This area is directly related to Rider Education and Training. We recommend, at a minimum, that all riders take a Basic Rider Course and any other advanced rider training you like, see the Rider Ed section.
There is no substitute for training.
We suggest some basic strategies.
- The MSF scan - evaluate - execute process (download MSF training manuals). This helps us maintain a mental map of the road situation, including other road users and possible sources of risk.
- Assume that other drivers are out to get you. Motorcyclecruiser.com on street paranoia. This strategy follow's Sun Tsu's advice, to pay attention to your enemy's capabilities rather than assuming his intentions. Some bikers I know, like my buddy Special ED, follow this strategy. Of course, this could be carried too far. We still recommend conspicuity rather than the camouflage that might be suggested by this approach.
- Follow the pilot's strategy of flying from one potential crash landing site to another. This is also a Special ED strategy that I have heard from other bikers. It fits in with the MSF scan - evaluate - execute process, in that one of the things being looked for and evaluated is ways out of the current traffic situation. In effect, the mental map created by SEE now includes potential safer places which are pre-evaluated and ready to roll out in an emergency.
- Use the rules of the road. Clearly indicate your intentions and ride in a courteous and predictable way.
- Group Riding is partly a safety strategy. It has many potential safety benefits. Those cited include creating a more conspicuous presence and maybe getting more respect from other road users. Most groups have safety policies, and riders can help each other with advice and extra eyes looking out for bike defect and road hazards. It must be said that there are also extra risks in group riding, including crashes with other bikes in the group. As always, training is the key to reducing risk. We have a special section on group riding (see tab).
We put some notes on the elements of Scan - Evaluate - Execute process in the tabs above.
- the Scan Plan is an interactive visual road plan with clickable SEE notes.
- The Threat Matrix shows the tactical levels in SEE and prioritizes the tactical levels of ultra defensive riding
- the Scan List is a text version of the scan plan.
- Maneuvers is a series of articles on executing the actions you need to get you and the bike towards your destination.
- Group Riding is a special section on the Group Riding strategy.
- Highway is a special section on restricted-access highway riding and trucks.
There are a huge number of resources you can find on the Web and by talking to old bikers, and we have a selection of these.
Check if you are ready to ride.
Ride safe. Ride safer if you can.