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If you look carefully at the fatality statistics, you see quite a correlation to alcohol and "fixed object" collisions (trees). Also, you'll see a high percentage of the fatalities occur on rural roads ... and at night. Read between the lines -- alcohol + night + dark road with a tighter turn than expected = slam into tree = bad news.

Bad things can happen ... but some basic prudent actions can be taken to mitigate some of the risks:

o No alcohol ... period.
o Try not to ride at night ... others can't see us; it's harder to judge distances and conditions; animals; road debris
o Check your ego before getting on the bike. Curves don't have to be taken at speeds higher than the limit. It's not necessary to get an adrenalin rush every few seconds. Take it easy.

That's all ... my plane is getting ready to board.
 

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rmw said:
The biggest problem with any quoted stats I've seen regarding ages of riders is that the population isn't defined. How many bikes of what types ridden by riders of what age etc. Without that, the numbers are fairly meaningless.
Ding, ding ... and by the way, ding! Ring the bell for rmw.

Aggregate numbers do not tell the story. They need to provide more granular cross-sectional analysis for this stuff to be more useful. Unfortunately, that means more effort at time of data collection.

At the barest of minimum I'd like to see a breakdown based on type of motorcycle and displacement. Age of rider would be nice; years of experience of rider would be better but more difficult to obtain. The best would be an indication of the rider's "stupidity quotient" (SQ) ... but I fear that would be open to subjective appraisal.

And of course I'd put FJR riders in a separate category altogether. :)
 

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Sparc said:
Then you might want to read this:

http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/pdf/nrd-30/NCSA/PPT/PresMCFatsUpdate.pdf

Age. Bike size. Per million miles traveled. Its all in there. If its not in the precise form you need, check out the references and run your own numbers.
I pored through the PDF as well as some of the references listed at the end. If someone is looking for definitive comfort that "it's not me, it's the other group" ... well, they won't find that comfort. The distribution of fatalities is sufficiently spread across all age and bike size parameters.

There are numbers to suggest helmet usage does have a positive effect. But the numbers are not there to suggest helmet usage prevents fatalities in all cases. Some, yes; all, no.

Alcohol usage is a significant factor: "Forty percent of fatally injured operators tested positive for alcohol, and 32 percent had a BAC of 0.08 or higher." Why anyone would climb on a bike with a 0.08 BAC is beyond me. But then again, why anyone would climb on a bike with even a beer or two in them is beyond me.

This statistic was interesting: "Almost half (about 46 percent) of fatal motorcycle crashes are single vehicle." We can't blame the "cager" on those.

"Two-thirds of the riders killed on 1,001-1,500 cc engine size were 40 and over years old." That number makes sense -- sport bikes are a young man's bike, and they generally are in the 600 - 999 cc range. The bigger than 1001cc bikes are cruisers and those are the older man's re-entrant bike.

Bottom line -- nobody is immune. Minimize risks as best as possible.
 

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Hawaii 600 said:
Cager pulls into bikers lane to make a pass of another cager, biker runs off roadway to avoid oncoming cager in its lane. Single vehicle accident. Gotta love flat statistics.
CrazyDave said:
cager deliberately screws with rider, sends rider into a panic rider runs off road into tree..single vehicle crash, yes flat statistics are just that, flat and void of many circumstances leading up to crashes.
I'll concede that point. But I think there's a bit of throwing the baby out with the bath water here. Sure, some incidents have root causes not related to the rider of the bike. But not all. And every single one of us knows what it feels like to go into a corner a bit hot. Given that all of us are still here typing into this forum, we navigated out of it. But there are still alot of people, new to the craft, who don't. Add a dark night, an unfamiliar road and a few drinks and I don't need someone in a car as the root cause.

chornbe said:
Bottom line... Get the training. Get the gear. BE SMART. Watch your own ass, cause *no* one else is. Don't rely on statistics and for the love of all that doesn't suck, don't settle into some stupid "I fall outside those statistics so I'm safe from [insert cause here]" mindset. emphasis added
Agreed. Not one of us is immune from anything ... including being momentarily foolish at just the wrong moment.

chornbe said:
live and dead smaller critters
On my ride today in western New Mexico I spotted alongside the road a dead ... cow. No kidding ... a full size beef cow. Deader than hell. Thankfully it was alongside the road and not in it.
 
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