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Red light accident and question about brakes

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by CruiseDaddy, Jan 4, 2016.

  1. About an hour ago a guy ran a red light and slammed into me. Some bystanders helped me roll my Z1000 to the side of the road, where numbers were exchanged (including those of witnesses - Thank God!). I'll have to get it towed as the fairing was rubbing against the front wheel, but of greater concern, the brakes didn't appear to work as I was rolling it down the hill into a driveway to get it off the road. I had to steer it into the kerb and drop it before it built up any more speed.

    Some specifics: When this happened, half of the brake lever had snapped off, but still had enough grip to pull the front brake. The engine was switched off and my zed was in neutral. The rear brake did not appear to work neither no matter how hard I tried.

    Later, when it was on the nature strip, I squeezed the brakes and it appears to grab as per normal. I was tempted to ride it home but didn't want to risk the brakes failing again. Would you have ridden it home?

    Can anyone enlighten me why this happened from a mechanical perspective? Do bike brakes operate differently from cars?
  2. Maybe.... I came off my Z last Easter and noticed that the front brakes only worked if I pumpled them. The problem was a slightly bent front disk; it pushed the pads back as it spun and only gripped after I pumped the lever to force the pads back out.
    • Informative Informative x 2
  3. I suspect the front brake system has developed a leak from the impact. Possibly lines stretched and ruptured, leaking brake fluid, hence no pressure. rear brake should work.
  4. If it did leak then it wouldn't work at all. If it worked on the nature strip then I think the pads are pumping up OK.
  5. After a heavy hit as rcheli32rcheli32 said the disk can have bent or just that the calipers have been pushed hard and opened a bit wide rather than their normal position hugging the disk. Best to pump the brakes a few times after a hit. This of course assumes the brake system has not developed any leaks.

    Hope you are OK, Have you had clearance from a Doctor? Many injuries can feel Ok but develop later.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  6. Glad to hear your ok CruiseDaddyCruiseDaddy as mentioned by cjvfrcjvfr have you had yourself checked over by a medical professional.

    Hope you are back on the road soon.

    Was the other driver insured?
  7. Thanks for your replies, guys. I'm OK; just kicking myself for not doing what I normally do, which is to look to both sides of the intersection, irrespective of whether the lights indicate go. I was stationary, the light changed to green, I accelerated, and all of a sudden a car came out of no where. I didn't even see him until he hit me in the middle of the intersection. I don't think he was trying to gun an amber. It just seemed that he wasn't paying attention.

    I'm a little worried because when I asked him point blank if his insurance company was going to pay for the damage, he seemed very evasive. Time will tell.

    "Many injuries can feel Ok but develop later." My shin's bruised and my brake hand has begun to become a little sore, which I'm at a loss to how it could have happened. Maybe a subconscious reflex of self preservation.

    I'll go back tomorrow to check the bike for brake fluid leaks. As stated, the brakes seemed to be fine but it gave me a bit of a scare when they weren't grabbing rolling down the hill.

    A final question: I'm not mechanically minded. Would you recommend a mobile bike mechanic to look it over first before riding it to a bike repair shop? Or would you just get it towed? Thanks in advance for your advice.
  8. What part of Melbourne are you in?

    Have a chat to Mark at Motorcycle Recovery and Transport he can do an inspection for you and also can transport the bike if you are not confident to ride it.

    MELB: MRT motorcycle recovery & transport
    • Agree Agree x 2
  9. Just get it towed to be on the safe side.
    Did you report this guy to the police?? I would esp with witnesses.
    Go get your shin and hand injuries sussed out pls. Did you hit your head at all? Check out your helmet as well. Adrenaline can mask all sorts of injuries.
    Esp as could be cTP claim if you have any injuries requiring further treatment. That way you won't ( read Shouldn't) be out of pocket.
    Hope you are okay.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  10. Hey man! I was there, the guy with the messenger bag. Good to hear you're more or less ok. Sorry for not being of much help, it seems I was a couple of minutes late to the scene to see how it happen. But feel free to PM me if you will need a testimony in regards to the visible damage to the bike and/or other guy's car.

    In regards to your injuries, I suggest getting a check-up with your GP. The hand is most likely bruised due to the impact that snapped the front brake lever. It was strong enough to make aluminum snap and the handlebar transferred the impact to your palm and fingers and might've caused a minor fracture.

    The brake issue might've been caused by the air that got into the brake lines while the bike was lying down. If the brake is still weak, you can check that by repeatedly pumping the brakes. The brakes will feel weak and bouncy in the beginning and will become progressively stronger. In this case you might have to bleed the brake lines.

    And I'm not sure if you should ride the bike to the mechanic yourself, unless it's really close to your place or you have no other way to get it there. Even with seemingly minor damage, it's still risky. Not to mention that the front fork, ripple clamp and the handlebar might be damaged. It's often not immediately obvious but might still cause handling issues.

    Anyway, good luck with all that.
    • Like Like x 3
  11. Lucky you made it out with relatively minor injuries, normally these types end up much worse.
    Don't ride it, the brakes have been compromised and its not worth crashing or further hurting yourself over it.
    Just add motorcycle transport to the tally of damages for insurance alongside a hire-car until its fixed.

    I recommend Wessley from AllMotorcycleTransport (0474 221 951)
    • Agree Agree x 1
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  12. Nasty and scary accident :-/
    Sounds like a brake fluid leak.
    If you have to push again in the meantime before repair just put it in gear and pull the clutch lever in to move the bike and release it to stop. Acts like a brake.
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
  13. It may be a leak, but it's not uncommon for this to happen on floating calipers that have had a whack. Pump them for a bit and then they will either come back or you will notice the leak. My money is on them being fine.

    But don't be suprised when you notice a lot of other shit wrong with the bike now that you have calmed down.
    • Agree Agree x 4
  14. I wouldn't recommend anyone else take the risk of riding it, especially if you are not mechanically oriented to give it a check out yourself first. But I rode after my crash to get home and get to my mechanics, I just took it really easy. Even without much brakes the Z has plenty of engine braking to do the trick with rear.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. Thanks again for your feedback, guys.

    Checked the bike today; no leaks and the brakes held pressure from yesterday. Will take it easy riding it to a crash repairer.

    Siilk, just wanted to thank you for your concern and help, in case I didn't properly convey it yesterday.

    Incidentally, a colleague from work asked me why I was limping (slightly) today, so told her about my incident. I was surprised and a little disgusted with the underlying judgement in her comment to me that it was somehow my fault because I choose to ride a "dangerous" form of transport, which is difficult for car drivers to see! Unbelievable. (n)
    • Agree Agree x 3
  16. What a moronic biatch
    • Agree Agree x 1
  17. People who don't ride don't understand so there is no point trying to explain it to them. And when I say ride I include bicycles, skateboards, horses as well as motorcycles as all these activities have more risk.

    But of course she was right that it's dangerous and we are difficult to see .. that's a couple of reasons why we do it LOL
    Don't get offended ... use the comment as an opportunity to explain SMIDSY, looming and motion camouflage etc ...
  18. Phew! the guy that hit me finally admitted liability. My bike has been transported to Peter Stevens, where i bought my bike.

    I tried to ride my bike home two days ago, but brakes too badly compromised. Had to pump it at least half a dozen times to get it to stop and it wouldn't hold the pressure. Therefore, too dangerous to ride.

    Nicholai_Chev: thanks for the referral. Wes from All Motorcycle Transport (0474 221 951) was fantastic. Answered my call immediately and talked me through my options. Great service and all around good guy. Highly recommended. Have permanently entered his number into my iPhone.

    Tried some other transport companies and some didn't return my calls. However, I attribute this to the Xmas-New Year holidays closure of most businesses.

    Incidentally, cjvfr, Mark's (wife?), told me that Motorcycle Recovery and Transport has a new owner. She gave a new number to call.

    Thanks for all your help, guys. Love this forum. Now into researching a go-pro. Don't want to be in the position of having to convince another guy that it's his fault. (May have to be careful though, as I may incriminate myself. LOL.)

    Thank God, they changed the filtering rules. I think we should have access to bike and bus lanes too if they're not used.
    • Like Like x 2
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  19. I tend to agree, the Bicycle lobby is rabidly against sharing the bike lanes though and would resist it with their considerable resources. Bus lanes I think would be a lot easier. The Hoddle St bus lane is already permitted for motorcycles and during its trial period does not appear to have caused any issues.

    PS: To tag someone so they get a notification, called a mention, just put an @ symbol in front of their Nic and it will automatically happen. e.g. CruiseDaddyCruiseDaddy
  20. Thanks Chris.