Thursday, July 2

What's the Rule Here?

Seen on the Keller Multi-Use Path (MUP). It seems to me that the sign is probably referring to Texas 552.003. My interpretation of that sign's meaning to the motorist is:

"You better stop for someone walking across the street here, unless they dart out. Ditto if they're walking a bike across. On the other hand, you probably only have to stop for a riding cyclist if he's to your right and even that's not definite. Almost for sure, if the cyclist on the MUP is riding fast, you are in the clear if you don't see him and he winds up on your windshield."

To a lawful cyclist on the MUP, I think this is a normal, unsigned intersection in which the right of way rules should apply,but then again, maybe not. To a lawful cyclist on the road, anything on that MUP probably ought to be treated as a pedestrian. Clear as mud?

The question is: "Regardless of whether it makes sense from a traffic standpoint, is my interpretation correct?" For reference, I include 552.003 below. In this case, I think a bicycle being ridden on the MUP fits under vehicle rules, though the sign implies the path is a sidewalk. I couldn't find any statutes governing bicycles being ridden on sidewalks & through crosswalks, just pedestrians. My current personal rule here is that if I'm on the road, I treat anything on that MUP as a pedestrian/crosswalk. If I'm on the MUP, I stop for any traffic on the road, regardless of direction because that is the was most MUPs are signed to work. If necessary, I'll outwait any motorist on the road, who may not understand that my arm turn signal means that I want to turn onto the road in the same direction he's now waiting to go. Which also means that he'll be wanting to pass me in about 2 seconds if he doesn't go first. That path don't go to Alliance Airport...

Sec. 552.003. PEDESTRIAN RIGHT-OF-WAY AT CROSSWALK. (a) The operator of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing a roadway in a crosswalk if:

(1) no traffic control signal is in place or in operation; and
(2) the pedestrian is:
(A) on the half of the roadway in which the vehicle is traveling; or
(B) approaching so closely from the opposite half of the roadway as to be in danger.
(b) Notwithstanding Subsection (a), a pedestrian may not suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and proceed into a crosswalk in the path of a vehicle so close that it is impossible for the vehicle operator to yield.


ChipSeal said...

Cool, now I have another good reason not to ride on a MUP.

Steve A said...

What worries me most is riding on the road where it crosses the MUP. I avoid this road on the way home specifically because I don't like the feeling of being a duck in a shooting gallery. Besides, MUPs are pretty safe if you get off your bike and stand in one spot off in the grass. They also tend to be cooler (literally), which is not a bad thing in the Texas summer.

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