A co-worker found this video created by Transport for London (TfL) on MSN.com Monday. I think it’s a clever angle aimed at increasing bicycle awareness. They have another good pedestrian safety ad here and two motorcycle safety ads here and here.
A passer-by asks you for directions. As you talk to him, two workmen walk between you carrying a door. In a flash the passer-by switches places with one of the workmen, and you are left giving directions to a different person. Do you think you would notice?
Researchers at Harvard University played this trick on some unsuspecting people and over 50 per cent failed to spot the change.
This phenomenon is known as “change blindness” – only a tiny fraction of all the information going into your brain enters your consciousness. People often fail to see a change in their surroundings because their attention is elsewhere.
Even stranger, if you are concentrating on something, you can become blind to other events that you would normally notice. This “inattention blindness” is possibly the reason why motorists collide with cyclists.
Just as it is important for road users to keep an eye out for cyclists, cyclists must also take steps to ensure they are seen by motorists.
Australia also has loads of edgy anti-speeding and other safety ads. Perhaps I’ll post a few of those soon.