Dear Motorcycle Rider,
With respect, nobody here wants to spend summer weekends writing up your death notice for the Toronto Sun.
Nobody wants to creep your Facebook page, hoping to get information about you from your friends, and nobody wants to have to contact your family to get a statement after you’re dead.
Yes, everybody knows you operate your bike safely (well, maybe not you, death-wish dolt riding the R 1250 going 160 on the Gardiner,) but that’s beside the point.
It’s often not about you. A lot of car drivers can’t see you.
A lot of other car drivers are idiots.
In the off-chance you hadn’t noticed, people don’t stop at red lights any more, rarely signal lane changes, never leave the passing lane, fail to check their blind spot, tailgate, speed, drive under the influence and use their phones while operating their vehicle.
The worse people drive, the bigger your risk.
And your risk is big to start with.
Statistically, in a car-bike accident, the car driver is more often at fault.
The main cause of motorcycle accidents is the failure of other drivers to see you.
That’s important! High moral ground! But you’ll still be dead.
On a motorcycle, you are 27 times more likely to die in a crash than is the occupant of a car.
The reasons you’re likely to die are obvious: You are totally exposed out there on your bike. There’s nothing between you and the hard road. Or the guardrail or the hydro pole, or whatever you slide into.
More statistics? Motorcycles, mopeds and electric bikes are about 2% of the vehicles on the road, but they account for 10% of motor vehicle deaths.
The country’s largest trauma centre (at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre) found that motorcycle crashes cost the Ontario health care system six times more than car crashes do; they also yield five times more deaths.
But never mind all that. Think of the cost to your mum and dad when the police come to the door to explain how you died.
Think of your spouse having to explain to the kids that you won’t be coming home again.
Consider how your children will fare, growing up without you.
It doesn’t matter how old and experienced you are. It just takes one driver who doesn’t see you — turning left, changing lanes, pulling out — to knock you down.
If you can’t give up that feeling of flying, wind in your hair, total freedom etc. please take up skydiving. It’s less dangerous.
Just leave the bike at home. Everyone who loves you will be grateful.