Ideas For Checking For Cars Approaching From Behind?



Sunflogun

Active Member
Apr 20, 2015
400
44
0
I really don't think that mirrors are that necessary when riding the bike, it's just a matter of paying attention to the road and don't be wearing headphones or something like that, that could distract us.
 

adfnio

Member
Apr 18, 2015
92
8
0
Let's see now. You don't want to turn you head? Hmmm. Well, why don't you listen for cars approaching from behind. Then check your mirrors. Then finally turn your head to make sure there is an actual car there.
 

9lines

Member
May 7, 2015
289
24
18
After you have learned not to panic, then you can use the oncoming traffic by looking at how they react e.g when they brake. Alternatively I use the mirrors.
 

Catsyo

New Member
May 6, 2015
97
0
0
I have mirrors and that's what always made me feel safest. It's true that you don't really need them since you can hear cars but I view them as an added level of protection. With mirrors you can easily see and hear the cars behind you. I'm not sure why they don't come standard on more bikes. I can see why a lot of people wouldn't want them but I bet a significant amount of people would appreciate the addition.
 

hajivitra

New Member
Apr 7, 2015
7
0
0
nice information
thanks all
smiley-emoticon.gif
 

Sunflogun

Active Member
Apr 20, 2015
400
44
0
lol hajivitra, I seem to have seen an exact same post from you in another thread... :D What are you doing??

As for the mirrors, never had them and I don't plan to.
 

dhk2

Well-Known Member
Aug 8, 2006
2,214
74
48
75
Most of my riding buddies have helmet-mount or sunglass-mounted mirrors. They work well, are easy to mount and adjust, and easily removable for racing or photos. Like my helmet and bright flashing daytime taillight, I consider the mirror just another piece of essential safety equipment.

For me, on the narrow no-shoulder two lane rural roads here, it's not good enough to hear a car coming up. I want to be able to watch the car pull over to pass me safely. As soon as I see the car pull over or signal (rare here), I can relax. If I don't see than happening, I like to think I can bail off the road into the ditch in time to avoid being hit.

One friend who doesn't use a mirror is just more fatalistic about the whole deal. He argues that it's the car driver's responsibility to pass him safely, and if they fail to do so, there's nothing he can do about it anyway. I agree that being able to watch the car may give me a false sense of security, but I'll take that vs. worrying about every car passing.

I'd probably feel differently riding in Europe, where cycling is more common and drivers seem to have more respect or caution around us (at least in my experience). Sadly, the risk of being hit from behind is all too real here. Seems many car drivers are distracted, and just saying "didn't see the cyclist" allows them to escape any penalty.

A lawyer explained to me that there is no law against negligent driving here, and unless police actually witness a violation, no ticket is given. In other words, if a cyclist is run down from behind on a rural road....hey, it could of been his fault. Maybe he was riding too far into the lane, or maybe he just had no business out there anyway.
 

DancingLady

Member
Mar 9, 2015
226
22
18
Listen for cars, then look if you are going to be making a lane change, just to make sure you know exactly how much room you have and how fast they are going.

I do not think riding two abreast is a good idea though. Honestly, in my experience, drivers will get upset and make foolish decisions to gt around you. I have had this experience, not riding side by side with someone, but riding in the middle of the lane on a set of curves where there are double yellow lines painted. Someone suggested to me that I do this to prevent cars from partially crossing the double lines to pass me, since this is illegal, but there is not more than 6 inches of pavement on the right side of the white line. What happened when I tried this a couple of times was the motorist crossed the double lines, not just a little, but completely, in order to pass me because they were not patient enough to wait a few seconds for me to get around the second curve and where they could legally pass me. I decided not to do this again because I felt like my actions were going to cause a fatal headon collision where if they only barely crossed the line, an oncoming car might be able to avoid a collision by going off the edge of the pavement a little bit.
 

kylerlittle

Member
Apr 25, 2015
331
12
0
Sunflogun said:
Where I live actually we do have a lot of cars and they don't honk that much, but it's pretty obvious that they are coming, at least for me. I do ride by the side of the road, so they can get past me with no big effort.
You should try installing mirrors.
 

DancingLady

Member
Mar 9, 2015
226
22
18
You really don't want people to honk, it's very startling. I've had to deal with people who do honk for whatever reason, usually there is no apparent reason, and it is very unpleasant. I have often thought that honking at cyclists was a potential hazard, especially since in my town there are a fair amount of older people who cycle around town to get some exercise. Older people can startle more easily and may have slower reflexes than younger people. Every time I've been honked at my gut reaction is to stare straight ahead and use my periferal vision to see if someone is getting too close or something. Usually it's just someone being a jerk.
 
May 9, 2015
158
16
0
The only real way you can check for cars is by using a handle mirror and listening for them. Unless you've managed to grow eyes in the back of your head, that's the best you can do realistically.
 

Sunflogun

Active Member
Apr 20, 2015
400
44
0
kylerlittle said:
You should try installing mirrors.
You seem pretty certain about this lol, why are you saying it? Just because or is there a reason behind it?
 

egrocket

Member
May 14, 2015
53
8
0
I feel like the obvious answer to the question is to get a bike mirror. They sell these at most bike shops if you look, and it is almost flawless. Also listen more when you are on the road. You should always be able to hear a car approaching.
 

Sunflogun

Active Member
Apr 20, 2015
400
44
0
I think that most people who suggest mirrors for a bicycle never actually used a bicycle! Come on, how practical is it to use them for such a thing that really doesn't cause any problems?
 

Femiluv

New Member
Mar 11, 2015
41
2
0
I am very confident in my ability to see (lol) so I usually turn my head. I also rely on my ears too. I never thought of installing a mirror on my bike or helmet but I will definitely do so now after reading these comments. The city I live in is pretty bike friendly but it would be nice to not constantly have to turn my head to see if a car is coming.

I can never understand why people ride on sidewalks when bike lanes are present.

thomas pendrake said:
I agree about not just relying on the mirror. You always need to be aware , whether driving a bike or a car.

In most states, and by Federal law, bicycles are vehicles and belong on the road. In some cities, it is legal to use sidewalks when regular bike lanes are not provided, but that is how I got hit by a deputy sheriff (see my thread about that). Riding on the shoulder can be dangerous as you could take a spill and fall into traffic.
 

Sunflogun

Active Member
Apr 20, 2015
400
44
0
Yeah, my first impression is that the ones that suggest mirrors don't really ride a bike because it's a non-necessity and something that it's just in the way, lol, bikes with mirrors! :D
 

kylerlittle

Member
Apr 25, 2015
331
12
0
Sunflogun said:
You seem pretty certain about this lol, why are you saying it? Just because or is there a reason behind it?
I'm fascinated with mirrors and reflections.
 

mpre53

Well-Known Member
Feb 20, 2013
1,098
179
48
69
Cape Cod, MA, USA
Sunflogun said:
Yeah, my first impression is that the ones that suggest mirrors don't really ride a bike because it's a non-necessity and something that it's just in the way, lol, bikes with mirrors! :D
I can see it for people with back or neck issues, who have difficulty turning their head far enough for a good look behind them.