Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

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beardy
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby beardy » 25 Feb 2015, 10:00pm

These dangers are man made, not natural occurrences.

In America they have incidents where children shoot their parents with their own guns. In the USA they will also see this as just a fact of living with guns and the parents own fault for being careless. Here we realise that such things will happen if you dont control the use of guns.

At the moment it is unthinkable to a car-centric population to restrict motorised traffic to a level which is safe for others. However times change and one day they will look back on this with the same horror we have for sending kids running weaving looms or up chimneys.

In the meantime the sensible way to avoid falling foul of a HGV while on a bike is to stay in a car instead. Which is what most of the population will sensibly continue to do until the situation changes. Because if you get it wrong, not only are you crushed but even fellow cyclists say it is your fault in a way that sounds like you almost deserved it. That sounds like a mugs' game to me when you can sit cosily in your car using your phone etc without any need to fear.
In this incident (it appears) the cyclist chose to be alongside the lorry while it was turning but that probably isnt what normally happens.

reohn2
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby reohn2 » 25 Feb 2015, 11:16pm

beardy wrote:These dangers are man made, not natural occurrences.

In America they have incidents where children shoot their parents with their own guns. In the USA they will also see this as just a fact of living with guns and the parents own fault for being careless. Here we realise that such things will happen if you dont control the use of guns.

At the moment it is unthinkable to a car-centric population to restrict motorised traffic to a level which is safe for others. However times change and one day they will look back on this with the same horror we have for sending kids running weaving looms or up chimneys.

In the meantime the sensible way to avoid falling foul of a HGV while on a bike is to stay in a car instead. Which is what most of the population will sensibly continue to do until the situation changes. Because if you get it wrong, not only are you crushed but even fellow cyclists say it is your fault in a way that sounds like you almost deserved it. That sounds like a mugs' game to me when you can sit cosily in your car using your phone etc without any need to fear.
In this incident (it appears) the cyclist chose to be alongside the lorry while it was turning but that probably isnt what normally happens.


Though many thousands of people cycle everyday without being killed,it's posted on here infinitum how safe cycling is.
The reason people decide to use a motor car for transport instead a bike is manifold,though it's mainly out of convenience.
I think you're right in thinking that a car-centric sees death on the roads a price worth paying for that convenience though won't admit it.
However until utopia is reached,and we can work toward that goal,we have to live in an imperfect world,part of that living if you ride a bicycle on UK roads,or in any other country FTM,is responsibility to yourself and others around you which is also the responsibility of drivers of all vehicles and yes,their's is a greater responsibility,that's without doubt.And unless the law is upheld and enforced effectively people won't adhere to it IMHO.There is no proof of that being the case in this instance as far a the driver is concerned.
The whole problem in this instance isn't that the lorry killed this poor woman,that's without doubt,but what caused it to.
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mjr
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby mjr » 25 Feb 2015, 11:43pm

reohn2 wrote:If the lorry didn't stop should the driver continually keep checking his mirrors and or camera(s) or should his/her focus be to the front of the vehicle,considering there's more chance of pedestrians or other vehicles being in that direction.

The majority of the focus should be to the front but the driver should keep checking around the vehicle, like the Highway Code says (rule 161 "All mirrors should be used effectively throughout your journey. You should use your mirrors frequently so that you always know what is behind and to each side of you..." mainly but also 160 and 211).

It's not all or nothing, all one person's fault or the other. Why is this so hard for some people to accept?

I also agree that the lorry driver should as all drivers should, be vigilant and careful of other road users,however is it reasonable under the present system that at some point the driver after satisfying himself it is safe to carry out the manoeuvre to continue?
There comes a time when the driver has to commit to continuing and after satisfying him/herself it's safe carries on.

By that logic, once the driver's satisfied him/herself there's nothing in front, surely she/he can close his eyes until the manoeuvre is completed? :roll:
If a driver of such a vehicle has made all necessary checks,is conforming to all the rules,is diligent and careful in his/her driving duties and conforming to the letter and spirit of the law,if someone should step out into and under the wheels of their vehicle.
Would it then be the driver who was at fault?

Probably partly and less so than the walker, but Highway Code Rule 205 does say "There is a risk of pedestrians, especially children, stepping unexpectedly into the road. You should drive with the safety of children in mind at a speed suitable for the conditions." That is another bit of driving that seems to get ignored often now, with many motorists happy to blaze past even unsteady/drunk-looking walkers right on the speed limit.

In other words: a driver can't be both as diligent and careful as the Highway Code and run over a pedestrian unless something pretty freaky happens.
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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby [XAP]Bob » 26 Feb 2015, 7:23am

The lorry driver isn't the person most people here are suggesting needs an upgrade.

The system which allows a single person to be monitoring large swathes of environment in multiple locations around a piece of heavy industrial machinery in a public place is the bigger issue.

The talk of a banksmen/co driver isn't there to blame the driver, but to acknowledge that there is simply too much information for a single person to process in a busy urban environment with plenty of untrained people around.

Yes, ideally the lady in question (assuming the reports up thread are true) wouldn't have overtaken, ideally road markings all over the country wouldn't encourage it, but ultimately the movement of the lorry is what killed her - not her ill judged manoeuvre.
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
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reohn2
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby reohn2 » 26 Feb 2015, 8:43am

mjr wrote:The majority of the focus should be to the front but the driver should keep checking around the vehicle, like the Highway Code says (rule 161 "All mirrors should be used effectively throughout your journey. You should use your mirrors frequently so that you always know what is behind and to each side of you..." mainly but also 160 and 211).

It's not all or nothing, all one person's fault or the other. Why is this so hard for some people to accept?

And if the driver's attention is taken by frontal activity what then?
Should s/he stop until all activity has ceased?
If you drive you'll know that it isn't so simple
That's why it's not so hard for some of us to understand that riding up the inside of left turning HGV's is a complete folly,which people mindful of their welbeing don't do!

By that logic, once the driver's satisfied him/herself there's nothing in front, surely she/he can close his eyes until the manoeuvre is completed? :roll:

Please stop being deliberately obtuse and silly in you response to a perfect logical progression of events.
Boot on the other foot,do you when manoeuvring either as a pedestrian,cyclist or driver after satisfying yourself that a manoeuvre is safe to continue with then continue?

......In other words: a driver can't be both as diligent and careful as the Highway Code and run over a pedestrian unless something pretty freaky happens.

Like riding up the inside of their HGV whilst the vehicle is signalling and turning left perhaps?
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reohn2
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby reohn2 » 26 Feb 2015, 8:59am

[XAP]Bob wrote:The lorry driver isn't the person most people here are suggesting needs an upgrade.

The system which allows a single person to be monitoring large swathes of environment in multiple locations around a piece of heavy industrial machinery in a public place is the bigger issue.

The talk of a banksmen/co driver isn't there to blame the driver, but to acknowledge that there is simply too much information for a single person to process in a busy urban environment with plenty of untrained people around.

I agree and see the the argument for a banksman/co-driver as valid,hoewver in the present tense we live.

Yes, ideally the lady in question (assuming the reports up thread are true) wouldn't have overtaken, ideally road markings all over the country wouldn't encourage it, but ultimately the movement of the lorry is what killed her - not her ill judged manoeuvre.

If reports are correct,what killed her was a combination of a moving vehicle making a perfectly logic and well indicated manoeuvre,and the extremely bad judgement of riding where someone of sound judgement wouldn't,yes it was the HGV that dealt the final blow so to speak,but the blow couldn't have been dealt if the cyclist didn't ride where it wasn't safe to do so.
What's up for debate here is whether the HGV driver was wrong to satisfy his/herself if it was save to complete the manoeuvre.
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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby [XAP]Bob » 26 Feb 2015, 9:40am

reohn2 wrote:What's up for debate here is whether the HGV driver was wrong to satisfy his/herself if it was save to complete the manoeuvre.


Oh, I thought we were looking at ways to reduce the impact that these vehicles have on the death toll on our roads. It's massively disproportionate - seemingly even amongst larger vehicles (although I can't lay my hand on stats for that).

Something needs to change - we can't seriously be happy with the number of people being killed. Of course we can be happy that the number is small enough that they all make the news - although they don't make the news nearly enough.


The questions is "what should change". There are a few candidates:
- Large motor vehicles and cyclists should never interact
Complete segregation, which is difficult to do at all, let alone well. And would basically mean banning cycles from the roads. That's really not a good scenario for us or the country as a whole.
Partial segregation suffers from many of the same issues as complete segregation.
Temporal segregation protects people at certain times, paid for some inconvenience of another group of people. This seems like a reasonable move given the apparent bunching of these fatalities in "rush hour" (again I have no stats to hand)

- Cyclists should all be perfectly trained and behaved
This is the classic H&S fallacy. There is a well established model for improving safety, and educating the people being killed is normally at the very bottom of the list of things to do. I've no objection to such training being available and encouraged, but it's not the right focus.

- Drivers should be perfectly trained and behaved
Again, this is virtually the bottom of the H&S process, and is not the correct focus. I don't think that the drivers are aiming to kill, but that the requirements placed on them are above their capacity to handle.

- The large vehicles should be changed
This is a decent option - better mirrors might help drivers see approaching people more easily, skirts help prevent people being dragged under the vehicle. This is a relatively low (capital) cost option, which is likely to help (again I don't have the stats for skirted vs non skirted lorries)

- The operating process should be changed
This is where we admit that one pair of eyeballs can only focus on one place at a time, and so require two of them. There is an ongoing operational cost associated.
An alternative for many deliveries is to use smaller vehicles, reducing the cognitive load on each driver to a sustainable level.

- ???
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

pwa
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby pwa » 26 Feb 2015, 9:58am

Understandably, most of the posts here are trying to deal with a number of related concepts at the same time. I would like to deal with just one. I believe it would be ridiculous to suggest that a large vehicle and its driver are always the cause of injury when in collision with a cyclist or pedestrian. We all know and accept that the physics of such a collision is such that the mass of the large vehicle injures or kills, but we cannot always absolve the cyclist or pedestrian of blame. Let me give an example.

Several years ago I was driving a large minibus along a road in a South Wales valley town with parked cars along one side of the road. There was still enough room for cars to pass. I was on the side with the parked cars. The speed limit was 30mph, but given the circumstances I was driving considerably slower, probably a good bit less than 20mph. I was aware of the potential for complications, so my attention was fully on the road. There was little if any traffic coming the other way, so I was able to stay to the right, about 2 metres from the car doors. Suddenly a Staffordshire Bull Terrier shot out from between two parked cars and in front of my minibus. My foot went immediately for the brake and I stopped in a very short distance, taking just a few seconds to do so. It was too late. The dog went under my front left wheel and was killed. (I found the owner). I played the incident over in my mind for days afterwards, and I could see nothing wrong with the way I drove.

Dogs are not people, and I would have had more warning with a child (taller, visible sooner) so I am not saying that I would have hit a child if that had been what ran out into the road. I think the dog being very low and stealthy was a factor. But looking at the principle, I do not believe I did anything wrong. I believe the "fault" or "blame" was 100% with the dog's owner. In other incidents, where people are hurt or killed by being hit by a vehicle, it can sometimes be the case that the injured or killed "victim" is also responsible if everyone else has done their bit correctly.

beardy
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby beardy » 26 Feb 2015, 10:00am

- Drivers should be perfectly trained and behaved
Again, this is virtually the bottom of the H&S process, and is not the correct focus. I don't think that the drivers are aiming to kill, but that the requirements placed on them are above their capacity to handle.


I have seen three different attitudes to this from a driver's viewpoint.

Mine is that I just dont think I could drive such a vehicle in those conditions with adequate safety.
There is a HGV driver who posted on this forum (Hexhome) who says HGV drivers can drive safely enough and really the blindspot arguments are not acceptable.

Then there is the more typical HGV driver who says I am making the manoeuvre and others had better keep themselves safe because I am not responsible for what I can not see alongside me (sometimes even in front).

As a driver (and motorcyclist) I never go alongside HGVs on traffic roundabouts, I always keep in front or behind as I know they have a hard job keeping in lane. Yet this doesnt extrapolate to another car driver being at fault if they do come alongside a HGV in these circumstances. Yet a cyclist is held to be at fault even by other cyclists.

I thought XAPBob's post above sums it up very well, though I would offer another option. A complete ban on cyclists (or anybody else) filtering on the inside of HGVs and possibly every other motorised vehicle. If the public were capable of dealing with it, this could have the exception for marked mandatory cycle lanes of a significant width, like in some other countries but I dont think our drivers could cope with it.

reohn2
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby reohn2 » 26 Feb 2015, 10:17am

[XAP]Bob wrote:
reohn2 wrote:What's up for debate here is whether the HGV driver was wrong to satisfy his/herself if it was save to complete the manoeuvre.


Oh, I thought we were looking at ways to reduce the impact that these vehicles have on the death toll on our roads. It's massively disproportionate - seemingly even amongst larger vehicles (although I can't lay my hand on stats for that).

Sorry my fault for not latching on to the bigger picture :oops:

Something needs to change - we can't seriously be happy with the number of people being killed. Of course we can be happy that the number is small enough that they all make the news - although they don't make the news nearly enough.

Agreed,though many people are satisfied with status quo,some in high places too IMO,who bleat all the right noises but do nothing to back up those noises.


The questions is "what should change". There are a few candidates:
- Large motor vehicles and cyclists should never interact
Complete segregation, which is difficult to do at all, let alone well. And would basically mean banning cycles from the roads. That's really not a good scenario for us or the country as a whole.
Partial segregation suffers from many of the same issues as complete segregation.
Temporal segregation protects people at certain times, paid for some inconvenience of another group of people. This seems like a reasonable move given the apparent bunching of these fatalities in "rush hour" (again I have no stats to hand)

Total segregation isn't possible,though partial segregation is by removing the bigger vehicles from city and town centres during rush hour or the busiest times ie; between 6am and 7pm,but then we run into that well known British pastime of getting completely legless and wandering about town and city centres in a stupor oblivious to all around them :roll:

- Cyclists should all be perfectly trained and behaved
This is the classic H&S fallacy. There is a well established model for improving safety, and educating the people being killed is normally at the very bottom of the list of things to do. I've no objection to such training being available and encouraged, but it's not the right focus.

There isn''t another country in the world that I'm aware of that requires formal training by law to ride a bicycle(or trike :) ) on the road,so if those other countries can mange it we can too.

- Drivers should be perfectly trained and behaved
Again, this is virtually the bottom of the H&S process, and is not the correct focus. I don't think that the drivers are aiming to kill, but that the requirements placed on them are above their capacity to handle.

Co-drivers in town and city centres would be a good idea,but if those vehicle are only allowed there at 'low risk' times could that in itself be enough not to need a co-driver?


- The large vehicles should be changed
This is a decent option - better mirrors might help drivers see approaching people more easily, skirts help prevent people being dragged under the vehicle. This is a relatively low (capital) cost option, which is likely to help (again I don't have the stats for skirted vs non skirted lorries)

Agreed and many are,but could improvements could still be made.

- The operating process should be changed
This is where we admit that one pair of eyeballs can only focus on one place at a time, and so require two of them. There is an ongoing operational cost associated.
An alternative for many deliveries is to use smaller vehicles, reducing the cognitive load on each driver to a sustainable level.

- ???

A combination of the two could work IMHO,unavoidable heavier HGV's with co-drivers and avoidable HGV's having the loads transferred to smaller vehicles at satellite depots on the outskirts of cities and big towns.

As with anything a combination of tactics could and would make city dwellers and road users,safer and have a better quality of life.
However the UK approach to anything is how much will it cost and is it worth that extra cost?
With that question in mind we begin to delve into the murkiness that is politricks :? and the stupidness that is the Great British public...... ....worm,can,open.....
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AlaninWales
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby AlaninWales » 26 Feb 2015, 10:23am

As [XAP]Bob said above (and repeatedly said by contributors who believe that inclusive cycling should be possible), this is not a 'blame game' - it is far too serious for that. To continue with a situation where large machines are allowed, due to economic decisions, to be operated in a manner which puts people using a public space at risk simply because they are not cognizant of the dangers and limitations of the way those vehicles are operated; is wrong. There are ways of changing this and the blame (and it is blame when such words as "crazy" and "suicidal" are used) being placed on the victim here is IMO disgusting.

Danhopgood: You have misunderstood 'moral equivalence' completely: It is not a legal balancing measure, it is a logical fallacy: In this case it is the logical fallacy of arguing that being in a public space with something that is extremely unlikely to harm others is morally equivalent to operating dangerous machinery in the same public space (particularly machinery which has a proven record of killing people).

Of course in addition to moral fallacies, this thread also shows many Moralistic Fallacy assumptions - that the world is as it should (or must) be. This is easily refuted by looking at examples (in this world) where cities thrive and cyclists ride without exposing the latter to this type of danger.

reohn2
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby reohn2 » 26 Feb 2015, 10:31am

beardy wrote:.......I thought XAPBob's post above sums it up very well, though I would offer another option. A complete ban on cyclists (or anybody else) filtering on the inside of HGVs and possibly every other motorised vehicle. If the public were capable of dealing with it, this could have the exception for marked mandatory cycle lanes of a significant width, like in some other countries but I dont think our drivers could cope with it.

IMO that's a perfectly reasonable rule/law to implement which should also be followed up with a public information schedule,including TV,radio,billboard and any other media available used to reinforce and drive home the message.
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thirdcrank
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby thirdcrank » 26 Feb 2015, 10:37am

It's worth pointing out that if the topics had not been separated - at my request - this thread would have included discussion of the runaway lorry which killed four people including a toddler using a pedestrian crossing in the care of her grandmother. It's dangerous machinery in public near vulnerable people. Different circumstances but similar underlying issues. Expediency rules! OK?

pwa
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby pwa » 26 Feb 2015, 10:45am

Alan (in Wales?)

How would you suggest we improve matters in the nineteenth century roads of Pontycymmer, where the roads are fairly narrow, cars have to park on the street, delivery vehicles have to use the same roads as cyclists and pedestrians. There is a very nice cycle track, but people have to walk or cycle down the streets to get to it. Do you want to go up there and tell people that they cannot have cars any more? Do you suggest deliveries to shops are forbidden, or can only happen after midnight? I'm not sure how you would change things for the better in the real world outside London. We don't start with a clean slate. We start with what we have.

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meic
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Re: Another cyclist death: left-turning lorry

Postby meic » 26 Feb 2015, 10:56am

I was a regular on those roads, doing multidrops from Cardiff and general van deliveries. Those roads were quite memorable as you are driving along permanently trying to squeeze through, dodging mirrors of parked and approaching cars. The state of constant concentration for such precision was quite tiring.

However they are pretty safe for vulnerable road users because I had to keep the speed of my van down and there was no space to try and squeeze past, you had to wait for a passing place.
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