Because hearing **** like this once more is never enough - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-16-2011, 11:53 PM Thread Starter
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Because hearing **** like this once more is never enough

Hey folks,

I really wanted to write you this message and I hope it doesn't spook you, but I hope most of all that you take it to heart. I have two uncles, one on my dad's side and one on my mom's. My uncle Deryk has been paralyzed for 21 years because of a motorcycle accident involving a car cutting him and his buddies off on their bikes when they were riding as a group. They were too close to each other and he ended up clipping his fellow rider and close friend. If you're going to be riding in groups you need to make sure you have time to react and your lane position is right. My other uncle is uncle Doug, as of today he is my late uncle because he was killed while riding his 750cc Yamaha cruiser on a back country road. He was an investment banker, loving husband and father of two... more responsible than I could ever imagine myself being (in every possible way!) but that didn't help his visibility on the street or his reaction time to a truck turning left across his lane.

I'm pretty strung out on my own thoughts right now because today I bought my first motorcycle (2011 VEE!). I don't know what I'm going to do as far as my motorcycle career goes but I do know my driving will forever be changed.

Many can testify that I'm a wreckless guy (especially on two wheels!) but man, mark my words... I will never be a dangerous motorcycle rider and I truly hope you never are either.

Take the motorcycle safety course (I did and I learned a lot... but still not enough), wear the gear, and slow down.

All love,
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 02:52 AM
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Thanks for the sharing. Riding is fun but can be dangerous and can be extra dangerous with careless drivers around you. I always watched my rear views for such drivers, and if possible, I'll stay ahead of them or just let them pass and me keeping as far away from them as possible. Then there are those sandy and oil covered roads that can be there when you don't expect it. Yea, slow down and give yourself some time to react.

I've just ordered a chest and rear armor vest as my current jacket does not protect me at those areas. Order from eBay, a steal at USD$33. Free shipping from China.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...K%3AMEWAX%3AIT

Present Ride: Yamaha Super Tenere 2012
Previous Ride:
2011 to 2015 2011 Versys Spark BlackKawasaki Ninja 2010 to 2011 250R 2008 Plasma Blue
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 04:41 AM
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bflan, I'm very sorry for your loss. Your family must be devastated, as well as extremely concerned about your new purchase.

You have described two very common motorcycle accident scenarios. Street riding can be very hazardous and it's easy to blame car drivers for their inattentiveness and/or incompetence. But you have a lot of control over your own safety as well. For me it's about managing space. I don't believe that slowing down is always the right approach, but rather using the performance advantages of a bike to get out of potentially dangerous situations. Bikes can out-accelerate and out-brake anything on 4 wheels, and you can put distance between yourself and danger rather quickly, in many cases. I hope you do lots of reading, followed by lots of practice, because skill development is very important. Best of luck.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 06:33 AM
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Sorry for your losses and the devastation you and your family are enduring.
Take pause to re-evaluate your priorities, your post has made me do this.
Thanks for sharing your grief and posting at this most difficult time for you.
I'll keep you all in my thoughts and prayers, so sorry.

Don't Get Cabin Fever!
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 06:52 AM
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Sorry for your losses. Thank you for the wake up call to those who don't realize that riding is a war zone you patrol everytime you fire up the bike.


If riding is in your blood it will take a lot to keep you from doing it. It is all about minimizing risk. Wearing proper gear. changing the roads and times you ride compared to when you are in a car. reacting to vehicles before something happens.

What this means for me is altering my work schedule so I am not on the road during the normal traffic times. I now am at my workplace at 0600 and will head home by 1500 or wait until 1800 if I can't get out by 1500.
I avoid riding down main roads where the opportunity for cars turning left in front of me is greater.
When on a country lane I watch the approaching vehicles and if we are going to meet at a side road I alter my speed to make sure we don't.
Invest in extra lighting and wear Hi Visibilty clothing when riding in areas where there is traffic.
Install a loud horn, and flashing brake lights. Some areas modulating headlights can be helpful, but in other areas a flashing headlight signals to the guy on the side road that he can proceed so you need to know the customs in the area you ride.

Always try and ride the gap between gangs are cars that naturally occur on the roads. When in traffic on a two lane road match the speed of the vechicle in front of you but stay 4 seconds behind it and you will be amazed the car behind you will get the hint and stay back from you. If they don't you at least have more time to react.

Some good books to read are "proficient motorcycling" by David Hough, and any of his other books. "Total Control" by Lee Parks.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 09:26 AM
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Remember the fallen ones everytime you ride, that might keep from becoming a reckless rider.

And get the best helmet you can afford. Plus all the other safety gear, and wear it all the time. Back protection (nicknamed "turtles" by German riders) offer great protection.

Having years of driving experience sure helps for riding, as you know what to expect.

2008 Kawasaki Versys
1994 Honda NTV 650
1999 Suzuki AN125
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 10:41 AM
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All three of the fundamental universal laws are in evidence.
Cause and effect,
Impermanence,
Interconnectedness.

And don't forget Physics
That's why I say ->

"Respect the Ride if you don't you Won't"
"A man's got to know his limitations"
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 11:17 AM
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The fact that a motorcycle can stop in a shorter distance than a car is a misconception shared by both car drivers and motorcycle riders alike. If you look at reviews from both car and motorcycle magazines you will find that the averages are approximately the same. The test results shown in the magazines are with new tires and do not include reaction time. Reaction time will vary greatly not only between individuals but also can depend upon how alert the person is at any given time. Being tired or having consumed a large meal or a small amount of alcohol will adversely affect your reaction time. When you practice braking you drive at a certain speed and break at a known given point; in an emergency situation your reaction time will be much greater. Fear also plays a part. When practicing braking your brain is concerned with maintaining control while braking as had as possible but in an emergency situation an individual will often clamp on the brakes to hard causing a lose of control and actually either increasing the stopping distance or dropping the bike.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mt. Versuvius View Post
bflan, I'm very sorry for your loss. Your family must be devastated, as well as extremely concerned about your new purchase.

You have described two very common motorcycle accident scenarios. Street riding can be very hazardous and it's easy to blame car drivers for their inattentiveness and/or incompetence. But you have a lot of control over your own safety as well. For me it's about managing space. I don't believe that slowing down is always the right approach, but rather using the performance advantages of a bike to get out of potentially dangerous situations. Bikes can out-accelerate and out-brake anything on 4 wheels, and you can put distance between yourself and danger rather quickly, in many cases. I hope you do lots of reading, followed by lots of practice, because skill development is very important. Best of luck.
+1 Well said IMO

Many times in this life it's the greater the risk, the greater the reward.
Motorcycles have broken my body and my heart many times. I once watched a 19 year old boy die in a field of dirt and I watched his dad watch him die. Ride to live, live to ride.

I have one word for beginning street riders: ride invisible (wait! that's.... )
Anticipate that everybody who can turn left in front of you will turn left in front of you...ride invisible.
Anticipate that everybody who can pull out in front of you will pull out in front of you...ride invisible.
Get to the "safe spot," whatever it takes; sometimes passive, sometimes aggressive.

Blessings and

Ride to live, live to ride.
2009 Kawasaki Versys
2010 Yamaha YZ 250F
2008 Honda CRF 450
2006 Honda CR 250R
I've owned a Maico.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-17-2011, 04:17 PM
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Sorry to hear about your very unfortunate situation. I think everyone here at least knows someone who knows someone who had a run-in on a motorcycle.

I recently helped myself and attended a Stayin Safe training tour and they talk a lot about methods and tactics for avoiding exactly these types of situations. http://www.stayinsafe.com/ End result is I feel comfortable riding and like I have some more tools in my toolbox to reduce my risk while still being able to enjoy riding my bike..

E
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 01:43 PM
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'...today I bought my first motorcycle (2011 VEE!)'

'...using the performance advantages of a bike to get out of potentially dangerous situations'

'Invest in extra lighting and wear Hi Visibilty clothing when riding in areas where there is traffic. Install a loud horn, and flashing brake lights..'

All good advice, especially these which warrant repeating. And the 'out manouverability' statement could have come right from the OR driver's manual-I used it in a defense of a ticket once.

Is this your 1st street bike?? If I were King, I'd make everyone own a dirt bike 1st and be able to ride at least competently around a an MX course one lap to get the their street license. That's my advice also to you-get on some dirt and learn to handle that before the tarmac.

And condolences-I lost my dad(not to a bike though) a few weeks ago so I commiserate.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 06-19-2011, 09:05 AM
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Training will stop a reckless person, they will still be reckless. They have to have a changed out look to stop be reckless.

Mark
_____________________________
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11 H-D V-Rod, 13 H-D Ultra

Retired Eagle driver, Long Live the Eagle
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