The Monday Roundup: Family Feud on ‘cyclists,’ ice-skate commuting and more

Family Feud answers

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(Image via Road.cc)

Here are the bike links from around the world that caught our eyes this week:

Seahawks cycling: Seattle’s NFL team is headed back to the Super Bowl and — believe it or not — it was a bicycle that stole national headlines after their thrilling playoff win.

Annoying game show: Australia’s version of the Family Feud game show decided to ask: “What is something annoying that a cyclist might do?”

Ice-skate commuting: An Edmonton landscape architect has proposed a “Freezeway” that would let people skate to work. The winter “skate lane” would serve as a bike lane in the summer.

Sweet reminder: Berlin activists are apparently letting people know they’ve parked their cars in bike lanes by using whipped cream to mark them with pictures of bikes.

Bike-share savior? The Canadian real estate developer who last year bid $4 million to buy the continent’s largest bike-share equipment company, the then-bankrupt PBSC, did so without hiring accountants or laywers. The NYT has an interesting profile that also includes maybe the best short summary I’ve seen of the 2012-2014 turmoil in the bike sharing industry.

“Back to the future”: That’s the name for the new city program in Sitka, Alaska, that improves road safety by turning paved roads back to gravel.

Bus dog: A Seattle Labrador has taught herself to ride the bus, solo, to her favorite dog park.

Bike share rebrand: The former Alta Bicycle Share, bought by a New York real estate investment firm, is now known as Motivate.

Camera patent: Apple seems to be working on a product that could compete with GoPro.

Smart handlebars: Now being crowdfunded, they plug into your phone and buzz to give you turn-by-turn directions.

Strava speeds: The average speed of a British Strava user in 2014 was 12.4 mph for women, 14.3 mph for men.

Right-pricing parking: The Economist summarizes the national trend toward eliminating public subsidies for central-city car parking.

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African cycling: A South African team has qualified for this year’s Tour de France. It’s the continent’s first.

Adams, post-mayor: Former Mayor Sam Adams is leaving Portland for D.C., where he’ll direct the World Resources Institute’s U.S. Climate Initiative.

Transpo leader fired: Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber has fired one of the state’s top transportation officials, apparently because she blocked using $2 million in state transportation funds to subsidize a coal export terminal. (He’s publicly said that he too opposes coal exports.)

Highway subsidy: In Minnesota, the state’s road system is a major wealth transfer from urban to rural areas.

Food trucks < food carts < food bikes. Or something like that. Local business Trailhead Coffee is the lead image in this NPR trend story.

High-viz psychology: Though there’s nothing wrong with wearing high-viz gear, IrishCycle.com argues, treating it “as a solution to poor or inattentive driving” is as futile as expecting someone to see the gorilla in the famous observation test.

Charm City bikeway: Baltimore is working on a protected bike lane that’d form the spine of its downtown network.

Freeway killed: The new Republican governor of Illinois killed the planned Illiana Expressway last Monday, saying the state can’t afford the $1.5 billion it’d cost.

Seatbelts vs. safety: This Andy Singer cartoon captures a concept with a rich history:

If you come across a noteworthy bicycle story, send it in via email, Tweet @bikeportland, or whatever else and we’ll consider adding it to next Monday’s roundup.

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drew
drew
8 years ago

Hi viz wear is not the “solution” to inattentive driving of course. But it can decrease your chances of not being seen by careless motorists. There is nothing futile about it. When I drive and I see the reflective ankle straps going up and down on a dark road, I know exactly whats up ahead. Reflective gear helps with visibility; it’s as simple as that. It’s hard for me to understand the strident arguments out there against hi viz wear.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago
Reply to  drew

“…It’s hard for me to understand the strident arguments out there against hi viz wear.” drew

Not that it’s a reason of much substance, in light of the benefit that use of hi-vis can offer, but many people simply don’t like how wearing hi-vis makes them look, and for that reason, won’t use it. For example, some time back in a comment to a bikeportland story, this sites publisher editor Jonathan Maus wrote that he didn’t wear hi-vis in the the city, “…because it’s ugly. …”.

I guess I can understand being self conscious about appearance to the extent of not wanting to wear something that makes a person feel they look bad. Extenuating circumstances should rule out that concern though. In bad road situations, good road users, especially people driving, likely aren’t interested in fashion related personality appraisals of other road users, near as much as they’re interested in simply being able to more readily see vulnerable road users on the road.

soren
soren
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

I’m far more worried about falling down in the shower than the small risk associated with not wearing hi viz in PDX.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago
Reply to  soren

You must be showering in a very weird place, if it’s somewhere motor vehicles are driving through, putting you in danger of being hit by them and knocked down.

gutterbunnybikes
gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

Hi viz’s benefits are pretty minimal. It only works in direct light, where by all rights – you should be visible to a driver anyway.

As long as I’m riding in a reasonable manor, it’s the drivers responsibility to be aware of where they are going.

I also don’t like the potential that its use could be come to be expected of riders to wear. If that happens it could introduce a whole new realm of victim blaming – like helmet use. Where if a rider isn’t wearing it is somehow a sign of the riders fault regardless of the cause of the collision.

Also it can be seen as yet another piece of equipment that is deemed necessary to simply ride a bicycle which can be discouraging to potential bike riders, especially those of limited means to begin with.

I could really care less of how I look, one of my goto rides is an early 70’s folder. It’s pretty ridiculous as is, and some hi viz might actually make me look more legit when riding that bike.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago

“Hi viz’s benefits are pretty minimal. It only works in direct light, where by all rights – you should be visible to a driver anyway. …” gutterbunnybikes

You made this claim some time back, in the comment section of a bikeportland story, neglecting to clarify until prompted to do so, whether your claim referred to hi-vis colors, or reflective material.

Family and friends tell me their experience driving, is that hi-vis, both the colored and the reflective type, in low light conditions, are very beneficial to helping them see vulnerable road users. The same report tends to come from strangers relating their experience driving, when the topic of vulnerable road users comes up in conversation.

The only place I don’t hear people appreciative of vulnerable road users enhancing their visibility to other road users through the use of hi-vis, is from various so called biking advocates. Particularly so called biking advocates whose words suggest they seek to shift their personal responsibility for their own safety, on to people that drive.

John Liu
John Liu
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

In gray overcast conditions, which is common here, a fluorescent jacket stands out like a glowing thumb, metaphorically speaking. It is definitely effective at being more noticeable, compared to non hi viz or, especially, the ever stylish black jacket. Many people may choose not to wear one, and that is our right. I sometimes wear hi viz and I sometimes wear black. But why try to pretend that hi viz isn’t indeed highly visible?

gutterbunnybikes
gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

High Viz colors are nearly useless. Reflective only works in direct focused light. I’m pretty much forced to wear hi-viz/reflective in my construction job. Honestly they do very little, and I’m constantly surrounded by it – usually operating heavy equipment too. I can honestly say it has made zero difference in my ability to detect people on the work site. Mind you, I’ve been doing this long enough that hi-viz wasn’t a requirement on a job site when I started. The reason it isn’t effective has to do with how the eye works.

From roughly 5 degrees to 25 degrees from the center of vision your ability to detect colors lessens. After roughly 25 degrees nearly all color detection is gone, and it’s only motion and blocks of light/dark that your eye detects. This is partially the reason right hooks are so common, even in the daylight of the sunniest day you are literally coming out of nowhere when you pass an automobile on the right.

Because of this, high viz and reflective are limited. Where they work, you are already where you should normally be detected.

If you’re riding legal, you have at a minimum a front light and rear reflector on your bicycle already. Lights trump either, because they provide both a sense of motion as you ride and a light source.

Now consider that the vast majority of collisions in an urban environment involving bikes and automobiles occur at intersections where there is less of chance of these pieces of cloth being a factor (like the right hook example – or cross traffic incidents). Very few accidents involve an automobile overtaking a bike rider (and if I’m not mistaken it’s the least likely collision in an urban setting). Which is where reflective is most effective.

I’m not telling anyone to wear it or not too, but to realize it’s very limited in its ability to help you be detected, and so I don’t feel it really matters much. Though If I had to choose I’d wear reflective pant cuffs since they provide a sense of movement while you ride where as stripes on a jacket/helmet/hat don’t. And in low light, it’s movement your eye is best adapted to seeing.

caesar
caesar
8 years ago

“I’m pretty much forced to wear hi-viz/reflective in my construction job. Honestly they do very little, and I’m constantly surrounded by it”

Have you been seriously injured on the job? If not, please thank the high viz clothing that you are forced to wear.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago

“High Viz colors are nearly useless. Reflective only works in direct focused light. I’m pretty much forced to wear hi-viz/reflective in my construction job. Honestly they do very little, and I’m constantly surrounded by it – usually operating heavy equipment too. I can honestly say it has made zero difference in my ability to detect people on the work site. …” gutterbunnybikes

What you’re saying, is use of hi-vis colors is useless: to you.

Many people as road users, find vulnerable road users’ use of hi-vis to be very useful. When I drive, I’ve found that depending on the conditions, hi-vis colors worn by people biking, walking and involved outside a motor vehicle in other activities on or near the road, can make a vast improvement in visibility of them.

Key to the use of hi-vis being able to do its job well, is being aware of conditions in which it can do its job well, and using them within those conditions. El Bic, is correct, noting that I’ve written that hi-vis is both color, and reflective material. Lighting too, is hi-vis. In daylight, hi-vis color may do the job better than reflective hi-vis material, and at night, vice-versa. Awareness of which to wear when, is what can maximize its effectiveness.

Ron G.
Ron G.
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

Did you read the link? Your anecdotal evidence from friends and family only confirms that bright color are bright. The scientific evidence reveals that if people are paying attention, in daylight they’ll see you no matter what you wear. The problem isn’t what we wear, it’s that not everyone is paying attention.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago
Reply to  Ron G.

“Did you read the link? Your anecdotal evidence from friends and family only confirms that bright color are bright. The scientific evidence reveals that if people are paying attention, in daylight they’ll see you no matter what you wear. The problem isn’t what we wear, it’s that not everyone is paying attention.” Ron G.

What you’re claiming about use of hi-vis, is not exactly what my anecdotal evidence from friends and family confirms. What they’re saying, is that hi-vis helps them, in certain conditions, to detect vulnerable road users, far more readily than if hi-vis wasn’t in use.

From a different context, bird watchers, wildlife photographers and hunters may be able to relate, from their visual experience in the wild. If for example, a pheasant’s feather’s were colored day glow orange, or green, instead of the multi-colored browns, blacks and whites they’re colored, against a brushy background of woods, does it not make more sense that day glow feathers would be far more readily detectable to an observer, than would the natural feather coloring?

Ron G.
Ron G.
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

Like I said, bright colors are bright. Yes, they stand out more. Those things aren’t in question. The issue is whether or not that makes you safer.

We’re not talking about people camouflaging themselves like a prey species. We’re talking about people wearing normal clothes, in clear daylight, riding in the proper position on an open road. I would argue that a driver who fails to see someone in those circumstances simply isn’t looking, and adding some brightness to the scene won’t help.

As people jump on the high-vis bandwagon, we end up with more drivers expecting bright colors, feeling like cyclists owe them some high-vis. This leads to some dangerous misinterpretations of the law, like this:

“Particularly so called biking advocates whose words suggest they seek to shift their personal responsibility for their own safety, on to people that drive.”

The legal responsibility of any vehicle user on the road is pretty much absolute: you are not supposed to run into other things or people. In clear daylight, a rider using the road correctly is considered visible (not high, or low, or otherwise qualified), and drivers are required to not run into him. The responsibility doesn’t need shifting–it’s already squarely on the driver.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago
Reply to  Ron G.

“We’re not talking about people camouflaging themselves …” Rong G.

Not deliberately, but in certain road conditions, camouflaging is the generally unintentional effect, and it’s this that hi-vis can effectively work to counter.

“…The legal responsibility of any vehicle user on the road is pretty much absolute: you are not supposed to run into other things or people. In clear daylight, a rider using the road correctly is considered visible (not high, or low, or otherwise qualified), and drivers are required to not run into him. The responsibility doesn’t need shifting–it’s already squarely on the driver.” Ron G.

Responsibility for the safety of people that are vulnerable road users, walking, biking, skateboarding, etc, is not absolutely or exclusively limited people driving. People walking and biking have their own level of responsibility to use the road safely, and aiding other road users in seeing them, is part of that responsibility.

davemess
davemess
8 years ago
Reply to  Ron G.

Ron, are we really just talking about daylight though?
Lots of people riding at night. Are we disputing the fact that more reflective material is a good thing at night?

was carless
was carless
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

Honestly, anything besides a dark colored or black jacket is a huge step up in visibility. My wish would be for everyone to have decent bike lights; I still run across bike ninjas occasionally.

soren
soren
8 years ago

don’t forget the striped tube socks!

SW
SW
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

wsbob
“ For example, some time back in a comment to a bikeportland story, this sites publisher editor Jonathan Maus wrote that he didn’t wear hi-vis in the the city, “…because it’s ugly. …”.
Recommended 1

It’s even uglier laying in the street covered with blood.

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)
Admin
Reply to  SW

Come on folks. My reason for not being particularly inclined to wear hi-viz gear go way beyond “because it’s ugly.” I really don’t appreciate having my opinions misrepresented so please be careful with that.

Yes, fashion is a factor for me. But it’s just one factor.

I also feel that in order to ever get respect from other road users, we must expect it first. When our kids were babies we never “baby-proofed” our house… Even though they could have gulped down toxic chemicals in the kitchen or fallen down stairs and been seriously hurt. Why did we do this? Because we wanted to create an environment where we could establish expectations and behaviors (both from us and them) that kept them safe without putting them into a bubble (or wrapping the entire house in bubble wrap).

Same goes for my approach to riding. I don’t wear a helmet or hi-viz stuff when I am cycling around town on my slow upright bike that always has very bright front and rear lights at night. Those choices make me ride much more cautiously and I believe create an expectation that others will be cautious as well. It’s also about living in a way that reflects what I hope to be the societal norm in the near future — that people stop driving dangerously because they realize there are real and vulnerable humans on the road with them (on bikes and in cars).

And just FYI… When I put on my tight lycra and go out on my fast road bike, I love me some hi-vis stuff. And I always wear my helmet.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago

“Come on folks. My reason for not being particularly inclined to wear hi-viz gear go way beyond “because it’s ugly.” I really don’t appreciate having my opinions misrepresented so please be careful with that. …” maus

Jonathan, I didn’t search out for a copy and paste quote, the comment in which you wrote that, but I believe that is what you wrote. At that same time, you wrote additionally, that instead of hi-vis color in city, your gear had some reflective bits on it.

Whether riding fast or slow, in the city or out, changing conditions on the road can leave people as vulnerable road users not readily discerned by people driving, whether attentive or inattentive.

Knowing when and under what conditions to take advantage of the benefits of using hi-vis gear, that includes color, reflectivity and lighting, is an important part of riding in the city and out of the city.

jeff bernards
8 years ago

A common complaint from car drivers is that can’t see bikers who dress in dark clothes. They’re asking us to please wear bright clothes. I thank them for telling us what will help them see us. Playing some kind of reverse-perverse psychology that I’m giving in by helping them see me is? weill stupid. Do everything you can to be seen. I have yellow rain pants, I feel like i’m waving a yellow flag down the road, so what? They see me, clearly I’m safer than someone wearing a black rainsuit, anyday. I like to use every safety tool available and Hi-Viz is one of those tools, everyone should use, for the safety of all.

davemess
davemess
8 years ago

Jonathan, I really don’t understand your helmet distinction between a “training”-type of ride and commuting. A few mph in speed?

To clarify, the difference is essentially you’re making a statement?

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)
Admin
Reply to  davemess

davemess asked:

“Jonathan, I really don’t understand your helmet distinction between a “training”-type of ride and commuting. A few mph in speed? “

Think of it this way: When I’m on vacation in Florida driving a convertible along the coast I am happy to just have my seat belt buckled and enjoy the ride. But when I visit a race track to race a high-powered go-cart I put on a five-point harness, flame-retardant jumpsuit, and a full-face helmet.

The distinction is the activity itself.

My commute/city bike is a big (2+-inch tires) and slow and upright bike. I had it built that way specifically so I wouldn’t ride fast, so I would be encouraged to talk with people, enjoy the scenes rolling past me, and so on. It’s a very safe bike and I ride it very safely.

Compare that with the majority of riders you see in Portland: They are riding skinny-tired road bikes, hunched over, and passing people left-and-right. If I rode like that I’d wear a helmet too… because it’s much more dangerous!

Does that clarify?

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
8 years ago
Reply to  drew

I don’t think the strident arguments are against hi-viz gear, per se, but rather against the prescription of hi-viz as the cure for driver inattention—to the extent that we start blaming those who are run over because the weren’t wearing day-glo colors, even in conditions where drivers should have seen them without hi-viz. There are plenty of cases of hi-viz-wearers being run over anyway—I was hit once while wearing bright orange during 9-am daylight—so its true value is debatable, but I don’t think we should be actively discouraging anyone from using it. We should not, however, treat it as a panacea and let drivers off the hook for running over people that didn’t happen to be wearing their hi-viz clothes at the moment.

I think there is also a distinction to be made between hi-viz as “day-glo” and hi-viz as “reflective”. I think wsbob alludes to this in his comment above. My personal opinion is that reflective clothing or accessories at night are of vastly higher value than day-glo clothing during daylight.

caesar
caesar
8 years ago
Reply to  El Biciclero

“We should not…let drivers off the hook for running over people that didn’t happen to be wearing their hi-viz clothes at the moment.”

Please refer us to one documented case wherein the driver who struck a cyclist was let “off the hook” because the cyclist wasn’t wearing high viz.

gutterbunnybikes
gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  caesar

Hasn’t happened YET! and thirty years ago helmet use was never brought up as part of collision reports either. Once the ball starts rolling there is little to do to stop it.

caesar
caesar
8 years ago

Ah, the old Slippery Slope ruse…yes, I see now.

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
8 years ago
Reply to  caesar

I didn’t say we should stop letting drivers off the hook, just that it isn’t something we should do. Insinuating that a pedestrian or cyclist who wasn’t wearing hi-viz gear wasn’t living up to their responsibility to “be safe”, gives ammunition to assign at least part of the blame to them. We already bend over backwards to exonerate drivers when they run over people (especially when the people they run over are adults on bicycles); we don’t need any further reasons to do so.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago
Reply to  El Biciclero

“…rather against the prescription of hi-viz as the cure for driver inattention…” bic

Tell us who it is that you believe has ever suggested that use of hi-viz gear by people as vulnerable road users, is a cure for driver inattention. The facts I think, are that no person or group has ever made such a suggestion, or remotely implied that use of hi-vis could ever function as such a cure.

Informed use of hi-vis is just a simple, economical way for people as vulnerable road users to enhance their safety by helping other road users more readily see them on the road.

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

Why does anyone need to be “more readily seen”? Maybe I’ll change it to “…the cure for drivers not paying enough attention.”

The fact is that any legally operating bicyclist, i.e., who uses light and reflector on their bike at night, should be visible to any driver, regardless of what clothing they are wearing. “…[H]elping other road users more readily see them on the road” sounds like “grabbing attention“, because not enough was being focused where it should be.

When we say “wear bright stuff to be seen”, the casual citizen reads two messages: “if you wear bright stuff, you’ll be seen” (i.e., driver inattention is “cured”), and “if you get run over when you’re not wearing hi-viz, it is because you weren’t wearing hi-viz, not because the driver wasn’t paying attention” (i.e., you failed to grab the driver’s attention with hi-viz wear).

9watts
9watts
8 years ago
Reply to  wsbob

“Tell us who it is that you believe has ever suggested that use of hi-viz gear by people as vulnerable road users, is a cure for driver inattention.”

Well, Trimet’s campaigns amount to this. So does the recently discussed campaign from PBOT. They are not—I repeat not—paying much attention whatsoever to the contributions by drivers’ lack of attention or failure to throttle their speed, but instead are devoting most or all of their efforts to the idea that wearing high viz will solve the problem. The proof is in the pudding.

oliver
oliver
8 years ago

Interesting, in the Family Feud survey, not one person said “run a stop sign”

GlenK
GlenK
8 years ago
Reply to  oliver

Australia makes much greater use of GIVE WAY (YIELD) signs (STOPs are relatively rare), so a bike can roll through after checking the way is clear.

oliver
oliver
8 years ago
Reply to  GlenK

Advantage AU.

davemess
davemess
8 years ago
Reply to  GlenK

And they have a lot of roundabouts.

Lenny Anderson
Lenny Anderson
8 years ago

I believe that just as in Minnesota, gas tax distribution favors rural counties here in Oregon. Same with school funds. It may be that to get the votes necessary to raise the gas tax, rural areas will continue to get a good deal. Something for BikePortland to cover as the debate gets underway.

jeff bernards
8 years ago
Reply to  Lenny Anderson

Our food comes from there, I’m willing to allow this to continue to some degree. I just don’t like subsidizing studded tire use in Eastern Oregon, that’s the part that really bothers me more (in case you didn’t know)

Twistyaction
Twistyaction
8 years ago
Reply to  jeff bernards

I’ve decided to refuse taxis that show up with studded tires in Portland. Stop the insanity!

gutterbunnybikes
gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  Twistyaction

well, lets see how many cabs you can get to OHSU/VA/Doernbechers when it does snow around here.

You might not realize it, but if the weather gets too bad the cabs will only take emergency calls, many if not most going to Pill Hill.

For example, Red Cross is one of (well use to be when I worked there can’t say for sure now) Radio Cabs biggest clients. I’ve delivered blood and organs to Pill Hill when I was a hack.

Should snow hit or the rains turn to ice, are those people needing such things are suppose to wait till the cabs can get their tires changed? Before you answer that realize organs are often delivered while people are already on the table.

davemess
davemess
8 years ago

or use one of the other hospitals in Portland. And OHSU is actually building a lot of their new patient services on the water front (sadly not ER yet). I get what you’re saying, but should these freak occurrences (don’t get that weather very often) dictate our entire regional road policy? I’d much rather just have OHSU get its own plow and (gasp) think about using road salt.

gutterbunnybikes
gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  davemess

It’s more than just that. Cabs drive people all over the NW. When I drove I had fares going to Newport, Bend, Eugene, and Olympia and just about everywhere in between. I knew of drivers that boasted of trips to San Francisco, Vancouver BC (pre 911) and Pendleton.

People break down or slide into a ditch on the way to MT. Hood or up on Skyline when the rest of city is dry, cabs come and get them. They have to be prepared for any of the potential weather conditions in the NW, or they lose money. And trust me, it’s not easy making a living driving cab.

jeff bernards
8 years ago

there’s always studdless tires that will perform nearly equally as well as studded tires. It’s not studs or nothing, there are other choices that work.

gutterbunnybikes
gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  davemess

BTW….not everyone get to choose their hospital.

Jonathan Gordon
Jonathan Gordon
8 years ago

Studded tires are banned in Minnesota, a state well accustomed to snow, and they get by just fine. I recently was driven between Denver/Glenwood Springs in December in a car without studded tires but good snow tires. On both trips there was a snow storm. We rode over Vail Pass and several others and had absolutely no issue with traction.

The idea that the good folks of Oregon can’t possibly manage without studded tires seems ludicrous to me.

Huey Lewis
Huey Lewis
8 years ago

I’m in no way defending studded tires. I think they’re ridiculous. But in Minnesota they salted (or whatever chemical madness they use) the roads like crazy. And plowed. And it would often be *really* cold and the ice never seemed that slick when it was cold.

Pete
Pete
8 years ago

I lived in the gorge for over a decade (and still do, part time) with a steep driveway, AWD station wagon, and Bridgestone Blizzaks. There were times my neighbor couldn’t get his Subaru up the same driveway with studded tires while I did just fine with the Blizzaks. That studs are needed for the iciest of conditions is a myth, but there’s definitely a point at which only chains or traction straps will work (and that’s when you really don’t want to drive anyway – or walk, for that matter).

was carless
was carless
8 years ago
Reply to  jeff bernards

Over 95% of all food consumed in Portland is imported from out of state.

Jon
Jon
8 years ago
Reply to  Lenny Anderson

Pretty much everything in rural parts of any state is subsidized by the urban areas. Phone, power, road, schools, law enforcement, etc. I grew up in rural California and saw it first hand. Jobs are hard to find and pay very little in rural areas because the work can pretty much be done by anyone with a high school education or less.

James
James
8 years ago

Such a crazy game. Loved the victory spin by Michael Bennett.

Jonathan Gordon
Jonathan Gordon
8 years ago

The article on Kitzhaber firing the coal opponent as well as the follow-up is really eye-opening. And maddening.

Peter W
Peter W
8 years ago

The fact that Kitz fired the head of the powerful Oregon Transportation Commission for either a) opposing a coal project or b) doing her by providing oversight rather than acting as a rubber stamp is quite disturbing and deserves more than just a short mention here.

The story should bring up questions about:

– whether members of public boards appointed by Kitzhaber really represent the interests of the public or rather the interests of the Governor

– the ability of the OTC to serve as effective oversight of transportation spending

– the extent of Kitzhaber’s “opposition” to coal. At first glance this isn’t bike-related, but given Kitzhaber’s supposed concern for health and the environment, if he is willing to bend to the interests of one of the most despised industries in Oregon, how can we expect him to push for progress for health and the environment when it comes to active transportation if a less despised industry, like the auto/gas lobby, opposes that progress?

Pete
Pete
8 years ago

PBOT should launch a campaign encouraging moonwalking bears to wear hi-viz clothing. This would be more effective than than their last campaign encouraging drivers to use turn signals. Oh wait, when was that?

noah
noah
8 years ago

I inform drivers they’ve parked in the bike lane by calling the parking enforcement hotline. To each their own — although I suppose my method only works in a city like Portland where they’ll actually do the enforcement.

davemess
davemess
8 years ago
Reply to  noah

and that the person is still there by the time parking enforcement finally gets there.

q`Tzal
q`Tzal
8 years ago

“What is something annoying that an American driver might do?”:
() Kill over 30,000 people per year and pretend it didn’t happen or that’s just the cost of modern society.

greg byshenk
greg byshenk
8 years ago

drew
It’s hard for me to understand the strident arguments out there against hi viz wear.

I don’t know that there are a lot of arguments against people wearing hi-viz clothing — if that’s what they like to do. And I don’t think anyone has ever attacked someone else for choosing to wear such.

What I think at least some people object to is the idea that, in order to be “safe”, cyclists -should- wear hi-viz clothing. There are at least two problems with this. First, it encourages the thought that someone who is injured while wearing normal clothing was at least partly at fault, as they were not wearing “safe” clothing. Second, it discourages cycling by suggesting that one cannot just cycle if one only has normal clothing, because doing so is unsafe.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago
Reply to  greg byshenk

“…the idea that, in order to be “safe”, cyclists -should- wear hi-viz clothing. …” greg byshenk

Whether someone biking can enhance their safety on the road by wearing hi-vis, depends on the road conditions. If a particular road condition or conditions calls for the person riding to take various means, which may include use of hi-vis to enhance their safety, and they don’t do it, they certainly could reasonably be considered to be partly at fault.

Of all the reasons some people may list to decide that riding a bike on the road in traffic amongst motor vehicles, isn’t safe, it hardly seems that the suggestions made to use hi-vis when riding, would be very high on such a list.

caesar
caesar
8 years ago
Reply to  greg byshenk

” First, it encourages the thought that someone who is injured while wearing normal clothing was at least partly at fault, as they were not wearing “safe” clothing. Second, it discourages cycling by suggesting that one cannot just cycle if one only has normal clothing, because doing so is unsafe.”

Any statistics / data / studies to support this opinion?

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
8 years ago
Reply to  caesar

“Be seen, be safe. (be flashy, be shiny, be reflective)”. The very name of this safety campaign suggests that to be safe, you must be seen, and to be seen you must wear flashy, day-glo, reflective whatever. This leads to the conclusion that “wearing hi-viz makes you safe”. Now students of logic know that to say “if you wear hi-viz, you are being safe” is not equivalent to “if you don’t wear hi-viz, you’re not being safe”, but the general public does not contain many students of logic by my observation.

Mossby Pomegrante
Mossby Pomegrante
8 years ago

I love hi-viz clothing and white hot super blinky lights!

Bella Bici
8 years ago

Regarding the Bike-share Savior?, NYT article, this stands out:

“When you go in extreme areas on the planet, you can vividly see that we’re really destroying the planet,” Mr. Rodi recalled. A globe-trotting adventurer, he has climbed the highest mountain on every continent, visited the North and South Poles and rowed more than 5,000 miles across the Indian Ocean. “I started to get conscious about this,” he said.

It’s precisely indulgent behavior like this which partially lay at fault.

Maybe Mr. Rodi’s acquisition of PBSC Urban Solutions is his personal effort at purchasing an indulgence for his profligate energy consumptive life. It may possibly assuage his green-guilt the next time he jets on down to the Antarctic to see penguins frolic. He’ll now know that all those people pedaling his bike-share bikes will be offsetting his carbon consumption.

BTW, what ever happened to that blatant indulgence? You know, buying carbon offsets. Seems like the Catholic Church should be the head of that. They have lots of practice.

wsbob
wsbob
8 years ago

Upbeat, local news about a Washington County neighborhood connectivity effort most recently reported about in today’s Oregonian:

http://www.oregonlive.com/aloha/index.ssf/2015/01/proposed_aloha-area_bicycle_an.html

And here’s the link to a document with a map on pg. 26, showing where the bridge will go, and indicating a neighborhood area it will connect with:

http://www.co.washington.or.us/LUT/PlanningProjects/alohareedville/StudyInformation/upload/Washington-Co_Augusta-Lane-HIA-Report_FINAL.pdf

Kind of hard to see it from the map, but the creek poses an obstacle to walking and biking to the grade school and conceivably other points to the north and west, for a big residential neighborhood. The proposed bike pedestrian bridge will create a car free route off road, across the creek, at least partly through a natural area. Big, five hundred foot long, fifteen foot wide bridge if I’ve browsed the info correctly so far.

Project pitch mentions the bridge aiding access to the nature park east of 170th. Safe crossing of this road on foot (where on the map, the dotted red line indicates.) really should have something like a pedestrian activated flashing yellow light signal.

Pete
Pete
8 years ago

About bike-lane parking, there are stickers for that, though the ethics and effectiveness of their use is up for debate: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/bike-blog/2014/sep/29/bike-lane-sticker-campaign-canada-uk

(Let’s just say there’s a certain church not far from here whose congregation was previously guilty of clogging the lane across the street, but I haven’t seen it since a certain ‘educational’ incident I’m not at liberty to discuss… 😉

Granpa
Granpa
8 years ago

In nature high viz is employed for the same reason (some) cyclists use it, and also for reasons cyclists eschew it. Poison dart frogs which exude poisons from their skin as a defensive measure, and Monarch butterflies which are unpalatable wear bright colors to alert and warn of danger. The toxic critters are have evolved this warning mechanism through genetic trial and error with the dominant influence moving ever toward brighter more high visibility appearance as a survival mechanism. In this light it appears High Viz has precedent set as being effective. In another regard high viz is brought into play in nature to adorn (usually) the male of species where it is employed to attract mates. When viewed through this lens the objections to cyclist’s bright attire becomes apparent. The high viz clothing available to cyclists it ugly and not likely to enhance the likelihood of mating. Cycling is transportation and it is a social pastime, so appearance cannot be discounted in the realm of one of humanities’ most primal urges.

Then there is in nature camouflage. Stalking or lurking predators use difficult to see colors. (Anyone we know?) Prey species frequently also wear camouflage. Many of these are quick, alert and agile and depend on their deftness to avoid death.

So wear what you want. There is a good reason for any choice you make, and each is tested and proven.

CaptainKarma
8 years ago

I wonder why hunters wear high-vis?

Granpa
Granpa
8 years ago
Reply to  CaptainKarma

Deer hunters use high viz so they don’t get shot by trigger happy shooters who wish they were sportsmen. Apparently the blaze orange is a color deer don’t see well. Bird hunters still don’t want to be shot by other shooters, but birds see color just fine and turkey hunters disappear into the landscape like gray rocks.