Yeah, I'm not a fan of front and rear blinkies, but if it's dim out but not dark enough to use my generator lights, I'll use my rear battery powered blinky just to make myself that much more visible.There is good advice in that article. He mentions blinking lights front and rear and while this is good for the reasons listed, I often wonder if by doing that we are conditioning drivers to look for blinking lights and not seeing any assume there's no cyclist there.
There's a lot of science in how we see, but from what I've seen in the past 10 years, drivers putting the phone down would go a long way. Yesterday a car ran a stop sign to my left as I was in the turn lane turning towards the car. The driver was holding their phone up and looking at that. I think the passenger must have said something because the driver stopped in the intersection and I was able to safely pass. It seems that distracted is more deadly than how our vision has developed over time.
Indeedly. We cyclists should take responsibility for our own safety by being visible and attentive and so forth.Actually, more than that, make yourself visible. By adjusting our speed through intersections we make ourselves easier to be seen. That's a pretty big deal.
Yeah, ya gotta take snapshots with eyes in focus. They also call it "situational awareness." Not only do we actually see things, but observe their movements in relation to ours, and plan out escape strategies when collision appears imminent.In other words, don't just look; see.
Your accounts are interesting. They seem to say you expect cars to grant you the right of way, so you shout to make sure they know you're there and will let you proceed. :nono: That is the recipe for disaster, as you found out, right?That article describes exactly what happened when I was hit by a car.
A driver was sitting at a stop sign coming out of a parking lot. The MUT I was riding on crossed in front of her path. She was looking hard to her left for cars (I was coming from her right). I slowed as I approached because I could see she was not looking my direction. Just before I crossed her path, she looked directly at me (in my exact direction). I was about 5 meters off of her right front bumper coming towards her. 6' 5" riding a large bike, wearing a white helmet, blinky front light, and high-vis orange jersey. When I saw her look at me, I proceeded to cross her path at approximately 5mph. She looked back to her left and saw no cars, and accelerated just as I was in front of her right headlight. She never saw me. Punted me out into the street. Severely mangled shoulder, large 'bumper split' on my left knee. Fortunately, no serious brain or spinal injury. Took me nearly 7 months before I could sit on a bike again.
I hired a lawyer experienced with bicycle cases, he asked me if i thought she saw me. I told him she looked *right at me*. He asked again if I knew if she saw me. Of course I can't know without getting off the bike and conducting a personal interview and asking written permission to cross. His point was, bicycles are, or at least can be, completely invisible to motorists, even if they look in your general direction. Even taking precautions like blinking lights, light/bright clothing, etc... it's not enough.
Something I've started doing in situations like this is to shout loudly ("HEADS UP", or something similar). It's amazing some times the look on a drivers face when they don't realize you are there until they hear a voice that is right in front of them. That very thing happened to me today. It wasn't really a close call, but I was riding on a trail that crossed a road. The driver of a Prius approached the stop sign, which is there specifically to allow bike and foot traffic to cross. I was approaching from her right and could tell, that despite slowing, she had no intention of stopping. I slowed. If I hadn't, she might have hit me. As I approached her passenger side door as she went past, I shouted very loudly (YOU HAVE A STOP SIGN!!). Her head bolted over in my direction and she looked like she saw a ghost.
I take zero chances with these situations now. Any time I'm crossing a vehicles path that might believe they have a right of way absent of my presence, I make 100% sure that they know I'm present, and yield to me. Making a loud sound is helpful at time, although not always necessary. Most drivers do ok with this, but it only takes one who is distracted, or loses focus, or has a lot of other sensory input (loud music, children, pets, etc...) taking away from their focus for bad things (tm) to happen.
That's right. A voice from nowhere announces the presence of a person on a bike or motorcycle that driver better jam on the brakes and find out what WTF he missed. :shocked:The reason I use my voice in situations where driver has to yield to me, is exactly because I assume I am invisible to them. I'm not sure how you could interpret that otherwise?
Good advice well said. :thumbsup:My point is, I don't trust drivers to see me, even if I see them look in my direction. I want some kind of acknowledgement that they know I'm going to ride across their path while they are stopped. A head nod, a hand wave, something so I know they see me. If I'm not sure, I'll give them a 'Heads Up!' or something along those lines. If I'm still not 100% sure, I'll come to a stop and wait until I am 100% sure.