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Bicycle, Auto 'Pinch-Point' Remedied

April 30, 2011


A Computational Research Division employee has been recognized with a SPOT Award for the best CS Safety Suggestion or Near Miss for January-April, 2011: Dan Martin reported a dangerous situation for cyclists heading up Cyclotron Road. The mid-road "pedestrian crossing" sign in a pedestrian crosswalk created a "pinch point" for vehicles passing cyclists. Drivers would try to squeeze back to the right side of the road, impacting cyclists, in order to get past the sign.

A "pedestrian crossing" sign had been installed in the crosswalk located between the Blackberry Gate and Building 65 to get drivers to stop for pedestrians, but had the unintended consequence of making it difficult for vehicles to pass cyclists traveling uphill. One driver even pulled all the way into the oncoming traffic lane, on this blind curve, in order to avoid hitting the sign.

Efforts to have the pedestrian crossing sign removed paid off when Facilities announced removal of the sign on June 8, 2011. This makes the Lab safer for both cyclists and drivers.

About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) Computing Sciences Area provides the computing and networking resources and expertise critical to advancing Department of Energy Office of Science (DOE-SC) research missions: developing new energy sources, improving energy efficiency, developing new materials, and increasing our understanding of ourselves, our world and our universe.

ESnet, the Energy Sciences Network, provides the high-bandwidth, reliable connections that link scientists at 40 DOE research sites to each other and to experimental facilities and supercomputing centers around the country. The National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) powers the discoveries of 7,000-plus scientists at national laboratories and universities, including those at Berkeley Lab's Computational Research Division (CRD). NERSC and ESnet are both Department of Energy Office of Science National User Facilities. The Computational Research Division (CRD) conducts research and development in mathematical modeling and simulation, algorithm design, data storage, management and analysis, computer system architecture and high-performance software implementation. NERSC and ESnet are Department of Energy Office of Science User Facilities.

Berkeley Lab addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the DOE’s Office of Science.

The DOE Office of Science is the United States' single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.