Cycling with earphones in

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
pete75
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby pete75 » 29 Jun 2015, 8:42pm

Psamathe wrote:
pete75 wrote:I sometimes use ear phones - audiobooks not music and can hear vehicles coming up behind anyway, suppose it depends what volume you use.

I don't always hear cars coming up behind me anyway (without headphones). In narrow country single track lanes, some cars are responsible and if they get to you just after a sharp bend they are slow and quiet and on a few occasions I spot them in my mirror rather than hear them.

Ian


I do most of my riding in Lincolnshire and you don't get drivers like that here. Most using country lanes are used to driving on them and travel at some speed. Apparently the county has proudly held the record for the highest death rates on rural roads for years. Road Safety pah that''s for them namby pamby townies... :roll:

DurableAce
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby DurableAce » 18 Aug 2015, 5:53pm

Surely the argument is to give yourself the best chance of benefitting from your sense of hearing to contribute to keeping yourself safe. Why intentionally block one sense off, whether you think you can't sometimes hear cars or not?

In my club, we (sadly) had to go to the extent of explicitly banning earphones on rides in the interests of everyone's safety when a few started turning up for rides wanting to listen to their tunes at the same time. I despair!

pete75
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby pete75 » 18 Aug 2015, 7:49pm

This subject ought to be dealt with in the same way as the helmet "debate".......

Bicycler
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby Bicycler » 18 Aug 2015, 7:52pm

Group riding's a tad different though. It's also meant to be a social activity so I can't see why somebody would want to isolate themselves like that :roll:

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Lance Dopestrong
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby Lance Dopestrong » 18 Aug 2015, 8:05pm

DurableAce wrote:In my club, we (sadly) had to go to the extent of explicitly banning earphones on rides in the interests of everyone's safety when a few started turning up for rides wanting to listen to their tunes at the same time. I despair!


Research in America has demonstrated that rider with headphones in still can hear more ambient noise than a car driver with the windows up. That being the case do you also ban riders from turning up in their cars with the bikes on the roof?

This is one of those cases where 'common sense' tells us that it must be dangerous, but what little research has been done has failed to support that.

And no I don't wear them (I suffer with BPPV so shoving anything in my ear is to be avoided), but I hold the position that such actions should be driven by evidence, and at the moment the few attempts that have been made to substantiate the dangers of such an activity have failed to do so.
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Brucey
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby Brucey » 18 Aug 2015, 8:41pm

Lance Dopestrong wrote:
DurableAce wrote:In my club, we (sadly) had to go to the extent of explicitly banning earphones on rides in the interests of everyone's safety when a few started turning up for rides wanting to listen to their tunes at the same time. I despair!


Research in America has demonstrated that rider with headphones in still can hear more ambient noise than a car driver with the windows up....


so what? It is a completely different thing.

I wouldn't ride on a group ride with earphone-wearing muppets there, no way.

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Freddie
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby Freddie » 18 Aug 2015, 9:31pm

It still somewhat staggers me that people will to do this. Some time ago I saw a young man cycling round a corner with a bus driver dangerously close to his rear wheel, looking for a space (that did not exist) to overtake. The guy on the bike had no clue the bus was even there, the music in his headphones too loud to hear the bus right on his rear wheel. The cyclists negligent behaviour and the bus drivers dangerous behaviour nearly saw him under the wheels of that bus. It is impossible to take evasive action, if you are unaware there is something you need to evade.

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TrevA
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby TrevA » 18 Aug 2015, 9:35pm

DurableAce wrote:Surely the argument is to give yourself the best chance of benefitting from your sense of hearing to contribute to keeping yourself safe. Why intentionally block one sense off, whether you think you can't sometimes hear cars or not?



So would you also ban hats which cover the ears? They will impair your hearing too.

I don't cycle with headphones but I do use them as a pedestrian. I can still hear the traffic.
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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 18 Aug 2015, 9:58pm

Hi,
This is a difficult subject to argue / discuss.
I do wear ear phones for most of the time, but have taken to removing one ear (R) on narrow streets, because yes it does cut down your hearing and I want a sooner warning of cars attempting a bad pass, more likely in narrow spaces.

So when you hear a car / whatever coming up behind you how do you judge that it will hit you :?:

For all those poor souls who were injured / killed even, did they know that they were in danger just before the collision because they heard something.
As for as I can tell I have not seen a report yet on well publicised fatal accidents etc, envolving a cyclist who did not see their injurer who was wearing ear phones.

I always cycle alone but if I happen on another cyclist from behind them I normally unplug in case they do communicate and I miss it.
Bad manners to ignore others in a group by isolating yourself yes.

I would never suggest that anyone wear earphones of course its just my choice.
Drivers will try to pass blame onto you if you do wear them of course but they don't normally need any reason to do that.
A bit like helmets yes.
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DurableAce
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby DurableAce » 18 Aug 2015, 10:10pm

Lance Dopestrong wrote:
DurableAce wrote:In my club, we (sadly) had to go to the extent of explicitly banning earphones on rides in the interests of everyone's safety when a few started turning up for rides wanting to listen to their tunes at the same time. I despair!


Research in America has demonstrated that rider with headphones in still can hear more ambient noise than a car driver with the windows up. That being the case do you also ban riders from turning up in their cars with the bikes on the roof?

This is one of those cases where 'common sense' tells us that it must be dangerous, but what little research has been done has failed to support that.

And no I don't wear them (I suffer with BPPV so shoving anything in my ear is to be avoided), but I hold the position that such actions should be driven by evidence, and at the moment the few attempts that have been made to substantiate the dangers of such an activity have failed to do so.


Why is common sense topped by "little research" to the contrary? Does the absence of a positive or negative make the opposite evidentially true? In the absence of evidence that is relevant to cyclists interacting with each other and other road users on the road, I'll trust common sense that gives the rider behind me less impaired hearing and therefore a greater chance of hearing someone shouting a safety warning than not and wiping me out as a result. If there is research out there (not sponsored by Apple :wink: ) which shows that listening to music via earphones doesn't impair a rider's hearing, I'd be very interested to read it.

DurableAce
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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby DurableAce » 18 Aug 2015, 10:16pm

TrevA wrote:
DurableAce wrote:Surely the argument is to give yourself the best chance of benefitting from your sense of hearing to contribute to keeping yourself safe. Why intentionally block one sense off, whether you think you can't sometimes hear cars or not?



So would you also ban hats which cover the ears? They will impair your hearing too.

I don't cycle with headphones but I do use them as a pedestrian. I can still hear the traffic.


I see it as being about context and balance, as is all good risk management. In a group/club ride situation, especially at high speed, which is the type of cycling I'm thinking of, communication being the best it can be is one of the factors most important to everyone's safety. Hats (other forms of ear coverings are available) are necessary for warmth on cold days, for example. Earphones are unnecessary and therefore, in my opinion, to be avoided. They add to risk and do nothing important of benefit to the group to warrant the extra risk the create.

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Re: Cycling with earphones in

Postby rualexander » 19 Aug 2015, 12:25am

Freddie wrote:It still somewhat staggers me that people will to do this. Some time ago I saw a young man cycling round a corner with a bus driver dangerously close to his rear wheel, looking for a space (that did not exist) to overtake. The guy on the bike had no clue the bus was even there, the music in his headphones too loud to hear the bus right on his rear wheel. The cyclists negligent behaviour and the bus drivers dangerous behaviour nearly saw him under the wheels of that bus. It is impossible to take evasive action, if you are unaware there is something you need to evade.

If you took evasive action every time you heard a bus behind you, you wouldn't get very far, the cyclist wasn't negligent. What sort of evasive action was the cyclist meant to take in this instance? How do you know the cyclist didn't know the bus was there? How do you know the music was too loud to hear the bus? How do you know he was listening to music?