Could you always ride in a bike lane?

What if everywhere you rode there was a bike lane?

bike sideline

Taken from the Dirt Rag blog, the above picture is what Byron Loibl, an industrial design graduate form the Cleveland Institute of Art, is hoping will be the next step in urban riding safety.

The Sideline emits a light that travels along about two feet to your left so there’s always a mark for how far away cars should stay. This is a brilliant idea, especially in areas of the country where the majority of drivers don’t know bikes are allowed on the road and have no idea how to act around them. Giving the drivers a clear mark of the space they should give will save lives.

I do wonder if there will be any applications for the normal bike commuter since we ride mostly during the day. Is there any visibility?

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0 thoughts on “Could you always ride in a bike lane?”

  1. Logan says:

    I’m waiting for the beta version that will pop their tires with a laser if they get too close.

  2. Fritz says:

    That’s kinda cool.

  3. Mike in Florida says:

    There’s already a low-tech version of this. It’s called a FLAG, the “Flash Flag” to be precise.

    I have been using one, and I think it accomplishes exactly what the “Sideline” does, but it’s more visible to drivers.


  4. Melissa says:

    Looks great! I would love to have this here in Los Angeles. People seem to pass me the right distance (or much more, some people are deathly afraid of bikes it seems…I even had a cabbie tell me he was terrified of ‘you bicyclists’…) or entirely too close. When people pass me too closely it usually is the big vehicles – suvs, hummers, etc. And when I tell them they seem to not have known they were so close. Guess if I was in a monstrosity like a hummer I wouldn’t really know I was a hog either. I’d definitely buy this, esp if it is visible in the day!… thinking I may buy the flash flag thing until then…

  5. says:

    Links Of The Day: 11 July 2007…

    From The Bike-o-Sphere

    Five Grounds for Immediate Equipment Reappropriation
    Could you always ride in a bike lane?
    Poor Man’s Disc Wheel

    In The News

    Cycling In Tucson (video)
    NH DOT should consult its own bicycle board
    Galveston Island Bicycle…

  6. Fritz says:

    Mike, good point about the flash flag.

  7. Mike in Florida says:

    The Flash Flag is pretty ingenious in its simplicity. It’s spring mounted, so it waves as you pedal down the road. The one I have has two big strips of reflective tape sewn on it, so it’s really visible at night. It’s not perfect, though. The flag mounts to the seatstay, so when it’s extended it’s pretty low, and it’s short. But if it was longer you couldn’t fold it up when not in use. All in all, a good product.

  8. Ghost Rider says:

    I’m with Logan — make a laser strong enough to burst a tire or scramble DNA if a driver gets too close!!!

    Seriously, it is a cool idea.

  9. geoffrey says:

    ummm .. take the lane. I can appreciate ignorant motorholics have a thing for marginalising cyclists but this will not be resolved as long as motorists are tolerated bullying cyclists.

    that said i prefer a device which emits a high emf disabling all vehicles approaching within 3 m behind and 1 m to the side. the perimeter detection system is trivial. the power source for the emf is something of a challenge.

  10. Doug says:

    Not a bad idea, but it seems a little gimmicky. The flag works well, and it’s low-tech…meaning less to break. Also, I assume it only gives you the perfect distance if you are riding straight…what if you lean into a corner, or out of one…will it stretch a red light across the entire intersection? Nope…too gimmicky, sorry. Give me something simple and I’m likely to use it…make it complicated…and I probably won’t.

  11. Jack says:

    Byron should also considered one of the earlier steps in urban riding safety, a helmet.

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