Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

Getting complacent - don't!

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by wasit2u, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. I've been riding 10 months now and have gotten very relaxed on the bike...and a bit complacent and lazy with the defensive/aware driving practices that were all so important to feeling safe when I first started riding. Well...Thursday last week, I pulled out of a lane of near stopped rush hour traffic and into the start of a bus lane which appeared empty...but wasn't - a bus was coming along at 90 kmh (well over the limit for the road) from an exit lane and crossing over into the bus lane (across a solid white line for the exit) and hit me. It doesn't matter that technically he was in the wrong for both speeding and crossing over a divider from an exit lane because had I been 2 cm further to the right I would be dead right now instead of just having scraped along the side of the bus and losing my right brake handle, tip of the handlebar and side of the exhaust. Somehow I stayed up and had no injury to myself. But I learned a very powerful lesson that a full shoulder check and being fully aware of everything going on around me is and always will be pretty damn important if I want to ride and live. Hopefully my wife will let me back on the bike after it is fixed and I'll have the chance to be as aware as possible and stay safe while enjoying my ride. I felt the need to share this with this forum as I am sure that many new riders reash this stage of complacency and I hope a few as possible have to have a life-threatening wake up call like I have had.

  2. It's easy to become complacent and go into auto-pilot after a while.
    I read somewhere that quite a few accidents happen after 2 years of riding due to falling into this trap.
    Sometimes we need a wakeup call, hopefully one that doesn't come too late.
    Stay Safe!
  3. p.s. thanks to the bikers who stopped to see if I was OK!

    I forgot to mention that the other thing I learned (or had reinforced) in my incident was that bikers are great people and look after each other. Thanks so much to the couple of bikers who took the time to pull over and ask if I was OK. And the first question from the insurance claims person, from the towie, from the service guy at the bike shop, etc. etc. was "Are you OK?" - who cares about the bike (really) - what a great feeling of community and genuine caring about each other - that warm feeling was enough to counter-act any reservations I had about getting back on the bike as soon as possible. Thanks everyone!
  4. Yoiks!

    That is a very timely reminder - thanks for sharing, and I'm glad to hear that you came out of it OK.

    Did you report the bus driver?
  5. I know how easy it is to go into auto-pilot mode. I'v riding everyday been for about 22 months now. In that time I found that I can slip into auto-pilot and not realize it until I'm around the corner from my destination. It was happening too often and in the end I kinda forced myself out of it. Dont know how but just get my self to concentrate on the road...

    Luckily you came out ok...
  6. I've been riding ~10 months now and worry about auto-pilot syndrome (APS) I find riding accident threads help me to avoid it as they discuss ways to avoid the collusion. Really good for learning things and relearning.

    Thanks for the thread! To good to hear that you are ok and that you have learned from the experience
  7. One sure fire way to break out of Auto Pilot mode (apart from scaring the crap out of yourself), is to get out on roads that you don't know too well. Go for a ride out in the country on a week-end - work on your skills, riding techniques etc...it'll wake you up!

    You travel the same roads commuting day in and day out - it gets a bit boring and tiresome, and you slip into lala-land.
    Try going home on different routes...vary the ride, get out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself...it'll help keep you alive :shock: :grin:

  8. I reckon vineyards are great for this, all these idiot tourists driving around pulling into vineyards at the last second. It is a good test of hazard perception.
  9. Shit. Can you get any luckier? :shock:
  10. Confident.




  11. As a learner I find this happens after a while on a ride.. its a mix of needing to develop my concentration and being overly confident. I find that talking to myself about what i'm doing and what i'm seeing around me tends to keep me on track.. although you do get a few confused looks from the pedestrians when you stop at the lights haha
  12. S'called commentary driving and is a widely used advanced driving training technique. Very effective when done right.
  13. i ride freeways all the time, so no time to ge complacent with the whole circus going around me all the time,

  14. Fantastic advice John........so true
  15. Too close! :shock:
    I'm amazed you managed to keep it upright.
  16. god damn - lucky.... you wont be complacent any more - believe me. ever since my crash i actually cant relax.. which is good in a way but second guessing every merging car is starting to give me the shits. you will view each and every car with a different eye now :LOL:
  17. So that's what you learn at those stay upright courses :eek:

    Jokes aside though, lucky lesson mate, I've gone ass up through complacency. My favourite one is when I stayed on...going down the freeway thinking about dinner, looked back at the road, massive rock, didn't have time to swerve, just stood up in the footpegs and wore the hit. Dented the rim with the hit.... moral of the story, keep your eyes open and think.

    oh and +1 to what raven said, his posts are always gold. I've picked up lots of stuff from reading his stuff, I would suggest doing a search for his posts, he gives great advice :)