Institutionalised law-breaking using bikes - anarchy is near at hand



J

Jon Senior

Guest
Silas Denyer [email protected] opined the following...
> As an example, Rollerblades were, ISTR, banned in the Royal Parks
> because a pedestrian was killed by being hit by a 'blader on a
> "pavement". The pedestrian had no choice in the matter (as opposed to
> the choice of not walking in the road with cars).


And where would you put the rollerblader? In the road?

> Pedestrians should have the right to cross at crossings without fear
> of being hit - by *anything*. The earlier "1ft vs 6ft" argument, for
> instance, was spurious in this regard.


You are correct that a pedestrian should be able to cross the road at a
crossing without fear. To presume that this fear comes from a fear of
bikes shows a lack of understanding of reality. Given that you are far
more likely to be killed by a car than a bicycle, being more afraid of
the bikes is a little strange.

> I have been hit (as a pedestrian) by a cyclist (breaking the law),
> whose head (down, not looking, helmetted) struck me in the face. It
> took me a good long time to recover from that. It was not trivial
> (except when compared to death) and was caused entirely by the cyclist
> "only doing what everyone does" (his words). That is my point - break
> down the apparent scale of the offence and soon nobody knows what is
> "wrong" or "unacceptable" or even "undesirable" any longer.


Indeed. Note the number of drivers who routinely exceed speed limits.

> No, the analogy was simply non-analagous. Consider this one instead:


I beg to differ, but that comes down to your perception of threat from
cyclists (Which, it would appear, is tainted by personal experience as
apposed to objective observation).

> You have to defend Smallium from attack by a mixed bag of opponents
> from a single direction. Some have assault rifles, others have
> sharpened fruit. You keep out the riflemen but let through the less
> lethal (but not non-lethal) fruit carriers, and accept a number of
> civilian casualties from fruit.
>
> Soon the riflemen realise that disguising their weapons as fruit is a
> good way to go, whilst your guards become used to letting some enemies
> in. What do you think happens next?


If this is analogous to the original problem then presumably you are
aware of some way in which a car could be disguised as a bike while
retaining its inherent ability to cause damage.

> OK, but:
>
> (a) if every red light has a camera, and most motorists don't want to
> be caught by them, and casualties continue to decrease, suddenly
> cyclists look like a big problem.


1st problem. Not every red light has a camera. A very small proportion
of them are now equipped with cameras and since traffic lights appear to
breed faster than cameras I don't see this changing.
2nd problem. Given the ratios, the cameras would have to be close to
100% effective against the problem of car drivers jumping reds in order
to bring the KSI ratio down to a level where cyclists became a problem.
In that world, the cyclists would no longer see car drivers jumping red
lights and wouldn't assume it was OK.

> (b) how long will people respect the rule of law if it is flouted by
> everybody else, including the police (see my original post)?


The police _always_ flout the rule of law... it's a perk of the job!

Jon
 
J

Just zis Guy, you know?

Guest
On 17 Oct 2004 08:41:52 -0700, [email protected] (Silas Denyer)
wrote in message <[email protected]>:

>>> I think there will shortly be a significant backlash against cyclists,
>>> from *all* sections of the community.


>> LOL! Been living in a hole the last few years, have you?


>Bizarrely, I've lived and worked in a many "cyclist-friendly" places,
>such as Oxford where the "reclaim the streets" lot actually managed to
>get cars pretty much banned from the city centre (along with most of
>the customers for local businesses, but, hey, the cycling's great
>now...).


No shortage of people in the city centre businesses last time I was in
Oxford. And you are missing the point: the backlash is alive and well
and living in the Daily Mail, and has been all along.

But from your example above I would hazard a guess that you are both
pedestrian and motorist, and picking on cyclists because that is
easier than challenging your own behaviour.

>Most people I know don't actually hate cyclists per se, and most of my
>social circle are in fact cyclists and "career pedestrians" rather
>than motorists. However I don't think I've ever seen such a complete
>disregard for the law as I see now, hence my original post.


You should try cycling some time. Disregard for the law is abundant
among our motorised brethren too, with much more dangerous
consequences. Most on urc are in favour of compliance by all road
users. On the other hand, Michael Howard seems to think that traffic
offences are not worth pursuing at all.

>The
>not-so-recent EU proposal to make motorists responsible for all
>accidents involving cyclists didn't help, of course,


And the fact that it also applied to accidents involving pedestrians,
who are at fault in about half of cases rather than the one in five or
less where cyclists are at fault, somehow never made it into the
papers. Funny, that.

A perfect example of the anti-cyclist bigotry already common in the
press, I'd say.

>and I must admit
>that the current tarring of motorists with the brush of "sinners"
>isn't too helpful either,


In what way is it unhelpful? Have you never seen the transport
fatality statistics? Are you not aware that road traffic crashes are
responsible for half of all fatal child injuries? These are not
cyclists who are causing these deaths; we are victims of road danger
just as much as pedestrians are. That's why the leading cyclists'
organisation works closely with pedestrians' campaigning bodies.

>but above I simply believe that good old
>social conscience, disapproval, comment, personal and local
>engagement, etc. are a terribly good way to get things to change for
>the better.


And why not. It works a treat with motor law enforcement, doesn't it?
Look at the scorn poured on those stupid enough to be convicted of
speeding, and the huge support for traffic law enforcement in the
popular press.

Oh, wait...

Guy
--
May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after posting.
http://www.chapmancentral.co.uk

88% of helmet statistics are made up, 65% of them at Washington University
 
I

Ian Smith

Guest
On 17 Oct 2004 08:12:17 -0700, Silas Denyer <[email protected]> wrote:
>
> That isn't the point - widespread lawlessness amongst one section of
> the road-using community will IMHO inevitably lead to an increase in
> the same or similar behaviour by other sections.


Indeed. The vast majority of road users break teh speed limit, and
even have the gall to moan about being caught doing so. As you
observe, this widespread lawlessness tends to lead to yet more
lawlessness. What do you propose?

> Do you agree with the laws about red lights? 1. Yes / 2. No


Yes.

> Do you believe that such laws should not apply to cyclists? 1. Yes /
> 2. No


Yes

> If your score is >2 then we're all in trouble.


But it isn't, so everything's fine?

regards, Ian SMith
--
|\ /| no .sig
|o o|
|/ \|
 
T

Tony Raven

Guest
Silas Denyer wrote:
>
> I must admit
> that the current tarring of motorists with the brush of "sinners"
> isn't too helpful either,


Why not. An estimated 2 million of them will have been prosecuted in
2003 for speeding and running red lights. Out of 30 million license
holders thats a lot of sinners and those are just the ones that get caught!

Tony
 
T

Tony Raven

Guest
Silas Denyer wrote:
>
> Furthermore, the resources required to plate cycles are hardly large,
> are they? The infrastructure all exists, as do the laws, the
> enforcement regime, etc. But I don't think anybody wants that, so time
> for the human approach.
>


I think you will have the law of unintended consequences visiting you.
Every cyclist journey is approx. one less car journey. Cyclists make up
about 2% of journeys across the country. Introducing the paraphernalia
of plates etc and many people won't bother. If motor journeys increase
by 2% as a result, deaths on the roads will to first order increase 2%
or approximately 60 people a year. Cyclists currently kill one or two
people a year. Your scheme would be net 58 people a year more killed.

Now you can argue over exactly how many cyclists would give up, how many
journeys might be by train rather than car but at the end of the day you
need a lot of big factors in your favour before you come close to
removing the huge deficit in human life your proposal creates.

Tony
 
S

Silas Denyer

Guest
"Just zis Guy, you know?" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
> And as has been pointed out to you more than once now, this argument
> only applies in a situation of unlimited resources. And arguably not
> even then, else we would outlaw many things which occasionally cause
> injury, albeit with very low risk.


I am perfectly happy to consider both (or indeed many) points of view,
but I think that the point you're somewhat missing here is that the
debate has already been had - riding or driving on pavements is
illegal, as is running red lights. In our democratic society it was
decided many, many years ago that this was so, and laws were enacted.

The debate as to whether the "problem" should be "addressed" is (in
the terms you seem to consider) spurious. The law is the law, and the
debate should be whether we are happy with laws which are applied
inequitably to different sections of society. And are we happy with
those who are charged with enforcing those laws breaking the same laws
themselves?

> For the record I have said all along that the source of the problem is
> that roads thought to be so dangerous due to careless drivers that
> there is too much incentive for cyclists to take to the pavement, and
> councils make this worse by painting bikes on pavements seemingly at
> random. To pick on the effect rather than the cause is absurd.


My whole point (or intended point!) in my original post was to provide
a few direct (rather than second-hand) observations, and to invite
consideration of suggestions for how the law as it exists could be
evenly applied.

In all other areas this debate would be irrelevant - we wouldn't
accept the enforcement of, say, parking laws based upon the colour or
the car concerned, or the serving of noise-abatement orders only on
those who play opera. This would be rightly considered scandalous, and
would contribute to a complete (or further) decline in any respect for
the law or due process at all. Should women not pay taxes whilst men
do? Can I drive my car on the pavement if I like, along your street
whilst your children are playing?

Most road traffic laws are applied reasonably even handedly. I have
actually been stopped for speeding on my bicycle, for instance, but
never in my car. As a pedestrian I have been hit by a bicycle in an
"illegal place" but never by a car.

I have never, ever, seen a cyclist stopped for running a red light or
riding on a pavement. I almost never see cyclists indicating on the
roads anymore, or bothering to display legal (or indeed any) lights,
or observing give way signs or zebra crossings, etc., yet they are
likely to be legislated for as always non-culpable (source: [1] - see
links below) if we're not careful. That is the point, and the one I
had hoped might be discussed, but it appears that the majority of
posters to this thread are genuinely unconcerned with any of this.

Finally, some stats for those who want them.

First, RoSPA's stats (which obviously only deal with reported
accidents - usually only about 3% for non-fatal, source: [2]) for 2002
are 170 pedestrians collided with a cyclist - three of those died, and
40 sustained serious injuries. Not the same as those for powered
vehicles, but still there all the same. For reference, 775 pedestrians
were killed in 2002 in total in road accidents.

Now, for some context. The West Midlands Road Accident Review 2000
concluded that, of 34 pedestrian fatalities in that sample, 0 were
caused by vehicle failure to accord precedence at a pedestrian
crossing, 1 was caused by a vehicle failing to conform to a traffic
signal/sign. 21 of 34 (62%) were caused by pedestrians randomly
stepping, walking or running from the footpath (source: [3]). So if we
exclude those factors from the equation, we're looking at only 38% of
pedestrian fatalities being caused by motorists.

This implies (on linear scaling, with all the caveats that implies)
that of the 775 pedestrians killed UK-wide about 295 were caused by
road vehicles (including bicycles). Therefore bikes were responsible
for 1% of all pedestrian road deaths caused by vehicles (3 of 295).
Using the West Midlands data as a model, this would put cyclist-caused
pedestrian deaths in the same class as those caused by, say, failure
of motorists to conform to traffic signs/signals.

Now let's consider miles driven / ridden to get some further
statistical context. According to the DfT (source: [4]), in 2002 total
(car,van,taxi) traffic was 490 billion vehicle kilometres. The
equivalent figure for cycles was 320 million for London (source: [5]),
and for the UK as a whole 4 billion (source: [6]).

So it looks like pedestrians are something like 60 times more likely
(per billion kilometre cycle-miles travelled) to be killed by a
bicycle hitting them than, say, by a car failing to head a sign or
signal.

In conclusion, based on this analysis (and I'm sure there are others
that could be done) bikes simply aren't as safe for pedestrians as is
made out. Sure there are less cycles, and hence less pedestrians
killed, but that doesn't make cycles safe for pedestrians to be around
- the average bike is far more likely to kill you than the average car
running a red light!

Put another way, less than 1% of all vehicle miles driven (the
bicycles) caused 1% of all traffic-caused pedestrian fatalities. On
that analysis, bicycles are just as likely (on a per-mile basis) to
kill pedestrians as cars are, whilst pedestrians are far more likely
to cause their own death at the "hends" of a vehicle than either of
these!

Best wishes, Silas

[1] http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/2097872.stm
[2] http://www.lesberries.co.uk/cycling/infra/research.html
[3] http://www.ringroad.org.uk/wmrar2000.htm
[4] http://www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_transstats/documents/page/dft_transstats_026282.hcsp
[5] http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200102/cmhansrd/vo021107/text/21107w03.htm
[6] http://www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_transstats/documents/page/dft_transstats_026292.xls
 
T

Tony Raven

Guest
Silas Denyer wrote:
>
> Most road traffic laws are applied reasonably even handedly. I have
> actually been stopped for speeding on my bicycle, for instance, but
> never in my car.


In that case, unless you were in Richmond Park at the time, you were
wrongly stopped. Royal Parks excepted, the laws which set out the
offence of speeding relate only to motor vehicles. You cannot break the
speed limit on a bicycle.

Tony
 
D

David Hansen

Guest
On Sun, 17 Oct 2004 16:55:49 +0100 someone who may be "Just zis Guy,
you know?" <[email protected]> wrote this:-

>>2. The acceptance into mainstream business of law breaking as a
>>competitive advantage

>
>Speeding, you mean?


Also tachograph offences, drivers hours, lorry maintenance and lorry
loading. This sort of lawlessness is common enough to mean that a
large proportion of lorries stopped at checkpoints have something
illegal about the vehicle or its driver.


--
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.


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D

David Hansen

Guest
On 17 Oct 2004 08:22:53 -0700 someone who may be
[email protected] (Silas Denyer) wrote this:-

>I have been hit (as a pedestrian) by a cyclist (breaking the law),
>whose head (down, not looking, helmetted) struck me in the face.


Individual anecdotes are all very well. However, one needs to look
at the big picture to see the place to start.

I have never been hit by a cyclist. However, I have been run over by
motorists twice while I was walking along the pavement. Does this
mean that I discount the problems of people cycling along pavements?
No it does not. I frequently complain about councils that add some
white paint and blue signs to pavements and make them into "cycle
facilities". (However, I have no objection to people cycling slowly
along suitable pavements, much to the disgust of many in
uk.rec.cycling)


--
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.


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D

David Hansen

Guest
On 17 Oct 2004 08:41:52 -0700 someone who may be
[email protected] (Silas Denyer) wrote this:-

>The
>not-so-recent EU proposal to make motorists responsible for all
>accidents involving cyclists didn't help, of course,


There was no such proposal. That was what the Daily Wail and the
like claimed the proposal was.


--
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.


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J

John Rowland

Guest
"Tony Raven" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> Silas Denyer wrote:
> >
> > I have actually been stopped for speeding on my bicycle.

>
> You cannot break the speed limit on a bicycle.


However, you can be busted for cycling "furiously".

--
John Rowland - Spamtrapped
Transport Plans for the London Area, updated 2001
http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Acropolis/7069/tpftla.html
A man's vehicle is a symbol of his manhood.
That's why my vehicle's the Piccadilly Line -
It's the size of a county and it comes every two and a half minutes
 
D

dirtylitterboxofferingstospammers

Guest
>I think there will shortly be a significant backlash against cyclists,
>from *all* sections of the community. I present three examples for
>consideration.


sniff... sniff...

Ah yes, the clearly identifiable odour of fetid liquid bowel movements that
attaches to troll.

Cheers, helen s



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T

Tony Raven

Guest
Silas Denyer wrote:
>
> This implies (on linear scaling, with all the caveats that implies)
> that of the 775 pedestrians killed UK-wide about 295 were caused by
> road vehicles (including bicycles). Therefore bikes were responsible
> for 1% of all pedestrian road deaths caused by vehicles (3 of 295).
> Using the West Midlands data as a model, this would put cyclist-caused
> pedestrian deaths in the same class as those caused by, say, failure
> of motorists to conform to traffic signs/signals.
>


There is a fault in your logic. You say that only 295 of the 775
pedestrians killed by motor vehicles were because of driver fault. Yet
you assume that all three of the pedestrians killed by cyclists were the
cyclists fault. Since on average one was on the pavement and the other
two were killed in the roadway, it is likely that the ratios are similar
making the ratio either 1:295 or 3:775 and not as you would have it 3:295

Tony
 
D

David Hansen

Guest
On Sun, 17 Oct 2004 17:01:40 +0100 someone who may be Jon Senior
<jon_AT_restlesslemon_DOTco_DOT_uk> wrote this:-

>I
>doubt very much that the DVLA could cope with an influx of vehicle
>registrations on the order of the number of bikes in Britain.


That barely cope with the cars. There are more bikes than cars in
the UK, though if the scheme was restricted to bikes in "active use"
that would reduce the numbers.


--
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.


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D

David Hansen

Guest
On 17 Oct 2004 10:10:54 -0700 someone who may be
[email protected] (Silas Denyer) wrote this:-

>I have
>actually been stopped for speeding on my bicycle, for instance,


Have you really?

Since motor vehicle speed limits don't apply to bikes perhaps you
could explain the circumstances.

>I have never, ever, seen a cyclist stopped for running a red light or
>riding on a pavement.


Personal anecdotes again.

>Now let's consider miles driven / ridden to get some further
>statistical context. According to the DfT (source: [4]), in 2002 total
>(car,van,taxi) traffic was 490 billion vehicle kilometres. The
>equivalent figure for cycles was 320 million for London (source: [5]),
>and for the UK as a whole 4 billion (source: [6]).


Your "analysis" has several flaws. Here are two.

Firstly "official" figures tend to underestimate distances travelled
on foot and by bike. Journeys under one mile are frequently excluded
and often a figure is only recorded for the "main" part of the
journey. Walk to the bus stop, travel by bus and walk to your
destination and the walking part frequently is not recorded by
"official" figures.

Secondly you assume that the pedestrians, cyclists and motorists are
using the same roads. That is not the case. Much of the motor
distance is covered on roads where pedestrians and cyclists are not
permitted or have been driven off.

Even if distance is a good measure of exposure, something one could
argue, it makes sense to make sure one is comparing apples with
apples.



--
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.


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J

Jon Senior

Guest
David Hansen [email protected] opined the following...
> That barely cope with the cars. There are more bikes than cars in
> the UK, though if the scheme was restricted to bikes in "active use"
> that would reduce the numbers.


Well they're gonna have problems. I currently have three bikes and may
well add a fourth to the stables over winter. All three currently get
used. Comments from other u.r.c-ers suggest that I'm not alone in this.
I'd be surprised if there were much less than 1 bike / person in usage
(Occasional or otherwise) in Britain.

Jon
 
J

Just zis Guy, you know?

Guest
On 17 Oct 2004 10:10:54 -0700, [email protected] (Silas Denyer)
wrote in message <[email protected]>:

>> as has been pointed out to you more than once now, this argument
>> only applies in a situation of unlimited resources. And arguably not
>> even then, else we would outlaw many things which occasionally cause
>> injury, albeit with very low risk.


>I am perfectly happy to consider both (or indeed many) points of view,
>but I think that the point you're somewhat missing here is that the
>debate has already been had - riding or driving on pavements is
>illegal, as is running red lights. In our democratic society it was
>decided many, many years ago that this was so, and laws were enacted.


And where did I say otherwise? I have absolutely no problem with
these laws or their enforcement, provided it does not detract from
saving lives. I go further and actively discourage pavement cycling
even when it is legal.

What I don't support is the idea that enforcement of these offences
should be prioritised over and above other mass lawbreaking. I also
take issue with the idea that mass lawbreaking is in some way
restricted to cyclists. Even the offences you name, pavements and red
light jumping, are not unique to cyclists - you are around 200 times
as likely to be killed by a motorist on the footway than by a cyclist,
and we have all seen people jump red lights in cars. Tony Raven's
thoughts on this are cogent and valid.

I have seen a car mount the pavement in order to drive through a red
traffic light, as well, which I thought probably was a genuinely
bike-only thing. It seems that what is stopping them is not greater
respect for the law so much as less opportunity or incentive; it is
very clear from the levels of FPNs being sent out that where there is
little incentive to comply, a substantial minority if not a majority
road users will happily ignore a law which is personally inconvenient
at the time.

Given that illegal behaviour is rife, it makes good sense to tackle
first that which causes most public danger. Most of us on urc were
happy to welcome the clampdown by Hants plod on cycling offences,
although drivers in a crossposted group were very unhappy that few of
us were willing to do so in a way which specifically excluded
condemnation of all traffic offences. They seemed to have much less
of a problem with singling out bikes for enforcement. I wonder why
that might be?

>The debate as to whether the "problem" should be "addressed" is (in
>the terms you seem to consider) spurious. The law is the law, and the
>debate should be whether we are happy with laws which are applied
>inequitably to different sections of society. And are we happy with
>those who are charged with enforcing those laws breaking the same laws
>themselves?


No, the debate is on where we should apply the limited resource of
police time. If you want to suggest a zero tolerance approach for all
traffic offences, by the driver or operator of any vehicle, I think
you would find widespread - possibly even unanimous - agreement among
cyclists on urc.

>My whole point (or intended point!) in my original post was to provide
>a few direct (rather than second-hand) observations, and to invite
>consideration of suggestions for how the law as it exists could be
>evenly applied.


Had you looked at the history of urc you would see that your exactly
the same spurious reasoning has been used many times before, quite
often with exactly the same ridiculous proposed "solution".

You have in common with those other posters a failure to consider the
reasons why successive Governments have never taken up this solution.

>In all other areas this debate would be irrelevant - we wouldn't
>accept the enforcement of, say, parking laws based upon the colour or
>the car concerned, or the serving of noise-abatement orders only on
>those who play opera.


Have you never read the tabloid press? Are you not aware that Michael
Howard is actively campaigning against enforcement of traffic laws?

>Can I drive my car on the pavement if I like, along your street
>whilst your children are playing?


Can you explain how come you are nearly two hundred times as likely to
be killed by a motor vehicle on the footway than by a bike, despite
what you claim to be widespread use of bikes on footways?

>Most road traffic laws are applied reasonably even handedly. I have
>actually been stopped for speeding on my bicycle, for instance, but
>never in my car.


This must have been in a Royal Park, then, since speed limits do not
otherwise apply to pedal cycles.

>As a pedestrian I have been hit by a bicycle in an
>"illegal place" but never by a car.


Lucky you. As a cyclist I have been hit by three cars and forced off
the road by a car and a lorry. In all five cases I was cycling
legally and the drivers were committing traffic offences. Only one of
them was prosecuted, and they received a trivial fine and no
endorsement. I was hospitalised for a couple of days and off work for
two weeks, and it took me nearly two years to get the money back for
the bike which was destroyed.

>I have never, ever, seen a cyclist stopped for running a red light or
>riding on a pavement.


I have. I have also seen a council paint bikes on a pavement to say
that this time it's OK to ride on the pavement, and I've seen people
advising parents that the pavement is safer for their children, and
I've seen cyclists berated for *not* riding on the pavement when a
driver wanted to go faster.

>I almost never see cyclists indicating on the
>roads anymore, or bothering to display legal (or indeed any) lights,
>or observing give way signs or zebra crossings, etc.,


Blah blah blah. When was the last time you saw a BMW use indicators?
When was the last time you exceeded the speed limit in your car? When
was the last time you saw a car illegally parked? Road users will
break whatever laws they feel they can get away with. I have no
problem with zero-tolerance, but singling out for priority the group
which is (a) behaving illegally partly in response to the illegal
behaviour of others and (b) responsible for an almost unmeasurably
small proportion of the danger out there, is simply absurd.

>yet they are
>likely to be legislated for as always non-culpable (source: [1] - see
>links below)


You need to check your sources more carefully. The proposed EU Fifth
Insurance Directive covers both cyclists and pedestrians, the group
you are championing, and does so despite the fact that pedestrians are
far more likely to be the authors of their own demise (in about half
of all cases, for cyclists it's less than one in five). On the other
hand, 90% of injury crashes are directly attributable to driver error,
according to the police, so again it looks as if you are pinning the
blame on the wrong target.

>if we're not careful. That is the point, and the one I
>had hoped might be discussed, but it appears that the majority of
>posters to this thread are genuinely unconcerned with any of this.


No, it's simply that these are very far from being original views and
have already been discussed ad nauseam.

>First, RoSPA's stats (which obviously only deal with reported
>accidents - usually only about 3% for non-fatal, source: [2]) for 2002
>are 170 pedestrians collided with a cyclist - three of those died, and
>40 sustained serious injuries. Not the same as those for powered
>vehicles, but still there all the same. For reference, 775 pedestrians
>were killed in 2002 in total in road accidents.


So, cyclists responsible for 0.4% of deaths. Better start with the
99.6% cause, don't you think?

>Now, for some context. The West Midlands Road Accident Review 2000
>concluded that, of 34 pedestrian fatalities in that sample, 0 were
>caused by vehicle failure to accord precedence at a pedestrian
>crossing, 1 was caused by a vehicle failing to conform to a traffic
>signal/sign. 21 of 34 (62%) were caused by pedestrians randomly
>stepping, walking or running from the footpath (source: [3]). So if we
>exclude those factors from the equation, we're looking at only 38% of
>pedestrian fatalities being caused by motorists.


So 62% of fatalities are caused by the ped running out into the road
(as reported by the driver, obviously, who clearly has no incentive to
lie). An obvious case for compulsory licensing of pedestrians.

You also have to remember that fatalities are sufficiently rare that
they do not form a sound basis for statistical analysis, which is why
KSI is more usually used. And of course you ignore the fact that you
are, as I have said before, nearly 200 times as likely to be killed by
a motor vehicle on the footway than by a bike.

>This implies (on linear scaling, with all the caveats that implies)


First among which being that the sample quoted is statistically
insignificant. You seem to be going to great lengths to build your
straw man, though.

>Now let's consider miles driven / ridden to get some further
>statistical context.


Oops! The figures quotes are also inaccurate because of sampling
methodology. They don't include cycle paths, and mixed-mode journeys
are counted solely by the majority mode by distance, so cycling (and
walking) are both under-represented. Other figures discussed on urc
recently put the risk from cycling as between one and two orders of
magnitude less than driving, per unit distance.

And even that is not the full picture, if you assume (as you clearly
do) that a large proportion of cyclist mileage is on the pavement.
Drivers kill pedestrians on the pavement all the time, yet they rarely
drive on it (except to park illegally) so the risk per unit of
pavement travel is clearly massively more for cars.

>So it looks like pedestrians are something like 60 times more likely
>(per billion kilometre cycle-miles travelled) to be killed by a
>bicycle hitting them than, say, by a car failing to head a sign or
>signal.


Which assumes that failing to obey a sign or signal is the only reason
why cars kill pedestrians. That is not true.

Of course, you can decide to arbitrarily exclude the offences drivers
commit and include the offences cyclists commit, but that is not a
very honest way of making a case.

Much more honest to look at the figures. Cyclists kill one or two
people in a bad year. Drivers kill several thousand /every/ year, to
the point where more people have died in motor crashes since the
invention of the car than in all the wars fought in the same period
put together. I think Bush is trying to change that, but he's not
managed it yet.

>- the average bike is far more likely to kill you than the average car
>running a red light!


You are more likely to be killed by a cyclist throwing his bike at you
than by a motorist picking up his car and throwing it at you. Is that
a particularly good reason to ignore the fact that motorists kill
hundreds of times more pedestrians than cyclists do?

What you have done is:

- cherry-pick the offence drivers are least likely to commit, not
least because they are constrained by other traffic

- extrapolate data from a tiny data set without looking into the
underlying detail or the national picture

- apportion blame to that offence without noting the documented fact
that many tens of people are killed by cars on pedestrian crossing
every year so clearly your data is misleading in some important
respect

- ignore the effect of all other offences, including those most likely
to be fatal and most likely to be committed other than by your chosen
scapegoat, in order to make a case.

It's an extraordinarily weak argument, and marks you out as a chippy
petrolhead rather than a pedestrian. Genuine pedestrians - those who
are not simply people who have found somewhere to park the car - are
if anything more concerned about motor danger than cyclists are.

Guy
--
May contain traces of irony. Contents liable to settle after posting.
http://www.chapmancentral.co.uk

88% of helmet statistics are made up, 65% of them at Washington University
 
A

Alan Braggins

Guest
In article <[email protected]>, Ningi wrote:
>
>Well, my experience of cycling from Waterloo to Bank several times a
>week is that at least 75% of cyclists go straight through red lights.
>If the same numbers applied to cars, then 75% of the time, a car
>arriving at a red light should jump it. This isn't even remotely the
>case.


It's about 50% here in Cambridge I estimate. And a bit less for cyclists.
 
D

David Splett

Guest
"Silas Denyer" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> Well, I was stopped at the red lights in question, so that wasn't
> really a problem. I suggest that I was concentrating rather harder
> than the cyclists in question.


So you were ready to take action should a lorry come up behind you at speed?
Was your engine switched off?


> So I take it that you condone these activities and the breakdown of
> law?


To be honest, I don't care about these activities as long as they don't
affect me. Of course I have been involved in situations where pavements
cyclists and red-light-disregarders have irritated or inconvenienced me, but
I tend to take it more as an individual issue, and don't make unjustified
generalizations about groups of people based upon a handful of incidents. A
prat is a prat in any situation - whether they are driving a car, riding a
bike, sitting on a train or whatever.
 
A

Alan Braggins

Guest
In article <[email protected]>, Pyromancer wrote:
>
>Anyone who deliberately rides through a red light in anything other than
>a dire emergency is a complete moron and should be put off the road.


I ride through a red light most days, but only when the lights for the
adjacent lane (going in the same direction) are green. I've written to the
local council about it, and it's a design problem they have no intention
of fixing.