It seems like every time you go out on a ride, someone flicks a cigarette butt at you, tailgates you, or almost plows right into you – sometimes infuriating, sometimes downright scary! We spoke to you on social media about your most hated things that happen while you’re out on a ride – these were your top 10 responses!
It seems like it never fails – every time you go out for a ride, someone does something, or something happens, that absolutely grinds your gears! We talked with you, our customers, on social media and forums to get your take on the most frustrating, most annoying, or scariest things that happen while riding that you absolutely can’t stand – and these were your responses.
See if you agree (and if you know anyone that does any of these things, make sure to send them this article so they get the picture!)
10) Riders Who Ride In a Group and Block Traffic
We’ve all come across a big group of motorcycle riders at some point while riding that acts like they absolutely own the road. Many times, these riders are clustered up in a formation so messy and spread out that you can’t even get around them, holding you and all the other traffic up as a result – very aggravating.
But what is downright infuriating is when groups of riders actually do this deliberately, stopping the flow of traffic so they can enjoy their “show of force,” or worse, shutting down the road completely to do wheelies, burnouts or other stunts. That not only pisses you off in the moment, but it leaves a bad taste in the mouth of drivers in our communities who think “that’s just how motorcycle riders act.”
Seriously – it’s not hard enough already being a rider out in the world without making people hate us even more?
9) Excessively Loud Exhausts
Some riders enjoy the finely-tuned, and mellow sound of a fully stock exhaust, and many opt to modify their exhausts to something more performance oriented that shows off the sound of their machine a little. We’re gearheads here at BikeBandit – we get it.
But then there are those who run insanely loud exhausts – or worse, straight pipes. And they’re usually the same ones pinning the throttle on every launch, bouncing off the rev limiter while riding through town, and blipping the throttle at every stop light. It’s unnecessary and very annoying, not to mention it puts a target on our back for the public (and law enforcement) even bigger than the one that is already there.
We get it, “loud pipes save lives” and all (a debatable point already), but if you’re whacking the throttle open for no reason at a stop light to show off, trust us, you’re pissing everyone off (yes, even other riders!)
I’m gonna go ahead and go with “excessively loud” on this one.
8) Oh, Deer!
Granted, nobody can really be at fault when a deer decides to dart out into your path while on a ride. But at best, it can put a terrifying scare into you – at worst, it can actually cause an accident, either by forcing you to swerve suddenly, or even making direct impact with your bike!
Deer are no joke, either – believe it or not, motorcycle collisions caused by deer cause serious injury or death to the rider nearly 70% of the time, and deer-related collisions actually kill an average of over 200 Americans each year! (For more information on deer-related collisions while riding and how to prevent them, check out our article When Animals Attack: Dealing With Animals In The Road On Your Bike .)
This happens a lot more than you might think!
7) People Who Mow Grass Into The Street
“If it’s not on my property, it’s not my problem.” That must be the mentality of that rare breed of person who mows their thick, wet, grass right into the road – and right into your path while you’re on your bike. They are clearly oblivious to the fact that all their clippings can become very slippery underneath the tires of your bike! But what do they care… “it’s biodegradable, right?”
Not on my property, not my problem right? WRONG.
No, we’re not talking about the crew that busts the grill and a cooler out at the stadium on game day. This kind of tailgater rides your butt on the road, thinking somehow that putting their front bumper within feet of your will either get you to go faster, or force you out of their way.
This is already aggravating when in a car – but you really have to be a special kind of jerk to do it to someone on a motorcycle who, should they mistakenly get too close and cause an accident, could end up being a crumpled pile of human underneath their car! And yet there they are, hovering behind you in the rearview with no regard for the danger they are putting you in by riding your fender. Now that is seriously hateable!
5) People Who Cross Double Yellows On Curvy Roads
Both motorcycle riders and drivers are guilty of this one – when you’re on a windy road, and someone coming in the opposite direction crosses the double yellow into your lane. That split second will send you to pucker city in an instant – and that’s assuming you don’t get into a head on collision!
These types of crashes are nothing to take lightly either – while head-on collisions are not the most common type of accidents for riders, they do result in the highest rates of serious injury or death for them. And all just because someone wanted to ride or drive faster than their skills can handle – an absolute tragedy for both all parties involved.
If you see something like this on a fast ride through the canyons…it could be the last thing you see.
This is closely related to tail-gating, but even more sinister – when someone feels like you’re following them too closely, and smashes on the brakes to scare you into backing off. In a car, it’s rude, and very scary – but when a car does it to a motorcycle, it’s damn near attempted assault!
Luckily, motorcycles are nimble and typically have good braking ability, so we can usually react to that kind of situation fairly quickly (if we’re paying attention, at least.) But what goes through the minds of people who brake-check a motorcycle, I will never know – but I do know, it ain’t anything good.
3) People Who Flick Cigarettes Onto The Road (and Onto You)
Littering in general is one of the nastiest, most foul things a person can do on the road – utterly disrespectful to not only the environment, but every other driver behind them. But when it’s a cigarette butt they’re tossing off, it’s even more despicable – they’re literally launching something set on fire right at you!
When you’re in your car, it’s upsetting – but when you’re on a bike and get a butt tossed at you, it’s a real “WTF” moment (and I know some of you riders won’t let someone like that get away without a “stern talking-to,” if you know what I mean!)
If that thing ends up hitting me, we’re gonna have a problem.
2) People Texting And Swerving While Driving
Using a phone while driving in general is a dangerous distraction, but texting – which requires focused concentration on a tiny screen – while driving is almost suicidal. Yet we see people do it, every single day. Hundreds of them.
Texting at a light is one thing – not exactly smart, but you’re probably not hurting anyone either. But we’ve all seen that one car before, driving way too slowly, swerving from side to side in their lane, almost looking drunk. And when you pull up next to them, you see it: the phone in their hand, as they’re furiously tapping away at the screen, holding a full-on conversation. I don’t know if I’m more angry, or more sad at the state of human affairs when I see this. But I do get the hell away from them while riding.
1) Drivers Who Turn Left or Pull Out Right In Front Of You
This seems to be the number one most hated thing by motorcycle riders, not because it’s necessarily such rude behavior – drivers who do this usually don’t even realize they are doing it – but because it is so dangerous, and happens so often! It often seems like you can’t go on a single ride without someone who had no idea you were even there plowing right into you.
There is actually a reason for this – a phenomenon called inattentional blindness, where someone will not notice something that happens right in front of them because their brain was not “primed” to look for it (you can learn more about it in this article, Ride Like You’re Invisible…Or Be Seen?. Drivers are used to looking for other cars and trucks, but many are not trained to look for motorcycles – which is why some people can pull out right in front of you, even if it seems like they looked right at you.
People turning in front of a motorcycle is the most frequent cause of accidents for motorcycle riders…and it usually goes a lot worse for the rider than the driver. Never, ever assume you were seen by someone who can pull out in front of you!
This is not just a “hated” occurrence, but actually, the most dangerous thing that can happen to a rider. The most common cause of motorcycle collisions is the infamous “left turn at an intersection in front of a motorcycle,” which often ends in serious injury or death to the rider – and anything that causes that many riders to go down, get hurt, and even lose their lives is something we absolutely can’t stand. So remember to look for it when you’re out riding – never trust your safety to another driver, and always assume you might not have been seen, especially in cross traffic!
What else happens while you’re out riding that grinds your gears?