I was incensed by Guy Edwards’s May 13 Local Opinions essay, “Drivers, please help bicyclists get home alive .” I admit the automobile driver Mr. Edwards described was in the wrong, and there are a lot of crazy automobile drivers out there. I live in South Arlington, the bicycle-crazy capital of the free world. Before anyone cautions automobile drivers about bicycle safety, they should examine the habits of bicycle riders. (Granted, Mr. Edwards said bicyclists also need to abide by the rules.)
Twice recently, my husband and I have come close to hitting a bicycle rider. One came out from between two buses to cross the street in the middle of four lanes of traffic as we approached from the opposite direction. The other, who was in the road, following the rules of vehicular traffic, came to a red light at a four-way intersection and decided to cross on the pedestrian crosswalk, thereby following the rules of pedestrian traffic. We were making a right turn on red after stopping but nearly hit the bicyclist. Both times, my husband’s quick reaction saved the day. Both times, we were within a half mile of our home. I’m just amazed the fatality rate is not higher.
We respect all the rules of the road. We respect all the pedestrian traffic rules. We watch with horror when people violate these simple rules. Bicyclists are the worst offenders because no one can anticipate what they’re going to do, and if there’s an accident, guess who’s going to be held responsible?
Carole E. Hunt, Arlington