Motorcycle Forum banner

The biggest killer of motorcyclists

6566 Views 76 Replies 32 Participants Last post by  hogcowboy
To summarize. The three deaths below in Lincoln Nebraska were caused by left turning drivers violating motorcyclist right of way. The 1981 Hurt report had cited this as the most common cause of the most common type of motorcycle accident, collision with another vehicle. It seems that little has changed.

Bottom line: We talk a lot about driving defensively, but if you don't have a plan for surviving potential left turning drivers at an intersection or a vehicle planning to turn left off the roadway into your path other than hoping for the best, you're running a terrible risk of becoming a statistic. This MUST be an active safety action by the cyclist, it CANNOT be left to chance.

My own solution has always been to

Slow down- Reduce speed to the point where you can survive an impact.
Try to make eye contact with the driver- then proceed with extreme caution at a speed that gives you time to respond or reduces the consequences of a crash.
Cover the Brakes- and have a plan

Curious to hear how others manage this high-risk situation.

Lincoln man charged with motor vehicle homicide for crash that killed motorcyclist | Crime and Courts |

Lincoln teen pleads no contest in crash that killed motorcycle rider | Crime and Courts |

Lincoln teen charged with motor vehicle homicide for crash with motorcyclist near UNL campus | Crime and Courts |

Reference: The Hurt Report, 1981
Article source: The Hurt Study Summary - webBikeWorld

  1. Approximately three-fourths of these motorcycle accidents involved collision with another vehicle, which was most usually a passenger automobile

  2. In the multiple vehicle accidents, the driver of the other vehicle violated the motorcycle right-of-way and caused the accident in two-thirds of those accidents.

  3. Deliberate hostile action by a motorist against a motorcycle rider is a rare accident cause. The most frequent accident configuration is the motorcycle proceeding straight then the automobile makes a left turn in front of the oncoming motorcycle.
See less See more
  • Like
Reactions: 3
1 - 3 of 77 Posts
To miss a spinning car on the track, they say to head straight at it & it won't be there when you get there.

I've been wondering if I should aim toward a left-turner's right (his right) headlight just in case.
If I aim toward the white line, I would have to swerve around the entire vehicle (broadside) or take an off road adventure (at an intersection where there are likely to be other things to hit)
If I aim toward his right, I only have to split vehicles (maybe) on the double yellow.

I also wear the most obnoxiously loud high-vis vest you have ever seen.;)
(Not sure it was mentioned in the preceding posts)
  • Like
Reactions: 2
What position would you rather have?
Riding fast, I'll take B
Riding at a speed where I can effectively swerve, I'm thinking A
Brown Rectangle Wood Font Handwriting
See less See more
I like A most of the time. In town where there are many cross roads and entrances I slow down!
I like riding in position A also as well as at least one LONG car length back. (left cager tire track)
I can see around the vehicle ahead of me and oncoming traffic can see me. (if they look)

If somebody gives me the creeps, I'll Smidsy by touching the center line and returning to position A.
It often gets their attention when you swerve toward them and I think I stand a better chance of a panic swerve to the left.
My bike doesn't accelerate that well so beating a left turner through the intersection is not really high on my preferred avoidance maneuvers. (I do see it used on YouTube a lot)
  • Like
Reactions: 1
1 - 3 of 77 Posts