Monthly Archives: March 2014

Bicyclist speeds up to avoid getting creamed by truck driven in the bike lane

Location

400 W Kinzie (at Kingsbury), Chicago, IL
42nd Ward, Alderman Reilly

Type

Passed closely

What happened

A smaller food delivery truck started merging into the eastbound Kinzie bike lane immediately after I crossed the bridge at Kinzie and the river. I had to swerve right and sprint to avoid the truck’s tires which were about 1 foot into the lane. When I cleared the truck I looked back at the driver who seemed to be annoyed to see me.

Steven’s note: this bike lane is now over three years and has no changes or upgrades since installation in May 2011. It had some restriping but with paint and not thermoplastic so the wear is noticeable. Most of the white, flexible posts are gone. At the point where this person had their close call there were no more posts and the bike lane was half filled with snow, as they mention below.

I rode by here several hours later and noticed some of the confusion this dilapidated situation and insufficient design causes: a driver drove in the bike lane all the way up to the stop sign, to the right of the three remaining posts (the ones that block the entry have been missing for months). 

Suggested improvements

It would be rad if the city did a better job of clearing the snow pile right at the east end of the bridge so I had more room to avoid this. Additionally, it would be helpful if the barrier poles which have been steadily were replaced to create a physical protection. I see people driving in the white here a lot.

Bicyclist speeds up at Milwaukee/Chicago to avoid getting run over by cement truck

Location

802 N Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago, IL
27th Ward, Alderman Burnett

Type

Right hook

What happened

I was biking southbound in the bike lane going through the intersection just after the green. I had just crossed the crosswalk when a cement truck on my left, preparing to make a right turn onto Chicago Avenue, started merging into the bike lane (of course there was no turn signal). The cyclist in front of me was cleared, but I was not yet. I sprinted to get out of the way.

Suggested improvements

There should really be a bike box in front of the turn lane here. Turning vehicles are almost always hanging out in the bike lane and drivers are not super mindful. I’d feel better if I could always be way in front of traffic stopped at the light.