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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The key to not getting hit by car drivers is visibility. I see a lot of bike riders wearing black jackets with black helmets. They " blend " right in with most blacktop roads. They are not invisible but they don't stand out and are often not noticed by the car drivers. I wear a BLAZE ORANGE color jacket ( the type deer hunters wear for outstanding visibility, so they don't get shot by another hunter ) and a bright red helmet. When my wife or son ride with me I make them wear a BLAZE ORANGE vest and red helmet so they are as visible as I am. High visibility Lime Green will work as well with a white helmet. We must make ourselves visible to car drivers, bright colored jackets and helmets will help a lot towards that goal. You still have to ride defensively, but the bright colors help a lot towards making you more visible than wearing dark colors. That why I use the " handle" of Blaze Orange. I am totally dedicated to high visibilty. So far so good, three years and 15,000 miles on my VN750 have been safe so far. Hope this one tip helps save a life someday. God Bless.:):)
 

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Drive less, ride more...
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High Vis helmets, jackets, pants, etc...should not be thought of as a cure of any sorts, you can still have idiots run you down. (You can still have deer jump in front of you or have drunks weave into you.) So , what I am saying is there is no guaranty that wearing said items will at some point save you....


BUT, they can only help. I have been fairly vocal about wearing bright colors as oppossed to dark ones for years. The "classic" biker get-up of black leather jacket, black jeans and if helmet, flat black paint , has alot to do with style and not much to do with safety. Granted , a leather jacket is a good move, but as our numbers increase, along with everything else out on the road, we need to start thinking offensively and not just defencively.

For years is was difficult to find riding gear in anything but black. Times have changed and many companies not only offer brighter colors, but even offer BRIGHT colors , like high vis yellows and greens.
Olympic makes there popular "Phantom" one piece suit in a bright yellow:
http://tinyurl.com/2ufkca
Fieldsheer makes jackets with bright yellow trim and reflective bits:
http://tinyurl.com/5o7b5e

And even leather jackets can be had with a bit of eye catching color:
http://tinyurl.com/6fsmed

Another good idea for those that ride at night, is to add reflective stripes, dots, pinstriping, etc to your helmet and bike..(they sell refective fabric to sew to jackets/pants too..) See here for ideas:
http://www.reflectivelyyours.com/

You can even get reflective pinstripes for your wheels:
http://tinyurl.com/56aup4

Again, not a cure, but a way to improve the odds so to speak.

So, you do not have too look like a deer hunter riding a bike (not that there is anything wrong with that...) as there are alot of options in gear if you wish to maintain some sort of "style" but make yourself a bit more noticable.

Another thing to consider is most folks are "fair weather" riders, and they spend most of their time riding on those hot sunny days of summer. Black helmets and gear are just making you hotter here. Be cooler and be more noticable. Dress for sucess as they say.................


KM
 

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Rider on the Storm
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Doesn't blaze orange blend in with all the orange barrels, and high-viz yellow blend in with all the construction workers standing around those barrels?!

;)

Bright shirts do make a difference. I was at a Reds baseball game the other night, and all the venders moving through the stands were wearing high-viz orange shirts. Even a sight-impaired fan could locate a beer-seller from the other side of the ballpark!
:beerchug:

OK, re: riding ~ in cooler weather I still like to wear my black Fox Creek Leather jacket. But I've been thinking about putting an Icon mesh vest over it at night or during bad weather...
http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/3/11/102/2231/ITEM/Icon-Mil-Spec-Mesh-Vest.aspx.

For warmer weather, I wear a very bright (but pleasingly) yellow Joe Rocket 4.0 mesh jacket. (I ordered it online because the stores only stocked the more standard but less visible black, red, blue, gray, etc. I also replaced the stock spine pad with a tougher one.) Here is the 5.0 version...
http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/1/1/39/13172/ITEM/Joe-Rocket-Phoenix-50-Jacket.aspx.

Re: helmets... I considered orange and yellow, but stayed with basic white, which is especially visible at night, and cooler on those hot commutes, especially when I'm slowed down by the orange barrels...
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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I agree that bright colors help, but aren't the sure fire cure for stupid people who just don't pay attention on the road.
How many times has there been an accident involving two cars and the person who caused it says "I didn't see the other car" :BLAM:

A lot is up to the rider to pay attention to what all is going on around them.

But yes, bright colors certainly help. :smiley_th
 

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This is an issue that has moved front and center in my world this week. This past Monday, my wife was hit by a car while riding her bicycle. All in all it has been a very unpleasant experience!! Thank God her injuries, while serious, were not life altering. She is a serious rider with over 17 years of experience, who averages between 4000 and 5000 miles each season. This is the first time she has ever had an accident. She has had a couple of close calls over the years, but she is a very alert rider and has been lucky enough to avoid any accidents. She always wears bright colors, and always wears a helmet. On Monday she was wearing a very bright, orange and yellow jersey. The road she was on was wide and clear, with very light traffic. A 78 year old woman attempting to make a left onto the road my wife was riding, "didn't see her" and accelerated directly into the side of the bike. The force was enough so that the pedal of my wife's bike left a hole in the license plate of the car; and this was after the car was at a dead stop at a stop sign on the side street! Whether she was on a bicycle or motorcycle, she would not have been able to avoid the collision. (My wife was riding at a little over 20 MPH when she was hit) The doctors told us that her helmet probably saved her life, but most certainly prevented any serious head injuries. I had the opportunity to discuss the incident with the police officer who responded to the scene (on his motorcycle), the doctor in the trauma center who treated her (an avid motorcycle rider), and the nurse in the ER (commutes daily on his Hardley), and they all felt a connection between her accident and their motorcycle riding. I had to ride my bike from work to the hospital when I got the call, and I can say that the connection wasn't lost on me the whole way there. The lesson from this experience echoes what Hyper said, there are people on the road who aren't paying enough attention to what is going on around them. Be as visible as you can out there, but be prepared for that other driver who isn't paying attention. Wear protective gear when you ride in case you find yourself skidding along the pavement (even if you are not required to by law). The police officer said it more than once during our brief conversation, you have to ride with your head on a swivel because they are out there. Ride Safe!
 

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ChrisC - Hope your wife is back to good health soon. Ditto to you and Knifemaker and Hyper. Make yourself visible, but drive defensively by paying close attention to what's around you (caged idiots). I get very nervous when I see drivers holding their cell phone and making lane changes without even a glance at what's beside them and then without making a turn signal, and all the time they are doing 70 mph.
 

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Chris, I'll keep your wife in my prayers as she mends. And thanks for the reminder about colors, protective gear, and just paying attention. I can't be reminded enough.
 

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Thanks for the thoughts and prayers. She is definitely on the mend.
 

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I agree

The key to not getting hit by car drivers is visibility. I am totally dedicated to high visibilty. So far so good, three years and 15,000 miles on my VN750 have been safe so far. Hope this one tip helps save a life someday. God Bless.:):)
It sure helps to be seen, but I still ride like everyone is out to hit me. I use a great winter HiVis green jacket with reflective stripes for cool to cold weather, a Carheart vis green heavy T for warm weather, and a lightweight green T with reflective stripes for hot weather. I tried painting a helmet with HiVis green, but it really looked bad. When I wear my riding leather, I put on a HiVis vest.

My bro has a Joe Rocket summer riding coat with built in armor and reflective stripes. Great protection, but I'm way more visible.

The only testament I can give that the HiVis stuff works is I'm still alive after 42 years of riding in all types of weather, day or night.

BTW I've put LED marker lights on the bike that work well in daylight as well as night. Picked them up at the local truck stop.

DT
 

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Totally agree about the bright colors.

I put 2 x 20W halogen spots on the front of my bike to add visibility. This 40W plus the headlight 55W makes a difference.

I also have HIGHLY reflective tape on the back of my helmet which jumps off of it at night when lights hit it. Amazing how much visibility this adds from the rear.

You can never be too protective or be too alert to your surroundings.

Jon
 

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I use a headlight modulator in addition to the ICON vest for most of my riding. I hope that 75% of the time I am seen.
Being realistic and cut off a few times I have developed a habit of watching the front tire when I am beside a cage--it can be your first indication the cage is coming into your lane. If i see movement in my direction my 138db horns let them know where I am.
 

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Check out the Motorcycle Safety Store in Ebay. He sells horns, Flashers, brake/tail light.turnsignal convertors, ETC. Seems to have a large stock of items.
 

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Just heard about an accident about 20 miles North of me.
A girl & guy were riding. Both with bright vests, all the gear. The girl was following the guy. He heard something, looked back, and saw the girl & bike flying through the air.
Turns out they were stopped to make a turn and the girl got rear-ended by some 17 year old girl.
Unfortunately the girl rider died.

So, even when weraring bright colors, remember, there's still stupid things that happen.

Ride like everyone's out to get ya!!! And if stopped, to make a turn, or even at a light, always keep an eye out behind, beside and all around you and always have an escape route planned and ready to execute, should the need arise.
 

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That is both sad and scary! Great advice Hyper!! Always be ready to execute your escape plan. You have to keep your head on a swivel at all times, and you always have to be thinking.
 

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Traggic to witness the crash too.

So here's my 'can you see me now' picts. Good views of the 10" pull back bars too. They really make riding the 750 more comfortable.


and:


DT
 

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Discussion Starter #18
You're absolutely right "Hyperbuzzin ". Wearing bright colors will not prevent a colision with a cager who is not looking. Hopefully, wearing the bright colors will help the cagers see and notice us when they hopefully glance our way. In any case wearing bright colors will always be more in your "visibility" favor than wearing dark colors. High gas prices are causing more people to buy and ride motorcycles and scooters than ever before. We now have to hope they get the proper training and wear bright colors before venturing out in the dangerous world of riding with " blind inconsiderate" cagers on the road. Maybe we will get more public safety announcements on TV with more bikes on the road as bikes sales keep climbing with the high gas prices.Take care everybody, may the Good Lord keep you safe on all your future bike rides.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Nice photos , Dirtrack650. My wife wears a Blaze Orange vest just like your rider in the photo. Are you sitting on some kind of white blanket or something like that? Looks like you get some of that material caught in the engine somewhere. What are you sitting on?
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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Are you sitting on some kind of white blanket or something like that? Looks like you get some of that material caught in the engine somewhere. What are you sitting on?
I think that's his passengers leg.
 
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