Cyclist Survey 

January 1, 2018 

Summary

On January 1, 2018, the Mount Diablo State Park held its first “Share The Road” safety event.  On this day, typically hundreds of cyclists and motorists travel to the summit to start off the new year.  A total of 128 cyclists completed a written survey.  The data revealed the following themes:

Cyclists believe the recent safety improvements are effective

  • Double Lines – 75% report effective
  • “Do Not Pass Bikes on Blind Curves” signs: 90% report effective
  • “Avoid Crash – Slow Down” signs: 66% report effective

Although cyclists believe the roads are safer, drivers continue to make unsafe passes in the park.

  • Cyclists reported a total of 336 passes on blind curve while riding up the mountain.  Given that only a portion of the total cyclists in the park completed the survey, the total estimated number of unsafe passes could have been over 1,000 incidents.  Considering the number of cars, bikes, and pedestrians on the park roads that day, it is remarkable that there were no serious accidents.  In addition, cyclists reported a total of 825 safe passes. This indicates that 29% of the reported 1,161 bike passes were unsafe.

Cyclists support the recently installed bike turnouts

  • 100% indicated they would use bike turnouts to allow cars to pass
  • Cyclists recommended making the Bike Turnout signs permanent and more visible.

Cyclists believe the State Park Non-Emergency # (916) 358-0333 to report a Near-Miss Collision, Road Hazard or Unlawful Activity needs to be publicized

  • 95% (121) Did not know the State Park Non-Emergency#
  • 5%     (7) Knew the State Park Non-Emergency#

Cyclists appreciated the January 1 safety event.  They support the Park’s efforts to add solid double yellow lines, improve signage and bike turnouts.  Clearly, these interventions are making a difference.  Unfortunately, passing on blind curves continues to be problematic, but safety is now a point of emphasis more than ever before.

Cyclist Survey 

January 1, 2018

Data

As part of a New Year’s day event at the summit of Mt. Diablo, cyclists were asked to complete a survey to gather information about safety in the Park.  128 cyclists took the survey.  Not everyone answered every question.  All written comments are included.

1. How often do you ride up Mount Diablo? 

22% (28)     2-4 times/week

39% (49)     2-4 times/month

34% (43)     2-4 times/year

5%      (7)    First Time

2. Where did you enter the Park today?

North Gate:  41% (53)

South Gate:  59% (75)

What was your destination? (  ) Junction     (128) Summit      (    ) Other_________

3. How many vehicles passed you on a Blind Curve?

84 Cyclists reported a total of 336 Blind Curve incidents, or an average of 4 incidents per reporting cyclist.

4. How many vehicles passed you in a safe location?

98 Cyclists reported a total of 825 safe passings, or an average of 9 safe passings per reporting cyclist.

5.  How are Solid Double Yellow lines making the roads safer?

There were three general categories of response:  Supportive, Not Supportive, and Don’t Know/No Response.   Responses are listed as written within each category.

Supportive of Solid Double Lines: 75%  (96)

  • Should be keeping cars from crossing,
  • Yes!,
  • cars are slowing down, making motorists aware,
  • they work 80%,
  • much safer cars take less risks,
  • they are a bit,
  • keep cars from passing us,
  • reminder to stay in lane,
  • less blind curves than before,
  • 10/10 much better,
  • good idea safety first,
  • yes,
  • hopefully they make drivers aware,
  • cars are more mindful,
  • excellent,
  • making drivers consider if they should pass or not,
  • I think it does make people more aware,
  • drivers/riders more cautious,
  • people are more respectful now,
  • discourage lane crossing,
  • seems to slow them down,
  • seems so,
  • a little better,
  • I think they are motorists don’t pass on double yellow,
  • no passing for either cars & cyclists,
  • help delineate the lanes,
  • it seems better than 2 yrs ago – but ask me after the descent,
  • yes,
  • improve definition of ½ the road,
  • less passing,
  • yes – should reduce blind curve risk,
  • makes some cars more careful,
  • only help when drivers pay attention,
  • hopefully cars do no attempt to pass other cars when they see double yellow,
  • Yes it used to be much worse,
  • somewhat helping,
  • people less likely to try to pass,
  • excellent,
  • good to be aware of the road,
  • fewer unsafe passes I think,
  • Yes,
  • education for drivers,
  • people are more attentive,
  • very much good,
  • more awareness,
  • cars don’t pass when it’s unsafe to do so,
  • it has made it better,
  • increasing driver awareness,
  • drivers are courteous,
  • keeping traffic in their lane,
  • slightly,
  • fewer drivers pass on Blind Curves,
  • safer,
  • good,
  • no passing into opposite lane,
  • good,
  • drivers pay attention,
  • they really help,
  • 99% obey the rules 1% can ruin your day,
  • it seems people are trying follow the rules,
  • traffic totally calmer than 3 or 4 years ago only one oncoming vehicle came across line today,
  • I bet they do I see less crazy driving than I used to,
  • cars are passing safer – descending cyclists stay on their side,
  • cars are only passing when it was safe,
  • yes,
  • limit but not eliminate lane crossing,
  • cars less inclined to pass,
  • so much better – Thank You,
  • more bikes and cars stay in there lane,
  • extra warning,
  • people (drivers) seem to respect them,
  • I feel cars are safer than last year,
  • limit passing,
  • cars are more cautious when passing,
  • visibility & clear rules,
  • certainly better but not fool proof,
  • cars are more aware to stay on one side,
  • yes cars a little more cautious when passing,
  • slows down driver,
  • cars are more hesitant to pass,
  • seem to be slowing folks down,
  • cars are looking out more,
  • makes other aware,
  • gets drivers attention,
  • they make you aware of the middle of the road,
  • I didn’t notice but think it makes the road much safer,
  • good,
  • yes cars are calmer,
  • drivers paying attention,
  • keeping traffic in lane not passing,
  • yes great safety measure,
  • make cars more hesitant to pass when blind,
  • less vehicle passing unsafely,
  • OK,
  • yes,

Not Supportive of Solid Double Lines 15% (19)

  • don’t think there are-cars ignoring up and down,
  • drivers sometimes pass,
  • marginal motorists still X lines,
  • it doesn’t stop cars from crossing into opposing lane,
  • very little noticeable impact,
  • it won’t cars will still pass,
  • no,
  • on days like today not too,
  • I’m not sure cars are paying attention to them,
  • not sure if they do,
  • don’t notice,
  • makes drivers think/pause – but they still do it,
  • no education for drivers,
  • I don’t think they make a difference,
  • it’s 50/50,
  • not sure they are,
  • take lane to prevent passing,
  • probably would not help,
  • not much difference,

Don’t Know/No Response about Double Double Lines: 10% (13)

  • ?,
  • ?,
  • DNK,
  • NA,
  • not sure,
  • not sure,
  • ?,
  • ?,
  • not sure,
  • not sure doesn’t seem to impact passing,
  • No response

6. How are DO NOT PASS BIKES ON BLIND CURVES signs making the roads safer?

There were five general categories of response:  Supportive, Mildly Supportive, Not Supportive Don’t Know/No Response, and Suggestions.   Responses are listed as written within each category.

Supportive of "Do Not Pass" Signs: 79% (101)

  • as a reminder,
  • slowing down drivers,
  • 50% better,
  • makes cars think twice,
  • makes motorists aware,
  • they seem to work well,
  • definitely,
  • I think so,
  • keeps cars from passing us,
  • reminder,
  • better seems less of a problem,
  • 10/10,
  • excellent,
  • reminder,
  • excellent,
  • excellent,
  • seems better than before they were in place,
  • almost all people respect this,
  • discouraging some cars from passing,
  • constant reminder to motorists,
  • better as time goes on,
  • helping make drivers more aware that it’s not safe to do so,
  • awareness,
  • more safe,
  • increase awareness,
  • at the bottom of south gate they seem affective,
  • working,
  • help,
  • makes some cars more careful,
  • very helpful some days,
  • hopefully it raises awareness for drivers & increased cautious behavior,
  • at least folks consider it,
  • it does cyclist will block the blind turn to slow cars from pass,
  • keep people from pass us,
  • excellent,
  • they alert drivers that someone might be descending,
  • limited the accident,
  • seemed safer today than in New Years past,
  • Yes,
  • great education drivers,
  • repetition,
  • very good help,
  • good reminder,
  • makes cars aware that it’s not safe,
  • yes seems to remind people,
  • it has made it better,
  • increasing driver awareness,
  • drivers more aware – cyclists too,
  • reminding not to pass,
  • making drivers aware,
  • safer,
  • cool,
  • helping a lot,
  • no run into downhill traffic,
  • very good need more,
  • drivers pay attention,
  • I think they help,
  • makes some of them think twice,
  • cars observed it very well,
  • some cars seem to actually read them,
  • people seem to pay attention to where they pass,
  • cars are only passing when it was safe,
  • helping,
  • yes,
  • more cars seem to heed,
  • love seeing this to remind cars,
  • cars are more aware,
  • makes drivers aware,
  • drivers more patient,
  • building awareness,
  • drivers seem a bit more cautious,
  • good reminder for vehicles especially those new to the area,
  • I think it does,
  • I feel cars are safer than last year,
  • limit passing,
  • increasing awareness,
  • certainly better but not fool proof,
  • it helps,
  • cars notice them and pay more attention,
  • I feel they are helping a lot,
  • makes driver more cautious,
  • make drivers (and cyclists) more aware,
  • yes & talk @entry Kiosk too,
  • big help,
  • cars are less likely to pass,
  • they help,
  • think they are,
  • awareness,
  • they are good you cannot miss seeing them,
  • love seeing those signs,
  • very,
  • seem to be working,
  • yes fewer cars passing on the curves,
  • drivers paying attention,
  • keep traffic sane,
  • yes,
  • guilt trip cars,
  • less vehicle passing unsafely,
  • better,
  • yes,
  • have helped,

Mildly Supportive of "Do Not Pass" Signs: 9% (11)

  • maybe a little,
  • possible helping,
  • very little but necessary,
  • a little better,
  • better than not,
  • remind me,
  • sometimes but many drivers do not care,
  • frankly I think it works 50/50 I was passed on blind curves many times,
  • yes some,
  • caution working,
  • when motorists follow them,

Not Supportive of "Do Not Pass" Signs: 1% (1)

  • questionable,

Don’t Know about "Do Not Pass" Signs: 9% (11)

  • DNK,
  • not sure,
  • not sure people are following the signs,
  • unsure,
  • not sure,
  • no response (6)

Suggestions: 3% (4)

  • ask car drivers,
  • more awareness for drivers,
  • driver may need stronger reminder,
  • I don’t think drivers understand “blind curve,”

7. How are AVOID CRASH – SLOW DOWN signs making the roads safer?

There were four general categories of response:  Supportive, Mildly Supportive, Not Supportive, and  Don’t Know/Haven’t Seen.   Responses are listed as written within each category.

Supportive of "AVOID CRASH – SLOW DOWN" Signs: 58% (74)

  • As a reminder,
  • make you think,
  • 80% better,
  • make it safer,
  • yes,
  • keeping cars from passing us,
  • reminder,
  • 6/10,
  • excellent,
  • reminder,
  • excellent,
  • more awareness for bikers & drivers,
  • excellent,
  • again drivers/riders more cautious,
  • good,
  • same reminder to motorists,
  • hopeful,
  • remind me,
  • awareness,
  • working,
  • helping,
  • makes some bike/car slow down,
  • good for descending before sharp curves,
  • makes folks think,
  • more signs that flash helps,
  • yes,
  • reminding everyone to slow down,
  • alerting people,
  • awaken the riders or car riders,
  • Yes,
  • more,
  • stating the obvious is important,
  • Avoid Crash Slow Down Yes,
  • reminds cyclists to descend at a safe speed,
  • yes seems to remind people,
  • it has made it better,
  • helps less experienced cyclists descend,
  • reminding cyclists,
  • slowing,
  • slowing traffic including bikes,
  • safer,
  • very,
  • keep people aware to slow down,
  • great,
  • drivers pay attention,
  • yes,
  • makes some of them think twice,
  • helping,
  • awareness,
  • I think bikes go slower,
  • duhhh of course – keep control of the bike,
  • awareness,
  • good reminder for cyclists,
  • I feel cars are safer than last year,
  • reminder to cyclists & cars to slow down,
  • watching my speed,
  • love the flashing signal,
  • some vehicles obey others don’t Overall it’s better,
  • reminds people to ride safely,
  • make drivers (and cyclists) more aware,
  • when people pay attention to them,
  • good,
  • cars and bikes are safer,
  • they make us aware,
  • reminds cyclists,
  • for drivers that respect the sharing of the road they are a good reminder,
  • love those,
  • very,
  • keep traffic sane,
  • yes,
  • good reminder of tight turns,
  • OK,
  • helpful,
  • have helped,

Mildly Supportive of "AVOID CRASH – SLOW DOWN" Signs: 8% (10)

  • I think so,
  • maybe a little,
  • possibly helping,
  • maybe a little,
  • hopefully a bit,
  • yes some,
  • hopefully cyclists are paying attention,
  • we need to slow down too,
  • probably helping,
  • probably slow down bikes a little bit,

Not Supportive of "AVOID CRASH – SLOW DOWN" Signs: 1% (1)

  • prob not much,

Don’t Know/ Haven’t Seen "AVOID CRASH – SLOW DOWN" Signs: 34% (43)

  • DNK,
  • not sure,
  • didn’t notice on descent?,
  • unsure,
  • I don’t know,
  • not sure few drivers were going too fast,
  • not sure,
  • didn’t see only uphill so far,
  • did not see,
  • not sure,
  • not sure,
  • don’t know traffic slower than years ago,
  • no idea,
  • didn’t notice,
  • did not notice this as much,
  • not sure,
  • ?,
  • not sure,
  • I don’t know,
  • ?,
  • haven’t seen them yet,
  • not sure,
  • not sure,
  • not sure,
  • No Response – 19

 8.  Did you see the Bike Turnout signs as you rode up the mountain?

99% (125) Yes;   1% (1) No

How could this signage be improved?

There were five general categories of suggestions:  Multiple, Visibilty,  Permanent, Roadway, Location, Education, and Quantity. Other statemens supported the existing turnouts.   Responses are listed as written within each category.

Multiple Suggestions for Bike Turnout Signs: 12% (7)

  • Size Bigger & more,
  • brighten & permanent,
  • painted lines/permanent signs,
  • it works but larger permanent signs would be better,
  • taller permanent signs,
  • make permanent have signs asking motorists to wait to pass until turnout,
  • big & use turnout,

Visibility Suggestions for Bike Turnout Signs: 26% (15)

  • more visible,
  • flashing light,
  • bigger signs for cars,
  • make it flash,
  • bigger,
  • bright yellow,
  • high vis paint,
  • reflector/flashing,
  • blinker,
  • bigger/brighter,
  • keep the foliage cut back,
  • larger,
  • bright colors,
  • bigger lead up sign,
  • slightly bigger signs would help,

Permanent Suggestions for Bike Turnout Signs: 7% (4)

  • make permanent,
  • permanent signs,
  • make permanent,
  • permanent,

Roadway Improvement Suggestions for Bike Turnout Signs: 9% (5)

  • works well just need lines,
  • maybe an arrow in lane like European style,
  • rumble stop on drivers’ side,
  • paint lines,
  • better pavement,

Location Suggestions for Bike Turnout Signs: 16% (9)

  • earlier,
  • advance notice “Bike Turnout ¼ mile,
  • sign should be 500ft before turnout so cars can know to wait
  • warning info ¼ mile ahead,
  • put them in the ground,
  • X feet ahead,
  • signage for 1st turnout is too far from turnout,
  • post earlier,
  • more sooner catch drivers attention,

Education Suggestions for Bike Turnout Signs: 4% (2)

  • advising riders to use them,
  • tell cars when they come up,

Quantity Suggestions for Bike Turnout Signs: 7% (4)

  • more of them,
  • maybe a few more,
  • more of them,
  • more needed,

Supportive of Existing Bike Turnout Signs: 19% (11)

  • good,
  • good,
  • it’s good,
  • very clear already,
  • good and frequent,
  • good,
  • very good,
  • it’s good,
  • work fine,
  • yes,
  • always room for improvement

 9.  How many Bike Turnouts did you use today?   

Average: 2

 10.  Would you use a Bike Turnout to allow vehicles to safely pass you on Blind

Curve?

(123) Yes

( 0) No - Please explain_________________________

 11.  How many Bike Turnouts would you like to see on Mount Diablo?

16%  (17)  40 – 50

7%    (8)  30 – 40  

25%  (27)  20 – 30

41%  (44)  10 – 20

11%  (12)  Other (as many as possible, needed, required, not sure, every blind turn)

 12. What is the phone number to report an unlawful act to a Ranger?

(eg: a vehicle passing you unsafely or nearly hitting you?)

  5%       (7)  Knew State Park Emergency # (916-358-0333)

95 % (121)  Did not know State Park Emergency #

 

Additional Comments?

Thanks for Safety Improvements/Safety Event  (42)

  • I notice car drivers are less nuts on the North Gate,
  • thanks for doing the survey,
  • love the bike turnouts,
  • thank you for all you do,
  • thank you for your work so far,
  • thanks Happy NY,
  • you folks have done good work I appreciate it,
  • MTD safer now,
  • thanks,
  • love seeing so many people out we love this park it’s best to keep everyone safer,
  • thanks,
  • thank you Happy 2018,
  • getting better every day,
  • thank you it’s already helping,
  • good work keep it up,
  • promote good will be courteous,
  • keep up the good work,
  • thanks for all the good work you do,
  • thanks for making it safe to ride Diablo,
  • keep up the good work making Mt. Diablo safer,
  • thanks for the Blind Curves signs and turnouts,
  • good job,
  • thanks for doing this,
  • nice improvement,
  • thanks for supporting cycling,
  • never been better,
  • thanks for your work,
  • thank you,
  • thanks,
  • so grateful for your hard work to save lives,
  • thanks Al,
  • excellent,
  • thank you for all you guys do & happy new year,
  • thanks for your work,
  • thank you,
  • great job in reducing bicycles accidents,
  • this is great thank you very much,
  • thanks for helping the Mt. safer,
  • keep up the good work,
  • thank you for everything,
  • thank you for the help in keeping ALL people safe,
  • thank you

Suggestions (8)

  • hand out leaflets at bottom of South Gate,
  • murder charges for violators,
  • would love phone# for Park Ranger
  • bike only and car only days,
  • would love to see Bike only hours in the summer from 6:00am
  • although I’m a cyclist I get more aggravated by cyclists who won’t pull as far as possible to the right to let cars pass cars and bikes need to both cooperate,
  • car free day would be great,
  • open the park before 8 for cyclists,

Other Comments (4)

  • really love this mountain,
  • most popular climb in the western U.S.A.,
  • only person I saw driving unsafely was a Park Ranger truck tailgating a cyclist downhill around a blind curve driver had a crew cut looked ex-military,
  • first time car drivers don’t know about danger of descending cyclists and over compensate passing ascending cyclist,

Please go to mountdiablocyclists.org for more information, documents and videos.