Milwaukee-Ogden intersection problem

This intersection is the most bike crash prone along Milwaukee Avenue.

Problem

When riding a bicycle southbound on Milwaukee Avenue, the bicyclist may encounter one or more drivers turning their automobiles left into southbound Ogden across the bicyclist's intended path at the intersection of Ogden and Milwaukee without yielding to the bicyclist.

Why does this problem occur?

This problem occurs because:

  1. The drivers are not yielding to oncoming traffic (the bicyclist).
  2. The intersection signal and Illinois left-turn laws create this situation of opposing traffic.

Let's run through the problem

  1. A bicyclist travels southbound on Milwaukee Avenue and approaches Ogden Avenue.
  2. The signal for northbound Milwaukee Avenue travelers turns red (there are no left turn lights, in any direction, at this intersection).
  3. The signal for southbound Milwaukee Avenue travelers remains green.
  4. Queuing drivers waiting to turn left (from the left turn lane) from northbound Milwaukee Avenue into southbound Ogden Avenue take note of their signal turning red and must vacate the intersection by completing their left turn into southbound Ogden Avenue.
  5. Drivers turn their cars left across the oncoming bicyclist's path.
  6. The bicyclist brakes or maneuvers to avoid colliding with the cars.*

A possible point of view of the bicyclist

The turn action in step 5 and braking action in step 6 could not have been anticipated by the bicyclist because they didn't know that the signal for the driver(s) had turned red meaning that the driver(s) had to vacate the intersection.

A possible point of view of the driver

  • The driver(s) in step 5 may not have seen the oncoming bicyclist. (This is not an excuse.)
  • The driver(s) in step 5 may believe that the southbound traffic has also been given a red light and that the bicyclist is illegally passing through the intersection.

Solution

Install a left turn signal for northbound Milwaukee Avenue at Ogden Avenue. (Seems really easy, right?)

Links

Comments

 
/home/stevevance/wiki.stevevance.net/data/pages/bicycling/milwaukee_ogden_intersection.txt · Last modified: 2011/07/04 13:37 by stevevance
 
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