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Ever hit by debris from oncoming truck?


KeithH

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Hello all,

 

I've been riding an 1150R for a couple years now and was returning from a day trip to the NC Outer Banks. About 10 miles from home, I was on a 2 lane road at about 60 mph. Just as I passed a log truck that I was meeting head on, I saw some pine bark peel off and head toward me. A piece about 3x6 inches hit my left hand and smaller pieces hit my chest and helmet. All I really had time to do was hold on to bars tight, and close my eyes (sorry, naughty reflexes). My left hand was pretty sore and bruised but that was about it. Probably lucky after being hit at a closing speed of >100mph. I always try to pass vehicles with scary loads, but I was wondering how often people have been hit when meeting head on?

I've been reading these boards for a long time and seen really good discussions.

Thanks,

Keith

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Bart Anderson

A motorcyclist was killed in northern MN last year when a tube (the kind pulled behind a boat) flew out of a trailered pontoon going the other direction on Hwy 169 near Mille Lacs.

 

On a related note, a local news channel recently did a piece about unsecured loads in trucks, and the DOT guy they interviewed said they ususally end up ticketing 80% (!) of the drivers they stopped at checkpoints for failure to properly secure their load.

 

Be careful out there...

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Hello all,

 

I've been riding an 1150R for a couple years now and was returning from a day trip to the NC Outer Banks. About 10 miles from home, I was on a 2 lane road at about 60 mph. Just as I passed a log truck that I was meeting head on, I saw some pine bark peel off and head toward me. A piece about 3x6 inches hit my left hand and smaller pieces hit my chest and helmet. All I really had time to do was hold on to bars tight, and close my eyes (sorry, naughty reflexes). My left hand was pretty sore and bruised but that was about it. Probably lucky after being hit at a closing speed of >100mph. I always try to pass vehicles with scary loads, but I was wondering how often people have been hit when meeting head on?

I've been reading these boards for a long time and seen really good discussions.

Thanks,

Keith

 

aha, never been hit by flying bark but I used to travel a road out here, hwy 93 to work every morning and almost always braced for something as I passed gravel haulers.

 

One day a rock about the size of my cell phone hit my head just above the facemask and left a nice nick on the helmet, scared the living crap out of me

 

had another friend break his foot when a gravel hauler had an unsecured rear tailgate and was dropping rocks as it went, one hitting his foot. he got to work complaining how bad it hurt and then realized he couldnt get the boot off from the swelling.

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I had a pickup truck hauling cordwood round a bend towards me. About the time we passed a log rolled off the back of the truck into my lane. I had about 4 feet to react and ended up hitting the log which flipped on end and levered my Harley airborn via the crash bar and floorboard (bending both as well as the brake rotor and fender as well). Somehow (I'll never know how) I kept the bike upright and got it stopped. Fortunately the elderly gentleman driving the truck stopped and appologized as he gave me his insurance information. His insurance covered it all. thumbsup.gif

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I saw some pine bark peel off and head toward me.

Last year in Washington State, two fellow geophysicists were killed when an oncoming logging truck lost its load of logs just as it was going by them. The logs sheared off the top of their truck and killed them both. We think (hope) they both died instantly. They were driving out to pick up some GPS stations that were deployed to monitor a slip event that occurs on the subduction zone under the Pacific Northwest every 14 months.

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Unsecured or improperly secured loads are always a great danger out there!

Several years ago a buddy of mine was riding in western North Carolina, going to the Boone Rally, when in a curve an oncoming truck hauling a huge buldozer lost the unsecured dozer blade. The blade bounced off the trailer and across the road in the path of my buddy on a new R1100R. He had no choice but to lay it down, and hit the blade. He credits his Aerostich for saving his hide and bones. He was left limping around for a few days from where his knee struck the blade as he went over it.

Logging trucks, dump trucks, smashed car haulers are always cause for extreme caution!

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...Logging trucks, dump trucks, smashed car haulers are always cause for extreme caution!

 

As are landscaping trucks, anything vehicle with a ladder thown on top, and private pickup trucks hauling everything and anything. More than once, I have encountered an aluminum ladder just sitting in the road. Sometimes it is intact, others it has already been hit once or twice and is differing sizes of twisted aluminum shrapnel.

 

 

.

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If feel lucky in that all three incidents I've had took place while I was in the cage. In the first, while in what we call here in Indy 'the Spagetti Bowl' (a small section of convoluted interstate near the downtown area), I saw 'something' large and vaguely reflective fall off of the truck in front of me. As it hit the concrete and shattered, my car was sprayed with glass; turned out it was a ~5' by 5' panel of window glass. No damage to the tires, which suprised me, but a few pieces cracked my windshield, and it had to be replaced.

 

About a month later, in the same spot, as I tried to pass a truck, as soon as I had a view of the left lane (where I was headed; this was in a curve on the interstate), I saw a large chunk of metalwork of some kind less than two seconds away (turned out to have been a portion of a car frame that had fallen off of a recycle truck): no time to swerve, or anywhere to go if I did.

The debris jammed up under the car and impaled the gas tank, and as I tried to pull over, I could see a spray of gasoline and sparks trailing behind me down the road. I haven't a clue why it didn't ignite. When the police called my wife, they said my car was on fire on the highway (not true) and scared the crap out of her tongue.gif

 

In the last incident, a 2' by 2' piece of drywall blew out of a dumptruck (just bad luck; it had a tarp securing the load, but this piece just found it's way out) and nailed my hood and windshield; it only left cosmetic damage, but it caused a massive momentary increase in 'pucker factor'! If I'd been on the bike, it probably would have taken me out.

 

Moral of these stories is that I'm very cautious about road debris, and try very very hard to watch out for such traps, and have a good view of the road ahead so I'll have time to maneuver away from such crap.

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Does a mattress flying off the roof of a car count. Either 1980 or 1981 traveling west on the Long Island Expressway,

ON a cold Feburary morning at the Nassau Queens line, seeking shelter from the cold I had my HD police special FLH 80 wide open so I must have been doin 80. The box spring and mattress separated covering the right and center lanes,the left lane was occupied by a skiding car. Stopping was not an option just as the edge of the mattress hit the asphalt, so did my front tire I closed my eyes expecting the worst the next thing I knew the mattress was 30 ft. behind me.

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Related story almost! Coming home from work I was in my pick up and on the interstate. A mobile home was being towed North as I was South. One of the wheels came off went through the median and became airborn just enough to barely go above my truck. If it had been a foot lower I bet my windshield and my head would not have been enough to stop it!

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On the last trip I was hit twice. Once on the way from Ouray to Grand Junction from a truck coming the other way that was covered in mud. We were both going at least 60mph. As the truck was coming at me I saw something being hurled at me from his rear duals, it was a large chunk of dried mud. The chunk hit my foot and felt like a pitcher thowing a fastball(I was wearing good boots). The second time was on the another two lane that I can't remember I got hit with a rock in the front fairing just next to the headlight. It was a very loud explosion and took a large chunk out of the paint about the size of a quarter, I am glad this did not hit me, touch up paint is better than stiches or worse!

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On the way back from Alaska this summer I almost got beaned by a fist-sized rock that bounced off my buddies' GS, after a Subaru threw it at him. It all happened in super-slow mo and the three of us (Me, Him, and the Subaru driver) all saw it happen. I dodged it just as it went past my noggin. It knocked a hole into his side bag that a baseball would fall through. If you're gonna stay close to your riding partner to avoid the little rocks thrown up from the gravel road, you better have quick reflexes for the big ones..

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So far on the bikes I have been lucky, but that may have something to do with a previous experience in a car.

 

I was behind a pickup that was extremely overloaded with hay bales one morning on a two lane highway. I was keeping my distance, just in case, and that turned out to be a good thing. An 18 wheeler came towards us in the other lane and the wind off the semi sent many bales of hay flying into the air, directly at me. The wife let out a blood curdling scream and I layed on the brakes and steered the car through the obstacle course of hay. Luckily the ditch on the far left was very smooth and flat right there, because that is where we ended up in my effort to dodge the flying hay bales. All turned out well for me and I drove away unscathed. They dumb a$$ hauling the hay had a lot of work to do.

 

Ever since that day, I pay attention to what is being hauled near me.

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here's one for ya...

About 15 years ago I was traveling past a construction zone on an interstate. Turns out they were using a back hoe to scrape/"peel" of those reflective disks they glue on the road. Well as my luck would have it, a disk skittered off into my lane of traffic. The car in front of me ran over it and launched it into the air and propelled it directly at my cars front window. I saw it all happening but I could not do a single thing excpet close my eyes Just before impact. End result: a shatterd front window and a major "pucker".

 

My worse fear is dealing with flying objects on my bike...it freaks me out.

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wrestleantares

I was somewhere between Nashville and Memphis when the entire back end of a mobile home fell off a truck in front of me.

 

I had to go through the debris with nothing but prayer to aid me. It was a scary moment.

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On the bike have had:

1) an empty plastic bag whip off a landscaper truck and plaster to the forks

2) road kill lifted skyward over my head by semi in front

3) 2x4 slide off pickup in front

4) extension ladder slide off roof of painters van as they left stop light -- slow motion, was actually kinda funny

 

In the cage while in a two-lane construction zone saw the hubcap separate from oncoming car and make one bounce before hitting my side mirror. By then had arm off open window and ducked my head into center floorboard. Shattered mirror glass all over inside of truck and ripped the rear window tint to shreds -- spent 30 minutes at a convenience store getting my wits back.

 

Worst ever was heading east from El Paso in the middle of the day when Ford Explorer in front of me (loaded to the gills) slowly ran off interstate to the right, overcorrected and made three barrel rolls before sliding into the center median. Whole time spewing clothes and household stuff. Driver was conscious but immobile -- stayed with her while my crew got her stuff off the highway. Thankfully a paramedic stopped about 10 minutes later and took over until the lifeflight showed up. bncry.gif

 

Oh yeah, can't forget the guy in front of me hauling his boat until it popped off the trailer ball and kept going at 50 mph through an intersection before wrapping around a tree. It slowly drifted left into the other lane and passed the pickup, the little dolly wheel in front smoking. lmao.gif

 

Cheers,

Gary

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This tread reminds me of the time I was following a race car hauler at about 70 mph on I 20 when the left rear tire came off the trailer rolled along behind the trailer; until it turned left, went up the embankment, smashed a farmers fence and disappeared into a cow pasture. Don't know how many cows died that day but it sure woke me up!

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I'm not sure this is worse, but on a bike it would have been...

 

I was driving along on the Interstate and the Ford F-150 in front of me suddenly lost its wheel...

 

I mean the whole shaft to the wheel cracked and the left front tire and wheel assembly fell off. It was night, so I didn't see it - just a buncha sparks from the truck as it started dragging what was left of the axle. About 200 feet later, the wheel (which kept bouncing on its merry way once freed from the axle) landed right in the middle of the hood of my 5 month old Saab convertible, hit the windshield and bounced over the top. (I did not see it coming at all).

 

On a bike, things wouldn't have been so simple methinks...

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I was hit by a 4x8' sheet of particle board that flew off the back of a pickup truck in relatively heavy traffic on I-5 just north of La Jolla. Stopped my heart momentarily, and I rode through it and managed to pull over completely on sphincter-pilot as far as I can tell.

 

A couple years later and I still find teeny bits of particle board in odd crevices.

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louisvillebob

Reminds me of a few years ago. I was on the beltway around Knoxville, about 60 mph, was passed by a lowboy. Traffic all around me. A bit later, I saw a tennis ball-sized rock bouncing down the highway. It caught me on the fairing, exactly in front of my rt knee. It knocked a big chunk out of the fairing. Better fiberglass and repaint than orthopedic stuff. Thanks be for a sturdy fairing.

Moral: There's plenty of hazards out there.

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A couple years later and I still find teeny bits of particle board in odd crevices.

Sorry about this Sean, but I can't help myself - I hope those odd crevices are on your bike!

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Sorry about this Sean, but I can't help myself - I hope those odd crevices are on your bike!

 

grin.gif

 

Ha! But if I found some elsewhere, it wouldn't necessarily surprise me!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Maybe slightly off topic, but we have a friend who was riding his Harley, notice a large bird circling him and somewhat stalking him, sure enough the bird went back up and made a dive bomb for him and knocked him straigh on in the chest. Knocked him off the bike and other than bruises and scrapes and being freaked out, all was well. I belive he said it was a large turkey.

 

My brother is a welder and has worked at the weight scales and told me that the springs on most semi trucks are just a bomb waiting to go off and he said that when they pop off, they are like a deadly missle. very destructive to ANYTHING behind or beside them because they can fly out any way.

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