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Old 07-09-2013, 06:36 AM   #43
manfromthestix
Lost in Space
 
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Joined: Dec 2004
Location: Lexington, Virginia
Oddometer: 2,188
I was riding home from work the other day up a busy Interstate (so I could get out of the city faster) in a heavy rain. I found myself behind a semi tractor-trailer rig in the left lane and running beside another TT rig, an enormous tow truck pulling another tractor facing backwards. I thought, "WTF I bet these guys can't even see me in all this rain and spray, I should get off this ferking interstate and onto a secondary road where it's safer". So I did. I didn't ever think "I should quit riding because this is dangerous". As has been said repeatedly, living is dangerous and you just have to manage the risks as well as possible, build your skills, utilize whatever is available to make yourself more conspicuous (lights, clothing, stay out of blind spots, etc.), PAY ATTENTION, and wear proper gear in case you do crash.

All that said, there is always the chance for a total accident, someone else's fault, and you just have to be as prepared as you can and rely on your skills. My wife and I were riding two-up to a dinner date a couple weekends ago, about 4:00 in the afternoon, full sun, gorgeous day, riding down a country road near our home that we travel all the time. I noticed a dump truck approaching the main road on a side road to our right, noticed he was going kinda fast given that he had a T-intersection and stop coming up, so I rolled off the throttle as I gauged the situation. He never even started to slow down! As we both got closer to the intersection I decided I was never going to get the bike stopped in time even if I laid on the brakes hard as I could, so I hit the gas and moved as far left as I could. He finally noticed he was at the intersection and slammed his brakes on and came skidding out into the main road in a cloud of dust and gravel, just behind us. My wife said all she could see was his enormous grille and bumper about two feet from us, but I think it was more like five to ten feet. Whatever, it was a ferking dump truck! By the time he came to a stop just short of running into the creek on the far side of his intersection, we were probably fifty feet beyond. I stopped and asked my wife if she was OK, she said yeah, that was close, I almost peed myself but we need to get going or be late for dinner. I love that lady. She loves to ride with me as much as I love riding, so we do it knowing it can be dangerous and take all the precautions we can. She was very complimentary and appreciative of my reactions and skill in managing the situation . That was the closest call I've had in years, but of course not the only one. And like stated above, biffing my dirt bikes doesn't count and I think I passed 1000 wrecks on those things decades ago!

Ride if you love it, stay home or take a car if it's too much risk for your personal liking. Personally, I will ride until I can't any longer. 50 years and counting and it's still a thrill every time I get on a bike.

Doug
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manfromthestix screwed with this post 07-09-2013 at 11:05 AM
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