Originally Posted by Big Rigger
Thanks Joe, for letting us in on the details of your crash. Compared to most of you guys, I have very little experience on two wheels. I found your insights on front wheel slides very helpfull. I do have alot of experience in crash analysis, and yours was expert. Most single vehical crashes are a result of a string of seeminly minor decisions, made sometimes long before the event. Also, in most cases, we recieve little warnings of inpending trouble long before it comes. The trick, of course, is recognizing the warnings and acting on them while they are just little ticklers in the back of your mind, if not, there is usually a small event (your slide) if not acted upon leads to a bigger event, and so on. Your words "good jugement" sums this all up. I hope other experienced, and not so experienced riders, on this forum will relate their incidents for all of us to learn from. Thanks again,
Don't forget the main cause which is excessive speed.
NONE of the other factors would have played a significant role if I had just slowed down. Many of the Northern California riders on this board have ridden with me and know that I USUALLY ride according to the situation. I can grind my pegs in the twisties on a warm day when I'm at 100% or I can be the rider that's holding the group back when I feel something is off. Don't forget that none of the other little causes contributed to my crash nearly as much as the one single bone headed choice to ride at a speed unsafe for the conditions at the time. Whether I was under the posted speed limit or not is irrelevant. The conditions don't apply to just the road or the weather, or even the number on the sign, they apply to the mechanical state of the bike and the mindframe of the loose nut behind the handlebar. I was well below the posted speed limit (which only applys to vehicles moving straight forward btw) but it was too fast for conditions. When you boil it all down, nearly every single vehicle accident's root cause is excessive speed for conditions. One thing that I've noticed over the years is also that in cases of multiple vehicle crashes, though the end report usually finds one person to blame (for insurance purposes) my father's advice of "It Takes two to have a wreck" generally holds true as well.
Normally I don't make my little stupid human tricks available for the general public's scrutiny but since this one was particularly dumb and there's the fact that I have witnessed EXACTLY the same crash too many times to count, I figured I should at least give some insight from my perspective in the hopes it will help someone else avoid it in the future.
This wasn't a big deal because I was luckily the only vehicle on the road. My final stopping point was in the opposing lane of traffic. Had I pulled the same manuever in Oakland where I lived till recently, someone else would be making this crash report. In the dirt on MX bikes, I've pulled some really cool and silly tricks. I've actually cracked the frames on two CRs! Lowsiding in the dirt isn't that big of a deal because dirt tends to be softer than pavement and you generally come to a fast stop but the real danger of a lowside on the street is that though you probably won't be seriously injured from the fall itself (assuming you have decent gear), while you are sliding you have no brakes and no directional control. You could easily slide right under a truck or over the cliff.