Why wear black?

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
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Cugel
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby Cugel » 22 Dec 2019, 9:36am

Cunobelin wrote:
tim-b wrote:Hi
I have asked this before...
Is having a dark cloured car with a proven increase in accident rate "Darwinism in action"?
Is walking across a Supermarket car park, where risk assessments for staff require HiViz "Darwinism in action"?

No, surrounded by a tonne of metal and all-manner of safety features as compared to 10kg of bike
No, at slow speeds (see the twentys plenty campaign for stats on this)
Regards
tim-b


Thank you, it does not answer the question though.

All that this does is imply that cyclists have to wear HiViz because they are failing to protect themselves. Injuries and deaths due to the same lack of visibility is acceptable for car drivers though

As for Supermarket car parks, the same applies, why when there are formal risk assessments in place, requiring HiViz for pedestrians, should pedestrians not have to wear them. As for comparing the slow speed manoeuvring in car parks with open roads, it is not the same. According to the RAC Insurance, 16 % of damage accident claims occur in car parks. They are far from safe. They were chosen because of the increased danger


For we cyclists the question is: should we find things to make us safe then use them, even if in an ideal world there is no need for such things? Or should we "take a stand" and resist all devices and expectations to deal with the real world as it is in an attempt to force the ideal world into existence?

The choice is complicated by the question: do the various devices provided for cyclists to increase their safety actually work in the world as it is; or do they induce the opposite of the intent by actually increasing the dangers?

Put those questions together, with a few others that are pertinent, and you soon realise the answer to hi-viz or not is impossible to obtain if the intent is to reduce risk whilst cycling. Impossible to get the answer; one way or the other.

This is the nature of reality. Once dynamic factors involved get to three or more, their interactions are impossible (not just difficult) to predict. Impossible. Just ask Maxwell's Daemon.

Cugel

Bonefishblues
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby Bonefishblues » 22 Dec 2019, 9:37am

Cugel - producing a good summary.

fastpedaller
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby fastpedaller » 22 Dec 2019, 10:34am

This discussion reminds me of the only time I saw a 'safety speech' by a journalist in a motoring magazine which I agreed with. I think it was in the 1980's when the writer stated "the worst safety measure added to motor vehicles is the rear fog light" and went on to say that the device merely encourages the following vehicle to travel faster in the belief (conscious or otherwise) that they could see a safe distance ahead. When the inevitable collision occurred all following vehicles were going too fast to stop. The crash in fog of over 100 vehicles on the Isle of Sheppey (ISTR) a few years ago is an example. Any Transport Minister who advocated the abolishment of rear fog lights would be immediately condemned as an idiot and told to leave office for having 'no common sense' :?
The other dangerous 'addition' to vehicle IMHO is the huge A pillars on modern cars (to protect occupants in the unlikely event of car turning over?) which obstruct the drivers view of traffic at junctions/roundabouts. Black/white/flouro makes no difference if the driver isn't looking or has his vision obscured.

gazza_d
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby gazza_d » 22 Dec 2019, 11:17am

fastpedaller wrote:The other dangerous 'addition' to vehicle IMHO is the huge A pillars on modern cars (to protect occupants in the unlikely event of car turning over?) which obstruct the drivers view of traffic at junctions/roundabouts. Black/white/flouro makes no difference if the driver isn't looking or has his vision obscured.


This. We had to buy a replacement car for the wife when her's was crashed into last year. We bought a new shape Micra. the difference in visibility over my 14 yr old Note is incredible (and that has the airbags etc). Pillars are bigger and windows smaller. It's like driving a tank. We're careful anyway and this has slowed us a little at junctions etc whilst we look that bit harder and longer. We're in the minority though it seems. The bloody tactile-free touchscreen controls don;t help. I prefer stuff with buttons I can work by feel

reohn2
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Dec 2019, 11:21am

fastpedaller wrote:.......... Black/white/flouro makes no difference if the driver isn't looking or has his vision obscured.

Quite!
The question then remains,what best to br more visible to the inattentive?
Obviously those that can't see(blind spots)can't see end of.
That said my car has those A pillar obscuring blind spots you mention,I'm aware of them and move my head and whole upper body at times to get a clear view.
As a cyclist I'm forced by reality to do the best I can at making myself visible to all other road users,there's a variety of things I do to try and establish that ideal on the road.
a) ride further out into the road(approx 1metre from the edge of the carriageway) so as to be in a driver's field of vision.
b)ride with a very bright constant front & rear light even in daytime.
c)wear bright clothing(usually hiviz but I also red at times,orange also stands out well too)
d)ride defensively and try as much as possible to anticipate what other road users may do at any given time.
e)always expect the unexpected and don't trust any other road user.
f)accept the simple fact that all other road users(except other cyclists)will come off far,far better than me in the event of a collision,and so avoid collisions at all costs,as I prefer to be alive and healthy than dead or injured and in the right.

Wearing black on the bike is a no,no for me,though I can think of the odd situation where it would stand out more than hiviz.
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Bez
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby Bez » 22 Dec 2019, 11:54am

Wearing black on the bike is a no,no for me


Out of interest, what colour(s) are your trousers/leggings/shorts/tights?

reohn2
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Dec 2019, 12:04pm

Bez wrote:
Wearing black on my upper body the bike is a no,no for me


Out of interest, what colour(s) are your trousers/leggings/shorts/tights?

FIFM :wink: :mrgreen:

PS, I once say a cyclist wearing a yellow legwarmer on the left leg and a red one on the right,jester style,he stood out like the preferbial sore thumb :D
Last edited by reohn2 on 22 Dec 2019, 4:18pm, edited 1 time in total.
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fastpedaller
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby fastpedaller » 22 Dec 2019, 12:44pm

reohn2 wrote:
That said my car has those A pillar obscuring blind spots you mention,I'm aware of them and move my head and whole upper body at times to get a clear view.


I do the same in modern cars. A very poor idea of 'safety' on the car of the designers/manufacturers to think of just minimising the effects of a collision, rather than avoiding it happening at all! Typical of the 'modern mindset' though - there's an 'acceptance' attitude towards 'accidents', crime etc which I don't go along with - maybe I'm getting old :roll:

Mike Sales
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby Mike Sales » 22 Dec 2019, 12:48pm

Because lurid yellow does not flatter my complexion.

Bonefishblues
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby Bonefishblues » 22 Dec 2019, 1:18pm

fastpedaller wrote:
reohn2 wrote:
That said my car has those A pillar obscuring blind spots you mention,I'm aware of them and move my head and whole upper body at times to get a clear view.


I do the same in modern cars. A very poor idea of 'safety' on the car of the designers/manufacturers to think of just minimising the effects of a collision, rather than avoiding it happening at all! Typical of the 'modern mindset' though - there's an 'acceptance' attitude towards 'accidents', crime etc which I don't go along with - maybe I'm getting old :roll:

Modern manufacturers respond to modern EU Regulations. They don't choose to fit tree trunks for A Pillars, I'm sure. The alternative would be to specify high strength materials which would increase cost. I think we're looking at symptom, not cause.

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tykeboy2003
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby tykeboy2003 » 22 Dec 2019, 1:20pm

John Holiday wrote:My morning & evening commute has recently been in dark ,wet & often foggy weather.
I have been surprised by the number of obviously experienced cyclists riding in all black gear.
They are usually using good lighting, but why put yours at greater risk of being inconspicuous by wearing black?
I appreciate that it is a pity that as vulnerable road users ,we need to dress as canaries on a Christmas tree, but you don't see construction workers on roads or railways in black.
Have recently purchased a Provis top and am conscious that drivers have been giving me a wider birth when overtaking.
Stay safe!

The vast majority of Motorcyclists wear black....

Bonefishblues
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby Bonefishblues » 22 Dec 2019, 1:20pm

reohn2 wrote:
Bez wrote:
Wearing black on my upper body the bike is a no,no for me


Out of interest, what colour(s) are your trousers/leggings/shorts/tights?

FIFM :wink: :mrgreen:

PS, I once say a cyclist wearing a yellow leagwarmer on the left leg and a red one on the right,jester style,he stood out like the preferbial spsore thumb :D

Pah, I saw one with a single pannier once. Proper stopping the traffic he was - clearly a crazy who needed the widest of berths :D

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Cunobelin
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby Cunobelin » 22 Dec 2019, 1:37pm

reohn2 wrote:
Bez wrote:
Wearing black on my upper body the bike is a no,no for me


Out of interest, what colour(s) are your trousers/leggings/shorts/tights?

FIFM :wink: :mrgreen:

PS, I once say a cyclist wearing a yellow leagwarmer on the left leg and a red one on the right,jester style,he stood out like the preferbial spsore thumb :D


When younger I used to wear trousers from a climbing company called "Troll"...called "Jesters"

Image

Unavailable for many years, but now relaunched unfortunately one is not as slim as one was 40 years ago!

Bmblbzzz
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby Bmblbzzz » 22 Dec 2019, 1:43pm

Cunobelin wrote:
Bmblbzzz wrote:Best not suggest any of those. Reflective clothing for pedestrians is already legally compulsory in some places. :evil:



In Spain, the "ladies of negotiable virtue" are required to wear Hi Viz

Image

We also have the annual hysteria in the New Forest, Dartmoor demanding that wild animals wear Hi-Viz and even lights!

In Wales, there were even demands that livestock such as sheep and cows should have Hi-Viz, in case they got on to a road!

My favourite though was chickens!

Image

Wow! I was aware of livestock in hi-viz (though not chickens) but the Spanish scenario is new to me. Is it purely a road safety thing, that they're required to wear to reduce the chance of being squashed while standing at the kerb in dark alleys, or does it - as I suspect - have an element of moral judgment?

niggle
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Re: Why wear black?

Postby niggle » 22 Dec 2019, 2:00pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:the Spanish scenario is new to me. Is it purely a road safety thing, that they're required to wear to reduce the chance of being squashed while standing at the kerb in dark alleys, or does it - as I suspect - have an element of moral judgment?

Moral judgement might be the motivation for the requirement, but OTOH it should really help potential customers spot them in said dark alleys and distinguish them from those not in that line of business.