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yesterday, 01/29/2015 at 4:29pm Delete

Yikes! Bikes!

One more near miss in the dark. A bike moving at around 10-12 mph on Estero is quickly overtaken by a car going 35mph. In broad daylight, the vehicle driver has time to see the bike and move over, giving them at least the 3 feet called for by Florida law.

That same law calls for front and rear lights after dark on all bicycles operated on a roadway. I see precious few lights on bikes after dark on Estero Blvd. I also don't see reflectors, though recently, pedal reflectors were the only things that saved a bicyclist riding in the road in the dark wearing dark clothing—in other words, he was, for all practical purposes, invisible. He has no idea how close he came to being one more Lee County accident statistic.

Our streets are really dark. Its difficult for many drivers to see bikes and pedestrians in the dark. Especially when theyre driving south on Estero facing a long line of headlights impairing their night vision. When dark clothing is worn and no light is used, those pedestrians and bikes become part of the very dark background. Riding on the shoulder does not make it ok to not have lights.

I understand that for some people a bike is their only means of transportation. People work late hours and its dark when they have to ride home. A bike is cheap transportation. Lights are expensive and easy to steal. All true.

I've ridden thousands of miles on bikes. I am a fan of bike riding for a lot of reasons. This is not a diatribe against bikes using the roads. Bikes have a right to be on the road. But I sure would like to see a little more care taken by bike riders in our community, especially after dark.

 

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