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Open bool logo   Motorcycle Crash Causation Summary

In this section, we looked at

There's also some good information in DOT's National Agenda document.

There is no consensus out there, because of the poor information situation, but we'll stick our necks out and sum it up here:

Augusta bikeA persistent factor that we hear from bikers is related to the conspicuity issue. This is the difficulty of other road users to gauge the speed of a motorcycle.

If you think about an oncoming truck, you have a nice, rectangular image which is getting bigger as the truck approaches. A motorcycle does not offer many visual cues to help people's vision gauge the speed. There is support for this in research, see Forensic Engineering Investigation by Randall Noon, CRC Press, 2001, ISBN 0849309115 (Google Books has an extract). We'll talk about this in the Conspicuity section. We did a little video demonstration of our own to help illustrate the problem and some fixes.

Things bikers can do to improve safety include: better training and skills practice for bikers, improved conspicuity, better protective gear, educating cage drivers to see bikers better, better pre-ride checks and keeping up with maintenance in general.

The truth of the matter is that most motorcycle crashes are no longer caused by Hurtian cages turning across bikes. The majority of crash causation is now under our control as bikers. We need to seize this opportunity and fix the problem. If we don't do it ourselves, we are going to see more regulations like compulsory protection, speed governors and restrictive regulations. And we will have asked for it.