Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Siskiyou Velo

Southern Oregon's Premier Cycling Club

One Deputy at a Time

by Gary Shaff on Dec, 16 2015

Wonderful day for a cycle ride. I joined John Bullock, aka Velominati, for the Club’s Wednesday ride. Yes, it was cold but above freezing (below which, I don’t ride two wheelers). A couple of layers (three) on top, two on the bottom, double socks and toe covers made for a cool experience. The countryside at this time of year is spectacular; the orchards, forested hills, and snow!

Now to the real story. Cycling home just past Talent Avenue on OR99 an auto driver violated ORS 811.065, Unsafe Passing of Person Operating a Bike. As it happens, a Jackson County Sheriff Deputy was parked on the shoulder and might have seen the violation. I pointed and motioned but it didn’t seem like he took notice, so I rode on; for a hundred feet or so before deciding to go back and check-in with the Deputy. As it turns out, he was eating his lunch and hadn’t seen the passing maneuver. I shared with him the requirements of ORS 811.065 which he was unfamiliar and he told me he sometimes rides a bike but not as often as he’d like. After such a pleasant exchange, I rode on toward Ashland satisfied that I’d done the right thing by stopping.

As I approached Valley View Road intersection another auto driver passed in violation of the law. It is not news, you know, it happens all the time. Surprisingly, the Deputy too passed and we all pulled to a stop at the light. When it turned green, the Deputy put on his red and blue lights and pulled over the perpetrator. I don’t know whether it was a coincidence and the driver had violated another DMV law, or if a ticket or a warning was issued for unsafe passing of a bicycle. As before, I rode on happy that I had taken the time to speak with the Deputy about “sharing the road.”

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