/ Quick bike rant

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pauldr - on 07 Mar 2013
Either get some F#ck#ng lights for your bike, Dont go out in the evening or stop moaning when you get taken out by a car or motorbike..

If you do have a light for the front only get a bloody rear light aswell. i must have past 6 mtb riders the other night with no lights on the back. This was just after nearly taking out a couple of c#cks riding all over the road with no lights.. just out of interest who would be to blame if i hit a cyclist at night if they didnt have any lights on there bike ?
the idiots out with no lights only looked about 15-18 yrs old. Bloody parents should make sure there kids have the right kit on there bikes

Ahhh feel better now

feel free to slate or rant back at me
jamesc88 on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr: +1

Don't be a cnut. Should be simple really.
a lakeland climber on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr:

Agree. Should also apply to motorists. Fully 30% of drivers this morning didn't have any lights on even though it was raining and significantly reduced visibility. Yesterday AM with 50m visibility in fog there were still drivers blundering around without their lights on.

Better?

ALC
Oujmik - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr: As a cyclist, I normally get really angry at anti-bike rants, but in this case I have to agree with you. Riding at night, or in low light, without lights is just stupid. The main culprit for this around me seem to be just random normal looking people. Most of the commuters and racers are all done up in bright clothes and flashy lights and occasionally there's some random wearing black jeans and t shirt just crusing around in the darkness seemingly oblivious to the danger.

You do sometimes alo get MTBers who only normally need to worry about seeing and not being seen who pop out onto the road with a few 1000 lumens of front light, but nothing behind... also daft.
ThunderCat - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Oujmik:
> (In reply to pauldr) As a cyclist, I normally get really angry at anti-bike rants, but in this case I have to agree with you. Riding at night, or in low light, without lights is just stupid. The main culprit for this around me seem to be just random normal looking people. Most of the commuters and racers are all done up in bright clothes and flashy lights and occasionally there's some random wearing black jeans and t shirt just crusing around in the darkness seemingly oblivious to the danger.
>

Couldn't agree more. It seems to be a bit of an urban / street / hardness thing to be dressed from head to toe in black in the middle of the night on a bike, but I see it all the time

When I'm on the bike I'm in high a vis jacket with lights on front and back. I wear black and white high contrast pants, and I'll have reflective strips on my backpack.

If a motorist sees me and thinks "look at that tosser, how ridiculous does he look", then I take comfort in the fact that he's actually seeing me enough to comment...
the sheep - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Oujmik:
Agree completely, I commute on a bike most days and make sure im well lit up. Its asking for trouble if you are not.
the sheep - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to ThunderCat:
Worth while thinking about the side view as well for roundabouts etc, got some highly relectice stickers on the frame of the bike to increase the chances of been spotted. As you say if the driver of a car thinks what does that muppet look like then you have been seen and its job done.
ThunderCat - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to the sheep:

I did see a cyclist last week that had flashing neon bars on the spokes of his wheels....they looked quite snazzy....
pauldr - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to ThunderCat:

And the Damage a bike could do to the underside of my Delica at 40mph could be quite bad..
AlisonSmiles - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr: I suspect I'm so well lit I may be something of a distraction to motorists. But at least they can see me.
Chris the Tall - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to ThunderCat:
> (In reply to the sheep)
>
> I did see a cyclist last week that had flashing neon bars on the spokes of his wheels....they looked quite snazzy....

You don't live in Sheffield do you ?

My wife bought me some of those and I tried them out last week - just went up and down our round to try and demonstrate to her that they weren't really appropriate a)on a mountain bike b) for someone of my age

I was hoping no one had seen me...

ThunderCat - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Chris the Tall:
> (In reply to ThunderCat)
> [...]
>
> You don't live in Sheffield do you ?
>
> My wife bought me some of those and I tried them out last week - just went up and down our round to try and demonstrate to her that they weren't really appropriate a)on a mountain bike b) for someone of my age
>
> I was hoping no one had seen me...

Nah, it was in the middle of Chorlton...

jamesc88 on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr: How do we feel about flashing front lights? Seeing as how they're illegal and all... Really grinds my gears, solid all the way.
andy - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to jamesc88:
> (In reply to pauldr) How do we feel about flashing front lights? Seeing as how they're illegal and all...

They're not illegal - changed in 2009.

kathrync - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to ThunderCat:
> (In reply to the sheep)
>
> I did see a cyclist last week that had flashing neon bars on the spokes of his wheels....they looked quite snazzy....

I have some of those. They are fabulous, especially in city centres where I always worry about how visible I am from the side.

jamesc88 on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to andy: Really? Cool. It's supposed to be better to attract peripheral vision but I'm just not sure. I've seen people get missed because their light was 'off' when someone checked. Scary.
kathrync - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to jamesc88:
> (In reply to andy) Really? Cool. It's supposed to be better to attract peripheral vision but I'm just not sure. I've seen people get missed because their light was 'off' when someone checked. Scary.

I have one of each front and rear for exactly that reason.

My bike does somewhat resemble a particularly garish Christmas display!
Fat Bumbly2 - on 07 Mar 2013
On the subject of lights - could everyone, however big their "engine" learn to use their indicators... Yes they do work on BMWs

Thank you.
jamesc88 on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Fat Bumbly2: BMW's have INDICATORS?
Enty - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr:

When I was back in the UK at Christmas I was gobsmacked by the number of cyclists I saw riding in dark, grim weather quite often at night dressed all in black with no reflection strips at all. Amazing.

E
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balmybaldwin - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Enty:
> (In reply to pauldr)
>
> When I was back in the UK at Christmas I was gobsmacked by the number of cyclists I saw riding in dark, grim weather quite often at night dressed all in black with no reflection strips at all. Amazing.
>
> E


I think this is predominantly a city/town centre thing - because there's streetlights they think they can be seen.

Only time I have ever riden on a road without a rear light was once when out on a mtb night ride where I had forgotten to put it in the car, and was very wary of the 200m ride along the rode needed to link trails.
ChrisJD on 07 Mar 2013

> Only time I have ever ridden on a road without a rear light was once when out on a mtb night ride where I had forgotten to put it in the car, and was very wary of the 200m ride along the rode needed to link trails.

I've done the same a few times out late at night riding, just ride in front of my mate who never forgets his rear light.
balmybaldwin - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to ChrisJD:
>
> [...]
>
> I've done the same a few times out late at night riding, just ride in front of my mate who never forgets his rear light.

Yes, would normally do this, except we had both been plonkers on that day. as it happens we didn't see any cars, but down a dark country lane it's not something I plan to do again
Martin W on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to jamesc88:
> (In reply to Fat Bumbly2) BMW's have INDICATORS?

I believe it's a factory-fit option that the dealers often miss in their eagerness to sell essentials like the "Driver comfort package" (you have to pay extra to be comfortable when driving your BMW - who'd have thought?)
Martin W on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Enty:

> When I was back in the UK at Christmas I was gobsmacked by the number of cyclists I saw riding in dark, grim weather quite often at night dressed all in black with no reflection strips at all. Amazing.

Not long back I was driving along the Meadows in Edinburgh on a typical Scottish winter evening: dark and driech, with door mirrors and side windows covered with a thin film of scotch mist mingled with road spray. Pedalling along in the cycle lane was a guy dressed all in black, and riding a black bike with no lights.

A few hundred metres further on up the road the traffic had slowed, just short of the junction on the left that I wanted to turn in to. Luckily, before I made the turn I remembered the cyclist I'd passed a minute or so earlier. Peering as best I could in my nearside mirror, and then checking over my shoulder, I was just able to see that he was about to sneak up my inside - despite the fact that I was indicating left and within feet of the junction. Lucky for him that I had my wits about me, because he certainly didn't. A less bike-aware driver than I was managing to be that night could easily have made a nasty mess of him.

When I'm out on my own bike I favour the two lights at each end, one flashing and one solid. And not those ridiculous, tiny things that run on a button battery that some folks seem to think are all they need. I also have reflective sleeves on the wheel spokes (like these http://www.decathlon.co.uk/reflective-spoke-sticks-id_8191875.html except Lidl and Aldi do them for 1/3 that price when they have their bike "events") to enhance conspicuity from the side, and reflective "stealth" tape at strategic points on the frame. And that's just the bike...
Doug on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Enty:
> (In reply to pauldr)
>
> When I was back in the UK at Christmas I was gobsmacked by the number of cyclists I saw riding in dark, grim weather quite often at night dressed all in black with no reflection strips at all. Amazing.
>
> E

Ridiculous number in Paris as well, on the roads & pavements.
ThunderCat - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Fat Bumbly2:
> On the subject of lights - could everyone, however big their "engine" learn to use their indicators... Yes they do work on BMWs
>
> Thank you.

There seems to be a persistent belief among Audi drivers that their indicators are wired to a small quantity of Semtex and that if they use them, their cars will explode.

This is completely false rumour, but one which seems really hard to dispell
biped - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr:

Imagine what the forums would be like if we all started a new thread called 'car rant' every time we saw a driver,

turn without indicating;
drive while using a phone;
drive in mist or rain with no lights on;
speed past a school;
drive along a single track road too fast;
fiddle about with the sat nav;
drive after 'only' a couple of pints;
drive too close to a cyclist;
driving with his windows and mirrors all misted up;
hog the overtaking lane;
pull out in front of a motorcylist;
in front and going slower than I want;
having the audacity to be on the road in a vehicle that costs less to tax than mine!
etc.
(feel free to add more)


It would crash the site.

FWIW yes it is self evident that anyone cycling with no lights is a Shereen Nanjiani. But even so, get a grip FFS.
ThunderCat - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Stuart Mitchell:
> (In reply to pauldr)
>
> Imagine what the forums would be like if we all started a new thread called 'car rant' every time we saw a driver,
>
> turn without indicating;
> drive while using a phone;
> drive in mist or rain with no lights on;
> speed past a school;
> drive along a single track road too fast;
> fiddle about with the sat nav;
> drive after 'only' a couple of pints;
> drive too close to a cyclist;
> driving with his windows and mirrors all misted up;
> hog the overtaking lane;
> pull out in front of a motorcylist;
> in front and going slower than I want;
> having the audacity to be on the road in a vehicle that costs less to tax than mine!
> etc.


I think you'll find we do...

And Climb on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to jamesc88: Nah course they don't or at least I've never seen them. I know they have arseholes because you can see them in the drivers seat.
biped - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to ThunderCat:

I think I find that you live on an island with one road, no junctions, one car and no cyclists. And one surname in the phone book.
Mikkel - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr:

Around here i see a lot more cars driving around without lights on that bikes.

Both car and cyclists without lights are idiots though.
ThunderCat - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to Stuart Mitchell:
> (In reply to ThunderCat)
>
> I think I find that you live on an island with one road, no junctions, one car and no cyclists. And one surname in the phone book.

Thunder...HO!!!!!!!!!!

jonintights - on 07 Mar 2013
Car drivers seem completely oblivious to the asymmetric risks involved:

Car nudges car - dents, insurance etc

Car nudges bike - bike rider likely killed

Bike has no lights, who is at risk? (the biker rider) and who is taking the risk? (the bike rider)

Car driver drives like an arsehole / idiot who takes the risk? (car driver) who is at risk (everyone else)?

These asymmetries in the risk and consequence place a moral onus on car drivers to behave themselves and look after other road users. Very few people are killed and maimed as a result of a bike hitting them.

However, it is a good idea to get lights as an easy way to manage your personal risk.
Bob_the_Builder - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr:

Riding without lights is daft. Scariest cycle I ever did was 1 mile home after some right proper W*nker nicked all the lights off the bikes at the bike rack. I ended up getting off and walking. I don't wear much high vis clothes because I usually commute in my normal street clothes (despite being a lycra clad roadie other times).
Howard J - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
> there is a moral onus on car drivers to behave themselves and look after other road users.

Of course. But as someone pointed out, even a bike-aware driver can be caught out if the cyclist makes himself invisible.

kerry cooper - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr: I saw maybe 3 or 4 guys out on road bikes, pretty expensive ones too, last night on ringinlow road, about 8.30pm with about 3m visabilty. they were wearing black gear. I cannot express how mortified i would be as a driver if i were to hit somebody, but these guys were taking the piss!
ml706 - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr:

I've actually just been knocked off my bike by a driver who opened their door after claiming not to see me.

I was going fairly slow, long sleeve yellow top and a flashing light on the front. The one day I hadn't turned on the lights on my rucksack straps as well!
Swirly - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr: I'm amazed at all these people who see cyclists at night who are dressed in black and have no lights. I don't see any...
BigBrother - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to jamesc88:
> (In reply to andy) Really? Cool. It's supposed to be better to attract peripheral vision but I'm just not sure. I've seen people get missed because their light was 'off' when someone checked. Scary.

The speed most flash at that is extremely unlikely.

I am pretty certain I saw research that flashing lights were more likely to be noticed but it was more difficult to judge their distance.

My pet peeve about car lights when I lived in London was people driving with just their side lights on.
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a lakeland climber on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to BigBrother:

It seems Yorkshire is under attack from super cyclists - http://bit.ly/WNDpTC

ALC
andy - on 07 Mar 2013
In reply to a lakeland climber:
> (In reply to BigBrother)
>
> It seems Yorkshire is under attack from super cyclists - http://bit.ly/WNDpTC
>
> ALC


That must be me! I have personally knocked off several wing mirrors whilst cycling through Embsay at speeds of 40-50mph.

Not sure which "laws" are being flouted though.

He's my councillor - i'll have a word...
Martin W on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:

> These asymmetries in the risk and consequence place a moral onus on car drivers to behave themselves and look after other road users. Very few people are killed and maimed as a result of a bike hitting them.

This argument is void. No-one was ever killed by being run over by a pedestrian, either, but that doesn't mean it's OK to step out in to traffic without looking. Being morally in the right is little help when you're dead.

All that's being suggested is that people take a little effort to help other people treat them with due care. The fact that it's a legal requirement as well may give a little clue as to the basic wisdom of the practice.
a lakeland climber on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to andy:

No doubt you'll be heading to the Ministry of Truth to be "re-educated" by Chief Superintendent Higgins. Naughty boy!

ALC
simondgee - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr:
We can all come up with excuses 'The dog ate my homework' but the real reason most cyclists mainly MTBers (including me) don't have lights on bikes is cos they look uncool during the day so they aren't on there as a matter of course. A rear red weighs about 100g and costs pennies so there isnt a real reason for it not being on the bike all the time. Like wise reflectors ...by law we are required to have a red bike rear reflector and orange pedal reflectors...if your bike is out the shop(as a opposed to a self build) ...it came with these and you took them off cos they look uncool (or the shop sold it to you without pedals as an incomplete bike). If you saw all the bikes on the TDF or the Fort William Down hill with lights fitted we would all follow suit.
jonintights - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to Martin W:

"This argument is void" nope - you've not understood the point, let me explain that one again:

Bike riders have a duty of care to themselves

Car drivers have a duty of care to other road users on account of the risk that they pose

The point is about the asymmetry - cars are dangerous to others, bikes are mainly dangerous to their rider, I cannot see that anyone here is advocating riding without lights.

While it is scary to encounter a badly lit bike when you are driving it is much more scarey and more much common to encounter a badly (or just indifferently) driven care when riding.


Sir Chasm - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights: I think he understood your point, but you're talking rubbish. All road users have a duty of care to all other users, even cyclists.
jonintights - on 08 Mar 2013
I take my lights off during the day because they get nicked or get broken and put them on at night.

Sometimes, very occasionally, I get caught out, stuck at work for longer than I thought, batteries dead, lights nicked or broken and have to ride without. It isn't very pleasant but it is a risk I take on my own behalf and one that doesn't pose (as significant) a threat to others.

One thing that I don't think most kids (and non driving or non riding adults) realise is how poor your senses are when you are in a driving a car (compared to when you are riding). Under these circumstances the riders are taking an uninformed risk.


jonintights - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to Sir Chasm:

Yes everyone has a duty of care to others - but you should act on this proportionately (ot the risk you pose). Since bike riders pose litte risk to car drivers their main duty of care is to themselves, on the other hand car drivers mainly owe a duty of care to others (and I find this lacking in many car drivers).
Sir Chasm - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights: Tricky, I don't know whether you're trolling or stupid. Take your earlier assertion that cyclists don't need lights because only the cyclist is going to get hurt, what about the driver who doesn't see the cyclist and then has to take evasive action? You don't know what the consequences of your actions will be so act responsibly on the roads.
timjones - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
> Car drivers seem completely oblivious to the asymmetric risks involved:
>
> Car nudges car - dents, insurance etc
>
> Car nudges bike - bike rider likely killed
>
> Bike has no lights, who is at risk? (the biker rider) and who is taking the risk? (the bike rider)
>
> Car driver drives like an arsehole / idiot who takes the risk? (car driver) who is at risk (everyone else)?
>
> These asymmetries in the risk and consequence place a moral onus on car drivers to behave themselves and look after other road users. Very few people are killed and maimed as a result of a bike hitting them.
>
> However, it is a good idea to get lights as an easy way to manage your personal risk.

Car swerves to avoid unlit bike, who is at risk and who is at fault?

Have you been an arsehole all your life or did you have to work at it?
simondgee - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
Exactly 'The dog ate my homework'-the only reason your lights can get nicked is cos they have quick release fittings...(which are as easily swapped to star bolt fittings as swapping you saddle qr)....batteries do run out so as a bike rider you and i are just as capable of having useful batteries as we are keeping oil in our cars. It isn't a problem with the bikes or your lights or other people.
And as a driver who is also cyclist (of many years + 3 bikes) I am very bike aware, but the chances and prospects of hitting an unlit bike with no reflectors on the dark lanes where I live are real... as are the alternates of reacting by taking potentially life threatening avoiding action with my son sat in his child seat.
Dave B on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to simondgee:

It won't even be 100g for a rear light. If you're out and about during the day and don't want to take big lights, then the 'safety' lights are only about 15-20g, fit in your pocket or camelbak until needed and cost a couple of quid. They do for those times when you dont have a 'big' light and you need some kind of light. the almost univerally used 2032 BAtteries at 10 for 1 at discount shops and each pair will do an hour or so bright enough to be useful
Red reflective tape down the seat stays and around the seat pin about 1-2 grams each strip.

Personally I go for big lights (well a smart R1 or CAteye LD200 on the back ) and a Hope 1 on the front, but have the back up lights in my bag for failures...


jamesc88 on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to ThunderCat:
> (In reply to Fat Bumbly2)
> There seems to be a persistent belief among Audi drivers that their indicators are wired to a small quantity of Semtex and that if they use them, their cars will explode.

Audi drivers = former BMW drivers, didn't you know that? They just don't realise since they never had indicators before!

>The speed most flash at that is extremely unlikely.
Unlikely but unfortunately not impossible when you add street furniture/peds/trees etc.

>I am pretty certain I saw research that flashing lights were more likely to be noticed but it was more difficult to judge their distance.
I'm pretty sure you did, here's a fighter pilots reasoning; http://www.londoncyclist.co.uk/raf-pilot-teach-cyclists/
jonintights - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:

Not trolling and I didn't say you don't need lights - I actually said "it is a good idea to get lights as an easy way to manage your personal risk."

My point is simply - "cars are more dangerous and drivers therefore have a higher duty of care as a result of the risk they pose"
jamesc88 on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:

Roads are designed for cars - discuss.
jonintights - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to simondgee:

How about driving more slowly on dark country lanes? - this generally makes things safer. You'd reduce your risk of swerving all over the road, losing control of your car and posing a risk to yourself, your son and other road users. Most drivers are very reluctant to slow down and far happier to blame everything under the sun before examining their own driving.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not advocating that people ride without lights, I'm just pointing out the risk of death or injury comes from the cars and their drivers.

Riding without lights poses (mainly) a personal risk, driving indifferently to other people's interests (mainly) risks other people's lives.
Ramblin dave - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
I'm as shouty a cycling advocate as the next man, but you can take that argument as far as you like, can't you?

Life is a lot easier for all road users if everyone behaves in a reasonably sensible and predictable fashion. You could say that drivers should be driving slowly enough to avoid an unlit cyclist with no reflective stuff on a country road on a moonless night, but then you could say that they should drive slowly enough in town to avoid cyclists turning in front of them without warning or you could say that they shouldn't drive anywhere at all in case there's someone coming round a bend on the wrong side of the road...

But in reality, life is a lot safer and easier for everyone if we can all assume that other road users will be behaving with some basic amount of predictability and common sense. And making some effort to be visible if you're going to cycle around after dark is a very basic bit of common sense.
timjones - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
> (In reply to jonintights)
>
> Not trolling and I didn't say you don't need lights - I actually said "it is a good idea to get lights as an easy way to manage your personal risk."
>
> My point is simply - "cars are more dangerous and drivers therefore have a higher duty of care as a result of the risk they pose"

We all have the same "duty of care".

Remove your blinkers and look at what you are saying from a different angle. How can your personal decision to use a more vulnerable mode of transport reduce your responsibilities to other road users?
Ramblin dave - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to timjones:
> (In reply to jonintights)
> [...]
>
> We all have the same "duty of care".

We all have the same duty of care, but discharging that duty of care requires more effort if you've got more potential to cause harm. Because you can do moderately stupid things on a bike and still be very unlikely to seriously harm anyone but yourself (ie and still be respecting your duty of care) whereas if you do moderatlely stupid things in a car, you've got a fair chance of killing someone. If you do moderately stupid things in an HGV you've got an even better chance of killing lots of people, which is part of the reason, AIUI, that there are fairly stringent tests before you can drive one.
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jonintights - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to timjones:

Everyone modulates their duty of care in proportion to the risks they perceive, it is just that a lot of car drivers' perception of the risk is out of kilter with the actual risk (by a big whack).

To put this another way, if I was driving a Sherman laden with unstable high explosives you'd (reasonably) expect me to take more care (because it poses a greater risk to others) so reasonably you'd be happy for me to take less care when driving a car (compared with the tank).

Same argument applies further up and down the risk ladder. For instance I might expect you to take less care (for others' safety) when "driving" your slippers around your sitting room.

Consequently the bike rider does not owe the same duty of care to the car driver as the car driver owes to the bike rider.

Separate to this, the bike rider owes a duty of care to themselves and under this duty they should use lights when appropriate.


Andy from Aberdeen on 08 Mar 2013
Ramblin dave - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
> (In reply to timjones)
>

> Consequently the bike rider does not owe the same duty of care to the car driver as the car driver owes to the bike rider.

As above - I'd say that they both owe each other exactly the same duty of care, it's just that the driver has to work harder to discharge that duty of care because it's a lot easier for them to actually cause serious injury to someone. Particularly if the cyclist is riding with any attempt at self-preservation. Which I know isn't always the case...
timjones - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:

Sorry I think you're talking utter rubbish.

Bike riders have the same duty of care as the rest of us IMO. The fact that you accept a higher level of risk of Uk njury cannot alter your duty of care to others.
jonintights - on 08 Mar 2013
It also strikes me as odd, that here in a climbing website, that arguments about personal and external risk management are so backward.

If we replaced the protagonists in this argument with sport climbers, lead climbers, soloists and trundlers the lines of responsibility would be much clearer and the arguments much better rehearsed.

As soon as cars and bikes enter the equation all this well argued sense goes out of the window - I strongly think that the reason for this is that drivers (on average) have a poor perception of the risks they pose _and_ they are locked in territorial battles for the road (mainly with other car drivers) which get applied to cyclists without modification.

This results in a polarisation of viewpoints between the "Daily Mail" (evil bikers) end of the stick and cyclists end of the stick (evil drivers).

Let me repeat, for clarity, I am pro bike lights and pro drivers taking more care.





jonintights - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to Ramblin dave:

"both owe each other exactly the same duty of care, it's just that the driver has to work harder to discharge that duty of care because it's a lot easier for them to actually cause serious injury to someone"

I think that is a reasonable facsimile of my opinion and I'd add that drivers often don't have a very good idea of the balance of risks they pose.
simondgee - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
Aha you are either troll or a dick? 'Not only did the dog eat your homework it now appears it wasn't even your dog'
Exactly how fast do I drive on the road? How indifferently do I drive? Go ahead tell me.
The only thing we have established asa facts so far is that on occasion you ride without lights because you failed to maintain and manage your bike, (which suggests that of the options above you are free of being called a troll)...f*** knows the state of the indifference to your car and own driving.
jamesc88 on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
> (In reply to Ramblin dave)
> drivers often don't have a very good idea of the balance of risks they pose.

Drivers don't very often kill cyclists. It happens, but not very often.

I'm convinced a lot of the cyclist stick comes from them being scared of it happening to them, which odd's are it isn't, which I'd suggest means they don't cycle at busy times on the road.

Why, when it's 'cyclists' against 'drivers' does everyone get super unsympathetic? I would suggest that very rarely do malicious incidents happen.

Every time a cyclist hits a window, or mirror, or shouts and swears because of some perceived grievance do you think they stop to think that they've just shaken someone up? That driver could have been your mother, or grandmother, or brother, whatever, who didn't know they'd done anything wrong and hadn't hurt anyone doing it.

Likewise drivers who see a cyclist but still decide to pull out, drive a little close, over take and then turn infront. They aren't the ones thinking that their friends or family use a bike to travel and that this cyclist could've been one of them.

Yet if something happened to someone they knew it'd be all sympathy and hugs and hospital visits or, heaven forbid, prison visits and funerals. The issue needn't be who to blame but some indication as to why we don't give a shit about other human beings would be better served.

Remember, every cyclist has a family and every driver too, none of us hatched, we were all born into love of some kind.

(This post either makes me sound like less of a c**t or more of one, I apologise.)
Toby_W on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to simondgee:

You're posting quite a lot of abuse there, not coming across well at all. Disagree yes but this, well it only reflects badly on one person.

Cheers and chill.

Toby
MG - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
> (In reply to jonintights)
>
> Not trolling and I didn't say you don't need lights - I actually said "it is a good idea to get lights as an easy way to manage your personal risk."
>

No. It's a good idea because because it means you won't blight someone's life mentally, financially, professionally and legally when they mow you down through no fault of their own.
balmybaldwin - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to simondgee:
> (In reply to jonintights)
> Exactly 'The dog ate my homework'-the only reason your lights can get nicked is cos they have quick release fittings...(which are as easily swapped to star bolt fittings as swapping you saddle qr)....

Really? I cant think of a set of lights i've seen in the last 10 years that doesn't have a quick release mechanism to remove it from its mount.
simondgee - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to balmybaldwin:
yep you just alter the fixings...never had any lights nicked and have toured around europe and regularly commuted...
timjones - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
> It also strikes me as odd, that here in a climbing website, that arguments about personal and external risk management are so backward.
>
> If we replaced the protagonists in this argument with sport climbers, lead climbers, soloists and trundlers the lines of responsibility would be much clearer and the arguments much better rehearsed.

You appear to be a little confused, all of these people have accepted different levels of risk. My responsibity not to avoid dropping stuff on them does not alter due to the level of risk that they are prepared to embrace.

> As soon as cars and bikes enter the equation all this well argued sense goes out of the window - I strongly think that the reason for this is that drivers (on average) have a poor perception of the risks they pose _and_ they are locked in territorial battles for the road (mainly with other car drivers) which get applied to cyclists without modification.
>
> This results in a polarisation of viewpoints between the "Daily Mail" (evil bikers) end of the stick and cyclists end of the stick (evil drivers).

If you remove your blinkers you will find that cyclists are every bit as likely to fall into your "Daily Mail" camp as non-cyclists are.



Mark Torrance on 08 Mar 2013
So what I get from all this and similar threads is...

When I'm cycling I need to use lights. Because there are some drivers out there who drive in such a way that they are likely to run me over if I don't.

When I'm driving I need to drive in such a way that I'm not going to run over unlit cyclists. Because there are some cyclists out there who don't use lights.

The first is easy. The second needs a bit more thought. But because I neither want to be killed nor to kill, I can't really see any other options. What the bike in front of me, or the car behind me "should" or "shouldn't" be doing is neither here nor there.

Howard J - on 08 Mar 2013
In reply to jonintights:
> (In reply to Ramblin dave)
> I'd add that drivers often don't have a very good idea of the balance of risks they pose.

True. But the same can also be said of cyclists, who often seem unware of the potential they have to cause accidents. Your position seems to be that because the car is going to be the winner in any collision with a bike, it's entirely the driver's responsibility to avoid cyclists. However cyclists are also responsible for themselves. You can't cycle on unlit roads in poor visibility wearing dark clothing and not carrying lights and then say it's all the driver's fault when you get knocked off.
Tricky Dicky - on 13 Mar 2013
In reply to Mark Torrance:
> >
> When I'm cycling I need to use lights. Because there are some drivers out there who drive in such a way that they are likely to run me over if I don't.
>
> When I'm driving I need to drive in such a way that I'm not going to run over unlit cyclists. Because there are some cyclists out there who don't use lights.
>
>

Are you sure that you should be here with such a common sense attitude??

Interestingly, when it was proposed to make bike lights a legal requirement, the CTC (and many cyclists) were opposed to the idea as they felt that it was the drivers responsibility to look out for cyclist rather than the cyclists responsibility to be seen!
New POD - on 13 Mar 2013
In reply to Tricky Dicky:
> (In reply to Mark Torrance)
> [...]
>
> it was the drivers responsibility to look out for cyclist rather than the cyclists responsibility to be seen!

To be honest, if you are are driver, you need to look out for all sorts of hazards that don't have lights, like the curb in the Co-op car park that juts out and will destroy your front suspension, and rip off your sump, but is lit in such a way that it doesn't seem to be there at all.
ti_pin_man - on 13 Mar 2013
unusually I find myself agreeing to the OP this anti cycling post.

I will berate myself many times tonight when I get home. ;)
dazwan on 13 Mar 2013
Just want to give my take on the whole flashing light vs solid thing. I used to work nights and drive home every morning at 4am. Every day on the same stretch of national speed limit road I would only just manage to see the same cyclist with his flashing rear light when he was about 20 yards from me. This was a long 1/2 mile straight and I genuinely wouldn't see him until I got within 20 yards. I don't care what some pilot tells me. I know I can't see flashers as well as solid lights, especially when there are lots of other lights around.

The best lights I've seen are the combi lights that have a solid light and a strobe in the same unit. I will notice the solid at a distance and the strobe is annoying enough to get my attention when I get closer.

One more thing. When are idiots who drift about in the middle of the road going to realise I can't see them when there is a pair of headlights coming towards me? Often I barely miss people in the middle of the road as I can't see them for the dazzle of the car coming in the opposite direction (if you're not sure what I mean, it's the same effect to trying to see what someone looks like when they are shining a torch in your face). Oh and don't get me started on the numpties who drive around with their fog lights on all the time. What gets me is these aren't boy racers, but a lot of the time middle aged men and women!
jonintights - on 22 Mar 2013
Often those idiots drifting out into the road while you are being dazzled by on coming cars are being dazzled by the on coming cars are can't see where they are going.

Until I got a really powerful front light cars coming the other way would <never> dip their headlights and I've ended up in a ditch more than once as a result.

Answer is drive more carefully and always dip you headlights for bikes and pedestrians.
Rog Wilko on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to ThunderCat:
> (In reply to Oujmik)
> [...]
>
> > When I'm on the bike I'm in high a vis jacket with lights on front and back. I wear black and white high contrast pants, and I'll have reflective strips on my backpack.
>
> Full agreement there. You have to remember that cyclists as a breed are very narcissistic and victims of fashion. Black is cool. Being dead is less cool in my opinion.
Rog Wilko on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to Swirly:
> (In reply to pauldr) I'm amazed at all these people who see cyclists at night who are dressed in black and have no lights. I don't see any...

Yeah, it's like the few car drivers who don't put their lights on till it's completely dark. Stand out like a sore thumb, they do.
lee birtwistle - on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr: I passed a cyclist (young lad) the other night - didn't have any lights on and it was close. I had just been to Halfords and bought some cheapo lights for my nephew. I stopped and called this lad over - I think he thought I was going to punch him. I gave hime a bit of a lecture regards no lights or helmet. The supprise on his face when I gave him the lights I had just bought - I even fitted them for him.
I'm soft like that.
mbambi - on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to lee birtwistle: Nice one, give yourself a pat on the back from me!
Toby_W on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to lee birtwistle:

I hope you get some good karma for this. Have a pat on the back from me too, you've lightened my day. :-)

Toby
Chris Harris - on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr:

Three bike rear light fails I've seen recently. Two unwitting, one halfwitted.

Unwitting Fail 1: Nice bright light on the seat post, nothing wrong with that. However, the long tail on the rider's coat covering it up rendered it rather less efffective.

Unwitting Fail 2: Nice bright light on the back of the helmet. Again, nothing wrong with that. However, when you go onto your drops, all it does is illuminate the top of your rucksack.

Halfwit fail: Nice bright light on the diagonal tube that runs from under the seat down to the rear hub. Again, nothing wrong with that. So far so good, but the next step of putting on a full pannier to totally obscure the light scores nul points.
Ramblin dave - on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to Chris Harris:
I saw someone last year with a nice bright front light mounted on his handlebars but inexplicably pointing backwards and up so he was illuminated like a historic building but no light was going forwards...
LastBoyScout on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to ThunderCat:
>
> There seems to be a persistent belief among Audi drivers that their indicators are wired to a small quantity of Semtex and that if they use them, their cars will explode.
>
> This is completely false rumour, but one which seems really hard to dispell

Strange - my wife's Audi seems to indicate every turn and car park space, even when there's nothing around for miles to care where she's going.

Perhaps she got all of Audi's quota of flashes... ;-)
Ridge - on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to Ramblin dave:
> (In reply to Chris Harris)
> I saw someone last year with a nice bright front light mounted on his handlebars but inexplicably pointing backwards and up so he was illuminated like a historic building but no light was going forwards...

Well, he was visible...
Willie Ellerslike on 22 Mar 2013
In reply to pauldr: I been following this thread with interest as I started one about something similar in January. Mostly I got a lot of flack from people saying dont be stupid, black shows up really well. Whats changed?

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