Triple digits on public roadways - Sportbike Forum: Sportbike Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-31-2007, 06:26 AM Thread Starter
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Triple digits on public roadways

It wasn't actually on this site that I saw it, but there were more than a few folks who thought there was nothing wrong with doing triple digits on public roadways. Since I consider these folks to be interested in a single thing (themselves), let me frame the risk with that behavior using an anecdote that just occurred 5 minutes from my house, with a little picture.

We have a road with very mild hills (more like stretched elevations in the roadway) on a road with 55mph posted limits. Last Monday I noted the county had shut off two miles of it and the wife told me there was a bike accident where a pickup had pulled out across the roadway and the bike T-boned it. Typical, and I naturally assumed the p/u driver just didn't see the rider (again, typical).

A day later my wife read an article that they determined the rider was going in excess of 100mph and that because of the landscape, the very short time the rider was in a very slight valley the driver had looked and saw no one. Fortunately, the p/u driver wasn't hurt. The motorcyclist is dead. This is far from the first time this kind of thing has happened in this area, all on different roads. And ask any northern IN resident and they'll tell you we have very flat land.

I post this merely as a reminder that riding at unreasonable speeds (>20% of posted limits?) is not just unwise, it can easily become deadly. This is especially true where driveways come onto the roadway.

Please be careful out there.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-31-2007, 07:40 AM
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Well, I'll be the first to admit that I'm no saint, and I do see triple digit speeds on the road fairly routinely.

However, I do NOT speed in town and do NOT drive excessively fast on the interstate (preferring to stay 5-10 mph ahead of surrounding traffic). When I do let it rip, it is usually in a short burst, it is always in an area far away from the city/traffic, and I always choose a stretch of road that is free from any intersecting roads. (don't want to have what happened to your example happen to me) No matter how empty or deserted the road is, I will not open her up if there's any intersecting roads, even if it is just a little, one-lane, dirt farm road. I'm pretty paranoid about that. Undulating hills like in your example?- also a big no-no, I don't care how long and straight the road is- you've got to have a very long and clear line of sight at high speed. Living out in the wide open West allows me the luxury of being very selective when picking suitable locations to get my speed fix.

I'm not making excuses for myself or saying that this is a safe practice by any means. I could easily get creamed by an animal jumping out onto the roadway for example, and I know that. But personally, I feel that it is unrealistic to expect sportbikers to not push their bikes a little. Triple digit speed is part and parcel of what these machines are about. But as I always preach to everyone I ride with-"Be smart where you speed." If you're gonna do it, choose your location wisely.

"Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life son." - Vernon Wormer.- Dean, Faber College.

Last edited by zxrider; 08-31-2007 at 08:10 AM.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-31-2007, 08:06 AM
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I live in a place where, if you aren't travelling 15-20 mph faster than the posted speed limit, you will get rear ended.

I regularly ride the I-5 in Northern California, and this is a freeway with a posted speed limit of 70, stretches of 50 miles or more with straight, open roads with no exits, and traffic that normally moves 80-90 mph. Going triple digits here really isn't that big of a deal - you can go 100 all day and not have to worry about hitting anything. Yeah, I'll do triple digits sometimes. I'll normally go 80-90 mph, with the flow of traffic. Why this is a big deal I don't know - I've driven on the Autobahn before, where normally one goes flat out at top speed, and the Germans don't seem to have a problem with it.

But I won't do that in town. I'll go with the flow of traffic, which is STILL normally 15-20 mph faster than what the sign says. Or slow as appropriate for traffic or pedestrians, and stick strictly to the speed limit or slower through a school zone. You just have to use common sense.

Speed doesn't kill, stupidity and the reckless application of speed does. Speed and traffic laws would be structured very different if the Tee were in charge. We wouldn't have penalties for speeding per se, but strict penalties for driving unsafe.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-31-2007, 09:27 AM
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I live in the central part of B.C. Canada so that means in the center of the Canadian Rockies. Fact is of my 60 yrs of riding only 1.5 was on flat land being Winnipeg Manitoba Cdn., along with 5 yrs up in Edmonton, Alberta Cdn of where most of my riding was 50% of the flat, but other 50% being in the Rockies. Since '52 I have lived in the Cdn Rockies.

When I am in town or city I try to travel at the speed limit, to sometimes slower, like around were I live as they are all short street/avenues due to the town is on a valley slope & many are without paved sidewalks so anyone for a walk or walking to another home are walking on the paved roads as are their kids!!

The Hwy 97 leading to the turn off up to the Kootney or going to the west or east & one is often forced to travel through the city, town or another city like Penticton has a Channel Parkway along a channel waterway from Okanagan Lake to Skaha Lake with a speed of 35mph rather then main city roads of 30 mph & even the main street being 15mph---I am not kidding you----of where I will scoot along at 45 or 50mph & rarely do I pass any vehicles though many cages clock much faster speeds.

Mind you when I hit the mtn roads with all the ups & downs to the continual bends I am usually clocking a bit over Max which can be 50, 55, or 60mph AND often knowing these roads, like the palm of my hand I will scoot up to 85mph though rarely 160KPH being 100mph yet sometimes in passing two or three cages, as I ease off the throttle, I will see the speedo at 185kph--115mph. Though do note there is no cross road or no oncomming road.

True even at the max speed limit speed of 50 or 80kph a deer can come out & ding you in. AND I have some real steep & longer hills where I sometimes take myself up to 220KPH or bit high speeds (like we are talking about 137 or 140 plus mph) though always uphill where police are not watching for speeders AND no oncomming road as these are some of the passes out of this valley terrain.

My record, as of to-date TAP WOOD, of any form of automotive accident with my m/c or my cage is NIL. True the bikes have been hit while parked, & so have my cage, I have accidently or intentially forced off the hwy to in some cases on a bend there is a cage on my lane comming at me, so it is evasive action of where I will pop into an orchard or have to take to the ditch FOR had I NOT even been moving I would have been hit & possibly killed. Yet back in '03 I was riding far, far to fast on some twistice. hit some sand to lose front end for a second, but sort of regained it in the crap off the road. Still made it home, on my own with a damaged bike & self some 51 miles through three towns & one small city---bike looked totalled & wanted to fall to left or right, but it was just the fairing being ripped off plus some other parts easy to replace. Personally I took longer to recover from two ribs fractured along with right shoulder muscles front & back had been toren a bit.

To be honest just 3 days after the above I went to my Honda 929 & realized, with some agony, I could actually drag my leg up & over the bike, so in for protective rideing gear, to start short runs like 1 hr the first day to a month later on I was back to clocking 7 or 8 hrs with injoyment. YES I was lucky.

Last edited by Smitty; 09-04-2007 at 08:46 PM.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-31-2007, 09:46 AM
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76 years old and still seeing 140mph on the speedo.

You go Smitty!!

"Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life son." - Vernon Wormer.- Dean, Faber College.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-31-2007, 11:23 AM
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Not exactly zxrider for I cannot seem to make changes in my profile like the date still something else their compter, rather then July 13th 1930, put down & so of July I3 slipped into 77 yrs of age.

Still with the itch to not only ride, but hike around the mtn roads & take the bends or switches in with speed.

Last edited by Smitty; 09-04-2007 at 08:47 PM.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-04-2007, 03:03 PM
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I also admit that I push triple digit speeds out there, however rare. Usually its to keep up with a riding friend. One of my riding buddies likes to pull that sort of speed on the highway while weaving between cars, and I follow, although I really, really don't want to. I said once "yeah, I've pulled 140 once on rt. 33 just for fun..." he replies "I've done that going through campus!". I thought to myself.. 'are you fucking stupid?' He's been riding for 10 years as well.

At any rate, its hard for people to understand just how fragile the situation is until you see pictures of some messed up people on the net or see an accident in real life. Stuff would still happen to people like me, captain slow, but its a lot worse when you're hauling it twice the speed limit.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-04-2007, 05:57 PM
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I am from Indiana too. I live in the central region about 30 miles north of Indianapolis. I always hate to see and or hear of things like this! It's just kind of a reminder to ourselves when you are out there acting a fool, and riding in triple digits we are not invincible.

I know in Indiana the riding season ends about late October or early November. After it's all said and done I thank GOD that I made it through another riding season without any accidents or worse!
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-05-2007, 02:11 AM
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I will also admit to triple digits on the highway. However that is not in rural areas, it's in northern Maine where 90mph is the average speed on the highway. Up there the speed is set by the big rigs and not by the signs. There is a time and a place for most things. You just have to be smart when it comes to the choices you make. most streets are not really the best place to push your limits.

If you are riding a bike to find those limits and you don't have a safe place to do that then I think that the dirt would be the best option. think about it, a street bike is capable of high speeds, but speed is relative. 40 might seam slow on the street, but try 40 on a foot path and it means a whole different thing.

140mph is an implausible speed in town, but in a place where the bears out number people with 100 miles of two lane highway with traffic 3-5 miles apart it doesn't seam all that unreasonable.

I just really want a bike with a turbo, because their are those times when you pull up too a stop light next to a cop, and I think a really loud PPTTTSHIIISHHHHHHHH would make his day. =P
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-07-2007, 06:32 AM
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Southern Ohio has tons of roads like that.
Rual area, spaced houses, farmlandish, asphalt, 55 posted, small rolling hills and depressions, most curves are short and tight, most curves are right after hills, and blind as hell.
Very dangerous.

If that photo is of the actuall collision.....that dont look like a 100 mph impact to me. Not even 60.

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