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Safety advice for new riders?

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Safety advice for new riders?

Old 03-03-22, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels
Some of you old riders need help.
Riding in my neighborhood man pushing a stroller at an intersection LOOKED Directly at Me then Pushed The Stroller into my Path.

Coming at it from the other direction, drivers I could have sworn were looking right into my eyes drove in a manner that made clear they did not "see" me. This has happened on a bike and on foot. Add to this that tinted windshields make actually seeing someone's eyes accurately problematic, and I'm just flummoxed by people putting much stock in this being any kind of indicator of attention.

I can tell if the driver is looking forward, and it's definitely a red flag if they are not, but I think we're kidding ourselves of we think we can tell if they're paying attention.
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Old 03-03-22, 03:08 PM
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Be careful out there!
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Old 03-03-22, 05:59 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels
Some of you old riders need help.
Riding in my neighborhood man pushing a stroller at an intersection LOOKED Directly at Me then Pushed The Stroller into my Path.
You are imagining that other people would have a problem handling this sort of situation.
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Old 03-03-22, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels
Riding in my neighborhood man pushing a stroller at an intersection LOOKED Directly at Me then Pushed The Stroller into my Path.
OMG! Pedestrian dares to look at vehicle operator to verify that vehicle operator will comply with rules of road.
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Old 03-03-22, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by UniChris
OMG! Pedestrian dares to look at vehicle operator to verify that vehicle operator will comply with rules of road.
yes someone forgot who has the right of way must have thought they were in a car.
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Old 03-03-22, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by fooferdoggie
yes someone forgot who has the right of way must have thought they were in a car.
The irony!

The only way not being in a car could have confused it is if I guess if the pedestrian forget they weren't... because if they were in a car, they wouldn't have had the right of way, vs being on foot, they would...
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Old 03-03-22, 08:31 PM
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Remember if the sun is low in the sky and at your back, it is shining in the eyes of oncoming traffic.
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Old 03-04-22, 12:27 AM
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Originally Posted by UniChris
OMG! Pedestrian dares to look at vehicle operator to verify that vehicle operator will comply with rules of road.


Pedestrians have the right of way in a crosswalk but not before it (depending on traffic control). That is, they aren't "complying" if they are stepping in front of vehicles without giving those vehicles enough room to stop.

Even when they have the right of way, it would be stupid not to take due care to keep from being hit.
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Old 03-04-22, 12:31 AM
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Originally Posted by fooferdoggie
yes someone forgot who has the right of way must have thought they were in a car.

Pedestrians don't have universal right of way. We don't know that the pedestrian in this case was in the crosswalk.

In any case, you are supposed to yield your right of way to try to avoid being hit. (Risking getting hit to maintain your right of way is just dumb.)
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Old 03-06-22, 05:02 PM
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Originally Posted by njkayaker

Pedestrians don't have universal right of way. We don't know that the pedestrian in this case was in the crosswalk.

In any case, you are supposed to yield your right of way to try to avoid being hit. (Risking getting hit to maintain your right of way is just dumb.)
Agreed. I have friends who just walk into a crosswalk without even looking, and when I call them out for being dumbasses they say "the cars have to stop!" Yea? And what if, just if, one of those cars is driven by someone careless and they don't stop? I know the grim reaper won't give anyone a "get out of death free" card over that lol
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Old 03-06-22, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions
Coming at it from the other direction, drivers I could have sworn were looking right into my eyes drove in a manner that made clear they did not "see" me. This has happened on a bike and on foot. Add to this that tinted windshields make actually seeing someone's eyes accurately problematic, and I'm just flummoxed by people putting much stock in this being any kind of indicator of attention.

I can tell if the driver is looking forward, and it's definitely a red flag if they are not, but I think we're kidding ourselves of we think we can tell if they're paying attention.
As I said at the start, it’s not fool proof. However, humans communicate with their eyes. Yo can tell fro someone’s eyes whether they see and acknowledge you. If you can establish that much contact it definitely improves your chances.

Operating a car, in an ambiguous situation as to who’s got the right of way, do you not look at the other driver for clues as to their likely actions? I don’t see a difference, other than the stakes are higher when they’re in a car and you’re on a bike
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Old 03-06-22, 05:59 PM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh
As I said at the start, it’s not fool proof. However, humans communicate with their eyes. Yo can tell fro someone’s eyes whether they see and acknowledge you. If you can establish that much contact it definitely improves your chances.

Operating a car, in an ambiguous situation as to who’s got the right of way, do you not look at the other driver for clues as to their likely actions? I don’t see a difference, other than the stakes are higher when they’re in a car and you’re on a bike

Making "eye contact" across an intersection is a lot more than just looking at the driver trying to see if and where they're looking. I don't think I communicate directly this way routinely, and I'm quite sure trying to do so would draw my attention from a lot of other things I need to scan before proceeding into an intersection. And I think there's a whole lot of external indicators of what a driver is going to do that are lot more reliable than my guess as to whether the driver is looking into my eyes.
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Old 03-06-22, 06:04 PM
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trust your intuition
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Old 03-06-22, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions
Making "eye contact" across an intersection is a lot more than just looking at the driver trying to see if and where they're looking. I don't think I communicate directly this way routinely, and I'm quite sure trying to do so would draw my attention from a lot of other things I need to scan before proceeding into an intersection. And I think there's a whole lot of external indicators of what a driver is going to do that are lot more reliable than my guess as to whether the driver is looking into my eyes.
so just ignore the drivers you interact with, hope that works out for you.

I tired to give some advice here that has worked for me for 50 years, and is widely accepted by experienced cyclists. Yet it being A&S, someone has to nitpick to score points.

Congratulations, you’re king of A&S. Enjoy.
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Old 03-07-22, 06:02 AM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh
so just ignore the drivers you interact with, hope that works out for you.

I tired to give some advice here that has worked for me for 50 years, and is widely accepted by experienced cyclists. Yet it being A&S, someone has to nitpick to score points.

Congratulations, you’re king of A&S. Enjoy.
Wow, making up something stupid like "ignore the drivers" and putting it in my mouth is obnoxious and dishonest. As far as I'm concerned, it's an admission on your part that you see my point and can't stand to admit I'm not wrong just because I disagree with you. If anyone is playing "king of a&s" here, it's you. And what makes you think you have any more experience than I do?

Establishing "eye contact" is pretty extreme and too iffy to put much stock in it. I've never had a problem making sure the opposing driver in an intersection sees me, and we've been able to avoid running into each other. Sorry if I'm not doing this in a way that establishes a personal relationship with them.

ETA--BTW, I just checked, and this started (post 19) because you "highly" disagreed with a statement by10 Wheels that eye contact doesn't mean enough to be relied on. You didn't just "give advice" you were arguing with someone else's advice from the start. Now you pretend this was just me jumping in to disagree, and I'm calling BS on that. And I'm pretty sure 10 Wheels has as much cycling experience as anyone on this forum.

Last edited by livedarklions; 03-07-22 at 07:48 AM.
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Old 03-07-22, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by rybin
Agreed. I have friends who just walk into a crosswalk without even looking, and when I call them out for being dumbasses they say "the cars have to stop!" Yea? And what if, just if, one of those cars is driven by someone careless and they don't stop? I know the grim reaper won't give anyone a "get out of death free" card over that lol
Especially nowadays when people are seemingly looking at their phones more than the road. This has become such a problem in today's world, not as uncommon as some would think...

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Old 03-07-22, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by BTinNYC
Find the local bike paths and/or least trafficked roads.
But be aware that bike paths (aka Multi Use Paths) are full of outdoor enthusiasts of all ability and etiquette levels: cyclists, runners, walkers, skateboarders, rollerbladers, dog walkers with long leads, children, children on bikes, children on scooters, adults on scooters, as well as those deafened by headphones. All of which that unintentionally treat a path like the lawless wild-west, and are much less predictable than those on the roads. Don't become complacent on the paths. Expect the unexpected. People in front of you WILL stop and do a 180° U-turn without any notice at all, and hopefully you're not passing them at the time. People WILL cross the center line to avoid a puddle on their side and come head-on into you. Paths are less deadly than roads, but are prone to more crashes.
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Old 03-07-22, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Riveting
But be aware that bike paths (aka Multi Use Paths) are full of outdoor enthusiasts of all ability and etiquette levels... Expect the unexpected. People in front of you WILL stop and do a 180° U-turn without any notice at all, and hopefully you're not passing them at the time. People WILL cross the center line to avoid a puddle on their side and come head-on into you. Paths are less deadly than roads, but are prone to more crashes.
As with most settings, this depends so much on user behavior. And indeed, it's worth keeping in mind that in most cases the consequences are a very bad day, though fatalities are possible.

Almost no paths suit a true, sustained effort road ride; sure, there may be sections where you can crank it, but even at a low traffic hour there are going to be moments when you can't - as I'd like to remind the paceline of two who urgently called a pass on a decent when I was left of the centerline because there was a huge pothole on the right side of the otherwise empty path.

But with a good, mutually aware user community, a path actually can be comfortable at a high travel volume - and I'm lucky to live in an area where that's true. The key ingredient seems to start with normalizing bell usage as a notification rather than a request - you ring your bell to let pedestrians and the occasional slower cyclist know that you are passing, but you have to wait for an opportunity to use the oncoming lane to make the actual pass. Add to that scanning far ahead - if you see someone walking one or more dogs, you try to get their attention early, and locally most are really great about reeling them in. And then contextual pacing, so for example, coming up behind pedestrians when I can see others oncoming, the question is if it's possible to pass the ones on my side before reaching those on other, or if it's going to be necessary to slow down and stay behind the walking group until we're both clear of the oncoming one.

The peak danger of paths is probably the intersections. These are just about always drastically worse than the situation of already being on the road. But, if the intersections are sparse compared to the distance covered, it can still be a win. Where things are denser, there are path segments that I do choose to bypass on roads.
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Old 03-07-22, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Riveting
. Paths are less deadly than roads, but are prone to more crashes.
Citation needed. I suspect the "more crashes" stuff is nonsense unless you're including single-track/rough terrain.
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Old 03-07-22, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions
Citation needed. I suspect the "more crashes" stuff is nonsense unless you're including single-track/rough terrain.
I do agree that mtb singletrack is where I have the vast majority of my crashes/falls, all of which are solo (unless you include the tree). It's not a question of IF I'll come home bleeding, the question is "from how many places?", although many of my crashes/falls occur at 2-4 mph while doing slow technical uphill terrain, while pushing the limits of my root/rock avoidance and balancing skills. But I was NOT including mtb in my "more crashes" description of paths. I'm purely talking a paved multi use path (MUP)

I'm VERY pro-MUP. In fact I did a 325 mile ride in 24 hrs on a bike path in RI, and I ride at least a section of MUP (if not the entire ride) on pretty much every ride I do here in Denver, where there's many 100's of miles of MUP. But in my experience here and elsewhere, a heavily used multi use path in a scenic area on a Sunday afternoon is where I experience dozens of "near miss" collisions just on a 2-3hr ride, which is orders of magnitude more instances than on a pure road ride of equal duration. I just wanted to point out that a MUP is far from a cycling utopia, and requires (in my opinion) FAR more vigilance than riding on the road, because many users of the path are less situationally aware than drivers are. Nobody has to pass a test to be allowed on the MUP, they'll let any idiot on them, I'm living proof of that.

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Old 03-07-22, 02:35 PM
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Originally Posted by rybin
Agreed. I have friends who just walk into a crosswalk without even looking, and when I call them out for being dumbasses they say "the cars have to stop!" Yea? And what if, just if, one of those cars is driven by someone careless and they don't stop? I know the grim reaper won't give anyone a "get out of death free" card over that lol
When I was a kid my father put it clearly - "Just 'cuz they're supposed to doesn't mean they will"...
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Old 03-07-22, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Riveting
I do agree that mtb singletrack is where I have the vast majority of my crashes/falls, all of which are solo (unless you include the tree). It's not a question of IF I'll come home bleeding, the question is "from how many places?", although many of my crashes/falls occur at 2-4 mph while doing slow technical uphill terrain, while pushing the limits of my root/rock avoidance and balancing skills.

I'm VERY pro-bikepath. In fact I did a 325 mile ride in 24 hrs on a bike path in RI, and I ride a multi use path (MUP) on pretty much every ride I do here in Denver, where there's many 100's of miles of MUP, but in my experience, a heavily used multi use path in a scenic area on a Sunday afternoon is where I experience dozens of "near miss" collisions just on a 2-3hr ride, which is orders of magnitude more instances than on a pure road ride of equal duration. I just wanted to point out that a MUP is far from a cycling utopia, and requires (in my opinion) FAR more vigilance than riding on the road, because many users of the path are less situationally aware than drivers are. Nobody has to pass a test to be allowed on the MUP, they'll let any idiot them, I'm living proof of that.
I'm not sure I disagree with much of that, if any. I just think behavior on roads is worse than you do, perhaps.

I think you have to be situationally aware on a path , but where I think your statements are a bit naive is that I see all sorts of unpredictable, situationally unaware behavior from all kinds of traffic (drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, skateboarders, loose dogs, car doors, you name it) on roads. Any idiot can cross a road, too, and a lot of idiots can get drivers licenses. Also, the combination of potholes and motor vehicle traffic is where I find the most unpredictability occurring on a regular basis, and that's basically something I don't ever have to deal with on a path.

There's another systematic factor you don't have to deal with on a path. Drivers generally exceed the speed limits. There's a lot fewer very heavy objects that are moving too fast to avoid flying around on bike paths.
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Old 03-07-22, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions
I see all sorts of unpredictable, situationally unaware behavior from all kinds of traffic (drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, skateboarders, loose dogs, car doors, you name it) on roads.
Sure, there's video out today of a bus driver on Staten Island attempting to pass a gigantic stationary dumptruck with negative 18 inches of clearance. A stationary dump truck! At least 12 seriously injured.

Also, the combination of potholes and motor vehicle traffic is where I find the most unpredictability occurring on a regular basis, and that's basically something I don't ever have to deal with on a path.
Sadly, I have had to deal with the combination of impatient, situationally unaware path users trying to overtake while I was trying to negotiate severe paving issues. To be blunt about it, the people trying to pass in those inopportune spots on the path exhibited much less caution than the overwhelming majority of drivers. Though sure, being hit by them would have been more survivable.

There's another systematic factor you don't have to deal with on a path. Drivers generally exceed the speed limits. There's a lot fewer very heavy objects that are moving too fast to avoid flying around on bike paths.
Actually many MUPs are notorious for having a speeding problem. It's just that the speeding vehicles (relative to either conditions or literal signage) have two wheels.

In some areas, MUP use is for the most part very cooperative and orderly.

In others, it's not - and ironically, the lack of danger from cars likely has a lot to do with the bad behavior. A subgroup of cyclists with poor judgement who'd think of themselves as victims out on the road become instead the bullies when there's no bigger, faster, more threatening, top dog they have to fear. Meanwhile pedestrians confuse the lack of cars for a lack of traffic and behave with no awareness of others.

Fortunately I'm lucky to live right off a very well behaved MUP, so I really do believe in the concept - it's wonderful for more family oriented cycling and as a way to reach some of the nicer road rides, plus our local roadie cycling group does their best to avoid it except where there's little choice, and recognizes it for what it is when using those specific parts.

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Old 03-09-22, 02:46 AM
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Terrible

Originally Posted by work4bike
Especially nowadays when people are seemingly looking at their phones more than the road. This has become such a problem in today's world, not as uncommon as some would think...

https://youtu.be/2QNjlfq3nXs
hard to watch. Maybe they will start just sending you a video in your mail and verify you speeding with plates and a ticket. Distracted driving lately is scarey . I saw a lady other day pass me with her phone in hand and looking at it.
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Old 03-09-22, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by rossiny
hard to watch. Maybe they will start just sending you a video in your mail and verify you speeding with plates and a ticket. Distracted driving lately is scarey . I saw a lady other day pass me with her phone in hand and looking at it.
You're not even safe on the sidewalk... Woman Hit by Car While Walking on Sidewalk
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