Traffic Light Poll

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by less'go, Jan 20, 2004.

  1. less'go

    less'go New Member

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    Sorryn not sure how this thing works.... Answers, please...
     
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  2. mmpc001

    mmpc001 New Member

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    If there are other cars around, or there are some approaching, I always stop and wait. If there's nobody around (like early on a Sunday morning), I'm still cautious and slow down but will many times continue on through. I use this same method with stop signs.
     
  3. stevek

    stevek New Member

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    I only go through when I know the light won't change for me. a few intersections are that one. this one that hardly has any traffic can have both sides red and it will just sit there and I am the only one. so Iwill go through.
     
  4. skillerv

    skillerv New Member

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    cars are powered and can stop easily therefore it should be them that stop for us. its alot easier for them to get up to to speed then us.
     
  5. JohnO

    JohnO New Member

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    Cars should stop for us, but they weigh 10x-30x our weight, so if they don't we come out on the short end of the deal.

    Unfortunately, this is a case where idealism can have a head on collision with reality. Literally.
     
  6. AvgTdFsizeguy

    AvgTdFsizeguy New Member

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    In NY our friendly police officers will ticket you for running a red light if you're not careful. Best to relax and let the messengers take their chances although if there's no one watching... What happens in "The City of Lights"?
     
  7. jmcmillanut

    jmcmillanut New Member

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    I think cyclists should be held to the same traffic laws as motorists. Hand signals, stopping at traffic lights, stop signs, etc. When a few cyclists disregard traffic laws, it makes us all look bad. Sure, cyclists have the right-of-way, but they shouldn't flaunt it. The only justifiable reason to go through a red light is when the traffic lights are not setup to detect cyclists.

    When you obey the traffic laws you will always be in the right. If some dumbass hits you, you will have legal recourse. If you are blasting through stop signs and traffic lights, good luck to you if you end up injured.
     
  8. bigfloppyllama

    bigfloppyllama New Member

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    Those are always a pain. Especially in rarely used left turn lanes. I always stop for lights and stop signs because I don't trust cars enough. I mean, if I'm there thinking nobody is around and I decide to blow the light/sign, what's the chance that a car is thinking the same thing. A few seconds of waiting isn't too much when my life could be in danger.
     
  9. stevek

    stevek New Member

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    in oregon we just have to slow down for a stop sign. I slow if i can see really well if not I stop or if cars are approching.
    but I always stop for stoplights.
     
  10. less'go

    less'go New Member

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    Wow, I'm kind of surprised to see so many who never, ever go when it's red. I can respect that, although I am definitely guilty of this infraction. 'Course I see cyclists who blatantly and literally blow through lights and i think that's a pretty bad habit to get into, not to mention it makes us all look bad.

    But I'm with the "creep through the lights" crew. In Paris it's somewhat dog-eat-dog in traffic, with everyone on two wheels participating in lane splitting -- meaning in stopped traffic, so long as there's room, you keep going on the left (or right) of a lane of vehicles 'till you get to the front of the line. It's dangerous, but when in Rome, it's safer to do what the Romans are doing than be a renegade safety queen.

    So then, sometimes just to avoid being passed up once again by all those cars I just flew by, I grill a light. I'm very cautious but see many who hardly even slow down before whizzing through. Sometimes I do it because there's just nobody around and I'm not going to wait. Or for a few other select reasons.

    Thanks for your answers, it's a pretty even distribution...

    Sara
     
  11. Mark Andrews

    Mark Andrews New Member

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  12. rek

    rek New Member

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    Agree 100%. We're just another road user, and should behave as such.
     
  13. less'go

    less'go New Member

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    Okay, I agree, but then again, I kind of think bicycles should be cut a little slack - after all, the rules of the road were designed for motorized vehicles. We're out there pumping along to get where we're going.

    I recently read that in some European countries there are more and more "cyclable" one way streets - streets that are one-way only for cars, but cyclists are allowed to use them both ways. Could save much time and effort....

    Anyone have an opinion on or experience with their local government adapting road rules especially for bicycles, in a positive way ?
     
  14. jmcmillanut

    jmcmillanut New Member

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    I had a friend that went to school in Corvallis, Oregon, home of Oregon State U. (go Beavers!). The laws and roads are very cyclist friendly. They have tons of bike lanes and bike/pedestrian-exclusive paths in that small city. The paths are sort of like the agricultural roads they have in Germany that are open to farm equipment, pedestrian, and cycle traffic. At intersections w/ bike lanes, the traffic lights are setup to detect cyclists (what a concept). They also have quite a few wide-shouldered roads going between Corvallis and other nearby cities. I've heard you can ride all the way to Portland if you want (that's about 70 mi or 113 km).

    Moab, Utah, and the surrounding area is also pretty bike friendly, and the local bike shops are very active in their chamber of commerce. For a rural town, they have loads of bike lanes, paths, and wide shoulders that take you to both Arches and Canyonlands National Parks. Additionally, you can access some spectacular slickrock/redrock mountain biking trails from the town.
     
  15. bikinchris

    bikinchris New Member

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    You might find it interesting that most traffic laws were originally designed by and for bicyclists. Now the bike riders think they are a nuisance.
     
  16. less'go

    less'go New Member

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    "You might find it interesting that most traffic laws were originally designed by and for bicyclists. Now the bike riders think they are a nuisance."

    I'm sorry but I have a terribly hard time believing that. Do you have any sort of documentation to back that up? By and for bicyclists? There were larger non-motorized vehicles, such as carriages and horses, using city streets and country lanes alike, long before the bicycle become a popular means of transportation. In fact, the bicycle as we know it today has only been around about 100 years, if memory serves. I know I can find lots of info on the history of the bicycle.

    Do I smell fresh Troll...?
     
  17. less'go

    less'go New Member

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    I do so hate to be a stickler, but a quick Google shows that you are, well, incorrect.

    http://www.dispatch.com/news/special/wheelsofjustice/woj1Eoldtrafficlaws.html

    Interesting quote from that site
    "Man hurts man with the automobile.
    Two months later, New York City motorist Henry Wells hits a bicyclist with his new Duryea. The rider suffers a broken leg, Wells spends a night in jail and the nation's first traffic accident is recorded. "

    Another link:
    http://www.snopes.com/autos/law/eno.asp

    Those are just the first two hits from Google, the list goes on and on....

    Happy reading.
     
  18. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    I think people (regardless of their means of transportation), should all be held to the spirit of the law rather than the more often enforced letter of the law. The idea behind traffic control devices at any intersection is to make passage through the intersection safe for everyone. If this can be accomplished without coming to a full stop, then who gets hurt?

    Of course it's impossible to draft a statute that forces adherence to such responsibility and applies equally to all existing and yet to be built intersections under all conditions. That's why we have the letter of the law and unfortunately, officers that can't seem to make the distinction.
     
  19. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    Perhaps part of the confusion here comes from the fact that different laws were enacted in different locations at different times for different reasons.

    Some laws were, undoubtedly, enacted to regulate bicycle traffic before the popularity of motorized traffic rose to a point which required regulation. Other areas, just as undoubtedly, required traffic laws for motorized transportation before a need was seen to regulate bicycles. I would suspect that many laws were originally enacted for horse/pedestrian traffic first, then later re-written to include other forms of transportation as each became popular enough to pose a hazard.
     
  20. less'go

    less'go New Member

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    Respectfully, beast, I maintain that the statement about most traffic laws being designed by and for bicyclists is without substance - surely bicycles were part of the picture, and some cyclists probably played a role in making them.

    But in the United States, atleast, traffic laws were by and large created to regulate other types of traffic than bicycles, and principally developed once motorized vehicles began to fill the streets.

    Of course I'm no historian, and if anyone has any information or links to the contrary, I'd be interested in looking. The links I noted in my previous post are chock full 'o' good information, none of which supports the bikers-made-most-traffic-laws theory.

    Sara

     
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