2932: Driving PSA

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Driving PSA
This PSA brought to you by several would-be assassins who tried to wave me in front of speeding cars in the last month and who will have to try harder next time.
Title text: This PSA brought to you by several would-be assassins who tried to wave me in front of speeding cars in the last month and who will have to try harder next time.

Explanation[edit]

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A PSA is a Public Service Announcement. Some drivers, when having priority by the rules of the road (termed "right of way" in US legal statutes), will let others take it before them. However, yielding the right of way when it is not required does not legally grant the other driver the right of way -- they may still be required to yield to other vehicles on the road. (Hence the title of the PSA: "Random drivers can't grant you the right of way as a gift.")

At a 4-way stop, giving another driver the right of way is usually safe and courteous, but in other cases it can be dangerous. This comic is saying that people who exhibit this behavior dangerously can be assumed to be Terminator-style assassins, sent to kill you by sending you into contention with other traffic to make it look like an accident, and thereby prevent some future act on your part that is not to their liking.

In this comic, the deferential driver is holding up a queue of vehicles (including a large tractor-trailer truck) that is obscuring the immediate view of oncoming traffic. Instead of simply turning left and reducing the queue, they are waving Randall's car into that traffic, perhaps because they forgot that the other lanes have priority over the crossing driver. The effect could be to wave him through right into the path of another car traveling at full speed — a clever way for a time-traveling assassin to take down one's target without arousing suspicion.

Not pulling into traffic when your view is obstructed is good advice, and Randall's comical exaggeration may make the advice more memorable. Always check for yourself that your way is clear, and if your view is blocked, sit tight.

However, Randall seems to be assuming that the waving gesture can only ever mean one thing: Pull all the way into traffic. It may be that a "waving out" gesture is intended to give the waiting car a chance to turn into the median strip (see details below). Viewing courteous behavior as conclusive evidence of a temporal assassination conspiracy is humorously ego-centric and improbable.

The title text explains that Randall made this PSA because he has experienced this multiple times in the last month, and that the assassins should try harder next time.

Alternate interpretation of the waving gesture[edit]

Note that in this comic, as currently illustrated, there appears to be sufficient room in the median strip for the waiting car to pass the first set of lanes and stop in the median strip, protected from passing traffic on both sides, to legally wait for the second stream of traffic to safely subside. Waiting in this median turning area is a normal maneuver in suburban and exurban US areas where these types of non-signaled intersections are common. There's no reason to assume that the supposed would-be assassin is not simply waving the waiting car to the safety of the median strip. Randall's message of caution is still sound, but he accidentally illustrated an intersection diagram that fails to optimally support his case.

Illustration showing room to safely turn left halfway, stopping in the median strip

Legality

Median strips are typically used to allow vehicles to safely make left turns without impeding the flow of traffic. When emerging from a side road, vehicles can cross the first lane(s) of traffic and wait in the median strip until it is safe to merge into the opposite lane(s).

  • In Texas, using the median strip to wait for a gap in traffic is generally acceptable. The Texas Department of Public Safety suggests that drivers use the median strip when appropriate. Source: Texas laws
  • The state of Utah also allows this to happen.
  • In Denmark, it is considered bad practice to pause in the median strip when crossing; left turns should be carried out in a continuous maneuver.

Transcript[edit]

Ambox notice.png This transcript is incomplete. Please help editing it! Thanks.
Driving PSA:
Random drivers can’t grant you the right of way as a gift.
[A T-intersection with a major road separated by a concrete median going from top to bottom, and a minor road coming from the left]
[A car is stopped at the end of the minor road]
First car [arrow pointing to car]: You, waiting to turn left
[A second car is stopped in the dedicated left turn lane of the right major road, with a third car, a truck hauling cargo, and a fourth car lined up behind it]
Second car [in a speech bubble]: You go ahead! I’m feeling generous.
Second car [arrow pointing to car]: Time traveler pretending to be polite
[In the second lane is a black arrow pointing upwards, with text below it reading 45 MPH, and a fifth car below the text]
Fifth car [arrow pointing to car]: Car that they are waving you into the path of
If someone waves you out, assume that they are an assassin sent from the future to kill you and make it look like an accident.


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Discussion

Did the best I could on the explanation, even if it's a bit clunky. Trogdor147 (talk) 03:59, 14 May 2024 (UTC)


Pretty lame strategy. Even with someone waving me on, when I get past them I'll look to the right to make sure. Barmar (talk) 04:22, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

Right? Just pull into the median in front of the left-turners, then re-assess the situation. --Coconut Galaxy (talk) 12:59, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
Just an FYI: It's illegal to use turn lanes for merging, & illegal to wait mid-intersection. By law, you must not enter the intersection until the right-of-way is clear. No stopping partway through; that can get you a ticket.
ProphetZarquon (talk) 18:07, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
As a pedestrian (amongst my other road-uses), I occasionally have to cross a two-lane carriageway (to the median, then across the opposite two-lane carriageway) near a junction (roundabout, in the UK; and the first lane dedicated to turning in (left, equiv. to a US right-turn) to the side-road) and the initial lane is often either entirely empty or jammed up by those trying to turn into the retail park that sits there. I have to juggle the kindness of drivers who will slow (or stay stopped) to let me across their lane with the possibility of having other (faster-moving) traffic still coming up on the other lane. It's possible to use the twixt-lane white line as a kind of unofficial demi-median (the stopped driver will not forget that they let you go there), but I'd rather not surprise the through-traffic lane by giving them an alarming glimpse of a pedestrian maybe about to step out in front of them, so I might try to indicate to the kind driver (with friendly gestures) that I'm observing someone coming up on their offside (due to slight bend, on entry to the junction, they might not see them in their own offside mirror), perhaps even then stand back and wave them past because I can see a glut of offside traffic, from my head-height position. Or just avoid those times of the day when there's heavy shopping/commuting traffic causing that sort of problem.
(Yes, it is a proper crossing point. Dropped kerbs for those that need dropped kerbs, though not given pelican/zebra/etc explicit crossing markings and signage. An alternate way 'across' is a walk down to a canal that the onward road crosses by bridge, under that bridge on the tow-path and then back to meet the opposite side of the road.)
The junction-exit carriageway is far simpler. You can see when traffic is coming down the through-road or spinning round the island from the RP exit (or U-turning from the first carriageway!) and either there's a third-of-a-mile queue backed up from the next junction or there's no traffic impeding those going that way to leave me with space to cross.
The opposite crossing is a matter of the 'easy' junction-exit carriageway (as just given) plus an unrestricted view of the fast-lane, but then you need to catch the eye of any queued turn-lane vehicles (and look at what round-the-roundabout traffic might be holding the front of that queue up, in the near future) to make sure that when you take advantage of a clear offside then the subsequent nearside cars don't start shuffling up. And recognise the oblivious/inconsiderate/obtuse drivers by their general road positioning and attitude at the wheel. (It's a bit of an art, but stood me in good stead so far.)
There is also, elsewher, a particularly akward right-turn (UK, remember) onto a mainish road, that I sometimes need to drive round. It comes in as single-becoming-double lane, but these days that double is buslane and singular other (from the right, the double-becoming-single is also buslane nearside, except for inward turners who aren't in contention with me but are potentially view-blocking). Between the two carriageways (which merge, at the single-lane side, as two standard single contra-carriageways beyond an actual light-controlled staggered pedestrian crossing) is the central turning refuge that I potentially need to pause in to turn right, and left-approaching traffic may need to pause in (crossing my path) to turn into the road I'm emerging from. The most problematic are the turning-in cars that don't signal (or far too late), given that everyone (not a bus) has to keep right anyway on this widened stretch, but some of them are keeping right in order to turn right. And driver-to-driver visual communication (or even seeing if they're glancing in your direction/meeting your questioning gaze) is isn't helped by angled windscreens often drowning out (apparent) driver-on-driver visibility by the reflection of the sky above. So it pays to be cautious, and taking a moment before taking apparent cues (arm waves, light flashes, etc) as you think they might be intended. 172.70.160.248 15:55, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
Not reading all that. Psychoticpotato (talk) 12:42, 17 May 2024 (UTC)

Maybe they're not trying to kill Randall, but the person in the other lane. 172.71.154.225 05:00, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

It doesn't even need to be a fatal crash. Maybe the person in the other lane is an obstetrician who will intercede in a complex childbirth, and this "accident" will be major enough that that no longer happens, and the child dies... Yorkshire Pudding (talk) 06:55, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
Or possibly the aim is actually to engineer a meet-cute between Randall and the driver of the other car, so that a critical birth can (eventually) take place...172.70.160.249 08:24, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
Well now I want to see a movie where there is a tragic accident and the dying words of one character to another that survives is to take care of their spouse (critically injured in said accident) and their turbulent and tumultuous relationship as they try to get over both survivors guilt and potentially blaming themselves/each other for the death of that first character. 172.70.38.21 19:37, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

Just curious, as I'm from Germany - does the USA have no traffic lights? 198.41.242.210 07:15, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

They do, and they are placed where you can actually see them --Coconut Galaxy (talk) 12:59, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
They do, and they're placed where they can be used for Captcha challenges.172.70.86.81 14:28, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
Only on some intersections. This is likely a case where a relatively small / quiet road intersects with a busy one. Traffic lights tend to be used in the USA where both roads intersecting are beyond a minimum throughput of traffic to justify the cost. 172.64.238.33 12:06, 15 May 2024 (UTC)
I think I've seen such setups in Ohio, but here in New Jersey I cannot imagine a scenario like this. Any movement between a divided highway and another road where left turns are allowed in both directions will be controlled by a traffic light with a left arrow. 162.158.63.69 16:03, 16 May 2024 (UTC)
Not having a traffic light here in North America is common if the up/down road is very important and busy, and Randall's road is VERY minor. In other words, Randall's road isn't important enough to stop up/down traffic for a traffic light, the city planners feel the occasional car there can just wait for a gap in traffic. On the other hand, I don't think I've ever seen a dedicated left-turn lane like this WITHOUT a traffic light, or at least not one with so many cars waiting without a red light. :) NiceGuy1 (talk) 06:40, 19 May 2024 (UTC)


Uncontrolled intersection with a left turn onto a 4-lane road? US road design, combined with US car-centric settlement planning, must have been made by those more clever, trying-harder assassins that Randall mentions in the title text, and it looks like they've got a lot of people on their list. 162.158.229.131 07:20, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

If it was a single lane street, and not three-lane road (or stroad), then accepting granting the right of way / waving in would be perfectly safe (assuming that you watch left). --JakubNarebski (talk) 07:23, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
This is very common in some areas such as Tucson, AZ. --172.70.214.66 17:11, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
Agreed. This is likely a case where a relatively small / quiet road intersects with a busy one. Traffic lights tend to be used in the USA where both roads intersecting are beyond a minimum throughput of traffic to justify the cost. 172.64.238.33 12:06, 15 May 2024 (UTC)
Outside of US, joining a "quiet" road onto one that is so "loud" that it needs two lanes each way *and* a separated median is ... kinda crazy. The fact that you see it as "normal as per the minimum throughput criteria" shows that you're entrenched in a car-centric view. Any sane non-US road designer either doesn't join two roads together in the first place when the loud/quiet ratio is so out-of-whack, or if they *have* to join them (but still don't want traffic lights) then they'll provide something along the lines of a merge/acceleration lane, or a "no left turn" traffic control. 172.68.64.223 03:38, 16 May 2024 (UTC)
UK roads vary considerably in this. If sufficient side-road use, then lights may be used (with proximity sensors, if side-traffic is light but ocasionally needs to get a chance to get out by pausing through-traffic), but for very minor roads abutting sufficiently major ones (to have medians and multiple lanes per direction) they may just have no cross-median (to turn across and right), just left-turn (merge onto the nearside) and rely upon the roundabout not far down the road to allow seemless U-turn for those needing that direction. This is the default for 'motorway standard' roads (actual "M-roads", including "A#(M)" ones, and upgraded trunk-roads probably maintained/developed under Highway Authority budget rather than anything left to (sub)regional-responsibility) which now have far fewer roundabouts even (except as flyovers, of various configurations, up slip-roads), in the name of keeping the traffic flowing.
Roundabouts do a lot of this heavy lifting for any road less than motorway standard, and motorway-standard junctions will have fly-over/-under for one or other topological permutation of a cloverleaf junction so that you always merge from the left.
If the median-based cross-slip is still used, then it'll often include a widening of median for sufficient length to have deceleration lanes (the comic one looks rather short, as evidenced by there being no more room for any further cross-turning vehicle to join the queue without blocking the 'fast' lane) and a better way to observe all lanes by the onward-turning traffic and accelerate-merge properly onto the carriageway. If it isn't (especially as per illustrated for Highway Code item 173) then you're expected to use best judgement to deal with it.
With a few caveats (such as there clearly having been enough instantaneous traffic to fill up the cross-turn deceleration lane, which can't be 'all' explained by the right-of-way-waiving vehicle, and some slightly different shapes of kerbing in the vicinity), you certainly could see an equivalent-but-mirrored junction as the comic in the UK. You could also see the non-turning vehicle zooming through, but a) it should not be sitting in the offside lane (unless overtaking an unseen, off-comic vehicle on the nearside), and b) it'll probably be going faster (technically could be up to 70MPH for National Speed Limit on dual-carriageway, though it's very likely the junction itself will be re-restricted down to 60MPH or even 50MPH). Not that drivers necesarily keep out of the 'overtaking' lane(s) when they don't need to, or stay below the statutary/posted limits. And if this is an 'urban trunkroad' it may actually even be 40MPH all the way, with frequent 30MPH (or even 20MPH) sideroads feeding/fed-by it.
But there'll be exceptions, both more restrictive and less restrictive, than even the various range of places and solutions that I can immediately bring to mind. 172.69.195.180 23:02, 16 May 2024 (UTC)


Ok, but... time traveller asassins don't get sent for random harmless people? Getting not one, but MULTIPLE asassins hell-bent on offing him suggests he's going to do something incredibly bad for the world that they're trying to prevent?? 162.158.103.68 08:35, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

Randall isn't random and it's not entirely clear that he's harmless either. 172.70.91.146 (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)
It seems reasonable to guess that the future assassins were sent to prevent Randall from writing this very same strip, as it was thwarting many of their other future asassination attempts. Rumormonger Omega (talk) 14:40, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
You are assuming the assassins are "good guys", it is just as likely that Randall will do something that most of us would regard as a good thing but it impedes the assassin's, or their master's, evil plan; akin to Skynet sending the Terminators to kill Sarah/Young John Connor to remove the human resistance as an effective counter to the machine uprising. There's also the possibility that Randall is part of a "butterfly effect" scenario where he doesn't directly do anything of note, but something he does will have downstream effects that result in someone else doing something impactful to the assassin's preferred future.172.70.135.56 16:01, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
Shouldn't our reality be clogged with swarms of time-traveling butterfly assassins? In fact, why do butterflies even exist? Surely they would have been wiped out on some primordial beach eons ago. These Are Not The Comments You Are Looking For (talk) 21:35, 19 May 2024 (UTC)
It's quite obvious that one of examples in What If 3 will be used to win World War IV. The assassins from losing side are trying to prevent writing the book, hoping that without it the other side never get so crazy idea. -- Hkmaly (talk) 19:59, 14 May 2024 (UTC)


Oh boy, a comic about my second-greatest pet peeve on the road! Now if only we could have an xkcd guide to using the acceleration lane. Phil Srobeighn (talk) 09:51, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

...and turning signals... Elektrizikekswerk (talk) 09:53, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
As we do not have intersections like this, MY personal pet peeve is people stopping to wave kids over the road. Wrong for SO MANY reasons.
First, the people in the car usually don't think of the OTHER lane (and kids won't, either).
Second, I am trying to teach my kids to look left and right and only cross the road when there are no cars. If a car approaches, they are to wait until it has passed. Well, but then the car STOPS and the kid gets irritated and doesn't know what to do, because when they are small they just stare at the car and not at the driver, so they never see the waving. And so we are at a stalemate, the car is just standing there, the kid is just standing there, and chances are the kid will decide to cross the road right at the same moment the driver decides he has waited long enough.--172.70.243.227 21:29, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

A corollary PSA would be to ignore the gestures of any passengers in the other car. I've seen passengers in the front seat wave people to go ahead, without the agreement of the person actually driving the car.172.70.178.45 10:29, 14 May 2024 (UTC)Pat

I don't even drive and I hate these people lmao Psychoticpotato (talk) 12:40, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

A discussion of the liability issue in this situation. [1] Philhower (talk) 15:55, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
TL;DR: Waving makes you liable in the state of Virginia (also in Germany)


I remember when taking my driver's education class (in New Jersey, in 1987), the instructor made a point of teaching us to ignore civilians waving and to never wave other traffic anywhere. If you wave a car in this manner, and it ends up getting into a collision, you can be held liable for the damage. You could also be charged with directing traffic without authorization - something typically only done by law enforcement officers and road construction crews. Shamino (talk) 17:27, 14 May 2024 (UTC)


I must point out, no one has a privilege to go. The "right of way" only refers to the side of the road. Stop using the term wrong. SDSpivey (talk) 20:46, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

I'm going to assume this is a joke, but for everyone who might believe it, "right of way" does indeed refer to the privilege ("right") to use a road ("way").
Like everything else in the comic and the comments here, that depends on jurisdiction. For example, in Australia "right of way" doesn't exist - at least not as a right that can be asserted. Throughout the road rule legislation, references are made to situations where a driver has to give way to other traffic, but there is nothing that explicitly gives a driver "right of way" over any other traffic. As a driver I am obliged to recognise situations where I have to give priority to other drivers, but there is no explicit right to take priority. The legislation also requires all drivers to do what they can to avoid collisions. Paddles (talk) 23:38, 14 May 2024 (UTC)
"has to give way to other traffic", that IS "right of way". That's what the phrase means, when the laws say who is supposed to go first. :) For example, I'm not sure how official THIS is, but at least the rule (law?) is that if both of these cars - Randall and the waver - arrived at the EXACT same time, the priority is that the person to the right goes first, until you run out of people (if someone was across from Randall and also arrived at the same time, HE would get to go first, then the waver, then Randall. Since there isn't, that means the waver goes first. Except the line shows that they DIDN'T arrive at the same time). There's also laws about someone going straight has priority over someone turning, and I know in some parts of the world the big road has right of way over the small road (so, since everyone is turning, the waver would go first due to being on a higher priority road). NiceGuy1 (talk) 06:56, 19 May 2024 (UTC)
I concur. It depends on Jurisdiction. Some states definitely use the phrase "right of way" in their traffic laws. If there's an accident, the party with the right of way is presumed not at fault because he had the right to do what he did. In other states (like NJ), there is no such thing - the law only states that drivers in certain situations "must yield". In a state like this, if a traffic case goes to court, the judge will only try to determine the answer to "were you able to prevent the collision?" If you were (and in many cases, the answer is "yes" for both parties), then you may be found liable, even if the other driver violated the law (e.g by failing to yield where he was required to). Shamino (talk) 17:29, 16 May 2024 (UTC)


I want to clarify that the initial post on this thread is not entirely correct, as it is dependent on the jurisdiction, whether it be on a national level, state level, etc. Where I am from in the United States in the state of Utah, for instance, it is codified in Utah traffic code 41-6a-801 Subsections (3)(b)(i) and (3)(d) (see https://le.utah.gov/xcode/Title41/Chapter6A/41-6a-S801.html?v=C41-6a-S801_2015051220150512 if you want) that traffic can turn into the turn lane and wait until the opportunity arises to merge, provided they do not travel further than 500 feet in that lane (in addition to other qualifications that are largely irrelevant to the present subject). While that is inapplicable in the case of this comic, as I do not know of ANY jurisdiction where turning onto a median itself is legal, that does not necessarily mean that it is illegal to turn into a dual direction turn lane and then merge into traffic in all jurisdictions. Apologies if I formatted this comment poorly.SilentLurker (talk) 23:00, 14 May 2024 (UTC)


If this has happened to Randall several times during the last month alone, then MAYBE he has a habit of stopping his car too far out and/or too far on the left? So that the left-turning time travellers would have difficulties getting past him? Just asking, because this is when people regularly wave ME out. --162.158.154.77 08:05, 15 May 2024 (UTC)

Randall lives in Boston. When I lived in Boston variations on people helpfully waving me to my death was a common occurrence. Bugstomper (talk) 11:51, 15 May 2024 (UTC)


Applauds rare actually funny use of Citation needed. 172.70.163.121 10:40, 15 May 2024 (UTC)

There's no "citation needed" used here, what. Psychoticpotato (talk) 12:45, 17 May 2024 (UTC)
It was added at this point, and removed at this one (it had actually bother arrived and disappeared during a period I wasn't checking, and didn't see the .121's comment until even later, but it was easy enough to track down). 162.158.74.119 23:24, 17 May 2024 (UTC)
(PS, for the IP suggesting filter-banning "explainxkcd.com" addresses, elsewhere, the above links wouldn't be directly possible - yes, maybe a more wikimarkup/wikitemplate-mediated replacements for various non-trivial parameterised local site URLs could fill that gap, but it's just so much easier to [] the URL. For the same reason, I wouldn't suggest a wikipedia.org filter-ban, even though we do need to stop people doing that as well.) 162.158.74.119 23:24, 17 May 2024 (UTC)

Why does the assassin have to be time-travelling? This method would work just as well (or badly) for a regular assassin as long as they can track the car and head them off at busy intersections. As an assassination method, it leaves something to be desired because (1) collisions at 45 mph are not guaranteed to be fatal, especially side or rear collisions where the target is inside a car with modern safety features, and (2) there would be a police investigation and the assassin would have their details taken, at the least. Comsmomf (talk) 10:46, 15 May 2024 (UTC)

I think the bigger problem with this situation is that the person waiving their right if way is preventing the left-turn lane to drain, which is about to spill over into the lane to its right. --Coconut Galaxy (talk) 12:18, 26 May 2024 (UTC)

Churchill's Law[edit]

Just to reframe "Car that they are waving you into the path of" into an awkaward phrase NOT ending in a preposition: "Car into the path of which they are waving you". (The Churchill thing is a myth, though <https://quoteinvestigator.com/2012/07/04/churchill-preposition/> .) 162.158.134.225 (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Yuck - that construction needs waving into the path of an oncoming car. Or possibly it already has been.172.69.43.183 14:31, 14 May 2024 (UTC)

PSA[edit]

I thought PSA was Peugeot Société Anonyme, and was wondering why this was specific to French Cars. Or possibly Prostate specific antibody. Maybe Platform Security Acrhitecture

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PSA

172.69.43.223 07:51, 15 May 2024 (UTC)

in America, PSA usually stands for Public Service Announcement-and Randall is from and lives in America.

42.book.addict (talk) 17:12, 15 May 2024 (UTC)

I just cackled so loudly that I scared my cat off my lap. Prostate-specific antibody? Help Psychoticpotato (talk) 12:48, 17 May 2024 (UTC)

This discussion ^^[edit]

For a bicyclist like me, it is quite weird to have such a lengthy discussion about laws in using an intersection by car. Here in Germany, we would rather talk about psychological aspects (like being put under pressure by having been granted right-of-way).

I, as german bicyclist, often observe how “polite” drivers get angry because I don’t use the right-of-way they granted me. They even sometimes open their window and swear at me. (And if they are bicyclists too, they don’t even need to open the window.) It’s like some people are trying to kill me, just like Randall has exemplified here. (Oh, by the way, only males have sweared at me so far.) --172.68.195.212 08:05, 17 May 2024 (UTC)

Can't speak of Germany (only been a pedestrian or car passenger, there), but I've cycled in France, Netherlands and lands inbetween. (Plus Denmark!). In Belgium in particular, motorists will patiently wait for cyclists to go first at junctions. Awkward when we've just been stopped to read the map, are still confering and aren't really in a hurry to go in the chosen direction yet.
But it's a breath of fresh air compared to here in the UK where the right-of-way of cyclists is often ignored, if not worse. Noting here that I'm talking from the perspective of cyclists who are obeying the rules of the road, and put a lot of the blame against "people on bikes" who do not. As well as excessive, yet simultaneously inadequate, cycle-paths and lanes which change everyone's expectations and make motorists and "people on bikes" convinced that the right (indeed, often obligation!) for bicycles to use the road doesn't exist.
(The more wheels being ridden on the pavement/footway, the worse. It's actually illegal, unless designated and marked as a shared/split cycle+pedestrian path, but often the limited stretch of 'token cycle infrastructure' is badly implemented/observed. I've seen bikes being ridden on the pavement at the side of a road with a cycle lane clearly marked on the roadway (and not blocked by parked cars, or anything). I'd actually rather no 'special infrastructure' and instead a universal (non-Motorway/etc, of course) acceptance that bicycles/horses/etc can and may be on the roads.)
With that, what you're getting in Germany (I've extended experience of wandering all across Berlin, albeit a couple of decades ago) is probably rooted in more sympathetic laws/practices added to the universal possibility of any road-user to be irritated by any other (with or without justification – there are bike-riders that totally get on my nerves, at least by proxy, when I see them just dodging on and off the road, on the wrong side, passing through red lights, across in-use pedestrian crossings, etc... if they aren't in contention with me, directly, they're souring the pitch for when I'm the one trying to be a responsible rider).
I also get annoyed by pedestrian and driver behaviour (or apparent obliviousness) when I'm pedestrianing/cycling/driving through the same space. Not saying that I'm perfect, or might not be seen as imperfect. If I take an opportunity to walk across/near a crossing without pressing the button, it probably is because I judge that I can dodge across between streams of traffic safely without adding the (longer than I need, and delayed before it starts) stop light to their travel woes (if I'm the only person who would be waiting). Very occasionally, a car on the opposite lane, who I had comfortably judged to have passed (with empty road behind them) before I get anywhere near them will spot me and stop (I probably then am forced to bend my path to pass behind them), misunderstanding the whole consideration I was attempting to grant them (though it often does mean they weren't hazard-perceiving enough to start with, to have only seen me as they were basically almost past me – if I were as oblivious, I'd have been walking into their side!). But the world isn't perfectly in tune.
Of course, people sealed in metal-and-glass boxes aren't as easy to transmit intentions to/from, leaving the "after you"/"no, after you"/”the thing is, I'm just pausing to decide which way to go" (howsoever abbreviated) dialogue reduced to a bit of arm-waving/hand-unfurling that might get supplemented by various mechanical audible signals or whole-vehicle micro-movements. But converging cyclists (or pedestrians) can also have that awkward period when (perhaps) both parties are fully aware of the imminent brief joining together at at the same rough space-time coordinates, but sufficiently comprehensive communication for negotiation/coordination purposes is not yet achievable. You have to take each situation as it comes, and the two parties may have entirely different mindsets and drives in control of their current attitude to cooperation in this endeavour. ("I'm late for lunch!", "Where shall I have lunch?", "That lunch really isn't agreeing with me.", "...after lunch, I'm going to have to talk to...", "I can't believe this lunchtime traffic!"...) 172.70.90.191 11:10, 17 May 2024 (UTC)
It doesn't matter if you are talking about car or bike - they have to abide to the same rules. Especially if there are no dedicated traffic lights for bikes. Elektrizikekswerk (talk) 13:58, 17 May 2024 (UTC)
Yes and no. For example, in the UK a bicyle-rider cannot be charged with exceeding the speed limit (although "wanton and furious riding" and various other carlessness/inconsiderateness charges could be applied), and there is perhaps going to be the adding of "Death by dangerous cycling" to the statutes (IMO, and IME, this is not a current problem... causing death by any means is already capable of being prosecuted, or deemed not prosecutable), it's not like people on bikes are getting away with anything (if anything, car drivers aren't being properly punished enough for their dangerous driving - speaking as a car-driver myself, even).
But, definitely road signals/etc that don't have explicit differentiations to them should be obeyed equally. Seeing several cars go out through a red-light, today (I was walking and saw it, a kid-on-a-bike(-on-the-pavement) nearly got hit by one where he may have been Ok if he'd have been on the road and obeying his set of traffic lights), it's not really a bike problem, let alone a cyclist one. 162.158.33.164 23:44, 17 May 2024 (UTC)
The comic (and "this discussion") is about right of way. Right-of-way-rules (or equivalent) are valid for all vehicles so your nitpicking is irrelevant. Elektrizikekswerk (talk) 10:56, 24 May 2024 (UTC)
The same rules may be differential in observence between road-users. By even mentioning "dedicated traffic lights for bikes" (which I've never seen, except in the context of a Toucan Crossing) you are in fact implying that "there are different instructions for different traffic", and suggesting that each type of traffic is therefore abiding to those differences. Personally, I think that makes things worse than "everything on the road has to just obey the rules and deal with everything else on the road that is obeying the rules", and encourages entitlement by those who probably don't even know the rules in the first place (or, in the case of drivers, forgot them soon after passing their driving test - today I walked past some workmen repainting a "40" 'reminder' on a recently resurfaced road that's a bit of a rural-ratrun, and we had a bit of a joke that nobody would even pay any attention to their good work). So I don't really know if we can even agree which bit of your point I'd be nitpicking with. Meh, it's probably opinion anyway. 162.158.74.68 22:31, 24 May 2024 (UTC)
The comic is about right-of-way, you were nitpicking by mentioning speed limits. People who don't know the rules don't belong on the road. As for dedicated traffic lights for bikes: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traffic_light#Cycle_signals and (in German) https://www.bussgeldkatalog.de/fahrradampel/ Elektrizikekswerk (talk) 07:20, 27 May 2024 (UTC)
My words were "which I've never seen". In the UK, except in the context of a Toucan Crossing. We have those advanced stop lines, aplenty, with the exact same round (or arrowed) traffic lights directing every vehicle (however many wheels, however many engines) sitting in the appropriate slot on the road. But the Toucan crossing is the only 'bike-only green' seen (except that it's not bike-only, it's bike-and-pedestrian, ...and-horse, also, if combined with a Pegasus crossing), and that's not on the road but across a road, and it quite on roads where bikes are likely also using the road (and obeying their direction's all-traffic signals, if ridden correctly).
And it seems we're never going to mesh with what it means about "having to obey the same rules" where some rules are explicitly about motor vehicles and therefore exempt non-motor ones. But, IMO, should be practically enforced better against electrical-motor-assisted vehicles that are barely - or not even - bicycles any more... i.e. illegally supercharged "no pedalling" variations on regular electric bikes, the electric scooters that are on the dodgy side of legality for much of the country (road or footway) and unlicenced+unregistered full on electric-motorbikes that don't even pretend to have pedals; all of these are giving legitimate cyclists and electrically-assisted cyclists even more of a bad name. 172.70.162.17
Ok, last post from me in this topic: I know signs (and thus "special rules") for tractors, cars, trucks, trailers, buses, taxis, caravans, bikes, mopeds (incl. small scooters), motorbikes, electro scooters, horses, even skates and skateboards (albeit I doubt these are official), but none for (un)motorized verhicles (except one that requires you to kill the engine when halting). So maybe it's an UK issue. Most of the mentioned rules don't affect the right-of-way but regulate access to specific lanes, roads and streets or parking places. Toucan-style crossings are very common here, too (albeit they don't have a special name here, afaik), and are no exception to this as they grant access to the crossing (normally only for pedestrians) for bikes which, without that dedicated bike traffic light, would need to use the "normal" road (and traffic lights) like a car. Which is exactly my point. I'd agree though that those overpowered electro bikes shouldn't be treated as "normal" bikes but more like mopeds. Elektrizikekswerk (talk) 14:24, 27 May 2024 (UTC)

The thing is, with or without the semi, I feel like Randall wouldn't be able to see well enough to properly ascertain safety, and thus (with or without the truck, with or without waving) he'd have to approach the median anyway, cross the near side anyway, spot the danger guy all on his own. Also, seems weird to have a dedicated left-turn lane WITHOUT a traffic light, at the very least seems weird to have a LINE when there's no light stopping them. If the truck was in front, maybe, since he needs a FAR bigger gap in oncoming traffic... NiceGuy1 (talk) 06:40, 19 May 2024 (UTC)

Explanation Complete?[edit]

This explanation seems complete to me. I think we should remove the tag. PDesbeginner (talk) 03:55, 19 June 2024 (UTC)

I will wait until June 23 for any objections. Then I will remove the tag. PDesbeginner (talk) 14:42, 19 June 2024 (UTC)

If you have to ask, you clearly aren't sure enough. Yes, probably a little 'old' (back a month) to still have this. But if it hasn't gone, then I can only imagine that those editors who would delete it from the very latest comic (before even the next gets put up) have had their reasons not to. I'm a great fan of "consensus by doing", though. For anything not actually clearly trolling then it's cleaner to ask forgiveness than permission, if you have it wrong. If you removed it and someone else disagreed and replaced it then... well, then it becomes a matter of opinion, and anybody else who wishes to weigh in on the issue.
This whole site is a community effort, and the net community opinion will rectify anything that the net community finds wrong. (Whether that be the removal of anything or not removing something...) 162.158.49.85 21:51, 19 June 2024 (UTC)
Okay. Glad to have your opinion. PDesbeginner (talk) 14:19, 20 June 2024 (UTC)