Avoiding cagers turning left - Page 2 - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
Riding Proficiency Tips and suggestions for improving the rider's safety skills and riding techniques

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post #11 of 44 Old 09-16-2018, 09:32 AM
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Where I live (south central PA) it isn't overrun with people so less folks on the road lower chance of encountering this type of thing. Drive 20 miles east and you hit the tourist trap called Gettysburg. 1000's of folks driving around in their SUV's loaded with bored to death kids looking everywhere but where they are going. They also believe the rules of the road do not apply to them and will just stop, swerve to the side of the road or just park in the middle of the road and go view another field that looks like the other 10,000 fields they already looked at. In all fairness once out of the car they walk around like zombies unaware of their surroundings so you have to watch for them stepping out into the traffic flow.

The best way I have found to avoid them is avoid them in totality. I stay away from this area especially in the summer. If I have to ride around this area during peak tourist season I pretend I'm riding in Manhattan and try to stay hyper aware of my surroundings.
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post #12 of 44 Old 09-16-2018, 10:37 AM
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I swear by my hi-vis jacket. A foggy morning I was in the car and ready to pull out on a main road when I got a glimpse of a rider emerging from the fog. His hi-vis jacket is what caught my eye first. I believe I would have pulled right out in front of him otherwise. I also use the SMIDSY and wear a white helmet. Don't flash your lights!!!
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post #13 of 44 Old 09-16-2018, 10:42 AM
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I think the SMIDSY maneuver is a good one. There is another video on YouTube that shows that maneuver from the cager's point of view and it really is striking. That video points out a couple of optical illusions cagers have. One is that a bike having a single headlight or two very close together makes it look farther away than it really is. The second is that being a smaller vehicle, it is harder for cagers to judge the speed of the oncoming bike. If you look at it from the cager's view, both of these are really apparent in that video. I'm in no way excusing bad driving on the part of cagers, just trying to have a strategy to keep myself alive. My strategy is, in order of priority:
  1. Assume the car WILL pull out in front of me. In fact, in all my riding, I assume every moving hunk of metal around me will try to hit me at all times, if they can, and I'm constantly calculating two things: How can I position myself so he can't hit me even if he tries, AND what I am going to do when he tries to anyway. FWIW, that does not make me feel nervous or paranoid. Once I got used to thinking that way, riding is actually less stressful.
  2. I have fingers on the front brake lever and toes above the rear brake pedal, ready to go. I also have ABS, which is really great on the "Strom." I took a state police rider safety course recently and the instructor could not believe how fast I could stop in the panic stop exercise. At first he thought I wasn't doing the approach at the speed I was supposed to. Once he realized I was, he was like, "I've never seen a bike stop so fast."
  3. I approach these situations at, or slightly below, the speed limit to give myself and the cager more reaction time.
  4. I have headlight bulbs that are rated at 50% brighter than stock, but I never do the high beam thing for the reason mentioned. It might indicate that I'm giving the cager permission to pull out.
  5. I wear an all yellow helmet and a mostly yellow jacket for better visibility.
  6. I have a Nautilus 120 db horn and I have my thumb on the button anytime I am near someone who could try to cut me off.
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post #14 of 44 Old 09-16-2018, 11:06 AM
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Some folks are real horn blasters. I'm not sure where the horn button is on the bike cus I never use it. I even have one of the loud ones I haven't mounted on the bike.
I'm also willing to give way to a larger, more solid vehicle. I don't insist on my position in the lane. It also doesn't bother and upset me that there a dummies out there that do the wrong thing in my presence.
A short distance down the road it won't matter a bit.
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post #15 of 44 Old 09-16-2018, 12:36 PM
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When I see a car waiting to turn, I slow down to below 40 mph (indicated). This can create another problem if there is a car behind me, as their following distance tends to shrink. Seems like a no win scenario.
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post #16 of 44 Old 09-16-2018, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by leximon View Post
When I see a car waiting to turn, I slow down to below 40 mph (indicated). This can create another problem if there is a car behind me, as their following distance tends to shrink. Seems like a no win scenario.
I put a brighter bulb in my taillight and also added a second tail light that flashes five times before it goes solid. That seems to help, because a flashing light may indicate that I have put on my emergency flashers. But of course, what you say is still a problem. I figure if I am going to get rear-ended, I'd at least want to have it happen at a slower speed.
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post #17 of 44 Old 09-16-2018, 05:21 PM
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I try to remember while on the road; You can be right and still be dead. That's one of the great ironic aspects of riding. So much mental energy is consumed by ultra-awareness and survival instinct, I never have time to worry over my mundane problems and find the experience totally relaxing and the best mental therapy money can buy. It simplifies things for the caveman inside me.

If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much space.
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post #18 of 44 Old 09-17-2018, 03:04 PM
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Yep, do NOT flash your high beam or they will take it as a "go ahead and kill me" signal. Turn it on and leave it if it might help.

Honking is worse than completely useless for a car in front of you. They won't hear a thing, and you've just wasted valuable microseconds and brainpower diddling your horn button instead of braking and maneuvering. Horns are for people next to you, or maybe errant pedestrians.

A left turning phone poker got me in late 2013 thanks to a rare triple-quadruple fakeout with a double twist. She stopped and started several times then finally decided to try and drive through me.

I will say the dual headlights on the Vee do make some small difference in average murder attempts vs. a single headlight.
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post #19 of 44 Old 09-17-2018, 06:20 PM
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Ride like everybody in a cage is trying to kill you. Watch those front wheels like someone else said. Wheels or hubcaps have a design in them. Watch for their slow rotation. Also, ride with your high beam on. If this makes people squint, so be it. At least they are seeing you.

I been down around Houston Texas where the sun shines most of the time.

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post #20 of 44 Old 09-17-2018, 08:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Buzzzer View Post
I usually get ready to slow down, cover my brakes and watch the leading wheel of the vehicle. I don't bother looking at the person driving the said vehicle since many times they've looked right at me and pulled out anyway. If that front wheel moves I start flashing my high beams and hitting the brakes.

"Ride like everyone is out to kill you" is a good way of looking at riding a motorcycle...
Yes! I never trust the person behind the wheel that is looking at me. To me they are more dangerous than the person looking to the right that obviously doesn't see me coming.

The person I think is looking at me might be looking at the vehicle a couple of hundred feet behind me, but I don't know that. The one thing I do know is if that left front tire starts to turn I need to take action and be prepared.
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