Fear from hearing motorcycle crash stories? - Honda CBR 300 Forum
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post #1 of 24 Old 07-17-2019, 04:21 PM Thread Starter
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Fear from hearing motorcycle crash stories?

When you hear stories of a motorcycle wreck or when you see one in real life.....what is it that keeps you from selling your motorcycle and giving up riding?

It occurs we are a peculiar and small segment of the overall population. Speaking for myself I have seen stories galore of motorcycle crashes and even witnessed a few in real life. Actually I witnessed the aftermath, not the actual collision.

But we are definitely "going against the grain" of mainstream society. I think the traditional humanoid has a fear of motorcycles that is so deep that they will NEVER purchase one.

There is something special about people like us, we are able to disengage this "switch" of fear and to pursue a love of riding in spite of the horror stories we hear and in spite of all the "advice" from wives and friends to just sell our motorcycle.......Its too dangerous.

I wonder if....

1) You feel your riding skills and reflexes are so good that you feel you can react to the unexpected FASTER than a traditional rider or
2) You believe that God is looking out for you and protecting you from danger or
3) You feel the bikers that crash where riding like idiots and taking senseless risks that led to their downfall or
4) You feel Death is a form of predetermined fate and that when its your time to go you are going to go whether on a motorcycle or even without owning a motorcycle or

maybe a different reason than those I listed?
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post #2 of 24 Old 07-17-2019, 05:24 PM
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Numbers 1 and 3.
Defensive riding with good observation skill and assuming they are all out to get you covers 1.
Seeing the way many others ride and thinking " I wouldn't have done that". covers 3.
Many times I hold back from an overtake but others will come past regardless of the corner we are going into.
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post #3 of 24 Old 07-17-2019, 07:47 PM
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i'm going to go with #5 .... all of the above. but mostly 2..and 3...and 4 and partly #1 (mostly skills 'cause the reflexes have slowed a little).
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post #4 of 24 Old 07-17-2019, 10:03 PM
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I wouldn't say my riding skills are amazing, but I feel like I can read obstacles and patterns on the road better than average. I played a lot of chess growing up. That's all traffic is. A big game of chess with big pieces aka cars.

Might be a bit personal but I've had depression for most of my life, and have severe ADHD. Swinging my right leg over the bike is one of the few joys I experience in life. And I also don't care if I die most of the time. At least I won't have to spend another day at work. Yes I know I just started a new job. All jobs are a chore to me. But I probably won't die on my bike because I pay full attention and keep my head on a swivel.

Someone would have to plow into me from behind at a red light.
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post #5 of 24 Old 07-17-2019, 11:37 PM
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Alot of the bad wrecks in my area are Harley's single vehicle accidents -can't count how many times I went to the crash site and rode the same lane and wondered how the **** did he run off the road and crash-a few years back one guy with a new Harley temp plate and all passed me and waved on the interstate next thing I know he crashed and died just two miles ahead of me didn't hit anything just missed a curve- so what gives
A drinking
B Harley's don't handle
C Harley's have terrible brakes
D new riders
E all of the above
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post #6 of 24 Old 07-18-2019, 06:51 AM
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I hear and see the motorcycle crashes though I wouldn't say it induces fear. More reinforces to me the need to keep vigilant and yeah, maybe back off a bit. I mainly sports ride so I'm usually getting along at a brisk clip which gives you less time to react to situations as we all know. It's a calculated risk to a certain extent but no one wants to be on the end of a bad equation. I take some confidence from the fact that I've never had a nasty injury crash in the 35yrs I've been riding, so I think I'm doing an OK job of my risk management.

I started circuit racing about 5 years ago and whilst it has improved my ability to think and ride at high speed in a calm(ish) manner, overall I think it has slowed me down out on the road. I no longer feel as safe barreling around blind bends that I cant see through and the road feels rougher and inconsistent compared to the track. The lack of run off area affects me more. I now see power poles, trees and banks next the road like I never did before. Yep, it's dangerous out there for sure. But your also a long time in a box and you've gotta do what you love while your here.

@Hi-Viz-Honda No worries sharing the personal stuff mate, everyone has their story. I'm pleased for you that you can at least find some solace on two wheels. I had a melt down in 2010 that affected me greatly but it wasn't until '13 when I bought my CBR250 that the recovery rate improved. Getting back into motorcycling was the best thing I ever did and now the racing keeps me even busier and my mind in positive channels. Still a long way to go and I may never get back to where I was but at least I will be doing it with the wind in my hair and my bum off the side of the seat!

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post #7 of 24 Old 07-18-2019, 08:13 AM
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I have to go with a little bit of all. All of my get-offs were in my 20’s, I am so much more careful now. I’m more scared of deer than I am most things as they have been the closest thing trying to send me to the promised land lately.
Most of my skills are severely less than they once were, except for one.... awareness.... I am constantly looking around and always slowing at cross-roads automatically assuming the other car doesn’t see me etc.... We are rural (and treeless) enough though, that about 2/3’s of any of my rides are pure enjoyment. The other third is making sure I get to the enjoyment part.

I do think sometimes we are idiots.... whether drinking, or being too brave for our skill set (....like I was in my 20’s)...... or throwing caution to the wind around a blind corner (like I do in my 50’s). I also think there is a certain idiocy it takes to ride a powered bicycle in a steel **** anyway

I also took a new attitude of death when my kale eating health conscious wife of 23 years, who used to tell me how if I kept eating what I ate and riding what I rode was going to make her an early widow, died in a car wreck....... I’m going to be as careful as possible, but when my time is up, I’m ok with that.

Luckily, my new wife loves to ride...... even changed her hairstyle to reduce helmet hair

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post #8 of 24 Old 07-18-2019, 11:59 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback, gang.

Like @kiwi rider said.........When I hear of motorcycle accidents instead of generating fear it just makes me thing "i need to be more vigilant.....I need to slow down.........I need to be more careful and more accurate in order to avoid a crash.

We grew up in a bad neighborhood. My Dad had a strict rule to NEVER go out shopping at night and to never pump petrol at night to never to to the supermarket at night. He believed that to step foot outside at night exposed you to many special dangers.

But I found such behavior to be unreasonable. We have to find a "middle ground". So for me the mainstream society belief that "motorcycles are suicide machines, AVOID THEM!" was a similar form of "excessive logic". It was an extreme view.

I dont think that we motorcycle riders are crazy but rather that we are independent thinkers. We dont just swallow society's drivel bur instead we make our own independent conclusion based on our own logic and reasoning.

And here is a perfect example right here: Let us examine the popular statement "A motorcycle rider is 30 times more likely to die compared to a car driver".

Sure, when I say it that way it sounds scary and that is good enough to scare the majority from riding a motorcycle. But the succinctness (shortness) of the statement leads to an incorrect interpretation.

A more accurate portrayal would be "A motorcycle rider that collides with a car is 30 times more likely to die than a car that collides with another car ".

The bold letters is important. You see we are talking about people that are involved in a collision with a car. So basically if you avoid colliding with a car then the 30x factor does not apply to you.

So if you follow my reasoning here it is only "the guys who crash" that have reason to be afraid. So dont crash into a car and then you have nothing to worry about. I mean yes there are alot of single motorcycle crashes from guys that lose control in the twisties or for some other reason having to do with their lack of riding skill. Mostly Harley and cruiser guys (ha-ha! sorry to point those guys out but its true)

In reality the most at risk riders are these Sunday Warriors who only take the bike out on Sunday on a 15 minute ride. The problem with those guys is they just dont have enough seat time put in to truly get good at riding. So due to their small amount of experience they end up laying the bike down on corners or when the unexpected happens. Those guys never work on emergency braking drills or swerving drills. So when a possum jumps out on the road they swerve, then over-correct and end up on their side.

My own controversial opinion is that if you have less than 5000 miles put in of seat time then you are a rookie, a total noob. So if that is the case then ride with caution and take very few risks inside of that first 5000 miles. Perhaps wear an orange construction vest not just so the cars notice you but also to let the cars know you are a rookie.

And of course ATGATT. I highly recommend the book "Proficient motorcycling" by hough. That book really taught me alot.

I guess the main point of this post is that we should not get so hung up on crash statistics. Evaluate yourself as an individual because not all riders are created equal. Alot of the guys crashing are drunks or Sunday Warriors or twenty-somethings on crotch-rockets.

I say just keep your head on a swivel, be hyper-aware and then nothing will take you by surprise. And of course leave a gap of space between you and the car in front and always leave yourself an escape path in case the unexpected happens.

Collisions happen when 2 physical bodies moving at speed attempt to occupy the same "spot" at the same time. So dont do that.
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post #9 of 24 Old 07-18-2019, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by King CobRa View Post
... My own controversial opinion is that if you have less than 5000 miles put in of seat time then you are a rookie, a total noob. So if that is the case then ride with caution and take very few risks inside of that first 5000 miles. Perhaps wear an orange construction vest not just so the cars notice you but also to let the cars know you are a rookie.
We have a street race in my nearest city every year in February. It's the usual deal with no run off areas and temporary steel gates to protect the public, not you the rider! I gave it a crack once but decided it crossed my own personal boundaries of risk management.
But anyways.. I did want to say that one of the things they do is make the first timers wear an orange construction vest so that the other riders know to perhaps expect some erratic lines/moves and give them a bit of room.
Good idea.

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post #10 of 24 Old 07-18-2019, 08:50 PM
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hi-vis on being hit by a rear-ender at lights;


never sit behind a stopped car at lights..


always filter to the front and start from there into clear 'motorcycle space'..
if filtering space is blocked, start filtering even if only between last two stopped cars,, where you are protected [by them] from rear-enders..


if even first filter space is closed [eg two big trucks close together] then stop at one side, away from bulls-eye center position..
always wait in gear, fingers over clutch, one eye in rear view mirror..
always look for your, little space, wherever cars stop to turn or lights etc..
wherever you choose, be aware of escape routes, including changes as they move or adjust to situation, eg, lights change but only some get through..
of course that should include you filtered to the front..


for eg, while not typical, i may moved onto and along traffic furniture [dividers etc] and even used the footpath or over gutter to bye-pass a blockage or escape some nutcase deliberately blocking my filter..
filtering is legal here, with most drivers courteous even making way etc,
but the point is our different situation in traffic etc, unbound by typical road dimensions designed around car and vehicle length and width..


we are vulnerable and exposed, but, we have special maneuverability

not bound by car size or shapes.. thus recognition of rational filtering laws for bikes,, proven to break gridlocked traffic and free up traffic space generally.. why stop mid lane behind a stopped car [?!] when we are a narrow vehicle able to choose, where we stop, or how we approach lights or general traffic..


this is just one example of our potential for avoidance.. our other areas include parking options, that cars dont have.. we can park 6 bikes in one cars size space.. i like parking in entrances or behind restaurants etc, especially where wheely-bins are left in lines,, i just move the first one and park there, within the bin line.. noone cares, and we are covered by the bins.. you can park on footpaths in many areas without bothering anyone, especially parked flush to not hinder pedestrians or cover entrances etc..
[just another eg, for consideration, outside of car space conditioning]...


as to the question,, there are so many areas of real attraction to riding as to need a book to cover, but ask why people go into surf [where sharks live]

or climb mountains, or go sky-diving, or ski or ride off road, snow or water or surf special vehicles, etc, etc...


of course some wont, do any of such things, but many,, will and do..

you can be taken out standing at a bus stop,, and you can spend a lifetime surfing or scuba diving etc, without being eaten by sharks, or otherwise
destroy yourself.. risks are part of life, which well managed add natural spice to many enjoyable even addictive lifestyle choices...
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