Kawasaki Versys Forum banner

1 - 20 of 39 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi folks. Just wanting to share a video and get feedback. I was about to go around an SUV when the driver hits the brakes hard and veers to the right. I was on the brakes hard and tried to get around him. I wasn't sure at the time if I hit him, but I can tell from the video that I did. I thought it was likely my fault at the time, but now I'm not sure. This is in California, so lanesplitting is not illegal.

The driver took off, and i told the CHP it was a solo accident. Now I know different.

M right clavicle is broken in two places and will need surgery.

What do you think? All my fault, his fault, or a little of both?

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
269 Posts
It's hard to say. It doesn't look like he crossed the white line. Maybe touched it, but I don't think he crossed it. Which means you struck him in his lane.

I still can't believe he drove off though. It's illegal to leave an accident scene in most (all?) states. You have his plate. Not sure that would help you much though.

I'm curious what you were wearing, and if you had any road rash?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,883 Posts
After watching it 4 times l'm afraid l'd lay the blame on you...
I'm pretty sure the SUV driver did it intentionally. There was no one in front of him, so he had no reason to brake like that. He also didn't signal, nor did he carry on moving into the lane after the poster hit him.
All that said, I agree with you, the poster brought it on himself. I'm also surprised it doesn't happen a lot more frequently than it does. Bikes out there routinely roll the dice running speed differentials way too big with the surrounding traffic. The cars are bound to change lanes unexpectedly from time to time guys. Splitting them at speed is nothing more than playing Russian roulette...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
748 Posts
After watching it 4 times l'm afraid l'd lay the blame on you....BUT:

California Misdemeanor "Hit & Run" Laws | Vehicle Code 20002 vc
The driver of the suv will just claim he never even felt the motorcycle hit him.Good luck in the healing process.If you freeze frame it you will see the driver of the suv hit his brakes pretty early did not look like he braked checked you.Looks like he was on the brakes before you went passed the suv in the right lane.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
...Bikes out there routinely roll the dice running speed differentials way too big with the surrounding traffic. The cars are bound to change lanes unexpectedly from time to time guys. Splitting them at speed is nothing more than playing Russian roulette...
My wife is visiting family in California and was taking the 580 to Sacramento on a Thursday evening in commute traffic. Her first comment to me was that the motorcycle riders are crazy splitting lanes way too fast.

This is of course, anecdotal data, but I know my wife and if this was her first comment to me it either bothered or shocked her. Saddlebag said it correctly, keep the differences in speed within reason.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
16,227 Posts
Very simple. Its the SUV's fault. No reason for them to stop on the freeway. Changed lanes into you with out signaling or making sure it was clear. If you stop the video you can get the license plate. I'm in Cali and got hit similar to that. They found the car driver 85% at fault. Get a lawyer and let your insurance know you have it on video.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
163 Posts
Very simple. Its the SUV's fault. No reason for them to stop on the freeway. Changed lanes into you with out signaling or making sure it was clear. If you stop the video you can get the license plate. I'm in Cali and got hit similar to that. They found the car driver 85% at fault. Get a lawyer and let your insurance know you have it on video.
Bummer about your bike, I hope that you will be OK.

Except that the motorcycle was changing lanes at the same time. The problem is that they were both going for the same spot. Since the van was hit from the rear, it means that the motorcycle possibly did an incorrect passing maneuver (passing on the right). The problem is that the van was doing the same illegal maneuver (passing on the right) at the same time. This is just my opinion.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
16,227 Posts
Like i said I've been through this....Lawyer Up. You went right to avoid a stopped or stopping vehicle once you moved they pulled in front of you. Your Golden on this one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
153 Posts
Sorry that happened. Hope you have a speedy recovery.

Here's my take. My initial thought was clearly your fault. Same lane accident and you basically rear ended them. However after watching it a few more time, I'm not 100% sure. You can see there is no one in front of them, so he/she is essentially stopping in a highway lane for seemingly no reason and that contributed to the accident. They swerve to the right of the lane as you approach seemingly for no reason. I mean, if they were changing lanes they should have had an indicator on. And lastly, I'll be damned if it doesn't look like they did that intentionally if you watch it a few times. Also they sure had no problem speeding away in that same lane after you went down.

"...I wasn't sure at the time if I hit him...The driver took off, and I told the CHP it was a solo accident. Now I know different....." This part is a bit puzzling to me. I know it's different when you can watch a vid of it later and play Monday morning quarterback, but it seems like you would have know you hit him. I also think he could claim he didn't feel it, but I bet he knew you collided.

All of this said, I think this just punctuates the risks of lane splitting. It's inherently dangerous.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
In my eyes, the fact that the SUV driver didn't stop shows that they probably did it intentionally, thus making it their fault. Yes, you were going too fast and your margin for safety was low, but it wouldn't have happened if the driver had maintained lane position and speed.

Maybe you should amend your CHP report to include the other vehicle, along with a copy of the video.

Just my opinion. Hope you recover quickly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,306 Posts
I won't judge on who is at fault but I did notice that at 10 seconds into the video, both the SUV and the vehicle in the middle lane engaged their brakes. I have to wonder why you still attempted to change lanes at that point.

It appears that lane splitting is a very risky way to ride.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
Good luck with the clavicle. I broke my over a year ago and had surgery to repair it. It was a pretty easy recovery but did require PT to get back my mobility. I hope your repair will be easy too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
873 Posts
Sure looks like they pulled over for no other reason than to stop you from passing them. I didn't see you do anything wrong but get too close to the bast%%d. I think the SUV guy owes you some $$$. Like Joe said, lawyer up, can't hurt to go for a consult and see if they think you have a case. You don't know what medical issues you may have coming. Make that caged rat pay for it...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
163 Posts
Sorry that happened. Hope you have a speedy recovery.

Here's my take. My initial thought was clearly your fault. Same lane accident and you basically rear ended them. However after watching it a few more time, I'm not 100% sure. You can see there is no one in front of them, so he/she is essentially stopping in a highway lane for seemingly no reason and that contributed to the accident. They swerve to the right of the lane as you approach seemingly for no reason. I mean, if they were changing lanes they should have had an indicator on. And lastly, I'll be damned if it doesn't look like they did that intentionally if you watch it a few times. Also they sure had no problem speeding away in that same lane after you went down.

"...I wasn't sure at the time if I hit him...The driver took off, and I told the CHP it was a solo accident. Now I know different....." This part is a bit puzzling to me. I know it's different when you can watch a vid of it later and play Monday morning quarterback, but it seems like you would have know you hit him. I also think he could claim he didn't feel it, but I bet he knew you collided.

All of this said, I think this just punctuates the risks of lane splitting. It's inherently dangerous.
I don't think it was intentional. It looks like the car in front of him came to an almost complete stop in order to merge into the slowly moving right lane. They probably needed to exit soon, so quickly changed into the right lane. They did not see the motorcycle rapidly approaching between lanes. (no wonder).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
137 Posts
No legal opinion from me (I've never lived anywhere that lane splitting was accepted)

I'm old enough to feel my mortality and have always been a very defensive minded rider/driver so watching videos of they way you guys out west ride in traffic makes me cringe....LOL

Heal fast, get back on the bike soon, and be careful out there ;)
 
  • Like
Reactions: Smiley

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
I split lanes every single day and legally it can be the SUV fault, but that accident was 100% avoidable by the bike... When you're on the bike it is up to you to avoid accidents. For them its a fender bender, for you its a hospital visit regardless of who is legally at fault.

First mistake, you assumed that they see you. Ride like you're invisible, trusting them to see you is the fastest way to get killed.

Intentional on the SUV? Doubt it, they were probably on the phone or distracted.

Why didn't you brake earlier or move to the side? Target fixation?

Hint: Prepare for cagers to do the must stupid thing they can do... And you will be surprised.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
304 Posts
In Illinois, if you hit someone from behind, its your fault, period. I'm not going to say that this was your fault, but the guy you hit is an a$$hole for not stopping to make sure you were okay.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
235 Posts
First AJE, serious bummer! Sorry it happened, and heal fast!

I'm going with Weljo and Susser Tod on this - get a lawyer, the SUV deserves most of the blame.

But sorry AJE; while you had a right to be splitting, I have to call it contributory negligence: There was a big open spot to the SUV's right, and he dove for it - stupid, unnecessary, but drivers do things like that :( Doesn't excuse his failure to signal, failure to look, or leaving the scene of the accident! - but it could have been anticipated.

For everyone else - I noticed that most non Californians (who probably have little experience splitting) condemned the act and blamed the rider.

I lane split commuting in Nor Cal for over 10 years without incident. I'm not a squid. I'm old, conservative, and careful. Splitting intelligently (reasonable speed differential, anticipating stupid behavior, wearing conspicuous gear (ATGATT), but still assuming you're invisible) is safe - probably safer than sitting in the middle of a lane in stop-and-go traffic, waiting for the distracted idiot behind to rear end you!

I don't expect to convince the non-believers, but I periodically filtered past CHP patrol cars without incident. (The CHP bikes were typically splitting much faster than I was - I got out of their way and waved as they went past. They waved back :)

Flip side is that splitting irresponsibly (and AJE wasn't) IS asking for trouble. But so is racing a motorcycle on public roads, wheeling down the highway, or exceeding your abilities.

Ride safe everyone! The moral here isn't about splitting, it's about watching out for all the bad drivers out there!

Rob in KC (formerly Half Moon Bay, CA)
'14 Versys 650
 
1 - 20 of 39 Posts
Top