Jaywalking in Germany - Dangers and possible fines

176 posts in this topic

10 minutes ago, yourkeau said:

No, you don't. You don't have any traffic lights in your small city and you are free to cross the road everywhere. That is not jaywalking.

 

That is Orwell style advise. If I were I dictator who can decide what people can do and what they cannot, I would ban the cars. That would make people safe. For both Brits and Germans "do not get drunk" is equivalent to "do not breath".

 

I don't understand this warrior approach. Is it really difficult to wait for green that you'd rather die than follow the rules?

I'm confused, why do you think there is no traffic lights here?

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8 minutes ago, naberlin said:

??  I guess I'd call it Orwellian to attach too much importance to people following rules without question rather than using their brains.  

 

You should never ever "use your brain" when safety is concerned, you should follow the rules. Because in crisis situation your brain doesn't work properly. You can be drunk, you can be sick or simply embarrased by bad news you just received: in all these situations your brain should rest, not work and you should follow the rules automatically. That was my point.

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But when there is no crisis, my mind is A1 OK, thanks, and the street is clear and the lights are red, crossing is a tiny risk.

 

I still wouldn't do it here because of the issues of the StVO, liability, and Sod's Law dictating that the unexpected will happen and land you with a big bill.

 

In the UK I don't because I have been reprogrammed by living here. :huh:

 

I do watch with nostalgia as other people take advantage of their senses and decision making skills to cross the road a minute earlier, though... other times I mutter about lights, children, road safety and responsibility...

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OK, but I can't disagree more--I think that some people take the "don't jaywalk" thing far too seriously.  

     A couple of weeks ago I was riding my bike home from work and came across that intersection where the pedestrian crossing was open but on both sides of the pedestrian crossing there were 1.5 meter tall red and white barriers for construction, totally blocking the road for cars.  

     And yet people were standing on the side walk waiting for the inanimate object to give them permission to walk.  Frankly, I find such behavior rather bizarre.

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Never use your brain when safety is involved???

I nominate that as today's ridiculous statement.

 

You need your brain to breath. Your brain never rests, and an intelligent assessment will give you the best way out of danger rather than reptilian fight or flight.

 

@yourkeau You seem fixated with jaywalking beyond all reason. You seem to consider it a horrible crime, and the leading cause of adult fatalities.

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14 minutes ago, naberlin said:

OK, but I can't disagree more--I think that some people take the "don't jaywalk" thing far too seriously.  

     A couple of weeks ago I was riding my bike home from work and came across that intersection where the pedestrian crossing was open but on both sides of the pedestrian crossing there were 1.5 meter tall red and white barriers for construction, totally blocking the road for cars.  

     And yet people were standing on the side walk waiting for the inanimate object to give them permission to walk.  Frankly, I find such behavior rather bizarre.

In my town (almost nobody jaywalks, being a foreigner or not) I haven't observed such behavior. More, there was once a situation when traffic lights showed red to everyone for a long time. People and cars just started crossing slowly with care. So you see: we don't jaywalk, yet our brains are ok :)

 

16 minutes ago, MadAxeMurderer said:

Never use your brain when safety is involved???

I nominate that as today's ridiculous statement.

 

You need your brain to breath. Your brain never rests, and an intelligent assessment will give you the best way out of danger rather than reptilian fight or flight.

 

@yourkeau You seem fixated with jaywalking beyond all reason. You seem to consider it a horrible crime, and the leading cause of adult fatalities.

Come on, you understood what I meant. I'm not at the physiology class here, am I?

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Simple situation: you get a call "Oma in Krankenhaus", you run to Krankenhaus and the whole route you only think about your Oma. In that situation your brain takes control and does what you usually do, i.e. if you don't jaywalk your brain will stop you at the traffic light no matter what. If you jaywalk a lot, your brain will ignore traffic lights but you will not pay attention to cars, you are thinking about your Oma only. The result can be you landing in Krankenhaus as a patient, not visitor.

 

P.S. In the same situation for drivers it is recommended not to drive at all, ask someone or call a taxi.

 

 

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8 minutes ago, yourkeau said:

Simple situation: you get a call "Oma in Krankenhaus", you run to Krankenhaus and the whole route you only think about your Oma. In that situation your brain takes control and does what you usually do, i.e. if you don't jaywalk your brain will stop you at the traffic light no matter what. If you jaywalk a lot, your brain will ignore traffic lights but you will not pay attention to cars, you are thinking about your Oma only. The result can be you landing in Krankenhaus as a patient, not visitor.

Your logic is a bit circular--you say that in emergency situations your brain follows ingrained rules, such as (for you) not to jaywalk.

 

But for someone else, their ingrained rule might be "don't walk in front of a car regardless of what the light says".  I don't know why you think that your ingrained rule would be more likely to be followed than someone else's?

 

It sure seems like you end up at the same result to me.

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23 minutes ago, naberlin said:

But for someone else, their ingrained rule might be "don't walk in front of a car regardless of what the light says".  I don't know why you think that your ingrained rule would be more likely to be followed than someone else's?

Because this is what happens in practice: two jaywalkers in the hospital during first two days at Oktoberfest. 

If I'm wrong, then show this with counter examples, i.e. traffic light waiters landing in hospital.

 

Practice can only partly be explained with logic which I tried my best to. When I was in driving school, my instructor told me: Traffic rules are written by blood.

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In my experience as a pedestrian I can tell when the traffic lights are going to turn green for me, because the traffic has already stopped, while I still have red. This is why Germans cross as soon as they have green - the cars have stopped already, even the cars turning right into my path are obliged to give way to me.  If, as a pedestrian, you wait too long to check the traffic, the traffic lights have changed back to red again. Pedestrians don't get much time to cross the bloody road on green, that's why. Kita kids are taught how to cross the road at traffic lights, and they are taught to watch the traffic and the lights simultaneously as I know from experience taking part in these lessons. They are not taught to be sheeple as is propagated here so often. 

 

As a pedestrian walking with dogs, I'm mostly positively impressed by so many friendly and considerate drivers seeing me waiting at the roadside to cross (no traffic lights) and they stop, signalling for me to cross the road, which I acknowledge with a smile and a friendly wave. It happens so often. And there's no impatient honking from the drivers behind them either. Apparently, German drivers are taught to have their eyes everywhere.

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1 hour ago, yourkeau said:

If I'm wrong, then show this with counter examples, i.e. traffic light waiters landing in hospital.

I think that you're looking at this from the wrong perspective--so two drunk, English (wrong-way-looking) jay walkers are run over.  Does that mean that jay-walking is inherently dangerous?  I think not.

Likewise, there are many activities which are dangerous and yet not banned, even in Germany--eating meat, drinking alcohol, riding motorcycles, sun-bathing--all dangerous in their own way, but not "against the rules".  Googling around a bit, I found that in 2014, 4,884 pedestrians were killed in the US in 2014, presumably many because of jay-walking...but that same year, 4,866 Americans died accidentally in their bathtubs.  Taking a bath thus appears to be about as dangerous as jay-walking, so should we ban baths too?

For whatever reason, Germans (and you in particular) seem to think that jay-walking is very dangerous, but that is a completely arbitrary judgement which overlooks many other equally or more dangerous activities which Germans (actually everyone) seem to have no problem with.  That of course is their and your prerogative, but please don't try to convince the rest of us that jaywalking is more dangerous than many of life's other activities.

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53 minutes ago, naberlin said:

Likewise, there are many activities which are dangerous and yet not banned, even in Germany--eating meat, drinking alcohol, riding motorcycles, sun-bathing--all dangerous in their own way, but not "against the rules".  Googling around a bit, I found that in 2014, 4,884 pedestrians were killed in the US in 2014, presumably many because of jay-walking...but that same year, 4,866 Americans died accidentally in their bathtubs.  Taking a bath thus appears to be about as dangerous as jay-walking, so should we ban baths too?

You suggest that jay-walking is as essential for people as alcohol and meat, but I disagree. It is not.

Sure, we do risk our lives for activities we consider essential part of our life. Is jaywalking such an important activity? Is running red light as important as wearing hijab for a Muslim woman? Then indeed my arguments make no sense.

 

But if the answer is "no" then: you still can die in bathtub, or in motorcycle accident or via alcohol intoxication. But you won't die when crossing the street. You have one less reason to die and this is achieved so easily: by waiting 30 seconds at the traffic light.

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11 minutes ago, yourkeau said:

You suggest that jay-walking is as essential for people as alcohol and meat, but I disagree. It is not.

Sure, we do risk our lives for activities we consider essential part of our life. Is jaywalking such an important activity?

Well, that's the point, isn't it?  You obviously have your personal opinion about what is important to you and what is not.  Many people do not drink alcohol, eat meat, or ride motorcycles, but many people do so--the point is that it is their personal choice, as it should be.  While you might not consider jay-walking very "necessary", I don't consider it dangerous, so the limited utility is not offset by significant danger.  

Personally I ride a motorcycle and consider it much more dangerous than jay-walking.  I also consider riding my bicycle in Berlin much more dangerous than jaywalking.  And needless to say, I avoid baths altogether (in favor of showers).

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I'm vegetarian so don't care about eating meat.

 

OMG Do you realise you could be eaten by a shark if you swim in the sea??? Nobody should go swimming. In fact swimming should be illegal so save us.

 

The fact that swimming is even less risky than jaywalking should be irrelevant. 

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On one hand, it's personal choice. On the other hand, I won't be able to sleep good at night if I ever run any jay-walker on my car. The fact that I'm not liable won't help me to sleep. And if have choice to kill myself by diverting a car against the wall, so a jaywalker survives, I will do it. So, this is choice but not really personal.

 

 

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On 02/06/2016, 18:38:14, yourkeau said:

I don't understand jaywalkers. The only excuse that you in a so big hurry that you can't wait is that you either work for police,  emails while waiting at red light. Why in the world would a man jaywalk?

I have 'jaywalked' on all continents, I am a mature adult and I don't need a machine to tell me when it is safe to cross the road.

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57 minutes ago, rodisi said:

I have 'jaywalked' on all continents, I am a mature adult and I don't need a machine to tell me when it is safe to cross the road.

Ever cross a Cambodian road? Lanes within lanes within lanes. My road crossing skills doubled during that trip.

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4 hours ago, rodisi said:

I have 'jaywalked' on all continents, I am a mature adult and I don't need a machine to tell me when it is safe to cross the road.

Maybe you don´t need a law either, but it is in effect nevertheless. And there lies the difference. Seems about time they make traffic law part of a mandatory integration course for those from jaywalking nations?:ph34r:

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Road traffic is made of rules, and traffic works because people follow the rules. Jaywalkers are rule breaker and that's what irk people the most. You think you're such a bad ass for jaywalking and getting away with it every time, but you got away with it thanks to other people who abide by the rules and take care of jaywalkers like you. If no one follow traffic rules anymore imagine what a mess of accidents we will have. It's not difficult to do one's part in making safe traffic, including insignificant little things such as waiting for the green man before crossing the road. 

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5 hours ago, desdemona said:

Road traffic is made of rules, and traffic works because people follow the rules. Jaywalkers are rule breaker and that's what irk people the most. You think you're such a bad ass for jaywalking and getting away with it every time, but you got away with it thanks to other people who abide by the rules and take care of jaywalkers like you. If no one follow traffic rules anymore imagine what a mess of accidents we will have. It's not difficult to do one's part in making safe traffic, including insignificant little things such as waiting for the green man before crossing the road. 

I completely disagree with your statements.

 

Yes, to some degree road traffic is made up of rules, but to a large degree it is made up of common sense and simple awareness.  You seriously think that the roads will descend into chaos if jaywalking is common?  Look at the US, where jay-walking is very common and yet as many pedestrians die as people die in the bathtub.  Chaos?  I think not.  I lived for many years in Moscow, where drivers are hardly known for abiding by the rules.  But you know what?  There is no chaos there either--millions of people commute to work every day in their cars, for one simple reason--each vehicle is controlled by a sentient, aware, rational person that wants to avoid accidents.  And to a remarkable degree, they do.

 

Not surprisingly, you seem to have a fundamental misconception about jay-walking--I don't "get away with it thanks to other people who abide by the rule and take care of jaywalkers like you"--do you know why?  Because when I jaywalk there are no cars in sight, so no one to "take care of me".  You and yorkeau seem to think that jay-walking involves dashing into a street full of traffic and dodging between cars, but I'm not sure where you got that fanciful idea?  For responsible, sober adults, jaywalking means that if you look in the direction of travel and can't see a car for a few hundred meters, or at all, then it is OK to saunter across the street.  Please explain how that it dangerous?  

 

I posted above about a recent incident in which some people were standing waiting for the walk sign despite the fact that the road on both sides of the pedestrian crossing was blocked off by large traffic barriers.   How is that anything other than complete abdication of your mental faculties?

 

You say that "Jaywalkers are rule breaker and that's what irk people the most"--that appears to be the crux of the matter; no matter how safe it is, it just appears that you and others just cannot abide other people breaking any rule.   I honestly don't get it...

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