This morning at 7:40 AM a Minneapolis biker was hit by a semi-truck and killed. The identity of the biker has not been released, but I am familiar with the intersection where the accident occurred. It’s no surprise that this tragedy involved an ill-conceived bike lane (death stripe) that pits bikers against vehicles moving at speeds in excess of 40 mph. The bike lane terminates in the middle of intersections and leaves a biker at the absolute mercy of inattentive drivers taking left hand turns. When will this madness end?
Lone wolf bikers think that safety is achieved by reaching a “critical mass”; more bikes on the streets equals more attentive drivers. I’m not discounting this notion in its entirety, but there are a lot of bikes where this latest accident occurred. Critical mass did nothing to save this poor soul’s life. The only way to make biking safer is to completely separate automobiles from bikes. How many more people have to die for the urban planners to figure this out?
Why can’t the bike lanes be situated on low traffic side streets? Such a solution would please drivers, bikers, and the residents of the streets with bike lanes. Until then, please PLEASE don’t ride on these asinine death-striped routes. It’s your life and you only get one.