101 Steps to Motorcycle Safety - Traffic Strategies

Traffic Strategies | Equipment Tips | Fitness | Useful Advice And Information | Skills You Should Practice


101 STEPS TO MOTORCYCLE SAFETYThere are certain strategies that could enhance road safety amongst motorcycle enthusiasts. Although traffic conditions and the obstacles faced might differ somewhat from location to location the basics remain the same. The following strategies were devised by Lawrence Grodosky in the United States and the application thereof might in arriving alive!




It's almost always necessary to share the road with other users, but sharing has its limits. To keep the wind in your face and everything else out, here are some useful tips:

1. Time Things - A good pass on a two-lane road takes no more than six seconds. How long does it take to cross an intersection? To accelerate to freeway speed?
2. Estimate Times - How far away is that oncoming car or that blind crest? Knowing could save your butt.
3. Don't Tailgate When the preceding vehicle passes a fixed object count off: "one thousand one... one thousand two..." If you get there before "two" you're following too closely.
4. Project Each Car's Path of Travel See a car poking out of a driveway? Put your bike where it can't reach you.
5. Don't Ride Staggered ln Twistles. or anywhere maneuvering within your lane is likely to become necessary.
6. Late Apex - By starting on the out side of a curve and delaying your turn, you'll not only see farther ahead, you'll increase your space cushion in left hand turns.
7. Watch for Cars "Stacking Up" On two-lane roads - there's always the danger of a car abandoning the pack to pass. Maintain a constant vigil for phantom vehicles and, when you think you've spotted one, move to the right. This creates space as well as conspicuity.
8. Don't Follow Behind Obstructive Vehicles Trucks, vans - anything that's hard to see around also makes you invisible to oncoming cars. Stay way back, or better still, let some passenger cars fill the gap.
9. Avoid Rush Hour - Pilots have to train for each airport. Don't try to tackle a strange metropolis when everyone else is pressed for time.
10. Head Checks - Don't rely on mirrors or peripheral vision. Do one before each lane change.
11. Signal Your Intentions - Two full seconds before lane changes; four seconds for turns.
12. Keep Left Unless Passing.
13. Give Way to Faster Traffic - It's the civilized thing to do.
14. Don't Speed Through Town - Speed is only a factor if you hit some thing... and in town there are all sorts of things to hit.
15. Avoid Bad Drivers - Give wide berth to anyone who is excessively fast or slow, wanders in their lane or changes lanes without signals.
16. Avoid Other Drivers' Blind Spots - Keep back; accelerate when necessary.
17. Look Farther Up the Road - Maintain a 12-second visual lead; search for the exit of each turn.
18. Cover the Front Brake Lever in high-risk areas.
19. ...But Don't Cover With One Finger... or even two fingers unless that's how you practice emergency stops. Once you've started the brake application, you'll need to release in order to add fingers.
20. Check Your Mirrors When You Slow Down - Look for an escape route, too; the guy behind you might not be so alert.
21. The Left Wheel Track of four-wheeled vehicles is your principal lane position... but continually adjust to changing conditions.
22. Beware of Cars Turning Right Across Your Path - Slow down -- see what the driver's going to do. Check your left mirror, then move as far to the left as is practical. If the car turns early -- brake. If the car turns late -‹ accelerate.
[These tips are the brainchild of Mr Lawrence Grodosky and was originally published in the Feb 1996 issue of Rider Magazine]