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This just happened this morning here in Portland. Here is a 53 year old guy, waiting for a stop light, when he gets plowed into from behind by someone not paying attention to their driving.

Motorcyclist killed in crash near St. Johns Bridge

A motorcyclist was killed in an early morning crash just north of the St. Johns Bridge Friday, police said.

Police investigate the crash scene.
The crash – involving two vehicles and the motorcycle -- happened just before 6:30 a.m., on Highway 30, police said.

Officers discovered the operator of the cycle, Thomas Neill, 53, dead at the scene, according to Portland police.

Investigators determined Neill had been traveling southbound on Hwy. 30 when he stopped behind another vehicle stopped at a traffic light, police said. While waiting for the signal to change, Neill was struck from the rear by a driver who failed to stop for the signal. The impact of the collision forced Neill into the vehicle in front of him and he was killed instantly, police said.

The drivers of the vehicles were not injured.

During the investigation, the two inner lanes of Hwy 30 were closed.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Officer Barry Busse at (503) 823-2013.
 

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Police are still looking for the driver of a truck that killed a girl on her motorcycle here in the Austin area earlier this month. She was sitting in the turn lane at 9pm and a truck with a trailer slammed her from behind and threw her about 50' then fled the scene. :( I've gotten in the habit of looking through my mirrors almost more than I'm looking ahead of me........even while I'm cruising along. I've always been pretty aggressive/defensive on my bikes but lately I've been REALLY cautious. I always have an escape route in mind. There have been several fatal accidents locally lately where drivers pull out in front of motorcycles so I just assume every car I come up to is about to hit the gas in front of me.... ;)
 

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I'm seeing deer everywhere! It can really take the fun out of a spirited ride.
 

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Bobaganoosh
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This is why when I am at a stop light I leave enough space between me and the car infront of me, keep the bike in gear, hand on clutch and eyes in my mirrors! I dont trust drivers, period! Let alone LA drivers!
 

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Unfortunately, I had to find out the hard way, about a year and a half ago. I have one eye forward and one eye backwards, kindy like Mad-Eye Moody.

The moron that hit me didn't get away, though it didn't matter. He was an illegal so the cops gave him the keys and he drove off. Did I mention, he was an illegal.

About a month ago, my riding buddy left my house, going home. He called me up and was on the side of the road because he was also hit at a stop light. The illegal alien that hit him had warrants out, so naturally, they let him go too.

I don't want to go off on a tangent, so sorry guys and I'm not being a cop basher as I used to be one. But the moral of this story is that it is happening alot lately, so be VERY CAREFUL and keep an eye looking backwards.

Brian C.
 

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Still needs a life.
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I have gotten into the habit of flashing my brake lights when a vehicle is approaching me from behind when I am stopped.
 

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Synergy said:
This is why when I am at a stop light I leave enough space between me and the car infront of me, keep the bike in gear, hand on clutch and eyes in my mirrors! I dont trust drivers, period! Let alone LA drivers!
It is the same here in Virginia... People here dont look where they are going half the time. Hell, the other half the time they are talking on the phone and still not looking where they are going...
 

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Synergy said:
This is why when I am at a stop light I leave enough space between me and the car infront of me, keep the bike in gear, hand on clutch and eyes in my mirrors! I dont trust drivers, period! Let alone LA drivers!
Amen brotha! Lots of space, eyes glued to rear view until the car behind me is stopped, bike in gear and as added protection, I'll be in way left in the lane or right depending on where I intend to go so I don't become the meat in a car sandwich.
 

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sps said:
Police are still looking for the driver of a truck that killed a girl on her motorcycle here in the Austin area earlier this month. She was sitting in the turn lane at 9pm and a truck with a trailer slammed her from behind and threw her about 50' then fled the scene. :( I've gotten in the habit of looking through my mirrors almost more than I'm looking ahead of me........even while I'm cruising along. I've always been pretty aggressive/defensive on my bikes but lately I've been REALLY cautious. I always have an escape route in mind. There have been several fatal accidents locally lately where drivers pull out in front of motorcycles so I just assume every car I come up to is about to hit the gas in front of me.... ;)

sps, please get in touch with me about this incident. I assume you refer to Austin, TX. My GF and I both ride, both own Ducatis and and put out a local magazine called Whoopsy!. Neither of us have heard of this incident and we would like to give it some press and do all we can to make people aware of it. Please tell me more.

[email protected]
 

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Flash your LEDs not your stock brake candle

Bill_Anderson said:
I have gotten into the habit of flashing my brake lights when a vehicle is approaching me from behind when I am stopped.
All of you had very good defensive points, from having an escape lane to watching your ass. However, we all know how good our mirrors are, good luck with that.

I set up on the inside or outside portion of the lane and snuggle up on the car in front of me on either side, if I can. That way he will take the hit first. Allowing us to split traffic helps us get out of harms way too.

In regards to Bill's flashing the lights, Ducati's brake lights are about as good as the mirrors so recently a buddy of mine installed integrated LED brake/turn signals on my 916. I know there have been threads addressing this and it led to confusion, but one day someone turned me on to the Custom Dynamics website. They have the fix and specific for your Ducati. $99 for the LED set up and I think about $35 for the clear tail light lens. Nice people there and I'll tell you, it is all that you hoped it would be. Further, you can remove your ugly stock turn indicators and clean up the rear end as well. The lights emit a super bright brake light, the yellow LEDs for the turn indicators are built in and when they flash the brake light or running red lights still remain on. The LED bulbs are angled too, so you can see them from the side. I highly recommend the system and from a safety standpoint, it really gets your attention if you pump the brake lever at a stop light. Again, the stock brake light was useless for this. Typical with the LED setup is the faster flash, no biggie for me but there is a fix for this supplied by the above company.
 

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Bobaganoosh
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This incident makes a good argument to allow lane splitting/sharing. Its legal here in CA, dont know about other states. Had the rider been allowed to lane split at the light. He might still be alive, or with less injures.
 

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+1 I always split the lane to the front on multi lane roads, gotta stay one step ahead of the Cell phone/day dreamers. Unfortunately on two lane roads where threading the traffic at a stop light/sign isn't legal, I get creative with my adjustment to the lane position, and when the light changes I get the hell away from the cars as quick as I can.
The worst daily situation is the person in the turn lane waiting to turn left in front of me, that scares the bejesus out of me when I'm alone. If there is traffic I use the cars as a sheild against the left turn artists.
This is a very dangerous passion we enjoy, can't let your attention drop for a second.
 

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As I get more into doing track days and seeing and hearing about how dangerous the street is, I have doubts about ever riding on the street again. Haven't ridden on the street since last April. Of the year 2005 that is.
 

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One of my riding buddies was hit from behind just last month - while moving! He was just going down the road at a moderate pace, in daylight, and passing a semi with a cop car just up ahead of him. Some lady traveling his direction, in his lane, just moving a little faster pace came right up his RC51's tailpipes. Guess he had slowed slightly from the normal fast lane pace because of the cop just ahead and the lady was so inattentive she kept right on like usual. He managed to keep it upright, thank God, or else he likely could have been tossed under the semi. He then sped up and flagged the cop down. She destroyed his subframe, fender, and exhaust, yet inexplicably, no ticket was issued at the scene. The lady just said she never saw him. Hopefully the law will get her after investigation is filed, but somehow I doubt it.

Had another friend rear ended a few years ago by a drunk driver while stopped at a red light. Went through the intersection like the red light and my friend just weren't there. He had back damage, but made a full recovery, and now has the nickname Hood Ornament. The drunk fled the scene but was caught later when he came back to "innocently" take a look from down the road and somebody recognized him. Needless to say, I wish lane splitting was legal in places other than Cali, but it wouldn't have helped either one of my friends. I just try to keep a real close eye on my mirrors until I have a car or two buffer completely stopped behind me.
 

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Re-reading this thread reminded me of when I was rear ended by a Harley. I was riding with my buddy near the Bohemian Grove in Northern Cal. around 1980. I came to a fork in the road and stopped, he kept going and both bikes went down, neither of us seriously hurt, but my Suzuki made out better than his brand new 80 cubic inch FL?? I guess you got to watch the mirrors for Harley's also.
 

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I always drive aggressive and LOUD [with my loud cans, revving the engine] so to stay out of trouble.

I rarely DON'T split lanes and if I am on a two lane road, one in each direction, I go to the right and sneak up front. I never like to be "in line," sandwiched between cars.

Hell, just today I am walking to the gym from Nob Hill down to the Financial District. I always look in every direction before crossing a street and then check again, and then when in cross walk, I check again.

So I am about 10 feet into crossing the street and this late model rental car just cruises past the stop sign, while the Japanese tourist is talking on his phone and the passenger has a map. Did not slow down one bit, traveling about 25 mph.

Had I not walked defensively I would have been toast. And how ridiculous is that? Walking to the gym at 7:30 p.m. on a lazy Sunday and killed by an asshole tourist one block from my house.:mad:

I guess what frosts me is that the guy just drove through the intersection with a sheet eating grin on his face, none the wiser as to his almost killing a pedestrian.

And not to be racist at all, but about 18 months ago there was an experienced rider killed on the mountain roads here, by a Japanese tourist who was driving on the wrong side of the road [he was used to driving in Japan].

By the way, I think riding a bike has benefited me to be cautious, even when walking.
 

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John said:
In regards to Bill's flashing the lights, Ducati's brake lights are about as good as the mirrors so recently a buddy of mine installed integrated LED brake/turn signals on my 916. I know there have been threads addressing this and it led to confusion, but one day someone turned me on to the Custom Dynamics website.
+1 on those.

I just installed my Custom Dynamics taillight yesterday and was MOST pleased with the result! I haven´t had a chance to take any pics yet, but the RUNNING light is as bright as my old BRAKELIGHT was before! And the LED BRAKELIGHT is BLINDING even in sunlight!

I haven´t had a chance of doing the turnsignal conversion yet, but I´ll hook it up soonest. I didn´t have enought wiring to extend the stuff all the way back.

As to Defensive driving.. I always lanesplit ALMOST all the way to the front (legally) and always keep an eye on the cars behind. That mostly has to do with adjusting your speed before a stoplight to let a car "catch-up". That car behind you is your collision insurance. I´d normally like a big-rig behind me, since those will stop any drunk-driver from plowing into ME at the stoplight.

//amullo
 
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