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 Motorcycle Safety
 Roadcraft
 Roadcraft, an introduction
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dogdoc427
Male Standard Member
196 Posts


Milan, New York
USA

Yamaha

650+87 Honda GL1200I

Posted - 06/15/2009 :  7:55 PM
quote:
Originally posted by rioguy

I found this description of a crash on another forum. In my opinion, the rider positioned himself poorly. Thoughts?

Added: The reason it's in this thread and not the accident thread is there are at least three failures as defined by the Roadcraft system.

1. Positioning
2. Attitude towards other drivers
3. Unwillingness to accept responsibility for the crash. (Not legal responsibility, that's a different issue.)

quote:
Doing 40-45 (45 mph zone) in right hand lane of a 6 lane highway. My lane is clear and I am watching this big black SUV a car length ahead in the left lane next to me. The stupid moron with no signal or nothing swerves in front of me. I execute the best emergency stop I can, lean to the right to miss the dang thing and next thing...................................
__________________
'07 Virago 250




After reading every ones take on this I agree that this rider was positioned poorly but I can not ignore the part where he states that he executed his emergency stop and leaned to the right to miss the vehicle. I read this as hard braking and swerving in one action, a major taboo as I understand things at this point in my riding career. Please correct me if I am wrong.

Regards, Dogdoc427
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rioguy
Ex-Member

Posted - 06/15/2009 :  8:34 PM
quote:
dogdocc427 said:
After reading every ones take on this I agree that this rider was positioned poorly but I can not ignore the part where he states that he executed his emergency stop and leaned to the right to miss the vehicle. I read this as hard braking and swerving in one action, a major taboo as I understand things at this point in my riding career. Please correct me if I am wrong.


Keep in mind the title of this thread is Roadcraft. The concept seems to be based more on interrupting the chain of events that lead to a crash at the earliest and simplest level. Not with final stage emergency maneuvers. I'm guessing that's covered in earlier books or in verbal parts of the course.

Had the title of the thread been parking lot practice, I'd have focused more on the braking and swerving aspect. Nearing limits on both at the same time is likely to cause the bike to end up on the ground. Glad you pointed out the omission.
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dogdoc427
Male Standard Member
196 Posts


Milan, New York
USA

Yamaha

650+87 Honda GL1200I

Posted - 06/15/2009 :  9:35 PM
Rioguy,

I understand the progression of the thread and agree wholeheartedly with the concept of avoiding the "traps" before one falls victim by learning a driving style that promotes recognizing and staying out of bad scenarios. I do feel however, that an accomplished rider would have the skills (hopefully) to deal with a bad situation should one "sneak up" on them. Please do not misunderstand, I think he should have been able to see this one coming and been able to avoid it.

I am very interested in "Roadcraft" and will be studying its content as soon as my copy arrives (ordered 1 week ago from U.K.). Not having read anything on it other than this thread I am not yet versed in the system. Does it have anything to say about what to do should one find themselves in a situation such as the rider mentioned above? Or do they just tell you do not get in this situation, if you do you are toast? I mean no disrespect by this, I am curious and uneducated in regards to Roadcraft.

Regards, Dogdoc427
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rioguy
Ex-Member

Posted - 06/16/2009 :  4:44 AM
dogdocc427,

There is a section on braking and not braking in a swerve on page 79. In my opinion, it's not as thorough as what's in Proficient Motorcycling. There may be another section I haven't discovered yet.

In my opinion, books like Proficient Motorcycling and the Ride Like a Pro V video would be better sources for last second evasive techniques. I think the book is written for the person who is already proficient in these maneuvers.







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Nigel A
Male Junior Member
68 Posts


TAUNTON, Somerset
United Kingdom

(None)

Formerly BMW 80RT

Posted - 06/16/2009 :  6:25 AM
quote:
Originally posted by rioguy

dogdocc427,

There is a section on braking and not braking in a swerve on page 79. In my opinion, it's not as thorough as what's in Proficient Motorcycling. There may be another section I haven't discovered yet.

In my opinion, books like Proficient Motorcycling and the Ride Like a Pro V video would be better sources for last second evasive techniques. I think the book is written for the person who is already proficient in these maneuvers.


Yes, but, as you know RC is not designed for last ditch manoeuvres. It is aimed at not being there in the first place, rather than one who is, as you say, 'proficient in these manoeuvres'. If they have got that far they have got it badly wrong in the first place.

In this context tt is intersting to go back to the original Roadcrafts and read the introductions. The 1960 version reads thus, in part, 'Accidents, with rare exceptions, do not occur at any given times and place, but rather in widely scattered areas and at all times of the day and night. Comparatively few of these incidents can be directly attributed to any partaicular road feature or vehicle defect, but it is found that in nine cases out of ten the cause of the accident can be traced to the failure of the 'human element' of the person or persons concerned'. This might be considered rather wordy by today's standards but, I believe that is still as true today as it was then.
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Robus
Male Senior Member
293 Posts


Chicago, IL
USA

BMW

R1200RT, HD FLTRU

Posted - 09/03/2009 :  1:56 AM
Just had to post a response to the exchange between Nigel and James on the first page of this thread; I'll go on to reading the rest of the thread presently.

I can relate to what Nigel is saying about following distance. One of the things I have been doing in my riding is experimenting to see how large of a following distance I can maintain consistently. I'm finding that I can maintain a surprisingly large distance, whether in heavy traffic or light, urban traffic or the freeway. If some other cager jumps into the gap, I just relax my grip on the throttle and let the gap widen again. It's no longer a matter of 2 or 3 seconds. I can usually get away with much more than that.

The advantages of a big following distance that I can see are as follows: better view of the situation ahead of the car in front; better visibility of and to oncoming traffic; better view of the road surface; less concern about rear-ending the driver ahead and therefore more time to survey 360 degrees around; a more relaxed and focused ride. I've been amazed at what a difference a few additional seconds of following distance can make.
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Robus
Male Senior Member
293 Posts


Chicago, IL
USA

BMW

R1200RT, HD FLTRU

Posted - 09/08/2009 :  12:12 AM
quote:
The stupid moron...


Anyone else see a pattern here? Almost any narrative that includes these words and ends with "crash" was written by a rider who didn't get the concept of defensive driving--and probably still does not.

For an example, here is a youtube video that can be described as amusing only because the rider walked away uninjured. It could have turned out tragic and not amusing at all. This 20-something kid was lane-splitting on a Cali expressway, going way too fast, paying zero attention to the traffic in front of him, and crashed without taking any evasive action. When some of the commentators pointed out that his riding had contributed to the crash, his response was "well, I got a monetary settlement." From the stupid moron...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_GH8D2EqDZs

Edited by - Robus on 09/08/2009 12:44 AM
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bachman1961
Male Advanced Member
2266 Posts
[Mentor]


colorado springs, co
USA

Honda

CB750 NightHawk

Posted - 09/08/2009 :  1:46 AM
quote:
Originally posted by Robus

I'm finding that I can maintain a surprisingly large distance, whether in heavy traffic or light, urban traffic or the freeway. If some other cager jumps into the gap, I just relax my grip on the throttle and let the gap widen again. It's no longer a matter of 2 or 3 seconds. I can usually get away with much more than that.



+ 1

It really didn't take much discipline for me to start adopting that habit. I'm still learning ,, a work in process.

*I try to allow plenty of time to get to my destination and do not feel rushed to compete in traffic (or at least will refuse to try making up time this way).

*I have read countless experiences from hyper-milers that nearly eliminate stops for red lights, get better mpg, and drive with less stress. A key point in this approach is plenty of cushion and pacing to stay in a wave of motion using slight speed variations to remain in the 'sweet' spot.

On my ride Sunday, I was at 3.5 to 4 seconds trailing another bike on a fairly open road, dry conditions and good visibility at 50-60 mph.
I did not feel I offered a sufficient gap that would invite a passing vehicle, yet the time/space issue felt very conservative. Traffic was light and I would have just adjusted back in the case where that gap disappeared.

These concepts influence my driving habits because the ideal benefit in the big picture for me is a greater buffer zone where it really matters most.
The thing I try to remember is to not discount the whole idea or blow it off ... It's not ALL or NOTHING.
I adapt these tactics as I am able to in traffic and use them in the degrees or increments that fit the situation. It's not always going to yield a real-world 3-5 seconds distance or the twelve-fifteen second scan ahead but I will better train myself to recognize the most important and immediate potential problems and by design, have the time / distance as a buffer.

It's not always going to be about stopping distance .. maybe that extra .5 of a second is the time I can use to decide if stopping, accelerating, or swerving is the better option or is there another 'out' to consider ?
I often see riders with different sets of risk thresholds and values. They are easy to spot and I see them on the road every day. If you missed them, just go to " youtube ".

~brian
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Robus
Male Senior Member
293 Posts


Chicago, IL
USA

BMW

R1200RT, HD FLTRU

Posted - 09/08/2009 :  2:48 AM
Excellent post brian. My strategy is to expand the following distance to the limits that are possible. I may not be able to maintain 5-7 seconds, but I'll always be safer than someone whose goal is 2-3 seconds.
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