Dodging Bicycles in D.C.
By Diane Gibbs
I live on a main avenue in the District. If I had a buck for every time I was almost hit by a speeding bicycle, I’d have a nice nest egg by now.
Recently, I was crossing an intersection near my home. I had a green light, plus the walk sign. Suddenly, a bicycle going faster than the speed of light shot down the hill, ran the red light and missed me by a hair. If this cyclist had hit me at that speed, I’m sure I would have been maimed — or worse.
Another day, while I was waiting for a bus on the sidewalk, a cyclist almost hit me. She told me I should stay to one side of the sidewalk. We had words. I told her she should be in the street. It got ugly.
On another occasion, a young man hit my friend and knocked him to the ground. This cyclist never asked if my friend was hurt. Instead, he said: “Oh, mister! Do ya think my bike is damaged?”
I have researched the city’s laws regarding biking on sidewalks. The mayor’s office says there is a law barring bicycles from the sidewalks downtown, but they do not have to be kept in the streets in other areas of the city. I wish somebody would change that. I’m tired of looking over my shoulder every time I take a step outside.
We all wonder sometimes how we will die when our time comes, and over the years I’ve thought about it. But leaving this Earth because of a bike? Who would have thought?
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