Traffic Light Poll

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

  1. graf zeppelin

    graf zeppelin New Member

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    I slow down and have a look around. I wont stop fully unless there is traffic near enough to warrant any caution at all, and I err more to the safe side. This is especially true on one route I take where at times another rider could have slid in behind me. I dont wish to encourage them to do the same when they might be a few second behind. Same goes for Stop signs.
     


  2. BLDR

    BLDR New Member

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    I stop at main intersections when the cars are everywhere! But at smaller intersections or pedestrian crossings, if I can, I'll go straight through. Not because I'm impatient but it's a huge waist of energy to stop and start again.
     
  3. cchs

    cchs New Member

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    Usually i stop and look around then go. Can't do it any more in my town. They made a law that says that cyclists are aloud to get tickets. :(




    Sorry 'bout the english
     
  4. b1_

    b1_ New Member

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    Always run them when I'm crossing the T at a T Junction, you just have to look out for pedestrians.

    If it's late at night and there's no cars I'll run them.

    Other than that I'm not too impatient and will obey the signals, they are there for our safety.
     
  5. b1_

    b1_ New Member

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    Yep there is that. It really bites when you have to stop on a down hill run, especially when you're on a particularly steep downhill and you have to exert all that energy pulling on the brakes just to get to a standstill.
     
  6. spokesgeek

    spokesgeek New Member

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    yes, sounds lovely! *sigh*

    to revisit the stoplight sensor issue, i recently tried to alter my commuting route so i could avoid making a left on a busy street during rush hour. to avoid the left, i would turn right ahead of the street i need to need at, make two lefts on ridiculously quiet sidestreets, and then go straight through the intersection i would normally turn left at.

    the last time i tried that, i waited over two minutes in rush hour traffic for a car to set off the sensor so that the light would change. to me, this is completely impractical and highly annoying. so instead, i have to revert to crossing two lanes in rush hour (inevitably ticking off motorists) and waiting for a break in the traffic streaming off the highway 200 metres away. :rolleyes: something's definitely wrong with this picture.

    that being said, i alwasy obey the stoplights.

    at stop signs, if i can see no traffic, i slow down and do a VERY thorough check. if i got a ticket i would argue tooth and nail for 'spirit of the law,' as i do a far more thorough traffic check than 80% of motorists i see.

    excellent thread, btw.
     
  7. Allison

    Allison New Member

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    Do a lot of people split lanes in stopped traffic? I've only been cycling for a few months, and when I did this the other day it occurred to me that it seems kind of dangerous.

    I generally stop at stop signs and red lights, although I have been known to blow through the occasional stop sign at a deserted intersection where I have good visibility.
     
  8. less'go

    less'go New Member

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    Here in Paris you'd be a fool not to, because there is no sense waiting behind exhaust pipes when you can cut to the front, get back in the bike lane and go. If you don't, you're a freak, because everything else on two wheels does it. It's expected.

    Whether or not to split lanes probably depends a lot on how traffic is where you live. It makes no sense to me to suck fumes instead of going to the front of the line, unless you'd rather just let everybody pass you first (I find that's often a good option, to wait a bit).

    Also depends on how thick traffic actually is. If there's some major jam, I would defend the notion that on a bike you have the right to make your way around obstacles, by whatever means necessary (I have ridden the occasional few yards of sidewalk, I'm not proud, but there it is).

    I do also run stoplights sometimes, it all depends. I certainly don't want to get hurt, so I try not to be too foolish.
     
  9. rek

    rek New Member

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    Yeah, I do it if there's enough space for me to get through. It's legal to do so here too, so long as the car you're passing isn't indicating and in the process of turning left (note: we drive on the left hand side of the road here)

    If it's only two or three cars though, I don't bother.
     
  10. 6fhscjess

    6fhscjess Member

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    I stop at lights but in my area most stop signs are on country roads so I slow and if it is clear I will go through.

    resound- gun control is a fallacy. It only controls the law abiding and allows the criminal element freedom and safety to go around robbing, killing etc. Your location is listed as Melbourne. If you check crime has increased in Australia since gun control was enacted. Also in the UK crime has increased. In a mall if only one person has a gun and starts shooting you have many dead people, but if many law abiding people are armed they will shoot the killer and stop the carnage. Also it makes a person stop and think before starting anything because they know the consequences to them would be severe. Most mass shootings if not all of them happen in gun free areas. Also the states in the USA with the lowest crime rates are the states with the least gun control. Nazi Germany believed in gun control. It leads to police and military states. If you do allot of research you will find that the promise of gun control advocates falls flat on its face in the light of reality.
     
  11. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    I got hit by a truck once when I had the right of way at a traffic light. The guy was slowing, as if to stop, but what he was really doing was looking at the cars approaching from the green light lane. When he knew he could beat them, he gunned it and attempted to make a right turn ahead of them. He didn't even look for pedestrians, including me, a cyclist. I flew about 10 ft, but walked away from it with a destroyed bike.

    As for following the rules, I had to go to court on that one. He lied to the police officer, and the cops ticketed me improperly. Luckily, a few people had walked up to me and given me their cards with phone numbers. Later, when I got the citation after my own protests to the cop, I knew I would call those witnesses. So this is a case in which following the rules got me in trouble. I successfully defended my innocence in court, but this is not justice either. The truck driver should have had the book thrown at him. It was a flagrant violation, and he may have killed a less agile pedestrian, like an old lady or little kid.

    I have new rules now. I don't cross the street in front of a car which has even the slightest opportunity to lurch into me, even if I have the right of way. Instead, I ignore the traffic signals, signs, and laws. The laws I abide by are the laws of physics, which means that if a car is not there, it can't hit you, no matter what the rules of the road might be. The traffic laws are not going to save you if the motorist violates them and crashes into you. And the authorities seem to believe the motorists more than the cyclists. So to hell with them all. I ride safely, not legally.
     
  12. JuneBug

    JuneBug New Member

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    YOu know what.

    I think that is the best answer I have heard of EVER. and I also think it applies to driving as well. Sometimes all your good intentions are not worth anything if someone else is trying to hurt you because he is late for work or had a fight .

    crazy world.

    :)

    stay safe. keep riding
     
  13. ozintokyo

    ozintokyo New Member

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    Have to agree - damn good attitude!

    ... ride safely, not legally.
     
  14. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    It's a good thing I didn't have to rely on this reasoning in court.:D
     
  15. TechJD

    TechJD New Member

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    only time I ever blow one is accidently
    other wise I wait
     
  16. Sleektabby

    Sleektabby New Member

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    I never go through them (unless there's something wrong with the light and it's not changing, that's happened around here).

    I don't go through them because a.) It'll just piss off car drivers to see me flagrantly disobeying a law that applies to me too. b.) There could be a cop waiting around the next corner ready to nab me!
     
  17. mingcat9

    mingcat9 New Member

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    at stops signs, I like the phrase 'yeild.' I pause, look around, listen, and then continue, if there aren't any cars.
    now, street lights...they're there because it's a high traffic area--there is always a car around...if it's red--stop. if it's green--GO!
     
  18. cd667

    cd667 New Member

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    I just use my judgement. Sometimes it's important to get away from the junction a couple of seconds before that impatient driver that's breathing down your neck.
     
  19. mikado

    mikado New Member

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    so true ! I ride in paris everyday and crossing red lights is a second nature. By that i mean I think about it like you would prepare a nice turning path in a downhill : you know how your bike acts and adapt the path in consequence.
    At a stop light, if i have good visibility, i see the 'clear' path and blow thru it.
    When the visibility is bad, Ii slow down a bit and prepare a 'stop path' ie a short turn to avoid the crossing road and better breakin, and once i get a good visibility, i blow. i only feel danger when i dont have a clean stop path.

    when i have to stop (yes sometimes i do ;) i always get in front of the lane and try to start before the vehicules. i find it very dangerous to be overtaken by a long line of cars just after a complete stop. They accelarate, they are close to each others, and i cant see them coming because I accelerate too ! thats no good to me !

    I also trust a lot eye contact : ill never cross in front of a driver that im not 100% sure has seen me. once they did, depending of speed / what i think the person will do, i cross or stop.

    To sum it up i think red light crossing is much about whats the trafic like in your town (paris is messy!), and the level of safety you want to keep while riding.
    My level might look low for the masses, but i know what im doing and what i can do if something go wrong, so i feel absolutely secure.

    ps: the weak point of my strategy is i also have to look behind me for cops ! but if u live in France you already know cops are dangerous !
     
  20. HellonWheels

    HellonWheels New Member

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    >>>

    What I hate is when they make us stop...its so much easier to stop and start in a car!
     
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