open topic, for anything cycling related.
(happy for the debate to continue, just don't have the time and passion to get stuck into this one)
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I guess this is similar to using illegal recreational drugs. Authorities have been trying with little success over several decades to stamp it out so we should just make them legal...
I have no idea whether you are being sarcastic here or not. As far as drugs go there most certainly is a move towards legalising them. I would agree with this more to help stamp out the tens (hundreds?) of thousands of homicides every year due to the illegal drug trade.
Back to red lights. I am not arguing that going through red lights should be legal. (Though the Paris experience certainly is an eye opener.) But a black&white attitude is clearly not constructive.
It truly is embarrassing for us all when you have a dozen cars/bikes/pedestrians all waiting at an intersection in a 50kmh limit area with no traffic for 200m on the green light, all waiting at a red light... why? Because the light said so?
If that situation is not up for discussion, then I don't know why they are bothering with carbon taxes and welfare and police etc etc... because if that is the best that a dozen allegedly intelligent human beings can manage, then we might as well give up as a species. Any vaguely objective analysis of the situation will result in the assessment that the light is inappropriate, the laws around the light are inappropriate, the sensors are inappropriate, or the people are *&^*^ stupid.
If you are blind and cannot cross without the green man to help, I can understand why you would wait. How many blind people are there in Australia?
If the sensors are inadequate, consider why they haven't improved them already. The cost FAR outweighs the benefits. The fact that our traffic controls don't actually real time anticipate oncoming traffic, so the flow of 50-80kmh is not maintained (eternal green lights) is ridiculous enough.
People are not all stupid so that leaves us with Fix The Laws. The only reason there is a problem is because a set of rules has made it impossible for intelligent people to determine if there is something to worry about.
I would argue that if you cannot trust people to turn across the oncoming traffic, you should install roundabouts, because that removes the possibility of turning across. Red lights and control issues is about human dignity. NOTHING LESS.
Unfortunately there is a concerted move (at least in VIC) to replace roundabouts and stop signs with traffic lights.
Pedestrians have long since given up paying much attention to these things. As it makes the least sense for pedestrians who also have some of the worse treatment by traffic lights. I would say at least 30% routinely ignore red signals. Next comes bicycles with maybe 10% routinely ignoring red signals.
Our authorities insist that there is a problem, but there is little to no evidence for it. Sure some bicycles and pedestrians do get hit when going against the red but the problem here is stupidity not the fact that they were going against the red. My most recent encounter was a stupid pedestrian who ran against a red light for a tram. He was obscured from view until he was in front of me and I had to to brake considerably in my car. Does anybody really think that stronger enforcement of harmless jaywalking will prevent this type of stupidity?
Oppressing the 99% in order to stop the 1% is not smart governance.
They aren't really car-centric. If they were you wouldn't have all the intersections where at least 1 car will run the red every change.
Which is explained by the fact that some motorists' sense of entitlement knows no bounds. It doesn't mean the timings aren't car-centric; they undoubtedly are.
Clearly no one else took the time to read through your very shallowly thought out rant, because if they did they'd be in stitches too. Never have I come across this sort of trife before. Solid effort champ, you've outdone everyone.
Is it safe to cross against a red light? Of course it is.........but only if you;
Are wide awake
Are feeling clear headed
Don’t suffer from any form of depression
Have no problems in your personal or work life you are thinking about
Are not hung over
Are not feeling tired
Are not in pain
Are not feeling exuberantly happy
It is not raining
It is not twilight
You don’t suffer a handicap that stops you from breaking into a fast sprint
Have 20/20 vision
Bugger......... by my reckoning it would only be safe for about 2% of the population at any given time to cross against the red light.
I think it is a good idea to let cyclists go through the red in certain intersections. However I dont think Australia is ready for it yet. The backlash from the usual anti cycling mob would be enormous. I think we are a few years off introducing legislation like that and making it stick beyond the next election cycle.
I do see "Ignoring red lights is 100% safe" as being a dangerous argument, it is one that we need to be very cautious about pursuing. Clearly Ignoring red lights is not 100% safe and the last thing we need is the same argument to be picked up and run by the car lobby.
to even be allowed behind the wheel of a car in the first place.
Jim, I'm sad you don't see an inherent dignity in humanity, because that is my point. Subjecting yourself to a mindless sign even in conditions of absolute safety is degrading to your dignity. The signs are there to help you and your fellow man. They don't stop accidents. You stop accidents. And you are capable of more than just mindless sign slavery.
I think I have managed to safely cross against a red light while covering at least nine of 75% things at the same time!! Your claim is absurd.
Have you ever seen what happens when traffic lights go out on a major arterial road during peak hour?
Peak hour flow wins.
Traffic lights turn a survival of the fittest into a more equitable flow of traffic. Sure, it is at the expense of our autonomy but I do not see it as impinging on my dignity. I see it as a cost of doing business on the road.
You just take it a bridge to far into make believe la la land, and it's laughable from where I sit.
If nothing else, your post has served to brighten the start of an already awesome Friday.
(If you do a lot of driving in the middle of the night and early hours of the morn when there are SFA road users, then maybe I could see where you're coming from. But that isn't what you've alluded to, you seem to suggest that traffic lights serve no common good for society, and you certainly say that this common good is not in aggregate greater than the dignity that we lose by waiting for a few minutes. You also assume, as GHT made a point of, that all road users are model drivers and driving at peak condition which isn't what we see in practice. In essence, your opinion is short sighted and, while you're entitled to having a short sighted opinion, it's laughable for those of us who consider are able to consider a situation from multiple points of view.)
It may be absurd to you, but there are far too many road users that are suffering some condition that may temporarily affect their judgment.
Therefore I'm happy to partially rely on red lights to at least keep some of them in line.........happy to wait for a green light.....double checking to make sure some idiot is not blasting through the red light facing them, and then safely cross the road.
If the sensor is calibrated to pick up bicycles.
If you know where to position the bike to ensure detection.
If you can actually see where to position the bike because the last lot of roadbuilders installed the loops during construction instead of the cut and lay approach.
There's a few I come across in the CBD that absolutely refuse to acknoweledge my existence (I know how and where to place the bike, Google it). Emails to the appropriate authorities have had form letter replies that "The matter is under investigation". It is at these intersections that I will, with great care trundle through on the red-eventually.
NOTE- I didn't say "RUN". Anybody of any the road using tribes who runs a red needs a slappin'.
Anybody feeling sanctimonious enough to call me an outlaw or idiot and that shooting is the only way to save my soul may leave this thread now. Not Interested.
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
London Boy 29/12/2011
Geez, MB, you're a moderator on here and yet you continually run red lights!
Won't somebody think of the little kiddies?
My bike blog. Long on rumination, rambling and opinion. Why let facts ruin everything?
Yup. The law sometimes proscribes behaviour that is perfectly safe. I can't get worked up about people breaking the law in these circumstances. Nor can I get worked up about the fact that the law isn't perfect. Nor can I be bothered wrapping myself in Liberty's flag every time I find a law personally inconvenient.
back to the article
why does it say this?
Are they saying that if you run a red light on car (and crash) it is more life threatening because two people/ parties will die as opposed to say runing a red light on a bike (and getting hit) where only the rider dies?
Spot on—and when I watch the local commuter types who typically run reds hereabouts, it's done in a way that's far from safe; i.e. wobble across through traffic with no thought to the light pattern, whether oncoming right-turners or traffic entering via a slip lane has a green light etc. Suicide in slow motion.
I do like the 'left turn on red' signs (when the left lane isn't blocked by a car going straight), would like to see that become a blanket rule for bikes.
There are four phases of bicycle commuting; first there's fear, then rage, then self-righteousness and finally, fun.
I assumed that was a poor translation.
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