I’m writing this letter with hopes that our bike paths become safer. I ask that all individuals who travel the paths please, please, please follow the common sense rules of the path/road to ensure the safety of all.

This past Wednesday, June 12, I was biking up the hill on the bike path above Farrell Park when another bicyclist passed me on the right, even though there was ample space on the left and there was no oncoming “ traffic.” 

The rider gave absolutely no warning before passing and came dangerously close to my bike. This quick maneuver was very startling and I could have easily lost control of my bike. Fortunately, we didn’t collide. I shouted, “God, you scared me!” But the fellow went right by. Oddly, he wasn’t geared up like a speed racer, nor was he going particularly fast, yet he disregarded my safety just to get ahead. The simple courtesy of slowing down, warning and passing on the left would have been easy, not to mention that it’s bicycle safety conduct 101. A fall on a bicycle can be very serious. Is passing so inconsiderately worth an injury to yourself and others? 

We all bike/walk at different speeds – please use common sense and courtesy when passing. There isn’t a “minimum speed limit” on the paths – riders who choose to go fast are expected to respect those traveling at lesser speeds.

This isn’t the first time I’ve experienced “near misses” while walking and biking and I’m sure readers can relate to my concerns. One slight shift to the right or left could result in a serious accident if others aren’t passing safely.

I have always considered the recreation paths to be a peaceful alternative to using roadways for both leisure and my commute to work. It’s very discouraging that experiences like I’ve described even happen.

Please, let’s all be considerate of others and use the paths safely.

Margaret Palombo

South Burlington

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