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Red light running

GpfanukGpfanuk Posts: 142
edited February 2013 in Road general
Being a newbie to road cycling and clip in pedals and cleats, a thought occurred to me after a slightly scary ride into work yesterday.... As we are constantly debating the rights and wrongs of running red lights I realised that the majority of cyclists that I saw running lights were doing so just to avoid unclipping in poor road/traffic conditions.
Do you ever do this just to avoid those start up clip in fumbles? just wondered if grab handles on close by street furniture would help?
Muddy Fox Hardtail Circa 1998
Triban3
Felt AR5
ANC Halfords Peugeot (restored and ridden at Eroica 2015)
A box of bits that will make a fine Harry Hall when I get round to it.
Raleigh tandem of as yet unknown vintage - ongoing restoration for Eroica 2016
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Posts

  • To be honest, unclipping and reclipping is far less fraught than trying to get alongside a handle to rest on. The only time reclipping is a pig is when you're on a steep hill and struggle to gain enough momentum from the first pedal stroke.

    Running red lights is idiocy, pure and simple. While we all have the crossing that we know we can sneak through on red, is it really worth it for that one time another driver does something stupid and out of the ordinary, only to knock you down because they simply didn't expect to see you coming from that direction.
    "Of all the paths you chose in life, make sure some of them are dirt..."
  • diydiy Posts: 6,680
    Learn to track stand - its not that hard. Running red lights sends a message to other road users something along the lines of "I am exempt from the rules of the road, so please give me no respect or courtesy".

    At least that is what I am thinking when I see it.
  • For me its a no no.

    We all want respect and safety from other road users such as car/van/bus/truck drivers yet we often can't be bothered ourselves when it comes the basic rules of the road. Yet we all cry foul when a cyclist is injured & rant that road users have no respect for us.

    Of course this is my own opinion & I'm sure that others will disagree - but I just think it sends the wrong message to others.
    Pain hurts much less if its topped off with beating your mates to top of a climb.
  • For me its a no no.

    We all want respect and safety from other road users such as car/van/bus/truck drivers yet we often can't be bothered ourselves when it comes the basic rules of the road. Yet we all cry foul when a cyclist is injured & rant that road users have no respect for us.

    Of course this is my own opinion & I'm sure that others will disagree - but I just think it sends the wrong message to others.

    Nail, hammer, head. [/ENDTHREAD] :mrgreen:
    "Of all the paths you chose in life, make sure some of them are dirt..."
  • CamusCamus Posts: 189
    When I first started using clipless I dreaded the old red traffic light on a hill scenario, if there's a flat section before a red on a hill, I'll stop on the flat and wait there, if not I just slow down incrementally till I'm crawling towards the light but able to stay upright and balanced, by the time you're there it has changed.
  • Monty DogMonty Dog Posts: 20,614
    Learn to read the road ahead, particularly if it's a regular journey and get to know the light phasing sequence - nothing better than hitting the stop line at full tilt as the light goes green! Alternatively, learn to track stand and do enjoy standing start sprints - it's good training
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
  • fast as fuppfast as fupp Posts: 2,277
    folk ride thru reds because theyre knobheads

    end of.
    'dont forget lads, one evertonian is worth twenty kopites'
  • folk ride thru reds because theyre knobheads

    end of.

    Yep. I do it. In a car too if I think I can get away with it.
  • lotus49lotus49 Posts: 763
    I never have and I never shall.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,003
    I've done it. Drove through a red light at 2.30am when I was a young lad, cos I thought nobody was around. Turns out the police were around, and I got 3 points. Not BC points though, unfortunately....
  • typekittytypekitty Posts: 188
    I've done it a few times at pedestrian crossings (on hills, no one about) but have stopped in the interest of appearing to be a sensible road user. It's poor practice and cyclists are already regarded as a lawless bunch.

    I now just roll up to a light – by the time I'm there, it's usually turned.
  • plowmarplowmar Posts: 1,032
    Where I live there are lights that only change if a car / bus approaches ( have previously posted re that) but this morning as the lights for the opposing traffic were in the process of changing i.e. on amber a car overtook me on my set of lights - red. We are all idiots at some time but increasing common sense allows you to survive.
  • 964cup964cup Posts: 1,359
    Hark at all the angels! There's 18 sets of lights on my 9.4k commute; about one every 500 metres. Do I stop at every red, even when I can see it's clear? What would you do?
  • 964cup wrote:
    Hark at all the angels! There's 18 sets of lights on my 9.4k commute; about one every 500 metres. Do I stop at every red, even when I can see it's clear? What would you do?


    Funny you should say that as thats exactly what the car driver said to the police after he knocked me off my bike many years ago "I saw that it was clear and went for it I just didn't see him" Meaning me on the floor being tended to by the paramedics. Thankfully I'm alive to tell the tale, however others may not be, hence the laws being in place & applicable to everyone whether you like them or not they are there to protect everyone.
    Pain hurts much less if its topped off with beating your mates to top of a climb.
  • LegendLustLegendLust Posts: 1,022
    964cup wrote:
    Hark at all the angels! There's 18 sets of lights on my 9.4k commute; about one every 500 metres. Do I stop at every red, even when I can see it's clear? What would you do?

    9.4k commute. Why not go a longer route to avoid the lights?
  • Gpfanuk wrote:
    Being a newbie to road cycling and clip in pedals and cleats, a thought occurred to me after a slightly scary ride into work yesterday.... As we are constantly debating the rights and wrongs of running red lights I realised that the majority of cyclists that I saw running lights were doing so just to avoid unclipping in poor road/traffic conditions.
    Do you ever do this just to avoid those start up clip in fumbles? just wondered if grab handles on close by street furniture would help?

    what was it that brought you to this rather odd realisation, when generally the consensus is that they're a bunch of selfish planks who do it because they know the chances of getting pulled over are practically zero.

    the usual self deluding excuse conjured up by the RLJ gang is that they're doing it for safety, not because twisting their foot by 15 or so degrees is an onerous task.
  • 964cup964cup Posts: 1,359
    LegendLust wrote:
    964cup wrote:
    Hark at all the angels! There's 18 sets of lights on my 9.4k commute; about one every 500 metres. Do I stop at every red, even when I can see it's clear? What would you do?

    9.4k commute. Why not go a longer route to avoid the lights?
    Because I live in London, where there are lights every 500 metres. Everywhere. And constant nose-to-tail traffic to wiggle round. And &^$£*%"!*£$ buses with their complete inability to leave space on the inside and their filthy exhaust farting out black toxins on the outside. And spacktards on ill-tuned two stroke pizza bikes filling my lungs with yet more censored every time they pull away. And drivers with no idea what their mirrors are for who've not heard that driving while on the phone, eating a McDonalds and smoking all at the same time may not be strictly legal. And pedestrians who never look before they walk straight out into traffic even though there's a pedestrian crossing 20 metres further up the road, mobile glued to one ear and stupid oversize DJ-wannabe headphones blocking the other. And bimbling wobbly commuters with many many gears but no idea how they work and no clue that they might be sharing what little space is left with someone who's trying to make progress. And cycle couriers on brakeless fixies who absolutely positively cannot ever be overtaken by anyone, especially a mamil in a hi-vis jacket on a hybrid. And blinkin' Strava to tell me I was 30 seconds quicker in to work yesterday.

    And you want me to make my route longer?
  • 964cup wrote:
    LegendLust wrote:
    964cup wrote:
    Hark at all the angels! There's 18 sets of lights on my 9.4k commute; about one every 500 metres. Do I stop at every red, even when I can see it's clear? What would you do?

    9.4k commute. Why not go a longer route to avoid the lights?
    Because I live in London, where there are lights every 500 metres. Everywhere. And constant nose-to-tail traffic to wiggle round. And &^$£*%"!*£$ buses with their complete inability to leave space on the inside and their filthy exhaust farting out black toxins on the outside. And spacktards on ill-tuned two stroke pizza bikes filling my lungs with yet more censored every time they pull away. And drivers with no idea what their mirrors are for who've not heard that driving while on the phone, eating a McDonalds and smoking all at the same time may not be strictly legal. And pedestrians who never look before they walk straight out into traffic even though there's a pedestrian crossing 20 metres further up the road, mobile glued to one ear and stupid oversize DJ-wannabe headphones blocking the other. And bimbling wobbly commuters with many many gears but no idea how they work and no clue that they might be sharing what little space is left with someone who's trying to make progress. And cycle couriers on brakeless fixies who absolutely positively cannot ever be overtaken by anyone, especially a mamil in a hi-vis jacket on a hybrid. And blinkin' Strava to tell me I was 30 seconds quicker in to work yesterday.

    And you want me to make my route longer?

    not the best example for defending committing a criminal act yourself.
  • JoeblackJoeblack Posts: 829
    I run red lights all the time, only when it's safe to do so, it's ok though because I'm in charge of me and you don't have to follow ;)

    As for handholds, no thanks!! I'd rather not have things sticking out into the road!! :roll:
    One plays football, tennis or golf, one does not play at cycling
  • nolightnolight Posts: 261
    964cup wrote:
    Hark at all the angels! There's 18 sets of lights on my 9.4k commute; about one every 500 metres. Do I stop at every red, even when I can see it's clear? What would you do?

    Yes.
  • nolightnolight Posts: 261
    I try to reduce unclipping and clipping, but not by beating red lights except at pedestrian crossing only red lights. I sometimes beat orange lights.
  • diydiy Posts: 6,680
    very recently I was first on scene at a fatal motorcycle accident. Here we have a dead person in the road, unable to defend himself, unable to say his version of what happened. All around we have those involved chatting about the crash, discussing what happened, inadvertently getting their stories mixed with each other's facts, excuses and perception. It took 20 mins for police and ambulance to arrive, though a faster response would not have helped. Plenty of time for the true facts to be twisted, though I am not saying they were.

    A few people started talking about how he was tanking it, how he must have been doing over 100 etc. It builds a picture for plod, that we have a tragic accident caused by poor riding. If you are riding badly, jumping reds, taking risks and are involved in an accident, where you are unconscious or worse, I guarantee that the same will happen to you.

    Before you know it, your earlier actions of inpatients and risk taking, will be mixed up in the cause of your crash, even if its an idiot on a mobile who didn't look.
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,028
    @964cup ... And a big yes from me to. No excuses, no bs, no lame justifications. Just the rules of the road. If you don't like it, go another way
  • peatpeat Posts: 1,243
    If you can't clip in/out - dont ride clipless OR stop naval-gazing and actually look ahead, slow & downshift.

    No excuse for running reds.
  • plowmarplowmar Posts: 1,032
    Cat / Pigeons, If it is soo bad for a short commute and all the inherent dangers why not walk. There I've said it but its what my daughter did when she was at Imperial.
  • When I started cycling on the hybrid last summer, before I joined up here, I was a RLJ - only when clear etc etc...

    Then after I got the Defy, signed up here, and started understanding all the issues around drivers' attitudes to cyclists, and listened to some of the debates around here, I became convinced that we owe it to one another to set good examples as road users.

    TBH, it's not about safety, since I'm sure any one of us can decide whether it genuinely is clear to go or not.

    It's about the perception of cyclists as rule-breaking careless idiots that I now see as partly my responsibility to change - or at least offset.

    So I wait (im)patiently at red lights... I give way to cars when letting them through will ease their journey and prevent them having to sit behind me... and I wave a thank you whenever someone is nice to me on the road.

    Sometimes I feel like a mug, but it seems like the right thing to do.
    Is the gorilla tired yet?
  • BustacappBustacapp Posts: 971
    use platforms.

    /thread.
  • diydiy Posts: 6,680

    So I wait (im)patiently at red lights... I give way to cars when letting them through will ease their journey and prevent them having to sit behind me... and I wave a thank you whenever someone is nice to me on the road.

    Sometimes I feel like a mug, but it seems like the right thing to do.

    not a mug in my eyes.
  • DellsinhoDellsinho Posts: 100
    nolight wrote:
    964cup wrote:
    Hark at all the angels! There's 18 sets of lights on my 9.4k commute; about one every 500 metres. Do I stop at every red, even when I can see it's clear?

    Yes.

    +1

    964Cup; You can't break the law simply because you're inconvenienced.

    Incredible thinking.
    Canyon Roadlite
    Boardman Hybrid
    Dolan FXE
  • typekittytypekitty Posts: 188
    When I started cycling on the hybrid last summer, before I joined up here, I was a RLJ - only when clear etc etc...

    Then after I got the Defy, signed up here, and started understanding all the issues around drivers' attitudes to cyclists, and listened to some of the debates around here, I became convinced that we owe it to one another to set good examples as road users.

    TBH, it's not about safety, since I'm sure any one of us can decide whether it genuinely is clear to go or not.

    It's about the perception of cyclists as rule-breaking careless idiots that I now see as partly my responsibility to change - or at least offset.

    So I wait (im)patiently at red lights... I give way to cars when letting them through will ease their journey and prevent them having to sit behind me... and I wave a thank you whenever someone is nice to me on the road.

    Sometimes I feel like a mug, but it seems like the right thing to do.

    Well said.
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