Safe commute?

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Murk, Mar 25, 2003.

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  1. Murk

    Murk Guest

    Just arrived at work after my regular commute along the A8 into Edinburgh. Traffic was at a
    standstill this morning so I was particularly pleased not to be in a car. The reason for the
    congestion was the presence of police cars and cones at the slip road on from the airport. I
    couldn't see any evidence of an accident but there was a taxi by the side of the road and
    (presumably) its driver beside it, talking to a police officer. Now in the office, a colleague who
    drove by the scene earlier told me he saw a bicycle lying in the road and there was an ambulance
    present. I'm not sure how I feel at the moment, angry, frightened or just depressed. I'll listen out
    for further details but an injured (I'll remain optimistic) cyclist is probably about as newsworthy
    as an injured Iraqi at the moment.

    M
     
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  2. The Mark

    The Mark Guest

    Murk wrote:
    > Just arrived at work after my regular commute along the A8 into Edinburgh. Traffic was at a
    > standstill this morning so I was particularly pleased not to be in a car. The reason for the
    > congestion was the presence of police cars and cones at the slip road on from the airport. I
    > couldn't see any evidence of an accident but there was a taxi by the side of the road and
    > (presumably) its driver beside it, talking to a police officer. Now in the office, a colleague who
    > drove by the scene earlier told me he saw a bicycle lying in the road and there was an ambulance
    > present. I'm not sure how I feel at the moment, angry, frightened or just depressed. I'll listen
    > out for further details but an injured (I'll remain optimistic) cyclist is probably about as
    > newsworthy as an injured Iraqi at the moment.
    >
    > M

    Someone mentioned this at work today but there was nothing extra to add. I just hope it's not
    too serious.

    This did spark off a discussion where all the drivers immediately assumed he must not have been
    visible, i.e. not wearing hi visibility clothing.

    Coincidentally the health and safety dept at work want all members of staff to wear a fluorescent
    vest while going between different buildings, there is a lot of traffic on site, but some of those
    who complained about cyclists not being visible have said they do not want to wear them.
    --
    Mark
     
  3. >Someone mentioned this at work today but there was nothing extra to add. I just hope it's not
    >too serious.

    One can but hope.

    >Coincidentally the health and safety dept at work want all members of staff to wear a fluorescent
    >vest while going between different buildings, there is a lot of traffic on site, but some of those
    >who complained about cyclists not being visible have said they do not want to wear them.

    Was the irony of this pointed out to them, I wonder?

    Cheers, helen s

    ~~~~~~~~~~
    Flush out that intestinal parasite and/or the waste product before sending a reply!

    Any speeliong mistake$ aR the resiult of my cats sitting on the keyboaRRRDdd
    ~~~~~~~~~~
     
  4. >http://www.edinburghnews.com/edinburgh.cfm?id=361292003

    Here's my personal paranoia coming out again (!) The report says, "A police spokeswoman said: "A
    cyclist heading for Edinburgh was in collision with a taxi on the A8 near the airport."" Sort of
    insinuates fault automatically to the cyclist - the cyclist was in collision with the taxi. Hmmm ...

    Cheers, helen s

    ~~~~~~~~~~
    Flush out that intestinal parasite and/or the waste product before sending a reply!

    Any speeliong mistake$ aR the resiult of my cats sitting on the keyboaRRRDdd
    ~~~~~~~~~~
     
  5. Graeme

    Graeme Guest

    [email protected] (wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter) wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    >>http://www.edinburghnews.com/edinburgh.cfm?id=361292003
    >
    > Here's my personal paranoia coming out again (!) The report says, "A police spokeswoman said:
    > "A cyclist heading for Edinburgh was in collision with a taxi on the A8 near the airport.""
    > Sort of insinuates fault automatically to the cyclist - the cyclist was in collision with the
    > taxi. Hmmm ...

    Knowing that bit of road it is fairly likely that the accident was due to the taxi driver coming up
    the slip road from the airport onto the A8. I've had a few near misses with taxis there, even when
    I'm driving a big silver estate car with a huge red open canoe on the roof! Having taken a taxi back
    from the airport more times than I can remember I've been on both sides of near accidents. I'm sure
    some of the taxi drivers just plough straight out of the slip road without looking.

    Graeme
     
  6. The Mark

    The Mark Guest

    wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter wrote:
    >> Someone mentioned this at work today but there was nothing extra to add. I just hope it's not too
    >> serious.
    >
    > One can but hope.
    >
    >> Coincidentally the health and safety dept at work want all members of staff to wear a fluorescent
    >> vest while going between different buildings, there is a lot of traffic on site, but some of
    >> those who complained about cyclists not being visible have said they do not want to wear them.
    >
    > Was the irony of this pointed out to them, I wonder?
    >
    > Cheers, helen s
    >

    Yes, but as usual with a lot of drivers they only listen to what they want to hear. The thing is I'm
    their supervisor and can discipline them for not wearing safety gear.
    --
    Mark
     
  7. Danny Colyer

    Danny Colyer Guest

    wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter wrote:
    > Here's my personal paranoia coming out again (!) The report says, "A police spokeswoman said:
    > "A cyclist heading for Edinburgh was in collision with a taxi on the A8 near the airport.""
    > Sort of insinuates fault automatically to the cyclist - the cyclist was in collision with the
    > taxi. Hmmm ...

    It says that the taxi and the cyclist collided - no more than that. Mind you, I think the
    journalist's wording is slightly better: "...after being involved in a collision with a taxi...".

    And I was quite pleased to see "A 24-year-old man on a pedal bike...", avoiding my personal bete
    noire of "pushbike".

    --
    Danny Colyer (remove safety to reply) ( http://www.juggler.net/danny ) Recumbent cycle page:
    http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/recumbents/ "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." -
    Thomas Paine
     
  8. Murk

    Murk Guest

    "Danny Colyer" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > wafflycathcsdirtycatlitter wrote:
    > > Here's my personal paranoia coming out again (!) The report says, "A police spokeswoman said:
    > > "A cyclist heading for Edinburgh was in collision with a taxi on the A8 near the airport.""
    > > Sort of insinuates fault automatically to the cyclist - the cyclist was in collision with the
    > > taxi. Hmmm ...
    >
    > It says that the taxi and the cyclist collided - no more than that. Mind you, I think the
    > journalist's wording is slightly better: "...after being involved in a collision with a taxi...".
    >
    > And I was quite pleased to see "A 24-year-old man on a pedal bike...", avoiding my personal bete
    > noire of "pushbike".

    Thanks for posting the news link, I would have done it myself but Google groups takes so long
    to update.

    Talking of paranoia, as I read the second paragraph describing four incidents in the same area,
    within an hour, I couldn't help but imagine some psycho-vigilante motorist gunning for anything with
    two wheels.

    Thank god that's not true.

    I've always been worried passing this slip road as traffic comes on but I wouldn't have thought
    there was much risk if I was using the slip myself. I do find it hard to imagine a situation where
    the cyclist would be at fault but I don't want to judge something I didn't see.

    Interestingly, on my way home that night I got more than the average number of horn blasts and
    gesticulations to "use the ****ing cyclepath" (which is actually a poorly maintained footpath with
    shared cycle access). I wonder how they viewed the incident which made them late that morning?

    M
     
  9. Matsav

    Matsav Guest

    "Graeme" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...

    <snip>

    >... I'm sure some of the taxi drivers just plough straight out of the slip road without looking.

    They _look_, they just don't _see_. There's a big difference between 'looking' and 'observing'.

    --
    MatSav
     
  10. Danny Colyer

    Danny Colyer Guest

    Murk wrote:
    > Talking of paranoia, as I read the second paragraph describing four incidents in the same area,
    > within an hour, I couldn't help but imagine some psycho-vigilante motorist gunning for anything
    > with two wheels.

    That looks like a cue to mention Spike Bike: http://members.aol.com/clubnbc/spike_1.htm

    --
    Danny Colyer (remove safety to reply) ( http://www.juggler.net/danny ) Recumbent cycle page:
    http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/recumbents/ "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." -
    Thomas Paine
     
  11. Since one of the Fife & Kinross DA members was killed,* when a Range Rover joining a very busy and
    fast dual carriageway, ploughed into him, in similar circumstances to the Edinburgh incident.

    Know how your enemy thinks...** As a motorist I know that the taxi driver would have been
    accelerating hard, looking over his right shoulder for a gap in traffic and not paying too much
    attention to what is in front of him as the cyclist slowly travels along the line of the slip road.
    Easily done.

    Learning lessons... When I am approaching a slip road to another road I am very conscious of what is
    behind me and what will no doubt overtake me to cut across my line of travel onto the slip road. The
    farther you are along the slip road the more danger there is. When crossing a slip road joining onto
    the road that I am on I am very aware of what is behind and to my left. If necessary I will turn to
    the left, cycling along the side of the slip road to re-join the road I was on. More importantly
    when a slip road is joining with the road that I am on I will turn left, when safe and cycle along
    the slip road so that I am not cycling across the slip road junction.

    All said and done, my thoughts are with they cyclists family.

    Wallace Shackleton. Kinross, Scotland.

    www.cyclekinross.org.uk

    * A 19 year old, just passed his test, driving Daddy's car.

    ** In this case the enemy is a money orientated (greedy) person whose standards have slipped from
    doing too much driving. When was the last time you saw a taxi driver being done for speeding?
     
  12. Tony Raven

    Tony Raven Guest

    wallace.shackleton <[email protected]> wrote:
    > Since one of the Fife & Kinross DA members was killed,* when a Range Rover joining a very busy and
    > fast dual carriageway, ploughed into him, in similar circumstances to the Edinburgh incident.
    >
    > Know how your enemy thinks...** As a motorist I know that the taxi driver would have been
    > accelerating hard, looking over his right shoulder for a gap in traffic and not paying too much
    > attention to what is in front of him as the cyclist slowly travels along the line of the slip
    > road. Easily done.
    >
    > Learning lessons... When I am approaching a slip road to another road I am very conscious of what
    > is behind me and what will no doubt overtake me to cut across my line of travel onto the slip
    > road. The farther you are along the slip road the more danger there is. When crossing a slip road
    > joining onto the road that I am on I am very aware of what is behind and to my left. If necessary
    > I will turn to the left, cycling along the side of the slip road to re-join the road I was on.
    > More importantly when a slip road is joining with the road that I am on I will turn left, when
    > safe and cycle along the slip road so that I am not cycling across the slip road junction.
    >

    Most of the slip roads round us have signs advising cyclists to cross the slip road at right angles
    and then ride along the left of the slip road back onto the main carriageway. In a perfect world you
    wouldn't have to but given that its not its by far the best option.

    Tony

    --
    http://www.raven-family.com

    "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable man persists in trying to
    adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man." -- George
    Bernard Shaw
     
  13. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    "Tony Raven" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...

    > Most of the slip roads round us have signs advising cyclists to cross the slip road at right
    > angles and then ride along the left of the slip road
    back
    > onto the main carriageway. In a perfect world you wouldn't have to but given that its not its by
    > far the best option.

    Something I worked out for myself about 14 years ago (cycling along the A174 to ICI Wilton). I
    tended to cross a lot later than the routes the modern signs encourage you to take, and I didn't
    slow down while doing so, but the general principle was the same.

    cheers, clive
     
  14. > Now in the office, a colleague who drove by the scene earlier told me he saw a bicycle lying in
    > the road and there was an ambulance present. I'm not sure how I feel at the moment, angry,
    > frightened or just depressed.

    Ugh.

    Slip roads are notorious. Personally I think the design of British slip roads is highly dangerous. I
    don't think any other country does them the same way.

    The problem is that instead of bring the slip into a lane of constant width alongside the other
    lanes, there is nothing but a tapering gore. There shouldn't be a gore at all, but there should be
    an accelaration lane to allow entering cars to adjust position and speed at leisure.

    The British design encourages entering motorists to just barge their way onto the main carriageway
    trusing to other cars to get out of their way. That's bad enough when the other vehicles *are* cars,
    but highly dangerous to cyclists.

    Forcing cyclists to make a zig-zag off the carriageway, the standard Brish "solution", is not
    acceptable.

    Jeremy Parker
     
  15. James Hodson

    James Hodson Guest

    On Fri, 28 Mar 2003 14:29:04 +0000, Jeremy Parker <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Slip roads are notorious. Personally I think the design of British slip roads is highly dangerous.
    >I don't think any other country does them the same way.
    >

    Hi Jeremy

    A quick question: What's a "tapering gore" (apart from a nicely healing wound)?

    I do agree with your comments about British slip roads. At busy times I'll often cycle up one slip
    road, around the roundabout and down the other slip road. Or course this slows me down, but better
    to arrive late than never to arrive at all.

    James

    --
    A credit limit is NOT a target.
     
  16. James Hodson asks me:

    > A quick question: What's a "tapering gore" (apart from a nicely healing wound)?

    Er, sorry. A gore is a longish, thinnish, triangular bit of something. A ploughed field might have a
    gore, because the field isn't quite square, or a skirt, or a parachute, might have a cloth gore, to
    make them come out the right shape.

    I suppose if it's triangular, it has to taper.

    Road engineers like to use the word, for their triangular bits.

    It seems to me that a lane either ought to exist, or not exist, not gradually taper into
    nothingness. The tapering, to me, sends out the
    psychological message: you have to get out of the lane **now**, even if you have to barge through
    all the other traffic to do it,

    Jeremy Parker
     
  17. James Hodson

    James Hodson Guest

    On Sat, 29 Mar 2003 11:57:32 +0000, Jeremy Parker <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I did indeed ask you:
    >
    >>What's a "tapering gore" (apart from a nicely healing wound)?
    >
    >Er, sorry. A gore is a longish, thinnish, triangular bit of something.
    >

    Thanks, Jeremy.

    --
    A credit limit is NOT a target.
     
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