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Old 08-22-2017, 03:31 PM   #1
sa101
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it happened on 237

Always planned that I need to do "X" if the car in the next lane does "Y" but it happened and on one of those days when I was actually taking it easy splitting lanes on 237 W. Aug 15th, 10:20am, speed was about 30 - 35 mph. Red lexus sedan in the center lane of freeway wanted to jump onto the left fast lane did not see me already in blind spot and merged. Rear quarter panel hit my right side and went down, tumbling for about 20 -25 feet and every flip I was trying to see if I am out of the fast lane so not to get hit by any car behind.

Me: No broken bones on xray. Most injury are from direct impact of knee on the pavement during tumble. Jacket, boots, helmet, gloves and hard shell backpack protected me and laptop.

Bike: Insurance is saying its total loss.

Other Driver:Stayed at scene most likely accepted to be at fault for not doing a head check , as her insurance is paying for everything.

What I would do different:

1) Big mistake not wearing protective bottom gear. Jeans did not rip so skin is intact but if had a padded pants it would have almost not hurt at all. So full touring suit next time.
2) Everyone around is suggesting to cut motorcycle commute, which I might as its a bit intense overall but wont stop altogether.

Just wanted to put it out there as a fact of what happened not really looking for anything but suggestion or tips or just shout out from fellow riders are always welcome.
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Old 08-22-2017, 03:58 PM   #2
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Where you occupying the fast lane or lane splitting? If you were in the fast lane you should try to put your front wheel with their front tire this way they are aware that someone is there.
If your front tire is matching the rear tire this is called the death spot and it's very dangerous to be in.

Last edited by Paulo666; 08-22-2017 at 03:59 PM..
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Old 08-22-2017, 04:11 PM   #3
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Ithx for the input, yes I was lane splitting and passing the car that hit me.
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Old 08-22-2017, 05:12 PM   #4
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Glad you're (pretty much) okay and sorry about the bike.

I don't commute and wear shorts every day in Summer, since I have to change to ride I just throw on my leather bottoms instead of jeans.

And yeah, gotta watch out for cars moving into "vacant" spots when splitting. Almost got me, too.
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Old 08-23-2017, 06:32 AM   #5
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First off, glad you're ok!

Was this in commute traffic?
If so, pay attention when you're passing an empty space in a lane where someone might want to go, especially the fast/carpool lane.

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Old 08-23-2017, 06:49 AM   #6
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Good advice above. A gap creates danger.
Sometimes you can tell the car driver is aware other times not.

Glad you are good.
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Old 08-23-2017, 09:06 AM   #7
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Bummer, but glad you're *mostly* okay.

Since this is crash analysis: Gaps in traffic while lane splitting are always the "extreme caution" point. Looking far ahead to see the subtle movements of a driver or car is imperative to prepare for evasive moves once you're near the gap.
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Old 11-13-2017, 09:13 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Paulo666 View Post
Where you occupying the fast lane or lane splitting? If you were in the fast lane you should try to put your front wheel with their front tire this way they are aware that someone is there.
If your front tire is matching the rear tire this is called the death spot and it's very dangerous to be in.
The above is right on; they will never see you.

Also as others mentioned, approaching a "GAP" between cars is extremely hazardous. The last few cars in the gap are thinking it would be faster in the next lane to left. THEY jump frequently.

Stay safe my friends...
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Old 11-13-2017, 12:12 PM   #9
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You seem to already know what happened and what needs to be fixed so good luck with the recovery
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Old 11-14-2017, 03:49 PM   #10
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Curious how big the gap was, the bigger it is, the more dangerous.

We've had multiple gap accidents lately, fortunately nobody seriously hurt. I'v begun to think that gaps are a place where there aren't good avoidance strategies. The best one I have been able to come up with is to be ready to dodge into the gap itself, which depends on a relatively low delta, because you will have to brake and swerve, which isn't a good idea unless the braking part is pretty mild.

I also think lights and pipes help, but pipes don't do much if the delta is high, ppl need time to realize you are there, but hanging in the blind spot to wait for that is bad too, again gaps don't seem to have very good strategies.

One thing I do is if the gap is large enough I swerve into the gap proactively, probably makes me more annoying to the cars though.
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Old 11-14-2017, 10:46 PM   #11
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yeah thanks everyone for suggestions, I know the problem with "Gaps" as have been commuting on and off for few years now. And also if the gap is long enough I do swerve in the open spot, also helps in case a more spirited/skilled rider wants to pass by.

Anyways I am back to riding now commuting occasionally though.Bone bruising took 2.5 months to fully heal. Now I am more cautious, not that I wasnt before but you know there is always chance to improve.

Take it easy folks.
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Old 11-15-2017, 12:25 PM   #12
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Gaps are definitely something to be especially aware of, but just because there is not a gap does not mean a car will not try to create one. This is especially true in stop and go traffic, when there is very little space between cars and people want to merge.

My priority of focus when splitting is, in order: 1) In front looking for blinkers, cars that are drifting slightly, slightly turned tires, looking into car mirrors to see the drivers heads. 2) On my sides as I am passing gap, or if I feel uneasy about a car for any reason. 3) Behind so I do not piss people off.

I sometimes catch myself not paying attention to my sides often enough, or looking behind too much, or paying attention to in front way to much.

It can be difficult to pick up a merging car on your side in time to prevent an accident, because it is in your peripherals (sp?).
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Old 11-15-2017, 12:43 PM   #13
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My priority of focus when splitting is, in order: 1) In front looking for blinkers, cars that are drifting slightly, slightly turned tires, looking into car mirrors to see the drivers heads. 2) On my sides as I am passing gap, or if I feel uneasy about a car for any reason. 3) Behind so I do not piss people off.


What's your usual speed differential?

At that speed, how far ahead do you scan for signs of a lane change?

How does your scan range change at a higher differential?
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Old 11-15-2017, 01:52 PM   #14
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I'v begun to think that gaps are a place where there aren't good avoidance strategies. The best one I have been able to come up with is to be ready to dodge into the gap itself, which depends on a relatively low delta, because you will have to brake and swerve, which isn't a good idea unless the braking part is pretty mild.
I routinely fade into the gap to create space between me and the car beside me. By doing so, I have a little more time if he comes over and I'm already angling away from him so an evasive move takes a smaller direction change.
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Old 11-20-2017, 12:29 PM   #15
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What's your usual speed differential?

At that speed, how far ahead do you scan for signs of a lane change?

How does your scan range change at a higher differential?
Probably a dead thread, but if there is still life, responses below:

1) I split about a 10 mph delta, up to a speed of 40. Typically. I take it pretty easy I would guess, more than most?. I split a lot, so I decrease my chances at every opportunity.

2) How far ahead I scan varies, from pretty far -to- right on my side. I look for blinkers pretty far ahead (maybe 4-5 cars ahead?), I look for the car drivers head movement, in mirrors or otherwise, a little closer (maybe 2-3 cars ahead), I look for turning wheels -and- the distance between lane and wheels decreasing about the same (2-4 cars ahead), and I look for merging signs, such as a cars side mirror getting closer and closer, (1-0 cars ahead).

3) At a higher differential, I scan for signs further ahead because things happen faster. Since I scan further ahead to try to keep the same reaction time, this adds additional road to look at, which makes it more dangerous, which is why I try to keep my deltas small. (not to mention the increased braking distance, etc...) A higher differential complicates matters in various areas, obviously.
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