Friday, September 25, 2009

Nutter's Bike Ride on 6ABC


JohnWa said...

What is the official position of the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia with respect to:

1. The legality of rolling stops at redlights and stopsigns?
2. The legality of track bikes for street use?

John Boyle said...

In response to JohnWa - We have no position on either issue, I would note that the "Idaho Stop" law does require a full stop at red lights before proceeding.

Bicycles are considered vehicles under Pennsylvania Laws and must obey all the rules of the road which apply to vehicles.

JohnWa said...

I am confused. I assume that by referencing the Idaho rolling stop, it’s use is "sort-of" condoned by the BCGP? I do not believe it is legal here in Pa. or Philadelphia and if not, how can the Idaho Stop or any version of a rolling stop, square with the Bicycle Coalition Pledge? Does the Pa. Motor Vehicle Code allow for a “Idaho Stop” or any version of it, whereby bicycles at intersections can slowly coast through a stop sign or stop-then-go on a red-light? Referencing a maneuver which I do not believe is legal is questionable, especially coming from the chief advocacy group for bicyclists in Philadelphia. The majority of bicyclists do it and feel justified.

I mentioned the track bikes because I observe them routinely employing rolling stops. They do not have brakes or gears and the riders of them, while they can stop, would rather not. Those that have to stop don't really do so, they just do figure 8's in the crosswalk around pedestrians! I guess it takes extra energy to start and stop, and so on, in an urban environment. Are they appropriate then, when quick stops are to be expected? Are they really legal, when the laws calls for the rider of a bicycle to stop in 15 feet from 15 mph, on a clean, dry, level road? Just because it looks cool, doesn’t always make it appropriate.

Spruce and Pine Streets will now have more encounters between bicyclists and pedestrians and bicyclists and motor vehicles. The BCGP should clearly state it’s position on legal/illegal behaviors and equipment given it’s leadership position.