Cyclist Hit by Cab Driver at 15th and T St, NW

A reader just sends word that a cab hit a cyclist at the corner of 15th and T St, NW. They did not mention how badly the cyclist was injured.

@DCPoliceDept tweets:

“(1/2) Traffic Alert: Accident involving a cyclist at 15th and T St, NW. Northbound traffic on 15th St is shut down until further notice.

(2/2) PT is an adult male;he’s going in &out of consciousness/taken to a local hospital. Take EB Swann St,14th St and 16th St/7066”

39 Comment

  • Well, the windshield is completely shattered and the bike is pretty mangled so it definitely was a pretty big scene. The ambulance left not too long ago, but there are lots of police interviewing neighbors.

  • This is awful news and hopefully the cyclist is okay. That should be the only comment on this story, let’s see if PoPville can restrain itself for once.

  • That’s awful. Also, I think that picture is at 15th and T, not 14th.

  • Was the cyclist in the cycletrack? (Not that the cyclist isn’t also legally entitled to ride in the street as well)

    • Actually, because there is a bike lane/cycle track on 15th Street, the cyclist wouldn’t be legally entitled to ride in the street. See number 7:

      That said, a driver of a vehicle should always be in control of their car, and should not collide with another moving object, cycling or otherwise. I do hope the cyclist is okay.

      • gotryit

        You’re reading that exactly backwards. It’s an example of a common misconception.

        The law on the right says that the existance of bike lanes does not limit the bicycle to riding in that lane only.

      • Umm, read that document again. You got it backwards. Also, much of 15th Street has sharrows in the right-hand lane.

      • Actually, Number 7 says that cyclists *do* have the right to ride in the street where there’s a bike lane. In the example, an officer cites a bicyclist for riding in the road when a path or bicycle lane is present, and the note explains that the officer was wrong to issue the citation: “Title 18 (2220.6) states that the existence of Restricted Lanes on any roadway does not limit those vehicles for which the restrictions are established solely for use of the Restricited Lanes unless specifically indicated by signs.”

    • Also a strong possibility was riding in the eastbound cycle lane on T Street.

  • This raises the question whether biking on that section of 14th is safe. Your options are limited on 14th. You can:

    1. Bike to the side of the road and hope cars pass safely.
    2. Bike as fast as you can and hope to keep up with traffic
    3. Take up the entire lane and piss everyone off.
    4. Bike on the crowded sidewalk.
    5. Bike on another road.

    Personally, I try to bike on other roads through that area but there’s a bottleneck in that part of town. What do others suggest? Is 14th St. safe to bike on?

    • This is definitely 15th. 14th isn’t a 1-way street.

      14th has bike lanes from Florida south to Thomas Circle, and from Columbia Rd. north to, well, at least Decatur, and I think much further than that. Above U St., 14th is safer than 16th if you’re heading downtown in the morning or uptown in the evening – 16th has faster traffic (despite the same speed limit) and no bike lanes. 11th is probably your safest bet, but it dead-ends at Spring.

      • I think the bike lanes go to at least Madison. I take that stretch of 14th home to Petworth from Bethesda every day.

        Regardless, hope this guy is okay. Sucks these keep happening. Slow down out there people, other peoples lives are on the line!

        • 11th Street NW ends at Spring Road. I don’t mean the bike lane ends there, I mean the whole street ends there. There is no 11th street north of Spring Road.

          I’d recommend 14th for biking north of U Street, or 13th north of about Chapin (hill by Cardozo too steep for most, but after that, it’s decent). No bike lane, but also no buses, and traffic isn’t too fast until you get north of Military Road.

          • Sorry, misread your post, thought you were talking about the bike lane on 11th going up to Madison, but I see that you were not.

            The bike lane on 14th goes all the way up to Aspen St, where 14th dead-ends at the south wall of Walter Reed Hospital.

  • from the pic, it looks like the cyclist may have been crossing 15th on T and gotten hit by the cab – that would also explain a cracked windshield. sucks.

  • blester01

    I hope the cyclist is ok, but I also hope others learn their lesson (but I’m sure they won’t). I am so sick of having to dodge cyclists that constantly break the traffic rules in this town. They are constantly running stop signs without looking, stop lights, lane changes, U-turns, going the wrong way, etc…

    Cycling is great don’t get me wrong. But it works so much better in Europe b/c there is more accountability. If you get a ticket, it gives you points on your drivers license.

    • *ding* *ding* *ding* And we have a winner for the first “I hate cyclists” post! In an impressive display of restraint, it took a whopping 51 minutes, which I believe is a record.

    • This is a ridiculous comment from some ignoramus who has NO IDEA who was at fault here.

      My thoughts are with the cyclist for a full and speedy recovery.

    • Whose also to say the cab driver didn’t pull an illegal U-turn?

      Quit making up assumptions based on no facts.

    • From the no information that we have about what caused it, what lesson should the cyclist (and the people reading this post) learn? Simply because you have had to dodge cyclists (just like I’ve had to dodge many cars that didn’t see me, chose to ignore me, or people exiting vehicles just throwing their doors open while I’m biking down the street) doesn’t mean that’s what happened here.

      You win the thread! (previously would have been awarded to the person who said that the cyclist was not entitled to ride in the street but posted direct evidence that he/she was wrong)

      • Hard to know who is at fault here (I think I’ve seen almost equal number of taxi drivers and cyclists break any number of laws) but I do hope the cyclist is fine.

        Unrelated to this accident, I will say I have seen many more incidents of cyclists at fault for nearly causing accidents than car drivers. I’m a pedestrian who walks about 20 minutes to work each day and EVERY DAY witness at least one of the following committed by cyclists: running reds at high speeds and nearly getting clipped by cars legally going on greens (most common), speeding down hills and then making wide turns onto streets with oncoming traffic (impossible for a car to see this coming), and not stopping at stop signs (causing the common car jerk as the driver pumps the breaks. As a pedestrian I’m much more fearful of being hit by a cyclist than a car.

        • That’s so weird. I’m a pedestrian and have had the exact opposite experience. Though I’m mostly walking about two miles in Alexandria, so maybe that’s the difference. But I would much rather be hit by a bike than a car. I’ve been hit by a car going 5 mph and a bike going 25 mph, and got the same injuries. The cars that almost hit me are usually going 35 mph, so I’m pretty much terrified every time I cross the street.

        • I walk, bike, and drive in this city. All three do things that are wrong and annoying, but I feel like the cars are the worst offenders. Cyclists might be the second worst offender, but that is getting a huge challenge from pedestrians who stand in bike lanes waiting for the light, or walk against a left hand turn light, or stand in the street just enough that cars can’t make a right on the red.

          No one group is innocent, but I feel that cyclists, by and large, are the most vulnerable. When a pedestrian needs to stop, they stop, they don’t have to worry about going over their handlebars.

  • Cab drivers in this town are terrifying. Totally unpredictable and erratic. They are my worst fear on the road (I ride a scooter). Here’s hoping the cyclist makes a full recovery.

    • actually, as someone who doees a 30 minute mile and a half walk home every day, i’m nearly hit at least once every single walk by cars who fail to stop at stop signs or who barrel into right turns without pausing. i find the cabs are actually, on average, better than regular drivers at actually coming to a stop and letting me through.

      the real jerks of the road in this city are the metro bus drivers. they seem to think that they have total priority over other vehicles and that no laws or rules apply to them.

      • Agree re Metro bus drivers. They’re the only people who act like no consequences if run you over, broad side you, etc.

    • They don’t even know the laws! I was crossing in a marked crosswalk, and a cab-driver yelled at me saying that I was lucky he stopped even though he didn’t have to. So I told him it’s the law to stop for pedestrians already in the crosswalk. I didn’t raise my voice, so I didn’t think he heard me, but then he went absolutely apeshit, screaming repeatedly “It’s not the law” and cussing up a storm. I kept walking and the car behind him leaned on his horn til the cab driver drove away. It was insane.

      Ever since, I’ve watched out for taxi drivers, and they break far more laws than anyone else.

  • 10 motorists killed in Virginia this past weekend. Be safe out there folks.

  • Hence the reason why the correct answer to the query posed in the “Is it safe to bike on 16th St?” post is “No, it’s not ‘safe’ to bike on ANY street because you can get hit by or hit a car anywhere.”

  • Can we please leave the biker / bike lanes / cab drive argument to another post and lets all come together and pray that the biker is okay. Thank you!!!!!

  • My wife got all messed up in a bike accident on 15th St many years ago. Way before the bike lanes. With more bikes and the horrific bike/ped/car/signal thing DC is trying to do (but not quite getting it right aka ped/bike sitting halfway across 15th St trying to wait to cross against the light), we might as well get used to more and more news like this. Let’s try harder to get it right!

  • We really need to ban biking on DC at certain hours or on certain roads. It’s just too dangerous.

    • Perhaps the city should ban cars instead.

      • Yeah what the hell? It’s not the bikes that people are in danger of. (Generally. No snarky link to that freak story of the vehicular manslaughter via bike).

  • brookland_rez

    Cab drivers are hand down the worst drivers in this city. I always use tons of caution around them when I’m on my motorcycles.

    I am really sorry for the bicyclist that got hit. Hopefully he/she can recover fully.

  • I walk, I bike and I drive. Bikers usually are a menace to both cars and pedestrians. Most drive dangerously, almost no one ever stops for stop signs. Some may stop at traffic signals if there is traffic, if there is no or less traffic, they never stop or even slow down.

    Personal experience, no prejudices. I love to bike. I don’t feel threatened by bikes when I am in a car, and I could care less about the bikers breaking the laws, they are risking their own lives. But what pisses me off is when I am walking and crossing a street when I have the right of way, they bikers would just not stop.

    Next time a biker tries to cut me off while I am crossing a street, I might just push him off the bike!

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