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rock n rolling resistance
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851 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was just watching a show on MSNBC regarding how different conditions drivers are under and how variety of different activities drivers engage while they are driving effect their driving ability/ reaction time.

They set up a course with surprise obstacals etc and made the drivers drive thru. All the drivers, including people who drives for their profession such as delivery drivers, real estate agents, etc, were all pretty much confident that they can handle driving while being engaged in variety of tasks without much problem as they do similarly everyday.

The result was they all failed pretty badly crashing into obstacals and swerving off the set-up course etc meaning they would've gotten into serious accidents to minimum fender bender in real situation. People who drank just a few drinks or had a few hours less sleep thought it would be no problem handling the drive thru the course but they thought wrong as their reaction times were all compromised...

The conclusion is that the only reason these people have not caused accidents so far is that they've been simply lucky, i.e., no one or thing (or cyclist) has been in their way and nothing unpredictable happened when they weren't paying attention so far...

As a roadie... although the thought comes across everytime I get on the road... I do it almost as a second nature. But after watching the show and hearing about more and more roadie involved accidents I am thinking this road cycling thing, having my back to these people/ average drivers, might be not much different then russian roulette... just matter of time/ luck................ am I stating the obvious?


some distractive things people do while driving I can think of...

being drunk
cell phone dialing
using GPS
looking up cell phone contact list
talking on the phone
text messeging
changing CD or radio station
lack of sleep/ doze
watching DVD
putting make up on
daydreaming
reach down to plug in cell phone car charger
jotting down (grocery list etc...)
lighting smokes
eating drinking... spilling
looking at map/ direction
reading
taking pictures
looking up actual phone books
on prescription pain killer

what else do people do....?
 

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Self-Banned
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16,905 Posts
6was9 said:
I was just watching a show on MSNBC regarding how different conditions drivers are under and how variety of different activities drivers engage while they are driving effect their driving ability/ reaction time.

They set up a course with surprise obstacals etc and made the drivers drive thru. All the drivers, including people who drives for their profession such as delivery drivers, real estate agents, etc, were all pretty much confident that they can handle driving while being engaged in variety of tasks without much problem as they do similarly everyday.

The result was they all failed pretty badly crashing into obstacals and swerving off the set-up course etc meaning they would've gotten into serious accidents to minimum fender bender in real situation. People who drank just a few drinks or had a few hours less sleep thought it would be no problem handling the drive thru the course but they thought wrong as their reaction times were all compromised...

The conclusion is that the only reason these people have not caused accidents so far is that they've been simply lucky, i.e., no one or thing (or cyclist) has been in their way and nothing unpredictable happened when they weren't paying attention so far...

As a roadie... although the thought comes across everytime I get on the road... I do it almost as a second nature. But after watching the show and hearing about more and more roadie involved accidents I am thinking this road cycling thing, having my back to these people/ average drivers, might be not much different then russian roulette... just matter of time/ luck................ am I stating the obvious?


some distractive things people do while driving I can think of...

being drunk
cell phone dialing
using GPS
looking up cell phone contact list
talking on the phone
text messeging
changing CD or radio station
lack of sleep/ doze
watching DVD
putting make up on
daydreaming
reach down to plug in cell phone car charger
jotting down (grocery list etc...)
lighting smokes
eating drinking... spilling
looking at map/ direction
reading
taking pictures
looking up actual phone books
on prescription pain killer

what else do people do....?

picking nose
 

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Zeppelin/Ultegra Rider
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930 Posts
6was9 said:
some distractive things people do while driving I can think of...

being drunk
cell phone dialing
using GPS
looking up cell phone contact list
talking on the phone
text messeging
changing CD or radio station
lack of sleep/ doze
watching DVD
putting make up on
daydreaming
reach down to plug in cell phone car charger
jotting down (grocery list etc...)
lighting smokes
eating drinking... spilling
looking at map/ direction
reading
taking pictures
looking up actual phone books
on prescription pain killer

what else do people do....?

Ever see "The World According to Garp?" Now, there's a distraction.
 

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Registered
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11,474 Posts
Some rambling thoughts.

am I stating the obvious?
In a sense you are. But as your interesting post shows, the obvious has a tendency to become painfully clear at times and then recede into the background again - probably because we want it to.

It's clear to me that I'm placing my life entirely into the hands of automobile drivers when riding on public roads. But I continue to ride in spite of many close calls. That tells me that I'm probably attracted to risk-taking behavior, and I'm sure I'm not alone in this. Still, it saddens and infuriates me greatly when I hear of another cyclist killed or injured by an impaired driver. Needless, senseless, avoidable, criminal, are some of the words that come to mind at these times.

I also do some kayaking. I know that I also take risks on the water, and like to do so. But these risks are usually not in sharp focus. Rarely, if ever, does a full-bore power boat pass within inches of your head. Problems on the sea develop slowly and often turn into disasters because of a lack of skill or insufficient preparation on part of the boater. If the sea does me in, it's probably entirely my fault. That, to me, would seem like a less senseless and tragic way to go than being mowed down by a fellow human being.
 

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The Right Wing
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843 Posts
Hmmm...

rocco said:
picking nose
Shaving
Arguing with NPR
Checking out Chica in car in next lane
Looking for sunglasses


Of course, I never dwell on this. Who do you think is minding the store at the nuke missle silo aimed at you right now? How about meteors heading our way? Bird flu? Cancer cells that could be replicating in our bodies right now? A virus that that girl from six years ago might have been carrying? Aircraft crashing from above? The presence/absence of an afterlife? The utter insignificance of our lives when viewed on a geologic timescale?

Just get out and ride.
 

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58 Posts
Mythbusters

Saw a similar experiment on Mythbusters over the weekend. They drove a course 3 times-- once as a control run with no distractions, second time while talking on a cell phone, third time after consuming enough beers to be just under the legal limit.

Both drivers passed the initial test, but failed the second two tests horribly. Pretty scary that the drivers were every bit as impaired talking on the phone as they were buzzed.
 

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n00bsauce
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13,507 Posts
Of course, I never dwell on this. Who do you think is minding the store at the nuke missle silo aimed at you right now? How about meteors heading our way? Bird flu? Cancer cells that could be replicating in our bodies right now? A virus that that girl from six years ago might have been carrying? Aircraft crashing from above? The presence/absence of an afterlife? The utter insignificance of our lives when viewed on a geologic timescale?
You forgot aliens.
 

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n00bsauce
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13,507 Posts
Although you are much more likely to be killed road riding (and I've had several injuries from being hit) the only injuries I've had that led to surgery have been from mountain biking. You get more dings and mechanical injuries from mountain biking but it's the big ones (encounters with 3,000# beasts) that will kill you. Ride long enough and something will happen to you on the road. Just ride smart, hope for the best and don't dwell on it.
 

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Unlabeled
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3,720 Posts
Take some bullets out before playing Roulette

You can play Russian Roulette with 5 bullets in the gun, or 1 bullet in the gun. If you make smart choices about where, when, and how you ride then your odds of living increase dramatically. There are many places and times when it's just plain stupid to mix it up with the traffic.
 

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rock n rolling resistance
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851 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Mel Erickson said:
Ride long enough and something will happen to you on the road. Just ride smart, hope for the best and don't dwell on it.
I do...

Of course there is risk in doing anything but it would be nice if my safety is a bit more in my hand and a little less precarious than "hope for the best"... It's just that this TV program made me think that our/ roadie's odds are only getting worse as the distractions for the drivers increase...
 

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rock n rolling resistance
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851 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
53T said:
The utter insignificance of our lives when viewed on a geologic timescale?

QUOTE]

The utter insignificance of a geological time scale when we are dead... ;)
 

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So quit riding. One less person to piss and moan about how threatened they feel when riding... :rolleyes:
 

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Big is relative
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11,887 Posts
Generations and location.

To say that drivers are more distracted is just a reflection of the current generation behind the wheel. The majority of the drivers out there are of the X generation (me) who want instant responses, hate the delay of driving somewhere, and will try to accomplish as much as possible while getting there. Not a justification, just an observation. I try to remember that when I am driving that I am responsible for my actions and as a cyclist, I try to think as a rider when drive in traffic.
I have lived on both coasts and find that drivers vary tremendously in the way that they encounter cyclists. My biggest issue out here in Hawaii is people turning right at intersections running the red light. Right on red is the law, but there is supposed to be a stop in there somewhere. The drivers don't even look.
I commute to work everyday and I am sure that at some point that I will get into some kind of accident with a car. I have been brushed twice and both times the driver stopped and apologized. I try not to think about being hit, I spend my time thinking about riding in a predictable way and being visible. I also assume that a driver will do the dumbest thing possible.
 

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Resident Curmudgeon
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11,979 Posts
The obvious cure is to stay off the roads. I'm guessing that very, very few of us would consider that an option. IMO, it's really a shame the way drivers allow themselves to be distracted. Multitasking on a computer isn't likely to kill anybody. Manufacturers keep building more bells & whistles into our cars, and I believe this is because motorists expect and demand it. With all the luxury items at our disposal, almost nobody wants to go back to life without them. Right now drivers are *****ing like crazy over the implementation of red light cameras and remote radar/laser systems. Why the hue & cry. Simple! They want to be able to break the law with impunity. They, along with almost everybody else in this country, steadfastly refuse to be held responsible for their actions.
 

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6was9 said:
I was just watching a show on MSNBC regarding how different conditions drivers are under and how variety of different activities drivers engage while they are driving effect their driving ability/ reaction time.

They set up a course with surprise obstacals etc and made the drivers drive thru. All the drivers, including people who drives for their profession such as delivery drivers, real estate agents, etc, were all pretty much confident that they can handle driving while being engaged in variety of tasks without much problem as they do similarly everyday.

The result was they all failed pretty badly crashing into obstacals and swerving off the set-up course etc meaning they would've gotten into serious accidents to minimum fender bender in real situation. People who drank just a few drinks or had a few hours less sleep thought it would be no problem handling the drive thru the course but they thought wrong as their reaction times were all compromised...

The conclusion is that the only reason these people have not caused accidents so far is that they've been simply lucky, i.e., no one or thing (or cyclist) has been in their way and nothing unpredictable happened when they weren't paying attention so far...

As a roadie... although the thought comes across everytime I get on the road... I do it almost as a second nature. But after watching the show and hearing about more and more roadie involved accidents I am thinking this road cycling thing, having my back to these people/ average drivers, might be not much different then russian roulette... just matter of time/ luck................ am I stating the obvious?


some distractive things people do while driving I can think of...

being drunk
cell phone dialing
using GPS
looking up cell phone contact list
talking on the phone
text messeging
changing CD or radio station
lack of sleep/ doze
watching DVD
putting make up on
daydreaming
reach down to plug in cell phone car charger
jotting down (grocery list etc...)
lighting smokes
eating drinking... spilling
looking at map/ direction
reading
taking pictures
looking up actual phone books
on prescription pain killer

what else do people do....?
Life = Russian Roulette? :)
 

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Big is relative
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11,887 Posts
wsexson said:
When did the baby boomers decide to stop driving? I wasn't notified!
Interesting point. I just completed a weeklong suction on my life (class) that discussed differences in the generations. Research has determined that the baby boomers (based on an end date of 1960) are more likely to follow rules and be less self centered. Looking at gen X, we tend to be more about "what have you done for me lately" and self centered. Lots of theories behind this such as television, single parent families, both parents working/latch key children, and the advent of the internet. We want it and we want it now. Stupid cyclist better not get in my way, I have to get to Starbucks before I drop the kids at tai kwon do/soccer/little league.
 
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