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Cycling in Waterloo Region
(07-21-2017, 03:26 PM)chutten Wrote: Boats require a pleasure craft operator's license which presumably would have to be revoked separately... but I don't know the law well enough to know where to look.

Pivoting to a cycling question: what's the legality of pedaling alongside a line of stopped cars (this is lane splitting/filtering, yes?) waiting for a light when there's no bike box at the intersection and no bike lane alongside? I'm pretty sure that's a "no", but I've seen it done often enough to wonder.

It isn't technically legal here (it is in the UK and in California, possibly other places).  But it's certainly common here for various reasons.

When there is a paved shoulder, this is a grey area, given that bikes are allowed to use the shoulder, and the shoulder is not the lane, I'd say there's no defined legality here.

When there is a bike lane it is obviously completely legal.  

Drivers rarely make a distinction.
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(07-21-2017, 03:38 PM)danbrotherston Wrote:
(07-21-2017, 03:26 PM)chutten Wrote: Boats require a pleasure craft operator's license which presumably would have to be revoked separately... but I don't know the law well enough to know where to look.

Pivoting to a cycling question: what's the legality of pedaling alongside a line of stopped cars (this is lane splitting/filtering, yes?) waiting for a light when there's no bike box at the intersection and no bike lane alongside? I'm pretty sure that's a "no", but I've seen it done often enough to wonder.

It isn't technically legal here (it is in the UK and in California, possibly other places).  But it's certainly common here for various reasons.

When there is a paved shoulder, this is a grey area, given that bikes are allowed to use the shoulder, and the shoulder is not the lane, I'd say there's no defined legality here.

When there is a bike lane it is obviously completely legal.  

Drivers rarely make a distinction.

Do you have a reference for this? I've never been able to find a section of the HTA that answers the question definitively.
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(07-21-2017, 03:26 PM)chutten Wrote: Pivoting to a cycling question: what's the legality of pedaling alongside a line of stopped cars (this is lane splitting/filtering, yes?) waiting for a light when there's no bike box at the intersection and no bike lane alongside? I'm pretty sure that's a "no", but I've seen it done often enough to wonder.

If there is a bike lane, you can go up to the front of the line. If there is no bike lane you have to stop behind the last car as if you were a car too. When I do this and I'm decelerating toward that last car, I check over my shoulder and if nobody is there, I move about a third over, sometimes in the centre. If there's a car right beside me decelerating at the same rate it gets a bit tricky, but it usually works out.

I've always found drivers exceptionally respectful for me when I do this, and have never had an issue. As we all accelerate together, once my speed peaks and the traffic starts moving faster, I of course move back over as far to the right as I can to let them go by.
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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And then there are the two people on bicycles (I hesitate to use the word “cyclist”) I encountered this afternoon as I was driving along Erb into Uptown from Fischer Hallman. First one, west of University, coming towards me in the bicycle lane. Second one, east of Westmount, coming towards me in my lane (albeit over at the curb). Absolutely unbelievable. I hope those people don’t drive cars, though — that level of stupidity in someone operating a motor vehicle could be severely hazardous to others. And of course many will view people like that as representative of the entire cycling community.
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It's dangerous imo, basically riding oneself into a right hook.

Regarding ebikes it think the govt should have regulated them just like gasoline mopeds or even used the low speed motorcycle regulations they have more in common with small scooters than bicycles.
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(07-21-2017, 04:53 PM)ijmorlan Wrote: And then there are the two people on bicycles (I hesitate to use the word “cyclist”) I encountered this afternoon as I was driving along Erb into Uptown from Fischer Hallman. First one, west of University, coming towards me in the bicycle lane. Second one, east of Westmount, coming towards me in my lane (albeit over at the curb). Absolutely unbelievable. I hope those people don’t drive cars, though — that level of stupidity in someone operating a motor vehicle could be severely hazardous to others. And of course many will view people like that as representative of the entire cycling community.

I always have a hard time blaming cyclists for breaking the rules.  I always do my best to follow the rules, but ignoring all the bullying by drivers, I am frequently forced to break the law, how many red lights have I been forced to go through because I cannot activate the detector, and no car is forthcoming.  How many crosswalks have I ridden through on MUTs in the region.  Eventually, you get the idea the rules don't, shouldn't, and even weren't meant to apply to you.

I used to blame these cyclists for encouraging drivers to hate cyclists, but I've long since realized, they're just an excuse, not the reason for the anti-bike behaviour.

In the Netherlands, when wrong way cycling is a problem, usually because crossing the road is difficult or inconvenient, a bidirectional cycle path is the solution.

I'm not saying that cyclists shouldn't follow the rules, but it is important to understand why they don't.  The same follows for cars too, I hate speeding cars, but I understand the reasons, and would like to see those reasons fixed.
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(07-21-2017, 05:35 PM)clasher Wrote: It's dangerous imo, basically riding oneself into a right hook.

Regarding ebikes it think the govt should have regulated them just like gasoline mopeds or even used the low speed motorcycle regulations they have more in common with small scooters than bicycles.

So first, please differentiate between pedalecs and electric scooters.  Pedalecs are a fantastic option to let people cycle places they wouldn't be able to otherwise.  I got started biking on a pedalec when I was out of shape and wouldn't have been able to bike the way I do now.  And in the Netherlands, they're extremely common among elderly.

Scooters are a different beast, I think the regulations around them are not really that good, but two things, I'd much rather those who have no license be driving those, than cars, and also, the regulations and licensing around limited speed motorcycles (LSMs) are so broken here as to basically guarantee none exist in the province, so I don't think they're a model for us to use either.  I'd rather the regulations be more like what we have now than be like what we have for LSMs.

As for riding up the right, it's perfectly legal with a bike lane, and what is one to do, wait a KM back in a line of traffic?
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(07-21-2017, 06:23 PM)danbrotherston Wrote:
(07-21-2017, 05:35 PM)clasher Wrote: It's dangerous imo, basically riding oneself into a right hook.

Regarding ebikes it think the govt should have regulated them just like gasoline mopeds or even used the low speed motorcycle regulations they have more in common with small scooters than bicycles.

So first, please differentiate between pedalecs and electric scooters.  Pedalecs are a fantastic option to let people cycle places they wouldn't be able to otherwise.  I got started biking on a pedalec when I was out of shape and wouldn't have been able to bike the way I do now.  And in the Netherlands, they're extremely common among elderly.

Scooters are a different beast, I think the regulations around them are not really that good, but two things, I'd much rather those who have no license be driving those, than cars, and also, the regulations and licensing around limited speed motorcycles (LSMs) are so broken here as to basically guarantee none exist in the province, so I don't think they're a model for us to use either.  I'd rather the regulations be more like what we have now than be like what we have for LSMs.

As for riding up the right, it's perfectly legal with a bike lane, and what is one to do, wait a KM back in a line of traffic?

I don't have a big issue with something like an e-assist bicycle, ie [this thing](https://www.trekbikes.com/ca/en_CA/elect...Code=black) but most e-bikes ridden around town are the electric scooter/moped variety, ie a vespa with vestigal pedals. They shouldn't be regulated the same and the moped regs aren't very onerous and require only basic cheap insurance and a valid G1/M1 (or greater) licence.

Where in KW do you ride where traffic stops for a kilometre at a time? There's almost no place in town I've ever had to ride where I'm even sitting in traffic so if you wanna lane split be my guest, I don't because I think it's a risky situation.
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Regs for mopeds are quite onerous. That's why nobody has them here. It's basically the same as a full motorcycle.

Also I'd be careful with "most". I have no data but I know pedalecs are really popular here too.

And again. I'm not talking about splitting. Riding up a bike lane is perfectly legal. And during rush hour traffic backs up in a few places. This is exactly the situation I was hit a few months ago.
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(07-21-2017, 06:19 PM)danbrotherston Wrote:
(07-21-2017, 04:53 PM)ijmorlan Wrote: And then there are the two people on bicycles (I hesitate to use the word “cyclist”) I encountered this afternoon as I was driving along Erb into Uptown from Fischer Hallman. First one, west of University, coming towards me in the bicycle lane. Second one, east of Westmount, coming towards me in my lane (albeit over at the curb). Absolutely unbelievable. I hope those people don’t drive cars, though — that level of stupidity in someone operating a motor vehicle could be severely hazardous to others. And of course many will view people like that as representative of the entire cycling community.

I always have a hard time blaming cyclists for breaking the rules.  I always do my best to follow the rules, but ignoring all the bullying by drivers, I am frequently forced to break the law, how many red lights have I been forced to go through because I cannot activate the detector, and no car is forthcoming.  How many crosswalks have I ridden through on MUTs in the region.  Eventually, you get the idea the rules don't, shouldn't, and even weren't meant to apply to you.

I used to blame these cyclists for encouraging drivers to hate cyclists, but I've long since realized, they're just an excuse, not the reason for the anti-bike behaviour.

In the Netherlands, when wrong way cycling is a problem, usually because crossing the road is difficult or inconvenient, a bidirectional cycle path is the solution.

I'm not saying that cyclists shouldn't follow the rules, but it is important to understand why they don't.  The same follows for cars too, I hate speeding cars, but I understand the reasons, and would like to see those reasons fixed.

I generally take a pretty casual approach to following rules just because they are there. But the rules should act as a starting point from which one can deviate when one is knowledgeable about the situation.

So for example, it is not acceptable for a bicycle rider to blow through a stop sign without looking. But equally, it is absurd to criticize a bicycle rider for only slowing down enough to see clearly that there is nobody around, and the police have no business camping out behind a bush on a quiet street just to catch everybody who doesn’t quite come completely to a stop (actually I happen to believe this last one even for cars — if the car slows enough that it’s clear the driver has had an opportunity to check for other traffic, and would be ready to actually stop if there were any other traffic, that’s good enough to satisfy the purpose of the stop sign).

In this case, it is simply insane for a person on a bicycle to ride the wrong way on Erb St. They can either cross the road, or ride on the sidewalk (which of course is technically against Regional bylaws, as I understand them), as long as they respect any pedestrians on the sidewalk. I don’t even understand what these people are thinking — simple self-preservation should have told them not to do what they did.

I agree with you absolutely about riding through red lights that won’t change (or even just when it’s safe), and even more so on crosswalks (especially crosswalks attached to MUTs — how is that not entrapment?). Also you’re right that many drivers clearly have an anti-bike bigotry that can’t really be blamed on a few bicycle riders.
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I think there are a lot more mopeds in Montreal than in Ontario. Regs might be an issue. Also, driving a car in downtown Montreal is probably worse than in downtown Toronto, and people drive smaller vehicles in Quebec anyway. Somehow I especially noticed the number of mopeds on my most recent trip.

ebikes: Some look like mopeds, while some look more like regular bikes and you wouldn't notice unless you were specifically looking and curious about why that guy is just leaving you behind in the dust with little apparent effort. This is especially the case when you convert a regular bike by adding a motor. Ebike conversions really aren't mopeds; the pedals aren't vestigial.

I'm not super comfortable with remaining behind a line of cars (and in front of more cars that may come). It feels to me like there's more potential for traffic interactions and is inconsistent with the bike box philosophy where you want to get ahead of the cars.
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Are the pedals vestigial on the non-conversion e-bikes that don't look like scooters? I always thought that you still had to pedal with them, they just boosts the power you provide.
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There are a couple of different classes of eBikes on paper, but in practice there are so many different combinations of drivetrains and controllers, it gets a bit fuzzy.

Cort from EBR does a great job of breaking it down, so I'll just provide a link here: https://electricbikereview.com/guides/el...e-classes/

The "Scooter-looking" eBikes have throttles, but I don't know if the motor is activated as well when you pedal. I think that in practice, nobody riding the scooter-ones ever use them - unless the battery is completely dead. In that case though, I'd bet you're far more likely to see them walking the scooter than trying to use the pedals; the geometry looks horrible to try and use them to ride it like a bike. They have big, heavy SLA batteries. London has actually prohibited them on their trails, but pedal-assist bicycles are just fine.

http://www.london.ca/residents/Parks/Exp...oters.aspx

I like the term "eScooter" and "eBike" to differentiate between the two.

I'm a huge fan of eBikes. My second bike is actually a Trek with Shimano's STePS system, and I absolutely love it. I had test ridden one at the the Shimano booth at the Bike show earlier this year in Toronto in passing, not really thinking much of it, but could instantly see the merits right away and knew it would be what could get my husband into cycling. Later in the spring we bought him a Pedego, and now we can ride together every weekend! A few months later, when I decided to finally try and start riding to work (25 km one way), I decided I'd get one, too. I can show up at the office not too sweaty and exhausted, even on a super hot day. While I was just in Europe I was thrilled to see that up in the Lubeck area, virtually every single bike I saw was an eBike, almost exclusively everyone there with Bosch's system.
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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(07-21-2017, 08:24 PM)ijmorlan Wrote: I agree with you absolutely about riding through red lights that won’t change (or even just when it’s safe), and even more so on crosswalks (especially crosswalks attached to MUTs — how is that not entrapment?). Also you’re right that many drivers clearly have an anti-bike bigotry that can’t really be blamed on a few bicycle riders.

If it helps at all for future:  If a light won't change because a vehicle isn't present at a detector, all you have to do is align yourself properly on the inductive loop.

Diamond style:

   

Box style:

   

Sometimes you have to stay on the loop all the way until the flashing hand in the perpendicular direction goes solid, and the light cycle actually begins to change.  Margaret is like this at Queen - if you pop off the loop too soon, it'll just recycle back to "Walk", your light will stay red, and you'll end up waiting forever (assumption is the car that was there turned right on red, so a change in cycle is no longer required).
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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Some intersections just don't work. I've had to contact the Region on more than one occasion. Sometimes they can adjust it to make it work. I know at least two that don't work right now. I try to avoid them.
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