Pedestrians, cyclists can help avoid tragedies by making themselves seen

Q: Please remind all pedestrians and bicyclists to wear white at night! We can’t see you!

My cousin’s 16-year-old grandniece was hit by a car in Oregon wearing only black at night. She barely survived, and is now in a vegetative state. So sad! It’s no fault of the driver, who was found not to be liable. It’s costing the family millions for hospitalizations and home care.

Marcia Citta, Saratoga

A: I’m so sorry. Thank you for sharing a powerful story that could save others from tragedy.

Q: In your tips for trick-or-treaters column, you missed the most important one: please wear reflective vests or bands. They’re dirt-cheap and make pedestrians visible at night.

There is no better way to keep pedestrians, big and small, safe.

Malcolm Hoar

A: Important advice for pedestrians and bicyclists, too, at night.

Q: Your column title Sunday about “legal moves on the road” and your “yes” response to the reader who described a car using a bike lane to pass a bicyclist on the right and then return to the traffic lane seemed to indicate that such a move by the driver was legal, but it is not.

One may drive a car in a bike lane only to park, enter or leave a roadway, or prepare for a turn within 200 feet of an intersection (CVC Section 21209). The move described in the column was none of those.

Tim Zadel, San Jose

A: I didn’t mean to give the impression that the driver’s move was legal, so that does need correcting. Others also noted this.

Q: I read your column when I can — great job! In Sunday’s column, however, I read the first entry with dismay.

The cyclist was violating CVC 21208, which compels a cyclist to ride in a bicycle lane where one exists when traveling at a speed slower than the prevailing flow of traffic. So a cyclist “unnecessarily riding in the traffic lane and going slow” is in violation of CVC 21208.

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