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Old 06-04-06, 05:57 AM   #1
JohnBrooking
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Please evaluate my illustrations

I've just created these illustrations to correlate riding positions with motorist line of vision, to illustrate the disadvantages of wrong-way and/or sidewalk riding. One important thing it shows, which was not obvious to me before I took a safety instructor training a few weeks ago, was that riding the wrong way on a sidewalk is even worse than riding the right way on a sidewalk, due to where drivers tend to look.

Please comment. The biggest weakness, in my opinion, is that the field of vision of drivers is very subjective, and I just sort of made up what I thought it would be, based on my own habits and not on any kind of scientific study. I also see a few other nitpicky things already that I should do differently, but I'll wait and see if anyone else says the same.

The following picture shows bikes riding with traffic, from either direction, on the street or the sidewalk. Notice the bikes in the traffic lane are more obvious than those in the sidewalk.



The next picture shows bikes riding against traffic, from either direction, on the street or the sidewalk. Notice the bikes coming from the right side are probably completely out of the driver's line of vision, and even from the left side, visibility is questionable.

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Old 06-04-06, 07:34 AM   #2
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Will this game be available for the Atari 2600?
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Old 06-04-06, 07:38 AM   #3
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In all seriousness...

Telephone poles, parked cars, other streetside objects further block the drivers vision. Could you illustrate that?

How about some real world pictures or video to back up the point you are making.
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Old 06-04-06, 07:39 AM   #4
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since the point of view is from forward of the front wheels the driver is obviously driving a 66 VW microbus which means he is about 55 and flying on Lexipro and Saw Palmetto, best to give him the right of way.
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Old 06-04-06, 08:33 AM   #5
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uh.. drivers should be looking both ways at crosswalks to check for pedestrians, anyway..
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Old 06-04-06, 09:43 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by velonomad
since the point of view is from forward of the front wheels...
--- Yeah, adjust the driver's POV as though the vehicle has a big honkin' hood sticking out front.
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Old 06-04-06, 10:12 AM   #7
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By your illustration, the driver isn't even looking ahead to where he is going and would thus drive into a cyclist right in front of him.

After many, many years of driving under my belt, I assure you that many drivers spend much of their time looking straight ahead, using their peripheral vision to pick up things from the sides and mirrors. Thus, the A-pillars become a problem for blocking visability of pedestrians and cyclists; yet that isn't indicated on your diagram. Even when looking both ways up and down the oncoming traffic lanes in an intersection to ensure it's clear before proceeding, the A-pillar still blocks visability, more than telephone poles do.
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Old 06-04-06, 12:07 PM   #8
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The main problem I see is predictability. Motorists don't consciously look for vehicles driving the wrong way down the street. When I drive, I don't.

A driver coming to the intersection you illustrate will instinctively look left, to look for traffic coming at him in the lane nearest to him, then look forward and slightly to the right, to see traffic in the far lane, then usually look left again right before he proceeds. But he's not looking for traffic coming from the right in the lane nearest to him.
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Old 06-04-06, 01:01 PM   #9
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Yes, San Rensho, that's exactly what these are supposed to illustrate!

Thanks for the feedback. I've added a dark gray line to indicated the "A pillar" blind spot (after looking up what an "A pillar" was - the supporting post between the windshield and the side window). I chose to keep the illustration simple, and so not include telephone poles, parked cars, and so on. They only make visibility worse, and this diagram seeks to show that it's bad enough even without them.

I've written a full narrative around them here.
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Old 06-04-06, 01:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TeleJohn
Will this game be available for the Atari 2600?
I'm working on a version to illustrate the safest path for frogs to negotiate across the road on dark rainy nights!

BTW, hello to a fellow Central NY'er. I'm originally from Massena, and my two siblings and their families live in your area!
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Old 06-04-06, 02:23 PM   #11
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Some cars have very thick A-pillars. They can easily obliterate a pedestrian crossing the intersection. Based on my experience, the angle of your dark line is incorrect (at least from where I usually sit in an automobile). Let's say the top of your map is North. From my experience, the A-pillar would obliterate a pedestrian starting to cross from north to south on the west side of the intersection, just as they're crossing the westbound lane. Your diagram probably assumes someone is driving very close to the steering wheel (I put my seat all the way back since I'm very tall); so the blind spot presented by the A pillar might vary from driver to driver, and even from vehicle to vehicle.

This would be why cyclists are advised to walk their bike across intersections. You could end up in that considerable A-pillar blind spot the moment the driver decides to make a left hand turn. Better to cross the intersection riding in the proper lane and avoid being in that dreaded A-pillar blind spot alltogether.
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Old 06-05-06, 04:20 AM   #12
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Thanks, DigitalQuirk. I really had no idea where to put the blind spot, I was just guessing from where I thought I would look. The place you indicate is not actually very well within my vision lines anyway, so maybe I'll just take it out but still keep a note in the narrative that it exists and could be anywhere. A driver should be checking everywhere within the intersection and crosswalks (a point I explain more on my web page), but my lines are meant to show where he/she will concentrate on looking for other cars.
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Old 06-05-06, 05:12 AM   #13
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I witnessed an accident as you described in the second picture. Guy was riding the wrong way on the sidewalk. He ran into a truck. He lived. Funny thing is I saw him a week later on a different bike doing the same thing. Two wrongs: sidewalks and against traffic.
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Old 06-05-06, 07:06 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnBrooking
Thanks, DigitalQuirk. I really had no idea where to put the blind spot, I was just guessing from where I thought I would look. The place you indicate is not actually very well within my vision lines anyway, so maybe I'll just take it out but still keep a note in the narrative that it exists and could be anywhere. A driver should be checking everywhere within the intersection and crosswalks (a point I explain more on my web page), but my lines are meant to show where he/she will concentrate on looking for other cars.
I'd say the A-pillar blind spot lies somewhere between 10 o'clock and 11 o'clock on your diagram. In other words, the cross walk across the intersection is going to be obscured. What happens is a sidewalk riding cyclist isn't seen by the motorist waiting to turn left (obscured by a pole, bush, etc.), then they pop into the blind spot at the exact same moment the motorist decides to make a quick left hand turn. When walking, you're not as apt to suddenly appear in that blind spot, though some peds have been struck by left turning cars that didn't see them as well. If you ride on the road (and in the proper direction), you won't end up in any dangerous blind spots to left-turning motorists.
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Old 06-05-06, 09:14 AM   #15
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Excellent starting point, and some improvements:

1. aside from blind spots, general view of field of vision should be straight ahead. Few drivers turn heads both ways before plowing into/thru intersections.
2. I would use a lighter white for straight ahead vision and then tad darker for head turning vision fields.
3. sidewalk is not apparent as sidewalk. I thought at first it was a bike lane. How about some trees, parked cars, line on concrete to make apparent it is sidewalk. Or, why not reverse coloring so colors are more typical. Black for road ways, grey for sidewalk, crosswalk lines should be on all 4 sides of intersection and standard, ie not looking like a ladder. You could use white and a # for each bike position.
4. The driver is seated too far forward, most drivers heads are not centered over the front wheels. Moving the driver back will make the angles steeper.
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