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Thread: Close Call: 11th St SE and N St SE

  1. #1
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    Default Close Call: 11th St SE and N St SE

    I've only been commuting in DC since August, but it's now been the third close call at this location. When I'm coming down the hill toward the Navy Yard gate, I've had cars suddenly swerve to block the bike lane, stop on a dime, and then (leisurely) let someone out onto the sidewalk instead of doing the smart thing and going down to the Visitor's Center.

    Not sure how to combat this. I already have a 140 dB horn, which elicited a "WTF" last time. Today when it happened, the guy yelled at me to "quit shaking your head and just go on by" (in the 4 inches leeway I had).

    I've commuted for nearly a decade in Newport News and Ventura County, but I'm having a hard time getting used to the narcissistic behavior of drivers and cyclists here. Any tips would be appreciated as long as they don't include "blow through red lights and stop signs while going against traffic" - I see far too much of that already.

  2. #2
    jrenaut's Avatar
    jrenaut is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    Welcome to the forum! Unfortunate that it was close calls that brought you here rather than running into a super nice forum member on a trail or something.

    I have found that the nicer I can manage to be, the more headway i seem to make with drivers behaving badly. You probably know that this is difficult when someone has deposited a giant metal box in your lap.

    Also, please note that I'm pretty sure a 140 dB horn on a bicycle is actually illegal in DC, though it's unlikely anyone is going to cite you for it unless you blow it at a police officer.

  3. #3
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    Have you considered taking the lane coming down that hill? That would make you much more visible to drivers, as well as give you more space to react to those who drive unpredictably.

    Presumably it is much quicker and easier for these drivers to drop passengers here than at the Visitor Center. So even if it's illegal (is it?), you'll probably continue to see these maneuvers in the absence of constant enforcement.

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  5. #4
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    Also, 140dB is quite the horn! Remind me never to ride within a couple blocks of you.

  6. #5
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    I only go through that intersection coming back from Anacostia and going north on 11th (I don't like the layout of the bike lanes coming off the bridge). I'm not clear which direction you're going on 11th, but if you're going downhill and have some speed, I'd get out of the bike lane and take the lane so cars can't overtake you just to cut you off for a bike lane drop off.

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