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 Motorcycle Safety
 Motorcycle Accident Reports - WITH COMMENTS
 Right turner hit from behind / Safety Tip 025
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Junior Member
50 Posts

Patchogue, NY


Posted - 07/15/2016 :  11:05 AM                       Like
I happened to read safety tip number 25 ( http://www.msgroup.org/Tip.aspx?Num=025&Set= ) "Controlling Your Land" about an hour before stumbling across the crash I will describe here. As a non rider with zero experience I am not going to disagree with any safety tips, and I also know that every section of road at any given time presents unique circumstances and that no single behavior is a panacea.

The location is a section of Brooklyn, NY. The rider is heading west at 1:20 in the afternoon. His intention is to make the right turn shown in the picture.

As the rider does this, a dump truck passes him on his right. From the article it appears that he started his turn, saw the truck, applied brakes which lead to him falling off of the bike and then being struck by the truck. No criminal charges were filed.

So this got me thinking of Tip Number 25 which says that while executing a right turn, you need to control your lane by being towards the right. In the picture above there is "technically" only one lane, but there is enough room for three lanes when the road is clear. So I think in this case it has to be viewed as such and the right track of the imaginary left lane should have been occupied by the motorcycle. I'm guessing that perhaps the rider treated the road as one lane, began to slow and the truck driver figured, "let me go around this guy." I can also imagine that the rider may have signaled and the truck driver didn't notice.

No criminal charges were filed. I looked at what the NY DMV has to say about passing and found this:

You can pass a vehicle on the right only in the conditions listed below, and only if you can pass safely.
  • When a vehicle ahead makes a left turn.
  • When you are on a two-way road that is marked for two or more lanes or is wide enough for two or more lanes, and passing is not prohibited by signs or restricted by parked cars or other obstructions.
  • When you drive on a one-way road that is marked for two or more lanes or is wide enough for two or more lanes, and passing is not prohibited by signs or restricted by parked cars or other obstructions.

The same document also states the following:

When you pass a motorcycle, remember to give the motorcycle the same full lane width as other vehicles are allowed. Never move into the same lane space as a motorcycle, even if the lane is wide and the motorcycle is to one side.

I don't know if these are guidelines or law.

A little more info from FARS:

The road is listed as a two lane road in the data base.

The truck was a commercial vehicle driven by a 21 year old male, alcohol impaired, 2 previous crashes, one speeding conviction, 2 "PREVIOUS OTHER HARMFUL MV CONVICTIONS", not sure what that means.

The rider was not impaired, had one previous accident, three license suspensions, and had a valid MC license at the time of the crash.

Original news article:

Advanced Member
6949 Posts

Meridian, ID


XR650L, 790 Adv R

Posted - 07/18/2016 :  7:59 PM
This is all confusing. Was he making a right turn into that Speedy Gas place, or to the road after it? If he was signalling a right turn, why would a truck be passing him on the right?

On a related topic to "controlling your lane" (no "d"), I was following a guy who was riding a Honda Shadow motorcycle down out of the Sierras this afternoon (I was in a car) and he made a left turn into some parking lot at a narrow section of a small town. I was a bit annoyed that he "controlled his lane" and I couldn't squeeze on past on the right. Apparently he did it correctly.
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Junior Member
50 Posts

Patchogue, NY


Posted - 07/18/2016 :  10:32 PM
According to the article, the motorcycle rider was making a right onto the street, after the gas station. People are very impatient and the FARS data shows the kid had alcohol in his system. I'm only speculating that the motorcycle slowed but was towards the middle of the street leaving enough room for the truck to go around him on the right.
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Advanced Member
1716 Posts

Stratford, CT



Posted - 07/20/2016 :  2:27 PM   Join poster on Facebook as Friend  
To ME, this is a situational thing.

On a busy street, antsy time of day for drivers, or familiar wide, but single lane roads where people squeeze in to turn right on red, I get to the right of the lane to turn right.

I recall another time, I stayed to the left of the lane to turn left, hardly any traffic except oncoming so I had to wait, an import car came from behind flying. He swerved at the last moment around me. I was glad he had room.

On the other hand, my brother insists on controlling his lane at all times. I think, if a car misses his turn signal light, the car (or bike) behind him MAY misunderstand his intentions. Or, a 4 way intersection, him turning right, but the oncoming vehicle thinking he's turning left, and the oncoming also is turning left...

In the end, I guess the thing is, make yourself seen, noticed, and you ARE turning, and which way. Lots of braking, with lots of brake light, along with signaling, and check your six. Couldn't hurt to add a hand signal if the guy behind is close, or closing fast.
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