Comments

At BikePortland, we think your comments are just as important as our stories. This page lists all comments made on BikePortland.org, with recent comments at the top.

If you love great comments as much as we do, check out our Comment of the Week column. Please help us find more great ones by simply typing "comment of the week" in a comment.

Return to the Front Page.


  1. Comment by Mike Healey June 10, 2021 @ 2:14 pm | Link

    In the days when I was a cycling officer in my local highways department, I had a discussion with a councillor about this. I pointed out that it would need to be a national policy, as riders from outside the city couldn't be forced to follow purely local rules.
    To make it national, the government would have to:

    1. register all bikes which would be used on the road. This would, in turn, require identifying them (make, model, colour, etc.) All motor vehicles have a nationally sanctioned Vehicle Identification number (VIN). Bikes usually have a serial no. stamped on the frame,(under bottom bracket or on rear seat stay. However, many are unreadable (rusted off, filed off by thieves, etc. Some bikes make could not be identified (maker's badge, name, etc., long since departed)
    2. Having done this (10-20 million bikes to be registered, depending on their likely usage), the govt would have to assign number plates to them. These would have to be roughly equivalent in size to car no. plates, so that the bike could be identified in the case of a hit and run, ignoring red lights, wrong side of road riding, etc., etc. Question: Where would you put them. Car manufacturers are required to place area of vehicle at specific places for this purpose. Possible candidates: under saddle/on seatpost. Oh dear, bike too big for riders, so saddle slammed right down so no room because plate would be caught by tyre. Off-side seat stay? Could only be attached on one side - not too secure and 3 exposed edges potentially dangerous. I know, under cross bar - women's bikes/ Dutch style city bikes? No x-bar. BMX? too small/low, ditto some mtbs and jump bikes. Front handlebars? Interfere with controls
    3. Would need brand new number series UK system looks like ST05 UPD (05 is year 2005) Would need to be able to be flexible enough to deal with 3 million bikes/year sold in UK.
    4. Would need to be on national database for police in-car Automatic Number Plate Recognition system to catch these vile miscreants. UK having national no. plate system cops system will automatically flag vehicles being driven without insurance, annual road tax or possible banned driver, etc.
    5. Licence: most adult riders have driving licence so know rules of road - bit pointless really. However, in addition to massive increase in bureaucracy for registering bikes, also need ditto for testing riders
    6. Insurance: even the notoriously law-abiding Swiss have abandoned this because the cost of running the scheme far outweighed the income from it and the amount of damage/injury caused by cyclists so minimal (by comparison with drivers), ludicrously out of balance with need.
    7. The police would, naturally, be delighted in the increase in their workload in the drive to get these law breakers off the streets - they have so little to do otherwise.
    By this time, the city councillor's eyes had glazed over and he agreed that the idea had not been properly thought through.
    I just love it when politicians propose legislation on the basis of a single incident which frightened them - must be wonderful to drive in a city where car drivers never do anything like that (them having number plates and proper driving licences and all).

    In response to The Monday Roundup: E-bikes for kids, greenway stimulus, Portland's unbuilt freeways, and more Array


  2. Comment by Ed June 10, 2021 @ 12:56 pm | Link

    Hamilton (and ODOT) never discuss or factor in induced demand from expanded freeways. Whatever greenhouse gas benefits you get from improved travel flow can easily be overcome by the number of new vehicle trips generated. If we are also thinking about an electric vehicle future, they use less energy travelling at slower speeds than higher speeds.

    In response to "We have to fight!" Youth anti-freeway activists protest outside ODOT headquarters Array


  3. Comment by soren June 10, 2021 @ 12:54 pm | Link

    PBOT found that deceleration followed by re-acceleration was common at the Division speed cameras but somehow this finding is rarely discussed here.

    IMO, speed cameras are expensive band aids that fail to address our toxic and inhumane road system. They are better than nothing but I doubt they will have much effect in the long-term (and will likely be removed once the sports utility cage majority [SUC] gets ticked off enough to make them an electoral issue).

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  4. Comment by soren June 10, 2021 @ 12:43 pm | Link

    It should be noted that the majority of speed cameras in Germany are located on motorways or regional highways/expressways, not on average roads in urban centers.

    https://www.scdb.info/en/karte/

    The monomaniacal focus on speed cameras in some urban areas is a USAnian "experiment" that avoids installation of cheap vision zero infrastructure because it might may annoy the sports utility cage (SUC) driving majority.

    I also expect that speed cameras in dense urban areas will prove to be a waste of money in the long run as drivers become accustomed to briefly decelerating and then re-accelerating.

    Speed cameras in urban areas are, in effect, very, very, very expensive speed bumps with multi-million dollar maintenance contracts.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  5. Comment by One June 10, 2021 @ 12:25 pm | Link

    I can’t count how many times I’ve been next to a cop who is behind someone without a license plate or a temporary paper in the window. They don’t care

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  6. Comment by DC June 10, 2021 @ 12:22 pm | Link

    Thanks for sharing, congrats to her!!

    In response to Personal note: My daughter graduates from high school today Array


  7. Comment by TonyT June 10, 2021 @ 12:14 pm | Link

    It's worth noting the following regarding Oregon law and speed camera enforcement:

    "Oregon law allows RLR cameras to also detect and issue speeding violations for motorists violating speeds by 11 mph or greater. Cities may not issue a speeding violation concurrently with a red light running violation, unless the motorist was exceeding the posted speed by more than 20 mph."

    Source - https://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/Engineering/Documents_TrafficStandards/Red-Light-Camera-Guidelines.pdf

    In other words, in a 20mph zone, drivers can go 50% over the speed limit without risking an automated speeding ticket. Likelihood of death from being hit by a driver goes from 7% at 20mph to 20% at 30mph. So pedestrians will have a nearly triple chance of dying due to protection for scofflaw drivers being enshrined into Oregon law.

    Also mentioned above is that a driver can be speeding 20mph over the limit AND run a red light and due to Oregon law, they are assured of only getting a ticket for running the red light. Oregon law goes out of its way to protect drivers from the consequences of their actions.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  8. Comment by Tom June 10, 2021 @ 12:12 pm | Link

    That German system was created far before facial recognition was developed and before the recently available facial recognition background check software existed. Currently at least the Beaverton and Gresham PD are full-in on the use of facial recognition with no real restrictions. They may already be pulling traffic camera data to run facial recognition background checks for both driver and passenger just to see what pops up. Why wouldn't they when its so easy, cheap and affective, and who is going to know as they don't reveal the details on how they are using facial recognition, and there are no records kept.

    This is essentially part of what China is doing in Xinjiang. What we are rapidly converging on in the US is China style surveillance. The Beaverton and Gresham PD can actually buy the same FR software used in Xinjiang which include built in filters for race detection. The FR software in the works will also have filters for sexual orientation, politics and even mood (see below links).

    If you don't have anything to hide, hopefully all the people who look like you (close enough to you to create a mismatch) also don't have anything to hide.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/09/12/researchers-use-facial-recognition-tools-to-predict-sexuality-lgbt-groups-arent-happy/

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-79310-1

    https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-00507-5

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-quiet-growth-of-race-detection-software-sparks-concerns-over-bias-11597378154

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  9. Comment by Watts June 10, 2021 @ 11:41 am | Link

    If the registered owner wasn’t driving at the time, they can give up the responsible party.

    "If you won't identify the guilty party, we're going to charge you!"

    Sounds adjacent to collective punishment. What's not to like? (Never mind complexities like trying to sort out conflicting accounts about who was driving, or someone getting a friend with a clean record to "take the fall" to avoid more severe consequences... as long as the state gets its pound of flesh...)

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  10. Comment by SD June 10, 2021 @ 11:40 am | Link

    It would be great if this kind of approach could be applied to greenways with increased fines similar to "work zones," but I am guessing that isn't part of the current plan.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  11. Comment by MarkinNoPo June 10, 2021 @ 11:17 am | Link

    I agree with eliminating police review but this is overwrought. And if you want to know why Democrats hesitated, the simplest answer is usually correct: they're beholden to the unions.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  12. Comment by David R Burns June 10, 2021 @ 11:05 am | Link

    I like to think of those warnings as opportunities for everyone to practice safe driving. Having practiced, many will continue to do so elsewhere.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  13. Comment by Ted Timmons (Contributor) June 10, 2021 @ 10:54 am | Link

    MAX seems to close some significant section of the line every year for a month for construction, so it'd be strange if that was the limiting factor. Examples:
    2021: https://trimet.org/alerts/blueline/index.htm#gateway2
    2020: http://web.archive.org/web/20210121021313/https://trimet.org/alerts/steelbridge/index.htm

    In response to Delays push back opening of Blumenauer Bridge over I-84 Array


  14. Comment by SilkySlim June 10, 2021 @ 10:28 am | Link

    Good news!

    Maybe I'm late to this, but while driving the other day Google Maps was telling me "Red light camera ahead" in advance of intersections (Tigard area).

    I was sort of conflicted... I don't want to "cheat" via this, but then again it caused me to slow down for sure. Which is probably better than speeding and getting a ticket several weeks later. I just hope it doesn't lead to a feeling of freedom to speed elsewhere.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  15. Comment by D2 June 10, 2021 @ 10:21 am | Link

    Unfortunately if offenders are going to the extent of taking off their license plate active policing is really the only answer.

    I believe the logic behind speed cameras is to slow down the average rate of speed and therefor decrease the number of accidents and/or the severity of them. If you can coerce the moderate speeders into compliance it also forces the more aggressive speeders to be 'stuck' in that traffic. Fully reckless drivers are another concern altogether.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  16. Comment by Matt D June 10, 2021 @ 10:16 am | Link

    The entire stretch of Banfield Freeway needs speed cameras. Drivers there are out of wack.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  17. Comment by mark June 10, 2021 @ 9:16 am | Link

    This is why it's so important to change to law to allow the citation to be sent to the registered owner, without the need to identify the driver. Should apply to hit and run violence as well.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  18. Comment by Harald June 10, 2021 @ 9:16 am | Link

    The German system requires the actual driver to be identified. However, if the driver can't be identified and the owner is uncooperative, there is no immediate fine but the vehicle owner is mandated to keep a drivers log for a certain period of time. Seems like a reasonable middle ground.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  19. Comment by rob nob June 10, 2021 @ 8:54 am | Link

    Yes there is a lot of variation. My point EXACTLY; saying it is half the time is odd when there is so much range. Yes some people are fitter than others, but few would take 50 minutes. Anyways, there are virtually no stops going over the bridge and coming in via 30 to Naito and that route is just 8.5 miles.

    In response to Willamette River ferry service takes big step forward Array


  20. Comment by The Dude June 10, 2021 @ 8:20 am | Link

    My take on what’s going on here is they are taking the subsidy money to line their pockets. They kick it back to the fabricators, suppliers, etc. There’s no actual hope of or plan to sustain success. I’ve seen it in numerous industries with stimulus funds to spend. That’s why they started without investing in an electric drivetrain.

    In response to Willamette River ferry service takes big step forward Array


  21. Comment by soren June 10, 2021 @ 8:15 am | Link

    When police "review" citations we should expect the outcome to be racist. Also, the moral cowardice of the democratic party in refusing to ban this practice is disgusting.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  22. Comment by The Dude June 10, 2021 @ 8:12 am | Link

    You know who doesn’t hold deep-seated beliefs about the superiority of the white race, isn’t filled with hate, and doesn’t carry a gun on the job? That’s right: traffic cameras.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


  23. Comment by chris Billman June 10, 2021 @ 8:09 am | Link

    Fantastic! It’s amazing how many times our children put a smile on our faces.
    To a long loving family, never stop giving hugs to each other.

    In response to Personal note: My daughter graduates from high school today Array


  24. Comment by cmh89 June 10, 2021 @ 7:53 am | Link

    You wouldn't need a downtown BRT line. We already have the yellow line, which is inaccessible from St. Johns. The distance between downtown St. Johns and the N Lombard TC is only 3.7 miles and makes huge amounts of sense because it would connect St. Johns (21,000 people), University Park, and Portsmouth to the MAX system. TriMet would never go for it because they only like building high-cost fixed rail systems through low density neighborhoods.

    In response to Willamette River ferry service takes big step forward Array


  25. Comment by mark June 10, 2021 @ 7:31 am | Link

    We need to change the law to allow the citation to be sent to the registered owner of the vehicle, without needing to identify the driver. If the registered owner wasn't driving at the time, they can give up the responsible party. Too many citations for a given vehicle, and the state will seize and crush it.

    In response to More traffic cameras, more money: A big day for safer streets in Portland Array


Comments