Columns/Opinion, Letters to the Editor

Bikers should warn walkers when passing

Sue Overman, Morgantown
I was glad to see the article on biking, encouraging people to do more, especially on this wonderful asset we have — the rail trail. We live right off the trail and can go three directions from home, and have often biked on it for fun or transportation. I have done grocery shopping at Aldi and the Sabraton Kroger by bike.

We actually use the trail more for walking, trying to get our daily steps in. We are older, and not hearing as well as we used to. Sometimes I start to lose my balance, and waver when I catch myself.
I am hoping I never waver in front of a biker. Hardly ever do bikers warn you that they are coming, and they often completely surprise and shock us. I know not all bikers have bells, but if people would just say “passing” or “on your left,” it is so helpful.
When I bike, I ring my bell once at a larger distance from a walker, and then again as I get closer in case they didn’t hear.
When the rules are listed, that is one of them, to warn people when you pass. I was disappointed to not see that point mentioned in this article.

As we get older, we should be encouraged to continue to use the trail to walk on, or bike at a slower pace. We shouldn’t feel we need to quit using this wonderful asset just because we don’t hear a bike approaching, or get startled easily.
Please emphasize that it is important to warn people before you pass — maybe even several times before you reach them. It will be greatly appreciated by those of us walking the trail.