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Author Topic: Why are we hitting the deck?  (Read 2452 times)

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Offline Airguitar

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Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #40 on: October 13, 2014, 08:01:25 am »
I come from the aviation industry and train pilots for a living. We delve very deeply into the area of Human Error and what its causes are, how to mitigate human error, etc. The causes are many and you guys have unwittingly ALL hit on the exact elements that we discuss in training.

1) Approaching a complex and quickly changing environment at speeds which don't allow you to adapt/react/respond in time.
2) Operating at speeds which are higher than your capability to project and avoid possible adverse outcomes.
3) Automation Dependency - Thinking YOU are great, while the systems are covering up your mistakes, OR thinking the system will take care of you when your own capability runs out.
4) Get-there syndrome. Taking bigger risks in order to achieve your goal, especially when close to it.
5) Fatigue.
6) Deviation from Standard Operating Procedures (ie. breaking the rules)
7) Lack of experience/Training.
8- Loss of situational awareness. (Caused by one or more of the above conditions)
Among others...
Interestingly, it is frequently a combination of the above elements that result in an accident.

Lowest on the list is mechanical failure. This is extremely rare.

I bet this sounds rather familiar when you scroll back through the comments on this thread. I firmly believe we can be trained to recognize these threats in ourselves and/or our environment and modify our behaviour accordingly and GET HOME SAFELY on a much more regular basis.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2014, 08:02:16 am by Airguitar »
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Offline Damaraland

Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #41 on: October 13, 2014, 08:41:45 am »
I recently had the privilege of attending the CountryTrax weekend offroad course.  That really opened my eyes and it started a new chapter in my biking "career".  For me it makes sense now to view biking as a sport, with skills that you need to practice and consistently apply to stay on top of things.

I've had three falls in the last 3 weeks, all 100% my fault.  All falls were however in "controlled" circumstances, if there is such a thing.  One was due to me practising emergency breaking on gravel (ABS off, too much front brake and wheel washed out).  Other one was practising sharp turns in the sand and the other was an attempted power-slide where I lost the rear.

Every fall is due to me running out of talent, but it's OK, every single time I practice I get a better feeling of where the bike's limits of adhesion is, and most importantly, I push my limits and boundaries a bit outward.  In terms of safety when on a trip, it also then makes it a lot easier for me to consciously ride at say 70% of my abilities, always leaving enough margin should the pooh hit the fan.
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Offline sheldyn

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Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #42 on: October 13, 2014, 09:07:33 am »
all well said with regard to people pushing themselves beyond their capabilities. 

BUT

It must also be said that a too careful rider or over cautious rider can be just as dangerous as a over zealous rider.  Those guys bother me big time.  nervous riders, the guys that are scared of their shadows SHOULD NOT BE ON BIKES.
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Offline Omninorm

Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #43 on: October 13, 2014, 10:17:28 am »
"Why are we hitting the deck?"

A lot of time it's just plain pushing the limits imho. Bike limits, rider skill limits, tyre limits.
Eventually you run out of talent.

Ride within the limits and you will be fine unless there is outside factors beyond your control. i.e diesel spill, car swerving in front of you etc. Hopefully then the electronic gizmos your bike does have can help you i.e TCS, or ABS.

Our group of riders actually discussed that we are going to sign up for a bunch training courses next year to improve our riding. I know I can really use it.

^^ I agree with Sheldyn as well, nervous riders are also a danger...but it comes down to the limits. imho, they are riding beyond their limits already. I see it daily in traffic, i like to see new riders and i guess I was nervous the first time in traffic as well, but I didn't ride lick some of these riders.
And it's not getting better, i see thi one guy every day, by now he need to have relaxed a lot but yet, thsi guy is braking looking in his mirrors more than ahead, then slams on brakes when someone stops in front, looks very unstable. He doesnt have gloves on and his knuckles are white from gripping the bars. I was going to ask if I can just talk some basics with him but I never get the chance, also...the guy will probably be very offended. I also feel that I am not the best rider by any means but someone has to help the guy.







« Last Edit: October 13, 2014, 10:23:31 am by Omninorm »
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Offline 2wdrift

Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #44 on: October 13, 2014, 10:38:01 am »
The most dangerous drivers/riders are the under confident and overconfident. Both should not be on public roads. Where do you fit in?

I believe that riding hard and pushing your limits in a controlled environment is the best way of becoming a safe driver/rider. I do it on a regular basis on our farm roads where there is no other traffic. If I crash and die there, so be it. But what I have learned there has saved me quite a few times both in cars and on bikes. I tend to ride on our dirt roads with TC off and abs only active on the front wheel, I then brake as hard as I can before the abs kicks in. If the abs kicks in I see it as a failure in technique.

I will mostly ride with all the safety nets in place to help in case I have a lapse in judgement, but I have never felt them kicking in, except in the rain where TC does a much better job than I can.

I also think that while our riders might be getting more dependent on riding aids and the like we are forgetting the amount of other traffic on our roads now. There are hundreds of thousands of new cars on the roads, and very few are being driven by skilled competent drivers. So the external risk is also higher.
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Offline Airguitar

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Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #45 on: October 13, 2014, 11:31:19 am »
all well said with regard to people pushing themselves beyond their capabilities. 

BUT

It must also be said that a too careful rider or over cautious rider can be just as dangerous as a over zealous rider.  Those guys bother me big time.  nervous riders, the guys that are scared of their shadows SHOULD NOT BE ON BIKES.

To whom are they a danger? How cautious is over-cautious? How scared is too scared?
I'm not being contentious, this is a very honest question. Where and when is the line crossed?
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Offline sheldyn

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Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #46 on: October 13, 2014, 12:05:37 pm »
maybe the word cautious is wrong in this instance.  cautious is good.

maybe the word should be nervous.

I do think we all know the type of rider being described. 

As for what is the right mix, I suppose its different for all of us. 
Regards,

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Offline TheBear

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Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #47 on: October 13, 2014, 12:41:06 pm »
- Lack of training.
- Lack of common sense.
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Offline 2wdrift

Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #48 on: October 13, 2014, 01:34:46 pm »
all well said with regard to people pushing themselves beyond their capabilities. 

BUT

It must also be said that a too careful rider or over cautious rider can be just as dangerous as a over zealous rider.  Those guys bother me big time.  nervous riders, the guys that are scared of their shadows SHOULD NOT BE ON BIKES.

To whom are they a danger? How cautious is over-cautious? How scared is too scared?
I'm not being contentious, this is a very honest question. Where and when is the line crossed?

I think that when someone is indecisive on the roads they can be a danger to others. I have seen chaos ans confusion at simple traffic circles and at stop streets when nervous drivers dont want to screw up and then wait long past their time to drive. This of course leads to other drivers becoming impatient and doing stupid stuf (that is on them though).
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Online Kaboef

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Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #49 on: October 13, 2014, 03:14:10 pm »
Consider what the stopping distance of a fully fueled 990 ( or much worse a GS1200a ) at 140kph on a loose dirt toad. 

When have you last ridden a 1200GSA?

It has FAR better brakes than a 990.

But I agree with you. Doing 140km/h on gravel your chances to stop in time when something goes wrong is very slim.


Back to topic:
Accidents happen when two vehicles want to occupy the same space.
Anticipate when this might happen and ride accordingly.

A week ago I was riding, at night, down Mountain View road toward the Stellenberg High School.
Matriekafskeid evening.
Cars parked for 100's of meters up and down the road, people walking, and it's dark.
I rode 50km/h with my fingers on the brake and my eyes wide open, because the environment tells me that people are not looking for me.
Unlucky for some biker, he did not, and I rode past the accident scene where he lay in the road after hitting a car.

We must assume that we are invisible and accept that in an altercation with a car, we will always loose.

We are our own worst enemy.

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Offline badseed

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Re: Why are we hitting the deck?
« Reply #50 on: October 13, 2014, 07:26:15 pm »
something else that scares the crap out of me is young drivers , often girls new to driving hurtling down the highways at 140 kph in their little Polo's/Fiat 500/Corsa without any idea of what to do if something goes wrong. Much like newbies on a 200kg bike at 140kph.
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