Washington County Sheriffs seek reckless driver who hit and injured bicycle rider

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7S9Mv33XcPw
(Video of suspect taken by a witness and released by Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office)

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office needs help finding reckless driver who hit an innocent person, gave them the finger, then fled the scene. The victim was on a bicycle and had stopped on the side of the road to check his map.

The crash happened Saturday (5/11) around 2:00 pm on NW Hillside Road in unincorporated Washington County, southwest of Banks.

Here’s more from the official statement:

“According to witness reports, an unidentified man was driving a newer Mercedes convertible around 2:00 p.m. on NW Hillside Road when he hit a bicyclist stopped on the shoulder. The victim was checking his map when the unidentified driver hit him somewhere near the intersection with NW Clapshaw Hill Road. The victim was knocked to the ground, his clothing torn and was bleeding from the leg. The suspect drove off, making no attempt to stop and check on him, and gave the bicyclist ‘the finger’ as he drove off.”

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The Sheriff’s Office says the suspect was seen by other witnesses driving recklessly, swerving into oncoming lanes of traffic. “A motorcyclist told deputies he was almost run off the road and nearly hit by the same driver on NW Old Clapshaw Hill Road,” the statement reads.

The video above of the suspect vehicle was taken by one of the witnesses.

Please be on the lookout for a white man in his 60 wearing a baseball cap with a thick “Tom Selleck mustache” driving a newer, champagne-colored Mercedes convertible.

Anyone with information about this vehicle or driver is asked to contact the Washington County Sheriff’s Office by calling non-emergency dispatch at 503-629-0111.

UPDATE, 5/16: The suspect, 55-year-old William Offinga, has been arrested and booked into the Washington County Jail on one count of reckless driving and one count of felony hit and run.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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dwk
dwk
3 years ago

***Comment deleted by moderator***

Pat Lowell
Pat Lowell
3 years ago

The real question should be, did he have California plates? (sorry, sorry!)

MATT SAVAGE
MATT SAVAGE
3 years ago
Reply to  Pat Lowell

Actually he was from Detroit, hence the Tigers cap, then Virginia… Wound up in Hawaii via the Navy.

Pat Lowell
Pat Lowell
3 years ago

Thanks to the victim and witnesses for reporting this – so sorry this happened to you. Hopefully they can find this a-hole — can’t be that many people who would buy a car in that godawful champagne color.

dwk
dwk
3 years ago

I you think that the MAGA culture is a problem for people on bikes and everyone else..
Sorry.

Jason H
Jason H
3 years ago
Reply to  dwk

The problem is more with the politics of car culture and entitlement, not MAGA culture IMO. Been buzzed by nearly the same number of Prius’ and Legacy wagons as jacked trucks out in Wa. Co.

But if you think it would help – maybe for country rides someone should re-print replica Tour de Trump leaders jerseys. It has the Trump name large on front and rear BUT is also hot Rapha Style neon pink (I kid you not).

comment image

Brian
Brian
3 years ago
Reply to  Jason H

My experience as of late in Portland/Beaverton is that drivers of luxury autos (BMW, Audi, Lexus, etc) and Prius’ have been way more a-holey than the stereoptypical-MAGA-big truck drivers.

Brian
Brian
3 years ago
Reply to  Brian

Case in point. Saw a ton of trucks in downtown yesterday due to the massive amount of construction. No issues. Descending a hill in the rain a newer model Acura passes me on the right and then immediately cuts me off to get to a parking spot on the left. I guess that parking spot was more important than me getting home safely. Luckily, I was already braking to get some moisture off the wheels “just in case.”

bikeninja
bikeninja
3 years ago
Reply to  Jason H

Speaking of republicans, From the description ( especially the age and bushy mustache) I think I figured out the culprit. It is John Bolton ( Trumps National Security Advisor) out for a holiday in Wine Country . Weary of threatening and intimidating countries around the world, to no avail, he decided to take out his temper on innocent Washington County cyclists.

Middle of the Road Guy
Middle of the Road Guy
3 years ago
Reply to  dwk

Do you think that everyone whole voted for Trump espouses MAGA culture (whatever that is). Some people voted for him simply because he’s not a Democrat.

BradWagon
3 years ago

Where was voting mentioned anywhere here? … Defensive much?

Q
Q
3 years ago
Reply to  BradWagon

MoRG being a trumpie definitely provides motivation for his antisocial behavior. Sad.

Hello, Kitty
Hello, Kitty
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

Please cut out the personal attacks. You’ve been doing it more frequently lately. Please stop.

Q
Q
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

Hello, Kitty
Please cut out the personal attacks. You’ve been doing it more frequently lately. Please stop.Recommended 6

Keep on attacking every comment on every topic on this blog though, that’s totally appropriate.

Hello, Kitty
Hello, Kitty
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

No. Personal attacks are not appropriate. Period.

Middle of The Road Guy
Middle of The Road Guy
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

I didn’t vote for Trump. More worrisome to me is that you assume anyone who has an opinion contrary to yours is somehow a Trumpster. That kind of binary thinking (us or them) is cause for alarm.

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago

Anyone who voted for Trump and couldn’t see that he was/is a phony con-man who despises environmental protections (which many cyclists support) deserves to have their character questioned. Framing Trump as some sort of casual or accidental choice is disingenuous, to put it mildly.

If this suspect had obvious pro-Trump postings, it’s no stretch to assume he thinks cyclists are a bunch of “green weenies,” etc. I saw a picture of him with a fish and rednecky garb, but didn’t dig too far.

Toby Keith
Toby Keith
3 years ago

Getting facts and accurate descriptions out there is one thing, but allowing stereotyping about political affiliations or whatever is pretty lame. Jonathan I know you work hard to keep this place as sane as possible but the moderation could use some work, and I know that you censor here and there. Sorry not trying to agitate you.

Middle of the Road Guy
Middle of the Road Guy
3 years ago
Reply to  dwk

What are you trying to say?

Toby Keith
Toby Keith
3 years ago
Reply to  dwk

Hey excellent stereotyping! Because we know there is no such thing as a wealthy Democrat!

dwk
dwk
3 years ago
Reply to  Toby Keith

Stereotypes are for a reason…
J. Maus himself says he rides with an American Flag on his bike in the country.
Why would that be?
What do wealthy democrats have to do with this?

bikeninja
bikeninja
3 years ago

Magnum P.I. gone Bad. Sounds like we need to send in the” A team” to catch this criminal.

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
3 years ago
Reply to  bikeninja

Heh. And maybe MacGyver could do a little “troubleshooting” and get to the bottom of things.

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
3 years ago
Reply to  bikeninja

This just gives all Mercedes drivers a bad name.

Tim
Tim
3 years ago

Sounds like another insecure little boy suffering from entitlement syndrome. He hates cyclists to the point he tries to murder a stranger because they are going happily though their life without the need to prove there manhood by driving a more expensive car.

The finger should be enough to send him to prison for attempted murder, but since he used a car I suspect he will be allowed plead to a traffic infraction.

Someone knows who this is. Do they have the decency to do the right thing?

Q
Q
3 years ago
Reply to  Tim

The question I have is, why are the police interested in this one case while ignoring the vast majority of drivers who act like this?

bikeninja
bikeninja
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

This guy would be an ordinary commuter on my morning ride from the Goose Hollow Max Station to North Portland, and the cops would not be interested in him. But believe it or not out in Washington County (where I live), they actually enforce traffic laws. Recently I saw a Washington County Sheriff pull up and direct a landscaping crew to clean up the bike lane where they had blown sticks, leaves and grass.

J_R
J_R
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

Because it is the Washington County Sheriff’s office, not the Portland Police Bureau.

Brian
Brian
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

Maybe it’s also the “hit and run” crime committed, and not just reckless driving. Sounds like the dude was drunk to me.

BradWagon
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

Likely because he was also driving recklessly around other vehicles. Reckless driving around cyclists is just an accepted risk in the eyes of law enforcement… but endanger someone else in their metal box?! Now we have a problem.

Also, the hit and run.

Hello, Kitty
Hello, Kitty
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

>>> why are the police interested in this one case while ignoring the vast majority of drivers who act like this? <<<

Because the vast majority of drivers do not act like this. From the description, this guy committed a deliberate, unprovoked assault.

Q
Q
3 years ago
Reply to  Hello, Kitty

Nice work deliberately misstating what was said just so you could force an argument. Next.

Tim
Tim
3 years ago
Reply to  Q

“and gave the bicyclist ‘the finger’ as he drove off.”

I am not a DA, but I think I a jury would take this to mean it was deliberate.

Editz
Editz
3 years ago

It’s got a good beat and you can dance to it.

Middle of the Road Guy
Middle of the Road Guy
3 years ago
Reply to  Editz

Paul’s Boutique is severely underrated.

Que
Que
3 years ago

Underrated? It went double platinum twenty years ago and regularly appears on various Greatest Albums lists..

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Que

It was underrated when it first came out, but an obvious classic now.

Jason H
Jason H
3 years ago

I was out very near there on Kansas City Rd. own Sat. just 90 minutes or so after this incident. Nothing happened to me luckily, but it sticks in my mind that I saw something that left me with the impression “that person is driving like *hit with that nice a car” but nothing that made me note the make of car or a big ‘stache involved. The unusual thing is that the one report from the motorcyclist was on OLD Clapshaw Hill, which is narrow and gravel, if he was driving recklessly there I guess he doesn’t really care about his display of wealth.

If you’re on Strada and want to give David some much deserved kudos for a tough day and then a tough 20 mile ride home after: https://www.strava.com/activities/2360096117

And mainstream story (that is sympathetic!) with interview https://www.kgw.com/article/news/crime/hit-and-run-driver-strikes-bicyclist-flips-him-off-in-washington-county-deputies-say/283-47a510b3-f5bf-4886-a39e-4d3b43def127

Edward
Edward
3 years ago

The real question is whether or not they’ll go the extra step to get cell-phone tracking data from the major carriers to actually figure out who this is. It’s time consuming, but it’s completely data possible. There’s a finite number of people out there in that area at that time. Get the list from the carriers. Cross reference with who owns that type of vehicle.

Hello, Kitty
Hello, Kitty
3 years ago
Reply to  Edward

Is that legal without a warrant? I sure hope not.

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago

As a side note, isn’t it neat how we have passing zones on roads with no shoulders?? Where are bicyclists supposed to go when a car coming directly towards them?

I was almost vaporized on Scotch Church Rd in the same general vicinity (here: https://tinyurl.com/yxg3l6o3) by a driver making a pass in the opposite direction and I only escaped by skidding off into the ditch. Can’t imagine what would have happened to me at my 20mph plus the driver’s 60mph.

I suggested to the County that passing lanes shouldn’t be allowed on roads where there is no shoulder, but they indicated that state and Federal guidelines do not even consider bicyclists when determining passing zones so there’s nothing they can do about it.

I’m curious whether the road where this happened has a wide enough shoulder that the cyclist could have been off the road more, or if they would have been squeezed up against the fog line like I was.

J_R
J_R
3 years ago
Reply to  Dan A

According to the article, the bicyclist was stopped on the shoulder. The driver targeted the cyclist.
What does the existence of a passing zone have to do with any of this? Do you think that all roads should have a double yellow stripe and be posted NO PASSING unless they have a shoulder? Do you think that would be obeyed?

Jason H
Jason H
3 years ago
Reply to  Dan A

It happened aproximately here: https://tinyurl.com/y6b7eq9w

This is a VERY rural area orders of magnitude more quiet that the WAZE-enabled cut through routes near the highways like Scotch Church is. Clapshaw Hill, even the paved newer road doesn’t even have painted center-line let alone shoulders. But it is a blind corner with a steep drop-off on Hillside. I imagine what happened was the a-hole took the left turn too wide at too much speed onto Hillside and clipped David. Luckily he was standing off on the unpaved shoulder instead of in the lane or this would have been a much sadder story.

Expecting all shoulder-less roads to be non-passing is too much to ask honestly. Most roads in the Tualatin Valley are straight, flat old farm roads. They (should) have plenty of visibility for passing carefully at the speeds they were designed for rural traffic 50-70-100 years ago. It’s the idiots treating them like secondary freeways nowadays that are the problem. Automatic speed enforcement would be a much more productive means to calming them. Also, at least our county roads department is somewhat progressive, adding shoulders to many high volume rural roads when they get repaved, like Verboort, River Rd., Golf Course Rd. etc, and the traffic slowing roundabouts at intersections they’ve been installing frequently. Route planning apps that rely on actual cycling trip data like Komoot, Strava heat maps and Garmin Connect can help you find alternate routes away from the busiest streets.

BradWagon
3 years ago
Reply to  Jason H

In my riding which is often on roads like this drivers do not consider on coming cyclists at all when passing other vehicles, farm equipment, or most commonly other cyclists. So the narrative of there being good sightlines is meaningless when drivers just flat out don’t care. What should be more heavily enforced is no passing of cyclists across double yellow centerlines.

Jason H
Jason H
3 years ago
Reply to  BradWagon

I agree, some careless drivers do not consider cyclists as oncoming traffic to check for when passing either a car or another cyclist (though a number do pass slowly and with caution after checking it’s clear). In the Oregon Safe Passing law though they are required to do so and any act of passing that results in an injury collision is considered prima facie evidence of their recklessness. This applies whether there is a double solid, a dashed or even no centerline.

Regardless, the same law does make it clear that with that responsibility it is NOT specifically unlawful to pass a cyclist in a double-yellow striped zone, just not a motor vehicle. So what you’re asking for isn’t enforceable currently if there is no collision.

From Ray Thomas:

“…the law does not specifically prohibit passing a rider or group of riders in a no passing zone; instead it attempts to hold a driver responsible for an attempt to pass in a no-passing zone which results in an injury collision, either by the driver failing to yield to oncoming traffic or driving too close to the persons on bicycles.”

https://bikeportland.org/2014/01/06/get-legal-with-ray-thomas-oregons-safe-passing-law-explained-99506

Tim
Tim
3 years ago
Reply to  Jason H

Passing on rural 2 lane roads is normal for people who drive rural two lane roads. You don’t need to follow the horse or the tractor for miles. The problem comes up when you have people who feel entitled to drive at their desired speed and are unaccustomed to driving on two lane roads. If there is another vehicle going slower than they want to go they just use the other lane to go around. It never occurs to them that the other lane is not for their exclusive use.

I had four drivers pass us Sunday when there was oncoming traffic and another Monday morning when I was doing 25 on a residential street. This seams to be a problem in rural areas near large american cities. I have not had this problem in truly rural areas or riding in Europe.

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Jason H

I didn’t ask the engineer if they would make all-shoulderless roads to be non-passing; I asked whether the passing zone in that location on Scotch Church was necessary, considering that it’s only 400 yards long and sitting in between a roundabout and a signaled intersection, and it is heavily used by cyclists to go east-west. One less cyclist than before, though. I won’t ride it anymore.

K'Tesh
K'Tesh
3 years ago

What’s the difference between that driver and a porcupine?

One’s a prick, and the other is a porcupine.

I hope he rots in jail when they catch him.

Glenn II
Glenn II
3 years ago

“It is unknown why the man was completely cloaked in 80s signifiers.”

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  MantraPDX

Lots of fun Trump memes on his FB page. Cheers to those who guessed correctly.

MantraPDX
MantraPDX
3 years ago
Reply to  Dan A

Yeah, his FB page is a real treat, isn’t it?

dwk
dwk
3 years ago
Reply to  Dan A

My original post was deleted after it was presumed to be “political”..
This is the problem in this era, if the media (and this is the media) just ignores this problem they normalize what is happening.
This is not political, it is real and it is a threat.

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
3 years ago

Wow. Now there’s one aspect of traffic law that actually might make sense: you can bully and threaten and harass and intimidate, then take off and it’s seemingly just a big shrug and an “oh, well”. BUT if you actually make contact with somebody, and then take off—felony. As long as they can catch you, which in this case it looks like they did.

Nice job, WashCo. Sheriff!

Glenn II
Glenn II
3 years ago
Reply to  El Biciclero

Menacing is a thing too though. It’s the misdemeanor in between “nothing” and “felony.” No physical contact needed: https://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/163.190

Hello, Kitty
Hello, Kitty
3 years ago
Reply to  Glenn II

I suspect proving menacing in a driving situation is difficult. Did that driver menace me, or did she just pass me a little closer than I’m comfortable with?

With hit-and-run, there is a more objective definition (driver made contact, and did not stop) and often concrete evidence of what happened (perhaps a smashed car mirror in this case).

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago

The suspect, Bill Offinga, appears to own a fire sprinkler business.

A hypothetical motive is being chronically annoyed with cyclists on rural roads (who CAN be annoying if they ride IN the road) and potentially being drunk. Bad moves.

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

To add insult to hitting the rider, he gave him the offinger.

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

Why is it annoying for cyclists to ride IN the road? Where are they supposed to ride?

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
3 years ago
Reply to  Dan A

Duh. “Somewhere else”.

Jesse
Jesse
3 years ago

William Offinga in court. Appears his fiancé is now his ex-fiance.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bAHCZkM-mmA&t=8s

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago

Dan A
Why is it annoying for cyclists to ride IN the road? Where are they supposed to ride?Recommended 0

I’m referring to taking up the whole lane and not letting (faster) cars get by. I see it in downtown Portland and it seems unsafe and obnoxious. I only venture far enough into the lane to avoid unexpected car doors opening.

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

In downtown there are usually multiple lanes going in the same direction, cyclists are mostly moving as fast as the timed lights allow, and the door zone extends about 5 or 6 feet away from parked cars. Maybe you have a better example?

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago

Dan A
In downtown there are usually multiple lanes going in the same direction, cyclists are mostly moving as fast as the timed lights allow, and the door zone extends about 5 or 6 feet away from parked cars. Maybe you have a better example?Recommended 1

A good example is Fairview Blvd going downhill toward Washington Park. It’s notorious for cyclists and skateboarders blocking cars, often at night without lights on thrill-rides. Any time a cyclist is in the middle of a road and forces a car to go below the speed limit, trouble is brewing. Some weirdo on a skateboard literally wiped out 3 times in front of me on Fairview approaching Kingston, and seemed oblivious to the risk as he slalomed back and forth (this was daytime).

As a cyclist who also drives downtown, I’ve had minor road rage when these people thwart green light timing and could simply move over with enough room for cars to pass. There are painted green lanes I respect, but the rest of the street should give cars the right of way. It obviously depends on street-width and context, but it’s done too often in an arrogant way. Common sense says when you’re smaller and/or slower, don’t block something bigger and faster! The driver behind you might get tailgated or have weak brakes, so if they bowl you over it’s your own naivety.

Hello, Kitty
Hello, Kitty
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

I’m curious to know if you think a bike rider should put themselves in any danger to get out of your way (like riding in the door zone), or if you think they should only get out of your way if it can be done safely?

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago
Reply to  Hello, Kitty

You folks are missing the fine detail. On many streets you can be outside the door zone but not too far into the road, and you vary the distance as needed. It’s just not safe to be directly in front of cars unless you can easily match their speed, better yet exceed it. This really requires photos and videos for context.

Hello, Kitty
Hello, Kitty
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

If there’s insufficient room for a car to pass safely, it’s far safer to be directly in front than off to the side where maaaaaybe the driver could squeeze by. If there’s not room, it doesn’t really matter where I position myself from a “slowing you down” perspective.

If there is room to safely pass, and there’s no hazards preventing me moving over, then of course I’d do it.

This is hardly ever an issue downtown. I can’t speak to your other example.

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

It sounds to me like you are a bit newer to cycling. You may find this video helpful.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPA-ZcYGT94

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

A driver having to go BELOW the speed LIMIT for a few blocks? Oh the humanity.

When I take the lane, I’m doing it for my family, not my ego. May you never hit a door on a steep downhill.

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago
Reply to  Dan A

It depends how far below the limit (5 MPH pushes many people’s patience) and I’m putting it more in the context of bike-rider safety. You may have more faith in drivers than I do. Too many are distracted and impatient, though Portland is politer than other towns.

I also noted earlier that the vehicle directly behind you isn’t the only issue. They may have someone pushing them, including a heavy truck that could shove them right into you. If cars are too thick, I ride on sidewalks where it’s legal (yes, I know about driveway hazards). Another reason for being on sidewalks is to not be in their blind spot when a tall vehicle is turning.

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago

Dan A
It sounds to me like you are a bit newer to cycling. You may find this video helpful.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPA-ZcYGT94Recommended 0

That’s a good video and I get it. I mainly just stay away from cars as much as possible, feeling far more fragile than them on a bike. The Springwater trail is my idea of what riding should be, minus the sketchy homeless camps and trail-blockers.

Again, I just think it’s unsafe in the realm of Murphy’s Law to FORCE cars to slow down, even if it’s technically legal. Just being within their reach is risky and the news story that prompted this discussion adds evidence.

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

The Springwater doesn’t go where I need to go, and is plenty dangerous when filled with walkers and dogs on leashes (not to mention the random attacks that have been occurring lately). If you’re going to ride for transportation, you’ll want to learn more about why experienced cyclists ride the way they do.

I strongly suggest reading “the Art of Cycling” by Robert Hurst. It has saved my bacon many times. I’d give you my copy, but I already gave it to another cyclist I care about.

And this is a really good article on taking the lane:

https://cyclingsavvy.org/road-cycling/

Personally, here are the main reasons where and why I take the lane:

* Descending at high speed, where I need room to maneuver around potential obstacles and I am going at or near the speed limit

* At 4-way stops, to lessen confusion among drivers at the other stop signs

* When preparing for a left or right turn

* When stopping at a signaled intersection where I need to be there to trigger the light

* When riding on a neighborhood greenway, through the center of the sharrows

* When avoiding door zones on residential streets

* When riding at the speed of traffic, e.g. downtown

*When approaching an intersection where the visibility is poor, and I want to be seen by drivers who have approached from the side

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago
Reply to  Dan A

RE https://cyclingsavvy.org/road-cycling/#impeding

While that site makes good points, it relies on some logical fallacies, like comparing delays without bikes to delays caused by bikes. All those delays add up and cyclists are gambling with their lives more than drivers.

Quote: “It’s rare for a bicyclist to cause more than 30 seconds of delay to passing motorists. On the other hand, traffic lights are often as long as 120 seconds. And delay from rush hour traffic jams like the one on the right can be measured in minutes or hours. There are no bicyclists on that road!”

The root problem is overpopulation and economic growth targets. Urban planners just reshuffle growth to maintain a pyramidal economy. I also wonder how many “green” bike commuters work for companies like Vestas, despoiling vast tracts of scenery for dubious CO2 reductions? Hypocrisy abounds and people get tribal, but I’m all for bikes in general.

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago

Dan A
The Springwater doesn’t go where I need to go, and is plenty dangerous when filled with walkers and dogs on leashes (not to mention the random attacks that have been occurring lately). If you’re going to ride for transportation, you’ll want to learn more about why experienced cyclists ride the way they do.I strongly suggest reading “the Art of Cycling” by Robert Hurst. It has saved my bacon many times. I’d give you my copy, but I already gave it to another cyclist I care about.And this is a really good article on taking the lane:https://cyclingsavvy.org/road-cycling/Personally, here are the main reasons where and why I take the lane:* Descending at high speed, where I need room to maneuver around potential obstacles and I am going at or near the speed limit* At 4-way stops, to lessen confusion among drivers at the other stop signs* When preparing for a left or right turn* When stopping at a signaled intersection where I need to be there to trigger the light* When riding on a neighborhood greenway, through the center of the sharrows* When avoiding door zones on residential streets* When riding at the speed of traffic, e.g. downtown*When approaching an intersection where the visibility is poor, and I want to be seen by drivers who have approached from the sideRecommended 1

Very true, but as stated several times, if you’re going FAST enough I don’t disagree, especially if you have a commute that makes city streets mandatory. My point is that I see cars as a stampede without mercy, full of distracted, impatient drivers. Insisting that they behave otherwise can be fatal, so I defer to their weight and momentum. Human nature is more expedient than virtuous.

Bikes aren’t allowed to use sidewalks in a large section of downtown, but you probably know it’s legal in many places if you’re reasonable about it. I use sidewalks if there are few pedestrians in sight and I’d rather not be next to cars with no barrier. I prefer them when I’m crawling up a hill and my steering is wobblier, e.g. riding from downtown to Washington Park. But riding downhill on a sidewalk isn’t fair to pedestrians because you’re too reliant on brakes.

“You can’t roller skate in a buffalo herd…” (Roger Miller)

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

How do you get from downtown to Washington Park via sidewalk? I just ride up the middle of Johnson to NW 24th, or up Jefferson through Goose Hollow.

FYI, a study in the 90s found that riders were 2x as likely to be involved in an intersection crash riding on the sidewalk than in the road. There’s a reason why it should only be done selectively.

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago

Dan A
How do you get from downtown to Washington Park via sidewalk? I just ride up the middle of Johnson to NW 24th, or up Jefferson through Goose Hollow.FYI, a study in the 90s found that riders were 2x as likely to be involved in an intersection crash riding on the sidewalk than in the road. There’s a reason why it should only be done selectively.Recommended 0

I mean Goose Hollow via Salmon and Park. Surely you don’t ride in the middle of streets uphill? This shows how easy it is to get hit by a car or crunched between them: https://goo.gl/maps/aB9a2eV4JGL9niBs6 Burnside to the north end of Washington Park is no better, with higher speeds: https://goo.gl/maps/7YaNo6pGZ7yKGiJ87

You can’t outrace cars and I don’t want to force them to a crawl and make manual drivers shift from neutral to 1st repeatedly. No smart pedestrian would be in the street either (same speed-differential issue). Watching for blind driveways, I’m far more relaxed on the sidewalk at slower speeds. But when I hit residential streets w/25 MPH limits I’m rarely on the sidewalk. It’s all context.

https://youtu.be/55Wb8exPj3o (stupid and rude, solo or in groups)

Dan A
Dan A
3 years ago
Reply to  Jack C.

Those are both very poor routes uphill, IMO. I take Park/Salmon down from the zoo, but going back up it’s far more practical to take Jefferson’s bike lane up to the Murray St/Park Pl bike path, or go up Johnson to 24th, and cross Burnside on the bike path in the NE corner of the park.

It’s curious that you’ve picked out a video of a pack of 20+ riders using the lane in an illegal manner (not 2 abreast, and riding well away from the side of the road for no reason) and compared it to cyclists’ legal right to be in the road, even on rural roads, as necessary. The fog line designates the edge of the road, not ‘where bikes should be’, and I’d wager that when there’s very little shoulder it’s safer to ride on the left of that line than on the right of it, because you have more wiggle room for obstacles and are more likely to get passed at a safe distance than 3 inches from your elbows.

Jack C.
Jack C.
3 years ago

Dan A
Those are both very poor routes uphill, IMO. I take Park/Salmon down from the zoo, but going back up it’s far more practical to take Jefferson’s bike lane up to the Murray St/Park Pl bike path, or go up Johnson to 24th, and cross Burnside on the bike path in the NE corner of the park.It’s curious that you’ve picked out a video of a pack of 20+ riders using the lane in an illegal manner (not 2 abreast, and riding well away from the side of the road for no reason) and compared it to cyclists’ legal right to be in the road, even on rural roads, as necessary. The fog line designates the edge of the road, not ‘where bikes should be’, and I’d wager that when there’s very little shoulder it’s safer to ride on the left of that line than on the right of it, because you have more wiggle room for obstacles and are more likely to get passed at a safe distance than 3 inches from your elbows.Recommended 0

It depends where you start from on a given day. I live in Raleigh Hills and usually do this when coming back from the east side through the middle of downtown. I’ve done the Jefferson-Murray route a few times but it’s usually too much of a detour. I also like Salmon-Park for the exercise factor and it’s a nice area. It works fine, I just don’t want to be in the road uphill next to cars.

Yes, that country lane mob is extreme but the arrogance displayed isn’t worlds apart from a lone rider or small group slowing traffic downtown and expecting people to have endless patience/awareness. Slower, lighter vehicles should rarely block heavier, faster ones for the safety and liability of everyone. Same deal when trail walkers block cyclists, who become analogous to cars.

This has been over-debated but thanks for the tips. I did pick up some good info.