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Posted by on Dec 14, 2012 in Education | 7 comments

Achieving a Vision

Presentation at CNU20:

In the video presentation above, I explain the root cause of the beliefs that inhibit bicycling in America, why the prevailing strategy can’t fix it, and offer a strategy that can. In addition to teaching people to be successful anywhere, this strategy includes many progressive infrastructure ideas that are cost-effective, versatile, expandable and supportive of successful bicyclists.

For more on this topic:

Strategy for a Cyclist-Friendly Community by Keri Caffrey

Co-founder, CyclingSavvy
Executive Director, American Bicycling Education Association

Through two decades of bicycling, I observed many close calls and conflicts as an individual transportation cyclist as well as a recreational group rider. Studying the behavior of both cyclists and motorists, I became convinced that the greatest challenge facing American bicycling is lack of education, coupled with the destructive belief system Americans have developed about our roads.

It has become my mission to correct this problem and empower individual bicyclists to ride with the confidence and skills to reach any destination by bike. I believe we can transform our traffic culture, through education and social marketing, into one which recognizes that roads are for all people, not just the ones driving cars.

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7 Comments

  1. Great presentation, many good points. Just a sidebar note about my state; Vermont Law requires that cyclists have to ride “as far to the right as is practicable” we are also not allowed to impede traffic. Thus riding out in the lane can be a very fine line for the Vermont Bicyclist. -R

    • This presentation is not about state laws. It is about cultural beliefs and how they influence behavior, confidence, perceptions of bicycling safety, and how we can move forward to make things better for bicyclists.

      Some state laws conflict with, and undermine, bicyclist safety. For more about laws, See:

      U.S. Bicycle Laws by State

      Equality

      Enforcement

  2. Also, IMHO, there are too many people on the roads (both Cyclists & Motorists) saying stuff like “I believe, we believe” etc. You sound like a religious person preaching, how about talking more about what the LAW says, which is what we’ve all agreed on in the social contract that is our society.

  3. So Bomber, are you saying the current laws are perfect and must not be changed? Perhaps they were handed down by god? We DO talk about what the law says, and we encourage people to adhere to it. But bicycling-related laws in many states run contrary to the safety interests of bicyclists. Are you saying “Too bad”?

  4. I’m not saying that at all, and as a commuter logging thousands of miles per year I definitely want the role of bicycles to be increased in our society. However as I said there are far too many people out there operating based on how they “think” or believe operating should be done, who ever looks at the driver’s manuals or the actual laws to find out what the law says? too darn few and people on both sides are quick to spout about what they remember from driver’s ed even if it was 20 year prior. and it would be good to keep cyclists (and motorist) well in the habit of doing so. I see zillions of outlaw cyclists who give us all a bad name. Safety sure, but bicycle law for your state is just as important. This past fall I was at fist-a-cuffs with an off-duty cop who was absolutely sure that I had no right to be in the road. He even attempted to make me lay down in traffic but would not supply his badge, name, or any id. I told him to stuff it thinking he was pretending to be a cop. Thus this illustrates why cyclists have to know their local law better than the cops who are only concern with motor vehicles. This needs to be emphasized to riders to keep checking their local laws. In terms of what should be set up for cyclists for safety etc. that should be pushed to law makers.

    • Thanks for clarifying. I was kinda confused about your meaning as well. I totally agree! It’s frightening to see how many licensed drivers don’t know basic laws that pertain to motor vehicle operation. There is almost complete ignorance of laws pertaining to pedestrians and bicyclists.

  5. Nothing in the law should require you to endanger yourself or others to obey it.
    And that is one of the problems, too many laws do just that.And too many people feel justified to allow that.
    The foundation of our system is that all persons are entitled to their lives, and that we have an equal right to that. No one is more entitled to theirs, or should endanger yours.
    If the laws won’t support that, change them.

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