I wish I could share your optimism, Carolyn, but the preponderance of ineptitude that I see on a daily basis only serves to reaffirm my disheartened mindset that any non-cycling motorist is simply in their own little fantasy world when behind the wheel.
Case in point: I was at an intersection about a week ago. Imagine this, I am sitting in the middle through lane. To my left is the turn lane. To my right is another through lane. The light goes green for the turn lane and ONLY the right lane light goes green. The green light for my lane had apparently burned out. The left turning traffic began to proceed. The right-lane traffic began to move forward. But the bonehead in front of me sat still, completely immobile. I counted to about 10, thinking he was still texting or surfing the web on his phone and still, nothing! I politely gave a couple of quick, short beeps on my horn and he held his arms up in the air as if to say, "But my light isn't green!" And continued to sit there.
Seriously?! You think that only the lanes AROUND you are going to be allowed to go...even a lane that is running parallel to you?! But, when your red light goes out, and everyone else's heading in your same direction is green, you think because yours isn't, you can't go?
I think flashing an image will help to avoid crashes. While I agree it won't keep ALL crashes from happening, as there are always drivers distracted to the point of simply not noticing, I think there is some real promise with this invention. Honestly, I think most motorists ARE paying attention; it's just the ones that are not that cause the problems which bring more attention to the issue. I'm sure the device needs some tweaking, as all new inventions do, but this is certainly a step in the right direction.
Thanks, Don, for sharing another good article.
"God gave you your body as a gift, so you should take care of it." - My Mom
That's awesome, Don. My only concern would be the distance at which the image is projected. Too far, and you'd basically illuminate the vehicle in front you. Too close, and it'd fall in the driver's blind spot and go unnoticed. While I think this is a fantastic idea, and am completely for such positive and momentous strides, the fact of the matter is that most motorists are completely oblivious to their surroundings. Adding a green LASER projected image to the road will do little good to make an already inattentive driver more attentive.
The bottom line is that all drivers simply need to be more attentive and, more importantly, when the (sadly) inevitable happens, the responding officer should be more inclined to cite the driver than the cyclist, unless witness accounts can substantiate the driver's claim that ''he came outta nowhere!'' While I don't believe that all cyclists are without fault all of the time, I know of very few cyclists who are unsafe riders...at least in my area. Admittedly, NYC seems to be quite a bit different than what I'm accustomed to.
Regardless of my personal feelings about motorist vs. cyclist safety, this is yet another great post from you. Thank you so much!
"To make commuting safer for both cyclists and drivers, a British student at the University of Brighton has come up with a device that alerts drivers of the presence of a rapidly approaching bicycle by projecting a bright green laser image of a bike on to the road ahead."
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