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Posted on Wednesday, May 13, 2009 - 01:18 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Custodian/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Custodian/Admin only)

As many of you can attest, road construction zones can be terrible places for a motorcycle, and can test all the tools you have in your rider tool box. I'd like to hear more about experiences any of you have had since it is that season again.

Meanwhile, here's an experience I got thru unscathed yesterday that I want to share with you as a reminder of how a simple ten minute commute on a familiar road could be a real nightmare if risk is not managed.

Yesterday afternoon, I was riding my city-x home from teaching a sidecar/trike class. I was definitely a little tired, as the 95 degree heat tends to drain even the most resilient coach after 5.5 hours, but it was a fun class and I was feeling pretty good overall about life in general. It is usually a pretty relaxing ride home on the newly paved divided road, but I was a little preoccupied by a slow moving thunderstorm I hoped to beat, and specifically the straight up and down bolts of lightning surrounding me. I noticed a 4 or 5 year old Hyundai that was drifting a bit in its lane and when I got close to it, I saw why: the jerkwad driver was too busy TEXTING to pay attention to the road. I slowed, let her go past, and lost sight of the car until after the point where traffic started merging into a construction zone where it went from 3 lanes to 2. I slowed, increased the space cushion in front of me, stayed in the middle lane as the left lane was preparing to end. Next thing I know, about six cars up, one car or two at a time in front of me started slamming on brakes in a domino response to some obvious conflict in front. I covered my controls, and before I realized what was happening, the joker in the right lane, almost directly next to me, switches to the lane right in front of me, no signal lights. My space cushion must've looked inviting, and I do not know if he saw me or not, but there he was. I braked hard, smokin' rubber hard, and locked up the rear tire. I glanced in the left mirror, made sure my escape lane was clear, and the bike started to fishtail a bit, but I used that to my advantage to narrowly miss the rear bumper of joker dude. When I straightened and stopped, I moved slowly up, and guess who I saw? Texting girl, pulled off to the side!!! She was the apparent cause of all this nonsense.

Fortunately, I made it thru unscathed, due to a few things on my side at that exact moment:

* Training as a ridercoach
* Dirtbike experience (fishtailing can be your friend and is quite fun in the right environment, just not necessarily on the highway in traffic)
* Constant searching for one escape lane if not 2
* Decent gear
* Perhaps a guardian angel, if y'all believe in that type of thing

Things I need to do/could have done to improve my skills and further enjoy my riding career:
*Focus my attention only on the traffic, and not be distracted by the lightning (very hard for me to do, lightning freaks me out but that story is for another thread)
*Practice my braking every single day
*Drank an energy drink before I left the school. I was well hydrated, but the extra carb boost may have sharpened me up even more.
*Worn my Oxtars every day while riding on the road. I was complacent (i.e. lazy) and was wearing my harley mid-calf range boots because it was hot and only a ten minute ride home. Not a bad option, good soles, but no armour. I swear the first thing I thought when the brakes locked was "OMG I'm wearing my RANGE BOOTS!"

Bottom line, we can all improve. Please be safe out there!!!

BeLinda AKA Coach Twisty

(Message edited by fltwistygirl on May 13, 2009)

(Message edited by fltwistygirl on May 13, 2009)
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Posted on Sunday, July 12, 2009 - 11:35 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Custodian/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Custodian/Admin only)

I woulda punched it past all the retards.
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Posted on Monday, August 01, 2011 - 09:58 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Move Post (Custodian/Admin Only) Ban Poster IP (Custodian/Admin only)

the cell phone (and all it other functions) are such a great value to us all.

and a great danger to us all.

so far here in California one can not talk on a phone, text on a phone, can not use the radio on a nextel, but it is ok to surf the web while driving.
more new anti freedom laws coming to your state soon.
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