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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Bike Riders in San Francisco create hurdles and cause serious Safety Issues.

San Francisco is a beautiful city but it is also a City that has many hills.

While we do have areas in the City that are flat and may be used to bike as often happens - those that bike have to encounter thousands of vehicles on the flat routes and roads.

When a bike encounters a vehicle - you do not have to be a rocket scientist to know who will be adversely affected - if there is a collision.

Some years ago without any public meeting a blind stretch of road from Manzell going towards Arleta was declared a bike lane on San Bruno Avenue.

I was on the MUNI bus 9 and suddenly I saw a bike in front of the bus and the bike nudged the MUNI bus and the bike and the rider was thrown to the ground.

The MUNI bus stopped and I got out and called the ambulance.

The young girl riding the bike meant well - but going up the slope the climb was too much for her and she came too close to the MUNI bus - who saw her at the last moment and thank God the MUNI bus was going slow. One small nudge and the girl was throw off the bike and on to the ride walk on the incline going up.

I have seen other accidents more on roads that have heavy vehicular traffic.

I have seen many accident involving serious accidents on Market Street, on Lombard Street, on Van Ness, and on Mission Street.

Many of my other friends have witnessed people get injured seriously and sometimes death.

At the many meetings dealing with such issues - I have expressed my feelings and view. Often times - some want the general public to go with the flow - without any dialog. This is wrong.

Let us not compare San Francisco to other European countries where they have a better sense of behavior when it comes to driving.

Those that bike in many other countries in Europe - are less prone to jump the lane and confront vehicles. In Holland there are no rules - everyone rides and the cars with them. It works for them and I do not feel it will work here in San Francisco that type of pandemonium. 

It is amazing to see some of those riding bikes take on a MUNI bus on Market Street. You would think this ridiculous but it happens all the time. Just ask any MUNI driver on Market Street. I admire their patience.

We, in San Francisco do not have a Transit First City that works.

If we had a working Transit First City - than we could have addressed the very heavy vehicular traffic. I take Public Transport and have been taking it for over 35 years.

I agree we have too may cars and must find a way to keep them out of certain areas.

Every single year I see more cars and more congestion - especially down town San Francisco. 

Our BUS GRID was created to cater to people moving in the direction of down town. Nothing much has changed with all the talk - all these many years.

Someone bragged that our City and County of San Francisco - being a Transit First City - and that is all talk. Nothing more and nothing less.

Recently there was talk about creating a bike lane on Cargo Street in the Bayview Hunters Point area.

On any day - hundreds of trucks carry concrete, aggregate, the Recology vehicles, other vehicles ply on this road.

The road is full of pot holes and has not been maintained.

Why would we want to create such a situation and put the lives of innocent people driving a bike at risk? Mention about a Bay Trail that has not be planned well?

There are some people who think - if they have an idea - that they should implement it - with vetting the idea.

Those riding bikes in San Francisco have to deal with hills. The places where the land is flat - you have to deal with cars moving fast.

If we plan to have buffer zones for those that ride bikes - then this cost money - and may be we need them - but let anyone riding a bike pay a license fee. Just like those driving pay for a license to drive. Nothing comes free.

I would add an insurance license too. We the people could not pay millions of dollars for those that get injured - head injuries cost thousands just for a few days in the hospital.

I have nothing against closing the street and allowing only bikes to have access to the roads. I am for this especially when parents are riding with the children and youth.

This whole idea to increase bike ridership and brag that those who bike have a membership of over 12,000 - does not intimidate me.

The main factor of SAFETY has not been discussed in detail and who pays for injuries and why do we have so many deaths linked to mostly young people riding bikes?

Market Street is not bike friendly and daily when I go down town I witness - some of those riding bikes - break every rule and adversely impact not only those that drive but pedestrians too. 

Now, this is totally - wrong.

At one time we had this issue with bike messengers but now we have others who are worse than those that sometime have to hurry to deliver their packages or documents.

Over fifty percent of those living in San Francisco do not ride bikes. So we are working more or less with fifty percent and of those may be thirty percent want to ride bikes.

But those that want bike lanes will lie, talk about data that is all screwed up and paint a rosy picture about everyone wanting to bike. What about SAFETY? What about etiquette? What about consideration?

The Environmental Impact Study was totally ignored the first time linked to the Bike Plan - and showed the haughtiness of those that want to impose bike lanes of decent constituents. The matter went to Court - and stayed there for a long time.

Not all has been solved - and as I said we do need bike lanes and we also need bike areas that are safe. Our hills make that difficult - most every where - but we must have the ability to dialog and come out with a viable plan.

Again and again some one wants to pull a fast one - and as long as that is done - you folks that are the leaders of the Bike Coalition will be in deep trouble - and more if decent people do not trust you folks - than you are really in very deep - trouble.