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Old 04.07.2011, 12:04
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Re: Making roads safer

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It's not like they don't exist here...
Hi, ok!

1) then if they exist they should be widespread. Why putting that only in some intersections? It's like creating a "special place" which can confuse drivers; as opposed to having a "standard everywhere" which could be seen often and learnt.

2) In your picture it's less visible than in the UK one- Maybe the "color" is adding some important subconscious information to the car drivers: it's red, clearly visible: it's clearly important place for bicycles users.

3) Even if it exists, that was not the point about what I said about "changes in Switzerland"- changes can be, as it was said, about convincing some politics to admit the current situation is not appropriate/ or not safe. That's what I think will be hard. Whatever the "reason why" (money, acceptance they don't do everything good, changes, budget, self interests, lack of interest, denial, etc...).
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  #42  
Old 04.07.2011, 12:12
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Re: Making roads safer

I gave MiniMusicPrincessMudChick® a lecture on parking lot safety a while back. She had a habit of skipping along ahead of us, so I took her to a little hatchback and showed her that the driver couldn't see her though the back window. She pointed out that the car was parked, so, so? A little more explaining got it though her that parked cars leave, and often quickly and quietly. And that brought us to one of our first real discussions on death and what that means.

It's shocking and sad how many reports one sees of children being run over by cars backing up, often in their own driveways by family members. With the density of cars and parking here make sure your little ones don't get too comfortable in parking lots.
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  #43  
Old 04.07.2011, 12:17
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Re: Making roads safer

As slammer has just posted, a white painted bike, or "ghost bike", put by the scene of the accident serves as a great reminder that (a) someone died and (b) please take care.

In London not far from where I live, two or three female cyclists were killed by left turning lorries (we drive on the other side don't forget) within a year. Lots of comments regarding why they were all female (mainly that men are more aggressive and are more likely to jump the lights or stop well in front of the white line) but one of the outcomes is that the local govt got someone to park a big lorry in an open space and invite cyclists along to sit in the cab and work out where all the many blind spots are.

We don't know (yet?) what happened in this instance but never cycle inside of a lorry or other large vehicle at junctions. If you want to get in front and it's a long line of traffic, go around (watch out, in the UK at least, for overtaking motorcycles and of course other cyclists). At junctions I always stop well in front, or behind, of even a small car. I don't stay parallel to them. Of course, if you get to the junction first and then a lorry pulls alongside you, there's not much you can do. In that situation I'll go forward regardless of whether that means jumping over the white line. Or just refuse to move once the lghts change and let the lorry do its stuff.
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  #44  
Old 04.07.2011, 12:17
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Re: Making roads safer

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I got this from a keen cyclist friend of mine on the Lancashire evening telegraph forum, I think it would be fitting.

Quote: Have you heard of 'ghost bikes'? Bikes are sometimes painted white and chained to something near where a cyclists has been killed on the road. Some might see this as morbid, but I think that as well as a beautiful memorial, they're a poignant reminder to all of how vulnerable cyclists are.Unquote

Give it some thoughts please.
I like the idea. But I can only imagine what the red tape machine would make of it. "Sir, we don't give permits for chaining white bikes up permanently" OK, no permit, no problem- spraypaintchaindone.
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Old 04.07.2011, 12:23
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Re: Making roads safer

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I like the idea. But I can only imagine what the red tape machine would make of it. "Sir, we don't give permits for chaining white bikes up permanently" OK, no permit, no problem- spraypaintchaindone.
I say we just bloody do it and sod the red tape, laminate a picture of Begga and stick it to the bike.
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  #46  
Old 04.07.2011, 12:29
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Making bikes safer

I fully understand and support all the good intensions to make the junction/cross in question much more safe for everyone and the bicyclists in particular, so if anyone creates a (online) petition in order to help put some pressure on the local decision maker to make things happen, I will gladly participate.

However, solving the dangerous “truck going right – bike going straight ahead” problem by separating the bikes from the cars/trucks, the individual awareness every one of us must exercise in the traffic will be lowered. I bet you have seen people walk up to a pedestrian crossing and then just turn sharp left/right and walking out without even looking, because they feel certain that the cars will stop rather than hit them.

I commute every day by bicycle – year in and year out – 20 km each way. I am familiar with the law and I pay very much attention to the traffic and to my best ability I try to “read” the traffic and avoid any danger. My riding style is as defensive as it gets and I take no chances – apart from being on the road mixing with the cars and trucks twice a day.

When I started to commute by bike I felt that the cars did not see me that well even though my bike lights were legal and well maintained with fresh batteries when needed. At first I used a normal LED front light but after two incidents where oncoming cars over took another car and thus ended on a head on collision course with me, I saw the need for having something more powerful.

I spent a couple of month trying different lights before finally decided on the lights you see in the pictures. The front light is a 900 lumen LED and it can for sure make the oncoming traffic see you in due time. It is rechargeable so the running costs are low. I found my on Ricardo for 140 CHF but it is worth every rappen.

My rear light is also a LED but I have “built” it myself. I bought the light and battery as samples directly from a Chinese bike light manufacturer as I could not find it around here and mounted it on/in my saddle bag which I have on my bike everyday anyway.



I can clearly tell that the cars/trucks see my rear light, as they pass me at safe distance and I use it on my commuter bike all day, also in broad daylight.

Apart from the light I use a high visible Gilet and a matching cover for my backpack on the darker days.
Attached Thumbnails
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  #47  
Old 04.07.2011, 12:44
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Re: Making roads safer

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We don't know (yet?) what happened in this instance but never cycle inside of a lorry or other large vehicle at junctions.
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  #48  
Old 04.07.2011, 16:26
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Re: Making roads safer

At Begga's crossing, the lane extends a few yards beyond the stop line for motorised traffic (link to Google Streetview, above). Cars will clearly see the cyclists in front of them, but the cement mixer driver sitting high up in his cab will not have been able to see down in front of his truck.

I understand Begga worked at the Felix Platter Spital (source: Basler Zeitung), and would have wanted to go straight. If she was just a bit slow starting off, it is easy to speculate what happened.

At most intersections, the cycle lane ends before an intersection. The rule is that traffic turning right must move across to block off cyclists, forcing them to wait behind.

However, not many cyclists I know are aware of this rule, and they try squeeze past as far as possible.

So apparently this extended cycle lane at this dangerous crossing was introduced at the insistence of the Velo Verein. (source: one of the comments on the Basler Zeitung)

One can only say it was well-intended, but not fully thought through.
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Old 04.07.2011, 16:35
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Re: Making roads safer

I am sure it is well intentioned, but please, let the police and their investigators handle the investigation. They are the professionals and will be able to understand much better than we will. If you must, ask for the report when all's done and see if then pressure can be applied to change the junction. Going off half-cocked will achieve nothing.

Believe me when I say that I speak from absolute personal experience on this one; it is *insert adjective of choice* unfortunate, but not all accidents in life can be avoided.
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Old 04.07.2011, 17:04
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Re: Making roads safer

just heard the screech of brakes, outside my office (Dufourstrasse). Mopedder currently being stetchered away. Car driver sitting on the wall in tears.

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Old 04.07.2011, 17:32
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Re: Making roads safer

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We don't know (yet?) what happened in this instance but never cycle inside of a lorry or other large vehicle at junctions. If you want to get in front and it's a long line of traffic, go around (watch out, in the UK at least, for overtaking motorcycles and of course other cyclists). At junctions I always stop well in front, or behind, of even a small car. I don't stay parallel to them. Of course, if you get to the junction first and then a lorry pulls alongside you, there's not much you can do. In that situation I'll go forward regardless of whether that means jumping over the white line. Or just refuse to move once the lghts change and let the lorry do its stuff.
I have only just really started cycling (although with the hubby who is very experienced) and try to stay off of roads but unfortunately I can't avoid them completely as I need to go on the roads to get to the dedicated paths. I will definitely take all the advice to heart - in fact I have just put cards with our personal contact details in our tool packs we keep on the bikes.

Hopefully this tragedy can lead to big changes but we can all make small changes ourselves and honour Begga's memory one person at a time.
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  #52  
Old 05.07.2011, 09:51
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Re: Making roads safer

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never cycle inside of a lorry or other large vehicle at junctions.
At this intersection, the cycle lane is painted in such a way that you have to do just that.
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  #53  
Old 05.07.2011, 10:08
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Re: Making roads safer

On my car I have these electronic sensors for parking. My car has them in the front, back and even on the sides. Why don't big trucks have sensors like this all the way around to detect for cyclists and things like that ? Cannot be too expensive compared to the price of the truck...

Maybe when sensors like this are made mandatory accidents like Begga's can be avoided...
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  #54  
Old 05.07.2011, 10:15
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Re: Making roads safer

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At this intersection, the cycle lane is painted in such a way that you have to do just that.
Without wishing to sound pedantic, but AdrianLondon is correct. The cycle lane does end a few meters ahead of the white lines for cars, which does indeed tempt cyclists to try to get to the end and ahead of the traffic, but there is nothing to say you have to creep up the inside to get to the end of the lane, especially if there is a lorry there.
If you can not get into the line of sight of the vehicle ahead safely, then best to stay back and lose a few seconds on your trip.
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Old 05.07.2011, 10:24
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Re: Making roads safer

i was at this junction yesterday and saw a guy knocked off his bike in exactly the same circumstance by a car turning right.

it was only today i found out about the tragic accident.
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Old 05.07.2011, 10:30
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Re: Making roads safer

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In London not far from where I live, two or three female cyclists were killed by left turning lorries (we drive on the other side don't forget) within a year. Lots of comments regarding why they
London also apparently had plenty of bicycle accidents involving bendy buses which is why Boris Johnson vowed to get rid of them.

Here they were using such buses generations before anybody in London had heard of the concept and I have yet to hear of them as being a notable cause of accidents.

So either it's the media influencing our perception, or there is something fundamentally different between the two countries in how traffic works. Maybe London bus drivers should be put through a Swiss bus driver training programme? And Swiss lorry drivers also.
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Old 05.07.2011, 10:31
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Re: Making roads safer

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In London not far from where I live, two or three female cyclists were killed by left turning lorries (we drive on the other side don't forget) within a year. Lots of comments regarding why they were all female (mainly that men are more aggressive and are more likely to jump the lights or stop well in front of the white line) but one of the outcomes is that the local govt got someone to park a big lorry in an open space and invite cyclists along to sit in the cab and work out where all the many blind spots are.
Something very similar happened only a few weeks ago outside Euston station. Very sad.
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Old 05.07.2011, 10:51
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Re: Making roads safer

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i was at this junction yesterday and saw a guy knocked off his bike in exactly the same circumstance by a car turning right.
This would point to the junction being a bad design, or at least worthy of investigation. The google image on the opening post here appears to show white lines guiding traffic to the right. A car driver could mistakenly assume that it is a right-filtering lane and just turn right without looking or indicating. The Swissies often do the latter anyway, but in my experience they do look.

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London also apparently had plenty of bicycle accidents involving bendy buses which is why Boris Johnson vowed to get rid of them.

Here they were using such buses generations before anybody in London had heard of the concept and I have yet to hear of them as being a notable cause of accidents.
Firstly, it's my impression that bus drivers in London, like the car drivers themselves, are more aggressive as they have to deal with a greater volume of traffic plus much longer distances. And drivers of non-bendy busses probably got little training before being given keys to a bendy one. Secondly, do the Swiss (at any level, canton or otherwise) collect cycling accident and fatality statistics?
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Old 05.07.2011, 10:53
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Re: Making roads safer

Ok summerrain so I checked out that light this morning and it is how I thought. The cycle light goes green and then 2-3 seconds later the traffic light for the cars goes amber then green so in all the cyclest should have around 5-6 seconds head start of the cars. Also the cycle lane in this case is ahead of the cars as is the case at Beggas junction.

It is every persons right to send a petition to get something changed in Switzerland, you do not have to be a voter.
more information also the office of Federal Department of Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications (DETEC) and specifically the Federal Roads Office is probably the best place to send the petition too. They are required by law to read all petitions however they are not required to give a response.

Here is the name and address for the person in charge:

Dr. Peter Füglistaler, director of the Federal Office of Transport
Federal Roads Office
Address
3003 Berne

Phone: 031 322 94 11
Fax: 031 323 23 03
E-mail: info@astra.admin.ch
Internet: http://www.astra.admin.ch

I hope this helps
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Old 05.07.2011, 11:04
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Re: Making roads safer

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On my car I have these electronic sensors for parking. My car has them in the front, back and even on the sides. Why don't big trucks have sensors like this all the way around to detect for cyclists and things like that ? Cannot be too expensive compared to the price of the truck...

Maybe when sensors like this are made mandatory accidents like Begga's can be avoided...
that wouldn't work, the poles of the traffic lights, bins, general road furniture etc etc would set them off and so the drivers would just ignore them, in the uk lorries have to have mirrors over there side windows pointing down so they can see anyone next to them, but if the driver thought the cyclist was turning the same direction as him anyway then that wouldn't have saved her either.

it does sound like that junction is particularly badly designed, but until the facts are known then its pointless the speculate.

eta I like the idea of ghost bikes, anything to make people think
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