Flashing LEDs to be made legal

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Helen C Simmons, Feb 4, 2005.

  1. David Martin

    David Martin Guest

    On 6/2/05 8:10 pm, in article [email protected], "Pete Biggs"
    <pwrinkledgrape{remove_fruit}@biggs.tc> wrote:

    > Danny Colyer wrote:
    >
    >>> That particular problem solved by using a *fast*-flashing light, one
    >>> that flashes a few times per second.

    >>
    >> Yeah, and gives the poor sod behind a stinking headache, thus greatly
    >> reducing his ability to concentrate.

    >
    > I doubt they really do that, but cause some annoyance.

    I once got very close to being thrown out of a tent in a campsite in North
    Wales. The six other people I was sharing a Mk5 force ten with had not been
    smoking tobacco (which I had passed up, not being of that persuasion but
    preferring the inside of a smoky tent to a howling gale and rain outside).

    The amber roadworks beacon being waved around didn't endear me to those who
    were able to work out how to still string words together, though none of
    them could remember it in the morning.

    ...d
     


  2. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    Danny Colyer wrote:

    >>> Yeah, and gives the poor sod behind a stinking headache, thus
    >>> greatly reducing his ability to concentrate.

    >>
    >> I doubt they really do that, but cause some annoyance.

    >
    > Do you really doubt that fast flashing lights give me a headache?


    Bicycle ones out on the road encountered for a few seconds at a time is
    what I was doubting.

    > I
    > assure you that they do (if they're bright enough to actually be of
    > any practical use), and if they give me a headache then it seems
    > reasonable
    > to assume that they will give headaches to at least some other people.
    >
    >> It's an
    >> unfortunate price that has to be paid until super-bright steady
    >> lights are more practical and affordable for all cyclists all the
    >> time. We are getting there with new generations of LED & battery
    >> technology so maybe blinkies will die out.

    >
    > I seriously doubt it. All we get with improved technology is brighter
    > flashing lights and worse headaches.


    We'll have to see. I personally won't bother with flashing lights once I
    can avoid them without adding much inconvenience, weight & cost. I'm
    thinking about getting a/the steady LED rear light to hook up to my
    Lumicycle battery. Trouble is that it involves an extra cable and I won't
    always want to ride with the battery.

    ~PB
     
  3. Nigel Cliffe

    Nigel Cliffe Guest

    Danny Colyer wrote:
    > I wrote:
    >>> I've responded to you making that comment before. I find it very
    >>> much easier to track the movement of a steady light. If I know that
    >>> there's a cyclist ahead of me then I like to know where he is, so
    >>> that I can make sure I don't hit him. That's easier if he doesn't
    >>> keep disappearing and then reappearing somewhere else. As Peter B
    >>> wrote, it's a subjective matter.

    >
    > and Nigel Cliffe wrote:
    >> Its not a subjective matter.... its a function of how the human
    >> visual system works. And the arguments presented in the thread as to
    >> which people prefer seem to back that.

    > <big snip>
    >> - Nigel (university studies included the mechanisms of human
    >> perception)

    >
    > I can't think of anything much more subjective than perception!


    Err, no.. At least not in my use of the term.
    I meant
    "subjective = personal opinion, not based on scientific evidence",
    and
    "not subjective = based on a scientific understanding of how things work".

    The description I gave is founded on experiments into how perception works,
    as opposed to personal preference for one type of light over another.


    You can't overrule the design of your visual system.
    But, you can learn stategies to make better use of the information which
    your eyes can gather in certain circumstances, and you gave evidence of one
    strategy.


    It may be linguistic hair splitting, but I think that you are using the word
    "subjective" in a different way to me.



    - Nigel


    --
    NC - Webmaster for http://www.2mm.org.uk/
    Replies to newsgroup postings to the newsgroup please.
     
  4. David Martin

    David Martin Guest

    On 6/2/05 10:10 pm, in article [email protected], "Nigel
    Cliffe" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >
    > It may be linguistic hair splitting, but I think that you are using the word
    > "subjective" in a different way to me.


    Oi, You're not supposed to be sensible on usenet, you're supposed to go off
    into a big barney and fuel a flame war..

    ...d
     
  5. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    Danny Colyer wrote:
    > I wrote:
    >>> Do you really doubt that fast flashing lights give me a headache?

    >
    > and Pete Biggs responded:
    >> Bicycle ones out on the road encountered for a few seconds at a time
    >> is what I was doubting.

    >
    > That's a fair point when considering the effects on motorists,
    > although there are occasions when a motorist will be sat behind the
    > light for more than a few seconds (particularly if he's waiting until
    > it's safe to pass). On my homewards commute I will occasionally have
    > the same car behind me for possibly up to a minute, when I am sat in
    > a queue of traffic on a road without room to filter.


    That is when I do feel guilty. Same sort of thing with a front flashing
    light whilst waiting to turn right when there's slow moving traffic on the
    other side. I will then sometimes switch to steady mode.

    > Anyway, what about the effects on other cyclists? I might be sat
    > behind a flashing light for a few minutes before I manage to catch
    > and pass the cyclist with the flasher. Then a mile further along
    > I'll come up behind another one. I hate that.


    I must admit I don't like cycling behind flashers :)

    ~HP, Hypocrite Pete
     
  6. njf>badger

    njf>badger Guest

    David Hansen wrote:
    >>>I'd object quite strongly to any proposal to legalise the use of
    >>>flashing lights on their own.

    >>
    >>Why? They seem to me to be much more visible than steady lights, either
    >>LED or filament lamp types.

    >
    >
    > Being "visible" is easy, but not what is necessary. People crash
    > into bright red fire engines, bright yellow buses and vans on clear
    > summer days.


    And aother problem is visual draw, look at something whilst driving and
    you probably hit it, motorcyclist training, spot the manhole cover, look
    at a spot to the side of it or you'll ride over it and in the wet slip
    and crash...
     
  7. John_Kane

    John_Kane Guest

    James Annan wrote:
    > Nigel Cliffe wrote:
    >
    >
    > >
    > > Its not a subjective matter.... its a function of how the human

    visual
    > > system works.

    >
    > Nevertheless, it does not seem to have been shown clearly (or indeed

    at
    > all) as to which type of light is better in practice on the back of a


    > bicycle.
    >
    > > And the arguments presented in the thread as to which people
    > > prefer seem to back that.

    >


    Personally I prefer a flashing LED. It has the advantage of much
    greater endurance esp. in cold weather (trust me, you do not want to
    try and change a battery at -20 C / wind chill of -35 C. They seem to
    be more immediatly noticeable when I am in a car but then I don't drive
    much

    Just out of interest :)
    http://www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_rdsafety/documents/page/dft_rdsafety_504672.hcsp
    RSAP(01)15 VSE research update: May - August 2001
    Quarterly Report No. 9 May to August 2001
    PART I. COMPLETED PROJECTS
    MOTOR VEHICLE AND PEDAL CYCLE CONSPICUITY: S270F/VC

    Pedal Cycle Lighting
    Conclusions and Recommendations: The research concluded that flashing
    LED lamps neither improved nor impaired cyclist conspicuity. Further
    conclusions were that existing British Standard approved lighting
    failed to provide adequate frontal conspicuity under all circumstances.
    It was also noted that LED lamps are currently non-compliant with
    British Standards and fail to provide adequate frontal visibility.

    > Seems to me that people are doing the usual thing of choosing

    whatever
    > evidence happens to suit their prejudices.
    >
    > James


    Well I do. But the longevity of the LED is important though I could run
    it as a solid light.

    John Kane
    Kingston ON
     
  8. David Martin

    David Martin Guest

    On 7/2/05 5:14 pm, in article
    [email protected], "John_Kane"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >
    > James Annan wrote:


    > Personally I prefer a flashing LED. It has the advantage of much
    > greater endurance esp. in cold weather (trust me, you do not want to
    > try and change a battery at -20 C / wind chill of -35 C. They seem to
    > be more immediatly noticeable when I am in a car but then I don't drive
    > much


    Been there, done that. 2 hour commute in winter. The trick is to carry a
    spare light. LED lights are so cheap and light you can carry two. When one
    runs down, swap the light and change the batteries when you get home.

    With a minimum of 30 hour run time on steady, that was fine for over a week
    of commuting, even in deep snow and cold temperatures.

    ...d
     
  9. John_Kane

    John_Kane Guest

    David Martin wrote:
    > On 7/2/05 5:14 pm, in article
    > [email protected], "John_Kane"
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >
    > > James Annan wrote:

    >
    > > Personally I prefer a flashing LED. It has the advantage of much
    > > greater endurance esp. in cold weather (trust me, you do not want

    to
    > > try and change a battery at -20 C / wind chill of -35 C. They seem

    to
    > > be more immediatly noticeable when I am in a car but then I don't

    drive
    > > much

    >
    > Been there, done that. 2 hour commute in winter. The trick is to

    carry a
    > spare light. LED lights are so cheap and light you can carry two.

    When one
    > runs down, swap the light and change the batteries when you get home.
    >
    > With a minimum of 30 hour run time on steady, that was fine for over

    a week
    > of commuting, even in deep snow and cold temperatures.
    >
    > ..d


    Min of 30 hours? I have never worked it out but I know I tend to think
    of LED's in terms of years! And that includes the once or twice I have
    left the thing on and come out the next morning to find it still
    blinking away.

    John Kane
    KIngston ON.
     
  10. >> With a minimum of 30 hour run time on steady

    > Min of 30 hours? I have never worked it out but I know I tend to think
    > of LED's in terms of years! And that includes the once or twice I have
    > left the thing on and come out the next morning to find it still
    > blinking away.


    blinking - steady

    You may want to change/recharge the batteries before they run out, as the
    lights get dimmer as the batteries drain.
     
  11. Nigel Cliffe

    Nigel Cliffe Guest

    David Martin wrote:
    > On 6/2/05 10:10 pm, in article [email protected], "Nigel
    > Cliffe" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>
    >> It may be linguistic hair splitting, but I think that you are using
    >> the word "subjective" in a different way to me.

    >
    > Oi, You're not supposed to be sensible on usenet, you're supposed to
    > go off into a big barney and fuel a flame war..


    After 17 or 18 years of Usenet I have mellowed.



    --
    NC - Webmaster for http://www.2mm.org.uk/
    Replies to newsgroup postings to the newsgroup please.
     
  12. Danny Colyer

    Danny Colyer Guest

    Pete Biggs wrote:
    > I must admit I don't like cycling behind flashers :)


    Thanks for understanding my point so soon. I know I didn't make it as
    clear as I could have done as soon as I should have done.

    > ~HP, Hypocrite Pete


    <G>

    --
    Danny Colyer (the UK company has been laughed out of my reply address)
    <URL:http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/danny/>
    "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." - Thomas Paine
     
  13. Danny Colyer

    Danny Colyer Guest

    Nigel Cliffe wrote:
    > After 17 or 18 years of Usenet I have mellowed.


    ISTM that usenet itself has mellowed in recent years, but that probably
    has much more to do with the newsgroups that I now choose to read than
    with any true mellowing of usenet generally.

    --
    Danny Colyer (the UK company has been laughed out of my reply address)
    <URL:http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/danny/>
    "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." - Thomas Paine
     
  14. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Mon, 07 Feb 2005 13:39:13 +0000 someone who may be "njf>badger<"
    <"njf>badger<"@soton.ac.uk> wrote this:-

    >And aother problem is visual draw, look at something whilst driving and
    >you probably hit it, motorcyclist training, spot the manhole cover, look
    >at a spot to the side of it or you'll ride over it and in the wet slip
    >and crash...


    Called target fixation in other fields. One example is the Spitfire
    pilot who was so occupied with attacking the Stuka that he failed to
    notice the Me109 pilot who was about to shoot him down.


    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E
    I will always explain revoked keys, unless the UK government
    prevents me by using the RIP Act 2000.
     
  15. Peter B

    Peter B Guest

    "David Martin" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:BE2C4A3E.9170%[email protected]
    > On 6/2/05 10:10 pm, in article [email protected], "Nigel
    > Cliffe" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >
    > > It may be linguistic hair splitting, but I think that you are using the

    word
    > > "subjective" in a different way to me.

    >
    > Oi, You're not supposed to be sensible on usenet, you're supposed to go

    off
    > into a big barney and fuel a flame war..


    I think we're quite civilised here, now if you want some action go over to
    uk.t*ansport ;-)

    Pete
     
  16. LSMike

    LSMike Guest

    njf>badger< wrote:

    > And aother problem is visual draw, look at something whilst driving

    and
    > you probably hit it, motorcyclist training, spot the manhole cover,

    look
    > at a spot to the side of it or you'll ride over it and in the wet

    slip
    > and crash...


    You know those highway vehicles that serve purely as a mega flashing
    light/arrow lane closure type signal? I noticed one this weekend that
    had a huge hydraulic fold-down bumper at the back labelled with a
    company name and "Energy Absorbtion" on the side. Wonder if it's there
    for this reason? Maybe they get a lot of cars crashing into the back
    of them.
     
  17. Mike Causer

    Mike Causer Guest

    On Mon, 07 Feb 2005 21:21:54 +0000, Nigel Cliffe wrote:

    > After 17 or 18 years of Usenet I have mellowed.


    Even the denizens of a.s.r have mellowed. The full gory details of
    disembowelment of lusers are now reduced to "cut their internet access off".


    Shame really; raised floors are now so common in office buildings, and
    the cabling so thick beneath, that hints on how to carve lusers into
    concealable pieces that can be easily hidden beneath the snake-nest would
    be very handy.

    Oh, don't try this in a building with 90% recirculated air-con. The
    smell will give the game away. You need a building that takes in ambient
    air and runs it through a heat exchanger with the outgoing air -- like the
    system at ex-Ioni(&(&(&(&(&(&(

    No Carrier
     
  18. Jon Senior

    Jon Senior Guest

    Simon Brooke wrote:
    > And as a driver I find flashing lights on bicycles greatly preferable to
    > steady ones. They're not only highly visible at a distance, they're
    > highly diagnostic at a distance. For example, I was recently following
    > two red lights down a narrow road. Was it a car, or a tractor, or what?
    > No, it was immediately obvious at over half a mile away that it was two
    > bicycles side by side, because one of the lights was flashing.
    >
    > Me? I'd _ban_ steady back lights.


    Including those on the back of cars? The scenario you describe could
    also have been a car with a faulty light (I've seen it around town!). A
    combination of lights would be better, along with reflective clothing.

    Jon
     
  19. Jack Ouzzi

    Jack Ouzzi Guest

    Something to think about when broken down on the motorway hard
    shoulder. Thousands of accidents every year as following drivers appear
    to be 'attracted' to the stationary vehicle. ALWAYS get out of your car
    and stand up and away BEHIND it. 30 years in the Fire Service and seen
    too many fatalities as a result. Lone women, ring the Police and
    explain.
     
  20. On 12 Feb 2005 23:41:20 -0800, "Jack Ouzzi" <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    | Something to think about when broken down on the motorway hard
    | shoulder. Thousands of accidents every year as following drivers appear
    | to be 'attracted' to the stationary vehicle. ALWAYS get out of your car
    | and stand up and away BEHIND it.

    Or better still on the grass and up the banking, and behind the barrier if
    possible

    --
    Dave F
     
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