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Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road
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I have read the threads on cycling safety and how dangerous it is out on the roads. I wanted to share what I saw this morning on my way to work. I realize cycling is dangerous and seems to be getting worse with distracted driving. However, there are definitely things you can do to minimize the chances of being hit. Today I was driving to work on a very busy road with a speed limit of 45 mph. Traffic was heavy. I could see a few cars swerving slightly to the left ahead of me, as if to avoid something, but I did not know what it was. I assumed it was a cyclist but could not see anyone. Finally when I got closer I spotted a cyclist. This was not a casual commuter, but a roadie who was going very fast and did not look like he was commuting to work. He was dressed in all black with a gray helmet, and no blinking light. His bike was black also. He was not visible until I was very close to him. By not wearing anything brightly colored, he was an accident waiting to happen.

I always wear bright colored clothing. I have a yellow jacket, yellow helmet, yellow shoes, a light, etc. I don't wear all yellow every time I ride, but I make sure that I have something on with high visibility. When cars approach me from behind, I can tell that they see me from far away because they usually give me a lot of room and slow down. The cyclist I passed today had nothing with high visibility. Combine that with the busy road and rush hour, and he greatly increased the chances of getting hit. I also saw him go right through a red light because there was a green left turn arrow, and no cars were coming in the opposite direction turning left.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [runner66] [ In reply to ]
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runner66 wrote:
I have read the threads on cycling safety and how dangerous it is out on the roads. I wanted to share what I saw this morning on my way to work. I realize cycling is dangerous and seems to be getting worse with distracted driving. However, there are definitely things you can do to minimize the chances of being hit. Today I was driving to work on a very busy road with a speed limit of 45 mph. Traffic was heavy. I could see a few cars swerving slightly to the left ahead of me, as if to avoid something, but I did not know what it was. I assumed it was a cyclist but could not see anyone. Finally when I got closer I spotted a cyclist. This was not a casual commuter, but a roadie who was going very fast and did not look like he was commuting to work. He was dressed in all black with a gray helmet, and no blinking light. His bike was black also. He was not visible until I was very close to him. By not wearing anything brightly colored, he was an accident waiting to happen.

I always wear bright colored clothing. I have a yellow jacket, yellow helmet, yellow shoes, a light, etc. I don't wear all yellow every time I ride, but I make sure that I have something on with high visibility. When cars approach me from behind, I can tell that they see me from far away because they usually give me a lot of room and slow down. The cyclist I passed today had nothing with high visibility. Combine that with the busy road and rush hour, and he greatly increased the chances of getting hit. I also saw him go right through a red light because there was a green left turn arrow, and no cars were coming in the opposite direction turning left.

I've found it doesn't matter at all what color I wear or that I have a blinking light. Some people give room, some do not, some yell things, some throw things, most are on their cell phones... I'm not saying what you saw wasn't bad decisions on any part, but it's interesting that this is never put in the reverse direction:

"A car was rear-ended today however the vehicle following the car was not at fault because the car they hit was dark in color."

Blog | DeSoto Sport Ambassador | Strava
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [runner66] [ In reply to ]
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I saw a guy in the Wawa parking lot this morning getting out of a work truck wearing a 'safety' vest so filthy it was merely "green" not "hi-viz safety neon lime"

Blessed are the Nobodies, for Theirs is the Kingdom of Fascinating Stories
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [runner66] [ In reply to ]
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I saw a cyclist riding in the dark with no lights last night. Not a commuter but a roadie clearly riding for fitness. No lights on front or back. Not smart
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [mickison] [ In reply to ]
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"I saw a Black Flag sticker on a Cadillac"

Bonus points to anyone who knows that song/artist

Blessed are the Nobodies, for Theirs is the Kingdom of Fascinating Stories
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [trihawg] [ In reply to ]
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I could not disagree more strongly and I can't understand how you reached that conclusion. It is absolutely easier to notice a rider with a bright blinking light and hi-viz/contrasting clothing. Even on a bright day a rider in dark clothes in a shaded area becomes nearly invisible from a distance. And riding at dawn/dusk without lights is suicidal.

It certainly is a drivers responsibility to pay attention but dead cyclists don't get to bitch about it.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [RandMart] [ In reply to ]
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RandMart wrote:
"I saw a Black Flag sticker on a Cadillac"

Bonus points to anyone who knows that song/artist

The Ataris. Sneaky move not posting the original lyric.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [RandMart] [ In reply to ]
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Boys of Summer. what do I win?
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [Justicebeaver] [ In reply to ]
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I'm not commenting at all on whether it is easier to see someone or not. It clearly is easier to see someone wearing hi-vis and bright colors. What I'm commenting on it that it seems (to me) that no matter what I wear, drivers behave the same.

Blog | DeSoto Sport Ambassador | Strava
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [runner66] [ In reply to ]
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Riding West in the afternoons is equally, if not more dangerous than this. Being safe out there means not only knowing WHERE to ride, but also WHEN to ride.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [trihawg] [ In reply to ]
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It's not the drivers who see you that you need to worry about, it's the driver's who don't. Even someone texting and not paying attention is far more likely to catch a glimpse of a high visibility cyclist and avoid hitting them, compared to someone wearing all black.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [dalava] [ In reply to ]
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WelshinPhilly wrote:
RandMart wrote:
"I saw a Black Flag sticker on a Cadillac"

Bonus points to anyone who knows that song/artist


The Ataris. Sneaky move not posting the original lyric.

Yep, I like The Ataris version better

dalava wrote:
Boys of Summer. what do I win?

Like I said, you both get Bonus Points, that's all

Blessed are the Nobodies, for Theirs is the Kingdom of Fascinating Stories
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [runner66] [ In reply to ]
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runner66 wrote:
... This was not a casual commuter, but a roadie who was going very fast and did not look like he was commuting to work. He was dressed in all black with a gray helmet, and no blinking light. His bike was black also. He was not visible until I was very close to him. By not wearing anything brightly colored, he was an accident waiting to happen.
...

I dress as a roadie pretty much everyday for my commute to work; I leave my computer at work and stuff the rest including lunch in my back pocket.

The color of bike probably doesn't have anything to do with visibility... I don't remember the color of a bike to be something I notice quickly when I am driving or riding.

IMHO, the dumb thing this cyclist (see, that word again) did was riding on a busy road where commuters use during commuting hours.

Of topic rant: Waze is effing with my cycling by diverting all the traffic to the smaller roads I normally ride because there are fewer cars. I hate and boycott that app when I drive.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [trihawg] [ In reply to ]
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Regardless, at the very least, being more visible gives drivers who would give you room a better opportunity and time to do so.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [WelshinPhilly] [ In reply to ]
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The Atari's covered Don Henley's song, but were too punk to leave the Deadhead reference in it.

I'm closer to the feathered end of the spear than the point.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [WelshinPhilly] [ In reply to ]
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WelshinPhilly wrote:
RandMart wrote:
"I saw a Black Flag sticker on a Cadillac"

Bonus points to anyone who knows that song/artist


The Ataris. Sneaky move not posting the original lyric.

Ok, here's an even more obscure version, with double bonus points.

"I saw a Moosehead sticker on a Cadillac"
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [Thom] [ In reply to ]
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Thom wrote:
Ok, here's an even more obscure version, with double bonus points.

"I saw a Moosehead sticker on a Cadillac"

Had to google that




Thanks for the earworm, fucker

Blessed are the Nobodies, for Theirs is the Kingdom of Fascinating Stories
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [nickwhite] [ In reply to ]
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nickwhite wrote:
Riding West in the afternoons is equally, if not more dangerous than this. Being safe out there means not only knowing WHERE to ride, but also WHEN to ride.

I could not agree more. There are times a year where I can't ride one of my favorite routes because the angle of the sun makes it so the sun is almost always in drivers eyes.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [RandMart] [ In reply to ]
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RandMart wrote:
"I saw a Black Flag sticker on a Cadillac"

Bonus points to anyone who knows that song/artist

"A little voice inside of me said, don't look back, you can never look back."

Somewhere, I have 2nd generation soundboard copies of the early April '70 Fillmore East shows. They're probably way too brittle to play.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [RandMart] [ In reply to ]
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RandMart wrote:
Thom wrote:
Ok, here's an even more obscure version, with double bonus points.

"I saw a Moosehead sticker on a Cadillac"


Had to google that




Thanks for the earworm, fucker

I would think anyone that grew up in the Detroit media market about that time would be familiar with it. It was huge locally.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [mickison] [ In reply to ]
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Can't really fix stupid.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [RandMart] [ In reply to ]
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RandMart wrote:
"I saw a Black Flag sticker on a Cadillac"

Bonus points to anyone who knows that song/artist


I currently prefer the more mournful version done a decade ago by The Hooters - https://vimeo.com/4534549

Yes, I see cyclists doing stuff I think is stupid. Other than no lights while riding in low visibility conditions, the main one probably is riding on a high traffic, 45+ speed limit road with narrow shoulders when there is a parallel side street or multiuse path nearby. Sometimes I want to pull over and let them know there is a safer option nearby.
Last edited by: Mark Lemmon: Apr 4, 19 8:48
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [runner66] [ In reply to ]
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I saw a guy driving a completely black car this morning. Hell, I've seen cars painted in camo patterns.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [Mark Lemmon] [ In reply to ]
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Real cyclists don’t ride a multi use path. On the other hand, is the OP the fashion police? Obviously, hi vis is great, but not the end all be all. I have a black bike, black helmet, black jacket,
black vest, black bibs, black arm warmers, knee warmers and shoe covers. I wear fluo colored jerseys and fluo yellow shoes. I use a tailight in broad daylight. At dusk or night lights front and back.

I see nothing wrong with this approach. The dark clothing is always considerably cheaper, and not everyone is riding around looking like a human highlighter or glow stick from head to toe.

Mark Lemmon wrote:
RandMart wrote:
"I saw a Black Flag sticker on a Cadillac"

Bonus points to anyone who knows that song/artist


I currently prefer the more mournful version done a decade ago by The Hooters - https://vimeo.com/4534549

Yes, I see cyclists doing stuff I think is stupid. Other than no lights while riding in low visibility conditions, the main one probably is riding on a high traffic, 45+ speed limit road with narrow shoulders when there is a parallel side street or multiuse path nearby. Sometimes I want to pull over and let them know there is a safer option nearby.
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Re: Cyclist wearing dark clothing on busy road [Thom] [ In reply to ]
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Thom wrote:
I saw a guy driving a completely black car this morning. Hell, I've seen cars painted in camo patterns.

Kind of defeats the object, doesn't it?


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