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Old 19th May 2010, 18:59   #1
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Default Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

Just like bad drivers everyone come across very bad pedestrians who can become catalysts for an accident or a series of accidents. Let us key in our experiences on the street so that it would be of help to ensure safe driving either in city streets or in highways.
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Old 19th May 2010, 19:01   #2
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This is already been discussed here -
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Old 14th March 2011, 12:17   #3
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

@mods, I went through the thread referred to by aargee but could not find anything on bad pedestrians there. It's about bike riders on footpaths. So I am posting my experience here:

Yesterday while returning from the Thane - Bhiwandi bypass I entered into the Kalyan road. A little near the toll plaza, I spotted a man crossing over from the opposite road shoulder to the divider in the middle. The divider is about three feet tall. I saw this fello jump over the divider. To my utter surprise, I didn't see him after that at all! I was expecting him to be hurrying across the street as these people normally do. Instead I was staring into darkness.

Alarmed, I switched on my highbeam, and sure enough the guy was sprawled on the road and trying to get up. I guess because of the height of the divider he lost his balance after crossing it. It was quite a safe distance from where I spotted him trying to get up, but if I hadn't switched on the highbeams and spotted him, it could have been a close shave.
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Old 14th March 2011, 12:22   #4
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

I call them Attidoods.
we have lots of them in northern india.
They are usually found on highways,and cross it at their own sweet speed,and after noticing a vehicle approaching them,they continue walking at their own sweet speed,till the vehicle has to brake hard,to avoid running into them.
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Old 14th March 2011, 12:45   #5
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

I think the attitude with most bad pedestrians crossing the road is that if they notice that we( people who are driving ) have seen them, it immediately becomes our responsibility to avoid hitting them and they start crossing the road without any concern and as if they have all the time in the world to cross.
The worst kinds are the ones who are talking on the mobiles and have no idea what is going on around them. They cross the road or walk on the road, without noticing or caring about anything going on on the road.
Then, there are those that we encounter in Bangalore, who take the statement that the road 'belongs to everyone', quite literally. You can spot them playing, talking, arguing, everything on the road. This category also includes people who are building their homes and use the roads to store all the building material and other stuff while blocking half of the road, but that would be the topic for another thread .
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Old 14th March 2011, 12:45   #6
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

@honeybee: Your driving reflex saved the day.

I had a very close call once with an old woman.

She got down from a 8 seater and started crossing the broad road. There was a divider between the two sides of the road but no wall. She was almost at the divider when I approached.

I must have been doing triple digit speeds on my bike. As the road was a slope and I was making full use of the descent. Behind me were a couple of other bikers.

I was in the middle lane so did not honk. But one of my friends behind me honked. The lady was less than 1 feet from the divider when she panicked and started coming back. Unfortunately that brought her right into my path. Now that I think about it, the ol dlady might have had vision problems as well.

I braked and I braked very hard.
When I stopped my tire was about an inch or two from her. Scared the hell out of me and I actually stopped for a couple of minutes by the roadside to cool off.

Learnt a very important lesson that day.
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Old 14th March 2011, 12:49   #7
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

The list is endless - But to me, here are the prime ones.

1. Adults walking along with kids,where kids walk adjacent to the road
2. People talking on mobile phones who are really not "in this world"
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Old 14th March 2011, 12:51   #8
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

I have encountered many a such pedestrians who without any warning dart into your driving lane forcing you to screech to a halt. And then there are the confused lot who are not able to decide whetherthey should cross or not. These are the most difficult one to negotaite. One moment they would want to cross, second moment they hold themeselves back for reasons best known to them. Such morons can be found mainly at the signals.

And then there are the royal ones who cross with a "I dont give a damn" attitude and then after crossing they hurl abuses at the passing vehicles as if they own the road.

The ads of the CEAT tyres can be seen to understand a bad pedestrian.
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Old 14th March 2011, 12:55   #9
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

Spotting bad pedestrians is easy. From afar while crossing they will give two hoots about which vehicle is approaching from either side.
Some pedestrians will know about approaching vehicles and still act heroically and expect the traffic to brake for them. I get irritated at these people. But they are not to blame fully. They seldom get a chance to cross over.
Once a lady on NH4 at Belgaum crossed carelessly as if she was taking a stroll in a park and I was doing good speeds. I did adjust my speed but also gave her a mouthful to make her understand that others wouldn't have corrected their speeds for her. And to some extent that is true.
I was driving to HYD from BLR and I saw a pedestiran on the road lying in a pool of blood (people there told me).
I am not sure things willl improve even if we have 'Pedestrian's right of way' rule in India also.
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Old 14th March 2011, 13:18   #10
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

I wouldn't have a concern if they held their course and kept walking, or stayed where they were. It's the indecisive ones who give me a scare. They will lose their cool, try to dodge the oncoming car by jumping around and in the whole confusion they will likely be hit by some other vehicle. The best strategy is to try and spot them early and then slow down and stop.

@bblost: it's actually not the driving reflexes, but something I have developed over the years (I don't know if consciously or subconsciously). I have posted it elsewhere too. Whenever I am driving I try to memorize the vehicles around me and try to foretell how a particular driver / rider will behave in the next few instants. So if a biker with a blue helmet is behind me on my left, I keep watching out for him through all my mirrors. I try to briefly work out if he is aggressive or relaxed, if he will try to overtake me/others and if yes, how, when, where and from which side. If I find something amiss, for e.g. the biker suddenly disappears from my rear view, something goes off inside my brain and I become even more alert. I avoid changing lanes and stick to a steady speed. Almost always I have found that the biker has suddenly reappeared nearby in my blind spots. Has saved me a few nasty surprises. But it also means that whenever I am exercising this habit, I am very highly strung and tense and focussed. Often my poor wife gets an earful as she tries to broach some conversation without realizing the strain I am under.

The same reflex or intuition took over last night when I didn't see the man cross over my side of the street and I switched on the high beams instinctively.

Not to justify the pedestrians, but before I took to the car as my major mode of transport, I recall that I used to cross streets the same way these pedestrians do, although I was and am much more careful. And whatever be the rules you really don't want to hit a pedestrian, even if he is in the wrong. I could bring myself to get out of the car and probably slap someone, but never would dare hit him or even brush him with a vehicle. That's nasty. So even though I am irritated, I usually try and slow down whenever possible, even if it means an increased risk of getting rear ended.

Last edited by honeybee : 14th March 2011 at 13:29.
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Old 14th March 2011, 14:04   #11
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

Had a close shave this morning near Pallavaram bus stand on the GST Road. Traffic was restricted to two lanes due to buses parked on the left lane and every one stopped for a pedestrian crossing signal. A short while later all vehicles started to move briskly and so did I. Then to my horror I saw a Fiesta immediately ahead of me stop dead in it's tracks, and despite my best efforts could not avoid my bike hitting him in the rear bumper and boot. My wife riding side saddle in the pillion landed on her feet due to the hard braking, ran a few steps and stopped herself by holding on to the Fiesta. I saw the driver looking at me in the ORVM, waved my hand in apology and braced for him to come out and give me a mouthful.

There were a few scratches on the right side of his boot and bumper. My fairing was cracked, number plate bent and my left indicator was hanging from it's wire. Fortunately we had not fallen and there was no vehicle behind us. Then to my utter surprise I saw him waving and indicating me to go ahead!

When I passed him on his left I saw he had bigger things to occupy his mind. He had rear ended an Indica, which in turn had hit another car stopped an inch before the pedestrian crossing. He had perhaps not even realized I had hit him, and mistook my wave as a signal to move on.

Some moron pedestrian had darted across after the vehicles had started to move, and this was the result. He had gone away, blissfully ignorant of the mayhem he caused. But strictly speaking he alone should not be cursed - we all were culprits of not giving enough gap for the vehicle ahead. And this had to happen to me after 25 years on the saddle.
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Old 14th March 2011, 15:11   #12
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

My 2 cents

In some contries, if you driving in street roads (not in highways) the thumb rule is "pedestrians first" . I think we have to be a little more kind to pedestrians, especially old people walking by side (may be they cant hear even if you honk), or people walking with kids . We should consider the fact, roughly 5% of we indians have the privilege of owning a car but others have to walk to access public transport or have to wait by the side of the road.Most of our roads do not have properly marked pedestrian crossings or not have proper signals for crossings
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Old 14th March 2011, 16:36   #13
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

The biggest fault with Chennai pedestrians is, they just don't understand that a platform is for pedestrians to walk. Most of them, even educated upper class walk on the roadsides, adjacent to the platform. They think the corporation has built the platforms to accomodate vendors, park vehicles, etc.

Once when a talk show was being aired on a popular FM channel on platform vendors, majority of the callers were OK with platforms being hijacked by these vendors, etc. They found it convenient because they can buy all their daily stuff without walking or travelling more distances.
The biggest shock was when the RJ of the show( the most popular one in Chennai, who is also a playback singer) made fun of a guy, who spoke about how platforms should be used only by pedestrians.

Last edited by Daewood : 14th March 2011 at 16:37.
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Old 14th March 2011, 17:36   #14
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

ever wonder why Bangalore is called the Garden City? well, here's my theory - people walk on the roads as if they're walking in Lal Bagh or Cubbon Park, that's why!! they expect the vehicles to magically stop or avoid hitting them! even though there is a fast approaching vehicle, they would calmly and slowly walk across!!

people don't give a damn about the Walk and Don't Walk signs at the traffic signals! most of them i've seen start crossing the road when the the traffic starts moving leading to honking and increased blood pressure levels!
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Old 14th March 2011, 20:01   #15
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Default Re: Bad Pedestrians - How do you spot them

The other day I noticed a well dressed guy with a laptop hung to his shoulder and talking on his mobile and walking on the road during the peak hour near KR Puram railway stn, he was almost in the middle of the road, and when a guy in chevy optra honked at him to move out, he started shouting at the car guy asking wht's wrong with you and why are you honking like a mad person...I was like
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