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Further clarification from TriMet on transit mall bus/bike crash

Posted by on August 31st, 2010 at 12:29 pm

[Unofficial graphic, not created by TriMet.]

Graphic showing location of vehicles just prior to collision.
(Graphic: BikePortland)


There has been a lot of speculation and confusion about the crash involving a TriMet bus and a bicycle on SW 6th and Morrison back on August 12th.

The bus operator turned left prior to the collision and came in contact with Richard Krebs, who was on his bicycle (he suffered serious leg injuries and remains at OHSU getting reconstructive surgery). The Portland Police Bureau issued a citation to Krebs, for failure to obey a traffic control device. The bus operator was not cited.

Photo of the crash scene. The bus in front is the one involved with the crash. Note its angle relative to the left lane it was traveling in.
(Photo: Bill Jackson)

But how exactly did the collision occur? Was Krebs cited for running the light, the “Don’t Walk” signal, or the bus’s flashing “Yield” signal? What lane was the bus in prior to its left turn? According to an update I just received from TriMet, I can now offer a better answer to those questions.

  • Both vehicles were in the left-most lane of SW 6th headed north.
  • Krebs was behind the bus “traveling at a high rate of speed” (according to TriMet). (Krebs has also allegedly stated that his brakes malfunctioned).
  • Just before making the left turn onto Morrison, the bus veered into the center lane in order to make a wide left turn, which was necessary to clear a MAX train that was stopped on Morrison at the Pioneer Square North station. (TriMet referred to this as a “button hook” turn*.)
  • The bus entered the intersection on a green light.
  • During the turn, the light changed to yellow.
  • The collision occurred on a yellow light.
  • Krebs was cited for entering the intersection on a yellow light.

And here’s what TriMet’s Mary Fetsch says about the bus’s turn signal:

“The yield signal on the back of the bus has no bearing in this incident, since it’s only used for pulling back into a travel lane after servicing a stop.”

I hope this new information and the graphic above helps to clarify what happened. Given that TriMet won’t release the video because of pending court action, more information will likely come out in the weeks and months to come.

UPDATE: *A bus operator in the comments has pointed out that the ODOT Commercial Driver’s Manual warns against making the type of jug-handle turn that the bus operator appears to have made. TriMet has said the bus made a “button hook” turn (staying in the lane), but the photos from the scene show that the bus more likely swung into the adjacent lane and made a “jug handle” turn, which the ODOT manual says is “incorrect.” Here’s the graphic from the manual:

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MeghanH
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MeghanH

How can a person on a bicycle even see over/through a turning bus to tell if the light is green, yellow or red?

Brad
Guest
Brad

Apologies to Tri-Met and for biased assumptions in 3…2…

Black Dude on Bicycle
Guest
Black Dude on Bicycle

Common sense would suggest that if you are entering an intersection and cannot see the color of the traffic signal, you should atleast be prepared to stop, get hit, or proceed with care.

Matthew
Guest
Matthew

Hm, sounds like either Krebs tried to dart past the bus before it made it’s turn, or his brakes failed like he claims and he was just out of control.

David
Guest
David

Common sense would suggest that if you are entering an intersection and there’s a big freakin’ bus turning into your path, you back off, regardless of the color of the light.

Paulie
Guest
Paulie

Thanks for following up on this, Jonathan. Now I get what happened. My original understanding was that the bike, bus, and MAX train were all on 6th. This clarifies what actually happened.

GLV
Guest
GLV

TriMet has reviewed this graphic, and verified its accuracy?

Vance Longwell
Guest

I haven’t said boo about this so far. But c’mon, doesn’t matter what the signalling devices are doing, turning vehicles have to yield to bicycle riders. I mean, isn’t that the whole justification for routing bicycles past the right-hand side of right turning vehicles?

I’m disappointed with the decisions the victim here made, but they don’t appear to have broken any rules, or laws. These new rules on yellows are asinine, and I simply refuse to treat them as any other thing than a warning to me that a red is about to occur. The stance the Nanny State has taken with yellow lights recently is REALLY gumming up the legal-works, here. Watch now as it screws this VICTIM out of their rights in civil court.

I’ve been in this exact same physical situation more times than I can count. Tri-Met buses, of course, have those blinkers on the sides, but they’re just not the type of equipment one has burned into the brain, like a traditional, rear-facing, turn-signal; and I’m guilty of not seeing them, quite often. In these situations, which I’ve dealt with by braking, and aiming for a sidewalk with a curb, I’m ceaselessly amazed that I escaped the notice of the operator. These folks just aren’t watching for bikes.

See, and I was already to flame this bike rider, the past few days, and it turns out they didn’t really do anything wrong. MAYBE the yellow light thing, but eff them on that anyway.

Nah Alex, I’ll take, “motor traffic must always yield to bikes when making turns”, for a thousand, please.

J Jeffrey Clyde
Guest
J Jeffrey Clyde

As per your last sentence that bus operators are not looking for bikes, I disagree. As a bus operator, a yellow bus driving downtown I can assure you I am looking for everything, everyone and sometimes I miss someone or something. It scares me beyond compare and I was lucky or did that bike rider or pedestrian not acess the situation before stepping off the curb or are they challenging the bus for their legal right of way? This is why when turning corners going slow is best. I have observed other larger vehicle drivers use less caution and violate rights of way and it scares me too!. We need to instruct both bus operators and other large vehicle operators and bike riders about how to think of each other. I think of bike riders as a family member. I ride, my sister rides and life is precious. Bike riders although the law says in Portland you and pedestrians have the right of way, need to take some responsibility for your actions. It is not prudent to assume the driver of a forty foot bus sees you or to insist for your right of way when you are not protected. I learned to yield to larger vehicles as a learning driver at 15.5 years old. Apparently that once common practice has yielded to my right of way or I am going to cause unnecessary harm to myself and everyone nearby when not taking responsibility for my actions as a pedestrian or bike rider. When you make that decision, it puts all the responsibility on the vehicle operator and that is not right. We share the the streets, we share the responsibility. And don’t write me off to fast, my friend Katryn Rickson a vibrant young women lost her life at SW 3rd and SW Main back in 2012 to a combination truck driver who must have seen her, but didn’t understand what he saw or who knows? Was he driven by the company to deliver his products? Did he even see her? The serious injury and or loss of life is devastating for those involved, those nearby and loved ones. I turn onto 3rd during the school year from SWSalmon in the afternoon and from SW Jefferson in morning. It is not a simple maneuver as there are so many people to watch out for. It is not like driving a car where the operator has nearly unrestricted visibility. We are constantly checking our mirrors, Windows and windshield looking for that person who may be distracted by whatever! It is not an easy job, it is exhausting and dangerous. Those that have never driven a 40 foot 15 ton bus will have difficulty understanding how serious our jobs are or how seriously we take our responsibilities.

Black Dude on Bicycle
Guest
Black Dude on Bicycle

So, amber lights on the sides of vehicles indicating that a vehicle is going to change lanes or turn suddenly become irrelevant because you are on a bicycle?

And since when was it legal to pass another vehicle in the same lane as you regardless of it is turning or not?

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)
Guest

GLV,

the graphic is completely unofficial and has not been reviewed by TriMet. It’s my best attempt given what I’ve learned so far.

I’ll go and make its unofficialness more clear right away.

Velophile in Exile
Guest
Velophile in Exile

IF the facts are as TriMet says they are, then Krebs appears to not have exercised due caution in entering the intersection, and apparently in not properly maintaining his bike.

Regardless, hope he heals well.

Nik
Guest
Nik

It’s not illegal to enter an intersection on a yellow light.

They still have not released enough information to justify the claim that the cyclist was at fault. He may very well have been but the detail just isn’t there yet.

Did the bus driver signal the left turn adequately prior to pulling into the center lane. I don’t believe that anybody would attempt that pass if they were aware that the bus was pulling wide to make a left turn.

It seems to me that it’s just an unfortunate accident that probably could have been prevented by at least one person involved being more aware, but we have to blame somebody, so blame the one who got run over.

Ted Buehler
Guest
Ted Buehler

I bet this is the first time in Oregon history that a bicyclist has been cited for entering an intersection on a yellow light.

I remain highly unconvinced of his guilt.

From the looks of it, the bus left-hooked the bicyclist.

Ted Buehler

Steve B.
Guest

Based on the evidence, it sounds to me like the person on a bike didn’t realize the bus was making a left turn. It’s possible to mistake a bus making a wide turn to the left, as just a turn to the right. Being on the bus mall, this would make even more sense since there are designated BUS ONLY lane that seem to indicated where buses should live.

I hope the rider has a quick recovery!

David
Guest
David

@Vance #8:

You’re incorrect here:

“But c’mon, doesn’t matter what the signalling devices are doing, turning vehicles have to yield to bicycle riders. I mean, isn’t that the whole justification for routing bicycles past the right-hand side of right turning vehicles?”

The easiest way to think about this particular case is to pretend that the bike was a motorcycle. Is a motorcycle allowed to pass a vehicle on the left in the same lane? No, they’re not.

There isn’t a bike lane here, so this wasn’t a fail-to-yield by the bus driver–assuming that the illustration is a correct depiction of the event.

are
Guest

811.260(3) says a driver facing a steady circular yellow “shall stop” at the stop line or before entering the crosswalk, but if he “cannot stop in safety,” he “may drive cautiously through the intersection.” one might imagine that “cannot stop in safety” means you are going too fast to stop, but then how could you go “cautiously through.” so it must mean something else (in other words, going too fast to stop is not a good excuse). maybe it means if you would get rear-ended if you suddenly stopped, or something like that. in any event, splitting the lane with a bus is probably not a real good idea. but ticketing this guy seems like adding insult to injury. and if it were not just a traffic infraction it would be pretty hard to prove the charge (unless tri-met has some really sharp video). but the agency gets high marks for a very elaborate story, anyway. the problem with an elaborate story is you have to be able to defend each and every detail.

J Jeffrey Clyde
Guest
J Jeffrey Clyde

Before I say any more here, let me say I hope the bike rider is healing and the bus operator as they are called is on the mend too. The emotional mend at times is tougher than the physical. This is what the company I work for “an avoidable accident”. It could have been avoided and it is often assumed the operator is at fault. We have also to remember that buses are carrying people. On a yellow light as a school bus driver I am trained to stop on the yellow, however, if I am a out 20 or less mph downtown and I am positioned to close to the interSection when the light changes yellow I must think not only about all those outside of the bus, but it is my job to protect the children on the bus. We are trained to drive the school bus in turning by looking in our mirrors before we make the turn, in the middle of our turn and at the end of the turn. If the driver is going to fast this will not work, not enough time. This is why I go slow, because the amount of time saved is never worth the pain caused because I wasn’t following my training. If you are late, you will not gain that much time by driving irresponsibly. And our training and our company policy no right on red. Remember, we are not hauling freight or beer, but passengers who also need to be protected.

slowneasy
Guest
slowneasy

People are really hung up here. I know Morrison St. and it is narrow, just one lane for cars and buses and one lane with concrete bumps separating the Max from the other vehicle lane. I made a right turn yesterday on my school bus route from SW 15th onto SW Morrison using the button hook turning procedure, not the milk jug procedure that the vehicle hand book says not to use. and I had to trespass onto the Max tracks to complete the turn and I only drive a 37.5 foot conventional bus, not a 40-45 foot transit style flat nose bus. Morisson is to narrow of a street and I am putting in for a route change to SW Taylor which has two large vehicle only lanes to turn right onto. My feeling is someone is blaming the bike rider but I think there must be shared fault with the bus driver to for making this type of turn which is not recommended. Ref. Commercial Drivers Handbook pages 28-29 2.7.6 fig. 2.13 This book can be found on line.

h
Guest
h

The cyclist could have taken the whole lane. It is safe that way.

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)
Guest

slowneasy,

i took a look at the ODOT manual. you’re right. TriMet said the driver made a “button hook” turn which is labeled as the “correct” way, but given the position of the bus in the photos, it looks like it too more of a “jug handle” turn, which the manual labels as “incorrect”.

here’s the graphic from the manual:

pro driver
Guest
pro driver

Buses really can’t perform a buttonhook or jughandle he simply moved to the right ot his lane to change the track of his rear wheel to clear a corner.(a buttonhook is exclusive to 5th wheel equiped combination vehicles)

Bob_M
Guest
Bob_M

There are more than 6 million traffic accidents a year in the US. This was a traffic accident. Cyclists have long had a bumper sticker slogan That said “Bikes are Traffic” Well we get the bad with the good on that deal.

Without getting into the blame game I hope Krebs heals fully.

BURR
Guest
BURR

1. IMO, it’s possible the bus blocked the cyclist’s view of the signal.

2. I’m with Steve B, #14, the cyclist might have thought that the bus was merging right into the adjacent bus only lane, a critical detail would be if and when the bus operator signalled his turn.

trail abuser
Guest
trail abuser

Reviewing photos of the bike under the tires of the bus reveals the bike in good condition(prior to the accident) with meaty brake blocks. I think the cyclist blamed “equipment failure”, when it was really the fault of the person controlling the equipment. It’s common for drivers to say their “brakes failed” when trying to dispel personal responsibility after an accident, as if all blame will then be shouldered on their car instead.

Peter Smith
Guest
Peter Smith

Reading this further statement from TriMet/police/authorities and some commenters here is Orwellian. Once again, the official story from authorities did not add up, and once again the falsehoods and lies of omission are gradually creeping out into the light.

First, entering an intersection on a yellow light is against the law? How is that possible? It’s not possible. Must be more misdirection by TriMet. We need to know what the actual citation was.

They must have a good PR person at TriMet — never tell the truth, most certainly don’t be candid or honest about it, and finally, drag the truth out for as many months/years as possible — that will lessen the impact, likely reducing the calls for independent investigations, including firings and criminal investigations. They can lie to us and avoid jail time, but they can’t so easily lie to the police.

It’s been clear to me that this was the bus driver’s fault – and the bus driver should be in jail. I highly doubt that the bus driver signaled their turn at all, much less at least 100 feet before executing their death turn, and I highly doubt that the bus driver was proceeding cautiously through that intersection, it is obvious that the driver did not cede the right of way to the cyclist, and it is obvious that the drive drove into the path of the cyclist, and then drive onto/over the cyclist.

The driver probably saw the yellow and decided to ‘beat it’ — so the driver stayed off the brake (to keep a higher cruising speed), then quickly swerved the bus into the right lane (to get the wide turn radius), before recklessly jerking it back to the left, across the left lane, and over the cyclists leg(s).

The bus driver needs to go to jail. The TriMet spokesperson needs to go to jail. The investigating police officer needs to go to jail.

The specific charges against the bus driver should include:
1) Failure to maintain lane (for the right swing-out)
2) Failure to signal lane change and/or failure to signal lane change with required 100+ ft distance of executing the turn.
3) Dangerous Driving Causing Grievous Bodily Harm.

And there are probably a few other charges that should be leveled against this dangerous driver.

And, like Dan Christensen, the driver still has a job, and is still a danger to Portland cyclists.

p.s. i guess we have no idea if the graphic is correct or not, but it’s very helpful to at least paint a picture of what might have happened. the official story is not credible, but this graphic is — it does represent a reasonable scenario for what could have been the driver’s crimes, and how they could have led to this crash.

Did I miss it? Again?
Guest
Did I miss it? Again?

The diagram as shown in 19 and what is the reality of the intersection do not match up. According to the diagram, the bus driver would have to pull onto the sidewalk to correctly execute a buttonhook turn.

Also – if I were to hit a bus in the intersection because I was illegally passing it in/on a vehicle (motorized or not) with faulty brakes, well, ummm… Guess I’d have no defense.

trail abuser
Guest
trail abuser

“The Button Hook Scandal”

I see semi trucks do the jug handle turn when they articulate their trailers and leave them in their lane so that following motorists aren’t attempted to pass. A Trimet bus can’t articulate to leave it’s rear in a previously occupied lane. I don’t see how the bus could have pulled off a button hook turn at that intersection with a MAX train stopped there.

Ted Buehler
Guest
Ted Buehler

Here is SlownEasy’s diagram reoriented, and flipped to illustrate left turns.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/11599639@N03/4945899569/

Of course, Morrison only has one driving lane, so the button-hook wouldn’t have worked anyway.

I’m thinking the driver’s choices were to:
1) use the MAX tracks lane to execute a conventional turn into the driving lane
2) request a re-route
3) execute a jug-handle turn

Ted Buehler

Jim F
Guest
Jim F

So a guy on a bike flies into an intersection on the left hand side of a bus that is making a left turn with its left turn signal on. No wonder the biker admitted fault. He’s just lucky he didn’t die.

Common sense should tell you that you never want to enter an intersection on the side of a bus or garbage truck. It ain’t that hard to not get hit by a bus people.

Tourbiker
Guest
Tourbiker

wouldn’t have been an accident if he had just taken the lane, and ridden responsibly.
seriously, you don’t get it both ways.
either be a vehicle or be a pedestrian, but don’t think you can bounce around being both splitting traffic, changing lanes without sigs, and expect the rest of the traffic to read your mind.

pro driver
Guest
pro driver

what the two above said

Brad
Guest
Brad

Reality check: Someone on our team made mistakes and got hurt. Going too fast-check. Not maintaining proper following distance-check. Not yielding to the signals of a vehicle in front of him-check. Attempting to pass another road user illegally-check. Riding an improperly maintained bike-check.

This unfortunate incident was NOT the result of malice, diminished capacity, anti-bike bias, motor vehicle driver impairment, engineering incompetence, the editorial board of The Oregonian, swamp gas, Bigfoot, extraterrestrials, or the conniving and conspiratorial machinations of The Illuminati. A human being riding a bicycle made several judgement errors resulting in an injury accident. End of story.

Stig
Guest
Stig

In my head it’s looking like this:

1. Cyclist was drafting behind the bus, going fast in the left lane.
2. Bus appears to be turning right into the center lane and moves over.
3. Cyclist comes around the bus, possibly sees that the light is yellow.
4. Cyclist is going much too fast to safely stop due to speed or bad brakes, or combination of both.
5. Bus proceeds to make left turn following the swerve into the center lane and collides with the cyclist.

The ‘button hook’ maneuver may not have been possible for the bus since the MAX was present in the oncoming lane at the left turn.

JAT in Seattle
Guest
JAT in Seattle

h at 18 is correct – had the cyclist taken the whole lane he would have been behind the bus and been forced to wait for the bus to finish the turn – at which point the light would have been red.

The distinction between a correct buttonhook and an incorrect jug handle is intersting, but the fact is (and I can’t believe I’m saying this since I always hate the motor-centrist 200 Lbs of bike always loses physics reductionist argument, but…) if you’re riding on city streets you should know how busses use the road. They’re really pretty predictable.

They make wide turns; they stop at bus stops with their tails hanging out into the travel lane; they leap-frog past you (and you past them) all the way down the road, and they follow a specified route (as designated by that number in the little frame in the back window)

Is Krebs under an obligation to know that a special shuttle route operating that day only is going to turn at that particular intersection? Of course not. Are there are a lot of Tri-Met operators who are out to get cyclists – deliberately luring them into dangerous spots on the road then feinting with their 30,000 Lb bus (with onboard video recording and passenger witnesses) or “shutting the door” like a racer at P.I.R.? I don’t know.

But being patient with a slower moving vehicle in front of you, or knowing that vehicles(that are in front of you) in the left lane may slow because they’re turning – those seem like courteous common sense attributes that every road user ought to have – we ask no less of motorists.

freeman
Guest
freeman

Usually, there aren’t buses turning onto this narrow street (morrison)… from the bus mall. This was a combination of events due to a traffic re-routing of the bus lines to accomadate a road closure further up the lines…

Seems tri-met should step up and take a little responsibility for making a bad situation worse with a piss poor re-routing plan ( if it was a plan at all – are there ‘standing’ contingincies for all tri-met route closure possibilites? )…

Have any or all of these “options” take into account other road users and what implications or aggravations these “alternatives” may present?

Each ‘accident’ involving a vulnerable cyclist should be reviewed and examined from all possible viewpoints for future lessons we could all glean.

Hopefully tri-met will do the same.

q`Tzal
Guest
q`Tzal

MeghanH #1
How can a person on a bicycle even see over/through a turning bus to tell if the light is green, yellow or red?

Regardless of vehicle type if you are following too close to the vehicle in front of you to be able to safely obey all traffic laws you are in violation of your duties as a road user.

Got at least one ticket for this back in my nefarious youth.

Being able to see traffic signals, signs, crosswalks and other traffic so that you are able to yield is a basic duty of all road users.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

freeman,

Why should TriMet take any responsibility in this case?

The cyclist was at fault for overtaking in the same lane as the bus was traveling.

The rerouting has nothing to do with it. The bus was in the left lane of a one way street, in the bus mall, making a left turn.

Do you know the action of every vehicle on the road? Just because you’ve never seen a vehicle turn left onto a particular street doesn’t mean you can assume that the vehicle won’t make that turn.

The cyclist put themselves in a bad position making an assumption about how a vehicle would act at that particular intersection, then made some very bad decisions on how to act on that assumption.

Thankfully they didn’t lose there life.

Ted Buehler
Guest
Ted Buehler

2 excerpts from the Oregon Driver Manual, 2010 – 2011 (Class C — non commercial)
http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/DMV/forms/manuals.shtml

Right turns
http://www.flickr.com/photos/11599639@N03/4946027041/

Left Turns
http://www.flickr.com/photos/11599639@N03/4946614662/

So for right turns, you need to be aware of overtaking bicyclists, and yield to them if they’re in an actual bike lane.

For both types of turns, you are not to swing wide.

So, Mr. Driver was in the wrong for swinging wide. The correct action would have been to proceed forward, and radio the dispatcher for revised routing that did not involve illegal maneuvers.

If they’re going to slap a “running the yellow” citation on Mr. Krebs, they should also slap a “incorrect left turn” citation on Mr. Driver and have an investigation as to why Mr. Driver was directed on a route he could not legally navigate. So it doesn’t happen again…

My $0.02

Ted Buehler

Matthew Denton
Guest
Matthew Denton

The brakes issue disturbs me. I work on my own brakes and yes I’ve made mistakes in adjusting them, but when I get on my bike after doing anything more complicated than unlocking it, (for instance, removing a wheel,) I check the brakes before I go very far. In any case, I have two of them, so at least one of them should work. (I’ll admit I’m paranoid, I also have two taillights in case the batteries die on one of them,)

Seager
Guest

This is silly. The bus turned on a left blinker, then swerved right into the middle lane, and then turned left across the path of a cyclist? Of course the cyclist was confused by this!

John Lascurettes
Guest

Regarding the Yellow Light laws in Oregon:

ORS 811.260(4):
(4) Steady yellow arrow signal. A driver facing a steady yellow arrow signal, alone or in combination with other signal indications, is thereby warned that the related right of way is being terminated. Unless entering the intersection to make a movement permitted by another signal, a driver facing a steady yellow arrow signal shall stop at a clearly marked stop line, but if none, shall stop before entering the marked crosswalk on the near side of the intersection, or if there is no marked crosswalk, then before entering the intersection. If a driver cannot stop in safety, the driver may drive cautiously through the intersection.

Note the difference between that and California Vehicle Code (which based on what people are saying I think that they are used to):
21452. (a) A driver facing a steady circular yellow or yellow arrow signal is, by that signal, warned that the related green movement is ending or that a red indication will be shown immediately thereafter.

California defines that a yellow is simply a warning that a red light is coming (and a red light is explicitly defined as one cannot enter or stand in the intersection if the light is red).

In Oregon, it is illegal to enter the intersection on a yellow unless it is unsafe to not enter the intersection (such as it changes when you’re 10 feet from the intersection and you’re traveling at 20mph). I was pretty baffled by that when I made the transplant to Oregon, but there it is.

To put it another way. The Yellow is the “gray area” light in California. In Oregon it’s less ambiguous. Don’t enter the intersection unless you can’t not enter the intersection.

BURR
Guest
BURR

here’s a couple more things to consider:

1. since the bus driver was on an emergency shuttle route – and not a normal route – he may not have been very familiar with that intersection.

2. There’s also the matter of route selection on the part of TriMet; shouldn’t they know that this is a difficult intersection to get a bus through and select an alternate route, even (maybe especially?) on an emergency route?

BURR
Guest
BURR

it isn’t illegal to enter an intersection on yellow, in Oregon I believe the law is that you need to completely clear the intersection before the light turns red, but that doesn’t prevent you from legally entering the intersection on yellow.

I do see a lot of TriMet operators downtown fail to clear the red light at intersections they entered on yellow.

adam
Guest
adam

This is a perfect storm of traffic accident where any number of different decisions could have avoided it.

Seems like the person on the bike assumed the bus was pulling into the center lane and just put his head down to pedal through the intersection, only to be hit by the turning bus. Anyone have a good guess on how fast the cyclist was going? I would like to know what TriMet considers to be “a high rate of speed”.

Its unfortunate that TriMet has to play this game(the photos make the “button hook” turn an obvious lie) and won’t accept responsibility for a poorly chosen reroute. Oh, and don’t forget, they are sitting on the video of this whole incident – which would answer alot of the questions

slowneasy
Guest
slowneasy

I have a couple of more items to add to this discussion. Whom ever decided to route this particular bus from SW6th onto SW Morrison should be held accountable. The driver upon seeing the turn to be dangerous, because a turn that can’t be made safely is dangerous. The better idea though would have been to make a SF left turn. You see, I’m from SF Bay Area. Here’s how it is done: go the extra block to SW Alder, make a right turn, then a right turn on SW 5th, then a right turn on SW Morrison. It is my understanding that UPS has determined that left turns are more dangerous than right turns and attempts to route their drivers using only right turns. If a company that delivers packages to varying addresses can figure it our, why on earth do some other companies and people struggle so with being safe?

bobcycle
Guest
bobcycle

So if it was not possible to make a left turn around MAX without jug-handling … maybe the correct response from driver should have been wait until MAX train leaves? 30 second wait vs. potentially unsafe move that resulted in much pain and suffering.

Jen
Guest
Jen

Citing Krebs isn’t necessarily an isolated incident. I was pulled over by two policemen after I cruised throught a yellow (I felt I was going to fast to be able to adequately stop prior to the intersection) light on my bike. They were relatively nice after the first few questions and gave me a warning to stop on yellow lights.

My only questions about it are 1) why even have yellow lights then? Just make them red and green. (I know that is ridiculous, but is it anymore ridiculous than getting a ticket for not stopping on a yellow?) and 2) how many people have they pulled over in their cars and lectured? I now stop at that light when it is yellow and routinely see two to three cars continue through the intersection right in front of police officers.

slowneasy
Guest
slowneasy

To bobcycle, max train not leaving read previ!ous posts to see similar comments

jeff
Guest
jeff

as for any discussion here about “not yielding to the rider”, give it up please, honestly.
The rider was NOT in another lane of traffic where the yield would be the drivers responsibility. They were in the same lane, it was the riders responsibility to not attempt to pass the bus until it was completely out of his lane. End of story.
Do the same folks here who think the bus didn’t yield try to squeeze there way into those same spots while driving their car? NO, you hit your brakes and wait a second. Yes, it can be a little confusing if the bus moves right to turn left (effectivelyl counter steering), but under no circumstance is it legal to shoot a lane gap because you’re impatient. Learn from his mistakes folks, as well as all of the other cycling traffic errors we’ve seen the past few weeks.

slowneasy
Guest
slowneasy

Some of this discussion speaks to what is written in the laws and how much we know about the laws. As a professional driver I do some research into the laws governing the way I operate my vehicles on the streets and highways because ignorance as they say is no excuse and since I am earning my living driving, I can’t afford to make mistakes that some others take for granted. For instance, is it legal in Oregon to make a right turn on a red arrow? That seems to be a common mistake here. Just ask yourself if it is illegal to make a left turn on a red arrow? Rationalization and Justification are often used by many people out on the roads, streets and highways.

Mindful Cyclist
Guest
Mindful Cyclist

BURR #39: Regarding #2. I would guess that people were waiting on Morrison to take the MAX and had to go across the street to catch the shuttle instead. It would be difficult for trimet to somehow announce to everyone that was expecting a train to go a few blocks away. I do agree that Morrison is maybe not the best street, but at the same time passengers need to have some idea where to catch it. (Actually, does anybody know what the route they took to pick up people and where the MAX stopped downtown?)

And, if I am going to follow a large vehicle like a bus, there is a good chance my view of upcoming traffic signals are going to be blocked. It is my responsibility to make certain that I am able to stop. A judge or the ticketing officer are not going to care if my view was impeded and nor should they.

#18 and #31 are correct. If you ride on 6th, take the lane and ride with traffic. It is basically downhill and the lights are timed at 12 mph. It would be very hard for even a very casual cyclist not to be able to keep up with traffic and not impede it.

What I would really like to see/hear before I make any judgments about this is 1) the video and 2) what does he mean by having “bad brakes”?

I am just glad the outcome was not a lot worse and hope he makes a full recovery.

rider
Guest
rider

Peter Smith: You might be the most ridiculous person in existence.

BURR
Guest
BURR

Actually, you could blame this whole thing on the addition of light rail to the bus mall and the dumb new lane configuration, which was resoundingly criticized by all sorts of cyclists when it was first proposed; this was bound to happen sooner or later and it probably won’t be the last time, either, thanks for nothing PBOT, TriMet and Portland Business Alliance!