Ghost Bike Vigil for Amanda
The ‘Dutch Reach’ anti-dooring project began in tragedy, anger, fear, and sorrow. A vibrant and loved young woman was killed blocks away in perhaps the commonest of in-city bike/car crashes.
Doorings, being doored, or 'near-door experiences' are dreaded daily by urban cyclists: A car, parked or just stopped in traffic. From left or right a door flung open just in front of you. Shout!! Brake if you can, swerve as you must. Pray as you crash - into, over, under, strewn into on-coming traffic. Or not. Curse, bike on. Shaken. What if...
A day after Amanda's death I got a disturbingly obvious 'what if' revelation from another shook cyclist:
Ask the question, “Which hand do you use to open your car door?” Puzzlement. “Why, this one, my left…of course.” “But the Dutch do it differently.” “Oh???” ”They use their right, their far hand. It’s much safer." “What?! …Ooohh! I get it! It makes you turn, it’s easier to look! So simple! It’s obvious! I just never thought about it!”
Far smarter than handing out doored-prizes.
Cyclists, drivers, passengers, we need each other to make our daily travel safer and less hassled. And at one time or another we ARE each other.
So let’s tell everyone the Dutch secret. It's commonsense.
-- Michael Charney, Cambridge, MA, USA
Seven months on, now it is 'My Lord Dutch Reach'
State of this Project & Website
Please note that this project only started 6/24/08, now three months ago. I purchased the domain 5 days ago at this writing (9/27) and immediately began construction in response to rapid media attention -- the 9/8/16 Boston Globe article "To avoid dooring, this cyclist...", and fast on, the 9/19/16 Outside Magazine Online article & video "How the Dutch Reach Could Save Lives" featured on the Home page.
Plain to see, my site savvy, design and editing skills are weak, and anyone with interest and WordPress mojo please your mentoring would be most welcome!
Hopefully it - this site - will get better! (The Comment section and Contact page are likely to be sub-par if not non-functional for a while. So rather than spend too talking to ourselves -- please help spread the word with links, Likes, tweaks, whatever. For starters there's Outside Oneline's video, Steve Annear's Boston Globe's story, and www.DutchReach.org itself to share. This is a small 'ask' which is unusually well received. Yet it can go a long way to increase vigilance and respect for cyclists while automatically making car exit safer for everyone.
You can find links to share at Media Coverage above.
Credits & Acknowledgments, Witting & Unwitting*
Anonymous 'shook cyclist'; Nudge Blog; Prof. Ruth Oldenziel, Eindhoven University, NL; Russell Shorto, The New York Times; Deputy Police Chief Stephen Carrabino, City of Somerville Police Dept.; The Boston Globe & staff reporters Steve Annear & Martine Powers; Amy Saltzman, Editor, Cambridge Chronicle/Wicked Local; Massachusetts Bicycle Coalition, Richard Fries, Exec. Dir.; Jon Ramos, Boston Bike Party; Lissy Herman - 'Dutch Reach' illustration & line drawing; Montreal Bicycle Coalition; Dr. Anne Lusk, Harvard School of Public Health; City of San Francisco's SFMTA & SFGOVTV with Vision Zero - SF, SF Bicycle Coalition & Walk SF; Hans Voerknecht, CROW.NL; Simon Rios, WBUR; Jennifer Molina, City of Somerville; Ken Carlson, & Somerville Bicycle Committee; Reporter Ben Fox, videographer Marie Sullivan, Fitness Editor Wes Judd & all members of Outside's Editors' Video Team, Outside Magazine Online; Cambridge Bicycle Safety; Marco Werman & Bradley Campbell of WGBH, PRI/BBC World Service 'The World'; Diane Jenks, The Outspoken Cyclist; Dennis _, Ronkonkoma, Inc.; Dan Strollo, In Control Safety; John Paul, NE AAA; Jeffrey Larason; [City of ~] Cambridge Community Development & Marie Macchiarolo: Cambridge Street Code; Pat Bibbins & Emily O'Brien, Medford Bicycle Advisory Commission; UK Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents - Road Safety; Canadian Member of Parliament Joël Lightbound & staff; City Council of Winnipeg Manitoba & Councilman Matt Allard; Washington Area Bicycle Association; British Transport Secretary Chris Grayling (unintentional assist); LBC UK; CB TV - Manitoba; Dutch Cycling Embassy; Michael O'Reilly, Exective Style; Bike Saves PH; Femke Zeilstra, translator; Rahel Wachs, illustrator of child using far hand reach; Alex Bowden, road.cc; Sam Jones, CyclingUK; Doug Smith & Washington Area Bicycle Assn; John S. Allen; David C. Read, Longwood Area Cyclists & Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; Healthy Homes/ Healthy Work program of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston; & many more to come.
Also: Credit is due to all who have picked up, shared and elaborated on the Dutch Reach method on the web: 99percentinvisible.org, Upworthy.com, Lloyd Alter, TreeHugger.com, BikeAccidentLawyersBlog.com, Cleantechnica.com, The Guardian - UK, The Telegraph - UK, mumset, ycombinator, and myriad bloggers, reddit members, diverse bike groups, auto dealers, radio stations, etc. etc. who are getting out the word.
- Note: More to come; surnames shall only be added if consent received.
- Listing of names does not imply endorsement or participation.