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Close call today

Discussion in 'Your Near Misses - A Place to Vent' started by toadcat, Mar 15, 2012.

  1. All was good, I had just finished the only lecture of the day and the weather was perfect - time to ride home and have some fun on the way.

    I came onto the M4 just before the Harbour Bridge, going past Darling Harbour. I was traveling at a 'decent' pace. I started to move into the left lanes as there was cars in the two right lanes. As I was indicating left a Hilux about 100m in front moved into the left then quickly swerved back. At the time I thought it was a nice person letting me pass. By now all three lanes were full and this unfortunately meant that I couldn't see the stopped, broken down car in the left hand lane I was just about to merge into. At $1.10 or so. The car is at a dead stop about 30 metres ahead. FUC|≤There is almost nowhere to go - no breakdown lane and there's cars in the other lanes coming behind.

    Brakes go on HARD and I manage to get to about 60 or so while the rear slides around to the left. I'm going to have to go around it I'm thinking - there's no way I can stop here. FUC|≤.FUC|≤.FUC|≤.FUC|≤. I manage to split past it on the left between a concrete wall with a guard rail with a bee's dick to spare. It bashed my indicator (still attached) and took off my bar end to give you an idea how close it was. I still have two hands so that's a good thing, I guess. It was just pure luck they weren't right up against the wall as they were broken down which would have made it very interesting.

    Look as far as you can ahead. Maybe I could have seen it further back and avoided this.

    Keep the speed reasonable - in hindsight it was just too fast for the conditions. Too many cars and too many variables to do the speed I was doing at the time (and I had been going quicker beforehand too).

    There's always that once in a blue-moon occurrence you may have never seen before and may never seen again but you need to ride with this in mind and set your speed accordingly. Usually I can do $1.00 or so through here without any problems. Not today. I will be riding differently through here now - that's for certain.

    Practice allows you to stay calm in the heat of the moment. I have been practising braking heavily for over a year on every ride and cannot believe the help it was today. Had either wheel locked for more than a moment it would have been very messy. Threshold braking is an invaluable skill. If I had not filtered the amount I have (admittedly many are much better than me) I'm not sure if I could have judged the distance and it may have gone badly.

    Before you head check - look far ahead. While you're checking your blindspot (which you should always do) you're not looking ahead and things can sneak up like they did today. Do it quickly but thoroughly.

    Don't outride your sight - if you can't stop in the distance you can see ahead of you it will come down to sheer luck like today in having a gap to avoid it. Not every situation is going to be like this. I was very lucky to even get the small gap I got today.

    Avoid energy drinks that get you hyped up before your ride. I had just finished a big can of Mother and I think it contributed somewhat to the risky-ish way I was riding. A clear head is always best when you're riding.

    I think I might go buy myself a lottery ticket but I might have already used up all my luck!

    Note the small nick on the clutch lever that was not there before.


    The broken down car was where the blue Honda is in the picture.. Coming towards it with traffic in the other lanes meant it was hidden. I shudder to think what could have happened if I had hit the barrier. Someone would have had an interrupted meeting with me going through their office window...

    I wonder what the person in the car was thinking as I went past :|
    • Like Like x 1
  2. phew, lessons learned well done
  3. Mate thank god you're ok, well done for keeping it upright after losing the bar end!!

    had brief 'oh shit' on the way in to work while filtering 'slowly too' a quick 'headcheck' and under estimating the distance between the corner of a bus and me, missed it by an inch [miles compared to yours tho]
    glad you're ok!!
  4. How's the underware? Was there anyone in the car?

    Be careful speeding there, just above the fish markets before the Azac bridge is an absolute favorite spot for coppers. And it's only 60.
  5. glad you're ok, and, yes, vision as far ahead as you can and anticipation IS the key

    and just to add, if you HAD crashed, the Police WOULD have been able to say that speed was a factor

    Your analysis of the situation is very good, too!
  6. Glad you're ok.

    Ride on...
  7. Close call mate, glad you're OK.

    target have a special on undies :)
  8. Very lucky the broken down person wasn't changing a tyre.
  9. There would be no room for them to get out, have a look at the gmaps link at the bottom of the post
  10. i had a similar experience today(sort of but not really :) ) on the way home, saw some cops on the side of the road near the werrington maccas and looked at my speedo to double check i was under and when i looked up traffic had stopped. being the total noob i am i jump on the rear to much locking it up with a screech that no copper could mistake (this happened about 20mt away from them), pulled up well behind the car in front waited for a holler or siren/lights never happened so i rode off. will teach me for not keeping my eyes up and panicking and jumping on the rear
  11. you gave some fantastic advice in your lessons learned list. outstanding.

    but the odd behaviour of the hilux should have been a red flag
    • Like Like x 1
  12. That was one heck of a close call, toadcat. To even imagine the route you were forced to take makes me shudder.

    Your lessons and observations are, as usual, relevant and level-headed. I can especially relate to this one, having been nearly caught out some time ago:
    Glad you made it out in one piece.
  13. I am happy you're fine .sounded really terrific to me.thank goodness you ok
  14. Rider's murphy law: The second you take your eye off the traffic in front, is the moment they all come to a stop. Hah.

    Good work on the avoidance for you and the OP.