Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

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mjr
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Re: Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

Postby mjr » 13 Dec 2017, 3:38pm

661-Pete wrote:
gaz wrote:Problem two.

I've seen that famous video before - so it wasn't a 'problem' to me any more!

I don't remember seeing that particular one before, but it didn't catch me out. I think that's because my tactic was to watch the balls accelerating/decelerating, not the people (I was expecting they might ask how many passes the group in black made) and the other thing did pass in front of one ball at about 18s, although when looking again, I notice the ball you were told to watch was lobbed high over it.

661-Pete wrote:This video may be of help in refreshing memories of witnesses at the scene of a crime - but I don't see how it helps in persuading motorists to notice cyclists. Motorists should be thinking "there may be a cyclist there" all the time - except when on motorways!

To be fair, that is pretty much the message over the end - the trouble is that they tried too hard to make people not look at the cyclist by misdirecting viewers with a high lob.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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Re: Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

Postby mjr » 13 Dec 2017, 3:50pm

Lesaid wrote:I think it is foolhardy to trust your life to the principle "because I'm required to have 'that' lamp, that's what I'm going to have and it will be enough no matter what, because the government says it is!".

And I think it's obnoxious to keep blaming vulnerable road users rather than accept that I should get a current eyetest.

Lesaid wrote:I also notice that the standard appears to have been set in 1989, and perhaps, what lights were practicable for cyclists given the technology of the day may have played a role in the decision making. If the standard were reviewed today, would the same levels be set?

Probably, because the nature of light and human eyeballs doesn't change that quickly. Also, while the original regulations were 1989, the current "not less than 4 candela" bit comes from a 2005 amendment.

Lesaid wrote:This would be in spite of the fact that there would possibly have been nothing we could have done to avoid that accident, other than drive everywhere at 5 mph, or stay off the roads altogether after dark.

Oh, here we go again! Pity the poor motorists, they can't be expected to drive so they can stop within what they can see to be clear if their eyesight is so defective that they can't see far enough at night(!)

Lesaid wrote:So while such a motorist would probably feel responsible, I think it is quite wrong to blame them for such an accident. The pedestrian in that circumstance has to take some responsibility for being visible! Similar with an unlit or poorly lit cyclist wearing dark clothes and no hi vis. Where you draw the line between 'victim fault' and 'driver fault' however seems to me to be an almost impossible moral question!

And that's the nub of it, the great divide - motorists like me say that bad drivers are to blame if they won't accept the reality that there are sometimes unlit objects on the highway which they must avoid and some may move (whether because they're people or animals, or because they're bins being blown around or whatever), whereas so many motorists now seem to insist it's the fault of the objects or their owners for being unlit/unreflective, especially if they're people. Would people dare to do this for anything else, to say people who get stabbed are to blame for not wearing stab vests, or that rape victims are to blame for not wearing chastity belts?
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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Re: Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

Postby Lesaid » 13 Dec 2017, 4:21pm

mjr wrote: a 2005 amendment.


thanks for the link and the clarification.

mjr wrote: Oh, here we go again! Pity the poor motorists, they can't be expected to drive so they can stop within what they can see to be clear if their eyesight is so defective that they can't see far enough at night(!)

I agree with your implication, if not the pointlessly sarcastic phrasing - subject to the caveat in my previous post. Or do you suggest that motorists (and cyclists) all go back to driving at no faster than a walking pace with someone walking in front waving a red flag, just in case of the unexpected? That is the logical extreme to which you are progressing![/quote]

By the way - I observe cyclists to be just as bad, in general, in analogous situations. I often use a shared cycle/pedestrian route - and frequently see cyclists whanging along past pedestrians with dogs and children without slowing down. I have been pressured by an impatient cyclist behind me on more than one occasion when I slowed down from a cruise to maybe 5 mph to go past pedestrians in a non-intimidating way. At night, much of that route is unlit and still has pedestrians on it (and where care with dazzling lights is very relevant!). A similar kind of situation to the things you're talking about, except here, some (not all) cyclists are the 'dangerous drivers'. In fact, part of that route is owned by a local residents association who have in the past, closed it to cyclists because of exactly that problem. It was reopened again a couple of years ago - but it won't stay open if cyclists don't behave themselves.

But leaving aside all the moralistic stuff - and accept that you consider that the motorist is always responsible for any accident regardless of the circumstances - that is your choice. But are you really going to trust your life to the hope that all motorists out there are as good, attentive and 'perfect' as they ideally should be? There are new drivers, experienced drivers, distracted drivers, elderly drivers. Regardless of where you consider blame might lie, don't you want to stay alive? I'm sure you in fact take a lot more care to stay visible and defensive than your comments imply is necessary!


By the way - did you find that data you were talking about that proves the case about better front lights not improving safety when faced with dazzling traffic around an oncoming cyclist? Would be interesting to take a look if you have.

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Re: Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

Postby Lesaid » 13 Dec 2017, 4:29pm

mjr wrote:
661-Pete wrote:
gaz wrote:Problem two.

I've seen that famous video before - so it wasn't a 'problem' to me any more!

I don't remember seeing that particular one before, but it didn't catch me out. I think that's because my tactic was to watch the balls accelerating/decelerating, not the people (I was expecting they might ask how many passes the group in black made) and the other thing did pass in front of one ball at about 18s, although when looking again, I notice the ball you were told to watch was lobbed high over it.

661-Pete wrote:This video may be of help in refreshing memories of witnesses at the scene of a crime - but I don't see how it helps in persuading motorists to notice cyclists. Motorists should be thinking "there may be a cyclist there" all the time - except when on motorways!

To be fair, that is pretty much the message over the end - the trouble is that they tried too hard to make people not look at the cyclist by misdirecting viewers with a high lob.


If you'd already seen that one - try this. It is a surprising variation on the same theme :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGQmdoK_ZfY

AlaninWales
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Re: Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

Postby AlaninWales » 13 Dec 2017, 4:34pm

Lesaid wrote:
mjr wrote: a 2005 amendment.


thanks for the link and the clarification.

mjr wrote: Oh, here we go again! Pity the poor motorists, they can't be expected to drive so they can stop within what they can see to be clear if their eyesight is so defective that they can't see far enough at night(!)

I agree with your implication, if not the pointlessly sarcastic phrasing - subject to the caveat in my previous post. Or do you suggest that motorists (and cyclists) all go back to driving at no faster than a walking pace with someone walking in front waving a red flag, just in case of the unexpected? That is the logical extreme to which you are progressing!

In circumstances where you are unable to see the road ahead (whether due to the blinding lights of oncoming traffic or indeed due to fog), yes you should proceed at a pace where you can stop in the distance that can be seen to be clear. If that pace is 5mph, then that is the maximum you (and everyone) should be driving at. That others do not comply (and indeed get impatient) is not reason for me (or you) to drive at an unsafe speed. I have already said that (at least) twice recently, this practice has saved me from killing a vulnerable road user. One of them was a pedestrian wearing white woolen mits and a "hi-viz" jacket: I simply could not see her directly in my path, because the lights of an oncoming bus were dazzling me. Had I not stopped, I would have driven into her (I gave her a lift to her village, she asked me whether I had seen her because of her "Hi-Viz" - apparently she thought it made her safe walking the roads :( ).
If you can't see that the road is clear, you slow to a safe pace or stop if necessary. This is basic driving lesson stuff and should not need to be argued for. If you do not do this, you will eventually kill someone.

Lesaid wrote:By the way - I observe cyclists to be just as bad, in general, in analogous situations.
What has the fact that cyclists are as likely as drivers to be stupid and selfish got to do with anything? You were against making this "them and us" earlier, why now introduce it?

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Re: Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

Postby mjr » 13 Dec 2017, 4:49pm

Lesaid wrote:
mjr wrote: Oh, here we go again! Pity the poor motorists, they can't be expected to drive so they can stop within what they can see to be clear if their eyesight is so defective that they can't see far enough at night(!)

I agree with your implication, if not the pointlessly sarcastic phrasing - subject to the caveat in my previous post. Or do you suggest that motorists (and cyclists) all go back to driving at no faster than a walking pace with someone walking in front waving a red flag, just in case of the unexpected? That is the logical extreme to which you are progressing!

That's known as a slippery slope fallacy. There is a middle ground between "walking pace" and too fast for what you can see.

Lesaid wrote:By the way - I observe cyclists to be just as bad, in general, in analogous situations.

Oh sure. There are idiots using all modes of transport. At least the fast cyclists bring less kinetic energy to an impact, although it can still hurt and in rare cases kill.

Lesaid wrote:At night, much of that route is unlit and still has pedestrians on it (and where care with dazzling lights is very relevant!).

And what's your reaction? Is it to slow down to what you can see, or is it to go on the Ramblers forum and plea for walkers to carry good lights and wear reflective coats?

Lesaid wrote:A similar kind of situation to the things you're talking about, except here, some (not all) cyclists are the 'dangerous drivers'. In fact, part of that route is owned by a local residents association who have in the past, closed it to cyclists because of exactly that problem. It was reopened again a couple of years ago - but it won't stay open if cyclists don't behave themselves.

Cool. Can we close the roads where motorists don't behave themselves, please? My village had a house and bus shelter destroyed by a motorist a few years ago - let's close the road to motorists. A neighbouring village seems to have a couple of fatal car crashes a year, but its road is "strategic" so instead of closing it, there's a multi-council campaign that will reward motorists for lethal behaviour with a bigger, faster road.

Lesaid wrote:But leaving aside all the moralistic stuff - and accept that you consider that the motorist is always responsible for any accident regardless of the circumstances

And that one's an Aunt Sally fallacy, twisting and misdescribing my position. I consider the motorist responsible for collisions that they cause by falling below the standard required by the driving licence - you know, such as if they pull out into the path of a legally-lit cyclist.

Lesaid wrote:But are you really going to trust your life to the hope that all motorists out there are as good, attentive and 'perfect' as they ideally should be? There are new drivers, experienced drivers, distracted drivers, elderly drivers. Regardless of where you consider blame might lie, don't you want to stay alive? I'm sure you in fact take a lot more care to stay visible and defensive than your comments imply is necessary!

Defensive yes, but that to me is being as prepared as I can for the "what if"s like "what if that motorist fails to yield?" like I reduced the impact of a collision with a car whose driver failed to yield earlier this year by turning hard left and getting clipped by its wing mirror rather than being scooped onto the bonnet.

But despite your suspicions, I don't do much to "stay visible" beyond using legal lights because my experience is that brighter lights and dressing up in builder chic mainly serves to make cycling more awkward (because you have to replace the lights or put the clothes on each time you get on the bike) and does nothing noticeable to reduce the amount of near-misses and other negative outcomes. The trends over time seem to be brighter lights and more builder chic without any reasonably-attributable reduction in road casualties. When will society stop blaming the victims and try doing stuff that seems to work?

Lesaid wrote:By the way - did you find that data you were talking about that proves the case about better front lights not improving safety when faced with dazzling traffic around an oncoming cyclist? Would be interesting to take a look if you have.

I think everything after "when...." is your words not mine. I may have a search when I have more time, but I spent time today persuading the victim of a road rage assault on National Cycle Route 63 that left them with a big cut to the face to contact the relevant police and suggesting what information to give. Sadly, this is the sort of stuff cycling campaigners seem to be dealing with more and more lately and I think blaming cyclists lights or clothes or road position for motoring offences encourages this sort of entitled attitude from motorists. Motorists are on the roads by licence. Self-powered people are there by right.
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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

Postby [XAP]Bob » 13 Dec 2017, 5:43pm

Lesaid wrote:
mjr wrote: Oh, here we go again! Pity the poor motorists, they can't be expected to drive so they can stop within what they can see to be clear if their eyesight is so defective that they can't see far enough at night(!)

I agree with your implication, if not the pointlessly sarcastic phrasing - subject to the caveat in my previous post. Or do you suggest that motorists (and cyclists) all go back to driving at no faster than a walking pace with someone walking in front waving a red flag, just in case of the unexpected? That is the logical extreme to which you are progressing!



It's not pointlessly sarcastic - it's exactly what Westminster says every day...

The logical extreme is not to have a man with a red flag - it's to remove the licences of those who demonstrate that they are unable to drive within the distance they can see to be clear. That's anyone who is primarily to blame for an "accident" (and there is always at least one).

One week for the first time, two for the second, then four, eight, sixteen.
A retest after each revocation of license (because it isn't a ban, it's revoking a license), as well as general 5 yearly retests.

If every "accident" was dealt with in this way then I'll guarantee that there would be far fewer fatalities, and you might even find that other forms of transport get some investment.
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Re: Near miss on busy road - plea for good lights!!

Postby danhopgood » 14 Dec 2017, 12:56pm

"Westminster" is a collection of politicians who are elected by society to reflect the majority view on what's acceptable behaviour and legislate for behaviour deemed unacceptable.

Sadly, from a vulnerable road user perspective, society has decided that it'll accept road deaths and injuries at more or less their current levels with the car as the preferred mode of transport and it'd rather have more money in its pocket than pay for good quality infrastructure and effective enforcement.