How to avoid SMIDSY

gaz

Cycle Camera TV
Location
South Croydon
This? you didn't link to anything so i can only presume you're talking about the video with the motorcyclist that talks about the same topic, i recall the title being the same. Which would link the two.

A good video but not 100% sure it's applicable to a cyclist cycling on the edge of the road.
I think it's better to be aware that it might happen and slow down, rather than taking action to try and make a driver aware, if they are not looking they won't see you if you weave.
It may not be correct for us to give way to people in this situation but sometimes it's best to let someone go.
 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
Best thing is to read the road, see where the traffic is, and anticipate folk not looking. There are instances when you've gone past the point of no return and someone then does something silly... i.e. no prior reactions like wheel turning etc....

The 'wiggle' works better at night approaching junctions for cyclists though as your lights will flash across the other 'road users' sight.
 

dondare

Über Member
Location
London
I've never seen a m-cyclist weaving and I'd think that he was larking about if I did.
I wouldn't do it myself on my (non-m)-bike.
 

yello

Legendary Member
Location
France
On the motorbike, I think it was called 'showing'. And, yes, I do it on my bike - though not exaggerated weaving about. Basically, it's just moving out of the single line and across the SMIDSY candidate's field of vision.

For example, and I'm not sure of the science here, I believe if you approach a junction in a straight line, as a cyclist might, that it is possible for someone sat at that junction to not see you. They might be looking your direction but your presence simply does not register. It's not them being inattentive, or whatever. Their eyes physically see you but quite literally their brain filters you out. Dunno why. But by breaking away from that line, say moving secondary to primary, your crossing their field of vision and their brain clocks you. That's why eye contact is important. It lets you know that you've been clocked. Still no guarantee that they won't pull out though! But moving to primary also gives you more time to react if they do pull out, so it's a doubley wise thing to do.
 

dondare

Über Member
Location
London
If I'm approaching a junction and someone's waiting to pull out then I move further out myself. If they edge forward then I go right over to the centre line. They see me.
 
yello said:
On the motorbike, I think it was called 'showing'. And, yes, I do it on my bike - though not exaggerated weaving about. Basically, it's just moving out of the single line and across the SMIDSY candidate's field of vision.

For example, and I'm not sure of the science here, I believe if you approach a junction in a straight line, as a cyclist might, that it is possible for someone sat at that junction to not see you. They might be looking your direction but your presence simply does not register. It's not them being inattentive, or whatever. Their eyes physically see you but quite literally their brain filters you out. Dunno why. But by breaking away from that line, say moving secondary to primary, your crossing their field of vision and their brain clocks you. That's why eye contact is important. It lets you know that you've been clocked. Still no guarantee that they won't pull out though! But moving to primary also gives you more time to react if they do pull out, so it's a doubley wise thing to do.
I think that sums up how I do it too.:biggrin:
 

vernon

Harder than Ronnie Pickering
Location
Meanwood, Leeds
yello said:
For example, and I'm not sure of the science here, I believe if you approach a junction in a straight line, as a cyclist might, that it is possible for someone sat at that junction to not see you. They might be looking your direction but your presence simply does not register. It's not them being inattentive, or whatever. Their eyes physically see you but quite literally their brain filters you out. Dunno why.
It was covered in an issue of Bike Magazine. Basically an object travelling down the central cone of an observer's vision does not have a large rate of change of size and does not register as a moving body if I recall correctly.

Had a quick google and found the reference
 

Ashtrayhead

Über Member
Location
Belvedere, Kent.
Trumpettom001 said:
Just came across this - the bit about weaving at the end is a novel idea - anyone ever done this on a bicycle?

Also - must point out that to stop being SMIDSY'd - BE VISIBLE IN THE FIRST PLACE!!! - Wearing black is just silly.

Thoughts?

View: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqQBubilSXU

There's plenty of discussion about this topic too! My own take on it is that by wearing all black you'll be silhoutted and less likely to blend in to a busy background, especially during the day.
 

GrasB

Veteran
Location
Nr Cambridge
Ashtrayhead said:
There's plenty of discussion about this topic too! My own take on it is that by wearing all black you'll be silhoutted and less likely to blend in to a busy background, especially during the day.
+1 It's more about contrast than the colour.

I tend to wear bright colours in the winter as in low light they tend to stand out more against a generally darker background. In summer I tend to go for large blocks of darker colours with some brighter colours to help give an outline to my body shape. White, yellow or red are good colours. Bright green is bad & tends to make you merge in with road side vegetation.

I saw someone in almost full yellow gear yesterday, against the bright background of a building I noticed the black of their helmet, bar tape & the middle section of their shorts moving before the yellow of their clothes. Which is a case in point, the yellow helped make the black of the 'bars & shorts stand out more by giving a defined bright boarder.
 
How do you avoid a SMIDSY if they just aren't looking?

You may look good in Hi-Viz but if they are faffing with their mobile phone - Sat Nav then whatever you wear dont make a 5h1t load of difference.Perhaps a machine gun to shoot the half wits would be better.
 

summerdays

Cycling in the sun
Location
Bristol
hackbike 666 said:
How do you avoid a SMIDSY if they just aren't looking?
You also have to look yourself and try and see if they have looked at you. If they don't look your direction or appear to look beyond you then slow right down and be prepared.
 

yello

Legendary Member
Location
France
hackbike 666 said:
How do you avoid a SMIDSY if they just aren't looking?
That's the eye contact bit, as summerdays suggests.

I have actually stopped because I couldn't see where the driver was looking... because of tinted glass. I felt really stupid doing it but I simply could not be sure they'd seen me. It was early am (summer, so light), little or no traffic around as I approached the junction of a rat run. No other vehicles on my bit of road. This car came flying up to the junction to my left (that always sets the spidey senses jangling!), slowed and... I had no idea whether they were going to wait or just carry on as I couldn't see the driver. So I stopped in the street and looked at the car. It speed off again. I still have no idea whether they'd seen me or not.

Thanks for the vernon. Not sure if I'm reading it right but...

If you stay to the left of your lane, you will diverge from his line of sight, making yourself more noticeable. But if you're veering right (say, moving from the left to the right lane) you'll be moving along the crossing driver's line of sight, helping to hide your motion against the background.
seems to contradict what they say in other parts of the article! I think I know what they're saying (the driver's line of sight will not be directly down the road, more angled, so you staying straight crosses this line) but 'staying left' approaching a junction is not a good idea imho.

I can see that moving right to left might mean you move directly down the driver's line of sight but left to right should, theoretically at least, exaggerate the crossing movement, it being more of a right angled move, more so than staying left at any rate.
 
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