Turning Lemons into Lemonade
Colin Beavan, better known to most of us as No Impact Man, was almost crushed by a Mercedes while biking in New York City. At the last minute he knocked on the window of the car to alert the driver of his presence.
The driver wasn't very happy and some swearing ensued (more details about the verbal exchange below), but the twist of the story is that behind the wheel was NY state senator Jeff Klein. Now Colin has written an open letter to the senator asking him to meet with him and the New York City Executive Director of Transportation Alternatives, the person that advocates for bikers and pedestrians. "Since the Senator has now had first hand experience, we'd like to talk to him about policies that would help keep bikes and cars from tangling with each other."
Here are a few excerpts from the open letter:
Traffic was moving rather slowly and you were heading in the downtown direction, as was I. You were in the far left lane and I was riding on the curbside of that lane, near your rear passenger door. Suddenly, you began to veer your Mercedes to the left, potentially crushing me between your car and the cars parked on the side of the road.
With nowhere to go to get out of your way, and to avoid serious injury or death, in desperation, I chose to knock on your window to let you know that I was there and that you should avoid veering further in my direction.
At this point, you brought your vehicle to an abrupt halt, not to avoid hitting me, but because you apparently needed to communicate something to me. You rolled down your window and said, "Get your hands off my car, you f***ing a**hole."
You said, "You better not touch other people's cars. You might find that touching other people's cars is more dangerous than traffic."
This gave me the impression that you were threatening me.
I said, "I think my life is more precious than your car."
Via No Impact Man
Bicycles, Cycling, Biking, etc
45 Days in Jail for Driver who Rode Around with Cyclist on the Hood of his Car
San Francisco Sunday Streets: "Streets are for People"
Bear vs. Bike: Cyclist Hits 300-Pound Black Bear
Crossing Canada on an Electric Bike Using Only $10 of Electricity