Watch yer bobber!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Wayne, Jun 28, 2018.

  1. Wayne

    Wayne Well-Known Member

    I witnessed this entire accident as I was at the stop sign. The biker was riding slow and properly, the van rolled though the stop sign and squarely hit the biker. It just goes to show that you can be as careful as can be, but you still have to watch out for the other drivers. Biker seemed okay but went to hospital with a sore leg and stiff neck. Bike lost a foot peg, shifter, handle bars and rad.
    keith likes this.
  2. Jim C-G

    Jim C-G Active Member

    Keep aware... there is always a more persistent idiot.
    keith likes this.
  3. skibum69

    skibum69 Well-Known Member

    Pay attention
  4. Bob

    Bob Active Member

    As Pogo said: "I have met the enemy and he is us." About five out of six times...
    Collision with reality
    Contributed - May 23, 2019 / 11:00 am | Story: 256876

    By Bill Downey

    There is a huge, and dangerously misleading, misconception at play in the motorcycle world about who's at fault when motorcycle collisions happen.

    To quote the B.C. Coroner's document Aug. 29, 2018 (Motorcyclists Deaths January 2008 t0 July 2018):

    Contributing Factors Summary

    • Analysis of completed investigations from 2008 to 2018 found the following:
    • 57% of motorcyclist deaths involved more than one motor vehicle
    • Motorcyclist speed was contributory to 38% of deaths, and motorcyclist impairment to 34% of deaths. Overall, motorcyclist/motorcycle factors contributed to 70% of deaths.
    • Environmental factors contributed to 23% of deaths, and factors related to other motor vehicles and their drivers contributed to 14%.
    Note: Percentages may sum to more than 100, as one death may have multiple contributing factors.

    Let me be very blunt here. The hard and unblinking truth about motorcycle collisions is that we are the main authors of our own misfortunes.

    Other drivers are not the primary source of the problem.

    Closer reading of the coroner's statistics tell you an even more chilling story than they have articulated:

    • the "Environmental Factors" cited as contributory in 23% of deaths are all, without exception, the responsibility of the rider to identify, plan and equip for, and to prevent from harming them.
    Considered from an informed and carefully researched perspective, 93% of B.C. rider deaths in the past decade were the result of single or multiple rider factors, either wholly or partly.

    I do not subscribe to the long-held belief that drivers do not see or care about motorcyclists as such; driver error and driver behaviours are not specific to the presence or absence of motorcyclists.

    They are, in fact, shared by motorcyclists, who, it should be noted, are predominantly drivers of other vehicles for most of their vehicle trips.

    Contemporary research, led by a SFU researcher, very substantially challenges the presumption that drivers do not see motorcycles, by demonstrating through a series of controlled studies that drivers are at least as sensitive, if not indeed more sensitive, to the presence of motorcyclists than they are to other vehicles.

    The fault is neither perception, nor volition.

    It is instead a judgment error, rooted in the limits to human visual processing: it is extremely difficult for drivers to accurately assess the approach speed of other vehicles, up to and including trains.

    Our initial common error rate can be as high as 50% (i.e. the approaching vehicle assessed to be travelling at 60 km/h may be moving as fast as 90 km/h.

    This is an effect exaggerated by the narrow frontal size, and the location on the road (lane position), of approaching motorcycles.

    This research series (Sager et al) is reported in the Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals annual safety conference proceedings.

    The sad fact is that we have been guided for years in the motorcycle safety world by the exceptionally naive and unquestioning acceptance of two types of essentially nonsensical claims that in other contexts would routinely have been challenged and/or dismissed outright:

    Rider: "I didn't have time to react.”

    You had a clear sightline to an obvious vehicle, which you ought to have known, and a reasonable person in your circumstance would have known, was very likely to cross your intended path of travel.

    You did nothing to protect yourself in advance from that probable hazard until you were immediately upon it, leaving not enough residual time to respond effectively.

    You chose to spend the time you could reasonably have used to protect yourself doing what, precisely?

    • Accelerating toward that hazard?
    • Ignoring it altogether?
    • Directing your attention to some secondary task?
    Extremely basic vehicle operation guidelines require operators to maintain adequate forward attention to identify potential hazards in good time, and to implement commonly known and practiced defensive strategies immediately.

    Driver: "I didn't see him, he came out of nowhere.”

    Well, no, he didn't. This isn't Star Wars, and research now confirms that it is not just possible, but actually most probably the case that you did see him.

    You screwed up, because you were wrong about how fast he was approaching. Grow up and acknowledge your error.

    On the first point, the rider involvement, a close reading of the various motorcycle crash causation studies since 1979 (see, for instance, "Select Risk Factors Associated with Causes of Motorcycle Crashes, NTSB, 2018) typically reveals that riders panic in situations of preventable collisions, and make them worse.

    Evidence consistently shows that riders either make no apparent effort to avoid a crash, or make contributory errors in their responses (incorrect response, or failed attempt at correct response is the typical profile).

    That means that riders tend to throw their (often inadequately equipped) bikes on the ground or into other vehicles in circumstances where crashes were neither inevitable, nor the making of someone else.

    This is precisely the point that the B.C. Coroner’s report identifies:

    • riders crash who are speeding and/or impaired and/or on slippery road surfaces.
    They are often, as well, unlicensed and/or inexperienced.

    Other drivers contribute in some instances to the problem, but it begins in most cases with rider error — note the very high frequency (43%) of single vehicle motorcycle crashes.

    Why we have accepted this blatantly inaccurate testimony from collision-involved drivers and riders, who in many cases we ought well to have known were making it up from false memory typical of trauma situations, remains a mystery to me.

    Naivete is the nicest possible explanation, but it seems unlikely to explain such a broad phenomenon.

    The problem is that this weak level of analysis has been reported unquestioningly by the popular media, and has been used for decades to inform not just rider training, but also public policy, with the net result that generations of riders have been abandoned by safety regulators.

    These regulators could long ago have acted on other available guidance from sound research and epidemiological analyses to ensure that:

    • motorcycles are more appropriately and adequately equipped at higher mandatory minimum standards
    • more adequate and effective traffic safety enforcement was in place to address the very well-documented issues with speed, impairment, and licensing.
    I do know, however, we won’t be able to ignore the hard facts of the motorcycle safety problem.


    Because as we move into the evolving environment of more refined and effective collision-scene analysis informed by on-board Event Data Recorders, external monitors such as intersection safety cameras, and by increasingly refined Naturalistic Driving/Riding Studies, the evidence will be over-whelming.

    These real-time tools and techniques are not subject to the substantial flaws of witness accounts, and are much less easily ignored in favour of the long-preferred "he said/she said" game.

    We have to grow up sooner or later, stop trying to create artificial and dangerous divides between road user groups, and start to use the scientific evidence to create actual road safety measures for all road users.

    Bill Downey, an instructor at Kelowna and District Safety Council, is an avid biker who starting riding as a teen.
  5. RossKean

    RossKean Active Member

    For the most part I agree, but...
    The article appears to say that motorcyclists are overwhelmingly less careful than automobile drivers. I suspect that the statistics would be similar if you substituted car for motorcycle - perhaps worse.

    The fact remains that there is a disproportionately larger number of motorcycle accidents (per km driven) compared to auto accidents. What's more is the fact that an accident resulting in a minor bit of damaged bodywork with a car could result in serious injury or death on a motorcycle.

    Biker statistics are skewed by a number of factors.
    • Many motorcyclists, especially younger ones, ride bikes primarily for the thrill. They deliberately push the envelope. All I have to do is sit out on my deck any summer evening and listen to the lightly-muffled cruisers blatting away from stop signs or the high-powered sport bikes blasting through the gears on the highway to understand that everyone isn't like me.
    • Many of the same group are more likely to drink before riding although this is sadly not limited to motorcyclists but bike outcomes are invariably worse.
    • For many, motorcycle riding is a social thing and peer pressure (or trying to out-ride the other guys) often gets bikers into trouble.
    • Motorcycle performance (even Harleys) is incredible relative to most cars!
    • Many motorcyclists are woefully inexperienced! Quite a few years ago, I took the MSF course to learn how to ride a bike. After three days of riding a 125 cc bike around a parking lot (never getting out of second gear), I had a 20 minute practice session with, and then took my test on a 650 cc bike so I could get the big bike endorsement. That (apparently) made me fully qualified to ride any motorcycle on any road in North America under any sort of conditions. Probably a good thing that I didn't do this as a teenager!
    • Riding a motorcycle is more difficult than driving a car!! All other things being equal, a small lapse in attention can result in a bike accident. Running two car wheels off the shoulder of the road might make you clench your butt as you curse yourself and steer back into your lane in your car. The motorcyclist is far more likely to end out in the ditch.
    • Balance is a big thing - large number of mishaps with low speed maneuvering in parking lots and city streets although they are rarely fatal.
    • Poor traction conditions are vastly more dangerous for bikes - sand or wet.
    The author is correct in saying that motorcyclists are largely responsible for their statistics (as are car drivers). It is up to the individual rider to hone his or her skills to minimize personal risk. It is also up to the individual to understand that they ARE at risk and in the event of a car-bike interaction, they are very likely to lose even if the accident isn't (technically) their fault!
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2019
    Trash likes this.
  6. HunterSon

    HunterSon Active Member

    While anecdotal evidence holds little weight, my personal experience says that I have avoided many potential accidents because I have been aware of other drivers that do not see me (distracted) or act carelessly around me. These non accidents do not make it into the statistics. While driving in my cage I find far less instances where other drivers do not see me.
    Trash likes this.
  7. Trash

    Trash Active Member

    As RossKean stated, I agree with much of the Original Post.
    It was, sadly, a long time before I became an accomplished rider.
    My personal observation is that the vast majority of riders I encounter are definitely not accomplished riders.
    It took a conscious decision for me to start practicing difficult maneuvers in order to master them.
    And, I keep practicing to this day. How many of us practice panic stops? Walking speed figure eights? Rain riding?
    Ultimately, we are the only ones who can keep ourselves safe. Whether another driver sees us or not is largely irrelevant.
    What we do to keep them from hitting us is the only important thing. Another lesson it took me too long to learn was, reacting angrily to being cut off by someone usually put me in a dangerous position by my typical reaction of horn honking and light flashing, distracting me from the real task of safe riding. Maybe it’s advancing age and a overdue dose of wisdom, but these days, any accident avoided is a big “win” in the scheme of things. After all, the old bones are getting brittle, and won’t heal like they used to! ;)
    HunterSon likes this.
  8. skibum69

    skibum69 Well-Known Member

    I'm taking the Streetmasters one day course when I'm at the MOA rally, I figure I'm due for a little training. Being an MOA member I qualify for $250 USD grants to take more training which I hope to do.

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