Students who walk to class seem to be butting heads with those who prefer to ride bikes or skateboard on campus – just ask Dustin Rainwater.
Last week Rainwater was nearly struck from behind by a bike rider in front of Eaton Residential College.
“You can hear the skateboarders coming but the bikers creep up on you,” Rainwater, a senior, said, adding that when the bike rider tried to go around Rainwater he lost control and slammed into a pole. “His entire front wheel was bent. This kind of thing happens all the time and it’s crazy.”
Nora McDonald, a sophomore who walks to class, said it is confusing when she is faced with a bike rider or skateboarder.
“I never know which way they’re going,” she said.
Other students said there is no question when it comes to who should move out of the way.
“People on wheels expect you to get out of the way. I don’t move. I have the right of way,” Dan Messick, a sophomore, said. Recently Messick had a bike rider stop a couple of inches behind him and abruptly circle him from the left.
When collisions do occur, they go unreported, so university officials are not aware of how frequently they occur.
“As far as I know, there have not been any police reports filed in the past year that involved two or more students colliding while utilizing the sidewalks and pathways throughout the campus,” said John Pepper, crime prevention coordinator.
Still, some students such as Stephen Seto don’t see collisions as a problem.
“I get to the Memorial Building within four minutes and get to practice surfing at the same time,” Seto said about riding his long board. “People are always scared I’m going to crash into them so they move as far away from me as possible, but I know what I’m doing.”
Valerie Reyes may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.