BC Riders and Poor Safety Gear - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 15 Old 07-21-2007, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2006
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BC Riders and Poor Safety Gear

Just saw this article in the Province


As my Strom has been out of commision for the past few weeks, I have to be content watching other fortunate riders cruise up and down the boulevards of our fair city.

I feel compelled to decry the terrible lack of basic safety gear that I have seen on Vancouver Streets, Including:

No Jacket

No Gloves

Wearing Street Shoes

Wearing shorts

And my favorite combo:

Some kid with no shirt, no jacket, flip flops, swim trunks, and no gloves on a 750cc crotch rocket near Yaletown.

As the infamous Stomette once said "All the Gear All the Time!!"

I know all the local Strom trooper I have met have always been fully suited up. Not much we can do about other riders, except encourage out friends and family members to suit up as much as we do!
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post #2 of 15 Old 07-21-2007, 05:57 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Nanoose Bay BC
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Cool Summer gear

In the 38 degree weather we have been having in the Okanagan, I too have been guilty of not wearing all the gear. I wear jeans, riding boots, gloves, but have been out without a jacket many times. What I see that scares me is young guys, sometimes with teen aged girls on the back of sport bikes, cruising in traffic with sandals and shorts, you can't even put your foot down successfully...
I support new riders being limited to 400 or 500cc bikes for their first year, I started on 250 British bikes and progressed to larger Japanese ones. 40 years of riding without an accident (knock on wood) Just by knowing my limits. Also, the carrying of passengers should be an earned privilege as well.

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post #3 of 15 Old 07-22-2007, 01:17 PM
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I am not saying we should not wear protective gear, but when you look at what they are talking about it doesn't support the case much:

Of the 9 fatalities they talked about, 5 deaths involved extremely high rates of speed and one alcohol and no helmet colliding into a car.

From what they are saying I don't see how Boots, jackets or other gear apart from (possibly!) the helmet might have made much difference in those cases.

They also made a point that speed kills but as is usually the case in most reporting by newspapers and police the numbers are presented in a vacuum. What percentage of bike riders ride at extremely high rate of speed? What percentage of *that* group are involved in fatalities? What percentage of riders are *not* riding at high rates of speeds? What percentage of riders in *that* group are involved involved in fatalities?

They also say that this supports riding at the posted speed limit. I don't know the numbers in BC but I suspect that in Ontario 90 plus percent of drivers/riders are driving *above* the limit when they are not in bumper to bumper traffic; and yet the vast majority of people are not crashing their cars/bikes. Everyone speeds as most limits are set too low, at what point above an unrealistic speed limit does speed become excessive?

Without knowing the total set of numbers involved they can't draw conclusions like this.

I do agree that training is extremely important! When it comes to limiting bike sizes of new riders where do you draw the line? Even today's 500 cc bikes are much quicker than any road gong car.


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post #4 of 15 Old 07-22-2007, 03:04 PM
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Kamloops, BC, Canada
Posts: 327
This is an interesting topic. I admit that I normally ride around town in jeans, a tee-shirt, 'street' shoes and no gloves. I have a Kilmanjaro jacket for long rides that I wear around town when the weather is cooler. However, I wil not ride in shorts and sandals and I have just bought a larger topbox that will hold my helmet and jacket - so I may improve!. I have only had 1 crash in 45 years of riding - yes, I did get scraped up pretty bad.

Refering to the newspaper article, most of the deaths were caused by stupidity, natural selection if you will. I have noticed a huge number of new and returning riders this year. Some 'old farts' on Harleys - usually decked out in leather from chin to toe, some on bikes that haven't seen the light of day for 25 years and some in shorts and sandals on 'crotch rockets'. In my opinion, the statistics can only get worse.
What is my point? I don't know - I'm just rambling .


"If our world didn't suck - we'd all fall off!"
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post #5 of 15 Old 07-22-2007, 07:17 PM
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 159
This stupidity is not limited to Kelowna. I'm visiting in Calgary and I don't think I've seen more than 2 riders in proper gear. Having gone down on a low speed turn, I will not ride without my gear. I value my looks (and flesh) too much to risk it.

If it's too hot to wear the gear, I don't ride.

Just my 2 cents.


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post #6 of 15 Old 07-22-2007, 08:20 PM
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It's simple

It's simple, folks. ATGATT.

If you're not wearing your gear it's because you think that you are control of your own destiny. It ain't so, folks! You're on a motorcycle, which means many of the cagers that are talking on their cell phone or arguing with their kids in the back seat don't see you! *THEY* are in control of your destiny.

I like the line someone said about natural selection. It's too bad the media likes to latch onto these stories and give all bikers a bad name.

-Peter in Niagara Falls
ATGATT, even in the heat
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post #7 of 15 Old 07-22-2007, 08:44 PM
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Location: BC Canada
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I'm just not into skin grafts

Big & fugly, mmmmmmmm....

Last edited by Long Way; 08-03-2007 at 06:09 PM.
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post #8 of 15 Old 07-23-2007, 01:27 AM
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Originally Posted by Long Way View Post
I'm just not into skin graphs
I'm guessing that would be skin grafts?

"If our world didn't suck - we'd all fall off!"
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post #9 of 15 Old 07-24-2007, 10:21 AM
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Burnaby, BC, Canada
Posts: 102
It all comes down to risk vs reward

Let's face it, if you want to guarantee that you will never be injured in a motorcycle accident (as a rider), don't ride. Obviously everyone on this forum has decided the rewards of riding, especially meeting other riders, are worth the risk. Once one has made that choice there are some basic considerations that can minimize one's risk of injury:
  • Training and practice, including learning from others
  • Ride within one's ability and comfort level
  • Ride defensively. Respect weather and traffic conditions. Consider all other motorists guilty, until proven innocent, of doing the wrong thing
  • Wear the gear. Each of us will make choices as to how much risk we are willing to take with respect to gear. Many of us don't own gear that provides maximum protection. This could be due to budget, aesthetics or other reasons. Some of us don't wear all of our gear all of the time, probably for convenience or enjoyment.
None of us would be participating in this thread if we didn't appreciate that reducing any of the above increases one's risk. I am more comfortable, under most conditions, wearing all of my gear (I've crashed my bicycle a few times, at relatively low speeds, and didn't enjoy the results!). Having said that I am headed out the door to drop off the motorcycle for servicing and will basically be wearing street clothes, as I will then walk to transit service and continue on to work. It is only 6 blocks away (I know, most accidents occur within two blocks of home), but I plan to ride very conservatively and my route has little traffic. I consider the risk very low and worth the convenience.

It is interesting to note that in Vancouver there seems to be a tremendous increase in speed-governed scooters (gas, electric, pedal-assisted, governed to under 50 or 60 kph) and I have not heard of, or seen, any accidents involving these machines. No doubt it happens, but considering the number of them, the rate must be fairly low. I've got to think that this is because they aren't fast and the type of person that rides them is, generally, a cautious rider. Few of these riders wear any protective gear other than a helmet. No special licence is required, hence it is unlikely many have ever received any training. Anybody have any contrary knowledge or stats on this? I'd be interested to know.

Anyway, safe riding to all of you out there!

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post #10 of 15 Old 07-24-2007, 11:49 AM
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Location: Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Oh, oh - I feel a sidetrack coming on! However, it is in keeping with the main thread.
bcguido raises an interesting point - the growing use of 'speed-governed' 2 wheelers. Even in backwater Kamloops I see a huge increase in these. Not surprising as they are cheap to buy and run. Now I think on it, my first 'bike' was a 1950's 49cc NSU Quickly moped - so there's hope for these people. I try to welcome them to the 2 wheel world by waving but I am rarely acknowledged, not sure if they think I'm poking fun or they are too scared to let go of the bars for a second. Safety gear seems to be unregulated, I see helmets ranging from bicycle to full-face. Knowing Vancouver traffic's intolerance for slow moving vehicles, it must be only a matter of time before some of these guys become Acura hood ornaments?

"If our world didn't suck - we'd all fall off!"
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