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[SA] Buses pulling out.

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' started by CamHornet, Dec 9, 2008.

  1. I hate bus drivers.

    I'm not sure if it's a nation wide policy, but in SA, drivers are supposed to give way to buses leaving their bus-bay. However, they're also supposed to give three seconds of indication prior to pulling out on you.

    I had a business ride into town this morning on my bike. The bus up ahead was a double with one of those flexible rubber-hinges in the middle that look like an oversized piano accordion. As I was passing one of these behemoths, he had his left indicator on whilst he was picking up passengers. As it was one of those long buses, he had it kinked in the middle to try and fit into the bay, so half of both ends were straddling half the lane. There was a 4WD turning right just behind him, so I weaved around the left of that and then curved around the right of the bus.

    Anyway, half way past he decides to pull out. Nothing unexpected there, the majority of people on this forum experience this on a daily basis. A quick twist of the wrist and swerve into the right wheel track puts me out of harm's way.

    The next part is slightly annoying because of his attitude. Waiting at the next set of lights, he pulls up next to me, shakes his head and taps his forehead, sort-of indicating that I'm an idiot. Hey, I'm the first to apologise if I'm wrong, but I don't really have time for people who don't know the road rules.

    Any one have a similar occurrence?

    An example would be roundabouts. The rule is to give way to vehicles already on the roundabout, not the rhetoric parental advice of "give way to the right." I get really annoyed when I'm sitting behind someone on a roundabout, who won't budge because they see a car 50 metres away to the right.

    Is it just me? Because I really think I'm taking crazy pills!
  2. So, you're in the right hand lane (I assume it's a 2 lane road). You come from behind a 4WD (I assume it's a proper 4WD), dart into the left hand lane (which was partially blocked by the bus) and then flip into the right hand lane to avoid the bus which has now pulled into your lane.

    Or, is it a single lane, the 4WD was turning right and you nipped up the inside of the 4WD, then to the outside of the bus?

    From the bus drivers perspective, the 4WD was behind him and probably obscuring his rearward view. Not only that, but the 4WD was blocking traffic. He would have glanced, saw the 4WD, briefly indicated and pulled out, probably thinking 'great, no need to wait for some arsehole car driver to let me into the traffic flow'. And then you're there.
  3. It was a single lane, with the bike lane to the left.

    I think he didn't see me because of two factors...

    1. The bus was kinked in the middle, so his mirrors were directed straight into the back half of the bus. It's a problem for a big bus in a small bay.

    2. I was obscured by a 4WD, so he may have assumed that no-one could possibly be there.

    As I said, I'm not incredibly worried that he pulled out. It happens when they "think" that no-one's there and it's always inattention or lack of judgment. My problem is that the 3 second time between indicating and pulling out was simply not there. If he had put his indicators on three seconds beforehand, I would have slowed down and let him through, as per the law.

    Instead, I get glared at like I'm a tosser with a death wish. Oh well. :roll:
  4. But in his defence, he looks, doesn't see you. Pulls out and then he sees you to his right, apparently swerving around his bus. From his perspective, you're the one who's the idiot.

    And as for the 3s rule, not sure about that. We know that if he waited for 3s and then a bunch of cars pull past, he won't get out into the traffic flow.
  5. Adelaide bus drivers ,adelaide cage drivers there all ferrel on the roads there.When i go there to see family i cant wait to get out of there.the ones that do use indicators sometimes take longer to turn the corner than they had there indicators on for :roll:
  6. I acknowledge that I can't truly know his perspective, but I maintain that he would have seen me (and I would have let him through) if he had indicated with appropriate time to pull out.

    Then it must be a SA-specific rule. You're supposed to give way to buses pulling out of bus bays, but it's only possible to do so if they both indicate and give you three seconds to know that they're going to pull out!
  7. All I am saying is that it is likely that the bus driver was only aware of you as you passed to the right of his bus. He may not have (genuinely) seen you and his first impression was of a bike swerving around his bus in (what he may consider to be) a dangerous manner.

    Part of improving is owning up to when you could have done something better. Last year I almost got taken out by a car driver who went for a gap that I had just darted into. I didn't pay him out as in reality, it was an accident ready for the making. I was just fortunate that I wasn't going quick enough to land on my arse. Technically it was his fault, but I was the one who placed myself in that situation in the first place.
  8. that sucks mate... I know how you feel about people going off at you when they are in the wrong (or oblivious to you being there)! :evil:

    I can confirm that the bus is supposed indicate for 3 seconds before pulling out. Rarely happens though... I hate having to deal with bus' on a daily basis, and they seem to be getting worse. Especially down King William St...

    I can also confirm what Z900 said! :roll:
  9. I hear ya, and agree with that perspective.

    As I tend to think in the hindsight a lot, it does help in identifying errors and improve on past mistakes / experiences. I have encountered a few similar situations to what you mentioned. I never get upset, but I usually try to avoid those situations in the first place. Not in this case, obviously.

    I didn't feel angry towards the bus driver, but I did think he could've handled himself better. Likewise with me, I suppose. I need to learn sign language because I couldn't explain the situation to him through my helmet and his un-windable window.
  10. I think we all need to learn that. Great that you're well anyway. Don't need another rider down thread.
  11. you could carry a whiteboard marker and write a message...

    I'd let it go, and be aware that they weigh a lot more than most vehicles on the rad and are probably going to pull out anyway.
  12. The Australian Road Rules(advisory only depending on State take up of the laws) says that any vehicle that is stationary at the side of the road, when deciding to pull out into traffic, must give 5 seconds of indicator before pulling out. So you would think that should be the standard. However, in the section about the "Give way to buses" law, it says that any bus pulling out only has to give "sufficient warning". It doesn't state a minimum time. Then, the rule for drivers is that when seeing this indication you have to give way or even stop to avoid a collision.

    Of course, if you try to challenge a public bus authority on this type of issue, you will get nowhere because anything that slows them down makes the public transport system slower - that ain't going to happen. And the law is written so the driver can be blamed - how do you prove how much warning was given when it is your word against the bus driver's when the bus driver has the law in their favour. Best fix is to setup the brakes, prepare for them to pull out and then think it a bonus when they wait for you to pass before pulling out.

    One favourite manoeuvre of buses in Canberra is to ignore the lane arrows at intersections so they can bypass lines of traffic and then cut off those patient drivers who were doing the right thing. Totally illegal from all that I have read but what can you do. Maybe there is a special law in Canberra that allows them to do this.
  13. I'm sure that there are hundreds of people who have died on the roads, despite being in 'the right'. As Cejay said, best to keep an eye out and don't get yourself into those sticky situations.
  14. I couldn't find images on google.. but here goes:

    Make a fist, extend middle finger and shake at driver 1 second
    Point index finger at driver 1 second
    Pretend you are holding an ice cream, and gesture as though you are stamping your forehead repeatedly with the cold end for as long as you like.

    That is universal sign language for "Sir, I think you should check your mirrors when changing lanes or moving into traffic from the kerb. Please be more alert in the future."
  15. If you read the OP, you'll find the bus did exactly that. Except that the OP came from behind a vehicle waiting to turn right by veering to the left of the 4WD which placed him behind then the bus, which was parked in the bay in a way that meant that the drivers immediate rear view was of the back right hand side of his bus and the 4WD waiting to turn right.

    Perhaps this is harsh, but from my view from over here, the bus driver did nothing more than would be expected of anyone here, given the same situation. We can quote 3s or 5s rules, but if you're driving a heavy vehicle that people generally don't let out from the bus stops, do you, having seen nothing behind you, indicate and wait patiently for 5s (thereby now having to wait for someone to let you in - unlikely) or pull out.

    I made a point a post or two ago about how I placed myself in a situation where technically I was correct, but the truth of it was that if I had of been hit, I would have had no one to blame but myself. It was a timely wakeup call that the speed and manoeuvrability of bikes sometimes allows us to place ourselves in positions where people really don't expect us to be.
  16. You were a little cheeky and you probably should have just stopped an waited.

    That said i would have done exactly the same.