Friday, October 14, 2005

Close Call

Yesterday morning, during my drizzly ride to work, I was riding on a busy road approaching a driveway into a bank when a guy passed me quickly then braked and started to make a right turn. I threw my anchors overboard, front and rear, but knew there was no hope of me
stopping in time. I was in the right of my lane, so I couldn't pass him on the left. I considered making an emergency hard right turn, but for whatever reason, I didn't feel it was possible. I accepted my fate, aimed for the rear bumper and prepared for a crash.

Don't get the wrong idea. Approaching a state of Nirvana, I was not. Throughout this whole scene, I was yelling as loud as I could at this guy. And eventually he heard me and pulled out of his turn. I zipped up on his right until I slowed down safely.

I then passed him on the left, and he voluntarily would down his window to receive a yelling from me. I was furious and enraged. He was apologetic, and sincerely. I calmed down at the next red light, and we parted peacefully.

I've been riding to work since May now, and this is probably the closest I've come to an accident. It is extremely rare. I probably have more close calls finding the correct lane on the 404 at the 401.

I couldn't help but think afterwards about the CAN-BIKE course and how I have not taken it. I've read about what it covers and felt that I was pretty comfortable with all the topics, except the emergency right turn (see Instaturn G.1.). I've read about it, and thought about it,
but I really need to practice it.

Darren J 10/14/2005 09:49:00 AM

2 Comments:

Would a "take the lane" strategy have been more effective than riding on the right?
The lane was wide enough that I never would have considered fully taking the lane here. I was probably a metre or so from the curb, so I should have been visible before he passed me and then in his mirror.

But since prevention is an important factor, maybe I should be riding further to the left to make this less likely. I can't really say for sure.

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