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Wet weather riding - Loss of traction

Discussion in 'Video Logging' at netrider.net.au started by Highett, Mar 30, 2015.

  1. Went on a 400 km a group ride on Sunday, on the return trip the weather got nasty resulting in Goldwing in front lossing traction, the end result was not pretty, the rider sustained multiple injuries, ended up in the Hospital but is Okay given the bike flipped and landed on him.

    Once stopped to the side of the road, the rider was quickly assessed and assisted off the road and made a comfortable as possible, other riders got his bike and gear off the road and took up traffic control, an ambulance was called for the rider, and a tow truck was called for the bike, given the age and damage it most likely will be a write off.

    This highlights the dangers of those shiny wet patches and sunken troughs full of water on the roads in the rain, the bike would have weighted around 400kg, the rider fought like hell to keep her up but the back end just came around and did a 360 and that was it.

    Tires were new, Speed was 100kmh in a zone 110 stretch of hwy.

    My bike handled emergency braking in the wet very well and I was able to avoid being caught up in it, I have ABS & Traction Control, without it I think I would not been able to avoid the bike as it spun on the ground in front of me.

    Video attatched, its hard to see with the rain on the screen, look carefully and you can see the shiny wet surface as the bike loses traction.

    Left click on the image to view the video
  2. hope the rider is healing well
  3. Wow! Amazing how easy it is to lose the bike even on a straight piece of road. I hope the rider is OK.

    You're right , your bike did very well in the braking department.
  4. That's crazy, never thought that could happen on a straight bit of road.
    Once that tail started wagging there was no way of bringing it back especially with 400 odd kgs of weight.
    Hope the rider has a speedy recovery and is back on the bike in no time.
  5. Looks lile a bit of hydroplaning occured. Such a big bike must be impossible to recover from that. I hope old mate heals quickly.


    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. He really did fight like hell. That must have been terrifying.

    Speedy recovery to your friend.
  7. Damn, it must've scary as hell to see this happening in front of you at 100 kph. You did a good job evading the downed Goldwing, especially considering the weather.

    And I wish your mate full and quick recovery.
  8. Something in similar conditions happened to my friends several years ago on the Bass Hwy. There was an oil spill on the road and 5 out of 8 went down. No one seriously hurt, they just slid a fair way up the road - albeit quite quickly. There wasn't any traffic to contend with.

    The humourous part was, they'd just purchased several kilos of sausages for the intended BBQ that evening. The sausages ended up scattered and smeared all over the place. Onlookers were horrified till they realised what they actually were.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Here's why I cant understand people wanting to ride bikes that weigh more than small hatchbacks...
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Yeah when I saw that pool of water I immeditely tensed up as I expected the hydroplaning to follow. Happened to me in a car a few times and I would imagine it would be very scary on a bike. If it was raining that bad I would have been riding at 60-80km/h max even though it's a 110 zone. Just not worth the risk imo.
  11. You did well to avoid him. Was that a newish hot mix bitumen road or did it have patches? Newly applied hot mix patches just bleed kero in their first few heavy rains. They can be very slippery.

    I notice that he crossed the space between the wheel tracks - this space is often laden with contaminants - not on the same level (planet) as city streets at stoplights, but combine the potential for "picking something up" in this zone with a slight change in direction as he enters the right hand wheel track together with the aquaplane and there is a recipe.

    The waggle in the rear of his bike makes it look like he may have closed his throttle.

    That's a real good demonstration of the benefit of ABS.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. OMG! :eek:
  13. I would have thought a goldwing would be one of the last vehicles to aquaplane in the wet. But although it's hard to tell in the video, maybe he had the rear loaded with gear causing alot of wieght to shift away from the front wheel.

    And a demonstration about why you shouldn't be so close to the rider ahead of you, even if you are riding in a staggered formation.
  14. Firstly thanks to everyone who gave well wishes,

    I can confirm that he is home, I won't post photos of his injuries as they are graphic and would be poor form suffice it to say that he has some very deep cuts in the right elbow with abrasing on the right forearm and left elbow, 2 broken ribs on the right side and 4 broken ribs on the left side, some abrasions to the legs and knees, some small cuts on the face, abrasions on the fingers on both hands.

    And given the bike flipped and landed on him I think he was very lucky

    Please do not turn this into an AGATT carry on as every person who rides has the right to wear what they like and takes full responsibility for their own choices.

    It had been pisssing rain and it was 22 degres c, prior to the rain it was 32c and humid, typical Nth QLD weather for this time of year, a group of us had gone off for a BBQ lunch.

    Injured Ridder - Gear worn
    Open face helmet - no visor
    Dark glasses
    Collared tee shirt
    Fingeress gloves
    Std Jeans
    Riding boots

    For the record, I was wearing an open face helmet with a visor which was closed as the rain was flogging it down, I wear prescription glasses
    Collared tee shirt
    Full fingered summer leather riding gloves
    Jeans with re-enforced knees and hips
    Forma Riding Boots

    The members of the group were dressed in a simialr manner

    Photos of the road and details are below, Also after reviewing the vidieo in slow motion and walking the section of shiny tar, I can say that it was very slippery under my boots and I do not think he aquaplained as there was a deep depression in the trough where the back wheel slipped, In my view it was the back tire slipping side ways into the depression that caused this.

    I was following him for a long time through worse rain and saw him ride over other shiny tar sections and there was no slip.

    I can say that my choice of tires (PR4GT's) which are incredable on a wet surface along with the bikes ABS and Traction control prevented me from getting tangled up in the Goldwing, I was brakeing very hard and not a single loss of traction or slip, for the record my bike as it was loaded would weigh in at 350kgs easy, I weigh 120kg - almost half a tonne there.

    The Wing weights 350 dry so add fuel and a skinny rider, I would say about 450 kg would be close.

    So regardless of whether or not a bike has ABS or Traction control good tires are a must have, going cheap may save some dollars but when you need them just like what happened here, you wont have time to think, its pure reflex as you hit the brakes and start taking avasive action.

    So by all means discuss this in depth and and learn from it, but lets hold back with the negative stuff, as that is really not necassary in an adult discussion.

    Also one of my work collegues an experienced rider dropped his bike on a roundabout in town yesterday afternoon going home, regular route and no rain but we suspect diesel on the road was the root cause, find out tomorrow when he comes in

    Event details

    Loss of Tarction - Trough and depressing in road
    • Informative Informative x 3
  15. HighettHighett , thanks for the post. It just goes to show that you can come off in pretty much any situation if the elements and roads are against you.

    It could have been a lot worse as bikes falling on people can result in loss of limbs.

    Again, give your mate my best..

  16. Thanks Juz
  17. Wish your mate a speedy recovery. As stated above, just goes to show how dangerous our sport or passion can be. Straight road, good bike, experienced rider and he still laid it down. Speedy recovery dude,,,,,,,,,
  18. My take on this incident is that this is a case where you are probably better off riding down the centre of the road. Roads in Central Queensland are similar in that the tyre tracks get really worn and end up really smooth and get really slippery when wet. The centre is less worn and affords more grip when wet.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  19. I agree, sides of the road are more worn and also are often filled with gravel or other kinds of debris. And during the rain puddles are more likely to form there due to the road surface often being slightly elevated in the centre to let the water run towards the sides of the road.
  20. Good post. A good lesson for new riders and a reminder for those of us who have been riding a while.

    Given the circumstances, glad he's relatively ok.

    I regularly ride in the rain and when it's heavy or it's been heavy try to stay on the 'crown'. Except of course at intersections where the 'crown' is likely to have fuel/oil spills.