06/28/15 7:00am
06/28/2015 7:00 AM

Your editorial, Southold Town Police Chief Martin Flatley and opinion letters against bike riders would suggest bicycles are a major problem on our roads. I’ve respectfully got to ask whether they are kidding.

Have any of you ridden on our roads lately? It’s hardly car drivers whose lives are at risk. I rode this morning and cars, trucks, buses and motorcycles sped by, some within inches. A car pulled out in front of me, a truck towing a large trailer passed me across double yellow lines when I was already passing a truck pulled over to the side of the road. Someone opened a car door in front of me, a car took a turn onto my side of the road right beside me and fewer and fewer vehicles care to use their directionals, so cyclists don’t know which way they’re turning.

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09/07/13 1:03pm
09/07/2013 1:03 PM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | A few hundred riders raced through the streets of Greenport Saturday morning.

Several hundred riders, supporters and volunteers gathered in Greenport’s Mitchell Park Saturday morning for the North Fork’s Wounded Warrior Project Soldier Ride.

The 15, 30 or 60-mile ride is part of a three-day rehabilitative event that includes bike fittings for warriors, an alumni ride and a picnic. The finish line for the rides is the Greenport Skate Park.

The ride is dedicated to Shelter Island native Lt. Joseph Theinert, who was killed in the line of duty in Afghanistan on June 4, 2010.

09/05/13 8:00am
09/05/2013 8:00 AM
GLEN GOLDSTEIN COURTESY PHOTO  |  For-profit events such as the North Fork Century ride (pictured) are no longer allowed in Southold Town.

GLEN GOLDSTEIN FILE PHOTO | Bicyclists would be wise to remember a few basic rules, one reader suggests.

To the editor:

I am not a serious bicycle rider, but I do occasionally mix it up out there with our summer traffic. I am a motor vehicle driver, however, and over the past couple of weeks I’ve witnessed three categories of bicycle/motor vehicle incidents that I believe are worth mentioning. Hopefully, it’s not too late in the season to save an injury.

First, while driving on a shady, country lane, I encountered a bicycle coming straight at me in the shoulder of my lane. New York state law requires bicycles to ride in the right-hand lane in the direction of other vehicle traffic. The reason behind this is that the distance between bike and car closes so fast when riding “head to head” that things can happen more quickly than either vehicle can safely anticipate. Another reason is that at intersections, right-turning drivers don’t normally expect any vehicles coming at them from the right.

The second instance involves bicycles riding single-file. Again, this is required by state law, but it is so frequently ignored, especially on our back country roads. It is exactly on these more narrow roads where passing widths are reduced, which makes this requirement so important.

Finally, wear your bicycle helmet! Many bicyclists believe helmets are for when they hit another vehicle, and they reason (maybe correctly) that their helmet won’t do them much good, so why wear one? But the main reason for wearing bike helmets is to protect your head when you fall for whatever reason. Think about it: your unprotected head is six feet or more above the pavement, and your hands are holding onto the handlebars for dear life during a fall. That leaves your head completely unprotected.

This was brought home to us recently when we were invited to a friend’s home for dinner. When we arrived, everyone seemed pretty gloomy and our hosts were not in sight. Turns out their daughter had just been in a bike accident and they were waiting for more news. Fortunately, their daughter was wearing a helmet, and except for some temporary cosmetic issues, she’ll be fine. If she had not been wearing her helmet, the story would have had a much sadder ending.

With school about to begin, there will be many more kids on the road heading off to school on their bikes. So, bicyclers and drivers alike, please consider each other when out there “sharing the road.”

Jim Baker, New Suffolk