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Blinking Lights During the Day on Roads and Streets

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Blinking Lights During the Day on Roads and Streets

Old 07-14-20, 04:42 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by bobwysiwyg View Post
Well, they are worth their weight in lumens when they alert a driver exiting a commercial driveway or parking lot of your presence.

I am completely skeptical that the flashing light has any impact at all in that situation. The problem with those are obstructed view and you can't magically see the strobe around corners.
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Old 07-14-20, 04:53 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by holytrousers View Post
It's not about being seen but rather about being noticed. We see many things but don't necessarily pay attention to them..

So what's the logic of drawing the attention of someone driving the opposite direction across the street from me?

Also, that's the kind of non-disprovable assertion people make when they have a weak argument.

My logic on this is very simple-a flashing red light during the day may or may not have a beneficial effect, but it won't do any harm. A white strobe bright enough to be seen in daylight is also going to be bright enough to be disorienting at close rsnge. As a bicyclist, I only care about the cars near me, so I don't strobe, ever. A solid white light in daytime or a slow blink probably can't do harm, so knock yourself out.
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Old 07-14-20, 05:41 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
So what's the logic of drawing the attention of someone driving the opposite direction across the street from me?

Also, that's the kind of non-disprovable assertion people make when they have a weak argument.

My logic on this is very simple-a flashing red light during the day may or may not have a beneficial effect, but it won't do any harm. A white strobe bright enough to be seen in daylight is also going to be bright enough to be disorienting at close rsnge. As a bicyclist, I only care about the cars near me, so I don't strobe, ever.
Drivers coming from the opposite direction might try to overtake a car in front of them and might hit you, there can be a crossing and they might hit you, they may be even willing to park their car on the opposite side... and hit you. How on earth can you be saying there is no danger from cars coming from the opposite direction ?
Besides, what exactly is a non-disprovable assertion and which argument is weak ?

A solid white light in daytime or a slow blink probably can't do harm, so knock yourself out.
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Old 07-14-20, 05:45 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by holytrousers View Post
It's not about being seen but rather about being noticed. We see many things but don't necessarily pay attention to them..
If they ever hit critical mass the same will be true of flashers.
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Old 07-14-20, 05:49 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Trakhak View Post
As with another poster above, I use reflective ankle bands. They're functionally as visible as any flashing or strobe lights, and they instantly identify me as a bike rider to any drivers in the vicinity. Far less annoying to drivers and other riders, too.

My helmet mounted blinky light is seen first thanks to the Earth's curvature riding our long-straight FL roads.
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Old 07-14-20, 12:56 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
I am completely skeptical that the flashing light has any impact at all in that situation. The problem with those are obstructed view and you can't magically see the strobe around corners.
Not sure where you got the idea I was referring to obstructed views. I'm referring to unobstructed views and driver behavior that confirms they saw me. You are entitled to your skepticism but not to rewrite my personal circumstances.
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Old 07-14-20, 01:36 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by bobwysiwyg View Post
Not sure where you got the idea I was referring to obstructed views. I'm referring to unobstructed views and driver behavior that confirms they saw me. You are entitled to your skepticism but not to rewrite my personal circumstances.
I was walking with a friend across a traffic light controlled intersection. It was full dark out. I had my bike with me and the front light was on and flashing A driver still made a turn and I had to thump the hood of his car so he'd not run us over. How he could not see that flashing light (not strobe) is beyond me.

The risk that i see with a lot of so called bicycle safety things like flashing/strobing lights is that the bicyclist thinks that a driver sees them when in reality the driver does NOT see them. In most cases what the driver sees is the motion of the bicyclist/bicycle and THEN the light.

Oh, do NOT rely on making eye contact with a driver as a preventative measure. Many studies have shown that again t he driver appears to be looking at the bicyclist but is actually focused on something BEYOND the bicyclist. Watch the vehicle wheels not the driver.

Cheers

Last edited by Miele Man; 07-14-20 at 01:37 PM. Reason: OOPS! Forgot to mention that it was dark
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Old 07-14-20, 03:17 PM
  #33  
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Best to stay out of the night zone.

Skål!

-mr. bill
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Old 07-14-20, 04:58 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
How many road bikes today come with a reflector much less a light that most states require?
If you mean by 'come with' the ones sold new at retail, then 100% of the ones sold legally in the USA come with reflectors.

​​​​​​https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/16/1512.16
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Old 07-14-20, 05:05 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by 63rickert View Post
I do get splitting headaches from your strobe lights.

Ride at night? Forget it, can’t do that anymore. You have taken all that away from me.
Wow, that's awful.

How do you handle the flashing lightbars on police cars, ambulances, fire trucks, utility company vehicles, etc?
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Old 07-14-20, 06:30 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
Best to stay out of the night zone.
Skål!
-mr. bill
8:30PM and in 3hrs 30 minutes it's out the door for another Midnight Madness 100 Miler. Doesn't matter that it's 88F with 70% humidity right now meaning the Heat Index is 100F but a least the sun ain't shining.
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Old 07-15-20, 01:33 AM
  #37  
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Cyclist should expect more safety
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Old 07-15-20, 05:03 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by holytrousers View Post
Drivers coming from the opposite direction might try to overtake a car in front of them and might hit you, there can be a crossing and they might hit you, they may be even willing to park their car on the opposite side... and hit you. How on earth can you be saying there is no danger from cars coming from the opposite direction ?
Besides, what exactly is a non-disprovable assertion and which argument is weak ?


The non-disprovable point is your assertion that it's only about attention and not vision. Focusing attention disproportionately on riders far away from you makes riders safer. You draw the drivers attention away from whatever objects are in the driver's immediate proximity. Attention is finite, if you've drawn the drivers attention to you across the street, you've probably made me less safe if I'm directly in front of him.

Your examples prove my points. Those cars aren't a threat to me until they cross over. Strobe disorientation effects get stronger as you get closer (google the inverse square law if you don't understand why), so as those cars get close to me, I'm now shining a light in their eyes that makes it very difficult for them to judge where I actually am. You're just missing the point, strobes make you more noticeable when it doesn't matter and obscures you when it does matter.

They should be illegal.

I have no problem with a slow blink rate, but strobing is ridiculously unsafe for the rider using it and riders around him/her.
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Old 07-15-20, 05:12 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
Wow, that's awful.

How do you handle the flashing lightbars on police cars, ambulances, fire trucks, utility company vehicles, etc?

Well, I've seen them on the first three and on snow plows, but they're not standard issue on cars so I don't really encounter them too much. You realize that's for emergency vehicles to warn you that you need to get out of their way and they're often accompanied by a very loud siren, right? They don't run the strobes when they're just driving around. Guess why.

I don't get the attitude in your post, we have to put up with these bad things in an emergency, so you should have to put up with my assault lights?
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Old 07-15-20, 06:15 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
The non-disprovable point is your assertion that it's only about attention and not vision. Focusing attention disproportionately on riders far away from you makes riders safer. You draw the drivers attention away from whatever objects are in the driver's immediate proximity. Attention is finite, if you've drawn the drivers attention to you across the street, you've probably made me less safe if I'm directly in front of him.

Your examples prove my points. Those cars aren't a threat to me until they cross over. Strobe disorientation effects get stronger as you get closer (google the inverse square law if you don't understand why), so as those cars get close to me, I'm now shining a light in their eyes that makes it very difficult for them to judge where I actually am. You're just missing the point, strobes make you more noticeable when it doesn't matter and obscures you when it does matter.

They should be illegal.

I have no problem with a slow blink rate, but strobing is ridiculously unsafe for the rider using it and riders around him/her.
Actually, in a LOT of jurisdictions strobe lights on bicycles ARE illegal. However trying to convince people not to sell tehm or use them seems to be an exercise in futility.

Flashing or pulsing lights aren't nearly as bad as a strobe light but even those flashing or pulsing lights can be bad in low light conditions if they're overly bright.

Cheers
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Old 07-15-20, 06:44 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Well, I've seen them on the first three and on snow plows, but they're not standard issue on cars so I don't really encounter them too much. You realize that's for emergency vehicles to warn you that you need to get out of their way and they're often accompanied by a very loud siren, right? They don't run the strobes when they're just driving around. Guess why.

I don't get the attitude in your post, we have to put up with these bad things in an emergency, so you should have to put up with my assault lights?
Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Actually, in a LOT of jurisdictions strobe lights on bicycles ARE illegal. However trying to convince people not to sell tehm or use them seems to be an exercise in futility.

Flashing or pulsing lights aren't nearly as bad as a strobe light but even those flashing or pulsing lights can be bad in low light conditions if they're overly bright.

Cheers
Logical arguments are not persuasive to people who are literally incapable of assessing risk and make decisions based on irrational fear.
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Old 07-15-20, 08:00 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Actually, in a LOT of jurisdictions strobe lights on bicycles ARE illegal. However trying to convince people not to sell tehm or use them seems to be an exercise in futility.

Flashing or pulsing lights aren't nearly as bad as a strobe light but even those flashing or pulsing lights can be bad in low light conditions if they're overly bright.

Cheers

Agreed, but that's a function of their brightness, not the blinking.
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Old 07-15-20, 08:07 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
Logical arguments are not persuasive to people who are literally incapable of assessing risk and make decisions based on irrational fear.

I suspect some of these people also view their absurdly over-powered and inappropriate lights as status symbols.

I argue with their nonsense only because I hope it prevents someone who hasn't looked into the subject from buying their crap. In some cases, I mean the word "buying" quite literally.
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Old 07-15-20, 08:18 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by bobwysiwyg View Post
Not sure where you got the idea I was referring to obstructed views. I'm referring to unobstructed views and driver behavior that confirms they saw me. You are entitled to your skepticism but not to rewrite my personal circumstances.

No, you referred to "exiting a commercial driveway or parking lot". If there isn't an obstructed view, I don't see why there's any reason to believe that strobing is going to make the driver more aware of your presence than if you're not strobing. By the time your headlight is going to be in their peripheral vision, they're already in the driveway, far too late to do anything.

Y'all are playing a game where you think that if you can come up with one situation where strobing might make you safer, that will negate all of the arguments against using them. Ultimately, though, it's really obvious that you're far more likely to get hit because of the strobing than you are to avoid being hit because of it.
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Old 07-15-20, 08:48 AM
  #45  
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I don't want to offend anyone here, or come across as downplaying a potential risk...But I believe that some (many? most? all? I don't know) epileptics don't have drivers' licenses. So perhaps, as far as motorists are concerned, it's not really an issue? Or at least less of an issue?

I'm not arguing whether flashing lights are annoying, or get people's attention, or anything else.
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Old 07-15-20, 10:12 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
Wow, that's awful.

How do you handle the flashing lightbars on police cars, ambulances, fire trucks, utility company vehicles, etc?
Mars lights on police cars are not a problem, at least not for me. Automotive turn signals are not a problem either. Flashers on traffic barricades or advertising signs are not a problem. Old stuff that was engineered correctly.

Someone upthread, someone omniscient who can see inside my head, claims that I just made a choice not to ride at night. I do still occasionally do short errands at night. Short. Local. What happens is someone on a bike turns around a corner and comes into line of fire. Grab the brakes. Immediate stop. Avert my eyes and move to edge of road. By feel. There is no longer any possibility whatever of me attempting to operate a motor vehicle at night. Even were it a health emergency for a family member I would not attempt to drive a car at night.

My bike does have a light. Plenty powerful. Lights up the pavement. Has a beam pattern like an automotive headlight. Has a horizontal cutoff so as not to blind other road users. Take a half mile ride for groceries and someone is sure to remark on that light and say nice things. And then do they ever unload on riders using the aircraft landing lights. If you use the high power flashers you are busy making enemies. Just not a good thing to be creating angry upset drivers who hate bikes.

About aiming lights. Locally almost everyone aims the lights up, straight into drivers eyes. If you ask them about it they will say they want to harass drivers. If anyone has lights aimed at road it is probably because the light slipped on the mount.

Slow flash works extremely well. I am obviously sensitive and a slow flash does not bother me at all. If it were something like a nighttime century a slow flash would eventually get to me, ordinary circumstances it is fine.

If you just don’t care about any road user but yourself none of this matters.
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Old 07-15-20, 11:19 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
The non-disprovable point is your assertion that it's only about attention and not vision. Focusing attention disproportionately on riders far away from you makes riders safer. You draw the drivers attention away from whatever objects are in the driver's immediate proximity. Attention is finite, if you've drawn the drivers attention to you across the street, you've probably made me less safe if I'm directly in front of him.

Your examples prove my points. Those cars aren't a threat to me until they cross over. Strobe disorientation effects get stronger as you get closer (google the inverse square law if you don't understand why), so as those cars get close to me, I'm now shining a light in their eyes that makes it very difficult for them to judge where I actually am. You're just missing the point, strobes make you more noticeable when it doesn't matter and obscures you when it does matter.

They should be illegal.

I have no problem with a slow blink rate, but strobing is ridiculously unsafe for the rider using it and riders around him/her.
Here is a non-disprovable point : i have the impression that you are arguing for the sake of argument.
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Old 07-15-20, 11:52 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by holytrousers View Post
Here is a non-disprovable point : i have the impression that you are arguing for the sake of argument.
The simple single fact is that strobe lights are illegal in most areas of North America. It's not just their brightness level, which is often ridiculously high but also their high rate of flashing that other road users find so objectionable.

Ah, check this out. Ontario, Canada.

https://imgur.com/j1W9xzM


excerpt:

"
CLOSE

69

Posted by
u/designatedcultmember
4 months ago

Strobe Lights Update: Flashing lights on the front of bikes is ILLEGAL



DiscussionFour months ago I wrote a post about the dangers of strobe lights in public spaces, and listed some of the things that have triggered my own photosensitive epilepsy while outside. As I stated in that post, flashing lights can cause seizures in people with photosensitive epilepsy and this always has a risk of death attached to it. One of the main problems I was having was with strobe lights that are affixed on bicycles. They are everywhere.

After a rather long chain of emails, and the advice of councilors and ministries , I emailed the Ministry of Transportation asking about how we can put tighter restrictions on flashing lights on the street. They emailed me back saying that there are already restrictions on this, and anybody who has affixed flashing lights of any kind on the front of their bike is breaking the law.

( A screenshot of the full email is here: https://imgur.com/j1W9xzM )

An excerpt:

"In terms of lamps on bicycles, I would like to point out that bicycles are required to carry a type of headlamp on the front that displays a white or amber light in order to be visible at night and in adverse weather conditions, similar to the requirement for headlamps on motor vehicles. This requirement is set out in subsection 62 (17) of the Highway Traffic Act. That section, in subsection (17.1), also requires a red lamp or reflector on the rear of the bicycle. However, only the rear red lamp is permitted to display alternating or flashing light*.*"

Cheers
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Old 07-15-20, 12:55 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
The simple single fact is that strobe lights are illegal in most areas of North America. It's not just their brightness level, which is often ridiculously high but also their high rate of flashing that other road users find so objectionable.

Ah, check this out. Ontario, Canada.

https://imgur.com/j1W9xzM
....

Cheers
Section 168: "...motor vehicle equipped with multiple beam headlamps...."
Section 169: "No person shall use highbeam headlamps that produce alternating flashes of white light..."

[emphasis above mine]

Free internut legal advice is worth every penny. But especially when they WARN you that they don't stand by their advice.

And while your nutty "legal" advice is not even valid in Ontario, it's completely nonsensical in other jurisdictions.

Always fascinating to discover what bees people fear under their bonnet.

Skål!

-mr. bill

Last edited by mr_bill; 07-15-20 at 01:17 PM.
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Old 07-15-20, 01:02 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by tcs View Post
If you mean by 'come with' the ones sold new at retail, then 100% of the ones sold legally in the USA come with reflectors.

​​​​​​https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/16/1512.16

No where in the linked article does it say a bicycle cannot be sold without a reflector. My new bicycle did not come with a reflector.

Typically low end discount store bikes come with reflectors. Surprisingly I don't see many of the high dollar bikes with them.
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