Buzzard claims riders in Kansas - BMW K1600 Forum : BMW K1600 GT and GTL Forums
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post #1 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 11:08 AM Thread Starter
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Buzzard claims riders in Kansas

Most of the buzzard/vulture discussions have seemed to come while discussing lights or horns, but it bears discussion separately, to be aware of the dangers.

https://www.outdoorhub.com/news/2019...orcycle-crash/

Our extremely astute membership will note a couple things right away: 1. H-D riders; 2. No helmets. For those who came over from H-D or still have one, yes, I'm sure somewhere in the world a neurosurgeon rides his Harley w/o a helmet, but somehow I'm betting not many do, and I'm betting the vast majority of you who came over and/or still have your Harley, too, wear a helmet. This isn't about politics, and I personally HATE helmet laws for adults. Your life/your choice.

But from the description of the accident, it seems likely a helmet might have saved one or both.

And finally, unless you're doing 80 and hit squarely in the head (which with a vulture might very well knock you right off the bike), you HAVE to be prepared to absorb rock hits, hornet stings inside your gear, or whacks from buzzards, without jerking the bars. Riders hardly every talk about it, but it bears repeating. Safely dodging before impact, if possible, can save you, but over-reacting after you've already been hit can kill you.
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post #2 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 11:25 AM
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I can't say if there was cause and effect, or even correlation, between the accident and the brand of motorcycle. No helmet use seems related to the results.

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post #3 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 11:25 AM
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Right!
If he was wearing his helmet after a 60+mph impact with a 5 lb buzzard he would only be in a coma at the very worst.

The wife?
Just multiple broken bones but she would live too.
lol

Point taken, but if someone isn't going to wear a helmet telling them the odds of impacting a medium to large bird probably isn't going to convince them.

Sometimes your number just gets called.

Thinking about it, helmet or no helmet, that type of impact probably breaks your neck.
Again, it doesn't diminish the safety point, just sayin.

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Last edited by evomind; 04-24-2019 at 11:30 AM.
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post #4 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 11:36 AM
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After impact with the buzzard, he lost control and drove off the road into a barbed wire fence. They weren't knocked off the bike by the bird. Who knows if having a helmet would have changed things. I've had stuff hit my helmet that I'm glad didn't hit my face.

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post #5 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 11:51 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justcharlie View Post
I can't say if there was cause and effect, or even correlation, between the accident and the brand of motorcycle. No helmet use seems related to the results.
Call it anecdotal, but I've seen more Harley riders in states with no helmet laws choose to exercise their freedom to not wear a helmet than any other brand. If anyone else's anecdotal mileage has varied, I'd be interested in hearing it. I really would like to see such a study done scientifically, though. And I'd gladly wager that those, regardless of brand, who choose not to ride with a helmet are, just on average and not as to any particular rider, a bit more intellectually challenged than those who ride with a properly certified helmet.

To be both clear and fair, I have known MANY VERY intelligent Harley riders, too, including Board-certified physicians, attorneys, engineers, and folks with Ph.D's in scientific disciplines, and folks with no degree at all who just happen to be extremely smart. And some people who ride BMWs, Ducs and GWs are blithering idiots. I'm sure some people, somewhere, on one of those bikes/brands eschews a helmet. But I've never seen one in the wild.

Also to be fair, were it not for the cool factor of painted helmet designs, young sportbike riders might be exactly the same, and even then, I've seen guys on 'Busas riding with expensive helmets stuck on the side-rear of the bike.

But if your point is that by FAR the most reasonable factor to use in determining whether an accident is survivable is helmet use, regardless of brand, I'd agree, and I'd hope like heck we all would. That's the most important point here. Wear a dadgummed helmet. That's a no-brainer, pardon the pun.

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post #6 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 12:00 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justcharlie View Post
After impact with the buzzard, he lost control and drove off the road into a barbed wire fence. They weren't knocked off the bike by the bird. Who knows if having a helmet would have changed things. I've had stuff hit my helmet that I'm glad didn't hit my face.
Exactly. Thus my point about not overreacting when hit. We can't know, of course, but at least the way the article was written at least, it implied that may have happened. I've seen many motorcyclists nearly crash from overreacting to something and jerking the bars. Even if it didn't happen here, it bears discussion, IMO.

We can never truly "know" about anything in such situations, unless you had it on film, and replicate the accident with helmet and without and use an accelerometer, etc., but it's all about playing the odds.

You might be thrown clear of a car crash without a seatbelt, and you might be killed because your seatbelt held you in place, but if you're in your cage, you're statistically better off wearing it.

To be fair, we've all made a choice to engage in an activity which increases our risk of death, even with a helmet. But again, you're statistically much better off wearing it.

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post #7 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 12:17 PM
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Being a HD, maybe the salient issue is: "How loud were the pipes?"
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post #8 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 12:32 PM
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Helmet debate aside, there is another issue of which many folks (riders and not) are not aware.

It is not uncommon for scavenger birds like vultures, eagles (especially Golden eagles) to eat so much that they are unable to fly out of ground effect and will often times (but not always) take off into the wind and stay only a foot or two off the ground. When you see a large bird eating alongside the road, do not assume they will take off away from your approaching vehicle nor get very high very quickly.
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post #9 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 12:48 PM
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To some degree, the rider's ergo makes a difference in how he/she can react to road hazards like this. The typical "folded taco" rider position is not only ergonomically wrong, it does not allow for quick body movement in reaction to an impending impact from flying objects. With his feet forward, the rider relies solely on his arms to absorb the impact energy.

Contrast that to a forward lean and rider feet directly under (or even behind). The rider can quickly arch forward and duck behind the windshield. He is also in a much better position to brace for impact by leveraging the larger muscles in his torso and legs, leaving his arms able to maintain control of the motorcycle.

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post #10 of 55 Old 04-24-2019, 12:54 PM
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What a surprise.....
The thread goes from a safety message in response to some rider and passenger getting taken out by a medium flying bird, to we as BMW riders are smarter and drive the perfect bikes and everyone is in the presence of greatness in our company...

Probable the bird would have hit our large windshield anyway.
lol
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