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New speed bumps on popular cemetery route: Necessarily dangerous?

Posted by on September 23rd, 2009 at 3:37 pm

Katelyn Hale learned about the
new speed bumps the hard way.
(Photo courtesy K. Hale)

David Noble, executive director of the non-profit Riverview Cemetery, didn’t want to do it, but he felt he had no other choice.

About one week ago, Noble instructed his groundskeepers to install three sets of speed bumps on the property. The reason? He says people on bicycles have been riding too fast and without consideration for cemetery visitors. The bumps were a last-ditch effort to prevent a serious collision and to ingrain into people on bikes that they need to slow down.

And it’s far from a new problem. Back in April of 2006 we reported that — after a near miss between a man on a bike and one of the cemetery’s maintenance workers — Noble considered banning bikes from the ground completely.

But for many people who ride through the cemetery (it’s private land, but the roads are open to bicycle traffic to avoid the nasty conditions on adjacent Taylor’s Ferry Road), the new bumps are more than just a speed deterrent, they’re downright dangerous.

Sunglasses shown for size context.

We began getting emails about the new speed bumps almost the same day they were installed. According to sources, when they first went in, they were not painted yellow and had no warning stripes leading up to them. Riders complained that they were “unfriendly”, very sharp bumps and that they appeared without any warning.

Katelyn Hale learned about the new speed bumps the hard way.

Story continues below

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Hale has been biking through Riverview Cemetery for the past three years as a student and now staff member at Lewis & Clark College (located on the hill above the grounds). She knows the roads well and has never had a problem — until last Thursday. She wrote us via email about her experience:

“I was surprised when there was this huge speedlump just within the lower gates! It was unpainted and gave me a jolt; I didn’t see it, nor was I expecting to see it. Thursday evening, coming home after dark, I almost broke a spoke when I ran into another one — I saw it in my headlight, but I didn’t have time to slow down enough to go over it safely.”

By Friday, reported Hale, crews had painted the bumps yellow and put down small stripes leading up to the bump. Then on Monday, she took a different route and crashed into a third speed bump she didn’t even see.

This time, Hale was thrown from her bike and sustained major road rash and a cracked helmet. After the fall, passersby told her that they’d seen another woman crash on the bumps and brake her collarbone that same morning.

“We take our duty to the community very seriously, but there’s a point when it gets too out of hand and you have to do something.”
— David Noble, Executive Director of Riverview Cemetery

Hale says she’s grateful that the cemetery remains open to bike traffic as an alternative to the “gnarly” Taylor’s Ferry Road, but she thinks the bumps are so “narrow and squarish that you’d have to slow down to 2 mph to go over them safely”. Given that, Hale feels the bumps are “very obviously targeted toward bicyclists”.

David Noble says that’s exactly the case.

Noble authorized construction of the speed bumps, and, during a phone interview yesterday, said that they were “carefully discussed and thought out.” When I asked why he installed them, he said it was in response to an alarming upward increase in the amount of rude and dangerous bike riding.

“Frankly, we don’t like them [the speed bumps], our maintenance people don’t like them… but it was like, if we don’t do something to slow these people down, someone’s going to get killed.”

Noble, a frequent bike rider himself, said he’s keenly aware of how important this safe bike route is for many people, but he seemed like a man at wit’s end who simply felt his hand was forced into taking this step.

“In any case, putting in dangerous and poorly-marked speedbumps is not the best way to go about improving the situation.”
— Katelyn Hale, rides her bike through the cemetery

It was hard to listen as Noble detailed many of the complaints and incidents of rude bike riding he’s heard about: people speeding right through a funeral procession; flying by (and flipping of and cursing at) an old woman on her way to lay flowers on a grave; and the worst thing — a common shortcut taken through a hedge near the top of the property, which happens to go right over the top of baby gravesites.

Noble says he suspects it’s the classic situation where a small minority of riders are causing most of the problems. “Most people that come through are courteous and respectful, they understand it’s a privilege — not a right — to come through our property, but I have negative encounters almost daily… I wish it was an isolated incident.”

The area Noble worries most about is near the main parking lot. “Bikes don’t make much noise and they’re harder to see than cars… and someone who is grief-stricken might not be paying as much attention to the road.”

Noble says if he had a larger budget, he’d like to add bike lanes and a bit of signage to guide bike riders through the property. He’d also be interested in organizing a summit with local bike advocates. “Maybe we can come up with some ways to solve this.”

Katelyn Hale, the young woman whose fresh scabs serve as a reminder of the bumps, says she’s equally appalled at some riders’ rude behavior, but she just wants more of an open dialogue between cemetery staff and people who ride through it. “In any case, putting in dangerous and poorly-marked speedbumps is not the best way to go about improving the situation.”

Red squares mark location of bumps.
(Graphic: Matthew West)

When I shared concerns about the design of the bumps from people who had crashed, Noble said he’d be willing to address them and that as a bicyclist himself, “could appreciate that complaint.” On the other hand, he added, “If they’re too smoothed out, it doesn’t slow anyone down.”

Noble is aware of at least two of the crashes, both of which he said the people involved have admitted they were going too fast.

The bumps have been installed in three places; in the middle of the property, directly above the road that goes by the maintenance shop, right above the main parking lot by the cemetery offices and mausoleum, and at the bottom of the grounds near the entrance and Highway 43.

Riverview is a non-profit, and Noble points out that a more typical, corporate cemetery would have already banned bicycling altogether.

“We take our duty to the community very seriously, but there’s a point when it gets too out of hand and you have to do something. As much as we’d hate to do it, if these bumps don’t solve the problem, people will find themselves out on the street. That’s not a threat, it’s a reality. Our hands would be forced.”


Do you ride through Riverview Cemetery? If so, what do you think of the speed bumps and this issue in general?

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196 Comments
  • jeff September 23, 2009 at 3:44 pm

    bunny hop

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  • Nick V September 23, 2009 at 3:46 pm

    Several years ago I rode through Riverview after climbing Terwiliger in the rain. The pavement was slick and, admittedly, no one was around so I was going pretty fast. My bike skidded out from underneath me on a tight turn and I landed flat on my back. Lesson learned that day, but yeah those speed bumps look unnecessarily large.

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  • Nick V September 23, 2009 at 3:52 pm

    I should add that the rudeness of the cyclists that Noble describes should not be tolerated, especially at a cemetery.

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  • Bahueh September 23, 2009 at 3:54 pm

    I saw and rode over those a couple days ago…guess what? I slowed down.

    many cyclists have shown over and over again they cannot ride at a reasonable speed when necessary and with a general concern for others…I don’t blame Noble at all. didn’t some other woman fly off into the trees a few years back and lay there waiting for help in the dark for some time before it arrived? That, along with Nick’s story above..and guess what happens?

    Self-policing the “cycling community” doesn’t work…so you get stuff like this.

    BTW, how does one “almost break a spoke”?

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  • amos September 23, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    If the bumps are necessary that I think some signs a few hundred feet down the road warning of them are just as important.

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  • JV September 23, 2009 at 4:03 pm

    I believe very strongly in protecting the rights and safety of cyclists, but I am right on Mr. Noble’s side. It is his property. *Anyone* visiting it should keep that in mind. Moreover, the fact that this is a serene cemetery is context that cannot be overlooked. We should all be purveyors of cycling diplomacy for at least as long as it takes to traverse those grounds, if not always.

    Flipping off mourners? That’s world-class d-bag behavior that ruins it for all. The owner is well within his rights; it’s awfully nice of him to even discuss a possible alternative.

    I am very sorry that folks have crashed. That’s a lose-lose.

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  • Tom September 23, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    This is an issue that has gone on for many years. Too fast on the descent leads to crashes. I now just go slow down through the cemetery or use Taylor’s Ferry. The climb though is always slow for me, and a real pleasure. Thank you to Riverview for continuing to allow bicycles on your property.

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  • Aaron September 23, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    I understand Noble’s frustration. He has been very understanding and open about continuing to allow cyclists through the property given that there are no reasonable alternatives. This is very much a case of a few bad apples spoiling everyone’s fun. I’m very sad that Kate had to find out about this the hard way. There should be a better dialogue, and maybe city money contributed (since the city is creating the situation where there are no reasonable alternatives).
    Thanks for such balanced reporting Jonathan. This is a very respectfully written article.

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  • Shane September 23, 2009 at 4:11 pm

    I’m a huge cyclist – so I say this with a lot of pause… I don’t, and never have, and probably never will – ride through the cemetery.

    But it sounds like that inevitable 10% of the shitballs out there are the cause of this. Unfortunately, Mr. Noble was clearly right to take steps. However, his steps may have been done hastily, and without proper forethought and consideration for the consequences (a few days of unpainted, suddenly sprouted speed bumps …).

    I live on Skyline Blvd. Let me mention again – I’m a *huge* cyclist myself. …and I have developed a negative association with cyclists. That 10% – the rude, loud, obnoxious ones; the ones that stop and piss on my hedges, worse, the ones that shit behind my mailbox – they really irk me and yet, I know, in my heart – I’m a cyclist too.

    It’s an unfortunate and sad state that we find our world in – with that 10% driving all of the laws, rules, restrictions, and lawyers.

    You can and should never be complacent on a bicycle. Especially if you’re prone to riding fast. You should always expect a pot hole, a pedestrian, a dog, or an unexpected speed bump. Ride accordingly.

    I’m sorry people have crashed on those speed bumps – but they (almost) clearly were not riding within their ability to control their bikes, within the confines of their lighting systems, or within the confines of the terrain or obstacles that might be presented to them.

    Ride safely, don’t shit on my mailbox, and don’t piss on my hedges! I’ll see you all out there on the road.

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  • Jerry September 23, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    It was a few years ago, but I was bombing down that hill toward the cemetery workers garage and when I came around that blind corner one of the workers was driving up the hill in a little ATV. I almost smacked the front side of that thing going pretty fast. Since that day I have always taken it easy through there. Not just that section but the whole way down.

    The way I look at it, now, is that is their work space. Having folks ride their bikes at a high rate of speed through their work space is kinda rude. They’re nice enough to let us ride through there… the least we can do is say thanks by riding through sensibly.

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  • q`Tzal September 23, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    It’s Great that David Noble and Riverview Cemetery is keeping this route open to cyclists. They are well within their rights to close it and their insurer is likely screaming for them to ban through cycling.

    Needed warning sign at top of cemetery:
    “Cyclists: Speed bumps ahead”

    also
    “WARNING Cyclists: greiving cemetery patrons likely won’t see you. SLOW DOWN!”

    Perhaps a funny/serious sign “Cyclists: slow down to leave safely or speed up to stay forever.”

    “Slow down or die” sounds too much like a threat.

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  • Brian September 23, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    Bravo Mr Noble.

    If you are not in control of your vehicle you are gonna crash.

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  • thefuture September 23, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    I ride (usually up) through the cemetary fairly often using it to connect from the sellwood bridge to eventually council crest. I am often surprised that bikes are allowed there and its one of the best parts of the ride since its car free, quiet, and a really pretty place.

    We gotta do whatever we can to respect his property, those who come to it, and who maintain it or we’ll be (rightfully so) not allowed to use it. If speed bumps help so be it.

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  • joebob September 23, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    I see people riding through the grass at the top of the cemetery all the time. In fact, it appears to be rare that cyclists walk their bikes once the gate is closed. I always carry mine so that no harm will be done to the grass. Unfortunately, I think that the issue of not respecting the property goes beyond more than just a few bad apples. I think the property owner has been very generous thus far.

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  • thefuture September 23, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    on the same pole as the signs he should add a donation box for appreciative cyclists

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  • Nick V September 23, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    #11 is spot on. Great idea.

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  • Paul S September 23, 2009 at 4:27 pm

    I want to echo other sentiments here: it’s sad that we’ve reached this point. I appreciate the opportunity to cut long around Taylor’s Fy, which is a nightmare to ride on.

    I use this route a couple of times a week, always at times when I need more chill than thrill. So when I encountered the (unpainted, unmarked) bumps last week they were merely jarring, not dangerous. I’m surprised there weren’t more spills before they were painted.

    FWIW I get buzzed by plenty of motorized yahoos in the cemetery

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  • Porteur September 23, 2009 at 4:28 pm

    Signs would be nice – probably for cars as well. That being said, I agree with all that was stated above. We are visitors in the cemetary and should show some respect to the property, the staff and the other visitors.

    “”Cyclists: slow down to leave safely or speed up to stay forever.”” – Classic. Made me chuckle!

    Question – if the gate is closed at the top, is there an alternate way out that doesn’t require riding over grave sites?

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  • Gabriel September 23, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    I ride through the riverview most workdays then take Taylors Fairy on the way home when I can keep up with the 40mph traffic.

    Taylors Fairy has no shoulders (let alone bike lanes). The few times that I have taken it uphill, I was severly harassed by the rush-hour cars. So, the riverview is really the only option and I am glad to see that it will remain open to cyclists.

    That said, these are some really viscous speed bumps. I am not surprised that they have caused injury.

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  • Cranky McSlik September 23, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    First, I wholly support Mr. Noble and am saddened that my fellow cyclists abuse a sacred site such as this for personal gain.Second, this is a non-issue because it’s PRIVATE PROPERTY! Doe’s that mean anything anymore you entitled little shits?This non-profit owes you exactly half of squat. How dare you complain that you’re being inconvenienced by having to slow down IN A CEMETARY!! My god, how selfish have cyclists become that they could question the difficult decision Mr. Noble had to make to preserve the safety of his PAYING customers? A CEMETARY!!!WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU???? Slow the FUCK down stupid.

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  • cyclist September 23, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    I want to highlight something Katelyn said:

    “I saw it in my headlight, but I didn’t have time to slow down enough to go over it safely.”

    If you see something in your headlight but don’t have enough time to slow down before you hit it, that means you’re going too fast. It’s a lesson I learned the hard way a long time ago, of course when I learned that lesson I blamed myself for biking out of control. Perhaps after some self-reflection Katelyn will take some ownership for her almost broken spoke.

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  • Mama September 23, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    I, too, spoke with Riverview staff. They were respectful and courteous, but as business and private property owners, deeply concerned about their liabiility. The sign ideas are great; should have been done prior to the installation of said “curbs”. Those pictures of the injuries tell it all. Sorry you hurt yourself, honey.

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  • joebob September 23, 2009 at 4:41 pm

    If the gate at the top is locked, you can carry your bike appx 20 yards across the grass to exit the property. You certainly do not need to ride over grave stones. Yes, people really do ride over the grave stones. WTF people?

    This does raise the question as to whether or not the property owner is ok with bicyclists walking across the grass.

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  • Oliver September 23, 2009 at 4:41 pm

    I agree, nice to see that even though behavior of a few cro-mags has created an intolerable situation, options have been explored other than closure.

    But cursing and gesturing at mourners? Who? When? I find that hard to believe. (& kids don’t count)

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  • Machu Picchu September 23, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    On public property, these poorly-engineered bumps would be a liability leading to lawsuits and the re-engineering of the bumps.

    On private property, they are a liability that will eventually lead to a lawsuit, which will lead to the banning of bicycles on that private property. Someone needs to go a step farther to make sure there is adequate warning and (ideally) a better bump, or this will be the beginning of the end of bikes in Riverview.

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  • Oh Y Not September 23, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    Uh, yo, Cranky…I think the point of the article is to educate fellow cyclists to slow down and be careful. You are hilarious…

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  • nuovorecord September 23, 2009 at 4:46 pm

    Thanks for letting us use your cemetery, Mr. Noble. The privilege is much appreciated (by 99% of us, anyway.)

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  • Velocentric September 23, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    If that’s their mind set why didn’t they just string wire across the path…oh too obvious I suppose.

    If cyclists were that bad, just ban them from the property, don’t try to kill them!

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  • D. Ranew September 23, 2009 at 4:53 pm

    I use this route occasionally. It’s always peaceful and without traffic. Rude cyclists are an embarrassment. A few speedbumps is okay with me.

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  • f5 September 23, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    I think in general, most cyclists aren’t going to have a problem with them. Descending those roads requires all your focus — buckeyes, sprinkler puddles, potholes, etc. It’s really unfortunate Katelyn was hurt, also just as unfortunate that she apparently wasn’t able to really change her riding behavior after the first two incidences in order to avoid the third.

    It is private property and I for one am grateful they let us use it. I hope they aren’t put off by the focus being put on the victimization of those injured.

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  • erica September 23, 2009 at 5:03 pm

    I’m with f5. Between the tree debris and the other cyclists, it’s a pretty nerve-wracking, albeit beautiful, ride. This hill is an integral part of my daily commute, and I’ll make whatever compromise needed to keep the route open. Use of the cemetery is NOT a privilege, as much as we’d like it to be.

    The temptation to bomb this hill is great, and everyone has a different definition of riding responsibly. Still, let’s don’t gun down widows or ride over graves.

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  • sam September 23, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    People are riding through funeral processions and over baby graves? There’s not a speed bump big and square enough for those people.

    I don’t care if you’re riding, walking, driving or crawling, you stop and wait quietly when a funeral procession passes. Until it’s past. And when you’re the one sitting in the black car leading the procession, you’ll notice that and it will matter. What is wrong with people?

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  • andrew September 23, 2009 at 5:05 pm

    Crashing because you rode over speed bumps means you need to practice riding a bike more. Pretty plain and simple.

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  • Bahueh September 23, 2009 at 5:09 pm

    I’m actually hoping Noble puts in a few more…

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  • Allan September 23, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    @21: some headlights are pretty weak, merely for being seen not for seeing

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  • Nick V September 23, 2009 at 5:24 pm

    Regarding signage, if speed bumps are mentioned on the sign, cyclists will just speed up again once they’ve passed the bumps. Signs simply warning them to slow down should do the trick.

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  • Dave S September 23, 2009 at 5:42 pm

    I ride the cemetery almost every day. While the speed bumps are an inconvenience, it is hard to blame Mr. Noble for putting them in, given the actions of the few. The other issue is the exit/entrance at the top. Lately the gate has been open later into the day, so no one takes the shortcuts. It would be nice to have that continue, but we have no right, really, to have a say in this matter. The donation box is a great idea. Cyclists are lucky to have this route and being barred from the route would be a great loss.

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  • steve September 23, 2009 at 5:45 pm

    Allan #35,

    Yes, they are. As such, they are insufficient and unsafe for riding in low ambient light conditions. Falling because of too dim a light would still make falling the riders fault.

    Did you have a point?

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  • Dixon September 23, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    Sorry for those injured. A warning sign would have been nice but I support what Mr Noble felt he had to do. We should all be thankful the access to his property still exists.

    If you have a moment head over to the site and email him with your appreciation and support. Hopefully he has found there is an outlet for concerns on this site before he feels other actions have to be taken.

    Thanks Jonathon.

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  • q`Tzal September 23, 2009 at 6:07 pm

    Nick V #36:
    People will accelerate after a speed bump whether they have advanced warning or not. Car or bike.
    The purpose of any road sign is Fore knowledge. That way users that go through this route know in advance that a hazard exists.
    Speed bumps only slow our speed if we know they exist BEFORE we get to the speed bump; if speed of users is too great between them them more need to be added.
    All that being said, the only thing I would have changed about what David Noble did was to have put up a public notice about a month or two in advance, when there was still internal debate about how to handle the situation, stating that without more polite and circumspect behavior from cyclists that options were being considered to mitigate hazards caused by said cyclists. Then show that closing the route and speed bumps were both options up for consideration.
    David Noble does not want to close this route to cyclists and we can only hope he is able to maintain that option. With our help.

    Porteur #18
    I’ve always been partial to the Burma-Shave style of subliminal advertisement. These newer knock offs put too much on each sign. 2 or 3 words per sign and the message crawls right in to your subconcious.
    If only I could come up with a message that was funny but respecful of the setting all the while giving the viewer the unshakeable fear that someone is about to walk from some blind angle directly in front of me.

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  • dave September 23, 2009 at 6:40 pm

    I hate to say it, but I agree with several previous commenters here – namely, if you hurt yourself *that* badly going over a speedbump, then, you know, you’re probably cycling a bit too fast.

    That said, some advance signage of the speedbumps wouldn’t go amiss. It’s what they do on city streets when speedbumps are present.

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  • common sense September 23, 2009 at 7:40 pm

    Please, please, please people!!! I think that those of you suggesting signs of warning are missing the point. This is a cemetery, a private property, non-profit cemetery at that, and they do not exist merely to serve the biking community – period. The speed bumps were obviously a last-ditch attempt to have some control over a seemingly losing battle with the biking community. Ride with some common sense and courtesy realizing that this is a CEMETERY – sacred burial grounds, and a place for people to mourn and to reflect, not dodge bicyclists or put up with unconscionable behavior!

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  • sing it sister! September 23, 2009 at 8:04 pm

    Those speedbumps are pretty hefty; have any of you even rolled over one yet?! I feel like they’re as if they’re a speeding ticket for a previously unannounced speed limit.
    I know two others who have crashed from them; one of which broke her collarbone and the other flew into a trash can (comical, but ouch)!
    As it’s damn straight that it’s a privilege to roll down that beautiful cemetery, a crucial fact is that the people who are crashing *didn’t know* about the bumps beforehand. I’m sure if one knew that there was a killer bump on the way down, they’d slow down for sure!

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  • BigMarty September 23, 2009 at 8:09 pm

    This is going to sound crass but how many speed bumps will it take Ms. Hale to learn her lesson? The first speed bump she got a jolt from, because she didn’t see it. The second one she almost broke a spoke on, because she couldn’t slow down in time. The third one she wrecked on? These all happened at different times, so she had plenty of time to reflect on the idea that MAYBE SHE SHOULD SLOW THE HECK DOWN!

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  • John Eric Lutz September 23, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    I have been riding down the cemetery at about 6:15 am for several years now. I hit the speed bump just above the maintenance building the morning after it was installed. I never saw it and almost crashed at about 20+ mph. It was unmarked and unpainted. I told the cemetery folks THEY were lucky I did not crash and burn. As a surgeon I need both hands and arms to make a living. If I had fractured anything I would have sued-BIG TIME. Putting those things in without proper warning was flat out rude and dangerous as well as negligent!
    John

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  • Nat September 23, 2009 at 8:35 pm

    Just want to add my thanks to the cemetery for allowing cyclists to ride through. I’ve absolutely enjoyed every trip through to get up over the hill and without adding miles there’s no safe alternative for many trips.

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  • Joe September 23, 2009 at 8:35 pm

    I think I saw the guy that cursed at mourners, the other day when riding on woodstock. A bus was stopped ahead, so he road up on the sidewalk and almost smacked into someone exiting the bus. Some people are beyond clueless.

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  • Seager September 23, 2009 at 8:47 pm

    You guys are missing the point. She hit them and almost wrecked because they were new and unpainted. If someone put a new hazard on a route I’d been biking for three years there is a good chance I’d be taken out by it too.

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  • ben September 23, 2009 at 8:48 pm

    I think cyclists should have a calming party to warn cyclist, abuse and loose it.

    If I was the property owner I would ban cycling in the cemetery. The ban would go into effect for 6 mo. Everyone then can ride on the road. Then in six months if things don’t change ban them for a year.

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  • felix September 23, 2009 at 9:09 pm

    do it better

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  • Kevin Hedahl September 23, 2009 at 9:22 pm

    I’ve talked to David before about bikes in the cemetery. He is a wonderful, genuine person who has done a wonderful job running the non-profit. He is very understanding about bikes riding through the cemetery and has spent a lot of time and effort talking with bicyclists. I fully support him putting in the speed bumps and am glad that he is still allowing us to commute through the property.

    I’m glad that David has chosen to paint the speed bumps. However, just a reminder to cyclists and motorists, don’t outrun your lights. If you are riding so fast that you don’t have time to react to something popping up in your lights, slow down. Most bike lights aren’t meant to ride in the dark, they are meant to make you visible to approaching cars. If you are using one of these, slow down.

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  • drew September 23, 2009 at 9:26 pm

    Mr Noble is offering an alternative to the blood alley that is Taylors Ferry.
    He takes up the slack from the complete failure of ODOT or whatever public authority to design a safe street.

    I could crash by running over a squirrel if I was not paying attention or going too fast. Cemetery personnel are not training the squirrels how to behave. I have no sympathy for the injured in this case.

    The many cyclists who ride over the gravestones probably drive as well. And they would drive their car over them if it would save them time and they thought they could get away with it. There is a very hot area in hell waiting for them. The speed bumps will provide an added benefit of slowing down some of the inconsiderate motorists too.

    Thanks Mr Noble for continuing to allow bikes thru the property!

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  • transplant September 23, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    I just signed the River View guestbook thanking them for keeping the cemetery open to cyclists and letting them know I don’t mind the speed bumps at all. I’d like to help rebuild our reputation, if that’s possible.
    http://riverviewcemetery.org/index2.html

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  • Marcus September 23, 2009 at 9:36 pm

    I give kudos to the guy for keeping the ground open to bike traffic. How hard is it go at a reasonable speed?

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  • John Peterson September 23, 2009 at 9:39 pm

    The cemetery owner may have a right to put in speed bumps, but he should mark them clearly….If I wrecked like that on an unmarked speed bump of poor design I’d sue…..

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  • Doug September 23, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    Sounds like a nice privilage to me. My rule of thumb is to never run, ride or exercise through a cemetary. It is disrespectful. Ever been to a grave site of a loved one? How would you feel to have someone doing intervals or commuting past or over their grave? i learned my lesson while out for a run in D.C., i thought it would be a good way to see Arlington Cemetary. Wrong, as i was corrected by the staff there. if it were me, i’d find an alternate route. add the extra miles, that is why you are on a bike in the first place.

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  • johlah September 23, 2009 at 10:14 pm

    People are going way way too fast generally out there not only in the cemetery but on the eastbank esplanade as well–and other bike paths–it’s a small number of people who aren’t actually riding safely–but this is becoming more and more a problem generally I find–people don’t see speed as a safety issue

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  • Oh Word? September 23, 2009 at 10:25 pm

    If a neighbor let you eat from his garden for free, and you did so for 3 years, wouldn’t you want him to tell you if he was going to uproot everything so you didn’t starve?!

    I think sometimes forewarning is necessary for safety’s sake.

    If Ms. Hale tries to sue them, then THAT’S a problem!

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  • Anonymous September 23, 2009 at 10:27 pm

    Seriously… how many of you have actually ridden over these new bumps? They are so abrupt that anything over 5 mph is unsafe, and even at that speed they are jarring.

    The skilled riders who are descending too fast for other’s comfort will simple bunny hop them.

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  • Lester September 23, 2009 at 10:29 pm

    Reminds me of some surprises I’ve had riding mountain bike trails I’ve ridden for years, but change drastically after flood events.

    Perhaps some warning was in order, but perhaps reasonable cemetery speeds should have been observed. Seems like 15 mph, tops.

    Be safe, y’all.

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  • dahoos September 23, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    You should always be in control. Surprise speed bump, pothole, wet leaves…you need to be ready for what you might encounter. It comes with the territory. Deal with it. Others aren’t to blame when you go down on your own.

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  • Go ride them! September 23, 2009 at 10:33 pm

    Seriously… how many of you have actually ridden these before posting? The problem is how short and abrupt these new bumps are. They are jarring at 5 mph, dangerous at 10, and will take you down at 15.

    I’m all for speed control, but these are more like crash-traps.

    Further, most of the skilled “speed demon” cyclists will simple bunny hop these and the situation will not change.

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  • Lester September 23, 2009 at 10:34 pm

    The first page of a google search for cemetery speed limits gives a range of 5 mph to 30 kph (18.64 mph). I’d say somewhere in the middle is prudent.

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  • Respectfully.. September 23, 2009 at 10:38 pm

    Perhaps as a deterrent for the ‘people’ who ride over graves and flip off mourners, the cemetry could just leave an open/unmarked/unsigned ‘hole’ in the grass, oh about six feet deep and rectangular in shape, and let them find that the hard way…

    And for me, speedbumps are fine, signage would be better.

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  • f5 September 23, 2009 at 10:46 pm

    Seager (#48):

    “You guys are missing the point. She hit them and almost wrecked because they were new and unpainted. If someone put a new hazard on a route I’d been biking for three years there is a good chance I’d be taken out by it too.”

    No, I’m not missing the point at all. I think you might have though — she did wreck the third time.

    I too saw them the first day there were there, unpainted and just around a steep corner uphill from the maintenance shed. I was paying attention and not going too fast, so I slowed down. It really even wasn’t that difficult, I was probably going 15mph and my brakes are old and spongy. But I’m not trying to argue “I can do it so anyone should be able to”. I’m am arguing: Know your limits, and be responsible for your own accidents. And don’t play the victim card just to save face.

    It’s private property, and we’re entitled to exactly nothing. Using an interview in this Blog to paint the property owners as somehow liable for her crash is irresponsible at best and frankly detestable in my opinion if this gets it shut down for everyone permanently.

    Based on the article, her judgement and basic abillity to operate a bicycle safely are looking pretty weak. If you encounter one speed bump, chances are there are more. Simply going about things the same way but just picking a different road on the assumption that there aren’t additional speedbumps is laughable if you ask me.

    Lets hope Katelyn’s negligence and victimhood didn’t just cost us a cycling artery.

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  • JR September 23, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    Seems like there should’ve been temporary signs and flags warning of traffic calming ahead. It’s unfortunate the yellow paint came so late.

    A stop sign was recently installed in my neighborhood at a previously uncontrolled intersection and the city posted flags on the sign poles with bright orange to alert users of the roadway of the traffic change. I’ve also seen bright orange signs that say “TRAFFIC CHANGE AHEAD”. I realize the cemetery isn’t a public works agency, but these would’ve helped avoid injuries.

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  • carlsson September 23, 2009 at 11:35 pm

    #45 John Eric Lutz, read #42. The world does not revolve or care about you. Grow up.

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  • Q`ztal September 24, 2009 at 12:24 am

    Knowing your limits in a situation like this is incumbent on knowing the condition of the path in front of you; without that knowledge you are walking in to the black with no flashlight.

    common sense #42
    While we can appreciate that this is a cemetery first and foremost, it is in fact Open To The Public. As such, whether bikes are allowed or not, unless the property owner makes an effort to deter said traffic he will be responsible for any unusual injuries or deaths incurred from access on to his property.

    We see this when a thief breaks in to a home, injures them self in some way inside the house and then manages to successfully sue for damages. Ridiculous you might say, and so do I, but if that injury is caused by the amped up tasers that I’ve rigged to the windows in my house such a lawsuit seems more reasonable. It might be YouTube-ilicious to watch but it will most like cause me some trouble.

    In the case of these new speed bumps they were initially inconspicuous. Some people like f5 #61 “…saw them the first day there were there…”. Some of us don’t have the luxury of daylight when we are commuting to our jobs. I suppose you could say that you have to watch out for anything, expect everything and ride at the appropriate speed. There was no reason to expect this new hazard. No department of transportation gets to put out a construction zone or other obstructing road hazards without a warning. Speed bumps popping up without warning seems less likely than a mower left in the path by groundskeepers; either is dangerous, either is unexpected and so are reasonably unforseeable. Is it reasonable to expect that someone will booby trap a popular bike route with a gallon or two of clean clear oil, NO. I experienced this and tell you there was no safe speed to ride over that; it also blended in the abundant morning moisture on the road making it inconspicuous.

    This route clearly sounds like jogging speed in the dark if you don’t have stadium lights for your bike.

    Could be worse: he could have installed full width rumble strips all the way down.

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  • Q`ztal September 24, 2009 at 12:27 am

    oops
    please delete this post when the tag after “open to the public” is corrected

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  • kitty September 24, 2009 at 12:45 am

    damn that is a lot of comments! i think it is really ridiculous how people are so afraid of bikes. Honestly, the worst that could happen is a little accident. REALITY CHECK, cars can kill you, bikes (almost) impossible. May I further add here, MR NOBLE (ironic) has made a minor situation worse by installing the bumps. Congrats you just caused 3 accidents, that we are aware of, in as many days.

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  • Steve B. September 24, 2009 at 12:54 am

    It sounds to me like the cemetery if fulfilling the role of a safe bike route that the city has failed to implement.

    That in turn should entitle Riverview Cemetery to city funds to slow bike traffic and make it safer for all road users. Or, the city should be pressured to come up with a better solution. I respect and deeply appreciate that Riverview allows bike traffic, but they should not have to bear the burden of inadequate bike access by themselves.

    I am not intimately familiar with the alternatives, but could something be done by PBOT/Metro to facilitate safer connections for cyclists in this area? If there were a better option, then the density of riders through the cemetery would likely diminish. Thoughts?

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  • Kangaru September 24, 2009 at 12:57 am

    Okay, so what’s it going to take to get Taylor’s Ferry fixed?

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  • Duncan September 24, 2009 at 5:24 am

    This would be one of the rare times I would agree with the “slow it down” crowd.

    But I also think signage would be a good idea- are there posted speed limits in the cemetery? Seems to me that the last cemetery I was in had a 10MPH speed limit. Kinda hard to crash and burn at that speed.

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  • Patrick Valdez September 24, 2009 at 6:18 am

    You should be aware of your surroundings at all times when out biking. Being that it is private property I see no issues with the speed bumps. I’ve ridden through there myself and seen way too many cyclists speeding through and almost colliding with other riders. The addition of a sign warning of speed bumps would be nice but in general I accept the reasoning for having them installed in the first place.

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  • davidio September 24, 2009 at 6:26 am

    I’m curious – did Ms. Hale attempt to start a conversation with the cemetery, or did she first email BP?

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  • jollydodger September 24, 2009 at 7:52 am

    Classic road use conflict issue…where does one safely ride over the hill without dangerous car interaction? Even the cemetary isn’t safe enough for those who expect us all to be twelve feet long and loud enough to be heard over a eulogy.

    The road on the rivers edge into Lake O’ is nearly a suicide run…a bike lane or a shoulder at least and half of the cemetary riders would be flat land commuters. The more convienant and safe routes which are available, the less dense the presence of bikers becomes overall in any one given location…

    Still we don’t know what West Linn/Oregon City bikers are gonna do for a ‘bridge’ when the oldie goes under construction…blind ‘auto only’ building design of the interstate bridge there with a 200 foot climb and no bike lanes doesn’t seem a feasible option…

    My kingdom for a bike path bridge in every riverside town, a ‘free’ lane for only ped/pedal travel next to every highway and a house of congress who rides their bikes at least 51% of the time.

    By the people means a few more of ‘us’ making the rules and a few less tax dollars subsidizing the asphalting of “their” vision of America.

    But for convienance and fashion goes the fate of the free…the home of the brave is all we have left, speedbumps or not.

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  • Diego September 24, 2009 at 7:57 am

    I live right next to the top of the cemetery. I regularly walk through the cemeteries in my neighborhood (there are several) to de-stress or reflect. Some of my relatives are buried in Riverview.

    When you’re on a peaceful walk and some guy in bright-yellow logo-covered spandex comes whizzing past you at 30 mph while shouting to his other cyclist buddies, yeah, it’s dangerous and irritating.

    I’ve ridden through Riverview a few times myself. It is NOT a safe place to ride fast. I typically ride at jogging speed, and if I burn through some extra brake pads, so be it.

    As others have said, there are a lot of other obstacles besides speed bumps – puddles, potholes, blind corners, tree debris, mourners, cars, groundskeepers, and other cyclists climbing the hill.

    A lot of cyclists do ride too fast going downhill in that cemetery, and I hope these bumps help put a stop to it.

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  • bikieboy September 24, 2009 at 8:33 am

    “(Mr, Noble) said that they (speed bumps) were ‘carefully discussed and thought out.'”

    I am absolutely appreciative of the fact that Riverview doesn’t *have* to allow bike access through their property, and yet in the spirit of community does. Thank you. I nominated them for an Alice B. award for this reason. Thank you again.

    But the speed bumps were not carefully thought out – i don’t need to give it a test ride, anyone who cycles can tell that from the photo that they’re not safe at any speed above 5 mph, if that.

    And not marking them? no signs, no paint, nothing to cue a cyclist that something has changed?

    Poorly though out & executed – now there’s a apt word – and likely creating a more dangerous situation than previously existed.

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  • Jonathan September 24, 2009 at 9:38 am

    Thank you for keeping the cemetery open. The cemetery provides a safe bike route and is a huge asset to the community. I am sorry there are a few real jerks who ride through the cemetery and cause problems for everyone. There are a lot of jerks on bikes, just as there are a lot of jerks in cars, and I am glad Mr. Noble is looking for solution that doesn’t close the bike route for everyone. As much as I love riding fast down the hill. it is even more important to me to have a safe way to get up the hill without dealing with cars. Perhaps there can be a collection to create bike paths there. Maybe even Lewis & Clark can help with the fund, since the cemetery provides an important commuter route for the school and allows them to keep the number of cars at LC at a minimum.

    If you ride down a hill one day and almost crash because you hit a new speed bump, wouldn’t you think that the next day you would be a little more careful? If on the second day the same thing happens, why would anyone think that changing routes would make a difference? Personally, I would be going a lot slower down the hill from that point on. I am glad they put markings on the road because in the shadows speed bumps, pot holes and other bumps can be hard to see, but that does not excuse someone making the same mistake three times and not learning from any of them.

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  • David September 24, 2009 at 9:39 am

    I really like the “rumble strips” on the Oaks Bottom connection between the Springwater and SE Milwaukie/SE Mitchell. They’re jarring enough to make me slow down to an appropriate speed on this steep section of trail, but not so severe as to cause me to lose control or crash. Plus, I believe they’re on a concrete pad (I could be wrong, as it’s been a few weeks since I last rode there), which contrasts nicely with the otherwise black asphalt trail surface and makes the bumps highly visible. I think these bumps would be a sensible alternative to the ones that were recently installed in the cemetery.

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  • joe September 24, 2009 at 9:47 am

    damn, I have taken that shortcut across the grass at the top a few times – had no idea I was desecrating “babygraves”. sorry.

    also, while I don’t ride to SW for my job anymore, I really love biking through RiverView.

    I wonder what we should do to make a positive impact there(besides slowing down). if we all agree that there is a segment of any community(10% is what is being quoted here) that will be disrespectful and problematic, maybe the 90% should make themselves more beneficial?

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  • jan September 24, 2009 at 10:01 am

    Years ago, I was one of those “bad” riders, careening downward one Sunday afternoon, came around a corner and slammed to a stop at a funeral in process. Since then, I’ve been very cautious on the descents (even though it would be fun to go full out). I commend the cemetary staff for not shutting the gates on us, so to speak. Get the word out and slow down! Losing access would be terrible.

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  • Bahueh September 24, 2009 at 10:16 am

    Hey Dr. Lutz…grow up and consider taking responsibility for your own **deleted** actions…threatening to sue a non-profit? you’re all class man…

    are you going to sue the owners of trees this fall when wet leaves are on the street and you still haven’t figured out how to control a bike?

    to all the people who think they’re victims in this..you simply don’t get it.

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  • Dave September 24, 2009 at 10:23 am

    I also know of someone that crashed on those speed bumps. Someone is going to break their neck soon. It seems they put them in to avoid an accidents, but they are just creating more. I have never witnessed any of the rude issues he talks about from bikers. I can’t imagine bikes going down that hill too fast, because of the sharp turns. If you go too fast, you are going to crash on those turns. In the end a few smaller bumps would have been a better solution, those things are like curbs.

    I ride that hill everyday – up and down. I appreciate the route and would hate to have to take Terwilliger, but I have to defend the bikers here. Bikes have to go through the bushes, because they close the gates at dusk and have not provided a way for bikes or people to get through. People are always going to take the path of least resistance. This would be an easy fix by simply installing a walkway around the gates. Anyone “riding over baby graves” is half the responsibility of the cemeteries’. Give us an obvious and approved route and we’ll take it, but at the moment there is not. I would be willing to donate $500 to make this happen and I’m sure they could get some funds from the BTA and Lewis & Clark. It seems so obvious, but I’m not sure they are willing to do it. River View?

    I’ve also noticed that the grounds workers seems to be disgruntle towards me and I’m not even going fast. Sort of like I’m intruding on their private time as they sit in front of the garage sipping coffee. Hang out there in the morning and watch them race up the hill in their trucks, talk about going too fast. When I’m passing them on the way down, they drive in the middle of the road and don’t even try to make room for you. I imagine the complaints are more from them, then mourners.

    If River View isn’t going to step up to resolve the issue (speed bumps are not the answer and denial of the real issue), then I think the city needs to take action and find a route more appropriate for bikes. There is a huge need for bike traffic to get to that area and I imagine there are hundreds of bikes doing it now. They are going to start work on the new Sellwood Bridge soon and should assume bike traffic will only increase when this happens. This should really have been part of that project and funding. One solutions is that they don’t need to go through the cemetery directly, but build a route through the woods next to it. I know this is also cemetery property, but they have been trying to sell it and I doubt it will ever be used for graves. The city should just annex it, turn it into a park and add bike lanes through it. Where do we start to make this happen?

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  • Dan September 24, 2009 at 10:24 am

    How do you “almost” break a spoke?

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  • SJ September 24, 2009 at 10:51 am

    A great compromise: private property owner takes steps to make a road safer for visitors, bikers still get to use the road.

    What’s funny are complaints about a speed bump doing its job. And to think that some cyclists pay to race cross tracks that features such obstacles and love it!

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  • Opus the Poet September 24, 2009 at 10:56 am

    I don’t know what the Oregon law is, but in TX allowing public passage for as long as the cemetery has been would have created a right of way, which in turn would have required public notification about the speed bumps and warning signs before installation. They could still have been installed, but people would have had to have warning before installation, and a warning sign at the entrance and yellow paint on them as soon as they were built. Also the design would have had to have approval from the PBOT or whatever the local authority was.

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  • Michael M. September 24, 2009 at 10:57 am

    I’m astonished that Mr. Noble hasn’t already closed the cemetery to cyclists, given the abundance of bad behavior. Ms. Hale’s experiences are just another example, as if more are needed, that some people never learn. Last week I witnessed a female cyclist traveling up N Williams *almost* taken out by a male cyclist blowing a stop sign. What does she do, not ten blocks later? Blows through stop signs herself. Really, the stupidity and arrogance are mind boggling.

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  • Opus the Poet September 24, 2009 at 11:02 am

    OH and BTW blasting through funeral processions and swearing at mourners? Way to win friends and influence people. Thumbs way down on that kind of behavior. I’m not impressed by either side in this situation, especially the cyclists.

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  • Duncan September 24, 2009 at 11:08 am

    “allowing public passage for as long as the cemetery has been would have created a right of way”

    someone translate that to english for me?

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  • […] OR a popular bike route is “traffic calmed” because cyclists were going too fast. New speed bumps on popular cemetery route: Necessarily dangerous? OK guys, blasting through funeral processions and swearing at mourners? Way to win friends and […]

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  • wsbob September 24, 2009 at 11:21 am

    In terms of design, there definitely are variations in the shape of speed bumps that can affect differently, the way a vehicle responds when it goes over them; width, height, or whether it goes completely from one side of the road to the other all factor into this.

    Speed bumps with pretty good height on them…I’ll guess 5 inches…but with a gradual approach…using a total speed bump width of, say, 2 and a half feet… to the highest point can be a jarring experience for a motor vehicle to travel over at more than 15mph, but not a problem at all for a bike, allowing a gentle rise/fall at 15-20 mph.

    Despite the sunglasses placed next to the speed bump in the picture above, it’s hard to tell very well how high or wide the speed bump is. Here on my monitor, it looks as though it might be 4-5 inches high, but only 12-15 inches wide.

    The executive director of Riverview needed a type of speed bump that would keep people on bikes limited to a reasonable speed for traveling through a cemetery, so it seems like he’s chosen the right type. The type with a gradual approach wouldn’t have done that. Motor vehicles in the cemetery have been said to travel at 10mph or less, so the abrupt type speed bump won’t be much of a problem for them; might still be irritating though, even riding in luxury limos with good suspension.

    As others have already said, The executive director might have gone an additional extra mile and put up warning signs or cones in advance of the speed bumps during the time after they were installed yet still not painted, but he was probably under no obligation to do so whatsoever. Anyone traveling through the cemetery’s roads at a speed that’s reasonable for them wouldn’t have had a problem with the unpainted speed bumps even if they hadn’t seen them.

    It’s unfortunate that a lady broke her collarbone when unexpectedly coming upon one of the newly installed yet unpainted speed bumps. Doesn’t seem though, that she’d stand much chance of getting compensation through a lawsuit, unless she was an employee or an invited guest of the cemetery, and the cemetery knew that a bicycle was going to be her mode of transportation through the cemetery.

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  • coyote September 24, 2009 at 11:27 am

    “…and brake her collarbone” 10th paragraph

    JM, I think you mean “break”

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  • Bahueh September 24, 2009 at 11:44 am

    DAve #84…or you could just slow down.

    build a new park to help accomodate your bad behavior?

    is that your only solution?

    you’re a guest in the cemetery…start acting like one.

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  • Brian September 24, 2009 at 11:45 am

    Quit your whining, people.

    No signs are necessary because people should already be going slow! If you needed the advance notice of the bump, you were going too fast. End of story. This is a private road. He’s well within his rights and his responsibilities on this issue. In fact, going well above and beyond what a normal private property owner is expected to do.

    It’s too bad that people crashed, but I feel only as much sympathy for them as I do for a rider going too fast and overcooking a corner.

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  • Lindsay September 24, 2009 at 11:54 am

    I think signs are a great idea. They would not be very expensive. It would also be good to make the speedbumps less abrupt…they’re pretty hard on the bikes, unless you’re going SO slow that you’re at a walking pace. But, the cemetery is non-profit so i can appreciate their cost constraints.

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  • ru 18 yet? September 24, 2009 at 11:56 am

    Waaah, I went over a spped bump too fast and crashed, waaaaah!!!

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  • Dave September 24, 2009 at 12:04 pm

    “The biggest of the two claims under Measure 37, filed by River View Cemetery in SW Portland, seeks to develop residential properties on 185 acres of surplus land—land that is currently protected from development under “open space” zoning. If the cemetery doesn’t get its way, it’s demanding $24 million in compensation from the City of Portland.”

    Brian – That’s your tax dollar they are demanding the city pay them – start whining!

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  • Diego September 24, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    Dave,

    That Measure 37 claim was rejected quite a while ago. Cemeteries have been falling on hard times for years because more and more people are being cremated rather than buried.

    If the cemetery can’t afford to maintain the grounds anymore, they will have to shut down, and the land is typically turned over to the city. There are a couple of cemeteries near Riverview that are currently managed by the parks department.

    While I don’t agree with Riverview’s claim, I understand why they did it. The Measure 37 claim didn’t have anything to do with their *desire* to develop, but rather their wish to get ‘free’ money from the city because they were not allowed to develop.

    Have you ever maximized your tax deductions, participated in a tax credit (energy, cash for clunkers, first time home buyers, etc.) or applied for student loans that you probably didn’t need? Same idea.

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  • Matt Picio September 24, 2009 at 12:25 pm

    Seager (#48) – I think you’re missing at least one of the points. That cemetary is on a serious slope with switchbacks. At any time there could be rockfall, a landslide, a downed tree, or other hazards that could place themselves across the path at night. Some of those hazards could be as invisible as the unpainted bump. Vehicle operators have to move at a slow enough speed to stop without hitting them.

    Katelyn is a nice person, and a good cyclist. In this case, however, she may have been outrunning her light – if so, then by definition she was riding too fast for conditions. Many of us do it (myself included) – the statement isn’t an indictment, merely a statement of fact. It’s pretty obvious from a number of the comments above that many of us ride too fast down that hill, and have had close encounters or collisions that encouraged us to be a bit more cautious on the way down.

    When we take things for granted, and when we assume that a route is safe because we’ve ridden it for 3 years, and start riding on automatic, our chances of avoiding unexpected obstacles are much lower. Sure, it would’ve been nice if the speed bumps were painted the same day they were installed, but that’s not always possible. It would’ve been nice if Mr. Noble had posted a couple signs alerting cyclists to the upcoming change – but he’s under no requirement to, and signs would cost money, something most non-profits don’t have a lot of. And in the case of night riding, the cemetary gates are closed and no one is really supposed to be in there – I doubt the cemetary would be found liable in an injury suit under those circumstances, but I agree with previous posters who said that a lawsuit would likely mean the end of cycling in the cemetary.

    Bottom line: Be alert. Keep your eyes on the road and scanning for threats. Keep the headphones out of your ears. Notice what’s around you, and keep in mind that every blind corner, every hill, curve or bush blocking a sightline could hide a car, a deer, a rockslide or a grieving widow. Be prepared to react to those potential crises.

    drew (#52)- “blood alley”? Have there been a rash of injuries or deaths on Taylor’s Ferry? It’s certainly not pleasant to go down if you are traveling a lot slower than traffic, but if you’re not afraid of speed one can go quite fast down that road on your average bike.

    The public authorities in question are the Portland Bureau of Planning and PBOT. I’d be hesitant to put too much of the blame at their feet – the existing roads in that area are at least 40-50 years old, and Portland hasn’t been seriously planning for bikes before about 25-30 years ago. Now, mitigation of the problems in that corridor would be very expensive – so before any of us starts slinging mud at the city over it, perhaps we should ask ourselves who is going to pay for it, and how to secure funding for planning, review, the DEIS and engineering.

    Q’ztal (#68) – It is NOT open to the public. It is private property upon which a temporary and revocable privilige of passage has been placed. The property owner HAS made efforts to deter traffic – signs are posted, the property is gated, and numerous announcements have been made to the community through local and media channels. A court would decide where exactly the line of “reasonable effort” lies, but a common-sense interpretation would seem to say that the owners have met that standard.

    kitty (#70) – Imagine losing your mother, or brother, or spouse, and pulling up in the cemetary for the interrment, and then having your group have to wait to walk across the street because a bunch of cyclists are flying down the hill. Cemetaries have a lot of emotionally distraut people, who can feel afraid, intimidated, or upset at cyclists who pass too fast, too close, or through the middle of their funeral procession.

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  • Chris September 24, 2009 at 12:33 pm

    I am house-sitting in West Linn and commuted through this route this morning. I found the speed bumps to be unnecessarily tall and pointed. It was difficult to go over at a slow/moderate speed downhill and am glad I was aware of them prior. For the severity I’d think a sign should be added to caution cyclists to a crawl or bike boulevard-style soft speed bumps may help and be safer.

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  • No to TV Interview September 24, 2009 at 12:39 pm

    Just rode through Riverview this morning. Channel 2 was there looking to interview bike riders.

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  • wsbob September 24, 2009 at 12:40 pm

    “The biggest of the two claims under Measure 37, filed by River View Cemetery in SW Portland, seeks to develop residential properties on 185 acres of surplus land—land that is currently protected from development under “open space” zoning. If the cemetery doesn’t get its way, it’s demanding $24 million in compensation from the City of Portland.” quote supplied by Dave #98

    Dave, that detail about Riverview’s use of its property doesn’t seem to have a lot of relevance to the topic of this thread (or maybe it does…see below), but since you’ve posted it, why not accompany it with where and when it was published.

    Does the following excerpt from your comment #84 have to do with what you’re referring to? Are the woods part of what the above quote refers to as ‘surplus land’? How much of the 185 acres is woods, and if the city owned the property, would the property allow for a bike route that could adequately replace the route currently going through the cemetery?

    “They are going to start work on the new Sellwood Bridge soon and should assume bike traffic will only increase when this happens. This should really have been part of that project and funding. One solutions is that they don’t need to go through the cemetery directly, but build a route through the woods next to it. I know this is also cemetery property, but they have been trying to sell it and I doubt it will ever be used for graves. The city should just annex it, turn it into a park and add bike lanes through it. Where do we start to make this happen?” Dave #84

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  • Grimm September 24, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    Could they have tried a few signs to start out with? I’ve ridden the cemetery many times (never with incident) and think its great compared to the other SW options. Maybe there should be a more designated cyclist route, and the reason people go across the sites at the top is because when the gates are closed the only way out is to cut up or get off and attempt to weasel through the bushes. Give us a small path where we don’t get hit in the face with a branch or a button to open the gate from the inside and we’ll never cut through again.

    And as for the cyclist flipping off and old lady in the story, I think thats only half the story. In my experience cyclists only give you the bird when you nearly kill them or do something flat out rude.

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  • Kt September 24, 2009 at 12:53 pm

    Dave, #84, and everyone who wants to ride through the cemetery after the gates are closed:

    The cemetery is PRIVATE PROPERTY. If the gates are closed, you need to find another way around. You are trespassing, otherwise, and the property owners are within their rights to have the police take action.

    To everyone who likes to ride through the cemetery and is complaining about the speed bumps:

    The cemetery is PRIVATE PROPERTY. The property owners don’t have to let you ride through. The property owners could have set up signs that say “NO THROUGH TRAFFIC”. The property owners could have closed the road to cyclists. Instead, the property owners are trying to find a way to keep their road open for the cyclists who want to cut through, and keep things safe.

    You folks are cutting through sacred ground. Have a bit of respect, eh?

    If you don’t like what the PRIVATE PROPERTY OWNER is doing with his PRIVATE PROPERTY, maybe you all should turn your attentions to doing something about Taylor’s Ferry or about finding an alternate route.

    I’m sorry that people are crashing here. But I can’t see that it’s anyone’s fault but theirs.

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  • Dave September 24, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    Bahueh #94 – No, I don’t have an issue going too fast on that hill – I don’t ride fast and I don’t disrespect the mourners or the cemetery. I always act like a guest, no matter where I am. You and others are making it sound like this is common practice by the bikers through the cemetery. I would argue that it’s not and feel there might be some animosity from the staff for some reason. I also can’t see how anyone could go more that 15mph anyway with all the sharp turns and leaves. It just seems the build of those bumps was a little vindictive, a little over-kill. From my experience, the traffic cutting through the cemetery as a short-cut to the Sellwood Bridge causes more issues and they certainly go faster, so maybe those bumps will help with that. I’ll be fine and can handle them, but others will crash and get seriously hurt. Not something I wish upon anyone, not even you.

    And no, it’s not my only solution. I’m offering $500 of my own money (still available) to provide a solution to parts of this problem, but if they don’t want us there, something else needs to be done. I’d be fine with a new route up Taylor’s Ferry, but as it is now, it impractical and dangerous.

    The open space next to the cemetery is also an option for building a bike trail through (feel free to leave it natural, so a new park does not need to be built), just like the bike trail they have in Tryon State Park that’s at the top of that hill. I think the open space would be a nice addition to Tryon as it currently is the home to deer, coyotes, and other wild things and would allow a natural corridor between the river and Tryon. It would make a great addition to Portland trails.

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  • Grimm September 24, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    Oh yes… and thanks Mr. Noble and Riverview for keeping this open. I’ve never had an issue with patrons of the cemetery, staff or cyclists. Then again I usually just ride up it and enjoy the switchback, views, and take something else home (like Barbur). I’ve only ridden after racing at Alpenrose, and I’m so spent I take it slow the whole way home.

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  • Opus the Poet September 24, 2009 at 1:16 pm

    I see I have confused people more than enlightened them. I shall try again. I don’t know if OR has a similar law but in TX if you allow people to pass through your property (General public) for a certain length of time they have that right in perpetuity, the road, path, or walk becomes a right of way. Different lengths of time for different modes of transport, I think pedestrians it’s like a year and a day, cars it’s 7 years, not sure what the time for bicycles is but it’s between the car and pedestrian spans. You have to block access to the path, walk or road continuously for 24 hours annually to prevent it from becoming a right of way.

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  • wsbob September 24, 2009 at 2:02 pm

    Opus, Oregon has a law something like that. Tektronix’ campus, located in the city I live, has roads through it that the public is not generally prevented from using. Each year on New Years Eve day, barricades go up for a day to keep those roads from becoming a right of way.

    Does Tektronix 364 day of year policy of not preventing non-business related members of the public from driving through their property mean Tektronix is obligated to cater to the needs of road users whose mode and style of transportation doesn’t conform to that which the company’s roads are designed to serve?

    Same thing likely applies to Riverview.

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  • Chuck September 24, 2009 at 2:03 pm

    Join me for a minute to review what a ride through Riverview provides:
    *A great view of Mt Hood and the east valley
    *The 3 young deer, and their parents, who I just saw yesterday AM.
    *Coyotes- 1 I saw just yesterday also, in addition to the amazing choral group assembled one foggy January this year to serenade me the entire ride up
    *Spring blossoms- its like riding through a floral smoothie some days
    * Buckeyes!!! Have you looked at the color of those things up close?
    * Maple leaves the size of dinner plates, and technicolored in fall just because….
    *Squirrels… at least I think they are squirrels, that do that crazy zig zag thing!
    *A free cardio workout on the way up
    * Daily bike handling seminars
    * A daily freindly good morning from someone there as he opens the day and extends a welcome to everyone he sees- even sends a flash of light if hes too far away!
    * The quiet…

    This is what is offered to us cyclists as we pass through. Oh, and then we’re now asked to slow down a bit and enjoy these even more…
    Do we have too many of these places to ride through here in the countries best biking mecca?
    We’re all in this together…

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  • Bahueh September 24, 2009 at 2:23 pm

    Dave..#106..how ’bout keeping your $500 and just slowing down at the speed bumps? why complicate a rather easy solution?

    these bumps are literally 6″ wide..there are two of them on your way down the hill…12″ out of your way to slow down on a commute of several miles…seriously? you’re proposing to construct all new trails/infrastructure so riders don’t have to slow down for 12″?

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  • q`Tzal September 24, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    Need a comments poll.
    After comments reach a certain number, and the argument works down in to certain themes, break down the issue in to bite sited pieces like:
    Who is to blame in this situation:
    1) cyclist whom I feel sorry for
    2) cyclist, no sympathy
    3) property owner
    4) undecided
    5) ODOT, PBOT, USDOT, heck sue’m all!

    If I was in charge of this cemetery and had to solve this problem I would have:
    1) installed speed bumps
    2) installed rumble strips
    3) done nothing
    4) closed the route to cyclists
    5) undecided
    6) armed the groundskeepers with paintball guns and let the situation resolve itself.

    Digg style comment voting wouldn’t hurt either: excellent comments would be voted up and not be repeated every 4 or 5 posts.

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  • Dave September 24, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    Bahueh – #111. Mr. Noble had a list of complaints against bikes, not just speeding. My $500 is to help eliminate the issue of bikes cutting through the grass (“right over the top of baby gravesites”) to get around the gates. They often close the gates early to stop commuter traffic from using the cemetery as a shortcut to the Sellwood Bridge. To eliminate that complaint – build a path around them, I’d help!

    I have issue with the speed bumps, not because I speed or can’t get over them, but because they are dangerous at any speed. There are many ways you can slow people down without trying to kill them.

    And yes, if in the end they do not want bikes on their property as Mr. Noble alluded to, than an alternative route will need to be built or at least considered – not because of the speed bumps, not because we can’t slow down, and not because people are getting hurt. People need to get from point A to point B somehow – safely.

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  • Collette September 24, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    I feel so fortunate to have such a beautiful place to ride through. The cemetery is one of the best parts of our regular 25 mile Portland ride and I would greatly appreciate keeping it as an open road to cyclists. I hit one of the bumps totally unaware before there was caution yellow paint and my first reaction was that the owners must have a very good reason to have done this. The speed bumps are too steep and not easily navigated, but they have succeeded in making the habitual problems incurred by the owners surface very sharply as well. I sincerely hope that there comes a resolution that benefits all.

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  • emir September 24, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    I rode them the day they were installed and unpainted. They were not marked in any way and I crashed pretty hard. I ended up with some road rash and for a day I was under impression that I broke my wrist but it turned out not to be the case. Speed can be an issue there but smoother and better market bumps would be more helpful than these. Some signs need to be posted as well, otherwise someone will get really hurt and sue the cemetery for these road-blocks.

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  • Foz-man September 24, 2009 at 3:47 pm

    Sometimes I’m just ashamed to be a cyclist.

    Mr. Noble, thank you for letting us use your beautiful property. I now fear that, due to no fault of your own, you will be forced to end this practice soon due to whining, wimpy, entitled cyclist that think you owe them something.

    For those of you who ride this route, you can take Idaho off Mcadam, then Idaho to Corbett, then Corbett will lead you to Barbur, it’s a nice ride too.

    To everyone that thinks they deserve more signs, better bumps, the ability to ride through private property, time to cowboy up!

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  • Chris September 24, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    The bumps are as tall as they are wide, requiring riders on road bikes to essentially stop before going over to avoid a dangerous jolt and potential wheel damage. Good idea, poor execution.

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  • Rosecityoak September 24, 2009 at 4:30 pm

    Hi folks. I must be crash dummy #3. I sporadically commute by bike to work in Clackamas. I was unaware of either the controvery concerning bike riders or the installation of speed bumps.

    On Tuesday morning, I was riding down the hill near the maintenance building. As I approached it, I looked up at the mirror to see if there was any approaching traffic. Suddenly, I had an out of body experience. I went down hard over my handlebars and experienced serious road rash on my arms, a deep bruise on my left hand, road rash on my right leg and a shoulder strain.

    After I crashed, I sought out the offending pot hole. That is when I spotted the bump. A maintenence worker approached me and asked me rather perfunctorilly, “did you break any bones?” After I said “no”, he told me that he installled the bump last week.

    While waiting in the doctor’s office, I phoned the cemetary and asked one of the staff members to consider installing a sign. I also notified the BTA. Their public policy advocate, Michelle “the go getter”, immediately set up a meeting with David to review the situation. I told Michelle that I would contribute $100 to defray cost of signage. I hope other bikers will join me in working with the BTA and Riverview is coming up with a mutually workable solution.

    I hope nobody else joins the list of crash dummies. I am still reeling from my fall, my first crash in nearly 40 years.

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  • Grande Papa September 24, 2009 at 5:12 pm

    I know Kate, Kate is a friend of mine.
    Riding her bike is her only form of transportation. For the past several years she has probably ridden 150 miles a week rain or shine, she knows how to ride a bike. She recently graduated from L&C where her thesis was on the roads of Portland. Kate is a currently a volunteer @ Americor working as a charities coordinator.
    Kate’s issue was to alert her fellow riders of a danger.
    cut her some slack.

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  • Steve B. September 24, 2009 at 5:57 pm

    I don’t think we need to “sling mud” or “blame” PBOT or related agencies either.

    My question is: are there improvements to be made to calm traffic and make bike travel more pleasant in this corridor? The cemetery path is beautiful, no doubt, but I also understand people rely on this as an important connection on their routes.

    If we have hit a critical mass of cyclists on this route that it’s this large of a problem, then it appears to be the symptom of difficult public connections in this area.

    I like to dream.

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  • Kevin Wagoner September 24, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    I ride through the cemetery often on my commute. It is a safe and very peaceful part of my ride. I have other options to downtown from SW Burlingame such as Barber, Terwilliger, Dosch-Vista, and Corbet. I take the Waterfront-Cemetery route when I want a more peaceful commute. Taylors Ferry is not much fun and Macadam seems dangerous.

    I am very excited this route exist. Several of us enjoyed it the other day during the Big Dog Tour de Lab.

    The reported behavior is disappointing. I respect the responsibilities that Mr. Noble and his team have. I am glad they are willing to work with us and would love to be part of the summit that is suggested.

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  • tankagnolo bob September 24, 2009 at 8:21 pm

    I have mixed feelings. If I was the property owner after all this, I would just ban any traffic of folks who do not have folks in the cemetery. It is not his job to take care of folks who cycle faster than they can see at night. I hit a 2×4 at night once, hard, but was not going fast, so fell off with a minor scrape and a good dent in my rim. Don’t ride faster than you can see!

    As for the public sector, fix the road that folks are using the cemetery to avoid. How about a bike lane there. It should NOT be the private parties problem to provide a bike route. The owner is nice to even attempt it. If I was the owner, it would be closed to, or “Walk Bikes Through” from now on.

    Avid cyclist – Tankagnolo Bob

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  • Eric R September 24, 2009 at 8:30 pm

    Riverview is a tremendous resource for bikers, runners, and walkers. As the days turn dark, wet, and increased road debris, please use a bell around corners, and a light set. David Noble walks in the mornings, so stop and say hi to him.

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  • Q`ztal September 24, 2009 at 8:48 pm

    Conclusions:

    > Unless a car is involved any accident experienced by a cyclist is the cyclists own fault. Unfortunately, this is not totally false.
    > Some people are rude and ruin things for everyone.
    > Private property is private property. When you go to someone’s house you follow their rules.
    > We need an actual lawyer to explain our lack of rights in this situation.

    All in all, lessons from “Everything I Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten”.

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  • […] there’s more than one way to park a bike. I don’t know what’s worse — that they put up speed bumps in a cemetery without warning cyclists, or that a few rude cyclists made it necessary. San Francisco police take […]

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  • 2ndAveFlyer September 24, 2009 at 11:45 pm

    This is an interesting collection of ideas and responses; I wish more had come from people who actually use this cemetery route. In our neighborhood the cemetery is like a nature preserve or a park and I would still ride through it if Taylor’s Ferry had an excellent bike lane. I have ridden through the cemetery for about 20 years and can report that I have never witnessed an act of rudeness or seen a bicycle accident. I don’t question that these occur, I’m just trying to provide a little perspective my my observations. I have also only witnessed about 15-20 funerals during that time. It’s not something that apparently takes place every hour of the day. I have ridden by funerals and not felt disrespectful. If people wish to ride or hike past my funeral they are welcome. This is a big cemetery; walking through would take longer than an entire commute to downtown Portland.

    It’s pointless to question the riding skills of the persons who have crashed thus far. When you are accustomed to a certain set of circumstances and those conditions suddenly change it is human nature to be at an increased risk for injury or accident. This is a common focal point for OSHA inspections and job-site safety.

    Yes; three cheers for Mr. Noble. A great many of us have been very thankful we could enjoy this resource so close to our homes. I would be interested in knowing what experience, knowledge, and training his greenskeepers had in constructing speed bumps and think this may have been a slip-up in prudent judgment. Perhaps through his own riding experience and discussions with users of the cemetery these safety issues can be resolved.

    Thank you Jonathan for providing an opportunity for many to learn about the bumps in print instead of practice.

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  • wsbob September 25, 2009 at 12:32 am

    “I would be interested in knowing what experience, knowledge, and training his greenskeepers had in constructing speed bumps and think this may have been a slip-up in prudent judgment.” 2ndAveFlyer

    That’s a very good point. It stands to reason there’s more to building a safe, effective speed bump than handing a guy some bags of asphalt and having him casually, without much thought, pile it on a line across the road. There’s lots of different kinds of speedbumps.

    Actually, in the general area, the ones on Palatine Hill Rd going by L&C are nasty in a motor vehicle. Haven’t ridden over them on a bike in a long while, so my recollection of them on that mode of transportation is hazy. I’ll bet though that they get the attention of people riding bikes over them. I would think that ones like them would serve well on the cemetery roads to get the message to people on bikes to slow down.

    Rosecityoak #118…wow!…offering up $100 for signs…that’s a way to get their attention. Glad you didn’t suffer any worse injuries and also, that you kept your cool with the maintenance worker after the fall.

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  • Karen September 25, 2009 at 5:04 am

    #123. Its not David Noble who walks every morning, its Lee Rogers. He is the guy out there at 5:30 am with the flashlight, Always has a smile and a good morning for you!

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  • rosecityoak September 25, 2009 at 8:36 am

    WSBOB (#127) – The speed bumps on PHR are no problem for bikers. Not only are they well marked, but they are gentle due to their wide profile.

    Those bumps got installed, because people were routinely bombing down PHR oblivious to the threat they posed to the pedestrians who cross between L&C Law School and the main campus. After a neighbor got hit by a car crossing the road, the neighborhood banded together and installed the bumps. They’ve been effective at mitigating speeding.

    With proper signage, Riverview should be able to achieve the same end without the bloodshed.

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  • bikieboy September 25, 2009 at 9:08 am

    All the speed bumps on city streets are designed to slow motor vehicles, and are, in theory at least, bicycle-safe. Which is to say, they don’t work to slow bicycles. The only bike-slowing devices i know of locally are the ones Parks installed on the short steep path connecting SE Milwaukie with Oaks Bottom and the Springwater trail. They’re more like rumble strips, and do not seem to be excessively punitive. Fairly well thought-out, unlike the Riverview bumps.

    I don’t know what a lawyer would say, but i really don’t buy the argument that some are making here that seems to be in essence “you (the bicyclist) are trespassing on my property, so now i’m entitled to kill you”.

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  • John Eric Lutz September 25, 2009 at 10:15 am

    The speed bumps in the cemetery are dangerous and need to be modified or removed. And the one near the maintenance building is still not well marked or visible in the dark.

    The cemetery is responsible for all injuries as the result of these “crash” bumps regardless of the fact they are on private property. I suggest anyone injured by them seek compensation now.

    How many more innocent cyclists will be injured before something is done to mitigate these unintended consequences? There are better ways to slow us down without hurting us in the process.

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  • Karl September 25, 2009 at 11:09 am

    What are the better way to slow us down John, the honor system? You don’t get it you are not suppose to be in the cemetery after dark anyway, and if you can’t see the bumps during the day… well you must be blind

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  • LC Bikers September 25, 2009 at 11:14 am

    Mr. Noble obviously is well within his rights and should be applauded for maintaining this wonderfully bike friendly route to campus. Communication regarding the speedbumps and his concerns in general could have and could be shared with the L&C community through the many avenues on campus. Email lists to students, the internal blog called the Source, etc. There are many ways that the College’s Public Affairs office could have and can assist Mr. Noble in getting the word out. The L&C bike club should be on top of this issue as well as the issue of donations. Since the L&C bike club has a vested interest in keeping the cemetery open to bikers, they should assist in communicating changes, rules, guidelines and maybe hold a few bake sales with the proceeds going to the cemetery (maybe to help buy things like signs).

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  • LC Bikers September 25, 2009 at 11:17 am

    John,

    There is no way that the owner would be liable for injuries incurred while trespassing on private property.

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  • LC Bikers September 25, 2009 at 11:22 am

    speed bumps don’t kill you. bikers riding too fast over speed bumps kill themselves.

    gone are the days of personal responsibility huh? Seems like everything that happens nowadays is someone else’s fault.

    What if’s?

    What if the cemetery was repaving? What if a whole section of road was gravel? What if there were construction signs but you didn’t see them because it was dark and you weren’t actually supposed to be on this road after dark? WHAT THEN? Who do you sue then? Or do you get up, pick the gravel out of your legs, and tell yourself gee, maybe I should have taken Taylor’s Ferry or Palatine Hill rd.?

    If you were speeding and hit a pinecone that made you crash would you sue the tree that dropped it in your path?

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  • John Eric Lutz September 25, 2009 at 11:24 am

    By safer I mean the speed bumps can be made lower so as to slow we cyclists without throwing us out of control.

    And at this time of year when I ride down the cemetery at 6:15 am, it is dark. And later in the year when I ride up 12 hours later, it will be dark as well.

    I can always drive my car but I cannot avoid the dark at these hours/time of year.

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  • John Eric Lutz September 25, 2009 at 11:29 am

    Cyclists, or pedestrians, or cars are not trespassing when on River View cemetery roads.

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  • LC Bikers September 25, 2009 at 11:29 am

    #110 nicely said

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  • LC Bikers September 25, 2009 at 11:35 am

    Trespassing as it relates to real estate law means entering onto land without consent of the landowner. The trespasser must not simply unwittingly traverse another’s land but must knowingly go onto the property without permission. Knowledge may be inferred when the owner tells the trespasser not to go on the land, when the land is fenced, or when a “no trespassing” sign in posted.

    By stating that the cemetery is open from 8 am to dusk the owner is telling you not to go on his land after dusk, if you do, you are knowingly going onto his property without permission.

    How is that NOT trespassing?

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  • John Eric Lutz September 25, 2009 at 11:37 am

    The owners of River View cemetery are liable for all injuries sustained by cyclists for installing dangerously high speed bumps, not having adequate signage warning cyclists, and not painting them in a timely manner. All of this represents a gross disregard for the safety of the cyclists.

    The fact that River View cemetery is on private property, or is a non profit organization, is no defense what so ever.

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  • LC Bikers September 25, 2009 at 12:14 pm

    While a lawyer may have a case based on the landowner giving bikers a “permanent easement” because of their repeated access over the years, I still don’t think he would be held liable.

    Bikers must obey the posted speed limit.

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  • Dave September 25, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    You sure are geting worked up over this. Getting bored at work? The whole who is liable thing and “let’s sue” is just a little over-kill. What happened to the civility of it all? It would be more helpful and productive to focus on solutions, not finger pointing and insulting each other.

    I do like riding through the cemetery and would like to continue doing so.

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  • cyclist September 25, 2009 at 12:40 pm

    John Eric Lutz: Then go ahead and sue him! Please! Take him straight to court and teach him a lesson about trying to slow you down. And when the cemetery closes to bike traffic, remind yourself that you were right and they were wrong while you’re driving down Taylors Ferry.

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  • John Eric Lutz September 25, 2009 at 1:32 pm

    It’s not “over-kill” or lack of civility to consider compensation if you crashed on one of those speed bumps and fractured your clavicle and cannot work.

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  • John Eric Lutz September 25, 2009 at 1:36 pm

    I do not have to sue and in fact cannot. I have not been injured altho I came close to crashing the morning after the speed bumps were placed and not painted. Had I been injured last week and could not work a suit would already be filed.

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  • Karl September 25, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    Its really pretty simple, if you don’t like the speed bumps, stay out of the cemetery, they are not going to go away!

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  • Matt Picio September 25, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    wsbob (#127) – The ones by L&C aren’t too bad on a bike, though it’s been a year since I’ve been up in that specific location, so my memory could be fuzzy.

    bikieboy (#130) – That’s kind of a fallacious argument you’re making – how exactly is the cemetary trying to kill cyclists? The mere presence of the bumps doesn’t make it a lethal situation. Yes, it would be nice to have signs, or something to warn people before the paint was laid, and it would be nice to have something a bit more rounded than what’s there, but they’re not inherently lethal in and of themselves.

    John Eric Lutz (various) – The owners of Riverview cemetary are only liable for injuries sustained by people who are lawfully on their property, for which I’m sure they have general liability insurance. Once they close the gates, entry is no longer lawful, and while they may decide not to prosectue offenders, said offenders may have a hard time proving in court that they were not trespassing.

    And I’d hesitate to say “gross disregard” – I doubt they wilfully set out to not warn people of the bumps, or the bumps wouldn’t have been painted at all. “unintentional negligence” would probably be more appropriate.

    Do you ride that route, John? It feels to me like this is a personal affront to you.

    I know someone who was injured during a crash riding over these bumps – he sits on a county bike/ped committee, and I hope he heals quickly. He is a confident, competent rider with good attention and bike-handling skills. He may have just been unlucky, but given what I know about his riding and Katelyn’s, I have to say that I agree with previous commentors that these bumps may be a bit too sharp for bicycles. I really appreciate the fact that Mr. Noble and the organization he represents have allowed us continued access (I use this route 6-7 times a year). He has frequently worked with the community, and I hope that he’ll decide to continue to do so. I also hope that he will seriously look at changing the design of the bumps a bit to strike a better balance between safety and speed reduction.

    I also hope that those in the community who are the problem people that inspired these measures will stop screwing things up for the rest of us and behave. Riverview could easily close off the lower gate and access road, cutting off a good alternate route to and from the Sellwood Bridge. With freedom comes responsibility – and if we ignore our responsibilities, people will act to remove our freedoms.

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  • wsbob September 25, 2009 at 3:35 pm

    “Actually, in the general area, the ones on Palatine Hill Rd going by L&C are nasty in a motor vehicle. Haven’t ridden over them on a bike in a long while, so my recollection of them on that mode of transportation is hazy. I’ll bet though that they get the attention of people riding bikes over them.” wsbob #127

    rosecityoak…what I meant to say, is that those speedbumps are nasty…annoying to cross over in a car, despite that, I thoroughly support their being there. I’m still wondering a bit though…whether those type speed bumps would be able to do the job Riverview executive director David Noble needs speed bumps to do for the cemetery roads.

    Do you guys keep your eyes on the bikeportland main page twitter updates? A notice there right now, posted an hour ago:

    “Sad news. Local riding legend Del Scharffenberg broke his collarbone and shoulder blade on the Riverview Cemetery speed bumps Tuesday night.” maus/bikeportland-twitter

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  • steve September 25, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    I went up and rode through this afternoon. Slowed to 10mph and went right over the bumps.

    It seems people are complaining that these are not like the other bumps around town that bikes can take at, or near full speed. I agree, they are different.

    It makes sense that they are different, as we are not supposed to be able to cross over them at, or near speed. They are speed bumps that appear to have been designed/implemented/engineered to force bikes to slow down.

    Being as they were installed in direct response to speeding/fast cyclists, this design of course makes perfect sense.

    All the complaints sound as if you are critiquing the bumps for doing exactly what they are supposed to do- Force cyclists to slow down.

    Having ridden these, I can attest that they are perfectly safe, so long as you slow down. Which of course, is the point!

    If they were lower or had a gentle slope leading to them, they would not be effective- They would be pointless.

    Sort of like your complaints.

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  • Roma September 25, 2009 at 6:13 pm

    …they’d seen another woman crash on the bumps and brake her collarbone that same morning.

    Grammar Nazi says: *cringe*

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  • Roma September 25, 2009 at 6:22 pm

    I totally agree that Mr. Noble was well within his rights to install these, and judging from the experiences he shared about rude cyclists, I think it was a good idea.

    I also think some kind of initial sign or warning would have been nice just to let people know they were going to be there. When you ride the same route for years, you think you know the roads pretty well. The last thing you’re going to be expecting is a brand new cyclist oriented speed bump to throw you off your bike.

    Was Mr. Noble required to give such a warning? Of course not – but it would have been nice for the people who ride through there on a regular basis.

    I also agree with others that unfortunately these aren’t going to slow fast riders down. A simple bunny hop can clear these thing with no loss in speed.

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  • John Eric Lutz September 25, 2009 at 6:27 pm

    “Sad news. Local riding legend Del Scharffenberg broke his collarbone and shoulder blade on the Riverview Cemetery speed bumps Tuesday night.”

    No doubt the owners of the cemetery did not put these speed bumps there to hurt people, but more than a few have been hurt by them. That said, the owners are negligent for continuing to not put up signs to warn cyclists, and not reducing the height of the bumps regardless. The continued injuries speak for themselves. How many more need suffer before the cemetery owners take remedial action?

    I have lived near Lewis and Clark College for over 23 years. I ride thru the cemetery to and from my office in Clackamas most mornings. How many rides does that make in 23+ year? Thousands. I have never had a problem riding thru the cemetery, or the Sellwood bridge, or the Spring Water Corridor, or the I 205 bike path until last Tuesday morning. I was totally flummoxed when I hit something going down the road just before the maintenance building. It was all I could do to stay in control and not crash. I am probably a better bike handler than most; I ride cyclo cross in the fall. I suspect this is what saved my bacon.

    I could not understand what I hit. At first I thought it was a trench line for water or power that had not yet settled. But there is nothing on either side of the road to warrant such a line. It was not til I got to the bottom that I hit another unmarked bump, this time at a much slower speed as I was approaching the closed gate. I thought to myself “How could anyone put such a nasty bump like this in the road with no warning at all; no paint, no sign, no anything?” I thought surely people are going to get hurt.

    On my way home that evening I yelled at a number of cyclists coming down hill to be aware of the speed bumps. Some were in disbelief. Some still are (see above).

    I assert that the continued injury of cyclists by these speed bumps is unconscionable on the part of the cemetery owners. These injuries represent negligence on their part. Something must be done to correct this issue and soon, less others like Del Scharffenberg are injured. Those injured should consult with plaintiffs attorneys now. I suspect a suit is the only way to get the attention of the people responsible for this situation.

    I feel fortunate to have escaped injury. Others obviously have not been. If the cemetery owners will not listen to common sense perhaps the lawyers can explain the facts of life to them.

    Someone pledged $100 to put up a sign to warn cyclists of the danger of these bumps. I will match that $100. I suspect $200 will buy a nice big sign saying “Warning: SPEED BUMP”- with a large arrow pointing to it well before a cyclist is upon it and it is too late.

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  • steve September 25, 2009 at 6:44 pm

    If you can’t see a large, yellow speedbump in the middle of the road, why would you see a large sign off to the side?

    I hope you are a better doctor than lawyer, Mr. Lutz. You clearly have no idea what you are talking about in regards to ‘negligence’.

    You also speak of ‘common sense’ and ‘facts of life’. Common sense is not running into things that will make you fall over. The facts of life are that if you are not aware of your surroundings, you may be hurt. Perhaps a lawyer can explain that to you? My mom taught me all by herself..

    I hope no one makes the mistake of bringing suit over these. You will likely lose your case, as well as force the closure of this route.

    Personal responsibility here folks. Grow up and take responsibility for your actions.

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  • S. Smith September 25, 2009 at 9:04 pm

    At 6:15am today my husband hit one of these speed bumps while commuting to work. He was going slower than usual since it was still dark but it still did major damage.

    He has 5 broken ribs, a broken clavicle and broken scapula.

    He had ridden through the cemetery a number of times prior to the speed bumps and just didn’t expect them to be there. This was, ironically, his “safer” route.

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  • SteveD September 25, 2009 at 9:20 pm

    If you opened your front door on your way to work one day and suddenly found yourself on the ground injured and bleeding because someone removed the front step without warning, wouldn’t you be upset?

    Some of you sound like we’re just whining about having to slow down. Having speed bumps is okay; it’s how they were designed and implemented that is the issue.

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  • Cecil September 25, 2009 at 9:43 pm

    A little light reading for those folks that are threatening to call their lawyers. I apologize for the formatting, it’s a sloppy cut and paste from my electronic version of the Oregon Revised Statutes –
    of these, the one that you may want to pay particular attention to is ORS 105.682.

    PUBLIC USE OF LANDS

    ORS 105.672 Definitions for ORS 105.672 to 105.696.

    As used in ORS 105.672 to 105.696:

    (1) “Charge”:

    (a) Means the admission price or fee requested or expected by an owner in return for granting permission for a person to enter or go upon the owner’s land.

    (b) Does not mean any amount received from a public body in return for granting permission for the public to enter or go upon the owner’s land.

    (2) “Harvest” has that meaning given in ORS 164.813.

    (3) “Land” includes all real property, whether publicly or privately owned.

    (4) “Owner” means the possessor of any interest in any land, including but not limited to possession of a fee title. “Owner” includes a tenant, lessee, occupant or other person in possession of the land.

    (5) “Recreational purposes” includes, but is not limited to, outdoor activities such as hunting, fishing, swimming, boating, camping, picnicking, hiking, nature study, outdoor educational activities, waterskiing, winter sports, viewing or enjoying historical, archaeological, scenic or scientific sites or volunteering for any public purpose project.

    (6) “Special forest products” has that meaning given in ORS 164.813.

    (7) “Woodcutting” means the cutting or removal of wood from land by an individual who has obtained permission from the owner of the land to cut or remove wood.

    ORS 105.676 Public policy.

    The Legislative Assembly hereby declares it is the public policy of the State of Oregon to encourage owners of land to make their land available to the public for recreational purposes, for woodcutting and for the harvest of special forest products by limiting their liability toward persons entering thereon for such purposes and by protecting their interests in their land from the extinguishment of any such interest or the acquisition by the public of any right to use or continue the use of such land for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products. [1995 c.456 §2]

    ORS 105.682 Liabilities of owner of land used by public for recreational purposes, woodcutting or harvest of special forest products.

    (1) Except as provided by subsection (2) of this section, and subject to the provisions of ORS 105.688, an owner of land is not liable in contract or tort for any personal injury, death or property damage that arises out of the use of the land for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products when the owner of land either directly or indirectly permits any person to use the land for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products. The limitation on liability provided by this section applies if the principal purpose for entry upon the land is for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products, and is not affected if the injury, death or damage occurs while the person entering land is engaging in activities other than the use of the land for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products.

    (2) This section does not limit the liability of an owner of land for intentional injury or damage to a person coming onto land for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products.

    ORS 105.688 Applicability of immunities from liability for owner of land; restrictions.

    (1) Except as specifically provided in ORS 105.672 to 105.696, the immunities provided by ORS 105.682 apply to:

    (a) All public and private lands, including but not limited to lands adjacent or contiguous to any bodies of water, watercourses or the ocean shore as defined by ORS 390.605;

    (b) All roads, bodies of water, watercourses, rights of way, buildings, fixtures and structures on the lands described in paragraph (a) of this subsection; and

    (c) All machinery or equipment on the lands described in paragraph (a) of this subsection.

    (2) The immunities provided by ORS 105.682 apply only if:

    (a) The owner makes no charge for permission to use the land;

    (b) The owner transfers an easement to a public body to use the land; or

    (c) The owner charges no more than $75 per cord for permission to use the land for woodcutting.

    105.692 No right to continued use of land if owner of land permits use of land; no presumption of dedication or other rights.

    (1) An owner of land who either directly or indirectly permits any person to use the land for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products does not give that person or any other person a right to continued use of the land for those purposes without the consent of the owner.

    (2) The fact that an owner of land allows the public to use the land for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products without posting, fencing or otherwise restricting use of the land does not raise a presumption that the landowner intended to dedicate or otherwise give over to the public the right to continued use of the land.

    (3) Nothing in this section shall be construed to diminish or divert any public right to use land for recreational purposes acquired by dedication, prescription, grant, custom or otherwise existing before October 5, 1973.

    (4) Nothing in this section shall be construed to diminish or divert any public right to use land for woodcutting acquired by dedication, prescription, grant, custom or otherwise existing before October 3, 1979. [1995 c.456 §5]

    105.696 No duty of care or liability created; exercise of care still required of person using land.

    ORS 105.672 to 105.696 do not:

    (1) Create a duty of care or basis for liability for personal injury, death or property damage resulting from the use of land for recreational purposes, for woodcutting or for the harvest of special forest products.

    (2) Relieve a person using the land of another for recreational purposes, woodcutting or the harvest of special forest products from any obligation that the person has to exercise care in use of the land in the activities of the person or from the legal consequences of failure of the person to exercise that care. [1995 c.456 §6]

    105.700 Prohibiting public access to private land; notice requirements; damages.

    (1) In addition to and not in lieu of any other damages that may be claimed, a plaintiff who is a landowner shall receive liquidated damages in an amount not to exceed $1,000 in any action in which the plaintiff establishes that:

    (a) The plaintiff closed the land of the plaintiff as provided in subsection (2) of this section; and

    (b) The defendant entered and remained upon the land of the plaintiff without the permission of the plaintiff.

    (2) A landowner or an agent of the landowner may close the privately owned land of the landowner by posting notice as follows:

    (a) For land through which the public has no right of way, the landowner or agent must place a notice at each outer gate and normal point of access to the land, including both sides of a body of water that crosses the land wherever the body of water intersects an outer boundary line. The notice must be placed on a post, structure or natural object in the form of a sign or a blaze of paint. If a blaze of paint is used, it must consist of at least 50 square inches of fluorescent orange paint, except that when metal fence posts are used, approximately the top six inches of the fence post must be painted. If a sign is used, the sign:

    (A) Must be no smaller than eight inches in height and 11 inches in width;

    (B) Must contain the words “Closed to Entry” or words to that effect in letters no less than one inch in height; and

    (C) Must display the name, business address and phone number, if any, of the landowner or agent of the landowner.

    (b) For land through which or along which the public has an unfenced right of way by means of a public road, the landowner or agent must place:

    (A) A conspicuous sign no closer than 30 feet from the center line of the roadway where it enters the land, containing words substantially similar to “PRIVATE PROPERTY, NO TRESPASSING OFF ROAD NEXT _____ MILES”; or

    (B) A sign or blaze of paint, as described in paragraph (a) of this subsection, no closer than 30 feet from the center line of the roadway at regular intervals of not less than one-fourth mile along the roadway where it borders the land, except that a blaze of paint may not be placed on posts where the public road enters the land.

    (3) Nothing contained in this section prevents emergency or law enforcement vehicles from entering upon the posted land.

    (4) An award of liquidated damages under this section is not subject to ORS 31.725, 31.730 or 31.735.

    (5) Nothing in this section affects any other remedy, civil or criminal, that may be available for a trespass described in this section. [1999 c.933 §1]

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  • jim September 25, 2009 at 10:54 pm

    Its a cemetary- Who would want to see a bunch of traffic signs in a place of rest? its not like its the parking lot at walmart. it would be unsightly.

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  • Roma September 25, 2009 at 11:25 pm

    Who’s talking about “a bunch of traffic signs”? Signs placed at the entrances warning cyclists that there are new road hazards would be sufficient. I don’t think that’s unreasonable either since it is a known, popular and encouraged route for cyclists. If you were riding the Springwater and hit a new speed bump and crashed, you might be a little pissed too.

    I’ve heard of four crashes so far where people broke bones. Do you think the land owner wanted that to happen? Me either; so maybe he should have implemented his idea a little differently…

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  • John Eric Lutz September 26, 2009 at 7:26 am

    Sorry to hear about your husbands’ unnecessary injuries. Ray Thomas, of Swanson, Thomas, & Coon, is a cyclist/ attorney and has represented many cyclists in the community. He writes article about the rights (yes, cyclists do have rights) as well as the obligations of cyclists to obey signals, etc.

    He can be reached at: 503-228-5222. And if you need assistance I, too, hit that bump at 6:15 am and nearly crashed. It is way too dangerous.

    And for those of you out there who think these postings are just diatribes, get on your bike and ride down the cemetery from the top, south gate towards the maintenance building on your bike and experience this “crash” bump for yourself. Without personally experiencing this thing you have no standing.

    And this is the supposed “safe” route down the hill?

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  • Vance Longwell September 26, 2009 at 9:07 am

    Hi, best wishes to Ms. Hale here. Regardless of my comment I hope that it’s understood she has my full sympathy.

    This statement is true.

    “I assert that the continued injury of cyclists by these speed bumps is unconscionable on the part of the cemetery owners.”

    This statement is false.

    “These injuries represent negligence on their part.”

    I’ve avoided commenting on this one because Ms. Hale was injured. Alas, the topic has been breached and then some. I’m a bit appalled to learn that this cemetery is getting actual bike traffic. Show some respect. Lacking a road you like is a weak excuse to use private property, and no excuse at all when something then goes wrong.

    Lutz, I don’t know man. I can’t see how you feel people are civilly entitled here. And Mr. Noble, you should be ashamed of yourself. You’ve used horrible judgment from start to finish here.

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  • Bret September 26, 2009 at 10:03 am

    I am so damn sick of the few dumbasses that ruin it for us responsible cyclists. Those dumbasses are also the ones that whine the loudest. We need to police ourselves, let those people that don’t follow the rules know that they need to behave. Stop bitching and follow the rules, then non-cyclists won’t have any reason to hate us.

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  • Weybikeboy September 26, 2009 at 1:33 pm

    I commute through Riverview almost every day. I stop and talk with Lee. I pet the cat at the office. I greet other staff members. I know several commenters personally and have probably seen many others. I know crash victim Del and I met another this morning — Be well soon. I have developed some close acquaintances with fellow cemetery riders over the years. Riding the cemetery is one of my favorite times of my day and testament to the Portland cycling community. I really hope the privilege isn’t revoked. Please be safe and respectful and encourage others.

    Vance, I honestly believe that my quiet passage through the cemetery is an appropriate way for me to reflect and to pay my repects to those interred there. I think the management generally agrees. I agree that riding across the grass is bad manners. I see several easy solutions.

    John, your enthusiasm for suing leaves me feeling slightly ill. I will take my own responsibility to avoid speed bumps, chestnuts, down branches, ice, leaves, deer, squirrels, maintenance workers, and funeral processions wherever and whenever they occur. I am hopeful that tactful outreach — not the threat of lawsuits — will resolve the issues with access and safety.

    David Noble, thank you for maintaining access. Please don’t revoke the privilege. I will contribute money, join a work party, admonish speeding cyclists, and work with the city and BTA to develop solutions.

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  • She September 26, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    I would be curious to see a injury tally with categorizing minor and major injuries. Those that are minor would be the scrapes and bruises and those that are major would be ones that need specialized medical care (broken bones, separations, etc).

    I wish these bumps had been thought through with signs and then as soon as they went have them painted.

    I know Del and he is a very responsible bike rider and quite skilled. I was very sad to hear of his injuries.

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  • Cecil September 26, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    Weybikeboy’s post (#162) reads as if I could have written it – I ride up the hill through the cemetery every morning at 5:50 AM. I meet Lee as he does his rounds, and we chat about many things, including the cemetery management’s desire to make the cemetery a welcoming refuge for cyclists from the hell that is Taylor’s Ferry, but also about the pressure the cemetery management is under from plot owners and mourners to ban cyclists entirely because of the actions of a small bout sadly visible percentage of riders who show no respect for anyone else, living or dead.

    Would I have liked to see more notice of the speed bump installation? Sure. Could they have been designed in a way to make them less hazardous? Probably. Was the cemetery management fully within their rights to install the speed bumps? Yep. I am just happy that they haven’t banned us. Of course, the more people talk about lawsuits, the more likely it is that they will decide to ban us. Just sayin.

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  • Scooter September 26, 2009 at 4:20 pm

    Mr. Noble, post 10MPH signs at all entrances to the cemetery. Then if Mr. Lutz DDS (who is on record as riding the route at 20+) and others crash on private property they are arguably negligent.

    Folks, it isn’t a freeway. The nature of this particular private property calls for some respect.

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  • Opus the Poet September 26, 2009 at 5:18 pm

    OK I think what some people are missing here is private property or not, had the owners installed devices to slow down motor vehicle traffic that caused those vehicles to crash when hit at what had been the normal cruise speed for the area with physical injury, without prior warning, then the lawyers would still be plastering the owners with lawsuits for the next 2 or 3 years. These devices have caused by the count I have from the comments at least 3 and maybe 4 or 5 personal injury wrecks for bicycles including at least 2 with no warning at all, not even paint.

    If this had happened to people driving cars, even just to damage the car with no personal injury, the cemetery would have had to shut down because of the lawsuits. Why should the fact that it happened to bicycles instead of cars make any difference?

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  • Aka September 26, 2009 at 5:59 pm

    I think closing this path is better than trying to hurt cyclist. How many accidents actually happened in this area in the last 3 years due to cyclist speeding vs the one cause by the speed bumps…

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  • John Eric Lutz September 26, 2009 at 7:41 pm

    “Lutz, I don’t know man. I can’t see how you feel people are civilly entitled here.” I never said they were.

    “And Mr. Noble, you should be ashamed of yourself. You’ve used horrible judgment from start to finish here.” I agree.

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  • John Eric Lutz September 26, 2009 at 7:59 pm

    “If this had happened to people driving cars, even just to damage the car with no personal injury, the cemetery would have had to shut down because of the lawsuits. Why should the fact that it happened to bicycles instead of cars make any difference?”

    Why? Because cyclists get no respect. From anyone.

    I assert the only way to get the cemetery to stop these unnecessary injuries is thru the legal system. They are obviously deaf to the issue of personal injury. They cannot hide behind the “private property” ruse.

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  • Patient September 26, 2009 at 11:30 pm

    Dr. Krump (aka John Eric Lutz), isn’t it ironic for a doctor to encourage more personal injury lawsuits? Aren’t you guys usually trying to reign in the lawyers? I hope that Mr. Noble is reading these posts and closes the cemetery to bicyclists before your 6:15am Monday commute. Enjoy your ride home up Taylors Ferry! Seriously, I predict this confrontation will lead to closure in the next 6 months.

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  • Q`ztal September 27, 2009 at 12:09 am

    Dear David Noble:

    Close your property to through traffic now to both bicycle and automobile traffic.
    Install gates, install fences; it will cost less than one unsuccessful suit against you.
    If you still desire to reopen this route to cyclists then you need to consult legal advice on how to insulate your organization from suits of this nature.
    From the above post 156 ORS 105.682 (Liabilities of owner of land used by public for recreational purposes, woodcutting or harvest of special forest products) we see that in all likelyhood you have minimal legal exposure.
    You do not have a legal requirement to put up signs warning for these speed bumps or any future road hazards. There is, however, an ethical obligation to protect the public from the consequences of your actions.

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  • John Eric Lutz September 27, 2009 at 9:08 am

    Let me see if I can understand this:

    David Noble has …”an ethical obligation to protect the public from the consequences of your actions.”

    But: “You do not have a legal requirement to put up signs warning for these speed bumps or any future road hazards.”

    Because “…you have minimal legal exposure.”

    Good grief!

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  • wsbob September 27, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    Reading the Oregon statute Cecil posted, ‘minimal legal exposure’ was the concession that Oregon law made to encourage property owners like Riverview to keep their property open to the public for certain purposes.

    Riverview has done as state law encouraged it to do. Did Riverview install the speed bumps it did to intentionally cause people riding bikes on cemetery roads to fall and injure themselves? The answer seems to be ‘No’. It installed them to simply get people on bikes to slow down.

    Are there specific regulatory guidelines for the design, installation and signing of speed bumps that Riverview failed to follow in the construction of its own speed bumps? I don’t know. Someone might want to check into that.

    Riverview’s installation of the speed bumps seems to have simply been a last gasp, exasperated effort to slow down speeding people on bikes before finding itself having to block them from cemetery roads entirely.

    Sounds as though the cemetery just used its in-house staff to build the speed bumps. They probably should have hired an expensive outside contractor to design and build them. In the wonderful world of ‘Suit-Suit-Suit…!’, they then could have went after that company for injuries incurred. Even as is, they’ve had to draw form the cemetery’s budget to spend money on labor and materials to build the speed bumps.

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  • steve September 27, 2009 at 1:28 pm

    The huge yellow stripes on the road aren’t enough for you Dr. Lutz?

    I have ridden over these bumps and the only person negligent in the event of a fall would clearly be the rider. A first year law student would have no difficulty defending the cemetery against any of the unaware and speeding cyclists who have fallen.

    I would advise any of you irresponsible, litigious sorts to review some fun terms. Contributory Negligence would be a fine place to start. Standards of Due Care would be a delightful follow up. Trespassing and Unlawful Entry would be perfect terms for you folks cutting around the closed gates during the early or late hours to study up on.

    Good luck getting Ray Thomas to advocate for you, Dr. Lutz! Thomas appears to be a man looking out for cyclists rights, not a person coddling irresponsible sorts who wish to contribute to the closure of popular cycling routes owing to their selfishness and lack of responsibility.

    Let’s all try to remember the delightful days when people actually took responsibility for their actions instead of blaming everyone else.

    All that is necessary to not fall off your bike is to pay attention. Something Mr. Lutz and others appear incapable of doing. Thank god they are not in cars!

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  • Q`ztal September 27, 2009 at 2:45 pm

    Well John, lets drag this conversation further down…

    There is a lot of common law precedent to support the “I’ll do what I want on my own property” opinion. Some would say that was what America was founded on. The freedom to make our own decisions, however we want, without the influence of others.

    Here is a situation where a private land owner has chosen to allow public access to property and is protected by ORS 105.682 against injuries that occur on said property much as Good Samaritan laws protect the public from unintentional harm in helping another.
    These roads through the cemetery were opened to public access in a spirit of community and sharing. Due to a lack of sharing, on account of rude and dangerous users, the land owner modified their own property to increase safety and restore the balance of sharing.
    There is no reason to believe that David Noble’s installation of speed bumps on his own property, in and of itself, is in any way illegal.
    However, as part of a larger community, we are aware that our actions have effects on others. Sometimes these effects are unintended, sometimes also they are harmful. As a community, as a society we can no longer afford to believe that our actions, our decisions occur in a vacuum.

    While I believe that the law protects David Noble and Riverview Cemetery as private land owners I also believe that opening the cemetery to public traffic to begin with was the bad decision. Not only did this make Riverview Cemetery resposible for management of traffic (with no appropriate “roadway engineering” training) but it effectively relieved ODOT and PBOT of their obligation to provide a safe public right of way for cyclists who obviously have to commute through this region.

    So here we are.
    Were the cyclists wrong: yes.
    Was David Noble’s decision wrong: yes.
    The only solution that resolves all the above problems is to close the cemetery to all funeral related traffic.

    I hope he does not.

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  • john September 27, 2009 at 4:21 pm

    I think it is great that the cemetary is open as it is a great place to ride. Between the springwater trail and the cemetary it makes it possible for people like myself to get downtown from the SW suburbs with out having to put ourselves at massive risk on Barbur or 43.

    I also agree that rude behavior shouldn’t be tolerated and can understand Mr. Noble’s frustration. I also appreciate the use of the area as it is not my right but a privelage that I treat with respect and appreciate.

    That being said…use your head Mr. Noble. If retaliation is your goal why not just sit in a lawn chair and shoot riders at random with a bb gun. These speedbumps are more like curbs. To not post a sign at the top or paint them seems or have some advanced warning OR ALL OF THESE is as if you are trying to crash some people to send a message. I don’t ride to fast through the cemetary and didn’t deserve to go down hard last week. I have 2 very small kids who would like to keep their father around and putting people in a situation that could be life threatening is irresponsible especially if it is intentionally done out of frustration and retaliation. I don’t think it is OK form my 4 year old to hit her sister when she pulls her hair and I don’t think it is OK to do something that seems obviously intentional because there have been a couple rude people.

    I was riding down at a very moderate pace. How fast is too fast anyway. 10..15…20. Let us know so we can gauge. Anyway…I was sitting up and breaking slightly. I was facing forward and paying attention but when the bump is on a corner with warning lines 5 feet ahead and no warning sign it is flat out unreasonable to think that people wouldn’t get hurt. My warning of the speed bump was realized mid air 5 feet after the bump. I am lucky I didn’t break anything but regardless still don’t care to have my body road rashed from my wrist to armpit and hip to ankle. Not to mention a front rim out of true, broker shifter, torn jersy, undershit, and shorts.

    Next time try a dialogue to help the innocent bikers help you with your problem since I think we can all agree that cemetary personal and bicyclists both can’t stand the rude bikers.

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  • old&slow September 27, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    This is getting hilarious, I posted at about 30 after Lutz’s first post and called him out for being a whiny bitch and the post was deleted by bikeportland. Maybe this one will be also but DR. LUTZ is going to get the cemetary closed to cyclists because he is too incompetent to ride over a speed bump. I rode it today, I would take a child over it. 175 posts because this guy can’t ride a bike!

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  • Cecil September 27, 2009 at 4:28 pm

    Q’tzal said: “The only solution that resolves all the above problems is to close the cemetery to all funeral related traffic.”

    I am guessing you mean ” all non-funeral traffic” or “all but funeral traffic” here.

    Although I disagree with you that opening the cemetery to public traffic was a bad decision, I do think that the other points you have made are well-taken. I would not be surprised if they decide to close the cemetery roads to all but cemetery-related business (not just funeral processions, but grave visits, etc.) I would be disappointed, but not surprised.

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  • Lester September 27, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    I’d be happy to tutor anyone how to safely ride over these speed bumps at 10 mph on a road, mountain, cross or hybrid bike.

    Unfortunately I have limited ‘bent experience. I’d think that would be the worst bike type to get over these bumps on.

    If enough interest is shown, perhaps an advanced two-week bunnyhop class may be offered also. This technique can be employed to bomb that hill at 30mph, no problemo.

    😉

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  • rosecityoak September 27, 2009 at 9:46 pm

    John, let’s cut the talk of litigation.

    Trust me, I am pretty upset that I got taken out by the speed bump near the maintenance building. Like you, I commute to Clackamas from SW Portland and thus had no inkling that the bumps were in place until it was too late.

    I’ve already paid a visit to a doctor, a chiropractor, and masseuse, and I am still experiencing intense back pain. This incident has quashed my desire to commute by bike to work ever again.

    However, I can’t imagine what litigation would solve. Why can’t we as a collective biking community partner up with the Cemetary and solve the problem in a mutually workable fashion. Let’s knock off the recriminations and snarky comments and solve the problem.

    I’m signing off at this point. Sitting at the keyboard just aggravates my back pain.

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  • wsbob September 27, 2009 at 10:44 pm

    rosecityoak….don’t give up hope of healing and being in the mood to ride to work again. I hope your doc had encouraging words for you.

    I have some difficulty understanding how this particular problem with speedbumps could have come about. I suppose I naturally assume that, because the cemetery is so huge, it also must have a huge budget. Maybe it doesn’t, and management believes it has to cut corners to save money. Or maybe they thought their staff knew everything their was to know about building speed bumps that would communicate the need for people on bikes to slow down without vaulting them over the handlebars the first time they rode over them.

    I’ve also wondered if a rep from Riverview attends meetings of their neighborhood association. If so, that would have been one place cemetery staff could have appealed to for help, advice, and spreading the word about the speed bumps it eventually felt compelled to install.

    It’s all very unfortunate. People can certainly try sue. They may not win. At any rate, once that approach starts, watch the money start flying out the window at whatever the going rate for lawyers is.

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  • Q`ztal September 27, 2009 at 11:03 pm

    Cecil #178
    Thanks for catching what is one of many typos in my post, shouldn’t post while cooking:)

    By itself, the decision to open the cemetery to bikes was good. However it inevitably lead to a series of events that comes back to the closure of the cemetery to bike traffic.

    Path opens,
    bikes use it,
    some abuse it,
    attempts at education,
    continued abuse,
    attempts at mitigation of problems,
    continued abuse,
    path closes.

    I keep thinking that if residential neighborhoods were allowed to close down access roads to choke off dangerous through traffic it would have been done ages ago. They are public streets and luckily a neighborhood can simply shut down a street on their own. David Noble does not have this limitation.

    Any amount of fencing, barricades and signs needed to totally block bicycle traffic will pale in cost to the money lost in defending a lawsuit against him that fails.
    And this is why this route will close: money.
    The mere mention of potential lawsuits should be driving up his liability premiums as we speak. Even if he never loses a lawsuit against him it will be a continuous cash flow drain that he can ill afford in a time when funeral costs are going up, personal incomes are going down and more people are opting for cremation.

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  • Brooke September 28, 2009 at 11:24 am

    I’m still confused; is there a better way to get out of the cemetery at the top when the gate is closed? It seems like even walking over gravestones is probably considered rude/inappropriate for those who consider cemeteries and gravestones sacred. I’d like to have as little impact as possible when trying to exit. Maybe a pedestrian/bike gate would be warranted.

    I’m happy that Mr. Noble is willing to keep the roads in the cemetery open to cyclists. I’d love to be part of a cyclist/cemetery discussion group to determine the best way for all of us to get along. I think it is my favorite place to ride in Portland. I still smile every time I pass the “Wheeless” gravestone near the top.

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  • bobcycle September 29, 2009 at 9:37 am

    Maybe PDOT can learn from this. Design auto speed bumps so that cars that exceed posted speed crash and injure occupants? Maybe the problem is speeding cyclists but when the solution becomes a problem it is not a very good solution. Although if the intention was to injure “speeding” cyclists maybe it is working as designed.

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  • Dave September 29, 2009 at 10:40 am

    OK, I tried to do the “right” thing yesterday by riding the only true and public alternative route to that area.

    I rode up and down Taylors Ferry Rd. The street is not wide enough to have a car and bike go at the same time down, so I rode in the middle of the lane. I think there were about 40 cars behind me and I’m sure none of them were happy with me.

    I then went up it on my evening commute home and this was even worst. Traffic does about 45mph going up Taylors Ferry normally and I was certainly adding a kink to that. I took up my whole lane as this also does not allow for a bike and vehicle at the same time. Besides almost being hit 5 times (or maybe run over by irate motorists), it took me about 15-20 minutes to ride to the top. I certainly caused a traffic issue and pissed off a lot of motorists, sorry guys.

    I’m not sure about being “entitled” to take up the whole rode, but it sounds like my legal obligation to do so under Oregon Law:
    “When riding your bike on a road, you have the same rights and duties as other road users. With a few exceptions, the rules of the road for drivers apply to you.” and “If there is no shoulder or bike lane, and the travel lane is narrow, ride closer to the center of the lane. This will prevent motorists from passing you when there isn’t room. you should also take the lane when you’re traveling at the same speed as traffic. This will keep you out of motorists’ blind spots and reduce conflicts with right-turning traffic.”

    This is fine and dandy, but tell that to the long line of cars behind me as I petal up that huge hill and delay them by 20 minutes. It might be my legal obligation under the law, but I’m not going to risk my life as some angry motorist decides they’ve had enough and mow me down. If they do close the cemetery to bike traffic than the 100-200 bicyclists that use it will have to use Taylors Ferry. Maybe we should all just start doing it and see how long that lasts? Can you imagine 200 bike commuters having to take that Taylors Ferry every day? That would pretty much close it down to normal traffic. I appreciate Mr. Noble and his efforts and leaving the cemetery open for now, but at this point it might be time for the City of Portland to provide a workable solution.

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  • PH_97202 September 29, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    Add me to the list of nasty wipe-outs on these speedbumps. This happened Sunday, late afternoon: I had never ridden through the cemetery before. I was descending at ca. 25 mph (I had been riding around in the cemetery for about 45 minutes and had not seen a single other person). I was looking through a turn, coming up on the parking lot of the main office area (I think) and never even saw the bump. It appears that my injuries are all superficial. Minor damage to the bike.

    Be careful!

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  • Kt September 30, 2009 at 2:14 pm

    I’m reading all these comments from people who have encountered these bumps and crashed because of them, on one thing sticks out in common with all of them:

    The cyclists in question were using the roads outside of permitted hours.

    Per the River View Cemetery’s website, the grounds are open from 8am to dusk.

    J.E.L., if you are going through here at 6:15 in the morning, you are TRESPASSING.

    I would imagine you’d be quite upset if Mr Noble asked the Portland Police to set up a sting one morning to catch trespassers.

    Look, people, it’s quite simple: the cemetery and the roads within are PRIVATE PROPERTY. Have some respect for other people’s property. Start making a lot of noise for viable alternative routes; the BTA is supposed to work FOR YOU, so put them to work already.

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  • John Eric Lutz September 30, 2009 at 3:56 pm

    “The cyclists in question were using the roads outside of permitted hours.”

    Really? You know that for a fact?

    Read the post from PH, the one above yours: “Add me to the list of nasty wipe-outs on these speedbumps. This happened Sunday, late afternoon…”

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  • PH_97202 September 30, 2009 at 8:21 pm

    FWIW: “Dusk” is after sunset. I crashed well before sunset.

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  • PH_97202 September 30, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    Perhaps I should clarify: As I recall, there was no longer direct sunlight visible in the cemetery, or, there was only a little. (That, I think, is part of why I didn’t see the bump.) But there was direct sunlight on the Sellwood Bridge (which I rolled over as I loped home to clean my wounds). So “sunset” in the cemetery? At any rate, my crash was certainly before dusk.

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  • steve October 1, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    If you were going 25mph as you state, you were speeding.

    Dr. Klutz is the person who has repeatedly admitted to trespassing.

    If you did not see the 4 bright yellow lines spanning the entire width of the roadway, you were not paying attention. Or perhaps you are legally blind?

    Either way you were speeding and certainly riding too fast for the conditions, as evidenced by your crash.

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  • John Eric Lutz October 1, 2009 at 1:40 pm

    I have never crashed in the cemetery in the 23+ years I have been riding in it.

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  • LG October 1, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    I too use the cemetery as my commute route. I slow down for grounds crew, any autos, and other cyclists I encounter. I also consider myself an experienced rider so when I crashed on monday the 21st of september in the early morning. I didnt say “maybe I was going too fast”, nor did I think I should improve my riding skills. My first thought was “why was this unpainted and unsigned ?” I could only assume the intent was to injure a few cyclists in the process of slowing the speeders down.

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  • Cecil October 1, 2009 at 6:55 pm

    FWIW, it is possible to get all the way from the top to the bottom of the cemetery and encounter only one speed bump – the last one before the gate before Macadam.

    Also FWIW, I compared the cemetery speed bump (the one by the gate, which is the only one I encounter) to those in the parking lot between Wilson HS and Reike Elementary. The metrics are almost exactly the same.

    I am not trying to make any points – just offering information. Until the recent spate of ad hominem attacks, I was finding this to be one of the more interesting and informative discussion threads on this blog – perhaps we can return to the reasoned debate and stop with the figurative chest thumping?

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  • Jason October 2, 2009 at 7:48 am

    I sympathize with Riverview. Unfortunately, some cyclists do not check their speed and are rude at inappropriate times. Some feel because they are cyclists they deserve some sort of special entitlement.

    However, the speed bumps are unsafe and they should be made safer. While trying to solve a safety problem, Riverview has created another safety problem.

    On September 25, I was commuting to work for the first time in awhile. I was only going between 15 and 20 mph when I was bucked from my bike and landed on my head and shoulder. I did not know the speed bumps had been installed and never saw it. I ended up in an ambulance and at Emmanual Trauma ward where I spent three days with a broken clavicle, scapula, and five broken ribs.

    Riverview, please consult ODOT’s guidelines for traffic control devices to make sure the speed bumps are safe for all.

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  • LG October 2, 2009 at 3:53 pm

    Wow !
    Now I’m curious to know just how many people(and bikes) have been injured in Riverview. Add to that related medical expenses and repairs…
    I would more than a bit nervous if I was in Riverviews’ position.

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