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Cyclist-motorist conflict

While motorists are supposed to give cyclists three feet of clearance when passing, that doesn't always happen. Such a situation led to conflict on Bliss Road.

A turf battle between a bicyclist and a pickup driver took a heavy toll on both: The cyclist’s $2,000 fat tire bike and a $500 child’s bicycle attachment were flattened, and the driver faces charges of endangering safety and criminal damage to property.

The confrontation occurred at about 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, when Daniel Lexvold, 35, of La Crosse was driving his pickup on Bliss Road and allegedly disobeyed a state law requiring vehicles to give cyclists three feet of space when passing, according to the criminal complaint.

Bicyclist Joshua Miner, 40, also of La Crosse, took issue with Lexvold’s passing too closely to him and his sons as they rode bicycles along Bliss, according to the report. One of the boys was on the bicycle attachment behind Miner, and the other was riding his own bike.

Miner approached Lexvold’s older model Dodge pickup at Main Street and Losey Boulevard, where the truck was stopped for a red light.

That’s where the police report reflects a he-said, he-said encounter, with this account from Miner:

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  • Miner contends that Lexvold rolled down his window, listened to a brief lesson on the 3-foot law, made an obscene gesture toward Miner and rolled the window up.
  • Miner tried to go around the front of the pickup, but Lexvold edged his vehicle forward, hitting him.
  • Miner took his son off of the child’s bike in the back and put him on the sidewalk and returned to pick up the bicycle, when Lexvold moved his pickup forward and stopped several times.
  • Miner decided to leave his $2,000 Surly fat-tire bike and the $500 child attachment in the street, and Lexvold promptly ran over them and drove off. Miner managed to get the license plate number.
  • A witness confirmed Miner’s narration.

Lexvold’s version, after police tracked him down:

  • A bicyclist approached his window, but Lexvold could not hear what the man said because his truck radio was too loud.
  • He did not want to roll down his window because he wanted to avoid a confrontation, although he acknowledged making an obscene gesture.
  • He told police he did not see the two boys.
  • As he tried to drive around the bicyclist and the bikes, the cyclist threw the bike under his pickup’s tires.

Police arrested Lexvold, who was charged Wednesday in La Crosse County Circuit Court with one count of recklessly endangering safety and one count of criminal damage to property.

No one was injured in the confrontation, and the pickup was not damaged, according to the report.

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(160) comments

AirForce Retired

All bicycles should be liscensed didplay a plate and have full operating lights system and insuramce that is included is the liscensing fee. No exceptions.

scrapiron

So your solution to motorists killing and injuring cyclists is government intervention that forces every cyclist to invest this kind of money? My family owns 10 bikes. How much do you suppose this is all going to cost me?

Couldn't we just start by enforcing the existing laws that cover both motorists and cyclists?

spaceis411

continued...

The operator of a vehicle MAY DRIVE ON THE LEFT SIDE of the center of a roadway on any portion thereof which has been designated a no-passing zone, as described in par. (a), to overtake and pass, with care, any vehicle, except an implement of husbandry or agricultural commercial motor vehicle, traveling at a speed less than half of the applicable speed limit at the place of passing.

first, not one of the clueless majority appears to have looked at the actual rules (i include them here for you)

second, READ the story - he did not cut the driver off, he was leaving. (why are the facts so hard for y'all?) the driver threatened him with the truck.

third, if you think bikes don't belong on the road, it just makes you look really dumb (la crosse dumb).

i left la crosse several years ago and currently live in germany where (no, really) bikes and car coexist with no issues. i know, hard to believe.

reading the comment section just makes me sad for my old city.

spaceis411

wow-- there's dumb and then there's la crosse dumb.

so many words, so little sense. let's begin.

From the Wisconsin DOT—

Bicycles are considered "vehicles" on Wisconsin roadways. That means bicyclists must obey the rules of the road like any other vehicle and must be treated as equal users by all other vehicles.

Narrow lanes
• Ride in the center of the lane.
• Keep at least three feet between yourself and passing or parked traffic.

Lane positioning can be especially important in approaching a downhill intersection. Moving to the center makes you more visible to intersecting and left turning motorists in opposing lanes.
• Going downhill, your speed is likely to be closer to traffic speeds or posted speed limits. Hugging the curb when there are visual barriers increases your chance to be struck by a bigger vehicle, or of hitting a pedestrian or sidewalk riding bicyclist.
• Take the lane, be seen and see other traffic better if you are close to traffic speeds

keep reading...

Yojimbo

Just remember folks not all bicyclists are created equal. You are not likely to notice those riding smart. Smart bikers choose less traveled routes, ride defensively, do not operate cell phones or have both ear buds in. They flow with traffic and yield when appropriate. But yes, there are other biker archetypes for sure. Like those packs of techno-weenies in spandex hogging the road? Well, they bother other cyclists too, well, me anyway. They make a very poor impression. As do the people who ride bikes on sidewalks and then blast right across the crosswalk without looking and while talking on a cell phone. And yes, there are the DWI bikers. You often (don't) see them riding at night, no lights and dressed all in black. Brilliant! As a car driver as well, i can tell you the level of distracted driving and road rage is definitely on the rise. And if you don't see a bike or start raging on one, it's the car driver who will likely be going to prison.

scrapiron

"...not all bicyclists are created equal."

This is a good point. As a cyclist, I get passed by hundreds of cars each day, probably thousands in a week. I tend to remember only the 5 to 10 of them that do something stupid and put my life at risk. Maybe motorists commenting here could avoid putting safe, legal cyclists like me and the majority of my cycling brothers and sisters in the same group with the minority of jerks that cut you off and run lights, etc.

It would also help if you were a bit understanding about the cyclist's priority on staying safe over being convenient to you. If I'm going over a narrow bridge, for example, where the shoulder is almost always littered with tire puncturing debris, I am going to swing out into the middle of your lane (where it's legal to ride, in that circumstance) and force you to slow to my speed. Relax. The time you lost going 20 mph instead of the posted speed limit you will make up in seconds in your car.

tommccarty

I had an incident when I was out riding one Saturday. Truck driver came too close and forced me off the road. I yelled an obsenity and give him the finger. He came back and confronted me and became abusive and got in my face. I grabbed my bear spray and sprayed him in the eyes, then hit him with my tire pump a few times. I rode off, never saw him again. But if I did I would hit him a few more times, he was a big dude and I wanted to be sure it hurt.

scrapiron

You're not helping. What did anyone gain by your attitude or your actions?

Sarah23

Hey cyclist, you can be right and dead at the same time!

tower

So in this day & age he wipes out his personal cannon & blows your head off. You look really funny with no head. Stupid, really stupid.

common-cents

I ride about 30 miles per day. I mostly get honked at by big fat people who are jealous that I'm
taking care of my health. I had one guy lay on his horn for a block and I wasn't in his way.
Sad for him I caught him at the next light and he starting yelling at me, so I went over two his
car and punched that fat boy in the face. He looks funny with no front tooth.

monroe54656

Who developed the first improved roads in the US? Cyclist
Who flew the first airplanes? Cyclist
Who built the first automobiles in the US? Cyclist
Why do cyclist get the short end of the stick now? Automobiles.

HonestAbe

What do license plates pay for?
What do bikes still have a right to, and yet, not have to pay for?
Why do bicyclists feel they have the short end of the stick, when there are just as many ways to bike, plus you get to use the bike trails.
What's arrogant and dimwitted are the spandex warriors that take it so personal they aren't heralded as great crusaders .... you ride a bike, get over it. Most the bicyclists around here do so due to the fact they got their license taken away for drunk driving .... not a group I care to associate with. Why can't you drive a car? Why are bicyclists so upset at automobiles? It's funny, especially when they get in the way, or throw themselves in the way like this rodeo clown did.

We want lanes, we want signs, we want we want we want .... to pay nothing either.

Hmmm

It would be my guess cyclists also drive cars and pick-up trucks and pay the same amount of taxes as the rest of us.

Hmmm

Most cyclists going down Bliss will be going the speed limit or faster and cars / trucks should just relax and follow behind. The difference in time getting to the bottom - likely less than a minute. This guy and his sons probably were not going that fast and could have pulled over to let the trucker pass. The pick-up driver can't legally pass - double yellow from the bottom to the top of Bliss. Eye contact and a friendly smile from both parties and this would not have been in the paper.

monroe54656

Once an individual closes the door on his/her auto, they get this feeling of entitlement. "this is my car and I can drive it the way I want and where ever I want. Get out of my way." How wrong they are. The state protects everyone who uses the road, automobile drivers, farmers, motorcycle riders, pedestrians, and yes, cyclists too. I frequently observe these types of automobile drivers while in my own car, and while I am on my bicycle. Someday they will pay the price. They will take the life of someone who shares the road with them or their own life. Either way, their life as they know it will be over.

scrapiron

Honest Abe: Your recurring "physics" theme in these comments seems to be justifying some kind of might-makes-right law of the jungle with regard to bike/car interactions. As if, regardless of what the law states, you get to do whatever you want because you can easily kill me on my bike if you are in your truck.

You seem confident in your science knowledge. Here's some social studies for you: In the US, we abide by the laws the people have established, even if they are inconvenient to us at times. If we strongly object to the laws the people have established, we use peaceful means to encourage changes to those laws.

Here's a suggestion. There are plenty of countries in Africa and the Middle East where your preferred system of government exists. If you want to live that way, please renounce your US citizenship and move to one of these places.

HonestAbe

Yay, someone finally acknowledged it, way to go.

Honest & confident, yep.

lookout

The fact is they're both responsible for what happened.

team Human

It is sad that so many of you in the comments cant agree that we are all on the same team just trying to get home to our families at night.

If you are in a car, please be patient and pass when safe (this is legal to do even in a no passing zone , same as passing farm machinery). If you are on a bike, stay as far right as is safe.

Too many commenters clearly don't know the law regarding bicycles and it is sad how people would rather place blame all over the place instead of educating themselves and being nice to the other humans in our community.

Deadwood subscriber

"A witness confirmed Miner’s narration."

teamamerica

I love to use my bicycle as much as I can, that said, a lot of other cyclists that travel in packs and ride side by side oblivious to any other vehicles are jerks. Come on, share the road and show some courtesy and caution.

GBdad

In 10 miles of driving today, I saw no fewer than 5 cars blowing red lights, probably 80% of cars traveling faster than the speed limit and seemingly everyone behind the wheel embroiled in some kind of phone conversation or smartphone fidgeting. The reality is, very, very few of us are "do" transportation perfectly - bikes, cars, boats,etc...but being irritating or even a scofflaw on a bike has dramatically different consequences when compared to poor behavior by drivers.

Mohisican

My son rides a bike in Madison and I worry about him all the time, but if you want to see how discourteous bike riders can be. Drive in long coulee when they have their frequent bike rides. Most of that road is no passing and they expect you to go five miles an hour for miles on end while they ride side by side and chat. A slight tap on horn to give them a heads up when you are 200 ft away usually results in finger salute or a disgusted look.

HonestAbe

If it's a regular happening, call the police for an escort prior to leaving.
If you're behind them and they're blocking traffic, call the non-emergency number for assistance. They're breaking the law by riding abreast while traffic is present, they hate those of us that use gasoline. Take a video as the squad car approaches with lights on, and cites every bicyclist for blocking motor vehicle traffic on a roadway, demand that each get cited if they officer is unwilling to do the paperwork.
Don't take the bird, take a stand.

tower

I have to laugh for the people who claim a bike holds up traffic on Bliss Rd. I remember passing bread trucks on the way down! OK I was 12 at the time. It was a rush at the time.

patssy70

I think you all should look up the State Statutes on bicycle riding on a roadway - almost every section states that the rider shall 'exercise due care'.. Where was the due care with this rider?

HonestAbe

right on patssy. the spandex warriors don't understand the big picture, they have their 7 page little rule book in their pocket and think that gives them more rights than they actually have. The big picture is physics ... and the DOT can't write "don't be stupid on your bike, motor vehicles are heavier and you should always get out of the way or you're not bright" ... it's going to have to be re-written to be more clear I guess.

That's the grey area I mention .... "exercise due care" ... that is something this bicyclist did not do, nor did the officer cite him for. Both parties should have been cited, as I see an unfair balance when a cyclist can accost a motor vehicle driver, and that driver gets the ticket. insanity by the bicyclist and the PD

patssy70

Things sure have changed in La Crosse. My son, on his motorcycle travelling north on the Causeway was run over by a city bus - he wasn't hurt and the bus driver not cited. There were pics in the tribune of the motorcycle UNDER the bus.

Bicycles and pedestrians - there has been such advertising about how they have the right of way that they have stopped using common sense and their attitude of entitlement has become extremely stupid. I was pulling into a parking space in a parking lot when some female walkling to her car walked immediately in front of me. I honked the horn and told her 'if I were to hit you, you are the one hurts'. Some people are just stupid, no matter what the laws say.

badboy

I know the biker. He is an arrogant pompous know it all with a huge sense of entitlement. But that is just my opinion....

HonestAbe

It's obvious he is. Struggling to make such a dent in the bicycling world he's willing to put his kids in danger, as well as his $2k bicycle. Seems he needs a new relaxing hobby, or a cause that actually needs fighting. He has the money to .... "throw around". haha

janetpaper

I have to cross a busy street to get to work in the morning. I use marked crosswalks. If I step off the curb and into the crosswalk I have the right of way. But I don't insist on it because I'd like to live a little longer. Same principle applies when I'm on my bike on the streets here in La Crosse - and especially when I have my grandkids riding in the attached seat!! And by the way, we DID used to have to license our bikes in the good old days.

RJRKim

So if you BLINDLY Dart int the street you have the right away???? Is that what you are saying?

scrapiron

I think what he's saying is "If you're not in a car like me, you are a second-class citizen." Because gas taxes, blah, blah, blah.

scrapiron

I think what he's saying is "Run people over so I can get to McDonald's 30 seconds sooner."

HonestAbe

mad....girls? buhahahahaha

HonestAbe

You have to stay on the sidewalk until traffic clears. (watch 7th by Western Tech sometime, omg)

What upsets me more are people that give more consideration to the pedestrian waiting patiently on the sidewalk than they do, the 20 cars behind them, and stop to let the pedestrian cross, stopping every vehicle behind them, and upsetting them. Go do your good deed somewhere else. On the flip-side, if I'm a pedestrian, and a car stops to let me cross, I stay standing there until they get disgusted and drive off. Don't do me any favors, and keep the flow of traffic going!!!!!

Propaganda

I recommend following the laws of physics instead of the laws of man. Ask any paramedic how many bike vs. car accidents they respond to per year, and who gets the ambulance ride afterwards.

As a side note, my favorite past-time is driving in my over-sized diesel truck blowing smoke at these clowns. Just the other day I was driving down Sand Lake Road, right next to the brand new bike lane, and two clowns were in the road! Can one of you spandex clowns explain why you would be on the road instead of the bike lane less than 50 yards away?

jason janske

Wow...I really hope you are kidding. If not...good luck in life.

sickntired

Exactly - bikers are constantly riding outside the bike lane or so close that a car has to go outside their lane to make sure they don't hit the bicyclist. I think the bike lanes are mostly a waste of money & space.

HonestAbe

I love it. Add a little oil to the diesel, and ride your brakes as you choke 'em out.

They want to do battle, that's obvious. Let's push 'em back to the bike trails, there is no need for someone to bicycle from Onalaska to Holmen unless it's a joy ride, hit the bike trail and enjoy the ride. sigh

GBdad

So you have a completely unnecessary $50,000 truck that probably get 5 miles to the gallon and the biker is the clown? Can't see the math on that one bud.

flowergirl

I come from a time where you used a bike to get somewhere because you couldn't drive. I did not drive a car until I was 21. Wearing a helmet and going out for a leisure ride has never been in my planned schedule. I have been hit 3 times on a bike in my younger years. No cops or lawyers were called, no tickets issued. 20 years ago it was always the bikers fault. But I think we have evolved since then, and now biking is a leisure family past time full of rules and regulations.
One question I would like to ask LAX as I live on Losey blvd and can hardly mow my boulevard without getting hit by a car to close to the curb. Would you take yourself and 2 children down a lane on Losey Boulevard from La Crosse Street down to State Road?
LAX I don't want you to quote what the laws say you can do, I want you to tell me from your mind and heart if you would do it, I really want your honest opinion.

HonestAbe

great question, and ... great answer by the subject grin

Southsider

Wisconsin Statute section 346.80 (2) state that a bicyclist is required to ride as close as practical to the right edge or curb.. Cyclists riding down the middle of the road are violating the law in most cases. Both drivers and cyclists have to use their head and try to accommodate each other.

RJRKim

Show that to LAX !!!

HonestAbe

That's not any sort of law any cyclist in LaCrosse adheres to. You bend to us or else, we are the meek and we're going to encroach on your pavement, even if it hurts us. lol

They think if they shout the laws that serve them loud enough, we'll all think that those are the only laws, when in fact, it's time for THEM to be schooled.

union conservative

I am not defending the truck driver but why on earth would you ride with your two little kids down Bliss Road? There is not a wide enough shoulder for passing traffic to go by a bike without going into the oncoming lane of traffic. Then to confront someone about it when you have your two little children with you even seems more stupid. In this day and age your better off keeping your mouth shut and moving on vs arguing over something that in the end no one will win. Cooler heads always prevail my friends. Had the bike rider kept his head he would not have put his children in a dangerous situation, would not have take off work to testify in court (this will go to trial if the truck driver is smart), and the bike rider would still have his $2000 bike.

let it go

LAX, you keep saying read the law. What is the law when it comes to crossing double solid lines in order to pass? Do you think a law officer would not ticket someone crossing the solid yellow lines to pass a person on a bike? Have you ever been hit by someone on a bike who has no regards for other bikers or pedestrians? It doesn't feel good. The time for a family bike ride in city or county is not at 5:30pm.

LAX

You don't cross a double yellow line for any reason! What is it you don't understand about that? This sin't about cyclists and pedestrians -- it's about a guy in a 4000 lb or more truck endangering a guy and two kids on bicycles. Try to focus...

CJ

Had the biker had a little composure, not defending truck driver, he would have a bike intact and not been a bad example in front of his kids...........

Grandma D

I think the person who endangered someone was the bicyclist who put his bike with his child attached in front of a truck so he could confront the driver of the truck. Talk about stupid!!!

Melowese Richardson

LAX: You just don't get it. There's being right, and there's being wrong. There's also being dead right. Which is what's probably going to happen to you someday.

RJRKim

LAX...if you have ever seen National Lampoon's Animal House, Look at my thumb, Gee you're dumb !!

Gran2

I have driven on a state highway where there is a bicycle lane, however the bikers don't stay in that lane, it can get very frustrating for drivers to deal with inconsiderate bikers. And visa versa I am sure.

ElPresidente

Sometimes as a cyclist you need to move over to avoid broken glass, nails, chunks of metal, gravel, rutted roads... you shouldn't be surprised to find out how crappy some of our highways are. That explains why some of us aren't as far to the right as you wish sometimes.

scrapiron

That's not a "bicycle lane". It's a breakdown lane. It's the place where all the broken glass, sand, busted pavement and loose gravel end up. It's also the part of the road that is never repaired, so it's filled with potholes and cracks. I'm sorry if you think I should have to fix a flat tire every 10 miles so you don't have to move over 3 feet for 1.5 seconds.

Justanopinion

And I meant on a bike. Silly lacrosse

Justanopinion

Kind of funny to read these comments when this is a city that says it's ok to drink beer and bar hop.

Blisswhacked

I am all for respecting the rights of bicyclists but there are just some roads where it is not safe to bicycle. Bliss road may be OK for an experienced cyclist on a well maintained bike but trailing a child down that hill seems to me very unwise. Just because a person has the right to do something, that does not mean that it is wise or safe. Most cyclists are are courteous and respectful of other traffic and pedestrians but a minority are arrogant and very condescending as well as completely dismissive of traffic laws and common courtesy. Yes, many motor vehicle drivers fall into that category as well but neither should be exempt from the law no matter how inconvenient it is to follow.

HonestAbe

As a kid, I was taught to look out for traffic as a pedestrian or while cycling.

What is with these people today that keep vying for position on the roadway they pay not one cent for?
The photo on this article clearly shows a cyclist impeding traffic?
When did traffic flow fall by the wayside to allow the meek to use the paved roads our license plates pay for?!?

There will be more happenings like this, more and more, as the spandex warriors try to encroach within the city limits, forgetting there are 100s of miles of trails around here just for bicycles. Spandex warriors are just horrible at physics, yet know how to stroke the powers that be somehow.

I hope the cyclist in this articles' photo gets a ticket for impeding traffic, they should be either doing the speed limit, or on the shoulder ... this is a photo of them in the lane of traffic!!! Time to do something to wake these cyclists up to prevent more accidents.

LAX

Read the law...cyclists have every right to a lane of traffic as a motor vehicle! Bicycles are here to stay and you better get familiar with the LAWS! And BTW I pay A LOT for the use of roadways through my taxes and gasoline taxes when I'm not on a bike! I wonder how many bicyclists will be killed or maimed today because of ignorant, stupid motorists texting and yakking on a cellphone while driving! It's high time -- past time --- that the authorities start arresting motorists who threaten and assault bicyclists.

HonestAbe

grow some common sense.
having the right does not give you the default right-of-way at all times, which is the sense I get from todays warriors.

If you want special treatment, take it up with the DOT, pay your dues and have it your way. You're all trying to have it your way and not pay a dime, sorta like frisbee golf engulfing our beloved Pettibone PARK, given to THE PEOPLE by Mr.Pettibone.

tcieslewicz

Disagree.

LAX

The LAW says a bicycle has the right to the road, PERIOD! And I do pay taxes, gas taxes, vehicle fees...probably more than you!

Blisswhacked

How many Bicyclists will be killed while doing something stupid...something that may be their right to do, but dead they be none the less. How often does a bicyclist act like a pedestrian when convenient and like a vehicle when convenient. How many stop signs do you stop at...I know it is inconvenient but it is the LAW. "It's high time -- past time --- that the authorities start arresting motorists who threaten and assault bicyclists." and I will add ...arresting bicyclists who fail to obey the law. We ALL have a responsibility

Thinkingoutloud

Bicycles have the right to a lane provided they do not impede the flow of traffic, otherwise they are to ride as far to the right as practical. Look it up.

scrapiron

The cyclist in that photo is entirely within his rights. The motorist, however, is clearly breaking the law. However, unless there's an oncoming car we can't see in the photo, this is a perfectly safe interaction that happens all the time without incident. At 55 mph, a car can cover the distance a bike will go at 17 mph, plus about 12 bike lengths in under 1.5 seconds.

Thinkingoutloud

Well the cyclist MIGHT be in the right, if there is something on the roadway that is preventing him from riding as far to the right as practical (I did not say possible). As I see it he could be over almost another 2 feet and still have plenty of space,especially with a vehicle coming from behind wanting to pass. Remember we all should be considerate and law abiding.

Letitsnow

In the end don't bring a bike to a truck fight.

HonestAbe

applause +1

lol

awol2009

LOL

Faust

both parties escalated this. the truck driver's in trouble most likely because he lied to po po. the biker dad sounds like a _ick and should be held accountable for his part in the escalation.

drivers have to respect bikers rights on the road, bikers have to try to make that a little easier for drivers to accommodate by following the rules and traffic signs. i drive and i bike. common sense tells me that as a biker, it's my responsibility to make sure i am safe, i can't count on other drivers to be looking for me all the time. that starts with choosing 'smart' roads to travel on at the 'smart' times. rush hour on bliss road on a bike? not smart.

HonestAbe

no, the biker escalated this. he took issue because his imaginary ruler said the truck was within 3' ... well guess what jack wad .... there's no shoulder! lol

this cyclist was taking the kids with ... so when something happened (and it would), he can site how innocent he was ... just out with the kids. Well, he's out with the kids, riding on a road, in a road (no shoulder), then doesn't give any leeway to the vehicles?
He was looking for a fight, instigated it, and played victim as though he'd been taught, and probably was.

Tim Russell

Still doesn't give the idiot in the truck a right to run over the bike.

Mr Peroni

I've got my five year old trained to say "share the road" when we pass bikers on Bliss. I find it cute. He really doesn't like road hog bikers.

awol2009

Wow, charge both off them. Bicycling on Bliss Rd? Must be a suicide mission. With kids? Guy should have his head examined. I know people bike Bliss often, pretty dangerous to do. It's dangerous enough to drive,letalone deal with bicyclists. Guess he has every right to bike it, but don't expect drivers to slow down and stay at a snail's pace the duration of the ride. Geese, ride the designated trails/paths. I ride them a few times a week. Good thing he wasn't in the path of the truck that lost control on Bliss Rd and wiped-out part of the tavern a couple days ago. .

LAX

Yes, motorist MUST slow down if they come up behind a bicyclist on Bliss Road and cannot pass safely allowing three feet minimum clearance. That's the LAW!

HonestAbe

Bicyle must keep traffic flow, do not impede traffic, if you cannot maintain said flow, established by speed limits set in place, then ride on the shoulder. The biker can't ride on the shoulder on Bliss!

So this truck didn't swerve out far enough, well, the bicyclist isn't using common sense, impeding traffic on a road with no shoulder. The vehicle owner was set up, and if he would push the issue, I'd defend him pro se!!

LAX

If the driver had to swerve or pass illegally, then he's going too fast --the cyclist had right of way...and by the way, there are bike lanes on Bliss...but most motorists wouldn't realize it if it bit 'em in the @ss... go ahead defend...or try to defend him...better read the law first. I hope he get jail time!

HonestAbe

the cyclist that accosted the motorist should be the one seeking mental health attention, as well be explaining his actions to a judge. by both accounts, the cyclist approached and confronted the motorist, not smart.
If he was stable and actually took issue, he would have shown his kids what level headed people do, take a plate # and call police and fill in a complaint.
Stay out of the lane of traffic, show some tolerance and everyone could get along. Just because the vehicle 'seemed' closer than 3' ... how can you PROVE IT?
I've been brushed by vehicles before, didn't lose my cool, I moved over more, for my own safety ... I didn't try to take on a fight with a 2000lb piece of metal.

anyway....

Blisswhacked

No there are NO bike lanes on Bliss. There are sharrows..the key root of that, albeit made up, word is "share". A bike lane is a lane specifically for bikes.

Dalai Mama

I wasn't there and so am passing no judgement on either of the adults involved, although I'll admit they both sound as if they were in the wrong. But I agree that we have a bicycle problem in La Crosse. I think it's wonderful that people cycle, but many of our city streets, despite being marked with a bicycle symbol, are simply too narrow for 2 lanes of automobile traffic and bicycles, especially when the cyclists refuse to stay to the right and instead mosey down the middle of the auto traffic lane. Last night as I was heading down Main Street toward West Avenue a man and his two young sons were bicycling right in the traffic lane. I had two options - I could basically crawl behind them or I could pull into the oncoming traffic lane. Something is wrong with this picture. This has happened to me numerous times in various places in La Crosse. I frequently see people towing their young children in pull-behind carts who dash across busy streets against the traffic light too.

LAX

You are ignorant of the LAW, too!

union conservative

There is being ignorant of the law and then there is being honest with the way bicyclist use the law to their advantage. It is just like using a crosswalk. Just cause you are using a crosswalk doesn't mean you can walk out in front of traffic and expect it to stop for you. Common sense plays a part in everything.

RJRKim

LAX you are BEYOND Innorant( I typed it that way for a reason) YOU ARE IGNORANT !! Did you pass the 3rd grade or did they just pass you out because you were 17 yrs old ??

Swishersweet

Don't take your young children on one of the most dangerous and skinniest roads in la crosse then jackass

elocs

I am retired and have no car so I use a bike to get around the city, but I drove a car for over 40 years so I know what it's like from a driver's point of view. Yes, there are some bicyclists who give us all a bad name either by not obeying the rules or riding with an antagonistic attitude of demanding their rights on the road even if by doing so a close encounter with a motor vehicle hurts or kills them. But there are also too many motorists who have contempt for those on bikes who are riding exactly as they should--obeying traffic rules, keeping far to the right.

When bicycles and motor vehicles mix in traffic, bad things will happen, which is why I ride on the sidewalks as much as possible (yes, that's legal except for downtown La Crosse) especially on the long north-south stretches of road and I rarely encounter pedestrians. Going west-east there are a lot of side streets that are safe. But don't judge all bicyclists by the attitudes and actions of a few.

Grandma D

I travel Bliss Rd daily and see many pedestrians and bicyclists. Last night, I saw this bicyclist speaking to the police. I have seen him several times riding on Bliss Road. He always rides fully in the lane of traffic and forces vehicles to swing into the oncoming lane (over the double solid yellow lines) to get by him. He is not courteous and as for gestures, if you honk your horn to warn that you are trying to get around, he uses that same gesture. This is not the way to teach your children to obey traffic safety laws or how to treat fellow travelers! Bliss Road can be a beautiful ride/drive for everyone if we use courtesy. Drivers need to slow down and bicyclists should move over and allow vehicles to go around safely. I have met up w/a whole group of bicyclists who use the road many times and they are courteous and will wave cars around them. Really, who would block someones way unless trying to start a fight? He was looking for a fight when he approached the truck!

LAX

Baloney! Bicyclists have the right to the full lane if necessary. And they often take the full lane just to make sure you see them. Nobody is forcing you into the oncoming lane -- if you cannot pass then you MUST slow down and follow. That's the law.

RJRKim

Ok WiseAZZ !!! You ride your bike on an Interstate once. Ride in the lane of traffic on HWY 16. Ride in the lane of traffic on Mormon Coulee Rd. BE MY GUEST LAX and you'll get run over and if you act stupid the you are taken out like in nature with Natural Selection. It just takes out the dumb ones. So by all means just try it !!!!

LAX

Riding bikes on the Interstate is illegal, dummy! It is legal on Bliss and is even marked as a bike route. Same with Mormon Coulee or Highway 16...totally legal and if you run over or "take out" a cyclist riding legally on any of those roads, you will be arrested and charged, too. Just 'cause you're in a vehicle doesn't give you special rights...

union conservative

LAX....I can not even believe you would say these things meaningfully. You can not be serious about a lot you have written. In many ways you are wrong. Like someone said, the right is to ride safely and to ride in the lane of traffic and assume you have the right of way because you are on a bike is simply not safe and against the law. Because of what you right on here I would find for the truck driver and I don't even have a clue as to how this all started.

Grandma D

Wow! Are you trying to pick a fight with EVERYONE on here??? Ha! Maybe you and Mr. Bicyclist are brothers. Get off your high horse and realize roads are for everyone to use safely. The idiot bicyclist put his bike with his kids, no less, in FRONT of the truck. Stupid antagonist behavior if you ask me. I know, you weren't asking for it. lol

RJRKim

Well I thought by your word you are entitled to a lane of traffic on roads?? So by that you would have to agree that riding 2 bikes up HWY 18(1 in each lane) would be legal ??? Now as for the Interstate thing...YOU SAID a bike is entitled to a lane of traffic. Now you say what?????

INSOUCIANCE

Great example for the children

HonestAbe

No kidding, wonder what the kids were thinking. "Here goes dad trying to take on the world again ... we just wanted to go to the pool"

crank

The cyclist in this incident sounds like an entitled αss. The driver of the truck probably felt the same way I do when these jokers dress up in their Tour de France costumes and head out on their quest to be seen.

Despite the availability of numerous roads with bike lanes and a network of dedicated trails, they choose the narrowest, two-lane, winding roads with blind corners, no shoulders and hills to assert their right to impede traffic and give motorists heart attacks when they encounter a cyclist and have to slam on the brakes; Bliss Road, County S (Shefelbine's Hill).

Yes, the cyclists have a legal right to the road but c'mon man! Taking your kids cycling on Bliss Road then getting your panties in a wad because a motorist didn't feel safe crossing the center line to get around you? Then provoking an altercation (road rage) at an intersection with your kids present? You sound like a candidate for father of the year!

scrapiron

"Tour de France costumes"

You mean comfortable clothes designed specifically for cycling made of bright colors, so I'm less likely to be missed by inattentive drivers? That's not a "costume".

"quest to be seen"

Trust me, if there was a way to never be seen by a motorist, we would take it every time. But there you all are, driving on the roads our taxes paid for.

lookout

I've seen plenty of so call professional bicycle rides who think they own the road and treat motorists like they shouldn't be using the roads. They don't obey the rules of the road they cut in front of you all the time and seem to think giving the obscene gesture to motorists is one of the rules of the road. This sounds like one of those. Their both responsible for what happened. Every bike should have a readable licenses plate on it that's visible to all motorists from their cars like they had many years ago so drivers can report them when they think they own the road and break all the rules.

Grandma D

Great idea! I agree. They may have rights but they don't own the road and shouldn't impede traffic or be a danger to others. This guy pushed the envelope and ended up making an idiot out of himself. He should have called the police if he thought the guy in the truck did something wrong.

LAX

Neither do motorists OWN the road...

HonestAbe

actually LAX, vehicle drivers pay for roads, through registration fees .... would be a good idea for the city to implement a mandatory bicycle license that must be renewed yearly. they were going to tack it onto the vehicle owners that are already paying through the nose. Here's the solution .... cyclists want to pay to play too , now that I would support and be on board with.

can't have it both ways and not have eventual conflicts, as we see here

LAX

Actually, "HonestAbe" I do pay all the taxes, fees, etc. For anyone to argue that bicycles need to pay more is ridiculous. And even if we did pay a license fee, there'd still be idiots like you threatening bicyclists. If you don't like your vehicle fees, get a bike! Hahahahahaha!

HonestAbe

I haven't been physically ABLE to ride a bike for some time now, wish I could.

I MISS THE BIKE TRAIL NATURE RIDES.

Only DUI convicts HAVE to ride bikes, I've never drank and drove.

Only1Green

He tried to go around the front of the truck (biker's account)? Now whether the guy's turning left or right, wouldn't the truck have had the right of way? No the truck driver should not have pulled forward but as the saying goes, stupid is as stupid does

RJRKim

They are now enforcing the slow driver laws. If they slow down a driver and traffic because there is not the room to legally and safely pass then it;s the bicyclist that is in the wrong. Notice that in the La Crosse Tribune Photo that the motor vehicle is force to illegally cross the double yellow line to get around the non motor vehicle that pays no fees to use the roads.

CJ

Good point RJR

ElPresidente

Contrary to your beliefs, I pay plenty of fees to use the roads. Possibly more than you, so think before you speak.

RJRKim

How much is your bike license??

ElPresidente

Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't believe I need a license to ride a bike... Do your children have a license to ride their bikes?

RJRKim

You just proved my point and didn't even realize it. They don't have license plates on bike which means they DON'T pay for the road at all !! Motor vehicle licenses pay for the roads therefor bike don't have the right of way.

ElPresidente

I own a car, a motorcycle, I buy gas, I pay taxes just like you (I hope you pay your taxes)... I pay plenty for the roads. Do you think people that ride bikes only own a bike and that's it? Really? That ignorant?

jason janske

I think the City of La Crosse paid for the repairs of Bliss Rd. I think we all paid for that road.

team Human

You are correct, there is no bike license fee. I ask you this question though, What percentage of road repair funding comes from vehicle registration fees?

According to your logic, it should come entirely from those fees and not from any other form of state income, sales tax, federal taxes. If none of that other tax money is used for roadway work, then you have a valid argument.

team Human

I will give you a hint, only 5-10% come from registration fees.

Also, if more people biked for transportation than drove, highway maintenance costs would be much less too.

RJRKim

You sound like you are part of the Spandex Gang.

LAX

Nobody is FORCED to illegally cross a double yellow...slow your stupid butt down and wait until you can pass safely and legally.

Jobaba

The bicyclist sounds like a self-entitled fool. Bliss road? No. Confrontations? No.

However, sooner or later we must come to terms with this. Most modern countries see the bicycle as "just another vehicle". If you cannot safely pass a bike, you wait, just as if it were a car. They are assigned rights just as any vehicle.

It doesn't hurt to see a cyclist as another human as well.

This isn't going away.

LAX

Exactly!

dickey roberts

Professional Riders in this town have a bad attitude. Educate them on a legal stop for signs or signals requires stopping an putting a foot to the ground, not jumping into a crosswalk to cut the light or sign. Teaching you children rage? Good thing they didn't have to watch daddy get his nose flattened. Keep the kids out of danger.
I RIDE EVERY DAY!!!

RJRKim

When there is only enough room for motor vehicle traffic they are a danger to all. If they want equal space on a barely 2 lane road then they can pay a license fee like a motor vehicle does. If not, then stay off those roads !!!

ElPresidente

You still wouldn't be happy if they did, am I right?

let it go

Report the plate to the police and let them handle it. It was during rush hour and you decided to school a man on the rules of the road with 2 children with you? Maybe you should be charged with endangering your lives of your children as well.

scrapiron

I wasn't there, but even if I'm buying the cyclist's story, he seems like he's purposefully being a jerk.

Having said that, I'd like to respond to the many commenters here who claim to be fed up with cyclists who disregard traffic laws and disrupt traffic by rude behavior. I'm not defending that.

I have been an avid recreational cyclist and bike commuter for over 30 years and have probably logged close to a half million miles on Wisconsin roadways. While I am always courteous and obey all traffic laws consistently and deliberately, almost once a month I have a near-death experience while interacting with a rude, inattentive or unlawful motorist.

Yet somehow I am able to avoid posting hateful comments about all motorists and wish for their deaths, as I have seen commenters do here and on other forums. Am I just extraordinarily forgiving and peaceful? Probably not. More likely, people like "Honest Abe" are just extraordinary jerks. Most of us can get along. Let's do it.

Tim Russell

Abe is an idiot. Everyone on this site knows that. Just ask Goat Herder.

scrapiron

For all those who think bikes have no right to be on the road because of gas tax and registration:
(1) Nearly all of us "spandex warriors" own at least one car. Judging by the parking lots at organized rides and bike shops, I'd say many of us in the "spandex gang" pay at least our fair share of road tax.
(2) Most of the cost of building and maintaining highways does not come from funds related to vehicle ownership. There have been years of my life when I put many more miles on my bike than my car and other years when I didn't own a car. Should I have been whining about cars and trucks being on "my" roads. Based on the comments here, maybe I should have.

wakeup

Hope the driver is prosecuted and this case sends a message to other car drivers that you can't use your vehicle as a weapon. Also hope the Tribune will work with bike organizations and businesses to do a major BIKE EDUCATION (ie what's the law regarding bikes and bikes on roads - like the 3 foot law) pullout section during the Bike Fest next week. Bikes legally share almost all roads. Car drivers have to yield sa fe space. Period.

sallyjo

It's nice to know the rules and laws I agree that there should (needs to be) some education about this BUT people on bikes also need to be aware of where they are riding and just because it's allowed doesn't mean it's smart or safe.
I believe that both the cyclist AND the driver were in the wrong and they BOTH should be charged.

CJ

As someone that rides the back roads myself as a biker you have to have the smarts to stay close to the shoulder. When I drive through LaX many bikers there feel as though they deserve their own lane in traffic and that isn't the case........stay to the right and if the truck driver was a jerk get the plate and go from there.

ElPresidente

Agree totally! Can't tell you how many times I've said something to a fellow cyclists that run stop signs or don't move over. I'm gonna get punched one of these times.

let it go

The thing I find about road use is these bike paths and 3 foot rules give riders an excuse to not follow the flow of traffic. If he wanted something done he should have taken the guy's plate number and reported it to the police and let the law handle it. Instead, he thought he would give him a lesson while having 2 kids with him. The way he handled it showed inconsideration for other drivers and riders. He put his children at risk. And he did this at 5:30pm, rush hour.

LAX

No, the guy in the truck put the cyclist and his kids at risk...

lutefisk

See to much cyclists entitlement attitude. And I ride. Doesn't justify the truck owner. But dude.. You had your kid in a tagalong ON BLISS ROAD ¿ CLOWN

Mi scusi

BINGO Lutefisk. You said it best.

Ram

Regardless of what allegedly happened earlier, when they got to the stop light, the biker was clearly at fault for instigating a fight. All the motorist needs to say, is that he feared for his life with the lunatic ranting and raving around his vehicle so he drove away.

The stupidity of throwing his bike in front of a vehicle in a traffic lane is clear.

Comment deleted.
Tim Russell

Road Rage manifests itself in many different forms. I agree that the driver is an idiot. I also believe the bicyclist is guilty of acting upon his road rage and should have been charged with disorderly conduct. In this case it took 2 to tango.

Deadwood subscriber

So, informing a person of city ordinances is "disorderly conduct?"

Tim Russell

Disorderly conduct is a catch-all offense used to prohibit actions, threats, or words which could breach the peace or alarm others. So yes.


GBdad

Pretend those were your kids the driver almost hit. If your only reaction would be to smile and shrug your shoulders, you need to grow some sort of spine.

heyheyletsgo

There's a few large yellow Share the Road signs and pictures of bicycles painted all up and down Bliss Road. I took this to mean that it's a place where bicycles are supposed to go...there are not similar markings on e.g. Losey or Mormon Coulee. I'm super confused now.

HonestAbe

Those signs are reminding drivers that even though there is no shoulder and it is very dangerous to traverse that stretch by bicycle .... some slack jaw will still try peddling it in the middle of the road, thinking they are a vehicle that can keep to the speed limit.

I rode it when I was a kid, training for the Killer Hill Ride (72miles+) ... but guess what, I had a rear view mirror, and if I saw a car coming, I'd downshift and get to the right of the white line ... to be courteous, to be safe, and...to be within the law. At that time I was 16, you mean to tell me I had more sense at 16 than the spandex warriors of today? Physics has not changed.

team Human

I am curious about this sign warning of danger of cycling on this road...

And also, is it a law that you have to go the speed limit on a bicycle to be on a roadway?

team Human

Wow, you rode 72 whole miles? You must be really awesome...

Keep trolling Mr. Lexvold, enjoy your court date.

HonestAbe

Who in the world takes their kids on a Bliss Rd ride? Zero shoulder, the bicyclist should have been cited for impeding traffic as well. Stop blocking traffic and putting yourself in danger, spend the $ for a bike trail pass, they're gorgeous this time of year.

That driver should fight this tooth & nail !
Bicyclists feel to brave with all these 'rights' they have been preached they have ... they're forgetting common sense equations in their decision making, physics is not their strong point either.

THINK

ElPresidente

Trolling again... You should be cited yourself...

Ram

I tend to believe the motorist in this case. The arrogance of this cyclist that he would initiate such a confrontation in front of his kids shows he's a lunatic. If some hippie threw his toys in front of my truck I would run them over as well.

HonestAbe

Precisely Ram, ty for posting.

HonestAbe

It was the bicyclists fault, he approached the truck in a huff instead of calling police after obtaining the license plate. Bicyclist was looking for a fight even by what he admits.

"As he tried to drive around the bicyclist and the bikes, the cyclist threw the bike under his pickup’s tires." I totally believe that!

They use the 3' rule just to start confrontations, has happened to be to the point police arrived after the cyclist hippy from the co-op windex'd his spit off my cars windshield. He spit at me and though he could bicycle away from me lol. He's lucky I did call the police!

If you're so intent on the 3' rule, use some yard sticks to stick out to claim your space .... or wear a mountable camera like smart people do, so there is no questions of fault should something happen. This biker was out to find a fight, and found one, amazed he wasn't cited. kids biking on bliss road is dumb

team Human

Then why did the police arrest the motorist?

team Human

If it was the cyclists fault, why did the witness story back up the cyclist and why was the motorist arrested?

oz

Is your name Lexvold?

Sounds like something you would do.

monroe54656

Who in the world takes their kids on a Bliss Rd ride? I do. I have been riding Bliss road for almost 30 years, and I have had very few motorist who have been rude. Do I feel I put myself in danger, hell no.

Automobile drivers feel too brave with all these 'rights' they have been preached they have ... they're forgetting common sense equations in their decision making, physics is not their strong point either.

Just think.

Mi scusi

Russell you are an idiot. Go sit with Lexvold the Loser.

Tim Russell

While I don't believe that Miner through the bikes under the trucks wheels, he is guilty of disorderly conduct for thinking that anybody had to listen to him.

team Human

If you are going to troll, don't be so obvious about it....

nursemba

He was just sad the drive thru at Bluffside was not open yet

Clarification

Methinks truck guy's story is made up.. Couldn't hear but made an obscene gesture? Uh-huh. Another one of the many tales from loserville. I'm surprised nobody shot anyone.

Ram

Sometimes I'm not in the mood to hear a hippie whining. The motorist's story makes perfect sense.

team Human

"A witness confirmed Miner’s narration."

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