Hot answers tagged

93

I found this article which has some statistics on accidents involving wrong-way cycling: Table 4 shows that all categories of bicyclists traveling against the direction of traffic flow are at greatly increased risk for accidents—on average 3.6 times the risk of those traveling with traffic, and as high as 6.6 times for those 17 and under. This result is ...


87

For one thing, if you cycle with traffic the closing speed between car and bike is the DIFFERENCE in speed between the two. If you're doing 20mph and the car is doing 45, the closing speed is 25. Reverse it and the closing speed is 65 -- over twice as fast. This affects the time the driver has to react to the cyclist's presence -- over twice as much time ...


82

Oh... where do I even start? I love dogs, I am crazy about them, too. I have 3 labs of my own. I am from a place where street dogs are very abundant. If you don't see any dogs in the next 100 yards, consider yourself lost! :D I am barked at often, chased often, even confronted sometimes. I used to run away before, because it is what a normal guy does. I ...


76

After 50+ years as a cyclist, this is my approach - ride according to the conditions ride in reasonable proximity to the curb if safe, move over a little as traffic approaches know where I'm going, and do it assertively if somebody honks / shouts / waves, assume that they must be a friend, or are telling me something important, so smile broadly and wave ...


63

No. You should always ride with a white light facing forward and a red light facing backwards. If you want additional illumination, you can add multiple white/red lights in the appropriate direction. Amber/yellow lights can be used facing any direction for additional visibility. The first reason is that it's the law: (a) Every bicycle when in use during ...


56

In general, if a bike path (lane) is on a road, follow the direction of traffic on that road. If there isn't a bike path on the other side, then bike carefully in the road if permitted, or find a different route. If a bike path is separated from the road and there aren't directional signs, stay to the appropriate side of the bike path depending on where in ...


56

A quick search, however, shows other colors available to purchase. Concerning "to be seen" bicycle lights, should they be avoided? Yes, they should be avoided. First, off-colors might not be legal in your area. Second, and more importantly, no one will know what it is. If a driver sees a flashing red taillight, or what looks like a normal white headlight,...


52

Bicycle helmets contain crushable foam that works to extend the duration of impact by about 6 ms (milliseconds). This doesn't make the impact force disappear, instead it extends the duration of force experienced by the brain. By extending the duration, you reduce the peak force. The brain can withstand impacts to some degree, however if the impact is too ...


50

It's difficult to say without seeing photos of the road layout. However, if the road itself continues round to the left, you should indicate right when you're leaving it. In general, you should think about the topology of the road, rather than its geometry. It doesn't matter that you're following a geometrically straight line; you're still leaving the ...


49

As cyclists, we are vulnerable to any collision. A collision with a truck, bus, car, bicycle, pram, skateboard, rollerblader, pedestrian, dog, or even a domestic cat, will almost always cause a problem, if not an injury. Vehicle drivers are just people like us, except that they are in a comfortable safe box, maybe with crying kids in the back, and a have ...


44

BMXers in some places put the shoe between rear tire and frame, just where the rear brake normally is attached to the bike. I've never done that, because I used to run knobby tires (ouch!), and nowadays I care a lot about brakes. You really should avoid this situation, because many times there would not be much to do. I would guess, a good alternative ...


42

Most places will legally require you to run with white lights on the front and red lights behind. This is crucially important because it immediately tells everybody else on the road whether you're coming towards them or moving away. I once nearly hit somebody because they had a red light on the front of their bike. I saw that at the usual distance and ...


41

Bicycle mirrors are going fall into two basic categories- the type that you mount somewhere on your bike and the type that you mount somewhere on your head. Both categories have their pros and cons, but many of them are subjective. A pro to one individual may be considered a con to the next. Within those two categories you have a variety of different options ...


41

There is no one size fits all answer to this, except the first point below. When dealing with police, or other authority figures, always behave respectfully. Contact the people responsible for sweeping the road and ask when or if they are going to do it next. Maybe they only sweep when requested. Find out if there's a local bike advocacy group. They ...


39

The fork is fitted the wrong way around. The brake caliper should be in front of the fork, not behind it. The way it is, the bike will be very, very hard to ride because of the negative rake, making it very nervous. The negative rake is also the reason for the pedal overlap. Normally, you should at most get some toe overlap. Loosen the bolt in the top of ...


37

Stop. Back up if necessary. Don't risk running over it. Snakes almost never chase people, they will only attack if they're cornered or you're lying very still (for very large snakes that eat things the size of people). Running over a snake is probably your worst approach if you don't want to get bitten. Not only do you have to be very close to the snake, ...


33

A resonant frequency encountered on a road surface would be for the whole bike system, i.e. frame, wheels, rider etc. The rider is effectively attached to the frame via elements with spring, damping and active control properties (arms and legs). Bumps encountered at a specific frequency might buck the rider off. Bicycle frames are pretty stiff so any ...


33

It may well become uncomfortable after pedalling for some time, so don't rely on a quick test ride to check. More importantly though, you need to be able to stop the bike based on the need to stop, and put your foot down without examining the ground for broken glass, thorns etc. It's not completely unknown to strike the sole of your shoe on the ground, like ...


32

You have commented I mainly use the back brake. I therefore propose option 4: improve your braking technique before spending any money. If you only use half of your bicycle's brakes, you can't expect to stop quickly. Further, you're using much less than half your available braking force, because the back brake is much less effective than the front one. ...


32

I also live in Ottawa so I can provide some pertinent viewpoints. Yes, you should report it, and yes, it will probably be an exercise in frustration. Don't expect the police to do anything about it. However, you should report it anyway, it might end up in a database somewhere and give them another data point about why it's important to build more cycle ...


32

The simplest answers are ask for their ID, or for their car keys if they arrive by car. There are plenty of other options on various forums like https://www.bikeforums.net/general-cycling-discussion/446194-selling-bike-craigslist-test-rides.html https://www.bikeforums.net/general-cycling-discussion/687171-how-do-you-let-potential-buyer-test-ride-your-bike....


31

Wood et al. (2009): Drivers’ and cyclists’ experiences of sharing the road: incidents, attitudes and perceptions of visibility. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 41 (4), pp. 772-776 About differences in the visibility as perceived by bikers and drivers: The largest difference relates to the visibility of cyclists using lights on their bicycles, where ...


30

The short answer is that, in practical terms, the difference isn't great. The longer answer requires some explanation of "visual conspicuity." In optical engineering, conspicuity is the study of what makes things "conspicuous," and some researchers split the tasks into "detection" and "identification" (see, for example, the works of A. Toet et al, such as ...


30

The Bicycle Safety Institute disagrees with the 2-3 year rule. They have a good page on replacing helmets. I usually replace one when the foam rubber gets old and crumbly, when the adjustments quit working, or when I damage it. UV can deteriorate the plastic if you leave it outside a lot. And, if you ever "use" a helmet, i.e., crash and save your skull with ...


30

Well, regarding the question asked: "why is it safer etc." let's go: (already mentioned) The closing speed between a car coming from behind is much slower. He has more time to see you before overtaking, and if you need to cross, you can signal your turn, so he can slow down for you to pass; By the same reasons, you can flow with traffic, take the lane, ...


30

To be honest, I think you handled the situation pretty well as it was. You've got to get yourself to the bottom of the mountain safely and even in locales which have laws about deliberately impeding following road users you will have to allow people to pass in a manner safe for you, this isn't necessarily going to be immediately. Seems to me that this ...


30

Please accept my apologies on behalf of cyclists. Hollerin' something at a motorist who was trying to figure out how to handle an obviously unclear situation was inappropriate. Thanks for doing your best and not killing any cyclists that day! In general, I agree with the other answers here that you handled this fine and there isn't some magic you could have ...


30

There's a fake Buddha quote on some internet sites which says, "Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die." The most popular of the genuine Buddha quotes (the Dhammapada) begins with, "He abused me, he struck me, he overpowered me, he robbed me." Those who harbor such thoughts do not still their hatred. "He abused me, ...


29

As (almost) always, the great Sheldon Brown has covered this particular topic. Standing while Cycling To Sit or to Stand? It is my belief that a great many cyclists stand up to pedal much more often than they should. I've often said: "If you find yourself standing to accelerate, on level ground, it is a sign that your gear is too high or that ...


29

According to Safety effects of permanent running lights for bicycles: A controlled experiment. (Madsen JC1, Andersen T, Lahrmann HS.) they give about a 19% reduction in crash rates. There's a copy of the paper in Scribd as pdf. Every reference I've been able to find appears to refer to this one study. The incidence rate, including all recorded bicycle ...


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