[MissoulaGov] Bikes Yield at Stop Signs?

Marilyn Marler marler at bigsky.net
Wed Jun 6 07:45:22 MDT 2007


I really agree with Dave- that bikes are vehicles and need to obey all the
traffic laws of vehicles. I think the proposed bill is a bad one that would
promote confusion. It isn't hard for cyclists to stop at a stop sign or
stop light. I think the bill is unnecessary and would be dangerous. m

----- Original Message -----
From: "David Strohmaier" <dstrohmaier at msn.com>
To: <robinlhamilton at bresnan.net>; <mist at strans.org>;
<missoulagov at cmslists.com>
Sent: Tuesday, June 05, 2007 11:39 PM
Subject: Re: [MissoulaGov] Bikes Yield at Stop Signs?



> Interesting, although I'm not at all enthusiastic about this proposal and

> have encouraged the Missoula Police Department to oppose it. Indeed, I

> think

> this effort tends to undermine many of the arguments proferred in past

> days

> that have rightly endeavored to raise the status of bikes to that of motor

> vehicles. I firmly believe that bikes, as vehicles in their own right,

> should obey all the laws applicable to motor vehicles. I recently spent

> some

> time in the Missoula Municipal Court after receiving a well-earned ticket

> for making a rolling stop. Did I look both ways as I approached the

> intersection? Yes. Did my actions seem safe to me at the time? Yes.

> Nevertheless, those are no excuses, and there have been times when I

> thought

> I had adequately scanned the streetscape only to nearly miss a pedestrian,

> bicycle, dog, etc. I don't think bicyclists are well served by placing too

> much energy into an issue like this, which merely reinforces stereotypes

> of

> cyclists as considering themselves above the law.

>

> And stay tuned, I remain convinced that we need a bike helmet ordinance in

> Missoula and will be attempting to revive this effort before the City

> Council at some point in the future. But that's another story . . .

>

> Dave

>

>

> Dave Strohmaier

> 508 E. Pine

> Missoula, MT 59802

> (406) 327-8911, home

> (406) 721-1958, office

>

>

>

>

>

>>From: "Robin Halmilton" <robinlhamilton at bresnan.net>

>>To: "Bob Giordano" <mist at strans.org>,missoulagov at cmslists.com

>>Subject: Re: [MissoulaGov] Bikes Yield at Stop Signs?

>>Date: Tue, 05 Jun 2007 15:01:05 -0600

>>

>>Bob and others, I think this is a good bill and the Idaho authorities say

>>it

>>is a non issue. I'll need the support of the bicycle community to testify

>>in

>>Helena.

>>Robin

>>

>>

>>

>>On Tue, 5 Jun 2007 08:26:41 -0600 (MDT)

>> "Bob Giordano" <mist at strans.org> wrote:

>> > Regarding bikes yielding at stop signs: I'm forwarding some emails from

>> > this past legislative session to shine some more light on the issue..

>> >

>> > --------------------------

>> > *email 1, some background on what was proposed, from January '07:*

>> >

>> > http://data.opi.mt.gov/bills/2007/billhtml/HB0581.htm#About

>> >

>> > This is a link to a bill that would allow cyclists to proceed through

>>stop

>> > signs and (in some instances) red lights, if it is safe, without coming

>>to

>> > a complete stop.

>> >

>> > This seems to be a good bill- for safety and for equity of cycling.

>> >

>> > At stop signs, most often it is not necessary to come to a complete

>>stop,

>> > only necessary to yield. A cyclist, with the way derailers work,

>>benefits

>> > immensely from slight momentum, instead of starting from a dead stop.

>> > Yet, most importantly perhaps, is that cyclists, unlike drivers, can

>> > readily determine if stopping, yielding or proceeding is appropriate

>>(all

>> > the senses of a cyclist are strongly engaged).

>> >

>> > At red lights, it is sometimes much safer to proceed through the

>> > intersection instead of waiting for traffic to build up. Many cyclists

>> > (and peds) are injured or killed at stop lights each year due to

>> > inattentive driving. (replacing signals with modern single lane

>> > roundabouts would likely be a better step).

>> >

>> > This bill seems to promote personal responsibility on the part of

>> > cyclists. We (society) have become so used to lights and signs

>>directing

>> > traffic flow that we have forgotten that we all do share the road and

>>have

>> > responsibility to use it properly and cooperatively.

>> >

>> > What do others think??

>> >

>> > -Bob Giordano, MIST

>> >

>> > -----------------------------------------------------

>> > *email 2, the final status of the bill, around Feb. '07*

>> >

>> > The 'bikes yield' bill (sponsored by Robin Hamilton, and based on a

>> > similar law passed in Idaho) did not go through- a big reason,

>>apparently,

>> > was the msla police opposed it. But then, they withdrew their

>>opposition

>> > after talking to police in Idaho that said it was a 'non-issue' for

>> > them

>> > (but the bill had already died).

>> >

>> > Bikes yielding at stop signs, esp. neighborhoods, makes good sense.

>> > Traffic signals are more complex of an issue. MIST is working hard to

>>1-

>> > replace signals with single lane roundabouts where appropriate and 2-

>>make

>> > sure signals are designed with peds and bikes at the forefront of

>>safety.

>> >

>> > -------------------------------------------------------------

>> >

>> > Should there be a movement to get this bill, or similar, passed in the

>> > 2009 legislature? Should it be just stop signs, or include red lights

>> > like Idaho's law?

>> >

>> > thanks, -Bob Giordano, MIST

>> >

>> >

>> >

>> >

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