From: Matt B on
On 31/07/2010 16:09, Phil W Lee wrote:
> "Brimstone"<brimstone(a)hotmail.com> considered Sat, 31 Jul 2010
> 11:01:48 +0100 the perfect time to write:
>
>>
>> "Derek C"<del.copeland(a)tiscali.co.uk> wrote in message
>> news:83ae43f9-8c88-45cf-88d4-4905ae176512(a)f33g2000yqe.googlegroups.com...
>>> On Jul 31, 10:28 am, Ian Jackson
>>> <ianREMOVETHISjack...(a)g3ohx.demon.co.uk> wrote:
>>>> In message<8bi4rrFhb...(a)mid.individual.net>, Matt B
>>>> <matt.bou...(a)nospam.london.com> writes
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>> On 31/07/2010 09:00, Derek C wrote:
>>>>>> On Jul 31, 8:47 am, Matt B<matt.bou...(a)nospam.london.com> wrote:
>>>>>>> On 31/07/2010 08:39, Derek C wrote:
>>>>
>>>>>>> Do you believe that most sets of traffic lights give more benefit
>>>>>>> than
>>>>>>> dis-benefit for most of the time? Would our access roads and streets
>>>>>>> be
>>>>>>> safer, less congested and polluted and more enjoyable places without
>>>>>>> them?
>>>>
>>>>>> It seems to me that some sets of traffic lights are deliberately
>>>>>> designed to slow up motorised traffic as much as possible, especially
>>>>>> in motorist hating Labour controlled boroughs.Some lights change so
>>>>>> quickly that only a few vehicles at a time can get through, while
>>>>>> others keep you waiting at the red light for ages, long after all the
>>>>>> traffic going in the other direction has got through the junction.
>>>>
>>>>> The dead phase of all-red is the real congestion and pollution creator.
>>>>
>>>> Except for those where the dead phase is measured in microseconds.
>>>
>>> Generally the dead all-red phase is about 2 seconds.
>
> Officially it's called the inter-green phase.
> They keep having to extend it because of all the RLJing cars.
>>>
>>>>>> However most traffic lights are reasonably sensible.
>>>>
>>>>> At all times? Could they be switched off at, say, night?
>>>
>>> There are a number of 'part time' traffic lights in my area that are
>>> switched off outside the rush hours
>>>
>>>> Don't they do this, on the Continent? Crossroads show flashing amber for
>>>> all directions, and then it's the usual continental 'priorité à droite'.
>>>>
>>>>>> If you didn't
>>>>>> have traffic lights, you might find it difficult to enter a main road
>>>>>> from a minor one with give way signs at busy times of day.
>>>>
>>>>> What if you didn't have give-way limes or signs either, and there was
>>>>> no defined priority - just an imaginatively cobbled or garishly painted
>>>>> free-for-all zone in the middle? This is the case when traffic lights
>>>>> break down (except for the cobbled or painted bit!), and in such
>>>>> circumstances the junctions generally flow more efficiently.
>>>>
>>>> Apart from the bit about 'no defined priority', you are well on the way
>>>> to inventing the (mini) roundabout!
>>>
>>> Yuk! 'After you'. 'No after you'. Crunch!
>>>
>>>>> What about the danger of RLJers (deliberate or erroneous) - that risk
>>>>> would disappear if there was no red (and no green) light?
>>>
>>> Probably fewer traffic offences, but more collisions.
>>>
>> In places where this has been implemented the traffic flows better and with
>> fewer collisions because people are forced to look and take notice of what's
>> going on around them.
>>
> I'm fairly sure that what happens when lights fail is not a good
> indication of what happens when they are removed.
> It is dealing with the unfamiliar that makes drivers cautious, so it
> doesn't last.

The point is though that with no lights, and peds, cyclists, cars, etc.
randomly interacting it /never/ becomes predictable or routine.
Alertness is required each and every time - you never know who or what
is going to cross your path - and you /never/ have any priority over them.

--
Matt B
From: Brimstone on

"Phil W Lee" <phil(a)lee-family.me.uk> wrote in message
news:2te8561q3b1aj6cornsc5b8bah1pft8iic(a)4ax.com...

> I'm fairly sure that what happens when lights fail is not a good
> indication of what happens when they are removed.
> It is dealing with the unfamiliar that makes drivers cautious, so it
> doesn't last.

It has in those towns which have implemented it, so we're told anyway.


From: Mortimer on
"Matt B" <matt.bourke(a)nospam.london.com> wrote in message
news:8bisskFum2U1(a)mid.individual.net...
> On 31/07/2010 16:09, Phil W Lee wrote:
> The point is though that with no lights, and peds, cyclists, cars, etc.
> randomly interacting it /never/ becomes predictable or routine. Alertness
> is required each and every time - you never know who or what is going to
> cross your path - and you /never/ have any priority over them.

Therefore it becomes a free-for all: it increases the risk of collision
which means that either the number of collisions increases or else everyone
has to slow right down to reduce the chance of collision to acceptible
level. It also relies on much greater signalling so everyone knows who is
going to go next, to avoid everyone thinking "so *can* I go or can't I?".
What happens if two road users each are convinced that it is now safe for
them to go? Either they collide or else they each realise that it is not
safe and they back off, and then have to decide all over again who will go
first.

When I'm driving I want to know that I can either go through a junction at
normal speed if the lights are in my favour or else I will have to stop if
they are not. Having to slow down at *every* junction, rather than only
those where the lights are against me, is a very retrograde step. I'm not
saying that if the lights are in your favour you should stop looking for the
nutter who has gone through a red light into you path, but this should be
the unlikely exception rather than being a near-certainty.

From: Mortimer on
"Brimstone" <brimstone(a)hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:qLadnYoBYMr13MnRnZ2dnUVZ8tKdnZ2d(a)bt.com...
>
> "Phil W Lee" <phil(a)lee-family.me.uk> wrote in message
> news:2te8561q3b1aj6cornsc5b8bah1pft8iic(a)4ax.com...
>
>> I'm fairly sure that what happens when lights fail is not a good
>> indication of what happens when they are removed.
>> It is dealing with the unfamiliar that makes drivers cautious, so it
>> doesn't last.
>
> It has in those towns which have implemented it, so we're told anyway.

If when you get rid of lights you replace them with either a roundabout or a
major road / minor road junction (ie crossroads sign in one direction, give
way / stop signs in the other direction) that's fine. If you dispense with
the rules of priority, that's a horrendous situation because it leads to
doubt, indecision and barging.

I repeast what I said earlier: there should NEVER be a situation when
driving where more than one person has right of way at the same time.
Everyone should know who is defined to have priority and anyone who disobeys
this (whether driver, cyclist or pedestrian) should be penalised heavily.
Anyone who disobeys the rules of priority and forces someone else to brake
hard to avoid a collision, either wilfully or carelessly, has no place on
the road.

From: Mortimer on
"Brimstone" <brimstone(a)hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:qLadnYoBYMr13MnRnZ2dnUVZ8tKdnZ2d(a)bt.com...
>
> "Phil W Lee" <phil(a)lee-family.me.uk> wrote in message
> news:2te8561q3b1aj6cornsc5b8bah1pft8iic(a)4ax.com...
>
>> I'm fairly sure that what happens when lights fail is not a good
>> indication of what happens when they are removed.
>> It is dealing with the unfamiliar that makes drivers cautious, so it
>> doesn't last.
>
> It has in those towns which have implemented it, so we're told anyway.

If when you get rid of lights you replace them with either a roundabout or a
major road / minor road junction (ie crossroads sign in one direction, give
way / stop signs in the other direction) that's fine. If you dispense with
the rules of priority, that's a horrendous situation because it leads to
doubt, indecision and barging.