Glimpses From Letters To the Editor : Daily Herald

© Daily Herald : Letter to Editor (Saturday 21 March 2015)

© Daily Herald : Letter to Editor (Saturday 21 March 2015)

Be aware of the Crosswalk Law

Maybe some people need more information about the crosswalk laws in Lake County. Motorists and pedestrians alike need to be more aware of current laws.

Today, as I was driving down Lake Street in Libertyville, I stopped for a man on a bicycle who was looking to cross at the Butler Lake crosswalk. I assumed it was my place to stop and let him pass as he had approached the road; however, oncoming motorists did not. He apparently didn’t think I should have stopped, either, because he got quite angry with me, shouted obscenities at me (my children were in the car) and indicated that I was foolish for stopping to let him pass. Please excuse me for being polite and trying to follow the law.

Can you please educate all of us on proper procedure here? Because next time, I’ll be happy to keep going and the grumpy man can wait a little longer.

Erin Swearingin
Libertyville


TakeAways

Cyclists must yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk.

Cyclists must yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk.

It is difficult enough to get pedestrians, motorists and bicyclists all on the same page in the best of situations. Let’s not make things worse by being rude to one another.

We are all in this together!


Time to emphasize mass transit options

The March 2 article “Rauner’s Transportation Budget: Bikers Up, Transit Down” underscores how shortsighted Gov. Rauner’s proposed budget is in cutting $130 million for mass transit while adding $120 million to the state highway fund.

The proposed cuts will do economic harm to the entire Chicago area. In 2014, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning issued an updated version of GoTo2040, the agency’s comprehensive plan for the region. CMAP emphasized, “Making transit a better ‘first option’ for more residents to get around the region will help keep cars off the road, reduce congestion for drivers, and improve air quality.”

The state and the region should be investing resources to improve suburb-to-suburb mass transit. One attractive option is express buses. Since 2011, Pace has been running express buses on the shoulders of the Stevenson Expressway. The program has been a resounding success, with ridership tripling. But instead of expanding on successes like this, the governor proposes to starve mass transit.

Gov. Rauner’s cuts will also increase air pollution and the amount of carbon dioxide that the Chicago area emits into the atmosphere. Studies have shown that fully 21 percent of carbon emissions come from cars, trucks, buses, and trains, making vehicular traffic the third-largest source of CO2 in the region.

According to the American Public Transportation Association, by using mass transit, a household can reduce its carbon emissions by 4,800 pounds a year — or 10 percent of the carbon sent into the atmosphere by a typical family.

For more than 100 years, the United States has privileged automobiles. It’s time to start privileging mass transit.

Christopher Johnson
Evanston


Bikers alone pay for their safety

As an enthusiastic 71-year-old advocate of motorcycling and overburdened taxpaying resident of Illinois who is concerned about the safety and educational programs provided for motorcyclists in Illinois, I was appalled by the front-page article on March 1, “Transit Down Bikers Up.

The Illinois cycle rider safety training program teaches novice and experienced riders alike how to safely, properly and legally operate a motorcycle. The monies used to pay for these vital programs come from a portion of the fees charged to motorcyclist registrations by the state for the “M” endorsement required on licensing and titling fees, not one cent from taxpayers.

Every penny of this collected money should be spent on the purpose for which it was collected, training and educating motorcyclists — as well as educating the public to “start seeing motorcycles.

Redirecting these funds to other uses such as senior or disabled transit riders is tantamount to highway safety robbery.

Dennis Lange
American Motorcycle Assoc. State Representative Motorcycle Riders Foundation
Rolling Meadows


Require bicycles to have horns

This comment is in response to the article, ‘Bicyclists vs. bucolic suburb’. It is about time that someone addressed this issue.

One aspect of this issue that isn’t mentioned in this article is sorely lacking: the lack of horns on any bicycles to announce their arrival.

Modern bicycles are deadly silent. They can be only a few feet behind you as you walk along a road, and yet you can’t hear them coming.

I even went to a bike shop and told them about the problem. The owner just dismissed the issue by saying no one would purchase a horn or bell, so they don’t even sell them.

Many times either I or my dog have almost been hit by these “silent killers.” Perhaps if Lake County passed a law requiring horns on all the bikes, the riders and bike shop owners will wake up.

Let’s do something about this.
Larry Boisen
Lake Zurich


TakeAways

Larry has a good point here. Announcing your presence on most MUPs is considered ‘good etiquette‘. Signs to this effect are posted along the Naperville River Walk Trail to remind bicyclists to alert pedestrians of their impending approach.

I prefer bells because they can be heard a good ways off and seem less aggressive. But a voice notification is also possible.