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Advocacy & Safety Cyclists should expect and demand safe accommodation on every public road, just as do all other users. Discuss your bicycle advocacy and safety concerns here.

View Poll Results: I think riding with an iPod is...
Unsafe anywhere 93 55.36%
safe when the volume is turned down 64 38.10%
I don't care what is going on around me when I ride 11 6.55%
Voters: 168. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-24-08, 11:46 AM   #1
Niobium Rocket
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Clueless with iPod


What is with the ever increasing number of cyclists that ride around totally obivious to their surroundings while plugged into their iPods. They hear nothing, are aware of nothing. How can think this is safe?

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Old 04-24-08, 11:51 AM   #2
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It depends on whether you wear a helmet or not!
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Old 04-24-08, 11:59 AM   #3
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I do not ride with an ipod, so I don't know how safe it is. I know many a road cyclist with lots of miles under their belt who wear ipods while cycling. Typically it will only be one ear, and they'll turn it off when there is a significant amount of traffic.

Generally speaking, if you oblivious to your surroundings, then you are not riding safely. However, I cannot comment on how oblivious one is of their surroundings while wearing an ipod. I imagine there is a continuum between safe and not safe depending on where/what conditions you use it, what volume, and whether you use both ear pieces or only just one.
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Old 04-24-08, 12:00 PM   #4
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Just out of curiousity, are you just trolling, or is there some specific reason you are asking this question?
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Old 04-24-08, 12:06 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Niobium Rocket View Post
What is with the ever increasing number of cyclists that ride around totally obivious to their surroundings while plugged into their iPods. They hear nothing, are aware of nothing. How can think this is safe?
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Originally Posted by ChipSeal View Post
It depends on whether you wear a helmet or not!
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Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
Just out of curiousity, are you just trolling, or is there some specific reason you are asking this question?
But whatta a successful troll! Look at the Whopper that took the first bite.
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Old 04-24-08, 12:14 PM   #6
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These 3 choices are not mutually exclusive of each other fully.
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Old 04-24-08, 12:27 PM   #7
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Is this legal in any states? I know it's illegal here in CA. I think it's a bad idea most of the time, but if I were on a long tour in the middle of nowhere I would be fine with it.
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Old 04-24-08, 12:29 PM   #8
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I don't like any of those choices...I ride with my iPod all the time, being aware is fairly crucial. For riding on bike paths, residential streets and the smaller city that I live in, it's no big deal. It's no different than someone listening to their stereo in their car at higher volumes.
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Old 04-24-08, 12:52 PM   #9
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The only time I use an iPOD while cycling is on a stationary bike.
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Old 04-24-08, 12:54 PM   #10
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Why ride with music? I love the sound of the rubber on the road.

Last edited by Snow_canuck; 04-24-08 at 12:55 PM. Reason: Typo!
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Old 04-24-08, 01:03 PM   #11
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wow, what a bad poll. Did you purposely word it that badly, or was it an accident?

Maybe I'll hop into the car free forum and start a poll:

I think driving a hummer is:

great
pretty cool
bad unless you use ethanol.
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Old 04-24-08, 01:20 PM   #12
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wow, what a bad poll. Did you purposely word it that badly, or was it an accident?

Maybe I'll hop into the car free forum and start a poll:

I think driving a hummer is:

great
pretty cool
bad unless you use ethanol.
Maybe the OP can start another poll about how only clueless jokers would ride a tandem and have stupid, distracting, unsafe chatter with their equally stupid, distracted and unsafe partner.
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Old 04-24-08, 01:25 PM   #13
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There are lots of people without headphones that are oblivious to their surroundings.

Anyway I don't ride with music.
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Old 04-24-08, 01:33 PM   #14
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Oblivious *******s with Ipods are a pet peeve of mine. I've had two run ins with morons who were completely unaware of their surroundings because of their Ipods. I am really glad I no longer have to bike on a college campus anymore, because Ipod zombies were all over the place there.

The first: I was on my way home, heading down a bike only path where people regularly reach speeds in excess of 35 mph. A jogger is going the wrong way on the gravel side of the path looking down at his Ipod. I slow down a little as people who walk on this path are unpredictable, but at the last second he decides he wants to get on the pavement, so he hops right in front of me, still looking at his Ipod. I swerved enough so that I only hit his face with my elbow instead of a full on collision. The idiot had the nerve to tell me to watch where I was going.

Second: I was headed to a class and I was just barely going to make it on time. I turned right and a guy on a road bike who was apparently on my wheel without me knowing slammed into my right chainstay, sending us both to the ground. I had crashed earlier that week and my knee was swollen and scabbed over, so of course I slid across the pavement on it. It is now permanently numb, thanks to this *******. My bike was messed up too- wheel out of true, handlebars bent, brake caliper bent(!), and a large dent in the frame. He tried to blame it on me, saying "Well you could have signalled the turn!" Then he admitted he didn't see me turn because he was choosing a song on his Ipod and then promptly took off without leaving me any info.

sorry for writing a novel.
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Old 04-24-08, 01:44 PM   #15
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It depends on whether you wear a helmet or not!
Exactly. If you're wearing a helmet then you're impervious to all harm anyway. Why worry about any additional risk associated with using an iPod? My main concern in that case would be getting an iPod skin that matched my helmet.

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Old 04-24-08, 01:58 PM   #16
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Second: I was headed to a class and I was just barely going to make it on time. I turned right and a guy on a road bike who was apparently on my wheel without me knowing slammed into my right chainstay, sending us both to the ground. I had crashed earlier that week and my knee was swollen and scabbed over, so of course I slid across the pavement on it. It is now permanently numb, thanks to this *******. My bike was messed up too- wheel out of true, handlebars bent, brake caliper bent(!), and a large dent in the frame. He tried to blame it on me, saying "Well you could have signalled the turn!" Then he admitted he didn't see me turn because he was choosing a song on his Ipod and then promptly took off without leaving me any info.
The roadie was 100% at fault (rear end driver/cyclist is always at fault), however if you weren't wearing an ipod, wtf happened to your situational awareness?

Just goes to prove that not wearing an ipod doesn't necessarily make you any more safe than wearing one.
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Old 04-24-08, 02:00 PM   #17
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Oblivious *******s with Ipods are a pet peeve of mine. I've had two run ins with morons who were completely unaware of their surroundings because of their Ipods. I am really glad I no longer have to bike on a college campus anymore, because Ipod zombies were all over the place there.

The first: I was on my way home, heading down a bike only path where people regularly reach speeds in excess of 35 mph. A jogger is going the wrong way on the gravel side of the path looking down at his Ipod. I slow down a little as people who walk on this path are unpredictable, but at the last second he decides he wants to get on the pavement, so he hops right in front of me, still looking at his Ipod. I swerved enough so that I only hit his face with my elbow instead of a full on collision. The idiot had the nerve to tell me to watch where I was going.

Second: I was headed to a class and I was just barely going to make it on time. I turned right and a guy on a road bike who was apparently on my wheel without me knowing slammed into my right chainstay, sending us both to the ground. I had crashed earlier that week and my knee was swollen and scabbed over, so of course I slid across the pavement on it. It is now permanently numb, thanks to this *******. My bike was messed up too- wheel out of true, handlebars bent, brake caliper bent(!), and a large dent in the frame. He tried to blame it on me, saying "Well you could have signalled the turn!" Then he admitted he didn't see me turn because he was choosing a song on his Ipod and then promptly took off without leaving me any info.

sorry for writing a novel.
You seem to crash a lot. Perhaps you should be more careful.
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Old 04-24-08, 02:40 PM   #18
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Dulling one of your senses intentionally can only decrease ones complete situational awareness.

Go ahead and argue how much dulling there is and if the resulting decrease is significant or not to be a safety issue. All that boils down to personal opinion.

The potential argument I see if one's visual situational awareness could be increased by replacing external aural information with planned/programmed noise, thereby compensating for the loss in aural environmental information. That's not an argument I'd make though.

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Old 04-24-08, 02:58 PM   #19
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Dulling one of your senses intentionally can only decrease ones complete situational awareness.

Go ahead and argue how much dulling there is and if the resulting decrease is significant or not to be a safety issue. All that boils down to personal opinion.
Uh Huh. And of course the clued in cyclist would never cycle unless feeling 100% rested and in tip top physical shape in bright sunshine only. Presumably any cycling with less than ideal visibility by a cyclist in perfect health is "a safety issue."

I suppose some might also argue that only a clueless cyclist would ride with the sniffles since the sense of smell might be diminished, or the cyclist's complete situational awareness may be blanked out during a sudden sneeze.
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Old 04-24-08, 03:03 PM   #20
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Uh Huh. And of course the clued in cyclist would never cycle unless feeling 100% rested and in tip top physical shape in bright sunshine only. Presumably any cycling with less than ideal visibility by a cyclist in perfect health is "a safety issue."

I suppose some might also argue that only a clueless cyclist would ride with the sniffles since the sense of smell might be diminished, or the cyclist's situational awareness may blanked out during a sudden sneeze.
Like I said, personal opinion. Without testing, only the person doing the activity can know how these internal factors affect them. Yes, there have been times I've cycled to work with a head cold and it did affect my senses. I did feel more out of it and less in tune with my surroundings. It did diminish my safety, but not significantly enough for me to not start the ride or stop during the ride.

Al
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Old 04-24-08, 03:07 PM   #21
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Like I said, personal opinion. Without testing, only the person doing the activity can know how these internal factors affect them. Yes, there have been times I've cycled to work with a head cold and it did affect my senses. I did feel more out of it and less in tune with my surroundings. It did diminish my safety, but not significantly enough for me to not start the ride or stop during the ride.

Al
You think it would have been insulting or ignorant if some Safety Nanny described you or your behavior as "clueless" for cycling with that diminished capacity for complete situational awareness?
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Old 04-24-08, 03:11 PM   #22
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I have ridden with an iPod and only on long isolated solo rides, but it is very rare, haven't yet this season (since Jan). I actually have a one eared pod phone for the purpose.

As to being distracted: what I really don't get is with all the wind noise, I can't hear anything behind me anyway. And unless the iPod is loud, it is difficult to hear it over the wind noise too. I suppose if you turn it up just loud enough to hear over the background noises, than you should be okay, and it shouldn't be an impediment to "hearing" safety. But every rider has his own comfort zone and opinion on using one.
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Old 04-24-08, 03:11 PM   #23
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You think it would have been insulting or ignorant if some Safety Nanny described you or your behavior as "clueless" for cycling with that diminished capacity for complete situational awareness?
I hope you are not accusing me of this. I don't think I have ever said such nor agreed with someone who did. If I have in the past I feel differently about it now.

Al
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Old 04-24-08, 03:28 PM   #24
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Maybe the OP can start another poll about how only clueless jokers would ride a tandem and have stupid, distracting, unsafe chatter with their equally stupid, distracted and unsafe partner.

Who said that there was any stupid, distracting, unsafe chatter on a tandem?
Would you be the on riding side by side in the bike lane blathering on with your buddy blocking the way for faster riders?
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Old 04-24-08, 03:34 PM   #25
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Uh Huh. And of course the clued in cyclist would never cycle unless feeling 100% rested and in tip top physical shape in bright sunshine only. Presumably any cycling with less than ideal visibility by a cyclist in perfect health is "a safety issue."

I suppose some might also argue that only a clueless cyclist would ride with the sniffles since the sense of smell might be diminished, or the cyclist's complete situational awareness may be blanked out during a sudden sneeze.
Well of course.

I also highly recommend a warm up period of no less then 30 minutes consisting of calisthenics and stretching exercises. This of course is followed up by a quick review of traffic training videos and a short chapter review of the appropriate cycling instructional manuals provided by the LAB.

Then I make sure the air in my tires is fresh by letting out that old air, and pumping in new fresh air.

Last I filter the water twice before putting in it my water bottle, and I always carry a spare filled bottle just in case disaster strikes while I am out there on the road.

Then I don my ANSI approved safety vest and my SNELL approved helmet, and my OSHA approved sun glasses before I jump on my Schwinn safety bike. Oh and don't forget the proper sunblock of at least an SPF of 20 (higher in the summer) and the gel equipped gloves.

Last, before leaving the driveway, I look carefully both ways and signal with 2 toots on the Airzounds before beginning my 2 kilometer trek.

Hopefully nothing will then go awry....
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