Hey I think you are a good writer..I am looking forward to it. You know I am just kidding about Chicago.. right? Two guys that work for me are from there via University of Illionois and NorthWestern .. They couldn't wait to rub in the Bears win on monday..Bears look like the real deal .. Well back to work.. My group just doubled in size. I love sparing with you keeps me sharp.
Every time I read about a motorcyclist getting killed, especially a skilled rider that takes the proper precautions, I am reminded that we constantly take a serious risk to ride. I would certainly say that the proper kit is critical to survival. To me, the biggest part of staying alive is anticipation and allowing enough space to avoid the inevitable. Having the necessary avoidance skills doesn't hurt either. But there is always the chance that something will happen so fast that the best rider on the planet won't have time to react with the result being from minor road rash, to some permanent disability, to a veggie, to THE END.
It's pretty scary how vulnerable we are. Even more amazing is that so many "riders" refuse to acknowledge these dangers. They don't know avoidance maneuvers, and if they were taught them, don't practice them on a regular basis (absolutely necessary to make them work when you need them the most). In Florida (no helmet required), my guess is 75-85% don't wear them. Saw a guy yesterday: no helmet, tank top, cut off shorts, and rubber flip-flops. People in their 40s-70s should be too old to believe "it can't happen to me." All this does confirm that the majority of motorcycle owners are a pretty stupid lot. Especially when they don't wear any protective equipment to join their riding buddies at the bar for a few brews.
The above is pretty much a waste of verbiage because it won't change a damn thing. Congratulations to those who wear the proper equipment, constantly seek out ways to improve their riding skills, and practice them until instinctive and reactive. Talk about a minuscule groups of elite riders that really give a damn.....
I don't think it's quite that black and white. Accidents are going to happen. If I were killed by someone who genuinely just didn't see me, hopefully they would feel bad enough as it was, I wouldn't want them blindly tossed in jail. However if the person was drunk, high, behaving recklessly, or allowing themselves to be distracted by a herd of children or cell phone, then in that case they can sit in a cell for awhile.
I guess it comes down to asking, "Was this driver being a jackass?" Obviously it can't be used in court but it's one of those things that everyone on the road instantly recognizes when they see it, unless they're the ones comitting acts of jackassery.
My point was - people are killed in traffic crashes every day; pedestrians, passengers, et. al. Not just Motorcyclists. And the perpetrators of most of these are just plain ignorant of what they are doing - right up to the moment of the crash.
Remorse doesn't help the dead, and seldom helps the next victim.
We are hooked on a dangerous sport. We need to deal with it. Cars don't see you because you're small and don't compute as a danger. Even Motorcyclists will ocassionally lose a bike in their 'blind spot'. You can avoid a certain number of accidents by skill alone, but luck, and hyperawarness of just how vulnerable you are have to be in the mix too.
I drove today because of the promise of 30 mph winds, some things I don't mess with. I was cut off more than once by someone not using turn signals, beating my + 10 to exit in a 1/4 mile or basically not giveing a fqck for anybody else. I think I'm safer on my "Green" bike.