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Risk Hierarchy: Information - Rider Ed - Driver Ed - Conspicuity - Bike Defect - Ultra-Defensive Riding - Crash Avoidance - Injury Mitigation - Crash Scene
Information and Research
This section is mostly about research into crash causation and countermeasures, and we have one additional page on the cognitive aspects of multitasking in relation to riding.
We know very little about the causes of motorcycle accidents in America in the 21st Century. This is because the current study on motorcycle crashes, the Hurt Report, is based on 30 year old data. For various reasons, we believe that the major conclusions of the Hurt report are no longer valid, which is not a reflection on this pioneering work. In many ways, it might be indicative of Hurt's success in changing the playing field.
In this section, we look at
- The Hurt report
- Why we need a new study
- The new MSF/Virginia Tech Naturalistic Motorcycle Study.
- Other studies done abroad
- Commentary from biker sources
Our conclusion is that things have changed. Bikes, especially sports bikes, are much faster than in the 1970s, and tend to be ridden by younger and less experienced bikers. Many older bikers also have skills deficits and possibly poorer eyesight and cognitive processes. Cage drivers continue to fail to see bikers, possibly in smaller numbers.
We note the action of the US Marines, mirrored by the USAF and MSF, who analysed sport bike crashes and who are introducing more specialized training aimed at younger sport bike riders, and the MSF's offering aimed at older bikers.
We believe that skills deficits - cornering technique, emergency skills like braking and swerving, contribute to many crashes.
We think that many bikers have deficits in the area of situational awareness, including cognitive skills necessary for defensive driving, and strategic insights. We consider both these issues to be education and training related.
This is why bikesafer.com is here. We have resources to find training, to organize your skills practice, and to study up on defensive riding strategies.
We really need that new study, it will help with public policy, improvement in training materials and with individual rider decision-making.