Danger on the road for Vail Valley cyclists | VailDaily.com

Danger on the road for Vail Valley cyclists

Steve Sheldon
Vail, CO, Colorado

I don’t really want to add to the rhetoric of this cycling debate, and actually, it’s not a debate. The results of a vehicle versus a bicycle are not up for discussion.

But my wife and I got run off the road twice yesterday while minding our own business riding single file and to the right of the white line while climbing Battle Mountain (and there are no bike paths up there). Both times were on straight sections, and there wasn’t even a hint of oncoming traffic, yet both truckers gave us less than 6 inches clearance and forced us off the road. I might add that I found car drivers yesterday to be very courteous. It always seems to be commercial drivers who try to kill us.

There is absolutely no need for this. Someone is going to get seriously injured. If it isn’t me on my bike and I catch up to you, I guarantee I will not be able to control my rage.

I rode with a peloton of cyclists for years in Florida, and more than once when they caught up with a driver who tried to run us off the road, they dragged him out of his truck and beat the crap out of him. Notice I didn’t say “her”; it’s almost never a her.

I hope the same thing doesn’t happen here. But I can tell you from experience, when all you are trying to do is enjoy a nice day on your bike and someone assaults you with their vehicle, you get real hot real quick. It’s part of our survival instinct.

I’ll also agree that group cyclists sometimes are their own worst enemies by ignoring traffic laws. However, that does not give motorists the right to commit murder with their vehicles. I hope the state of Colorado passes vehicular-homicide laws one day to protect cyclists.

A traffic ticket in exchange for a human life doesn’t pass the smell test.

Steve Sheldon


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