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Relatively new rider. Question for you guys that ride 10K+ miles per year. Where do you have the most close calls with cars?

Every time I see someone in the left turn lane in oncoming traffic the hair on the back of my neck stands up. On my first ride after I got my license, two cars pulled out in front of us and my buddy (ahead of me) had to stop pretty quick. So I'm sensitive to that. What else should I be sensitive to? I ride mostly city/highway, but I imagine I'll be on the interstate at some point.

Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks!
 

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The Q-tip(old person) that pulls up from a side street, looks directly at you and pulls out anyway :mad:
 

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I ride like every single person in a 4 wheeler is trying to kill me... That way I am always ready.
^^^ +1 -- Exactly!!

That, and I find that watching the wheels of the car in the lane ahead and next to you will indicate the exact moment when they are about to change into YOUR lane without warning. That's when I hit the air-horn! :D


Dan
 

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Trust no one. Practice emergency stops. Watch for traffic changing lanes on freeways and such. Try not to ride in their blind spot. Be safe!!!
 

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Most common for me is people changing lanes into me. Just happened yesterday. I am usually looking them right in the face through their side mirror and I always get a good look at the "oh ****" look on their face as they whip it back to the other lane and slam on the brakes to avoid the car they were trying to speed around.
 

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Relatively new rider.
Sorry! You do not belong in heavy traffic or someone will be calling a relative about you.

As a new rider you need to steer away from traffic and ride safer less traveled roads even if it is out of the way.

No one sees you! No matter the colors or pretty lights on your bike. Someone is always out to get you and you need to be so attuned and focused on that ONE time you thought you were safe... and in the blink of the eye, it happens.

Give yourself some time! Riding is great fun and experience makes it even funner... :Dthumb up
 

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Sorry! You do not belong in heavy traffic or someone will be calling a relative about you.

As a new rider you need to steer away from traffic and ride safer less traveled roads even if it is out of the way.

No one sees you! No matter the colors or pretty lights on your bike. Someone is always out to get you and you need to be so attuned and focused on that ONE time you thought you were safe... and in the blink of the eye, it happens.

Give yourself some time! Riding is great fun and experience makes it even funner... :Dthumb up
That is a very one sided opinion. When I first started riding, I HAD to learn to ride in heavy traffic right out the door. It is heavily dependant on where you live.

Now, I will go as far as to tell a new rider to stay out of the express lane. Don't even try to cut across to it. That is looking for trouble as a new rider.

Also, take an experienced rider's course. You don't have to have any great experience behind bars to take the course, but the instructors will teach you a thing or two you never knew and you'll learn more about your bike in a day than you might in a few months. Things like; Your bike has more skill than you probably ever will and can take just about anything you throw at it.
 

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Most of my close calls have been from people trying to run up my arse. When ever you are stopping , keep a close eye on your rear view, and look for ways to get out of their way as you come to a stop.
 

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Also, take an experienced rider's course. You don't have to have any great experience behind bars to take the course, but the instructors will teach you a thing or two you never knew and you'll learn more about your bike in a day than you might in a few months. Things like; Your bike has more skill than you probably ever will and can take just about anything you throw at it.
thumb up +1. look for the First MSP courses in your area. around here there are a couple places that do it as well as some local community colleges. or ask as some of the local motorcycle dealerships - the harley dealer 40 miles from me does both beginner and advanced rider courses. the more info and skills you can bring to the table when out riding the better your chances are of coming home every nite.

that being said, like already posted above, ride with the mentality that you are invisible, too quiet, and that every driver out there is texting or screwing with the radio or stuffing their face with mcdonalds cheeseburgers. don't assume that just because you are wearing safety yellow gear, or have an exhaust that will wake the dead that the soccer mom in her 2-ton escalade can even be bothered to hear you or take a look over her shoulder to see you in traffic. i commute 40 miles one way each day and 95% of it is on the highway. almost every single close call are the ones with the quick lane changes or the bozos that tailgate and then "think" they have enough room in front of you to cut back into the lane and slam on their brakes because the car ahead of you wasn't going as fast as they thought and that bubble of a few car lengths you were giving that person you were following was for a reason.. don't be in a blind spot and don't be right on the bumper of the car ahead of you. the other one i see a lot is at the merges on to the highway..
 

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People cutting across parking lots , not even watching where the **** they are going , 5-6 close calls so far in my experience , 2 this season alone ... Also , people changing into my lane when I'm right next to them trying to pass on the highway .... Terrifying .
 

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LOTS of a$$holes crossing the centerline while texting!!! I can't count how many times I come around a curve and they are "using" part of my lane (sometime on straights too...)
Pulling out from side streets when I'm on the curb-side lane used to be a bigger issue, but driving lights on my highway bars seem to help.
I really hate when they have tinted windows and can't see where they are looking. I start looking for "a way out" instead of staring at them (brakes covered). You go where you look and if you are looking at them when they pull out you will hit them.
Yes, they are all out to get you!
 

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It's a jungle out there . . . .

When you ride your head is on a swivel -- second guessing those ahead of you, to either side and behind you. It's a full time job. Statistically, the "left turners" are the biggie. Not only oncoming traffic, but those on a side road to your right, pulling out crossing your lane directly in front of you to go in the direction you just came from. This example is one of my memorable close calls. I (2-up with wife) was southbound in the left wheel track on a long straight section of road on a major two-lane highway, with large diameter headlight, and bright amber spots on a light bar. I saw a pickup ahead on a side road. I second guessed his intention. I scrubbed speed down to 40 from 60. As I got to the critical point of closing distance I watched him and his wife look to their right as they proceeded to pull out in front of me to his left. They were cross-ways in the road when they looked my direction. I could see the whites of their eyes got as big as silver dollars with jaws dropped. I braked the best I could and swerved to the right... hoping he would would not panic and stop, but continue moving forward. Fortunately he had the presence of mind to recognize the situation and stomped the gas pedal. I swerved to the right edge of the lane inches from the shoulder and missed the ass-end of his pick up by mere inches. That one made my heart skip a beat. This happened 20 years ago, and I visualize the scenario like it was yesterday. I live in a rural environment with comparatively less traffic. I'm no less attentive of side roads in the boondocks as I am in more densely populated areas. I've had a few other close calls, and got taken out in a chain reaction incident in a construction zone on a freeway in a lane closure, but for brevity sake, I'll leave it to your imagination. It's a jungle out there. Don't let your guard down.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Great advice. I really appreciate it.

To clarify, I live in Omaha, NE. I ride to work on a four lane road separated by a median, then just a couple of blocks on two lane streets until I get to my office.

I wouldn't call the traffic "heavy" when compared to a big city. It isn't really stop and go. It is 45mph with some stoplights.

The comment about watching behind me and having a way out was really good. I'll bet $100 that comes in handy in the next year, easy. The rest of the comments are great as well.

I really appreciate the advice. Thanks to you all.
 

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Good tips here. Try to never ride by the rear tires of a car or truck. Get up where they can see you. Never trust a car when they have their signals on doesn't mean there going to turn. Ride with your high beam on.
These are blind spots on a semi
 

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I agree high beams during daytime. I have friends that that you can hardly see there headlights.
 

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Good tips here. Try to never ride by the rear tires of a car or truck. Get up where they can see you. Never trust a car when they have their signals on doesn't mean there going to turn. Ride with your high beam on.
These are blind spots on a semi
I don't see how the bike with the fairing beside the truck (left side of pic, truck's right side) can be in a blind spot. It's directly in-line with the mirrors, including the LARGE convex mirror.

What am I missing?
 

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Get over it , People will cut you off whether your driving a bike ,truck, or a school bus... Their not out to get you personally, They just want to get to where there going or not looking where there going, And it doesn't matter who they run over to get there .. I assume none of you has never at one time or another cut someone off by ''accident'' while you were driving a car..
 
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