Earlier I spoke of, okay, I ranted about the SUV that pulled directly in front of that eighteen wheeler. I thought since I did that, lets drop down quite a few sizes. Motorcycles. I do have a personal interest in this because my son rides a motorcycle.
It concerns me how easy it is for people to not see a motorcycle. They look, but they simply do not see the bike. I don’t know why that is, but then again, I used to drive a 1999 Ford Explorer, people didn’t see that either. I long ago lost track of how many people pulled out in front of me. The difference? In that Explorer I had a chance. On that motorcycle, he doesn’t have much of one.
Anyone who rides with me gets a laugh out of how I approach an intersection that has a stop sign and not signals. I look left-right then left and right again before pulling out. You know, just in case somebody on a bike comes barreling out of nowhere. But my son rides, I wouldn’t want to be any part of someone’s family member getting injured or worse.
Years ago when my son first approached us about getting a motorcycle, he knew I was against the idea. Because of the statement I just made. I told him that he was grown and could make his own decisions so I couldn’t say no. What I could do was ask him to take the motorcycle training class at the local college. He grinned that cocky grin and told me he was already signed up. At the time he brought all this up, we were on vacation out of state. He had followed us up in his car, after our conversation he drove back home. And went straight to purchase his motorcycle.
He did take the class, and they meant business. He was so sore that when I purchased some pain cream for his hands, he used it. He has been riding now for several years. Ever so often he will make a comment, but I’m not sure how much he tells me is true, and how much is to make me crazy. I think most of it is to make me crazy. I hope most of it is simply to make me crazy.
But this wasn’t just about him.
If that big black SUV had pulled directly in front of someone on a bike, obviously the bigger than them SUV would have won that round. The bad part is, that anyone on a bike, has no protection and someone would have gotten injured..or worse.
My son and others I know who ride motorcycles, have taught me a lot. Things such as how important it is to notice what is on the road in front of them. Loose gravel, like when the state worked on nearby roads and after heavy rains the road would be covered with lines of small, loose rocks.
Grass. Please y’all, when you mow, please do not mow in a manner where the clippings go onto the road. Bikes hitting that mess can slide right out from under the rider.
Again, watch for bikes. Put down the phone, stop messing with the radio, stop doing anything that would distract you from the road and driving. Focus on driving. Pay attention to who and what is around you. Look, then look again.
A traffic signal turning red is not a challenge to see if you can make it. Intersections are not meant to be part of some weird game of chicken.
I know of people who have been badly injured because someone wasn’t paying attention to their driving. I want my son to come home safely every time he goes off on that bike. I’m sure everyone else who has family members who ride want the same thing. For that to happen, we all have to pay more attention to what we are doing- driving. Not the phone. Not the radio. Not the coffe-soda-tea. The road and the traffic around us.
Because we want to go home as well.