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back to article Road deaths spark crackdown on jaywalking texter menace

Cops in Fort Lee have fined 117 pedestrians in a fortnight for jaywalking while engrossed in their smartphone screens - after three people died by wandering into traffic. So far this year officers have warned 575 citizens in the New Jersey borough that they risked, apart from death, an $85 (£52) ticket for strolling into traffic …

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Anonymous Coward

Darwin rules

Fuck'em. Survival of the least stupid is important for the species...this is just a natural filter in process.

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Re: Darwin rules

That's all very well, but its rather hard on the innocent driver who has to go through life with the image of the gene pool no-contributor bouncing off their vehicle...

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Devil

Re: Re: Darwin rules

Wouldn't bother me one bit Jimbo. The sooner the gene pool is purged of idiots like this the better.

Remember...there are no lifeguards at the gene pool.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Darwin rules

Sounds good to me.

Now if only the UK's Met police would start handing out some tickets to the cyclists who seem to spend even less time looking where they are going than these iZombie pedestrians.

Only yesterday I almost put one over the bonnet of my car as I pulled away at a green light... Along he came, from the right (where he'd obviously jumped an orange or red light) and was looking over his right shoulder the whole time when it might have been wise to be paying attention to the slab of steel pulling out of the junction in front of him from the left. Luckily one of us was paying attention.

If I rode my motorbike with that level of care in London I'd be dead within a week.

I'm sure that within the month there will be another heart wrenching story about a father of 2 killed on his bicycle on the way to/from a charity fund-raiser, but it's getting harder and harder for me to feel much sympathy for the cyclist. Sure there are some shocking drivers out there, but they're not the ones who will end up on the slab. So please, pedal pushers, for f*ck's sake try to pay attention! To pinch a phrase from the motorcycle world - treat everyone on the road as if they are a f*cking idiot out to kill you, because the invariably are.

Queue flames from 100% if El Reg cyclists, who have never ever ever done anything but follow the highway code by the letter.

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Re: Darwin rules

I can't wait to see how they twist this to be God's will and part of intelligent design.

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Re: Darwin rules

Even God has to do production testing and expects the occasional failure.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Darwin rules

Yawn....

There's a percenatage of inept cyclists, there's a percentage of inept car drivers - and horror of horrors there's a percentage of inept motorcyclists as well. The trouble with motorcyclists is that the the menaces are in a majority. I'll gladly do as you say and treat you as a f*cking idiot, but it's because my experience leads me to believe that there's a significant chance that you are a f*cking idiot.

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Re: Darwin rules

As a cyclist, I quite agree that there's a lot of awful cyclists out there. Last Friday I had no fewer than three of them cut me up or pull out without warning when I was cycling home.

I tried to explain to my missus that the fine for pulling into traffic without looking should be a limb, but she thought that was harsh.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Darwin rules

Oi!

Where do cyclists come into the article?

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WTF?

Re: Darwin rules

@ItsNotMe

OK so you've never made a fuck up and got a second chance at something? What a perfect little life you must lead, you smug bastard!

I fell out of a moving car when I was 5 years old, it was only doing 20mph and my Mum panic liked crazy and I had to stay in hospital overnight. Perhaps she should have just said, "Sorry, no lifeguards on duty son, too bad!" and left me to bleed to death by the side of the road? We both learned valuable lessons that day. That was back in the early 70's and she became a serious campaigner for the compulsory wearing of seat belts and I learned not to be so bloody stupid.

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Vic
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Re: Darwin rules

> The trouble with motorcyclists is that the the menaces are in a majority.

This is not true.

Sadly, many car drivers feel the need to "educate" motorcyclists, despite not actually knowing what thay are talking about...

Vic.

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Paris Hilton

Re: Darwin rules

THATS NOT TRUE NOT EVRYONE IS A STINKING GENIUS LIKE ME AND YOU SOME PEOPLE ARE JUST NOT SMART AND NEED OUR PROTECTION

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Re: Darwin rules

"The trouble with motorcyclists is that the the menaces are in a majority"

Policeman related to me during my advanced test.. he was sat there stationary at lights when a car he had overtaken caught him up then started pushing his bike forward repeatedly with the front of his car. Unfortunately most of us aren't able to dive off our machines and arrest the tossers.

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Thumb Up

Re: Darwin rules

If you read any cycling forum RLJers are despised, lowest of the low, scum of the earth second only to pavement pansies. Why? Not because they ever do much damage (except maybe to themselves) but because they give the rest of the cycle-hating car drivers an excuse to hate us.

Doesn't matter that a lot more of us (esp out in sticksville away from London) do obey the law when out on the road; one twunt doing a RLJ instantly puts all of us in there along with murders, rapists & paedophiles.

Me? I'd string em up, or have the police fine them on a par with similar offences committed by a driver. Personally I enjoy stopping at lights and baffling drivers who expect me to sail through regardless.

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Facepalm

@The Fuzzy Wotnot

"I fell out of a moving car when I was 5 years old,..."

Must explain your current state of mind then. Fell on your head did you?

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Re: Re: Darwin rules

Cyclists can come badly if colliding with a wandering phone user.

I would suggest the use of an Air Zounds horn but the happy wanderers tend to freeze like rabbits in a spotlight.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Darwin rules

Re: I can't wait to see how they twist this to be God's will and part of intelligent design...

Well, In the beginning we were created as being genetically perfect, more or less, by our alien overlord.

Then, as you might know, over a longer period of time DNA breaks down and there are errors, which results in crap cyclists, disease, mental health issues, ConDem MPs, watching Corrie and Deadenders, etc, etc.

The reason that our creator allows this to happen is because we chose to essentially stick up two fingers to him and go on our own. So here we are a few thousand years later in the cesspit that we have created all by ourselves. Good innit?

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Paris Hilton

Re: Darwin rules

Cyclists can come badly if colliding with a wandering phone user.

I think you need to use a Paris icon with that statement.

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Windows

Cyclists can come badly if colliding with a wandering phone user.

Other way round in my case. I was (legally*) riding on the footpath, and saw a tosser on his mobile, leave his car, and walk to the parking ticket machine. OK so far. Still on his mobile, he walks to the car, opens the door, ticket on dash, and locks car. By this time I was about 20 metres away, unbelievably said tosser walks *backward*, straight across my path. BANG!! I kept my balance, he went flying, his mobile bouncing off the bike, and land onto the pavement just in front of my wheels. Sickening crunch, I didn't even bother to stop. "That'll teach the fuc*ker!!!"

*In Finland, it's certainly inadvisable - if not illegal(?) - to ride on the road if there's a suitable footpath nearby.

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Boffin

Re: Darwin rules

> The trouble with motorcyclists is that the the menaces are in a majority.

BALDERDASH!

From the Department of Transport:

* * * * *

4.1 Right of way violations

Of the total cases, 681 (38%) involve ROWVs. However, less than 20% of these involve a motorcyclist who rated as either fully or partly to blame for the accident. The majority of motorcycle ROWVaccidents have been found to be primarily the fault of other motorists.

This is an even higher level of ‘non-blameworthiness’ in ROWVaccidents than that observed in other in-depth studies, e.g. Hurt et al. (1981) The majority of ROWVs occur at T-junctions, which are three times as common as roundabouts or crossroads. This finding is in accordance with the work of Hole, Tyrell and Langham (1996), who found that the majority of such accidents occurred at ‘uncontrolled’ (i.e. no stop light or sign with only give-way markings and/or signs

present) T-junctions in urban environments.

When these cases are examined, it can be seen that the most common failure of other drivers in motorcycle accidents is a failure in the continuity of their observation of the road scene. Over 65% of ROWV accidents where the motorcyclist is not regarded as to blame involve a driver who somehow fails to see a motorcyclist who should be in clear view, and, indeed, frequently is in view to witnesses or other road users in the area. Failures of observation that involve drivers failing to take account of restricted views of one kind or another, and failing to judge the approach speed and/or distance of a motorcyclist, are not included in this category.

Sometimes, accident-involved drivers in motorcycle accidents fail to see riders even when they are verifiably using visibility aids, such as daytime running lights and high-visibility protective clothing. This occurs in over 12% of such cases (but the level of use of these aids to visibility is felt to be under-reported by police).

* * * * *

http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20110509101621/http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/roadsafety/research/rsrr/theme5/indepthstudyofmotorcycleacc.pdf

"Sorry Mate, I Didn't See you" really means "Sorry Mate, I Didn't Bother to LOOK Properly"!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Air Zounds horn

Worth a try. Perhaps the state of their underwear afterwards would give them cause to reflect the next time they text&walk.

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Re: innocent driver

> rather hard on the innocent driver who has to go through life with the image of the gene pool no-contributor bouncing off their vehicle..

It's the US, so only a matter of time before such a driver sues the deceased's estate to soothe the distress caused.

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Re: Darwin rules

Good example from my past. A friend was riding her motorcycle along the road, sunny day, headlight on, wearing a shiny silver-blue one-piece bikers suit, with a fluorescent yellow "Sam Brown" belt on. Car pulled out of a side road straight into her.

Driver's excuse? "I was dazzled by all the reflective gear you were wearing". This was followed by "you must have been going far too fast" - my friend was riding a 50cc limited bike, incapable of doing more than the 30mph limit.

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MJI
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Re: Cyclist

We don't hate you, a lot of us even pedal around ourselves occasionally.

BUT I agree string up RLJs and chavs on bikes.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Darwin rules

Forget the Darwin awards - I think we need to start a 'King Lear re-enactment award' just for the 'bear exit' scene :-)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Darwin rules

More than 50% of the motorcyclists I encounter (ie, the majority), are selfish, rude and impatient. Whether they are the cause of more or less blameworthy accidents is neither here nor there. The majority are still selfish, rude and impatient.

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Re: Darwin rules

"More than 50% of the motorcyclists I encounter (ie, the majority)"

Or do you mean the ones that you *notice* and remember? You probably don't even notice or remember the ones who are riding responsibily and safely.

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Re: Darwin rules (AC 15th at 11:27)

For me, I'll say that roughly 90% of the pedal cyclists I encounter ignore road signs, traffic lights, and the rules of the road in general; they are often pretty ill-mannered and obnoxious too, jeering at people they have inconvenienced or harmed by their rotten behaviour. If all you can say about mortorcyclists is that "more than 50%" are rude and impatient I guess you encounter far nicer motorcyclists than I do pedal cyclists. Of course car drivers are pretty bad too - a lot will deliberately drive at pedestrians when there is no footway, waving at them to get off the road (presumably to try to walk along the tope of a hedge that won't take their weight). I personally think motorcyclists are generally the most polite and patient of road users, although it's more than half a century since I was last on a motorbike.

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Re: Darwin rules

Oooh Fuzzy, you're waaay too sensitive.

Why is he a smug bastard? Your answer is EXACTLY the point he was making.

YOU learned NOT to be an idiot.

This is the whole point - take responsibility for your own actions. If everyone did that there would certainly be far fewer accidents in the world, but nevertheless, accidents will still happen despite the best of intentions.

"At least they didn't want to make a new law."

No, but I doubt that fining the idiot will make any difference to the the offender or the others out there who do this all the time. Witness the last guy's comments.

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Joke

Stupid rule!!

I must be allowed to keep up with the register anywhere, even whilst walking across the <SPLAT>

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Anonymous Coward

Had to break suddenly just the other day

... to avoid hitting an iSuppository user who walked out in the road in front of me. Darwin rule remains in force

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Headmaster

Re: Had to break suddenly just the other day

Me too. I just fell to pieces.

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Re: Had to break suddenly just the other day

Using break for brake appears to be a 19thC usage. If you look at, say, 19thC railway accident reports they use the ea spelling.

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Facepalm

Re: Had to break suddenly just the other day

Good job we still live in the 19th Century then. Oh wait...we don't.

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Devil

Re: Darwin Rules; also Re: Had to break suddenly just the other day

@AC 14:46 "...iZombie pedestrians.:

@cornz1 "...Podestrians...

Y'know -- if more Android smartphones are sold than iPhones (as Android fans gleefully chortle about whenever the subject comes up) then, without actual numbers being presented, we have to assume that, statistically, the majority of people texting in traffic are DroidDroids rather than iZombies.

@AC13:39 "...iSuppository device...

Is that what one uses when one has a major case of And-rrhoids...?

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Happy

Re: Had to break suddenly just the other day

In the last few weeks had to do an emergency stop twice to avoid hitting a pedestrian, that wasn't a problem people are dicks so you learn to expect and counter them. What pissed me off was they got aggressive about the fact that I didn't send my insurance premiums soaring.

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Facepalm

Re: Had to break suddenly just the other day

Some people think they do: the Tory government is stuck firmly in the Victorian era.

I used to moan about having to avoid people who were texting as they ambled along, until I too received a must-read text which caused me to slip off the kerb and sprain my ankle. Never again.

Also reminds me of how my mum used to complain about the Saturday night drunks clogging up A&E, until she had one lunchtime glass of wine too many and ending up in A&E with all the other drunks. Never again again.

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Unhappy

Offensive

"Although it's an offence in the US"

Walking is practically an offence in the US. Any time I have walked along a road that isn't in a city centre, I have been stopped by a patrol car and they've asked me what I'm doing.

Or maybe I just have a suspicious gait...

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Alert

Re: Offensive

The roads around Eden Prairie in Minnesota horrified me. They have pedestrian controls at junctions but unlike the UK where all motorised traffic stops while pedestrians have their way all that happens in EP is that the road you are crossing is stopped. The side roads are free to go. I don't think there was a separate pedestrian cycle at all.

So at a four way junction (very common) you have to keep an eye out for traffic exiting the junction from a side street.

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Re: Offensive

...just like everywhere else then.

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Think of it as evolution in action.

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Anonymous Coward

re: Think of it as evolution in action.

except that it isn't evolution. Its the opposite of evolution. Its natural selection.

We can see natural selection happening, understand it and reproduce or tinker with it, which makes it pretty good science.

*cough*

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Facepalm

Let them collect their own bloody Darwin award.

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Anonymous Coward

Not just pedestrians

Followed a scooter boy up the hill where I live.

He was getting slower and slower, it's hard to motorcycle when your texting.

I was tempted to give him a playful nudge, but gave him the horn instead.

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Joke

Re: Not just pedestrians

So then he had the horn as well as texting? A bad combination that's sure to lead to a crash

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Trollface

Re: Not just pedestrians

Is that the same guy that had an erection for 2 years because of ridding a motorbike?

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Anonymous Coward

Touch me, Stare me

I blame touchscreen phones. I could tap away on my keyboard phone quite happily without looking at the screen.

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Anonymous Coward

Don't fine them..

Fines serve no purpose instead remove and crush the phone.

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Joke

They are called "mobstacles"

The idiots who walk at half speed or slower while gabbling or texting, usually in narrow places where you can't walk around them.

Oh, and...

Fuss, fuss... Drivers might or might not text with *alacrity*, which is largely a function of speed, but certainly do it with *impunity*.

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