60 Comment

  • I’ve lived and ridden in some of the worst cities for cycling in the USA and 14th St around this area is just as scary as anywhere I’ve ridden.

    • This is why I ride on 15th or 11th and never 14th, which is a nightmare.

    • As a relocated New Yorker in DC, this comment makes me chuckle a bit. 14th street at its worst can’t hold a candle to biking most of the avenues in Manhattan when it comes to speed or volume of traffic, aggressiveness of drivers, number of clueless pedestrians, etc.

      • Yay, let’s all try to one-up each other about which city is deadliest for bikes.

      • 14th and U is statistically the most dangerous intersection in DC for cyclists in terms of number of crashes, not to mention drivers and pedestrians.

      • Well it has been awhile since I’ve seen a NYC one-up comment on here. Thanks for providing me the morning eyeroll, it’s been too long since the last one!

        • Just a reminder that the original comment was a DC one-up. Two to tango.

          • Actually, the original comment wasn’t a one-up comment at all.

          • Sure it was. Poster said: This intersection is as bad as anywhere. (e.g. it’s as bad as other very bad places). But it’s not. It’s just…not. Traffic volume isn’t particularly high on 14th and it doesn’t move all that fast, all things considered.

          • DCers love to whine or to boast/whine. It betrays how much DC remains a bit of a second string city.

  • Let me guess – construction was blocking the bike lane?

    • Didn’t see it happen but when walking by, it did appear the construction truck might have had something to do with it. The cyclist didn’t seem to be critically injured which is good!

      • Yes, the bike lane was blocked by construction equipment (truck, cones & gravel). The cyclists had no choice but to ride in the regular lane, and was straight-up rear ended by the driver.

        • Did you witness this?

          • I witnessed it. About 2/3 of the bike lane was blocked by a truck and cones, and the woman was riding as close to them as possible when another woman drifted too far to the right. The front right bumper was pretty scraped, indicating she turned in.

          • Yes. MPD has my info. If the victim wants to contact me she can email me at my login name @ gmail.

  • prayers for everyone

  • I was riding in the bike lane (on the outside line because there was a huge construction truck with its left wheels in the lane) when the cyclist passed me on the left. She was at my left front wheel when a car came up on her back wheel. She flew off as the car drove over her back wheel. She went to the hospital to get checked out but it looked like nothing more than some banged up knees and hands.

    • did the car stop? what happens in these situations when the car is at fault for a cyclist accident?

      • I rode by shortly after and the car had stopped. Prayers go out to all involved, can’t be easy on either side of an accident like this.

      • The car stopped and we filed a police report. I gave a statement as did another guy who saw it and the driver. They didn’t seem overly concerned because the girl is fine, but at least it was recorded.

        • You never know if you’re ‘fine’ in the moments after a crash. Your adrenaline is flowing. I was hit and thought I was ‘fine’ – turns out two days later I realized I had a broken elbow requiring months of physical therapy to heal. Always file a police report in the event of something like this. I was able to sue the drivers insurance company (he was at fault) for medical bills + pain/suffering expenses and damage to my bicycle and settled for a large sum.

          If you think you are ‘fine’ and ride off, turns out you may not be.

          • And even if YOU think you’re fine, a personal injury attorney will go through the police reports and send you a letter telling you you’re not fine. A few months later, after weeks of chiropractic treatment at a “doctor” the lawyer sent you to, and you get your settlement check from the driver’s insurance company. I did insurance adjusting for about six months. It was all I could stand.

          • Yes, this. My friend was in a car accident on Thanksgiving Day in Hartford. Her car was T-boned by a taxi and her car was ruined. She had no physical ailments at the time of the crash, aside from a slightly sore back. She refused medical attention.
            Fast forward to yesterday and she had to go to the emergency room as she could not see straight, was babbling incoherently to her boyfriend, and started getting massive headaches if she tried to read any text. A neurologist conducted tests and they determined that she had a massive concussion that was progressing worse and worse over the days since the accident. This type of stuff happens ALL THE TIME, apparently. Definitely get a police report, otherwise you’ll be screwed.
            Unfortunately, my friend does not have medical insurance (she make $8/hour working at a bakery) and will need to deal with the taxi driver’s insurance on her own to get restitution.

          • Gee is ABSOLUTELY right. Even if you’re the victim of a hit-and-run like I was, having a police report made dealing with MY OWN insurance company much easier. I thought I was fine after my accident only to start experiencing symptoms of a concussion a few hours later.

            Always get a police report.

          • Gee and Nathan are absolutely right. After an accident, people can be very flustered, confused, and underestimate their potential medical problems. Always get a police report, and never give any statements to anyone except the police and your own insurance company. Any statements that other parties or their insurance companies obtain from you will only be used against you.

            It’s also worth noting that Anon’s (from 10:38am) statements are inaccurate. Under current DC law, attorneys are prohibited from “going through the police reports” to identify the parties involved in an accident unless they have been specifically authorized to do so by one of the involved parties. See D.C. Code 50-1401.01b. Many years ago, this type of activity may have been permissible, but the City Council has made great strides in making sure that the personal information of parties involved in auto accidents remains private.

  • Sorry, but why is it assumed that the Driver of the car was at fault. The Cyclist biked into the street, and must have gone pretty far outside of the bike lane if she went around another Cyclist who was already outside of the bike line. Cyclists need to be more careful. If the bike lane was blocked, perhaps stopping and waiting until there was a clearing of the car traffic would have been a good idea.

    • Because it’s a rear-end collision. That means the rear vehicle was following too closely. Almost always the fault of the driver behind, whether on the freeway or surface streets, and whether cars or cyclists are involved. Good luck getting out of fault if you strike a vehicle in front of you.

    • Cyclists have every right that cars do to be in any traffic lane. You can’t expect bikes to stop behind parked construction equipment and not try to make a reqsonable merge into the next lane of traffic. No car would act that way.

      • Cars can’t just merge into traffic without waiting for a gap to do so safely. Cars can and do stop if they are not going fast enough to merge with traffic at prevailing speed

        • True, but as Josh said, the rear vehicle is always the one found to be at fault regardless.

          • Rear vehicle is always at fault if the front vehicle was already in the lane. If front vehicle cuts off rear vehicle from another lane, all bets are off.

          • If I am going 5 MPH in an onramp of the freeway and merge into traffic going 55 MPH and get hit from behind, I am at fault. That’s what happened here. You can’t just pull your slow-moving pathetic bicycle into traffic and blame the poor driver for hitting your ignorant butt

          • What slow moving bike? I regularly hit 25mph+ on 14th. You are making an assumption that the bike was going slowly here, so you might want to tone down the declaratory statements.

          • The 5 mph; 55 mph anaology is ridiculous. And it’s pretty obnoxious to be trying that hard to come up with a theory to blame the cyclist. If you drive with the attitude of your comment, you are a hazard.
            The speed limit here is 25 mph. If there were construction cones in the road/merging traffic, the driver should have been going even slower. The bicyclist, who was passing another bicyclist, was most likely going at least 15 mph (pretty slow-average speed), if not faster. You also made up that this bicyclist “pulled in front” of the driver; it’s possible but so is the driver changing lanes or merging into her, getting distracted, or any number of other scenarios.

        • and you, Sunsquahed, are the problem. bikers speeding at 25+ down a major street, acting like they’re cars when it suits them and pedestrians when it doesn’t. it’s a free for all for cyclists in this town — no rules.

          • gotryit

            Acting more like a car when in the street and acting more like a pedestrian on an off-street trail makes perfect sense to me. In the end, it’s different than both – so we’re really just acting like bikers.

          • 25mph is below the speed limit, so I’m not “speeding,” and the “no rules” issue you speak of can also be applied to cars who regularly violate traffic/safety laws without getting tickets. I can just as easily conclude that it’s a free for all for car drivers in this town. So, when you say “I am the problem,” exactly what problem are you referring to?

    • Lol – are you a troll? Bike lanes are for safety but all bikes are permitted to ride in the usual traffic lanes. Of course if they did, it would sure slow down traffic.

    • Guys! Don’t feed the trolls.

    • Wow. You clearly do not understand traffic rules.

    • Car rear-ends bike, and you question if the driver is at fault? 1) It’s not illegal for a bike to use the lane. I do so all the time on 14th, especially given that the bike lane is almost always blocked by double parked cars and construction. 2) If a bike (or a car) is in a lane of traffic, it is illegal for a car to hit them from behind. 3) How can a cyclist be more careful in this case? They were rammed from behind! Shouldn’t the car have been more careful? 4) Why should the bike stop because the lane is blocked, rather then the car behind the cyclist slow down just a bit? You are suggesting that cars somehow have more rights to use the road than cyclists. As a personal note, I make it my mission to fully block the righthand lane of traffic whenever a car is blocking the bike lane. If car drivers are going to constantly & illegally block lanes designated for bikes, then they should be prepared to have bikes use the normal traffic lanes (and slow them down just a bit).

      • I think you missed the point that it appears the injured biker passed another biker who was already on the line of the bike lane. Perhaps the woman didn’t bother to look over her shoulder to see if it was indeed safe to pass the slower biker and thus was hit by the car that was already in the lane. Checking over your shoulder before you weave into traffic is how the biker could have been more careful.

        • But you assume she didn’t check before she started to pass the other biker (who described riding on the bike lane line). Maybe she checked, saw it was clear, started to pass and then the car came up behind and hit her. I’ve had near-misses when cars have misjudged how much clearance a bike needs when they pass me.

          • People on bikes misjudge as well. just saying…

          • Yup. I almost got hit in this situation on 14th Street. I was approaching a car blocking the bike lane. Absolutely checked before changing lanes. Completely clear. Hand-signaled, too. Then a car swerved over at high speed from the left lane because she didn’t want to wait for a left-turning car ahead. Barely avoided the accident and nearly had a heart-attack.
            Cherry on top was she screamed at me, “Get in the bike lane!”
            These are real people in these accidents. I don’t think it’s very thoughtful to speculate that they didn’t look, etc., when you have no idea.

      • “As a personal note, I make it my mission to fully block the righthand lane of traffic whenever a car is blocking the bike lane. If car drivers are going to constantly & illegally block lanes designated for bikes, then they should be prepared to have bikes use the normal traffic lanes (and slow them down just a bit).”


      • Better safe than legally right and dead. I see Cyclists riding through red lights, not stopping at stop signs, darting from the street to the sidewalk and back, all the time. Admittedly, I don’t know the Cycling laws in DC, but it seems like it would be better to think of safety first.

        • I see cars running red lights, not stopping at stop signs, blocking crosswalks, pulling illegal u-turns, not using turn signals, blocking lanes of traffic, speeding, etc… all the time. It seems that drivers should think about the safety of others first.

          • It’s disingenuous to imply they happen with the same frequency. You only do a disservice to other bikers when you make statements that everybody know are false. Are you interested in building up a culture of safety or the current status quo? Which is it?

          • gotryit

            speeding, rolling through stop signs (when there isn’t cross traffic), and blocking lanes of traffic don’t happen as often as bikers breaking the law? All of that happens all over the place, and some of it sucks.

  • This doesn’t surprise me. WIth all of the construction, the bike lane is basically unusable from U to Q Sts., and with traffic occasionally funneling to one lane, drivers are likely more concerned about that than looking for cyclists. If I biked, I would not use 14th to get around, at least in that area. I hope the cyclist is OK.

  • Cycling on 13th Street – which doesn’t even have a bike lane – is much safer than using 14th Street right now due to the construction, clogged lanes, and fast speeds of cars coming down the hill on 14th. I’d highly recommend 13th – I’ve seen a noticeable uptick in cyclists on there.
    11th Street is also good, but it’s absolutely ram packed with cyclists in the morning. As I was leaving my house at 8:15am this morning, I saw probably 20 cyclists go by in the 30 seconds it took me to walk out my front door to the back parking lot.

    • gotryit

      The problem I have with 13th is that it’s only one lane in each direction, with hills (at least enough to keep me well below car speed) and stop signs. So it ends up too much jockeying / cars backing up or passing in the oncoming traffic lane. I prefer 14th – just riding defensively. I can ride at the same speed as 14th street traffic going down the hill. I also like 11th street – much calmer.

  • When I’m in my car, I hate cyclists because they often have headphones on, they do whatever they want, weave in and out of traffic, disregard traffic lights, cars, and pedestrians. When I’m on my bike — usually doing all of those things — I hate drivers because they drive carelessly, are often on their phones, weave in and out of traffic, and drive aggressively against and around cyclists. I just suck as a person, and most of you do too.

  • gotryit

    Why do you continue to do it if you know it sucks?
    I get it that we all suck sometimes, but part of having integrity is changing your own behavior when you realize that you suck. Even if some other people don’t.

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