In an extended discussion of a cycling fatality in a Chicago Alley Cat Race on the Fredcast the issue of bicycles obeying traffic laws played a larger and larger role as the discussion went on. That is, how strict should cyclists be regarding obeying traffic laws? I must say that while my instinct is to obey traffic laws punctiliously, in practice I don't. In fact, I've come to believe that in urban riding notobeying the laws is safer. A cyclist runs less risk of getting killed by right-turning cars if the take off while the light is red. More importantly, if the right lane is blocked ahead, riding through the stop light allows the cyclist to safely ride in the left lane past the blockage without having to compete with left-lane vehicular traffic. On the other hand I believe riding opposite to traffic is insane and should be more strictly enforced. Similarly, I am against riding on the sidewalk, but have to admit that even there on occasion the safest route is to ride on the sidewalk. But all things considered, I'm against it. Keeping in mind that the traffic laws were made to control auto traffic, how do you feel about these laws for cyclists? Take the poll to the right.
Rode the loop and then some today for errands. 18 miles on the day.