A guide for survival on Indian roads
Posted 10 April 2010 - 01:50 PM
Watching the head movements of drivers through their windows and mirrors is an excellent way to anticipate sudden moves. Most drivers won't lunge left or right without first moving their heads one way or the other (even if they don't check their mirrors).
Trust your mirrors, but not totally
Your bikes mirrors can be life-savers, but they don't always tell
the entire story even if they are adjusted properly. In traffic, always buttress your mirror generated rear view with a glance over the appropriate shoulder. Do it quickly and you'll add an extra measure of rearview and blind spot knowledge to your info gathering tasks.
Never get between a vehicle and an off ramp
This sounds almost too simple but drivers who decide to exit at the last minute kill plenty of riders each year. The simple rule then, is to never position yourself between a vehicle and an offramp. Passing on the right is generally a no-no, but in this day and age it's sometimes necessary. So if you do it do so between exits or cross streets.
Cover your brakes
In traffic, you must often react very quickly, which means not fumbling for the brake lever or pedal. Always keep a finger or two on the brake lever and your right toe close to the rear brake pedal. When that cell phone-yakking dorks cuts across your path trying to get to the 7-Eleven for a burrito supreme, you'll be ready.
Make sure drivers and pedestrians can see you, even from a distance.
Ride with your high beams on during the day (as a courtesy turn it off when sitting behind someone at a light) and wear brightly colored gear, especially your helmet and jacket.
Be ready with power
In traffic ride in a gear lower than you normally would so your bike is ready to jump forward instantly if asked (not everyone rides open-class twins after all). Doing so gives you the option of leaping ahead instead of being limited to just using the brakes when that pickup suddenly moves over. The higher revs might also alert more cagers to your presence.
Traffic slowing? stay left (or right)
When traffic slows suddenly stay to the left or right of the car in front of you. This will give you an escape route if needed. It will also keep you from becoming a hod ornament if the car behind you fails to stop in time. Once you've stopped, be ready; clutch in, your bike in gear and your eyes on the mirrors. You never know.
Practice the scan
Constantly scanning your entire environment while riding-from instruments to mirrors to the road ahead to blind spots to your left and right and rear keeps you aware and in touch with your situation, and therefore better able to react. Dwelling on one area too long; watching only behind or in front of you, for instance, is just begging for trouble.
Left turn treachery-- Right Turn for us Indians, use right wherever left is mentioned
When approaching an oncoming car that's stopped and about to turn left, be ready. Your bright should be on so the driver can see you (during the day) but don't rely on this to save you. Watch the car's wheels or the driver's hands on the steering wheel if you see movement be ready to brake, swerve or accede, whichever seems best for the situation.
Study the surface
Add asphalt conditions to your scan. Be on the lookout for spilled oil, antifreeze or fuel; it'll usually show up as shiny pavement. Also, keep an eye out for gravel and/or sand which is usually more difficult to see. Use your sense of smell too; often you can smell spilled diesel fuel before your tires discover how slippery the stuff is.
Ride in open zones
Use your bike's power and maneuverability to ride in open zones in traffic. In any grouping of vehicles there are always some gaps, find these and ride in them. Doing so will separate you from four - wheelers, give you additional room to maneuver and allow you to keep away from dangerous blind spots. And vary your speed; riding along with the flow can make invisible to other drivers especially in heavy traffic.
Use that thumb
Get into the habit of canceling your turn signals often regardless of the traffic situation. A blinking signal might tell drivers waiting to pull into the road or turning left in front of you that you are about to turn when you aren't. So push that switch a few times each minute. Better to wear out that switch than eat a Hummer's hood, eh?
It's good to be thin
A huge advantage single-track vehicles over four- wheelers is their ability to move left and right within a lane to enable the rider to see what's ahead or through their windshields, seeing what's coming can give you lots of extras time to react.
More than one way out
Yeah, motorcycles fall down, but they're also light, narrow and hugely maneuverable, so you might as well learn to exploit their strengths when things get ugly, right? So don't just brake hard in a hairball situation. There's almost always an escape route. Swerving into Mrs. Smith's front yard could be a lot better then centerpunching the Buick that turned left in front of you. Always have an escape route planned and update it minute by minute.
This one?s easy and we'll bet most of you already do it; let larger vehicles run interference for you when negotiating intersections. If the bonehead coming toward you from the left or right is going to blow the light, better they hit the box van next to you, right? For the same reasons, don't lunge through an intersection as soon as the light turns green. Be patient and use the vehicles next to you as cover.
Practice quick safe stops on all road surfaces and conditions. Learn the distance you can stop within. If you go 75+ know how to stop from 75+. This gives you a better appreciation for speed and following distances.
Look as far ahead as possible especially around corners. Scan but use your side vision so you always have "one eye" looking ahead. Limit your speed so that you could stop within the distance you can see ahead. One day - you will have to stop.
My(not me of course, but the author:p) new one I'm working on is to keep track of how warm or cold your tires are during the ride. Know how much tracition you have available. My tires went cold last week as the sun went down and I slid the rear under power out of a turn.
The bike does not define you, but the actions you perform while on the bike do.
Posted 05 May 2010 - 11:07 AM
Motoroids Auto Infoservices Pvt. Ltd.:)
Posted 11 January 2011 - 03:18 PM
That is an International (read Non-Indian) system to trigger Signals at Night when Traffic is Least existent. It (possibly) consists of some kind of Pressure Sensitive Wire, which acts as a switch to trigger your signal to Green.
Now for my 2paisa.
There are 3 most important things that you need on Indian Roads
and Good Luck
Night Riding (High Beam Woes)
I never look at the Light Source, rather i always look straight ahead and concentrate on the road. similarly i also get my speed lowered at a controlled rate.
the reason for the above, the retina is the most sensitive part of the eye, and the portion that picks all the visual data is as small as a pin-point. therefore if u look directly at the light, that point is gonna burn for a longer time than actuals. if you look ahead, the portion which is less used in the retina is burned and recovers faster. this way you are not blinded for long, and can regain vision / confidence at a safer and faster rate.
Widen your Sight Sweep
I have personally made it a habit to keep sweeping the roads, RVM's and over shoulders, even if there is traffic or not.
The reason is fair enough, it gives me more useful-for-next-few-minutes data, regarding overtaking, braking, speed control, buggers of the road, etc. the secondary usefullness is that i get to see if there is anything worth snapping.
Pick up those free Soft Tissue Papers at Restaurants and Pizza Parlours
It helps to keep your Visors clean. Honestly who wants a bug splattered Visor. even a few sprinkles of plain drinking water, and a damp tissue can get rid of a lot of dirt and bugs. and lets face it, the visor can be replaced, but a wrong / confused decision due to filthy visor can cost you more, especially at night. and dry tissue / paper will scratch the visor, but a damp tissue / paper will not have the hardness required to scratch, and it will also pick up dirt and grime better, as the moisture creates a thin film of water molecules around the particles.
So much for now.
See ya Later, Alligator
~A Motorcycle cant sing in the streets of a City~
My Personal Snaps and Videos Web Album
My Private Site for my Rides, Drives and Craziness
My Youtube Channel
Blood Group- B-ve:D Attitude- B+ve:D:D
Posted 11 January 2011 - 06:09 PM
I picked it up from a US forum, so
The bike does not define you, but the actions you perform while on the bike do.
0 user(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users