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Thread: Safety and the WOD: a Survey

  1. #21
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    hozn is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mstone View Post
    One thing that should be emphasized is that, perceptions and comfort aside, the W&OD is remarkably safe. (Suggesting that draconian enforcement isn't necessary anyway.)
    This is my sense. I have witnessed a couple of minor "interactions" over the years -- bike+dog being top of the list. On the whole this is a very drama-free way to commute. The only place I've seen a cyclist and a pedestrian collide was, somewhat ironically, on one of the closed-to-traffic Beach Dr. sections on the weekend. I generally avoid riding the W&OD (or Custis, MVT) for any sort of "serious riding" on weekends as it is a lot busier and is not a good place to ride fast. I do use the trail for riding with my son (towing the trailer), and I have absolutely no sympathy for people that think trailers and peds are clogging up the trail and messing up their training intervals. Go ride on the road; that's where the [unflagged] strava segments are anyway.

  2. #22
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    For whatever reason, the survey is wigging out on me saying I did not pick an answer for #14, even though I did - "better education". Oh well. With the coming of spring and a buttload of trail users I hope to only use the W&OD early on early weekend mornings to get out west for long rides. Update: Nevermind... pick your top 2 ways to improve safety? Pfffhhht... all those reasons suck. Where's simple common courtesy?

    PS - the fox that hangs out just west of Gallows road is getting bolder. My wife was out there this weekend and saw the fox so she stopped to watch it. It proceeded to run across the trail 3 more times in a happy, playful way. She got a couple of pictures. A month ago, I stopped to snap a photo, but it ran off before I could get my camera out.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuyContinental View Post
    I suspect that question 7- "Do you come to a full stop at intersection crossings?" Is going to come back to haunt us. "90% of daily bike commuters responded that they blow through intersections". At the very least that one needed to be two questions: 1. Do you stop at lighted or major intersections and 2. Do you stop at the 50+ tiny crossings.
    I don't stop at the intersection of the WOD and Custis trail.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Kelley View Post
    I don't stop at the intersection of the WOD and Custis trail.
    Yeah really. Last time I was on the W&OD, 2 weeks ago, drivers were pulling up and stopping as I approached all the intersections around Vienna, and waved me through. So if I had stopped it would have simply created a ton of confusion and pissed everyone off. Instead I slowed down so that I could stop if necessary and politely waved a thank you.

    It was pretty sweet. I'm sure the goodwill will end in the next few weeks as more and more people get on the trail and drivers get tired of waiting, but it was nice while it lasted.

    I wish there was an option to ban charity rides and runs from using the trail. At least charity events of a certain size. If you're a big enough charity, you should be able to hire some traffic directors and buy some orange cones to use the actual roads.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuyContinental View Post
    I suspect that question 7- "Do you come to a full stop at intersection crossings?" Is going to come back to haunt us.
    In my email, I mentioned that this question assumed the person answering is a cyclist, which is a subset of the trail users taking the survey. I think they will get meaningless results because they will have no way of distinguishing answers provided by cyclists, walkers, runners, equestrians and whatever else.

    Quote Originally Posted by creadinger View Post
    I wish there was an option to ban charity rides and runs from using the trail. At least charity events of a certain size.
    I also made this point in my email. The "Team in Training" running groups tend to clump up and run across the full breadth of the trail on Saturday and Sunday mornings in spring and fall. I noted that it would be very easy to get the message to these folks via shoe stores and training promoters -- the latter are running with the gangs they are training.

    You are all continuing to raise good points -- make sure you are getting them to the NVRPA and not just this forum!

    Liz

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by creadinger View Post
    Last time I was on the W&OD, 2 weeks ago, drivers were pulling up and stopping as I approached all the intersections around Vienna, and waved me through. So if I had stopped it would have simply created a ton of confusion and pissed everyone off. Instead I slowed down so that I could stop if necessary and politely waved a thank you.
    I commute Falls Church to Vienna on the W&OD all the time, and drivers stop at the crossings 90% of the time (exceptions tend to be during rush hour and in the dark). It does create an awkward situation, as nice as it is for folks to stop. I've even had Vienna Police stop for me by the Rec Center more than once, causing me to roll straight through the intersection without stopping. Weird.

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