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April 04, 2013


Steve Fitzpatrick

My deepest condolences to a fellow biker and his family. I guess the adage "Look before you Leap" applies here.
I've been guilty several times of similar events, fortunately surviving unscathed.

Alan M

In the rural areas around Brockville, we have a double track for high-speed freight and VIA trains on the main CN line. The train traffic is heavy enough that it's quite common to have two trains in opposite directions at the same time, or overlapped within a minute or two, at rural level crossings with lights/bells but no gates. Those who figure they can ignore the warnings, or take off without looking as soon as the end of one train clears, are mostly not with us any more. It's sad that the elderly man in this situation couldn't be patient for a few more seconds.


I really feel for this man's family. The death of a friend or family member who was obviously still healthy and active is always painful. It is a sad event, and there is no one to blame for this other then the deceased. It is a horrific reminder that we all have a responsibility to travel as safely as possible, and follow the rules.

I know that I sometimes ride though stop signs, especially at an empty intersection, a habit that could result in my putting myself in significant danger. I’m sure this was not the first time the rider jumped ahead of the gate at the crossing, and the habit this time had a disastrous result.

We have to work on letting safety, ours and those we share the roads with, be a priority, and not get caught up in rushing to our destination. This should be easier in a car where high speed motion is the result of a minor flexing of muscles, then when on the bike where losing momentum means having to work really hard to get it back, but mentally it is the same, pausing and waiting is hard.


Alan M - I grew up around Brockville, and after reading this story, I was reminded of the two or three years in a row that teenagers were killed on the train tracks doing exactly the same thing:

Wait until the last car of the train goes by.
Duck under the barrier and start to cross the tracks.
Get hit by the train on the other set of tracks.

I don't screw around with level crossings. Those stories, starring people who were 15 or 16 at the same time as me, definitely made an impact.

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Bill Bean

  • North America is eventually going to figure out that, for all the right reasons, we need more bicycles on our roads. Dust off your bicycle and go cycling. And if the gas-burning dinosaurs start to crowd you, it's your road and you paid for it. Take the lane for yourself.

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