Friday, 4 January 2013

Cycling Without Lights!

I have just come back from a quick trip to the supermarket to pick up some essential supplies - now that Christmas is over. I used the car and thought I'd share something I have just seen - which is sadly all to common.

I was travelling along a section of road that is quite narrow, has high hedges either side and sporadic street lighting. In the distance I could just and I do mean just make out what looked like at first to be a jogger running at the side of the road. I thought to myself that their outfit which consist of no fluorescent strips, or similar was unwise as they could not be easily seen.

As I came closer, to my amazement I saw that it was not a jogger but a cyclist! They had no lights at all, no hi-vis and no reflectors - not even ones on the pedals!! Added to this was the fact that they were wearing dark clothing - possibly all black - with hood up and even a pair of dark coloured gloves. The effect of all of this was to render them almost invisible!

The car closest to them must not have seen the cyclist at all until the last moment but he had to slam the brakes on. I suspect the cyclist manoeuvred out further on to the road to avoid a parked car and the driver closest just didn't see.

Thankfully, no injuries etc.., but when I passed the cyclist and looked in my rear view mirror, they were gone...swallowed by the night.

There really is no excuse for this. When I recached the supermarket I quickly went around getting what I wanted and saw a pair of LED lights (front and rear) for £4.99. Surely that would be within anyones budget.

As I said at the start of this blog post, it seems to be an ever growing problem. It is illegal here in the UK to ride a bicycle at night without lights but there seems little effort to enforce it. I only hope that whoever that rider was, they think about getting some lights!

3 comments:

  1. Well said OB man, utter madness and illegal as you say. I despair when I see cyclists as you have this evening and I have stopped on occasions when I have seen folk running around where we are, (having almost run them over), running with no reflectives on along dark country roads.
    Some people may want to die but please don't use me as the instrument of your demise.

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  2. Currently working late shift and I see cyclists all over the place in central london without lights on, drives me crazy. Sometimes they just have a rear light flashing but if your changing lanes etc your not going to see them when you pulling out kinda of thing either.

    Another thing I have noticed as well is that people actually put things in front of their lights. Rear racks with big bags and the light is on the seat post so no one can see the light, long coats, dieing batteries.

    Just wish the police or someone would clamp down on it some how cause it would sure help with lessening the accidents

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  3. The trouble is the police have far too many other things to do, like filing in paperwork or persecuting some poor sod for protecting his wife, house, car form some loony intent on mischief. Like you I despair of some cyclists, no lights, wearing earphones? How does that work? We have two things to keep us alive on the road, eyes and ears, so they cover one of them up! Crazy!!!!!!!!!!!!

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