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Mar 09

Posts: 18

Bikers always the Villains never the Victims

Five bikers have been killed in little over a week in Scotland and no one doubts that it is anything but a tragedy. As bikers we need to take responsibility for our own actions because in most cases if we are involved in an accident we are the ones who are going to face the most serious consequences. It is...

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  • Posted 6 years ago (25 March 2009 12:00)

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Nov 05

Posts: 41

cascadeair says:

And the facts are?

Most traffic fatalities involving motorbikes statistacally in the UK AND the USA, involve an automobile turning in front of a biker and failing to yield the right of way, thus being the CAUSE of the accident. Now, without the listed cause of the accidents being quoted by the police, it would be impossible to know who was at fault, and any implication by the police of fault would be extraordinarily dishonest. Since I believe that most police officers are motivated by a code of integrity, perhaps they were overzealous in reporting these as they did. Perhaps they were frustrated about seeing bikers get creamed and having to clean up the mess and wanted to scare a few folk. Or maybe they just wanted to grab a headline. How about it officer? Care to let us know which it was?

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Dec 03

Posts: 317

hairyMuppet says:

I posted the same story

He seemed to presume that the bikers were at fault.  I was also amazed to see common sense come from RoSPA (I paraphrased) "Bikers are not more dangerous  drivers, just more exposed."  Seems like a fairly sensible statment of fact.

Perhaps MAG Scotland should phone this guy up and ask why he thinks bikers are to blame?  Or, at least, gives the impression that he thinks bikers are to blame.

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Sep 07

Posts: 1100

iancol says:

Bikers are villains or just have a victim complex?

I've read and re-read the piece above and can't find any bias against bikers.  The fact that he was linking the death of bikers to the seasonal increase in bikers on the road doesn't mean he was blaming them.  His advice was perfectly valid.

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Feb 09

Posts: 68

nedd says:

Statistics Offensive

Can`t understand why more isn`t found out about the statistics -  unless (which I don`t believe) the bikers really are at fault so people such as MCN don`t want to risk finding out ????   Surely most accidents to bikers would be crowded road accidents with car drivers being careless.  Neither do I  see anything so bad about a biker wanting to go out and ride near the limit as long as it`s in a quiet place with only him/herself to hurt should they choose -  although in this and any other time I would hope they wouldn`t get damaged.

SO IF THE TRUE STATISTICS WOULD SHOW UP CAR DRIVERS, BAD ROADS ETC AS CAUSE RATHER THAN BAD BIKERS WE NEED TO FIND OUT AND EDUCATE THE PUBLIC AND THE POLICE AND FORCE THEM TO STOP HARASSING BIKERS. Same with the what surely must be a myth (like Judge said in Devon 122 mph case) about if a bike goes out of control what damage it does.  SURELY A BIKE BEING SO MUCH SMALLER AND LIGHTER THAN A CAR IN MOST BIKE ACCIDENTS THE BIKE DOES NEGLIGIBLE DAMAGE COMPARED TO A CAR AND MAYBE OFTEN NO DAMAGE AT ALL TO OTHERS AND PROPERTY. Plus as it`s smaller a good chance misses people and property altogether ?   A boy racer overtaking hitting another car head on can kill occupants of both cars -   how often does a bad overtake from a bike cause a complete head on, rip a car apart and kill  car occupants ?  A much lower percentage I should think or even rare ??.  

So if this is the case it should be publicised -  say "out of every 1000 biker accidents a third party is killed  in 91 cases whereas out of every 1000 car accidents a third party is killed in every 592 cases"  -  I made that up but what if the difference IS that big?   IF IT IS BIKERS ORGANISATIONS / MAGS SHOULD FIND OUT AND PEOPLE SHOULD BE TOLD.     I  don`t like the Police persecuting car drivers either but because of nonsense myths and assumed statistics treating bikers even worse is doubly wrong.  Greetings all, Nedd  

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Aug 08

Posts: 514

KWAKZ750S says:

Stats Offensive

Not too sure about the circumstances with 4 of these, but I have seen the photos from last weeks accident near Kirkconnel in Ayrshire.  The damage that the bike inflicted on the oncoming lorry would suggest that the guy was tanking it a bit, also, there are no signs of any skidmarks on the road, so it looks like the guy has misjudged the bend and crossed the line into the path of the lorry.

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Jul 08

Posts: 190

zephyrdave says:


If you look at the stats for urban areas then it's about 50-60% the 'fault' of drivers - pulilng out without looking or whatever. But if you look at rural roads then it's more like 70-80% the riders' fault - most common crashes are panic breaking in a left hand and going straight on into oncoming traffic or a wall etc or bodging overtakes and having a head on. Often they don't involve another vehicle. Get in touch with whoever compiles the stats for your area and ask them, it'll usually be the road safety unit or camera partnership, use FOI act if necessary but most will just want a formal request.

This isn't what most riders want to hear but it is the sad truth. And yes occassionally there are times that drivers don't leave you anywhere to go but as we all know that drivers don't see us why are we surprised when they do pull out on us?

If you come round a blind bend and there's something in the middle of the road and you hit it because you couldn't stop or avoid it in time then were you going too fast for the distance you could see (regardless of whether you're speeding or not) or will you just assume that it's not your fault becasuse someone stopped after a blind bend?

I don't think the Chief Inspectors comments were out of line, the more bikers that get killed or seriously injured the bigger the stick the government has to beat us with.

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Nov 08

Posts: 879

Own worst enemies?

I've only ridden over the woundrous Cat and Fiddle about half a dozen times, once during a BikeSafe course.  Each time it's been a bit cold, gloomy and damp in places, so there were't all that many other bikers out there, but I've already come across a self inflicted casualty: one misjudgement, a damaged wrist and a damaged 600 sportsbike - an own fault single vehicle collision - fortunately the outcome wasn't very serious, but statistically it won't be recorded.  But it's a symptom, and I dread to think how this extrapolates to the height of Summer.  I'm not sure I want to witness the carnage.

What of all the floral tributes I ride pass at the sides of the road on the Snake Pass and Woodhead, always near tempting bends, how many of these are testimony to the misjudgement of a victim who is also the only villain?

Nedd, I'd love to see some real statistics, properly interpreted, but I don't think it would help your argument.

As for the science of our destructive power, a two up (350kg) Hayabusa at 122 mph (taken as a random example for illustration...) has a kinetic energy of roughly 520 MegaJoules - enough energy to make quite a mess.  A two up family hatch (1600kg) at 60 mph has kinetic energy of around 575 MJ, not so different...  Remember, travelling 41% faster doubles your capacity for destruction, travelling twice as fast quadruples it.  Travelling faster also reduces your chances of being seen in time, and limits your opportunities for avoiding the unforeseen, so the chances of all that kinetic energy being dissipated in a really bad way, rise too.  From my experience a big chunk of the biking polpulation like to travel faster, much faster, and being much freer to overtake, often do so.

As a population I am absolutely certain that we motorcyclists include own worst enemies.  We are collectively much better at accidentally harming or killing ourselves than any other group of vehicle users.  I'm equally certain that speed restrictions and enforcement won't help, but I don't think we can expect any stats to show us in a glowing light.

Perhaps we do need preaching to?



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Mar 09

Posts: 18

My problem is not with us being told by the police to be more careful or being confronted by the stats on how many bikers are killed. Its the matter of how those stats are presented to driving public in the media.

Recent Police statements say nothing about the role  and indeed responsibility that car drivers have in reducing biker deaths. As Spring brings out the fair weather bikers and we all ride more and more to the limit of our machines as conditions improve, we as bikers do need to be reminded that if our machine or riding is not up to scratch it could end in a funeral, our own.

In addition car drivers need to be told there are more bikes on the road and they need to take more care at junctions and on country roads or they could cause a funeral and it will be the bikers. There seems little understanding on the part of many car drivers as to how bikes handle. I constantly have cars on motorways pulling into my safe braking space or when I position myself on the near side of the road for right hand bend using the space I have created to overtake me. I am pretty sure that those drivers have no clue the problems that their driving causes for me on a bike in certain conditions because I never see any publicity apart from the Think Bike stuff explaining how they as car drivers can endanger motorcyclists.

So yes lets take responsibility as bikers but lets also have the police telling car drivers about their responsbilities.

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