file Bike Passing Etiquette

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11 Jul 2018 17:51 - 11 Jul 2018 17:52 #3384 by Erin Black
Bike Passing Etiquette was created by Erin Black
I just wanted to throw something out there to gauge opinions. I started commuting to work a few weeks ago and have noticed a trend. I have a bell on my bike and when passing other riders on the paths around the lakes, I always ring my bell once to signal I'm coming up on another rider. I thought this was perfectly acceptable, since not everyone understands English and my voice doesn't carry very well.

Over the past few weeks some people have taken real offense to my bell ringing. Just today a women barked "Don't ring that bell at me" while passing her and a few days ago another women yelled "Say on your left if you're going to pass me". Am I in the wrong here, or are these people just not aware of what the bell is signaling? Just want to know if I'm the jerk in this situation.
Last edit: 11 Jul 2018 17:52 by Erin Black.

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11 Jul 2018 18:02 - 11 Jul 2018 18:04 #3385 by Paul Loughman
Replied by Paul Loughman on topic Bike Passing Etiquette
You're not being a jerk. People who use combined use paths; those for pedestrians and bikes; should know the etiquette that both parties should be observing. Some don't, and that includes, unfortunately, some bicyclists.

Continue doing what you are doing. Let the negatives from those who don't know or understand what and why you are ringing your bell when you approach, roll off you like water on a ducks back. ;)
Last edit: 11 Jul 2018 18:04 by Paul Loughman.

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12 Jul 2018 10:20 #3386 by Mike Beadles
Replied by Mike Beadles on topic Bike Passing Etiquette
I guess I've seen just about every possible reaction (from fellow riders, and motorists) to just about every possible situation.
Most people are out to have a good time, and truly enjoy riding, and thank goodness for those, keeps my faith in humanity.
Then some people are just plain crabby, and crab at every opportunity they can.
I do use a bell, I do use a "on your left!" (especially loudly when I see an erratic rider wearing ear buds), I do ride as predictable and straight as possible.
I guess I view bicycling in a truly yin-yang perspective, I don't expect everyone to be nice, so when I do see the nasty times, that just makes the good times even better!

Oh, and I guess a last point, it's always better to communicate more, than less, so bell, a happy and cheerful hello or good morning as I'm passing, or an on your left, all are good options, and I will keep using one of those.

Keep on riding!
Mike B

Mike Beadles

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12 Jul 2018 11:43 #3387 by Edward Eroe
Replied by Edward Eroe on topic Bike Passing Etiquette
Erin,

You are doing the right thing. When I started using a bell 1 1/2 years ago about half the pedestrians thanked me. Another bicyclist has not but I have not had anyone say anything negative to me. I appreciate it when other cyclists either yell out "on your left" or ring a bell because then I know they are there. I hate it when other cyclists do not communicate and come inches away from you passing.

Edward

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13 Jul 2018 08:05 #3396 by Stephan Hodges
Replied by Stephan Hodges on topic Bike Passing Etiquette
Saying 'on your left' or similar seems to be the Minnesota official suggestion. You see this on some trails. Other trails just say to "announce".

I wouldn't know specifically what a bell signified, so I'd recommend doing both.

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13 Jul 2018 08:50 #3402 by Bill Bennett
Replied by Bill Bennett on topic Bike Passing Etiquette
I think that you should keep on doing what you've been doing. However, in my case, I've lost just enough hearing that I can't hear most bells anymore, especially the ones with a single ding. A loud passing on your left works best for me.

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