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Cycling in Waterloo Region
(08-04-2017, 12:44 PM)MidTowner Wrote: Edit: I say this because plenty of people erroneously think cyclists are required to wear helmets. That is reinforced when police are quoted in articles suggesting it in the same way as they suggest that people pay attention while driving.

"Remember, always keep your eyes on the road (1), don't text and drive (2), and wear a helmet when cycling (3)."

1: The law, defying could harm yourself and/or others
2: The law, defying could harm yourself and/or others
3: Not the law, defying may increase harm to yourself if in an accident.

But the way they say them gives them equal weight.
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In particular, this article puts that suggestion in the first paragraph where it's considered among the most important details being conveyed. This can give it undue weight if, in fact, it does not apply (which I am not certain it does).
My Twitter: @KevinLMaps
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(08-04-2017, 01:07 PM)jamincan Wrote: I think his posts can sometimes be depressing and negative because there is such a monumental shift in culture needed. Facing all the shortcomings in how we build our cities can be discouraging. In any case, he's not just a cynic sitting behind a keyboard, he's actively engaged with the community trying to change it for the better. He's taken positive action that few can claim; give him a break if his posts aren't all sunny days.

My view on helmets is maybe a little different than others. The sort of riding I do involves a certain risk of crashing without even factoring in vehicles, which maybe influences my perspective. I'm aware of the data that helmets don't necessarily reduce fatalities, but I'm also acutely aware of how debilitating concussions and other head injuries can be, and helmets can help avoid that when accidents do happen. My reading of the article about the incident in Ayr didn't make it clear to me that the fault lay with the driver. It may well have been entirely the cyclist's responsibility, or not. Regardless, in this case there was a crash potentially involving a head injury; a helmet may help reduce the severity of the injuries.

I appreciate the response.  Certainly some types of riding demand a helmet independent of road safety.  And I would always agree with "before hitting the trails, put on helmet" or whatever your favourite flavor of cycling, is always good advice.  And I'm in no way advocating *against* helmets.  I have a helmet from my collision that proves they were helpful.  And it is perhaps unfair of me to point out the Netherlands as an example where it would be bad advice to wear a helmet

But I really do believe the opportunity cost, plus the message to drivers makes the police statement in fact, one that is contrary to safety.  I see it as similar to the "share the road" signs.  Studies were done, they increase antagonism on the road because cyclists and drivers interpret them differently.  To cyclists, they mean drivers must share, to drivers they mean, cyclists should get out of the way.

(08-04-2017, 12:50 PM)creative Wrote: danbrotherson. It doesn't say that at all! 
I am so tired of your continued angry posts that ruin this forum for everyone. I've been on this forum since the beginning and Wonderful Waterloo before that. I don't believe that you have ever posted a positive comment. I'll probably get banned from this group but I'm sure that there will also be a lot of people quietly agreeing with me. Now to figure out how to block your posts so that I can continue to enjoy the bulk of this forum with out having to deal with your annoying rants and rages.

I do believe it says that some drivers, the comment threads facebook make this clear enough to me, but you're welcome to disagree, or argue otherwise.

I am sorry that you interpret my comments as "angry rants" they are not intended that way, and I'm sorry that my comments have harmed your enjoyment of this forum.  If you wish to block me, you can do so easily by clicking my handle and going to "Add to Ignore List".  I do think it is unfair to say I've never posted anything positive, as this is clearly not true.  Ironic as well, given that just last week I was angrily accused of being far too positive with respect to our citys' cycling policies.  I also hope you do not speak for the "majority" or "everyone" here.
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(08-04-2017, 12:23 PM)danbrotherston Wrote:
(08-04-2017, 12:16 PM)jamincan Wrote: Wearing a helmet is always good advice.

No, it certainly isn't "always" good advice (in the Netherlands, its statistically bad advice, but really, it's wasteful advice).

You are assuming a causal relationship where one doesn't exist.  Correlation does not automatically imply causality.
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(08-05-2017, 09:02 AM)tomh009 Wrote:
(08-04-2017, 12:23 PM)danbrotherston Wrote: No, it certainly isn't "always" good advice (in the Netherlands, its statistically bad advice, but really, it's wasteful advice).

You are assuming a causal relationship where one doesn't exist.  Correlation does not automatically imply causality.

No, of course correlation does not imply causation, and you are right, I was referring to the fact that wearing a helmet is correlated with being injured in a cycling accident in the Netherlands.  That doesn't mean wearing a helmet causes injuries, but in fact means that only people who are sport biking wear helmets, and they are more likely to be injured.

But I still don't know that wearing a helmet in the Netherlands is a good idea.  At the very least, people will look funny at you, and you'll muss up your hair, and maybe you'll be less likely to bike.  Certainly it is not "good" advice, as I said, it's at best, wasteful advice.
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Mike Boos and I were talking about the changes to Northfield on the LRT Facebook group yesterday. This morning I biked both directions across, and here's a little video showing the final configuration, now that everything is complete.





I guess I proved to myself it's just a case of getting more confident, but it still makes me shudder a bit going Westbound, being sandwiched between the merge lane and the two lanes on my left there. Certainly not the most comfortable area ever.

...and I guess I have to ask: Why isn't there the super-bright green treatment to the entire Westbound crossover area? Seems like this would be the prime area of conflict to highlight.
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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In the long merging sections, the cyclist is going to be able to respond to an inattentive motorist much easier - just adjusting their speed a bit. Where the crossover is at a steep angle with no merge section, the risk is higher that someone trying to find a small gap in traffic and quickly merge in will fail to notice the cyclist and the cyclist wouldn't have time to respond.

This reminds me of another section of interchange with rather awkward bike infrastructure. I've only ever gone through when it's not busy, but northbound on Ira Needles/Trussler, the merging lane from the highway continues on as a second lane. This means that the bike lane just suddenly ends and reappears to the right of the merge lane. Volumes are low enough when I've gone through that it's never been a problem, but I really don't know how it could be safely redesigned. Perhaps putting a green lane marking across the merge lake kind of like on Northfield here and then a sign telling motorists to yield to cyclists?
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I guess I'm of the mindset that, as a much slower-moving body on a bike, motorists should be adjusting their speed and merge point, not me speeding up or slowing down for them. I'm not just saying that to sound like a dick, if I was driving here, I'd either speed up or slow down a little to either go in front of (of safe!) or behind the biker. Of course while watching for a gap in traffic. But, you ride a lot faster than I do. Smile

Actually, that all sounds like a lot to try and do. I can't think of a reason I'd ever use that particular ramp, though, so I guess I can sleep easier. Smile
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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As the merging vehicle, the motorist should be the one adjusting speed, but we all know that the way things should be isn't the way things are and the consequences for the motorist failing to do so are much greater for me than it is for the motorist. If they're merging and it seems they are unaware of my presence, a quick light tap on my brakes should be enough for me to avoid trouble. The section with the green paint doesn't offer the cyclist any opportunity to avoid inattentive motorists, though, so making sure they are aware of cyclists is much more critical.

I guess the question should be at what point should they put the extra green paint. Considering the potential problems it has as a slippery surface in the rain, we don't want it to be ubiquitous. That would also lead to it's effect of drawing attention to the cycling lane being diminished. Situations where bike lanes cross merge lanes are sufficiently uncommon, though, that it would surely not be an issue to apply the paint in every case.
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Oh, shoot - sorry, I absolutely agree in the case of heading Eastbound (green paint), as a cyclist I should be responsible for making the decision to slow down if I see someone coming up the ramp that doesn't see me. I was meaning more for that loooooooong Westbound merge/crossover area... as a cyclist I'm more-or-less a stationary object for the short period of time a fast-moving car moves through the area, so I think it's up to them to move around me on my bike in that case.
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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(08-04-2017, 12:44 PM)MidTowner Wrote: Why are police giving advice, anyway? Bicycling without a helmet is not an offence; operating a vehicle without sufficient care is.

Edit: I say this because plenty of people erroneously think cyclists are required to wear helmets. That is reinforced when police are quoted in articles suggesting it in the same way as they suggest that people pay attention while driving.

I'd say they are giving advice, to protect life.  It's part of their job.

Is locking your doors and windows, walking in groups or hiding your valuables a law?  No, but it is common advice to prevent crime.  When the police are at the mall handing out "Lock it or lose it" cards when they are checking for unlocked vehicles and valuable items, no one thinks its anything other than giving good advice.  I'd say the bike helmet comments are the same.

I'm pretty sure the police encouraged people to wear seat belts before they were mandatory....

Coke
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(08-14-2017, 09:02 AM)Coke6pk Wrote:
(08-04-2017, 12:44 PM)MidTowner Wrote: Why are police giving advice, anyway? Bicycling without a helmet is not an offence; operating a vehicle without sufficient care is.

Edit: I say this because plenty of people erroneously think cyclists are required to wear helmets. That is reinforced when police are quoted in articles suggesting it in the same way as they suggest that people pay attention while driving.

I'd say they are giving advice, to protect life.  It's part of their job.

Is locking your doors and windows, walking in groups or hiding your valuables a law?  No, but it is common advice to prevent crime.  When the police are at the mall handing out "Lock it or lose it" cards when they are checking for unlocked vehicles and valuable items, no one thinks its anything other than giving good advice.  I'd say the bike helmet comments are the same.

I'm pretty sure the police encouraged people to wear seat belts before they were mandatory....

Coke

It is important to look at the context of the advice.

I don't think the police should respond to break and enter with "you should probably lock your doors" either.  

That being said, I would still argue that victim blaming is a much more serious problem when it comes to cycling and helmets than it is with locking your doors.  While I'm sure plenty of people would say "well you should have locked your doors", none of those people would argue against police presence or other safety measures in addition to locking one's door, as they do without fail when there's a cyclist involved collision.
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I wonder if the comments on the police/helmet thing would have been any different if people knew that the kid who got hit was not wearing a helmet and suffered a head injury?
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(08-14-2017, 09:09 AM)danbrotherston Wrote: It is important to look at the context of the advice.

I don't think the police should respond to break and enter with "you should probably lock your doors" either.  

That being said, I would still argue that victim blaming is a much more serious problem when it comes to cycling and helmets than it is with locking your doors.  While I'm sure plenty of people would say "well you should have locked your doors", none of those people would argue against police presence or other safety measures in addition to locking one's door, as they do without fail when there's a cyclist involved collision.

Agreed. I would agree that victim shaming is bad, but if for the greater good, I get it: (ie. The driver was travelling at 140 km/h when he hit the tree. Speed was a factor in the collision. --- Read: Speeding kills).

Normally, the helmet/door lock/etc. advice is given as a generality for others to learn from, and hopefully to prevent a future incident.

While the (lack of) helmet was not the cause of the accident, it could of mitigated damages. No different than I get rear ended, but was seriously injured as I didn't have my seat belt on and was ejected from the vehicle. The police reminding people to wear their seat belts afterwards is prudent advice.

Coke
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@Coke6pk Well, we can agree to disagree.

@panamaniac No it would not change my statements.
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