Is your bike safe?

Discussion in 'Commuting and Road Safety' started by Mark George, Jan 4, 2012.



  1. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    The problem wasn't the bike. The problem was the rider, both in the direction he was riding and the equipment he was using.
     
  2. Mark George

    Mark George New Member

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    The rider and the bike are one in the same.
     
  3. maydog

    maydog Well-Known Member

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    Sad, but the rider was riding in the dark with no lights and against traffic. It was an accident waiting to happen. From the news clip you can see a child seat on the bike - thank goodness the rider was solo.

    In the past year, I have noticed a lot of riders, both young and adult, riding against traffic on busy roads. I do not know if this is a trend, but it is a good idea to re-educate riders on safe driving practices. More than once, I have considered stopping them as we cross, but I am pretty sure that my intentions would misinterpreted.

    I commute not too far from that area. In the winter, on my bike, I try to stay off the roads and use trails and sidewalks as much as possible, even if that adds a few miles to my ride. I don't trust distracted, bad drivers on slippery roads with unplowed shoulders.
     
  4. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    Education is lacking in so many areas of our society that it is sickening. Cute dog avatar btw.
     
  5. Mark George

    Mark George New Member

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    I agree with you Maydog. Riding in the winter time and at nite is a risky proposition. I just finished a ride here in the dark(no snow yet), but my bike is well equipped and I ride with traffic. Not that there is much here where I live. :) I used to commute on a very busy stretch of highway years ago and got some good feedback from my co workers that would pass me in their cars. They all said the flashing red LED tail lights and reflective jacket were great. They could see me a mile away, literally. But road conditions are important too. I went down more than once on icy roads and was just lucky no one was driving by at the time. I think alot of people take for granted that a motorist will see you, bad assumption. I guess it all boils down to having enough common sense to preserve your life, but still have fun. I cant for the life of me understand what this 46 year old man was thinking riding against traffic and no lights.(I would be scared to death to do that) He put himself in harms way, and even endangered others. Very sad.
     
  6. Reid2

    Reid2 Member

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    I wear my yellow 3M brand reflective stripe shirt,
    it's an unfortunately looser fit than I'd like,
    but when I wear that shirt, especially at night,
    all the cars give me tons of passing room.
    Lights and loud clothing are a help, I find.
    If I wear a dark shirt, I get passed by much more closely,
    and often on such a ride, some car will cut me off, zoned out.

    Was that a road bike? Was he in the usual crouch, head down,
    and not thinking...
     
  7. Conniebiker

    Conniebiker New Member

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    This doesn't require snow or night to happen either. Tragic indeed, but I was riding on the wide shoulder of part of my daily commute a couple days ago and almost got picked off by a plow truck with no snow on the ground and 50 deg outside and in daylight! It was a wing-plow that was retracted and the truck was over to the yellow line but his wing overhung the white line considerably. Came within 1-2 feet of my head and I was well into the shoulder. Total surprise, though the truck could have been more conscientious of his edge and the fact there was no oncoming traffic to prevent a deviation. Amazing more mailboxes don't get picked off...

    That is so sad that he had a family left behind. I know my family of all levels would have my hide if I rode without a headlight, regardless of tactics.

    In night use though, I use a yellow or hot pink coat and every flash device I can. Recently I even added reflector tape on the rim edges and crank arms and fork stanchions. Up front is a Niterider 15w and for backup I have a LED light that clips in. A good headlight is nice to flip the oncomers to lowbeams too /img/vbsmilies/smilies/cool.gif
     
  8. Froze

    Froze Well-Known Member

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    Without a doubt the rider was an idiot, unfortunately most cyclists don't ride safe...there I go again starting another wild fire. But I stand behind what I said. I've been riding for over 40 years, been driving cars for over 40 years, in all sorts of cities in several different states and I see a large percentage of cyclists riding like idiots, running stop signs, traffic lights, turning when their suppose to be stopped, jerking right in front of cars without bothering to ever signal, squeezing their bike between the curb and a car failing to see the car had it's turn signal on, drafting within a foot of another car; riding on a crosswalk at 20mph against the walk light, and what are bicycle lights? We don't need no stinkin lights! At least that's what most cyclists believe, nor do they believe in reflectors.

    It's sad that someone lost their life due to their negligence. But a drunk driver lost his life one night when he failed to stop for a stop sign and I nailed him through the drivers door at 60mph, fortunately that time it wasn't the sober person getting killed and the drunk living. To bad his 16 year old daughter who wasn't with him, thankfully, no longer has a dad, too bad the dad was such an idiot with no regard for his daughter...or a total stranger. Amazingly I wasn't even hurt despite being in a car with no airbags, but I had my seat belt on...I did have a shoulder belt bruise for a few days; both of our cars were torn apart as one can only imagine.

    We're all responsible for our own safety, we're also responsible for the safety of others. When we're riding our bikes we need to obey the same laws cars do, we need to be lit up at night, and when driving a car don't drive impaired even the least bit.

    I've said too much.
     
  9. Damien Lee

    Damien Lee Active Member

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    Yeah, the title of this post is a bit misleading but I get the point you're trying to make. The biker is definitely the guilty party in this case. Given that he is not a responsible individual, I would take it that he probably didn't maintain his bike either. It's terrible what happened but we can all learn from this accident.
     
  10. sharkantropo

    sharkantropo Member

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    Such a tragedy, now everyone pay heed to road rules after something horrible happens. But Authorities said it was very dark outside and the man didn’t have any lights on his bike, therefore under these terms He was almost just having a death wish.
     
  11. Gnufrau

    Gnufrau Active Member

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    I see so many ninjas around here that it scares me. (Ninja is a rider in dark colours after dark with no lights) Having been hit on a well lit bike (for the era. This *was* 26 years ago), riding with traffic, with plentiful reflectors, and the driver did not even slow down after hitting me... I now ride with a high power dynamo lighring system, and flashing lights on all bags attached to the bike. Always with traffic, and obeying all traffic regulations. I see so many riders that seem to have no regard for traffic laws. Do they not know that that makes them impossable to track, as well as creating a bias against all riders, even when we do follow the laws. Riding with traffic is simple physics: if you are riding with traffic, then your speed is suptracted in a collision. Riding against, it is added. Did no one else pass basic physics in school?
     
  12. Corzhens

    Corzhens Well-Known Member

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    Over here, riding in the dark of the night with no lights is suicide. Especially when there is not much traffic, reckless drivers are on the loose, reason for the frequent road accidents from 1am to 4am because the roads are not clogged and vehicles can run fast. Another thing with the counterflow riding, it is again an indication of suicide. And I agree that having no lights and riding against the flow is an accident waiting to happen.

    When I started riding, the first things on my mind is not the enjoyment I would get in riding but the safety and protection that I could give to myself.
     
  13. AryaSnark

    AryaSnark New Member

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    I never drive at night without lights, and I avoid roads after sunset, so I guess I'm on the safe side? I don't have reflective stripes, but I guess I'll have to buy some now I'm going to cycle in a city on a regular basis.
     
  14. erook7878

    erook7878 Member

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    You got to have reflectors or lights at night. That is pretty standard. Regardless, it's extremely sad and unfortunate accident that could have been avoided.
     
  15. AryaSnark

    AryaSnark New Member

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    @erook7878 Yes, I always use both at night. I still sometimes wonder if I did everything necessary in terms of safety? Like, I used to ride without a bike helmet until two years ago, when I started regularly cycling in the city (it's the result of my upbringing, almost nobody in my home village uses a helmet when riding), but reading people's opinions on the 'net changed my mind on this.
     
  16. erook7878

    erook7878 Member

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    Same here with the bike helmet. I've been using a helmet for years now, but I remember as a kid, I never wore a helmet. It wasn't cool to wear a helmet. I'm fortunate I never got seriously hurt as a kid.
     
  17. cyclenthusias44

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  18. cyclenthusias44

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    Well, you should fit the reflectors and I guess you would be safe.
     
  19. AryaSnark

    AryaSnark New Member

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    In my childhood days it wasn't even a question of coo/uncool or fashion, just that nobody wore helmets and mostly wasn't aware they exist. Adults didn't wear helmets too, and up to today, older people never wear one while cycling. AFAIK only people under 50 are catching up with this, and fortunately, children are now taught to wear helmets.
     
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