“virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

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bovlomov
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“virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby bovlomov » 24 Sep 2018, 9:25am

Article about an endurance cyclist being killed in Australia.

Neither the tone of the article nor the people quoted seem to have any doubt here, that the driver couldn't reasonably have been expected to see what was in the road in front of him.
Police re-creations showed the bike was “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark, with the rear red light on Hall’s bicycle difficult to see.

When he refocused on the road, he saw something briefly but had no time to avoid what he believed was an animal.

No charges have been laid.

Australian law protected him only as far as compelling him to wear a hat. The rest is his fault.

reohn2
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby reohn2 » 24 Sep 2018, 9:52am

From what I've read and understand not just in this case Australia like the UK is a country that doesn't give a stuff for cyclists or cyclists lives.
The driver (19) was an inexperienced P plate driver and the cyclist was riding on the verge,yet it isn't the driver's responsibility to see ahead of him and drive at at reasonable speed to be able to avoid a collision.
Unbelievable! :evil:
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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 24 Sep 2018, 10:12am

Hi,
Was it a flashing rear red light?
Was it at least 1/2 watt? In other words was it bright in todays standards.
Did he have two rear lights?
Did he have reflectors?

I always have the above.
I have several rear facing reflective surfaces.

Even if the driver did nothing wrong / cannot be proved through lack of evidence / witnesses.
You need to do all you can to keep yourself safe and be seen.

RIP

P.S. the law allowing rear red light to flash in this country fixed to bike is stupid as on slow you can look - look away and look again and miss the light.
Lights are very low cost so there is no excuse not to have them, I see 80% of people in the dark in the morning with no lights at all today.
Remember I am a lone night cyclist too.
I think in Holland the drivers are legally more responsible than UK for cyclist even if its a economic cost?
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Mick F
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby Mick F » 24 Sep 2018, 10:18am

NATURAL ANKLING wrote:P.S. the law allowing rear red light to flash in this country fixed to bike is stupid as on slow you can look - look away and look again and miss the light.
Absolutely!

Same with car indicators as the front ones which are supposed to be amber, but frequently disappear into the white headlight cluster with DRLs or headlights on. Too slow in flashing IMHO, and likewise with some rear bike lights as well.
Mick F. Cornwall

reohn2
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby reohn2 » 24 Sep 2018, 10:37am

Did the car have headlights?
Was the driver paying attention to the road?
Did the driver wander onto the verge,if so why?

I've posted this story before:-
Some years ago I was driving on an unlight dual carriageway on a totally dark night with no moonlight.
Some 400 to 500m ahead I thought I saw something faintly red which then seemed to disappear then re-appear.
I slowed a little and flicked on the mainbeam to see a chap on a bike riding toward me on my side of the road,the red light was his fag in his gob that went brighter as he took a drag :shock:.
I took avasive action by overtaking him in the offside lane.
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661-Pete
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby 661-Pete » 24 Sep 2018, 11:10am

I always set my rear light to rapid flashing. Drivers see the light and immediately register the fact: "Cyclist". At least that's my experience. I was even told, once, by someone who said he'd driven past me in the dark, that my flashing rear was a real bonus from his point of view.

This tragic story merely reinforces my opinion that Oz is a very cyclist-unfriendly place. I wouldn't like to cycle there. Am I biased?
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661-Pete
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby 661-Pete » 24 Sep 2018, 11:16am

I'm also thinking of that crash in Arizona earlier this year, where a driverless Uber car struck and killed a cyclist walking across the road. Dashcam footage from the car appears to show the road being poorly lit, and the cyclist almost 'invisible' to the robotic driver.

The reality was somewhat different, however. The road was well-lit and the camera gave a distorted impression of the light level. It was simply down to a faulty robot.

In this latest case we can't put it down to robots, however. Driver error, pure and simple.
Suppose that this room is a lift. The support breaks and down we go with ever-increasing velocity.
Let us pass the time by performing physical experiments...
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mjr
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby mjr » 24 Sep 2018, 11:34am

661-Pete wrote:I always set my rear light to rapid flashing. Drivers see the light and immediately register the fact: "Cyclist". At least that's my experience. I was even told, once, by someone who said he'd driven past me in the dark, that my flashing rear was a real bonus from his point of view.

This tragic story merely reinforces my opinion that Oz is a very cyclist-unfriendly place. I wouldn't like to cycle there. Am I biased?

I am too, then. I've ridden a very quiet bit of NZ South Island and wouldn't much like to again, let alone try a busier part or Australia under its current even-more-anti regime. Bonkers rulings like this reinforce that impression.

I always set my large-surface rear light to solid. Drivers see the light and hopefully have temporary doubt (at least until they're near enough to see the pedal reflectors bobbing) whether I'm a larger and more solid restricted motorcycle that might actually damage their precious car if they hit me, rather than immediately realising "cyclist" that they can close-pass into a blind bend without even lifting their foot off the throttle. :evil:
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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bovlomov
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby bovlomov » 24 Sep 2018, 12:12pm

Bear in mind that this comes from an Australian press source.

Hall was wearing dark clothing, with limited reflective qualities.

Police re-creations showed the bike was “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark, with the rear red light on Hall’s bicycle difficult to see

Bobb had seen a truck parked in an unusual place on the highway

he saw something briefly but had no time to avoid what he believed was an animal

All these are vague and - perhaps deliberately - unquantified. But the intended impression is clear. The driver did nothing wrong, and the cyclist contributed to his own death. It seems to me that such a conclusion should require some clear evidence. None is presented here.

Was the rear light legal? Why was the driver driving further than he could see - especially past the unusually parked lorry? What form did the police recreation take?

But then, it's Australia.

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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby lescargo » 24 Sep 2018, 1:18pm

Would the police give any support if casualty was an unlit pedestrian?

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horizon
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby horizon » 24 Sep 2018, 1:23pm

Fortunately cars these days have powerful headlights that allow drivers to see well ahead in the darkest of conditions almost to the point of daylight standards and indeed blinding oncoming drivers. So my question is, why was he driving in the dark without his headlights on?
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bovlomov
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby bovlomov » 24 Sep 2018, 1:39pm

horizon wrote:So my question is, why was he driving in the dark without his headlights on?

The actual question was 'why wasn't the cyclist sufficiently reflective?'

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horizon
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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby horizon » 24 Sep 2018, 2:38pm

Or indeed why wasn't the cyclist driving the car properly?
I have two doctors, my left leg and my right leg. (G. M. Trevelyan)
PS I always wondered why the YHA HQ was called Trevelyan House. :)

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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby Tangled Metal » 24 Sep 2018, 3:06pm

He had his dipped lights on iirc, coming to a junction so perhaps the right thing to do there.

The cyclist had a red light on. The police reconstruction showed it as insufficient. So many questions around that. Flashing, bright or not, was it obscured by something (number of times I've seen mtb riders with the rear light on the seatpost below the top of the rear wheel so it cannot be seen from behind).

Rear seatpost bag with reflective stripe? Should be one of those retro reflectives so they shine brightly in light. Policeman played it down. Why? Was it in good nick? I know from people at work who have washed their work hiviz vests, those strips do fade or stop working with use or washing.

Basically how much of this story is as people on here think? How much of it is as presented in those proceedings? We don't really know.

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Re: “virtually indistinguishable” in the dark

Postby Syd » 24 Sep 2018, 3:14pm

All complete nonsense from an anti-cycling nation.

Many years ago I was travelling west on the M8 in Scotland towards Inverclyde. This is an unlit section of motorway way with fields on either side. At the time I was travelling at, or possibly slightly in excess, of the 70mph speed limit.

Ahead I saw ‘something red’ in the inside lane and immediately moved out. A second later I passed two deer, one adult the second younger, standing in lane one.

What I had seen was their eyes. This poor cyclist’s rear light would need to have been appallingly bad not to have been seen!