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  • FIRST POST
    • Doc N
    • By Doc N 18th May 17, 5:14 PM
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    Doc N
    Conundrum: Pedestrians on a narrow country road with no footpaths - who gives way?
    • #1
    • 18th May 17, 5:14 PM
    Conundrum: Pedestrians on a narrow country road with no footpaths - who gives way? 18th May 17 at 5:14 PM
    Outside towns and cities, but often just outside quite well populated villages, there are roads with no footpaths, just not particularly easily accessible verges.

    It's a sunny day on a quiet road, with not much traffic. You're driving a car - you spot a couple of pedestrians out for a walk and coming towards you. There are two of them, side by side, on your side of the road, but having seen you they move into single file.

    It's a narrow road, just about wide enough for two vehicles, there's another car coming towards you, and you expect the pedestrians to get off the road, onto the verge, to allow you to continue your journey without having to stop. But they don't - they just carry on walking single file.

    What do you do?

    1 Stop before you reach the pedestrians to allow the other car to pass safely.

    2 Blast your horn at the pedestrians to get them to move out of the way.

    3 Carry on regardless and take a chance on brushing against the pedestrians?

    Real life situation - I see it every day. What's the correct answer? An increasing number of drivers seem not to know what it is.
    Last edited by Doc N; 18-05-2017 at 8:24 PM.
Page 2
    • iammumtoone
    • By iammumtoone 18th May 17, 8:29 PM
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    iammumtoone
    Problem is everyone knows what the correct answer should be so you are never going to get anyone on a public forum to admit otherwise.

    However having experience of walking down the roads you describe I know what you are talking about.
    Sealed pot challenge ~ 10 #017
    Declutter 2017 items in 2017 - 78/2017

    • Doc N
    • By Doc N 18th May 17, 8:36 PM
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    Doc N
    As I understand it the OP would be the pedestrian in the scenario presented.
    Originally posted by iammumtoone
    Correct - and almost a dead one on occasion, because of ignorant, ill-informed, arrogant, abusive drivers who assume that they have the right of way, and that pedestrians should just get out of their way.

    Perhaps unsurprisingly, the problem's worst with van drivers, SUV drivers and certain marques of car (BMW for example).

    Abusive van and lorry drivers get reported, with details of the vehicle, to their companies whenever it happens (and oddly it's got a lot worse in the last year or so) and they always take the matter seriously, or at least appear to. Makes sense, because it affects the reputation of the company, indicates a potentially unsafe driver and may impact on their insurance premia.
    • WaywardDriver
    • By WaywardDriver 18th May 17, 8:37 PM
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    WaywardDriver


    1 Stop before you reach the pedestrians to allow the other car to pass safely.

    2 Blast your horn at the pedestrians to get them to move out of the way.

    3 Carry on regardless and take a chance on brushing against the pedestrians?

    Originally posted by Doc N
    Involved in this situation every day as the pedestrian. Pleased to say 99% of motorists (cars, hgvs, tractors) choose option 1 although I stand prepared to jump into the verge for the other 1%.
    Interesting to note how many times this scenario occurs when walking on a nearly deserted road - one car comes up before me and another comes out of nowhere behind me.
    • Iceweasel
    • By Iceweasel 18th May 17, 8:42 PM
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    Iceweasel

    Perhaps unsurprisingly, the problem's worst with van drivers, SUV drivers and certain marques of car (BMW for example).
    Originally posted by Doc N
    I was with you all the way - until you wrote this $hite.
    • Doc N
    • By Doc N 18th May 17, 8:44 PM
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    Doc N
    I was with you all the way - until you wrote this $hite.
    Originally posted by Iceweasel
    You're entitled to your view, of course, but that comment was based on hard evidence!

    And, by the way, I drive an SUV.
    • Jackmydad
    • By Jackmydad 18th May 17, 8:51 PM
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    Jackmydad
    Unfortunately some ignorant drivers believe they have the right of way . . .
    Originally posted by Norman Castle
    I usually say (to myself)
    "Oh dear! Have I obstructed your forward progress?"
    to people like this.
    It's an increasing problem on the narrow lanes around here. People who think they always have the right of way.
    I had a Motor home driver refuse to reverse literally two metres in a straight line with perfect visibility one day. I had to reverse about 100 metres back around a blind bend for him, and then got a load of abuse off his passenger!
    I might point out to people with this feeling of "entitlement" that on country lanes it's not just cars you might meet. Pedestrians, cattle, horses, combine harvesters, and tractors with spiky things attached.
    Good luck with the "But it was my right of way" when they are cutting you off said spiky things!
    • Iceweasel
    • By Iceweasel 18th May 17, 9:34 PM
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    Iceweasel
    You're entitled to your view, of course, but that comment was based on hard evidence!

    And, by the way, I drive an SUV.
    Originally posted by Doc N
    Hard evidence???????

    OK then - give us a link to it.

    Or do you mean in your experience?

    If the latter, please give us the statistics you have collected.

    You may well have gathered (correctly) that I don't believe you and stand by my comment in post #24
    • Robisere
    • By Robisere 18th May 17, 10:39 PM
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    Robisere
    If you have an obstruction on your side of the road you should be the one that gives way to oncoming traffic. Doesn't matter what that obstruction is.
    Originally posted by Mercdriver
    That's correct. It is also the safest option, for the pedestrians, the driver on their side of the carriageway and the oncoming vehicles. Commonsense is also a factor.
    There may be more than one way to skin a cat.
    But the result is always inedible.

    • Mercdriver
    • By Mercdriver 19th May 17, 12:16 AM
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    Mercdriver
    That's correct. It is also the safest option, for the pedestrians, the driver on their side of the carriageway and the oncoming vehicles. Commonsense is also a factor.
    Originally posted by Robisere
    You'd be amazed (actually, I suspect you wouldn't) at how many decide to plough right through anyway and attempt to make you reverse back. I make them do it.
    • arcon5
    • By arcon5 19th May 17, 8:13 AM
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    arcon5
    An idiotic question with an obvious answer...
    Progress cautiously then when oncoming vehicle has cleared you go round them.

    No need to dramatise it or make it overly complicated
    • Doc N
    • By Doc N 19th May 17, 8:34 AM
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    Doc N
    An idiotic question with an obvious answer...
    Progress cautiously then when oncoming vehicle has cleared you go round them.

    No need to dramatise it or make it overly complicated
    Originally posted by arcon5
    Not shake your fist and swear at the pedestrians for impeding your progress, then?
    • comeandgo
    • By comeandgo 19th May 17, 8:52 AM
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    comeandgo
    As a pedestrian I regularly have to walk on rural roads with passing places or just enough room for two cars to pass on and in over 50 years of walking I have never been tooted at, flashed lights or sworn at. All drivers know how to act in such occasions. OP why are you meeting all those bad drivers?
    • Doc N
    • By Doc N 19th May 17, 9:34 AM
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    Doc N
    As a pedestrian I regularly have to walk on rural roads with passing places or just enough room for two cars to pass on and in over 50 years of walking I have never been tooted at, flashed lights or sworn at. All drivers know how to act in such occasions. OP why are you meeting all those bad drivers?
    Originally posted by comeandgo
    A good question, and until a year or so back we (wife and I) had no problems at all. Then, over the last winter, when it was impossible to get onto the verge, things seemed to change. Patience seemed to go out of the window and we started encountering aggressive drivers shouting and waving.

    One even stopped his van after nearly hitting us and told us to get off the road - he was reported to his company. Others gesticulate and point to the verge.

    Part of the problem, I think, is that most people do actually get off the road and onto the verge - my wife has difficulty in doing that, and in any event it usually means getting muddy. Because most people get off the road, the assumption seems to be that vehicles have the right of way (contrary to the Highway Code) and anyone who doesn't is just seen as getting in the way.

    Maybe it's satnavs? The proportion of local drivers (mostly considerate) has fallen, and other drivers perhaps don't appreciate that it's not always easy or convenient just to get out of the way every time a car passes.

    The purpose of the question was to try to find out whether there was any knowledge of the Highway Code on this 'giving way' point. I must admit that I thought (before my wife corrected me) that we were obliged to get off the road, and I think many drivers assume that they have the right of way.
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 19th May 17, 10:32 AM
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    jack_pott
    Hard evidence???????

    OK then - give us a link to it.

    Or do you mean in your experience?

    If the latter, please give us the statistics you have collected.

    You may well have gathered (correctly) that I don't believe you and stand by my comment in post #24
    Originally posted by Iceweasel
    "As the expensiveness of the car increased, the drivers' tendencies to break the law increased as well" (8m 08s into the video)



    Specifically, drivers in more expensive cars are not giving way to pedestrians when they are legally obliged to do so.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-31761576
    • Car 54
    • By Car 54 19th May 17, 10:34 AM
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    Car 54

    The purpose of the question was to try to find out whether there was any knowledge of the Highway Code on this 'giving way' point. I must admit that I thought (before my wife corrected me) that we were obliged to get off the road, and I think many drivers assume that they have the right of way.
    Originally posted by Doc N
    Rule 2, for pedestrians: "If there is no pavement, keep to the right-hand side of the road so that you can see oncoming traffic. You should take extra care and
    • be prepared to walk in single file, especially on narrow roads or in poor light
    • keep close to the side of the road.
    It may be safer to cross the road well before a sharp right-hand bend so that oncoming traffic has a better chance of seeing you. Cross back after the bend."

    Rule 206, for drivers and riders. "Drive carefully and slowly when ... approaching pedestrians on narrow rural roads without a footway or footpath. Always slow down and be prepared to stop if necessary, giving them plenty of room as you drive past."

    In general, "The rules in The Highway Code do not give you the right of way in any circumstance, but they advise you when you should give way to others". In other words, there is no such thing as right of way - it is a myth.

    Finally, why not try reading the HC for yourself - it's free online these days https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-highway-code
    • jack_pott
    • By jack_pott 19th May 17, 10:36 AM
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    jack_pott
    Pedestrians are 'road users', along with cyclists, horse riders, motorcyclists, car drivers, White Van Man, lorries, ambulances, bin lorries, tractors and the like. All have an equal right to use the road as long as they obey the law.
    Originally posted by Richard53
    Not quite.

    Pedestrians, cyclists, and horse riders all have a statutory right to use a public highway, the remainder only use the highway under licence. A licence which is only issued subject to terms and conditions, and which can be withdrawn if those terms and conditions are not met.
    • Car 54
    • By Car 54 19th May 17, 10:38 AM
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    Car 54
    "As the expensiveness of the car increased, the drivers' tendencies to break the law increased as well" (8m 08s into the video)



    Specifically, drivers in more expensive cars are not giving way to pedestrians when they are legally obliged to do so.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-31761576
    Originally posted by jack_pott
    ... in California.
    • neilmcl
    • By neilmcl 19th May 17, 10:42 AM
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    neilmcl
    A good question, and until a year or so back we (wife and I) had no problems at all. Then, over the last winter, when it was impossible to get onto the verge, things seemed to change. Patience seemed to go out of the window and we started encountering aggressive drivers shouting and waving.
    Originally posted by Doc N
    What made it impossible to get onto the verge, was it too muddy etc? If that's the case then surely this something you should expect when out walking in the countryside in the middle of winter.
    • Doc N
    • By Doc N 19th May 17, 10:54 AM
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    Doc N
    What made it impossible to get onto the verge, was it too muddy etc? If that's the case then surely this something you should expect when out walking in the countryside in the middle of winter.
    Originally posted by neilmcl
    Height of verge, mud, vegetation......a variety of factors. And, to be honest, if you did this every time a vehicle passed it would add a substantial amount of time to the walk.

    It's a question really of whether a pedestrian should remove him or herself from the road every time a vehicle passes (and some do do that) or whether a driver should occasionally slow down when passing a pedestrian, or, very occasionally, actually stop for a few seconds if there's another vehicle approaching as well.
    • Strider590
    • By Strider590 19th May 17, 11:13 AM
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    Strider590
    Height of verge, mud, vegetation......a variety of factors. And, to be honest, if you did this every time a vehicle passed it would add a substantial amount of time to the walk.

    It's a question really of whether a pedestrian should remove him or herself from the road every time a vehicle passes (and some do do that) or whether a driver should occasionally slow down when passing a pedestrian, or, very occasionally, actually stop for a few seconds if there's another vehicle approaching as well.
    Originally posted by Doc N
    I think pedestrians shouldn't have to move, if they do it's "nice".....

    However, I do think they should not be walking with their back to approaching cars, with cars becoming quieter every year and electric vehicles becoming more prevalent in general, it's something they need to take on board, especially if they're going to walk along a country lane with their dog on one of those stupidly long leads.
    Having the last word isn't the same as being right.......

    "Never confuse education with intelligence"
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