Letters to the Editor

Concerned sharrows don’t aid drivers, cyclists

I’d like to offer some comments about the new bicycle street markings that are called “sharrows.” I believe they have not improved the safety of travel on the streets of Bellingham either for the bicyclists or for the motoring public. They are confusing and, according to the “Rules of the Road” column in the Aug. 31 Herald, not being used in the manner which the “thoughtful” designers intended. Even if, after a lengthy indoctrination period, we do become trained, how about the many tourists that come to Bellingham without benefit of months of training? More confusion. If bicyclists would simply obey the traffic laws they would be far safer than thinking they are protected by green-marked sharrows and thus need not either obey the laws or be watchful of motorized vehicles that may not see them.

And the cost. Having read in earlier editions of the newspaper about the thousands of dollars being spent on this project I have to wonder what more needy or worthy project is being delayed or set aside. Where are these funds coming from? Certainly not from gas or highway taxes paid by bicyclists.

I am not opposed to the use of the roads by the biking public and think it is wonderful that so many of our citizens partake in this form of transportation. But, they need to obey the laws of the road. The sharrows are pretty however, being a nice bright Seahawk green.

Wallace Wilson