Who loves bikes?

by JRK 24 Replies latest social entertainment

  • Simon

    I used to have a bike when I was young, nothing spectacular, but it was fun.

  • blondie

    I rode bicycles in my younger years and motorbikes but quit both when I was almost taken out by cars in each case. I still see people on bikes taken out every month....and motorcycles. I need that extra protection of a car or van.

  • Landy

    That sentence is just missing a "... yet".

    But the trouble with a bike is that if some douche does something stupid, you will always come off worse. Even being in a group of riders doesn't seem to help - some idiot decided to do a U-turn in front of some recently. Too many idiot car and truck drivers that ruin things.

    Not sure if this holds true worldwide as the types of roads we have in the UK are different to North America but the fatality rate for motorcycles in the UK is about 30 times greater that car drivers per billion km travelled.

    It's a myth, however that it's other road users that kill us. We kill ourselves. By the thousands.

    The urban SMIDSY (Sorry, mate I didn't see you) type collision is the most popular form of car/bike interface but they tend to happen at low speed, and as a rule, we bounce reasonably well and statisically these type of accidents don't tend to end in death or serious injury. SMIDSYs in NSL (national speed limit) are much more scary but happen very infrequently.

    Where the biggest issue with motorcycling fatalites is with rural roads, the 35-45 age range and bikes above 600cc. These accidents tend to fall in to two categories, the bend refusal and overtakes.

    Bend refusals are where the rider fails to negotiate a bend and either runs wide and collects a car coming the other way, or goes into the verge and hits some object more resilient than them. As a rider if we barrel into a bend at a speed we think is too fast (notice we think rather than actually is - in reality the bend can be very inoccuous and easily negotiated) our reaction is to freeze, our arms stiffen and our gaze locks on what we think is going to kill us. And on a bike we go where we look. If we can't take our eyes off what we think we are are going to hit it becomes a self fulflilling prophecy. This is called target fixation and it's a very difficult thing to overcome.

    The second way we kill ourselves is overtaking. Nornally the issue occurs when we overtake at a junction. As we overtake a car pulls up to the junction we're passing to turn left, looks to his right and pulls straight out into the path of the bike. Game over.

    So yes, riding a bike is more risky but even in an urban environment you can manage those risks. You can certainly manage the risks in a rural environment.

    So the upshot is if you want a bike, then get one. They're great.

  • glenster
  • Anders Andersen
    Anders Andersen

    Yamaha Diversion 900 that doesn't get the attention she needs :-/

    And a man-powered bicycle for the daily 6.5 km/4 mile commute.

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