About a month ago I was riding through a busy part of my city (Kingsway, Manchester if anyone knows it) and though it was 2 lanes the cages could not seem to do that and traffic was stopped as people were trying to figure out where they wanted to go. I knew where I wanted to go and could easily see a path through the maze of vehicles. It was dark and I started duck walking my way with a little roll on through the maze. While passing a double parked minivan on the left the passenger opened their door about 12″and I ran into it with my left leg as I saw an opening just ahead and started to give it some gas.
They closed the door and I pulled ahead and to the side as my leg was screaming. I was wearing jeans and was pretty sure I did not have any serious injury. The driver came over (kid must have be 17 or what ever age they let you drive in the UK) and was very concerned, I told him I was ok and that it was my own fault.
I knew that
a) I was in a hurry
b) I was lane splitting
c) was not paying attentionto what the drivers were doing, only the cars. I was not riding safe.
It was a wake up call as I had let my guard drop now that I had over 5000 miles on my 650 Burgman and was getting a bit cocky, it could have been much much worse if I had been going faster. This set me back by quite a bit in my riding in terms of taking chances. I have not been able to get on the highway since and spend much more time watching the drivers to see where they are looking and what they are doing while driving.
My leg is better, bruise gone, but it remembers and so do I
So go out there and get scared (just a little) but, don’t get put in the hospital, get a bruise on your leg or on your ego. If you find your self getting home and don’t remember the trip, ask yourself if you are letting your guard down, the bike may be an automatic, but you can’t afford to be.
Ride safe everybody