There are reasons that daytime running lights have become standard on many cars, they add safety. It would be obvious to cyclist to add this extra level of safety to their daily bike rides, even during the daylight.
A Customer’s Story
Two years ago a good customer of the bike shop I was managing was literally run over by a car. She was on a quiet road during the mid day, with 4 open lanes around her. The customer is now healthy and able to bike again, but it was a touch and go case. The owner of the bike shop kept the fork off her run over bike in reminder of the actions we take when riding our bike. The driver of the car had a pretty standard reply, “I didn’t even see the person!” The cyclist was in a very shady part of the road and even though it was sunny out, she was camouflaged by her surroundings.
“I didn’t even see the person!”
As a cyclist and a driver I know this can sometimes be the case. When lighting is bad, clothing is dark and the cyclist blends into the scenery. With so many other distractions for drivers to checking in on, phone, radio or the screaming baby in the back, I push everyone to give them better time to see you.
Brighter clothing and not riding in the gutter can help this. My big push to every person I’ve ever sold a bike to that is going to be ridden on the road is a light. Buying batteries once a month is much cheaper than your life, and with most lights viewable 2,000+ feet behind I’ll take it.
From Facebook and Twitter
Several people chimed in on our Facebook and Twitter accounts to answer the question about riding with their blinky light on during the day.
Tawny Yambrovich I see other cyclists do it in daylight and it is virtually invisible; therefore it is a waste of batteries, and a waste of resources (reducing your use of batteries means fewer in landfills or needing recycling).
Tawny, I agree with you that normally a light isn’t viewable but in that one low light situation I would rather be wasting a bit more than wasting my life.
Josh Lipton Something really bright like the Planet Bike SuperFlash on flash mode is bright enough to easily catch people’s eyes even in broad daylight. I figure the sooner other road users see you, the better.
Amen. Give motorist a heads up that you are riding, most people aren’t used to riding around cyclist and they need prepared.