It could have been me! - Suzuki Volusia Forums : Intruder Volusia and Boulevard Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 10:34 AM Thread Starter
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It could have been me!

I was riding home late last night after having dinner with my brother in the city. Due to construction on my normal exit, I got off an exit earlier and decided to take the secondary roads home. At the stop light at the exit, another motorcyclist pulled up besides me and we acknowledged each other. He was riding a very fine looking HD. When the light turned green, we both took off in the same direction and stayed together for some time. He eventually pulled away from me and I lost sight of him as the road turned, dipped and rose. I was coming up a little hill into the a little village when I heard screeching tires and that unmistakable crashing thud that is so sickening. As I crested the hill, the saw that a car and the motorcycle had crashed into one another and the rider was nowhere to be seen. After stopping and doing a quick survey of the scene, I found the rider 20 feet down the road, behind the car, flat on his back and swearing like a sailor. He was in pain from his hip/leg area, but conscious and insisted in taking his helmet off.

After spending the next hour on the scene, helping the rider, talking to police and the driver of the car (who was absolutely freaking out) and making sure his bike was properly taken care of after he left for the hospital, it was readily apparent what had occurred. The rider had crested the hill and entered the intersection where the car (coming from the other direction) turned left and crossed into his lane. A very typical case of "I didn't see him" type of accident, compounded by a young driver (24) who was distracted by being lost in an unfamiliar area, the darkness of night and the motorcycle's single headlight. It was obvious that the motorcyclist saw what was unfolding quickly and he locked up the brakes in a 20'+ straight line skid. He impacted the car head on and was thrown off the motorcycle, hitting face first into the driver side A-pillar and windshield, then cartwheeling over the car and landing on his left hip/leg and sliding down the road. Interestingly, the motorcycle rider had a skull cap helmet in his saddlebags, but was wearing a full face helmet when he crashed. There is NO DOUBT in my mind, after looking at his helmet and the damage to the car, that the full face helmet saved him from a serious head injury or even death and affirms my decision to ride ATGATT....especially with a full face helmet, regardless of how "uncool" other riders think it is. The rider last night is alive and complaining today, because of the helmet and I would love to follow up to see if he ever uses his beanie again.

I left the scene, went home, woke up my wife and spent a good ten minutes in huge hug, before I could speak again. It is a sobering reminder of how fragile life is and how quickly things can change in an instant and have far-reaching impacts on many lives. Fortunately, the outcome last night was just about as good as it could be, with no loss of life and just a lot of busted up plastic, some road rash, bruises and possibly a broken bone or two.

So be safe out there, ride aware and defensively and always tell those people who you hold dear just how much you love them everyday. You may not get the a chance to tell them later.
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Dying of natural causes is for Wimps!
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 10:44 AM
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Glad to hear he survived.

I had an accident on my Gold Wing, long time ago,

and my full-faced helmet was demolished.

The sides were worn thin so that tells me that my ears would have been a gonner.


The face shield was crushed so no nose left?

The back was also worn thin so brains would have been on road?

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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 10:45 AM
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So glad it wasn't worse and the correct helmet was worn.

I hate night riding with a passion - even night driving in a cage....

And night machinery operation is even worse - driving a tractor around a field.....

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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 10:56 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gene View Post
So glad it wasn't worse and the correct helmet was worn.

I hate night riding with a passion - even night driving in a cage....

And night machinery operation is even worse - driving a tractor around a field.....
I'm not sure if the wife (a nurse) is gonna let me ride at night anymore. She's not a fan of the motorcycle to begin with, but this shock her up pretty badly.



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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 11:10 AM
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So glad it wasn't any worse.
When I'm riding at night , my eyes are always swinging side to side and up and down, looking for something that could take me out. I usually run just a tad slower also to give myself extra time to react.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 11:24 AM Thread Starter
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I'm ordering more lights (both front and rear) for the bike TODAY. I don't care if I look like a Christmas tree coming down the road...I'm doing whatever I can to make sure I'm SEEN. (and still driving like I'm invisible and everyone is out to kill me).
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 11:26 AM
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Riding around here is tough at night, too many deer.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 02:15 PM
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If they arent on the bike with you they are trying to kill you.

Thats what i was taught about cars on the road. Holds true
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 02:29 PM
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Glad to hear the rider was OK.

Based on what you've told me, I would say there were a couple of things he likely did wrong. First, he left you and laid out a long skid mark, which leads me to believe he was out-riding his headlight. Second, he likely didn't anticipate the car turning left in front of him. Whenever I see a situation where a driver is likely to turn left in front of me, I come off the throttle a bit and prep to hit the clutch and brake. Finally, if he skidded that far, he likely hasn't been practicing emergency braking. On that topic, I'm kind of surprised the HD didn't have anti-lock brakes.

Not trying to denigrate the HD rider, I just believe that a good analysis if accidents like this help to serve as learning experiences for the future. Sadly, that's the only value of an accident, learning from it, so if you don't learn something, all you do is lose.

Ride safe guys, and think about this type of stuff before you put a puddin' bowl on your head just so you're legal.

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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 02:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chedell View Post
Riding around here is tough at night, too many deer.
I have a friend die on August 29th on his motorcycle. He was in the Texas hill country, near Kerrville, riding with his son, both on their own HD ultras. My friend, Mike, was in front when a deer ran out, he swerved to miss the deer and went down. His son was able to get stopped safely. He said his dad rolled on the pavement and came to a stop on his side, when he got to him he wasn't responding. He and the first responders tried CPR for 20-30 minutes and couldn't revive him. Mike was a member of my CMA chapter and a Patriot Guard Rider. BTW, what an amazing service those guys provide!!

I sure feel for Mike's son, Bobby, he had to ride back to Dallas alone after witnessing that (about a 5 hr ride with no stops)

Please be careful when you ride at night, keep an eye out for deer. In Mike's case, it was around 4pm, so it sure wasn't dark yet.
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