Brake lights and stopping at junctions

Discussion in 'Gen 4 Prius Main Forum' started by Ampletum, Aug 27, 2018.

  1. alanclarkeau

    alanclarkeau Senior Member

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    Particularly if you're listening to, say, something gentle and serene like Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony and the beat of the indicator is just out of sync - really does your brain in.
     
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  2. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

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    My opinion is once you start the engine of your vehicle...you are driving..even if you are sitting still.
    And with driving? Safety is supported by communicating your intent, whether that is to be stopped, or to turn. Safety is also supported by being able to take action, as quickly as possible.

    I don't know how much clearer it could be made. The selection is labeled "P" and that P stands for PARK. It's not labeled "TS" for temporary stop, or "MB" for momentary braking...the selection is called PARK...so I pretty much ONLY use it...when PARKING.

    When I approach a traffic stop, I brake. Using the regular foot pedal. Once slowed and stopped, I keep it depressed until I want or have to move.
    Yes this action activates the brake lights.....communicating to others that I'm slowing and stopping. That's brake lights doing their job.
    Do the brake lights annoy those behind me?
    Well?
    Bright Lights, Big City...I've never been that annoyed by brake lights. Given all the lights, glare that surround the usual suburban driver coming from everything from traffic lights to illuminated golden arches, are brake lights really a consistent problem?
    It's never really registered with me as anything but the cost of A. Having Eyesight, and B. Driving out in the world...especially at night.

    I have a different feeling about some adapted HID headlights, that sometimes can be blinding as well as miss-aligned. But that's oncoming moving traffic, and I believe their are laws regarding levels of brightness and NOT blinding oncoming vehicles.
    But never have I really ever been put off by brake lights or turn signals.
     
  3. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    If I am turning, I signal, it is really very simple.
    If I am stopped, I am on the brake.

    Unless it is REALLY long like road construction. If I am the last car in road construction I have my 4 way flashers on. I want other drivers to know I am stopped in the middle of the lane.
     
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  4. Since2002

    Since2002 Senior Lurker

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    Not sure that I am 100% following but if I understand correctly you are referring to a manual transmission, since with an automatic transmission there is no choice but to step on the brake pedal to slow down, other than slight coasting regen in hybrids and electrics. Although some electrics with paddles apparently have strong regen, but I think the brake lights come on at some point. And yes stepping on the brake pedal activates the brake lights like it should and communicates to others, unlike a manual where some people downshift and only brake at the very end.
    When you are stopped in the middle of a line of cars at a red light, who exactly are you communicating to? If you want to keep your blinker going and keep your foot on the brake even when it's not necessary that's fine, but it sounds like you are implying that anyone who doesn't is not being safe.

    As for the idea that because of its name the parking brake should only be used for parking, as if the name forbids any other type of usage, if we follow that reasoning then we should only use the accelerator pedal for accelerating not for cruising, and we should only use the brake pedal for braking, not to hold the car stationary.
     
    #64 Since2002, Dec 17, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018
  5. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    By George, I think he's got it!
     
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  6. Since2002

    Since2002 Senior Lurker

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    Please explain
     
  7. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    I live in a state where no one raised here signals. What do you call a car with its turn signals on? Out of state.
    It is maddening that the defective part of the car is the driver. If you are turning, signal, if you are stopping or stopped, be on the brake. It is really that simple. You CAN let your fellow drivers know what you are doing and have planned. "Has he fallen asleep at the wheel or is he turning left? The world will never know."

    I go the extra mile and use my emergency flashers if I am stopped in the lane of traffic when not at a light (road construction, train crossing, school bus letting out students) but I admit this is optional.

    'A turn signal must be given whenever a turn is made to the right or the left. You must give a continuous turn signal for an adequate distance to alert other drivers before turning.'

    page 24 http://www.eregulations.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/14GADM-Final.pdf

    Continuously for a certain distance makes turning them off in the left turn lane illegal in Georgia.

    Georgia does not require brake lights in the driver's manual. Odd. It would be on page 25.
     
  8. alanclarkeau

    alanclarkeau Senior Member

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    I was thinking about a particular light when I commented earlier - where it can be 3 or 4 light changes before you get a Right Arrow (which is your LEFT) to let you through - like 3-5 cars at a time, particularly if they're not swift off the mark. And it's got a RedLight Camera which makes it worse. I just drove past it, fortunately not wanting to turn, but they were lined up back to the previous intersection. I've sat there for 10 mins waiting.
     
  9. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    I have no idea what the law is in Oz. I am confident that in the US, you would be required to keep the turn signal on within a certain distance of the turn, but with right is left, North is South, up is down, etc. I am no expert for your conditions.
     
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  10. The Electric Me

    The Electric Me Go Speed Go!

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    You're not.

    You are making your intentions clear, to EVERY CAR around and behind you that can see your signals and brake lights. There is a reason cars come with brake lights and signals. It's to communicate your actions to others around you.

    I was talking about "P" or "Park" on the shift selector knob. Which I never shift into unless I'm parking. Not talking about using the parking brake.
    But for that matter?
    I pretty much do use the "Emergency Brake" or "Parking Brake" for either parking or emergencies.
     
  11. Since2002

    Since2002 Senior Lurker

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    Both are good arguments for the general subject of the importance of signalling. Your arguments are perfect for a discussion about people who don't signal when they change lanes or make turns.

    As far as signalling a turn, there are two very distinct situations - normal traffic lanes that you can either turn or go straight, and dedicated turn lanes. We are discussing the latter, not the former.

    Even with dedicated turn lanes it's important to signal when approaching the turn lane so that people will know that you will be moving into it. And to keep signalling as long as you are the last car in the lane so that approaching cars will know that you are stopped in a turn lane. And later when the turn is eventually performed the turn signal should be on, for sure if it is not a protected turn (green arrow).

    For a protected turn, no other cars should be moving at that time except those that are turning, and anyway by the time your car becomes visible you will already be turning (unless you are the lead car), so signalling doesn't really seem necessary, but I'm not going to argue that one, although legally I think only an overzealous cop would give someone a ticket for not signaling during a protected turn. But needed or not it's probably best to signal even while making a protected turn since you are in motion.

    All well and good, but basically preaching to the choir because NO ONE on here has said anything to indicate that they don't think it is important to communicate to other drivers via signalling. It almost feels like a courtroom in here, "But you just admitted that you sometimes had negative thoughts about your brother-in-law. Go ahead and admit that you murdered him. Don't you know that murder is a crime? I'm now going to give you a lecture on why murder is wrong".

    Now back to the very specific, isolated situation that we are talking about at this moment:

    You are in a dedicated left turn lane (U.S) meaning that everyone in that lane will be turning left. As you approach the turn lane you activate your left signal well in advance to indicate to other drivers that you will be moving into the turn lane. You leave the blinker on as you pull into the turn lane, and keep it on after coming to a stop. You notice that you are several cars back from the lead car. A moment later a car pulls into the turn lane behind you and stops immediately behind you, soon followed by several other cars.

    Up until now no disagreement. But at this point some of us do something which for some reason is seen as indicating contempt for the law and disregard for life and property. In this specific situation, and only in this specific situation, we sometimes turn off our blinkers while we are waiting. The only two cars that can see your left turn signal at this point is the car in front of you (maybe they can see it) and the car in back of you. Both of them obviously know that you are turning left because you are in the turn lane with them. I guess if you also have blinkers on your mirrors other people in the turn lane behind you can see it, but again they already can see that you are in the turn lane with them so they already know you are turning left.

    Cars on the other side of the intersection (oncoming traffic) cannot see your blinker because it is blocked by the cars in front of you. Cars on the cross-street to your right cannot see your left blinker. Cars on the cross-street to your left could in theory see your left blinker, but they will be moving through the intersection at this time, while you are stopped, thus unaffected. And anyway by the time your turn lane gets a green light the cross traffic will be stopped.

    So some of us, knowing that we will be stopped for a minute or more in this situation, and knowing that the blinker is not needed at that moment to communicate anything to anyone, we admit to sometimes turning off the blinker while waiting.

    Guilty as charged. I throw myself onto the mercy of the court.

    The distinction is between the letter and the spirit of the law. The spirit of the law is that drivers who will be affected by your actions need to be effectively communicated to as they would otherwise not be able to anticipate your change in direction. Anyone who approaches an intersection to make a turn and doesn't signal, or only signals for a second then stops signalling, or only signals at the last second, are acting unsafe and clearly violating the law that you quoted.

    But I cannot imagine that a cop will pull someone over and give them a ticket because they were sitting stopped in the middle of a left turn lane with cars in front of them and behind them, but without their blinkers continuously operating while they sat there. Well maybe Barney Fife would, but I think Andy would probably overrule him.

    The brake light discussion is identical in my opinion. Only the car stopped immediately behind you can see your brake light, and he obviously already knows that you are stopped.

    I was too, I'm not sure why I said parking brake. But again, just because it is named "Park" doesn't mean that you aren't allowed to use it while stopped in other situations. If I am stopped several cars back and there is a car stopped behind me, I sometimes put it in park while waiting. Some have argued that this will wear out the parking pawl. After twelve years my parking pawl is doing fine. I think it can handle it.
     
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  12. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    i usually signal when in a turn lane, but sometimes wonder if it is necessary or appropriate.

    been 50 years since my driving test
     
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  13. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    My take: there may be a few instances where signalling is overkill. So what.
     
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  14. Since2002

    Since2002 Senior Lurker

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    Agreed, and I don't think I have seen any comments that criticize anyone for sitting in a left turn lane with their blinkers on, as it certainly doesn't hurt anything or anyone. The OP did make an interesting comment about being bothered by a brake light in their face. However they are from U.K. where apparently viewpoints like mine seem to be more accepted related to situations where you are stopped in between cars. But I'm not going to criticize anyone for keeping their foot on the brake even if it's not necessary and it's blinding me. It's their right and they should do what feels safest to them, and I would say the same with blinkers while stopped in the middle of a dedicated turn lane.
     
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  15. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    There's a lot of similar conventions, that are largely (and sadly) ignored these days. Coming to a full stop at the broad white line, looking both ways, at stop signs and red lights for example.

    Around here, right turners approaching a red light or stop sign pretty much always roll it. Keeps the through traffic and pedestrians on their toes...
     
  16. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    I do not care if you are in a left only lane going straight, turning right from the left lane or even going left as you should. I want to know, not guess. If you tell people your intentions, your sheet metal stays shiny longer.
     
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  17. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    And hey: if you're the sole car there, and some pedestrians trying to figure out your intentions, still use your signals, they're not mind readers. In short: just always signal.

    Puts me in mind of an incident many years ago:

    The bus I was on was detoured by a bomb scare in Port Moody, so took off on a scenic route. The driver announced that he was open for requests, could go any route practical, and would stop wherever requested.

    One passenger walked up to the front, chatted with him for a bit, and then mentioned where he'd like to get off. As the bus rolled up to his requested stop, he had an epiphany, reached over rang the bell. :ROFLMAO:
     
  18. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    Huh??? As I read it, this is exactly what revived this dormant thread yesterday. This latest spate of responses does not reach back to the OP:
     
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  19. Since2002

    Since2002 Senior Lurker

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    Agreed, as I think I stated pretty clearly in the two paragraphs following the one that you are quoting.
     
  20. Since2002

    Since2002 Senior Lurker

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    I forgot about that one, I don't agree with their comment. I just assume that the person in front of me has their signal on either because they feel it is safer, or they assume it's the law, or they aren't really thinking about it and they are just doing what everyone else is doing. I'm okay with all but the last one, which I think needs some improvement on their part. I think it's important to actually think about what is going on and how it relates to safety not just follow what everyone else is doing.
     
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