Sometimes we just don't help ourselves. (Bike lights content)
On the way to work this morning, picked up a non cycling colleague just before 6, about 5 miles out of town I spot a white halo type light glow about 1/2 mile up the road. Pitch black but I could see that the light was travelling the same way as me. Get a bit closer and could just make out 3 bikes with powerful, to see with lights, ahead. Only one had a rear light, dim and not flashing, in the middle of the other two.
All 3 in dark clothes, no hi vis, only one rear light. My colleague went absolutely nuts, ranting about bloody cyclists, etc. I couldn’t defend them. These guys were not commuters that had got caught out with flat batteries on the way home, (I’ve been there and done that), they haven’t been out during the day and got caught out by a longer ride or misjudged the time. They’d made a decision to meet up before 6am, in the dark and head out on country roads ill-equipped.
Whether their self preservation gene is defective or it’s Darwinism in action I’m not sure. But like I said I couldn’t defend them to a non cyclist.Posted 4 years agoMSPSubscriber
You spotted them from 1/2 a mile away, and you think your colleague had a valid rant?
FFS get a grip! You should have pointed out to him how far away from which you were able to see them and if he has a problem with doing the same he is too blind to be driving. You also seem to have had plenty of time to spot what lights they did and didn’t have and what clothes they were wearing, all in all they were not **** invisible to anybody.Posted 4 years agoampthillSubscriber
lots of assumptions there
They were visible under these circumstances to a driver who understood what he was seeing with a clear view from a distance. That’s not the same as they would always be visible to a non blind driver is it
Plus i think motorists have a right to expect cyclists to display a red rear light, even if its not completely impossible to see you without a rear light.
On the other hand you don’t have to have a flashing rear light or a high vis jacket.Posted 4 years ago
Ok. Not the best description on my part.
This was at 6:10 this morning. They were heading out of town on a dark, no street lights, country road. They had either just started out, reasonably possible, an even early start, or had been riding all night. There wer not tourers.
The straight bit of road we were on doesn’t stay straight until it hits the next town. It does go round quite a few bends. I approached from behind them. They had one rear light between them.
I could defend them if they were even part way road legal. But I the eyes of Mr Ranty in the passenger seat we’re all the same. Was it my responsibility to make sure I could see them? Or should they take some responsibility for their own self preservation?Posted 4 years agocrazy-legsSubscriber
I waited until I was alongside a cyclist with no lights at all last week and hit the horn. Proper shat himself
Would you be using the 😆 icon if he have swerved in terror at the sudden noise and hit your car or fell off into the gutter?
Do you reckon the cyclist went home and thought “oh that poor car driver, I must get some better lights!” or if he just spent the rest of the day thinking what a total cock you were?Posted 4 years agonjee20Subscriber
Yep. At lights I’ll lean out too and say ‘excuse me you skirt/coat/pannier bag is obscuring your rear light’ too
That makes sense. Using the horn as you did makes you seem like a complete prick, I hope someone kicks your car in response. Or they just run you over for lolz when you’re riding 🙄Posted 4 years agoprojectMember
My colleague went absolutely nuts, ranting about bloody cyclists, etc.
and is that someone you want sitting next to you in a tin can weighing possibly more than a ton, and capable of doing serious damge to cyclists due to your inattention beacuse a ranter is stiting next to you .
Public transport is available for ranters.Posted 4 years agoshifterMember
Do you reckon the cyclist went home and thought “oh that poor car driver, I must get some better lights!” or if he just spent the rest of the day thinking what a total cock you were?
Hopefully at least some of the first bit. Too many casual cyclists just seem to think “feckit, I can see well enough to ride, someone else can worry about my safety”.Posted 4 years ago
Ever chanced it? Its dark before you set off? Someone startles you, makes you think ‘**** good point I’m taking a stupid idiotic and **** brainlrss risk’.
If just one rider thought that. Im happy.
Those that think ‘come on then lets have you’ will one day become a premature alcohol, accident or murder stat.
Im also old enough to know someone may ‘want’ me at the lights. Funnily most switch to pavement riding before then OR jump the red light.
Its your insurance that pays if you hit them with your car.Posted 4 years agojamesfullerMember
If a bike light catches your eye half a mile away, I would say it is dark enough for lights.
So you can see the unlit bikes, ok, but if the road wasn’t straight, if there where cars driving towards you with there headlights on.
To me there is no point risking going without lights or hi vis etc.Posted 4 years agocrazy-legsSubscriber
Also, I wish people would stop with the we don’t do ourselves any favours.
What some other random person on a bike does or doesn’t do bears no relation to anything that I might do.
I don’t say that motorists don’t do themselves any favours cos they kill hundreds of people a year, drive while under the influence/using mobile phones/untaxed/uninsured etc.
Just lazy sterotyping. Frankly if a passenger in my car started making those kind of comments, they’d be out and walking the rest of the way.Posted 4 years ago
A couple of comments about hi-vis and blinking lights. You’re right, a cyclist doesn’t have to wear or use them. In my mind its down to self preservation. No good being a dead, but in the right, bike ninja.
We did have a conversation, ahmm, argument about the rights and wrongs. His point that they weren’t road legal is perfectly valid. Although he did back down about “all cyclists are the same” when I challenged him about that.
If a pedestrian was walking that road without a light or hi-vis, then they are not taking reasonable precautions, IMO.Posted 4 years agomrmoMember
If a pedestrian was walking that road without a light or hi-vis, then they are not taking reasonable precautions, IMO.
And if it happens to be a herd of deer?
You can expect cyclists to have lights, pedestrians to wear light clothing hi viz etc etc.
But at the end of the day you are the one driving the powerful machine that is perfectly capable of killing people. There will always be things in the dark that won’t be lit. Thus the onus will always be on you to make sure you are safe.Posted 4 years agokcrMember
Motorists killed around 5 people today on UK roads. And 5 people yesterday. And 5 people the day before that. And 5 people the day before that. And 5 people the day before that. And 5 people the day before that…
I can’t defend that to a non motorist.
My colleague went absolutely nuts, ranting about bloody cyclists, etc. I couldn’t defend them
You don’t have to defend the guys with no rear lights. They’re breaking the law and potentially putting themselves at risk. You can defend the majority of safe, law-abiding cyclists from your colleague’s lazy stereotyping. As Michael Hutchinson said: “Why is my right to safety contingent on whether or not someone I’ve never met rides through a light?”.Posted 4 years agopslingSubscriber
Had a similar situation about a week ago. Driving to work in the dark along unlit rural road, came up behind a colleague also driving to work who had turned onto the road a couple of hundred yards in front of me.
Before my colleague had pulled onto the road I had seen a bike some distance further up the road and when I passed the cyclist I muttered to myself that he could improve his own self-preservation by not riding in head to toe dark clothing with only a single, dim rear light.
When I got to work my colleague was having a right rant about the idiot cyclist he’d only seen at the last moment and had nearly hit; it would have been his own stupid fault for riding in black clothes with no lights.
I pointed out that I had been following behind him and had seen the bike light from some distance. His reply was “yeah, but you’re a bike rider”.
The outcome was that we agreed that the cyclist could have been better lit and wearing more visible clothing but also that my colleague should have seen him in any case and he conceded that he should be more observant driving rural roads in the dark.
The one difference to the OP is that my rider was actually riding within the law; he did have (minimal) lights front and back.Posted 4 years ago
Uselesshippy Im not that person who hits his horn, shakes his fist and shouts you are too far out from the kerb.
People I beep tend to be chancers or worse nasty ****. Especially here in Manchester. A roadie wouldnt ride without lights.
Go rail against and beat your fists against someone else.Posted 4 years ago
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