are approaching. When you come to corners move to single file as sightlines change. It is all about being courteous to others. When you see a car coming move asap to single file and stay until it is clear. Give a positive wave when they go by. Common sense says do this to help with safety and social interaction of all users. The number of miles available for riding on the island has been reduced from years past because of closures in some of the wildlife areas. As an off road rider (as well as road) I am not so pleased with this, but it is a done deal. There used to be some great single track available out there... gone now. With what I have said above I want to add that to my knowledge I have NEVER had a problem with any of the locals when riding out there. The problems I have had have been with the "party people" that were heading for or leaving the beach areas. They were probably drunk in most instances. Two significant events graced my inclusion. One was a poorly aimed beer bottle zipping past my head and the other was a person leaning out of a car that was overtaking me (as I hugged the fog line)with a person leaning out hitting me on the butt ( did not expect this). Needless to say the car was close to me, I did swerve but avoided a move left into the car as it sped off. Well. What I do now is hardly ever ride out there, especially when the weather is hot and more folks are heading out to party and swim. If I go there it is cooler or wetter. I do not think the locals dislike cyclists that do ride with a degree of common sense. I also grew up in an agricultural area and I always give way to the folks working the land. I know the nursery business is big out there, but there are still farmers and if you had ever participated in bringing in the hay or other duties on the farm or ranch... you would know riding a bike is really a nice day out... even if you are riding at race speed. The biggest problem for cyclists on any road (other than demented and or drugged auto drivers) is the fact that people driving cars, are in an environment that is so detached from the outside world (temperature, smell, sound etc.) that they tend to look at almost everything that is not just smooth pavement as an interruption to their life. The auto tends to just make this be the normal mode of operation for most drivers. Thus to them, bike riders are a bother. Not all drivers exhibit this behavior thank goodness and not all bike riders ride in large groups that block the roadways. It is best if we each look at the other on the individual basis if possible. Even then there will be conflicts.

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  • Bill March 15, 2006 at 5:35 pm

    While I was at the gym this afternoon, I gave this issue a lot of thought and have a few things to add to my original response. I don't ride there for two reasons. There is no need for me to go there because a similar riding environment starts at my mailbox. The negative reports of bikes being hassled on the island has not made me want to join in the fun. Although I have not had any real serious conflicts with drivers on "my" side of the channel, I don't doubt that it happens over on the island. What I was thinking about this afternoon has been discussed by ron. That is: are these problem drivers actually island residents or are they visitors who don't care what kind of impression they leave behind? Jonathon's original article seems aimed at the islanders...... "I think many Island residents just plain don’t like city folk (after all they moved there to escape us)"..... and:.... "Create a new rider task force to meet with Island residents, the local grange and fire department.".....

    There have been responses here about assaults of cyclists on the Island by Paul and Austin. Do you folks know if your attackers were island residents or not?

    I think having a task force to meet with the locals is a great idea in any event. It can only help to bring some understanding to what has become a dangerous situation. What concerns me is that we cyclists might not be talking to the group that needs to hear from us. Maybe we need to find a way to reach out to the people who go out to Sauvie Island to swim, fish, hunt, bird watch, take photographs, walk on the beach, buy vegetables, pick pumpkins and get drunk.

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  • nancy March 15, 2006 at 9:30 pm

    I have only been riding on Sauvie Island once because it was such a BAD experience. We were run off the road by a police officer who subsequently stopped and yelled at us for simply being there. Later in the same ride we were run off the road by an angry motorist. We were fully obeying all of the laws including riding single file during these incidents.
    Therefore I disagree with the suggestion of adding police officers. Unfortunately they can add to the problem. The money would be much better spent with signs and community outreach.

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  • anon March 16, 2006 at 8:42 am

    I carry a Glock 9mm when I ride there.

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  • mr.macadam March 16, 2006 at 9:29 am

    two words:

    "CAR BACK!"

    It works.

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  • D March 16, 2006 at 10:03 am

    Wow. I had no idea there was a problem at Sauvie Island. I've been training there up to 3 days a week for 4 years, and have never had a bad experience due to cars or locals. Granted, some autos pass close and quick, but that happens on every road. I don't think Sauie Island deserves any special attention unless it's due to the perfect training grounds.

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  • Alan March 16, 2006 at 1:10 pm

    I'm not going to apologize for nasty drivers, but I want to emphasize what I said before, "it's a tough place to DRIVE, and not just a tough place to ride". Take a look at Jonathan's photo. There's no shoulder whatsover. Yes, riders have to enter "car territory" to go anywhere, but drivers have a lot of challenges to face too.

    It's typical of what I read here (and what I see on the road), cyclists often forget (willfully ignore) the problems they cause.

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  • patrick March 16, 2006 at 1:28 pm

    I've logged tons of miles out at Sauvie with no problems.

    Wanted to let people in on a recent conversation I had with Don Kruger of Kruger Farms. Don is a great guy and supports cyclists. He told me to spread the word that cyclist coming to the island are welcome to park at his farm when starting their ride. Obviously in the summer the draw will be his Farmers Market. He even said cyclist are welcome to use the bathrooms.

    http://www.krugersfarmmarket.com

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  • Chris March 17, 2006 at 9:14 am

    I can attest that there is cyclist-friendly territory on Sauvie. Back in 2002, I was hit from behind on Sauvie by a car full of speeding teenagers w/o a license or registration. I was riding the stripe at the time. It just so happened that the incident occurred right in front of the Burger's house. Talk about good people... Steven and Michelle invited me in to use their bathroom to wash up my road rashed backside and to make a phone call. Not only were they so generous as to invite me into their home, they lent me some shorts, offered me dinner while we watched that day's stage of the Tour de France on TV, and when I couldn't get ahold of anyone to pick me up, they drove me home! I am forever grateful for their kindness!

    It always bugged me to see people taking up so much of the lanes during group rides out there. Single file when traffic is present is not an unreasonable thing to ask for.

    Chris B.
    Eugene, OR

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  • Ethan March 17, 2006 at 10:20 am

    The vast majority of my rides on the island over the years have been incident-free. That said, I did have two back-to-back incidents a few years ago with the same red Chevy sedan. The driver would pass at upwards of 50mph, getting so close that your whole life flashed before you. It was not an accident or careless driving, it was malice.

    Some of the other posts here lead me to believe that this may be standard practice for a few locals who are out to "teach bicyclists a lesson". Single file didn't make a difference in my case. Regardless of what the cyclists are doing or not doing, you do not throw glass bottles at any other human being from a speeding vehicle.

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  • LANNY GOWER March 17, 2006 at 3:08 pm

    I don't understand the comment about the "triathletes" creating a problem at the island?

    I ride the island probably close to 100 times per year for the last 15 years... sometimes with a group of riders... sometimes "time trial training" and I can't imagine how my time trial training is considered a problem?

    I'm always single file.. easy to get around... I'm no wider when riding on the white line on my time trial bike than I am riding a traditional road bike.

    I agree there are problems at the island but singling out triathletes I doubt will do much to help address the real issues (motorists who don't use common sense and any cyclist who doesn't use common sense).

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  • Jonathan Maus March 17, 2006 at 3:18 pm

    Lanny, you're absolutely right. I shouldn't have singled out triathletes. I was speaking from my own personal observations of riders that could stand to be more aware of their surroundings when they ride.

    As a former competitive triathlete, time trialist, and road racer myself I know first-hand how engrossed I could get with my workouts.

    This could be any type of rider, I just happened to single out triathletes.

    I apologize for the generalization and I hope that my intended thought still came across.

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  • LANNY GOWER March 17, 2006 at 3:39 pm

    Jonathan...

    No problem. I'll be the first to admit I've done stupid things at the island when I wasn't paying attention. It's just they are not done because I happen to be on a tri bike... I'm just sometimes a dork :)

    But in General... I'd have to say I've had no more problems at the island than any other rural area where roads are narrow. I'd echo the thought that I think you would find most problem motorists are probably not island residents but visitors.

    Money is scarce... I think you will find no willingness to adress the problem with something like wider lanes. I think educating riders and drivers better is what you will be limited to working with.

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  • Jonathan Maus March 17, 2006 at 4:10 pm

    Lanny said: "I’d have to say I’ve had no more problems at the island than any other rural area where roads are narrow.

    I agree. In hindsight I should have focused this post on the general problem of riding in rural areas, instead of just Sauvie. The valley is full of dangerous roads, and so are Eastern outskirts like Boring, Sandy, Corbett, etc...

    I would love to see some sort of draft plan for what to do about these areas...a task force possibly. Meetings, partnerships, etc...

    And on that note, thanks everyone for your energy and input around this post. I am working on a possible group ride/event out to Sauvie to meet and greet a group of residents. Stay tuned on that and get in touch with me if you want to help.

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  • Eddie March 23, 2006 at 12:08 am

    I always ride on or very near the white line or to the right of it if possible. You have to pay attention to keep from running off the pavement, but it's just common sense for safety reasons to stay as far from the passing cars as possible on any road. I do not alwasys obey stop signs or lights unless it is safer to do so. Sometimes it's best to go on red and avoid the rush that occurs on green. But I ALWAYS stay as far from cars as I can. Every car that approaches you from behind is only a few feet or a few inches from killing you so give them all the room the road allows.

    It is sad to see a road getting new pavement only to the white line and not an inch more, but in our third world nation with record budget deficits and record tax cuts for wealthy people, that's the way it is today.

    A law should be passed requiring a minimum of 6" of pavement past the white line when a road is being paved or repaved if the roadbed will support it. 12" would be better. That would almost get your whole bike out of the road. Most roadbeds, but not all, could take 6 more inches without widening, I'd think.

    The freeway, say I-84 in the gorge, has a good 6 or 8 foot wide shoulder in most places. It seems to be safer than most rural 2 lane roads but I must admit it sucks having cars and big trucks whizzing by at 70 or 80 mph constantly. Also, I discovered there is a lot of steel wire debris there from worn out steel belted tires and that stuff can cause flats so some heavy tubes and Mr. Tuffy strips can help your tires. Also, when you come to an exit onramp or offramp you have to be careful and not get in front of a car, so look and cross when it's safe. I'm not sure what the chances of being hit by hubcaps, load straps, and that type thing would be but at the freeway speeds it could hurt.

    Automobile drivers are very aggressive now days. You cannot go anywhere without pissing off someone who wants you out of the way no matter how fast you drive. I noticed a distinct worsening of this immediately after the Republicans raised the national speed limit laws around 10 or so years ago. The highways and roads are now a free for all. I used to drive to work from Pleasanton to Livermore, California. I'd get on the freeway, get in the left lane and push it up to 100 mph. Every time there would be cars on my butt!

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  • [...] I have posted about this in the past and I think we’ll continue to have more tragedy on rural roads and highways in the future if nothing changes. [...]

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  • [...] Some of you might remember that back in March I posted about the dangers of riding on rural roads. I called it “The Sauvie Island Problem” and said that if we don’t do something we are in for a very sad summer. [...]

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  • Tree June 23, 2006 at 11:56 pm

    The fact that Sauvie Island and Hwy 30 are considered great for cycling illustrates just how pathetic the Portland area is for recreational riding. Sauvie Island - narrow, too many cars and the scent of pesticides. I rode it once after moving here in 1996. Aside from the blackberries (which were new to me) the road and pleasure aspect SUCKED. Hwy 30? Industrial wasteland, boring and depressing. I quit recreational riding for the most part. I did ride and camp in Hells Canyon/Eastern Oregon for a week and rode Forest Park sometimes. Portland (downtown and the east side) is great for bike commuting, which I do every work day 365, but for long distance fast riding without constantly looking over your shoulder, forget it. It's a fact of life, this isn't a safe place to bike recreate.

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  • [...] You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site. Possibly related posts Sauvie Island Bridge not coming to NWSauvie IslandBridge idea not dead yetSauvie Island Bridge coming to NW Portland?Solving the Sauvie Island problemA rural road claims another victim [...]

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  • Bill July 16, 2007 at 2:19 pm

    I just rode there this weekend, and I knew that with the weather nice I could expect lots of traffic. I was, however, saddened by how unsafe the whole experience was. My wife and I rode single file the entire time and stayed to the right - on the shoulder when possible. There were far too many cars that passed too close - several not moving over at all to pass safely. There were many motorists passing us in the oncoming lane on blind curves and hills, with no way of seeing traffic if it were to appear in front of them (faith-based driving). Overall, there were too many cars driving too damn fast - what is the big hurry? They are on Sauvie Island, do they have to hurry up and get to the beach before their sunscreen wears off?

    As much as decent, caring people might try to see both sides of any problem, there simply isn\'t any way to claim that bikers can improve the situation by being more courteous. Granted, everyone could stand to be courteous, and life would be better; but in this case, the motorists hold all the cards. Further, we are talking about a balance between a minor inconvenience for a motorist and nothing less than the life of the biker. What I am saying is that the motorists must drive better to avoid these incidents.

    I agree with the poster above who said that its a difficult place to drive (with the narrow lanes and blind curves and whatnot), but sensible people would realize that means one should drive slower. I\'ve driven on Sauvie Island too, and its really not bad to take the roads at 35 or 45 mph (posted speeds). And when there was a bicyclist, I waited until it was safe to pass, and passed giving plenty of room. I must say that around 70% of drivers were safe and considerate, but the other folks made things much less enjoyable for me.

    All that doesn\'t matter much, because despite any effort to assign blame for the problem, the only solution is more room for drivers and bikers. To avoid future casualties the roads must be wider and designed with bikes in mind. I don\'t know from where the money might come. I did notice that the Columbia County portion of Reeder Rd. was ridiculous. The stripe was the edge of the pavement - no shoulder - and the lanes were narrow in each direction.

    I don\'t think I\'ll ride there any more.

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