Cycling in Sydney Australia
Not a good idea according to one engineer and a former frequenter of this site:
"Possibly the worst cycling safety invention I've seen. No wonder it has support of councils and advocates.
validates poor driving
attributes responsibility to victims
It could also lead to motorists using a defence similar to SMIDSY in other locations: "I wasn't expecting a cyclist because there was no flashing warning sign."
Otherwise, great idea. Let's have them on every road, every kilometre. Wouldn't cost much...
You just know the first thing the lawyers would jump on if a cyclist was hit, would be the cyclist didn't hit the button or the sign just wasn't flashing.
Cynical I know.
If it's really too hard for drivers to pay attention to their environment and drive to conditions they should have their licenses removed. Surgically if required
At a meeting with Newcastle RMS a few years ago, they were planning on putting something like this on the approaches to the Tarro bridge where Neil Smith was killed when a 4WD hit him and threw him over the embankment onto the rail corridor below. They were looking at having a sensor in the road for cyclists to ride over so that the lights would be activated for a time that would be adequate to get them through the dangerous bit. I know that there's been some work done there to lessen the danger, but I'm not sure whether the flashing lights were installed. It's not a part of the local area that I chose to ride these days - too many trucks and bogans trying to outdo one another.
The results of the ensuing trial are here.
The push button option was discussed and it was decided that it would be a PIA. So I think that the general consensus was that cyclists would find it easier to ride over a sensor in a marked location on the LHS extremity of the road shoulder indicated with arrows, etc, to trigger the lights.
I partially agree...
Though it is an easy fix and it can possibly be effective in preventing death or injury.
The other issues you mention are a tougher challenge and will take more time to fix.
I have rear view mirrors on all of my bikes because I think that it's equally as important to know what's happening behind you as well as in front. I constantly scan it as well as the area ahead. While touring, I try to travel on secondary roads wherever possible, but sometimes it's highways, and road shoulders can range from crap, to non-existant, to 2-3m of good surface. I've found that, depending on wind direction, from the first time that you first hear a car coming from behind, you have about 5-10 seconds to decide what you're going to do, and assess what they are likely to do. The mirror has helped me to decide whether it's best to head for the hills, or maintain the line because the driver has already started to move over to the other side of the road to give me plenty of clearance.
I think that signage is a bit of a help as well as a cop-out, but you have to rely on your own senses and assume that everyone behind a wheel is likely to kill you, then take whatever action you deem appropriate for self preservation!
I met Mark several times, I'm sure he knows what he's doing, it will be in context to the environment