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Topic # 124585 12-Jul-2013 22:25
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I've noticed that the lights used by some cyclists at night time are getting brighter and brighter - to the point that they are ridiculously bright and they are not being used correctly.

Several times in recent weeks I have been temporarily blinded whilst driving due to the strength of lights used by a cyclist coming towards me. And with a number of cyclist now wrongly choosing to wear the lights on their heads it is worse because if they turn their head towards you... FLASH!

And the bright, fast flashing rate of some of the other lights is an outright distraction to other road users!

From the NZTA website:
When considering lights it is important to be mindful that:
  • Headlights should be attached to handlebars and pointing down.
  • Your lights can be a hazard if used incorrectly. You must not use cycle lighting equipment in such a way that it dazzles, confuses, or distracts so as to endanger the safety of other road users.
Correct use of cycle lighting will make your cycling experience safer and more enjoyable, while ensuring other road users are not at risk.


So, if you are a cyclist wearing your light on your head, please move it down to the handlebars and point it downwards.

If you are a cyclist with a stupidly strong, or ridiculously distracting flashing light - please consider changing it. I am sure you guys don't like oncoming cars with their lights on full.


Case and point was the cyclist I saw 3 nights ago who was wearing a light on his head that was so strong it lit the entire 3-storey face of the building he was passing!!

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  Reply # 854662 12-Jul-2013 22:32
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Yes this is becoming a MAJOR pain in the arse around here.
I had to nearly stop the other night because the cyclist coming at me was on a cycle track next to the road, so was on my left. They had a massive lamp on their head. Was easily over 55w.
If my poverty pack spec Corolla had power windows I'd have wound the L/h one down and given him 100w of angry swear words.

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  Reply # 854675 12-Jul-2013 23:08
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Would you rather see the cyclist or not see them?

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  Reply # 854676 12-Jul-2013 23:22
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There is a difference between seeing them and being blinded to them, to the point where you can't see other hazards.




 


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  Reply # 854697 12-Jul-2013 23:55
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Simple question - Would cyclists like it if as motorists we had some powerful spotlights fitted, pointing slightly right but level?

No, of course not.

I identify with the OP - there are some crazy powerful (actually dazzling) cycle lights now and they are often helmet mounted.

I completely understand you want to be seen at night (and I want to see you) but it's dangerous and discourteous to wear dazzling lights and point them into motorist's eyes.

Cheers - N

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  Reply # 854721 13-Jul-2013 01:53
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I used to cycle a lot, but not so much at the moment, and have also been blinded by these super bright lights on other cyclists helmets. Very annoying!

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  Reply # 854744 13-Jul-2013 07:42
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jfanning: Would you rather see the cyclist or not see them?


We're not talking about the legally required bike mounted lamps designed to make them visible.
We're talking about the super bright head mounted lamps designed for night trail riding

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  Reply # 854746 13-Jul-2013 07:45
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I to have also noticed it as an issue, particularly with the strobe effect when a cyclist is heading towards you.

I wonder when we'll see the first elipetic suffer a seisure and cause an accident as a result of these?

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  Reply # 854751 13-Jul-2013 08:14
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Noticed this for the first time the other night, and if their head is tracking your vehicle eg. Waiting for you to pass by in order to cross, the light becomes dangerous.

Jon

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  Reply # 854755 13-Jul-2013 08:50
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I cycle to and from work every day. I have a helmet-mounted light.

I travel at a fairly fast pace, so I need to see the road a distance away from where I currently am. Pointing down too far is pointless. If my light was on my handlebars, it would have to be more level to light up the road for me. With it on my helmet, it is pointing down at a far greater angle. This lessens the potential for dazzling drivers.

I also find that anything less than the brightest level does not light the road up enough to identity potential hazards. The edge of the road is generally not the smoothest or most debris-free surface.

Before I have all of you hunting me down :) I'll finish by saying that I always take care to keep the beam away from drivers, but will lift my head at them briefly - the equivalent of flashing my lights - if drivers on side streets go to pull out in my path.

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  Reply # 854759 13-Jul-2013 09:00
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No cycle headlight is ever going to be as bright as a car headlight, pointed directly at you or not. Yeah fair enough, they should not wear them head mounted and try to angle them down if possible but give them a break, they are just trying to be seen and not killed or seriously injured. We are talking a life and death situation here for the cyclist, the most that could reasonably be expected to happen to a driver in a car/bike collision is an annoying insurance payout.

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  Reply # 854760 13-Jul-2013 09:06
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What happens when the car driver facing them is blinded?
There is a reason there are height restrictions on vehicle headlamps.
I'm surprised the police are not using it against these cyclists already.

The other issue is the type of beam used. They are often a flood beam, not directional.
There really is no excuse for using them in public roads. They are dangerous.

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  Reply # 854761 13-Jul-2013 09:07
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Oh and FYI I'm a cyclist too

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  Reply # 854764 13-Jul-2013 09:19
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cgreenwood: No cycle headlight is ever going to be as bright as a car headlight, pointed directly at you or not. Yeah fair enough, they should not wear them head mounted and try to angle them down if possible but give them a break, they are just trying to be seen and not killed or seriously injured. We are talking a life and death situation here for the cyclist, the most that could reasonably be expected to happen to a driver in a car/bike collision is an annoying insurance payout.


Plenty of bike lights are way brighter than a normal low beam headlight.

My problem is why are bikes allowed flashing lights? Makes judging distance from the cycle really hard and is distracting.




Richard rich.ms



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  Reply # 854776 13-Jul-2013 09:38
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GregV: I cycle to and from work every day. I have a helmet-mounted light.

I travel at a fairly fast pace, so I need to see the road a distance away from where I currently am. Pointing down too far is pointless. If my light was on my handlebars, it would have to be more level to light up the road for me. With it on my helmet, it is pointing down at a far greater angle. This lessens the potential for dazzling drivers.

I also find that anything less than the brightest level does not light the road up enough to identity potential hazards. The edge of the road is generally not the smoothest or most debris-free surface.

Before I have all of you hunting me down :) I'll finish by saying that I always take care to keep the beam away from drivers, but will lift my head at them briefly - the equivalent of flashing my lights - if drivers on side streets go to pull out in my path.


I wish all cyclist were as sensible as you with their lights. Unfortunately there is a rapidly increasing trend of crazy bike lighting happpening.

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  Reply # 854777 13-Jul-2013 09:38
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A point against a handlebar-mounted light; it lights up wherever the handlebars are facing. The continual adjustments being made while riding make this a pretty ineffective place to mount a light that is used to see the road ahead. Perfectly good place for a 'here I am' light though. Imagine if car headlights were attached to the steering rack, and moved as you moved the steering wheel.

Having a helmet-mounted light lets me light up where I am planning to go, not where my handlebars are currently facing.

A flashing rear-facing light is essential, as a steady light soon gets lost in the general wash of night-time lights. I have a small flashing front light, but would never strobe my main light.

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