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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Cyclists kills pedestrian running a red light..

    Just read this on Yahoo. Strava had going 35 at impact when he hit the 71yo. Very sad and very bad for all of us that obey the laws of the road. On top of this bad news, this is the second time a elderly pedestrian was killed in recent time by a cyclists.

    Cyclist accident makes waves on the Web | The Upshot - Yahoo! News
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  2. #2
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    Yeah, we got to follow rules or else it'll be open season on the cyclist.
    With people like Peter P. around, I am done posting on this website. Mean people have driven me off after 9 plus years. Good luck newbies beware.

  3. #3
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    He say's he was "cruising through the intersection" but strava has him at 35mph. Thats not cruising.

  4. #4
    PhotonFreak
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    sounds like the cyclist was going over the speed limit for the road hence he was "too committed" to stop safely in time for the yellow light. Only possible defense for that might be if the light is actually malfunctioning or improperly short even for the shorter speed.

    I'm not going to lie and say I never speed when doing downhills or with generous tailwinds, but at the same time I'm always ready to treat "stale green lights" like they could turn red any moment, and be prepared to stop in time -- this sometimes means sitting up from pedaling all out and covering the brakes while watching the light.

    This case should be prosecuted same as if it were a car driver that was speeding/running a red and involved in a hit and run. (which is actually quite a bit lighter sentencing wise than most of the commenters calling for blood on the news article are demanding)
    Last edited by PhotonFreak; 04-06-2012 at 03:57 PM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by saleenboy818 View Post
    He say's he was "cruising through the intersection" but strava has him at 35mph. Thats not cruising.
    FWIW, the accuracy of the mobile Strava app in terms of reporting speed leaves a lot to be desired.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhotonFreak View Post
    sounds like the cyclist was going over the speed limit for the road hence he was "too committed" to stop safely in time for the yellow light. Only possible defense for that might be if the light is actually malfunctioning or improperly short even for the shorter speed.

    I'm not going to lie and say I never speed when doing downhills or with generous tailwinds, but at the same time I'm always ready to treat "stale green lights" like they could turn red any moment, and be prepared to stop in time -- this sometimes means sitting up from pedaling all out and covering the brakes while watching the light.

    This case should be prosecuted same as if it were a car driver that was speeding/running a red and involved in a hit and run. (which is actually quite a bit lighter sentencing wise than most of the commenters calling for blood on the news article are demanding)
    So it was a hit and run? I didn't see that being mentioned in the article.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ph0enix View Post
    So it was a hit and run? I didn't see that being mentioned in the article.
    It wasn't a hit and run. According to the articles, the cyclist was lying on the road knocked out for about five minutes (after the head impact on the pavement).
    Last edited by AndreyT; 04-06-2012 at 04:52 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by High Gear View Post
    Just read this on Yahoo. Strava had going 35 at impact when he hit the 71yo. Very sad and very bad for all of us that obey the laws of the road. On top of this bad news, this is the second time a elderly pedestrian was killed in recent time by a cyclists.

    Cyclist accident makes waves on the Web | The Upshot - Yahoo! News
    a really freak accident. I wonder what is the total number of fatalities or serious injuries from bike-pedestrian collisions, vs. car-pedestrian, car-car, or car-bike collisions?

    pedestrians like to complain about outlaw cyclists running red lights etc., but the real threat is irresponsible, inattentive drivers - for both cyclists, pedestrians and other car drivers. I think we all know of many cases of serious injuries and fatalities arising from car accidents, but the freak nature of bike-pedestrian collision attracts a lot more attention. Unless we post every single incident of cyclist killed by car (there was one incident just last week, a mile from my house) or car passenger killed by car accident on this forum, I do not think it's fair to single out these type of accidents, as if it is something common enough that needs to be addressed at a serious level.

  9. #9
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    It's sad. No one is a winner in this case. Even with legal action no one wins. I feel sorry for both the victim and the cyclists. Very easy to point fingers at people.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by 55x11 View Post
    a really freak accident. I wonder what is the total number of fatalities or serious injuries from bike-pedestrian collisions, vs. car-pedestrian, car-car, or car-bike collisions?

    pedestrians like to complain about outlaw cyclists running red lights etc., but the real threat is irresponsible, inattentive drivers - for both cyclists, pedestrians and other car drivers. I think we all know of many cases of serious injuries and fatalities arising from car accidents, but the freak nature of bike-pedestrian collision attracts a lot more attention. Unless we post every single incident of cyclist killed by car (there was one incident just last week, a mile from my house) or car passenger killed by car accident on this forum, I do not think it's fair to single out these type of accidents, as if it is something common enough that needs to be addressed at a serious level.
    You don't think that this needs to be addressed at a serious level? Seriously?

    From the POV of the person that this cyclist hit and ultimately killed, the number of accidents caused by cars is immaterial, isn't it?

  11. #11
    PhotonFreak
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndreyT View Post
    It wasn't a hit and run. According to the articles, the cyclist was lying on the road knocked out for about five minutes (after the head impact on the pavement).
    My bad, it wasn't a hit and run. A lot of the comments to the article state that it was, but this is because they assumed it was hit and run because of the the cyclist statement after the fact:

    "I apparently hit a 71 y/o man"

    as if that were an admission that he'd left the scene. People are basically reading the article as if it were a guy in a car who hit a pedestrian without noticing and bailed witout checking to see what happened. That would be plausible in the case of a car hit-and-run but not a bike-pedestrian crash. (It would be pretty hard for a guy on a bike to hit a pedestrian without even noticing...)



    I re-read the articles again (including the blog this time). Looks like it was a combination of the cyclist probably miss the red (but just barely) and the pedestrians starting to cross the intersection early as well-- likely thinking the coast was clear because they didn't see any cars coming. I still maintain the cylist should have stooped. Had a car done the same thing -- been speeding a bit and barely missed a yellow pedestrians probably wouldn't have gone out into the intersection in the first place as they would have "seen" the car coming. Even if an accident did result, there probably wouldn't be as much outrage over the incident as this. The outrage in most of these posts is largely a smokescreen for people being butthurt about cyclist in general...

    I still agree he should get same punishment as a car driver would in this situation -- no more, no less -- for someone who caused a pedestrian death under these circumstances (unless he was drunk) would be a couple tickets for running the red light and speeding, maybe at most a lower-degree manslaughter charge that would get plead down to something like misdimeanor reckless driving with no time served without going to trial.
    Last edited by PhotonFreak; 04-06-2012 at 08:35 PM.

  12. #12
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    Here's the SF Bike Coalition's statement on the tragedy: http://www.sfbike.org/main/

  13. #13
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    It will be interesting to find out if the light was yellow when the cyclist entered the intersection. If it was perhaps the city is at fault by not allowing enough time before a walk signal changes. The pedestrian must have literally just stepped off of the curb or the cyclist must not have been paying any attention. He should be prosecuted just the same as drivers who hit and kill cyclists, a quick slap on the wrist if that.

  14. #14
    PhotonFreak
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    Quote Originally Posted by akamp View Post
    It will be interesting to find out if the light was yellow when the cyclist entered the intersection. If it was perhaps the city is at fault by not allowing enough time before a walk signal changes. The pedestrian must have literally just stepped off of the curb or the cyclist must not have been paying any attention. He should be prosecuted just the same as drivers who hit and kill cyclists, a quick slap on the wrist if that.
    I suspect it was a combination of all these things -- probably a light that was probably timed too short for the conditions, pedestrians stepping out a second too early (as they didn't see any cars coming), and an over-eager cyclist (admittedly speeding but probably not so much but by enough to be considered reckless in and of itself) coming into an intersection fast and possibly just missing the signal.

    If it turns out the cyclist did in fact make the yellow light and was guilty of nothing more than speeding, then it probably is the fault of the city for having improperly timed lights. This might be a cause for the victim's family to sue the city, which might happen one way or another if it turns out the cyclist doesn't have any money to go after.

  15. #15
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    This is an incredibly busy intersection. I would be surprised if the light was not up to snuff because while SF's gov't leaves a lot to be desired, this is a major intersection in an extremely popular part of town.

    Where he was coming from is a pretty steep hill that bottoms out onto a 6 lane major artery. I wouldn't go through thus intersection at speed ever, unless I had a police escort front and back.

    I hope his cavalier-sounding blog posts and whatnot are saved for the inevitable trial.

  16. #16
    B05
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    Went out for a ride today and some roadies would just blaze through a Red on a 3-way street. smh.

    RIP to the victim and thanks to the cyclist who's putting us to shame once again.

  17. #17
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    There's no excuse for riding too fast for conditions, regardless of whether you are on a bike or in a car. We must anticipate hazards and ride/drive defensively. Vehicular homicide or manslaughter, I don't know how this will come down, but he must pay for carelessly taking this man's life.

    On the rider's blog:
    The author dedicates the post to his helmet, which "died in heroic fashion today as my head slammed into the tarmac. ... May she die knowing that because she committed the ultimate sacrifice, her rider can live on and ride on. Can I get an amen? Amen."



    Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...#ixzz1rKqqUIGG
    Last edited by Bill2; 04-06-2012 at 10:56 PM.

  18. #18
    awake
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    I live just up the road from the crash site. I timed the lights on my way home from the gym tonight. The cyclist had about two full seconds AFTER his light turned red before the crosswalk pedestrian light illuminated. At 35 mph, he would easily traverse the entire intersection in that amount of time, certainly if the light turned red at the half-way point (as the cyclist described in his blog post).

    The pedestrian that was killed was actually walking behind his wife at the time he was struck -- in an interview she described his tendency to wait a few seconds before stepping off the curb to be more safe. Ironic and incredibly sad.

  19. #19
    Realist
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    Quote Originally Posted by B05 View Post
    Went out for a ride today and some roadies would just blaze through a Red on a 3-way street. smh.

    RIP to the victim and thanks to the cyclist who's putting us to shame once again.
    It is worse in the Netherlands. People with 2 kids on their bikes while talking on the cell phones not stopping for red lights. The worst is the "bakfiets" because they think they are the only people on the bike path, sidewalk, road, etc.


  20. #20
    DrD
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculpin View Post
    From the POV of the person that this cyclist hit and ultimately killed, the number of accidents caused by cars is immaterial, isn't it?
    True - but I think the point is more of how this is going to be treated as compared to if it were a car-pedestrian accident. Look how fired up folks get when they see a bike run a red, or blow through a stop sign, even though the number of cars doing the same is many orders of magnitude higher... hell, drivers get fired up when you do something you are allowed to do (taking a lane, for example - or sometimes, just riding along in the shoulder).

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrD View Post
    True - but I think the point is more of how this is going to be treated as compared to if it were a car-pedestrian accident. Look how fired up folks get when they see a bike run a red, or blow through a stop sign, even though the number of cars doing the same is many orders of magnitude higher... hell, drivers get fired up when you do something you are allowed to do (taking a lane, for example - or sometimes, just riding along in the shoulder).
    I don't disagree with that at all, I just don't think this can be minimized based on its frequency relative to similar incidents involving cars, which is how I read the post, and what I was responding to. Any preventable incident like this bothers me, and the cavalier attitude of the guy who killed the pedestrian infuriates me...

  22. #22
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    Also in Wyoming

    A cyclist killed a pedestrian on a paved MUT near Jackson, Wyoming a few years ago. In this case it was the cyclist's fault. He hit the pedestrian from behind. MUTs are dangerous for cyclists, loose dogs, pedestrians, etc.

  23. #23
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    I agree of course that this is a very serious occurrence, as is any death. However, I doubt it will wind up being of great importance to the cycling community, pedestrian community, or almost anyone other than the involved parties.

    Along the lines of prior posts, the danger posed by cyclists as a whole, or even per mile traveled, to life, limb, and property is practically nothing at all compared to that of motorists.

    It is just sensational when it so happens that a cyclist damages something, or worse yet, someone, other than themselves. The noise from one incident is so much more audible.

    Its like a shark attack. For all intents and purposes, it is almost non-existent. When it occurs, a big deal is made. Then, people calm down and go back to legislating ways to protect people in their cars from the deer they hit, and safety standards for farms to protect people from being crushed by their cows. But you don't hear about that stuff that actually has a toll on human lives, its not as interesting.

    But, you never know, sometimes a big change is made from a single incident, but if it is this one, I feel it will be blowing things vastly out of proportion.
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  24. #24
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    I just read about another cyclist hitting and killing a pedestrian in Hawaii a few days after the San Francisco incident. Before these two stories I think I read about one in New York and one in Britain.

    What scares me about these highly publicized accidents is the possibility of laws being passed forcing cyclists to carry liability insurance, just like motorists. As many of you know, the bicycle is often the only way that homeless and other low-income people can get around independently other than walking. There's no way those people would be able to afford liability insurance. Just look at the number of uninsured drivers out there. I bet many of them are barely surviving too.

    Don't get me wrong. This is a very unfortunate accident and my condolences go to the victim and his family. But this is California, the land of laws regulating laws. I can imagine the anti-cyclist backlash that could come from this.

  25. #25
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    Actually this was the second pedestrian fatality in SF in less then one year involving ped vs bicycle. I was directly involved in the response to the first. Confidentially laws prohibit my disclosing much, but I will say in the first incident the pedestrian was an innocent victim and from the moment of impact never had a chance. The bicyclist was completely at fault and a security camera at a nearby restaurant provided visual confirmation of that.

    In this incident the intersection involved is quite large. The hill dropping down to it is significant enough to allow any cyclist with some skills to develop a high rate of speed. I have no trouble believing a skilled in shape rider hit that intersection at 35mph. The rider in this incident has even blogged now, not real smart, that the light went red just as he arrived at the intersection. He went on to say he was committed to the intersection at that point and that he was surprised at how fast the crosswalk filled with pedestrians. He then stated he could not find a line to go through so he laid his bike down. He finished by "thanking" his helmet for sacrificing it's life to save his.

    I love riding, and have been on bikes in some manner almost all my life. But, especially in a highly congested city like SF, rules have to be followed. I'm not perfect and I roll the lights at times. But blowing through major intersections at high rates of speed is a recipe for disaster. In the end it makes us all look bad. I can also tell you certain agencies are "stepping up" enforcement on bicyclists...just as a heads up Bay Area folk.

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