Let me start out by saying I am a massive believer in personal choice and it is up to everyone to make their own decisions about their safety on a bike. I do not for one second believe that ABS should be compulsory. Last October on my regular commute home I was approaching the intersection of Lonsdale & King Street in Melbourne. Traffic was moderately heavy. As I approached the intersection I spotted a mercedes waiting to right across Lonsdale. I recognise the potential danger and I look directly at the driver to see if he is paying attention - he is starting directly at me - I know he has seen me. I continue to scan for other danger. As I enter the intersection the mercedes suddenly takes off - 'fcuk!'. My brain ignores all logical thought and survival reactions take over, my right hand mashes the front lever of my Dorsoduro, the front locks and I go down just as collide with the side of the mercedes. The next few seconds are a blur, but I remember sliding down the road watching my bike sliding in front of me, pieces flying off in all directions. As soon as I stop sliding the pain starts - serious pain. I once had the end of my finger crushed off in a surf boat rowing accident....that was a 1/10 compared to this pain. Apparently I ended up going under the car and while I was geared up well, there's only so much gear can do when a car runs over your knees. 3 operations and 3 months in hospital later, and my knees will never be the same again. No running, jumping, squatting, footy, tennis, etc. ever again. The point of that sob story was to explain why I am now a firm believer in ABS on bikes. You see, I have been riding for 7 years, commuting every day for 2 years and regularly practiced emergency braking. But you know what.....no amount of E-Braking practice can ever replicate a real, ass puckering, life on the line emergency stop. I don't care what you think....unless you have experienced it you just have no concept of how quickly shit happens when things go wrong. I'm sure a lot of us have read the magazine articles where they put some gun rider on a non-ABS bike and he outbrakes the ABS equipped bike. But that misses the point entirely. To paraphrase Terminator....ABS is a machine, it does not get cold, it does not get tired, it does not get distracted by the hottie in a low cut dress, it just does its job - every. single. time. (ok 99.99% of the time). Some riders can outbrake ABS some of the time. Some riders can overcome survival reactions some of the time. But the fact is, most riders who think they can do better than ABS are fcukING KIDDING THEMSELVES. The point of this post is not to say that everyone with a non-ABS bike is going to spontaneously combust into a ball of flaming death, or that they should go and trade in their bikes on one with ABS. But, I do want to get people who are looking at buying a new bike to seriously think about opting for the ABS option if you have the choice. Likewise for traction control. Most of the systems on new bikes are now switchable. Certainly all the supersport & superbike systems are, so if you want to hit the track or want less intervention you can adjust the levels at which the electronics kick in. The extra grand or so is money well spent in my book. Now, I'm sure some people will reply that ABS is a passive safety device and that good roadcraft is always better, etc. Let me say, I completely, 1000% agree - prevention is always better than the cure. But the fact is, humans are well...human. Cagers make mistakes. Riders make mistakes. Stress and panic increases the likelihood of making a mistake. There is no way to explain how quickly things happen in a car accident - there is no thinking time, your brain just acts. ABS is nothing more than an excellent backup plan when your brain makes the wrong decision. My reactions failed and it cost me dearly. It costs some other people much more. Give it some thought. Good riding.