Motorcycle Forums banner
1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
86 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Today was almost my day. I came too close to eating it in traffic. It's a common situation, one as riders we are exposed to everyday- Guy turning left out of a business going across 4 lanes of traffic and a median. He never saw me- until I was stopped inches from his door.

I've been a rider for over 20 years. I've taken all the MSF courses, basic and advanced. So- I fancied myself a pretty-cool rider in all situations. I've made a few good runs on track day, I've competed in hare scrambles, and once when younger cleared a triple. As much as i'd like to say "hurray for me for not eating this morning" I recognize what saved me from a hospital visit was more luck than skill.

What I did right:

I was going the speed limit- about 50.
I was scanning far enough ahead to see that the knucklehead never saw me.
I was ready to take action.
i was fully bunkered-up with gear.

What I did wrong:

Object fixated... I just stared at the truck. Never tried to swerve.

For some reason I was more worried about low-siding/high siding than I was about t-boning the truck. The street was wet and I remember thinking "don;t panic brake"

I flipped the guy off even though he was clearly apologetic. i might have yelled at him too.

All-in-all, not very good performance on my part. If I was going just a little faster, I'd be dealing with insurance forms right now.

Folks- I just had a real wake-up call this morning. I've been a lazy rider. All those things I learned in MSF I need to re-visit. I'm sure some of you are ninja's when it comes to riding- so this doesn;t apply to you. But- if you're like me, let this be a reminder.. we really are invisible and everybody wants to kill us.

Ride Safe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,640 Posts
I'd say you did everything right!

You didn't hit anyone, no one hit you and you didn't lose control of the bike.

Sure, there could have been a better outcome, but I'd say you did OK!

Every time I start thinking, "What could I have done to avoid that head-on with that car on the Dragon?"; I force myself to think of something else. I ended up with a shattered forearm and a couple of bruises; a totaled Sprint ST and he totaled his Subaru.

If I'd done anything different, odds are I'd not be typing this.

So, don't get "eat up" with the "coulda-woulda's" and ride!

And, Congratulations!
 

·
Super Duper Mod Man
Joined
·
10,479 Posts
I try to get my head on straight before each ride, and just when you think you can relax a little, a wonderful 'oh shyt' moment kicks you into reality. Glad you made it through, but nothing like seeing your life flash before your eyes to keep you awake at night.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
117 Posts
I'd say you did it just right. Was there some luck involved? Maybe, but it was luck that you made.

Your regret seems to be focused on the fact that you braked rather than swerved. Was swerving even an option? In that situation, you'd have to be able to swerve to the right to go behind him (you wouldn't want to cross ahead of him). But then you'd have to know absolutely for sure that the lane(s) to your right were clear. If you didn't already know that--and you certainly didn't have time to check--braking was your only option.

You also seem to have second thoughts about your mental braking technique. Once you decided to brake, your main concern should have been effective braking. After that decision was made, the biggest controllable danger you faced was brake lockup. At that point you shouldn't worry about T-boning the truck, because it would just distract you. You need to concentrate every neuron on braking well.

Give yourself more credit for what you did right. Speed, awareness, expecting the incursion, and being ready to act are what saved you.
 

·
The Toad
Joined
·
17,458 Posts
I always keep in mind...

I'd say you did it just right. Was there some luck involved? Maybe, but it was luck that you made.

Your regret seems to be focused on the fact that you braked rather than swerved. Was swerving even an option? In that situation, you'd have to be able to swerve to the right to go behind him (you wouldn't want to cross ahead of him). But then you'd have to know absolutely for sure that the lane(s) to your right were clear. If you didn't already know that--and you certainly didn't have time to check--braking was your only option.

You also seem to have second thoughts about your mental braking technique. Once you decided to brake, your main concern should have been effective braking. After that decision was made, the biggest controllable danger you faced was brake lockup. At that point you shouldn't worry about T-boning the truck, because it would just distract you. You need to concentrate every neuron on braking well.

Give yourself more credit for what you did right. Speed, awareness, expecting the incursion, and being ready to act are what saved you.
... that hauling yourself down to the lowest velocity is most important. You can't brake while swerving. So if you've only got a split second to decide than brake as hard as you can. It's better to hit him at 15 mph than to swerve and get clipped at 45 mph.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
421 Posts
I try to get my head on straight before each ride, and just when you think you can relax a little, a wonderful 'oh shyt' moment kicks you into reality. Glad you made it through, but nothing like seeing your life flash before your eyes to keep you awake at night.
My biggest problem. I constantly find my mind wandering and have to physically force it back to concentrate on the task at hand. Maybe I need some Addy or something but I swear, two seconds, that's all it takes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
173 Posts
I am sorry but you are wrong. You CAN brake and swerve at the same time. No, it is not simple. You just have to have practiced it. I practice it all the time, it's called trail braking on the racetrack where you brake AND change direction at the same time. I advocate track days on your street bike to teach you what that old gray mare can really do. Track days and their higher speeds are a great way to learn to deal with those "UH-OH" moments. Better to run off into the dirt when nothing is there to hit than to do it on the street where there are oh-so-many things to hit - none of which are soft and padded. Oh Yeah ATGATT! so if you do impact you have a better chance. Keep you eyes up and your brain engaged and don't override your abilities. (We all do it one time or another! Me included!)

By the way to quote an aviation axiom - Any landing you can walk away from is a successful one. I say the guy did good.
 

·
The Toad
Joined
·
17,458 Posts
Wouldn't be....

I am sorry but you are wrong.
... the first time. Depending on the situation you can swerve but to brake at maximum you need to be going straight. So I guess it comes down to the specific situation and how many options you have available. How much room, etc. I still take reducing velocity as much as possible to be the most important thing you can do.

But you are right. Everyone should practice these sorts of manuvers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
I am a newbie, I realize this, I thank you for your post as it reminds me of things that I need to practice. I congratulate you on realizing that you, very experienced rider, must also from time to time revisit and practice riding skills both the physical and mental. We never know from one moment to the next when our next challenge will come.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
901 Posts
If I'd been in your situation, the only difference would have been that I might have been going slower than you. I don't have a problem riding when the streets are wet, but I do ride a lot slower than when they aren't. And I also would have focused on braking rather than swerving. It would be good to get practice swerving on wet asphalt. Maybe somebody should set up a riding course for that. Of course, I bet there'd be quite a few wipeouts :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Hello. I have been riding over 45 years, been an instructor for the Manitoba Safety Council and riding bikes from the smallest to the largest. What did you do wrong. Possibly a few things. Riding in the wrong tire track, or maybe the wrong lane. Never ride in the left or right lane, meridian/sidewalk lane unless you are setting up for a turn or passing a slower vehicle on their left only. Most drivers these days have no clue as to the proper way to merge into traffic going the other way. Sounds like a big city 4 way either way. He should have gone into the closest lane, or left side lane. That would have given you the next lane to pass or out track him. Only if that lane is available. How many drivers, including yourself always do that, turn into the proper lane as stated in the highway traffic act. . Left lane to the left lane, or right lane to right lane. NOT MANY. It all happens in a second or two. If it had just started raining, the road grease/oil is coming up and the roads are at the worst part of the slippery stage. 20-30 minutes later, you will have better traction on the front and can make lane changes easier. "We" all need reminders occasionally. As far as I'm concerned, you didn't hit him, so you did alright. Your braking was good because you didn't side slide into him and you'll live to ride another day. There are to many variables with what you left out of your statement. But, your still walking and ready to ride. You done good boy.. ootpik
 

·
Aging Cafe` Racer
Joined
·
8,715 Posts
I have wonder what it must be like to ride in a place where this type of incident is unusual enough to take note of. Some sort of two-wheeled paradise, I guess. Maybe someday...
God no sh*t, I guess it's just life in the big city....you get used to braindead cagers. I had some phuk in a Toyota make a lange change into me this morning, I'm a foot away from his door laying on the horn and the dumb ass-hole still didn't notice me untill I was next to his window. I guess I need to shift to drag pipes or D&D's or something. That or start packing....

YouTube - Vigilante Man
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
591 Posts
I just wave in a friendly way now. ****s with their mind. That's if they put down their cell phone long enough to notice.

Of course there's always practicing the weak hand too.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top