Today’s Headlines

  • Sinkhole Opens at Haight and Ashbury Streets, Second One in Neighborhood (Hoodline)
  • AC Transit Pays $2.5M to Bicyclist Hit by Bus Driver in Emeryville Three Years Ago (CBS)
  • BART to Add 14 New Cars to Fleet by Recycling Old Cars (SF ExamSF Bay)
  • BART Looks Into Improving Station Access for Bikes, Pedestrians, and Transit (Green Caltrain)
  • Alameda County Transportation Commission Approves Free Student Bus Pass Pilot Program (SF Bay)
  • San Mateo County Pays $12.5M for Street Upgrades on Middlefield Road (KQED, Peninsula Press)
  • Golden Gate Ferry Studies Feasibility of Expanding Service Down Tiburon Peninsula (MIJ)
  • ABC Films Sequence of Crews Testing SMART Train That Will Connect Marin and Novato
  • Mountain View Pedestrian Dies After Being Hit by Driver Thursday Morning (CBS)
  • Stanford Offers Therapy to People Who Want to Try “Eco-Friendly” Transportation (Cyclelicious)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • jd_x

    The second worst part about the video of the AC transit driver hitting the bicyclist (the worst part, of course, being the actual impact), was how she says it wasn’t her fault and she didn’t see the bicyclist. This is arguably the biggest problem with our car-centric society, that we think that just because you didn’t see somebody (especially when they had the right of way) that it wasn’t your fault. We would all drive much less and much more carefully when we did when we truly appreciated the responsibility you undertake when driving tons of steel with hundreds of horsepower, limited visibility, and lots of distractions.

  • RMN

    The Santa Clara VTA Alum Rock BRT is in a bad state. Construction was halted in July, the street is a mess, business way down, and the new completion date is now December 2016. It was supposed to be an 18 month project, completing Oct 2015. VTA is now offering to pay to pay businesses up to $50k each to avoid lawsuits.

    Meanwhile, zero press releases from VTA, and no coverage at all in mainstream media (SJ Mercury or TV). Jennifer Wadsworth at SanJoseInside.com has been covering this. Start here and work backwards (4 articles since July):

    http://www.sanjoseinside.com/2015/10/20/vta-offers-cash-to-businesses-hurt-by-brt-construction-delays/

  • CamBam415

    Wow, the CBS video on the story was interesting. It shows that the AC transit driver was going 3X the allowed speed around the left turn that hit the cyclist.

    Also, I wonder, from a liability standpoint, what part the stopped AC transit bus across the intersection (that hid the cyclist from view), played in the settlement? Why was an AC transit bus stopped in a lane of traffic??? If it was at a stop loading/unloading passengers, it should have been stopped curbside, which would’ve enabled the cyclist to safely pass on the left of the bus instead of being funneled to the right in the bike lane. Had the cyclist been able to pass on the left, she would’ve been more visible to the turning AC transit bus that hit her (and she would’ve had a better view of the AC transit bus turning towards her).

    My last observation is that this serves as a good reminder to myself that when passing larger vehicles at intersections/driveways/crosswalks, etc, to ride defensively so that I had time to protect myself (as I know most drivers won’t be paying attention to me).

    Glad the cyclist wasn’t killed, is moving on with her life and that she is back on her bike.

  • Andy Chow

    The AC Transit driver was clearly turning too fast (you also have to consider comfort and safety of passenger. But it seems that she was turning to get back into the bus yard without passengers), but I can’t imagine that passing a stopped bus on the right and entering the intersection as something that I would do on a bike. I don’t know the reason why the bus was stopped in front of the intersection. But that fact should be a caution.

    If you’re driving and you see a car ahead on an adjacent lane is stopped, a good habit is to slow down enough and know the reason for the vehicle to stop, and proceed if it is clear. What if the car is yielding a pedestrian? You need to be ready to stop if it is so.

    A lot of bicyclists think that they should always stick to the right side of the road regardless of the situation, but the law clearly allows taking the whole lane in certain situations. For transit buses, they may have a stop right after the intersection. So it is generally a bad idea to try to pass a bus on right. If you know that the bus going to make a stop, it is better to get behind the bus, let the bus get to the curb without you being in the middle, and pass the bus on the left.

  • Andy Chow

    This is the same agency that wants to build dedicated lanes on El Camino Real (more of the same for west side of the county), and wants billions more for a BART subway next year. This mess can only erode the confidence for the agency. Newspaper like SJ Mercury has an agenda so it is not in their interest to cover a story that goes against their agenda.

  • Gezellig

    Lolz:

    http://media2.fdncms.com/sfweekly/imager/u/original/4188819/fullsizerender_1_.jpg

    Airbnb! Your favorite passive-aggressive neighbor who wants a gold star, concern-troll pretends to care about bike lanes. Also…doesn’t understand how taxes work.

    http://www.sfweekly.com/thesnitch/2015/10/21/passive-aggressive-pro-airbnb-ads-appear-on-muni-shleters

    No matter how you feel about Prop F one wonders how much actual bike-lane progress we could’ve seen if Airbnb had spent even a fraction of the $8 million it used to lobby against F on, ya know, bike lanes.

  • murphstahoe

    Now we know the real reason the signs came down. Ed Lee does not want to be told to put in Bike Lanes.

  • RMN

    I’ve been the guy who passed stopped traffic while in the far right bike lane, only to find a left turning vehicle in my path at the intersection (Arastradero, crossing Manuela). I was fortunate that the car was ahead of me, so I hit the side of the car and went over, not the other way. The police officer told me that the “at fault” party is always the left turning vehicle, but the lesson to me was that if I cannot see the intersection, someone crossing the intersection may not see me, and fault really doesn’t matter if you are dead. In this case the bus driver was at fault, and AC transit is paying. I’m glad the rider is recovering, but better to ride to be safe, not just right.

    The stopped AC transit bus traveling the same direction as the cyclist may have been waiting for traffic to clear in the next block ahead, or waiting for left turning traffic to clear the intersection when the light turned green, or ??? I don’t think it matters.

  • 94110

    Regarding a bike lane on Mission at Trumbull…

    How does it connect to San Jose Ave in the North? I don’t expect it to continue over the hill on Mission.

    How does it Connect to Alemany? The grade separation here is a problem.

    Where does it end in the South? Mission stays very close to the bike lane on Alemany to the South, reducing its utility. But it might help businesses along Mission. Sunday Streets down there is always nice.

    I’m not really seeing it, but it’s good thought experiment.

  • Gezellig

    Come to think of it Mission in general could use bike lanes throughout, even with Alemany paralleling it at points. As with any major corridor it’s lined with businesses, residents, services and transit options so that alone is worth it. After all:

    https://c2.staticflickr.com/4/3698/12906206594_3ab3839c14_c.jpg

    Besides, even Alemany is out of the way if your origin and destination points are along Mission St. This has happened to me numerous times.

  • Prinzrob

    It’s unknown whether the bicyclist was passing the stopped bus on the right to reach the intersection, or whether the bus driver half-passed the bicyclist to reach the light first then stopped, pinning her to the curb with nowhere to go. I don’t want to make any assumptions, but the latter has happened to me plenty of times while biking, due to impatient bus operators who try to pass and merge/turn with not enough room instead of slowing and merging/turning behind me. The only way to avoid this is to take the lane, which can also be a very dicey proposition on San Pablo.

    Yes, it is not safe to pass a bus or large truck on the right at an intersection, even in a bike lane, but this does happen so professional drivers need to be trained to look for and avoid these conflicts whenever possible, even when the bicyclist is being negligent.