Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby melbear on Mon 12/Jan/15 11:41pm

so it was my first time riding on busy roads today and I came to pass a car that was parked but there was a car coming up behind me. I wasn't sure if I had to wait for the car to go past before I moved out to pass the parked car or if that car had to give way to me. I kept on going but they got extremely close to me as they passed. I did get it on camera but didn't know who was in the wrong.
I would appreciate any tips for cycling in traffic. Thanks.
melbear
Member for: 2 years 11 months

Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby Colin on Tue 13/Jan/15 12:09am

Move out early when passing parked cars. This signals your intentions to other traffic.

Staying left and darting out to pass in the final metres is dangerous.
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby melbear on Tue 13/Jan/15 12:15am

Colin wrote:Move out early when passing parked cars. This signals your intentions to other traffic.

Staying left and darting out to pass in the final metres is dangerous.


Thanks for the advice :)
melbear
Member for: 2 years 11 months

Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby happybaboon on Tue 13/Jan/15 1:03am

You also MUST be one and a half door widths or more out from the car, else you'll get killed dead if some numbskull opens a door on you.
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby mbl77 on Tue 13/Jan/15 4:53am

Colin wrote:Move out early when passing parked cars. This signals your intentions to other traffic.

Staying left and darting out to pass in the final metres is dangerous.


+1. And don't be afraid to use a hand signal to make it clearer that you are moving further into the traffic, especially on narrower roads where there may not be space for a car to overtake you safely.
mbl77
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby foremannz on Tue 13/Jan/15 6:36am

+1 for moving out early
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby Kev on Tue 13/Jan/15 7:37am

melbear wrote:I would appreciate any tips for cycling in traffic. Thanks.


Just a general comment about cycling in traffic. Be confident.

As a general rule, cars will leave as much distance between you and their car as you leave between your bicycle and the side of the road.

If you are passing a parked car and think, "I am a road user who has a right to be here, and to be safe", and you leave at least a metre between between yourself and the parked car. Cars who want to pass you will have to wait until they can do so safely.

But if you are timid and think, "I'm afraid to pull out so I'll just try squeezing past this parked car", not only do you risk getting doored if the parked car isn't empty and someone gets out as you go by, but the cars behind you are far more likely to try squeezing past you.
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby wpp1 on Tue 13/Jan/15 8:08am

As a general rule you have to manage traffic around yourself. If it is not safe for a car to pass you, especially on multi-lane roads, then you have to ride out far enough to remove the temptation for the motorist to think that they can just squeeze past, instead of waiting until it is safe to overtake properly.
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Member for: 9 years 0 months

Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby EoinC on Tue 13/Jan/15 8:38am

wpp1 wrote:As a general rule you have to manage traffic around yourself. If it is not safe for a car to pass you, especially on multi-lane roads, then you have to ride out far enough to remove the temptation for the motorist to think that they can just squeeze past, instead of waiting until it is safe to overtake properly.

I'm with this. I ride to the left until I approach an area (roundabout, traffic islands etc) where I don't want any vehicle trying to overtake. Approaching those areas, I make a clear move into the middle of the lane, and a clear move back to the left when exiting. To overtake would require going straight over the top of me, risking damage to paintwork and radiator grill.
EoinC
Member for: 7 years 4 months

Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby happybaboon on Tue 13/Jan/15 8:52am

3rded on the above take-the-lane concept.

Anybody who advises you that it is "safest" to ride to the left should be kicked in the nutsack.
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby scatter on Tue 13/Jan/15 9:05am

EoinC wrote:I'm with this. I ride to the left until I approach an area (roundabout, traffic islands etc) where I don't want any vehicle trying to overtake. Approaching those areas, I make a clear move into the middle of the lane, and a clear move back to the left when exiting. To overtake would require going straight over the top of me, risking damage to paintwork and radiator grill.

:withstupid:
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby Slim on Tue 13/Jan/15 9:31am

and no sudden movements.

If there is a parked car that you are riding up to, don't all of a sudden just swing out into the flow of traffic to pass it. Start moving out long before the parked car so the traffic has time to scrub off some speed and anticipate what you are up to.
Slim
Member for: 14 years 4 months

Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby happybaboon on Tue 13/Jan/15 9:34am

Yeppers.

Same for any location where there is not a "safe" roadside evasive action diving pad - so bridges, areas with cliffs either going up or down, fences too close to the road, and so on - if there isn't room for you to dive out of the way for cover onto a reasonably safe surface (a smooth footpath or a gentle grassy area) then you ride further out into the road.
happybaboon
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby happybaboon on Tue 13/Jan/15 9:35am

Suggestion - could us vorb folk create a newbie "how to survive as a beginner cycle commuter/road rider" guide?

Because what actually keeps you safe is often the complete opposite of what the road code says to do.
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Re: Passing Stationary Cars.

Postby wolffman1 on Tue 13/Jan/15 10:05am

Check for heads in parked cars if you can. If you can see someone in the car, assume they will open the door.
If you see the car pull over to the kerb in front of you, there is a good chance that someone is going to open the door just as you are reaching them.
You can't have too many lights on your bike. Be the rolling Christmas tree, even in daylight. I reckon a strong flashing front light is more valuable than rear
Get to know where shitty bits of road are on your commute/normal routes so you know where you have to pull to pull out into traffic. Signal strongly and do it early.
People's eyes are attracted to movement, so if you end up wearing lots of reflective stuff, it's more useful on moving parts of your body that just on your torso. Socks and legs will be more visible.
Beware the left turner. People in cars have no appreciation for how fast a bike can travel. Once they pass you, their goldfish brains assume you are still at that lamp post so they can turn left in front of you. If I had a dollar for everyone who has done that to me...
Entrances to car parks and fast food joints are notorious for this. Nothing worse than getting knocked off your bike by a family of four heading in for a sugar and processed fat meal.
Statistically, you are more likely to be hit by a turning car at an intersection than from behind by a passing car. That's certainly the case in Australia where I've done some research, and I can't see NZ being too much different, although it does still happen.
Right turning cars across rows of stationary traffic are quite troublesome. If you are travelling down the side of stationary traffic be very cautious entering a gap that someone has left. There's a good chance there's someone on the otherwise of the road hoping to turn into the intersection and they won't see you coming.
If you are commuting, then do what you can to start as early as you can and finish early. There are massive increases in bike accidents that occur during peak hour traffic. Not surprising really, but the earlier the better you can be off the road and hopefully before the school run. I've been the driver on the school run and it's so distracting trying to get kids in tha car and to school it's no wonder they have a bad reputation.
Sounds dumb, but try not to think about dying every time you get on a bike. With time you almost develop a 6th sense about what people are going to do. Cars slowing down or breaking are indicators just as much as the stick that makes the flashy lights go, so watch what drivers are doing even if they aren't indicating.
Eye contact is very powerful. If someone is looking to turn into the road you are on lock eyes on the driver. People feel being looked at and once you make eye contact then they are really aware that you are there and not just stationary street furniture.
I'm massively suss about bike lanes, weird as it sounds. Certainly here in Adelaide, the quiet little back roads with bike lanes involve more intersections and people turning into driveways than riding on the busier arterial routes where people tend to turn at major intersections or are travelling to the end of them. I don't know what it's like where you are though.
Pedestrians are More likely to step in front of you on a bike than when you are in a car for some reason. I guess people are looking for cars to cross the road, not bikes.
Stay out of people's blind spots. Don't assume anyone can use their left hand mirror. If there is a steep section of road where you travel as fast as the traffic, feel free to get into the lane. A flashing front light in people's rear vision mirror gets attention more than a light in the side mirror.
Most of this was part of a safety presentation I out together for a talk at work
Most important thing is Have fun on your bike and ride like you are where you are meant to be.
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