My Trip: Bike on Bus Challenges Smoothed by Drivers

A few weeks ago, I once again had to go to a medical appointment near Washington Square, and put my bike on the bus to get there.

Much to my horror, just before we reached our destination, the driver stopped the bus and told me mike bike was slipping out of the rack! Apparently the clamp that goes over the front wheel had vibrated around and down off my wheel. This might be because the fender on my cruiser keeps me from putting the clamp on past the 12 o’clock position (as I believe is recommended). Has anyone else had this occur? I’ve since started using a bungee cord to secure the clamp in place. I’m very grateful to a very attentive driver for being on the ball and not running over my bike!

On the way back from my appointment, I was frustrated that the first bus to go by already had two bikes on it. 15 minutes later, the next bus has one bike slot open, so I grabbed it.

Unfortunately, along the way back into Portland we passed another rider who wanted to put his bike on the already full rack. The driver did something I have not seen before, and is probably against the rules, but very common sense. He asked those of us with bikes when we were getting off. When I told him I was getting off a few stops later, he let the 3rd bike owner put his bike in the wheel chair area temporarily – very nice!

In the few stops until I got off, I got an earful from rider # 3 about how often he can’t get his bike on the rack because it is full, often on the last bus of the evening, which he said in some cases had required him to get a hotel room in Portland for the night.

TriMet, can we start getting racks that hold three bikes?

And thank you to the two drivers who made what could have been very frustrating experiences work out well (even if the rules got bent).

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