As a cyclist, pedestrian and sometimes driver, I can relate to many different road users and I try to be very aware of my impact on these users, especially when driving a several thousand pound vehicle. Unfortunately, not all drivers ride bicycles or walk very much, which becomes acutely obvious when you try to cross Pennsylvania Ave at Market St or many other intersections in this city. In these situations, you get to experience how unaware some automobile operators can be when they rush to make turns before their light changes to red, not realizing that their mode of transportation can be very intimidating to the less protected of us (i.e. pedestrians & bicyclists). In fact, frequently, drivers look confused when pedestrians in the crosswalk yell or give them less than pleasant looks when their vehicles travel within inches of the pedestrians unprotected bodies.
With that said, here is a blog post from Alex Marshall at Citiwire.net where he explores the idea of "fairness" as it relates to our role as a road user.
In the Bump and Jostle of the Street, Who Bears the Burden for Safety?
ALEX MARSHALL / AUG 17 2012
For Release Friday, August 17, 2012
What strikes you as fair, as every parent knows, depends on what you're doing and who's doing what to whom. What can seem unassailably fair from one standpoint can seem quite the opposite from another.
This applies to both small children and large nation states. It also applies to city streets.
In recent years, cyclists and pedestrians have returned to our streets in greater numbers. Their presence has brought a renewed examination of what is fair, and different answers.