Seems like either those well dressed survive longer, or the longer they survive, the better dressed they become! I don't see anybody my age (61) riding with shorts and flip flops. Most of those who do are in the age bracket that thinks they are bullet proof. I wear shorts and flip flops, but not while riding!
It has been over 6 months since I broke my leg by dragging it along a guardrail for 50 feet, and it is a long slow healing process for me. I believe the fact that I was wearing boots and chaps prevented a worse injury, and possibly even saved my leg. I`m looking forward to getting back in the saddle next spring, and will be looking for a better, cooler summer riding jacket, because I will be wearing ALL THE GEAR, ALL THE TIME. (ATGATT)
Probably now is the time to be shopping for a bargain. A ballistic nylon mesh jacket with armor in the shoulders and elbows and padding across much of the back was my second purchase (helmet first). Really not hot at all when riding.
You`re right about this being the time to look for a bargain. I think I`ll be looking for a Hi-Vis jacket and helmet this time. I tried on several reflective vests last spring, but couldn`t find any big enough to fit over my jacket. I need something cooler for summer anyway.
You know, I have seen the results of hundreds of car accidents where people's skulls have been crushed, bones broken beyond repair, etc.
Professional drivers wear protective gear while driving their race cars which have even more protective passenger compartments than street cars. And professional drivers have more training than most cagers on the road.
Why don't we think that it's stupid not to wear ATGATT while driving in a car? I recently read in a thread that 20 percent of all vehicle fatalities are motorcyclists. That means that 80 percent of all vehicular fatalities are from car drivers, passengers or pedestrians. This should logically tell us that pedestrians and car drivers and passengers should be wearing ATGATT or they are foolishly risking their lives.
I'm not bucking the use of riding gear, I just feel that safe and defensive driving is much more appropriate than thinking that the gear is going to protect you. Wearing ATG is not going to help you one bit if you are schmushed against a concrete barrier or other vehicle when your riding 90 mph plus and weaving in & out of traffic like an idiotic speed demon. Wearing ATG isn't going to help you drive better if you've consumed even a small amount of alcohol at dinner or otherwise. In fact, wearing ATG doesn't help you drive any better at all, and may even make some fools think they can drive faster or riskier because they have "protection."
Personally, the only protective gear I wear ATT is my gloves, and I'm looking for a good light pair of riding shoes and a nice reflective vest or a light-weight reflective mesh jacket. But I NEVER drink a drop of alcohol when I ride or allow a passenger to have any alcohol, either. And I'm constantly placing myself in the least risky riding position among traffic, have my finger on the horn button and keep out of people's blind spots. I keep my baby in gear when stopped at a light and I'm very mindful of cars coming up behind me. I've taken the beginners and advanced riders courses and I incorporated what I learned there into my driving habits. I know the gear will help, but I know the gear would help in a car accident, too. I work in ICU with many traumas, and I've seen the effects of car and motorcycle accidents. Almost every fatal or near fatal motorcycle accident I've seen was with people wearing helmets (not sure about jackets, etc. but the paramedics always let us know if helmets were in use). Most were either drinking alcohol or running from the cops. However, in every case of fatal or near fatal car accident, none of the occupants were wearing helmets that "could have" saved their lives or protected them from serious head injuries.
Why isn't it publically scorned to not wear a helmet in a car, but it is on a motorcycle. Professional race drivers wear helmets because they feel it protects them, why shouldn't non-professionals who don't know how to drive as well wear them too?
I believe that you can not justify having to wear a helmet on a motorcycle any more than while in car. On the surface it might seem more necessary on a motorcycle, but the facts don't pan out because there are so many more people dying or getting serious injuries in car accidents than motorcycle accidents. Either everyone should wear ATGATT or it shouldn't matter at all.
hey ruby... obiviously you dont wear any gear.... thats your choice... and im glad that you work in the icu... not many people have a stomach for that kind of thing.... but did you ever take into account all the people who dont come in to see you cuz they were wearing gear? i have 3 friends who have had bad crashed... none of them were drinking... none of them were messing around and all three were riding responsibly and defensivly.... yet all three found their way to the pavement and the only thing that kept them from a trip in an ambulance is their gear.... hey i cant force you to wear it but i know that when i hop on im atleast always wearing my helmet jacket gloves and boots... pants are optional!!! anywho what do i know.. im only 23
Yes, more people die in cars than on motorcycles, BUT MANY MORE MILES ARE DRIVEN IN CARS THAN ON MOTORCYCLES! If you compare miles driven/ridden, more fatalities occur on bikes than in cars.
It would probably save some lives if people wore helmets any time they are on the road, regardless of the vehicle or even if they are pedestrians. Will they? Probably not, due to the perceived odds involved. I'm not aware of any race car drivers that wear their helmets and Nomex suits in their personal vehicles, or have their family members wear the gear too. They realize that on the track the odds of something going badly are increased and dress accordingly. I realize the odds of something going badly on my bike are greatly increased and wear the gear in an effort to increase my chances of survival. I also know that drinking, taking risks, etc., increase my odds of having an accident and avoid those activities.
If we assume that two riders of equal ability drive the same roads but one of them wears ATGATT and the other never does, statistics prove that the guy with the gear has the best chance of survival.
Good and true points. I'm certainly not advocating that people don't wear gear. I'm taking a huge risk not wearing ATGATT. But then again, I take a huge risk just riding a motorcycle in south Florida, even if I do wear ATGATT. But for the grace of God, any of us could be mush in the blink of an eye.
ohh while im thinking of it do you know how much emt's make down there.... im thinking f moving down to that area and i figure thats the only qualifications i have so i figure they can alwas use an emt somewhere.... woldnt mind movin up to a paramedic but need more time/money/training..
I pray that your faith, luck and skill continue to keep you safe and in one piece while riding, Rick. However I must point out a flaw in the conclusion you draw from the statistics you quote. You say that 20% of all fatalities are motorcyclists, and I have no reason to dispute that. What I do question though, is what percentage of total miles driven by all traffic was driven by the cyclists. If bikes only account for 2% of total miles driven, but 20% of fatalities, then the death rate is 10 times higher, per mile driven, for bikes than it is for cars. I believe that I am conservative in my example. I recently read that a bike rider is 17 times more likely to be injured in an auto accident than a driver or passenger in a car.
You have the right to choose for yourself how you dress to ride. However I believe wearing atgatt, raises my odds of surviving a wreck and/or avoiding injuries when I go down. I`ve heard many long time riders say that there are only two kinds of riders, those who have gone down, and those who will!! Still wishing you many safe miles in the saddle in the years ahead, my friend.
I am a strong proponent of Motorcycle Safety and want to add my voice to those that encourage safe practices. We are all affected to some extent whenever someone is in a motorcycle accident, especially if there are injuries. In addition to the anguish caused to family and friends, there are a number of ways that the Cost is passed on to all of us. First the medical cost to the insurance companies is reflected in our premiums. If a "breadwinner" is out of work there may be costs of Social Services needed to help the affected family that are supported by our taxes. There is also the loss of productivity that an employer sustains. All these costs add up. No one individual bears the full costs of his accident.
As such, we should all follow safe practices and encourage everyone else to as well. There are three areas of motorcycle safety we should promote.
1. Safe Equipment (especially tires & brakes)
2. Safe Riding Practices
3. Personnal Protection (ATGATT)
No one likes to be "told" what to do and I hope that everyone who rides voluntarily takes steps to enhance safety (and reduce costs all bikers and society in general). I am concerned that as motorcycle accidents become more frequent and costly to society there will be increased movement toward regulation. If you think that helmet laws in some states are bad, just wait. (Just remember, 3-wheel ATVs were actually banned.) The new administration will be looking hard for ways to cut healthcare costs in the future and we don't want to be a visible target by racking up lots of statistics.
"The Risks YOU take impact others besides yourself."
Well, since it gets so cotton-pickin' hot down here in North Texas, I've had to modify ATTGATT to MOTGATT (Most Of The Gear....). I always wear a helmet, jacket (mesh in the summer), gloves and boots. When possible and cooler, I wear leather pants and jacket.
I don't do this because I plan to have a wreck, I do it "just in case". It's like going fishing - I wear a life jacket, not because I plan to jump in the lake, but "just in case".
As many others have said, wearing the gear (MOTGATT or ATTGATT) may not ALWAYS keep you from being hurt, but it's better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. It's a personal choice. I have a riding buddy that still must think he's invincible because he only wears a "dew rag" and gloves. His choice.
The best advice I can muster on the topic is to dress for the crash and not the ride. This is my old idea of protected in the summer (and yes, those are Craftsman mechanic gloves, not MC gloves):
Since then it's become (you can't really tell, but those are riding specific jeans with knee armor):
I have a mesh jacket also that has full armor and good abrasion resistance, along with leather pants that have vented panels in the right places to keep me from getting overheated. And on REALLY hot days, I wear my camos with some Icon underarmor and Alpinestars knee and shin pads.
I got mesh pants recently, so I don't know if they are as cool as the mesh jacket I got last summer. My plan is to wear them over jeans when it's cool to warm and shorts when it's HOT. My plan is to die without ever experiencing road rash.
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