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Sharing the Road on Raymond Avenue: Passing into the Roundabout

We’re approaching the Vassar Main gate roundabout on Raymond Avenue. I’m signaling for the middle of the lane, which involves extending my left arm straight out and pointing downward:

Raymond Avenue - Passing at Main Gate 1 rear - 2017-08-31

Raymond Avenue – Passing at Main Gate 1 rear – 2017-08-31

Evidently, the driver figures he can get past us into the roundabout, missing my hand by maybe a foot:

Raymond Avenue - Passing at Main Gate 2 - 2017-08-31

Raymond Avenue – Passing at Main Gate 2 – 2017-08-31

Six seconds later, we’re all stopped, because the planter in the middle of the roundabout is designed to hide the oncoming traffic and make you slow down:

Raymond Avenue - Passing at Main Gate 1 - 2017-08-31

Raymond Avenue – Passing at Main Gate 1 – 2017-08-31

I’m getting more assertive about moving leftward before we enter the approach, but obviously I’m not quite far enough over.

So it goes.

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  1. #1 by Daniel B. Martin on 2017-09-19 - 08:25

    A rider must understand the distinction between “sharing the road” and “seizing the lane.” In some situations “seizing” is the safe and sane course of action.

    • #2 by Ed on 2017-09-19 - 15:01

      Aye!

      That’s what I attempt to do with the “point at the middle of the lane” signal, after which I take the lane well before we go through the roundabout. The trouble comes when a driver must pass while I’m signalling, so I now signal much earlier than I used to. Mostly, it works out OK.

    • #3 by tantris on 2017-09-19 - 23:22

      Well, I wouldn’t call that seizing the lane. The legal minimum for cars to pass is 3 feet. And that’s not from the tire as many drivers seem to think, but from the leftmost point of bike and rider. The pictures look like it would be illegal for any car to pass at that point, so there is no seizing the lane. The other thing: Bikes have to ride as far to the right as practical. Which doesn’t mean on the curb. In this situation, anticipating a narrowing road and moving to the left is actually riding as far to the right as practical.
      Then there is of course that other thing: the made-up laws, invented by the brightest of the brightest drivers. One of these seems to read: “If you are stuck behind a bicycle for more than 7 seconds, you are allowed to pass that bicycle no matter how narrow the road. If convenient, you may leave the bicycle some of your lane by moving slightly into the other lane. However if you pass near a curve or in any area where you can’t check for oncoming traffic, you may move back into your own lane immediately and it shall be the bicyclists responsibility to avoid any negative consequences caused by his presence.”

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