Dear Motorist aka Cager
This OPEN ROAD blog is our attempt to explain the actions and reactions of motorcyclists to drivers that are behind the wheel. Stan and I have decided to dedicate a portion of this blog to addressing the millions of motorists that share the open road with those of us that ride on 2 wheels. We realize that this blog will mostly reach motorcyclists. Our hope is that this content will be shared with friends and family resulting in a bigger audience of motorists (those on 4 wheels) so that we have an opportunity to educate drivers that do not ride about why motorcyclists do what we do while sharing the roads... Fingers crossed 🤞. If you have any ideas 💡 or suggestions- please send us an email to Hillon2Wheels@gmail.com
Motorcycles (in California) split lanes between vehicles (road sharing) because it is not safe to be exposed to the dangers that lurk behind us. Let’s face it...inattentive driving is on the rise. As a consequence rear end accidents seem to be happening much more often. To a motorist, it’s most likely a call to your insurance agent and some down time to get your fender and bumper fixed; but if the same accident occurred it could be and often is deadly to those of us on 2wheels. We split lanes for our safety to stay clear of a potentially dangerous situation. The benefit to those in cars is that we are one less car that you have to wait behind in traffic - cutting down on the congestion. It is not intended to allow bikes to ‘cut in line’ or ‘to get there sooner’. That being said - there will always be a few that abuse this - they are the motorcyclists that are zigzagging between lanes at a high rate of speed.
Those of us on 2 wheels appreciate those drivers that recognize that the space is limited between lanes and make room for motorcyclists. It takes a lot of skill and concentration and can be stressful - sometimes a motorcycle rider will braap their pipes to let drivers know that we are there and to please make more room for us. If you drive in California, you will occasionally see a car with their passenger mirror dangling by the door. If you see this it is very likely that it was removed by a motorcyclist. I personally do not condone or suggest anybody do this as I prefer to save my own skin first by removing myself from the dangerous situation but have seen it done many times over the years. There are two typical scenarios were this might happen, one is when a driver is trying to be sly and sees you coming and will try to squeeze you out on purpose. We always know when this is happening because we can see the driver looking in his or her mirror and intentionally turning into us. This is an extremely dangerous maneuver for a driver to take and could very easily severely injure or even kill a motorcycle rider. It is also very hazardous for your mirror if you chose to attempt this maneuver, plus I have also heard it is a very expensive fix at the auto body shop. If you do not already know - you can see a lot more of what is going on around you from a bike than when you are driving a car. We are typically seated higher with zero obstructions to our view giving motorcycle riders a whole new perspective of the road. The second scenario is when someone usually distracted by their cell phone just drifts into you at which point the mirror might just go away since they are too busy to use it in the first place. The point here is that there is plenty of road out there for all of us and a better understanding of each others needs will make the road less stressful and safer for all. Let us know your thoughts