Riding on the road with headphones…

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  • Riding on the road with headphones…
  • Houns
    Member

    Don’t see any problem using earphones whilst riding, i usually wear my Oakley Thumps.
    If you’re on the road riding then it’s obvious there’s gonna be cars around. You should always look over your shoulder before moving over the road to turn etc. And if some twonk doesn’t see you and drives into you how is not wearing headphones going to save you?

    druidh
    Member

    I hate it when cars – and even worse motorbikes – come flashing past me at speed. I much prefer to hear them before I see them.

    Premier Icon wormhole
    Subscriber

    knowing the roads round this area he was probably wandering to find a way round the pot hols?? i ride with ear-phones on the road and off when alone, i find it helps me to ride for longer, faster?? live and let live.

    Premier Icon Jon Taylor
    Subscriber

    coatsey – “QFT” or Quoted for Truth. A very lazy way of saying “I agree with this sentiment”.

    barca
    Member

    I think somebody mentioned it on the first page of this thread but nobody seems to have picked up on it. What about deaf riders? I only ask as I am going deaf. I have an appointment to have my first aid fitted. Just in one ear but the other won’t be far behind and I’m expecting to be profoundly deaf within a few years.
    Am I to stop riding my bike on the roads?

    Premier Icon el_boufador
    Subscriber

    Barca I think your situation is different from ear phoneed riders. In your case you are losing hearing through no chioce of your own. I think the benefits of riding still outweight the risks of not hearing oncoming traffic.

    However, to remove a sense which may save your life, through choice, when road riding is just plain stupid.

    The argument that it should be safe to wear headphones and that cars need to give more room is equally bone-headed. The rights and wrongs of it won’t matter when you’re smashed up in hospital, or worse.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    I did 60 happy kilometers today with headphones in. No helmet either.

    Premier Icon el_boufador
    Subscriber

    Good for you nick, but it’s not the happy Kms that matter. It’s the 1 Km where you get smashed off your bike by a car you didn’t hear.

    Your choice though.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    You’re right, it may happen, it may not. The car that hits me hard enough to do damage, it probably won’t matter if I can hear it, or whether I’m wearing a helmet, everything else; I’ll take my chance.

    RichPenny
    Member

    What action do you perform every time you hear a car approaching el_boufador? I think I’d find it tiresome to move closer to the kerb each time a car passed. So I don’t, I maintain a sensible position whilst wearing headphones. FWIW, I can hear most cars approaching.

    barca
    Member

    Voluntary or involuntary El-B, it’s the same effect.

    coatesy
    Member

    I’m having flashbacks to “the Brittas Empire” TV series here.For those that don’t remember, it ended with the main character being wheelchair-bound after being run down by a lorry whilst crossing the road, however, to him it didn’t matter because he had the green man, and was therefore in the right:)

    RichPenny
    Member

    You’re presuming that it’s unsafe coatsey. What do you do when you hear a car approaching from behind?

    Premier Icon el_boufador
    Subscriber

    Rich,
    Every time I hear a car approaching I make a judgement primarily of it’s speed and the way it’s being driven. For instance have you ever heard a car being chased by the police? You can hear by the way it is being driven that risks are being taken by the driver. That would be my cue to get off the road! To some extent you can also hear the position of a car on the road – are they giving a wide berth or are they cutting it fine?

    Barca, yes effect is the same, I guess possibly worse for you? However for you it isn’t voluntary. I could go and smash the wing mirrors off my car and I could probably still drive OK, but I wouldn’t do it on purpose for obvious reasons (or maybe not so obvious, reading this thread).

    RichPenny
    Member

    Sorry el_boufador but I don’t believe you actually do that, because if you did road riding would be a chore and not a pleasure. I do agree that if there was a police chase behind me I would probably get off the road, but I think I’d hear the sirens and the squealing of tyres. Plus, I’ve not seen that in my 32 years, which would lead me to believe it’s quite rare. I certainly can’t tell if a car is going to pass closely when I don’t have my Ipod with me.

    Premier Icon el_boufador
    Subscriber

    I wouldn’t say it’s a conscious process Rich. Basically if I hear anything out of the ordinary it’ll prompt me to take extra care. As for car chases I’ve seen several in the past few years (Leeds area), and countless dangerous/aggresive drivers.

    I’ll concede that to some extent where you ride does make a difference to the safety of riding with headphones. That said sometimes the quietest lanes are where drivers take most risks…because they are quiet.

    TandemJeremy
    Member

    I certainly listen for and hear cars at any speed I can attain on a bicycle despite being slightly deaf. Its the old active against passive safety debate all over again

    Premier Icon turboferret
    Subscriber

    I use my iPod on my commute to work, but only use the left earphone, so my traffic side ear is free. I’d feel very isolated in a little musical bubble otherwise.

    radoggair
    Member

    I bike everyday with my headphones on( in ear), and volume up loudest(whilst singing). The difference between when i drive and when i bike is when i drive i know i have a curtain of safety around me whereas on a bike you are constantly aware of your surroundings and whats happening. For instance i can guarantee that 10/10 times i’m first away from the lights because you know when there going to change, coming up to junctions i always know whats behind me, beside me and have checked the road i’m about to cross 3 or 4 times before i’m already there. Road riding heightens your senses that motor vehicle drivers can only dream off

    simply_oli_y
    Member

    i’m for headphones while riding. use em all the time,

    as said, to move over everytime a car comes by, or stop at the side of the road/in a laybye (sp) would be an utter pain in the arse. i ride along, at the same sorta distance out wherever i am, in town i’ll be on the outside of a lane, the inside, the middle. wherever i need to be to get where i’m going.
    If in a bunch, i wouldn’t bother singling out, we have as much right to be there as any car. so we cruise along as we need to.

    Premier Icon Nick
    Subscriber

    I listen to my iPod when commuting the 20 miles or so to work, I can always hear cars coming behind, maybe not till they are a bit closer so I regularly look over my shoulder too so I know if anything is behind me.

    It’s not difficult.

    However, even if I didn’t do that I still don’t know what difference wearing headphones or not would make if a car driver was not looking and drove into me, I doubt very much that my hearing would mean I could take defensive action.

    Premier Icon njee20
    Subscriber

    Yep, my argument has always been how can you tell the difference between a car that’s safely going to pass you, and one that’s going to mow you down!? I’d barely get anywhere if I got off the road for every single car I heard coming, what an absurd notion.

    I find that when I occasionally ride without headphones I think I can hear cars when they’re not there, I can hear them better with headphones in, I guess due to the wind noise being blocked out.

    I do agree that you can often tell when a car’s behind anyway, shadows, the way oncoming traffic acts, lights reflected in your front hub, all sorts of things.

    I’ve done thousands of miles with headphones in, and neither of the incidents I’ve had with cars would’ve been any different without headphones.

    Riders (or car drivers or any other road user!) who swerve all over the road deserve to be mown down, irrespective of whether they can hear or not, it’s natural selection. I just ride in a sensible position on the road all the time!

    I think el_boufador you either ride very very slowly, have the hearing of a bat, or are talking sh1t about your ability to judge the speed/urgency/lane position of an approaching car!

    jumping_flea
    Member

    I was wearing headphones when I got knocked off my bike years ago.
    wouldn’t have made any difference if I was or not – I heard the motorbike coming anyway, still wasn’t much I could have done about it as he was driving like a ****t

    Luckly I’m still here, and he came out worse because his bike was in bits.
    Would still wear headphone, that motor vehicle, if driven badly, will hit you anyway – unless you are going to pull over and stop every time you hear something behind you.

    FuzzyWuzzy
    Member

    This old debate again :p I usually have earphones in when solo on the road bike (and turned up pretty loud to overcome wind noise). The thing is I ride safely, as in as close to the side of the road as I safely can. I’ve also learnt to ride my bike so I don’t weave about all over the shop. Being able to hear an approaching car doesn’t make me ride differently, in fact hearing some boy racer or whatever coming up behind you is more likely to make you tense up and weave than if you’re oblivious and just stay relaxed.
    Do you get off the bike and stand on the grass verge if you hear a car coming up behind you? I don’t so why the frick do I need to care?

    If I was commuting in heavy traffic it would be a different story, I would want to hear cars behind as you’re riding in traffic and the extra awareness can be a benefit but on relatively quiet country lanes (where I do my road training) I see no benefit. Same as during winter I’ll wear a thermal headband or skull cap which covers the ears and greatly reduces my hearing.

    druidh
    Member

    FuzzyWuzzy – Member

    This old debate again :p I usually have earphones in when solo on the road bike (and turned up pretty loud to overcome wind noise). The thing is I ride safely, as in as close to the side of the road as I safely can.

    That’s not my definition of safe riding. I prefer to sit about 1/3rd of the way out – and move nearer the centre line when approaching junctions etc on the left.

    Being able to hear an approaching car doesn’t make me ride differently, in fact hearing some boy racer or whatever coming up behind you is more likely to make you tense up and weave than if you’re oblivious and just stay relaxed.
    Do you get off the bike and stand on the grass verge if you hear a car coming up behind you?

    Maybe it’s just me, but it’s not about stopping when you hear something. Suddenly seeing a fast car/motorbike appear in my 3 o’clock gives me the willies. I can see the point that hearing the car that’s about to hit you isn’t gonna make any difference to your injuries though.

    Hmmm. Perhaps I should give the earphones thing another try.

    owenfackrell
    Member

    It is a question of getting the volume right. I have mine set so that i can still here it fine but can here traffic above it. In fact the wind noise above 25mph drowns out everything. I use mine only when commuting and in heavy traffic and can still sense that cars around me. The only time car/buses/trucks etc make me jump is when i have driffted off in to my own world which happens regardles if i have headphones in or not.

Viewing 26 posts - 41 through 66 (of 66 total)

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