Share the road

  • Published
  • By Col. Michael McKenna
  • Air Force Flight Test Center Safety
With the wind in your face as you cruise past the lakebed heading for that final hill, your concentration is shattered by a side view mirror of a four-wheeler that whizzes past your head.
"What the heck are they thinking? Why didn't they move over to the other lane?" 

Situations like this are becoming all too familiar along Edwards roads. Bikers of all types beware, four-wheelers are not as good at sharing the road as they need to be. 

In the last three years on base, there has been at least two incidents of cyclists being hit by the side view mirror of a large vehicle because that vehicle insisted on staying in its lane. There have also been reports of cars that have forced motorcyclists off the road -- one causing the biker to lay their bikes down in the dirt because of the aggressive driving.

Sharing the road takes on a whole new perspective when you are on the receiving end of a four-wheeler driver who never learned how to "share" in kindergarten. 

Car drivers listen -up, we need to do a better job of sharing the road with our two wheeled bicyclers and motorcyclist. 

Unfortunately, a few of our roads have rumble strips that are positioned such that a two wheeler doesn't have enough room on either side of the strips to ride safely. These strips force bikers to ride closer to the right hand lane. If you see a cyclist in the right hand lane give them a break and change lanes if traffic permits. 

With the great weather ahead, expect families to be out riding along our roadways. Put yourself in their pedals and pass the cyclists the way you would want to be passed. Always watch out for motorcycles, especially in your blind spot, and leave extra stopping distance between you and the bikers. Sometimes, we are King Kong in our sports utility vehicles or minivans, but we need to show that we are mature enough to handle it by driving responsibly. 

Share the road. It's all of our responsibility.