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Roadside stopping and safety issues

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Old 06-04-2010, 09:26 AM
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Default Roadside stopping and safety issues

I don't know it all, but thought to post this blog I did on our RC website and glean any extra knowledge some of you may wish to contribute to it:

Since most merely think of just getting over and stopping, I thought some discussion about where and why would be pertinent here. I got this quote from the Harley forum on a thread about flat tires:
Originally Posted by trafficjams View Post
I've been working on the highways for years. It's incredible the amount of screws and nails that can be found in the breakdown lane just after bridge joints. They bounce out of the bed of contractors pick-up trucks at the tailgate hinge space. Eventually, after bouncing around the highway from traffic (with some of them once in awhile ending up in tires) they gravitate to the breakdown lane just beyond the bridge (or bump, or whatever). Don't pull over in a breakdown lane just beyond a bridge... trust me. You may end up broke down.
Many folks don't even realize that the dark areas in the center of a lane indicate a bump or dip - the oil hanging off the bottom of car engines is shaken off by the motion there, so this lets you know of a bump ahead - and as the quote indicated, garbage is often beside the road there that can give you flats.

When a group has a problem, if it's not a full-on emergency stop, of course we gravitate to the next wide spot or parking lot. But if we stop beside the road, it's best not to be in a curve where we can't be seen readily.
The rear bike should apply flashers, others the right turn signals.
If necessary, the rear rider can walk back to forwarn cars of danger on the shoulder, pointing them to move to the left.
Bikes should not be "clustered", but rather parked in a line, lessening confusion to passing traffic when on a shoulder. This lessens damage as well should a drunk enter the line - soldiers know to spread out a bit so the entire company can't be hit at once.

When leaving, if possible, the group can tighten up rather than try to enter traffic scattered over a long distance. This means less maneuvering to get the group back together later. As always, the Road Captain's signals should be passed down the line to the tailgunner.
It is not appropriate for the entire pack to move en masse onto the roadway most of the time. If traffic approaches quickly from the rear, the back riders would be in danger of being hit. When the Road Captain takes off, riders follow immediately one at a time, forming the alternating formation. This way if the back riders are surprised by rear traffic, they can abort the move and wait until it passes. The Road Captain usually will try to allow for the entire pack to have room to depart, but surprises happen.

99% of ALL accidents are caused by someone not paying attention to something. As a club, group, formation, bunch, gang, company, gaggle, pack etc...we all have to not only look out for ourselves, but EACH OTHER! We are not alone nor should ride as if we were. No one is left hanging or behind.
If the group takes off, and the tailgunner is missing; likely it is that he/she has stopped for a reason, possibly with one of you. In larger groups, the back rider will ride up forward and notify the Captain, but many now use intercoms or cellphone texts.
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