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post #1 of 7 Old 08-01-2006, 09:44 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 79
Almost hit

Today I was almost involved in an accident.
Let me start saying that a few days ago, coming to work a big white van suddenly stopped in front of me and i made the mistake of not applying enough front brake and too much rear brake. The rear of the bike went sideways but I was able to stop in time not to hit the van. After that I went and practiced emergengy braking until I was satisfied with the results.

That paid off today.
I was riding on the lefmost lane of this 3 lane highway, a lot of traffic at this hour. I have cars all around me. The cars in front of me speed up and leave a gap in my lane but the lanes on my right remain full of cars at a constant speed that I calculate about 45-50 mph, so i speed up to about 55 to fill the gap in front of me and guess what... the cars in front of me STOP :shock: and i had to brake HARD, I never panicked and never lost control.
While i was braking, saw in my rearview a honda civic braking hard, locking up the brakes and blue smoke coming from the tires.
The sound of locked up brakes behind you is one of the worst and it seemed forever. I knew it was not going to stop in time. On my left the median was covered by this thick and tall bush, so i could not go there.

I just had enough space to direct the bike between the bush in the median and the car in front of me and went there while i was still braking hard.
Stopped next to the car in front of me on its left side and finally everything came to a stop. I realized all the lanes had stopped because the Civic behind me had stopped a little sideways just right behind the car that was in front of me. There was a big cloud of blue smoke that had to disperse before I could see the driver. A young girl with a a cell phone on her hand. She was visibly terrified. I said nothing to her.

All this happened in about 5 seconds but it seemed much longer. I could see 2 drivers giving me thumbs up and another stopped next to me and told me she was glad i was not hurt and that she could not believe cars stopping like that with NO REASON.

I was surprised i never panicked. I'm proud of myself. When I got to work, went to the empty parking lot on the top floor and practiced more emergency braking.

Good morning to everybody.
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post #2 of 7 Old 08-01-2006, 11:13 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: The Hudson Valley
Posts: 524
Good heads up riding,am really sick of hearing about friggin people talking on cellphones when driving,people are just so selfish these days,most in a big rush and lacking in basic driving skills.It's time they ban cellphones from drivers all together, everyone will be better off,and many people's lives will be spared.

I'll tell you this, no eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn.
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post #3 of 7 Old 08-01-2006, 11:19 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Western PA
Posts: 230
Practice and situational awareness pay off. Good job, glad you didn't become a hood ornament.

You know those signs that say "Fines doubled in work zones?" I wish they'd do the same for cell phones. Better yet, outlaw driver use of cell phones.


Former DL650K6 rider
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post #4 of 7 Old 08-01-2006, 12:00 PM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 157
The cars in front of me speed up and leave a gap in my i speed up to about 55 to fill the gap in front of me
I am really glad you are OK, but I am going to suggest that the decision you refer to above didn't help your situation. I know there are several here that disagree, but "closing the gap" is not a good idea. The gap keeps you from getting rear ended. The more of a gap you have in front of you, the less extreme your braking has to be. Less extreme braking on your part allows the car behind you adequate time to get stopped. Remember that few cars can stop as quickly as you can.

Increased following distances are not just to protect you from rear ending the car in front of you, they are to keep you from being rear ended.

I commend you for the diligence you exercise in practicing your emergency braking, but I would suggest that if you hadn't closed the gap, you might not have needed to use those skills.
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post #5 of 7 Old 08-01-2006, 12:57 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Evanston IL USA
Posts: 38,049
It can be difficult on the nerves or the ego to keep a 2 second following distance in that kind of traffic as vehicles keep filling that gap. It's a lot easier on the wallet and body though which are more deserving of care.

Pat- 2007 DL650A was ridden to all 48 contiguous states. I didn't quite make it to 17,000 miles on the 2012 DL650A.
Nicknames I use to lessen typing, Vee = 2002-2012 DL1000s. Vee2=2014-2016 DL1000s. Wee = 2004-2011 DL650s. Glee = 2012-2016 DL650s

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post #6 of 7 Old 08-01-2006, 01:42 PM
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 553
As my father would say, "That's playing heads-up ball!"

Great moves. Glad you are OK

Moe said, "Are you sure it's okay to fish there?" And Curly said, "Sure, there's a sign that says Fine for Fishing."
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post #7 of 7 Old 08-01-2006, 05:23 PM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: St. Louis, MO
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I won't play the cell phone blame game, and it sounds like it wasn't just her that stopped...if I'm not mistaken...

The important thing here is that you weren't hurt. Glad to hear you're allright. And way to use those emergency skills! :wink:
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