How many of have been hit by a car on a bike...

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by commanderroach1999, Sep 24, 2016.

  1. How many of u have been in a biking accident with a car, and how many of u have been close to one, and who hasn't? My mom is worried I will get hit and killed by a car while riding on busy roads. Any of u have anything to say to ease her worries?

  2. Frankenstein

    Frankenstein Active Member

    I was hit by a tow truck and bent my front wheel to hell and almost snapped the fork off, the truck driver was nice enough to tow my bike and drive me to the hospital free of charge.

    I was side swiped and left a huge gash in the guys black paint, his registration was expired so he gave me a hundred bucks to not call the police, all I lost was a reflector.

    I was almost hit a number of times by people who don't know what a stop sign is for.

    Dropped my bike on snow twice at low speeds.

    Most recently had a plastic cup try to kill me.

    I was wearing a helmet during each and every incident, and I love riding my bike!
  3. Frankenstein

    Frankenstein Active Member

    I think it's safe to say you won't get killed.
  4. Yeah but I think u just proved ur point that it is dangerous.
  5. Steve Best

    Steve Best Active Member

    Your mom is right.
    Especially at your age.
    Death and lifelong injury are always a possibility on a bicycle and motorcycle.
    You have to be a super visible and defensive rider.
    And NO loud pipes do not save lives. Bright colours and safe driving do.
    james65 and Holly like this.
  6. FurryOnTheInside

    FurryOnTheInside Active Member

    Always assume that they haven't seen you. It means you often stop unnecessarily when drivers do intend to give way, but it is difficult to know since they often look right at you and still pull out into your path.
    Car drivers pull out of petrol stations etc and into/across the cycle lane even when there is no gap in the traffic. So they just stop and block the lane. They will do this when you are too close to stop in time. It's like they can't see anything but other cars and don't see or care they are across a lane of cycle traffic.
    They also turn (left in USA) through a gap in a line of static traffic and across the cycle lane, often when there is nowhere to go and then they stop, again blocking the cycle lane.
    Be prepared to jump over the handlebars, somersault through the air over the car and land on the other side of the car. It happens.
    I hate cycling on the road unless it's very quiet (usually at night) and prefer to use traffic free cycle paths, but these often run beside the road and have junctions and the above mentioned petrol stations etc with traffic crossing them.
  7. Moms right!
    Ive been hit twice.
    Numerous other close calls.
    And Im NOT the idiot you see going against traffic, blowing through stop signs with no headlight or tail light either!
    I consider my self very experienced.
    35 years of motorcycling.
    Riding a motorized bicycle is more dangerous than motorcycling because generally speaking, you are slower than traffic, so always getting passed.
    People in cars are texting, putting on make-up, speeding, adjusting the radio, looking at the newspapaer, the list goes on.
    My advice...

    1. Travel the least busy streets as possible.
    2. Use headlight and tail light as much as possible.
    3. Even if its against the law, I like to at least go the speed limit. Constantly getting passed is very dangerous.
    4. Wear bright colors.
    5. Although I don't use a helmet, its not a bad idea.
    6. Watch out for opposing traffic turning left in front of you.
    7. Crap happens fast. REAL FAST. By the time you realize what just happened, the driver at fault is usually LONG gone.
    If your lucky enough to survive a close call, a video camera is an excellent way to review footage, and get license plate numbers of incident.
    Holly and Tom from Rubicon like this.
  8. Jonj57

    Jonj57 Member

    I've been hit 2 times once while I was in a cross walk omw to school, always assume they aren't looking at you and always assume they have a low IQ. Roads are always dangerous when others are on them, but you can avoid most of it by being smart and being visable.
  9. gary55

    gary55 Active Member

    Your mom is right. Both of mt experiences were form people turning right in front of me with no signal leaving no time to stop. It taught me a lesson to always be alert to what vehicles could unexpectedly do, and give them a wide enough birth to do it. Sometimes I'll get where I'm going a little slower, but a lot healthier.
    Holly likes this.
  10. KCvale

    KCvale Motorized Bicycle Vendor

    Hi Mom, I am 57, have an adult son, and been building motorized bikes for 6 years.
    Does you son know the rules of the road?
    Enough to pass a drivers license test?
    If not, stop now, he ain't ready.

    If he is traffic savvy at 17 then it's just a matter of remaining as safe as possible while riding.
    First and foremost is GOOD BRAKES, NO motorrized bike is safe with just a rear coaster brake, heck I am putting dual disc brakes on the bikes I build these days but regardless it's needs a front brake.

    Number 2 on my list is a strobing front light for daylight riding.
    It makes everyone you are headed towards take a second look and see you are going much faster than they expected and wait for you.

    Other than that don't be an idiot riding.
    Stay on the right, don't ride on the sidewalk, and for your moms sake always wear a helmet and glasses when riding, only idiots don't.
  11. butre

    butre Well-Known Member

    they are dangerous, and you probably will be seriously injured on it at some point. fortunately, you're young enough to spring back from most injuries. most of us here don't have that luxury.

    just be sure to have at least a front disc brake. preferably front and rear.
  12. Frankenstein

    Frankenstein Active Member

    There is nothing whatsoever in this post I can disagree with, very wise words honestly.

    You could probably benefit from getting your mom's perspective not on the dangers of the road, because let's face it, fearful mothers are always irrational about danger, my own mother insists my bike is a death machine even though she owned/rode a CROTCH ROCKET at least for half her life.

    Her perspective on how YOU drive on the road is what you need to consider. She wouldn't blatantly lie to you about how you drive, if she thinks you need to improve a bit in a particular skill then it's probably true. If she honestly doesn't think you can drive in a safe manner well... She's probably right, motherly instinct is a hard case to argue against, I've seem my mother right more times than I can count, even after I thought she was dead wrong, go figure.

    Do you have a driver's license yet? If so then great, now adjust your driving style to meet the needs of a vehicle that is inherently slower, harder to see, and less looked for compared to other vehicles. Now remove the large steel box the protected you while driving, remember the steel box also made you seen 99% of the time you were seen.

    Have you practiced slowing down quickly while ensuring that no drivers are too close behind? Cars low down slower, have brake signals, and the sudden stop is noticed quicker by drivers vs the faster, non-signaled, and less easily noticed stops that a bike makes. Believe it or not the PA motorcycle handbook (read and know your local motorcycle training handbook) says that when stopping you should give extra distance between you and the person in front, because people behind you might not notice, and they will rear-end you, and people in front backing up might not see you either. You need extra room in both cases to escape danger.

    Turn signals can be a lifesaver, it proudly shows your intention to people behind you that you might not even see, of your bike hasn't got turn signals then your options are making wild hand signals while looking back a half dozen times while trying to change lanes and checking mirrors (if you have them) or almost getting hit if the driver sees you in time and uses a horn to let you know your too close. If they don't then you just get hit. Luckily mirrors and turn signals are required on the steel box variety of vehicles, so if you have a license at least your used to using them, if you don't have them on a bike consider yourself a handicap on the road since you are actually relearning how to signal and look at things properly.

    I don't know what state you're in, but most require helmets for people under 18. In PA individuals riding a motorcycle under the age of 18 who have not passed an advanced motorcycle safety course (basically everyone except the prodigies) are REQUIRED to wear a helmet. Local ordnances might require minors to wear helmets on bicycles. I wear a helmet always except for 2 circumstances in which I feel like I can do without, both are trips only a couple blocks long, but considering how I was recently drop kicked by a plastic cup I'm reevaluating that theory. I do however always wear eye protection. Bugs, cigarettes, and small stones traveling at 70mph are likely to be my least favorite things to get in my eyes while operating a vehicle that takes 2 hands and extra vigilance to operate. Good thing steel box vehicles require windshields. They don't let anything past, sunglasses can still let a bee up past the lens so expect the unexpected.

    Most states you get a learners permit at 16, if you're 17 and living in a most-state type of state then you will have nearly 2 years of driving experience. Did you fail your driving test at all? If so you just might not be ready to safely use a motorized bike. Do you tend to roll through stop signs? Find yourself riding up one way roads? Looking once before changing lanes? Assuming drivers see you when they look right at you? Not using hand signals to let people know your intentions? If you answered ANY of these questions wrongly and you do know the right answers, then you should reconsider riding a motorized bike until you really ready to ride among 2 ton vehicles made of steel and can squish you flat in just a moment's notice. I saw people who can't even really read a sign at the dmv getting drivers licenses. I was at counter 8 talking to the lady, a man walks up and starts asking if this was counter 5.. Now obviously she's busy with me so he must not of seen me standing there. And then there's the big sign above the counter and under that says counter 8, each of the 14 counters have corresponding signs, so he much not have seen the 27 signs (I was standing in front of the lower sign) either. Then there's a little red light up sign above each counter that shows the ticket number that the counter is serving, he missed that one too.

    And I'm about to go out and drive on the same road as him, he couldn't even see 28 signs and a person while sitting down in a plastic chair.

    Think you're ready for the road? Rethink it and be damn sure you can because it only takes one idiot who can't see for shit to not use HIS signals and pull right out in front of you, luckily he has a sturdy steel box to protect him so safety was the last thing on his mind while he was arguing about something on his cell phone.
  13. Frankenstein

    Frankenstein Active Member

    Once you can tell that that guy would never see you well before he was close to making a turn (most people wont) then you'll know how to drive on the road as a bike. You should also learn that cars make great shields. If you make traffic maneuvers with parts of traffic then people will end up avoiding you. Basically if you travel "with" another car when being by yourself would be hairy then you'll find that since the other cars are waiting for "your" car to get out of the way before they continue. So while it might seem kinda idiotic to travel close to another vehicle in a bad intersection, the fact that the car will probably make it through safer than you can leads you to stick with the better choice. Just keep a plan B should something go wrong.
    Nate888 likes this.
  14. LRSimons

    LRSimons New Member

    All good advice.

    I would add that you definitely need to wear a good helmet- a DOT certified motorcycle helmet. A half helmet is fine for general use. It's the cheapest insurance you'll ever buy.

    If you look at motorcycle fatality statistics, you will see that (IIRC) a vast majority of deaths could have been avoided by not doing stupid things, and wearing a helmet.

    Don't forget the safety glasses. A bug or piece of gravel in the eye can be as deadly as a distracted driver.

  15. hazmat

    hazmat New Member

    first learn a bicycle if you can ride down stairs on a bicycle and still have majority control and slam your brakes and swing the bike if you got that good vision and treat all traffic like drunken monkeys you should be fine if you like your brain wear helmet if you enjoy moving arms use pads or leather and denim and try and see the future could help save you alot of pain
  16. Frankenstein

    Frankenstein Active Member

    Go with Snell certified helmet honestly. Dot certified is basically put a bowling ball in a helmet and push it off a table, if the helmet survived then it passes.

    Seriously it's that bad of a test.

    Lol on the drunk monkeys comment.
  17. butre

    butre Well-Known Member

    half of the "dot" helmets are just cheap chinese junk that never got tested that they put a dot sticker on because it's not illegal to do. if it says snell, it's probably actually snell.
  18. JunkyardDog

    JunkyardDog Active Member

    I have never crashed a bike (bicycle, motorized bicycle, scooter, or motorcycle on the street. BUT. I have had about a zillion close calls. I started riding a dirtbike off road at age 8. When I got my motorcycle license at 16 and got a street bike, my mother wrote me off. She had already decided I was going to get killed. It was almost 2 years before she finally decided that I MIGHT not get killed.

    But that was back in 1976. Things were way different back then. Riding on the street was much safer. There was less traffic, and very few crazed speeders and red light runners, and so called "drivers" that are in such a hurry they don't look before pulling out in front of you. And of course there were no cell phones, which are the number one cause of accidents in the U.S. by far. Speeding and reckless or aggressive are next. Drunk driving is now way down on the list.

    I have heard combat veterans compare riding a bike in traffic to being in combat, except on a bike you are hopelessly outnumbered by a much larger, faster, and more powerful enemy. You literally have to ride like everybody in a motor vehicle is out to get you, because whether they actually are or not, the results are pretty much the same. You need to be aware of your surroundings at all times, learn to spot potential problems, and plan a way out, before anything ever happens. Don't put yourself in a situation you can't get out of (not always possible, but try) Always assume the worst.

    On a motorcycle, where you ride with the traffic, the two biggest causes of accidents are car drivers turning or pulling out in front of you, or being hit from behind while stopped at a red light. On a bicycle, in the bike lane (and all bicycles, motorized or not, should always be ridden in the bike lane if there is one) DO NOT try to keep up with cars. Ride the same as you would on a pedal bike. Anyway, in a bike lane, your biggest danger is going to come from your right, as you pass streets, parking lots, any place a car can pull out from. Just like most drivers run stop signs, and don't stop until they are 20 feet PAST the sign, many don't stop to look for traffic until they have already crossed the bike lane.

    This happened to me so many times back when I rode a pedal bike that I started carrying a hammer on my belt. It didn't take long for someone to pull this stunt, missing me by inches. I jumped off my bike and headed toward the driver with the hammer in my hand. He panicked, threw his Honda CRV into reverse, floored it, crashed into a brick wall, which pretty much totaled the back of that Honda, then took off into traffic, almost getting hit by someone who swerved hard to miss him. I continued to ride on that street, and never saw that vehicle again. I still often carry a hammer, and I have now set up one of those super bright flashing strobe lights so it points right.

    I'm not going to recommend you carry a hammer, but I do recommend using a right pointing strobe light, as well as one that points forward. Wear a bright colored reflective shirt of vest. I have always worn a full face helmet on a motorcycle and a scooter, but have never worn a helmet on a bicycle. I rode a million miles on bicycles back in the '60s and '70s, before there was such a thing as a "bicycle helmet" I crashed a lot because I was always trying to do some kind of stunt, I got a lot of sprains and rash, but that's it. I almost never ride my motorized bike over 10 mph, which is around normal pedal bike speed. I am definitely into safety, to a point, but some things simply cross the line. And to me bicycle helmets are one of them. Does anyone actually think one of those silly recycled styrofoam cups is going to protect them? And while you wear armor on a motorcycle, bicyclists wear spandex. Yeah, lots of protection there.

    But, no matter what you do, the fact is riding a bike in traffic is dangerous. In today's traffic it is extremely dangerous. I just saw some new statistics (and no I'm not a big believer in statistics) that said that in the same amount of miles, motorcyclists crashed more than 15 times as often as car drivers. So you have to decide whether it is worth it. To me it is. Here is a quote from Nick Ienatsch, former motorcycle magazine editor and roadracer. "I refuse to believe in a risk free society where the thrill of living is traded for the safety of existence" I have lived my life by this after reading it nearly 40 years ago. And I am still here.
    Nate888 likes this.
  19. KCvale

    KCvale Motorized Bicycle Vendor

    And last but not least is how good your bike and kit parts are to begin with, and then how well they are put together.

    In my experience you are more likely to get hurt from a crap build breaking while riding than traffic.
    A $100 kit on a $100 bike put together by a noobie using crude tools can be death trap just due to parts failing and poor construction.
    For example, I spend ~$350 on parts for my least expensive no frills direct drive 2-stroke builds.

    I don't build many of those these days, I am more into making easy to operate, reliable, safe motorized bikes for those that aren't building to a budget, they want something good like this regardless of the cost.


    I am quite comfortable on builds like this, and ride with traffic under 40mph.
    With gears that little ~50cc jumps off the line and can keep up.
    And then a front shock for those pesky pot holes and speed bumps.
    The balloon tires with 3" wide tread add a bit more suspension and a nice footprint on the road which really helps those dual disc brakes to stop it in a hurry, like 15' from wide open to a dead stop.
    Front and rear strobe lights along with how cool it looks and go's, I don't go unnoticed on the road, it's actually quite the opposite, everybody notices me, especially when I am sitting up straight and comfortable with a big smile, and slowly pedaling backwards just for effect ;-}

    You don't need to go out all like that, just don't skimp on whats important as you will regret it later, possibly in more than 1 way.
  20. Frankenstein

    Frankenstein Active Member

    My precise point.