9 Jul 2013

Not wearing proper gear on a motorcycle is plain stupid

For once the UK is having a nice warm summer.  Out comes the sun and out come the idiots who ride their bikes without the proper gear.
This is not the kind of sight I like to see.  Ever.  Ever, ever, ever.  
In the past two weeks I've seen countless examples of bike riders wearing t-shirts and jeans, with or without gloves.  The most common offender seems to be the sportsbike rider.  Here's one I snapped yesterday.  
He's out for a blast on his 150bhp, 180kg bike wearing no gloves, jeans, shoes and a t-shirt.  He overtook the Kia just as the approaching van drew parallel.  If he came off his bike he'd have been doing 60mph or so and would have needed new skin on about 80% of his body.

Even jeans don't provide protection.  Have a read of Wes Siler's article, with gory photos, written after he came off a bike at 40mph whilst wearing jeans.  Imagine the damage tarmac would do to your arms and back whilst sliding along it at 60mph.

The worst example I've seen was a couple, aged 50 or so, on a Honda Goldwing riding through our village.  They were both wearing shorts, t-shirts, sandals and open-faced helmets.  If they crashed on the 60mph road immediately after the village they would both be eating hospital food for quite some time.

Yes, it's hot at the moment. If you wear jeans make sure they are kevlar lined.  Wear a leather or textile jacket with armour, wear gloves, wear boots.  Any less and you'll be enjoying be watching the rest of the summer sun through a hospital window should you fall off.

Take a read of Colin Hubbard's excellent article - All Geared Up for tips on what bike gear to buy and wear for all conditions.  Ironically Colin has fallen off his pushbike whilst trying to mount a kerb and now has a face like a butchers window.