A Cautionary Tale

Equipment and On Road Behaviour, Laws and Rules. Cycling Promotion and Advocacy

Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby queequeg » Sun Jan 08, 2012 11:43 am

human909 wrote:
queequeg wrote:
TheBrewer wrote:.......
I appreciate the lane is for cyclists but 45kph down a bike lane past gridlocked traffic, I think there is the potential for a lot of harm to come your way, even if you're 100% in the right.

As much as cars need to beware etc etc these guys closed 6-8 car lengths in a second or so and but for my reflexes and awareness would have gone straight over my hood.
......
It is always the responsibility of the person entering the traffic flow to ensure that ALL lanes are clear before moving....



While legally queegueg is right. It is just plain dangerous to have a large speed differential to the traffic next to you when there is lots of traffic. This true for cars, bikes buses or cars. Racing past stopped cars in a car is damn dangerous too. Likewise riding in a bike traffic lane on a multi lane 80kph road with heavy traffic is down right deadly.

Some things come down to behaving safely and sensibly. Even if you are behaving legally.


I certainly don't see any of the buses/taxis in the same lane slowing down. The whole point of the bus lanes is to allow the buses to flow while the other traffic is gridlocked!
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by BNA » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:32 pm

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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby wizardhat » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:32 pm

It's threads like these that make me feel justified in turning on my lights to the flash setting in the morning and afternoon despite it technically being bright enough to easily see me. This is purely anecdotal, but I think I am seen more often because of it, particularly when I'm riding into the sun.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby zero » Thu Jan 12, 2012 1:52 pm

queequeg wrote:I certainly don't see any of the buses/taxis in the same lane slowing down. The whole point of the bus lanes is to allow the buses to flow while the other traffic is gridlocked!


Flowing at 25 is fine compared to flowing at 0. Also your speed can vary a lot depending on your knowledge of why the cars are grid locked (and thus the likelyhood of someone changing lanes on you), where the cross streets and driveways are, and whether the 2 directions on the road are continuously physically divided or not, and whether or not the intersections have controlled right turns or not.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby twizzle » Thu Jan 12, 2012 2:10 pm

wizardhat wrote:It's threads like these that make me feel justified in turning on my lights to the flash setting in the morning and afternoon despite it technically being bright enough to easily see me. This is purely anecdotal, but I think I am seen more often because of it, particularly when I'm riding into the sun.


+1, I've driven my car along a road I ride regularly, bicycles without lights are almost invisible.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby KonaCommuter » Thu Jan 12, 2012 5:45 pm

Since I started commuting by bike to and from work I’ve taken particular notice of other riders in order to learn.

One thing I have noticed is that flashing lights during the day attracts attention far more than without. A bloke at my work remarked to me that he saw my flashing headlight from 500 meters (distance worked out from google maps) away during the early (but light) morning.

A new bike commuter at work has flashing lights that are frankly pathetic. He also wears dark clothes and rides a dark bike in the early morning. He’s an accident waiting to happen. I have tried to talk to him about it on more than one occasion but to no avail due to the language barrier.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby DaveOZ » Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:32 pm

KonaCommuter wrote:A new bike commuter at work has flashing lights that are frankly pathetic. He also wears dark clothes and rides a dark bike in the early morning. He’s an accident waiting to happen. I have tried to talk to him about it on more than one occasion but to no avail due to the language barrier.


He's called a Ninja around here. Buy him a light, they are cheap and it might save his life.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby ft_critical » Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:37 am

Braking fail. I was riding back up the 5% grade that is Roseville Bridge, heading North after my morning group ride. This is a shared footpath. On one side is a heavy gauge wire fence with lantana growing on it and on the other is a mid-calf height guard rail protecting the cars from running off the embankment beyond the wire fence. The path is only a footpath wide – narrow.
A mountain biker on a very nice rig is descending towards me. I call ‘heads up’ at 25m, he starts braking at 15m and passes me. I hear his wheel lock, then I hear the metallic clang as he hits one of the metal light poles wedged between the guardrail and path. I look back and to my horror, he has flipped over the rail and is rolling around in the inside lane on the roadway. This is an 80kmh zone, mostly done at 90kmh, and it is after a sweeping corner off the bridge. Suffice to say, very dangerous. Luckily it was only 0715 and traffic was light so he was able to scramble over the railing before the next wave of cars.
I posted this in the descending thread, but it is worth reiterating here. You must learn the limitations of your bike when braking on different grades. Here I think two factors contributed to his crash; he pulled on both brakes locked the back and stared right at the obstacle that he was scared of, the pole. And, quite naturally, that is right where he went. He should have released the front and looked at where he wanted to go. Also he should not have traveled down that narrow descent at a speed beyond his control. I have seen very many people overestimate their own ability and that of their bikes when descending.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby philip » Tue Jan 17, 2012 9:28 am

ft_critical wrote:he has flipped over the rail and is rolling around in the inside lane on the roadway.

:shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: holy moly, that would be a brown pants moment. Lucky guy. Going over that rail must've been quite a feat.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby il padrone » Tue Jan 17, 2012 9:40 am

wizardhat wrote:It's threads like these that make me feel justified in turning on my lights to the flash setting in the morning and afternoon despite it technically being bright enough to easily see me. This is purely anecdotal, but I think I am seen more often because of it, particularly when I'm riding into the sun.

I have been running my dynohub lights full-time for the past 10 months. I have frequently noticed, in day-time, drivers stopping and giving way, when doing a right turn or when pulling out from streets on the left. They do this at a distance where I thought they had plenty of space to make their turn.

What I believe is happening is that my bright, non-flashing headlight makes them think I am a motorbike or scooter so they stop to give way. By the time they realise I'm on a bike and travelling slower they have lost enough space so they just give way. I'll continue to run the lights in daytime for greatly enhanced visibilty. Friends have told me that they are very bright and stand out over a long distance. Watching a friend riding towards me in Tassie, his Busch & Muller IQ Cyo headlight was just as bright as the headlight of a motorbike that was riding along the same road passing him (and brightly visible at over one km distance). The great value of a dynohub is that the drag from running the lights is miniscule - certainly unnoticeable when riding along.

Peter White Cycles wrote:One way to think about the added drag of the Schmidt is to compare it to climbing a hill. Well, a really not so very steep hill. When the light is turned off, the drag from the hub is roughly equivalent to climbing one foot every for mile you ride. With the light turned on, it's about the same as climbing five feet every mile. That's why (in the daytime) you can't really tell that it's on, except at very low speeds (2 - 3 mph) when you can feel the hub pulse just a bit.
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby Parrott » Sun Jan 22, 2012 8:48 pm

Hi Pete have you got any info on where to get a schmidt dymo hub and wheel? I am sold on them from your description there. I believe it is a purchase I can get past my wife considering the safety factor of having lights that run full time and dont run flat
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby il padrone » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:17 pm

I bought mine from starbike in Germany, however it seems they no longer show Schmidt hubs on their website :? . They are also available from bike24 and SJS. If you want to get them locally, St Kilda Cycles and Cheeky Monkey will stock them. The Australian price will be $70-80 more than buying from Europe.
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby Parrott » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:23 pm

il padrone wrote:I bought mine from starbike in Germany, however it seems they no longer show Schmidt hubs on their website :? . They are also available from bike24 and SJS. If you want to get them locally, St Kilda Cycles and Cheeky Monkey will stock them. The Australian price will be $70-80 more than buying from Europe.


Thanks i'll have a look. I pm'd you also in case you didn't read this thread again. Disregard if you like, cheers for the quick response.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby Benz250 » Mon Jan 23, 2012 9:03 am

I have to agree that roundabouts are bad news. I was hit a few years back early sunday morning on a quite street going through a roundabout, i was on the roundabout and the small RAV4 came up on my left obviously didn't look right and drove slowly straight through. Luckly that i could tell she was going to hit me so was able to put maximum distance between us, still clipped my back wheel, knocking me off the bike, walked away without a scratch as a saw it coming and was ready for it, bike not so lucky, was written off with a bent frame!
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby trailgumby » Wed Jan 25, 2012 5:44 pm

ft_critical wrote:Braking fail. I was riding back up the 5% grade that is Roseville Bridge, heading North after my morning group ride. This is a shared footpath. On one side is a heavy gauge wire fence with lantana growing on it and on the other is a mid-calf height guard rail protecting the cars from running off the embankment beyond the wire fence. The path is only a footpath wide – narrow.
A mountain biker on a very nice rig is descending towards me. I call ‘heads up’ at 25m, he starts braking at 15m and passes me. I hear his wheel lock, then I hear the metallic clang as he hits one of the metal light poles wedged between the guardrail and path. I look back and to my horror, he has flipped over the rail and is rolling around in the inside lane on the roadway. This is an 80kmh zone, mostly done at 90kmh, and it is after a sweeping corner off the bridge. Suffice to say, very dangerous. Luckily it was only 0715 and traffic was light so he was able to scramble over the railing before the next wave of cars.
I posted this in the descending thread, but it is worth reiterating here. You must learn the limitations of your bike when braking on different grades. Here I think two factors contributed to his crash; he pulled on both brakes locked the back and stared right at the obstacle that he was scared of, the pole. And, quite naturally, that is right where he went. He should have released the front and looked at where he wanted to go. Also he should not have traveled down that narrow descent at a speed beyond his control. I have seen very many people overestimate their own ability and that of their bikes when descending.

Know that bit well. Am on hyper-alert rounding that right descending corner as it is virtually blind, and the pavement is frankly very dangerous, as are the sharp-edged armco fencing stanchions ... although I note since I complained they have done *some* repair work to the pavement and it has improved somewhat. While other riders coming up the hill are rare, they do appear fro time to time so you simply can't assume there is no-one coming.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby ft_critical » Wed Jan 25, 2012 8:25 pm

trailgumby wrote:Know that bit well. Am on hyper-alert rounding that right descending corner as it is virtually blind, and the pavement is frankly very dangerous, as are the sharp-edged armco fencing stanchions ...


Yep that is where it was exactly. I was actually passed by this tradie on a mtn bike (didn’t think they existed, but they ride like they drive) who descended there like a madman - absolutely flat out - and before the recent defoliation. Seriously, some people just don't have consequence management as an innate ability.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby Nobody » Wed Jan 25, 2012 8:57 pm

ft_critical wrote:Seriously, some people just don't have consequence management as an innate ability.
I heard that this ability doesn't mature properly until 25 years of age. I can attest to this myself. Did most of my more serious crashes before 25.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby il padrone » Thu Jan 26, 2012 4:45 pm

Nobody wrote:
ft_critical wrote:Seriously, some people just don't have consequence management as an innate ability.
I heard that this ability doesn't mature properly until 25 years of age. I can attest to this myself. Did most of my more serious crashes before 25.

Hmm.....

Wondering what to make of my serious crashes - most occurred after the age of 40 :wink: :?
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby PawPaw » Thu Jan 26, 2012 7:57 pm

GraemeL wrote:I posted about this awhile ago. I saw a program on tv called test your brain, it was about how the brain works and what we see and don't see. I believe most people just don't see you even though they might be looking right at you, this is because they are conditioned to look for larger vehicles.

Graeme


I totally agree with this. When driving, I nearly hit a cyclist on a roundabout dressed totally in black coming from my right out from underneath an overpass in the mid afternoon. So his clothes didn't help, but I also had the light contrast, and possibly the right hand front pillar of the car may have temporarily obscured him.

In any event, I think motorists do not pay as much attention at roundabouts as intersections. Their attention is more on not having to wash off speed. They want to avoid stopping, so do not look to their right or anywhere for as long as otherwise; and they are more inclined to roll through and do not look twice.

When I was at school as a pedestrian, and later learning to drive, before crossing the road or entering an intersection, I was taught to "look to the right, then look to the left, then look to the right again". I doubt drivers or pedestrians get taught that anymore. They look once each way, then go.
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Re: A Cautionary Tale

Postby il padrone » Thu Jan 26, 2012 8:35 pm

Your test for today......

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSQJP40PcGI&feature=player_detailpage[/youtube]
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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